Prehistoric Athens is
not to compare with the
size of Athens of today, the same as for all ancient
cities. Around 600 BC Athens
the whole catchment's area, the district of Attica had around 150.000
Inhabitants. Most of them
were farmers occupied with agriculture and settled down all along the
coast of Attica. The area of Attica at this time come to a size around
Athens was ruled by individual rich noble families, who were only
interested in maintaining and enlarging their power (Tyrants). Around
600 BC, through
impoverishment of the
general middle class and social and economical changes, the demand for
fundamental changes came about. In this situation
594 BC, the Athenian Solon
got elected as the head of the government and came up
with a plan to change this miserable circumstances.
His plan was a
new distribution structure of the political rights and duties.
The standard of the political participation
shouldn't be longer the origin of everyone's (till now just noble could
vote), but the fortune of everyone's.
The Inhabitant of Athens got classified in
four financial groups, depending on their income.
For sure this wasn't a democracy, even if its said later that Solon
is the founder of
it. The national assembly (ekklesia)and
the People's Court (helia)
were from now on accessible
for everybody. The elections for the council
of 400 was still depending of the income.
different financial groups of Solon (Medimen)
got classified by yield
and the resulting income.
Pentakosiomedimnoi (500 Scheffler)
in the army im Heer,
more than 300 Scheffler)
more than 200 Scheffler)
under 200 Scheffler)
was the usual unity of
The names also show the position in
Many things got
subjugated to new
rules. Some were completely new, some remained the same and others got
important was, that all this rules were written down and got published,
so that everybody could refer to it. And still it wasn't a democracy but
at least non noble people, even if they were just rich people, had
access to politics.
this new freedom wasn't accepted that well especially
of noble families is quite normal
and in the first part of the 6 century Athens run
danger to get lost in chaos and anarchy because of fights between those
So it happened that
the Tyrant Peisistrades
took over the ruler ship. He
kept the spirit of Solon and gave priorities to the identification of
the people with Athens. Sport festivals and cultural celebrations should
make stronger the feeling of belonging together.
The Tyrant formed the city to the cultural
center Attica's. It was
a peaceful ruler ship and violent clashes were missing. Athens
experience an upswing
in commerce, craft and business. New
Technologies in treatment with vases, a lot of export of wine and olive
oil, and a clever way of economical politics were responsible for this.
But for a longer duration the people were not satisfied anymore with the
Also however supported
through the achieved prosperity, of the last years.
died and the power passed to his son Hipparchos.
came 514 BC with the
assassination of Peisistratiden
Hipparchos from the Athenian Harmodios
As a result, his brother Hippias
tyranny and introduce stronger punishments.
Now even the noble families opposed against him and asked Kleomees I,
King of Sparta for help. These
forced him 510 BC to leave
the city and helped 508
to take the ruler ship.
He wanted to
re-establish the old noble political system. His opponent Kleisthenes,
of the gender of the Alkmaioniden
demanded extensive new regulation and general participation in politics
for all citizen. Once
again with the help of Sparta it succeeded to push Kleisthenes
and his followers out of the city. As a result a armed rebellion came up
and once again Kleisthenes took over the political power of Athens.
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