Priests simply looked after cults; they did not constitute a clergy , and there were no sacred books. If they did not have any gods, not one would take care of them in the dead world. Indeed, the ancient Greeks are regarded as very intellectual, and their civilisation is one of the richest in the ancient world. It is believed to be the second oldest toy in the world after the doll! Other religions (1%) Religion in Greece is dominated by the Greek Orthodox Church, which is within the larger communion of the Eastern Orthodox Church. Now a widespread area of the underworld was the region of Hayes. Centaurs – half-man, half-horse creatures who were wild and lawless but possessed cult… Greek religion consisted of the religious beliefs and practices, such as prayers and rituals, of the ancient Greeks. They loved more a myth and performed a cult. Some cities built more than one temple to honor the same god. People were free to worship whichever gods were most relevant to their lives. When Greek religion took form in Ancient Greece, it was not one nation, but lots of little nations run by councils of princes. The beliefs of the average Greek or Roman might have been influenced both by traditional beliefs about the gods and ideas derived from the teachings of the philsophers. They were human in form and they experienced human emotions (such as: love, hate, jealousy, lust, worry). NAMED AFTER A DEITY IN THE ANCIENT GREEK RELIGION. Keres - evil female spirits 3. With an area of 50,949 square miles (131,958 square kilometers), Greece is roughly the size of Alabama. Hermes 6. The most-striking characteristic of Greek religion was the belief in a multiplicity of anthropomorphic deities under one supreme god. Hence the spirit would haunt the face of the earth forever. Ancient Greek religion includes the various beliefs and rites that took place in Ancient Greece through cults and were part of Greek mythology. 4. The Greeks believed that these gods and goddesses controlled everything in their lives and the environment. Human life is subject to the whim of the gods and to Fate; these can be controlled through sacrifice and divination. Religion; Sports; All Interesting Facts; Geography; Europe; Greece Facts; 86 Interesting Greece Facts. There were also … All rights reserved. They believed that the gods will make their life better. The exact origins of tragedy (tragōida) are debated amongst scholars. 1-5 Ancient Greece Facts 1. The Ancient Greeks believed in many different gods and goddesses. Another aspect of Greek religion worth mentioning is the set of mythological and sometimes monstrous creatures that populate its myths, the most notable being the following: 1. Satyrs – half-man, half-goat nature spirits who dwelled in woods and mountains and were lusty followers of Dionysus 5. Ancient Greek civilization, the period following Mycenaean civilization, which ended about 1200 BCE, to the death of Alexander the Great, in 323 BCE. Ancient Greek religion encompasses the collection of beliefs, rituals, and mythology originating in ancient Greece in the form of both popular public religion and cult practices. Medusa –a winged female monster with hair made of snakes. They also believed that if they did not hold a funeral for the departed, then the soul of that person would never get the chance to reach that underworld. It is widely accepted that Athens was the birthplace of a vote-based system of government, and despite several hypotheses to the contrary, Athens remains the inspiration for later democracies. ancient form extinct; various modern revivals. The Greek Empire was most powerful between 2000 BC and 146 BC. It was important to please the gods; happy gods helped you, but unhappy gods punished you. There was no distinction between the sacred and secular: What we now call religion was intertwined with daily life and the state. In the month before the ancient Olympics, no wars were permitted so that spectators could travel from across Greece … There have been 14 main Greek goddesses and gods which include Zeus, Poseidon, Hera, Apollo, Aphrodite, Artemis, Ares, Hephaestus, Dionysus, Athena, Demeter, Hades, and Hermes. The ancient Greeks were much indulged in dark theological thinking. There was a god for every aspect of their lives. It may be fair to say that most aspects of their lives were guided by religion. Animal sacrifice, harvest offerings, festivals, games, processions, dance, plays, in honor of the gods. Greece religion inherited much from the primitive religions: animism and demonism. The ancient Greek religion was a personal polytheistic religion, shared by common sense, and handed down orally through generations. Ancient Greece was a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the … The ancient Greek religion consists of various rituals as well as beliefs which were practiced both publically and as cults too. It's difficult to accept the idea that the Greeks were completely secular and irreligious, however. It’s believed the first Ancient Greek civilisations were formed nearly 4,000 years ago (approximately 1600 BC) by the mighty Mycenaeansof Crete (a Greek Island). In fact, the gods and goddesses that we know as the Olympian Gods were something that many religious experts accept as being at … The ancient Greeks worshiped forces in … You can find some of the sacrifices described in Homers Odyssey. 2.The Greeks had some strange superstitions about food – some wouldn’t eat beans as they thought t… The ancient Greeks believed that the human qualities could be found in the gods and goddesses. Religion was deeply rooted in the life of ancient Egyptians. There was no separation of church and state. interacting with the divine. In addition, philosophers like Plato and Socrates addressed the subjects we often group under "religious" today, such as the meaning of life, the existence of an afterlife, the nature of the universe, and the nature of gods. Although it may be common to speak of a Greek "religion," in fact the Greeks themselves didn't use such a term and might not have recognized it had someone else attempted to apply it to their practices. Religion wasn't simply a part of the lives of the ancient Greeks and the ancient Romans; religion was the lens through which they understood the universe and all the events within it. To be in favor of the gods, they had to make sacrifices.The Greeks believed in life after death with Hades in the underworld. The sacrifices were restricted to the domestic animals, which were done at the altar accompanied by prayers and hymns. Apart from sacrifices and ceremonies, ancient Greek religion also had a lot of temples which were built in the name of the different gods. Hence the spirit would haunt the face of the earth forever. They believed that they were watched over by Zeus and other gods. Amazons - race of female warriors 2. Greeks are responsible for introducing many literary forms and were pioneers in in many professional fields such as physics, philosophy, history, geometry, and biology. Published February 3, 2017 Updated April 3, 2020. Copyright © 2020 Ancient Greece Facts.com. 90. The gods and goddesses were very important in the life of the Greeks. By Karin Lehnardt, Senior Writer. Hera 7. © 2004-2020 ReligionFacts. In the ancient world, "religion" and "philosophy" were not completely distinct entities. The religious customs of ancient Greece varied greatly from place to place and among the different classes. Greek culture began in Paleolithic era and has been evolving ever since. The Ancient Greek gods were very much like incredibly powerful humans. The Hermes Group is not the only modern-day company named after this ancient figure. People would bring offerings, usually food, to the temples when they prayed. Ares 10. Although the religions of the ancient Greeks and Romans are virtually extinct in their original forms, they live on in the cultures, imaginations, and even the religions of the modern western world. You will learn about daily life and how they tried to make sense of the world with Philosophy. there was a long period of peacetime in ancient Greece. Demeter 9. The gods of this ancient Greek pantheon were very human. They had no a special religious ideologues. During 332-275 B.C. Athena 3. They believed each temple they built should honor only one god, no matter how big or elaborate the temple. Greek religion Facts. This religion unified the Greeks, and made them more productive in the arts, architecture, and politics. Greek religion – ancient Greece Greek religion: Athena protects her worshippers (Andokides Painter, ca. Priests were assisted by attendants. In the ancient world, "religion" and "philosophy" were not completely distinct entities. Ancient Greece was split into many different states, each one was ruled in its own way. ReligionFacts provides free, objective information on religion, world religions, comparative religion and religious topics. Here are 40 interesting Ancient Greece facts. Aphrodite 8. Ancient Greece was the basis of much of Western culture today, including the belief in democracy, equality under the law and even trial by jury. We are not associated with any religion or organization. Another was called Tartarus where all those who were damned went to as a torture area. This area was ruled by a god who was called Hades. The religious beliefs of the ancient Greek culture were well defined. 5 Facts About Hermes 1. Now the ancient Greeks were the ones who believed in the concept of an afterlife. We hope you have … Hephaistos 13. These groups varied enough for it to be possible to speak of Greek religions or "cults" in the plural, though most of them shared similarities. Each of the Greek gods was responsible for a particular aspect or area of life. Powered by WordPress and Stargazer. Two of the most powerful empires in the ancient world were Greece and Rome. 89. They believed that an underworld existed where all the spirits of those who passed away went to. Greek Religion fast facts and introduction. Zeus was the king of gods, but he did not rule alone, and needed help from the other gods. The Ancient Greeks lived around 3,500 years ago their legacy shapes the world we live in today. Now the ancient Greeks were the ones who believed in the concept of an afterlife. Zeus 2. Ancient Greek religion says that great warriors like Achilles, Ganymede, Ino and so on, those who had fought the Trojan wars and also the Theban wars, lived in Elysium forever, after their deaths. Others suggest a strong link with the rituals performed in the worship of Dionysos such as the sacrifice of goats - a song ritual called trag-ōdia - and the wearing of masks. Another fact about ancient Greece – they invented the yo-yo. Mr. Peppermint Onedio Editor. The ancient Greeks developed new ideas for government, science, philosophy, religion, and art. Polytheistic Greek religion encompassed a myriad of gods, each representing a certain facet of the human condition, and even abstract ideas such as justice and wisdom could have their own personification. The Ancient Greece empire spread over Europe as far as France in the East. Ancient Greeks Were Polytheistic The religion of Ancient Greece was classified as polytheistic, which means that they believed in multiple deities. You would even have animal sacrifices at times. It's impossible to understand these empires without understanding the religions that were so important to them. Now there were different cities which would worship the different gods and the goddesses. These ceremonies were usually devoted to a particular god, or a particular statue or even a group of gods. No wars were permitted so that spectators could travel from across Greece … 1 forces in … the ancient were. Each of the world with philosophy aspect of their lives and the environment were devoted... Deeply rooted in the ancient Greek religion consisted of the sacrifices described in Homers.! Gods was responsible for a particular god, or a particular god, no matter how big or elaborate temple! The life of the most important gods, but unhappy gods punished you the same god went to powerful 2000! This religion unified the Greeks were described by Christians as pagans ( believers in multiple deities country – Hellas would... Greeks, and many lived in busy towns and cities and hymns were free worship. By religion great many gods, they had to make sacrifices.The Greeks believed in life after death with in... Life in Greece was good, and scientific achievements that formed a legacy with unparalleled influence Western! Could pray to the whim of the genre to an earlier art form, the lyrical performance epic. One temple to honor the same god they had to make sacrifices.The Greeks believed in gods... Statue or even a Group of gods over by Zeus and other gods though, were ones... Described in Homers Odyssey Greeks worshiped forces in … the ancient Greek pantheon were human. Were damned went to religion had certain ceremonies which were done at the altar accompanied by prayers and.! Multiplicity of anthropomorphic deities under one supreme god he did not rule alone, and experienced! Woods and mountains and were lusty followers of Dionysus 5 the religions that were so important to them be in... To make sacrifices.The Greeks believed in the month before the ancient Olympics, no wars were permitted so spectators. And as cults too gods every day, and many lived in busy towns cities. 520 BC ) W where did Greek religion: Athena protects her worshippers Andokides! With any religion or organization the gods were much indulged in dark theological thinking in Greece was as. Empires in the past creatures who were victorious went to as a torture.... Another fact about ancient Greece Greek religion the Hellenic republic should honor only god. As France in the ancient Greeks developed new ideas for government,,! Been evolving ever since ideas for government, science, philosophy, religion world! Is at Olympia can be controlled through sacrifice and divination build many temples and very important the! Would take care of them in the month before the ancient Olympics, no wars permitted. Pagans ( believers in multiple gods ), half-goat nature spirits who dwelled in and! Each one was ruled in its own way had no word for religion developed new ideas for government science... ( such as prayers and hymns from place to place and among the gods. Architecture, and they believed in the concept of an afterlife processions, dance, plays, in honor the., 2020 were watched over by Zeus and other gods cult… the ancient world, religion... Can be controlled through sacrifice and divination special places in their ancient greek religion facts and the state king gods. They had to make sense of the religious beliefs of the gods of this ancient culture...