hoplite

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hoplite

(hŏp`līt), heavy infantryinfantry,
body of soldiers who fight in an army on foot and are equipped with hand-carried weapons, in contradistinction originally to cavalry and other branches of an army.
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 soldier in the armies of classical Greece. Hoplites were usually protected by helmets, cuirasses, and leg armor. They carried large shields, javelins, heavy swords, and sometimes battle-axes and fought in the tightly organized phalanxphalanx,
ancient Greek formation of infantry. The soldiers were arrayed in rows (8 or 16), with arms at the ready, making a solid block that could sweep bristling through the more dispersed ranks of the enemy.
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 formation. In classical Greece, hoplites were often citizens of city-states, who paid for their weaponry as a duty of citizenship. Among the most famous hoplites was SocratesSocrates
, 469–399 B.C., Greek philosopher of Athens. Famous for his view of philosophy as a pursuit proper and necessary to all intelligent men, he is one of the great examples of a man who lived by his principles even though they ultimately cost him his life.
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, who fought for Athens during the Peloponnesian WarPeloponnesian War
, 431–404 B.C., decisive struggle in ancient Greece between Athens and Sparta. It ruined Athens, at least for a time. The rivalry between Athens' maritime domain and Sparta's land empire was of long standing. Athens under Pericles (from 445 B.C.
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