Monday, 8 June 2020

25th century since the Battle of Thermopylae

Greece marks the 25th century since the Battle of Thermopylae with a circulating commemorative €2 coin. 735,000 coins are being issued for circulation.
The Battle of Thermopylae was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by King Leonidas of Sparta, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes I over the course of three days, during the second Persian invasion of Greece. It took place with the naval battle at Artemisium, in August or September 480BC, at the narrow coastal pass of Thermopylae. The Persian invasion was a response to the defeat of the first Persian invasion of Greece, which had been ended by the Athenian victory at the Battle of Marathon in 490BC.
By 480 BC Xerxes amassed a huge army and navy, and set out to conquer Greece. The vastly outnumbered Greeks held off the Persians for seven days before the rear-guard was annihilated in one of history's most famous last stands. It has become a symbol of courage against hopeless odds.