Greco-Persian Wars (jan 1, 499 BC – aug 7, 449 BC)
A major Greek colony on the coast of Anatolia had been under Persian subjugation since the 540s BCE, but now after suffering decades of tyrannical rule from Persian governors, the city of Ionia rebelled against the Achaemenid King Darius the Great in 499 BCE. Over the next year, the Greek city of Athens sent over forces to aid with the rebellion and soon the Ionians captured cities such as Sardis and Byzantium. Revolts spread throughout the colonies, aided by the Greek forces from the home cities until King Darius decided he would make all of Greece submit to Persian rule. This was the beginning of the Greco-Persian Wars.
The first invasion began in 492 BCE and the Persians managed to subjugate Thrace and Macedon. Six years later Darius died and his son Xerxes continued the war leading a second invasion in 480 BCE where they torched an evacuated Athens. After suffering a severe defeat at the Battle of Salamis however, the Greeks began to have the upper hand and went on the offensive. The battles between the Greek city-states and the Achaemenid Persian Empire would continue on throughout Greece for another 31 years.
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