Religion In Ancient Greek Religion

1948 Words8 Pages
Ancient Greek Religion There are many topics to be explored in Ancient Greek mythology. This unique polytheistic religion was based upon myth about anthropomorphic gods and goddesses. It impacted every facet of Grecian life from law and ritual to culture and art. The individual as well as society both influenced the characteristics of the religion and were influenced by the religion itself.
The Cambridge Illustrated History of Ancient Greece explains a variety of ways in which the Greeks were influenced by their religion. The Greeks expressed their respect for their gods through sacred acts, primarily festivals and rituals. The festivals were held to honor certain deities such as the Olympic Games, an event held for athletes meant to honor
…show more content…
Greek palaces and temples, consisting of massive columns, were built for the gods or other religious purposes. The temples found at the center of the polis, the acropolis, were made as earthen dwellings for the gods, a place for storage of sacred objects and offerings, and also served out tasks for the polis such as keeping records. Temples, along with other sacred places were sometimes only open to certain peoples or cults, and people who were not ritually purified or had “religious pollution” were not allowed to enter sacred places (Adkins & Adkins 338). The fact that the religion centers are in the middle of the cities symbolizes how Greek religion was central to Grecian life, it was one of the most important things to them. The temples also represent the architectural and cultural achievements of the Greeks. The magnificent style of these temples has influenced not only Greece but the whole world as Grecian columns have been a staple in architecture since there creation; this is even evident in the United States with buildings such as the United States Capitol, built hundreds of years after the establishment of Ancient Grecian architecture. Along with architecture, Greek art, most notably pottery and sculpture, was also influenced by religion. Greek pottery, depicting mythological and heroic scenes, and statues, portraying the human form often made in the image of gods,…show more content…
Theogony of Hesiod was written by one of the earliest Greek poets, Hesiod between 750 and 650 BCE. Around this time we see the rise of the polis along with its prosperity, and the rise of centers of political, religious, philosophical, and artistic development. Hesiod says all things in the universe arose from Chaos, the nothingness from which the first objects of existence appeared. Chaos’s children created the Titans, the three Cyclopes, the three Hecatonchires (hundred-handed giants,) and various deities, nymphs, and monsters. From the Titans came the first Olympians, who fought for power over the world and created the other gods and goddesses of the Greek
Open Document