Chapter 8 Section 1
Myth: traditional stories about gods and
Oracle: sacred shrine where a priest of priestess
spoke for a god or goddess
Epic: long poems about heroic deeds
Fable: a short tale that teaches a lesson
Drama: a story told by actors who pretend to be
characters in the story
Tragedy: a drama where a person struggles to
overcome difficulties but fails
Comedy: a drama where the story ends happily
◦ Mount Olympus
Answer the following questions with your
◦ Why do you think that the Greeks had so
many gods and goddesses?
◦ What do you know about Greek gods and
Turn to Page 377 – Understanding Charts
◦ Review the Chart on Greek Gods and Goddesses
Which god is the central point of the chart?
How do the gods and goddesses shown in the chart
relate to Zeus?
They are either the children or siblings of Zeus
How can you tell who are the siblings and who are the
They key indicates that siblings are connected by green lines
and children by red lines
Who was the twin sister of Apollo?
Artemis is the twin sister of Apollo.
How were Ares and Zeus related?
Ares was Zeus’s son.
Greek mythology expressed the Greek’s
◦ Gods and goddesses affected:
Forces of nature
Zeus: ruled sky, threw lightning bolts
Demeter: made crops grow
Poseidon: caused earthquakes
Most impressive Greek buildings were temples
12 most important lived on Mount
◦ Zeus: chief god
◦ Athena: wisdom and crafts
◦ Apollo: sun and poetry
◦ Ares: war
◦ Aphrodite: love
◦ Poseidon: seas and earthquakes
Gods were not all-powerful
◦ Human characteristics
Greeks sought gods’ favor
◦ Followed many rituals
◦ Prayed to their gods
◦ Gave them gifts
◦ Held festivals to honor gods
Hoped for good fortune by doing these things
Believed in afterlife:
◦ Underworld ruled by Hades
Why did the Greeks have rituals and
festivals for their gods and goddesses?
◦ They hoped the gods would grant good
fortune to them.
What did the Greek gods and goddesses
◦ The Greek gods and goddesses controlled:
Greeks believed in fate/destiny
◦ Certain events were going to happen, no matter
Greeks believed in prophecy
◦ Predictions about the future
Gods gave prophecies to warn about future; time to
To find out about future, Greeks visited an
◦ Most famous – Temple of Apollo at Delphi
Priest or priestess spoke for god or goddess
Priest or priestess in oracle gave answers in riddles
Earliest Greeks stories – epics
◦ Long poems about heroic deeds
◦ Homer wrote first epics during 700s B.C.
Iliad – War between Greeks and Troy; war was over a woman
Greeks won – wooden horse
Journey of Odysseus home after Trojan War
Took him 10 years
Both were looked at as more than poems
Stories promoted courage and honor
Stories taught loyalty between friends
Stories valued the relationship between husband and wife
550 B.C., Greek Slave Aesop wrote now
Fable: short tale that teaches a lesson
◦ Animals talk and act like people
◦ Expose human flaws as well as strengths
◦ Ends with a moral or message
◦ Aesop's Fables
About 200 years, Aesop’s fables were part
of Greek oral tradition
What two epic poems were written by
◦ Homer wrote the Iliad and the Odyssey.
What are the characteristics of a fable?
◦ A fable is:
A short tale/story
Teaches a lesson
Often involves funny stories about animals that
◦ Story told by actors who pretend to be
characters in the story
Imitate the actions of the character
◦ Modern examples:
Greek plays were performed in outdoor theaters
Greeks had two types of dramas:
A person struggles to overcome difficulties but fails
Struggle against their fate
Person’s character flaws cause them to fail
Greek stories dealt with big questions:
◦ What is the nature of good and evil?
◦ What rights should people have?
◦ What role do gods play in our lives?
First plays had only one actor
◦ 2 characters: Conflict
◦ Stage decorations
◦ Oresteia – group of 3 plays:
what happens when king of
Mycenae returned from
◦ Used 3 actors
◦ Painted scenes
◦ Oedipus Rex
“Is it better to follow orders
or to do what is right?”
◦ Beyond heroes and gods
◦ Real-life situations
◦ Questioned traditional
◦ Made fun of politicians and
◦ Encouraged the audience to
think and laugh
◦ Included jokes like today’s
popular television shows
What two types of drama did the Greeks
◦ The Greeks created tragedies and comedies.
Actors speak and show emotion in what?
◦ In a drama, actors speak and show emotion.
What big questions did Greek stories deal
◦ Greek stories dealt with big questions, such as
the nature of good and evil
the rights of people
the role of the gods in their lives.
Greek Artists believed in certain ideas
◦ Art was to show those ideas
◦ Murals: none have survived
◦ Paintings on pottery
Red or black
Large vases have scenes from myths
Small drinking cups have scenes from everyday life
Architecture: art of designing and building
Most important: temple for a god or goddess
◦ Best known example: Parthenon
Large columns supported many Greek buildings
◦ First columns were made of wood
◦ 500 B.C., marble
Built in sections, then stacked on top of each other
◦ What buildings in America have columns?
Many temples were decorated with sculptures
◦ Favorite subject: Human body
◦ Tried to show ideal version of perfection and beauty
Did not include flaws of person
What was the most important type of
building in Greece?
◦ The most important type of building in
Greece was a temple dedicated to a god or
What were the ideas that Greek artists
hoped would inspire people?
◦ Reason, moderation, balance, and harmony
were ideas that Greek artists hoped would
List the three most important ways the
ancient Greeks have influenced our
◦ Draw a picture representing each way that
they have influenced us.