The Ancient Greek language includes the forms of Greek used in Ancient Greece and the ancient world from around the 9th century BCE to the 6th century CE. It is roughly divided into the Archaic period, Classical period, Hellenistic period, it is succeeded by medieval Greek. Koine is regarded as a separate historical stage of its own, although in its earliest form it resembled Attic Greek and in its latest form it approaches Medieval Greek. Prior to the Koine period, Greek of the classic and earlier periods included several regional dialects. Ancient Greek was the language of Homer and of fifth-century Athenian historians and philosophers, it has contributed many words to English vocabulary and has been a standard subject of study in educational institutions of the Western world since the Renaissance. This article contains information about the Epic and Classical periods of the language. Ancient Greek was a pluricentric language, divided into many dialects; the main dialect groups are Attic and Ionic, Aeolic and Doric, many of them with several subdivisions.
Some dialects are found in standardized literary forms used in literature, while others are attested only in inscriptions. There are several historical forms. Homeric Greek is a literary form of Archaic Greek used in the epic poems, the "Iliad" and "Odyssey", in poems by other authors. Homeric Greek had significant differences in grammar and pronunciation from Classical Attic and other Classical-era dialects; the origins, early form and development of the Hellenic language family are not well understood because of a lack of contemporaneous evidence. Several theories exist about what Hellenic dialect groups may have existed between the divergence of early Greek-like speech from the common Proto-Indo-European language and the Classical period, they differ in some of the detail. The only attested dialect from this period is Mycenaean Greek, but its relationship to the historical dialects and the historical circumstances of the times imply that the overall groups existed in some form. Scholars assume that major Ancient Greek period dialect groups developed not than 1120 BCE, at the time of the Dorian invasion—and that their first appearances as precise alphabetic writing began in the 8th century BCE.
The invasion would not be "Dorian" unless the invaders had some cultural relationship to the historical Dorians. The invasion is known to have displaced population to the Attic-Ionic regions, who regarded themselves as descendants of the population displaced by or contending with the Dorians; the Greeks of this period believed there were three major divisions of all Greek people—Dorians and Ionians, each with their own defining and distinctive dialects. Allowing for their oversight of Arcadian, an obscure mountain dialect, Cypriot, far from the center of Greek scholarship, this division of people and language is quite similar to the results of modern archaeological-linguistic investigation. One standard formulation for the dialects is: West vs. non-west Greek is the strongest marked and earliest division, with non-west in subsets of Ionic-Attic and Aeolic vs. Arcadocypriot, or Aeolic and Arcado-Cypriot vs. Ionic-Attic. Non-west is called East Greek. Arcadocypriot descended more from the Mycenaean Greek of the Bronze Age.
Boeotian had come under a strong Northwest Greek influence, can in some respects be considered a transitional dialect. Thessalian had come under Northwest Greek influence, though to a lesser degree. Pamphylian Greek, spoken in a small area on the southwestern coast of Anatolia and little preserved in inscriptions, may be either a fifth major dialect group, or it is Mycenaean Greek overlaid by Doric, with a non-Greek native influence. Most of the dialect sub-groups listed above had further subdivisions equivalent to a city-state and its surrounding territory, or to an island. Doric notably had several intermediate divisions as well, into Island Doric, Southern Peloponnesus Doric, Northern Peloponnesus Doric; the Lesbian dialect was Aeolic Greek. All the groups were represented by colonies beyond Greece proper as well, these colonies developed local characteristics under the influence of settlers or neighbors speaking different Greek dialects; the dialects outside the Ionic group are known from inscriptions, notable exceptions being: fragments of the works of the poet Sappho from the island of Lesbos, in Aeolian, the poems of the Boeotian poet Pindar and other lyric poets in Doric.
After the conquests of Alexander the Great in the late 4th century BCE, a new international dialect known as Koine or Common Greek developed based on Attic Greek, but with influence from other dialects. This dialect replaced most of the older dialects, although Doric dialect has survived in the Tsakonian language, spoken in the region of modern Sparta. Doric has passed down its aorist terminations into most verbs of Demotic Greek. By about the 6th century CE, the Koine had metamorphosized into Medieval Greek. Ancient Macedonian was an Indo-European language at least related to Greek, but its exact relationship is unclear because of insufficient data: a dialect of Greek; the Macedonian dialect (or l
Greek Civil War
Τhe Greek Civil War was fought in Greece from 1946 to 1949 between the Greek government army — backed by the United Kingdom and the United States — and the Democratic Army of Greece — the military branch of the Communist Party of Greece — backed by Yugoslavia and Bulgaria. It is considered the first proxy war of the Cold War, although the Soviet Union avoided sending aid; the fighting resulted in the defeat of the DSE by the Hellenic Army. Founded by the Communist Party of Greece and supported by neighboring and newly founded Socialist States such as Yugoslavia and Bulgaria, the Democratic Army of Greece included many personnel who had fought as partisans against German and Bulgarian occupation forces during the Second World War of 1939–1945; the civil war resulted from a polarized struggle between left and right ideologies that started in 1943. From 1944 each side targeted the power vacuum resulting from the end of German-Italian occupation during World War II; the struggle became one of the first conflicts of the Cold War and represents the first example of Cold War power postwar involvement in the internal politics of a foreign country.
Greece in the end was funded by the US and joined NATO, while the insurgents were demoralized by the bitter split between the Soviet Union's Joseph Stalin, who wanted the war ended, Yugoslavia's Josip Broz Tito, who wanted it to continue. Tito was committed to helping the Greek Communists in their efforts, a stance that caused political complications with Stalin, as he had agreed with Winston Churchill not to support the Communists in Greece, as documented in their Percentages Agreement of October 1944; the first signs of the civil war occurred in 1942 during the German occupation. With the Greek government in exile unable to influence the situation at home, various resistance groups of differing political affiliations emerged, the dominant ones being the leftist National Liberation Front, its military branch the Greek People's Liberation Army, controlled by the KKE. Starting in autumn 1943, friction between the EAM and the other resistance groups resulted in scattered clashes, which continued until spring 1944, when an agreement was reached forming a national unity government that included six EAM-affiliated ministers.
The immediate prelude of the civil war took place in Athens, on December 3, 1944, less than two months after the Germans had retreated from the area. After an order to disarm, leftists called for resistance. A riot erupted and Greek government gendarmes, with British forces standing in the background, opened fire on a pro-EAM rally, killing 28 demonstrators and injuring dozens; the rally had been organised under the pretext of a demonstration against the perceived impunity of the collaborators and the general disarmament ultimatum, signed by Ronald Scobie. The battle lasted 33 days and resulted in the defeat of the EAM; the subsequent signing of the Treaty of Varkiza spelled the end of the left-wing organization's ascendancy: the ELAS was disarmed while the EAM soon after lost its multi-party character, to become dominated by KKE. All the while, White Terror was unleashed against the supporters of the left, further escalating the tensions between the dominant factions of the nation; the war erupted in 1946, when forces of former ELAS partisans who found shelter in their hideouts and were controlled by the KKE organized the DSE and its High Command headquarters.
The KKE backed up the endeavor, deciding that there was no alternative way to act against the internationally recognized government, formed after the 1946 elections, which the KKE had boycotted. The Communists formed a provisional government in December 1947 and used the DSE as the military branch of this government; the neighboring communist states of Albania and Bulgaria offered logistical support to this provisional government to the forces operating in the north of Greece. Despite setbacks suffered by government forces from 1946 to 1948, increased American aid, the failure of the DSE to attract sufficient recruits and the side-effects of the Tito–Stalin split of 1948 led to victory for the government troops; the final victory of the western-allied government forces led to Greece's membership in NATO and helped to define the ideological balance of power in the Aegean Sea for the entire Cold War. The civil war left Greece with a vehemently anti-communist security establishment, which would lead to the establishment of the Greek military junta of 1967–74 and a legacy of political polarisation that lasts until today.
While Axis forces approached Athens in April 1941, King George II and his government escaped to Egypt, where they proclaimed a government-in-exile, recognised by the UK but not by the Soviet Union. Winston Churchill encouraged King George II of Greece to appoint a moderate cabinet; as a result, only two of his ministers were previous members of the 4th of August Regime under Ioannis Metaxas, who had both seized power in a coup d'état with the blessing of the king and governed the country since August 1936. The exiled government's inability to influence affairs inside Greece rendered it irrelevant in the minds of most Greek people. At the same time, the Germans set up a collaborationist government in Athens, which lacked legitimacy and support; the puppet regime was further undermined when economic mismanagement in wartime conditions created runaway inflation, acute food shortages and famine among the civilian population
Laconia is a region of Greece in the southeastern part of the Peloponnese peninsula. Its administrative capital is Sparta; the word laconic is derived from the name of the region by analogy—to speak in a concise way, as the Spartans were reputed by the Athenians to do. Laconia is bordered by Messenia to the west and Arcadia to the north and is surrounded by the Myrtoan Sea to the east and by the Laconian Gulf and the Mediterranean Sea to the south, it encompasses a large part of the Mani Peninsula. The Mani Peninsula is in the west region of Lakonia; the islands of Kythira and Antikythera lie to the south, but they administratively belong to the Attica regional unit of islands. The island, situated between the Laconian mainland and Kythira, is part of Laconia; the Eurotas is the longest river in the prefecture. The valley of the Eurotas is predominantly an agricultural region that contains many citrus groves, olive groves, pasture lands, it is the location of the largest orange production in the Peloponnese and in all of Greece.
Lakonia, a brand of orange juice, is based in Amykles. The main mountain ranges are the Parnon in the northeast. Taygetus, known as Pentadaktylos throughout the Middle Ages, is west of Sparta and the Eurotas valley, it is the highest mountain in Laconia and the Peloponnese and is covered with pine trees. Two roads join the Messenia and Laconia prefectures: one is a tortuous mountain pass through Taygetus and the other bypasses the mountain via the Mani district to the south; the stalactite cave, Dirou, a major tourist attraction, is located south of Areopolis in the southwest of Laconia. Laconia has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers. Snow is rare on the coast throughout the winter but is common in the mountains. Evidence of Neolithic settlement in southern Laconia has been found during excavations of the Alepotrypa cave site. In ancient Greece, this was the principal region of the Spartan state. For much of classical antiquity the Spartan sphere of influence expanded to Messenia, whose inhabitants were enslaved.
Significant archaeological recovery exists at the Vaphio-tomb site in Laconia. Found here is advanced Bronze Age art as well as evidence of cultural associations with the contemporaneous Minoan culture on Crete. Laconia saw several battles. From the early-2nd century BC until 395 AD, it was a part of the Roman Empire. In the medieval period, Laconia formed part of the Byzantine Empire. Following the Fourth Crusade, it was conquered by the Frankish Principality of Achaea. In the 1260s, the Byzantines recovered Mystras and other fortresses in the region and managed to evict the Franks from Laconia, which became the nucleus of a new Byzantine province. By the mid-14th century, this evolved into the Despotate of Morea, held by the last Greek ruling dynasty, the Palaiologoi. With the fall of the Despotate to the Ottomans in 1460, Laconia was conquered as well. With the exception of a 30-year interval of Venetian rule, Laconia remained under Ottoman control until the outbreak of the Greek War of Independence of 1821.
Following independence, Sparta was selected as the capital of the modern prefecture, its economy and agriculture expanded. With the incorporation of the British-ruled Ionian Islands into Greece in 1864, Elafonissos became part of the prefecture. After World War II and the Greek Civil War, its population began to somewhat decline, as people moved from the villages toward the larger cities of Greece and abroad. In 1992, a devastating fire ruined the finest olive crops in the northern part of the prefecture, affected the area of Sellasia along with Oinountas and its surrounding areas. Firefighters and planes battled for days to put out the horrific fire; the Mani portion along with Gytheio became famous in Greece for filming episodes of Vendetta, broadcast on Mega Channel throughout Greece and abroad on Mega Cosmos. In early 2006, flooding ruined olive and citrus crops as well as properties and villages along the Eurotas river. In the summer 2006, a terrible fire devastated a part of the Mani Peninsula, ruining forests and numerous villages.
The regional unit, Laconia, is subdivided into five municipalities. These are: East Mani Elafonisos Eurotas Monemvasia Sparta As a part of the 2011 Kallikratis government reform, regional unit Laconia was created out of the former prefecture Laconia; the prefecture had the same territory as the present regional unit. At the same time, the municipalities were reorganised, according to the table below. Epidavros Limira Province – Molaoi Gytheio Province – Gytheio Lacedaemonia Province – Sparti Oitylo Province – AreopoliNote: Provinces no longer hold any legal status in Greece. 1907: 87,106 1991: 95,696 2001: 94,918 2011: 89,138The main cities and towns of Laconia are: Sparti 17,408 Gytheio 4,717 Neapoli 3,130 Skala 3,089 Greek National Road 39, Tripoli – Sparti – Gytheio Greek National Road 82, Pylos – Kalamata – Sparti Greek National Road 86, Gytheio – Monemvasia Molaoi to Leonidi Road, E, NE FLY FM 89,7. POLITIA 90,7 – ΠΟΛΙΤΕΙΑ 90.7 Radio Sparti – 92.7 FM Radiofonias Notias Lakonias – 93.5 Star FM – 94.7 Ellada TV – UHF 43, Sparta TV Notias Lakonias – Molaoi Λακωνικός Τύπος Ελεύθερη Άποψη Νέα Σπάρτη Παρατηρητής της Λακωνίας List of settlements in Laconia List of traditional Greek place names Laconic phrase
Natural History (Pliny)
The Natural History is a book about the whole of the natural world in Latin by Pliny the Elder, a Roman author and naval commander who died in 79 AD. It is one of the largest single works to have survived from the Roman Empire to the modern day and purports to cover all ancient knowledge; the work's subject area is thus not limited to. It is encyclopedic in scope; the work is divided into 37 books, organised into ten volumes. These cover topics including astronomy, geography, anthropology, human physiology, botany, horticulture, mining, sculpture and precious stones. Pliny's Natural History became a model for encyclopedias and scholarly works as a result of its breadth of subject matter, its referencing of original authors, its index; the work is dedicated to the emperor Titus, a son of Pliny's close friend, the emperor Vespasian, in the first year of Titus's reign. It is the only work by Pliny to have survived, the last that he published, he began it in 77, had not made a final revision at the time of his death during the AD 79 eruption of Vesuvius.
Pliny's Natural History was written alongside other substantial works. Pliny combined his scholarly activities with a busy career as an imperial administrator for the emperor Vespasian. Much of his writing was done at night; as for the nocturnal hours spent writing, these were seen not as a loss of sleep but as an addition to life, for as he states in the preface, Vita vigilia est, "to be alive is to be watchful", in a military metaphor of a sentry keeping watch in the night. Pliny claims to be the only Roman to have undertaken such a work, in his prayer for the blessing of the universal mother: Hail to thee, thou parent of all things! and do thou deign to show thy favour unto me, alone of all the citizens of Rome, have, in thy every department, thus made known thy praise. The Natural History is encyclopaedic in scope. However, it does have structure: Pliny uses Aristotle's division of nature to recreate the natural world in literary form. Rather than presenting compartmentalised, stand-alone entries arranged alphabetically, Pliny's ordered natural landscape is a coherent whole, offering the reader a guided tour: "a brief excursion under our direction among the whole of the works of nature..."
The work is unified but varied: "My subject is the world of nature... or in other words, life," he tells Titus. Nature for Pliny was divine, a pantheistic concept inspired by the Stoic philosophy which underlies much of his thought, but the deity in question was a goddess whose main purpose was to serve the human race: "nature, life" is human life in a natural landscape. After an initial survey of cosmology and geography, Pliny starts his treatment of animals with the human race, "for whose sake great Nature appears to have created all other things"; this teleological view of nature was common in antiquity and is crucial to the understanding of the Natural History. The components of nature are not just described in and for themselves, but with a view to their role in human life. Pliny devotes a number of the books to plants, with a focus on their medicinal value. Pliny's premise is distinct from modern ecological theories, reflecting the prevailing sentiment of his time. Pliny's work reflects Rome's imperial expansion which brought new and exciting things to the capital: exotic eastern spices, strange animals to be put on display or herded into the arena the alleged phoenix sent to the emperor Claudius in AD 47 – although, as Pliny admits, this was acknowledged to be a fake.
Pliny repeated Aristotle's maxim. Nature's variety and versatility were claimed to be infinite: "When I have observed nature she has always induced me to deem no statement about her incredible." This led Pliny to recount rumours of strange peoples on the edges of the world. These monstrous races – the Cynocephali or Dog-Heads, the Sciapodae, whose single foot could act as a sunshade, the mouthless Astomi, who lived on scents – were not new, they had been mentioned in the 5th century BC by the Greek historian Herodotus but Pliny made them better known."As full of variety as nature itself", stated Pliny's nephew, Pliny the Younger, this verdict explains the appeal of the Natural History since Pliny's death in the eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79. Pliny had gone to investigate the strange cloud – "shaped like an umbrella pine", according to his nephew – rising from the mountain; the Natural History was one of the first ancient European texts to be printed, in Venice in 1469. Philemon Holland's English translation of 1601 has influenced literature since.
The Natural History consists of 37 books. Pliny devised a summarium, or list of contents, at the beginning of the work, interpreted by modern printers as a table of contents; the table below is a summary based on modern names for topics. Pliny's purpose in writing the Natural History was to cover all learning and art so far as they are connected with nature or draw their materials from nature, he says:My subject is a barren one – t
RMS Titanic was a British passenger liner that sank in the North Atlantic Ocean in 1912, after colliding with an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. Of the estimated 2,224 passengers and crew aboard, more than 1,500 died, making it one of modern history's deadliest commercial marine disasters during peacetime. RMS Titanic was the largest ship afloat at the time she entered service and was the second of three Olympic-class ocean liners operated by the White Star Line, she was built by the Wolff shipyard in Belfast. Thomas Andrews, chief naval architect of the shipyard at the time, died in the disaster. Titanic was under the command of Capt. Edward Smith, who went down with the ship; the ocean liner carried some of the wealthiest people in the world, as well as hundreds of emigrants from Great Britain and Ireland and elsewhere throughout Europe who were seeking a new life in the United States. The first-class accommodation was designed to be the pinnacle of comfort and luxury, with an on-board gymnasium, swimming pool, high-class restaurants and opulent cabins.
A high-powered radiotelegraph transmitter was available for sending passenger "marconigrams" and for the ship's operational use. Although Titanic had advanced safety features such as watertight compartments and remotely activated watertight doors, it only carried enough lifeboats for 1,178 people—about half the number on board, one third of her total capacity—due to outdated maritime safety regulations; the ship carried 16 lifeboat davits. However, Titanic carried only a total of 20 lifeboats, four of which were collapsible and proved hard to launch during the sinking. After leaving Southampton on 10 April 1912, Titanic called at Cherbourg in France and Queenstown in Ireland before heading west to New York. On 14 April, four days into the crossing and about 375 miles south of Newfoundland, she hit an iceberg at 11:40 p.m. ship's time. The collision caused the hull plates to buckle inwards along her starboard side and opened five of her sixteen watertight compartments to the sea. Meanwhile and some crew members were evacuated in lifeboats, many of which were launched only loaded.
A disproportionate number of men were left aboard because of a "women and children first" protocol for loading lifeboats. At 2:20 a.m. she foundered with well over one thousand people still aboard. Just under two hours after Titanic sank, the Cunard liner RMS Carpathia arrived and brought aboard an estimated 705 survivors; the disaster was met with worldwide shock and outrage at the huge loss of life and the regulatory and operational failures that led to it. Public inquiries in Britain and the United States led to major improvements in maritime safety. One of their most important legacies was the establishment in 1914 of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, which still governs maritime safety. Additionally, several new wireless regulations were passed around the world in an effort to learn from the many missteps in wireless communications—which could have saved many more passengers; the wreck of Titanic was discovered in 1985 during a US military mission, it remains on the seabed.
The ship was split in two and is disintegrating at a depth of 12,415 feet. Thousands of artefacts have been displayed at museums around the world. Titanic has become one of the most famous ships in history. Titanic is the second largest ocean liner wreck in the world, only beaten by her sister HMHS Britannic, the largest sunk, although she holds the record as the largest sunk while in service as a liner due to Britannic being used as a hospital ship at the time of her sinking; the final survivor of the sinking, Millvina Dean, aged two months at the time, died in 2009 at the age of 97. The name Titanic derives from the Titan of Greek mythology. Built in Belfast, Ireland, in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, the RMS Titanic was the second of the three Olympic-class ocean liners—the first was the RMS Olympic and the third was the HMHS Britannic. Britannic was to be called Gigantic and was to be over 1,000 feet long, they were by far the largest vessels of the British shipping company White Star Line's fleet, which comprised 29 steamers and tenders in 1912.
The three ships had their genesis in a discussion in mid-1907 between the White Star Line's chairman, J. Bruce Ismay, the American financier J. P. Morgan, who controlled the White Star Line's parent corporation, the International Mercantile Marine Co.. The White Star Line faced an increasing challenge from its main rivals Cunard, which had launched the Lusitania and the Mauretania—the fastest passenger ships in service—and the German lines Hamburg America and Norddeutscher Lloyd. Ismay preferred to compete on size rather than speed and proposed to commission a new class of liners that would be larger than anything that had gone before as well as being the last word in comfort and luxury; the company sought an upgrade in their fleet in response to the Cunard giants but to replace their oldest pair of passenger ships still in service, being the SS Teutonic of 1889 and SS Majestic of 1890. Teutonic was replaced by Olympic. Majestic would be brought back into her old spot on White Star's New York service after Titanic's loss.
The ships were constructed by the Belfast shipbuilders Harland and Wolff, who had a long-established relati
Cape Sounion is the promontory at the southernmost tip of the Attic peninsula, 8 kilometres south of the town of Lavrio, 70 kilometres southeast of Athens. It is part of East Attica, Greece. Cape Sounion is noted for its Temple of Poseidon, one of the major monuments of the Golden Age of Athens, its remains are perched on the headland, surrounded on three sides by the sea. The earliest literary reference to Sounion is in Homer's Odyssey; the story recounts that as the various Greek commanders sailed back from Troy, the helmsman of the ship of King Menelaus of Sparta died at his post while rounding "Holy Sounion, Cape of Athens." Menelaus landed at Sounion to give his companion full funeral honours. Archaeological finds on the site date from as early as 700 BC. Herodotus mentions that in sixth century BC, the Athenians celebrated a quinquennial festival at Sounion, which involved Athens' leaders sailing to the cape in a sacred boat. Sounion was a deme of the Leontis tribe before its fortification in the Peloponnesian War.
It sent four men to the ancient Boule of 500 at the time of Cleisthenes, six men to the Boule of 600. In the 2nd century BC, Sounion is still on record as a deme, but now considered part of the recently-introduced Attalid phyle; the deme was located between Amphitrope to Thorikos to the north. Its territory included parts of the Mines of Laurion. According to Traill, the center of the settlement was situated somewhat to the north of the cape, between the modern settlements of Ano Sounio and Kato Sounio. Sounion was fortified in the nineteenth year of the Peloponnesian War for the purpose of protecting the passage of the cornships to Athens, was regarded from that time as one of the principal fortreses of Attica, its proximity to the silver mines of Laurium contributed to its prosperity, which passed into a proverb. The circuit of the walls may still be traced, except where the precipitous nature of the rocks afforded a natural defence; the walls which are fortified with square towers, are of the most regular Hellenic masonry, enclose a space or a little more than half a mile in circumference.
The southern part of Attica, extending northwards from the promontory of Sounion as far as Thoricus on the east, Anaphlystus on the west, is called by Herodotus the Suniac angle. Though Sounion was sacred to Athena, we learn from Aristophanes that Poseidon was worshipped there; the original, Archaic-period temple of Poseidon on the site was built of tufa. The Sounion Kouros, discovered in 1906 in a pit east of the temple alongside fragments of other statues, was one of a number of votive statues dedicated to Poseidon which stood in front of the god's sanctuary; the archaic temple was destroyed in 480 BC by Persian troops during Xerxes I's invasion of Greece. After they defeated Xerxes in the naval Battle of Salamis, the Athenians placed an entire captured enemy trireme at Sounion as a trophy dedicated to Poseidon; the temple of Poseidon at Sounion was constructed in 444–440 BC. This was during the ascendancy of the Athenian statesman Pericles, who rebuilt the Parthenon in Athens, it was built on the ruins of a temple dating from the Archaic period.
It is perched above the sea at a height of 60 metres. The design of the temple is a typical hexastyle. Only some columns of the Sounion temple stand today, but when intact it would have resembled the contemporary and well-preserved Temple of Hephaestus beneath the Acropolis, which may have been designed by the same architect; as with all Greek temples, the Poseidon building was rectangular, with a colonnade on all four sides. The total number of original columns was 36: 15 columns still stand today; the columns are of the Doric Order. They were made of locally quarried white marble, they were 6.10 m high, with a diameter of 79 cm at the top. At the center of the temple, colonnade would have been the hall of worship, a windowless rectangular room, similar to the intact hall at the Temple of Hephaestus, it would have contained, at one end facing the entrance, the cult image, a colossal, ceiling-height bronze statue of Poseidon. The temple of Athena Sounias, some 300 m northeast of the temple of Poseidon, is built on a low hill.
It was built in 470 BC. Its architecture was unusual inasmuch as it had a colonnades on the southern and eastern, but not on the western or northern sides, a peculiarity mentioned by Vitruvius, it was built adjacent to a peribolos identified as the burial mound and shrine to Phrontis, the helmsman of Menelaus whose burial at Sounion is mentioned in the Odyssey. A smaller Doric temple next to the temple of Athena is thought to have been dedicated either to the hero Phrontis or to Artemis. A deep pit to the southeast of the temenos was used to deposit the remains of the Archaic-period offerings destroyed in the Persian invasion; the temple of Athena was demolished in the 1st century AD, parts of its columns were taken to Athens to be used in the South-East temple of the Agora. In 413 BC, during the Peloponnes
Homer is the legendary author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, two epic poems that are the central works of ancient Greek literature. The Iliad is set during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy by a coalition of Greek kingdoms, it focuses on a quarrel between King Agamemnon and the warrior Achilles lasting a few weeks during the last year of the war. The Odyssey focuses on the ten-year journey home of Odysseus, king of Ithaca, after the fall of Troy. Many accounts of Homer's life circulated in classical antiquity, the most widespread being that he was a blind bard from Ionia, a region of central coastal Anatolia in present-day Turkey. Modern scholars consider these accounts legendary; the Homeric Question – concerning by whom, when and under what circumstances the Iliad and Odyssey were composed – continues to be debated. Broadly speaking, modern scholarly opinion falls into two groups. One holds that most of the Odyssey are the works of a single poet of genius; the other considers the Homeric poems to be the result of a process of working and reworking by many contributors, that "Homer" is best seen as a label for an entire tradition.
It is accepted that the poems were composed at some point around the late eighth or early seventh century BC. The poems are in Homeric Greek known as Epic Greek, a literary language which shows a mixture of features of the Ionic and Aeolic dialects from different centuries. Most researchers believe that the poems were transmitted orally. From antiquity until the present day, the influence of the Homeric epics on Western civilization has been great, inspiring many of its most famous works of literature, music and film; the Homeric epics were the greatest influence on education. Today only the Iliad and Odyssey are associated with the name'Homer'. In antiquity, a large number of other works were sometimes attributed to him, including the Homeric Hymns, the Contest of Homer and Hesiod, the Little Iliad, the Nostoi, the Thebaid, the Cypria, the Epigoni, the comic mini-epic Batrachomyomachia, the Margites, the Capture of Oechalia, the Phocais; these claims are not considered authentic today and were by no means universally accepted in the ancient world.
As with the multitude of legends surrounding Homer's life, they indicate little more than the centrality of Homer to ancient Greek culture. Many traditions circulated in the ancient world concerning Homer. Modern scholarly consensus is; some claims were repeated often. They include that Homer was blind, that he was born in Chios, that he was the son of the river Meles and the nymph Critheïs, that he was a wandering bard, that he composed a varying list of other works, that he died either in Ios or after failing to solve a riddle set by fishermen, various explanations for the name "Homer"; the two best known ancient biographies of Homer are the Life of Homer by the Pseudo-Herodotus and the Contest of Homer and Hesiod. The study of Homer is one of the oldest topics in scholarship, dating back to antiquity. Nonetheless, the aims of Homeric studies have changed over the course of the millennia; the earliest preserved comments on Homer concern his treatment of the gods, which hostile critics such as the poet Xenophanes of Colophon denounced as immoral.
The allegorist Theagenes of Rhegium is said to have defended Homer by arguing that the Homeric poems are allegories. The Iliad and the Odyssey were used as school texts in ancient Greek and Hellenistic cultures, they were the first literary works taught to all students. The Iliad its first few books, was far more intently studied than the Odyssey during the Hellenistic and Roman periods; as a result of the poems' prominence in classical Greek education, extensive commentaries on them developed to explain parts of the poems that were culturally or linguistically difficult. During the Hellenistic and Roman Periods, many interpreters the Stoics, who believed that Homeric poems conveyed Stoic doctrines, regarded them as allegories, containing hidden wisdom; because of the Homeric poems' extensive use in education, many authors believed that Homer's original purpose had been to educate. Homer's wisdom became so praised that he began to acquire the image of a prototypical philosopher. Byzantine scholars such as Eustathius of Thessalonica and John Tzetzes produced commentaries and scholia to Homer in the twelfth century.
Eustathius's commentary on the Iliad alone is massive, sprawling nearly 4,000 oversized pages in a twenty-first century printed version and his commentary on the Odyssey an additional nearly 2,000. In 1488, the Greek scholar Demetrios Chalkokondyles published the editio princeps of the Homeric poems; the earliest modern Homeric scholars started with the same basic approaches towards the Homeric poems as scholars in antiquity. The allegorical interpretation of the Homeric poems, so prevalent in antiquity returned to become the prevailing view of the Renaissance. Renaissance humanists praised Homer as the archetypically wise poet, whose writings contain hidden wisdom, disguised through allegory. In western Europe during the Renaissance, Virgil was more read than Homer and Homer was seen through a Virgilian lens. In 1664, contradicting the widespread praise of Homer as the epitome of wisdom, François Hédelin, abbé d'Aubignac wrote a s