…he was informed that Porus, with the whole of his army, was on the other side of that river…

The twelfth annual Society of Ancients Battle Day
Saturday 28 March 2015
Sycamore Hall, Drayton Road, Bletchley, Near Milton Keynes, MK2 3RR

The Hydaspes 326 BC

Upon this, the drivers of the elephants urged forward the beasts against the cavalry but now the phalanx itself of the Macedonians was advancing against the elephants, the men casting darts at the riders and also striking the beasts themselves, standing round them on all sides. The action was unlike any of the previous contests; for wherever the beasts could wheel round, they rushed forth against the ranks of infantry and demolished the phalanx of the Macedonians, dense as it was.
Macedonians meet elephants in battle for the first time, from Arrian’s Anabasis, found online at

For our twelfth annual Battle Day, we once again invite you to a unique day’s wargaming.

The battle: The Hydaspes 326 BC – the invading force of Alexander the Great and his all-conquering but war-weary Macedonians are met on the banks of the River Hydaspes by the Indian army of King Porus.

So sharpen your sarissas and xystons and prepare to fight one last battle for glory with Alexander, or fight to repel the invaders atop elephants and chariots with the brave King Porus.

The aims of the day remain the same:
· To have fun!
· To gather as many ancient and medieval wargamers as possible to refight a historical battle.
· To fight the same battle simultaneously on many tables, using a different set of rules on each table.

The day will run from 9am until 5pm, with an hour either side to set up and pack away.

Phil Sabin, Professor of Strategic Studies at King’s College, London, but better known to Society of Ancients members as the innovative game designer and author of the book Lost Battles, will be giving a pre-battle introduction to the Hydapes, putting it in its historical context and highlighting the controversial aspects of the battle.

And of course, The Society of Ancients will be awarding a number of prizes (for various criteria, some more frivolous than others) to the wargamers on the day, including prizes for Best Game and Best Terrain.

To offer to stage a game – contact Richard Lockwood at
battleday@soa.org.uk or else via his details in Slingshot. But in any case, come along and take part as a player.

The cost of participating in the Battle Day, to contribute towards hire of venue and tables, will be held once again at £7 (juniors free), as it has been for ten years now.

Every year it just gets better and better – this really should be a regular event on your calendar. Don’t miss out – come and be part of it!

The Battle Day is open to both members and non-members of the Society of Ancients.