“The entire nature strives for the survival”
The aristocrats – the representatives of the nobility, having, as a rule, the highest titles and achievements of one generation. In Europe, in Russia, to a lesser extent in Asia and America, they have left a bright trace in the memory of mankind.
Military commanders and diplomats, favorites, and political adventurers, often reformers and freedom fighters, figures of science and culture, patrons, one way or the other aristocrats have contributed to history. In their life sometimes judged of entire countries and eras. We begin a series of publications about 100 great Aristocrats of Europe.
The Athenian General and politician.
Kimon 510-449 BC – the great military and political leader of Athens during the Persian wars.
Cimon came from an aristocratic family through both parents. His father, Miltiades, belonged to the genus Philaidae . After the death of his brother Stesagera Miltiades inherited all his fortune and power in the Chersonese.
Here, becoming a tyrant, he was forced to submit to the Persian king Darius and the Persian fleet was involved with their ships in the expedition against the Scythians. Miltiades did not want to surrender to the Persians, and when the opportunity came to destroy them, he proposed to destroy the bridge over the Istra (Danube), to condemn the Persians to the death. But his proposal was not supported, and the intentions of Miltiades became known to Darius. To avoid punishment, Miltiades fled Chersonese.
In 500 BC, he supported the revolt of the Greeks against Persian rule and conquered the island of Lemnos, who conveyed to Athens. The rebellion was soon suppressed, and Miltiades again had to flee from the Persians in Athens. There he was tried for the harsh treatment of the Athenians in the Chersonese, but later acquitted. And when 100 thousand Persians invaded Attica (490 BC), Miltiades was elected one of the nine military commanders for war against Darius.
He became the de facto leader of the Athenian army and inflicted a crushing defeat on the Persians at Marathon. The following year he opposed the Islands, joined the Persians, but this trip was for him a failure. After a month long siege of Paros island, he was forced to return to Athens without the fame and empty vessels.
Cimon suffered the first setback on the island of Paros.
Miltiades political opponents accused him of abusing the public trust that the law was punishable by death. At the court of Miltiades was taken to the bed, as he received the wounds did not allow him to walk. To say he could not, for it was due to friends. Still merit Miltiades had been ignored, and the decision of the court he had to pay a fine of 50 talents – the cost of an unsuccessful campaign. To pay such a large sum he could not and so was imprisoned in debt house, where he died.
Mother Cimon was the daughter of the Thracians king Olorus – Hegesipyle. Along this line, Cimon was in relationship to the Greek historian Thucydides.
In his youth, Cimon was not irreproachable conduct and in his hometown, according to Plutarch, was infamous. Poverty was not given the opportunity to find a Kimono for his sister Elpinice husband, who would meet her social status. Sometime later, one of the Athenian rich, Kelly, offered himself as a husband to Elpinice and it was obliged to pay a fine.
Cimon gave his consent and the duty of the family was shot. Military experience Cimon had acquired during the lifetime of his father, when he participated with him in the campaigns. He fought in the battle of Salamis in 480 B.C., and his determination and courage were noted. And two years later had command of Cimon the Athenian squadron of common Greece kitchen fleet.
In 478 BC, Cimon helped the Athenian commander Aristide to achieve control over the States, recently liberated from Persian rule. Cimon actively fought for the creation of the Athenian Maritime Union and every year he was elected General. He managed to uncover a conspiracy Spartan commander Pausanias, leading negotiations with the Persians. Pausanias was expelled from Byzantium.
Cimon was in relationship to the Greek historian Thucydides.
In 470 BC, Cimon was led by the Athenian fleet and continued to fight with the Persians. Going with a fleet of 300 ships in Asia Minor, Cimon forced the province of Caria and Lycia to abandon the Persians. In the battle of Cyprus Cimon defeated the Persian fleet, and crossing in Pamphylia, we landed at the mouth of the river Eurymedon, where dealt a major blow to the Persian army.
Then he drove the Persians conquered several Islands and brought military action in Egypt. Initially Kimono with success, but then the king Besus gathered a large fleet blocked the fleet of the Kimono on the Nile river, and relegating the water, put the Greek ships aground. Then Cimon burned the ships and ready for a desperate defense, forced the Persians to accept peace.
After the Greco-Persian wars Cimon was engaged in a policy of rapprochement with Sparta for greater elevation of Athens. But this policy was directly opposite to that which was held by Pericles and his supporters. In 465-463 BC, Cimon captured the island of Thassos which was famous for its wealth.
Thassos decided to withdraw from the Athenian Alliance, but Cimon defeated the island fleet and severely punished the inhabitants of the island. And now Pericles decided to use this incident to undermine the credibility of the Kimono. The leaders of the democratic party accused the Kimono that he had not moved his forces against the king of Macedonia, who had the support of Thassos.
Cimon was engaged in a policy of rapprochement of Athens with Sparta.
Thank Cimon at that time was still very high and he was able to defend himself, although his position is still slightly shaken.
In 462 BC, Sparta asked Athens to help the fight against the rebels. Help Sparta was sent a detachment of 400 men led by Cimon. With the arrival of the detachment in Sparta situation has not changed, that has led the Spartans to suspect the Athenians in the betrayal, and the Athenian garrison was ordered to leave again. In Athens, it was seen as an insult, and popularity of Kimono, which called for a friendship with Sparta, came to an end.
In 460 BC, Cimon was banished from Athens for ten years. The war between Athens and Sparta led the Kimono in the ranks of the Athenian troops. He asked me to allow him to take part in the decisive battle, but was refused. Athens lost the battle, many close friends Cimon had been killed in battle. And then again, public opinion turned in favor of Cimon.
Famous statesman Pericles helped Cimon to return from exile.
Pericles himself had invited him to return from exile to the expiration of its term. Returning, Cimon was to gain peace with Sparta, and when peace was made, he was given command of a large fleet.
Standing at the head of the fleet, Cimon continued the war against the Persians. He again defeated the Persian fleet at Cyprus and the Persian army in Cilicia. He forced Besus to go to conclusion extremely beneficial for the Greek world. By its terms, the Persians were obliged to release all the Greek cities in Asia Minor, not a single warship of the Persians was not supposed to be shown in the space between Pontоs and Pamphylia, and the troops of the Persians were not supposed to come closer to these shores at a distance of three days of transition.
Cimon’s death was unexpected. He died during the siege of the Phoenician city of Citium in 449 BCE, and not waiting for the ratification of the Treaty. Cimon was afraid that the enemy will use his death to once again attack the Athenians. Therefore, when dying, he ordered to conceal his death until his return to Athens. Plutarch wrote about it this way:
“the Fleet returned to Athens under the leadership of Cimon, who died thirty days ago”.
“In fear and danger we are more inclined to believe in miracles”