War lay at the heart of life in the classical world, from conflicts between tribes or states to internal or civil wars. Battles were resolved by violent face-to-face encounters: war was a very personal experience. At the same time, warfare and its conduct often had significant and wide-reaching economic, social, or political consequences. The Oxford Handbook of Warfare in the Classical World offers a critical examination of war and organized violence. The volume's introduction begins with the ancient sources for the writing of war, preceded by broad surveys of warfare in ancient Greece and Rome. Also included herein are chapters analyzing new finds in battlefield archaeology and how the environment affected the ancient practice of war. A second section is comprised of broad narratives of classical societies at war, covering the expanse from classical Greece through to the later Roman Empire. Part III contains thematic discussions that examine closely the nature of battle: what soldiers experienced as they fought; the challenges of conducting war at sea; how the wounded were treated. A final section offers six exemplary case studies, including analyses of the Peloponnesian War, the Second Punic War, and Rome's war with Sasanid Persia. The handbook closes with an epilogue that explores the legacy of classical warfare. Authored by experts in classics, ancient history, and archaeology, this handbook presents a vibrant map of the field of classical warfare studies.
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