This is a survey of the world of classical Greece, its origins and legacy. The book comprises nineteen chapters, written by leading scholars from around the world. It covers all the major themes of Ancient Greek history, set in the context of both the preceding and following periods. The book is organised into four main sections. It opens with discussions of the natural environment of the Greek peninsula and the surrounding islands. The second section then examines the history of the peoples of Greece up to the end of antiquity. It moves from the prehistoric and protohistoric periods, through the era of Bronze Age palace societies - including those of Knossos and Mycenae - surveying the thousand and more years until the transfer of the Roman imperial court from Rome to Constantinople.The third and longest part of the book deals with different aspects of the classical period, to give a kaleidoscopic picture of the most important elements in Greek life: the country, politics, religion, the spoken and written word, philosophy, art, craftsmanship and social behaviour. Finally, the book surveys the legacy of classical Greece, assessing its impact for western civilisation as a whole.
The book is highly illustrated with over 100 plates and maps, and includes a timeline and guides for further reading. It is designed to be an ideal introduction to the subject for students and general readers alike.