The battle of Thermopylai, although a glorious event, was ultimately a defeat that allowed the Persian king Xerxes and his vast army to march south and raze Athens. Later, a brilliant naval victory led by the Athenian Themistokles, checked the Persian advance into Greece, but failed to dislodge the invaders. One year later, a combined Greek force led by Sparta confronted the Persians outside the small town of Plataea. The opposing armies counted in the tens of thousands. For over week they shifted and manuevered, trying to gain any advantage until dwindling supplies and threats of treachery forced action. Here a company of Spartan hoplites under the command of Amompharetos showed the ancient world why Sparta produced the supreme warrior.
Below is a view of the Persian lines from Plataea.