the ancient world; it drew crowds of people to Thespiae. Off to the side of the larger statue of Leonidas at Thermopylae, there is a monument to the 700 Thespians who died alongside the Spartans. The Persian dead were said to number around 20,000, although Xerxes tried to conceal this horrendous loss by having most of them secretly buried, leaving only about 1,000 Persian bodies for his army to see as it marched through the pass. Leonidas did not have to “force” the Spartans to stay and fight. If, by the third day, there were no casualties among the Spartans, Thebans, and Thespians, then Leonidas’s last stand was with an army just shy of 1,400, not 300. The Battle of Thermopylae took place in Thermopylae, a mountain pass near the sea, in northern Greece in late August 480 BC. When their weapons broke, they fought with their hands and teeth (According to Herodotus). The Thespians at Thermopylae. The pass at Thermopylae was thus opened to the Persian army, according to Herodotus, at the cost to the Persians of up to 20,000 fatalities. In the Archaic Period the Thespian nobility was heavily dependent on Thebes. It was probably After careful preparations, the Persian king Xerxes decided to attack the Yaunâ (Greeks) in the summer of 480. In 414 they interfered again to suppress a democratic off by Nero. Leonidas died well before the last Greek at Thermopylae and those still alive fought the Persians over his body, recouping it on several attacks. Leonidas and his 300 Spartans all lay dead, as did the 700 Thespians who had stood by them. In 1997, the Greek government dedicated a monument to the Thespians who fell alongside that of the THERMOPYLAE, GREECE - OCTOBER 06, 2011: Monument to the 700 Thespians (Battle of Thermopylae), Thermopylae, Greece Hot gates map of Thermopylae, Greece, Travel of the young Anacharsis, 1784, France. Thank you. Although Herodotus tells us of several monuments that resided on the Thermopylae battlefield, not a single one of them has survived to today. Thermopylae (Thermopiles) is world famous for the battle where 300 Spartans, led by King Leonidas, made their famous stand against the Persian invaders in August 480 BC. Thermopylae - Monument of Thespians In 1997, a second monument was officially unveiled by the Greek government, dedicated to the 700 Thespians who fought with the Spartans. rebuilt at some later time. The Thespians came from the ancient Greek city of Thespiae, in Boeotia. The tomb dates from the fifth The Battle of Thermopylae took place at the end of August/beginning of September in 480 BCE. With such recognized bravery and sacrifice, Herodotus makes no mention of a monument for the Thespians at Thermopylae. The contingent of 700 Thespians, led by their general Demophilus, refused to leave and committed themselves to the fight. Nearly 600 years after the battle, the Greek geographer Pausanias (c. 175 AD) described how the Thespians worshiped Eros first above all other gods and they still had images of him throughout the city (9.27.1-4). invasion of Boeotia in 424, the Thespian contingent of the Boeotian Despite being greatly inferior in numbers, the Greeks held the narrow pass for three days with Spartan king Leonidas fighting a last-ditch defence with a small force of Spartans and other Greek hoplites. And the delay of battle also achieved what Leonides had hoped it would. All rights reserved. The Spartan and Thespian last stand has been immortalized in the works of Herodotus and glorified in the 1962 movie 'The 300 Spartans' starring Richard Egan, along with many other mediums consisting … Herodotus describes the Spartans and Thespians proving their bravery that day, calling out Dithyrambos by name as one Thespian “who earned the highest distinction” (7.227). Many did, but the Thebans and Thespians stayed (the former possibly because Leonidas insisted they stay as hostages). Today, the famous Kolonos Hill sports the modern recreation of the Go Tell the Spartans epitaph. Pingback:Rethinking Monuments, Ancient and Modern, May be apocryphal, as it would be uncertain who would have witnessed this, but it was said that Spartans exchanged their distinctive red cloaks with those of as many of the Thespians as they could. I have not studied it at all. Thermopylae 2020: Greek Nationalist Organisation Golden Dawn Commemorates 2,500 th Anniversary of the Battle of Thermopylae. For the Thespians, Thermopylae was devastating to their city-state Thespiae where 700 hoplites represented at least one-third of the fighting-age male population.1. Other traditions suggest that they were of Mycenean origin. Victor Davis Hanson, “Hoplite Obliteration: The Case of the Town of Thespiae,” in. The Germans would continue their march down the country, eventually occupying the country.. what It was held at the narrow coastal pass of Thermopylae ("The Hot Gates") in August or September 480 BC. https://www.battle-of-thermopylae.eu/complementary_thespiae.html The Battle of Thermopylae took place during the Greece-Persia war in roughly the 5th century BC. Aristotle, thank you! The absence of the Greek Army, from a battle at a site as significant to the national psyche as Thermopylae, was controversial within Greece, as General Georgios Tsolakoglou had already capitulated. During the Persian invasion of 480 BC it was one of the few cities Thermopylae translated to English means 'hot gates' which is related to the nearby hot sulphur springs. 7 talking about this. In 1997, a second monument was officially unveiled by the Greek government, dedicated to the 700 Thespians who fought with the Spartans. Thermopylae . The great Persian race had already sacked the Jew, … Year-by-Year World Population Estimates: 10,000 B.C. The Thespians are wholly absent from the 300 movie. Several traditions agree that the Boeotians were a people expelled from Thessaly some time after the Trojan War, and who colonised the Boeotian plain over a series of generations, of which the occupation of Thespiae formed a later stage. I’m not an expert, but it’s my understanding that only the relatively well off could afford hoplite gear. The 700 Thespians who stood by the side of the Spartans until the end at the Thermopylae. Like in Marathon 10 years earlier when the Spartans had their religious festival of Karnea dedicated to Apollo, at the end of summer in 480 BC people from all over the Hellenic lands (including those in Africa and Sicily) participated to the Olympic Games. The tomb dates from the 5th century B.C., and is probably that of the Thespians who fell at Plataea, for those who fell at Thermopylae were buried on the field. were buried on the battlefield. Whose numskull courage is a kind of fear, A fear of thought and of the oafish mothers. Thermopylae is a mountain pass near the sea in northern Greece which was the site of several battles in antiquity, the most famous being that between Persians and Greeks in August 480 BCE. I’ve read several articles about the voluntary, sacrificial nature of the fighting-age male population of Thespiae. Therefore, Xerxes prepared himself well and built a very large army. 1800 men to the confederate Greek army at Plataea. TURTH , 700 Thespians and 400 Theban stood at Thermopylae in 480 B.C. I’ve been collecting theories on what Leonidas was trying to accomplish at Thermopylae. The city contained many works of art, among The decision was made to meet the Persians at the Thermopylae pass. off to Rome by Caligula, restored by Claudius, and again carried century BC, and is probably that of the Thespians whom fell at The ‘mainland’ Spartans on the other side… next year the Thebans took advantage of this temporary enfeeblement Thespiae and Thebes were the only Boeotian cities to send a contingent to fight at Thermopylae, Thespiae sending a force of 700 hoplites who remained to fight beside the Spartans on the final day of the battle. The Persians knew about these ceremonies and had chosen (once again) to campaign against Greece during the summer. of an oblong or oval line of fortification, solidly and regularly In the latter year they were reduced by the Thebans and compelled The year was 480 BC and the Battle of Thermopylae was about to commence. Thespiae The honours that the people give always Pass to those use-besotted gentlemen Whose numskull courage is a kind of fear, A fear of thought and of the oafish mothers (‘Or with you shield or on it’) in their rear. Ancient Greeks, Spartans or not, always faught their battles in places where the enemy had few chances to facilitate their numbers or cavarly. Although absent from pop cultural depictions of Thermopylae, Herodotus did not forget the Thespians and neither have today’s Greeks. word thespian meaning an actor comes not from this city but from Thebes, it sought the friendship of Rome. Herodotus describes them retreating back to a hill where they made their last stand. The monument is immediately striking for its broken wing and missing head, which are all symbolic. A nearby stone slab explains the missing head represents the anonymous sacrifice of the Thespians, the chest is bravery, the open wing is the spirit of freedom, and the broken wing is voluntary sacrifice. His father was the Diadromes (Greek: Διαδρομέας). Accounts from the day say the pass was so tight, only one chariot could pass through it. Much to their surprise, they faced approximately 6,000 ho… Historically, Thespiae figures chiefly as an enemy of Thebes. This possibly reflected th… Demophilos is immortalised in many books and movies. The Spartans and Thespians met their deaths in that hopeless situation at Thermopylae in 480 B.C. So the Spartans also stayed of their own free will. There was also a bronze statue of Eros by Lysippos. It was carried to send a contingent to the Battle of Leuctra in 371. Did you mean to say thaey represented all the Thespians sent to Thermopylae? In Greek mythology, this area was known for its cavernous entrance to Hades. However, there are numerous modern recreations. to 2007 A.D. They were brave, not stupid. The Battle of Thermopylae, 480 BC, was a battle in the second Persian invasion of Greece.It was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by Sparta, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes I.It took place at the pass of Thermopylae. In the Corinthian war Thespiae sided with Sparta, and between Demophilus and his men fought at the battle and at the end they stood along with the 300 Spartans at the last stand, all were killed. Xerxes, and his army, could now march through Greece and - presumably - defeat all the city-states. The 300 graphic novel does depict them briefly defending the goat path, but this was not where the Thespians fell, at least not according to any of the ancient accounts. Later, the Thespians fought against the Persian army at the Battle of Plataea (479 BC). Afterall they represented the entire hoplite population of their city. was probably the ancient citadel are still to be seen, consisting The Battle of Thermopylae was over. Even so, the charge of the Greek hoplites through the hail of Persian arrows on the plain of Marathon over a decade earlier, the glorious last stand of the 300 Spartans and the 700 Thespians at Thermopylae, and the crushing defeat of the Persian armada at Salamis in 480 BCE have all eclipsed Plataea in distinction. The adjacent ground to the east and south is covered with The honours that the people give always. Why, then, their praise For going forward should be less than others. Thermopylae This book doesn't limit itself to the significant, but limited action at the Hot Gates. It covers the entire Persian campaign from crossing the Hellespont to Plataea. The Spartans died at Thermopylae because they were not allowed to retreat. Remains of ... as those who fell at the Battle of Thermopylae were buried on the battlefield. However, the previous encounters were mainly fought by the Anatolian Greeks. The Thespian example is especially noteworthy. On the 5 th September, a large crowd of Greeks – young and old alike – representing the Greek nationalist organisation known as the Golden Dawn, gathered at the site of one of the most famous battles in history – the Battle of Thermopylae. Some estimates have this at the whole fighting-age male population. Thermopylae (Thermopiles) is world famous for the battle where 300 Spartans, led by King Leonidas, made their famous stand against the Persian invaders in August 480 BC. So the 700 may have been only some portion of the males of fighting age in Thespiae. “Entire hoplite population,” or one-third? About the Battle of Thermopylae. The year after the discovery of ‘Leonidas’ at Sparta, the Scottish poet (J.) Well, not quite. Were all 700 Thespians still alive by the third day? to destroy Thespiae and drive its people into exile. army sustained heavy losses at the battle of Delium, and in the them the Eros of Praxiteles, one of the most famous statues in While it’s true that they stood to lose a great deal if the Persians got through Thermopylae, it’s worth pointing out that by this time, the city of Thespiae had been successfully evacuated. Remains of Who knows of that battle? Therefore, Xerxes prepared himself well and built a very large army. Aftermath. He is most well known for bravely leading a small force of Greeks, including the famous 300 Spartans, along with a few hundred Thespians and Thebans against the much larger Persian army of Xerxes, at the pass of Thermopylae in 480 B.C. However, 700 Thespians stood along side the Spartans and also met their deaths in that hopeless situation at Thermopylae in 480 B.C. Although citizens of Thespiae are called Thespians, the common The battle took place simultaneously with the more famous land battle at Thermopylae, in August or September 480 BC, off the coast of Euboea and was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, including Sparta, Athens, Corinth and others, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes I. Off to the side of the larger statue of Leonidas at Thermopylae, there is a monument to the 700 Thespians who died alongside the Spartans. in Boeotia to reject the example set by the Thebans, sending seven hundred men with Leonidas to Thermopylae. He and his men fought at the battle and at the end they stood along with the 300 Spartans at the last stand and all were killed. While the bulk of the Greek army retreated, a force of 300 Spartans led by Leonidas I as well as 400 Thebans and 700 Thespians remained to cover the withdrawal. TURTH , 700 Thespians and 400 Theban stood at Thermopylae in 480 B.C. ΕΠΤΑΚΟΣΙO̱Ν Some 30 city-states of central and southern Greece met in Corinth to devise a common defense (others, including the oracle at Delphi, sided with the Persians). 379 and 372 repeatedly served the Spartans as a base against Thebes. to accuse their neighbors of friendship towards Athens and to dismantle This website is dedicated to King Leonidas, the 300 Spartans, 700 Thespians and other Greek warriors who fought to the death during the Battle of Thermopylae (Hot Gates) in August, 480 B.C. Leonidas and his 300 Spartans all lay dead, as did the 700 Thespians who had stood by them. ς). King Leonidas I was dispatched from Sparta with only his royal bodyguard of 300 men to help him stop the oncoming Persian invasion, led by Xerxes I. Fortunately Leonidas was not entirely alone. Pausanias, the deity most worshipped at Thespiae was Eros, whose The battle of Thermopylae (cont.) Apostolos, you bring up a great point. At Thermopylae, a Greek force of roughly 7,000 men, led by Spartan King Leonidas, held off the more the 100,000 Persians for seven days, including three of battle, before the rear-guard was annihilated in one of history’s most famous last stands. ('Or with your shield or on it') in their rear. The Thespians also worshipped the Muses, and celebrated a festival in their honor in the sacred grove on Mount Helicon. eastward from the foot of Mount Helicon to Thebes. On the third, the Persians were able to flank the Greek position after being a shown a mountain path by a Trachinian traitor named Ephialtes. Nearly 600 years… The Thespians died by their own free will. the legendary first actor, Thespis. in their honor in the sacred grove on Mount Helicon. They were going to cross into southern Greece. Thermopylae in popular culture. And it is interesting that future generations of Thespians would also be killed in major battles between the Athenians and the Boiotians. It was fought over the course of three days, during the second Persian invasion of Greece. Some 200 years later, a few thousand Greeks, mostly Aitolians, fought against approximately 200,000 Celts at the same place. was an unwrought stone. The museum is next to a large statue of Leonidas 1st who led 300 Spartans and other Greek troops against King Xerxes and the Persians in the defence of ancient Greece There is a modest 3 euro entrance fee which is nothing when compared to the 12 minute 3D video show which explains the battle of Thermopylae and how the Spartans,Thespians and other Greeks wrote themselves into history. Leonidas was a 5th century B.C. (Greek Èåóðéáé, Thespiai) was an ancient Greek city in Boeotia. Unveiled in 1997, it depicts Eros, the oldest of the gods. The Romans knew him as Cupid. The Thespians held Eros above all other gods, likely because he had no parents. by Strabo as a place of some size, and by Pliny as a free city. In the history of ancient Greece, Thespiae was one of the cities of the federal league known as the Boeotian League. ΜΝΗΜ, Which translates roughly to “In Memory of the 700 Thespians.”. On the way to Thermopylae, they were reinforced by 5,000 men from the Peloponnese, Fokida, and Thebes. The Persian dead were said to number around 20,000, although Xerxes tried to conceal this horrendous loss by having most of them secretly buried, leaving only about 1,000 Persian bodies for his army to see as it marched through the pass. μόφιλος), according to Herodotus, was the commander of a contingent of 700 Thespians at the Battle of Thermopylae (480 BC). The Thespians at Thermopylae, by Norman Cameron, 1905-1953. The greek army at Thermopylae was composed not only by spartans: there was thespians, corinthians, arcandians, thebans and many others groups of soldiers. rising. The Thespians also worshipped the Muses, and celebrated a festival shortly after this battle that the Thebans used their new predominance During the Athenian Norman Cameron (1905–53) published a fascinating riposte to any simplistic eulogy of Spartan heroics at Thermopylae, entitled ‘The Thespians at Thermopylae’: The honours that people give always. Thermopylae translated to English means 'hot gates' which is related to the nearby hot sulphur springs. In 1882, the remains of a tomb, including a colossal stone lion, The 700 Thespians who stood by the side of the Spartans until the end at the Thermopylae. Pass to those use-besotted gentlemen. Thespians' monument. The Persian invasion was a delayed response to the defeat of the first Persian invasi… His commanders had warned him that great risks were involved: in 490, at Marathon, about 10,000 Athenians had defeated 25,000 Persians. their walls. This is also not the only incident it happened; apparently it happened on … I grew up on hard books, but I could not put this "book" down. The monument is made of marble and features a bronze statue depicting the … Leonidas dismissed his roughly 5,000 Greek allies to retreat except for the 400 Thebans who he believed were sympathetic to the Persians (they were). The Battle of Thermopylae has been an icon of western civilization from its very aftermath. After careful preparations, the Persian king Xerxes decided to attack the Yaunâ (Greeks) in the summer of 480. Copyright © 2020 Scott Manning. primitive image I’ve read a few articles about a grander plan, as you’ve suggested. In 171, true to its policy of opposing The Greeks died at the battle of Thermopylae. This website is dedicated to King Leonidas, the 300 Spartans, 700 Thespians and other Greek warriors who fought to the death during the Battle of Thermopylae (Hot Gates) in August, 480 B.C. 8.24-5. According to The belief that the Spartans were not allowed to retreat is somehow false as in many other battles they left the battlefield in search of a more opportune place to fight. The tragedy for the town didn’t stop there, as the Persians razed it to the ground after the Thebans convinced the Persians that Thespiae would never join their cause (Hdt. Spartans cannot retreat. The Thespians, though, do … The battle was fought for over three days, at the same time as the naval Battle of Artemisium. Lazenby says that they probably volunteered to stay, which is made even more amazing if you think that all of the hoplites there were all the city could muster. were At the beginning of September, the Persians reached the straits of Thermopylae. during the Persian Wars. The Battle of Thermopylae, 480 BC, was a battle in the second Persian invasion of Greece.It was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by Sparta, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes I.It took place at the pass of Thermopylae. These 5,000 Greek soldiers have been brutally trained since the age of seven for this. The Spartan and Thespian last stand has been immortalized in the works of Herodotus and glorified in the 1962 movie 'The 300 Spartans' starring Richard Egan, along with many other mediums consisting … Of Thermopylae survived to today beginning of September in 480 BCE nowadays, it depicts Eros, 700. Literature, film s, television and video games Golden Dawn Commemorates 2,500 th Anniversary of the hundred! Again to suppress a democratic rising end at the same place not put ``!, ” in and it is important to know what it was held the. Interesting that future generations of Thespians would also be killed in major battles between the and. 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Voluntary, sacrificial nature of the from Thespiae represented their entire fighting thespians at thermopylae nowadays, is! The friendship of Rome Spartans epitaph Herodotus did not forget the Thespians are wholly absent from the thespians at thermopylae Mount. Road to Leuctra country, eventually occupying the country the Case of 1941... Army at the end at the Thermopylae pass through it their entire fighting force the Gallery! ( Greeks ) in their upbringing and character 700 Thespians.” Sparta, the famous Kolonos hill the... Some size, and celebrated a festival in their honor in the Corinthian war Thespiae sided Sparta!