Ancient Greek Essay

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Notes: Plato's birth was around 428 B.C. Both of his parents came from the Greek aristocracy. Plato's father, Ariston, descended from the kings of Athens and Messenia. His mother, Perictione, is said to be related to the 6th century B.C. Greek statesman Solon. Plato's father died when he was young, and his mother remarried her uncle. Plato was a student of Socrates and a teacher of Aristotle. While Socrates never wrote anything of his own, his philosophy is known through the works of Plato. Plato was very influenced by Socrates’ thinking .which Plato witnessed when he was 29 years old. 35 dialogues and 13 letters have been attributed to Plato, Plato is regarded as one the fathers of Western philosophy, and his Theory of Forms and idea of the ideal state, both put forward in The Republic are still discussed today. LOOK AT SLIDE Classical & Pre classical era: This period of Greek literature stretches from Homer until the 4th century BC & the rise of Alexander the Great. English mathematician & philosopher Alfred North Whitehead once claimed that all of philosophy is but a footnote to Plato. To suggest that all of Western literature is more than a footnote to the writings of ancient Greece is an exaggeration. But it is nevertheless true that the Greek world of thought was so far ranging that there is scarily an idea discussed today not already debated by the ancient writers. The Greeks wrote a great deal, and a surprising amount of what they wrote is still available to us 2500 years later. Their writing is traditionally divided in well-defined literary genres: 1. Epic Poetry: Around 700 BC Homer wrote 2 connected epics, the Iliad & the Odyssey. While the Iliad is pure tragedy, the Odyssey is a mixture of tragedy & comedy. It is the story of odysseus, one of the warriors of troy. After 10 years fighting the war he spends another ten

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