This portal is dedicated to the knowledge of ancient warfare in ancient times, focusing on the early antiquity up to the fall of the Western Roman Empire, roughly 3500 years of warfare. With the help of the best web sources, ancient authors, archaeological evidences, recreations, illustrations, maps, animations, and screenshots from the highly praized Total War video game serie, choosed by history channel (Sega(r) - Creative assembly(r))

Ancient-battles peeks into the ancient "sea peoples" or the achaeans and minoans from the bronze age and homeric times, but also the Mauryan empire and T'sin armies, the steppe peoples, the Celts, as the early, or at the opposite, very late romans, like the western "barbarized" ones, or the Byzantine, "Hellenized" romans. What we know apart the famous "triplex acies" of pre-marian times, triarii, principes, hastati, equites, and velites? Before this was the very early roman army composed of aristocratic cavalry or Celeres, derived from the Etruscan nobility, and a heavy phalanx composed mainly on spearmen by classes, and a reformed army by Dictator and general Marcus Furius Camilius, with six Censes classes, with rorarii, leves and accensii...

Agris helmetAmfreville-sous-les-Monts helmet - Santons Gauls
Two splendid examples of cross-culture in the IVth Century BC, two ceremonial Gallic helmets of the era, widely decorated in Greek and Celtic patterns.

And what we know about the greek classic armies at this time, with hoplites and meprised psiloi and hippiko, and their opponents, the persians, and beyond the sparabara, takabara, kardaka and other troops ? -The greek-city states age became, with the Macedonian rise, the Hellenistic era, which created terms like "phalangitai, hypaspistai, chalkaspidai, argyraspidai, Leucaspidai, akontistai, peltastai, thureophoroi, toxotai, sphendonetai, thorakitai, hetairoi, prodromoi" were known and became a model for all combined army from the Herakles columns to the Indus river... A true encyclopedia of ancient warfare.


November 2018: The late Hellenistic infantry

Thorakitai During the Pelopponesian wars a kind of light infantry, usually mercenaries from the north, either Thrace or Illyria bring their skills in warfare with a small shield called the Pelte. After two centuries of warfare and the Hellenistic period which opened after the death of Alexander the Great, the peltast was recruited on a far larger basis and was given a larger, sturdied shield called the Thureos. Oblong, shaped like a funerary door, made all in wood, it offered about the same protection as the Cetlic shields against all kind of projectiles while the carrier became heavier, although still called a peltast. Whereas they wear greaves, sword, better javelins or a dory of one-handed spear, a new type of infantry was born, the Thuerophoroi, which became widespread over Hellenistic armies of the time alongside the cumbersome phalanx and replacing advantageously the Hoplite. However around 140 BC the Roman republic hs conqueres large parts of the Mediterranean and definitively was on the path of global domination. Under influence of the Roman legionaries, the Thureophoroi became heavy, armoured hence the term "thorakitai". The Thorakitai has been in some ways an "imitation legionnaire", but keeping Hellentic weaponry, equipment and tactics. Chainmail was not universal as scale armor, composite leather or linothorax were also largely used.

Previous entries

Iberian warfare Illyrian warriors Germanic spearmen Carthaginian Hoplite Corsico-Sardinians Thracian Peltast Caetrati Ensiferi Hippakontistai Hastati Gaesatae Cretan Archer Thorakitai Soldurii Iphikrates Kardaka The thureophoroi