It was very nice of Hugh to bring up the The Theban Victory over the spartans at Leuctra in , ah, lemme think---370 BC.
As previously noted, Epaminondes overloaded his LEFT flank (not his right as i stated) with a phanlanx 50 men deep NOT 20 or 30.
My memory does not always serve me well.
Neverthelless, Phillip Of Macedon (from whom Metacomet of King Phillips' War in this commonwealth (PROMA)) was given a nom de querre by either Plymouth Colony or Mass. Bay Colony) developed his tactics his son's leaderships and the Macedonian army.
Phillip had more men that Epaminondes and better Cavalry.
At Charonea the Thebans (as Athenian Allies or with their Athenian allies at the least) went head to head with Phillips Army.
In the decades before this battles a band of brothers presaging "We Happy Few" and the 101st ABD took shape.
It was called by Herotodus (perhaps the Father of written military history) The Theban Sacred Band.
Memory may fail me again, but the band consisted of 300 of the Bravest Thebans, alleged to be homosexual, not that it matters.
Harry Turtledove in his novel(s) often wrote of battles in the fictiticious but intereting world of Videssos.
One Battle in "The Lost Legion" (not the Last) strangely parralled Manzikert.
His novels seemed to basically rotate around a parallel Earth dominated by a (parallel) Hellentistic or Byzantine Culture in which world a Rome never became dominant.
In his novels he postulated a unit of 'lovers" and stated that "non would disgrace himself in war before his lover"
At Charonea, the band was asked to surrender by Phillip and one quote alleded to have been may was "No, it is a good day for us to die together"
I can't really verify this as true, nor do I intend to desrcibe in detail this battle, or Leuctra here.
What seems to be certain is that the Sacred Band refused to surrender and was wiped out to a man.
Alexander, again calling on memory, led The Companion Cavalry at this pivotal battle in which the indepenence of the City States of Greece can well be said to have been extinguished.
Hugh noted that the Spartan society that produced the Spartan Hoplite Armies that dominated Greece at least until Leuctra> This battle over which few Athenians would have shed tears, was an extremely repressive society.
In passing I must note that Rome was in many ways, equally repressive The Veneer of Democracy (actually a narrow form of Republicanism) was very shallow.
Perhaps only Athens had, briefly, a true democracy, in which, ironically, no woman could take part. Thus limiting this father of democratic states to 25,000 participants. I base this estimate of anecdotal evidence saying that Attic Greek was probably never spoken by more that 75000 people.
Hopefully my estimate is low.
To Alexander, Charaonea was a place where courage was shown by himself and the Sacred Band.
Perhaps it could be considered a final whetting of the sword his father had forged for him.
Still, the courage of the Sacred Band, of forgoten, speaks somewhat against the views of some regarding 'gays' in the military.
I am not gay, but I hope I never felt there was any lack of courage ever to be shown by those who served and are serving in our forces.
It seems more likely that the Armed forces will not 'be allowed" to win in Iraq when, to some extent, it has now been shown that they can win.
Partisan Politics played a large part in the Battle of Manzikert, perhaps the final field battle that started Byzantium's long slide to oblivion.
I hope this is not to be our own fate.
I can never find out enough about the Sacred band, so I hope others have input.
"All Enlightenment Gratefully Accepted"