Why Solon recognize outstanding legislator of ancient Greece?

Why Solon recognize outstanding legislator of ancient Greece? Ancient Greek Solon (between 640 and 635 - 559 GG BC. E.) Refused to personally edit Athens, explaining his decision that "this place hard to leave, and for the State of tyranny can become evil." See Solon governor agreed to rich and poor. The poor man thought he was fair and hoped that he would hold the necessary reforms to the cancellation of debts and the return of land. Rich knew that he was a cautious man, a wealthy and respectable. In his poems he wrote about himself: "To be rich, I want to, but do not want to own dishonest. This wealth later hour for reckoning will come. "

Solon was elected archon (one of nine influential officials who govern the affairs of state) and mandated to mediate between various parties, empowered to create new laws and repeal or retain old ones. Solon strongly held reform, combining in his words "the power of justice and preserving old institutions as possible:" If in the state to turn everything upside down, then it is not strong enough to put everything into place. " When he later asked whether composed by the best laws for the Athenians, he answered: "Yes, the best of those which they could take."

First of all, Solon canceled all debts and this prevented the uprising of the poor, on the lands which were the pillars indicating the amount of debt and the payment deadline. Solon ordered to remove these poles, so that peasants could own to dispose of their crops. He not only prohibited in the future to pay Athenian citizens into slavery for debts, and ordered to find sold for debts abroad, and then redeem them at public expense. Solon was also a poet, turning often in verse to the citizens of Athens: "The land, which took off when I do a lot of pillars of debt, a slave before, but now is free ...".

Not all poor people were happy the new law - there were those who considered it inadequate, waiting for the division of land equally, but Solon believed. Soon, he justified the confidence of the people by abolishing the old laws Drakonta (draconian laws), for which even the most minor offense punishable by death. Then Solon divided the citizens of Athens into four classes by their income. The first three digits, served in the Army and to hold public office. The poor have the right to participate in the courts and in the assembly. They had no money to buy weapons, so they were mostly men in the boats. Solon made it the duty of the Supervisory Board (Areopagus) determine which means living every citizen, and punish slackers.

Supreme legislative power in Athens, Solon made the people's assembly. One of the oldest public institutions, he is responsible for monitoring the implementation of laws. To the State was not poor, he invented a law that his son could not feed the elderly father, if he has not learned his craft. Its laws were to act in a hundred years. They were written on wooden tables, enclosed in rectangles and were rotated for convenience. Solon decided to leave Athens for ten years, so that citizens are accustomed to the new laws. He made them swear that they will have no change in the law before his return.

Solon to travel: he visited Egypt, on the island of Cyprus and other countries. He invited me to visit the capital of Sardis in Asia Minor Lydian king Croesus. He was very wealthy and decided to surprise guests, opening their treasure, but Solon remained indifferent. Astonished, the king asked him: "Did you know anyone happier than me?" "Yes, he knew - Solon answered, - my fellow countryman Tella. He was honest, decent man and he died fighting for their homeland. Her children, he has trained so that they become good and respected citizens. " He cited more examples of happy people and the king was surprised by the fact that said nothing about wealth. Then Croesus asked Solon: "And I do not think you're happy?" "I do not know - he replied, - The gods have given us such a mind that does not allow to foresee the future. Lucky you can only call someone who had lived life to the end, it did not know sorrow and misery. Read the happy man, still living, - the same as proclaiming the winner of the warrior, the fight is not over yet. "

Soon, the Persian king Cyrus conquered Lydia, Croesus was taken prisoner, and it should have been burned at the stake. When the Lydian king was erected on the fire, he began to shout loudly: "O Solon ...". Cyrus was surprised and told to extinguish the flames and asked: "Why do you call in the last minutes of a Solon?". Kroes told the Persian king, only on fire, he realized how stupid it was to boast in front of the Greek sage with its many treasures, including their equal happiness. Wise words from Solon's life was saved Lydian king.

In Athens at this time, riots broke out: the poor demanded a redistribution of land and supported by a distant relative of Solon Pisistratus (their mothers were cousins), to promote full power - tyranny. With a large detachment Peisistratos captured Athenian fort and became sole ruler. His enemies had fled from Athens, but scandalized Solon act of his relatives. He went to the marketplace and became the shame of citizens to obey the tyrant: "Yesterday was so easy to prevent the emergence of tyranny. Now, when she grew up and matured, to eradicate it would be much harder. Friends urged Solon to run, but he refused, and, when asked what he hoped, he replied: "At his age". Peisistratos treated with respect for the sage and upheld most of its laws, obeying them, and setting an example of obedience, he wanted to Solon: "The law - one for all!".