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Thread: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

  1. #701
    MathiasOfAthens's Avatar Praefectus Legionis
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

    Love to see how the campaign map has turned out in the preview. Good luck.

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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

    Quote Originally Posted by MathiasOfAthens View Post
    Love to see how the campaign map has turned out in the preview. Good luck.
    Wha? How? Huh? Who are you?

    ~Jirisys ()
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    Petroniu's Avatar Pili Prior
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

    Hopefully next week will be a more successful one for the preview chasers!
    Total War: Rome II - Sigh...

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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

    Here's something in the meanwhile:

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    Poor sod.

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    Basileos Antiokhos Euergetes's Avatar Pili Prior
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

    Brilliant !!

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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ

    seems the dev-team have fun with custom battles...

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    Default Preview 1: Hayastan



    Greetings Total War Fans!

    And:



    Happy (late) birthday AtB!

    It's been a while since our last official post, more than one year, to be precise; but it's not as if we have been slacking in a hammock all that time (maybe), we've actually been doing things; things such as models, textures, descriptions, concepts, concept art, 2D art, research, screenshots, among the other minor things we were doing, so we apologize for the lack of content we have shown.
    And since we wanted to repay the large time that we only did models, textures, descriptions, concepts, concept art, 2D art, research and screenshots; we have brought you something special. Special how you ask? A preview.

    But don't you think this was a small preview, no; not at all. It's very large, incredibly large, more than 20 pages of text split between two posts that contain both images and very informative information. So sit down, open this page, get some tea (or booze), watch a movie (or go for a drive to another town). And when you come back, hopefully all the text has loaded, and you can now easily read every single word in this post, which number more than five thousand. It is in fact, the reason why we have researched, written and delayed this preview for months, so you can read all of its grandiosity. Hopefully you will have finished before tomorrow night. It is split between two parts, the first (this one), the "Research" preview, and the second, the "Units" preview, which will be posted later on.

    This preview has been worked on for months, with an incredible amount of research that is not normally given to the preview of a video game modification. We are well aware that most of you will not read it completely (it's intimidatingly extensive); but we do hope that what you read can be a great source for new information, that you find it interesting and enjoyable; maybe even find a desire to read it all. Though all the descriptions, text, images, etc. is Work-in-Progress, and may change in time before being finally implemented.

    The units here will likely be overhauled and may be modified later on, more units will be added (especially since this is the early roster). The region borders may be altered and the names of various things might be changed, but we have tried to be as accurate as possible.

    Enjoy the many months of effort and dedication our members have put into this preview. Feedback and comments are greatly appreciated, and we thank your continued support of this great project, and with it, our members' work.

    The Asia ton Barbaron Team.

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    Also, click the symbol to see it in its full glory.





    Hayastan
    Armenia



    The eternal snow atop the great mountains of the north watches over your land silently, as a reminder to you, Ark'ay; that you must be ever vigilant of your kingdom as well. The mountains protect us, as they protected our fathers, and our fathers' fathers; from our enemies' incessant quest to grab hold of what is rightfully yours. It has been decades since such a great kingdom as this one has prospered for so many generations, since the first days of Parkastan.
    Yet, the age of the Parsikk' is over, and the relative peace that we had enjoyed with them for many decades died along them. The sons of Selewkos emerged from the smoke of death that plagued the land after the fall of Parkastan. We give them tribute to keep their armies away, and we too ask Nane for their timely destruction. Your grandfather valiantly fought to defend his lands from the greed of the Yoynk'; but it was futile. The armies of Antiok'os the Elder, father of their current king, named alike; were far too great in number and easily outmatched our own, so it's best for now that we give them coins and goods, so that they don't demand our heads instead. It's a constant war that is waged in silence, so be wary of your ancillaries, the Yoyn assassins are slippery.
    However, the kingdom of Selewkos is not the only irritating neighbour we have. The northern frontier is shared with the Virk', ruled by a decrepit man named P'arnavazi, a puppet of Antiok'os. His willingness to cooperate with the Yoyn king is something to be cautious about. His armies may be fighting the tribes to his east, yet his eyes are focused where his master's eyes are too. He is eager to march on our lands and sit on your throne; he should be mindful, however; that fighting tribesmen is not the same as fighting a proper army of a great kingdom.

    But the hills and mountains surround Hayastan as if they were enormous walls, gathering the lifeless bodies of those foolish enough to war against your realm. They protect the ample valleys that cover the fertile land of the Eraskh, blessed by Aramazd and Anahit. They provide with the wheat and barley and cereals for our breads and beers; such fields grow as far as the eye can see. And the mountains guard the foothills, where the plentiful cattle and flocks and steeds breed and multiply. The great city of Armavir, home of your family and the capital of Hayastan; it sits atop the bed of the Eraskh, bringer of life to the land of the sons of Hayastan.
    And south of the valleys and hills of Pok'r Hayk' and east of lake Van lies Tsop'k', where commerce thrives on the streets of the cities across the mountains. The largest city, Karkatiokert; marks the spring of the Tigris, the life bringer of Mesopotamia, the city is built at the feet of a mountain, it is no less impenetrable than the mountain itself. The land is filled with trade posts and roads and brings forth great revenue from taxes collected from trading the produce of the royal lands and the transactions of merchants and common men.
    And further to the east, in a place that is far from your home and your family; lies the land of Kommagene, land that belongs to the kingdom of Selewkos, and you Ark'ay; placed as its satrap. It is little more than a trade centre where caravans and merchants come to stop on their way to their destination. The men may be from Yoynastan and bow to Antiok'os before they bow to you, yet it is no less your land and your people to rule; as they were once your father's. Should we be attacked, the mighty Vahagn will bestow your armies much courage, so they may be able to stand ground and defend the southernmost lands, even in such an untenable position.

    Yet, our troubles with the Selewkyank' are also our armies to blame. Our infantry is no match against theirs, with properly armed men being scarce, itself a problem; and those few being no match to the Yoyn phalangites. We have started adopting foreign equipment and tactics, so that we may stand a chance in battle. But our cavalry is unsurpassed by any other army. The Yoynk' may have defeated the Parsik cavalry decades ago; but it was Alek'sandr who brought them victory. If they were to fight our cavalry with their own in equal footing, they will be mauled and routed. Our cavalry is the finest of the region.
    The large land owners compose the elite forces in your armies. And, while small in numbers; they will outmatch any enemies that stands in their path; even the oldest veterans of the armies of Antiok'os would be forced into a bloody stalemate if caught on equal footing. These men are your best swordsmen and cavalrymen. A select few of these, handpicked personally by you, Ark'ay; form your T'iknapah, sworn protectors of the crown holder and his offspring; they wear the finest of armour and weapons in the region, so you will be safe when you ride to battle.
    And while you are concerned with greater matters, the Zoravark' tend to your kingdom's borders. These generals, also chosen personally from your most trusted of acquaintances; are the owners of enormous lots filled with villages of peasants, from which they can even recruit a small army. In times of peace, they bring great amounts of tribute and it is said that they also greatly liven your feasts. In times of war they are charged with defending or delaying enemy invasions so that you can attack them on another front, or you may return in time to fend them off.

    But while Antiok'os may be plotting against you with his servants, and with our armies unsuited to fight his, let alone have enough forces to fend off his allies in the north who will support his cause; today, in these times of peace and prosperity; tend to your lands, to your people, to your allies, to your family and to your friends. There will be time to have thoughts of war, and enemies, and armies, and battles. And when that time comes, I am certain that Nane will bless you with victories, so you may subdue the enemies of the Eruandunik'.

    May Aramazd bless you, and your kingdom, Mets Ark'ay.



    History

    Introduction

    The land that would become Armenia was almost completely devoid of local historical records until later periods, but it was home to cultures and empires that would go into the annals of history, albeit mostly on the annals of the history of other nations. The archaeological record is the only local source where it is possible to study about the area itself. Apart from being lacking in historical records, the land of Armenia was also prone to be in the path or destination of many migrations and a variety of peoples, which makes tracing back the ethnicity of the Armenians that much harder.

    Around the 20th Century BCE., the Hittites migrated from north of the Caucasus mountain ranges into Anatolia. Their precise path from the northern Caucasus to what would be called Pok'r Hayk' (Lesser Armenia) is only speculative, but the path they took west of that area can easily be inferred with the cities they sacked along the way to Central Anatolia (Pulur, Maltepe, Kültepe etc.), which caused another migration from Anatolia to Greece and the Balkans.[1] Though this migration may not have been very important to the ethnogenesis of the Armenian people, it would be one of the first of the many attested migrations that Armenia witnessed during its history.

    The Assyrians called Phrygia and the Phrygians "Mushki", and tell of their arrival, coming from the "country of the Hittites" (Eastern Anatolia) to the valley of the Upper Euphrates, around the 12th Century BCE. After which, many proceeded to migrate eastward and merge with the local population of what would be Armenia and Sophene[2], some of that area was under Assyrian control at the time, so they went to war against the invaders, and they were partially repelled.
    A parallel account by Herodotos mentions a migration of the Bruges, a tribe in the southern Balkans, who were neighbours of the Makedonians; who moved into Anatolia, and after their settling changed their name to Phruges (Phrygians). He also calls the Armenians "settlers from Phrygia" in the next sentence[3][4].

    The last significant migration was that of the Kimmerians, who were an Iranian nomadic tribe whose original territory is debated. Though they weren't very influential in Armenian culture or language, they were certainly influential in their history, raiding the kingdom of Urartu (as well as several other Anatolian kingdoms), marking its decline, and allowing the Assyrians to expand their power even more, which led to the inevitable downfall of Urartu a few decades later.[2]

    Yet, migrations are nothing but the tip in the diverse history of the land of Armenia. From fierce tribes that sacked Hittite cities, to great kingdoms that brought Assyria to its knees; to the great kingdom that controlled all of Mesopotamia and the Levant, the same kingdom that kept the mighty Parthians at bay, something only the enormous Roman Empire would be able to accomplish. The history of Armenia is large and diverse, to embark on it is to embark on a journey through the centuries, albeit often told by the great and famous empires of old, an extraordinary journey nonetheless.

    Notes:
    [1]Mellaart, J. (1958). The End of the Early Bronze Age in Anatolia and the Aegean. American Journal of Archaeology, 62(1), 9-33.
    [2]Diakonov, I. (1984). The Formation of the Armenian People. In The Pre-history of the Armenian People. Caravan Books.
    [3]Herodotos, Histories, 7.73.
    [4]Although, to consider this more than a simplification can be problematic, though it does certainly support one of many theories on the formation of the Armenian language.

    Hayk

    Hayk is the mythical founder of Armenia (from whom the name of the region is supposedly taken), an extraordinary archer and king of Armenia itself. Although Hayk itself might have existed, and the events narrated could have happened (to an extent), there is little archaeological evidence to support it.
    His story is narrated in the 5th Century (though more realisticaly dated to the 8th or 9th Century) CE book "History of Armenia" (Patmut'yun Hayots') attributed to Movses Khorenats'i. This book is the earliest source that documents the story of Hayk, along with the "Kartli Chronicles" (K'art'lis Ts'xovreba) which was written between the 9th and 14th Century CE (the date of its writing is still debated) possibly written by Juansherani. The books state that Hayk was one of many giants[1] and a descendant of Noah through his son Japheth[2], most likely because of Christianisation of the old pagan legends.
    Both books tell of how Hayk rebelled against Bel[3], the giant who was king of the entire world, and faced him in very pitched battle. Hayk and his army of giants were at the foot of a hill[4]; and the giant king along with his own army of giants were at the top of said hill[4]. The armies faced at the foothills and after a long period of bloody stalemate, Bel went back to the top of the hill and was shot fatally by Hayk. The army of the giant king then routed upon his death and Hayk became king of Armenia.
    But while the Kartli Chronicles ceases to narrate the story of Hayk and moves on to the tale of K'art'los[5]; History of Armenia tells us that Hayk built a village where the battle was fought and named it Hayk'[6] and that Armenia's name is Hayk' because of its ancestor[6]. It then proceeds to narrate the life of his offspring and the remaining two millennia of Armenian history.

    Notes:
    [1]History of Armenia, 1.10; and Kartli Chronicles, 1.1.
    [2]History of Armenia, 1.5; and Kartli Chronicles, 1.1.
    [3]Named Bel in History of Armenia 1.10 and Nebrovt'/Nimrod in Kartli Chronicles 1.3. For continuity, we will call him Bel in this text.
    [4]Kartli Chronicles 1.3 specifies that this hill is Mount Masis (Ararat).
    [5]Brother of Hayk, mythical founder of K'art'li (Georgia).
    [6]Many scholars agree that Hayk' (the name of the region) couldn't possibly have evolved from Hayk (the name of the founder)[7]; rather, Hayk' is the nominative plural of "Hay" (Classical Armenian for "Armenian").
    [7]Khorenats'i, M. (Writer), & Thomson, R. (Translator). (1980). History of the Armenians (2nd Printing) (p. 88). London. Harvard University Press.

    Metsamor

    Metsamor is a Bronze Age fortified settlement dating prior to 3,000 BCE, located in the modern city of the same name; Metsam, Armenia. The archaeological evidence uncovered so far indicates a sophisticated society with an early writing system. Some characters of the inscriptions seem to correspond to letters of the Armenian script[1], and they could be similar to early Sumerian writing regarding taxes and other financial transactions. Other Bronze Age evidence from the Tsaghkahovit Plain in Armenia show a society quite advanced for the time, though a serious lack of excavation has yet to bring the majority of this civilization to light.

    Notes:
    [1]Khandjian, M. A. (1970). The Evolution of Armenian and World Alphabets. Beirut, Lebanon. Shirak Press.

    Mitanni

    The Kingdom of Mitanni was an enigmatic kingdom that existed between the 15th and 13th centuries BCE, known as "Hurri" by the Hittites, "Naharina" or "Naharin" by the Egyptians, and "Hanigalbat" by the Assyrians; it encompassed the lands south of Lake Van, southeastern Anatolia, northern Syria and northern Mesopotamia. The population of Mitanni was largely Hurrian, though many of the administrative texts of the kingdom were written in Babylonian. Mitanni was the most powerful state in the Near East for a short stretch of time during its existence, due to serious internal issues in the Hittite Empire as well as Assyria and Babylonia.[1] The lack of texts originating from the kingdom make it difficult to put together an absolute chronology of its history, but a general history can be ascertained from texts from their neighbours, such as the Egyptians, Hittites and Assyrians.

    Their formation coincides with the collapse of Babylon after the sack of the city by the Hittite king Mursili in the middle 16th Century BCE. By the time of the invasion of Syria by the Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III in the middle of the 15th Century BCE, Mitanni already had territories around Halab (Modern Aleppo) loyal to them (including the city itself)[2], which were sacked by the Egyptians, but most of them were not annexed, the army simply returned back to Egypt after making a stele in honour of the Pharaoh.[3] His son, Amenhotep II continued with two more campaigns in Syria in the late 15th Century BCE, the second one due to a large scale rebellion, where he was victorious both times. His records also indicate that the Mitanni asked for peace and gave tribute to the Pharaoh. His descendants, Thutmose IV and Amenhotep III both married Mitanni princesses in what appears to be signs of good relations. But before the Egyptian invasions and subsequent peace, the Mitanni king Shaushtatar turned his sight on the kingdom of Assyria, invading it and looting its capital city, Asshur.[4] The Hittites were also not spared, starting hostilities against king Arnuwanda I that lasted for several generations.[5]
    The kingdom of Mitanni had extensive techniques for training chariot horses, for which they were renowned, as they were one of the finest, owing to them their victories. The Hittites left behind copies of a guide written by Kikkuli, "master horse trainer of the land of Mitanni", which describes in full detail the steps and techniques for the adequate conditioning of a horse, several of which similar to those used in modern day.
    Akhenaten (also known as Amenhotep IV) succeeded Amenhotep III around 1350 BCE. and relations with the kingdom of Mitanni deteriorated, king Tushratta sent Akhenaten many complaints stating that the golden statues his father promised to send as prices for his royal marriage with the Mitanni were only covered in gold and were lacking the goods he was promised. At this time, the Hittites were extending their influence and power; so much so that the Hittite king Suppiluliuma I plundered the lands west of the Euphrates in the second half of the 14th Century BCE, signing a treaty with the Mitanni usurper Artatama II, the "king of the land of the Hurri".[5] Akhenaten was apathetic to the struggles of their northern lands against the Hittites, not giving support to revolts against the Hittites, who were desperately asking for aid, the Mitanni received the same treatment, as he saw the waning of their power. At this time, the Mitanni became embroiled in a dynastic struggle between Artatama and Tushratta, which would have severe consequences for the kingdom.

    After a few years, Suppiluliuma invaded again, claiming the conquest of rebel cities as his motive, he promptly subjugated them, but survivors fled to the city of Isuwa. A Hittite army invaded the lands around the city and returned the fugitives to their lands; then they proceeded to march towards Wassukanni, one of the capitals cities of Mitanni, plundering the land around it, but Tushratta managed to escape.[6] It soon followed yet another campaign by the Hittites, capturing several cities east of the Euphrates, but not marching into Mitanni territory[7]
    The political turmoil became more severe with the death of king Tushratta; his brother, Shattiwaza had to flee the kingdom when the son of Artamata II, Shuttarna III, tried to murder him; he sought refuge with Suppiluliuma and was married to his daughter.
    The Assyrian king Ashur-Ubalit I took advantage of the situation, declared independence and invaded Mitanni successfully, annexing some of its territory. The successor of Artamata II, Shuttarna III succeeded him, and he was able to maintain good relations with the Assyrians. This allowed him to convince them to send an army to defend Wassukanni from the Hittite invasion led by Shuttarna and Pyasshili (a son of Suppiluliuma) that defeated an army near Irridu and captured the city.[8] The people of Wassukanni were less than happy to allow that a former vassal rule them, so they denied entry to the Assyrian army, they proceeded to besiege the city. The Hittite army marched towards the capital, but the Assyrians were nowhere to be seen, so they claimed victory. Shattiwaza was crowned king and Mitanni became a Hittite vassal.[9]

    In reign of Shattuara, who ruled in the first half of the 13th Century BCE., Mitanni attacked the Assyrian kingdom without asking for Hittite help, only for the king to be captured and forced to plead loyalty to Adad-Nirari I, the king of Assyria, as a vassal of the Assyrian Kingdom; the Hittite king Mursili II received criticism for losing Mitanni control. Shattuara's son, Wasashata, revolted a few years later and asked for help from the Hittites, but Adad-Nirari devastated Mitanni and deported the king, his family, and his court to Asshur. Adad-nirari annexed and enslaved much of the kingdom of Mitanni, but his son and successor had to face one last revolt around 1270 BCE., now from Shattuara II, who enlisted the aid of the Hittites and the Ahlamu (Arameans), but they were crushed by the king Shalmaneser I, who managed to conquer the city of Irridu and Karkemish, as well as destroying many Mitanni cities, and effectively putting an end to the kingdom of Mitanni, now annexed to Assyria as Hanigalbat.[10]

    Notes:
    [1]Mieroop, M. V. D. (2007). A History of the Ancient Near East, ca. 3000-323 BC (pp. 150-155). Oxford. Blackwell Publishing.
    [2]Idrimi, The Idrimi Inscription.
    [3]Redford, D. (2003). The Wars in Syria and Palestine of Thutmose III (pp. 224-225). Leiden. Brill.
    [4]Bryce, T. (2003). Letters of the Great Kings of the Ancient Near East: The Royal Correspondence of the Late Bronze Age (p. 10). New York. Routledge.
    [5]Suppiluliuma-Shattiwaza Treaty. A Obv. 1-16.
    [6]Suppiluliuma-Shattiwaza Treaty. A Obv. 17-29.
    [7]Suppiluliuma-Shattiwaza Treaty. A Obv. 30-58.
    [8]Suppiluliuma-Shattiwaza Treaty. Beckman 6B Version. A Obv. 31-47.
    [9]Suppiluliuma-Shattiwaza Treaty. Beckman 6B Version. Hitt. 1-29.
    [10]J. Margaret, M. (2006). Assyrian Military Power. In The Cambridge Ancient History. (3 ed., Vol. II, Part. 2). Cambridge. Cambridge University Press.

    Hayasa-Azzi

    Hayasa-Azzi (or Hayasa) was a confederation of two tribal kingdoms that existed in the second half of 2nd millennium B.C. Not much is known about the structure of the kingdom or its language. What is known comes from scattered references to the country in Hittite annals, often causing trouble for the Hittite rulers. The name Hayasa corresponds to the modern term "Hayastan" used to refer to Armenia in the Armenian language, making Hayasa a popular choice for being the seminal proto-Armenian country. However, some scholars such as Igor Diakonov contest this hypothesis. It is usually accepted that it was the Mushki people, who migrated from Phrygia in the 12th century BCE into the Armenian Highlands, who introduced a version of Proto-Armenian and are the originators of the Indo-European speaking Armenians. How Hayasa could have been related is unclear, since the only knowledge of the Hayasan language comes from the names of a few kings in Hittite annals.[1] The Hayasa-Azzi controlled the lands in the upper Euphrates basin; though sometimes, a distinction is made between the Azzi and Hayasa, but for the purpose of this section, they will be considered a single entity.

    By the time of the reign of Tudhaliya II (or Tudhaliya III) in the middle 14th Century BCE., the Hittite kingdom was said to be "paralysed"[2], the capital, Hattusa, was sacked by the Kaskas, tribesmen from the Pontos; with the Hayasa advancing as far as Samuha[3]. But Tudhaliya began a joint campaign with his general (Suppiluliuma) to reconquer the land of the eastern bank of the Euphrates, from the city of Samuha, Tudhaliya and Suppiluliuma launched several attacks on Kaskas territory; the campaign was a complete success, the Hayasans refused to give battle to Hittite army several times.[4] But after a few battles, they descended on the land of the Hayasa, where the Hayasan king Karanni offered battle near the town of Kummaha.[5] Whether the Hittites won the battle or not is not clear, but it's safe to assume that they were victorious.

    In the reign of Suppiluliuma, the Hayasan ruler Hakkani married Suppiluliuma's sister, making the Hayasa a vassal state of the Hittites. In accordance to the terms of the treaty, Hakkani had to release all Hittite prisoniers, cede territory that Suppiluliuma claimed for his kingdom[6], as well as fulfil certain clauses regarding the lack of punishment against the perceived incest within the ruler's family[7].

    The peace between both realms was short lived, as hostilities resumed soon after, around the late 14th Century. In the seventh year of Mursili II's reign, the Hayasa, now ruled by a man named Anniya; raided the land of Dankuwa and took prisoners and livestock to Hayasan lands; Mursili promtply responded and attacked the Hayasan border city of Ura.[8] The next year, Mursili managed to conquer an unnamed city (possibly Ura) and gave the same treatment to the citizens and livestock that the Hayasans gave to his.[9]
    After the Hayasans failed to deliver a promise of the return of Hittite prisoners to their own land, claiming that the Hittites did not compensate them for the Hayasan prisoners they took, nor for the Hittite prisoners they wanted to be released; Mursili had to attend other matters in Kummanni and ceased campaigning against the Hayasa. They were quick to take advantage of the situation, destroying the city of Istitina and sieging the city of Kannuwara before the Hitties could respond. Although there was an army ready to combat this threat, Mursili's general, Nuwanza, had waited until he received good omens before engaging the Hayasan army, which he promptly defeated once Mursili sent him good omens.[10]
    After a short period of warring against other states, Mursili turned his sight on the Hayasa again, launching a quick expedition to the city of Aripsa, located on the mountaintop, seemingly impenetrable; but Mursili managed to capture it, along with considerably bounty. After this, he descended on the city of Dukkamma, but the citizens were quick to surrender to him after seeing their impenetrable fortress so quickly captured, asking for peaceful subjugation instead, promising to serve his army and release his prisoners; Mursili obliged and quickly parted to Hattusa after he made the Hayasa swear an oath to him.[11]
    After this, in his eleventh year of reign, he went to Hayasa again, only to be greeted by a man from Halimana called Mutti, who could have been the new ruler after Anniya's defeat, but this is only speculation. He offered vassalage to the Hittite king, and released 1000 Hittite prisoners, pleased with this, Mursili made them a vassal state once more.[11] This is the last known historical text where the Hayasa appear, before likely succumbing to the Bronze Age collapse, dissolving into smaller separate tribes, or simply merging with the Balkan invaders.

    Notes:
    [1]Diakonov, I. (1984). The Pre-history of the Armenian People (pp. 45-57). Caravan Books.
    [2]Amarna Letters. Letter 31.
    [3]Bryce, T. (1999). The Kingdom of the Hittites (p. 149). New York. Oxford University Press.
    [4]Mursili II, The Deeds of Suppiluliuma. Fragment 10.
    [5]Mursili II, The Deeds of Suppiluliuma. Fragment 13.
    [6]Bryce, T. (1999). The Kingdom of the Hittites (p. 150). New York. Oxford University Press.
    [7]Mazoyer, M. (2005). Sexualité et Barbarie chez les Hittites. In Barbares et Civilisés dans l'Antiquité. L'Harmattan.
    [8]Mursili II, Ten Year Annals. Year Seven, Extended Annals.
    [9]Mursili II, Ten Year Annals. Year Eight, Extended Annals.
    [10]Mursili II, Ten Year Annals. Year Nine, Extended Annals.
    [11]Mursili II, Ten Year Annals. Year Ten, Extended Annals.
    [11]Mursili II, Ten Year Annals. Year Eleven, Extended Annals.

    Nairi

    Nairi was a confederation of states that existed in the late 2nd millennium B.C. Another state in the vicinity was known as Uruatri. Records from these time periods have not as of yet been uncovered, though they were clearly fiercely independent politically and caused much trouble on the northern frontier of the Assyrian Empire. Around the late 9th, early 8th centuries, Nairi and Uruatri politically united to form the more powerful kingdom of Urartu.[1]

    Although sources are extremely scarce for Nairi, one of the earliest references to Nairi comes from a tablet in Asshur that details the import of 128 horses from Nairi to Assyria by a man named Marduk-ketti-e-tamsi.
    However, the first military source for area around Nairi (coincidentally, the predecessors of the Urartu) comes from the king Shalmaneser I in the first half of the 13th Century BCE., who accuses the land of Uruatri of rebellion, even though there are no references in previous inscriptions about them; quickly conquering its eight lands, sacking their towns, imposed tributes and brought prisoners back to Asshur.[2]
    But the first Assyrian king that left records of Nairi proper (due to an invasion, no less) was the king Tukulti-Ninurta I in the latter half of the 13th Century BCE. We learn from one of his inscriptions of the troubles he had to face to traverse into Nairi lands through poor roads and high mountains, the first time an Assyrian king managed to do so. Forty kings opposed him in battle, but they were defeated and brought back to Asshur; though they were released as vassals later. Tikulti-Ninurta called himself the "King of the Nairi lands"; although peaceful subjugation rarely lasted much time when the Assyrians or Hittites were involved, the Nairi seemed to have been content with the agreement for quite a long time.[2]
    But, as it would be easy to predict (yet almost a century and a half later), Tiglath-Pileser I also invaded the lands of Nairi, crossing the Euphrates river and many high mountains before reaching Nairi. He tells us that twenty three kings offered battle, but in which they were defeated, and sixty kings were captured. He pursued the remaining Nairi kings (and those of their allies) up to the Upper Sea (this could refer to Lake Van, Lake Urmia[2] or even Lake Sevan or the Black Sea) and conquered many cities[3]; pillaging the countryside in the pursuit, he finally manage to capture them after some time, forced them to swear an oath of vassalage, and took their sons as hostages. But the king of the Daiaeni, a man called Sieni, refused to submit to Tiglath-Pileser, he promptly brought him captive to Asshur, but he was ultimately sent back to Daiaeni, bringing an end to his campaign against the Nairi.[4]

    The last appearance of the Nairi comes from many inscriptions from the reign of Assur-nasir-pal II in the early 9th Century BCE. Although lacking in detail, he nevertheless claims to have conquered the land of Nairi[5][6][7][10] and the land of Urarti[8][9][10]. At around this time, the Nairi, Urarti and other cities merged under Arame or Sardur and formed what is known as the Kingdom of Urartu, which would become a powerful kingdom that would challenge previously unabated Assyrian aggression in the area.

    Notes:
    [1]Mieroop, M. V. D. (2007). A History of the Ancient Near East, ca. 3000-323 BC (p. 217). Oxford. Blackwell Publishing.
    [2]J. Margaret, M. (2006). Assyrian Military Power. In The Cambridge Ancient History. (3 ed., Vol. II, Part. 2). Cambridge. Cambridge University Press.
    [3]Tiglath-Pileser, Cylinder Inscription fron Kalat Sherkat, Column IV.
    [4]Tiglath-Pileser, Cylinder Inscription fron Kalat Sherkat, Column V.
    [5]Ashur-nasir-pal II, Inscription upon a Limestone Tablet Recording the Restoration of the Temple of Ishtar, the Queen of Kidmuri. Obverse.
    [6]Ashur-nasir-pal II, Inscription from the Temple of Mahir in the City of Imgur-Bel. Reverse.
    [7]Ashur-nasir-pal II, Inscription upon a Limestone Tablet Recording the Building of Ashur-nasir-pal's Palace in Kalhu. Reverse.
    [8]Ashur-nasir-pal II, Inscription upon Collosal Bulls and Lions, Recording Ashur-nasir-pal's Expedition to the Mediterranean Coast. Column II.
    [9]Ashur-nasir-pal II. The "Standard Inscription" of Ashur-nasir-pal.
    [10]To name a few.

    The Mushki

    The Mushki tribe is an obscure tribe (or group of tribes) that arrived into the eastern Euphrates basin in the 12th Century BCE. Though some Kartvelian tribes bear similar names, they are usually not associated with the Anatolian Mushki, and there are several that make it quite complicated to portray an accurate picture of the Mushki.[1]

    One of the first sources that mention the Mushki us the Cylinder Insciption of Tiglath-Pileser I at the end of the 12th Century BCE, he recounts that in his early reign, twenty thousand Mushki who had been living in the land of Alzi and Purukuzzi without sending tribute to the king, invaded the land of Kummuhi, but Tiglath-Pileser defeated them with an army of his own, captured much loot from the tribesmen, and brought back many of them to "his land" as inhabitants[2]; subjugating the lands of Alzi and Purukuzzi and imposing yearly tribute[3]. At the same time, a tribe known as the Kaski (some state these are the same Kaskas that raided the Hittites along with the Hayasa) and another known as Urumi (some equate them to Hurrians) invaded the land of Shubarti, but they did not battle with the Assyrians, and seemed to have pledged alliegance to the king, so they were taken to "his land" as inhabitants.[4]
    Although there are other later inscriptions regarding the Mushki, this one is very important, as it states that they had arrived to the land that would be called Kommagene already by the middle of the 12th Century BCE. Although they could not penetrate into Syria or Mesopotamia due to the strong Assyrian presence, Armenia had no large and powerful empire that could halt their advance, so they likely entered into Armenian lands and merged with the local population.[1]
    After this, the Mushki are not mentioned again until three hundred years laters, in an inscription by Iriris, king of Karkemish, where he mentions the Musa, the Muska and the Sura, which are stated to be the Phrygians (through the Mysians), the eastern Mushki and the Arameans, respectively.
    The next records of the Mushki come the reign of Sargon II of Assyria in the late 8th Century BCE., who records an joint attack from Mita, the king of the Mushki[5]; and Urzaha (Rusa I), king of Urartu. The war was short lived, and quickly Sargon sieged and destroyed 55 Urartian towns, capturing the 22 towns that were given to Rusa by the former vassal of Assyria, later besieging Musasir, an ally of Urartu, capturing it and taking the king's family, treasure and many idols from the local temples. Mita, on the other hand, was defeated by one of Sargon's generals, laying waste to many towns, and capturing thousands of prisoners, making Mita submit to the Assyrian king.[6] Although the Assyrians call them "Mushki", they are undoubtedly refering to the Phrygians, and not the Mushki that settled Alzi.[1]
    In later periods, several tribes bearing similar names to the Mushki appeared, one of the most prominent is the Moschoi of Greek authors, although they cannot be connected to the same Mushki of Tiglath-Pileser, much less the Phrygian Mushki of Sargon. Herodotos puts the Moschoi in the nineteenth administrative province of Persia, along with other tribes such as the Macrones and the Mossynokoi[7], who dwell near the coast of the Black Sea, around the area of Colchis and Pontos.

    Yet, since it is made clear that the Mushki of Sargon (and it could also include the Mushki of Tiglath-Pileser) refer to the Phrygians (although it could also encompass many other tribes as well), we can focus our atention to some of the Greek sources that speak of Phrygia. The passage by Herodotos already mentioned tells us that, according to the Makedonians, the Bruges (or Bryges) were a tribe that dwelled next to the Makedonians, but they migrated into Asia and "changed their name" to Phruges (Phryges, Phrygians), and that the Armenians were "settlers from Phrygia".[9] However, in a previous section, he claims that the Mysians and Teucrians crossed into Europe, vanquishing the Thracians, reaching the Ionian Sea and going as far south as the river Peneios, which flows through Thessaly[10][11], but the question of the Mysian language is not of interest as of now.
    We also know from Stephanos of Byzantion that a certain Eudoxos (likely the historian from Rhodes) spoke on how Armenian sounded very similar to Phrygian, while also confirming the passage of Herodotos stating that the Armenians were "settlers from Phrygia".[12] While Strabo also confirms that the Phrygians were once Brygian and had "utterly quit Europe"[13], and that the Bryges and Phryges were the same people[14].

    It is not a certainty that speakers of Proto-Armenian were Phrygian, nor that they arrived with them to Armenia, as there are some theories that postulate that Proto-Armenian had always been spoken in Armenia; yet, whether Proto-Armenian speakers migrated into Anatolia and Greece, or the opposite, one thing is certain, historical accounts show many similarities between the Phrygian and Armenian languages, and they assert that there was a relation between both peoples, one that does support the theory that that the Proto-Armenian speakers came with the Mushki invaders, yet there is no conclusive evidence to assert this as a historical fact.

    Notes:
    [1]Diakonov, I. (1984). The Formation of the Armenian People. In The Pre-history of the Armenian People. Caravan Books.
    [2]Tiglath-Pileser, Cylinder Inscription fron Kalat Sherkat, Column I.
    [3]Tiglath-Pileser, Cylinder Inscription fron Kalat Sherkat, Column II.
    [4]Tiglath-Pileser, Cylinder Inscription fron Kalat Sherkat, Column III.
    [5]Midas, king of the Phrygians.
    [6]Sargon II, Great Inscription of the Palace of Khorsabad.
    [8]Herodotos, Histories, 3.94.2.
    [9]Herodotos, Histories, 7.73.
    [10]Herodotos, Histories, 7.20.
    [11]While he doesn't give out the dates for the Brygian migration, he does state that the Mysians invaded before the Trojan War, which was around the 13th Century BCE. So it could be possible that the Mysians triggered, or simply predated the Brygian migration, though this is only speculation, and it could be the other way around just as easily.
    [12]Stephanos of Byzantion, Ethnika, Dictionary Entry for Armenia.
    [13]Strabo, Geographika, 7.3.2.
    [14]Strabo, Geographika, 12.3.20.

    Urartu

    Urartu was the kingdom forged from the loose confederation of Nairi and Uruatri (the division between Nairi and Uruatri is unclear). One of the most powerful kingdoms in the Near East for almost a century until the late 700s BCE., Urartu was also one of the most enigmatic. Urartians shared a linguistic and probably ethnic background with the Hurrians who dominated Mitanni in previous centuries. The name Urartu corresponds to the "land of Ararat" in the Bible, and is where the name of Mount Ararat originates. The head of the Urartian pantheon was named Khaldi (or Haldi), who had his main temple located in Musasir (a vassal kingdom) near Lake Urmia.[1]

    The kingdom of Urartu was united by either Arame (or Aram)[2] I around 850 BCE or by Sarduri I, son of Lutipris, around 830 BCE; but much of the early formation of Urartu is a mistery. In any case, the successor of Sarduri I, Ishpuini (828 BC–810 BCE.), moved the capital of the kingdom to the city of Tushpa (modern Van), and took control of the city of Musasir, and placed a temple of Khaldi in it; he recorded this in a bilingual stele found in the village of Kelashin, he calls himself "King of the Nairi" in the Assyrian inscription, while in the Urartian one, he calls himself "King of the Biaina", Biana being the Urartian name for Urartians themselves. He was followed by his son Menua (810 BC–785 BCE.), who greatly expanded the kingdom, almost doubling its size, and greatly reinforcing fortresses with stone walls and making large cannals throughout the kingdom.[4] His successor, Urartian King Argishti I (785-763 BCE.) brought Assyria to its knees, constantly defeating them and sacking and annexing their lands, destroying cities, annhilating their armies, taking thousands of livestock and prisoners back to Urartu. He was a prominent builder, founding many cities and reinforcing many others, notably founding Erebuni during his reign, which is now Yerevan, Armenia's modern capital. His son, Sarduri II (763 BC–735 BCE.) was the king at the peak of Urartian power, and continued with his father's continuous victories against the Assyrians.[4]
    However, their golden age would come to a sudden halt. The Cimmerian invasion, combined with the Assyrian sack of Musasir's great Temple of Khaldi in the vicinity of Lake Urmia, broke Urartu's power in 714, causing the suicide of the King Rusa I. The capital, Tushpa, held out against the Assyrian assault and Urartu experienced a short renaissance following the strong leadership of Rusa's successors, Argishti II (714-680 BCE.) and Rusa II (680-639 BCE.), who drove the Assyrians out of antebellum Urartian controlled regions. The temple of Khaldi was of critical importance to the psyche of Urartu, and it was only restored following Argishti II's recapture.[1]
    Following the reign of these kings, Urartu experienced a swift decline in the reigns of Rusa III, Sarduri IV and Rusa IV, marked by a series of constant defeats against Assyrian, Medes and Scythians; and was made part of the Median Empire by 585 B.C. The Urartian legacy lives on in their excavated citadels, records, and a few words in the Armenian language. By the time of the Behistun Inscription in Persia, the term Urartu had been translated into Old Persian as "Armina"; and a very different kingdom would soon rise from the vacuum left by the Urartu.[1]

    Notes:
    [1]Mieroop, M. V. D. (2007). A History of the Ancient Near East, ca. 3000-323 BC (pp. 211-218). Oxford. Blackwell Publishing.
    [2]Movses Khorenats'i, History of Armenia, 1.14-15.
    [3]Ishpuini, Kelishin Stele.
    [4]Chahin, M. (2001). The Kingdom of Armenia: A History (pp. 68-110). London. Routledgecurzon Press.

    The Orontids

    The history of the Orontids is a vague one. Following the fall of Urartu, Armenia was made part of the Median Empire and subsequently became a satrapy of the Persian Empire. The origins of the Orontids, much like that of Armenians themselves, are unclear. They may have been Persians or Baktrians, but they could have also been members of the local Armenian aristocracy promoted to the rank of satrap. The earliest king of Armenia known by sources other than Movses Khorenats'i is a certain Tigranes, whom Cyrus was well acquainted with, as they had gone hunting together before. He was the son of an Armenian king that was attacked by Cyrus for not paying his tribute.[2][3] Though Armenia under the Persians would not be involved in much turmoil; a short rebellion was quelled in 521 BCE by a man named Vaumisa.
    The Orontid dynasty truly begins with Eruand I (401–344 BCE.), the first historical Orontid, and son of Artasyrus. He was married to the daughter of Artaxerxes II, Rhodogune. Early in his reign, he supported the king Artaxerxes II against Cyrus the Younger (and Xenophon's 10000 Greeks) in the Persian civil war. Luckily for him, Artaxerxes was victorious, and he consolidated himself as the satrap of Matiene, Sophene and Armenia, with the king's approval. Later he would be moved to Mysia by the king Artaxerxes III, but he rebelled, and was named leader of an on-going revolt of Anatolian satraps, though he ended up betraying them and collapsing the rebellion (most of the satraps were pardoned, however); thanks to this, the Persian monarch promptly gave him control over much of Anatolia, who ruled for twenty more years.[4]
    His son, Eruand (the second) was his successor as the satrap of Armenia, though not much is known about his rule, he was the commander of the Armenian forces in the Battle of Gaugamela; he apparently lost his life in the ensuing defeat, and was succeeded by his son Mihram.[4]
    Mithram was a general in Sardis who defected to Alexander, and fought the forces of Darius III and his father in the Battle of Gaugamela. After his father's death, Mihram was sent to Armenia as satrap by Alexander.[4]

    Following Alexander the Great's conquest of Persia, the Orontids found themselves in charge of Armenia as independent monarchs. Hellenistic culture quickly penetrated into the Orontid rulers, who began to mint coins with Greek legends. Politically, the Orontids dealt with hostility, but also supplication, with the massive Seleukid Empire to their South. Records from this period do not survive in Armenia, and Seleukid accounts of Orontid rulers are most probably biased and are certainly incomplete.[1]
    Armenia was only a witness to the wars of the Diadochi, with the only all-out war happening against the Seleukid Empire, who attacked Sophene in 272 BCE., in the reign of Eruand III (321-260 BCE.), he was promptly defeated, but he was able to keep ruling Sophene and Armenia.[5] His son, Shamush, was the first Orontid satrap of Kommagene. He founded the city of Shamushat, the new (or first) capital of Kommagene, and died in 260 BCE., in the same year that his father did, leaving the throne of the two kingdoms and satrapy to his son, Arsham I.[5]
    The reign of Arsham lasted until the 230's BCE. Notably, he founded the city of Arshamshat, and made it the capital of Sophene (the former capital was Karkatiokert). He gave asylum to Ziaelas, who was fighting for the throne of Bythinia, usurped by his mother. He also supported Antiochos Hierax in the Seleukid civil war; although Antiochos was later defeated, Arsham kept ruling the three regions of his realm until his death. His son Xerxes (K'serk'ses) ruled over Sophene and Kommagene, while his other son, Eruand IV, ruled over Armenia.[5]

    Xerxes (c. 230-210 BCE.) was the target of the campaigns for the consolidation of the Seleukid Empire by the king Antiochos III (The Great), he invaded the lands of the Armenian king and laid siege to Arshamshat. He asked for peace and Antiochos accepted; Xerxes had to pay a tribute of 300 talents of silver and 1000 horses and 1000 mules, and was married to Antiochos' sister, Antiochis.[6] He was assassinated shortly after by his wife, and the satrapy of Kommagene was apparently lost by the Orontid king's death; as his son, Abdissares (c. 210-200 BCE.), only controlled the kingdom of Sophene. He doesn't appear on any sources, and the only evidence of his reign is attested through numismatics, he was the last Orontid king of Sophene.[5]
    On the other line of the family, Eruand IV (c. 230-200 BCE.) became the king of Armenia. Most notably, he founded the city of Eruandashat, and made it the new capital, as Armavir, the former capital; had been affected by the change of course of the river Araxes. He also founded the holy site of Bagaran, where many statues and temples of syncretic Armeno-Greek gods were set up. He was the last king of Armenia, and was defeated by two Seleukid-appointed generals, who would form an Armenian dynasty of their own.[5]
    In 163 BCE., after 40 years of ruling as satrap, Ptolemaios of Kommagene proclaimed himself king of the newly independent kingdom of Kommagene. However, cultural Armenian traits would still be prevalent in the region for many decades, nonetheless. This kingdom would last until it was dissolute by the Romans in 72 CE. The only remainder of the Orontid dynasty were the kings of Kommagene, yet it is possible they were not truly the descendants of Eruand I, as they claim to be.[1]

    Notes:
    [1]Chahin, M. (2001). The Kingdom of Armenia: A History (pp. 185-192). London. Routledgecurzon Press.
    [2]Xenophon, Cyropaedia, 3.1.7.
    [3]Whether he is the Tigran that Khorenatsi mentions is not certain, and the historicity of Cyropaedia has always been up for debate. It could also be that he was not a member of the dynasty.
    [4]Lang, D. M. (1983). Iran, Armenia and Georgia: Political Contacts. In the Cambridge History of Iran (vol. 3). Cambridge. Cambridge University Press.
    [5]Hovannisian, R. G. (1997). The Armenian People from Ancient to Modern Times. New York. St. Martin's Press.
    [6]Polybios, The Histories, 8.25.

    Artashes, Zareh, and their successors

    Antiochos the Great wanted to take control of Armenia and Sophene, lands that had been in Orontid control for several centuries; so he instigated a rebellion against Eruand IV. Artashes was able to defeat him and take control of Armenia, while his father, Zareh, took control of Sophene, all of this for the name of the Seleukid king. Artashes claims to have been a member of the Orontid dynasty in several epigraphic inscriptions, and that Eruand IV was killed by his own army, which supports the hypothesis that Artashes and Zareh betrayed the Orontid kingdom in exchange for power from the Seleukids. But, after his defeat in the Battle of Magnesia against the Romans, both rulers proclaimed independence from the Seleukid Empire and formed dynasties of their own.[1]

    King Artashes (189-150 BCE.) was a strong ruler who was able to expand the boundaries of his kingdom into Atropatene and founded the city of Artashat (allegedly with the aid of Hannibal Barca) as Armenia's new capital. At the same time, Zareh established himself in Sophene, though with little to note about his reign. Artashes' successor, Artavazd (160-115 B.C.), launched campaigns into Kartli and established an Artashesian branch as kings there. Parthian attacks intensified, forcing Artavazd to give up his son Tigran (who would later become Tigran II) as a hostage, as well as parts of Atropatene. His brother, Tigran I (115-95 B.C.) succeeded the throne and his reign was largely uneventful.[1]

    In the year 95 BCE., on Tigran I's death, Tigranes II was released from Parthia and became the new Armenian king. He quickly incorporated all Armenian speaking regions into his kingdom (the kingdom of Sophene ruled by Zareh's descendants included) and conquered Northern Mesopotamia from Parthia. Due to the instability and weakness of the rump Seleukid Empire, Tigran II was able to take advantage, annexing Syria and the Levant for his own kingdom. For a short time during Tigran II's reign, Armenia was the strongest kingdom in the Near East. Although that would quickly change with the meddling of the Romans in Asia; Armenia would ultimately be reduced to a buffer state, and a vassal, either of the Romans, or the Parthians, for several centuries.[1]

    Notes:
    [1]Chahin, M. (2001). The Kingdom of Armenia: A History (pp. 193-215). London. Routledgecurzon Press.



    Religion

    The Armenian religion is composed of a mix of nature worship, hero worship, and a pantheon of many gods. Most of these gods were originally Urartian, but were later influenced heavily by the gods of the Anatolians, Mesopotamians and the Hellenes. Though the main and earlier sources for the Armenian pantheon are from the 5th Century CE and beyond, therefore, they might not portray an accurate picture for early Hellenistic times.

    The Urartians had a supreme god named Khaldi and at his side were Theisheba, a weather god; and Shivini, a sun god. As well as around forty-six other secondary deities named in an official list of gods, none of them female. This divine triad was in fact, influenced by the Mesopotamian gods Sin, Adad and Shamash; respectively.[1] With the penetration of the Persian culture, Ahuramazda was adopted as the main god of the Armenian pantheon with the name of Aramazd; although he was not the only god in the pantheon, unlike Ahuramazda. The Armenians would later go on and adopt the triad system for their own gods, placing Aramazd at the top.

    Although documents on the religion of Orontid Hayastan are few, and most of the information on their religion are from later periods; temples and inscriptions are where the nature of the gods are attested from. One of the earliest (around the year 50 BCE.) evidence for the syncretism present in the Armenian religion is the large statues at Mount Nemrut, in Kommagene, who present Greek, Armenian and Iranian characteristics.

    Nature worship

    The worship of the sun was narrated by Xenophon in Anabasis: "Then Xenophon took the village chief back for the time to his [the chief's] own household, and gave him [the chief] a horse that he [Xenophon] had got when it was rather old, to fatten up and sacrifice, for he [Xenophon] understood that it was sacred to the Sun-god"[2]. Tacitus relates on how, in the Arshakid dynasty of Armenia, horses were sacrificed to the Euphrates to "placate the river", and made predictions from its foam.[3]

    The Armenians also had sacred fires made from the burning of oak trees. Although the practice likely preceded that of Zoroastrianism, the fire was often theomorphised as a female deity, much like the Skythian goddess named Iesta.[1] Movses Khorenats'i also mentions that an Arshakid king, Artashir, ordered the fire of Ormizd, which was on the altar of Bagavan, to be kept perpetually burning.[4]

    Pantheon

    Aramazd
    The main god of the Armenian pantheon, the equivalent of the Zoroastrian Ahura Mazda; he is the god creator of the heavens and Earth, father of all deities, and also of the fertility of the land, often associated with the Greek god Zeus.[5][6] His main cult site was Ani-Kamakh, capital of the kingdom of Pok'r Hayk' (Lesser Armenia).[5] Together with Anahit and Vahagn, they form the divine triad of the Armenian gods.

    Anahit
    The main goddess of the Armenian pantheon, likely the equivalent of the Indo-Iranian Anahita[7]; she is the goddess of fertility, of birth, saviour and protector of the Armenians, also referred to as the "Golden Mother" after a golden statue of her.[8][5] Her main altars were located in Armavir, Artashat and Erez (modern Erzincan).[6] The temple of Erez contained a famed golden statue of the goddess that was captured and torn to pieces by the soldiers of Mark Anthony; the statue was replaced by the time of Gregory the Illuminator, who destroyed it again.[9][5] Together with Aramazd and Vahagn, they form the divine triad of the Armenian gods.

    Vahagn

    Vahagn is the god of war, victory and courage; though, in earlier period, he was the god of fire.[5][10] His Greek equivalent is Herakles.[5][6][10] Called "Vishap-handler" (Vishapak'ałn)[5][11], his temple was located in the town of Ashtishat, it had many riches of gold and silver, and many great kings presented offerings to him.[5] In his temple, there was also an altar for Anahit, and another for Astłik, his wife or concubine.[5] Together with Aramazd and Anahit, they form the divine triad of the Armenian gods.

    Other gods

    Nane
    Nane is the daughter of Aramazd, the Armenian goddess of war, and wisdom.[10] After the Hellenisation of Armenia, she was identified with Athena, her Greek counterpart.[5][10] Her main temple was located in the town of T'il (or Thil), destroyed by Gregory the Illuminator as part of the Christianisation of Armenia.[5]

    Astłik
    Astłik (or Astghik) is the goddess of love, beauty and fertility.[10] She is the "beloved" or "concubine" of Vahagn.[6][5] Her sanctuary is shared with that of her lover, in the town of Ashtishat.[5] She is the equivalent of the Greek goddess Aphrodite.[6][10]

    Tir
    Tir (or Tiur) was the god of learning and teaching, the master teacher of the wisdom of the priests, the scribe of Aramazd, compared to the Greek god Apollo. His temples were located in Artashat and Armavir.[5][6][10]

    Notes:
    [1]Ananikia, M. (1925). Armenian Mythology. In The Mythology of All Races (Vol. 7). Marshall Jones Company.
    [2]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.35.
    [3]Tacitus, Annals, 6.37.
    [4]Movses Khorenats'i, History of Armenia, 2.77.
    [5]Agathangelos, History of the Armenians.
    [6]Movses Khorenats'i, History of Armenia.
    [7]Whether Anahit was imported from the Iranian goddess Anahita (or the opposite, or even independent) is not clear.
    [8]Hastings, J. (1908). Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics (vol. 1). Edinburgh, Scotland. T&T Clark.
    [9]Pliny the Elder, Natural History, 33.24.
    [10]Ouzounian, N. (2000). The Heritage of Armenian Literature: From the Oral Tradition to the Golden Age. Detroit, Michigan. Wayne State University Press.
    [11]Vishaps originally were a sort of water demon or water spirit, who were represented in Menhirs that were placed near water sources or lakes before the Urartian era. Later they were associated with dragons, though mantaining their previous relation with water.



    Language

    The origins of the Armenian Language are as obscure as the ethnogenesis of the Armenian people. In its early stages, the Armenian was a mix of Proto-Armenian and Hurro-Urartian (the latter to a lesser extent), as well as many borrowings of Aramaic, Luwian, Akkadian, Old Persian and Greek[2].

    But the origin of the language itself is unclear, as the first document written in Armenian was the Bible, translated of Mesrop Mashtots in the 5th Century CE.; though it's safe to say that it was already spoken in the Hellenistic period.

    One theory is that the speakers of Proto-Armenian (What would be the foundation of the Armenian language) were part of a larger group that contained both Proto-Armenian speakers and Proto-Hellenic speakers who separated and formed the Armenian and Hellenic languages respectively. But there is also another theory which says that the Proto-Armenian speakers were part of a group of both Proto-Hellenic and Proto-Aryan (Proto-Indo-Iranian) speakers; and even another one which joins Proto-Albanians along with the Proto-Hellenic and Proto-Armenian speakers. Tracing the origin of the Armenian language is very difficult and its origins are still debated to this day.

    Greek and, to a lesser extent; Aramaic were the official administrative languages of Armenia. Coins were printed with Hellenic legends, motifs and Hellenised names. Though the natives spoke a language different from both Hellenic and Persian; Armenian proper[1]. In later periods, Armenian borrowed many words and titles from Parthian and Middle Persian, titles such as "Nakharar" and "Sparapet", which were used prominently in the Arshakid period.

    Technical Details and Phonology

    Plurals forms of nouns were formed by adding a ք (k') at the end of them. Ark'ay (king) becomes Ark'ayk' (kings). But in irregular nouns, though the ք (k') remained at the end of words most of the time, the word is altered. A good example is the word ayr (man), which is pluralized as ark' (men) instead of ayrk'.

    The Armenian language has had very few phoneme changes (changes in pronunciation) from Grabar (Classical Armenian, the language we used for the many Armenian words present in our texts) to Eastern Armenian.

    There are only two major (possible) phoneme changes:
    Ղ/ղ was pronounced as the l in the English word Peel (in an American accent)[3], now pronounced as a French guttural r, like the first r in the word Rester. Transliterated in Grabar as Ł/ł.
    Ր/ր which was pronounced as the r in the English word Red, now pronounced as the r in the Spanish word Hora. Transliterated in Grabar as R/r.

    While it is historically problematic that our Armenian words come from the transliteration of written Armenian, which was created in the 5th Century CE. But we have tried to use words whose etymological origin precedes Parthian and Middle Persian roots so that the words are more historically accurate (to an extent).

    Although many Armenian phonemes are spoken in the English language, there are many cases where they don't exist in English, some also only exist in romance languages (Spanish, French, Italian etc.); and a few don't exist in either (e.g. Չ/չ).

    Vowels:
    [4]Ա/ա, Ի/ի and Ո/ո are transliterated a, i and o[5] respectively[6]. There are three "e-sounding" vowels in Armenian: Ե/ե[7], Է/է and Ը/ը[8], transliterated as e, e and ë respectively. Ու/ու is a digraph (two characters that, when united, represent a single sound) which transliterates to u[9].

    Consonants:
    [4]Բ/բ, Գ/գ, Դ/դ, Զ/զ, Լ/լ, Հ/հ, Մ/մ, Ն/ն, Ս/ս and Վ/վ are transliterated as b, g, d, z, l, h, m, n, s and v respectively, and their sounds are very common in English and many romance languages[10].
    But special attention is needed to several pairs of letters. Թ/թ and Տ/տ, Ք/ք and Կ/կ, Փ/փ and Պ/պ, Ց/ց and Ծ/ծ and Չ/չ and Ճ/ճ (transliterated as t' and t, k' and k, p' and p, ts' and ts and ch' and ch). The first letter of each pair corresponds to an aspirated (strong burst of air released when pronounced) consonant, and the second letter is the unaspirated consonant[11]. E.g. The t in the English word Take is aspirated (strong burst of air released), while the t in the English word Stack is not.
    There is also the case of Ժ/ժ, Ձ/ձ, Շ/շ, Ռ/ռ and Խ/խ (as well as Ց/ց, Ծ/ծ, Չ/չ and Ճ/ճ; but their phonology has already been discussed, yet; they still are related to this group) which are transliterated with 2 characters (zh, dz, sh, rh and kh respectively)[12]. The second and fifth of which has no equivalent in the English language, and barely has any in romance languages. The fact that they are transliterated with two letters can make it confusing to non-Armenian speakers, as it's only a single sound, e.g. Ayrudzi is not pronounced ay-rud-zi, it's pronounced ay-ru-dzi.
    The remaining letters (Ղ/ղ, Յ/յ, Ջ/ջ, Ւ/ւ, and Ր/ր) are transliterated as ł, y, j, w and r (the first and last one having been discussed already)[13].

    Diphthongs:
    The matter of diphthongs is problematic, as most diphthongs might have lost their original pronunciation. There are six diphthongs in Grabar: այ/ay, ոյ/oy, աւ/aw, եւ/ew, իւ/iw and եա/ea, of which their early pronunciation is not known[15].

    Notes:
    [1]Garsoian, N. (2004). The Emergence of Armenia. In the Armenian People From Ancient to Modern Times (Vol. 1). New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillian.
    [2]Diakonov, I. (1984). The Historical Composition of Old Armenian. In The Pre-history of the Armenian People. Caravan Books.
    [3]As attested by the spelling of Palestine (Պաղեստին/Pałestin, now Paghestin), metal (մետաղ/metał, now metagh), Helen (Հեղինէ/Hełine, now Heghine) and church (from ἐκκλησία/ekklesia in Greek) (եկեղեցի/ekełetsi[7], now yekeghetsi).
    [4]If you wish to know a bit more about the phonology of the letters we describe here, look at their respective notes, there is a link at the end of each note (on the IPA description) that will let you listen to the pronunciation of the letter. One must remember, however; that this is Classical Armenian phonology, not Modern.
    Vowels

    [5]Ո/ո is pronounced "Vo" (IPA: /vo/) when in an initial sound in Modern Armenian, but it appears only as a late addition in Classical Armenian.[15]

    [6.1]Ա/ա is pronounced as the a in the German word Tag. IPA: /ɑ/.
    [6.2]Ի/ի is pronounced as the ee in the English word Free. IPA: /i/.
    [6.3]Ո/ո is pronounced as the French word Eau. IPA: /o/.

    [7]The pronunciation of Ե/ե at the beginning of a word is very problematic. For instance, several Greek words that start with epsilon (or the alpha-iota diphthong in later periods) are transliterated with Ե (e.g. ἐκκλησία (ekklesia, congregation) to եկեղեցի/ekełetsi or Ἐκβάτανα (Ekbatana, the city) to Եկբատան/Ekbatan) (another word of noting is եղն/ełn (deer), which comes from the same root as Ancient Greek ἔλαφος/elaphos (deer) and Lithuanian elnias (deer)). However, a special case is the word for Jerusalem (Երուսաղէմ/Erusalem/Yerusalem), though it seems to have been a special case and was a /je/ sound only in certain cases.[15]

    [8.1]Ե/ե is pronounced as the e in the English word Bed. IPA: /ɛ/.
    [8.2]Է/է is pronounced as the é in the French word Beauté. IPA: /e/.
    [8.3]Ը/ը is pronounced as the e in the German word Bitte.IPA: /ə/.

    [9]Ու/ու is pronounced as the u in the Spanish word Sur and sometimes as the v in the English word Victory. IPA: /u/ and sometimes as /v/.
    Consonants

    [10.1]Բ/բ is pronounced as the b in the English word Bad. IPA: /b/.
    [10.2]Գ/գ is pronounced as the g in the English word Good. IPA: /g/.
    [10.3]Դ/դ is pronounced as the d in the English word Decent. IPA: /d/.
    [10.4]Զ/զ is pronounced as the z in the English word Size. IPA: /z/.
    [10.5]Լ/լ is pronounced as the l in the English word Large. IPA: /l/.
    [10.6]Հ/հ is pronounced as the first h in the English word Height. IPA: /h/.
    [10.7]Մ/մ is pronounced as the m in the English word Many. IPA: /m/.
    [10.8]Ն/ն is pronounced as the n in the English word Number. IPA: /n/.
    [10.9]Ս/ս is pronounced as the s in the English word Sauce. IPA: /s/.
    [10.10]Վ/վ is pronounced as the v in the English word Version. IPA: /v/.[14][15]

    [11.1]Թ/թ is pronounced as the t in the English word Take. IPA: /th/.
    [11.2]Տ/տ is pronounced as the t in the English word Stack. IPA: /t/.
    [11.3]Ք/ք is pronounced as the c and k in the English word Cake. IPA: /kh/.
    [11.4]Կ/կ is pronounced as the c in the English word Scan. IPA: /k/.
    [11.5]Փ/փ is pronounced as the p in the English word Pie. IPA: /ph/.
    [11.6]Պ/պ is pronounced as the p in the English word Space. IPA: /p/.
    [11.7]Ց/ց is pronounced as the c in the Mandarin word Can IPA: /tsh.
    [11.8]Ծ/ծ is pronounced as the tz in the Romanian word Petza. IPA: /ts/.
    [11.9]Չ/չ is pronounced as the ch in the English word Bleach. IPA: /tʃh/.
    [11.10]Ճ/ճ is pronounced as the ch in the Spanish word Hechar. IPA: /tʃ/.

    [12.1]Ժ/ժ is pronounced as the si in the English word Vision or the j in the French word Jeux. IPA: /ʒ/.
    [12.2]Ձ/ձ is pronounced as the z in the Italian word Zero or the tz in the Catalan word Dotze. IPA: /dz/.
    [12.3]Շ/շ is pronounced sh the shoot in the English word Shoot. IPA: /ʃ/.
    [12.4]Ռ/ռ is pronounced as the r in the Spanish word Rojo. IPA: /r/.
    [12.5]Խ/խ is pronounced as the j in the Spanish word Juego. IPA: /χ/.

    [13.1]Ղ/ղ is pronounced as the l in the English word Peel (in an American accent). IPA: /ɫ/.
    [13.2]Յ/յ is pronounced as the y in the English word You. IPA: /j/.
    [13.3]Ջ/ջ is pronounced as the j in the English word Jump. IPA: /dʒ/.
    [13.4]Ւ/ւ may be pronounced as the v in the English word Victory or w in the English word Win, it is not known nor can it be verified, though the latter pronunciation is usually given. IPA: /v/ or IPA: /w/.[14][15]
    [13.5]Ր/ր is pronounced as the r in the English word Red. IPA: /ɹ/.
    Bibliography:
    [14]Clackson, J. (2008). Classical Armenian. In The Ancient Languages of Asia Minor. Cambridge University Press.
    [15]The Linguistics Research Center of the University of Texas at Austin. (2011). Classical Armenian Online. Retrieved August 13, 2012, from http://www.utexas.edu/cola/centers/l...armol-1-X.html.



    Government and Social Structure

    The social and administrative structure of the Orontid kingdoms is extremely undocumented by both archaeology and written records. What we have pieced together was based on the (also scarce) information of the social structure of the Seleukid Empire[1] and later periods of Armenian history. Therefore, most of our section on the Orontid structure is but speculation based on the extrapolation of external evidence. We do not present this information as an accurate description of the administrative structures, but larger amounts of research has been put into this section so that we can describe it (to a certain extent) as plausible.

    The Orontid kingdoms of Armenia and Sophene are hereditary monarchies ruled by the Ark'ay (King). It's most likely that there is no great body of statesmen that form a defined council or represent the citizens of the kingdom.

    The kingdoms were probably divided between four socio-economic classes. The king and his sons constitute the nobility; it is likely, however; that he had many advisors, ministers and financiers to manage the kingdom's domestic affairs. It is also possible that the king would have various friends (large landowners and/or very wealthy men) as his retinue, granting a handful of them the rank of Zoravar (General) or assigning them as his T'iknapah (Bodyguards).
    The Hołateark' (landowners, singular: Hołater) are the richest men in the kingdoms, they own large tracts of land, which are worked by the slaves they own and the peasants they pay. They are the elite forces of both Cavalry and Infantry, as most landowners are in Hellenistic times.
    The citizens constitute the medium forces of the army, a few of them carrying expensive equipment, and another few, cheap equipment, but most of them carrying unremarkable panoply. Their trades varied from man to man, from artisans to merchants and potters. Though there were not many cities in the lands under the Orontid crown, compared to the Hellenistic regions where city-states were numerous and littered about, thus reducing the amount of able-bodied citizens considerably.
    The Rhamikk' (peasants, singular: Rhamik) were the lowest (second lowest if we include the slaves) social class. They lived in small villages (along with the slaves), each ruled by a village chief (Xenophon calls him Komarchos[2]). This village chief collected taxes to be sent to the king[4]. Some of these villages were built underground so that they would be protected from the cold winters and enemy forces, even the lifestock would be kept underground, along with the villagers.[3] These villages were located around the villa of the landowner or the lands they were assigned in. A small minority may have independent farms, but they aren't terribly large, though the income received from them is better. They are generally very economically poor, as most peasants were in Hellenistic times, and constitute the rabble of the armies, in the form of skirmishers and light infantry.

    The economics of the land will be analysed more in-depth in later sections.

    Both Armenia and Sophene are part of the domain of the Seleukid Empire. The king is allowed to retain the pseudo-independence for both kingdoms, and his kingship over them, as well as the uninvolvement of the Seleukid king on the affairs of his lands. The king must pay an unknown amount of tribute to the Seleukid monarch, which possibly consisted of both goods, and silver[1][5].

    Kommagene, however; is not a kingdom. It's one of the many satrapies (provinces) of the Seleukid Empire, and it's ruled by the satrap (governor). The satrap must answer to the king of the Seleukids and give him regular tribute; he can raise an army of his own, but most likely has several advisors and ministers who report personally to the king. He is in charge of managing the cities, taxes and citizens; as well as collecting taxes and controlling the natives. The citizens must answer to their satrap, but their allegiance is to the king first (ideally). The population consists mostly of Greeks, as well as Syrian natives and little to no Armenians. The class system is similar to that of the Orontid kingdoms, the Satrap and his retinue, the large landowners, the citizens and peasants. The title of Satrap of Kommagene was heredited by the Orontids since Shamush received the title from Antiochos I.

    Notes:
    [1]Rostovtzeff, M. (1941). The Seleucid Empire. In The Social and Economic History of the Hellenistic World (Vol. 1). Oxford University Press.
    [2]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.10.
    [3]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.25.
    [4]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.24.
    [5]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.34.



    Foreign Relations

    The Seleukid Empire

    The kingdoms of Armenia and Sophene are protectorates of the Seleukid Empire. They pay regular tribute but they are semi-independent, the king doesn't have to report personally to the Seleukid Emperor; but the latter is not obligated to defend the lands of the former. Eruand III fought (and lost) a war started by Antiochos I around 272 BCE against Sophene and relations are still damaged; as the Orontids continue desiring independence and autonomy from their rulers.

    The satrapy of Kommagene is a special case. The Satrapy does not appear until the governance of Shamush, son of Eruand III; it was likely given to him by Antiochos I, who fought and defeated Eruand III, Shamush's father; and whether he supported his father in the war or not is not documented; but it's likely that he did.

    The Orontids are subject to their rule only so that they may keep some of their power. But if they were to find the Seleukids in a weakened position, they would likely proclaim independence from their rule. But Antiochos is wary of giving them too much power, and only left them with enough as to appease them. His kingdom benefits from the tribute coming from the rich lands of the king, as well as the lack of any all-out war between both kings.

    The Kingdom of K'art'li

    The king of K'art'li (P'arnavazi) expressed open support and welcomed the rule of Antiochos, thus; ensuring that the Orontids would be utterly irritated with him. His kingdom marks the end of the Orontid lands; they cannot wage war at him, unless they want the Seleukids promptly returning the favour. Their peace is only maintained by the military might of Antiochos; if not for that thread that forces them to tolerate one another, they would be enemies.

    The Ptolemaic Kingdom

    Having tried to secede from the Seleukid Empire in the middle of the first Syrian War, the Lagids became their most valuable pseudo-allies. Their common enemy was a driving factor in establishing a temporary cooperation. However, it was not official; and it was most certainly tacit. But their mutual support was cut short when Eruand was defeated in 272 BCE. And so was their little alliance. Since they are subject to the Seleukid Empire, the Orontids cannot make many attempts at agreements towards the Ptolemaics; as that would constitute a great disrespect to the Seleukid sovereignty and very well could embroil them in a war they might likely lose.

    The Ptolemaic Kingdom is a suitable ally, but only if they are warring against the Seleukids themselves. The Orontids might receive support from them if they try to fight for secession alone; but it is likely that it will not be enough, as the forces of Antiochos would not have another larger front to tend to, leaving most of their forces in Mesopotamia able to campaign against the Orontid kingdoms. As well as the forces of the Kingdom of K'art'li, who would envelop Armenia from the north.

    The Kingdom of Bithynia

    Ziaelas, usurped king of Bithynia; had taken refuge in the court of the king before reclaiming his throne a few years prior (around 255 BCE). Though the quality of the treatment of his host is never recorded, it is safe to assume it was fair enough (given that he didn't seek refuge in another kingdom). The kingdom of Bithynia has a similar situation with the Seleukid Empire, though the war between the two kingdoms appears to have been instigated by Antiochos, Nikomedes, king of Bithynia; won the war (or didn't lose it, to be more precise), unlike Eruand. With the aid given to Ziaelas has led to a favourable dealings; though the distance between the two kingdoms might difficult their proceedings, their mutual cooperation (if facile) is a given.

    Other Hellenistic Kingdoms

    The Hellenistic kingdoms under the rule of the Seleukids are an unstable lot. Always vying for independence and to keep their Seleukid rulers at bay. If enough of them declared independence, the Seleukid Empire would be fighting in every front possible; at least one third of their income would be lost, and would create a possibly unmanageable situation. War between the minor kingdoms is not be uncommon, but cooperation is more likely if relations are not already strained. The Kingdom of Pontos will likely be one of the first who would aid one another if they both are in a war for independence. As for the relations between Armenia and the other kingdoms, it can usually be described as mild, and the actual levels of cooperation would likely be ad hoc, rather than official alliances.



    Economy

    This section, like the section on the Administration is based on speculation and extrapolated data; same disclaimer applies to this section.

    Xenophon referred to Armenia as "large and prosperous"[1], Herodotos also referred to Armenians as "another people [along with the Phrygians] rich in flocks"[2]. Xenophon also talks about the riches in "Western Armenia"; "There they [the soldiers who raided the villages around the Teleboas river] had all possible good things in the way of supplies—animals for sacrifice, grain, old wines with a fine bouquet, dried grapes, and beans of all sorts"[3] and that "they [the soldiers] found ointment there in abundance (...) made of pork fat, sesame, bitter almonds, or turpentine. They found also a fragrant oil made out of these same ingredients"[4] and he also describes the military tent of Tiribazos (the Uparkos of the satrapy of Armenia) "with silver-footed couches in it, and drinking cups"[5] and on how the Komarchos (village chief) had in his possession when he was captured, "(...)there [Polucrates and his men] took possession of all the villagers, the village chief included, seventeen colts which were being reared for tribute to the King(...)"[6] and "(...) They asked him [the komarchos] again for whom the horses were being reared. He answered, as tribute for the King (...)"[7].

    Armenia proper has abundant copper (a key ingredient in the production of bronze and brass) and gold quarries, as well as several silver mines and very few to no iron mines. Sophene and Kommagene are both rich in salt and silver mines, silver mines from which many Seleukid coins were minted.

    It is clear that Armenia is agriculturally rich and so it is in livestock. Taxes from the peasant villages are collected by the Komarchoi (village chiefs)[6]. Most peasants were generally very poor (as was the tradition in the Hellenistic period) and landowners paid very little for their work; however, the villages had plenty of consumables, livestock and other goods (see [3]). It is likely that most of the produce is sent as the tribute of the land to either the landowners or the king.
    It is possible that the lands are divided between the royal lands (owned and exploited by the king and his family), and the private lands. The harvest and livestock of the royal lands was probably traded for money, and that was kept as part of the private treasury of the royal family, which is used for personal expenditures of the royal family (clothes, equipment, horses, etc.). The kingdom's treasury, on the other hand; was filled with the taxes and tribute that was sent to the king, and used for public expenditures (army wages, salaries of the ministers, construction of public buildings, etc.).[9]
    The taxation system is likely based on the Seleukid tax system (whose actual structure is lacking in documentation as well). The taxes being divided into five categories. Taxes from trade, lands, produce and a general tax.[9]
    Trade tax is a monetary tax that possibly consists of a combination of frontier taxes (taxes collected from merchants when entering or exiting Orontid lands or cities), taxes on transactions (a sales tax, collected when an item is sold or bought by a merchant) and taxes for the use of roads (similar to a modern toll booth).[9]
    The lands tax were monetary taxes that were collected in regards to the amount of farmland owned. Either the peasants living in villages pay taxes as a whole village, or the landowner pays the land tax for them (they are settled in his land) (though the last option might not account for what Xenophon tells us of the situation in previous periods[6][7]).[9]
    The tax collected from produce is not monetary, unlike the previous two. A portion of the products obtained by the people would be sent to the king as tribute. It is likely that they were sent as actual goods (food, livestock, metals, etc.)[7] and then the king (or his ministers/financiers) would decide which goods to be sold in the markets, and which goods to be kept as is and used in various means (e.g. silver for minting coins).[9]
    The general tax is applied to everyone, it is applied for living and is collected every certain period of time (possibly a year).[9]

    There are also other taxes possibly collected as well. The taxes from salt mines (possibly paid with salt, mentioned in Babylonian records), and taxes from cattle (although this was only used in Ptolemaic Egypt and Attalid Anatolia, but not mentioned by any Seleukid documents).[9]

    The tribute that was given to the Seleukid Empire at time is not known, whether it was high or low; however, Herodotos does indicate that Armenia paid four hundred talents of silver to Persia[8]. We can speculate that it might have still been somewhat high, as there would also still be repercussions from the war that ended around 270 BCE (most likely with Eruand suing for peace), but there are no records about this, so it is mere conjecture. We do know, however, of the tribute Xerxes had to pay to the king Antiochus III as terms of the peace treaty, which were 300 talents of silver and 1000 horses and mules, but these were not regular taxes.[10]

    Though minor points, we do not know how taxes were collected (besides those of the peasants) either, we can assume a city would collect the taxes from all of its citizens, but it is not known whether the landowners sent the tribute personally to the king, or whether there was an intermediary in the whole process. The treasury might have been kept in Armavir, the capital of Armenia, but it might have been divided between the treasury of Sophene and the treasury of Armenia.

    In any case, the economic administration of the Orontid kingdoms is undocumented, and that of its neighbour, the Seleukid Empire; is meagre. It's hard to paint a possible picture of what the economic system was like with so little information, with speculation having to fill the wide gaps between the minuscule amounts of trustful information we have available.

    Notes:
    [1]Xenophon, Anabasis, 3.5.17.
    [2]Herodotos, Histories, 5.49.6.
    [3]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.4.9.
    [4]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.4.13.
    [5]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.4.21.
    [6]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.24.
    [7]Xenophon, Anabasis, 4.5.34.
    [8]Herodotos, Histories, 3.93.1.
    [9]Rostovtzeff, M. (1941). The Seleucid Empire. In The Social and Economic History of the Hellenistic World (Vol. 1). Oxford University Press.
    [10]Polybios, The Histories, 8.25.



    Territories


    Hayastan

    Capital: Armavir.

    The kingdom of Armenia is bordered on the east by the kingdom of Atropatene, which lies southeast of the Araxes river. On the north, the kingdom is bordered by the kingdom of K'art'li, which is on the other side of the Lesser Caucasus mountains. On the west, it's bordered by the Kingdom of Pok'r Hayk' (Lesser Armenia) along very hilly and rough terrain. The southern frontier is dominated by mountains as well, they separate the region of Hayastan and Korchayk' (Gorduene), as well as a small border of Tsop'k'. The region is divided in two by the Armenian highlands, a predominantly mountainous section in the southern portion, and to the north, a large valley enclosed by mountains, with a few small paths to travel between them.

    Tsop'k'

    Capital: Karkatiokert.

    The kingdom of Sophene is bathed by the Tigris and Euphrates rivers; and its location on the fertile crescent makes very productive land. Bordered on the north by Pok'r Hayk' (Lesser Armenia), separated by the western Taurus mountains; to the west is Kommagene, who shares the Euphrates as its border. The mountainous region of Korchayk' (Gorduene) is on the eastern frontier, and the region of Suria (Syria) on its southern one. The northern portion is littered with mountains and hills, while the south is relatively flat and very fertile.

    Kommagene

    Capital: Shamushat.

    The region of Kommagene is similar to that of Tsop'k', the north, a mountainous place, and the south, fertile flatlands. The Euphrates runs alongside the border between Kommagene and Tsop'k', and the Taurus mountains run alongside the border between Kommagene and Kappadokia. To the south lies Syria and to the west, Kilikia. Similarly to Tsop'k', its placement on the fertile crescent makes for good farmlands.



    Symbol

    The symbol is based off a coin from the reign of Arsham, which depicts a horseman with his spear braced and looking backward[1]. Horsemen representations were very common, with several of these depictions on many coins from Arsham, the king; some fighting against an animal[2][3], others fighting against foot soldiers[4][5][6]; and one simply braced to a charge[1].

    But horsemen are but a few of the symbols used in Orontid coinage; they also commonly used symbols are Hellenic in origin; the eagle of Zeus being the most prominent[7][8], the caps of the Dioskouroi (sons of Zeus, Castor and Poludeukes)[9][10] as well as other symbols such as a winged thunderbolt[11]. The names of the Orontid kings are written in Greek characters and in their Hellenised form.

    The horsemen depictions are possibly an adoption from Persian imagery, which had numerous illustrations of horsemen, some of the more notable include a charging cavalryman[12] and the fight between a lion and two men on horseback[13]. The first one being similar to the coin from which the symbol was based[1]. The Persians had a rich tradition of fielding great cavalry, and Armenia kept that tradition as well, even into later periods, being par even with the renowned Parthians. Which makes the choice of the symbol to represent Hayastan even more befitting.

    Note: All footnotes on this subsection are links to take you to the image being described, there are no actual footnotes for this subsection.



    Credits

    Historical Research and Writing:
    Drtad
    jirisys

    2D Art:
    jirisys

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    Default Preview 1: Military



    Military

    Introduction

    It is very difficult to piece together what the Armenian roster should be. There is no written evidence for the equipment, army composition or even army size for our time period. What little we know from the Armenian military comes from either Herodotos or Xenophon, and it is very little. We also have a small amount of coins from the Orontids (mostly Arsham's) which show horsemen and foot soldiers alike; though in a very low quantity and low quality.

    Herodotos states in his Histories (7.72-73) that "The Paphlagonians in the army had woven helmets on their heads, and small shields and short spears, and also javelins and daggers; they wore their native shoes that reach midway to the knee. (...) The Phrygian equipment was very similar to the Paphlagonian, with only a small difference. (...) The Armenians, who are settlers from Phrygia, were armed like the Phrygians". Apart from being a somewhat undescriptive description itself, the fact that its two hundred years old by the third century BCE makes it all the more unreliable, though not useless.

    Around fifty years later, Xenophon relates in Anabasis, 4.3.3-4 that "[The Ten Thousand] caught sight of horsemen at a place across the river, (...) and likewise foot-soldiers drawn up in line of battle (...) to prevent their pushing up into Armenia. All these were the troops of Orontas and Artuchas, and consisted of Armenians, Mardians, and Chaldaean mercenaries. The Chaldaeans were said to be an independent and valiant people; they had as weapons long wicker shields and lances", and also in Anabasis 4.4.16-17 he narrates that "[Democrates] had captured, (...) and brought back with him a man with a Persian bow and quiver and a battleaxe of the same sort that Amazons carry (he likely refers to the Sagaris). When this man was asked from what country he came, he said he was a Persian". Even though these descriptions aren't describing Armenian soldiers themselves, they can bring insight to the type of equipment present in the region and surroundings. But they still suffer from the same problem, they are a hundred and fifty years old as of 250 BCE.
    Another interesting passage that Xenophon writes is related to Armenian horses, and a comparison to the Persian ones; stating (4.5.36) "The horses of this region were smaller than the Persian horses, but very much more spirited". This could be due to the fact that Scythians were the closest nomadic tribe to the land of Armenia for many centuries, and they are known to use a horse breed similar to the modern Altaic horse, which is indeed smaller than most common breeds. Thankfully this description does not age as much as the previous one.

    Although these descriptions don't necessarily apply to Armenian military, and the time period is considerably different, it's a good (and the only) starting point to be able to conjecture what the Armenian military would have looked like.

    There are however, several interesting coins made by Orontes, all with the same imagery; a naked hoplite bracing his spear while kneeling[1][2][3]. Though there is some debate whether this Orontes (satrap of Mysia) is the same Orontes that ruled over Armenia.

    Hoplite imagery didn't cease entirely after his reign. There have been many coins attributed to Arsames with very different imagery between them. These ones are most interesting, in the first coin, a soldier is depicted walking to the left, he holds his arm as if he was carrying a spear overarm, in the same manner a Hoplite would, and his shield, while a bit undersized, could presumably be a stylistic rendering of a Hoplon.[4] The second coin shows us an engagement between a cavalryman and several infantrymen, one already fallen, these foot soldiers are very similar to the one in the first coin, but they fight with their spears underarm, like that of a regular spearmen, but their posture and hand/arm position might suggest that these are phalangites, instead, the shield now appears to be properly sized, and the skirt-like shape of their garments suggest either a Linothorax or a simple Chitoniskos [5]. Yet this is only speculation, as the infantrymen could be depicting Seleukid phalangites instead, facing a mighty Armenian horseman, or they could be depicting the soldiers whose equipment Herodotos describes in his Histories (7.72-73), or they could even be depicting soldiers armoured with Urartian shields instead.

    But this practically everything that can be found of pre-Artaxiad Armenian military, it is really more guesswork than proper historical research, as the source information is extremely scant; but we have tried our best to piece together what little we could find, and we hope we are able to present to you these soldiers and their equipment within a good degree of accuracy, and a proper historical basis even with the scarce sources there are available.

    Infantry

    Introduction

    Poorly raised levies; often skirmishers and militia, kept safe the frontiers against ravaging nomads, and the fierce mountain peoples. In the heart of Armenia lie flat and fertile valleys which provided the major urban centres. These supplied a solid middle class to function as citizen soldiers, who are equipped well enough to be in equal footing against most trained foes. Lastly, the feudal-like nature of the Orontid Kingdoms also saw the rise of a contingent of small, but elite troops from the aristocratic class armed with the leading equipment of their day.

    The location of the kingdoms and the region in general is an ideal road-stop for trade, and perfect strategic location for a superpower to hold a good grip on. This led to nearly three centuries of Persian rule, and, more recently; that of the Seleucid Empire. Though the heavier Achaemenid traditions had cemented deeply in the field of warfare, infantry consisted primarily of light javelineer-spearmen regiments, and the common garments and accoutrements of the soldiers had several unique and native aspects that differed from that of the Achaemenids. These light spearmen were supported by bowmen, cavalry and other light infantry when facing an enemy; there was no need for a large force of more well-armed soldiers, as their conflicts were mostly a call to arms from the Achaemenid Shahanshah.

    Up until the fall of the Persians and the defeat of Orontes III was such a military used by the Armenian Kingdoms. In response to such unfortunate events, reforms in a matter of a few generations occurred, borrowing heavily from the Hellenistic way of warfare, yet still retaining some of both their native and imported aspects. One notable adoption from outside influence was the Thureos, which paved a new selection of warriors for the king to send to battle; it was brought over by the Kelts the day they crossed into Anatolia driven by gold. A large amount of Armenian soldiers were ill-equipped and performed as skirmishers or light infantry. Though they have smaller roles in the army, usually kept as garrisons, favouring a more defensive role in conjunction with skirmishers, but could be depended on for insignificant engagements.

    The Thureos-wielding infantry would become widespread in Orontid ranks, seeing as they were indeed valuable by the Hellenistic superpowers. They were adopted as the standing back-bone; unlike the levies, they were quite trained, and could make a stand against soldiers that were decently disciplined and decently equipped. The affluent landowners of Armenian lands used their wealth to specialize themselves in the field of warfare, in which they formed their own elite regiments mixing best of east and west, such as the Orontid's own elite hoplites, which are unlike the hoplites fielded by the Hellenes, nor the standard Sparabara of the east.

    Although in a weakened state, there were always those who stood firmly for the lands of Armenia and Sophene, and their monarchs who have always fielded armies against the countless aggressors who try to take what they foolishly think are theirs, for a proper army will not let them do so; lest their beloved lands be milked like cattle by the hands of any foreigner.



    Regional Units

    Kordu Learhnayin Netadzigk'
    (Kordu Mountaineer Archers)


    Hillmen from the mountains of northern Korchayk' (Gorduene) armed with a daunting battle axe, along with their traditional longbow, and arrows the size of a child. They are armoured with leather vests and a wooden shield. They are resilient troops that will carve through the enemy using either their arrows or their axes, though they are vulnerable due to the little armour they wear.

    Recruitable in: Korchayk'/Gorduene.



    Learhnayin (Mountaineer), Netadzik' (Archers). Kordu Mountaineer Archers.

    To live near the sight of the imposing mountains south of Armenia is to live in constant fear. There are tales of men who descend from these mountains upon villages, pillaging and looting them empty, only to escape as quickly as they arrived. Forests are the grave of those brave or clumsy enough to wander into them too far. Corpses of these mysterious peoples are scarce, as they can outrun and outsmart any pursuer in the deep forests and uneven mountains they know like the backs of their hands. Border patrols would never return unscathed; and sometimes, they wouldn't return at all. Even a sizeable force marching up to the dwellings of these men would only find either their villages emptied, or a hail of arrows quickly descending upon them.

    The Korduk', as they are called in Armenian; are a fierce warlike tribe that dwell in villages located in the plateaus and valleys of the mountains of northern Korchayk' (Gorduene). They prey upon unsuspecting foes by striking from afar, hidden behind the treeline or beyond the sight of their targets; and if the enemy wants to chase and follow the path of the arrows and slingstones raining upon them; they will quickly find themselves in a fruitless task, only allowing themselves to be pelted even more. And to be on the receiving end of these arrows can be extremely lethal, as they measure around a metre long; these arrows can pass through shields and armour much more easily, inflicting serious wounds on even the most well-armoured of targets. When their enemies are demoralised or have their numbers reduced, they charge fiercely, hoping to inflict many a casualty before falling back to minimise their own losses. A well timed and well placed charge from these swift men can devastate enemy morale and make chaos out of an enemy formation. But while their Sagaris battle-axes are perfect for a quick and brutal charge; the shields and leather armour they wear are not suited for continuous combat, but they give good enough protection without sacrificing mobility. Their role in the battlefield is to stay away from enemy lines and enemy skirmishers until they are weakened and primed for a charge. If the battlefield were to have prominent hills or dense woodlands, there is no doubt where they would be placed. If they are caught off-guard, they can beat a hasty retreat and escape their pursuers from right under their noses; if cavalry is involved, they can run to the woods and annihilate them if they are foolish enough to chase them too far in. If there is nowhere to escape, they will honour their reputed ferocity and cut down as many enemies as possible before their spirit (or body) falls. Although many still live in a constant enmity with whoever claims to rule their lands, a few are convinced by force, money or the promise of spoils to fight for another man. They are superior bowmen and impetuous warriors, hasty and tenacious, and can be the end of a large group of soldiers if they aren't careful of where they march into.

    While these tribesmen are proficient with both slings and bows, they are most notable for their archery. Xenophon describes in Anabasis (4.2.28) the unorthodox way they draw their bows: "(...) when they shot, they would draw their strings by pressing with the left foot against the lower end of the bow (...)". And in the same section he recounts how frightening a hail of their enormous arrows is: "(...) their arrows would go straight through shields and breastplates. Whenever they got hold of them, the Greeks would use these arrows as javelins, fitting them with thongs". Truly a terror-inducing asset if one is able to convince them to fight in a foreign army. But beware; in order to enlist their assistance, one must traverse through their treacherous country first; and even a large army is likely to encounter severe hardships along the way. Besides, their cooperation is not assured (or likely), which could potentially make whole ordeal an exercise in futily, having lost many soldiers (if not all of them) whilst gaining none. Though the mountains will surely not mind their new decomposing decorations.



    Native Units

    Rhamik Parsawork'
    (Armenian Peasant Slingers)


    Armenian peasants slingers, able to outrange most archers, and with much deadlier, and simpler weapons. Their usefulness in melee is noticeable however, as they carry a small shield and a dagger, enough to annihilate their opponents if they dare come completely naked.



    Rhamik (Peasant), Pars (Sling), -awork' (Carriers). Peasant Sling Carriers.

    Most of the Armenian peasantry is monetarily dirt-poor (following the tradition of most peasants in the ancient world), but their duties in war are compulsory, and most peasants are too poor to buy proper panoply; sometimes even any panoply at all. Hence, they had to make their own equipment with the raw materials they could come accross, of which they usually have plenty of.

    Slingers are the simplest of soldiers; a rope, a small piece of leather, clothes, a knife and a few planks of wood for a makeshift shield. Slingers are common sight amongst every army, being tasked to pepper the enemy lines from a great distance. In unarmoured opponents, they can cause broken bones and severe internal injuries and sometimes even lodging themselves into their bodies; and they often cause painful (though not lethal) injuries against well-armoured opponents. Slingers can also outrange most archers, giving them a decisive advantage in a skirmish. Some slingers use pellets cast from lead, but a simple stone laying on the ground can also be used as ammunition, though they trade off range and power. Slingstones also have a very powerful psychological effect, when travelling through the air, they are almost invisible, and make an unnerving whirring sound as they approach; the ominous cloud of rocks that approaches with a terrifying sound (and subsequent impact) can shake the morale of even the most disciplined soldier. And though they may be useful at long ranges, carrying a shield as their only armour and a dagger as their sidearm makes for light and nimble soldiers; but a pile of horsemeat when fighting hand to hand. They should exploit their speed and tirelessness if the enemy is too close, fall back behind friendly lines or simply run away in the hopes of losing their pursuers. They are easy prey to cavalry should they be left stranded on the battlefield, and it is best to keep them near the main forces.

    Slingers are prominent in almost all armies that had a foot component; they are drafted from the lower classes of peasants and citizens, who are too poor to afford armour or proper weapons. Slingers are valued for their range, larger than most archers; as well as the sheer blunt force of their slings. However, it takes considerable time to be able to learn the basics of sling hurling. Although peasants would usually be in contact with slings, as they are used to shepherding wildstock and fending off predators. It is clear they are no professionals, but are certainly useful if employed correctly.



    Rhamik Netadzigk'
    (Armenian Peasant Archers)


    Armenian peasants armed with a composite bow, a dagger, and only their clothes to protect them. They are nimble and tire slowly. While they may be good at a range, their melee abilities are limited to what any man with only dagger can do in a battle; run away.



    Rhamik (Peasant), Netadzigk' (Archers). Peasant Archers.

    Most of the Armenian peasantry is monetarily dirt-poor (following the tradition of most peasants in the ancient world), but their duties in war are compulsory, and most peasants are too poor to buy proper panoply; sometimes even any panoply at all. Hence, they had to make their own equipment with the raw materials they could come accross, of which they usually have plenty of.

    Though getting the materials to make a simple self-bow and some arrows may not be very hard (few people were not able to come across a decent enough piece of wood), their manufacture is laborious. Crafting a bow requires some time and skill, and arrows need flint, iron or bronze for their tips, which elevates the cost of replacing those spent in a battle. Arrows are also rarely lethal, but when they hit flesh, they can cause severe damages; on unarmoured opponents, an arrow should easily incapacitate them, or even kill them due to blood loss and infections. But most shields can stop arrows without any problems, and when an arrow hits half-decent armour, it causes medium injuries at best. Peppering and annoying the enemy is their main goal, in order to either force a battle, or prevent one. Usually advancing in front of the main line to skirmish, and falling back when the enemy closes up dangerously, as they are extremely unprepared for combat. They carry only their bow and arrows, an Akinakes dagger and their clothes, they carry no shield or armour, so their speed is their best and only defence, it can save them from a bloody encounter with the enemy infantry, but it can do little against cavalry. It is best for them to stay near the main forces, lest they be massacred with ease.

    Peasant archers are rarely a powerful force on the battlefield in much of Western Asia, where archery is used with relative effectiveness and lethality; they are used to either annoy the enemy forces or to pick off enemy light troops that wandered too close. A skilful archer has to be trained for years, or even decades; but little training is needed to learn the basics of bowmanship; and as ineffective as they are against armoured forces, a barrage of arrows is nothing to simply shrug off either, they can slow down an entire army, pinning them down under a large hail of arrows. Their strength as soldiers comes from their large numbers, not their skill or the lethality of their weapons.



    Rhamik Nizakahark'
    (Armenian Peasant Javelineers)


    Armenian peasants armed with a bundle of javelins and a dagger. Nimble and hardy, thanks in part to the fact that their only armour is a small wooden shield; which makes them horse fodder if they ever find themselves caught in melee combat.



    Rhamik (Peasant), Nizakahark' (Javelineers). Peasant Javelineers.

    Most of the Armenian peasantry is monetarily dirt-poor (following the tradition of most peasants in the ancient world), but their duties in war are compulsory, and most peasants are too poor to buy proper panoply; sometimes even any panoply at all. Hence, they had to make their own equipment with the raw materials they could come accross, of which they usually have plenty of.

    Like most javelineers in Western Asia, they carry a round or crescent wooden shield (the crescent one being called "Taka" or "Pelte") as their only armour, apart from the clothes they wear; as well as bundle of javelins, and an Akinakes dagger or a simple knife for close combat. The role of skirmishers is usually reserved to the lower classes who can't afford better weapons or armour, and they are both common and numerous, easy to equip and useful for a battle. They run in front of the lines to pepper the enemy with javelins; their speed and tirelessness are their most useful tools when they run out of ammunition, evading enemies and avoiding close combat is the smartest tactic they can follow. Javelins can bring down elephants and chariot horses, with fewer casualties than trying to poke them with spears or swords at a close range. They can either become an annoyance to enemy forces, or destroy the enemy advantage in one swift throw. As most skirmishers, they are very vulnerable to cavalry charges, lacking proper armour and weapons to withstand them, so they should not split themselves too much from the main forces or be left undefended.

    Light skirmishers have historically been drafted from the lower (or lowest) classes of peasants and citizens, unable to afford better equipment than a shield and javelins. Though a volley javelins is easily more disruptive to a formation than a volley of arrows or slingstones, javelineers also have to get closer to the enemy forces to harass them, though; more often than not, they would face the enemy skirmishers in order for them not to gain superiority and harass friendly lines, and to try to do the same against the enemy. Light javelineers are versatile (albeit weak) troops and ever-present in European and Western Asian armies, and should not be underestimated, even in small numbers; as they can prove to be decisive if used appropriately.



    Rhamik Nizakawork'
    (Armenian Peasant Spearmen)


    Armenian peasants armed with a 7 feet (2 metres) spear and a sword, as well as a tower shield as their only protection. They are cheap and slightly reliable line holders, but their strength comes from numbers alone.



    Rhamik (Peasant), Nizak (Spear), -awork' (Carriers). Peasant Spear Carriers.

    Most of the Armenian peasantry is monetarily dirt-poor (following the tradition of most peasants in the ancient world), but their duties in war are compulsory, and most peasants are too poor to buy proper panoply; sometimes even any panoply at all. Hence, they had to make their own equipment with the raw materials they could come accross, of which they usually have plenty of.

    These men carry a rectangular tower shield, usually called "Spara" (or more rarely "Gerrha"), made out of wicker and wood (materials even the poorest peasant can get a hold of); a spear as a main weapon; and a "Xiphos" or similar sword for close combat. This large shield permits them to have good protection from missiles and blows, as well as making a (fragile) shield wall. They are a cheap way to hold a line, able to manage light and medium infantry for a regular amount of time. However, any heavy or shock infantry will carve right through them with sanguinary efficiency. They suffer from the same weaknesses of any weakly-armoured infantry, and are extremely unsuited if used to break or rout any non-skirmisher formation; their role is mostly defensive. They are cheap and useful light cavalry killers, as well as reserves to defend skirmishers from enemies; not to mention their suitability as a light garrison. Their light armour also makes them suited to chase enemy routers and to force enemy skirmishers to fall back behind their lines.

    Herodotos describes the equipment of the Paphlagonians in his Histories (7.72) as "[the Paphlagonians] had woven helmets on their heads, and small shields and short spears, and also javelins and daggers; they wore their native shoes that reach midway to the knee"; he then proceeds to say (in 7.73) that "The Phrugian equipment was very similar to the Paphlagonian, with only a small difference" and that "The Armenians (...) were armed like the Phrygians". Xenophon also speaks about the equipment of the Khaldioi (a tribe living northwest of Armenia) "All these were the troops of Orontes and Artouchas, and consisted of Armenians, Mardians, and Khaldaean mercenaries (...) they had as weapons long wicker shields and spears". It's safe to assume that these men were likely armed similarly to the famous Persian Sparabara, with a wicker tower shield and spear; a style would remain prevalent for several centuries along many different areas of the world.



    Hay Suserawork'
    (Armenian Swordsmen)


    Armenian soldiers equipped with imported Hellenistic panoply. A bundle of javelins to pepper the enemy, a Greek sword, a Celtic Thureos shield, a linothorax, and an iron helmet. They are the main infantry force of the Orontid armies.



    Hay (Armenian), Suser (Sword), -awork' (Carriers). Armenian Sword Carriers.

    Citizens and small landowners are the more fortunate of the lower classes in the Orontid kingdoms. In the event of war, they are able to afford better equipment for themselves. Because of their steady, but average wealth; as well as good numbers, they were relied upon as citizen-soldiers. In practice, it was the citizen's duty to perform military service for the Ark'ay. Some were wealthy enough to face the enemy on one of their many horses; while others had to be content with only having hopes to return the camp safely after a battle.

    While not the most-well equipped soldiers in the army, these men can be relied upon as either light or medium infantry. Their equipment is light enough so they do not lose much mobility; but don't run unprotected into the fray either. They wear a Linothorax, an iron helmet and an oblong Thureos shield, adopted from the Kelts. They are armed with a bundle of javelins and a Machaira or Kopis sword. They are highly flexible soldiers, adept at both offensive and defensive tasks. When the enemy is close, they pepper them with their javelins in order to weaken them and disrupt their formation before they (or the enemy) charge. Due to their mobility, they are able to execute flanking manoeuvres and exploit the open flanks of the enemy line; as well as keeping friendly flanks safe from an attack. They can also support lighter troops, engaging and scaring away skirmishers. They're even somewhat capable of holding the line against the onslaught of enemy's own troops; as well as fulfilling the role of reserves, plugging gaps in the lines or reinforcing them when under pressure. Their agility allows them to prey upon isolated skirmishers or sluggish formations like the Makedonian phalanx, running around their front and striking their flanks while others keep them distracted. Though their somewhat light equipment allows them to perform such feats, to come up against a more heavily armoured or well-trained foe will guarantee no success.

    These troops are based on the many Thureos-wielding light and medium infantry in the Hellenistic world, who are employed in a variety of ways. They are very versatile and can perform a myriad of tasks in a short period of time; being able to switch between acting as skirmishers, line infantry or flankers in a matter of minutes. Their flexibility is what gained them popularity with the armies of many small Hellenic poleis, who deployed them as their main infantry force before they replaced them with the phalanx. A skilled commander will quickly make good use of such a resourceful asset, profiting from their adaptability when the course of battle (or a small section of it) changes. Their presence in the battlefield is almost compulsory, as their equipment is quite inexpensive, thus they can be fielded in ample numbers; and their usefulness in most Hellenistic armies is immeasurable.



    Hołater Kats'inawork'
    (Armenian Landowner Axemen)


    Armenian landowners with some imported Hellenistic equipment. Armed with a bundle of javelins and a battle axe; they wear a scale vest, maille sleeves, iron or bronze greaves, a Thureos shield, and an iron helmet. Semi-elite troops that can plough through the enemy with ease with their axes and unfriendly shouts.



    Hoł (Land), Ter (Owner), Kats'in (Axe) -awork' (Carriers). Land-Owner Axe Carriers.

    Armenian landowners constitute the heavy forces in the Orontid armies. They possess very large estates, worked by peasants and slaves, from which they have gained their wealth; able to afford better and more expensive materials (and equipment), as well as training; only a handful of them fight with lighter (and less protective) armour. They aren't fielded in very large numbers, but they make up for it in their panoply and training.

    Composed of members of the Armenian landowners, these men form one of the finest troops in the Orontid armies, as a heavily armoured, highly trained, enduring, potent infantryman. These skilled shock troops wield heavy javelins and a Sagaris battle-axe to carve graves out of the enemy line. They adorn themselves with finely crafted scale vests, helmets, and greaves to protect their limbs and torso. Their most peculiar equipment is their oval Thureos shield, adopted from the Kelts. These men are tasked to make an exceptional account of themselves on the battlefield. Though these men shouldn't be mistaken for the like of Thureos-bearers, or those who form the majority of the Orontid battle line; for unlike their neighbours' look-alikes, their equipment and experience proves them as a unique and specialized assault infantry. The Thureos provides protection to almost encompass the whole body, and under the safety of their shields, they discharge their heavy javelins to break and confuse enemy formations; they then collide onto enemy lines without hesitation, utilizing the Sagaris' blade or characteristic pick to kill their foes. Although they are well-armoured, they are still quite nimble, as they wear equipment of little weight. In battle their purpose is to shatter the enemy, leading thunderous assaults to bring the enemy lines down to chaos and disorder. They too can perform tasks of the agile Thureos-bearers; though with more effectiveness, they will exploit and create gaps in the enemy lines; or bypass them altogether and hit hard the rear and flanks of their enemies. They excel at close combat; once they have closed the distance, they decimate through ranks of disciplined formations, whoever they may be. They will put to the test the years of campaigning and experience of veterans; to lead them to a bloody fight, or dare them to take to flight.

    Openings in enemy formations will be easily exploited by these men, who can make a crevice out of a dent in their lines. They can also partake in siege battles if necessary; where their javelins will harass the enemy upon climbing the walls or opening the gates, and with such weaponry which is ideal to be used in crowded spaces, where formations are practically non-existent and everything devolves into chaos, success is measure in the combat of individuals. The Sagaris, a weapon favoured by the Persians and Iranian nomads for its overarm stroke which delivered terrible injuries when used on horseback. But in the hands of any individual on foot, it has the ability to pierce armour of bronze and iron, and render any helmet useless. Although these highly disciplined men could vanquish whomever that might come to sight, they suffer from consequences as heavy troops. A commander should not allow their backs be exposed for even they may suffer causalities. If ever in the position where missiles rain upon these highly regarded men, sent to charge straight into the pikes of phalangites, or trying to run after skirmishers; it will be nothing more than allowing lives of men to partake in suicidal missions that they will unlikely not prevail in. Though good line holders, they are shock infantry, capable of unleashing quick charges and inflicting heavy casualties to the enemy in the process. They are great flankers and assault troops; benefiting from momentum, speed and impetus when facing the enemy; but any who is brave enough to charge at them will find themselves in front of a wall of axes after going through a rain of javelins.



    Hołater Nizakawork'
    (Armenian Landowner Spearmen)


    Armenian landowners armed like Greek hoplites. They carry a Hoplon, a conical helmet, scale armour, maille sleeves, iron or bronze greaves, a spear, and an axe. They are able to hold a line and pin an enemy for a long time even under heavy pressure from them.



    Hoł (Land), Ter (Owner), Nizak (Spear), -awork' (Carriers). Land-Owner Spear Carriers.

    Armenian landowners constitute the heavy forces in the Orontid armies. They possess very large estates, worked by peasants and slaves, from which they have gained their wealth; able to afford better and more expensive materials (and equipment), as well as training; only a handful of them fight with lighter (and less protective) armour. They aren't fielded in very large numbers, but they make up for it in their panoply and training.

    Hoplites, although no longer the main forces in any army, are still widely used in one way or another. While not as prominent in large numbers as before, they still appear occasionally in similar forms; though mostly as elite soldiers or as royal guards (e.g. the Hypaspists). They are better armoured than the average Hellenistic soldier, with iron scales on their linothorakes; they wear sleeves made out of maille and iron or bronze greaves under their trousers. They also carry a Doru spear and a battle axe as a secondary weapon, as well as large round Hoplon shield, which gives them their name. They are the prime example of heavy infantry; extensively armoured, well-armed, highly trained (both in their spare time and in drills), extremely powerful in the front and extremely immobile. Their heavy equipment and tight formation makes them unable to flank the enemy or manoeuvre effectively; not to mention that they are very sluggish and vulnerable to enemies that can attack them from a distance (like skirmishers and to some extent, pikemen). Nevertheless, they are able to pound through enemy formations, both of horse and men; however, it is prudent to keep their flanks protected so they don't lose the added defence their formation gives them, though they can handle themselves quite well on their own. And while these men can be put in the thick of the battle, they are often assigned as bodyguard infantry, or heavy reserves, a more traditional role for a contingent of elite soldiers. They are the most well-armed infantry the Orontid armies field, and; as such, they are limited in number; but even with their small numbers, they can carve through cavalry like butter and force any elite infantry into a bloody fight, if need be.

    Hoplite warfare is a dying trend, as phalangites are more versatile, cheaper to arm, and more mobile (to an extent); more suited to the style and tactics of contemporary warfare. But some hoplites regiments have withstood the test of time, and continue with their traditional ways of battling. They usually do so in a classical phalanx, a tightly packed formation where each soldier locks their shields with one another, and hold their spears above them, advancing as a near-impenetrable block; they do so at a steady pace, so that the formation does not disrupt while marching. Their shields are badly suited for individual fighting, as they do not cover the carrier well; they are meant to be used in groups, so that they cover the man at their left, and they themselves are covered by the man at their right. They approach their enemy in a slow march, presenting a line of shields and spears that seem impenetrable, usually making contact with the enemy at a slow speed; though rarely, they can also "charge" towards an enemy at a slightly faster pace, while also trying to keep a cohesive formation and enough stamina for the length of the engagement. Upon engaging the enemy, they assault them with their spears and try to maintain their formation and break that of the enemy. They are a powerful heavy infantry force, able to withstand and retaliate heavy enemy assaults. Despite being primarily spearmen, they are both offensive and defensive troops, they can be made to disrupt an enemy formation, and prevent the enemy from doing so, with the same efficiency. Hoplites may have been surpassed by other troop types that exploit their weaknesses well, but they still are very valuable in the battlefield if used with care.



    Cavalry

    Introduction

    Cavalry was the focal point of the Armenian military throughout the ages. Despite the cold mountains and generally harsh lands, there were fertile lands in Hayastan which allowed an abundance of agriculture, livestock, and horses. With conditions met to field them in large numbers in battle, early on the Armenians never disappointed with their cavalry. Both Persian and Nomadic influences (particularly Skythian and Kimmerian) had given birth to various classes of cavalry, able to fulfil several roles in the battlefield. The social structure of Armenia has made it favourable for those in the upper classes to fight on horseback.

    Lightly armed horsemen would serve as the vanguards of the Armenian armies, but they could also be deployed alongside the flanks or rears of adjacent troops. They were perfect for testing the patience of enemy troops, often skirmishing with enemies that came near before fleeing back to their lines. By harassing enemy lines they would also disrupt enemy formations and provide a supportive role of screening and weakening the enemy for the main onslaught. Their mobility and the lack of a defined formation meant they could perform almost anything their commanders wished them to do. However their only armour was in their speed and they could only out endure, and outrange their competition. Iranian Nomads from the north brought expertise mounted archery to the region, as well as weapons more adept to such a style of warfare on horse. The Orontid Kingdoms employed Sarmatian and Scythian horse archers, but also had their own which imitated the tactics of their Eurasian counterparts that made them one of the most famous mercenaries of their day.

    The legacy of the reign of the Achaemenid Persia was visible in the cavalry of the Orontid military. The Achaemenids were known for the elite units of horsemen who fought on the verge of being fully encased in metal, and the Armenians continued this tradition; fielding heavy cavalry fulfilling the same privileged services in the army. These regiments were impervious to almost any weapons used against them, and only a few would perish during a charge at worst. They were relied on as the assault force of the Orontid cavalry, dealing the final blow to their demoralised foe. They may also duel against their opponents' own cavalry force, though few would be as shielded as they were, and many wouldn't even withstand their initial charge. Drawn from blood of high status, these riders encased themselves (and their horses) in everything their money could buy. In consequence, they were either kept away as reserves, to sally into the fray at the right time delivering an almost unstoppable charge that swept away any in their path; or they may be used early on to give a decisive advantage, often supported with combined arms, seeing as they suffered from lack of both mobility and stamina. They often rode into battle with less armoured and more Hellenised horsemen; these were medium cavalry which proved to be the most flexible cavalry force, fulfilling most supporting roles in the battlefield. As their name suggests, they were moderately armed, but capable enough to survive a protracted engagement.

    Armenian cavalry would, in time, evolve along with the role they played in battle. Over time, the mixed variations of foreign and native panoply would morph into one similar to that of the Parthians. Gradually both rider and horse became more heavily armed; this, in time, lead to the development of aggressive cataphracts. The cavalry fielded also became more homogenous, creating heavy cavalry that possessed dual roles: becoming manoeuvrable horse archers, and possessing the ability to deliver a crushing blow in a charge, as well as sustaining an extended combat with the enemy. Hayastan has shown great equestrian prowess through the ages; an Armenian general would rely on his cavalry to win the battle, not his infantry.

    Native Units

    Netadzig Ayrudzi
    (Armenian Archer Cavalry)


    Armenian mounted archers heavily influenced by their Scythian counterparts. They carry a small composite bow, made for horse riding, a dagger, and a leather vest; but carry no shield. In the battlefield, their speed, stamina and range of their bows becomes the most useful of armour. If they are caught in melee, they will most likely die horribly.



    Netadzig (Archer), Ayrudzi (Cavalry). Archer Cavalry.

    Citizens and small landowners are the more fortunate of the lower classes in the Orontid kingdoms. In the event of war, they are able to afford better equipment for themselves. Because of their steady, but average wealth; as well as good numbers, they were relied upon as citizen-soldiers. In practice, it was the citizen's duty to perform military service for the Ark'ay. Some were wealthy enough to face the enemy on one of their many horses; while others had to be content with only having hopes to return the camp safely after a battle.

    Crafting a composite bow requires much time, materials and skill; as they are built with different pieces of wood, horns and tendons, glued together with animal glue, which is very vulnerable to humid conditions, but their power and range are considerably better than a self-bow of the same size. Arrows are made from wood for the shaft and iron, bronze or flint for the tip; though they are rarely lethal, when they hit flesh, they can cause severe damages; on unarmoured opponents, an arrow should easily incapacitate them, or even kill them due to blood loss and infections. But most shields can stop arrows without any problems, and when an arrow hits half-decent armour, it causes medium injuries at best. Peppering and annoying the enemy is their main goal, in order to either force a battle, or prevent one. Usually advancing in front of the main line to skirmish, and falling back when the enemy closes up dangerously, as they are extremely unprepared for combat. They carry only their bow and arrows, an Akinakes dagger and their clothes, they carry no shield or armour, so the speed of their horses is their best and only defence, it can save them from a bloody encounter with the enemy cavalry and run rings around the infantry. It is best for them to stay always in motion and evading enemy retaliation, while keeping them pinned down with a rain of arrows.

    Mounted archers are a powerful force on the battlefield in much of Asia, where mounted archery is used with deadly results, they are used as a main force for many nations. If in large enough numbers they can cause severe casualties from a long range, rendering infantry useless; though they can be used simply to harass the enemy force and screen them before the main engagement. A skilful archer has to be trained for years, or even decades; but little training is needed to learn the basics of bowmanship; and as ineffective as they are against most armoured forces, a barrage of arrows is nothing to simply shrug off either, they can slow down an entire army, pinning them down under a large hail of arrows. Their strength as soldiers comes from their large numbers, not their skill or the lethality of their weapons.



    Nizakahar Ayrudzi
    (Armenian Javelineer Cavalry)


    Armenian skirmisher cavalry whose horses are fast and near-tireless. They carry a dagger and their customary javelins. Their armour consists of a small wooden shield and their clothes, but their horses' speed becomes the best they carry into battle.



    Nizakahar (Javelineer), Ayrudzi (Cavalry). Javelineer Cavalry.

    Citizens and small landowners are the more fortunate of the lower classes in the Orontid kingdoms. In the event of war, they are able to afford better equipment for themselves. Because of their steady, but average wealth; as well as good numbers, they were relied upon as citizen-soldiers. In practice, it was the citizen's duty to perform military service for the Ark'ay. Some were wealthy enough to face the enemy on one of their many horses; while others had to be content with only having hopes to return the camp safely after a battle.

    Like most javelineers in Western Asia, they carry a round or crescent wooden shield (the crescent one being called "Taka" or "Pelte") as their only armour, apart from the clothes they wear; as well as bundle of javelins, and an Akinakes dagger or a simple knife for close combat. The role of mounted skirmishers is usually reserved to the wealthiest of the lower classes who can't afford better weapons or armour, but have in their possession several horses to go to battle with. They gallop to the flank of the enemy lines to pepper the enemy with javelins; their speed and tirelessness are their most useful tools when they run out of ammunition, evading enemies and avoiding close combat is the smartest tactic they can follow. Javelins can bring down elephants and chariot horses with fewer casualties than trying to poke them with spears or swords at a close range. They can either become an annoyance to enemy forces, or destroy the enemy advantage in one swift throw. As most skirmishers, they are very vulnerable to cavalry charges, lacking proper armour and weapons to withstand them, so they should not split themselves too much from the main forces or be left undefended.

    Mounted skirmishers have historically been drafted from the peasants and citizens, who are unable to afford better equipment than a shield and javelins but have several horses at their disposal. Though a volley javelins is easily more disruptive to a formation than a volley of arrows or slingstones, javelineers also have to get closer to the enemy forces to harass them, though; more often than not, they could escaped unharmed from a chase, while also causing several casualties from afar. Mounted javelineers are versatile and very agile troops and ever-present in European, North African and Asian armies, and should not be underestimated, even in small numbers; as they can prove to be decisive if used appropriately.



    Hay Ayrudzi
    (Armenian Cavalry)


    Armenian Hellenised medium cavalry. They carry a lance, a Greek cavalry sword, and wear leather armour and an iron helmet. Their horses have little armour, only an iron plate in their forehead and an iron breastplate, following the style of their Hellenistic neighbours. They are great as a support to heavier cavalry, or infantry, but can get easily killed if they are used carelessly.



    Hay (Armenian), Ayrudzi (Cavalry). Armenian Cavalry.

    Citizens and small landowners are the more fortunate of the lower classes in the Orontid kingdoms. In the event of war, they are able to afford better equipment for themselves. Because of their steady, but average wealth; as well as good numbers, they were relied upon as citizen-soldiers. In practice, it was the citizen's duty to perform military service for the Ark'ay. Some were wealthy enough to face the enemy on one of their many horses; while others had to be content with only having hopes to return the camp safely after a battle.

    Armoured cavalry is a rarity in many nations, only reserved for the wealthiest citizens, nobles or the royal family itself. A thriving oligarchy is usually present wherever a heavy cavalry forms a large portion of an army; and it is obvious as to why, as horses are expensive, not only to purchase, but also to maintain; and armour can be detrimental to the performance of a steed, the added weight and expensiveness of it all seems less beneficial than the speed and tirelessness that comes from riding light. It is no surprise either that most of the cavalry in the battlefields consists of unarmoured or lightly armoured men who use their horses' speed to gain supremacy in the field. Although they have little armour, they are well suited for engagements against enemy skirmishers, light infantry and light cavalry. These horses only wear an iron plate on their foreheads, called "Prometopidios"; and an iron breasplate, called "Prosternidion"; while their riders carry leather armour or a Linothorax, and an iron helmet for protection; a Xyston lance and a Greek cavalry sword as their weapons. They are nimble and mobile cavalry, as their little, yet decent armour does not hinder the horse's performance. They can deliver a powerful charge and engage infantry and other cavalrymen in fierce combat; although there's no guarantee that they'll come out victorious, they can certainly inflict severe casualties before they were to be defeated. They should be always on the offensive and on the move, drawing enemies out on a fruitless chase that isolates them from their forces, then charging and falling back to regroup, only staying in an engagement if the enemy doesn't have reinforcements nearby, as they might not survive if caught underfoot by more well armoured enemies.

    As lightly armoured as these men might be, a good commander can greatly take advantage of their characteristics to defeat foes that outmatch them. They are highly mobile, capable of manoeuvring and rearranging their formation in a short amount of time. They can quickly run to the back of the enemy line and charge the rear, destroying enemy morale and sending them routing. They can run rings around infantry and heavy cavalry, able to charge at their backs while reinforcements distract them; but they might not survive if they were to be matched in number and in equal footing. Cavalry is quite numerous where there are ample flatlands and grasslands; they serve a very important role in almost all armies, their mobility and speed is unmatched by any infantryman, and having cavalry supremacy over the enemy can often mean certain victory; but even well-armoured cavalry alone is quite vulnerable, as they are not suited for the role that infantry fulfils; as such, combined arms or specialised tactics are always necessary in order to use cavalry effectively, even if the whole army is entirely comprised of nomads on horseback.



    Hołater Ayrudzi
    (Armenian Landowner Cavalry)


    Armenian landowners armoured in a scale vest, scale arm guards, iron helmet, iron or bronze greaves, and a small shield. Their horses are protected with an iron plate on their foreheads and leather armour for their frontal body. Armed with a lance, and a cavalry sword. They are an imposing force and with a single charge they are able to change the course of a battle.



    Hoł (Land), Ter (Owner), Ayrudzi (Cavalry). Land-Owner Cavalry.

    Armenian landowners constitute the heavy forces in the Orontid armies. They possess very large estates, worked by peasants and slaves, from which they have gained their wealth; able to afford better and more expensive materials (and equipment), as well as training; only a handful of them fight with lighter (and less protective) armour. They aren't fielded in very large numbers, but they make up for it in their panoply and training.

    Armoured cavalry is a rarity in many nations, only reserved for the wealthiest citizens, nobles or the royal family itself. A thriving oligarchy is usually present wherever a heavy cavalry forms a large portion of an army; and it is obvious as to why, as horses are expensive, not only to purchase, but also to maintain; and armour can be detrimental to the performance of a steed, the added weight and expensiveness of it all seems less beneficial than the speed and tirelessness that comes from riding light. Though the ability to survive more easily in prolonged combat is much more beneficial to certain groups of people that can afford such convoluted measures, even at the cost of the horse's speed. But to behold the sight of them slowly charging with their horses is truly beautiful, as the enemy is able to shiver before their steeds crash at them, disembowelling them with their lances before butchering them with their swords. Armoured with scale-covered Linothorakes and scale vests, arm bracers made of scale armour, iron or bronze greaves under their trousers and a small shield; and their horses are armoured with an iron plate on their forehead (a "Prometopidios") and leather armour for their anterior body. Armed with a Xyston lance and a Greek cavalry sword, their refined armour is surpassed only by the Ark'ay and his entourage. They are able to annihilate enemy cavalry and infantry on equal footing, destroying enemy morale with a swift charge, or make their formation crumble under the pressure. These men are well-suited for frontal engagements against enemy cavalry, provided they are supported by lighter regiments so they are not out-manoeuvred. A powerful force for both offensive and defensive tasks, with their heavy armour they can survive encounters that would have reduced lightly armoured cavalry to a pile of decomposing meat; or easily destroy the enemy in a strike to their flanks, if able to get into position unhindered.

    Heavy cavalry is a precious asset, both valuable and limited, so a good use of these men is of the essence. Their signifies a large dent in the numbers of them available, as they cannot be replaced easily, unlike peasants or regular citizens. They are well protected against blades and projectiles, but they can be defeated by a cunning commander making good use of archers and infantry. They should not be kept isolated, as their numbers are much smaller than enemy light and medium cavalry, who are able to surround them and outrun them if they give chase, exposing themselves to large amounts of of arrows, slings and javelins, which can cause severe casualties, even through their heavy armour. The enemy should be pinned down before they engage them so they don't become isolated and overrun in a pursuit. Cavalry is quite numerous where there are ample flatlands and grasslands; they serve a very important role in almost all armies, their mobility and speed is unmatched by any infantry, and having cavalry supremacy over the enemy can often mean certain victory; but even well-armoured cavalry alone is quite vulnerable, as they are not suited for the role that infantry fulfils; as such, combined arms or specialised tactics are always necessary in order to use cavalry effectively, even if the whole army is entirely comprised of nomads on horseback.



    Hay Zoravar
    (Armenian Bodyguard)


    Bodyguards of the generals that don't belong to the royal family. They are equipped with a scale vest, iron helmet, iron or bronze greaves, scale arm bracers, a small shield, a lance, and a Greek cavalry sword. Their horses are armoured with an iron plate on their foreheads, and scale armour that protects their front legs. While not as well-armoured as the royal guard, they are more than prepared to annihilate anyone with a charge.



    Hay (Armenian), Zoravar (General). Armenian General.

    Affluent, prestigious men throughout the kingdom form the entourage of the king; often close friends and their offspring. Though their responsibilities are usually within the realm of collecting taxes, administrating a facet of a portion of the kingdom, or simply fulfilling the role of courtiers; in times of war, a selected few are given the power and authority to draft and command their own army to serve the kingdom and crush the enemy.

    The Zoravar is the embodied mind of an army; as such, they require to be kept safe from harm from the enemy; whether that means when facing the foe head to head, or when the cause is lost and it is best to leave to fight another day. The generals; like the king, have their own personal entourage that accompany them as bodyguards and advisors. These bodyguards are clad in an iron vest, iron helmet, scale armour for their arms, iron or bronze greaves, maille sleeves and a small shield. They carry a "Xyston" lance which is deadly with a well-timed charge, after which, they unsheathe their "Kopis" or "Machaira" swords and proceed to butcher the enemy, hacking and slashing until they fall back for another charge or the enemy formation scatters. Their horses are also well-armoured, much like their riders; they wear an iron plate on their forehead called "Prometopidios" and scale armour which covers their front legs. Even though the Armenian steeds are smaller than those of the Persians, they are no less inclined to wear armour, or to carry an armoured rider. They wear a Linothorax reinforced with scale armour sewn on top of it; they also wear maille sleeves and iron or bronze greaves under their trousers, as well as an iron helmet and a "Hoplon" shield. Although these men can turn hundreds of wives into widows in a single charge, they rarely see any combat, as most generals tend not to risk their lives on the battlefield; but if they are bold enough, they will certainly be an overwhelming force when facing the enemy.

    The Zoravar usually is the most armoured person on the battlefield; confident that their armour is the best, they adorn themselves to make their appearance grander. Only the royal family itself could be seen in a more regal attire, a fact which is unquestionable. Though the commanding skill may vary between each of the generals, the king possibly would not have picked them if they were incompetent when devising battle plans or simply being generally uninspiring to their men. The Zoravar is the image of a great leader who; if true to his title and with Nane on his side, would lead his men to victory, and their kingdom to greatness.



    T'iknapah Ayrudzi
    (Armenian Bodyguard Cavalry)


    Armoured from head to toe, they are the sworn protectors of the Ark'ay (king) and his family. Their armour consists of an iron helmet, a scale vest, scale armour for their arms and legs. They carry a lance and a battle axe. Their horses have an iron plate covering their foreheads, and scale armour around their bodies, making them nigh undefeatable.



    T'iknapah (Bodyguard), Ayrudzi (Cavalry). Bodyguard Cavalry.

    Affluent, prestigious men throughout the kingdom form the entourage of the king; often close friends and their offspring. Though their responsibilities are usually within the realm of collecting taxes, administrating a facet of a portion of the kingdom, or simply fulfilling the role of courtiers; in times of war, a selected few are given the honour to be deployed alongside the Ark'ay himself or his family, riding into battle in the most illustrious position a common man can be assigned to.

    The king and his family are unarguably the most important people in the entire kingdom; therefore, their protection is of the utmost importance. This can be problematic when they ride around on the battlefield, where the enemy general will see them as a bright moving target, and his forces will try their best to dispatch them in order to gain an upper hand in the battle, breaking our soldiers' morale; and not to mention the possibility of destabilising the kingdom, if it were to be a powerful member of the family. As more and more soldiers and officers acclaim the generals and kings who charge into the fray with their armies, often risking their flesh and blood for a show of bravery and power; they necessitate more armoured and powerful bodyguards that can take the brunt of the damage in case something goes awry in the battle, willing to sacrifice their own lives to save that of their protectees. These men have trained their entire lives in equestrianism, combat and bowmanship; they are the wealthiest and most skilled soldiers in the kingdom; and to be entrusted with the safety of the royal family is an honour and a testament of their status and skill, as not many are given such an important task. They carry very expensive equipment, which cover their bodies almost completely in metal. They wear an iron helmet, a vest made of iron scales; on their arms and legs they wear overlapping iron rings of metal called Cheires, which act as if they were carrying a shield. Their horses carry extensive armour as well, with an iron plate covering their forehead called "Prometopidios", scale armour protecting the front of their body, and thigh pieces called "Parameridia", for rider and horse alike ; the added weight makes them sluggish and unenergetic, but they can return unscathed from a charge; and in battle, it can make them almost unkillable from any side. Armed with a Xyston lance and a Sagaris battle-axe, they can tear through enemy formations, spilling much blood in the process; and if the fight were to become drawn-out, their extensive armour would allow them to survive much longer than their enemies, gaining time to regroup or for reinforcements to arrive. A frontal assault against enemy cavalry or a powerful attack on the enemy flanks is where these men will usually be; their strengths stand out the most in close combat, where there is no need for the mobility they lack, and their armour and weapons can be used to their fullest extent.

    Though the commander of an army can lose tactical vision when he joins his soldiers into battle, it has become a sort of requirement, mostly due to the influence of Hellenic martial culture, where the general with his companions and bodyguards ride into the thick of battle and make waste of the enemies as any other soldier would. Bodyguards are the most heavily armed soldiers in the battlefield, though this doesn't usually mean that they are covered from head to toe in armour, but to show that they can successfully protect the general, they have to carry the finest armour there is available. They not only are supposed to be the most armoured men on the field, but also the most loyal and courageous. Their unconditional commitment to uphold their responsibilities is never to falter, as they have agreed that it is best to lose their own lives lest that of their protectee is lost. Failure to do so is a sign of shame and cowardice, punishable by exile, defamation, imprisonment, or even death; as the cost of their shameful act can signify the loss of a very important life. Their role is one of the most important ones, if not the most important one in the whole realm, and they best not disappoint when they are needed the most, as they are the shining example of discipline, valour and eminence in common men.



    Officers



    From left to right: Officer, Standard Bearer, Captain, General, King.

    Officer

    The officer carries a Linothorax with scale plates sewn on top of it, iron or bronze greaves, and Phrygian helmet with cheekguards embossed to resemble a beard, as well as plumes on both sides of it as decoration. He carries a "Hoplon" shield and a battle axe to make short work of any enemy that wishes to harm him, usually at the side or the back of his soldiers; he is in charge of executing the General's commands, whether that is arranging a formation or tactical instructions. In the heat of battle, however; his shouts may not be strong enough to reach all of his men, so he is aided by his standard bearer or trumpeter so his orders can reach the farthest men in the formation.

    Standard Bearer

    The standard bearer has one of the most important roles in the battlefield; in his left hand he holds an esteemed symbol of the army and the kingdom, the royal standard. But as he must be placed near the main battle to direct the troops to the commands of the officers, he must have ample protection from blows and cuts and projectiles. He is armoured with a Linothorax embedded with scale armour, a conical iron helmet with a leather neckguard, and iron or bronze greaves under his trousers. His armament consists of a repurposed phalangite shield on one arm and a sword on the other; with them, he is expected to fend off any impudent enemies that make an attempt on his life. The standard is a regarded emblem for the army, and if lost, morale might falter, communications would be severed, and confusion might take a hold of the field.

    Captain

    Sometimes lesser men are called upon to do deeds of greater ones. The general might have left the army in a temporary fortification, or he might have left the realm of the living entirely, leaving the army without a visible leader, something that might spell doom in the minds of many soldiers. As such, advisors or officers must be quick to act and choose a man to lead the army while the king sends a more capacitated person. Although this man does not wear attire as decorated as that of his superiors, he is well armoured nonetheless. A bronze muscled cuirass with "Pteruges" to protect his thighs; maille sleeves, iron or bronze greaves, a crested Phrygian helmet with plumes, a "Hoplon" shield and a "Xiphos" constitute the Captain's equipment. While most men's spirits will not be raised to the skies by the announcement that this man is taking charge, they can at least take reassurance that there's someone competent enough in charge.

    General

    Whether he is a member from the royal family, or a man chosen by the Ark'ay to lead an army, the general must stand out from his soldiers, as his stature is higher than anyone else present in his army, therefore, he wears the most expensive and well-crafted armour available. A Linothorax reinforced with iron scales protects his torso and thighs, while iron "Cheires" protect his right hand, a "Hoplon" shield protects his left hand, and greaves reinforced with scale cover his lower legs, a bronze shield with cheekguards and leather neckguard protects his head from injuries; while carrying a "Kopis" sword as his weapon. While wearing comfortable garments with no armour certainly makes for a more pleasant experience out of the whole ordeal, those robes are not fitting for a man who accompanies his men into the heat of battle.

    The King

    Mets T'agawor! Great King! There is no doubt in anyone's mind who the most powerful man in the battlefield is once they see you, Ark'ay, in such regal attire. Beginning with a maille vest that covers the torso, arms, and thighs, with scale shoulder guards attached to it, while also being reinforced in the abdomen by a band of lamellar armour; iron "Cheires" worn on both arms, bronze greaves; and finally, a highly decorated, crested, bronze Phrygian helmet with plumes, cheekguards and wings. It is imperative that the King not only be well-armoured when entering a battle, but also that such armour displays the eminence of the man wearing it. Although, in the field of battle, one must also take precaution of being focused on by enemy forces, though few would be foolish enough to make an attempt on your life while able to kill a small group of soldiers and come unscathed from it all.



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    Credits

    Writing:
    jirisys
    Nikephoros Kapatsos

    2D Art and Unit Renders:
    jirisys

    Concept Art:
    Nikephoros Kapatsos

    Modeling:
    Alkimachos
    paleo

    Skinning:
    Alkimachos

    Special Thanks:
    Banzai!'s animation pack for its Bowstring, slinger and hoplite animations.
    The Europa Barbarorum Team, for the great Graphics Enhancement mod used in the screenshots.
    The many Total War Center members who helped us solve our technical difficulties and made possible to see the units implemented, and the map fully-functional.
    The many modders of the Total War Center for the abundant modding tools that have helped us along the way and have made the modding process much easier and quicker.
    The community who has supported and continues to support this ambitious project of ours, and hopefully will continue to do so until we finish. The team (myself included) cannot thank you enough for driving us to do better and give our best all the time.

    ~Jirisys ()
    Last edited by jirisys; March 10, 2013 at 01:38 AM.
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36



    Now we can go back to Work, and feel better of our selves with cheesy "memes". Also We will be no longer making such big previews, so we can pump more out.
    Stay Scheming. #Raptors

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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    The ATB team would like to apologize for the delay. We had some issues with the preview, but from now on we have learned from our mistakes and this won't happen again. I hope you will like the units and of course the whole preview. Cheers!!!
    Last edited by beos777; February 27, 2013 at 01:30 PM.



  11. #711
    Sanguinary Guardian's Avatar Sagittarius
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    I hope you enjoy the preview, folks! The best is yet to come!




    H ΕΛΛΑΔΑ κι ο ΕΛΛΗΝΙΣΜΟΣ είναι αξίες ιερότερες από οποιαδήποτε ειρήνη!

    Despite all we have lost so far, our fire still burns...

  12. #712
    Elianus's Avatar Hastatus
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Quote Originally Posted by Sanguinary Guardian View Post
    I hope you enjoy the preview, folks! The best is yet to come!
    ''Πας μη Έλλην, βάρβαρος.''

  13. #713
    NekoGenijalan's Avatar Quietly Observant
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Very detailed preview and amazing work. Congratulations to the team!


  14. #714
    CelticSlav's Avatar Kirā
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36


    Nice preview!




  15. #715
    Wallachian's Avatar Equites Cohortales
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Beautiful work!

  16. #716
    zznɟ ǝɥʇ's Avatar Centurio Primus Pilus
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Very nice, guys. Loving the history lessons.
    we are beautiful

    we are doomed

  17. #717
    jirisys's Avatar Hastatas Posterior
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Quote Originally Posted by zznɟ ǝɥʇ View Post
    Very nice, guys. Loving the history lessons.
    How do you even log in?

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    The instant notification subscriptions aren't working because I didn't get any email concerning these posts. But thanks for the feedback!


    ~Jirisys ()
    Last edited by jirisys; February 27, 2013 at 10:14 PM.
    Signature
    Because we all need to compensate...

  18. #718
    Drtad's Avatar Tiridates
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Wow a MASSIVE preview! Really wonderful.
    Under the patronage of John I Tzimisces

  19. #719
    Basileos Antiokhos Euergetes's Avatar Pili Prior
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    Very very impressive...a master piece , αρετη

  20. #720
    leoni's Avatar Princeps
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    Default Re: Asia Ton Barbaron - ΑΣΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΒΑΡΒΑΡΩΝ | New preview on page 36

    i cant get enough...exellente..

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