Men of Bronze: Hoplite Warfare in Ancient Greece

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Donald Kagan, Gregory F. Viggiano
Princeton University Press, Jun 9, 2013 - History - 312 pages
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Men of Bronze takes up one of the most important and fiercely debated subjects in ancient history and classics: how did archaic Greek hoplites fight, and what role, if any, did hoplite warfare play in shaping the Greek polis? In the nineteenth century, George Grote argued that the phalanx battle formation of the hoplite farmer citizen-soldier was the driving force behind a revolution in Greek social, political, and cultural institutions. Throughout the twentieth century scholars developed and refined this grand hoplite narrative with the help of archaeology. But over the past thirty years scholars have criticized nearly every major tenet of this orthodoxy. Indeed, the revisionists have persuaded many specialists that the evidence demands a new interpretation of the hoplite narrative and a rewriting of early Greek history. Men of Bronze gathers leading scholars to advance the current debate and bring it to a broader audience of ancient historians, classicists, archaeologists, and general readers.

After explaining the historical context and significance of the hoplite question, the book assesses and pushes forward the debate over the traditional hoplite narrative and demonstrates why it is at a crucial turning point. Instead of reaching a consensus, the contributors have sharpened their differences, providing new evidence, explanations, and theories about the origin, nature, strategy, and tactics of the hoplite phalanx and its effect on Greek culture and the rise of the polis.

The contributors include Paul Cartledge, Lin Foxhall, John Hale, Victor Davis Hanson, Donald Kagan, Peter Krentz, Kurt Raaflaub, Adam Schwartz, Anthony Snodgrass, Hans van Wees, and Gregory Viggiano.

 

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Contents

CHAPTER 1 The Hoplite Debate
1
CHAPTER 2 The Arms Armor and Iconography of Early Greek Hoplite Warfare
57
Refighting Ancient Battles
74
CHAPTER 4 Setting the Frame Chronologically
85
CHAPTER 5 Early Greek Infantry Fighting in a Mediterranean Context
95
CHAPTER 6 The Hoplite Revolution and the Rise of the Polis
112
How Hoplites Fought
134
The Practical Limitations of Hoplite Weapons and Equipment
157
Greek Soldiers of Fortune and the Origins of Hoplite Warfare
176
CHAPTER 10 Can We See the Hoplite Revolution on the Ground? Archaeological Landscapes Material Culture and Social Status in Early Greece
194
Models of Historical Development
222
CHAPTER 12 The Hoplite Narrative
256
LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS
277
INDEX
279
Copyright

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About the author (2013)

Donald Kagan is Sterling Professor of Classics and History at Yale University. His most recent books are The Peloponnesian War and Thucydides: The Reinvention of History. Gregory F. Viggiano is associate professor of history at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut. He and Kagan are the authors of Problems in the History of Ancient Greece.

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