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The Battle of Salamis

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss The Battle of Salamis, 480BC, often called one of the most significant battles in history, in which the Greek fleet defeated the Persians.

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss what is often called one of the most significant battles in history. In 480BC in the Saronic Gulf near Athens, between the mainland and the island of Salamis, a fleet of Greek allies decisively defeated a larger Persian-led fleet. This halted the further Persian conquest of Greece and, at Plataea and Mycale the next year, further Greek victories brought Persian withdrawal and the immediate threat of conquest to an end. To the Greeks, this enabled a flourishing of a culture that went on to influence the development of civilisation in Rome and, later, Europe and beyond. To the Persians, it was a reverse at the fringes of their vast empire but not a threat to their existence, as it was for the Greek states, and attention turned to quelling unrest elsewhere.


Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones
Professor in Ancient History at Cardiff University

Lindsay Allen
Lecturer in Greek and Near Eastern History, King's College London


Paul Cartledge
Emeritus Professor of Greek Culture and AG Leventis Senior Research Fellow at Clare College, University of Cambridge

Producer: Simon Tillotson.

Available now

50 minutes

Last on

Thu 23 Mar 2017 21:30


Paul Cartledge at the University of Cambridge

Lindsay Allen at King's College London

Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones at Cardiff University

Battle of Salamis - Wikipedia



Lindsay Allen, The Persian Empire: A History (British Museum Press, 2005)

Pierre Briant, From Cyrus to Alexander: A History of the Persian Empire (Eisenbrauns, 2003)

George Cawkwell, The Greek Wars: The Failure of Persia (Oxford University Press, 2005)

Thomas Harrison, The Emptiness of Asia: Aeschylus’ ‘Persians’ and the History of the Fifth Century (Bloomsbury, 2000)

Herodotus (trans. Tom Holland, introduced by Paul Cartledge), The Histories (Penguin, 2013)

Tom Holland, Persian Fire: The First World Empire and the Battle for the West (Abacus, 2006)

Amelie Kuhrt, The Persian Empire: A Corpus of Sources from the Achaemenid Period (Routledge, 2007)

Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones, King and Court in Ancient Persia 559 to 331 BCE (Edinburgh University Press, 2013)

Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones & James Robson, Ctesias’ History of Persia: Tales of the Orient (Routledge, 2012)

J. S. Morrison, J. E. Coates & N. B. Rankov, The Athenian Trireme: The History and Reconstruction of an Ancient Greek Warship (Cambridge University Press, 2000)

Jennifer T. Roberts, Herodotus: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2011)

Barry Strauss, The Battle of Salamis: The Naval Encounter that Saved Greece - and Western Civilization (Simon & Schuster, 2005)

Christopher Tuplin, Achaemenid Studies (Franz Steiner Verlag Wiesbaden GmbH, 1996)


Role Contributor
Presenter Melvyn Bragg
Interviewed Guest Lindsay Allen
Interviewed Guest Paul Cartledge
Interviewed Guest Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones
Producer Simon Tillotson


  • Thu 23 Mar 2017 09:00
  • Thu 23 Mar 2017 21:30

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