“It is manifest therefore that a state is not merely the sharing of a common locality for the purpose of preventing mutual injury and exchanging goods. These are necessary preconditions of a state’s existence, yet nevertheless, even if all these conditions are present, that does not therefore make a state, but a state is a partnership of families and of clans in living well, and its object is a full and independent life.”
Because it is clear that a “a partnership of families and clans” can only be realized in if the partners all live in the same place and practice intermarriage.
Aristotle argues that the existence of families, brotherhoods, religious organizations, or social and recreational groups are necessary but not sufficient to the survival of the state.
The purpose of all of the state’s component organizations are means to an end: to satisfy human happiness, or, as Aristotle puts it, to achieve the state of a “good life.” A state is the partnership of clans and villages in a full and independent life, which in Aristotle’s view constitutes a happy and noble life.
Aristotle’s view of the state reflects the common ancient sentiment that the state is a means to an end to help the people achieve the “good life.” The political fellowship must therefore be deemed to exist for the sake of noble actions, not merely as a necessity for living in common.
This Aristotelian moral view of life in the Polis suggests a meritocratic ethic far ahead of its time. Instead of status by birthright, Aristotle implies that those who contribute most to the Polis should have a larger role in the state.
This short work has presented a panoramic overview of the economic and political status of the Ancient Greek Civilization. There have been presented the basic three pillar ideas, upon which the idea of the City State stood, and the way that they affected the lives and the actions of the Greek, as members of a society. Then followed a presentation with the way than most of the cities were organized socially and politically.
Afterwards, there was a presentation of the economic life of the Polis. The exploitation of the land and of the mineral wealth. Also of war as a source of income. Finally there was an examination of the free trade between the cities and of the way the markets functioned.
Without taking into account the currency, and the way it was used this work would have been incomplete. Many paradigms and primary sources were presented so as to take an accurate closer view.
No one could deny the great influence of ancient Greece on the development of Western Civilization. It has spread through time and it had stretched across the earth.
Many ancient Greek contributions have persisted more or less unchanged into the modern era. As the poet Percy Shelley stated, “We are all Greeks”.
Ancient Greece has been always relevant, especially in changing times, like ours. It rests therefore upon shoulders to find a new lesson to teach ourselves, on the way we organize our societies.