Greco-Persian Navy War

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During the Greco-Persian war (500 B.C. - 449 B.C), many battles took place in this bloody war. Battles were fought on land and at sea. Sea battles played a major role during the war. The Athenian Fleet was among the most sophisticated and powerful navies to date that time. The Persian Armada seemed unbeatable with its vast number of ships and soldiers. The Athenian Navy had a higher kill ratio than the massive Persian Fleet.

The Persians and the Athenians both used that same type of ship for sea battles, the trireme. A trireme was warship used in ancient civilizations. They were wooden ships powered by mostly men with oars. The strucural integrity of these ships was remarkable. The average trireme with a length of 120 ft. could hold about 40 tons. These ships weighed about 2,200 pounds. The hull was composed of small yet dense planks held together by interlinking edges. Due to their inovative design these vessels were able to reach top speed reaching almost 10 mph.

In the front of the vessel was the primary armament of the ship, the bronze battering ram. The secondary armament included spearmen and bowmen. The two main tactics of naval warfare during ancient times were boarding or ramming. When boarding, the oarsmen on one boat would board the enemy boat and fight to the death. When raming, you would manuever around enemy and strike the enemy ships from the side in order to sink their ships. The Athenian generals were highly effective with their tactics. The Battle of Salamis

Like the Battle of Thermopylae, the Greeks were largely outnumbered in the Battle of Salamis. They faced an overwhelmingly large number of Persian ships. The Athenian Fleet Force included according to Herodotus, 366 triremes. The Persian Armada however, included 1,207 triremes. The Athenians were facing a seemingly unstopable force. However, in middle 480 B.C, a storm arose and destroyed one third of Darius’s fleet.

The Greeks had two commnaders, Themistocles of Athens and...
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