Praecepta Militaria

(Military maxims)
   Traditional title for a work written by Nikephoros II Phokas (q.v.); the title in Greek is Strategike ekthesis kai syndaxis Nikephorou despotou (Exposition and Treatise on Warfare by the Emperor Nikephoros). It was intended as a practical manual for field commanders; such practical handbooks on military affairs (called strategika [q.v.]) were not uncommon in Byzantium (q.v.). Interestingly, Nikephoros II, whose expertise lay with offensive warfare, and whose favorite part of the army was his kataphraktoi (qq.v.), devotes the first two of six chapters to the use of infantry. Chapters three and four deal with the kataphraktoi, and they conclude with advice on diverse topics, including how to lay out camps and fortify them.

Historical Dictionary of Byzantium . .

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