Synopses & Reviews
The Spartans were a society of warrior-heroes who were the living exemplars of such core values as duty, discipline, self-sacrifice, and extreme toughness. This book, written by one of the world's leading experts on Sparta, traces the rise and fall of Spartan society and explores the tremendous influence the Spartans had on their world and even on ours. Paul Cartledge brings to life figures like legendary founding father Lycurgus and King Leonidas, who embodied the heroism so closely identified with this unique culture, and he shows how Spartan women enjoyed an unusually dominant and powerful role in this hyper-masculine society.
Based firmly on original sources, The Spartans is the definitive book about one of the most fascinating cultures of ancient Greece.
"Cartledge brings [the Spartans] to life again with verve [and] style." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
"The history and atmosphere of Sparta are well conveyed by Cartledge." The New York Review of Books
"In his panorama of the real Sparta, Cartledge cloaks his erudition with an ease and enthusiasm that will excite readers from page one." Booklist
"A fine overview of the rise and fall of a singular culture, spiced with anecdotes, quotations, brisk summary, and real insight." Seattle Times
"The Spartans presented in this book could change the popular image of ancient history, making it more compelling and accessible." The Times Literary Supplement
About the Author
Paul Cartledge is widely acknowledged to be the world's leading expert on the subject of Sparta and the Spartans. He is Professor of Greek History and Chairman of the Classics Faculty at Cambridge University. Among the many articles and books he has written and edited are Spartan Reflections, Sparta and Lakonia, Hellenistic and Roman Sparta, and The Greeks: A Portrait of Self and Others. He is academic consultant to the BBC and PBS for the series The Greeks: Crucible of Civilization.