Phoebidas was a Sparta
Sparta or Lacedaemon, was a prominent city-state in ancient Greece, situated on the banks of the River Eurotas in Laconia, in south-eastern Peloponnese. It emerged as a political entity around the 10th century BC, when the invading Dorians subjugated the local, non-Dorian population. From c...

n general who, in 382 BC
382 BC
Year 382 BC was a year of the pre-Julian Roman calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Tribunate of Crassus, Mugillanus, Cornelius, Fidenas, Camerinus and Mamercinus...

, seized the Theban acropolis, thus giving Sparta control over Thebes. To punish his unauthorized action, Phoebidas was relieved of command. Nevertheless, the Spartans continued to hold Thebes. The Spartan king Agesilaus
Agesilaus II
Agesilaus II, or Agesilaos II was a king of Sparta, of the Eurypontid dynasty, ruling from approximately 400 BC to 360 BC, during most of which time he was, in Plutarch's words, "as good as thought commander and king of all Greece," and was for the whole of it greatly identified with his...

 argued against punishing Phoebidas, on the grounds that his actions had benefitted Sparta, arguing out that was the only standard by which he should be judged.

Several years later, Phoebidas's actions appear to have been the model for a similar action by another general, Sphodrias
Sphodrias was a Spartan general during the period of Greek history known as the Spartan hegemony. In 379 BC, he was in command of a garrison in the Spartan-occupied city of Thespiae in Boeotia. Aiming to increase Spartan power in the region, he attempted to march by night to seize the Piraeus,...

, who attempted to seize Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

, the port of Athens.

In 378 BC, Phoebidas was killed by Theban horsemen while serving as the harmost
Harmost in ancient Greece is a Spartan term that means military governor. The Spartan general Lysander instituted several harmosts during the period of Spartan hegemony after the end of the Peloponnesian War in 404 BC...

 of Thespiae
Thespiae was an ancient Greek city in Boeotia. It stood on level ground commanded by the low range of hills which runs eastward from the foot of Mount Helicon to Thebes, near modern Thespies.-History:...

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