By Sanford Holst

we have a tendency to take democracy, philosophy, theatre and the gorgeous structures of Athens with no consideration, as though they have been continuously going to occur. yet in truth, 5 made up our minds humans had an overpowering influence on making these issues take place. And the wealthy info in their lives provide us a deep and pleasant look at how the extraordinary Golden Age of Athens got here into being.
 
Socrates, after all, used to be a kind of humans. yet how did he upward thrust from operating as a stonemason to being one of many world's maximum philosophers? His lifestyles provides us a glance additional within Athenian society in these days. The early tyrant Peisistratos created prestigious prizes for theatre performs, motivating Aeschylus, Euripides and others to commit themselves to generating such works. A extra well-known chief of Athens was once Pericles, who commissioned the construction of the Parthenon and different nice works. yet Pericles was once additionally the appropriate guy on the correct time to maintain the suffering Athenian democracy whilst it could possibly have perished. The often-overlooked Aspasia used to be an influential lady who had a considerable effect on Pericles in addition to Socrates, and considerably affected their paintings. The robust Athenian basic Alcibiades was once so dominant in conflict that Sparta couldn't win the Peloponnesian struggle till demagogues in Athens foolishly drove their normal away.
 
Many humans contributed to the lifetime of Athens. yet with no those 5 humans, the city's top days may have amounted to not anything greater than these of Thebes or Corinth -- extraordinary, yet without lasting strains. 5 awesome humans took what they discovered in Athens and made it nice. They stood out between their friends, and gave us a Golden Age.

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Ancient Athens: Five Intriguing Lives: Socrates, Pericles, Aspasia, Peisistratos & Alcibiades by Sanford Holst


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