Difference between Sparta and Athens – Sparta vs. Athens
What is the difference between Sparta and Athens? This is a very interesting question. Sparta and Athens are well-known ancient city-states. They both had huge impact on the culture of ancient Greece. These city-states were rivals, but they affected each other in many ways. The way of life in Athens was completely different from that in Sparta. However, each of these states was extremely interesting. You will see that they differ in almost everything.
What Is the Difference between Athens and Sparta?
Sparta was well known for its military culture. Spartans were focused on military and war activities, and their lifestyle was created in such manner. Spartans were known as extremely disciplined, brave, pragmatic, and occasionally very cruel. Spartan boys were taught to be soldiers in their childhood. Growing up was actually quite tough in Sparta.
Athens was extremely important for the culture of the entire ancient world. Philosophy, social science, physics, mathematics, and nearly all other sciences were born right there, in Athens. Athenians were especially proud of their long tradition and their accomplishments when it comes to politics, culture and social life.
Now, let us find out more about other differences between Athens and Sparta. Spartan people were the Dorian descendants, while Athenians were the Ionian descendants.
The Spartan form of government was drastically different from that of Athens. Athenians had a democratic form of government, while Spartans had a firm oligarchy with two kings who ruled the polis together with five ephors.
Spartans believed in strong military power. The purpose of life was to be useful to the Spartan society – in other words, to be a good soldier. Athenians were interested in other things, too, such as science and social life in general. They also had a powerful marine force, but the purpose of life in Athens was not only related to military force and power. This is considered one of the major differences between the Spartan and the Athenian way of life.
Athens was considered the cradle of emancipation and modern lifestyle. Sparta was considered the synonym for military power and pragmatism.
Spartans were concentrated on agriculture. Athenians were more interested in trading, and their polis had the greatest trading power in this area.
Athens had a great marine force, while Spartans had supremacy on land. The two city-states were rivals, but they were also united against the Persians.
Both states had their famous kings and wise people who took part in government. However, Spartans were famous as military leaders, while Athenians were famous as philosophers.