Discipline, Toil & Risk…

“That Greek philosophers of the time never, or hardly ever, experienced war did not stop them pontificating on the subject.

The philosophers, however, did come across soldiers. Their attitudes to the members of the army who protected them were marked by alienation, contempt, and fear.

They considered that the life of a soldier was one of discipline, toil, and risk.

As Epictetus (ad c. 55–c. 135) put it, if soldiers did not heed discipline ‘nobody will dig a trench, or raise a palisade, or keep watch at night, or expose himself to danger’ (3.24.32).” (Sidebottom, 2004, p.30).


Sidebottom, H. (2004) Ancient Warfare: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


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