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Athens and Sparta
Chapter 4 Section 2
Tyranny in the City-States
Nobles seized power from Greek kings
 Farmers had to borrow money from nobles
and often could not pay back debt
 Many farmers lost land and had to work
for nobles or were sold into slavery
 Many unhappy farmers wanted changes in
the power structure
 This led to the rise of tyrants: people who
take power by force and rule with total
Most acted wisely and fairly
With the backing of the common people, the
tyrants overthrew the nobles in 600s B.C.
Became popular because of building projects
 Marketplaces, temples and walls
Greek were never fond of leadership by one man. They
wanted a rule of law with all citizens participating.
Other types of government developed:
 Oligarchy: few people hold power
 Democracy: all citizens share in running government
Founded by the
Needed more land as
population grew
Conquered neighboring
lands and enslaved the
people calling them
Why Was the Military So Important
To keep the helots from rebelling, the
Spartans created a strong military of boys
and men
At age 7 they went to live in a military barracks
 They received a harsh education
 Public beatings
 One garment
 No shoes
 Forced to steal food
Why Was the Military So Important?
At age 20
military service
 remained in
military barracks
for 10 years
At age 30
Returned home
and expected to
 Continued to
train for combat
At age 60
Soldier could
retire from the
Spartan girls were
trained in sports to
become healthy
They had more
freedom than any
other Greek woman
Own property
Move about freely
Spartans gave up much for
their military power.
They had no personal
freedom and they did not
excel in any of the arts,
literature, philosophy, or
What Was Sparta’s Government Like?
Council of Elders
Headed by 2 kings
28 citizens over
the age of 60
Created laws
All men over 30
Voted on laws and
elected ephors
There were 5 and they
enforced laws and
collected taxes
Travel abroad was banned
 Foreign visitors were discouraged
 Helots were well controlled for 250 years
 Focusing on military left the Spartans
In trade
In knowledge of science and other studies
The Spartans believed that the ideal
citizen had the following qualities…
What Was Life in Athens Like?
Boys went to school
Reading, writing, math,
sports, music
Goal was to create a
well rounded Athenian
with a sound mind
and body
At 18 school was over
and boys were citizens
Girls stayed at home
Taught spinning,
weaving and other
household duties
Only some of the
wealthy taught their
daughters to read and
Greek Democracy
A Budding Democracy
The first government in Athens was an
 Again the farmers rebelled against the
Farmers demanded that nobles cancel all debts
and give land to the poor
A Budding Democracy con't
A noble named Solon reformed Athenian
government in 594 B.C.
Canceled all debts
Freed those who became slaves
All male citizens could participate in the
Assembly and courts
Created Council of 400 that wrote laws that
were passed by Assembly
The tyrant Peisistratus seize power 30
years after Solon's reform
Divided large estates amongst landless farmers
Created public works jobs
A Budding Democracy con't
Cleisthenes took power in 508 B.C.
He created a democracy in Athens.
All men could debate openly
Hear court cases
Appoint army generals
He gave Assembly more power.
Created Council of 500 to help Assembly carry
out duties.
Members of the Council were chosen by lottery.
still exclude