The Legacy of Ancient Greece & Rome The Roots of Democracy
MAIN IDEA: • The Greeks developed democracy, and the Romans added representative government and a written legal code.
WHY IT MATTERS NOW: • Representation and a written law code are important features of democratic governments around the world.
ANCIENT GREECE Socrates Plato Aristotle
I.) Athens Builds a Limited Democracy • A.) At the beginning of its history, Athens is ruled by a king and later was ruled by aristocracy. • B.) Solon introduces political reforms that gives rights to more people. • C.) Cleisthenes also works to make Athens more democratic.
II.) Changes in Greek Democracy • A.) In the fifth century B.C., Pericles introduces the idea of direct democracy & paid government officials in Athens. • B.) Philosophers, including Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, use logic and reason to explore new ideas, creating an atmosphere helpful to democracy.
-Socrates: Stressed importance of knowledge; taught by asking questions • -Plato: wrote “The Republic” which stated rule should be by the wisest (“philosopher-king”) • -Aristotle: wrote “Politics” which presented his views of government (rule by the middle class )
C.) The Greeks develop a number of ideas about institutions for governing that are important in our government today.
III.) Legacy of Greece • A.) Stressed the use of logic & reason rather than superstitions or simple traditions. • B.) Showed that democracy could work. • C.) Developed the idea of separate branches of government.
I.) Rome Develops a Republic • A.) Around 500 B.C., Rome develops a republic. • B.) Expansion creates problems for the Roman republic, with alternating civil wars and rule by dictators, like Julius Caesar. • C.) Rome ends republic and democracy when Octavian Augustus Caesar becomes emperor and creates the empire in 27 B.C.
II.) Roman Law • A.) Rome develops a set of laws that apply equally to people throughout the empire. • B.) Roman law furthers democratic traditions in Rome and in civilizations that follow.
III.) Legacy of Rome • A.) Created the idea of a republic. • B.) Adopted the Greek idea that an individual is a citizen rather than a subject of the ruler. • C.) Greatest legacy was its written legal code and the idea that it code be applied equally to all citizens. • D.) They preserved, added to, and passed to the future the Greek idea of democracy.