Interesting facts about the Spartans

What is a laconic expression? This is the ability to express yourself briefly and clearly. Probably not everyone knows that this concept originates from Sparta, which was located in Laconia, one of the regions of Ancient Greece. In Sparta, they did not like long speeches, they had to express themselves briefly and to the point.

By the way, the expression "with a shield or on a shield" also appeared in Ancient Sparta. This is how mothers admonished their sons who went on a military campaign. The dead soldiers were brought on shields, and death in battle was honorable. According to the laws of that time, names on tombstones were written only for men who died in battle or for women who died during childbirth.

The ancient historian Plutarch wrote that the Spartans are very harsh and cruel, therefore, newborn children were carried to the elders to determine how healthy the child is. The weak and the sick were thrown from the cliff. With the light hand of Plutarch, this version has survived to this day. But, Greek historians refute this myth. Archaeologists from the University of Athens excavated a gorge where, according to legend, the unfortunate children were thrown.

Scientists, indeed, found many bones there, but they belonged to adult men from 18 to 35 years old. It turns out that either the rumors about the cruelty of the Spartans are exaggerated, or they were looking in the wrong place.

The Spartans were supposed to be fed from a common cauldron. The military leader Agis, returning from the campaign, decided to break this rule and ordered dinner to be served home. He was denied, in addition, Agis was punished with a fine.

The only craft that the Spartans mastered to perfection was the art of war. But physical labor was considered a humiliating occupation in Sparta. For this, slaves were used - helots. In addition, helots were forced to drink wine in order to show young people who a drunken person turns into.

Children were considered the property of the state. At the age of seven, the boys were taken from the family and transferred to military schools. The conditions here were, indeed, Spartan - the pupils had to undergo rigorous training and become fearless warriors. They fed them meagerly, encouraging the theft of food. But, if someone came across he was punished twice: for stealing and for being caught. The Spartan served up to 60 years of age.

The famous Spartan legislator Lycurgus decided that the state structure he created should be observed forever. To do this, he took a desperate step - he went on a journey to the city of Delphi, taking an oath from the inhabitants of Sparta that until his return they would not change any of the existing laws. To bind the Spartans with this oath forever, Lycurgus starved himself to death in Delphi.

There is an interesting legend about the collapse of Sparta. In 404, the Spartans captured the vast treasures of the Persian king. And what to do with this wealth? The Persians advised to share all this among themselves. This is where it all started. The Spartans have become greedy and weak-willed people. By the beginning of our era, Sparta was already part of the Roman Empire.