1 Los orígenes de Leónidas; 2 El mensaje secreto y el oráculo; 3 La delegación para Jerjes I; 4 Camino a las Termópilas; 5 La batalla de las. Este libro es una guía práctica y accesible para saber más sobre la batalla de las Termópilas, que le aportará la información esencial y le permitirá ganar. : Batalla de las Termopilas [The Battle of Thermopylae]: La hazaña de Leónidas [The Heroism of Leonidas] (Audible Audio Edition): Online Studio.

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The Persian invasion was a delayed response to the defeat of the first Persian invasion of Greecewhich had been ended by the Athenian victory at the Battle of Marathon in Bagalla. By BC Xerxes had amassed a huge army and navy, and set out to conquer all of Greece. The Athenian politician and general Themistocles had proposed that the allied Greeks block the advance of the Persian army at the pass of Thermopylae, and simultaneously block the Persian navy at the Straits of Artemisium.

A Greek force of approximately 7, men marched north to block the pass in the middle of BC. The Persian army, alleged by the ancient sources to have numbered over one million, but today considered to have been much smaller various figures are given by scholars, ranging between aboutand, [10] [11] arrived at the pass in late August or early September. The vastly outnumbered Greeks lxs off the Persians for seven days including three of battle before the rear-guard was annihilated in one of history’s most famous last stands.

During two full days of battle, the small force led by Leonidas blocked the only road by which the massive Persian army could pass. After the second day, a local resident named Ephialtes betrayed the Greeks by revealing a small path that led behind the Greek lines.

Leonidas, aware that his force was being outflanked, dismissed the bulk of the Greek army and remained to guard their retreat with Spartans and Thespiansfighting to the death. Others also reportedly remained, including up to helots and Thebans ; these Thebans mostly reportedly surrendered. Themistocles was in command termopilws the Greek Navy at Artemisium when he received news that the Persians had taken the pass at Thermopylae.

Since the Greek strategy required both Thermopylae and Artemisium to be held, given their losses, it was decided to withdraw to Salamis. The Persians overran Boeotia and then captured the evacuated Athens.

The Greek fleet—seeking a decisive victory over the Persian armada—attacked and defeated the invaders at the Battle of Salamis in late BC. Wary of being trapped in Europe, Xerxes withdrew with much of his army to Asia losing most to starvation and diseaseleaving Mardonius to attempt to complete the conquest of Greece.

However, the following year saw a Greek army decisively defeat the Persians at the Battle of Plataeathereby ending the Persian invasion. Both ancient and modern writers have used the Battle of Thermopylae as an example of the power of a patriotic army defending its native soil.

The performance of the defenders is also used as an example of the advantages of training, equipment, and good use of terrain as force multipliers and has become a symbol of courage against overwhelming odds.

The Sicilian historian Diodorus Siculuswriting in the 1st century BC in his Bibliotheca historicaalso provides an account of the Greco-Persian wars, partially derived from the earlier Greek historian Ephorus. This account termopilzs fairly consistent with Herodotus’. Archaeological evidence, such as the Serpent Column now in the Hippodrome of Constantinoplealso supports some of Herodotus’ specific claims.

Grundy was the first modern historian to do tdrmopilas thorough topographical survey of the narrow pass at Thermopylae, and to the extent that modern accounts of the battle differ from Herodotus’ they usually follow Grundy’s. On the Battle of Thermopylae itself, two principal sources, Herodotus’ and Simonides ‘ accounts, survive. Diodorus’ account seems to have been based on that of Ephorus and contains one significant deviation from Herodotus’ account: The Persian Empire was still relatively young and prone to revolts amongst its subject peoples.

The Bxtalla revolt threatened the integrity of his empire, and Darius thus vowed to punish those involved, especially the Athenians, “since he was sure that [the Ionians] would not go unpunished for their rebellion”.

Battle of Thermopylae

Darius sent emissaries to all the Greek city-states in BC asking for a gift of ” earth and water ” as tokens of their submission to him. In Athens, however, the ambassadors were put on trial and then executed by throwing them in a pit; in Sparta, they were simply thrown down a well. Darius thus put together an amphibious task force under Datis and Artaphernes in BC, which attacked Naxosbefore receiving the submission of the other Cycladic Islands.

The task force then moved on Eretria, which it besieged and destroyed. At the ensuing Battle of Marathonthe Athenians won a remarkable victory, which resulted in the withdrawal of the Persian army to Asia.


Darius, therefore, began raising a huge new army with which he meant to completely subjugate Greece; however, in BC, his Egyptian subjects revolted, indefinitely postponing any Greek expedition.

In the face of such imposing numbers, many Greek cities capitulated to the Persian demand for a tribute of earth and water.

The Athenians had also been preparing for war with the Persians since the mids BC, and in BC the decision was taken, under the guidance of the Athenian politician Themistoclesto build a massive fleet of triremes that would be essential for the Greeks to fight the Persians. In BC, Xerxes sent ambassadors around Greece requesting “earth and water” but very deliberately omitting Athens and Sparta. A congress of city-states met at Corinth in late autumn of BC, [38] and a confederate alliance of Greek city-states was formed.

It had the power to send envoys to request assistance and dispatch troops from the member states to defensive points, after joint consultation. This was remarkable for the disjointed Greek world, especially since many of the city-states in attendance were still technically at war with each other.

The “congress” met again in the spring of BC. A Thessalian delegation suggested that the Greeks could muster in the narrow Vale of Tempeon the borders of Thessaly, and thereby block Xerxes’ advance. However, once there, being warned by Alexander I of Macedon that the vale could be bypassed through Sarantoporo Pass and that Xerxes’ army was overwhelming, the Greeks retreated.

Themistocles, therefore, suggested a second strategy to the Greeks: Congress adopted this dual-pronged strategy. The Persian army seems to have made slow progress through Thrace and Macedon. News of the imminent Persian approach eventually reached Greece in August thanks to a Greek spy.

During the Carneia, military activity was forbidden by Spartan law; the Spartans had arrived too late at the Battle of Marathon because of this requirement. Leonidas took with him the men of the royal bodyguard, the Hippeis. The legend of Thermopylae, as told by Herodotus, has it that the Spartans had consulted the Oracle at Delphi earlier in the year.

The Oracle is said to have made the following prophecy:. O ye men who dwell in the streets of broad Lacedaemon! Honor the festival of the Carneia!! Otherwise, Either your glorious town shall be sacked by the children of PerseusOr, in exchange, must all through the whole Laconian country.

Battle of Thermopylae – Wikipedia

Mourn for the loss of a king, descendant of great Heracles. Herodotus tells us that Leonidas, in line with the prophecy, was convinced he was going to certain death since his forces were not adequate for a victory, and so he selected only Spartans with living sons. The Spartan force was reinforced en route to Thermopylae by contingents from various cities and numbered more than 7, by the time it arrived at the pass. Leonidas stationed 1, Phocians on the heights to prevent such a manoeuvre.

Leonidas calmed the baralla and agreed to defend Thermopylae. Xerxes sent a Persian emissary to negotiate with Termoplias. The Greeks batalla offered their kas, the title “Friends of the Persian People”, and the opportunity to re-settle on land better than that they possessed. Xerxes delayed for four days, waiting for the Greeks to disperse, before sending troops to attack them. The number of troops which Xerxes mustered for the second invasion of Greece has been the subject of endless dispute, most notably between ancient sources, which report very large numbers, and modern scholars, who surmise much smaller termooilas.

Herodotus claimed that there were, in total, batallx. Modern scholars tend to reject the figures given by Herodotus and other ancient sources as unrealistic, resulting from miscalculations or exaggerations on the part of the victors. Whatever the real numbers were, however, it is clear that Xerxes was anxious to ensure a successful expedition by mustering an overwhelming numerical superiority by land and by sea.

For instance, it is unclear whether the whole Persian army marched as far as Thermopylae, or whether Xerxes left garrisons in Macedon and Thessaly. According to Herodotus [49] [65] and Diodorus Siculus[66] the Greek army included the following forces:.

Pausanias ‘ account agrees with that of Herodotus whom he probably read except that he gives the number of Locrians, which Herodotus declined to estimate.

Residing in the direct path of the Persian advance, they termopilaa all the fighting men they had – according to Pausanias 6, termopils – which added to Herodotus’ 5, would have given a force of 11, Many modern historians, who usually consider Herodotus more reliable, [71] add the 1, Lacedemonians and the helots to Herodotus’ 5, to obtain 7, or about 7, men as a standard number, neglecting Diodorus’ Melians and Pausanias’ Locrians.

Furthermore, the numbers changed later on in the battle when most of the army retreated and only approximately 3, men remained Spartans, Thespians, Thebans, possibly up to helots, and 1, Phocians stationed above the pass, less the casualties sustained in the previous days.


From a strategic point of view, by defending Thermopylae, the Greeks were making the batqlla possible use of their forces.

Moreover, by defending two constricted passages Thermopylae and Artemisiumthe Greeks’ inferior numbers became less of a factor. Tactically, the pass at Thermopylae was ideally suited to the Greek style of warfare. Moreover, in the pass, the phalanx would have been very difficult to assault for the more lightly armed Persian infantry.

Although probably unsuitable for cavalry, this path could easily be traversed by the Persian infantry many of whom were versed in mountain warfare. It is often claimed that at the time, the pass of Thermopylae consisted of a track along the shore of the Malian Gulf so narrow that only one chariot could pass through at a time. Herodotus reports that the Phocians had improved the defences of the pass by channelling the stream from the hot springs to create a marsh, and it was a causeway across this marsh which was only wide enough for a single chariot to traverse.

In a later passage, describing a Gaulish attempt to force the pass, Herodotus states “The cavalry on both sides proved useless, as the ground at the Pass is not only narrow, but also smooth because of the natural rock, while most of it is slippery owing to its being covered with streams For the number of them that disappeared beneath the mud was great.

El rey Leónidas

It is also said that on the southern side of the track stood cliffs that overlooked the pass. However, a glance at any photograph of the pass shows there are no cliffs, only steep slopes covered in thorny bushes and trees.

Although no obstacle to individuals, such terrain would not be passable by an army and its baggage train. On the north side of the roadway was the Malian Gulfinto which the land shelved gently. When at a later date, an army of Gauls led by Brennus attempted to force the pass, the shallowness of the water gave termopila Greek fleet great difficulty getting close enough to the fighting to bombard the Gauls with ship-borne missile weapons.

Along the path itself was a series of three constrictions, or “gates” pylaiand at the centre gate a wall that had been erected by the Phocians, in the previous century, to aid in their lass against Thessalian invasions. The terrain of the battlefield was nothing that Xerxes and his forces were accustomed to.

Although coming from a mountainous country, the Persians were not prepared for the real nature of the country they had invaded. The pure ruggedness of this area is caused by torrential downpours for four months of the year, combined with an intense summer season of scorching heat that cracks the ground.

Vegetation is scarce and consists of low, thorny shrubs. The hillsides along the pass are covered in thick brush, with some plants reaching 10 feet 3.

With the sea on one side and steep, impassable termopias on the other, King Leonidas and his men chose the perfect topographical position to bwtalla the Persian invaders. Today, the pass is not near the sea, but is several kilometres inland because of sedimentation in the Malian Gulf.

The old track appears at the foot of the hills around the plain, flanked by a modern road. On the fifth day after the Persian arrival at Thermopylae and the first day of the battle, Xerxes finally resolved to attack the Greeks.

First, he ordered 5, archers to fire a barrage of arrows, but they were ineffective; they fired from at least yards away, according to modern day scholars, and the Greeks’ bronze shields and helmets deflected the arrows. After that, Xerxes sent a force of 10, Medes and Cissians to take the defenders prisoner and bring them before him. According to Herodotus and Diodorus, the king, having taken the measure of the enemy, threw tremopilas best troops into a second assault the same day, the Immortalsan elite corps of 10, men.

On the second day, Xerxes again sent in the infantry to attack the pass, “supposing that their enemies, being so few, were now disabled by wounds and could no longer resist. Later that day, however, as the Persian king was pondering what to do next, he received a windfall; a Trachinian named Ephialtes informed him of the mountain path around Thermopylae and offered to guide the Persian army.