Warfare through the Centuries


Warfare through the Centuries

Here we can examine and discuss the battles and wars the generals and their strategies.

Members: 23
Latest Activity: Feb 3, 2014

Ancient warfare is war as conducted from the beginnings of recorded history to the end of the ancient period. In Europe and the Near East, the end of antiquity is often equated with the fall of Rome in 476 and the beginning of the Muslim conquests in the 7th century. In China, it can also be seen as ending with the growing role of mounted warriors needed to counter the ever-growing threat from the north in the 5th century and the beginning of the Tang Dynasty in 618. In India, the ancient period ends with the decline of the Gupta Empire (6th century) and the beginning Islamic conquests from the 8th century. In Japan, the ancient period can be taken to end with the rise of feudalism in the Han period.

The difference between prehistoric and ancient warfare is less one of technology than of organization. The development of first city-states, and then empires, allowed warfare to change dramatically. Beginning in Mesopotamia, states produced sufficient agricultural surplus so that full-time ruling elites and military commanders could emerge. While the bulk of military forces were still farmers, the society could support having them campaigning rather than working the land for a portion of each year. Thus, organized armies developed for the first time.

These new armies could help states grow in size and became increasingly centralized, and the first empire, that of the Sumerians, formed in Mesopotamia. Early ancient armies continued to primarily use bows and spears, the same weapons that had been developed in prehistoric times for hunting. Early armies in Egypt and China followed a similar pattern of using massed infantry armed with bows and spears.

No clear line can be drawn between ancient and medieval warfare. The characteristic properties of medieval warfare, notably heavy cavalry and siege engines such as the trebuchet were first introduced in Late Antiquity. The main division within the ancient period is rather at the beginning Iron Age with the introduction of cavalry (resulting in the decline of chariot warfare), of naval warfare (Sea Peoples), and of course the development of an industry based on ferrous metallurgy which allowed for the mass production of metal weapons and thus the equipment of large standing armies. The first military power to profit from these innovations was the Neo-Assyrian Empire, which achieved a hitherto unseen extent of centralized control, the first "world power" to extend over the entire Fertile Crescent (Mesopotamia, the Levant and Egypt).

Medieval warfare is the warfare of the Middle Ages. In Europe, technological, cultural, and social developments had forced a dramatic transformation in the character of warfare from antiquity, changing military tactics and the role of cavalry and artillery. In terms of fortification, the Middle Ages saw the emergence of the castle in Europe and spread to the Middle East. Similar patterns of warfare existed in other parts of the world. In China, weapons employing gunpowder date back to the 10th century, and the first permanent standing Chinese navy was established in the early 12th century by the Song Dynasty.

The Middle East and North Africa used very different methods and equipment than was used in Europe, and there occurred a considerable amount of technological exchange and tactical adaptation between the different cultures. In Africa along the Sahel and Sudan, states like the Kingdom of Sennar and Fulani Empire employed Medieval tactics and weapons up till the 19th century

Weaponry of Medieval Times - thank you scorpian

Discussion Forum

Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy By Susan Abernethy

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 31, 2014.

26 January 1316-Battle of Skerries

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 29, 2014.

Sir Richard FitzAlan by Ky White

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 24, 2014.

Sir John de VERE, 7th Earl of Oxford

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 23, 2014.

Sir David LINDSAY, 3rd Earl of Crawford

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 23, 2014.

Fireproofing of war machines, ships and garments By Vassilios Christides

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 16, 2014.

Owain Glyndwr

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 12, 2014.

Warfare in the History of William the Marshal by DRM_peter

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Jan 7, 2014.


Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Apr 5, 2012.

Byzantium and Islam

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 27, 2011.

Greece & Rome

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 26, 2011.

Military History and Warfare: The Crusades: The Battle of Hattin 1187 by Alex

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 25, 2011.

Medes and Persians

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 25, 2011.

Unconventional Animals in the History of Warfare By Alexander J. Knights

Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 24, 2011.


Started by Dept of PMM Artists & things Feb 24, 2011.

Comment Wall


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Comment by Rev. Allen M. Drago ~ Traveler on July 11, 2009 at 12:12pm
Where to start the Alps with Hannibal? The Mongol? The introduction of the siege machines? Development of personal armor vs the weapons that were made to defeat the protection? Grant vs Lee. Rome Legions vs. Visigoths

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.


Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.


Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

Specializing in Medieval, Goth , Stage Film, BDFSM and Practitioner.

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

Traveling Within The World is meant to be such a place. A place for all of these artists to keep in touch and directly interact with their fellow geeks and re-enactment hobbyists, their clientele.

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