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Ancient Greece Vocab

TermDefinition
Acropolis The fortified center of a city-state, often found on elevated ground
Agora a large open market place found in all ancient Greek city-states.
Alexander the Great Macedonian king who created one of the largest empires of the ancient world
Aristocracy Rule by a wealthy elite class. In the case of ancient Athens, this consisted of landholding, wealthy, adult Athenian males.
Aristotle Student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great who helped organize the thoughts that led to the foundation of Western philosophy
Athena Goddess of wisdom and warfare and guardian of Athens
Athens City-state in ancient Greece focused on education and creativity
City-state A central city and its surrounding villages who collectively follow a similar way of life
Corinthian type of column with more complex cravings, capital is marked by stylized acanthus leaves
Crete an Island southeast of mainland Greece where a pre-Greek civilization grew between 2600 – 2000 BCE
Democracy System of government where all individuals have a say in the decisions that affect them.
Direct democracy a system of government in which citizens participate directly rather than through elected representatives
Doric type of column without a base. It is a simple column with parallel concave flutes that get thinner toward the top.
Golden Age a.k.a. the Golden Age of Pericles, the period of time in Greek history from 546 B.C. the victory of the Greeks over Persia to the end of the Peloponnesian War in 404 B.C. when Greece achieved a high state of culture and a stable government.
Hellenistic blend of Greek, Persian, Egyptian and Indian cultures
Homer An ancient Athenian who lived in the dark ages and is credited with writing the Odyssey and the Iliad
Ionic Type of column that is thinner, sits on a base and spirals curled in toward the top
Monarchy Rule by a king or queen, often kept within a particular family, passed down from father to son
Mythology polytheistic, deities like humans, but with superhuman powers, offered explanations for natural phenomena, human qualities, and life events, key deities: Zeus, Hera, Apollo, Aphrodite, Artemis, Athena; depicted in Western Art as well as Greek art
Odyssey epic poem written by Homer
Oligarchy Rule by a small group of people
Olympics Athletic competitions held between various city-states to honor Zeus
Oracle a prophetess – who was thought to be the human voice of Apollo
Parthenon Temple on the Acropolis dedicated to the goddess Athena
Peloponnesian War A war between Athens and Sparta – 431 – 404 BCE
Pericles A great leader of Athens, great speaker, used Delian league money to beautify Athens
Philosophy the study of the processes that govern thought, perception and morality
Plato Student of Socrates, writer of philosophy, and founder of the Academy in Athens
Polis Greek city-state
Polytheism Belief in many gods
Poseidon God of the sea, earthquakes and horses
Socrates Athenian who is widely considered the father of Western philosophy
Sparta City-state in ancient Greece focused on war
Strait A narrow water passage
Tragedy a serious drama that has a sorrowful or disastrous ending.
Trojan War 10 year conflict between Sparta and Troy about which the Iliad is written.
Tyrant a person with absolute supreme power that ruled the city-states
Zeus Father of the Gods
Created by: kvarney
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