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Image:Brazilian Tapuia.jpg
17th Century Brazilian Tapuia

A warrior is a person habitually engaged in warfare. In tribal societies engaging in endemic warfare, warriors often form a caste or class of their own. In feudalism, the vassals essentially form a military or warrior class, even if in actual warfare, peasants may be called to fight as well. In some societies, warfare may be so central that the entire people (or, more often, the male population) may be considered warriors, for example, Montenegrins or Germanic tribes.

Professional warriors are people who are paid money for engaging in military campaigns and fall into one of two categories: Soldiers, when fighting on behalf of their own state; or mercenaries, when offering their services commercially and unrelated to their own nationality. The classification of somebody who is involved in acts of violence may be a matter of perspective, and there may be disagreement whether a given person is a hooligan, a gangster, a terrorist, a rebel, a freedom fighter, a mercenary or a soldier.

In 1937 Georges Dumézil famously speculated that Proto-Indo-European society was composed of a priestly class, a warrior class, and a class of commoners or peasants. The Hindu society is based on these lines, composing of the Brahmins (priests), the Kshatriya (warriors), the Vaishya (business class) and the Shudras (servants). In contemporary Jungian psychology, the warrior is often seen as a key archetype of masculinity.


[edit] Warrior code

In many societies in which a specialized warrior class exists, specific codes of conduct (ethical codes) are instituted in order to ensure that the warrior class is not dangerous to the rest of society. Warrior codes often have common features and usually value loyalty, courage, and honour. Examples include the Kshatriya code of Dharma, Japanese samurai Bushido and medieval knights' code of chivalry.

[edit] Warrior culture

A warrior culture is a civilization that heavily emphasizes battle and war and greatly prizes feats of arms. Warrior cultures often incorporate a cult of personality around military leaders.

Examples of societies in history that could be designated as warrior cultures include:

Fictional societies depicted as warrior cultures include:

Feudal societies are not always warrior cultures, since though feats of arms are prized there is not necessarily an emphasis on battle and war. In some feudal societies, the soldiery was provided through conscription of the peasant class.

[edit] References

  • King, Warrior, Magican, Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine by Robert Moore and Douglass Gillette (San Francisco: Harper, 1990).

[edit] See also


nl:Krijger (strijder) no:Kriger pl:Wojownik pt:Guerreiro sr:Ратник fi:Soturi sv:Krigare


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