The Spartans Essay

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The Spartans

The "Spartans," who were they, where did they come from and what did they accomplish for Greece and, in time modern society. All these questions I hope to answer in my investigation. I found the Spartan, very interesting when I first encountered them in "The Odyssey" by Homer, where we hear of "Helen of Sparta," the partner of both "Paris of Troy" and his enemy and his city's enemy "Menelaus of Sparta."

The entire war in fact broke out because Helen ran away with Paris and the whole of Greece was dragged into what at first was a personal feud. Had this not happened none of the Odyssey would have taken place and the old fable like story, as it seems to have developed, of the giant
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And the name "Spartans" is sometimes used to refer to "all" the people who lived in this area. Why, you may ask. Well this is because this whole area, which contains Laconia and Messenia, was in truth ruled by the Spartans. But strictly speaking the name "Sparta" refers only to the city situated by the river Eurotas, which flows through Laconia, and the term "Spartans" refers solely to the people who belonged to that city (It was also known as 'Lacedaemon').

Sparta was not built around a high and defensible hill or citadel, as most Greek cities were; and the Spartans never built walls around their city, as the Athenians had done, for example. The reasoning for this was the fact the Spartans would have originally have relied on their natural surroundings. Although the city itself is in the river valley where crops could be raised successfully on the plains, between this valley and the rest of Greece is a line of rocky and mountainous land. The Spartans, then, were less worried than the inhabitants of most Greek cities about enemies from outside their territory. Besides the Spartans had a reputation for being the best of all Greek foot soldiers. But they were very concerned indeed about an enemy within their own territory. This enemy was the enormous slave populations of serfs or "helots." Their problem was not how to defend

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