4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Alexander at War,
This review is from: Alexander the Great (Osprey Military) (Paperback)
Alexander the Great was arguably the greatest military strategist and warrior in history. In this book, Nick Sekunda, an expert on Ancient Greek and Persian Warfare, and John Warry a scholar on the late-Hellenistic World, bring about several years worth of original research on the army and military campaigns of Alexander.
Essentially this book is a combination of two seperate titles - 'The Army of Alexander the Great' by Sekunda, and 'Alexander 334-323 BC' by Warry - both of which are published seperately by Osprey Military Publishing.
The first book is a fascinating look at the development of the Macedonian army, it's equipment, training and military units, from the famous Companion Cavalry to the Prodromoi, Pezhetairoi phalangists and the silver shield Hypaspists. It also covers Alexander's mercenary contingents and other topics such as logistics, organisation, tactics and the army on the march.
Nick Sekunda brings some new archaeological research to this section, claiming that by studying paint samples from classical statues, we can determine what colour were the uniforms of Alexander's army. What we end up with is some questionable (although excellently drawn) colour plates by Angus McBride, which shows Alexander's soldiers in pink helmets, with purple, yellow and blue stripped armour. I personally doubt that Alexander's army would have been so colourful, and later illustrations by Geiger in the second book show them in more realistic and sombre tones.
The Second book by Warry covers Alexander's military campaigns, giving us an overview of the opposing forces, as well as their armies and commanders. Warry then takes us on a tour Alexander's main battles starting with Granicus; but the main emphasis is on the Siege of Tyre, the Battle of Gaugamela and the fighting at the Hydaspes river. Various tactical and strategic maps accompany the text, showing us the movements of the Macedonian, Persian and Indian Forces throughout the campaign. Richard Geiger provides a dozen colour illustrations that demonstrate the appearance of the soldiers of the time, although they are not as detailed or as expressive as Angus McBride's earlier work.
Dozens of photographs and line drawings, as well as colour plates, maps and a glossary make this a brilliant introduction to Alexander's military machine. Sekunda and Warry's Text is readable and informative, as well as being easily understandable.
A worthy recommendation for those who would like to understand how Alexander could conquer the known world of his time.