Influential Factors That Affected Athens History Essay

Some of the most influential factors that affected Athens ‘ rise and autumn were their signifier of authorities, their leading, and their haughtiness. Athens ‘ democracy greatly affected their rise and prostration because it helped them lift to power, but it besides caused them to do bad picks, taking to their autumn. Similarly, the superior leading of the Athenians facilitated the growing of Athens and was besides a cardinal factor in its ruin. Because of their outstanding leading in the Iranian Wars, the Athenian self-image was boosted, and this haughtiness caused many other city states, chiefly Sparta and Corinth, to dislike Athens and convey their city state to ruins.

Athens ‘ democracy greatly affected their rise and prostration because it helped them lift to power, but it besides caused them to do bad picks, taking to their autumn. The democracy allowed for regular citizens of the city state to hold a say in their authorities. In 507 B.C. , Cleisthenes created ten folks which each had 50 representatives in the Boule. This was the start of democracy in Athens. Besides, an Assembly was established where all male citizens over the age of 18 could travel and discourse affairs. Since anyone could stand up to talk at the Assembly, a feeling of equality was established. Now it was the common people who could do determinations for their city state, non the selfish blue bloods. Under the democracy, many great leaders were elected, such as Themistocles and Pericles who both made great parts to Athens. However, many hapless leaders were besides chosen such as Cleon, who was a leather sixpence. This shows a large defect in the democracy of Athens. How could a leather sixpence, the lowest of the low, be elected to take a critical invasion? Besides, the democracy made bad determinations. In 413 B.C. , even after Nicias had reported that there was no hope in contending the Sicilians any longer, the Athenians voted to direct another 15,000 work forces to contend! The Sicilian Expedition was a failure, and it cost 1000s of work forces their lives with merely a smattering of them doing it back alive to Athens. The democracy of Athens was a major factor in its rise to power, but it besides played a portion in conveying about its ruin.

Similarly, the superior leading of the Athenians facilitated the growing of Athens and was besides a cardinal factor in its ruin. In both Persian Wars, great generals led the Athenians to triumph over the Persians. In the First Persian War in 490 B.C. , one of the Athenian generals, Miltiades, was make bolding and attacked the Iranian ground forces while their horse was off in the Battle of Marathon. This led to an overpowering win for Athens. They merely lost 192 work forces while Persia lost a astonishing 6,400 work forces. The great leading of Miltiades led the Athenians to a immense triumph over the Persians. A strategic determination made by Themistocles before the Second Persian War was to utilize the Ag that the Athenians found in early 5th century B.C. to construct a naval forces of triremes. He knew that after losing the first war, the Persians would be back to acquire retaliation. This turned out to be a important determination because the Grecian win at Salamis was a turning point in the war. In the Second Persian War, Athens was given bid of the Greek naval forces. In 480 B.C. , Themistocles, who was in charge of the naval forces, tricked Xerxes, the male monarch of Persia, into believing the Grecian naval forces was in confusion. Xerxes took the come-on and chased the Grecian naval forces into the Strait of Salamis. There, the larger size of the Persian navy was of no usage because there was no room to steer, and the Greeks destroyed the Iranian naval forces. The hocus-pocus of Themistocles resulted in a decisive win for the Athenians and one of the most of import wins for the Greeks in the Second Persian War. However, leading was besides one of the causes of the autumn of Athens. In the Peloponnesian War, many bad picks by leaders caused them to be defeated by Sparta. For illustration, in 425 B.C. , Cleon, a leather sixpence, convinced the Athenians that establishing a direct onslaught on Sparta would be smart because the Spartans would non make bold onslaught while the Athenians were in their district. The occupying force, nevertheless, got stuck on an island merely off the shore, and after two old ages, the invasion failed. This failure cost the Athenians a big sum of their financess. Cleon ‘s failure to believe his actions through was clearly a mark of bad leading that cost Athens. Another illustration of bad leading comes from the Sicilian Expedition in 415 B.C. Nicias, a leader that was opposed to war, was the lone one left in charge of the expedition after Alcibiades had been arrested and escaped, and Lamachus had been killed in conflict. He turned out to be a awful leader because he was indecisive and missed many chances to get the better of the Sicilians. Even when he eventually realized that it was hopeless to contend the Sicilians, he hesitated, and the dark before the Athenian ground forces was about to go forth, their full fleet was burned by fire ships. The Sicilian Expedition had exhausted the Athenian exchequer because they had sent an unprecedented sum of work forces, and it had ended in an arrant failure. The hapless leading of Nicias ended horrifically and resulted in the deceases of 1000s of Athenians. Clearly, great leading was a factor in assisting Athens rise to power, but ironically, it was besides a major factor in its diminution.

Because of their outstanding leading in the Iranian Wars, the Athenian self-image was boosted, and this haughtiness caused many other city states, chiefly Sparta and Corinth, to dislike Athens and convey their city state to ruins. Their boosted self-image can be seen best in their graphics after the Iranian Wars. Before the wars, their sculptures of worlds all had the same position, with one pes forward and weaponries at the side. This showed a unimportance towards the Gods because Gods were portrayed as strong and tall. However, after the wars, sculptures of worlds could non be distinguished from the Gods. Humans were now portrayed with ruffling musculus, tall, and freedom of motion. In the Parthenon frieze, the worlds look precisely the same as the Gods on the pediments, albeit smaller and in low alleviation. Besides, they portrayed themselves as rational in the metopes, and the barbarians were shown as irrational and brainsick. Their haughtiness can be seen in Pericles ‘ Funeral Oration when he says, “ … I declare that our metropolis is an instruction to Greece. ” He clearly thought really extremely of his metropolis and that it was the best in all of Greece. Their haughtiness caused them to go power-hungry. In the Melian Dialogue, the Athenians speak with a condescending tone towards the Melians when they try to coerce them into going portion of the Athenian imperium. This is apparent when they say, “ … your existent resources are excessively bare to give you a opportunity of endurance against the forces that are opposed to you at this minute. ” The Athenians clearly think that they are superior to the Melians. Furthermore, they did non allow members of the Delian League to retreat their rank. This was shown when Naxos tried to retreat, and the Athenians waged war against them and took down their walls. The haughtiness of the Athenians besides caused them to go overambitious. They started to spread out into mainland Greece, which made city states such as Sparta and Corinth worry. Their enlargement was one of the major factors that lead to the Peloponnesian War. In the war, their overambition caused them to do many dearly-won errors that finally led to their terminal. The haughtiness of the Athenians clearly was a cardinal factor in their devastation.

Three major causes of the rise and autumn of Athens were its democracy, its leading, and its haughtiness. The democracy produced many great leaders, but unluckily, besides many bad leaders. Their haughtiness was a consequence of great leading in the Iranian Wars, and it led to the terminal of Athenian power in Greece.

Democracy

Let ordinary people feel equal to wealthier people

Triremes promoted democracy

Because they felt equal and could do a difference in the authorities, they did non revolt against the authorities

Everyone had a say during the Assemblies

Caused ruin because they made bad determinations

Supported the Sicilian Expedition

After Nicias told them that there was no hope left in contending, they sent over another 15,000 work forces!

Lost 1000s of work forces and merely a smattering of the work forces made it back to Athinais

Besides allowed for bad leaders to be chosen, such as Cleon, who was a leather sixpence

Leadership

Great generals led Athinais to triumph against the Persians

First Iranian War: Sparta refused to assist Athens, so they had merely 10,000 Athenians and 1,000 soldiers from Plataea against 25,000 Iranis

Merely had 10 generals, but Miltiades was make bolding and attacked while the Iranian horse was off

Won overpoweringly, losing merely 192 work forces to Persia ‘s 6,400

Second Persian War: Athens was given bid of the naval forces

Themistocles tricked Xerxes, male monarch of Persia, into believing that the Greek fleet was in confusion, so the Persians attacked and were destroyed by the Grecian triremes

When Athens found a immense sedimentation of Ag, Themistocles ‘ suggested that it be used to construct a immense fleet of triremes

Turned out to be a great thought in the Second Persian War

Bad leading in the Peloponnesian War caused their licking by the Spartans

Cleon, a leather sixpence, convinced the Athenians to establish an onslaught on Sparta

Invading force got stuck on an island merely off shore

Failed after two old ages

Spend a immense sum of financess on this invasion

Alcibiades convinced the Athenians to O.K. of the Sicilian Expedition which was intended to cut off supplies from Sparta and Corinth

Sent a immense force, larger than any other Athinais had antecedently sent anyplace, to take Syracuse

Spent about all of the money in the exchequer

Alcibiades was arrested the twenty-four hours the expedition left for disfiguring public statues, but he escaped and told Sparta all of his programs

Lamachus was killed in the first few yearss of combat, so merely Nicias was left

Nicias missed many chances

Athenians decided to direct another 15000 work forces, commanded by Demosthenes, to assail, but it failed

Even when the orders had been given to sail back to Athens, Nicias was hesitating, and that dark, the full fleet was burned by fire ships

Arrogance

Arrogance after winning both Iranian Wars

Shown in their graphics and sculptures

Portrayed themselves the same as Gods in the Parthenon frieze

Worlds were shown as rational and the barbarians were shown as brainsick animals in the metopes of the Parthenon

Statues of worlds could non be distinguished from Gods

Showed the “ ideal ” human being

Tall and strong

Freedom in motion

Before, they portrayed worlds as all uniform in form and they all held the same position

Pericles ‘ Funeral Oration

“ … I declare that our metropolis is an instruction to Greece. ”

Shows he thinks really extremely of Athinais

Melian Dialogue

“ … your existent resources are excessively bare to give you a opportunity of endurance against the forces that are opposed to you at this minute. ” ]

Clearly condescending

Arrogance caused overambitious actions

Started to spread out into mainland Greece

Made some city states worry such as Sparta and Corinth, which caused the Peloponnesian War

Forced members into the Delian League and would non allow them go forth