No ancient society has exerted greater influence on the development of Western culture than the ancient Greeks. Over 2000 years ago these people gave birth to the institution of democracy, to scientific investigation and philosophical dialogue, to poetry, both epic and personal, to historical narrative, and to comic and tragic theater. Their intensely creative spark also manifested itself in the arts: in architecture with the creation of temples for the gods, theaters for assembly and entertainment, and tombs for the dead, in sculpture that depicted the divine ideal and human frailty, and painting that illustrated the simple patterns of daily life, the poignancy of death, and the fickleness of the gods.More
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