Monday, May 16, 2011

History of Ancient Sparta

A History of Ancient Sparta: Valor, Virtue, and Devotion in the Greek Golden Age, 7 Cds [Complete & Unabridged Audio Work]
Sparta never seems to get the credit of Athens. Sure, there are plenty of Spartan sports teams, but you don't have colleges in towns called "Sparta". Spartans are more the Republicans of Greek history. They survived for a while, were conservative, and had a great military. However, Athens is what gave us all the intellectual basis for our modern democracy. (Ok, so a lot of the Athenian culture came from Sparta, but, hey, at least Athens made some cool stories.)

These lectures provide some nice background of Sparta. They were truly the "jocks" of the ancient world. They exercised like crazy, and were well-prepared to take on any foe. However, their preferred method of engagement was to intimidate the enemies and let them peacefully leave. (Rather than the then common custom of slaughter.) When were well respected, especially in childbirth. Unfit human "specimens" were discarded so that only the strongest continued to propagate.

For some reason, however, the Spartan's began to die out. And eventually, they fell by the wayside. It makes for an enchanting history, though the records are alas, somewhat lacking, especially compared to their neighbors form Athens.

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