Ancient Greece to Ancient Rome - the Comparison

Topics: Ancient Rome, Roman Empire, Ancient Greece Pages: 3 (952 words) Published: March 18, 2011
This paper will focus on three key points shared by both cultures which will help demonstrate the relationship between these two civilizations: religion, the arts and the state. Ancient Greek and Roman civilization left a permanent stamp on history, including the areas: politics and the state, art and literature, religion and philosophy. Yet, if it were not for the Roman civilization that emerged around and eventually swallowed them, we might not know a great deal about the contribution that the Greek had to society. When Rome conquered Greece, Romans were impressed with many of the concepts of their culture and society which they readily adopted. For example, the Romans adopted the Greek system of education with a focus on disciplines that are still embodied today. Polytheism is a large similarity between Greece and Rome, but Rome would eventually experiment with monotheism. The origins of modern religion and festivals are to be found in the Greek and Roman religious rites and practices. In Rome, religious cults celebrated rites and mythology and were devoted to the eclectic and cosmopolitan Roman outlook regarding religion. Like the Greeks, the Romans initially accepted polytheism and many of the Gods in the Greek Pantheon were adopted by the Romans though their names were changed. For example, the god of the seas was Poseidon in Greece but Neptune in Rome, while the Greek god of wine, Dionysus was known as Bacchus in Rome. Comedy and tragedy began in religious festivals honoring Dionysus (_Western Civilizations Beyond Boundaries_, p. 86), while Bacchus was celebrated in similar festivals in Rome. The Romans even went a step further by sponsoring numerous priestly committees, or colleges, to secure the peace of the gods. Any by establishing elected pontiffs, with a chief pontiff, (_pontifex maximus)_as the head of the state clergy. The Romans eventually allowed priests to interpret the law on the theory...
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