We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
 >   > 
The Spartans Audiobook

The Spartans

Regular Price:$17.47
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

The Spartans of ancient Greece were a powerful and unique people, radically different from any civilization before or since. A society of warrior-heroes, they were living exemplars of self-sacrifice, community endeavor, and achievement against all odds, qualities that today signify the ultimate in heroism. Scholars even believe that Thomas More had Sparta specifically in mind when he coined the term "Utopia".

Paul Cartledge, widely considered the world's leading expert on Sparta, engagingly examines the rise and fall of this singular society. In a narrative that resounds with the battle cries of the ancient Greeks, he takes a compelling look at the many illustrious Spartan figures from the worlds of history and legend, including Lycurgus, Lysander, King Leonidas, and Helen of Troy and Sparta.

©2002, 2003 Paul Cartledge; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Engaging...Cartledge cloaks his erudition with an ease and enthusiasm." (Booklist)
"A fine overview of the rise and fall of a singular culture, spiced with anecdotes, quotations, brisk summary, and real insight." (Seattle Times)
"Remarkable...Cartledge's crystalline prose, his vivacious storytelling and his lucid historical insights combine here to provide a first-rate history of the Spartans." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.5 (182 )
5 star
 (38)
4 star
 (51)
3 star
 (63)
2 star
 (21)
1 star
 (9)
Overall
3.8 (78 )
5 star
 (25)
4 star
 (25)
3 star
 (21)
2 star
 (4)
1 star
 (3)
Story
3.9 (76 )
5 star
 (27)
4 star
 (25)
3 star
 (17)
2 star
 (6)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    J. Clark Charlotte, NC USA 04-25-08
    J. Clark Charlotte, NC USA 04-25-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    175
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    4
    Overall
    "requires full attention"

    In school, we would have considered this a "tough read" because it's so historical. With that understanding, I would recommend this book for its detail and fact.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James Hamilton, ON, Canada 10-22-07
    James Hamilton, ON, Canada 10-22-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    20
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    15
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Not a place to go to learn about the Spartans"

    While this book is obviously meticulously researched and painstakingly compiled, it is lacking in audio format, for the simple reason that it is extremely difficult to follow. The narration is well-done, but the story is hard to follow, lacks flow, and seems to be much more of a "scholarly history" without the narrative touch that makes history come alive in other audio books that I have enjoyed. I can't recommend this one.

    20 of 23 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Euryleia Buena Park, CA United States 01-18-08
    Euryleia Buena Park, CA United States 01-18-08 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    251
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    312
    43
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    9
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not for idle listening"

    This was very good, with interesting subject matter and good narration, but it requires your full attention if you are going to be able to follow it. This is a history, not a historical novel or novelized history, and if your mind wanders while you are listening then you wind up being completely lost.

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gene 03-07-17
    Gene 03-07-17 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    20
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Strength in the history."

    I was not sure how I would like listening to a history book. Many facts and name and various clarifications. I think the key is that I was interested to begin with. This people are fascinating and this book gave me what I needed....the facts.
    I feel that whatever your vision of this culture is going in, you won't be disappointed as the author unfolds the real strength and tragedy of the people called SPARTANS.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Hayes 06-07-17

    physician and non-musician

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Well written and well read"

    Prof Cartledge is a well known scholar of Ancient Greece. I first noticed him as a relatively frequent guest on the BBC radio program "In Our Time" (which I listen to on podcast). He seemed like a very knowledgeable person who also had the ability to sum up complex situations and relationships between Greek poleis (plural form of polis or "city-state") in a way that was entertaining and memorable without talking down to his audience.

    These characteristics are on display here min "The Spartans." Cartledge gives us a chronological overview of Sparta as well a sharply drawn portrait of this very unusual society. It is just the right length to be a fully developed work, but not so involved that it feels like wading through minutia.

    Narrator John Lee has a busy career in audio books, and seems to be a reliable reader for works dealing with the classical world. His pronunciation is spot-on almost all of the time and he varies his pacing and rhythm in a way that shows he is understanding the material and attempting to communicate the meaning of the sentences the author has written.

    Overall a fantastic experience, one which I will definitely return to after a suitable period of time, to enjoy once again.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JOSEPH 08-14-16
    JOSEPH 08-14-16 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    23
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    94
    40
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A good history but not too entertaining."

    I guess whenever you hear of the Spartans you just assume it's going to be about their battles. This book is an encompassing look about their history and not just their battles won.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Big Guy woodstock, GA, United States 10-23-07
    Big Guy woodstock, GA, United States 10-23-07 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    63
    11
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Who says history can not be boring"

    `And it drones on and on. Flat as a pancake.

    8 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason Bryce 08-24-16
    Jason Bryce 08-24-16 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Barely talks about Spartan lore"

    I purchased this book hoping to learn about Spartan culture and customs. Instead the book mainly talks about Spartan government and their interaction with other governments. I was extremely disappointed.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.