Tag Archives: marathon

Galileo & Pheidippides

I’m thinking about using this image to promote The Western Civ User’s Guide to Time & Space.

It’s Galileo, who invented the pendulum clock, and the Greek hero Pheidippides, who ran 26 miles from Marathon to Athens with news of victory over the Persians.

Back to the beginning of The Western Civ User’s Guide to Time & Space.

Marathon

One of the important battles in the wars between the Greeks and Persians took place on the Plains of Marathon. Herodotus tells about how in 490 bc, when the Greeks were seriously outnumbered, a messenger named Pheidippides (Fay DIP e deez) ran from Athens to Sparta to get their help. Then he ran to Marathon to join the fight, THEN ran back to Athens to tell everybody that the Greeks won.

Around the world we still celebrate Pheidippides’ heroic run in races called marathons. If you run a marathon, it’s 26 miles and 385 yards—the distance from the Plains of Marathon to Athens. The very fastest runners have done it in a little over 2 hours!