Warriors of the Ancient World
Soldiers * Chariots * Cavalry * Sieges * Generals
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Includes all the main types of warriors and soldiers from the ancient Egyptians of the third millennium BCE through to the Roman legionaries and Barbarians of the second century AD. Who were the Persian Immortals? What did King Leonidas and his Spartans do at Thermopylae in 480 BCE? What was a Macedonian phalanx and how did the Romans defeat it at the battle of Pydna in 168 BCE?
Chapter Two: Missile Troops
Slingers and archers were a crucial component of most Ancient armies. What was the range of an Assyrian slinger? How did the Romans deploy their pilum tactics when attacking an enemy? What was the famed Parthian shot?
Chapter Three: Cavalry and Chariots
Among the Egyptians, Assyrians and Greeks, chariots were key weapons, especially as shock troops in a set piece battle. The Romans, however, didn't use chariots, and relegated cavalry to a subsidiary role. Learn about the fearsome Persian scythed chariots, how Hannibal's elephants fared at the battle of Trebbia in 216 BCE, Alexander's elite Companion cavalry and their role in defeating Darius' Persians at Gaugamela.
Chapter Four: Naval Warfare
Persian fleets fought a series of great naval battles against the Greeks, including the great Greek victory at Salamis (480 BCE). This section explores how fighting with the typical Greek warship of the day, the trireme, worked, and why Persian naval power ultimately failed. Learn also how the Romans tried to fight their land battles at sea, where they used the corvus boarding device during the Punic Wars. How Roman ships got bigger and more complicated, up to those that fought at the great battle of Actium (31 BCE).
Chapter Five: Cities and Sieges
Why did the Greeks build cities far from Greece? How were sieges conducted at places like Tyre (332 BCE)? Catapults and battering rams, which the Roman engineers used to capture cities. Describes how the Romans defended their own cities and attacked those of other people, using siege weapons, such as the trebuchet, battering ram, onager, ballista and siege towers. Includes the great siege of Alesia (52B CE), where Julius Caesar defeated Vercingetorix and his massive Gaul army, as well as the assault on the hilltop fortress of Masada (73 CE).