Ancient Greece: From Dark Ages To Democracy

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From Dark Ages to Democracy During the years of 1500 to 500 BCE Ancient Greece experienced many developments, which would lead to the democracy in Athens. The Dark Age began with the fall of the Mycenaean’s who were Ancient Greeks. The Dark Ages were characterized by warfare, the collapse of literature, and economic crisis. This period most likely ended with the relationships between the Near East and Greece, which helped civilization come back to life. There were many factors that developed in Greece that helped Athens become the first democracy including the polis and new concepts of citizens, trade and colonization, as well as writing and written laws.
The first major development in Greece was the introduction of city-states, the polis.
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With each city-state being a small community of people, it was necessary that trade was used to help bring goods into each polis. “By 800 B.C.E the Mediterranean swarmed with entrepreneurs of many nationalities.” (53) Greeks established many trading posts with the Phoenicians as well as Egypt and other places in the Near East. Most of the Greek trade came from entrepreneurs instead of state trade. Many of the hard working entrepreneurs believed that “their self-won economic success entitled them to a say in government.”(65) Small business is one of the key components to a successful democracy and Ancient Greece was one of the first empires to accomplish this feat. Due to the mountainous terrain only a small proportion of Greece’s land could be farmed. Cattle and horses were uncommon where pigs, sheep, goats, and chickens were more accessible. Many farmers moved to other places so that they could farm and import and export goods. In order to come across farmland goods they relied on trade to bring in goods such as grain. Greece’s main trade exports were barley, grapes, and olives to make olive oil. Trade helped Greece become culturally aware and influenced a lot of there own work. The era of free trade allowed Greece to develop freely and openly, which made democracy

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