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The Western Tradition
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1.

The Dawn of History [electronic resource]

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The origins of the human race are traced from its anthropoid ancestors to the agricultural revolution, looking at the evolution of tool use, and class structure and the role of religion. Featured images include statues of the fertility goddesses, The Venus of Laussel and The Venus of Willendorf.
Online
1989
2.

The Ancient Egyptians [electronic resource]

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In the Fertile Crescent, water from the Tigris, Euphrates, and Nile rivers gave birth to advanced irrigation systems that allowed ancient Egypt to flourish. Pharaohs' tombs in Sakkara and Giza reveal Egyptian mythology.
Online
1989
3.

Mesopotamia [electronic resource]

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The geography of Mesopotamia led its people to make great advances in astronomy, mathematics, time-keeping, written laws, currency and weights and measures. Weber introduces religious and secular leaders of Ur, Lagash, Akkad, and Babylon and discusses their depictions in sculptural reliefs.
Online
1989
4.

From Bronze to Iron [electronic resource]

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Metals revolutionized not only tools, but whole societies as well in the empires of Assyria, Persia and Neo-Babylonia. Aramaic became the common language of the Near East during the war-ridden Iron Age.
Online
1989
5.

The Rise of Greek Civilization [electronic resource]

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Democracy and philosophy arose from a collection of Greek cities at the edge of the civilized world. Weber discusses the Iliad, the Odyssey and the "polis", all central to Greek life, social organization, and thought. The Parthenon and the sculptures of Praxieteles are mentioned.
Online
1989
6.

Greek Thought [electronic resource]

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Socrates, Plato and Aristotle lay the foundations of Western intellectual thought during a period also influenced by ideas of the Sophists. The Peloponnesian War brought changes in the Greek city-state.
Online
1989
7.

Alexander the Great [electronic resource]

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Alexander the Great's conquests quadrupled the size of the world known to the Greeks. The factors contributing to his rise to power and how the great leader chose to have himself portrayed in commemorative sculptures are discussed. Paintings in the House of Faun in Pompeii teach about the conqueror's life and times.
Online
1989
8.

The Hellenistic Age [electronic resource]

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Hellenistic kingdoms extended Greek culture throughout the Mediterranean, giving more emphasis to the individual. The ideas of the popular mystery cults of Isis, Serapis and Mithras, and the philosophical teachings of Cynicism, Stoicism and Epicureanism were unveiled.
Online
1989
9.

The Rise of Rome [electronic resource]

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Rome's army and its military history defined the city that conquered Macedonia, Greece and Egypt and transformed its society. Villas, aqueducts and a portrait bust of Scipio Africanus are featured.
Online
1989
10.

The Roman Empire [electronic resource]

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Rome's civil engineering was as important to the Empire's success as its weapons. A close examination of Trajan's Column, the Arch of Septimius Severus and the Arch of Constantine reveals important details of Roman history. Augustus and the Pax Romana are also discussed.
Online
1989
11.

Early Christianity [electronic resource]

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In the first centuries A.D., barbarian attacks and other factors made the Roman Empire increasingly unstable. People rejected Greco-Roman rationalism and turned toward Mithraism, Judaism, and an emerging Christianity. Concurrently, an increasingly insecure society produced art objects to ward off witches and demons.
Online
1989
12.

The Rise of the Church [electronic resource]

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Christianity continued many beliefs of earlier cults and broke with Judaism to become the official religion of the Roman Empire under Emperor Constantine. Featured images include the Arch of Titus, art of the catacombs, the good shepherd motif and visions of the Apocalypse.
Online
1989
13.

The Decline of Rome [electronic resource]

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Barbarians, malaria, Christianity and over-extension all played a part in Rome's decline. Weber explores urban life in Rome's cities, focusing on public entertainment and the lavish lifestyle of Rome's rulers. Featured images include circuses and gladiatorial contests, and paintings of architecture of Pompeii and Herculaneum.
Online
1989
14.

The Fall of Rome [electronic resource]

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Despite the reign of successful emperors such as Hadrian and Marcus Aurelius, Rome fell victim to despotism and barbarian invasions. New institutions like the manorial system, developed as the Roman Empire drew to a close.
Online
1989
15.

The Byzantine Empire [electronic resource]

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How and why did the eastern half of the Roman empire survive? The reasons for Constantinople's success under the Emperor Constantine, Justinian and others, and how the traditios of Greece and Rome were carried on are explored. Byzantine art is examined to discover the relationship between political leaders and divinities and to understand the role holy images played in battle.
Online
1989
16.

The Fall of Byzantium [electronic resource]

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A thousand years after the fall of Rome, Islam conquered Constantinople and Islam's language, Arabic, spread through the known world. Santa Sophia, the great monument of Christendom, which influenced the Moslem mosque of Mohammed Ali in Cairo, is featured.
Online
1989
17.

The Dark Ages [electronic resource]

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Barbarian kingdoms of the Franks, Burgundians, Visigoths, Lombards, Angles and Saxons, converted to Christianity. Saints became essential figures in adopting the new religion and monasteries protected and nurtured ancient traditions of learning. Images of judgment, scenes from the lives of the saints, and reliquaries provide important information about the tenor of the times.
Online
1989
18.

The Age of Charlemagne [electronic resource]

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The invention of the horseshoe, the crank, the grindstone and the heavy-wheeled plow led to increased food production and shifted economic power to northern Europe. Charlemagne was helped by the use of newfangled stirrups and increased grain supplies. His reign led to flourishing monasteries and masterpieces of Carolingian art.
Online
1989
19.

The Middle Ages [electronic resource]

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How many oxen is a helmet worth? The implications of this question are studied in the violent era of lords and vassals, as a military aristocracy dominated the kingdoms of Europe. Working the land dominated the yearly rhythms and art of peasant, clergy, knight and lord.
Online
1989
20.

The Feudal Order [electronic resource]

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The year 1000 A.D. marked a turning point in Europe. Weber discusses the three estates: clergy, nobles and peasants. The Magna Carta and the Crusades show important changes of the period, and grand new cathedrals demonstrate the Church's growing wealth and importance.
Online
1989