Battle of Thermopylae (c. 480BC) - Research Paper Example

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Battle of Thermopylae Introduction The battle of Thermopylae was fought between the Persian Empire and Greek City States. The alliance of Greek City States was expertly led by the Sparta’s King Leonidas. This battle continued for 3 days. Ultimately Persian Empire won the battle of Thermopylae in spite of heroics and courage of 300 Spartans who fought till death with the mighty trained Persian soldiers…
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Battle of Thermopylae (c. 480BC)
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Download file to see previous pages King Leonidas was held out with mere 300 hoplites and was against thousands of best Great King’s troops. The battle of Thermopylae was during the invasion of Persian between 480-479 BC. The battle was first and between the Greeks and Persians. The force of Greek was very minute and was very much determined to fight and stand against thousands of Persian army. In central Greece, association of Greek-states at the pass of Thermopylae fought with the invading Persians. Greeks were outnumbered but they fought and held back Persians for three days and is known as history’s one of the most famous last stands. King of Sparta Leonidas blocked the road which was the only road to pass by the massive force of Xerxes I of Persia. The 300 Spartans fought till the end but were all killed and they would have known in advance that they would be killed. The courage shown by the Sparta provided a sense of belief and inspiration to the Greeks1. Spartans were never afraid of enemies and their numbers. Opposing forces According to Herodotus, Greek city-states consisted of around more than 6,200 men who fought with Persian army and were totally outnumbered. Persian army was about 2,242,000+. Greek army included 300 Spartans, 1000 Phocians, 500 Tegeans, other Arcadians 1000 and others. But comparing with the Persian army it is very minimal and very small army force. Persian army included 500,000 fleet crew, 1,500,000 infantry, 320,000 Greek allied troops, etc. numbers are very large indeed. 300 Spartans who fought for Greek city were an elite group of Spartan hoplites2. Each man of 300 Spartans had a living son. And it is said that each of the 300 Spartans had someone to fight for. 300 elite Spartans were led by the king Leonidas. Strategic and tactical considerations of the Opposing forces The Spartans didn’t have many options. But the king of Sparta Leonidas decided to place scorched earth policy. Policy was placed so that Greeks went out and destroy all buildings, livestock and grain and polluted the main water supply. And all the work was done before the arrival of Persians. When Persians arrived with their huge force at Thermopylae they had to rely on food which is being sent to them. They also found that they could not leave the land and that is not the situation to be in. The Greeks decided that they would make a stand at Thermopylae which is a narrow pass where northwest of Athens met at the sea. From the strategic point, Greeks have used best possible way to stop huge army of patricians. The Greek style of warfare was tactically suited in the pass at Thermopylae3. Leonidas used forces in a narrow pass so that Persians could not attack from flanks. The Greeks deployed in a phalanx. And this basically means Greeks stood in firm lines and used large shields to protect them. They stood firmly in lines and locked their shields together. They locked their shields so tight and close that there isn’t any gap between the shields for enemy to attack. Battle of Thermopylae First day The Phocians built a large ancient wall to stop raids from Thessaly. But it was destroyed and fallen apart. Leonidas went on to rebuild the wall and also send some local Greeks to protect the people who are rebuilding the wall. The Persians saw that rebuilding of the wall but were not concerned by the small force of Greeks. Persians ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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