Talk:Leonidas I

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Inconsistent date of death: 7 aug vs 11 aug[edit]

7 aug is mentioned in the text on top and 11 aug below the photo of the statue on the right —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:47, 3 April 2011 (UTC)

300 is not a historical source[edit]

There seems to have been a lot of nonsense added to this article based only on the film "300", itself based on a comic-book of the same name, which is in turn based principally on a 1962 film called "The 300 Spartans". It should go without saying, but it's not a reliable source, and people should resist embellishing the article with its dramatic flourishes: e.g. the army was 700 strong (it was 7000 - 10,000 according to Wikipedia); the Ephors conspired against Leonidas; an Oracle controlled by the Ephors (strange that they had one given that they were a governing council, not a priesthood like in the film) foretold that Leonidas would die... It is said that there were more than 300 men present at the Battle of thermopylae, (6,ooo Foot soldiers, and 1000 archers.) The the 300 were leonidas' personal guard.

All in all, the article is in poor shape at the moment, especially when contrasted with the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article

I disagree that the 300 graphic novel is based on the 1962 movie, partly because of the huge and obvious stylistic and narrative differences between them, partly Frank Miller has never said that that movie inspired him (he claims the book mostly comes from reading Herodotus as a small boy) and partly because if you know anything about Miller's other work, it's obvious that it mostly comes out of his own weird imagination and rather simple-minded clash-of-civilisations approach to the Greco-Persian Wars. Otherwise I agree that 300 the movie, though fun, is highly inaccurate and in no way to be relied on as a source, even if it does have characters speaking lines which were historically attributed to them. The article isn't all that great, though improving it will not be very difficult. I don't know why you think the Britannica article is so good. It's well written, but on Wikipedia it would barely qualify as a start-class stub. Lexo (talk) 11:19, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

A Traitor Led the Persians to...[edit]

the statement that a sparton traitor led the persian army away from the path in thermopoly set by leonidas is not a historical fact and authorities on the subject have stated that it is just speculation that there was a traitor (from the book The Greeks and the Persians). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:01, 29 September 2007 (UTC)

Go Tell the Spartans[edit]

Is this quote attributed to Leonidas in the Britannica entry? I've more commonly seen it attributed to Dienekes, a Spartan soldier at the battle.--Eric 04:28, 17 Dec 2004 (UTC)

It's by neither. It was the epigraph for the Spartan dead and was written by Simonides, a poet. When you think about it, it couldn't possibly have been written by either Leonidas or Dienekes since a.) they weren't poets and b.) they had both been killed in the battle. Lexo (talk) 11:12, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

Deleted text[edit]

The following anecdote was deleted from the article:

The Persian envoy attempted to intimidate the Spartans by telling them Xerxes had so many archers, their arrows would "darken the sun". Leonidas replied, "So much the better. We shall fight in the shade."

Anyone know why it was removed? I thought it was an interesting quote that gave some characterization to the subject. I found a description of the exchange in a published collection of miltary biographies, if it's a question of authenticity. The poster who removed it left no explanation. MK2 03:24, 10 Feb 2005 (UTC)

And now it's been removed again. As I said, I found the quote in a reasonably credible source. I have no problem with it being deleted if it's not accurate but could someone actually step in here and share the facts with the rest of us. If nothing else, the rest of the paragraph needs to be rewritten if the middle of it is removed. MK2 04:54, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The quote is misattributed. It is not a quote of Leonidas. It appears in Herodotus and is attributed to Dienekes. And it's inaccurate anyway; the story of Persian arrows darkening the sky was brought to the Greek lines by a terrified Greek villager, not a Persian envoy.--Briangotts 14:46, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)

In Frank Miller's 300 (comic book) its delivered by an Envoy dude, inaccurate, but still a great comic. Highlandlord 11:43, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

There is no historical evidence that supports any of that jarbish of fighting in the shade. but again, one heck of a film.

Well yes, if you look about 3 lines above you it was mentioned that the line comes from Herodotus.

Some of the "300" vandalism seems to be spilling over here. Just deleted a line that claimed Leonidas was a cricket player.

Request that someone removes the reference to 'wailing' in response to Leonidas death as being 'un-Spartan;' the death of a king, we are informed by Herodotus (6:58) that 'men and women together strike their foreheads with every sign of grief, wailing as if they could never stop.' The comment in the text is, most likely, a reference from Xenophon's Hellenica to the Spartan defeat, and death of King Cleombrotus, at Leuctra. Unsigned User. April 23rd 3:09 GMT. Apologies, no account.

Looks like the above edit was made. I have confirmed the quote in Herodotus 6:58 regarding the death ceremonies for kings.

In the beginning of the second paragraph after the oracle quote in the Thermoplyae section, Leonidas was refered to as "Leonidas Cacharelis". I searched the article over, but didn't see the "Cacharelis" name repeated elsewhere. That, coupled with the fact that I know quite a bit about this man and have never even heard him refered to as that, has led me to remove it. If anyone has a credible source refering to him by that name, feel free to put it back in and please link to that source here in the talk page. Spartan198 (talk) 14:56, 20 June 2008 (UTC) Spartan198

Molon Labe[edit]

I wanted to note on the page that the quote "Molon Labe" has become an increasingly popular rallying cry among the pro-gun movement, at least in the United States. It's often seen as a cry against people who attempt to pass laws that would ban the sale, or try to confiscate arms. "You want my AR15? Come get it." As I am new to wikipedia, I figured I'd be better off posting here first to get opinions from the people maintaining this page. Thanks. iygijg

IMO it has nothing to do with ancient history.Dejvid 23:15, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

The phrase, or its popularity? The phrase is attested in Plutarch's Moralia, 225.11. I agree that its adoption by people against gun control is irrelevant to the article. Lexo (talk) 10:54, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

Lord Rules[edit]

Lizard King[edit]

Ηταν ένας μεγάλος πρωτεργάτης της αντίστασης κατά των Περσών,αφού αψηφησε τρομερά το μεγαλήτερο στρατό που υπήρξε ως εκείνη την εποχή.Για τον λόγο ότι οι Σπαρτιάτες πίστευαν πολλή στην θρησκεία τους οι Βασηλία της Σπάρτης επέλεξε κάτι που δεν ήταν πολλή καλό για αυτήν. Ακολουθόντας των χρισμό του μαντείου για τον προτότοκο γιό ξεκίνησαν 300 και κάτι πολεμικες μηχανες για το πιο θερμές πύλες της ιστορίας με αρχηγό έναν από τους βασηλιάδες τους τον Λεωνιδα. Οι μέρες της μάχης ήταν σχετικά λίγες ομως οι αναλογίες εδείξαν το μεγαλείο των Ελληνικων στρατευμάτων, αφού μέσα σε 4 ημέρες βεβήλωσαν 10000 βάρβαρους μπροστά στα μάτια του βασηλιά τους όπου παρακολουθούσε την σφαγή του κράματος που είχε για στρατό!!Η αποδειξη του μεγαλείου του Λεωνιδα φάνηκε τις τελευταίες ώρες τις μάχης δίνοντας την διαταγη στους υπόλοιπους Έλληνες να φύγουν με μια εντολη...να πουν αυτα που έγιναν και ότι παρέμηναν οι Σπαρτιατες μέχρι τέλους υπηρετόντας τους νόμους Λακωνίας.

That's just ...nonsense. And your spelling is awful!
I'm sorry but....what the hell is this? Why write in greek if this is the English page? (talk) 15:25, 6 November 2008 (UTC)Leonidas


I once heard that when asked for military aid, Leonidas would send one man. Apparently this goes along with the saying "One man, one riot, one ranger." Can anyone explain this?

I want to learn more about this person! Is there anyone who can help me understand who he is a little bit better than I already do? thanks!!!!!!!!!

Ditto, Leonidas seems like a very interesting person. Try looking in a good library, or a prevelant university libary.

When you leave a question on the talk page, it is useful to leave a user name too, otherwise how is anyone going to be able to know who you are so that they can answer you? If you want to read more about Leonidas, a good place to start is Plutarch's biography of him. Try the Penguin Classics anthology of Plutarch's wrtings about Sparta, helpfully titled On Sparta. Plutarch is not always very reliable and I advise you to read some modern histories of Sparta as well. Lexo (talk) 11:10, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

Re "one riot, one ranger"- see here

I am highly skeptical that Leonidas would send one Spartan as aid- their strategy was to use the phalanx to break apart enemy lines and then kill the enemy. This is impossible without a group of similarly trained and equipped people doing same thing alongside.

Re: It is not Leonidas but Spartan policy/law/tradition that sometimes when Greek states asked for military support or aid, only one man was sent instead of a contingent of hoplites. That one man was usually a well trained Spartan general or military advisor in strategy, tactics and training. He would be sent to the Greek sate/ally in need and train/prepare or lead their army. This was especially common when Spartans were at war themselves (i.e. with the Aegina their perpetual domestic rival) and unable to spare soldiers or when they were participating in the Carneian Festival.

Note* Sparta's domestic rival was Argos, Aegina was a common adversary of Athens.

Xanthippus, for example. The Jackal God 04:51, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

Better Illustration, Please...[edit]

There exists an impressive statue of Leonidas that could be used to illustrate this article. Why insult his memory with a swishy 19th century painting of Leonidas daintily pointing his foot like King Louis XIV? It isn't a very accurate representation.

They should add a pic from "300" preferable the one where he tells the aremy of his plans to dine in hell. I don't know how much that actually looks like him, but it should certainly be added. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:49, 23 October 2007 (UTC) 04:36, 29 August 2006 (UTC)C. Poloynis

King Leon[edit]

Leon (king of Sparta) links here, which is kinda inaccurate as apparently King Leon is not a nickname but an ancestor from 590-560, so if someone who knows how (I'm noobish) could fix it please do. Highlandlord 13:02, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

If you think Leon is worthy of an article on his own, click on the King Leon link that appears just below the article title when you search on King Leon. Then edit away on the redirect page. An alternative solution would be to mention him in passing here on the Leonidas I page. (John User:Jwy talk) 14:54, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't know anything about Leon, I was just checking out the kings of Sparta reading about him and clicking on Leon brought me here. I don't know if hes worthy of an article of his own, although most of the Agiads just say (name) Agiad King of Sparta ruled from (date) to (date), but I do know that hes Leonidas' grandfather and shouldn't direct to here. I just figured out right now how to get it to not redirect here, so fixing it. Highlandlord 00:15, 1 September 2006 (UTC)

Fight for Leonidas' body[edit]

Leonidas fell in the thickest of the fight; the Spartans attempted to retrieve his body, but given the numbers they faced, the king's body was taken by the Persians.

Several sources, albeit modern perhaps, state that a small group of Spartans fought down the hill to retrieve his body:

When Leonidas was killed, he was some distance away. Some of the Spartans formed a tight group, fought their way to his body, picked it up, then fought their way back to the main group on the hill.

They demanded the body of Leonidas in return for the Spartan's lives, but the men refused to abandon the body of their King, declaring: "A Spartan leaves the field with his shield or upon it". --Asososocrates 06:56, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

...Xerxes felt remorse and, forty years later, Leonidas' corpse was returned to the Spartans.

This doesn't make any sense. After 40 years, a corpse is no longer a corpse. Slyfoxman7 08:15, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Corpse, what was left of it, so skeleton.

--- Well it also doesn't make sense considering that Xerxes was already dead 40 years after Leonidas was killed.

I'm not positive about this, but i'm pretty sure, according to Herodotus, that Leondias' body was fough over for several hours, first captured by the persians, then retaken by the Spartans, recaptured by the persians, and finally taken back by the Spartans167.206.69.62 (talk) 15:31, 6 November 2008 (UTC)Leonidas

leonidas wife[edit]

the wife of leonidas, after the battle, became voluntarily became a sexual servant of Xerxes because, she moaned, that "no greek has the capabilities to please a woman".—Preceding unsigned comment added by [[User:{{{1}}}|{{{1}}}]] ([[User talk:{{{1}}}|talk]] • [[Special:Contributions/{{{1}}}|contribs]])

Can someone please provide a reliable source for this ?I have removed it since I have studied extensively the persian wars and I can't recall reading this anywhere .Thus I have removed it. I will check about what happened to Leonidas wife and I will add information about her... Tbere 23:38, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

This is pure vandalism and trolling, there's nothing to source. I'll report this sad fellow right away. Thanks for removing it Tbere. Miskin 23:45, 6 March 2007 (UTC)


i created a quotes section...if i did something wrong I am sorry I am still noob here and don't know much :P Tbere 02:07, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

gorgo queen of sparta[edit]

i created a small article about gorgo with all the info I managed to gather about her.if anyone is interested here is the link I think that the movie is good on the violence and the war- it like alot of drama. You know, alot of blood and war, I belive that the people that see it got their attention.

Temporary Protection[edit]

Does anyone think temporary protection may be needed for this article due to the near-release of 300(movie)? There has already been (at least) one vandal edit in regards to it.--William H. Bigsby 00:00, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

well i don't think so...I checked the history page and most of the vandalisms were minor with various refers to the movie...Nothing really major...If it get's worse and vandalisms happen more often then I think it would be ok.

I do think so. Not only this, but all Thermopylae-related articles. Miskin 01:45, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree. Temporary protection is a good idea, I've had to fix this article, and reading other articles related to the film show rampant vandalism. -- Ennuified 15:16, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Unclear reference - trembler[edit]

The article near the end states:

A second Spartan, Pantites, was sent by Leonidas to attempt to raise support in Thessaly but returned to Thermopylae only after the battle's conclusion. Pantites hanged himself in disgrace after being shunned as a "trembler".

Anyone know what a "trembler" is? -- 20:54, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

i guess the guy who wrote this article was greek.He probably meant the one who trembles.This in our language means something like chicken in yours :)

Maybe we should change the word, to something like "coward" so everyone will understand it? Morrock 21:25, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

A 'trembler' is the term used to refer to those Spartans who were deemed to have shamed themselves in battle, it is a social state bringing with it various forms of 'dishonour' within Spartan society. and does not really liken itself to words like 'coward' or 'chicken'. Tylerdurden289 (talk) 12:20, 24 July 2010 (UTC)

300 fim pic of Leonidas[edit]

It's only fair that someone dig up a pic of the 1960's version "The 300 Spartans" and the actor who played Leonidas. -- 22:02, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

and a pic of him from the new remake. i only say this because pretty much every single article concerning characters, real or not, has several interpreations of them. (talk) 22:44, 16 March 2008 (UTC)

I have a DVD of The 300 Spartans and will take a screenshot. It's not a very good movie. The actor was named Richard Egan, btw. Lexo (talk) 10:57, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

Vandalism Incoming[edit]

Incoming from World of Warcraft forums: —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Moheezy (talkcontribs) 18:37, 15 March 2007 (UTC).

Thanks for the heads-up. I've temporarily semi-protected the page. Kafziel Talk 18:41, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Clean Up and Factual dispute[edit]

I have tagged this article for cleaning due to the factual problems and the fact that the article disputes itself about what happened after the death of Leonidas. There are many different sources that contradict some of the facts on this page. A History Channel documentary titled "Last Stand of the 300" has different numbers for the fources that stayed behind, also that documentary uses different qoutes, plus many other things. I know that this is only one source, but there are others. This article needs some help. K1000 23:12, 17 March 2007. (UTC)

Too many vandalisms[edit]

Suggest this article be locked -- there have been quite a few vandalisms. 14:32, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

This article is complete bullshit. Not historical at all, and sources are not credible. Methinks person who wrote this watched 300 too many times. I suggest someone with historical credentials rewrite the whole thing. –The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk)

It will probably tend that way until the movie fades away. But feel free to fix it with what you can cite. (John User:Jwy talk) 03:22, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

GO AWAY, 300 IS WIKID!!! ASS –The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk)

How many soldiers?[edit]

First the article states that "Leonidas went to Thermopylae with 300 of his finest soldiers and 1100 allies", then is says that he split his army, staying in the pass with the 300 spartans, 400 thebans and 700 thespians, while the others retired. Since I don't think that the number of soldiers who retired amounts to zero, there must be an error somewhere. 18:56, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

I read that he took 7000 men in addition to his 300 Spartans. I got that from 'The Dangerous Book for Boys', which isn't exactly a dedicated history book, but it is suppossed to be educational so one would assume the writers researched it. Definetely a defenite source needed on this one. Phoenix1985 22:49, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

The 300 is only ever presumed to refer to Spartiates (full Spartan citizens) and not the lower class Spartans, such as the Helot slaves, who probably made up the bulk of the 7,000 men. But guys, historians have been arguing the figures of Thermopylae for thousands of years, it's not going to be resolved here. Just accept that the best we can hope for are somewhat accurate estimates based on the accounts we have at our disposal. Conor 20:22, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Try to look for some sources at or to make it more easier just a suggestion. Lakers 07:14, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
The [Battle of Thermopylae] article has it that there were 9000 helots with Leonidas and the 300 warriors, hence, this passage "In 480 BC Leonidas went to Thermopylae with 300 of his finest soldiers," ought to be edited.-- 11:37, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

Leonidas took only 300 men. The rest of the 6700 were Greek allies who met Leonidas at Thermopylae and accepted Spartan command. They didn't come from Sparta. This is what Herodotus says and what is generally accepted. Miskin 11:15, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Also the dispute at Thermopylae is restricted to the numbers of the Persians not of the Greeks. But even there, a figure around 200,000 is generally accepted. Miskin 11:15, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Is there a disparity between the number 700 and 7,000? 700 thespians are referenced in the Battle of Thermopylae article. Which is right? I'm not disputing anything, just thinking things should match. Only your source is cited, Phoenix1985. Viscouse 13:56, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Unsourced Opinion[edit]

Towards the beginning fo the article, when discussing the size of the force sent, we quite rightly go "Well, contemporary sources say this" but then say:

"Instead it seems likely that the ephors supported the plan half-heartedly due to the festival of Carneia and their policy of concentrating the Greek forces at the Isthmus of Corinth."

Well, that's really nice, but says who? What source said the Ephors limited the number of troops? the factor of the festival is probably an important one, but the statement as it stands is very woolly. I think it either needs substantiating or deleting.

Herodotus does. Miskin 06:08, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

"one of the most famous battles in ancient history." removed this line from introduction because i felt it was POV and weasel words. if i'm wrong please correct. Tca achintya (talk) 17:44, 7 March 2010 (UTC)

I think there is probably a good argument that it is, especially if one restricts it to Western ancient history, but until there's proper sourcing of such a claim, you did the right thing. (John User:Jwy talk) 21:26, 7 March 2010 (UTC)

A few comments...[edit]

Just wanted to comment that the way that the name Leonidas is pronounced in the film 300 is not the way that the name is pronounced by any Greek whether it be in Greek or English. I should know as Leonidas is my name. The name is pronounced as Leon-ee-thus not Leeon-eye-das.

Also can someone please comment on where "Lion's son", "Lion-like" came from. Reference? It is true that the Greek word for Lion is similar, but that is an assumption to my knowledge and to make that leap seems like seems like a non-Greek wrote that. Greek names don't work like that. Happy to be told otherwise.

Leon V. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:49, 12 April 2007 (UTC).

Generally, in Greek culture, names which are similar to an object, animal, or other such entity, are meant to depict that which the root word defines. In Leonidas' case, though the name is not directly "Lion-like", it contains part of the Greek word for lion, λεων (leon). My name, Giorgio, which in Greek is Γιεωργιος (Yiorgos), means "farmer, earthworker," deriving from the elements γη, or γι (ge), "earth" and εργον (ergon), or εργασία, "work." Nidht 07:34, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia generally follows the Erasmian pronunciation, according to which ancient name are pronounced with b, d, g rather than bh, dh, gh. As for the etymology, "leon" is the ancient Greek word for "lion" (the modern Greek "liondari" is its diminutive), and "-ides" (pronounced "idis" in modern Greek) is a common Greek suffix meaning "son of", similar to the Germanic "-son", of the Byzantine Greek '-poulos'. The "-ides" (or -edes) suffix is common in ancient Greek names e.g. Archimedes, Diomedes etc. but also in Modern Greek names e.g. Petrides = son of Petros (Peter), Paulides = son of Paulos (Paul) etc. The reason why the Spartan king is not spelled "Leon-ides" but "Leon-idas", is because the latter is the Doric Greek version of the name, in which the letter alpha is frequently in the place of eta. For example the Spartan word for demos was "damos", emera -> amera etc. In other words, Leonidas did also exist as a name in ancient Greece, usually in non-Dorian societies. The reason why only the Doric version of the name survived in Greek forenames today, is the historical popularity and importance of the Spartan king in Greek culture. Miskin 13:29, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

Well I know someone who was named after Leonidus, and they claim it's pronounced "Lay-oh-nigh(like night)-dus." Does anybody have any proof of the actual pronunciation of his name. Morrock 21:33, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

Leonidus is not Greek. If anything it would be a Latinisation of a Greek name, though I've never heard of it. Miskin

Leonidas is pronounced as Leh-o-ni-thas both in modern and ancient Greek, the name runs in my family for generations (father, son, grandfather, 3 cousins) as part of a tradition. It is still a popular name in the region of Mani and its people who are direct descendants of the ancient Spartans; there today you could see many of the ancient Spartan characteristics, traditions and idiomatic Doric Greek language alive. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:38, 12 September 2014 (UTC)

Who did Gorgo ask?[edit]

In the sentence: 'According to Plutarch, Leonidas's wife Gorgo asked him how she could aid his mission. He responded "marry a good man, bear good children, and live a good life."'. Who did Gorgo ask? Did she ask Leonidas or Plutarch? I don't know much about this history, so i wouldn't know if it was obvious that it was one or the other. Thanks :) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 21:59, 12 April 2007 (UTC).

Given that Plutarch lived six hundred years after Gorgo, I'm going to go with her asking Leonidas. john k 05:37, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Come on, dont be a prat, plutarch, did gorgo even know who this bloke is?

Well KIng Sapartan was brave on living all behind and go to war and fight the Xerxs, even tought the lost they still on the other war will have more Spartans and probably win this time, cuz now they well have more people to fight with and more strong people too.

Wrong person listed under children[edit]

Currently, the child of Leonidas II is listed as the child of Leonidas I (Cleomenes III). It should be Pleistarchus, as listed here: I would have fixed it, but apparently this page needs protection? Who would've thunk it.-- 03:33, 17 April 2007 (UTC)


A few years later, Xerxes, feeling regret for what he had done[citation needed], ordered that Leonidas' body be returned to Sparta[citation needed], where it received an emotional and elaborate funeral.

This can no longer remain in the article without a citation. Miskin 10:47, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

WWE Profile???[edit]

Anyone knows why King Leonidas has a profile under the SmackDown! roster of WWE? Weird. —Imdanumber1 (talk contribs  email) 03:30, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

That's a good question. Shouldn't that be listede under the "In popular culture" section?-Gdfanatic21594 20:44, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

There's a King Leonidas in the WWE? After nearly ten years of watching it, I've never seen or heard of him. Spartan198 (talk) 14:45, 20 June 2008 (UTC) Spartan198

Internet Memes[edit]

Why is Leonidas in the category "Internet Memes"? Nothing about it is mentioned in the article and I can't think of a situation wherein he would be included. Introducing Numa Numa, Star Wars Kid, and the Hero of Sparta??? Childe Roland of Gilead 20:03, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

I have seen the openmouthed screaming headshot of Gerard Butler as Leonidas (in "300") used on multiple bulletin boards as an avatar, and I have seen this still of his face photoshopped on various bodies (Star Trek fans, especially, seem to love to put his screaming head on Kirk's body over at the TrekBBS). So that is what I think is referred to under "Internet Memes." Sir Rhosis 02:12, 25 August 2007 (UTC)

You guys haven't seen it? The open-mouthed picture is almost always accompanied with the caption "THIS IS SPARTA!" And it's gone on to be mocked in several ways, one of the more popular ones is "THIS IS BEOWULF," since Leonidas' line and Beowulf's "I AM BEOWULF" sound so similar167.206.69.62 (talk) 15:09, 7 November 2008 (UTC)Leonidas

Fair use rationale for Image:300 pic.jpg[edit]

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Fair use rationale for Image:300 pic.jpg[edit]

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If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images uploaded after 4 May, 2006, and lacking such an explanation will be deleted one week after they have been uploaded, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

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I note there is only one specific citation in the entire article, but a lot of information is given which must have come from somewhere.

How do we put one of those headers on the article page saying "this article needs more references", or something like that?

WikiReaderer 19:32, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

{{refimprove|date=October 2007}} works, I think - done. (John User:Jwy talk) 01:04, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
I have added a refimprove tag. This article needs a lot more citations, preferably including some that are to books written less than two thousand years ago. Nothing against Herodotus, far from it, but he shouldn't be the only source for this article. I will make a list of outstanding unreferenced statements and see if I can't provide sources for them from my own collection. Lexo (talk) 11:06, 3 August 2008 (UTC)


My Greek history is a little rusty, but wasn't there an oracle in the history? When the Spartans were called upon by the rest of the Greek world, they consulted an oracle which said that (roughly) the Greeks would be victorious if a Spartan king died in battle. Consequently, Leonidas (one of the two reigning Spartan kings!) assembled a suicide squad and marched out at their head, prepared to die to save Greece. Seems like this article begins in the middle, no discussion on the Greek/Persian history and the role of Sparta, no discussion of the Spartan governmental/social system. (talk) 08:26, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

  • yes there was an oracle, it was either the oracle at delphi or the spartan oracle, this is in legends but it could be a myth

Ubberflubber (talk) 18:21, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

Major abuse[edit]

I was perusing this article for my Latin class, and it has been horribly abused. Poor Leo is referred to as a "pimp" and a "gangsta." This needs to be fixed ASAP... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:20, 27 February 2008 (UTC)

And some a..hole put THIS as the prophecy of the oracle: O ye men who dwell in the streets of chocolate and death Lacedaemon! Either your glorious town shall be sacked by the children of Perseus, Or, in exchange, must all through the whole puppy country Mourn for the loss of a milk carton, descendant of great Heracles. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:27, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

That's actually pretty funny, although obviously you're right to delete it. I'm afraid this Sparta-related-article nonsense will continue until stupid teenagers the world over forget about 300. Lexo (talk) 10:59, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

No picture of Leonidas from 300?! :o[edit]

Surely 300, as inaccurate as it is, is still an example of a popular modern depiction? Perhaps we could have a picture of King Leo near the end of the article under a legacy section eh? Like it or not, wikinerds, he's made a lasting and notable impression on the public at large; one that should be recorded! ~~ —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:13, 7 November 2009 (UTC)

I agree with the first paragraph but this passage should have more info on Loenidas and i mean Olympias's uncle Leonidas. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:48, 31 January 2010 (UTC)

Sources for the article[edit]

In response to the box that says that this article needs sources, I've found 7 links to help verify the history of Leonidas I:

--Fede-lasse (talk) 13:54, 10 June 2010 (UTC)


The section in question says: ' He chose only 300 Spartans because if he had taken the entire Spartan Army, he would need the permission of the Council, who he knew would not agree with him.' and later in the same paragraph: 'Leonidas took only his personal bodyguards,[3] and not the army, because the majority of the Spartan Army was coordinating with the massed naval forces of the Greeks against the Persian Navy.' the former statement lacks references while the latter has one I have not checked. (Drn8 (talk) 16:11, 30 June 2010 (UTC))

I'm also responsible for the addition of the contradict template which I added while not logged in. (Drn8 (talk) 16:13, 30 June 2010 (UTC))

No editorializing please[edit]

This edit basically says "a Wikipedian was of the opinion that the 540 date is rather too early". Having an opinion on things isn't a replacement for actually supporting it based on references. --dab (𒁳) 14:10, 8 November 2010 (UTC)

Life - typo[edit]

Hi All, "Because Leonidas was not heir to the throne, he was not lol from attending the agoge". I don't know what was intended here (lol). Someone else perhaps? VelhinhoEstoniano (talk) 17:50, 8 May 2011 (UTC)

Life - typo[edit]

Hi All, "Because Leonidas was not heir to the throne, he was not lol from attending the agoge". I don't know what was intended here (lol). Someone else perhaps? VelhinhoEstoniano (talk) 17:50, 8 May 2011 (UTC)

Date of death[edit]

These edits changed his date of death without a decent source. Admittedly the previous version of the article was internally inconsistent. Logically, we would expect the article to agree with the article on the Battle of Thermopylae. That gives two dates, relating to two different sources. One of these dates is the same as one of the dates that used to be in this article. Yaris678 (talk) 18:36, 8 May 2011 (UTC)

More edits on the subject. I am inclined to agree with this edit by Dougweller, although that did leave an overly precise date in the lead. I have removed all such dates. Yaris678 (talk) 11:43, 2 August 2012 (UTC)

Selecting the 300 soldiers[edit]

I read somewhere that when Leonidas chose his soldiers, he chose only those who had sons or brothers who could provide for their family when they didn't return. Is there any historical basis for this claim? Or is this from the imagination of some modern storyteller? —MiguelMunoz (talk) 19:40, 23 November 2011 (UTC)

Leonidas' Mother[edit]

The article claims that according to Herodotus, Leonidas' mother was his father's niece. Greeks still today use the terms nephew and niece loosely, it does not necessarily mean a blood relative, rather can be a close friend who is a generation younger. The article is therefore misleading, as if Leonidas' father practiced incest, which is false. This sort of misleading statements by Wikipedia occurs far too often. (talk) 02:19, 25 July 2012 (UTC)

Leonidas I in Agoge[edit]

I am unable to find any academic references to Leonidas being in the Agoge. The citation itself is most unhelpful, for it is about the Agoge in general, and should not be a part of this article anyways. -- (talk) 22:58, 25 July 2012 (UTC)

Accession date kooky.[edit]

It says Cleomenes I became king in 520, Leonidas took the throne some time between then and 516, then that Cleomenes died in 490. Slight discrepancy there. (talk) 08:14, 6 December 2012 (UTC)

Modern section[edit]

The modern section presents and affinity to historic entry. This affinity has nothing to do with history. (talk) 03:24, 3 February 2016 (UTC)