Strengths & Weaknesses
- Average defensive unit
- Low damage but average armour penetration
- Weak attack
- Poor morale
- Very vulnerable when not in phalanx
Throughout the civilised world, levies formed the backbone of armies. Drawn from the ordinary citizens or subjects, they were in a tradition that, in Greece at least, began with the hoplite warfare of the city-states. What levy pikemen lacked in fighting skills when compared to professionals and mercenaries, they made up for in numbers. Equipped with sarissas, or long pikes, these levy phalanxes were a formidable wall of spear points. Initially, the citizen-levies of Greek city-states were expected to provide their own arms and equipment. As time passed, however, the citizen army developed into a more organised body for which arms and equipment were provided by the state. At the same time, personal loyalty to an individual general or king replaced old-fashioned civic duty.