Aide-memoire – Persian uniforms

From Duncan on the DBMM List:

I think the intention is that the Guard are all Persians – the original hypaspists having been sent back towards Macedonia. Luke at http://www.ne.jp/asahi/luke/ueda-sarson/AlexImpDBM.html http://www.ne.jp/asahi/luke/ueda-sarson/AlexImpDBM.html said:

“Melophoroi and archer guards: Persian guard spearmen and archers were used, and it is possible that these were used in a mixed formation as in the earlier Achaemenid empire, like the old Immortals, hence the provision for Bw (X). The archers at least seem to have been divided into 3 companies (Polyainos gives three differing uniform colours).”

Polyainos has “Stationed round the pavilion within were, first, five hundred Persians, dressed in purple and white vests: and next to those an equal number of archers in different dresses yellow, blue, and scarlet” –https://sites.google.com/site/alexandersources/polyaenus/polyaenus—alexanderhttps://sites.google.com/site/alexandersources/polyaenus/polyaenus—alexander

Ailian’s version is “first of all 500 Persians called apple-bearers (melophoroi) dressed in purple and quince-yellow; then came 1,000 archers dressed in flame-colour and scarlet”.

So your front rank is Persian “apple-bearers” probably with bronze hoplite shields, hoplite spears with the “apple” on the butt, purple tunics perhaps with the central white stripe of the royal tunic, and yellow caps – Sekunda in the Persian Osprey reconstructs one, under Darius, with yellow belt and red-and-yellow lozenge-patterned trousers. The rear ranks are archers in uniform yellow, bright red, and probably blue tunics. As Peter said, this matches the uniforms that Sekunda reconstructed from the Sarcophagus.

 

Not, obviously that I would ever do anything as bad as fielding the experimental phalanx, but useful guide for painting LAPs as well.

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