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Classics encompasses a lot of different facets because it can reach out to a lot of different subjects. It is centered on the age of the Greco-Roman world, which was strongest from around the 1500s BC to the 500s AD. You might focus on philology, which is the study of language preserved in written sources. It would be a lot of Latin. You might combine with an archaeology major and study the different artifacts of the time in Greece and Rome. If you have an interest in art, you might look at the great sculptures of Greece, architecture styles like Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian, or the wonderful Roman art. Philosophy got its start here, so you might focus on the great philosophers like Plato, Socrates, and Aristotle.
For me, Greek mythology is the thing that excites me the most. Private classics tutors put the glad in gladiator as you learn about the real story behind Hercules. When Disney came out with Hercules, I was hooked. If they keep doing more live-action remakes of their cartoons, I really hope that Hercules comes soon. Once I saw that I started learning more about myths. I became obsessed with a book series called Myth-o-Mania, which told the stories of familiar myths from the perspective of Hades, who had traditionally been seen as a bad guy, being the god of death. That followed into learning the real stories behind myths, which are so cool and fun.
Although it is blasphemous to most to believe in these gods, Greek gods are more representative of fables. There are fantastical stories like in the Bible, but the moral lessons at the end seem almost like Aesop, which makes sense when you consider that he was Greek. There are a lot of life lessons, like the dangers of hubris and arrogance, avoiding the lures of temptation, and respecting your family and community.
One of the myths that many people know is the one of Sisyphus and the boulder he was forced to push up a hill for the rest of eternity. The story began with Sisyphus as a brutal schemer that was the king in Ephyra. He was known for killing travelers and guests to exert his rule over the land. In one of his most twisted plots to dethrone his own brother, he seduced his niece, with the intention of using the children they had together to unseat her father. She found out about his plan and killed the children to prevent his plot. You thought Game of Thrones was crazy? Talk to the Greeks. Sisyphus sealed his fate when he betrayed one of Zeus’ secrets for his own selfish gain. He was taken to the Underworld by Hades, but Sisyphus turned the tables and chained Hades before he could be chained himself. He went back up to the living realm and went back to causing trouble, scolding his wife for not burying his body, even though he told her to throw his naked body into the middle of the public square. It was a weird test of her love for him, but, in defense of Sisyphus, what kind of person just says “okie dokie” when they are told to throw their husband’s naked corpse into the middle of a public place? It is the simplest test and she failed miserably. When Sisyphus was recaptured, Zeus decided to put an end to the trickery. He told Sisyphus he could leave if he rolled a heavy boulder to the top of a hill, but enchanted the boulder to roll away right when he gets close. No matter how many tricks he had, Sisyphus was defeated.
There is an almighty power to the Greek gods, but the morals are pretty simple. Do not use reproduction as a plot to take power, do not try to outsmart the gods, and, overall, just be a good person. Do not be a Sisyphus. If you want to learn more about the life lessons in mythology, search for classics tutors near me and we can find someone that can make it all Greek to you, but in a good way.
As awesome as Greek mythology is, it is not the only part of an education in classics, which is why we find all sorts of classics experts to join our private classics tutoring. Ancient Greece is represented by a time period that goes from the Persian invasions in the Greco-Persian wars to the death of Alexander the Great. Although Greece is still Greece, this society is nothing close to how we are today, which is why this time period is so interesting to learn about.
Ancient Greek is also not the same as Greek, as the language has undergone significant evolution over the centuries. It was the language of the great author Homer and of many classical Athenians. Many English words and words in other European languages are rooted in the vocabulary of Ancient Greece. Greek and Latin words have been used for a very long time in the science community as well.
For those into reading the true version of the Iliad or Odyssey, without the translation, you might learn about Ancient Greek before moving on to get into the great literature. The tale of Oedipus is one of the stories that has survived for centuries, still creeping people out with the incestuous thoughts. It is really surprising that it has stayed relevant for so long, but maybe it is exposing our sympathy toward flawed people, especially someone with as much internal strife as Oedipus.
Bill and Ted might have had to go back in time to learn from the teachings of “So-crates,” but you can get a taste of what he had to offer by searching for classics tutoring near me. Our great educators can help you look at all of the moral quandaries and social issues that were discussed by Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, and everyone else in the philosophy gang. We are looking for all different specialties of classics, so we can serve every need out there.
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