CIV 311/HIST 301 FINAL EXAM GUIDE
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I. Short Answers (1-5 points each: 40%)
III. Post-Midterm Essay (30%)
IV. Comprehensive essay (30%)
Part I: At least 75% of the Short Answer questions will pertain to the following items. The asterisked items are possible topics for 4-5 point questions
Agesilaos, King of Sparta*
Alexander III (i.e. the Great)
Battle of Aigospotamoi
Battle of Chaeroneia
Battle of Cunaxa
Battle of Gaugamela
Battle of Leuktra*
Battle of Tanagra
Demosthenes the Orator
Earthquake in Sparta
Ephialtes the Athenian
Hermokopeia (mutilation of Herms)*
The Killing of Eratosthenea
League of Corinth
Long Walls of Athens*
Melos & the Melian dialogue*
Pausanias the Spartan Regent
Peace of Nikias*
Pericles' Building program*
Plague of Athens*
Revolt of Mytilene*
Second Athenian Sea League
The Egyptian Revolt
The Peloponnesian League*
The Theban Sacred Band
PARTS III and IV Essays should be concise but answer the question completely. They should be well-organized and carefully written. In them you should support assertions with specific references to evidence and examples, referring to primary sources as frequently as possible. WARNING: Questions on the exam will be worded differently from the way they appear here, and may indeed be more specific.
PART III: Post-Midterm Essay. At least six of the following topics will appear, of which you will choose ONE to write on
1. In the debate over the revolt of Mytilene, Cleon is said by Thucydides to have made the following statement: "I have often before now been convinced that a democracy is incapable of empire... " Was Cleon right? How did internal Athenian politics affect the management of the Athenian empire, and did the democratic form of government Athens had prevent her from keeping her empire together?
2. To what extent is the division between the aristocratic class and the common people important to the history of Athens following the democratic reforms of Cleisthenes? How is this division reflected in the leadership of the city, and in the overall way in which citizens of the city relate to one another?
3. Discuss the outbreak of the Peloponnesian war. Identify the most important trends, events and individuals who had a role in bringing the peace of 445 to an end. Can one state or individual be identified as being most responsible?
4. Though she was viewed as the dominant military power until late in the classical period, Sparta never succeeded in establishing a lasting hegemony over other Greek city states. Trace the history of Sparta's relations with the rest of the Greek world in the fifth and fourth centuries, and explain her lack of success in this area.
5. Evaluate the following statement by Thucydides: "After [Pericles'] death, his foresight with regard to the war became even more evident. For Pericles had said that Athens would be victorious if she bided her time and took care of her navy, if she avoided trying to add to the empire during the course of the war and if she did nothing to risk the safety of the city itself. But his successors did the exact opposite... [their] policies, when successful, only brought credit and advantage to individuals, and when they failed, the whole war potential of the state was impaired."
6. Compare and contrast Herodotus and Thucydides as historians. Examine the aims, methods and biases of both, and identify their strengths and weaknesses. Which is a more trustworthy source for the history of Greece?
7. Discuss the role of envy in Athenian politics of the fifth and fourth century. Was success, and the envy and suspicion it invited, a debilitating factor in the career of Athenian politicians?
8. Discuss the following statement by one of the leading ancient historians of the early 20th century: "Women had no role in the history of Athena's city [i.e. Athens]
9. How did the practice of warfare change from the fifth to the fourth centuries, and what affect did these changes have on the balance of power in the Greek world?
10. Compare the empire of the Athenians of the fifth century with that of the Macedonians of the fourth. What similarities and differences are there in terms of the acquisition, mangement and justification for each.
IV. Comprehensive Essays. The best grades in this category will be reserved for those essays that draw on material from the entire course of the semester.(in addition to fulfilling the other criteria mentioned above).
At least FOUR of the following topics will appear; you will be asked to write on ONE.
1. Discuss the lack of political unity in the Greek world. How might Greek history have been different had the Greeks been able to unify?
2. Trace the development of democratic institutions in Athens during the Archaic and classical period.
3. Sketch the history of warfare amongst the Greeks, including changes in technology, tactics and professionalism.
4. Some historians claim that economy is everything -- that you can understand just about everthing important that happens in the history of a society if you know what economic resources it has, what it lacks, and to what lengths the people must go to get what they needs for survival, comfort and the maintenance of social status. Could the history of ancient Greece be used as evidence either for or against this theory?
5. Imagine a conversation between Solon and Alcibiades on the topic of Athenian government and society.
6. Examine the history and the consequences of the Greeks' interaction with their neighbors to the east, including the Persians.
7. Write a commentary explaining the following verses by the poet (and classical scholar) Louis MacNeice. Comment especially on the last lines ("And how one can imagine....").Is he being serious or sarcastic?
And when I should remember the paragons of Hellas
I think instead
Of the crooks, the adventurers, the opportunists,
The careless athletes and the fancy boys,
The hair-splitters, the pedants, the hard-boiled sceptics
And the Agora and the noise
Of the demagogues and the quacks; and the women pouring
Libations over graves
And the trimmers at Delphi and the dummies at Sparta and lastly
I think of the slaves.
And how one can imagine oneself among them
I do not know;
It was all so unimaginably different
And all so long ago.