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Our maps of Ancient Greece, including Athens, form a comprehensive narrative of one of the world’s greatest civilizations, the birthplace of democracy. Following the collapse of the earliest Bronze Age Ancient Greek civilizations of the Minoans and Mycenaeans, Greece slowly emerged from a Dark Age into the Classical era in c. 800 BCE. From around 480 BCE Greece entered a golden age. It was divided into many city-states, which were initially ruled by kings, despots, or aristocrats. Gradually, peoples’ councils became more powerful in some city-states, leading to the birth of democracy in Ancient Athens. Art, sculpture, philosophy, and science flourished, and Greeks spread out throughout the Mediterranean, setting up new city-states and colonies. for more details, check – ancient greece map
The Olympic Games, which date back to the Archaic period, became a regular athletic contest between the different polities. However, harmonious relations were not to last, and soon the main city-states of Athens and Sparta became locked in conflict, the Peloponnesian War (431-404 BCE). Greek city-states joined rival defensive leagues, and eventually, the Macedonians became ascendant. The Macedonian ruler Alexander the Great led his army to conquer vast tracts of the Middle East and Central Asia (334–323 BCE), ushering at the beginning of the Hellenistic Age.
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