Greek Survival Guide: Ancient Sparta

Greek Survival Guide: Ancient Sparta

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If you thought life in the 21st century was difficult: consider living in Ancient Sparta. Would you have been able to survive? Regardless, we have compiled a survival guide that encompasses everything you need to know about Ancient Sparta.

Daily life in Ancient Sparta

Sparta was a state of soldiers. Each boy born was a descendant of the state and not just the child of the parents. Spartan boys were expected to be rough and challenging, and their strength was tested from the day they were born. The Spartan baby was bathed in wine rather than water, and f the baby turned out to be weak, he was no use to the state. He was thrown off a cliff or turned into a slave. 

For a Spartan boy to grow up as a mighty soldier, it was impertinent to take him away from his mother's nurturing embrace. The child would be taken away at the mere age of 7 and undergo harsh training. Spartan boys were no stranger to starvation as they were made to march on an empty stomach without shoes.

From a young age, they were taught the art of battle. Older boys often beat the younger boys to teach them endurance and pain. At the age of twenty, they were tested for citizenship. Those who passed were required to get married and procreate to bring forth more soldiers. They would also be granted a portion of land. Only when they turned 30 would they be allowed to live with their families.

Women in Sparta were considered equal to men. They would also be taken away at a young age and would indulge in the arts of fighting. Spartans believed strong women produced strong offspring, so special attention was given to women's diet. When they turned 18, they would be required to take the citizenship test, and the prize would be in the form of a husband. However, Spartan men and women only met to procreate and seldom lived together.

Political System in Ancient Sparta

Sparta was an oligarchy with two kings who had the same power and authority. The Spartan government also consisted of a council of 28 elders elected by the assembly. They were responsible for deciding criminal matters, although they were above the law.

Historical figures

Notable historical figures of Ancient Sparta are:

Agis 4

The 24th King of Sparta is responsible for bringing back the old Spartan tradition, such as sharing wealth and land.


Lycurgus is popular due to his efforts to make Sparta a powerful state. He demanded that men eat together in an attempt to bring forth unity. He is also credited with the invention of Gerousia.

Leonidas 1

Leonidas 1 won over the hearts of Ancient Spartans due to his remarkable triumph in the battle of Thermopylae. He was considered to be the bravest of all.


A courageous Spartan lady, Arachidamia empowered the women of coming generations by marching, sword in hand, to battle with the enemy.

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