In Greek mythology, Prometheus is a Titan, culture hero, trickster figure, credited with the creation of man from clay, who defies the gods by stealing fire and giving it to humanity, an act that enabled progress and civilisation. Prometheus is known for his intelligence and as a champion of mankind and seen as the author of the human arts and sciences generally, he is sometimes presented as the father of the hero of the Greek flood story. The punishment of Prometheus as a consequence of the theft is a major theme of his mythology, is a popular subject of both ancient and modern art. Zeus, king of the Olympian gods, sentenced the Titan to eternal torment for his transgression; the immortal Prometheus was bound to a rock, where each day an eagle, the emblem of Zeus, was sent to feed on his liver, which would grow back overnight to be eaten again the next day. Prometheus is freed at last by the hero Heracles. In another myth, Prometheus establishes the form of animal sacrifice practiced in ancient Greek religion.
Evidence of a cult to Prometheus himself is not widespread. He was a focus of religious activity at Athens, where he was linked to Athena and Hephaestus, other Greek deities of creative skills and technology. In the Western classical tradition, Prometheus became a figure who represented human striving the quest for scientific knowledge, the risk of overreaching or unintended consequences. In particular, he was regarded in the Romantic era as embodying the lone genius whose efforts to improve human existence could result in tragedy: Mary Shelley, for instance, gave The Modern Prometheus as the subtitle to her novel Frankenstein; the etymology of the theonym prometheus is debated. The classical view is that it signifies "forethought," as that of his brother Epimetheus denotes "afterthought". Hesychius of Alexandria gives Prometheus the variant name of Ithas, adds "whom others call Ithax", describes him as the Herald of the Titans. Kerényi remarks that these names are "not transparent", may be different readings of the same name, while the name "Prometheus" is descriptive.
It has been theorised that it derives from the Proto-Indo-European root that produces the Vedic pra math, "to steal", hence pramathyu-s, "thief", cognate with "Prometheus", the thief of fire. The Vedic myth of fire's theft by Mātariśvan is an analogue to the Greek account. Pramantha was the tool used to create fire; the suggestion that Prometheus was in origin the human "inventor of the fire-sticks, from which fire is kindled" goes back to Diodorus Siculus in the first century BC. The reference is again to the "fire-drill", a worldwide primitive method of fire making using a vertical and a horizontal piece of wood to produce fire by friction; the oldest record of Prometheus is in Hesiod, but stories of theft of fire by a trickster figure are widespread around the world. Some other aspects of the story resemble the Sumerian myth of Enki, a bringer of civilisation who protected humanity against the other gods; that Prometheus descends from the Vedic fire bringer Mātariśvan was a suggestion made in the 19th century which lost favour in the 20th century but is still supported by some.
The first recorded account of the Prometheus myth appeared in the late 8th-century BC Greek epic poet Hesiod's Theogony. He was a son of the Titan Iapetus by Clymene, one of the Oceanids, he was brother to Menoetius and Epimetheus. Hesiod, in Theogony, introduces Prometheus as a lowly challenger to Zeus's omniscience and omnipotence. In the trick at Mekone, a sacrificial meal marking the "settling of accounts" between mortals and immortals, Prometheus played a trick against Zeus, he placed two sacrificial offerings before the Olympian: a selection of beef hidden inside an ox's stomach, the bull's bones wrapped in "glistening fat". Zeus chose the latter. Henceforth, humans would keep that meat for themselves and burn the bones wrapped in fat as an offering to the gods; this angered Zeus. In this version of the myth, the use of fire was known to humans, but withdrawn by Zeus. Prometheus, stole fire back in a giant fennel-stalk and restored it to humanity; this further enraged Zeus. The woman, a "shy maiden", was fashioned by Hephaestus out of clay and Athena helped to adorn her properly.
Hesiod writes, "From her is the race of women and female kind: of her is the deadly race and tribe of women who live amongst mortal men to their great trouble, no helpmeets in hateful poverty, but only in wealth". Prometheus is chained to a rock in the Caucasus for eternity, where his liver is eaten daily by an eagle, only to be regenerated by night, due to his immortality; the eagle is a symbol of Zeus himself. Years the Greek hero Heracles slays the eagle and frees Prometheus from his torment. Hesiod revisits the theft of fire in Works and Days. In it the poet expands upon Zeus's reaction to Prometheus's deception. Not only does Zeus withhold fire from humanity, but "the means of life" as well. Had Prometheus not provoked Zeus's wrath, "you would do work enough in a day to supply you for a full year without working.
Dionysius of Halicarnassus
Dionysius of Halicarnassus was a Greek historian and teacher of rhetoric, who flourished during the reign of Caesar Augustus. His literary style was Atticistic — imitating Classical Attic Greek in its prime. Dionysius' opinion of the necessity of a promotion of paideia within education, from true knowledge of Classical sources, endured for centuries in a form integral to the identity of the Greek elite, he was a Halicarnassian. At some time he moved to Rome after the termination of the civil wars, spent twenty-two years studying Latin and literature and preparing materials for his history. During this period, he gave lessons in rhetoric, enjoyed the society of many distinguished men; the date of his death is unknown. In the 19th century, it was supposed that he was the ancestor of Aelius Dionysius of Halicarnassus, his major work, entitled Ῥωμαϊκὴ Ἀρχαιολογία, embraced the history of Rome from the mythical period to the beginning of the First Punic War. It was divided into twenty books, of which the first nine remain entire, the tenth and eleventh are nearly complete, the remaining books exist in fragments in the excerpts of the Roman emperor Constantine Porphyrogenitus and an epitome discovered by Angelo Mai in a Milan manuscript.
The first three books of Appian, Plutarch's Life of Camillus and Life of Coriolanus embody much of Dionysius. His chief object was to reconcile the Greeks to the rule of Rome, by dilating upon the good qualities of their conquerors and by arguing, using more ancient sources, that the Romans were genuine descendants of the older Greeks. According to him, history is philosophy teaching by examples, this idea he has carried out from the point of view of a Greek rhetorician, but he consulted the best authorities, his work and that of Livy are the only connected and detailed extant accounts of early Roman history. Dionysius was the author of several rhetorical treatises, in which he shows that he has studied the best Attic models: The Art of Rhetoric, rather a collection of essays on the theory of rhetoric and not all his work; the last two treatises are supplemented by letters to Gn. Pompeius and Ammaeus. Dionysian imitatio is the literary method of imitation as formulated by Dionysius, who conceived it as the rhetorical practice of emulating, adapting and enriching a source text by an earlier author.
Dionysius' concept marked a significant departure from the concept of mimesis formulated by Aristotle in the 4th century BC, only concerned with "imitation of nature" and not "imitation of other authors." Latin orators and rhetoricians adopted Dionysius' method of imitatio and discarded Aristotle's mimesis. Dionysius is one of the primary sources for the accounts of the Roman foundation myth and the myth of Romulus and Remus, he was relied upon for the publications of Livy and Plutarch. He writes extensively on the myth; the myth spans the first 2 volumes of his Roman Antiquities, beginning with Book I chapter 73 and concluding in Book II chapter 56. Dionysius claims, her family descends from Aeneas of Troy and the daughter of King Latinus of the Original Latin tribes. Procas, her grandfather had willed the throne to his son Numitor but he was deposed by her uncle, Amulius. For fear of the threat that Numitor's heirs might pose, the king had Ilia's brother, Aegestus killed and blamed robbers; the truth about the crime was known by some, including Numitor.
Amulius appointed Ilia to the Vestal priestesshood, where her vow of chastity would prevent her from producing any further male rivals. Despite this, she became pregnant a few years claiming to have been raped; the different accounts of the twins' conception are laid out, but Dionysius declines to choose one over the others. The sources variously relate that it was a suitor, Amulius himself, or the god Mars himself; the latter is supposed to have comforted Ilia by making her grieve, telling her that she would bear twins whose bravery and triumphs would be unmatched. Ilia hid her pregnancy with claims of illness so as to avoid her vestal duties. Amulius suspected her and employed physicians and his wife to monitor her for signs of being with child; when he did discover the truth, she was placed under armed guard. After being informed of the delivery of the twins, Amulius suspected that she had in fact given birth to triplets; the third child had been concealed from the guards present. Ilia kept secretly in a hidden dungeon for the rest of her life.
Citing Fabius, Porcius Cato, Piso, Dionysius recounts the most common t
Arcadia is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the administrative region of Peloponnese, it is situated in the eastern part of the Peloponnese peninsula. It takes its name from the mythological figure Arcas. In Greek mythology, it was the home of the god Pan. In European Renaissance arts, Arcadia was celebrated as an harmonious wilderness. Arcadia has its present-day capital at Tripoli, it covers about 18% of the Peloponnese peninsula, making it the largest regional unit on the peninsula. Arcadia has a ski resort on Mount Mainalo, located about 20 km NW of Tripoli. Other mountains of Arcadia are the Lykaion in the west; the climate consists of hot summers and mild winters in the eastern part, the southern part, the low-lying areas and the central area at altitudes lower than 1,000 m. The area receives rain during fall and winter months in the rest of Arcadia. Winter snow occurs in the mountainous areas for much of the west and the northern part, the Taygetus area, the Mainalon. After the collapse of the Roman power in the west, Arcadia remained as part of the Greek-speaking Byzantine Empire.
Arcadia remained a beautiful, secluded area, its inhabitants became proverbial as herdsmen leading simple pastoral unsophisticated yet happy lives, to the point that Arcadia may refer to some imaginary idyllic paradise, immortalized by Virgil's Eclogues, by Jacopo Sannazaro in his pastoral masterpiece, Arcadia. After the Fourth Crusade, the area became a part of the Principality of Achaea, but was progressively recovered by the Byzantine Greeks of the Despotate of the Morea from the 1260s on, a process, completed in 1320; the region fell into the hands of the Ottoman Turks in 1460. With the exception of a period of Venetian rule in 1687–1715, the region remained under Turkish control until 1821; the Latin phrase Et in Arcadia ego, interpreted to mean "Even in Arcadia there am I", is an example of memento mori, a cautionary reminder of the transitory nature of life and the inevitability of death. The phrase is most associated with a 1647 painting by Nicolas Poussin known as "The Arcadian Shepherds".
In the painting the phrase appears as an inscription on a tomb discovered by youthful figures in classical garb. Arcadia was one of the centres of the Greek War of Independence which saw victories in their battles including one in Tripoli. After a victorious revolutionary war, Arcadia was incorporated into the newly created Greek state. Arcadia saw small emigration. In the 20th century, Arcadia experienced extensive population loss through emigration to the Americas. Many Arcadian villages lost half their inhabitants, fears arose that they would turn into ghost towns. Arcadia now has a smaller population than Corinthia. Demographers expected that its population would halve between the early 21st century; the population has fallen to 87,000 in 2011. An earthquake measuring 5.9 on the Richter magnitude scale shook Megalopoli and the surrounding area in 1965. Large numbers of buildings were destroyed. Within a couple of years, the buildings were rebuilt anti-seismically; this earthquake revealed an underground source of lignite in the area, in 1967 construction began on the Megalopoli Power Plant, which began operating in 1970.
The mining area south of the plant is the largest mining area in the peninsula and continues to the present day with one settlement moved. In July and August 2007 forest fires caused damage in Arcadia, notably in the mountains. In 2008, a theory proposed by classicist Christos Mergoupis suggested that the mummified remains of Alexander the Great, may in fact be located in Gortynia-Arkadia, in the Peloponnese of Greece. Since 2008, this research is ongoing and being conducted in Greece; the research was first mentioned on CNN International in May 2008. When, during the Greek Dark Ages, Doric Greek was introduced to the Peloponnese, the older Arcadocypriot Greek language survived in Arcadia. Arcadocypriot never became a literary dialect. Tsan is a letter of the Greek alphabet occurring only in Arcadia, shaped like Cyrillic И; the Tsakonian language, still spoken on the coast of modern Arcadia, is a descendant of Doric Greek, as such is an extraordinary example of a surviving regional dialect of Greek.
The principal cities of Tsakonia are the Arcadian coastal towns of Tyros. The regional unit Arcadia is subdivided into 5 municipalities; these are: Gortynia Megalopoli North Kynouria South Kynouria Tripoli As a part of the 2011 Kallikratis government reform, the regional unit Arcadia was created out of the former prefecture Arcadia. The prefecture had the same territory as the present regional unit. At the same time, the municipalities were reorganised, according to the table below. Arcadia was divided into four provinces: Province of Gortynia—Dimitsana Province of Kynouria—Leonidio Province of Mantineia—Tripolis Province of Megalopoli—MegalopolisNote: Provinces no longer hold any legal status in Greece; the main towns in modern Arcadia are Tripoli, Vytina, Lagkadia, Leonidio, Levidi and Stemnitsa. Ancient cities include Acacesium, Astros, Daseae, Gortys, Heraia, Lykaio, Lycos
Achaea or Achaia, sometimes transliterated from Greek as Akhaia, is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of West Greece and is situated in the northwestern part of the Peloponnese peninsula; the capital is Patras. Its population surpassed 300,000 for the first time in 2001. Achaea is bordered by Elis to the west and southwest, Arcadia to the south, Corinthia to the east and southeast; the Gulf of Corinth lies to its northeast, the Gulf of Patras to its northwest. The mountain Panachaiko, though not the highest of Achaea, dominates the coastal area near Patras. Higher mountains are found in the south, such as Erymanthos. Other mountain ranges in Achaea are Skollis, Omplos and Movri, its main rivers ordered from west to east are the Larissos, Peiros, Charadros and Vouraikos. Most of the forests are in the mountain ranges, though several are in the plains including the extreme west. There are barren lands in the highest areas. Achaea has mild winters. Sunny days dominate during the summer months in areas near the coast, while the summer can be cloudy and rainy in the mountains.
Snow is common during the winter in the mountains of Erymanthos and Aroania. Winter high temperatures are around the 10 °C mark throughout the low-lying areas; the regional unit Achaea is subdivided into 5 municipalities. These are: Aigialeia Erymanthos Kalavryta Patras West Achaea As a part of the 2011 Kallikratis government reform, the regional unit Achaea was created out of the former prefecture Achaea; the prefecture had the same territory as the present regional unit. At the same time, the municipalities were reorganised, according to the table below. Province of Aigialeia - Aigio Province of Kalavryta - Kalavryta Province of Patras - PatrasNote: Provinces no longer hold any legal status in Greece; the Achaean League was a Hellenistic-era confederation of city states in Achaea, founded in 280/281 BC. It grew until it included most of Peloponnese, much reducing the Macedonian rule in the area. After Macedon's defeat by the Romans in the early 2nd century BC, the League was able to defeat a weakened Sparta and take control of the entire Peloponnese.
However, as the Roman influence in the area grew, the league erupted into an open revolt against Roman domination, in what is known as Achaean War. The Achaeans were defeated at the Battle of Corinth, the League was dissolved by the Romans. In AD 51/52, Lucius Junius Gallio Annaeanus was proconsul of Achaea, presided over the trial of the Apostle Paul in Corinth; this event provides a secure date for the book of the Acts of the Apostles within the Bible. Achaea remained a province of the Byzantine Empire after the fall of the western Roman Empire. In the 6th and 7th centuries, Slavs invaded the Peloponnese, settled in parts of Achaea as well. By the 9th century, the whole peninsula was under Byzantine control again. However, after the Fourth Crusade several new crusader states were founded in Greece. One of these was the Principality of Achaea, founded in 1205, which like the Roman province covered a much larger area than traditional Achaea. Achaea was recaptured by the Byzantine Empire by 1430, became part of the Despotate of the Morea.
The Despotate of the Morea fell to the Ottoman Empire in 1460. As a part of the Morean War, the Republic of Venice captured Achaea in 1687 and held it until 1715, when the Ottomans recaptured the Peloponnese. Under Ottoman rule, Achaea was part of the Morea Eyalet. In the Greek War of Independence, Aigio was one of the first cities to be liberated by the Greeks and all of Achaea was liberated by the end of 1821. Achaea produced several heroes including Kanaris and Roufos and prime ministers of Greece including Andreas Michalakopoulos as well as some head of states. In the first administrative subdivision of independent Greece, Achaea was part of the Achaea and Elis Prefecture; this was divided into the prefectures of Achaea and Elis in 1899. Achaea and Elis were reunited in 1909, split again in 1930. Achaea saw an influx of refugees that arrived from Asia Minor during the Greco Turkish War of 1919-1922. Tens of thousands were relocated to their camps in the suburbs of Patras and a few villages within the coastline.
One of the camps was named Prosfygika. Achaea today has about one-third of the population of the Peloponnese. Patras, the capital of Achaea, is the third largest city in Greece, behind Athens-Piraeus and Thessaloniki. Two-thirds of the Achaean population live near Patras, more than half within the city limits; the main industrial areas are around Patras. The main cities and towns of Achaea are: Patras 169,034 Aigio 20,664 Kato Achaia 6,880 The monastery Agia Lavra is situated a few kilometres west of Kalavryta on the top of a hill. 12 to 20 km east, is Cave Lakes, with lakes inside. The length is around 300 to 500 m; the mountain hosts the most modern Greek telescope, named Aristarchus and operated by the National Observatory of Athens. A narrow gauge railway track runs for 30 km as a tourist attraction; the track ends off Diakopto. Patras is one of the main industrial and commerce centers in Greece. Temeni is a place, it is owned by a division of The Coca-Cola Company and a parent. There is a small oil refinery near Rio.
Intercity bus transport is provided by KTEL Achaias. The main bus terminal is in the city of Patras; the main highways are: Ionia Odos
The Argonautica is a Greek epic poem written by Apollonius Rhodius in the 3rd century BC. The only surviving Hellenistic epic, the Argonautica tells the myth of the voyage of Jason and the Argonauts to retrieve the Golden Fleece from remote Colchis, their heroic adventures and Jason's relationship with the dangerous Colchian princess/sorceress Medea were well known to Hellenistic audiences, which enabled Apollonius to go beyond a simple narrative, giving it a scholarly emphasis suitable to the times. It was the age of the great Library of Alexandria, his epic incorporates his researches in geography, comparative religion, Homeric literature. However, his main contribution to the epic tradition lies in his development of the love between hero and heroine – he seems to have been the first narrative poet to study "the pathology of love", his Argonautica had a profound impact on Latin poetry: it was translated by Varro Atacinus and imitated by Valerius Flaccus. The Argonautica was an adventure for the poet, one of the major scholars of the Alexandrian period – it was a bold experiment in re-writing Homeric epic in a way that would meet the demanding tastes of his contemporaries.
According to some accounts, a hostile reception led to his exile to Rhodes. The literary fashion was for small, meticulous poems, featuring displays of erudition and paradoxography, as represented by the work of Callimachus. In adapting the epic genre to this audience, Apollonius went a long way towards inventing the romance novel, including narrative techniques like the "interior monologue", whereby the author identifies with a character's thoughts and feelings; the re-evaluation of his work in recent times has led to a mass of innovative studies jostling each other for attention, so that Argonautica has become a daunting adventure for many modern scholars too: Scholars that row against this current feel as if they are sailing through the Clashing Rocks. If the attempt to pass through the clashing mountain of books succeeds, there is no hope of a pause and scholars find themselves in the grip of a debilitating Ancient Greek: ἀμηχανία. Since scholarship is a key feature of this unique story, here is a preview of some of the main issues in the poet's treatment of the Argonaut myth, as addressed by recent scholarship.
A "Callimachian epic"? Callimachus set the standards for Hellenistic aesthetics in poetry and, according to ancient sources, he engaged in a bitter literary feud with Apollonius. Modern scholars dismiss these sources as unreliable and point to similarities in the poetry of the two men. Callimachus, for example, composed a book of verses dealing with aitia, the mythical origins of contemporary phenomena. According to one survey, there are eighty aitia in Argonautica, yet Argonautica is intended to be fundamentally Homeric and therefore seems at odds with the fashionable poetics of Callimachus. The epic hero? Addressing the issue of heroism in Argonautica, the German classicist H. Fränkel once noted some unheroic characteristics of Jason and his crew. In particular, their frequent moods of despair and depression, summed up in the word helplessness. By contrast, the bullying Argonaut Idas seemed to Fränkel an ugly example of the archaic warrior, it looks as if Apollonius meant to underscore the obsolescence of traditional heroism in the Hellenistic period.
These arguments have caused much discussion among scholars about the treatment and nature of heroism in Argonautica. Characters without character? Another fruitful discussion gained impetus from an article by D. A. Van Krevelen, who dismissed all the characters, apart from Medea, as flimsy extras without any interesting qualities. An "episodic epic?" In addition to aitia, Argonautica incorporates descriptions of wonders and marvels, digressions associated with Hellenistic "science", including geography, ethnography and comparative religion. So the question arises: is the poem a unified narrative, or is the epic plot a coathanger for erudite and colourful episodes? There is some dispute about the date when the poem was published, it could have been during the reign of a generation later. According to Jackie Murray, the poem was published at the time of Ptolemy III Euergetes. Apollonius' Argonautica was based on multiple ancient sources, including Pindar; the story of the expedition seems to have been known to the author of the Odyssey, who states, that the ship Argo was the only one that passed between the whirling rocks.
Jason is mentioned several times in the Iliad, but not as the leader of the Argonauts. Hesiod relates the story of Jason saying that he fetched Medeia at the command of his uncle Pelias, that she bore him a son, educated by Cheiron; the first trace of the common tradition that Jason was sent to fetch the golden fleece from Aea, the city of Aeetes, in the eastern boundaries of the earth, occurs in Mimnermus, a contemporary of Solon.
Ages of Man
The Ages of Man are the stages of human existence on the Earth according to Greek mythology and its subsequent Roman interpretation. Both Hesiod and Ovid offered accounts of the successive ages of humanity, which tend to progress from an original, long-gone age in which humans enjoyed a nearly divine existence to the current age of the writer, in which humans are beset by innumerable pains and evils. In the two accounts that survive from ancient Greece and Rome, this degradation of the human condition over time is indicated symbolically with metals of successively decreasing value; the first extant account of the successive ages of humanity comes from the Greek poet Hesiod, in his poem Works and Days. His list is: Golden Age -- The Golden Age is the only age. Created by the immortals who live on Olympus, these humans were said to live among the gods, mingled with them. Peace and harmony prevailed during this age. Humans did not have to work to feed themselves, they lived to a old age but with a youthful appearance and died peacefully.
Their spirits live on as "guardians". Plato in Cratylus recounts the golden race of men, he clarifies that Hesiod did not mean men made of gold, but good and noble. He describes these men as daemons upon the earth. Since δαίμονες is derived from δαήμονες, they are beneficent, preventing ills, guardians of mortals. Silver Age – The Silver Age and every age that follows fall within the rule of Cronus's successor and son, Zeus. Men in the Silver age lived for one hundred years under the dominion of their mothers, they lived only a short time as grown adults, spent that time in strife with one another. During this Age men refused to worship the gods and Zeus destroyed them for their impiety. After death, humans of this age became "blessed spirits" of the underworld. Bronze Age – Men of the Bronze Age were hardened and tough, as war was their purpose and passion. Zeus created these humans out of the ash tree, their armor was forged of bronze, as were their homes, tools. The men of this Age left no named spirits.
This Age came to an end with the flood of Deucalion. Heroic Age – The Heroic Age is the one age that does not correspond with any metal, it is the only age that improves upon the age it follows. It was the heroes of this Age who fought at Troy; this race of humans went to Elysium. Iron Age – Hesiod finds himself in the Iron Age. During this age humans live an existence of misery. Children dishonor their parents, brother fights with brother and the social contract between guest and host is forgotten. During this age might makes right, bad men use lies to be thought good. At the height of this age, humans no longer feel indignation at wrongdoing; the Roman poet Ovid tells a similar myth of Four Ages in Book 1.89–150 of the Metamorphoses. His account is similar with the exception that he omits the Heroic Age. Ovid emphasizes the peace that defined the Golden Age, he adds that in this age, men did not yet know the art of navigation and therefore did not explore the larger world, no man had knowledge of any arts but pre agriculture.
In the Silver Age, Jupiter introduces the seasons and men consequentially learn the art of agriculture and architecture. In the Bronze Age, Ovid writes, men were not impiety. In the Iron Age, men demarcate nations with boundaries. Truth and loyalty are nowhere to be found; these mythological ages are sometimes associated with historical timelines. In the chronology of Saint Jerome, the Golden Age lasts c. 1710 to 1674 BC, the Silver Age 1674 to 1628 BC, the Bronze Age 1628 to 1472 BC, the Heroic Age 1460 to 1103 BC, while Hesiod's Iron Age was considered as still ongoing by Saint Jerome in the fourth century AD. Similar concepts include: Christian: Six Ages of the World, Dispensationalism Hindu: Yuga Jain: Utsarpiṇī and Avasarpiṇī Mesoamerican: Five Suns Giambattista Vico's ricorso: the return of the society to a more primitive condition JRR Tolkien's fictional "Four Ages" Oswald Spengler's Civilizational model Modern archaeology: Three-age system, with each of the stages further divided into sub-stages.
Marx's theory of history Ages of Man - at Greek Mythology Link Hesiod's Five Ages of Man - "The Five Ages of Man: Hesiod wrote about a Golden Age under Cronus" by N. S. Gill Ages of Man. Goltzius Engravings from the De Verda collection Theoi Project: Ages of Man
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 20 regions of Italy. It is one of the five Italian autonomous regions, in Southern Italy along with surrounding minor islands referred to as Regione Siciliana. Sicily is located in the central Mediterranean Sea, south of the Italian Peninsula, from which it is separated by the narrow Strait of Messina, its most prominent landmark is Mount Etna, the tallest active volcano in Europe, one of the most active in the world 3,329 m high. The island has a typical Mediterranean climate; the earliest archaeological evidence of human activity on the island dates from as early as 12,000 BC. By around 750 BC, Sicily had three Phoenician and a dozen Greek colonies and, for the next 600 years, it was the site of the Sicilian Wars and the Punic Wars. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, Sicily was ruled during the Early Middle Ages by the Vandals, the Ostrogoths, the Byzantine Empire, the Emirate of Sicily; the Norman conquest of southern Italy led to the creation of the Kingdom of Sicily, subsequently ruled by the Hohenstaufen, the Capetian House of Anjou and the House of Habsburg.
It was unified under the House of Bourbon with the Kingdom of Naples as the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. It became part of Italy in 1860 following the Expedition of the Thousand, a revolt led by Giuseppe Garibaldi during the Italian unification, a plebiscite. Sicily was given special status as an autonomous region on 15th May 1946, 18 days before the Italian constitutional referendum of 1946. Albeit, much of the autonomy still remains unapplied financial autonomy, because the autonomy-activating laws have been deferred to be approved by the parithetic committee, since 1946. Sicily has a rich and unique culture with regard to the arts, literature and architecture, it is home to important archaeological and ancient sites, such as the Necropolis of Pantalica, the Valley of the Temples and Selinunte. Sicily has a triangular shape, earning it the name Trinacria. To the east, it is separated from the Italian mainland by the Strait of Messina, about 3 km wide in the north, about 16 km wide in the southern part.
The northern and southern coasts are each about 280 km long measured as a straight line, while the eastern coast measures around 180 km. The total area of the island is 25,711 km2, while the Autonomous Region of Sicily has an area of 27,708 km2; the terrain of inland Sicily is hilly and is intensively cultivated wherever possible. Along the northern coast, the mountain ranges of Madonie, 2,000 m, Nebrodi, 1,800 m, Peloritani, 1,300 m, are an extension of the mainland Apennines; the cone of Mount Etna dominates the eastern coast. In the southeast lie the lower Hyblaean Mountains, 1,000 m; the mines of the Enna and Caltanissetta districts were part of a leading sulphur-producing area throughout the 19th century, but have declined since the 1950s. Sicily and its surrounding small islands have some active volcanoes. Mount Etna is the largest active volcano in Europe and still casts black ash over the island with its ever-present eruptions, it stands 3,329 metres high, though this varies with summit eruptions.
It is the highest mountain in Italy south of the Alps. Etna covers an area of 1,190 km2 with a basal circumference of 140 km; this makes it by far the largest of the three active volcanoes in Italy, being about two and a half times the height of the next largest, Mount Vesuvius. In Greek mythology, the deadly monster Typhon was trapped under the mountain by Zeus, the god of the sky. Mount Etna is regarded as a cultural symbol and icon of Sicily; the Aeolian Islands in the Tyrrhenian Sea, to the northeast of mainland Sicily form a volcanic complex, include Stromboli. The three volcanoes of Vulcano and Lipari are currently active, although the latter is dormant. Off the southern coast of Sicily, the underwater volcano of Ferdinandea, part of the larger Empedocles volcano, last erupted in 1831, it is located between the island of Pantelleria. The autonomous region includes several neighbouring islands: the Aegadian Islands, the Aeolian Islands and Lampedusa; the island is drained by several rivers, most of which flow through the central area and enter the sea at the south of the island.
The Salso flows through parts of Enna and Caltanissetta before entering the Mediterranean Sea at the port of Licata. To the east, the Alcantara flows through the province of Messina and enters the sea at Giardini Naxos, the Simeto, which flows into the Ionian Sea south of Catania. Other important rivers on the island are the Platani in the southwest. Sicily has a typical Mediterranean climate with mild and wet winters and hot, dry summers with changeable intermediate seasons. On the coasts the south-western, the climate is affected by the African currents and summers can be scorching. Sicily is seen as an island of warm winters but above all along the Tyrrhenian coast and in the inland areas, winters can be cold, with typical continental climate. Snow falls in abundance above 900–1000 metres, but stronger cold waves can carry it in the hills and in coastal cities on the northern coast of the island; the interi