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Lecture

Sparta

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School
Western University
Department
Classical Studies
Course
Classical Studies 1000
Professor
Shauna Burke
Semester
Fall

Description
1 Sparta: • closed society: outsiders= no admission into polis unless given permission, if enter=attended to by spartan • bias: writer will say that culture is “some extreme” (much better/much worse) • Spartan mirage=exaggerated • Dorians- descendants of Hercules, invaded Mycenaean culture & drove them out Constitution: - typical Greek polis until about 7th century BC - produced poetry, art, were prosperous - 30 elders: make decision w/ advice & input of people - assembly: all people are invited - 5 ephors: made sure all Spartans behaved in Spartan way, if not ephors restrained them - 2 kings: dual monarchy b/c afraid 1 person may abuse power, take lead/ agree w/ one another on battle strategy & other decisions Laconia & Messenia: - transformed Spartan culture - totalitarian society - land= Laconia - 8th century- went to war w/ Messenia + engaged w/ conflict w/ polis in east - try to hold onto neighbours they conquered - east: Perioikoi - Messenia: Helots- deprived ownership, give portion of everything to Spartans (ex. food, land) - wars: over small things, only lasted about 2 years & then forgotten - Revolt: large scale, Messinians outnumbered Spartans (6:1), blamed on too much luxury + softness - Messinians=property of state - Military Training (Spartans): to maintain dominant position - all land was divided equally b/w Spartans 2 - currency: gold/silver coins replaced by iron bricks (impractical= discourage accumulation of wealth) - Xenophobic: close society off - Homoioi: equals • Spartan Life: - men/women: married, not allowed to live together for early part of life, sex=secretive (encourage stealth/increase attractiveness) - child: select polis officials judged whether child was allowed to live - little- expect missions to teach toughness/increase stealth ex. live out in wild w/ little food - not behaving properly=ostracized from society - test toughness ex. cheese race - women: trained nude (seemed incomprehensible to other polis’), expected to be physically fit to produce fit children - men: trained in nude - constant sex • Peloponnesian League: - full time army, indestructible - had no interest in sending young men out of Sparta - if there was conflict: polis came to Sparta & complained about other
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