Ancient Greece


The Second Athenian Empire: 362-355 BC

   After the bitter defeat at the hands of the Spartans and the dismantling of the Athenian Empire in 404 BC, Athens soon began building its empire even during the period of Spartan hegemony. In 378 BC, Athens formed the Second Athenian Confederation, a league of Aegean city-states; the sole purpose of this confederation was to resist the growth of Spartan power in the Aegean Sea. However, after Sparta had been conclusively defeated in 371 BC and Thebes just as conclusively defeated nine years later, the reason for the league evaporated. Persia no longer seemed to be a threat, and there seemed no reason to pour tribute money into Athens. The Second Athenian Empire, then, soon crumbled in a series of revolts. In 355 BC, when the Athenians gave over the Confederation, Greece had once again become a nation of independent, unallied city-states. In less than two decades, those city-states would disappear forever as political units, to be replaced by a vast kingdom under an ambitious Macedonian king, Philip II.



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1996, Richard Hooker
Updated 9-17-96