Pericles

Pericles (Greek: Περικλῆς, Periklēs, "surrounded by glory"; c. 495 – 429 BC) was a prominent and influential Greek statesman, orator, and general of Athens during the city's Golden Age—specifically, the time between the Persian and Peloponnesian wars. He was descended, through his mother, from the powerful and historically influential Alcmaeonid family.

Pericles had such a profound influence on Athenian society that Thucydides, his contemporary historian, acclaimed him as "the first citizen of Athens". Pericles turned the Delian League into an Athenian empire and led his countrymen during the first two years of the Peloponnesian War. The period during which he led Athens, roughly from 461 to 429 BC, is sometimes known as the "Age of Pericles", though the period thus denoted can include times as early as the Persian Wars, or as late as the next century.

Pericles promoted the arts and literature; it is principally through his efforts that Athens holds the reputation of being the educational and cultural center of the ancient Greek world. He started an ambitious project that generated most of the surviving structures on the Acropolis (including the Parthenon). This project beautified the city, exhibited its glory, and gave work to the people. Pericles also fostered Athenian democracy to such an extent that critics call him a populist.

Read more about Pericles:  Early Years, Peloponnesian War, Personal Life, Assessments

Other articles related to "pericles":

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Thucydides, Son Of Melesias - Life and Political Career
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Famous quotes containing the word pericles:

    In history the great moment is, when the savage is just ceasing to be a savage, with all his hairy Pelasgic strength directed on his opening sense of beauty;—and you have Pericles and Phidias,—and not yet passed over into the Corinthian civility. Everything good in nature and in the world is in that moment of transition, when the swarthy juices still flow plentifully from nature, but their astrigency or acridity is got out by ethics and humanity.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)