Feed on
Posts
Comments

Advantages of Infantrymen

In the preface Machiavelli states that “It is not impossible to bring the military back to ancient modes and give it some form of past virtue.”(preface. 10) In the Art of War the two men who are speaking, Fabrizio and Cosimo pay every close attention to the differences between infantrymen and cavalrymen, both ancient and modern.

Fabrizio Colonna, a military man makes the statement that” the sinew of armies without any doubt is the infantry” but also a king must make his infantrymen happy in times of peace and war because “ a more dangerous infantry is not found when than that which is composed of those who make war as their art.”(1.82-83) Cosimo Rucellai, who has no military experience   makes the claim that unlike cavalrymen, the infantrymen can be used even in times of peace because foot soldiers are always needed to guard a city, “all men of arms remain with their provisions … many infantrymen stay in the guard of cities and fortresses; so that it seems to me that there is a place for each in time of peace.”(1.95) This claim that Fabrizio then denies by implying that a city would only keep cavalrymen,” keeping men- at – arms is a corrupt mode and not good” (1.99), Fabrizio continues to discourage this practice by pointing out that the men in ancient times would have a cavalry in times of war but would disband and send the men “to their homes to live off their arts “in times of peace. (1.104)

Next Fabrizio speaks of where the soldiers should come from. He begins by stating that a principality or republic should recruit “soldiers from its own countries be they warm or cold or temperate.”(1.123) The troops should come from one’s own because the next option would be to hire foreigners, but the problem with that is that” foreign arms can do more damage to the public good more quickly than one’s own.”(1.173) He goes on the pronounce that “it is better to select them from the country, since they are men used to hardship, raised amidst toils, accustomed to being in the sun, fleeing the shade, knowing how to work a tool, … and being without astuteness or malice” (1.141) By them he is speaking of the infantrymen and that the cavalry should be selected from the cities because coming from cities, they are not used to the hard labor like countrymen.

Looking to the ancients as an example of great infantrymen Fabrizio says that “the Romans divided their infantries into heavy and light armed” (2.2), based on what arms they carried. Fabrizio most emulates the Romans because “Roman arms, with which they occupied all the world. When asked by Cosimo who is superior the ancient Romans or modern Germans in their modes of fighting, to which Fabrizio states that” The Roman without a doubt.”(2.35) He affirms this reasoning by explaining why modern armies should model themselves after the Romans,” you will find in the German ability to beat cavalrymen … but a great disadvantage when it fights with an infantry armed liked the Romans.”(2.43) The Romans were great because of the way their army good defeat both cavalrymen and infantrymen, where the Germans could only overpower a cavalry. (2.44) However, “a good infantry must not only be able to withstand cavalrymen, but it must not be afraid of infantrymen.”(2.67) Another reason why infantrymen are superior to cavalrymen is because of their “natural virtue”. (2.86) The drawback of an infantry is that they are more corrupt than cavalrymen.

Going into further detail about who should become a cavalryman and how they should be trained, Fabrizio said that modern people should look to the ancients because “the levy was made from the wealthiest, having a regard for both years and the quality of man” but he later more specifically speaks of the Romans when he declares “I would imitate the Romans … give them heads in the mode in which they are given to the others today, and I would arm and train them.”(1.266) Cavalry are needed in an army but only second to infantry, because” cavalrymen cannot go every place like infantrymen. They are slower to obey than infantrymen when their orders happen to vary” the second part is because cavalrymen also have to maintain a horse as well as follow orders.(2.87-88) Lastly Fabrizio says that any army should contain cavalrymen but” as the second and not as the first foundation of one’s army. They are necessary and useful for scouting, overrunning, and wasting the enemy’s country”(2.79) A plus for cavalrymen is that they are less corrupt,” Of horse I want to say nothing but… this part is less corrupt”(7.185)

All in all a  modern army that wants  to follow in the footsteps of the ancients should have both an infantry and cavalry, but make sure that the infantry comes first because they are the sinew of armies. That being said, cavalrymen do have their purposes, and they are less corrupt compared to infantryman. Lastly Fabrizio paints a picture of where a king or republic should levy their soldiers from; cavalry being drawn from the country and cavalrymen being drawn from cities.

 

20 Responses to “Advantages of Infantrymen”

  1. Blogs ou should be reading

    […]Here is a Great Blog You Might Find Interesting that we Encourage You[…]…

  2. Online Article…

    […]The information mentioned in the article are some of the best available […]…

  3. Check this out

    […] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[…]…

  4. Awesome website

    […]the time to read or visit the content or sites we have linked to below the[…]…

  5. You should check this out

    […] Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a few unrelated data, nevertheless really worth taking a look, whoa did one learn about Mid East has got more problerms as well […]…

  6. Online Article…

    […]The information mentioned in the article are some of the best available […]…

  7. Websites worth visiting

    […]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[…]…

  8. Gems form the internet

    […]very few websites that happen to be detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly well worth checking out[…]…

  9. Superb website

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[…]…

  10. rpmotorsport says:

    Visitor recommendations

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]…

  11. Visitor recommendations

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]…

  12. Links

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]…

  13. Visitor recommendations

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]…

  14. click here says:

    Superb website

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[…]…

  15. Visitor recommendations

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]…

  16. WWW.SOLIX.NO says:

    Visitor recommendations

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]…

  17. Blogs ou should be reading

    […]Here is a Great Blog You Might Find Interesting that we Encourage You[…]…

  18. subsidie nam says:

    Websites you should visit

    […]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[…]…

  19. Websites worth visiting

    […]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[…]…

  20. see here says:

    Websites we think you should visit

    […]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[…]…