Channel: Best Documentary 2016
Description: Ancient Greece was a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to c. 5th centuries BC to the end of antiquity (c. 600 AD). Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era.
Included in ancient Greece is the period of Classical Greece, which flourished during the 5th to 4th centuries BC. Classical Greece began with the era of the Persian Wars. Because of conquests by Alexander the Great of Macedonia, Hellenistic civilization flourished from Central Asia to the western end of the Mediterranean Sea.
Classical Greek culture, especially philosophy, had a powerful influence on the Roman Empire, which carried a version of it to many parts of the Mediterranean Basin and Europe. For this reason Classical Greece is generally considered to be the seminal culture which provided the foundation of modern Western culture and is considered the cradle of Western civilization
In the 8th century BC, Greece began to emerge from the Dark Ages which followed the fall of the Mycenaean civilization. Literacy had been lost and Mycenaean script forgotten, but the Greeks adopted the Phoenician alphabet, modifying it to create the Greek alphabet. From about the 9th century BC written records begin to appear.
Greece was divided into many small self-governing communities, a pattern largely dictated by Greek geography: every island, valley and plain is cut off from its neighbors by the sea or mountain ranges.
The Lelantine War (c. 710 – c. 650 BC) is the earliest documented war of the ancient Greek period. It was fought between the important poleis (city-states) of Chalcis and Eretria over the fertile Lelantine plain of Euboea. Both cities seem to have suffered a decline as result of the long war, though Chalcis was the nominal victor.
A mercantile class arose in the first half of the 7th century, shown by the introduction of coinage in about 680 BC. This seems to have introduced tension to many city-states.
The aristocratic regimes which generally governed the poleis were threatened by the new-found wealth of merchants, who in turn desired political power. From 650 BC onwards, the aristocracies had to fight not to be overthrown and replaced by populist tyrants. This word derives from the non-pejorative Greek τύραννος tyrannos, meaning ‘illegitimate ruler’, and was applicable to both good and bad leaders alike
Published: October 26, 2016 11:53 am