National Geographic : 1897 Feb
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY Two phases of Phoenician civilization, represented by Sidon and Tyre. In the west, we can trace the former by the deities Poseidon (i. e., Baal Sidon) and Amphitrite (i. e., Aphrodite); the latter Herakls (Melcarth) and Pallas (i. e ., Baalat) Athenat. The quarrel between Poseidon and Pallas : the Parthenon group. The Olympia metopes. The extent of the Phoenician trade, and its effect upon the countries visited. They double the Cape of Good Hope. The Phoenician colo nies, Carthage, etc., and their civilization: its strength and weakness. Want of idealism and political sense. The dangers of a merely industrial civilization. Why Carthage succumbed to Rome. The world's debt to Phoenicia, as an example of industrial, enterprise, unrelieved by art, literature, or science. March 29. Greece, by Professor BENJAMIN IDE WHEELER, LL. D ., of Cornell University. Greece: how its geography explains its history. Its position. The outpost of Europe; though removed from it by its peninsular form, not severed from connection with it. Greek ideas are representative occidental ideas. The contrast of occidentalism and orien talism. Joined to Asia by a bridge of islands and by the navigable JEgean. Hence open to the reception of eastern ideas and motives, but secured in its capability of assimilating them. The extent and nature of eastern influence. Surrounded by the Mediterranean, hence a distribut ing medium. Its primacy in Mediterranean civilization. Relations of this civilization to modern European civilization. Its geography. The irregularity of its coastline. Proximity of all its parts to the sea. Abundance of sheltered beach-harbors. Absence of great rivers. Contrast with the great river civilization of Egypt and Mesopotamia. Partition into districts by mountains. Features of moun tain chains: not impassable barriers. Plains of limited size: these en courage particularism and a consciousness of the power of individual initiative. Plains mostly accessible to the sea. Communication by sea rather than by land encouraged. Opened outward rather than inward, motive to union lessened. Variety in relative location of the plains pro ductive of variety in conditions of life, and hence of social and political ideas. Greece a mosaic. The islands so numerous as to set a standard of political and material existence. Extension of the analogy to the Athens of Themistocles and Pericles. Citadels treated as islands. Its size and the distances between its ports. Superficial area. Distance between important points. Routes and methods of communication. Effect of dimensions upon the Greek sense of proportion and upon the stimulation of individual energy. Climate and products. Temperature and contrast of seasons. Outdoor life. Sociability. Democracy. Interest in athletics. Winds. Effect on commerce. Rainfall and fertility. Products of soil. Bent toward com merce rather than agriculture. Urban life and attitude toward farmers. Important sites. Cities: Sparta, Thebes, Corinth, Athens, and their geographical characteristics. Battlefields : Marathon, Mantinea, Chsero nea, Salamis. Festal places: Olympia, Delphi. Impressions of Greek scenery.