Although the Greeks of different communities shared a common language and many of the same customs and beliefs, they did not have much to do with one another due to geographic separation. No single community had power over the others. Each controlled its own affairs. A sense of unity, however, began to develop among the people of each community, and the outlines of Greek civilization were formed. Chapter 10 focuses on the development of two Greek city-states.
Section 1 describes why the polis was the geographic and political center of Greek life.
Section 2 discusses the harsh life in the military city-state of Sparta. Spartans rejected new ideas, believing that change would weaken their way of life.
Section 3 explores life in the city-state of Athens and examines the Persian Wars and their effects on Greece. Athens put into effect the world's first democratic constitution. After the defeat of the Persians, Athens became Greece's leading polis. After the Peloponnesian War with Sparta, the city-state lost its status and power.
Section 4 focuses on the decline of the city-states. After the Peloponnesian War, most Greeks began to lose their sense of community. After the war, Sparta ruled Greece until a group of city-states overthrew Spartan rule. No longer united, Greece could not fight off invaders and was conquered by Macedonia.