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Ancient Wars

Who was the man that ran from Marathon to Athens to tell the victory?


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September 25, 2012 2:43AM

A common story is that it was Philippides, however he was dead by then, having been sent to Sparta to summon their assistance, and came back hallucinating and died from the stress of the 120 km run.

After the battle, the Athenians realised that the Persian cavalry had been embarked and was being rowed around the Sunion peninsula to then gallop up and take Athens with traitors opening the gates of the city for them. The Athenian army ran the 26 miles over the hills with their armour and weapons to form up in front of the city just as the Persian cavalry was disembarking. The Persians, having lost their infantry, and frustrated in their next attempt, went home.

So the direct answer to the question is 9,000 warriors ran from Marathon to Athens.

This mass run was the origin of the Marathon race. Runners today get it pretty easy without the shields, armour, weapons and sandals of the first runners.