Throughout history different civilizations have experienced Golden Ages. A golden Age is signified by peace, prosperity, and technological advancements. Golden Ages have occurred in Greek, Roman, Chinese, Indian, and Byzantine civilizations. Greece under the rule of Pericles and China during the Han and Song Dynasties were important periods of history that have contributed to modern society. During the Han Dynasty, China was the most technologically advanced civilization in the world; the method of making paper out of wood pulp was invented and the basic method is still used to manufacture paper today (Doc. ). One advancement during the Song was the development of gunpowder in the 800s. The use of gunpowder was beneficial during wars and battles. During the Han Dynasty, trade improved, as well as agriculture. The Silk Road which extended throughout China was one of the main trade routes used to ship goods in and out. Under the Hans, Confucianism became the official belief system of China. They also setup a Civil Service Exam based on Confucianism. This exam was required to enter service in the government.
The Confucian system of government was used in China for most of the last 2000 years. Han artists and architects are noted for their detailed carvings in jade, wood, or ivory, and the building of elaborate temples. The also advanced the process of silk making, which set the standard in China for centuries. They created new works of literature and music. Beautiful murals were painted on the walls of palaces. Scroll painting began. Craftsmen made jade jewelry and carvings, gold ornaments and belt hooks, delicate paintings with wire thin brush strokes.
Iron was used for making plows and other cast iron objects. Han physicians developed acupuncture to alleviate pain and to treat various illnesses. They also made use of certain plants as herbal remedies. They were able to diagnose and successfully treat various illnesses with these techniques. Acupuncture is still used today in the same way and plants remain an important treatment for illnesses, such as marijuana. Paper, paper money, the mechanical clock, and the seismograph are just a few things we still use today.
A seismograph helps you determine the magnitude of an earthquake. Paper money was important because, it is lightweight and less likely to get stolen. Jobs that required the most education were given to people who were most qualified, which is similar to what most countries around the world have today. The Ancient Greek golden age occurs under the leadership of Pericles in the 5th century BCE. These achievements were mainly narrowed to the city-state of Athens, where a strong economy and good government created the conditions necessary for such advancements.
Greek artists portrayed the human figure in realism. Paintings and sculptures showed humans in their perfect form. In medical advancements, Hippocrates, a 5th century BCE doctor, studied the causes of illnesses and experimented with various cures. He is also credited with creating a set of moral standards for doctors called the Hippocratic Oath, which is still used today. Sporting events called the Olympics were held first in Ancient Greece every four years. Today, we have the summer & winter Olympics in various different regions.
Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle were the world’s first philosophers. By asking basic questions about man & the universe, philosophers influenced people to change their way of thinking on many subjects. The Ancient Greeks were the first to use democracy as a form of government. Under Pericles, male citizens in Athens participated in the daily running of government (Doc. 1). This form of direct democracy excluded all non-citizens, such as women and slaves. Today, many governments around the world practice similar forms of democracy.
Greek architects build elaborate buildings using marble and the Greek column (Doc. 2). Famous buildings with Greek columns are situated in countries around the world. They display the three different types of Ancient Greek columns. Doric columns are plain and bulky and usually found on buildings of worship. Ionic columns are also plain in appearance, but taller and thinner compared to a Doric column. They’re found on buildings of political importance. Buildings in the United States such as the White House in Washington D. C, and the University of Virginia are built with columns.
The Greeks had many advancements in math, Hipparchus invented trigonometry, a branch of mathematics. For example, the Pythagorean Theorem which is still used today to find the accurate length of a triangle was invented by the Greeks. These periods of peace and prosperity have greatly impacted other civilizations with their achievements and ideas. There were many other Golden Ages just as significant such as the Roman, Indian, and Byzantine civilization. They all were all technologically advanced and periods of peace, and prosperity. Many of their tools, and inventions are still used in modern day.