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Greek Mercenaries by Matthew Trundle

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By Matthew Trundle

This ebook offers an in depth photograph of the lifetime of those Greek mercenaries, reading who they have been and from what element of society they got here. It explores their motivations, their relationships and connections, either with one another and people with whom they served, and indicates how mercenaries have been recruited, paid and maintained. Matthew Trundle studies numerous proof, together with Xenophon's distinctive account of ways over 10000 Greeks attempted and did not determine the Persian prince Cyrus on his brother's Imperial throne, the fragments of a fourth century play concerning the first ever soldier of fortune, and inscriptions prohibiting Athenians from taking carrier with their neighbours. the result's a clean examine the importance of mercenaries in historic Greek society, financial system and politics, and their half within the technique that formed the good Empire of Alexander the good and the Hellenistic international.

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3). Their presence should not be underestimated. Mercenaries were part of the extra-polis network of relationships, usually personal and usually aristocratic in nature. Thucydides could have ignored them entirely as many extra-polis relationships were formed through personal and aristocratic ties. Gregory Crane (1996: 147) noted that ‘Thucydides shapes the content and language of his history in such a way as to minimize all personalized ties to immediate family or to extended kin’. : 75–94). This would extend to connections between aristocrats beyond their own state boundaries.

Griffith (1935: 1), perhaps overly simplistically, claims that ‘the professional soldiers of the ancient world were mercenaries’, as many professionals could fight in their own civic armies. Most of Alexander’s Macedonians by the end of his campaigns from 334 to 323 BC were professionals, but were they mercenaries? It is surely not a tight enough definition simply to claim that a mercenary was a professional. André Aymard (1967: 487) sought more rigid criteria. He argued that all mercenaries soldiered for a wage, but conversely even soldiers who also soldiered for a wage might still be serving in the armies of their country, king or chieftain.

V. mercenary) states a mercenary is ‘A person who works merely for money or other material reward; a hireling . . A person who receives payment for his or her services; spec. a professional soldier serving a foreign power’. Employment is the most important aspect of mercenary activity. A person employed to serve a nation, state, sovereign or political institution other than that of which he is a citizen or a resident is therefore a mercenary. He cannot have at the time of 22 I M AG E S A N D S O U RC E S employment any stake in the state or the nation that employed him beyond remuneration for his services.

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