Pericles Funeral Oration: Unique Qualities Of The Athenian

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Pericles’ Funeral Oration Fifth century emerged as a period of great influx of culture, and democracy. However, Athens also witnessed a lot of warfare and repression. Pericles was a great ruler and responsible for many of developments of Athens during the Golden Age. He was a leader and champion of democracy and also became a statesman, an orator and a general in the military. Pericles also made a lot of culture in Athens possible. He was looked highly upon, and wanted the best for the Polis. This reading comes from Pericles Funeral Oration, a speech delivered to the Athenian Public relating the unique qualities of the Athenians, and redefines Greek virtues. Pericles delivered this speech in 431 BCE, recently after the Peloponnesian War broke loose. By giving the speech he wanted to pay homage to the troops who had perished, and he wanted to inspire those who remained in battle.…show more content…
The idea that Athenians could put away their insignificant wants and strive for the greater good of Athens is the central theme of this speech. Citizens wanted to continue to have freedom and not be bound by dictatorship. This allowed people to be tolerant and open minded. Athens had a participatory government, which means that every person (not including women or slaves) was allowed to have a say and make decisions for the polis. Pericles believed that “freedom which we enjoy our government extends to our ordinary life,” (2) stating that the responsibility of government goes beyond, to each persons everyday life. He is also stating that Athens, unlike many of the neighbors in the Mediterranean, had a unique system that not only shapes political views, but social as

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