The Cycladic community began in the different isles of the Aegean which were in the middle of Crete and mainland Greece. The Cyclade area was a vital location because it was the Greece’s business connection to the rest of Europe and Asia from which the Greeks learned many of their agricultural practices. This time period was characterized by a very fast growth in population and very dynamic development in all aspects of society. Sculpture using marble and pottery were popular art forms during this period in this area of Greece.
The Dark Ages (1100 B. C. to 800 B. C. ) The Dark Ages are called so because little evidence could indicate what happened during this time frame. There are some findings that Dorians, a Greek-speaking tribe from the North, may have caused the decline of Mycenaean civilization. “The Dorians kept power entirely to themselves, creating a ruling military class which they solely occupied’ (Dorian, 2007). It seems that the centralized systems were broken and that monarchies dominated the political structure.
This period’s significant contribution to Greek history, however, seems to show that it was at this time when Homer wrote the Iliad which included the epic of the Trojan War (Greeka, n. d. ). Archaic Period (800B. C. to 500 B. C. ) During the Archaic Period, Aristocratic Republics replaced the political structure of Greek civilization and foreign influence abound. It is during this time that human and mythological figures began to appear in different art forms.
The first Olympic game was held in 776 B. C. wherein a cook named Koroibas won the 600 foot race called stadion (The Games, n. d. ). These festivals were held for the God on Mount Olympus, Zeus. People felt that Greece at his point in time, was overpopulated and began to migrate to other European territories bringing with them their advanced culture. Coins became a currency at around 600 B. C. (Ancient Greek Civilizations, 2003) due to the influence of traders from Asia Minor where the first coin was supposedly made. Panathenaic festivals became popular sometime in 566 B. C.
This very important occasion celebrated for numerous days sometime between July and August, supposedly Athena’s birthday, was well-anticipated because anyone can join except for slaves. It consisted of contests, processions and sacrifices (The Panathenaic Festival, n. d. ). Democracy Another very significant contribution of this period is the birth of democracy in Athens at around 508 B. C. There were two types of people in Greece. Men who were born in the city they resided in were called citizens while all other individuals are considered non-citizens.
Only citizens have the choice of politicians and vote in plebiscites. There were large conventions called “The Assembly” that must be attended by at least 6, 000 citizens before it was considered official enough to be heard by the government. This meeting was done regularly wherein citizens may address their concerns regarding laws that needed to be implemented. A body of law-makers called Council was made up of 500 citizens which was changed annually. The members held the task of making new laws and debated on how these could be best implemented. Life in Greece
There was an “agora” in the middle of each Greek city (Ancient Greeks, n. d. ) which was sort of like a town square wherein merchants can trade their various goods whether native or foreign. This was the center of commerce wherein anyone, even foreigners, was allowed to buy what they wanted. It was also where men may hang out to with friends, know the latest political announcement or trade views with foreigners. Very few women could be seen in the agora and they were mostly female slaves who have been sent by their rich masters to shop for market goods.
The most important infrastructure of the city were built around the agora. Because of the hot climate, Greeks prefer to wear light clothes which are evidenced on the carvings that present-day archeologists have been able to study. Depending on the warmth, some men even prefer to wear only their loincloth. During cold weather, they place a cloak over their normal clothes which are tunics or “chitons” – square shaped textile that are held at the shoulders using pins and around the waist by belts (Ancient Greeks, n. d. ).
Women often wore a fancier shorter version called a peplos that was worn on top of the chiton. To take off boredom, these tunics were usually dyed and embroidered according to tastes. Protection for the feet was usually used when outside of the house and these came in the form of sandals and leather boots. Brooches and pins were necessary jewelry to fasten their chitons. The women adored every form of jewelry. The wealthy females also used make-up and allowed their slaves to fix their hair according to what was in fashion. At around 500 B. C. , men saw it fashionable to wear beards and short hair styles.