Full Version: 225 BC: Polybius\' Account of the Telamon Campaign
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Steven James has published another paper on It and his earlier paper can be accessed from this site

The abstract reads:

The aim of this paper is to show that Polybius’ levy for 225 BC and his numbers for the Roman army at Telamon are flawed, thereby highlighting the fact that Polybius did not properly understand the organisation and distribution methodology of the Roman army.
I've modified the Telamon campaign. My figure for Orosius was 600 men short of Orosius' original figure of 325,800 men. However, I forgot about the ancient historian’s habit of rounding the numbers so if the figure of 28,800 Campanian infantry was rounded to 29,000 infantry, then after adding the 5,400 Campanian cavalry this gives a total of 34,400 men, which is then multiplied by three for a total of 87,000 Campanians. Then when added with the rest, the final figure amounts to Orosius’ figure of 325,800 men consisting of:

Roman infantry 210000 men
Campanian infantry 87000 men
Roman cavalry 12600 men
Campanian cavalry 16200 men
Total 325800 men

It would appear Orosius is following Polybius in multiplying the number of Campanians by three.

Previously I’ve concluded for the Telamon campaign that there was in total fourteen legions levied (seven Roman and seven allied). This has been changed to twelve legions. By taking into account Polybius’ claim that the number of allied infantry was equal to that of the Roman legions, the problem becomes obvious. The twelve Roman legions listed by Polybius should be corrected to read six Roman legions and six allied legions. With the six Roman legions amounting to 30,000 men, Polybius’ figure of 30,000 allied infantry allocated to the each consular army and the reserve army represents the total number of allied infantry for six allied legions each of 5,000 men. In this manner Polybius had erroneously increased the number of Roman legions from six to twelve legions and the total number of allied infantry from 30,000 allied infantry to 90,000 allied infantry.

Following Roman protocol, each consul commanded four legions (two Roman and two allied), and a praetor two legions (one Roman and one allied), thereby giving a total of ten legions. For the praetor stationed in Etruria, Polybius has allocated the praetor with a force of 50,000 infantry and 4,000 cavalry, which equates to ten legions each of 5,000 men. This can only mean the 50,000 infantry Polybius has allocated to Etruria represents the total force of ten legions (five Roman and five allied) under the command of two consuls and one praetor present at the battle of Telamon. With ten legions operating in Etruria, this leaves the reserve army at Rome consisting of two legions (one Roman and one allied). In total, for the Telamon campaign twelve legions each of 4,800 men were levied, for a total of 64,800 men (57,600 infantry and 7,200 cavalry).

Roman Army
Infantry 57600 men
Roman cavalry 1800 men
Allied cavalry 5400 men
Total 64800 men

When the 57,600 infantry are multiplied by ten, the figure of 567,000 represents in the Pythagorean cosmos the distance from Earth to Mars (4½ tones). The 7,200 cavalry are governed by the Pythagorean zodiac and the five elements.