4th Edition

The Greeks An Introduction to Their Culture

By Robin Sowerby, Brad Cook Copyright 2025
    360 Pages 126 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    360 Pages 126 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This fully revised new edition of The Greeks is a concise but wide-ranging introduction to the culture of ancient Greece, providing a comprehensive survey that covers all the key elements of ancient Greek civilization from the age of Homer to the Hellenistic period.

    It opens with an overview of ancient historical sources and their authors and perspectives before delving into early history, legends and excavations, and the famed age of Classical Greece. Chapters follow on politics, religion, daily life, literature, philosophy, and art and architecture, with a concluding chapter on the Greek world following the death of Alexander the Great and during the Roman era. This new edition features:

    • greater discussion of underrepresented groups, especially women and slaves
    • a chapter on ancient politics that provides a comparison of an ancient aristocracy, democracy, and monarchy in Sparta, Athens, and Macedon
    • new and revised images, all now with detailed captions to merge the artifacts and texts more fully and bring the narrative to life for every reader
    • new translations of all ancient passages revised for accuracy and clarity.

    Clearly written with generous references to original source material, The Greeks places ancient Greek culture firmly in its political, social, and historical context.

    The fourth edition of The Greeks remains an invaluable introduction for all students of Classics, and an indispensable guide for students of other disciplines who require grounding in ancient Greek civilization and history.

    1. Introduction: defining Greeks & ancient sources; 2. Beginnings: early Greece, Homer & Hesiod; 3. History: Archaic & classical; 4. Politics: Sparta, Athens, & Macedon; 5. Religion: honoring gods, cities, & mortals; 6. Daily life: community & self; 7. Literature: from Sappho to Hyperides; 8. Philosophy & science: seeking to know; 9. Art & architecture: constructing images; 10. Hellenistic culture: from antiquity on; Appendix 1, Chronological Table; Appendix 2, Glossary. 


    Robin Sowerby was Senior Lecturer in English Studies at the University of Stirling, Scotland. Trained as a classicist, his research interests centre upon the Classical tradition. He has written introductory studies of the major Classical epics and is author of Early Augustan Virgil (2010), The Augustan Art of Poetry (2006) and The Classical Legacy in Renaissance Poetry (1994).

    Brad Cook is a Professor of Classics at the University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi, and has written on the lives and legends of the Athenian orator Demosthenes, the Roman orator Cicero, Philip II of Macedon, Alexander the Great, on ancient inscriptions and medieval manuscripts.