Reinstating the Hoplite: Arms, armour and phalanx fighting in Archaic and Classical Greece

Overview

Recent research into the military history of ancient Greece has questioned the central rôle traditionally ascribed to the famous hoplite phalanx by historians and suggested that even as late as the Persian Wars of 480-479 BC, Greek battles consisted essentially of open fighting and duels between individual combatants, in an almost Homeric fashion. In this meticulous study, Adam Schwartz in turn questions the new orthodoxy. Departing from a detailed scrutiny of hoplite equipment and its physical characteristics, ...

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Overview

Recent research into the military history of ancient Greece has questioned the central rôle traditionally ascribed to the famous hoplite phalanx by historians and suggested that even as late as the Persian Wars of 480-479 BC, Greek battles consisted essentially of open fighting and duels between individual combatants, in an almost Homeric fashion. In this meticulous study, Adam Schwartz in turn questions the new orthodoxy. Departing from a detailed scrutiny of hoplite equipment and its physical characteristics, the author demonstrates that this equipment must in fact have been developed specifically to meet the needs of warriors fighting in closed formation, which, it is shown, can be traced back into the eighth century BC. In this way, the study is not only a reappraisal of the rôle of the phalanx, but also a significant contribution to the study of Archaic Greek history.

Great emphasis is, furthermore, placed upon the illumination of such crucial questions as the duration of the average hoplite battle and the role of the othismos - pushing - in deciding the outcome. In short, this book will quickly claim its place as one of the basic studies of ancient Greek hoplite battle.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9783515093309
  • Publisher: Franz Steiner Verlag
  • Publication date: 12/31/2009
  • Series: Historia - Einzelschriften Series , #207
  • Pages: 337
  • Product dimensions: 6.90 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Introduction 11

2 Hoplite equipment and its limitations 25

3 The phalanx 102

4 Duration of hoplite battles 201

5 Conclusion 226

App Battle inventory 235

Bibliography 293

List of illustrations 303

Indices 305

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