Athenians participated in the public life and the process of decision making for the community, by the means of direct democracy; Thetes - all free male members who were also a citizen of Athens – had the right to partake in debates and passing laws in Ekklesia or “People’s Assembly”. According to Peter J. Brand (n.d), Athenians who had the right to practice in this governmental system did so in a Legislative counsel known as the Boule council (p. 19). On the other hand, Spartan were warriors and Sparta was a militarized society. However, the governmental system of Sparta was more complex than a purely militaristic system.
One major difference is that the Spartan government had two kings that came from separate royal families which tied back to their legendary founders (Agiads and Eurypontids). The government of Athens had no king. It is also worth noting that all Spartan male citizens were soldiers and equally shared right of fighting for Sparta unlike in Athens were there were male citizens who were land owners among other non-military wealthy Athenians. The also differ in that Athens was a very democratic society which also produced a lot of philosophers unlike Sparta that produced well trained soldiers and ruled by military dictatorship as opposed to the popular myth of Spartans being equal (socially and
Exploring Ancient Greek Governments The Ancient Greeks were particularly concerned with such fundamental questions as who should rule and how? Should sovereignty lie in the rule of law, the constitution, officials, or the citizens? These are not questions that plague those in power in our modern era however caused great conflict in Ancient Greece (Cartwright, 2013). From one polis to the next, each had the right to determine (some taken by force) how their city-state would be ran and by whom. Monarchy, tyranny, aristocracy, oligarchy and democracy are all forms of government the ruled the different polies in Ancient Greece.
Instead of being ruled my emperors or the upper class, the democracy allowed all male citizens to have equal political rights, freedom of speech, and the opportunity to participate in their government. “The Athens’ political affairs were open to all citizens. Every citizen had the right and obligation to take part in state affairs and voice their opinions.” The changes that Athens put in place were so important that they impact us even until this day.
How are Sparta and Athens different and similar to each other? These are the types of questions that allow us to understand the two cities politically. Althought Classical Athens was a democracy, not all citizens had the same rights and benefits. Women, slaves, and foreigners were not citizens, which leaves the males as the only individuals with citizenship. Having citizenship means not being excluded from politics and having the option of serving in the Assembly.
Over thousands of years ago in Ancient Greece many early civilizations formed in making a powerful civilized society. Many civilizations were successful at one point, but other civilizations did not have as much success. Much success was because of the size of the army and in addition the power one civilization had. One early successful civilizations that did not rely so much on the size of the army or society, but relied more on the quality of the army and making sure everyone works as one unit. Sparta was a city-state located in Ancient Greece that was based off a strict warrior society known as Lacedaemon.
in the more advanced areas of Greece, economically and socially speaking” (“Greek Administration”, 1988). The polis was a way of the Greeks finding a way to organize themselves into a society, becoming more civilized. According to Greek Administration, “In its fundamental essence it was never conceived as an extent of territory, although its boundaries could be drawn on a map, but rather as a group of citizens feeling themselves bound together under the rule of law” (“Greek Administration, 1988). In terms that are more familiar to the way we teach history today in our society, the polis is what we would call a city-state, each individual polis being its own city-state, acting almost like a small country. According to Nardo, “Although all Greeks, the residents of the various poleis developed differing local governments and customs as well as different forms of currency” (Nardo, 2007).
Their purpose was to terrorize the Helots into submission. How were the two city-states similar in their governmental structures? How did they differ? Similarities between Athen's and Sparta's Government structures: Both Athens and Sparta accepted free-man as their main participants in their government. Neither Athens or Sparta give women or slaves equal participation in their government and were not considered to be free.
Ancient Sparta has often been referred to as one of the most dominant military forces in history. During Sparta’s time of dominance, Spartan forces employed tactics of intimidation and sovereignty. Spartan soldiers dedicated their lives to training and preparing for battle, enabling them to create a fierce, dominant military. Sparta used their military for both protection and conquering, maintaining a stable economy and civilization. The Spartan military was able to dominate for so long because of superior military tactics, extensive training and discipline and advanced weaponry and armor, and intimidation and help from the gods.
In the battle of Troy Odysseus led his men with great confidence; on the battlefield the men trusted him with their lives. There are many versions of the Odyssey, and they all translated the word anex into king; however Odysseus was not a sovereign king. Odysseus was considered to be a great leader in battle and a man greatly respected among the people of Ithaca. It was unlikely either the people of Ithaca or his men treated Odysseus the same way kings are treated in today’s society, with supreme authority. Odysseus was between twenty and thirty years old when he left for the battle of Troy, so he most likely did not make a huge impact on the region of Ithaca before he left.