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What did Solon achieve?

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Introduction

What did Solon achieve? Solon 'the reformer' as he was know was an Archon from 594-593bc in the time of the Greeks. He was an elected dictator (aisymnetes) and was placed in power to sort out the ever growing problem that was happening between all social classes. He was chosen for this job due to the fact that he was born into a noble class; though he was perhaps he was a second son but didn't inherit the family estate. He was a trader by occupation, and had a good working knowledge of economics; he then became even better known when he became an Archon. There were several reasons as to why there was a problem 1. Those who were in dept were growing in numbers and demanded a redistribution of the land. 2. Political rows between families were beginning to disrupt Athens 3. Tyrannies had been set up in neighbouring states 4. There had been an attempted tyranny by Cylon which failed due to lack of support. Solon had been brought in by the nobles to try to stop the ever growing worry of a revolt occurring. Some nobles realised that that there would have to be some loss for the nobles if they were to keep their wealth and lose the idea of a revolution. ...read more.

Middle

The lower classes that were given back their freedom were unhappy also as though they were given their freedom they were not 'free' they went without certain things * They had no land the ones that had land had very little and ended up being unhappy. * The slaves that were formerly slaves are given freedom and end up going back to their masters as they do not know what to do. He also managed to change the whole of the government system of modern Athens. He wished to give all the poorer classes a little more chance to have a say in the running of the Athenian way of life. He wished to increase the trading ability of Athens and turn it into the #1 trading city in Greece. So to do this he did a few things, 1. He introduced a new standard of coinage, weights and measures. The silver mines were developed fully now. 2. It was against the law to be idle, if a man wanted an easy life when he got old he needed to teach his son a trade. 3. He also encouraged foreigners from other countries to come in only those with a particular skill and only form within Greece. This would help people to learn trades that would help in trade. ...read more.

Conclusion

Some call him the 'Father' of democracy; I would tend to disagree with this. Admittedly he paved the way for it but he certainly did not begin it off. He was close, properly the closest the closest he got to democracy was the council of the 400 (Boula) So did Solon achieve much throughout his time as an Archon, we must remember he did * Encouraged foreigners from other countries to come in only those with a particular skill and only form within Greece. This would help people to learn trades that would help in trade * Removed all debts and gave back the freedom to people that were put into slavery through debts. * Solon brought back slaves that were sold to foreign countries and brought them back to their home land as free men. * He introduced a new standard of coinage, weights and measures. The silver mines were developed fully now. * He encouraged Athens to become a trading capital of Greece and therefore increase her wealth in economy. In my eyes what Solon achieved was a great amount in less then a year, it must have taken a lot of imagination and time to think up of how and what to do with the problem. He tackled the problems well and head on, he did well for Athens, even though it wasn't wholly popular he did a good job in stopping the problem of a revolt and brining and anarchy like crisis. ...read more.

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