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[44] It is indicated in the Military Decree of Amphipolis that the phalangites wore the kotthybos, a form of defence of uncertain nature. The Paeones had been conquered and reduced to tributary status by Philip II. Aristotle, considered by some … Greek warfare was still dominated by the hoplite, armoured spearman who fought in the close-knit ranks of the phalanx. [21] It is a common mistake to portray the Companion cavalry as a force able to burst through compact infantry lines. They were unmatched in the pre-stirrup Ancient world in their ability to retain their seat and the control of their weapons through the impact of a charge. The organization of the army was based on the decimal system, employed by Oghuz Khagan. Two powerful city-states rose to dominate Greece. The Companion cavalry, or Hetairoi (Ἑταῖροι), were the elite arm of the Macedonian army, and have been regarded as the finest quality cavalry in the ancient world. Macedonians and other Greeks (especially Thessalian cavalry) and a wide range of mercenaries from across the Aegean and Balkans were employed by Phillip. It would appear that the same unit of cavalry was known by both names. The phalanx of the Ancient Macedonian kingdom and the later Hellenistic successor states was a development of the hoplite phalanx. Although it did not succeed in every battle, the army of Philip II was able to successfully adopt the military tactics of its enemies, such as the embolon (i.e. At close range, such large weapons were of little use, but an intact phalanx could easily keep its enemies at a distance; the weapons of the first five rows of men all projected beyond the front of the formation, so that there were more spearpoints than available targets at any given time. By the time Alexander campaigned in India, and subsequently, the cavalry had been drastically reformed and included thousands of horse-archers from Iranian peoples such as the Dahae (prominent at the Battle of Hydaspes). As had been anticipated, the Illyrians stretched their formation in order to bring the Macedonian left wing into action. To the right of these pezhetairoi were the far more mobile hypaspists also called shield-bearers. Being a Landlocked country, Macedonia does not have a navy. The Macedonian army was one of the first military forces to use 'combined arms tactics', using a variety of specialised troops to fulfill specific battlefield roles in order to form a greater whole. These helmets were worn by the heavy infantry. The phalangites were armed with longer pikes and as a result the phalanx itself became less mobile and adaptable than it had been in Alexander's era. [25] The Thessalian cavalry was famed for its use of rhomboid formations, said to have been developed by the Thessalian Tagos (head of the Thessalian League) Jason of Pherae. The individual javelin would have a throwing thong attached to the shaft behind its point of balance. Properly nice figures sculpted by Steve Saleh and Nick Collier with Mark Copplestone, they paint up a treat, pics below are armoured phalanx prior to adding the shields and basing effects. The army did not provide much social mobility, and it also took quite some time to complete one’s service. When taking part in rapid forced marches or combat in broken terrain, so common in the eastern Persian Empire, it appears that they wore little more than a helmet and a cloak (exomis) so as to enhance their stamina and mobility. The thorax is, however, shown being worn by an infantryman on the Alexander Sarcophagus, however, this figure is equipped with an 'aspis' shield and may depict a hypaspist, rather than a phalangite. Especially numerous were the Thracians; the Thracian peltasts performed the same function in battle as the Agrianians, but for the left wing of the army. They had for the first time conducted successful sieges against strongly held and fortified positions. Its actual length is unknown, but apparently it was twice as long as the dory. (illustrator) (1986), This page was last edited on 5 December 2020, at 09:16. Given the sometimes confusing accounts from ancient writers, historians can only deduce that the Somatophylakes or Bodyguards probably comprised a separate unit within the ancient Macedonian army. The current system of ranks and insignia was introduced in 1991 thus replacing the former Yugoslav Army insignia, on which it is based. The Army of Alexander the Great: Composition. The force that under the command of Alexander the Great invaded and conquered the Persian Empire, thus ensuring the extension of the Hellenistic culture to most of the world known at that time, was composed in total from 40,000 Experienced and well-armed fighters.. a) Cavalry. [22], The original 1,800 Companions who accompanied Alexander to Asia were augmented by 300 reinforcements arriving from Macedon after the first year of campaigning. The Macedonian phalangite shield is described by Asclepiodotus (Tactica, 5) as being eight palms wide (equivalent to 62 cm or 24 inches) and "not too hollow". [70] During his campaign in Asia against the Persian Empire he formed a hipparchia (i.e. [99], All of the above forms of armour could be described as thorakes (plural of thorax). It is possible that the prodromoi, due to their skill in wielding long lances and their extensive battle experience, were considered more valuable in the role of shock cavalry, especially after the departure of the Thessalian cavalry. It is recorded that Alexander ordered the burning of old armours, which suggests that the armour in question was non-metallic. They are cast in ranks for conventional basing . [78] The cutting swords are particularly associated with cavalry use, especially by Xenophon, but pictorial representations would suggest that all three sword types were used by cavalry and infantry without obvious distinction. Defences of a similar appearance composed of quilted textile are also described. Considered semi-barbarous by some metropolitan Greeks, the Macedonians were a martial people; they drank deeply of unwatered wine (the very mark of a barbarian) and no youth was considered to be fit to sit with the men at table until he had killed, on foot with a spear, a wild boar. It was developed by Philip II, and later used by his son Alexander the Great in his conquest of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. As a consequence, scholarship is largely reliant on the works of Diodorus Siculus and Arrian, plus the incomplete writings of Curtius, all of whom lived centuries later than the events they describe. [103], Xenophon mentions a type of armour called "the hand" to protect the left, bridle, arm of heavy cavalrymen, though there is no supporting evidence for its widespread use. This gave it a marching speed that contemporary armies could not hope to match — on occasion forces surrendered to Alexander simply because they were not expecting him to show up for several more days. According to Aelian, a syntagma was accompanied by five additional individuals to the rear: a herald (to act as a messenger), a trumpeter (to sound out commands), an ensign (to hold the unit's standard), an additional officer (called ouragos), and a servant. [112], Alexander the Great appears to have been one of the first generals to employ artillery on the open field of battle, rather than in a siege. Recent reconstructions of the sarissa and phalangite shield showed that the shoulder strap supporting the shield effectively helps to transfer some of the weight of the sarissa from the left arm to the shoulders when the sarissa is held horizontally in its fighting position. Although a Spartan boy learned enough to be literate, more importantly, he learned how to endure … The sources also indicate that the phalangites were on occasion armed with javelins. The phalanx of the Ancient Macedonian kingdom and the later Hellenistic successor states was a development of the hoplite phalanx. At this time, Alexander abandoned the regional organisation of the ilai, choosing their officers regardless of their origins. In the modern Hellenic Army the rank of Taxiarchos (abbreviated Ταξχος) is equivalent to Brigadier General with a NATO Code OF-6. This was probably undertaken to allow for the increase in size of each squadron, as reinforcements and amalgamations meant that the Companion cavalry grew in size. The first line was called the kontarion, the first four lines were made up of skutatoi the remaining three of toxotai. ... Macedonian Phalanx. Greaves could be worn by both heavy infantry and heavy cavalry, but they are not in great evidence in contemporary depictions. These infantrymen would have been equipped as hoplites with the traditional hoplite panoply consisting of a thrusting spear (doru), bronze-faced hoplon shield and body armour. At Gaugamela, the Thracians fielded four ilai and were about 500 strong. [52], In terms of weaponry, they were probably equipped in the style of a traditional Greek hoplite with a thrusting spear or doru (shorter and less unwieldy than the sarissa) and a large round shield (hoplon). Philip II introduced the formation, probably in emulation of Thracian and Scythian cavalry, though the example of the rhomboid formation adopted by Macedon's southern neighbours, the Thessalians, must also have had some effect. [107][108], Light infantry javelineers would have used a version of the pelte (Ancient Greek: πέλτη) shield, from whence their name, peltast, derived. In battle, the Greek hoplites had a less active role than the Macedonian phalangites and hypaspists. Alexander's cousin Pyrrhus of Epirus is described as wearing a helmet with cheek pieces in the shape of ram's heads. The army of Alexander the Great could be called Macedonian because it fought for the Macedonian king. The ranks are divided into four main groups, depending on the position and function: Generals, Officers, NC officers and Soldiers. The Thessalians were considered the finest cavalry of Greece. Ancient Macedonian army, Military ranks of ancient Greece, Military ranks by country, Ancient Greek military terminology Military ranks of ancient Macedon Category page Ancient Alexandrian Macedonian (2) Ancient Athenian (1) Ancient Boeotian Greeks (1) Ancient German (1) Ancient republican Roman (2) Ancient republican Roman command vignette (1) Ancient Spartans (2) Ancient Thracians (1) Baron Larrey (1) Basing Techniques (3) Basing Tutorial (1) Belgian Carabiniers (1) Belgian infantry (1) Dutch militia 1815 (1) Dutch Staff 1815 (1) [64][65], Philip II was also able to field archers, including mercenary Cretan archers and perhaps some native Macedonians. The word 'hypaspists' translates into English as 'shield-bearers'. It was created and made formidable by King Philip II of Macedon; previously the army of Macedon had been of little account in the politics of the Greek world, and Macedonia had been regarded as a second-rate power.. The thong was wound around the shaft and hooked over one or two fingers. In a remarkably short time, this led to the creation of one of the finest military machines of the ancient world. He raised troops and made his army the single fount of wealth, honour and power in the land; the unruly chieftains of Macedonia became the officers and elite cavalrymen of the army, the highland peasants became the footsoldiers. The retreat of the Ottoman army from Macedonia succeeded the desperate effort of the Greek and Bulgarian forces to reach the city of Thessalonica, the "single prize of the first Balkan War" for whose status no prior agreements were done. [98] It is to be doubted that this type of armour was worn by persons other than of royal or very exalted rank. The Macedonian Army – Meet the Elite Ancient Soldiers Who Made Alexander ‘Great’ by MilitaryHistoryNow.com • 12 October, 2020 • 0 Comments Alexander the Great’s wild successes were as much the result of his father Phillip II’s military reforms as … Cretan archers were famed for their powerful bows, firing arrows with large, heavy heads of cast bronze. However, greaves are mentioned in the Military Decree of Amphipolis and a pair of greaves, one shorter than the other, were found in the Vergina Tomb. WikiMili. After the infantry bloodied itself, the cavalry wheeled around and smashed the Illyrians. The traditional Greek hoplite used his spear single-handed, as the large hoplon shield needed to be gripped by the left hand, therefore the Macedonian phalangite gained in both weapon reach and in the added force of a two handed thrust. Prior to the reign of Philip II (382–336 BC) Macedonia was a comparatively minor state with a mixed Hellenic and Barbarian culture. Every citizen was required to defend the city in the event of war. The Macedonian army perfected the co-ordination of different troop types, an early example of combined arms tactics — the heavy infantry phalanx, skirmish infantry, archers, light cavalry and heavy cavalry, and siege engines were all deployed in battle; each troop type being used to its own particular advantage and creating a synergy of mutual support. The phalanx finally met its end in the Ancient world when the more flexible Roman manipular tactics contributed to the defeat and partition of Macedon in the 3rd and 2nd centuries B.C. The army of the Kingdom of Macedon was among the greatest military forces of the ancient world. 7.23.3-4). The cavalry forced their way into the Illyrian ranks and were followed by elements of the phalanx. A figure from the lid of a bronze dinos or cauldron of Etruscan origin excavated at Santa Maria di Capua Vetere, sixth century B.C.E. [116] Because all the competing Hellenistic armies were employing the same tactics, these weaknesses were not immediately apparent. The sarissa was the pike used by the ancient Macedonian army. They were often used to cover the right flank of the army in battle, being posted to the right of the Companion cavalry, a position of considerable honour. The prodromoi then assumed a purely battlefield role as shock cavalry. The extent to which phalangites were armoured is unclear, and may have changed over time. [97], A complete cuirass of plate iron, decorated with gold and modelled on the form of the linothorax, was discovered in the Macedonian royal burial at Vergina. [91] The Boeotian helmet, though it did not have cheek pieces, had a flaring rim which was folded into a complex shape offering considerable protection to the face. The inner face of the shield was of wood or a multilayered leather construction, with a band for the forearm fixed to the centre of the shield. 11 Pins • 27 followers. The Macedonian Army - Alexander the Great 1. The equipment of the Macedonian phalangite is believed to have been influenced by the 'peltast' developed by the Athenian general Iphicrates. They carried their arrows in a quiver with a protective flap over its opening. [56] However, in regards to both the argyraspides and chalkaspides ('bronze shields'), Malcolm Errington asserts that "these titles were probably not functional, perhaps not even official. Such machines could shower the defenders of a city with missiles and create a breach in the walls themselves. This did not include camp followers. Subsequently, despite the adoption of the lance, it is highly probable that the Companion cavalry continued to employ javelins when on scouting or skirmishing missions. Although not as heavily armed - carrying only a shorter spear or javelin - they served a special role in both Philip and … At Gaugamela, the Greek infantry formed the defensive rear of the box formation Alexander arranged his army into, while the Macedonians formed its front face. It was created and made formidable by King Philip II of Macedon; previously the army of Macedon had been of little account in the politics of the Greek world, and Macedonia had been regarded as a second-rate power. [45] Instead, he claims that breastplates were only worn by military officers, while pikemen wore the kotthybos along with their helmets and greaves, wielding a dagger as a secondary weapon along with their shields. There is some ambiguity concerning the use of the term prodromoi by the sources; it may have been used to describe any cavalry undertaking a scouting, skirmishing or screening mission, or it may have denoted a single unit, or indeed both. [12], The Companion cavalry, or Hetairoi (Ἑταῖροι), were the elite arm of the Macedonian army, and were the offensive force that made the decisive attack in most of the battles of Alexander the Great. The Hellenistic armies of the other Macedonian successor-states of the Diadochi period, which followed the death of Alexander, also displayed a continuation of earlier Macedonian equipment, organisation and tactics. [46] Polybius (18.31.5), emphasises that the phalanx required flat open places for its effective deployment, as broken country would hinder and break up its formation. The thong made the javelin spin in flight, which improved accuracy, and the extra leverage increased the power of the throw and the range achievable. However, it was the reforms in organisation, drill and tactics introduced by Philip II that transform… Manoeuvres and drills were made into competitive events, and the truculent Macedonians vied with each other to excel. Polemarch was the rank that was assigned to the senior most Military Position official which meant warlord or war leader. C. Chiliarch; H. Hipparchus (cavalry officer) N. Navarch; P. Pentakosiarch; Phrourarch; S. Somatophylakes; Strategos; T. Taxiarch ; Trierarch; This page was last edited on 1 April 2013, at 20:07 (UTC). The Thessalian and Greek cavalry would have been armed similarly to the Companions. The sarissa would have been useless in siege warfare and other combat situations requiring a less cumbersome weapon. There is no evidence that the Macedonian cavalry ever used a two-handed grip on their lances, as did later Sarmatian and Roman lancers. Enomotiai were now drawn up deeper: three ranks of twelve men. Long story short, we talked about an ancient project and as you might suspect, a few days later I ordered the first miniatures for my Macedonian army for Lion Rampant. The Macedonian army could also deploy various forms of suspended, metal-tipped, rams. [4] Macedonian cavalry, wearing muscled cuirasses, became renowned in Greece during and after their involvement in the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC), at times siding with either Athens or Sparta and supplemented by local Greek infantry instead of relying on Macedonian infantry. They had reached a showdown. Some remained with the army as mercenaries, yet these too were sent home a year later when the army reached the Oxus River. Map of Iran under Arsacid Dynasty (248 BCE - 224 CE) Fig. The length of these pikes was such that they had to be wielded with two hands in battle. This fits with the overall tendency in the fourth century BC to make formations deeper: a development that eventually culminated, via Thebes, in the Macedonian phalanx of Philip II and his son, Alexander. The rank and file (volunteers as well as conscripts) were issued their kit gratis from government-operated … Aug 2, 2020 - Explore Joseph Coates's board "Macedonian and Greek miniatures" on Pinterest. By Alexander’s time, torsion-powered artillery was in use. [33], In 329 BC, Alexander, while in Sogdiana, created a 1,000 strong unit of horse archers that was recruited from various Iranian peoples. Disbanded and sent home their employers and mercenaries the shoulder pieces standing vertical when not laced down to the cavalry... Find water and executed one for taking his arms off against orders ( Aelian VH the walls themselves Aretes. Evidenced by the army as mercenaries but a form of linothorax with it a fairly baggage... Also raised from Macedonia proper were supplemented by considerable forces from other territories vertical panels, that enclosed the.., helmets of the Persian Empire at full strength, despite casualties, by continual through... Lance, javelins and, in close order shoulder to shoulder remained true through to the hypaspists ( )! Primary weapon a sarissa, which protected the lower leg ] Sekunda, however was... 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