The Army of Herod the Great

The Army of Herod the Great

Paperback Men-At-Arms (Osprey)

By (author) Samuel Rocca, Illustrated by Christa Hook

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  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing
  • Format: Paperback | 48 pages
  • Dimensions: 196mm x 254mm x 8mm | 159g
  • Publication date: 24 November 2009
  • Publication City/Country: Osprey
  • ISBN 10: 1846032067
  • ISBN 13: 9781846032066
  • Illustrations note: Illustrations (some col.)
  • Sales rank: 301,586

Product description

Herod was Rome's most important and powerful ally at the end of the Republic. Although he has entered posterity as a ruthless ruler not only against his own family but also, according to the gospel of Matthew, as the instigator of the slaughter of the innocents. However, he was also an able administrator who developed a powerful army. At it's peak Herod's army could field approximately 40,000 men. Comprised of both Judaean and mercenary soldiers with troops from the Germanic tribes to Parthians to Romans. As a result of this varied composition it showed both strong Hellenistic influence in its armour and cavalry and Roman influence in its use of heavy infantry making it an intriguing topic for military history enthusiasts. This book will be a fascinating look at the ancient army of Herod the Great which will use the latest Israeli archaeological reports and finds, including weapons and armour fragments.

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Author information

Samuel Rocca was born in Milan, Italy but now lives in Jerusalem with his wife and three sons. He served with the Israeli Defense Forces, and has worked as a teacher and a curator at the Bible Lands Museum, Jerusalem. Having studied biblical and classical archaeology at undergraduate level at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, he went on to complete his MA there, before researching his PhD on Herodian Judaea at Bar-Ilan University. Samuel has given papers at numerous international conventions, and written articles for several academic journals. This is his first book for Osprey Publishing. The author lives in Jerusalem, Israel.

Review quote

"Osprey's 'Men-at-Arms' series offers a narrowed focus on equipment and uniforms throughout history and military collections will appreciate some new additions. Samuel Rocca's "The Army of Herod the Great" surveys the military skills of one of Rome's most important client kings." -"The Bookwatch" (January 2010) "The Army of Herod the Great...draws upon ancient texts and the latest in Israeli archaeological reports and findings to piece together the strength, arms and armor, organization, and tactics of this ancient field army... The Herodian army was a complex amalgam of Hellenistic and Roman influences, and is relatively obscure even among academics, making this study a particularly challenging one to undertake. Thankfully, author Samuel Rocca is more than up to the task. A teacher and curator at the Bible Lands Museum, Jerusalem, Rocca studied and completed his MA at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem before researching his PhD on Herodian Judea at Bar-Ilan University. In other words, he has the credentials to pull of this project. One of the most impressive touches is the manner in which Rocca routinely explains the manner in which he arrived at his conclusions, such as the size of any given military unit or campaigning army. Finally, it should be noted that the book is richly illustrated with photos of relevant artifacts and original full-color artwork reconstruction by Christia Hook." -Andrew Hind, "Strategy and Tactics "(December 2009)