P. 1
Sparta: The City That Was Better Than Athens

Sparta: The City That Was Better Than Athens

4.5

|Views: 23,822|Likes:
Published by Sean Joudry
A report on the culture in Sparta, and why it was a greater city than its rival, Athens. There are various topics discussed throughout the paper.
A report on the culture in Sparta, and why it was a greater city than its rival, Athens. There are various topics discussed throughout the paper.

More info:

Published by: Sean Joudry on Jun 07, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

Availability:

Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as DOC, PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less

07/25/2013

pdf

text

original

Sparta was the greatest Greek polis in ancient times. For reasons why, read the following.

Once you are done reading, you too will agree. The Spartans trained their whole life to become military soldiers and fight. Some may criticize them for this, saying that they focused too much on military rather than the intellectual side of life. The ancient times was a very tough period of life. You had to defend yourself or risk being destroyed. Instead of wasting time writing, the Spartans trained, so that they could both defend themselves, and attack others. If Athens invented a new popcorn machine, and the Spartans wanted it, all they would have to do is march over, fight them, and then seize it. The mind may be power today, but back then, strength could get you anything that you wanted. And that is why Spartan society thrived. Whatever Athens had, Sparta could get through military strength. In all of Greece, women were treated with no respect, except for Sparta that is. If you went to Athens, women would be at home, cleaning the house, doing whatever their husbands told them to do. In Sparta, young girls went to school to learn how to read and write. And they also had a mind of their own. No, they would not get into large fights with their husbands, but they did say something if they had a statement on their mind. Women were also psychically trained to that they would stay in shape, they did this by learning gymnastics. In other Greek states, women had to stay indoors at all times, unless they were specifically told to go outside by their husband. That was no the case in Sparta, where women had much more freedom to go where they wanted to. Sparta was one of the first societies to give treat women with a fair amount of respect. Homosexuality was very common in Sparta. Many believe that this was the same case for all of Greece, but it was only widely spread in a small number of Greek states. The men of ancient Sparta were largely homosexual, or bisexual. This may be because men grew up with the same group of males throughout their entire life. From when they started training at the age of 7, to when they died in battle alongside of them in war. Bisexuality was also fairly common between women. Females would commonly have affairs with unmarried, young women. Sparta was a big stickler for perfection, especially when it came to their military and soldiers. They believed that if a soldier died in training, that it was for the best because they would never make a good soldier. To separate the strong from the weak, soldiers were trained for over 10 years in sometimes very dangerous tasks. When a child was born, he or she was check out by a council of advisors. They would look for physical imperfections on the baby. If they found any, then they would take the child and leave him in the woods or the mountains. Both men and women were physically trained to have a perfect body. Obesity was not allowed and was rare in Sparta. To be Spartan meant to be perfect.

In modern times such as present day, the Spartan government would be greatly criticized. This is mainly because the people of the Sparta did not have a lot of say of what happens. Because of the grip that the leaders of Sparta had over their polis, they were able to counteract a rebellion constructed by the helots. The Spartan leaders realized that they needed a new reputation, they needed to be taken seriously. So Sparta turned into somewhat of a warlike boot camp. Here young men were trained at a young age to fight. These men then became legendary fighting machines. Even though the Spartan army was not much bigger than other polis’s armies, they were more feared. The Spartans had a reputation of being ruthless enemies and city-states feared that they would be attacked by the great Spartans. The Spartans gained respect throughout Greece through their dedication to the art of war, and their skill in it. The Spartan form of government may not be a good form in present day, but in ancient Greece, their government was much more efficient than the Athenian democracy. It was a time of war back then, and the world was still new. If you were not taken seriously and looked on with respect, you would perish. The word “Spartan” means ‘bare bones’, or ‘minimal’. This same word can be used to describe the ancient city of Sparta, along with their people. Spartans did not need food on a regular basis, they did not need a strong iron sword, they made due with what they had. It helped that they were trained to do this at such a young age. Athens may still be around present day, but Sparta had enough influence over the world to create its on adjective. The Spartans were descendants of the ‘Dorians’. They were a very warlike race back in their time. The Spartans were very proud of their heritage, and were a stickler for having Dorian blood flowing through them, and this was for a good reason. The Dorians were reckless and great soldiers. These characteristics are shared among all Spartans. The Spartans came from a great warriors, what about the Athenians? It was important in Spartan society to produce a son. If a man did not have a son, actions were taken in order to pressure the man into doing so. These men who did not have sons were called “Agamoi”. These men were excluded from a main Spartan festival called “Gymnopaidai”. This was an important event that the soldiers looked forward to. They were also treated with little respect in society. At public gatherings, they would be forced to give their seats to both younger men, all because they did not have a child. This was good for the Spartan polis, because if men did not continue to have children, they would soon run out of soldiers. Athens did not have a rule such as this, allowing men to slack off and not contribute to Athenian society if they wished not to. The most important fact about the Spartans is that without them, Greece would be a dead civilization. Back in ancient times when the Persians attacked Greece, Sparta fought off around a million troops from Asia. With their immense training, they destroyed the oncoming Persian threat. If it was not for them, all of Greece would have been

destroyed. Whether you are in favor of Athens or Sparta, you must admit that the Spartans were the saviors of Greek society. In modern times such as present day, the Spartan government would be greatly criticized. This is mainly because the people of the Sparta did not have a lot of say of what happens. Because of the grip that the leaders of Sparta had over their polis, they were able to counteract a rebellion constructed by the helots. The Spartan leaders realized that they needed a new reputation, they needed to be taken seriously. So Sparta turned into somewhat of a warlike boot camp. Here young men were trained at a young age to fight. These men then became legendary fighting machines. Even though the Spartan army was not much bigger than other polis’s armies, they were more feared. The Spartans had a reputation of being ruthless enemies and city-states feared that they would be attacked by the great Spartans. The Spartans gained respect throughout Greece through their dedication to the art of war, and their skill in it. The Spartan form of government may not be a good form in present day, but in ancient Greece, their government was much more efficient than the Athenian democracy. It was a time of war back then, and the world was still new. If you were not taken seriously and looked on with respect, you would perish.

I think that if you look at all of the information above, you will realize that Sparta was much better than Athens. Yes, Athens may have been a little more artistic, and a little more innovative. But instead of focusing on that, Sparta did what was best in the ancient world, and they put together a great military for the purpose of surviving. Sparta would not have been a militaristic capital if it were not for the Helot riot. The only reason that Sparta became a giant military was to protect themselves, not to become evil barbarians as some may picture them. They were the best in the business, if you wanted to win a war, you got the Spartans. If you wanted the toughest guy out there, you wanted a Spartan. They were respected throughout Greece for their military power, and their devotion to the art of war, the art that helped them survive. They may be criticized for their focus on war and not art, but back then, if you weren’t able to fight, you died. Today, the United Nations protects the countries of the world, so instead of being paranoid and building a giant military, they can focus on creating new inventions. Back then, it was not a time to think up how to fly. You had to focus on whether or not you and your brothers would be alive the next day. Spartans took a step towards modern society by giving women rights, and by having open homosexuality. Women were not commonly beaten, and they were looked upon with much more respect that in their rival city of Athens. They were not just bearers of children, but actual people. Also in Sparta, homosexuality was an open subject. It was not hidden and underground, and it was common amongst most men, and some women. In Athens, if a man was gay, he was quiet about it, and didn’t flaunt it amongst everyone. If you look back on Sparta, you picture a great city, one that spreads its influence into present day. If you hear the word ‘Sparta’, you think of something tough, and strong. That is exactly what Sparta was, a tough, strong, powerful race. One that will never be forgotten mainly because of their strong military characteristic.

You're Reading a Free Preview

Download
scribd
/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->