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The Greek Literature

Literature has many phases in different languages all over the world. Let us briefly know about Greek Literature, as it is considered one of the oldest literature before English and French.


Although Greek literature is deeply rooted, its ancient origin started around 800 B.C. in the form of epic, lyrics, poetry, tragic and comedy drama, philosophy, and novels. We can say that Greek literature is responsible for today's vast literature.


The earlier form of writing was in the Mycenaean age, written on clay tablets in the form of Linear B syllabary- records were mainly of inventories and receipts. Also, there were some features of poems found during this age. It was around 1500 B.C.


The central theme of ancient Greek Literature is tragedy and comedy. Later, fables like Aesop(using animals to teach moral lessons) were introduced. Tragedy drama included themes like love, loss, pride, abuse of power, and the relationship between men and gods. According to Aristotle's theory, a tragic drama should have six elements- the Plot, Tragic Hero, thought, diction, spectacle, and the chorus.


Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey were the two great epics that marked the beginning of Greek Literature in the 8th century. The rise of Greek Literature from oral tradition to written was because of Homer and Hesiod’s plays- Sophocles and Aristophanes. Not only this, the literature includes the philosophies of Plato and the.


Western literature was influenced heavily by Greek literature. The beginning of English shows the sign of influence from Greek and Roman Literature.


Greek Literature is divided into four phases-


• Pre-classical- revolving around myths, which include works of Homer and Hesiod.


• Classical- includes the works of drama and history- works of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle


• Hellenistic- this period shows the empire of King Alexander, the Macedonian Kingdom. Most of the literature works emerged during his kingship by Theocritus, Callimachus, and Apollonius of Rhodes.


• Roman Age- The decline of the Macedonian Empire after the attack by Rome, the Roman Empire took over the reign.


Greek writing became more commonplace in modern times. This period also showed the coming of Roman influence and renaissance and science. The theme of romance was introduced in their writings. The Greek authors George Seferis and Odysseas Elytis received Nobel Prize in Literature in this period.


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