Sparta and Athens

Differences between Sparta and Athens
Differences between Sparta and Athens

Differences between Sparta and Athens are given here. Sparta was a city-state of Ancient Greece, it was located on the Peloponnese peninsula on the banks of the Eurotas river, it was military power. Athens was a city-state of Ancient Greece and today it is one of the ancient cities with the largest number of inhabitants and the capital of Greece.


It was also known as Lacedaemonia, it was a polis or city-state of Ancient Greece. It was located on the Peloponnese peninsula on the banks of the Eurotas river, between the Taygetos and Parnón mountains. It was one of the most important Greek polis along with Athens and Thebes.

It emerged as a political entity in the 10th century BC. C., when the Dorian invaders subjugated the local population. Around 650 a. Sparta was already a military power in Ancient Greece. Because of this, they led their Greek allies during the Medical Wars.

Between the years 431 and 404 a. Sparta was the rival of Athens in the Peloponnesian War. Sparta was defeated at the Battle of Leuctra in 371 BC. In Texas, which marked the end of her hegemony. It maintained its political independence until the Roman conquest of Greece in 146 BC. C.

It was a unique city in Ancient Greece due to its coal system and its constitution. It is focused on training and military excellence. Its inhabitants were classified as:

  • Homoioi: They had all the rights. They received a rigorous Spartan education known as agogé, focused on warfare. For this reason, the Spartan phalanxes were considered the best in combat.
  • Motaz: They were those born outside the city, but raised as Spartans.
  • Precios: Free people, they were not citizens.
  • Helots: Servants.

Interestingly, Spartan women enjoyed more rights and equality with men than anywhere else in the world of classical antiquity.

The Spartan army was one of the most important military forces in the history of Ancient Greece. It was the main pillar of the state and the main obligation of its citizens was to become good soldiers.

Sparta had an infantry-based army that fought using the classical-style phalanx formation, a single line of the uniform depth of between 8 and 12 men.

The Spartans wore a red tunic and long hair, a symbol of the free man. The youngest, under the age of 20, was considered weak due to their lack of experience and only those over 60 were called up in an emergency.

Spartan education, agogé, was compulsory, public, and collective. It was focused on war and honor.

Sparta practiced eugenics. As soon as a new child was born, it was examined by a commission of elders, who determined if it was healthy and well-formed. If it was not, it was considered a useless mouth and a burden, consequently, it was thrown from Mount Taygetus.

If approved, he was assigned a plot of land and entrusted to his family to roughly raise him to prepare him for his future life as a soldier. From the age of 7, the children depended on the state and received military instruction, it was a hard life full of flogging, ritual fights, theft to get food, music, dance, athletics, writing, and reading classes.

Those who did not complete the agoge were not considered Spartans with rights.

Girls were raised to be strong and healthy mothers. They practiced exercises and repressed their feelings for the good of the city. They enjoyed status and power as mothers of Spartan warriors. While the men fought, they ran the properties. They could have lovers and wear short, light clothing.

Sparta had two kings, one belonging to the Agiad dynasty and the other to that of the Euripontids. Both families could not marry each other and were buried in different places.


Athens is the capital of Greece and the largest city in that country. In Ancient Greece, it was one of its city-states that was born together with the development of maritime navigation of the port of Piraeus, and that played an important role in the development of democracy.

Athens was a cultural center where famous artists, writers, and philosophers of ancient times lived. The contributions of Athens to the development of the time influenced the development of Greece, Rome, and Western culture.

Athens is spread over a plain of the Attica peninsula, which is often called the Athens or Attic Basin.

Around 1400 a. C., in the Mycenaean era, Athens was an important population that had a fortress located on the Acropolis. During the first millennium a., Athens grew to become one of the dominant city-states of Classical Greece. Between the years 500 a. C. and 323 d. C. was one of the largest cultural and intellectual centers in the world.

The social division of the Athenians was as follows:

  • Citizens: They were the majority of Athenians.
  • Gentlemen.
  • Zeugitas: They were the Labradors.
  • Tetes: Day laborers exempt from paying taxes.
  • Foreigners: Foreign merchants residing in Athens for business.
  • Slaves.

Athens declined due to its defeat against Sparta in 431 BC. C., the rise of Macedonia in the later Hellenistic period and the Roman conquest. The end of the classical era occurs in the year 529, with the closure of the schools of philosophy.

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Differences between Sparta and Athens

  • Sparta had great social differentiation. At the highest part of the hierarchy were the Spartans, followed by the Periecos, and at the end were the Helots or servants.
  • Spartan education was aimed at strengthening his army. They educated children from the age of 7 to turn them into warriors. They entered the army at 17 and served as soldiers until they were 60 or 65 years old.
  • The government was aristocratic. Power and wealth were poorly distributed.
  • Athens had a more varied hierarchy and wealth was better distributed among the citizens.
  • Education in Athens sought to cultivate free and intellectual men. Education began at age 4 and lasted until age 18, where they began to perform mental and physical exercises to cultivate the perfect man.
  • In Athens, the lower classes were favored and the lands were distributed to them. You could buy your freedom by paying a fine if you were a slave.
  • Democracy began in Athens, a political system that sought equality among citizens.
  • The economy of Athens depended on trade.
  • Sparta’s economy was based on agriculture.

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