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Sparta - Andrew Bowen College Writing I Research Paper The...

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Andrew Bowen College Writing I Research Paper The Real Sparta If you were to look at the ruins of Sparta today you would not think that it was ever a thriving Greek city state that once ruled all of Greece. To understand the rise and fall of Sparta, you must know its foundations. What gave it its power and what made it eventually crumble. This not only includes Sparta’s government, but their social life, women, military, and education. Even in today’s society when we think of Sparta we think of a model for discipline, obedience, and virtue. They said they were free men, yet their lives were practically controlled by the state from the beginning until the end of their lives (The Gymnasium of Virtue). Like any civilization, Sparta had its customs. Too have such a strong and well trained army one of Sparta’s customs was to train them as boys. In the education or training of a Spartan boy’s education there were three stages. This famous education was known as the agoge. The first stage started at birth. The children were brought up by nurses. This was so the mothers did not spoil the children in their care. It
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was said that Spartan babies did not cry or sulk. Historians know that this was not possible and only leads those to believe that nobody took any notice of them or tried to comfort them when they did cry or sulk. By age seven, they were removed from their homes and until they were thirty years old they lived in barracks with all other Spartan boys. It was run like a military. The city appointed a warden who had absolute power over the boys and who had the right to punish them if they misbehaved (Sparta 32-33). As Xenophon once wrote, “Lycurgus, on the contrary, instead of leaving each father to appoint a slave to act as tutor, gave the duty of controlling the boys to a member of the class from which the highest offices are filled, in fact to the "Warden" as he is called. He
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