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Greece: A Short History of a Long Story, 7,000 BCE to the Present

ISBN: 978-1-118-63176-8
224 pages
August 2014, Wiley-Blackwell
Greece: A Short History of a Long Story, 7,000 BCE to the Present (1118631765) cover image


Greece: A Short History of a Long Story presents a comprehensive overview of the history of Greece by exploring the continuity of Greek culture from its Neolithic origins to the modern era.

  • Tells the story of Greece through individual personalities that inhabited various periods in the lengthy sweep of Greek history
  • Uses an approach based on recent research that includes DNA analysis and analyses of archaeological materials
  • Explores ways in which the nature of Greek culture was continually reshaped over time
  • Features illustrations that portray the people of different eras in Greek history along with maps that demonstrate the physical sphere of Greece and major events in each of the periods
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Table of Contents

Preface ix

Acknowledgments xvii

1 Mountains and Sea 1

The Physical Character of Greece 6

Earliest Inhabitants 8

Neolithic Period: Settled Life in Greece 9

Kuria 11

Notes 14

Further Reading 15

2 The Age of Heroes 17

The Role of Islands 19

The Greek Age of Heroes 23

Penelope and Odysseus 26

Notes 29

Further Reading 29

3 End of the Bronze Age: Slow Reshaping 31

The Dark Age 31

Archaic Age: Revival 33

Establishing Classical Greece 35

Hesiod 40

Notes 43

Further Reading 44

4 The Second Age of Heroes: Classical Greece 47

Mediterranean Impact 48

The Golden Age 51

Athens’ Rise to Dominance 55

Socrates, Citizen of Athens: Wisest Man in the World? 58

Outcome: The Peloponnesian War 60

Fourth-Century Greece 63

Notes 65

Further Reading 65

5 Incorporation into a Larger State 67

The Northern Neighbor: Macedon 67

Alexander III 71

Alexander’s Successors 74

The Greatest of Kings: Philip II 81

Notes 85

Further Reading 86

6 Graecia Capta: Roman Control 89

Roman Administration 94

Life in the Province of Achaea 97

Polybius: A Greek Captive Praises Rome 102

Notes 106

Further Reading 106

7 Power Returns to Greece: The Byzantine Empire 109

Separation from Rome 110

Restoration of Order 112

Decline 116

The Byzantine Greek World 117

Administration 119

Economic Health 121

Byzantine Culture 122

Anna Comnena: Daughter of the Emperor and Historian of Byzantium 125

Notes 127

Further Reading 128

8 Ottoman Greece: 1453–1821 129

Ottoman Control of Greece 132

Eighteenth Century 137

Those Who Said “No” 140

Theodore Kolokotronis 140

Adamantios Korais 142

Rigas Velestinlis (Pheraios) 143

Notes 144

Further Reading 145

9 Building a New State: 1821–1935 147

Enter Otto I 153

1862–1913 156

Eleftherios Venizelos, 1864–1936 158

1922–1935 162

Notes 163

Further Reading 163

10 A Player in the Modern World: 1935 to Present 165

Resistance Fighters 168

1944–1952 169

1952 to Present 171

Greece in the New World Order 176

Constantine and Costas Karamanlis 179

Notes 182

Further Reading 182

11 Conclusion: Past and Present 185

Notes 191

Further Reading 191

Chronology: Major Ages of Greek History 193

Index 195

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Author Information

Carol G. Thomas is Professor of History and Vidalakis Professor of Hellenic Studies at the University of Washington, Seattle. Her publications include Alexander the Great in His World (Wiley-Blackwell 2007), The Trojan War (2005), Finding People in Early Greece (2005), and Citadel to City State: The Transformation of Greece 1200-700 BCE (1999).
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"This is an impressive synthesis of the Greeks and their heritages, of major challenges and splendid accomplishments.  It is also a trustworthy guide for students and laypersons interested in the study of great historical themes." – Theofanis G. Stavrou, Professor of History and Director of Modern Greek Studies, University of Minnesota

 “This comprehensive and diachronic account of the Greek experience is a valuable tool for the teaching of Greek history and culture in Classics and History Departments and Hellenic Studies Programmes worldwide.” –Charalambos Dendrinos, Director, Hellenic Institute, Royal Holloway, University of London

“Greek history spans more than five millennia. Readers will find in Greece: A Short History of a Long Story a brief but illuminating introduction to this remarkable story.” –Stanley M. Burstein, Professor Emeritus, California State University, Los Angeles

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