Essay On Polybius Political Theory

1040 Words5 Pages
D’Angelo, Marcus Ancient History VII

I. What was Polybius’ political theory?

“... it is evident… we must regard as the best constitution a combination of...these three varieties” (Polybius, Histories, 6.3).

Interpretation: Polybius believed that the best form of government was a combination of monarchy, aristocracy, and democracy and that there was evidence to prove it.

“... they represent these three to be the sole varieties or rather to be the best” (Polybius, Histories, 6.3).

Interpretation: According to Polybius, these three varieties of government monarchy, aristocracy, and democracy were not the only three but rather the best three.

Analysis: According to Polybius, the best form of government was a combination of the three best governments, monarchy,
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What were the catalysts of political change?

“... habits… to envy… offence… to an outburst of hatred and passionate resentment” (Polybius, Histories, 6.7).

Interpretation: Emotions such as habits, envy, hatred, and resentment led to dissatisfaction and therefore the government changed. When people ruled, they ended up only satisfying themselves.

“They have become by this time so accustomed to equality and freedom of speech” (Polybius, Histories,
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What was Polybius’ perception of humans, society, and government?

“... they cease to raise themselves above their fellow-citizens... people most liable to this… the rich” (Polybius, Histories, 6.9).

Interpretation: Polybius stated that the citizens tried to be better than everyone and especially the rich. This showed that Polybius had a cynical way of looking at humans, government, and society.

“... it is impossible... each of these should not in course of time change into this vicious form” (Polybius, Histories, 6.10).

Interpretation: This stated that the government 's changing into its evil form was not good. People needed to be more stable with our governments. He stated that our government and people are

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