Introduction: Zagros, Taurus & Anatolian Highlanders

Our Hail Caesar miniatures range covers a huge swathe of the Ancient period – and with such an array of modes on offer, Cutting Edge Miniatures owner Peter Womack has kindly offered some help to those looking to represent the specific armies of this age.

This week, we take a closer look at Zagros, Taurus, and the Anatoian Highlanders – over to Peter!


The Early figures can be used to build Gutian, Lullubian, Turukkean, early Hurrian and other Zagros, Taurus, Caucasus & Anatolian Highlander armies of the Early Bronze Age, who were both enemies and allies of the urbanised city-states of Mesopotamia and Syria.

Anubanini Relief

Sar-e Pol-e Zahab, Anubanini Relief

Bodyguard Early Highlanders in some army lists specify warriors with both axe and bow. This can be represented by using figures from both packs of Early Highlander Axemen and Early Highlander Archers. Alternatively, the Early Household Axemen and Early Household Archers can be used.


The Early Highlander figures can also be used for the Early Bronze Age Hattians (predecessors of the Hittites) of central Anatolia and indeed mixed in with any of the Early Levy Javelinmen, Archers or Slingers for any of the nomadic or Highlander armies of the Early Bronze Age.

It was the Gutians who brought down the Akkadian Empire at the end of the Early Bronze Age, though interestingly, the term ‘Gutian’ was still being used by settled states to describe Zagros Highlanders long after their demise and into the Late Bronze Age, yet the appearance of Highlanders would more have resembled those of the Later Highlanders by this time.

The Later figures can be used to model the Middle and Late Bronze Age Highlander armies. These include the Turukkeans, who were related to the Hurrians, and the early Kassites, who were the successors of the Gutians and Lullubians in the Zagros Mountains. In northern Anatolia there were the Gasgans or Kaskans and in north-east Anatolia, the Azzi-Hayasa confederation. In the Taurus Mountains in the south-east, there was the Kizzuwatna; and in the east, the Isuwa. However, as Hittite power began to rise in the Late Bronze Age many of these states were subjugated and incorporated into the Hittite Empire. The figures suitable for Gasgans and other Anatolians of the Late Bronze Age can also be found in the Early Hittite and Hittite Empire lists.

By the end of the Middle Bronze Age, some tribes, such as the Hurrians and Kassites, had begun to settle and merge with or establish their own cities. More settled levies began to form a proportion of the Later Highlander armies, and as such, the Levy Javelinmen, Levy Archers and Levy Slingers should be mixed in with the Later Highlander figures for Highlander armies of this period.

The Hurrians went onto found the Kingdom of Mitanni in the Late Bronze Age, and which will form a separate range of figures.

The Kassites, who were closely related to the Hurrians and other eastern Anatolian Highlanders, went onto conquer Babylonia and Elam and establish a dynasty. They were eventually defeated by the Elamites at the end of the Late Bronze Age but then retreated into their original homeland of Luristan. The Hurrians of Mitanni did likewise at the fall of their Kingdom, but with the Kassites, formed a new kingdom of Urartu which came to prominence in the Iron Age.

As such, the Later Highlander range is suitable for Late Bronze Age Zagros Mountain tribes such as early Urartians, Mannai and those of the Nairi lands. Whether of Iranian or non-Iranian descent, their appearance would have remained the same into the Iron Age.

Zagros and Iranian Highlanders of the Iron Age will, however, form a separate ranges of figures, including Mannaians, Urartians and Medes.



If you’re new to wargaming throughout the Ancient era, head over to the Warlord webstore – where you’ll find a library of articles which cover everything from historical information, hobby guides, gaming tips, battle reports and much more!


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