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Encyclopedia > Battle of Thermopylae
Battle of Thermopylae
Part of the Greco-Persian Wars

The site of the battle today.
Date 480 BC
Location Thermopylae, Greece
Result Persian victory.
Territorial
changes
Persians successfully conquer Attica.
Belligerents
Greek city-states Achaemenid Empire
Commanders
Leonidas  Xerxes I of Persia,
Mardonius,
Artapanus
Strength
300 Spartans
700 Thespians[1]
6,000 other Greek allies*
80,000 (Ctesias),
150,000 to 200,000
(Modern Consensus)
(See below)
Casualties and losses
300 Spartans
900 Helots
1,000 Phocians?
700 Thespians[1]
400 Thebans
Unknown others[2]
20,000 (Herodotus)[3]
* Out of the initial 7,000-strong Greek army, all but 2,300 were dismissed on the third day.[1]
Leonidas at Thermopylae, by Jacques Louis David, 1814. This is not a depiction of the place, the battle, or any moment in it, but is a juxtaposition of various incidents in the story told in picture form, which the viewer is to decipher. For example, Leonidas holding the center is seated on a throne. The chest to his right bears the inscription "Heracles", the mythical founder of his royal family. Further to his right is the blinded soldier invalided out for an eye infection being led back to the last stand. Behind him a figure is writing the epitaph of Simonides with the hilt of the sword. The wreaths for which the absent army competed at the games are shown. The temple of Apollo, source of the oracle, appears in the background. It is possible to find many more symbols in this large-size canvas at the Louvre.
Leonidas at Thermopylae, by Jacques Louis David, 1814. This is not a depiction of the place, the battle, or any moment in it, but is a juxtaposition of various incidents in the story told in picture form, which the viewer is to decipher. For example, Leonidas holding the center is seated on a throne. The chest to his right bears the inscription "Heracles", the mythical founder of his royal family. Further to his right is the blinded soldier invalided out for an eye infection being led back to the last stand. Behind him a figure is writing the epitaph of Simonides with the hilt of the sword. The wreaths for which the absent army competed at the games are shown. The temple of Apollo, source of the oracle, appears in the background. It is possible to find many more symbols in this large-size canvas at the Louvre.

In the Battle of Thermopylae (as detailed almost entirely by Herodotus), which occurred in 480 BC, an alliance of Greek city-states fought the invading Persian Empire at the pass of Thermopylae in central Greece. Vastly outnumbered, the Greeks held back the Persians for three days in one of history's most famous last stands. A small force led by King Leonidas I of Sparta blocked the only road through which the massive army of Xerxes I of Persia could pass. After three days of battle, a local resident named Ephialtes is believed to have betrayed the Greeks by revealing a mountain path that led behind the Greek lines. Dismissing the rest of the army, King Leonidas stayed behind with 300 Spartans, 700 Thespian volunteers, 400 Thebans that had been pressed into service, and 900 Helots. The Battle of Thermopylae is a battle fought at the strategic pass of Thermopylae in Greece; it may refer to: Battle of Thermopylae, the famous battle of the Persian Wars in 480 BC. Typically an unqualified reference to Battle of Thermopylae will be about it. ... For the clipper ship, see Thermopylae (clipper). ... Persian Wars redirects here. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1920 pixel, file size: 2. ... For the clipper ship, see Thermopylae (clipper). ... The term ancient Greece refers to the periods of Greek history in Classical Antiquity, lasting ca. ... Achaemenid Empire The Achaemenid Dynasty was a dynasty in the ancient Persian Empire, including Cyrus II the Great, Darius I and Xerxes I. At the height of their power, the Achaemenid rulers of Persia ruled over territories roughly emcompassing some parts of todays Iraq, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon... For other uses, see Leonidas (disambiguation). ... Temporary grave of an American machine-gunner during the Battle of Normandy. ... Xerxes I of Persia (sometimes known as Xerxes the Great, in old Persian, 𐎧𐏁𐎹𐎠𐎼𐏁𐎠[2]) was a king of Persia (reigned 486–465 BC) of the Achaemenid dynasty. ... Mardonius was a Persian commander during the Persian Wars with Greece in the 5th century BC. He was the son of Gobryas and the son-in-law of Darius I of Persia, whose daughter Artozostra he had married. ... Artapanus was a Persian General under Xerxes I. According to Ctesias Persica, Artapanus led the first wave of Persians against the Spartan force at the Battle of Thermopylae in 480 BC. Although he led a force of 10,000 men, they were routed by the 300 Spartan defenders. ... For modern day Sparta, see Sparti (municipality). ... Thespiae (Greek Θεσπιαι, Thespiai) was an ancient Greek city in Boeotia. ... Ctesias of Cnidus (in Caria) (Greek ), was a Greek physician and historian, who flourished in the 5th century BC. In early life he was physician to Artaxerxes Mnemon, whom he accompanied in 401 BC on his expedition against his brother Cyrus the Younger. ... Look up Spartan, spartan in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Helots were Peloponnesian Greeks who were enslaved under Spartan rule. ... Phocis (Greek, Modern: Φωκίδα/Fokída, Ancient/Katharevousa: Φωκίς/Phokis; named after the Greek mythological personage Phocus) is an ancient district of central Greece and a prefecture of modern Greece located in Sterea Hellas, one of the thirteen peripheries of Greece. ... Thespiae (Greek Θεσπιαι, Thespiai) was an ancient Greek city in Boeotia. ... Two important places in antiquity were called Thebes: Thebes, Greece – Thebes of the Seven Gates; one-time capital of Boeotia. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ... Persian Wars redirects here. ... The Ionian Revolts were triggered by the actions of Aristagoras, the tyrant of the Ionian city of Miletus at the end of the 6th century BC and the beginning of the 5th century BC. They constituted the first major conflict between Greece and Persia. ... Combatants Naxos Persia, Ionia, Naxian exiles Commanders Unknown Aristagoras, Megabates Strength 8,000 men and a large amount of ships Large number of men and 200 ships Casualties Light Heavy The Siege of Naxos (500 BC-499 BC) was a battle fought between the Persians under Megabates with aid from... Combatants Sardis Ionian Greeks, Athens, Eretria Commanders Unknown Aristagoras, Eualcides The Siege of Sardis (498 BC) was fought between the people of Sardis and an alliance of Greeks from Ionia, Athens, and Eretria. ... The Battle of Ephesus (498 BC) was a battle in the Ionian Revolt. ... The Battle of Lade was fought in 494 BC between the Ionians and the Persians. ... Combatants Naxos Persia Commanders Unknown Datis, Artaphernes Strength 8,000 men and a large amount of ships 20,000-60,000 men, Around 600 ships (Modern Estimates) Casualties Heavy Light The Siege of Naxos (490 BC) was fought between the people of Naxos and the Persians under the command of... Combatants Eretria Persia, Cyclades Commanders Aeschines Datis, Artaphernes Strength Unknown 20,000-60,000 men, Around 600 ships Casualties Heavy Heavy The Siege of Eretria was fought by the Eretrians who were invaded by the Persians under the command of Datis and Artaphernes. ... Belligerents Athens, Plataea Achaemenid Empire Commanders Miltiades the Younger, Callimachus â€ , Arimnestus Datis â€ ?, Artaphernes Strength 7,000 to 9,000 Athenians, 1,000 Plataeans 20,000 to 60,000 a Casualties and losses 192 Athenians, 11 Plataeans (Herodotus) 6,400, 7 ships captured (Herodotus) a These are modern consensus estimates. ... Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Eurybiades of Sparta Themistocles of Athens Adeimantus of Corinth Unknown Strength 333 ships 500 ships Casualties Half of Fleet (Herodotus) Unknown The naval Battle of Artemisium took place, according to tradition, on the same day as the Battle of Thermopylae on August 11, 480... For other uses, see Battle of Salamis (disambiguation). ... Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Pausanias Mardonius â€  Strength 110,000 (Herodotus) ~40,000 (Modern Consensus) 300,000 (Herodotus) 50,000-70,000 [1][2][3] (Modern Consensus) Casualties 10,000+ (Ephorus and Diodorus) 1,360 (Plutarch) 759 (Herodotus) 43,000 survived (Herodotus) The Battle of Plataea was the final... Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Leotychides Artaÿntes Strength About 40,000 60,000 men, 300 ships Casualties 40,000 The Battle of Mycale, Greek Μάχη Μυκάλης, Mache tes Mycales , was one of the two major battles that ended the Persian invasion of Greece, during the Greco-Persian Wars. ... Combatants Delian League Lybia Egypt Persian Empire Strength 250-40 ships After Greek successes in previous battles the Lybian king that was helping the Egyptians to revolt agianst Persia invited the Greeks that where campaigning in Cyprus with over 200 ships to help him in Egypt. ... Combatants Delian League, Greek Cypriot rebels Persian Empire Commanders Cimon † Artabazus Strength 200 ships 300 ships The Siege of Citium (Kition) was a joint naval and land battle fought between the Athenian-led Delian League and the Persian Empire. ... Combatants Delian League Persia Commanders Cimon † Anaxicrates Strength 300 triremes estimated 800 ships Casualties 40 ships lost over 250 ships lost The Battle of Salamis took place around 450 BC near Salamis in Cyprus. ... Self portrait Jacques-Louis David (August 30, 1748 - December 29, 1825), most usually known as David (pronounced Dah-veed rather than Day-vid), was a French painter. ... This article is about the museum. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ... A city-state is a region controlled exclusively by a city. ... Persia redirects here. ... For the clipper ship, see Thermopylae (clipper). ... ‹ The template below (Dabneeded) is being considered for deletion. ... For other uses, see Leonidas (disambiguation). ... For modern day Sparta, see Sparti (municipality). ... Xerxes I of Persia (sometimes known as Xerxes the Great, in old Persian, 𐎧𐏁𐎹𐎠𐎼𐏁𐎠[2]) was a king of Persia (reigned 486–465 BC) of the Achaemenid dynasty. ... For other uses, see Ephialtes (disambiguation). ... Helots were Peloponnesian Greeks who were enslaved under Spartan rule. ...


The Persians succeeded in taking the pass but sustained losses disproportionate to those of the Greeks. The fierce resistance of the Spartan-led army offered Athens the invaluable time to prepare for a decisive naval battle that would come to determine the outcome of the war.[4] The subsequent Greek victory at the Battle of Salamis left much of the Persian Empire's navy destroyed and Xerxes retreated to Asia, leaving a force in Greece under Mardonius, who was to meet the Greeks in battle one last time. The Spartans assembled at full strength and led a pan-Greek army that 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.[5] For modern day Sparta, see Sparti (municipality). ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... The French battleship Orient burns, 1 August 1798, during the Battle of the Nile A naval battle is a battle fought using ships or other waterborne vessels. ... For other uses, see Battle of Salamis (disambiguation). ... Persia redirects here. ... For other uses, see Asia (disambiguation). ... Mardonius was a Persian commander during the Persian Wars with Greece in the 5th century BC. He was the son of Gobryas and the son-in-law of Darius I of Persia, whose daughter Artozostra he had married. ... Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Pausanias Mardonius â€  Strength 110,000 (Herodotus) ~40,000 (Modern Consensus) 300,000 (Herodotus) 50,000-70,000 [1][2][3] (Modern Consensus) Casualties 10,000+ (Ephorus and Diodorus) 1,360 (Plutarch) 759 (Herodotus) 43,000 survived (Herodotus) The Battle of Plataea was the final... Combatants Greek city states, particularly Athens and Sparta Persian Empire Commanders Miltiades Themistocles Leonidas I Pausanias Kimon Pericles Mardonius Datis Artaphernes Xerxes I Megabyzus The Greco-Persian Wars or Persian Wars were a series of conflicts between the Greek world and the Persian Empire that started about 500 BC and... Persia redirects here. ... For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ...


The performance of the defenders at the battle of Thermopylae is often used as an example of the advantages of training, equipment, and good use of terrain as force multipliers,[6] and has become a symbol of courage against overwhelming odds.[6] A force multiplier is a military term referring to a factor that dramatically increases (hence multiplies) the combat effectiveness of a military force. ...

Contents

Greek preparations

The Battle of Thermopylae was the first main event in what is generally termed the Second Persian War. Its political origin is to be found in the events of the First Persian War,[7] when Xerxes' father, King Darius I of Persia, or Darius the Great, invaded Greece for the first time and was defeated by Athens at the Battle of Marathon in 490 BC. Darius I the Great (c. ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... Belligerents Athens, Plataea Achaemenid Empire Commanders Miltiades the Younger, Callimachus â€ , Arimnestus Datis â€ ?, Artaphernes Strength 7,000 to 9,000 Athenians, 1,000 Plataeans 20,000 to 60,000 a Casualties and losses 192 Athenians, 11 Plataeans (Herodotus) 6,400, 7 ships captured (Herodotus) a These are modern consensus estimates. ...


Earth and water

Just prior to that battle Darius had sent heralds around to the Greek states offering the opportunity to submit,[8] which would avoid war and make them eligible for blandishments from the king.[9] As was customary, this was signaled by asking for "earth and water", betokening their submission, which was duly kept by the assiduous bureaucrats of the Persian Empire. The Athenians responded at that time by throwing the emissaries into a pit, and the Spartans by throwing others into a well, with a suggestion to dig it out for themselves.[10] This article, image, template or category should belong in one or more categories. ...


Congress of Corinth

Consequently, when Xerxes sent the envoys around again[11] just prior to the Battle of Thermopylae, he omitted Athens and Sparta. Support gathered around these two leading states. A congress met at Corinth in late autumn of 481 BC,[12] and a confederate alliance of Greek city-states was formed. It had the power to send envoys asking for assistance and to dispatch troops from the member states to defensive points after joint consultation. Herodotus does not formulate an abstract name for the polity, such as "congress" or "alliance", but calls them simply "οἱ Ἕλληνες" (the Greeks) and "the Greeks who had sworn alliance" (Godley translation) or "the Greeks who had banded themselves together" (Rawlinson translation).[13] Sparta and Athens had a leading role in the congress[14] but interests of all the states played a part in determining defensive strategy. Little is known about the internal workings of the congress or the discussion during its proceedings. Only 70 of the approximately 700 Greek cities sent representatives. Corinth, or Korinth (Greek: Κόρινθος, Kórinthos; see also List of traditional Greek place names) is a Greek city-state, on the Isthmus of Corinth, the narrow stretch of land that joins the Peloponnesus to the mainland of Greece. ... This article covers the Greek civilization. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ...


Vale of Tempe

The congress first sent a force of 10,000 Greeks including hoplites and cavalry to the vale of Tempe, through which they believed the Persian army would have to pass. There is no mention of any Spartans. The force did include Lacedaemonians led by Euanetus, not of the Spartan royal family, and Athenians under Themistocles. Warned by Alexander I of Macedon that the vale could be bypassed through the Sarantoporo Pass and that the army of Xerxes was overwhelming, the Greeks decided not to try to hold there and vacated the vale.[15] The hoplite was a heavy infantryman that was the central focus of warfare in Ancient Greece. ... Vale of Tempe (modern Greek: Témbi) the ancient name of a narrow valley in North Thessaly, Greece, through which the Pineios River reaches the Aegean sea. ... Lacedaemon, or Lakedaimon, Grk. ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... Themistocles (Greek: ; c. ... Alexander I was ruler of Macedon from 495 BC to 450 BC. He was the son of Amyntas I of Macedon. ...


Carneia festival

Herodotus writes:[16]

The force with Leonidas was sent forward by the Spartans in advance of their main body, that the sight of them might encourage the allies to fight, and hinder them from going over to the Medes, as was likely they might have done had they seen that Sparta was backward. They intended presently, when they had celebrated the Carneian Festival, which was what now kept them at home, to leave a garrison in Sparta, and hasten in full force to join the army. The rest of the allies intended to act similarly; for it happened that the Olympic Festival fell exactly at this same period. None of them looked to see the contest at Thermopylae decided so speedily; wherefore they were content to send forward a mere advance guard. Such accordingly were the intentions of the allies. Median Empire, ca. ... The Carneian festival (Κάρνεια) was one of the most important religious festivals in ancient Sparta, held in honor of Apollo Carneios, who was worshipped in various parts of the Peloponnesus. ... Ruins of the training grounds at Olympia The Ancient Olympic Games, originally referred to as simply the Olympic Games (Greek: ; Olympiakoi Agones) were a series of athletic competitions held between various city-states of Ancient Greece. ...

During the Carneia, military activity was forbidden by Spartan law. At the Battle of Marathon, the Spartans had arrived too late because of this requirement. On this occasion, the ephors decided the urgency was sufficiently great to justify an advance expedition under one of its kings (Leonidas), which can be used to roughly determine the time of year. The Carneia took place in a late summer month (July, August or September) from the 7th to the 15th ending with a full moon.[17] Belligerents Athens, Plataea Achaemenid Empire Commanders Miltiades the Younger, Callimachus â€ , Arimnestus Datis â€ ?, Artaphernes Strength 7,000 to 9,000 Athenians, 1,000 Plataeans 20,000 to 60,000 a Casualties and losses 192 Athenians, 11 Plataeans (Herodotus) 6,400, 7 ships captured (Herodotus) a These are modern consensus estimates. ... An ephor (Classical Greek ) (from the Greek , epi, on or over, and , horaō, to see, i. ...


The oracle

The legend of Thermopylae as told by Herodotus has it that Sparta consulted the Oracle at Delphi before setting out to meet the Persian army. The Oracle is said to have made the following prophecy in hexameter verse:[18] Michelangelos rendering of the Delphic Sibyl The Delphic Sibyl was the priestess presiding over the Apollonian Oracle at Delphi, a Greek colony, located in a plateau on the side of Mount Parnassus. ... For other uses, see Delphi (disambiguation). ... Michelangelos rendering of the Delphic Sibyl The Delphic Sibyl was the priestess presiding over the Apollonian Oracle at Delphi, a Greek colony, located in a plateau on the side of Mount Parnassus. ... For other uses, see Prophecy (disambiguation). ... Hexameter is a literary and poetic form, consisting of six metrical feet per line as in the Iliad. ...

O ye men who dwell in the streets of broad Lacedaemon!
Either your glorious town shall be sacked by the children of Perseus,
Or, in exchange, must all through the whole Laconian country
Mourn for the loss of a king, descendant of great Heracles. Lacedaemon, or Lakedaimon, Grk. ... Perseus with the head of Medusa, by Antonio Canova, completed 1801 (Vatican Museums) Perseus, Perseos, or Perseas (Greek: Περσεύς, Περσέως, Περσέας), the legendary founder of Mycenae and of the Perseid dynasty there, was the first of the mythic heroes of Greek mythology whose exploits in defeating various archaic monsters provided the founding myths... Alcides redirects here. ...

Marry a good man

The overall commander of Greek forces was now King Leonidas, who was generally admired.[19] Herodotus writes that he was convinced he was going to certain death, as his forces were not adequate for a victory, and so selected only men with living sons.[20] Plutarch mentions in his Sayings of Spartan Women that, after encouraging him, Leonidas' wife Gorgo asked what she should do on his departure. He replied, "Marry a good man, and have good children."[21] Mestrius Plutarchus (Greek: Πλούταρχος; 46 - 127), better known in English as Plutarch, was a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist. ... Gorgo (fl. ...


Arrival of the Persians

Battle of Thermopylae and movements to Salamis, 480 BC
Battle of Thermopylae and movements to Salamis, 480 BC
A map showing the Greek world at the time of the battle
A map showing the Greek world at the time of the battle

Image File history File links Battle_of_Thermopylae_and_movements_to_Salamis,_480_BC.gif Summary Description  Battle of Thermopylae and movements to Salamis, 480 BC Author/Source  The Department of History, United States Military Academy Permission  In the public domain as original works of the United States federal government and/or military [1] Licensing File links... Image File history File links Battle_of_Thermopylae_and_movements_to_Salamis,_480_BC.gif Summary Description  Battle of Thermopylae and movements to Salamis, 480 BC Author/Source  The Department of History, United States Military Academy Permission  In the public domain as original works of the United States federal government and/or military [1] Licensing File links... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ...

Competing ideologies

Herodotus attests a conversation that took place early in the expedition between Xerxes and Demaratus, an exiled Spartan king under his employment. Xerxes asked Demaratus whether he thought that the Greeks would put up a fight, for in his opinion neither the Greeks nor even all peoples of Europe together would be able to stop him because they were disunited.[22] Demaratus replied:[23] Demaratus, king of Sparta from 515 until 491 BC of the Eurypontid line, successor to his father Ariston. ...

First, they will never accept conditions from you that bring slavery upon Hellas; and second, they will meet you in battle even if all the other Greeks are on your side. Do not ask me how many these men are who can do this; they will fight with you whether they have an army of a thousand men, or more than that, or less.

Xerxes laughed at this answer, claiming that "free men" of any number would never be able to stand against his army which was unified by a single ruler, and that obedience to one single master would make his troops extremely courageous, or they would be led into battle "by the whip" even against an army of any size. He added that "even if the Greeks have larger numbers than our highest estimate, we still would outnumber them 100 to 1". He asserted that his army contained men who would gladly fight with three Greeks at once and that Demaratus was talking nonsense.[24] To this Demaratus answered:[25]

I would most gladly fight with one of those men who claim to be each a match for three Greeks. So is it with the Lacedaemonians; fighting singly they are as brave as any man living, and together they are the best warriors on earth. They are free, yet not wholly free: law is their master, whom they fear much more than your men fear you. They do whatever it bids; and its bidding is always the same, that they must never flee from the battle before any multitude of men, but must abide at their post and there conquer or die.

The final decision

On the Persian army's arrival at Thermopylae, Greek troops instigated a council meeting. Some Peloponnesians suggested withdrawal to the Isthmus and blocking the passage to Peloponnesus. They were well aware that the Persians would have to go through Athens in order to reach them there. The Phocians and Locrians, whose states were located nearby, became indignant and advised defending Thermopylae and sending for more help. Leonidas and the Spartans agreed to defend Thermopylae.[26] Greece and the Peloponnese The Peloponnese or Peloponnesus (Greek: Πελοπόννησος Peloponnesos; see also List of Greek place names) is a large peninsula in southern Greece, forming the part of the country south of the Gulf of Corinth. ... The Isthmus of Corinth is the narrow landbridge which connects the Peloponnesos peninsula with the mainland of Greece, near the city of Corinth. ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... Phocis (Greek, Modern: Φωκίδα, Ancient/Katharevousa: -s, also Phokida, Phokis) is an ancient district of central Greece. ... The Locrians or Locri (Greek: ) were an ancient greek people in Greece. ...


Combing their long hair

Meanwhile, the Persians entered the pass and sent a mounted scout to reconnoiter. The Greeks allowed him to come up to the camp, observe them, and depart. When the scout reported to Xerxes the size of the Greek force and that the Spartans were indulging in calisthenics and combing their long hair, Xerxes found the reports laughable. Seeking again the counsel of Demaratus, Xerxes was told that the Spartans were preparing for battle and that it was their custom to adorn their hair when they were about to risk their lives. Demaratus called them "the bravest men in Greece" and warned the Great King that they intended to dispute the pass. He emphasized that he had tried to warn Xerxes earlier in the campaign, but the king had refused to believe him. He added that if Xerxes ever managed to subdue the Spartans, "there is no other nation in all the world which will venture to lift a hand in their defence" (Rawlinson translation).[27] Female internees practicing calisthenics in Manzanar. ...


Come and get them

Xerxes remained incredulous, finding it unbelievable for such a small army to contend with his own. Plutarch informs that he then sent emissaries to the Greek forces. At first, he asked Leonidas to join him by offering the kingship of all Greece. 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."[28] Then Xerxes asked him more forcefully to surrender their arms. To this Leonidas gave his noted answer: Μολὼν Λαβέ, "Come and get them".[29] The words MOLON LABE (ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ) in Greek as they are inscribed on the marble of the modern era monument at Thermopylae. ...


Despite their extremely disproportionate numbers, Greek morale was high. Herodotus writes that when Dienekes, a Spartan soldier, was informed that Persian arrows would be so numerous as "to blot out the sun", he responded with a characteristically laconic remark, "So much the better; we shall fight in the shade."[30] Dienekes (Greek: Διηνέκης) was a Spartan officer present at the Battle of Thermopylae. ... A Laconic phrase is a very concise or terse statement, named after Laconia (a. ...


Battle

Failure of the frontal assault

Greek phalanx based on sources from The Perseus Project.
Greek phalanx based on sources from The Perseus Project.
Persian warriors
Persian warriors

Xerxes waited four days for the Greek force to disperse. On the fifth day he sent Medes and Cissians, along with relatives of those who had died ten years earlier in the battle of Marathon, to take the Greeks prisoner and bring them before him.[31][32] They soon found themselves in a frontal assault.[31] The Greeks had camped on either side of the rebuilt Phocian wall. The wall was guarded and the Greeks fought in front of it.[33] Image File history File links Greek_Phalanx. ... Image File history File links Greek_Phalanx. ... Median Empire, ca. ... External links Official website of Khuzestan Governorship Categories: Iran geography stubs | Provinces of Iran ... Belligerents Athens, Plataea Achaemenid Empire Commanders Miltiades the Younger, Callimachus â€ , Arimnestus Datis â€ ?, Artaphernes Strength 7,000 to 9,000 Athenians, 1,000 Plataeans 20,000 to 60,000 a Casualties and losses 192 Athenians, 11 Plataeans (Herodotus) 6,400, 7 ships captured (Herodotus) a These are modern consensus estimates. ... The military tactic of frontal assault is a direct, hostile movement of forces towards enemy forces in a large number, in an attempt to overwhelm the enemy. ...


Details of the tactics are scant. Diodorus says "the men stood shoulder to shoulder" and the Greeks were "superior in valor and in the great size of their shields."[34] The formation being described is the standard Greek phalanx, a wall of overlapping shields and layered spear points, which would only have been effective if it spanned the width of the pass. Herodotus says that the units for each state were kept together.[19] The small shields and shorter spears of the Persians were not a match for the superior armament of the Greek hoplites.[34][35] The Greeks killed so many Medes that Xerxes is said to have started up off the seat from which he was watching the battle three times.[36] According to Ctesias, the first wave was "cut to pieces" with only two or three Spartans dead.[37] For other uses, see phalanx. ... Warfare in Hellenic Greece centered mainly around heavy infantrymen called hoplites. ... Ctesias of Cnidus (in Caria) (Greek ), was a Greek physician and historian, who flourished in the 5th century BC. In early life he was physician to Artaxerxes Mnemon, whom he accompanied in 401 BC on his expedition against his brother Cyrus the Younger. ...


According to Herodotus and Diodorus, the king, having taken the measure of the enemy, threw his best troops into a second assault on the same day: the Immortals, an elite corps of 10,000 men.[34][35] Ctesias tells a totally different story, that Xerxes sent another 20,000 troops against the Greeks, after the first 10,000 under Artapanus were defeated. They also failed to open the pass even though they were flogged by their leaders to press on.[37] Although there might have been 10,000 Medes, the Immortals were only 10,000 and as elite troops it would not have been necessary to flog them. On the second day Xerxes sent, according to Ctesias, another 50,000 men to assault the pass, but again they failed. Xerxes at last stopped the assault and withdrew to his camp, totally perplexed.[37] A Persian Immortal wielding a spear, wicker shield, dagger, and bow. ... Artapanus was a Persian General under Xerxes I. According to Ctesias Persica, Artapanus led the first wave of Persians against the Spartan force at the Battle of Thermopylae in 480 BC. Although he led a force of 10,000 men, they were routed by the 300 Spartan defenders. ...


Encirclement of the Greeks

Late on the second day of battle, as the Persian king was pondering what to do next, he received a windfall: a Malian Greek traitor named Ephialtes informed him of a path around Thermopylae and offered to guide the Persian army. Ephialtes was motivated by the desire of a reward.[38] For this act, the name of Ephialtes received a lasting stigma, coming to mean "nightmare" and becoming the archetypal term for a "traitor" in Greek.[39] For other uses, see Ephialtes (disambiguation). ...


In Herodotus, Xerxes sends his commander Hydarnes to flank the pass with the men under his command, but he does not say who those men are.[40] Hydarnes commanded the Immortals, but they had been cut to pieces the day before. Ctesias tells a different story, asserting that 40,000 troops were sent around the pass conducted by the leaders of the Trachinians.[37] The stories can be reconciled by presuming that Hydarnes was given overall command of an enhanced force including what was left of the Immortals, but it is only a presumption. The Immortals were given such a name because when a member fell in battle he was immediately replaced by another to maintain the 10,000, therefore it is also possible they had been replenished from the previous day's fighting. The path led from east of the Persian camp along the ridge of Mt. Anopaea behind the cliffs that flanked the pass. It branched with one path leading to Phocis and the other down to the Gulf of Malis at Alpenus, first town of Locris. Leonidas had stationed 1,000 Phocian volunteers on the heights to guard that path.[41] Hydarnes, son of Hydarnes, was an eminent Persian, the commander of the Ten Thousand Immortals during the time of the Persian Wars with Greece. ... Trachis was a landscape in ancient Greece. ... Locris was a region of ancient Greece, made up of two districts. ... Phocis (Greek, Modern: Φωκίδα/Fokída, Ancient/Katharevousa: Φωκίς/Phokis; named after the Greek mythological personage Phocus) is an ancient district of central Greece and a prefecture of modern Greece located in Sterea Hellas, one of the thirteen peripheries of Greece. ...


Their first warning of the approach of the Persians at daybreak was the rustling of oak leaves. Herodotus says that they jumped up and were greatly amazed.[42] Hydarnes was perhaps as amazed to see them hastily arming themselves as they were to see him and the Persian forces. He feared that they were Spartans, but was enlightened by Ephialtes and proceeded by firing "showers of arrows" at them. The Phocians retreated to the crest of the mountain to make their stand and defend their city which was behind the mountain range, but the Persians took the left branch of the pass to Alpenus and hence circled behind the main Greek force.[42]


Last stand of the Greeks

Immortals (lancers), detail from the archers' frieze in Darius' palace in Susa.
Immortals (lancers), detail from the archers' frieze in Darius' palace in Susa.

Learning that the Phocians had not held, Leonidas called a council of war at dawn. Some Greeks argued for withdrawal, while others pledged to stay. After the council, many of the Greek forces did choose to withdraw.[43] Herodotus believed that Leonidas blessed their departure with an order, but he also offered the alternative point of view that those retreating forces departed without orders.[44] The Spartans had pledged themselves to fight to the death. However, a contingent of about 700 Thespians, led by general Demophilus, the son of Diadromes, refused to leave with the other Greeks, but cast their lot with the Spartans.[45] Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (924x1322, 1084 KB) Summary Description: Lancers, detail from the archers frieze in Darius palace, Susa. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (924x1322, 1084 KB) Summary Description: Lancers, detail from the archers frieze in Darius palace, Susa. ... For other uses, see Susa (disambiguation). ... A council of war is a term in military science that describes a meeting held to decide on a course of action, usually in the midst of a battle. ... Thespiae (Greek Θεσπιαι, Thespiai) was an ancient Greek city in Boeotia. ... Demophilus (died 480 BC) was a general of Thespiae and the son of Diadromes. ...


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. They fought with spears until every spear was shattered and then switched to xiphē (short swords). In this struggle, Herodotus states that two brothers of Xerxes fell: Abrocomes and Hyperanthes. Leonidas also died in the assault and they fought over his body, the Greeks taking possession.[46] This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Abrocomes was a son of king Darius I of Persia and his wife Phratagune, who died with his full brother Hyperanthes in the battle of Thermopylae, while fighting over the body of Leonidas (Herodotus, 7. ... Hyperanthes was a son of Darius the Great of Persia and brother to Xerxes I. He was present in the second invasion of Greece in 480 BC. According to Herodotus, he fought and died alongside his other brother Abrocomes in the battle of Thermopylae in the final phase known as...


Receiving intelligence that Ephialtes and the Immortals were advancing toward the rear, the Greeks withdrew and took a stand on a hill behind the wall. The Thebans "moved away from their companions, and with hands upraised, advanced toward the barbarians..." (Rawlinson translation), but a few were slain before their surrender was accepted. The king later had the Theban prisoners branded with the royal mark.[47] Of the remaining defenders Herodotus says: "Here they defended themselves to the last, those who still had swords using them, and the others resisting with their hands and teeth; ...."[48] Tearing down part of the wall, Xerxes ordered the hill surrounded and the Persians rained down arrows until every last Greek was dead.[48] In 1939 the archaeologist Spyridon Marinatos, excavating at Thermopylae, found large numbers of Persian bronze arrowheads on Kolonos Hill, changing the identification of the hill on which the Greeks died from a smaller one nearer the wall.[49] Spyridon Nikolaou Marinatos (November 4, 1901 - October 1, 1974) was one of the premier Greek archaeologists of the 20th century, whose most notable discovery was the site of the Minoan port city on the island of Thera destroyed and preserved by the massive volcanic eruption, ca 1650-1600 BCE, spawning...


Aftermath

When the body of Leonidas was recovered by the Persians, Xerxes, in a rage against Leonidas, ordered that the head be cut off and the body crucified. Herodotus observes that this was very uncommon for the Persians, as they had the habit of treating "valiant warriors" with great honor[50] (the example of Pytheas captured earlier off Skyros also suggests that).[51] However, Xerxes was known for his rage, as when he had the Hellespont whipped because it would not obey him.[52] Leonidas can refer to: Leonidas I, king of Sparta, ruled c. ... For other uses, see Crucifixion (disambiguation). ... Skyros (Greek: Σκύρος) is the southernmost island of the Sporades, a Greek archipelago in the Aegean Sea. ... The Helespont/Dardanelles, a long narrow strait dividing the Balkans (Europe) along the Gallipoli peninsula from Asia Anatolia (Asia Minor). ...


Xerxes was curious as to what the Greeks were trying to do (presumably because there were so few numbers) and had some Arcadian deserters interrogated in his presence. The answer was that all the other men were participating in the Olympic Games. When Xerxes asked what the prize for the winner was, "an olive-wreath" was the answer. Upon hearing this, Tigranes, a Persian general, said: "Good heavens, Mardonius, what kind of men are these that you have pitted against us? It is not for money that they contend but for glory of achievement!" (Godley translation) or otherwise "Ye Gods, Mardonius, what men have you brought us to fight against? Men that fight not for gold, but for honour."[53] Ruins of the training grounds at Olympia The Ancient Olympic Games, originally referred to as simply the Olympic Games (Greek: ; Olympiakoi Agones) were a series of athletic competitions held between various city-states of Ancient Greece. ... Tigranes (sometimes Tigran or Dikran) was the name of a number of historical figures, primarily kings of Armenia. ... Mardonius was a Persian commander during the Persian Wars with Greece in the 5th century BC. He was the son of Gobryas and the son-in-law of Darius I of Persia, whose daughter Artozostra he had married. ...


After the Persians' departure, the Greeks collected their dead and buried them on the hill. A stone lion was erected to commemorate Leonidas.[48] Forty years after the battle, Leonidas' bones were returned to Sparta where he was buried again with full honors and funeral games were held every year in his memory.[54]


The simultaneous naval Battle of Artemisium was a stalemate, whereupon the Athenian navy retreated. The Persians were now in control of the Aegean Sea and all of peninsular Greece as far south as Attica. The Spartans prepared to defend the Isthmus of Corinth and the Peloponnese, while Xerxes went on to sack Athens, whose inhabitants had already fled to the island of Salamis. In September, the Greeks defeated the Persians at the naval Battle of Salamis, which led to the rapid retreat of Xerxes. The remaining Persian army, left under the charge of Mardonius, was defeated in the Battle of Plataea by a combined Greek army again led by the Spartans, under the regent Pausanias.[55] Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Eurybiades of Sparta Themistocles of Athens Adeimantus of Corinth Unknown Strength 333 ships 500 ships Casualties Half of Fleet (Herodotus) Unknown The naval Battle of Artemisium took place, according to tradition, on the same day as the Battle of Thermopylae on August 11, 480... Look up Aegean Sea in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article is about Attica in Greece. ... The Isthmus of Corinth is the narrow landbridge which connects the Peloponnesos peninsula with the mainland of Greece, near the city of Corinth. ... Greece and the Peloponnese The Peloponnese or Peloponnesus (Greek: Πελοπόννησος Peloponnesos; see also List of Greek place names) is a large peninsula in southern Greece, forming the part of the country south of the Gulf of Corinth. ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... Salamis (Greek, Modern: Σαλαμίνα Salamína, Ancient/Katharevousa: Σαλαμίς Salamís) is the largest Greek island in the Saronic Gulf, about 1 nautical mile (2 km) off-coast from Piraeus. ... For other uses, see Battle of Salamis (disambiguation). ... Mardonius was a Persian commander during the Persian Wars with Greece in the 5th century BC. He was the son of Gobryas and the son-in-law of Darius I of Persia, whose daughter Artozostra he had married. ... Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Pausanias Mardonius â€  Strength 110,000 (Herodotus) ~40,000 (Modern Consensus) 300,000 (Herodotus) 50,000-70,000 [1][2][3] (Modern Consensus) Casualties 10,000+ (Ephorus and Diodorus) 1,360 (Plutarch) 759 (Herodotus) 43,000 survived (Herodotus) The Battle of Plataea was the final... Pausanias (Greek = Παυσανίας) was a Spartan general of the 5th century BCE. He was the nephew of Leonidas I and served as regent after his uncles death, as Leonidas son, Pleistarchus was still under-age. ...


Topography of the battlefield

Thermopylae derives half of its name from its hot springs. This river is formed by the steaming water which smells like sulfur. In the background, you can see buildings of the modern baths. In ancient times the springs created a swamp.
Thermopylae derives half of its name from its hot springs. This river is formed by the steaming water which smells like sulfur. In the background, you can see buildings of the modern baths. In ancient times the springs created a swamp.

At the time, the pass of Thermopylae consisted of a track along the shore of the Gulf of Malis so narrow that only one chariot could pass through at a time.[56] On the southern side of the track stood the cliffs, while on the north side was the gulf. Along the path was a series of three constrictions, or "gates" (pylai), and at the center gate a short wall that had been erected by the Phocians in the previous century to aid in their defense against Thessalian invasions.[56] The name "Hot Gates" comes from the hot springs that were located there. Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1920 pixel, file size: 2. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1920 pixel, file size: 2. ... For the clipper ship, see Thermopylae (clipper). ... Green Dragon Spring at Norris Geyser A hot spring is a place where warm or hot groundwater issues from the ground on a regular basis for at least a predictable part of the year, and is significantly above the ambient ground temperature (which is usually around 55~57°F or... This article is about the chemical element. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Phocis (Greek, Modern: Φωκίδα, Ancient/Katharevousa: -s, also Phokida, Phokis) is an ancient district of central Greece. ... Thessaly (Θεσσαλια; modern Greek Thessalía) is one of the 13 peripheries of Greece, and is further sub-divided into 4 prefectures. ... Green Dragon Spring at Norris Geyser A hot spring is a place where warm or hot groundwater issues from the ground on a regular basis for at least a predictable part of the year, and is significantly above the ambient ground temperature (which is usually around 55~57 F or...


Today, the pass is not near the sea but is several miles inland due to infilling of the Gulf of Malis. The old track appears at the foot of hills around the plain, flanked by a modern road. Recent core samples indicate that the pass was only 100 meters wide and the waters came up to the gates. Says Lyn Dore: "Little do the visitors realize that the battle took place across the road from the monument."[57] The pass still is a natural defensive position to modern armies and British Commonwealth forces in World War II made another defense against the Nazi invasion meters from the original battle field. Core sample. ... The Commonwealth of Nations as of 2008. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... Combatants ANZAC Corps, Australian Forces Nazi Germany Commanders General Bernard Freyberg George Vasey  ??? The Battle of Thermopylae during World War II occurred in 1941 following the retreat from the Olympus and Servia passes. ... National Socialism redirects here. ...


Detailed maps of the region are to be found at these sites:

Pictures showing the terrain are to be found at these sites:

Size of the Persian army

Primary sources

In 480 BC, the Persian army and navy arrived at the Persian garrison of Doriscus in Thrace. A bridge of ships had been made at Abydos. This allowed the land forces to cross the Hellespont. At Doriscus, Xerxes conducted a review and a count of his army and navy, which was recorded by the Persian scribes. Herodotus must have had some sort of knowledge of this account, as he lists and describes the units and gives the size of Xerxes' combined forces as follows: Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak  Thrace (Bulgarian: , Greek: , Attic Greek: ThrāíkÄ“ or ThrēíkÄ“, Latin: , Turkish: ) is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. ... Abydos, an ancient city of Mysia, in Asia Minor, situated at Nagara Point on the Hellespont, which is here scarcely a mile broad. ... The Helespont/Dardanelles, a long narrow strait dividing the Balkans (Europe) along the Gallipoli peninsula from Asia Anatolia (Asia Minor). ... Xerxes I of Persia (sometimes known as Xerxes the Great, in old Persian, 𐎧𐏁𐎹𐎠𐎼𐏁𐎠[2]) was a king of Persia (reigned 486–465 BC) of the Achaemenid dynasty. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ...

Units Numbers
1,207 triremes with 200-man crews from 12 ethnic groups: Phoenicians of Palestine, Egyptians,[58] Cyprians,[59] Cilicians, Pamphylians, Lycians, Dorians of Asia, Carians, Ionians, Aegean islanders, Aeolians, Greeks from Pontus 241,000[60]
30 marines per trireme from the Persians, Medes or Sacae[61] 36,210[60]
3,000 penteconters with 80-man crews 240,000[60][62]
Total of ships' complements 517,610[60]
Infantry from 47 ethnic groups:[63] Persians,[64] Medes, Cissians, Hyrcanians,[65] Assyrians, Chaldeans,[66] Bactrians, Sacae,[67] Indians,[68] Arians, Parthians, Chorasmians, Sogdians, Gandarians, Dadicae,[69] Caspians, Sarangae, Pactyes,[70] Utians, Mycians, Paricanians,[71] Arabians, Ethiopians of Africa,[72] Ethiopians of Baluchistan,[73] Libyans,[74] Paphlagonians, Ligyes, Matieni, Mariandyni, Cappadocians,[75] Phrygians, Armenians,[76] Lydians, Mysians,[77] Asian Thracians,[78] Lasonii, Milyae,[79] Moschi, Tibareni, Macrones, Mossynoeci,[80] Mares, Colchians, Alarodians, Saspirians[81] and Red Sea islanders.[82] 1,700,000[83]
Horse cavalry from the Persians,[84] Sagartians,[85] Medes, Cissians, Indians, Caspians and Paricanians.[86] 80,000[87]
Arab camel troops and Libyan charioteers 20,000[60]
Total Asian land and sea forces[88] 2,317,610[60]
120 triremes with 200-man crews from the Greeks of Thrace and the islands near it. 24,000[89]
Balkan infantry from 13 ethnic groups: European Thracians, Paeonians, Eordi, Bottiaei, Chalcidians, Brygians, Pierians, Macedonians, Perrhaebi, Enienes, Dolopes, Magnesians, Achaeans 300,000[89]
Grand Total, Asian and European 2,641,610

This number is doubled in order to account for support personnel and thus Herodotus reports that the total Persian force numbered 5,283,220 men.[90] The poet Simonides, who was a contemporary, talks of three million combatants.[91] One century later, Ctesias of Cnidus gives 800,000 as the total number of the army that met in Doriscus.[92] A Greek trireme. ... Phoenicia (nonstandardly, Phenicia; pronounced [1], Greek: : PhoiníkÄ“, Latin: ) was an ancient civilization centered in the north of ancient Canaan, with its heartland along the coastal regions of modern day Lebanon, Syria and Israel. ... A 2003 satellite image of the region. ... Greek Cypriot refers to the ethnic Greek population of Cyprus. ... The Kingdom of Cilician Armenia, 1199-1375. ... Pamphylia, in ancient geography, was the region in the south of Asia Minor, between Lycia and Cilicia, extending from the Mediterranean to Mount Taurus. ... Lycian rock cut tombs of Dalyan Lycian rock cut tombs of Dalyan Lycia (in Lycian, Trm̃misa (see List of Lycian place names); in ancient Greek, Λυκία and in modern Turkish, Likya) is a region in the modern-day provinces of Antalya and MuÄŸla on the southern coast of Turkey. ... This article or section should include material from Dorian invasion The Dorians were one of the ancient Hellenic (Greek) races. ... Location of Caria Photo of a 15th century map showing Caria. ... Location of Ionia Ionia (Greek Ιωνία; see also list of traditional Greek place names) was an ancient region of southwestern coastal Anatolia (in present-day Turkey, the region nearest Ä°zmir,) on the Aegean Sea. ... Aegean Sea Islands: map showing island groups. ... The Aeolians were one of the ancient Greek tribes. ... Traditional rural Pontic house A man in traditional clothes from Trabzon, illustration Pontus is the name which was applied, in ancient times, to extensive tracts of country in the northeast of Asia Minor (modern Turkey) bordering on the Euxine (Black Sea), which was often called simply Pontos (the main), by... British Royal Marines in a Rigid Raider assault watercraft Marines (from the English adjective marine, meaning of the sea , from Latin language mare, meaning sea, via French adjective marin(e), of the sea) are, in principle, seaborne land soldiers that are part of a navy. ... This article is about the Persian people, an ethnic group found mainly in Iran. ... Median Empire, ca. ... The Sakas or Saka race was a group of people who lived in present day Uzbekistan around 2000 BC. The Sakas followed other Aryans into present day Iran, and returned to their original area in Central Asia. ... For other uses, see Galley (disambiguation). ... This article is about the Persian people, an ethnic group found mainly in Iran. ... Median Empire, ca. ... External links Official website of Khuzestan Governorship Categories: Iran geography stubs | Provinces of Iran ... The Persian Empire of the Achaemenid Dynasty was at its height the most powerful force in the known world, incorporating a variety of cultures and peoples. ... For other uses, see Chaldean. ... Bactria, about 320 BC Bactria (Bactriana, Bākhtar in Persian, also Bhalika in Arabic and Indian languages, and Ta-Hia in Chinese) was the ancient Greek name of the country between the range of the Hindu Kush and the Amu Darya (Oxus); its capital, Bactra or Balhika or Bokhdi (now... The Sakas or Saka race was a group of people who lived in present day Uzbekistan around 2000 BC. The Sakas followed other Aryans into present day Iran, and returned to their original area in Central Asia. ... This is the ancient Latin name (Greek name, Areia) for the area around Herat, in NW Afghanistan. ... Parthia at its greatest extent under Mithridates II (123–88 BC) Capital Ctesiphon, Ecbatana Government Monarchy [[Category:Former monarchies}}|Parthia, 247 BC]] History  - Established 247 BC  - Disestablished 220 AD Parthian votive relief. ... After Islamic Conquest  Modern SSR = Soviet Socialist Republic Afghanistan  Azerbaijan  Bahrain  Iran  Iraq  Tajikistan  Uzbekistan  This box:      Khwarezm was a series of states centered on the Amu Darya river delta of the former Aral Sea, in modern Uzbekistan, extending across the Ust-Urt plateau and possibly as far west as... Sogdiana, ca. ... Gandhāra (Sanskrit: गन्धार, Persian; Gandara, Waihind) (Urdu: گندھارا) is the name of an ancient Indian Mahajanapada, currently in northern Pakistan (the North-West Frontier Province and parts of northern Punjab and Kashmir) and eastern Afghanistan. ... Daradas were a people who lived north and north-east to the Kashmir valley. ... The Caspians or Caspi were ancient people dwelling along the southwestern shore of the Caspian Sea. ... Drangiana (Old Persian: Zranka waterland) was a historical region of the Achaemenid Empire, now part of Afghanistan and Eastern Iran. ... Language(s) Pashto Religion(s) Islam (predominantly Sunni) Pashtuns (Pashto: پشتون or پختون , also rendered as Pushtuns, Pakhtuns, Pukhtuns), also called Pathans (Urdu: پٹھان, Hindi: पठान ), ethnic Afghans,[10] or synonymously Afghans[11] (Persian: افغان ), are an Eastern Iranian ethno-linguistic group with populations primarily in eastern and southern Afghanistan and in the North-West... Maka was a satrapy (province) of the Achaemenid Empire corresponding to modern day Oman. ... Balochistan, or Ballsforchinstan, Balochi, Pashto, Urdu: بلوچستان) is a province in Pakistan, the largest in the country by geographical area. ... Arabia redirects here. ... This article is about the African country. ... Sistān o BalÅ«chestān is one of the 30 provinces of Iran. ... Paphlagonia was an ancient area on the Black Sea coast of north central Anatolia, situated between Bithynia and Pontus, and separated from Phrygia (later, Galatia) by a prolongation to the east of the Bithynian Olympus. ... Kutaisi (Georgian: ; ancient names: Aea/Aia, Kutatisi, Kutaïssi ) is Georgias second largest city in the western province of Imereti. ... Matiene was the name of northwestern Iran from the time of the arrival of Iranians, who overran the Kingdom of Mannae. ... Bithynia was an ancient region, kingdom and Roman province in the northwest of Asia Minor, adjoining the Propontis, the Thracian Bosporus and the Euxine (today Black Sea). ... For other uses, see Cappadocia (disambiguation). ... In antiquity, Phrygia (Greek: ) was a kingdom in the west central part of the Anatolia. ... Lydia (Greek ) is a historic region of western Anatolia, congruent with Turkeys modern provinces of Ä°zmir and Manisa. ... Mysia. ... The Bithyni were a Thracian tribe who, along with the Thyni, migrated to Bithynia in Anatolia - a region which they gave their name to. ... Pisidia was an inland region in southern Anatolia. ... Lycian rock cut tombs of Dalyan Lycian rock cut tombs of Dalyan Lycia (in Lycian, Trm̃misa (see List of Lycian place names); in ancient Greek, Λυκία and in modern Turkish, Likya) is a region in the modern-day provinces of Antalya and MuÄŸla on the southern coast of Turkey. ... The Mushki (MuÅ¡ki) were an Iron Age people of Anatolia, known from and Assyrian sources. ... Tabal (Bib. ... Mossynoikoi, latinised Mossynoeci, is a Greek compound noun meaning dwellers in wooden towers. The Greeks of the Euxine Sea applied it to the peoples of the northern Anatolian coast just west of Trebizond. ... Trabzon, formerly known as Trebizond (Greek: ), is a city on the Black Sea coast of north-eastern Turkey and the capital of Trabzon Province. ... In ancient geography, Colchis or Kolchis (Georgian/Laz: კოლხეთი, kolkheti; Greek: , Kolchís) was an ancient Georgian [1][2][3], state[4] [5]kingdom and region[6] in the Western Georgia (Caucasus region), which played an important role in the ethnic and cultural formation of the Georgian nation and its subgroups. ... Urartu at its greatest extent 743 BC Urartu (Biainili in Urartian) was an ancient kingdom in the mountainous plateau between Asia Minor, Mesopotamia, and Caucasus mountains, later known as the Armenian Highland, and it centered around Lake Van (present-day eastern Turkey). ... perehan is the best The history of the Kurdish people stretches from ancient times to the present day. ... Location of the Red Sea The Red Sea is an inlet of the Indian Ocean between Africa and Asia. ... This article is about the Persian people, an ethnic group found mainly in Iran. ... Sagartians were ancient Iranian (Aryan) tribes, dwelling in Iranian plateau, whose exact location is unknown, but possibly south of Alborz Mountains and north of Yazd in central Iran. ... Median Empire, ca. ... External links Official website of Khuzestan Governorship Categories: Iran geography stubs | Provinces of Iran ... The Caspians or Caspi were ancient people dwelling along the southwestern shore of the Caspian Sea. ... Balochistan, or Ballsforchinstan, Balochi, Pashto, Urdu: بلوچستان) is a province in Pakistan, the largest in the country by geographical area. ... For other uses, see Arab (disambiguation). ... A Greek trireme. ... Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak  Thrace (Bulgarian: , Greek: , Attic Greek: ThrāíkÄ“ or ThrēíkÄ“, Latin: , Turkish: ) is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. ... Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak  Thrace (Bulgarian: , Greek: , Attic Greek: ThrāíkÄ“ or ThrēíkÄ“, Latin: , Turkish: ) is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. ... Paionia or Paeonia (in Greek Παιονία) was in ancient geography, the land of the Paeonians (Ancient Greek Παίονες), the exact boundaries of which, like the early history of its inhabitants, are very obscure. ... Eordea (Greek: Εορδαία), rarely Eordaia, Latin: Eordaia is a province in the northern Greece. ... Bottiaea (Bottiaia) was a region of ancient Macedon. ... Categories: Greece geography stubs ... Bryges or Brigi were said by Herodotus to the the name by which the Phrygians were known before they crossed the Hellespont into Anatolia, possibly associated with the collapse of the late Bronze Age. ... Pieria (Πιερία) is one of the fifty-one prefectures of Greece. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Bold textil8jjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjpooSimonides of Ceos (ca. ... Ctesias of Cnidus (in Caria) (Greek ), was a Greek physician and historian, who flourished in the 5th century BC. In early life he was physician to Artaxerxes Mnemon, whom he accompanied in 401 BC on his expedition against his brother Cyrus the Younger. ...


Modern estimates

Modern scholars have given different estimates based on knowledge of the Persian military systems, their logistical capabilities, the Greek countryside, and supplies available along the army's route.


Grote

An early and very influential modern, George Grote, set the tone by expressing incredulity at the numbers given by Herodotus:[93] "To admit this overwhelming total, or anything near to it, is obviously impossible." Grote's main objection is the supply problem, but he nowhere states any measure of supply capability nor did he have available any scientific data on the topic. He does not reject Herodotus altogether, citing the latter's reporting of the Persians' careful methods of accounting and their stockpiling of supply caches for three years. He points to the contradictions in the ancient estimates and refrains from making one of his own or implying that such an estimate is possible. It was up to subsequent scholars to make them. George Grote George Grote (November 17, 1794 - June 18, 1871) was an English classical historian. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: Hēródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ...


Maurice

A pivotal study of the early 20th century by Major-General Sir John Frederick Maurice focuses on the water supply.[94] A former British transport officer himself, he had access to the British Admiralty handbook containing data on the rivers of Greece. Calculating that a force of 200,000 men and 70,000 animals would strain the water resources, and noting that Herodotus reports those resources were strained,[95] he suggests that Herodotus may have confused the Persian terms for chiliarchy (1,000) and myriarchy (10,000), leading to an exaggeration by a factor of ten. He therefore modifies Herodotus' figure for land combatants only to about 210,000 men, 75,000 animals.[96] This does not include support personnel. Major-General Sir John Frederick Maurice (1841-1912) was an English soldier, born in London. ...


Hammond

Since Maurice the number of Persian troops has become a specialized topic. There are no standard estimates or ranges of estimates.[97] One of the most widely read and detailed summaries is the contribution of N.G.L. Hammond to the Cambridge Ancient History.[98] Working entirely from ancient sources, Hammond estimates the Persian fleet, based on its size at the Battle of Salamis, to have been 1,407 warships, 281,400 naval personnel, with another 3,000 vessels, 120,000 men, in support, for a total of about 400,000 men, to which must be added another 8,000 men operating 400 supply ships. The grand total of naval personnel is 408,000 men in about 4,800 ships. Nicholas Geoffrey Lemprière Hammond (born November 15 1907; died March 24 2001) was a British scholar of ancient Greece of great accomplishment and an operative for the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) in occupied Greece during World War Two. ... For other uses, see Battle of Salamis (disambiguation). ...


For the land force under Xerxes, based on what was said about the land force under Mardonius at the Battle of Plataea, Hammond estimates 220,000 men plus 22,000 in the supply services for a total of 242,000 men. Note that Hammond's postulate of supply ships minimizes the resources of the Greek countryside as a limiting factor. Some have believed that Herodotus or his sources had access to official Persian Empire records of the forces involved in the expedition.[99] Whatever the real numbers were, it is clear that Xerxes was anxious to ensure a successful expedition by mustering an overwhelming numerical superiority by land and by sea.[99] Whether he was able to bring this superiority to bear or deploy it effectively are other questions. Mardonius was a Persian commander during the Persian Wars with Greece in the 5th century BC. He was the son of Gobryas and the son-in-law of Darius I of Persia, whose daughter Artozostra he had married. ... Combatants Greek city-states Persia Commanders Pausanias Mardonius â€  Strength 110,000 (Herodotus) ~40,000 (Modern Consensus) 300,000 (Herodotus) 50,000-70,000 [1][2][3] (Modern Consensus) Casualties 10,000+ (Ephorus and Diodorus) 1,360 (Plutarch) 759 (Herodotus) 43,000 survived (Herodotus) The Battle of Plataea was the final...


Size of the Greek army

According to Herodotus,[100] and Diodorus Siculus,[101] the Greek army included the following forces: Diodorus Siculus (c. ...

Units Numbers (Herodotus) Numbers (Diodorus Siculus)
Spartans 300 300
Lacedaemonians - 1,000
Mantineans 500 3,000
(the rest of the Greeks sent with Leonidas)
Tegeans 500
Arcadian Orchomenos 120
Other Arcadians 1,000
Corinthians 400
Phlians 200
Mycenaeans 80
Total Peloponnesians 3,100 4,000 (4,300)
Thespians 700 -
Melians - 1,000
Thebans 400 400
Phocians 1,000 1,000
Opuntian Locrians "All they had" -
Grand Total More than 5,200 by the number of Opuntian Locrians 6,400 (6,700)

It is not known for certain whether the 1,000 Lacedemonians mentioned by Diodorus Siculus include the Spartans; the total of 4,000 implies that it does. As the Spartans themselves generally meant "other Lacedaemonians" by the term, the 4,000 probably does not include them. A possible further 900 Helots also fought. Herodotus reports that at Xerxes' public showing of the dead, "helots were also there for them to see",[102] but he does not say how many or in what capacity they served. There is no reason to doubt that they served in their traditional role as armed retainers to individual Spartans. In the passage summarized by the table, Herodotus tallies 3,100 Peloponnesians at Thermopylae before the battle[103] but in another passage he quotes an inscription by Simonides saying there were 4,000;[104] hence, it is possible to account for the difference (without proof) by hypothesizing that 900 helots fought, three per Spartan hoplite.[105] For modern day Sparta, see Sparti (municipality). ... Lacedaemon, or Lakedaimon, Grk. ... Mantinea is a city in the central Peloponnese that was the site of two significant battles in Classical Greek history. ... There is also an ancient Tegea near Kissamos in the island of Crete, see Tegea, Crete Tegea was an important religious center of ancient Greek containing the Temple of Athena Alea. ... Orchomenus or Orchomenos or Orkhomenos (Greek: ) was an ancient city of Arcadia, Greece, called by Thucydides (v. ... This article is about a region of Greece. ... Temple of Apollo at Corinth Corinth, or Korinth (Κόρινθος) is a Greek city, on the Isthmus of Corinth, the original isthmus, the narrow stretch of land that joins the Peloponnesus to the mainland of Greece. ... Phlius was a Greek city in the northwestern Argolid, in the Peloponnese. ... A clay tablet with writing in Linear B from Mycenae. ... Peloponnesos (Greek: Πελοπόννησος, sometime Latinized as Peloponnesus or Anglicized as The Peloponnese) is a large peninsula in Greece, forming the part of the country south of the Isthmus of Corinth. ... Thespiae (Greek Θεσπιαι, Thespiai) was an ancient Greek city in Boeotia. ... Thebes (Demotic Greek: Θήβα — Thíva; Katharevousa: — Thêbai or Thívai) is a city in Greece, situated to the north of the Cithaeron range, which divides Boeotia from Attica, and on the southern edge of the Boeotian plain. ... Phocion (c402 - c318 BC), Athenian statesman and general, was born the son of a small manufacturer. ... Opuntian Locris or Eastern Locris was an ancient Greek region inhabited by the tribe of the Locri Epicnemidii (Greek: ) or Locri Opuntii (Greek: ), a division of the Locrians. ... Laconia (; see also List of traditional Greek place names), also known as Lacedaemonia, is a prefecture in Greece. ... Diodorus Siculus (c. ... The Helots (in Classical Greek / Heílôtes) were the serfs of Sparta. ... This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ...


Pausanias' account agrees with that of Herodotus (whom he probably read) except that he gives the number of Locrians, which Herodotus declined to estimate. Residing in the direct path of the Persian advance, they gave all the fighting men they had to the number of 6,000 men, which, added to Herodotus' 5,200, amounts to a force of 11,200.[106] Many modern historians, who usually consider Herodotus more reliable,[1] add the 1,000 Lacedaemonians and the 900 Helots to Herodotus' 5,200 to obtain 7,100 or about 7,000 men as a standard number,[107] neglecting Diodorus' Melians and Pausanias' Locrians. That is the approach taken in this article; it is, however, not at all clear that they can reasonably be neglected. Pausanias (Greek: ) was a Greek traveller and geographer of the 2nd century A.D., who lived in the times of Hadrian, Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius. ...


It is obviously not possible given the sources and known history of the battle to arrive at anything like precise numbers; moreover, the units were rotated in and out of the battle. It is unlikely even the Greeks knew the number of men that fought or were killed. The numbers changed later on in the battle as the entire army retreated and only 2,300 Spartans, Helots, Thespians and Thebans remained.[1]


Reliability of Herodotus

Since nearly all of the sources for the account of the battle come from Herodotus, many writers have called into question the accuracy of his accounts or statistics. For example, Herodotus estimated that the total size of the Persian army in their empire was 5,283,220; this was dismissed as an "absurd exaggeration" by renowned archaeologist and ancient Greek historian John Boardman.[108] Herodotus claimed that the land and naval forces of Xerxes at the passage of Hellespont totalled 2,317,000 in addition to 2,000,000 slaves and support personnel; this figure has also been called into question.[109] Sir John Boardman Kt FBA HonRA (b. ...


Monuments at the site

Epitaph of Simonides

Epitaph with Simonides' epigram
Epitaph with Simonides' epigram

Simonides composed a well-known epigram, which was engraved as an epitaph on a commemorative stone placed on top of the burial mound of the Spartans at Thermopylae. It is also the hill on which the last of them died.[91] The original stone has not been preserved. Instead the epitaph was engraved on a new stone erected in 1955. The text from Herodotus is:[91] Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (896x594, 145 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Battle of Thermopylae Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (896x594, 145 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Battle of Thermopylae Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or... Bold textil8jjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjpooSimonides of Ceos (ca. ... An epigram is a short poem with a clever twist at the end or a concise and witty statement. ... For other uses, see Epitaph (disambiguation). ...

Ὦ ξεῖν', ἀγγέλλειν Λακεδαιμονίοις ὅτι τῇδε
κείμεθα, τοῖς κείνων ῥήμασι πειθόμενοι.
Ō ksein', angellein Lakedaimoniois hoti tēide
keimetha tois keinōn rhēmasi peithomenoi.

An ancient alternative substitutes πειθόμενοι νομίμοις for ῥήμασι πειθόμενοι; i.e., substitutes "laws" for "sayings." The sayings are not personal but refer to official and binding phrases of some sort.[110]


The form of this ancient Greek poetry is an elegiac couplet. Some English translations are given in the table below. Elegiac couplets consist of alternating lines of dactylic hexameter and pentameter: two dactyls followed by a long syllable, a caesura, then two more dactyls followed by a long syllable. ...

Translation Notes
Go tell the Spartans, thou who passest by,
That here, obedient to their laws, we lie.[111]
William Lisle Bowles
Stranger, tell the Spartans that we behaved as they would wish us to, and are buried here.[112] William Golding
Stranger! To Sparta say, her faithful band
Here lie in death, remembering her command.[113]
Rev. Francis Hodgson
Stranger, report this word, we pray, to the Spartans, that lying
Here in this spot we remain, faithfully keeping their laws.[114]
George Campbell Macaulay
Stranger, bear this message to the Spartans,
that we lie here obedient to their laws.[115]
William Roger Paton
Go tell the Spartans, stranger passing by,
that here obedient to their laws we lie.[116]
Steven Pressfield
Go, stranger, and to Lacedaemon tell
That here, obeying her behests, we fell.[117]
George Rawlinson
Go, way-farer, bear news to Sparta's town
that here, their bidding done, we laid us down.[118]
Cyril E. Robinson
Go tell the Spartans, you who read:
We took their orders, and lie here dead.[119]
Aubrey de Sélincourt

John Ruskin expressed the importance of this ideal to Western civilization as follows:[120] William Lisle Bowles (September 24, 1762 - April 7, 1850) was an English poet and critic. ... Sir William Gerald Golding (19 September 1911 – 19 June 1993) was a British novelist, poet and Nobel Prize for Literature laureate best known for his novel Lord of the Flies. ... Steven Pressfield is an American author, predominatedly of military historical fiction set in classical antiquity. ... Canon George Rawlinson (23 November 1812 – 7 October 1902), was a 19th century English scholar and historian. ... Aubrey de Selincourt (Sélincourt) (1896-1962) was an English writer, classical scholar, and translator. ... Upper: Steel-plate engraving of Ruskin as a young man, made circa 1845, scanned from print made circa 1895. ... For alternative meanings for The West in the United States, see the U.S. West and American West. ...

Also obedience in its highest form is not obedience to a constant and compulsory law, but a persuaded or voluntary yielded obedience to an issued command .... His name who leads the armies of Heaven is "Faithful and True"... and all deeds which are done in alliance with these armies ... are essentially deeds of faith, which therefore ... is at once the source and the substance of all known deed, rightly so called ... as set forth in the last word of the noblest group of words ever, so far as I know, uttered by simple man concerning his practice, being the final testimony of the leaders of a great practical nation ...: [the epitaph in Greek].

Leonidas monument

Leonidas Monument.
Leonidas Monument.

Additionally, there is a modern monument at the site, called the "Leonidas Monument", in honor of the Spartan king. It features a bronze statue of Leonidas. A sign, under the statue, reads simply: "Μολών λαβέ" ("Come and get them!"). The metope below depicts battle scenes. The two marble statues on the left and the right of the monument represent, respectively, the river Eurotas and Mount Taygetos, famous landmarks of Sparta. Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 365 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1168 pixel, file size: 1. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 365 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1168 pixel, file size: 1. ... The words MOLON LABE (ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ) in Greek as they are inscribed on the marble of the modern era monument at Thermopylae. ... Evrotas river, just outside the city of Sparta The Eurotas or Evrotas (Greek: Ευρώτας) is a river in the Peloponnese in southern Greece. ... Taygetus or Taygetos (Greek: Ταΰγετος), also Taigetos is a mountain range of the Peloponnesus, Southern Greece, extending about 65 mi (100 km) north from the southern end of Cape Matapan in the Mani Peninsula. ... For modern day Sparta, see Sparti (municipality). ...

Thespians monument

Thespians' Monument.
Thespians' Monument.

In 1997, a second monument was officially unveiled by the Greek government, dedicated to the 700 Thespians who fought with the Spartans. The monument is made of marble and features a bronze statue depicting the god Eros, who was worshiped in ancient Thespiae. Under the statue, a sign reads "In memory of the seven hundred Thespians". Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1920 pixel, file size: 2. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (2560 × 1920 pixel, file size: 2. ... This article is about the Greek god Eros. ...


A plate, below the statue, explains its symbolism :

  • The headless male figure symbolizes the anonymous sacrifice of the 700 Thespians to their country.
  • The outstretched chest symbolizes the struggle, the gallantry, the strength, the bravery and the courage.
  • The open wing symbolizes the victory, the glory, the soul, the spirit and the freedom.
  • The broken wing symbolizes the voluntary sacrifice and death.
  • The naked body symbolizes Eros, the most important god of the ancient Thespians, the god of creation, beauty and life.

The monument to the Thespians is placed beside the one to the Spartans.


Images

Thermopylae in popular culture

The Battle of Thermopylae has been an icon of western civilization since the day it ended. This icon expresses itself in countless instances of adages, poetry and song, literature, films, television and video games. A more serious aspect has been its didactic use. The battle appears in many books and articles on military topics. The Battle of Thermopylae has been the topic of a large cultural inspiration, as it is perhaps the most famous last stand of all time. ... American cultural icons. ... For this articles equivalent regarding the East, see Eastern culture. ... An adage (IPA ), or adagium (Latin), is a short, but memorable saying, which holds some important fact of experience that is considered true by many people, or it has gained some credibility through its long use. ... This article is about the art form. ... This article is about the musical composition. ... For other uses, see Literature (disambiguation). ... This article is about motion pictures. ... This article is about computer and video games. ... The Didactic is facts based as opposed to the Dialectic which is feelings based. ... [1]#redirect Book ... An article is a stand-alone section of a larger written work. ...

Prior to the battle, the Hellenes remembered the Dorians, an ethnic distinction to which the Spartans belonged, as the conquerors and displacers of the Ionians in the Peloponnesus. After the battle, Spartan culture became an inspiration and object of emulation, a phenomenon known as Laconophilia. Sparta has long been the topic of cultural inspiration. ... This article or section should include material from Greeks According to Thucydides, Hellenes were the people of Hellas. ... This article or section should include material from Dorian invasion The Dorians were one of the ancient Hellenic (Greek) races. ... This article needs cleanup. ... The Ionians were one of the three main ancient Greek ethno-linguistic groups, linked by their use of the Ionic dialect of the Greek language. ... Peloponnesos (Greek: Πελοπόννησος, sometime Latinized as Peloponnesus or Anglicized as The Peloponnese) is a large peninsula in Greece, forming the part of the country south of the Isthmus of Corinth. ...


Notes

  1. ^ a b c d e Green, Peter (1996). The Greco-Persian Wars. University of California Press, page 140. ISBN 0520203135. 
  2. ^ Some Greeks must have been fatally wounded on the first few days of battle, as one cannot suppose pitched battles without casualties. Also Herodotus does not say how many Thebans died before their surrender was accepted. Although the numbers in Herodotus are not precise by today's standards, he presents them without his typical apologia that he heard them from someone, which may indicate that he had faith in them.
  3. ^ Herodotus VIII, 24
  4. ^ Bury, J. B.; Russell Meiggs (July 2000). A History of Greece to the Death of Alexander the Great, 4th Revised Edition, Palgrave Macmillan, page 271.  The 1913 edition (same page numbers) is downloadable, Google Books, at [1].
  5. ^ Bury (1913), page 295.
  6. ^ a b Eikenberry, Lt. Gen. Karl W. (Summer 1996). "Take No Casualties". Parameters: US Army War College Quarterly XXVI (2): pages 109-118. 
  7. ^ A discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of these historial terms may be found in Sekunda, Nick (2002). Marathon 490 Bc: The First Persian Invasion of Greece. Osprey Publishing, page 7. ISBN 1841760005. 
  8. ^ Herodotus VI, 48
  9. ^ As an example of a blandishment Hydarnes suggested to the heralds that were sent in compensation to the king that submission of the Spartans would be followed by governorships over the future Greek provinces. The heralds rejected the suggestion scornfully. Herodotus VII, 135.
  10. ^ Herodotus VII, 133. As the murder of heralds was against international law, the Spartans sent two of theirs to Xerxes for punishment, but he behaved "with true greatness of soul" and let them go, according to sections 134-137.
  11. ^ Herodotus VII, 32
  12. ^ Herodotus VII,145. He does not use the term "congress" or any ancient equivalent. He only says that they exchanged pledges and consulted together.
  13. ^ Herodotus, VII, 148
  14. ^ Herodotus VII, 161
  15. ^ Herodotus VII,173. An extensive presentation of the decisions that were made and Xerxes' passage through Thessaly can be found in Abbott, Jacob (1854). The history of Xerxes the great. Nathaniel Cooke, pages 110-113.  Downloadable Google Books.
  16. ^ Herodotus VII, 206 entire. The translation is Rawlinson's. The Godley translation can be found at [2]
  17. ^ The days of the battle cannot be known precisely nor is there much scholarly agreement. A summary of what is known of Carneia can be found in Burkert, Walter (1985). Greek Religion: Archaic and Classical. Blackwell Publishing, pages 234-236. 
  18. ^ Herodotus; George Rawlinson (Translator) (2005). The History of Herodotus: Polymnia (html). Greek Texts page 50. Greek-Texts.com & Greece Http Ltd.. Retrieved on 2007-10-18.
  19. ^ a b Herodotus VII.204
  20. ^ Herodotus VII, 205
  21. ^ Plutarch. Gorgo (html). Moralia: Apophthegmata Lacaenarum: as published in Vol. III of the Loeb Classical Library Edition, 1931. Bill Thayer. Retrieved on 2007-10-26. Paragraph 240E, Saying 6.
  22. ^ Herodotus VII, 101
  23. ^ Herodotus VII, 102
  24. ^ Herodotus VII, 103
  25. ^ Herodotus VII, 104
  26. ^ Herodotus VII, 207
  27. ^ Herodotus VII, 209
  28. ^ Plutarch. Leonidas, Son of Anaxandridas (html). Moralia: Apophthegmata Laconica: as published in Vol. III of the Loeb Classical Library Edition, 1931. Bill Thayer. Retrieved on 2007-10-26. Paragraph 225C, Saying 10.
  29. ^ Plutarch, Apophthegmata Laconica, Saying 11. pronounced [moˈlɔːn laˈbe]), this saying was taken by the Greek First Army Corps as their emblem.
  30. ^ Herodotus, VII, 226. "In the shade" was taken by the Hellenic Army XX Armored Division as their motto.
  31. ^ a b Herodotus VII, 210
  32. ^ Diodorus Siculus XI, 6
  33. ^ Herodotus VII, 208
  34. ^ a b c Diodorus Siculus XI, 7
  35. ^ a b Herodotus VII, 211
  36. ^ Herodotus VII, 212
  37. ^ a b c d Ctesias; Photius; Roger Pearse (Editor). Persica (html). Bibliotheca or Myriobyblon: Codex 72. The Tertullian Project. Retrieved on 2007-10-25.
  38. ^ Herodotus VII, 213
  39. ^ Tegopoulos, G.; A. Phytrakis (1988). Elliniko Lexico (Greek Dictionary). Armonia.  Word: Εφιάλτης.
  40. ^ Herodotus VII, 215
  41. ^ Herodotus VII, 217
  42. ^ a b Herodotus VII, 218
  43. ^ Herodotus VII, 219
  44. ^ Herodotus VII, 220
  45. ^ Herodotus VII, 222
  46. ^ Herodotus VII, 224
  47. ^ Herodotus, VII 233
  48. ^ a b c Herodotus, VII, 225
  49. ^ Crawford, Osbert Guy Stanhope (1955). Said and Done: The Autobiography of an Archaeologist. Weidenfeld and Nicolson, page 302. 
  50. ^ Herodotus VII, 238
  51. ^ See Herodotus VII,181
  52. ^ Herodotus VII, 35
  53. ^ Herodotus, VIII, 26
  54. ^ Pausanias Book III Ch. XIV Sect. 1
  55. ^ Herodotus IX, 10
  56. ^ a b Herodotus VII,176
  57. ^ Dore, Lyn (2001), “Once the War Is Over”, in Freeman, P.W.M. & Pollard, A., Fields of Conflict: Progress and Prospect in Battlefield Archaeology, David Brown Book Co., pp. pages 285-286, ISBN 9781841712499 . The article can be viewed at [3]
  58. ^ Herodotus VII, 89
  59. ^ Herodotus 90
  60. ^ a b c d e f Herodotus VII, 184
  61. ^ As the crew of a trireme consisted of 170 rowers, 30 marines, the imperial 30 were probably part of the 200.
  62. ^ But according to VII, 97 the 3000 included also 30-oared ships, light galleys and heavy horse-transports.
  63. ^ Only 46 are listed, the 47th name has been lost from VI, 76.
  64. ^ Herodotus VII, 61
  65. ^ Herodotus VII, 62
  66. ^ Herodotus VII, 63
  67. ^ Herodotus VII, 64
  68. ^ Herodotus VII, 65
  69. ^ Herodotus VII, 66
  70. ^ Herodotus VII, 67
  71. ^ Herodotus VII, 68
  72. ^ Herodotus VII, 69
  73. ^ Herodotus VII, 70
  74. ^ Herodotus VII, 71
  75. ^ Herodotus VII, 72
  76. ^ Herodotus VII, 73
  77. ^ Herodotus VII, 74
  78. ^ Herodotus, VII, 75
  79. ^ Herodotus VII, 77
  80. ^ Herodotus VII, 78
  81. ^ Herodotus VII, 79
  82. ^ Herodotus VII, 80
  83. ^ Herodotus VII, 60, but in VII, 184 he states that there were 700,100 footsoldiers.
  84. ^ Herodotus VII, 84
  85. ^ Herodotus VII, 85
  86. ^ Herodotus VII, 86
  87. ^ Herodotus VII, 87
  88. ^ The term "Asian" is Herodotus' but under that term he also includes Arabians and north Africans.
  89. ^ a b Herodotus VII, 185
  90. ^ Herodotus VII,186
  91. ^ a b c Herodotus VII, 228
  92. ^ Ctesias; J.H. Freese (Translator); Photius (Editor) (1996-2007). Excerpt 27 (html). Persica. Livius articles on ancient history. Retrieved on 2007-10-19.
  93. ^ Grote, George. A History of Greece: Part II: Chapter XXXVIII From the Battle of Marathon to the March of Xerxes Against Greece.  The page numbers depend on the edition; however, Grote often used top-of-page captions instead of subsections. The presentation on the size of Xerxes' army is to be found under "Muster of the Army of Xerxes."
  94. ^ Maurice, F. (1930). "The size of the army of Xerxes in the invasion of Greece 480 B.C.". Journal of Hellenic Studies 50: pages 210–235.  Most readers will not have free access to this article, but discussion of it can be found in nearly every modern book on the Battle of Thermopylae; for example, Bradford page 34, or Fischer, N.B.; Ilya Gershevitch; Ehsan Yarshster (Editors) (1993). The Cambridge History of Iran. Cambridge University Press, page 320. ISBN 0521200911. 
  95. ^ Herodotus VII, 21 "Was there a river ... which sufficed for his troops to drink?"
  96. ^ Dewald, Carolyn; John Marincola (2006). The Cambridge companion to Herodotus. Cambridge University Press, page 217. ISBN 052183001X. 
  97. ^ Stecchini (under External links below) reiterates some of the tangles of this complex question.
  98. ^ Hammond, N.G.L. (2000), “The Expedition of Xerxes: Persian Preparations and the Advance to Therma in Macedonia”, The Cambridge Ancient History: IV Persia, Greece and the Western Mediterranean, Cambridge University Press, pp. 532-534, ISBN 0521228042 
  99. ^ a b de Souza, Philip (2003). The Greek and Persian Wars, 499-386 BC. Osprey Publishing, page 41. ISBN 1-84176-358-6. 
  100. ^ Herodotus, VII, 202, 203.
  101. ^ Diodorus Siculus, book XI, 4
  102. ^ Herodotus VIII, 25
  103. ^ Herodotus VII, 202
  104. ^ Herodotus VII, 228
  105. ^ The 900 appear in most modern books often with the complaint that history has neglected them and typically without any attempt to prove their existence, or else the concept is attributed to recent scholarship. It is not in fact recent: Macan, Reginald Walter (1908). Herodotus: The Seventh, Eighth & Ninth Books with Introduction and Commentary: Commentary on Herodotus, Histories, book 8, chapter 25 (html). The Perseus Digital Library (Tufts University). Retrieved on 2007-10-24. Macan in presenting the argument (as "less probably") cites no predecessor but nowhere implies there is not one. Macan's more probable view, for which he cites prior references, is that the 900 are Perioeci; however, if they are, there would seem to be a duplication with the other Lacedaemonians mentioned by Diodorus.
  106. ^ Pausanias Book X, Ch. xx, Sect. 2
  107. ^ For example, Bradford page 105 and Bury (1913) page 272.
  108. ^ John Boardman book: The Cambridge Ancient History. 1988. Page 532. ISBN 0521228042.
  109. ^ P. V. N. Myers book: A General History For Colleges And High Schools. 2004. Page 107. ISBN 1419101331.
  110. ^ Macan, Reginald Walter. Herodotus: The Seventh, Eighth & Ninth Books with Introduction and Commentary: Commentary on Herodotus, Histories, book 7, chapter 228 (html) section 8. The Perseus Digital Library (Tufts University). Retrieved on 2007-10-18.
  111. ^ Strachey, Edward (February, 1871). "The Soldiers's Duty". The Contemporary Review XVI: pages 480-485. London: Strahan & Co.  Page 481. Downloadable Google Books.
  112. ^ Golding, William (2002). The Hot Gates (html). The Sparta pages. Retrieved on 2007-10-20. Excerpt from the book, The Hot Gates.
  113. ^ Merivale, J.K. (1833). From the Greek Anthology by the Late Rev. Robert Bland, and Others: A New Edition: Comprising the Fragments of Early Lyric Poetry, With Specimens of All the Poets Included in Meleager's Garland. Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, Green, and Longman; and John Murray, page 64.  Downloadable Google Books.
  114. ^ Campbell, George (1889). The History of Herodotus: Translated into English: Vol. II. MacMillan and Co., Limited, page 220.  Downloadable Google Books.
  115. ^ Paton, W.R. (Editor and Translator) (1918). The Greek Anthology. W. Heineman, page 139. 
  116. ^ Pressfield, Steven (1998). Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae. Doubleday, page 384. ISBN 0385492910. 
  117. ^ Herodotus; George Rawlinson (Translator) (2005). The History of Herodotus: Polymnia. Greek Texts page 51. Greek-Texts.com & Greece Http Ltd.. Retrieved on 2007-10-19.
  118. ^ Robinson, C.E. (2007). Hellas - A Short History of Ancient Greece. Pantheon Books, page 65. ISBN 1406766992.  The translation dates to 1948.
  119. ^ Herodotus; John M. Marincola (Contributor); Aubrey de Sélincourt (Translator) (2003). The Histories. penguin group (usa), page 495. ISBN 9780140449082.  The translation dates to 1954.
  120. ^ Ruskin, John (1894), “Part VIII: Of Ideas of Relation - I. of Invention Formal: Chapter I: The Law of Help”, The Complete Works: Modern Painters: Volume the Fifth, New York: Bryan, Taylor and Company . Page 212.

Peter Green (born 1924) is a British classical scholar noted for his Alexander to Actium, a general account of the Hellenistic Age, and other works. ... University of California Press, also known as UC Press, is a publishing house associated with the University of California that engages in academic publishing. ... Walter Burkert (born Neuendettelsau (Bavaria), February 2, 1931), the most eminent living scholar of Greek myth and cult, is an emeritus professor of classics at the University of Zurich, Switzerland who has also taught in the United Kingdom and the United States. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ... Canon George Rawlinson (23 November 1812 – 7 October 1902), was a 19th century English scholar and historian. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 291st day of the year (292nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Mestrius Plutarchus (Greek: Πλούταρχος; 46 - 127), better known in English as Plutarch, was a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist. ... External links The Moralia (loosely translatable as Matters relating to customs and mores) of Plutarch is an eclectic collection of 78 essays and transcribed speeches, which includes On the Fortune or the Virtue of Alexander the Great — an important adjunct to his Life of the great general — On the Worship... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 299th day of the year (300th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Mestrius Plutarchus (Greek: Πλούταρχος; 46 - 127), better known in English as Plutarch, was a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist. ... External links The Moralia (loosely translatable as Matters relating to customs and mores) of Plutarch is an eclectic collection of 78 essays and transcribed speeches, which includes On the Fortune or the Virtue of Alexander the Great — an important adjunct to his Life of the great general — On the Worship... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 299th day of the year (300th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Hellenic Army - I Army Corps // The motto at the top of the emblem, Μολών Λαβέ, means Come and take them. ... Hellenic Army - XX Armored Division // Structure of the 20th Armoured Division 20th Armoured Division (XX ΤΘΜ) in Kavala, Macedonia Division Artillery Command and units (ΔΠΒ/ΧΧ ΤΘΜ) 21st Armored Brigade (XXI ΤΘΤ Ταξιαρχία Ιππικού Πίνδος) in Komotini, Thrace HQ Company (ΙΣΤ) Armored Battalion (21 EMA) Leopard 2A6HEL Armored Battalion (24 EMA) Leopard 2A6HEL Mechanized Infantry Battalion (644 M/K... Diodorus Siculus (c. ... Ctesias of Cnidus (in Caria) (Greek ), was a Greek physician and historian, who flourished in the 5th century BC. In early life he was physician to Artaxerxes Mnemon, whom he accompanied in 401 BC on his expedition against his brother Cyrus the Younger. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 298th day of the year (299th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Ctesias of Cnidus (in Caria) (Greek ), was a Greek physician and historian, who flourished in the 5th century BC. In early life he was physician to Artaxerxes Mnemon, whom he accompanied in 401 BC on his expedition against his brother Cyrus the Younger. ... Photius (b. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 292nd day of the year (293rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... George Grote George Grote (November 17, 1794 - June 18, 1871) was an English classical historian. ... Major-General Sir John Frederick Maurice (1841-1912) was an English soldier, born in London. ... Xerxes I of Persia (sometimes known as Xerxes the Great, in old Persian, 𐎧𐏁𐎹𐎠𐎼𐏁𐎠[2]) was a king of Persia (reigned 486–465 BC) of the Achaemenid dynasty. ... The Journal of Hellenic Studies or JHS is a bound journal containing archaeological articles regarding Hellenic Studies and reviews of recent books of importance to Hellenic studies. ... Nicholas Geoffrey Lemprière Hammond (born November 15 1907; died March 24 2001) was a British scholar of ancient Greece of great accomplishment and an operative for the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) in occupied Greece during World War Two. ... Diodorus Siculus (c. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 297th day of the year (298th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Former Spartan slaves, now free (possibly from escape). ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 291st day of the year (292nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Edward Strachey, 1st Baron Strachie PC (30 October 1858–25 July 1936), known as Sir Edward Strachey, 4th Baronet, from 1901 to 1911, was a British Liberal politician. ... Sir William Gerald Golding (19 September 1911 – 19 June 1993) was a British novelist, poet and Nobel Prize for Literature laureate best known for his novel Lord of the Flies. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 293rd day of the year (294th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Hot Gates is the title of a collection by William Golding, author of Lord of the Flies. ... Steven Pressfield is an American author, predominatedly of military historical fiction set in classical antiquity. ... Gates of Fire is a 1998 novel by Steven Pressfield that recounts the Battle of Thermopylae through Xeones, a Spartan squire and the lone survivor of the battle. ... Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (c. ... Canon George Rawlinson (23 November 1812 – 7 October 1902), was a 19th century English scholar and historian. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 292nd day of the year (293rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Aubrey de Selincourt (Sélincourt) (1896-1962) was an English writer, classical scholar, and translator. ... Upper: Steel-plate engraving of Ruskin as a young man, made circa 1845, scanned from print made circa 1895. ...

Further reading

  • Barkworth, Peter R. (1993). "The Organization of Xerxes' Army". Iranica Antiqua XXVII: pages 149-167. 
  • Pressfield, Steven (1998). Gates of Fire. ISBN 0385492510. 
  • Morris, Ian Macgregor (2000). "To Make a New Thermopylae: Hellenism, Greek Liberation, and the Battle of Thermopylae". Greece & Rome 47 (2): pages 211–230. 
  • Bradford, Ernle (2004). Thermopylae: The Battle for the West. Da Capo Press. ISBN 0306813602. 
  • Cartledge, Paul (2006). Thermopylae: The Battle That Changed the World. Woodstock, New York: The Overlook Press. ISBN 1585675660. 
  • Matthews, Rupert (2006). The Battle of Thermopylae: A Campaign in Context. Stroud, Gloucestershire, UK: Tempus Publishing. ISBN 1862273251. 
  • Holland, Tom (2006). 'Persian Fire: The First World Empire and the Battle for the West'. ISBN 0385513119. 

Gates of Fire is a 1998 novel by Steven Pressfield that recounts the Battle of Thermopylae through Xeones, a Spartan squire and the lone survivor of the battle. ...

See also

Aristodemus was a Spartan warrior, one of the famous Three Hundred sent to the Battle of Thermopylae. ... Combatants Macedonian Empire Persia Commanders Alexander the Great Ariobarzan † Strength 17,000[1][2] 700[1] Casualties Thousands[1] 700[1] The Battle of the Persian Gate was fought northeast of todays Yasuj in Iran between a group of Persian patriots led by Ariobarzan against the large invading Macedonian... Neolithic Europe The outcomes of battles have often been assessed by historians in respect to their influence on the development of polities, states or cultures. ... The words MOLON LABE (ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ) in Greek as they are inscribed on the marble of the modern era monument at Thermopylae. ... Persia redirects here. ... A Spartan warrior, one of the Three Hundred sent to the Battle of Thermopylae. ... “Military history of Sparta” redirects here. ... Belligerents 36th Sikhs of British Indian Army alliance of Afridis and Orakzais Commanders Havildar Ishar Singh  â€  unknown Strength 21[1] 10,000[2][3] Casualties and losses 21 (100%)[1] 180[4] to 600[5][6] The Battle of Saragarhi was fought during the Tirah Campaign on 12 September 1897...

External links

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Coordinates: 38°47′60″N, 22°31′60″E Ctesias of Cnidus (in Caria) (Greek ), was a Greek physician and historian, who flourished in the 5th century BC. In early life he was physician to Artaxerxes Mnemon, whom he accompanied in 401 BC on his expedition against his brother Cyrus the Younger. ... Photius (b. ... The Bibliotheca was the 9th century work of Byzantine Patriarch Photius, composed of 279 reviews of books which he had read. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 352nd day of the year (353rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Jona Lendering is a Dutch historian and the author of books on antiquity, Dutch history and modern management. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 292nd day of the year (293rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Jona Lendering is a Dutch historian and the author of books on antiquity, Dutch history and modern management. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 292nd day of the year (293rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Livio Catullo Stecchini was a historian of science, a teaching professor (Harvard PhD), a scholar of ancient weights and measures, (the science of metrology) and of the history of cartography in antiquity. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 292nd day of the year (293rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 181st day of the year (182nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically), Eckert VI projection; large version (pdf, 1. ...



  Results from FactBites:
 
Battle of Thermopylae - MSN Encarta (802 words)
In the Battle of Thermopylae (as detailed almost entirely by Herodotus), which occurred in 480 BC, an alliance of Greek city-states fought the invading Persian Empire at the pass...
Battle of Thermopylae, battle fought between the Greeks and the Persians at Thermopylae, in northern Greece, in 480 bc.
Xerxes’ campaign was motivated partly by the desire to avenge the Greeks’ defeat of the Persians at the Battle of Marathon in 490 bc, and partly by ambition for imperial expansion.
Battle of Thermopylae : Story, Photos - The place (626 words)
It is primarily known for the Battle of Thermopylae in 480 BC in which an overmatched Greek force held off advancing Persians under Xerxes, and the term since has been used to reference heroic resistance against a more powerful enemy.
Thermopylae is primarily known for the battle that took place there in 480 BC, in which an overmatched combined Greek force of approximately 4,000 held off advancing Persians under Xerxes, and the term since has been used to reference heroic resistance against a more powerful enemy.
Such was the fame of Thermopylae that the sabotage of the Gorgopotamos bridge in 1942 was referred in German documents of the era as "the recent sabotage near Thermopylae".
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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