Phalangite (φαλαγγίτης) is the Greek name for
- an infantryman deployed in a phalanx (massive rectangular (or square) closed formation ) of Classical and Hellenistic antiquity. The Macedonian so-called sarissaphoroi ("sarissa-bearers") had a tactical advantage over other phalangites because of their extremely long pikes known as sarissas. These soldiers and their sarissas were mainly developed by Philip II of Macedon and his son Alexander the Great as an expansion on and counter to the hoplites of Ancient Greece.
- a Roman legionary, trained for similar closed formations such as the testudo.
Phalangites had an advantage over other spearmen of ancient times due most notably to their massive sarissas. Under Alexander the Great the sarissas would have reached a length of 18 feet (5.5 m). They used a shield around 2 feet (60 cm) in diameter, and wore a breastplate and a helmet for armor. They also carried a dagger as a secondary weapon, but due to its length of around 10 inches (25 cm), it was rarely used in combat. Phalangites were nearly impregnable from the front because of the massive length of their spears, but they were tactically cumbersome and were vulnerable from the sides because a phalangite could not turn quickly with the giant sarissa.The phalangite's spear the sarissa,[Sar.is.sa]was perceived as the Macedonion couter-part to the famed Greek Doru[Dor.u]carried by all Greek Hoplites[Hop.li.tes],which was a sturdier,heavier,and shorter version of the Macedonion sarissa which averaged around 6 feet long.Generally speaking the Macedonion Phalanix[Phal.inx]was 8 rows deep and totalled 256 Men.
- Macedonian phalanx
- Falangist, name or certain Mediterranean (notably Spanish, Lebanese) political militia etc.
- Larousse (Encyclopaedia in French)
|This article on military history is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|