Gateway to the Classics: The Golden Ladder Book by E. Hershey Sneath
 
The Golden Ladder Book by  E. Hershey Sneath

Three Hundred Heroes

Long, long ago a great king came from Persia with a mighty army to conquer the Greeks.

But the Greeks were a brave people, and loved to be free. They were determined to rule themselves rather than be slaves of a Persian king.

So they armed themselves to drive back the king and his soldiers.

The Persians could not get into the country of the Greeks without going through a narrow pass in the mountains. But here stood Leonidas with three hundred brave Spartans.

On came the Persians—thousands and thousands of them. How could Leonidas and his small band of Spartans guard the pass against so many soldiers?

But the pass was so narrow that only a few could enter it at a time, and the Spartans were able to attack them and slay them.

All day the battle raged. The three hundred Spartans were brave and held the pass against the great Persian army.

Many fell dead, but their comrades fought on. They fought so hard that, by and by, their spears were broken. But they would not desert their post. They would defend the pass to the last.

So bravely did they defend it that twenty thousand Persians were slain that day.

But a traitor showed the Persians a way around the pass. Then they fell upon Leonidas and his faithful band, and killed them all.

But their bravery struck such terror into the hearts of the Persians that they did not; conquer Greece after all. By the heroism of this noble band of Spartans, who fought and died for their country, Grecce was saved.


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