RomanArmyTalk

Full Version: The Complete Roman Army.
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
Not sure if this has been reviewed before, but I'm too lazy to look through the archives. :mrgreen:

Anyways, I recently read The Complete Roman Army, by Adrian Goldsworthy. It was an excellent read. It covered all topics concerning the Roman military such as 'The life of a Roman soldier', 'The army at war' and 'The army of late antiquity'. It also has drawings and pictures of archaeological finds. It is good to use as a reference for armour, helmets and such. All in all it is an excellent source for all aspects of the Roman army.

4.5 out of 5.

Jake :-)
It's probably one of the books most often quoted here and least often criticised. It is intended for the general reader, of course, so it's short of footnotes and doesn't go into too much detail, but as an introduction to the subject it's very sound. Goldsworthy's earlier The Roman Army at War 100BC - AD200 provides rather a deeper (if less pretty) study.

Two older titles for comparison: Connelly's Greece and Rome at War and Warry's Warfare in the Classical World. Also general, and as the names suggest wider in focus, but both have some splendid illustrations.

You might want to look out for this future publication, advertised as a 'companion' to the Goldsworthy book and lauded by Lawrence Keppie, so it should be solid stuff:

The Complete Roman Legions
Quote:...and 'The army of late antiquity'. It also has drawings and pictures of archaeological finds. It is good to use as a reference for armour, helmets and such.

Does it depict late Roman soldiers as unarmored, as Ferrill, and an artist (name escapes me) did, or armored?
Quote:
Jake Harvey post=316949 Wrote:...and 'The army of late antiquity'. It also has drawings and pictures of archaeological finds. It is good to use as a reference for armour, helmets and such.

Does it depict late Roman soldiers as unarmored, as Ferrill, and an artist (name escapes me) did, or armored?
There's only one artistic depiction of Constantian troops, but it does show a soldier in mail (p.209). Within the text he discredits the idea (from Vegetius) that body armour was rare in this period (p205), and various photographs show modern reenactor's dress, including armour.

The book is an excellent guide for non-specialists, but the absence of footnotes or references is rather unhelpful. It's the sort of work that might benefit from more frequent updating...
Quote:... and lauded by Lawrence Keppie, so it should be solid stuff:The Complete Roman Legions
Hmm, a little bird tells me that only the last sentence of the blurb actually came from the good professor's pen. (My source? I wouldn't dream of saying. :wink: )
Quote:only the last sentence of the blurb actually came from the good professor's pen.
Ah! But he did endorse it then, just not so fulsomely? Perhaps more an error of presentation (by the Amazon editor?) rather than deliberate misinformation?
Quote:Perhaps more an error of presentation (by the Amazon editor?) rather than deliberate misinformation?
No idea. (I've probably said more than I should have! :oops: )
Quote: Within the text he discredits the idea (from Vegetius) that body armour was rare in this period (p205)

Sounds like Elton.