Greek History


Late Bronze/Mycenaean Age

1600 BC - 1100 BC

Mycenae and other sites become power centers; small kingdoms emerge
shaft graves and tholos tombs
Linear B writing

Early Dark Ages

1100 bc - 900 bc

period of decline after collapse of Mycenaean palace system

Late Dark Age/Geometric Per.

900 bc - 700 bc

Population increase; new settlements; trade and manufacturing increase

Archaic Period

700 BC - 480 BC

The polis replaced the chieftain political system in most of the Greek world (though the basileus didn't completely disappear).
There was a sharp increase in population which lead to a rise in the founding of colonies to try and solve the problem of a lack of land and to expant trade and goods production.
The reintroduction of written language came about after the dark ages.
Hopelite Army and the Phalanx became more numerous.
Tricia Weyland

Classical Period

480 bc - 323 bc

Drama refers to the comedy and tragedy plays that originated in Athens. Originally, meant to honor Dionysus.
Regarded as being the “father of history”, Herodotus documented his travels and provided details on Persian Wars.
Democracy comes from demos 'the people of a country' + krateo 'rule'. Democracy gave power to the people and was a radical change to tyrants and rulers leading a country. Even at this time it was still an evolving process.
Pericles was an Athenian general who lead Athens between the Persian Wars to the Peloponnesian War. Promoted art, literature, and democracy.

-Jeremy Caplin

Hellenistic Period

323 bc - 30 ad

This period-coming directly after the death of Alexander the Great in 323 bc-marks the widely accepted beginning of the downfall of the Hellenistic (Greek/Macedonian) dominance throughout the known world. Previously at it's pinnacle with Alexander the Great at the tip of the charge to spread Hellenistic greatness throughout the world, his death left a dull point of weary and homesick soldiers. The reason for this falling apart (apart from Alexander's death) comes mostly as a result of the Rise of the Roman-Empire. It is seen to end as the last of the “sub-kingdoms” of Alexander’s shattered empire, the Ptolemaic Kingdom in Egypt, fell to Roman invasion in 30 ad.
-Charlie Stokes

Social and Political Events

Construction of the Acropolis

1200 B.C.

The Acropolis of a community was found to be an essential part of protecting the city of Attica and its citizens. It is referred to as the, "high part of the city" (p.28 Garland), which constituted that the highest point of the deme was protecting their stability and having the higher ground. Originally, it was constructed to provide safety for the palace and sanctuaries. Attica unfortunately endured the destruction of their acropolis by the Persians in the early 5th century.

Alex Pyle

Fall of Troy

1150 B.C.

After a long and difficult struggle described in the ancient epic “The Iliad,” Troy falls to forces allied with the Greek leader Agamemnon. Although the accuracy of specific details as described by Homer are in question, it is generally understood that a conflict between Troy and other Greek city-states did in fact take place, and the destruction of the city has been estimated to have taken place around 1150 BC. A significant factor in the accuracy of the Iliad is the large amount of time that stories about this conflict circulated in oral form until finally being written down.
-Andrew Griesman

First Messenian War

743 BC - 710 BC

The Messenian War was faught between Messenia and Sparta. The war lasted about 20 years and the Spartans were the victors.
Helots- were slaves, they were tied to their own land, also out numbered Spartans 7 to 1.
The first Messenian War started and ended in the 8th century but the exact dates vary.

Maison Ducharme


700 BC

Although we are not sure of the exact date when slavery as a practice was initially started, we know that it was widespread by the middle of the 7th century B.C. with evidence that even. that it was a practice extending even in the end of the 8th century B.C. It became so common place in the 7th century B.C. that even the lowest tier of society were said to have them (Garland, p. 70).

Domestic Slaves

700 BC

Both men and women were found to be significant source of slave laborers up to the 7th century, especially in Greece. The division of these slaves was often determined between skills and size of the labor force in the domain in which they were accompanying. Women often beheld the tasks of producing textiles with the spindle or laboring in the millstone grinding grain. There has not been significant evidence of grueling agriculture labor done by this labor force. Once slaves were obtained in the Athenian society, they were to be sworn in by oath to guarantee their protection in their community while providing services for whom they were under control. In return this was said to provide the protection of the heart god, Hestia. In return they were often protected against abuse and would develop strong relationships with their master, which often would be recognized later in their life away from laboring. It was often seen that starvation and neglecting slaves of hygienic privileges was conducted for misbehavior. Runaways in return became branded with iron rods and their testimony in a judicial matter was only taken account for under the circumstances of torture.
Alex Pyle

Battle of Hysiae

699 BC

Battle between Argos and Sparta, where Argos defeats Sparta. It is said that Sparta's defeat may have been a reason for the Messenian's revolting. Further this would tie into the start of the Second Messenian war. This defeat stoped the Spartans from further expanding their military rule.,r:1,s:0&tx=47&ty=52
Maison Ducharme

Second Messenian War

685 B.C. - 668 B.C.

Conflict between the helots of Messenia and the Spartans. This war was started as a revolt of the Messenian helots in order to gain freedom. With aid and support from Tyrtaeus, the Spartan army was able to defeat the Messenians and re-established their helot status.

-Jeremy Caplin

Hoplite Phalanx

650 B.C.

The Hoplite was an armored soldier in ancient Greece. He was one who would defend his polis. These armored soldiers would do battle with their opposition by fighting in a specific battle formation. This formation was called the phalanx. The phalanx was constructed by the group of hoplites gathering themselves in lines, standing shoulder to shoulder with their comrades. This was advantageous to the hoplites because not only was each individual protected by his armor, but also by the man's shield on his right. This allowed the hoplites to minimize casualties and more effectively assault their opponents.
Each hoplite carried a large spear, and a sword for stabbing their opposition. In an average battle between two Greek city states, each side would form into a phalanx and collide with each other.
"When the opposing lines collided, the ranks behind shoved against those in front- the maneuver was called the pushing" (Pomeroy 83).
Something unique about the hoplites is that they fit the bill for all their own weapons and armor. This made being a hoplite very expensive.

-Ryan Steele

Cylonian Affair

632 B.C.

An Athenian noble named Cylon attempted a rebellion in 632 BC where his father-in-law was tyrant. The oracle at Delphi had advised Cylon to seize Athens during a festival of Zeus, which Cylon understood to mean the Olympics. Unfortunately for Cylon, the coup was opposed, and Cylon and his supporters took refuge in Athena's temple on the Acropolis.

Tucker Vogt


600 BC

Probably began many years before, not sure exact dates. The word epikleros means someone attached to the estate. More often then not this word was given to a woman whose father had no sons to give his estate/fortune. For example, the father could have had sons who died in wars and didn't have their own sons. Therefore his daughter was "heiress", even though she didn't inherited or own anything. She was obligated to give birth to an heir. After Solon's reform it required epikleros to marry the closes of her fathers relative and they were to have sex at least three times a month. (Pomeroy, p. 180)
-Mindy Ung

Battle of Halys

590 BC - 585 BC

Also known as the Battle of the Eclipse. It took place at the river Hayls on May 25th 590 BCE between Menes and the Lydians. The final battle of a five-year war between Alyattes II of Lydia and Cyaxares of the Medes, the battle ended abruptly due to a solar eclipse. Its believed that the eclipse was perceived as an omen, indicating that the gods wanted the fighting to stop. A truce was arranded soon after the end, and as part of the terms of the agreement, Alyattes’s daughter Aryenis was married to Cyaxares’s son Astyages, and the river Halys was declared to be the border of the two warring nations.
- Tucker Vogt


590 BC

An epikleros was a woman who was basically a placeholder of property. If a man had no son or his son/sons died, leaving no heir, it was up to his daughter to produce an heir to inherit the land. Under Solon's reforms in the 590s, an epikleros was required to marry the closest male relative to her father and have sex at least three times a month to ensure the production of an heir. This marriage was required, and if the two people were already married they'd have to divorce their previous spouses.

Nicole Wamma

Persia/The Persian Empire

550 BC - 330 BC

Persian Empire ruled over a large portion of the ancient world. It was Cyrus and Darius that are given the most credit for expansion and domination of others. At the height of the Persian Empire's power it controlled a bit less
than 5 million miles, or around 8 million km.

The Persian Empire during 520 BCE around the height of it's power.

tricia weyland


519 BCE - 465 BCE

Xerxes was the son of Darius I, and as expected, was his successor. Xerxes ruled from 485-465 BCE. Xerxes started the Second Persian War. Xerxes has a personal guard that was named the "Immortals". One of the most famous battles during the reign of Xerxes was The Battle of Thermopylae. This battle was where three hundred Spartans defended a mountain pass from thousands of Persians, and was famously portrayed in the movie "300", and also the satirical television show "South Park". Xerxes also ruled during the Battle of Salamis where his rashness led to the destruction of a large portion of his army, and then finally total defeat in the spring of 479 BCE by Mardonius.

Xerxes as portrayed in the movie "300"

Xerxes as portrayed in the television show "South Park" with Mrs. Garrison (a reoccurring character) in the background.

Dennis Webster

Harmodius and Aristogeiton

514 BC

Harmodius and Aristogeiton are two symbols of ancient Athenian democracy before the actual installation of democracy in Athens. They plotted an the assassination of Hippias and Hipparchus after Hipparchus insulted Harmodius' sister, claiming she was unchaste. Aristogeiton was previously upset with Hipparchus after making sexual advances on Harmodius. They managed to kill Hipparchus, but Hippias was not harmed until his rule failed and he was overthrown. Harmodius was killed during the assassination and Aristogeiton was tortured to death. They were eternalized in a sculpture by Kritios and Nesiotes
This is the Roman Copy:

  • Charlie Stokes


501 BC

Strategoi were chief generals or army commanders. Starting in 501 BC with Cleisthenes' reforms, there were 10 strategoi of Athens, each elected by his tribe. They could be reelected and their duties involved the control of both land and sea forces. The fact that they were elected points to the increasingly democratic nature of Athens.

Nicole Wamma

The Burning of Sardis

500 BC

After Aristagoras had gained the support of the Athenians, he set his forces and his new allies on an expedition to Sardis with his brother Charopinus in the lead. The Ionians took the city without opposition and forced Artaphernes and his forces to the acropolis whereupon the Ionians began to burn the city. During the raid the temple of the Lydian Goddess Cybebe took flame and burnt down. Afterwards the Athenians refused to continue in the revolt and returned to Athens. This battle, for the most part, set Darius against the Athenians and caused him to seek out war with the Athenians. It also served as his justification for the burning of Greek temples.
-Charlie Stokes

Average Lifespan

500 B.C.

The average lifespan of the Classic age Greek was very young in modern terms for both men and women. "The average age at death for adult females in classical Athens was about thirty-six years, and the average for adult men was forty-five" (Pomeroy 176). This disparity in age of death between the sexes is because of the lack of technology and medicine associated with childbirth. Women and young children struggled with childbirth, many women died during the act. "The average woman probably bore about 4.3 children, perhaps 2.7 of whom survived infancy" (Pomeroy 176).

-Ryan Steele

The Ionian Revolt

499 B.C. - 493 B.C.

The Ionian Greeks were fed up with having to pay higher taxes and having to be under the puppet rule of the Persian tyrants. Pushed by a want for more power and wealth, Aristagoros, a tyrant of Miletus, went first around Ionia and then to Sparta and Athens to try to gain support for an uprising. Sparta declined, but Athens gave 20 ships, which sparked the first attack on Sardis. The Ionian Revolt ended with the razing of Miletus, one of the most prominent cities in Ionia. There was ultimately no gain on the Greek side from the uprising.
-Michael Morimoto

Ionian Rebellion

499 BCE - 494 BCE

Due to the high taxes and reign of puppet tyrants in Ionia, the Greeks revolted. This revolt was instigated by Aristagoras. He went through Ionia and overthrew many of the tyrants that help power. Aristagoras went to King Cleomenes, the king of Sparta, to gain his support. He tried to use Spartan ideals, such as distain for foreign customs, to convince Sparta to join, but the fact that it was so far inland deterred Cleomenes from agreeing. Aristagoras then went to Athens to ask for help, and due to them not wanting Hippas to regain power in Athens, they sent twenty ships. One significant thing that happened in this time was that Sardis was destroyed. This was significant because after the rebellion was over, it was one of the things that drove Darius to invade mainland Greece. The Ionian Rebellion ended in a naval defeat near Miletus. The end of the rebellion resulted in the women and children of Miletus being enslaved, as well as it's men being relocated.

Dennis Webster

Capture of Miletus

494 B.C.

Marked the end of the Ionian Revolt. The women and children were enslaved, and the men had to move to the Tigris River in Mesopotamia. This was a cultural hub of Greece, home to Thales, Anaximander, Anaximenes, and Hecataeus. The Greeks held this defeat in their hearts strongly for many years, even to the point of punishing those in the media for allusions to the event ( i.e. Phrynicus). - Christopher Masad

The Battle of Marathon

490 B.C.

After the burning of Sardis, Darius launched a campaign around Ionia and across the Aegean to avenge the city. Darius sought to attack Athens and Eretria for their help in the revolt. Athenians dispatched all of their forces, a 2:1 ratio, to Marathon and during September of 490 the Athenians and their allies attacked the Persians. The Athenians strategically divided the Persians through the use of their hoplite armor and concentrated their forces on their ends rather than the middle. The Persians were caught off guard and were forced back to their ships. According to Herodotus, the Persians lost 6,400 men and the Athenians lost 192 men.
-Michael Morimoto

The Carnea

490 B.C.

The Carnea, a Spartan festival, is known to have played a part in restricting Spartan involvement in fighting the Persians. In 490, the Carnea festival prevented them from helping the Athenians at the battle of Marathon because they didn't want to break their law to help. This festival is also the same festival that is taking place during the Battle of Thermopylae for which Leonidas ignored the Spartan ephors demands to wait until after Carnea had finished. -Danika Anastasi

Council of Five Hundred

487 B.C.

Political reform of Athens after the Battle of Marathon. Archons would be chosen by lot from each demos, the number of archons would vary with the demos' population. This led to little competition for the archonship and instead those passionate to become generals focused on that campaign instead.- Christopher Masad

Bisitun Inscription

486 B.C.

The Bisitun Inscription is a large relief carving in Bisitun, which is now present day Iran, that depicts Darius I gaining power over Persia. It shows Darius implementing his massive amount of military and political power. What is unique about this relief carving is that it is written in three different languages. Not only was this researched as a way to honor Darius I, but was also a tool to further study early middle-eastern writing.

-Ryan Steele

Battle at Artemisium

480 B.C.

Was the naval engagement off the north coast of Euboea between the Hellenic League composed of many Greek City-States and the Persians. This was the first engagement of the second Persian war, instigated by the Persian King, Xerxes. The skirmishes were fought over a period of three days concurrent with the land battle at Thermopylae in 480 B.C. Although both sides suffered equal losses, the Greek fleet was forced to retreat to Salamis because they could not sustain the loss of more ships and because the Greek land force had been defeated which the Naval plan depended on for success. The Greek fleet would eventually defeat the Persian navy at Salamis.

Harrison Blankenship

Decree of Themistocles

480 B.C.

The threat of Persian take over was rising. The Hellenic League had decided to make their stand at Thermopylae and off the coast of Artemisium, Euboea. The Athenian assembly, whether Themistocles was the primary force behind it, decreed that citizens and non-citizens were to send their women and children to Troezen, their elderly men to Salamis, and any able men on ships to join the navy.
~Elisabeth Pederson

Battle of Thermopylae

480 B.C.

Battle between Greek forces led by King Leonidas and his Spartans and the Persian king Xerxes. Took place at Thermopylae, just north of Phoecis. Against the word of the Oracle at Delphi, Leonidas and his men fiercely defended the narrow pass over the mountains protecting Greece. Upon learning of the betrayal of Ephialtes information regarding the secret pass exposing their flank, Leonidas dismissed all but 300 of his forces and honorably fought to the death. In the process they killed many of Xerxes’ personal body guard known as “The Immortals.” To this day, the 300 Spartans who died a heroic death are a symbol of courage and inspiration as they made the ultimate sacrifice for patriotism and country.
Harrison "Leonidas is my boy" Blankenship

Battle of Salamis

480 B.C.

This battle took place during the Second Persian War and was the deciding factor in that war that went in favor of the Greeks. This took place after the Greeks lost at the Battle of Thermopylae. Themistocles lured the Persians into the strait of Salamis where the greeks either captured or destroryed 300 Persian ships. After this huge loss a great deal of the Persian fleet left Greece.

Naga Rumicho

Battle of Plataea

479 B.C.

Land battle held on the plains of Plataea. King Xerxes I's forces wanted to take control of all of Greece. An alliance of most of the Greek city-states merged together, led by Spartan hoplites defeated a large number of Persians, and driving them back.

-Ryan Steele

Battle of Mycale

479 B.C.

A year after the Persians were defeated at the Battle of Salamis most of the Persian army went home with their ruler King Xerxes but a few fleets were left behind. In August 27th, 479 B.C. the remaining Persians were defeated and the Greeks officially won the Pelopennesian War in the battle of Mycale which took place in Mycale, Ionia.

Naga Rumicho

Delian League

477 BC - 454 BC

The Delian League was founded after that Battles of Plataea and Mykale to ensure that the Persian threat was completely neutralized. The Greeks wanted to contain Persia, make sure it never returned to the Greek mainland, loot any Persian cities they could conquer, and in general, take revenge on the Persians. The League was led by Athens and was comprised of about 150 Greek poleis. The costs of these military operations were paid for by annual contributions of either money or ships from each of the city-states. The Delian League turned into a tool of Athenian imperialism, and it's generally accepted that the League ended and the Athenian empire began in 454 when Athens moved the treasury of the Delian League from Delos to Athens.

Nicole Wamma


476 B.C.

In 476 BC after the Delian League formed, Athens showed its power by expanding throughout Aegean Sea. Cimon led an army to Euboea and conquered them, instead of making all the inhabitants slaves, he decided to keep the inhabitants there and instead they would be loyal to Athens. The bright side was that they were able to keep citizenship instead of falling into slavery.

~Kenwon Tran

Scyros Turned into a Cleruchy-Chris Masad

476 BC - 476 bc

in 476, Cimon was moving eastward and attacked Scyros, enslaving all and setting up a Cleruchy, which is a new city that still is under the rule of the mother city.

Battle of Eurymedon

467 B.C.

The Battle of Eurymedon was a battle between the Delian League Athenians and the Persians following the Battles of Salamis, Plataea and Mykale. This battle was both a land and sea assault for which the Greeks were able to stop the Persians from moving up the coastline and potentially taking over port cities. This victory was huge for the Delian league as the Persians were defeated in the area for good. This also means that the justification for having the Delian League continue to exist is kind of diminished as their goal and intentions had been achieved. -Danika Anastasi

The "First" Peloponnesian War

460 bce - 445 bce

The First Peloponnesian War was an undeclared war between Athens, leaders of the Athenian league and Sparta, leaders of the Peloponnesian League. This was claimed to be an undeclared war due to the series of battle and conflicts between the two leaders of the leagues. The helot revolt was the cause that lead to the war.

-Cedar Yang

Delian Treasury Transfered

454 BC

After establishing their supremacy in the Delian League by forcing membership and requiring contributions of money rather than ships, Athens made it clear that this league was not as it had once appeared. They made the executive decision to move the treasury of the league from the island of Delos, the center of the Greek world to Athens itself. There was some indication that the island was vulnerable to attack, but this transfer marked the official shift from the "Delian League" to an Athenian Empire.

Lindsay Nilson

Citizenship Law of 451

451 B.C. - Present

A law brought forth by Pericles at the Ekklesia in 451. This only allowed citizenship for children of two Athenian citizens. This started a process of isolation for Athens from other city-states since no citizens would want children with foreigners anymore. -Chris Masad

Citizenship Law of 451

451 BCE

Under the advisement of Pericles the Athenians limited citizenship in Athens to people whose parents were both Athenians. This caused many social and political problems. Due to the advantages of being an Athenian citizen, this law greatly discouraged citizens to marry someone not from Athens. Because of this, it somewhat isolated Athens from other surrounding polises. Also, many men would carry on sexual relationships with foreign women, while only marrying Athenian women, which created social tension in Athens.

Dennis Webster


447 BC

The construction of the Parthenon began in 447 BC but continued to be developed until 432 BC. It was a temple located at the acropolis of Athens, Greece. Being so that it was created here, it was dedicated to the Greek goddess, Athena. It emphasized the usage of doric architecture and structure during the classical period. It is a widely recognized cultural development for Greeks as it replaced their former parthenon that was destructed in the Persian War. It included much more sophisticated forms of art and structure. Being that it was so important the ancient Greece, they centered their democracy around it. It was later found to have use for the empire established.

Alex Pyle

Thirty Year's Peace

445 BCE - 432 BCE

It was a treaty that was signed by Athens and Sparta. This document terminated the First Peloponnesian War. Though it was named after how many years they were to remain peaceful with one another, it did not last that long. It only survived thirteen years.

The keypoints of the arrangement were: the two states cannot conflict with the enemies' allies, the neutral city-states could join any side, the allies could not switch sides, any disagreement was determined by arbitration, and if there were any conflicts within the group of allies, force was permitted.

=Cedar Yang

The Thirty Years' Peace

445 B.C. - 431 B.C.

Occurred after a time of Athenian downfall and the Spartans invaded, only to be persuaded by Pericles to create terms of peace which included: no fighting with the allies of the other state; a state that is undecided can join anyone they wish; judicial practice would settle disputes; no one could flip-flop alliances; internal disputes inside of an alliance could be solved with any means necessary. - Chris Masad

Pelopennessian War

431 B.C. - 404 B.C.

Was a war between Athens and their allies and the pelopennesian city-states led by Sparta. This was a major war in Ancient Greek history because it changed the course of history for Greece. Athens went from the most powerful state before the war to almost nothing after the war, while Sparta flourished after winning the war. The war caused poverty to spread and a lot of small civil wars to break out in Greece after wards.
-Naga Rumicho

Thebes vs. Sparta

372 B.C. - 371 B.C.

This battle between Thebes and Sparta was called “The Battle of Leuctra”, and was during the time of the “Spartan Mirage”. The Thebens won the battle over the Spartans, which resulted in the end of Spartan influence over the Greek world. The helots of Sparta were freed as a result of this Theben victory.
- Nicole Zibolsk

Corinth Destroyed

146 BCE

In an effort to destroy the last remaining non-Roman military power in the Mediterranean, the Achean League, the Roman Republic invaded Corinth. The Battle of Corinth between the Romans and the Greeks, eventually led to the break up of the Achaean League. There was a strong anti-Roman sentiment within Corinth at this time so to make an example of Corinth, the Romans sold the remaining citizens as slaves and destroyed the city itself. This marked the end of the Classical Age, and the beginning of the Roman period in Greece.

A History of the Roman World, 753 to 146 BC By H. H. Scullard pages 290-291

  • Dennis Webster

Land Travel

20 BC

Traveling the land in classical times was quite a task since horses were rare and confined only to the rich. Most Greeks would have walked to pretty everywhere, traveling often for days to get to a different city. They developed an array of different roads, with some having switchbacks and pulloffs with some immense projects like the diolkos or slipway that was built by the Corinthians in 600 BC.

Pericles Citizenship Law


To be a citizen of Athens a males parents must both be Athenian citizens. Prior to this a male's citizenship was only based on whether or not the father was a citizen of Athens.
Patrick McDonald

Delian League

478 - 454

Group of Greek city states brought together under the leadership of Athens to fight of the Persians. The league met on the island Delos, which was also where the treasury was located. Members had to pay taxes in the form of money or ships.

Patrick McDonald

Solon's Reforms


In Solon's reforms debt bondage was made illegal and those who were enslaved due to this were set free. In his reforms he also split the social classes, and banned the trade of grain.
Patrick McDonald

Important People


800 BC - 730 BC

The Legendary lawmaker from Sparta. Made Military-based reforms in Spartan society that caused their great increase in influence in the Peloponnese. This reform came to be known as the Great Rhetra. Ancient historians think he was out and about in the early 7th century, they do not think he died until the later part of the century. He is featured as one of the lawgivers in the U.S House of Representatives. His relief in the house is shown below.

  • Charlie Stokes


735 B.C. - 718 B.C.

Candaules is most infamous, because of the story that Herodotus told about him. It was said that Candaules told his bodyguard Gyges that his wife was a sight to be seen naked and that Gyges needed to see her naked. During that time period it was not the norm to see women naked, if the woman was your wife, it was ok.
So Candaules keeps insisting that Gyges needs to see his wife naked, so hesitantly Gyges accepts because it is the order of his king. So one night when the kings wife is changing in the bedroom Gyges hids and watches. As he is sneaking out he, she sees him. The next day she calls him to the room and she tells him that either he has to die or her husband Candaules has to die because of shaming her. So Gyges kills her husband in his sleep and becomes king.

Naga Rumicho


700 B.C. - 404 B.C.

The Alcmaeonids were a very wealthy family that lived in Athens in the Arcaic and Classic Periods. "Alcmaeonids" means the descendants of Alcmaeon. The Athenians thought that all the Alcmaeonids were under a curse. They were thought to be curesed because Alcmaenoids killed a man named Cylon, who was attempting to become a tyrant of Athens in 631 B.C. Cylon was stabbed by Alcmaenoids after he had surrenered and called a truce. Alcibiades was the last famous Alcmaenoid, who betrayed Athens and helped them lose the Peloponesian war in 404 B.C.

Tucker Vogt


700 B.C. - 600 B.C.

Tyrtaeus was a poet in the 7th century (dates are hard to pin-point) from Sparta. His poems were mostly about being beautiful and the best, which was Sparta’s idea of an “ideal” person. He wrote about men dieing young in battle, and how it was better to die sooner rather than later because the male figure looked better when it was young rather than old.
- Nicole Zibolsk


680 BC - 644 BC

Gyges was a bodyguard to King Canaules of Lydia. The King bragged about his wife and dared Gyges to watch her naked. This was seen as immoral by the customs. He ended up seeing her naked and she gave him two choices; either he could kill himself, or kill the king and take her as his wife and rule Lydia. He ended up choosing the latter and ruled. This showed how women had power and how the kingship was passed illegitimately .
-Kenwon Tran


660 BC - 646 BC

Croesus was the 5th generation descendant of Gyges. He was cursed to be the one who destroyed the Lydian empire. He wondered if he was able to defeat the Persians before they got too powerful. He asked the Oracle at Delphi about if he was able to defeat the Persians and got the response, "He would destroy a great empire." He took this as a sign that he would defeat the Persians but he ended up destroying his nation. It was also said that Apollo saved him from being burned and he was instead taken as a slave.
Croesus is also seen in Heroditus', Croesus is bragging about how he is the happiest person in the world but Solon advises him that he cannot say that until he died. He ended up losing his empire and being a slave.


650 B.C. - 615 B.C.

Draco was one of the earliest Athenian lawgivers. Much is not known about the man Draco, and some scholars have even suggested that Draco was not a man but the works were published on the authority of the "sacred snake" from which the word Draco comes from. Draco's most famous law was the homicide law which had very beneficial effects for Athenian society. Before the homicide laws were created, relatives of murdered victims were obliged to avenge their deaths by killing a member of the murderer's family. By Draco setting up a trial system in which the next of kin would prosecute the killer before judges (magistrates) this prevented the harmful societal consequences of "eye-for-an-eye" killings. While this system had its benefits, this homicide law was viewed as severe, as you could be punished by death for minor offenses
-Danika Anastasi


632 BCE

Megacles belonged to the Alcmaeonid family. He was an archon of Athens in 6th century BCE. Megacles had also slain tyrant Cylon's supporters after a failed attempt to take over Athens. After the catastrophe, Megacles was convicted of murder and he and his family were exiled from the city of Athens. Because of the murders (which he inherited a curse), two descendants of Megacles; lineage became important leaders of Athens: Cleisthenes and Pericles.

-Cedar Yang

Cylon (Kylon)

632 BCE

Cylon is an aristocrat and son-in-law of Theagenes, the tyrant of Megara. Cylon sought for Theagenes help during his coup. He successfully failed an attempt to take over Athens during the Olympic games in which the Oracle of Delphi had predicted in 632 BCE. Only to fall short of his goal, Cylon and his people were captured by the Athenians. He and his brother had escaped except for his supporters who had been slain by archon Megacles.

-Cedar Yang


630 B.C. - 570 B.C.

Lawgiver who came to power in Athens at the beginning of the sixth century B.C. Solon solved the problem of severe debt by canceling all debt. He made sure that no one had to be a slave to a fellow citizen if he was in debt to that person. He also introduced measures that started getting Athens to move towards democracy. (rough estimate of birth and death)

-Jeremy Caplin

Solon and his Social Reforms

630 B.C. - 570 B.C.

Solon was an Aristocratic poet and law maker from Athens, who was known for his great wisdom. Even though Athens was a very prosperous city state, there were many problems within their social structure. The Athenian citizens empowered Solon, whom composed a new legal system for Athens, which radically changed many facets of their previous, inferior system. Debt slavery was a huge problem as well as land distribution, class tension and foreign trade policy. He not only cancelled all debts but abolished debt slavery all together. Solon prohibited grain exportation, redesigned the class systems based on income and designed a great new judicial system promoting truth, equality and justice. Needless to say, his reforms saw very positive outcomes. These reforms manifested the idea of how a successful society should be assembled as well as a citizen’s role in society. Because of this, he has been called the father of democracy.
Harrison "THE symposium" Blankenship


630 B.C. - 570 B.C.

Sappho was a female poet from the island of Lesbos. Based on the information we have of the Archaic period, she was the only female in this field at that time, as well as one of the few females in Greek history overall. Because of her unique position, her poems are unique. Sappho writes for a female audience, giving girls and women relevant topics. Sappho is famous for her writings on love, especially love between females. Although women were not encouraged to write in her time, Sappho was highly regarded and respected as one of the greatest lyrical poets. Although much of her work has been lost, fragments have been preserved, and her reputation has carried though the ages.

-Lindsay Nilson


630 BCE - 620 BCE

Legislator of Athens, most noted for establishing written law code. Homicide Law, at circa 620 BCE, forbade the familial retaliation of vengeance-seeking kin. Under Draco, it now became the responsibility of the court system to punish the guilty after trails and official legal proceedings. His laws are known to be particularly harsh, sentencing the death penalty for even minor crimes. They also distinguished the difference between murder and involuntary homicide.

The word Draco refers to either snake or dragon, which were known to be mythologically clever, cunning, and strong to the Ancient Greeks.

-Reanna Phillips


620 BCE - 580 BCE

Alcaeus was born to aristocracy in Mytilene, a city-state on the island of Lesbos. He was a lyric poet during his time. Alcaeus opposed tyranny, and various poems that he had written contradicted the subject. He conspired against the tyrants that had come to power in Mytilene. Being a descent of aristocrats, Alcaeus and his brothers tried to maintain the aristocracy line from being diminished by the tyrants. Later, Alcaeus and his brothers were exiled from the island of Lesbos.

His poetry could be classified into four different “genres”: hymns that honored the gods, love poetry, drinking songs, and political poems—most of which pertained to his struggle against tyranny.

-Cedar Y.

Thales of Miletus

620 B.C. - 546 B.C.

Thales was the first philosopher of Miletus. He was the first to investigate nature and put together theories to explain events without the need to bring in supernatural deities. He worked on explaining natural phenomena through scientific reasoning. He was interested in most all subjects and he also founded the Milesian school of natural philosophy. Anaximander was quite possibly his student.

~Elisabeth Pederson


610 B.C. - 546 B.C.

A possible student of Thales. He drew a map of the known world and possibly also put together a map of the heavens.,r:2,s:0&biw=1366&bih=641 His philosophy was that everything was made up of 'the Boundless' which he explains as this limitless, infinite thing that everything was created from and what everything will eventually return to when the world ends. He also believed that the world was flat.

~Elisabeth Pederson


600 BCE - 590 BCE

Athenian lawmaker and poet, established revolutionary reforms which altered the class structure. With the economy suffering, Solon cancelled all debt and outlawed debt slavery for Athenian citizens. He also made making loans on property or people illegal retrieved and freed Athenian debt slaves that had been distributed throughout the surrounding lands. A major improvement in the trade economy was made with Solon's code preventing the exportation of all crops with the exception of olives. This eased the food crisis and to restrict the wealth available to aristocrats with plentiful land that produced excess crops. He also better standardized the units of measurement for increased ease in trading with neighboring poleis.
The new class system that was established under Solon was organized by wealth of owned land and organized into 4 categories:
1) "Pentakosiomedimnoi" - owners of land that produced 500 bushels of product or more
2) "Hippeis" - owners of land that produced 300-499 bushels, often members of the cavalry, as it was expensive to own a horse
3) "Zeugitai" - owners of land that produced 200-299 bushels, enough wealth to own a team of oxen
4) "Thetes" - owners of land that produced less than 200 bushels of product.
This new system helped to better equalize the classes. All male citizens could participate in the jury and attend assembly, and major political positions could be held by members of the top 2 classes.

-Reanna Phillips

Cyrus ll

576 BC - 530 BC

Also known as Cyrus the Great, was the king of Persia and was the founder of the Achaemenid Empire. The empire was able to embrace all citizen states of the Ancient Near East under his rule, to create the largest empire the world had seen to date. He was also well known for his achievements in human rights, politics, and military strategy. Cyrus eventually died in battle, but was succeeded by his son, Cambyses ll.
-Tucker Vogt


570 BC - 508 BC

An Alcmaeonid by birth (related to Megacles), Cleisthenes was a leader of Athens and leader of the rebellion that put the tyrant, Hippias (son of Peisistratus), out of power. Cleisthenes is known for setting up a democratic government in Athens that was put in place to make sure that a tyranny would never happen again. His three main contributions were the council of 500 (chosen by lot from the 10 tribes of 3 "regions" - Coastal, Plains, and City), the 9 archeons - also drawn by lot, and the idea of a jury of peers - also chosen by lot. By having the government chosen by lot, it showed that Greeks trusted each other to be of good moral character and be able to trust each other fully.

-Janella Reiswig

Tellus the Athenian

560 BC - 546 BC

Tellus the Athenian is a character featured in Herodotus' "Histories." When Croesus asks Solon who he thinks the happiest man he has ever seen is, Solon responds with Tellus the Athenian. He says that Tellus lived "at a time when his native city was flourishing, he had fine, handsome children, and got to see children born to them, all of who survived" (Herodotus, Book 1, p. 10). Additionally, he died with honor at the peak of his happiness. He did not accrue great wealth or power, but his happiness never diminished. Herodotus, through Solon, argues that true and sustainable honor, not money or possessions, is what determines happiness.
-Meredith Feenstra


559 BC - 530 BC

Cyrus was king of Persia. In 553 BC he conquered the Medians and incorporated them into Persia. He was then faced with an attack from Lydia. The Lydians saw that Persia was becoming more powerful and decided to try to put a halt to it. However, they were defeated, their king Croesus was captured (although his life was spared because Cyrus took a liking to him), and Cyrus gained much new territory. By the end of Cyrus' rule, the Persian empire extended from modern day Pakistan to the Mediterranean Sea.

Nicole Wamma

Darius I

550 BCE - 468 BCE

Darius I gained power by overthrowing Bardiya, and ruled from 522-486 BCE. He was the thrid Achmaenid king and the first king of Persia to mint his own coins as well as form a centralized government. He also divided the Persian empire into twenty provinces that paid an tribute to the king. Each of these provinces were governed by separate people. These changes helped solidify Persia as a major power. In retaliation for the Greeks burning Sardis, he invaded Greece, starting the First Persian War.

A relief of Darius I from the Apanada of Presepolis

Dennis Webster

Miltiades the Younger

550 BC - 489 BC

A Greek tyrant who was originally sentenced to death but defended himself and won freedom. He was later elected as one of the ten generals of Athens around 490 BC. He is credited with creating the strategy that defeated the Persians at the battle of Marathon. His son Cimon would later play a key role in the naval strength that Athens acquired.

-Dan Marino

Pisistratus (Peisistratus)

546 B.C. - 527 B.C.

Pisistratus was a tyrant who seized the Acropolis through a coup. He was a distant relative of Solon who gained and lost his tyrannical reign multiple times between roughly 546-527 B.C. The first time he was driven from power by the parties of the plain and the parties of the coast. He regained his power only after allying with Megacles, the leader of the coastal party, by agreeing to marry his daughter. Pisistratus made this alliance without any intentions of fathering any children with Megacles daughter, and when Megacles discovered this he drove Pisistratus out of power a second time. Pisistratus formed a group of mercenary soldiers to help him regain control after defeating the opposition in a battle at Marathon. After his death in 527, his sons Hippias and Hipparchus took over.
-Danika Anastasi


546 BC - 527 BC

A distant relative of Solons from northern Attica. Took control around 546 BC with support of Men of the Hills and some city dwellers. After a few years the Men of the Plain and the Men of the Coast united and threw him out of power. Megacles (leader of the Coatal men) then allied with him if he married his daughter. He did and Peisistratus took power again, but when Megacles found out they weren't having sex 'the normal way' to produce heirs Megacles allied with his enemies and drove him out again.He returned from his exile with mercenary soldiers that he'd aquired from the wealth he gained from minning. He took over and ruled for ten years before dying of natural causes. He had two sons (which is why he didn't 'do it right' with Megacles's daughter) Hippias and Hipparchus.

Peisistratus claims Athens with 'Athena' riding next to him, who was really just a tall girl from a nearby village.

Tricia Weyland

Cleomenes I

540 BC - 489 BC

King Cleomenes was the king during the Ionian revolt. It was his choice that kept Sparta out of the conflict due to his fears that the slaves would revolt if a large fighting force was sent away from Sparta. Herodotus wrote that his daughter, Gorgos, warned Cleomenes that Aristagoras would corrupt him with his money. It was said that Cleomenes was a brilliant tactician and it was during his reign that the Peloponnesian League was created. His curiosity for the outside world went against most Spartan sentiment, this dubbed him insane according to some people. He supposedly committed suicide although the circumstances of it are unknown.

  • Dan marino


540 BC - 480 BC

An aristocratic poet from Megara. He wrote mainly about ethical dilemmas and rules, as well as practical advice about life.

In Chapter 3 of Pomeroy, he complains about how wealth corrupts a lineage (marriage). The example was how a man wouldn't hesitate to marry the daughter of a "bad" man as long as she had a good dowry.

Most of Theogins works remain intact to today.
-Mindy Ung


530 B.C. - 480 B.C.

Military King of the Spartans. Lead the 300 Spartans in the Battle of Thermopolae. Leonidas sent most of the Grecian allies away because a greek traitor had betrayed them. Leonidas, along with the rest of his Spartans died in the end of the battle. 900 Helots and 700 Hoplites from Thespiae also stayed to fight.

~Elisabeth Pederson

Cambyses II

522 B.C.

Unknown Birthdate

The son of Cyrus the Great. He expanded the Achemeined empire into Egypt. His attempts were foiled as he moved into southern and western Egypt. His army was unable to cross the desert and suffered heavy losses due to the lack of resources. He was forced to retreat back.

-Dan Marino


522 B.C. - 443 B.C.

Pindar was one of the great lyric poets from Greece. He was born in Thebes and wrote various poems which we still have today. His poetry was so well renowned that when Alexander the Great destroyed Thebes, Pindar's home was left intact because Pindar wrote poems about Alexander's ancestors

-Dan Marino

Reign of Darius I

522 B.C. - 486 B.C.

King Darius I was the third ruler of the Persian Empire, and was responsible for its prosperity. “It was Darius I’s reorganization of the empire that ensured its survival for almost two hundred years” (Pomeroy p. 141). Darius was very innovative in terms of his kingship and rule over Persia. Some examples of this innovation are: The division of Persia into separate provinces, the utilization of a coin based monetary system, and the development of commercial water ways to assist in trade and finance.
King Darius also worked on several construction projects throughout his reign. The most notable was Persepolis. Persepolis was a “great ceremonial center” (Pomeroy p. 141) for the Persians.
-Ryan Steele

Hippias and Hipparchus

514 BC - 510 BC

Sons of Peisistratus. Hipparchus, along with his brother Hippias, ruled as a tyrant in the late 5th century. They supported cultural and artistic advances, filling their court with esteemed writers. Hipparchus was assassinated by the "Tyrant Killers," Harmodius and Aristogeiton after Hipparchus publicly humiliated Harmodius' sister, implying that she was not a virgin. After the assassination, Hippias became a very heavy-handed, authoritarian tyrant, but was exiled by the Alcmaeonids in 510.
-Meredith Feenstra


510 B.C. - 450 B.C.

Cimon, the Son of Miltiades', fought with the Athenians against Persian Invasions in Europe and Ionia. Much of what we learn about Cimon is in comparison to his opposite Themistocles. Cimon gained respect in the Athenian assembly through his good military reputation. Cimon is portrayed to be slow and courteous whereas Themistocles was seen as quick and insolent. When it comes to Sparta and the issue of further democratization, Cimon and Themosticles are polarized once again, Cimon favoring Sparta and opposing democracy's influence while Themosticles fostered competition with Sparta and democracy. Cimon, favoring Sparta, brought 4,000 hoplites with him to offer assistance. When they alone were sent home by the Spartans, the Athenians ostracized Cimon for his actions that led to their dismissal and embarassment. -Danika Anastasi


500 BC - 495 BC

Aristagoras was a tyrant of Miletus during the time of the Ionian revolt. He opposed Persian rule over Miletus and other Greek city-states in Ionia and helped to lead the region into a revolt against the Persians. In this struggle he is well known by Herodotus for his pleas to both Sparta and Athens, resulting in Athenian support for the revolt.
-Andrew Griesman


499 BCE

The Metics were considered as aliens, foreigners of Greece. They were the people that did not have the full right to vote in the Greek city-state that they resided in. Metics did not own land as it was illegal to. The Metics made up a great of the proportion of Athens population. Philosopher Aristotle was a well-known Metic.

-Cedar Yang


499 BC

Aristagoras was the main moving force behind the Ionian Revolts. He ended his and ended many other tyrannies in 499 BC in the ionian region and sought to hurting the persian empire and it's ruler Darius in any way possible. Once the revolt was in progress he sailed to Sparta in hopes of finding an ally for the rebellion. Once he arrived he asked the support of the King of Sparta, Cleomenes I. Cleomenes refused and had him sent away from Sparta at the advice of his daughter. He went on to lead a failing rebellion against Persia and eventually was defeated by Darius. The only thing he succeeded at was creating animosity against Greece in Persia which would then lead to the Persian Wars on the Peloponesse.

-Charlie Stokes


493 B.C. - 471 B.C.

Was a rising politician who was named Archon and Strategos by the Athenians in 493 B.C. following the Ionian Rebellion. His authority was backed not by powerful family connections or the land owning population but rather from the tradesmen. Due to the potential threat posed by the Persians from aiding the Ionians, Themistocles convinced the Athenians to renovate their harbors into fortified naval bases as well as build 200 additional triremes. His intelligent anticipation as well as his actions sat well with the Athenians as the Persians did eventually attack mainland Greece. He served as a very important and popular General for the Navy during the fist and second Persian invasion. Themistocles was eventually ostracized in 471 where he defected to Asia Minor. Died in 459 B.C.

Harrison Blankenship

King Xerxes

486 b.C. - 465 b.C.

King Xerxes was the successor of King Darius son of King Cyrus. King Xerxes is most popular for almost over taking Greece during his reign. He completely captured Athens and Herodutus wrote that he burned Athens down, but a great deal of other historians say that King Xerxes did not do that. Xerxes almost had the whole of Greece overtaken when he was defeated at the Battle of Salamis. After he lost that battle he took a great deal of his fleet home and kept a small force in Greece that was eventually defeated.

Naga Rumicho


484 BC - 425 BC

"The Father of History," Herodotus is known for his early compilation of stories and legends to create what was called the "histories," which covered topics ranging from the reason why the Greeks and Persian have ill relations, to large ants and cinnamon-birds. His style is unique for having both historical content and gossip-like dialogue, bringing together both large historical events and small ones, for he believed that people needed to know "all of history" in order to understand the present.

-Janella Reiswig


484 BC - 425 BC

Herodotus is known as the Father of History. He was presumably the first historian to gather material and actually test it's reliability. He was also the first to group information in an organized manner, but his writing style is more narrative than scholarly, which leads to some questions about bias in his works. He is best know for his Histories, which discuss the origins of the Greco-Persian wars. The Histories is also the earliest intact example of Greek prose.

-Nicole Wamma


480 BC - 470 BC

Pausanias was a Spartan general who was also regent after Leonidas' death. He led the Greeks to victory at Plataea and was put in charge of the Hellenic League. However, he began to act like a Persian leader, dressing in an eastern fashion and keeping a bodyguard, which the Greeks didn't like. Sparta recalled him and sent another general, but it was too late. His unpopular leadership gave Athens the chance it needed to offer something different and step into power. The Delian League was formed shortly after.

Nicole Wamma


479 BC

Xanthippus was a commander for Athens during the Persian War. He was a person who crucified a Persian Governor which happened to be near Troy, and the message from Herodotus was not to get greedy because of what happened during the Trojan War. The significance is that he is an Alcmaenid and the Father of Pericles.

~Kenwon Tran


470 B.C. - 460 B.C.

When Cimon starting to lose power, Ephialtes comes in and starts gaining power. He is the person, who starting Athens into more of a democracy. He passed some laws that were against Cimon's policies. He wanted to lower the power of the Council of the Areopagus. He wanted to transfer the power more towards the boule, the ekklesia, and the heliaia (body of prospective jurors). These laws were not particularly friendly towards some upper class, and Ephialtes was assassinated.

~Kenwon Tran

Ephialtes and his Reforms

465 B.C. - 461 B.C.

Ephialtes was a politician who was a leader in Athenian Democratic reforms. Before political life, he served as a strategos in the Athenian Navy in 465 B.C. After the embarrassing debacle with Spartans and the ensuing exile of Cimon in 463 B.C., Ephialtes took over unopposed and introduced many radical democratic reforms. Some of the major reforms included greatly reducing the power of the ancient Areopagus and spreading its duties to the boule, ekklesia and heliaia (jurors) as well as redefined the importance of ship rowers because the state relied on them too heavily for the Empire’s power. Soon after these reforms were installed, Ephialtes opponents arranged for his assassination which occurred in 461 B.C. His duties were handed over to Pericles who went down in Antiquity as one of the Athens outstanding politicians.

Harrison Blankenship


460 B.C. - 400 B.C.

Thucydides was a fifth century historian that wrote about Archaic Greek history. "Thucydides provides us with valuable information about the development of early city-states, especially Athens and Sparta" (Pomeroy 8). Thucydides discussed plagues, wars, and other major historical events throughout his lifetime.

-Ryan Steele


377 BC - 353 BC

Head of the Persian satrap of Caria, who could act independently of Persia as he wished. The capital of Caria was Halicarnassus. Throughout the new Athenian League who he believed would slow down his work, he persuaded some members to defect. Being a fan of Greek culture, he hired Greek sculptors to build him the Mausoleum . - Chris Masad



Former tyrant of Miletus, gave up tyranny and decided to remove tyrants from power in other city states.
Patrick McDonald


510 - 450

Assisted in the creation of the Athenian sea empire after a failed attempt of Xerxes and the Persian Army to invade Greece. He defeated a fleet of Persian ships in 466 at the Eurymedon River. In 461 he was ostracized after Sparta refused Athens assistance in helping with the Helot Revolt. In 451 he assisted in the making of the Five Year Truce between Athens and Sparta after his ten year ostracism.

Patrick McDonald


624 - 546

Pre-socratic thinker from Miletus and is credited by Aristotle for bringing about the first Western enlightenment. Looked outside of the Gods for reasons for natural events. Believed that the world came from water.

Patrick McDonald


750 - 650 B.C.

Hesiod was believed to have done his work between 750- 650 B.C. It is not known for certain though, how long he lived. He was a Greek oral poet, who with Homer, has been considered to be one of the earliest Greek poets whose work has survived. The writings of Hesiod have served as major sources on Greek mythology, farming technique, early economic thought, ancient time-keeping and arcaic Greek astronomy. - Tucker Vogt

Cultural and Intellectual Events

Iron Advancements

1050 BC - 950

Beginning in 1050 BC, Greek metal workers began to master the process of smelting and working iron. Iron was harder and stronger than the bronze popular during the Bronze Age, and it stayed sharper longer than bronze. Small ironsmiths began practicing all over mainland Greece and by 950, almost every weapon and tool later discovered in gravesites was made of iron.
-Meredith Feenstra

Phoenician Colonization

899 B.C. - 800 B.C.

The Phoenicians began to colonize parts of Spain and North Africa in the 9th Century BC. This made for a great trading route on the Mediterranean.

~Elisabeth Pederson

Geometric Art

800 B.C.

This style of art has evolved from simple shapes and designs to having more figures of people and animals. The people are still rigid and identical, but they are moving their way towards more fluid and stylistic paintings. They still include shapes in their paintings, just more detailed. Funerals and war scenes are commonly depicted on vases. - Nicole Zibolski


800 B.C. - 700 B.C.

Homer is credited with the epic poems, "The Iliad" and "The Odyssey". These poems show certain expectations for adult males and females and children. He focuses on contemporary concerns, emotions, and expectations. The "Iliad" displays reciprocity and xenia, which were important ideas at the time. The Odyssey showed xenia and how masters should treat their slaves.
-Kenwon Tran

Invention of Writing

750 BCE - 650 BCE

The invention of the Phoenician Alphabet is believed to have first been first adapted at Al Mina, a Greek and Phoenician colony. Events could now be recorded for future generations, designating this era as the end of 'Pre-history.' Writing quickly became widespread and is possibly connected to the increase in cultural and intellectual developments in this time, which is sometimes referred to as the 'Greek Renaissance.' Writing was accessible to all classes, and because of the diffusion of knowledge and ideas that it allowed, it potentially contributed to future challenging of the aristocracy.

-Reanna Phillips

Colonization of the West

750 B.C. - 625 B.C.

The Greeks colonized the Mediterranean in two separate phases. The colonization of west happened first starting in the mid 8th century and going until mid 7th century. This movement was directed mainly toward Italy and the western Mediterranean. The three main reasons for colonization was insufficient land, prospect of more wealth from trade, and the pull of being higher on the political scale. -Michael Morimoto

Doric Columns

700 B.C. - 500 B.C.

Doric columns are characterized by their lack of base and shafts that are usually fluted (or grooved). They are also topped with simple, flared capitals. On top of that lies a square slab known as the abacus.

-Jeremy Caplin

Kouros/ Kore Figures

700 B.C. - 480 B.C.

Kouroi statues were life size statues depicting male (Kuoros) and female (Kore) youths in the nude. They began to appear in ancient Greek culture during the start of the archaic period when trade with the Egyptians resumed, causing all sorts of exposure to Egyptian/foreign culture influence. Even though the statues are Egyptian in origin, the development of the statues characteristics were influenced by a number of other cultures thousands of years before. The statues inspired the Greek artists to create their own adaptations, applying Greek techniques, which ultimately produced a new breed of kouroi that would become a cultural artistic staple in the ancient Greek’s identity. The statues were made of marble and were very unrealistic depictions of the human form as sculpting would not be perfected for another century or two. - Harrison Blankenship

Corinthian "Orientalizing" Pottery

650 B.C. - 500 B.C.

Corinthian pottery became known for its "orientalizing" pottery in the mid 7th to 6th century during Cypselus' reign. During this period, Corinthian potters dominated the trade of pottery by finely painting their pots and popular perfume flasks in the "orientalizing" style. The "orientalizing" style often included floral motifs and animals. This style imitated the "black figure" technique in which intricate details can be added to the yellow clay by applying a slip which turns black upon firing. The major success of black figure pottery led to a decline in quality as a result of mass production.

-Danika Anastasi

Great Rhetra

600 BC

The Great Rhetra was the reform of Spartan society, or more specifically the new constitution as given by the legendary Spartan lawmaker Lycurgus. Was said to have been given by the Delphic Oracle. Spartans did not have any strife or contention over it's institution. This may have been because of it's legendary nature as well as Lycurgus' legendary nature.

  • Charlie Stokes

Ionic Columns

600 B.C.

Characteristed mainly by the "scrolls" at the top of the column. They also include carvings of historical events or myths above the columns and are typically more slender than Doric columns.

-Jeremy Caplin


600 BC

Marriage has been a very old tradition, one of which, that has no history of when it first began. Religiously back to Adam and Eve. During Ancient Greece, marriage sole purpose was to reproduce legitimate children. The husband and the woman's father were the ones to agree on the daughters marriage. This includes the woman's dowry. There was no documentation that was done to show a couple was married, instead the public display in the community was how people new couples were married. The ceremony would usually take place at night (athenian weddings) and the woman would be carried by chariot from her house to her husbands house. This journey represented the start of her new life.


Temple of Artemis at Corfu

580 B.C.

This temple is the first stone temple that we know of. Before this temple, all temples were made of wood. The temple is in Doric order. Notice the columns with the simple capital. The pediment is interesting because you can tell that the Greeks are still trying to figure out what to do with the space. It is organized by height, the small space has small humans. The gorgon in the center is the largest- trying to express movement, but still in the beginning stages. All figures are still very static.

-Michael Morimoto

Temple of Aphaia at Aegina

570 BCE - 490 BCE

Dedicated to the goddess Aphaia. The temple still has 25 of its original 32 Doric columns. It was believed to have been built on the ruins of an earlier temple. Due to the time spanned over the construction of the temple, shifts in artistic style from archaic to classical can be noted.

These warrior sculptures from the eastern and western pediments exemplify this shift in style over time from the egyptian-influenced to the naturalistic and characteristically classical.

-Reanna Phillips

Temple of Hera at Paestum

550 BC

The Temple of Hera at Paestum represents one of the earliest uses of Doric architecture. The temple was crafted with such precision and skill that for a time it was mistakenly credited to the Romans. The utilization of stone to create the temple was also a recent innovation used in this structure.
-Andrew Griesman

Red-figure Pottery

530 BC

Red-figure pottery replaced the formerly used, black-figure pottery. It got the name red-figure for the imagery being made in shades of red on a black background. This style was developed in Athens, Greece and came to be a vital part of culture and means of production. Human forms, movements, and expressions were better expressed in this form of pottery with the painting of images rather than carving.

Alex Pyle

Temple of Aphaia at Aegina

500 B.C.

Located on the top of a rock on the island of Aegina, the temple was built somewhere during the late 6th Century or the early 5th Century. Its columns were built in the Doric style. It was burnt down a couple years after it was built, but many of the columns still stand today.

~Elisabeth Pederson

Temple Themes

500 BC - 400 BC

All Greek temples seem to have the same recurring theme depicted in their frieze's and pediments. They commonly depict battles with mythological creatures (centaurs, gorgons, giants, etc.), important Greek battles (against the Trojans, Amazonians, etc.), the 12 labors of Hercules, and other local myths. The scenes all have some sort of political resonance that can be reflective of that time. The purpose of these scenes is so that the Greeks have a way to identify with something and know who they are.
- Nicole Zibolski

Columns/Greek Temples

499 BCE

The basic layout for the Greek temple was established in the late 7th century. The first fully-stone temple was dedicated to Artemis of Corcyra (Corfu). Later temples began to be categorized into three "types": Doric, Ionic, (both established around 5th century) and Corinthian (established somewhat later). Temples were built for the purpose of securing the good will of the god that it was dedicated to and became the center of prayer and sacrifice.

Doric - known for heavy fluted columns with plain, saucer-shaped capitals and no base.
Ionic - known for a more elaborate design with two opposed volutes in the capital.
Corinthian - known for its ornateness with a slender fluted column topped by a bell-shaped capital decorated with acanthus leaves and other such designs.

-Janella Reiswig

Kritios Boy

480 B.C.

This sculpture appears just at the end of the Persian War. This statue shows the difference between the kouros/kore statues that appeared before it. Kritios Boy has more movement, but still very rigid. There is more of a natural stance with the bend in the knee, and the body looks more like flesh rather than chiseled out of stone. The face is softer, and the mouth is relaxed. Notice the difference between this face and the standard "Archaic smile" that is used on kouros/kore statues.

-Michael Morimoto

Charioteer of Delphi

480 BCE - 470 BCE

The Charioteer of Delphi is a bronze statue found originally in the Sanctuary of Apollo in Delphi. It is an excellent example of the rapidly changing style of art in the Greek world and can be classified in the transitional late Archaic/early Classical period. Elements of this can be seen in the rigid, forward-facing stance resembling Egyptian art and early Kouros figures, but starts to explore naturalistic techniques later characterizing the Classical style, such as the detailed representation of drapery in the toga. The 'Archaic Smile' is also abandoned in favor of a more realistic expression.

-Reanna Phillips


480 BC

Triremes are the reason Athens became of the strongest naval powers in the Greek world. In the span of 490 BC to 480 BC Athens was able to increase it's navy to about 200 triremes. Following this the worker class of rowers became more prominent and began to create uneasiness within the elites.

The main strategy of triremes was to ram other ships causing them to sink down. This was achieved by the force exerted by the rowers and was a very successful strategy.

-Dan Marino

Battle of Salamis

480 BCE

The battle of Salamis happened during the 2nd Persian invasion and was a great victory that set off the spark that turned into the Athenian Empire. Occurring in 480 BCE, the Athenians and their allies fought off the Persian fleet by funneling their much larger ships into the narrow straits between the island of Salamis and the Greek mainland, trapping them there and making them an easy target for the more skilled Greek navy to easily defeat.
Leaving this battle victorious and with the Persians on the retreat, Athens rose to become the leader of the force chasing the Persians out of Greece, and for many years after, showed their military authority over other city-states and islands.

-Janella Reiswig

Battle of Mycale/Lade

479 BCE

After the Battle of Salamis by the Greece mainland, this battle was one of the major events of the true fall of the Persian army and the end of the Persian Invasion. Taking place in Ionia, the Athenians and the rest of the Grecian army had followed the retreating Persian north and then south into Lydia, and then even farther south to Ionia, the Greek heavily defeated the Persians and took back Ionian territory as well as getting rid of the fear of Persian invaders any time in the near future.

-Janella Reiswig

Temple of Zeus

472 BCE - 456 BCE

A temple dedicated to the God, Zeus, was built in Olympia, Greece around the early 5th century. The temple has an identity of being very classical and including major doric themes. It housed the statue of Zeus which came to be very famous and sacred to the Greeks. Altars and grounds of worship were constituted within the temple and its deme.

Alex Pyle

Temple of Zeus at Olympia

470 BCE - 456 BCE

This temple was very lavishly decorated. In the center of the temple there was believed to be a huge statue of Zeus sitting on a throne build entirely of gold and ivory. ONe of the reoccurring themes of Greek temples are battles with mythological creatures. This is exemplified in the west pediment where there was a depiction of Peirithoos and Theseus defeating Centaurs. The east pediment depicts the Olympic games, one of the most common themes in Greek art. At the center of each pediment are gods such as Apollo on the east pediment and Zeus on the west pediment, which show the importance of the gods in ancient Greek society.

The east pediment

The west pediment

Dennis Webster

Temple of Zeus at Olympia

470 BCE - 465 BCE

Doric order temple dedicated to Zeus, it contained the famous statue of Zeus. The statue was roughly 43 feet tall and is believed to have been destroyed along with the temple in 425 CE. The temple features pediments that showcase the early classical style, with both sides having symmetrical composition and depicting a theme important to the area. These pediments show one of the most commonly portrayed themes: battle with the 'other,' in this case they are dangerous creatures and recognizable enemies that all Greeks would recognize.

-Reanna Phillips

Presocratic Philosophers

469 B.C. - 399 B.C.

The early Greek philosophers who came before Socrates are referred to as presocratic philosophers. They were focused on the structure and development of the Cosmos (the physical universe). They studied the stars and the night sky and introduced their fellow Greeks to what we know as Astronomy.They were innovative thinkers of their time. They set the course that modern day western philosophical thought follows.


Revolt of Naxos and Thasos

465 BCE

The revolt of the islands of Naxos and Thasos from the Delian League (and Athenian rule) happened in 465 BCE. It was brought about by the overbearing presence of Athens as a power in the Delian League and its demands that all "allies" submit payment to the League either by giving a monetary payment or by building ships and keeping them reserved for war if Greece needed them. Being an island right next to Delos and one so far north, neither islands saw a point to helping with these dues and decided to pull out of the League, which caused Athens to put down their revolts violently and demand only monetary payment from the islands. Athens later changed it to all the islands give monetary payment only because they feared the idea of having mini-navies floating about the Aegean that could be used against them as easily as for them.

-Janella Reiswig


460 BC - 450 BC

The Discobolous statue is a great example of classical sculpture. It demonstrates the key features of classical sculpture: movement, detail, turning of the body, and more naturalistic. There is a clear difference between Archaic and Classical sculpture. The male body is seen as perfect and can be depicted as an object, which is the opposite of the female body. The female body cannot be sculpted naked because the elite woman cannot be see as a sex object.
- Nicole Zibolski


460 BCE - 450 BCE

Discobolus is a statue that was constructed in the mid - late fifth century. It was a breakthrough in sculptured art for showing rhythm in the physique of the male body. Balance and harmony were both achieved in the structure of this marble masterpiece. The intense definition helped expressed the fluidity of movement which was taking place in his actions; throwing the disc. There was in contrast a lack of emotion expressed and disproportion in how the nude man was to throw the disc.

Alex Pyle

Five Years Truce

452 B.C. - 447 B.C.

A five year truce between Athens and the Peloponnese orchestrated by Cimon following his return from ostracism. During this time Athens focused it's attention on Aegean. Major political events followed the truce.

Dan Marino

Grave Stela

450 BC - 400 BC

Grave stelai offered the chance for sculptural creativity. Each could be a very personal representation of the deceased. Because death was constant, they are a very steady form of sculpture, representing the steady adaptations of Greek art. One in particular, of a young girl with her pet doves, shows the continued importance of this art in a time of larger issues.

Lindsay Nilson


447 BC - 438 BC

The Parthenon is a temple in Athens that demonstrates great examples of classical sculpture. This temple is dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena. The figures depicted in the parthenon have sheer fabrics that drape across the body but hides nothing, especially when on the female body. It also has great naturalistic characteristics. The columns that support this structure are "doric" columns.
- Nicole Zibolski

Statue of Zeus

432 BCE

The statue of Zeus was sculpted by the great greek sculptor, Phidias in 432 BCE. It quickly became recognized across Greek and is claimed to be one of the seven wonders of the ancient world to this day. It resides in the Temple of Zeus in Olympia, Greece. The 43ft tall statue was created in the classical period and was sculpted with chryselephantine, ivory and gold, which showed the high status that Zeus held.

Alex Pyle

Doryphoros Sculpture

420 B.C. - 410 B.C.

The Doryphoros sculpture represents the most natural sculpture style that emerged in the late 5th century during the Classical Era. The Greeks were really into mathematics and finding the "perfect" proportions to the human body so that all statues were consistently beautiful. This statue in particular is more advanced than the Kritios boy because there is more movement, more muscular, and a more natural figure. The torso movement and the facial clarity sets it in deep contrast to the statues in the Archaic period.

-Michael Morimoto,0

Sicilian Expedition

415 BC - 413 BC

An expedition to Sicily by Athens during the Peloponnesian War. With no clear purpose, the expedition set out to expand the "empire" of Athens. This ultimately backfired as Athens was demolished in battle, thanks to the Spartan aid that Syracuse and other cities in Sicily received. Especially devastating where the losses in naval battles, which gave away the myth that Athens was invincible in the sea. They also lost a sizable part of their army and navy. Due to this event, various uprisings against Athens began to brew.

Corinthian Columns

400 B.C.

Characterized with intricate designs with carvings of leaves and rosettes. The base is also multi-layered. The U.S. Capital building has Corinthian columns

U.S. Capital seen with Corinthian columns

-Jeremy Caplin