Summary

Greek and Roman warfare was unlike that of any other culture before or since. The key difference is often held to be that the Greeks and Romans practiced a "Western Way of War". in which the aim is an open, decisive battle - won by courage instilled, in part, by discipline.
Here, Harry Sidebottom looks at how this Western Way of War was constructed and maintained by the Greeks and Romans and why this concept is so prevalent today. All aspects of ancient warfare are thoroughly examined - from philosophy and strategy to the technical skills needed to fight. Sidebottom examines war in the wider context, showing how wars were able to shape classical society, and how an individual's identity was sometimes constructed by war, as in the case of the Christian soldier fighting in God's name. He also explores the ways in which ancient society thought about conflict: Can a war be just? Why was siege warfare particularly bloody? What role did divine intervention play in the outcome of a battle?
Taking fascinating examples from the Iliad, Tacitus, and the Persian Wars, Sidebottom uses arresting anecdotes and striking visual images to show that any understanding of ancient war is an ongoing process of interpretation.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.
In a hurry? Listen to more Very Short Introductions.
©2005 Harry Sidebottom (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
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1 out of 5 stars
By Edward Williams on 17-09-12

dull and scattered

What disappointed you about Ancient Warfare?

No narrative story read without emotion.

Would you ever listen to anything by Harry Sidebottom again?

No. Sounds like encyclopedia entries, just a listing of facts.

Would you be willing to try another one of Sean Crisden’s performances?

No. No emotion whatsoever.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Ancient Warfare?

Uh, the book...

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4 out of 5 stars
By Andrew J. Jackson on 03-05-12

Great supplemental reading for military history

I purchased this book to give me a jump start for a class in military history I was struggling in. I found it to be a good listen, historically accurate, and a key factor in the "A" I received. A great head start read for anyone interested in learning more about Ancient Warfare.

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