A polemarch (from _gr. πολέμαρχος, "polemarchos") was a senior military title in various ancient Greek
city states ("poleis"). The title is composed out of the "polemos" (war) and "archon" (ruler/leader) and translates as "warleader" or "warlord".
The most famous "polemarchos" is probably the Athenian "archōn polemarchos". He was of the magistrates called
archons. Originally, the polemarch was a commander of the army, but after 487/ 486 BC, when the Athenian magistrates were appointed by lot, the military duties were handled by the "strategoi". This office also had religious and legal functions.
In the new structure of the
Spartan Armyintroduced sometime in the Peloponnesian War, a "polemarchos" was the commander of a "mora" of 576 men, one of six in the Spartan army on campaign.(Xenophon, Rep. Lac. XI 4.) On occasion however they were appointed to head armies. The six Spartan "polemarchoi" seem to have been on equal power to kings at expeditions outside Laconiaand were usually descendants of the royal houses (Herodotus, VII 173.) They were part of the royal army council and the royal escort (δαμοσία) (Xenophon, Hell. VI 4 § 14.) The were supported or representation by officers (συμφορεῖς). The polemarchoi were also responsible for public meals, since, by the laws of Lycurgus, the Lacedaemonianswould eat and fight in the same group. Next to their military and connected responsibilities, the "polemarchoi" were responsible for some civil and juridical tasks (not unlike the "archōn polemarchos" in Athens).
Boeotian cities used the office of "polemarchos" for the leader of their military forces. Thebes for instance had two - possibly annually elected - "polemarchoi".
In modern use, some fraternities, notably
Kappa Alpha Psi, label their chapters' leaders as Polemarchs.
This position was featured in
Orson Scott Card's novel " Ender's Game". In the novel, the position of Polemarch was charged with the supreme command of humanity's space fleets. The Polemarch, along with the positions of Strategosand Hegemon, was one of the three most powerful people alive. Because of a belief in their inherent luck and brilliance, all three positions were originally filled with Jewish people — an American Jew as Hegemon, an Israeli Jew as Strategos, and a Russian Jew as Polemarch — but by the time of the Formic defeat, this superstition had died.
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Polemarch — Pol e*march, n. [Gr. ?; ? war + ? leader, from ? to be first.] (Gr. Antiq.) In Athens, originally, the military commanderin chief; but, afterward, a civil magistrate who had jurisdiction in respect of strangers and sojourners. In other Grecian… … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
polemarch — (n.) commander of the army, 1570s, from Gk. polemarkhos, from polemos war + arkhos leader, chief, ruler (see ARCHON (Cf. archon)) … Etymology dictionary
Polemarch — Po|le|march* der; en, en <aus gleichbed. gr. polémarchos, eigtl. »Kriegsführer«, zu pólemos »Krieg« bzw. polemeĩn »Krieg führen« u. árchein »vorangehen, führen«> Titel der mit der Leitung des Militärwesens u. mit dem Heereskommando… … Das große Fremdwörterbuch
polemarch — pol·e·march … English syllables
polemarch — ˈpäləˌmärk noun ( s) Etymology: Greek polemarchos, from polemos war + archos ruler more at archi : a chieftain or military commander in ancient Greece; especially : the third archon in ancient Athens presiding at the court and having jurisdiction … Useful english dictionary
Callimachus (polemarch) — Callimachus (Καλλίμαχος) was polemarch in Athens in 490 BC, and was one of the commanders at the Battle of Marathon.As polemarch, Callimachus had a vote in military affairs along with the 10 strategoi , the generals, such as Miltiades. Miltiades… … Wikipedia
Kappa Alpha Psi — ] are Kappa League, Jr. Kappa League, A MAN Program, [ cite web |url=http://www.aman.org/KappaInfo/Kappahome.html |title=Kappa Alpha Psi, Inc. Partners with A MAN, Inc. To Promote Interest In Science and Technology Among Youth |publisher=A MAN,… … Wikipedia
Archon — For other uses, see Archon (disambiguation). Depiction from the east frieze of the Parthenon, of an assumed Archon Basileus, a remnant title of the Greek monarchy Archon (Gr. ἄρχων, pl. ἄρχοντες) is a Greek word that means ruler or lord ,… … Wikipedia
List of International Fleet personnel — This is a list of characters from the fictional International Fleet organization in Orson Scott Card s Ender s Game series. Contents 1 Chamrajnagar 2 Hyrum Graff 3 Mazer Rackham 3.1 Ender Quarte … Wikipedia
Archon of Athens — This is a list of the eponymous archons of Athens. BackgroundThe archon was the chief magistrate in many Greek cities, but in Athens there was a council of archons which comprised a form of executive government. From the late eighth century BC,… … Wikipedia