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Phalanx warfare: Closing of the ranks
For the sake of completeness here is yet another of my old diagrams, again based on Xenophon, showing how a Spartan army of six 'Morai'/regiments deployed from the march, in column of threes, into phalanx. Note that the column is some 3,000 yards/2 miles/2,743 metres aprox long. This could be shortened by having two or more columns marching side by side in parallel. Deploying from a single column would take half an hour aprox, and the resulting phalanx would have a frontage of around 1300 yards, depending on age-classes called up. Phalanx was formed by by halting the leading 'enomotia'/platoon, called the 'Agema', and deploying successive 'enomotia' to their left, leaving the 'Agema' holding the 'place of honour' on the right flank.

The phalanx would then march on the enemy, halting to 'close up' at an appropriate distance, typically around a 'stade'/ 200 yds/180 metres or less, when a she-goat was sacrificed to Artemis Agrotera/Wild Artemis - [see e.g. Xenophon IV.2.20] before the assault/ attack was launched on the enemy, sometimes a charge at the run, but in the Spartan case a steady advance in step, with flutes playing to keep time.

digression: Justin Boyd referred to an 'intermediate' order in his post. There was no such thing according to our sources . It is one of Christopher Matthew's many inventions

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"dulce et decorum est pro patria mori " - Horace, ODES
(It is a sweet and proper thing to die for ones country)

"No son-of-a-bitch ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country" -GeorgeC Scott as General George S. Patton
Paullus Scipio/Paul McDonnell-Staff

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RE: Phalanx warfare: Closing of the ranks - by Paullus Scipio - 08-22-2016, 01:28 AM

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