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Podcast episode 92: geography in warfare

Ancient Warfare podcast episodes this month are, apparently, like those proverbial buses: none for a while and then two come together. In the latest episode, the team debate geography and warfare in ancient history, based on the latest issue of the magazine.

As an aside: the new podcasting software we've started to use allows us to stream live. Would you be interested in attending a live episode online, allowing you to comment and contribute, or perhaps a Q&A session?

2 thoughts on “Podcast episode 92: geography in warfare”

  • Evan Schultheis

    Just wanted to bring up a couple points:

    1. Recent research on shipwrecks has revealed that the typical route to the Crimea from Constantinople was, in fact, directly across the Black Sea, not following the coast. This was the result of the rediscovery of a (now submerged) island off of Bulgaria mentioned in Byzantine-era sources.

    2. Scouts weren't used at Adrianople because Adrianople was never supposed to be a battle. It was a show of force while the emperor spent the whole day trying to negotiate a fair peace settlement. The negotiations failed, the Romans were, as a whole, completely unprepared for battle, and things went awry from there.

  • Paul McDonnell-Staff
    Paul McDonnell-Staff October 5, 2019 at 7:34 am

    Whilst the podcasts are very entertaining, listeners should be aware that because of their "off the cuff" format, they inevitably contain a mixture of accurate and inaccurate information. One example will suffice. It was asserted that Hannibal would have needed guides to get him across the Alps. This is very unlikely. There were at least four major routes, and many minor ones in use all well known and used since "time immemorial" by traders, invaders etc, as witnessed by the famous Otzi who met a violent end while crossing the Alps some time before 3,000 BC. The most recent invaders had been the successive waves of Gauls who had conquered Italy north of the Po.There were plenty of men who had personal experience of crossing and re-crossing the Alpine passes in Hannibal's army. Indeed, Hannibal apparently changed his mind about which pass to take because of Gallic depredations. He clearly didn't need local guides.
    The point the podcast was making about guides is certainly a valid one, but Hannibal is not a good example to illustrate that point.

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