eliasraine replied to your post: Hey it’s an emergency I need to know more fun…

War chariots plz?

Okay okay. 

So. 

Chariots back in the day were, basically, the Sherman Tank of the ancient battlefield. I mean, you have two horses, minimum, screaming along at top speed, pulling a platform with a couple dudes chucking spears and arrows and lopping off heads at twenty miles per hour. Just, three thousand pounds of horse and chariot and wild yelling charioteers and mayhem. 

It was Super Effective. Cultures all over the place used them. Egypt, the various Celtic tribes, the Romans, the Assyrians, the Persians, the Hittites (the Egyptians got their chariot info from the Hittites after the Hittites rolled into Egypt with these wild new horse drawn murder-platforms and conquered Egypt for a bit, but that’s another story.) 

Basically, the sight of a war chariot set infantrymen to shaking in their sandals. They were unstoppable mayhem machines. 

Now, when Alexander the Great started his Let’s Just Conquer Everything Guys phase, the largest army on the planet was the Persian army. They ruled a vast amount of territory, and their war chariots had rotating blades attached to the wheels that would slice and dice infantry soldiers like a blender. They were feared by every enemy of Persia who had the misfortune to run up on the bad side of King Darius. 

Look at this fuckin shit. 

If you had a couple hundred of these things charging your infantry line, it was a Bad Day. 

Alexander the Great knew this. Alexander the Great also knew that his army was almost completely composed of infantry. 

Alexander the Great also didn’t give a fuck. 

“Bring it, you fucks,” Alexander the Great mumbled, feverishly plotting troop maneuvers. “I will shove your scythed chariots completely up your own assholes.” 

See, Alexander the Great’s father had left him something very important; a fully prepped and gassed-up army. The Macedonian infantry were the finest in the world. Also, they fought with stupidly long pikes, in a phalanx. It looked something like this. 

“Fuck your horses”

Now. Horses are not completely stupid. If they’re looking at a wall of pointy, they will not charge directly into it. Alexander knew this. 

So he did something absolutely brilliant. 

He trained his infantry to, when charged by a chariot, fade to the sides. The horses will aim for the gap. As the chariot enters the gap, it is met at the front by a wall of pointy doom. The horses pull up and try to turn, but either side is also a wall of pointy doom. The charioteers can be speared at the phalanx’s leisure. 

“We said fuck your horses”

This requires the soldiers standing their ground in the face of a charging chariot to be absolutely fucking unflappable and hard as diamond plated nails. Which, the Macedonian infantry were. 

At the Battle of Gaugamela, these tactics absolutely wrecked King Darius’ war chariots. It was embarrassing. The Macedonians rolled over the chariots that had dominated battlefields for a thousand years and more like minor speed bumps. 

Chariots would never be used on a large scale in war again. Alexander had figured out how to deal with them. The riddle was solved. 

i love how in stories about ancient times and ancient heros there’s always someone who says “you will be remembered for centuries, the glory of your name will never fade” because it’s true, we’re hearing about them right this moment, they lived thousands of years before us, yet we still idolise them and love their stories. it overwhelms me and fills with awe

Greatest Gay Lovers: Alexander the Great x Hephaestion

Alexander III of Macedon son of King Philip II, would grow up to be the worlds greatest military commander.

By the age of age of 18, he brought down the greatest empire the world has ever seen. Conquered most of the known world by the age of 33. While never losing a battle.

As a child Alexander had a passion for philosophy. He attended lectures at Mieza, tutor by Aristotle. While there he would meet Hephaestion. Who would later become the 2nd most powerful man in Alexander’s empire. As well as Alexander’s life long lover and confidant.

Their tutor Aristotle described the friendship as “one soul abiding in two bodies”.

Alexander would describe his relationship with Hephaestion, to that of Achilles and Patroclus. Who are said to be lovers by Plato and Aeschylus.

Robin Lane Fox, wrote: “Already the two were intimate, Patroclus and Achilles even to those around them; the comparison would remain to the end of their days and is proof of their life as lovers…”

In 324 BC, Hephaestion contracted typhoid. Hearing the news Alexander rushed to be at his side but by the time he arrived, Hephaestion passed away.

Plutarch says ”…Alexander’s grief was uncontrollable, he flung himself on the body of his friend and lay there nearly all day long in tears, and refused to be parted from him until he was dragged away by force by his companions.“

Arrian states ”…for two whole days after Hephaestion’s death Alexander tasted no food and paid no attention in any way to bodily needs, but lay on his bed now crying lamentably, now in the silence of grief.“

Alexander cut his hair short in mourning, this last a poignant reminder of Achilles’ last gift to Patroclus on his funeral pyre: Arrian states ”… he laid the lock of hair in the hands of his beloved companion, and the whole company was moved to tears.“

Long after Alexander own death one philosopher wrote, Alexander was only defeated once and that was by Hephaestion’s thighs.

a classics ask meme
  • 1. ancient Greece or ancient Rome?
  • 2. who is your favourite Roman emperor?
  • 3. which is your favourite Greek city-state?
  • 4. tell me about the classical ladies you love the most
  • 5. what is your favourite story from Herodotus's Histories?
  • 6. who is your favourite character from the Iliad or Odyssey?
  • 7. who is your favourite ancient historian?
  • 8. what are your five favourite myths?
  • 9. what are your top five otps?
  • 10. recommend a piece of fiction about the classical world
  • 11. recommend a piece of non-fiction about the classical world
  • 12. who is your favourite poet? why?
  • 13. if you could time-travel to the classical world for a day, where would you go and why?
  • 14. which Greek tragedy is your favourite?
  • 15. Alexander the Great or Julius Caesar?
  • 16. Cicero - love him or loathe him?
  • 17. if you could recover one lost work, which one would it be?
  • 18. what is your favourite movie or TV show set in ancient Greece or Rome?
  • 19. tell me about an obscure classical figure who needs more love
  • 20. what do you love most about studying classics?
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HISTORY EDITS: Alexander the Great (July 356 BC - June 323 BC)

Alexander III of Macedon, commonly known as Alexander the Great, was king of Macedon and a member of the Argead dynasty. He was born in Pella in 356 BC and succeeded his father Philip II at the age of twenty. He spent most of his ruling years on military campaigns, and created one of the largest empires of the ancient world by the age of thirty, stretching from Greece to northwestern India. He was undefeated in battle until his death in Babylon in 323 BC.