Week 11.Nov 26 and 28.docx - Lecture notes of Nov...

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Lecture notes of Nov. 26–28: Week 11: Greek Civilization Overview of the week’s topics • The Persian Wars • The “Athenian Century”: 479–404 B.C. • The Peloponnesian War: 431–404 B.C. The Persian Wars: 499–479 B.C. Pomeroy pp. 209–227. See also on Brightspace the “Persian Wars” module ● Overview of the Persian Wars: three main campaigns - the Ionian Revolt: 499 B.C. to 494 or 493 B.C.: pp. 209–213 - the Marathon campaign: 490 B.C.: pp. 213–218 - the invasion of King Xerxes: 480–479 B.C.: pp. 219–227 ● In the Xerxes campaign of 480–479, four major battles. Maps on pp. 224 and 204 (Attica)— - sea battle of Artemisium: a marginal Persian victory but including substantial losses to the Persian navy: 480 B.C. - land battle of Thermopylae: a Persian victory but with lasting cultural effects in the West: pp. 223–225 - sea battle of Salamis: a total Greek victory. The battle destroyed most of the Persian navy and basically saved Greece from conquest: pp. 225–226 - land battle of Plataea, spring 479 B.C.: a total Greek victory that destroyed the Persian army contingent that had remained behind: pp. 225–226 Overview: Athens: 479–404 B.C. Pomeroy Chapters 6–8. See also on Brightspace the modules for “Ostracism”, “Delian League” and “Thucydides”. ● These 75 years produced “the Athenian Century”: the major part of 400s B.C. when Athens was by far the richest and most powerful Greek city and was the “cultural capital” of Greece, like Paris in the 1920s or New York City in the 1950s on the world stage. To these 75 years, and to Athens specifically, belong many of the Greek achievements that still influence us today, including— – the stage tragedies of Athenian playwrights Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides, with their brooding questions about the gods, human destiny, and the limits of human knowledge and strength – architectural splendours such as the Parthenon at Athens – in sculpture, in bronze or marble, the perfection of the representation of the human form, epitomized in work by the Athenian sculptors Myron (Pomeroy pp. 252–253) and Phidias – achievements in painting, particularly by Polygnotus of Thasos. Polygnotus was active at Athens, living there as a “metic” ( metoikos : “resident alien”), and he is typical of the talented artists and thinkers who flocked to Athens to find lucrative work and to contribute to the society. Pomeroy pp. 255 and 257 (on Polygnotus) and page 274 on metics at Athens. –the beginnings of history-writing, pioneered by Herodotus of Halicarnassus (circa 485–420 B.C.), who evidently lived at Athens for a while: pp. 291–293. Herodotus’ successor was the supremely factual and reliable Thucydides (circa 460–400 B.C.), the Athenian chronicler of the Peloponnesian War who was the best 1

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