Salamis fought today in 480BC
23rd September 480BC was a very significant day for Western civilisation, as it saw the naval battle of Salamis and Greek victory over the Persian King Xerxes, safeguard its existence.
The Persian King had long wanted to subjugate the Greek States and his 200000 man army was ready to do just that. A month ago a small force under the Spartan king Leonidas had halted his overland advance at Thermopylae. Now the Athenian Themistocles saw an opportunity to do the same at sea. Although outnumbered perhaps two to one, he knew his Triremes, with their lower centre of gravity, would fare better in the breezy waters between the island of Salamis and the port of Piraeus. The Persians, with their king watching on his golden throne from a cliff above, fell into his trap. Many of his higher, open seas combat unwieldy ships being taken in flank as they sailed up the Strait chasing a small number of seemingly fleeing ships.
Xerxes lost 200 of his 400 ships and the Greeks about 40. He had no choice but to retreat or risk losing his bridges over the Hellespont and supply route back to Persia.
Another land battle won at Plataea signalled the end of Persian expansion and ensured its safety for a long time to come.
I always enjoy reading your factoids!
Glad the Greeks stomped those Persians.
Greeks got stomped by the Romans.
Romans got stomped by the Germans.
Germans got stomped by the Americans.
What’s the next line?
Americans got stomped by the Americans……
Watching MSNBC then FOX I sometimes wonder…
Americans get stomped by the Chinese.
It’s all our fault for being from the same race of people who stomped them in the Boxer Rebellion.
It is remarkable how many sea battles have proved more important and lasting than land ones.
Unlike you Cromwell, I have always favoured the Infantry slogging it out.