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Men of BronzeHoplite Warfare in Ancient Greece$
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Donald Kagan and Gregory F. Viggiano

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691143019

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691143019.001.0001

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The Arms, Armor, and Iconography of Early Greek Hoplite Warfare

The Arms, Armor, and Iconography of Early Greek Hoplite Warfare

(p.57) Chapter 2 The Arms, Armor, and Iconography of Early Greek Hoplite Warfare
Men of Bronze

Gregory F. Viggiano

Hans Van Wees

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines hoplite equipment. Although elements of the bronze panoply associated with the classical hoplite began to appear in the late eighth century, what set the hoplite apart from his predecessors was above all his distinctive heavy wooden shield with a double handle, which is first attested circa 700 BC. This date may therefore be regarded as the beginning of the hoplite era. The shield has a central metal armband (the porpax), through which the bearer thrust his left forearm up to the elbow, and a hand grip (antilabe), at the rim of the shield, that he grasped with his left hand. A great deal of the debate about the origins of the classical phalanx centers on what the adoption of this type of shield might imply about the nature of hoplite fighting and battle formations.

Keywords:   hoplite equipment, early Greek hoplite warfare, hoplite warfare, hoplite arms, hoplite armor, hoplite iconography, hoplite shield

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