Salamis: The Battle That Saved Western Culture In 480 B.C., a powerful Persian armada attacked the Greek navy at Salamis, an island off Athens. In his book The Battle of Salamis, historian Barry Strauss makes a case that the Greeks' surprising victory assured the survival of Western civilization. He talks to NPR's Brian Naylor.
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Salamis: The Battle That Saved Western Culture

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Salamis: The Battle That Saved Western Culture

Salamis: The Battle That Saved Western Culture

Book Details Decisive Clash Between Ancient Persians, Greeks

Salamis: The Battle That Saved Western Culture

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/3489001/3494083" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Hear an Extended Interview with Author Barry Strauss

Only Available in Archive Formats.

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In 480 B.C., a powerful Persian armada attacked a Greek fleet at Salamis, an island off Athens. But the Greek city states set aside differences and banded together to repel the invaders in an epic battle involving a thousand ships. In his book The Battle of Salamis historian Barry Strauss argues that the Greek victory did no less than assure the survival of Western civilization.

The in-depth military history serves to reinforce the battle's pivotal reputation. The aggressive Persian Empire was a threat to the world's first democracy and the defeat stopped its advance cold. And following the battle, the Greeks started their own ascent to empire from the newly triumphant capital of Athens.

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