how did the battle of thermopylae affect greece?


After the Persian invasion was repulsed, a stone lion was erected at Thermopylae to commemorate Leonidas. It would not be until the Ottoman Turks that Greece would again be dominated from the East. The primary source for the Greco-Persian Wars is the Greek historian Herodotus. Herodotus claimed that there were, in total, 2.6 million military personnel, accompanied by an equivalent number of support personnel. The Battle of Thermopylae, 480 BC, was a battle in the second Persian invasion of Greece. 7. No real consensus exists; even the most recent estimates by academics vary between 120,000 and 300,000. Although coming from a mountainous country, the Persians were not prepared for the real nature of the country they had invaded. At what age was a Spartan boy taken from his mother to start training? [106] According to Diodorus, a Persian called Tyrrhastiadas, a Cymaean by birth, warned the Greeks. Wary of being trapped in 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. [133] However, within the context of the Persian invasion, Thermopylae was undoubtedly a defeat for the Greeks. Demaratus called them "the bravest men in Greece" and warned the Great King they intended to dispute the pass. [54], Finally, in mid-August, the Persian army was sighted across the Malian Gulf approaching Thermopylae. 50. [93][94] Details of the tactics are scant; Diodorus says, "the men stood shoulder to shoulder", and the Greeks were "superior in valour and in the great size of their shields. Seeking the counsel of Demaratus, an exiled Spartan king in his retinue, Xerxes was told the Spartans were preparing for battle, and it was their custom to adorn their hair when they were about to risk their lives. Leonidas answered: "If you had any knowledge of the noble things of life, you would refrain from coveting others' possessions; but for me to die for Greece is better than to be the sole ruler over the people of my race. [74], From a strategic point of view, by defending Thermopylae, the Greeks were making the best possible use of their forces. 300. gave Athens ebough time to build ships and abandon city What was built … [17] Grundy also explored Plataea and wrote a treatise on that battle. Along the path itself was a series of three constrictions, or "gates" (pylai), and at the centre gate a wall that had been erected by the Phocians, in the previous century, to aid in their defence against Thessalian invasions. [26] Darius also saw the opportunity to expand his empire into the fractious world of Ancient Greece. Under the statue, a sign reads: "In memory of the seven hundred Thespians.". Translation by American historian, Professor J. Rufus Fears in his Ancient Greeks lectures for the. [12][13] The Persian army arrived at the pass in late August or early September. [14] 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. [61][92] The Persians soon launched a frontal assault, in waves of around 10,000 men, on the Greek position. That night a tremendous storm destroyed the Persian squadron while the Greeks were safely in port. [105] The Thespians, resolved as they were not to submit to Xerxes, faced the destruction of their city if the Persians took Boeotia. [142], While this paradigm of "free men" outfighting "slaves" can be seen as a rather sweeping over-generalization (there are many counter-examples), it is nevertheless true that many commentators have used Thermopylae to illustrate this point. The Persians overran Boeotia and then captured the evacuated city of 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 BC. [6], According to Herodotus and Diodorus, the king, having taken the measure of the enemy, threw his best troops into a second assault the same day, the Immortals, an elite corps of 10,000 men. A well-known epigram, usually attributed to Simonides, was engraved as an epitaph on a commemorative stone placed on top of the burial mound of the Spartans at Thermopylae. The open wing symbolizes the victory, the glory, the soul, the spirit and the freedom. Knowing that the end was near, the Greeks marched into the open field and met the Persians head-on. Thermopylae was in effect the ancient world’s Alamo. [59] When Leonidas refused these terms, the ambassador carried a written message by Xerxes, asking him to "Hand over your arms". [171] Here, on Alexander the Great's campaign against Persia in 330 BC to exact revenge for the Persian invasion of Greece, he faced the same situation, encountering a last stand of the Persian forces (under Ariobarzanes) at a narrow pass near Persepolis who held the invaders for a month, until their fall as the enemy found a path to their rear. [64] The poet Simonides, who was a near-contemporary, talks of four million; Ctesias gave 800,000 as the total number of the army that was assembled by Xerxes.[6]. [128] He left a hand-picked force, under Mardonius, to complete the conquest the following year. The Spartans assembled at full strength and defeated the Persians decisively at the Battle of Plataea, ending the Greco-Persian War and with it the expansion of the Persian Empire into Europe. Sparta. [52] Leonidas chose to camp at, and defend, the "middle gate", the narrowest part of the pass of Thermopylae, where the Phocians had built a defensive wall some time before. in, Plutarch, Apophthegmata Laconica, section "Leonidas, son of Anaxandridas", saying 11. Most of them were killed. The outstretched chest symbolizes the struggle, the gallantry, the strength, the bravery and the courage. W. Heckel, "Alexander at the Persian Gates", Second Persian invasion of Greece § Size of the Persian forces, The Persian Empire: A Corpus of Sources of the Achaemenid Period, "Battle of Thermopylae | Date, Location, and Facts", http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0160%3Abook%3D10%3Achapter%3D21, "Diodorus Siculus, Library, Book XI, Chapter 8, section 5", "Greco-Persian Wars: Battle of Thermopylae", "Sparse Spartan Verse: Filling Gaps in the Thermopylae Epigram", "Herodotus, The Histories, Book 7, chapter 226, section 1", "Greece Issues Commemorative Coins for 2500th Anniversary of Battle of Thermopylae", "Herodotus: The Seventh, Eighth & Ninth Books with Introduction and Commentary: Commentary on Herodotus, Histories, book 7, chapter 228", Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae, 300 Spartans at the Battle of Thermopylae: Herodotus' Real History, "Herodotus' twenty-second logos: Thermopylae", 2,500 year celebration of the Persian Empire, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Battle_of_Thermopylae&oldid=999723828, Articles with dead external links from June 2020, Articles with permanently dead external links, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles containing Ancient Greek (to 1453)-language text, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2016, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. It was suggested by Themistocles that Xerxes’ army would have to traverse the narrow pass of Thermopylae in order to reach southern Greece. Screenplay by Wendell Mayes, based on the novel "Incident at Muc Wa" by Daniel Ford. (Godley translation) or otherwise, "Ye Gods, Mardonius, what men have you brought us to fight against? It started under Darius the Great, who is mentioned in the Old Testament books of Ezra and Nehemiah. [100] Ephialtes was motivated by the desire for a reward. [24], 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". [111], It is sometimes stated that Thermopylae was a Pyrrhic victory for the Persians[3][4] (i.e., one in which the victor is as damaged by the battle as the defeated party). Battle. The task force then moved on Eretria, which it besieged and destroyed. Xerxes found the scout's reports of the size of the Greek force, and that the Spartans were indulging in callisthenics and combing their long hair, laughable. Herodotus reports that the Phocians had improved the defences of the pass by channelling the stream from the hot springs to create a marsh, and it was a causeway across this marsh which was only wide enough for a single chariot to traverse. "—as in answer to Xerxes' demand that the Greeks give up their weapons). While many of the Greeks took him up on his offer and fled, around two thousand soldiers stayed behind to fight and die. It led the Persians behind the Greek lines. [82], The terrain of the battlefield was nothing that Xerxes and his forces were accustomed to. [111] If the position had been held for even a little longer, the Persians might have had to retreat for lack of food and water. [45] Furthermore, to prevent the Persians from bypassing Thermopylae by sea, the Athenian and allied navies could block the straits of Artemisium. When at a later date, an army of Gauls led by Brennus attempted to force the pass, the shallowness of the water gave the Greek fleet great difficulty getting close enough to the fighting to bombard the Gauls with ship-borne missile weapons. The major cause of the battle can be traced back to the Ionian revolt. Moreover, in the pass, the phalanx would have been very difficult to assault for the more lightly armed Persian infantry. How did the battle of Thermopylae help Athens even though the Greeks lost? [110] The likelihood is that these were the Theban "loyalists", who unlike the majority of their fellow citizens, objected to Persian domination. After the battle, Spartan culture became an inspiration and object of emulation, a phenomenon known as Laconophilia. The simultaneous naval Battle of Artemisium had been a tactical stalemate, and the Greek navy was able to retreat in good order to the Saronic Gulf, where they helped to ferry the remaining Athenian citizens to the island of Salamis. The battle is also discussed in many articles and books on the theory and practice of warfare. [56] Some Peloponnesians suggested withdrawal to the Isthmus of Corinth and blocking the passage to Peloponnesus. [75][76] However, this is only one approach, and many other combinations are plausible. The Battle of Thermopylae is believed to have been fought in August 480 BC, during the Persian Wars (499 BC-449 BC). [77] The major weak point for the Greeks was the mountain track which led across the highland parallel to Thermopylae, that could allow their position to be outflanked. [citation needed]. The headless male figure symbolizes the anonymous sacrifice of the 700 Thespians to their country. It is also an example of Laconian brevity, which allows for varying interpretations of the meaning of the poem. [91] [105], Leonidas' actions have been the subject of much discussion. Upon hearing this, Tigranes, a Persian general, said: "Good heavens, Mardonius, what kind of men are these that you have pitted against us? While the Battle of Thermopylae was technically a defeat for the Greeks, it was also a victory in the long run because it marked the beginning of several important Greek victories against the Persians and boosted the morale of all the Greek city-states. [29][30] This meant that Sparta was also effectively at war with Persia. "[99] However, the Persians had no more success on the second day than on the first. The Greeks this time sallied forth from the wall to meet the Persians in the wider part of the pass, in an attempt to slaughter as many Persians as they could. The Battle of Thermopylae, 480 BC, was a battle in the second Persian invasion of Greece. The remaining soldiers fought to the death. Greek epitaphs often appealed to the passing reader (always called 'stranger') for sympathy, but the epitaph for the dead Spartans at Thermopylae took this convention much further than usual, asking the reader to make a personal journey to Sparta to break the news that the Spartan expeditionary force had been wiped out. [66][b] These estimates usually come from studying the logistical capabilities of the Persians in that era, the sustainability of their respective bases of operations, and the overall manpower constraints affecting them. Today, it is considered to have been much smaller. [111], Following Thermopylae, the Persian army proceeded to sack and burn Plataea and Thespiae, the Boeotian cities that had not submitted, before it marched on the now evacuated city of Athens and accomplished the Achaemenid destruction of Athens. usurper and had spent considerable time extinguishing revolts against his rule. [34] Xerxes crushed the Egyptian revolt and very quickly restarted the preparations for the invasion of Greece. The Battle of Thermopylae, 480 BC, was a battle in the second Persian invasion of Greece.It was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by Sparta, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes I.It took place at the pass of Thermopylae. The Persians met the Greeks in battle over a period of three days in August 480. What is another name for a Greek city-state? The battles of Marathon and Thermopylae are two of the most famous engagements of antiquity fought in Greece. [48] It was also the time of the Olympic Games, and therefore the Olympic truce, and thus it would have been doubly sacrilegious for the whole Spartan army to march to war. [37] 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. [110], However, this alone does not explain the fact that they remained; the remainder of Thespiae was successfully evacuated before the Persians arrived there. The fame of Thermopylae is thus principally derived not from its effect on the outcome of the war but for the inspirational example it set. [105] He feared they were Spartans but was informed by Ephialtes that they were not. This place was Thermopylae, a pass where it was only 60 feet wide. Stranger, bear this message to the Spartans. "[114], Tearing down part of the wall, Xerxes ordered the hill surrounded, and the Persians rained down arrows until every last Greek was dead. [123] Meanwhile, the Greeks (for the most part Peloponnesians) preparing to defend the Isthmus of Corinth, demolished the single road that led through it and built a wall across it. [55] With the Persian army's arrival at Thermopylae the Greeks held a council of war. As discussed in Immediate Consequences , the rear-guard and battle in general were very successful in temporarily delaying the progress of the invasion across Central Greece. An alliance of Greek city-states of about 6,700 men fought the invading Persian Empire, which had an army of about 242,000 men, at the pass of Thermopylae in central Greece. [61] The Greeks fought in front of the Phocian wall, at the narrowest part of the pass, which enabled them to use as few soldiers as possible. [6], Later that day, however, as the Persian king was pondering what to do next, he received a windfall; a Trachinian named Ephialtes informed him of the mountain path around Thermopylae and offered to guide the Persian army. It is also the hill on which the last of them died. In universal terms, a small, free people had willingly outfought huge numbers of imperial subjects who advanced under the lash. An alliance of Greek city-states of about 6,700 men fought the invading Persian Empire, which had an army of about 242,000 men, at the pass of Thermopylae in central Greece. One of which is a statue of King Leonidas I, portrayed as bearing a spear, and shield. [33], 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. A Greek betrayed the Spartans and showed the Persians a way behind the Spartans. ", Similarities between the Battle of Thermopylae and the Battle of Persian Gate have been recognized by both ancient and modern authors,[169] which describe it as a kind of reversal of the Battle of Thermopylae,[170] calling it "the Persian Thermopylae". [103] The path led from east of the Persian camp along the ridge of Mt. Although no obstacle to individuals, such terrain would not be passable by an army and its baggage train. [77], Militarily, although the battle was actually not decisive in the context of the Persian invasion, Thermopylae is of some significance on the basis of the first two days of fighting. [83], Today, the pass is not near the sea, but is several kilometres inland because of sedimentation in the Malian Gulf. The Persian invasion was a delayed response to the def… Whatever the real numbers were, however, it is clear that Xerxes was anxious to ensure a successful expedition by mustering an overwhelming numerical superiority by land and by sea. The Battle of Thermopylae has remained a cultural icon of western civilization ever since it was fought. [43] A force of 10,000 hoplites was dispatched to the Vale of Tempe, through which they believed the Persian army would have to pass. Luring the Persian navy into the Straits of Salamis, the Greek fleet was able to destroy much of the Persian fleet in the Battle of Salamis, which essentially ended the threat to the Peloponnese. 300. 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