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y The general level of poverty perhaps meant that early Dark AgeThuc. 1.12.1, communities were largely egalitarian. Archaeologists have recently analyzed evidence from burials, however, which suggests that Greek society had once again begun to develop a hierarchical system perhaps as early as 1050 B.C. The revival of a social hierarchy in Dark Age Greece clearly shows up in the tenth century B.C. at a site now known as Lefkandi on the island of Euboea, off the eastern coast of the Greek mainland. There archaeologists have discovered the richly furnished burials of a man and woman, who died about 950 B.C. Their riches included goods of Near Eastern manufacture and style, testifying to the ongoing contacts between Greece and the Near East in the Dark Age. These contacts deeply influenced Greek mythology and religion as well as commerce. The dead woman wore
Gytheion (Greece) (search for this): chapter 6
ce in Greece during the Archaic Age. Sparta's easily defended location, Perseus Encyclopedia entry for Laconia, Perseus Encyclopedia entry for Spartans, —nestled on a narrow north-south plain between rugged mountain ranges in the southeastern Peloponnese, in a region called Laconia (hence the designation of Spartans as Laconians)—gave it a secure base for developing its might. Sparta had access to the sea through a harborPaus. 3.21.6, situated some twenty-five miles south of its urban center, but this harbor opened onto a dangerous stretch of the Mediterranean whipped by treacherous currents and winds. As a consequence, enemies could not threaten the Spartans by sea, but their relative isolation from the sea also kept the Spartans from becoming adept sailors. Their interests and their strength Thuc. 1.10.2 lay on the land.
Hellespont (Turkey) (search for this): chapter 8
es from all over the far-flung Persian kingdom that he died before it could be launched. His son, Xerxes I Hdt. 7.2-4 (*486-465) led the massive invasion force Hdt. 7.5-6 of infantry and ships against the Greek mainland. So huge was Xerxes' army Hdt. 7.60-99 , the Greeks later claimed, it required seven days and seven nights of continuous marching to cross the Hellespont Hdt. 7.56 strait between Anatolia and the Greek mainland on a temporary bridge lashed together from boats and pontoons. Xerxes expected the Greek states simply to surrender without a fight once they realized the size of his forces. Many of them didHdt. 7.6, Hdt. 7.130, Hdt. 7.132, Hdt. 7.150-152, Hdt. 8.3-4, Hdt. 9.12, especially the ones in northern Greece along the route of
Cyclades (Greece) (search for this): chapter 9
ch would be put together with others' payments to pay for ships and crews. Over time, more and more of the members of the alliance chose to pay their dues in cash rather than go to the trouble of furnishing warships. The alliance's funds were kept on the centrally-located island of Delos Thuc. 1.96 , in the group of islands in the Aegean Sea called the Cyclades , where they were placed under the guardianship of the god Apollo, to whom the whole island of Delos was sacred. Historians today refer to the alliance as the Delian League because its treasury was originally located on Delos. The Warships of the Delian League The warship of the time was a narrow vessel built for speed called a triremePerseus Encyclopedia entry for triremes,
Laurion (Greece) (search for this): chapter 9
t idealized citizens of perfect physique and beauty , amounted to a claim of special intimacy between the city-state and the gods, a statement of confidence that these honored deities favored the Athenians. Presumably this claim reflected the Athenian interpretation of their success in helping to turn back the Persians, in achieving leadership of a powerful naval alliance, and in controlling, from their silver mines and the allies' dues, an amount of revenue which made Athens richer than all its neighbors in mainland Greece. The Parthenon, like the rest of the Periclean building program, paid honor to the gods with whom the city-state was identified and expressed the Athenian view that the gods looked favorably on their empire. Their success, the Athenians would have said, proved that the gods were on their side.
Amphipolis (Greece) (search for this): chapter 12
ear with the next unexpected development of the war: a sudden reversal in the Spartan policy against waging military expeditions far from home. In 424 the Spartan general Brasidas led an army on a daring campaign against Athenian strongholds in far northern GreeceThuc. 4.74, Thuc. 4.78, Thuc. 4.120, Thuc. 4.135, hundreds of miles from Sparta. His most important victory came with the conquest of Amphipolis,Thuc. 4.102, , an important Athenian colony near the coast that the Athenians regarded as essential to their strategic position. Brasidas' success there robbed Athens of access to gold and silver mines and a major source of timber for building warships. Even though he was not directly involved in the battle at Amphipolis, Thucydides lost his command and was forced into exile because he was the comman
Laurion (Greece) (search for this): chapter 12
t. They could pay for the food with the huge financial reserves they had accumulated from the dues of the Delian League and the income from their silver mines. The Athenians could also retreat safely behind their walls in the case of attacks by the superior Spartan infantnian fortunes increased Thuc. 7.27.3-28 when twenty thousand slaves owned by the state and who worked in Athens' silver mines ran away to seek refuge in the Spartan camp. The loss of these slave miners put a stop to the flow of revenue frothe Peloponnesian War from the many interruptions to agriculture and from the catastrophic loss of income from the state's silver mines, that occurred after the Spartan army took up a permanent presence in 413 B.C. Work could thereafter no longer continue a
ain routes to Athens and to compel some of the allies who had revolted to return to the alliance. The end of the war The aggressive Spartan commander Lysander Plut. Lys. 1 ultimately doomed Athenian hopes in the war by using Persian money to rebuild the Spartan fleet and by ensuring that it was well led. When in 406 he inflicted a defeat on an Athenian fleet at Notion Xen. Hell. 1.5.10 , near Ephesus on the Anatolian coast, Alcibiades, who had not been present but was held to have been reponsible for the safety of the Athenian forces,Plut. Alc. 35.4-36.3, Plut. Lys. 5.1-2 was forced into exile for the last time. The Athenian fleet nevertheless won a victory off the islands of ArginusaiXen. Hell. 1.6.22, Xen. Hell. 1.6.35, Xen. Hell. 1.7.4, Xen.
anctions against the city-state of MegaraPerseus Encyclopedia entry for Megara, , an ally of Sparta, and the Athenian blockade of Potidaea , a city-state formerly allied to Athens but now in revolt and seeking help from CorinthThuc. 1.13.5, , TRM OV Encyclopedia entry for Megara, a Spartan ally that lay just west of Athenian territory, and stopped its military blockage of Potidaea,Thuc. 1.71.4, Thuc. 1.139-140, Plut. Per. 29.4, a strategically located city-state in northern Greece. The Athenians had fors, they fought on resiliently. Despite the loss of manpower inflicted by the epidemic, the Athenian military forces proved effective. Potidaea, the ally whose rebellion had exacerbated the hostile relations between Athens and Corinth, was compelled to surrender in 430.Thu