Battle of Gaugamela

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Scene of Arbela
Scene of the Battle of Gaugamela. Engraving from 1913.
The charge of the Persian scythed chariots at the Battle of Gaugamela, by Andre Castaigne (1898-1899).

The Battle of Gaugamela (also called The Battle of Arbela) was a battle fought between Alexander the Great and the first Persian empire. The battle was fought in 331 BC. It was in Gaugamela, a village on the banks of the river Bumodus, north of Arbela (modern-day Erbil, in Iraqi Kurdistan). It led to the fall of the Achaemenid Empire and of Darius III.[1]

Before this Darius had lost the Battle of Issus where his wife, his mother and his two daughters were captured.

Alexander's small army, about 47,000, had marched through Mesopotamia. The Persian army was certainly bigger, though there is no agreement about how big it was. They had 15 Indian elephants and some scythed chariots - war chariots with scythe blades mounted on each side. These didnt make much difference.

After the battle Darius was murdered by Bessus, the Satrap of Bactria.

References[change | change source]

  1. Marciak, M.; Szypuła, B.; Sobiech, M.; Pirowski, T. (2021). "The Battle of Gaugamela and the Question of Visibility on the Battlefield". Iraq. 83: 87–103. doi:10.1017/irq.2021.11. S2CID 240824299.