The Evolution of Warfare in Ancient Greece

There happens to be a very pivotal relation between a historian and the fact that he chooses to delve upon. Both can’t stand without each other.  Historians since time immemorial have not been able to ignore putting war as one of the main themes in their volumes. Indeed, history has been adorned by wars, battles and feuds. One thing common to all wars, be it the Peloponnesian war or the current war in Afghanistan, has been control. Though, the types and forms of these controls have changed significantly with the course of time. Nation-states, Empires or monarchies all ameliorated their military prowess to prevail in war in order to wrest further control or keep the possessions in check. Ancient Greece is not a sui generis in this case; rather war was a very important theme in the very period. Hence, it is no gainsay that the role of the military was pronounced. Warfare changes with the changing nature of principles of war; though, the cardinal principles remain the same.  The developing threats necessitated the advancement of concepts of war, which will be discussed subsequently in the paper. This paper attempts to shed-light on the changing nature of warfare in what historian call the ancient and classical period in Greek history.  What if the Persian War had ended in a shambolic defeat? How could have things been against the Melos if military might was feeble? It is arguable that the real metal of a civilization resides in its cultural and intellectual realms. Military might was and still remains an element of power; the paper will seek to enshrine upon the evolution of the concepts of warfare. Most importantly, an analysis of the fact that changing strategies and tactics helped thwart a multitude of threats. The focus would be on the techniques of war fighting: Warfare and not on the wars in particular.  The military revolution brought about by King Philip and Alexander cannot escape your attention.

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Syed Ali Zia Jaffery

Syed Ali Zia Jaffery

Syed Ali Zia Jaffery is a Research Analyst and Sub-Editor at Global Village Space (GVS). He frequently writes on defense and strategic affairs of South Asia. He is a Contributing Analyst to CommandEleven.
Syed Ali Zia Jaffery

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