1 Greece was made up of many small independent
1.1 Athens, Sparta, Thebes, 3 big
1.1.1 Athens grew in power
(5th century) and took
charge over many
188.8.131.52 By the 5th century Athens was a
democracy but only citizens
could play a role in the political
life of the city.
184.108.40.206.1 Women, slaves and
foreigners could not
participate in the
politics of the city.
220.127.116.11.1.1 To vote one had to be an adult, male citizen
who owned land and was not a slave
18.104.22.168.2 The first democracy in the world
22.214.171.124.3 Before the first attempt at democratic
government, Athens was ruled by a series of
archons or chief magistrates, and the Areopagus,
made up of ex-archons.
126.96.36.199.4 Ancient Greek critics of the democracy
include Aristophanes the playwright,
188.8.131.52.5 Plato blamed democracy for killing
184.108.40.206.5.1 In 399 BC Socrates was put on trial and executed for
'corrupting the young and believing in strange gods'.
220.127.116.11 Leading philosophers, poets, scientists,
artists, rhetoricians and literary
theorists were attracted from all over
the Greek world to come to Athens.
18.104.22.168.1 The city became a hub for
22.214.171.124.2 Only native-born males were
granted citizenship and they
made up not even a quarter of the
population of the city.
126.96.36.199 Plato and Aristotle pointed out the unfairness of democracy: 'it
distributes a sort of equality to equal and unequal alike'."
1.2 They had differing views and systems on politics and culture and so frequently there was
1.3 States were called polis
1.3.1 Each had their own government
2 The themes within Old Comedy were local
in colour and theme which helped the
audience relate to the subject matter
3.1 The Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC) was an ancient
Greek war fought by Athens and its empire against the
Peloponnesian League led by Sparta
3.1.1 413 BC: The Athenians and their allies suffered a catastrophic
defeat in the Sicilian Expedition, a turning-point in the
long-running Peloponnesian War.
188.8.131.52 In 411 BC, the Athenian democracy was overthrown in favour of an
184.108.40.206.1 Oligarchy: a small group of people having control of a country or
220.127.116.11.2 Democracy was suppressed by the
Macedonians in 322 BC.
4 In 404 BC Athens was defeated and occupied by
5 Pericles - hero to the city state
5.1 Succeeded by Cleon
5.2 Longest-lasting democratic leader
6 Audiences could make a play a success by cheering and stamping their feet – or a miserable failure
by throwing food at the performers. But if the audience we’re getting too rowdy, the theatre staff
had big sticks to keep them quiet.