By Donald Kagan, Gregory F. Viggiano
Men of Bronze takes up some of the most very important and fiercely debated matters in historical historical past and classics: how did archaic Greek hoplites struggle, and what position, if any, did hoplite conflict play in shaping the Greek polis? within the 19th century, George Grote argued that the phalanx conflict formation of the hoplite farmer citizen-soldier was once the driver at the back of a revolution in Greek social, political, and cultural associations. in the course of the 20th century students constructed and subtle this grand hoplite narrative with the aid of archaeology. yet over the last thirty years students have criticized approximately each significant guiding principle of this orthodoxy. certainly, the revisionists have persuaded many experts that the proof calls for a brand new interpretation of the hoplite narrative and a rewriting of early Greek heritage. Men of Bronze gathers top students to improve the present debate and convey it to a broader viewers of historical historians, classicists, archaeologists, and normal readers.
After explaining the old context and importance of the hoplite query, the ebook assesses and pushes ahead the talk over the conventional hoplite narrative and demonstrates why it truly is at an important turning aspect. rather than achieving a consensus, the members have sharpened their variations, delivering new facts, causes, and theories concerning the foundation, nature, approach, and strategies of the hoplite phalanx and its impression on Greek tradition and the increase of the polis.
The members contain Paul Cartledge, Lin Foxhall, John Hale, Victor Davis Hanson, Donald Kagan, Peter Krentz, Kurt Raaflaub, Adam Schwartz, Anthony Snodgrass, Hans van Wees, and Gregory Viggiano.
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Additional info for Men of Bronze: Hoplite Warfare in Ancient Greece
The famous Chigi vase offered the strongest case for the revolution in tactics (see fig. 2-8). . ”67 Lorimer explains: Each side forms a hoplite phalanx, pure and unadulterated; every article of hoplite equipment is plainly represented and nothing alien to it, and the tactics—hand-to-hand fighting with the spear—are purely hoplite. 68 Some of the essential points include the presence of hoplite equipment, the shield with the porpax and antilabe, the metal corselet and greaves, and the fighting style, close combat with a thrusting instead of a throwing spear.
The Hoplite Debate 5 [The poleis] exhibit the first evidences of new and important political ideas in the Greek mind,—the separation of legislative and executive powers; the former vested in a collective body, not merely deliberating but finally deciding,— while the latter is confided to temporary individual magistrates, responsible to that body at the end of their period in office. 18 The second revolution took place when the usurpers Grote calls Despots subverted the first oligarchies. 20 This period occurred during the progress of the seventh and sixth centuries, with the expansion of wealth, power, and population.
But for Nilsson, much like Grote, the rise of the polis was inconceivable without the emergence of the middling hoplites, their values, and their ability to demand political change. 63 She dated the adoption of hoplite tactics and equipment in the most important poleis to the first half of the seventh century. The introduction of the new shield caused an immediate change in tactics. The momentous change from the essentially long-range fighting of the eighth century involved a single structural alteration in the round shield slung on a telamon which was in vogue, an alteration designed to make it afford the maximum of protection to troops in close formation so long as they stood firm; in the case of flight it became a mere encumbrance and was fairly likely to be thrown away.
Men of Bronze: Hoplite Warfare in Ancient Greece by Donald Kagan, Gregory F. Viggiano