Who Has the Best Army in Ancient Times?

Throughout history, many empires and kingdoms have boasted about their military might, claiming to have the best army in the world. But who truly had the most powerful army in ancient times? Let’s take a look at some of the contenders.

The Roman Empire

The Roman Empire is often considered one of the greatest military powers in history. Their army was well-trained and disciplined, with a strict hierarchy and organized formations. The Roman legions were known for their impressive tactics, such as the famous “turtle” formation which provided excellent protection against enemy arrows and spears.


  • Well-trained soldiers
  • Disciplined hierarchy
  • Impressive tactics


  • Reliant on conquest for expansion
  • Frequent internal conflict and political turmoil
  • Vulnerable to guerrilla warfare tactics

The Persian Empire

The Persian Empire was one of the most powerful empires of its time. Their army was vast and diverse, consisting of soldiers from various regions and cultures.

The Persians were known for their archers, who could fire arrows with deadly accuracy from horseback. They also had skilled cavalry and heavily armored infantry.


  • Diverse army with skilled archers and cavalry
  • Well-equipped with advanced weaponry such as scythed chariots
  • Tolerance towards conquered peoples allowed them to assimilate local troops into their army.


  • Limited naval power

The Macedonian Empire

Under the leadership of Alexander the Great, the Macedonian Empire conquered much of the known world. Alexander was a brilliant military strategist and his army was highly trained and disciplined. They were known for their use of cavalry and innovative tactics such as the “hammer and anvil” formation.


  • Well-trained soldiers
  • Innovative tactics
  • Highly mobile cavalry units


  • Reliant on Alexander’s leadership; fell apart after his death

The Chinese Empire

The ancient Chinese empire had one of the most advanced armies in the world at its time. Their soldiers were highly trained in martial arts and their weapons were some of the most sophisticated of their time. The Chinese also had a powerful navy, with ships that could carry hundreds of soldiers.


  • Sophisticated weapons
  • Well-trained in martial arts
  • Powerful navy


  • Vulnerable to steppe nomad invasions from northern borders.


While each empire had its own strengths and weaknesses, it is difficult to definitively say which had the best army in ancient times. Factors such as size, tactics, and leadership all played a role in determining military success. However, it is clear that these empires are still studied today for their impressive military achievements.