A Historical Account of Athens.docx - Running Head ATHENS 1...

This preview shows page 1 - 4 out of 13 pages.

Running Head: ATHENS 1 A Historical Account of Athens Name Course Institution Affiliation Date
ATHENS 2 A Historical Account of Athens Very few cites have a rich history such as that of Athens. One may even say that its history is one of the longest and exciting ones in both Europe and across the globe. Athens is Greece's capital and largest city with a population of approximately 3.5 million individuals. It extends over a big peninsula, protected from all sides of the horizon by hills. It has been inhabited continually for over 3,400 years (Than, 2011.The infrastructure found in Athens is exemplary to Greek ancient infrastructure. This article takes a look at Athens by highlighting its history, the key features of the city and its development as an urban center. History When one talks about the history of Athens, it is important, to begin with, its mythological background. According to myths forwarded by the Greeks, the Phoenician, was the first town to be established in Athens during the reign of Cecrops. Officially the town of Athens was formed the day the gods chose to have a competition: they then decided that the city would be named after the deity who would give the most helpful gift to humans. The god who won would also become the patron of the newly built city, the competition was held, and the two gods participate that is Poseidon, the god of the sea and Athena, the god of wisdom (Kerényi, 2008). In the contest Poseidon offered the people a horse which was a symbol for strength and while Athena offered them an olive tree which symbolized prosperity and peace ( Garland, 2008) . Athena won the contest and as such the city was named after her. Now back to reality, the city of Athens underwent through different historical times. The city of Athens started its history as a hill-fort on the Acropolis ("elevated town") in the Neolithic period, sometime between the 4th and the 3rd millennium BC ( Immerwahr, 1971) . The hill
ATHENS 3 provided excellent land and sea views and as such was used as a fortress in military conquests. Later Athens became a Mycenaean town in 1,400 BC, thriving and evolving into a religious center devoted to the goddess Athena ( Broneer, 1939) . A period of deterioration then followed in which from the 12th to the 8th century BC Greece stayed. It is thought that this was the moment when the city was governed by King Theseus, semi-mythical and a semi-existent man. What later followed the prehistoric times was the archaic period. Ancient Athens arose economically during the archaic period during these decades, but it lost control of the whole Attica, now separated into small kingdoms. In the 7th century, Athens regained authority over Attica and gradually became the country's cultural and artistic center. Aristocrats and army commanders governed the town for a century. Every citizen's hierarchy relied on his riches, meaning the poor had little to no rights, and slavery was also part of the society. It was not until Solon, an Athenian lawmaker and poet, led the way to democracy in the 8th century BC and

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture