Evolution of Historiography in Greek Civilization

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 28 September 2016

Evolution of Historiography in Greek Civilization

Historiography is the study of how people transmit and obtain knowledge over time. It is a subject that can explain how people’s culture, social networks, economy and political ways have evolved over time. It simply shows people where they have come from to attain what is known as modernity. There are many people who have learnt the different histories of different cultures. In the paper, it is evident that there is a historiography on Greek civilization. This means that it will look at how ancient Greek used to be and how it is right now in this era of modernity.

It is evident that Greek has contributed to so much especially in languages all over the world thus its history can easily be studied. Many of its writings have been used and are still being used to date but the fact is that it has changed in order to cope with the changing world (Ernst, chapter 1-6). The study of Greek historiography includes looking at the Ancient Greek whereby it is the time from Greek history to the Greek’s Dark Ages including the time when the Romans conquered it. Greek is usually considered as the provocation of Western Civilization foundation because of its powerful culture.

The Greek’s powerful culture is moved from the Roman Empire to numerous parts of Europe. The main issue is that Greek civilization has had a major influence in many different languages especially in the European countries. Most of the words used by the different languages have come from the Greek words and symbols. More so, Greek is not only known for its influence in language only but also philosophy, education, art and political systems (Rodger, pp. 51). Many philosophical theories have Greek origin and the use the Greek names.

America and Europe adopted these terms and used them in their studies. To date most scientific names have Greek origin. Mycenaean civilization came to an end in 1150BC and there is not so much history about it as many historians study ancient Greek from the Olympic Games in 776BC. Civilization in Greek is said to have begun after the death of Alexander the Great which was in 323 BC. Since the study of the Ancient Greek has mixed up history, it has been divided in to four parts; Greek Dark ages, archaic period, classical period and Hellenistic period.

The Dark Ages period is said to have begun on 1100 to750 BC which saw the coming up of geometrical designs which were done on pottery work. The archaic period lasted between 750 to 480BC where artists were characterized by making sculptures that had unique and stiff poses. The classical period was exemplary for instance it had the Parthenon. Lastly, the Hellenistic period which begun on 323Bc and ended on 146 BC was characterized by the gaining of power and expansion of the Greek culture. This was when Alexander the great died and the roman conquest came to an end.

The culture and society of the Hellenistic times did not undergo any changes until the time Christianity started to rule (Ernst, chapter 1-6). The rule of Alexander the great brought contributed to the expansion of Greek territories. This needed a political structure that kept on changing with the different phases of Greek civilization. Greece had very many independent cities and they were not divide din terms of tribes and kingdoms like other societies. The people knew that they were one and there was no need to dwell on tribal issues.

This is because all of them shared the same language, religion and culture thus unified them. It should be noted that despite the recognition of them being one they were aware of the different tribes and origins where different people came from but this did not divide them at all. This is seen when different tribes in Greece unify to fight against the people who invaded Persia. In addition, the different city states were governed differently. People put up different functions for their kings especially during the Greek Dark Ages.

This changed during the archaic period when different cities practiced oligarchies. The governing of a city now became hereditary whereby leadership was passed on to the son of the king. Due to the problems brought about by tyranny like protecting people of the same cultures thus bringing social unrest, Greece was the first to bring up the concept of democracy in the world (David, pp. 120-126). Citizens came for an assembly whereby they could choose who was to run the office and who was not to be in the office. The problem was that the poor people could not speak in the assemblies and even run for office.

Later the democracy levels increased leading to the allowance of poor people to speak out their views and the ability for them to run the office. Athens was the first city to practice full democracy leading to other cities copying its strategy (Anne, pp. 38-40). In ancient Greece, there was nothing like special privileges. If one was not native-born in Greece they were not protected by the laws of any city state in Greece. The society was divided in to social classes by the amount of wealth one had. The only way one could move up the social ladder was if they made a lot of money.

Slaves were also found in Greece but they did not have any power over any one in Greece. They were supposed to follow orders and they were not allowed to own any kind of property not only democratic rights. Young boys were allowed to start school at the age of seven years. They learnt different things like science, art, music and so on when they were older. At the age of eighteen years schooling had to come to an end and one would now become a useful member of the society by becoming part of the army through intense training (Leonora, pp. 128-130). Reference Anne P. , 2004.

The Greek Civilization; Ancient Greece, published by DK publishers. Pp. 38-40. David S. , 2004. Transformation of the culture; Ancient Greek Civilization, published by Blackwell. Pp. 120-126. Ernst Breisach, 2007. Historiography Ancient, Medieval and Modern; published by the University of Chicago press. Chapters 1 to 6. Leonora N. , 2004. Social, political and culture of Greece; Temper of Greek Civilization, published by Brown University. Pp. 128-130. Rodger D. W. , 2008. The Greek dialect, the ancient European languages: Published by the Cambridge University press. Pp. 51.


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  • University/College: University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 28 September 2016

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