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This article is about the King of Sparta. You may be looking for The False Leonidas, a mercenary who operated during the Peloponnesian War.

Leonidas I (c. 540 BCE – 480 BCE) was a warrior king of the Greek city-state of Sparta, best known for his involvement in the Battle of Thermopylae against the Persian Empire in 480 BCE. Leonidas wielded an Isu spear, which was later passed down to his daughter, and then his granddaughter, the misthios Kassandra.[1]

A direct descendant of the Isu, Leonidas possessed a proportionally-higher level of Isu genes than usual; consequently, so did his descendants.[2]


In 480 BCE, Leonidas consulted the Pythia of Delphi about going to war against the Achaemenid Empire of Xerxes I of Persia, who had invaded Greece. The Cult of Kosmos, who supported Xerxes I and manipulated the Pythia, threatened Leonidas not to go agaisnt their plans. Nevertheless, Leonidas defied the order and ordered his officer, Dienekes, to gather the army for battle.[3]

Leonidas and his army gathered at a narrow passage way in Malis, where the Persians would have to pass through in order to reach mainland Greece. Prior the battle, Leonidas reminisced to Dienekes about how he would have liked to go fishing with his son. Upon spotting the arrival of the Persian fleet in Malis, Leonidas briefed his men and braced for the attack. During the first wave, Leonidas clashed and defeated a Persian officer, Kurush. [4]

In the aftermath, one of the Spartans revealed that they had been betrayed by one of the Greeks, who revealed a path behind the passage which allowed the Persians to maneuver around. Nevertheless, Leonidas refused to retreat and ordered his men to defend the pass. The Spartans were able to defend the passage for seven days, though they were eventually overwhelmed. With the death of Dienekes, Leonidas himself eventually perished, not before killing a Persian officer who delivered a mortal injury to him.[4]


After his death, Xerxes, who was deeply infuriated by Leonidas, had his head cut off and impaled on a pike. His remains, along with his spear, were later recovered by the Spartans. Leonidas remains were buried in a tomb southwest of the city, and his broken spear was handed down to his daughter, Myrrine, who in turn passed it on to her daughter Kassandra.[5]

Following Leonidas' death, a statue called the Lion of Leonidas was placed where he fell in Malis.[5]




  1. Assassin's Creed: Odyssey – Characters. Ubisoft. Accessed 12 June 2018
  2. Totilo, Stephen. "Everything We Learned About Assassin's Creed Odyssey After Playing It". Kotaku. 12 June 2018. Accessed 13 June 2018.
  3. Assassin's Creed: OdysseyBully the Bullies
  4. 4.0 4.1 Assassin's Creed: OdysseyBattle of 300
  5. 5.0 5.1 Assassin's Creed: OdysseyMemories Awoken