Spartan Society and the Agoge

Topics: Sparta, Military, Army Pages: 3 (1097 words) Published: November 26, 2010
What are the main features of the Spartan agoge and what did the agoge contribute to Spartan society?

Sparta was unique in ancient Greece for its social system and constitution, which completely focused on military training and excellence. From the age of seven a Spartan boy would compete in a series of stages which help constructs the identity for which these Spartan warriors are known to be. With knowledge passed through such an education Sparta was able to produce a military force like no other. This education system was known as the agoge. With this education system it is a build up for physical, social, intellectual and moral education for these soldiers which overall construct an identity creating a sense of eunomia within the society and the fellow Greek states. The agoge was a system of features which correlate to the state of “eunomia” A balance of good order. The Agoge was designed in order to emphasize on eunomia within the city by encouraging discipline from the age of 7 which contributes to the state of eunomia. This is emphasized by the amount of training due to the fact that for the next five years these Spartan boys were conditioned physically and mentally which overall defines what an ideal Spartan warrior were to be within that time period . Xenophon Constitution of the Lacedaimonians 2.1 "[2.2] 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 gave this person authority to gather the boys together, to take charge of them and to punish them severely in case of misconduct. He also assigned to him a staff of youths provided with whips to chastise them when necessary; and the result is that modesty and obedience are inseparable companions at Sparta.( http://ancienthistory.about.com/cs/sparta/a/spartamilitstat_2.htm). With the discipline and physical...
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