Brill’s New Pauly

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(754 words)

[German version]

The word ὁπλίτης (hoplítēs, pl. hoplítai) is derived from ὅπλον (hóplon, ‘equipment, shield’; esp. in the pl. ὅπλα, hópla ‘weapons’) and describes heavily armed foot soldiers. Their bronze armament (panoply) consisted of a round shield of 0,9 m diameter with a vambrace (πόρπαξ, pórpax) in the centre and a handgrip (ἀντιλαβή, antilabḗ) at the edge, a helmet, a breastplate, greaves, which reached from the ankles to above the knees, a spear for thrusting as well as a short sword for close-quarters combat. There are archaeological re…

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Gehrke, Hans-Joachim (Freiburg), “Hoplitai”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 07 March 2021 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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