Greece is a peninsula. It is surrounded by water on three sides. The west is the Ionian Sea, south is the Mediterranean Sea, and east is the Aegean Sea.
Three elements of Greek geography had three important impacts on Greek life. First, the mountains were important because they separated Greece into small regions and prevented them for forming large polis. So, each city-state had to function on its own and grew fierce and independent. Another issue from the mountains was it had rocky soil and made it difficult to grow crops. The city-states in the mountain also had a hard time reaching the waterways. Also, the mountains made it difficult for trade to happen.
Another element of geography is that they are surrounded on three sides by water. It made it easy to trade with those they could reach by sea. Greece was influenced by other cultures around the Mediterranean because of contact they had during trade.
The climate was mild and nice and in some places people could grow wheat, barley, olives, and grapes that they could use for trade. They also raised sheep and goats. The climate also made it easy for people to meet outside and talk to each other.
The city-states developed because of geography. For example, city-states in the mountains developed there because the people came together to form its own government and they had a path to trade by being on some type of water. This was important because it was their only way to access others and earn money and get goods they could not grow or make.
Greek would tell poems, they were called epics. Epics were long poems that were told about heroic deeds. Homer wrote epics during the 700 B.C. Homer wrote them about stories of the war between Greece and the city of troy, which is now known as turkey. People are using poems all over the world, mostly to show how they are feeling.
Greeks also used drama, it was a story told by actors, they would speak and act, they would show emotion, and imitate the actors of the characters they represent. All over the world people are now using drama. People are using drama for fun, for emotion, and to speak up all over the world.
Greeks also would use Architecture, they would want people to see reason, moderation, balance, and harmony in their work. Architecture is the art of designing and building structure. People now a days use Architecture to design people's houses.
Another thing that the Greeks would use is Myths. Myths were stories about gods and heroes. We use Myths now a days all over the world too.
The Greeks believed in god and goddesses, they believed that they controlled nature. And according to Greek myths they believed that Zeus owned the sky and could throw lighting bolts. Another thing that they believed was when people died, their spirits went to a world beneath the earth ruled by Hades. Hades was called many different names like Pluto, Dis Pater, Orcus, Plouton.
Each Greeks city-states were ran by citizens. A citizen is a person who is part of a political community that treats all members equally and has certain roles and responsibilities they must do. In some city-states, women and children had citizenship but they had no rights with it. An advantage of being a citizen is you had the right to vote, the right to hold office, the right own property, and had the right to defend themselves in court (all expect for women and children). But in return they had to serve in government. A disadvantage for being a citizen is you have to fight for your polis as citizen soldiers, even if you had a family and did not want to fight. Another disadvantage was the requirement of owning land to be a citizen. Not everyone had money to buy land to become a citizen, so if they had no money, they had no say in the decisions of the city state like a citizen. This hurt greece because you could not be part of a citizenship unless you owned land. The Greeks did this differently than other city-states because if they were a Greek citizen then they were members of a political community. The idea of citizenship, that made them different because the other city-sates did not have any citizenship. Today most places have citizens that make up their population.
In the Peloponnesian War Sparta was a leader of a group of other city states. He was the leader of Peloponnese which had land powers and Corinth which had sea powers. The Peloponnesian War was Athens vs Sparta, Corinth, and Peloponnese.
Athens had a lot of faith in their democratic system. They called it direct democracy. Democracy is when all the citizens get together and decide on government matters. Representative democracy is when citizens elect representatives to voice their wants and needs. Tyranny is when you have a mean and cruel government ruler. An Oligarchy is when a small group of people have control of a country.
If you were part of direct democracy than you have a say in, compared to if you were part of Representative democracy than you would get to voice all of your wants and needs. Now we have Representative democracy because the people of the United States vote for government officials like the President and members of congress.