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The PELOPONNESIAN LEAGUE was an alliance in the Peloponnesus from the 6th to the 4th centuries BC. It is known mainly for being one of the two rivals in the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC)

CONTENTS

* 1 Early history * 2 League organization * 3 Later history of the League * 4 External links

EARLY HISTORY

By the end of the 7th century BC Sparta
Sparta
had become the most powerful city-state in the Peloponnese and was the political and military hegemon over Argos
Argos
, the next most powerful city-state. Sparta acquired two powerful allies, Corinth and Elis (also city-states), by ridding Corinth of tyranny , and helping Elis secure control of the Olympic Games . Sparta
Sparta
continued to aggressively use a combination of foreign policy and military intervention to gain other allies. Sparta defeated Tegea in a frontier war and offered them a permanent defensive alliance; this was the turning point for Spartan foreign policy. Many other states in the central and provincial northern Peloponnese joined the league, which eventually included all Peloponnesian states except Argos
Argos
and Achaea .

LEAGUE ORGANIZATION

The league was organized with Sparta
Sparta
as the hegemon, and was controlled by the council of allies which was composed of two bodies: the assembly of Spartiates and the Congress of Allies. Each allied state had one vote in the Congress, regardless of that state's size or geopolitical power. No tribute was paid except in times of war, when one third of the military of a state could be requested. Only Sparta could call a Congress of the League. All alliances were made with Sparta
Sparta
only, so if they so wished, member states had to form separate alliances with each other. And although each state had one vote, League resolutions were not binding on Sparta. Thus, the Peloponnesian League was not an "alliance" in the strictest sense of the word (nor was it wholly Peloponnesian for the entirety of its existence).

The league provided protection and security to its members. It was a conservative alliance which supported Oligarchies and opposed tyrannies and democracies.

LATER HISTORY OF THE LEAGUE

After the Persian Wars the League was expanded into the Hellenic League and included Athens
Athens
and other states. The Hellenic League was led by Pausanias and, after he was recalled, by Cimon
Cimon
of Athens.