From the Latin warriors on the Palatine Hill in the age of Romulus, to the last defenders of Constantinople in 1453 AD, the weaponry of the Roman Army was constantly evolving. Through glory and defeat, the Roman warrior adapted to the changing face of warfare. Due to the immense size of the Roman Empire, which reached from the British Isles to the Arabian Gulf, the equipment of the Roman soldier varied greatly from region to region.Through the use of materials such as leather, linen and felt, the army was able to adjust its equipment to these varied climates. Arms and Armour of the Imperial Roman Soldier sheds new light on the many different types of armour used by the Roman soldier, and combines written and artistic sources with the analysis of old and new archaeological finds. With a huge wealth of plates and illustrations, which include ancient paintings, mosaics, sculptures and coin depictions, this book gives the reader an unparalleled visual record of this fascinating period of military history. This book, the first of three volumes, examines the period from Marius to Commodus. Volume II covers the period from Commodus to Justinian, and Volume III will look at the period from Romulus to Marius.
From the Latin warriors on the Palatine Hill in the age of Romulus, to the last defenders of Constantinople in 1453 AD, the weaponry of the Roman Army was constantly evolving. Through glory and defeat, the Roman warrior adapted to the changing face of warfare. Due to the immense size of the Roman Empire, which reached fromthe British Isles to the Arabian Gulf, the equipment of the Roman soldier varied greatly from region to region.Through the use of materials such as leather, linen and felt, the army was able to adjust its equipment to these varied climates. Arms and Armour of the Imperial Roman Soldier sheds new light on the many different types of armour used by the Roman soldier, and combines written and artistic sources with the analysis of old and new archaeological finds. With a huge wealth of plates and illustrations, which include ancient paintings, mosaics, sculptures and coin depictions, this book gives the reader an unparalleled visual record of this fascinating period of military history.This book, the first of three volumes, examines the period from Marius to Commodus. Volume II covers the period from Commodus to Justinian, and Volume III will look at the period from Romulus to Marius.
An analysis of ancient Greek, Roman, and Macedonian winning battle formations, from why they worked, the equipment and men used, and how they broke down. Justin Swanton examines the principal battle-winning formations of the ancient world, determining their composition, function and efficacy. An introductory chapter looks at the fundamental components of the principal battle formations of heavy and light infantry, cavalry, elephants and chariots, showing how they bolstered the individual's soldier's willingness to fight. The rest of the book focuses on massed infantry that reigned supreme in this era: the heavily armored Greek hoplite phalanx that was immune to the weaponry of its non-Greek opponents; the Macedonian pike phalanx that was unbeatable against frontal attacks so long as it kept order; the Roman triplex acies which, contrary to popular opinion, consisted of continuous lines in open order, with file spaces wide enough to allow embattled infantry to fall back after which those files closed up instantly against the enemy. A careful study of the Greek and Latin of the sources sheds fresh light on how these formations were organized and worked, reevaluating many conventional notions and leading to some surprising conclusions. Praise for Ancient Battle Formations “This book is both important for its thoroughly researched, original and well-argued historical conclusions and an enjoyable read. Highly recommended.” —Professor F. Noel Zaal (BA, LLB University of Natal, LLM Durban-Westville, LLM Columbia, PhD Wits
The reigns of Augustus and his successor Tiberius saw an epic struggle between the Romans and local peoples for the territory between the Rhine and Elbe rivers in what is now Germany. Following two decades of Roman occupation, Germania Magna erupted into revolt in AD 9 following the loss of the three legions commanded by Publius Quinctilius Varus to the Cheruscan nobleman Arminius and an alliance of Germanic nations in the dense forests of the Teutoburger Wald. The Romans' initial panic subsided as it became clear that Arminius and his allies could not continue the war into Germania Inferior on the western bank of the Rhine, and Imperial troops poured into the region as the Romans decided how best to resolve the situation. Featuring full-colour artwork, specially drawn maps and an array of revealing illustrations depicting weapons, equipment, key locations and personalities, this study offers key insights into the tactics, leadership, combat performance and subsequent reputations of the Roman soldiers and their Germanic opponents pitched into a series of pivotal actions on the Imperial frontier that would influence Roman/German relations for decades to come.
Between the reigns of Augustus and Septimius Severus, the Eastern provinces of the Roman Empire frequently saw brutal fighting, most notably during the conquest of Dacia by Trajan, the suppression of the Great Revolt in Judea and intermittent clashes with Rome's great rival Parthia. In these wars, Roman soldiers had to fight in a range of different climates and terrains, from the deserts of the Middle East to the islands of the eastern Mediterranean. Using full-colour artwork, this book examines the variation of equipment and uniforms both between different military units, and in armies stationed in different regions of the Empire. Using evidence drawn from recent archaeological finds, it paints a vivid portrait of Roman army units in the Eastern provinces in the first two centuries of the Imperial period.
At its height the Roman Empire stretched across Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, maintained by an army of modest size but great diversity. In popular culture these soldiers are often portrayed in a generic fashion, but continuing research indicates significant variations in Roman armour and equipment not only between different legions and the provincially-raised auxiliary cohorts that made up half of the army, but also between different regions within the empire. With reference to the latest archaeological and documentary evidence Dr D'Amato investigates how Roman Army units in the Western provinces were equipped, exploring the local influences and traditions that caused the variations in attire.
Combing a researcher's skill at finding unexpected connections in everyday events and a historian's knowledge of source material, Lindsay Powell takes a clear eyed and often witty look at modern times through the longer perspective of ancient history.
“This book represents the fruit of many years of study by a well respected author in the field. It is well written so as to be very readable for the non-academic while presenting a huge, and surely definitive, array of evidence” – Roman Army Talk on Roman Military Dress “An excellent and informative book from a very knowledgeable author” – Amazon.co.uk on Roman Military Dress Gathering together stunning artwork from Graham Sumner’s impressive, expansive portfolio, featuring never-before-seen illustrations from the artist and reminding us of his exceptional ability to bring Ancient Rome to life through painting, this colorful, comprehensive anthology is a must-have for any enthusiast of the period, and of military history in general. Introduced with a foreword by best-selling historian and author Adrian Goldsworthy, Sumner’s beautiful color reconstructions of Ancient Roman warriors over time are complemented expertly with informative, enlightening text by eminent historian and author Simon Elliott. This combination of Sumner’s illustrations and Elliott’s writing leaves no stone unturned as they divulge information about this fascinating period of military history in mesmerising, intricate detail. Readers will swiftly become fully immersed in this ancient world, and will leave it with a wealth of knowledge about and a profound understanding of the warriors of Ancient Rome, and a great appreciation for Sumner and Elliott’s expertise in the area.
In the years between 31 BC and AD 500 the Romans carved out a mighty empire stretching from Britain to the deserts of North Africa. The men who spearheaded this expansion were the centurions, the tough, professional warriors who led from the front, exerted savage discipline and provided a role model for the legionaries under their command. This book, the second volume of a two-part study, reveals the appearance, weaponry, role and impact of these legendary soldiers during the five centuries that saw the Roman Empire reach its greatest geographical extent under Trajan and Hadrian, only to experience a long decline in the West in the face of sustained pressure from its 'barbarian' neighbours. Featuring spectacular full-colour artwork, written by an authority on the army of the Caesars and informed by a wide range of sculptural, written and pictorial evidence from right across the Roman world, this book overturns established wisdom and sheds new light on Rome's most famous soldiers during the best-known era in its history.
A comprehensive guide to this remarkable ancient fighting force: “Groundbreaking insights into the Roman military . . . sumptuously illustrated.” —Love Reading The Roman military machine was pre-eminent in ancient times, projecting power across the known world over a vast chronology, and an increasingly huge and diverse geography. One of the most powerful instruments of war in the history of conflict, it proved uniquely adept at learning from setbacks, always coming back the stronger for it. In so doing, it displayed two of the most important traits associated with the world of Rome. Firstly grit, that key ability to remain steadfast and to overcome adversity even in the most challenging of circumstances, as faced for example by the Republic in the Second Punic War against Hannibal. Secondly, the ability to copy the successful technical and tactical innovations of their enemies, enabling the Roman military to always stay one step ahead of its opponents on campaign and in battle. In this grand tour, covering every aspect of the Roman military, leading expert Dr. Simon Elliott first provides a detailed background to the Roman Republic and Empire to provide context for all that follows. He then looks specifically at the Roman military in its three key chronological phases: the Republic, the Principate Empire, and the Dominate Empire. Next he forensically examines specific instances of the Roman military on campaign and in battle, and of its engineering prowess. Finally, he investigates the many enemies faced by the Roman Republic and Empire. This all provides a firm structure to enable the reader to come to grips with this incredible military machine, one whose exploits still resonate in the world to this very day.
Legio IX Hispana had a long and active history, later founding York from where it guarded the northern frontiers in Britain. But the last evidence for its existence in Britain comes from AD 108. The mystery of their disappearance has inspired debate and imagination for decades. The most popular theory, immortalized in Rosemary Sutcliffe’s novel The Eagle of the Ninth, is that the legion was sent to fight the Caledonians in Scotland and wiped out there. But more recent archaeology (including evidence that London was burnt to the ground and dozens of decapitated heads) suggests a crisis, not on the border but in the heart of the province, previously thought to have been peaceful at this time. What if IX Hispana took part in a rebellion, leading to their punishment, disbandment and damnatio memoriae (official erasure from the records)? This proposed ‘Hadrianic War’ would then be the real context for Hadrian’s ‘visit’ in 122 with a whole legion, VI Victrix, which replaced the ‘vanished’ IX as the garrison at York. Other theories are that it was lost on the Rhine or Danube, or in the East. Simon Elliott considers the evidence for these four theories, and other possibilities.
A concise and entertaining explanation of how other accounts, and popular culture such as films, have misrepresented medieval warfare. We don't know how medieval soldiers fought. Did they just walk forward in their armor smashing each other with their maces and poleaxes for hours on end, as depicted on film and in programs such as Game of Thrones? They could not have done so. It is impossible to fight in such a manner for more than several minutes as exhaustion becomes a preventative factor. Indeed, we know more of how the Roman and Greek armies fought than we do of the 1300 to 1550 period. So how did medieval soldiers in the War of the Roses, and in the infantry sections of battles such as Agincourt and Towton, carry out their grim work? Medieval Military Combat shows, for the first time, the techniques of such battles. It also breaks new ground in establishing medieval battle numbers as highly exaggerated, and that we need to look again at the accounts of actions such as the famous Battle of Towton, which this work uses as a basic for its overall study.