The Spartan and Athenian civilizations carried on conflict from 431 to 404 B. C. (Bunson 195).
Twenty seven years of blood shed and fighting was carried on between these peoples and their allies that were involved. The first ten years of the war was fighting and often called the Archi damian War after the Spartan king Archidamus II, following the fighting was the Peace of Nicias in 421 B.
C. , after this was eight unstable years of peace and more fighting, followed by the Ionian War (Bunson 1277).
These two civilizations were nothing like each other however some of their warfare techniques must have been similar to have fought for so long. The Spartan civilization was one that focused on physical and military power rather than academics (Jones 153).
While men were still young they were taken from their families and went to a school that taught military training. If any men didn’t participate in this training their citizenship was denied to them. By the 6 th century B. C. the Spartan army was known as the most efficient fighting force in Greece, the army consisted of 5000 people which were all citizens (Jones 154).
Sparta was able to do this because their farming was done by subservient workers known as “captives” who were forced to do work on the land (Jones 154).
By doing this the citizens were able to be fully devoted to their military. Unlike the Spartan civilization that was so focused on the military the Athenians were more involved with bringing culture and art into their lives. They were famous for their pottery with geometric designs, they also created the first outlines of the human body which would later bring them artistic achievement (Meiggs 193).
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During the 7 th century B. C. there was much emphasis put on the craftsmanship and handicraft work that was being developed (Meiggs 193).
One known figure in Athens that increased the culture was Pisistratus an able politician, he was responsible for opening up the city to Ionian philosophical and artistic influences. Also he made the first recording of the Panathenaea, a major collection of religious worship. Also because of other abled politicians and generals such as Aristides, Cimon, and Pericles Athens prospered for 50 years in political, artistic, philosophical and financial spheres (Meiggs 192).
However this changed when in 431 the Peloponnesian War began because of Sparta’s uneasiness with the expansion on Athens (Meiggs 195).
The Athenians and Spartans weren’t always enemies. Fifty years before the Peloponnesian war these two Greek states had been allies in the Persian War 480-479 B. C. (Kagan).
“O Lacedaemonian’s, the Athenians beg you to help them and not to sit by while the most ancient city amongst the Hellenes falls into slavery at the hands of barbarian men; for now Ere tria has been enslaved and Hellas is the poorer by a famous city” this is a what an Athens messenger asked the Spartans while the Persian war was happening (Jones 67).
But once the Persian threat was gone, the alliances broken, and the Athenians felt threatened by the Spartans it was then that the Peloponnesian war was started (Michael).
It is likely to think that the Spartans would easily win this war because they are a civilization based around fighting and military, however the Athenians had many techniques that the Spartans lacked which would not let the wars end. For example the Athenians lived on ground that wasn’t fertile and an environment that wasn’t able to grow crops, so they looked to other resources such as the sea. They were very skilled at making ships and boats for a navy. The Spartans on the other had lived on a very fertile and blooming environment, they didn’t believe they would need a navy. Also because the Athenians were traveling by land they were meeting other groups of people and trading more than the Spartans.
... Athenian Alliance. Athens was the super power of Greece. Then the Peloponnesian War came about. This is when the Spartans and their allies go to war ... and secular. Polis the Greek word for city state is where politics came from. They ... were not considered citizens. They moved into the city, but were not born there. Then there ... by a king. It was a large city that was half Greek. Alexander the Great, ...
This allowed the Athenians to gain allies and to create a big army. The Spartans didn’t need to rely on other people as much they had almost everything they needed to survive in the area they were living in. Themistocles an Athenian architect came up with the idea to encircle Athenians with a strong city wall, this was a great protective barrier against the Spartans (McGregor 133).
In Themistocles words this was his idea of the winning strategy, “We must let go our land and houses and stand guard over the sea and the city itself; we must not, when our passions are aroused, confront the numerically superior Peloponnesians in pitched battle; we must not attempt to add to the Empire in time of war; we must not incur new dangers of our own choosing; we must keep our navy, our special strength, in fighting trim; we must administer efficiently he affairs of the allies, the chief source of our revenues- wars are won by intelligence of mind and abundance of money” (McGregor 135).