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Eine römische Legion war ein selbstständig operierender militärischer Großverband im Römischen Reich, der die meiste Zeit aus 30Soldaten schwerer Infanterie und einer kleinen Abteilung Legionsreiterei mit etwa Mann bestand. Eine römische Legion (lateinisch legio, von legere „lesen“ im Sinne von: „auslesen“, „auswählen“) war ein selbstständig operierender militärischer Großverband. Jh. a) – d) nicht vorhanden, bei Rom · Legio III Gallica (Caesar), um 49 v. Chr. – mind. Legion. Die 28 Legionen waren mit jeweils 50Mann zur Zeit des Kaisers Augustus die größte Einheit des römischen Heeres. Sie rekrutierten sich. Das brutale Motto der Fremdenlegion „Marschier oder Krepier“, galt auch für den antiken Vorläufer. Das erste, was der Rekrut bei der Legion.
- Erkunde Tiberiuss Pinnwand „Römische Legion“ auf Pinterest. Weitere Ideen zu Römische legion, Römisch, Römische soldaten. - Erkunde Andreas Kirchmairs Pinnwand „Römische Legion“ auf Pinterest. Weitere Ideen zu Römische legion, Römisch, Römische soldaten. Waren die Legionen zu Beginn noch hauptsächlich mit Wehrpflichtigen bestückt, änderte sich dieses durch die Heeresreform von Kaiser Augustus um georgesteen.nl
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Android Apps and Games. Also, some warfare was still conducted by Roman forces outside the legionary structure, the most famous example being the campaign in BC by the clan army of gens Fabia against the Etruscan city of Veii in which the clan was annihilated.
Legions became more formally organized in the 4th century BC, as Roman warfare evolved to more frequent and planned operations, and the consular army was raised to two legions each.
In the Republic, legions had an ephemeral existence. Except for Legio I to IV, which were the consular armies two per consul , other units were levied by campaign.
Rome's Italian allies were required to provide approximately ten cohorts auxilia were not organized into legions to support each Roman Legion. Each of these three lines was subdivided into usually 10 chief tactical units called maniples.
A maniple consisted of two centuries and was commanded by the senior of the two centurions. At this time, each century of hastati and principes consisted of 60 men; a century of triarii was 30 men.
These 3, men twenty maniples of men, and ten maniples of 60 men , together with about 1, velites and cavalry gave the mid Republican "manipular" legion a nominal strength of about 4, men.
The Marian reforms of Gaius Marius enlarged the centuries to 80 men, and grouped them into six-century "cohorts" rather than two-century maniples.
Each century had its own standard and was made up of ten units contubernia of eight men who shared a tent, a millstone, a mule and cooking pot.
Following the reforms of the general Marius in the 2nd century BC, the legions took on the second, narrower meaning that is familiar in the popular imagination as close-order citizen heavy infantry.
At the end of the 2nd century BC, Gaius Marius reformed the previously ephemeral legions as a professional force drawing from the poorest classes, enabling Rome to field larger armies and providing employment for jobless citizens of the city of Rome.
However, this put the loyalty of the soldiers in the hands of their general rather than the State of Rome itself. This development ultimately enabled Julius Caesar to cross the Rubicon with an army loyal to him personally and effectively end the Republic.
The legions of the late Republic and early Empire are often called Marian legions. He justified this action to the Senate by saying that in the din of battle he could not distinguish Roman from ally.
This effectively eliminated the notion of allied legions; henceforth all Italian legions would be regarded as Roman legions, and full Roman citizenship was open to all the regions of Italy.
At the same time, the three different types of heavy infantry were replaced by a single, standard type based on the Principes : armed with two heavy javelins called pila singular pilum , the short sword called gladius , chain mail lorica hamata , helmet and rectangular shield scutum.
The role of allied legions would eventually be taken up by contingents of allied auxiliary troops, called Auxilia. Auxilia contained specialist units, engineers and pioneers, artillerymen and craftsmen, service and support personnel and irregular units made up of non-citizens, mercenaries and local militia.
These were usually formed into complete units such as light cavalry, light infantry or velites , and labourers. There was also a reconnaissance squad of 10 or more light mounted infantry called speculatores who could also serve as messengers or even as an early form of military intelligence service.
As part of the Marian reforms, the legions' internal organization was standardized. Each legion was divided into cohorts. Prior to this, cohorts had been temporary administrative units or tactical task forces of several maniples, even more transitory than the legions themselves.
Now the cohorts were ten permanent units, composed of 6 centuries and in the case of the first cohort 5 double strength centuries each led by a centurion assisted by an optio.
The cohorts came to form the basic tactical unit of the legions. Ranking within the legion was based on length of service, with the senior Centurion commanding the first century of the first cohort; he was called the primus pilus First Spear , and reported directly to the superior officers legates and tribuni.
All career soldiers could be promoted to the higher ranks in recognition of exceptional acts of bravery or valour. A newly promoted junior Centurion would be assigned to the sixth century of the tenth cohort and slowly progressed through the ranks from there.
Every legion had a large baggage train, which included mules 1 mule for every 8 legionaries just for the soldiers' equipment.
To make this easier, he issued each legionary a cross stick to carry their loads on their shoulders. The soldiers were nicknamed Marius' Mules because of the amount of gear they had to carry themselves.
This arrangement allowed for the possibility for the supply train to become temporarily detached from the main body of the legion, thus greatly increasing the army's speed when needed.
A typical legion of this period had 5, legionaries as well as a large number of camp followers, servants and slaves. Legions could contain as many as 11, fighting men when including the auxiliaries.
During the Later Roman Empire, the legion was reduced in size to 1, to allow for easier provisioning and to expand the regions under surveillance.
Numbers would also vary depending on casualties suffered during a campaign; Julius Caesar 's legions during his campaign in Gaul often only had around 3, men.
Tactics were not very different from the past, but their effectiveness was largely improved because of the professional training of the soldiers.
After the Marian reforms and throughout the history of Rome's Late Republic, the legions played an important political role. By the 1st century BC, the threat of the legions under a demagogue was recognized.
Governors were not allowed to leave their provinces with their legions. When Julius Caesar broke this rule, leaving his province of Gaul and crossing the Rubicon into Italy, he precipitated a constitutional crisis.
This crisis and the civil wars which followed brought an end to the Republic and led to the foundation of the Empire under Augustus in 27 BC.
Generals, during the recent Republican civil wars, had formed their own legions and numbered them as they wished. During this time, there was a high incidence of Gemina twin legions, where two legions were consolidated into a single organization and was later made official and put under a legatus and six duces.
At the end of the civil war against Mark Antony , Augustus was left with around fifty legions, with several double counts multiple Legio Xs for instance.
For political and economic reasons, Augustus reduced the number of legions to 28 which diminished to 25 after the Battle of Teutoburg Forest , in which 3 legions were completely destroyed by the Germanics.
Beside streamlining the army, Augustus also regulated the soldiers' pay. At the same time, he greatly increased the number of auxiliaries to the point where they were equal in number to the legionaries.
He also created the Praetorian Guard along with a permanent navy where served the liberti , or freed slaves. The legions also became permanent at this time, and not recruited for particular campaigns.
They were also allocated to static bases with permanent castra legionaria legionary fortresses. Augustus' military policies proved sound and cost effective, and were generally followed by his successors.
These emperors would carefully add new legions, as circumstances required or permitted, until the strength of the standing army stood at around 30 legions hence the wry remark of the philosopher Favorinus that It is ill arguing with the master of 30 legions.
With each legion having 5, legionaries usually supported by an equal number of auxiliary troops according to Tacitus , the total force available to a legion commander during the Pax Romana probably ranged from 11, downwards, with the more prestigious legions and those stationed on hostile borders or in restive provinces tending to have more auxiliaries.
Some legions may have even been reinforced at times with units making the associated force near 15,—16, or about the size of a modern division. Throughout the imperial era, the legions played an important political role.
Their actions could secure the empire for a usurper or take it away. For example, the defeat of Vitellius in the Year of the Four Emperors was decided when the Danubian legions chose to support Vespasian.
In the empire, the legion was standardized, with symbols and an individual history where men were proud to serve. The legion was commanded by a legatus or legate.
Aged around thirty, he would usually be a senator on a three-year appointment. Immediately subordinate to the legate would be six elected military tribunes — five would be staff officers and the remaining one would be a noble heading for the Senate originally this tribune commanded the legion.
There would also be a group of officers for the medical staff, the engineers, record-keepers, the praefectus castrorum commander of the camp and other specialists such as priests and musicians.
There is no evidence to suggest that legions changed in form before the Tetrarchy , although there is evidence that they were smaller than the paper strengths usually quoted.
The final form of the legion originated with the elite legiones palatinae created by Diocletian and the Tetrarchs. These were infantry units of around 1, men rather than the 5,, including cavalry, of the old Legions.
The earliest legiones palatinae were the Lanciarii , Joviani , Herculiani and Divitenses. The 4th century saw a very large number of new, small legions created, a process which began under Constantine II.
In addition to the elite palatini , other legions called comitatenses and pseudocomitatenses , along with the auxilia palatina , provided the infantry of late Roman armies.
The Notitia Dignitatum lists 25 legiones palatinae , 70 legiones comitatenses , 47 legiones pseudocomitatenses and auxilia palatina in the field armies, and a further 47 legiones in the frontier armies.
The names also suggest that many new legions were formed from vexillationes or from old legions. In addition, there were 24 vexillationes palatini, 73 vexillationes comitatenses; other units in the Eastern limitanei and in the Western limitanei.
According to the late Roman writer Vegetius ' De Re Militari , each century had a ballista and each cohort had an onager , giving the legion a formidable siege train of 59 Ballistae and 10 Onagers, each manned by 10 libritors artillerymen and mounted on wagons drawn by oxen or mules.
In addition to attacking cities and fortifications, these would be used to help defend Roman forts and fortified camps castra as well.
They would even be employed on occasion, especially in the later Empire, as field artillery during battles or in support of river crossings.
Despite a number of organisational changes, the Legion system survived the fall of the Western Roman Empire.
It was continued within the Eastern Roman Empire until the 7th century, when reforms begun by Emperor Heraclius to counter the increasing need for soldiers resulted in the Theme system.
The rank of centurion was an officer grade that included many ranks, meaning centurions had very good prospects for promotion. The most senior centurion in a legion was known as the primus pilus first file or spear , who directly commanded the first century of the first cohort and commanded the whole first cohort when in battle.
Within the second to tenth cohorts, the commander of each cohort's first century was known as a pilus prior and was in command of his entire cohort when in battle.
The seniority of the pilus prior centurions was followed by the five other century commanders of the first cohort, who were known as primi ordines.
The centuries took their titles from the old use of the legion drawn up in three lines of battle using three classes of soldier. Each century would then hold a cross-section of this theoretical line, although these century titles were now essentially nominal.
Each of the three lines is then sub-divided within the century into a more forward and a more rear century. From the time of Gaius Marius onwards, legionaries received denarii a year equal to Sestertii ; this basic rate remained unchanged until Domitian , who increased it to denarii.
In spite of the steady inflation during the 2nd century, there was no further rise until the time of Septimius Severus , who increased it to denarii a year.
However, the soldiers did not receive all the money in cash, as the state deducted a clothing and food tax from their pay.
To this wage, a legionary on active campaign would hope to add the booty of war, from the bodies of their enemies and as plunder from enemy settlements.
Slaves could also be claimed from the prisoners of war and divided amongst the legion for later sale, which would bring in a sizeable supplement to their regular pay.
Later, under Caracalla , the praemia increased to 5, denarii. From BC onwards, each legion used an aquila eagle as its standard symbol. The symbol was carried by an officer known as aquilifer , and its loss was considered to be a very serious embarrassment, and often led to the disbanding of the legion itself.
Normally, this was because any legion incapable of regaining its eagle in battle was so severely mauled that it was no longer effective in combat.
When Caesar's troops hesitated to leave their ships for fear of the Britons, the aquilifer of the tenth legion threw himself overboard and, carrying the eagle, advanced alone against the enemy.
His comrades, fearing disgrace, 'with one accord, leapt down from the ship' and were followed by troops from the other ships. With the birth of the Roman Empire, the legions created a bond with their leader, the emperor himself.
Each legion had another officer, called imaginifer , whose role was to carry a pike with the imago image, sculpture of the emperor as pontifex maximus.
Each legion, furthermore, had a vexillifer who carried a vexillum or signum , with the legion name and emblem depicted on it, unique to the legion.
It was common for a legion to detach some sub-units from the main camp to strengthen other corps. In these cases, the detached subunits carried only the vexillum, and not the aquila, and were called, therefore, vexillationes.
A miniature vexillum, mounted on a silver base, was sometimes awarded to officers as a recognition of their service upon retirement or reassignment. Civilians could also be rewarded for their assistance to the Roman legions.
In return for outstanding service, a citizen was given an arrow without a head.
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The numbering of the legions is confusing, since several legions shared the same number with others. Augustus numbered the legions he founded himself from I, but also inherited numbers from his predecessors.
Each emperor normally numbered the legions he raised himself starting from I. However, even this practice was not consistently followed.
For example, Vespasian kept the same numbers as before for legions he raised from disbanded units. Trajan 's first legion was numbered XXX because there were 29 other legions in existence at the time it was raised; but the second Trajanic legion was given the sequential number II.
These three legions are without titles, suggesting that in disgrace their titles may have been deliberately forgotten or left unmentioned.
As a result of this somewhat chaotic evolution, the legion's title became necessary to distinguish between legions with the same number.
Legions often carried several titles, awarded after successive campaigns, normally by the ruling emperor e. XII Fulminata was also awarded: paterna fatherly , victrix victorious , antiqua venerable , certa constans reliable, steadfast and Galliena Gallienus '.
Pia fidelis loyal and faithful , fidelis constans and others were titles awarded to several legions, sometimes several times to the same legion.
Only the most established, commonly used titles are displayed on this table. Legions bearing the personal name of an emperor, or of his gens clan e.
Augusta , Flavia were either founded by that Emperor or awarded the name as a mark of special favour. This shows the castra base where the legion spent the longest period during the Principate.
Legions often shared the same base with other legions. Detachments of legions were often seconded for lengthy periods to other bases and provinces, as operational needs demanded.
Legions often sported more than one emblem at the same time, and occasionally changed them. Legions raised by Caesar mostly carried a bull emblem originally; those of Augustus mostly a Capricorn.
For legions that are documented into the 4th century and beyond, we do not know when or how they were terminated.
For legions disappearing from the record before , the reason certain or likely is given as:. Province names and borders are assumed throughout the Principate period as at , during the rule of Trajan , and after the annexation of Dacia and Arabia Petraea.
The map above shows provinces at the end of Trajan's reign, They are the same as in , except that Armenia and Mesopotamia have been annexed they were abandoned soon after Trajan's death ; and Pannonia has been split into two the split occurred c.
Diocletian reorganized the Roman army, in order to better counter the threat of the Germanic peoples of northern Europe as well as that of the Persians from the East.
The army was formed by border and field units. The border limitanei units were to occupy the limes , the structured border fortifications, and were formed by professional soldiers with an inferior training.
The field units were to stay well behind the border, and to move quickly where they were needed, with both offensive and defensive roles.
Field units were formed by elite soldiers with high-level training and weapons. They were further divided into:. These units usually numbered between and 2, soldiers and some of them kept their original numbering schemes.
The primary source for the legions of this era is the Notitia Dignitatum , a late 4th-century document containing all the civil and military offices of both halves of the Roman Empire revised in c.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Structural history. Army Unit types and ranks Decorations and punishments Legions.