Reasons for the Defeat of the Persians in 490 B.C and 480 - 479 B.C

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“Kings had always been involving and impoverishing their people in wars, pretending generally, if not always, that the good of the people was the object” – Abraham Lincoln.

The Persian Wars were a series of destructive and malevolent battles which occurred in the time frame of 490B.C and 480 – 479B.C. The Greek victory over the Persians in the Persian Wars cannot be attributed to only one factor, more it was a commixture of factors. Such factors include unity, leadership, strategy, tactics and the pre-eminence of the Greek soldier. Each contributing factor was to play a distinctive and pivotal role in the various battles to come, which ultimately would lead to the subsequent demise of the Persians.

The Conflict among the Greeks and
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Hence, the tactics and the paramount strategy devised by Miltiades in the Battle of Marathon as well as the unification of the Greek forces, both effectively crushed the Persian onslaught and significantly increased the confidence of the Greeks to incline themselves in a common cause if the Persians attacked again.

The pre-eminence of the Greek soldier proved decisive in the Battle of Marathon. Although only ‘citizen soldiers’, the Greek hoplites were far more disciplined than their Persian counterparts and also better protected, with their bronze-visored helmets, solid bronze breastplates, shields and javelins. The Persians on the contrary were generally lightly dressed, with wicker shields and bows and arrows and sometimes had body armour of scales sewn to leather vest. Herodotus states that the Persians were “deficient in armour, untrained and greatly inferior in skill”. This crucial element destabilized the Persian assault as they fell at the hands of a much more skillful, better equipped and tactically superior Greek army. With their unprecedented use of battle strategy and intimate knowledge of their surroundings, the Greeks were able to defeat their Persian enemy.

The second invasion of Greece came at the Battle of Thermopylae and Artemesium under King Xerxes, the son of King Darius. Thermopylae was the gateway to central Greece and was chosen as the desired battleground

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