The Peloponnesian War (431-335 B.C.)

The Peloponnesian War (431-335 B.C.)

The Peloponnesian War is probably the most important event in the history of ancient Athens since it marks the point of the city's highest peak as well as the beginning of its fall. The Peloponnesian War is divided into 3 basic periods.

The Athenian historian, Thucydides, documents the history of the Peloponnesian War. Thucydides' work is the first scientific historical document and, for this reason, he is considered the father of "scientific history". His objectivity, critical ability, political thinking and scientific disposition are the elements that established Thucydides as the all time model for every aspiring historian.

First Period:

431-421 B.C.
Archidamian war

431-430 B.C.
Peloponnesian invasions in Attica, naval raids of Athenians in the coast of the Peloponnnese, plague in Athens, Pericles conviction and expulsion from general command, siege of Plateaia by the Spartans, re-election of Pericles and his death from the plague.

428-427 B.C.
Secession of Mytilene by the Athenian league and its harsh punishment by the Athenians. Occupation of Plateaia by the Spartans. In the same period, the great ancient philosopher who developed a profound and multifaceted philosophical system, Plato, is born. Plato's philosophical thought is the point of reference for all philosophers, even today, since his works exerted intense influence and various reactions.

425 B.C.
The Athenian General, Demosthenes, seizes a strategic point at Pylos and captures 120 Spartans at Sphacteria. Cleon is declared leader of the radical democrats.

424 B.C.
Defeat of Athenians at Delium. The Spartan General, Brasidas, takes Amphipolis.

422 B.C.
Battle at Amphipolis with Spartans the victors. Cleon and Brasidas are killed in the battle.

421 B.C.
"Peace of Nicias", a peace treaty between Athens and Sparta that was meant to last for fifty years

Second Period:

415-413 B.C.
Sicilian expedition with Alcibiades and Nicias as generals. Indictment of Alcibiades for his participation in the mutilation of Hermai (heads of the god Hermes on a plinth with a phallus). Recall Alcibiades to Athens to stand trial. Alcibiades take refuge to Sparta. Total defeat of the Athenians and death of the generals, Nicias and Demosthenes.

Third Period:

413-404 B.C.
Decelean War or Ionian War.

413 B.C.
Occupation of Decelea by the Spartans.

411 B.C.
Oligarchic reform in Athens. Reaction by the military, which elects Alcibiades for general.

410 B.C.
Navel victory of Alcibiades at Cynossema and Cyzicus. Reestablishment of democracy in Athens, led by Cleophon.

409-408 B.C.
Siege of Chalcedon and Byzantium by Alcibiades and his triumphant return to Athens. The Athenians are defeated at Notium, near Ephesus, which marks the complete fall of Alcibiades.

406 B.C.
Great victory of the Athenians over the Spartan fleet at Arginusae Islands.

405 B.C.
Destruction of the Athenian fleet at Aigospotamoi.

404 B.C.
Athens completes a treaty, resigns from all foreign domination and is obligated to tear down its Long Walls and the Wall of Piraeus.

404-403 B.C.
Period of government by the Thirty Tyrants that impose a terrifying regime. Restoration of democracy by Thrasybulus.

395-386 B.C.
A period during which the "Corinthian War" takes place. The Athenians participate in the war led by generals Conon and Iphicrates. With Persian financing, the Long Walls are rebuilt. During the 4th Century B.C., the Stadium on the left bank of Ilissos river is built, as well as the Temple of Apollo Patroos on the west side of the Ancient Agora, the Chalkotheke and the Sanctuary of Artemis Vravronia on the Acropolis.

377 B.C.
Founding of the second Athenian alliance (Second Athenian Confederacy) with the goal to deal with the spread of the Spartan influence.

358-355 B.C.
Revolt of Athens΄ allies against the "Allied War" and dissolution of the second Athenian league.

349-348 B.C.
Significant political figure of Athens is the great orator Demosthenes, who tries, through his speeches and political activities to rekindle in his fellowmen, the lost fighting spirit for freedom and pride in their country. Outbreak of the War of Olynthus against King Philip II of Macedon that ends with the destruction of Olynthus and the defeat of the Athenian army.

346 B.C.
Peace of Philocrates - Treaty between King Phillip II of Macedon and Athens. The treaty stipulates that both sides keep their winnings.

338 B.C.
Total defeat of the Athenian and Theban armies by King Phillip II of Macedon.

337 B.C.
Participation of the Athenians on common (panhellenic) expedition against the Persians with Philip II of Macedon as leader.

336/335 B.C.
The great Greek philosopher, Aristotle, founds the School of Philosophy in Athens named, "Peripatos" (known to us as the Lyceum of Aristotle).

▶︎ Neolithic Era (4000-3000 B.C.)
▶︎ Bronze Age (3000-1100 B.C.)
▶︎ Archaic Period (8th-6th Centuries B.C.)
▶︎ Classical Era / Classical Greece (5th-4th Centuries B.C.)
▶︎ The Peloponnesian War (431-335 B.C.)
▶︎ Hellenistic Era (323-30 B.C.)
▶︎ Roman Era (29 B.C.-324 A.D.


▶︎ More: Ancient Period of Athens, Figures of Ancient Period, Byzantine Period of Athens, Figures of Byzantine Period, Modern History of Athens, Figures of the 19th Century, Figures of the 20th Century, Greek Mythology, Historical Specials