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Thread: How likely is it that Yamnaya wasn't IE-speaking, but rather something Caucasian?

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    Quote Originally Posted by peloponnesian View Post
    I'm just saying Mycenean Greeks would've definitely known about chariots since they're attested by at least 1700 BC in Anatolia. There were wide networks of communication and trade with the Eastern Mediterranean during the Middle Bronze Age so it's impossible they didn't know about them, if they didn't use it themselves. Anyway, I doubt chariot warfare would be a game changer in the Aegean given how rocky mainland Greek terrain is and the importance of maritime travel. Also, Proto-Greeks entering Greece in 1600 BC is too late IMO but we'll see.
    Got to agree re chariots not seeming practical in much of Greece from the prevailing landscape. It would surely be easy in such a landscape to position your forces where chariots would be useless. Roads may have existed in some areas linking big settlements but then surely if you feared defeat you would defend the -usually elevated - settlement sites and force them to try a siege. Maritime transport on the other hand mattered a great deal in much of Greece. Personally I think other than ritualistic fighting, chariots in countries with difficult terrain would have been best suited as taxis for the elite using the very few decent roads that led between big settlements. Depending on the terrain they might have been quite useless on fighting on arriving. Like a lot of ancient military high tech they may have been a big advantage in level lowland coastal strips, drier valleys and flat plains, especially if that area had some kind of existing road system of some sort but the advantage soon would disappear on more difficult land

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    Quote Originally Posted by alan View Post
    Got to agree re chariots not seeming practical in much of Greece from the prevailing landscape. It would surely be easy in such a landscape to position your forces where chariots would be useless. Roads may have existed in some areas linking big settlements but then surely if you feared defeat you would defend the -usually elevated - settlement sites and force them to try a siege. Maritime transport on the other hand mattered a great deal in much of Greece. Personally I think other than ritualistic fighting, chariots in countries with difficult terrain would have been best suited as taxis for the elite using the very few decent roads that led between big settlements. Depending on the terrain they might have been quite useless on fighting on arriving. Like a lot of ancient military high tech they may have been a big advantage in level lowland coastal strips, drier valleys and flat plains, especially if that area had some kind of existing road system of some sort but the advantage soon would disappear on more difficult land
    If we go on with that, even the Phalanx was largely useless in much of the rugged terrain. If that would be the only decisive point, all fighters of Greece should have remained peltast type lighter infantry, but obviously, that was not the case. Many larger scale battles in particular were fought on specific battlegrounds, that's common for all larger armies. Like I looked at which terrain was supposed to be "difficult" or considered not usable by heavy infantry or cavalry on many occasions, and the terrain doesn't look that bad at all for a walk. As soon as the ground gets irregular, many formations and movements get difficult for these ancient armies.
    Many of the decisive, strategic positions being quite specific and its not all about throwing spears on the hills. That's evident from the other weaponry in usage and the described tactics as well. Like I said, going by that, hoplite tactics would have never succeeded in Greece, yet the opposite is true, it was born there, to defend the most important, strategic positions. The hilly ground could in theory have been used for skirmish and guerilla tactics, but that way you couldn't hold the fertile plains and valleys, or the towns and harbours.
    I won't say that chariots were as important as in Egypt, but surely as or rather significantly more important than in forested Central Europe. Because the valleys in Greece are still usable, but good luck driving a chariot through forests and swamps.
    Last edited by Riverman; 11-25-2021 at 01:35 PM.

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    Are Sintashta chariots are overrated? Compared to Hittite 3 man chariot used at the battle of Kadesh.
    The battle is generally dated to 1274 BC from the Egyptian chronology,[15] and is the earliest pitched battle in recorded history for which details of tactics and formations are known. It is believed to have been the largest chariot battle ever fought, involving between 5,000 and 6,000 chariots in total.

    Would be difficult to carry supplies to Mongolia(eg Afanasievo culture).
    As far as steppe terrain maneuverability and warefare?. Steppe has snow, ice, slush, mud, deep grass. Steppe periphery, has woods, cliffs, sand, and swamp(pinsk/prippet marshes-southern part of Belarus and the north-west of Ukraine. They cover roughly 269,400 square kilometres (104,000 sq mi))

    It's not hard to imagine a couple of mounted horse back riders attacking a settlement in the middle of the night(perhaps by setting fire)in the middle of winter. For example Abzelilovsky District Average January temperature: −16 °C (3 °F)
    Last edited by Silesian; 11-25-2021 at 01:47 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Riverman View Post
    I won't say that chariots were as important as in Egypt, but surely as or rather significantly more important than in forested Central Europe. Because the valleys in Greece are still usable, but good luck driving a chariot through forests and swamps.
    How much of Central Europe was forest at the time though? A lot was cleared and converted to fields or pastures from the Neolithic onward, wasn't it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Megalophias View Post
    How much of Central Europe was forest at the time though? A lot was cleared and converted to fields or pastures from the Neolithic onward, wasn't it?
    Rather these were spots in the midst of the forested wilderness. Large scale forest clearing mostly dates to the High Medieval period, when it reached a maximum before the plague, then many villages and fields were deserted again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Megalophias View Post
    How much of Central Europe was forest at the time though? A lot was cleared and converted to fields or pastures from the Neolithic onward, wasn't it?
    Middle Ages (green = forest)

    566-ga-lanly-europe-centrale.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by ffoucart View Post
    Middle Ages (green = forest)

    566-ga-lanly-europe-centrale.jpg
    And most of the white being marshes, steppes and mountains. Not that anybody thinks the larger white zones were farmland or something like that. The change between 800 to 1350 was drastic though, a real massive forest clearing project with the High Medieval internal and external (Eastern) colonisation.

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