Persian Wars Essay, Research Paper
The Persian war was a great war. It was fought between Greece and
Persia. Even though the war was fierce and there were many casualties the
outcome was great for Greece. It brought the Greek city-states together and
it also boosted their morale and gave them the confidence they needed to
become an even greater empire.
Athens was the wealthiest Greek city-state in 500 B.C. But they soon
faced a threat of war from the the Persians. The Persians had a great empire
that spread from Asia Minor all the way to the border of India. Persia was a
great empire and their territories included the Greek city-states of Asia
Minor. In 499 B.C. these city-states began to rebel and Athens sent ships to
help them. Some people say this was what led to the Persian War.
Neverless the Persians still easily defeated the city-states. Later though
Darius, the king of Persia, sent a huge force of soldiers across the Aegean
sea to punish Athens for sending their ships to help out the Greek city-states
in Asia Minor. The strong and mighty
Persian army landed at Marathon in 490 B.C. The Persian army had so many
people that they outnumbered the Athenian army 2 to 1. The Persian Army
had horses and archers while the Athenians had none. But none the less the
Athenian army put all their heart and fury into the battle at Marathon and
soon swept the Persians back to thier ship.
Happy about their victory the Greek’s sent Pheidippides, their fastest
runner, to relay the news. Now Athens was 26.2 miles away and they had no
horses so he had to sprint. Even though exhausted from the war he sprinted
the whole way. As soon as he got there he shouted “Rejoice, we conquer”
and then dropped dead from a heart attack.
Even though he was excited about the victory, Themistocles, who was
the Athenian leader, knew that it was only one battle in a war. He urged the
Athenians to build up their army and navy and to prepare other defenses.
The Athenians followed the advice and got ready for another battle.
In 480 B.C. Xerxes, Darius’ son, sent out a much larger army to attack
and conquer Greece. By this time though Athens had been preparing for
battle and had convinced Sparta and other city-states to join the war. Again the
Persians landed their army in Northern Greece. This time thought they were
going to travel through the mountains. Xerxes had a great force with many
horses and elephants. They could not fit everyone through the narrow
passages through the mountains at once and the Greeks knew this so they sent a small Spartan
force to guard it. For three weeks the valiant King Leonidas and his men
held off the Persian army. Finally though the Persian Army defeated them. But
Leonidas had bought enough time for Athens to be evacuated. After
defeating Leonidas the Persians marched down to Athens and burned it.
Meanwhile in the nearby strait of Salamis the Athens had devised a
plan. They had built a great navy and were luring the Persian navy into the
shallow strait. When the Persians came in they could not navigate their big
war ships and the Athenian navy destroyed the Persian navy at this battle.
Finally in the battle of Plataea the Greeks finally defeated the Persians
for good. This battle was on land and was Persias last resort. In this battle
which took place in 479 BC the remaining Persian forces in Greece were
pushed out. One of the great fighter who led Greece to a victory in this
battle was Aristides. After the Persian wars he took an important role in the
The outcome of the war was great for the Greeks. It increased their
sense of independence. They felt the gods had helped them win the war and
had helped them protect their superior form of government, the city-state,
from the Persians. After the war Athens became the most powerfull city-
state in Greece. In order to prepare for continued threats from Persia greece
organized the Delian League. The Delian League was an alliance with the
city-states of Greece. All though it was an alliance Athens was a superior
figure in it. It slowly used it’s power to create an Athenian empire and
moved the Treasury over to Athens and forced it’s allies to remain in the
group against their will. Athens also used money donated by other city-
states to rebuild their own city. The years after the war were golden for the
As I said before the Persian war was great for the Greeks. Even
though they lost many men in the end it was worth it. They learned their
strength’s and weaknesses and put aside their differences to come together
under one cause. Even though Athens got the spoils of the war it also
benefited the other city-states as well. They got to be independent and
become part of a great empire.