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History 8: Beginnings: Greece


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How did the sea play a role in Greek life?
Greeks became fishermen, traders & pirates because they were surrounded by the sea.
Who were the Minoans?
2500 - 1450 BC. On island of Crete. Chief deity: Earth Mother (or Great Goddess). Well developed artistic culture.
What brought an end to Mycenaean life?
Fighting among the Mycenaeans & invaders like the Dorians.
What did the Illiad & the Odyssey represent for the Hellenic civilization?
Schools in ancient Greece used them to teach students to be proud of their Greek history. Values of Hellenic civilization: love for nature, importance of husband-wife relationship, tender feelings, loyalty between friends, strive for excellence, meet with dignity whatever fate has in store for you.
How did the Greeks feel about their deities?
Much more than any other civilization, the Greeks humanized their gods. Greek deities had human forms & behaved like humans - married, had children, lied, murdered, fought, played tricks - possessed super human powers.
Who were the Ionians?
750 BC reintroduced culture, crafts & skills to homeland - things like alphabet used by Phoenician traders. End of "dark age".
How did the climate play a role in Greek life?
Greeks could spend lots of time outdoors - assemble for meetings, teach in public gardens, theaters in the open-air.
What was the "new" Greek civilization called?
Hellenic, after the original people of Greece. 700 -336 BC. Culture had Mycenaean elements.
Who was Homer?
A blind poet who composed the two most famous Greek epics - the ILLIAD & the ODYSSEY.
How did the Minoans earn their living?
Sea trade: oak and cedar forests provided wood for ships. The island's location allowed Minoan traders to reach Egypt & Mesopotamia.
What did the mountains do for Greeks?
Protected and isolated them on the mainland. Made attacks by foreigners difficult. Limited travel and communication between communities SO Greeks never united under one government BUT they did speak same language and practice same religion.
Who was Heinrich Schliemann?
A German archaeologist who claimed ( in 1870 AD) that Troy existed and was a major trading city in Asia Minor.
Why didn't the Minoans build walls around their cities?
Because their ships guarded the island & kept it safe from attacks.
What is the climate?
Mild, with rainy winters, hot & dry summers
What was discovered at Knossos (King Minos' palace)?
a labyrinth
What were the palaces in the city of Mycenae used for?
Centers of government & production of artistic items like making jars for storing wine, oil - making bronze swords & ox-hide shields.
What is the "dark age"?
Dorians rule during 300 years of Greek history when trade stopped, poverty, loss of skill to write & craft making.
What is the story of the Odyssey?
It describes the trip home of the Mycenaean king, Odysseus, after the fall of Troy. It took him 10 years to return to Greece. People call any long, adventure journey an odyssey.
Where was ancient Greece located?
In Europe: BALKAN PENINSULA (southern part) and a group of ISLANDS in the AEGEAN SEA near Asia Minor
Did the Minoans influence the Mycenaeans?
Yes, Minoan traders visited the Greek mainland. Mycenaeans adopted metalworking & shipbuilding techniques & navigation by sun and stars - also worshiped Minoan earth Mother.
What is the story of the Illiad?
Paris, a Trojan prince falls in love with Helen, the wife of a Mycenaean king and takes her to Troy. So, the Mycenaeans attack Troy for 10 years, but cannot capture the city. They trick the Trojans by building a hollow wooden horse which the Trojans think is a gift and they bring it into the city. At night the Greeks creep out of the horse and kill the Trojan men, enslave women & children and burn the city to the ground.
What was each Mycenaean kingdom like?
Centered around a hilltop with royal fortress on top. Stone walls circled fortress. Nobles lived on estates outside walls. Slaves who farmed lived in villages on estate.
Who were bards?
Singing storytellers who kept alive Mycenaean traditions during the "dark age".
Who were the Mycenaeans?
Came from Indo-European peoples of central Asia. Population grew so they moved into Balkan Peninsula and mixed with the Hellenes & set up a group of kingdoms.
How did the activities of the gods & goddesses influence life and religion?
The activities of the gods and goddesses explained why people behaved the way they did and the direction of peoples' lives. Gods caused events like the seasons, violent storms to occur.s
How did the Mycenaean government collect taxes?
Government kept records of the wealth of every person, collected taxes in the form of wheat, livestock, honey.
What happened during the "dark age"?
Thousands of refugees fled the mainland and settled in Ionia (the west coast of Asia Minor & islands).
Who were the Dorians?
Greek speaking, entered Greece from North, used Iron weapons to take over.
What is the Trojan War?
The Mycenaeans supposedly fought the people of Troy in the mid-1200's.
Who was Sir Arthur Evans?
British archaeologist who discovered Minoan civilization on island of Crete in 1900 AD. Found palace of King Minos at Knossos.
How were geological features helpful to early civilizations?
!.) Between the mountain ranges and along coast lie fertile plains good for farming 2.) coastline provides many fine harbors.
What is a labyrinth?
a maze
How did the Greeks relate to their gods?
They saw their gods as sources of power - physical & mental. They tried to be like them by doing everything to the best of their ability.
What did the nobles do?
Turn out in armor when the king needed them to supply horse-drawn chariots.
Where did Homer set the Illiad & the Odyssey?
During and after the Trojan War.
What decorations were found at King Minos' palace
wall murals of men and women with curled hair, gold jewelry & wide metal belts - dancing, sports (boxing)

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