Saturday, February 09, 2008

A Greek Army on the March: Soldiers and Survival in Xenophon's Anabasis


"Professor [John W.I.] Lee provides a social and cultural history of the Cyreans, the classical Greek mercenary soldiers depicted in Xenophon's Anabasis. While the Cyrean army has often been thought of as a single political community, Lee reveals that in fact the soldiers' lives were shaped largely by their participation in a set of smaller social communities: the formal unit organization of the lochos ('company') and the informal comradeship of the suskenia ('mess group'). Drawing on a wide array of ancient literary and archaeological evidence, along with comparative perspectives from military sociology and modern war studies, he examines the full range of the Cyreans' experience, including the environmental conditions of their campaign, ethnic and socio-economic relations amongst the soldiers, equipment and transport, marching and camping, eating and drinking, sanitation, and medical care. He also accords detailed attention to the non-combatants who accompanied the army. Anyone interested in ancient Greek warfare or in Xenophon's Anabasis will want to read this book."

Scheduled for release February 29, 2008
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