The state of democracy in ancient greece

In the mid-5th century the number of adult male citizens was perhaps as high as 60, but this number fell precipitously during the Peloponnesian War.

Top 10 Little-Known Facts About Ancient Greek Democracy

The powers of officials were precisely defined and their capacity for initiative limited. Yet, after the demise of Athenian democracy, few looked upon it as a good form of government.

5b. Democracy Is Born

They saw it as the rule of the poor that plundered the rich, and so democracy was viewed as a sort of "collective tyranny". An unknown proportion of citizens were also subject to disenfranchisement atimiaexcluding some of them permanently and others temporarily depending on the type.

There were also no rules about what kinds of cases could be prosecuted or what could and could not be said at trial, and so Athenian citizens frequently used the dikasteria to punish or embarrass their enemies.

Unlike office holders magistrateswho could be impeached and prosecuted for misconduct, the jurors could not be censured, for they, in effect, were the people and no authority could be higher than that.

Athenian democracy

In the 5th century there was in effect no procedural difference between an executive decree and a law: One reason that financial officials were elected was that any money embezzled could be recovered from their estates; election in general strongly favoured the rich, but in this case wealth was virtually a prerequisite.

During the meeting, citizens were free to express their opinions and cast their votes. Over time some city-states, like Athens would change governments. Women were not citizens and therefore could not vote or have any say in the political process.

The lottery system also prevented the establishment of a permanent class of civil servants who might be tempted to use the government to advance or enrich themselves. In Athens, the people governed, and the majority ruled. During the period of holding a particular office everyone on the team is observing everybody else.

However, by now Athens had become "politically impotent". For them, the common people were not necessarily the right people to rule and made huge mistakes.

Ancient Greek Democracy

To give a schematic scenario by way of illustration: Poor citizens gained the right to sit in the assembly and to vote.

Probably jurors would be more impressed if it seemed as though the litigant were speaking for themselves. One might expect the term "demarchy" to have been adopted, by analogy, for the new form of government introduced by Athenian democrats.Aug 23,  · Although this Athenian democracy would survive for only two centuries, Cleisthenes’ invention was one of ancient Greece’s most enduring contributions to the modern world.

Demokratia and the Demos. It was in Greece, and particularly Athens, that democracy was first conceived and used as a primary form of government.

The Greek City-State Ancient Greece was made up of city-states. A city-state was a major city and the surrounding areas. Each city-state had its own rule and government. Sometimes the city-states fought each other.

Solon has been called one of the Seven Wise Men of Greece. Nevertheless, the idea of democratic government is one of the most significant contributions of the ancient Greeks. The city-state of Athens had one of the largest democracies in terms of population. Ancient Sources.

Other city-states had, at one time or another, systems of democracy, notably Argos, Syracuse, Rhodes, and Erythrai. In addition, sometimes even oligarchic systems could involve a high degree of political equality, but the Athenian version, starting from c.

BCE and ending c. BCE and involving all male citizens, was certainly. Find out more about the history of Ancient Greek Democracy, including videos, interesting articles, pictures, historical features and more.

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The state of democracy in ancient greece
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