The Trojan War

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The Trojan War The Trojan War took place in approximately the 13th century. The ancient Greeks defeated the City of Troy. The Trojan War started after an incident at the wedding feast of Peleus, the king of Thessaly, and Thetis, a sea goddess. All the gods and goddesses of Mt. Olympus had been invited except Eris, the goddess of discord. Eris was offended and tried to stir up trouble among the guests at the feast. She sent a golden apple inscribed “For the most beautiful.” Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite each claimed the apple as their own. Paris judged the quarrel and awarded the apple to Aphrodite because she had promised him Helen, the most beautiful woman in the world. Helen was already married to Kin Menelaus of Sparta but when visited by Paris, she fled with Paris to Troy. Menelaus organized Greek war against Troy to get Helen back. The Greeks battled for ten years but could not defeat Troy. The fall of Troy occurred when the Greeks built a large hollow horse and placed it outside the walls of Troy. The Trojans took the horse inside and thought the had won the war and the horse was a gift from the Greeks. Later that night, the Greeks stormed from the horse and opened the gates to allow their fellow warriors in and the Greeks conquered the City of Troy. Ancient Greece was the birthplace of Western civilization about 2500 years ago. Greek civilization consisted mainly of small city-states. A city- state consisted of a city or town and the surrounding villages and farmland. The Greek city-states were independent and quarreled often with one-another. These city states established the world's first democratic government. The Greeks believed that certain gods and goddesses watched over them and directed their daily lives. Families would try to please these gods by offering sacrifices, gifts, and ceremonies. Greeks flocked to oracles to consult priests and priestesses to answer questions and fore-tell the future. Greek men enjoyed drinking, talking, and dancing at parties. They also like sports and religious festivals Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle are the most important Greek philosophers. Socrates taught by carefully questioning his listeners to expose the weaknesses of their ideas and arguments. Plato explored such subjects as beauty, justice, and good government. Aristotle summed up the achievements of Greek philosophy and science. His authority on many topics remained unquestioned for more than 100 years Most Ancient Greeks were suspicious of philosophers and their theories. They continued to believe in superstitions and in myths. In 399 BC, an Athens jury sentenced Socrates to death for showing disrespect to the gods.

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