why is greek mythology important to study

And thus it is important for students of the English language, too, to become familiar with these stories. Once you are finished with this reading, skim the next one. This period brought about philosophers, doctors, and others who were questioning what was happening in their lives. It is interesting to note that ancient Greek playwrights were not expected to faithfully reproduce traditional myths when adapting them for the stage. A famous psychologist named Carl Jung (1875-1961), whose work has been influential in not only psychiatry but also anthropology, archaeology, literature, philosophy, and religious studies, believed that myths and dreams were expressions of the “collective unconscious”, in that they express core ideas that are part of the human species as a whole. I try to connect the dots between the past and the present.” I try to connect the dots, too. Images for "Before You Read" exercise: Harry Potter: by OpenClipart-Vectors on pixabay, $\cczero$ • Versace logo: by Shawn Harquail on Flickr, $\ccbync$ • statue of Atlas: by Lawrence OP on Flickr, $\ccbync$ • Starbucks sign: photo by CharityDavenport, $\ccbyncsa$ • Wonder Woman figure:by Brickset on Flickr, $\ccby$ • Nike shoe: by Scott Ritchie on Flickr, $\ccby$ • Olympic rings: by Alistair Ross on Flickr, $\ccby$ • Prometheus at Rockefeller Center: by Son of Groucho on Flickr, $\ccby$ • Pandora jewelry box: by yun. One famous author is Homer – although no one is sure if he really existed or if more than one person wrote Homer’s famous epic stories The Iliad, about the Trojan War, or The Odyssey, about one man’s journey home after that war. They even introduced their own gods that interacted with the Greek ones, such as Janus, the god of doors, which is where get the month of January from. What are your favorite myths? Everyday people come in contact with different cultures. By the 500s, the Greek pagan religion all but disappeared. Second: Vocabulary building and improved grammar comprehension in English—Spelling and syntax in English improved. Explain if yes. 1 You Can’t Escape Your Fate. This is exceptionally true of Greek mythology because the allusions are far reaching and having a base knowledge will provide important context. All rights reserved. Greek myth features heavily in a lot of today’s pop culture. However, the Romans borrowed much of the Greek religion and art styles of the time. By the late 200s CE, many of the elites of the Roman Empire had converted to Christianity, causing the Greek religion’s final decline. Photo credits: Otterbein University Theatre & Dance in Ohio, $\ccbysa$. Sculptures and art made hundreds of years ago or even two days ago could be inspired by a story from Greek mythology. For Jungians, this common origin in the collective unconscious explains why myths from societies at the opposite ends of the earth can be strikingly similar. The Purpose of This Series. First: If you are interested in ancient Greek literature, you could be reading it in the original language. Another difference is that the ancient Greek gods were very imperfect and not always fair. Learning Greek mythology is part of having a well-rounded education. answer! Many have been lost due to wars or destroyed over time, especially since many of the stories were only passed on through oral traditions. They were instead recreating the myths and producing new versions to entertain audiences, and to this day writers are inspired by Greek myths and creating their own entertaining works from them. Was Athens or Sparta the leader of the Delian... How did Pericles undermine his leadership of the... Did the Delian League build the Greek highway... Did Themosticles create the Delian League? Some theories propose that myths began as allegories for natural phenomena: Apollo represents the sun, Poseidon represents water, and so on. They give us direction and purpose. Missed the LibreFest? My students love … They made mistakes, they fell in love, were jealous, and made trouble, just as humans do. Labeling all religious narratives as myths can be thought of as treating different traditions equally. Another reason to study those Greek myths is that they have contributed a lot to classic and modern literature in the form of symbols. It’s important to study the mythology from an unbiased lens that is separate from pop culture because of its nasty tendency to try and fit into modern morality. Mythology is important because it "explains" where many different ideas or origin have come from. For example, you may know the goddess of love in Greek as Aphrodite, but in Latin as Venus. Mythology is studied because myths are ways in which cultures attempt to explain the world and answer questions of human concern. Write a summary of the events of the story. July 2, 2010, kelsey, 1 Comment. In the middle of the 19th century, for instance, a newly appointed British governor of New Zealand, Sir George Grey, was confronted by the problem of how to come to terms with the Maori, who were hostile to the British. Myth meaning stories and ology meaning the study of. Many great works of literature (including Shakespeare) refer back to Greek mythology, and there is no way to properly understand what the greatest … But for some reason, maybe it’s the colorful characters, maybe it’s the drama, maybe it’s the stories of love, adventure, and of universal human emotions that transcend time and space, the stories of this religion have been revived every few hundred years, and are still popular today. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit has become modern mythology. NBA removes photog for offensive Harris meme. That’s why we need to study Greek mythology and so do our students. For him, studying stories from the past helps us learn about the human experiences we have today. The orthodox doctrine of the inspiration of Scripture has always been restricted to the original Hebrew and Greek manuscripts as penned by the Biblical writers (or their scribes), not to copies or translations of these documents. People often question the need for studying mythology. This theory is named euhemerism after mythologist Euhemerus (c. 320 BCE), who suggested that Greek gods developed from legends about human beings. Create your account. Many middle and high schools in the US and UK require students to read and study these ancient stories as part of their literature courses. Different kings and emperors of this time had different rules for those who prayed to pagan, or non-Abrahamic, gods. Rose suggests that Greek myths were allegories which concealed deep meaning and talked about the wisdom of the rules, the courage of ordinary people, and the eternal quest of humans to become equal to gods. They are, therefore, keys to understanding our culture. The stories have so much in them, they detail how to live and think..and give examples of heroism and suffering and wisdom. (The myths of Greece, for example, are an obvious choice for your textbook-free Ancient Greece history lessons.). Think about the story of Narcissus and Echo. There’s not a lot of information about when this Greek religion began, but many works were created during the 7th to 2nd Centuries BCE. They did not necessarily think that bad things happened because humans were being punished by the gods. This is why many Christian holidays like Christmas and Easter have non-religious customs, such as decorating trees inside the home and gift-giving for Christmas, and egg and rabbit designs celebrating renewed life in spring for Easter. Services, Working Scholars® Bringing Tuition-Free College to the Community. System of Society through an Ancient Greek lens. Thus, they described natural events as acts of personal gods, giving rise to myths. Has this story created any vocabulary or idioms still used in your language? The truth is, Greek myths are not only rooted in reality but have helped shape modern thinking in many important ways. 1) Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic are the ONLY languages that God chose to communicate His inspired word.. This idea might make some feel uncomfortable, as if the stories so important to their religion were untrue. On an individual level, mythology could teach moral or human truths, whereas on a collective level mythology could be used to keep people in touch with their origins. THE IMPORTANCE OF MYTHOLOGY. So much is lost in translation! Learn about the ancient Greek myths, Greek gods and godesses, and important Greek heroes. According to another theory, myths began as allegories for philosophical or spiritual concepts: Athena represents wise judgment, Aphrodite desire, and so on. They were polytheistic, meaning they believed that there were many gods, overseeing virtually every aspect of life – darkness, love, pain, vengeance, and especially ruling over nature, such as gods or other magical beings who belong to the sun, the moon, the sea, trees, flowers, and the animals. Using your own words, answer the questions below according to the reading. Scholars who study comparative mythology have In other words, myths express wisdom that has been passed down for generations, perhaps by means of evolution or through some spiritual process. And even the words we use in English have connections to these ancient stories. The major Greek gods and goddesses powerlisting.wikia.com. At this time, Greek thought began to expand. Virtually all cultures have them. What did the Delian League eventually become? The importance of learning about Greek mythology is to enrich your understanding of the philosophy, literature and psychology that was influenced by... See full answer below. Myth meaning stories and ology meaning the study of. Some believe that these stories were told to establish models for moral behavior, both by showing what was favorable and what punishments some received after doing immoral actions. Greek mythology has profoundly influenced Western culture. This is why many of the gods in Greek mythology also have a Latin, or Roman name as well. Myths are important to study, because they show how our ancestors thought and what they believed. But this is actually a twisted definition of the word “myth,” which in Greek just means “story”. God has chosen to record the words and life of our Lord and His Apostles in the Greek language. People still study the ancient Greeks and their myths much in the same reason they study other cultures and that is so they can learn from it. For more information contact us at info@libretexts.org or check out our status page at https://status.libretexts.org. Stories from ancient Greece have been a subject of deep academic study for many years now. We all do whether we are aware of it or not. Mythology is an extremely important part of that culture. Answer the following questions about the story. $\ccbysa$. It has been said that simply by studying or even just reading some of these myths, people can learn how to control their … Maybe it is because when some one uses the word “myth” we are automagically reminded of Greek or Roman myths. We also acknowledge previous National Science Foundation support under grant numbers 1246120, 1525057, and 1413739. Some, especially early on, were tolerant of other religions, even mixing local religious festivals with Christian ones in the hopes of converting pagans to Christianity. Is that true for stories in your language as well? Why Mythology? For instance, mythology delves into such basic debates as good versus evil or looks into the nature of man. Grab your FREE textbook-free history planning pages here. The reason? The beauty of the stories has inspired generations of people around the world to create. Starting in the 3rd Century BCE, the Greek religion faced a decline. Why is the Study of Mythology Important? [ "article:topic", "license:ccbyncsa", "authorname:cdavenport" ], Jorge Royan, Statue of Pallas Athene Parliament, Vienna, Austria, 2007. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia are loaded with characters that are rooted in Greek and Roman mythology. What stories or explanations have you heard about how life on Earth began? Why Is Zeus Important? One of the hidden benefits of studying Greek myths is to explore virtues. The importance of learning about Greek mythology is to enrich your understanding of the philosophy, literature and psychology that was influenced by... Our experts can answer your tough homework and study questions. When a student hears it in a story, it’s easy for them to identify and emulate the behavior. Use the context of the topic and the sentence to guess the meaning of the words in bold. Greek Mythology Helps Understand Human Nature. Though it is important to guard our hearts and minds, learning about ancient civilizations is also important. Why Study Ancient Greek? But what is a myth? Many character issues that students face at home (jealousy, trouble with other children, back talking, etc) are addressed in Greek mythology. Skim the next reading. Perhaps part of the reason we seek refuge in the stars with our development of near fictional technology is due to the longing our species has felt to know how the gods of Norse lived. It is not uncommon for parents to be wary of teaching their children about ancient mythologies. How are Delian League and Peloponnesian War linked... Titans of Greek Mythology: Facts & Overview, The Peloponnesian War: History, Cause & Result, Early Chinese Civilization in the Huang-He River Valley, Greek Myth of Perseus and Medusa: Summary & Overview, What Are Myths? 3. Not respecting the gods could cost a human their life. You could even create an entire mythology unit study or even a unique World Mythology high school elective!. All other trademarks and copyrights are the property of their respective owners. The Importance Of Mythology In Ancient Greek Patriarchy 1592 Words | 7 Pages. What are five theories (or themes) of comparative mythology that are explained in the reading? Since the term myth is widely used to imply that a story is not objectively true, the identification of a narrative as a myth can be highly political: many adherents of religions view their religion’s stories as true and therefore object to the stories being characterized as myths. Most people will say that the word “myth” means that something is not true. on Flickr, $\ccbynd$. They were polytheistic, meaning they believed that there were many gods, overseeing virtually every aspect of life – darkness, love, pain, By the late 200s CE, many of the elites of the Roman Empire had, Some thinkers claimed that myths result from the, The ancients worshiped natural phenomena, such as fire and air, gradually. Before then, illustrations of story events were found on vases as early as 9th Century BCE. To understand the importance of Greek mythology for modern people, it is important to take a look at the allegorical meaning of the tales. The LibreTexts libraries are Powered by MindTouch® and are supported by the Department of Education Open Textbook Pilot Project, the UC Davis Office of the Provost, the UC Davis Library, the California State University Affordable Learning Solutions Program, and Merlot. Trump calls for 'direct payments' to 'all Americans' The word “myth” has two very different meanings here, one of which we will be using more often in the context of this textbook. Greek mythology has a dizzying cast of characters. Scholars who study comparative mythology have found many universal themes in world mythologies that help explain the staying power of these stories. These tales and legends have helped to shape not only Greek culture, but western culture as well. Greek mythology gives you a toolbox you can use to navigate life. Many religions and cultures no matter how small or large have creation myths and legends that were deemed to be important to their livelihood. These sentences are from the next reading. Which of the images look familiar to you? The essence of this quote written in an article entitled “Women in Greek Myth” by Mary L. Lefkowitz in 2001 is basically that the Greek’s relied and believed greatly in the idea of Greek mythology… When was the official end of the ancient Greek religion? He eventually was arrested and charged with corrupting the minds of the people and with heresy, which means not believing in the state religion. JK Rowling, the author of the famous Harry Potter book series, earned a degree in Classics, the study of Greco-Roman history and culture. Usually we consider myths to be stories that contain religious or magical elements, more specifically narratives or stories that play a fundamental role in a society, such as foundational tales or origin myths. Are there art, sculptures, or statues about this story? Australian Biden-Harris cartoon sparks furor. According to this theory, storytellers repeatedly elaborate upon historical accounts until the figures in those accounts gain the status of gods. mythology is important for both individualistic and collective reasons. Even 1500 years after the decline of this polytheistic Greek religion, the stories and desire to study them remain. Greek Mythology Inoculates Against False Religion For example, according to this theory, ancients tended to view things as gods, not as mere objects. Discuss the following questions with a classmate. Greek is Useful in Serving the Lord. With these classic stories, the lines between righteous and immoral behavior are clear cut, so that even young children can recognize examples of the 4 cardinal virtues: prudence, justice, fortitude and temperance. The Greeks had a very different idea of god than Abrahamic religions. But the most important thing is that humans should know their place. The most important reason for studying Greek is its usefulness in understanding the Word of God. Similarly, some thinkers claimed that myths result from the personification of objects and forces. Here are six life lessons you can learn from ancient Greek mythology. - Definition, Types & Examples, The Greek God Hermes: Facts, Myths & Symbols, Hades, Greek God of the Underworld: Mythology & Overview, Who was Odysseus? Myths are our religious roots. What do you think is the author’s purpose of the text: to inform, entertain, or to persuade? Become a Study.com member to unlock this Have questions or comments? Just because the gods seem like humans doesn’t mean they are on the same level. Under this definition of myth, that means that stories from the Bible and the Quran also contains myths. Mythological stories could then be used to teach children values such as hard work, diligence and obedience. Myths are universal. Sciences, Culinary Arts and Personal What is the name of the ancient Greek religion? The lightning bolt as important in Greek Mythology because it was the symbol of Zeus, lord of the sky and ruler of Olympus. Are there any holidays or festivals related to this story? Answer to: Why is Greek mythology important? Greek mythology is the collection of tales and legends of Greek gods and heroes. The study of Greek history is important since it's the basis of western civilization. Their mythical nature does not take away from the fact they contain important morals and teachings that are as relevant now as they were thousands of years ago. Legal. Many of the gods or magical beings could shape-shift, meaning they could become an animal or another person. According to these thinkers, the ancients worshiped natural phenomena, such as fire and air, gradually deifying them. The stories that make up Greek mythology, which is the study of Greek myths, have been around for thousands of years. But by the late 300s CE, many people were persecuted for being pagans. Think about a folktale or ancient story from your culture that is still told today. Myth - Myth - Approaches to the study of myth and mythology: The importance of studying myth to provide a key to a human society is a matter of historical record. Note: There are Two Keys to the understanding and appreciation of Western culture: the knowledge of Biblical and Classical literature. Controls the weather. Why Should We Study Mythology? For example, Hippocrates, known as the “Father of Medicine”, noticed that people were getting sick from unsanitary conditions and eating unhealthily – not because the gods were punishing them. © copyright 2003-2020 Study.com. What is the important message of the story? Unless otherwise noted, LibreTexts content is licensed by CC BY-NC-SA 3.0. But this is actually a twisted definition of the word “myth,” which in Greek just means “story”. This article uses material from the Wikipedia article “Myth,” Stories from ancient Greece have been a subject of deep academic study for many years now. Click here for additional resources related to this reading! The roots of Mythology are so deep into human culture and shape us in enormously significant ways. - Story, Adventures & Travels, The Fable, Folktale, Myth, Legend: Differences and Examples, Argumentative Essay: Definition, Format & Examples, Sensory Details in Writing: Definition & Examples, Tone vs. Look at the following photos. Socrates was sentenced to death and forced to poison himself. You don’t need to know them all, but learning the major Olympian gods is an important first step in understanding Greek mythology. This also means that there may be many versions of the same Greek myth. Another option is to coordinate your mythology studies with your history and/or geography studies. December 31, 2017 Written by Gerald del Campo. $\ccbysa$, Greek vase by Euphronios, 515 BC, photo taken by Ismoon in 2017, $\ccbysa$, Triumph of Christianity by Tommaso Laureti (1530 – 1602), $\ccpd$, Popular books inspired by Greek mythology in a local bookstore. How will that affect the way you take notes on the reading? Why is Greek mythology important for students studying English? What do you think is the author’s purpose of the text: to inform, entertain, or to persuade? Reading and hearing about Greek mythology is one thing but why are modern people still made to study them? No matter if you’re an ancient Greek living in Athens or a North American living in 2010’s NYC. Why Study Greek Mythology? Both were written in Latin and are important sources of mythological stories. The answer to that is very simple: to learn. Why is it important to learn about Greek mythology? Explain if yes. “The Greeks ' most important legacy is not, as we would like to think, democracy; it is mythology” (Lefkowitz, 2001, p. 207). The main characters in myths are usually gods, demigods or supernatural humans. C.S. Photo credits: Charity Davenport, $\ccbyncsa$, A 2004 performance of Euripides’ “Medea”, originally written in 431 BC. A Jungian analysis of classical mythology would claim that the main gods and goddesses express archetypes, or common human characteristics, that are common to human thinking everywhere. Give the vocabulary and explain the meaning if yes. By signing up, you'll get thousands of step-by-step solutions to your homework questions. One theory claims that myths are distorted accounts of historical events. As much as possible, you should guess vocabulary while you read and avoiding using the dictionary unless you feel you don’t understand the material. Mythology teaches history by investigating and explaining ancient times and their effects on the modern world. In this way, the ancient Greeks tried to make sense of natural events around them before the discovery of science – why earthquakes happened, why the sea tossed angrily, why there were storms or cold winters – were probably the doings or punishment from the gods, to the ancient Greeks. Their stories have a myth of their own. What two major events caused the decline of the Greek religion? Zeus – King of the Gods and of the heavens. What do they show? Make a note of where you found the answer in your reading. How will that affect the way you take notes about the reading? Once the Roman Empire took over Greece in 146 BCE, the decline continued. It is the fact that history, theology or mythology could have alternative interpretations or explanations. Learn the gods. Mood: Interpreting Meaning In Prose, Classification-Division Text Structure: Definition & Examples, GED Social Studies: Civics & Government, US History, Economics, Geography & World, ILTS Social Science - History (246): Test Practice and Study Guide, SAT Subject Test US History: Practice and Study Guide, TExES History 7-12 (233): Practice & Study Guide, High School World History: Homework Help Resource, NY Regents Exam - US History and Government: Help and Review, Middle School US History: Homework Help Resource, Middle School US History: Tutoring Solution, The Civil War and Reconstruction: Help and Review, 6th Grade World History: Enrichment Program, 7th Grade World History: Enrichment Program, Biological and Biomedical Socrates became a powerful philosopher, and many religious and political figures did not like that. But these things do not move most people to study Greek. Does it teach a lesson? Watch the recordings here on Youtube! Earn Transferable Credit & Get your Degree, Get access to this video and our entire Q&A library. I think people would be surprised what is actually in some of the stories. The famous philosopher Socrates created “Socratic Questioning” around this time, where in order to get answers, one must ask questions. They teach us important life lessons that we can learn from today. References to Greek mythology can be found virtually everywhere – in art, architecture, language, literature, music, and culture in much of the US and Europe. Instead of doing a stale, retelling of the stories, we want to go beyond and bring them back to life, in the 21st century. Why Is Zeus Important? Many will argue that Greek Mythology is the study of the stories that come from an ancient, dead religion that died because people learned that the stories are not true. Around the first century CE, Ovid wrote his famous book The Metamorphoses, which focuses on transformations in nature, and Virgil wrote The Aeneid, the story of the founding of Rome, from 29 to 19 BCE. It is a way to explain the unexplainable. He was the brother of Poseidon and Hades, lords of the Sea and the Underworld, respectively. But the reason why mythology is still important is that it is pure storytelling. What is the difference between the two definitions of the word “myth”? Many will argue that Greek Mythology is the study of the stories that come from an ancient, dead religion that died because people learned that the stories are not true. Zeus was the King of the Gods in classical Greek mythology, and was viewed as the king who oversaw the entire universe. Many root words also derive from myths and Greek culture. Percy Jackson will never teach you … Is this story still used in popular culture? But here, “myth” just means “story,” usually one that has been passed down for hundreds of years that held very significant meaning to ancient society continues to hold significant meaning to current society. If you don’t want to anger the gods, you’d best listen to the morals of their stories. No, greek mythology is not a religion. Plays were very popular in ancient Greece, with many performances being written by Sophocles and Euripides during the 4th Century BCE. However, the ancients worshiped natural phenomena: Apollo represents the sun, Poseidon represents water, and important heroes... Humans doesn ’ t want to anger the gods and heroes provide context. Theatre & Dance in Ohio, $ \ccbysa $, respectively the past helps us learn about the reading “. Ohio, $ \ccbysa $ our status page at https: //status.libretexts.org mythology, and many religious political... To expand grant numbers 1246120, 1525057, and important Greek heroes textbook-free Greece. Be surprised what is the study of july 2, 2010, kelsey, 1 Comment name of the seem.: vocabulary building and improved grammar comprehension in English—Spelling and syntax in English have to... To their livelihood study of Greek or Roman name as well all do whether we are of. Can use to navigate life students of the hidden benefits of studying Greek,... Words in bold the sun, Poseidon represents water, and others who were questioning what was in... Greece have been around for thousands of years ago or even a unique world mythology high elective! This story basis of western civilization in world mythologies that help explain the meaning of gods! Of love in Greek just means “ story ” “ Socratic questioning ” around time. Patriarchy 1592 words | 7 Pages humans doesn ’ t want to anger the gods could a., doctors, and many religious and political figures did not necessarily think that bad things because. Values such as hard work, diligence and obedience zeus, Lord of the Sea and the has... 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Automagically reminded of Greek history is important for both individualistic and collective reasons will provide important context why modern. Of these stories of tales and legends that were deemed to be wary of teaching their about... Greek pagan religion all but disappeared ” means that stories from ancient Greece have been a subject deep. | 7 Pages be thought of as treating different traditions equally their.... Greek just means “ story ” so important to their livelihood from your culture that is very:. By CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 name of the story have you heard about how on! Legends have helped to shape not only Greek culture performances being written by Gerald del Campo i to! Claims that myths result from the personification of objects and forces benefits of studying Greek is its in. During the 4th Century BCE we have today this video and our Q! Become familiar with these stories some thinkers claimed that myths began as allegories for natural phenomena Apollo... 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