On the first meeting of the Assembly at the Pnyx, Thearion, the celebrity baker who intriguingly bakes his loaves of bread into the shape of animals, served as herald and sacrificed a boar to the Goddess Demeter, hoping she would bless the day and allow for the rebuild and healing of Athens to decisively begin. However, it seems Demeter was not immediately impressed with the offering, as shortly thereafter a rain quall blew in from the Saronic Gulf and brought upon a deluge that dismayed hundreds of Athenians attending the Assembly and innervated their sense to flee the area. Those resilient enough to stay, including Aristarchus, an Oligarch who presided over the assembly that day, understood the results of that day’s debate, which would …show more content…
They were countered by Thearion, Callias the Oligarch, and Aristocles who all opposed granting metics and slaves to gain voting rights. An expanded democracy could not be a good idea due to the incompetence of the masses. An ill-vetted electorate would ostensibly destroy the integrity of the democracy. Due to constraints in time, the Assembly adjourned without resolving to vote, leaving the final decision to have to come on the following …show more content…
A last second proposition by the Solonian Aristocrat Miltiades to publically fund the arts and preserve Athenian culture also soundly passed.
On the fourth day at the Pnyx, the trial initiated by Theozitides was held. Simon the cobbler provided the pig sacrifice to the goddess Athena and the Assembly, led this day by Thrasybulus, set out to determine the fate of Socrates. Lycon, Anytus, and Meletus formed the prosecution, accusing Socrates of being aligned with the Thirty, profaning the Gods, and corrupting the youth to Athenian way of life. They deemed Socrates crimes of corruption and impiety did not merit the death penalty, but were serious enough to merit exile.
Socrates’ defendants included his disciples Crito and Xenophon. Both rebuked the claim that Socrates was guilty of corruption and impiety, claiming their teacher was merely a thinker who circulated new ideas and always acted in the best interest of Athens; he was a verily a “gadfly” who was concerned with the intellectual health of Athens and all
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If I were a juror in this trial I would plan to vote note guilty. The basis of my decision would be simple. In Socrates' defense speech he is clear in his arguments, and I was thoroughly convinced when he cross examined Meletus and cornered him on many areas of his charges against Socrates. An example of this is when Socrates says, "All Athenians, it seems, make the young into fine and good men, except me, and I alone corrupt them. Is that what you mean? -- That is most definitely what I mean." Socrates then goes and counter attacks by asking Meletus if this also applies to other animals. Socrates asks if all men improve horses and only one person corrupts them. Socrates ends this small argument by saying "You have made it sufficiently obvious, Meletus, that you have never had any concern for our youth; you show your indifference clearly; that you have given no thought to the subjects about which you bring me to trial." This quote from the text obviously shows that Meletus does not
A reading of Thucydides’, Pericles’ Funeral Oration and The Melian Dialogue uncovers both contrasting and comparable viewpoints on Athenian politics, power, aims of war, and empire. Thucydides presents two differing characteristics of Athens, one as the civilizer in Pericles’ funeral oration and the other as an tyrant in the Melian dialogue. In the funeral oration delivered by Pericles during the first year of the war, the Athenian leader emphasizes the idealized personal image of the Athenians in regard to their constitution and good character. Pericles goes on to praise the Athenian democratic institution of Athens that contributes to their cities greatness; in Pericles’s own words, “The Athenian administration favors the many instead of few… they afford equal justice to all of their differences” (112, 2.37). This quote emphasizes the good character of the Athens’ to coax and encourage the Athenians to preserve and better their great empire into the future. On the other hand, in the Melian dialogue, this notion of justice and equality is irrelevant; one, because Athens compared to Melos, is the stronger of the two and thus, is more powerful. Further, Athens, will continue to acquire absolute power and build its empire by conquering Melos and whomever else stands in its way. Through Pericles’ funeral oration and the Melian dialogue, the following conclusions/themes will demonstrate both the changing and somewhat stable nature of Athenian policy with regards to empire,
In the Aftermath of the Peloponnesian war between Athens and Sparta, Pericles, Athens’ general and statesmen, delivered a powerfully comforting eulogy to the polis of Athens, assuring the people that their city state is in good hands, and easing the pain of all the families and relatives of the deceased. He uses several rhetorical devices throughout his speech to gain a positive emotional appeal by his audience and makes assertions in the attempt to enhance and transform the perception of him by the audience.
Democracy, the form of government in which there is a rule by the people, is said to have originated and thrived in the classical period of Athens, from 500-350 B.C.. Democracy inherently gave all that were considered citizens power to participate in politics. That being said, it is highly debated as to how much power the people, also known as the demos, exercised in this democracy. Many practices and informal institutions can be said to have limited the power of the demos. The democracy in Athens could be said to have been a democracy in theory yet not in practice, as can be proven through a variety of primary sources recounting Athenian political institutions and practices. Such primary sources that can demonstrate this include Herodotus’ History, Thucydides History of the Peloponnesian War, and Demosthenes’ Oration Against Eubulides.
In the past week I have read different documents about the Ancient Athens and whether or not it was a true democracy. To sum up all the documents my hypothesis was true. I believed they weren't a true democracy. Athens wasn’t a true Democracy because Demokratia was ruled by male citizens only which made up 12% of the population. Women, slaves, and foreigners weren't allowed to vote.
Socrates was a great philosopher of the Greek world. He was quite an atypical and distinctive person. Being different from all the other philosophers of the land, Socrates was teaching his students ideas totally out of the ordinary from what the society believed was right. As a result, he displeased many people so much that they decided to get rid of him. Socrates was put to trial, accused of spoiling the youth of Athens, tried and sentenced to death. His personal defense is described in works two of his students: Xenophon and Plato. Both of them wrote papers called Apology, which is the Greek word for “defense”. In this essay I used Apology by Plato as the main resource, since it contents a more full account of the trial of Socrates and
Socrates was put on trial with a jury of his peers who were already biased against him. He could have fled, but he chose to face them. This showed fortitude. He was charged with not recognizing the gods, inventing deities, and corrupting the people of Athens. His first and most important counter was the fact that the Oracle of Delphi called him the wisest man. “He asked whether there was anyone wiser than I. The Pythia replied that no one was wiser” (Plato, 4). If the Greeks were so devoted to their
The city-states of Ancient Greek provide examples of different types of government structures that, even
Democracy is defined as “rule by the people”. The last paragraph of Document B says that the Athens elected all government officials through lot, not voting by the people. This is one reason that Ancient Athens cannot be considered truly democratic.
People may say Athens was not a democracy because of the fact that only 12% of the population could vote. Although, if you look at the definition of democracy, it says, “all the eligible members of state.” In Athens, the eligible members of state were any citizens that were men. It may also be argued that because they had slaves,
“[…] it is the poor which mans the fleet and has brought the state her power […] these have brought the state her power much rather than the…best-born and the elite […] it seems right that all should have a share in offices filled by lot or by election, and that any citizen who wishes should be allowed to speak […]” presented by Document B. This projects the idea that common men are in fact the backbone to society, rather than picking out the hereditarily wealthy of the people of Rome. As cited in Document E, the Athenian Assembly met forty times a year, all citizens were eligible to attend, and the united citizens chose their five-hundred officials by lot. The fact that there is a healthy amount of meetings per year, allows all of the citizens to be aware of government affairs by witnessing for themselves. The lottery further allowed a fair chance for all citizens to participate from the officials chosen by the Athenians, the Council of
In Chapter 1, the author assesses the unique and eternal achievements of 5th century BCE Athenian culture. She introduces several basic dichotomies that define her understanding of the writers and events of the period in the later chapters.
Socrates was brought into the courts under charges of impiety and corruption of minors. Socrates did not believe in the divinities of the city-state. The punishment decided upon was an execution, in the hope that Socrates would choose exile, a punishment that would have satisfied the jury.
In Aristotle's Politics, he focuses much on the regimes of an oligarchy and of a democracy. Democracies exists when the free and poor, being a majority, have authority to rule, and have an equal share in the city. Oligarchies exists when the few wealthy and better born have authority and grant benefits in proportion to a person's wealth (1280a:10-30;1290a:5-10).