Compare And Contrast Ancient Sparta And Athens

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There was once an era when Greece was one of the most powerful empires intellectually and physically. Ancient Sparta and Athens, being two of the most popular city-states in Greece, were rivals. These two powerful states had different trademarks; “. . .Athenians boasted of their art and culture, Spartans valued strength and simplicity” (Frey 260). One contrast between the two city-states was the way they treated slaves. In Constitution of the Athenians, Pseudo-Xenophon wrote, “. . . they let the slaves live luxuriously.” The staff of wrote, “Spartans, who were outnumbered by the Helots, often treated them brutally and oppressively in an effort to prevent uprisings. Spartans would humiliate the Helots by doing such things as forcing…show more content…
Even the rulers of Sparta focused mainly on their military. Herodotus, an ancient Greek historian proclaimed, “These are the royal right which have been given by the Spartans to their kings, namely, two priesthood--of Zeos Spata and Zeos Uranios--and the right of making war against whatsoever and they please, and that no man of the Spartans shall hinder this right, or if he do, he shall be subject to the curse. . .” The rulers of Sparta had absolute power to make war with no one preventing it. Additionally, the Spartan government consisted of two kings. One king would stay at home governing the state while the other would go to fight. Evidently, the main problem for Sparta was that their military was the problem solver and creator. Therefore, the Spartan military was prepared for war. To remain prepared, the Spartans began military training for children at the age of seven and killed unhealthy infants. Once a male became the age of twenty he could become a full time soldier. The military remained in the lives of a male until the age of sixty. Military was the only sole occupation for men. Therefore, the society would not have been possible without the slaves/helots. To train children for military occupations, by terrorizing slaves and murdering trouble makers ( A unique quality of the Spartan military was their unbelievable loyalty to the military and unconditional bravery. The…show more content…
During the Greco-Persian Wars, the Spartans and Athens fought together against the powerful Persians. One of the reasons for the temporary alliance was the impressive navy of the Athens. Historian Thomas R. Martin asserted, “The peace struck in 446/445 formally ended the fighting, supposedly for thirty years. New disagreements that arose in the 430s over how each of the two states should treat the allies of the other led to the collapse of the peace, however.” This navy helped the Spartan Army and the Spartan Army helped the Athenian Army. However, after fighting together to defeat the Persians, the two rival city-states went back to their old ways of despising one another. Ultimately, both military forces collided in the Peloponnesian War which lasted nearly thirty years. This war was amongst Athens along with its empire and the Peloponnesian League which was led by the Spartans. Athenian historian, Thucydides, claimed that the reason of the war “. . . was the rise of the Athens to greatness, which made the Spartans fear for their own position.” The Spartans were the ones who declared war. Additionally, the Spartans had a superior army while the Athens had the advantage of its navy. The turning point of the war was not part of the battle; it was the plague which resulted in the death of one-third to two-thirds of Athens 's population. Ultimately, the Spartans won this war against the Athens. Unlike the Greco-Persian

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