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Re: orion-list 1QM Col. ix.3-5; Origins of different workinghypotheses .
Dierk van der Berg raises a number of points I will briefly discuss.
Dierk questions whether column 9 describes the seventh lot of battle.
These seven stages (generally following Yadin's analysis) consisted of an
advance phase and retreat phase of each of the three divisions of skirmishers
in succession, each throwing their missiles at the enemy line. That occupied
the first six lots (column 8, though the "lot" terminology is not explicit).
The final, seventh stage was the clash of infantry seen in column 9. This
was the normal course of battle for both Roman and Hellenistic armies. This
over-all outline of the course of battle is explicit in col. 8-9, whether or
not one applies the "lot" terminology to this section.
Dierk assumes an arrangement wherein there are seven legions on _each_ of
the four sides of the camp, not seven legions altogether. In both
Hellenistic and Roman armies, there was a camp for the entire army in a
defensible position near the anticipated battle site (within a mile or two if
possible). When the time for battle came, the army left the camp and arrayed
itself for battle. The battles were not at the camp location itself.
Unfortunately, 1QM also uses "camp" terminology for the army as a whole
arrayed for battle, i.e. all seven legions. This is clear e.g. at 1QM
vi.8-10, where the heavy cavalry take up defensive positions on "all the
flanks of the camp," i.e. "on the right and on the left of the [front]
line,... on one side and the other, seven hundred on one flank and seven
hundred on the second flank." Here "all the flanks of the camp" [Martinez]
are simply the left and right flank of the seven legions deployed on the
battle field -- not, as Dierk maintains, "all the (four) flanks of the camp."
But since Dierk conceives of seven legions on each side of the
[stationary] camp, he suggests that 1QM describes a battle in which only "the
first (and best) of seven chiliarchies of one of the four corps of the camp,
e.g. the North-Corps" participates. (Please correct me if I've got this
I cannot agree with this, as (1) the battle arrangement of legions on each
side of the stationary camp, seven on each side, is unprecedented in ancient
military history so far as I am aware. _All_ legions resided _in_ the camp
prior to battle, and left the camp to another location _for_ the battle. (2)
That the commanders should employ only 7 out of 28 legions for battle,
leaving the other 21 out of the action, is again without any precedent in
ancient sources. What is the strategic logic behind bringing 21 legions to
the field that one does not intent to use in battle?
By the way, Livy's account of the battle at Zama in 202 BCE between the
Roman general Scipio and the Carthagian Hannibal contains a specfic parallel
to my interpretation of 1QM column 9. As I explained in my last posting, 1QM
ix.3-6 describes how the priests utilize the "rallying trumpets" to maintain
order (i.e. an even advance) in the infantry lines during the final clash of
the heavy infantry. At Zama, after the Romans defeated the Punic cavalry and
broke up the enemy's front line, there was similar difficulty in keeping
ranks during the final infantry clash. The problem at Zama was that there
were such heaps of dead bodies that the Roman "hastati of the front line
broke up their maniples and ranks to pursue the enemy where they could over
the piles of bodies and arms and through pools of blood. Then the maniples
of the principes [the second line] also began to break up, as they saw the
first line losing formation. As soon as Scipio saw this, he called the
recall to be sounded..." (Livy xxx.34) Scipio's use of trumpet-signals to
maintain order and discipline at the "pursuit" phase exactly parallels 1QM.
Livy later comments on the great importance the Romans attached to "following
their standards and keeping their ranks," a concern also reflected in the War
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