The Greeks of the classical age invented not only the central idea
of Western politics--that the power of state should be guided by a
majority of its citizens--but also the central act of Western
warfare, the decisive infantry battle. Instead of ambush, skirmish,
or combat between individual heroes, the Greeks of the fifth
century B.C. devised a ferocious, brief, and destructive head-on
clash between armed men of all ages. In this bold, original study,
Victor Davis Hanson shows how this brutal enterprise was dedicated
to the same outcome as consensual government--an unequivocal,
instant resolution to dispute. Linking this new style of fighting
to the rise of constitutional government, Hanson raises new issues
and questions old assumptions about the history of war. A new
preface addresses recent scholarship on Greek warfare.
"A small masterpiece of style and scholarship."-The Economist
Victor Davis Hanson is Professor of Classics at California State University, Fresno, and author and coauthor of many books, including The Landmark Thucydides: A Comprehensive Guide to the Peloponnesian War.