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The Macedonian War Machine
on 1 July 2008
Nick Sekunda is an expert on Hellenistic Warfare who has written a dozen titles on the Ancient Greeks, including overviews of the Spartan army. He's also conducted pioneering research on the Achaemenid Persian military - and is a leading expert on the subject. He's therefore the perfect author for a book on the war machine of Philip and Alexander of Macedon.
This short title introduces you to the army of Alexander. It begins by showing you the army's development under Philip of Macedon, before explaining the army's administration; equipment; infantry, cavalry and mercenary contingents; tactics; strategy; logistics and organisation.
Short sections cover everything from the army on the march, to the Pezhetairoi infantryman's equipment, to the Companion cavalry's tactics and so much more.
Angus McBride provides 8 pages of full colour plates, all of which are beautifully drawn. You might be shocked by the appearance of the soldiers on these pages as they are displayed in bright, gaudy costumes. Expect to see Prodromoi cavalrymen in pink helmets, with blue, yellow and purple stripped tunics and armour. Nick Sekunda states that the colour comes from paint samples taken from ancient statues and murals, although I personally find it hard to believe that Alexander's soldiers would have worn such colourful clothing on the battlefield.
The book also contains a few black and white photgraphs of statues, mosaics and other archaeological discoveries from the period, which help enliven the text.
All in all, a good basic introduction to the Army of Alexander the Great.