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Mardonius (märdōˈnēəs) [key], d. 479 B.C., Persian general; son-in-law of Darius I. Darius sent him (492 B.C.) to retaliate against Eretria and Athens for aiding the Ionians in the Persian Wars, but his fleet was lost in a storm off Mt. Athos, and a Thracian tribe destroyed a large part of his army. He helped Xerxes I plan his invasion of Greece. Xerxes returned (480 B.C.) to Persia after his defeat at Salamis and left Mardonius in command in Greece. Mardonius was defeated and killed at Plataea.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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