The Spartans: The World of the Warrior-Heroes of Ancient Greece

The Spartans: The World of the Warrior-Heroes of Ancient Greece

Paul Cartledge

Language: English

Pages: 320

ISBN: 1400078857

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The Spartans were a society of warrior-heroes who were the living exemplars of such core values as duty, discipline, self-sacrifice, and extreme toughness. This book, written by one of the world’s leading experts on Sparta, traces the rise and fall of Spartan society and explores the tremendous influence the Spartans had on their world and even on ours. Paul Cartledge brings to life figures like legendary founding father Lycurgus and King Leonidas, who embodied the heroism so closely identified with this unique culture, and he shows how Spartan women enjoyed an unusually dominant and powerful role in this hyper-masculine society. Based firmly on original sources, The Spartans is the definitive book about one of the most fascinating cultures of ancient Greece.

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dedicated at the sanctuary of Orthia, presumably somehow connected with the ritual dancing that took place there, but also betraying artistic influence from the Phoenicians of Carthage in north Africa. Second, there was an impressive series of small bronze figurines, of which those representing adult male hoplites in varying degrees of martial dress and equipment deserve special mention. These too, like the painted pottery, achieved a remarkably wide distribution, both within Laconia and Messenia

not felt to be quite as odd as all that. An older male contemporary of hers was called Gorgos, and he was a high-ranking Spartan who served as proxenos or official diplomatic representative of the city of Elis at Sparta, a sort of honorary consul. To honour their proxenos, the Eleans set up a fine marble seat for him at Olympia, where they controlled the Olympic Games festival, and had his name inscribed upon it. The date of the lettering is around 525 BC. Gorgo was born fifteen or so years

of their citizenship and did not extend it lightly to outsiders, but the Spartans were hypersensitive on the issue. It was not enough even to be born a Spartan, but one had to achieve Spartan citizenship by one’s personal prowess and then to maintain it, or rather, not lose it for either economic or social reasons. In the late 470s Pausanias the Regent was accused of plotting to offer Spartan citizenship to Helots – an accusation that was enough to cause his downfall and death. Perioeci were, at

in 407, Lysander was compelled to give up his office, since Spartan regulations forbade the holding of the nauarchy for more than one year, or at any rate for more than one campaigning season, at a time. However, in 405, following the indifferent success in 406 of Callicratidas, who famously declared that he would not kowtow to any barbarian such as Cyrus the Persian, Lysander was sent out again to the Aegean theatre under the legal fiction of being designated Vice-Admiral. Ultimately, just as

DAVID, E. (1992) ‘Sparta’s social hair’, Eranos 90: 11–21 DAVID, E. (1993) ‘Hunting in Spartan society and consciousness’, Echos du Monde Classique/Classical Views 37: 393–417 DAWKINS, R.M. (1929) ed. The Sanctuary of Artemis Orthia At Sparta. Excavated and described by members of the British School at Athens, 1906–1910 (Journal of Hellenic Studies Supp. V), London DEN BOER, W. (1954) Laconian Studies, Amsterdam DICKINS, G. (1908) ‘The art of Sparta’, Burlington Magazine 14: 66–84 DICKINS,

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