Category Archives: Ancient Greece:

The Epic of Gilgamesh

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Gilgamesh and Enkidu

The oldest known epic tale in the world was written some 1500 years before Homer the Greek Poet wrote the Illiad.  “The Epic of Gilgamesh” tells us of the Sumerian Gilgamesh, hero king of Uruk, and his adventures.  The epic story was written in cuneiform upon twelve clay tablets, and were discovered by Hormuzd Rassam in 1853, within the ruins of Ashurbanipal library in Nineveh, and it is believed to date around 1300-1000BC.

Gilgamesh the great hero of the Sumerian people; King Uruk dates back to 2100 BC.  His life is full of madness, emotion and anxiety.  The story, the legend of his life has been pieced together from a collection of clay tablets.

At the start, the young king is bursting with energy, a soldier a warrior at heart, and explorer.  His strength knows no limits, he be a great lover, and no virgin was safe.  He desperately longed for a friend, someone who would be his equal, in strength.

The Gods hearing his desire created Enkidu, with the strength of Gilgamesh, wild with matted hair which covered his whole body. He lived amongst wild animals, ate as they did and drank from the streams.  News reached Gilgamesh from a hunter, who had come face to face with this wild and strange creature of the forest.

Gilgamesh knew this was the friend he so desired, one with a strength to match his own.  He hatched a plan; one of the temple prostitutes would enter the woods naked, seek out the said creature and tame him.

Gilgamesh and Endiku met in the marketplace at Uruk, and there was a wrestling match of champions, testing out each other’s strength. People crowded round to watch as Gilgamesh proved triumphant, flinging his opponent upon his back.  From that time a friendship was formed, as these two warriors, hunted panthers and guardians of the cedar forest.  They slew the Bull of Heaven, and Gilgamesh had the horns mounted upon the walls of his bed chamber.

Enkidu fell sick as Gilgamesh sat by his death bed for six days and seven nights.  Finally, death came, as a worm fell out of Enkidu’s nose.  Gilgamesh roared like a wild animal, in response, and roamed the forests, weeping, in fear of his own death.  Gilgamesh ended up at the tavern at the end of the world, and sought out Ziusudra, a demi-god who had never really died.

Gilgamesh constructed a boat complete with punting poles topped with bitumen, and headed across the water to meet with the seer; Ziusudra.  The Seer offered him eternal youth.  All he had to do was obtain a plant of prickly design from the seas’ bottom. Gilgamesh tied stones to his feet and the weight would pull him down, collected the plant of eternal youth, cut himself free of the stones and his body rose to the surface in triumph.

Whilst he rested upon the shore from his exertions, a snake smelled the plant and stole it from him.

Gilgamesh was as good as dead.

Gilgamesh and Enkidu Image: ArtStation

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Ancient History: Naples

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Greek and Roman Naples: The history of Naples begins in the 7th century BC when the nearby Greek colony of Cumae founded a new city called Parthenope.  Cumae itself had been founded by people from Euboea. The inhabitants of Cumae decided to expand is not known for certain, but the Cumaeans built Neapolis (the “New City”) adjacent to the old Parthenope.  At about the same time, they had warded off an invasion attempt by the Etruscans.  The new city grew thanks to the influence of the powerful Greek city-state of Syracuse in Sicily and at some point the new and old cities on the Gulf of Naples merged to become a single inhabited nucleus.

Naples became an ally of the Roman Republic against Carthage.  The strong walls of Naples held off Hannibal.  During the Samnite Wars, the city, was captured by the Samnites. However, the Romans soon took it from them and made Neapolis a Roman colony. Neapolis was greatly respected by the Romans as a place of Hellenistic culture.  The people maintained their Greek language and customs, and  elegant villas, aqueducts, public baths, a theatre and the Temple of Dioscures were built.  A number of Roman emperors, including Claudius and Tiberius, maintained villas in or near Naples.  It was during this period that Christianity came to Naples, and the Apostles St. Peter and St. Paul are said to have preached here.  St. Januarius, who would become Naples’ patron saint, was martyred here.

The Duchy of Naples: Following the decline of the Western Roman Empire, Naples was captured by the Ostrogoths and incorporated into the Ostrogothic Kingdom.  However, the Byzantine general Belisarius recaptured Naples in 536, after famously entering the city via the aqueduct.  The Gothic Wars raged on, and Totila briefly took the city for the Ostrogoths in 543, before, finally, the Battle of Mons Lactarius on the slopes of Vesuvius confirmed Byzantine rule. Naples remained in contact with the Exarchate of Ravenna, which was the centre of Byzantine power on the Italian peninsula. After the exarchate fell, a Duchy of Naples was created. Although Naples continued with its Greco-Roman culture, it eventually switched allegiance under Duke Stephen II to Rome rather than Constantinople, putting it under papal suzerainty by 763.
The years between 818 and 832 were a particularly confusing period in regard to Naples’ relation with the Byzantine Emperor, with feuding between local pretenders to the ducal throne. Theoctistus was appointed without imperial approval. This was later revoked and Theodore II took his place. However, he was driven from the city by a popular uprising and replaced by Stephen III, a man who minted coins with his own initials, not those of the Byzantine Emperor.  Naples gained complete independence by 840.

The duchy was under direct control of Lombards for a brief period, after the capture by Pandulf IV of the Principality of Capua, long term rival of Naples. However this only lasted three years before the culturally Greco-Roman influenced dukes were reinstated.  By the 11th century, like many territories in the area, Naples hired Norman mercenaries, the Christian descendants of the Vikings, to battle their rivals.  Duke Sergius IV hired Rainulf Drengot to fight Capua for him.  By 1137, the Normans had grown hugely in influence, controlling previous independent principalities and duchies such as Capua, Benevento, Salerno, Amalfi, Sorrento and Gaeta.  It was in this year that Naples, the last independent duchy in the southern part of the peninsula, came under Norman control. The last ruling duke of the duchy, Sergius VII, was forced to surrender to Roger II, who had proclaimed himself King of Sicily seven years earlier. This saw Naples joining the Kingdom of Sicily, where Palermo was the capital.

The Kingdom of Naples: After a period as a Norman kingdom, the Kingdom of Sicily passed under the Hohenstaufens, the powerful Germanic royal house of Swabian origin.  The University of Naples was founded by Frederick II in the city, making it the oldest state university in the world and Naples the intellectual centre of the kingdom.  Conflict between the Hohenstaufen house and the Papacy led, in 1266, to Pope Innocent IV crowning the Angevin Duke Charles I as King.  Charles officially moved the capital from Palermo to Naples where he resided at the Castel Nuovo.  During this period much Gothic architecture sprang up around Naples, including the Naples Cathedral, which is the main church of the city.
In 1282, after the Sicilian Vespers, the kingdom split in half. The Angevin Kingdom of Naples included the southern part of the Italian peninsula, while the island of Sicily became the Aragonese Kingdom of Sicily.  The wars continued until the peace of Caltabellotta in 1302, which saw Frederick III recognised as King of the Isle of Sicily, while Charles II was recognised as the King of Naples by Pope Boniface VIII.  Despite the split, Naples grew in importance, attracting Pisan and Genoese merchants, Tuscan bankers, and with them some of the most renowned Renaissance scholars and artists of the time, including Boccaccio, Petrarch and Giotto.  In the middle of the 14 C, the Hungarian Angevin King Louis the Great captured the city.  Alfonso I conquered Naples after his victory against the last Angevin king, René, and Naples was unified with Sicily again for a brief period.

Masaniello the Revolutionary: Sicily and Naples were separated in 1458 but remained as dependencies of Aragon under Ferrante.  The new dynasty enhanced Naples’ commerce by establishing relations with the Iberian peninsula.  Naples also became a centre of the Renaissance, with artists such as Laurana, da Messina, Sannazzaro and Poliziano arriving in the city.  During 1501, Naples became under direct rule from France at the time of Louis XII, and the Neapolitan King Frederick was taken as a prisoner to France.  This lasted only four years.  Spain won Naples at the Battle of Garigliano and, as a result, Naples fell under the direct rule of the Spanish Empire throughout the entire Spanish Habsburg period.  The Spanish sent viceroys to Naples to deal directly with local issues.  The most important of these was Pedro Álvarez de Toledo, who was responsible for considerable social, economic and urban progress in the city.  He also supported the Inquisition.

During this period, Naples was second only to Paris in size among European cities.  It was a cultural powerhouse during the Baroque era as home to artists including Caravaggio, Rosa and Bernini, philosophers such as Telesio, Bruno, Campanella and Vico, and writers such as Battista Marino.

A revolution led by local fisherman, Tommaso Aniello, known as Masaniello, saw the creation of a brief independent Neapolitan Republic, though this lasted only a few months before Spanish rule was reinstated.  In 1656, the plague killed some  300,000 inhabitants of Naples. Finally, by 1714, the Spanish ceased to rule Naples as a result of the War of the Spanish Succession.  It was the Austrian Charles VI who ruled from Vienna, similarly through the medium of viceroys.  However, the War of the Polish Succession saw the Spanish regain Sicily and Naples, which under the Treaty of Vienna, were recognised as independent in 1738 under a cadet branch of the Spanish Bourbons in the person of Charles VII.

Ferdinand, the Bourbon King: During the time of Ferdinand IV, the French Revolution made itself felt in Naples.  Nelson, an ally of the Bourbons, even arrived in the city in 1798 to warn against it.  However, Ferdinand was forced to retreat and fled to Palermo, where he was protected by a British fleet.  Naples’ lower classes, the Lazzaroni, were strongly pious and Royalist, favouring the Bourbons.  In the mêlée that followed, they fought the Neapolitan pro-Republican aristocracy, fermenting a civil war.  The Republicans conquered Castel Sant’Elmo and proclaimed a Parthenopaean Republic, secured by the French Army.  A counter-revolutionary religious army of Lazzaroni known as the Sanfedisti was raised and led by Fabrizio Ruffo.  They had great success and the French surrendered the Neapolitan castles and were allowed to sail back to Toulon.

Ferdinand IV was restored as king. However, after only seven years Napoleon conquered the kingdom and installed Bonapartist kings, including his brother Joseph Bonaparte.  With the help of the Austrian Empire and its allies, the Bonapartists were defeated in the Neapolitan War and the Bourbon Ferdinand IV once again regained the throne and the kingdom. The Congress of Vienna in 1815 saw the Kingdoms of Naples and Sicily combined to form the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, with Naples as the capital city.  In 1839, Naples became the first city on the Italian peninsula to have a railway and there were many factories throughout the kingdom making it a highly important trade and industry centre.

Naples since Unification: Following Garibaldi’s Expedition of the Thousand, culminating in the Siege of Gaeta, Naples joined the Kingdom of Italy as part of the Italian unification in 1861, ending Bourbon rule.  The kingdom of the Two Sicilies had been wealthy and 80 million ducats were taken from the banks as a contribution to the new Italian treasury, while other former states in the Italian unification were forced to pay far less.  The economy of the area formerly known as Two Sicilies collapsed, leading to an unprecedented wave of emigration, with estimates claiming that at least four million of those who left for the north and abroad between 1876–1913 were from Naples or near Naples.

 

Pythagoras the Philosopher

Pythagoras

Pythagoras was born on the Aegean island of Samos, Greece around 580-569BC to parents Mnesarchus a merchant from Tyre (Lebanon) who dealt in gems, and his wife Pythias a native of Samos.  His early childhood was spent in Samos, until he reached an age to accompany his father on trading ships.

Pythagoras was educated as an athlete, but all that changed, and he abandoned his chosen education and devoted himself to the study of Philosophy.  He learnt much from Chaldea and Pherecydes of Syros.

Aged eighteen, Pythagoras met with Thales, an accomplished master of mathematics and astronomy.  The aged Thales is said to have put the young student on the road to understanding science, mathematics and astronomy.  Pythagoras studied with Anaximander a former student of Thales.

In 535BC Pythagoras took advice from Thales and journeyed to Egypt, to be tutored by Temple Priests.  This was at a time, when he needed to escape the tyranny of Polycrates, the then ruler of Samos.  He lived in Egypt for ten years and during his time, completed the rites which gained him admission to the “Temple of Diospolis” and acceptance into the priesthood.  It is believed he also studied under Oenuphis of Heliopolis, an Egyptian priest.

In 525BC, Emperor Cambyses II of Persia conquered Egypt.  Pythagoras was taken prisoner and taken to Babylon.  It was here he associated himself with the Persian priests known as the Magi, and begun studying mathematics, mathematical sciences and music under them.

In 522BC, Cambyses II of Persia died and Polycrates, tyrannical ruler of Samos was killed.  These events gave Pythagoras the chance to return to Samos.

Upon returning to Samos in 520BC, he opened a school called “The Semicircle” and his teaching methods appealed to only a few.  In 518BC he moved his base to Croton, gathering a band of loyal followers.  Later he set up a brotherhood, which developed into a religious/philosophical school with much political influence.

The Pythagoreans, followers of Pythagoras were divided into two sects.  Those who lived and worked at the school were referred to as the Mathematikoi or Learners.  Others located outside the school were known as Akousmatics or Listeners.  Pythagoras was master of both sects.

The Mathematikoi followed strict rules, which defined what they ate, wore or even spoke.  They had no personal possessions and were followers of vegetarianism.  On the other side the Akousmatics were allowed to have their own personal belongings, eat non-vegetarian foods, and attend school during the day only.

The society practiced strict secrecy about rites, rituals and teachings.

Pythagoras made contributions to mathematics…  Today, he is best remembered for his concept of numbers.  He believed everything could be reduced to numbers and each had their strength and weaknesses.  He believed 10 was a complete number because it was made up on the first four numerical digits (1+2+3+4) and when written in dot notation, formed a triangle.  He further believed geometry as the highest form of mathematical studies, through which one could explain the physical world.

Pythagoras’ belief stemmed from his observations of mathematics, music and astronomy.  He noticed that vibrating strings produce harmonious tone only when the ratios between the lengths of the strings are whole numbers.  He later realized that these ratios could be extended to other instruments.

He also propagated that the soul is immortal.  On death of a person, it takes up a new form and it moves from person to person and even to smaller animals through a series of incarnations until it becomes pure and such purification could be undertaken through music and mathematics.

Pythagoras a believer of mysticism, held the belief that certain symbols have mystical significance and that interaction between the opposites was an essential feature of the world.

He taught that Earth was a sphere at the center of the Cosmos.  He held the belief that all other planets and stars were spherical because the sphere is the most perfect solid figure.

Pythagoras is remembered for his concept of geometry. His belief being that the sum of the angles of a triangle is equal to two right angles and that for a right-angled triangle the square on the hypotenuse is equal to the sum of the squares on the other two sides.  Although the theorem had been discovered previously by the Babylonians, Pythagoras was first to prove it…

Pythagoras was very outspoken and as such attracted many enemies.  It is believed; one of those instigated a mob which set fire to his school of learning at Crotana, where forty of his followers were burnt to death.

Pythagoras escaped with his life, and fled to the Locrians who denied him access, and was forced to seek asylum from his enemies at the “Temple of the Muses.”  It is believed he died of starvation around 506BC.

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Homer the Poet

Homer
Homer the Greek Poet

Greek history has seen many men of learning create masterpiece’s, which are read by many to this day.  The poet Homer born between the 12th and 8th century BC, on the coast of Asia Minor, according to historical evidence.

With no factual evidence on his early life, Homer this Greek poet, would be considered a man of mystery, for little is known of him, other than he has been credited with writing two epic works.

“The Iliad” and “The Odyssey” both written in the dialect of Asiatic Greek, give credence to his place of birth.

The Iliad by Homer (Summary)

The Iliad tells us of the siege of Troy, during the Trojan War by the Greek Achaean Army who took prisoner the maidens; Chryseis and Briseis.

Agamemnon takes Chryseis as his prize whilst Achilles claims Briseis.  Chryses father of Chryseis, priest to the God Apollo offers a ransom for her return … it is refused.  Chryses prays to his God Apollo, who sends a plague to bear down upon the Achaean Camp.

Agamemnon consults the prophet Calchas to determine the cause of the plague, which was killing many of his warriors.  His prize, Chryseis was behind the plague, and reluctantly returns her to her father.

He then demands Briseis from Achilles, the Achaean’s greatest warrior who feels insulted by the demand, and refuses to take no further action in the war.  Achilles was that warrior who gave much confidence in battle to many of his warriors.

Achilles calls upon the sea-nymph Thetis to enlist Zeus, in the destruction of the Achaean’s.

A cease fire is declared between the Trojan’s and the Achaean’s, and Zeus supports the Trojans in their time of need.  The Trojan army push back their invaders to their ships and set one on fire.  Without ships the Achaean army would be stranded on Troy.

Achilles concerned for his men, agrees with Patroclus, in letting his loyal friend take his place in battle wearing the armour of Achilles. Hector, warrior for Troy, slays Patroclus.  Achilles filled with rage, rejoins the war and attacks Troy.

Thetis requests the God Hephaestus to forge a suit of armour for Achilles … and he rides out at the head of the Achaean army, early the next morning.

When the Trojan army observe the Achaean’s with Achilles at the front, they flee into the city, seeking the cover of the city walls.  Achilles cuts down every Trojan who crosses his path, until he finally meets his prey; Hector.  In a dramatic fight Hector is slain and Achilles lashes his body to the rear of a chariot, and drags it across the battlefield for all to see.

Both sides agree to a truce, and the Trojans mourn their hero, and give him a funeral deserved for that of a hero.

The Odyssey by Homer (Summary)

Ten years have passed by since the fall of Troy, and Odysseus has not returned to Ithaca; his lands lay in ruins, his palace plagued with suitors, seeking the hand of his wife Penelope, all believing he must surely be dead.

Prince Telemachus son of Odysseus has not the experience in battle to evict them.  Antinous, desires to rid himself of the young prince and obtain dominion over the palace and Penelope.

Odysseus lives; imprisoned on the island of Ogygia by Calypso, who possesses love for him.  The God’s of Mount Olympus hold his life and future in their hands.  Athena goes to the aid of Telemachus who travels to Pylos and Sparta where upon he learns that Odysseus still lives, but remains a prisoner of Calypso.

Telemachus returns home, unaware that Antinous is plotting to kill him when he reaches port.

Zeus sends Hermes to rescue Odysseus from Calypso, who persuades Calypso to let Odysseus build a ship and return home.

On his return trip, Poseidon “God of the Sea sends a storm which wrecks Odysseus’s ship, for Poseidon blames Odysseus for the blinding of his son.

Athena steps in, saving Odysseus from the full wrath of Poseidon and the lands of Scheria home of the Phaeacians.

Odysseus receives a welcome by Nausicaa of the Phaeacians, who ask to hear of his adventures and in return grant him safe passage to Ithaca.  With their assistance he returns to Ithaca disguised as a beggar.  He encounters his son Telemachus who had outwitted the suitors ambush.

Odysseus and Telemachus devise a way of ridding his lands, his palace of these suitors, believing that Odysseus has been killed.  Arriving at the palace, only to be scorned by possible suitors, dressed in the clothes of a beggar.

Penelope found the beggar interesting, yet something very familiar … could it be her husband in disguise she thought?

She organises an archery tournament; who can string Odysseus’s great bow and fire an arrow through twelve axes … I will marry.

Not a single suitor could complete the task, but the beggar did it with ease.  He then turns the bow on the suitors, and with help from his son and servants kills’ every last suitor.

Socrates the Philosopher

Socrates, AC Grayling
Socrates the Greek Philosopher

Socrates was born in 470BC in Athens, Greece.  His father Sophroniscus was a stone mason and sculptor, and his mother Phaenarete was a midwife.

He did not come from noble stock, and therefore would receive basic Greek education, and from there trained under his father as a stone mason.

Socrates married Xanthippe, who blessed him with three sons; Lamprocles, Sophroniscus and Menexenus.

Socrates had devoted much of his time to what became his second profession, that being a philosopher, much to the disgust of his wife, who complained philosophy could not put bread on the table… could not support his family.

Athenian law stated all able bodied men, had to serve as soldiers between the ages of 18-60 and be on call.  Socrates participated in three military campaigns as an infantry man, in the Peloponnesian War at Delium, Amphipolis and Polidaea.  Socrates was known for his courage in battle, and stepped in saving the life of General Alcibiades an Athenian leader.

Socrates was of the belief that the ideals of philosophy should achieve practical results for society.  He went on to point out human choice was a desire for happiness.

He believed his thoughts could be used in the political forum, being neither tyranny nor democracy, instead a government ruled by individuals.

Athens to him was an open styled classroom, where he could ask questions from the men of learning and the common man, seeking to arrive at answers on political and ethical truths.

During the life of Socrates, Athens had recently been defeated by Sparta in the Peloponnesian War.  For Athens and its people it had entered a period of doubt, questioning their identity, their place in the world … They clung to past values.

Socrates attacked these values, many admired him for speaking out and challenging Greek conventional wisdom, but other’s believed he threatened their way of life.

Socrates was convicted for threatening the political stability of Greece, and found guilty.  The jury proposed he should be exiled, but Socrates proposed he should be honoured for his contributions to Athens, and be duly paid for his services.

The jury were not amused by his outburst, and they sentenced him to death; Death by Hemlock poison.

Plato describes Socrates execution:  “Socrates drunk the hemlock mixture without hesitation.  Numbness slowly crept into his body until it reached his heart.  Shortly before his final breath.  Socrates described his death as a release of the soul from the body.”

Socrates died in 399BC by Hemlock poison in Athens, Greece.

Aristotle the Philosopher

Aristotle
Aristotle the Greek Philosopher

Aristotle was born in 384Bc in Stagira, a former seaport on the northern coast of Greece.  His father Nicomachus, was a court physician to King Amyntas II of Macedonia, and mother; Phaestis.

Proxenus of Atarneus, was married to Aristotle’s sister Arimneste, and he became Aristotle’s guardian when his father died.  Aged seventeen Aristotle went to Athens and was enrolled in Plato’s Academy and the two became great friends.

After Plato died, Aristotle attended the court of King Hermias of Atarneus and Assos in Mysia.  During his three year stay met Pythias, they were married, and had one daughter; Pythias named after her mother.

In 338BC Aristotle returned to Macedonia and tutored King Phillips son; Alexander the Great.  In 335BC, when Alexander succeeded his father and conquered Athens, Aristotle went to Athens.

Plato’s Academy was now being run by Xenocrates, a leading influence on Greek thought.

With Alexander the Great’s agreement, Aristotle opened his own school in Athens; the Lyceum, and spent his time as teacher, researcher and writer at his centre of teaching.

Aristotle life was shattered when Pythias his wife died, the very same year the Lyceum opened its doors.

Herpyllis formerly from Stagira, the place of his birth and a slave presented to him by the Macedonia court.  He freed her, then married her, and she bore him a son; Nicomachus after Aristotle’s father.

When Alexander the Great died in 323BC the pro-Macedonian was overthrown and Aristotle was charged with impiety.  He fled to Chalcis on the island of Euboea rather than be prosecuted, where he remained till his death.

Aristotle believed knowledge could be obtained by interacting with physical objects.  He recognized human’s play a part in understanding.  He focused much on the concept of logic, and the process would allow man to learn much about reality.  His philosophy provided man with a much needed system of reasoning.  He believed matter was the physical substance of things, whilst form was a unique nature, giving it, its identity.

Plato the Philosopher

Plato the Philosopher
Plato the Greek Philosopher

Plato the Greek Philosopher was born between 424 and 423BC, to parents from the Greek aristocracy.  Ariston his father was a descended from the Kings of Athens and Messenia, whilst his mother, Perictione was related to the 6th century Greek statesman; Solon.  Plato was one of four children, having two full brothers and one half brother.

History tells us that Plato was educated in Athens, and would have studied the works of Cratylus, Pythagoras and Parmenides.  These would have provided him with the base to his studies in Metaphysics (Study of Nature) and Epistemology (Study of Knowledge).

Ariston, his father died whilst Plato was still young, and his mother remarried Pyrilmapes her uncle a Greek politician and ambassador to Persia.

His direction in life came by way of memorable events, first was meeting Socrates a well known and Greek philosopher, and serving in the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta between 409 and 404BC.

Plato considered a career in politics, but his world was shattered when one he looked up to; Socrates was executed in 399BC for speaking his mind.  He turned away from politics to a life of study and philosophy.

For twelve long years, following the death of Socrates, he travelled through the Mediterranean region, studying mathematics with the Pythagoreans in Italy, geometry, geology and astronomy in Egypt.

Shortly after Socrates death he wrote “The Apoloogy of Socrates” and from their wrote many texts including Protagoras and Euthyphro amongst others, aiming to convey Socrates’s philosophy and teachings to the reader.

His middle writings during his life saw Plato write down his own beliefs, not based on others works.  He wrote of justice, courage, wisdom and moderation, based on the individual within society in his works “The Republic.”

His later writings showed Plato taking an in depth study into his own thoughts of metaphysical ideas.  Exploring the role of art, music, drama along with ethics and morality.

“Plato wrote that the world of ideas is the only constant and that the perceived world through our senses is deceptive and changeable.”

Around 385BC Plato founded an Academy which he ran until his death in 348BC.  This academy offered learning, until it was closed by the Roman Emperor Justinian I who feared it be a source of paganism and a threat to Christianity.

One of the academy’s students, was none other than Aristotle, who would join his thoughts with that of Plato, thus creating new thoughts … new ideas.

Plato left an impact on his home of Greece, and far beyond, showing that mathematics in education was essential if one wanted to understand the universe.

His works, give reason in the development of a fair and just society which led to the foundation of the modern democracy.