Greek Civilizations Final Exam

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Athena Promachos

  • Goddess of warfare
  • statue represents battle startegy/tactics
  • intelligent warfare and successful warfare


  • He personifies battle and is a terrifying god, depicted as the perfect hoplite soldier
  • his companions in myth are personifications of feelings you get in battle such as Terror, Panic, and Rout
  • Andropodizein-> means the enslavement and defeat of your entire population for loss in battle, kill every adult male and sell every aduly female and child to slavery. Losing in battle means everything

Militia Army

  • Citizens:
  • Resident Aliens:
  • Slaves

Season for war

  • late spring and early autumn
  • citizens = farmers
  • often timed with harvest season

Homer and Herioc battle:early warfare


  • aristocratic ideal->duels
  • general melee, the tropaion
  • oligarchic warfare(aristocratic)->hoplite heavy infantry,aristiocrats in front(promachoi)
  • each warrior fought for personal glory

Classical warfare

  • simplified hoplite-> hopla (helmet,cuirass,greaves, shield)
  • Phalanx formation-> shoving, match, Spartan professionalism
  • hoplites(heavy infantry)in centre, light infantry and cavalry at ends of phalanx
  • best warriors placed at the front of phalanx-> more dangerous = more glory

Naval Warfare

  • trireme-> most widely used warship,expensive to maintain because it required every rower to respond to commands in unison; required alot of training
  • 170 rowers paid 1 drachma per day
  • trierarch-> officer who commanded the trireme,usually a more wealthy man

Macedonian Innovations

  • sarissa->very long spear, allegedly used in phalanx formation,4-7 m long
  • Javelin Throwers->used for short range contact, 20-30m
  • Slingers-> used for far range, leadsling bullet can be used to penetrate armor, 350m
  • Archers-> cannot penetrate armor, 150-200m

Siege Warfare

  • Circumvallation->build their own wall around fortified city, and starve the city by preventing food or water from getting through
  • Battering ram-> used to break down gates
  • Earth Mounds->go over top of walls by building a mound of earth
  • Undermining-> dig a tunnel under a large portion of the was so that the wall collapses in under itself
  • Siege towers-> 40 m high and bigger, covered in hide(keep wet so enemy cannot throw flaming arrows) or metal plates(for deflection)

Seige Warfare: Artillery

  • catapults->massive bow and arrow
  • Torsion->using a twisting motion to power the catapult
  • Flexion->bending the catapult to power it
  • ment to be shot at mud brick

Archimedes and the siege of Syracuse, 212BC

  • Mathematician 
  • Creates “the claw”; used to destroy triremes
  • Develops a reflecting mirror to harness the power of the sun: “death ray” aimed  at the ships of the enemy causing them to catch on fire


  • antibiotics, analgesics, anaesthetics-> modern day
  • Process of infection not understood until 1860 by Joseph Lister (antisepsis)
  • Less than 50% of people made it to 5 years old-> before antibiotics
  • Greeks had no way of fighting medicine


  • Maisma->”sacred pollution”( disease is sent by God as punishment)
  • Treatment for disease= purification
  • Turned to Egypt; more advanced medicine because of mummification/autopsy

Rational Medicine

  • Pre- socratic philosophers(late 6th century)
  • used pure logic over observation and experimentation
  • Empirical approach->collect data
  • “diagnosis”= “to know thoroughly”

Alkmaion of Croton( early 5th century)

  • performed dissection and vivisection
  • thought brain= centre of intelligence and sensation
  • Alkmaion said mother contributed genetically to child; very controversial

Aristotles’ Theories on Women

  • Women were naturally colder and wetter than men
  • Women have fewer teeth than men
  • Women have no role in conception
  • All theories come from The Doctrine of Immanent Forms

Hippocrates of Cos (late 5th century)

  • created the Hippocratic Oath-; used by doctors until about 20 years ago
  • Theory of the Four Humours (humour=”liquid”); blood,phlegm, black bile, yellow bile
  • Imbalance of Humours= Illness
  • ex. “retention of blood in a virgin”= hysteria=the wandering womb, hysterical suffocation

Treatment Options

  • Pharmaka “drugs” ( also Greek word for “poison”)
  • Diata “lifestyle”(diet)-; means watching what you eat/your activities
  • Bloodletting
  • Surgery-;preformed by barbers

Surgery: Trepanation

  • Removing a piece of the skull
  • use bow drills to make a whole in the skull

Surgery Case Study: Philip II of Macedon

  • Kritoboulos-; one of the best surgeons in Macedonian Army preformed surgery;
  • Treatment:;
  • Remove arrow: spoon of diokles
  • Remove dead tissue (sometimes used maggots as they feed on dead skin)
  • Encourage production of pus:(white pus=better means sick but will not die) vs. black pus(bad= death)
  • stitch
  • poultice(paste designed to be put into the wound in order to draw liquid out of wound) and bandage
  • prescrobe purgatives

Faith Healing/ Religious Medicine

  • Asclepius(son of Apollo); most skilled doctor on the planet;brought a dead man back to life because of this Zeus sent him to the underworld
  • Because Asclepius is formerly human he is more likely to help you if you pray to him


  • most famous sanctuary of Asclepius
  • People healed by:
  • Purification:body(washing yourself) and mind(singing hymns, prayer)
  • Sacrifice: favourite sacrifice is a rooster
  • Enkoimesis-; “sleeping inside” the abaton(sanctuary); healed in sleep or learn the rules to be healed
  • Thank offering


  • The agon: competitions
  • musical and dramatic competitions in the Theatron
  • Athletics competiton in the stadium

Olympic Games

  • Panhellenic festival,776 BC: all Greeks invited to participate
  • held at Olympia -;sanctuary of Zeus
  • largest religious festival
  • Sacred truce: guarantees safety of people travelling to nd from Olympia; not allowed to bear arms in territory of Olympia(breached regularly)
  • cutthroat competition: only winner matters
  • Ancient Olympics took 5 days

Steps of Olympic Competition

  • 1) ritual purification: athletes required to show up 1 month before games in order to follow a specific diet, train, not have sex for entire duration of games
  • 2) Procession, Prayer, and Sacrifice: huge sacrifice of oxen in order to have a feast for everyone there
  • 3) Feast: feast for everyone present
  • 4) Competitions:only musical competition is for trumper players, link between athletics and warfare
  • 5) Thank offering at the end of games

Ancient Sports

  • footraces in the stadion(190m)
  • sprinting
  • long distance running
  • Pentathalon: “five competitions”
  • Combat Sports


  • Long jump: jump from a standing position with feet together, carry weights in their hands weighing 2kg each, jump 5 times in a row
  • Javelin: use a thong so that when they throw it, it unravels and causes the javelin to spin which causes it to travel farther
  • Discus: heavier and bigger than modern discus, no movement of feet, cannot throw as far as modern discus
  • Sprint: used to weed out weaker competitors, after sprint 2 people left in competition
  • Wrestling: used upright wrestling, marked on elegance and style
  • winner of wrestling match is winner of pentathalon
  • if there is a clear winner after 3 events the pentathalon is stopped and a winner is declared

Combat Sports: Boxing;

  • no weight classes
  • Age classes: after 18 fight with men, under 18 fight with boys; same as wrestling
  • untimed matches; fight until someone surrenders or passes out
  • all hits directed at head; no body shots
  • wore gloves: strips of boiled leather about a cm wide, wrapped around the forearm, wrist, and knuckles;intended to maximize damage
  • Over time lead and iron weights were sown into gloves to make them harder

Combat Sports: Pankration

  • “all brute force”
  • compared to modern day mixed martial arts or UFC
  • 2 rules:not allowed to gouge out eyes of competitor, and no biting
  • Arachion: famous pankratis, 6th century BC, won Pankration but died during event

Equestrian Events

  • in the Hippodrome
  • Flat races: used slaves to ride horses; winner is the owner of the horse; race is 2 lengths of the track
  • Chariot Races: up to 12km in distance, 4 horses, only rich could afford to participate, Chariot drivers wear a long robe a belt and a harness around their chest to control the horses; if you crash you die

The Hippodrome

  • single track 1km long
  • notning seperating track down the middle
  • about 80m wide; 20 chariots
  • if you are caught cheating you will be whipped, debarred and fined called zanes

Heraia Festival at Olympia

  • women were allowed to compete in this festival
  • other than this women were not allowed to compete but they could enter chariot races in the games

Prizes for victory

  • presented with crown of stephanos:made from olive tree branches
  • given the right to erect a statue of yourself; as close as humans can get to divinity
  • Back home: victory ode and parade, gifts of value, stesis(food, drink all paid for the rest of your life), public role in state
  • Eternal fame-; after death become cult hero, people worship you


  • mysogyny= hate of women
  • women’s life according to men has no value: best days of women’s life is when a man marries her, and when her man carries her to her tomb
  • Creation of Women: first women called Pandora
  • Women’s Status and Life: can be a citizen “aste”, women citizens are essentially grouped  in with property, no significant legal rights; cannot hold offics, very little property rights, men legally responsible for women

Women Cont’d

  • Kyrios “guardian”-; men are always guardians of women
  • Sophrosyne-; women not supposed to be wise
  • Aidos-; shame or honesty, not suposed to look a male member of the family in the eyes
  • Isolation of respectable women
  • The gynaikon-; innermost rooms, set aside for women, furthest from entrances
  • Considered innapropriate to refer to women by name in public


  • Dowry:paid by the guardian of women, the bigger the dowry the more suitors a woman will have
  • husband is required to use the dowry to support his wife; the womean does not get any of it
  • not religious or civic ceremony; bride joins the grooms oikos(household)-;this inclues anyone attached to the household: children, slaves, mother, unmarried sisters

Marriage Cont’d

  • wife’s job is to manage affairs if the household
  • Oikonomia-; rules that govern the household, management of household
  • heir to a man without any sons is his grandsons
  • amount of property owned= wealth


  • 1 in 10 women die in childbrith; no way of dealing with infection etc
  • mother ha no legal claim to her own children


  • religion involved in fertility, prosperity, security
  • Female Sexuality= Procreation/birth(Gaia, Demeter, Aphrodite)
  • Male sexuality= juices of life= semen ; ; ; ; ; ; ( Dionysos)

Sexuality Cont’d

  • The “phallus pole”-> tree trunk decorated as an erect peni, carried in a parade to the statue of Dionysos
  • Herms-> square stone pillars with the god Hermes at the top, also has an erect penis and testicles
  • Penis is symbol of good luck and prosperity
  • Male body is eroticized -> especially young males

Human Sexuality

  • The Norm=  marriage
  • the problem=vorcious sexual appetite of women
  • women are creatures of passion and do not have intellectual capacity to control passions, men control passions and are reasonable and intellectual

Human Sexuality Cont’d

  • ;Legal ramifications:
  • Moicheia “adultery”(a public crime): women-; any extra marital sex at any time, Men-; any extra marital sex with women in another man’s oikos 
  • Rape(private crime): not considered as serious as adulteru, family decides if they want to pursue a court case, “marriage by abduction/marriage by rape”-> if the rapist is willing to marry the victim that is an acceptable solution to the crime
  • Divorce: Men-> tell wife leave house, Women-> written deposition delivered in person to magistrate in the agora

A Man’s Opportunities;


  • 1) Slaves (males and females)
  • 2) Concubines: the pallake, adds women to his household
  • 3)Prostitutes: lowest type called porne
  • 4) Pederastic homosexual Relationship: ideal love, erastes=man, eromenos= boy, man gives boy erotic gifts-;rooster,hare/rabbit, boy is not supposed to feel desire for the older man

Prostitutes in the Symposion

  • in richer houses ;a specific room is set aside for the symposion called the “andron”
  • Symposion is an all male drinking party;
  • where the kylix(cup with pornography depicted on it) is used
  • flute girls: a type of escort service
  • The Hetaira: top of the line prostitutes, most famous Hetaira is Aspasia (female companion of Pericles), they are intelligent beautiful and highly skilled

Aristophanes and Old Comedy

  • Komodia= “song of the komos/revel”
  • religious festival of Dionysos
  • 4 playwrights are chosen to complete 1 play each; competition
  • the plays: 4 actors, chorus of 24 men
  • expected to be topical and political-; anti establishment
  • obscene,insulting, and libelous
  • the parabis-;playwright uses this to have his character and chorus directly address the audience
  • intrinsically linked to democracy!

The Storyline of Old Comedy

  • reality and fantasy mingled
  • an ordinary guy takes matters into his own hands to solve a problem
  • Ending= riotous drunken pary(i.e.komos)

Aristophanes’ Lysistrata (411BC)

  • Fantasy: women rule!!, weapons= sex strike, sieze the acropolis(treasury of the state)
  • Current events: Peloponnesian War(431-404 BC), Sicilian expedition, defeat, 412 BC, oligarchic coup 411 BC
  • Aristophanes presents a parody of actual events
  • Lysimache(priestess of Athena Polias)
  • Myrrhines(priestess Athena Nike)

Primary Sources: Plato’s The Apology

  • an account of the speech Socrates makes at a trial in which he is charged with not recognizing the gods of the state, inventing dieties, and corrupting the youth of Athens
  • Socrates likens himself to a gadfly stinging the lazy horse.
  • Socrates is found guilty
  • Delphic oracle proclaimed Socrates as the wisest man because he knows that he knows nothing

Primary Source: Aristophenes’ Lysistrata

  • Lisystrata planned a meeting beween all of the women of Greece to discuss the plan to end the Peloponnesian war
  • Lysistrata asks the women to refuse sex until the treaty for peace is signed
  • Lysistrata makes plans to seize the Acropolis
  • Men plan to smoke the women out of the Acropolis
  • Lysistrata argues that the war is a concern for women especially and adds her two cents as to how the city should be run drawing an elaborate analogy to show that Athens should be structured as a woman would spin wool

Primary Source: Oedipus Tyrannos

  •  Prologosà Oedipus himself (plague in Thebes)
  • Apollo’s oracle reveals that plague will continue until the murderer of King Laius is apprehended
  • ·      raised in Corinth by the king and queen

    ·      goes to Apollo in Delphi to find out who his parents are

    ·      Apollo at Delphi tells him that he will kill his father and marry his mother

    ·      Oedipus goes into exile

    ·      In exile Oedipus kills his real father without knowing who he is

    ·      Oedipus knows the riddle to get into Thebes his reward is to marry the queen(his mother)

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