40 A force of 10,000 hoplites was dispatched to the vale of Tempe, through which they believed the persian army would have to pass. However, once there, being warned by Alexander i of Macedon that essays the vale could be bypassed through Sarantoporo pass and that Xerxes' army was overwhelming, the Greeks retreated. 41 Shortly afterwards, they received the news that Xerxes had crossed the hellespont. 40 Themistocles, therefore, suggested a second strategy to the Greeks: the route to southern Greece (boeotia, attica, and the peloponnesus) would require xerxes' army to travel through the very narrow pass of Thermopylae, which could easily be blocked by the Greek hoplites, despite the overwhelming. 42 Furthermore, to prevent the persians from bypassing Thermopylae by sea, the Athenian and allied navies could block the straits of Artemisium. Congress adopted this dual-pronged strategy. 42 However, the peloponnesian cities made fall-back plans to defend the Isthmus of Corinth, should it come to that, whilst the women and children of Athens had been evacuated en masse to the peloponnesian city of Troezen. 43 Prelude edit The persian army seems to have made slow progress through Thrace and Macedon. News of the imminent Persian approach eventually reached Greece in August thanks to a greek spy.
35 The Athenians had also been preparing for war with the persians since the mid-480s bc, and in 482 bc the decision was taken, under the guidance of the Athenian politician Themistocles, to build a massive fleet of triremes that would be essential for the. 36 However, the Athenians lacked the manpower to fight on both land and sea; therefore, combating the persians would require an alliance of Greek city-states. In 481 bc, xerxes sent ambassadors around Greece requesting "earth interests and water" but very deliberately omitting Athens and Sparta. 37 Support thus began to coalesce around these two leading states. A congress of city-states met at Corinth in late autumn of 481 bc, 38 and a confederate alliance of Greek city-states was formed. It had the power to send envoys to request assistance and dispatch troops from the member states to defensive points, after joint consultation. This was remarkable for the disjointed Greek world, especially since many of the city-states in attendance were still technically at war with each other. 39 The "congress" met again in the spring of 480. A thessalian delegation suggested that the Greeks could muster in the narrow Vale of Tempe, on the borders of Thessaly, and thereby block xerxes' advance.
31 Xerxes crushed the Egyptian revolt and very quickly restarted the preparations for the invasion of Greece. 32 Since this was to be a full-scale invasion, it required long-term planning, stockpiling, and conscription. 32 Xerxes decided that the hellespont would be bridged to allow his army to cross to europe, and that a canal should be dug across the isthmus of mount Athos (rounding which headland, a persian fleet had been destroyed in 492 BC). 33 These were both feats of exceptional ambition, which would have been beyond any other contemporary state. 33 by early 480 bc, the preparations were complete, and the army which Xerxes had mustered at Sardis marched towards Europe, crossing the hellespont on two pontoon bridges. 34 According to herodotus, xerxes' army was so large that, upon arriving at the banks of the Echeidorus river, his soldiers proceeded to drink it dry. In the face of such imposing numbers, many Greek cities capitulated to the persian demand for a tribute of earth and water.
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25 A preliminary expedition under Mardonius in 492 bc, to secure the land approaches to Greece, re-conquered Thrace and twenties forced Macedon to become a client kingdom of Persia's. 26 Darius sent emissaries to all the Greek city-states in 491 bc asking for a gift of " earth and water " as tokens of their submission to him. 27 having had a demonstration of his power the previous year, the majority of Greek cities duly obliged. In Athens, however, the ambassadors were put on trial and then executed by throwing them in a pit; in Sparta, they were simply thrown down a well. 27 28 This meant that Sparta was also effectively at war with Persia.
27 Darius thus put together an amphibious task force under Datis and Artaphernes in 490 bc, which attacked Naxos, before receiving the submission of the other Cycladic Islands. The task force then moved on Eretria, which it besieged and destroyed. 29 Finally, it moved to attack Athens, landing at the bay of Marathon, where it was met by a heavily outnumbered Athenian army. At the ensuing Battle of Marathon, the Athenians won a remarkable victory, which resulted in the withdrawal of the persian army to Asia. 30 Darius, therefore, began raising a huge new army with which he meant to completely subjugate Greece; however, in 486 bc, his Egyptian subjects revolted, indefinitely postponing any Greek expedition. 23 good Darius then died whilst preparing to march on Egypt, and the throne of Persia passed to his son Xerxes.
Grundy was the first modern historian to do a thorough topographical survey of the narrow pass at Thermopylae, and to the extent that modern accounts of the battle differ from Herodotus' they usually follow Grundy's. 14 For example, the military strategist Sir Basil Henry liddell Hart defers to Grundy. 15 Grundy also explored Plataea and wrote a treatise on that battle. 16 On the battle of Thermopylae itself, two principal sources, herodotus' and Simonides ' accounts, survive. 17 In fact, herodotus' account of the battle, in book vii of his Histories, is such an important source that paul Cartledge wrote: "we either write a history of Thermopylae with Herodotus, or not at all".
18 Also surviving is an epitome of the account of Ctesias, by the eighth-century byzantine Photias, though this is "almost worse than useless 19 missing key events in the battle such as the betrayal of Ephialtes, and the account of diodorus Siculus in his Universal. Diodorus' account seems to have been based on that of Ephorus and contains one significant deviation from Herodotus' account: a supposed night attack against the persian camp, of which modern scholars have tended to be sceptical. 20 21 Background edit main articles: Greco-persian Wars and Second Persian invasion of Greece a map of almost all the parts of the Greek world that partook in the persian Wars The Greek city-states of Athens and Eretria had encouraged the unsuccessful Ionian revolt against. The persian Empire was still relatively young and prone to revolts amongst its subject peoples. 22 23 Darius, moreover, was a usurper and had spent considerable time extinguishing revolts against his rule. 22 The ionian revolt threatened the integrity of his empire, and Darius thus vowed to punish those involved, especially the Athenians, "since he was sure that the ionians would not go unpunished for their rebellion". 24 Darius also saw the opportunity to expand his empire into the fractious world of Ancient Greece.
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Wary of being trapped in hippie Europe, xerxes withdrew with much of his army to Asia (losing most to starvation and disease leaving Mardonius to attempt to complete the conquest of Greece. However, the following year saw a greek army decisively defeat the persians at the battle of Plataea, thereby ending the persian invasion. Both ancient essay and modern writers have used the battle of Thermopylae as an example of the power of a patriotic army defending its native soil. The performance of the defenders is also used as an example of the advantages of training, equipment, and good use of terrain as force multipliers and has become a symbol of courage against overwhelming odds. Contents sources edit main article: Herodotus The primary source for the Greco-persian Wars is the Greek historian Herodotus. The sicilian historian diodorus Siculus, writing in the 1st century bc in his Bibliotheca historica, also provides an account of the Greco-persian wars, partially derived from the earlier Greek historian Ephorus. This account is fairly consistent with Herodotus'. 12 The Greco-persian wars are also described in less detail by a number of other ancient historians including Plutarch, Ctesias of Cnidus, and are referred to by other authors, as in Aeschylus in The persians. Archaeological evidence, such as the serpent Column (now in the hippodrome of Constantinople also supports some of Herodotus' specific claims.
in late august or early. The vastly outnumbered Greeks held off the persians for seven days (including three of battle) before the rear-guard was annihilated in one of history's most famous last stands. During two full days of battle, the small force led by leonidas blocked the only road by which the massive persian army could pass. After the second day, a local resident named. Ephialtes betrayed the Greeks by revealing a small path that led behind the Greek lines. Leonidas, aware that his force was being outflanked, dismissed the bulk of the Greek army and remained to guard their retreat with 300 Spartans and 700 Thespians, fighting to the death. (Others also reportedly remained, including 400 Thebans ; these Thebans mostly reportedly surrendered.) Themistocles was in command of the Greek navy at Artemisium when he received news that the persians had taken the pass at Thermopylae. Since the Greek strategy required both Thermopylae and Artemisium to be held, given their losses, it was decided to withdraw to salamis. The persians overran boeotia and then captured the evacuated Athens. The Greek fleet—seeking a decisive victory over the persian armada—attacked and defeated the invaders at the battle of Salamis in late 480.
Thermopylae the hot Gates. The persian invasion was a delayed response to the defeat of for the first Persian invasion of Greece, which had been ended by the. Athenian victory at the, battle of Marathon in 490. By 480 bc xerxes had amassed a huge army and navy, and set out to conquer all of Greece. The Athenian politician and general. Themistocles had proposed that the allied Greeks block the advance of the persian army at the pass of Thermopylae, and simultaneously block the persian navy at the Straits. A greek force of approximately 7,000 men marched north to block the pass in the middle of 480.
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For other battles using at Thermopylae, see. Battle of Thermopylae (disambiguation). "300 Spartans" redirects here. For the 1962 film, see. The, battle of Thermopylae ( /θərmɒpɪli/ thər-mop-i-lee ; Greek : Μάχη τν θερμοπυλν, machē tōn Thermopylōn ) was fought between an alliance. Greek city-states, led by, king leonidas of, sparta, and the, persian Empire. Xerxes i over the course of three days, during the second Persian invasion of Greece. It took place simultaneously with the naval battle at Artemisium, in August or September 480 bc, at the narrow coastal pass.