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Posted May 7, 2008
I read this book while studying greek history. It was hard for me to understand at first but i got the hang of it after a while. It was an amazing first hand account of everything that went on during the war and it is loaded with history. I learned a lot from it about the governments of Athens and Sparta and loads of other places and people in ancient greece along with battle tactics and such. Even though it was a dificult read I am amazed at how much i learned and i don't know how any study of ancient greece could do without it. I would not suggest it for anyone younger than twelve which was how old i was when i read it but like i said it was dificult for me at that age and is not really the kind of book that will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole time. I would encourage everyone to read it, it is a great book and a definate classic.
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Posted March 23, 2011
The conflict of the Second or Great Peloponnesian War lasted from 431-404 BCE. It was a fratricidal war that divided the Grecian city-states into the two spheres of the Lacedaemonian Confederation and the Athenian Hegemony. The Delian League that was to act as a defensive perimeter of the Grecians and stave off future Persian invasions transformed into a power that was dominated by a single hegemonic state: the Athenian polis. The period of the First Athenian Hegemony lasted from 478-404 BCE and it was essentially a thalassocracy. A thalassocracy is a political entity whose sole basis for its supremacy or even its very existence depends on the mastery of the seas and the dominance of its navies. As soon as the Athenians were defeated at the naval engagement at Aegospotami in 405 BCE, the Athenian port of Piraeus was blockaded and with the destruction of its naval forces and the loss of its former maritime supremacy, the Athenian Hegemony collapsed. The Athenian response to the Lacedaemonian threat was the Periclean Strategy which was divided into three main strategic points: 1. Offensive assaults by sea [For the constant harassment of Lacedaemonian and Lacedaemonian allied coastal cities and for the seizure of poorly defended regions that were accessible by sea], 2. A defensive stance on land; a policy of containment [The Athenians would allow the Lacedaemonians to ravage the adjacent lands and the surrounding countryside in Attica while Athens itself and the port of Piraeus were well-defended with the Long Walls, and 3. The maintenance of foreign trade [While the Athenians formed a stranglehold on its inveterate foes through the might of its formidable fleets, Athens would enrich itself with trade maintained with foreign states].
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Posted December 25, 2009
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