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Table of contents

Each chariot carried two young men with excellent reflexes: the charioteer drove the horses while the chariot warrior shot arrow after arrow against the relatively stationary enemy formations, the chariots keeping just outside the range of the oppos- ing infantry's bowmen. Essentially, the chariot became militarily signifi- cant when it was combined with another intricate artifact, the composite bow, which also had been known for a long time but had until then been a - Drews, The Coming of the Greeks: Indo-European Conquests in the Aegean and the Near East Princeton, , especially ; see also Cassin, "Char de guerre," ; Littauer and Crouwel, Wheeled Vehieles, ; and Moorey, "Emergence,' 1 Warfare in Mari and Early Israel, Early in the seventeenth century it must have occurred to someone who perhaps had himself enjoyed using his chariot and composite bow for hunting exploits that several score of chariots, each manned by an expert driver and a "hunter" armed with a composite bow, would be able to overcome a conventional army of infantrymen.

The earliest chariot warfare seems to have occurred in Asia Minor. Troy VI may have been established soon after 1 B. As another pioneer of the new warfare, Hattusilis I not only made himself Great King of all Hatti — a remarkable accomplishment — but also raided as far as Aleppo and Alalakh. By chariot warriors were in control at Mycenae and elsewhere in Greece, and not long thereafter charioteers took over northwestern India.

Chariotries: Numbers and Costs Chariot forces in the middle of the seventeenth century were relatively small and possibly numbered no more than a hundred vehicles. As chariotries proliferated, the target of a chariot archer was increasingly the horses and crewmen of the opposing chariotry, and it became impor- tant for a king to have more chariots than his opponent had. Thutmose Ill's account of his victory at the Battle of Megiddo shows that by the middle of 5 In Coming of the Greeks, —5, I presented evidence for the use of war chariots by Hattusilis I and by the "Great Hyksos" rulers of Egypt in the second half of the seventeenth century, but overlooked two other very early instances of its use.

Second, it now seems probable Us I argue in "Myths of Midas" that the Truad was the first area to be taken uver by chariot warriors soon after B. An epic text, "The Siege of lirshu," mentions forces of thirty an J eighty chariots in the campaign of Hattusilis I against lirshu: in the wars between Hattusilis and Yanm-lim of Aleppo two hundred chariot fighters implying a hundred chariots are mentioned.

At pp. At the beginning of the next century the Great Kingdom of Mit- anni seems to have had at its disposal a chariotry numbering several thou- sand, since the Nuzi tablets indicate that one of the minor vassals of the Great King of Mitanni could all by himself have supplied his lord with over three hundred chariots.

At Kadesh, the Hittite king is said to have deployed thirty-five hundred chariots, twenty-five hundred of these being his own and one thousand being supplied by vassals. This, at least, seems to have been the situation at Pylos. Although the excavators at Pylos did not turn up "chariot tablets" such as those found at Knossos, they did recover approximately thirty "wheel tablets" detailing the disposition of at least two hundred pairs of wheels.

Another text mentions the purchase of wood for axles. Since the "mayor" of Nuzi wjs an underling of the king of Ar- rapaha, who in turn was the vassal of the Great King of Mitanni, we may suppose that the Nuzi forces were a very small fraction of the total that the Great King could muster. The Ahhiyawa Problem Reconsidered. Beal, Organization, , accepts the figures as reasonable for the Hirrire army at full strength.

Amenhotep II, who admittedly was very fond of horses, brought back chariots from one Asiatic campaign and from another. Astour, "New Evidence," , and B. Cutler and j. A tablet analyzed by Helrzer, Internal Organization, 1 94, lists teams of chariot horses, and Heltzer concludes thar "at least pairs of horses were counted originally in this text. The Knossos archive gives us our most detailed information about num- bers of chariots in a Late Bronze Age kingdom. Here the chanotry may have numbered as many as a thousand. The relevant tablets at Knossos are all from no more than eight scribal hands, and these scribes seem to have "specialized" in keeping a full and meticulous record of the chariots avail- able to the palace.

B That all the relevant tablets have survived, however, is not very likely, and on some surviving but damaged tablets the numerical notations on the right-hand side are illegible. The figures we have are therefore only a minimum for the chariot strength of the Knossos palace. Here, arranged in multiples of four, 16 were approximately chariot boxes "CAPS ideogram , and at least as many pairs of wheels apparently any set of wheels was immediately adapt- able to any chariot box. Other information on the Knossos tablets, however, suggests that the number of chariots that could take the field may have been far lower than the number "on paper.

Olivier, Les scribes de Cnossos Rome, , identified the sctibes and their places of wotk. Michel Lejeune, "Chats et toues a Cnossos: Sttuctute d'un inventaite," Minos 9 : , used Oiiviet's conclusions as a point of departute fot a thorough analysis of how the scribal buteaucxacy wotked. Lejeune desctibed the tesponsibilities of thtee offices "Buteaux I. II, III" in the mattet of chariots. Why a palace would have kept such student exetcises in an archive, while pteservmg none of the chatiot tecotds kept by professional sctibes, is difficult to imagine.

S Lejeune, "Civilisation," Killen et al.. The pattern is not very encouraging: One charioteer has horses but no vehicle, another has a vehicle but only one horse, and still another has both horses and a vehicle but no defensive armor. In fact, only six of the twenty-eight charioteers that is, 21 percent had all of the equipment necessary to take the field. But comparison with records elsewhere suggests that the figures for the chariotry at Knossos are real, for they are no worse than those for Alalakli and Nuzi and somewhat better than those for Assur in Neo- Assyrian times.

A tablet itemizing the chariot and single horse of a particular charioteer would in that case indicate only that the charioteer received a chariot and one horse from the palace, and we would presume that he had another horse of his own. If indeed a Great King could count on only some 20 percent of his chariotry to be battle-ready, then we must suppose that when Muwatallis put twenty-five hundred of his own chariots into the field at Kadesh the "paper strength" of his chariotry was over ten thousand.

Whatever discrepancy there may have been between the size of a chario- try on paper and that of one in the field, it must be observed that even the largest Late Bronze Age chariotry was small, relative to the size of the population it had to defend. Although a thousand chariots at Knotsos might initially seem an impressive number, there must have been well over one hundred thousand Cretans whose security depended on them.

Evans estimated that Knossos itself had one hundted thousand people. It is evident that thete was a population explosion in Ctete at this time. Solomon is said 1 Kings That was a considerable outlay, since it was also said 2 Samuel The Papyrus Anastasi ridicules the young Egyptian who mortgages his grandfather's property to buy a chariot pole for three deben, and a chariot for five. Composite bows were also notoriously expensive.

Such a bow was a very effective weapon, having double or triple the range of a self bow, but its manufacture was costly and difficult the layering and lamination of wood, horn, and sinew was done at long intervals, and a properly aged bow would leave a bowyer's shop five or ten years after he had brought in the raw materials from which it was made. As Yadin pointed out, the development of the mail corslet resulted from the use of chariots in battle.

In the Mahabharata both crewmen regularly wear a corslet. So Uttara, for example, clowning for the benefit of his sister and her friends, "put on his coat of mail upside down, and the wide-eyed maidens giggled when they saw him. Uttara himself tied the costly armor on Brhannada. Himself wearing a superb coat of mail which shone like the sun, and raising his lion standard, he ordered the other to handle his chariot.

For a comprehensive presentation on the l. Buchholz and j. The translation comes from j. The "chariot tablets" from Knossos itemize the distribu- tion of a pair of knee-length corslets to each chariot crew. Copper scales from corslets were found there in great quantity, and the Nuzi tablets make frequent reference to corslets. Its basis was a leather usually goatskin tunic, partially sleeved and reaching down to the knees or to midcalf. Approx- imately five hundred large copper scales were sewn to the torso and skirt of the sariam, and another several hundred small scales were sewn to the arms.

The head and neck of the chariot crewman was protected by a gurpisu, a leather helmet covered with long strips of bronze or copper since the gurpisu extended to the collar, the crewman was entirely covered except for the face, the lower arms, and the lower legs. The several Nuzi corslets that can be reconstructed are estimated to have weighed between thirty-seven and fifty-eight pounds. Apart from the expense of purchasing all these items, and of hiring all the necessary specialists [charioteers, chariot warriors, trainers, grooms, veter- inarians, carpenters , there was the matter of food: Stuart Piggott has estimated that eight to ten acres of good grain-land would have been re- l " Catling, "Panzer," ff.

M The fullest discussion of the Nuzi evidence is in Kendall. Warfare, Catling, "Panzer," Buchholz and V. Karageorghis, Prehistoric Greece and Cyprus London, , no. Given the extraordinary expense of maintaining a chariotry, it is no surprise to find that the chariotry was a palace's chief concern. Keeping track of the chariots and charioteers required a small bureaucracy of clerks and quartermasters. This is shown most clearly at Knossos, but in Egypt too thereare references to the "scribe of the stable," "scribe of horses," and "scribe of the chariotry.

S Everywhere the charioteers have names, while infantrymen are merely numbered. In the Greek world, the palace fur- nished everything: each tablet in the Knossos Sc series was devoted to one charioteer, being a record of the vehicle, team, harness, and corslet or corslets allocated to him. In Egypt and the Levant, the charioteer may have "owned" his own chariot, with the palace supplying arms, armor, and horses. The king and the men in his chariot corps were closely interdependent, the king supplying much or all of the expensive equipment that the chariot crews needed and the chariot crews providing for the king's and the kingdom's security.

Often the men of the chariotry were given land by the king, to be held in fief. At Ugarit land allotments were made to the maryannu, and apparently a son inherited both the allotment and his father's military obligation. Lejeune, "Chars et roues," , identifies in the Knossos palace thtee separate "bureaus" whose scribes specialized in the chariot inventories and are not known from their distinctive hands to have inscribed anything other than "chariot tablets. The strictly military aspects of Bronze Age chariotry have been addressed piecemeal, and the general character of chariot warfare remains unexplored.

This chapter will conclude that before the Catastrophe char- iots were in all kingdoms used as mobile firing platforms for archers armed with composite bows, but that conclusion is quite unorthodox. Mycenaean chariots, first of all, are often thought of as having had little utility of any kind on the battlefield.

This view is popular especially among archaeologists. Their indifference to the chariot is not entirely surprising: while hundreds of Late Helladic swords and spearheads have been found, and even a number of boar's tusk helmets, no Mycenaean chariot has yet been brought to light, nor are the chances very good that future excavations will produce one. Most archaeological studies of Mycenaean warfare have therefore readily accepted Homer's assurance that the Mycenaeans fought on foot and have assumed that whatever was done with the chariots was of little or no consequence.

Detienne, "Remarques sur le char en Grece," in Vernant Prohlemes de la guerre, Kendall, Warfare, "The local charioteers seem also to have been a privileged lot. A very great many lived in or around the palace, and their duties often consisted of no more than standing guard as watchmen at the palace portals. When I. It was therefore possible to believe that although chariots may have been important in LH I and II, by the end of 1I1B they were as inconsequential as Homer makes them.

In recent scholarship, it is noteworthy that in the exquisitely detailed Archaeologia Homerica series the two volumes devoted to Krtegsweseti do not even include a chapter on the chariot, and Josef Wicsner's fahren und Retten treats the chariot as primarily a prestige vehicle. A few historians have tried to fill the gap left by our archaeological and documentary evidence, but with varying results. Occasionally the Mycenaean chariot is understood to have been used to propel a thrusting spear. The possibility that the Mycenaean chariot was an archer's mobile platform has not, so far as 1 know, been seriously considered.

Most scholars who have expressed themselves on the role of the Hittite chariotry have stated that in Hatti the offensive weapon of a chariot warrior was the lance — the thrusting spear — and not the bow. The Hittite chariots, that is, like medieval knights at a joust, made a furious rush at the opponent's vehicles, the chariot warrior attempting to thrust a lance through one of the enemy crewmen.

Several scholars have in fact suggested that the Hittites came up short in the Battle of Kadesh because their chariot lancers were held at a distance by Ramesses' chariot archers. Stubbings, "Arms and Armour," in Wace and Stubbings, eds. The interpreration of Stillman and Tallis, Annies, 65, is slightly different: "Against enemy chariotry, the Hittite chariotry would charge into close combat. The Hittites would attempt to get close to their opponents to discharge their spears or thrust with them. Buchholz, Agaische Bronzezeit, , describes the Hirnte chariot war- riors as lancers and then condemns this "aussichtslosc Taktik.

Schulman's view can be immediately rejected. It arose from two consid- erations, both of them true: first, in Homeric battles the chariot functions only as a battle taxi; 4 " and second, Egyptian evidence shows the chariot warrior as an archer. Instead of seeing the Homeric and the Egyptian evidence as incomparable, and choosing between them, Schulman merged them, producing the taxied archers. But the practice he describes has no support whatever in either literary or archaeological evidence, is unim- aginable in practice, and is congruent only with Schulman's own recent argument that chariotry was too inefficient ever to have been of any mili- tary importance.

Here again we may be categorical: the notion that either Hittite or Mycenaean chariot warriors could have relied upon the lance as their primary offensive weapon is for practical reasons out of the question. Like the chariots of Mycenaean Greece, Nuzi, and Assyria, the Hittite chariot certainly carried a lance. This weapon would have been essential against enemy foot soldiers 48 Schulman, "Chariots, Chariotry, and the Hyksos. In "Chariots, Chariotry, and the Hyksos," Schulman arguesthat "outside of certain situations where it did have a limited tactical value," the chariot was of little significance in ancient warfare.

The article ignores the fact that from rhe beginning of antiquity to the end the art of warfare went through radical evolutionary and revolunonary changes. In making rhe argumenr abour the Late Bronze Age, the arricle relies upon classical sources, such as Arnan's Tactica, which claimed that chariots were of little pracrical value on the battlefield; Schulman's use of such late sources is based on his surprising assumption that "little of the conditions, practice, and weaponry of war had changed between the time of the Hyksos and that of Arrian" p.

Schulman argues rhat if chariots had little military value ro rhe Greeks and Romans, rhey would have been usr as ineffecrive in rhe Lare Bronze Age, since Lare Bronze Age armies were "as skilled in warfare as were irs practirioners in Classical antiquity" p. While looking to classical authors for an assessmenr of charior warfare, Schulman found Late Bronze Age sources suspect: "Although it is true that the Kadesh texts specify that Hittite chariors, each bearing rhree men surprised rhe Egyptian army, we can hardly accept such a figure as orher rhan a gross exaggeration" p- ' That a chariot warrior's offensive assignment was to thrust a spear laterally, as two chariots passed, is also unimaginable.

Finally, we must confront the thesis that in Late Helladic Greece the chariot's military use was confined to transporting infantryman to and from a battle. Furthermore, as Littauer and Crouwel have pointed out, 54 several recently discovered sherds of LH I11C pottery do portray chariots carrying a driver and an infantryman. It is possible, therefore, that in the middle of the twelfth century B. But how chariots were used after the Catastrophe and how they were used before must be regarded as two very different questions. During the century and a half prior to the Catastrophe life in the palace-states seems to have been so secure that Catling described the period as the pax Mycenaicar s Since it is unlikely that in this period military chariots were often put to the test, we may be dealing more with hypothetical than with actual use.

Wiesner, Littauer, and Crouwel supposed that chariots functioned as hattle taxis throughout rhe LH period. Anderson argued onty that they wete so used in the Dark Age, after the great period of chariot warfare had ended. For the Homeric picture is misleading, as Homer himself was the first to admit. When Nestor gives his advice that the chariots be drawn up in a line, so that they might charge against the Trojans, each warrior thrusting with his spear against the enemy, the old man justifies his advice with the reminis- cence Iliad 4. We have already seen that men of earlier times did not— and could not have done— battle in the way Nestor here prescribes, but the reminis- cence is nevertheless important because it reveals Homer's own concession that his Achaeans at Troy were not using their chariots in the way that chariots were supposed to be used.

In the days when men really did depend on chariots. Homer is here conceding, they did not use them merely for transport to and from the battlefield. If we may translate this into our terms perhaps we may propose, along the lines suggested by J. Anderson, that the way in which the Greeks of the II1C period used their chariots was not how the chariot was used, or was meant to be used, in the 1IIB period — the generations before the Catastrophe.

The claim that Homer did not know how Mycenaean chariots were meant to be used in battle may be regarded by some as a rash calumny and needs some defense. Although Homer's Achaeans have most often been identified with the occupants of the Mycenaean palaces, there is good reason to believe — as 1 have argued elsewhere — that the saga originated in the less civilized, more bellicose, and illiterate pans of Achaea especially the mountainous coast of Thessaly and Phthiotis ; and thi-t the Achaeans or "Argives" who sacked Troy and whose fathers had sacked Thebes spoke North Greek rather than the South Greek of the Linear B tablets.

Evidence also continues to mount that before the Trojan saga circulated among Ionic-speakers it was preserved in the Aeolic dialect of their northern neighbors. See now H. Singor, "Nine against Troy," Mnemosyne 44 : C : They were, that is to say, infantrymen of the new type — fleet of foot, skilled with the javelin or throwing spear, and also carrying long swords — who spelled the doom of the great chariot forces of the Late Bronze Age. Integral to the thesis of this book is the tenet that in Greece chariot warfare virtually disappeared during the Catastro- phe and that throughout the Dark Age it was nothing but a vague memory.

That Homer knew very little about chariot warfare is precisely, it seems to me, what one should expect of a bard who stands at the end of a tradition that originated in a society of infantrymen. The thesis that during the palace period Mycenaean chariots served primarily as battle taxis is untenable not because we have evidence to the contrary we do not but because it makes no historical sense. The enor- mously expensive chariot and chariot horses, as Greenhalgh observed, would hardly have been risked by the palace in such a frivolous way, when the wounding of a horse "could easily put the whole apparatus out of action.

It is not reason- able to suppose that the rulers did all this merely to ensure that several hundred of their infantrymen could ride in comfort or dignity to the battle- field. Chariots as status symbols or as convenient means of transportation would have been a private concern: men with ample wealth may have chosen to spend some of it in purchasing a chariot and team and in raising the grain to keep the horses healthy.

But a palace would hardly have-been so preoccupied with its chariotry if the chariots were nothing more than the personal luxuries of a few hundred foot soldiers. The rulers must have believed that the chariotry they were so diligently maintaining would in a crisis provide the regime and its subjects with protection and security. They must have believed, that is, that the kind of chariot warfare that had once been effective was still effective. In the event, of course, they were wrong.

But if the pax Mycenaica provided few opportunities for putting the old warfare into practice, the rulers of the Mycenaean palaces can hardly be blamed for imagining that the next war would be fought along the same lines as the last one. Here I must anticipate the conclusion of chapter 1 1. That chapter will show that in the centuries prior to the Catastrophe the armies of eastern Mediter- ranean kings included no offensive infantry formations: the only offen- sive foot soldiers in these armies were skirmishers or "runners" who fought in support of the chariot squadron to which they were attached.

Our picture of heavily armed infantry units as the bulwark of the Myce- naean palace-states comes not from the archaeological evidence and cer- tainly not from the Linear B tablets but from the Iliad, and for the period when the Pylos and Knossos palaces were still standing it is demonstrably wrong.

How, then, were war chariots used in the Late Bronze Age kingdoms of the eastern Mediterranean? The answer will be no surprise: as mobile platforms for archers. That is also how the war chariot was used elsewhere. Sanskrit scholars have known all along that the Aryan chariot warriors of India were bowmen, and recently it has become clear that in China too the war chariot carried an archer. The fact that the bow was the weapon of the chariot warriors who opposed Thutmose III at Megiddo is clear from that king's account, on. It was these with which they had come from afar to fight against my majesty, and now they were bringing them as tribute to my majesty.

Ugantic texts make frequent mention of bows and arrows, and it will be recalled that the Tale of Aqhat revolved about an extraordinary composite bow. One Ugari- tic tablet reports that two chariots brought in for repairs "are without quivers," an obvious implication, as Beal notes, "that other chariots did have quivers. A ninth-century orthostat from the Neo-Hittite palace at Carchemish shows a chariot archer in the act of shooting, while his chariot rolls over an enemy already brought down by an arrow.

These chariots were outfitted with a bow case and occasionally a quiver attached to the chariot box at a diagonal, the mouth being at a level with the archer's right hand. An Egyptian papyrus notes the departure of a chariot for Syria, the chariot having a quiver stocked with eighty arrows. II boasted of the rapidity, range, and accuracy of his shooting, claiming that from a speeding chariot he had hit four targets, set thirty-four feet apart. Internal Organization , Schulman, "Chariots, Chariotry, and the Hyksos," n.

For the full inscription, see Breasted, AR. As noted above, the belief that the lance was the standard weapon of the Hittite chariot warrior derives from Ramesses the Great's reliefs of the Battle of Kadesh. In each of the other Hittite chariots is a crew of three. One of the three holds the reins, a second man regularly carries a shield, and the third man sometimes holds a lance. The Egyptian sculptor, however, nowhere depicts the Hittite chariots in action they are either heading toward or retreating from the battlefield.

And as Richard Beal points out, as often as not the third man in a Hittite chariot is shown without a weapon of any kind. Since in the inscription Ramesses does mention the archers of the Hittite chariot corps, 7 ' Beal argues that the reliefs are "clearly a misrepresentation.

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In battle scenes the pharaoh's artists were careful never to depict an Egyptian corpse or indeed an Egyptian in danger. As portrayed in Egyptian art, only Egyptian troops take the offensive, the obligation of the artist being to propagate the myth of the pharaoh's invin- cibility. The latter is a caption for a scene of a group of prisoners: "List of those countries which his maiesty slew, while alone by himself: corpses, horses, and chariots, bows, swords, all the weapons of warfare.

Students of ancient weaponry have also suspected that the Egyptian artists distorted their opponents' weaponry. Stillinan and Tallis, Armies, 57, note that in the New Kingdom "in marry battle scenes only enemies are ever shown dead or wounded Mid sometimes inianlioured anil without weapons. When Seti campaigned against the Hittites, he evidently was opposed by Hittite chariot archers, for the Karnak reliefs that celebrate his victory see plate 1 depict Hittite chariots equipped with bow cases, and in each chariot is a Hittite warrior with a quiver on his back and a bow in his hand.

In all the Near Eastern kingdoms of the Late Bronze Age, the chariot served as an archer's mobile firing platform. From Mycenaean Greece, unfortunately, we have no pictorial represen- tations of a chariot battle. For that reason, and perhaps because no com- posite bow has ever been found in a Mycenaean tomb, Aegean archaeolo- gists have traditionally and stubbornly insisted that the bow had no military importance in the Late Helladic period. Before the Linear B tablets were read, and when Hornet was still taken as a reliable guide to things Mycenaean, it was understandable that scholars imagined the Mycenaeans as contemptuous of the bow.

Lorimer summed up and lent her great authority to the consensus: the composite bow was strictly Oriental and Minoan, and although the Mycenaeans may now and then have seen such a weapon "there is no indication that they learned how to use it. On similar grounds she dismissed the importance of the bow in the Odyssey: the centraliry of Odysseus's great composite bow in the story of his return was "natural when we consider the strong Cretan tinge of much of the poem.

In their discussions of Mycenaean warfare most archaeological surveys either dismiss the bow in a few sentences or omit it altogether. Not to multiply examples, 1 cite only Jan Bouzek, The Aegean. Anatolia, and F. Goteborgand Prague, In the very last paragraph of his fifry-page survey of Late Helladic armor and weapons, and after a meticulous analysis of swords, spears, daggers, knives, and axes of the period, Bouzek hnaNy reaches fp.

In any case the bow only played a marginal part in warfare during the period in question. There is other evidence that the bow was the primary weapon of Mycenaean chariot warriors. Knee-length corslets were evidently provided for chariot crews, and these must have been meant for protection against enemy missiles in a contest of thrusting spears or ra- piers the long corslets would have offered little protection and would have greatly impeded the wearer's movement.

Alongside the "chariot tablets" found at Knossos were tablets recording large lots of arrows: 60 10 in one batch and in another, enough for each of two hundred chariot archers to receive forty. Nearby were found stores of bronze arrowheads, which were meant for distribution to Mycenaean rather than as Evans thought Minoan warriors. Tablets also refer to bow making and to bowyers to-ko-so- wo-ko, which "ha un perfetto comspondente in greco in xoi;of ooyoi.

Whereas no metal arrowheads have been found in EH or MH contexts, bronze arrowheads of various kinds appear suddenly with the Shaft Graves and continue through the LH B period; then they vanish again, with only a handful attested for the whole of the Dark Age. That Homer had some very wrong ideas about how a composite bow was made cf. In a detailed philological study Denys Page concluded that Homer's lim- ited repertory of formulas for bows and arrows is "the disintegrating relic of a much wider and stricter system," and that "the evidence of formular usage is sufficient to carry the bow and arrows back to a remote past.

M Snodgrass, Arms and Armour, Much more can be learned from India. The hymns of the Rig Veda originated in the late centuries of the second millennium, when in India too chariots dominated the battlefield; and here, unlike in Greece, oral tradition kept the world of the chariot warrior alive far into the first millennium, when finally the hymns were written down. One hymn, recited over the chariot crew just before they went into battle, begins by invoking divine blessing upon the warrior's armor: 8 -' "His face is like a thundercloud, when the armoured warrior goes into the lap of battles.

Conquer with an unwounded body; let the power of armour keep you safe. The bow ruins the enemy's pleasure; with the bow let us conquer all the corners of rhe world. She comes all the way up to your ear like a woman who wishes to say something, embracing her dear friend; humming like a woman, the bowstring stretched tight on the bow carries you safely across in the battle.

These two who go forward like a woman going to an encounter hold the arrow in their lap as a mother holds a son. Let the two bow-tips, working together, pierce our enemies and scatter our foes. In the still later Mahabharata, chariot archers are again conspicuous. As the Tngarta chariots rolled against the Matsyas, "the sun disappeared behind arrows shot back and forth, but the compact sky was lit up as though by fireflies.

The gold-backed bows of the archers, world famous heroes who shot right-handed and left, got tangled when they fell. The two great-spirited and powerful kings struck out at each other, roaring like two bulls in a cowpen. The chariot fighters circled each other on their chariots, loosing arrows as nimbly as clouds let go their water streams.

In summary, whatever evidence we have for chariots in battle indicates that they were used as mobile platforms for archers. This seems to have been ttue from the beginning of chariot warfare in the seventeenth century until the Catastrophe. Homer did not know how war chariots were used in the LH IIIB period, but that is not surprising since neither did he know anything of the palace regimes that served and were served by the chario- tries.

In the Near East chariots continued to carry archers, armed with composite bows, down to the eighth century, although by that time char- iots played only an ancillary role in battle. We have only a little information about the organization of chariotries. The smallest tactical unit seems to have been a group often chariots when- ever chariots are requested, they are requested in multiples of ten. Schul- man assembled evidence that in Egypt, at least, five of these units — or fifty vehicles — normally made up a squadron. The autobiography of Meryptah describes that worthy's service in squadrons named "the Phoenix" and "Manifest injustice" among Meryptah's positions were "standard-bearer of the chariot warriors" and "first stablemaster".

Lejeune pointed out that the Linear B scribes consistently except on one tablet noted the color of the chariot box — vermillion, purple, red — and suggested that the color was an "element de signalement. Al- though we have no evidence on the matter, we must suppose that all the archers of a given squadron shot their arrows from the same side of the box and that a squadron itself could therefore be described as belonging " to the right" ot "to the left.

RT Leieune, "Chars et roues," H " Mababbarata 4 47 37, 10 trans. Powell's recon- struction, at the outset of a battle chariots provide a thin screen for an infantry formation, the chariots moving laterally across the front of their own infantry and the chariot archers shooting — at a right angle — their arrows against the enemy's infantrymen. The chariots then remove them- selves while the infantries engage, and after the battle is won the chariots return to pursue the enemy fugitives. At that point the chariots would be committed, in order to tip the scales of the battle.

Leaving the infantries out of the picture, at least temporarily, we must apparently imagine that opposing chariot forces would hurtle toward each other chariot warriors are regularly shown shooting over the heads of their horses , the squadrons maintaining an assigned order and the archers 90 Powell, "Some Implications or Chariotry," in 1.

Foster and L Adcock. Essays in Honour of Sir Cyril Fox London, , It is clear that in the opening stages of the battle exchanges of arrows were made from chariots moving up and down their own fronts, but probably at a range which did not seriously endanger the horses. This was the phase for display and intimidation, recogniz- able again in the Iliad, and in Irish epic. Later in die battle, if the opposing side was routed, chariots were again employed for pursuit. To conceive of the likelihood of massed chariots charging an enemy formation, whether also in chariots or on foot, is to ignore practical considerations, Wounds easily to be inflicted on horses would ensure chaos, and certainly allow of no recovery.

As was said earlier, the chariot in its Egyptian and Asiatic role provided a mobile vantage point for archery.

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In the Egyptian reliefs of chariots in action there is no head-on clash, the scene is always that of pursuit, and Egyptian arrows pierce the enemy and his horses from behind. Chariots were never so expendable that one violent collision could have been allowed to risk abandonment on the field. Powell's description assumes that Late Bronze Age battles were essentially infantry en- counters 1 shall try to show in chapter 1 1 that they were not; and ignores the fact that in these battles chariots and horses were indeed lost, by the hundreds.

What contribution could have been made by chariots that moved "up and down their own fronts, but probably at a range which did not seriously endanger the horses," is difficult to imagine since, in Powell's view, the two infantries were even farther apart than the two promenading chariotries. It is tnie that in Egyptian art "there is no head-on clash, the scene is always of pursuit," but that is very likely because in Egyptian ideology enemies regularly flee and Egyptians pursue.

The Iliad, as indicated above, cannot be used as a guide to the chariot tactics used before the Catastrophe. It would not be used m battle until the critical moment had arrived; then its task was to launch a drive which would induce a breaking of ranks in the opposing infantry lines.

Once the tide of a battle had been turned the chariotry might then also harry and hunt down the dispersed enemy. The archers must have shot ever more rapidly and vigorously as the opposing forces closed the distance between them. Of course many horses were killed or wounded: the whole point of the battle as Egyptian reliefs show clearly enough was to bring down as many of the opponent's chariots as possible.

The typical chariot force was probably deployed in a formation broader than it was deep. On a flat plain, only the archers in a front rank of chariots could have had an uninterrupted view of their opponents. And a charioteer driving his horses at the gallop could not have followed too closely upon a chariot in front of him, since he would need to be able to maneuver around any sudden casualty, lest his own team should pile onto a comrade's immo- bilized vehicle. Perhaps a host of chariots was typically deployed in three or four ranks, ranged behind one another at intervals of twenty or thirty meters, but it is not impossible that on occasion all the chariots were deployed in a single rank.

Since as we shall see in the following section Thutmose himself rode in the center of the frontline at Megiddo, we must infer that front-line chariots were not conspicuously at risk, and that in turn suggests that the chariot formation was wide and shallow.

Chariot - WikiMili, The Free Encyclopedia

It probably was important to extend one's line far enough that it could not be out- flanked by the enemies' vehicles. What happened when the opposing chariot forces charged against each other will be imagined in various ways. Horses, unlike men, cannot be driven to charge directly into their opponents, and so we must imagine that in a battle between two more or less equal chariotries the two lines slowed as they closed and then somehow slipped around or through each other when a large chariotry met a small one, on the other hand, the small force would perhaps either have turned tail long before closing or would have been entirely enveloped, brought to a standstill, and thus destroyed.

Per- haps a chariot force may have divided as it approached the enemy, the vehicles on the right pulling farther to the right in order to flank their opponents, while the chariots on the left all carrying, perhaps, left-handed archers pulled to the left. Contrarily, the objective may have been to drive wedges into the enemy line, a compact squadron splitting apart the en- emy's unbroken line, and the successive ranks funneling into and stretch- ing the gap. It is barely conceivable that all along the line the formation was loose enough that the two opposing lines could completely intermesh and thus pass through each other, but in that case the casualties would have been enormous.

After the surviving teams had made their way past each other, the ar- chers may have faced the rear of their vehicles and fired once or twice at their opponents as they receded. Finally, when one of the forces had been heavily depleted or thrown into disorder, the survivors would have made no more return charges but would have tried to escape to a citadel or a guarded position. Thutmose led a great army into the Levant in order to establish his supremacy there and was opposed by a coalition of Canaanite kingdoms under the leadership of the king of Kadesh.

On the ninth day after passing the Delta frontier fortress at Sile, Thutmose's army was at Gaza, miles distant; by the standards of antiquity and the Middle Ages, he had moved very quickly. Thutmose decided, however, to maintain the single column, and to put himself at the head of it: "[Every man] was made aware of his order of march, horse following horse, while [his majesty] was at the head of his army. He decided to pitch a camp, however, and to delay the battle until the following day: "Prepare ye!

The high mobility and short-term settlements characteristic of Corded Ware, that are often associated with horse riding by association with Yamna, may or may not be correct, but there is no need for horses to explain their herding economy or their mobility, and the north-eastern European areas — the one which survived after Bell Beaker expansion — did certainly not rely on horses as an essential part of their economy. NOTE: I cannot think of more supposed similarities right now. If you have more ideas, please share in the comments and I will add them here. Given how much each paper changes what we know about the Palaeolithic, the origin and expansion of the always developing known ancestral components and specific subclades see below is not clear at all.

The ancestry is thus linked to the Caucasus south of the steppe before the emergence of North Pontic western and Don-Volga-Ural eastern communities during the Mesolithic. The real question is: when we have more samples from the steppe and the Caucasus during the Neolithic, how many CHG groups are we going to find? My guess is, most likely not , unless they are mediated by the Khvalynsk-Novodanilovka expansion read more on CHG in the Caucasus.

NOTE 1. Some similarities between groups can be seen depending on the sampled region; e. Baltic groups show more similarities with southern Pontic-Caspian steppe populations, probably due to exogamy. NOTE 2. This kind of fine scale studies is what is going to show more and more differences between Khvalynsk-Yamna and Sredni Stog-Corded Ware as more data pours in.

The evolution of both communities in archaeology and in PCA see below is probably witness to those differences yet to be published. Caucasus J or G or any other upper clade, this is plainly wrong. The role of R1a-M is unknown , but it might be related to any of these migrations, or others plural along northern Eurasia read more on the expansion of R1b-P , on Palaeolithic Q1a2 , and on R1a-M I am inclined to believe in a speculative Mesolithic-Early Neolithic community involving Eurasiatic movements accross North Eurasia, and Indo-Uralic movements in its western part, with the last intense early Uralic-PIE contacts represented by the forming west Mariupol culture and east Don-Volga-Ural cultures, including Samara communities developing side by side.

If we take a look at the evolution of Corded Ware cultures, the expansion of Bell Beakers — dominated over most previous European cultures from west to east Europe — influenced the development of the whole European Bronze Age, up to Mierzanowice and Trzciniec in the east. The only relevant unscathed CWC-derived groups, after the expansion of Sintashta-Potapovka as the Srubna-Andronovo horizon in the Eurasian steppes, were those of the north-eastern European forest zone : between Belarus to the west, Finland to the north, the Urals to the east, and the forest-steppe region to the south.

That is, precisely the region supposed to represent Uralic speakers during the Bronze Age. This inconsistency of steppe ancestry and its relation with Uralic and Balto-Slavic peoples was observed shortly after the publication of the first famous papers by Paul Heggarty, of the Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology read more :. Haak et al. Indo-European languages. What they do not mention is that those same results also include speakers of other languages among those with the highest of all scores for Yamnaya ancestry.

Only these are languages of the Uralic family, not Indo-European at all; and their Yamnaya-ancestry signals are far higher than in many branches of Indo-European in southern Europe. Estonian ranks very high, while speakers of the very closely related Finnish are curiously not shown, and nor are the Saami. Hungarian is relevant less directly since this language arrived only c. Both papers fail to address properly the question of the Uralic languages. And this despite — or because? Their linguistic ancestors also have a good claim to have been involved in the Corded Ware and Yamnaya cultures, and of course the other members of the Uralic family are scattered across European Russia up to the Urals.

For my part, I claimed in my draft that ancestral components were not the only relevant data to take into account , and that Y-DNA haplogroups R1a and R1b appearing separately in CWC and Yamna-Bell Beaker-Afanasevo , together with their calculated timeframes of formation — and therefore likely expansion — did not fit with the archaeological and linguistic description of the spread of Proto-Indo-European and its dialects. More precise inconsistencies were observed after the publication of Olalde et al. Letting aside the many details enumerated you can read a summary in my latest draft , this interesting excerpt is from the conclusion:.

An open access ealier draft version of the paper is offered for download by the author. Simple solutions to complex problems are never the best choice, even when favoured by politicians and the media. Kossinna also offered a simple solution to a complex prehistoric problem, and failed therein. Prehistoric archaeology has been aware of this for a century, and has responded by becoming more differentiated and nuanced, working anthropologically, scientifically and across disciplines cf.

The two aDNA papers in Nature, powerful and promising as they are for our future understanding, also offer rather straightforward messages, heavily pulled by culture-history and the equation of people with culture. This admittedly is due partly to the restrictions of the medium that conveys them and despite the often relevant additional detail given as supplementary information, which is unfortunately not always given full consideration.

While I have no doubt that both papers are essentially right, they do not reflect the complexity of the past. It is here that archaeology and archaeologists contributing to aDNA studies find their role; rather than simply handing over samples and advising on chronology, and instead of letting the geneticists determine the agenda and set the messages, we should teach them about complexity in past human actions and interactions. If accepted, this could be the beginning of a marriage made in heaven, with the blessing smile of Gustaf Kossinna, and no doubt Vere Gordon Childe, were they still alive, in a reconciliation of twentieth- and twenty-first-century approaches.

For us as archaeologists, it could also be the starting point for the next level of a new archaeology. The question was made painfully clear with the publication of Olalde et al. This has been further confirmed in more recent papers, such as Narasimhan et al. However, the discussion is still dominated by political agendas based on prevalent Y-DNA haplogroups in modern countries and ethnic groups.

Open access Origin and spread of Thoroughbred racehorses inferred from complete mitochondrial genome sequences: Phylogenomic and Bayesian coalescent perspectives , by Yoon et al. PLOS One The Thoroughbred horse breed was developed primarily for racing, and has a significant contribution to the qualitative improvement of many other horse breeds. Despite the importance of Thoroughbred racehorses in historical, cultural, and economical viewpoints, there was no temporal and spatial dynamics of them using the mitogenome sequences.

These sequences were analyzed together along with previously published horse mitochondrial genomes from a range of breeds across the globe using a Bayesian coalescent approach as well as Bayesian inference and maximum likelihood methods. The racing horses were revealed to have multiple maternal origins and to be closely related to horses from one Asian, two Middle Eastern, and five European breeds.

Our phylogenomic analyses also supported that there was no apparent correlation between geographic origin or breed and the evolution of global horses. The most recent common ancestor of the Thoroughbreds lived approximately 8,—, years ago, which was significantly younger than the most recent common ancestor of modern horses 0.

Bayesian skyline plot revealed that the population expansion of modern horses, including Thoroughbreds, occurred approximately 5,—11, years ago, which coincide with the start of domestication. This is the first phylogenomic study on the Thoroughbred racehorse in association with its spatio-temporal dynamics. The database and genetic history information of Thoroughbred mitogenomes obtained from the present study provide useful information for future horse improvement projects, as well as for the study of horse genomics, conservation, and in association with its geographical distribution.

We carried out a Bayesian coalescent approach using extended mitochondrial genome sequences from horses in order to further assess the timescale of horse domestication. Here, we first calculated the time of the most recent common ancestor of Thoroughbred horses. Our analysis revealed the age of the most recent common ancestor of the racing horse to be around 8,—, years old.

This estimate is much younger than that of the most recent common ancestor of the global horses, which has been estimated at 0. On the domestication time of modern horses, there have been several publications derived from both archaeological [49—51] and molecular [11—12, 23, 48] evidences. Ludwig et al. Subsequently, on the basis of mitochondrial genome sequences, Lippold et al. Warmuth [48] dated domestication time to 5, years ago based on autosomal genotype data, while Orlando et al. In contrast to the previous hypothesized date of horse domestication, the results of our Bayesian skyline plot BSP analysis depict a rapid expansion of the horse population approximately 5,—11, years ago, which coincides with the start of domestication.

Kim amwkim September 19, After AD the nomadic Avars settled in the Carpathian Basin and founded their empire, which was an important force in Central Europe until the beginning of the 9th century AD. Here, we study the whole mitochondrial genomes of twenty-three 7th century and two 8th century AD individuals from a well-characterised Avar elite group of burials excavated in Hungary. Most of them were buried with high value prestige artefacts and their skulls showed Mongoloid morphological traits.

This Avar elite group shows affinities to several ancient and modern Inner Asian populations. The genetic results verify the historical thesis on the Inner Asian origin of the Avar elite, as not only a military retinue consisting of armed men, but an endogamous group of families migrated. This correlates well with records on historical nomadic societies where maternal lineages were as important as paternal descent. Each haplogroup M7c1b2b, R2, Y1a1 and Z1a1 is represented by one individual. One further haplogroup, M7 probably M7c1b2b , was detected sample AC20 ; however, the poor quality of its sequence data 2.

There is no chronological difference between the female and the male from Grave 30 and 32 AC11 and AC12 , but the two males buried in Grave 28 and 52 AC13 and AC15 are not contemporaries; they lived at least generations apart. The Avar period elite shows the lowest and non-significant genetic distances to ancient Central Asian populations dated to the Late Iron Age Hunnic and to the Medieval period, which is displayed on the ancient MDS plot Fig.

Further mitogenomic data from Inner Asia are needed to specify the ancient genetic connections; however, genomic analyses are also set back by the state of archaeological research, i. The investigated elite group from the Avar period elite also shows low genetic distances and phylogenetic connections to several Central and Inner Asian modern populations. Further genetic connections of the Avars to modern populations living to East and North of Inner Asia Yakuts, Buryats, Tungus probably indicate common source populations. A replacement of the male population with subsequent migrations is obvious from the current distribution of Y-DNA haplogroups in the Carpathian Basin.

Ancient Hungarians are important to understand the evolution, not only of Ugric, but also of Finno-Ugric peoples and their origin , since they show a genetic picture before more recent population expansions, genetic drift, and bottlenecks in eastern Europe. By now it is evident that the migration of Magyar clans from their homeland in the Cis-Urals region from the 4th century AD on happened after the first waves of late and gradual expansion of N1c subclades among Finno-Ugric peoples, but before the bottlenecks seen in modern populations of eastern Europe.

In Ob-Ugric peoples, from the scarce data found in Pimenoff et al. Similarly to Hungarians, the situation of modern Estonians where R1a and N subclades show approximately the same proportion, ca. This is data from recent papers, summed up in Wikipedia :. R1a-Z stands out in FDNA which we have to assume has no geographic preference among modern Hungarians , while R1a-M is prevalent in the north, which probably points to its relationship with at least West Slavic populations.

We already knew that Hungarians show similarities with Srubna and Hunnic peoples , and this paper shows a good reason for the similarities with the Huns. Also, recent population movements in the region before the Avars probably increased the proportion of R1b-L23 and I1 subclades related to Roman and Germanic peoples as well as possibly R1a-Z mainly M, related to the expansion of Slavs. From Understanding 6th-century barbarian social organization and migration through paleogenomics , by Amorim et al. The sample SZ15, of haplogroup R1a1a1b1a3a S , belongs to the Germanic branch Z, which has a completely different history with its integration into the Nordic Bronze Age community.

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  • Nevertheless, Z refers to an upper clade, found also in East Andronovo sites in Narasimhan et al. For more on the analysis of probability of the actual subclade, see here. This result remains to be reproduced with the current technology. It is very likely that they are going to show mainly a mixture of both R1a-Z and R1a-Z93 lineages , with later populations showing a higher proportion of R1a-Z subclades. Whether this mixture happened already during the Corded Ware period, or is the result of later developments, is still unknown.

    What is certain is that Hungarian N1a1a1a-L subclades belong to more recent additions of Siberian haplogroups to the Ugric stock, probably during the Iron Age, just centuries before the Magyar expansion. Why and how exactly social complexity develops through time from small-scale groups to the level of large and complex institutions is an essential social science question.

    It set out to document a segment of the Sintashta-Petrovka population not previously recognized in the archaeological record and learn about how this segment of the population related to the rest of the society. The Sintashta-Petrovka development provides a comparative case study of a pastoral society divided into sedentary and mobile segments. Subsurface testing on the peripheries of three Sintashta-Petrovka communities suggests that a group of mobile herders lived outside the walls of the nucleated villages on a seasonal basis. During the summer, this group moved away from the village to pasture livestock farther off in the valley, and during the winter returned to shelter adjacent to the settlement.

    This finding illuminates the functioning of the year-round settlements as centers of production during the summer so as to provide for herd maintenance and breeding and winter shelter against harsh environmental conditions. The question of why individuals chose in this context to form mutually dependent relationships with other families and thus give up some of their independence can be answered with a combination of two necessities: to remain a community in a newly settled ecological niche and to protect animals from environmental risk and theft.

    Those who were skillful at managing communal construction of walled villages and protecting people from military threats became the most prominent members of the society. These people formed the core of the chiefdoms but were not able to accumulate much wealth and other possessions. Instead, they acquired high social prestige that could even be transferred to their children. However, this set of relationships did not last longer than years.

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    Once occupation of the region was well established the need for functions served by elites disappeared, and centralized chiefly communities disintegrated into smaller unfortified villages. The quintessential archaeological evidence of Sintashta-Petrovka communities takes the form of highly nucleated and fortified settlements paired with easily-recognized kurgan burial mound cemeteries.

    This pattern spread across Northern Central Eurasia in a relatively short period of about years cal. The earlier Sintashta phase cal. Bronze Age subsistence patterns apparently relied on a wide variety of resources, among which meat and milk production played a major role …. The most outstanding graves are individual male burials accompanied by weaponry projectile weapons and chariots , the insignia of power stone mace heads , craft tools, and a specific set of sacrificed animals horses, cows, and dogs.

    Chariots — the most famous and spectacular material component of Sintashta-Petrovka society — are known exclusively from burial contexts. Two-wheeled vehicles represent complex technology, incorporating some crucial innovations and the investment of substantial resources. Highly developed craft and military skills were required for their production and use. Burials with chariots probably represent military elites who used them Anthony ; Chechushkov ; Frachetti and played especially important social roles in Sintashta-Petrovka societies.

    This pattern strongly suggests that military leadership extended into the realm of ideology and general social prestige Earle — The following sequence of archaeological cultures — based on the sample of radiocarbon dates Epimakhov a; a , — is adopted: 1 the Sintashta-Petrovka phase 1 dated to cal. Some bronze tools, such as chisels, adzes, and handsaws seem more abundantly represented at some fortified settlements than at others, raising the possibility of a stronger focus on different craft products and some degree of exchange and interdependence between fortified settlements.

    He bases his conclusion an average house size of m2 and the idea that Arkaim households consisted of an extended family of several generations, similar to Iroquois longhouse inhabitants. The fully permanent residents were shamans, warriors, and craftsmen, i. Summarizing, excavated households represent very strongly similar architectural patterns, similar levels of wealth and prestige, little productive differentiation, and no evidence of elites amassing wealth through control of craft or subsistence production or any other mechanism Earle These observations sharply contradict the burial record, where strong social differentiation is visible.

    Their elaborate tombs and sculptures suggest supernatural powers and ritual roles were much more important bases of their social prominence than economic control or accumulation of wealth Drennan — On the other hand, craft activities especially metal production are highly obvious in the Sintashta-Petrovka settlements. Defensive functions could also have played some role for the entire population. This benefit might attract people in an unstable or wild environment to spend much of their time in or near such settlements Earle — Since the construction of ditches and outer walls, as well as dwellings with shared walls, requires planning and organization, purposeful collective effort must have been a key feature of Sintashta-Petrovka communities Vinogradov ; Zdanovich Sintashta-Petrovka communities thus evidence substantial investment of effort in non-subsistence activities, potentially resulting in a subsistence deficit in an economy with a heavy emphasis on herding.

    Altogether, this makes it plausible to think of the known Sintashta-Petrovka communities as special places where elites for whom military activities were important resided, and where metal production and possibly other crafts were carried out. It remains unclear just how a subsistence economy relying heavily on herding was managed from these substantial sedentary communities.

    Moving herds around the landscape seasonally is generally thought to be a part of subsistence strategy in Inner Eurasia Frachetti ; Bachura In this area migration to exploit seasonal pastures is the best strategy for maintaining a regular supply of food for livestock due to shortages of capital or of labor pool to produce, harvest, and store fodder Dyson-Hudson and Dyson-Hudson The recent stable isotope studies support this notion showing high likelihood that during the Bronze Age livestock was raised locally Kiseleva et al.

    The above raises the possibility that the residential remains that have been excavated within the fortifications of Sintashta-Petrovka communities represent only a portion of the population Hanks and Doonan , Johnson and Hanks It could be along with the general lines suggested by D. Zdanovich [] that the archaeological remains of the ordinary people who made up the majority of the population, built the impressive fortifications and stoked the subsistence economy have gone largely undetected.

    In global comparative perspective, many societies with the features known for Sintashta-Petrovka organization consisted of elite central-place settlements and hinterland populations. In terms of wealth and productive differentiation, the inside assemblage of Kamennyi Ambar demonstrates a higher degree of richness and diversity in its material assemblage, leading to the conclusion that the outside materials may represent a semi-mobile group of people who used significantly less durable materials and accumulated less possessions.

    A focus on specific objects of ceramic production in House 1 suggests some degree of productive specialization, while the elite goods in House 5 clearly point out the presence of elite members of the society. There are two possible social scenarios that explain the settlement situation during the Sintashta-Petrovka phase. The first scenario considers all three communities as simultaneous and the second scenario suggests seeing the three sites as the same community that moved around the landscape during the Late Bronze Age in order to keep the pasture grounds from degradation.

    Since no remains of permanent structures were found and any people living outside the walls must have stayed in temporary shelters. If this was the case, then the outside part of the population consisted of a semi-mobile group of people who moved to live near the fortified settlement during the winter. The pattern of animal slaughtering supports this conclusion. Animal teeth found near Kamennyi Ambar and Konoplyanka demonstrate a tendency for animal butchering during the fall, throughout the winter and spring, with less evidence of summer meat consumption. Moreover, since the Bronze Age subsistence strategy relied heavily on pastoralism, herds had to be grazed during the summer and kept safe during the winter.

    This strongly suggests that the part of the population responsible for management of animals spent their time in the summer pastures with the livestock. During the winter the animals had to be kept in the warm and safe environment of the walled settlements as suggested by the highest level of phosphorus on the house floors while the herders stayed in portable shelters in close to the walls. On the other hand, a few stone and lithic artifacts demonstrate that craft activities were carried out using cheap and abundant raw materials. The artefact assemblages also point out that the people inside accumulated wealth in the form of material belongings and luxury goods, especially, things like metal artifacts and symbolic or military-related stone artifacts, while people outside did not do that.

    However, the presence of semi-precious stones could signify some kind of wealth accumulation by the segment of population outside the walls. Since there are limits to our ability to assess social relationships from material remains, it is difficult to say if the people who lived outside the walls were oppressed or less respected. Their possible concentration on herding-related activities and livestock keeping might suggest less prestigious social status. The most prominent members of the society were, nonetheless, buried with the attributes of warriors or craft specialists, not those of shepherds, suggesting that those involved in livestock management had less social prestige.

    Furthermore, Kuzmina cites linguistic studies demonstrating that the Sanskrit word for a permanent village earlier meant a circle of mobile wagon homes, situated together for defensive purposes for an overnight camp Kuzmina However, these few individuals were buried with extremely rich offerings, like complete chariots, decorations made of precious metals or sacrifices of six horses equal to about kg of meat , etc. With such a low proportion of the population assigned such high prestige, the Sintashta local community can easily be labeled a local chiefdom.

    In the Bronze Age, the people who comprised the majority of the permanent population were involved in craft activities, including extraction of copper ores, metallurgy, bone, leather, and woodwork. The most important and labor-intensive part of the economy, however, was haymaking. The evidence of hay found in the cultural layer near Kamennyi Ambar supports the idea that animals were fed during the winter.

    Nowadays, hay cutting is typically done in July-August, the period of most intensive grazing for animals. Thus, the part of the collective that remained in the settlement had to provide the labor force for haymaking. In the wintertime, the herders returned to the settlements with the herds, and animals were kept inside the walls——a practice which is known archaeologically Zakh and ethnographically Shahack-Gross et al. In sum, the Sintashta-Petrovka chiefdoms demonstrate a three-part social order. Brahmanis , rulers and warriors Sansk. Kshatriyas , free producers Sansk.

    Vaishyas and laborers and service providers Sansk. In the case of the Sintashta-Petrovka chiefdoms, the questions of why and how exactly social complexity developed through time and why individuals choose to integrate and give up their independence can be answered as some combination of two necessities: to persist as a larger community in the ecological niche of the newly settled region, and to protect herds from theft. Those Greek states committed to resistance—Athens, Sparta, and 29 others—collaborated in a Hellenic League with Sparta in overall command; in effect this was a slight expansion of the Peloponnesian League, which Sparta had been developing over the previous half century.

    Sparta's finest hour came in the heroic defeat at Thermopylae, which became immortalized in stories of the Spartiates fighting under Leonidas to the bitter end with hands and teeth after spears and swords were broken. As a later funerary inscription at Thermopylae proclaims: Go tell the Spartans, thou who passest by,. That here, obedient to their laws, we lie.

    The Spartan myth obscured the fact that the were accompanied in their fatal struggle by unnumbered and nameless helots, whose corpses could not be distinguished from those of their masters, as well as a larger contingent from Thespiae in Boeotia. The Spartan ability to control their image was always an important element in their success. The triumph of the Greek fleet at Salamis, coupled with the fact that the Athenians had evacuated their territory, leaving their city to be captured and in due course burned by the invaders, reinforced their reputation for upholding freedom no matter the cost.

    The year also saw another great Greek victory against a foreign threat, this one in Sicily, where Greek colonies controlled much of the eastern and southern coastlines while the Carthaginians were dominant in the west. The Hellenic League's attempt to secure assistance from Syracuse and other cities had failed, partly because of disagreements over leadership but partly, perhaps, because Xerxes may have arranged for Carthage, a colonial foundation of his Phoenician subjects, to coordinate an attack with his advance into Greece.

    In the event, a Greek coalition, led by the cities of Syracuse and Agrigentum, defeated the Carthaginian forces outside Himera, pushing back Carthaginian influence for decades. In was discovered what appears to be the mass grave of soldiers killed in the battle, potentially offering important skeletal evidence about the experience of ancient soldiers. When, after their victories at Plataea in central Greece and Mycale on the Ionian coastline in , the Greeks went on the offensive, encouraging Greek communities to renounce their attachment to Persia, the Spartans soon proved unacceptable as leaders, either unenthusiastic or, if committed, overbearing and concerned primarily about personal benefit.

    As a result, the main contributors to the Aegean campaigns, who were mostly Ionians and other islanders, invited the Athenians to take over the leadership and a new league was born. Initially league members contributed either by supplying ships or financially, by paying phoros tribute , but the balance progressively shifted from physical service to cash payments so that Athens obtained a welcome subvention for the costs of its navy, which patrolled the sea on behalf of its allies.

    The Persians did not give up without a fight. In Asia Minor, Xerxes gave fiefdoms to friendly Greeks in the north the families of Gongylus from Eretria and of Demaratus, the exiled Spartan king , while further south Themistocles was given territory after being expelled from Athens. As a result, the Delian League managed to recruit very few members on the mainland north of Miletus.

    The Persians also retained footholds in southern Thrace, an area rich in resources, including wood and tar both essential for shipbuilding and gold and silver mines, but also a useful springboard for any further aggression in Europe. As a result, Athens devoted considerable energy to driving out the last Persians, whose final stronghold was Eion on the river Strymon. In the Persians established a colony on the Strymon in a strategic position called Ennea Hodoi Nine Ways , only to be driven out by the Thracians, who massacred the colonists at the Battle of Drabescus.

    Thereafter, in spite of Athenian protests and repeated expeditions to recover it, this important base in the north remained free until 35 7 bc, when King Philip II of Macedon annexed it. As hegemon leader of the Delian League, Athens displayed considerable energy and secured striking successes, which worried other Greeks, especially the cautious Spartans.

    Regular service on league expeditions made the Athenian military ever more professional, especially its trireme crews and captains but also its hoplite marines. Athenian sailors and soldiers were given regular if modest pay by the state to cover the cost of purchasing supplies. The Delian League quickly evolved from a voluntary organization of willing participants into one where some members were reluctant recruits. In the early days there were problems when a few island states declined to join, presumably calculating that they could enjoy the benefits of league activity without contributing to its costs.

    As the Persian threat receded, others reassessed the value of their contribution and attempted to leave. In such cases the league's response was clear, and these states were forced to join or rejoin. In the light of the Greek experience during the Ionian Revolt, when disunity and refusal to obey a leader had contributed to the collapse of the revolt and the defeat at Lade, this insistence was prudent. It did, however, contribute to perceptions of growing Athenian domination. By Athenian attempts to dominate their home waters in the Saronic Gulf led to conflicts with Corinth and Aegina, both significant allies of Sparta.

    In the ensuing conflict, known today as the First Peloponnesian War c. In the league, discontented allies revolted, some with Persian encouragement, while in central Greece Athens failed to retain control of the Boeotian cities, where Thebes reasserted its authority and traditional attachment to Sparta.

    One consequence of this crisis was the removal of the Delian League treasury from Delos, where it might have been vulnerable to Persian attack, to Athens. This gave the Athenians even tighter control of league business and also meant that the aparche , a one sixtieth share of the income, was now dedicated to Athena so that the acropolis effectively became the Athenian reserve bank.

    The league had also in agreed peace terms with Persia; those members that thought this would end the purpose of the league were swiftly disabused. The peace only lasted 14 years: Athens quickly recovered from the setbacks of the s and its restless energy worried the Spartan allies, notably Corinth and Megara, which persuaded Sparta to go to war to liberate the Greeks from Athenian domination. The resulting Second Peloponnesian War — was the most dramatic part of the long conflict between Athens and Sparta.

    The historian Thucydides made the Peloponnesian War in a literal as well as a figurative sense. Yet he also made the war in another way. Although we speak of the Peloponnesian War as if it were a fixed event, like the Second World War, in fact it is an artificial construct. As a revisionist, Thucydides aimed to show that the war between the Athenians and the Peloponnesians, as he called it, was a single war. This protracted conflict brought about changes in Greek warfare that can broadly be labeled professionalization. In terms of leadership Athens prized daring and innovation in its commanders.

    In the Gulf of Corinth Phormio achieved spectacular naval successes against larger Peloponnesian fleets. On land the Athenian general Demosthenes learned from a defeat by the Aetolians in the unconventional tactics that allowed him to overcome the Spartan garrison on Sphacteria in , one of the great Athenian successes.

    Most Spartan commanders were cautious and traditional, but in the early stages of the war Brasidas demonstrated that initiative and innovation could bring success; in the war's final stages Lysander overcame the Athenians after grasping the strategic importance of money and tactical advantages of time, to the chagrin of many conservatives. Regular action also raised the quality of citizen troops, and the protracted duration of the conflict led to increasing numbers of mercenaries being deployed.

    Finances would prove crucial. Naval activity was, by contrast, extremely expensive and the Spartans initially struggled to produce the funds to maintain significant fleets. Athens relied on the resources of the Delian League, both the annual income from tribute payments and the accumulated reserves from previous years, but after only five years of war strains in its financial underpinning began to emerge, with the result that the Athenians imposed a property tax on themselves and raised tribute payments from their allies; the fact that the income from the latter was being used to prosecute a Greek war made the extra demands unpopular.

    Money eventually decided the war. Athens squandered substantial resources of money, ships, and manpower in the unsuccessful attempt to conquer Sicily — , which gave opportunities for its Aegean allies to revolt and for Sparta to strike. At the same time, Athens had annoyed the Persians by supporting a rebel in Caria, with the result that King Artaxerxes responded favorably to Spartan requests for financial support, especially since Sparta agreed to return the Greeks in Asia Minor to Persian control.

    As is often the case in war, the Peloponnesian War was a proving ground for new and horrible forms of civilian suffering. There were expulsions Aegina, ; Scione, , imprisonments and enslavements Torone, , massacres Aegina, ; Melos, ; Mycalessus, , and judicial murders Plataea, Both sides pursued forms of economic warfare. Pylos served as a base for runaway helots, while Cythera was crucial for trade with Egypt and Libya. Meanwhile, spurred by intelligence from the Athenian defector Alcibiades, Sparta established a fortification of its own in Athenian territory at Decelea garrisoned —40 4.

    This cut Athens off from inexpensive, overland supply routes from Euboea, where some of its agricultural resources had been placed for safety; denied Athens access to its silver mines; and served as a rallying point for Athenian slaves who sought freedom. Thucydides 7. Thucydides devotes some of his most intense passages to the bloody revolutions in Corcyra in and 3. A civil war followed — , until the democrats, aided both by Thebes and by internal divisions in Sparta, managed to retake power.

    In the aftermath of Spartan victory, Persia was confirmed as the dominant force in Greek affairs for the next half century. Spartan attempts to control the Greek world were undermined by the behavior of some of its own citizens: Spartan harmosts military governors quickly became hated representatives of an insensitive and unresponsive power. Sparta attempted to place a friend on the throne by providing significant support to the coup of Cyrus, younger brother of Artaxerxes.

    After that failed, Artaxerxes was able to thwart Spartan plans to liberate Asia Minor by deploying his famous archers gold darics, which were minted with an image of a crouching archer. When Athenian power and confidence appeared to be recovering to a worrying degree, the threat to back Sparta again after the King's Peace rapidly brought the Athenians to heel. At Athens, losses in manpower and wealth were too great and the legacy of internal political division too bitter for Athens to regain its former glory.

    The case of Mantitheus is revealing. Trained and financially qualified as a cavalryman, he chose to participate in the expedition to Haliartus in 39 5 as a hoplite, not for military but political reasons: cavalrymen were suspect because of their former support for the Thirty, and it was believed that they were more likely to escape from this dangerous confrontation with the Spartans than the slower infantry. Mantitheus provided spending money for two hoplites from his deme , presumably because the state could not make its regular payments Lys.


    Athens formed a second naval league in with the implicit aim of defending fellow Greeks against Spartan domination. It never became a reliable basis for a recovery of Athenian power. At the same time, Sparta was suffering a crisis in military manpower. The original 9, full Spartiates of the seventh century had dropped to only about 1, by During the later fifth century the balance in its infantry regiments between Spartiates and perioikoi shifted progressively in favor of the latter, while helots were enrolled as hoplites on the promise of freedom; Brasidas had used some of these neodamodeis new people for his Thracian campaign in — Rather than making openings for new blood, elite Spartans concentrated wealth in fewer hands as the effect of defensive marriage strategies was reinforced by the inevitable elimination of some families through the deaths of their young men in battle or from disease.

    As a result, increasing numbers of Spartans fell below the property qualification for membership of the military messes, creating a class of inferior hypomeiones , men whose potential as soldiers was no longer being developed for the state's benefit. Warfare was becoming more experimental and unpredictable. During the Corinthian War in the s, the Thebans deployed in abnormally deep formation at Nemea, while at Lechaeum in the unthinkable happened when a Spartan infantry contingent was overwhelmed by a force of Thracian peltasts under the command of the Athenian general Iphicrates.

    Peltasts, named for the small, light shields or peltai that they carried, had long been used by Thracians on the fringe of the Greek world roughly modern Bulgaria , but now they moved into the center. There was also a plentiful supply of mercenaries, the product of the protracted fighting and consequent civil strife in the late fifth century. These professionals demonstrated not only the ability of Greek hoplites to fight successfully on varied terrain and against various types of enemy, but also the value of armies equipped with various categories of troops such as the traditionally despised archers and slingers.

    Long an infantry powerhouse, Thebes did not awaken as a leading power until Sparta intervened in its affairs to impose a puppet government in Thebes rebelled successfully in the winter of — as the result of a democratic coup led by two brilliant idealists, Epaminondas and Pelopidas. Thebes now became Greece's leading military power by uniting the region of Boeotia under its leadership to gain full control of its considerable manpower resources.

    Epaminondas has a reputation for tactical innovation: by expanding the use of cavalry as skirmishers, concentrating numbers on one wing of the phalanx, and using elite troops as a vanguard, Epaminondas turned Thebes into Greece's leading land power. In , the Theban army under Epaminondas crushed the Spartans at the Battle of Leuctra, killing 1, men including Spartiates and the Spartan king Cleombrotus.

    In the next few years, Epaminondas led the Thebans into the Peloponnese, where they freed the Messenian helots, restored Messenia to independence after some years of servitude, and even threatened the central villages of Sparta.

    This proved a fatal blow to Spartan power, since it destroyed the economic basis for Sparta's military system. As a result the aged King Agesilaus had to take Spartan troops to Egypt as mercenaries, fighting first for the rebel king Tachos and then for his rival Nektanabis to earn talents for Sparta, 24 24 On Agesilaus see Cartledge But Thebes, too, was overstretched and the deaths of its two main leaders removed its military inspiration.

    Thebes was not the only new power to come to the fore in the first half of the fourth century, nor peltasts the only major military development. In the west, Syracuse emerged from a confrontation with Athens as the dominant power on Sicily and as the bulwark against renewed attempts by the Carthaginians to control the whole island. Dionysius I, who overthrow the constitution to become tyrant, pioneered developments in siege tactics during his four wars against Carthage —, , — c. His engineers invented the catapult and used it in the siege of the island fortress of Motya modern Mozia in western Sicily in , when siege towers were also deployed on a causeway that Dionysius had constructed across the lagoon that shielded the Carthaginian stronghold.

    The first stone throwers are attested at Alexander's siege of Halicarnassus in and may not have existed much earlier, but even the heavy projectiles reduced the effectiveness of defensive walls, since ramparts could be cleared of defenders to permit an easier assault. Whereas in earlier eras it took months or years to starve out a fortified city, the job could now be done in weeks.

    Engineers struggled to build better walls and better catapults. Few cities could afford the expense of truly effective walls, and the state with the best catapults had a huge advantage. Another trend was the growing importance of cavalry as new regions entered the struggle for power. Unlike central and southern Greece, the north was good horse country. Jason, ruler of the city of Pherae, became leader tagos of all Thessaly in the s, which gave him access to a force of 6, mercenaries and Thessaly's superb cavalry. Under his leadership, Thessaly suddenly emerged as a great power.

    Jason briefly threatened to unify Greece and then attack Persia but he was assassinated in , and the Thebans then managed to neutralize their threatening northern neighbor. In the s royal authority was severely shaken when several satraps provincial governors revolted; Egypt remained beyond the king's reach for more than a decade and in Caria, southwestern Asia Minor, Mausolus achieved considerable autonomy for his Hecatomnid dynasty from his capital of Halicarnassus Bodrum.

    Greece's conqueror, however, came from an unexpected direction—Macedon. Macedon was a border state and historically weak. Though rich in resources and manpower, Macedon lacked organization or stability. Philip II r. Olynthus, the most important, fell in By , when an allied army dominated by the forces of Thebes and Athens met the Macedonians at Chaeronea, Philip already controlled much of the Greek world. His victory was followed by a lenient settlement and a new Panhellenic league, the League of Corinth, whose purpose was to conquer the Persian empire.

    By bringing together the innovations of the past 50 years and adding to them, Philip accomplished a revolution in military affairs. He had a significant cavalry force, as befitted horse country such as Macedon, with its broad plains, and he strengthened this by using the territory of Greek states e. Amphipolis to provide estates for men who would serve in the cavalry.

    In battle the Macedonian phalanx would hold the enemy phalanx until the cavalry could find a weak spot and break the enemy line. Lightly armed infantry, taught to dash among the horses, added to the damage. Then the phalanx could attack and finish the job.

    Philip also developed an effective siege train, so that few city walls could resist his approach; Perinthus survived in , but only thanks to its coastal location, which allowed it to be regularly resupplied by the Persians. His only significant area of weakness was at sea, where his fleet was capable of piratical attacks on Athenian interests but preferred not to confront the whole Athenian fleet.

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    Macedonian equipment embodied risk and aggression. It offered an advantage in reach and kept the enemy at a distance. The first four or five rows of the Macedonian phalanx, not three rows, thrust their spears at the enemy—another advantage. Because of its size and weight, the sarissa had to be held with both hands. As a result, the Macedonian infantryman wore a small shield that could be held by a strap around the neck, unlike the big traditional hoplite shield.

    He wore light fabric armor instead of heavy metal armor. Also, the phalanx proved very effective. At Chaeronea, the Macedonians destroyed the Theban Sacred Band, the best single unit in the whole Greek world, whose soldiers fought to the death. The men were buried under a stone lion monument and their bones survive. Close study of these bones promises to yield important information about the conditions of ancient battle.

    As for the other units in the Macedonian military, Philip's cavalrymen wore some armor and carried heavy, 3. They could do enormous damage when they charged into disrupted enemy lines. An elite infantry corps called the shield bearers or hypaspists, probably armed more like traditional hoplites than phalangists, stood between the phalanx and the cavalry to protect the gap that inevitably opened when the cavalry charged.

    Units of slingers, archers, javelin men, and mountaineers all added to the army's strength. He also inspired ferocious loyalty in his men and a competitive ethos among his cadre of officers so that his forces regularly achieved more than their opponents could imagine. The proof of this came in the Lamian War, which broke out in central Greece soon after Alexander's early death in The Greek forces struggling to throw off Macedonian domination achieved victories against Antipater and Craterus, thanks to the Thessalian cavalry and the skillful generalship of the Athenian Leosthenes, who commanded mercenary forces recently demobilized by Alexander.

    Alexander's campaigns are significant not only for their military ingenuity but also for the light they throw on the logistical mechanics of Greek warfare. Ordinary campaigns in the Greek homeland rarely posed logistical challenges, since the action was short lived and close to home, either defending one's own territory or attacking a close neighbor. Individual soldiers would take supplies with them, try to live off the land if on enemy territory, or rely on one of the personal slaves who accompanied them as batmen to obtain further supplies.

    There are occasional snippets of information, such as the fact that the Spartans at Plataea in were accompanied by seven times their number of helots, whose duties will have included ferrying food and especially water to their masters in their exposed positions. At Sphacteria in we are told by Thucydides how helots were rewarded for bringing supplies to the Spartan garrison stranded on the island, either by swimming or by running the blockade in light boats.

    Sedentary armies conducting sieges naturally attracted communities of traders keen to profit from what was effectively a captive market with money to spend. Sometimes, as at the Athenian withdrawal from Syracuse in , the traders would suffer alongside the soldiers they had been servicing. Armies on the move presented more significant problems. The Ten Thousand of Xenophon were accompanied on their fighting retreat from Babylonia by a motley collection of camp followers, many of them women; in the remote highlands of Armenia they lived from hand to mouth, extracting stored produce from communities that had the misfortune to lie on their route, but whenever they approached a significant settlement negotiations were conducted about market rights, to establish the terms under which the expedition could gain access to fresh supplies.

    Alexander's expedition relied on a combination of factors: a reputation for success, which attracted private traders in growing numbers; the extensive infrastructure of the Persian empire, with its sophisticated ration system, which Alexander could exploit as he annexed satrapy after satrapy; and also on occasions luck, as when Nearchus and the fleet returning from India despoiled the stores of the coastal Fisheaters.

    In the end, as in the beginning, Greek warfare was a game of thrones.