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Lӯsander

(d. 395 bc)


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(d. 395 bc).

Spartan general. His family, though of Heraclid origin, was poor. He became the erastēs (‘lover’) of Agesilaus, younger son of King Archidamus II. Appointed admiral in 408 or 407, he gained the friendship and support of Cyrus 2 the Younger, began to create a personal following, and won a victory at Notion which led to the dismissal of Alcibiades. Resuming command in 405, he transferred his fleet to the Hellespont and destroyed the Athenian fleet at Aegospotami. His personal success was celebrated through several monuments and dedications; at Samos he was worshipped as a god, perhaps the first living Greek to receive divine worship. See ruler‐cult, greek.

Lysander established ‘decarchies’ of his oligarchical partisans in many cities. Obtaining Athens' surrender through blockade (spring 404), he secured the installation of the Thirty Tyrants, but his policy was overturned by King Pausanias' 2 restoration of democracy in 403. At some date before 396 the ephors withdrew support from the faltering decarchies. His continuing influence, however, led Sparta to support Cyrus' attempt on the Persian throne (401) and to make his protégé Agesilaus king.

Subjects: Classical Studies.


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