Besieged: Siege Warfare in the Ancient World (General Military)
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The great warleaders and generals, including Darius, Alexander the Great, Hannibal and Julius Caesar successfully used siegecraft to gain their objectives. As siege tactics became integral to success in war, generals employed the minds of engineers and scientists to develop tactics, and offensive and defensive technology to give them the edge over their enemies. The mathematician Archimedes was famously and very practically involved in the defense of Syracuse in 213-12 BC. Soldiers became highly skilled combat engineers.
The book tracks the amazing developments in siege warfare through a period of nine centuries and includes details of the evolution of the artillery of the era - spear- and stone-firing catapults. Full-color artwork, many drawings and plans, photographs of archeological finds and reconstructions support expert but accessible text in this fascinating study of a less familiar facet of the ancient art of war.
of As~rian siege warfare is on display in this relief sculpture from Nimrud. Soldiers can be seen breaking through a town wall 0eft) and undermining it (centre), while the defenders attempt to neutralize a siege machine (right) by catching the ramming head with a chain. (© 2003 Topham Picturepoint / TopFoto) 9 BESIEGED 100 200km Tyre Sites in the eastern Mediterranean mentioned in the text. (© Author) As far as Sennacherib's designs onJerusalem were concerned, Isaiah prophesied that 'He
rampart level, so that they could storm into the town. At Phocaea in Turkey, Harpagus promised to restrain his troops, provided the townsfolk tore down one of their towers. But, taking advantage of their temporary reprieve, the Phocaeans evacuated their coastal town by sea, carrying off much of their property as well (Hdt. 1.164). Here, in the 199os, archaeology brought to light a massively built wall, surviving to a height of around 16ft (srn) where it had been preserved within a later tumulus,
jumping--off area platform. The counterweight played no part in this at the top. In fact, it probably resembled the operation, shipboard version, described by the historian machine's stability. Schramm and Marsden both Polybius in the 2nd century BC. He says that 'a assumed that the ladder projected by at least 40ft ladder is prepared, 4ft (I. 2m) wide, in such a way that it reaches the wall from its position; each side is (I but was required to preserve the 2m); in that case, the
'all the devices for conquering a town, known from the ancients or newly thought up, were assembled' (Tac., Hist. 5.13). Three embankments were constructed to carry battering rams against the outer wall, a new defence since the days of Pompey and Herod; a second wall was breached and taken; then two pairs of embankments were thrown up against the Temple platform. When one pair collapsed to undermining, and the other went up in flames, Titus briefly flirted (Continued p. I70) Aerial view of
attackers below. (© F. G. Maier / Swiss-German Archaeological Expedition Palaepapbos) The discovery of a stone missile during excavations at Phocaea in the 1990S re--opened the debate. The lump of tufa, found on the threshold of the gateway, was roughly worked into a sphere, 1 1·~ in (29cm) in diameter and weighing 48lb (22kg). The Achaemenid specialist Pierre Briant was convinced that the weight of the stone argued against its use as a hand--thrown weapon and proposed that the Persian besiegers