What is a Citizen?
Citizen is an adjective that can designate what belongs to or related to the city or citizens. Also, as a citizen can be considered a person who is an inhabitant or native of a city. The word, in this sense, is derived from the Latin civĭtas, civitātis, which means ‘city’, and is composed with the suffix “-ano”, which indicates belonging or provenance.
As a noun, citizen is a word that is used to designate a person who has been born in a place (a town, a city, a country) and who, by virtue of this, is a member of an organized community. In this sense, a citizen is part of a State and, therefore, holder of rights and duties subject to its laws.
In the ancient world, mainly in the ancient Greek civil system , as a citizen only a very reserved category of people could be considered. As such, for an individual to be recognized as a citizen of a State, he had to meet a set of conditions, such as freedom, a certain level of wealth, social position, etc. In this sense, women, foreigners, and slaves were outside this category.
The most important turning point in the history of humanity regarding the right to citizenship was the Declaration of the Rights of Man, the work of the French Revolution, according to which all men were born free and equal.
Today the concept of citizen has expanded, including all natural persons in a country or region, or those who have developed a certain level of identity and belonging to the place where they operate daily and have legally gained citizenship. For its part, the European Council considers a person as a citizen who basically coexists in a society.