Chapter 7 The Greek Adventure Three Epochs of Ancient Greek History Minoan-Mycenaean Age Hellenic...

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Transcript of Chapter 7 The Greek Adventure Three Epochs of Ancient Greek History Minoan-Mycenaean Age Hellenic...

  • Chapter 7The Greek AdventureThree Epochs of Ancient Greek HistoryMinoan-Mycenaean Age Hellenic periodHellenistic Age

  • Geography and Political DevelopmentGreece is shaped by its geographymany small islands and mountainous southern tipLittle suitable land for large scale farmingNo place within Greece was 80 miles from the seaGreeks expert sailors with ships, shipping was livelihoodTravel and trade by sea easierGeography encouraged political fragmentationOwn sense of community and identityOnly secondarily shared common culture and language

  • THE MINOAN CIVILIZATIONSOrigins of Greek civilization traced to CreteFound urbanized civilization around 2000 BCECretan culture called Minoan (Minos, mythical king of Crete)Not known if Minoans were Greeks but part of the formation of Greek civilizationIslanders established a seaborne commercial network Became wealthy through their mastery of the seaWealth produced a socially complex society (tiny states with kings)

  • MYCENAEAN CIVILIZATIONSMycenaeans, mainland Indo-European peopleinvaded Cretedestroyed island settlementstook over trading networkOur knowledge comes from archaeological excavations and epic poems, the Iliad and the OdysseyTrojan War probably caused by Mycenaeans trade rivalry with TroyMycenaeans engaged in extensive internal warfareFell to the DoriansDark Ages began as culture declined

  • Map 7.1

  • Early Hellenic CivilizationThe Polis (pl poleis)Community of free persons making up a townCould be any size: Athens 300,000 peopleEach polis a political and cultural unit, but also as part of distinct Greek culturePolis, frame of reference for all public life

  • Early Hellenic CivilizationNot everybody was a citizenWomen excludedMany resident were aliensMany slavesIncluded only free males over age 20Each polis had same economic and demographic designTown of varying size, surrounded by farms, pasture, woodsArtisans, traders, import-export merchants, intellectuals, artists etc.Most Greeks were peasants, workers

  • Athens and SpartaTwo poleis dominated Greek life and politicsThey came into conflictFour types of government known to the GreeksMonarchyAristocracyOligarchyDemocracy

  • Early AthensOriginal monarchy forced aside by aristocratsAristocrats gave way to oligarchsMost important oligarch was SolonOligarchs gave him supreme power to deal with discontentHe established a constitutionPisistratus made himself sole ruler, gave concessions to common peopleCleisthenesTrue founder of Athenian democracyBelieved the people should have the last word in their government

  • Athenian DemocracyEkklesia town meetingAll free male Athenians, met on ad hoc basisAll could speak freelyAll could be electedBouleCouncil of 500 citizens, served 1-year termsDay-to-day legislature, executiveSupervised civil and military affairsAll male citizens would serve at least one termDemeTerritorial unitCould select certain number of boule members

  • Athenian DemocracyOstracismPushing out of citizen who did not conform to will of othersPerson had to go into exile, lost all rights of citizenshipDemocracyAn abnormal system of governmentDaring when introducedNot used again until 18th centurySome poleis adopted similar governmentsResistance even within such poleis

  • Spartan MilitarismSparta differed from Athens in almost every wayMessenian Wars: Sparta fought with nearest neighbors and wonDefeated people became near-slaves helotrySparta became nation of soldiers and helpersEconomic needs largely met by captive helotsWorked the fields, did all crafts, commerceSpartans devoted all their energies to military arts

  • Spartan MilitarismSpartans held arts in contempt, rejected individualismPublic life meant total obedienceGovernment headed by ephors (elected officers)Most Greeks admired Spartan way of lifeSelf-discipline, courage, rigid obedience, physical vigorSingle-minded patriotismSparta was conservative, non-aggressive stateArmy was large and feared, thus rarely usedBecame peaceable polis

  • Persian WarsAthens and Sparta concerned with keeping independent of foreign threat (Persia)First Persian War Athenian victoryAthens went to aid rebellious Persian coloniesPersian emperor Darius sent army to GreecePersians defeated at Marathon in 490 BCE

  • Persian WarsSecond Persian WarEven more decisive Greek victoryOther poleis helped AthensSpartan troops defeated Persians at Thermopylae in 480Athenian navy defeated Persians at Salamis Greece had turned back PersiaCrucial turning point for Western civilization

  • Peloponnesian War431-404 BCENo harmony among Greeks after Persian WarsAthenians under Pericles in conflict with Corinth, a Spartan allySparta defended Corinth, Pericles responded with warAthens thought they could defend against Sparta indefinitelyWar was an intermittently fought deadlockIn 404 Spartans defeated Athenian navy with Persian helpWar was a loss for all concerned

  • Final Act in Classical GreeceGreeks continued to fight for two generationsMacedonians took over from northPhilip of Macedonia turned it into effective, aggressive stateTook over most of mainlandCity states became provinces of Macedonian EmpireFrom then on, Greece was almost always under foreign rule

  • ALEXANDER AND THE CREATION OF A WORLD EMPIREAlexander reigned for 13 years conquering the world:an unresisting Egyptthe mightiest empire the world had yet seen, the empire of Darius III of Persiatribal kingdoms of the Indus basin and the highlands to its north (present-day Pakistan and AfghanistanThe Army exhausted, Alexander led his men back to Persia where he died a year later in Babylon at age 33

  • Map 7.2

  • A Mixed CultureAlexander the Greats empire disintegrated the day he diedTerritories split into kingdoms (Hellenistic kingdoms), each ruled by one of his generalsIntermarriage was encouragedTen-of thousands of Greeks left overcrowded, resource-poor Greece to make their names and fortunes under Greco-Macedonian controlGreek values/ideas were imposed on Asiatics and EgyptiansGreek rulers failed to duplicate the polis of shared government and interdependent communityAccepted the monarchy and became subjectsIndian Hindu/Buddhist world introduced to the Western worldDirect trade contacts between India and the Mediterranean

  • Greeks and Easterners in the Hellenistic KingdomsTHREE MAJOR KINGDOMS:Ptolemaic, Kingdom of EgyptGeneral Ptolemy captured Egypt and ruled as a divine king, like the pharaohsBy 100s BCE, Egypt became a hybrid society - Greeks and Egyptians intermixed Seleucid, Kingdom of PersiaGeneral Seleucus ruled from Indias borders to the MediterraneanKingdom began to lose pieces to rebels because of its large expanseImmigrant Greeks mixed with locals especially in Syria and TurkeyWhen Romans invaded the western areas, most of the east was lostAntigonid KingdomGeneral claimed the Macedonian homeland and part of GreeceRest of Greece divided into city-states vying for political and economic supremacyBoth fell to the Romans in the middle 100s BCE

  • Discussion Questions1. The polis was the organizational unit of Greek civilization. What commonalities exist between the polis and the modern city? What does the modern city have that the polis did not? Are there advantages to living in the polis; what are they?2. The rule of the people was one of Athens most enduring developments, yet it differed from modern ideas of democracy. What comparisons can you make between Greek and modern democracy? Are there advantages of the Athenian model over the modern one?