CHARIOT
   The chariot was an important instrument of war, particularly during the earlier phases of ancient Near Eastern history. Already for the Early Dynastic period (c. 2500 B.C.), the military use of chariots is widely documented. According to visual evidence from the “Standard of Ur” and the “Stele of Vultures” (see EANNATUM), those early chariots were heavy vehicles with two or four solid wheels, drawn by teams of four donkeys. Their personnel consisted of two men, a driver and a warrior.
   In the second millennium B.C., when horses were introduced by peoples coming from the Central Asian steppes, chariots were adapted to higher speed by reducing their weight and increasing their maneuverability. This was only possible after the invention of the spoked wheel. The military successes of the Hittites, Kassites, and Mitanni are mainly due to the use of quantities of light horse-drawn chariots for attacks. In Egypt, the two-wheeled chariot was introduced by the Hyksos. During the first millennium B.C., the military importance of chariots decreased. As an attack force they were replaced by the cavalry, but they remained an important vehicle for the military elite and for the king. Babylonian and Assyrian monarchs used them on campaigns, during festivals, and on hunting expeditions.
   See also ARMY; WARFARE.

Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia. . 2012.

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  • chariot — Chariot, m. acut. Trisyllab. Semble estre le diminutif de Char, quant à la Dicton: mais quant à la chose signifiée, l effect n y est pas. Car le chariot est fort long, de gros attelage, et est porté sur quatre roües, en quoy il differe de la… …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • chariot — CHARIOT. s. m. Sorte de voiture à quatre roues, propre à porter diverses choses. Chariot de bagage. Chariot de foin. Les chariots d artillerie. Chariots des vivres. f♛/b] Il signifie quelquefois Char. Des chariots armés de faux. Course dechariots …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

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  • chariot — Chariot. s. m. Il signifie quelquefois, Un char. Ainsi, on dit, Le chariot du soleil, Quelquefois les chariots qu on faisoit courir pour remporter le prix, ou dont on se servoit à l armée. Des chariots armez de faux. Le plus souvent il se dit, d… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • Chariot — Char i*ot, n. [F. Chariot, from char car. See {Car}.] 1. (Antiq.) A two wheeled car or vehicle for war, racing, state processions, etc. [1913 Webster] First moved the chariots, after whom the foot. Cowper. [1913 Webster] 2. A four wheeled… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Chariot — Char i*ot, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Charioted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Charioting}.] To convey in a chariot. Milton. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • chariot — (n.) mid 14c., from O.Fr. charriot wagon (13c.), augmentive of char car, from L.L. carrum chariot (see CAR (Cf. car)). Charioteer is attested from late 14c …   Etymology dictionary

  • chariot — [char′ē ət] n. [ME < OFr charriote < char, car < LL carrum: see CAR1] 1. a horse drawn, two wheeled cart used in ancient times for war, racing, parades, etc. 2. a light, four wheeled carriage, used esp. in the 18th cent. for pleasure or… …   English World dictionary

  • Charĭot — (spr. Scharioh), niederländisches Wollgewicht, – 1 Zollcentner 583/4 Pfund …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

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