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Lecture 6

TA Notes Week 6.docx

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Classical Studies
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Classical Studies 1000
Christopher Brown

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1 CS 1000 – Week 6 Lecture 1 October 16, 2013 Architecture • When we talk about architecture, we usually focus on one kind of structure: temples. o Houses were typically very modest whereas Romans built a wider range of public and private building. The monumental architecture projects of the Greeks consisted mainly of temples. • Temples were typically built in places where the Greeks felt there was something special and somehow dear to the gods (ex. Cape Sounion at the southernmost point ofAttica. The last and first thing sailors would see is this temple to Poseidon). • When do gods get temples in certain places? o Asacred place in the Classical Period was probably a place that was sacred in pre-history and there was ongoing worship there. o In theArchaic Period, temples began to be built around them. Often, these places became sites of modern churches). o There is Continuity of religion. • The building of temples to the gods remained a priority for Greek communities. • Greek temples take one form (even though they vary in size and decoration): o There is a sacred centre with an altar and a representation of the god surrounded by walls and then a colonnade of pillars/columns (these pillars perform an important structural function to support the roof). • The columns of temples were also decorated. There are three types of pillars, called ‘orders’. These ‘orders’represent a lasting contribution to western architecture and help define the classical style. o (1) Doric o (2) Ionic: top of the column has two scrolls o (3) Corinthian: these have leaves at the top • Slide:Acolumn has a capital (from Latin caput which means ‘head’), a shaft which comes in two types: (a) made up of one piece; (b) or Drums (smaller units that allow one to build a smaller column as the builder wants) o On the top there is a roof structure  there is often very elaborate sculpture (called pedimental sculpture) and on the areas along the sides (metopes) there is decoration as well  In the decoration you often see civic ideology expressed • Slide: Ionic column with a capital. These capitals look like two scrolls. o Slide: showing the capital of an Ionic column and the base (no drums shown) • Slide: Parthenon Gallery: here there are two Doric columns; this gallery houses some of the decorations from the Parthenon on the acropolis. 2 o Pericles built the Parthenon after the victory against the Persians. • Slide:Acropolis in Athens: pollution is destroying the temple; the acropolis itself has been used for a variety of purposes. It was used as a Christian church and then th in the 15 century it was used as a place to store explosives which exploded and it seriously damaged the Parthenon. o Most of the sculpture, however, is in London and this has raised a great dispute. Lord Elgin took these sculptures to London (hence why they are sometimes called the ‘Elgin Marbles’) and he got them from the permission of the occupying Turks and not the Greeks. The Greeks want them back but the British resist this because they say that there is a good place to see them in the British Museum and there isn’t a good place to display them in Athens. The Greeks have recently built one of the best museums beside the acropolis. The odd angle of the top floor makes it exactly parallel to the Parthenon. They have some of the metopes and then white copies of the ones that were taken (this is a political point). • Slide: Parthenon. You can see the open colonnade around the center and the places where the metopes should be and the pedimental sculptures once were. Inside there would have been a gigantic image ofAthena made from gold and ivory. This statue is long gone as it would have been melted down for its valuable metal. This statue was a symbol of the god whose name is connected with the city of Athens. • Slide: sculpture on a metope with a man riding a horse. The metopes of the Parthenon are taken up largely with elite youth riding horses (also showing a great connection with the army). • Slide: Metopes from a temple at Selinunte. We don’t know what god was worshipped in this temple but we have the metopes still. The content of the metopes have to do with myths (ex.Actaeon who was a hunter and devotee of Artemis. He saw her bathing with her female followers. This was bad because she was a virgin and she is connected with the maturation of young girls.Actaeon is transformed into a stag byArtemis and he is torn apart by his own hunting dogs). • Temple of Zeus at Olympia: this is where the Olympic Games were held. This is the most famous temple outside of Athens. This temple (and all others) are part of a larger context. There was always a precinct around the temple which was sacred to the god and in order to approach it one must go through ritual purifications. There would have been many people around the precinct doing various things (similar to athletics and the Olympic games there would have been crowds of people there). o Slide: Remains of the temple today; raised base foundation is left and not much else. o Slide: Statue inside the temple: writers tell us about this site when they visited. We know that the temple was standard (approach place, open colonnade, sacred center with the representation of the god, and an altar where sacrifices were performed). 3  Description of the statue tells us that it was very large, seated in a kingly posture, holding Victory (Nike) in his hand probably because the Olympic Games were here, he hold a scepter and an eagle (a bird sacred to him).  The front of the temple was decorated with a series of sculptures that evoke myths that concern his sons (ex. Heracles). • Slide: The gods image would preside over sacrifices and the altar would be right in front of the statue. Sacrifice was the central act of Greek religion. The animals would be led in procession to the altar and this would have been a public event. The Persian Wars • The people in theArchaic Period were prospering and it was inevitable that there would be threats. • The Persian Empire – expanding their empire and subordinating others so that they could grow. This empire was growing towards the Greek world. Most of the Greeks didn’t think that they could withstand the Persian force. o They eventually did and because they did the Greek sense of themselves was transformed. • We will look at Greek warfare, then the main participants (Athenians and Spartans were the main resisters against the Persians) and then we will talk about the actual conflict. Greek Warfare • Slide: Heraclitus quote: War is shared and Conflict is Justice. This shows that war was not regrettable to the Greeks but it was a reality of living. o Conflict is Justice: Greek ideas about Justice were that Justice is a process of exchange and things work out towards a kind of balance. Heraclitus thought that war drives this exchange.  All things comes to pass in accordance with conflict  war is not a social phenomenon but an expression of a process that drives the nature of reality. o Heraclitus also said that “War is the father of all and king of all”  the language here suggests Zeus. Here War personified (Greek polemos). War makes some people gods and some people slaves. This sentiment comes from the Iliad where the strong survive and the weak are destroyed.  Gods vs. Men: He might be alluding to the tendency in Greek society to worship heroes. In the fifth century, ‘hero’means a dead person who is worshipped in his grave. The Greeks thought that 4 heroes had powers in their graves and they can affect people. Perhaps ‘gods’here means ‘heroes’.  Free vs. Slave: War in the Greek world leaves people in two distinct places. When one fights an enemy you must make sure you won’t have to fight them again so you either kill everyone or enslave them. • War was a persistent feature of Greek society. o War was a basic fact of life. • As conflicts grew in scale, large power blocks emerged so the groups at war became larger and the stakes became larger. • Because war was such a basic fact of life, the needs of war shaped key aspects of society, namely institutions, society, and economy. • Military function and social and political status were very closely linked  found in Homer and Aristotle. o Accounts in part for the exclusion of women in political and public life  public life and citizenship was about warfare. Women didn’t fight so they were excluded from the public life because this is a world shaped by war. • Victory in war was seen as indicative of divine favor  connection to religion.
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