The Great Sparta Civilization

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What most people would see as a small insignificant city-state of Greece today, Sparta thousands of years ago was an extremely powerful civilization. It was extremely small compared to most countries and cities in the twenty-first century. However, Sparta still maintains its respect, as its historical impacts are of epic proportions. Modern culture still has influences from ancient Sparta and Greece. Movies like 300 glorify the Spartans, and have built a strong reputation of Spartan even though this was so long ago. Many sports teams use Spartans as their mascots, because Spartans symbolize strength, bravery, and courage. Why is this?

Spartan Army

In ancient Greece, Spartans, or the Lacedaemonians, as they called to themselves, were considered to be the greatest army in the land. This reputation was achieved from multiple things. Spartans were well known for the agōgē, their rigorous military training. If you were a healthy male in ancient Sparta you were to forced to join. Many other Greek city-states were envious of Spartan war stories and of Spartan glory in battle, courage and honor. Most importantly, the other Greek poleis became aware of Sparta’s military’s power through firsthand experience of fighting alongside the Spartans in the Persian Wars, and later fighting against them in conflicts like the Peloponnesian War. Sparta’s reputation was built upon the brutality and intensive training that their young boys and men had to endure.

The way the Spartans treated teens and children is not something that would be condoned today, but it was reason for Spartan success. The Spartan way of life turned their strongest men into fearsome killing machines that raised fear into the eyes of their unfortunate opponents.

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... war.” Spartans valued honor and courage above all else. Every soldier wished to die a glorious death on the battlefield and at least taking someone else down with him. Plutarch tells about Spartan women being proud of their husbands in the army and, these women were reputed to have said often, “Return with it [soldier’s shield] or carried on it!” Sayings like these demonstrate the Spartan character very well. Be weak or a coward was not tolerated, and was the most egregious sin a citizen of Sparta could commit. Spartan men served initially until death as most soldiers wouldn’t make it past thirty years. If they did reach old age they would be honored even more greatly and be relived of their duties in the army. Spartans thrived of off their social status and how much others respected and honored them even though the Spartans only goal in life was to die for Sparta.
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