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Athens is the capital and largest city in Greece, With a population of about 3,5 million people and long history, Athens stretches on a large peninsula that is protected by mountains from all sides of the horizon: Mt Egaleo to the west, Mt Parnes to the north, Mt … The core of that character is an implacable will to survive, buttressed by a profound sense of loyalty (especially to the family) and patriotism. Please select which sections you would like to print: Corrections? The government in Greece especially Athens was made based on the democracy. The first history of Athens was recorded around 3,400 years ago making it Europe's oldest capital and one of the oldest cities of the world. Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world and has been continuously inhabited for around 7,000 years! The Ancient Greek Empire spread from Greece through Europe and, in 800 BC, the Greeks started to split their land into city-states, each with its own laws, customs and rulers. According to the Greek mythology, Cecrops, who was half man and half serpent, founded Athens and became the first king. During the time of the Ancient Greeks it was the center of power, art, science, and philosophy in the world. Athens is the capital of Greece. Raphael School of Athens Facts You Didn’t Know school_of_athens_painting_facts An architect and a relative to Raphael who took him to Pope Julius II, Bramante actually helped Raphael with the architectural elements in the painting , hence so having an awful resemblance to the St. Peter’s Basilica. This set a mod… The ancient heroes, too, were vain about both themselves and honour, boasting as much about outwitting the enemy as about outfighting him. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. It was known for the amount of learning that happened there. 10 Facts About Athens To Know About. The climate of Athens is benign: frost is rare (the minimum temperature is 32 °F, or 0 °C) and snow seldom lies, while the summers, though hot (maximum temperature is 99 °F, or 37 °C), are dry, and a fresh northeasterly wind often blows by day. 12. One of the weird facts about Athens, is that it only became the capital city of Greece relatively recently. The people of Athens believed that no one group of people should make the laws and so citizens could choose the government officials, and vote for or against new laws. Athens is also the capital city and a centre of politics and tourism. The city was freed in 1833, and in the following 170 years it was the scene of more than a dozen revolutions, another brutal foreign occupation, and a civil war of especial savagery. 10. Hitler and Rommel were there on the eve of the Soviet Invasion. King Otto (see fact 7) changed it from the Port of Nafplio in 1834 for sentimental reasons related to the city's glorious past. The city of Athens, Greece, with its famous Acropolis, has come to symbolize the whole of the country in the popular imagination, and not without cause. Greater Athens has an area of 165 square miles (427 square km). The reason for this, is that Ancient Greece was not a country, but a collection of independent city states. 1. Notably, in 2004 the world came to the city for the Olympic Games, which spurred a dramatic makeover for Athens. Yet such considerations are superficial when compared with the fecundity of Athens’s bequests to the world, such as its philosophy, its architecture, its literature, and its political ideals. So, let’s take a look at 12 facts about the sacred hill of Athens. During German occupation (1941-1944) it was used as Nazi HQ. Weird Fact: The first modern king of Greece was a Bavarian prince and only 17 years old. 8. It is the oldest civilization where the first recorded human inhabitants were in 3000 BC. The city started to decline in 529, when the Emperor Justinian I closed its philosophical schools. 5. Athens, Modern Greek Athínai, Ancient Greek Athēnai, historic city and capital of Greece. Ancient Athens spanned several thousand years, from about 6,000 BC to about 322 BC. It also had its own Constitution. Fact 27: Athena was the guardian of Athens. Athens was at the centre of an area known as Attica. The Athenians invented democracy, a new type of government where every citizen could vote on important issues, such as whether or not to declare war. Professor of Archaeology, American School of Classical Studies at Athens, 1949–71. 12. Facts about Ancient Athens will inform you about the largest city of Greece. Many of Classical civilization’s intellectual and artistic ideas originated there, and the city is generally considered to be the birthplace of Western civilization. The most important cities in ancient Greek were Sparta and Athens. They may have shared the same cultural, religious and linguistic heritage, but they were ruled independently. Athens, now the capital of Greece, is located on a peninsula that stretches southeastward into the Aegean Sea. 3. She was the daughter of Zeus; no mother bore her. The sporting event known as the "Marathon" was created for the first Modern Olympic games set in Athens in 1896. When approached from the west, from elsewhere in Europe, what strikes the visitor is the influence of the East—in the food, music, and clamorous street life—perhaps vestiges of a time when Athens was divorced from European society under the yoke of Ottoman rule. The city center of Athens is only 15 sq miles or 39 sq kilometers. It is generally believed that the city was named after the goddess of wisdom, Athena. Athens is one of the cities with the longest history in the world. Acropolis holds the world’s oldest weather station If it … Nevertheless, it is wrong to say that Athens is a mixture of East and West: it is Greek and, more particularly, Athenian. Some three centuries after the death of Pericles (429 bce), Athenians entered upon a period of bondage that lasted almost 2,000 years. 4. Athens is statistically one of the lowest ranking capital cities when it comes to violent crime. The first settlers in Athens were from various ethnic groups that were organized in several kingdoms. The ancient Olympic games were never actually held there. It had many fine buildings and was named after Athena, the goddess of wisdom and warfare. The long oral tradition, alive even under the invader, has reflected and stimulated a taste for rich talk. The Greek Orthodox Church, which is directed by a synod sitting in Athens, was a main force in keeping alive the Greek language, tradition, and literature when such things were forbidden, and most people still support it. It is really worth a visit, and to make … Athens also created the world's first known democracy. It Was Settled In Prehistoric Times As of May 2019, the population of Athens is about 3 million people. That act saved it later from destruction of non Christian temples, in times of deep Theocracy. Of course, the poetic impulse to make a good story better leads to considerable exaggeration in daily conversation, suiting a vanity that goes with a sharp-edged sense of personal and family honour and the spoiling of children. Actress, activist, and Minister of Culture, Melina Mercouri, is credited with the establishment of the institution, the "European Capital of Culture." Athens did not have a king, it was ruled by the people as a democracy. Athens is the symbol of freedom, art, and democracy in the conscience of the civilized world. Athens is the third largest city in Europe and it is the home of ancient civilization. It is a center for economic, political, financial and culture life in Greece. Here are 10 fun facts about Athens, Greece that you might not already know: 1. They Say of the Acropolis Where the Parthenon Is… One of the main attractions in Athens is an ancient fortification on top of a hill in the middle of Athens. Athens is a Beta global city according to the Globalization and World Cities Research Network, and is one of the biggest economic centers in southeastern Europe. Athena was the Goddess of War, the female counterpart of Ares. Athena is one of the 12 Olympian Gods who resided atop Mount Olympus.The Olympians are a race of deities who are a third or fourth generation of immortal beings and they were worshiped as the principal deities of the Greek pantheon.The Olympians managed to become the supreme deities after a 10 year long struggle … City Of Athens Facts 42. Athens, with its tall buildings and contemporary shops, is the first European city when approached from the Middle East. Athens is one of the great cities of the world. It has been continuously habited for at least 3,000 years Find out how much you can save Athens was a great center for art, literature, philosophy, and education. 2.The Greeks had some strange superstitions about food – some wouldn’t eat beans as they thought t… Athens was a powerful city in Classical times. Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. The surrounding mountains—Párnis, 4,636 feet (1,413 metres); Pentelicus (Pendéli), 3,631 feet; Hymettos (Imittós), 3,365 feet; and Aigáleon, 1,535 feet—add to the impression of barrenness. The people of Athens chose their ruler. Hence, it became a symbol of Athenian economic prosperity. Omissions? Athens began as a small, Mycenaen community and grew to become a city that, at its height, epitomized the best of Greek virtues and enjoyed such prestige that the Spartans refused to sack the city or enslave the citizens, even after Athens' defeat in the Peloponnesian War. Athens is the second capital city of Greece. Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world as well, with recorded history going back over 3400 years. There were many important city-states in Ancient Greece, but Athens was perhaps the most important and the most powerful. The city covers a total area of 412 square kilometers (159 square miles). Here are some facts about Ancient Athens. The Parthenon in Athens, Greece #2 She is one of the twelve Olympian Gods. Athens lies 5 miles (8 km) from the Bay of Phaleron, an inlet of the Aegean (Aigaíon) Sea where Piraeus (Piraiévs), the port of Athens, is situated, in a mountain-girt arid basin divided north-south by a line of hills. The city center of Athens is only 15 sq miles or 39 sq kilometers. It is located in Central Greece in the southern part of the region of Attica. Athens was the … Greater Athens has an area of 165 square miles (427 square km). The Horologium and the Orthodox cathedrals, Ancient History Encyclopedia - Athens, Greece, Athens - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Athens - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). The oldest hotel in Athens, The Grand Bretagne, was first the royal guesthouse. Six display archaeological treasures uncovered during the metro's construction. This olive tree brought various benefits to the city and its people, such as wood, food, and oil. The nights are cool. The sacred hill of Athens continued changing with every new civilization that passed from the city. In addition to building a raft of new sports venues and facilities (including a stadium designed by Santiago Calatrava), Athens undertook massive transportation infrastructure improvements that included dramatic expansion of public transportation and the construction of a new international airport. To put its age into perspective: the first... 2. It became capital during the reign of King Otto in 1834. 1. Today, the population of Athens including its parent state Attica, reaches the number of approx. The millennia of oppression, instead of driving the Athenians into obtuse moroseness, have honed their wit and rendered them tough but supple, while centuries of privation have only preserved their warmth and generosity. 2. 1 % Athens cradle of Western civilisation. Fun Fact: Every full moon in August, the Acropolis stays open until 2am with live music and theatrical performances; it is free to all. Interesting Facts about Athens 1. Around the tenth century B.C., the settlers form… The city, after all, nurtured Western civilization thousands of years ago. It’s Europe’s oldest capital city. Athens is named after Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom and war, and daughter of Zeus. Fact 26: Athena offered the first olive tree as a gift to Athens. The climate of the city permits outdoor activity the year round and has had an important effect on both the style of architecture and the life and political institutions of the city. It was also the first Greek city-state to adopt a fully democratic system of government. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. The first history of Athens was recorded around 3,400 years ago making it Europe's oldest capital and one of the... 2. 9. 1. The Athens Larger Urban Zone (LUZ) is said to be the 8th most populated LUZ in the European Union. 15 Incredible Facts About Athens. 3. During this time it grew from a small fishing village to the most important city in the ancient world. Athens became the first in 1985. You’ll need to match them to their countries. Both Athens and Sparta hold historic value for Greece and the world. Key Facts & Information Basic Facts of Athens and Sparta. Her temple was the Parthenon. IT’S THE MOST FAMOUS OF MANY ACROPOLEIS. The Athens metro currently has twenty-eight stations, all of which exhibit artwork by contemporary Greek artists. 6. Athens was the largest and most influential of the Greek city-states. Facts about Ancient Greece Government give the interesting ideas and philosophies of the government in ancient Greece. Athens’ origins date back to 3,000 B.C. Other city states in Greece also applied democracy, but the records for the application were abundant in Athens. It was known as a beautiful public buildings, public bath, shops, and busy city. How well do you know the world’s capital cities? She was Zeus’s favorite child. The Ottoman T… Fun & Interesting Facts about Athens Along with being the capital of Greece, Athens is also the capital of the Attica Periphery and the Athens Prefecture. Athens lies 5 miles (8 km) from the Bay of Phaleron, an inlet of the Aegean (Aigaíon) Sea where Piraeus (Piraiévs), the port of Athens, is situated, in a mountain-girt arid basin divided north-south by a line of hills. Athens - Athens - The city plan: In 1833 there was almost no Athens at all. The Romans, the Byzantines, the Latin crusaders, the Ottomans, and finally the modern Greek state, all left their mark on the rocky hill. Facts about Athena. Athens holds a special place in the history of Western Civilization. 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