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In Greek mythology, the nine Muses are goddesses of the various arts such as music, dance, and poetry and are blessed not only with wonderful artistic talents themselves but also with great beauty, grace, and allure. Their gifts of song, dance, and joy helped the gods and mankind to forget their troubles and inspired musicians and writers to reach ever greater... [continue reading]
Greece is a country in southeastern Europe, known in Greek as Hellas or Ellada, and consisting of a mainland and an archipelago of islands. Greece is the birthplace of Western philosophy (Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle), literature (Homer and Hesiod), mathematics (Pythagoras and Euclid), history (Herodotus), drama (Sophocles, Euripedes, and Aristophanes... [continue reading]
Cyprus is a large island located in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, east of Greece, south of Asia Minor, west of the Levant, and north of Egypt. The naming of the island is a matter of dispute amongst historians. One theory suggests that the large quantity of copper deposits on the island gave the name Cyprus, as copper has the Latin name of cuprum... [continue reading]
Canaan was the name of a large and prosperous country (at times independent, at others a tributary to Egypt) which corresponds roughly to present-day Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Israel and was also known as Phoenicia. The origin of the name `Canaan’ for the land comes from various ancient texts (among them the Hebrew Bible) and there is no scholarly consensus... [continue reading]
Mesopotamia (from the Greek, meaning 'between two rivers’) was an ancient region in the eastern Mediterranean bounded in the northeast by the Zagros Mountains and in the southeast by the Arabian Plateau, corresponding to today’s Iraq, mostly, but also parts of modern-day Iran, Syria and Turkey. The 'two rivers' of the name referred... [continue reading]