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What, When, Where, How, Who?  

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What, When, Where, How, Who?


Introduction, Important Definitions and Related Concepts:

Classical antiquity (also the classical era or classical period) is a broad term for a long period of cultural history centered on the Mediterranean Sea, comprising the interlocking civilizations of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. It is conventionally taken to begin with the earliest-recorded Greek poetry of Homer (8th–7th century BC), and continues through the rise of Christianity and the decline of the Roman Empire (5th century). It ends with the dissolution of classical culture at the close of Late Antiquity (AD 300-600), blending into the Early Middle Ages (AD 500-1000). Such a wide sampling of history and territory covers many disparate cultures and periods. "Classical antiquity" typically refers to an idealized vision of later people of what was, in Edgar Allan Poe's words, "the glory that was Greece, the grandeur that was Rome!" The civilization of the ancient Greeks has been immensely influential on the language, politics, educational systems, philosophy, science, art and architecture of the modern world, fueling the Renaissance in Western Europe and again resurgent during various neo-classical revivals in the 18th and 19th centuries. The earliest period of Classical Antiquity takes place before the background of gradual re-appearance of historical sources following the Bronze Age collapse. The 8th and 7th centuries BC are still largely proto-historical, with the earliest Greek alphabetic inscriptions appearing in the later half of the 8th century. Homer is usually assumed to have lived in the 8th or 7th century, and his lifetime is often taken as marking the beginning of Classical Antiquity. In the same period falls the traditional date for the establishment of the Ancient Olympic Games, in 776 BC. The Phoenicians originally expanded from Levantine ports, by the 8th century dominating trade in the Mediterranean. Carthage was founded in 814 BC, and the Carthaginians by 700 BC had firmly established strongholds in Sicily, Italy and Sardinia, which brought about conflicts of interest with Etruria. The Archaic period followed the Greek Dark Ages, and saw significant advancements in political theory, and the rise of democracy, philosophy, theatre, poetry, as well as the revitalisation of the written language (which had been lost during the Dark Ages). In pottery, the Archaic period sees the development of the Orientalizing style, which signals a shift from the Geometric Style of the later Dark Ages and the accumulation of influences derived from Phoenicia and Syria. Pottery styles associated with the later part of the Archaic age are the black-figure pottery, which originated in Corinth during the 7th century BC and its successor, the red-figure style, developed by the Andokides Painter in about 530 BC. Main articles: Apoikiai and Magna Graecia. The Etruscans had established political control in the region by the late 7th century BC, forming the aristocratic and monarchial elite. The Etruscans apparently lost power in the area by the late 6th century BC, and at this point, the Italic tribes reinvented their government by creating a republic, with much greater restraints on the ability of rulers to exercise power.[1] According to legend, Rome was founded on April 21, 753 BC by twin descendants of the Trojan prince Aeneas, Romulus and Remus.[2] As the city was bereft of women, legend says that the Latins invited the Sabines to a festival and stole their unmarried maidens, leading to the integration of the Latins and the Sabines.[3] Archaeological evidence indeed shows first traces of settlement at the Roman Forum in the mid 8th century BC, though settlements on the Palatine Hill may date back to the 10th century BC.[4][5] The seventh and final king of Rome was Tarquinius Superbus. As the son of Tarquinius Priscus and the son-in-law of Servius Tullius, Tarquinius was of Etruscan birth. It was during his reign that the Etruscans reached their apex of power Tarquinius removed and destroyed all the Sabine shrines and altars from the Tarpeian Rock, enraging the people of Rome. The people came to object to his rule when he allowed the rape of Lucretia, a patrician Roman, at the hands of his own son. History is the interpretation of past events, societies and civilisations. The term history comes from the Greek historia (ἱστορία), "an account of one's inquiries," and shares that etymology with the English word story. The 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica stated that "history in the wider sense is all that has happened, not merely all the phenomena of human life, but those of the natural world as well. It is everything that undergoes change; and as modern science has shown that there is nothing absolutely static, therefore, the whole universe, and every part of it, has its history." History is the study of the past, focused on human activity and leading up to the present day.[1] More exactly, history is the field of research producing a continuous narrative and a systematic analysis of past events of importance to the human race,[1] including the study of events over time and their relation to humanity.[2] Those who study History as a profession are called historians. The word history comes from Greek ἱστορία (istoria), from the Proto-Indo-European *wid-tor-, from the root *weid-, "to know, to see". This root is also present in the English word wit, in the Latin words vision and video, in the Sanskrit word veda, and in the Slavic word videti and vedati, as well as others.[citation needed] (The asterisk before a word indicates that it is a hypothetical construction, not an attested form.) The Ancient Greek word ἱστορία, istoría, means "knowledge acquired by investigation, inquiry". It was in that sense that Aristotle used the word in his Περί Τά Ζωα Ιστορία, Peri Ta Zoa Istória or, in Latinized form, Historia Animalium.[3] The term is derived from ἵστωρ, hístōr meaning wise man, witness, or judge. We can see early attestations of ἵστωρ in Homeric Hymns, Heraclitus, the Athenian ephebes' oath, and in Boiotic inscriptions (in a legal sense, either "judge" or "witness," or similar). The spirant is problematic, and not present in cognate Greek eídomai ("to appear"). The form historeîn, "to inquire", is an Ionic derivation, which spread first in Classical Greece and ultimately over all of Hellenistic civilization. It was still in the Greek sense that Francis Bacon used the term in the late 16th century, when he wrote about "Natural History". For him, historia was "the knowledge of objects determined by space and time", that sort of knowledge provided by memory (while science was provided by reason, and poetry was provided by fantasy). The word entered the English language in 1390 with the meaning of "relation of incidents, story". In Middle English, the meaning was "story" in general. The restriction to the meaning "record of past events" arises in the late 15th century. In German, French, and most Germanic and Romance languages the same word is still used to mean both "history" and "story". The adjective historical is attested from 1561, and historic from 1669.[1] Historian in the sense of a "researcher of history" is attested from 1531. In all European languages, the substantive "history" is still used to mean both "what happened with men", and "the scholarly study of the happened", the latter sense sometimes distinguished with a capital letter, "History", or the word historiography[3] History is facilitated by the formation of a 'true discourse of past'. The Mediterranean Basin refers to the lands around and surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea. In biogeography, the Mediterranean Basin refers to the lands around the Mediterranean Sea that have a Mediterranean climate, with mild, rainy winters and hot, dry summers, which supports characteristic Mediterranean forests, woodlands, and shrub vegetation. The Mediterranean basin covers portions of three continents, Europe, Asia, and Africa. Europe lies to the north, and three large peninsulas, the Iberian Peninsula, Italian Peninsula, and the Balkan Peninsula, extend into the Mediterranean-climate zone. A system of folded mountains, including the Pyrenees dividing Spain from France, the Alps dividing Italy from Central Europe, the Dinaric Alps along the eastern Adriatic, and the Balkan and Rhodope mountains of the Balkan Peninsula divide the Mediterranean from the temperate climate regions of Western and Central Europe. The Mediterranean Basin extends into western Asia, covering the western and southern portions of the peninsula of Anatolia, excluding the temperate-climate mountains of central Anatolia. It includes the Mediterranean climate Levant at the eastern end of the Mediterranean, bounded on the east and south by the Syrian and Negev deserts. The northern portion of the Maghreb region of northwestern Africa has a Mediterranean climate, separated from the Sahara Desert, which extends across North Africa, by the Atlas Mountains. In the eastern Mediterranean the Sahara extends to the southern shore of the Mediterranean, with the exception of the northern fringe of the peninsula of Cyrenaica in Libya, which has a dry Mediterranean climate. The Mediterranean Basin was shaped by the ancient collision of the northward-moving African-Arabian continent with the stable Eurasian continent. As Africa-Arabia moved north, it closed the former Tethys Sea, which formerly separated Eurasia from the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana, of which Africa was part. At the same time, about 170 mya in the Jurassic, a small Neotethys ocean basin formed shortly before the Tethys Sea was closed at the eastern end. The collision pushed up a vast system of mountains, extending from the Pyrenees in Spain to the Zagros Mountains in Iran. This episode of mountain building, known as the Alpine orogeny, occurred mostly during the Oligocene (34 to 23 million years ago (mya)) and Miocene (23 to 5.3 mya) epochs. The Neotethys became larger during these collisions and associated folding and subduction. About 6 mya during the late Miocene, the Mediterranean was closed at its western end as well, which caused the entire sea to evaporate; this episode is known as the Messinian Salinity Crisis, which ended when the Atlantic reflooded the basin at the end of the Miocene. The end of the Miocene also marked a change in the Mediterranean Basin's climate. Fossil evidence shows that the Mediterranean Basin had a relatively humid subtropical climate with summer rainfall during the Miocene, which supported laurel forests. The shift to a Mediterranean climate occurred within the last 3.2 - 2.8 million years, during the Pliocene epoch, as summer rainfall decreased. The subtropical laurel forests retreated, although they persisted on the islands of Macaronesia off the Atlantic coast of Iberia and North Africa, and the present Mediterranean vegetation evolved, dominated by coniferous trees and sclerophyllous trees and shrubs, with small, hard, waxy leaves that prevent moisture loss in the dry summers. Much of these forests and shrublands have been altered beyond recognition by thousands of years of human habitation. There are now very few relatively intact natural areas in what was once a heavily wooded region. The Mediterranean Basin is the largest of the world's five Mediterranean forests, woodlands, and shrub regions. It is home to a number of plant communities, which vary with rainfall, elevation, latitude, and soils.




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