The Archaic Era | Best Homework Helpers

The Archaic Period of Greece was the period between 800BC and 500BC. It was one of the five periods in which Ancient Greek History can be divided into.  One of the key characteristics of the Archaic era is the politics and the political structures, which were key issues, and also influencers of the Archaic Society of Greece. Politics in this period was an aspect in which the individuals got engaged in their every day-to-day life.

In the Archaic Era, there were advancements and changes in the political systems. This was when there was an introduction of laws into the society by some of the most influential lawgivers such as Solon and Draco. The two were the main lawgivers of the period. The laws determined the type of work people would do, the type of their dressing, the ownership of land, and even the marriage alliances.[1] As a result of the structures and the laws introduced, the livelihood and ways of behaviors of the society were greatly influenced. [2]  The laws became one of the major factors leading to the lifestyle of the Greek population during the entire period. They were drafted to also determine the political structures and ways of governance for the Greek society.

The political structure in the Archaic Period commenced with a simple monarchy.  It later proceeded to be a struggle between the Kings and the nobles. As a result, this led to the emergence of the aristocracy, which entailed leaders from racial groups and tribes ruling the city-state. They mainly encouraged colonization, since they believed that it would help in reducing political unrest. According to these leaders, colonization, would also be the answer to land shortages.[3] Nevertheless, as much as it helped in reducing land shortages, it led to more political unrests, rather than reducing them.  The wealth of the ruling aristocrats was based on the land they possessed rather than trade which was becoming important in this era.  This hence made them fail to participate in trade, unlike the emerging middle class of merchants and traders.

As the middle-class merchants and the traders started getting wealthier, they began commanding for their share of political power from the aristocrats.  There was hence a growing form of social pressure, which led to the emergence of tyrants, mainly the traders.  However, the tyrannies were short-lived, since they did not have any official position.[4] Their enduring tyrannies at this period ended up becoming authoritarian, especially in the later generations. This is a depiction that trade was also a vital factor that influenced the way of living for the Greek society in the Archaic period since it led to the development of a new class and ideas.


Leadership was a major factor that changed the way of living of the Greek Society in the Archaic society. It evolved to varying political systems of governance. There was hence alteration of Greek politicians in this era, which was necessitated by the creation of a political hierarchy that was necessary for the social structure of the society. The political structure in this era was monumental in that it reflected everyday life, which led to Greek prospering throughout the Archaic Period. Despite the changes in political structure, the social stability of the Greek community remained, leading to a period of prosperity in trade.







Ehrenberg, Victor. From Solon to Socrates: Greek History and Civilization during the 6th and 5th Centuries BC. Routledge, 2010

Lavelle, Brian M. Archaic Greece: The Age of New Reckonings. John Wiley & Sons, 2019.

Canevaro, Mirko. “The rule of law as the measure of political legitimacy in the Greek city states.” Hague Journal on the Rule of Law 9, no. 2 (2017): 211-236.



[1] Ehrenberg, Victor. From Solon to Socrates: Greek History and Civilization during the 6th and 5th Centuries BC. Routledge, 2010

[2]. Lavelle, Brian M. Archaic Greece: The Age of New Reckonings. John Wiley & Sons, 2019.


[3] Canevaro, Mirko. “The rule of law as the measure of political legitimacy in the Greek city states.” Hague Journal on the Rule of Law 9, no. 2 (2017): 211-236.

[4] Ibid

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