Neolithic Greek (4000-2000 BCE)

DBA Variant
Army List

By Stefanos Skarmintzos

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In the spirit of creating an army list for friendly, non-tournament gaming, here is my suggestion for a DBA-style Neolithic Greek list suitable for the cultures that existed in  Greece at that time. It is the time of the Pelasgoi, Caukones, Cares and Leleges, peoples mentioned in the Illiad.  It is also the era of Hercules and Theseus in Greek legend, which makes this army an interesting topic for HOTT as well.

The Leleges occupied the modern Cyclades Islands and were accomplished seamen and possibly aided the later naval dominance of the Minoans. The archeological findings in Sesklo near the modern City of Volos showed the existence of a fortified acropolis and clay covered sling stones (the shrapnel missiles of the ancient times). The excavations for Athens subway train in 1995 unearthed a wealth of pottery of the time and perhaps the most ancient "loom weights" of the world!

The list begins with the firm establishment of the Aegean/Cycladic Civilization around 4000 BC and stretches through the rise of the early Mycenaean/Minoan empires as they subjugated and absorbed the neolithic tribal communities. The list ends somewhat arbitrarily in 2000 BC, but could be extended to 1600 BC to correspond to the start of the Mycenean/Minoan list.

Neolithic Greek (4000-2000 AD)
Aggression 3, Arable. Enemies:  Neolithic Greek and Early Mycenaean.  Speculative enemies could include Early Libyan and Early Syrian.

1x 3Wb Tribal leader or High priest (CnC)
1x 3Wb Most loyal or determined clansmen armed with stone maces/axes or large clubs made of olive trees, with square wicker shields
1x 3Bw Archers and/or slingers throwing clay covered stones
2x 3Aux Loose fighting javelineers, with obsidian daggers
4x 2Ps Other tribesmen with javelins, slings or stones.
3x 7Hd or 2Ps Women and children aiding the defense of the acropolis, or other Psiloi

The Appearance

The warband would carry wicker shields.  Clothing would be leather, including lion skins such as those worn by Hercules. (Lions existed in Greece until 2500 B.C.). Helmets, even leather helmets, are speculative. But a boar tusk helmet for the chief is likely.  Based on the Myth of Atalandi, a lady wearing a bearskin and waving weapons is not unlikely either.  In the žSaroglou collectionÓ in the Greek Museum, there is a shield  made of tortoise plaques and leather. Large sea-tortoise shields would give an exotic appearance to the warriors of the Warband and/or their General (e.g., the Legend of Theseus.)

The Psiloi would be similar to Minoan or other early Greek Psiloi, dressed in skins and armed with stone-tipped javelins, slings or throwing stones.

Resources

Archaeology of Ancient Greece (Providence College)

The Early Neolithic I settlement at Sesklo, (N. Wijnen)

Greek New Stone Age (HistoryforKids.Org)

The Neolithic Cultures of Thessaly, Crete and the Cyclades (Dartmouth)

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Last Updated: 3 April 2005