Arcadia is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the administrative region of Peloponnese, it is situated in the eastern part of the Peloponnese peninsula. It takes its name from the mythological figure Arcas. In Greek mythology, it was the home of the god Pan. In European Renaissance arts, Arcadia was celebrated as an harmonious wilderness. Arcadia has its present-day capital at Tripoli, it covers about 18% of the Peloponnese peninsula, making it the largest regional unit on the peninsula. Arcadia has a ski resort on Mount Mainalo, located about 20 km NW of Tripoli. Other mountains of Arcadia are the Lykaion in the west; the climate consists of hot summers and mild winters in the eastern part, the southern part, the low-lying areas and the central area at altitudes lower than 1,000 m. The area receives rain during fall and winter months in the rest of Arcadia. Winter snow occurs in the mountainous areas for much of the west and the northern part, the Taygetus area, the Mainalon. After the collapse of the Roman power in the west, Arcadia remained as part of the Greek-speaking Byzantine Empire.
Arcadia remained a beautiful, secluded area, its inhabitants became proverbial as herdsmen leading simple pastoral unsophisticated yet happy lives, to the point that Arcadia may refer to some imaginary idyllic paradise, immortalized by Virgil's Eclogues, by Jacopo Sannazaro in his pastoral masterpiece, Arcadia. After the Fourth Crusade, the area became a part of the Principality of Achaea, but was progressively recovered by the Byzantine Greeks of the Despotate of the Morea from the 1260s on, a process, completed in 1320; the region fell into the hands of the Ottoman Turks in 1460. With the exception of a period of Venetian rule in 1687–1715, the region remained under Turkish control until 1821; the Latin phrase Et in Arcadia ego, interpreted to mean "Even in Arcadia there am I", is an example of memento mori, a cautionary reminder of the transitory nature of life and the inevitability of death. The phrase is most associated with a 1647 painting by Nicolas Poussin known as "The Arcadian Shepherds".
In the painting the phrase appears as an inscription on a tomb discovered by youthful figures in classical garb. Arcadia was one of the centres of the Greek War of Independence which saw victories in their battles including one in Tripoli. After a victorious revolutionary war, Arcadia was incorporated into the newly created Greek state. Arcadia saw small emigration. In the 20th century, Arcadia experienced extensive population loss through emigration to the Americas. Many Arcadian villages lost half their inhabitants, fears arose that they would turn into ghost towns. Arcadia now has a smaller population than Corinthia. Demographers expected that its population would halve between the early 21st century; the population has fallen to 87,000 in 2011. An earthquake measuring 5.9 on the Richter magnitude scale shook Megalopoli and the surrounding area in 1965. Large numbers of buildings were destroyed. Within a couple of years, the buildings were rebuilt anti-seismically; this earthquake revealed an underground source of lignite in the area, in 1967 construction began on the Megalopoli Power Plant, which began operating in 1970.
The mining area south of the plant is the largest mining area in the peninsula and continues to the present day with one settlement moved. In July and August 2007 forest fires caused damage in Arcadia, notably in the mountains. In 2008, a theory proposed by classicist Christos Mergoupis suggested that the mummified remains of Alexander the Great, may in fact be located in Gortynia-Arkadia, in the Peloponnese of Greece. Since 2008, this research is ongoing and being conducted in Greece; the research was first mentioned on CNN International in May 2008. When, during the Greek Dark Ages, Doric Greek was introduced to the Peloponnese, the older Arcadocypriot Greek language survived in Arcadia. Arcadocypriot never became a literary dialect. Tsan is a letter of the Greek alphabet occurring only in Arcadia, shaped like Cyrillic И; the Tsakonian language, still spoken on the coast of modern Arcadia, is a descendant of Doric Greek, as such is an extraordinary example of a surviving regional dialect of Greek.
The principal cities of Tsakonia are the Arcadian coastal towns of Tyros. The regional unit Arcadia is subdivided into 5 municipalities; these are: Gortynia Megalopoli North Kynouria South Kynouria Tripoli As a part of the 2011 Kallikratis government reform, the regional unit Arcadia was created out of the former prefecture Arcadia. The prefecture had the same territory as the present regional unit. At the same time, the municipalities were reorganised, according to the table below. Arcadia was divided into four provinces: Province of Gortynia—Dimitsana Province of Kynouria—Leonidio Province of Mantineia—Tripolis Province of Megalopoli—MegalopolisNote: Provinces no longer hold any legal status in Greece; the main towns in modern Arcadia are Tripoli, Vytina, Lagkadia, Leonidio, Levidi and Stemnitsa. Ancient cities include Acacesium, Astros, Daseae, Gortys, Heraia, Lykaio, Lycos
The Greco-Persian Wars were a series of conflicts between the Achaemenid Empire and Greek city-states that started in 499 BC and lasted until 449 BC. The collision between the fractious political world of the Greeks and the enormous empire of the Persians began when Cyrus the Great conquered the Greek-inhabited region of Ionia in 547 BC. Struggling to rule the independent-minded cities of Ionia, the Persians appointed tyrants to rule each of them; this would prove to be the source of much trouble for the Persians alike. In 499 BC, the tyrant of Miletus, embarked on an expedition to conquer the island of Naxos, with Persian support; this was the beginning of the Ionian Revolt, which would last until 493 BC, progressively drawing more regions of Asia Minor into the conflict. Aristagoras secured military support from Athens and Eretria, in 498 BC these forces helped to capture and burn the Persian regional capital of Sardis; the Persian king Darius the Great vowed to have revenge on Eretria for this act.
The revolt continued, with the two sides stalemated throughout 497–495 BC. In 494 BC, the Persians regrouped, attacked the epicentre of the revolt in Miletus. At the Battle of Lade, the Ionians suffered a decisive defeat, the rebellion collapsed, with the final members being stamped out the following year. Seeking to secure his empire from further revolts and from the interference of the mainland Greeks, Darius embarked on a scheme to conquer Greece and to punish Athens and Eretria for the burning of Sardis; the first Persian invasion of Greece began in 492 BC, with the Persian general Mardonius re-subjugating Thrace and Macedon before several mishaps forced an early end to the rest of the campaign. In 490 BC a second force was sent to Greece, this time across the Aegean Sea, under the command of Datis and Artaphernes; this expedition subjugated the Cyclades, before besieging and razing Eretria. However, while en route to attack Athens, the Persian force was decisively defeated by the Athenians at the Battle of Marathon, ending Persian efforts for the time being.
Darius began to plan to conquer Greece, but died in 486 BC and responsibility for the conquest passed to his son Xerxes. In 480 BC, Xerxes led the second Persian invasion of Greece with one of the largest ancient armies assembled. Victory over the allied Greek states at the famous Battle of Thermopylae allowed the Persians to torch an evacuated Athens and overrun most of Greece. However, while seeking to destroy the combined Greek fleet, the Persians suffered a severe defeat at the Battle of Salamis; the following year, the confederated Greeks went on the offensive, decisively defeating the Persian army at the Battle of Plataea, ending the invasion of Greece by the Achaemenid Empire. The allied Greeks followed up their success by destroying the rest of the Persian fleet at the Battle of Mycale, before expelling Persian garrisons from Sestos and Byzantium. Following the Persian withdrawal from Europe and the Greek victory at Mycale and the city states of Ionia regained their independence; the actions of the general Pausanias at the siege of Byzantium alienated many of the Greek states from the Spartans, the anti-Persian alliance was therefore reconstituted around Athenian leadership, called the Delian League.
The Delian League continued to campaign against Persia for the next three decades, beginning with the expulsion of the remaining Persian garrisons from Europe. At the Battle of the Eurymedon in 466 BC, the League won a double victory that secured freedom for the cities of Ionia. However, the League's involvement in the Egyptian revolt by Inaros II against Artaxerxes I resulted in a disastrous defeat, further campaigning was suspended. A Greek fleet was sent to Cyprus in 451 BC, but achieved little, when it withdrew, the Greco-Persian Wars drew to a quiet end; some historical sources suggest the end of hostilities was marked by a peace treaty between Athens and Persia, the Peace of Callias. All the primary sources for the Greco-Persian Wars are Greek. By some distance, the main source for the Greco-Persian Wars is the Greek historian Herodotus. Herodotus, called the "Father of History", was born in 484 BC in Halicarnassus, Asia Minor, he wrote his'Enquiries' around 440–430 BC, trying to trace the origins of the Greco-Persian Wars, which would still have been recent history.
Herodotus's approach was novel and, at least in Western society, he invented'history' as a discipline. As historian Tom Holland has it, "For the first time, a chronicler set himself to trace the origins of a conflict not to a past so remote so as to be utterly fabulous, nor to the whims and wishes of some god, nor to a people's claim to manifest destiny, but rather explanations he could verify personally."Some ancient historians, starting with Thucydides, criticised Herodotus and his methods. Thucydides chose to begin his history where Herodotus left off and felt Herodotus's history was accurate enough not to need re-writing or correcting. Plutarch criticised Herodotus in his essay "On The Malignity of Herodotus", describing Herodotus as "Philobarbaros" for not being pro-Greek enough, which suggests that Herodotus might have done a reasonable job of being even-handed. A negative view of Herodotus was passed on to Renaissance Europe, though he remained well re
Naousa is a village in the Cyclades. It is located in the northeastern corner of the island of Paros, it has a population of 2,870. In the summer, when it is warm and sunny every day, Naousa attracts many tourists from all around Europe because of the climate and the nearby beaches, like Kolympithres. During the winter, it is cold and snowy. In 1770–1775, during the Russo-Turkish War of 1768–1774 and the Orlov Revolt, Naousa was a Russian naval base, known in Russian as Auza, the administrative centre of Alexey Orlov's military expedition
Hvar is a Croatian island in the Adriatic Sea, located off the Dalmatian coast, lying between the islands of Brač, Vis and Korčula. 68 km long, with a high east-west ridge of Mesozoic limestone and dolomite, the island of Hvar is unusual in the area for having a large fertile coastal plain, fresh water springs. Its hillsides are covered in pine forests, with vineyards, olive groves, fruit orchards and lavender fields in the agricultural areas; the climate is characterized by mild winters, warm summers with many hours of sunshine. The island has 11,103 residents, making it the 4th most populated of the Croatian islands. Hvar's location at the center of the Adriatic sailing routes has long made this island an important base for commanding trade up and down the Adriatic, across to Italy and throughout the wider Mediterranean, it has been inhabited since pre-historic times by a Neolithic people whose distinctive pottery gave rise to the term Hvar culture, by the Illyrians. The ancient Greeks founded the colony of Pharos in 384 BC on the site of today's Stari Grad, making it one of the oldest towns in Europe.
They were responsible for setting out the agricultural field divisions of the Stari Grad Plain, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In medieval times, Hvar rose to importance within the Venetian Empire as a major naval base. Prosperity brought culture and the arts, with one of the first public theatres in Europe, nobles’ palaces and many fine communal buildings; the 16th century was an unsettled time, with the Hvar Rebellion, coastal raids by pirates and the Ottoman army from the mainland, resulting in some unusual fortified buildings on the northern shore to protect the local population. After a brief time under Napoleonic rule, the island became part of the Austrian Empire, a more peaceful and prosperous time. On the coast, harbours were expanded, quays built and boat building businesses grew. At the same time, the island's wine exports increased, along with lavender and rosemary production for the French perfume industry. However, this prosperity did not continue into the 20th century as wooden sailing boats went out of fashion, the phylloxera blight hit wine production.
Many islanders left to make a new life elsewhere. One industry, has however continued to grow and is now a significant contributor to the island's economy; the formation of The Hygienic Association of Hvar in 1868 for the assistance of visitors to the island has been instrumental in developing an infrastructure of hotels, restaurants, museums and cafés. Today, the island of Hvar is a popular destination listed in the top 10 islands by Conde Nast Traveler magazine; the island of Hvar is located off the Dalmatian coast. To the north, the island of Brač lies across the Hvar Channel, to the west is Vis, separated by the Vis Channel, to the south Korčula lies across the Korčula Channel, while the Pelješac Peninsula is across the Neretva Channel; the eastern end of Hvar is just 6 kilometres from the mainland. Along the southern coast of the island there are several smaller islands, notably the Paklinski islands at the western end and Šćedro island, while Zečevo island lies off the north coast. Hvar is a high east-west ridge of Mesozoic limestone and dolomite, part of the mainland until 11,000 years ago.
Around that time, sea levels rose, filling the valleys that are now the channels between the islands. Hvar has a typical karst landscape, which means limited or no surface water, despite adequate rainfall, which disappears into crevices in the ground. Farming in such areas requires careful conservation of water, protection of the soil against erosion; the water cisterns in the fields, the dry-stone walls terracing on the slopes are necessary for the continued success of agriculture on the island. The island has a typical Mediterranean vegetation bare with woody scrub at higher, steeper elevations, turning to pine forests on the lower slopes with Holm oak, Aleppo pines and Black pines; the islet of Šćedro is rich in various Mediterranean trees and plants. Hvar island is 68 kilometres long, only 10.5 kilometres at its widest point. It covers an area of 297 square kilometres, the 4th largest of the Adriatic islands by area, has a coastline length of 254.2 kilometres. The highest peak is Sv. Nikola, at 628 metres.
Hvar Island is part of Split-Dalmatia County in Croatia. The island has namely Hvar, Stari Grad, Jelsa and Sućuraj. Population figures from 2001. Hvar is the largest town on the island, for many years an independent commune and major naval base of the Venetian Empire. Hvar municipality includes the settlements of Brusje, Velo Grablje and Sveta Nedilja. Jelsa is a market town in the northern part of the island. Jelsa municipality includes the settlements of Gdinj, Gromin Dolac, Ivan Dolac, Svirče, Poljica, Vrisnik, Zastražišće, Zavala. Stari Grad on the north part of the island, is the site of one of the first permanent settlements on the Adriatic islands during Antiquity. Today, Stari Grad is the main seaport on the island. Stari Grad municipality includes the settlements of Dol, Rudina and Vrbanj. Sućuraj is a
For the hummingbird, see Archilochus. Archilochus was a Greek lyric poet from the island of Paros in the Archaic period, he is celebrated for his versatile and innovative use of poetic meters, is the earliest known Greek author to compose entirely on the theme of his own emotions and experiences. Alexandrian scholars included him in their canonic list of iambic poets, along with Semonides and Hipponax, yet ancient commentators numbered him with Tyrtaeus and Callinus as the possible inventor of the elegy. Modern critics characterize him as a lyric poet. Although his work now only survives in fragments, he was revered by the ancient Greeks as one of their most brilliant authors, able to be mentioned in the same breath as Homer and Hesiod, yet he was censured by them as the archetypal poet of blame—his invectives were said to have driven his former fiancée and her father to suicide, he presented himself as a man of few illusions either in war or in love, such as in the following elegy, where discretion is seen to be the better part of valour: Archilochus was much imitated up to Roman times and three other distinguished poets claimed to have thrown away their shields—Alcaeus and Horace.
A considerable amount of information about the life of Archilochus has come down to the modern age via his surviving work, the testimony of other authors and inscriptions on monuments, yet it all needs to be viewed with caution—the biographical tradition is unreliable and the fragmentary nature of the poems doesn't support inferences about his personal history. The vivid language and intimate details of the poems look autobiographical yet it is known, on the authority of Aristotle, that Archilochus sometimes role-played; the philosopher quoted two fragments as examples of an author speaking in somebody else's voice: in one, an unnamed father commenting on a recent eclipse of the sun and, in the other, a carpenter named Charon, expressing his indifference to the wealth of Gyges, the king of Lydia. There is nothing in those two fragments to suggest that Archilochus is speaking in those roles and many of his other verses involved role-playing too, it has been suggested by one modern scholar that imaginary characters and situations might have been a feature of the poetic tradition within which Archilochus composed, known by the ancients as iambus.
The two poems quoted by Aristotle help to date the poet's life. Gyges reigned 687–652 BC and the date of the eclipse must have been either 6 April 648 BC or 27 June 660 BC; these dates are consistent with other evidence of the poet's chronology and reported history, such as the discovery at Thasos of a cenotaph, dated around the end of the seventh century and dedicated to a friend named in several fragments: Glaucus, son of Leptines. The chronology for Archilochus is complex but modern scholars settle for c.680–c.640 BC. Whether or not their lives had been virtuous, authors of genius were revered by their fellow Greeks, thus a sanctuary to Archilochus was established on his home island Paros sometime in the third century BC, where his admirers offered him sacrifices, as well as to gods such as Apollo and the Muses. Inscriptions found on orthostats from the sanctuary include historical records. In one, we are told that his father Telesicles once sent Archilochus to fetch a cow from the fields, but that the boy chanced to meet a group of women who soon vanished with the animal and left him a lyre in its place—they were the Muses and they had thus earmarked him as their protégé.
According to the same inscription, the omen was confirmed by the oracle at Delphi. Not all the inscriptions are as fanciful as that; some are records by a local historian of the time, set out in chronological order according to custom, under the names of archons. These are fragmentary. Snippets of biographical information are provided by ancient authors as diverse as Tatian, Clement of Alexandria, Aelian, Galen, Dio Chrysostom, Aelius Aristides and several anonymous authors in the Palatine Anthology. See and other poets below for the testimony of some famous poets. According to tradition, Archilochus was born to a notable family on Paros, his grandfather, helped establish the cult of Demeter on Thasos near the end of the eighth century, a mission, famously depicted in a painting at Delphi by the Thasian Polygnotus. The painting described by Pausanias, showed Tellis in Hades, sharing Charon's boat with the priestess of Demeter; the poet's father, Telesicles distinguished himself in the history of Thasos, as the founder of a Parian colony there.
The names'Tellis' and'Telesicles' can have religious connotations and some modern scholars infer that the poet was born into a priestly family devoted to Demeter. Inscriptions in the Archilocheion identify Archilochus as a key figure in the Parian cult of Dionysus There is no evidence to back isolated reports that his mother was a slave, named Enipo, that he left Paros to escape poverty, or that he became a mercenary soldier—the slave background is inferred from a misreading of his verses; the life of Archilochus was
Miltiades known as Miltiades the Younger, was an Athenian citizen known for his role in the Battle of Marathon, as well as for his downfall afterwards. He was the son of Cimon Coalemos, a renowned Olympic chariot-racer, the father of Cimon, the noted Athenian statesman. Miltiades was a well-born Athenian, considered himself a member of the Aeacidae, as well as a member of the prominent Philaid clan, he came of age during the tyranny of the Peisistratids. His family was due in good part to their success with Olympic chariot-racing. Plutarch claimed that Cimon, Miltiades' father, was known as "Coalemos", meaning "simpleton", because he had a reputation for being rough around the edges, but whose three successive chariot-racing victories at the Olympics made him popular, so popular in fact that, Herodotus claims, the sons of Peisistratos murdered him out of jealousy. Miltiades was named after his father's maternal half-brother, Miltiades the Elder, a victor at Olympic chariot-racing. Miltiades's son Cimon was a major Athenian figure of the 470s and 460s BC.
His daughter Elpinice is remembered for her confrontations with Pericles. Around 555 BC, Miltiades the Elder left Athens to establish a colony on the Thracian Chersonese, setting himself up as a semi-autonomous tyrant under the protection of Athens. Meanwhile, contrary to what one would expect from a man whose father was rumoured to have been murdered by the city leaders, Miltiades the Younger rose through the ranks of Athens to become eponymous archon under the rule of the Peisistratid tyrant Hippias in 524/23 BC. Miltiades the Elder was childless, so when he died around 520 BC, his nephew, Miltiades the Younger's brother, inherited the tyranny of the Chersonese. Four years Stesagoras met his death by an axe to the head, so the tyrant Hippias sent Miltiades the Younger to claim his brother's lands. Stesagoras' reign had been full of war and revolt. Wishing to achieve stronger control over his lands than his brother had, Miltiades feigned mourning for his brother's death; when the men of rank from the Chersonese came to console him, he imprisoned them.
He ensured his power by employing 500 troops. He made an alliance with King Olorus of Thrace by marrying his daughter, Hegesipyle. In around 513 BC, Darius I, the king of Persia, led a large army into the area, forcing the Thracian Chersonese into submission and making Miltiades a vassal of Persian rule. Miltiades joined Darius' northern expedition against the Scythians, was left with other Greek officers to guard a bridge across the Danube, which Darius had used to cross into Scythia. Miltiades claimed that he had tried to convince the other officers to destroy the bridge and leave Darius and his forces to die, but the others were afraid, Darius was able to recross, though some historians are skeptical of this claim; when the king heard of the planned sabotage, Miltiades' rule became a perilous affair and he had to flee around 511/510 BC. Miltiades joined the Ionian Revolt of 499 BC against Persian rule, returning to the Chersonese around 496 BC, he established friendly relations with Athens by capturing the islands of Lemnos and Imbros and ceding them to Athens, which had ancient claims to these lands.
The Ionian Revolt collapsed in 494 BC, in 492 BC Miltiades and his family fled to Athens in five ships to escape a retaliatory Persian invasion. The Athens to which Miltiades returned was no longer a tyranny, but had overthrown the Peisistratids and become a democracy 15 years earlier. Thus, Miltiades faced a hostile reception for his tyrannical rule in the Thracian Chersonese, his trial was further complicated by the politics of his aristocratic rivals and the general Athenian mistrust of a man accustomed to unfettered authority. However, Miltiades presented himself as a defender of Greek freedoms against Persian despotism, he promoted the fact that he had been a first-hand witness to Persian tactics, useful knowledge considering the Persians were bent on destroying the city. Thus, Miltiades was allowed to rejoin his old countrymen, it was by Miltiades' advice that the Persian heralds who came to Athens to demand earth and water as tokens of submission were put to death. Miltiades is credited with devising the tactics that defeated the Persians at the Battle of Marathon.
Miltiades was elected to serve as one of the ten generals for 490 BC. In addition to the ten generals, there was one'war-ruler', who had to decide—with the ten generals evenly split, five to five—whether to attack the Persians who had landed at Marathon under the command of Datis, or wait to fight them closer to Athens. Miltiades, the one with the most experience in fighting the Persians, was firm in insisting that the Persians be fought as a siege of Athens would lead to its destruction, he convinced Callimachus to use his decisive vote in favor of a swift attack. He is quoted as saying "I believe that, provided the Gods will give fair play and no favour, we are able to get the best of it in the engagement."Miltiades convinced the other generals of the necessity of not using the customary tactics of using hoplites arrayed in an evenly distributed phalanx armed with shields and spears, tactics otherwise not deviated from for 100 years, until the time of Epaminondas. Miltiades feared the cavalry of the Persians attacking the flanks, asked for more hoplites to be stationed there than in the centre.
He ordered the two tribes in the centre, the Leontis tribe led by Themistocles and the Antiochis tribe led by Aristides
A trireme was an ancient vessel and a type of galley, used by the ancient maritime civilizations of the Mediterranean the Phoenicians, ancient Greeks and Romans. The trireme derives its name from its three rows of oars, manned with one man per oar; the early trireme was a development of the penteconter, an ancient warship with a single row of 25 oars on each side, of the bireme, a warship with two banks of oars, of Phoenician origin. The word dieres does not appear until the Roman period. According to Morrison and Williams, "It must be assumed the term pentekontor covered the two-level type"; as a ship it was fast and agile, it was the dominant warship in the Mediterranean during the 7th to 4th centuries BC, after which it was superseded by the larger quadriremes and quinqueremes. Triremes played a vital role in the Persian Wars, the creation of the Athenian maritime empire, its downfall in the Peloponnesian War; the term is sometimes used to refer to medieval and early modern galleys with three files of oarsmen per side as triremes.
Depictions of two-banked ships, with or without the parexeiresia, are common in 8th century BC and vases and pottery fragments, it is at the end of that century that the first references to three-banked ships are found. Fragments from an 8th-century relief at the Assyrian capital of Nineveh depicting the fleets of Tyre and Sidon show ships with rams, fitted with oars pivoted at two levels, they have been interpreted as two-decked warships, as triremes. Modern scholarship is divided on the provenance of the trireme, Greece or Phoenicia, the exact time it developed into the foremost ancient fighting ship. Clement of Alexandria in the 2nd century, drawing on earlier works, explicitly attributes the invention of the trireme to the Sidonians. According to Thucydides, the trireme was introduced to Greece by the Corinthians in the late 8th century BC, the Corinthian Ameinocles built four such ships for the Samians; this was interpreted by writers and Diodorus, to mean that triremes were invented in Corinth, the possibility remains that the earliest three-banked warships originated in Phoenicia.
Herodotus mentions that the Egyptian pharaoh Necho II built triremes on the Nile, for service in the Mediterranean, in the Red Sea, but this reference is disputed by modern historians, attributed to a confusion, since "triērēs" was by the 5th century used in the generic sense of "warship", regardless its type. The first definite reference to the use of triremes in naval combat dates to ca. 525 BC, according to Herodotus, the tyrant Polycrates of Samos was able to contribute 40 triremes to a Persian invasion of Egypt. Thucydides meanwhile states that in the time of the Persian Wars, the majority of the Greek navies consisted of penteconters and ploia makrá. In any case, by the early 5th century, the trireme was becoming the dominant warship type of the eastern Mediterranean, with minor differences between the "Greek" and "Phoenician" types, as literary references and depictions of the ships on coins make clear; the first large-scale naval battle where triremes participated was the Battle of Lade during the Ionian Revolt, where the combined fleets of the Greek Ionian cities were defeated by the Persian fleet, composed of squadrons from their Phoenician, Carian and Egyptian subjects.
Athens was at that time embroiled in a conflict with the neighbouring island of Aegina, which possessed a formidable navy. In order to counter this, with an eye at the mounting Persian preparations, in 483/2 BC the Athenian statesman Themistocles used his political skills and influence to persuade the Athenian assembly to start the construction of 200 triremes, using the income of the newly discovered silver mines at Laurion; the first clash with the Persian navy was at the Battle of Artemisium, where both sides suffered great casualties. However, the decisive naval clash occurred at Salamis, where Xerxes' invasion fleet was decisively defeated. After Salamis and another Greek victory over the Persian fleet at Mycale, the Ionian cities were freed, the Delian League was formed under the aegis of Athens; the predominance of Athens turned the League into an Athenian Empire. The source and foundation of Athens' power was her strong fleet, composed of over 200 triremes, it not only secured control of the Aegean Sea and the loyalty of her allies, but safeguarded the trade routes and the grain shipments from the Black Sea, which fed the city's burgeoning population.
In addition, as it provided permanent employment for the city's poorer citizens, the fleet played an important role in maintaining and promoting the radical Athenian form of democracy. Athenian maritime power is the first example of thalassocracy in world history. Aside from Athens, other major naval powers of the era included Syracuse and Corinth. In the subsequent Peloponnesian War, naval battles fought by triremes were crucial in the power balance between Athens and Sparta. Despite numerous land engagements, Athens was defeated through the destruction of her fleet during the Sicilian Expedition, at the Battle of Aegospotami, at the hands of Sparta and her allies. Based on all archeological evidence, the design of the trireme most pushed the technological limits of the ancient world. After gathering the proper timbers and materials it was time to consider the fundamentals of the trireme design; these fundamentals inclu