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CLA204H1 - Lecture 01 - Introduction to Mythology.docx

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Vichi Ciocani

1 CLA204H1 – Lecture 01 – Introduction to Mythology Monday, January 7, 2013 Instructor: Vichi Ciocani Class Time: MWF 11-12 Textbooks (required): Classical Mythology (can use 8 edition instead of the 9 one) Test Dates: - February 8 – short answers, MC’s - March 15 – essay - Final exam – combination of both tests Office Hours: MWF 10-10:50 and by appointment; LMB124 Email: [email protected] Greek and Roman Myth 1. Background – Ancient Greece and Rome. Historical timeline. Geography o Greek mythology and its relevance; close relation to Roman mythology 2. What is a myth and what do we do with it? Theories of Myth o Myth and its modern relevancy o Greek myth influenced art and literature Today’s lecture: - Rough historical outline and geography - Theory of myth o Issues surrounding the definition of myth NB – all slides are posted on BB after each lecture Time Periods in Greece Period/Age Year Neolithic Age 7000-3000 BC Bronze Age 3000-1200 BC Early Bronze Age 3000-2100 BC Middle Bronze Age 2100-1600 BC Late Bronze Age 1600-1100 BC Dark Age/Iron Age 1100-700 BC Archaic Period 700-480 BC Classical Period 480-323 BC Hellenistic Period 323-30 BC Roman Period 30 BC – AD 476 Byzantine Period 476 – AD 1453 - Rough time range of Greek history - Archaeological evidence of human life since 7000 BC - Greeks came into the south of the Balkan Peninsula in the early 2d millennium BC o Pre-Indo-Europeans occupied the land of Greece today o The recovery of pre-Greek civilization is important to understand Greek society - Important time periods: o Late Bronze Age – 1600-1100 BC  Has evidence of early writing o Dark Age/Iron Age – 1100-700 BC  The Dark Age is associated with the medieval period and doesn’t have any written sources - Archaic Period – 700-480 BC o Greek myths developed/enriched in oral tradition o Defined by Homer, the 1 Greek poet whose poems have influenced Western culture  The Illiad and The Odyssey – the issue of history: to which extent can we associate such realities in the Archaic and Late Bronze Age periods? - Classical Period – 480-323 BC 2 - Hellenistic Period – 323-30 BC o Use of literature, heavily enriched with myth - Roman Period – 30 BC-AD 476 o Greece was conquered by the Romans, therefore there’s a blend of both cultures - Byzantine Period – 476-AD 1453 o Literary contexts that retell myths o Recordings of myths 1 map (on slides) - Myths are connected to Greece in terms of geographical space - Geography of Greece: o Greece isn’t a large piece of land (it’s less/smaller than England) o Combination of water, land, and islands  Lots of mythology concerning sailing, commerce and inhabited islands  NB – Athens, Peloponnese, Sparta, etc.  Seas : Aegean, Ionian, Mediterranean, Adriatic Time Periods – Rome Time Periods (Event) Year Founding of Rome. The Roman kings 753-509 BC st Roman Republic 509-1 century BC Early Roman Empire 27 BC – AD 284 Late Roman Empire to the Fall of Rome AD 284 – 476 - Greece was conquered by the Romans - Prior to the conquest, the Greeks travelled to the west and conquered those areas, like Sicily (Italy) - Roman history is defined by particular events History and Myth One example of blurred demarcation between history and myth: - The Minoan Civilization o An example demonstrating the connections between history and myth o This civilization developed on the island of Crete The Myth of King Minos of Crete - Married to Pasiphae - Pasiphae and the bull of Poseidon - The Minotaur and the construction of the Labyrinth (labrys “double axe”) - The Sacrifice of seven Athenian youths and seven girls to the Minotaur - Theseus and the thread of Ariadne - Daedalus and his son Icarus - Minos, son of Zeus and married to Pasiphae - Minos wanted to make a sacrifice to Poseidon and so he asked the god for a beautiful bull. However, Minos kept the bull given to him and sacrificed another to Poseidon. As punishment, Poseidon made Pasiphae fall in love with the bull. The Minotaur, the offspring of Pasiphae and the bull, is kept in a labyrinth designed by Daedalus - Minos, in conflict with the Athenians, forces 7 Athenian youths and 7 girls to t
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