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The Battle of Marathon was a military engagement between the combined armies of Athens and Plataia against the Persian Empire in 490 BCE. The battle, fought on the Marathon Beach, was the culmination of the first attempt by King Darius I of Persia in his attempts to subjugate Greece.
Although the Spartans had agreed to assist Athens in the battle they could not due to the religious feast of Apollo Karneios, which forbade them from leaving their city until the next full moon. The arrived on the battlefield after it was fought, and they begrudgingly congratulated Athens on their victory and left.
Afterwards, a tumulus was built at the heart of the plain to house the slain Athenians, and another for the Plataians within the ruins of Plataia in Boeotia. The Athenians also dedicated a treasury to the god Apollo and erected a group of statues in the Sanctuary of Delphi in Phokis to commemorate their victory. To the same effect, a victory column was raised near the Marathon Beach.