- Its development over the years
- It economic policy
Ancient Greece is divided into cities. The Greek world is extensive and has nothing to do with modern Greece as we know it. Greece itself is composed of 80% mountains. The Greeks are mainly farmers. The mountains are certainly low, and the valleys are isolated, making communication difficult. There are two large plains in Greece (see map), the Pindos and Arcadia.
In the north, there are two other Great Plains, Macedonia and Thessaly. Cities, such Athens, Sparta and Thebes are growing. Greece also has a string of islands, the Cyclades and Crete. The Greek cities are everywhere: in Asia Minor, southern Italy (then called Magna Graecia) and in Sicily. A city is based in Southern Gaul, which is Massilia. Similarly in Africa, Cyrene. The sea therefore has a crucial role in the life of cities. None of them is located more than 90km from the coast.
The Greek world refers to a notion of culture, mixing the Greek language and Greek education. Other populations are barbarophonoï, barbarians in short, those who do not speak Greek literally. It is a non-pejorative term. For some authors, these barbarians are not interesting, wild and uncivilized. For others, like Herodotus, who traveled widely, the barbarians were very interesting to study.
The Greeks arrived in Greece before the second millennium BC probably in small masses, their culture gradually taking advantage of the other indigenous peoples. From 2000 BC to 1200 BC is the time of the palace culture. The palace is a political and economic structure. It's sort of a big community. This type of structure was developed in Crete with Minoan palaces, named after the legendary Cretan King Minos. The hierarchy is strong, as centralization. Similarly, in the Greek mainland, it is the Mycenaean palaces (of Mycenae, the home of Agamemnon). Homer speaks precisely of the chateaus in the Iliad and the Odyssey.
The chateaus disappeared in 1150 BC for some reason, in a period of regression. From 1150 BC to 750 BC is the period of dark ages in which cities appeared. The Greeks inhabited Asia Minor and Greek colonization began in ninth and eighth century BC. The dialects in Greece are numerous (Dorian, Attic), which allows to differentiate populations.
Between 1000 BC and 800 BC, Greek companies were restructuring around the Renaissance aristocrats. The economy recovered, the exchanges were increasing and there was an increase in production. Temples, solely for worship, appeared. Exchanges resumed with the Phoenicians, from whom the Greeks appropriated the alphabet. A city is a community of citizens acquiring common institutions and recognizing the rights and duties common to all. Until the late sixth century, there was the archaic period.
The classical period was very short, spanning only the fifth and fourth centuries BC. After this period, it was the Hellenistic period, extending from 323 BC (death of Alexander the Great) to 31BC (Battle of Actium). The classical period was the culmination of the Greek world. This was also the golden age of Athens city where democracy was born.
Tags: Renaissance aristocrats, Dorian, Attic, Cretan King Minos