The Spartan legacy as a warrior culture in which citizens were bread from birth as soldiers has been passed down over the generations and recently idealized through television and film adaptations. While the media…
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The very emergence of Sparta is in large-part concealed from history, but its later rise is well documented in Greek literature and historical accounts. The very emergence of Spartan power and influence is historically linked to their military conquests. The earliest recorded evidence of Sparta arises in around 1000 B.C., but it wasn’t until the 6th century B.C. that Sparta began to gain considerable influence and power within Greece (Morris). This period of time is referred to as the Monolithic period. During this period Sparta gradually gained influence through military conquests. In these regards, there are a number of critical battles that greatly contributed to Sparta’s hegemonic power. One of the major conquests in these regards was Sparta’s overtaking of neighboring Tegea, which was one of the most powerful of the surrounding cities. In 494 B.C. the Spartan invasion of Argos, while unsuccessful, would ultimately result in Sparta becoming recognized as the leading state of Hellas (Kennell). It was during this period that Sparta gained considerable influence within Greece, being recognized as the city-state that would lead the Greek forces.
The next major step in Sparta’s rise and influence emerges in terms of their relations with Athens. Sparta became first became influential in Athenian politics after overthrowing tyrant Athenian ruler Hippias in 510 B.C. Through the proceeding years they would go on to gain considerably more influence within Athens. In large part, one of the significant events contributing to this rise in influence came through Sparta’s military support to Athens during the Persian Wars. During this period they were able to stave off invasion and drive the Persian army to a standstill. One such political decision came when Sparta instruction the revolting Ionian Greeks to settle in cities that had supported the invading Persian Empire (Jones). This Spartan influence continued until Athens ultimately sided with
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