Ancient Greek Weapons List: What The Ancient Greek Gladiators Used!

Oluwatosin Michael
Oct 30, 2023 By Oluwatosin Michael
Originally Published on Jan 05, 2022
Statue of Neptune with his weapon.

Greece was not a single country in ancient times, as it is now.

It was comprised of several smaller states. These nations were constantly at odds and frequently went to war.

The soldiers fought as a unit in battle. The primary Greek soldier was the 'hoplite,' a foot soldier. Hoplites fought with long spears and big shields. Lower-leg greaves complemented the body armor by protecting the shins.

Hoplites had big wooden shields on their left arms and used them to drive into hostile territory offensively. The phalanx, which consisted of rows of shoulder-to-shoulder hoplites, was constructed by ancient Greek city-states.

The Hoplites would lock their shields together, and the first few lines of warriors would thrust their spears over the shields. Spartan Hoplites were armed ancient Greek foot soldiers who fought in close formation and were highly equipped. They were infantry hoplites, like other Spartiatai, despite their appellation.

Indeed, until late in the Peloponnesian battle, the Spartans did not have their own cavalry. During the late 11th and early 10th centuries BC, Greece was the first to employ iron tools and weapons.

Legendary Greek Mythology Weapons

Many amazing and magical weapons are found in Greek mythology, and they are wielded by Greek heroes, gods, demi-gods, and Titans. Greek tales, on the other hand, aren't frequently identified with their heroes' weapons as much as Norse myths are.

Lightning, thunder, and authority over the sky are all embedded in the bolt. It is the most feared and powerful weapon on Earth and in the Heavens.

One reason for this might be that, while the ancient Greeks were a warlike civilization, they aren't well-known in current times. Another reason could be that most of the weapons used by Greek gods and heroes are unnamed — they are simply known as Poseidon's Trident, Apollo's bow, and so on.

Zeus' Thunderbolt was a real weapon, not merely a display of lightning and thunder that he could summon with his hands. The Cyclopes gave Zeus the Thunderbolt when he released them and murdered his own father, Cronus, the Cyclopes' jailor.

Poseidon's Trident is the second most common weapon in Greek myth, which is suitable given that Poseidon is Zeus's brother as well as the god of the sea, and also the Greek pantheon's second most powerful deity.

Although Hades' Bident or Hades' Pitchfork is not as well-known as Poseidon's Trident, it has had a comparable impact on other ancient cults. Bidents or tridents are carried by many Underworld gods, devils, or demons in different cultures to torment the lost souls in their care, and Hades may be the major source of that depiction.

The Aegis, a strong weapon invented by Hephaestus, is a shield that may also be used as a weapon. The Aegis is constructed of polished brass and is also known as a mirror or brass, according to Greek mythology.

Hermes is known as the Greek gods' messenger, a coveted status bestowed upon him by Zeus in order to curb Hermes's mischievous character.

Apollo's bow and fire arrows were just one of those weapons which didn't have such a name but were instantly recognizable. Apollo is a god of several disciplines, including archery, healing, illnesses, prophecy, truth, dancing, and music.

The strap added enough strength to take down enormous wildlife, making javelins a popular hunting weapon. The Ancient Olympics and other Panhellenic events had javelins as well.

Spear And Sword

The spear was the ancient Greeks' missile weapon for killing enemies. They used a small, single-handed curved sword with an iron head called Xiphos if it broke.

The Xiphos possessed a double-edged blade that seldom exceeded 20 in (50 cm) in length, making it ideal for close-range combat. The rim of an ancient smashing sword is commonly used, although the face can also be used.

The hoplite was an armored foot troop in ancient Greece who fought mostly with spears and shields. The archers may carry a crossbow as a long-range weapon and a sword as a secondary weapon.

The Greeks utilized the weapons named Kopis, a one-handed, single-edged short sword. In Ancient Greece, the name kopis might refer to a large knife with a forward-curving blade that was principally used for slashing and chopping meat.

The Forerunner of the medieval crossbow, Gastraphetes, was the long-range weapon of ancient Greeks like Alexander the Great.

Dory was the ancient Greeks' principal weapon. It was a long spear with a wood shaft and an iron head, measuring roughly 9 ft (3 m) in length.

Hoplon was a massive, heavy spherical shield with a diameter of 3 ft (1 m) and a weight of 15-22 lb(7-10 kg). Greek foot warriors used this because it was such an essential element for fighting on the battlefield.

The Athenians were the most effective at naval battles, and their major naval technique was ramming. The ram was made out of a 6-12 ft (1.8-3.6 m) long armored beak formed by an underwater extension of the ship's bow.

Armor And Shield

The middle armband of a hoplite shield from the interior is called porpax in the early 6th to late 7th century BC. Hoplon, which is a general Greek word for the weapon, is the name given to it today.

It was composed of wood with a bronze finish. Leather is used on the inside. The weight is around 17 lb (8 kg). The shield was adorned with many motifs, including a Gorgon's head. The Spartans (initial of Lacedaemon) frequently employ the sign Lambda as a decoration, whereas the Messenians use the symbol M.

Because metal was costly, the shield was only coated with a thin layer of metal.

Macedonian warriors with a silver-plated shield, including certain Argyraspides officers: Antigenes, Teutamus, and others (similar units used by the Seleucids and Alexander Severus who also included chrysoaspides 'golden shields').

Most Famous And Unique Greek Mythology Weapons

Hermes was the Greek gods' messenger, a power conferred to him by Zeus in an attempt to curb his trickster tendencies. He was granted the Caduceus after being designated messenger. This was not only a prestige symbol, but it also had the ability to affect people's sleeping habits.

Zeus is notorious for his outbursts of rage. The thunderbolt, his weapon, is virtually an embodiment of that rage. The more enraged he became, the more powerful the bolt became.

The trident, which was created by the blacksmith deity Hephaestus, was usually connected with Poseidon. Despite the fact that his brother, Zeus, was the gods' monarch, Poseidon had the great authority of his own.

Though Zeus used thunderbolts as a weapon and a means of expressing his rage, they weren't his primary weapon. He also wielded a golden shield known as the Aegis, which was likewise designed by Hephaestus.

Ancient Greek Military Personal Equipment

Ancient Greek weaponry and armor were primarily designed for solitary battle. The phalanx formations, the configuration consisting of the massed shield wall that needed heavy frontal armor and medium-ranged weaponry such as spears, were their principal tactic.

Greek soldiers were forced to bring their own equipment, which may be costly; however, because there was no official peacekeeping force, most Greek civilians were carrying firearms, as a matter of course, for self-defense. Because individuals contributed their own equipment, the Hellenistic army had a wide range of weapons and armor.

The trident, which was created by the blacksmith deity Hephaestus, was usually connected with Poseidon. Despite the fact that his brother, Zeus, was the gods' monarch, Poseidon had the great authority of his own.

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Written by Oluwatosin Michael

Bachelor of Science specializing in Microbiology

Oluwatosin Michael picture

Oluwatosin MichaelBachelor of Science specializing in Microbiology

With a Bachelor's in Microbiology from the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Oluwatosin has honed his skills as an SEO content writer, editor, and growth manager. He has written articles, conducted extensive research, and optimized content for search engines. His expertise extends to leading link-building efforts and revising onboarding strategies. 

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