Presentation on theme: "Battle of Salamis Bay. Review Xerxes defeated the Spartans at Thermopylae. He marched his troops and sent his fleet to Athens. He ransacked and burned."— Presentation transcript:
Battle of Salamis Bay
Review Xerxes defeated the Spartans at Thermopylae. He marched his troops and sent his fleet to Athens. He ransacked and burned a good part of the city including the Temple of Athena on the Acropolis.
The State of Athens Xerxes could now: –fulfill his father's mission to capture Athens –get revenge for their involvement in the Ionian revolt –avenge Darius' humiliation at Marathon Athens was vulnerable to attack by Persians. The city was evacuated, most people escaped to Salamis.
Greek Tactics Themistocles put all able-bodied men on ships and assembled the fleet in the straits of Salamis. He felt the Greeks had a good chance at defeating the Persians in the narrow waters.
Problem facing Xerxes It was getting late in the year and the storms of winter would soon make the seas around Greece impassable. The Persian navy, possibly even the king's own person, could be forced to winter in Greece.
Hook, Line and Sinker Xerxes was told (by a Greek) that the Greek fleet was fleeing and that the Athenians would join the Persians out of disgust with the other Greek cowards. (This was a trick) Xerxes took the bait and attacked. –He watched from his throne again
Xerxes Attacks Xerxes blocks off both ends of the strait. The entrance to the strait was narrow causing the fleet to break formation thus weakening them. He expects to find a fleet fleeing. Instead he is attacked. The Greeks drew the Persian fleet into the narrow bay.
Problems Facing the Persians 1.The Persian ships were too large for the narrow strait. (they could not maneuver) 2.Persians were crashing into their own ships and were very disorganized. 3.If the ships sank the Greeks could swim the Persian could not. 1.More Persians died from drowning than from the actual battle. 1.For weeks, even months after the battle, Persian bodies were washing up on the shores around Athens. The Persians lost 200 ships and the Greeks lose 40. The Persians realized they were in trouble and they fled to Hellespont in Asia Minor.
Greeks Hot in Pursuit The Greek fleet followed the Persians. The trip was very difficult and took 45 days. Greeks took an oath: “I shall fight to the death to keep my country’s freedom, and if my fellow soldier is killed I shall bury him properly. I shall resist being conquered and will not lay down and die.” The Greeks were willing to fight for freedom. After realizing that Hellespont was too narrow for battle so they head south.
Final Battle at Mycale In 479 BC the two sides fought, 60,000 Greeks 80,000 Persians in a battle at Mycale. Why? –Greeks were more organized. –The Greeks were determined to get rid of the Persians. –They were unified. To rub it in the Greeks burned the Persian fleet off the coast.
What about the army? The Persian army was watching the battle at Salamis Bay from the Athenian hills. Xerxes fled for home, but he left the army in Thessaly. They fought their last battle in Boeotia. They fought as undisciplined troops. The Greeks were able to hold off the army and defeat them.
Results of War The Greeks won – Persia lost 479 BC Greece was now the supreme power. –They had complete control of the Aegean world once controlled by Persia. –Trade flourished –Greek ideas spread throughout the known Mediterranean world. –Greece had a strong sense of unity. –Athens was now known as a strong power because of her navy. Athens was in ruins because of Persian Attack. Athens becomes Imperialistic.
Ancient Warfare to Today How are tactics and methods of war different today from ancient warfare? –Technology –Not a surprise attack –Not a lot of hand to hand any more. (Was up to WWI) How are they similar?