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By 800 BCE, various Greek city-states, sharing a language and a culture based on slavery, pioneered novel political cultures.
In the Greek city of Athens, by about 500 BCE, the male citizens who owned land began to elect their leaders.
These elections by the minority of a minority represent the first democracy in the world.
These polities existed side by side, sometimes warring with each other, at one time combining against an invading army from Persia.
Ancient Athens is known for its literary achievements in drama, history, and personal narrative.
The individual city-states did not usually see themselves as a single entity.
(The conqueror Alexander the Great, who called himself a Greek, actually was a native of the non-Greek state of Macedon.) The city-states of Greece became provinces of the Roman Empire in 27 BCE.
The city of Rome was founded (traditionally in the year 753 BCE).