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Classical and Hellenistic Greece. The Classical Period. Opens with Greeks’ victory over Persians at Salamis in 490 B.C.E. Golden Age: 480 B.C.E. and 404 B.C.E., Athens was defeated in the Peloponnesian Wars. Culture lasted until death of Alexander the Great.

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the classical period
The Classical Period
  • Opens with Greeks’ victory over Persians at Salamis in 490 B.C.E.
  • Golden Age: 480 B.C.E. and 404 B.C.E., Athens was defeated in the Peloponnesian Wars. Culture lasted until death of Alexander the Great.
  • Polis life: Human nature dictates life in the city
  • Perikles: Delian League
women in classical athens
Women in Classical Athens
  • Excluded from public affairs
  • Household duties: organization, supervision and labor.
  • Hetaera: foreign women who worked as courtesans, entertainers and prostitutes.
  • Some hetaera highly educated
the greek temple
The Greek Temple
  • Greek Orders of columns: Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian
  • Entablature: section above columns where a decorative frieze may be located
  • Pediment: triangular section at one end of roof
  • Cella: room inside temple
the acropolis
The Acropolis
  • Propylaea: massive gateway
  • Erechtheion: Ionic temple with two porches – the south side is called the Porch of the Maidens, which has columns that are female figures (caryatids).
  • Temple of Athena Nike: miniature temple surroundd by a wall depicting Athena preparing for a victory celebration
  • Parthenon
the parthenon
The Parthenon
  • Built by Perikles with funds intended for the defense of Athens
  • Architects Iktinos and Kallicrates
  • Dedicated to Athena
  • Refinements (deviations from absolute regularity): based on Golden Section, steps and entablature curved upward, columns have entasis
parthenon sculptures
Parthenon Sculptures
  • Phideas sculpted an Ivory and gold statue of Athena inside
  • Three Goddesses on East Pediment
  • West Pediment: battle between Athena and Poseidon for Attica
  • Friezes: Battle Between the Lapiths and Centaurs and the Pan-Athenaic Procession
classical humanism
Classical Humanism
  • Belief that “Man is the Measure of All Things” – Protagoras.
  • Nobility of human intelligence and action
  • Human ability to understand and control the world.
  • “Secular” humanism controversial today.
the greek classical style in art
The Greek Classical Style in Art
  • Classical Style: naturalism and idealism
  • Representing the human figure in motion: turning point for Greek sculptors
  • Idealized, yet moving toward naturalism
  • Contrapposto or “S” curve to figure
greek classical sculpture
Greek Classical Sculpture
  • Kritios Boy: Human figure in motion (fig. 3.10)
  • The Doryphoros, by Polykleitos of Argos (fig. 3.11)
  • Myron’s Discobolus (fig. 3.13)
  • Apoxymenos, by Lysippos (fig. 3.14)
  • Praxiteles’ Aphrodite of Knidos (fig. 3.13)
greek theater
Greek Theater
  • Athens: Greek Theater
  • Developed from celebrations honoring Dionysus, god of wine and fertility
  • Themes:
    • Power of the gods
    • Course of human destiny
    • The nature of love and justice
greek tragedy
Greek Tragedy
  • Open-air theaters or amphitheaters
  • Wealthy citizens paid playwrights and producers
  • Yearly competition
  • Actors in front of the skene
  • Chorus: actors who danced and chanted on the orchestra, the area surrounded by the theatron
greek tragic playwrights
Greek Tragic Playwrights
  • Thespis: one actor separate from the chorus
  • Aeschylus: added a second actor and dialogue. Wrote a trilogy called the Oresteia.
  • Sophocles: Golden Age of Athens, focused on individual human concerns. One of his most famous plays is Oedipus the King.
greek tragic playwrights con t
Greek Tragic Playwrights (con’t.)
  • Euripides: noted for realism, social commentary, showed people as they were, gripped by violent passions. An example of his work is the play The Bacchae.
greek comedy
Greek Comedy
  • Humorous portrayal of everyday themes and characters.
  • Sometimes quite ribald
  • Aristophanes: satirized politics and political personalities. Lysistrata is one of his noted works.
greek philosophy
Greek Philosophy
  • Philosophy: came from Greek’s fascination with rational inquiry.
  • Materialists: substance of which all matter was composed
  • Idealists: evidence of a divine and rational plan for cosmos--Pythagoras
  • Sophists: professional teachers, skeptics—Protagoras. Became cynical.
  • Founded classical Greek philosophy and never wrote a word.
  • Socratic Method
  • Gadfly of Athens – morals worth more than life itself.
  • “The unexamined life is not worth living.”
  • Trial and death: tried for religious and moral offenses.
  • Student of Socrates
  • Wrote Socrates’ dialogues
  • Apology: Socrates’ trial
  • Phaedo: Socrates’ last conversation
  • The Republic: ideal city-state/ three parts of soul: reason, moral courage, appetites
  • The Academy
  • Challenged Plato’s teachings
  • Tutor for Alexander of Macedonia
  • Ethics:Happiness is found in balance between two extremes: Golden Mean
  • Poetics: Formal pattern of Greek drama.
  • Lyceum
aristotle and plato contrasted
Plato separated Ideal Forms from material things.

Plato made universals primary and particulars secondary.

Plato emphasized Being over Becoming.

Aristotle insisted on the inseparability of form and matter.

Aristotle made particulars primary and universals secondary.

Aristotle emphasized Becoming over Being.

Aristotle and Plato Contrasted
aristotle and plato contrasted1
Plato celebrated mathematics as the model of pure thought.

Plato’s philosophy emphasized stasis.

6. For Plato the highest form of knowledge was knowledge of the pure Forms or Ideals – Platonic Idealism.

4. Aristotle grounded his philosophical system in biology.

Aristotle’s philosophy emphasized growth and development.

For Aristotle, knowledge was grounded in empirical reality – Aristotelian Empiricism.

Aristotle and Plato Contrasted
aristotle and plato contrasted2
7. Plato’s philosophy tended toward the transcendental.

8. Plato favored intuition over logic.

9. Plato used reason to overcome the physical world.

10. Plato’s philosophy influenced Augustine’s theology.

7. Aristotle’s philosophy was directed toward the immanent.

8. Aristotle made logic the basis of his philosophy.

9. Aristotle used reason to discover the order of the world.

10. Aristotle’s philosophy influenced Aquinas’ theology.

Aristotle and Plato Contrasted
greek music
Greek Music
  • Music: of the “Muses” Goddesses who inspired creative arts.
  • Lyre
  • Aulos
  • Music could bring about feelings through modes
  • Music lost forever
  • Pythagoras’ intervals: octaves
hellenistic style
Hellenistic Style
  • Emotionally charged realism of later Greek sculpture
  • Alexander the Great – Persia and Egypt
  • Individuality
  • Examples: Battle of the Gods and Giants (fig. 3.22), Nike of Samothrace (fig. 3.24) and Laocoön and His Sons (fig. 3.25)
hellenistic age
Hellenistic Age
  • Philip of Macedon subdued Greek city-states. Succeeded by son Alexander
  • Alexander loved Greek civilization and spread it throughout his empire in Persia and Egypt
  • Hellenistic: Greek-like
hellenistic legacy
Hellenistic Legacy
  • Collected great classical manuscripts in libraries.
  • Artists imitated forms and ideas of the Greeks.
  • Playwrights copied Greek theater
  • Euclid: Planets revolve around the sun
  • Established Greek culture as the standard.