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The Phalanx is an early defensive military unit.
A military formation developed in Greece and perfected in Macedonia, the Phalanx was a large block of men in ranks and files, generally ranging from 8 to 32 men deep. All were armed with long pikes. The first five ranks of men presented their pikes outward, forming a bristling barrier of spearpoints, while the others kept their pikes upright to deflect missiles. An enemy had difficulty closing with the men behind the pikes. On the attack, the enemy was faced with this densely-packed body of pikemen advancing, often at the run, and usually had to give ground or risk being impaled en masse.