The Greek Achievement: The Foundation of the Western World

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9780140293234: The Greek Achievement: The Foundation of the Western World

The achievements of the ancient Greeks form the cornerstone of modern western civilization. This text traces the entire course of ancient Greek history across thousands of years - from the Mycenaean and Minoan civilizations of the Bronze Age through the Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic and Roman periods. The account celebrates the incredible range of Greek achievement: the architectural marvels of the Athenian Acropolis; the birth of drama and the timeless tragedies of Aeschylus, Euripides and Sophocles; Homer's epics; the philosophical revolutions of Plato and Aristotle; and the conquests of Alexander the Great.

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The Greek Achievement This is a comprehensive account of the Ancient Greeks and their civilization from the Mycenaeans (1500 BC) to the emergence of the Byzantine empire in the fourth century AD. Based on the most recent research it includes in depth studies of Greek art and architecture, theatre, politics, philosophy and science and mathematics. Full description

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The idea of an entity called Greece is a modern one, which a Thracian of Homer's time or an Athenian of the age of Pericles would not have recognised. Ancient Greek politics was organised along the lines first of family, then of clan, then of neighbourhood, and then finally of town or city; the concept of nationhood, the existence of a nation called Greece, scarcely entered the discussion.

But if there was no Greece in ancient times, there is more than one ancient Greece. One, writes the noted Classical historian Charles Freeman, can be found symbolised in the Parthenon of Athens, its graceful architecture and statuary bespeaking ideals of freedom, citizenship, truth. But another, Freeman continues, can be found early in the pages of Thucydides, who writes of, among other atrocities, the Athenians slaughtering the citizens of Melos upon their surrender after a long siege. "Whatever the achievements of the Greeks might have been", he writes, "they developed against the backdrop of a real world, one in which human beings were degraded by disease and where brutality was an everyday part of life".

Freeman traces both the real and the ideal Greek world in this comprehensive survey of ancient history, which opens with an up-to-date assessment of the Greek peninsula's Bronze Age cultures and closes with a view of the survival of Classical customs and ways of thought in the Western tradition. Gracefully written, Freeman's fine history will find a welcome place on Classicists' bookshelves. --Gregory McNamee

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New edition. 226 x 152 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. The achievements of the ancient Greeks form the cornerstone of modern western civilization. This text traces the entire course of ancient Greek history across thousands of years - from the Mycenaean and Minoan civilizations of the Bronze Age through the Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic and Roman periods. The account celebrates the incredible range of Greek achievement: the architectural marvels of the Athenian Acropolis; the birth of drama and the timeless tragedies of Aeschylus, Euripides and Sophocles; Homer s epics; the philosophical revolutions of Plato and Aristotle; and the conquests of Alexander the Great. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780140293234

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