Ancient Greek warfare 101
For a country of renowned philosophers, mathematicians and atronomers the ancient Greeks were suprisingly good warriors.
Each city state maintained its own army. The wealthier states (such as Athens) could afford to hire mercenary companies from the middle east and Persia. In a state called sparta millitary service was compulsory and children were put through tough training techniques that would be horrific today. The state of cornith made sure every child after he completed his education spend a further two years at a millitary academy. Sparta had the best warriors but the cornithians had the best officers (chilliarchs).
The most common Greek warrior was the hoplite. It made up 90% of the standing army, they were equipped with long spears and huge rounded shileds to form a “shield wall” this would protect them from any charge. Cavarly was uncommon in Greece as only the wealthy could afford war steeds. Spartans in particular would use short swords and wear no chestplate. Greeks only had some ranged troops. Archers were hired from Libya and Syria and some armies had Javelin throwers in their ranks.
Ancient Greece fought wars between eachother. But the main enemy in ancient times was the Persians. The athenians pulled off a stunning victory when their 10,000 hoplites stopped king Darius 25,000 horse at the battle of Marathon. Sparta only 1 upped Greece at the battle of thermopolayae when 300 spartans, 700 Thespians and 400 thebians held the line against 300,000 persians. Allowing the athenians to deafeat them and end the invasion.
the Greek army could not stand the might of the roman legions and was conquered by Rome in 200BC