Delian League  

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 This page Delian League is part of the Ancient Greece series.   Photo: western face of the Parthenon
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This page Delian League is part of the Ancient Greece series.
Photo: western face of the Parthenon

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Delian League was an association of approximately 150 5th-century BC Greek city-states under the leadership of Athens, whose purpose was to continue fighting the Persian Empire after the Greek victory in the Battle of Plataea at the end of the Greco–Persian Wars. Founded in 478 BC, the League's name derives from its official meeting place, the island of Delos, where congresses were held in the temple and where the treasury stood until Pericles moved it to Athens in 454 BC. Shortly after its inception Athens began to exploit the League's navy for its own benefit. This behavior would frequently lead to conflict between Athens and the less powerful members of the League. By 431 BC Athens' heavy-handed control of the Delian League would prompt the outbreak of the Peloponnesian War; the League was dissolved upon the war's conclusion in 404 BC.

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