Greco- Persian WarsCauses ,Consequences , Results
How Do We Know?
Remember, history is what is remembered and written down, along with the bias of the writer.
Herodotus - primary sourceFather of HistoryIonian GreekEye-witness & interviewed Eye-witnessesWrote The Persian Wars
How Do We Know?
These are the inquiries (the Greek word is histories) of Herodotus of Halikarnassos, which he sets down so that he can preserve the memory of what these men have done, and ensure that the wondrous achievements of the Greeks and barbarians (the Persians) do not lose their deserved fame, and also to record why we went to war with each other. -Herodotus
Persian Empire Expands
And the Persians?
Conquered the BabyloniansFreed the Jews and allowed them to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the temple to Yahweh Cyrus the Great ---> Jews called him the Messiah or Gods anointed oneEmpire ---> largest to date under Darius, from Egypt, Asia Minor to IndiaSatraps & Satrapies
Persian Empire Expands
People to knowGREEKSPERSIANS-Leonidas-Cyrus the Great-Pericles -Darius*-Themistocles -Xerxes*
Key Battles to Know (theres 4)B. of Marathon B. of ThermopylaeB. of SalamisB. of PlataeaPersian War - the Greeks vs. the Persians
The Persian War
SO WHAT? Who cares?
Whats at stake?
JUST THE FUTURE OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION!
Background to the ConflictNo Persian records.After collapse of Mycenaean civilization , many Greeks fled to Ionia. These Greek colonies were more or less united under Lydian rule. On the eve of the Greco-Persian wars, Ionian population had become discontented and rebellious Meanwhile in Athens, Cleisthenic democracy insecure.Fear of treason, tyranny, Spartans, and neighbors. So Cleisthenes asks for alliance with Persia. Persians ask for earth and water in return.
Ionia & the Ionian Greeks
Northern Greece - Thrace & Macedonia
2nd Invasion - 490 B.C.
Cyrus II and the Foundation Between 550 and 530 BC Cyrus II, establishes a vast empireFirst he incorporates Media and Persia, then the Assyrian Empire, and then many lands on the east of IranHe establishes a rule based on local diversity, respects local religions and customsHis son and heir Cambyses II conquered Egypt.
The Rise of Achaemenid Persia
Ionian Revolt, 499-493Cyrus sent messages to the Ionians demanding revolt against Lydian rule. Ionians refused. Cyrus invadesPhocea 1st. Ionian Greeks hard to rule. So Persia establishes a tyrant in each Ionian city.The tyranny declining in Greece. Darius the Great more invasive than Cyrus. Ionians captured, and burnt Sardis. On their return home, they were followed by Persian troops, and crushed at the Battle of Ephesus
Ionian Revolt, 499-493Miletus rebels. Athens supports them with 20 ships. Persians defeat them at Battle of Lade (494) Besieged, captured, and enslaved Miletians. Why does Athens get involved?They are IoniansPersia has been unfriendlyAthens dependent on trade (especially , grain trade)GloryAsia Minor returned to Persian control. But Darius vowed to punish Athens for supporting revoltsIn 492, Darius sent ambassadors to major Greek cities, demanding their submission. Does not go to Athens or Sparta.
Darius I (the housekeeper)Darius was a pretender, who prevailed after a bloody succession war. He expanded the empire to the East, and tried to incorporate Europe, including GreeceHis European campaigns were mostly a failureHe organized the Empire, cut new coins (darics), and introduced new laws. His generals were defeated by the Athenians at Marathon.
Overall :First Invasion of Greece: MotivationsPunish the rebelsRestore Hippeas (he would be a Persian satrap)Conquer and tax GreeceControl Athenian trade Glory
The Battle of Marathon (490 BC)The first Persian invasion primarily targeted Athens. Spartan help was asked and promised but delayed, due to religious observance. The Athenians alone defeated the invading force with the brilliant tactics of general Miltiades.When the Spartans arrived, they inspected the monument, praised the Athenians and left.
First Invasion of Greece: Battle of MarathonPersian fleet headed down coast of Attica, landing at bay of Marathon, 26 miles from Athens (Phydippedes runs to Athens to ask for help3hrs. Then died.)Sparta amidst a religious ceremony. Promised help laterHerodotus records that 6,400 Persian bodies were counted on the battlefield; Athenians lost only 192 men. Spartans show up the next day!Significance Persians CAN be beatenVictory for democracy and freedomPride and gloryNo victory at Marathon, no Socrates, Sophocles, EurpidesThe Marathonomachai saved Western Civ (?)War accomplishes great things (?)
-Who is Victorious? Who has NIKE?
Rise of Themistocles
General (strategos) of his tribe in 490 BCE; commanded center of Athenian army at MarathonElected archon in 493/92 BCE Rival politicians ostracized: Miltiades, Hipparchus, Megacles the Alcmaeonid, Xanthippus (father of Pericles), Aristides
Rise of Themistocles: Athenian Navy DebateDebate in Athenian AssemblyNew wealth from Larium minesAristides: strengthen hoplite army (zeugitai)Themistocles: strengthen navy (thetes)Build port of Piraeus Overture to Thetes Aristides ostracized in 482 BCENew political importance of thetes as rowers
Themistocles and Athenian Naval Power
Before this, Themistocles judgment had proved the best at an important moment; it was when the commonality of Athens had received great sums that came to them from the mines at Laurium, and they were disposed to share them out, with each citizen getting ten drachmas apiece. It was then that Themistocles persuaded the Athenians to abandon this distribution and make instead, with this money, two hundred ships for the war, he said, naming the war against the Aeginetans. It was indeed their engagement in this war, just then, that saved Greece, for it compelled the Athenians to become men of the sea. These ships were not used for the purpose for which they were built, but they were there for Greece at the moment of need.
Rise of Themistocles: Foresight
Now the rest of his countrymen thought that the defeat of the barbarians at Marathon was the end of the war; but Themistocles thought it to be only the beginning of greater contests, and for these he anointed himself, as it were, to be the champion of all Greece, and put his polis into training, because, while it was yet far off, he expected the evil that was to come.
- Plutarch, Life of Themistocles, 3.4
Athenian Trireme120 ft. x 15 ft.170 rowersFast and agileRamming tactics
Xerxes 486: Darius dies: Xerxes becomes king484: Egypt revoltsAfter the suppression of the revolt Xerxes prepares for a campaign against Greece. 480: Xerxes personally leads an invasion of Greece
Second Persian Invasion (480-479 BCE)Xerxes constructs an armada a boat-bridge spanning Hellespont481, Greek League (Hellenic League)Defensive Alliance31 Greek states Led by Sparta and Athens
The Fictional Xerxes
The real XerxesA sophisticated, fun-loving womanizer, better suited for the luxuries of the court than the battlefield. Xerxes inherited the Greek campaign from his father. During his reign, a new imperial capital was built, inteded to glorify Persian might
Persepolis: The Great Palace of Xerxes
The Invasion of Xerxes
The Battlefield of Thermopylae
Battle of Thermopylae, 480Xerxes's arrived during Olympic Games. For Spartans, warfare during Olympics was sacrilegious. But Spartans considered the threat so grave that they dispatched King Leonidas I with his personal bodyguards (The Hippeis) of 300 men + Allied forces. Persian contingents forced to attack Greek phalanx head onPass at Thermopylae was opened to the Persian army according to Herodotus, at the cost to the Persians of up to 20,000 fatalitiesXerxes beheads and impales corpse of Leonidas!
The Battle of Thermopylae480: Although strategically it was a hopeless undertaking, the stand of king Leonidas and his personal guard at Thermopylae, encourages the fighting Greeks.The Athenians, with an equal spirit of bravery, retreat and allow the city to be burnt to the ground. This is the limit of Xerxes successes in Greece
Battle of Thermopylae, 480Following Thermopylae, the Persian army burned and sacked the Boeotian cities which had not submitted to the PersiansArguably most famous battle in European ancient history. Greeks lauded for their performance in battle. Thermopylae as inspiration for the ages. Military defeat; moral victory Thermopylae was a Pyrrhic victory for Persians
Thermopylae (August, 480 BCE)
Battle at Salamis (September, 480 BCE)Victory at Thermopylae = Boeotia fell to Xerxes; left Attica open to invasionAthens evacuated, with the aid of Allied fleet, to Salamis. Athens fell to PersiansThe Persians had now captured much of Greece. But needed to capture navy. Destruction of some of Persian fleet in battle and storm at ArtemisiumPeloponnesians fortify Isthmus of Corinth Eurybiades presented the proposition that anyone who pleased should declare where,