Pyramids In The Pacific  

The Unwritten History Of Australia

Chapter 15

Ancient Greece and the Land of Satyrs

"When you have crossed the stream that bounds

two continents press on, over the surge of the

sea, towards the east where the Sun stalks in

flame, to the Gorgonian land, Cisthene.

There like Phorcys' aged virgin daughters, in

shape like swans, possessing one eye and one

tooth between the three; beings on whom no ray

of sun ever looks down, nor moon at night. And

close to them their three winged sisters, loathed

enemies of human kind, the snake-haired gorgons

whom no man can see and live

Prometheus to Io,

"Prometheus Bound"

Aechylus, 525-456 BC.

Chapter 15 Images

Greek Trireme 480 BC

The beginnings of Greek culture on the mainland and its islands dates from around 4000 BC. By the 2nd millennium BC, a high level of culture had been reached in the Aegean area, its epicentre being the Minoan civilisation on the island of Crete. From there close contacts were maintained with the peoples of Egypt and Asia Minor.

About the 17th century BC, there began a series of invasions by tribes of Archaeans, Arcadians, Aeolians, Ionians and finally, about 1100 BC, the Dorians, all of whom spoke various Greek dialects, although it was the Archaeans who prevailed, to establish the Mycenean civilisation by 1500 BC.

This was the Heroic or Homeric Age, the age which produced some of the most famous Grecian God-Kings; Kings such as Agamemnon of Mycenae and Nestor of Pylos. The story of the Trojan War, used by Homer {800 BC} as the background for his two great epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey, was one of the wars fought by the Greek peoples, during the period they were expanding thier towns along the Aegean coast, at the beginning of the 12 century BC.

This early civilisation collapsed under the invasion of Greece by the Dorians in the 11 th century BC, the Dorians establishing themselves in the Peloponnesos. The Aegean islands and coastal Asia Minor were occupied by Aeolians and Ionians. By 1000 BC Greek speaking peoples had occupied the whole Aegean area.

The formations of the Greek city-states led to an awakening of cultural achievement and racial pride. The Greeks now called themselves Hellenes, after a mythical Hellen from who they traced their descent... The early Hellenic city-states were ruled by kings, later replaced by aristocracies which became prosperous, with the introduction of coined money about 680 BC.

From 750-500 BC, a great age of expansive trade, adventurous voyages of exploration and colonisation developed. The Euboeans established a Greek colony in Italy at Cumae, while the Dorian city state of Corinth founded Cyracuse in Sicily and the Spartans built Tarentum in southern Italy.

Other Greek cities sprang up along the Mediterranean coast as far west as Spain, in southern France at Massilia-modern Marseille, as well as in Africa, but Carthage and Egypt blocked their further expansion. Greek trade with Egypt began in the 7th century BC, resulting in the establishment of the Greek city of Naucratis on the western channel of the Nile River.

Other Greek colonies extended to the Black Sea, and Megara on the Greek mainland was the founder of Byzantium. By the 5th century BC the two most important Greek states were Sparta and Athens.Sparta was a military nation ruled by an aristocracy, while Athens was progressive and democratic, and ruled by the middle class...

Sparta was an armed camp, where youths were claimed by the army for military training at the age of seven. There were two kings; one to rule at home whenever the other led the army at war. The Greek city-states of Asia Minor and the adjacent islands came under the power of King Croesus of Lydia in the 6th century BC, but his overthrow by Cyrus, King of Persia in 546 BC BC saw the cities swallowed by the Persian Empire.

About 512 BC Darius the Persian King invaded Europe and captured part of the Thracian coast and two Athenian colonies. In 499 BC the Ionian cities rose up together with Eritria and Athens. Darius crushed the revolt, and to punish those cities which had opposed him, he launched an expedition against Greece.

His first invasion fleet was wrecked off Mt. Athos in 492 BC but his second expedition crossed the Aegean Sea in 490 BC and sacked Eretria, enslaving the population. However, when they invaded Attica, the Persians received a decisive defeat at the hands of the Athenian army of Miltiades at the Battle of Marathon, forcing them to retreat to Asia.

In 480 BC they returned, led by King Xerxes who planned to attack the Greeks on land as well as at sea. He bridged the Hellespont with boats and a canal was cut through thee isthmus of Mt Athos, to avoid a repeat of the disaster of 492 BC. At this time despite disunity among the Greeks, Athens, Sparta and the Peloponesians opposed the Persians.

Athenian envoys sought advice from the Priestess Aristonice, the oracle Delphi who uttered her famous prophesies predicting the destruction of Athens but that:

"Zeus the all-seeing grants to Athene's prayer

That the wooden wall* only shall not fall, but help you and your children.

But await not the host of horses and foot coming from Asia,

Nor be still, but turn your back and withdraw from the foe.

Truly a day will come when you will meet him face to face.

Divine Salamis, you will bring death to women's son's,

When the corn is scattered, or the harvest gathered in."

{*The wooden wall' was the Athenian fleet*}

Pyramids in the Pacific Images Ch 15


Leonidas King of Sparta