'Go tell the Spartans, Passerby,
That here, obedient to their laws, we lie'
Thus did the poet Simonides remember the three hundred elite Spartan warriors who, led by their king, Leonidas, faced the vast, inrushing Persian army at the ‘hot gates’ of Thermopylae and fought to the death for an ideal dearer to them than life itself – the ideal of freedom. Paul Cartledge’s offers a compelling re-examination of this crucial moment in history, a epic clash of civilizations that helped shape the identity of Classical Greece and our own cultural heritage.
‘Our greatest living expert on Sparta tells the story of that fearsome city’s finest hour. The result is a book that wonderfully demonstrates the capacity of profound scholarship to thrill, to move and to inspire’ Tom Holland, author of Rubicon and Persian Fire
‘The world's leading authority on ancient Sparta’ Noel Malcolm, Sunday Telegraph
Paul Cartledge, Professor of Greek History at the University of Cambridge, is the author of The Spartans and Alexander the Great, both critically acclaimed and out in Pan paperback. He has written and edited many articles, including Spartan Reflections, and has acted as academic consultant on The Greeks: Crucible of Civilization for the BBC and The Spartans for Channel 4.