The Persian War

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Transcript The Persian War

The Persian Wars
Chapter 10 Section 3
Background: Why did the war
between Greece and Persia
A. Persia- Empire that stretches
from Asia Minor to India
B. Persia conquers Asia Minor in
545 BC
1. Greek city-states of Miletus,
Ephesus and Halicarnassus are in Ionia
which is in Asia Minor – so they are
conquered, too!
2. (Remember!) Ionia had been
settled by Mycenaeans (Greeks)
fleeing the Dorians during the
Dark Age!
C. Darius –
King, rules
empire in
the world!
D. 525-499 BC - Ionian city-states
revolt against Persia and they
ask Athens for help!
E. Darius destroys the three
cities Miletus, Ephesus, and
1. He swears REVENGE
against Athens and Greece!
F. Darius demands “gifts of Earth
and Water” (tribute which
symbolizes submission and
surrender) from the Greeks
1. Greeks refuse to give anything
to Darius!
2. Darius is ANGRY
II. The Persian Wars: the four
A. 490 BC – First battle at
1. Darius crosses Aegean Sea with his
men and lands at Marathon
a. Marathon is a plain 26 miles
northeast of Athens
2. Athenians
seek aid
Sparta, but
they refuse
due to a
3. Miltiades - Athenian General
a. Urges Athens to fight
b. His plan is to use the phalanx, a
unique battle strategy with weak
fighters in center and strong
fighters on sides which encircle
the enemy!
4. Athens wins the battle and
Persia goes home
5. Pheidipides, Athens fastest runner,
runs 26 miles to Athens, yells “Nike!”
(victory) and dies from exhaustion
a. Athenians, filled with confidence, hold
commemorative race to celebrate the
victory at Marathon
b. marathon becomes a race at the
6. Silver mines discovered
outside Athens
a. Athens has extra money from
b. Themosticles - Athens leader, says
to use money to build warships called
c. Trireme- warship, 3 rows of
oarsmen stacked above each
other; bronze prow
B. 480 BC Second battle
1. Xerxes is
now Persian
King, son of
2. He calls
together biggest
army ever seen,
250,000 men
He marches to the Dardanelles
Strait and makes a pontoon bridge (a
floating bridge) for his men to cross
from Asia to Europe
a. First attempt – destroyed by a storm
b. Second attempt - success
4. The Greeks
then unite
leader, King
March to Thermopylae - narrow
mountain pass where Persians can be
picked off
a. There are 7,000 Greeks; the
Greeks are outnumbered 35 to 1
6. Ephialtes – Greek traitor,
shows Persians a goat path
around the mountains
Greek army retreats, except for 300
Spartans and 700 other Greeks
a. King Leonidas leads them
b. Outnumbered 250 to 1
c. Fight to the last man against the
Persians! – all killed
d. They hold up the Persians long
enough to allow the Greek allies to set
up a defense of the Peloponnesus
8. Persians win this battle and
march to Athens
C. 480 BC – Third battle at
1. Athenians go to Oracle of
Delphi for prediction
a. Oracle- one
who predicts
the future
b. Oracle says,
“The wooden
walls will save
c. Themosticles decides the
wooden walls must mean…
d. The triremes, the ships they
2. Themosticles persuades Athenians to
go to Salamis – island off the coast
of Athens
Meanwhile, the Persians burn Athens
to the ground
4. Persian Navy is lured (by reports of a
pretend traitor) into the narrow
strait between Salamis and mainland
a. Only a few Persian ships can
enter at a time
b. Greeks pick them off with their
more maneuverable triremes
5. Greeks win naval battle
against Persians
6. Xerxes returns home
7. Athenians return home to
rebuild Athens
D. 479 BC – Fourth battle at
1. Persians completely defeated!
III. Results of War
A. Europe and Greece “saved”
from growing Persian Empire –
they remain free and
B. Greece free to enter the
Golden Age, fifty years of
peace, and culture was very
C. Unique Greek culture develops
during the Golden Age which
influences our culture today –
especially Democracy, arts,
architecture, and the theater