Created on May 3, 2023
More creations to inspire you
The Persians had a highly trained army called the Ten Thousand Immortals. They were called Immortals because as soon as one soldier died in combat, another immediately replaced him.
- From 499 to 479 BCE the Persian Empire was the enemy of Athens and Sparta.
- At the time, Persia was the largest empire in the world, stretching from Asia Minor to India, and the Caspian Sea to Egypt and Arabia.
- The Persian Empire began in the modern day country of Iran
- They built their empire by conquering neighboring civilizations.
- The Persians had the best archers in the world.
- An archer is a person who shoots with a bow and arrow. These archers made Persia difficult to defeat.
- The Persians conquered Asia Minor, Syria and Egypt. They also conquered areas of India, Europe and Mesopotamia
- One of the greatest Persian Kings, King Darius, divided the empire into 20 parts.
- Each part was known as a Satrap.
- Satraps made it easier to collect taxes.
- Each satrap had its own government leaders.
- When an area was conquered, they were allowed to keep their own customs and religion.
- In 546 BCE the Persians conquered the Greek settlement of Ionia. It is located in Asia Minor.
- The Persians:
- Took over the Ionian’s harbor and farmland
- Forced the Ionians to pay tribute.
- A tribute is a payment made from one weaker group to another stronger group.
- Forced the Ionians to become soldiers in the Persian army
- Ionians knew they needed help defeating the Persians.
- They asked other Greek city-states for help
- Athens sent a fleet of ships to help but didn't stay long
- The Ionians had to fight alone and were defeated by the Persians in 493 BCE
- The Persians punished the Ionians for rebelling by destroying their city names Miletus. They also sold some people into slavery
The Battle of Marathon
- Darius asked for tribute from the Greek city states, they said no
- Threw his Messengers into pits and wells
- 490 BCE- Darius sent soldiers across the Aegean Sea to Greece
- Infantry- foot soldiers
- Cavalry- soldiers on horseback
- They set up on the plain of Marathon
- Athens sent a runner named Pheidippides to Sparta
- Pheidippides ran for two days
- Sparta was celebrating a religious festival
- Spartans wouldn't leave immediately
- Athens and allies went against the Persians alone
- The Greeks won with a surprise tactic
- They lined up their men and advanced the soldiers in the middle and attacked from the sides as well
- Athens were able to get back to Greece and defend it from the Persians
- King Xerxes, son of Darius, attacked Greece again.
- He put together a large army (Immortals)
- He needed to cross Hellespont, a narrow waterway between Europe and Asia
- His army made two bridges with boats, wooden planks and ropes.
- They attacked a number of Greek city-states
- The Spartans and the Athenians joined together to fight
- The Athenians fought on water
- The Spartans fought on land
- The Spartans biggest fight took place at Thermopylae
- There position forced the Persians to travel through a narrow mountain pass.
- Leonidas was the Spartan commander. The Spartan army had 6,000 - 7,000 soldiers
- A traitors showed the Persians a passage through the mountains
- Leonidas commanded his troops to escape
- 300 soldiers stayed to fight, all 300 were killed but their bravery is an important Greek legend.
The Battle of Salamis
- After Thermopylae the citizens of Athens fled to nearby islands
- A small army stayed in Athens as defense
- Xerxes defeated Athens and burned it
- Themistocles, a navy leader from Athens, wanted to defeat the Persians on boats in a narrow channels between the mainland and islands
- This would make it hard to move ships around
- Themistocles lied and told Xerxes he and his troops wanted to join the Persians
- Xerxes entered the channel near the island of Salamis and the Greek boats pretended to retreat
- The Greeks surrounded the Persians and used wooden rams to destroy 300 Persian ships.
The Battle of Plataea
- Xerxes and some soldiers fled to Hellespont but left the rest of his army in Greece
- He ordered his soldiers to attack again in the spring
- The Greek city-states joined together and created an army of of 80,000 Greeks.
- In 479 BCE they defeated the Persian army outside a town called Plataea.
- The Persian army stopped attacking Greece.
- This defeat stopped the Persian army from taking over all of Europe.
- Thousands of Greeks died in the Greco-Persian Wars
- Athens was destroyed, but would rebuild.