Thraco-Macedonian 334 BC - 281 BC

Cold. Ag 3. WW, Rv, H(S), H(G), Wd, O, V, RGo, Rd, BUA.
Nominal list scale: 1 element equals 256 men (normal scale).

C-in-C - Reg Kn (F) @ 31 AP 1
Sub-general - Reg Kn (F) @ 31 AP or Reg Pk (O) @ 24 AP 0-2
Macedonian horse - Reg Kn (F) @ 11 AP 2-5
Greek cavalry - Reg Cv (I) @ 6 AP, Reg Cv (O) @ 8 AP or Reg Kn (I) @ 10 AP 0-2
Greek, Paionian, or similar light horse - Irr LH (O) @ 5 AP 0-2
Thracian light horse - Irr LH (O) @ 5 AP 2-6
Regrade Thracian LH as nobles - Irr Cv (O) @ 7 AP 0-1
Phalangites - Reg Pk (O) @ 4 AP 7-16
Thracian peltasts - Irr Ax (O) @ 3 AP or Irr Ax (S) @ 4 AP 4-48
Illyrians - Irr Ax (S) @ 4 AP 0-20
Mercenary archers or slingers - Reg Ps (O) 2 AP 0-6
Greek mercenary foot - up to 1/4 Reg Sp (O) @ 5 AP, rest Reg Sp (I) @ 4 AP 0-20
Regrade Greek mercenary Reg Sp (I) acting as Euzonoi as Reg Ax (O) @ 4 AP Any
Paionian or similar javelinmen - Irr Ps (S) @ 3 AP 0-6
Bolt-shooters - Reg Art (O) @ 8 AP 0-2
Trieres or Tetreres - Reg Gal (O) @ 3 AP [Ax, Ps, Sp] 0-4
Camp defences - TF @ 1 AP 0-24

Only before 302 BC:
Thracian allies: List Thracian (Bk 1)

Only after 322 BC:
Stone-throwers - Reg Art (S) @ 10 AP 0-1
Seige towers - Reg WWg (S) @ 14 AP 0-1
Coastal Greek subject hoplites - Irr Sp (I) @ 3 AP 0-8

Only in 302 BC:
Disaffected Lykians and Pamphylians - Irr Sp (I) @ 3 AP or Irr Ax (I) @ 2 AP 0-4
Field fortifications - TF @ 2 AP 0-24

Only in 302 to 301 BC:
Kassandrid allies: List Macedonian Successor 30-80
Seleukid allies: List Eastern Asiatic Successor 100*-160

Only after 301 BC:
Lykians and similar - up to half Irr Sp (O) @ 4 AP, rest Irr Ax (O) @ 3 AP 6-12
Ex-Antigonid Elephants - Irr El (O) @ 16 AP 0-2

Only after 288 BC:
Ex-Macedonian Elephants - Irr El (O) @ 16 AP 0-1
Macedonian phalangites - Reg Pk (O) @ 4 AP 8-32

Only if invading through steep hills, the enemy has PF, or a naval landing party:
Re-arm any Phalangites as Reg Ax (O) @ 24 AP if general, @ 4 AP otherwise Any

This list covers the armies of Alexander's independently-minded Thracian governors such as Memnon and Zopyrion, and the Successor Lysimachos. Memnon raised a large army from allied thracians to challenge Antipatros, but eventually came to a negotiated settlement. His successor Zopyrion launched an unauthorised expedition against the Skythians, leading to the loss of not only his life, but his reputedly 30000-strong army which must have been mostly of Thracian allies. After Alexander's death Lysimachos had to work hard to subdue the Thracians he was officially to govern, and eventually came to control most of Macedonia and parts of Asia Minor in addition to Thrace. Like Zopyrion he also had responsibility for part of the Pontic area. His earlier reputation for integrity is said to have declined steeply under the influence of his second wife Arsinoe. When he was defeated and killed by Seleukos in 281 BC, his territorial possessions, already showing signs of fragmentation, could not be held together. Unless Art (S) deployed behind PF, each element of Art (S) or WWg (S) is replaced by two elements of Irr Hd (O) pioneers and labourers if the enemy has no PF. Kassandrid and Seleukid "allies" represent the coalition force that fought at Ipsos, and are not treated like normal allied contingents. Each contingent supplies the indicated number of elements from its full list (the Kassandrid list using the options available to Kassandros despite him not being personally present), including any optional items, with non-C-in-C generals counting as sub-generals and not ally-generals. The minimum marked * applies only if any Seleukid elements are used; if so, then elements from all three lists may be mixed throughout all the commands in the army. Seleukid allies may not be used with 2 AP field fortifications.


List dates: The current list starts in 320 BC for no good reason other than all the Successor lists start then; it also covers only Lysimachos. I have moved the date back to start with Memnon, who was appointed governor before Alexander left Europe. Contrary to the current list's statement, Lysimachos was not Alexander's Thracian governor when he died, he was appointed to this position after his death - and had to fight to make the title a reality.

Aggression: I have upped this to 3 from 2, since these generals were all rather expansionist, and invaded others far more than they were invaded themselves. Keeping it at 2 would have them unrealistically fighting at home against most of their opponents.

List scale: Memnon's army is reported as being large by Diodoros, but with no figures given; it included allied Thracians; Zopyrion's as 30000 strong (by Justin, who tends to exaggeration, yet reports in the same passage that Cyrus had just 20000 men when defeated by the Skythians, which is probably under-reporting). Lysimachos started with just 6000 (albeit well-trained), and later came to control armies of some tens of thousands (but not the over 40000 Duncan Head calculates at Ipsos, since he has apparently omitted the considerable Kassandrid presence there; I calculate between 26000 and 34000 foot and 1500 to 2500 horse); accordingly the usual 1:256 scale is most suitable.

Generals: Whilst Macedonian commanders usually fought with their Companions, lesser generals sometimes commanded the foot, so these generals may be represented as Pk.

Macedonian horse: the numbers allowed here are quite reasonable even before Lysimachos taking control of Macedonian heartland forces after 288 BC, since of Lysimachos' initial 6000 men, likely containing very few Thracians, some 2000 were mounted.

Greek cavalry: likely, albeit in limited numbers; the sources generally are rather poor for Lysimachos' army (to say nothing of his predecessors).

Light horse: if Lysimachos really did have 2000 horsemen in his initial campaign against the Thracians, some of these may well have Paionians and the like; later Lysimachos had more direct access to Paionians (he deposed their last king), and after Ipsos, Paphlagonians and similar Asiatics.

Thracian light horse: the number is low because at Ipsos is apparent that Lysimachos' entire mounted contingent there, including Kassadrid elements but excluding Seleucid ones, was only 3000 or so strong. In this regard, it is worth noting that Lysimachos is reported as suffering a number of defeats at the hand of various lowland tribes such as the Odrysians and Getai, whom he never really subjugated in comparison to various highland regions. I have not allowed the option for Getic horse archers for this reason.

Thracian nobles: I have not allowed these to be supported by picked light infantry, as this practice is only recorded a hundred years or so later, and was quite likely in imitation of Macedonian practice.

Phalangites: the number is kept relatively low initially, as large numbers were only available when Lysimachos partitioned Macedonia with Pyrros (Pyrrhus) after ousting Demetrios. I have left out any ethnic description as it is unsure if Thracians served in the phalanx or not.

Thracian peltasts: the number is highly variable to account for Lysimachos' initial force and other much larger armies. I prefer the Ax (S) interpretation for Thracian peltasts with long two-handed spears rather than having separate bodies of Ax (X), not least because I do not consider the Thracian shield 'ineffective' - especially since most Thracians of this era used oblong shields somewhat like thureoi rather than the earlier crescent-shaped pelta.

Illyrians: the current list allows only four elements, apparently based on Duncan Head's statement that 600 of them were massacred by Lysimachos when their baggage was captured; the list notes say the number was 2000 (this was in fact the number of that deserted Lysimachos according to the story as related by Diodoros), but Polyainos (4.12.7) actually says 5000 were so butchered (leaving none behind to desert; the story is confused). Billows conjectures 2000 deserters and 5000 more massacred, but this seems a very large number. I allow 5000.

Mercenary archers and slingers: I have kept the relatively high numbers, since Pontus was known for its archers, and the Thracian governers seems to have had control over part of this area too.

Greek merceanries: the current list seems to allow for too few of these given how many served in other armies, especially Kassandrid armies. Kassander and Lysimachos had a very close working relationship, swapping troops and generals with each other frequently; indeed, the sources are very confused as to whether Prepelaos was a general of Kassandros or Lysimachos.

Javelinmen: I do not believe in existance of regular Greek mercenary psiloi javelinmen with shields at this time, with the notable exception of Cretan mercenaries, hence the absence of Reg Ps (S). Such troops were certainly available from Paionia or Asia, or from Greece, sich as places like Aitolia, however, these I grade as Irr.

Bolt-shooters: Diodoros' passage about Antigonos' catapults shooting at Lysimachos' fortified camp implies Lysimachos' was able to return in kind, and such weapons would probably have been available to his predeccessors.

Naval elements: not a well-documented part of the military establishment of these men, but given responsibilities both sides of the Hellespont, surely important.

Camp defences and field fortifications: the typical Macedonian fortified camp was to prove inadequate in protecting Lysimachos' camp against Antigonos prior to Ipsos, and had to be supplemented by a triple ring of defences.

Thracian allies: These are restricted to before the Ipsos campaign; thereafter Lysimachos' authority was such that those Thracians he could persuade he could compel, and those he could not, he was no longer interested in, being bent on enlarging his southern borders.

Siege items: larger siege items were likely unavailable to Lysimachos' successors, since these were only just being introduced at the time.

Coastal subjects: Lysimachos wasn't popular with the Greeks he subjugated, and indeed, there is no evidence I can find that he ever used them in battle. They are accordingly downgraded as Sp (I). I can see no reason to make them Regular, despite the rulebook definition of hoplites 'dragooned into obdience' - how this makes them better trained and more responsive to orders is beyond me. Such troops sound more in need of downgrading as Hd than upgrading as regular! He had garrisons installed in many of the coastal cities of Pontus by 315 BC at the latest so need not be restricted until aftre his campaigns against places such as Kallantia in 313 BC.

Lykians: these are allowed to be Sp, as hoplites despicted on Lykian sarcophagi are now to thought to be Lykian and not Greek, and Lykians in Antigonos' army thought in the phalanx, rather than as skirmishers. Billows belies the disaffected ones wre possibly captured as far back as 312 BC, but this seems an over long time to be disaffected.

Kassandrid allies: A large proprtion of 'Lysimachos' troops at Ispos were supplied by Kassandros. Diodoros mentions two separate contingents being sent, under Prepelaos (6000 foot and 1000 horse, although it is vaguely possible these may have been Lysimachid rather than Kassandrid troops) and Pleistarchos (12000 foot and 500 horse, of which at least half were either intercepted by Antigonos or shipwrecked, hence the variable numbers), and it seems his elephants were included too, as Lysimachos had none at the time, yet as Ipsos, Antigonos' elephants were said to have been evenly matched with "Lysimachos'".

Seleukid allies: Seleukos contributed about 20000 foot, 12000 horse, 480 elephants and over 100 scythed chariots to the force at Ipsos. I have removed the command restrictions in the current list - not least because they totally fail to include any Kassandrid generals, which put the list of generals on the allied side past the standard DBM limit of 4 - Seleukos, his son Antiochos, Prepelaos, Pleistarchos, Lysimachos, and (probably) his son Agathokles. Additionally, Seleukos is very unlikely to have commanded the phalanx - since he commanded the horse that encircled Antigonos' phalanx, and likely had relatively few phalangites himself (especially in comparison to the huge amount of horse he brought along).

Elephants: Lysimachos no doubt took a decent share of those captured at Ipsos, and he later divided Demetrios' Macedonian-based elephants with Pyrros. See here for more on the Hellenistic elephants.

This page last modified 28 November, 2002.

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