Athens Loses, Sparta Wins

Story of the Week!

How it all began & ended

Athens and Sparta, both powerful Greek city-states, had fought as allies. Athens grew more powerful and tensions rose, escalating into nearly three decades of war. Sparta emerged victorious, while the constant fighting left Athens with out any money, exhausted and demoralized. Neither city-state regained the military strength they once had. Both city-states then assumed preeminence, and their rivalry slowly led to the long-expected showdown. The Athenians were surprised by the Spartans and ,their allies, the Corinthians. The fleet was almost completely destroyed. Athens lost the better part of her 180 ships, while the 200 Spartan ships were in good shape after the battle. A Spartan army invaded Attica in 404. After a short resistance, Athens was forced to surrender.

Interviewing a spartan that fought in the war

We found a Spartan that fought the latest war, Athena vs. Sparta, and we talked to him and he gave us major details of what happened. He said that Athens was not as military based, as military service was optional, for Sparta it was a mandatory military service. They were a tough military training in, which started from the age of seven and was known as the agōgē, resulted in a professional hoplite army capable of great discipline and relatively sophisticated battle manoeuvres which made them feared throughout Greece, a fact perhaps evidenced by Sparta’s notable lack of fortifications for most of its history. He also said that once the was started it was divided into three phases. In the first phase, the Archidamian War, Sparta launched repeated invasions of Attica, while Athens took advantage of its naval supremacy to raid the coast of the Peloponnese and attempt to suppress signs of unrest in its empire. In 415 BC, Athens dispatched a massive expeditionary force to attack Syracuse in Sicily; the attack failed disastrously, with the destruction of the entire force, in 413 BC. This ushered in the final phase of the war, generally referred to either as the Decelean War, or the Ionian War. In this phase, Sparta, now receiving support from Persia, supported rebellions in Athens' subject states in the Aegean Sea and Ionia, undermining Athens' empire, and, eventually, depriving the city of naval supremacy. And as a result of the destruction of Athens' thet fled to Aeggospotami effectively ended the war, and Athens surrendered in the following year. Corinth and Thebes demanded that Athens should be destroyed and all its citizens should be enslaved but Sparta refused. At the end of the interview he also said that because of the war Athens, the strongest city-state in Greece before the war, lowered to a state of near-complete subjection, while Sparta established as the leading power of Greece, thanks to the Athens who surrendered.

It was a very happy day for the Spartans, but for the Athens they're going home with nothing but disappointment. We also found out that the war obviously damaged both sides of the war and that Sparta got financial help from Persian. Another thing we found out was that the war was really less intense than the second and fought mainly between Athens and Corinth with occasional intervention by Sparta. The war was followed by the Thirty Year’s Peace although in reality hostilities never fully ceased and broke out into full war once again from 431 BCE.

Spartans and Sports

Olympics

A subject the Spartans were intrigued with was of course sport. The Spartans literally lived for their physical exercise, and their prowess and perforce was truly testament to that. With huge success at the Olympic Games of ancient Greece the Spartans had many great champions like Chionis who would only further serve to enthuse their interest in physical sports and exercises.