A Handbook of Greek Constitutional History by A. H. J. Greenidge

By A. H. J. Greenidge

Excerpt from A instruction manual of Greek Constitutional History

Origin of the city-state; the tribe and the extended family, 12. beginning of Greek monarchy, 14 personality of the heroic monarchy, 15; downfall of this monarchy, 17. move of presidency to the clans, 19 nature of the extended family, 20. The early aristocracies, 21; tendency to oligarchic govern ment, 22. Impulse to colonisation, 24. Early Greek tyranny, 25; its foundation, 25 the tyrants, 27 personality in their executive, 30 how some distance was once it constitutional, 31 political and social results in their rule, 32; downfall of tyranny, 33. upward push of constitutional executive, 34.

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4 Her. v. f>8. ';' Straho p. £382. "' Arist. /W. v. 12--p. 1'MOa. '' Her. i. 5U; Arist. J'ul. v. 5 = p ;J Ael. Var. Hist. i. 19; Strubo p. 325. 1305 a. ii EARLY DEVELOPMENT OF GREEK CONSTITUTIONS 27 to the readjustment of the conflicting claims of the rival parties in the state and the framing of a constitution. But the nature of this personalascendency varied. casesit took the form of a constitutional dictatorship. Such an officewas held by Pittacus in Mitylene, by Zaleucus in Locri, and we may even say by Solon in Athens, for, although nominally sole archon, he was practically dictator.

Pol. v. 12 =p. 1315 b. in this caseMegarian,aid. See W. Fowler Tlw Gity Statep. 127. iii. 46 ; cf. Her. v. 92. 6 The rulers of Sicily are exempted by Thucydides(i. 17) from his general condemnationof the pettinessof the 5 ib. i. 59 ; Thuc. vi. 54. In the Ath. Pol. (c. 16) Peisistratusis said to cf. 157)Gelois despot,not of Syracuse but of Sicily. 4 ib. vi. 103. have ruled /xaAAopTroAm/aSsr) rvpav- tyrant'saims. In Herodotus (vii. 163; 32 OUTLIHES OF GREEK CONSTITUTIONAL this might be won. HISTORY CHAP.

In Sparta the monarchyhad beensavedby the readjustmentof the constitution at the end of the ninth century. Order was restored,but at the expenseof the kingly power. So little is known about the details of this startling change that historians, in their attempts to account for it, have been reducedmainly to conjecture. The movement was so widely spreadthat it is safe to assert that very general causesmust have been at work, and these are more easily discovered than the details of each particular revolution.

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