Trajan's Wall is the name used for several linear earthen fortifications found across Eastern Europe, in Moldova and Ukraine. Contrary to the name and popular belief, the ramparts were not built by Romans during Trajan's reign, but during other imperial periods. Furthermore, the association with the Roman Emperor may be a recent scholarly invention, only entering the imagination of the locals with the national awakening of the 19th century. Medieval Moldavian documents referred to the earthworks as Troian in reference to a mythological hero in the Romanian and Slavic folklore; the other major earthen fortification in Romania, Brazda lui Novac, is named after a mythological hero. There are three valla in Romania, in south-central Dobruja, extending from the Danube to the Black Sea coast. While the relative chronology of the complex is accepted, the exact dating of each fortification is under dispute. Scholars place their erection at different dates in the Early Mediaeval period, in the second half of the first millennium.
In what regards the builders, two theories have gained acceptance, with supporters split, to a large degree, along national lines. Thus, Bulgarian historiography considers the fortifications were built by the First Bulgarian Empire as a defence against the various nomad groups roaming the North-Pontic steppes. On the other hand, several Romanian historians have tried to attribute at least part of the walls to the Byzantine Empire under emperors John I Tzimisces and Basil II, which controlled the region in the second part of the 10th century and throughout the 11th; the oldest and smallest vallum, the Small Earthen Dyke, is 61 km in length, extending from Cetatea Pătulului on the Danube to Constanţa on the sea coast. Made of earth, it has no defensive constructions built on it, but has a moat on its southern side; this feature has been interpreted as indicating construction by a population living to the north of the earthwork, in order to protect itself from an enemy in the South. The second vallum, the Large Earthen Dyke, 54 km in length, overlaps the smaller one on some sections.
It follows the Carasu Valley and ends at Palas, west of Constanţa. Its average height is 3.5 m, it has moats on both sides. On it are built 63 fortifications: 35 larger, 28 smaller; the average distance between fortifications is 1 km. The vallum shows signs of reconstruction; the last vallum to be built, the Stone Dyke, is made of earth, but has a stone wall on its crest. It is 59 km in length, extending from south of Axiopolis to the Black Sea coast, at a point 75 m south of the little earth wall; the agger is about 1.5 m in height. It has a moat on its northern side and 26 fortifications, the distance between them varying from 1 to 4 km; the commune Valu lui Traian is named after the vallum. In the Northern part of Dobrogea, on South bank of Danube there was a wall built by Trajan; the wall was constructed between today ancient town of Halmyris on the East. The wall was discovered by means of aerial photographs The remnants in Moldova comprise earthen walls and palisades. There are two major fragments preserved in Moldova: Southern Trajan's Wall.
The Southern Trajan's Wall in Moldova is thought to be dated by the 3rd century, built by Athanaric and stretches from Romania: Buciumeni-Tiganesti-Tapu-Stoicani and in after that another 126 km from the village of Vadul in Cahul district by the Prut River stretches into Ukraine and ends at Lake Sasyk by Tatarbunar. The Coat of Arms of Cahul district of Bessarabia, Russian Empire, incorporated Trajan's Wall; some academics like Dorel Bondoc and Costin Croitoru think that it was done by the Romans, because -to be done- it required plenty of knowledge and workforce that barbarians like Athanaric did not have. The Upper Trajan's Wall is thought to be constructed in the 4th century by Greuthungi Goths in order to defend the border against the Huns, it stretches 120 km from Dniester River by Chiţcani in Teleneşti district to Prut River and exetend till Tiganesti Sendreni in Romania. Fragments of Trajan's Wall are found by Leova; the rampart known as Trajan's Wall in Podolia and stretches through the modern districts of Kamianets-Podilskyi, Nova Ushytsia and Khmelnytskyi.
A part of the Moldavian Lower Trojan's Wall ends in Ukraine. See Serpent's Wall; the historian Alexandru V. Boldur regards this "Trajan's Wall" as the western limit of the territories of the 13th-century Bolokhoveni. Upper Trajan's Wall Southern Trajan's Wall Limes Moesiae Limes Romanus Limes Transalutanus Pietroasele Rădulescu Adrian, Bitoleanu Ion, Istoria românilor dintre Dunăre şi Mare: Dobrogea, Editura Ştiinţifică şi Enciclopedică, Bucureşti, 1979
Technological history of the Roman military
The technology history of the Roman military covers the development of and application of technologies for use in the armies and navies of Rome from the Roman Republic to the fall of the Western Roman Empire. The rise of Hellenism and the Roman Republic are seen as signalling the end of the Iron Age in the Mediterranean. Roman iron-working was enhanced by a process known as carburization; the Romans used the better properties in their armaments, the 1,300 years of Roman military technology saw radical changes. The Roman armies of the early empire were much better equipped than early republican armies. Metals used for arms and armor included iron and brass. For construction, the army used wood and stone; the use of concrete in architecture was mirrored in Roman military technology in the application of a military workforce to civilian construction projects. Much of what is described as Roman technology, as opposed to that of the Greeks, comes directly from the Etruscan civilization, thriving to the North when Rome was just a small kingdom.
The Etruscans had invented the stone arch, used it in bridges as well as buildings. Some Roman technologies were taken directly from Greek civilization. After the absorption of the ancient Greek city states into the Roman Republic in 146 BC, the advanced Greek technology began to spread across many areas of Roman influence and supplement the Empire; this included the military advances that the Greeks had made, as well as all the scientific, mathematical and artistic developments. However, the Romans made many significant technological advances, such as the invention of hydraulic cement and concrete, they used such new materials to great advantage in their structures, many of which survive to this day, like their masonry aqueducts, such as the Pont du Gard, buildings, such as the Pantheon and Baths of Diocletian in Rome. Their methods were recorded by such luminaries as Vitruvius and Frontinus for example, who wrote handbooks to advise fellow engineers and architects. Romans knew enough history to be aware that widespread technological change had occurred in the past and brought benefits, as shown for example by Pliny the Elder's Naturalis Historia.
That tradition continued as the empire absorbed new ideas. Romans thought of themselves as practical, so small-scale innovation was common; the traditional view is that their reliance on a plentiful slave labour force and a lack of a patent or copyright system have both been cited as reasons that there was little social or financial pressure to automate or reduce manual tasks. However, this view is being challenged by new research that shows they did indeed innovate, on a wide scale, thus the watermill had been known to the Greeks, but it was the Romans who developed their efficient utilisation. The set of mills at Barbegal in southern France were worked by a single aqueduct, which drove no fewer than 16 overshot mills built into the side of a hill, they were built by the army and supplied flour to a wide region. Floating mills were used to exploit fast flowing rivers; the Romans used water power in an unexpected way during mining operations. It's known from the writings of Pliny the Elder that they exploited the alluvial gold deposits of north-west Spain soon after the conquest of the region in 25 BC using large-scale hydraulic mining methods.
The spectacular gold mine at Las Medulas was worked by no fewer than seven long aqueducts cut into the surrounding mountains, the water being played directly onto the soft auriferous ore. The outflow was channelled into sluice boxes, the heavier gold collected on rough pavements, they developed many deep mines, such as those for copper at Rio Tinto, where Victorian mining developments exposed the much earlier workings. Dewatering machines, such as Archimedean screws and reverse overshot water wheels, were found in situ, one of, on show at the British Museum. Another fragmentary example was recovered from the Roman gold mine at Dolaucothi in west Wales, is preserved at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff; the army were at the forefront of development of gold mines, since the metal was imperial property, developed the Dolaucothi mines from the outset by establishing a fort there, known as Luentinum. They had the expertise to build the infrastructure of aqueducts and reservoirs, as well as control production.
The period in which technological progress was fastest and greatest was during the 2nd century and 1st century BC, the period in which Roman political and economic power increased. By the 2nd century, Roman technology appears to have peaked; the Romans advanced military technology and implemented it on a massive scale. From a few early models of ballista from Greek city-states the Romans adopted and improved the design issuing one to every century in the legions. To facilitate this organization, an engineering corps was developed. An officer of engineers, or praefectus fabrum, is referenced in armies of the Late Republic, but this post is not verifiable in all accounts and may have been a military advisor on the personal staff of a commanding officer. There were legion architects. Ensuring that constructions were level was the job of the libratores, who would launch missiles and other projectiles during battle; the engineering corps was in charge of massive production prefabricating artillery and siege equipment to facilitate its transportation Roman military engineering Roman aqueducts Roman technology Sanitation in ancient R
Roman military frontiers and fortifications
Roman military borders and fortifications were part of a grand strategy of territorial defense in the Roman Empire, although this is a matter of debate. By the early 2nd century, the Roman Empire had reached the peak of its territorial expansion and rather than expanding their borders as earlier in the Empire and Republic, the Romans solidified their position by fortifying their strategic position with a series of fortifications and established lines of defense. Historian Adrian Goldsworthy argues that the Romans had reached the natural limits which their military traditions afforded them conquest over and that beyond the borders of the early-to-mid Empire lay peoples whose military traditions made them militarily unconquerable, despite many Roman battle victories. In particular, Goldsworthy argues that the cavalry-based warfare of the Parthians and Persians presented a major challenge to the expansion of Rome's infantry-based armies; the borders of the Roman Empire, which fluctuated throughout the empire's history, were a combination of natural frontiers and man-made fortifications which separated the lands of the empire from the "barbarian" lands beyond.
Individual fortifications had been constructed by the Roman military from as early as the building of Rome's first city walls in the 6th or 7th century BC. However, systematic construction of fortifications around the periphery of the empire on a strategic scale began around 40 AD under Emperor Caligula. However, it was under Hadrian's rule, which began in 117, that the Roman frontier was systematically fortified, he spent half of his 21-year reign touring the empire and advocating for the construction of forts and walls all across the edges of the empire. The coherent construction of these fortifications on a strategic scale are known as the limes, continued until around 270; the limes consisted of fortresses for legions or vexillations as well as a system of roads for the rapid transit of troops and, in some places, extensive walls. The most famous example of these is Hadrian's Wall in Great Britain, built across the entire width of the island to protect from attack from tribes located in modern-day Scotland.
The so-called Limes Britannicus is the best example of the ultimate limes - like the Great Wall of China, it was an attempt to construct a continuous man-made fortification along the length of an entire border, a massive undertaking. However, it is not correct to interpret other limes in the same way or to view the limes as an impenetrable barrier. Other limes would not have had a continuous man-made fortification for the entirety of their length. In places, a river, desert or natural outcropping of rock could provide the same effect for zero outlay. Fortifications as impressive as Hadrian's Wall were not unbreachable: with milecastles some distance apart and patrols infrequent, small enemy forces would have been able to penetrate the defenses for small-scale raiding. However, a raiding party would be forced to fight its way through one of the well-defended gates, abandon its loot, such as cattle, thus negating the whole purpose of the raid or be trapped against the wall by the responding legions.
Additionally, a large army would have been able to force a crossing of the limes using siege equipment. The value of the limes lay not in its absolute impenetrability but, as S. Thomas Parker argues, in its hindrance to the enemy: granting a delay or warning that could be used to summon concentrated Roman forces to the site; the limes are therefore better seen as an instrument allowing a greater economy of force in defense of a border than otherwise would be necessary to provide the same level of defense. After 270, the maintenance of an impenetrable solid frontier was abandoned by Constantine I in favor of a policy, whether deliberate or forced by circumstance, of "defense in depth"; this called for the maintenance of a softer, deeper perimeter area of defense, with concentrated hard points throughout its depth. The idea was that any invading force of a sufficient size could penetrate the initial perimeter but in doing so with any element of surprise or rapid movement would be forced to leave several defended hard points to its rear, hampering its lines of supply and communications, threatening surrounding of the force.
In the late Empire the frontiers became more elastic, with little effort expended in maintaining frontier defense. Instead, armies were concentrated near the heart of the empire, enemies allowed to penetrate in cases as far inwards as the Italian peninsula before being met in battle. After conquering much of the modern landmass of Great Britain, the Romans halted their northern expansion at the southern fringe of Caledonia, what is now central Scotland; this left them with a border shared with a people who made repeated raids and insurrections against them. Unlike other borders throughout the empire, there was no natural border to fall back on such as desert or wide river that crossed the whole peninsula, so instead a series of defenses were built in southern to mid-Scotland in order to protect the province of Britannia from the Caledonians and the Picts. Although the border was not a continuous wall, a series of fortifications known as Gask Ridge in mid-Scotland may well be Rome's earliest fortified land frontier.
Constructed in the 70CE or 80CE, it was superseded by the Hadrian's Wall forty years and the final Antonine Wall twenty years after that. Rather than representing a series of consecutive advancements, the border should be seen as fluctuating - the Antonine Wall for exam
The Limes Britannicus is a modern collective name sometimes used for those fortifications and defensive ramparts that were built to protect the north, the coasts, major transport routes of Roman Britain. These defences existed from the 1st to the 5th centuries AD and ran through the territory of present-day England and Wales. Britain was one of the most troubled regions in the European part of the Roman Empire and could only be secured by the Roman Army at considerable effort. Despite a rapid victory over the tribes in the south, which Claudius' field commander, Aulus Plautius, achieved in 43 AD for Rome, the resistance of the British was not broken for a long time afterwards; the Romans succeeded in further consolidating their rule in the period that followed, although the troops stationed there were overburdened by having to defend Britain on three fronts. The incursions of barbarians from the north of the island caused serious problems. To the west and south, the Britannic provinces had to be defended against Hibernian and Germanic attacks.
Against all odds, Britain was held for three centuries by the Roman Empire. In retrospect, the Roman domination of Britain is considered to be positive. For a long time there was prosperity on the island. Behind the protection of Hadrian's Wall and that formed by the natural coastal boundaries to the east and west, the region we now know as England was influenced by the achievements of Roman civilization. Hadrian's Wall and the castra on the Saxon Shore are still the most prominent symbols of Roman rule over Britain; the conquest of Britain was ordered in 43 AD by Emperor Claudius. Claudius had a low reputation among his troops and was forced - according to the tradition of emperors - to acquire glory on the battlefield in order to secure his rule permanently. Britannia had large deposits of precious metals, fertile soil and vast forests, which made it economically attractive to the Romans. Most of Great Britain was conquered in the first year of the invasion. However, this campaign sparked a long-running resistance by the native Britons against their occupiers that lasted for decades.
Following the Boudica Uprising, they succeeded in expelling the Roman Army from the island. It may have been that Claudius planned to occupy only the lowland regions of Britain. In the 1st century, the Romans had no clear idea. Roman influence was therefore continually extended as the borders of their conquered territory shifted several times. Time and again fighting broke out with the indigenous Celtic tribes in the border zones of the new province, compelling Roman troops to move into new areas in the west and north, in order to ensure the permanence of Roman rule and to secure their borders. In 80 AD, the army of Agricola penetrated well into Caledonian territory after his victory in the Battle of Mons Graupius. After attempts to permanently occupy the Highlands failed, the Romans fell back in 120 AD to the Stanegate line; the majority of troops in Britain had to continue to be stationed in the north. As protection against raids by pirates from Ireland, a powerful protection force was needed on the west coast.
In particular, the regions of Cumbria and Lancashire suffered time and again from the plundering of the Irish. During the reign of Hadrian, Britain was still not an peaceful province. Coin missions dating to this time indicate that Britain was in a "permanent state of defence" and pre-Roman tribal societies continued to occupy the outer regions of the island; the greatest danger was always posed by the Picts from who lived on the far side of the Scottish rivers, the Forth and the Clyde. Moreover, in the lands between these rivers and Hadrian’s Wall, the Central Lowlands, there were still four other Celtic tribes - the Votadini, Selgovae and Novantae - which Rome sought to incorporate in order to be able to neutralise their fighting power and make use of their farmland. To that end, road forts were built to protect Rome’s territorial claims. From 122, the northern border was secured by Hadrian's Wall; the fortifications on the coast of Cumbria, which were erected were intended to prevent the Wall being circumvented in the West.
Under Hadrian, the three legion camps were rebuilt in stone. In 140 AD, Roman troops advanced again against the Caledonians and built the Antonine Wall further to the north but, by 160, it had been abandoned. In the period 155-158 AD there was a revolt in Britain which led to heavy losses being inflicted on the local legions; these losses had to be made up by reinforcements from the Germanic Rhine provinces. At the end of the 2nd century seafaring Germanic peoples – the Angles and Franks - began to threaten the Gallic and British coasts with the first raids from the continent. During the course of the civil war that followed the election of Septimius Severus as emperor, his rival, Clodius Albinus, set forth for the continent in 197 with the Britannic army, but suffered a crushing defeat against Severus’ troops in the Battle of Lugdunum. In the 3rd century, Roman Britain underwent profound changes. With the return of soldiers to the island, their first task was to drive back the Picts, who had taken advantage of the absence of Roman troops to raid and plunder extensively.
As a result, Septimius Severus ordered a large-scale punitive expedition against the tribes north of Hadrian's Wall and reoccupied the Antonine Wall for a short time. Unlike the other provinces, Britain appeared stable and calm; the short-term separation of the island from the rest of the Empire under the usurper Carausius showed that this was an illusion and that the power of Ro
The Saxon Shore was a military command of the late Roman Empire, consisting of a series of fortifications on both sides of the English Channel. It was established in the late 3rd century and was led by the "Count of the Saxon Shore". In the late 4th century, his functions were limited to Britain, while the fortifications in Gaul were established as separate commands. Several Saxon Shore forts survive in south-east England. During the latter half of the 3rd century, the Roman Empire faced a grave crisis. Internally, it was weakened by civil wars, the violent succession of brief emperors, secession in the provinces, while externally it faced a new wave of attacks by "barbarian" tribes. Most of Britain had been part of the empire since the mid-1st century, it was protected from raids in the north by the Hadrianic and Antonine Walls, while a fleet of some size was available. However, as the frontiers came under increasing external pressure, fortifications were built throughout the Empire in order to protect cities and guard strategically important locations.
It is in this context. In the 230s, under Severus Alexander, several units had been withdrawn from the northern frontier and garrisoned at locations in the south, had built new forts at Brancaster and Caister-on-Sea in Norfolk and Reculver in Kent. Dover was fortified in the early 2nd century, the other forts in this group were constructed in the period between the 270s and 290s; the only contemporary reference we possess that mentions the name "Saxon Shore" comes in the late 4th century Notitia Dignitatum, which lists its commander, the Comes Litoris Saxonici per Britanniam, gives the names of the sites under his command and their respective complements of military personnel. However, due to the absence of further evidence, theories have varied between scholars as to the exact meaning of the name, the nature and purpose of the chain of forts it refers to. Two interpretations were put forward as to the meaning of the adjective "Saxon": either a shore attacked by Saxons, or a shore settled by Saxons.
Some argue that the latter hypothesis, less valid, is supported by Eutropius, who states that during the 280s the sea along the coasts of Belgica and Armorica was "infested with Franks and Saxons", that this was why Carausius was first put in charge of the fleet there. However, Eutropius refers to Saxons as seaborne invaders, it receives at least partial support from archaeological finds, as artefacts of a Germanic style have been found in burials, while there is evidence of the presence of Saxons in some numbers in SE England and the northern coasts of Gaul around Boulogne-sur-Mer and Bayeux from the middle of the 5th century onwards. This, in turn, mirrors a well documented practice of deliberately settling Germanic tribes to strengthen Roman defences; the other interpretation, supported by Stephen Johnson, holds that the forts fulfilled a coastal defence role against seaborne invaders Saxons and Franks, acted as bases for the naval units operating against them. This view is reinforced by the parallel chain of fortifications across the Channel on the northern coasts of Gaul, which complemented the British forts, suggesting a unified defensive system.
Other scholars like John Cotterill however consider the threat posed by Germanic raiders, at least in the 3rd and early 4th centuries, to be exaggerated. They interpret the construction of the forts at Brancaster, Caister-on-Sea and Reculver in the early 3rd century and their location at the estuaries of navigable rivers as pointing to a different role: fortified points for transport and supply between Britain and Gaul, without any relation to countering seaborne piracy; this view is supported by contemporary references to the supplying of the army of Julian by Caesar with grain from Britain during his campaign in Gaul in 359, their use as secure landing places by Count Theodosius during the suppression of the Great Conspiracy a few years later. Another theory, proposed by D. A. White, was that the extended system of large stone forts was disproportionate to any threat by seaborne Germanic raiders, that it was conceived and constructed during the secession of Carausius and Allectus in 289-296, with an different enemy in mind: they were to guard against an attempt at reconquest by the Empire.
This view, although disputed, has found recent support from archaeological evidence at Pevensey, which dates the fort's construction to the early 290s. Whatever their original purpose, it is certain that in the late 4th century the forts and their garrisons were employed in operations against Frankish and Saxon pirates. Britain was abandoned by Rome with Armorica following soon after; the forts on both sides continued to be inhabited in the following centuries, in Britain in particular several continued in use well into the Anglo-Saxon period. The nine forts mentioned in the Notitia Dignitatum for Britain are listed here, from north to south, with their garrisons. Branodunum. One of the earliest forts, dated to the 230s, it is of a typical rectangular castrum layout. It was garrisoned by the Equites Dalmatae Brandodunenses, although evidence exists suggesting that its original garrison was the cohors I Aquitanorum. Gariannonum. Established between 260 and the mid-270s to guard the River Yare, it was garrisoned by the Equites Stablesiani Gariannoneses.
Although there is some discussion as to whet
The Roman army was the terrestrial armed forces deployed by the Romans throughout the duration of Ancient Rome, from the Roman Kingdom to the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire, its medieval continuation the Eastern Roman Empire. It is thus a term that may span 2,206 years, during which the Roman armed forces underwent numerous permutations in composition, organisation and tactics, while conserving a core of lasting traditions.. The Early Roman army was the armed force of the Roman Kingdom and of the early Republic. During this period, when warfare chiefly consisted of small-scale plundering raids, it has been suggested that the army followed Etruscan or Greek models of organisation and equipment; the early Roman army was based on an annual levy. The infantry ranks were filled with the lower classes while the cavalry were left to the patricians, because the wealthier could afford horses. Moreover, the commanding authority during the regal period was the high king; until the establishment of the Republic and the office of consul, the king assumed the role of commander-in-chief.
However, from about 508 BC Rome no longer had a king. The commanding position of the army was given to the consuls, "who were charged both singly and jointly to take care to preserve the Republic from danger"; the term legion is derived from the Latin word legio. At first there were only four legions; these legions were numbered "I" to "IIII", with the fourth being written as such and not "IV". The first legion was seen as the most prestigious; the bulk of the army was made up of citizens. These citizens could not choose the legion. Any man "from ages 16–46 were selected by ballot" and assigned to a legion; until the Roman military disaster of 390 BC at the Battle of the Allia, Rome's army was organised to the Greek phalanx. This was due to Greek influence in Italy "by way of their colonies". Patricia Southern quotes ancient historians Livy and Dionysius in saying that the "phalanx consisted of 3,000 infantry and 300 cavalry"; each man had to provide his equipment in battle. Politically they shared the same ranking system in the Comitia Centuriata.
The Roman army of the mid-Republic was known as the "manipular army" or the "Polybian army" after the Greek historian Polybius, who provides the most detailed extant description of this phase. The Roman army started to have a full-time strength of 150,000 at all times and 3/4 of the rest were levied. During this period, the Romans, while maintaining the levy system, adopted the Samnite manipular organisation for their legions and bound all the other peninsular Italian states into a permanent military alliance; the latter were required to supply the same number of troops to joint forces as the Romans to serve under Roman command. Legions in this phase were always accompanied on campaign by the same number of allied alae, units of the same size as legions. After the 2nd Punic War, the Romans acquired an overseas empire, which necessitated standing forces to fight lengthy wars of conquest and to garrison the newly gained provinces, thus the army's character mutated from a temporary force based on short-term conscription to a standing army in which the conscripts were supplemented by a large number of volunteers willing to serve for much longer than the legal six-year limit.
These volunteers were from the poorest social class, who did not have plots to tend at home and were attracted by the modest military pay and the prospect of a share of war booty. The minimum property requirement for service in the legions, suspended during the 2nd Punic War, was ignored from 201 BC onward in order to recruit sufficient volunteers. Between 150-100 BC, the manipular structure was phased out, the much larger cohort became the main tactical unit. In addition, from the 2nd Punic War onward, Roman armies were always accompanied by units of non-Italian mercenaries, such as Numidian light cavalry, Cretan archers, Balearic slingers, who provided specialist functions that Roman armies had lacked; the Roman army of the late Republic marks the continued transition between the conscription-based citizen-levy of the mid-Republic and the volunteer, professional standing forces of the imperial era. The main literary sources for the army's organisation and tactics in this phase are the works of Julius Caesar, the most notable of a series of warlords who contested for power in this period.
As a result of the Social War, all Italians were granted Roman citizenship, the old allied alae were abolished and their members integrated into the legions. Regular annual conscription remained in force and continued to provide the core of legionary recruitment, but an ever-increasing proportion of recruits were volunteers, who signed up for 16-year terms as opposed to the maximum 6 years for conscripts; the loss of ala cavalry reduced Roman/Italian cavalry by 75%, legions became dependent on allied native horse for cavalry cover. This period saw the large-scale expansion of native forces employed to complement the legions, made up of numeri recruited from tribes within Rome's overseas empire and neighbouring allied tribes. Large numbers of heavy infantry and cavalry were recruited in Spain and Thrace, archers in Thrace and Syria. However, these native units were not integrated with the legions, but retained th
Founding of Rome
The tale of the Founding of Rome is recounted in traditional stories handed down by the ancient Romans themselves as the earliest history of their city in terms of legend and myth. The most familiar of these myths, the most famous of all Roman myths, is the story of Romulus and Remus, twins who were suckled by a she-wolf as infants in the 8th century BC. Another account, set earlier in time, claims that the Roman people are descended from Trojan War hero Aeneas, who escaped to Italy after the war, whose son, was the ancestor of the family of Julius Caesar; the archaeological evidence of human occupation of the area of modern-day Rome, Italy dates from about 14,000 years ago. The national epic of mythical Rome, the Aeneid of Virgil, tells the story of how Trojan prince Aeneas came to Italy; the Aeneid was written under Augustus, who claimed ancestry through Julius Caesar and his mother Venus. According to the Aeneid, the survivors from the fallen city of Troy banded together under Aeneas and underwent a series of adventures around the Mediterranean Sea, including a stop at newly founded Carthage under the rule of Queen Dido reaching the Italian coast.
The Trojans were thought to have landed in an area between modern Anzio and Fiumicino, southwest of Rome at Laurentum or, in other versions, at Lavinium, a place named for Lavinia, the daughter of King Latinus whom Aeneas married. This started a series of armed conflicts with Turnus over the marriage of Lavinia. Before the arrival of Aeneas, Turnus was betrothed to Lavinia, who married Aeneas, starting the war. Aeneas killed Turnus; the Trojans won the right to assimilate with the local peoples. The young son of Aeneas, Ascanius known as Iulus, went on to found Alba Longa and the line of Alban kings who filled the chronological gap between the Trojan saga and the traditional founding of Rome in the 8th century BC. Toward the end of this line, King Procas was the father of Amulius. At Procas' death, Numitor became king of Alba Longa, but Amulius captured him and sent him to prison. Forests have a prominent role in the founding myth-when Aeneas arrives at the site that would become Rome it is still forest: Evander goes on to explain that from that "first time" the god Saturn brings these scattered people laws and bestows upon them the name Latium.
The myth of Aeneas was of Greek origin and had to be reconciled with the Italian myth of Romulus and Remus, who would have been born around 771 BC if taken as historical figures. They were purported to be sons of Rhea Silvia and either Mars, the god of war, or the demi-god hero Hercules, they were abandoned at birth, in the manner of many mythological heroes, because of a prophecy that they would overthrow their great-uncle Amulius, who had overthrown Silvia's father Numitor. The twins were abandoned on the river Tiber by servants who took pity on the infants, despite their orders; the twins were nurtured by a she-wolf until a shepherd named Faustulus found the boys and took them as his sons. Faustulus and his wife Acca Larentia raised the children; when Remus and Romulus became adults, they killed restored Numitor. They decided to establish a city. Thus, Rome began with a fratricide, a story, taken to represent the city's history of internecine political strife and bloodshed. Strabo writes that there is an older story, about the founding of Rome, than the previous legends that he had mentioned.
The city was founded by Evander. Strabo writes that Lucius Coelius Antipater believed that Rome was founded by Greeks. Dionysius of Halicarnassus writes that the people who came to the lands that became the city of Rome were first, the Aborigines, who drove the Sicels out of these lands, were from the Arcadia the Pelasgians, who came from Thessaly, third those who came into Italy with Evander from the city of Pallantium in Arcadia, after them the Epeans from Elis and Pheneats from Pheneus, who were part of the army commanded by Heracles who decided to stay there while they were returning from the expedition at the Erytheia, with whom a Trojan element was commingled and last of all, the Trojans who had escaped with Aeneas from Ilium and the other Trojan cities. Dionysius mentions that the Trojans, were Greek people who were from the Peloponnesus, he adds that Romans say that the Pallantium was founded by Greeks from Pallantium of Arcadia, about sixty years before the Trojan war and the leader was Evander.
At the sixteenth generation after the Trojan war the Albans united these places into one settlement, surrounding them with a wall and a ditch. The Albans were a mixed nation composed of all the above people. Dionysius adds that it is that a barbarian element from among the neighboring people or a remnant of the ancient inhabitants of the place were mixed with the Greek, but all these people, having lost their national identity came to be called by one common name, after Latinus, the king of the country. The leaders of the colony were the twin brothers Remus. Another story told how a son of Odysseus and Circe, was the one who founded Rome. Martin P. Nilsson speculates that this older story was becoming a bit embarrassing as Rome became more powerful and tensions with the Greeks grew. Being descendants of the Greeks was no longer preferable, so the Romans settled on the Trojan foundation myth instead. Nilsson further speculates that the name of Romos was changed by the Romans to the native name Romulus, but the name Romos was never forgotten by the people