Interesting Facts About Ancient Spartans

Dec 12, 2019 By Kayode Oseh

Human beings are bound to interpret things wrongly. Misconceptions are quite inevitable, most especially when it comes to things that had to do with history. When it comes to history, stories are bound to be embellished. There are lots of occurrences in the past that majority believed were fabricated. However, it turns out that some of those misconceptions are very much correct. And they aren't as made up as you think.

Below are facts about Ancient Spartans people think is untrue but they are actually true. 

Spartans had to prove their fitness even as infants.

Spartans are people who see war as a way of life. Their main aim was to raise the most formidable soldier ever and that was actually the major reason why "infanticide" was quite common among them. When a spartan baby (male) was been born, he was meant to face some panel of judges to see if he was fit enough to be a soldier. If by any unfortunate chance, he was found not to be-- maybe deformed or something, he was most likely to be abandoned on a nearby hillside to die. If fortunate, he may be discovered by a stranger and raised as an adopted child.

Spartan children were placed in a military-style education program.

All spartan boys had to start their military training at the age of seven. The boys were forced to live their parents at this age in order to start a rigorous military exercise that will groom them in readiness for duty as a soldier. At age 12, initiates were deprived of all clothing save for a red cloak and forced to sleep outside and make their own beds from reeds. As part of training and to prepare them for the challenges of life, they were encouraged to scout for their own food. Spartan girls on the other hand, were not meant to be soldiers but to give birth to soldiers. They also undergo excruciating training that will prepare them for motherhood. They were encouraged to go into sports like Javelin and discus throwing, short puts and gymnastics.

They were majorly warriors 

Unlike any other city-state of ancient Greece who specialized in philosophy, art, literature and theater art, Spartans only studied war. All Spartan men were trained to become warriors from the day they were born.

They had the strongest army in the entire Greece

They had the ability to defeat large armies even if they were few. The Spartan Army fought in a Phalanx formation. They would line up side by side and several men deep. They would lock their shields together and advance on the enemy stabbing them with their spears. This is a formation they spent their whole life mastering. And it paid of for them quite well when on the battle field.

Spartan youths were trained to master endurance

Spartan youths were ritualistically beating as a way to test their endurance. They were brought in front of an alter at the sanctuary of Artemis, were they were flogged--sometimes to death--in an attempt to train them for endurance.

Spartan marriage.

Spartan soldiers were restricted to barrack until they were 30 years. This was actually the age they were meant to get married however, those who married before this age were to stay away from their wives until they've attained the age (30) that will officially take them out of the barrack. The Spartans saw marriage primarily as a means for conceiving new soldiers, and citizens were encouraged to consider the health and fitness of their mate before tying the knot.

They never surrender in battle

Strength, bravery and endurance were the virtues guarding a spartan soldier. To surrender in battle was an ultimate disgrace to Spartans. They were often trained to fight till the last man ---surrendering was viewed as an act of cowardice and shame. If a Spartan trooper died in battle, he was viewed as having completed his duty as a citizen. He was giving a befitting burial with his name inscribed on his tomb. Only a few Spartans had their names inscribed on their tombs; women who died in childbirth and men who fell in combat.

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