History of Xerxes the Great

History of Xerxes the Great

by Jacob Abbott

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Overview

The story of Xerxes the Great (circa 519-465 BC), the fourth king of the Persian Achaemenid Empire, includes the battles of Thermopylæ and Salamis, famous in their own right-and which were pivotal to world and European history.The tale, woven by classic master storyteller Jacob Abbott is, as usual, free from the dry stuffiness which mars conventional historical accounts. Beginning with Xerxes' family background, the action starts straightaway with his interactions with Egypt and Greece, and the preparations for the invasion of that latter nation.Abbott's narration, based on meticulous research and primary sources, reveals the immense size of the Persian army, and that their ultimate intention was to conquer all of Europe.The Greek defensive preparations-spearheaded by the astonishing Spartans-are then reviewed. The mighty clash-and sacrifice-of the main Persian force and the 300 Spartans under Leonidas at Thermopylæ forms one of the centerpieces of the work.It is followed by the equally important burning of Athens and the Battle of Salamis, where the Persian fleet was destroyed.Finally, faced with stalemate in Greece and rebellion at home, Xerxes was forced to return to Persia. His army, routed at the Battle of Platæa, followed him home, and the Persian attempt to seize Europe was definitively defeated."The name of Xerxes is associated in the minds of men with the idea of the highest attainable elevation of human magnificence and grandeur. This monarch was the sovereign of the ancient Persian Empire when it was at the height of its prosperity and power."It is probable, however, that his greatness and fame lose nothing by the manner in which his story comes down to us through the Greek historians. The Greeks conquered Xerxes, and, in relating his history, they magnify the wealth, the power, and the resources of his empire, by way of exalting the greatness and renown of their own exploits in subduing him."Cover image: Detail from Wilhelm von Kaulbach's Die Seeschlacht bei Salamis (1868).CONTENTSChapter I: The Mother of XerxesChapter II: Egypt and GreeceChapter III: Debate on the Proposed Invasion of GreeceChapter IV: Preparations for the Invasion of GreeceChapter V: Crossing the HellespontChapter VI: The Review of the Troops at DoriscusChapter VII: Preparations of the Greeks for DefenseChapter VIII: The Advance of Xerxes into GreeceChapter IX: The Battle of ThermopylæChapter X: The Burning of AthensChapter XI: The Battle of SalamisChapter XII: The Return of Xerxes to Persia

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781389664212
Publisher: Blurb
Publication date: 02/28/2021
Pages: 166
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.35(d)

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