Ancient Greece – 7b Greek Influence
What did the Greeks do for us?
Many of the things that make the UK a really safe and desirable place to live were actually invented by the Greeks – we just copied them.
First off the Greeks gave the world democracy – which we still use in Britain today to choose who runs the country. In ancient Athens, citizens met regularly to vote on the laws that changed their daily lives using a simple show of hands by all. However, women, slaves and foreigners were banned from voting. So it wasnt as democratic as initially thought.
The Greeks also gave us the Olympic Games. The very first Olympics took place in 776BC. The only event was a 200m foot race and the winner was a humble baker named Coroebus. As time went on the Greeks added more events making it more like the Olympics we know today. The Greeks can also take credit for inventing modern mathematics, sculpture, philosophy, science and even medicine.
Finally, our language has roots in ancient Greece, from the individual letters through to complete words like dinosaur and helicopter.
What impact did the Greeks have on us today?
Ancient Greek thinkers made big discoveries. Pythagoras found ways to measure and describe shapes that we still use in maths today. Aristotle studied plants, animals and rocks. He devised experiments to find out about the world we live in. Modern scientists do the same kind of thing.
Herodotus wrote a history of the Greeks. Modern historians have similar methods in finding out about the past. The Greeks are famously known as philosophers. Socrates and Plato were philosophers, they asked, “What is a good life?” and “How do we think?” Philosophers today ask and attempt to answer similar questions.
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