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Greek And Roman Culture

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Greek and Roman culture, although similar, are very different and interesting. Since the Romans adopted culture from the Greeks, many traditions are the same. When the Romans conquered the Hellenistic cities, they became fascinated with the idea of a Greek style of doing things. All things Greek were now considered popular. This is how much of the Greek way of life made its way into the Roman society.

The first part of culture that the Romans adopted was the Greek art. Scores of Greek paintings were stolen from Greece and imported into the Roman Empire. Roman artists began adopting the Greek style of art, from the emotional intensity to the great detail. “In many cases, it is very difficult to distinguish between Hellenistic works, Roman copies of Greek works, and Roman originals.”( se/mythology/0100/ancient.htm) The Romans helped to preserve much of the Greek art, which might have otherwise been destroyed.

Another thing that the Romans and the Greeks have in common is the beautiful architecture. Roman architecture, although similar to Greek architecture in the beginning of its popularity, changes a little in the course of Roman history. First of all, the Romans could build bigger and better buildings with the primitive concrete that they developed, something which the Greeks didn’t have. Roman architecture also had many more arches and domes, something which the Greeks didn’t use. Another difference in the architecture is the long and useful aqueduct system. This was developed by the Romans to bring running water into the houses of wealthy Romans and to the public fountains and baths. The Greeks, although advanced for their time, still got water out of wells and streams. The Roman temples were almost identical to the Greek temples, except for a few details such as domes and vaults which made the temples sturdier and more beautiful.

The Romans developed a great skill of building roads. The roads were complex, and the design is used still today. The roads are higher in the middle so that the water runs off the sides. These roads were made so well that they basically lead the Romans to victory, allowing the Romans to move quickly and efficiently to the battlefield. Greek didn’t have the technologies to make these roads. Another thing Rome was good at was making bridges. If Rome had to cross a river to get to a battle, they built a well-made bridge and marched their soldiers across it. The Greeks, although advanced, were not advanced enough to be able to build these great wonders quickly and efficiently.

The Romans and Greek houses were similar, yet different. The Roman houses usually composed of many stories, but many of the Greek houses didn’t, due to their lack of concrete. The Romans had many rooms in their houses, usually each for a specific purpose. Greeks, on the other hand, had many of their rooms dedicated to gods, and only a few rooms. Many Greeks had their houses made out of pebbles, clay, or mud, which had to be kept up, since it would wear away and disintegrate. Greek houses were planned around a courtyard with a garden and statues in it.

“In the modern mind (at least in the modern American mind) Greek and Roman culture and mythology are classed together. An indication of this is that the academic study of the Ancient Greeks and Romans are general put into the same Classics department.”( Greek mythology had more individual gods, gods that would have unique characteristics and flaws. There were gods for just about everything, whereas in Roman mythology, the gods were more generalized. The gods also had different amounts of respect. In Greek mythology, the god Ares, the god of war, was shown as a simpleton who had no composure and wasn’t important. On the other hand, the Romans revered their god of war, Mars, with great prestige. This shows that the Romans were a society more focused on war.

Most of Roman mythology and religion was taken from the Greeks and changed a little. Many of the Roman gods correspond almost directly to a Greek god. The Romans also didn’t write much about the trials and tribulations of their gods. The Greeks, on the contrary, wrote long epics and poems about gods, giving us much of what we know today.

The Greeks and the Romans differed in their ways of thinking. Greek had great philosophersвЂ"Plato, Aristotle, SocratesвЂ"who ask such great philosophical questions that philosophers even today ask these same



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