Frank Miller's 1998 graphic novel 300 is a fictional depiction of the ancient (480 B.C.) battle between the Persian Empire and the Greek city-states attempting to resist the Persian invasion. As a graphic novel, it is illustrated throughout, with imagery depicting muscular warriors armed with the weaponry of the time (e.g., spears, swords, shields). The "300" of the title refers to the number of Greek Spartan soldiers attempting, together with a thousand more from other Greek regions, to repel the Persian invaders, whose numbers far exceeded those of the defenders. The Battle of Thermopylae remains a much-studied battle by military historians for the bravery and resourcefulness of the Greek warriors in their ultimately failed attempt at blocking the armies of King Xerxes of Persia. Miller's novel is an attempt to personalize the conflict, depicting both sides of the battle and illustrating the barbarity inherent in war, as well as the ultimate futility of such endeavors.