Thursday, May 5, 2016

The Contributions of the Greeks

In summing up the importance of Greek culture on our civilization today, please copy the following information into your notes.

Contributions of the Greeks
Note some of the significant achievements of the Greeks in literature:

In the Theater of Epidaurus
*Epic Poems - Long poems celebrating heroic deeds (like the Iliad and the Odyssey)

*Lyric Poems - Shorter poems dealing with personal feelings, such as love poetry

*Many classical Greek plays are still performed

*Greeks invented comedy and tragedy as genres 

Who are some important Greek thinkers in the following fields? You don't have to memorize all of these Greeks' names, but at least read over the list and think about what the ancient Greeks have given to our modern culture...

Thinkers: Socrates, Plato, Aristotle
Ideas or Discoveries: Seeking the truth by asking questions (also called the Socratic method

Thinker: Aristarchus
Ideas or Discoveries: Discovered that the Earth revolves around the sun

Thinkers: Euclid, Archimedes, Eratosthenes, Pythagoras
Ideas or Discoveries: Major developments in geometry, mathematics, and calculus 

Thinkers: Hippocrates
Ideas or Discoveries: Discovery that there are natural causes for diseases (not just caused by angry gods). Doctors take the "Hippocratic oath" today

How does Greek culture influence us today?
Note some of the significant achievements of the Greeks in literature:

Field of Study                    What the Greeks Developed                Modern Example
GOVERNMENT                 DEMOCRACY                                   (Can you think of one?)

THEATER and                    COMEDY AND TRAGEDY              (movies and television)
LITERATURE                    EPIC and LYRIC POEMS                  (book series, pop songs)

PHILOSOPHY and             CONCLUSIONS based on                  (journalism, modern
HISTORY                            EVIDENCE                                         philosophy, scientific method)

ART and                              LIFELIKE sculptures,                         (modern statues, buildings)

SCIENCE and                     GEOMETRY, ASTRONOMY,            (modern math, science,
MATH                                 MEDICINE                                           medicine)

Alexander the Great

In summing up the importance of Alexander the Great, please copy the following information into your notes.

Alexander the Great and His Influence
What three military methods did King Philip use to build Macedonia’s military power?

Professional army: 
*Highly trained                                                   
*Well paid

New battle formations:
*phalanx (line of soldiers with long spears)

New weapons and war machines:
*Battering ram

Each of the following was part of Alexander’s strategy for building an empire.

STRATEGY: Conquering New Lands
*Gave Alexander additional land, power, and wealth.
*Empire extended into Egypt, Persia, India, Asia Minor, Syria, and Libya. 

STRATEGY: Establishing Features of Greek Culture in Conquered Lands
*Modeling new cities after Greek cities.
*Leaving Greeks to rule colonies.

STRATEGY: Adopting Features of the Conquered Culture
*Adopted some aspects of native cultures.
*Many conquered people adopted Greek language, religion, and literature.
*Local people feel like Alexander is one of them. 

STRATEGY: Founding Cities and Naming Them after Himself
*Building cities, not just destroying.
*Left Greek culture and government.
*Cities named for him remind others he is GREAT. 

STRATEGY: Establishing Alexandria (in Egypt) as an intellectual center
*Library and schools in Alexandria had a HUGE impact on education and thinking.

Why did the empire break apart after Alexander’s death?
No ONE general could take Alexander’s place so several generals split the empire among themselves.

Athens, Sparta, and the Peloponnesian War

Here are some video clips about the city-states of Athens and Sparta and the Peloponnesian War between them, fought during the years 431-404 B.C.E.

Check out this easy slide showabout Athens and Sparta:

The Wikipedia article on the Peloponnesian War is actually pretty good:

Click here for a Brainpop on Athens , Brainpop on Greek gods , Brainpop on Democracy

Thursday, April 28, 2016

A Message about Great Greek Day

For Great Greek Day, many students will wear a chiton. Please watch the video to learn how to prepare your chiton...BUT REMEMBER--YOUR COSTUME WILL BE DIFFERENT ACCORDING TO YOUR CHARACTER and that's ok. Feel free to bring your costume into school and put it on during advisory.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Ancient Greece and the Persian Wars

From the British Museum's website:

The wars between Persia and Greece took place in the early part of the 5th century BC. Persia had a huge empire and had every intention of adding Greece to it.

The Persian king Darius first attacked Greece in 490 BC, but was defeated at the Battle of Marathon by a mainly Athenian force.

This map shows the routes of the Persian invasion forces and major battle sites of the Wars.
This humiliation led to the attempt to conquer Greece in 480-479 BC. The invasion was led by Xerxes, Darius's son. After initial Persian victories, the Persians were eventually defeated, both at sea and on land. The wars with the Persians had a great effect on ancient Greeks.

The Athenian Acropolis was destroyed by the Persians, but the Athenian response was to build the beautiful buildings whose ruins we can still see today. In Greek art, there are many depictions of Greeks fighting Persians and Greek plays also feature the Persian enemy.

This depiction on pottery shows a Greek soldier fighting a Persian. Notice the Persian's distinctive cap and pants.
The wars also led to a show of unity between the Greeks, which was essential to their success in defeating their enemy.

Here's a History Channel summary of the Battle of Marathon:

Here's a History Channel overview of the Battle of Thermopylae (the famous "Battle of the 300")

Here's a longer documentary (although it looks like a graphic novel and is overly dramatic) about the Persian Wars:

Here's a goofy (but informative) explanation of the Persian Wars:

Friday, April 8, 2016

Greece: Engineering an Empire

On the History Channel's Engineering an Empire: Greece, some major engineering and building achievements are described. Students are responsible for finding the answers to the following questions:

The Parthenon
Important people:
  • Themistocles (c. 525 – 460 BCE)
    • Trireme ships
  • Agamemnon (c. 1200 BCE)
    • The Iliad and the Odyssey
  • Pericles (c. 495 – 429 BCE)
    • The Parthenon
Mycenaean Civilization
1. What group of people dominates large portions of mainland Greece in 1300 BCE? Who led these people in their capital city (see map at 11:13)?

2. What was the Iliad, and who supposedly wrote it? How was it really meant to be shared?

3. What was the Lion’s Gate, and what did it symbolize about Mycenae? What architectural building technique did this structure introduce?

*What was a “tholos” tomb? Feel free to draw a sketch of one:

War with Persia
4. In September 480 BCE, what civilization tried to add Greece to their empire?

5. Briefly describe who Themistocles was.

6. How did Themistocles win the battle at Salamis?

7. In 471 BCE, Themistocles was ostracized. Why? What does being ostracized mean?

8. Briefly describe who Pericles was.

9. What was the alliance called that joined Athens together with other city-states in 478 BCE?

10. How did Athens get its name (29:15)?

The Parthenon
11. What was the Parthenon’s main function?

12. Why did many Athenians, including Plato, dislike the Parthenon?

13. Why did the Golden Age of Athens end?