What Type of Monarchy Was Ancient Greece?

Ancient Greece was a civilization that flourished from the period of 750 BC to 146 BC. During this time, the Greeks were ruled by monarchs who held absolute power over their subjects. However, the type of monarchy that existed in Ancient Greece varied from region to region and evolved over time.

Monarchy in Ancient Greece

The term monarchy comes from the Greek words ‘monos’ meaning one and ‘arkhein’ meaning to rule. Monarchy was a system of government where a single person, known as the monarch, held supreme power and authority over a kingdom or empire. In Ancient Greece, monarchs were often seen as divine figures with special connections to the gods.

The Mycenaean Monarchy

The Mycenaean civilization was one of the earliest civilizations in Ancient Greece. The Mycenaean monarchy was characterized by a strong central government led by a king who held absolute power over his subjects. The king was responsible for making all major decisions, including matters related to trade, warfare, and religion.

The Spartan Monarchy

The Spartan monarchy was unique in that it had two kings ruling jointly over the city-state. The two kings held equal powers and had their own separate responsibilities. One king would take charge of military affairs while the other would be responsible for civil affairs.

The Athenian Monarchy

Athens was one of the most powerful city-states in Ancient Greece, and its early history was marked by periods of kingship. However, the Athenian monarchy gradually gave way to democracy as power shifted towards elected officials and assemblies.


In conclusion, Ancient Greece had various types of monarchy depending on the region and time period. From strong central governments like those found in Mycenae to dual rule in Sparta and gradual shift towards democracy in Athens. The use of monarchy was eventually replaced by other forms of government, and the legacy of Ancient Greece continues to influence modern politics and society in numerous ways.