It is no longer a secret that the story of civilization cannot be complete without mentioning the Greek culture, which is the cradle of modern western civilization and culture. In fact, Greek culture is the source of all Western politics and political styles. Many fields of study, such as science, mathematics, medicine, engineering, astrology, and so on, can be traced back to Greece.
The following are some of Greece’s contributions to Western Civilization:
- The Alphabet – The first two letters of the Greek alphabet are Alpha and Beta, which consisted of 24 letters, the first being Alpha and the last being Omega, and a combination of the first two letters is what we now use. This means that the alphabet derives from Greek.
- The Library – The Library of Alexandria was the first library in the world, and it was built in Egypt while Egypt was still under Greek rule during Alexander’s reign. During his reign, the Macedonians spread Greek culture throughout the Greek-conquered lands. Following Alexander’s death, Ptolemy took over the throne and ordered the construction of a library containing over 700,000 scrolls. He also ordered that every ship that passed through the Alexander port be checked to see if it contained any scientific or philosophical writings and that if it did, such works be copied and kept in the library, while the originals were returned. This allowed the birth of great philosophers like Erastothenes, who calculated the circumference of the earth.
- Democracy – Democracy is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as “a system of government by the entire population or all eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives.” The Ancient Greeks were the first to practice democracy; they began with monarchy, then oligarchy, and finally democracy, with 6000 adult men constituting the Assembly, whose duty was to vote on issues affecting Athens. When a vote is taken on an issue, the majority wins.
- Architecture – The column of pillars, which can be found in most buildings around the world, including the White House, has its origins in ancient Greek architecture. The Parthenon and the Erechtheum are two well-known pillar structures in Greece. Because Ancient Greece was known for its worship of many gods, every aspect of its architecture is designed to represent the story of various gods.
- Mathematics and Science – Eratosthenes, the first mathematician to calculate the circumference of the earth and later became the Chief Librarian of the Alexander Library, was born in Ancient Greece. Aristarchus was the first mathematician to develop the model of the earth revolving around the sun. Archimedes was another great mathematician who invented calculus and geometrical theorems, among other things. Hipparchus was antiquity’s greatest astronomer.
- Standardized Medicine – Although medicine has existed in various forms since the beginning of time, the ancient Greeks were the first to standardize the system of medicine, diagnosis, prognosis, and medical ethics. In the same vein, Hippocrates, one of Greece’s greatest inventors, was able to link all ailments to natural causes rather than punishments from the gods, as was previously believed. He also ensured that ethical standards were maintained in the medical line, creating ethics and theories that governed the practice of medicine.
- Theater – The word theater comes from the Greek word theatron, which means outdoor seating arenas where people sit to watch plays. The ancient Greeks loved theater so much that competitions between towns within the country are held to determine which town has the best performing company. This also implies that each town has its own theater group. The first playwrights were Greeks named Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides.
- Trial by Jury – The act was first performed in Greek in Athens during the Democratic era. The Jurors are selected male Athenians who follow the dikastai system, which prohibits anyone from selecting a juror for their own case. This act is carried out to ensure that proper justice is served. Obtaining a verdict under this system necessitates the participation of a large number of jurors, depending on the gravity of the crime.
- The Lighthouse – The Lighthouse of Alexandria, or the Pharos of Alexandria, is a three-layered, second-tallest structure in the world of its time. It is located in Egypt at a time when Egypt was still under Greek control. This structure has three layers: a square base, an Octagonal midsection, and a round beacon at the top. At the time, the only structure taller than it was the Great Pyramid of Giza.
10. Mythology – Myths were used by the ancient Greeks to explain things that could not be explained scientifically. Many of these myths have now been adapted into films, TV shows, and other forms of entertainment.
Indeed, there is no mention of Civilization without the mention of Greece!