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The majestic and mysterious Parthenon in Athens, Greece.

The Parthenon: An Epic Monument Or a Mystery in Measurements?

The Parthenon, proudly standing on the Athenian Acropolis , is considered by many historians and archaeologists alike as the undisputed symbol of Athenian democracy and the cradle of Western...
What Went Wrong? The Real Story of the Battle of Thermopylae

What Went Wrong? The Real Story of the Battle of Thermopylae

In 480 BC, an enormous Persian army under the chief command of Emperor Xerxes (son of Darius the Great) campaigned against Thessaly in central Greece. Mainly they fought against the southern mostly...
Helen of Troy

Helen of Troy, The Beauty Who Sparked the Trojan War

In Greek mythology, Helen of Troy is known as the woman whose beauty sparked the Trojan War. But Helen’s character is more complex than it seems. When considering the many Greek and Roman myths that...
Nineteenth-century painting depicting the Athenian politician Pericles delivering his famous funeral oration in front of the Assembly

The Ins and Outs and 'Idiots' of Greek Democracy

Greece, or more specifically the city state of Athens , is considered to be the birthplace of democracy. Athenian democracy is well-documented and served as a model for the democracies of other Greek...
Penteli cave, 2009.

The Penteli Cave Enigma – A Place of Unexplained Phenomena Since Ancient Times

Mount Pentelicus, a mountain near Athens, Greece, has been an important area for thousands of years. It is the location of the ancient quarry from which marble was cut to build the Parthenon and...
‘The Fall of the Titans’ (1588-1590) by Cornelis van Haarlem.

Homosexuality in Ancient Greece - One Big Lie?

You may have heard that homosexuality was celebrated in ancient Greece more than any other place and time. Some scholars have even called ancient Athens a gay paradise, where same-sex romance...
Theseus and the Minotaur.

Theseus: The Greek Hero That Slayed the Minotaur

Theseus was a hero in Greek mythology and a legendary king of Athens. The most famous myth involving Theseus is the one in which he slayed the dreaded Minotaur. Many stories about Theseus say he not...
A painting depicting a debate between Socrates and Aspasia, by Nicolas André Monsiaux, circa 1800.

Elite Companions, Flute Girls and Child Slaves: Sex Work in Ancient Athens

Marguerite Johnson / The Conversation In this sexual histories series, authors explore changing sexual mores from antiquity to today. When the Athenian politician Pericles delivered his famous...
Ancient Greek theater (Segesta).

Ancient Greek Theater and the Monumental Amphitheaters in Honor of Dionysus

To the Ancient Greeks, theater was a form of entertainment taken very seriously. People would come from all across the Greek world to attend the popular theaters held in open air amphitheaters. In...
Detail of a Fresco from the North wall of the Tomb of the Diver in Paestum, Italy depicting Pederastic couples at a symposium.

Assassins in Ancient Athens: The Tyrannicides, Harmodius and Aristogeiton

Harmodius and Aristogeiton: the citizens of Athens knew the names of these lovers all too well in the 6th century BC. But it isn’t their love story that captured attention. These two men are...
Mosaic, shown Gargoyles in form of Theatrical masks of Tragedy and Comedy. Roman artwork, 2nd century AD.

Masks, Sex, Laughter, and Tears: The Exciting Evolution of Ancient Greek Theater

The city of theater was Athens. Athens birthed drama, bred drama, and ultimately was responsible for cultivating it into the premiere art of the Classical world—at least according to Greek...
‘Die Amazonenschlacht’ by Anselm Feuerbach, 1873.

Who was the Powerful Amazon Queen Orithyia and What Drove Her to Launch a Fated Attack on Athens?

Orithyia was one of those dangerous women whose beauty was so often described by terrified and excited men that it became legendary. For centuries, the Amazons were believed to be nothing more than a...
Astrology Tile Mosaic, Ringling's Mansion (Courtyard)

The 4,000 Year History of Horoscopes: How Astrology Has Been Shaped Throughout the the Millennia

Every time ancient Greece is mentioned, most people automatically think of democracy, the Olympic Games, mythology, philosophy, technology and various sciences such as mathematics and astronomy. It...
Photo by Leo Von Klenze. A romantic idealized reconstruction of the Acropolis of Athens.

Cleisthenes, Father of Democracy, Invented a Form of Government that Has Endured for Over 2,500 Years

Ancient Athens is best remembered for giving birth to the first democracy in history, a course of action that took many years and several leaders to develop. One of the most prominent figures of that...
How Was This 7,000-Year-Old Mysterious Artifact Carved from Granite Without Metal Tools?

How Was This 7,000-Year-Old Mysterious Artifact Carved from Granite Without Metal Tools?

A strange bird-like statuette from around 5,000 BC has puzzled Greek archaeologists, who can’t explain what it depicts or what its origin is. The "7,000-year-old enigma," as they have labeled it, is...
Socrates: The Father of Western Philosophy

Socrates: The Father of Western Philosophy

Socrates, the most famous philosopher of all time, had one of the most subtle and complicated minds we have on record. His death was a dark moment in Athenian and human history, but his thinking and...

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