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of poetry, we find that philosophy began to be cultivated 600 B. Č., and even earlier in Ionia and Lower Italy than in Greece Proper. Statuary and painting were in a flourishing condition. The important colonies of Massilia (Marseilles), in Gaul, and Agrigentum, in Sicily, were founded. Athens was continually extending her commerce, and established important commercial posts in Thrace. In Asia Minor, the Grecian colonies were brought under the dominion of the Lydian Croesus, and soon after under that of Cyrus. Greece itself was threatened with a similar fate by the Persian kings Darius and Xerxes. Then the heroic spirit of the free Greeks showed itself in its greatest brilliancy. Athens and Sparta almost alone withstood the vast armies of the Persian, and the battles of Marathon, Thermopyla and Platea, as well as the sea-fights at Artemisium, Salamis and Mycale, taught the Persians that the Greeks were not to be subdued by them. Athens now exceeded all the other states in splendor and in power. The supremacy which Sparta had hitherto maintained, devolved on this city, whose commander, Cimon, compelled the Persians to acknowledge the independence of Asia Minor. Athens was also the centre of the arts and sciences. The Peloponnesian war now broke out, Sparta being no longer able to endure the overbearing pride of Athens. This war devastated Greece, and enslaved Athens, until Thrasybulus again restored its freedom; and, for a short time, Sparta was compelled, in her turn, to bend before the Theban heroes Epaminondas and Pelopidas. In spite of these disturbances, poets, philosophers, artists and statesmen, continued to arise, commerce flourished, and manners and customs were carried to the highest degree of refinement. But that unhappy period had now arrived, when the Greeks, ceasing to be free, ceased to advance in civilization. A kingdom, formed by conquest, had grown up on the north of Greece, the ruler of which, Philip, united courage with cunning. The dissensions which prevailed among the different states, afforded him an opportunity to execute his ambitious plans, and the battle of Charonea, 338 B. C., gave Macedonia the command of all Greece. In vain did the subjugated states hope to become free after his death. The destruction of Thebes was sufficient to subject all Greece to the young Alexander. This prince, as generalissimo of the Greeks, gained the most splendid victories over the Persians.
An attempt to liberate Greece, occasioned by a false report of his death, was frustrated by Antipater. The Lamian war, after the death of Alexander, was equally unsuccessful. Greece was now little better than a Macedonian province. Luxury had enervated the ancient courage and energy of the nation. At length, most of the states of Southern Greece, Sparta and Etolia excepted, concluded the Achæan league, for the maintenance of their freedom against the Macedonians. A dispute having arisen between this league and Sparta, the latter applied to Macedonia for help, and was victorious. But this friendship was soon fatal, for it involved Greece in the contest between Philip and the Romans, who, at first, indeed, restored freedom to the Grecian states, while they changed Ætolia, and soon after Macedonia, into Roman provinces; but they afterwards began to excite dissensions in the Achæan league, interfered in the quarrels of the Greeks, and finally compelled them to take up arms to maintain their freedom. So unequal a contest could not long remain undecided; the capture of Corinth, 146 B. C., placed the Greeks in the power of the Romans. During the whole period which elapsed between the battle of Chæronea and the destruction of Corinth by the Romans, the arts and sciences flourished among the Greeks; indeed, the golden age of the arts was in the time of Alexander. The Grecian colonies were yet in a more flourishing condition than the mother country; especially Alexandria, in Egypt, became the seat of learning. As they, also, in process of time, fell under the dominion of the Romans, they became, like their mother country, the instructers of their conquerors. In the time of Augustus, the Greeks lost even the shadow of their former freedom, and ceased to be an independent people, although their language, manners, customs, learning, arts and taste spread over the whole Roman empire. The character of the nation was now sunk so low, that the Romans esteemed a Greek as the most worthless of creatures. Asiatic luxury had wholly corrupted them; their ancient love of freedom and independence was extinguished; and a mean servility was substituted in its place. At the beginning of the fourth century, the nation scarcely showed a trace of the noble characteristics of their fathers. The barbarians soon after began their ruinous incursions into Greece.-Besides the well known works on the history of Greece,
by Mitford, Gillies, Barthélemy (Anacharsis), &c., we would mention Clinton's Fasti Hellenici (Oxford, 1824), an important work on the political and literary chronology of Greece, from the 55th to the 124th Olympiad; and Wachsmuth's Hellenische Alterthumskunde (1 vol., Halle, 1826); also Heeren's Politics of Ancient Greece (translated, Boston, 1824).-The principal traits in the character of the ancient Greeks, were simplicity and grandeur. The Greek was his own instruct er, and if he learned any thing from others, he did it with freedom and independence. Nature was his great model, and in his native land, she displayed herself in all her charms. The uncivilized Greek was manly and proud, active and enterprising, violent both in his hate and in his love. He esteemed and exercised hospitality towards strangers and countrymen. These features of the Grecian character had an important influence on the religion, politics, manners and phiJosophy of the nation. The gods of Greece were not, like those of Asia, surrounded by a holy obscurity; they were human in their faults and virtues, but were placed far above mortals. They kept up an intercourse with men; good and evil came from their hands; all physical and moral endowments were their gift. The moral system of the earliest Greeks taught them to honor the gods by an exact observance of customs; to hold the rights of hospitality sacred, and even to spare murderers, if they fled to the sanctuaries of the gods for refuge. Cunning and revenge were allowed to be practised against enemies. No law enforced continence. The power of the father, of the husband or the brother, alone guarded the honor of the female sex, who therefore lived in continual dependence. The loss of virtue was severely punished, but the seducer brought his gifts and offerings to the gods, as if his conduct had been guiltless. The security of domestic life rested entirely on the master of the family. From these characteristic traits of the earliest Greeks, originated, in the sequel, the peculiarities of their religious notions, their love of freedom and action, their taste for the beautiful and the grand, and the simplicity of their manners. The religion of the Greeks was not so much mingled with superstition as that of the Romans; thus, for example, they were unacquainted with the practice of augury. The Greek was inclined to festivity, even in religion, and served the gods less in spirit than in out
ward ceremonies. His religion had little influence on his morals, his belief, and the government of his thoughts. All it required was a belief in the gods, and in a future existence; a freedom from gross crimes, and an observance of prescribed rites. The simplicity of their manners, and some obscure notions of a supreme God, who hated and punished evil, loved and rewarded good, served, at first, to maintain good morals and piety among them. These notions were afterwards exalted and systematized by poetry and philosophy, and the improvement spread from the cultivated classes through the great mass of the people. In the most enlightened period of Greece, clearer ideas of the unity of the deity, of his omniscience, his omnipresence, his holiness, his goodness, his justice, and of the necessity of worshipping him by virtue and purity of heart, prevailed. The moral system of some individuals among the Greeks was equally pure. The precepts of morality were delivered at first in sententious maxims; for example, the sayings of the seven wise men. Afterwards, Socrates and his disciples arose, and promulgated their pure doctrines. The love of freedom among the Greeks sprang from their good fortune, in having lived so long without oppression or fear of other nations, and from their natural vivacity of spirit. It was this which made small armies invincible, and which caused Lycurgus, Solon and Timoleon to refuse crowns. Their freedom was the work of nature, and the consequence of their original patriarchal mode of life. The first kings were considered as fathers of families, to whom obedience was willingly paid, in return for protection and favors. Important affairs were decided by the assemblies of the people. Each man was master in his own house, and in early times no taxes were paid. But as the kings strove continually to extend their powers, they were ultimately compelled to resign their dignities, and free states arose, with forms of government inclining more or less to aristocracy or democracy, or composed of a union of the two; the citizens were attached to a government which was administered under the direction of wise laws, and not of arbitrary power. It was this noble love for a free country, which prompted Leonidas to say to the king of Persia, that he would rather die than hold a
despotic sway over Greece. It was this which inspired Solon, Themistocles, Demosthenes and Phocion, when, in spite of the ingratitude of their countrymen, they
chose to serve the state and the laws, rather than their own interests. The cultivation of their fruitful country, which, by the industry of the inhabitants, afforded nourishment to several millions, and the wealth of their colonies, prove the activity of the Greeks. Commerce, navigation and manufactures flourished on all sides; knowledge of every sort was accumulated; the spirit of invention was busily at work; the Greeks learned to estimate the pleasures of society, but they also learned to love luxury. From these sources of activity sprang also a love of great actions and great enterprises, so many instances of which are furnished by Grecian history. Another striking trait of the Grecian character, was a love of the beautiful, both physical and intellectual. This sense of the beautiful, awakened and developed by nature, created for itself an ideal of beauty, which served them, and has been transmitted to us, as a criterion for every work of art. A noble simplicity pervades every thing which comes from them. It is this which has made the Greeks the instructers of all ages and nations.
Greek Language and Writing. The language, which we call Greek, was not the primitive language of Greece, for Greece was originally inhabited by the Pelasgi. Their language was already extinct in the time of Herodotus, who asserts that it was different from the Hellenic, and adds, that it is probable that the Hellenes have retained their original language (I. 57). But on the question whence it originated, there is a diversity of opinion; for some derive it from the Persian, others from the Scythian-two opinions, which are not, perhaps, incompatible with each other. Out of Greece, it was spoken in a great part of Asia Minor, of the south of Italy and Sicily, and in other regions which were settled by Grecian colonies. From the great number of Hellenic tribes of the same race, it was to be expected that there would be different dialects, the knowledge of which is the more necessary for becoming acquainted with the Greek language, since the writers of this nation have transmitted the peculiarities of the different dialects in the use of single letters, words, forms, terminations and expressions, and that not merely to characterize more particularly an individual represented as speaking, but even when they speak in their own person. It is customary to distinguish three leading dialects, according to the three leading branches of the Greeks, the Æolic, the Doric, and the Ionic, to which
was afterwards added the mixed Attic dialect; besides these, there are several secondary dialects. The four leading dialects may be reduced to two, the Hellenic-Doric and the Ionic-Attic. The former was the oldest; in fact, Doric was generally used to signify what was ancient. The oldest Doric style is displayed in the Æolic dialect, from which the Latin language is derived. The Doric was hard and harsh; the Ionic was the softest. The Æolic was spoken on the north of the Isthmus (excepting in Megara, Attica and Doris), in the Eolian colonies of Asia Minor, and on some of the northern islands of the Ægean sea. The Doric was spoken in the Peloponnesus, in the Doric Tetrapolis, in the Doric colonies of Asia Minor, of Lower Italy (Tarentum), of Sicily (Syracuse, Agrigentum), and most purely by the Messenians; the Ionic in the Ionian colonies of Asia Minor, and on the islands of the Archipelago; and the Attic in Attica. In each of these dialects, there are celebrated authors. To the Ionic dialect belong, in' part, the works of the oldest poets, Homer, Hesiod, Theognis, etc.; it is found pure in some prose writers, especially Herodotus and Hippocrates; the poems of Pindar, Theocritus, Bion and Moschus. Little Doric prose remains, and that is mostly on mathematical or philosophical subjects. In Æolic, we have fragments of Alcæus and Sappho. After Athens had obtained the supremacy of Greece, and rendered itself the centre of all literary cultivation, the masterpieces of Eschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Thucydides, Xenophon, Plato, Isocrates, Demosthenes, etc., made the Attic the common dialect of literature. Grammarians afterwards distinguished the genuine Attic, as it exists in those masters, from the Attic of common life, calling the latter the common Greek or Hellenic dialect, and even the later Attic writers, posterior to the golden age of the literature, Hellenes or common Greeks. this latter class are Aristotle, Theophrastus, Apollodorus, Polybius, Plutarch and others, many of whom, however, wrote genuine Attic, as Lucian, Ælian and Arrian. Except the dramatists, the poets by no means confined themselves to the Attic; the dramatists themselves assumed the Doric, to a certain degree, in their choruses, for the sake of giving them additional solemnity, because these belonged to the oldest liturgy of the Greeks; and the other poets retained the Homeric style. It cannot be denied, that the Greeks were
much better acquainted with their different dialects than some moderns, the Germans, for instance, are with theirs. This may, perhaps, have been, in a great degree, the effect of the universal popularity of Homer, the use of a religious ritual, and the great mutual intercourse of the nation. But, probably, the dialects were not, in the earliest times, so distinct from each other as they afterwards became; and on this hypothesis we must explain the peculiarities of the style of Homer and Hesiod. "In Homer and Hesiod," says Mathia, "forms and expressions occur, which grammarians pronounce Æolic, Doric, Attic, or the peculiarities of a local dialect. But they could hardly have been such at the time of these poets, who would have as little allowed themselves to employ such a mixture, as a German poet would permit himself to mingle together Lower Saxon and High German provincialisms. The language of Homer seems rather to have been the language of the Ionians of that time. Of the forms common in Homer, all did not remain in the Ionic dialect, but some subsisted in the Æolic-Doric only, others merely in the Attic. The grammarians call that Attic, Æolic, Doric, etc., in Homer, which was so at their time." The period when these changes took place in the leading dialects cannot be determined. It follows from all this, that, to have a thorough knowledge of the Greek language, we must follow out, historically, the course of its formation, taking no partial grammar as our foundation, but extending our view over all the varied forms of the dialects-a labor which this language, so rich in classic models of every kind, and therefore so perfect, so flexible, so expressive, so sweet in its sound, so harmonious in its movement, and so philosophical in its grammatical forms and whole structure, merits, and richly rewards. At what time this language first began to be expressed in writing, has long been a subject of doubt. According to the general opinion, Cadmus, the Phonician, introduced the alphabet into Greece. His alphabet consisted of but 16 letters; four (ex) are said to have been invented by Palamedes, in the Trojan war, and four more (Z н я) by Simonides of Ceos. That the eight letters mentioned, are more modern than the others, is certain, partly from historical accounts, partly from the most ancient inscriptions. As the Ionians first adopted these letters, and the Athenians received them from them, the alphabet with 24 letters is called
the Ionic. The figures of the oldest Phoenician and Greek letters differ very much from the modern Hebrew and Greek letters. There have not been wanting persons, however, who assert that the art of writing was practised among the Pelasgi before the time of Cadmus. This opinion, not unknown to the ancients, but corroborated by no single author of authority, has not failed to meet with advocates in modern times. Others, on the contrary, have appeared, who place the origin of the art of writing in Greece much later. The first who attracted attention to this point, was Wood, in his Essay on the original Genius of Homer. It is, at all events, of great importance, for forming a proper judgment of Homer, and deciding respecting Ante-Homeric poetry and literature, to ascertain whether the art of writing was or was not known in the time of Homer. Wood's opinion is, that we may place the time when the use of the alphabet became common in Greece, and the beginning of prose writing, in about the same period, 554 before Christ, and about as long after Homer. In Homer's time, all knowledge, religion and laws were preserved by memory alone, and for that reason were put in verse, till prose was introduced with the art of writing. The argument drawn from several ancient inscriptions on temples, Wolf has deprived of all its force: in his Prolegomena to Homer, he has converted the question with more precision into two :-). When did the Greeks become acquainted with the art of writing? 2. When was it common among them? In solving the latter question, it must be ascertained when convenient materials for writing became common, and in what century the writing of books was introduced among the Greeks. Wolf proves not only that Homer committed to writing nothing which he sung, the skins of animals not having been used for writing till after him, nor Egyptian papyrus till the time of Psammeticus, but that his verses were never committed to writing till the middle of the sixth century before Christ. It remains to remark, that the Greeks originally wrote their lines from right to left, then boustrophedon (see Boustrophedon), and finally from left to right.
Greek Literature. The origin of Greek literature, that is, of the intellectual cultivation of the Greeks by written works, is lost in an almost impenetrable obscurity. Though there existed in Greece, in earlier times, no actual literature, there was by no means a want of what we may, not
improperly, call literary cultivation, if we free ourselves from the prejudice, that the palladium of humanity consists solely in written alphabetical characters. The first period of Grecian cultivation, which extends to the invasion of the Peloponnesus by the Heraclidæ and Dorians, and the great changes produced by it, consequently to 80 years after the Trojan war, and which we may designate by the name of the Ante-Homeric period, was indeed utterly destitute of literature; but it may be questioned whether it was also destitute of all that culture, which we are accustomed to call literary. The fables which are told of the intellectual achievements of this period, have a certain basis of truth. Among the promoters of literary cultivation, in this time, we must distinguish three classes-1. Those of whom we have no writings, but who are mentioned as inventors of arts, poets and sages: Amphion, Demodocus, Melampus, Olen, Phemius and Prometheus. 2. Those to whom are falsely attributed works no longer extant: Abaris, Aristeas, Chiron, Epimenides, Eumolpus, Corinnus, Linus and Palamedes. 3. Those to whom writings yet extant, which, however, were productions of later times, are attributed: Dares, Dictys, Horapollo, Musæus, Orpheus, and the authors of the Sibylline oracles. This is not the place to inquire whether any and how much of these writings is genuine. It is enough, that the idea of such a forgery proves the existence of earlier productions. And how could the next period have been what it was, without previous preparation? If we may thus infer what must have been, in order that the succeeding period should be what it was, we learn, also, from the various traditions of the Ante-Homeric period, that there existed in it institutions which, through the means of religion, poetry, oracles and mysteries, had no small influence on the civilization of the nation and the promotion of culture; for the most part, indeed, in Oriental forms, and perhaps of Oriental origin; and that these institutions, generally of a priestly character, obtained principally in the northern parts of Greece, Thrace and Macedonia. We must here remark, that intellectual cultivation did not prosper at once in Greece, nor display itself simultaneously among all the tribes; that the Greeks became Greeks only in the process of time, and some tribes made more rapid progress than others. About 80 years after the Trojan war, new commotions and a new migration began within the borders of Greece.
A portion of the inhabitants emigrated from the mother country to the islands and to Asia Minor. This change was in the highest degree favorable to Grecian genius; for the new settlements, abounding in harbors, and destined by nature for commerce and industry, afforded them not only a more tranquil life, but also a wider field for refinement, and gave rise to new modes of life. The ancients ascribed to the colonies in Ionia and Asia Minor the character of luxury and voluptuousness. The blue sea, the pure sky, the balmy air, the beautiful prospects, the finest fruits and most delicious vegetables in abundance, all the requisites of luxury, here united to nourish a soft sensuality. Poetry and philosophy, painting and statuary, here attained their highest perfection; but great and heroic deeds were oftener celebrated than performed. Near the scene of the first grand national enterprise of the Greeks the Trojan war-it was not strange that the interest it excited should be lively, and that it should take a powerful hold of the imagination. Poetry thus found a subject, in the treatment of which it necessarily assumed a character entirely distinct from that of the former period. Among all nations, heroic poetry has flourished with the spirit of heroism. The heroes were here followed by the bards, and thus the epopee was formed. We therefore call this second period the epic age of the Greeks. The minstrel (dodos) now appears separated from the priest, but highly honored, particularly because the memory of the heroes lived in his verse; and poetry was the guardian of all the knowledge of preceding times, so long as traditions were not committed to writing. From its very nature, the epopee must be historical, in an enlarged sense. Under such circumstances, it is not strange that regular schools for poets were established; for the imagination of the first poet fired the imagination of others, and it was then, perhaps, believed that poetry must be learned like other arts-a belief to which the schools for priests contributed not a little, on which the schools for minstrels were probably modelled. But they were minstrels in the strictest sense, for their traditions were sung, and the poet accompanied his verses on a stringed instrument. On every important occasion, minstrels were present, who were regarded as standing under the immediate influence of the gods, especially of the muses, who were acquainted with the present, the past and the future. The minstrel, with the seer, thus stood at the head of men. But,