The Greeks at War

  • Created by: Gianamar
  • Created on: 27-04-13 15:56

The Greeks at War Revision Sheet

Ionian Revolt

·         The tyrant Aristagoras of Miletus used the Persian military to try and invade the island of Naxos. It failed. When he understood that he was to be usurped, Aristagoras convinced the Ionians to rebel against Darius in 499 BC.

·         For the Persian Empire, Greece was naturally where their territory should have expanded. The topography caused the Achaemenid Empire’s expansion to appear completely natural.

·         King Darius was a very tolerant ruler, perhaps one of the reasons why the Persian Empire was so successful until it reached Greece. However, although Greece was not united as a single nation, but consisted of independent (often rival) city states, the Ionians spoke the same language, had the same gods and the same culture as the Greeks. Greek philosophy was supporting independence, and was against being ruled over by foreigners.

·         Aristagoras had a debt to pay Artaphernes, a Persian who had fought with him.

·         In the spring of 498 BC, Athenians and Eretrians burned down the Persian city Sardis.  Darius was enraged, and made his slave tell him every day “Master, remember the Athenians”

Battle of Marathon

·         Part of first Greco-Persian war. Persians led by King Darius. Revenge for the Athenians’ burning of Sardis.

·         Darius asked a slave of his to tell him every day “Master, remember the Athenians”

·         The Ionian Revolt was defeated by the Persians at the Battle of Lade.

·         The Persian fleet took an ex-tyrant, Hippias to tell them about the secrets of the Athenians, but according to Herodotus, Hippias then had a dream that the Persians lost.

·         Hippias lost his tooth in Greece during the expedition and Herodotus writes that he said that his tooth was the most that would be only part of him that would ever remain in Greece.

·         The Persians set up camp at Marathon

·         The Athenians and a small group of Plataeans marched to Marathon, blocking two potential exits for the Persians.

·         The Persians didn’t have their extremely strong cavalry, so Miltiades, an Athenian general called for immediate attack.

·         The Greeks left a weak middle section (half the number of rows of soldiers), which lured the Persians in, and then they were surrounded by the Greeks.

·         For approximately five days the armies therefore confronted each other across the plain of Marathon, in stalemate. The flanks of the Athenian camp were protected either by a grove of trees, or an abbatis of stakes (depending on the exact reading). Since every day brought the arrival of the Spartans closer, the delay worked in favour of the Athenians. There were ten Athenian strategoi (generals) at Marathon, elected by each of the ten tribes that the Athenians were divided into; Miltiades was one of these. In addition, in overall charge, was the War-Archon (polemarch), Callimachus, who had been elected by the whole citizen body…


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