Friday, April 10, 2015

This is who I am.

 Recently, for school I had to come up with a "Who I am" project. I chose to do it to the song
Hello My Name Is by Matthew West.

Here is the link: 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Persian wars


492 - 449 BC
Persia was one of the largest and most powerful empires of the ancient world. 
The Greek world was tiny. (Alexander had not come yet.)
The Persian world was huge.
Persians did not know (or forgot) what incredible warriors the Greeks were. 
The Spartans whole life was dedicated to war and battle.
Athenians had a navy with small ships that were easy to maneuver. 
Most of what we know about the Persian wars is because of the Greek historian, Herodotus.  (Sometimes referred to as “the father of history”).

The Persians attacked Greece three times, and failed three times.

Persian war number 1

     King Darius of Persia attacked Greece by sea, landing at Marathon.  Athens went to defend, but when they saw how big the army was they sent a runner to Sparta to see if they could come and help.  Sparta was having a festival to the god Pan (go figure), and couldn’t come.  So Athens, with 10,000 men, decided to make a new war tactic.  They split into three parts, surrounding the enemy on three sides.  The middle fell back and as the Persians advanced, the side forces came in and defeated them.  The Greeks were heavily outnumbered, but won because of their superior tactics and their well-trained hoplites1.
    The Greeks then sent the runner, Pheidippides, from Marathon to Athens.  It is said that he ran 26.3 miles without stopping.  He arrived at the city gates and exclaimed, “Nenikekamen!”  (“We have won!”) and then dropped to the ground, dead from exhaustion.

1 Hoplites are heavily armed foot soldiers of ancient Greece.  

Persian war number2
The Persians left the Greeks alone for ten years.  Now Xerxes, son of Darius, is King.  Xerxes decides to attack by land this time with a huge army from all over the Persian Empire.  Before he can do that, he has one setback.  Hellespont; the 30 mile stretch of water separating Persia from the mainland accessing Greece.  He constructs a bridge of over 600 boats and marches his army across.  Countries on the way surrender quickly and the Persian army passes through quickly.  They turn south to Greece and must pass through a steep mountainous pass called Thermopylae.  There is no other way for the army to get through the mountains into Greece.
    The Spartans, Athenians and Corinthians march north to meet them in Thermopylae, where they hold them at bay.  After a few days, a Greek traitor tells the Persians about another pass.  The Persians secretly come through and surround the Greeks.  300 Spartans, along with their king, fight for three days while the other Greek soldiers march away to safety.  The 300 Spartans fight bravely and gallantly but after three days the courageous soldiers and their king are all dead.  They have however given their lives to allow the safely of their comrades and now have the upper hand as the Persians continue south.

 Persian war number 3

Xerxes is furious with the results of the first two battles and continues south to Greece.  The Greeks move everyone out of Athens because they know that they stand no chance against the mass armies of Persia.  They let the Persians burn their city.   Everything is burned including the Parthenon on the Acropolis. 
    The Persians have way more ships than the Greeks, but the Greeks trick the Persians into thinking that they are going to attack them at night.  The Persian navy stays up all night watching and waiting while the Greeks are having a good night’s sleep.  The Greeks attack the next morning all rested while the Persians are exhausted.  Even though they are outnumbered the Greek (Athenian) navy wins.
    Then the Athenian navy tricks the Persians into attacking them near the island of Salamis.  The Persian ships outnumber the Greeks but they are much larger and harder to maneuver.  The Persian navy think that they are retreating and the blithering fools fall for it and attack in narrow waters where they are unable to move easily.  The Greeks turn and crush the Persian navy.  Without his navy, Xerxes cannot continue his invasion so he pulls out and goes home.

    At this point there is still a huge Persian land force left, but the Greeks deal with that situation quickly by gathering an allied force of 31 cities and defeating the Persians.  Meanwhile Greek forces attack and burn the rest of the Persian navy ships.  The Persians are done.  Salamis turns out to be the deciding battle in the Persian War.
  Imagine what would have happened if the Persians would have destroyed Ancient Greece at this time.  It would have affected all of human history!  Because of this, some historians think of Salamis as one of the most significant battles in the history of human culture.
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