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The 300 Spartans and other elite warriors feared in history

The expansionist campaigns of various peoples would not have been possible without these elite warriors feared worldwide.

Warlike might has been an imperative among the great empires of the world. Since time immemorial, the peoples that have stood out among the rest have distinguished themselves by having elite warriors trained to conquer territories and, on many occasions, crush your adversaries mercilessly. These are some of the most representative:

Assyrian Army

elite soldiersPhoto: Wikimedia Commons

The rivers Tigris and the Euphrates have witnessed great civilizations. Among them, the Assyrian Empire rose as one of the most warlike and cruel of antiquity. In addition to his economic power, distinguished itself from other peoples by unholy military ability of the Assyrians.

Even for the ancient standards of cruelty, the Assyrians were noted for being particularly bloodthirsty. For this reason, in their territorial extension campaigns they had few real adversaries: they understood very well that brutality was a fundamental weapon to put on an invincible halo.

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300 Spartans

elite warriorsDeath of Spartacus (c. 111 – 71 BC), who was a Thracian gladiator who, along with the Gauls Crixus, Gannicus, Castus, and Oenomaus, was one of the escaped slave leaders in the Third Servile War, a major uprising of slaves against the Roman Republic
Illustration: Hermann Vogel Photo: .

The Battle of Thermopylae was earned a place in the annals of History by the legendary 300 Spartans who fought a melee confrontation against Athens. If they knew something in Sparta, it was how to train young men with Impeccable physics and keen warfare knowledge.

In the same way, the organization was one of the categorical characteristics to be part of the Spartan army. From an early age, it was an obligation for children to train as elite warriors, and learn to use specialized weapons. There was no other alternative: the city based its power on the war hegemony that he had built by force.

Army of the Inquisition

elite warriorsAn engraving depicting a tortured victim on a medieval shelf from the Middle Ages in England, UK, from a Victorian book from 1868. Image: .

The Holy Office of the Inquisition emerged in the Middle Ages with the order of the Jesuits. They had the premise of reconquer lost souls in the face of heresy and lack of faith. From the beginning, it was instituted as a military-inspired religious body, which perpetuated some of the most cruel and merciless mass murders that have been seen in history. Everything In the name of God.

Witches, demons incarnate, and dissenters from the Church were the common enemies to defeat. Many of them were thinkers, politicians and scientists whose ideas did not compete with the ideals of the medieval catholicism, and endured long hours of torture that led to painful deaths – mostly, unjustified.

Napoleonic infantry

napoleonic infantryNapoleon in Wagram by Emile Jean Horace Vernet (19th century). Photo: .

Also known as the Grande Armée, Bonaparte’s army undertook expansionist and exploratory campaigns that even reached Egypt. It is well known that a large part of the Louvre Museum’s collection is made up of looting that was perpetuated at the time, under Napoleon.

This is positioned as one of the most organized in history, since it was divided into different bodies, which gave him a considerable advantage on the battlefield. Riflemen, hunters, grenaders and voltigeurs they were among the positions that elite warriors could fill.

The Red Army

Red ArmyThe crew of the Ródina, from left to right: Osipenko, Grizodubova and Raskova.
Photo: CC

In a bipolar world, during the struggle between capitalism and communism, the Red Army of the Soviet Union was mythologized and feared by its elite warriors. In addition to positioning itself as one of the more effective to carry out war strategiesIt was also one of the most inclusive. In his troops they could fight men and women alike, which went down in history with the same honors, without distinction of gender or socioeconomic position.

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