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Babylonian army in Alcaeus (1)

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12 Assyrian Identity

09 Army and warfare

6th century BCE
Greek Archaic Age
Greek poets

Alcaeus welcomes his brother Antimenidas back home, who has served as a mercenary for the Babylonians during one of their Palestinian campaigns shortly before and after 600 BCE.

Alcaeus 48:
“… the sea … to be carried … might be carried … destroys … (from?) holy Babylon … Ascalon … to stir up chilling (war?) … from the summit … and good … house of Hades … to think … garlands for us … all these … -selves …”

Alcaeus 350:
“You have come from the ends of the earth with the hilt of your sword ivory bound with gold … you performed a great feat while fighting as ally of the Babylonians and rescued them from trouble by killing a warrior who was only one palm’s breadth short of five royal cubits.”

Sources (list of abbreviations) (source links will open in a new browser window)
Alcaeus 48
Alcaeus 350


Campbell 1982, 260-263, 386-387Campbell, David A. Greek Lyric, Sappho and Alcaeus. Loeb Classical Library. Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press, London: Heinemann 1982.
Niemeier 2001, 18Niemeier, Wolf-Dietrich. “Archaic Greeks in the Orient. Textual and archaeological evidence.” Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 322 (2001) 11-32. [JSTOR (requires subscription)]

Erik van Dongen

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