Article

Gaugamela

John F. Lazenby

in Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Classics


Published online December 2015 | e-ISBN: 9780199381135 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acrefore/9780199381135.013.2797

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Gaugamela, village in Iraq (now Tell Gomel?), scene of *Alexander (3) the Great's decisive victory over *Darius III of Persia in 331 bce. The battle appears to have opened with a Persian attempt to outflank Alexander's right, which was defeated, while a charge of scythed chariots in the centre was also routed by Macedonian light troops. Then Alexander led his Companions (see hetairoi), and the right and centre of his *phalanx, to attack a developing gap in the centre of the Persian line, whereupon Darius fled with Alexander in pursuit. Meanwhile, a force of Persian cavalry may have exploited a gap in the centre of the Greek line to attack their camp, and although it was driven off by allied Greek infantry, the Macedonian left also came under extreme pressure. However, this attack, too, was eventually contained, and turned into a rout on news of the flight of the rest of the Persian army.

Article.  196 words. 

Subjects: Historical Geography ; Middle Eastern History

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