What Did Government Do in Ancient Civilization?

Governments have existed since the beginning of civilization, and their role has changed significantly over time. In ancient times, governments played a crucial role in shaping society and ensuring its survival. Let’s take a closer look at what governments did in ancient civilizations.


Mesopotamia is considered as one of the earliest civilizations in the world. The government system in Mesopotamia was characterized by city-states ruled by monarchs.

These monarchs played a significant role in shaping society as they were responsible for maintaining law and order. They also ensured that citizens had access to basic necessities like food and water.

The government also created laws to regulate societal behavior. These laws dealt with issues such as property ownership, crime, and family relations. The code of Hammurabi is an excellent example of this type of law-making in Mesopotamia.


The government system in ancient Egypt was centered around pharaohs who were considered divine beings. The pharaohs were responsible for maintaining Ma’at, which was the concept of balance and harmony in Egyptian society.

In addition to this, the government also played a crucial role in managing resources such as agriculture and water supply. The construction of massive irrigation systems like canals and dams helped ensure food security for citizens.


The ancient Greeks are known for their contributions to democracy, which is still used by many countries today. Athens is considered to be the birthplace of democracy where all male citizens had equal rights to participate in decision-making processes.

Apart from democracy, the Greek government also played a vital role in promoting art, literature, and philosophy. Rulers like Pericles invested heavily in these fields to promote cultural development.


Rome’s government system was characterized by two consuls who were elected annually to govern the city-state. The Roman government played a significant role in expanding the empire by conquest and colonization.

The government also played a crucial role in ensuring public safety by maintaining law and order. The creation of a professional army helped ensure that citizens were protected from external threats.


In conclusion, ancient governments played a significant role in shaping society and ensuring its survival. They were responsible for maintaining law and order, managing resources, and promoting cultural development.

While the form of government varied across civilizations, their core responsibilities remained consistent. Understanding the role of ancient governments can help us appreciate the evolution of modern-day governments and their importance in our lives today.