Info

Ancient Warfare Podcast

Discussions from Ancient Warfare Magazine. Why did early civilisations fight? Who were their Generals? What was life like for the earliest soldiers? Ancient Warfare Magazine will try and answer these questions. Warfare minus two thousand years.
RSS Feed Subscribe in Apple Podcasts
Ancient Warfare Podcast
2024
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2023
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2022
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2021
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2020
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2019
December
November
October
September
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2018
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2017
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
September
July
June
May
March
February


2015
December
November
October
July
June
May
March
February
January


2014
October
July
June
May
January


2013
December
November
August
May
February
January


2012
October
July
April
March
February


2011
November
September
July
May
March
February


2010
December
November
October
September
April
March


2009
December
November
October
August
July
March
January


2008
December
September
June
April
February


All Episodes
Archives
Now displaying: 2023
Dec 29, 2023

Responding to several comments on recent podcasts which have looked at heavy infantry, especially the Macedonian phalanx, Murray looks at the issue of light armed troops in ancient battle accounts.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Dec 22, 2023

Mark wants to hear Murray's thoughts on comparing the Roman wars against the Vandals vs the Punic Wars. Mark writes, 'both the Roman-Vandal and Roman-Carthage wars occurred roughly in the same geographic area and included naval and land-based fighting. However, within 26 years the Vandals had conquered North Africa, the major islands of the Western Med and sacked Rome. 

In the 3rd/2nd centuries BCE the 1st/2nd Punic wars lasted over 60 years, and even then, neither side could capture each other's capitals. Granted, the Roman Empire was exhausted and fighting multiple enemies for much of the 5th century CE- but the Roman Republic also fought on multiple fronts during the 2nd Punic War. 

Then, in the 6th century CE, Belisarius was able to conquer and annex the Vandal Kingdom in less than a year. Why did these later wars seem to happen at a much faster pace? Did smaller armies and a more depopulated Mediterranean in late antiquity shorten wars? Were logistics better with better ships or Roman roads? Did later armies and navies use different tactics or technologies so that wars were much shorter?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Dec 15, 2023

Murray answers this question from Jsoth, 'during the battle of Issus, it's my understanding that the Macedonian phalanx struggled and even lost ground against Darius' mercenary Greeks. I was under the impression that if facing off directly, the sarrisa-wielding phalanx would be at an advantage with their longer spears, but here, that doesn't seem to be the case. Do historians believe this is accurate, and if so, why or how?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Dec 8, 2023

'King at just 20, Alexander of Macedon spent two years securing his northern borders and Greece. In 334 he crossed the Hellespont to begin the campaign his father had prepared: the invasion of Achaemenid Persia.'

The Ancient Warfare team discuss issue XVI.6 of the magazine Alexander versus Darius

 

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Dec 1, 2023

John asks 'What are your thoughts on the news that we are starting to be able to read some of the carbonised scrolls from Herculaneum. What do you think will be found when we can read them? What would you love to be located, rediscovered?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Nov 24, 2023

Murray is asked, 'I am reading about Spanish Conquistadors. Since they were unfamiliar with the land, they would capture local tribe members and force them to act as guides. On many occasions, the guides would deliberately lead them astray to be attacked or direct them away from villages. Are there any notable incidents in ancient warfare where this occurred?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Nov 17, 2023

Negrisan George writes, 'I Read about how the Dacians imposed high tribute on the Romans in the first century AD. I'm not an expert, but I think the Dacians were the only ones who received tribute from Roman Empire. 

And then I read how the Daco-Roman wars started: how Trajan invaded Dacia with one-third of the army of the empire. A third can you imagine? And, of course they defeated the Dacians and robbed Dacia. 

Was the purpose of the campaign to get the gold from what is today Rosia Montana in Romania? After defeating the Dacians Trajan built Trajan's Column to depict the wars - it was a huge matter of pride for the Romans. Were the Dacians the most respected and feared enemy of the Roman Empire?' 

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Nov 10, 2023

Murray talks with regular AW contributor Jo Ball about her new book from Pen & Sword on the career of Publius Quinctilius Varus and the Teutoburg Disaster of AD 9.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Nov 3, 2023

We got a Postcard! From Euchale in Heidelberg.  

Euchale asks two questions: "1. Have you ever played Age of Mythology. If so, how doyou like the depiction and speech of the various armies of the game? 2. How much of your research happens online, and how much from physical books? Any recommendations on how to find good books related to a topic? Any sources other than books and the internet?"

 

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Oct 27, 2023

"Why does Marcus Aurelius never take the blame for appointing his son his heir rather than the most qualified, like 3 of the 4 emperors before him? Maybe he should have spent less time philosophising and more time being a father."

Murray gives us his thoughts.

Oct 20, 2023

JSoth asks "Out of curiosity, if Crassus knew Caeser, then during Carrhae, why not build a heavily fortified camp the night after the first day as Caeser may have done? If the Parthians didn't fight at night, and the army was comprised of 10,000 all-mounted troops, that seems like it would have made at least some sense. In particular, if he would have been able to make palisades tall enough and simply encamped another day, thereby giving more time to come up with a proper answer to the situation."

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Oct 13, 2023

Augustus' reign started with a thorny problem. He was now the proud 'owner' of 50-odd legions, and no rivals to his power. For now. His solution was a system that lasted.

The team discusses the latest edition of the magazine issue XVI.5 The Roman Imperial Legions: The army of the Julio Claudians.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Oct 6, 2023

Manos sent this in for Murray to chew over. 

'Having heard and read so much about Phillip & Alexander’s training of the Macedonian phalanx as to becoming flexible in manoeuvring difficult battle landscapes as well as proficient when encountering lateral attacks, I remain sceptical about the devastating results in both the battles of Cynoscephalae and Pydna. Was it hubris on the part of Phillip and later his son Perseus or lax training which resulted in both battles’ outcome?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Sep 29, 2023

Patron of the podcast, Mathew, sent this question in. 

Are there accounts of artillery specifically targeting leaders, for example, a Legatus or centurion? Or dedicated expert archers, etc., to do the same? Imagine a sniper-type scenario. This seems like a tactic that could have been used to demoralise a force and eliminate command and control quickly.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Sep 22, 2023

Chris poses this question for Murray. 

'More Roman soldiers were killed in the civil wars against other Roman soldiers than any other adversary. Why was it so easy for usurpers to convince their soldiers to fight against their brethren? And why didn't emperors try to change whatever facilitated this kind of behaviour?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Sep 15, 2023

In this episode of the podcast, Murray answers two questions, both on the battle of the Hydaspes.

The first was sent in by @gregoriogariglio7750. How many Macedonian and Indian casualties were at the Battle of the Hydaspes?

The second question is from @jsoth2675. Is it possible, or likely even, that the battle of Hydaspes against King Porus was fabricated? Are there any Indian sources that agree a battle took place? 

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Sep 1, 2023

We are between issues of the magazine for this episode of the podcast. After casting around for ideas, Mark suggested the topic for Friday night's chat: the impact of weather on conflict.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Sep 1, 2023

Murray ponders how little information we have on Aurelian, Probus etc. but Diocletian is well documented in the histories Augusta. Thanks to @Evocletian for sending this question in.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Aug 25, 2023

Daniel writes, 'Plutarch mentions a letter to Alexander from Anaxarchus in his Moralia. It was stated that there were 'worlds innumerable' and that Alexander wept as he had not even conquered a single one. Firstly, could this be an early precursor to the 'multiverse' theory so popular in media at the moment? Secondly, would you be able to comment on the contrast between this statement and the usual notion that Alexander wept when 'there were NO more worlds left to conquer', as these both seem to contradict each other?'

Thank you Daniel for sending that in.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Aug 18, 2023

Jsoth, wonders what account of the battle of Milvain Bridge does Murray find most convincing, and what supporting evidence is of the battle?

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Aug 11, 2023

'A general for his stepmother Hatshepsut from a young age, Thutmose III conducted dozens of campaigns into the ancient Near East and Nubia, leaving extensive records.'

In this episode of the Ancient Warfare Magazine podcast, the team discusses XVI.4 New Kingdom Empire Builder: Pharaoh Thutmose III goes to war.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Aug 4, 2023

After recently rereading Thucydides, GC asks, "Fire-signals of an attack were also raised towards Thebes; but the Plataeans in the town at once displayed a number of others, prepared beforehand for this very purpose, in order to render the enemy’s signals unintelligible." 

I would have imagined that a fire signal was quite simple, fire or no fire. This implies much greater sophistication. 

What is known about this?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Jul 28, 2023

In this week's Any Warfare Answers, Murray answers this question sent in by Jamie. 'The rest of the guys on the podcast all have their areas of expertise and are each an expert in a different, very specific aspect of ancient history, whereas you seem to have a grasp of all of it.

How did you become such a generalist?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Jul 21, 2023

Kyle asks, 'What was the mechanism that Carthage (or really any ancient power) used to recruit mercenaries? Were there people whose job it was to travel Gaul, Iberia, Greece, etc., recruiting, or was the sending of mercenaries part of political negations?'

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

Jul 14, 2023

Something slightly different for this episode of the Ancient Warfare podcast. Regular of the podcast Marc De Santis talks to Murray about his work, focusing on the books Murray has written for Osprey, specifically his four books for the Combat Series.

Join us on Patron
patreon.com/ancientwarfarepodcast

 

1 2 3 Next »