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The Lysistrata of Aristophanes Aristophanes was a satirist who produced Lysistrata around 413 BC when the news of Athens warships had been destroyed near Sicily For twenty-one years while Athens was engaged in war he relentlessly and wittliy attacked the war the ideals of the war the war party and the war spirit This risked his acceptance and his Athenian citizenship Lysistrata is probably the oldest comedy which has retained a place in modern theatre It primarily deals with two themes war and the power of sexuality Lysistrata an invented name meaning She Who Puts an End to War has summoned the women of Athens to meet her at the foot of Acropolis She puts before them the easy invitation that they must never lie again with their husbands until the war is ended At first they shudder and withdraw and refuse until with the help of the women from Sparta and Thebes they are impelled to agree The women seize the Acropolis from which Athens is funding the war After days of sexually depriving their men in order to bring peace to there communities They defeat back in an attack from the old men who had remained in Athens while the younger men are on their crusade When their husbands return from battle the women reject sex and stand guard at Acropolis The sex strike portrayed in risqu episodes finally pressure the men of Athens and Sparta to consent to a peace treaty Ancient Greece in 431 BC was not a nation It was a collection of rival city-states that were allies with each other or with leading military powers Athens was a great naval power while Sparta relied mainly on its army for superiority In 431 BC these alliances went to war against each other in a conflict called the Peleponnesian War The war which went on for 27 years is named for the Peloponnesus the peninsula on which Sparta is located
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