Special Sub-Topic: Hoplites
|How long was the original spear of a hoplite?|
2.7 metres. They were 2.7 metres at first, but they were eventually exchanged for smaller weapons such as javelins or daggers to allow greater mobility.
|What was the Greek name for a hoplite spear?|
Doru. This was the first weapon used by a hoplite or Spartan hoplite.
|What is the name of the shield they use?|
Hoplon. A hoplon is a round and heavy shield and was used only by hoplites.
|What formation was the spartans known to use?|
Phalanx formation. This formation contributed dearly to the "300" spartan's first battle against the Persians. It was believed to be almost inpenetrable but was vulnerable to arrows.
|Who was the first and only leader of the "300 Spartans"?|
King Leonidas. King Leonidas was the leader of the "300".
|What man both was believed to be a god, and had a deep-seated hatred for King Leonidas?|
Xerxes. In the "300 Spartans" movie Xerxes is portrayed as a tall, huge, bald man who towered over his rivals - though he actually had hair and a beard. He was considered a god by many but did not consider himself such - as depicted in "300".
|Which battle saw the "300 Spartans" perish?|
The Battle of Thermopylae. At the Battle of Thermopylae, the "300 Spartans" died, including Leonidas after he abjured the 'god' Xerxes and claimed his right to freedom. The Spartans were like a big family, and they refused to be slaves to anyone.
|During the battle at Thermopylae, as a few Spartans remained standing; they witnessed the great King Leonidas fall and tried desperately to retrieve the body, but they were eventually felled by arrows. King Xerxes had a great disdain for Leonidas and ordered ... what?|
Decapitation and crucifixion of his body. Lord Xerxes did not want any trace of King Leonidas left. He only wished that himself be remembered and did not want anyone to know of the shame King Leonidas had distributed to him that day.
|Roughly, when are the hoplites said to have been founded?|
700BC. It may be argued that the hoplite officials were founded in the 5th century, due to the creation of the "300 Spartans", but the exact year the Spartans were founded is unknown. Historical records suggest that they appeared as early as about 700BC.
|The hoplites often carried a small, straight blade around 60cm long. What was this called?|
Xiphos. The Xiphos was a double-edged, single-hand sword that was only used by hoplites. The Spartan hoplites, however, are believed to have created a smaller sword, allowing greater mobility. It was about 30cm long, thus halving that of the Xiphos. It was unnamed but is believed just simply a more modern Xiphos. You may see Leonidas wielding a spartan Xiphos in the film "300 Spartans".
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