Ostracism in Ancient Greece


From the school history curriculum, I remember that the chapters in the textbook were always devoted to this or that war, revolution, or the reign of some monarch.

An interesting fact also remained in the memory: at any time, almost all monarchs were tyrants. In addition, they did not differ in special intelligence or talent as a strategist, and even more so in philanthropy. They surrounded themselves with experienced, knowledgeable people and listened to their advice. At the same time, the most honest and fair, at best, were sent to hell.

Why? It's not a secret. The government does not like the good and honest. Why? I have an answer: in order not to look unworthy against their background.

As in any other team, the subordinate should not stand out. Therefore, one can rarely say something good about rulers. For the most part, they were tyrants. And, as you can see today, little has changed.

The experience of government is adopted from history, but, unfortunately, negative.

Of course, we choose by voting, but very rarely do we know what the real qualities of our chosen one are. That's why we make mistakes so often. The worst thing is that we have no chance to correct our mistake. From this all troubles.

Why don't we learn democracy from Ancient Greece? The Athenian reformer Cleisthenes proposed an interesting solution that could prevent the emergence of a potential tyrant in the country.

Are you familiar with the word ostracism ? This is its origin. In Athens, clay amphoras were publicly smashed in the main square. Plenty so that there are enough shards for everyone. Citizens dismantled the shards and scratched on them the names of those from the ruling clique with whom they were unhappy. According to the law, the one whose name was mentioned 6 thousand times was removed from his powers and expelled from the country for 10 years. The shards were called ostraca. This is how the expression "ostracized" was born.

Tyrants and stealing senators were driven out. As well as criminals and villains, whose guilt has not been proven, but is known to everyone. The exile was given 10 days to settle all his affairs and leave Attica. At the same time, his property was not confiscated, he could receive income from it; he was not deprived of citizenship, but for a long time excluded from the life of the policy.

In my opinion, a great way to make monarchs serve their people faithfully. Put it into practice now! Imagine how many politicians would be ostracized today.

We often choose the wrong ones. For different reasons. Election campaigning, assurances of candidates, commitment to one party or another. But we must leave the right to correct our mistake. To hold such a vote once a year. Not with shards, of course, with more modern means.

I think that none of the elect would want to go into exile for 10 years - neither for corruption, nor for embezzlement, and, moreover, for unleashing a war with another state.

If you want to rule, ensure that your subjects have all the rights: peace, justice, equality , care. If you can not cope with the obligations you have assumed - leave! Let's find a better one!

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