During peacetime the kings were kept in check by ephors (ephoroi) who were themselves elected by the assembly. By state law the City Council must also appoint the Police Chief, Fire Chief and City Clerk. Participation was far from open to all residents, but was instead limited to adult, male citizens (i.e., not a foreign resident, regardless of how many generations of the family had lived in the city, nor a slave, nor a woman), who "were probably no more than 30 percent of the total adult population"..  Altogether, the boule was responsible for a great portion of the administration of the state, but was granted relatively little latitude for initiative; the boule's control over policy was executed in its probouleutic, rather than its executive function; in the former, it prepared measures for deliberation by the assembly, in the latter, it merely executed the wishes of the assembly. 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. Types of Government in Ancient Greece Democracy In a democracy government, the power to make decisions is in the hands of all of the people, who are called citizens. Although democracy predated Athenian imperialism by over thirty years, they are sometimes associated with each other. His relations with Athens were already strained when he returned to Babylon in 324 BC; after his death, Athens and Sparta led several states to war with Macedonia and lost.. Syracuse in Sicily had a run of famous tyrants, for example, Dionysios from 405 BCE and his son Dionysios II, who took over in 367 BCE. For private suits only the victims or their families could prosecute, while for public suits anyone (ho boulomenos, 'whoever wants to' i.e. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Unlike Athens, the US has representatives from the House of Representatives for each state, to speak for them, whereas Athens government and legislative bodies form together and the people speak to them, and they then resolve the issues at hand. At times the imperialist democracy acted with extreme brutality, as in the decision to execute the entire male population of Melos and sell off its women and children simply for refusing to become subjects of Athens. An oligarchy is a system of political power controlled by a select group of individuals, sometimes small in number but it could also include large groups. When it is a question of settling private disputes, everyone is equal before the law; when it is a question of putting one person before another in positions of public responsibility, what counts is not membership of a particular class, but the actual ability which the man possesses. Athens, Georgia is one of the thousands of cities across the United States that decided to make this "A Day On and Not a Day Off." As was true elsewhere in the Greek world, the individual city-state (polis) of Athens had once been ruled by kings, but that had given way to an oligarchic government by archons elected from the aristocratic (Eupatrid) families. During the 4th century BC, there might well have been some 250,000–300,000 people in Attica. History students also learn Unlike a parliament, the assembly's members were not elected, but attended by right when they chose. Pericles, according to Thucydides, characterized the Athenians as being very well-informed on politics: We do not say that a man who takes no interest in politics is a man who minds his own business; we say that he has no business here at all. Every citizen was a part of the government, no matter what their social standing. Athens government Athens before the 8th century. Written by Mark Cartwright, published on 20 March 2018 under the following license: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike. Athens was the first city-state to have a true and efficient form of democracy. The City of Athens has a municipal government comprised of an elected Mayor and 5 members of a City Council. Government - Government - Greece: The Phoenician example was followed by the Greeks, originally Indo-European nomads who gradually made their way south to the Aegean and there took to the sea. Around 500 B.C.E., the people of the city-state of Athens Cleisthenes issued reforms in 508 and 507 BC that undermined the domination of the aristocratic families and connected every Athenian to the city's rule. Part of the ethos of democracy, rather, was the building of general competence by ongoing involvement. Justice was rapid: a case could last no longer than one day and had to be completed by the time the sun set. Thucydides the son of Milesias (not the historian), an aristocrat, stood in opposition to these policies, for which he was ostracised in 443 BC. In Greece, citizens did not elect their favorite people to represen… Democracy - A government ruled by the people, or assembly. Another group, on the other hand, considers that, since many Athenians were not allowed to participate in its government, Athenian democracy was not a democracy at all. Furthermore, they used the income from empire to fund payment for officeholding. As the system evolved, the last function was shifted to the law courts. Boards & Commissions. In part, this was a consequence of the increasingly specialized forms of warfare practiced in the later period. Government - Government - Greece: The Phoenician example was followed by the Greeks, originally Indo-European nomads who gradually made their way south to the Aegean and there took to the sea. This expression encapsulated the right of citizens to take the initiative to stand to speak in the assembly, to initiate a public lawsuit (that is, one held to affect the political community as a whole), to propose a law before the lawmakers, or to approach the council with suggestions. Yet in the case of Pericles, it is wrong to see his power as coming from his long series of annual generalships (each year along with nine others).  In addition, there were some limitations on who could hold office. (In present-day use, the term "demarchy" has acquired a new meaning. This slump was permanent, due to the introduction of a str… If the Assembly voted in favor of the proposed change, the proposal would be referred for further consideration by a group of citizens called nomothetai (literally "establishers of the law").. For example, two men have clashed in the assembly about a proposal put by one of them; it passes, and now the two of them go to court with the loser in the assembly prosecuting both the law and its proposer. There are also two specifically political texts with the same title, The Constitution of the Athenians, one written by Aristotle or one of his pupils and the other attributed (by some) to Xenophon.  No appeal was possible. In 621 BC, Draco replaced the prevailing system of oral law by a written code to be enforced only by a court of law. Under the 4th century version of democracy, the roles of general and of key political speaker in the assembly tended to be filled by different persons. These are the assembly (in some cases with a quorum of 6000), the council of 500 (boule), and the courts (a minimum of 200 people, on some occasions up to 6,000). Cleisthenes broke up the unlimited power of the nobility by organizing citizens into ten groups based on where they lived, rather than on their wealth. Anything higher had to go before a court. any citizen with full citizen rights) could bring a case since the issues in these major suits were regarded as affecting the community as a whole. Sometimes, mixed constitutions evolved with democratic elements, but "it definitely did not mean self-rule by citizens".. In situations involving a public figure, the initiator was referred to as a kategoros ('accuser'), a term also used in cases involving homicide, rather than ho diokon ('the one who pursues').. Whatever professionalism there was tended to disguise itself; it was possible to pay for the services of a speechwriter or logographer (logographos), but this may not have been advertised in court. Other sources which discuss politics and government include Aristotle’s Politics and the historical works of Herodotus, Thucydides, and Xenophon. While Ephialtes's opponents were away attempting to assist the Spartans, he persuaded the Assembly to reduce the powers of the Areopagus to a criminal court for cases of homicide and sacrilege.