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Greek Mythology and Literature

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1 Greek Mythology and Literature
Key Terms mythology Homer Sappho Aesop fables

2 Mythology Ancient Greeks were polytheistic.
A body of stories about gods and heroes that tries to explain how the world works is called mythology.

3 Greek Gods Greeks believed gods caused natural events and made the world go ‘round. They created myths to explain these events and the gods’ actions. Apollo Zeus Poseidon Hermes

4 What about Hephaestus’ picture lets us know it’s him?
Hephaestus (hi-FES-tuhs) was the reason for volcanic eruptions. He lived underground and made weapons and armor for other gods. When volcanoes would spit lava, it was said to be from his underground forge where he made the materials.

5 Demeter Demeter’s daughter was kidnapped.
The kidnapper allowed Demeter to see her daughter every six months. During the six months without her daughter it would be winter in Greece. The other six months would be summer.

6 The Oracle of Delphi The Greeks built great temples honoring their gods. When the Greeks needed advice, they traveled to Delphi in search of answers. The oracle of Delphi was a female priest of Apollo who they thought the gods gave answers. Leaders asked the oracle how to rule. In return for the respect, Greeks expected help.

7 Heroes and Mythology Theseus slayed the minotaur. Not all myths were about gods, but rather about heroes from different city-states. Some heroes were real people. Other heroes were fictional. Heroes had special abilities or fought terrible monsters. Hercules is the most famous of Greek heroes. He slayed the hydra, a huge snake with nine heads.

8 Ancient Greek Literature
Homer’s poems were memorized by Greeks and are seen as some of the greatest works of literature ever! Ancient Greek Literature The Illiad tells the story of the Trojan War and Achilles, the greatest of all Greek warriors. Greeks created great works of literature. A poet named Homer wrote the Illiad and the Odyssey. Both describe great deeds performed by heroes. The Odyssey describes the challenges Odysseus faced returning home from war. He faced monsters, magicians, and angry gods.

9 Today, the words of songs are called lyrics after these Greek poets.
Lyric Poetry Other poets wrote poetry that were set to music called lyres after the instruments played while the words were recited. The most popular poet who wrote lyres was Sappho (SAF-oh). Sappho was a woman who wrote poems about love and relationships. Today, the words of songs are called lyrics after these Greek poets.

10 Fables Other writing was done to teach lessons.
Characters in fables are usually animals. Fables Other writing was done to teach lessons. Aesop (EE-sop) is famous for fables, short stories that teach the reader lessons or give advice. Examples of Aesop’s fables are “The Ants and the Grasshopper,” “The Tortoise and the Hare,” and “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.”

11 Greeks Influence Language
Europe is named after a Greek princess, Europa. The Atlas Mountains are named after the giant Atlas. Greeks Influence Language Many words we use today come from ancient Greece. Some include: *titanic - something large and powerful. Named for Titans, large, powerful gods. *odyssey - a long journey after Odysseus and the journey he took in the “Odyssey.” Although people no longer believe in Greek gods, their influence can be seen all around us in movies, sporting events, and in art galleries.

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