Ancient Sparta

by: A. Santich

Who was associated with Sparta

Sparta had many kings. Here are some stories about them.
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The story of Lykurgos becoming king

Lykurgos' dad, Eumenos, who was the king, died so Lykurgos' older brother became king. Soon after his brother died, so Lykurgos became king. Legend tells that his sister in law was pregnant(so assuming the baby was a boy, he would become king). She came up to Lykurgos and said that if he would marry her she would kill the child so that he could stay king. Lykurgos said yes, but instead of killing the baby right away he did the Greek tradition by naming the child in front of all the Spartan men.
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Leonidas and the Battle of Thermopylae

Leonidas lead the Spartan army in the Battle of Thermopylae. Leonidas ruled Sparta from 530BC to 480BC. In the battle the Spartans were outnumbered by the Persians. Although they fought hard for three days, eventually all 300 soldiers died along with Leonidas. Their sacrifice led the rest of the Greek army to a win over the Persians.

What was life in Sparta like?

Life in Sparta was very different from other ancient city-states. Sparta's education was based around military. Because of Sparta's strong army many Greek city-states wanted them on their side during war.

Boys

When boys were seven years old they would have to leave their homes to join military school. The boys education included: discipline, duty, strength, and military skills. The Spartans did not believe in learning to read and write.

Girls

Unlike boys, girls did not have to go to military school. Girls were expected to be physically and mentally tough. Girls education focused on making them strong. Girls in Sparta had much more freedom then girls in other ancient civilizations. One of the major things that girls could do was own land.

Where is Sparta?

Sparta is located on the Greek peninsula Peloponnese. It is in the region commonly known as Lakonia.
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When did big events happen in Sparta?

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In the 15 century Sparta was very powerful because of their strong army. In 480-479BC the Spartans played an important role in the Greek win over Persia. The Spartans defeated Athens(their main rival) in the Peloponnesian War in 431-404BC. Although the Spartans were victorious in many battles, probably on the the most famous battle was a defeat in 580BC in the Battle of Thermoplyae. In that battle the Spartans held up for three days before getting defeated, and their sacrafice led the Greeks to another win over the Persians.