The Direct Democracy Of Ancient Greece

Samuel Reason | May 11th, 2018

Politicians being chosen at random seems a bit strange, but if you sit down and think about it, someone who is not actively looking to work in politics could potentially be a much better-suited candidate. And that is exactly what used to happen in ancient Athens in Greece, about 2400 years ago they practiced what is known as direct democracy.

newlyswissed.com

It was an experiment that was loved so much it continued for around 100 years, basically, it made sure that every adult citizen had to take an active part in the government. Each year there was a random lottery drawing, five hundred names would be drawn from a pool of their citizens. And for that year those 500 would form the government, they would be responsible for creating laws or changing old laws. However, nothing actually happened until the whole city had voted on the law, so essentially every citizen of Athens always had an active part in their government.

This route was chosen because it was thought if government electives were chosen by votes, then the elites and rich landowners would be able to influence the outcome. To vote all a citizen had to do was be to attend the assembly when the day of the vote came along. The majority ruled the outcome of the vote, and if you wanted to vote then you had to be present on the day. They made sure everyone was aware of the voting schedule by posting the dates.

It is, however, important to note that at this time a citizen was considered free men, therefore, women, children or slaves could not participate in votes. So, unfortunately, it was not the best form of democracy as many people who were part of their society could not vote. Still, it proved to be very popular and would have most likely have kept going if Greece had not lost a war to Sparta, which as a result left Athens ruled by a group of Spartans.

Many researchers and historians look back at this period as one of the finest forms of democracy, and Greece is often looked at as one of the birthplaces of the notion of democracy.

Next Article
  • The Megamouth Shark Species Has Only Been Spotted Sixty Times

    An extremely rare type of shark which swims around Taiwanese, Philippines and Japanese waters was only first spotted in 1976. The terrifying beast usually weighs over a ton and can be over five meters long. Megamouth sharks generally just swim with their mouths open, filling themselves up with krill, shrimp and plankton. [caption id="attachment_6959" align="aligncenter"...

    Read More
  • Human Saliva Contains A Compound More Powerful Than Morphine

    In need for some natural painkillers or just having a bad day? Well then you may just be able to spit on yourself, yes that is right human saliva contains a natural ingredient that is more powerful than morphine. In fact, the substance that scientists have found recently is actually six times more potent than...

    Read More
  • Man Survives Without Eating For Over A Year

    At the most, you can survive without food for a couple of weeks, occasionally a bit longer but for most people starvation will kill you. But the limits on how long people can go without eating are actually very complicated and are more of a case by case basis. Without water, people can only really...

    Read More
  • Ancient Underground City Of Derinkuyu

    If you are looking for your next tourist destination think about checking out the ancient underground city of Derinkuyu in Cappadocia the central Anatolia region of Turkey. A beautiful natural wonder in itself with caverns and caves but it is also a place that has an extensive subterranean city. Secret tunnels and underground dwellings that...

    Read More
  • Most Of Your Mobile Phone Batteries Are Simply Resold

    Less and less cell phone batteries fail during the warranty period now than ever before and this is due to the move to lithium-ion batteries. Lithium-ion is less temperamental than the nickel-based predecessors and also needs very little preparation to put into phones. However, that being said the return volume for batteries keeps on going...

    Read More
  • These Most Charitable Celebs Have Helped Countless People

    Some celebrities have more power and money us ordinary people can imagine. Even though directors, musicians, and athletes live in luxury with flashy cars, expensive mansions, and wild vacations, some celebs do have a softer side to give something back to those who need it the most. Thankfully, they use their voices and wallets to...

    Read More
  • Most Powerful Men Throughout History

    History is very powerful. We don’t always realize the influence it has on us. Many men have been involved in affecting the way we live today. Men with great minds, men who have done great acts or have created movements of thought. Tracing how their actions affect us can actually feel liberating and help us...

    Read More
  • Blue Streetlights Reduce Crime And Suicides

    In an interesting development, it is thought that blue streetlights are helping reducing crime and suicides in Japan and Scotland. In Tokyo, an increasing amount of railway companies have decided to install blue streetlights and blue light emitting apparatus at stations as it is becoming evident that the blue lights to help prevent people committing...

    Read More