Before voters in the United Kingdom opted to leave the European Union in 2016, the country observers felt most likely to do so was Greece. Reeling from the global financial meltdown that began in 2007 and then from the economic austerity measures imposed on it by Europe, many inside and outside Greece thought the best way forward would be to break from the EU. That crisis, however, was only the latest in a series. As historian Christopher Kinley explains, Greece has been plagued by a long history of debt crises that have hampered its growth and prosperity.

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