Marathon Archaeological Site(Μαραθώνας)




Location: Attica Map

Battle site: 490 BC



Tel. (22940) 55155

Closed: Mondays


Description of the Marathon Archaeological Site

Marathon Battle MapMarathon Archaeological Site is located in the Attica region in Greece. Marathon became famous as battle site between 25,000 Persians and 10,000 Athenian soldier in 490 BC. Persian king Darius I marched across modern Greece to Attica where he planned to destroy the collective force of the Greek city- states. Under leadership of two Persian generals Datis and Artaphernes his massive army took a lowland position. Greek soldiers on the other held higher a ground under leadership of Militiades who accepted a title of strategos or a general. His soldiers encircled the Persian troops who had their backs against Aegean Sea and could not maneuver. Athenians defeated their enemies with only 192 dead on their side. Although the numbers might be greatly underestimated, but one thing is for certain. Greek army defeated their army with minimal losses on their side. One of the soldiers, Phedippides, ran approximately 42 km (26 miles) back to Athens in full armour and after screaming "Nenīkēkamen" or "we have won" fell dead from exertion. Other historians give another name to the famous runner as Thersipus of Erchius or Eucles. This legendary feat gave life to modern Marathon runs. Greeks commemorate their victory every year in October during Athens Open International Marathon then athletes ran (without armor) from Marathon to Athens using approximately the same route as the ancient hero did. The battleā€™s fallen heroes are buried in the burial mounds (Τύμβος or tymbos) that are 10 meters (33 feet) high and 180 meters (580 feet) in circumference. Additionally the ancients erected an Ionian Column on the site of the battle. Today the remains of the original column are stored in the Marathon Museum. A new one was constructed on a place of the old one. It is located 4 km (2.5 mi) from the modern city. You also can visit Archeological Museum in Marathon. A large mount that is behind the museum is a burial of 11 Plataians, allies of Athens, who also fought in the battle against the Persians. Unfortunately for the hero of the battle, general Militiades, was later accused of using Athenian fleet for his own personal power. He was sent to prison where he died in 486 BC, just four years after his crucial over a common enemy.


Battle of Marathon
The Battle of Marathon (Ancient Greek Battle of Marathon), which took place in August or September 490 BC, is a conflict between the Greeks (Athenians and Plataeans) and the Persians during the first Persian invasion of Greece.

After the failure of the Ionian Revolution, Darius gathered great strength to avenge Athens and Eretria, which had helped the Ionians during the Ionian Revolution. In 492 BC, he sent a force, under the leadership of Mardonius but the Persian fleet was destroyed by a storm sailing to Mount Athos. Finally in 490 BC, under the command of Datis and Artafernes, the Persian army occupied the Cyclades, destroyed Eretria and encamped at Marathon, where they were confronted by a force of Athenians and Plataeans. The battle ended in a decisive victory for the Greeks - due to Miltiades' military genius - and the Persians were forced to flee to Asia.

The battle of Marathon showed the Greeks that they could defeat the Persians. According to modern historians and scholars, it is one of the most important moments in the history of mankind.