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HAMMOND In the 200-300 years before the C5th BC Gk interstate relationships became more complicated and sophisticated Initially these were governed mainly by religious considerations - oracles shrines festivals pilgrimages and Amphictyones were universally recognised and guarantee against attack 166 Commecially interstate contacts increased Eg at Naucratis the Hellenium founded by 9 states and the market was controlled by their trade representatives After the Second Messian War c 640-620 Sparta reached her artistic and commercial peak 166 Her conservative constitution was confirmed she deposed the last tyrant at Corinth c 582 and helped probably Elis gain control of the Olympic festival 167 Significantly Sparta fought with and defeated Tegea BUT instead of annexing Tegeas territory Sparta made a permanent settlement with her on the basis of a defensive alliance The treaty probably contained a clause under which Tegea undertook to banish all Messenians from her territory This soon after 560 This alliance marked the transition to a new policy of which the declared aims were liberation from tyranny and prtoection against Argos Hamm stressed that these declarations were welcomed by other states and well timed because tyranny was in decline and Argos truculence was causing concern Spartas track-record was good she favoured Delphi had liberated Corinth from tyranny and had struck a permanent alliance with Tegea She had also declared herself the champion of non-Dorian people by paying reverence to Orestes their hero She intended to extend the permanent alliances to blunt the power of Argos this was of advantage to other states because of Spartas military strength The Spartan policy initiated probably by her famous statesman Chilon was brilliantly successful Many states in the central and northern Peloponnese accepted the offer of alliance In 555 Sicyon and possibly Philius and Megara were liberated from tyrants Modern scholars have called it rather misleadingly the Peloponnesian League The ancient name the Lacedaemonians and their Allies was literally and substantially correct
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