Hellenic and Hellenistic Culture

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Hellenic and Hellenistic Culture
There are significant distinctions between the Greeks and people from other
ethnicities who speak the Greek language. Hellenic culture refers to the Greeks’ way of
life while Hellenistic customs refer to the manner in which the people who speak the
Greek language yet from other ethnic backgrounds live. The two groups differ in
philosophy, religion, science, and art and it is imperative to examine these variations.
The Hellenic and Hellenistic cultures exhibit critical distinctions in philosophy.
The Greek period was characterized by the upcoming of the philosophers who attracted a
large following (Sanneh 67). It was during this time that many philosophies came into
existence. For instance, Plato's Republic is an excellent perception of political philosophy
in the Hellenic period. On the other hand, the Hellenistic culture focuses more on
reasoning than establishing the truth. The philosophers in the Hellenistic culture applied
critical thinking as a means of solving their routine problems. Such individuals were
cynical and skeptical to the Greek philosophies and argued that the truth comes with
The Hellenic displayed a unique culture in religion from the Hellenistic. The
Greeks derived their religion from increased debates among the philosophers who
questioned the existence of gods (Sanneh 69). The Hellenic culture’s focus was on
establishing the significance of the Ancient Greek Pantheon of gods. During this time, the 
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Greeks were keen on doubting their existence and personality. On the other hand, the
development of religion was a significant phenomenon during the Hellenistic era. Many
cult organizations emerged during this period. The Hellenistic believed in
Zoroastrianism. These people had faith in Ahura-Mazda as the only god worshiped
during that time. The Hellenistic culture also believed in intercession through prayers.
There were also differences in sciences during the Hellenic and Hellenistic times.
Many world-renowned scientists and theories characterize the Hellenic period. For
instance, the field of astronomy was common among the Greeks. In addition, the Hellenic
culture witnessed the Pythagorean and Aristotle era. Aristotle made enormous
advancement in metaphysics while Thales predicted the solar eclipse. This era was
marked by increased knowledge of science and inventions (Ehrenberg 19). On the other
hand, the Hellenistic science is developed from the Hellenic science that focused on
improving on the science that was invented during the Hellenic period. For instance,
Hellenistic science made significant advancement in medicine that led to the description
of the brain and how it works.
The Hellenic and Hellenistic arts varied significantly. The Greek art comprised of
sensuality and exuberance (Shank 56). The Hellenic period made a critical contribution to
the modern architecture and design. This period marked the beginning of the Ionic and
Doric columns that formed the foundations of construction of the architectural structures.
On the other hand, the Hellenistic culture was characterized by imitations of the Hellenic
architectural science. There was a paradigm shift from the Greek Art to what came to be
known as “trash art.” However, the contributions of the Hellenistic in architecture cannot
be underestimated following their improvement of the ancient Greek architecture. 
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As illustrated in the discussion, the Hellenistic and Hellenic cultures differed
significantly in philosophy, religion, science, and art. The Hellenic period marked the
beginning of civilization that later spread to other parts of the world. The Hellenistic
culture developed from the Greek people although they later advanced it. The two groups
were committed to excellence and improvement of their lives through science and
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Works Cited
Ehrenberg, Victor. The Greek State (Routledge Library Editions: Political Science. Vol.
23. New York: Routledge, 2013. Print.
Sanneh, Lamin. Translating the message: The missionary impact on culture. Ossining:
Orbis Books, 2015. Print
Shank, Derek. “The Aesthetics of Romantic Hellenism.” Diss. The University of Western
Ontario, 2015. Print. 

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