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Civilization Past and Present10

 

The Hellenistic Contribution

 

The greatest contribution of the Hellenistic Age was the diffusion of Greek culture throughout the ancient East and the newly rising Roman west. In the East, the cities that Alexander and his successors built were the agents for spreading Hellenistic culture from the Aegean Sea to India. Literate Asians learned Greek to facilitate trade and to read Creek literature. In Judea, upper-class Jews built Greek theaters and gymnasiums and adopted Greek speech, dress, and names.

 

古今文明 (10

 

希腊化的贡献

 

希腊化时代最伟大的贡献是希腊文化在古代东方和新崛起的罗马西方世界的广泛传播。在东方,亚历山大及其继任者建立的城市成为把希腊化文化从爱琴海传播到印度的代理人。有文化的亚洲人学习希腊语以加快贸易并阅读希腊文学作品。在 犹太上层阶级建立了希腊剧院和运动场并采用了希腊的语言、服装和姓名。

 

For a time the Seleucid Empire provided the peace and economic stability necessary to ensure the partial Helllenization of a vast area. But with an insufficient number of Greeks to colonize so large an area as the Near East, the Greek cities remained only islands in an Asian ocean. As time passed, this ocean encroached more and more on the Hellenized outposts.

 

有一段时间,塞琉西帝国提供的和平和经济稳定,对保证一片巨大区域的部分希腊化是必需的。但是,要想让人数不够的希腊人把近东那样如此巨大的地区殖民化,希腊城市就如同点缀在亚洲汪洋大海中的小岛。随着时间的流逝,这片大海侵占了越来越多的希腊化的边远村落。

 

The gradual weakening of the loosely knit Seleucid Empire eventually resulted in the creation independent kingdoms on the edge of the Hellenistic world. In the middle of the third century, a nomad chieftain founded the kingdom of Parthia, situated between the Seleucid and Bactrian kingdoms. Claiming to be the heirs of the more ancient Persians, the Parthians expanded until by 130 B.C.E. they had wrested Babylonia from the Seleucids. although Parthia was essentially a native Iranian state, its inhabitants absorbed some Hellenistic culture.

 

松散组成的塞留西帝国的逐渐衰落最终引起希腊化世界边缘地区独立王国的创建。三世纪中期,一个游牧民族的首领建立了帕提亚王国,它位于塞留西和巴克特里亚王国之间。声称自己是更古老的波斯人的继承者,帕提亚人在公元前130之前一直进行扩张。他们从塞留西人手中夺走巴比伦。 虽然帕提亚本质上是土著的伊朗人国家, 它的居民吸收了某些希腊化文化。

 

Cut off from the Seleucid rule by the Parthian kingdom, Bactria also became independent. Its Greek rulers, descendants of Alexander's veterans, controlled the caravan route to India and issued some of the most beautiful Greek coins. In 183 B.C.E., the Bactrians crossed into India and conquered the province of Ganhara. One result of the conquest was a strong Greek influence on Indian art.

 

通过帕提亚王国摆脱塞留西统治,巴克特里亚也独立了。它的希腊统治者,即亚历山大老兵的后代,控制了通往印度的商路,并且发行了一些最美丽的希腊钱币。公元前183年,巴克特里亚人越过进入印度 并且征服了甘哈拉省。这次征服的一个后果,就是希腊文化对印度艺术产生了强烈影响。

 

In the history of Western   civilization, there is little of greater significance than Rome's absorption of Greek civilization and its transference of that heritage to later European culture. The stage on which this story began was the cosmopolitan Hellenistic Age, which "longed and strove for Homonoia, Concord between man and man ....[and] proclaimed a conception of the world as One Great City."

 

在西方文明史上,很少有哪个事件比起罗马对希腊文明的吸收并把这一遗产传承到后来的欧洲文化中这件事更有意义。这段故事开始的舞台就是世界性的希腊化时代。这个时代“渴望并为Homonoia--人与人之间的和谐--而奋斗……[并且]宣布世界是同一个大城市这一概念。

 

    
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