Ancient Greece was one of the earliest civilizations of world and the first civilization of Europe. The civilization started around 8th century BC in modern day Greece. This civilization is divided into three main periods. The Archaic Greek Period started around 800 BC after the Greek Dark Ages and lasted around 5th century BC. This period was followed by the Greek Classical Period which lasted for around 200 years. The last period of Ancient Greek civilization is known as Hellenistic period which started in 323 BC after the death of Alexander the Great and lasted till 146 BC till the Battle of Corinth when Romans occupied the Greece and the Roman Greek period started.
Archaic Greek Period
The formation of city-states was the main characteristic of this Greek period. These city-states were independent in their everyday matters and bodies of citizens ruled these cities. Each city-state had its own social & financial center, fortified area for defense, religious place (temple), sports gymnasium, theatre for drama, currency (coins) and other several individualities. Messenia, Sparta and Delphi were important city-states of that period. These states also remained hostile to each other due to control of different areas and only united while defending against a foreign invader. This period lasted till 480 BC.
This period lasted for around 200 years. It was a period of deadly wars. Initially, the Greek states united against the invasion of Persian Empire and were able to free different Greek states which were earlier annexed by the Persians. Later, the city states of Sparta, Athens and Thebes confronted each other at different times. The situation changed after the rise of Macedonia.
Philip II ofMacedonia united the whole of Greece under his leadership in 337 BC. Later his son Alexander the Great took his successes forward and captured the Balkans, Levant, Egypt and the Persian Empire including today’s Iran, Iraq, Asia Minor and other adjacent areas.
Alexander the Great died in 323 BC which is the start of Hellenistic Period. During this period, the Greek culture progressed in the lands conquered by Alexander in Europe, Asia and Africa. This period ended in most of the areas in 146 AD after the Roman Empire captured Greece following Battle of Corinth while the complete end of the period is marked by the occupation of Egypt by the Romans in 30 BC. After 146 AD, Greece became a province of Roman Empire.