This chapter explores the Greek armored infantrymen and the weapons they carried. The hoplite shield is called Argive. The Boeotian is a shield that appears on seventh- and sixth-century
Duncan B. Campbell
This article assesses the impact of innovation on Roman society. It starts from a critical engagement with past debate about technological progress, which over the past decades has been too strongly focused on economic growth, and a re-appreciation of the literary evidence for innovation, which points to a culture in which technological knowledge and invention were thought to matter. Then, it highlights two areas where the uptake of technology had a direct impact on everyday life: material culture, where the emergence of glass-blowing, a proliferation of metal-working, and innovation in pottery-production changed the nature and amount of artefacts by which people surrounded themselves, and construction, where building techniques using opus caementicium, arches and standardized building materials revolutionized urban and rural landscapes. A concluding discussion highlights the role of integration of the Mediterranean under Roman rule in making innovation possible, and the role of consumer demand in bringing it about.
Roman authors developed a rich and creative literature in Latin on a wide range of scientific and technical subjects, intended for a variety of readerships and spanning many different genres, including didactic poetry, as well as technical prose. This essay discusses literature in Latin that sought to illuminate the natural world for its readers or instruct them in manipulating it. Particular focus is placed on the problems of identifying and classifying these varieties of literature and their relationship to other literary genres; their structure, language, and style; and their engagements with Greek technical literature. The literary traditions of individual disciplines (e.g., agriculture, architecture, astronomy, and surveying) are examined as case studies of broad patterns in literary developments including the building of technical vocabularies, the choice of poetry and prose, and the degree of organization of the text.
This chapter summarizes the basic literature on ancient logistics, and addresses the important limitations of the ancient overland transport of food and water. It then explores the responses of military commanders, especially Alexander the Great, to these limitations. Two actual cases are covered, where terrain, climate, weather, troop numbers, the capabilities of land, sea, and river transport had impacted the overall strategy. The first case considers Alexander the Great's crossing of the Gedrosian Desert in southern Pakistan and Iran, and the second looks at the logistic considerations that affected the establishment of the Roman frontier along the Rhine River in Germany. The total numbers of men, pack animals, cavalry horses, and followers are the most significant factor influencing an army's logistic capability. The maintenance of the safety of the army's food supplies and the health of the troops has been vital for any competent commander.
Paul T. Keyser
It is most peculiar that there should be any such thing as Roman science, if by ancient science we mean the sort of thing Greeks did. The genius of Greek science is precisely its weak binding to specifically Greek tradition – making it more readily assimilated by other cultures. There is, however, almost no ancient analogue for assimilators of Greek science who created works of science in a language other than Greek. The genius of the Roman assimilators of Greek science stands on their desire to bring home and master the cultural products of their captives. Moreover, its practitioners shared a belief in the interpretability of the natural world (the Greek philosophers who denied that produced no science). Some practitioners absorbed data and theories from cultures such as Egypt and Babylon, creating the disciplines of alchemy and astrology. The works of M. Terentius Varro and M. Tullius Cicero, both extant and lost, more deeply assimilate and synthesise Greek science. Vitruvius stands for the transition to works composed in some way for the princeps, a genre sometimes practised by Greeks.
This article studies ancient Jewish mobility. It lists the practicalities of travel, and then hypothesizes about the social contexts of travel. The article also considers rabbinic mobility, sea voyages, pilgrimages and other religious travels, and the transfer of knowledge.
Philip de Souza
This chapter presents a description of ancient naval warfare. Ship-to-ship combat was neither the primary purpose of ancient war fleets, nor the typical manifestation of ancient naval warfare. The Greeks had built ships that were planned for raiding or warfare by the end of the eighth century