Republicanism, Classical

Liberty has had many different meanings over the course of the history of the term. However, from the Renaissance through the Enlightenment, it commonly appeared as an element in the intellectual tradition that scholars now term classical republicanism. The classical republican tradition flourished throughout Europe from the 16th to the 18th centuries, and among its most notable exponents were Niccolö Machiavelli, Algernon Sidney, James Harrington, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Classical republicans drew heavily on ancient models and authorities, but they matched these models with new concerns and examples drawn from the world around them to create a distinct ideology that can be recognized in various forms throughout the history of European political thought.

Liberty in the classical republican context must be distinguished from both its modern and ...

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