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2nd Persian Invasion Persia under the rule of King Xerxes was preparing for revenge on Athens The defeat they had suffered in 490BC at Marathon was a thorn in their side Xerxes father Darius had begun the planning of this invasion and after he died it became Xerxes number one priority Little did he know that he was going to be outclassed at every move although the Greeks were heavily outnumbered The exact numbers of each side are unknown as Herodotus our major source is prone to exaggeration Many factors gave the Greeks an advantage The union of the states the superiority of the soldiers at one-on-one combat the strength of the naval fleet and the fact that the battles took place on Greek soil were all points in the Greeks favour Afterwards they stated that they were free men not forced to fight and this was the reason for victory one man could see all these advantages and put them to good use He was once told you are going to be a great man one way or the other either for good or evil 1 Themistocles was a man who showed an unmistakable natural genius He was particularly remarkable at looking into the future and seeing there the hidden possibilities for good or evil To sum him up in a few words it may be said that through force of genius and by rapidity of action this man was supreme at doing precisely the right thing at precisely the right moment 2 Themistocles was held in high regard in Athens enough to be chosen archon in 493 BC After the Battle of Marathon in 490 BC Athens was sure that the Persian threat was over Themistocles was not as confident He wanted to build more ships for the Athenian Navy with the profits from the silver mines at Laurion The Athenians believing that the Persian forces
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