Jump to content
UNRV Ancient Roman Empire Forums


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by sonic

  1. sonic


    Over the last few months there have been a lot of new members signing in to UNRV. However few of them have posted. So a few basic questions for these individuals. What period of Roman history fascinates you the most? What aspect of that period (e.g. military, emperors, religion) are you most interested in? Are there any specific questions you have yet to find the answers to? Ian
  2. Good luck Peter! You'll need it!!!!
  3. sonic

    What was the most famous Roman legion?

    Caesar's Tenth Legion. It's found in his memoirs and is therefore far more famous than any other!
  4. It's going to feel odd without you running things! Hope the health issues improve and that when the kids are older and you get more time you'll have chance to increase your input to the site again! Good luck Peter. You've got one hell of an act to follow!
  5. sonic

    Gobble gobble

    felix Meleagris gallopavo manducans!
  6. sonic

    The sudden death of Alaric

    Agreed. It is usually impossible to even guess at the cause due to the fact that the sources rarely give enough detail, and where they do it is necessary to analyse the description, as sometimes the portrayal of the death has more to do with the writer's personal agenda rather than an attempt to give an accurate account.
  7. sonic

    Life and times of Flavius Arbogast

    Just read the Wikipedia page on Arbogastes. That is a very odd entry and I'm not convinced of its accuracy. I'm unsure as to Arbogastes being a 'native of Galatia', as apart from Socrates this is not mentioned. As to 'Resided within the Frankish domain as a native of Galatia Minor', this makes no sense at all to me. It just seems to be accepting Socrates' statement at face value and attempting to shoehorn information into a single sentence. The entry reads: [Talking about Eugenius] ‘For associating with himself Arbogastes, a native of Galatia Minor, who then had the command of a division of the army, a man harsh in manner and very bloodthirsty, he determined to usurp the sovereignty.’ (Socrates 5.25 Socrates in translation) I know of no reason for him being 'expelled' from anywhere for any misdemeanour. On the contrary, he is highly praised by Eunapius (frg. 53) and Zosimus (4.33.1-2, 53.1) for his military qualities and his contempt for money (PLRE2). In reality, Arbogast was a Frank who served under Gratian in the West, then Theodosius in the East, before being made Western magister militum by Theodosius after the defeat of Maximus in 388. He later supported Eugenius in the West against Theodosius. You might be interested to note that although a 'Frank', in Gaul he conducted expeditions against the Franks (e.g. Paulin. V Amb. 30).
  8. sonic

    The Fall of Rome - a must-listen podcast

    When I get chance (it's school holidays!) I'll give these a listen!
  9. Didn't Mussolini cause some damage?
  10. Well worth a watch - if only for the English commentator's accent! Seriously, researching what the Romans knew and used - like ball-bearings - leaves you with some idea of what was lost with the 'Dark Ages'.
  11. sonic


    I think for this thread the main sticking point would be the definition of 'evil'. Do you mean that they did things to hurt people on purpose with no 'valid' reason behind it? That they acted in a selfish way in order to get what they wanted, without taking the feelings of others into account? Or their 'atrocities'? Or are you talking about the individuals who ruled and ordered such things? Or some other reason? By defining the term 'evil' you could open the whole debate.
  12. sonic

    Who Killed Germanicus?

    I agree that his writing is easy to read. Sadly, there are mistakes. Try the following review and comments. https://www.amazon.co.uk/review/R13GVHJEGTUDCI/ref=cm_cr_dp_cmt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=1849162301&channel=detail-glance&nodeID=266239&store=books#wasThisHelpful
  13. sonic

    Who Killed Germanicus?

    I have to admit that I am not the greatest fan of Dando-Collins. Many of the claims in his other books appear either far-fetched or simply wrong - especially in his 'Complete Roman Legions. I did a review of his book 'The Great Fire of Rome. http://www.unrv.com/book-review/the-great-fire-of-rome.php (the review has been transferred from the old site, hence the strange punctuation etc.) Although interesting in some ways, his main conclusions don't seem to hold water at all!
  14. sonic

    The Goths and the Huns

    I did a review of Kim's book for UNRV. http://www.unrv.com/book-review/huns.php The majority of the Greuthungi who had remained north of the Danube under Athanaric after the Hunnic war probably remained there when Athanaric sought sanctuary in Constantinople in 381. It is probably these warriors who were led by Valamer, Theodemer and Widimer as allies of the Huns at the Battle of the Catalaunian Plains in 451
  15. "Ferocious Atilla and his ferocious Huns are often blamed for the fall of the Roman Empire" Says it all, really. First there's the misspelling of 'Attila' plus a massive simplification. Then a more balanced article which notes that the Fall was a complex evolution of events where people interacted in an attempt to survive. A reason why I'm not a great fan of lazy journalists! Or should I say, 'Headline Writers'?
  16. sonic

    Itali - The Ancient "Italians"

    If I remember correctly, the trouble is that the period is very badly attested by conflicting reports and opinions. The ancient sources claim they came from the east, or the west, or were the first inhabitants, so the evidence is contradictory. At some point in the distant future I'm hoping to look into this on a 'professional' basis, but at the moment I'm stuck researching Attila the Hun!
  17. What adjustments are you thinking of?
  18. Did for this one, don't think I did for the last- but then, I'm getting old now ....
  19. @Viggen Nice addition. However I didn't get a notification that I was tagged .... Should that happen?
  20. sonic

    Julius Caesar: 15 Things You Didn’t Know

    So the assassins didn't realise that the people liked him? Odd that - the politicians misjudging the feelings of the people!!
  21. Good article. Proves beyond doubt that archaeologists (and possibly historians?) can be blinded by their own assumptions and so discount information they don't think can possibly be correct. A warning to all!!
  22. sonic

    Villanovan Rome and the Kings

    From what I remember there were only very bare bones when it came to the history of early Rome, especially as much of the Roman records were destroyed by the Gallic sack of 386 BCE. As a result, Livy and others also used events recorded by other states in Italy and 'embellished' the events by inserting speeches and (roughly) comparable stories from Greek histories into their own. Again if my memory serves, this was helped by the contemporary belief that individuals with certain characteristics acted in specific and obvious ways. Therefore, a character from Roman history recorded as being greedy and arrogant would act in exactly the same way as somebody in Livy's time who had the same personality. Obviously, the current characters would then be transposed onto the ancient ones in the belief that their actions would be the same. Then again, I could be wrong: my memory's not great! Thanks for the list - I've placed an order!
  23. Hi all. Am thinking of getting back into the earliest period of Roman history. Can anyone tell me the best new (i.e. c.AD 2000 and later) books/articles with the latest thinking on the earliest periods? Cheers Ian
  24. I second that statement. Have a good holiday people!
  25. Just read the (Damn long!) article and have to say I agree with a lot of it. Quite a lot of it links with the reasons behind some at least of the Brexit vote. It wasn't that people were always violently anti-European, it was that certain portions of the media stirred up "Anti-European Regulations" amongst the semi-interested. Those who were really interested investigated and found that the vast majority of the claims were rubbish, so dismissed them. A lot of people didn't. In addition, the Exit vote was largely from those areas in England and Wales that have suffered since WW2 from the dismantling of traditional industry and the lack of jobs - as all of the 'replacement' jobs tended to be in the cities rather than the towns. I know this from personal experience, having spent a long time unemployed. Looking at the public-school elite who run the country makes me angry, simply because they appear to be mass-produced and although they stand for different political parties (think David Cameron and Ed Miliband) they both struggle to communicate with the 'ordinary' people in the UK. We are discounted. That is one of the reasons why people voted against them. In effect, Brexit was in part a protest vote against a narrow ruling elite based in the middle class with no connection with the reality of working-class problems. The article suggests that the same is true - again at least in part - in the US, where part of Trump's appeal lies in the fact that he does not communicate in the same way as Clinton et al, and so appeals to a 'working class' which feels its problems and fears are being ignored. As to the 'Democracies' part of the thread, they only seem to end when a demagogue arises who plays on peoples' fears to the extent that he can subvert the system to the point where he can assume total control. This can really ONLY happen in a democracy, as it is only in a democracy where he can achieve power by the 'will of the people'. Otherwise, his rise must be violent and arouse the likelihood of violent opposition. Having said all of that, it should be remembered that in reality many factors influenced the outcome of both votes, and that the rise of Hitler in Germany (the last major Western democracy to end) was easier because of the ill-feeling towards politicians caused by the end of WW1 and the fragmented nature of politics in the Weimar Republic. Hopefully, in both the UK and the US anger towards the political system has not yet reached the point where one man can overthrow it.