Themistocles

Life

  • Born as an ordinary Athenian citizen (rose to influence through personal qualities)
  • Lived ~524‒460 BC
  • After Miltiades dies, Aristides and him are left as rival political leaders
    • He succeeds in having Aristides ostracized (he later reconciles with him)
  • Elected as archon in 482 BC
    • Convinces Athens to build a navy of 200 ships and fortify harbor

Persian Wars

  • Admiral in naval battle of Atemisium and Salamis

Ostracization

  • In 476 BC, charges of bribery and corruption are levied against him
  • He is ostracized and retires to Argos
  • Spartans levy more charges against him
  • He goes into Asia Minor and dies in exile