Ancient Macedonian Army – Prodromoi/Sarissophoroi/Scouts

 

AncientMacedonianHistory1 Ancient Macedonian Army   Prodromoi/Sarissophoroi/Scouts

In the ancient Greek world, Prodromoi were the skirmisher light cavalry. In the Macedonian cavalry under Alexander, those whose special weapon was the Sarissa were called on some occasions “prodromoi” while on others “sarissophoroi”(meaning the one who carries a Sarissa in Greek).  Berve [1] supported the theory that “Prodromoi” (meaning forerunners in Greek) is simply the old designation of the Sarissophoroi. Sometimes we could find them also called Lancers. Markle [2] underlined the fact that Sarissophoroi played an important part in all the major battles of Alexander until the year 329 BC, after which they are not mentioned. He adds “they were sent ahead of the army for reconnaissance, regularly employed for pursuit requiring great speed and endurance and for fast marches intended to catch the enemy unprepared”.

 

Under Alexander, there were four Ilai of Sarissophoroi. The main weapon of the Sarissophoroi was of course a Sarissa, but in a shorter version of the infantry Sarissa. The rear point of the weapon could be used against an enemy coming from behind. The cavalry Sarissa could be also reversed in case the front of the weapon broke during a battle.

 

[1] Berve, Das Alexanderreich auf prosopographischer Grundlage, 2 Bde., 1926

[2] Minor M. Markle, III, ‘Use of the Sarissa by Philip and Alexander of Macedon’

 

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Comments
Aaron says:

im just wanting to no how big was the macedonian army?