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References to late Roman army???
#16
(04-20-2017, 03:28 PM)Steven James Wrote: Ross wrote:

Why AD 192/3?
 
As the Roman saeculum represented life, death, and rebirth, after the passing of two saeculums, only then did the Romans increase the number of centuries in the tribes, and one of those dates is 192 AD, and in 193 AD, Septimus Severus conducted a levy throughout Italy. This is no coincidence, as Augustus was the last emperor that's reign occurred at the end of the passing of two saeculums....
Many thanks. I would tend to view Severus' levy as having more to do with the civil war. (Sev. had to re-fill the ranks of the legions from which he had drawn the new Praetorian Guard. The recruitment of legio II Parthica probably began shortly after he had secured Rome. And the equites singulares and urban cohorts were also bolstered.)
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#17
(04-20-2017, 05:36 PM)Ross Cowan Wrote: I would tend to view Severus' levy as having more to do with the civil war.

Were there not mass levies under Marcus Aurelius and Hadrian too?

On the subject of recruitment, though, I noticed this other interesting detail from the passio of St Mercurius:

"Now it happened at this time that, since barbarians had risen in war against the Romans, the emperors were readying an army suitable to stand in battle with them, and ordered even those units stationed in all the cities to join their alliance. Among those who arrived first from each city and land in preparation for this war, there also chanced the unit of those called the Martenses who were from Armenia Prima and were under the command of a tribune by the name of Saturninus.

(...) The king said, "Tell me your race and your homeland." Mercurius said, "If you want to learn my race and my native land, I will tell you". My father was called Gordianus, a Scythian by race. He served in the unit of the Martenses"... The king said, "Were you called this name by you parents, or were you called Mercurius in the army ?" The martyr said, "I was called Mercurius by the tribune in the army. My father called me Philopater."

This supposedly happened "when Decius and Vallerianus reigned in the great city of Rome", which we can probably discount (the same odd dating occurs in the passio of St Polyeuctus, apparently, supposedly a soldier of XII Fulminata, so one copied the other).

The situation at the beginning of the quote, with 'units stationed in cities' (limitanei, or billeted field army units?) sounds like something from the 4th or 5th century. And the Martenses, again, are from the ND. I haven't seen any other suggestions that they were recruited or stationed in Armenia. But Mercurius's father served in the same unit, and was a 'Scythian' (Goth?).

Might the renaming of Philopater as Mercurius (by the tribune!) suggest that he was given citizenship on enlistment? Why else would his name be changed like that? But if his father was a soldier surely he would have been a citizen already... unless we're talking about an auxilia unit that was regularly recruiting from non citizens, and Gordianus was a sort of nom-de-guerre used by a barbarian who had never gained citizenship by service?
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#18
(04-20-2017, 07:44 PM)Nathan Ross Wrote:
(04-20-2017, 05:36 PM)Ross Cowan Wrote: I would tend to view Severus' levy as having more to do with the civil war.

Were there not mass levies under Marcus Aurelius and Hadrian too?
Indeed. The dilectus was held whenever substantial numbers of recruits were required.
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#19
Ross wrote:

I would tend to view Severus' levy as having more to do with the civil war. (Sev. Had to re-fill the ranks of the legions from which he had drawn the new Praetorian Guard. The recruitment of legio II Parthica probably began shortly after he had secured Rome. And the equites singulares and urban cohorts were also bolstered.)
 
My research into the Roman tribal system shows that to increase the number of Praetorian Guard and urban cohorts, the number of legions has to be increased. The formula is the number of legions levied determines the number of praetorian cohorts, and the size of the legions levied determines the number of men in a praetorian cohort. Under Severus, both the size of the legion and the size of the Praetorian cohort are increased.
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#20
(04-20-2017, 07:33 AM)Steven James Wrote: Historians use certain numbers if they conform to their theory. I do not work that way, I use all the numbers I can, and then I let the numbers do the talking. 
[..]
Nothing comes from a vacuum, and these authors are definitely drawing on correct sources. The sizes for the Theban legion are correct; it is Vegetius that includes a simply mathematical mistake. Make that correction and the numbers are one and the same.

Concerning your treatment of Vegetius I cannot help but notice that, at least at some level, the above statements are in disagreement. Either the numbers from a source are to be used as they are or they are incorrect. You need to apply one rule over all your sources. Supposing that one source made a mistake because the numbers do not fit your theory whereas other sources are deemed to be useable because their numbers do fit your theory sounds like a faulty methodology to me.

(04-20-2017, 07:33 AM)Steven James Wrote: Mathematics has a language all of its own and it can tell a powerful story.
I think I agree with that statement, but it sure matters how you would apply it.
Coming back to my earlier comment, sound methodology should look at every source within its own class. Vegetius is a different kind of author than someone who writes about the miracles of a saint. Hard facts seemingly presented in such sources must be weighed accordingly.
_________________________________
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR: Forum rules
FECTIO Late Roman Society
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
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#21
Robert wrote:

Supposing that one source made a mistake because the numbers do not fit your theory whereas other sources are deemed to be useable because their numbers do fit your theory sounds like a faulty methodology to me.
 
I am making comparisons to the numbers given by the Theban legion and Vegetius. A Theban legion of 6600 omits the cavalry officers. The Theban legion of 6660 equates to 6000 infantry and 660 cavalry. Now Vegetius allocates 66 cavalry to cohorts 2 to 10, but the Theban legion would allocate 66 cavalry to cohorts 1 to 10. Vegetius has 726 cavalry, which is 66 cavalry more than the Theban legion. Therefore, Vegetius has allocated 66 cavalry to 11 cohorts, and the Theban legion 66 cavalry to 10 cohorts. So how is that a faulty methodology?
 
Robert wrote:
Coming back to my earlier comment, sound methodology should look at every source within its own class. Vegetius is a different kind of author than someone who writes about the miracles of a saint. Hard facts seemingly presented in such sources must be weighed accordingly.
 
I would also add the danger of being too dismissive when investigating sources. This is a common trait relating the Theban legion by historians. People let emotions get in the way. The numbers in the martyrologies maintain continuity, and when correlated with Ammianius and others start filling in the jigsaw, or in your words weighed accordingly.

The history of the Roman legion is there in the primary sources for all to see. It starts with legions of 2400 men, then 3600 men, which is increased to 4800 men with the light armed infantry, then it increases to 4800 men (Augustus) and then finally to 6000 men. That is the end of the system and Rome has completed its 12 ages of man. As the system has ended, Rome begins again at legions of 2400 men or which, and this is my theory consists of 1200 are iuniores and 1200 are seniores.
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#22
(04-21-2017, 10:16 AM)Steven James Wrote: I am making comparisons to the numbers given by the Theban legion and Vegetius. A Theban legion of 6600 omits the cavalry officers. The Theban legion of 6660 equates to 6000 infantry and 660 cavalry. Now Vegetius allocates 66 cavalry to cohorts 2 to 10, but the Theban legion would allocate 66 cavalry to cohorts 1 to 10. Vegetius has 726 cavalry, which is 66 cavalry more than the Theban legion. Therefore, Vegetius has allocated 66 cavalry to 11 cohorts, and the Theban legion 66 cavalry to 10 cohorts. So how is that a faulty methodology?

The methodology is faulty because how you regard and use the sources.
No historian would equate Vegetius, a treatise on military matters, with the religious writings of the saint's lives, from often unknown authors, written often at an uncertain date and with a very different subject. The latter would only by chance offer details of a military nature and far more often look for religious symbolism. Yet you regard them as equal. 

Even more so, you deem the number from the martyriums as superior. However, as Nathan already noted, there is no single number for 'the' Theban legion in those martyriums, the numbers being 6600, 6666, 6660, and 6585 men in different writings. Yet you glean from them a single number (6600), without distinction between infantry and cavalry (which you then add yourself) to capmpare with Vegetius. But how can they be compared? Any comparison between Vegetius and 'the Theban legion' when it comes to allocating cavalry to cohorts is a fictional one (as 'the' Theban legion does not seem to exist, and therefore your conclusion that Vegetius 'must have made a mistake' cannot be based on any comparison him and the martyriums. 

So where is the applied methodology? I fail to see it. 

(04-21-2017, 10:16 AM)Steven James Wrote: I would also add the danger of being too dismissive when investigating sources. This is a common trait relating the Theban legion by historians. People let emotions get in the way.

Of course that may be true. It's easy to underestimate a religious story about some saint in relation to some Roman unit which so far has eluded any fixed location.
So lets take a closer look at them. Apart from the long time between the subject of the stories and the writing of them, if you look at all the elements besides that number of troops, it becomes quite clear that the martyriums are religous myths or at best religious legends. I think Michael Speidel's conclusion that the 'Theban Legion' is not an actual unit caught up in a story of a saint, but a vessel that was created to explain a later find with a large number of martyrs.
https://www.academia.edu/31147115/Die_Th...ische_Heer

(04-21-2017, 10:16 AM)Steven James Wrote: As the system has ended, Rome begins again at legions of 2400 men or which, and this is my theory consists of 1200 are iuniores and 1200 are seniores.

Apart from the difficulty to explain why Roman society in a period where Christianity was hacking away at the root of the old pagan beliefs they would a) still rigourously follow that by then ancient system and b) carry out what must have been an enormous reorganisation of the army as a result, is (to me at least) beyond belief.
Also, stating that 'the' late Roman unit consisted of a fixed number 2400 and that these were equally divided into 1200 seniores and iuniores contains too many assumptions. We still come across larger units, next to the smaller units of the 'new model army' long after your 'time of change' had passed.
_________________________________
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR: Forum rules
FECTIO Late Roman Society
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
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#23
Robert wrote:

No historian would equate Vegetius, a treatise on military matters, with the religious writings of the saint's lives, from often unknown authors, written often at an uncertain date and with a very different subject.
 
The I strongly recommend that historians change their methods.
 
Robert wrote:
Even more so, you deem the number from the martyriums as superior. However, as Nathan already noted, there is no single number for 'the' Theban legion in those martyriums, the numbers being 6600, 6666, 6660, and 6585 men in different writings.
 
My method is to understand what those varying numbers for the Theban legion are about. As I have already stated, the difference between the Theban legion numbers and Vegetius is Vegetius has based his legion on 11 cohorts, whereas the cavalry for the Theban legion has been based on 10 cohorts.
 
Robert wrote:
Yet you glean from them a single number (6600), without distinction between infantry and cavalry (which you then add yourself) to capmpare with Vegetius.
 
I used two numbers from the Theban legion not one. Jonathon Roth, a historian, in his paper on the Roman legion took a number from Sertorius of 5600 men for a legion and concluded that the figure consisted of 5200 infantry and 400 cavalry. Roth had nothing to compare it with,. Does he find examples of 5666, or 5550, or 5585, no he doesn't so has nothing to work with. However, with the Theban legion numbers, in which Nathan has also claimed they are close to Vegetius’ number, we do have Vegetius for a comparison. Any historian would investigate such data, but they don’t because of their obsessions with the legend and not the numbers.
 
Robert wrote:
But how can they be compared? Any comparison between Vegetius and 'the Theban legion' when it comes to allocating cavalry to cohorts is a fictional one (as 'the' Theban legion does not seem to exist, and therefore your conclusion that Vegetius 'must have made a mistake' cannot be based on any comparison him and the martyriums.
 
Well this is a major fault with your methodology. You’re stuck on the authenticity of the martyrdom of the Theban legion. I do not care if the story is fact or fiction. I am only concerned about the numbers given for the size of the Theban legion.
 
Robert wrote:
So where is the applied methodology? I fail to see it.
 
Well that is something that has not change with you for years.
 
Robert wrote:
besides that number of troops, it becomes quite clear that the martyriums are religous myths or at best religious legends.
 
It is about the number of troops, not the legend. You cannot dismiss the probability (without investigation) that the authors may have drawn on 4th century military numbers and later, some used 5th century military numbers for the same story.
 
Robert wrote:
I think Michael Speidel's conclusion that the 'Theban Legion' is not an actual unit caught up in a story of a saint, but a vessel that was created to explain a later find with a large number of martyrs.
 
Again, it is not about the existence of the Theban legion, it is about the numbers that have been allocated to the Theban legion.
 
Robert wrote:
Apart from the difficulty to explain why Roman society in a period where Christianity was hacking away at the root of the old pagan beliefs they would a) still rigourously follow that by then ancient system and b) carry out what must have been an enormous reorganisation of the army as a result, is (to me at least) beyond belief.
 
Constantine move the government to Constantinople, is that not beyond belief? Any good historian needs to put his beliefs (emotions) aside when researching a subject. If the Romans had 6000 man legions and wanted to have more but smaller legions of 1200 men, then the 6000 man legion is divided into 5 parts. Nothing difficult about it. The Roman cavalry is just as easy.
 
Robert wrote:
Also, stating that 'the' late Roman unit consisted of a fixed number 2400 and that these were equally divided into 1200 seniores and iuniores contains too many assumptions. We still come across larger units, next to the smaller units of the 'new model army' long after your 'time of change' had passed.
 
I am aware that Roman legions have large unit organisations and small unit organisations. My 2400 man legion has been compared with the figures (small and large) in the primary sources. Also I then compare the numbers to roman doctrine, something I have learnt about. So far the numbers hold up.
 
As to a 2400 man legion being made up of 1200 seniores and 1200 iuniores, that is an assumption based on endless experiments. When I read the works of many historians, I come across countless assumptions made by historians. Does this rule only apply to them and not to me? The seniores and iuniores is my assumption.
 
When I established the tribal system from the Servian constitution, I knew I had opened a door to new discoveries. That is one fact you cannot take from me, the tribal system, it time frame, and the legion sizes all match the primary sources, both religious and militarily. Those numbers given for the Theban legion have been taken from 4th century military sources. They include the cavalry, some include the officers. All of them, including the 6585 figure can be explained as to what they about and how they arrived at that number.
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#24
(04-22-2017, 03:01 AM)Steven James Wrote: As I have already stated, the difference between the Theban legion numbers and Vegetius is Vegetius has based his legion on 11 cohorts, whereas the cavalry for the Theban legion has been based on 10 cohorts.
 

This is not strictly correct. Vegetius' legion is based on ten cohorts but the First Cohort is milliary. It is double-sized both as to infantry and cavalry. You may remember this post, in which I offered an explanation as to how Vegetius arrived at his figures:

http://www.romanarmytalk.com/rat/thread-...#pid311753

As I see it, you can only bring his figures for the number of infantry into line with those for the Theban Legion by 'correcting' his five-century cohorts to six centuries, making them all quingenary and ignoring the officers. Manipulation on this scale makes his figures meaningless but, as you know, I am highly sceptical of the existence of his legio antiqua anyway.
Michael King Macdona

And do as adversaries do in law, -
Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
(The Taming of the Shrew: Act 1, Scene 2)
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#25
Renatus wrote:

As I see it, you can only bring his figures for the number of infantry into line with those for the Theban Legion by 'correcting' his five-century cohorts to six centuries, making them all quingenary and ignoring the officers.
 
Vegetius also claimed a legion numbered 6,100 men and 6,000 men. The legion does have 6 centuries to a cohort, but no one seems to be bothered understanding why it ends up at 5 centuries per cohort.
 
Renatus wrote:
Manipulation on this scale makes his figures meaningless but, as you know, I am highly sceptical of the existence of his legio antiqua anyway.
 
So as I understand it, I am manipulating the figures, whereas your interpretation is just explaining the figures with no manipulation whatsoever? Why is it that people look at the primary sources only see the obvious? You also have failed to explain Vegetius’s 6,000 man legion, which would mean altering your figures for your 6100 man legion.
 
 
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#26
(04-23-2017, 06:09 AM)Steven James Wrote: Vegetius also claimed a legion numbered 6,100 men and 6,000 men.

Vegetius states (Veg. 2. 2. 3) that the legion traditionally comprised 6000 soldiers, sometimes more. Later, after going into the figures, he states (Veg. 2. 6. 9-10) that it should not comprise less than 6100 infantry and 726 cavalry but could be increased by adding more milliary cohorts. As I have argued elsewhere, he derived his information from disparate and contradictory sources and attempted to reconcile them but recognised that he had not always been successful.

(04-23-2017, 06:09 AM)Steven James Wrote: The legion does have 6 centuries to a cohort, but no one seems to be bothered understanding why it ends up at 5 centuries per cohort.

I have, so far as Vegetius is concerned (see the third paragraph of my post linked above). He has ten centuries in his First Cohort and knows the titles of five centurions. The cohort is double-sized and from this he extrapolates that the remaining cohorts contain five centuries, also commanded by five centurions.

(04-23-2017, 06:09 AM)Steven James Wrote: So as I understand it, I am manipulating the figures, whereas your interpretation is just explaining the figures with no manipulation whatsoever?

I was using 'you' in the general, not the specific, sense. If you prefer, I will rephrase the offending sentence: 'As I see it, one can only bring his figures for the number of infantry into line etc.' In my explanation, as far as I am aware I was using only figures derived from Vegetius. If I have changed anything, please let me know.


(04-23-2017, 06:09 AM)Steven James Wrote: You also have failed to explain Vegetius’s 6,000 man legion, which would mean altering your figures for your 6100 man legion.

See above.
Michael King Macdona

And do as adversaries do in law, -
Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
(The Taming of the Shrew: Act 1, Scene 2)
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#27
Michael wrote:

He (Vegetius) has ten centuries in his First Cohort and knows the titles of five centurions. The cohort is double-sized and from this he extrapolates that the remaining cohorts contain five centuries, also commanded by five centurions.
 
What is the advantage of having a double sized cohort?
 
Michael wrote:
In my explanation, as far as I am aware I was using only figures derived from Vegetius. If I have changed anything, please let me know.
 
What if the decanus was not additional to the contubernium, but included in the 10 men (9 + 1)? Vegetius (2 19) does mention 10 man sections doing sentry. In total you have 550 decanii, in your legion. Don’t you think it is strange that the Romans only needed 1 centurion and 1 optio to command a century of 80 men, but now need 10 additional officers to command a century of 100 men? Well I find it strange, and I find the legion to be over commanded, with a total of 600 officers. The 4800 man legion has a ratio of 40 infantry to one officer (centurion or optio), which equates to each officer commanding half a century, whereas your Vegetius legion of 5500 infantry and 600 officers has a ratio of 9 point 1 infantry to 1 officer.
 
Following your example I could claim the Theban legion figure of 6600 men could represented 6000 infantry and 600 decanii, and the Theban legion of 6660 could represented 6000 infantry, 600 decanii and 60 centurions. I have faced this dilemma years ago.
 
Also Vegetius mentions 100 triarius prior in the first cohort, but your breakdown of the Vegetius legions does not explain why the first cohort is missing the triarius posterior. Also you do not explain how there are units of hastati and principes containing 150 men. These are important factors and need to be taken into consideration when dealing with the Vegetius legion. They are vital clues.
 
According to Vegetius, each century had its own carroballista manned by 11 men. I noticed you have not factored these men into your equations. As Vegetius claims each legion had 55 carroballista, this amounts to 605 men, and when subtracted from the total of 6100 men, leaves a residue of 5495 men, which is 5 men short of your figure of 5500 infantry. However, if I add the 605 artillerymen to the 5500 infantry the result is 6105 men.
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#28
Steven wrote: 
The I strongly recommend that historians change their methods
.

 
I know they will not, because any decent historian knows you can’t treat every source equally. Details from a myth are not a trustworthy as similar details from a chronicle, a treatise, etc. Amateurs will try to discuss Roman history with you while using material written during Medieval times, or information from later poetry, or from myths and legends. Historians will not because they know better. That IS methodology for you.

Using the story of ‘Hans Brinker or the Silver Skates’
 
will not get you reliable information about the thickness of seadykes in The Netherlands.
 
Steven wrote:
As I have already stated, the difference between the Theban legion numbers and Vegetius is Vegetius has based his legion on 11 cohorts, whereas the cavalry for the Theban legion has been based on 10 cohorts.

 
The fact that the numbers from ‘the Theban legion’ (which is a mythical unit) seem close to Vegetius’ numbers is of course no reason to reason to suppose that both are the same. Also, I could be mistaken but I don’t suppose that any of the martyriums or other myths about the ‘the Theban legion’ presents the reader with a list of cohorts and cavalry.

Steven wrote:
Any historian would investigate such data, but they don’t because of their obsessions with the legend and not the numbers
.

 
Of course historians have investigated the martyriums for their evidence, but as they are not obsessed with the legend they aren’t afraid to mistrust any information presented in them, and to discard it accordingly.
 
Steven wrote:
I do not care if the story is fact or fiction. I am only concerned about the numbers given for the size of the Theban legion.

 
That I already noted. As a result, at least this part of your study, being based on fiction rather than fact, will not be accepted by historians. Which is a real shame I think. If you would lave the dubious material alone you may have less to compare but your conclusions would gain credibility.
 
Steven wrote:
You cannot dismiss the probability (without investigation) that the authors may have drawn on 4th century military numbers and later, some used 5th century military numbers for the same story.

 
Of course I can dismiss it. The likelihood of writers of martyriums (being quite fake stories) suddenly feeling the urge to look up military sources for just THAT part of their myths is so unlikely that every serious researchers must cast it aside.
It’s like the author of the Hans Brinker story being interested in the possibility of boys holding back the sea but sticking their little finger in the aforementioned earthwork.
 
Steven wrote:
Again, it is not about the existence of the Theban legion, it is about the numbers that have been allocated to the Theban legion
.

 
You haven’t read Michael Speidel’s article have you? Shame, it’s really interesting and even goes into reasons behind the origin of the myth.
 
Steven wrote:
Constantine move the government to Constantinople, is that not beyond belief? Any good historian needs to put his beliefs (emotions) aside when researching a subject. If the Romans had 6000 man legions and wanted to have more but smaller legions of 1200 men, then the 6000 man legion is divided into 5 parts.

 
I don’t see the move to Constantinople as something beyond belief. I would have had a difficulty believing that however if anyone would claim the sole reason for the move would have been some ancient mathematical system which somehow (without the Romans mentioning that regularly) dictated the actions of the Romans is such a profound way.
If the Romans want to split their legions, no problem with me. But if you claim they would only do that for the sole reason of that ancient mathematical system (and not purely strategic reasons) than indeed, I say that is beyond belief.
 
Steven wrote:

My 2400 man legion has been compared with the figures (small and large) in the primary sources. Also I then compare the numbers to roman doctrine, something I have learnt about. So far the numbers hold up.
 
I’m not concerned with the numbers per se, although I have come across widely different numbers as well. My problem is that your Roman ‘doctrine’ has nothing to do with an evolving military doctrine but everything with a never-changing ancient religious one. Roman society changed over the centuries, so did its empire and its military- yet you insist that this doctrine never changed?
_________________________________
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR: Forum rules
FECTIO Late Roman Society
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
[Image: artgroepbutton.jpg]
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#29
(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote: What is the advantage of having a double sized cohort?

You'd have to ask Hyginus or Vegetius that.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote: What if the decanus was not additional to the contubernium, but included in the 10 men (9 + 1)? Vegetius (2 19) does mention 10 man sections doing sentry.

You have already drawn attention to Veg. 2. 25. 2 in which Vegetius mentions an eleven-strong contubernium. This surely means ten men plus one decanus.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote: In total you have 550 decanii, in your legion.

Not my legion; Vegetius' legion which, as you know, I do not believe in.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote: Don’t you think it is strange that the Romans only needed 1 centurion and 1 optio to command a century of 80 men, but now need 10 additional officers to command a century of 100 men? Well I find it strange, and I find the legion to be over commanded, with a total of 600 officers. The 4800 man legion has a ratio of 40 infantry to one officer (centurion or optio), which equates to each officer commanding half a century, whereas your Vegetius legion of 5500 infantry and 600 officers has a ratio of 9 point 1 infantry to 1 officer.

You speak as if they all had the same degree of responsibility. This is obviously not so. There is a hierarchy. The centurion had command of the whole unit; the optio was his assistant and probably did not have an independent command; the decanus had charge of ten men but took his orders from those above him.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote:  
Following your example I could claim the Theban legion figure of 6600 men could represented 6000 infantry and 600 decanii, and the Theban legion of 6660 could represented 6000 infantry, 600 decanii and 60 centurions.

That would work. Whether it actually existed is, of course, another matter.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote:  
Also Vegetius mentions 100 triarius prior in the first cohort, but your breakdown of the Vegetius legions does not explain why the first cohort is missing the triarius posterior. Also you do not explain how there are units of hastati and principes containing 150 men.

Not here, perhaps, but I did in the paper that I sent you.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote:  
According to Vegetius, each century had its own carroballista manned by 11 men. I noticed you have not factored these men into your equations.

No, I assume those men to represent one of the contubernia in the century in the same way as a platoon in the British army used to have a Bren gun section within the unit, not separate from it.

(04-24-2017, 04:14 AM)Steven James Wrote: As Vegetius claims each legion had 55 carroballista, this amounts to 605 men, and when subtracted from the total of 6100 men, leaves a residue of 5495 men, which is 5 men short of your figure of 5500 infantry. However, if I add the 605 artillerymen to the 5500 infantry the result is 6105 men.

You are not comparing like with like. The 605 men include the decani; the 6100 men include the centurions and decani; the 5500 infantry do not include any officers.
Michael King Macdona

And do as adversaries do in law, -
Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
(The Taming of the Shrew: Act 1, Scene 2)
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#30
Robert wrote:

I know they will not, because any decent historian knows you can’t treat every source equally.
 
That is because they have developed this ridiculous “reliability” list, so Polybius is more trustworthy than Livy, and Livy is more reliable than Appian, and so it goes on. Every ancient historian brings something to the table, and in equal measure. So going by your measure, I am not a decent historian. Time will tell.
 
Robert wrote:
The fact that the numbers from ‘the Theban legion’ (which is a mythical unit) seem close to Vegetius’ numbers is of course no reason to reason to suppose that both are the same.
 
How about instead of skirting around the edges, you examine the numbers instead of being so dismissive without any scientific investigation?
 
Robert wrote:
Also, I could be mistaken but I don’t suppose that any of the martyriums or other myths about the ‘the Theban legion’ presents the reader with a list of cohorts and cavalry.
 
What you are saying is if the primary sources do not specifically mention cohorts or cavalry for the Theban legion, then I am wrong. Taking that attitude, then RAT should be close down, as there are hundreds of threads making assumptions or conclusions based on building evidence from other sources.
 
Robert wrote:
Of course historians have investigated the martyriums for their evidence, but as they are not obsessed with the legend they aren’t afraid to mistrust any information presented in them, and to discard it accordingly.
 
Can you forget the legend stuff for a second? Nathan has replied that the martyries could be drawing on 4th or 5th century sources relating to the numbers of soldiers, yet you have not raised this issue with him.
 
Robert wrote:
That I already noted. As a result, at least this part of your study, being based on fiction rather than fact, will not be accepted by historians. Which is a real shame I think. If you would lave the dubious material alone you may have less to compare but your conclusions would gain credibility.
 
As you have not to my knowledge read my entire opus, you cannot make such claims as to what historians will or will not accept. My view is they will not accept anything that is contrary to their theories or can disprove their theories.
 
Robert wrote:
Of course I can dismiss it. The likelihood of writers of martyriums (being quite fake stories) suddenly feeling the urge to look up military sources for just THAT part of their myths is so unlikely that every serious researchers must cast it aside.
 
That is ridiculous! If I wanted to make my fake story have some basis of fact, then I would use fact. Prove to me Robert the martyries did not use military sources, after all, some of those martyrs were supposedly soldiers.
 
Robert wrote:
I don’t see the move to Constantinople as something beyond belief. I would have had a difficulty believing that however if anyone would claim the sole reason for the move would have been some ancient mathematical system which somehow (without the Romans mentioning that regularly) dictated the actions of the Romans is such a profound way.
 
I never said the mathematical system made them move to Constantinople. You are not fully aware of how the mathematical system works, so therefore, you cannot make an accurate judgement.
 
Robert wrote:
If the Romans want to split their legions, no problem with me. But if you claim they would only do that for the sole reason of that ancient mathematical system (and not purely strategic reasons) than indeed, I say that is beyond belief.
 
That is your incorrect interpretation of how you think the system works. I have been explaining the method they used, or how they applied the tribal system to creating smaller and more numerous legions. Nothing comes from a vacuum.
 
Robert wrote:
My problem is that your Roman ‘doctrine’ has nothing to do with an evolving military doctrine but everything with a never-changing ancient religious one. Roman society changed over the centuries, so did its empire and its military- yet you insist that this doctrine never changed?
 
I’ve stated it does change. When the tribal system is increased, the size of the legions is increased. That is change. However, I understand you do not fully understand how the system works as you have not read everything I have written on the subject. It is very simple, the Romans have a tribal system that consists of 35 tribes, and over time they increase the size of the tribes. Livy specifically states this is what happens as he says; the centuries in the days of Servius Tullius had doubled by his day, and he is right. The tribes begin with 12 centuries per tribe and in Livy’s time it is 24 centuries per tribe. My research shows that when the size of the tribes increased, so did the size of the legion.
 
That is the difference with my research. I bring something new to the table, and that is the tribal system and how it works. Over 1000 years of primary source material matches the tribal system, and that is not coincidence. In 192 AD, at the end of the fifth saeculum, the Romans can increase the legion to 6000 men accompanied by 600 cavalry. The Theban legion, Vegetius, and Isidore are all on the same page.

Michael wrote:

You'd have to ask Hyginus or Vegetius that.
 
Both are writing about the billeting arrangements of the camp.
 
Michael wrote:
You have already drawn attention to Veg. 2. 25. 2 in which Vegetius mentions an eleven-strong contubernium. This surely means ten men plus one decanus.
 
However, (2 19) just has 10 man sections.
 
Michael wrote:
Not my legion; Vegetius' legion which, as you know, I do not believe in.
 
It’s is your interpretation of Vegetius. Had you elected to follow Vegetius that a section had 10 men and not 11 men, then the outcome would be different. Had you based you total on Vegetius’ 6000 man legion and not the 6100 man legion, again the outcome would be different.
 
Michael wrote:
You speak as if they all had the same degree of responsibility. This is obviously not so. There is a hierarchy. The centurion had command of the whole unit; the optio was his assistant and probably did not have an independent command; the decanus had charge of ten men but took his orders from those above him.
 
That answers still does not address the fact that 9 point 1 men are governed by 1 officer. This is unprecedented in Roman military history, and should draw the attention of any historian. The 4800 man legion has a ratio of 40 infantry to 1 officer, so why the dramatic increase of 550 officers to command an additional 1,200 men? That is the sort of questions people should be asking.
 
Michael wrote:
That would work. Whether it actually existed is, of course, another matter.
 
Isidore has a legion of 6000 men organised into 12 cohorts, which is similar to Vegetius and his double first cohort legion. If 5500 men can be organised into 10 cohorts, with the first cohort being double, theoretically the legion could amount to 11 cohorts each of 500 men. What if Isidore is using the legion’s billeting organisation when in camp? Has anyone gone down that road? I have.
 
Unlike yourself, I believe the Vegetius legion, or a legion of 6000 men did exist. There is a lot of evidence to support it.
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