Friday, July 1, 2011

Battle Day 2012 announced: Plataea 479 BC

The ninth annual Society of Ancients Battle Day, Saturday 31 March 2012
Sycamore Hall, Drayton Road, Bletchley, Near Milton Keynes, MK2 3RR

Plataea 479 BC

"When he had so spoken, he crossed the Asopus, and led the Persians forward at a run directly upon the track of the Greeks, whom he believed to be in actual flight. He could not see the Athenians; for, as they had taken the way of the plain, they were hidden from his sight by the hills; he therefore led on his troops against the Lacedaemonians and the Tegeans only. When the commanders of the other divisions of the barbarians saw the Persians pursuing the Greeks so hastily, they all forthwith seized their standards, and hurried after at their best speed in great disorder and disarray. On they went with loud shouts and in a wild rout, thinking to swallow up the runaways."

Mardonius the Persian general begins the battle by pursuing the retreating Greek alliance. From Book IX of The History of Herodotus, this translation by George Rawlinson and found online at

For our ninth annual Battle Day, we once again invite you to a unique day’s wargaming.

The battle: Plataea 479 BC – the day the Greeks decisively defeat the invading Persian army to secure their freedom, and arguably define for the next 2,500 years the cultural basis of what we call today “the west”.

So stand firm with Pausanias the Spartan King against the barbarian hordes of the Persians, or join Mardonius and the Persian Immortals in demanding earth and water from these Greek upstarts!

As ever, the aims of the day remain the same:
· To have fun!
· To gather as many ancient wargamers as possible to refight a historical battle.
· To fight the same battle simultaneously on many tables, using a different set of rules on each table.

As usual the day will run from 9am until 5pm, with an hour either side to set up and pack away.

And of course, The Society of Ancients will be awarding a number of prizes (for various criteria, some more frivolous than others) to the wargamers on the day, including prizes for Best Game and Best Terrain. With luck the lazy figure painter (that would be me) will have painted the prizes beforehand this year…

To offer to stage a game – contact Richard Lockwood at or else via his details in Slingshot. But in any case, come along and take part as a player.

The cost of participating in the Battle Day, to contribute towards hire of venue and tables, will be held at £7 (juniors free), as it has been for several years now.

Every year it just gets better and better – this really should be a regular event on your calendar. Don’t miss out – come and be part of it!

The Battle Day is open to both members and non-members of the Society of Ancients.