Ancient Egyptian and Ancient Greek’s Comparison

Use of Geometry


The use of geometry in Egyptian art, the striding figure, is less emphasized in the fact that symmetry is not used to portray the balance of features in both the right and the left sides. The angular edges of the joints and limps represent more of arcs than corners and sharp bends. In this case, it is deductive that the use of geometry is minimal because the art does not focus on the balance of opposing sides. If geometry is to be applied in this case to investigate the use of proportions that follow a certain ratio sequence, it would be clear that very little emphasis is applied to balance the pieces. From a visual point of view, it is clear that the limps are not similar in size and form.

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The use of geometry in the case of Greek art is more pronounced than in the Egyptian case. The line of symmetry, besides the presence of a visual one, can be determined by assessing the dimensions extending from the central vertical regions. On the other hand, it is clear that a sequence has been followed in rendering the shapes of the different body parts of the figure. Considering Greek art, it is easy to notice the angular differences compared to Egyptian art. In this case, it is conclusive that Egyptian art is more of traditional and region-based unlike Greek, which is much geometrical and cultural-based. The difference of the tradition and culture can be observed in the use of available technology of Greek and application of primary know-how in Egyptian art.

Use of Anatomy


The use of anatomical features in Egyptian art is limited to some points unlike in Greek art. In Egyptian art, the primary or the anatomical factor is considered to be the head covered with an Egyptian cloak to symbolize traditions and cultural orientation. In addition, the lower abdomen is covered as well and the exposed parts of the body are limited within ethical lines. The covering of the lower abdomen not only shows that the artist was sensitive to the idea of morals, but it also shows that the showcasing is a specific way of life of a certain group of people.


The Greek art, Diadoumenos, is raw in terms of exposure to the anatomical details. The rawness of the art is in the fact that none of the body parts is covered. Unlike in the Egyptian case, this can be attributed to the idea of the ability to represent reality rather than imagination. In the case of Egyptian art, the appearance of the chest symbolizes that the figure represents a male and the rest of the details are left to the imagination of the observer. On the other hand, the Greek art exposes details to represent a male human body in his bathing suit. Besides the concerns of the details, this figure represents a much factual approach to the anatomy of the human figure. It is clear that the Greek was more focused on details than the Egyptians in consideration of these figures.

Use of Balance


The fact that the Egyptian figure appears to be more static than the Greek one portrays more lack of balance. Balance, in this case, can be defined in two forms; the proportional balance portrayed by anatomical features (symmetry) and balance in terms of posture. Given that the symmetrical balance was discussed in the geometry part of this essay, the focus is further shifted to postural balance. In spite of the supportive lenience provided by an extension of the wall-like feature, the Egyptian figure seems to be struggling with balance. From the look of the striding posture and the aligning of the arms, such combination from a practical point of view pulls the bodily center of gravity somewhere around the lower back (increasing instability).


The description of the Greek figure is that it represents an athlete tying a fillet around his head. The posture of the figure portrays the potential of movement from the athlete. In this case, the spread-out arms, the curved torso, and the placement of the feet portray a stable posture for balance. In this case, the balance of the body is much certain than in the Egyptian figure. It seems that the use of geometry is a key factor in the establishment of balance in carving. In addition, the use of supportive elements in both figures is different and thus shows that the Greek figure uses less support than the Egyptian figure because of geometrical balance established in anatomical profiling.

Use of Rhythm


Rhythm can be defined as the ultimate connection between parts to portray the flow of posture and elements of art. The format in which the Egyptian figure is portrayed shows that the artist portrays the static posture for the figure. In this case, it is a certain point of a striding human where the body shortly stops. However, from the posture of the arms, it is not clear why the figure is in striding posture; this is because the combination that would bring about rhythm would show a striding position accompanied by a forward-stretched arm. Therefore, the use of rhythm, in this case, is minimal, if at all it is present.

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The Greek figure uses rhythm in portraying positional postures and a combination of various details to portray the same. The curved torso and the spread arms are combined to give a striking potential of movement while the feet portray a supportive frame for the movements. The facial looks and the bodily structure of the figure are joined to display masculine and anatomical rhythm. The two figures can be appreciated in their specific traditional and cultural perspectives, but the presence and lack of rhythm in any of them can be blamed on the skill bias of the respective artist.

Differences Portrayed by the Figures


There are numerous physical differences deducible from the figures. However, it is easy to point out the cultural and traditional differences portrayed by both figures. Before venturing into the traditional or revisiting the physical differences, it is important to describe the differences existing between the two artists responsible for these figures. The Egyptian case shows that the artist was more patriotic of his appreciation of manual modeling by the use of resemblance figures. The creation of the Egyptian figure shows that the artist emphasized more on the factors of reality within his moral and experience.


In the Greek figure, the artist does not strike an observer as one who used resemblance as the central guide to creating this figure. The rhythm and balance in both symmetry and posture display an additional touch of construction and developmental alterations aimed at realizing a central goal, perfection.

Ideas Portrayed in a Broad Cultural Sense

The two figures represented in this essay portray a strong sense of cultural ideas that have been developed to pass along messages about the places of origin as well as the ability of the artists within the respective ancient settings. The broad cultural ideas portrayed in the Egyptian figure include the state of mathematical and geometrical knowledge in Egyptian artists, lack of emphasis in details in the ancient Egyptian art, and manual modeling as part of original art.

In the Greek figure, it is known that the Greeks are top mathematicians and many geometrical advances and discoveries have originated from them. In this case, the Greek figure portrays the broad cultural idea of geometrical know-how of the figure’s origin. The creations of symmetrical figures show that the Greeks portray artistic abilities by making use of resources at their disposal to define their heritage and culture.

The portrayal of Different Religious and Cultural Ideas

The main religious and cultural ideas portrayed by the figures outline a series of differences that represent the history of both nations in the artistic fields. Culturally, ancient Greek art follows a criterion that incorporates geometry to bring about the essence of traditional ways of life. In addition, the nature of the Greek figure shows that the religious bias of the people does not take offense in artistic nudity and portrayal of genitalia areas in figures of the art. The above point may not be true in practice, but in regards to Greek history, art has been a way of life, and nudity in art figures has been portrayed in holy cathedrals.

For the case of the Egyptian figure, the main cultural difference in ideas compared to the Greek is in the use of geometry. The culture of the Egyptians as portrayed by this figure shows that mathematical and geometrical advances came in later dates. In addition, a person that has used cloaks to cover the head and the lower abdomen is considered to be a divine one. With the form of the figure, the foundation shows that Egyptian art represents bulk creation as a symbol of permanence. Religiously, the coverings show that some sense of morality is emphasized to blend with the spiritual bias of the Egyptians.

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The difference in Art Forms

The Egyptian and Greek art forms represent various elements of specific cultures. The use of stone carvings in Egyptian art shows that Egypt is endowed with craftsmen and artisans. The portrayal of a prominent figure shows that Egypt’s form of leadership is a cultural factor blended with moral considerations of respect and honor. On the other hand, the Greek figure shows that Greeks were prominent in geometry (display of hinge points) and used it to define their form of art. Lastly, the figure represents an idealized male hero exhibiting everyone and not limited to prominence like in Egyptian art.


Douglas, Bailey. Prehistoric Figurines: Representation and Corporeality in the Neolithic. London: Routledge Publishers, 2005.

Dunn, Christopher. Lost Technologies of Ancient Egypt: Advanced Engineering in the Temples of the Pharaohs. Vermont: Bear&Company, 2010. Web.

Hodge, Susie. Ancient Egyptian Art. Raintree, SA: Heinemann, 2006.

Stokstad, Marilyn. Art History: Ancient Art. San Francisco: Pearson Education, 2007.

Tarbel, F. A History of Greek Art. Meadville: The Chautauqua Press, 2004.

UNESCO. World heritage Centre.Ancient Greek Art. Web.

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