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University of Toronto St. George
Dimitri Nakassis

The Dark Age: The Dark Age, occurring during the years 1200 800 BC, is a term used to describe the years of destruction and social reformatting in the Iron Age. The beginning of the Dark Age was marked with the movements of people all over the ancient world, the fall of states such as Mycenae and the Hittites, the burnings of great cities such as Knossos, and death of thousands, and pure economic chaos, although the causes remain unclear. By 1000 BC, the population of Greece was reduced to a third of what it had once been 300 years prior. By 900 BC, however, Greece was beginning to rebuild its towns and re-establish foreign trade. The Dark Age is significant because it completely restructured Greek society. Agriculture declined, architecture disappeared, and Greeks lost the ability to read and write. The use of Iron was developed extensively during this period, which would affect military styles and agricultural practices for the centuries to come. Basileus emerged as the leaders of society during the Dark Age. The Archaic Age: The Archaic Age, occurring during the years 800 480 BC, is a term used to describe the years following the Dark Age and prior to the great wars of the 5 th century BC. The Archaic Age was marked by a rise of living standards, equal male citizenship as the principle of social organization, systematized beliefs, reintroduction of literacy, and an intellectual revolution. It was during the Archaic Age that ordinary citizens began to challenge the rights of any man, and the basileis and oligarchies eventually declined as Greek democracy emerged. The Archaic Age is historically significant because it was during this time that the Greeks first began to organize their poleis into democracies, setting them apart from their neighbours. Aristocrats lost their power over common citizens. It was also during this Age that hoplite warfare emerged, which would play a major role in the outcomes of both the Persian Wars and the Peloponnesian Wars. --Hoplite: Hoplites were heavy infantry man, emerging in the Archaic Age of Greece. The hoplite wore 50-70 lbs of bronze armour and carried a spear that was up to 8 ft. long. The hoplite was distinguished by his unique shield, which was rounded, very heavy, and covered only his left side. Hoplites therefore had to stand in phalanxes, arranging themselves shoulder to shoulder so that each hoplite shielded the man to his right, and was shielded by the man to his left. As long as the hoplite phalanx maintained formation, it presented the enemy with an unbroken wall of bronze shields many ranks deep and a forest of deadly spear tips. Hoplite warfare is historically significant because it played a vital role in the Persian Wars. The Persians did not use hoplite warfare and were often overwhelmed by such strategy. It is also significant because it reflects the rising standards of living for Greek citizens, because they had to pay for their own armour and shields, which was very expensive. www.notesolution.com
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