No other era has captured our lives today as the Greeks and Romans did. From Homer and his epic poetry to Julius Caesar of the Gallic War, people today relate to this era as an internal element. Though we read about the Greeks and the Romans, there are a lot of similarities and differences between them both. The Greeks retain the heart of human situations in matters of love or war and government or social behavior. Unlike the Greeks, the Roman civilization deals with their conquest and expansion of their existence.
The civilization of ancient Greece, from about the eighth century to the first century B.C., and the civilization of ancient Rome, lasting from about the first century B.C. to the fifth century A.D., are often referred to as Greco-Roman or as classical. The two cultures are similar in ways of thinking and creating that are different from other ancient cultures. Although they don t always show their similarities, like, they both rule by law and discussion through philosophy, many of their points contrast. Greek literature is classic concepts and motifs. The Greeks were the first to be interested in, and indeed glorify, human beings. They were the first to express themselves in ways that can be designated as characteristically Western. The Greeks emphasize on the uniqueness of the development of the Western humanities. Greek literature maintains the heart of human situations, human capability, and a weakness in their characteristics of which starts with the first writer of Western literature, Homer. Although he did not write, Homer belonged to an oral tradition, as a singer of tales. Homer s original purpose of the epic poetry was to sing the famous deeds of men: to teach people in a pleasurable way about the great heroes of their culture. Throughout the Achainan culture, which the Greeks were called, they were two great Homeric epics such as the Iliad and the Odyssey, which Homer emphasizes on humanistic values, honor, truth, compassion, loyalty, devotion to family and gods that gives his works religious and ethical significance.
On the other aspects of cultures, the Romans looked to Greek models for their literature. The Romans had been too busy organizing, building, and conquering to write until they discovered Greek literature. They managed with hand-me-downs from the Greeks and other ancient cultures for most of its existence. Rome s literature starts with understanding a careful reading on their plays, letters, speeches, poems, epigrams, laws, histories, and commentaries. These reading left no doubt but to believe Rome nurtured natural inclinations toward conquest and expansion. Through their conquest and expansion, Rome s literary civilization drew methods, which better human life, made people think about the internal elements of destruction that bothered them, and search for better things in life through themselves in their tragedies and comedies.
During the classical era, art and architecture was of great importance to the Greeks and the Romans just like their literature was. The Greeks significant building is called the Acropolis that has a great importance to the Achain culture, especially the Parthenon that was located on the highest point of the Acropolis. Greek architecture and art of their sculptures provides comparisons of Egypt and Greece. The Greeks learned techniques just as they learned from the formal, frontal, and almost ideal nature of Egyptian sculptures and styles. They figured out the origins of their architecture, which begins with the noas, pronoas, cella, the pediment, and the colonnade of their buildings. Then from the classical Greeks orders known as the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian order, the capital and the lintels they are a great significance to the Acropolis history. Though the Greeks had style, they had desires to complete naturalism and the desire to make figures of ideal types of sculptures that were classical forms. Their figures were personalized portraits that were both human and divine. As they adopted forms and techniques from the Greeks they also learned from other tribes and cultures as well. The Roman system of building came from the Etruscans. Like the Greeks, the Romans had walls, post, lintels, and the Romans introduced the Arch, which is called a centering. They were the first to develop city planning on an extensive basis, and their methods of planning are in themselves a significant guide to their values. Two of the Romans greatest significant buildings are the Colesseum and the Pantheon. The Colesseum is known as the great amphitheaters in Rome, and the Pantheon, a temple to all the planetary deities.
However, they are a lot of similarities in both the Greek and the Romans, their religious genius aren t very similar. The Greeks did not have a religious genius. In early Hindu scriptures or the Bible, the stories of the gods on Mount Olympus have given rise to no enduring religion for the Greeks. It s not that they don t believe in God or anything, but it s difficult for them to believe in faith as humans do. The Greek gods are known to be wish fulfillment; powerful, immortal, beautiful, and believed to live at ease. Like the Bible tells us on how God created Heaven and Earth, the Greeks believed that the universe was created from chaos, and the first beings were a male and female divinity. Greek religion was practiced throughout the heroic or Mycenaean age but wasn t explained until the archaic period. Religious practices consisted of the sacrifice of animals and the pouring of libation to the gods. Despite the Greeks and their beliefs, Rome s religious beliefs were based on Christianity. Though Christianity was there beliefs, Rome was a society founded on the institution of slavery.
The contrast between the Greeks and Romans beliefs in their religion, there governmental policies also differs. The kind of government that the Greeks came about is a city-state, which in Athens is called a democracy. Most people had freedom and all policy decisions and the Assembly of the People, which was composed of male citizens, made laws. In that society, women didn t have a place, they were not citizens, not did they have rights in law. Although they had a democratic constitution, Athens, like all Greek city-states had slaveholding. For the most part Athenian slavery was not oppressive; they were more or less like the poor people. On the other hand, the Romans governmental system was based on an aristocratic government or oligarchy. Unlike the Greeks, the Romans had pricepts. The Romans had three governmental systems from the primitive monarchy, the Republic, and a period of self-purgation. After Julius Caesar, Rome took on a new and resilient life as an Empire. Octavian took over and called it Augustus. A this time in the Roman Republic became very organized, there was no more slavery and women had some rights. They concentrated on armies and control over most of the states finance.
In conclusion, the Greeks were strong in self-awareness. They were practical and perceptive; their myths challenged the mind, and enlighten people today with pre-historic souls of their time. Their culture gives passion to human nature and gives people today a sense of human pride. However, the Romans were very creative, though they learned alot of things from the Greeks. They believed in better things in life and strive for success. The Romans brought people today a better understanding of ourselves. Although Rome survived, conquered, grew, shrank, and almost fell apart, the Romans were very energetic people who believed things can work if people search through their souls, the internal element to find what they want and who they really are.