1. To what extent did geography encourage Greeks to venture into the Mediterranean Sea?
Greece is located in southeastern Europe. Its peninsula extends from the Balkans all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. Greece is a mountainous country and most of her land is rocky. Mountains cover roughly 70 t0 80 percent of Greece. Due to these factors, there was very little land for agriculture. The food produced by this small cultivated land was not enough to feed the entire population of the Greek people and there for there was need to look for other means of living. Being surrounded by the sea they ventured into it. They started trading with other countries. Greek had a number of bays along it shoreline hence encouraged trading very much. The country had skilled sailors who were able to sail to other countries and exchange olive, oil, wine and marble for grains, metal and ideas. Due to poor land for agriculture most of the Greeks turned into fishing as a source of food and income which nourished in the sea.
2. In what ways did the colonies serve as links between Greece and the larger Mediterranean region?
Greek colonies arose in the eastern Mediterranean and the black sea. Many Greeks projected into the Black Sea building colonies all along its shores. The colonies made it easier for merchants to access rich supplies of grains, fish, furs, timber, honey, wax, gold and amber. The colonies also received slaves from other parts of the sea and took them into markets both in Greece and to Aegean Sea and Anatolia. Establishment of Greek colonies in other parts of the Mediterranean Sea created links to Greece as those colonies captured slave and transported them to Greece to work there.
3. How does Socrates’ understanding of personal morality and its rewards compare and contrast with the Zoroastrian, Buddhist, and Hindu views discussed in earlier chapters? Explain in detail.
All these religions believe that one’s behavior leads to one’s prosperity or failure for example the Hindu believe in four purposes for living and one of them is prosperity. The Socrates also as the Hindu insisted on the need to reflect on the purpose of living and life’s achievements. These religions also taught on the need to be honest and just to others. The Socrates ague that human beings are capable of leading honest lives, on the same point of honesty the Buddha believe that if a merchant stays honest to his/her customers then he will also receive honest customers.
Both believe that fortune of one’s life depends on the persons conduct. If a person practices good moral, the god will reward the person with good. They all associated suffering as a punishment for bad morals. The Buddha trusts that all sorts of suffering are caused by ignorance of reality and worldly attachments. The same the Socrates believe that if one does not work towards a just society then the consequences will be suffering. Similarly the Zoroastrian attribute suffering, happiness and grief to ones moral behavior.
On the contrary, for the Socrates honor was much more important than riches, fame and other superficial attributes such as kingships while all these other religions believed that leaders were always honorable. The Socrates agued that humans had an obligation to work had for integrity but the others knew that integrity came from their gods.
4. In what ways did Roman expansion encourage interactions and exchanges throughout the Mediterranean region?
Roman dominated the entire Mediterranean basin after defeating the Carthage colony. The Romans then spread eastwards taking Greece. The interactions between the Romans and Greek people led to exchange of culture. The coastal trading cultures were spread into inland river valleys thus encouraged further interactions among the Romans and the Mediterranean people. The Italians then dominated trade from the east to Europe and used mediation, which influenced interactions and good exchange of both goods and culture. The Romans facilitated trade across Mesopotamian region, Egypt, Phoenicia, Greek and Macedonia. The Romans also constructed roads and canals that further improved interactions around the Mediterranean region.
5. How important was the Romans’ extensive road network for the maintenance of their enormous empire?
The extensive network of roads helped the Roman to maintain their territories using strong military that was on sight all the time. The roads made it easier for the soldiers to move even to marginalized territories with ease much faster thus ensured maximum security was maintained. Firm paved roads minimized the stress of impassable roads during the wet season. Road linked their numerous empires together thus when there was an alarm from of an attack on one of their empires, it was easier and faster to release military from other camps to go and provide support thus made it had for their enemies to attack them.
The network of roads facilitated trade within and across the empire thus the government was able to obtain tax from the traders that they used to manage the empires. These roads also made it easier and faster for couriers to deliver the emperor’s message to the sub-branches. There were also post houses located ten to fifteen miles apart where the military changed horses.