al city as Athens furnished a school of political training superior to anything else that the world has ever seen.
It was something like what the New England town-meeting would be if it were continually required to adjust complicated questions of international polity, if it were carried on in the very centre or point of confluence of all contemporary streams of culture, and if it were in the habit every few days of listening to statesmen and orators like Hamilton or Webster, jurists like Marshall, generals like Sherman, poets like Lowell, historians like Parkman.
Nothing in all history has approached the high-wrought intensity and brilliancy of the political life of Athens.
On the other hand, the smallness of the independent city, as a political aggregate, made it of little or no use in diminishing the liability to perpetual warfare which is the curse of all primitive communities.
In a group of independent cities, such as made up the Hellenic world, the tendency to warfare is a