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by Archaeology Newsroom

“Greco-Roman Civilization”: Is Such a Term Valid?

The topic of this article is the ideological use of the classical past during the post-classical period (3rd century B.C.-3rd century ad).

The term “Greco-Roman civilization” is used widely in the terminology of Historiography, in order to signify the cultural amalgam that derived from the meeting of the Roman power with the Greek spirit. Regardless of how fluttered the modern Greeks may be by the saying that “Greece subordinated the brutal Latium by its spirit”, reality, or at least its fragments, traceable in various sources of the Hellenistic and the Roman-occupied area, narrate a quite different story. It is really sad that only few Greek philologists and historians have dealt with the relation of Hellenism and Rome, the main reason for this attitude being, that the official ideological approach in all levels of Greek education has until recently idealized the fifth-century B.C. Athens. It is probable that Greece’s accession into the European Union will emphasize the study of Roman Greece, as the new circumstances that Hellenism will face, will demand the creation of a new, ecumenically oriented ideology.