This article is an answer to the article entitled BIG Greek Lie # 6 by Mr Risto Stefov
Greeks never claimed that Geometry discovered from them. Any student in the Greek schools , mathematician college (world wide) in the first day in the classrooms teached as about the history of the Geometry:
Egyptians (2000 – 500 B.C.)
Ancient Egyptians demonstrated a practical knowledge of geometry through surveying and construction projects. The Nile River overflowed its banks every year, and the river banks would have to be re-surveyed.
Babylonians (2 000 – 500 B.C. )
Ancient clay tablets reveal that the Babylonians knew the Pythagorean relationships.
Greeks (750-250 B.C. )
Ancient Greeks practiced centuries of experimental geometry like Egypt and Babylonia had, and they absorbed the experimental geometry of both of those cultures. Then they created the first formal mathematics of any kind by organizing geometry with rules of logic. Euclid’s (400BC) important geometry book The Elements formed the basis for most of the geometry studied in schools ever since.
As you see the Greeks just transform Geometry from experimental practice into formal mathematics. Greeks were the first who asked “why is that?” and attempted to answer “because this” speaking about geometrical or natural matters as first time expressed from the Euclides.
As already said all these thinks teached in the 1st grand of the Greek High School.
Greek never claims that invented the alphabet even some scholars support this theory.
The major difreent between Phoenician and the Greek is that the first is Consonantal Alphabetic when the second is a C&V Alphabetic.
Phoenician alphabet has no vowels.
Both scripts belong in Proto- Sinaitic family tree.
From the shape of the letters, it is clear that the Greeks adopted the alphabet the Phoenician script, mostly like during the late 9th century BCE.
In fact, Greek historian Herotodus (5th century BCE) called the Greek letters “phoinikeia grammata” (foinikia grammata), which means Phoenician letters,
When the Greeks adopted the alphabet, they found letters representing sounds not found in Greek. Instead of throwing them away, they modified the extraneous letters to represent vowels. For example, the Phoenician letter ‘aleph (which stood for a glottal stop) became the Greek letter alpha (which stands for [a] sound).
There were many variants of the early Greek alphabet, each suited to a local dialect. Eventually the Ionian alphabet was adopted in all Greek-speaking states, but before that happened, the Euboeanvariant was carried to the Italic peninsula and adopted by Etruscan and eventually the Romans.
Early Greek was written right-to-left, just like Phoenician. However, eventually its direction changed to boustrophedon (which means “oxturning”), where the direction of writing changes every line. For instance, you start on the right of the tablet and writes leftward, and when you reach the leftmost end, you reverse your direction and starting writing toward the right. Even more confusing is that the orientation of the letter themselves is dependent on the direction of writing as well. In the above chart, the letters are drawn as if they were being written from left-to-right. If I were to write right-to-left, I would horizontally flip the letters (like in a mirror).
Boustrophedon was an intermediate stage, and by the 5th century BCE, left-to right was the de-facto direction of writing.
The Greek alphabet was also the basis for Glagolitic, Cyrillic, and Coptic scripts among others.
Strangely, the Greeks tried writing once before. Between 1500 and 1200 BCE, the Mycenaeans, an early tribe of Greeks, has adapted the Minoan syllabary as Linear B to write an early form of Greek.
However, the syllabary was not well suited to write Greek, and leaves many modern scholars scratching their heads trying to figure out the exact pronunciation of Mycenaean words. The alphabet, on the other hand, allowed more precise record of the sounds in the language
More information’s as about the scripts into:
ANCIENT GREEK DEMOCRACY
In our everyday vocabulary we are borrowed from the ancient Greeks: monarchy, aristocracy, tyranny, oligarchy and – of course – democracy.
Sparta never has a democratic form rule. Monarchy was the main government form. As also and the Macedonians, Thebans e.t.c..
Mr Stefov you said What exactly do we mean by “democracy”.
I start with mine questions and of course by giving answers in yours.
What’s in a word?
We may live in a very different and much more complex world, but without the ancient Greeks we wouldn’t even have the words to talk about many of the things we care most about. Take politics for example: apart from the word itself (from polis, meaning city-state or community) many of the other basic political terms in our everyday vocabulary are borrowed from the ancient Greeks: monarchy, aristocracy, tyranny, oligarchy and – of course – democracy.
The ancient Greek word demokratia was ambiguous. It meant literally ‘people-power’.
But who were the people to whom the power belonged?
Was it all the people – all duly qualified citizens?
Or only some of the people – the ‘masses’?
The Greek word demos could mean either. There’s a theory that the word demokratia was coined by democracy’s enemies, members of the rich and aristocratic elite who did not like being outvoted by the common herd, their social and economic inferiors. If this theory is right, democracy must originally have meant something like ‘mob rule’ or ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’.
By the time of Aristotle (fourth century BCE) there were hundreds of Greek democracies. Greece in those times was not a single political entity but rather a collection of some 1500 separate poleis or ‘cities’ scattered round the Mediterranean and Black Sea shores ‘like frogs around a pond’, as Plato once charmingly put it. Those cities that were not democracies were either oligarchies – where power was in the hands of the few richest citizens – or monarchies, called ‘tyrannies’ in cases where the sole ruler had usurped power by force rather than inheritance. Of the democracies, the oldest, the most stable, the most long-lived, but also the most radical, was Athens
The origin of the Athenian democracy of the fifth and fourth centuries can be traced back to Solon, who flourished in the years around 600
BCE. Solon was a poet and a wise statesman but not – contrary to later myth – a democrat. He did not believe in people-power as such.
But it was Solon’s constitutional reform package that laid the basis on which democracy could be pioneered almost a hundred years later by a progressive aristocrat called Cleisthenes. Cleisthenes was the son of an Athenian, but the grandson and namesake of a foreign Greek tyrant, the ruler of Sicyon in the Peloponnese. For a time he was also the brother-in-law of the Athenian tyrant, Peisistratus, who seized power three times before finally establishing a stable and apparently benevolent dictatorship. It was against the increasingly harsh rule of Peisistratus’s eldest son that Cleisthenes championed a radical political reform movement which in 508/7 ushered in the Athenian democratic constitution
Greek democracy and modern democracy
The architects of the first democracies of the modern era, postrevolutionary France and the United States, claimed a line of descent from classical Greek demokratia – ‘government of the people by the people for the people’, as Abraham Lincoln put it. But at this point it is crucial that we keep in mind the differences between our and the Greeks’ systems of democracy – three key differences in particular:
ofscale, of participation and of eligibility.
First, scale. There were no proper population censuses in ancient Athens, but the most educated modern guess puts the total population of fifth-century Athens, including its home territory of Attica, at around 250,000 – men, women and children, free and unfree, enfranchised and disenfranchised. Of those 250,000 some 30,000 on average were fully paid-up citizens – the adult males of Athenian birth and full status. Of those 30,000 perhaps 5000 might regularly attend one or more meetings of the popular Assembly, of which there were at least 40 a year in Aristotle’s day. 6000 citizens were selected to fill the annual panel of potential jurymen who would staff the popular jury courts (a typical size of jury was 501), as for the trial of Socrates.
The second key difference is the level of participation. Our democracy is representative – we choose politicians to rule for us. Athenian democracy was direct and in-your-face. To make it as participatory as possible, most officials and all jurymen were selected by the lot. This was thought to be the democratic way, since election favoured the rich, famous and powerful over the ordinary citizen. From the mid fifth century, office holders, jurymen, members of the city’s main administrative Council of 500, and even Assembly attenders were paid a small sum from public funds to compensate them for time spent on political service away from field or workshop.
The third key difference is eligibility. Only adult male citizens need apply for the privileges and duties of democratic government, and a birth criterion of double descent – from an Athenian mother as well as father – was strictly insisted upon. Women, even Athenian women, were totally excluded: this was a men’s club. Foreigners – and especially unfree slave foreigners – were excluded formally and rigorously. The citizen body was a closed political elite
As you see Mr Stefov when compared the ancient Greek democracy and the moderns democracies must keep in your mind the three scales.
You said something about the Phoenicians As I know the form of rule wan not the democracy but the oligarchy and some claim the aristocracy. Non body is accurate as about the rule system.
How you are sure for this?
Aristotle in his Politics defined the democratic citizen as the man ‘who has a share in legal judgment and office’. Maybe is time everyone to read the Aristotle as the Great Alexander had took a lot of lessons as about the democracy
The Democratic Experiment (Paul Cartledge)
So the claims of the Mr Stefov as about Geometry, Alphabete and Democracy are inaccurate and un-historical
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