More notes at http://tanguay.info/learntracker
C O U R S E 
The Ancient Greeks
Andrew Szegedy-Maszak, Wesleyan University
C O U R S E   L E C T U R E 
The First Persian War and the Battle of Marathon
Notes taken on May 1, 2015 by Edward Tanguay
Cyrus II of Persia [SIGH-rus] (576–530 BC)
conquered Croesus [KREE-sus] and took over Lydia
530 BC killed in battle
Magi {MAY-jigh] took over for a short time
6th century BC followers of Zoroastrianism
Darius I [dah-RIGH-us] 550-486 BC
ruled for long time: 522-486 BC
modern day Iran
Bahiston inscription [bah-HIS-ston]
"the place of god"
shows the King Darius
text details his conquests
presided over a massive empire
From the Thracian coast to western part of India
well-developed bureaucracy
enormous among of treasure
became king
Herodotus wrote extensively of him
was going to come into conflict with the Greeks
a very great size difference
508 BC: just established a democracy under Cleisthenes
King Cleomenes [clee-OH-men-eez] of Sparta had been forced to withdraw
506 BC: wanted to reassert his influence in Athens
others had designs of moving into Athens as well
Boeotia [bee-OH-shah] centered around Thebes
Euboea [yoo-BEE-ah] (island) centered around Chalcis
they had heard of political turmoil going on there
internal dissension made Spartans turn back
Athenians created Hoplite armies which drove back the Boeotians and others
young democracy proved itself
Athens made deal to get financial help from Persian Satrap [SAY-trap]
gave Persians earth and water
cultural misunderstanding
Persia took this as a sign that the Greeks were giving themselves over as subjects
Ionian cities had been brought under Persian control
had to start to pay taxes
Persians had installed their own vassal governments there
499 BC Ionian revolts
tyrant of the city of Miletus
a key player during the early years of the Ionian revolt against the Persian Achaemenid Empire [ah-KEE-men-eed]
goes to Sparta and asks to help
they say to no
goes to Athens
they agree to help
because Hippias was in Persia and Athens feared him returning
fleet of 20 ships
with other ships from Eretria [air-RHET-ree-ah]
burn Croesus' ancient capital of Sardis
Persians had felt that their alliance with Athens had been betrayed
King Darius was furious
Persia got prepared for war
494 BC the Ionian revolt was crushed
city of Miletus was sacked and burned
as revenge for the destruction of Sardis
but Darius also wanted to punish the Athenians directly
Athenians and Spartans kill the Persian ambassadors who come to ask for earth and water as a way to show loyalty
against protocol
ambassadors usually are protected in order to enable negotiations
491 BC Persians invade
490 BC make it to the mainland
first target is Eretria [ah-REE-tree-ah]
they destroy it
just off the coast of Attica
reaction in Athens was of stunned panic
Hippias was among the Persian forces
Herodotus tells story about Hippias
has a dream that he made love to his mother
believes this means he will rule in Athens
the Oedipal dream can be understood as significant because Marathon had been chosen by Hippias' father, Peisistratos, for a landing which opened the way for a victorious march on Athens and the establishment of tyranny
Herodotos intended to give a psychoanalytic explanation of why Hippias, who obviously knew the terrain to perfection, made a bad choice in advising the Persians
Hippias wanted to do as well as his father, but his wish took the character of an Oedipal wish to outdo the father and possess the mother, with subsequent guilt and self-defeat
Herodotus puts worth on dreams in his Histories in this way
490 BC: Battle of Marathon
Athenians mount a Hoplite defense
go out from the city to meet Persian
Miltiedes (550 – 489 BCE) [mil-TIGH-i-deez]
member of a great, old family
put his best troops not on the front line
but on side where they can attack the Persian flanks
Greeks: 192
Persians: over 6000 Persians
this was a win against all odds for the Greeks
Pheidippides sent as messenger back to Athens
reasons Greeks won
1. Hoplite armor was better
Persian armor tended to be a linen corslet
a shield made out of wicker
shown in art on pottery
depictions of Greeks vs. Persians
showing hoplite tactics
2. Greeks fought in tighter positions
3. Greeks were also fighting for the liberty of their homeland
a fight for freedom against despotism
Marathon was an ideological battle
John Stuart Mill
"As an event in English history, the Battle of Marathon is more important than the Battle of Hastings."
has an unusual status in world battles
but at Marathon, the Persians had been beat and were angry
the Persian wars were by no means over