Chapter 4: Classical Civilization in the Mediterranean: Greece and Rome Flashcards

Terms Definitions
Alexandria
One of many cities of that name founded by Alexander the Great; site of ancient Mediterranean's greatest library; center of literary studies (Alexandria, Egypt).
Aristotle
Greek philosopher; teacher of Alexander the Great; knowledge based on observation of phenomena in material world.
Augustus Caesar
Name given to Octavian following his defeat of Mark Anthony and Cleopatra; first emperor of Rome
Carthage
Originally a Phoenician colony in northern Africa; became a major port and commercial power in the western Mediterranean; fought the Punic Wars with Rome for dominance of the western Mediterranean.
Cicero
Conservative Roman senator; Stoic philosopher; one of great orators of his day; killed in reaction to assassination of Julius Caesar.
Constantine
Roman emperor from 312 to 337 C.E.; established second capital at Constantinople; attempted to use religious force of Christianity to unify empire spiritually.
Consuls
Two chief executives or magistrates of the Roman Republic; elected by an annual assembly dominated by aristocracy.
Corinthian
Along with Doric and Ionian, distinct style of Hellenistic architecture; the most ornate of the three styles.
Cyrus the Great
Established massive Persian empire by 550 B.C.E.; successor state to Mesopotamian empires.
Direct Democracy
Literally rule of the people; as interpreted in Athens, all decisions emanated from popular assembly without intermediation of elected representatives.
Diocletian
Roman emperor from 284 to 305 C.E.; restored later empire by improved administration and tax collection.
Doric
Along with Ionian and Corinthian, distinct style of Hellenistic architecture; the least ornate of the three styles.
Hannibal
Great Carthaginian general during second Punic War; successfully invaded Italy but failed to conquer Rome; finally defeated at Battle of Zama.
Hellenistic Period
That culture associated with the spread of Greek influence as a result of Macedonian conquests; often seen as the combination of Greek culture with eastern political forms.
Iliad and Odyssey
Greek epic poem attributed to Homer but possibly the work of many authors; defined God and human nature that defined Greek myth.
Ionic
Along with Doric and Corinthian, distinct style of Hellenistic architecture; more ornate than Doric but less than Corinthian.
Julius Caesar
Roman general responsible for conquest of Gaul; brought army back to Rome and overthrew republic; assassinated in 44 B.C.E. by conservative senators.
Philip II of Macedon
Ruled Macedon from 359 to 336 B.C.E.; founder if centralized kingdom; later conquered rest of Greece, which was subjected to Macedonian authority.
Peloponnesian Wars
Wars from 431 to 404 B.C.E. between Athens and Sparta for dominance in southern Greece; resulted in Spartan victory, but failure to achieve political unification of Greece.
Pericles
Athenian political leader during 5th century B.C.E; guided development of Athenian empire; died during early stages of Peloponnesian.
Plato
Greek philosopher; knowledge based on consideration of ideal form of government based on abstract principles in which philosophers ruled.
Polis
City-state form of government; typical of Greek political organization from 800 to 400 B.C.E. (pl.poleis).
Punic Wars
Fight between Rome and Carthage to establish dominance in the western Mediterranean; won by Rome after three separate conflicts.
Roman Republic
The balance constitution of Rome from c.510 to 47 B.C.E; featured an aristocratic senate, a panel of magistrates, and several popular assemblies.
Senate
Assembly of roman aristocrats; advised on policy within the republic; one of the early elements of the roman constitution.
Socrates
Athenian philosopher of later 5th century B.C.E.; tutor of Plato; urged rational reflection of moral decisions; condemned to death for corrupting minds of Athenian young.
Sophocles
Greek writer of tragedies; author of Oedipus Rex.
Stoics
Hellenistic group of philosophers emphasized inner moral independence cultivated by strict discipline of the body and personal bravery.
Zoroastrianism
Animist religion that saw material existence as battle between forces of good and evil; stressed the importance of moral choice; righteous lived on after death in "House of Song"; chief religion of Persian Empire.
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