| Stories of the Ancient Greeks|
|by Charles D. Shaw|
|Delightful collection of both mythological and historical stories of the ancient Greeks, in language simple enough for younger listeners, yet appealing to all ages. Provides an excellent introduction to ancient Greece, beginning with 32 of the best-known myths, and then continuing with 32 short stories of the historical era, arranged in chronological order. An extensive pronunciation guide is included. Ages 8-11 |
THE THREE ORDERS OF ARCHITECTURE
ARLY men, who lived long before the Greeks, made their homes in caves.
These men were hunters and perhaps fishermen. When they learned to cultivate
the soil, and so had become farmers, they found out how to make dwellings of
branches of trees woven together, or of dried sods piled up to form a rude
Men who lived by the milk and flesh of flocks of sheep and goats needed
light dwellings which they could easily carry about. They learned to sew
together the skins of animals and thus to make tents, which were moved from
place to place as the flocks moved.
In rocky countries where loose stones were plenty the inhabitants learned to
build huts by piling stones together, so making a kind of artificial cave.
People who lived on wide plains where there were no rocks, learned to make
bricks of clay. At first these bricks were dried in the sun, as they still
are in some countries. Later the art of baking them in a kiln was
Men who lived in forests built their huts first of wattled or interwoven
branches, then of logs. The Greeks were always stone builders. They began by
using large, rough blocks rudely fitted together. Then they chiseled the
blocks into irregular forms. At last they cut the
 stones into six-sided blocks and laid them up in regular courses.
We can see that the love of order and beauty was growing in the minds of the
Greeks. They did not try to imitate the buildings they had seen in other
countries, but developed styles of their own.
The first style we should naturally expect to be plain and simple. This was
called the Doric order. Perhaps it arose from imitating the rude log temples
of an older time in an earlier settled country when the columns, or pillars,
of temples were made of logs. It was said, however, that these Doric pillars
were modeled after a man's figure, being six times as high as they were
thick, just as a man is about six times as tall as his foot is long.
The Ionians, another tribe of the Greeks, were building a temple to Artemis,
and wished to find some new and beautiful way. So they made a column like a
woman; that is, more slender than a man. At the base they put twisted cords
like a woman's sandals; and the top, or
 capital, they curled over, like a woman's hair on each side of her face.
This style was called the Ionic order. At Corinth a young girl died. A
basket of flowers was placed on her grave, and upon it a tile was laid to
keep it from being blown over. This pressed the flowers down and made them
Curl over the sides of the basket.
An architect, who was walking cemetery, saw this and thought it would make a
beautiful capital, or top, for a pillar. He had the design carved in stone
and used it in the next temple he built. This style is called the Corinthian
Many modern buildings show one or other of these three orders. The
Corinthian is the favorite, because it is considered most graceful and
The temple of the Parthenon at Athens was of the Doric order, and was one of
the finest buildings in the world. When it was built the Corinthian order
The Greeks used very fine white marble for their statues and buildings.
Often they ornamented them with color and with gold. This added to their
beauty, and beauty was what the Grecians dearly loved.
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