Essay 1 Student number: 30416325
‘Sparta were well suited for hegemony and ran a successful empire for over 30 years’. Discuss the accuracy of this statement
Spartan hegemony was a period of turmoil and conflict, coming to power through their fierce military strength and their ability to intimidate others into following their rule. Whether or not they were successful in their rule over Greece depends on how you view success. The very definition of success is the achievement of an aim or purpose. The Spartan’s main purpose was to liberate the Greeks from Athens so in a way, yes, they were successful, but the way they did it was not right. This would ultimately lead to their empires downfall, which did last for 30 years which was pretty good.
In terms of Sparta ruling over Greece they weren’t really all that successful because they lost sight of their purpose. They started to become the very thing the sort to free the Greeks form, which caused more conflict instead of peace. The Spartan allies weren’t happy with Sparta’s treatment of Athens, claiming they should be punished for what they did, with Sparta refusing to do so. Their allies also didn’t like the fact that in order to defeat Athens, Sparta had to sell their independence to Persia who was an enemy of Greece. This is not the only questionable thing they have done in their rule.
One thing the Spartans did in their rule was destroy the city of Mantinea and subjected them to an unwanted alliance. This was because after the Corinthian war the King’s Peace was accepted by all Greeks and they were to disband all leagues (except Sparta), since Mantinea was 5 smaller villages that made up the city Sparta Accused them of going against the King’s Peace. Sparta asked them to tear down their walls, they refused and suffered the wrath of the Spartan military. Bury and Meiggs depict the siege, ‘Mantinea stood on a high plain, without any natural defences, depending entirely on its walls of unburnt brick. The ri...