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Gresham College: Professor Paul Cartledge | Ten Things You Really Should Know About Ancient Greek Democracy

Professor Paul Cartledge explores the democracy in ancient Greece and the origins of the word, and how that distinguishes from todays notion of democracy.

Myths abound about ancient Greek democracy actually, there was no such thing. That is, there was no such one thing. Even Athens, which invented both the thing and the name, had at least three versions over a span of about 150 years. But although the ancient Greeks have given the world democracy, ancient Greek democracy was in several crucial and fundamental respects very different indeed from, if not opposite to, what passes for democracy today.