History Mid-Term Review Lectures 2-4 & 7
Lecture 2: Who`s Barbarian I
Classical Era (Antiquity):
x Major second-wave civilizations during the thousand years between 500 B.C.E and 500
history, a term that highlights enduring traditions that have lasted into modern times and
persist still in the twenty-first century.
x Confucianism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, and Christianity all took shape during this
x The classical era is derived largely from the experience of Eurasian peoples, for it was on
the outer rim of that huge continent that the largest and most influential civilizations took
shape ± in China, India, Persia and the Mediterranean basin.
Hellenistic Era (323-30B.C.E):
x The Hellenistic period describes the era which followed the conquests of Alexander the
Great. During this time, Greek cultural influence and power was at its zenith in Europe
and Asia. It is often considered a period of transition, sometimes even of decline or
decadence, between the brilliance of the Greek Classical Era and the emergence of the
x Usually taken to begin with the death of Alexander in 323 BC, the Hellenistic period may
either be seen to end with the final conquest of the Greek heartlands by Rome in 146 BC;
or the final defeat of the last remaining successor-state to Alexander's empire, the
Ptolemaic kingdom of Egypt in 31/30 BC.
x The Hellenistic period was characterized by a new wave of colonists which established
Greek cities and kingdoms in Asia and Africa.
Cyrus (r.557-530 B.C.E:
x The founder of the Persian Empire under the Achaemenid dynasty.
x It was under his own rule that the empire embraced all previous civilized states of the
ancient Near East, expanded vastly and eventually conquered most of Southwest Asia
and much of Central Asia, parts of Europe and Caucasus.
x From the Mediterranean Sea and the Hellespont in the west to the Indus River in the east,
to create the largest empire the world had yet seen.