10 Most Decisive Ancient Generals

2. Spahbod Surena

Battle of Carrhae (Losses ratio 1:300) Spahbod Surena was a Parthian general and member of the House of Surena that ruled Parthia since 3rd BC. The Battle of Carrhae took place in the in the present-day ruins Harran, Turkey. Parthians mainly fielded cataphracts (heavy cavalry) and house archers. Crassus’ light cavalrymen were unable to pierce the thick armor of cataphracts and his infantry formations were continuously harassed by Parthians nimble horse archers. 20,000 Romans soldiers were killed and 10,000 were captured, while Parthians only lost 100 men. Crassus was captured and paraded in a humiliating woman clothing. Another huge morale setback for the Romans, was the capture of the legionary standard (golden Aquilae), which took decades of negotiations before the Parthians returned them to Rome. The battle actually contributed to increased trade between Europe and Far East, bringing in exotic items like silk from China.