Greece and Rome Chapter Four ancient civilizations bok outline.
The civilizations of Greece and Rome rivaled those of India and China in cultural richness and their effect on world history. Their institutions and values reverberated in the later histories of the Middle East and Europe and Europe’s colonies around the world. The study of classical Mediterranean civilization is complicated because it includes Greek and then Roman political, social, and economic institutions, which were sometimes shared but often unique. The Persian Tradition. Greeks and Romans had contacts with and were influenced to some degree by the large Persian Empire and its descendants. The Persians absorbed many of the attributes of earlier Mesopotamian societies. Zoroastrianism, an early monotheistic religion, came from within the empire. After being toppled by the Greek leader Alexander the Great, another empire arose—the Sassanid—during Rome’s imperial era.
Patterns of Greek and Roman History. The rise of the dynamic city-states of classical Greece began around 800 B.C.E., reaching a high point in the fifth century B.C.E. with the leadership of the Athenian Pericles. The next major era came under the expansionist Alexander who briefly united Greece and the Persian Empire. The legacy of the combination of the two civilizations was called Hellenism. Rome’s development as a republic began as Hellenism waned. As Rome gained more territory by challenging regional powers and lesser developed cultures, it grew into an empire.
Greek and Roman Political Institutions. Greece and Rome featured an important variety of political forms. Both tended to emphasize aristocratic rule but there were significant examples of democratic elements as well. Politics was very important in the classical Mediterranean civilizations and offer similarities to Confucian values, yet the variety of political forms reminds the historian of India. There was no single Greek political style, but democracy is the...
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