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Monday, January 1 2018

The Greek Empire: Between The Testaments

"Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy, and the most aggravated form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme liberty"
Plato (428-348 BC), one of the Greek "Fathers of Democracy"

The English-language word "Greece" originated from the Latin name Graecia which to the foreigner Romans meant "the land of the Greeks." To "Greeks" themselves, the ancient name for their country is Hellas or Ellada (as pronounced in English). It is officially known today as the Hellenic Republic.

"Greece" is one of the most-ancient nations (i.e. families - the patriarch of a people was the leader of his kin, from which the word king originated; "patriotism" literally meant faithful to the father, the king) of humanity. Beginning from the "Greek Dark Ages" of about 1200 BC, Greek civilization developed and spread across the Mediterranean and the "world."

"Democracy," from the Greek word meaning rule by the people, originated in ancient Greece (see the Fact Finder question below).


The Old Testament record ends during the era of the Persian Empire (see also The Empires Of Bible History And Prophecy) when the people of Judah began their return from their Babylonian exile (see The Prophecies Of Cyrus of Persia). The New Testament begins at the time of the beginning of the Roman Empire (see The Roman Emperors: Julius Caesar and The Roman Emperors: Augustus).

The Greek Empire reached its peak between the fall of the Persian Empire (which the Greeks under Alexander the Great defeated) and the rise of the Roman Empire (which defeated the remnants of the Greek Empire in the time of Cleopatra). There is therefore an approximate 300 year space between the end of the Old Testament record and the beginning of the New Testament record.

Although the Greek Empire grew and declined during that gap period, the Holy Bible nevertheless has very much to say about the Greek Empire. Alexander the Great was described in amazing detail to the prophet Daniel before Alexander was even born. The infamous "abomination of desolation" was committed by a Greek king. And although gone by the time of its beginning, the New Testament itself was recorded in Greek.

All of that and much more will be dealt with in detail by this study series about the Greek Empire.

Fact Finder: What did an ancient Greek founder of democracy warn about the self-destructive dangers of democracy?
See What Did A Father Of Democracy Predict About It?; see also Why Are Politicians Called Left Or Right? and When Do Liberals Become Conservatives?

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This Day In History, January 1

45 BC: The Julian calendar, named after Julius Caesar (see The Roman Emperors: Julius Caesar), began to be used for the first time.

Julius Caesar

42 BC: The Roman Senate posthumously deified Julius Caesar - an irony and/or a hypocrisy, considering that he had been assassinated by Roman Senators in the Senate itself (see The Politics Of Rome; also What Did A Father Of Democracy Predict About It?).

Julius Caesar

69: Roman legions in Germania Superior rejected loyalty to Galba (see The Roman Emperors: Galba) and proclaimed Aulus Vitellius Germanicus as emperor (see The Roman Emperors: Vitellius).



193: The accession of Pertinax, the 19th Roman emperor (see also Why Are Politicians Called Left Or Right?).

990: Russia adopted Rome's "Julian" Calendar.

1500: Portuguese explorers landed on the coast of South America; they named the place Rio de Janeiro ("River of January").

1515: King Louis XII of France (1498-1515) died at age 52. Francis, Duke of Angouleme, succeeded Louis as Francis I.

1583: Rome's Gregorian Calendar was adopted in Belgium (see Pope Gregory's Calendar).

1651: Charles II, son of Charles I, was crowned king of Scotland.

1773: In Olney, England, the hymn "Amazing Grace" was first played, by John Newton.

1785: London's oldest newspaper, The Times, began publishing as the Daily Universal Register.

1801: The Act of Union of England, Scotland and Ireland formed the United Kingdom.


1804: After leading a rebellion against the French colonial forces, Jean-Jacques Dessalines declared Haiti independent of France.

1833: Britain claimed sovereignty over the Falkland Islands.

1863: Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation that formally freed all slaves in the U.S.

1871: While German armies besieged Paris, a new German Reich, with the king of Prussia, Wilhelm, as its inaugural emperor, was proclaimed in the Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versailles.

1877: Queen Victoria of England was proclaimed empress of India.

Queen Victoria

1894: The Manchester Ship Canal in England began operation.

1901: The Commonwealth of Australia began with Edmond Barton as its first Prime Minister.

1912: China became a republic following the Wuchang Uprising (see also The First Chinese American War).

1915: During the First World War (1914-1918), the German submarine U-24 sank the British battleship Formidable in the English Channel, near Plymouth.

1925: The capital city of Norway, known as Christiana since 1674, resumed its name of Oslo.

1934: Alcatraz became a U.S. Federal prison. The U.S. today (2018) has the highest civilian incarceration rate in the world, with 737 U.S. citizens in every 100,000 behind bars; the U.S. has less than 5% of the world population, but its citizens compose 25% of the world's incarcerated (apart from the many military and political prisons and "interrogation centers" that are operated by the U.S. military and CIA around the world).

Concentration camp

1946: Emperor Hirohito of Japan announced that he was not a god.

1947: The Canadian Citizenship Act 1946 came into effect, thereby converting British subjects into Canadian citizens. Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King became the first Canadian citizen.

1950: In sovereign defiance to United Nations and Vatican pressure to make Jerusalem an "international city," nearly the entire Israeli government was transferred from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah).

1956: Sudan gained independence from Britain and Egypt.

1958: The 1957 Treaty of Rome took effect, establishing a six-nation European Economic Community among West Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg.

1959: Cuban communist forces under Fidel Castro overthrew the CIA and Mafia-backed (the Cuba scenes in the Godfather movies are historically correct) regime of Fulgencio Batista and took control of the government of Cuba. The people of Cuba went from being ruled by a fascist dictator to being ruled by a communist dictator (see also When Do Liberals Become Conservatives?).

1973: Britain, Ireland and Denmark entered the European Economic Community, now called the European Union.

1975: During the "Watergate" criminal investigations, John Ehrlichman (Counsel and Assistant to the President), John Mitchell (United States Attorney General) and H.R. Haldeman (White House Chief of Staff) were found guilty of conspiracy, obstruction of justice and perjury (see also The Impeachment Of The President).

1981: Greece was admitted as the 10th member of the European Economic Community.

1992: Boutros Boutros Ghali of Egypt succeeded Javier Perez de Cuellar of Peru as United Nations Secretary General.

1993: Independent Czech and Slovak Republics were established from the former Czechoslovakia.


Copyright © Wayne Blank