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Peloponnesian Civil And Revolutionary Wars History Essay


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The Peloponnesian War, the American Revolutionary War, and the American Civil War have many similarities and differences. Among these include causes of the wars, mainly political and based out of fear, fighting methods and weapons, as well as navies and outcomes. Throughout the three wars, there were many parallels, such as similarly in causes, resolutions, and military tactics, as well as the fact that human nature leads to armed conflict in many situations; It is apparent that war has not changed much in the 2,000 years it has been since the Peloponnesian War.

The Peloponnesian war was a war between Athens and Sparta, fought from 431 to 404 BC. It went on for twenty-seven years and was recounted by Thucydides. Thucydides account was one of the first actual accounts of a war. The war began because Athens was controlling, and was trying to make the other city-states democratic, which caused a lot of tension between Athens and Sparta. The Spartans eventually invaded the Athenian farmland, which began the Peloponnesian war. The Athenian navy attacked Sparta's allies and was driven back by fatalities. In the end, Sparta and Persia blocked Athens's food supply, and Athens finally was forced to surrender.

The American Revolutionary War was a war between the thirteen original colonies of America and Great Britain. It began because the colonists were rejecting the Parliament of Great Britain to govern them, believing that they did not have a proper representation in Parliament. The colonists also believed that Parliament was controlling them too much. They believed that they should have the full democratic rights of Englishmen like those living in Great Britain. (Lancaster, 25) The British believed that the colonies were just colonies, and could be used however best suited Great Britain, meaning they could tax and control them however they wanted. The inconsistent views caused war to break out between the colonies and Great Britain. The war lasted for nine years. Finally, in 1783, the Treaty of Paris and Treaty of Versailles were signed and the war came to an end, leaving the colonies free to be their own country, have their own government, and govern themselves however, they chose to do so.

The American Civil War was a war to "preserve the Union of the United States of America." (McPherson, 26) It was between the Federalists and Anti-Federalists; the Federalists believed that the federal government should maintain their power for the survival of the Union. The Anti-federalists on the other hand, believed that the United States should maintain their sovereignty in the new nation, believing that each state should determine its own laws within its borders. They believed they should not have to follow the federal government's laws. There were many arguments over taxes, internal improvements, military and slavery. Eleven of the Southern States seceded from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America. After a five-year battle, the Union States won the war, and abolished slavery for good, as well as strengthened the central government.

Causes and tactics

One major cause of the Peloponnesian war was that the Spartans were fearful of the Athenians power, growth, and wealth. (Hanson, 9)They were also upset over the thirty-year peace they had agreed to between them. According to Thucydides, the Athenians then became "power hungry" (Hanson, 9) and wanted to confirm their power on the mainland of Greece. Pericles had combined Athenian resources, and made Athens' navy stronger, as well as formed an alliance with Corcyra, another strong naval power and one of Corinth's major enemies. Athens also improved alliances with countries in the west.

The food supply was in danger, because Athens was threatening a monopoly of seaborne trade. The Peloponnesian war was mostly a trade war. Corinth encouraged Sparta to attack. The Spartans were also ready to start a war, and they were just waiting for an opportunity to attack Athens. The Spartans refused any negotiations offered by Pericles and sent an ultimatum that would have destroyed Athenian power had they taken it. Pericles advised his people to refuse and Sparta declared war with Athens (Martin, 56). This war then lasted for twenty-seven years.

The Corinthians were also angry with the Athenians for supporting Corcyra, their enemy. The Spartans feared that Athens would use their advantage to destroy the Spartans control over the Peloponnesian league (Martin, 56). The Athenians believed that the gods would favor them in the war for having followed all of their obligations. (Martin, 124) Had Sparta not been so eager for war, then peace probably would have lasted between Athens and Sparta, but because Sparta was so eager for war, the Peloponnesian war began and lasted for twenty-seven years.

Large movements and extensive fighting took place from Sicily to the coast of Asia Minor, and from the Hellespont and Thrace to Rhodes. The Peloponnesian war was the first war in history to be recorded by an eyewitness historian, Thucydides. The war began on the 4th of April 431 BC and did not end until the 25th of April 404 BC. (Martin, 147)

"The real cause I consider to be the one which was formally most kept out of sight. The growth of the power of Athens, and the alarm which this inspired in Lacedaemon, made war inevitable." (Thucydides, 12)

In comparison, the United States Civil War began with economic and social discrepancies between the north and south. "The Civil War lasted from 1861 to 1865 and led to over 618,000 casualties. 94,000 confederates of about 1,300,000 died in forty-eight major battles of the four-year war and about 110,000 out of 2,900,000 Union Soldiers. The higher casualty rate of the confederates is explained by lower rates of desertion and more frequent commitment of units in a smaller army to action. It is estimated that 400,000 or more died of disease or hardship total." (Randall, Donald, 371)

During the first half of the nineteenth century, the United States expanded at an amount that was unmatched in modern history. The growth occurred in three proportions, territory, population, and economic. (Randall, Donald, 206) The growth, however, was achieved at a high cost to certain groups in North America. White men were illegally seizing Indian lands and killing the Natives or driving them further to the west. The expansion was due in part, to the slave-grown tobacco and cotton. The United States was quickly becoming the largest slaveholding country in the world. The political tensions of the development threatened to destroy the nation, these tensions due mostly to slavery, and to the divisions between the free and slave-holding states. This caused a conflict over whether the land would be free or slave holding. Originally, the northern states reached a conclusion to count each slave as three-fifths of a person for the population basis of representation in the Electoral College. Another conflict was that they had a clause forbidding for twenty years "the passage of a law to prohibit importation of slaves, and a clause requiring slaves to be returned even after they had escaped into the free Northern states." (Randall, Donald, 216) The South was pushing for the new lands to be slave-holding states, and the North was pushing for the land to be free. Eventually they came to somewhat of a compromise allowing Missouri to be added as a slave state, but the rest of the Louisiana Purchase was to remain free. This settled the issue for a while, until the Mexican war caused the issue to come up again. By 1860, the Free states had a population of nineteen million and the slave states had a population of just about twelve million. "The election of the president by Northern antislavery parties in 1860 was the first main cause of the slave states wanting to secede from the nation, and caused the first fights of the civil war." (Randall, Donald, 216)

Cotton, in the south, had become lucrative following the creation of the cotton gin, and rise in plantations and moving to other crops caused a necessity for a large amount of inexpensive labor. Therefore, they needed a larger amount of slaves. The south became an economy dependent on the growth of cotton. The northern economy was largely based on industry. The industries in the north were purchasing the cotton and turning it into the finished goods. This set up major differences in economic attitudes, because the south was based upon plantations, while the north was based on city life (Randall, Donald, 36). Society in the north evolved because people of different cultures and classes needed to work together. Since the time of the Revolution, two different groups emerged, those fighting for greater state rights and those fighting for the federal government to have more control. Many argued that the constitution overlooked the states' rights to act independently. They felt the states should have the right to decide if they were willing to accept certain federal acts. The states felt that they were "no longer respected". (Randall, Donald, 28)

There was also a fight between which states would be slave states and which would be non-slave states. There was a huge battle arguing whether new lands would be slave or non-slave. Another issue was the Kansas-Nebraska act of 1854, this act created two new territories that would allow the states to use popular sovereignty to determine whether they would be free or slave. There was much tension, causing a battle in Kansas, called "bleeding Kansas".

The northern states became more and more against slavery, especially after the passage of the fugitive slave act, which held individuals responsible for protecting fugitive slaves even if they were in non-slave states. The final cause of the start of the war, however, was the election of Abraham Lincoln in 1860. South Carolina then issues its "declaration of the causes of secession" (Randall, Donald, 312) because they believed that Lincoln was anti-slavery and in favor of the north. Seven states seceded from the union before Lincoln was elected, including South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas. The most important causes Southerners listed for the war were unfair taxation, states' rights, and the slavery issue, and strengthening the role of the Central Government in America.

In the American Civil war, Industry was used for the first time including railroads, steamships, telegraph, and mass-produced weapons. This is a major difference between the wars, as this is the only war that industry was used in. It is the deadliest war in American history, leaving over 600,000 dead. (Randall, Donald, 64)

Major causes of the Revolutionary war included many political causes. Americans considered the British point of view irrational and oppressive. The British were trying to execute taxes on the Americans, they thought that the Americans should "carry their fair share of the debt burden" (Lancaster, 46) from the wars that the British had been fighting. The Englishmen found the colonists attitude to be outrageous, and thought them to be uncooperative.

The biggest cause to the Revolutionary war was probably the Stamp Act. As Lord Chesterfield put it "It has given such terror to the Americans that our trade with them will not be, for some years, what it used to be…"(Lancaster 47). The Americans considered it, not to be an act of trade or revenue, but an act of tyranny, because the Americans had never been consulted, the act was just passed with no consultation to the colonists. The Stamp act was an act that taxed the Americans to pay for the costs of the French and Indian war. It was a tax on all printed materials, such as pamphlets, newspapers, and commercial documents. (Lancaster, 50) This led to boycotts of British goods, as well as a formal declaration of American grievances and rights. They called themselves the Stamp Act Congress. Parliament repealed the Stamp Act in 1766, however, the colonists already had the foundation set for the American Revolution. The colonists were enraged by the stamp tax, because of the standard it was setting, because in the past, taxes were viewed as measures to regulate commerce, and not to raise money. The Stamp Act, was executed to raise money, and was done without the colonists approval. Their opinion was that if this tax were to pass without any fight, then there would be more taxes like it to come. They also considered it a violation of their rights to be taxed without their agreement.

Another cause to the Revolution was the Townshend Acts. These acts came into place when Charles Townshend replaced William Pitt as Prime Minister of Great Britain. Townshend, unlike Pitt, did not care about the rights of the American colonists. He was only concerned with strengthening the power of Parliament, convincing Parliament to pass laws, which forced new taxes upon the colonists, believing that external taxes would be acceptable. New taxes were placed on items such as paper, lead, glass, paint and tea, which were imported. (Lancaster, 60) He also suspended the New York Legislature until they agreed to quarter the British soldiers. The colonists absolutely refused to quarter the British soldiers.

For the Revolutionary War, the Revolution came almost accidentally. Most of the colonists wished at first that they would not have to have a war; it was only progressively that the events caused the colonists to rebel and caused a war, it was never their intent to have a war with Great Britain.

In the Revolutionary War, there were many different causes, not one specific cause that started the war. The first main cause was when the "great commoner"(Lancaster, 60) William Pitt, halted the illegal wartime trade between the mainland colonies and the French West Indies. The Writs of Assistance were the main cause of this. "These writs gave permission to officers to enter by force, any warehouses, stores or homes and search for smuggled goods without having any evidence, or suspected any of these goods. They did not have to have any pretense in these searches." (Lancaster, 62)

Another cause was the Molasses Act of 1733. This act imposed a tax of six pence per gallon on the colonists imports of foreign molasses; however, it was not to promise income, but to make sure that the British West Indian Sugar Company kept a monopoly on the market. The colonists highly opposed this tax, complained that it was moderately high, and that its implementation would ruin their economy. Next was the sugar act. The colonists were starting to rebel, and disagree with British policies. The Townshend acts and Tea tax were other events leading up to the Revolution.

Another major event leading up to the Revolution was the "Boston Massacre" this was an event in which, on the evening of March 5, 1770, crowds of people were throwing snowballs at British officers outside the Custom House. Troops came out to help the officer, but the mobs kept coming in closer. Captain Preston kept telling his men not to fire, however, one of the

British soldiers fired anyways into the crowd, causing a few other shots to be fired. Five of the people ended up dead and even more wounded. This caused severe anger among the people of Boston. (Lancaster, 70)

Another final and major factor in causing the war was the Tea Act. This act gave the East India tea Company a monopoly on tea trade. Though tea was now less expensive than it had been, it still carried the tax, which angered the Americans. "On December 16, 1773, 150 disguised Boston Patriots boarded English ships and dumped 342 chests of tea into the harbor."(Lancaster, 94) This angered the British more than anything previously. As one Englishman put it, it was "The most wanton and unprovoked insult offered to the civil power that is recorded in history."(Lancaster, 94). From then on, relations between the colonies and Britain went downhill and the circumstances slowly got worse.

The "Intolerable Acts", however, was the final setback to the Americans that started off the Revolution. The "Coercive Acts" as it was referred to by the British, was an act that was passed until the colonists would pay back the East India Tea Company for the tea that was dumped into the harbor. (Lancaster, 75) The Acts included closing the Boston harbor port, and the Royal governor controlled the Massachusetts government, and all sheriffs would become royal appointees. The British also forced the colonists to quarter any soldiers anywhere in the Colonies. (Lancaster, 75)

A famous quote by John Adams was that one of the most important factors in the Revolution was that "there had to be a Revolution in the minds, and the hearts of the people" (Lancaster, 56) before change could take place. This was a major result of the Stamp Act. The Stamp Act caused the people of even the lowest classes to rebel against the British and push more towards a Revolution. They began to train soldiers and practice for a full out war.

For the Civil, Revolutionary, and Peloponnesian wars, fear was a common factor in causing the wars. Fear of power for the Spartans, and for the United States southern states, fear of the new constitution, as well as fear that their way of life would be interrupted. They feared that slavery would be banned and they feared that they would not have enough power. Therefore, in these cases, fear was a common factor causing the wars. In the Revolutionary war, fear was also a factor. The colonists feared the laws and restrictions that Great Britain would impose, and thought that if they could impose one tax or law upon them, that they could impose any unfair laws or taxes upon them.


The outcomes of the wars are also very similar and different in their own ways. In the Peloponnesian war, Athens ended up losing their empire. Here is an example of what happened:

Athens lost its empire and consequently the source of revenue, which had supported its dominant navy. Sparta and its allies achieved temporary land dominance until Thebes and its allies, leaving a three-way standoff in dominance in mainland Greece, overthrew this.

By 448 BC, Athens had exhausted Persia's will to sustain the war and peace was made. Athenian interventions eventually turned Corinth and others against Athens and provoked an outbreak out hostilities. Eventually in 433 wars broke out between Athens and Corinth. In 432 Sparta joined in, and started the Peloponnesian war Proper, which ended in Spartan victory. The aftermath eventually left Greece open to conquest and enforced unification at the hands of the Macedonians. (Martin, 165)

The outcome of the civil war was that slavery was eliminated in the United States. The south had far fewer soldiers and far less supplies for their army. This was partially why they lost the war. The soldiers of the South suffered from lack of food, clothing, shoes and blankets. By the end of the war, they were weakened by starvation and illness. Therefore, on April 2, 1865, the Northern army broke into Petersburg and General Lee of the southern army came to the realization that, he would be trapped if he chose to keep his army around Richmond. He headed west. Grant's army surrounded the Southerners and two days later. Lee and Grant met in Virginia where the Confederate leaders surrendered the remains of their army, because the Union army was better trained and better equipped to continue the fight, they won. The Confederates knew that had no chance against the Union soldiers in their already weakened state, and therefore they surrendered.

In the Peloponnesian war, Pericles on the eve of fighting said that war was inevitable. There was unease that this would be a new unlimited civil struggle. The Corinthians warned the Spartans to stop their old-fashioned strategies of war and find new ways to destroy Athens. There were at least fifty-five straightforward naval actions, land battles and sieges. There is no record of how many were killed or lost in these battles. (Martin, 155)

The Greeks had a galley called the Trireme. Lightness and balance not seaworthiness and protection, were the chief aims in building these ships. Crew could row at nearly fifty strokes a minute, to speeds of up to ten knots.

From 411 to 404, the Athenians met the Spartans and their allies in at least seven major engagements. To win, the Spartans had to kill off, capture or scatter at least 50,000 Athenian and allied sailors and sink about 200 ships. These last battles are sometimes called the Ionian war.

Navy was a big part of the Peloponnesian war. Spears, javelins, bows, warship rams were the main weapons used during the Peloponnesian war. During the civil war, the majority of the weapons used were artillery or canons, and small arms. Bayonets, sabers, swords, short swords, cutlasses, Bowie knives, pikes, and lances were used as well, but accounted for very few of the casualties. Though the civil war is not thought of as a naval war, ships did play a big part of it. There were some naval battles. The Navy was a big part of the Peloponnesian war.

The Peloponnesian war started with Pericles rejecting all negotiations. He insisted on starting a war to revive his fading popularity, and no accommodation to Spartan demands was possible because Athenian freedoms of action were at stake. The war between Sparta and Athens began in 431 and carried on for twenty-seven years. The Thirty-year peace made in 445 was destroyed. (Martin, 124)

Causes of the Peloponnesian war were focused on disputes between Athens and Sparta in the 430s dealing with allies. The outbreak came when the Spartans issued demands to Athens that the Athenian assembly rejected urged to do so by Pericles. The Spartans then threatened open warfare unless Athens lifted its economic sanctions against Megara and stopped its military blockade of Potidaea. The Corinthians were also angry with the Athenians for supporting Corcyra. The Spartans then feared that Athens would use their superiority to destroy the Spartans control over the Peloponnesian league. Thus started the Peloponnesian war. The Athenians believed that the gods would favor them in the war for having valued their obligations.

Athens had fatigued Persia's will to sustain the war and peace was made. Athenian interventions eventually turned Corinth and others against Athens and provoked an outbreak of hostilities. Eventually in 433 wars broke out between Athens and Corinth. In 432 Sparta joined in, and started the Peloponnesian war Proper, which ended in Spartan victory. The aftermath eventually left Greece open to conquest and enforced unification at the hands of the Macedonians.

Pericles on the eve of fighting said that war was inevitable. There was uneasiness that this would be a new unrestricted civil struggle. The Corinthians warned the Spartans to stop their old-fashioned strategies of war and find new ways to destroy Athens. There were at least fifty-five clear-cut naval engagements, land battles and sieges. There is no record of how many were killed or lost in the battles. (Hanson, 174)

The Greeks had a galley called the Trireme. "Lightness and balance not seaworthiness and protection, were the chief aims in building these ships. Crew could row at nearly fifty strokes a minute, to speeds of up to ten knots." (Hanson, 236) These ships could carry about 200 sailors, officers and marines.

From 411 to 404, the Athenians met the Spartans and their allies in at least seven major engagements. To win, the Spartans had to kill off, capture or scatter at least 50,000 Athenian and allied sailors and sink about 200 ships. These last battles are sometimes called the Ionian war. (Hanson, 124)

Revolutionary War, causes include the fact that the people had moved to the "new world" to escape Great Britain, and not have to deal with the taxes and other laws that were being imposed on them; however, they soon were faced with the same oppressive government in the new world. The main cause was the taxes and not being represented. They wanted to be an independent nation, completely separate from Great Britain.

The outcome of the revolutionary war was that the 13 colonies were freed from British rule. Trade was also reconnected between the colonies and other parts of the world (which is similar to the Peloponnesian war because they were also afraid of trade being cut off). The United States enlisted a total of about 200,000 soldiers and sailors during the war. Battle casualties were 4435 dead and 6188 wounded. An estimated 20,000 Americans died of non-combat causes. Treaty of Paris was signed on Sept. 3, 1783 and Great Britain recognized the independence of the United States. The Americans then elected their first president, George Washington. (Lancaster, )

The Continental Navy eventually put into service 50 or 60 ships; the Colonies' navies added another 40 or so. In comparison, the British Navy in 1775 had 270 ships and by 1783 had enlarged the number to 468. Although the collective American navies were unable to cope with the British fleets, they sank or captured nearly 200 royal ships. (Lancaster 123)

The Greeks had a galley called the Trireme. Lightness and balance not seaworthiness and protection, were the main purposes in building these ships. Crew could row at nearly fifty strokes a minute, to speeds of up to ten knots.

The Peloponnesian war easily divides itself into three phases. Concluded by a truce in 421, there were ten years of intermittent fighting. This truce phase, named after the Athenian general Nicias, lasted until 415. A large attack against Sicily by Athens began the final phase. This operation was so disastrous for Athens that the city was scarcely able to uniformly recover. In 411, the democracy at Athens was also temporarily overturned, and the city remained in political disarray for years. Though democracy had been restored, countless leaders could not agree to any truce terms, and many wanted to continue to fight the war, no matter what it took. Battles raged on for the next six years. Athens rebuilt its fleet, while Sparta and its allies created their own navy. Under Lysander, the end came for Athens in 405, when he defeated the Athenians in the battle of Aegospotami.

One major consequence of the Peloponnesian war was that Athens lost its empire and the source of revenue that had supported its navy. Sparta and it allies achieved temporary land domination until the Thebes and its allies, left a three-way standoff of dominance in the mainland of Greece, and they overthrew them. The destruction of the 27-year war left the Hellenic world less united and less capable of confronting Persia when they attacked. The postwar partitions and ongoing struggles between Athens and Sparta enabled Persia to become involved. The weakened situation left the mainland of Greece open to the expansion of Phillip II of Macedonia, and he declared himself as leader of Greece and determined to eliminate any Persian dominance. After his assassination, Alexander the Great was able to declare himself leader of Greece, and proceeded to destroy the Persian Empire.

In the Peloponnesian war there were five phases, Phase one was from 431-427 BC. In Phase one, Sparta relied on the traditional strategy of Greek warfare, in hopes that by invading Attica and destroying the crops, it would force Athens to peace, or they would have to fight the battle. The major issues with this strategy was that Athens could not be starved into surrender or made to fight by occupation of its individual citizens farmlands, since her food supplies came mostly from Egypt. The Spartans were sure of their strategy. They knew their city walls were not penetrable and connected Athens to the sea of Piraeus and that their navy could ensure food supply. This was their main defensive strategy.

After the Spartans invaded, the rural population of Attica moved into the city, and Athens became unable to be attacked. Athens's fleet secured the empire against any revolts. Every spring and Autumn the Athenian army would devastate the lands of Sparta's allies while the Spartans were tending to their crops. This strategy, however, had many weaknesses, for he had missed the opportunity of combined land and sea actions to bring a higher cruelty of war to the Spartans.

Athens offered peace in 430, however the Spartans declined. In 430-429 Potidaea finally surrendered, and this helped to encourage the Athenian position. In the fall of 429, Athens won two major naval battles.

Phase two of the Peloponnesian War began when, in 426, under the direction of their new political leaders Cleon and Demosthenes , they began more active operations. In 425 Athens won a great victory at Spacteria. In 424, All the Athenian offensive plans ended up failing, and the admirals were forced to return from Sicily. In 422, Brasidas, a Spartan leader, continued to have victories despite Athenian assistances. He killed Cleon but died as well, leaving two of the greatest advocates of the war dead. In 421, there was a peace treaty between Athens and Sparta, and it was hoped that the war would soon be ended.

In Phase three, from 421 to 417, Corinth and Thebes refused to listen to the peace treaty, and while Athens gave up its Spartan prisoners, neither Sparta nor Athens fulfilled their other obligations.. Athens also obtained a new democratic leader, Alcibiades, making Athens hope they could attack more offensively, and hoped to cut off Spartan and Corinthian supplies from Sicily. This did not work, however, and ended badly for Alcibiades, being forced to flee to Sparta to escape charges against him. They began the campaign, however, they were defeated when supplies ran out, and the Athenian fleet was blocked and defeated in battle. Survivors were enslaved, while generals were executed.

In phase four, the Spartans officially resumed war in August of 414, Greece now fully expecting Athens to lose. Sparta now had many additional reinforcements and Athens had lost its fleet as well as wore out their treasury. In 413, Athens was caught up in a blockade, blocking all their silver mines, and the empire fell apart, causing many revolts. Another party seized power in Athens and wanted to offer surrender however, this was not agreed upon by the Democratic Party. Athens was now dependent of Crimea for food, because of the blockade. This did not look good for Athens.

In phase five of the war, the Spartans finally offered peace after the battle of Arginusae in 406. The Athenians refused their offer. Soon after, the Spartans blockaded Athens by cutting off their grain supply. Athens finally surrendered to the terms offered by the Spartans after about six months of starvation, with no relief in sight.

The aftermath of the Peloponnesian war was that though the Peloponnesian war ended, the conflicts did not. There were still conflicts among the prominent Greek City-states. "In the fifty years that followed the Peloponnesian war, Sparta, Thebes and Athens struggled militarily to win a preeminent position without, in the end, achieving anything more than weakening each other and creating a vacuum of power on the international level." (Martin, 174) Macedonia ended up rising to power militarily and politically under the reign of Philip II. He formed the League of Corinth, and planned to make war against Persia. Alexander the Great took over after Phillip II was murdered, and conquered all of the Persian Empire. Athens never regained their economic and military strength that it had had in the past.

In the aftermath of the Revolutionary War, a formal treaty of Peace was signed on September 3, 1783, eight years after the first battle of the war. Great Britain now acknowledged the colonies as their own separate country. When the war ended, the Americans were working under the Articles of Confederation. In 1787, Nationalists called the Philadelphia convention, and they drafted a constitution, which would provide a stronger federal government. This government would have a president, congress would handle the power of taxation, and there would be a balance between all of the branches including the judicial, executive and legislative branches. The new president George Washington took office in March of 1789, creating the new system of government of the United States of America.

The aftermath of the American Civil War began when General Robert E. Lee surrendered on April 9, 1865 to the Union General Ulysses S. Grant. Abraham Lincoln's plan was to reconstruct the South, however, this never happened due to his assassination, April 14, 1865. The states eventually ended up a stronger union because of the Civil War, because there were no longer any questions regarding whether they would secede from the nation. It brought the states closer together and made them more unified. Most importantly, however, the end of the Civil war brought slavery to an official end in the southern states.

There are many reasons why even though the Peloponnesian war was 2,436 years in the past, we still study it. One reason included that it was a "brutal and very long struggle"(Hanson, 5) because of this, many that were born after the first years of the war, often would fight and die in the fighting before the war was over. It destroyed families, and it reminds us that war is destructive, and can tear people apart. It is also because there are so many parallels between the Peloponnesian war and so many other wars in history. It is also because of Thucydides that we study the Peloponnesian war, because Thucydides was an important philosopher of the time. He believed that human nature is unchanging across time and space, and is predictable, and that the war between Athens and Sparta should serve as a lesson for what can happen to anyone at any time. He uses the themes of abuse and power and how it changes men over time. Thucydides is also important because he was not only a theorist but also a player in the war that he wrote about. Though he is bias towards one side, he wanted to hear both sides of the story, and report as much truthfully of the war as possibly, using interviews and speeches and recording them as closely as possible.

In conclusion, the Peloponnesian War, American Revolutionary War, and the American Civil War, are all similar in cause and resolution, as well as the fact that they are each based out of fear. Fears, as well as human nature are major causes of wars in the world. War has not changed much in over 2,000 years since the beginning of the Peloponnesian war to the end of the American Civil War, and even to current wars today, there are still many similar causes, strategies, and resolutions.

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