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Classical period- Repulse of Persian invasion create lots of creative activity in Greece that was rarely, if ever, matched anywhere at any time. Achievements of such quality produced during time between Persian retreat and Macedonian conquest justify era’s title as CLASSICAL PERIOD. Ironic because classical suggests calm and serenity, but word that best describes the common element present in Greek life, thought, art, and literature in this period is TENSION. Tension- word that best describes common element present in Greek life, thought, art and literature in CLASSICAL PERIOD. Created by things like how greeks recognize fate of xerxes awaits all those who reach too far, or the conflict between the soaring hopes and achievements of individuals and the claims and limits put on them by their fellow citizens in the polis. These forces at work throughout Greece. Golden age- time between the Persian and Peloponnesian wars. Those forces that created tension had most spectacular results in Athens in this age.

Fifth Century:
Attic tragedy- nothing reflects tension concerns better than the appearance of attic tragedy as a major form of greek poetry in this time. Tragedies presented as part of public religious observations in honor of Dionysus. Festivals were civic occasions. Poet wants to compete, submits work to archon. Each offer 3 tragedies (might or might not have common subject) and satyr play (comic choral dialogue with Dionysus) to close. Three best competitors each warded with 3 actors and a chorus. Actors paid by state. Chorus provided by wealthy citizen selected by state to perform this service as choregos. Most tragedies performed in theater of Dionysus on south side of acropolis. Prizes/ honors awarded to author, actor, and choregos voted best by a jury of Athenians chosen by lot. Sometimes subject is contemporary or historical event, but usually mythology. Before Euripides, is only religion, politics, ethics, morality. Architecture- great architectural...
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