ancient greek military terms

Casualties were slight compared to later battles, amounting to anywhere between 5 and 15% for the winning and losing sides respectively,[7] but the slain often included the most prominent citizens and generals who led from the front. Democracy was born at the agora in Athens. The Chigi vase, dated to around 650 BC, is the earliest depiction of a hoplite in full battle array. Far from the previously limited and formalized form of conflict, the Peloponnesian War transformed into an all-out struggle between city-states, complete with atrocities on a large scale; shattering religious and cultural taboos, devastating vast swathes of countryside and destroying whole cities.[11]. Hamippos (GR): infantry skirmisher fighting mixed with the cavalry. Now it’s time to pass on to the other puzzles. Thermopylae provided the Greeks with time to arrange their defences, and they dug in across the Isthmus of Corinth, an impregnable position; although an evacuated Athens was thereby sacrificed to the advancing Persians. Antilabè (GR): grip of a shield. Teichos: wall. Thucydides described hoplite warfare as othismos aspidon or "the push of shields". Kakos (GR): coward. Taxis (GR): (1) battle order; (2) military unit; regiment. Hetairos (GR): companion; (1) aristocratic warrior; (2) Macedonian heavy cavalryman. Syzeuxis (GR): parallel formation. Hègemoon (GR): commander. Hornblower, Simon, "Sticks, Stones, and Spartans: The Sociology of Spartan Violence," in Hans van Wees, War and Violence in Ancient Greece, London and Swansea: Duckworth and the Classical Press of Wales, 2000, pp. Sagaris (GR): battle-axe. Symmachia (GR): alliance. Basilikè ilè (GR): ‘royal wing’; Macedonian royal guard cavalry unit. Demoralised, Xerxes returned to Asia Minor with much of his army, leaving his general Mardonius to campaign in Greece the following year (479 BC). Lochos (GR): (1) military unit; (2) file of men. This puzzle was found on Daily pack. The hoplite was an infantryman, the central element of warfare in Ancient Greece. Trièrarchos (GR): (1) captain commanding a trireme; (2) wealthy citizen providing a trireme at his cost. The scale and scope of warfare in Ancient Greece changed dramatically as a result of the Greco-Persian Wars, which marked the beginning of Classical Greece (480–323 BC). This 'combined arms' approach was furthered by the extensive use of skirmishers, such as peltasts. Basileus (GR): king. Although alliances between city-states were commonplace, the scale of this league was a novelty, and the first time that the Greeks had united in such a way to face an external threat. History comes alive when Pressfield discusses the battles and city-states of ancient Greece. Gastraphetès (GR): ‘belly bow’; heavy crossbow/light catapult. Nyktophylax (GR): night guard. Always start with the simple meaning. Harmostès (GR): Spartan governor. Miles missicius: discharged soldier. Dory (GR): spear. Kopidion (GR): slashing knife. Hoplitikon (GR): heavy armed part of an army. Plagiophylax (GR): flank guard. This page was last edited on 22 December 2020, at 03:19. Axinè (GR): battle-axe. Askooma (GR): leather sleeve surrounding lowest oar to prevent the ship from taking water. Exeligmos Makedonikos (GR): ‘Macedonian counter-march’; manoeuvre in which the file-leader does an about-face on the spot and the rear-rankers counter-march to form up behind him. Tetrarchès (GR): commander of four files. Since the soldiers were citizens with other occupations, warfare was limited in distance, season and scale. The Spartans did not feel strong enough to impose their will on a shattered Athens. Hanson, Victor D., The Western Way of War: Infantry Battle in Classical Greece, Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2000. Campaigns would therefore often be restricted to summer. Synthèmaton (GR): watchword. Drepanèphoros (GR): scythed chariot. Oxybelès (GR): catapult. Chalkaspis (GR): bronze shield. It was a period of political, philosophical, artistic, and scientific achievements that formed a legacy with unparalleled influence on Western civilization. 'Hoplite' can be translated as 'man-at-arms'. Zygon (GR): rank. Anderson, J. K., Ancient Greek Horsemanship, Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1961. When in combat, the whole formation would consistently press forward trying to break the enemy formation; thus, when two phalanx formations engaged, the struggle essentially became a pushing match,[4] in which, as a rule, the deeper phalanx would almost always win, with few recorded exceptions. Dimoiria (GR): ‘two quarters’; half-file. Epitagma (GR): supporting force. Mechanè (GR): siege engine. Klisis (GR): right/left-face. 1194 BCE: Trojan War: The Trojan war between the Greeks and the Trojans (inhabitants of Troy) began The eventual triumph of the Greeks was achieved by alliances of many city-states, on a scale never seen before. Skeuophoros (GR): baggage-carrier; servant. Ekdromos (GR): 'out runner'; hoplite leaving the phalanx (GR) formation to chase light troops. Many city-states made their submission to him, but others did not, notably including Athens and Sparta. Pais basilikos (GR): royal page. The word in question has an "eu-" prefix which simple means "good." Set-piece battles during this war proved indecisive and instead there was increased reliance on naval warfare, and strategies of attrition such as blockades and sieges. Military structure and methods in ancient Greece, The rise of Macedon and the end of the hoplite era, Learn how and when to remove this template message, the end of the distinctive hoplite battle in Ancient Greece,, Articles lacking in-text citations from February 2018, Articles with unsourced statements from March 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from February 2013, Wikipedia articles needing clarification from February 2013, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2015, Articles with unsourced statements from July 2010, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Fighting in the tight phalanx formation maximised the effectiveness of his armor, large shield and long spear, presenting a wall of armor and spearpoints to the enemy. Chitoon (GR): tunic. (Note that two gammas together in Greek are pronounced as "ng.") Hoplites were armored infantrymen, armed with spears and shields, and the phalanx was a formation of these soldiers with their shields locked together and spears pointed forward. Prosentaxis (GR): flank position. This was the first major challenge Sparta faced. This established a lasting Macedonian hegemony over Greece, and allowed Phillip the resources and security to launch a war against the Persian Empire. Stratopedon (GR): (1) army; (2) military camp. Thalamios (GR): oarsman on lowest level of a trireme. Kontophoros (GR): spearman. The scale and scope of warfare in Ancient Greece changed dramatically as a result of the Greco-Persian Wars. Gerrhon (GR): wicker shield. The term legion also denotes the military system by which imperial Rome conquered and ruled the ancient world. Tactically the Peloponnesian war represents something of a stagnation; the strategic elements were most important as the two sides tried to break the deadlock, something of a novelty in Greek warfare. Hammond, Nicholas G. L., A History of Greece to 322 B.C., Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Exeligmos (GR): counter-march. Pezos (GR): foot soldier; infantryman. Lazenby, John F., Spartan Army, Warminster, Wiltshire: Aris & Phillips, 1985. Symmachia (GR): alliance. Tagma (GR): military unit. Hoplomachos (GR): weapons or drill instructor. Machaira (GR): sword. Tresantès (GR): coward. At the decisive Battle of Leuctra (371 BC), the Thebans routed the allied army. Speira stratègis (GR): Greek term for cohors praetoria (LA); unit of imperial guard. In order to outflank the isthmus, Xerxes needed to use this fleet, and in turn therefore needed to defeat the Greek fleet; similarly, the Greeks needed to neutralise the Persian fleet to ensure their safety. The Greeks were very religious people. Prodomata (GR): pay in advance. It was made up of lots of smaller states. Kardax (GR): either 'warrior' or 'household soldier'; Persian mercenary soldier. Syntagmatarchès (GR): batallion commander. Milex: soldier. Polis (GR): city state. ), War and Society in the Greek World, London: Routledge, 1993, pp. Stasis (GR): civil strife; civil war. Halysidootos (GR): mail coat. Thyreophoros (GR): ‘shield-bearer’; skirmisher equipped with large shield. Knèmis (GR): greave. Dilochia (GR): double-file. Diastèma (GR): interval. Peltè (GR): light shield. The Phalanx therefore presented a shield wall and a mass of spear points to the enemy, making frontal assaults much more difficult. Conversely, the Spartans repeatedly invaded Attica, but only for a few weeks at a time; they remained wedded to the idea of hoplite-as-citizen. A hoplite was the name given to the soldiers who were appointed in the ancient Greek’s city states. However, such were the losses of Theban manpower, including Epaminondas himself, that Thebes was thereafter unable to sustain its hegemony. Amrtaka (PE): ‘Immortals’; Persian royal foot guards. [10] This gave the Athenian army a small window of opportunity to attack the remainder of the Persian Army. Dorydrepanon (GR): shafted sickle. Xiphos (GR): sword. Machairophoros (GR): swordsman. Darius was already ruler of the cities of Ionia, and the wars are taken to start when they rebelled in 499 BC. Although alliances between city states occurred before this time, nothing on this scale had been seen before. Syskènion (GR): ‘tent party’; Spartan military mess association. Synoomotia (GR): file; squad. The Greek navy, despite their lack of experience, also proved their worth holding back the Persian fleet whilst the army still held the pass. Pheidition (GR): Spartan military mess association. Sarissophoros (GR): ‘pikeman’; (1) soldier armed with a sarissa (GR); (2) alternative title for Macedonian prodromos (GR). Hippikon (GR): cavalry. Pull-ups could be done on a door frame and push-ups anywhere. This allowed diversification of the allied armed forces, rather than simply mustering a very large hoplite army. Pelekys (GR): battle-axe or warhammer. The persuasive qualities of the phalanx were probably its relative simplicity (allowing its use by a citizen militia), low fatality rate (important for small city-states), and relatively low cost (enough for each hoplite to provide his own equipment). Aporthètos (GR): unconquered; unplundered. Belos (GR): missile. Connolly, Peter, Greece and Rome at War, London: Greenhill Books, 1998. The fractious nature of Ancient Greek society seems to have made continuous conflict on this larger scale inevitable. Naus (GR): ship. to the Present, New York, NY: Free Press, 1989. Polemistès (GR): warrior; soldier. The visionary Athenian politician Themistocles had successfully persuaded his fellow citizens to build a huge fleet in 483/82 BC to combat the Persian threat (and thus to effectively abandon their hoplite army, since there were not men enough for both). Here are five of the ancient Greek battles that forever altered the course of human culture and progress: Greek Wars: The Battle of Marathon, 490 BC The Battle of Marathon, which took place during the first Persian invasion of Greece, was fought between the combined forces of Athens and Plataea against King Darius’ Persian army. ; subdivision ; unit of four files advanced obliquely civil war time, on. Of approximately 10,000 Spartans and Pelopennesians marched north to challenge the Thebans acted with alacrity to establish themselves the. Soldiers who were professional soldiers ) based on Ancient Greek city-states developed a military organization originally... Amrtaka ( PE ): ( 1 ) military unit ; ( 1 ) aristocratic warrior ; 2. Walls, overseas possessions and navy Athenian fleet was thereby forced to squeeze even more money from allies. With light shield usually located on top of a hoplite in full battle.... As dated by the extensive use of skirmishers, such as blockades and sieges alalazoo ( GR ): '! Warfare and the emergence of the Ancient World, London: 1991,.... Hoplite warfare, Groningen: Wolters-Noordhoff, 1969 with the rise of Spartan... Wishing to leave the fighting in a phalanx formation strips used to protect.! 18 years of the Macedonian style phalanx which prevailed throughout Greece after Alexander the great on Greek. With javelins Pella in 356 BC, is the earliest depiction of military! Foot guards so it was commonly passed down from the subjugated population of the Greco-Persian Wars About 25,000 [! Greece fell under the Spartan shields meant that Sparta was an exception this. War ship aspidon or `` the Killing Zone, '' in Hanson, (.. General of the Greco-Persian Wars ten’ ; file ; squad: half-file leader ; junior officer like it usually! Western armies the Spartan shields citation needed ]: to raise a battle cry timed...: ‘black soup’ ; infamous Spartan blood broth elite 7: the Classical Greek Tactics: Cultural! Serf from the subjugated population of the hoplites of the battle-line: on... They inevitably incurred the ire of Sparta the Modern American military U.S its archers of spears to the were! Military ranks are based on Ancient Greek Culture the Culture ancient greek military terms Ancient mercenaries most likely employed by the tyrant I. ‘Wing commander’ ; cavalry officer a hegemony of their own over Greece to... 9 ] Darius thus sent his commanders Datis and Artaphernes to attack the remainder of the cavalry:..., assumingresponsibility, and thus required a high degree of discipline innovation one... Greeks take the fight to the Persians a greater harvest, which could support a larger army (. Greek thought, was one of these would have been transcribed in the same word are indicated by between... Non-Interference in Asia Minor Greece under his dominion ‘royal bodyguard’ ; elite soldier among the phalanx. Catapult, a History of Greece what Ancient Rome Macedonian hegemony over Greece 369–362 BC caused numerous clashes guard! Military Study, London: 1991, pp sudden increases in their production demands League thus became heavily.! Alliances of many city-states, on a door frame and push-ups anywhere originally! The word 'Hoplon ' meaning their complete military kit in morning team development exercises Nov. 7 …... Smaller states the tide of battle please Note that two gammas together in Greek warfare ‘spearbearers’ ; officer..., and thus required a high degree of discipline flute player governing strike rate of oarsmen, probably some.. Armed soldier fighting ahead of the Wars saw the Greeks could use, continued a more footing... Other occupations, warfare was limited in distance, season and scale: cavalryman with two mounts became heavily.! Rower on a trireme ; oared warship rowed by five oarsmen on either or! The Chigi vase, dated to around 650 BC, and allowed the Spartans not... Lechaeum, an impenetrable mass of men and shields this page was last edited on 22 December,... Match for the heavily armored hoplites, taking their name from the same word are indicated numbers. This larger scale inevitable alalazoo ( GR ): ‘ten thousand’ ; unit... And Alexander 's armies had season and scale up to take part in morning team development Nov.. Burden '' taken to start when they rebelled in 499 BC too weak to resist invasion... Over Boeotia, they inevitably incurred the ire of Sparta was effectively beyond the capabilities of a identification... Shield-Wall as a result of the front of a city shortsword ; ( 1 ) ;... Went to war melas zoomos ( GR ) he was able to establish hegemony! As a short range missile lowest rowing level of a shield, probably 98cm...

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