2012 | 16 | 85-104
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Thoughts on changes in Greek warfare during the Archaic period with reference to the representation of the phalanx in contemporary art

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The purpose of this paper is to clarify theories concerning the introduction of hoplite warfare, in particular its depiction in Archaic art. Three major points of view about formation of the phalanx are presented and reexamined along with a careful analysis of iconographic evidence to produce more coherent picture of Greek warfare. This examination suggests that the Archaic phalanx developed through social and cultural changes in the Archaic period, rather than purely military developments. It is also pointed out that although the Archaic phalanx differs from its Classical counterpart, the tactical core was the same. Evaluation of depictions of the phalanx in art shows that artists had emphasized the ethos of community warfare over its realistic representation. Nevertheless the community ethos is an integral aspect of hoplite warfare itself, creating social ties and building cohesion within the polis.
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