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The Spartans trained rigorously and progressed through this training system until the age of 20 when they were allowed to join a communal mess and hence become a full citizen of the community.Each member of the mess was expected to provide a certain amount of foodstuffs and to keep training rigorously.
"The father does not have the right to raise the offspring, but he must take it to the place called Lesche, where the elders of the same tribe, sitting as judges, closely examine the child.
If he is strong and of sound body, they command that he be raised, and they assign him an allotment of land from the 9,000 plots.
Recent research suggests that a drought that lasted for three centuries afflicted Greece around the time the Spartan palace burned down.
Archaeologists do know that sometime in the early Iron Age, after 1000 B.
"They also learned how to manage horses; they drove carriages in processions and at the Hyacinthia, a festival of Apollo and Hyacinthus, they raced in two-horse chariots."Spartan woman even competed in the Olympic games, at least in the chariot racing competition, according to ancient writers. C., a Spartan princess named Cynisca (also spelled Kyniska) became the first woman to win at the Olympic games. Their power was counter-balanced by the elected board of ephors (who may only serve a single one-year term).
"She was exceedingly ambitious to succeed at the Olympic games, and was the first woman to breed horses and the first to win an Olympic victory. There was also a Council of Elders (Gerousia), each member of which was over the age of 60 and could serve for life.
"Physical fitness was considered to be as important for females as it was for males, and girls took part in races and trials of strength," writes Sue Blundell in her book "Women in Ancient Greece" (Harvard University Press, 1995). "The Spartans were the first to strip naked and to disrobe openly and anoint themselves with oil after playing sports in the nude," wrote the Greek writer Thucydides in the fifth century B. This desire for some level of equality applies to something as simple as a bowl of soup. It has not been over a fire yet, but soon it will be full of soup, the kind that Alcman, who eats everything, loves hot after the solstice: he doesn't eat any confections, but seeks common, available food just like the people do," reads a poem by Alcman.
This included running, wrestling, discus and javelin throwing. (translation by Nicholas Boterf)Sparta in time developed a system of dual kingship (two kings ruling at once).