The Greek World
The Greek civilisation developed on the Balkan Peninsula, the islands of the Aegean Sea and in many coastal areas of the Mediterranean. This civilisation was based on the polis. Poleis were independent city-states. However, they were united by a shared language and religion. The first governments were oligarchies (small groups of aristocrats). Later, in Athens, democracy was introduced and the citizens had a say in government. With the conquests of Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC, Greek culture expanded eastward. As a result, other great civilsations adopted elements of Greek culture.
The culture of the ancient Greeks and Romans is the basis of our western culture. The Greeks were interested in knowledge, art and the organisation of society. Greece was the birthplace of western philosophy, art, the Olympic Games and democracy.
You can learn more and practise doing exercises about Ancient Greek through the following resources.
- CLIL Unit about Ancient Greece by Junta de Andalucía didactic resources
- The Ancient Greece digibook
- The Classic Legacy
The Greek Art is based on harmony and proportion. The Greeks made buildings of great beauty. Furthermore, Greek artists wanted to represent ideal beauty and movement. To do this, they studied the ideal proportions of the human body and developed the canon. Finally, Greece is the birthplace of rational thought. The Greeks were the first people to use human reason to explain complex phenomena. Greek philosophers looked for explanations for the mysteries of life through dialogue and reflection.