Government in Greece: Pages Through the Ages
Ancient Greek Government. Ancient Greece was divided into areas called city-states. There were many city-states and each one had it's own government. Athens and Sparta were two of the most powerful city-states. Sparta was ruled by the military. In earliest times, Athens was governed by a monarchy. A monarchy is a Greek work meaning "ruled by one." Soldiers hand-picked their new leader and put him into power. Monarchy did not last long in Athens. In 800 B.C., the Athenians build a new government called an oligarchy, which means "ruled by the few." In 600 and 500 B.C., some leaders were known as tyrants. A tyranny is an unjust government led by someone who has taken power. By 508 B.C. democracy started in Athens. Greece had one of the first democracies ever!