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Lecture 27

HISTORY 36B Lecture Notes - Lecture 27: Lamachus, Peloponnesian War, Peloponnese

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Austin Maldanado
Professor Brusuelas
History 36 B
a. The invasion of Sicily (lecture slide 20, textbook 345-350)
i. The Problem of Peace
1. Not all city-states signed the so-called Peace of Nicias
a. Peace of Nicias, also known as the 50 Year Peace Treaty
i. Signed between the Greek city-states of Athens and Sparta
in 421 BCE, ending the first half of the Peloponnesian war
2. The path to fame and glory, especially at Athens, had been through
a. What does it mean to be on/lead the board of 10 generals if there’s
nothing but peace
3. Numerous individuals on both sides seemed bent on continuing the war in
some way
4. The destruction of Melos in 416 BCE
a. Athenians decide to force Melos into its alliance
b. Melos refuses and sacked
c. Men slaughtered, women and children sold into slavery
ii. Invasion of Sicily
1. Inner city-state dispute between Egesta and Selinus
a. Sicily under Tyrant Gela
b. Peace among various cities often prevailed, however inter-polis
warfare was by no means unknown and the relationship between
Egesta and Selinus
2. Egesta first sought support from Carthage, but eventually turned to Athens
3. Alcibiades, one of the most famous of these young men at Athens
searching for fame and glory, advocated full support
4. Nicias advised against this
5. The desire for victory prevailed
6. Athenians dispatched Alcibiades along with two experienced generals,
Lamachus and Nicias
iii. Destruction of the Herms
1. Herms: squared shaft with the head of Hermes, considered good luck and
could be found in front of homes, in public space, and in front of shrines
2. One morning Athenians awoke to find the Herms around the city defaced
3. Alcibiades, who was known for his drinking parties with other young men
in the city, was accused
4. Alcibiades the accused of profaning the mysteries of Demeter and
Persephone at Eleusis: violated its secrecy
5. A political move against Alcibiades, as it wasn’t certain who was
responsible for the Herms
6. Alcibiades (athenian statesman/general) wanted a trial before the
expedition had sailed, but his opponents waited to bring charges till later
a. Solid support among the sailors
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