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Lecture 19

CLA230 Lecture 19 Notes

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Dimitri Nakassis

CLA230 Lecture 19 Notes Hellenistic World - 323-30 B.C. - socio-economic history rather than political - characteristics of Hellenistic world • a wider Greek world, Hellenism exported – most lasting contribution of Alexander is what had been the Persian Empire – far east • political leadership – major city-states to Macedonian-style monarchies – shift in terms of political leadership • model of Philip and Alexander – at highest levels are more similar to the ruling style of Macedonia than of the local government – example of Ptolemaic Egypt • but city-states still important as a social unit – just not politically relevant • growth of cultural activities – growth of scientific production as well • monarchs have finances to support art and sciences – somewhat a continuation of the tyrants – tyrants were often patrons of the arts • 4 and 5 century B.C. monarchs from Macedon were also patrons of the arts – example of Aristotle tutoring Alexander • theme of the Hellenistic Period – if you are a friend to the king – does not just benefit but also your clients and even your hometown • example of Euripides – goes to Macedonia as an old man to produce plays for the royal court Wider Greek World - splitting up of Alexander’s kingdom into sub-kingdoms - Egyptian kingdom ruled by the Ptolemies – Ptolemy is a former general of Alexander - sub-kingdom of Pergamum comes up later - huge territory is split up - example of kind of things in the Hellenistic Period – site of Ai Khanoum neat the river Oxus - Ai Khanoum • excavated by the French • Greek style city in the middle of current-day Afghanistan • all the hallmarks of a Classical polis – gymnasium, agora, Greek sanctuaries, etc. • likely Greek veterans also lived there – settled after given a grant of land – somewhat a military base • inscription at Ai Khanoum • quote: “These wise sayings of men of former times, the words of famous men, are consecrated at holy Pytho; from there Clearchus copied them carefully, to set them up, shining afar, in the precinct of Cineas. When a child show yourself well behaved…” • Phytho – Delphi • precinct of Cineas – religious precinct • inscribed maxims – copy of Delphic maxims done by Clearchus – example of far-flung nature of the Hellenistic world and the sense of connectedness - connected by Greek identity Hellenistic Monarchies - importance of the king - manifested in various ways - “friends” – group of king associates with political and social sense – trusted agents - not necessarily Macedonian - example of Philip – “friend” from Crete – Niarchus - “friends” become influential and create their own networks - friends of the king acting on behalf of their hometown - kingdom became increasingly seen as a possession - example of Pergamon in 133 B.C. – after the death of the monarch Attalos III, he bequeaths the kingdom to Rome in his will – “gives” his kingdom away like a possession - Euergetism – wealthy individuals who are generous with cities – “good work/deed” – doing good by the people - therefore the generosity is shown to city who in turn show gratitude back to their king – culture of gratitude - model of Hellenistic world after Alexander of Philip – idea of monarchs as “conquerors” - monarchs of the Hellenistic world attempt to portray themselves in this way – conquest - idea of conquest – desire /push to own land like Alexander and Philip – part of the ideology of the Hellenistic kingship Attalids and Pergamon - 241-133 B.C. - Pergamon – brea
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