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Fortifications

(2,871 words)

Author(s): Burckhardt, Leonhard (Basle) | Miller, Martin (Berlin) | Blech, Michael (Madrid) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum) | Baatz, Dietwulf (Bad Homburg)
[German version] I. Greece After the massive Mycenaean fortified palaces had been abandoned, several centuries passed before larger fortifications were again built in Greece. During the Geometric Period fortification construction in the motherland remained modest. Simple structures were built that left few if any remains, and the ruins of Mycenaean fortifications sufficed for protection requirements. However, citadels (acropoleis), peninsulas, and other topographically suitable locations were fortif…

Catapult

(1,122 words)

Author(s): Baatz, Dietwulf (Bad Homburg)
[German version] A. The invention of catapults The ancient catapult was a long-range weapon of war which threw its projectiles by means of spring power. There probably is no other technical device from antiquity about which we have equally comprehensive information from illustrated technical treatises (Philo, Vitruvius, Heron), historiography (Ammianus Marcellinus), specialist military literature (Vegetius) and other illustrations. In recent times the number of archaeological finds which complement the…

Siegecraft

(1,624 words)

Author(s): Baatz, Dietwulf (Bad Homburg)
I. Greece [German version] A. Archaic and Classical periods From the beginnings of the pólis in the 8th/7th cents. BC, urban fortifications in the true sense began to appear in the Greek world. During a siege, spears, slings and bows would be used as long-distance weapons for attack and defence; hand-thrown stones were also an effective weapon of defence. Attack technology was modest: ladders for climbing walls, axes and simple battering rams for breaking open gates. Meanwhile, the ci…

Mills

(1,880 words)

Author(s): Nissen, Hans Jörg (Berlin) | Baatz, Dietwulf (Bad Homburg)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient and Egypt In the Near Eastern and Egyptian cultures, only grinding mills were used. These consisted of an oblong grindstone and a running stone that was moved back and forth on top of it. Rotary mills, the upper stone of which turned on an axis, did not appear until Roman influence made itself felt. The grinding stones were mostly of basalt, imported from afar when necessary. The terms for the grinding and rubbing stones are NA4.ARÀ in Sumerian, erûm and narkabum in Akkadian, bnwt in Egyptian. Mills could be found in every household; large-scale mill…

Athenaeus

(2,425 words)

Author(s): Meier, Mischa (Bielefeld) | Mehl, Andreas (Halle/Saale) | Bowie, Ewen (Oxford) | Weißenberger, Michael (Greifswald) | Baatz, Dietwulf (Bad Homburg) | Et al.
(Ἀθηναῖος; Athēnaîos). [German version] [1] Lacedaemonian, contributed in 423 BC to the truce with Athens Lacedaemonian, son of Periclidas, contributed in 423 BC to the truce with Athens (Thuc. 4,119), which he officially announced to  Brasidas a little later together with the Athenian Aristonymus (Thuc. 4,122). Meier, Mischa (Bielefeld) [German version] [2] Son of Attalus I of Pergamum, member of the 'Royal Council' A. was, as the youngest son of Attalus I of Pergamum, a member of the ‘Royal Council’; he is also documented as an agonothete (Alt. Perg. 8,3,…