Famous Leaders of Ancient Greece: Ancient Greek civilization is undoubtedly one of the richest, diverse and influential civilizations of the world. What made this civilization so special was its people. Ancient Greeks were people who admired and respected arts, education, philosophy, architecture etc.
Famous Leaders of Ancient Greece
Some of the Famous Leaders of Ancient Greece to have born on Greek lands have become the finest leaders world over. Following is a list of Famous Leaders under whom ancient Greece civilization developed and was spread to different parts of the world:
Born in 630 BC, this Athenian statesman is famously known for as a lawmaker and poet. His famous economic and political reforms set free many Athenian slaves and as a result, set Athens on the path of success and glory. When anarchy rule was prevalent in Athens many Athenians succumbed to debt as their land was taken away and then they were sold into slavery by the rich.
When Solon came to power his first major concern was to free the people of Athens from debt. As a result, he freed all the enslaved citizens by redeeming all the fortified land. Solon also distributed citizens based on their income.
Citizens were basically divided into four groups. While only the upper two groups reserved higher positions in the government, people of all groups had to attend the general assembly. Hence, under Solon, the basic fundamentals of modern day democracy were laid down.
The other major development made by Solon was his new code of laws. Before Solon’s code of laws, Draco’s code of laws which was the first written code of laws was being followed. Draco’s laws were extremely severe. Solon reformed the inhumane laws of Draco and made a new code of law which remained the foundation of Athenian law until late 5th century.
Pericles was born in 495 BC and is accredited to be the first citizen of Athens by Thucydides, one his admirers. Pericles came to power in 461 BC and under his rule, Greece prospered in various fields. He was a great admirer of art, philosophy, literature etc. Many artists, poets, philosophers, sculptors came to Athens for work during his rule as they found its atmosphere extremely suitable for their work.
Two of the great ancient Greek monuments namely the Acropolis and the Parthenon was built under his rule. He led Greece for the first couple of years of the Great Peloponnesian war but died in 429 BC of plague. His era is profoundly known as the age of Pericles.
Born in 384 BC, Demosthenes is famously recognized as the most influential orators of ancient Greece. In his childhood and youth, Demosthenes had to face a lot of problems. He belonged to a wealthy family but his father died when he was just seven years old and his guardians took advantage of this. As a result, Demosthenes did not receive much of his father’s wealth.
He had a stammering problem and to overcome that problem he used to practice speaking a lot in front of the mirror and he would often keep pebbles in his mouth while speaking. His talent for writing good speeches was recognized by wealthy Greeks who could not write well to defend themselves in a lawsuit. As a result, they hired him as a logographer and was paid well for his services.
One of his greatest speech was ‘On the Navy Boards’ which he gave to persuade the people of Athens to strengthen their navy so as to give a clear message to Persia that they would not attack first but if need be were ready for a battle.
His oratory skills made him a leader of Athens and it was Demosthenes who rose against King Philip and later his son Alexander. His speech ‘On the Crown’ which he gave in 330 BC is termed as the greatest speech by the greatest orator.
Famously known as Alexander the Great, he is credited with the title of being the greatest commander of Greece.
Born in 356 BC, Alexander was the son of King Phillip of Macedonia. After his father’s death, Alexander came into power and without wasting any time he started expanding the Greek empire. He faced some opposition from other Greek city-states and to silence them he completely destroyed the city-state of Thebes.
He conquered the Persian Empire and spread his Empire to Asia and reached India through Syria, Egypt and what is now called Afghanistan. He was adamant to conquer the whole world but stopped at the Indus River when he reached Punjab in 326 BC.
Alexander never lost a battle in his life and conquered much of the civilized world of that time. After his death, his Empire dissolved and hence ended the legacy of the greatest ruler of Ancient Greece.
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