Class Notes (806,893)
Canada (492,508)
Lecture 2

TA Notes Week 2.docx

8 Pages
Unlock Document

Western University
Classical Studies
Classical Studies 1000
Christopher Brown

1 CS 1000 – Week 2 Lecture 1 September 16, 2013 Archaeology • Archaeology involves the physical remains of ancient society (ruins and material culture) • There are many different kinds of archaeological evidence  sites (things rooted in places), architecture, painting (on vases and walls), sculpture, and jewellery Basic Principles ofArchaeology • The deeper into a hole in the ground you go, the further into the past you go • In excavations you can isolate bands within the dirt that represents different periods and phases of development, this is called stratigraphy. • There are archaeological sites all over the Mediterranean Sea (Italy, Greece,Asia Minor etc.) but few are fully excavated because it is a very long and difficult process • Famous ruins: see image slides ofAthens, Greece with the Roman temple of Olympian Zeus, the acropolis, and the agora o Problem: people usually choose to settle and live in places for specific reasons and many areas are still inhabited by those people today because of the same reasons. (ex. access to water, fertile land, etc.)  Continuous Habitation: modern buildings cover so much of the history of that area (ex.Athens and Rome) that it is difficult to dig in many areas • Even beneath the ancient cities there are older areas of that place (ex. Roman forum is still there today but has layers of older times underneath it) • Sometimes there are important sites that were abandoned by inhabitants (ex. Ephesus was a port city off the coast ofAsia Minor but inhabitants continued to get malaria so the city was abandoned; time buried the city but archaeologists were able to excavate part of the city • Archaeology is important because sometimes it gives us information on the day- to-day lives of the Greeks or Romans  monumental buildings (ex. The Parthenon or the Colosseum) survive but homes and other objects which can show us the personal lives of the people are difficult to find • Pompeii was a minor Roman town built in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius but was destroyed in 79 AD o The volcano covered the whole city in pumice and it was excavated and gives us great information about the Romans • Time also hurts antiquities (ex. Kouros statue)  most of the time these are not attempted to be restored because a lot of the time they are restored wrong and can be misrepresented 2 • Some examples survive in full (ex. Bronze Zeus from the Classical Period which was found in the sea but we cannot be sure if it is Zeus or Poseidon because he is missing something in his hand so we are not sure whether it is Zeus with a thunderbolt or Poseidon with his trident) • Prima PortaAugustus: like the kouros statue shows us that when we think of antiquity we put into the past what we have today. Statues such as this were not white marble statues at all but we know that they were painted (the Parthenon was painted and not the colour it is today) o This shows us that we have to realize that over time what we find pleasing in art and architecture changes over time • Pottery: early on the Greeks started makes vessels used for various purposes (ex. See slide of the wine vase used at the symposium) but they can also tell us what was important to the Greeks (burials, the gods, social interaction with a symposium etc.) • Seal Ring (slide): three female figures who may be goddesses • Each piece of evidence comes together to form the construct of antiquity Art and Text Combined • Stele Slide (grave marker): parents put up a grave marker with an older child on the left and her brother on the right and she is offering him a small bird and there is Greek on the top with a small poem o Because archaeology is looking into the ground, a lot of what we have has to do with burial and funerary rites The BronzeAge: The Minoans and Mycenaeans • This period gets called “Pre-history” because “History” is thought to be what we know because of historical texts (and in this period we have no direct textual evidence) • Minoans lived on Crete (an island in the southern Mediterranean) and flourished first (not Greek speakers) and the Mycenaeans flourished on the mainland (Greek speakers) • 1 millennium = a period of 1000 years. Plural = millennia Historical Framework Paleolithic Period before 70,000 BCE “Old Stone” Period Neolithic Period 6000-3000 BCE “New Stone” Period BronzeAge 3000-1150 BCE 1150 = Fall of Troy 3 Historical Period 1150 BCE –AD 476 476 = Fall of the Roman Empire • The further back we go, the numbers of the dates before more vague but as time progresses historians can be more precise • After the BronzeAge, the Greeks move into the rest of mainland Greece andAsia Minor Paleolithic Period (ca. 70,000 BCE) • Evidence for habitation in the Greek world. Evidence is restricted to showing that the people were there, does not give us information about social relations. • Likely that this was a hunting-gathering society (i.e. no cultivation of vegetables and the domestication of livestock) which moved around a lot to follow food supply  this means that monumental architecture was not built so all that is left are fragments of tools and weapons Neolithic Period (ca. 6000-3000 BCE) • There is evidence for the beginning of agricultural cultivation, the domestication of animals, and the use of textiles (evidence of tools for the production of textiles) • This means that there were permanent settlements although it is not certain how many there were. o  There were certain requirements for towns (must be up high, near water and protected by the landscape somehow) • There was perhaps a development of a social structure • Figurines found that may suggest the worship of a female fertility (or earth-) goddess and her ithyphallic male consort (since the male figures are smaller than the female figures which shows their relative importance) o Ithyphallic = having the penis erect. Used of graphic and sculptural representations o This suggests that this culture had a specific type of religion and belief system Lecture 2 September 18, 2013 • Male nudity is very common in the Greek and Roman world (including the Neolithic period) th • Egyptian god Min (slide) from the 4 millennium BCE shows the same thing • The most common explanation for these types of figures is that they are about fertility but it could also be more about aggression • In the Classical world ofAthens we see that the most common divine presence is Hermes shown as a pillar with a bearded head and a large representation of a 4 phallus  showing that the house is safe and secure and defended by a man (i.e. it has nothing to do with fertility at all) • Cycladic figurines (slide) show female figures; Indo-European speakers were focused on the male gods and the sky while historical Greek religion shows a fusion of these cultural representations Historical Context: The Ancient Near East • In the East before the Greeks there were already established high civilizations (which means it has an elaborate culture, range of social standings, etc) by the time the BronzeAge begins • There are lots of documents and textual evidence which shows a contrast to what we know about the Greek world • What was the influence on the Greek world?  This is difficult, scholars are reluctant to say that there was a great amount of influence since Greece had such a high culture that scholars do not want to attribute it to anyone else • Barriers to the transmission of culture: geographical, difference of languages etc o One way that could have a great influence is art through trade goods o (Ex. Epic poetry with similes comparing two things. It uses the lion a lot which is a symbol that is very common in the Greek world but the Greeks would not have come into contact with lions but they would have been them through representations in art) • The Greeks are aware that there are non-Greek speakers (Barbarian means anyone who does not speak Greek) Egypt • Egypt had an elaborate high culture by this time and they were trading with the rd Greeks as early as the 3 millennium BCE (scholars know this through excavations) • What other kinds of influences came to the Greek world from Egypt?  some see Egypt as the source of key aspects of Greek culture (ex. Pantheon of 12 gods exists in Egypt just as in Greece) • There is a clear Egyptian influence on early Greek art (especially in representing male figures) Br
More Less

Related notes for Classical Studies 1000

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.