Greece Facts – The Ancient Greeks and Sponge Diving
Many things were discovered or invented in ancient Greece. For example, the Ancient Greeks invented democracy and the public toilet. They also discovered sea sponges. If you’re interested in the history of Greece, these facts are for you. Take a look below! You might be surprised by some of them! And don’t forget to share them with friends and family. Let’s start with the population of Greece. In 2016, 28 million tourists visited the country. There are plenty of reasons to visit the country.
Ancient Greeks invented and discovered many things
There are many things that the Ancient Greeks discovered and invented. Ctesibius of Alexandria was the first to invent the syringe, about 300 years before the Romans did. He also invented a water clock and a pipe organ. The syringe was similar to the modern syringe, though it was made from copper. Galen used a brass syringe in the 2nd century AD.
The early Greeks considered illness to be a punishment from God, but eventually began to think more scientifically about it. The Greeks began to recognize that diet, lifestyle, and constitution played a significant role in a patient’s health. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, published treatises and made discoveries based on observation. He was the first to observe the anatomy of a severely wounded soldier. He also noted differences between veins and arteries. The Greeks also began to study planetary science, which may have been first discovered by the ancient Greek philosopher Democritus.
They invented democracy
The history of the Greeks and their democracy began in Athens. The assembly decided on the military and financial magistracies, organised food supplies, and made decisions about legislation and treaties. It voted to ostracize dangerous citizens by writing their names on broken pottery. Later, democracy spread throughout Greece, and the assembly became the most influential political body. Its laws were well defined and its citizens enjoyed freedom of speech. Its first constitution enacted in 490 BCE provided more political rights for women than other European nations.
The Greeks’ democratic self-government was one of the most innovative developments in world history. Citizens of the ancient city-state of Athens had the right to vote, and these rights were limited. However, the democratization of the Athens government paved the way for democracy throughout Europe and the world. Greece was the first civilization to introduce democracy in its form. But it was only after centuries of epic poetry that the Greeks finally experimented with democracy.
They invented the public toilet
The ancient Greeks were among the first to make public toilets. They used a bowl set on a pedestal with several holes in it for washing. This bowl was used by both men and women. These public latrines were usually very well-organized, with benches perched over the flowing water. The benches were connected to a vast drainage system. The public latrines played a crucial role in daily life. Toilet paper was not invented until the Middle Ages, and the Greeks used a mixture of water and small stones for toilet paper.
The Greek plumbing system has come a long way from Minoan times, but the idea of the flush toilet was first introduced in 2000 B.C. at the Palace of Knossos. However, modern toilets don’t handle toilet paper. Modern toilets in Greece have double-button flushers, so a user can choose how much water they need. In other words, the modern toilet in Greece is designed for one use, but is perfectly functional.
They discovered sea sponges
The ancient Greeks were famous for their sponge diving, and it was even part of the Greek Olympic games. Sponge diving is considered dangerous, and sponge divers make up to four dives a day. It is not recommended for novice divers to go deeper than 40 meters or 130 feet. There is also a dark history behind the sport, so only the most experienced divers should undertake it. Still, it is an interesting way to learn about the history of the sea sponge.
Sponge fishing was a lucrative industry for the Greeks, but they faced a serious problem. After the establishment of the state of Turkey in 1924, foreigners were banned from taking part in sponge fishing. However, some Greek captains decided to take Turks on board their ships and teach them how to gather sponges. In the 1930s, a Turk decided to visit the Island of Hydra, just a few miles off Turkey. He returned six to fifteen tonnes of sponges a day.
They invented the vasilopita
The vasilopita is a traditional Greek cake made from eggs, milk, and flour. It is similar to a pound cake. It is often paired with wine and is served for special occasions. The word vasilopita is derived from the Greek name Chronopita, which means “New Year pie.”
The tradition of making a vasilopita began in ancient Greece. It was traditionally topped with a coin, usually a silver or gold plated coin. It was a way to remember the previous year, as well as to give thanks for the blessings received. Traditionally, the coin would contain a symbol or sign. The coins were used as lucky charms. This custom is still followed today.