Abstract and Keywords
This article moves past the Renaissance to the Enlightenment and, in particular, to the French Revolution, which crystallized an important, if not fully understood, moment in the history of Hellenism. It shows how the writings of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the inspiration for so many of the French revolutionaries, were simultaneously proto-democratic and pro-Spartan. In this respect, Rousseau marks a complex breakthrough in the political traditions of Hellenism, which were, for much of European history until the eighteenth century, anti-democratic and pro-Spartan.
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