The right to vote, in ancient Hellas, was reserved for only a hand full of people. In order to be eligible to vote on anything, you had to fulfill a good couple of criteria:

  • You had to be male
  • Both of your parents had to be Greek citizens
  • You had to be a landowner
  • You had to be an adult
  • In Athens, you needed to have completed your military training as ephebes
  • Also in Athens, your right to citizenship could not be under suspicion
This means that children, women, slaves, foreigners and landless men were not allowed to vote on any decision put in front of the assembly. Around 10 to 20 percent of the whole of the citizens of Athens could vote. this number gives a fair idea about the voting in ancient Hellas as a whole. But despite the limited voters, ancient Hellas, and especially Athens, was definitely a democracy. The word 'democracy' (δημοκρατία) is made up of two, Greek, words: dêmos (δῆμος), meaning 'people' and krátos (κράτος) meaning 'power' or 'force'. 

The right to vote, either looking at it from a modern or ancient perspective, is exactly that; a right, a privilege. Besides children, most of us now have the right to vote. We have a right to voice our opinion and make a stand. 

Make a stand today, America. The fate of the world depends on it.