The Athenians did everything in their power to ensure that their victory in Marathon along with the values it stood for would be remembered forever; judging by the monuments still standing for the present-day visitor to admire, their wish for eternal posthumous fame was indeed granted.
Apart from the impressive memorial column erected at the site, an equally striking structure was created to receive the ashes of the 192 Athenian warriors who had died in battle. At almost 9 metres tall and with a diameter of 50 metres, the tumulus, locally known as the Soros (Greek for 'pile'), is the largest and probably the most imposing of the monuments in the plain of Marathon.
To be buried in the battlefield was considered a great honour, fit for those who had sacrificed themselves to keep their land free. After the battle and according to the customary burial rite, the Athenians collected the bodies of their dead and burned them on a funeral pyre, while a feast the necrodeipnos was also held in their honour. Every year, young hoplites visited the monument to dedicate wreaths and make sacrifices. Archaeological research has revealed the layer of ash, as well as fragments of the vases dedicated to the warriors by their families.