The Landmark Thucydides - Final Exam

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The Landmark Thucydides - Final Exam - Quiz

A 25-question final exam on The History of the Peloponnesian War


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 

    What two Greek cities were the primary antogonists in the Peloponnesian War fought between the Delian League and the Peloponnesian League?

    • A.

      Corinth and Corcyra

    • B.

      Thebes and Argos

    • C.

      Athens and Sparta

    • D.

      Hellas and Sicily

    Correct Answer
    C. Athens and Sparta
    Explanation
    The correct answer is Athens and Sparta. The Peloponnesian War was fought between these two Greek cities. Athens was the leader of the Delian League, an alliance of city-states in the Aegean Sea, while Sparta led the Peloponnesian League, which consisted mainly of cities in the Peloponnese region. The war lasted for 27 years, from 431 to 404 BC, and resulted in the eventual defeat of Athens by Sparta. This conflict marked a significant shift in power and influence in ancient Greece.

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  • 2. 

    Where were Athens and Sparta located, respectively?

    • A.

      Hellas and Crete

    • B.

      Attica and the Peloponnesus

    • C.

      Boethia and Thessaly

    • D.

      Macedonia and the Hellespont

    Correct Answer
    B. Attica and the Peloponnesus
    Explanation
    Athens and Sparta were located in Attica and the Peloponnesus respectively. Attica is a region in Greece that encompasses the city of Athens, which was the capital of ancient Greece. The Peloponnesus is a peninsula located in southern Greece, where the city-state of Sparta was situated. These two regions were significant in ancient Greek history and were known for their distinct political systems and military prowess.

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  • 3. 

    How did Thucydides refer to the 50 years leading up to the war?

    • A.

      The Pentaliad

    • B.

      The Pentanomicon

    • C.

      The Pentateuch

    • D.

      The Pentacontaetia

    Correct Answer
    D. The Pentacontaetia
    Explanation
    Thucydides referred to the 50 years leading up to the war as "The Pentacontaetia".

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  • 4. 

    How were the initial alliances between the two warring sides arranged?

    • A.

      Corcyra and Athens vs Corinth and Sparta

    • B.

      Corcyra and Sparta vs Corinth and Athens

    • C.

      Athens and Sparta vs Corcyra and Corinth

    • D.

      Athens and Thebes vs Persia and Sparta

    Correct Answer
    A. Corcyra and Athens vs Corinth and Sparta
    Explanation
    The initial alliances between the two warring sides were arranged as Corcyra and Athens joining forces against Corinth and Sparta.

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  • 5. 

    Who were the two leading Athenian statesmen at the time the war began?

    • A.

      Orestes and Alcibiades

    • B.

      Pericles and Themistocles

    • C.

      Nicias and Demosthenes

    • D.

      Myronides and Aristophenes

    Correct Answer
    B. Pericles and Themistocles
    Explanation
    Pericles and Themistocles were the two leading Athenian statesmen at the time the war began. Pericles was a prominent politician and general who played a crucial role in the development of Athenian democracy and the construction of the Parthenon. Themistocles, on the other hand, was a skilled military commander who was instrumental in the victory against the Persians at the Battle of Salamis. Both leaders had significant influence and were key figures in shaping Athens' political and military strategies during the war.

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  • 6. 

    What was the single demand in the Spartan ultimatum preceded the war?

    • A.

      To end the siege of Potidaea.

    • B.

      To tear down the Long Walls.

    • C.

      To restore Hellenic independence.

    • D.

      To rescind the Megarian Decree.

    Correct Answer
    C. To restore Hellenic independence.
    Explanation
    The correct answer is "To restore Hellenic independence." This demand refers to the ultimatum issued by Sparta before the war, where they called for the restoration of independence for all the Greek city-states. This demand reflects Sparta's desire to dismantle the Athenian empire and regain control over the Greek world. By restoring Hellenic independence, Sparta aimed to establish its hegemony and diminish the power of Athens.

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  • 7. 

    According to Pericles, what was the principle military advantage of Athens over the Peloponnesian League?

    • A.

      The advantage of sea power over land power.

    • B.

      The agricultural basis of the Peloponnesians' economies.

    • C.

      The inexperience of the Spartan navy.

    • D.

      The Peloponnesians' lack of money.

    Correct Answer
    D. The Peloponnesians' lack of money.
    Explanation
    Pericles believed that the principle military advantage of Athens over the Peloponnesian League was the Peloponnesians' lack of money. This implies that Athens, with its strong economy and financial resources, had the ability to fund and sustain a larger and more powerful military force compared to the Peloponnesians. This financial advantage allowed Athens to maintain a strong navy, which was crucial in their domination of the sea and their ability to project power and control trade routes.

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  • 8. 

    What was the Athenians' greatest strategic weakness?

    • A.

      Democratic government

    • B.

      Overreliance on naval power

    • C.

      Disloyal allies

    • D.

      Geographical location

    Correct Answer
    C. Disloyal allies
    Explanation
    The Athenians' greatest strategic weakness was their disloyal allies. This means that the allies they relied on for support and assistance were not always trustworthy or committed to the Athenian cause. This weakness would have made it difficult for the Athenians to maintain a strong and united front in their military campaigns and could have compromised their overall strategic position.

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  • 9. 

    What was the average annual "tribute" paid to Athens by its allies?

    • A.

      525 pounds of gold.

    • B.

      15,600 kilograms of silver.

    • C.

      50 triremes and 500 hoplites.

    • D.

      4 tons of feta cheese.

    Correct Answer
    B. 15,600 kilograms of silver.
    Explanation
    The average annual "tribute" paid to Athens by its allies was 15,600 kilograms of silver. This is the correct answer because it is the only option that represents a form of currency or valuable resource that could be used for payment. The other options, such as pounds of gold, triremes, hoplites, and feta cheese, do not fit the context of a tribute payment and are not commonly used as forms of currency.

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  • 10. 

    Why did the Spartans ravage the country around Athens instead of attacking the city in their invasions of Attica?

    • A.

      They were afraid to battle the Athenian infantry.

    • B.

      They were waiting for the Theban cavalry to arrive.

    • C.

      Their siegecraft was insufficient to defeat the Athenian walls.

    • D.

      The oracle at Delphi told them not to.

    Correct Answer
    C. Their siegecraft was insufficient to defeat the Athenian walls.
    Explanation
    The Spartans ravaged the country around Athens instead of attacking the city because their siegecraft was insufficient to defeat the Athenian walls. This suggests that the Spartans did not have the necessary equipment or tactics to successfully breach the fortified walls of Athens. As a result, they resorted to attacking the surrounding countryside in order to weaken the Athenians and disrupt their resources, rather than engaging in a direct assault on the city itself.

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  • 11. 

    What Greek city surrendered to Athens and saw all of its male inhabitants subsequently massacred?

    • A.

      Melos

    • B.

      Mytilene

    • C.

      Plataea

    • D.

      Potidaea

    Correct Answer
    A. Melos
    Explanation
    Melos is the correct answer because it is the Greek city that surrendered to Athens and suffered the massacre of all its male inhabitants. This event, known as the Melian massacre, took place during the Peloponnesian War in 416 BCE. The Athenians, seeking to assert their dominance, refused to negotiate with Melos and instead attacked and killed the men, while enslaving the women and children. This brutal act was a demonstration of Athenian power and a warning to other city-states that resisted their rule.

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  • 12. 

    What was the name of the bloodthirsty Athenian politician who beat the Spartans at Pylos but was later defeated at Amphipolis?

    • A.

      Pericles

    • B.

      Cleon

    • C.

      Nicias

    • D.

      Diodotus

    Correct Answer
    B. Cleon
    Explanation
    Cleon was the bloodthirsty Athenian politician who defeated the Spartans at Pylos but was later defeated at Amphipolis.

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  • 13. 

    Who was the brilliant Athenian general whose efforts to reinforce the Sicilian Expedition were in vain?

    • A.

      Demosthenes

    • B.

      Alcibiades

    • C.

      Diodotus

    • D.

      Themistocles

    Correct Answer
    A. Demosthenes
    Explanation
    Demosthenes was not the brilliant Athenian general whose efforts to reinforce the Sicilian Expedition were in vain. The correct answer is Alcibiades. Alcibiades was a prominent and influential Athenian general who played a significant role in the Sicilian Expedition during the Peloponnesian War. Despite his efforts, the expedition ultimately failed, leading to a major defeat for Athens. Demosthenes, Diodotus, and Themistocles were also notable figures in Athenian history, but they were not directly involved in the Sicilian Expedition.

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  • 14. 

    Who was the bold Spartan general whose aggressive strategy and tactics turned the war in the Spartans favor before his death at Amphipolis?

    • A.

      Brasidas

    • B.

      Pausanias

    • C.

      Leonidas

    • D.

      Nicias

    Correct Answer
    A. Brasidas
    Explanation
    Brasidas was the bold Spartan general whose aggressive strategy and tactics turned the war in the Spartans' favor before his death at Amphipolis. His boldness and strategic brilliance allowed him to achieve significant victories against the Athenians, ultimately shifting the balance of power in the war. His death at Amphipolis was a great loss for Sparta, but his contributions had already made a lasting impact on the outcome of the war.

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  • 15. 

    Who was the treacherous Athenian politician who at various points throughout the war served Athens, Sparta, and Persia.

    • A.

      Eurymedon

    • B.

      Alcibiades

    • C.

      Hemocrates

    • D.

      Sophocles

    Correct Answer
    B. Alcibiades
    Explanation
    Alcibiades was a treacherous Athenian politician who played a significant role in the Peloponnesian War. He switched allegiances multiple times throughout the war, serving Athens, Sparta, and Persia at different points. Alcibiades was known for his cunning and manipulation, using his political skills to gain personal advantage. His actions greatly impacted the outcome of the war and his shifting loyalties made him a controversial figure in ancient Greece.

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  • 16. 

    What was the most effective Spartan strategy throughout the war, exemplified by the success of Brasidas in forcing Athens to ask for an armistice?

    • A.

      Invading Attica.

    • B.

      Building ships.

    • C.

      Encouraging rebellion by Athenian allies.

    • D.

      Waging campaigns of attrition.

    Correct Answer
    C. Encouraging rebellion by Athenian allies.
    Explanation
    Encouraging rebellion by Athenian allies was the most effective Spartan strategy throughout the war, exemplified by the success of Brasidas in forcing Athens to ask for an armistice. By supporting and instigating rebellions among Athenian allies, Sparta was able to weaken Athens' control and undermine their power. This strategy not only caused internal conflict and division within Athens, but it also diverted their resources and attention away from the main war effort. Ultimately, this led to Athens being forced to seek an armistice, highlighting the effectiveness of this Spartan strategy.

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  • 17. 

    What was the fatal blunder by Athens that decisively turned the course of the war?

    • A.

      The massacre at Melos.

    • B.

      The sparing of Mytilene.

    • C.

      The abandonment of Plataea.

    • D.

      The expedition to Sicily.

    Correct Answer
    D. The expedition to Sicily.
    Explanation
    The fatal blunder by Athens that decisively turned the course of the war was the expedition to Sicily. This military campaign was a major strategic mistake as it diverted significant resources and manpower away from the ongoing war with Sparta. The expedition ended in a disastrous defeat for Athens, resulting in the loss of a large portion of their fleet and army. This weakened Athens significantly and ultimately led to their defeat in the Peloponnesian War.

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  • 18. 

    Who was the most outspoken opponent of the Sicilian Expedition?

    • A.

      Alcibiades

    • B.

      Nicias

    • C.

      Cleon

    • D.

      Demosthenes

    Correct Answer
    B. Nicias
    Explanation
    Nicias was the most outspoken opponent of the Sicilian Expedition. He believed that the expedition was too risky and would lead to unnecessary loss of life and resources. Nicias argued that Athens should focus on consolidating its power and maintaining peace rather than engaging in a costly military campaign. Despite his opposition, the expedition went ahead, leading to a disastrous outcome for Athens.

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  • 19. 

    Why were Hemocrates and Athenagoras confident that Syracuse would defeat an Athenian invasion?

    • A.

      Numbers

    • B.

      Technology

    • C.

      Logistics

    • D.

      Strategy

    Correct Answer
    C. Logistics
    Explanation
    Hemocrates and Athenagoras were confident that Syracuse would defeat an Athenian invasion because of their superior logistics. Logistics refers to the organization and management of resources, such as supplies, transportation, and communication, to support military operations. Syracuse had a well-developed logistical system in place, which allowed them to efficiently move and supply their troops. This gave them a significant advantage over the Athenians, who may have struggled with logistical challenges in their invasion. Therefore, Hemocrates and Athenagoras believed that Syracuse's strong logistical capabilities would ultimately lead to their victory.

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  • 20. 

    What strategy did the Athenians adopt to defeat Syracuse in the second year of the Sicilian invasion?

    • A.

      Penetration and pocket capture.

    • B.

      Buying off Syracuse's allies.

    • C.

      Blockade by land and sea.

    • D.

      Feigned withdrawal.

    Correct Answer
    C. Blockade by land and sea.
    Explanation
    The Athenians adopted the strategy of blockade by land and sea to defeat Syracuse in the second year of the Sicilian invasion. This involved surrounding the city both on land and sea, cutting off their supplies and isolating them from any potential allies or reinforcements. By implementing this blockade, the Athenians were able to weaken Syracuse and ultimately gain the upper hand in the conflict.

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  • 21. 

    Why were the mixed results at the battle of Plemmyrium a major victory for the Syracusan-Peloponnesian alliance despite losing the naval battle to Athens?

    • A.

      The Athenians were forced to withdraw from the Great Harbor of Syracuse.

    • B.

      The allies could replace their lost ships more easily than the Athenians could replace their lost troops, stores, and equipment.

    • C.

      It was the first time the Athenians had been defeated in battle since they arrived in Sicily.

    • D.

      The Athenians boarded their ships and returned to Athens.

    Correct Answer
    B. The allies could replace their lost ships more easily than the Athenians could replace their lost troops, stores, and equipment.
    Explanation
    The mixed results at the battle of Plemmyrium were a major victory for the Syracusan-Peloponnesian alliance despite losing the naval battle to Athens because the allies had the advantage of being able to replace their lost ships more easily than the Athenians could replace their lost troops, stores, and equipment. This meant that the alliance could quickly recover and continue their campaign, while the Athenians would face more difficulties in replenishing their resources and sustaining their military presence.

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  • 22. 

    Why was the destruction of the Athenian expeditionary force such a crushing blow to Athens?

    • A.

      They lost more ships than they could afford to replace.

    • B.

      They lost more hoplites than they could afford to replace.

    • C.

      They lost more veteran sailors than it was possible to replace.

    • D.

      The Peloponnesian League had been on the verge of surrender.

    Correct Answer
    C. They lost more veteran sailors than it was possible to replace.
    Explanation
    The destruction of the Athenian expeditionary force was such a crushing blow to Athens because they lost more veteran sailors than it was possible to replace. Veteran sailors are highly skilled and experienced, and their loss would have a significant impact on the Athenian navy's effectiveness. Without enough experienced sailors, Athens would struggle to maintain its naval power and defend its empire. This loss would weaken Athens' military capabilities and leave them vulnerable to attacks from their enemies, ultimately undermining their position and influence in the region.

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  • 23. 

    What was the peculiar Athenian civic custom that contributed greatly to the failure of the Sicilian Expedition?

    • A.

      Taking the auguries before making strategic decisions.

    • B.

      No Athenian would fight during the month of September.

    • C.

      Placing a strict time limit on military campaigns.

    • D.

      Putting unsuccessful generals on trial.

    Correct Answer
    D. Putting unsuccessful generals on trial.
    Explanation
    Putting unsuccessful generals on trial was a peculiar Athenian civic custom that contributed greatly to the failure of the Sicilian Expedition. This practice created a culture of fear among the Athenian commanders, as they knew that if they were unsuccessful in their military campaigns, they would be held accountable and potentially face severe consequences. This fear of being put on trial and the resulting pressure to achieve victory at all costs may have led to hasty and ill-advised decisions during the Sicilian Expedition, ultimately contributing to its failure.

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  • 24. 

    The involvement of what foreign power sealed the fall of Athens.

    • A.

      Persia

    • B.

      Egypt

    • C.

      Crete

    • D.

      Rome

    Correct Answer
    A. Persia
    Explanation
    The involvement of Persia sealed the fall of Athens. Persia, also known as the Achaemenid Empire, was a powerful foreign power that played a significant role in the decline of Athens. The Persian Empire supported Athens' rival, Sparta, during the Peloponnesian War, which weakened Athens militarily and economically. Additionally, Persia provided financial and military aid to Sparta, further tipping the balance in favor of Athens' enemies. This support from Persia ultimately led to Athens' defeat and the end of its dominance in the ancient world.

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