2. Review: Being Greek The ancient Greeks spoke the same language. They believed in the same gods. They shared a common heritage. They perceived themselves as Greeks. The ancient Greeks referred to themselves, however, as citizens of their hometown - their city-state. Each city-state (polis) had its own personality, goals, laws and customs. Ancient Greeks were very loyal to their city-state.
3. Athens Athenians thought of themselves as the shining star of the Greek city-states. They were famed for their literature, poetry, drama, theatre, schools, buildi ngs, and government. Athenians were famed for their commitment to the arts and sciences. The Greeks believed that each city-state in ancient Greece had a god or a goddess in charge of it, their special patron. For Athens, the patron was Athena, goddess of wisdom. Perhaps because Athena was their patron, Athenians put a great deal of emphasis on education.
4. Education in Athens Girls learned at home from their mothers. They learned how to run a home, and how to be good wives and mothers. Boys were educated quite differently. Until age 6 or 7, boys were taught at home by their mothers. After this, they were sent to school everyday, where they learned: drama, public speaking, reading, writing, math, and perhaps even how to play the flute. Science, government. At 18, they attended two years of military school. There was just cause for Athens to be proud of its system of education for its citizens.
5. Government in Athens:Democracy Each city-state chose its own form of government. Most Greek city-states were ruled by kings. In Athens, citizens (the men) met each week to discuss problems. They worked on solutions. The men of Athens experimented with government. For about 100 years, Athens was a direct democracy!
6. Democracy Over 2400 years ago, the famous Greek general, Pericles, said, "It is true that we (Athenians) are called a democracy, for the administration is in the hands of the many and not the few, with equal justice to all alike in their private disputes." Only in Athens, and only for a short time, "rule by many" meant that all citizens had to be willing to take an active part in government. That was the law. Each year, 500 names were drawn from all the citizens of Athens. Those 500 citizens had to serve for one year as the law makers of ancient Athens. All citizens of Athens were required to vote on any new law that this body of 500 citizens created. One man, one vote, majority ruled. Women, children, and slaves were not citizens, and thus could not vote.
7. Sparta Remember the Dorian people who ruled ancient Greece during the Grecian Dark Ages? Sparta began as a small village of Dorian people. Life was very different in ancient Sparta than it was in the rest of ancient Greek city-states. The Spartans were proud, fierce, capable warriors. No great works of art came out of Sparta. But the Spartans, both men and women, were tough, and the Greeks admired strength.
8. A Warriors Oligarchy Spartas government was an oligarchy. The people were ruled by a small group of warriors. The Spartans spoke Greek, wrote Greek, thought of themselves as Greeks, but they were different. In most of the other Greek city-states, the goal of education was to create a strong citizen of that city-state. In Sparta, the goal of education was to create a strong warrior.
9. Building the Fighting Machine All of the ancient Greeks were warriors, but Spartas warriors were legendary. In Sparta, boys were taken away from their parents at age 7. They lived a harsh and often brutal life in the soldiers barracks. Children were often whipped in front of groups of other Spartans, including their parents, but they were not allowed to cry out in pain.
10. Unorthodox Education Spartan children learned to be cunning, to lie, to cheat, to steal, and how to get away with it! As adults, Spartan men did not live with their families. They visited their families, but men lived in the soldiers barracks.
11. Independent Women Girls went to school too, to learn how to fight. They lived at home during training. Their training was not as harsh and the boys, but it was harsh enough. Sparta women were warriors. As adults, Spartan women, unlike women in the rest of Greek world, had a great deal of freedom. Many ran businesses. Sparta women were free to move about and visit neighbors without permission from their husbands. How would they get permission? The men were often off fighting.
12. Ask Yourselves Recall: What were Athenians famed for? Explain: What is the difference between an oligarchy and a democracy? What does rule by many mean? Analyze: Why do you think Spartans were so interested in raising the best warriors? Why do you think kids were raised in such harsh conditions? Compare: What was the main difference between womens education in Sparta and Athens?
13. Bibliography Mr Donn. (n.d.). Sparta. Retrieved 07 20, 2012, from Mr Donn: http://greece.mrdonn.org/sparta.html Mr Donn. (n.d.). Athens. Retrieved 07 2012, 2012, from Mr Donn: http://greece.mrdonn.org/athens.html Images taken from Google.