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The Persian Empire. By Monisha D., Caitlin D., and Rachel S.

Persian Empire Presentation

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This is our presentation on the Persian Empire. It is a product of the work and effort of Monisha, Caitlin, and Rachel of team 8 in global class period 1.

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Page 1: Persian Empire Presentation

The Persian Empire.

By Monisha D., Caitlin D., and Rachel S.

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Table of Contents.

1) Thesis Statement2) Time Line3) Background and Geography4 ) Cyrus5) Belief System6) Cambyses

7) Darius I8) Empire Organization9) Xerxes I10) War Tactics11) The Persian Empire Falls12) Works Cited.

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Thesis Statement.

The Persian Empire succeeded through the strength of some leaders and failed through the reign of others until it ultimately ended as quickly as it had come about.

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Time Line.

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Background and Geography.Until the 6th century BC, the Persian lived in modern day Iran.

Some were settled while others were nomadic.

The land was mountainous and there were no harbors.

This resulted in tribes rather than a united group.

The tribes of Persia were under the control of Media.When Zoroastrianism came about in 650 BC, Persia would never be the same.

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Cyrus.Cyrus I ruled from 559 to 530 BC.He aspired to conquer the entire known world, believing it was his religious duty to do so.

This was an idea that was revolutionary for its time and ultimately sparked the dawn of the greatest empire the world had ever known.

He became the chief of the Persian tribe in 559 BC.His army was able to conquer Persia and Media in 554 BC.

He had killed King Astyages of Media in 550 BC.

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Cyrus [cont’d].Cyrus had created a strong army with a unique militaristic style that emphasized strength. He also invented a certain soldier attire that would be used throughout most of the history of the Persian Empire.He expanded the empire further to the surrounding regions of Lydia, Asia Minor, and Babylon.

He was able to capture Sardis, capitol of Lydia, after inflicting a two week siege.In Babylon, Cyrus freed the Jews, believing that their god, Yahweh, was an ally of Ahura Mazda.

He then died in battle in 529 BC.

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Belief System.Zoroaster was the founder of Zoroastrianism at around 600 BC.

This was a dualistic religion. Ahura Mazda was god of light and good, and Ahriman was god of dark and evil.

At the end of time, people would be judged by which side they were on.

The good would go to Heaven, the bad would go to Hell.

Cyrus believed it was his religious duty to take over the world and help Ahura Mazda to prevail.

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Belief System [cont’d].

This is what many find controversial. By conquering other countries, he was diminishing the beliefs of Ahura Mazda. This is one of the reasons why he was so diligent about tolerance. It gave him an outlet to prove he was on the side of good.

Cyrus also had the belief of religious and cultural tolerance.

He treated those he conquered with respect and allowed them many freedoms.Cyrus believed in the mentality of unity, not just its physicality.He believed that through learning acceptance of others, his empire would feel united. They would feel that they belonged not just because they were conquered.

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Cambyses.Cambyses was the son of Cyrus but his ruling tactics were much different, such as his tolerance of other customs and religions. He ruled from 530 B.C. to 522 B.C. He added Egypt.

Ridiculed the Egyptian religionOrdered for the images of the Egyptian gods to be burned.

Died in 522 BC.Revolts broke out.

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Darius I.Throughout the reign of Darius I, many lands were conquered and the empire was able to prosper with his brilliant organization. Darius was the successor of CambysesHe ruled from 522 to 486 BC.Moved empire eastward to Afghanistan and India, increasing the empire’s size to 2,500 miles long.He was originally a body guard for the king.The Ten Thousand Immortals.

They were a group of Persian soldiers. This group helped bring Darius to power.

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Darius I [cont’d.]Darius was accepting of other cultures and beliefs.

This idea of tolerance was prominent in holding the Persian Empire together.

He was able to conquer Asia Minor in 495 BC after the inhabitants lost interest in fighting them off.Set out to control Greece.

In 490 BC, the Persians attacked Athens. Battle of Marathon.

This battle took place in 490 BC at Marathon in Attica. The Athenians won with the help of an brilliant former Persian soldier, Miltiades.

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Empire Organization.Darius established Persepolis, the capitol, in 518 BC.Divided empire into 20 provinces.

Each province was ruled by a governor called a satrap, assigned a tax collect, and an army leader.People were allowed to stay with their original culture.They had their own set of laws and often spoke their own language

“The Eyes and the Ears of the King” were officials hired to make sure the satraps were doing their jobs.

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Empire Organization [cont’d].

Established road system.The Royal Road spanned 1,677 miles from Susa in Persia to Sardis in modern day Turkey. It helped to increase trade and convenient travel.Darius would often move to and from various royal capitols along the Royal Road.The Greek historian, Herodotus said "There is nothing in the world that travels faster than these Persian couriers.”

Established currency. The idea of gold and silver coins came from Lydia.Promoted a barter economy.

Darius looked more towards the physical aspects of unity.

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Xerxes I.Xerxes was a powerful king of the Persian Empire. He was focused on conquering the city states of Greece during his reign as king.

Xerxes was the son of Darius and he ruled from 486 BC to 465 BC.

Xerxes devoted his reign to attempting to conquering Greece.

Greece was considered Persia’s main threat.

Xerxes crossed the Hellespont with his army and then ordered a bridge to be built, which was destroyed in a storm.

As a result, Xerxes is said to have crossed the river by chariot on a bridge of boats.

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Xerxes I [Cont’d].In 480 BC, Xerxes led his sea forces to the victory in defeating Sparta in the Battle of Thermopylae.

They were even able to sack Athens. The Greeks won against the Persian Navy in 479 BC in the straits of Salamis.When rebellion broke out in Babylon, however, Xerxes rushed abate the issue.

The army left behind was defeated in 479 BC at the battle of Plataea.

Greece had officially defeated the Persian Empire.Xerxes was assassinated in 465 BC.

The assassin is believed to have been one of his generals.

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War Tactics.The Persian Empire was very advanced when it came to warfare. They spent a lot of time fighting for new territory and were involved in a number of epic battles against other civilizations.Cyrus.

His militaristic style was effective and humane, for he was against looting and burning. His soldiers were dressed in leather pants and thick felt boots. They rode mountain ponies and were equipped with bows and arrows.His kindness was solidified when in Babylon welcomed his armies in 539 BC.

Cambyses.He ruled with a violent and outrageous style. His goal was to conquer and create fear amongst his subjects. This did not work out well.

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War Tactics [Cont’d].Darius.

He had established the elite army called Ten Thousand Immortals.

It was believed that their numbers never dropped below 10,000 soldiers because it was continuously replenished. This is not accurate.

He divided the army up into sections, the most important being the cavalry and the navy.Darius failed to conquer Greece. This was something he was determined to do as a result of a conflict with Greece in 520 BC in Ionia.

Xerxes.He followed Darius’s organization of the army. He believed that having more soldiers allowed for fewer weapons. This proved to be his downfall in Greece.

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Important Battles.The Battle of Marathon.

After Darius and his army crossed the Hellespont, they were able to conquer Thrace.The Greek invasion was held off two years after the Persian fleet was destroyed in a storm.In 494 BC, the Greeks and Persians battled on the Plain of Marathon.It is believed that a former Persian soldier, Militiades, was on the side of the Athenians, helping the 10,000 heavily armed Greeks to defeat the 25,000 lightly armed Persians.

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Important battles [Cont’d.]The legendary Battle of Thermopylae.

It is believed that the Persians had 200,000 men on land and 1,000 on ships. Sparta was only able to send 300 men due to a religious festival taking place.King Leonidas of Sparta tried to even out the numbers by fighting in a narrow pass called the Hot Gates in Thermopylae in the northeastern coast of Greece.

They were aided by the help of soldiers from other city-states.

At first, the Spartans stood up well to the lightly armed Persians. However, Xerxes found out about the Hot Gates.The other soldiers abandoned the battle, but the 300 Spartans remained. Though they fought bravely, all 300 were killed.

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The Persian Empire Falls.After Xerxes I’s assassination, the Persian Empire began to fall.

This was largely due to the fact that the defeat in Greece damaged the Persian spirit to rule.Xerxes was succeeded by a series of incompetent rulers who only reigned for short periods at a time.The successors were almost too determined to succeed and make their imprint on Persian history. This obsession resulted in poor leadership, which in turn, resulted in the end to the empire.

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The Persian Empire Falls [cont’d].

Alexander III, also known as Alexander The Great had emerged with immense power in Macedon.

He ruled from 336 to 323 BC and had been commissioned by his father to fight Persia.

At the time, Darius III did not see Alexander as a threat, and ordered he be brought to Susa.

He defeated the Persian invaders who tried to seize him,

In 331 BC, he crossed the Euphrates into Mesopotamia.In 330 BC, he arrived in Babylon.

Thus began the infamous Roman and Greek occupation of the region between Tigris and Euphrates.

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Works Cited."Alexander the Great." Science and Its Times, Vol. 1: 2000 B.C. - 700 A.D.. Gale

Group, 2001. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Gale, 2008. <http://galenet.galegroup.com/servlet/BioRC>

Allen, Lindsay. The Persian Empire. New York: University of Chicago P, 2005.The Battle of Marathon. Digital image. Heritage History. 2007. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.heritage-history.com/www/heritage.php?r_menu=off&dir=wars&filename=wars_grecopersian.php>."The Battle of Thermopylae." thehistorychannel.co.uk. 2004. The History Channel. 24 Nov 2008


Beck, Roger, Linda Black, Larry s. Krieger, Phillip Naylor, Dahia Shabaka. “World History: Patterns of Interaction.” McDougal Littell. 1999.

Berrigan, Joseph. Battle of Thermpolyae. Digital image. Ancient Mesopotamia. 11 June 2008. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://joseph_berrigan.tripod.com/ancientbabylon/id28.html>.

Cliche Musees Nationaux, Paris. Two of the Ten Thousand Immortals [Glazed bricks from the Palace of Artaxerxes at Susa, Achaemenian period (539 ミ 330 BC)]. Digital image. Britannica Encyclopedia. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.britannica.com/ebchecked/topic-art/587087/7745/two-of-the-ten-thousand-immortals-glazed- bricks-from-the>.Croft, Chris. “Persians.” World History. 15 November 2008.

<http://home.cfl.rr.com/crossland/AncientCivilizations/Middle_East_Civilizations/Persians/persians.html>. Darius I [Portrait Of Darius From Persepolis]. Digital image. Ancient Web. 2008. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.ancientweb.org/persia/>.“Darius I.” 1959. Facts on File. New York Public Library. 12 November 2008.

<http://www.fofweb.com/History/Reference.asp?ID=12108>. Department of Ancient Near Eastern Art. "The Achaemenid Persian Empire (550-330 B.C.)." The Metropolitan

Museum of Art. 2001. In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/acha/hd_acha.htm>.Gascoigne, Bamber. “History of Persia.” History World. 17 November 2008. 19 November 2008.


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Works Cited [Cont’d].Frye, Richard. “The Persian Empire.” 1991. November 15, 2008.

<http://www.mnsu.edu/emuseum/prehistory/middle_east/persia.html>. "The Graeco-Persian Wars: The Battle of Marathon." bbc.co.uk. 29/10/06. BBC. 24 Nov 2008

<http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/A10083395>. Gascoigne, Bamber. “History of Persia.” History World. 17 November 2008. 19 November 2008. <http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?historyid=aa65>."The Graeco-Persian Wars: The Battle of Marathon." bbc.co.uk. 29/10/06. BBC. 24 Nov 2008 <http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/A10083395>. Halsall, Paul. "Ancient History Sourcebook: Herodotus: Xerxes invades Greece, from The Histories." fordham.edu .August 2000. Fordham University. 24 Nov 2008 <http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/herodotus- xerxes.html>. Hatzigeorgiou, Karen J. Cyrus the Great :: Sculpture of Cyrus. Digital image. 2008. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://karenswhimsy.com/cyrus-the-great.shtm>.Hooker, Richard. "Mesopotamia: The Persians." Washington State University: World Civilizations. 6 June 1999. Washington State University. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.wsu.edu/~dee/meso/persians.htm>.Peery, Norris R. Remains of Persepolis. Digital image. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.norrispeery.com/photo5.html>.Persian Empire as of 500 BC. Digital image. Forum Ancient Coins. 08 Nov. 2008 <http://www.forumancientcoins.com/articles/maps/maps_of_the_ancient_world.htm>."Persian Empire." Ancient and Medieval History Online. Facts On File,

Inc. http://www.fofweb.com/activelink2.asp?ItemID=WE49&iPin=CRC02046&SingleRecord=True (accessed November 8, 2008).Samiei, Nyusha. “Diary of Cambyses II.” 15 June 2004. 18 November 2008.

<http://www.iranian.com/History/2004/June/Cyrus/index.html. >Xerxes I. Digital image. Find A Grave. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://www.findagrave.com/cgi- bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&grid=8153452>.Xerxes I." thehistorychannel.co.uk. 2006. The History Channel. 24 Nov 2008


Zarathustra [Nineteenth century and contemporary representations of Zarathustra.]. Digital image. Homestead. 8 Nov. 2008 <http://worldhistory1a.homestead.com/zarathustra.html>.