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Legio X

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  1. The diagonal battle line means not that the front troops were in diagonal to the enemy's front lines, but that the Thebans had put more lines of soldiers on one side than on the other, giving them more pushing strength than usual and thus causing a faster break of the enemy line on that side, allowing the Thebans to roll the side of the Spartans and thus win the battle. Usual battle formation was about 8 men deep, at Leuctre the Thebans had 16 men deep formations on part of the line (if I remember well, my books are still in bags and cases) and could thus more easily roll the Spartan left, before the Spartan's right could break the Theban left.

    But in that case the Spartans should have rolled up the Theban left wing before, as the Spartans (probaly) had much stronger and more experienced soldiers...

  2. As far as I know the only source we have for the overwhelming odds he repeatedly overcame in Gaul is, errr Caesar.
    I know his own "diary" was a major source of our knowledge about the campaign against the Gauls. but is Caesar's writings the only source of our knowledge of the war really?


    Caesar's commentaries on his Gallic adventure were not for his own private use (as in a diary), but for political propaganda. It's useful to note in this context that Caesar refers to himself in the third person ("Caesar", "he") and not in the first person ("I"). Unless Caesar were quite mad, it's unlikely he'd use the third person for himself in his own diaries. (Though this is someone who claimed to be a descendent of Venus...)


    We do have other sources for the war, but I don't think they're really dispositive of the numbers Caesar faced. Our other sources are archaeological -- so, we can go to Gergovia (say) and excavate for Roman war machinery, but it won't tell us how many Gallic women and children were clapped in chains and sent to Rome. For that kind of information, we rely on Caesar (who claims to have enslaved a million men, women and children).

    You said the commentaires was for propaganda purpose, and so think I, but the talk abput descent from venus is too of course, i dont think he really thought he was a desent from a god, but it strengthen his stand with the people.

  3. Are you saying that 300 Romans could have held off the Persians?


    Luculus was outnumbered but had several thousand men.


    Are you saying there were only 300 troops among the Greeks? Respectfully, I don't think so. There were also 700 Thespians and 400 Thebens...and probably a lot more as well as a couple thousand helots in support at the final battle. Before that final day, there were several thousand other Greek allies who retreated only when it appeared hopeless.


    A late Empire army means less discipline, less training, and even less loyalty. It also spells a more likely defeat of the Romans. On the other hand, let's consider Persian wicker shields vs. a well-disciplined Roman killing machine of a Julius Caesar. :wine: Throw in a few hundred auxiliary Roman archers and Balearic slingers. More interesting. The Battle at Thermopylae (at least initially) was a frontal encounter in a limited area. This would play to the legion's strength.


    guy also known as gaius

    Now when i wrote "late empire", i meant non-republic, an army after the Marian reforms. Not an army from the the downfall time of Rome, but like around 30BC- 150AD. But i agree that the romans wasn't as loyal or had the same condempt of death as the Spartans. Sorry my bad english, I'm from Sweden ya know :D

  4. There's a lot to consider. What sort of ground are they fighting on? Who has higher ground? Where is the sun? What weather prevails?


    In general, the phalanx is fairly formidable provided you meet them head on without missile support (I mean ancient missiles ;) ). Thats why the Romans adopted it earlier to your chosen period. The cohort has a lot of tactical flexibility the phalanx doesn't. That's why the Romans dropped the pikes when they realised just how vulnerable the phalanx can be.



    You never answered the question ;) hehe

  5. Hello. I am new to these fourums so if my question is out of place please tell me.

    I was always facsinated with this question. Now one on one. 1 cohort of Legionnaires versus 1 unit of silver pikemen. Who has the advantage? Now the cohort has mobility and the phalanx has reach. With no cavalry to support the cohort can they overcome the Phalanx? What do you think? And I am talking late republic cohorts.




  6. I have been wondering, did the Romans not care about their cavalry?

    Do you think they would have fared better with more cavalry?


    After all, the standard Legions cavalry consisted of 120 men divided into 4 squads of 40. They were only really used as scouts and I wonder if they the Romans should have put more effort into making their cavalry greater. It is evident all throughout Roman history that Roman cavalry was not good enough. For example at the battle of Cannae Hannibal routed the Roman cavalry and destroyed the army. That is only one of many examples of why the Romans should have put more effort into making their cavalry great.


    Sure the Romans had well trained auxiliaries, but they were mainly posted in the East to protect against the Parthian horsemen who were far superior. If the Romans Legion had put more effort into the Legions cavalry then maybe the Romans could have won many more battles. Instead of 120 horsemen I think the Legion's should have been given at least 500 well trained cavalry.


    The Romans were good at fighting with infantry, but if it came to cavalry battles then the Roman usually failed miserably (The Parthians easily defeated Roman armys many a time).


    So I ask you, do you think the Romans would have fared better all across the Empire with more and batter trained cavalry?



    Well, the after the divide of east and western roman empire the eastern realized the value of cavalry agains their eastern enemies, mainly sassanids. Thatswhy they made clibinarii and cathafractii, but i guess youre right about earlier B)

  7. Hello. I am new to these fourums so if my question is out of place please tell me.

    I was always facsinated with this question. Now one on one. 1 cohort of Legionnaires versus 1 unit of silver pikemen. Who has the advantage? Now the cohort has mobility and the phalanx has reach. With no cavalry to support the cohort can they overcome the Phalanx? What do you think? And I am talking late republic cohorts.


    I think the romans would win, read about the battle of Pydna and you will understand :)

  8. Hello, i wonder if anyone have played Rome total war alexander? Is it worth to buy or is rtw and barb invasion better? Also i wonder if anyone have played the game Rome SPQR wish seem to be almost the same as rtw but maybe a little more advanced? Happy for answers! :)

  9. The questions above were posed in a thread dealing with CJ Caesar's Gallic Wars.


    Actually I don't see why they shouldn't apply to any other Roman war of conquest.


    Have we asked that to virtually any Roman historian, from Fabius Pictor to Zonaras, it seems the answer would have been almost unanimously straightforward:


    Rome conquered the world in perpetual self-defense.


    What would you answer to the same questions?



    Often just because individuals wanted personal glory, but in caesars case, the gallic wars protected italy from more barbarian invasions, like the one marius stopped ca 100BC from teutons and cimbres.

  10. If anything I'd serve Scipio Africanus in beating Hannibal

    Agreed, not only due to their threat to Roman homeland, but the stories of child sacrifice in Carthage are supremely outrageous if true (?)

    Remember that in their eyes, the child sacrifice wasnt cruel at all, just a way to make the gods happy, im sure the carthagians thought the romans were cruel when they buired the vestal virgins alive if they had sex :lol:

  11. Publius Cornelius Scipio the conqueror of Hannibal. No other Roman commander defeated so great an opponent in battle.


    While I don't disagree with the fact Scipio was one of the greatest generals of the republic era there is one point I think we need to be mindful of. Scipio faced Hannibal when the latter's power was on the decline. He was stuck in Italy waiting for reinforcements for a considerable period of time when the Romans took the battle to Carthage in Spain and Africa. Hannibal's tactics in truth did not change much as well. By the time Scipio faced Hannibal in Zama he knew perfectly well how to handle the war elephants. Keeping these points in mind I don't think he was as brilliant as many paint him to be.


    The greatest general in my opinion was Caesar. He was a great politician as well as a master tactician. The seige of Alesia was testament to his brilliance - he surpassed Alexander's brilliant seige of Tyre. To add to that Caesar's invasion of Gaul was the greatest undertaking of that era - he conquered Gaul in just over 8 years. To add to that he defeated a German army as well as expanding the frontier to soutern England. This is to name just a few.


    On the topic of conquests, Caesar's feats were not matched till the days of Trajan's successful conquest of Dacia.


    As a politician he paved the way for the waning republic (with its corrupt senators) to be dismantled and reorganised as the Roman Empire. I won't go too much into detail with his political achievements; most are well aware of his achievements here.


    As a sidenote, while some might disagree, Rome gained true success when the government was reorganised as an empire. But that's just my personal opinion.

    Your wrong in one thing, caesar did not include britain in the roman empire, he forced them to pay tax but they quited when he left, it was an emperor long time later, cant remember the name, that made britania to a roman province.