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Contributors to the Arts

Both the Greeks and the Romans were humanists, meaning they valued the human and what could be accomplished with their minds and bodies.

One of Ancient Greece’s most significant contributions to the arts was the introduction of the public theatre. First created as a festival for honouring their god Dionysia, these theatrical displays are the first of what we now consider “theatre”. In these festivals, three sponsored playwrights would compete against one another, not for monetary prizes, but instead for the glory of winning. Just like plays still do today, Greek plays gave time for personal insight on what it means to be human, through the shared experience of the characters in the play.

Roman art was heavily influenced by the Greeks, however the Romans often focused on realism through their display of everyday people and common life. Additionally, the Romans played a significant role in making art available to people of all classes. Sculptures, often being what the Romans are most famous for, began to be seen in both public and private areas. For those who couldn’t afford to own art, they could still view public art galleries. Roman art was for anyone and everyone.

Through the Greeks and Romans, art began to weave its way into everyone’s everyday life.

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