Peloponnesian War Essay

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The Peloponnesian War Throughout the Ancient Greek world, there have been many wars and standoffs. However, the Peloponnesian War was the only one which changed the course of Greek history forever. Caused by the growing tension between Athens and Sparta, it came and left, leaving only destruction in its path. The defeat of Athens in the Peloponnesian War caused the downfall of Greece, and the end of the Classical Age. The roots of the Peloponnesian War can be traced back to as early as the Persian Wars, where the Athenians had found their home burned by the hands of the Persians. That disaster left the Athenians with no home and no sanctuary. Even though it was a defeated battle amidst a victorious war, they still had reason to believe that the Persians will come back for more. Apprehensive at the thought of having their city burned yet another time, the Athenians knew they had to do something. Naturally, they chose to get help. Gathering up the neighboring city-states around them, the Athenians formed the Delian League; an alliance working directly to defend the whole of Greece from Persian attacks (Kagan 8). In the beginning, this worked out well; everybody got their say on what went on in the league, and everybody was satisfied. However, the Athenians saw that if they were to take more power, the members of the league would not be strong enough to resist. Therefore, that was exactly what they did; they took more and more power until what was the Delian League became the Athenian Empire (Kagan 8). As they grew even more powerful and wealthy, their neighbors of Sparta and the Peloponnesian League, Sparta's alliance, could not help but notice (Kagan 13). In 431 BCE, lighted by the fire of jealousy and rage, the Spartans attacked ... ... middle of paper ... ...use of the Peloponnesian war that they were not able to defend themselves, and therefore, it was because of that they were conquered. In addition, at the end, not only Athens itself was conquered, but the arts and progress inside it, also. After the war, less discoveries and philosophers were being made, finally culminating in the rule of Alexander the Great, where the Classical Age was ended. Throughout the 28 years of the Peloponnesian War, the whole area was brought down to its knees. In the end, the destruction of Greece and the end of the Classical Age was caused by one event; the Peloponnesian War. Murdering many and leaving behind only a trail of destruction in its wake, this war changed the entire course of Ancient Greek history. Even though there were countless wars in Greek history, the Peloponnesian War was definitely the one with the most consequences.

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