The earliest notices which we possess of the military art among the
Greeks are those contained in the Homeric poems. The unsettled state of
society in the first ages of Greece led to the early and general
cultivation of the art of arms, which were habitually worn for defence,
even when aggressive warfare was not intended (Thuc.
). But the Homeric poems contain an exhibition of combined
military operations in their earliest stage. Warlike undertakings before
the time described in them can have been little else than predatory
). A collection of warriors
exhibiting less of organisation and discipline than we see depicted in
the Grecian troops before Troy, would hardly deserve the name of an
army. The organisation which we see there, such as it was, arose, not
from any studied, formative system, but naturally out of the imperfect
constitution of society in that age. Every freeman in those times was of
course a soldier; but when all the members of a family were not needed
to go upon an expedition under the command of their chieftain or king,
those who were to go seem to have been selected by lot (Il. 24.400
). As the confederated states,
which are represented as taking part in the Trojan war, are united by
scarcely any other bond than their participation in a common object, the
different bodies of troops, led by their respective chieftains, are [p. 1.767]
far from being united by a common discipline
under the command-in-chief of Agamemnon. A common epithet for allies is
“called from afar” (τηλεκλειτοί,
Il. 5.491, 6.111). Each body obeys its own
leader, and follows him to the conflict, or remains inactive, according
as he chooses to mingle in the fight or not. Authority and obedience are
regulated much more by the nature of the circumstances, or by the
relative personal distinction of the chieftains, than by any law of
military discipline. Gifts (δῶρα
given to them at the end of service; and such may be considered as the
beginning of pay being given to soldiers (Il.
). Agamemnon sometimes urges the chieftains to engage,
not by commands, but by taunts (Il.
ff., 368 ff.). Accordingly, nothing like the tactics or
strategy of a regularly disciplined army is to be traced in the Homeric
descriptions of battles. Each chieftain with his body of troops acts for
himself, without reference to the movements of the rest, except as these
furnish occasion for a vigorous attack, or, when hard pressed, call for
assistance from the common feeling of brotherhood in arms. The wide
interval which in the Homeric age separated the noble or chieftain from
the common freeman, appears in as marked a manner in military as in
civil affairs. The former is distinguished by that superior skill and
prowess in the use of his arms, which would naturally result from the
constant practice of warlike exercises, for which his station gave him
the leisure and the means. A single hero is able to put to flight a
whole troop of common soldiers. The account of a battle consists almost
entirely of descriptions of the single combats of the chiefs on both
sides; and the fortune of the day, when not overruled by the
intervention of the gods, is decided by the individual valour of these
heroes. While the mass of the common soldiers were on foot, the chiefs
rode in chariots [CURRUS
which usually contained two, one to drive (ἡνίοχος
) and one to fight (παραιβάτης
). In these they advanced against the
antagonists whom they singled out for encounter, sometimes hurling their
spears from their chariots, but more commonly alighting, as they drew
near, and fighting on foot, making use of the chariot for pursuit or
flight. The Greeks did not, like the ancient Britons and several nations
of the East, use the chariot itself as an instrument of warfare. Cavalry
was unknown at that time to the Greeks, and horsemanship but very rarely
practised; the ἱππῆες
of Homer are the
chieftains who ride in chariots. These chiefs are drawn up in the front
of the battle array (Il. 4.297
); and frequently the foot-soldiers seem to
have done nothing but watch the single combats of their leaders, forming
in two opposite, parallel lines, between which the more important single
combats are fought. How they got the chariots out of the way when the
foot-soldiers came to close quarters (as in Il.
ff.) is not described.
Though so little account is usually made of the common soldiers (πρυλέες,
), Homer occasionally lays considerable stress on their
orderly and compact array; the Atreidae are honourably distinguished by
the epithet κοσμήτορε λαῶν
). Nestor and Menestheus were also
skilled in marshalling an army (Il.
ff.). The troops
were naturally drawn up in separate bodies according to their different
nations. It would appear to be rather a restoration of the old
arrangement than a new classification, when Nestor (Il. 2.362
) recommends Agamemnon to draw
the troops up by tribes and phratries. Arranged in these natural
divisions, the foot-soldiers were drawn up in densely compacted bodies
to shield, helmet to helmet, man to man (Il.
these masses, though not usually commencing the attack, they frequently
offer a powerful resistance, even to distinguished heroes (as Hector,
ff., comp. 17.267, 354
ff., 13.339), the dense array of their spears forming a barrier not
easily broken through. The signal for advance or retreat was not given
by instruments of any kind, but by the voice of the leader. A loud voice
was consequently an important matter, and the epithet βοὴν ἀγαθὸς
is common. The soldiers
advanced and engaged in battle with loud shouting (ἀλαλητός,
). The trumpet, however, was not absolutely unknown
). Respecting the
armour, offensive and defensive, see ARMA
No engines for besieging are found. There were in the
army, besides the hoplites, light-armed troops, archers and slingers
Under the king or chieftain who commands his separate contingent we
commonly find subordinate chiefs, who command smaller divisions. It is
difficult to say whether it is altogether accidental or not, that these
are frequently five in number. Thus the Myrmidons of Achilles are
divided into five στίχες,
each of 500
men. Five chiefs command the Boeotians; and the whole Trojan army is
formed in five divisions, each under three leaders. (Il. 4.295
ff., 16.171-197, 2.494, 495,
12.87-104.) The term φάλαγξ
either to the whole army (as Il. 6.6
to these smaller divisions and subdivisions, which are also called
When an enemy was slain, it was the universal practice to stop and strip
off his arms, which were carefully preserved by the victor as trophies.
The division of the booty generally was arranged by the leader of the
troop, for whom a portion was set aside as an honorary present (γέρας,
). The recovery of the
dead bodies of the slain was in the Homeric age, as in all later times,
a point of the greatest importance, and frequently either led to a
fierce contest (Il. 16.756
ff.), or was
effected by the payment of a heavy ransom (Il.
). (Köpke, Krieqswesen der Griechen in
vol. 2.110; Grote, History of
vol. ii. p. 106; Buchholz, Die Homerischen
After the heroic age considerable impulse was given to the cultivation of
the military art by the conquests of the Thessalians (the first Grecian
people, apparently, that employed cavalry, to the use of which their
conquests were probably in great part owing) and Dorians, among the
latter of whom the art of warfare was earliest reduced to system. The
distinction of heavy and light armed foot-soldiers of course [p. 1.768]
took its rise with the beginnings of military
service, the poorer class being unable to provide themselves with the
more efficient, but more costly weapons of those who were better off
than themselves. Political considerations tended to make the distinction
more marked and systematic. The system of military castes was indeed
unknown among the Greeks, though something answering the same purpose
existed in the earliest times, when the nobles and their more immediate
dependents and retainers, having greater leisure for the cultivation of
skill in the use of arms and greater means for procuring them, were
separated in that respect by a wide interval from the lower class; while
conversely, military superiority was the most direct means of securing
political supremacy. Hence, as soon as the distinction between the
nobles (the privileged class) and the commonalty (demus) was
established, it became the object of the former to prevent the latter
from placing themselves on a par with them in military strength, and so
the use of the full armour of the heavy-armed, infantry was reserved by
the former for themselves; and when, in times of distress, it was found
necessary to entrust the demus with full armour, the result was not
uncommonly a revolution (as was in some degree the case at Mytilene,
). But in the democracies this
distinction as regards the kinds of service depended merely upon the
greater or less ability of the citizens to procure arms. In the Greek
commonwealths all those who enjoyed the privileges of citizens or
freemen were held bound to serve as soldiers when called upon, and were
provided with arms and trained in military exercises as a matter of
course. The modern system of standing armies was foreign to Greek
habits, and would have been dangerous to the liberties of the different
commonwealths, though something of the kind may be seen in the
body-guards, usually of mercenary troops, kept by tyrants. The
mercenaries in the pay of Alexander of Pherae formed a considerable
army. Practically too, from the continuity of the warlike operations in
which they were engaged, the armies of Philip and Alexander of Macedon,
and their successors, became standing armies. The thousand λογάδες
at Argos (Thuc.
; Diod. 12.75
), the sacred
band at Thebes (Plut. Pel. 18
), and the
(EPARITI) were not considerable enough to be
called armies. The employment of mercenary troops might have led to the
use of standing armies, had it not been that the use of them
characterised the decline of the Grecian states, so that the
circumstances which led to their employment also rendered it impossible
to provide the resources for their maintenance, except when they were
immediately needed. Still, as in the case of the Scythian bowmen at
Athens, individual corps of mercenaries might be regularly maintained.
Slaves were but rarely trusted with arms; and when it was the case, they
were usually manumitted. The Greek armies accordingly were national
armies, resembling rather the militia than the regular armies of modern
times. Their smallness in comparison with modern armies must be noticed.
The largest Greek armies we know of as having operated in Hellas proper
were, at Plataea, 38,700 hoplites and 69,500 ψιλοί
ff.); in the
first invasion of Attica by the Lacedaemonians, 70,000 (Plut. Per. 33
); in the invasion of Laconia
by Epaminondas, 70,000 (Plut. de Glor. Ath.
Mantineia, in 362 B.C., 33,000 Thebans fought
against 23,000 Lacedaemonians, according to Diodorus (15.84
In all the states of Greece, in the earliest as in later times, the
general type of their military organisation was the phalanx,
a body of troops in close array with a long
spear as their principal weapon. It was among the Dorians, and
especially among the Spartans, that this type was most rigidly adhered
to. See Tyrtaeus passim,
who insists on the
especial duties of fighting ἐν
and each keeping his place in the phalanx. The
strength of their military array consisted in the heavy-armed infantry
). They attached
comparatively small importance to their cavalry, which was always
inferior (Xen. Hell. 6.4
10). Indeed, the Thessalians and Boeotians were the only Greek people
who distinguished themselves much for their cavalry; scarcely any other
states had territories adapted for the evolutions of cavalry. The
Spartan army, as described by Xenophon, was probably in all its main
features the same that it was in the time of Lycurgus. The institutions
of that lawgiver converted the body of Spartan citizens into a kind of
military brotherhood, whose almost sole occupation was the practice of
warlike and athletic exercises. The whole life of a Spartan was little
else than either the preparation for or the practice of war. The result
was, that in the strictness of their discipline, the precision and
facility with which they performed their military evolutions, and the
skill and power with which they used their weapons, the Spartans were
unrivalled among the Greeks, so that they seemed like real masters of
the art of war (τεχνίτας τῶν
), while in comparison with them other Greeks
appeared mere tyros (αὐτοσχεδιαστὰς τῶν
Xen. Rep. Laced.
ἄκροι τεχνῖται καὶ σοφισταὶ τῶν
Plut. Pel. 23
). The heavy-armed infantry
of the Spartan armies was composed partly of genuine Spartan citizens,
partly of Perioeci (e. g. Thuc. 4.8
Grote, Hist. of Greece,
vol. ii. p. 458). In later times,
as the number of Spartan citizens decreased, the Perioeci constituted
the larger portion, a fact which renders nugatory all attempts to
connect the numbers of the divisions of the army with the political
divisions of the Spartan citizens. The proclamation of the levy was
called (φρουρὰν φαίνειν
(Xen. Hell. 3.5
, &c.); but if the service was abroad, it was
called στρατιὰν ποιεῖν
(ib. 5.2, 20):
cf. A. Bauer in Müller's Handbuch,
Spartan citizen was liable to military service (ἔμφρουρος
) from the age of twenty to the age of sixty
years. In later times the father of three sons was exempt (Arist.
2.9, 13). Those beyond that age
were, however, sometimes employed in the less arduous kinds of
service--as at Mantineia, where they had charge of the baggage (Thuc. 5.72
). On the occasion of any military
expedition, the kings at first, and afterwards the ephors, made
proclamation what class, according to age, were to go on the expedition
(τὰ ἔτη εἰς ἃ δεῖ
Xen. Rep. Lac.
11.2): as, for
example, all citizens between twenty and [p. 1.769]
thirty, or between twenty and thirty-five, &c. (τὰ δέκα ἀφ᾽ ἥβης, τὰ πεντεκαίδεκα ἀφ᾽
&c.). On one occasion (B.C. 418), on a sudden
emergency, when probably there was not time to collect the Perioeci, all
the citizens of the military age were called forth (Thuc. 5.64
The political and military divisions of the Spartans were mixed up
together in some way which it is not easy to unravel. The whole life of
a Spartan was passed in the discipline of a kind of camp. The citizens
messed together in companies, and slept in a sort of barracks. It
appears from Xenophon (Rep. Lac.
11.4 ff.) that the whole
body of citizens of military age was divided into six divisions called
he terms them: we are not to read
: cf. Xen. Hell. 5.3
), under the command or superintendence of a polemarch,
each mora being subdivided into two λόχοι
(commanded by λοχαγοί
), each λόχος
(headed by πεντηκοστῆρες
), each πεντηκοστὺς
into two ἐνωμοτίαι
(headed by enomotarchs). Xenophon indeed speaks
of four λόχοι,
but compare Xen. Hell. 7.4
, τῶν δώδεκα λόχων
20; and E. Müller, Jahrb. für Phil.
75.99. The ἐνωμοτίαι
were so called
from the men composing them being bound together by a common oath
(τάξις τις διὰ σφαγίων ἐνώμοτος,
Hesych. sub voce
). It was composed of men
of the same age, as is implied in the fact that the members of the
enomoty were trained to act together, and that men under thirty or
thirty-five years were often detached in a battle to pursue the light
troops of the enemy (Xen. Hell. 4.5
; Grote, 2.459), It is to be further noticed that fathers,
brothers, and sons appear in different μόραι
(Xen. Hell. 4.5
); and inhabitants of the same locality
did not serve together, for we find the Amycleans scattered through the
whole army (ib. § 11). These were not merely divisions of
troops engaged in actual military expeditions. The whole body of
citizens at all times formed an army, whether they were congregated at
head-quarters in Sparta, or a portion of them were detached on foreign
service. Herodotus (1.65
) speaks of
enomoties, triacades (which are not mentioned elsewhere), and syssitia
as military divisions, and we learn that the polemarchs presided over
the public tables (Plut. Lyc. 12
these were not military divisions, but civil societies framed in Sparta
to increase the feeling of comradeship so useful in war (Plat.
1.625 E). It was a principal feature of Spartan
discipline that among the youths the elder should teach the younger, and
so the wellknown relation of the εἰσπνήλας
established. (For details, see Gilbert,
1.70.) When a portion of
the citizens was sent out on foreign service, the army that they formed
was arranged in divisions corresponding to, and bearing the same names
as, the divisions of the entire military force of Sparta, i. e. of the
entire body of citizens of military age. As has already been remarked,
an army sent on foreign service consisted of citizens between certain
ages, determined according to the number of soldiers wanted. So that, as
it would seem, every enomotia of the general body sent out a certain
proportion of its numbers for the expedition in question, who (with some
Perioeci) formed an enomotia of the army so sent; and the detachment of
those enomotiae which formed a mora of the whole body of citizens,
formed (apparently) a mora of the army on service. All the accounts that
we have of Spartan military operations indicate that the Perioeci who
served as heavy-armed soldiers, formed integral members of the different
divisions to which they were attached; so that an enomotia, pentecostys,
&c., in the field, would contain a number of soldiers who did
not belong to the corresponding larger divisions of the whole body of
citizens of military age (Thuc. 4.8
; Xen. Hell.
). However, Gilbert (op. cit.
1.74 ff.) thinks that up to 425 B.C.
the Perioeci served apart, and he refers for the time of the Persian
Wars to Hdt. 9.10
. Thirlwall (Hist. of
vol. i. app. ii.) talks of thirty families being represented in the army
by thirty soldiers; an
idea totally at variance with all the accounts that we have. Supposing a
family to consist of a father and three sons, if the latter were above
twenty, and the father not above sixty years of age, all would be
soldiers, liable to be called out for active service at any time; and
according to the limits of the age proclaimed by the ephors, one, two,
three, or all of them might be called out at once. The strength of a
mora on actual service, of course, varied according to circumstances. To
judge by the name pentecostys, the normal number of a mora would have
been 400; but 500, 600, and 900 are mentioned as the number of men in a
mora on different occasions (Plut. Pel.
; Xen. Hell. 4.5
; Schol. ad
, &c.; Müller, Dorians,
3.12.2, note t). That these variations arose from variations in the
number of Spartan citizens (Haase in Ersch and Gruber's
), is an assumption which leaves out of sight the
proportion of citizens called out, and the number of Perioeci in the
army. (Of the 292 heavy-armed soldiers who surrendered at Sphacteria,
120 were Spartans, Thuc. 4.38
. At the battle
of Plataeae, one-half of the heavy-armed soldiers of the Lacedaemonians
were Spartans.) When in the field, each mora of infantry was attended by
a mora of cavalry (Xen. Rep.
), consisting at the most of 100 men, and
commanded by an hipparmost (ἱππαρμοστής,
Xen. Hell. 4.4
, § 10; 5.12).
Plutarch (Plut. Lyc. 23
) of fifty, which
may possibly be the same divisions. It is not easy, however, to see in
what manner the cavalry could have been thus apportioned, or how each
mora of cavalry could have “belonged to a mora of infantry without
being in close connexion with it” (as Müller says).
The cavalry seems merely to have been employed to protect the flanks,
and but little regard was paid to it. The feeblest and least ambitious
served in the cavalry (Xen. Hell. 6.4
). The Spartans generally used
mercenary cavalry (Thuc. 2.9
; Xen. Hipp. 9.4
). The corps
of 300 ἱππεῖς
) formed a sort of body-guard for the king, and
consisted of the flower of the young soldiers. Though called horsemen,
they fought on foot (Strabo, p. 482). Their commanders were called
(Xen. Rep. Lac. 4.3
Hesych. sub voce
Thucydides in his account of the battle of Mantineia (5.68) describes the
Lacedaemonian [p. 1.770]
army as divided into seven
lochi, each containing four pentecostyes, and each pentecostys four
enomotiae, with thirty-two men in each; so that the lochus here is a
body of 512 men, and is commanded by a polemarch. It is clear,
therefore, that the lochus of Thucydides, in this instance, answers to
the mora of Xenophon. It would be absurd to suppose such a large number
to be the ordinary lochus or tactical unit; the largest such tactical
lochus known is the Sacred Lochus at Thebes, which consisted of 300. As
on this occasion the pentecostys contained four instead of two
enomotiae, and as four pentecostyes were thrown together into one
division, Thucydides may have been led to call this division a lochus,
as being next above the pentecostys, though it was, in fact, a mora
commanded by a polemarch (Thirlwall, l.c.
445; comp. Arnold on Thuc. 5.68
appears to use the terms lochus and mora indiscriminately (Λακώνων πολιτ.
Fr. 5 and 6; Photius s. v.
). The suggestion of Arnold
) that one of the seven lochi spoken of
consisted of the Brasidean soldiers and Neodamodes, who would not be
taken account of in the ordinary divisions of the Spartan forces, is not
unlikely, and would explain the discrepancy between the number of lochi
(or morae) here, and the ordinary number of six morae; but even
independently of it, no difficulty need be felt with respect to that
particular point, as the whole arrangement of the troops on that
occasion was a departure from the ordinary divisions. The Neodamodes
were not usually incorporated in the morae (Xen. Hell. 4.3.15
). The mora was used for the arrangement in
the camp (Xen. Rep. Lac.
), and formed the highest unit for the levy, but
tactically it had no importance (Bauer, op. cit.
It seems a probable opinion that the number of morae in the Spartan
military force had reference to the districts into which Laconia was
divided. These, including Sparta and the districts immediately around
it, were six in number. Perhaps, as Thirlwall suggests, the division of
the army may have been founded on the fiction that one mora was assigned
for the protection of each district. The same writer also suggests a
very probable explanation of the λόχος
which Herodotus (9.53
) speaks of, and of which Thucydides (1.20
), though doubtless erroneously, denies the existence.
Thirlwall suggests that as each mora consisted of four lochi, the four
lochi of the mora belonging to the district of Sparta may have been
distributed on the same principle among the four κῶμαι
--Limnae, Cynosura, Mesoa, and Pitana--of which
Sparta was composed.1
Gilbert (op. cit.
1.74) supposes that
was composed of the
inhabitants of Pitana, but that its official title was not derived from
A Spartan army, divided as above described, was drawn up in the dense
array of the phalanx, the depth of which depended upon circumstances. An
sometimes made but a
single file (reading εἰς ἕνα
sometimes was drawn up in three or six files (στίχοι,
Xen. Rep. Lac.
; or λόχοι,
as they are
called by Polybius). At the battle of Mantineia the phalanx was eight
deep, so that each enomotia made four files (Thuc.
; comp. Xen. Hell.
). At the battle
of Leuctra it was twelve deep (Xen. Hell.
, § 12). The enomotarch stood at the head of his file
), or at the head of
the right-hand file, if the enomotia was broken up into more than one.
The last man was called οῦραγός.
divisions of the rows of twelve men each were πεμπάδες
; cf. Cyr.
2.1, 22). It was a matter of great importance that he, like the
enomotarch, should be a man of strength and skill, as in certain
evolutions he would have to lead the movements (Xen. Mem. 3.1
7.5, 5; cf. 3.4, 41; Hom.
). The commander-in-chief, who was usually the king
(after the affair of Demaratus and Cleomenes it was the practice not to
send out both kings together, Hdt. 5.75
comp. 6.73), had his station sometimes in the centre (as at Mantineia,
), but more commonly (as at
Leuctra) on the right wing. The deployments by which the arrangements of
the phalanx were altered took place under the direction of the
enomotarch. When the troops were drawn up in a line in the ordinary
battle array, they were said to be ἐπὶ
Supposing an enomotia to consist of twenty-five
men, including its leader, and to be drawn up eight deep, the front line
of the army would consist of 288. In an ordinary march the army advanced
(or κατὰ κέρας,
Xen. Hell. 7.4
, § 23), the
first enomotia of the right wing filing off, and the rest in succession
following it; so that if the enomotia was drawn up in three or two
files, the whole army would march in three or two files. The most usual
arrangement was in two files, εἰς δύα
(Xen. Hell. 7.4
, § 23,
3.1.22; Polyaen. 2.1.10
). According as
there were one or two or four columns, the march was called μονοφαλαγγία, διφαλαγγία, τετραφαλαγγία,
of which there are the most various species given in the tactical
writers (Asclep. 11; Ael. Tact.
37). If an army in
marching order had to form in phalanx, the movement began with the
hindmost enomotia of the column, which placed itself on the left of
) and on a line with
) the enomotia before
it. These two then performed the same evolution with respect to the last
but two, and so on, till all were in a line with the first enomotia,
which now, with the commander-in-chief at its head, occupied the
extremity of the right wing. This evolution was called παραγωγή
(Xen. Rep. Lac.
11.6), a name also given to the reverse movement, when a phalanx had to
fall into marching order, and to subordinate movements of the same kind
for changing the depth of the phalanx. In the latter the evolutions were
conducted on much [p. 1.771]
the same principle. Thus, if
the depth of the phalanx was to be diminished by half, the hinder
portion of each enomotia marched forwards and placed itself on the left
of the half in front of it. Similarly, if the depth had to be increased,
the left-hand portion of each enomotia faced about towards the right,
took up its station in the rear, and
then, facing to the left again, assumed its proper position. (Xen.
11.8.) The facing to the right was always
the usage, because if the evolution were performed in the face of an
enemy, the shielded side could be presented towards him. Wheeling to the
right was called ἐπὶ δόρυ
to the left ἐπ᾽ ἀσπίδα.
cavalry the former was also called ἐπὶ
the latter ἐφ᾽
Modifications of this evolution, conducted on the
same principle, were employed if the depth had to be increased or
diminished in any other proportion. It is very likely that at those
points of the files where in such evolutions they would have to
separate, there were placed men suitable for taking their station in the
front rank, where it was always an object to get the best men. These
would answer to the δεκάδαρχοι
2.1, 23; comp. Hipparch.
4.9.) If an enemy appeared in the rear, it was not enough that the
soldiers should face about towards the enemy. The Spartan tactics
required that the stoutest soldier should be opposed to the enemy. This
was accomplished by the manoeuvre termed ἐξελιγμός.
Of this there were three varieties:--1.
In this the leader of
each file kept his place, only turning towards the enemy; the man behind
) retreating and again
taking up his station behind him, and so on. In this way the army
retreated from the enemy by a distance equal to its depth. 2. The
(the one usually adopted by the Macedonian phalanx
of Philip and Alexander). This was the reverse of the preceding, the
rear man remaining stationary and the others advancing successively one
before the other. In this way of course the army advanced against the
enemy by a distance equal to its depth. 3. The
In this the leader and rearman, the second and
last but two, and so on, changed places, so that the whole army remained
at the same distance from the enemy. This species was also called
Xen. Rep. Lac.
3.12.8; Aelianus, Tact.
26, 27, 33). These evolutions
would of course leave the general on the left wing. If it was deemed
expedient that he should be upon the right, it was not enough that he
should simply remove from the left to the right, the whole army had to
reverse its position, so that what was the left wing should become the
right. This was effected by an exeligmus, termed (at least by the later
tacticians) ἐξελιγμὸς κατὰ ζυγά,
contrasted with the ἐξελιγμὸς κατὰ
Further evolutions were the different kinds of
). The quarter
wheel was called ἀναστροφή,
the three quarters
in which one
quarter wheel more brought them back to their original position,
The pivot was the
1.42). If the army changed its front by wheeling round through a half
circle, round one corner as a pivot, the movement seems to have been
expressed by περιπτύσσειν
(Xen. Anab. 1.1. 0
Hermann-Droysen, 1.47, note 2). One more evolution remains to be
noticed. Suppose an enemy appeared on the right, while the army was
marching in column, two abreast. The different lochi
wheeled round through a quadrant of a circle, round their
leader, as on a pivot, so that the army presented twenty-four columns to
the enemy, consisting of two files each, and separated by a considerable
interval from each other. The depth of the whole body was then lessened,
and these intervals filled up by the ordinary paragoge, and by the
different lochi siding up nearer to each other in case the intervals
still remained too great. If it was necessary for the general to take
his station on the right, this would be effected, as in other cases, by
(cf. Grote, 2.457).
Similar manoeuvres took place if the enemy appeared on the left, though,
as this was the shielded side of the soldiers, and the danger was
consequently less, it was frequently thought sufficient to keep the
enemy in check by means of the cavalry and light troops. (Xen.
11.10.) Bauer (op.
257), however, represents this manoeuvre as being effected
according to a different order. He supposes (1) the ordinary παραγωγὴ ἐς μέτωπον παρ᾽ ἀσπίδας
a phalanx; then (2) a wheel round through a quadrant of a circle to the
right or left, according to the quarter from which the enemy appeared.
One point that a general had to be on his guard against was the tendency
of an army, when advancing ἐπὶ
to sheer off towards the right, each man pressing
closer to his righthand neighbour in order to protect his unshielded
side, so that the right wing frequently got beyond the left wing of the
enemy. (See especially the account of the battle of Mantineia, Thuc. 5.71
.) A slight consideration will show
that the analogy traced between the evolutions of an army and those of a
chorus is by no means fanciful. One kind of ἐξελιγμὸς
was, we have seen, called χορεῖος.
The importance attached to the war
dances among the Spartans as a means of military training was
consequently very great. [CHORUS
When an army was led to attack a height, it was usually drawn up in what
were termed λόχοι ὄρθιοι,
which merely implies that the lochi had greater depth than breadth
(παράμηκες μὲν λέγεται πᾶν τάγμα ὃ ἂν
τὸ μῆκος ἔχῃ πλεῖον τοῦ βάθους, ὄρθιον δὲ ὃ ἂν τὸ
βάθος τοῦ μήκους,
The breadth of the lochi would, of course, vary according to
circumstances. They were drawn up with considerable intervals between
them. In this way the army presented a considerable front to the enemy,
and was less liable to be thrown into confusion than if drawn up in
close phalanx, while at the same time the intervals between the lochi
were not left so great that the enemy could safely press in between
them. (Xen. Anab. 4.2
, § 11; 8,
§ § 10-19; 5.4.22; Cyrop.
4.3.17; Polyaen. Strat.
There is no ground for affirming that a λόχος
was drawn up in two files, or even one, as Sturz
) and Grote (8.403) say. Such an
arrangement would be perfectly useless for attack. This [p. 1.772]
system of arrangements, which in breaking up the rigid
phalanx formed some approximation to the Roman manipular tactics, was
not, however, employed except in the particular case mentioned. This was
an innovation due to the genius of Xenophon, and it was frequently
employed in later Greek tactics.
In special circumstances, such as those of the retreating Greeks in the
the arrangement in a hollow
square was adopted (cf. the τετράγωνος
in Thuc. 4.125
), and in
the retreat from Syracuse (Thuc. 7.78
troops being so placed that by simply facing about they presented a
front for battle on whichever side it was necessary. But if the enemy
were following, it proved a very bad arrangement (Xen. Anab. 3.4
). The term πλαίσιον
generally applied to an army so arranged, whether square or oblong.
Afterwards the term πλαίσιον
restricted to the square, the oblong being called πλίνθιον.
Though at first sight the arrangement and manoeuvres of a Lacedaemonian
army seem exceedingly complex, they were in reality quite the reverse,
owing to the carefully graduated system of subordination which prevailed
(σχεδὸν γάρ τοι πᾶν τὸ στρατόπεδον τῶν
Λακεδαιμονίων ἄρχοντες ἀρχόντων εἰσἰ,
). The commands of the general
were issued in the first place to the polemarchs, by these to the
lochagi, by these again to the pentecosteres, by the latter to the
enomotarchs, and by these last to their respective divisions. From the
orderly manner in which this was done, commands were transmitted with
great rapidity: every soldier, in fact, regulating the movements of the
man behind him, every two being connected together as πρωτοστάτης
In later times the king was usually accompanied by two ephors, as
controllers and advisers (Xen.
Rep. Lac. 13.5
). These, with the
polemarchs, the four Pythii, three peers (ὅμοιοι
), who had to provide for the necessities of the king
in war,--among whom was the κρεοδαίτης,
who was an important person, the post being held by Lysander (Plut. Lys. 23
and some other officers, such as the
treasurers, and the
judges of disputes
(Xen. Rep. Lac.
), constituted the οἱ περὶ
of the king [DAMOSIA
]. The polemarchs also had some sort of
suite or staff with them, called συμφορεῖς
(Plut. Pel. 17
Xen. Hell. 6.4
, § 14), just
as the king had the 300 so-called ίππεῖς.
The polemarchs took the place of the king in cases
of emergency. With the exception of the enomotarchs, the superior
officers and those immediately about them are not to be reckoned with
the division which they led. They stood distinct, forming what was
called the ἄγημα
(Xen. Rep. Lac. 11.9
The Spartan and Perioecan hoplites were accompanied in the field by
helots, partly in the capacity of attendants, partly to serve as
lightarmed troops. The number attached to an army was probably not
uniform. At Plataeae each Spartan was accompanied by seven helots; but
that was probably an extraordinary case. One helot in particular of
those attached to each Spartan was called his θεράπων,
and performed the functions of an armourer or
shieldbearer (Eustath. ad
533). Xenophon (Xenoph. Hell. 4.5.14
) calls them ὑπασπισταί
(cf. Hdt. 5.111
; Müller, Dor.
3.3.2), or δορυφόροι
(Xen. Hell. 4.5
§ 8). In extraordinary cases, helots served as hoplites, and in
that case it was usual to give them their liberty (Thuc. 7.19
). Distinct corps were sometimes composed
entirely of these Neodamodes. A separate troop in the Lacedaemonian army
was formed by the Sciritae (Σκιρῖται
originally, no doubt, inhabitants of the district Sciritis. In battle,
they occupied the extreme left of the line. On a march, they formed the
vanguard, and were usually employed on the most dangerous kinds of
service. (Thuc. 5.67
, with Arnold's note;
Xen. Cyrop. 4.2
, § 1.)
Similarly the Tegeans laid claim to a position on the right wing (Hdt. 9.26
Light-armed troops (ψιλοί
) are mentioned
in the fourth year of the Peloponnesian War (Thuc.
), and in 424 B.C. a corps of bowmen was established by
the Spartans (Thuc. 4.55
). Brasidas used
great numbers of such light-armed troops (ib. 111, 123, 125); and they
appear later in the armies of Agesilaus (Xen.
Archidamus (7.4, 22). The peltasts from Orchomenus which Xenophon
6.5, 15) were certainly mercenaries; so
that we may infer that to a large degree the Spartans used mercenaries
and allies for light-armed.
Though the tyrants (e. g. Pisistratus, Hdt.
) and some Peloponnesian states (e. g. Corinth) had
previously a large mercenary force (Thuc.
), the first appearance of a μισθοφόρος ὄχλος ξενικὸς
of the Spartans was in
Acarnania in 426 B.C. (Thuc. 3.109
Brasidas used mercenaries frequently (Thuc.
); also Lysander. (Xen. Hell. 2.4
), Thibron (who wanted 300 mercenaries from Athens, ib.
3.1, 4), and Agesilaus (ib. 6.5, 15). The expedition of Cyrus gave a
great impulse to the development of a mercenary army. In fact, about the
time of Agesilaus they were so numerous that Xenophon says the citizens
were only used for garrison duty, while mercenaries were employed for
war (ib. 4.4, 14); and further (7.1, 23) that Arcadian mercenaries (they
were the great people for supplying this kind of force: cf. Thuc. 7.57
; Hesych. sub
) were always used
for an invasion of Attica. The Carians, too, appear frequently as
mercenaries. The Spartans generally contented themselves with sending
out thirty of their own body to take the chief posts of command in the
army (cf. Bauer, op. cit.
p. 261). The state
used to look for a general of known ability, and it was he
who used to agree with the soldiers, it was
that the latter used to look for pay and
provisions, and so practically they became his soldiers--they were no
longer Spartans or Arcadians or Achaeans, but Brasideans or Cyreans. In
later times there was a regular market of mercenaries at Taenarum (Diod. 17.108
). The pay was generally about a
drachma a day (Thuc. 7.27
), to the λοχαγὸς
twice as much, and to the στρατηγὸς
four times as much (cf. Xen. Anab. 4.6
; and Gilbert, op. cit.
divisions of the mercenary force were not those of the φρουρά.
The divisions were much smaller, the
being the highest unit for
both cavalry and infantry. The τάξις
cavalry was commanded by the hipparch, and that of the infantry by the
taxiarch. The τάξις
fell [p. 1.773]
commanded by λοχαγυί,
iv. i, 26; 5.2, 13). This breaking up of the
phalanx into smaller tactical units which were capable of being used
independently is the chief military feature of the mercenary forces.
When the φρουρὰ
was declared, the
Spartans generally required, beside the native citizen force, a definite
proportion of allies, καὶ τῶν συμμάχων τὸ
(Xen. Hell. 4.6
), which was very frequently
two-thirds of the available force (Thuc.
). The number of allies compared with that of the Spartans
was very great: in one case the proportion was 10,000 to 1500 (Thuc. 1.107
). Later, when the system of
mercenaries was fully in vogue, the allied forces could be commuted for
a money payment. A hoplite was considered equal to two lightarmed, and a
horse-soldier to four hoplites--commutation for a hoplite being three
Aeginetan oboli (Xen. Hell. 5.2
). The forces of the allies, besides their own commanders
(ἀπὸ τῶν πόλεων στρατηγοί,
; Xen. Rep. Lac. 13.4
), had also assigned to
them special commanders, who were Spartans. These commanders were called
; Xen. Hell. 3.5
); and they were sometimes used in times
of peace as governors in the allied states (ib. 5.2, 7).
The arms of the phalanx consisted of the long spear and a short sword
). The chief part of the
defensive armour was the large brazen shield,--generally marked with the
letter A, signifying Λακεδαιμονίων
359, Kock; Photius, s. v. λάμβδα
), just as the Sicyonians had Σ
on their shields (Xen. Hell. 4.4
covered the body from the shoulder to the knee (Tyrtaeus, fr. 2.23),
suspended, as in ancient times, by a thong round the neck, and managed
by a simple handle or ring (πόρπαξ
The improved Carian handle (ὀχάνη
not introduced till the time of Cleomenes III. Besides this, they had
the ordinary armour of the hoplite [ARMA
]. The helmets were made of felt and called πῖλοι
, and Arnold's note: though Poppo takes these to be
cuirasses). The heavy-armed soldiers wore a scarlet uniform (Xen.
2.7). A day's march in the Anabasis
about 15 miles. Droysen (op. cit.
p. 83) has
collected a variety of statistics of the time taken to effect certain
marches in Greek history ; but we cannot be sure of the distance, owing
to our ignorance for the most part of the courses of the Greek roads
between the places. In marching through a friendly country a market was
usually granted to the soldiers by the inhabitants (Thuc. 6.44
; Xen. Hell. 3.4
): in an enemy's country they took what they wanted,
getting vegetables and fuel are frequently mentioned, λαχανισμὸς καὶ φρυγανισμός
or else made formal requisitions, προνομαί
5.2, 24). In
transmarine expeditions the Greek armies often took provisions with them
): though we hear of ἔμποροι
and an ἀγοραῖος ὄχλος
army (Thuc. 1
. c.; Xen. Hell. 1.6
so that no doubt a large part of the provisions were purchased; so, too,
we may be certain that the ἑξαμήνου
mentioned in Xen. Hell.
, and the τροφὴ
, were money. The baggage and
camp-followers came after
the line of march,
except in the rare occasions of night-marches, when they, as being the
slowest, went in front (Xen. An.
5.3, 37). We saw that the citizen-soldiers had
each a servant, but the mercenaries did not keep such. Besides these
servants, there was a large mass of impedimenta,
such as the traders, booty, cattle, soldiers'
mistresses, &c. (Xen. An.
4.1, 14), which Xenophon tells us were a serious shackle on the army
(ib. 3.2, 27). Among the Spartans the baggage was all looked after by
the ἄρχοντες τῶν σκευοφόρων
(Xen. Hell. 3.4
; Rep. Lac.
13.4). The Spartan encampments
were circular. Only the heavy-armed were stationed within it, the
cavalry being placed to look out, and the helots being kept as much as
possible outside. As another precaution against the latter, every
soldier was obliged always to carry his spear about with him (Xen. Rep. Lac.
). Though strict discipline was, of course, kept up in the
camp, it was less rigorous than in the city itself (Plut. Lyc. 22
; comp. Hdt. 7.208
). Preparatory to a battle the Spartan soldier
dressed his hair and crowned himself as others would do for a feast. The
Spartans at Corinth, when but a stadium from the enemy, offered the
customary sacrifice to Artemis Agrotera (Xen.
). The signal
for attack in ancient times was given by priests of Ares (πυρφόροι
), who threw lighted torches into
the interval between the two armies (Schol. ad
Eur. Phoen. 1186
). Afterwards it was
given not by the trumpet, but by the music of flutes, and sometimes also
of the lyre and cithara, to which the men sang the battle song (παιὰν ἐμβατήριος
), such as Tyrtaeus wrote
; Plut. l.c.
), or raised a wild shout (ἀλαλά, ἐλελεῦ
). The object of the music
was not so much to inspirit the men as simply to regulate the march of
the phalanx (Thuc. 5.70
). This rhythmical
regularity of movement was a point to which the Spartans attached great
importance. The Greeks had not standards like the Roman signa.
which we hear of being raised and lowered (Thuc. 1.63
) were signals rather than
standards. Signals were given by fire-beacons also (φρυκτοί,
, and Arnold's note). Trumpets
were little used except to sound the attack (τὸ
) or retreat (τὸ
). (Cf. Hermann-Droysen, 1.54.) To prevent
the ranks being broken the soldiers were forbidden to stop in order to
strip a slain enemy while the fight lasted, or to pursue a routed enemy.
The younger hoplites or the cavalry or lightarmed troops were despatched
for this purpose (Xen. Hell. 4.4
§ 16; 5.14.16). All the booty collected had to be handed over
to the laphyropolae and ephors, by whom it was sold. The loss in battle
was always much greater on the side of the vanquished than on that of
the victors: for the wounded of the former could not be carried away,
the beaten side not having any start as they have in modern battles; and
so either were killed by the victors or bled to death. As average
instances may be taken the battles of Delium and Corinth: the defeated
party at each of these lost 1 in 7 men, the victors at the former 1 in
26 and at the latter 1 in 23. The loss of the Spartans at Leuctra (1 in
2) was the greatest we know of [p. 1.774]
in an important
battle. (Cf. Hermann-Droysen, 1.101.)
The rigid inflexibility of the Spartan tactics rendered them indisposed
to the attack of fortified places (Thuc.
). At the battle of Plataeae, they even assigned to the
Athenians the task of storming the palisade formed by the γέρρα
of the Persians (Hdt. 9.70
In Athens, the military system was in its leading principles the same as
among the Spartans, though differing in detail, and carried out with
less exactness; inasmuch as, when Athens became powerful, greater
attention was paid to the navy. Of the times before Solon, we have but
little information. We learn that there were twelve phratriae, and in
each of these four naucrariae, each of which was bound to furnish two
horsemen and one ship (Photius, Suidas, s. v. ναυκραρία
: Poll. 8.108). Of the four classes into which
the citizens were arranged by the constitution of Solon, the citizens of
the first and second served as cavalry, or as commanders of the infantry
(still it need not be assumed that the ἱππεῖς
never served as heavyarmed infantry), those of the
third class (ζευγῖται
) formed the
heavy-armed infantry. The Thetes served either as light-armed troops on
land, or on board the ships. The same general principles remained when
the constitution was remodelled by Cleisthenes. All citizens qualified
to serve either as horsemen, or in the ranks of the heavy-armed
infantry, were enrolled in a list [CATALOGUS
]. The case of Thetes serving as
heavy-armed soldiers is spoken of as an exception to the general rule;
and even when it was the case, they were not enrolled in the catalogus
). Every citizen was liable
to service from his eighteenth to his sixtieth year. On reaching their
eighteenth year, the young citizens were formally enrolled (εἰς τὸ ληξιαρχικὸν γραμματεῖον
received a shield and spear in a public assembly of the people, binding
themselves by oath to perform rightly the duties of a citizen and a
soldier (Aristot. ap. Harpocr. p. 241). The actual words of the oath are
given in Poll. 8.105, 106 (cf. Hermann-Droysen, op.
1.57). During the first two years, they were only liable
to service in Attica itself, chiefly as garrison soldiers in the
different fortresses in the country. During this period, they were
and their commander
(Harpocr. s. v.
: Pollux, 8.105; Lycurg.
§ 76; Thuc.
levies were made under the direction of the generals [STRATEGI]. The soldiers were selected either
according to age, as among the Spartans (Aristot. ap. Harpocr. s. v.
and Phot. s. v. στρατία
ἡλικίαν ἐκπέμπωσι, προσγράφουσι ἀπὸ τίνος ἄρχοντος
ἐπωνύμου μέχρι τίνος δεῖ στρατεύεσθαι;
being, of course, those in whose year of office they had entered the
military service), the expeditions being then called ἔξοδοι ἐν τοῖς ἐπωνύμοις
: or else
according to a certain rotation (Aeschin. Fals. Leg.
330.168, τὰς ἐκ διαδοχῆς ἐξόδους
Another kind of levy was that called ἐν τοῖς
It appears to have followed the former; each
being used alternately (ἐκ διαδοχῆς,
Aeschin. Fals. Leg.
§ 168). This expression
ἐν τοῖς μέρεσι
interpreted. Some (e. g. Droysen, Gilbert, &c.) consider that
the levy ἐν τοῖς ἐπωνύμοις
those of the specified years, while that
ἐν τοῖς μέρεσι
only called out a
of these in some specified
order of rotation (cf. Dem. Ol.
2.31., πάντας ἐξιέναι κατὰ μέρος ἕως ἂν ἅπαντες
). Others again (Bauer, Rustow and
Köchly) suppose that ἐν τοῖς
refers, not to the levy by years but by tribes or
portions of tribes. (There is a full discussion on the subject by Lange,
1.160; cf. Gilbert, op. cit.
1.302.) Both these kinds of levies
were, however, only partial ones: when the levy was universal, it was
said to be πανδημεί.
was generally the Lyceum (Schol. on Aristoph. Peace 356
), though occasionally in other places
(Andoc. de Myst.
§ 45). Each soldier was
expected to be provided with provisions for three days (Aristoph. Ach. 197
). The services of
those below or above the ordinary military age, were only called for on
emergencies, or for guarding the walls. (Cf. Thuc.
.) Members of the
senate during the period of their office, farmers of the revenue,
choreutae at the Dionysia during the festival; in later times, traders
by sea also, were exempted from military service (Lycurg.
§ 34; Demosth. c. Neaer.
p. 1353.27; c. Mid.
p. 516.15; Aristoph. Eccl. 1027
, with the
Schol.). Any one bound to serve who attempted to avoid doing so, could
be accused on a γραφὴ ἀστρατείας.
This, with the γραφὴ λιποταξίου
the γραφὴ δειλίας,
were the chief
indictments to which the soldier was liable [ASTRATEIAS GRAPHÉ]. The resident aliens commonly
served as heavy-armed soldiers, especially for the purpose of
garrisoning the city, but only in case of an universal levy (πανδημεί
). They were prohibited from serving
as cavalry (Xen. de Vect.
9.6). Slaves were only employed as soldiers in cases of great necessity,
as at Marathon (according to Paus. 1.32.3
and Arginusae (Xen. Hell. 1.6
§ 17). The levy of the cleruchs and allies appears to have been
made ἐκ καταλόγου
); and recruiting was conducted by
Athenian officers when the order was given (στρατιὰν ἐπαγγέλλειν ἐς τοῦς συμμάχους,
). The Athenians often used the
allies solely for their own special wars (cf. Bauer, op. cit.
p. 290; Grote, 5.199); though when we hear of
Lemnians and Imbrians and other peoples who had large numbers of
cleruchs serving, such are generally to be understood as referring to
The dress and armour of the hoplites consisted of a white jerkin
) which reached down to the
hips. Over this was the θώραξ
]; and over this again
they wore a cloak which in the case of officers was purple (Aristoph. Peace 1175
). Of course in
battle they took this off. On their legs were greaves [OCREAE], and on their head a plumed helmet
]. Their arms were
a round or oval shield [CLIPEUS
], short sword [GLADIUS
], and lance [HASTA
]. These arms the soldier appears to have provided
himself, but the orphans of those who fell in battle, on arriving at
man's estate, received a πανοπλία
the state (Aeschin. Ctes.
Of the details of the Athenian military organisation, we have no distinct
accounts as we have of those of Sparta. There was less exactness than
among the Spartans. Especially the [p. 1.775]
were not so particular that the same individuals should always hold the
same positions in the phalanx or its subdivisions (Xen. Rep. Lac. 11.6
); and more frequent exemption
from service was allowed than among the Spartans (cf. Bauer, op. cit.
p. 270). The heavy-armed troops, as was
the universal practice in Greece, nearly always fought in phalanx order,
very rarely in a square (Thuc. 6.67
were arranged in bodies in a manner dependent on the political divisions
of the citizens. The soldiers of each tribe formed a separate body in
the army, also called a tribe, and these bodies stood in some
preconcerted order (Hdt. 6.11
; Plut. Arist. 5
; Xen. Hell. 4.2
, § 19, with Schneider's notes). Each
appears to have formed a
§ 82, cf. § 79), and the members of each dome probably
stood together (Isaeus, de Pyrrhi hered.
§ 23). A further subdivision was
that into λόχοι
3.4, 1; Isocr. 15.117). The strength of the λόχος,
however, cannot be determined; and it must be
remembered that λόχος
is the most
ordinary term for the largest tactical unit, which varied, though it was
generally about 100 men (Bauer, op. cit.
248). The συσσίτια
§ 79; Isaeus, Nicostr.
§ 18) are
voluntary unions of friends, and we cannot infer from them that the
members belonged to the same deme or even to the same branch of the
service. Before Potidaea the hoplite Socrates of Alopece was a σύσσιτος
of the knight Alcibiades of
Scambonidae (Plat. Symp.
219 E). Every hoplite was
accompanied by an attendant (ὑπηρέτης,
), like the Helots among the
Spartans, to take charge of his baggage, and carry his shield on .a
march. Each horseman also had a servant, called ἱπποκόμος,
to attend to his horse (Xen. Hell. 2.4
It would appear that in 490 B.C. there was no cavalry (Hdt. 6.112
). In the time of Cimon it was 300,
soon after 600 (Andoc. de Pace,
5; Schol. on Aristoph. Kn. 627
at the beginning of the Peloponnesian war 1200, of whom 200 were hired
Scythian bowmen (Thuc. 2.13
; Aristoph. Kn. 225
). The number 1000
remained down to the time of Demosthenes (Xen.
; Dem. de Symm.
181.13). It is probable that the organisation of cavalry was due to the
experience the Athenians obtained in the Persian wars with regard to
that service. The cavalry was commanded by two Hipparchs, part of whose
duty it was to see that the number was kept up to the 1000 (Xen. Hipp. 1.2
was made one of the
liturgies of the rich (Xen. Oec.
; Lycurg. Leocr.
§ 139), the
performance of which could be enforced by law (Xen. Hipp. 1.9
). It could only attach to the
rich, for an ordinary horse cost as much as three minae (Isaeus,
de Dicaeog. hered.
§ 43), and a war-horse
would cost a great deal more. Of course those only were required to
serve who were physically capable of doing so efficiently; but such were
required to serve as long as they were able (Xen. Hipp. 1.2
): so we find the corps divided
(ib. 1.17; 2.3). It belonged to the duties
of the hipparch to train the horsemen (Xen. Mem.
), especially in being
able to leap up on horseback (Xen.
Hipp. 1.1. 7
)--for they had no saddles or
stirrups--in throwing the javelin (ib. 1.6, 21), and in kinds of sham
), in which each
hipparch commanded five tribes (1.20, 3.11; Aristot. fr.
56 M.); for the cavalry were divided by tribes (Xen. Hell. 2.4
), each governed by a phylarch (Xen. Hipp. 1.8
). The hipparch appears to have
had to examine the horses (Ken. Mem.
3.3, 4), which must
have been very necessary when one remembers the various requirements of
a warhorse as given by Xenophon (de re Equestri,
8.1). The hipparch and the phylarch were elected by the people (Aristoph. Birds 798
). At the
beginning of the year the βουλὴ
review of the knights. They went through exercises (ἀκοντισμός, ἀνθιππασία,
which are described at length by Xenophon (Hipp.
and if this examination (δοκιμασία
proved satisfactory and the horses seemed suitable (1.13), a fee for
) was paid to each
horseman (Suid. s. v.). Besides this, pay (μισθός
) was given to the cavalry to the amount of 40 talents
a year, i. e. 240 drachmas for each horseman (cf. Dem.
1.28, p. 48 R.; Boeckh,
, i.3 317 ff., 340
ff.). A knight regularly appointed could not serve as a hoplite ; and if
he did not pass the examination and yet attempted to serve, he was
disgraced (Lys. Alc.
2.7; 1.8, 9). The arms of the
cavalry were two spears of cornelwood (Xen.
de re Eq. 12.1. 2
, 13) and a small sword
like a cleaver. Full account of the armour is to be found in Xen. de re Eq. 12.1
The cavalry appear to have been an imposing corps, and so were much used
in processions (Aristoph. Frogs
; Dem. Phil.
i. p. 47.26; Xen. Hipp. 3.2
). Besides the
light-armed soldiers drawn from the ranks of the poorer citizens, there
was at Athens a regiment of Thracian slaves, armed with bows. The number
of these increased from 300, who were purchased after the battle of
Salamis, to 1000 or 1200 (AESCHIN. FALS. LEG.
§ 173, 174; Boeckh, Staatshaushaltung,
2.100.11). They, however, were generally employed as a sort of police or
city guard. Besides these, however, the Athenians had a troop of bowmen
of their own citizens, amounting, at the beginning of the Peloponnesian
war, to 1600 (Thuc. 2.13
). They were
commanded by τόξαρχοι
1.79). The two classes of ἀστικοὶ
are mentioned in C. I. A.
Besides the 1000 knights, there were at the beginning of the
Peloponnesian war 200 ἱπποτοξόται,
mostly taken from the Scythians (Thuc. 2.13
compared with Aristoph. Kn. 225
was considered degrading for a citizen to serve in this corps (Lys.
2.6). They used to ride before the hipparchs
(Xen. Mem. 3.3
). There is an elaborate account of the
military forces of Athens in Boeckh (op. cit.
For the command of the army, there were chosen every year ten generals
[STRATEGI] and ten taxiarchs [TAXIARCHI
]. Respecting the
military functions of the ἄρχων
see the article ARCHON
The number of strategi sent with an army
was not uniform. Three was a common number. Sometimes one was invested
with the supreme command; at other times, they either took the command
in turn (as at Marathon), or conducted their operations by common
consent (as in the Sicilian expedition). [p. 1.776]
The practice of paying the troops when upon service was introduced by
Pericles (Ulpian. ad
Demosth. περὶ συντάξ.
p. 50 a). The pay consisted
partly of wages (μισθός
), partly of
provisions, or, more commonly, provision-money (σιτηρέσιον
). The ordinary μισθὸς
of a hoplite was two obols a day. The σιτηρέσιον
amounted to two obols more (Dem.
1.28, p. 48). Hence the life of a soldier was
called, proverbially, τετρωβόλου βίος
(Eustath. ad Od.
p. 1405; ad Il.
Higher pay, however, was sometimes given, as at the siege of Potidaea
the soldiers received two drachmas apiece, one for themselves, the other
for their attendants. This, doubtless, included the provisionmoney
). Officers received twice as
much; horsemen, three times; generals, four times as much (comp. Xen. Anab. 7.6
, § 1; 3.9).
As regards the military strength of the Athenians, we find 10,000
heavy-armed soldiers at Marathon (Just. 2.9
8,000 heavy-armed, and as many light-armed, at Plataeae (Hdt. 9.29
); and at the beginning of the
Peloponnesian war there were 13,000 heavy-armed ready for foreign
service, and 16,000 consisting of those beyond the limits of the
ordinary military age and of the metoeci, for garrison service (Thuc. 2.13
It was the natural result of the national character of the Athenians and
their democratical constitution, that military discipline was much less
stringent among them than among the Spartans (χαλεπαὶ γὰρ αἱ ὑμέτεραι φύσεις ἄρξαι,
), and after defeat especially it
was often found extremely difficult to maintain it. The generals had
some power of punishing military offences on the spot, such as
treasonable correspondence with the enemy (Lys. Agorat.
§ 67); but the punishment for insubordination was trifling
§ 43). For the greater
number of offences, the trial only took place after the return of the
army home before the generals (Lys. Alc.
1.21), or the
taxiarchs as their substitutes (Dem. in Booet. de nom.
§ 17), and a jury of persons who had served in the army (Lys.
1.15); the punishments were various kinds of
(Andoc. de Myst.
§ 74). Various rewards also were held out for those
who especially distinguished themselves for their courage or conduct, in
the shape of chaplets, statues, &c. (cf. Aeschin. Fals.
§ 169). In connexion with these, the λόγος ἐπιτάφιος,
spoken over those who had
fallen in war, and the τάφος δημόσιος,
must not be omitted. Respecting the provision made for those who were
disabled in war, see the article ADYNATI
The Peltastae (πελτασταί
), so called
from the shield which they bore [PELTA
], were a kind of troops of which we hear very little
before the end of the Peloponnesian war. The first time we have any
mention of them is in Thuc. 4.111
they are spoken of as being in the army of Brasidas. With the more
frequent employment of mercenary troops a greater degree of attention
was bestowed upon the peltastae; and the Athenian general Iphicrates
introduced some important improvements in the mode of arming them,
combining as far as possible the peculiar advantages of heavy-(ὁπλῖται
) and light-armed (ψιλοί
) troops. Thus distant as well as close
combat was possible for them (Schol. on Eur. Rhes.
cf. Plut. Legg.
7.813 E). The great advantage of this
light infantry is well sketched by Xenophon (Xenoph. Hell. 2.4
Iphicrates substituted a linen corslet for the coat of mail worn by the
hoplites, and lessened the shield, while he doubled the length of the
spear and sword. He even took the pains to introduce for them an
improved sort of shoe, called after him Ἰφικρατίδες
(Pollux, 7.89). This equipment was
commonly adopted by mercenary troops, and proved very effective. The
almost total destruction of a mora of Lacedaemonian heavy-armed troops
by a body of peltastae under the command of Iphicrates was an exploit
that became very famous (Xen. Hell. 4.5
§ 11). The peltast style of arming was general among the
Achaeans until Philopoemen again introduced heavy armour (Pluto.
9) with the Macedonian phalanx.
When the use of mercenary troops became general, Athenian citizens seldom
served except as volunteers, and then in but small numbers. Thus we find
10,000 mercenaries sent to Olynthus with only 400 Athenians (Demosth.
p. 425.263). With 15,000 mercenaries sent
against Philip to Chaeroneia, there were 2,000 citizens (Demosth.
p. 306.237). It became not
uncommon also for those bound to serve in the cavalry to commute their
services for those of horsemen hired in their stead, and the duties of
were ill executed. The
employment of mercenaries also led in other respects to considerable
alterations in the military system of Greece. War came to be studied as
an art, and Greek generals, rising above the old simple rules of
warfare, became tacticians. The old method of arranging the troops, a
method still retained by Agesilaus at the battle of Coronea, was to draw
up the opposing armies in two parallel lines of greater or less depth,
according to the strength of the forces, the engagement commencing
usually very nearly at the same moment in all parts of the line. The
tactics employed by Epaminondas were a further development of the
Boeotian practice of deepening one point in the attacking line. Thus,
while the Greek army was generally drawn up eight deep, at Delium the
right Boeotian wing was twenty-five deep (Thuc.
). Epaminondas at Leuctra not only deepened the left wing
to fifty, placing the Sacred Band in front; but he further (and this was
a distinct innovation) moved it forward obliquely, λοξὴ φάλαγξ
; Diod. 15.55
; Plut. Pel. 23
so as to attack with this tremendous force the centre, and not as usual
the wings, of the enemy.
Thessaly under Jason of Pherae had a vast army: 8,000 cavalry and 20,000
hoplites, a large force of peltasts, and 6,000 mercenaries (Xen. Hell. 6.1
). This Jason has the distinction of having invented an
arrangement of cavalry in the shape of a rhomboid (Asclep. 7.2;. Ael.
16.3), but a still greater one in having been the first to take measures
for tending soldiers when sick (Xen.
Hell. vi. 1
, 6). The tyrants in Sicily had
very large armies, though probably the actual numbers are exaggerations
of their conquerors. Gelon is said to have had 10,000 mercenaries; and
Dionysius I. an army of 120,000 foot and 12,000 horse, together with
every kind [p. 1.777]
of improvement in engines, arms,
&c. He paid great attention to cavalry, and had mercenaries from
all quarters, Iberians and Gauls (Diod.
). For a full account of this great military organiser, see
; Grote, 10.240; Hermann-Droysen, op.
76; Bauer, op. cit.
§ 53, 54. The chief features in the Sicilians were their great
enterprise and their readiness to adopt all improvements as well in arms
as in tactics: thus, for example, Dion divided his army into λόχοι ὄρθιοι
in accordance with the
important improvement made by Xenophon (Plut. Dio
Under Philip and the subsequent Macedonian kings, the army was much more
systematically attended to, and we have much fuller accounts of it than
we have of the armies of free Hellas. Till Philip's time the Macedonians
had a very indifferent army. Archelaus indeed did something to improve
it; but the exact nature of his improvements we cannot be very certain
about (Thuc. 2.100
). Philip was the first
to organise the foot-soldiers in a phalanx, and to develop still further
the resources of the Macedonian cavalry, which had always been
excellent. In times past it was the cavalry who used to protect the
country, while the inhabitants fled into the fortified towns (Thuc. 1
. c.); but it is very rarely that we read
of foot-soldiers, such as the hoplites of the Lyncestae and the infantry
which Perdiccas supplied to Brasidas (Thuc.
During his stay at Thebes, Philip learned the tactics of Epaminondas,
though the Macedonians must have learned already much of the Greek
method of warfare of that day from the troops of the Athenians and
Spartans which were certainly carrying on war in Chalcidice, and from
the number of Greek mercenaries which were now everywhere abroad. With
special knowledge derived from these sources, and with a population
accustomed to monarchical rule, whom he could call out for service and
use according to his own judgment for as long as he pleased (cf. Dem.
305.235), Philip organised the
Macedonian army. The cavalry were the principal element; they were
called his Companions or ἕταιροι,
term applied in Macedonia to persons of distinction (Plut. Pel. 27
). Those summoned for service
in the infantry were called Foot-Companions (πεζέταιροι
), a term which shows that they were a kind of
subsequent appendage to the cavalry. These two terms, ἕταιροι
appear to have been originally applied to a
picked body-guard (Dem. Ol.
ii. p. 23.17), and gradually
to have been extended to the cavalry and infantry generally (cf. Grote,
11.386). The ἕταιροι,
800 in number
249), were mostly Macedonians,
but there were some Greeks and Thessalians amongst them. It has been
supposed that there were six ἴλαι
Companions and six τάξεις
Foot-Companions, one raised from each of the six recruiting districts of
Macedonia (Grote, l.c.
). But though the
divisions of the cavalry and infantry were called ἴλαι
respectively, and there were recruiting districts (cf. the analogous
division of Thessaly into four recruiting districts after its conquest,
iii. p. 117.26), we cannot be quite certain
that there were only six (see Hermann-Droysen, op.
108). Thirteen ἴλαι
mentioned in Plut. Alex. 16
, in such a
way as to imply that there were more. A picked body of the cavalry was
called the ἄγημα
or βασιλικὴ ἴλη.
Further divisions of the
and perhaps σκηναί,
the latter consisting of ten men (Anaximenes ap.
Harpocr. s. v. πεζέταιροι
4.21, 10). If Anaximenes in this passage refers
the establishment of the πεζέταιροι
to Alexander, this does not
refer, as is thought, to Alexander son of Amyntas, but is probably only
due to the practice of ascribing all innovations to and beginning all
things from the great Alexander, though Abel (Makedonien vor
p. 131, note 1) supposes him to
refer to the enrolment of Persians in the army by Alexander the Great.
The infantry was arranged in a phalanx (Diod.
). Their armour consisted of a helmet, metal-plated leather
jerkin, greaves, and small circular shield, about two feet in diameter
5), fastened on the arm, not grasped by
the hand: for both hands had to be used to hold the sarisa [SARISA], twelve cubits long (Theophr.
3.12, 2). They had also a short sword used
for thrusting; and accordingly the long sword of the Roman horsemen
caused the greater terror (Liv. 31.34
). Over the armour they wore a cloak except in
battle (Polyaen. 4.3
). Their arrangement was that of a serried
mass, a feature due to the influence of Epaminondas; for it was
doubtless with a view of facing his method of warfare that Philip first
organised the phalanx. Like the Greek hoplites, the phalanx was arranged
(cf. p. 770b
armour of the cavalry did not at all differ from the armour of the
ordinary heavy-armed horsemen in the Grecian armies. The lance we was
made of cornel-wood (Arr.
1.15, 5). The riders had no
stirrups or saddles (cf. Hermann-Droysen, op.
109). A very large portion besides of Philip's army consisted
of light-armed troops and mercenaries (Dem. Phil.
3.123.49). Philip was most particular about drill (Polyaen. 4.2
); he made the soldiers carry their own provisions, thus
getting rid of a great number of waggons; and he allowed no more than
one servant for each horse-soldier and one for each ten foot-soldiers to
carry such articles as the hand-mills, &c. (Frontin. 4.1, 6). He
supplied the arms to the soldiers (Diod.
; Liv. 42.52
), arranged the
different corps and appointed all their commanders himself (cf. Arr.
3.5, 5). His especial body-guard
were called σωματοφύλακες,
composed of his closest friends (Diod.
; cf. Arr. An.
6.28, 4). A
further body closely connected with the king were the Royal Pages
), sons of the
most distinguished Macedonians, who received a military training at the
court. On the cavalry Philip bestowed great care: with the united
Thessalians he had 3,000 in his war against the Phocians (Diod. 16.35
). He took the greatest care in
improving the breed of horses (Just. 9.2
). Even the foot-soldiers were trained
to fight on horseback (cf. Arr. An.
2); and a peculiar wedge-shaped arrangement of cavalry (ἐμβολοειδὴς τάξις
) is attributed to Philip
16.6). For the Macedonian ἐξελιγμός,
see p. 771 a.
Philip, too, made the greatest improvement in [p. 1.778]
military engines [TORMENTA], such as catapults and besieging-towers: from the
sieges of Perinthus and Byzantium a new era dates in the art of
besieging towns (Athen. de Mech.
p. 10; Grote, 11.262);
though we must remember that Dionysius of Syracuse had considerable
artillery before Philip's time (Diod.
One of the chief introductions of Alexander was that of the ὑπασπισταί.
They held an intermediate
position between the heavy-armed Foot-Companions and the quite
light-armed. They carried a round shield, a short thrustinglance, and
were clad with a chiton [CHITON
], and wore on their head a causia [CAUSIA
]. Some time during the campaigns of
Alexander, probably after the battle of Arbela, the ὑπασπισταὶ
were divided into chiliarchies
(cf. Arr. An.
3.29, 7), according to
Persian custom (cf. Xen. Cyr.
, 4; Diod. 18.48
also divided the cavalry, no longer into ἴλαι
in the first instance, but into ἱππαρχίαι
(at first eight, later four, in addition to
), which were then divided
each probably into two ἴλαι
6.27, 6): a previous alteration tending
towards this arrangement being the dividing of the ἴλη
into two λόχοι,
this latter title not having been applied to a division of cavalry
previously (Arr. An.
3.16, 3). Prior to the
appointment of these ἱππαρχίαι,
commander of the cavalry was called
(ib. 3.27, 4). Besides
the heavy cavalry, Alexander also introduced a lighter kind of cavalry,
called Sarisophori, used, as Grote (11.389) says, like Cossacks for
advanced posts or scouring the country. Their sarisa was shorter than
that of the phalangites, but much longer than the ξυστὸν
of the Companions. The Paeonian cavalry were
something similar. We hear of a body of reconnoitring πρόδρομοι
(i. e. Paeonians) and Sarisophori
in the march to the Granicus (Arr. An.
1.12, 7). The Greeks seem to have used but little such reconnoitring
parties. The phalanx of Alexander was much less rigid than is usually
supposed: according to circumstances, it could be divided into various
independently acting corps. We find the infantry sometimes running to
the attack (Arr. An.
1.26, 3),: and a
glance at the plan of the battle of Arbela in either Rustow and
Köchly's Griechisches Kriegswesen,
or in Bauer,
Taf. xi., will show the phalanx
broken up. However, the normal condition of the phalanx was in close
array (πύκνωσις κατ᾽ ἐπιστάτην καὶ
Pol. 18.30). The breaking--up into separate
divisions is mentioned as an exception; it appears to have been often
done to allow the chariots of the enemy to rush through (Arr. An.
1.1, 8; 3.13, 6). The phalanx was usually
eight deep, though at the Granicus Alexander made it sixteen (Arr.
1.13, 1). The front of the
was greater than the
depth, because λόχοι ὄρθιοι
mentioned as quite unusual (ib. 4.25, 2). When standing in close array,
each phalangite stood three feet from the soldier at his side and two
feet from the soldier behind him. Given the sarisa to be even eighteen
feet long, and six of these to be used in grasping and balancing it
), the sarisa of the fifth
rank would project two feet beyond the first rank. [It is very
questionable, however, whether Polybius is in error in this passage in
using the word πήχεις
all through, as
Rüstow and Köchly (op. cit.
239), followed by Droysen (op. cit.
Hultsch, in his edition of Polybius, adheres to πήχεις,
and see Grote, chap. xcii. Appendix, and 11.384.
That the longest sarisa was eighteen feet in Alexander's time, and was
lengthened afterwards to twenty-one feet, twenty-four feet being the
ideal length aimed at, seems the most satisfactory way to explain the
various passages.] The other ranks held the sarisa slanting upwards to
ward off missiles, but took no other part in the fight except so far as
their pressure urged the front ranks forward. On the march the
phalangites carried their sarisas on their shoulders ; and bringing them
down into position for action was called καταβάλλειν τὰς σαρίσας
(Pol. 18.24, 9; Weiss. on
). The first man of each file (στίχος
) was the λοχαγός,
soldier of tried bravery and great strength. This method of fighting in
phalanx, which was characteristic of the Hellenistic empires down to the
end of their existences, is severely criticised by Polybius in various
passages, chiefly on the score of its incapability of manoeuvring
easily--a disadvantage attaching more to the phalanx of the successors
of Alexander than to that of Alexander himself. The phalanx, we are
told, required even ground (Pol. 18.31; Liv.
), was powerless against an
attack from flank or rear (Pol. 18.26, 4; Liv.
), and in attempting to
wheel round was generally thrown into confusion (Liv. 32.18. 16
). All this is no doubt true; and the truth
was all the more apparent when the phalanx had to face the Roman
manipular tactics (Pol. 18.29, 30): besides, the phalanx of the
successors of Alexander was used generally in the offensive. But we must
remember that the phalanx was quite invincible as long as it remained
together, and its attack in front irresistible (Pol. l.c.
), and that it was not subject to any inconveniences
greater than those experienced by the ordinary Greek hoplite army (cf.
Grote, 11.385). The strength of the phalanx, according to the
tacticians, was 16,384 men--16 men to one Lochus, 16 Lochi to one
Syntagma, 2 Syntagmata to one Pentacosiarchy, 2 Pentacosiarchies to 1
Chiliarchy, 16 Chiliarchies to the phalanx (cf. Grote, 11.386). But this
is merely theoretical. The actual numbers of the phalanx varied. It was
10,000 at Sellasia, 16,000 at Cynoscephalae, and 20,000 at Pydna
(Droysen, pp. 158, 172). The phalanx of Antiochus at Magnesia consisted
of 16,000 men, and was formed in 10 divisions (μέρη
) of 1600 men each, arranged 50 broad and 32 deep
(App. Syr. 32
; Liv. 37.40
We cannot be very certain about the strength of Alexander's army at
different times; but even at the outset the Macedonians were distinctly
in the minority--12,000 out of 30,000 infantry, 1500 out of 4,500
cavalry (see Grote, 11.397). The Grecian allied forces stood under
Macedonian commanders: the infantry is rarely mentioned, but we hear of
the cavalry of the Thessalians and an ἴλη
from Orchomenus in Boeotia. It is noticeable that
mercenary cavalry appear in Egypt (Arr. An.
3.5, 1). We do not hear much of the light-armed troops in Alexander's
army. The Agrianes, a people from [p. 1.779]
Macedonia, were valuable archers. There were, of course, slingers and
javelin-throwers, later all kinds of native Asiatic troops, amongst them
3.24, 11; 4.24, 1). The introduction of these native
troops after the conquest of the Persian empire led to changes in the
army. The phalanx was now made 16 deep; the first three ranks being
Macedonians, armed in Macedonian fashion with the sarisa, as was also
the last, but the twelve intermediate ranks were Persians, armed with
bows and javelins (Arr. An.
7.23, 3; cf.
Grote, 12.73). This phalanx, says Bauer (op.
315), is the first examaple of the union of differently-armed
troops, light and heavy, into one tactical body. Droysen (Gesch.
ii.2 232) thinks it was intended
to be used against the Italians. The Macedonian cavalry was posted on
the wings, and was generally used to bear the chief part in the battle
after it had been opened by the light troops, the heavy infantry being
seldom required in Alexander's battles. Alexander himself usually headed
the cavalry on the right wing. It was arranged in ἴλαι,
separated by intervals (Arr. An.
5.15, 2), which advanced to the attack one a little
in advance of the other, so that on a plan the different ἴλαι
would look like a flight of steps.
(This is probably the meaning of ἐξελιγμὸς τῶν
in Arr. An.
It was quite exceptional if the cavalry were placed in a solid mass (ib.
5.17, 4). The extreme wings were generally formed by the Agrianes and
other bowmen: next to the cavalry on the right wing, adjoining the heavy
infantry, were the Hypaspistae (see Bauer, op.
p. 316). At Arbela Alexander made use of a considerable
reserve (Arr. An.
3.12, 1). The excellence
of his cavalry brought about an important alteration in the conclusion
of battles; for he used to pursue the beaten enemy (cf. Arr. An.
3.15, 5), a practice not at all usual in
Grecian warfare. Another feature in which the excellently-drilled
Macedonian army differed from the Grecian was in being able to form in
battle array a long distance from the enemy (7 miles at Arbela, Arr.
3.9, 3). The use of field artillery
is a striking feature of Alexander's tactics. He used it specially to
protect the army in crossing a river (Arr. An.
1.6, 8), but also in other cases (Arr. An.
4.29, 7). Heavy artillery was of course used in
sieges. All the engines were administered by μηχανοποιοί
2). Alexander did not use elephants; though he appears to have intended
to do so, as he had 200 brought from India (Arr. An.
6.2, 2). There was a very large mass of camp-followers in
the army of Alexander, women and children being in it (Arr. An.
6.25, 5), besides the number of soldiers
servants, merchants, and drivers of the waggons, which carried the
tents, engines, and other baggage. The Macedonians do not appear to have
fortified their camp; but each division of troops had definite positions
in the encampment. We hear of Thracians used as pioneers (Arr. An.
1.26, 1). We know little about the way the
commissariat was administered: and as regards pay, all we know is that
the phalangite, who held a position midway between the common soldier
and those who were said to get double pay (διμοιρῖται,
got 10 staters a month (Arr. An.
The wars of the Hellenistic period show in many respects a continuation
of the later system of Alexander. The armies become much larger, and as
a necessary consequence the material much worse, and a still larger
proportion than before were mercenaries. Demetrius is said to have had
an army of 110,000 men taken from every kind of class and nation (Plut. Dem. 43
). In Hermann-Droysen (op. cit.
p. 133 ff.) there are extensive
statistics of the strength of the armies of this period. But many of the
features of the army of Alexander continue. The large introduction of
native troops beside a few Macedonians, the use of cavalry for the first
attack, the position of the cavalry and light-armed on the wings, and
the phalanx of heavy infantry in the centre, the carrying on of
campaigns during the whole year and the extensive use and improvement of
artillery, are features we still find exhibited. Also special corps
retain their names, such as the παῖδες
(Pol. 5.82; Liv. 45.6
(Pol. 5.25), ἴλη βασιλική
(Pol. 5.84), ἕταιροι
for the cavalry (Pol. 5.53). But,
on the other hand, there are differences. The phalanx comes to be used
in the attack, no longer in the defence, and it becomes far more rigid
and immovable than it was with Alexander. The sarisa was lengthened to
21 feet. Philopoemen (Pol. 11.11.6) alone appears to have broken up the
phalanx into smaller divisions. Pyrrhus (Pol. 18.28) placed Italians and
phalangites alternately (ἐναλλάξ
apparently without the whole mass being appreciably less serried. This
rigid kind of phalanx remained the cardinal feature of the Hellenistic
armies of the time: the best soldiers for it were considered to be the
Macedonians and Achaeans (Pol. 4.8); on the wings were generally placed
special forces (ἐπιτάγματα
) to prevent
flank attacks (Pol. 5.53). The various Grecian states who aspired to any
distinction in war had to adopt it--Aetolians (Liv.
), Achaeans and Megalopolitans (Pol. 2.65; Plut. Phil. 8
), Spartans (Plut.
11). The smallest division of the Hellenistic
phalanx was the σημαία,
appears in Egyptian papyri for bodies of fourteen men (Bauer, op. cit.
p. 320). The σπεῖρα,
which is the general term Polybius gives to the
Roman cohort, was a larger division. There were no standards. Livy
wrongly applies to the Macedonians Roman customs. The purple cloth
) raised on a sarisa in
Pol. 2.66.11, was only for a signal. Alexander had after the Indian
expedition assigned to certain veterans of the Foot-Companions the
privilege of carrying silver shields, and these veterans were called
are mentioned subsequently in the wars of Eumenes and Antigonus (Diod. 18.58
), and in the Syrian kingdom (Pol.
5.79, 4). We also hear of phalangites who carried white shields
23) and brazen shields (χαλκάσπιδες,
Pol. 2.66). This looks like the
introduction of a kind of uniform (cf. the στρατιωτικαὶ χλαμύδες
and φοινικοῖ ὑροδύται
: cf. Plut. Aemil.
18; Pol. 31.3). The
breastplate of the phalangites appears to have been of great weight and
power of resistance (Plut. Demetr.
). The term ὑπασπισταὶ
appears to be now used no longer for the troops [p. 1.780]
midway between the heavy and light style of armour, but for the
body-guard (Diod. 18.45
; Pol. 5.27; Liv. 42.51
), as indeed it was occasionally in
Alexander's time (Arr. An.
3.8, 3). The 300
with Eumenes were the remains of Alexander's corps (Diod. 19.28
). We also hear of a special
body-guard called Nicatores
; Hesych. sub voce
In the Hellenistic armies the light-armed and cavalry stood on the wings.
Peltasts are found in the Greek armies, and the Greek mercenaries were
mostly armed in this style. They are regularly distinguished from the
archers, slingers, javelin-throwers, &c. (Pol. 8.15.6). They
were divided into σπεῖραι
(Pol. 5.4). These only very rarely
acted in serried ranks: they generally fought in a scattered manner in
small detachments (Liv. 35.29
). The best
archers were Cretans, who were excellent too at ambushes, raids, and
such like irregular warfare (Pol. 4.8, 68), or Agrianes (Pol. 2.65, 79):
the best slingers were Achaeans (Pol. 4.61); yet it is noticeable that
in the armies of the Achaean league no Achaean slingers appear
(Hermann-Droysen, 170, note 3). The cavalry was largely supplied by the
Thessalians (Liv. 33.4
; Pol. 18.22). It was
armed with the heavy breastplate and thrusting-pike (ξυστόν
), and carried a wooden shield covered
with brass (Pol. 6.25). The Thessalian cavalry was unconquerable when
fighting in line and phalanx, but difficult to be used for single combat
out of line; the case being just the reverse with the Aetolian cavalry
(Pol. 4.8, 18.22). The Aetolian cavalry was divided into οὐλαμοί
(which was the smallest division,
Pol. 18.19), ἴλαι,
Cavalry was usually posted eight
deep, with intervals between the individual ἴλαι
(Pol. 12.18). The statement that in the battle of
Gabiene the two ἴλαι
were posted fifty
deep (Diod. 19.27
) is hardly to be
believed; rather they were fifty strong (Rustow and Köchly, op. cit.
370, note 16). Special kinds of cavalry
also used were : (1) the Median
cavalry, with long lances
), probably like the Sarisophori
of Alexander; (2) Tarentini,
cavalry, using javelins and each having two horses (Pol. 4.77, 11.12,
16.18; Ael. Tact.
: cf. Pollux, 1.131, ἅμιπποι
), such being originally mercenaries from Tarentum;
(Pol. 31.3; Liv. 37.40
]. We occasionally hear of ἱπποτοξόται
) and scythed chariots (Plut. Demetr. 28
; Liv. 37.40
But the most special feature of the Hellenistic armies, especially that
of the Seleucids, is the use of elephants. Alexander had no doubt
intended to use them, but never did. Seleucus got no fewer than 500 from
Sandracottus (Strab. p. 724). The elephants were generally placed before
the line in the centre, though sometimes on the flanks, ἐν ἐπικαμπίῳ
), i. e. at an angle
with the main line, stretching forward or backward according as they
were to be used for attack or defence. Sometimes we find them in a
square (Diod. 19.39
). Between the elephants
were numerous light-armed, and both used generally to open the battle.
Pyrrhus, however, was accustomed to keep them for the final effort--they
were the ultima ratio regis.
were mostly Indian ones, and were driven by men called Indians (Diod. 19.84
), except in Egypt, where the African elephant was used
(Pol. 5.79, 82). The latter was much inferior to the Indian elephant
(ib. 84). In the wooden tower (θωράκιον
) on each beast there were, besides the driver,
three or four combatants armed with sarisas or bows (Pol. 5.84; Liv. 37.40
; Strab. p. 709). Sometimes there
were coats of mail put on the animals (Liv. l.c.
), and on their backs were purple trappings (Plut. Eum. 14
), in front plumes and
frontlets (Liv. l.c.
). There were special
commanders for the corps of elephants (Plut.
; App. Syr. 33
elephant generally used to lead the way (προηγούμενος,
). When the elephants violently
assailed the enemy with tusks and trunk, they were very formidable (Pol.
5.84); but if they did not strike terror at once into their opponents,
their influence was frustrated with comparative ease: simple devices,
like chains or boards with nails, sufficed to stop their advance (Diod. 18.71
The miscellaneous character of the Hellenistic armies can be very well
seen by an examination of the lists of the armies of Eumenes and
Antigonus at the battle of Paraetakene (317 B.C.) and of Demetrius at
Gaza in 312 B.C. (Diod. 19.27
and 82). Mercenaries were very cheap
). Antigonus promises
each Celt no more than a χρυσοῦς
i. e. a stater (Polyaen.
). The frequent use of
Celts is very noticeable (Pol. 2.65, 5.53): their characteristic is
carrying the great oblong shield (θυρεός
), which is so often portrayed by the Pergamene
artists. Owing to the long marches, considerable care was bestowed on
the commissariat, as is evidenced by the preparations of Antigonus in
his Egyptian expeditions (Diod. 19.58
): for it is to be noticed that
ambuscades, forced marches,
surprises, and such κλοπαὶ τοῦ
are more frequent in this period than previously,
and these required waiting for opportunities (cf. Rustow and
Köchly, op. cit.
358 ff.). There was a
still larger and more indiscriminate camp-following than in Alexander's
time, wives and children of the soldiers being found there in great
numbers (Diod. 19.43
16). The army, says Diodorus (20.41
), was actually like a colony. Owing to
its size, different divisions had sometimes to take up winter-quarters
six days' journey from one another (Diod.
). Great arsenals and military centres were established in
the different kingdoms, e. g. at Alexandria and Apamea (Strab. p. 752),
where the soldiers were drilled during the winter (Pol. 5.66, cf. 63).
Field-artillery was occasionally used (Pol. 11.11, 12). For the camp,
which was protected by a rampart and a ditch (Diod. 19.39
), but by a very indifferent palisade (Pol. 6.42,
18.18), see CASTRA
generals and distinguished officers in close attendance on the monarch
wore purple mantles (Pol. 11.18); hence are called purpurati
by Livy (31.35
The bestowing of a purple mantle and a causia was considered a mark of
distinction (Plut. Eum. 8
). The officers
sometimes fought with sarisas, and had, like the phalangites, small
shields (Diod. 18.34
), but usually they
fought with a ξυστὸν
on horseback. In
Macedonia there were not nearly so many mercenaries [p. 1.781]
as in the other Hellenistic armies; moreover, the armies in
that kingdom used generally to be disbanded in winter (Pol. 2.54.14;
4.67.3). In Egypt the Ptolemies enrolled a great number of native
Egyptians (Pol. 5.65); but apparently only in consequence of a
revolution by the Egyptians (Mahaffy, Greek Life and
p. 486): as reserves they had the colonists (κάτοικοι
) settled in the military colonies
) throughout the country.
These colonists were of the most varied nationalities--Greeks,
Macedonians, Thracians, Celts, Jews, Cretans. They and their sons
) were divided into
and in time of war could
be called out for service as infantry or cavalry, but in time of peace
they might engage in any business like ordinary civilians. (For full
details on these κάτοικοι
in Egypt, see
Lumbroso, L‘économie politique de
p. 224 ff.; and
Hermann-Droysen, op. cit.
163.) In Greece at
this period, with the exception of the efforts of Philopoemen in the
Achaean league and Cleomenes at Sparta, military affairs were in a
deplorable state of inefficiency. Mere raids seem to have been most that
were attempted; we come across such phrases now as τὸ λάφυρον ἐπικηρύττειν.
(The chief work on the Grecian military systems is that of Rustow and
Köchly, Geschichte des griechischen
1852. This is the main foundation of all
subsequent treatises, the best of which are Die griechischen
by Adolf Bauer, in Iwan
Müller's Handbuch der klassischen
1887, 4.226-231, where the vast
bibliography on the subject is to be found; and H. Droysen's edition of
Die griechischen Kriegsalterthümer,
ii. of K. F. Hermann's Lehrbuch der griechischen
1888. Much information is also to be
got from Gilbert, Handbuch der griechischen
1881, and H. Droysen,
Untersuchungen über Alexander des Grossens Heerwesen
(down to Septimius Severus). The most generally adopted periods in the
development of the army during the Republic is into the citizen army
of the first six centuries, and
what is called the mercenary army
of the last
century dating from Marius. The latter formed a transition to the standing army
of the Empire. Adopting this
division, we shall say something about the legionary and auxiliary force
of each period.
I. From Romulus to Marius: the Citizen Army.
1. The early Kings.
Under the early kings the legion
“gathering” (from legere,
Varro, L. L.
Greek generally στρατόπεδον,
often τάγμα, τέλος, στράτευμα
(D. C. 38.47
(ib. 79.7)--appears to have
consisted of three “thousands” (milites
) commanded by three tribuni militum
and three hundred horse (celeres
) commanded by three tribuni celerum.
Tradition says (Varro,
5.89, 91) that the Ramnes, Titles, and
Luceres each contributed a third to the legion of Romulus,
though the Luceres were not in existence at that time. The
were so called because
they presided over a third part of the whole force (Serv. on
5.560). Besides these regular troops,
the old terms velites
point to a subsidiary force of
light-armed, especially archers (Mommsen, R. H.
1.79, Eng. trans.). The patricians were the heavy-armed and
their clients the light-armed. The method of fighting, if we may
judge from the early stories of Livy (e. g. 1.10, 2.6), appears
to have been single combats of horsemen in Homeric style. Each
warrior, we are told (Festus, s. v. paribus
p. 121 M.), brought two horses into battle.
Instances of single combat appear long after the Republic was
established: e. g. Cossus (Liv.
), Q. Fabius (5.36), Corvinus (7.26), Asellus (23.46,
12), Scipio Aemilianus (V. Max.
), but it was no
longer more than an exceptional incident of the battle. Still
for a long period the cavalry formed among the Romans a highly
important department of the army, used either to charge the
enemy at the outset and throw them into disorder, which was
completed by the advance of the infantry (Liv. 1.30
to act as a reserve in order to charge at the critical moment
). A still greater superiority in cavalry lasted among
the other Italians till much more recent periods. In the Second
Punic War it was the most important part of the Capuan army
), and the Romans during the
flourishing period of the Republic always got the main portion
of their cavalry from the Italian allies.
2. Servius Tullius.
During the monarchy of Servius Tullius we must suppose the
increased army due to the increased population. Under him we
find four legions, two of juniores
17 to 46 years (Mommsen, Staatsrecht,
i.2 487) and two of seniores
from 47 to 60, with 1800 cavalry. Later
the calling out of the seniores
only took place in great emergencies (Liv.
; cf. 6.6, 14).
The infantry now became the chief department of the army, and
was arranged in a phalanx like the Doric one, except that the
soldiers had missile weapons borrowed from the Etruscans or
Samnites (Sal. Cat. 51
), especially the hasta,
called in Sabellian language
). It is probable too that the
Romans also got from the Etruscans the clipeus,
and from the Samnites the scutum,
though Mommsen (R.
1.456, note) in the face of tradition (Diod.
; Festus, s. v. Samnites,
p. 327 M.), thinks the clipeus
derived from the Greeks. The men were taken from those who had a
stake in the country, the ASSIDUI
who were formed into five classes, paid
tribute, and served at their own expense (Festus, s. v. assiduus,
p. 9 M.); while the proletarii,
who were outside the
classes, were only called out in cases of emergency, and were
equipped by the state (Gel. 16.10
). The phalanx consisted of
six rows of 500 men each and 1200 light-armed. Scholars
interpret the accounts of the phalanx as given by Livy (1.43
) and Dionysius (4.16
) differently. Marquardt
326) supposes the first two ranks only to have been of the first
class and to have had the full armour, viz. helmet [CASSIS, GALEA], breastplate [LORICA
], round iron
greaves [OCREAE]; the third and fourth
ranks to have been of the second class, and to have had an
inferior suit of armour, viz. breastplate, greaves, oblong
leather shield [SCUTUM
]; and the fifth and sixth ranks to have been of
the third class, and to have had only breastplate and scutum.
Mommsen, on the other hand
p. 138; R. H.
holds that the first four ranks were taken from the first class,
and had the full armour; the fifth from the second class, with
the inferior armour; and the sixth from the third class, wearing
the third class kind of armour. The fourth and fifth classes,
who either formed the rear of the phalanx or more likely fought
alongside it, contributed the light-armed or rorarii,
so called because they opened the battle
with a “shower” of missiles ( “Tractum quod
ante maximas pluvias caelum rorare incipiat,” Non.
552, 31), and then retired behind the phalanx (cf. Lucil. x.,
“Pone paludatus stabat rorarius velox” ). But
Dionysius says the fourth class formed the seventh row of the
phalanx, and carried a scutum,
sword, and spear; and in this he is followed by Huschke
425),> while Livy
declares that they had “nihil praeter hastam et
verutum,” i. e. fought sometimes in the phalanx with the
sometimes as light-armed
with the verutum.
The fifth class,
according to Dionysius, was outside the phalanx, but had spears
) and slings; Livy says
they had only slings and stones. The ferentarii,
who fought with missiles (
“quae ferrentur non quae tenerentur” ), were
the same as the rorarii
Non. 520, 12 M.; Festus, p. 369 M.). It is to be carefully
remembered that there were twenty centuries of the first class;
five of the second, third, and fourth; and seven of the fifth
class in each legion. Besides, there were two centuries of
artisans (fabri, aerarii et tignarii
look after the engines, two of trumpeters (cornicines, liticines
), and one of accensi velati
(unarmed supernumeraries), who
were most likely brought to fill up the places of those who fell
(Festus, p. 369), and it is barely possible that they may have
acted as a sort of pioneers to clear the roads in advance: for
in imperial times a body with this name was a college (Orelli,
2182; C. I. L.
6.1607), and had something to say
to road-making (Orelli, 111; and Mommsen in Annali dell'
1849, pp. 209 ff.).
(from the point of view of the levy)
(from the point of view
of the census) when used alone appear to be generic terms,
embracing all those not in the phalanx (Festus, s. v. ad scriptitti,
p. 14 L.), though Livy
and Plautus (ap. Varro, L. L.
rorarii estis? En sunt. Ubi accensi? Ecce” )
distinguish them. Lange (Röm. Alt.
i.3 535) supposes that the rorarii
were the fifth class, and the accensi
Subjoined is a table taken from
Mommsen (Die römischen Tribus,
which shows the theoretic arrangement, and how the numbers were
derived from the four local tribes. We say
“theoretic” because, for example, one can hardly
suppose that the seniores
been as numerous as the juniores.
cannot be a shadow of doubt but that the arrangement was
previously a military one (Lange, R. A.
i.3 456, 464, 522, &c.); for if it
were not so, why should a man of sixty years of age be excluded
from the centuries (Mommsen, R. H.
|Order of Voting.
||Legio I. Junior.
||Legio II. Juniorum.
||Legio I. Seniorum.
||Legio II. Seniorum.
||Order of Battle.
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
|II. Centuriae fabrum.
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
||100 [multi] 5
|II. Centuriae litic. cornic.
||100 [multi] 7
||100 [multi] 7
||100 [multi] 7
||100 [multi] 7
|I. Cent. accens. velat.
|Total of Legion.
||100 [multi] 42
||100 [multi] 42
||100 [multi] 42
||100 [multi] 42
The cavalry was increased by twelve new centuries by Servius
Tullius; and though they still were personally the principal
classes in the army, yet in a military point of view they lost
their pre-eminence, being now placed on the wings of the
phalanx, and in a social point of view they lost their
exclusively patrician character. The knights are now the richest
of the citizens (Cic.
, 39), those whose property
surpassed that required for the first class, and there was
perhaps a fixed sum necessary to enable one to become a knight,
as we hear of a census equester
B.C. (Liv. 5.7
). They no longer had two horses for themselves, but
one for themselves and the other for their attendant; and for
procuring and keeping these horses they got from the treasury an
and aes hordearium,
the latter a sum defrayed [p. 1.783]
by a tax on widows and orphans
(Marquardt, op. cit.
ii.2 172). At a triumph they got a threefold share of the
booty (Liv. 45.43
), when planted in a colony a share of
land larger than the others (Liv.
), and threefold
pay when pay was introduced (Plb.
). The number of
active knights who received the aes
remained 1800; but those who acquired the property
necessary to become knights, without obtaining the equus publicus
(i.e. getting the aes equestre
), increased greatly, and
they were the origin of the ordo
; Lange, R. A.
ii.2 20 ff.). [EQUITES
] Thus we hear that at the siege
of Veii there were many who served without having an equus publicus
); a passage, by the
way, which shows that those who did not get the aes equestre
probably were not required
to serve in the infantry.
Important changes were introduced into the army by Camillus: (1)
payment of the soldiers from the time of the siege of Veii (406
B.C.), in consequence of the necessary continuance of war
operations, from summer into winter; (2) certain alterations of
arms, plating of helmets and shields with brass, and teaching
the soldiers to use long pila
ward off the stroke of the Gallic sword (Plut.
40); (3) probable beginning of the
breaking up of the phalanx into maniples. This breaking up was
most likely introduced in order to resist the first and most
dangerous charge of the Celtic sword-phalanx, and was further
developed in the Samnite wars, reaching its full perfection in
the war with Pyrrhus. The result of the breaking up of the
phalanx was that the system of census divisions in the army
disappeared, and the arrangement was made to depend on the age
and experience of the soldiers: the soldier now advanced from
(see below). This was quite necessary, as a
better military training was required for steadfastness and
efficiency in the small manipular unit than in the solid
phalanx, where the inexperienced could not leave their place so
easily (Mommsen, R. H.
But we do not know all the steps in the development of the army
to the arrangements it exhibits in the most flourishing period
of the Republic, viz. the 6th century of the city. From Camillus
to Polybius is over two hundred years, and many changes were
effected in that time which we can only guess at. As to the
manipular arrangement described by Livy (8.8
) in his account of the Latin war of 340 B.C., which he appears to have taken
without understanding it from some older authority, it is all
too confused and uncertain to allow any definite result to be
obtained from it (see Weissenborn ad
and Madvig, Verfassung,
For the immense literature which has gathered round the passage,
but reached no definite explanations, see Marquardt, op. cit.
note 1. Passing by this perplexing description, let us proceed
to sketch the state of the army as described by Polybius.
A certain property
was still required for
service in the army, but it was now only 4,000 asses instead of
the 11,000 of Servius Tullius (Plb.
). The normal number
of men in the legion continued as
in the time of Servius Tullius, viz. 4,200, roughly 4,000,
infantry (cf. for 494 B.C. Dionys.
A. R. 6.42
; for 381, Liv.
; for 349, Liv. 7.25
for 225, Plb. 2.24
; for 146, Plb.
). In especial cases
the numbers were 5,200 or 5,000 (Plb.
). It was first in the war
against Perseus that the legion was raised to 6,000 (Liv. 42.31
), and the regular number from Marius's time was 6,200
(Festus, s.v. sex millium,
p. 336 M.), a
number which appears occasionally earlier (Liv. 29.24
The old quota of cavalry for the legion was 200 (Pol. 3.107, 10;
), but the usual one for the legion, whether of
4,200, 5,000, 5,200, 6,000, or 6,200, was 300 (see Polyb. and
Liv. ll. cc.
Taking then the normal legionary force at 4,200 infantry, it was
divided in Polybius's time (6.21, 7-9; cf. Gel. 16.4
) into 1200
--these three classes arranged behind one
another in the form of a quincunx, and 1200 velites (γροσφόμαχοι
). The latter are the
“youngest and poorest,” the hastati
“those next them” (i. e. in these two
respects), the principes “the most vigorous in
years” (τοὺς ἀκμαιοτάτους ταῖς
), and the triarii “the
oldest” (cf. Liv. 8.8
). All three classes were armed with a
metal helmet [CASSIS
], having a red or black plume 1 1/2 feet high
(Pol. 6.23, 12), but no visor, a leathern shield [SCUTUM
], greaves [OCREAE], a leathern breastplate [LORICA
], a short
Spanish two-edged sword [GLADIUS
], which was worn at the right side while they
carried a dagger at the left. The spear of the hastati and
principes was the light pilum
], used for
throwing, while the triarii carried the hasta
for thrusting [HASTA
]. Besides this armour, the soldier
of course had such articles of attire as the sagum
The hastati, principes, and triarii were broken up into thirty
), each “bundle” forming the
smallest tactical unit which was under one standard (Varro,
5.88; cf. Tac.
, “discedere in manipulos” ).
derived its name, if
not as indicated from itself being a bundle of men (cf. Madvig,
ii. p. 486, note), from the
bundle or handful of hay (Plut. Rom.
; Ov. Fast. 3.115
fixed on a pole which served as the standard. Later signum
was the term for the standard of
the maniples (Liv. 27.14
), and Polybius very frequently uses
for the maniple
(though the usual word is σπεῖρα,
sometimes being found). Occasionally the
maniple had more than one signum
(Pol. 6.24, 6). The maniple continued as a recognised division
of the army even after the introduction of the arrangement by
cohorts (Caes. B.C.
2.28, 1; Tac. Ann. 1.34
) down to very late
times (Amm. Marc. 21.13, 9
), though we sometimes find it used
in a vague sense for any detachment (Tac. Ann. 14.58
). The maniple was further divided into two centuries,
each commanded by a centurion, the centurion which commanded the
right century being elected before him who commanded the left
then formed 10 manipuli
of 120 men each or 20 centuries
of 60 men each. So did the principes.
who were always 600, and never varied with the varying numbers
of the legion (Pol. 6.21, 10),
formed 10 maniples of 60 men each or 20 centuries of 30 men. To
each century 20 velites
(ib. 24, 4). The maniple of the first two ranks with its velites
was usually arranged with 20 men in front and 8 in depth,
according to Nast (Röm.
p. 51) and Marquardt
on the not very strong grounds that such was the usual depth
among the Greeks and among the Romans in the time of Trajan.
Mommsen (R. H.
1.453) appears to think that the
depth was not more than four files, the maniples of the three
ranks having a front accordingly of 40, 40, and 20 men; and this
seems the preferable view, as the main aim of the manipular
arrangement was to encourage the individual mode of fighting.
This latter was the cause of the considerable space, it may have
been 6 feet, which was allowed in what was called loose array
each soldier and his fellow-soldier beside or behind him; in
close array (confertis ordinibus
the space was only 3 feet (cf. Pol. 18.13, 6; Liv. 22.47
; Caes. Gal. 2.25
; Veg. 3.14, though it must
be confessed these passages only make for and are not quite
conclusive as to such an accurate distinction). The general form
of opening the battle was for the hastati
to hurl their pila
at a distance of about 10 or 20 paces from the
enemy, and then proceed to the attack with the sword, where
single combats prevailed. If this did not finish the battle, the
always acted as a
reserve, sometimes at the camp (Liv.
), as was their
duty originally (Dionys. A. R.
further details, see the account of the Battle Array below, p.
The great advantages of this divided light manipular arrangement
as against the serried unwieldy phalanx, are that the former was
ready for any emergency, that it was not disarranged by uneven
ground, that a small disorder did not break up the whole array
as in the phalanx, that the individual soldier was better able
to vary his method of fighting according as it is necessary that
the maniple, century or individual should engage ; and many more
which are set forth by Polybius, 18.31
1.455) notices how the Roman military
arrangements of this time attained the three great military
principles of keeping a reserve (the triarii
), of combining the distant and close methods
of fighting (in the discharge of pila
preparatory to the sword attack), and in
combining the offensive and defensive (the latter especially in
the formation of camps).
The 300 cavalry of the legion fell into 10 turmae
of 30 men. Each turma
by three decurions
) and three optiones
), and had a vexillum
(Veg. 2.14). The turma
stood in three rows, each row having a decurio
and an optio in the first and last place, the first elected
decurio leading the whole troop (Pol. 6.25, 1, 2). They charged
in close order (Sal. Jug. 101
), often taking the reins from
the horses (Liv. 8.30
) ; but in standing fight they
doubtless extended their ranks if they did not dismount and
fight on foot (Liv. 31.35
). Originally the cavalry had no
armour, only a tunic so as to enable them to leap on and from
their horses easily, ox-hide shields incapable of resisting
severe thrusts and easily damaged by wet, very light lances with
a point only at one end; but in the time of Polybius they had
adopted the Greek cavalry equipment, which consisted of
breastplate, covering for the loins, greaves, metal helmet,
round shield [PARMA
lance, and long sword, “which as soon as they saw they
adopted speedily; for the Romans are pre-eminently good at
adopting new practices and striving after
improvements” (Pol. 6.25, 3-11). Possibly, as among the
Greeks, the horses wore protections for the head, breast, and
sides (προμετωπίδια, προστερνίδια,
). Saddles appear to have been used
in Caesar's time (B. G.
4.2, 5), but they had no
stirrups, as may be seen from illustrations, and from the fact
that recruits were taught to vault into the saddle (Veg. 1.18).
During the Republic the Roman cavalry was always weak; and its
inferiority was so marked as against the fine Campanian cavalry
that, in order to be able to contend with it at all, the Romans
in 211 B.C. (Liv. 26.4
) selected from
the legions the most active youths, who carried each a parma
and seven iron-tipped javelins
), 4 feet long
each. These youths, whom Livy calls velites,
used to ride behind the horsemen, and
leaping down at a given signal hurl their darts in rapid
volleys. This practice of foot-soldiers fighting amongst the
cavalry existed also amongst the Germans (Caes. Gal. 1.48
; Tac. Germ.
and Caesar formed such a troop of Germans (B. G.
7.65, 4; 8.13, 2). This practice appears to have been afterwards
regarded as a regular specific for strengthening weak cavalry
(Veg. 3.16). Of course velites,
meaning light-armed, existed long before, as can be seen even in
); but it appears that from this time (viz. 211 B.C.)
disappear, and velites
is the name for the lightarmed
of the legion (Liv. 30.33
). They combined both distant and
close conflict (Liv. 31.35
), whereas the rorarii
only fought from a distance; and further
now formed an integral
part of the maniples or turmae,
whereas the rorarii
A word must be said in conclusion on the terms hastati, principes,
terms which were not clear (minus illustria
) in the manipular
arrangement, as Varro says (L. L.
front rank is called hastati,
their spear was the pilum.
it that the second
rank is called
first men” ? And the triarii,
who are also called pilani,
do not carry the pilum
at all, but a hasta
6.23, 16). We must take refuge in conjecture to explain these
difficulties. The terms probably came from the old phalanx, the
being the front rank (Festus, p. 249 M.),
means the front rank
often (Liv. 2.65
; Sall. Jug.
50, 2), and so being
members of the first class. The term hastati
was one applied to all the members of the
phalanx who were all armed with the hasta,
but it got narrowed down to a portion of what
it originally implied when the name of principes
was appropriated by the first class,
just as, for example, the term dies
became confined to a portion of the Dies Fasti
(see Lange, R. A.
532), or the term centuria
a century when the maniple was introduced. The triarii,
the third rank (we should more
naturally expect tertiarii
), [p. 1.785]
used originally, as we saw, to guard
the camp. Doubtless in this duty they used the long heavy
]; hence were called pilani
(Varro, L. L.
5.89), a name which was in a measure retained not only in the
titles of the centurions, but also in the term antepilani
as applied to the hastati
). Now, when the class-distinctions
began to be superseded and efficiency made the ground of the
arrangement in the legion, the chief and most able soldiers, who
socially too were the most important and who had been in the
front rank originally and as such still retained the name of
were not used for
the first assault, but kept in case the battle proved a serious
one; the inferior classes, the hastati,
being placed in front. The triarii
continued to be the reserve.
They had been probably the older men left to guard the camp; but
now that age meant generally experience, as being used for the
reserve these veterans formed the most efficient and tried
portion of the army.
II. From Marius to Augustus--the Mercenary Army.
The terrible defeat of the Romans at Arausio in 105 B.C. rendered it
necessary to make every effort possible to raise sufficient and
adequate forces to meet the Northern invaders. This serious pressure
hastened and consummated the introduction of changes in the army
which the altered political and social condition of the times
rendered inevitable sooner or later. The gradual shrinking of the
rich upper classes from service (Sal. Jug.
) and the disappearance of
the middle class left nothing open but the admission of all
free-born citizens to the legions; that is, if an adequate army was
to be raised. The census indeed in Polybius's time was only 4,000
asses (6.19, 2), but now nothing further was required but free
birth,--a recruit need possess nothing but his caput
This was the most vital change possible. Men with no stake in the
country and nothing to go home to after service, who looked on
service as a means for enriching themselves and not as a temporary
burden, were certain to become, as they did, faithful followers of
their leader if he led them to plunder (Sal.
) and to care
little about their country (Appian, App. BC
)--in fact, practically to become mercenaries. It is
not without reason, then, that Marquardt (Staatsv.
ii.2 321) calls the period from Marius to
Augustus the period of the Mercenary Army
). The essence of such an
army is the supremacy of the general and the equality of the
soldiers. All the traditional distinctions of velites, hastati, principes,
disappear; their definite and traditional
place in the order of battle, their military rank, armour,
standards, all were superseded; the recruits were now all on an
equality and uniformly trained, a new and severe method of drill and
training like that of gladiators having been devised by P. Rutilius
Rufus, consul in 105 B.C. (V. Max. 2.3
). In place of the manipular
division, the last mention of which is its use in the Jugurthine War
by Metellus (Sal. Jug. 49
), the unit now becomes that of the cohort,
viz. a combination of three
maniples. Whether it was the maniples beside one another, or the
three behind one another, which were massed together, is uncertain,
probably the latter. The number of the legion at this time was,
roughly speaking, 6,000 (Plut. Sull.
, compared with Mar.
72; Cic. Att.
, compared with
Plut. Cic. 36
); though Caesar had
generally less than this number, sometimes not more than about 3,500
men in his legion: e. g. the 13th Legion, which he had at Ariminum
at the outbreak of the Civil War (Caes. B.C.
consisted apparently of 5,000 (Plut. Caes.
60), but Caesar himself reckons
two legions (B. G.
5.49, 7) and a few cavalry at
7,000 men. Still, whatever was the strength of the legions, the
number of cohorts was always 10. These had no traditional
arrangement, and were disposed of in battle just as the general
thought fit: perhaps the triplex acies
(e.g. B. G.
1.24, 2), viz. 4 cohorts in front and 3
in each of the other ranks, was the most usual; though the single
13, 2), double (Caes.
3.67, 3), and quadruple lines of battle (ib. 89,
3) are also found. The special application of the word cohors
to a definite portion of a legion
must be noticed, beside the technical use of the word to express the
divisions of the auxiliary force, the vague use that Livy makes of
it by applying it to any division of troops at all (parmata cohors,
4.38, 3), and the misuse by
so translating (σπεῖρα
compared with Plb. 15.9
). The pilum
was now made the common weapon of the whole legion, the haste
of the triarii
being done away with. The old standards--the
eagle, wolf. Minotaur, horse. and boar (Plin. Nat. 10.16
)--give place to the silver eagle (Cic. Cat. 1.9
which now becomes the chief standard of the legion.
The Roman cavalry had disappeared before Marius. Its last mention is
in the Spanish campaign of 140 B.C., where
it behaved with great pretension and insubordination (Mommsen,
3.200); and after the Jugurthine War it
vanishes entirely. Even the Italian cavalry had been for long unable
to cope with the enemies of Rome: it had been defeated by Hannibal
in Italy, and Scipio only won Zama by the cavalry of Masinissa. It
vanished completely in the Social War; and after that foreign
troops--Gauls, Spaniards, Thracians, and Africans (Plut. Ant. 37
)--were taken into the
service in larger numbers than heretofore. In Caesar's army they
were about a fourth or a fifth of the infantry: with 6 legions
(=about 21,000 men) he had 4,000 (Caes.
), with 5
legions 5,000 (B.C.
1.39, 1); in the army of Brutus
at Philippi there were more than 1,000 to the legion (App. BC 4.108
). Some minor changes
and improvements in practical details are attributed to Marius, such
as the muli Mariani,
contrivance fastened on the shoulder of the legionary to enable him
to carry his baggage (see below, p. 807a
), altering the pilum
], taking away the
from the auxiliary troops
(Festus, p. 238, s. v. parmulis
&c. The numbering of the legions probably began also in this
period; certain it is that we find it quite regular in Caesar's time
(C. I. L.
B. G. 8.8
, 2). Originally the legions
had been numbered according as they were raised (D. C. 38.47
); but then the numbers had no
durable significance, owing to the speedy disbanding of the legions.
The Auxiliary Forces under the Republic.
1. The Socii.
In the time of Tarquinius Superbus the Latins were incorporated
in the Roman army (Liv. 1.52
): but on their regaining their
independence after the establishment of the Republic, they
furnished their contingent to the united army, and held the
chief command alternately with the Romans. But after the great
Latin War, which ended in 338 B.C.,
the Latins became cives sine
The members of those municipia who lost
their constitution were enrolled in the legions, those who
retained their municipal constitution formed self-subsisting
divisions, such as the legio
we hear of in Liv. Ep.
(cf. Plb. 2.24
). After the Second Punic War, when the
differences of the old municipia ceased by the attainment of the
full franchise, such legions disappeared. The other kind of
Italian states besides the municipia--viz. the civitates foederatae
which retained self-government
on the basis of a treaty guaranteeing a definite amount of
troops--it was these communities which furnished the socii
to the Roman armies (cf.
25-58, ii.2 390-1).
They contributed nothing to the legions, but had to supply each
year a force of auxiliaries for the army, and ships and sailors
for the fleet. The allied state raised, swore in and paid (Liv. 27.9
) this force, but it was fed during service by the
Romans (Plb. 6.39
). The consul proclaimed by an edict
the amount of the force each state was to supply, and where and
when it was to assemble; and it appeared there with its own
leader and paymaster (ἄρχοντα καὶ
As to the actual force contributed,
Polybius varies in his account. Sometimes (3.107, 2; 6.26, 7) he
says the force of foot equalled that of the Romans, the horse
being three times that of the Roman horse--in both passages including
who were one-third of the horse
and one-fifth of the foot (see below). At another time he says
(6.30, 2) that the force of foot equalled that of the Romans,
the horse being twice that of the Roman horse--this time excluding
He agrees then as regards the
horse in all three passages. But the discrepancy is patent about
the infantry. All we can say is that Polybius, if he did not
make a mistake, was speaking only with a loose approximation in
the first two passages, as the expressions πάρισον
( “about equal” ) and
πάρισον ὡς ἐπὶ τὸ πόλυ
may lead us to infer. The last passage indeed probably gives the
correct view for Polybius, in his account of the battle on the
Trebia (3.72, 11), gives 16,000 Romans and 20,000 allies as the
complete force of infantry of two consular armies. Deducting
one-fifth, we get exactly the same number of allied and Roman
infantry; but the regular legionary force for two consular
armies ought to be 16,800, though Polybius himself, as we saw,
speaks of the legion as roughly consisting of 4,000 men (3.107,
10). But the force of allies is generally greater than those
given in these passages by Polybius. The elaborate schedule of
forces available by Rome in 225 B.C. given by Polybius (2.24
) from Fabius the annalist, and, as
it is reproduced in some of its numbers by other historians
xx.; Diod. xxv. fr.
13 Dindorf; Eutrop. 3.5
; Plin. Nat. 3.138
derived from official sources, is too defective to decide
details with certainty; but it shows that the active
force of the Romans in that year was only
one-fourth that of the allies (see Mommsen in Hermes,
11.49-60). Generally it was about
one-half (Vell. 2.15; Liv. 36.2
). According to Livy (40.36
the normal number (quantus semper
) of allies directly attached to two legions
was 15,000 infantry and 800 cavalry, and as a matter of fact we
do find these numbers in Liv. 33.43
. Other numbers of
allies for two legions are 15,000 and 600 (37.2, 4), 15,000 and
500 (34.56, 6), 10,000 and 600 (41.21, 4), 12,000 and 600 (41.9,
2), 20,000 and 800 (35.20, 4). For further details, see
Marquardt, op. cit.
ii.2 395, note 1; Weissenborn on Livy, 40.36
; and Mr.
Strachan-Davidson's Selections from Polybius,
As to the divisions
of the allies, they
were never independent divisions, but always portions of the
combined army (Weissenborn on Liv.
). In battle the allies
were placed on the wings, the two sections being called dextra
; Plb. 6.26
). After the Latin War in 338 till the
end of the Punic Wars, the allied infantry regularly formed
called after the
separate nations; thus we have cohortes
), cohortes Marrucina et
Peligna . . . Firmana Vertina Cremonensis duae turmae
equitum Placentina et Aesernina
). The cohort was the
usual contingent for each community, and was at this time the
unit of the allied infantry, just as the unit of the Roman
troops was the maniple: cohorts and maniples are often opposed
). Like the
maniple, the cohort had a standard (Liv.
), and was
regarded as a regular division in the camp [CASTRA
had 10 cohorts (Liv. 10.43
); sometimes we find 15 (Liv.
), though perhaps
the legion on this occasion was stronger than usual (Weiss. ad loc.
). The ordinary cohorts were
called cohortes alares
to distinguish them from the
), and in Caesar (Caes. Gal.
) from the
of these allies were, for
the contingent assigned to 4 legions, 12 praefecti sociorum,
appointed by the consuls
). These praefecti
Roman citizens (Liv. 23.7
). For a contingent of 2 legions
(there were 6 praefecti,
Besides these Roman
officers, there were the native officers, called ἄρχοντες
by Polybius (6.21
or even praefecti
by Livy (23.19
The former term was, however, the most common one used by that
historian for the generals of foreign states; and the latter
who commanded a
cohort must be carefully distinguished from the Roman praefecti,
who commanded the whole
(Weissenborn on Liv. 21.3
The number of the cavalry of the allies,
Polybius says, was three times that of the Romans; accordingly
1800 for two legions. It was divided into 4 alae
(in the strict sense) of ordinary cavalry
(called equites alarii,
opposed to legionarii equites,
; Tac. Ann.
; Veg. 2.1) and two alae
of [p. 1.787]extraordinarii.
in this strict sense of squadron of cavalry
consisted of 300 men, divided into 5 double turmae
of 60 men each [CASTRA
]. Each double turma
had a signum
(cf. Liv. 27.12
). This number of 30 always remained
constant for the single turma,
in case of increase of numbers it was the number of turmae
which was increased (Hyg.
is a general
term for a squadron of allied cavalry, just as cohors
is for a battalion of allied
infantry: thus we find during the Republic alae
of 400 and 500 men (Caes. Bell.
78, 7; Liv. 10.29
), just as there were cohortes
of 460, 500, and 600 men (Liv. 23.17
). But the
differed essentially from
the cohort in this, that while in the latter the soldiers were
of the one nation or people, the ala
was composed of different nationalities.
Marquardt (op. cit.
ii.2 400), however, thinks that as in the camp there was a
double turma of equites put beside a cohort of infantry, these
latter may have been of the same nationality as the cohort; cf.
--a passage which shows that a double turma of
cavalry appears to have been a normal contingent of cavalry from
a Latin colony, as a cohort was the normal contingent of
infantry (cf. Weissenborn on Liv.
) were a picked body of
horse and foot from the allies (Fr. Fröhlich,
Die Gardetruppen der röm. Republik,
1882, pp. 4 ff.). The extraordinarii
were one-fifth of the infantry of the allies
). If we take this exactly, we have 8,000 ordinarii
and 2,000 extraordinarii
for two legions. But we saw
Polybius avoided exact numbers, and it suits the arrangement of
the camp and the order of battle (e. g. Liv. 37.39
) better if
we suppose the ordinarii
the legionaries, i. e. normally 8,400, and place the extraordinarii
at 1600. These extraordinarii
were chosen by the
most suitable for real service (πρὸς τὴν
Pol. 6.26, 6). They formed
four cohorts (Liv. 40.27
; cf. 27.12, 14) of 400 men. The
one-third of the whole contingent (which normally was 1800,
three times that of the legionary cavalry), and accordingly
numbered 600. These formed two alae
(in the strict sense of squadrons of cavalry) of 300 men each
), which were divided into 5 double turmae
of 60 men each [CASTRA
]. The extraordinarii
formed a class
intermediate between the heavy and the light forces. They were
used for reconnaissances, flank movements, and generally on
difficult services which required vigour and celerity. They
appear to have been free from the duties of constructing the
camp and keeping watch (see Fröhlich, l.c.
properly so called did
not come into any prominence till the foreign wars of Rome.
Though usually they were taken into the service as allies
(Festus, p. 17: “Auxiliares dicuntur in bello socii
Romanorum exterarum nationum” ), yet there are some
traces of mercenary forces employed by the Romans in the Punic
Wars, e. g. Gauls (Zonar. 8.16
Celtiberians (Liv. 24.49
); but the Cretan archers taken at
Trasimene (Liv. 24.30
) were sent by Hiero (Plb. 3.75
). During the wars in the East their numbers increased
greatly. After the Social War the class of socii
disappeared entirely, and there were again
but two classes of soldiers: (1) legionaries from Italy, (2)
auxiliaries from the provinces, from allied states and princes,
and even from independent nations. The number of auxiliary
infantry varied according to necessity. We know that they were
divided into cohorts, out no more. Some of the cohorts were not
armed or disciplined in the Roman fashion, but used their
national arms, sagittarii,
3.4, 3), cohortes cetratae et scutatae
1.39, 1). The cavalry of the Roman army,
however, in Caesar's time consisted entirely of auxiliary troops
(Caes. Gal. 1.15
; cf. 2.24, 4).
Italians are found among the cavalry (App. BC 2.70
), but they are volunteers. The cavalry
consisted of Gauls, Spaniards (Plut.
), Thracians, Numidians (Sal. Jug. 38
), even Germans (Caes. Gal. 7.13
), They were formed into alae
of about 400 men each, which were
subdivided into turmae
4), commanded by praefecti equitum
(Caes. Gal. 3.26
), who were doubtless, in the
case of allied and independent states, natives (cf. Hirt.
III. The Imperial Period--the Standing Army.
The Empire established by the sword had to be retained by the sword,
and the army now becomes a standing one,--στρατιῶται ἀθάνατοι,
as Dio Cassius calls them
(56.40). The emperor is the supreme commander (imperator,
Dio Cassius, 57.8);
and to him, as represented by his images carried on a pole, the
legions and auxiliaries swore allegiance twice a year, on the date
of his accession (Plin. Epp.
10.52 (60)) and on the
Kal. Jan. (Tac. Hist. 1.55
besides of course the oath of allegiance at accession (Dio Cassius,
57.3). The oath was administered by the provincial governors in the
provinces and by the three praefecti at Rome.
1. The Legions.
Under the early Empire the legion contained 10 cohorts and 60
centuries--altogether between 5,000 and 6,000 men. Now that the
Pax Romana was established, they were mostly used on garrison
duty, and accordingly got again a small quota of cavalry, each
legion getting 120 in 4 turmae
30 each. These are the equites
of Tac. Ann.
1.57. From the
time of Hadrian the first cohort had 10 centuries (Eph.
4.227), as was the case in the latter half of
the third century also, according to the arrangement described
by Vegetius (2.6, 13), which was probably established by
Aurelian. This arrangement varied slightly from that of the
early Empire. The first cohort had 1105 men in 10 centuries, and
(cf. p. 799 b
); the other nine cohorts, 555 men in 5
centuries each. Each century consisted of 10 contubernia
(also called manipuli
), and each contubernium
was presided over by a decanus:
so that the infantry of the
legion consisted of 6,100 men and 5 ordinarii.
The cavalry were 726 soldiers, viz.
132 to the first cohort and 66 to each of the others; arranged
in 22 turmae,
each of 30 men and 3
officers (decurio, duplicarius,
cf. Veg. 2.6, 14; Hyg. § 16;
and see below, p. 809 a
). [p. 1.788]
Octavian, when in 36 B.C. he took over the 22 legions of Lepidus
(Appian, App. BC 5.123
amongst which were 8 of Sextus Pompeius, had the command of 45
legions (ib. 127, cf. 53). He then disbanded 20,000 veterans
(ib. 129), all the Pompeian legions (Dio Cassius, 49.12), and
most of those of Lepidus. At the battle of Actium, Antonius had
at most 30 and Octarian 25 (Plut. Ant.
), so that when the victory was won Octavian had a
little over 50 legions to dispose of. He retained the first 12
of his own and 6 of those of Lepidus and Antonius. This accounts
for two legions being found at times with the same number. He
retained these numbers in order not to confuse the soldiers by
unnecessary alteration, a distinction being sufficiently marked
by the name of the legion, partly perhaps to delude the people
that he had only 12 legions, or possibly with a hope that they
might be speedily disbanded. Augustus enrolled legions XIII. to
XX. in order to face the great German war waged in 3 A.D.
against Maroboduus, and afterwards against the Pannonians and
Dalmatians (cf. Vell. 2.104; Suet. Tib.
). In the subjoined list it will be seen that none
of these were planted in colonies, and none are found to have
duplicates. Legions XXI. and XXII. were added after the defeat
of Varus, in which three legions fell (XVII., XVIII., XIX.). As
to Legio I., which was probably disbanded after the defeat of
Varus (for we hear of a First legion getting its standards from
Tiberius, Tac. Ann. 1.42
Mommsen supposes its existence from the consideration that a
first legion can hardly have been wanting in the army of
Augustus. We now add the list of Augustus's legions, which were
25 at his death, 23 after the defeat of Varus (this reconciles
Tac. Ann. 4.5
Cassius, 4.23, 2), with the localities in which they were
stationed, as given by Mommsen (Res gestae d.
pp. 68-9), adding in square brackets here and
there a word as to the reason why such and such a legion was
disbanded; with a continuation of the legions which were
enrolled up to the time of Septimius Severus.
DURATION OF EXISTENCE.
||Disbanded after defeat of Varus(?).
mentioned after 70 A.D. [Probably disbanded on
account of its conduct in the rebellion of Civilis
||Existed in Dio Cassius's time.
||Syria (Marq. staatsv. ii.2 447, note 7)
||Took part in the
Parthian war of M. Antonius (Ac. Hist. 3.24)>
||At battle of
Philippi: hence probably its name
mentioned after 70 A.D. [Perhaps disbanded on
account of its vigorous support of Vitellius (Tac. H.
||Existed in Dio Cassius's time.
||Took part in African
war, 46 B.C. (App. BC
2.96), also in battle of Philippi: hence its
name. Veterans of this legion planted in a colony at
Berytus in 16 B.C.
||Enrolled by Caesar
(Suet. Jul. 24):
in 16 B.C. lost its eagle in Lower Germany (Vell.
mentioned after 70 A.D. [probably destroyed by the
Sarmatae (Suet. Dom.
6): yet Mommsen (Eph. Epigr.
5.214) and Schiller (Kaiserzeit. 511)
say it was disbanded by Vespasian.]
||Existed in Dio Cassius's time.
||At battle of
||Veterans planted at
Berytus, 16 B.C.
||Illyricum (Tac. Ann. 3.9; 4.23）
||At battle of
mentioned after Trajan. [Probably annihilated by the
Brigantes in Britain (Schiller, l.c. 607, note 6).]
||Fought in Sicilian
war at the Straits against Sext. Pompeius: hence its
name. Veterans of both tenth legions planted at
Patrae, 16 B.C.
||Existed in Dio Cassius's time.
||Veterans planted at
Patrae 16 B.C.
mentioned after 70 A.D. [Probably, like I.,
disbanded on account of its mutinous conduct in the
rising of Civilis (Tac. Hist. iv.).]
||Fell in defeat of Varus, A.D. 9.
Tac. Ann. 1.60
||Illyricum (6 A.D.),
afterwards in Lower Germany
||Existed in Dio Cassius's time.
mentioned after Domitian. [Disbanded for taking side
of Antonius Saturninus.]
mentioned after Trajan. [Last mention in C.
I. L. 3.36, of year 84 A.D.: if we are not to
suppose with Borghesi (4.254) that this was the
legion annihilated by the parthians in 162 A.D.
Added by Claudius by division of XV. and
||Disbanded by Vespasian as having revolted to
Civilis (Pfitzner, Gesch. der
Kaiserlegionen, p. 262).
||Upper Germany (Tac. Hist. 1.18,
||Existed in time of Victorinus (Cohen, 40, p. 16).
For its omission in Dio Cassius, see Marq.
Staatsv. ii.2, 452, note 1.
Added by Nero.
Lugdunensis (Tac. Hist.
Added by Galba.
||Spain (Tac. Hist. 2.67;
||Enrolled from the
fleet (C. I. L. iii. p. 907)
||Existed in Dio Cassius's time.
||Spain (Tac. Hist. 2.11）
|Added by Vespasian (Dio Cassius,
Added by Domitian.
Added by Trajan.
(C. I. L. 3.79).
||Was located for some
time in Upper Pannonia (C. I. L. iii.
Added by M. Aurelius.
Added by Sept. Severus.
||Alba, near Rome
Annali dell' Inst. 1867, p. 73.
An interesting list of the quarters of the different legions in
the middle of the first century, derived from the Histories of
Tacitus, is to be found in Borghesi, iv. p. 240, reproduced by
449, note 4; also of their quarters in the middle of the second
century in C. I. L.
6.3492 a, b (= Orelli, 3368,
3369). Detailed histories of the separate legions are numerous.
See Marquardt's notes; an admirable history of all the legions
individually is given by Grotefend in Pauly, 4.868 ff.
As to the names
of the legions, they
arose from various causes: (1) in the later Republic, sometimes
from the place of levy, e. g. V. Urbana (C. I. L.
5.2514), VIII. Mutinensis, IV. Sorana (see Mommsen on C.
10.5713); (2) from the people against whom
they successfully fought, e. g. IV. Scythica, or from the place,
X. Fretensis; (3) from divinities, e. g. I. Minervia; (4) from
division of a single legion, e. g. Primigenia (this part was
probably held the superior, and retained the eagle), or uniting
of two, e. g. Gemina (Caes. B.C.
3.4, 1), yet cf.
also Mommsen, Res gestae d. Aug.
p. 73, note 1
(5) from certain
insignia, e. g. probably the V. Alauda, certainly XII. Fulminata
); (6) various
epithets expressive of [p. 1.790]
devotion, e.g. pia, fidelis, constans,
victrix, aeterna, rapax;
(7) up till Caracalla's
time, when the emperor's name was added to the legions, except
in the case of a few, as VII. and XI. Claudia pia fidelis, it
marked the founder, as II. Trajana, XXX. Ulpia Victrix. After
Caracalla all legions bore the name of the reigning emperor (cf.
742, note 1).
2. The Auxilia.
Concerning the auxiliary troops under the Empire, Tacitus says
4.5): “At apud idonea
provinciarum sociae triremes alaeque et auxilia cohortium,
neque multo secus in iis virium: sed persequi incertum fuit
cum ex usu temporis huc illuc mearent, gliscerent numero et
aliquando minuerentur.” They consisted of those
forces, beside the legions, which were raised in the provinces.
Perhaps we may assume that in numbers they were about equal to
the legionaries (Suet. Tib. 16
They supplied the whole of the cavalry and a large contingent of
infantry. The latter (cohortes auxiliariae,
Tac. Ann. 1.49
) partly were equipped in Roman
fashion, partly retained their native weapons, and as such are
styled sagittarii, funditores, scutati,
(see Index to C. I.
iii. p. 1148 ff.), or collectively leves cohortes or ferentarius miles
(Tac. Ann. 1.51
). The latter passage
contrasts the swords and pila
the legionaries with the spathae
(broad two-edged swords without a point) and hastae
of the auxiliaries.
The regular auxiliary cohorts were divided into cohortes quingenariae
of 480 men, each
in 6 centuries (Hyg. § 28); or cohortes milliariae
of 1,000 men, each in 10
centuries. Some of these cohorts were exclusively infantry, and
such were called peditatae:
from the time of Vespasian at all events (Tac. Hist. 4.19
) it was found
necessary, in order to enable the cohort to be an independent
body capable of acting efficiently in garrison duty on the
frontiers, to join a certain number of cavalry to
Roman Soldier. (From Iwan Müller's
Handbuch, vol. iv. p. 745.)
some cohorts. These were called cohortes equitatae.
would consist of 360 infantry
in 6 centuries of 60 each, and 120 cavalry in 6 turmae
of 20 each (Hyg. § 27;
C. I. G.
5053): a cohors
of 760 infantry in 10 centuries
of 76 each, and 240 cavalry in 10 turmae
of 24 each (cf. Mommsen in Eph.
v. p. 31).
The cavalry were further divided into alae
of 960 men each, in 24 turmae
of 40 each, and alae
of 480 men each, in 16 turmae
of 30 men each. Josephus
3.5, 5) tells us that under Vespasian
the cavalry wore helmets and cuirasses; carried a long sword, a
long pole (κόντος ἐπιμήκης
and a buckler; and were furnished with a quiver, containing
three or more javelins with large points and as broad as spears.
Under Hadrian, as we learn from Arrian (Tact.
34), they had an iron visored gold-plaited helmet, with a plume
of red horse-hair, a light shield, and instead of a cuirass a
red Cimmerian tunic (i. e. made of Crimean leather). In the
preceding cut we see many of the above accoutrements. The
cuirass seems to be of leather. Note also the trousers (bracae
) and boots.
Besides the names we have mentioned, which distinguished the
cohorts according to their character and numbers (equitatae
or peditatae, quingenariae
) and the alae
according to their numbers, some, especially the alae,
were also called after the
provincial governor who first organised them: e. g. Auriana
(Tac. Hist. 3.5
Siliana (ib. 1.70), cohors Lepidiana (Diplomata xi. xii.
in C. I. L.
iii. pp. 854, 855), &c.
(A full list in Marquardt, Staatsv.
ii.2 473, note 5: also in Mommsen, Eph.
5.246 f.) It is quite a mistake to suppose
that they got their names from their commanders, as Borghesi has
shown (4.192) in the case of the ala Frontoniana,
which appears with many different commanders (cf. C. I.
3.788, 789, 793, 5331; Eph. Epigr.
v. p. 175). Very commonly they are called after the emperor who
organised them--Claudia, Flavia, Ulpia,
(C. I. L.
iii. Index, p. 1148
ff.). Sometimes, again, they were called after the country in
which they were stationed or had distinguished themselves, e.g.
Ala L. Flavia Augusta Britannica
xxvi.), Cohors I. Lusitanorum
(Dipl. xx., xxii.). Also they got such
honorary titles as Augusta, Victrix,
Veterana, Pia Fidelis
(C. I. L.
iii. Index, l.c.
). The cohorts were
numbered progressively only so far as to distinguish cohorts
otherwise undistinguished, e.g. Cohortes I., II., III.,
IV., Tungrorum milliaria equitata.
They were raised in the imperial provinces only (Mommsen in
19.45), though we hear
of a levy in Cyrenaica (Tac.> Ann.
They were seldom (Josephus, B. J.
stationed in the same province as they were raised in, nor
indeed ever left very long in any one province: see, e. g. the
transferences of Cohors I. Thracum
in the Diplomata (ix., xiv., xxxvi.). But as time went on it was
found impossible to keep each cohort of one nationality; and
very frequently vacancies were filled up by men of other
nations, especially from natives of the province in which the
division happened to be stationed, e. g. among the Equites Pannonii
in Britain there was a
decurio from Spain (Dipl. xxi.); in the cohortes Alpinorum
in Pannonia, [p. 1.791]
Pannonians are found (Dipl. xxxix., xlii., xii.).
There appear to have been special corps of auxiliary troops
and pedites singulares,
the oldest mention
of which is in the time of Vitellius (Tac. Hist. 4.70
). They consisted of picked
individuals from different nations, and as such differed from
the ordinary cohorts and alae.
special division of cavalry set apart for the service of the
emperor was called equites singulares
(see below, p. 795 b
). Sometimes the cohorts or alae
had the additional title of Civium Romanorum
), which signifies either that the people
from whom the corps was raised had citizenship previously, or
that it was given to the whole corps--most probably the latter
(Mommsen in Hermes,
The commanders of the auxiliary cohorts and alae
were for the most part Romans, and were
(Tac. Hist. 2.59
; Dig. 3
). The praefectura
was the second and the praefectura alae
the fourth step in the
equestrian career of honours, the primipilatus
being the first and the tribunatus legionis
being the third (e.
g. Wilmanns, 1249 b; Stat. Silv.
if.). Some of
the auxiliary cohorts, however, e. g. those equitum singularium
(C. I. L.
226, 228, Dipl. li.), and perhaps the cohortes milliariae,
like the cohortes praetorianorum, vigilum, urbanae,
(see below), were commanded by tribuni
instead of praefecti,
who stood on a level with the tribuni legionis:
e.g. a tribunus cohortis
becomes a praefectus alae
without being tribunus legionis
often (C. I.
3.1193, 9.5357, 10.3847). In later times the title
came to be applied to
the chief officers of all
(Boecking, Not. Dig.
After the grant of Roman citizenship to all the provinces by
Caracalla, the auxilia
entirely taken from Roman citizens. All that remained outside
this category were a few barbarian mercenary troops. These were
and were arranged neither in
cohorts nor in alae.
commanded by praepositi.
introduction of them may perhaps go back to Trajan (Dipl. xxv.),
and they formed the precursors of the Foederati. For the
divisions of barbarian cavalry in the third century called
see below, p. 808
Special Extra-Legionary Troops.
This must have been an old institution, not so much owing to
Livy's statement (2.21, 5) of its existence at the battle of
Lake Regillus as from the title praetoria
pointing to the time when the praetor was
general. But it was not in accordance with the nature of the
citizen army, and does not really appear in historical times
till the Numantine war in the army of Scipio the Younger. He
formed 500 of his friends and clients into a troop which Appian
(App. Hisp. 84
) calls an
and Festus (s.
v. p. 223 M.) a cohors praetoria.
They received once and a half the pay of the legionary. But the
) seems to point to their being cavalry, yet
the regular cavalry received three times the pay of the
legionary. Mommsen (l.c.
p. 27, note 3)
supposes that it was a privilege of the general to give certain
members of this body-guard a. horse; that he did so mostly to
who were men of good
birth; and that it is of these Appian is chiefly thinking; while
the notice about increased pay has reference to the mass of the
troop who were his clients and served on foot. The term cohors
can of course be applied to a
mixed body of horse and foot. Caesar had only one praetorian
cohort (B. G.
1.40, 15). Towards the end of the
Republic each commander had a praetorian cohort (Sal. Cat. 60
; Cic. Fam. 15.4
, cf. 10.30; App. BC 4.7
). After the battle of
Philippi the various praetorian cohorts had in all 8,000 men
(ib. 5.3). Later each of the triumvirs had several (ib. 5.24;
Plut. Ant. 39
): at the battle of Actium,
Octavian had at least five praetorian cohorts (Oros. 6.19
). These cohortes praetoriae
were soldiers picked from
veterans and from the equites
they were the successors of the clients of
Scipio, and had got more and
more separated from the body of friends,
who gradually cease to be soldiers. The two classes are
strikingly opposed under Caligula (Suet.
When Italians came to be practically excluded from legionary
service and confined to serve in the city troops (see below, p.
), such of them as wished to
make a profession of arms entered the auxiliary cohorts as
volunteers, the more readily as service in the cohorts was
lighter than in the legions and rewards quicker (Veg. 2.3).
Hence the origin of these troops which appear under many names:
e.g. Cohors I. Italica civium Romanorum
(Henzen, 6709); Cohors II. Civium Romanorum
2.4114); Cohors I. Civium
(ib. 5.3936), and a vast
number of titles with the word voluntariorum
occurring in them in Mommsen's index of
cohorts in Eph. Epigr.
5.248-9. That scholar
supposes (Res gestae d. Aug.
p. 72, note 1) that
the cohortes voluntariorum
originated from the freedmen Augustus enrolled (Vell. 2.113;
D. C. 55.31
; Suet. Aug. 25
; Macr. 1.11
“Caesar Augustus in Germania et Illyrico cohortes
libertinorum complures legit quas voluntarias
appellavit” ); but that they were not recruited
afterwards from freedmen, for we find recruits of foreign
extraction admitted to them, just as to the auxiliary cohorts,
to whom they are further assimilated in having to serve 25 years
(C. I. L.
iii. p. 907). An inscription
(C. I. L.
9.5835) shows us that there was a
thirty-second cohort of these voluntarii.
The centurion Cornelius in the Acts of
the Apostles (10.1) belonged to one of these cohorts (ἐκ σπείρης τῆς καλουμένης
). Whether the Ala I.
which recurs so often (Dipl. xi.,
xii., xxv.) was a similar institution is uncertain. Some of the
cohortes civium Romanorum
any rate, e. g. I., II., had cavalry attached to them (C.
6.3520; cf. Arrian, ἔκταξις,
(Schmidt in Hermes,
14.321-353).--The ancients (especially Serv. on
8.1) distinguished three kinds of service:
(1) legitima militia
(see p. 809 b
but logically, as Mommsen has pointed out (Eph.
division should be state-ordered service, comprising sacramentum
and voluntary service. Those who served in
the latter were the evocati.
originally only in periods of great crisis (Serv. on
7.614) that such invitation was made, not by
a magistrate, but by any man of spirit and influence, who called
on those who wished their country's safety to follow him.
According to strict legal right, these volunteers were not
soldiers, but pro militibus
2.157); they did not serve in a legion or
a cohort, they had no definite leaders, nor had they any right
to demand pay, though probably they always received rewards in
larger measure than the ordinary soldiers; certainly they did in
later times (Caes. B.C.
1.3, 2; cf. Mommsen, l.c.
143, note 1). But afterwards it
became the practice for generals, no longer in the name of the
state but in their own name, to invite, as a rule specially
Caes. Gal. 3.20
), veterans (B.C.
1.3, 2) to renew their service. These evocati
stood in rank above the ordinary soldiers,
probably on a level with the centurions (Caes.
1.17, 4; 3.53, 1 ; 91, 1; Vell. 2.70, 3,
compared with D. C. 47.46
); were perhaps only used in battle,
and freed from all ordinary duties (Marquardt,
ii.2 387, note 6);
they had horses on the march (Caes.
find such troops as these in the time of Flamininus (Plut. Flam. 3
; Liv. 32.3
Catiline (Sal. Jug. 84
59, 3), Cicero
(Cic. Fam. 15.4
), Caesar (ll. cc.; cf. C.
10.3886, 6011), Octavian (D. C. 45.12
). They played a considerable part in the civil wars,
but seldom appear under the Empire, it not being consonant with
the order of the standing army to have forces which could not be
formed into definite troops (Mommsen, op.
144). When they do appear, the invitation was of
course made no longer by a private individual, but by the
emperor (Tac. Hist. 2.82
Those who responded to the invitation were sometimes called
(Orelli, 3580). But if
they practically disappear under the Empire, a new body was
formed, viz. the evocati Augusti.
These were a special corps (σύστημα
D. C. 55.24
) established by Augustus which continued till
Christian times (C. I. L.
6.2870). The evocati
which he called out after the
death of Caesar (Dio Cass. l.c.
the name; and the features of voluntary service and of not being
formed into regular troops, i. e. cohorts or legions (App. BC 3.40
), which these
possessed, in some
measure formed the transition to the evocati
properly so called. But the latter
differed essentially from the former, who were rather like the
described in the
last section, in the following respects:--(1) The evocati Augusti
had no fixed time of
service; the regular evocati
released after the crisis which called them out was passed. (2)
The evocati Augusti
ordinary and continuous branch of the service: the regular
temporary. (3) The evocati Augusti
had civil rather than military functions, e.g. ab actis fori
(C. I. L.
9.5839), a quaestionibus praef. praet.
(ib. 6.2755), architectus
“a surveyor” (ib. 6.2545), agrimensor
p. 121, ed.
Lachm.). Such functions as these they had already performed
while in the army; and the main cause of the establishment by
Augustus of this special body of evocati
was to get men who had been specially trained
in definite branches of state service which were usually
administered by soldiers to remain, after they were entitled to
discharge, in the performance of their duty outside the regular
army. This he effected by giving them increased rank (for they
stood next the centurions above the principales, C. I.
6.1009), increased pay (probably nearly that of a
centurion), and the right of carrying a vitis
(Dio Cass. l.c.
were often employed on special duties; thus we find one
appointed to guard Vonones (Tac. Ann.
). Further proof that they were in a measure
civilians is that their pay was called salarium,
that militia in
is always (e.g. C. I. L.
opposed to evocatio,
and that they
never receive the military distinctions of torques,
but only a
crown (Mommsen, l.c.
p. 152). Nor did
the evocatus in legione
) belong to the
legion in the same sense as the soldier or centurion. He acts
for the legion, e. g. caters for it (C. I. L.
6.2893), but does not belong to it. The privilege of invitation
to this service, which was coveted so as to avoid becoming a
and being discharged,
appears to have belonged practically, if not of right, to the
city soldiery, and especially to the praetorians: for of all the
inscriptions only three belong to the urban cohorts, one to the
fleet of Misenum, the rest to the praetorians. They were
probably subject to the praefectus
(C. I. L.
body-guard of equestrian youths formed by Galba, whom he called
was quite special and
temporary (Suet. Galb.
This word has two meanings: (a
who bears a vexillum
), and this is its general
use when it is added to a name to mark a particular branch of
duty, e.g. C. I. L.
) one who serves under a vexillum,
and such is its meaning when
used generally and in the plural. Now a vexillum
and a signum
differ in that the former is temporary and
extraordinary, the latter is fixed and regular. Hence different
classes of those who serve under vexilla.
(1) Those veterans who had served out their
time of twenty years, and who for one reason or another,
financial or military, were not yet provided for. These were
nominally dismissed (exauctorati,
Tac. Ann. 1.36
), but remained
under a vexillum
(ib. 26). They
were treated as a select troop, used only in battle, and were
free from all other duties (ib. 36). These troops of veterans
are usually called vexilla
; C. I. L.
5.4903). (2) Any troop
separated from the main body under a special commander had its
(Caes. Gal. 6.36
), was called
(the latter term only in
Inscriptions), and its members vexillarii.
Of this class, besides the quite general
expressions vexilla equitum,
2.78), we find vexillationes
of the legions used for
making roads, bridges, fortifications, &c. (Tac. Ann. 1.20
; C. I.
3.1979, 1980, 3200), as outposts [p. 1.793]
through the provinces--such are doubtless the
multae et diversae stationes
Hadrian refers to in his speech to his soldiers at Lambaesis
(C. I. L.
8.2532 A, b; cf. Eph.
4.528)--or as detachments dispatched to the
theatre of war; e.g. C. I. L.
Pontius Sabinus . . . praepositus vexillationibus milliariis
tribus expeditione Britannica
expedition), Leg. VII. Gem.
(stationed in Spain),
VIII. Aug., XXII. Primigen.
Germany). This, as well as the inscription in Bull. dell'
1868, p. 60, praef. vexillation. eq.
Moesiae infer. et Daciae,
shows that a combined band
need not necessarily
be taken from the one province (cf. C. I. L.
2.3272, yet cf. Mommsen ad loc.
usually such was the case (Tac. Hist.
Wilmanns, 1429). Vexillarii
auxiliary cohorts appear also (Tac.
). The numbers of a vexillatio,
though often 1000 (C. I.
8.2482, 10.5829), varied: hence the different rank of
the commander: for he is sometimes a praepositus
of equestrian rank, sometimes a
centurion (Eph. Epigr.
4.524), or a tribunus legionis
(Henzen, 6453), or a
8.7050), sometimes a dux
of senatorial rank. (This term dux
generally signifies an active military
command of an unusual nature, as when a subaltern officer holds
command of a legion: cf. C. I. L.
Mommsen in Eph. Epigr.
1.135, note 2, and in the
appendix to Sallet's Die Fürsten von
pp. 72-75.) From the time of the Gordians, at
any rate (C. I. L.
takes an entirely new signification,
viz. that of a troop of cavalry (ib. 3.405, 8.9045, 255 A.D.),
and in this sense it is used in the Code (7.64, 9; 10.54, 3):
cf. Veg. 2.1; 3.4, 10; Kuhn, Die Verfassung und
Verwaltung des röm. Reichs,
There was probably a numerus
vague term for “troop” under a single commander) of
in each legion
(C. I. L.
6.3341), if that inscription does
not refer to the special numerus
Rome. The numerus
was commanded by
a centurion, who is called in inscriptions centurio frumentarius
(e.g. C. I.
8.2825). They appear in all the provinces which had
legions, and even in the inermes
ii.2 492-3). Their functions were partly
connected with the corn-supply (C. I. L.
and as such their inscriptions are found all along the Appian
Way to Puteoli (ib. 10.1171, 6095, 6575), and nowhere else in
South Italy. Their chief station was in Rome, but there was
probably a division at Ostia also (Marquardt, l.c.
). Partly they acted as letter-carriers (Capitol.
Max. et Balb.
10, 3), partly too as spies
11, 4), and in later times as
police (Euseb. Hist. Eccl.
), a function perhaps confined to the provinces.
They appear to have been instituted by Hadrian: for we first
hear of them under that emperor, and no frumentarii
are found to belong to a legion which
ceased to exist before Hadrian's time.
With regard to the numerus frumentariorum
in the city, they nearly always state the legion to which they
belonged (C. I. L.
6.3331-3361), a fact which
shows that, though practically free from the legion, yet they
were technically recognised as belonging to one. Confirmatory
evidence on this point is that inscriptions of frumentarii
have been found in places
where the legion to which they are stated to have belonged never
lay, e. g. in Lambaesis of a frumentarius
of V. Macedonica, which belonged to
Upper Moesia (ib. 8.2867). In the post-Severian times these
had a place in the
in the Second
Region, near Mount Caelius. For further particulars see Henzen,
The Garrison of the City under the Empire.
These were what the cohors praetoria
of the Republic developed into under the military monarchy. The
was now wherever the
emperor was. We have seen above that there were several
praetorian cohorts at the end of the Republic (p. 791 a
). Augustus established nine praetorian
cohorts (Tac. Ann. 4.5
): three of
these he quartered in different parts of Rome, keeping one to
act as guard (Tac. Ann. 1.7
the rest he scattered about Italy in places where he was wont to
stay himself (Suet. Aug. 49
37). It was a great stroke of Sejanus
concentrating the praetorian cohorts into one camp before the
Viminal gate; and the vast power this concentration threw into
their hands is duly insisted on by historians (Tac. Ann. 4.2
; Suet. Tib. 37
; D. C. 57.19
). The supreme commander of these was of course the
emperor (in Tac. Ann. 1.7
gives the watchword); but from the year 2 B.C. (D. C. 4.10
) the praetorians were commanded in the name of the
emperor by two praefecti praetorio,
sometimes by one, after the time of Commodus by three (Mommsen,
For a list of these praefecti
up to Diocletian, see Hirschfeld,
p. 219 ff.
The number of praetorian cohorts was raised probably by Claudius
to 12, for we find the xi. and xii. praetorian cohort mentioned
in several inscriptions (C. I. L.
this increase of the number of cohorts to Claudius, because it
certainly is found in existence in Nero's time (C. I.
5.7003), is not mentioned by Tacitus, and Claudius
certainly raised the number of the cohortes
). Vitellius raised the number to 16 (Tac. Hist. 2.93
reduced it to 9 (Diploma x.). But before 130 A.D. (C. I.
6.208) a tenth must have been added, and this
number certainly subsisted till the third century (Diploma
lvii., 298 A.D.).
Each cohort was a cohors milliaria
(D. C. 55.10
each century having a turma
cavalry (Tac. Ann. 1.24
; C. I. L.
6.100). We may possibly conjecture that, like the cohorts of the
legionaries and auxiliaries, each praetorian cohort was divided
into 10 centuries and 10 turmae;
but such an analogy is not very reliable, for we know that each
cohort of the Vigiles,
seven centuries (cf. Mommsen in Eph. Epigr.
4.241). Each cohort was commanded by a tribune (e. g. Wilm.
1639). The praetorians were recruited from volunteers coming
principally from Italy or the civilised provinces of Spain,
Macedonia, or Noricum [p. 1.794]
（Tac. Ann. 4.5
; D. C. 74.2
); and this
is fully attested by inscriptions--viz. C. I. L.
6.3885 (147 A.D.); 2381 a, b, c (153-156 A.D.); 2382 a, b
(175-178 A.D.): cf. Mommsen in Hermes,
4.118. From the time of Septimius Severus,
however, this was changed: the praetorians were recruited from
the most tried of the barbarian troops (Dio Cass. l.c.
), as is attested by the names found
in inscriptions, e.g. C. I. L.
6.2385. On the
nationalities and native places of the praetorians, see the
indices of Bormann and Henzen in Eph. Epigr.
4.322-326; Oscar Bohn, Ueber die Heimath der
1883, and in Eph.
5.250-258; Mommsen in Hermes,
19.52. The length of service in the
praetorian cohorts was 16 years (D. C.
; Tac. Ann. 1.17
); the pay from the
time of Tiberius, 720 denarii yearly (see below, p. 809 a
A word must here be said on the officer called trecenarius,
who often appears (e.g. C. I.
2.4461, 3.454. Complete list in Eph.
iv. pp. 242-3). In early times the chief
centurion of the first cohort of the praetorians was called
10.4872); but, owing to the excessive danger to the
state of such a special position among a body like the
praetorians, it was arranged that the chief centurion of the
first cohort should not hold superior rank to the others. The
chief centurions of the different cohorts appear to have been
probably because they
commanded 300 men, certainly not
the pay was HS. 300,000, which would be three times that of a
and the trecenarius
ranked on a level with the
second centurion of the legion primus
(cf. Henzen, 6767, 6877), inferior to
the primus pilus
(ib. 6771 and
). Just as the primus pilus
was the highest position a
centurion could gain in the legionary force, so the trecenarius
was the highest he could
gain in the praetorian; and, if promoted, he had to pass to
another branch of the army, viz. the legions. Hence the title
(Orelli, 3444, 3457; C. I. L.
3.3427). The principes castrorum
among the praetorians (Orelli, 3457; C. I. L.
6.216, 10.5064) seem to have been two centurions selected from
who, like the principes
in the legion (Veg. 2.8), had
the general oversight of the camp.
(O. Eichhorst, De cohortibus urbanis
1865: cf. also C. I.
6.2861-2948).--The praetorians and the urban
cohorts, both in the lists of veterans and in the Diplomata (e.
g. x., xlvii.)--see Bormann in Eph. Epigr.
318--appear to form one closely connected body, though the urban
cohorts were inferior in rank, only getting half the pay of the
praetorians (see below, p. 809 a
and having to serve twenty years (Dig.
). Soldiers are advanced from the
legions to the urban cohorts, and thence to the praetorians
(e.g. C. I. L.
2.4461). They were established by
Augustus in custodiam urbis
(Suet. Aug. 49
; D. C. 55.24
), put under the authority of the praefectus urbis
), and perhaps appointed at the same time
as that officer, viz. 24 A.D. (Eichhorst, p. 3). Each cohort had
originally 1500 men (Dio Cass. l.c.
Vitellius's time 1000 (Tac. Hist.
), and was commanded by a tribunus
; Eichhorst, Nos. 5-25). Each cohort consisted
probably of 10 centuries commanded by centurions (Eichhorst,
Nos. 26-76 and p. 7). The number of the praetorian cohorts seems
to have been four in the time of Tiberius, three for duty in
Rome (Tac. Ann. 4.5
) and one for
service at Lyons (ib. 3.41). After the model of this latter
Claudius (Mommsen in Hermes,
16.645) added two at Puteoli and Ostia to guard against fires
(Suet. Cl. 25
reduced them to four (Tac. Hist.
), while Vespasian increased them to five by creating
Cohors I. Urbana
abroad. In Caracalla's time they were four (Dipl. xlix.), and
were still in existence at the beginning of the fourth century
(C. I. L.
6.1156). This inscription shows
that at this time they were located in the Forum Suarium
in the Seventh Region (Preller,
p. 98; Mommsen,
The history of the urban cohorts is perplexing. It must be
remembered that they formed a closely connected body with the
praetorians, the numbers of the urban cohorts continuing those
of the praetorians. Thus under Tiberius the urban cohorts are
numbered X., XI., XII., XIII., the last, viz. XIII., being used
for service at Lugdunum (Boissieu, Inscr. antiques de
pp. 353-361). When Claudius raised the
praetorian cohorts to 12 and the urban to 6, these latter were
probably numbered XIII.-XVIII. We do find about this time XV.
(C. I. L.
10.1765), XVI. (Henzen, 6767,
though this is not strong evidence), XVII. at Ostia (Tac. Hist. 1.83
), at Lyons
(Inscript. of Moulins in Hirschfeld, Lyon in der
p. 27), XVIII. (Tac. Hist. 1.64
). For the
possible transferences of these cohorts, see Mommsen in Hermes,
16.646. Vespasian created the
Cohors I. Urbana
and sent it to
Lugdunum, sending XIII. to Carthage. In the second and third
centuries XIII. appears at. Lugdunum and I. in Africa (Mommsen
in Eph. Epiqr.
5.119, 120). The sending of these
select troops to Africa was probably for fiscal purposes, as
Africa from Nero's time became highly important in the matter of
taxes. Under Antoninus Pius there appear in Rome cohortes urbanae
X., XII., XIIII.
(C. I. L.
6.1009); and note that this
inscription proves the simultaneous existence of Coh. X.
and Coh. X. Praet.
Caracalla's. time (Dipl. xlix.), X., XI., XII., XIIII. are the
Cohort XIII. disappears; perhaps it was abolished by Severus
when he conquered Albinus at Lugdunum (Renier,
1864, p. 214).
3. The Statores (
These appear in the Republic among the apparitors of the
provincial governor, on a level with the lictors (Cic. Fam. 2.1. 9
). Under the Empire they seem
to have been entirely confined to the special service of the
emperor, and so often called Statores
(C. I. L.
6.2949). They took
rank between the cohortes vigilum
as one can see from
the lists of promotion (e. g. Wilmann's, 1598, 1617), and stood
in close connexion with the praetorians (Hyg. § 19; cf.
C. I. L.
6.1009). They formed a numerus statorum praetorianorum
10.1766), consisting of several centuries (ll. cc.
). Their commander appears to have been called
ii. pp. 291, No. 339) or Curator
(Herzog, Gall. Narb.
（C. I. L.
6.1056-1058, 2959-3091).--These cohorts
were established by Augustus in 6 A.D. as a night-watch, both to
prevent fires and to act as police (Mommsen,
where a full account of the night-watch of the Republic is
given). They were part of the regular army (Dig. 37
), as promotion was made from them to the
urban and praetorian cohorts and the legions (Orelli, 3444;
C. I. L.
6.2780), but still we find them of a
somewhat lower rank than the other corps of soldiers; for their
functions required a variety of un-military appliances for
rendering aid in case of fire--viz. centones,
siphones, scalae, perticae
--and on this account they
appear to have been nicknamed Sparteoli
Cange, s.v. Tert. Apol.
39: cf. Mayor on Juv. 14.305
); and we find they had
assistants with duties essentially those of police, e.g.
(see below, pp. 802
). The sebaciarii,
so frequent mention is made in the inscriptions on the walls of
of Coh. VII.
(C. I. L.
6.2998-3091), were men who supplied
by the month (ib. 3062) tallow lights (faces
) to the vigiles
for use in their patrols. Their standards were the extraordinary
not the ordinary
4.356, 370), probably owing to their duties not
being altogether strictly military. Accordingly Tacitus passes
them over in his enumeration (Ann.
They consisted of freedmen (D. C.
; Strabo v. p.235
; Suet. Aug. 25
). According to the
Lex Visellia (24 A.D.), a freedman got citizenship if he served
six years in the vigiles;
senatusconsultum shortening the period to three years (Ulpian,
3, 5; Gaius, 1.32a, ed. Studemund), and qualifying them for further
advance in the army. After Sept. Severus there were many freemen
in the vigiles
(Dio Cass. l.c.
). The whole corps consisted of
seven cohorts of about 1000 men each (in C. I. L.
6.1057 the total in the cohort is 924: ib. 1058 it is 960). Each
cohort had two regions of the city to look after (Dig. 1
, pr.), and in each region a watchhouse
). Regions 1 and 2
fell to Cohort V., 3 and 5 to II., 4 and 6 to III., 7 and 8 to
I., 9 and 14 to VII., 10 and 11 to VI., 12 and 13 to IV.
(Jordan, Topographie der Stadt Rom,
1.1, 307; cf.
ii. p. 573). There were probably equites among the vigiles,
though Mommsen on C. I.
6.3045 thinks not. Each cohort fell into 7
centuries, averaging about 135 men each (ib. 6.1056-1059), under
centurions (Mommsen, Staatsrecht,
ii.2 1009, note 2), and was commanded by a
6.1599). The whole corps was under the praefectus vigilum
ὁ ἔπαρχος ὁ νυκτοφυλακῶν
(D. C. 52.33
), who was of
equestrian rank, not a magistrate, but only appointed extra ordinem utilitatis causa
). The only higher equestrian positions
were the praefecti Aegypti
In early times his
jurisdiction was very restricted, as all serious cases came
before the praefectus
But under Sept. Severus the
jurisdiction of the equestrian praefectus
was extended at the expense of that of the
senatorial praefectus urbi.
further details as to his police jurisdiction, see Dig. 1
Mommsen, Staatsrecht, ii.2
1011. For a list of praefecti vigilum,
1.145 if. Modestinus
the jurist was a praefectus vigilum
(C. I. L.
6.266). The praefectus
had a deputy, a subpraefectus
(ib. 414 b, 5.8660). These facts have
been mostly elucidated from (1) two lists of Cohort V. treated
by O. Kellermann, Vigilum Romanorum latercula duo
1835; (2) discoveries made in 1858,
which fixed the locality of four stations of the vigiles
(De Rossi, Annali dell'
265-297, 391-2); (3) in 1866 the
discovery of the excubitorium
Coh. VII. and all its inscriptions (C. I. L.
Non-Roman Troops in the Garrison.
This troop was instituted by Augustus. Previous to the battle of
Actium he had a corps of Calagurritani as a body-guard, but
afterwards a manus
These he disbanded after the defeat of Varus (Suet. Aug. 49
), but they appear
again under Tiberius (Tac. Ann.
), Caligula (Suet. Cal.
), and Nero (Tac. Ann. 13.18
). They were taken
from the German tribes belonging to the Empire, and their duty
was the guarding of the imperial family. Thus we find them in
the body-guard of Tiberius (C. I. L.
Germanicus (ib. 4337), sons of Germanicus, Nero and Drusus (ib.
4337, 4342), Agrippina (Tac. Ann.
; Suet. Nero 34
&c. We cannot argue from C. I. L.
that they had cavalry among them. They were not divided into
centuries and turmae,
but formed a
which fell into decuriae
of slaves. For these Germans were
legally slaves, though practically soldiers; and their being
slaves is the mark which distinguishes these servi milites
from the other foreign troops (cf.
Mommsen, Schweizer Nachstudien,
16.459, note 1; also Hermes,
19.30, 31). They were disbanded
by Galba (Suet. Galb.
12), and do not appear in
Tacitus's time, as may be proved from his use of tum
1.24. Nor do
they appear in later times either; for the Γερμανοὶ
mentioned in Herodian (4.13, 6) and Dio
Cass. (55.24, 7; cf. Capitol. Maxim. et Balb.
are not this German body-guard at all--for none of the
inscriptions referring to the German body-guard under that name
are later than the Claudian era (Mommsen, l.c.
), nor do they appear in the Hyginian camp--but
are the equites singulares,
took their place.
(Henzen, Sull' Equites Singolari,
C. I. L.
6.3173-3323.--This troop was
instituted by either Trajan or Hadrian (C. I. L.
6.3309). Henzen places their origin in Domitian's time, but
Tacitus (Tac. Ann. 1.24
not mention them, and they are exactly the sort of institution
we should expect from Hadrian (cf. H. Schiller,
616, note 4). The inscription in
Orelli (3525) which refers them to Augustus is utterly spurious.
They are sometimes indeed styled equites
added (Henzen, 26 ff.), but this is exceptional; and they must
be carefully distinguished from the ordinary singulares
of whom something has been said on p.
They appear originally to
have been taken from the provinces on the Rhine or the Danube;
none come from Italy or the Gallic
or Spanish provinces. They formed a force complementary to the
Praetorians, who were mostly raised from these more civilised
provinces (Mommsen in Hermes,
19.54). They were connected with the auxiliary cavalry, but
stood in a higher grade: thus we find frequent promotions from
the auxiliary cavalry to the Equites
(C. I. L.
6.3199, 3234, 3238, &c.). If a soldier is promoted from
the latter to the former, he becomes a decurio
in the auxiliary horse (ib. 6.228, 1.
17). They ranked close to the Praetorians, as may be inferred
from their position in the Hyginian camp ( § 23); but
we cannot infer from C. I. L.
2.4147 that the
Equites singulares Augusti
promoted to be centurions; for the omission of
in that inscription renders its validity very
questionable (Mommsen in Hermes,
16.462, note 2). They had probably two divisions, as they had
two camps in the city, viz. the castra
(C. I. L.
and the castra nova
(ib. 3217) or
which was built by Septimius
Severus (cf. Herodian, 3.13, 4; cf. Dipl. i.). They left these
camps only when the emperor took the field (Hyg. § 23).
They seem to have been under the general command of the praefectus praetorio,
having a tribune (C. I. L.
6.224, 226-8). We
find, too, perhaps a praefectus
(ib. 3261) and a praepositus
1639), but these were probably temporary officers. The
Equites singulares Aug.
wore a helmet without
any plume; carried an oval shield, sword, and lance (ib. 3214,
3290; Henzen, op. cit.
p. 50). The
figures on these Inscriptions appear to show that they had
slaves, and were therefore free themselves,--a fact to be
noticed, as this is the main distinction between them and their
predecessors, the Germani. They probably possessed Latin rights:
for they certainly were not Roman citizens (Dipl. li.); nor
again are their names in the inscriptions at all of the usual
type of nomina peregrina,
cognomen of son with cognomen of father (e. g. Adiatullus
Vepotali f.), but nearly always they have the regular Italian
three names or they omit the praenomen (C. I. L.
6.3309). It is to be noted, too, that the tribe is never added.
For further particulars, see Mommsen in Hermes,
The Provincial Militia.
Tacitus often (Hist.
1.11; 2.81, 83;
3.5) speaks of the inermes provinciae,
by which he means those provinces in which no legions were
stationed. These were (1) Senatorial provinces (except Africa), in
which we learn that the proconsuls had some soldiers (Dig. 1
) separated from the main corps;
but that they were very few Pliny's correspondence with Trajan
shows. Pliny had one cohort, but from that he had to give 10
beneficiarii, 2 equites, and a centurion to the praefect of the
coast, and more were asked for (Plin. Ep.
(32)). He asked for a century of legionaries for
Juliopolis, but was refused (77 , 78 ). In fact he had so
few that servi publici
were guards of
the prison (19 , 20 ), not as usual in other provinces,
who were military men.
Trajan's reason seems to have been that as few soldiers as possible
should be separated from the main corps (ne
milites a signis absint
). At certain points we hear of
small military posts in senatorial provinces, e. g. at Eumenia in
Greater Phrygia, where several high roads met (C. I.
3902 c). (2) Imperial provinces in which there was no
legion stationed. But generally in such a province there was some
small force: e. g. in Lyons we have seen there was a cohort of urban
soldiery; in Dalmatia we find two cohorts at all events (C.
iii. p. 282); in Pontus one cohort (Tac. Hist. 3.47
). (3) Provinces
governed by Procurators, e. g. the Cottian Alps (Suet. Tib. 37
); Rhaetia, in which in
108 A.D. there were 4 alae
cohorts=over 8,000 men (Dipl. xxiv.); Noricum, which had 4 alae
and 14 cohorts (Dipl. lxx.; Eph.
4.503); Thrace, which had 2,000 men (Joseph.
2.164); Judaea, which had 2 alae
and 5 cohorts (ib. Ant.
19.2, 9); Sardinia (Dipl. xviii.). But they were so few in
comparison to the extent of the country and so scattered that
Aristides (i. p. 349) rightly says that the nations do not know
where the forces are which keep them in subjection.
To make up for this deficiency of soldiers, there was a threefold
kind of militia in the provinces:--
By the Lex Coloniae Genetivae (Urso in Baetica) we find it
incumbent on the municipal magistrates to keep the
fortifications in order, and for protection of their boundaries
to appoint commanders to lead out armed forces (armatos educere
), such commanders to
have the same authority as the tribuni
in the Roman army (Lex Col. Genet.
xcviii., ciii.; Eph. Epigr.
2.110, 112); and we
know also that colonies had often to defend themselves (Tac. Hist. 4.65
; Amm. Marc. 25.9, 2
2. Special Provincial.
) the Praefectus orae maritimae
in Tarraconensis, who
was a commander of coast-guards (Dig.
and had two cohorts under him (C. I. L.
2.4138),--cf. the tribunus militum cohortis
in Baetica (ib. 2224); though the title
points to these being regular
imperial troops; (b
) in Noviodunum
there was a praefectus arcendis
which implies a force for the same
purpose (Inscr. Helvet.
) various kinds of police officers and their men, e.
, pr.), διωγμῖται
(Capit. M. Aurel.
1.213). For more about these, see
3. General Provincial.
In times of danger or confusion the main body of youths in a
province appears to have been sometimes utilised for military
service. This was often the case against the Pirates in Sicily
(Cic. Ver. 5.17, 43
; 5.24, 60
). In imperial
times we hear of such troops of native youths in not completely
civilised provinces, such as Cappadocia, Rhaetia, the Maritime
Alps, and Noricum (Tac. Ann.
3.5). We hear, too, of a people supporting at its own expense
fortresses which probably commanded military roads, e. g. the
Helvetii (Tac. Hist. 1.67
Prior to Hadrian's time such forces were only used locally; but
later similar corps often appear among the imperial forces,
still retaining their nationality (e.g. C. I. L.
7.1002). Tacitus (Ann.
l.c.) calls this militia
chap. 7) τὸ συμμαχικόν,
and [p. 1.797]
Hyginus (chap. 43) symmacharii
(according to Mommsen's emendation for the
19.224). They ranked below even
8.2728) and were usually commanded by praepositi
not of equestrian rank,
appointed probably by the provincial governor: sometimes,
however, the commander is styled praefectus
Cf. Mommsen in Hermes,
further details, see R. Cagnat, De
municipalibus et provincialibus militiis in imperio
1880, and Mommsen in Hermes,
The higher Officers of the Legions
(see especially Madvig, Die Befehlshaber und das Avancement in
dem römischen Heere,
in his Kleine
No. 10, pp. 477-560).
They were six for each legion, so twenty-four for the four
legions, and were chosen originally by the consul. In 362 B.C.
the people laid claim to elect six out of the twenty-four (Liv. 7.5
in the comitia tributa
called by Asconius, p. 142, comitiati,
but see Mommsen, Staatsrecht,
ii.2 562, notes 1, 2); in 311 B.C. they elected sixteen (ib.
9.30, 3), and in 207 B.C. all twenty-four (ib. 27.36, 4). They
were regular magistrates of the Roman people (see the Lex
Acilia, C. I. L.
Cic. Clu. 54
); they canvassed for the post
(Sal. Jug. 63
) and held office
for a year (Cic. Att. 13.3. 3
), beginning on Jan. 1st
(Cic. Ver. 1.10, 30
). But the people never claimed
to elect more than the twenty-four; so when the number of
legions increased, the consuls had the appointment of all the
rest. Those tribunes chosen by the consuls were, as opposed to
those elected by the people, from the first called Rufuli
), because, says Festus
(p. 260 M.), Rutilius Rufus brought forward a law fixing their
rights. Under Augustus, but apparently not later (Mommsen,
C. I. L.
10.788), we find the same
distinction maintained in the tribuni militum
(often in Pompeian inscriptions, e.g.
C. I. L.
10.820, 822, 830, 837, &c.)
and the tribuni militum Augusti
(ib. 2.3852). It was customary in Polybius's time to elect
fourteen tribunes who had served five campaigns and ten who had
served ten (Plb. 6.19
); and in the Punic and Macedonian wars
tribunes of the soldiers appear who had held the consulship,
praetorship, and aedileship; but as a general rule the tribunes
were young men of rank: Scipio was one at the age of twenty
), and Flamininus at that of eighteen (Plut. Flam. 1
; cf. Madvig, p. 544,
note 1). These young men began their duties either by serving in
the cavalry or by being contubernales
of the commander. After getting some
little experience in this way, they either entered the civil
service by becoming a vigintivir;
they continued in the military service were appointed to the praefecture of a cohort
or to the tribunate of a legion
them equestrian positions (Caes. Gal.
, compared with
3.10, 2), the latter slightly but not much the more
distinguished--and later to the praefecture
of an ala
of cavalry (C. I. L.
2394). The arrangement of Claudius whereby the praefecture of
came before the tribunate
of the legion (Suet. Cl. 25
quite transitory. The tribunes wore the gold ring [ANULUS
] of the
equites (App. Pun. 104
they were of senatorial birth, they were called laticlavii
(Suet. Aug. 38
, and the Inscriptions passim,
e.g. C. I. L.
10.3722, C. I. G.
3990, χειλίαρχος πλατύσημος
), those of equestrian
(Suet. Otho 10
). The three
positions--viz. praefectura cohortis,
and praefectura alae
--were the equestres militiae
often mentioned (equestribus militiis functus,
Plin. Ep. 7.25
; Veil. 2.111; 104, 3). In later
times one who had held these positions was called a militiis, a tribus militiis, a iiii.
ἀπὸ στρατειῶν ἱππικῶν, ἀπὸ τριῶν
&c. (Evidence in Marquardt,
ii.2 367, note
8.) In order to get the rank of eques
the tribunate was sometimes given for six
months or a little over it (semestris
Plin. Ep. 4.4
: cf. Juv.
; C. I. L.
3.101, 9.4886). Such
tribunes appear to have got a full year's salary, viz. 25,000
sesterces; see the Inscription of Torigny.
Under the Empire the tribunes still held a certain command in the
legion (Hor. Sat.
1.6, 48; Tac. Hist. 3.9
), but to all
intents and purposes they were subject to the legatus, who, as
we shall see, commanded both legions and auxiliary troops. Macer
in the Digest (49
) enumerates several of the duties of the tribunes:
viz. milites in castris continere, ad
(cf. Veg. 2.12), claves portarum suscipere, vigilias interdum
circumire, frumentationibus commilitonum interesse,
frumentum probare, mensorum fraudem coercere, delicta
secundum suae auctoritatis modum castigare, principiis
frequenter interesse, querellas commilitonum
(cf. Tac. Ann.
), valetudinarios inspicere.
Besides these duties, some of which devolved on the praefectus castrorum
during the early
Empire, the tribunes commanded on the march (Lampr. Alex.
50, 2) and in battle (Plin. Nat. 22.11
7, 1), took part in the council of war
(Caes. Gal. 5.28
), acted as spokesmen for the
soldiers (ib. 1.41, 8), kept the lists of the dead and living
[by putting the latter Θ
: cf. Pers. 4, 13;
) and Τ
) or V (vivit
) before the names on the roll (cf. Isidor.
1.24, 1; Marini, Atti de'
pp. 165, 609)], granted the
discharge to soldiers who had served out their time (Tac. Ann. 1.37
), also granted
leave of absence (Cod. Just. 12.35
(36), 13, 1), was answerable for the exercise and discipline of
the soldiers in the camp (Capit. Max.
10, 3). From the time of Claudius
there were nominal tribunes, who did no duty, but they had only
the title (Suet. Cl. 25
); not like
the tribuni vacantivi
15, 3), who appear to have got pay
for doing nothing. In Ammianus (15.3, 10; 18.2, 2) tribuni vacantes
are tribunes who had
served out their time, but in case of emergency were invested
with an extraordinary command (Godefroi ad C. Th.
On days of battle! (Caes. Gal.
), and when he
used to go towards Italy to look after Roman politics (ib. 5.1,
1; 25, 5), Caesar was in the habit of appointing special
) for the
legions, one for each. This commander was [p. 1.798]
retained by Augustus; and in imperial times, to
distinguish him from other legati, was styled legatus legionis,
or more strictly legatus Augusti legionis
in Indices to C. I. L.
passim, e. g. 8.7050, 7).
He was of senatorial rank, usually an ex-praetor (Tac. Hist. 1.48
; C. I.
10.6006; and the exception proving the rule in Tac. Ann. 2.36
). Previous to being
praetors, they could only hold the title of pro legato
). The important distinction between the
and the tribuni
was that the former had command
of the legion and
the annexed auxilia
(Tac. Hist. 1.57
C. I. L.
8.2582, 2637), while the tribuni
were strictly legionary
officers. The office of legatus
disappeared under Gallienus, its functions being undertaken by
the praefecti legionum,
who were no
longer senators (Aur. Vict. Caes.
3. The Praefectus Castrorum
Eph. Epigr. 1.81-95).
Passing over the reference to στρατοπεδαρχία
put into the mouth of Siccius
Dentatus by Dionysius, 10.36
(where it may possibly be a word common people
would use for a commander generally: cf. Lucian, de
21, 30), we only find the praefectus castrorum
in the Empire, from
Augustus to Severus. The locating of the soldiers in fixed camps
caused its institution. These officers were created by the
emperor (C. I. L.
10.4868), chiefly from among
(Orelli, 3509; Henz.
6758; C. I. L.
3.454, 2028), as being purely
military men of non-senatorial rank; and as such they differed
from the legati,
who were senators,
and from the more cultured youths who aspired to the militiae equestres.
were subject to the legatus
of the province (Tac. Ann. 14.37
), seem to have
held the chief post after
the legatus legionis,
though they were not
subject to him (Tac. Ann.
probably took his place if it was left vacant from any cause
(Tac. Hist. 2.29
). We find
be praefecti fabrum
and praefecti classis
(e.g. C. I.
10.4868). The name of the legion was not added to his
title during the first century; for each legion had not a camp,
a camp being often formed of several legions (Tac. Ann. 1.20
4.59), or even of vexillationes
of separate legions (D. C. 55.8
, who uses φρούραρχος
to express praefectus castrorum
). If several
legions were drawn together for a campaign, the united force had
only one praefectus castrorum
(Vell. 2.112); whereas if it was divided, it had two (Tac. Hist. 2.26
; cf. 89). But from the time of
Domitian (Suet. Dom. 7
) each camp
had only one legion, and so each legion had one praefectus castrorum:
this time it becomes customary for the praefectus castrorum
to add the name of his
legion to his title--e.g. C. I. L.
praef. Kastror. leg. xiii gem.:
shortened title praefectus legionis
becomes the usual one, and finally in the post-Severian time,
when the senate was being deprived of all its privileges, the
senatorial legati legionum
place to these praefecti.
where no senators were permitted to enter without special
permission (Tac. Ann. 2.59
Augustus's time, took the post held by the legatus legionis
elsewhere (Joseph. B.
6.4, 3); and in the other provinces, just as Augustus
sent his non-senatorial procurators to perform certain functions
beside the legati
of the provinces,
so in the army he appointed non-senatorial praefecti castrorum,
well-tried soldiers devoted
to his interest, to be a counterbalance to the legati
of the legions (Wilmanns, op. cit.
1.104). The duties of the
given by Vegetius, 2.10: “Totius positio valli et fossae
aestimatio pertinebat. Tabernacula vel casae militum cum
impedimentis omnibus nutu ipsius curabantur. Praeterea aegri
contubernales et medici, a quibus curabantur, expensae etiam
ad eius industriam pertinebant. Vehicula, sagmarii (‘pack-horses’) necnon etiam
ferramenta a quibus materies secatur vel caeditur, quibusque
aperiuntur fossae, contexitur vallum, aquaeductus, item
ligna vel stramina, arietes onagri ballistae ceteraque
genera tormentorum ne deessent aliquando procurabat.”
He kept discipline in the camp (Tac.
), and so had a certain jurisdiction, but
could not punish capitally (ib. 1.38). He was often sent with
detachments to make roads, bridges, or fortifications (ib.
12.38). During the battle he generally remained in the camp with
the reserve (Tac. Hist. 2.26
though he sometimes leads out the reserve forces to battle (ib.
13.39). Who performed his duty when he left the camp is not
certain; perhaps one of the tribunes (cf. Dig.
They first become important from the offensive order of battle
instituted by Camillus. They were 60 in number, and were
appointed by the consul, through the military tribunes, on
grounds of merit (Liv. 42.53
). The qualifications
required for a centurion are set forth in a weighty sentence of
): they are to be not so much daring and courters of
danger as men fit to command and steadfast, the courage of whose
souls is deep rather than superficial (βαθεῖς μᾶλλον ταῖς ψυχαῖς
); nor should they
engage before the battle is joined and commence the fray, but
when they are being conquered and hard-pressed they should stand
firm and be ready to die in defence of their post. They were
arranged partly according as they belonged to the triarii principes
partly according to the maniple they
were in within these ranks (thus secundus
); partly again according as
they commanded the first or the second century of the maniple
); but there does not seem to have been
any difference of rank between these latter. It is to be noticed
that the triarii
5.89), and every ordo,
whether in the sense of rank or centurion (see below), was
thus primipili centurio
(Caes. Gal. 1.46
: cf. primi ordinis centurio,
Tac. Ann. 1.29
), primum pilum ducere
(ib. 5.33), primos pilos ademit
(Suet. Cal. 44
); and again in the
sense of centurion, octavus pilus
(C. I. L.
5.7004) and the common
Thus the lowest
centurion was called decimus ordo
= centurion (cf.
notice that it was not thought necessary to add prior
There cannot have been any regular
advancement till the institution
of the standing army; but this [p. 1.799]
3454) developed itself during the Empire. On the introduction of
the arrangement by cohorts, the meaning of the three
divisions--hastati, principes, and
--disappeared, but the names were retained to
signify the rank of the centurions, with the number of the
cohort usually added. What exactly was the nature of that rank?
There are two main theories: (1) either Marquardt's view, that
the first thirty centurions of the legions are priores
(the first ten pill,
the second principes,
the third triarii
) and the second thirty posteriores;
or (at least for the period of the
manipular arrangement) A. Müller's view (Die
Rangordnung und das Avancement der Centurionen der
38.136-148), that the first ten
centurions are the pili priores,
the next ten pili posteriores,
next principes priores,
(2) The theory of Mommsen (Eph. Epigr.
note 1) and that of A. Müller for the post-Marian
organisation, that the rank of the centurion was fixed by the
number of the cohort: thus the primus
was second in the legion, the primus hastatus
third, the primus posterior
fourth, and so on; the
centurion of the first cohort ranking before those of the
second, those of the second before those of the third, and so
on. But first let us see who the primi
were, who so often appear (Caes. Gal. 6.7
); for it is in
discussing these that Marquardt argues for his view of the rank
of the centurions.
Marquardt says the primi ordines
the ten priores pili;
for (1) the
cohort surely must have had a commander, viz. the first of its
six centurions, and these leaders of the cohorts must have held
a position of distinction--an à
argument which begs the question; and besides
there were no commanders of the cohorts as such recognised in
the legions, the only commanding officers being tribunes and
centurions. (2) It is impossible to suppose that a centurion who
had commanded a maniple or a cohort should have to sink to
command a simple century, as must have been the case in (say)
the step from primus hastatus prior to
decimus princeps posterior.
To which further à priori
argument we reply
that it is just as impossible that the second centurion of the
first legion--which had, at least after Hadrian's time, a double
number of men, had the charge of the eagle and a definite
position of honour in the camp--should rank only twenty-first in
the legion. (3) Vegetius (2.21) says that soldiers are promoted
“ita ut ex prima cohorte ad gradum quempiam promotus
vadat ad decimam cohortem et rursus ab ea crescentibus
stipendiis cum maiore gradu per alias recurrat ad
primam.” But this only means that a common soldier of the
first cohort, if advanced to be a centurion, begins at the
bottom of the centurions of the tenth cohort and works his way
up. The other view, that of Mommsen (op.
240), sees in the primi
the three chief centurions of the first
cohort, viz. the primus pilus, primus
and primus hastatus
--at least for the time subsequent to
Hadrian, and it is certain that they were a definite class then,
as may be seen from Hadrian's speech to the army at Lambaesis
(C. I. L.
8.2532), “primi ordines et
centuriones agiles et fortes more suo fuerunt,” and
p. 176), “legiones cum
signis et aquila et primis ordinibus et tribunis
deducebantur.” They appear to have been also called
5.92, 8275, 7.404; Capitol. Alb.
But in classical times Mommsen considers that the primi ordines
were no definite class,
but simply the most distinguished centurions ( “qui loco
et virtute prae ceteris eminerent” ), just as the
and inferiores ordines
are opposed in Caesar
(Caes. Gal. 6.40
1.46, 4). A
similar view of the primi ordines
is held by H. Bruncke (Die Rangordnung der
1884), who considers that the only
difference in rank among the centurions was between these
or superiores ordines
and the rest the inferiores ordines
(Caes. ll. cc.
Now the reason for this view of Mommsen's will be further seen by
reverting to the original question of the rank of the
centurions. Suppose we hold with Marquardt, how are we to
explain Caes. B.C.
1.46, 4: “Q. Fulginius
ex primo hastato legionis xiv qui propter eximiam virtutem
ex inferioribus ordinibus in eum locum pervenerat” ?
He would only have been 21st in the legion. Again, what could
3.53, 5) mean by “Scaeva
centurio quem Caesar ab octavis ordinibus ad primipilum se
traducere pronuntiavit” ? On Marquardt's theory those
would have been of too
varied rank (8th, 18th, 28th) to be explicit; whereas it
doubtless means from the eighth cohort to the first. Further,
Mommsen's view will explain Vegetius, 2.8: “Vetus
consuetudo tenuit ut ex primo principe legionis promoveretur
centurio primipili;” cf. Henzen, 6747, “P.
Aelius Marcellus . . . astatus et princeps et primipilus
legionis vii geminae piae felicis.” Lastly, the great
number of inscriptions marking the primi
are additional proofs of the distinction of
these positions. It is to be noticed that whereas in these three
first centurions the cohort is seldom (Caes. B.C.
3.64, 4) added, it is universal in the centurions from the
fourth on (see Mommsen's list, op. cit.
p. 231 ff.). Mommsen considers a similar arrangement subsisted
even before the introduction of the arrangement by cohorts: for
the centurions who are mostly mentioned in this age besides the
are the primus
and primus hastatus
(ib. 27.14, 8),
and why should these latter, the 11th and 21st in the legion on
Marquardt's theory, be mentioned?--an argument which tells still
more against A. Müiller's view that, during the time of
the manipular arrangement, the first ten centurions are the
the next ten the
and so on;
for, according to this view, the primus
would be 21st, and the primus hastatus
41st, in the legion.
The following are a sufficient number taken from Mommsen's list
4.231-238) to show his
arrangement of the order of the centurions.
- 1. Primus pilus. The term triarius
prior is an invention of Vegetius, 2.8. The
abbreviation P. P. is often found in Inscriptions, e.g.
P.P. bis iterum (C. I.
L. 5.867, 6.1637). This means that they held the
primipilatus twice: so
Tullius in Liv. 7.13, 1, who septimum primum pilum ducebat, was seven
times primipilus (cf. Liv. xlii. [p. 1.800]34, 12). Occasionally the second primipilatus was taken after one
of the militiae equestres had
been held, so that on discharge he might get the honours
of a primipilaris (Mommsen
on (C. I. L. 5.867).
- 2. Primae cohortis princeps prior (Caes.
B.C. 3.64, 4). Also called princeps pretorii in C.
I. L. 3.5293, 2917; Henzen, 6767 (see
Mommsen on 3.830), or simply princeps (ib. 8.2841, and passim). As he had considerable duties in
seeing after the camp (Veg. 2.8), he had an adjutor (Wilm. 1556), librarius and optio (Henz. 6778). The latter is
sometimes called optio pretorii
- 3. Hastatus primus (Caes. B.C. 1.46, 4;
C. I. L. 2.4147) or simply hastatus (ib. 8.2825).
- 4. Cohorte i princeps posterior (ib. 2883).
- 5. Cohorte i hastatus posterior (ib.).
- 7. Cohorte ii princeps prior (Eph.
Epigr. ii. p. 290).
- 8. Cohorte ii hastatus prior (ib. p. 287).
- 10. Cohorte ii princeps posterior (C. I.
- 12. Cohorte iii pilus prior (Eph.
Epigr. v. p. 2).
- 13. Princeps tertius = cohorte iii princeps prior
(C. I. L. 9.2770).
- 17. Cohorte iii hastatus posterior (ib. 3.1480).
- 21. Cohorte iv pilus posterior (ib. 6.3404).
- 28. Cohorte v princeps posterior (ib. 3.102).
- 42. Octavus pilus prior=Cohorte viii pilus prior (ib.
- 43. Octavus princeps (Cic.
ad Brut. 1.8, 2).
- 50. Cohorte viiii hastatus prior (C. I.
- 53. Cohorte viiii hastatus posterior (ib.
All centurions carried the vitis,
with which to inflict punishment on refractory soldiers (Plin. Nat. 14.19
), and which
was a synonym for the centurionship (Juv.
). In the legion the primipilus
was held in especial honour. He took part
in the council of war (Plb. 6.24
). In republican times, and for
the most part during the Empire, this was the last position in
an ordinary soldier's career. When they had finished (consummaverunt,
Suet. Cal. 44
their service, they retired into private life, and were then
with large property repaired to municipal towns, where they
became great local magnates (Cic. Fin.
1.3, 8; Hor. Sat.
1.6, 72). For inscriptions of such centurions, see Karbe,
De centurionibus Romanis quaestiones
1880, p. 338. They often made sufficient
money to enable them to buy equestrian rank for themselves
(Orelli, 3049) or for their sons (C. I. G.
. If they wished to continue in the service, they were
employed in important military duties (Tac. Ann. 2.11
1.87, 4.15), sometimes as praefecti castrorum
(see above, p. 798
) or praefecti cohortium
(Tac. Ann. 1.20
): sometimes, too, they got positions
in the civil service (Suet. Cal.
; C. I. L.
5.698). But in imperial
times the primipilatus
first step in the equestrian career, leading to the tribunate of
the cohorts of the city soldiery, i.e. vigiles, urbanae, praetoriae
occasionally to the tribunate of the legions (ib. 10.4868), and
then to procuratorships (ib. 5.867), and even to the praefecture
of the praetorians, e. g. Justus Catonius (Tac. Ann. 1.29
; D. C. 60.18
); cf. Hirschfeld,
1.219-239, 247. Often
the honorary title of centurion was given to young men of
position by grant of the emperor (Juv.
; Suet. Gramm.
24; D. C. 52.25
), who, after filling the three posts of the equestrian
career--viz. praefectura cohortis, tribunatus
legionis, praefectura alae
(Wilm. 1259 b; Stat.
1, 94)--retired from the service
with the title a mititiis
(see above, p.
). Both classes of aspirants,
the ordinary centurions and the honorary ones, were called
(C. I. L.
6.2485; Wilm. 1602). It is to be noticed that sometimes a young
man of rank resigned that rank (intermissus
became a centurion in hopes of arriving at the lucrative and
honoured positions, tribuneships and procuratorships, of the militia equestris
--which hopes were not
always fulfilled. (C. I. L.
In republican times and in the early Empire the number of
centurions in the legion was 60 (Gel.
; Tac. Ann. 1.32
). But after
Hadrian's time it was 59 though the first cohort had double the
number of men, yet it had only five centurions (Veg. 2.8,
confirmed by C. I. L.
8.2555), while all the
other cohorts had six. And in the list given above it will be
seen that there is no pilus
in the first cohort. If 64 optiones
occur in C. I.
8.2554, we must suppose that the adjutores,
who as well as the optiones
belonged to the centurions of the first
cohort, are reckoned along with the optiones.
In the first cohort, according to Vegetius
2.8 properly corrected, the primipilus
commanded 400, the princeps
the hastatus primus
and princeps posterior
150 each, and the
The Inferior Officers (principales).
For the title principales,
see Veg. 2.7;
,4; C. I. L.
4.524. A most exhaustive treatise on
these officers is that of P. Caver, De muneribus militaribus
in Eph. Epigr.
Mommsen (Eph. Epigr.
4.532) divides the principales
into two classes: (1) those
belonging to a corps, and the commander under which these serve is
never mentioned; (2) those belonging to a higher officer, and their
title was not fully specified unless they had the name of the
officer attached. This was partly because they were special
attendants on certain officers (e. g. the stratores
), partly because their rank was determined
by the officer whose name they added, this especially in the case of
classification, we shall treat of the different principales
of each class.
I. The Principales belonging to a corps.
1. The Standard-bearers.
- a. vexillarius, Among the
vigiles each century
had a vexillarius ( =
vexillifer), Orelli, 3480.
- b. Among the praetorians each
century had a signifer
(C. I. L. 2.2610)--so that we may
assume that the signifer
was a higher functionary than the vexillarius. As each cohort had its
signa [SIGNA], in cases [p. 1.801]where a signifer of a cohort is mentioned, e. g.
(ib. 5.4371), it cannot be decided whether they
performed this function in a century or a cohort.
- c. Among the urbanae
cohortes, just as among the praetorians, there
were two kinds of signiferi, one belonging to the century, the
other to the cohort. Mommsen thinks that the signifer of the first century
was the signifer of the
cohort (cf. Caes. Gal.
2.25). That Marquardt is quite wrong in supposing
That the standard-bearer of the first cohort among the
praetorians and the first cohort of the vigiles was
called aquilifer, while the
standard bearer of the century was signifer, is shown by the correct
interpretation of “AQ praet. urbis” (ib.
6.2880) being a
quaestionibus. Nor had the first cohort of the
vigiles an aquilifer, as Marini
and Marquardt (l.c.) assume on
the strength of 6.1056: “AQ. Julius Julianus
centuria Ingenui, AQ. Sittius Chryseros centuria
Juvenis;” for (1) there is no sure evidence
of an eagle outside the legions, (2) there would be two
or more aquiliferi in one cohort, which is quite
- d. Among the auxiliary cohorts
a few vexillarii are found
(ib. 3.3261), but it cannot be proved that they were vexilliferi. Also a few signiferi (Eph.
Epigr. 3.106); and with regard to them it cannot
be decided whether or not there were signiferi of other divisions than the
cohort, though it is probable that each century had its
- e. Among the equites
singulares each turma had a signifer (ib. 6.3304).
- f. Among the equites,
each turma had a signifer (ib. 8.2094), also each
ala (ib. 3.6274), just
as the centuries and the cohorts. And as in their case,
we cannot decide whether the signiferi of the alae were the signiferi of the first cohorts or not.
appear (ib. 3.4384), perhaps by an inaccuracy of
language, the cause of which possibly may have been that
the standard-bearers of the equites
legionarii were called vexillarii to distinguish them from the
signiferi of the
cohorts and centuries--as may be inferred from 3.4061.
- g. The numeri had
- h. As to the legions there is nothing in the
inscriptions to decide definitely whether the separate
cohorts and centuries had signiferi or not. The signiferi are said to belong to the
legions. Wherever vexillarii
legionum occur, we can never be sure that they
are vexilliferi. Most probably,
as was the case with the praetorians and the auxiliary
cohorts, the standard-bearers of the legions were not
called vexillarii, either
under the Empire or indeed at any time, for σημαιοφόρους in Plb. 6.24, 6=signiferos.
From Veg. 2.20 we may infer that, besides the ten signiferi cohortiium, there were
no other in the legions.
As to Aquiliferi,
there was one for each
legion (C. I. L.
2.266). We have shown that there
were no aquiliferi
among the praetorians
and the vigiles.
And as to
“qui imperatorum imagines ferunt” (Veg. 2.7), there
was probably one in each legion (8.2935) and in each auxiliary
2. The Trumpeters
[see BUCINA, CORNU, TUBA]--Touching
these, Vegetius 2.22 says: “Ergo quoties ad aliquod opus
exituri sunt soli milites tubicines
canunt: quoties movenda sunt signa, cornicines
canunt: quoties autem pugnatur, et tubicines et cornicines
appellatur quod bucinatores
cornu dicunt. Hoc insigne videtur imperii, quia classicum
canitur imperatore praesente vel cum in militem capitaliter
animadvertitur.” The watches (vigiliae
) were signalled by the cornicen.
The term aeneator
is probably a generic one, as Suet. Jul. 32
says that his
was taken from him, though
Festus (p. 20) identifies him with the cornicen.
The legionaries and auxiliaries, of
course, had trumpeters. Of the urban soldiery, the praetorians
had tubicines, cornicines,
(6.2570, 2379, 2545), the
in the cohortes urbanae
trumpeter which appears is one tubicen
(6.2404). The lituus,
we are told
(Ascon. in Hor. Carm.
), was the trumpet of the cavalry and the tuba
of the infantry, yet we find the
and a tubicen
(6.3176, 3179). The inscription
of Orelli, 3519, which mentions a liticen
of a legion, is Ligorian.
“qui tesseras per contubernia militum
” (Veg. 2.7), were one in each century, as is
proved principally by the latercula
(6.1056). They also
appear among the praetorians (6.2379 b), cohortes urbanae
(9.1617), legions (6.2672),
auxiliary cohorts (3.5046).
As the curatores fisci
in the praetorian (6.2375, 6, 27) and urban cohorts (8.4874), we
may perhaps infer that the rest of the parts of the Roman army
had not fisci.
find among the equites singulares
(6.225), auxiliary cavalry (8.4510), auxiliary infantry
(3.6025), are not to be explained as administrators of the
military money. They are rather extraordinary commanders (cf.
Mommsen in Archäol. Zeitung,
126), just as the commanders of veterans were in extraordinary
cases called curatores
They appear very often in the legions (e. g. 3.4275); also
frequently in the auxiliary cavalry (3.5655), but still more
frequently among the equites
(6.3177, 225, 228). The mysterious armatura
which sometimes occurs (e. g.
8.2569 a, 17) is not to be explained with Borghesi as
as miles armatura
occurs in 6.2699. Mommsen
in a letter to Hübner, published in the Jahrbuch
des Vereins für Alterthumsfreunde im
68, p. 53, explains it as a
thoroughly-drilled soldier ( “qui a campidoctore omni arte
bellandi imbutus fuerit” ). The riding school (basilica equestris
) had also a custos
They seem to have belonged to the cohort (6.533), and are found
in all kinds of corps, the frumentarii
where he is a centurion (6.228),
so called because “chosen” by the decurion or
centurion as his assistant in private matters (rerum privatarum ministrum,
184; Varro, L. L.
5.81), also as his substitute
in case of sickness or accident (Veg. 2.7). With regard to the
Mommsen's view appears
right (Eph. Epigr.
4.449), that there were two
classes of them, one belonging to the centuries and superior in
rank, the other in a manner supernumerary and outside the
centuries, [p. 1.802]
taking care of the navalia.
(Brambach, 1301), carcer, acta
(C. I. L.
(6.175). Thus in C.
alone is distinguished from optio
of certain functions. We find optiones
belonging to the centuries in the legions
(3.3530), praetorians (6.2447), cohortes
(10.3880). This view is better than that of
Caver, who supposes the optiones
the special departments were optiones
of the centuries, who were freed from all
functions as such. In the latercula
6.1056-1058), Kellermann, Henzen (6791), Wilmanns
(1499), Marquardt (2.540) supply “optionem a(rcarii),
optionem ca(rceris), optionem ba(lnearii), optionem
c(ohortis), optionem co[h(ortis)] v.” But these
functions are not elsewhere mentioned; optio
is expressed in other parts of the latercula
and it is not at
all plain what an optio cohortis
In C. I. L.
10.135 the optio
was that tribune of the
soldiers who was in command of five vexillationes,
which were sent on some expedition with
their own tribunes, these latter probably electing
the tribune in question to the chief command:
cf. optio signiferorum
appear first in the Civil War (Caes. Bell. Hisp.
13; Bell. Afr.
37). During the Empire there were
ten in each legion (C. I. L.
They were often marked as belonging to cohorts (e. g. 6.2453),
though in 5.2832, 5071 we find speculatores
of centuries. They used to carry
despatches (Tac. Hist. 2.73
cf. Liv. 31.24
), and sometimes act as executioners (Seneca,
1.18, 4; St. Mark
6.27). They were numerous in the praetorian cohorts, and we find
them in Tacitus (Tac. Hist.
) forming a
separate corps, with separate officers tesserarius, optio
(ib. 1.25), &c., and
having the special function of acting as body-guard to the
emperor (Suet. Cl. 25
). The ninth
Diploma (of Vespasian) separates (C. I. L.
p. 853) the praetorian speculatores
from the other praetorian cohorts: and such was often the case,
but not so after the time of Vespasian, when they were ingrafted
among the praetorians. None of the inscriptions which show that
were allocated to
the centuries and cohorts can be proved as old as Vespasian. The
3.5223) probably belonged to the praetorians.
of the Vigiles
) were prison-warders, who generally held
also the functions of some other kind of principalis,
(9.1617). There was also a clerk attached to
the prison a commentariis
(strangely omitted by both Marquardt and Caver) are mentioned
with other principales
8.2568, 2569, 2618, 2866; 3.1190. What their
function was we cannot say for certain. Mommsen (Eph.
4.532, note 2) supposes that they were so
called from a white robe they were in certain ceremonies
(compare the white-robed priests of Jupiter Dolichenus, 6.406,
409). They appear to have been selected for their strength and
stature (Chron. Pasch.
ad ann. 243, 251).
(C. I. L.
8.2586, 57) and victimarius
Under this head may come the architectus
(Orelli, 3489; C. I. L.
8.2850), and the librator
aqueducts, such as Nonius Datus at Saldae, who tells us (ib.
8.2728 = Wilmanns, 785) how with the help of the classici milites
and provincial soldiers
), perhaps. Raeti, he cut a
tunnel through a mountain, from both ends meeting exactly in the
middle (cf. Mommsen in Arch. Zeitung,
1871, p. 5.
Very similar duties to those of the librator
were performed by the canicularius
(Henzen, 6785) and the aquilex
). This same
section of the Digest mentions as attached to the army
coppersmiths, iron-smiths, stone-cutters, roof-builders
wood-cutters, charcoal-burners; makers of catapults, helmets,
bows, arrows, javelins, trumpets, horns, chariots:, workers in
leather and in lead. There were also the metatores,
who measured out the camp (Cic. Phil. 11.5
), different from the mensores,
who distributed corn in the
legions (C. I. L.
8.2857) and praetorian cohorts
(Henz. 6820; cf. Lyd. de Magistr.
does appear as a
land-measurer in C. I. L.
3.586, he does not
belong to the legions.
The Army-doctors (Dig. 4
), who ranked among the principales
4.524), were an institution of the Empire. Under the Republic
the chief officers. used to bring their private physicians with
them on campaign (Plut. Cat. Mi.
; Suet. Aug. 11
these used probably to attend what few wounded soldiers were
lucky or unlucky enough to obtain their treatment (cf. Cic. Tusc. 2.16
38); but we hear that often more soldiers died. of their wounds
than fell in battle (Liv. 9.32
). But as early in the Empire as
Augustus and the regular organisation of the standing army
(Vell. 2.14; Tac. Ann. 1.65
attention began to be paid to the medical department. Every
division had its medicus.
the medicus legionis,
several bearing that. title, in each legion, e. g. in Legion
iii. Aug. (C. I. L.
8.2872, 2874, 2951); each
praetorian cohort (Grut. 66, 1) had them, as had the urban.
cohorts and those of the vigiles, perhaps four in each cohort
(C. I. L.
6.1058, p. 201), the equites
(Orelli, 1576), cohorts of the
auxiliary troops (ib. 3507; C. I. L.
on garrison duty
4.530), &c. The doctors
), and sometimes duplicarii
(i.e. getting double pay), especially in
the fleet (C. I. L.
10.3443). During the first
six centuries of the city there were no professional doctors at
Rome (Plin. Nat. 29.12
after Caesar gave citizenship to all professional physicians
(Suet. Jul. 42
), the medical
art came to be held in respect by the Romans; and the recognised
physicians of the legions, praetorians, and city cohorts were
citizens. Doubtless, however, many, of their assistants were
freedmen and slaves, and in the cohorts of the vigiles
and auxiliaries freedmen and
foreigners may have been the authorised physicians. Marquardt
says that the assistants of the regular physicians are those
designated as medici ordinarii
(3.4279, 5959); but they are rather, as Mommsen (Eph.
4.530, note 3) shows, those who served in
in contradistinction to
those who served in the legions.
The hospital of the garrison was called valetudinarium:
for three legions there was one; for
five or six, several (Hyg. § § 35 and 4). It
was technically under the superintendence of the praefectus castrorum
(Veg. 2.10) or a
the real officer was the optio
who often occurs (C. I. L.
8.2563, 9.1617), even in Rome (6.175). He had a number of male
nurses under him (Dig. 50
). There was
also an infirmary for horses and mules (veterinarium,
Hyg. § 4) and veterinary
surgeons to attend to them (C. I. L.
freedman; C. I. G.
). On the whole of this interesting subject, see
René Brian, L'assistance médicale
chez les Romains,
par divers Savants à l'Académie des
série, t. viii., and Droysen in the Deutsche
II. The Principales belonging to an officer.
Though not all clerks (e.g. actarius
appear as belonging to an officer, yet as the majority do, it
will be convenient to treat them all under this head. Among the
various kinds of clerks are:
- a, b. Librarii (in
Inscriptions, Lib. or
Libr.), who kept the accounts
(rationes pecuniae, frumenti,
hordei, &c.: cf. Veg. 2.7),
differing herein from (b）
entered the daily proceedings in journals. Several
inscriptions of librarii
have IM prefixed to the name (C. I. L.
6.3395). This means immunis
(see below, p. 804 b); and
such were the librarii qui docere
possint, those horreorum, depositorum (of money
deposited by the soldiers), caducorum (of the property of intestate and
heirless soldier): cf. Dig. 50,
6, 7. The librarii do
not mark the department of business to which they are
assigned, but the officer under which they serve or the
division of the army to which they belong. Thus we have
librarii of the
provincial governor (C. I. L. 3.5435), of
the legate of the legion (ib. 3538), of the tribune of
the praetorian cohorts (6.2632), of the centurions
(Henzen, 6778); also of the legions (6.3395, and often),
vigiles (ib. 221),
&c. We find commentarienses belonging to the provincial
governor (comm. cos. 3.2015) and
to the legatus and tribunus legionis (8.2586). The
comm. legionis is the same
as the comm. legati (2.4156).
- c. A notarius, who was
perhaps a shorthand writer, appears in 8.2755.
- d. Exceptores,
“qui verba dictata celeriter accipiebant,”
belonged to the praef. praet. (Murat. 864, 3), to the
provincial preses (6.2997), to
the praef. and trib. of the vigiles (6.1058).
- e. Codicillarii, account keepers, only
appear in the vigiles
- f. The functions of the tabularii are uncertain, though it is certain
that the tabularium
castrense contained the
books and accounts of the camp (Marini, Atti, p. 499).
- g. Nor is it known who the capsarii were, who are mentioned with the
librarii in 8.2553, and
like them were immunes
- h. The actarii not only made
up accounts (Veg. 2.19), but also looked after the
procuring and distribution of the corn: cf. Aur. Vict.
Caes. 33, who in this capacity gives
them very bad characters. They must be held to have had
the same functions as the actores
bonorum privatorum et publioorum, harsh though
it is to etymologically connect actarii with actor rather than acta. We find actarii
legionis (C. I. L. 3.4232),
- i. The exacti had also to
look after the acta
militaria, and did not differ essentially from
the commentarienses. He was
ex actis, and the word
is formed like aborigines. We
find exacti consularium
(Boissieu, Inscr. de Lyon, p. 253).
- j. The arcarius (8.3289)
and the dispensator (3288)
were slaves, appointed to guard and dispense actual
cash. There were several slaves among the clerks of the
camp (cf. familia
The functionary called ab indicibus
(Orelli, 3464; C. I. L.
6.3414) was not a
soldier, as the duty only attached to him after discharge from
These are torturers (Cod. Theod.
vi. p. 348).
Marquardt indeed urges (ii.2 552, note 1)
that though such might belong to the vigiles,
such cannot belong to the legions, the
praetorians (C. I. L.
6.2755), and the cohortes urbanae
(ib. 2880); for Roman
citizens could not be put to the torture. He supposes them to be
investigators concerning crimes. But Mommsen replies
4.421) that Quaestionarii
are only found with those legati
who held a province, and so
cannot be considered to have held investigations on soldiers
only, not to mention the fact that there were many soldiers not
Roman citizens. There were at least five quaestionarii
in the legion (C. I. L.
8.2751; 2586, 45).
so called from the adornment (corniculum,
) on their helmets . They were adjutants belonging to
each large division of troops. As the praef.
had no military authority (Mommsen,
neither had he a cornicularius.
During the Republic one belonged to the tribunus militum
). Under the
Empire we find one belonging to the legatus
(C. I. L.
3.887) and the
(ib. 5974). If
it is signified that there is one
cornicularius in each legion (ib. 4452), the cornicularius legati
is meant; if two are
mentioned, that of the tribune is included. The arrangement of
similar (cf. 8.2587). Provincial governors probably had two
their office is called officium
(ib. 3543). Similarly they
belonged to praefecti
(1057, 4, 2), annonae
(11.20)--for the officia annonaria
were among the first civil departments to assume a military
(3.6023 a), to
the subpraefecti vigilum
the tribunes of the praetorians. (2440), urban cohorts (2869),
(2984);, and they also
appear in the auxiliary cohorts. (Orelli, 4979). We find an
(3.2052; C. I. G.
4453): probably he is the same
as the subcornicularius
an adjutant who appears only among the soldiery of the city,
praetorians (C. I. L.
6.2659), urban cohorts (ib.
2931), and. vigiles
1056-1058). The inscriptions which mention secutores
in the legions are uncertain
4.406). The adjutor tribuni
only appears among the vigiles
(C. I. L.
so called, says Lydus (de Mag.
3.7), because they rode one horse. In
inscriptions the abbreviation for their title is sometimes
(e.g.) Sing. Cons.,
sometimes S. C. (C. I.
3.5938; 7.723). They were orderlies belonging to
different officers, to the praef. praet.
(6.2634), trib. praet.
(1056, 3, 1),
provincial governor (3.5938). They were inferior to the beneficiarii
(10.410). There were
as well as
9393). The equites
appear to have performed
for the legati
of the provinces and
for the praefects and tribunes of the praetorians the same
functions which the praetorians did for their leader;
and equites singulares
formed a corps
separate from the main body. The secutores
probably did not differ in function from
but were inferior
in rank; hence there are no secutores
of the praesides,
or of the praefecti
while both secutores
are found belonging to the tribuni praetorianorum,
who held a
middle position (Mommsen in Eph. Epigr.
404). Cf. Lange, Hist. Mutat.
to be carefully distinguished from statores
(see above, p. 794 b
), belonged only to very high officials, whom they
assisted to mount on horseback (Spart. Carac.
e. g. to the emperor (ib.), the governors of imperial provinces
(C. I. L.
2.4114; 3.4317, 4836), procurators
of provinces (Wilm. 1283), the praef.
(6.3408); but not to the proconsuls of senatorial
provinces (Dig. 1
). Marquardt (ii.2 548) says they
were generally either centurions or decurions: but they are
often simply called milites,
it probable that the purchase of horses (Ammian. 29.3, 5
be assigned to centurions. Again, in Wilm. 1293, we have a
advanced to the
position of a decurio.
The fact is
retained the name and
office, which he thought an honour, even when advanced to higher
positions in the army. That the function of strator
was one held in estimation may be proved
from the fact that it is found alone, and not united to any
other military position (e. g. 8.2792). He seems to have been
generally a legionary soldier, though we find one from the
were nominees of the higher officers (Liv.
; Tac. Hist. 1.25
), who varied in
number according to the rank of the officer; e. g. the imperial
legate of Numidia had thirty, a tribunis
had five. They were used for most varied
services, frequently on police duty (C. I. L.
3.3412; Tert. de Fuga,
legati Aug. pro praetore
used to send their
stations (3.3949): cf. Eph. Epigr.
4.529. We find
belonging to the
provincial governors, the legatus
the tribunes of the legions and of the three
departments of the city soldiery, the praefects of the
praetorians and of the vigiles, the imperial procurators, but
not of the praefectus urbi,
no military authority (Mommsen, Staatsr.
ii.2 1020; so pr.
in C. I. L.
9.1617). Evidence for this list in Eph. Epigr.
4.379 ff. Also there were beneficiarii
of the tribunes of the equites singulares
(6.3285) and of the
auxiliary cohorts (5.898). Mommsen holds (Eph.
4.394, note 1) that it was only the tribuni laticlavii
who had beneficiarii,
because they were engaged in civil
administration, and not merely in military command.
The soldier who had fulfilled all duties in the construction of
the camp, the watch, and the field was called munifex
(Festus, p. 33). He who was freed from
these duties was called immunis.
list of such privileged soldiers is given in Dig. 50
, which comprise nearly all the principales.
But some of the principales
are called immunes
simply. They got their privileges from their
commander, but it is hard to see how they differed from the
We find thus
III. On the Promotion of the Principales.
The full arguing out of this difficult question would require too
much space to be attempted here. However, we have attempted to draw
up a list in order of rank, beginning from the lowest; and in doing
so have consulted most of the inscriptions bearing on the question,
the most important of which are Wilmanns, 1596, 1596 a, 1598, 1617;
Orelli, 3176, 3480, 3464; C. I. L.
(C. I. L. 10.410).
(C. I. L. 11.20).
||Evocatus Augusti (Wilm.
On this we have to remark (1) that in many of the above inscriptions
one or more steps are omitted: e. g. in Wilm. 1596 a there is a
sudden transition from 6 to 10. Such gaps may possibly be due to
omissions on the part of the stonecutter, but, as is more likely,
are evidence of special advancement owing to distinguished merit.
Thus in C. I. L.
5.898 a beneficiarius tribuni
is made a signifer,
obviously from merit, as he is at the same
time transferred from a cohort to a legion. Compare optiones
(11.19, 5.7160) or centurions (5.7004, 6.215), a
becoming a centurion
(8.217), &c. (2.) For the omissions of optio valetudinarii, optio carceris, optio ab actis
(8.4874), which appear in 9.1617, see the section on optiones
above (p. 801 b
). (3.) Where exactly the librarius
(cf. 8.217) and the librator
6.2545) come is uncertain, but they certainly come before the
as did also the
(cf. 11.19, 5.7004)
before the optio,
and the custos armorum
before the signifer
(8.2094). (4.) A signifer
sometimes becomes aquilifer,
and then curator
(5.3375). (5.) The codicillarius tribuni
mentioned by Marquardt in his
list (ii.2 557) occurs only in the vigiles,
so is not given in this list. It
should take the lowest rank below the secutor;
for in 6.1057 (A.D. 205) three names of codicillarii
Festus, who in 6.1058 (A.D. 210) are secutores
Cf. W. Soltau, Ueber Entstehung und Zusammensetzung der
1880, p. 335
In the time of the citizen army the levy took place yearly thus.
The consuls (Plb. 6.19
by edict a definite day on which the citizens liable to service
were to assemble at the Capitol (Liv.
), in later times at
the Villa Publica in the Campus Martius (Varro, R.
3.2), if the latter was not the place of the regular
arrangement in the ranks as opposed to the levy on the Capitol.
Sometimes recruiting officers (conquisitores
) were used throughout the districts of
Italy (Liv. 23.32
), for the most part but not
necessarily in times of great danger. After the Lex Plautia
Papiria (89 B.C.), when all Italy was liable to legionary
service, recruiting by conquisitores
became constant. They were often most
dishonest, and used to sell vacationes
; Auct. Bell. Alex.
56, 4). Whether the
levy was in Rome or by conquisitores
did not make any difference in the
legal position of the soldiers--both kinds were legitimi milites.
The tribunes were first assigned as a nucleus to form the four
legions in the order of their election (Plb.
ff.): the four
junior tribunes first elected and two senior tribunes first
elected being assigned to the first legion; the three juniors
and three seniors next elected to the second; the next four
juniors and two seniors to the third, and the last three juniors
and three seniors to the fourth. A tribe was then chosen by lot;
the names of four of its members, generally those with lucky
names (Festus, p. 137, 15; Cic.
de Div. 1.4. 5
, 102), called out,
sometimes at random, sometimes by lot (V.
; App. Hisp. 49
). These, answering
to their names (citati ad nomina
), were chosen by the tribunes, one for each of the
four legions; then four more (the tribunes of the second legion
now having the first choice), and so on. A lot was then cast for
the second tribe, and the same procedure followed; and so on
till the legion was completed. Most probably all the tribes did
not contribute an equal
quota, for if
they did it is hard to see the point of the lot; yet each tribe
did contribute a quota, as may be proved from the exception in
. Volunteers (qui voluntate nomina
) were frequent. Their legal position in the service
differed in no respect from that of those who served under
compulsion. The cavalry, in early times, were chosen after the
infantry, as the census of the centuriae
was held after that of the tribes (Liv. 29.37
); but in Polybius's time (6.20, 9) the cavalry were
picked first from the equestrian list of the last census and 300
appointed to each legion.
If those bound to serve did not answer to their names, they
sometimes had their goods confiscated (V.
), or were
scourged or imprisoned (Liv. 7.4
), or even in old times sold into
slavery (Dig. 49
). Certain excuses were allowed: e. g. holding a
magistracy or priesthood (Plut. Camill.
absence on state-service (Liv.
remission of service for distinguished bravery (ib. 20, 2),
physical incapacity (these were called causarii,
). The inquiry into the validity of the excuses was
conducted by the consul (Liv. 3.69
The levy being completed, the consuls administered the oath
(sacramento milites rogare
). One soldier stood out
and repeated the oath (sacramentum
or sacramento dicere
) that he would
obey orders and execute the commands of the officer to the best
of his ability (Plb. 6.21
); after that each soldier was called
out separately and said idem in me
(Festus, p. 224 M.). The obligation of the oath lasted till the
next campaign, a new oath being required for the new general
; Cic. Off.
, 36). Without an oath it was unlawful to fight
with the enemy (Cic.
Off. 1.1. 1
, 37), and those who did so
were considered bandits (Liv. 8.34
). Desertion was a nefas
35) and deserved death (Dionys. A.
). From the time of Marius the oath was taken
once for all for the whole period of service (App. BC 5.128
), and was to the effect
“pro republica se esse facturos nec recessuros nisi
praecepto consulis post completa stipendia” (Serv. on
Besides this deliberate sacramentum,
there was frequently in times of great danger (in tumultu
) a swearing--in of the
soldiers en masse
), which first appears in 216 B.C.
). Something of the
kind doubtless also took place when what was technically called
i.e. an Italian or
Gallic war, suddenly arose (cf. Serv. on Aen.
8.1). The conjuratio,
differed from the sacramentum
that the soldier bound by the latter was not released from
service till he received his discharge (missio
), while he who was sworn--in by a conjuratio
was legally free from service
at the end of the crisis (Mommsen, Eph. Epigr.
The qualifications for service were after the time of Servius
Tullius, besides physical capacity (cf. Plb.
) and citizenship,
chiefly having a considerable stake in the country, i. e. a
rated property. The proletarii
were enrolled only
in times of great danger (Gel.
). Plutarch (Plut. Mar. 9
) states that slaves
also were deliberately enrolled; and though such did happen
occasionally in the confusion of the Civil War (Plut. Mar. 41
45; Flor. 2.9
; Caes. B.C.
1.24, 2; Bell. Afr.
19, 3; App. BC 2.103
), still it was a practice
which did not continue in settled times. Even in the age of
Theodosius a slave was not allowed to serve in the army
7.13, 8). The lowest census which admitted
a man to the army was in the time of Servius Tullius 11,000
asses, but by the time of Polybius (6.19
) it was only 4,000. In
the Social War libertini
enrolled (Liv. Epit.
lxxiv.); and already in the
time of Marius the capite censi
been taken into the service, the revolutionary nature of which
alteration is duly emphasised by ancient writers (Plut. Mar. 9
; V. Max. 2.3
; Gel. 16.10
), and its disastrous results noted by Appian (App. BC 5.16
), as we have seen
above (p. 785 a
Caesar and Pompeius assumed the right of enrolling whole legions
of native troops in the provinces (legiones
), who were not citizens (Caes.
this practice was restricted by Augustus to the [p. 1.806]
Eastern provinces. For it is to be especially noted
that Augustus made Italy and the West supply the western legions
and the East the eastern ones, and so paved the way for the
final division of the Empire into the partes
of the Theodosian era (Mommsen, Die
Conscriptionsordnung der röm. Kaiserzeit,
xix. pp. 11, 23--a
profound and spirited article). But in the West, although the
legions were partly raised from communities of Latins and
those who were
enrolled were made citizens (ποιησάμενοι
δὲ πολίτας, οὕτω καὶ στρατιώτας ἐποιήσατε,
Aristides, i. p. 352, Dind.: cf. Tac.
and a large number of the soldiers were by birth Roman citizens
(Mommsen, op. cit.
pp. 13, 63). Still we
must remember that freedmen served in the vigiles
(D. C. 4.26
The qualifications for the legionary service under the Empire,
besides such physical ones as health, strength, and a certain
height, viz. 5 ft. 10 in.--which regulation height was called
(Veg. 1.5)--and not ever having
been convicted of any serious crime, such as adultery (Dig. 49
(1) to belong to an urban community, which was considered to be
a guarantee of being civilised; (2) free-birth--qualifications
which were very often got over. For though formally the
legionary in the roll always had his native community attached
to his name, still Pannonians and Thracians figure very largely
among them; and freedmen were easily made free-born by the
fiction of natalium restitutio
(Mommsen, pp. 16-18): cf. Plin. Ep.
During the Empire there were seldom regular levies (Vell. 2.130,
2). We find such indeed after the defeat of Varus (Suet. Aug. 24
), under Nero (Suet. Nero 44
), Vitellius (Tac. Hist. 3.58
), Hadrian, M.
Aurelius, Maximinus (Mommsen in Hermes,
4.119); but as a general rule vacancies were
filled up by volunteers (Dig. 49
); and even in the levies getting a
substitute was allowed (Plin. Ep.
(39), 1). Gradually the Italians ceased
to take service in the legions;
and as in the
legions enrolled in the Vespasian era (e. g. I. Adjutrix) they
do not appear, while they do appear in those of Nero's time (e.
g. Leg. xi. at Vindonissa), we may put the consummation of this
important result in the time of Vespasian (Mommsen in Hermes,
19.19), though we must remember
that this was a result arising from natural causes, and not from
any regular legal enactment. In the Digest (l.c.
) the levy is still in theory universal and
exceptionless. The Latin provinces, then, from Vespasian's time
contributed more largely to the legions; and as a
counter-balance the African forces were from that time on
assigned to the Eastern division of the Empire (Mommsen, pp. 9,
19). The second important feature of the imperial conscription
was, for the most part, the local
conscription for each legion.
Under Hadrian the African
legion was almost exclusively enrolled from Africa and Numidia,
and to Hadrian we may attribute the extension of this regulation
to the whole Empire (ib. 10, 21).
The city-guards were raised by Augustus from the citizens of the
old Latin communities; under Tiberius Cisalpine Gaul is added:
but up to Severus Italians predominate, though in the second
century many soldiers appear who were natives of Spain,
Macedonia, and Noricum (D. C. 74.2
After Severus Italians rarely appear (Mommsen, pp. 52, 53).
From the time of the Social War and the extension of the
citizenship by the Lex Plotia Papiria, the Socii
had vanished entirely, and the legions and
auxilia form the two main bodies of the Roman army. The latter
were the non-Roman troops raised partly in the provinces, partly
from allied lings and nations. In imperial times they generally
stand opposed to the legions (Vell. 2.112, 4). These auxiliary
troops were for the most part raised from peregrini--
in the first instance in definite
districts from which they got their names, but the vacancies
which arose came to be filled up with natives of other
districts, especially from natives of the place where the troop
happened to be located. Thus in 60 A.D. (see Diploma ii.) an
Illyrian gets his discharge from the Cohors
located in Illyricum (Mommsen, p.
41). These non-citizen troops are designated by the name of the
to which they belonged;
for if they belonged to a town,
could have served in the legions (ib. 25). Local conscription
for each division probably began in the case of the auxiliaries
before it did in that of the legions (ib. 42). By Augustus the
auxiliaries were only taken from the imperial provinces and
Africa (ib. 44), the senatorial provinces supplying in larger
measure than the imperial ones the legions and the guard. But as
the senatorial provinces had no garrisons, when local
conscription was introduced by Hadrian, the legionaries ceased
to be taken from them; while those who belonged to urban
communities in these provinces, and wished to join the service,
served only in the guard, and after the time of Severus not even
there (ib. 51).
The officers who effected the recruiting under the Empire, which
they did by instituting an inquisitio
(39), 2), were called dilectatores
(Wilm. 1256, 1257), officials of
senatorial rank in Italy and the senatorial provinces, of
equestrian rank in the imperial (Mommsen,
19.56, 59). Sometimes
the levy was held by the proconsul in a senatorial province
(Tac. Ann. 14.18
The Line of March
The usual order of march in the second century B.C. is described
by Polybius (6.40
ff.). It was in a single column. First came the
--that is, if
the enemy were in front; for if they were in the rear, the
were placed in
the rear. Next came the ala dextra
of the allies, followed by its baggage and the baggage of the
Then one of the
legions, followed by its baggage; then the other legion,
followed by its own baggage and that of the ala sinistra
of the allies, which latter brought
up the rear. The cavalry usually followed the divisions of
infantry to which they were attached; sometimes, however, they
were placed on the flanks. The legions shifted places each day,
as did also the alae,
so that each
should get turns in the advantage of first arrival at fresh food
and water. In open places where an attack was imminent, the line
of march was [p. 1.807]
almost that of battle,
into which it could most readily be changed (Tac. Ann. 2.16
). Caesar calls it
1.49, 1, and passim
According to it, the hastati,
marched in three parallel columns beside one another, each
maniple having its baggage before it. On any danger approaching,
by a movement at one time to the right, at another to the left,
the maniple got clear of the baggage, and, having got it in the
rear, formed the triple battle array. But Caesar (e.g. B.
2.19, 1; cf. 8.8, 3) often varied this, arranging
the whole main body in front, then the whole of the baggage, and
behind it a rear-guard. The triplex
is usually called by Livy agmen quadratum,
which by no means implies a
square with four sides (Liv. 44.9
), but simply a rectangular
arrangement (cf. Cato in Non. 204, fronte
longa, quadrato exercitu
): see Liv. 10.14
, &c. But sometimes the Romans
formed a hollow square or rectangle, with the baggage in the
middle, when a sudden attack was at all expected. We first hear
of this arrangement, itself also called agmen
in the Spanish wars (e. g. in 151 B.C.;
App. Hisp. 55
), and it was
continued in the Jugurthine and Parthian wars (Sal. Jug. 46
; Plut. Crass. 23
), and frequently elsewhere (Tac. Ann. 1.51
)--from which passages we see also the
difference of arrangement on different occasions, sometimes the
front and rear being legions and the sides the allies, sometimes
a legion being on each side of the square, with the auxiliaries
as a front and rear guard, &c.
Nothing is more insisted on by the Roman writers than the great
weight of baggage the Roman soldier used to carry:
“injusto sub fasce viam cum carpit,” says
2.16, 37) says that, besides his shield,
sword, helmet, &c., “which he no more reckoned
than he did his shoulders, arms, or hands,” he had to
carry food for half a month or more (Caes. B.C.
1.78, 1), sometimes for a whole month (Liv.
), one or more
stakes, and various odds and ends: of the latter Josephus
3.5, 5) mentions a very miscellaneous
collection--saw, basket, spade (ἄμην
), axe, strap, sickle, rope. The whole weight
of the baggage Vegetius (1.19) estimates at 60 Roman pounds.
Marius made an arrangement for carrying all this on a board
fastened on to a forked support which was strapped across the
shoulders. They were called muli
(Frontin. 4.1, 7: cf. Festus, 24, 148, M.). By
this arrangement they could be both more easily carried, and
more readily cast aside and resumed when circumstances required
The heavy baggage, such as tents, hand-mills, &c., were
carried on horses or mules (jumenta
) driven by calones.
Every ten men had one tent, thereby forming
(Hyg. § 1;
Joseph. B. J.
3.6, 2). [CASTRA
] Each centurion and higher
officer had at least one tent. If we suppose each jumentum
carried one tent, we should
have over 2,000 jumenta
ordinary army of 20,000 men, so that the impedimenta,
even before artillery was much used,
was very considerable.
In the time after Hadrian the order of march appears to have been
that the legion was divided into two divisions, the first
consisting of the first five cohorts arranged from right to
left, the second the sixth to the tenth cohorts similarly
arranged (Veg. 2.15).
The Battle Array
According to Livy (8.8
), the ten maniples of the hastati
stood first, next immediately
behind the intervals (intervalla,
) between the
maniples of the hastati
and behind the
intervals of these the ten maniples of the triarii.
The arrangement was that of a quincunx
). Should the hastati
be defeated, they retired
through the intervals of the principes
(which shows by the way that the intervals
between the maniples must have been nearly if not quite as great
as the front of the maniple). Should the principes
likewise be defeated, “the
contest came to the triarii” (res
ad triarios redit),
which was a proverb for a most
serious state of things. This arrangement was the ordinary one;
but sometimes there was a variation, as for example, in the
battle of Zama, Scipio, in order to allow a free passage for the
elephants through the maniples, drew up the maniples of the
three lines straight behind each other (Plb.
The standards (signa,
standards of the maniples; for there were neither standards of
the cohorts nor was the eagle the legionary standard till the
time of Marius [SIGNA]) usually stood
behind the last row of the maniple. The signa,
especially alluded to in accounts of
battles, are those, of the hastati
). Hence we see clearly what Livy means when he
says (8.11, 7), “Caesos hastatos principesque, stragem et
ante signa et post signa factam, triarios postremo rem
restituisse.” The antesignani,
then, are the prima
(cf. Liv. 47
4; 10.27, 9); and in a similar sense postsignani
(a word, however, of late date) is used
for the second line, the principes
(Frontin. 2.3, 17). If the enemy are repulsed, the hastati
advance, signa promota
); and if the hastati
have to retire, the secunda acies ad prima signa successit
). But sometimes the signa
certainly appear to have been in the front of the maniples
15; Tac. Hist. 2.43
), and this was no doubt the usual
position not only in the march, but also in a charge in battle (
“et signae prae se ferri plenoque gradu ad castra
hostium oppugnanda succedere jubet,”
often used in the very general sense of the main body (Liv. 21.55
), and similarly we find it in
used for a
legionary soldier in opposition to an auxiliary (Tac. Hist. 1.70
), and to desert
was relinquere signa
Somewhat in this sense, too, we must understand the antesignani
in Caesar, who applies that
term apparently to a select body different from the common
soldiers (cf. Cic. Phil. 5.5
), formed inside the
legion (Caes. B.C.
1.57, 1) from the most active
and brave men, three (Bell. Afr.
78, 5) or four
3.75, 5), who were free from all
), and who could
be used for sudden exigencies, such as seizing a position
1.43, 3), reinforcing a hard-pressed
division (Bell. Afr.
l.c.) or fighting among the
3.84, 3). They would be so called
because they were independent of the [p. 1.808]
regular organisation of the legion, and mostly used for rapid
movements in front of it. H. Schiller (in I. Müller's
iv. p. 737) says that these corps
probably formed the
training school of able subaltern officers.
But something more must be said of the order of battle of the
whole combined army, legionaries and allies. The usual order
appears to have been the two legions in the centre, flanked on
the right by the ala dextra
allies, and on the left by the ala
On the extreme right was the legionary
cavalry and the equites
); on the extreme left the allied
cavalry. But there were frequent variations--sometimes the
cavalry was behind the legions (Liv.
), or the allies were
in front, the legions in reserve (35.5, 8), or the legions were
on the wings, e.q.
in the battle of
Scipio against Hasdrubal at Ilipa (Plb.
(3.20)--who is plainly copying from Cato, de
(cf. Cato ap. Nonium, 204), whom
Vegetius reproduces word for word--gives a whole series of
recognised kinds of attack: (1) fronte longa
--the normal kind described
above; (2, 3) obliqua acies,
right (as at Pharsalia, Caes. B.C.
3.91) or left
wing attacking; (4, 5) sinuata
both wings attacking, legionaries exposed or
guarded by light-armed; (6) whole army attack left wing of enemy
(usual when a battle ensues on the march); (7) a wing rests on a
fixed point (e. g. a river or a mountain), so that it cannot be
surrounded; (8) cuneus,
the soldiers caput porcinum
3.19; Amm. Marc. 17.13, 9
), viz. the centre projecting like
a wedge, a kind of attack to be received by a V-shaped
arrangement, called forfex.
example of a cuneus
and a forfex,
(By way of parenthesis we notice here other meanings of cuneus:
(1) any division (Augustin.
2.18, 48); (2) any
serried band--thus the maniples in battle are so called (Liv. 7.24
and the Macedonian phalanx (Liv.
); (3) in the later
Empire a definite division of cavalry (Cod.
5.4, 1; Not. Dign. Occ.
cf. C. I. L.
7.218), which appear among German
troops (Tac. Germ.
6), e. g. the Frisii in
Britain in the third century (cf. Mommsen in Hermes,
In particular emergencies other combinations of soldiers were
formed, with special names: e.g. (a) orbis,
a serried, not a hollow, square or mass, which
soldiers hard-pressed by the enemy formed (volvere, facere
), to protect themselves on all
sides and to prevent themselves being scattered (Sall.
97, 5; Caes.
used either by the whole army against a
violent discharge of missiles, or by a small division in
attacking a wall. The front rank held their long
half-cylindrical shaped shields before them, and the other
ranks, each stooping a little more than the one before it, held
their shields closely locked together above their heads so as to
form a sloping roof. Full description in D. C. 49.30
; Liv. 34.39
a general word for a
division (Liv. 4.29
Tac. Ann. 14.61
The labours of Hadrian in his organisation and improvement in the
discipline of the army are often mentioned (Spart.
10; D. C. 69.9
; Aurel. Vict. 14, 10). Under
him we may place the definite return to the arrangement by
phalanx, which was the earliest arrangement of all in Roman
history. Not but that the phalanx was used earlier. A fight of
man against man, which in a broad way of speaking was the style
of fighting used in the Republic, had to give way when barbarian
hosts were met; for barbarians are far less dangerous to masses
than to individuals. In a battle Suetonius Paullinus fought
against the Britons he marshalled his forces in three phalanxes,
so that they could not be broken (D. C.
). But the work of Arrian, ἔκταξις κατ̓ Ἀλβάνων
: see D. C. 69.15
), legatus of Cappadocia in 136 A.D., which describes officially the
arrangement in a phalanx, causes us to fix Hadrian's reign as
the period of its definite adoption. The phalanx is eight deep,
in close array, the first four lines armed with pila
), the last four with lanceae
) [LANCEA]: cf.
Tac. Hist. 1.79
] were to be used by the front rank
for piercing, by the other three lines as missiles (Arrian, op. cit.
15). The cavalry and artillery
stood both on the wings and in the rear of the phalanx (ib. 19),
and further back still a reserve of picked men to make a charge
at the right moment (ib. 22, 23). We hear that Caracalla had a
phalanx of 16,000 Macedonians (D. C.
), and Alexander
Severus one of 30,000 (Lampr. Alex. Sev.
Conditions of the Service
Augustus, we are told in Suetonius (Suet.
), “quicquid utique militum esset, ad certam
stipendiorum praemiorumque formulam astrinxit; definitis pro
gradu cuiusque et temporibus militiae et commodis missionum, ne
aut aetate aut inopia post missionem sollicitari ad res novas
possent:” cf. also D. C.
, ἐπὶ ῥητοῖς . . . καταλεγόμενος,
2.11, 5, where, as in Suetonius, the conditions alluded to have
reference to pay while in the service, the number of years' service
which was required, and some consideration or reward on discharge.
Prior to the siege of Veii, in 406 B.C., the expenses of the Roman soldier were defrayed by
his tribe (Dionys. A. R.
the knights, who got from the treasury an aes
to purchase and aes
to feed his horse. And even after 406
the pay was rather for maintenance than for remuneration,
It was paid at the
end of service--for service up to six months, which was a
), six months' pay (Dionys. A. R. 9.59
); for service beyond six months,
which was an annuum stipendium
), a year's pay (Diod.
): cf. Varro ap. Non. p. 532, s. v. acre
. (The six months were from March to August.) The
payment was laid on the conquered (Liv.
; Dionys. A. R. 9.17
). Polybius (6.39
says that the provisions, clothes, and accoutrements were
deducted from the pay; and, though we hear that C. Gracchus
brought in a law providing clothes for the soldiers at state
expense (Plut. C. Gracch.
5), we know that in the
time of the Emperor Tiberius they
(Tac. Ann. 1.17
that they had to supply out of their pay vestem arma tentoria
--a passage which, by the
omission of frumenta,
at this time their food was supplied by the state, as it
certainly was later (Veg. 2.19, 20; 3.3). But if the soldier had
these items deducted from his pay, it was incumbent on the state
to see that there were proper supplies of them (Liv. 27.10
Caes. Gal. 1.16
The amount of the pay in the time of Polybius was two obols a day
for the legionary, four for the centurion, and six for the
horseman. Now a drachma to Polybius was equal to a denarius,
which originally was 10 asses: therefore the annual pay of the
legionary for the year of 360 days was 1200 asses, of the
centurion 2,400, and of the horseman 3,600. In 217 B.C. the
denarius was made equal to 16 asses, but the old reckoning of
the denarius (=10 asses) remained for the soldiers (Plin. Nat. 33.45
). Caesar is
said to have doubled the military pay (Suet. Jul. 26
). What he actually did was, he trebled
their nominal pay (i. e. 1200 asses), but paid them in the new
coinage (1 denarius=16 asses), so that they got 225 denarii a
year. There is, however, a certain confusion. In Tac. Ann. 1.17
the legionaries say
they got 10 asses a day and claim to get a denarius, while Pliny
) says that in military pay the
denarius was always
given for 10 asses
nominal; so that the claims of the legionaries appear to be for
what they already got. Perhaps the claim was that the 225
denarii, which was now their pay, be paid at 16 asses the
denarius, and not at 10. Other troops were paid certainly in
denarii, e. g. the praetorians (qui binos
) = 720 denarii a year. Sometime between 27
and the time referred to in this passage
of Tacitus the pay of the praetorians was raised from 1 1/4 of a
denarius to 2 denarii, for in 27 they got double the pay of the
legionary (D. C. 53.11
increased the pay of the legionaries by one-third, so that it
was now 300 denarii. From the time of Caesar the payments were
made every four months, each payment being called a stipendium,
so that the soldiers got
each year (Suet. Dom. 7
; Zonar. 11.19
). The pay of the cohortes urbanae
is to be inferred from the
legacies left to them by Augustus and Tiberius (D. C. 56.32
which were doubtless, as in the case of the praetorians and
legionaries, one stipendium,
120 denarii; therefore their yearly pay would be 360 denarii.
The only superior officer's pay we know of is that of the
in the third
century, i. e. 25,000 sesterces (see Inscription of Torigny).
Military men sometimes, for distinguished bravery or for acting
after their legal period of service had
expired, got increased pay; and as such, if the pay was doubled,
were styled duplarii
(Varro, L. L.
(Bramb. 475); if the pay was increased by
3.3164; Veg. 2.7). The term salariarii
points to officers who were employed in
civil rather than in strictly military duties; and their years
of service are called salaria
(C. I. L.
6.2495, 2589). It is applied to
Mommsen in Eph. Epigr.
2. Length of service and discharge.
During the Republic the citizens were bound to serve between the
completed 17th year and the completed 46th (Gel. 10.28
; Mommsen, Staatsr.
i.2 487), the legionary being bound to serve
sixteen or at most twenty campaigns, the horseman ten (Plb. 6.19
for ἕξ οὐ
). Under Augustus the
legionary had to serve sixteen years (D.
afterwards it was fixed at twenty, that of the praetorians being
sixteen (ib. lv, 23, 1; Tac. Ann.
), that of the
urban cohorts being twenty (Dig. 27
), and that of the auxiliaries being
twenty-five: see the Diplomata passim,
where the formulae are for the legionaries
qui vicena stipendia aut plura
(e.g. Dipl. vi.), for the auxiliary forces
qui quina et vicena stipendia aut plura
(e.g. Dipl. ix.). Note aut plura;
for as a matter of fact we
find that soldiers were very commonly retained in the service as
long after their legal
term of service had expired, e. g. we have evocati
of thirty-eight (C. I. L.
3.2818) and forty-six years' service (Mommsen on C. I.
iii. p. 282). After the year 108 A.D., in the Diplomata we always find the privileges
of veterans accorded only to those who are discharged (dimissi honesta missione
), but yet these
often appear to be still serving in such and such an army under
such and such a leader (e. g. Dipl. xxxiv.). After Hadrian's
time it appears (see Mommsen in Eph. Epigr.
4, No. 10) that a soldier did not get the honesta missio
till twenty-five years' service,
but during the last five years he was released from the harder
duties, or in a later age chosen among the protectores
(Mommsen on C. I. L.
3.6194). Hence we see how it is that the period of service is
said sometimes to be twenty years (Dig. l.c.; Cod.
7.64, 9), sometimes twenty-five (Serv. ad Aen. 2.157
Discharge, though properly a function of the emperor, yet is
often said to have been performed by such and such a legatus
(C. I. L.
1172; Eph. Epigr.
iv. p. 502). In the case of
if the veterans
did not get land, they got a lump sum of money, the praetorians
3,000 (D. C. 55.23
), which Caligula (Suet. Cal. 44
) cut down to half and
Caracalla raised to 5,000 (D. C.
). In case of physical incapacity or sickness, a
soldier got what was called a causaria
As to drumming out (ignominiosa missio
), see below (p. 811 b
), and compare Dig.
Miscellaneous Features of the Service.
All the Diplomata give certain privileges with regard to marriage
to the person or persons named in each document. The only Roman
citizens these privileges are granted to are the praetorians and
urban cohorts, and in their case grant them the right of forming
with the first woman
of foreign birth they marry after discharge, and the consequent
legitimacy of the children arising from such a marriage (cf.
Gaius, 1.57). Dio Cassius (60.24, 3) says that a soldier
(meaning doubtless one who was a Roman citizen) could not
legally marry while in the service and prior to his [p. 1.810]
discharge, or at any rate till
performance of his full term of service; but Claudius allowed
them to do so (τοῖς στρατευομένοις
ἐπειδὴ γυναῖκας οὐκ ἐδύναντο ἔκ γε τῶν νόμων
ἔχειν τὰ τῶν γεγαμηκότων δικαιώματα
). If he was married before joining the army
), he could retain his wife, but could not keep her in
the camp, and so had to part from her; but as men entered the
army about their 18th year, there cannot have been many such
cases. The only women in the camp were either meretrices
) or non-Romans (Liv.
): in early times it
was a great disgrace for a Roman woman to be in the camp (Serv.
). Hence the
auxiliaries could easily get wives of their own class; and as
they served for a somewhat longer period than the legionaries,
they were allowed to marry while still soldiers; and in the
Diplomata, which are given in great numbers to the auxiliaries,
they get the right of connubium
with the wives they already have when the latter have got
citizenship, or if unmarried the right of connubium
with whatever wife they chose to marry
subsequently to the issue of the diploma. The Roman soldier,
then, could not legally marry; and this was the rule before the
time of Severus. But by him all soldiers were allowed to have a
concubine (technically called focaria,
Cod. Just. 5.16
); and auxiliaries and
legionaries were put on the same level. For that is the meaning
of γυναιξί τε συνοικεῖν
Herodian, 3.8, 5 ; not that the soldiers could contract regular
as may be seen from
the Diplomata subsequent to this date: e. g. liii., which runs,
“ipsis filiisque eorum quos susceperint ex mulieribus
quas secum concessa consuetudine
dederunt et connubium cum iisdem quas
tunc secure habuissent
cum est civitas his
data, aut, si qui tune non habuissent, cum iis quas postea
(cf. Eph. Epigr.
v. p. 100). The children sprung
from such a focaria
bore the name
of the mother (cf. the four children born to one man from four
in Dipl. liii.),
were said to have been born in the camp, and all assigned to the
tribe Pollia, so as to enable them to take service in the
legions (Wilmanns in C. I. L.
viii. p. 284;
Mommsen in Hermes,
19.11, note). In
the fourth century all soldiers could marry (Cod.
7.13, 6), and permission could be granted by the
commander to a soldier to keep his wife in the camp (Cod.
7.1, 3, and Godefroi's notes; Cod.
This is Mommsen's view (C. I. L.
iii. p. 905 if.),
and as it is generally adopted has been set forth fully. But
Mispoulet (Le Mariage des Soldats romains in the Revue de
1884, pp. 113-126) has raised some
strong arguments against it. The exigencies of a military life,
he says, always preclude the majority of soldiers from marriage;
but that is different from a legal prohibition of it. It is à priori
Augustus, who encouraged marriage so much, would have condemned
200,000 men in the prime of life to celibacy. Again, the
inscriptions constantly speak of the conjux
of a soldier and call him maritus:
e.g. C. I. L.
5949; 7.23, 25, 121, 245; 8.3084, &c.; but we do not
know the dates of these inscriptions, and we need not suppose
that they necessarily speak with strict accuracy, nor that what
cohabitation may not have
been expressed by the more honourable term. But the passages
adduced from the Digest are strong: 49, 17, 16, pr.,
“Dotem filiofamilias datam vel promissam in peculio
castrensi non esse respondi (Papinianus). . . Dos matrimonio
cohaerens;” 23, 2 (de ritu
), 45, 2, “Plane si filius-familias
miles esse proponatur non dubitamus, si castrensis peculii
ancillam manumiserit, competere ei hoc ius,”
&c.; 23, 2, 35, “Filiusfamilias miles matrimonium
sine patris voluntate non contrahit.” These passages
cannot be got over by saying that they refer to marriage
contracted before entering the service. Mispoulet's explanation
of the passage in Dio Cassius is that Claudius allowed the
soldiers who could not live with their wives according to
military rules, and so did not marry, relief from all the
penalties which fell on unmarried civilians--an exceedingly
reasonable interpretation of the words. He notices also that
Severus's enactment was that wives might live
their husbands; and just about that time, as
Wilmanns has shown (l, c.
), the camp at
Lambaesis ceased to be lived in by the soldiers: they go to the
town and only return to the camp at stated hours. The connubium
granted by the Diplomata, he
says, was the right of full marriage, which would put the
children in the position of those born from two Roman citizens,
even if one or both of the parents were peregrinae condicionis.
2. Business of the Soldier in peace. Exercises and the
Construction of Public Works.
It was always in accordance with Roman discipline that the
soldiers should not get demoralised by inaction, nor should
they, as the Emperor Probus put it, eat the bread of idleness (
“annonam gratuitam milites comedere non
debere,” Vopisc. Prob.
29): cf. Frontin.
4.1, 15. In the first place, then, they had to go through the
(see especially Vegetius,
2.23, and i. passim
) necessary to
keep them in efficient training, which gave the name to the army
Veg. 2.23). Hadrian
laid great stress on this drill (Spart. Hadr.
3), which was held twice a day for recruits, once for full
soldiers. They were further trained in wood-cutting, riding,
jumping, running, swimming, shooting javelins and arrows,
slinging stones, fencing and sparring at a stake with an
unpointed wooden stick (vectis,
Veg. 1.11; sudes,
; κυιντανὸν κόντακα,
Cod. Just. 3.43
called because often practised in the via
), &c. Besides this, there was
occasionally the decursio,
evolution whereby the army divided into two parts, and engaged
in a sham fight; this especially after the review (lustratio
): see Liv.
; cf. Eckhel,
6.271, 503. Also once a month the ambulatio,
i.e. fully armed and equipped to march ten
miles forward and ten miles back at the regulation military pace
(four miles an hour), sometimes at an accelerated pace (pleno gradu
=nearly five miles an hour):
cf. Veg. 1.9, 27.
Soldiers often executed certain public works. They were never
allowed to work for private people (Dig.
; cf. Liv.
xi.); but sometimes they were allowed to
build temples and public edifices for the municipalities in the
provinces (Dig. 50
). In republican [p. 1.811]
soldiers were occasionally employed in executing large public
works. For example, Flamininus had the road from Bononia to
Arretium made by his soldiers (Liv.
); Marius dug the Fossa
Mariana from Exagium (St. Gabriel), about 5 Roman miles N. of
Arles, to the village of Fos (Fossae Marianae portus), about 28
Roman miles N.W. of Marseilles. The length of the canal was
nearly 30 Roman miles. (Full discussion in Desjardins,
Géographie de la Gaule romaine,
p. 199 ff.) Sulla diverted the river Cephissus from its channel
(Plut. Sull. 16
): cf. also
Caes. Gal. 1.8
; Bell. Afr.
But the great works of the Roman soldiery appear under the
(1.) The Limites,
fortifications; such as, the Vallum
or Picts' Wall in the N. of England, from
Wallsend (Segedunum), E. of Newcastle-on-Tyne (Pons Aelius), to
Bowness (Glannibanta), W. of Carlisle (Luguvallium). This work
is even now in its ruins one of the most impressive monuments of
Roman military greatness. It is well known to all English
scholars, with its stations, trenches, mile-castles,
&c., thanks to Dr. Bruce's learned and eloquent work
(The Roman Wall,
3rd edit. 1867). Again, the
from the mouth of the
Lahn near Kelheim to the Danube; the Limes
(2.) The Military Roads,
which were always the
main high roads (Quint. 2.13, 16). From the duties of
road-making even veterans were not free (Dig.
). These roads were everywhere. To take two examples:
in Dalmatia, the road from Salonae to Andretium was built by the
Seventh Legion (C. I. L.
3.1627); and in Africa
the road from Carthage to Thevesta was built by the Third Legion
(C. I. L.
8.10048). For more, see the
chapters on Viae Publicae
various volumes of C. I. L.
Both legionaries and
auxiliaries worked at these roads: see the important inscription
from Coptos in Eph. Epigr.
v. pp. 5-17.
(3.) Keeping up and extending the fortifications
already in existence. In all the
provinces there are vast numbers of bricks found with the stamp
of the legions which executed works there. For British ones, see
C. I. L.
vii. p. 255 sqq.
(4.) Miscellaneous works
(cf. generally Vopisc.
9, 2), such as making bridges (Tac. Ann. 1.20
), cutting canals
(ib. 11.20), building ampnitheatres (ib. Hist.
2.67), temples (e. g. that of Aesculapius
and Salus at Lambaesis, C. I. L.
dredging rivers and harbours (Suet. Aug.
; Liban. i. p. 324, Reiske), planting vineyards
18, 8), trying to make head
against locusts (Plin. Nat.
), even working in mines (Tac. Ann. 11.20
), though this was generally one of
the severest punishments (Dig. 48
pr.), and as a punishment was not inflicted on soldiers (ib. 49,
16, 3, 1).
3. Rewards and Punishments.
With regard to rewards,
it will be
sufficient to refer to the Index, s. v. Military Rewards, and
the various articles mentioned there, such as CORONA, OVATIO, TRIUMPHUS. But a word
here may be said on the punishments,
which Modestinus summarises in the Digest, 49
: “Poenae militum
hujuscemodi sunt, castigatio, pecuniaria
multa, munerum indictio, militiae mutatio, gradus
deiectio, ignominiosa missio.
(Compare, for many examples, V. Max.
, De disciplina
could be inflicted
even on officers (Val. Max. l.c.
(2.) Pecuniaria multa
deprivation of whole (ib. § 5) or part of pay (Liv. 40.41
), the campaign not being reckoned in the year of
service. One who thus lost his pay was called aere dirutus
(Fest. s.v. Non. p. 532).
(3.) Munerum indictio
inflicted only on those who were in some degree immunes,
by making them munifices
), which may be
regarded as gradus dejectio.
(4.) Militiae mutatio,
e. g. from the cavalry to the infantry (Frontin. 4.1, 18), or to
(V. Max. 2.7
). This was also called ordinis
(cf. C. I. L.
(5.) Ignominiosa missio
drumming-out before the whole army. See the striking scene in
54, 4. The soldier thus cashiered
could not appear at Rome or at the emperor's court (neque in sacro comitatu,
To these add--
(6.) When whole troops were in fault, they were often given
barley instead of wheat for food (a punishment inflicted on
individuals also, Veg. 1.13), and made to bivouac outside the
camp (Plb. 6.38
): cf. Liv. 10.4
; Suet. Aug.
(8.) Capital punishment,
which could only be
inflicted by the consul during the Republic (Dionys. A. R. 11.43
), or by
the emperor or legatus legionis
during the Empire (D. C. 52.22
). It was the penalty for
insubordination, secret correspondence with the enemy, or loss
of standards (Dionys. l.c.;
3.5, 7; Tac.
; Dig. 49
It was frequently inflicted in the terrible manner called
(With regaro to desertion, it may be parenthetically noted that
differed from the
in that the former
intended to stay away and was brought back, while the emansor
either came back of himself or
at any rate intended to come back--the same distinction as
subsisted among slaves between fugitivus
Not the least important function of the general was to see that
the army had sufficient provisions. When the commissariat had
been properly seen to, the campaign or expedition used to begin
(cf. Caes. Gal. 1.37
Each foot-soldier in the time of Polybius (6.39
) used to get per
month two-thirds of an Attic medimnus of wheat; each Roman
horse-soldier, 7 medimni of barley and 2 medimni of wheat; each
horse-soldier of the allies, 5 medimni of barley and 1 1/3
medimni of wheat. The extra supply for the horse-soldiers was
for the support of two servants for each Roman and one for each
ally. The food of the Greeks was mostly barley (cf. Xen.
7.1, 37); but the Romans
used more wheat, as that is more nourishing for those who have
to go through a great deal of physical exertion (Galen, 6.507,
ed. Kuhn). Barley was sometimes, as we have seen, given as a
punishment. The soldier used to carry rations for seventeen days
(Amm. Marc. 17.9
; Lampr. Alex. Sev.
47), or perhaps in strictness for only
sixteen days (see A. Langen, Die Heeresverpflegung der
Römer im letzten Jahrhundert der Republik,
p. 5 ff.). The corn when measured out (metiri
) to the soldiers was neither ground nor baked.
For the former process hand-mills (molae
] were used,
which were carried by the beasts of burden. Once ground, the
meal was made into a kind of porridge (puls,
Plin. Nat. 18.83
); hence the
Romans are jestingly called pultiphagi,
3.2, 143; Poenul.
prol. 54). Often it was baked into bread (Plut. Mar. 7
; Plin. Nat.
). Cocta cibaria
are frequently mentioned in the times of the early Republic
); and often reference is made to supplies for the
fleet (ib. 21.49, 7; 24.11, 9; 44.35, 13). We do not hear of
) till the
Empire (Spart. Pesc.
10; Ammian. 17.8, 2
soldiers baked their own bread (Plut.
); and it was only in times of lax discipline
that they sold their corn and bought bread day by day (Sal. Jug. 44
). Meat was quite a secondary article of food in
the time of the Republic and early Empire (Caes. Gal. 1.48
): and it was considered a case
of real hardship when life had to be supported on meat alone
(Caes. Gal. 7.17
). It is only in one case, and that when
sufficient corn could not be supplied, that Caesar made a
requisition on the allies for meat (B.C.
4). Vegetables (legumina
) were also
occasionally used in case of an insufficient supply of corn (ib.
3.47, 7); and of course salt was always given (cf. Plut. Crass. 19
). For drink we
hear of vinegar being supplied to make the draught called
10). Wine was
often served out (Veg. 3.3; cf. Plut.
), though not by strict disciplinarians
7), and it was often obtained in
great quantities when discipline was relaxed (Sal. Jug. 44
). We know that the
price of the corn doled out to the Roman soldier was deducted
from his pay (which was called ὀψώνιον
by Polybius, 6.39
). Langen (op. cit.
p. 13) calculates that it
amounted to about 40 denarii a year. Anything in the shape of
luxuries was supplied by the sutlers (lixae
), who used to follow the army. They were so
subversive of discipline that real soldierly generals used
frequently to banish them from following the camp (App. Hisp. 85
45). The army used often to be supported by
quartering it in towns, and the extravagant abuses of this
practice in the last century of the Republic are insisted on by
Cicero (pro Imp. Pomp.
13, 38; cf. Plut. Sull. 25
3.5, 2; 31, 4). The frequent practice of
Caesar in his wars was to lay a requisition for corn on
tributary states, making the magistrates responsible (B.
1.16, 6; 48, 2; 2.2, 5, &c.). Indeed, the
great Roman skill in organising is shown by the way Caesar was
generally so well supplied with provisions, and also by the
arrangements by which the large armies of Pompeius (Caes.
3.5) and Brutus and Cassius (App. BC 4.100
) were kept in
supplies. These supplies were of the nature of a forcible
requisition, and there is no evidence of their having been paid
for (Langen, op. cit.
p. 27). The war,
as Cato used to say (Liv. 34.9
), should support itself. Magazines
) were erected for the
supplies to be transported to (Caes. B.C.
4). Vesontio, for example, was one (B. G.
1). In the provinces of the Empire, too, there were large
magazines (Tac. Agr.
19), whither the provincials
brought the corn supply (annona
Veg. 3.3). One of the accounts of the
supplies in the imperial magazines tells us that they consisted
of vinegar, corn, suet (larido
barley, and straw (Capit. Gord.
28): another that
they consisted of wine, vinegar, biscuits, suet, meat
7.4, 6), probably pork. The duty
of transport (vectura
) lay on the
magistrates of the tributary towns (Caes. B.C.
3.32, 2). There is only one case in the later Republic of the
supply of the army being dependent on merchants (App. BC 4.108
), though contracts
for military supplies are mentioned in the early history (e. g.
). Foraging was also a frequent means of getting
provisions. For details on this and other points connected with
the provisions of the army, see Langen, op.
for foraging especially, pp. 21-23.
Among the principales
reckoned (p. 803 a
) the clerks of
the stores (horrei
). We may add the
8.2553) and venatores
4.526), who looked after the
procuring of the meat, and the lanii,
who saw to the killing of it (Dig. 50
(6)). For further, cf. Arnold Langen,
Die Heeresverpflegung der Römer,
5. Associations in the Army.
Belonging to every cohort of the legion, under charge of the
and subordinate clerks
), was a
into which one-half of
all extraordinary grants of money, such as donativa,
were paid by the soldiers, and probably
also what additional sum each soldier might wish to deposit.
There was also a burial fund
legion, to which every soldier contributed a trifle (Veg. 2.20).
We also find kinds of friendly societies
formed by certain classes of the principales.
Such a society, as well as the building
in which it met (Wilmanns in C. I. L.
Comm. in honorem Mommseni,
p. 200, note 62)
was called scola
iv. p. 146). None is more interesting than in
C. I. L.
8.2557, the scola
of 36 cornicines of Legion iii. Aug. at Lambaesis.
Each member had to pay an entrance fee (scamnarium
--his “sitting” apparently, not
his “footing” ) cf 720 denarii. If he is ordered
across the sea, he gets 200 denarii; when he becomes a veteran,
he gets an anularium
means) of 500, if promoted 500, if degraded (quod abominamur
) 250, if he dies his heirs or
executors are to get 500--all apparently on condition that his
full liability has been paid up. The scola
C. I. L.
8.2554 has a quaestor.
For military armour and weapons, see CALIGA,
GALEA, GLADIUS, HASTA, LORICA, OCREA, PILUM, SCUTUM.
For Dress, Military Ensigns, Military Engines, see the articles
cited in the Index.
(Besides various articles on special points connected with the
army which are scattered throughout German periodicals,
especially those by Mommsen in the Ephemeris
there are systematic treatises on the Roman army in Lange,
Historia mutationum rei militaris
1846; Madvig, Die Verfassung und
Verwaltung des röm. Staates,
ii. [p. 1.813]
ii.2 319-612; H. Schiller, in Iwan
Müller's Handbuch der klassischen
vol. ii. In this latter work
there is a most extensive and well-nigh complete bibliography of
books, monographs, and articles bearing on Roman military