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Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC (Studies On The History Of Ancient And Medieval Art of Warfare) epub download

by Nick Sekunda


Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganised to make them more .

Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganised to make them more successful and more competitive against the might of the Romans. This Romanisation of the military took the form of new tactics and changes in the organisation and in the equipment given to the soldier. The thesis is, indeed, that, at some time between 160 and 140 BC, both the Ptolemaic and the Seleucid heavy infantry abandoned Macedonian phalanx formations and sarissas and were re-organized and re-armed along Roman lines.

Start by marking Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC as Want to. .After studying Ancient History and Archaeology at Manchester University, he went on to take his P.

Start by marking Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC as Want to Read: Want to Read savin. ant to Read. Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganised to make them more successful and more competitive against the might of the Romans.

Created December 10, 2009.

By Nick Sekunda Nick Sekunda Close. 1 2 3 4 5. Want to Read. Created December 10, 2009.

Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganized to.Sekunda looks at the pre-Romanized organization of the infantry providing the necessary background history to the later reforms.

Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganized to make them more successful and more competitive against the might of the Romans. This Romanization of the military took the form of new tactics and changes in the organization and in the equipment given to the soldier, with evidence coming from archaeological, literary, epigraphic and iconographic sources.

Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganised to make them more successful and more competitive against the might of the Romans

Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganised to make them more successful and more competitive against the might of the Romans. This Romanisation of the military took the form of new tactics and changes in the organisation and in the equipment given to the soldier, with evidence coming from archaeological, literary, epigraphic and iconographic sources. Sekunda looks at the pre-Romanised organisation of the infantry providing the necessary background history to the later reforms.

History of Western Philosophy. Similar books and articles. The Hellenistic World (. Errington A History of the Hellenistic World 323–30 BC. Hellenistic Evolutions R. W. Wallace, E. M. Harris (Ed. : Transitions to Empire: Essays in Greco-Roman History 360–146 Bc in Honor of E. Badian (Oklahoma Series in Classical Culture). Pp. Xx + 348, Ills, Maps.

Sekunda, N. (2001) Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC. (2001) Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC, Tarn, . 1930) Hellenistic military developments. 1980) The Greeks in Bactria and India. 2007), The Cambridge History of Greek and Roman Warfare: Volume 1, p. 336. ^ . Walbank (1933), Aratos of Sicyon.

Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's bc (Studies on the History of Ancient and Medieval Art of Warfare 5; Łódź). Führer durch das Vindonissa Museum (Brugg). Eurymedon and the evolution of political personifications in the Early Classical period’, Journal of Hellenic Studies 119, 128–141. Iron’, in Coldstream and Catling (ed.

From the late fourth down to the turn of the third century BC, the Boiotians sporadically attached neighbouring poleis to their federal state, most significantly Oropos, several cities in Opountian Lokris, and the population centres of the Megarid. It is evident, however, that many of these poleis had an ambivalent attitude toward the Boiotian government throughout their time as members of the league, and several are known or appear to have seceded at times.

Military art and science - History, Military history, Medieval. In this preface he outlines his project: to start in classical times and move up through Roman times in a first volume; then proceed with three following volumes through the middle ages, the renaissance and terminate in the 19th century.

Sekunda argues that in the 160s BC, the Ptolemaic and Seleucid infantry were reorganised to make them more successful and more competitive against the might of the Romans. This Romanisation of the military took the form of new tactics and changes in the organisation and in the equipment given to the soldier, with evidence coming from archaeological, literary, epigraphic and iconographic sources. Sekunda looks at the pre-Romanised organisation of the infantry providing the necessary background history to the later reforms.

Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC (Studies On The History Of Ancient And Medieval Art of Warfare) epub download

ISBN13: 978-8389786838

ISBN: 8389786834

Author: Nick Sekunda

Category: History

Subcategory: Ancient Civilizations

Language: English

Publisher: Akanthina (December 12, 2006)

Pages: 190 pages

ePUB size: 1898 kb

FB2 size: 1672 kb

Rating: 4.8

Votes: 647

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Related to Hellenistic Infantry Reform in the 160's BC (Studies On The History Of Ancient And Medieval Art of Warfare) ePub books

ZEr0
Nicholas Sekunda, well known for more "popular" accounts of ancient military practices, has masterfully combined past separate works on Hellinistic military reforms in Egypt and Asia Minor into a single, more academic volume. I can't imagine a better, more authoritative study of this fascinating topic. Taking care to concisely review preceding Macedonian and early-Hellenistic practices, he then provides a superbly documented enumeration of likely new developments in the mid-2nd Century BC. Precise and logical at all times, Mr. Sekunda does not hestitate to make bold projections where the sparse surviving data justifies them - an insightful pushing of the envelope of our knowledge that makes his work even more interesting and valuable. This book definitely belongs on the shelf of anyone seriously interested in ancient Greek warfare.
ZEr0
Nicholas Sekunda, well known for more "popular" accounts of ancient military practices, has masterfully combined past separate works on Hellinistic military reforms in Egypt and Asia Minor into a single, more academic volume. I can't imagine a better, more authoritative study of this fascinating topic. Taking care to concisely review preceding Macedonian and early-Hellenistic practices, he then provides a superbly documented enumeration of likely new developments in the mid-2nd Century BC. Precise and logical at all times, Mr. Sekunda does not hestitate to make bold projections where the sparse surviving data justifies them - an insightful pushing of the envelope of our knowledge that makes his work even more interesting and valuable. This book definitely belongs on the shelf of anyone seriously interested in ancient Greek warfare.
Tiv
Contrary to the previous reviewer, I did not find this book "excellent", neither is it exactly on "Hellenistic warfare". The thesis is, indeed, that, at some time between 160 and 140 BC, both the Ptolemaic and the Seleucid heavy infantry abandoned Macedonian phalanx formations and sarissas and were re-organized and re-armed along Roman lines.

Oddly enough, since this is the main premice underlying the thesis, the author does not even discuss the assumption that the "Hellenistic phalanx was no match to the Roman manipular tactical system." It is taken for granted, without any further analysis, partly because the Romans won three set-piece battles - twice against the Antigonids and once against the Seleucids - against Hellenistic phalanxes and because Polybios, a pro-Roman historian, and Livy, a master Roman propagandist tell us so. Needless to say, this is a rather strange way for a historian to make a case.

The second problem is the evidence. It is very unconclusive and, in many cases, it just cannot be used to support the wild claims made by the author, even by stretching it to breaking point. This is particularly the case for the Ptolemaic evidence - a collection of tombstones, steles and pieces of pottery - from which the author concludes that the Ptolemaic heavy infantry was re-equiped, re-trained and reorganized as Roman manipules. Needless to say, this is not the only, and probably not the most likely explanation. As the author mentions, all of the infantry types that he describes look very much like thureophoroi, that is a type of medium infantry that were developed in Hellenistic states and which were more heavily equiped than traditional peltasts but more flexible than phalangites. The need for and usefulness of such troops was clearly recognized by both Antigonus Doson (at Sellasia) and by Philipoemen, strategos of the Acheans, without any need of Roman involvement or of copying the Romans.

Another point which is highly disputable is the author's tendancy to rely on wishful thinking. Everytime a half-worn tombstone or a pottery shard shows a soldier who might be wearing chain mail, Nicholas Sekunda draws the conclusion that this is further "evidence" of the hellenistic infantry reform along Roman lines. This is not exactly convincing, to put mildly, especially since mail seems to have originally been borrowed by the Romans from the Gauls. If this is the case, would't it be much more simple to believe that some of the Hellenistic kingdoms' troops borrowed it from the Galatians, that is from the Gauls which settled in Asia Minor during the third century BC, especially since some of these troops were Galatian mercenaries themselves?

The author is on (slightly) firmer ground when dealing with the Seleucids. This is because we know from the sources we have on the Daphne Parade, a military parade when Antiochos IV Epiphane showed off the might of his kingdom, that there were some 5000 troops (approximately the strength of a reinforced legion) the equiped as Roman infantry. However, this is all we know for sure, and all the rest - for instance the claim that, gradually, the whole Seleucid phalanx was so re-equipped is not supported by any kind of evidence. Although some authors (such as Bar-Kochva in his excellent study on the Seleucid Army) claims that these made up half of the Argyraspids, with the other half appearing as Chalkaspides and retaining their traditional organization and equipement (pike infantry), this is no more than an interpretation. In reality, we simply do not know if the 5000 Roman-style infantry were part of the Guard and a crack force, although this does seem very likely.

So, although the author's thesis is interesting, there is very little real evidence to back it up with. Apart from the statement that 5000 Seleucid infantry were re-equipped in Roman-style for a parad in BC 166 and that we never hear of them again, the rest of the evidence can very easily be interpreted in a quiet different, more simple and less far-fetched way than the author's interpretations. For instance, the mercenary garrison troops shown as equipped in Roman style are most likely to have been thureophoroi. These would, of course, be more suitable as garrisons that phalangites.
Tiv
Contrary to the previous reviewer, I did not find this book "excellent", neither is it exactly on "Hellenistic warfare". The thesis is, indeed, that, at some time between 160 and 140 BC, both the Ptolemaic and the Seleucid heavy infantry abandoned Macedonian phalanx formations and sarissas and were re-organized and re-armed along Roman lines.

Oddly enough, since this is the main premice underlying the thesis, the author does not even discuss the assumption that the "Hellenistic phalanx was no match to the Roman manipular tactical system." It is taken for granted, without any further analysis, partly because the Romans won three set-piece battles - twice against the Antigonids and once against the Seleucids - against Hellenistic phalanxes and because Polybios, a pro-Roman historian, and Livy, a master Roman propagandist tell us so. Needless to say, this is a rather strange way for a historian to make a case.

The second problem is the evidence. It is very unconclusive and, in many cases, it just cannot be used to support the wild claims made by the author, even by stretching it to breaking point. This is particularly the case for the Ptolemaic evidence - a collection of tombstones, steles and pieces of pottery - from which the author concludes that the Ptolemaic heavy infantry was re-equiped, re-trained and reorganized as Roman manipules. Needless to say, this is not the only, and probably not the most likely explanation. As the author mentions, all of the infantry types that he describes look very much like thureophoroi, that is a type of medium infantry that were developed in Hellenistic states and which were more heavily equiped than traditional peltasts but more flexible than phalangites. The need for and usefulness of such troops was clearly recognized by both Antigonus Doson (at Sellasia) and by Philipoemen, strategos of the Acheans, without any need of Roman involvement or of copying the Romans.

Another point which is highly disputable is the author's tendancy to rely on wishful thinking. Everytime a half-worn tombstone or a pottery shard shows a soldier who might be wearing chain mail, Nicholas Sekunda draws the conclusion that this is further "evidence" of the hellenistic infantry reform along Roman lines. This is not exactly convincing, to put mildly, especially since mail seems to have originally been borrowed by the Romans from the Gauls. If this is the case, would't it be much more simple to believe that some of the Hellenistic kingdoms' troops borrowed it from the Galatians, that is from the Gauls which settled in Asia Minor during the third century BC, especially since some of these troops were Galatian mercenaries themselves?

The author is on (slightly) firmer ground when dealing with the Seleucids. This is because we know from the sources we have on the Daphne Parade, a military parade when Antiochos IV Epiphane showed off the might of his kingdom, that there were some 5000 troops (approximately the strength of a reinforced legion) the equiped as Roman infantry. However, this is all we know for sure, and all the rest - for instance the claim that, gradually, the whole Seleucid phalanx was so re-equipped is not supported by any kind of evidence. Although some authors (such as Bar-Kochva in his excellent study on the Seleucid Army) claims that these made up half of the Argyraspids, with the other half appearing as Chalkaspides and retaining their traditional organization and equipement (pike infantry), this is no more than an interpretation. In reality, we simply do not know if the 5000 Roman-style infantry were part of the Guard and a crack force, although this does seem very likely.

So, although the author's thesis is interesting, there is very little real evidence to back it up with. Apart from the statement that 5000 Seleucid infantry were re-equipped in Roman-style for a parad in BC 166 and that we never hear of them again, the rest of the evidence can very easily be interpreted in a quiet different, more simple and less far-fetched way than the author's interpretations. For instance, the mercenary garrison troops shown as equipped in Roman style are most likely to have been thureophoroi. These would, of course, be more suitable as garrisons that phalangites.
lolike
From the author's Introduction:
"The thesis advanced in this book is that both the Ptolemaic and Seleucid heavy infantry were re-armed and re-organized along Roman lines during the 160's BC. This was the first time that the military successes of Rome forced the Hellenistic world to accept the fact that the Hellenistic phalanx was no match to the Roman manipular tactical system, and that it was necessary to change the equipment, organisation and tactics of their heavy infantry."
"The evidence for military reform comes from an extremely varied range of sources, literary, epigraphic, papyrological and representational."

The author tells us that "Some of the ideas advanced in this book have previously appeared in two titles of a popular nature" - e.g. his books for Montvert Publications on the Ptolemaic and Seleucid Armies back in the mid-1990s. I didn't read them at the time, and now they are hideously expensive - come on Osprey, buy up the reprint rights!
Also - "My ideas of what happened in the infantry reforms of the 160s have changed somewhat" due to new research work.

The contents are:
P013: List of figures in text (36 of)
P015: Introduction
P017: Chapter 1 - Military Reform in the Ptolemaic Army (14 sections)
P084: Chapter 2 - Military Reform in the Seleucucid Army (8 sections)
P115: General Conclusions
P117: Appendices (7 of)
P180: Bibliography

As you can see, there is much more evidence for the Ptolemaic army, and this involves a lot of `technical' discussion, and a knowledge of the Greek alphabet will be invaluable, although not essential for following it. The Seleucid army has much less evidence, and is dependent upon a `reasoned' discussion. The Appendices contain a lot of interesting snippets, which I shall go into below.

From the author's General Conclusions:
"The proposition advanced in the second chapter, that the Seleucid heavy infantry was armed and organized along Roman lines at some point immediately prior to 166, is based on two passages in the literary sources and on one disputable piece of archaeological evidence. The material covering the Ptolemaic infantry is much more copious and the conclusion that it was comprehensively reorganized along Roman lines at roughly the same period seems inescapable. It is the certainty of the Ptolemaic evidence which puts the Seleucid evidence in its context."

Having just read Eckstein's Mediterranean Anarchy, Interstate War, and the Rise of Rome (Hellenistic Culture and Society), I must take exception to this author's assertion that "the Hellenistic phalanx was no match to the Roman manipular tactical system" - as Eckstein and others appear to disagree with him. However, in the General Conclusions, he also says -
"When Hannibal invaded Italy with less than 20,000 men, Polybius tells us that the Romans and their Allies were capable of mustering, at least on paper, 700,000 foot and 70,000 horse. It was Rome's capacity to mobilise such huge armies which defeated Macedon, rather than any innate superiority of the Roman military system. However many armies the incompetence of Roman military commanders could lose, there was always a near-inexhaustible reservoir of manpower to draw on. The first years of the Third Macedonian War saw many Roman reverses, but these did not matter. All that mattered was the last battle."

If you are interested in the subject, then this will be an interesting book for you. If you are interested in Hellenistic armies in general, then, while the esoteric arguments in the main sections may be uninteresting, there is a lot of interesting details in the various appendices:
P117: The evidence for Roman influence on Hellenistic armies before the Third Macedonian War
P125: The TAKTIKA of Poseidonius of Apameia
P135: The date of the "Soldiers' Tomb" at Sidon
P150: The date and purpose of the Daphne Parade
P159: Polybius on Antiochus IV
P173: The Kampyr-Tepe Terracotta
P176: Late Hellenistic Armies

The first Appendix discusses Pyrrhus's army reforms -"Ever since the Macedonian phalanx first emerged as a tactical formation, there existed a danger that the frontage would rupture if the phalanx was required to move forward for any distance over rough terrain... It seems that Pyrrhus was the first commander to attempt to solve this problem by alternating blocks of pike-men and medium infantry in the front line. According to Polybius... Pyrrhus made use of Roman weapons and of Italian troops, placing a maniple... of Italians alongside a phalanx block... in his battles with the Romans... The maniples of Italians would have served as flexible `joints' between the pike-blocks, enabling the latter to deliver a series of individual `hammer-blows' without disrupting the line. In this way the phalanx could `articulate' and a rupture in the line was prevented."

"An `articulating' phalanx also seems to have been the tactical formation used at the battle of Magnesia in 190 BC, where Antiochus the Great deployed the pikemen of the Seleucid army as follows:
..."There were 16,000 infantry armed in the Macedonian manner, who are called phalangites. They formed the centre of the line, and their frontage was divided into 10 parts; and these parts were separated by intervals in which two elephants were placed (Livvy)". "The appearance of the pahalanx was like that of a wall, of which the elephants were the towers (Appian)" Each of the elephants would have been accompanied by a guard of an uncertain number of infantry."

"We have seen that it was reasonably common practice for the phalanxes of third century Hellenistic armies to be drawn up in articulating phalanx blocks until the battle of Magnesia. It seems that this `articulating phalanx' was a military innovation of Pyrrhus, the result of his experiences in the Italian Campaign. Pyrrhus was clearly influenced by manipular tactics. There is no indication, however, that later armies used weapons other than the traditional ones of the phalanx." And so on.

This is a highly recommended book. I borrowed it from a library, but am now searching for a cheap copy to buy.
lolike
From the author's Introduction:
"The thesis advanced in this book is that both the Ptolemaic and Seleucid heavy infantry were re-armed and re-organized along Roman lines during the 160's BC. This was the first time that the military successes of Rome forced the Hellenistic world to accept the fact that the Hellenistic phalanx was no match to the Roman manipular tactical system, and that it was necessary to change the equipment, organisation and tactics of their heavy infantry."
"The evidence for military reform comes from an extremely varied range of sources, literary, epigraphic, papyrological and representational."

The author tells us that "Some of the ideas advanced in this book have previously appeared in two titles of a popular nature" - e.g. his books for Montvert Publications on the Ptolemaic and Seleucid Armies back in the mid-1990s. I didn't read them at the time, and now they are hideously expensive - come on Osprey, buy up the reprint rights!
Also - "My ideas of what happened in the infantry reforms of the 160s have changed somewhat" due to new research work.

The contents are:
P013: List of figures in text (36 of)
P015: Introduction
P017: Chapter 1 - Military Reform in the Ptolemaic Army (14 sections)
P084: Chapter 2 - Military Reform in the Seleucucid Army (8 sections)
P115: General Conclusions
P117: Appendices (7 of)
P180: Bibliography

As you can see, there is much more evidence for the Ptolemaic army, and this involves a lot of `technical' discussion, and a knowledge of the Greek alphabet will be invaluable, although not essential for following it. The Seleucid army has much less evidence, and is dependent upon a `reasoned' discussion. The Appendices contain a lot of interesting snippets, which I shall go into below.

From the author's General Conclusions:
"The proposition advanced in the second chapter, that the Seleucid heavy infantry was armed and organized along Roman lines at some point immediately prior to 166, is based on two passages in the literary sources and on one disputable piece of archaeological evidence. The material covering the Ptolemaic infantry is much more copious and the conclusion that it was comprehensively reorganized along Roman lines at roughly the same period seems inescapable. It is the certainty of the Ptolemaic evidence which puts the Seleucid evidence in its context."

Having just read Eckstein's Mediterranean Anarchy, Interstate War, and the Rise of Rome (Hellenistic Culture and Society), I must take exception to this author's assertion that "the Hellenistic phalanx was no match to the Roman manipular tactical system" - as Eckstein and others appear to disagree with him. However, in the General Conclusions, he also says -
"When Hannibal invaded Italy with less than 20,000 men, Polybius tells us that the Romans and their Allies were capable of mustering, at least on paper, 700,000 foot and 70,000 horse. It was Rome's capacity to mobilise such huge armies which defeated Macedon, rather than any innate superiority of the Roman military system. However many armies the incompetence of Roman military commanders could lose, there was always a near-inexhaustible reservoir of manpower to draw on. The first years of the Third Macedonian War saw many Roman reverses, but these did not matter. All that mattered was the last battle."

If you are interested in the subject, then this will be an interesting book for you. If you are interested in Hellenistic armies in general, then, while the esoteric arguments in the main sections may be uninteresting, there is a lot of interesting details in the various appendices:
P117: The evidence for Roman influence on Hellenistic armies before the Third Macedonian War
P125: The TAKTIKA of Poseidonius of Apameia
P135: The date of the "Soldiers' Tomb" at Sidon
P150: The date and purpose of the Daphne Parade
P159: Polybius on Antiochus IV
P173: The Kampyr-Tepe Terracotta
P176: Late Hellenistic Armies

The first Appendix discusses Pyrrhus's army reforms -"Ever since the Macedonian phalanx first emerged as a tactical formation, there existed a danger that the frontage would rupture if the phalanx was required to move forward for any distance over rough terrain... It seems that Pyrrhus was the first commander to attempt to solve this problem by alternating blocks of pike-men and medium infantry in the front line. According to Polybius... Pyrrhus made use of Roman weapons and of Italian troops, placing a maniple... of Italians alongside a phalanx block... in his battles with the Romans... The maniples of Italians would have served as flexible `joints' between the pike-blocks, enabling the latter to deliver a series of individual `hammer-blows' without disrupting the line. In this way the phalanx could `articulate' and a rupture in the line was prevented."

"An `articulating' phalanx also seems to have been the tactical formation used at the battle of Magnesia in 190 BC, where Antiochus the Great deployed the pikemen of the Seleucid army as follows:
..."There were 16,000 infantry armed in the Macedonian manner, who are called phalangites. They formed the centre of the line, and their frontage was divided into 10 parts; and these parts were separated by intervals in which two elephants were placed (Livvy)". "The appearance of the pahalanx was like that of a wall, of which the elephants were the towers (Appian)" Each of the elephants would have been accompanied by a guard of an uncertain number of infantry."

"We have seen that it was reasonably common practice for the phalanxes of third century Hellenistic armies to be drawn up in articulating phalanx blocks until the battle of Magnesia. It seems that this `articulating phalanx' was a military innovation of Pyrrhus, the result of his experiences in the Italian Campaign. Pyrrhus was clearly influenced by manipular tactics. There is no indication, however, that later armies used weapons other than the traditional ones of the phalanx." And so on.

This is a highly recommended book. I borrowed it from a library, but am now searching for a cheap copy to buy.