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''Polis'' (, ; grc-gre, πόλις, ), plural ''poleis'' (, , ), literally means "
city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Routledge. It can be defined as a ...

city
" in Greek. In
Ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of Classical Antiquity, antiquity ( AD 600). This era wa ...
, it originally referred to an administrative and religious city center, as distinct from the rest of the city. Later, it also came to mean the body of citizens under a city's jurisdiction. In modern historiography, the term is normally used to refer to the ancient Greek city-states, such as
Classical Athens The city of Athens ( grc, Ἀθῆναι, ''Athênai'' Help:IPA/Greek, .tʰɛ̂ː.nai̯ Modern Greek: Αθήναι ''Athine'' or, more commonly and in singular, Αθήνα ''Athina'' .'θi.na during the Classical Greece, classical period ...
and its contemporaries, and thus is often translated as "
city-state A city-state is an independent sovereign Sovereign is a title which can be applied to the highest leader in various categories. The word is borrowed from Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance la ...
". This term, a
calque In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language, meaning that it is a comprehensive, systematic, objective, and precise study of language. Linguistics encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the me ...

calque
of the German ''Stadtstaat'', does not fully translate the Greek term. The ''poleis'' were not like other primordial ancient city-states like
Tyre Tyre may refer to: * Tire, the outer part of a wheel Places * Tyre, Lebanon, a city ** See of Tyre, a Christian diocese seated in Tyre, Lebanon ** Tyre Hippodrome, a UNESCO World Heritage site * Tyre District, Lebanon * Tyre, New York, a town in t ...
or
Sidon Sidon ( ), known locally as Sayda or Saida ( ar, صيدا), is the third-largest city in Lebanon Lebanon ( , ar, لُبْنَان, translit=lubnān, ), officially the Republic of Lebanon or the Lebanese Republic, is a country in Western A ...

Sidon
, which were ruled by a king or a small
oligarchy Oligarchy (; ) is a form of power structure A power structure is an overall system of influence between any individual and every other individual within any selected group of people. A description of a power structure would capture the way in w ...
; rather, they were political entities ruled by their bodies of citizens. The Ancient Greek ''poleis'' developed during the Archaic period as the ancestor of the Ancient Greek city, state and citizenship and persisted (though with decreasing influence) well into
Roman Roman or Romans most often refers to: *, the capital city of Italy *, Roman civilization from 8th century BC to 5th century AD *, the people of ancient Rome *', shortened to ''Romans'', a letter in the New Testament of the Christian Bible Roman ...

Roman
times, when the equivalent
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an appa ...

Latin
word was ''
civitas In the history of Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Lazio, Italy).svg , ma ...
'', also meaning "citizenhood", while ''
municipium Municipium (pl. municipia) is the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the p ...
'' in Latin meant a non-sovereign town or city. The term changed with the development of the governance centre in the city to mean "state" (which included the city's surrounding villages). Finally, with the emergence of a notion of citizenship among landowners, it came to describe the entire body of citizens under the city's jurisdiction. The body of citizens came to be the most important meaning of the term ''polis'' in ancient Greece. The Ancient Greek term that specifically meant the totality of ''urban'' buildings and spaces is ''
asty Asty ( gr, ἄστυ; ) is an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the follo ...
'' (). The Ancient Greek ''poleis'' consisted of an ''asty'' built on an
acropolis An acropolis (Ancient Greek: ἀκρόπολις, ''akropolis''; from ''akros'' (άκρος) or ''akron'' (άκρον), "highest, topmost, outermost" and ''polis'' (πόλις), "city"; plural in English: ''acropoles'', ''acropoleis'' or ''acropol ...

acropolis
or harbour and controlling surrounding territories of land ( ''
khôra ''Khôra'' (also ''chora''; grc, χώρα) was the territory of the Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is ...
''). The traditional view of archaeologists—that the appearance of
urbanisation Urbanization (or urbanisation) refers to the population shift from Rural area, rural to urban areas, the corresponding decrease in the proportion of people living in rural areas, and the ways in which societies adapt to this change. It is predom ...
at excavation sites could be read as a sufficient index for the development of a ''polis—''was criticised by French historian François Polignac in 1984 and has not been taken for granted in recent decades: the ''polis'' of
Sparta Sparta (Doric Greek Doric or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an . Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern as well as in , , , , , some islands in the southern and some cities on the south east coast of ...

Sparta
, for example, was established in a network of villages. The Ancient Greeks did not always refer to
Athens , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Clicking on an image in the picture causes the browser to load the appropriate article. rect 15 15 985 460 Acropolis of Athens rect 15 475 48 ...

Athens
, Sparta, Thebes, and other ''poleis'' as such; they often spoke instead of the Athenians,
Lacedaemonians Sparta (Doric Greek Doric or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an Ancient Greek dialect. Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern Peloponnese as well as in Sicily, Epirus, Southern Italy, Crete, Rhodes, some i ...
, Thebans and so on.


The ''polis'' in Ancient Greek philosophy

Plato Plato ( ; grc-gre, wikt:Πλάτων, Πλάτων ; 428/427 or 424/423 – 348/347 BC) was an Classical Athens, Athenian philosopher during the Classical Greece, Classical period in Ancient Greece, founder of the Platonist school of thoug ...

Plato
analyzes the ''polis'' in ''The Republic'', whose Greek title, Πολιτεία (
Politeia ''Politeia'' ( πολιτεία) is an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into t ...
), itself derives from the word ''polis''. The best form of government of the ''polis'' for Plato is the one that leads to the common good. The
philosopher king According to Plato Plato ( ; grc-gre, Πλάτων ; 428/427 or 424/423 – 348/347 BC) was an Athenian , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Clicking on an image in ...
is the best ruler because, as a philosopher, he is acquainted with the
Form of the Good "Form of the Good", or more literally "the idea of the good" () is a concept in the philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about existence Existence is the ability of an entity to ...
. In Plato's analogy of the
ship of state The Ship of State is a famous and oft-cited metaphor A metaphor is a figure of speech that, for rhetorical effect, directly refers to one thing by mentioning another. It may provide (or obscure) clarity or identify hidden similarities between t ...
, the philosopher king steers the ''polis'', as if it were a ship, in the best direction. Books II–IV of ''The Republic'' are concerned with Plato addressing the makeup of an ideal ''polis''. In ''The Republic'', Socrates is concerned with the two underlying principles of any society: mutual needs and differences in aptitude. Starting from these two principles, Socrates deals with the economic structure of an ideal ''polis''. According to Plato, there are five main economic classes of any ''polis'': producers, merchants, sailors/shipowners, retail traders, and wage earners. Along with the two principles and five economic classes, there are four virtues. The four virtues of a "just city" include wisdom, courage, moderation, and justice. With all of these principles, classes, and virtues, it was believed that a "just city" (''polis'') would exist.


Archaic and classical ''poleis''

The basic and indicating elements of a ''polis ''are: * Self-governance, autonomy, and independence (city-state) *
Agora Image:TyreAlMinaAgora.jpg, upAgora of Tyre, Lebanon, Tyre The agora (; grc, ἀγορά ''agorá'') was a central public space in ancient Ancient Greece, Greek polis, city-states. It is the best representation of a city-state's response to accom ...

Agora
: the social hub and financial marketplace, on and around a centrally located, large open space *
Acropolis An acropolis (Ancient Greek: ἀκρόπολις, ''akropolis''; from ''akros'' (άκρος) or ''akron'' (άκρον), "highest, topmost, outermost" and ''polis'' (πόλις), "city"; plural in English: ''acropoles'', ''acropoleis'' or ''acropol ...

Acropolis
: the citadel, inside which a temple had replaced the erstwhile Mycenaean ''anáktoron'' (
palace A palace is a grand residence, especially a royal residence, or the home of a or some other high-ranking dignitary, such as a or . The word is derived from the name palātium, for in Rome which housed the residences. Most European languages ...

palace
) or
''mégaron''
''mégaron''
(hall) * Greek urban planning and architecture, public, religious, and private (see Hippodamian plan) *
Temples A temple (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the R ...

Temples
,
altar An altar is a structure upon which offerings such as sacrifice Sacrifice is the offering of material possessions or the lives of animals or humans to a deity A deity or god is a supernatural The supernatural encompasses supposed phe ...

altar
s, and sacred precincts: one or more are dedicated to the ''poliouchos'', the patron deity of the city; each ''polis'' kept its own particular
festival A festival is an event ordinarily celebrated by a community and centering on some characteristic aspect of that community and its religion or cultures. It is often marked as a local or national holiday, mela, or Muslim holidays, eid. A festiva ...

festival
s and customs (''
Political religion A secular religion is a communal belief system that often rejects or neglects the metaphysical aspects of the supernatural, commonly associated with traditional religion, instead placing typical religious qualities in earthly entities. Among system ...
'', as opposed to the individualized religion of later antiquity). Priests and priestesses, although often drawn from certain families by tradition, did not form a separate collegiality or class; they were ordinary citizens who on certain occasions were called to perform certain functions. * Gymnasia *
Theatres Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of performing art that uses live performers, usually actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a specific place, often a stage. The performe ...
* Walls: used for protection from invaders *
Coins A coin is a small, flat, (usually, depending on the country or value) round piece of metal A metal (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hell ...
: minted by the city, and bearing its symbols *
Colonies In political science, a colony is a territory subject to a form of foreign rule. Though dominated by the foreign colonizers, colonies remain separate from the administration of the original country of the colonizers, the metropole, metropolitan ...
being founded by the
oikistes The ''oikistes'' ( gr, οἰκιστής), often anglicized Linguistic anglicisation (or anglicization, occasionally anglification, anglifying, or Englishing) is the practice of modifying foreign words, names, and phrases to make them easier to ...
of the
metropolis A metropolis () is a large city or conurbation which is a significant economic, political, and cultural center for a country or region, and an important hub for regional or international connections, commerce, and communications. A big city ...

metropolis
* Political life: it revolved around the sovereign Ekklesia (the assembly of all adult male citizens for deliberation and voting), the standing boule and other civic or judicial councils, the
archon ''Archon'' ( gr, ἄρχων, árchōn, plural: ἄρχοντες, ''árchontes'') is a Greek word that means "ruler", frequently used as the title of a specific public office. It is the masculine present participle of the verb stem αρχ-, meanin ...

archon
s and other officials or magistrates elected either by vote or by lot,
clubs Club may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media * Club (magazine), ''Club'' (magazine) * Club, a ''Yie Ar Kung-Fu'' character * Clubs (suit), a suit of playing cards * Club music * "Club", by Kelsea Ballerini from the album ''kelsea'' Brands an ...
, etc., and sometimes punctuated by
stasis Stasis (from Greek στάσις "a standing still") may refer to: * A state in stability theory In mathematics Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), mathematical structure, s ...
(civil strife between parties, factions or socioeconomic classes, e.g., aristocrats, oligarchs, democrats, tyrants, the wealthy, the poor, large, or small landowners, etc.). They practised
direct democracy Direct democracy or pure democracy is a form of democracy in which the Election#Electorate, electorate decides on policy initiatives without legislator, legislative representatives as proxies. This differs from the majority of currently estab ...
. * Publication of state functions: laws, decrees, and major fiscal accounts were published, and criminal and civil trials were also held in public. *
Synoecism Synoecism or synecism ( ; grc, συνοικισμóς, ''sunoikismos'', ), also spelled synoikism ( ), was originally the amalgamation of villages in Ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging ...
, conurbation: Absorption of nearby villages and countryside, and the incorporation of their tribes into the substructure of the ''polis''. Many of a ''polis''' citizens lived in the suburbs or countryside. The Greeks regarded the ''polis'' less as a territorial grouping than as a religious and political association: while the ''polis'' would control territory and colonies beyond the city itself, the ''polis'' would not simply consist of a geographical area. Most cities were composed of several
tribe The term tribe is used in many different contexts to refer to a category of human social group. The predominant usage of the term is in the discipline of anthropology. The definition is contested, in part due to conflicting theoretical understa ...

tribe
s or ''
phylai ''Phyle'' ( gr, φυλή, phulē, "tribe, clan"; pl. ''phylai'', φυλαί; derived from ancient Greek φύεσθαι "to descend, to originate") is an ancient Greek term for tribe The term tribe is used in many different contexts to refer to ...
'', which were in turn composed of ''
phratries In ancient Greece, a phratry ( grc, φρᾱτρῐ́ᾱ, phrātríā, brotherhood, kinfolk, derived from grc, φρᾱ́τηρ, phrā́tēr, brother, links=no) was a group containing citizens in some city-states. Their existence is known in most Ion ...
'' (common-ancestry lineages), and finally ''
''génea''
''génea''
'' (extended families). * Social classes and citizenship: Dwellers of the ''polis'' were generally divided into four types of inhabitants, with status typically determined by birth: ** Citizens with full legal and
political rights Civil and political rights are a class of rights that protect individuals' political freedom, freedom from infringement by governments, social organizations, and private individuals. They ensure one's entitlement to participate in the civil and p ...
: that is, free adult men born legitimately of citizen parents. They had the
right to vote Suffrage, political franchise, or simply franchise, is the right to vote in public, political elections (although the term is sometimes used for any right to vote). In some languages, and occasionally in English, the right to vote is called ac ...
, be elected into office, and
bear arms The right to keep and bear arms (often referred to as the right to bear arms) is a right for people to possess weapons (arms) for their own defense. Only a few countries recognize an individual right to keep and bear arms and protect it constit ...
, and the obligation to serve when at war. ***
Ephebos ''Ephebos'' (ἔφηβος) (often in the plural ''epheboi''), also anglicised as ''ephebe'' (plural: ''ephebes'') or archaically ''ephebus'' (plural: ''ephebi''), is a Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or rela ...
** Citizens without formal political rights but with full legal rights: the citizens' female relatives and underage children, whose political rights and interests were meant to be represented by their adult male relatives. ** Citizens of other ''poleis'' who chose to reside elsewhere (the
metic In ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of Classical Antiquity, antiquity ( AD ...
s, μέτοικοι, ''métoikoi'', literally "transdwellers"): though free-born and possessing full rights in their place of origin, they had full legal rights but no political rights in their place of residence. Metics could not vote or be elected to office. A liberated slave was likewise given a metic's status if he chose to remain in the polis, at least that was the case in Athens. They otherwise had full personal and property rights, albeit subject to taxation. **
Slave Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who is someone forbidden to quit their service for an enslaver, and who is treated by the enslaver as their property Property is a system of rights that gives ...

Slave
s: chattel in full possession of their owner, and with no privileges other than those that their owner would grant (or revoke) at will.


Polis during Hellenistic and Roman times

During the
Hellenistic period The Hellenistic period covers the period of Mediterranean history between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the emergence of the Roman Empire, as signified by the Battle of Actium in 31 BC and the conquest of Ptolemaic ...
, which marks the decline of the classical ''polis'', the following cities remained independent:
Sparta Sparta (Doric Greek Doric or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an . Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern as well as in , , , , , some islands in the southern and some cities on the south east coast of ...

Sparta
until 195 BC after the
War against Nabis The Laconian War of 195 BC was fought between the Greek city-state of Sparta Sparta (Doric Greek Doric, or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an Ancient Greek dialect. Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern ...
.
Achaean League The Achaean League (Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 m ...
is the last example of original Greek city-state federations (dissolved after the
Battle of Corinth (146 BC)The Battle of Corinth or the Siege of Corinth may refer to: Battles * Battle of Corinth (146 BC)The Battle of Corinth or the Siege of Corinth may refer to: Battles * Battle of Corinth (146 BC), in ancient Greece * Battle of Nemea The Battle of ...
). The
Cretan Crete ( el, Κρήτη, translit=, Modern Modern may refer to: History *Modern history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed by archaeology Archaeology or archeology i ...
city-states continued to be independent (except Itanus and Arsinoe, which lay under Ptolemaic influence) until the conquest of Crete in 69 BC by Rome. The cities of
Magna Graecia Magna Graecia (, ; Latin meaning "Greater Greece", grc, Μεγάλη Ἑλλάς, ', it, Magna Grecia) was the name given by the Roman people, Romans to the coastal areas of Southern Italy in the present-day regions of Campania, Apulia, Basilicat ...

Magna Graecia
, with the notable examples of
Syracuse Syracuse may refer to: Places Italy *Syracuse, Sicily Syracuse ( ; it, Siracusa , or scn, Seragusa, label=none ; lat, Syrācūsae ; grc-att, wikt:Συράκουσαι, Συράκουσαι, Syrákousai ; grc-dor, wikt:Συράκοσ ...

Syracuse
and Tarentum, were conquered by Rome in the late 3rd century BC. There are also some cities with recurring independence like
Samos Samos (, also ; el, Σάμος ) is a Greece, Greek island in the eastern Aegean Sea, south of Chios, north of Patmos and the Dodecanese, and off the coast of western Turkey, from which it is separated by the -wide Mycale Strait. It is also a sep ...

Samos
,
Priene Priene ( grc, Πριήνη, Priēnē; tr, Prien) was an Ancient Greece, ancient Greek city of Ionia (and member of the Ionian League) located at the base of an escarpment of Mycale, about north of what was then the course of the Maeander River ...

Priene
,
Miletus Miletus (; gr, Μῑ́λητος, Mīlētos; Hittite Hittite may refer to: * Hittites, ancient Anatolian people ** Hittite language, the earliest-attested Indo-European language ** Hittite grammar ** Hittite phonology ** Hittite cuneiform ** ...
, and
Athens , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Clicking on an image in the picture causes the browser to load the appropriate article. rect 15 15 985 460 Acropolis of Athens rect 15 475 48 ...
. A remarkable example of a city-state that flourished during this era is
Rhodes Rhodes (; el, Ρόδος, translit=Ródos ) is the largest of the Dodecanese The Dodecanese (, ; el, Δωδεκάνησα, ''Dodekánisa'' , literally "twelve islands") are a group of 15 larger plus 150 smaller Greek islands in the sout ...

Rhodes
, through its merchant navy, until
43 BC __NOTOC__ Year 43 BC was either a common year starting on Sunday A common year starting on Sunday is any non-leap year A leap year (also known as an intercalary year or wikt:bissextile, bissextile year) is a calendar year that contains an additi ...

43 BC
and the Roman conquest. The Hellenistic
colonies and cities
colonies and cities
of the era retain some basic characteristics of a ''polis'', except the status of independence (
city-state A city-state is an independent sovereign Sovereign is a title which can be applied to the highest leader in various categories. The word is borrowed from Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance la ...
) and the political life. There is self-governance (like the new Macedonian title politarch), but under a ruler and king. The political life of the classical era was transformed into an individualized religious and philosophical view of life (see Hellenistic
philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about Metaphysics, existence, reason, Epistemology, knowledge, Ethics, values, Philosophy of mind, mind, and Philosophy of language, language. Such questio ...
and
religion Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion. Different religions may or may not contain v ...
). Demographic decline forced the cities to abolish the status of
metic In ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9th centuries BC to the end of Classical Antiquity, antiquity ( AD ...
and bestow citizenship; in 228 BC,
Miletus Miletus (; gr, Μῑ́λητος, Mīlētos; Hittite Hittite may refer to: * Hittites, ancient Anatolian people ** Hittite language, the earliest-attested Indo-European language ** Hittite grammar ** Hittite phonology ** Hittite cuneiform ** ...
enfranchised over 1,000 Cretans.
Dyme Dyme ( grc, Δύμη), or Dymae, was a town and polis (city-state) of ancient Achaea, and the most westerly of the 12 Achaean cities, from which circumstance it is said to have derived its name. It was situated near the coast, according to Strabo 6 ...
sold its citizenship for one talent, payable in two installments. The foreign residents in a city are now called paroikoi. In an age when most political establishments in Asia are kingdoms, the
Chrysaorian LeagueThe Chrysaorian League ( grc, σύστημα Χρυσαορικόν, ''systema Chrysaorikon'') was an informal loose federation of several cities in ancient region of Caria, Anatolia that was apparently formed in the early Seleucid Empire, Seleucid p ...
in Caria was a Hellenistic federation of ''poleis''. During the
Roman era In , ancient Rome is civilization from the founding of the Italian city of in the 8th century BC to the collapse of the in the 5th century AD, encompassing the (753 BC–509 BC), (509 BC–27 BC) and (27 BC–476 AD) until the fall of ...
, some cities were granted the status of a ''polis'', or free city, self-governed under the Roman Empire.. The last institution commemorating the old Greek ''poleis'' was the Panhellenion, established by Hadrian.


Derived words

Derivatives of ''polis'' are common in many modern
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continents. Ordered ...

Europe
an languages. This is indicative of the influence of the ''polis''-centred Hellenic world view. Derivative words in English include
policy Policy is a deliberate system of guideline A guideline is a statement by which to determine a course of action. A guideline aims to streamline particular processes according to a set routine or sound practice. Guidelines may be issued by an ...

policy
,
polity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized social relation, social relations, and have a capacity to mobilize resourc ...
,
police The police are a constituted body of persons A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason Reason is the capacity of consciously applying logic by Logical consequence, drawing con ...

police
, and
politics Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, such as the distribution of res ...

politics
. In
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
, words deriving from ''polis'' include ''politēs'' and ''politismos'', whose exact equivalents in
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an appa ...
,
Romance Romance (from Vulgar Latin , "in the Roman language", i.e., "Latin") may refer to: Common meanings * Romance (love) Romance or Romantic love is an emotional feeling of love for, or a strong attraction towards another person, and the Court ...

Romance
, and other European languages, respectively ''civis'' ("citizen"), ''civilisatio'' ("civilisation"), etc., are similarly derived. A number of words end in ''-polis''. Most refer to a special kind of city or state. Examples include: * Astropolis – a star-scaled city/industry area; a complex space station; a European star-related festival * Cosmopolis (disambiguation), Cosmopolis – a large urban centre with a population of many different cultural backgrounds; a novel written by Don DeLillo * Ecumenopolis – a city that covers an entire planet, usually seen in science fiction * Megalopolis (city type), Megalopolis – created by the merging of several cities and their suburbs * Metropolis – the mother city of a colony; the see of a metropolitan archbishop; a metropolitan area (major urban population centre) * Necropolis ("city of the dead") – a graveyard * Technopolis (disambiguation), Technopolis – a city with high-tech industry; a room of computers; the Internet Others refer to part of a city or a group of cities, such as: *
Acropolis An acropolis (Ancient Greek: ἀκρόπολις, ''akropolis''; from ''akros'' (άκρος) or ''akron'' (άκρον), "highest, topmost, outermost" and ''polis'' (πόλις), "city"; plural in English: ''acropoles'', ''acropoleis'' or ''acropol ...

Acropolis
("high city") – the upper part of a ''polis'', often a citadel or the site of major temples * Decapolis – a group of ten cities * Decapolis (disambiguation), Dodecapolis – a group of twelve cities * Pentapolis – a group of five cities * Tripolis (disambiguation), Tripolis – a group of three cities, retained in the names of Tripoli in Libya, in Greece, and a namesake in Lebanon


Names


Polis, Cyprus

Located on the northwest coast of Cyprus is the town of Polis, Cyprus, Polis, or Polis Chrysochous ( el, Πόλις Χρυσοχούς), situated within the Paphos District and on the edge of the Akamas, Akamas peninsula. During the Cypro-Classical period, Polis became one of the most important ancient Cypriot city-kingdoms on the island, with important commercial relations with the eastern Aegean Islands, Attica, and Corinth. The town is also well known due to its Greek Mythology, mythological history, including the site of the Baths of Aphrodite.


Other cities

The names of several other towns and cities in
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continents. Ordered ...

Europe
and the Middle East have contained the suffix ''-polis'' since antiquity or currently feature modernized spellings, such as ''-pol''. Notable examples include: * Acropolis, Athens, Acropolis ("high city"),
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Athens
, Greece – although not a city-polis by itself, but a fortified citadel that consisted of functional buildings and the Temple in honor of the city-sponsoring god or goddess. The Athenian acropolis was the most famous of all acropoleis in the ancient Greek World and its main temple was the Parthenon, in honor of Athena Parthenos (Athena the Virgin). * Adrianopolis or Adrianople ("Hadrian's city"), present-day Edirne, Turkey * Alexandroupolis ("Alexander of Greece, Alexander's city"), Greece * Alexandropol ("Alexandra Feodorovna (Charlotte of Prussia), Alexandra's city"), currently Gyumri, Armenia * Antipolis (disambiguation), Antipolis ("the city across"), the former name for Antibes, France * Constantinopolis or Constantinople ("Constantine I, Constantine's city"), the former name for Istanbul, Turkey. * Istanbul (derived from the Greek phrase "εἰς τὴν Πόλιν" meaning "to the city"), Turkey. * Istropolis, currently Bratislava, Slovakia. * Heliopolis ("Helios, Sun city") in Heliopolis (Ancient Egypt), ancient and Heliopolis (Cairo suburb), modern Egypt, Baalbek, Lebanon, and Heliopolis (Athens suburb), Greece * Herakleopolis Magna, Heracleopolis ("Hercules' city"), Egypt * Hermopolis (disambiguation), Hermopolis ("Hermes' city"), several cities in Egypt and on Siros Island * Hierakonpolis ("Hawk city"), Egypt * Hieropolis (disambiguation), Hieropolis ("Sacred city"), several cities in the Hellenistic world, in particular Hierapolis in southwestern Turkey * Megalopolis, Greece, Megalopolis ("Great city"), Greece * Mariupol, Ukraine, Mariupol ("Marios' City"), Ukraine (Greek: Μαριούπολης, ''Marioupolis'') * Neapoli (disambiguation), Neapolis ("New city"), several, including the modern cities of Nablus and Naples ( it, Napoli), and the adjective Neapolitan (disambiguation), Neapolitan * Philippopolis (disambiguation), Philippopolis ("Philip II of Macedon, Philip's city"), the former name for Plovdiv, Bulgaria. * Emmaus Nicopolis, Nicopolis ("Victory city"), Emmaus Nicopolis, Emmaus in Israel * Kamnik, Lithopolis ("Stone city"), Latin name for Kamnik, Slovenia * Persepolis ("city of the Persians"), Iran * Sevastopol ("Venerable city"), Crimea, Ukraine * Seuthopolis ("Seuthes (disambiguation), Seuthes' city"), Bulgaria * Simferopol ("city of common good"), Crimea, Ukraine * Sozopol ("Salvaged city"), Bulgaria * Stavropol ("city of the cross"), Russia * Tiraspol ("Dniester, Tiras' city"), Moldova The names of other cities were also given the suffix ''-polis'' after antiquity, either referring to ancient names or unrelated: * Anápolis, Goiás, Brazil * Annapolis, Maryland, United States * Biopolis, Singapore * Cambysopolis, Turkey * Kristianopel, Christianopel, Sweden * Cassopolis, Michigan, Cassopolis, Michigan, United States * Copperopolis, CA, Copperopolis, California, United States * Coraopolis, Pennsylvania, Coraopolis, Pennsylvania, United States * Demopolis, Alabama, Demopolis, Alabama, United States * Florianópolis ("Floriano Peixoto, Floriano's city"), Santa Catarina (state), Santa Catarina, Brazil * Gallipolis, Ohio, Gallipolis, Ohio, United States * Indianapolis, IN, Indianapolis, Indiana, United States * Kannapolis, NC, Kannapolis, North Carolina, United States * Lithopolis, Ohio, United States * Marijampolė, Lithuania * Metropolis, Illinois, Metropolis, Illinois, United States * Minneapolis, MN, Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States * Opolis, Kansas, Opolis, Kansas, United States * Petrópolis ("Pedro II of Brazil, Pedro's city"), Rio de Janeiro (state), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil * Penápolis, São Paulo (state), São Paulo, Brazil * Piopolis, Quebec, Piopolis, Quebec, Canada * Quirinópolis, Goiás, Brazil * Sebastopol, California, Sebastopol, California, United States * Sophia-Antipolis, France * Teresópolis ("Teresa Cristina of the Two Sicilies, Teresa's city"), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil * Teutopolis, Illinois, Teutopolis, Illinois, United States * Uniopolis, Ohio, Uniopolis, Ohio, United States * Thermopolis, Wyoming, Thermopolis, Wyoming, United States * Borrazópolis, Paraná (state), Parana, Brazil


See also

*
Synoecism Synoecism or synecism ( ; grc, συνοικισμóς, ''sunoikismos'', ), also spelled synoikism ( ), was originally the amalgamation of villages in Ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging ...
* ''The Other Greeks'' *List of ancient Greek cities


Notes


References


Further reading

* Ando, Clifford. 1999. "Was Rome a Polis?". ''Classical Antiquity'' 18.1: 5–34. * Brock, R., and S. Hodkinson, eds. 2000. ''Alternatives to Athens: Varieties of Political Organisation and Community in Ancient Greece.'' Oxford: Oxford University Press. * Davies, J. K. 1977–1978. "Athenian Citizenship: The Descent Group and the Alternatives." ''Classical Journal'' 73.2: 105–121. * Hall, J. M. 2007. "Polis, Community and Ethnic Identity." In ''The Cambridge Companion to Archaic Greece.'' Edited by H. A. Shapiro, 40–60. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. * Hansen, M. H., and T. H. Nielsen, eds. 2004. ''An Inventory of Archaic and Classical Poleis''. Oxford: Oxford University Press. * Hansen, M. H. 2006. ''Polis: An Introduction to the Ancient Greek City-State''. Oxford: Oxford University Press. * Hansen, M. H., ed. 1993. ''The Ancient Greek City-State: Symposium on the Occasion of the 250th Anniversary of the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters, July 1–4, 1992''. Copenhagen: Royal Danish Academy. * Hansen, M. H. 1999. ''The Athenian Democracy in the age of Demosthenes: Structure, Principles and Ideology''. 2nd ed. London: Bristol Classical Press. * Hansen, M. H., ed. 1997. ''The Polis as an Urban Centre and Political Community''. Copenhagen: Royal Danish Academy. * Jones, N. F. 1987. ''Public Organization in Ancient Greece: A Documentary Study''. Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society. * Kraay, C. M. 1976. ''Archaic and Classical Greek Coins''. Berkeley: University of California Press. * Millar, F. G. B. 1993. "The Greek City in the Roman Period". In ''The Ancient Greek City-State: Symposium on the Occasion of the 250th Anniversary of the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters, July 1–4, 1992''. Edited by M. H. Hansen, 232–260. Copenhagen: Royal Danish Academy. * Osborne, R. 2009. ''Greece in the Making''. 2nd ed. London: Routledge. * Polignac, F. de. 1995. ''Cults, Territory, and the Origins of the Greek City-State''. Translated by J. Lloyd. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. * van der Vliet, E. 2012. "The Durability and Decline of Democracy in Hellenistic Poleis". ''Mnemosyne'' 65.4–5: 771–786.


External links

*
The Copenhagen Polis Center
{{Authority control Greek city-states, * Ancient Greek cities, * City-states