BRONZE AGE GREEK WARRIOR 1600-1100 BC
ABOUT THE AUTHORS AND ILLUSTRATOR R A F F A E L E D ' A M A T O was awarded a degree in Romano-Byzantine Law in 1993 from the University of Turin. His passion for ancient and medieval
military history led him to collaborate with magazines and specialist publications in these fields, together with various universities and
institutions. He has published two books on the Mycenean age and Dark Age warriors and is working as an external researcher at the University of Athens.
A N D R E A S A L I M B E T I has had a lifelong interest in ancient military history, the Bronze Age in Greece and the Middle East in particular. He is the author of various articles on aerospace technology and flight equipment.
G I U S E P P E RAVA was born in Faenza in 1963. Entirely self-taught, Giuseppe has established himself as a leading military history artist, and is inspired by the works of the great military artists, such as Detaille, Meissonier, Rochling, Lady Butler, Ottenfeld and Angus McBride.
WARRIOR • 153
BRONZE AGE GREEK WARRIOR 1600-1100 BC
R D'AMATO & A SALIMBETI
ILLUSTRATED BY GIUSEPPE RAVA Series editor Marcus Cowper
First published in Great Britain in 2011 by Osprey Publishing Midland House, West Way, Botley, Oxford 0X2 OPH, UK 44-02 23rd St, Suite 219, Long Island City, NY 11101, USA E-mail: [email protected]
© 2011 Osprey Publishing Limited. All rights reserved. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, electrical, chemical, mechanical, optical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the copyright owner. Enquiries should be addressed to the Publishers. A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. ISBN: 978 1 84908 195 5 E-book ISBN: 978 1 84908 196 2 Editorial by llios Publishing Ltd, Oxford, UK (www.iliospublishing.com) Cartography: Map Studio, Romsey, UK Page layout by: Mark Holt Index by Sandra Shotter Typeset in Sabon and Myriad Pro Originated by PDQ Media Printed in China through Worldprint Ltd 11 12 13 14 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 www.ospreypublishing.com
DEDICATION To the Greeks, so they can remember the glory of their ancient lineage.
A U T H O R S ' ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The authors would like to thank all the scholars and friends that have helped in the realization of this book, as well as the museums and institutes visited. A great deal of new historical information and material on the topic has been obtained thanks to Prof loannis Moschos, responsible for the
Prehistoric Department of the New Archaeological Museum of Patras,
who kindly discussed with us many important issues. Thanks should
also be expressed to the former director of the Patras Museum, Dr Michalis Petropoulos, for his help and assistance on the territory of Arcadia.
The recently found pieces of armour from Thebes have been reproduced
here thanks to the courtesy of Dr Heleni Andrikou of the Hellenic Ministry
W e should furthermore thank the Deutsches Archaologisches Institut (DAI) at Athens and in particular Dr Reinhard Jung for information and material furnished, Prof Taxiarchis Kolias, Director of the Institute for Byzantine Research at the University of Athens, and Dr Andrea Babuin of the University of loannina. A particular acknowledgement is due to D.ssa Lucia Alberti of the Istituto di Studi sulle civilta dell'Egeo e del Vicino Oriente (ICEVO) at the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR) of Rome for his help in the reconstruction of the Creta plate. Last but not least, the authors would like to thank the following institutes and museums: the Archaeological National Museum of Athens, the Thebes Museum, the Mycenae Museum, the Iraklion Museum, the Nauplion Museum, the Pilos Museum, the British Museum and the Archaeological Museum of Larnaka. The authors are deeply grateful also to Stefanie Groener for her linguistic assistance and help in editing the English text. A special acknowledgement must be given to Giuseppe Rava - the true heir of Angus Mcbride - who has worked with great passion to produce the splendid colour plates that embellish this book.
ARTIST'S N O T E Readers may care to note that the original paintings from which the colour plates in this book were prepared are available for private sale. All reproduction copyright whatsoever is retained by the Publishers. All enquiries should be addressed to: Giuseppe Rava, Via Borgotto 17,48018 Faenza (RA), Italy The Publishers regret that they can enter into no correspondence upon this matter.
T H E WOODLAND T R U S T Osprey Publishing are supporting the Woodland Trust, the UK's leading woodland conservation charity, by funding the dedication of trees.
ABBREVIATIONS Periods of the Greek Bronze Age MH MM LH
Middle Helladic Middle Minoan Late Helladic LH Ilia = 1405-1340 be LH lllb = 1340-1200 be LH lllc= 1200-1100 be Late Minoan
Linear B tablets PY KN TH MT
Pylos Knossos Thebes Mycenae
MILITARY ORGANIZATION AND C O M M A N D STRUCTURE
WEAPONS AND ARMOUR
Garments . Shoes
Box chariot . Quadrant chariot . Dual chariot . Rail chariot . Four-wheeled chariot Horse-mounted warriors . Chariots in Linear B
SIEGE W A R F A R E A N D NAVAL W A R F A R E
Seige warfare . Naval warfare
T H E LIFE A N D D U T Y OF A W A R R I O R
Duties in the citadels and abroad . Leisure activities - Training and discipline Belief and belonging
THE WARRIOR IN BATTLE
SITES, M U S E U M S A N D E L E C T R O N I C R E S O U R C E S
BRONZE AGE GREEK WARRIOR 1600-1IOOBC INTRODUCTION More than a century has passed since Heinrich Schliemann brought to light the brilliant treasures of Mycenae. The rich appearance of the gold-covered warriors, still lying in their graves, confirmed to the world the truth about Homer's epic and the real historical existence of the Achaeans described in his poems. By the combined study of the mythical tradition, archaeological findings and written sources represented by the Linear B tablets (which are written in a very archaic form of Greek, in a syllabic script) our knowledge of Achaean civilization has advanced greatly. The Achaeans were an Indo-European group probably arriving on the Greek mainland from the Caucasus or Asia Minor around 2000-1800 BC. These groups conquered and absorbed the previous indigenous population who, since the Neolithic Period, inhabited Greece and the Aegean Islands. It was probably from the mixing of these new invaders and the natives (initially in the areas of Epyrus and Thessaly, and then across the Greek mainland and islands) that the ethnic group designated in the Linear B tablets as A-ka-wi-ja-de was formed (i.e. the Achaeans or Danaoi (Da-na-ja) also recorded in contemporary Egyptian and Hittite sources). Originally the first political centres of the Achaeans mirrored the more evolved Minoan civilization of Crete (Ke-re-te in the Linear B tablets) in some aspects of their material culture, including the military. Very soon it was clear that the essential meaning of life for the Achaeans was found in warfare. Achaean society was militaristic: the favourite totemic animals were the horse, the lion and the boar; the main divinities were the warlike Ares (A-re) and Pallas Athena (A-ta-na Po-ti-ni-ja), often represented with a figure-of-eight shield, a helmet and a spear. The exterior signs of the power of the kings of Mycenae, whose weapons and armour were covered with Egyptian gold, leaves no doubt about the warlike character of the new rulers of the Greek Bronze Age. After the fall of the Cretan Thalassocracy around the 15th century BC, probably echoed in the legend of the mythical Achaean King of Athens Theseus and his war against the Cretan King Minos, the Achaeans began to build up their maritime power in the Aegean Sea, expanding towards the Aegean Islands and Anatolian coast. In some cases, such as at Milawata (Miletus), they also replaced the previous Minoan settlements. Achaean objects have been found even as far as Britain, and precious material such as electrum, which was used early in the Mediterranean and which has been found in the royal graves at Mycenae, has been also found in the Baltics. 4
Jug from Dromolaxia-Tripes, Grave 1, with a picture of a warrior, 1600-1450 BC. Larnaka Museum. (Author's collection)
Around 1450 BC Greece was divided into a series of warrior kingdoms, the most important being Mycenae, Tiryns, Pylos and Thebes. In the monumental inscription of Amenophi Ill's temple in Egyptian Thebes (early 14th century BC), several cities of Danaja/Tanaja and Kafta (Crete) are recorded as 'kingdoms of equal status', amongst them Mukania (Mycenae) and Thegwais (Thebes). The end of Achaean civilization, in 1200-1100 BC, can be ascribed partially to the internal wars between the Achaean kingdoms and the economic crisis on the mainland. Traditions and dialects also suggest that the Achaean kingdoms fell before the invasions from the north-west and south (probably by migrations of the Sea Peoples, some of them also from the Achaean mainland and islands, or migration of the Dorians - a Greek tribe with a different dialect from the Achaeans), which brought not a cultural but merely a political change in Greece. 5
The greatest epic of the Achaeans, however, was the Trojan War, probably fought at the end of the 13th century BC or at the beginning of 12th century BC, and described in Homer's poems. It is often said that, although the substance of the Iliad and Odyssey is derived from a Bronze Age historical setting, a continuous tradition of retelling the story means th...