Argo nel IV secolo: forza militare, debolezza politica
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The ancient sources for a detailed study about Argos’ history in the fourth century are relatively few. In the years after the end of the Peloponnesian war it is possible to assume a democratic orientation for Argos: the town was the destination of all those who were against the hard regime that the Thirties had set up in Athens. In the period of the Corinthian war Argos seems to have an important role by the military point of view: Argos belongs to the antispartan coalition from the beginning (it was one of the receiver of the Timocrates’ gold) and then in the course of the war the sources clearly show its military power (in 392, 391 and 388 Agesilaos performed three expeditions in the Peloponnese). Up to the King’s peace Argos has a significant military power which finds a support in Corinth for its struggle against Sparta. Its internal politics, however, was instable, as the 370’s civil war (scitalism) shows; probably, because of this internal instability, Argos really did not succeed to develop his leading role of the Peloponnese, as instead it could have done by virtue of its military strength. In the years of the Theban hegemony, Argos is close to Arcadians, who wanted to get the command of the Peloponnese. The two Theban expeditions in the Peloponnese, the help supplied to Euphron of Sikion, the case of Phlyus and the battle of Ornai are all examples in which Argos fights near Arcadians against the Spartans. In the last years of the century, we notice the passage from the favour given to Philip II to the resistance to Alexander, owed to the ancient loyalty of Argives to Thebes that had risen against Alexander. The lack of the sources does not allow to formulate an hypothesis about the internal political situation of Argos for this period. The total judgement is, however, that of a strong power by the military point of view, but politically unsettled; and this element, probably, conditioned a great part of its history in the fourth century.
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