Wealth of evidence

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By Teresa Saunderseducational journalist and children’s writer

Ancient Greek myths and tales of gods and goddesses help to tell us how they made sense of the world

The Ancient Greeks created one of the most influential civilisations in the Ancient World and, fortunately for us, left behind a great deal of evidence to show us how they lived and what they believed in. Some of the most powerful evidence comes from the Greek myths. These tales of gods and goddesses, heroes and heroines, mortals and monsters were central to daily life in Ancient Greece. That they still inspire writers, poets, artists and musicians is a tribute to their enduring popularity and relevance.

Exploring the evidence:

  • Storytelling: The myths were sacred to the Ancient Greeks. As the Greek empire spread, so did the stories, which were adapted to different countries and cultures.
  • Writers: Many stories were written down, often many years after the events. The most famous writer, Homer, wrote about the Trojan Wars in his poem, the Illiad.
  • Language: Just as the myths travelled – and were absorbed by other cultures – so was the Greek language. Many of the words we use today originate from the Greek language (see page 16).
  • Drawings/sculptures: Many detailed drawings of characters and events from the myths, statues of gods, goddesses and heroes and friezes depicting battles and stories, have survived.
  • Buildings/architecture/artefacts: Today we can see remains of temples, tombs, monuments, stadia, fortifications and artefacts such as pottery, weapons and ornaments.

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Reviews

  1. nwhitwell
    on 17 January 2010

    myths ideas

    some good activity ideas

    3out of 5

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