Portal:Ancient Greece

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The Ancient Greece Portal

Location greek ancient.png
Greek influence in the mid 6th century BC.

The phrase Ancient Greece refers to the periods of Greek history in Classical Antiquity, lasting from about 750 BC (the archaic period) to 146 BC (the Roman conquest). It is generally considered to be the seminal culture which provided the foundation of Western Civilization. Greek culture had a powerful influence on the Roman Empire, which carried a version of it to many parts of Europe. The civilization of the ancient Greeks has been immensely influential on the language, politics, educational systems, philosophy, science, and arts, giving rise to the Renaissance in Western Europe and again resurgent during various neo-Classical revivals in 18th and 19th centuries Europe and the Americas. There are no fixed or universally agreed upon dates for the beginning or the end of the ancient Greek period. In common usage it refers to all Greek history before the Roman Empire, but historians use the term more precisely. Some writers include the periods of the Greek-speaking Mycenaean civilization that collapsed about 1150 BC, though most would argue that the influential Minoan was so different from later Greek cultures that it should be classed separately.

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Hoplites in combat

The Corinthian War was an ancient Greek conflict lasting from 395 BC until 387 BC, pitting Sparta against a coalition of four allied states; Thebes, Athens, Corinth, and Argos; which were initially backed by Persia. The immediate cause of the war was a local conflict in northwest Greece in which both Thebes and Sparta intervened. The deeper cause was hostility towards Sparta provoked by that city's "expansionism in Asia Minor, central and northern Greece and even the west".The war was fought on two fronts, on land near Corinth and Thebes and at sea in the Aegean. On land, the Spartans achieved several early successes in major battles, but were unable to capitalize on their advantage, and the fighting soon became stalemated. At sea, the Spartan fleet was decisively defeated by a Persian fleet early in the war, an event that effectively ended Sparta's attempts to become a naval power. Taking advantage of this fact, Athens launched several naval campaigns in the later years of the war, recapturing a number of islands that had been part of the original Athenian Empire during the 5th century BC.

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Dardanelles map2.png

Hellespont (Greek Ἑλλήσποντοs; i.e. "Sea of Helle", variously named in classical literature Hellesponium Pelagus, Rectum Hellesponticum, and Fretum Hellesponticum) was the ancient name of a narrow strait, now known by the modern European term 'the Dardanelles'. It was so called from Helle, the daughter of Athamas, who was drowned here in the mythology of the Golden Fleece.

Did you know...

  • ...that to the ancient Greeks, Paideia (παιδεία) was "the process of educating man into his true form, the real and genuine human nature ?
  • ...that in ancient Athens,only men had the right to vote or be elected to the government.Women were not sent to school.They were trained in housework and married by the time they were 13?

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NAMA Sacrifice aux Charites.jpg

Photo credit: Marsyas

One of the Pitsa panels, the only surviving panel paintings from Archaic Greece. The most respected form of art, according to authors like Pliny or Pausanias, were individual, mobile paintings on wooden boards, technically described as panel paintings.

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Bust of Demosthenes

Demosthenes (384–322 BCE, Greek: Δημοσθένης, Dēmosthénēs) was a prominent Greek statesman and orator of ancient Athens. His orations constitute a significant expression of ancient Athenian intellectual prowess and provide a thorough insight into the politics and culture of ancient Greece during the 4th century BC. Demosthenes learned rhetoric by studying the speeches of previous great orators. He delivered his first judicial speeches at the age of twenty, in which he argued effectively to gain from his guardians what was left of his inheritance. For a time, Demosthenes made his living as a professional speech-writer (logographer) and a lawyer, writing speeches for use in private legal suits.Demosthenes grew interested in politics during his time as a logographer, and in 354 BC he gave his first public political speeches. He went on to devote his most productive years to opposing Macedon's expansion. He idealized his city and strove throughout his life to restore Athens' supremacy and motivate his compatriots against Philip II of Macedon.


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