Aristocracy In Ancient Greece

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Introduction: Ancient Greece with all of its greatness and splendor had numerous polis or city-states; to be precise, 1500 separate poleis or cities. The most recognized and popular among the city-states being Athens and Sparta. Each of these city-states was governed as autonomous countries even though they were nothing more than a small district. With so many city-states, comes the burden of governance. In this paper, we explore how each of the polis structured its government. We further discuss which city-states operated a monarchy, aristocracy, tyranny, oligarchy, and which city-state had a democracy? This paper carefully dissects the similarities in the administrative set up of these states. We also examine the differences of this system. Finally, in an attempt to provide clarity, this paper defines each governmental system and locates the…show more content…
Aristocracy is a form of government where power is in the hand of the upper class. These upper-class citizens are regarded as the best and capable of delivering the best government for the people even if this sentiment does not have empirical evidence. One major problem most city-states in ancient Greece had was the issue of aristocracy and how they conducted themselves before the public. The aristocrats were arrogant, oppressive, and often maneuver their ideology on the government. Although Athens was a democracy, aristocracy was very much present in the system. There are several studies that indicate that Athens was deeply entrenched in aristocratic practices “As in other Greek cities, political power was in the hands of several large aristocratic families or clans (genei) which controlled large areas of Attica, the territory around Athens” (American School of Classical Studies., n.d., para 1). This is an absolute indication that not only Athens was involved in aristocratic philosophy, but almost every city- state in ancient Greece was apparently
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