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Homework For Friday, December 4th

December 3, 2015

Tonight I would like you to read two pieces: “Spartan Society” by Xenophon and “Code of a Citizen Soldier” by Tyrtaeus. First some biographical information on the authors:


  • Lived 430 – 350 B.C.E, born in Athens
  • Historian, soldier, and mercenary
  • Student of Socrates
  • Although born in Athens, he affiliated himself with Sparta.
  • Known particularly for his history of the Peloponnesian War, the war between Athens and Sparta.


  • Spartan lyric poet
  • Wrote sometime around the time of the Second Messenian War

I remind you that tomorrow’s class will be a discussion about how the Spartans further the concepts of arete and eunomia. Please read the following sections of the Xenophon carefully: 1, 6, 7, 9, 10, 13, 16, 18, 19, 20, 28, 30, 31. If you have time, you should read the others as well.

For the Tyrtaeus, please be able to answer the following questions:

1. What is the passage in the poem (maximum four lines) that best exemplifies its message?

2. Keeping mind the date of the poem and its historical context, how does its message act as Spartan “propaganda” and further its system?






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