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The Origins of War: From the Stone Age to Alexander the Great

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  63 ratings  ·  2 reviews
When did war begin? Standard military accounts tend to start with the Graeco-Persian wars, laying undue emphasis on the preeminence of Greek heavy infantry. But, as this strikingly original and entertaining book shows, the origins of war can be traced back not to the Iron Age, or even to the Bronze Age, but to the emergence of settled life itself nearly 10,000 years ago. T ...more
Paperback, revised, 240 pages
Published April 18th 1997 by Westview Press (first published 1985)
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Steve Bivans
Jul 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Ferrill attempts to fill the historiographical void in the study of ancient warfare, by extending it back into the Stone Age. He argues that modern military historians, who have focused on the origins of war in the classical Greek world, have failed to recognize the significant contributions of the Middle East and Egypt to the art of war.

Ferrill’s focus is on the way armies were organized, trained, equipped and how they were used on the campaign and in battle, not on the political, social or ec
...more
Jesse Harris
Nov 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
A textbook from a history class I was unable to take, this book kept me interested from the first page. The history of ancient warfare has always intrigued me and I would recommend this book as a good starting point for anyone who wanted to learn more on the subject. It does not read as overly academic and does not go into too much depth on any one subject that it addresses. It takes the reader through prehistoric and up to Alexander, analyzing the various cultures in and around the ancient near ...more
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Arther Ferrill, a professor emeritus of history at the University of Washington at Seattle, is also a respected expert on Ancient Rome and military history. He has written four books and is a regular contributor to The Quarterly Journal of Military History and other periodicals as an author and in review of other authors. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in ...more

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