Athens vs. Sparta

Topics: Sparta, Athens, Greece Pages: 2 (464 words) Published: October 23, 2013

Athens vs. Sparta Reflection Essay

As all civilizations do, Athens and Sparta have provided many things for the modern world. And as everything else, both have their strengths and weaknesses. Athens focused more on education and the arts while Sparta revolved around military strength and battle.

Because Sparta had such a massively influential military, we use tactics and strategies derived from them even today. They invented the Phalanx; a military formation of standing closely packed and moving forward slowly to break enemy lines. Spartans also conceived the idea of militaristic schools. They were also the first to enforce conscription. The Spartans would also train their women to fight for themselves so they would be prepared to defend their homes and lives if there was ever an invasion. They also had many more rights than in the other city-states. They could own property, talk to other men aside from their husbands, and be physically educated. Women were not useless. This ideal planted the seed for our way of society today.

Athens, on the other hand, dedicated itself to the arts and architecture. Which we do see traces of in the works of the modern world. The Athenians also practiced the first notion of democracy. Although, only men could vote. Women, children, nor slaves had that privilege. They were not citizens. Girls were educated (cleaning, cooking, and sewing) until the age of 15, when they were married off to an older man.

Before Athens, Greece had no large architecture; only what was necessary. They developed the idea of having large, ornate building built from mud, clay, terra-cotta, marble, and eventually stone. Many of which still stand today. The Athenians used a system of terra-cotta tubing underground to distribute water throughout the city. This led to a boost in the economy and the workings of plumbing today. They used trial by jury and produced some of the best philosophers of both their and our time.

Despite being rivals,...
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