I understand for most of history, countries seldom kept standing armies and most often troops were only called upon in times of war. The reasons for this, as I understand it, are mostly cost-- it's expensive to mantain a military force. That being said, I don't want a standing army, I want the nation's ruler to have a household "guard" much as the Ottoman sultan had the Janissaries. Of course, these elite troops would be more than a simple guard, they would participate in select military operations and accompany the King to battle. Is it feasible in a vaguely Hellenistic island archipelago, where regular armies are composed of citizen volunteers, auxiliary troops from vassal lands, and sometimes (in dire times) conscripts assembled only in times of war, for the king to keep a household force of 1,500 men? There would be 750 heavy infantry, 250 cavalry (leather and spears), 250 skirmishers, and 250 archers. The capital city has maybe 400,000 people, the next largest city half that. The countryside is fairly fertile, though steep hills render the very interior nearly impossible to farm. Fishing is plentiful. I'm wondering if such a permanent force is possible under the circumstances, what might prevent it, and what else I might need to consider in the portrayal and design of the guard.