The Greek, and Roman cultures have left a mark on world civilization that extends into the present day. Through their contributions to philosophy, mathematics, government and language these two cultures have carved out an often violent history. Both started as small factions jointed together for strength, spread their influence through conquest and trade, and were invaded and eventually fell to outside and internal corruption. Yet although their cultures were strikingly similar, they differed greatly in their political philosophy.
The Greek culture started with the ancient Achaeans, who around 1500 BC occupied what is now mainland Greece. Their level of technology was noticeably less superior to that of the outside world, and especially to that of the Middle Eastern armies. Although they did borrow some of their fighting techniques from their neighbors the Greeks did not have a standing cavalry or diploy archers as a separate fighting unit. Rather the bow was exploded by the individual soldier to be used in hand to hand combat, and likewise so was the use of the horse.
Nor is there evidence of the development of the various combat arms- infantry, cavalry,
chariots, archers, siege trains- or the art of coordinating these forces with one another.
The Greeks relied primarily on starvation and blockade to weaken their
opposing enemies forces. It wasn't until the time of Alexander in the 3rd century BC that they reached an effective fighting style and sophistication seen in armies like the Persians or Assyrians. Armies themselves were limited to less than 1000 men.
Achaean Greece was undoubtedly a target for foreign conquest, and on at least one occasion was completely destroyed. It wasn't until the eighth century BC that the Greek culture was able to pull itself out of a dark period. It was this dark...