Battle of Issus
The invading Macedonian troops defeated Persia. After the Hellenic League soundly defeated the Persian satraps of Asia Minor at the Battle of the Granicus, Darius took personal command of his army and he gathered reinforcements and led his men in a surprise march behind the Hellenic advance to cut their line of supply. This forced Alexander to countermarch, setting the stage for the battle near the mouth of the Pinarus River, the battle took place south of the ancient town Issus, which is close to the present-day Turkish town of Iskenderun, on either side of a small river called Pinarus. At that location, the distance from the Gulf of Issus to the mountains is only 2.6 km. Speculation on the location of the Pinarus has taken place for over 80 years, older historians believed it to be the Deli Tchai river, but historians N. G. L. Alexander set out into Asia in 334 BC and defeated the local Persian satraps at the Battle of the Granicus and he proceeded to occupy all of Asia Minor, with the idea of capturing all coastal settlements so as to negate the power of the vastly superior Persian fleet.
He captured several important settlements such as Miletus in 334 BC and Halicarnassus, while Alexander was in Tarsus, he heard of Darius massing a great army in Babylon. Alexander kept his army at Tarsus but sent Parmenion ahead to occupy the coast around Issus. In November, Alexander received reports that the great Persian army had advanced into Syria to a town named Sochi, Alexander decided to mass his scattered army and advance south from Issus through the Pass of Jonah. Darius knew that Parmenion held the Pass of Jonah and thus chose a route of advance. The Persians captured Issus without opposition and cut off the hands of all the sick, now Darius found out he had placed his army behind the Hellenic League and had cut their supply lines. He advanced to the south and got no further than the river Pinarus before his scouts spotted Alexander marching north, Darius had to set up camp on this narrow coastal plain. There is much debate as to the motives of Alexander and Darius preceding Issus, Darius large army could not be supported in the field during winter and his cities in Phoenicia were already in unrest at the arrival of Alexander.
Darius was forced to move his army to a small battlefield. Darius instead moved north from Sochi and around the mountains, emerging behind Alexanders position and on his supply, thus Alexander was forced to march to Darius, who had caught him off guard in a large flanking maneuver. This gives the illusion that Darius was the one acting defensively, some ancient sources, who based their accounts on earlier Greek sources, estimated 600,000 Persian soldiers in total, while Diodorus and Justin estimated 400,000, and Curtius Rufus estimated 250,000. Modern historians find Arrians count of 600,000 men highly unlikely and they argue that the logistics of fielding more than 100,000 soldiers in battle was extremely difficult at the time. The size of the Hellenic army may not have exceeded 40,000 men, including their other allies, Alexanders army may have consisted of about 22,000 phalangites and hoplites,13,000 peltasts, and 5,850 cavalry
A cataphract was a form of armored heavy cavalry used in ancient warfare by a number of peoples in Western Eurasia and the Eurasian Steppe. The English word is derived from the Greek κατάφρακτος Kataphraktos, literally meaning armored or completely enclosed. Historically, the cataphract was a heavily armored horseman, with both the rider and steed draped from head to toe in scale armor, while typically wielding a kontos or lance as their weapon. Cataphracts served as either the elite cavalry or assault force for most empires and nations that fielded them, in several cases the term is used to denote a Parthian chariot. The adoption of cataphract-like cavalry formations took hold among the late Roman army during the late 3rd and 4th centuries. Kataphraktos is composed of the Greek root words, κατά, a preposition, and φρακτός, protected, the term first appears substantively in Latin, in the writings of Sisennus. The armored, whom they call cataphract, writing in the fourth century, described armor of any sort as cataphracts – which at the time of writing would have been either lorica segmentata or lorica hamata.
Ammianus Marcellinus, Roman soldier and historian of the century, mentions the. However, it appears with more frequency in Latin sources than in Greek throughout antiquity, the Byzantine historian Leo Diaconis calls them πανσιδήρους ἱππότας pansidearoos ippotas, which would translate as fully iron-clad knights. There is, some doubt as to what exactly cataphracts were in late antiquity, cataphract-like cavalry under the command of the Western Roman Empire, where Latin was the official tongue, always bore the Latinized variant of the original Greek name, Cataphractarii. Contemporary sources, sometimes imply that clibanarii were in fact a type of cavalryman. Two of these tribes are attested based upon evidence, the Mitanni. The Near East is generally believed to have been the point for where this first occurred. The Nisean would become renowned in the Ancient World and particularly in Ancient Persia as the mount of nobility and these warhorses, sometimes referred to as Nisean chargers, were highly sought after by the Greeks, and are believed to have influenced many modern horse breeds.
With the growing aggressiveness of cavalry in warfare, protection of the rider and this was especially true of peoples who treated cavalry as the basic arm of their military, such as the Ancient Persians, including the Medes and the successive Persian dynasties. Assyria and the Khwarezm region were significant to the development of cavalry during the 1st millennium BC. The further evolution of early forms of heavy cavalry in Western Eurasia is not entirely clear. The Greeks first encountered cataphracts during the Greco-Persian Wars of the 5th century BC with the Achaemenid Empire, the cataphract was widely adopted by the Seleucid Empire, the Hellenistic successors of Alexander the Greats kingdom who reigned over conquered Persia and Asia Minor after his death in 323 BC
The Alexander Sarcophagus is a late 4th century BC Hellenistic stone sarcophagus adorned with bas-relief carvings of Alexander the Great. The work is well preserved and has been celebrated for its high aesthetic achievement. It is considered the holding of the Istanbul Archaeology Museum. Waldemar Heckel argues that the sarcophagus was made for Mazaeus, a Persian noble, the sarcophagus is constructed of Pentelic marble retaining traces of its polychromy, in the form of a Greek temple. The carvings on one side of the piece depict Alexander fighting the Persians at the Battle of Issus. Volkmar von Graeve has compared the motif to the famous Alexander Mosaic at Naples, Alexander is shown mounted, wearing a lionskin on his head, and preparing to throw a spear at the Persian cavalry. A third mounted Macedonian figure is identified as Perdiccas. The opposite long side shows Alexander and the Macedonians hunting lions together with Abdalonymus and the Persians
Amphipolis is best known for the magnificent ancient Greek city, and Roman city, whose impressive remains can still be seen. Excavations in and around the city have revealed important buildings, ancient walls, at the nearby vast Kasta burial mound, an important ancient Macedonian tomb has recently been revealed. The unique and beautiful Lion of Amphipolis monument nearby is a destination for visitors. It is today a municipality in the Serres regional unit of Greece, the seat of the municipality is Rodolivos. A second attempt took place in 437 BC on the site under the guidance of Hagnon, son of Nicias. The city and its first walls date from this time, the new settlement took the name of Amphipolis, a name which is the subject of much debate about its etymology. However, a probable explanation is the one given by Julius Pollux. Amphipolis became the power base of the Athenians in Thrace and, consequently. The Athenian population remained very much in the minority in the city, for this reason Amphipolis remained an independent city and an ally of the Athenians, rather than a colony or member of the confederacy.
However, in 424 BC the Spartan general Brasidas easily took control of the city, a new Athenian force under the command of Cleon failed once more in 422 BC during the Battle of Amphipolis at which both Cleon and Brasidas lost their lives. Brasidas survived long enough to hear of the defeat of the Athenians and was buried at Amphipolis with impressive pomp, from on he was regarded as the founder of the city and honoured with yearly games and sacrifices. The city itself kept its independence until the reign of king Philip II despite several Athenian attacks, in 357 BC, Philip succeeded where the Athenians had failed and conquered the city, thereby removing the obstacle which Amphipolis presented to Macedonian control over Thrace. The city was not immediately incorporated into the Macedonian kingdom, and for some time preserved its institutions, the border of Macedonia was not moved further east, Philip sent a number of Macedonian governors to Amphipolis, and in many respects the city was effectively Macedonianized.
Nomenclature, the calendar and the currency were all replaced by Macedonian equivalents, the importance of the city in this period is shown by Alexander the Greats decision that it was one of the six cities at which large luxurious temples costing 1500 talents were built. Alexander prepared for campaigns here against Thrace in 335BC and the his army, the port was used as naval base during his campaigns in Asia. After Alexanders death, his wife Roxane and their small son Alexander IV were exiled by Cassander and murdered here, throughout Macedonian sovereignty Amphipolis was a strong fortress of great strategic and economic importance, as shown by inscriptions. Amphipolis became one of the stops on the Macedonian royal road, and on the Via Egnatia. Apart from the ramparts of the town, the gymnasium
Philip II of Macedon
Philip II of Macedon was the king of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon from 359 BC until his assassination in 336 BC. He was a member of the Argead dynasty of Macedonian kings, the son of King Amyntas III. However, his assassination led to the succession of his son Alexander. Philip was the youngest son of the king Amyntas III and Eurydice I, in his youth, Philip was held as a hostage in Thebes, which was the leading city of Greece. In 364 BC, Philip returned to Macedon, the deaths of Philips elder brothers, King Alexander II and Perdiccas III, allowed him to take the throne in 359 BC. Originally appointed regent for his infant nephew Amyntas IV, who was the son of Perdiccas III, Philips military skills and expansionist vision of Macedonian greatness brought him early success. He first had to remedy a predicament which had greatly worsened by the defeat against the Illyrians in which King Perdiccas himself had died. Using diplomacy, Philip pushed back the Paionians and Thracians promising tributes, momentarily free from his opponents, he concentrated on strengthening his internal position and, above all, his army.
Philip had married Audata, great-granddaughter of the Illyrian king of Dardania, this did not prevent him from marching against the Illyrians in 358 and crushing them in a ferocious battle in which some 7,000 Illyrians died. By this move, Philip established his authority inland as far as Lake Ohrid, the Athenians had been unable to conquer Amphipolis, which commanded the gold mines of Mount Pangaion. So Philip reached an agreement with Athens to lease the city to them after its conquest, after conquering Amphipolis, Philip kept both cities. As Athens had declared war against him, he allied Macedon with the Chalkidian League of Olynthus and he subsequently conquered Potidaea, this time keeping his word and ceding it to the League in 356. In 357 BC, Philip married the Epirote princess Olympias, who was the daughter of the king of the Molossians, Alexander was born in 356, the same year as Philips racehorse won at the Olympic Games. During 356 BC, Philip conquered the town of Crenides and changed its name to Philippi and he established a powerful garrison there to control its mines, which yielded much of the gold he used for his campaigns.
In the meantime, his general Parmenion defeated the Illyrians again, in 355–354 he besieged Methone, the last city on the Thermaic Gulf controlled by Athens. During the siege, Philip was injured in his eye, despite the arrival of two Athenian fleets, the city fell in 354. Philip attacked Abdera and Maronea, on the Thracian coast, Philip was involved in the Third Sacred War which had begun in Greece in 356. In summer 353 he invaded Thessaly, defeating 7,000 Phocians under the brother of Onomarchus, the latter however defeated Philip in the two succeeding battles
The kopis sword was a one-handed weapon. Early examples had a length of up to 65 cm. Later Macedonian examples tended to be shorter with a length of about 48 cm. The kopis had a blade that pitched forward towards the point, the edge being concave on the part of the sword nearest the hilt. Some scholars have claimed an Etruscan origin for the sword, as such swords have been found as early as the 7th century BC in Etruria, the kopis is often compared to the contemporary Iberian falcata and the more recent, and shorter, Nepalese kukri. The word itself is a Greek feminine singular noun, Greek heavy infantry hoplites favored straight swords, but the downward curve of the kopis made it especially suited to mounted warfare. Greek art shows Persian soldiers wielding the kopis or an axe rather than the straight-bladed Persian akinakes and it has been suggested that the yatagan, used in the Balkans and Anatolia during the Ottoman Period, was a direct descendant of the kopis. Falcata Khopesh Makhaira Xiphos Iron Age sword Illustration of Kopis Illustration of Kopis in Ancient Greek Art
The xiphos is a double-edged, one-handed Iron Age straight shortsword used by the ancient Greeks. It was a battlefield weapon for the Greek armies after the dory or javelin. The classic blade was generally about 50–60 cm long, although the Spartans supposedly started to use blades as short as 30 cm around the era of the Greco-Persian Wars, the xiphos sometimes has a midrib, or is diamond or lenticular in cross-section. It was generally hung from a baldric under the left arm, the xiphos was generally used only when the spear was discarded for close combat. Very few xiphoi seem to have survived, stones Glossary has the xiphos being a name used by Homer for a sword. The entry in the book says that the sword had a double-edged blade widest at about two-thirds of its length from the point, the name xiphos apparently means something in the way of penetrating light according to researcher and swordsmith Peter Johnsson. The xiphos leaf-shaped design lent itself to cutting and thrusting. The design has most likely been in existence since the appearance of the first swords, blades in bronze and iron are suitable for a leaf shape due to the softness of the metals in comparison to steel.
Bronze swords are cast and are more easily formed into a leaf shape than iron swords. The early xiphos was a bronze sword, in the classical period it would have been made of iron. The early Celtic La Tène short sword, contemporary with the xiphos, had a virtually identical design as the xiphos. The leaf-shaped short swords were not limited to Greece, as mentioned, Bronze leaf-shaped swords from as early as the late second millennium still survive. The Urnfield culture is associated with the use of the leaf shaped bronze short sword and it is generally thought that iron swords had replaced bronze swords by the early La Tène culture about 500BC. During the Halstatt culture a mixture of bronze and iron swords seem to have existed side by side, Iron tends to become severely oxidized over the years, and few iron swords have survived, in contrast to bronze swords that age very well. Thus, much is known regarding the sword during the Bronze Age, Bronze thrusting swords from the second millennium still exist in excellent condition.
The word is attested in Mycenaean Greek Linear B form as
It survived the fragmentation and fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD and continued to exist for an additional thousand years until it fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453. During most of its existence, the empire was the most powerful economic, several signal events from the 4th to 6th centuries mark the period of transition during which the Roman Empires Greek East and Latin West divided. Constantine I reorganised the empire, made Constantinople the new capital, under Theodosius I, Christianity became the Empires official state religion and other religious practices were proscribed. Finally, under the reign of Heraclius, the Empires military, the borders of the Empire evolved significantly over its existence, as it went through several cycles of decline and recovery. During the reign of Maurice, the Empires eastern frontier was expanded, in a matter of years the Empire lost its richest provinces and Syria, to the Arabs. This battle opened the way for the Turks to settle in Anatolia, the Empire recovered again during the Komnenian restoration, such that by the 12th century Constantinople was the largest and wealthiest European city.
Despite the eventual recovery of Constantinople in 1261, the Byzantine Empire remained only one of several small states in the area for the final two centuries of its existence. Its remaining territories were annexed by the Ottomans over the 15th century. The Fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Empire in 1453 finally ended the Byzantine Empire, the term comes from Byzantium, the name of the city of Constantinople before it became Constantines capital. This older name of the city would rarely be used from this point onward except in historical or poetic contexts. The publication in 1648 of the Byzantine du Louvre, and in 1680 of Du Canges Historia Byzantina further popularised the use of Byzantine among French authors, however, it was not until the mid-19th century that the term came into general use in the Western world. The Byzantine Empire was known to its inhabitants as the Roman Empire, the Empire of the Romans, the Roman Republic, and as Rhōmais. The inhabitants called themselves Romaioi and Graikoi, and even as late as the 19th century Greeks typically referred to modern Greek as Romaika and Graikika.
The authority of the Byzantine emperor as the legitimate Roman emperor was challenged by the coronation of Charlemagne as Imperator Augustus by Pope Leo III in the year 800. No such distinction existed in the Islamic and Slavic worlds, where the Empire was more seen as the continuation of the Roman Empire. In the Islamic world, the Roman Empire was known primarily as Rûm, the Roman army succeeded in conquering many territories covering the entire Mediterranean region and coastal regions in southwestern Europe and north Africa. These territories were home to different cultural groups, both urban populations and rural populations. The West suffered heavily from the instability of the 3rd century AD
Pompeii was an ancient Roman town-city near modern Naples, in the Campania region of Italy, in the territory of the comune of Pompei. Pompeii, along with Herculaneum and many villas in the area, was mostly destroyed and buried under 4 to 6 m of volcanic ash. Researchers believe that the town was founded in the seventh or sixth century BC by the Osci or Oscans. It came under the domination of Rome in the 4th century BC, by the time of its destruction,160 years later, its population was estimated at 11,000 people, and the city had a complex water system, an amphitheatre, and a port. The eruption destroyed the city, killing its inhabitants and burying it under tons of ash, the site was lost for about 1,500 years until its initial rediscovery in 1599 and broader rediscovery almost 150 years by Spanish engineer Rocque Joaquin de Alcubierre in 1748. The objects that lay beneath the city have been preserved for centuries because of the lack of air and these artefacts provide an extraordinarily detailed insight into the life of a city during the Pax Romana.
During the excavation, plaster was used to fill in the voids in the ash layers that once held human bodies and this allowed archaeologists to see the exact position the person was in when he or she died. Pompeii has been a tourist destination for over 250 years, today it has UNESCO World Heritage Site status and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Italy, with approximately 2.5 million visitors every year. Pompeii in Latin is a second declension plural, the ruins of Pompeii are located near the modern suburban town of Pompei. It stands on a formed by a lava flow to the north of the mouth of the Sarno River. Today it is some distance inland, but in ancient times was nearer to the coast, Pompeii is about 8 km away from Mount Vesuvius. It covered a total of 64 to 67 hectares and was home to approximately 11,000 to 11,500 people on the basis of household counts and it was a major city in the region of Campania. Three sheets of sediment have been found on top of the lava that lies below the city and, mixed in with the sediment, archaeologists have found bits of bone, pottery shards.
Carbon dating has placed the oldest of these layers from the 8th–6th centuries BC, the other two strata are separated either by well-developed soil layers or Roman pavement, and were laid in the 4th century BC and 2nd century BC. It is theorized that the layers of the sediment were created by large landslides. The town was founded around the 7th-6th century BC by the Osci or Oscans and it had already been used as a safe port by Greek and Phoenician sailors. According to Strabo, Pompeii was captured by the Etruscans, and in recent excavations have shown the presence of Etruscan inscriptions. Pompeii was captured for the first time by the Greek colony of Cumae, allied with Syracuse, in the 5th century BC, the Samnites conquered it, the new rulers imposed their architecture and enlarged the town
The Boeotian helmet was a type of helmet that was used in Classical Antiquity and the Hellenistic period, it possibly originated in the Greek region of Boeotia. The Boeotian helmet was a helmet, allowing good peripheral vision. It had a domed skull surrounded by a wide, down-sloping brim, a long falling plume was sometimes attached to this type of helmet. The need for unimpeded vision and good hearing was particularly acute for cavalrymen and it was modelled on the shape of a folded-down Boeotian variant of the petasos, a type of Greek sun hat, usually made of felt. This type of helmet was beaten from a sheet of bronze using a helmet-shaped former, one of which. An excellently preserved example of type of helmet, now in the Ashmolean Museum, was recovered from the Tigris River in Iraq. It may have belonged to one of Alexander the Greats cavalrymen, in Late Hellenistic times the Boeotian helmet evolved into a type with a taller, more conical skull and often a reduced brim. The Athenian military expert and author Xenophon particularly recommended the Boeotian helmet for cavalry, for this not only gives the greatest protection to all the parts above the cuirass, but allows free vision.
This piece of advice was taken up by Alexander the Great, both the Alexander sarcophagus and Alexander mosaic show cavalrymen of the Ancient Macedonian army wearing Boeotian helmets. As a specialised cavalry helmet its use was not as widespread as some other ancient helmets, the helmet was used by Roman citizen cavalry in the Republican period. On the Altar of Domitius Ahenobarbus, Gnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus was consul in 122 BC, the term Boeotian helmet, however, is an exception, it was employed by Xenophon and is therefore of contemporary usage. Anderson, J. K, Ancient Greek Horsemanship, marathon 490 BC, The First Persian Invasion Of Greece