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marathon, battle of

marathon, battle of in Culture

Marathon, Battle of definition

A famous battle in the fifth century b.c., in which the ancient Greeks defeated a much larger army of the Persian Empire.

Note: According to legend, news of the victory was carried to Athens from the plain of Marathon, a distance of about twenty-six miles, by a messenger who collapsed and died of exhaustion after delivering his message. The distance of the modern marathon foot race is based on this legend.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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