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References to late Roman army???
#76
About legionis X alae:

Q. Herennius Silvius Maximus c. AD 170

Pir2 H 131 Tituli 4 (1982) 179; Tituli 5 (1982) 160

CIL IX 2213 (Telesia, Italia, Regio IV)

Q(uinto) Herennio Silvio Maximo, c(larissimo) v(iro), legat(o) leg(ionis) II Italicae et alae Antoni(ni)anae…

From:

https://tyche-journal.at/tyche/index.php...ew/342/458 (Page 113 (13) )
Reply
#77
(05-14-2017, 12:18 PM)Julian de Vries Wrote: Q(uinto) Herennio Silvio Maximo, c(larissimo) v(iro), legat(o) leg(ionis) II Italicae et alae Antoni(ni)anae…

It's a odd inscription - and it seems there's some debate about whether 'et alae' is correct, or a misreading of part of the legion title or honorific, perhaps. (Judge for yourself!)

But if we take the above reading to be correct (and it certainly looks that way), Maximus seems to be commanding a legion and ala (plural?) - perhaps brigaded together, or stationed in the same fortress?

However, the ala(e) is not part of the legion, as it is listed separately.
Nathan Ross
Reply
#78
(05-14-2017, 01:14 PM)Nathan Ross Wrote: ala (plural?)

No, genitive singular.
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)
Reply
#79
Nathan wrote:

I didn't introduce it - Vegetius did. And I provided evidence above.
 
Vegetius (2 8) has 400 men in 4 centuries, he also has the first centurion of the hastati command 200 hastati in 2 centuries, the princeps of the first cohort commanded 150 men, and the second centurion of the hastati also commanded 150 men, with the triarius prior commanding 100 men. There is no double century here.
 
Vegetius then states that the 10 centuries of the first cohort were controlled by 5 centurions, which does not automatically imply double centuries as the above command arrangement disputes this. Vegetius also states that there were centurions who looked after single centuries.
 
I would not be confident in just taking his mention of 10 centuries in the first cohort and dividing this by the 5 centurions in the first cohort and claim this was proof of a double century. I would want more evidence. Also I have found that on many occasions the Romans only give the number of senior centurions, and omit the secondary centurions.
 
Also you are taking Vegetius’ legion to support your case of a 5,600 man legion. Where’s the proof they are compatible? If you believe they are, then doesn’t this prove the legion is based on the same organisation that is being enlarged to create larger sized legions?
 
Also I do find it amusing that those on this forum who do not believe in the authenticity of the Vegetius legion do use his organisation numbers when they need to make a statement.
 
Nathan wrote:
There appear to be far too many men on the Vindolanda rolls for the centurions to be each commanding 80-man centuries. We see the same thing at Dura.
 
Maybe historians need to re-examine their present understanding to determine if these records are discussing another organisation that historians have misunderstood. Concerning the Cohors XX Palmyrenorum and the numbers listed for Dura, Fink writes:
 
“Such tremendous variations (in the numbes), with the strength of the unit at one point only about two- thirds of the theoretical norm, then trebling within a year or two, then falling off by about one-fourth of the new total, emphasize the need for caution in formulating general statements in regard to  the Roman army.” (The Cohors XX Palmyrenorum, a Cohors Equitata Miliaria, Robert Fink, Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association, Vol. 78 (1947) pp. 159-170
 
Nathan wrote:
If you want to start incorporating (non citizen) cavalry alae into (citizen) legions, or equites legionis into cavalry alae, you'd better have some pretty spectacular new material to back it up!
 
Are you seriously saying the Romans, when required, did not or could not do this? Interesting how Julian has easily found a reference of a legion and an ala.
 
Nathan wrote:
Nope. Cerealis is commanding a mixed force of detachments (Josephus many times refers to numbers of 'select men'). There is no evidence here for the size of individual units.
 
You are being too general in your approach. Remember we are discussing the Cerealis reference. Does Josephus clearly state that Cerealis’ men were hand-picked?
 
Nathan wrote:
The legion fort at Inchtuthill provides clear evidence of a doubled first cohort for the post-Flavian period.
 
Have you studied the material in the primary sources related to the veterans? If, when required, two cohorts of veterans could be allocated to each legion, then when in camp, where would you put those veteran cohorts?
 
Nathan wrote:
The idea of combining auxiliary cavalry and legion cavalry into the same alae - even into the same turmae - is entirely opposed to all evidence.
 
Hidden in unit totals can be the evidence, which has been overlooked. However, I wanted to show how Hyginus could have arrived at 1000 cavalry having 24 squadrons of 40 men based on him adding the equites legionis to a 16 squadron ala. I am allowed to do this, and the sky won’t fall in. Then I take this information and see if it has traction and go from there.
 
Nathan wrote:
Your figure of 40 men in a turma comes from dividing Hyginus's 240 equites by 6.
 
No, it comes from Hyginus (16) and the 1,000 cavalry and rounding down. Then it has been applied to the extra cavalry numbers and cavalry space allocation. His cavalry space allocation I have found can be traced back through the republic.
 
Nathan wrote:
So as Hyginus is not implying that there are 40 men in a turma, there is no need to start adding extra men to make up the numbers.
 
I am claiming Hyginus has made his calculations based on 40 men to a squadron by adding the equites legionis to an ala, and dividing by 16 squadrons to an ala. I am not changing my view on that as I have found more evidence.
 
Nathan wrote:
You have not explained what you meant by the figures being 'corrected' in your previous post.
 
My conclusion of being corrected to 40 men. There is more information in Hyginus that can be processed, like his numbers for the extra cavalry, his Praetorian cavalry and his spacing arrangements for the cavalry to determine how it holds up......that is that Hyginus believes a cavalry squadron had 40 men.
 
I have found that sometimes it is better to just follow the maths and put any preconceived notions about the Roman army aside. There is a lot to gain by being objective.
 
Reply
#80
Steven wrote:
Also I do find it amusing that those on this forum who do not believe in the authenticity of the Vegetius legion do use his organisation numbers when they need to make a statement.
I find it equally amusing coming from someone who uses every source as if they are equally trustworthy.


Maybe historians need to re-examine their present understanding to determine if these records are discussing another organisation that historians have misunderstood. You write a lot about what all historians should do. Thousands of professionals have been wrong for decades or even half a century?


Steven wrote:
Fink writes: “Such tremendous variations (in the numbes), with the strength of the unit at one point only about two- thirds of the theoretical norm, then trebling within a year or two, then falling off by about one-fourth of the new total, emphasize the need for caution in formulating general statements in regard to  the Roman army.”


I think that’s very good advice. Any number mentioned in a source concerning a unit of troops could well be based on the numbers available on that very occasion, NOT on the paper strength. Anyone engaged in using such numbers as proof for (or against) a general system regarding the Roman army should be well aware of this caution.


Steven wrote:
Are you seriously saying the Romans, when required, did not or could not do this?


When required perhaps, but as a general rule to make up the numbers? I agree with Nathan there.


Steven wrote:
However, I wanted to show how Hyginus could have arrived at 1000 cavalry having 24 squadrons of 40 men based on him adding the equites legionis to a 16 squadron ala. I am allowed to do this, and the sky won’t fall in. Then I take this information and see if it has traction and go from there.

[..]
No, it comes from Hyginus (16) and the 1,000 cavalry and rounding down. Then it has been applied to the extra cavalry numbers and cavalry space allocation. His cavalry space allocation I have found can be traced back through the republic.

So if I’m understanding your method correctly, essentially you are taking a source (Hyginus in this example), you are then yourself rounding off the numbers without any literal grounds in that source (and you have defended that a 1000 more or less is no problem with you). After that you apply added cavalry numbers because of a system you have devised based on many such occasions in the past, effectively creating a second alteration of the numbers as given in this source for this occasion. The result you then declare proof for your grand theory.


Steven wrote:
I have found that sometimes it is better to just follow the maths and put any preconceived notions about the Roman army aside. There is a lot to gain by being objective.


In your case’I think that ‘just follow the maths’ is not following straightforward numbers in a source, but what results after you have done your rounding off/adding/detracting based on your system. That’s not ‘just maths’.
Robert Vermaat
MODERATOR
FECTIO Late Romans
THE CAUSE OF WAR MUST BE JUST
(Maurikios-Strategikon, book VIII.2: Maxim 12)
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Reply
#81
Robert wrote:

I find it equally amusing coming from someone who uses every source as if they are equally trustworthy.
 
I only do this when they have found to be trustworthy and supported.
 
Robert wrote:
You write a lot about what all historians should do.
 
You write a lot about what I should do.
 
Robert wrote:
Thousands of professionals have been wrong for decades or even half a century?
 
Well that is what happens when generations follow the theories of the previous generation.
 
Robert wrote:
I think that’s very good advice. Any number mentioned in a source concerning a unit of troops could well be based on the numbers available on that very occasion, NOT on the paper strength.
 
The Dura rosters are taken years apart and anything can happen in that time. If I did a roster system for a television news department it would vary greatly due to number of news crews out in the field and those waiting for a story to break, or those in the office writing and editing a story.
 
Robert wrote”
So if I’m understanding your method correctly, essentially you are taking a source (Hyginus in this example), you are then yourself rounding off the numbers without any literal grounds in that source.
 
Sorry to burst your bubble, but I have literal grounds, and no, you are not understanding my methods and never have because you’re not interested, or you like to make them into something else to prove I’m wrong.
 
Robert wrote:
After that you apply added cavalry numbers because of a system you have devised based on many such occasions in the past, effectively creating a second alteration of the numbers as given in this source for this occasion. The result you then declare proof for your grand theory.
 
If that is the way you want to look at it, be my guest. And what is this system I have devised? Can you tell me?
 
Robert wrote:
In your case’I think that ‘just follow the maths’ is not following straightforward numbers in a source, but what results after you have done your rounding off/adding/detracting based on your system. That’s not ‘just maths’.
 
Oh now I am fudging the numbers by rounding them to suit the system, whatever that is. This discussion has been about Hyginus. And for the record, when HAVEN’T YOU rounded the numbers in your life?
 
I’ve rounded Hyginus down from 41 point 6 to 40, big deal, time to get over it.
Reply
#82
(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: There is no double century here.

"The first centurion of the hastati led two centuries, 200 men, in the Second line..." (Veg II.8, as you say)

Vegetius has a century numbering 100 men. This century has 200 men, under one commander. A double century, then.

The point is that Vegetius claims various sizes for centuries in this section (and disagrees with Hyginus on the 'standard' century size). So we should not be too wedded to the idea that a century always numbered 80 men.


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: Also you are taking Vegetius’ legion to support your case of a 5,600 man legion.

No. I was calculating on the basis of a 'Hyginian' 80-man century, plus 3 officers, and a 'Hyginian' double first cohort, plus a 'Josephan' (if you like) 120 equites. No reference to Vegetius required - and the total is 5598. It's a suggestion, that's all - but for an early 2nd century legion it looks very feasible.


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: those on this forum who do not believe in the authenticity of the Vegetius legion

It is quite possible to be skeptical of Vegetius's various numerical calculations (which in at least one case are wrong anyway) and still allow that he is probably describing something close to a genuine formation, albeit not one of his own era.


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: “...the need for caution in formulating general statements in regard to the Roman army.”

A very apt quotation, and one that bears upon my point above.

You commented in an earlier post that the figures I cited from the Vindolanda tablet and Dura papyri "[do] not appear to be anything but guess work" - they are not 'guess work', they are actual figures from official Roman documents, compiled by actual Roman soldiers and detailing the strength of actual military units. The most primary of primary sources, in other words.

While we should exercise caution in using such figures to make wider statements about the army, as Fink says, we should not simply dismiss them as aberrations because they do not fit with some idealised schema or 'accepted' view.


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: Interesting how Julian has easily found a reference of a legion and an ala.

Julian's inscription was a very rare reference to a legion and a cavalry unit under (apparently) the same commander. This des not mean that the legion and the ala were blended together, or that men from the legion were added to the turmae of the cavalry unit.


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: Does Josephus clearly state that Cerealis’ men were hand-picked?

Not in that case. He uses the word 'select' several times in relation to other field forces of varying sizes though. Since Cerealis's 3000 infantry were surely not a single unit, there is no reason to assume that his 600 cavalry were either. Unless you want to fix on this one reference as it supports some theory of your own!



(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: If, when required, two cohorts of veterans could be allocated to each legion, then when in camp, where would you put those veteran cohorts?

Hyginus has his vexillarii accommodated within the camp - but he is also the principle literary source for the double first cohort!

Since the vexilla veteranorum (or whatever it was called) seems to have consisted of a single body of men, 'fewer than 500' according to Tacitus, there is no reason to think that two whole cohorts of them (!) would be 'allocated to each legion'. Where do you get this idea?

Are you denying the existence of the double first cohort then, contra Hyginus and Vegetius and archaeological evidence?


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: No, it comes from Hyginus (16) and the 1,000 cavalry and rounding down.

1000 divided by 24 (Hyginian turmae in the ala milliaria) is 41.6666 (etc) - rounded to the closest whole number that would be 42.

240 divided by 6, however, makes a round 40 - it may just be coincidence, but it looks like that's where you've got your 40 from. This would fit with your interest in the number 4: 4 myriads, 4000 or 40,000 men, and so on. But the number 6 is not found in this source, so we don't get 40 from it either.

Arrian gives the number of a quingenary ala as 512 - this divides by 32 (which is probably how he came up with it), but not by 40, or 42.


(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: My conclusion of being corrected to 40 men.

But I still don't understand who is doing this 'correcting', or why. You seem to be making your own corrections to the numbers in the sources, so they fit with your theory. If this is not the case, what's going on?

Your theory of pythagorean mathematical organisation, as I understand it, uses as its sole evidence the concordance of certain number patterns in ancient sources. But if those number patterns need to be 'corrected' to make the theory work, what evidence do you have?
Nathan Ross
Reply
#83
Nathan wrote:
Vegetius has a century numbering 100 men. This century has 200 men, under one commander. A double century, then.
 
Vegetius has a double century only for the hastati. There are two accounts of 150 man centuries, so why didn’t you select these? No wait, ignoring them and going with the 200 man century would not your theory work.
 
Nathan wrote:
The point is that Vegetius claims various sizes for centuries in this section (and disagrees with Hyginus on the 'standard' century size). So we should not be too wedded to the idea that a century always numbered 80 men.
 
Vegetius and Hyginus disagree on century sizes because both are discussing legions of differing sizes. Can’t you see the difference?
 
Nathan wrote:
No reference to Vegetius required - and the total is 5598. It's a suggestion, that's all - but for an early 2nd century legion it looks very feasible.
 
It looks feasible you say. Well that is incredible. And I round 41 point 6 down to 40 and I am under attack.
 
Nathan wrote:
It is quite possible to be skeptical of Vegetius's various numerical calculations (which in at least one case are wrong anyway) and still allow that he is probably describing something close to a genuine formation, albeit not one of his own era.
 
You mean cherry picking.
 
Nathan wrote:
You commented in an earlier post that the figures I cited from the Vindolanda tablet and Dura papyri "[do] not appear to be anything but guess work" - they are not 'guess work', they are actual figures from official Roman documents, compiled by actual Roman soldiers and detailing the strength of actual military units. The most primary of primary sources, in other words.
 
They have to be seen as not being complete. So taking the estimated number of men and dividing the number of centurions on the day is not my method of doing things.
 
Nathan wrote:
While we should exercise caution in using such figures to make wider statements about the army, as Fink says, we should not simply dismiss them as aberrations because they do not fit with some idealised schema or 'accepted' view.
 
Well I have not dismissed them and have them in my book, because they help support my case for something different.
 
Nathan wrote:
Julian's inscription was a very rare reference to a legion and a cavalry unit under (apparently) the same commander. This des not mean that the legion and the ala were blended together, or that men from the legion were added to the turmae of the cavalry unit.
 
But it is still there and can suggest that an ala could be allocated to a legion.
Nathan wrote:
Not in that case. He uses the word 'select' several times in relation to other field forces of varying sizes though. Since Cerealis's 3000 infantry were surely not a single unit, there is no reason to assume that his 600 cavalry were either. Unless you want to fix on this one reference as it supports some theory of your own!
 
Why are assuming I think the 600 cavalry would be a single unit when I explained it was made up of one ala (without officers), and the legionis equites (without officers). By my counting that makes 2 units.
 
Nathan wrote:
Since the vexilla veteranorum (or whatever it was called) seems to have consisted of a single body of men, 'fewer than 500' according to Tacitus, there is no reason to think that two whole cohorts of them (!) would be 'allocated to each legion'. Where do you get this idea?
 
I get these ideas after the men in white give me my medication. And this is what I am up against with you. Anything that does not agree with you is wrong. You cannot see any other way but your own. Paterculus has 10,000 veterans and 10 legions levied. Tacitus gives a detachment of veterans at about 500 men. The maths show that of the 20 units of veterans, each legion can be technically be allocated 2 veteran cohorts, which would make a legion of 6000 men organised into 12 cohorts each of 500 men. Wow, now who is that dude who says this, oh yeah, Isidore says a 6000 man legion was organised into 12 cohorts each of 500 men. Imagine that. Now why would Isidore say that?
 
Nathan wrote:
Are you denying the existence of the double first cohort then, contra Hyginus and Vegetius and archaeological evidence?
 
Oh definitely not! But I only accept it as a billeting arrangement of the legion when in camp, which ended in the first cohort being double in size. Now imagine if one of those veteran cohorts was place with the first cohort. Whoopee, a double cohort.
 
Nathan wrote:
1000 divided by 24 (Hyginian turmae in the ala milliaria) is 41.6666 (etc) - rounded to the closest whole number that would be 42.
 
And if it was rounded down it would be 40, and makes a unit of 960 men, which when divided by 30 per squadrons (minus the officers) amounts to 32 squadrons, and taking each squadron with officers numbers 32 men, then the total is 1,024 men. My theory and I am sticking to it, is Hyginus believed a squadron numbered 40 men because he along the way added the legionis equites to the equation. So trying to tell me otherwise is wasting both our time.
 
Nathan wrote:
240 divided by 6, however, makes a round 40 - it may just be coincidence, but it looks like that's where you've got your 40 from.
 
So when you deem something is a coincidence, what do you do? My impression is after a number of years on this forum in relations to my discussions with you is, you dismiss it without any further investigation.
 
Nathan wrote:
This would fit with your interest in the number 4: 4 myriads, 4000 or 40,000 men, and so on.
 
Really, so now I am going through the primary sources just looking for the number 4 then ramming it into what I want. Talk about reading between the lines to arrive at the conclusion you want. And what pray, am I also doing?
 
Nathan wrote:
But the number 6 is not found in this source, so we don't get 40 from it either.
 
How about we make a new rule for RAT? If the primary sources do not tells us, then we cannot make calculated guess. Now as the Perge documents does not specifically tell us the Late Roman legion had 1600 men, then let’s not try and deduct what the size of the legion is from the document.
 
Nathan wrote:
Arrian gives the number of a quingenary ala as 512 - this divides by 32 (which is probably how he came up with it), but not by 40, or 42.
 
Do you see what you are doing? You like to manipulate what I say and take it out of content. And for what reason? When have I divided 512 by 40 or implied this? Where in the name of god have I done this? The numbers I have used are 640 and 960 divided by 40.
 
You guys love to take data from every time frame and use it as some evidence, well let me do the same. Synesios gives the various size of the Unnigardae at 40 men, 160 men and 200 men. Walla, proof of 40 men squadrons (disclaimer: I don’t advocate that 40 man squadrons existed, but believe that Hyginus did believe a squadron in his time was 40 men).
 
Nathan wrote:
But I still don't understand who is doing this 'correcting', or why. You seem to be making your own corrections to the numbers in the sources, so they fit with your theory. If this is not the case, what's going on?
 
Well every time I explain it get turned around and the lectures begin about how wrong I am and then opinions are thrown at me as if they are fact. So in a nutshell, I have no idea where the hell you are coming from anymore.
 
Nathan wrote:
Your theory of pythagorean mathematical organisation, as I understand it, uses as its sole evidence the concordance of certain number patterns in ancient sources.
 
No, its the Pythagorean tribal system. From 18 BC to 192 AD, the tribal system is based on the infantry having 80 man centuries. After 192 AD is it 100 man centuries. So I know not to take data from one period and ram it into the other. What is your take on the Roman tribes Nathan? Have you ever given any thought as to how they could expand?
 
Nathan wrote:
But if those number patterns need to be 'corrected' to make the theory work, what evidence do you have?
 
Some of the ancient numbers have been rounded and all my rounding, when it occurs is within zero point 1 and sometimes even lower. And they are backed up by other textual information, especially Arrian against the Alans. It’s a brilliant piece of work, transferring Roman organisation to Greek. Those 4 taxis he talks about, well that is the number of men under the command of military tribunes. And it all fits like a glove.
 
You guys are in a situation of only having to respond to me, whereas I have to respond to more than one, I will be slow in replying as I have a lot of things to do at the moment.
 
Reply
#84
(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: No wait, ignoring them and going with the 200 man century would not your theory work.

I don't have a 'theory' that I need to make work. There are, as you know, inscriptions giving five or six centurions in a legion first cohort. If these cohorts were double size, as they appear to have been, then the centurions were commanding multiples of men. Perhaps it breaks down as Vegetius suggests, perhaps the centuries were all the same size (double). Without further evidence we could not possibly say one way or the other.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: Vegetius and Hyginus disagree on century sizes because both are discussing legions of differing sizes. Can’t you see the difference?

Or of different eras. Or one is right and the other wrong. Or both are mistaken. Or legions could be assembled in varying ways. So many options!


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: It looks feasible you say. Well that is incredible.

Seems entirely credible. 5598 is very close indeed to 5600. All I was doing was demonstrating that you can arrive at a very close figure without needing to add an auxiliary ala onto the legion strength.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: But it is still there and can suggest that an ala could be allocated to a legion.

Auxiliary units were 'allocated' to legions all the time, both in camp and on campaign. That does not mean that citizen legionaries were detached from the legion and added to non-citizen auxiliary turma, under the command of non-citizen decurions, to make up the number 40. As you claim not to believe in 40-man turmae anyway (see below) this entire debate is baffling.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: Why are assuming I think the 600 cavalry would be a single unit when I explained it was made up of one ala (without officers), and the legionis equites (without officers). By my counting that makes 2 units.

You would also need to account for the 500 cavalry mentioned as accompanying 3000 infantry elsewhere in Josephus, and the other various figures too. If you cannot, then you cannot suggest the one figure of 600 as evidence for anything. That would indeed be 'cherry picking'!


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: Paterculus has 10,000 veterans and 10 legions levied... The maths show that of the 20 units of veterans, each legion can be technically be allocated 2 veteran cohorts...

Vell Pat II.113: "...there were now gathered together in one camp ten legions, more than seventy cohorts, fourteen troops of cavalry and more than ten thousand veterans"

Unless you are suggesting that the 70+ (aux) cohorts and 14 alae should also be divided equally between the number of legions, there is no reason to do the same with the number of veterans. The text implies that the 10,000 veterans were separate from the legions, like the other units, not added to their strength.

So no evidence here for '2 veteran cohorts', or for 12-cohort legions.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: And if it was rounded down it would be 40, and makes a unit of 960 men, which when divided by 30 per squadrons (minus the officers) amounts to 32 squadrons, and taking each squadron with officers numbers 32 men, then the total is 1,024 men.

Roth, in Logistics of the Roman Army at War, also estimates 32 squadrons in a milliary ala, for a total of 1024 men. He does so quite simply by multiplying 32 men, which seems to be the usual size of a turma. 32 squadrons is not mentioned by Hyginus, but is a decent hypothesis.

So there is no need to use the number 40 at all in this calculation. It is a complete red herring.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: So trying to tell me otherwise is wasting both our time.

Evidently so! [Image: shocked.png]


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: Now as the Perge documents does not specifically tell us the Late Roman legion had 1600 men, then let’s not try and deduct what the size of the legion is from the document.

You've mentioned this before. The Perge document gives a complete official breakdown of a Roman military unit at a specific date, with only two missing digits. By replacing those missing digits by increments it is possible to work out the total size of the legion with some degree of accuracy. The minimum possible size is 1272 men, the most likely size 1472; it could well have been more than that.

That is completely different to combining numbers from multiple sources, often potentially corrupt and from different eras and/or of unknown authorship, and trying to make detailed calculations using them.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: Synesios gives the various size of the Unnigardae at 40 men, 160 men and 200 men. Walla, proof of 40 men squadrons (disclaimer: I don’t advocate that 40 man squadrons existed, but believe that Hyginus did believe a squadron in his time was 40 men).

You don't believe they existed, but Hyginus did, and Synesius gives proof of them? Why do you even need to discuss 40-man squadrons (which Hyginus does not, in fact, mention at all - nobody does)? It's perfectly easy to work out a 32-turma milliary ala without them.

*Edit* - Synesius Letter 78 mentions the Unnigardae in 'a handful of forty', and later asks "to add one hundred and sixty of these soldiers to the forty that we have already; for who would not admit that two hundred Unnigardae...would suffice...to bring the Ausurian war to an end." He makes it clear earlier that the Unnigardae (perhaps Huns) are irregular troops, and so would not be in regular Roman formations.


(05-15-2017, 01:16 PM)Steven James Wrote: So in a nutshell, I have no idea where the hell you are coming from anymore.

You mentioned that certain figures were different when 'corrected' - I asked who was correcting them, and why. That is all.
Nathan Ross
Reply
#85
(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: Nathan wrote:
Your figure of 40 men in a turma comes from dividing Hyginus's 240 equites by 6.
 
No, it comes from Hyginus (16) and the 1,000 cavalry and rounding down.

This seems to be De Voto's method also. He takes 1000 and divides by 24, which gives 41.67. This he rounds up to 42 but I have no problem with rounding it down to 40, as you have done. However, he makes a similar calculation for the ala quingenaria, dividing 500 by 16 and getting 31.25. This he rounds down to 31 but, again, I see no problem with rounding down to 30. The problem that I do have is that this results in turmae of different sizes and that I am distinctly uncomfortable with.

The major problem, however, is with the interpretation of Hyginus 16. Using Lenoir's version of the text, as De Voto does, the Latin reads 'mille efficitur' which he translates as '[their number] is set [at] a thousand'. The reason for this, Hyginus explains, is to provide space for the praefectus alae and so that the principales can have more room. In other words, the number of men in the ala is over-estimated to provide the extra space; 1000 is a notional figure used as a unit of measurement, not the true number of men in the unit. What that number may be is not clear but it is evidently less than 1000.

The further difficulty in using this passage as a guide to numbers is demonstrated by comparing Lenoir's version with Grillone's. Instead of 'mille efficitur', Grillone has 'nihil deducitur', 'nothing is deducted'. The reason for the discrepancy is that the manuscript from which all copies of Hyginus' text derive, which Grillone calls 'A', at this point reads 'mille deficitur', '1000 is left out' which, apart from being grammatically suspect, is also in the context complete nonsense. What we have, therefore, are different attempts to make sense of a corrupt text.   

(05-15-2017, 03:44 AM)Steven James Wrote: I am claiming Hyginus has made his calculations based on 40 men to a squadron by adding the equites legionis to an ala, and dividing by 16 squadrons to an ala.

Assuming that it is reasonable to combine legionary cavalry with an auxiliary quingenary ala, I fail to see why one would divide the total number by the number of turmae in the ala. We do not know if the 120 legionary cavalry were sub-divided but, if they were, there would be no need for any calculation. If they were not, it would be a simple matter to divide them into 30-man units, the same as the auxiliary ala. To do otherwise, would involve resizing an already established unit.
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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#86
(05-15-2017, 02:44 PM)Renatus Wrote: 1000 is a notional figure used as a unit of measurement, not the true number of men in the unit. What that number may be is not clear but it is evidently less than 1000... Grillone has 'nihil deducitur', 'nothing is deducted'... What we have, therefore, are different attempts to make sense of a corrupt text.   

Thanks - that's useful. I had no idea the text of Hyginus was so very dodgy!
Nathan Ross
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#87
(05-15-2017, 04:49 PM)Nathan Ross Wrote: I had no idea the text of Hyginus was so very dodgy!

You may be interested in this:

http://romanarmy.info/camp2_hyginus/camp_hyginus.html

I may not agree with everything (he has failed to notice the significance of Hyginus 16, for instance) but he certainly draws attention to the deficiencies in the text.

He prefers De Voto's translation to Richmond's, which doesn't say much for Richmond, but seems unaware of the translation by Catherine Gilliver in JRMES 4 (1993), 33-48, which is better still. Extraordinarily, however, she uses Grillone's text for the Latin but translates from Lenoir's, so the Latin and the English do not correspond.
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)
Reply
#88
About cavalry being part of the legions:

If Modestus’ treatise (supposedly written for Tacitus) is accepted as genuine and not a fifteenth-century forgery based on Vegetius, then either Claudius II or Aurelian had reattached the cavalry to their legions.

From:

Military History of Late Rome 284-361 Ilkka Syvanne (page 170)

*Perhaps the Modestus, praetorian prefect of the East 369-377 (PLRE i. 607) ?
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#89
(05-15-2017, 07:05 PM)Renatus Wrote: He prefers De Voto's translation to Richmond's, which doesn't say much for Richmond, but seems unaware of the translation by Catherine Gilliver in JRMES 4 (1993), 33-48, which is better still. Extraordinarily, however, she uses Grillone's text for the Latin but translates from Lenoir's, so the Latin and the English do not correspond.

Surely one of the most scholarly sentences ever on RAT! Could somebody give Michael a +1 for that? Thanks!


(05-15-2017, 09:19 PM)Julian de Vries Wrote: If Modestus’ treatise (supposedly written for Tacitus) is accepted as genuine and not a fifteenth-century forgery based on Vegetius, then either Claudius II or Aurelian had reattached the cavalry to their legions.

As Syvanne doesn't give a reference for this, and doesn't seem to refer to Modestus elsewhere in his book, it's hard to know what to make of the comment...

An enlarged cavalry component in the post-Severan legion does seem very probable, based on the Egyptian equites promoti records - it might explain the 6000-man size too, although the same size appears in Livy, I think.

The idea that Gallienus formed a 'cavalry army' of some sort has been challenged recently, and quite persuasively, although I think Syvanne supports it. Whether he did, and then Aurelian (or somebody) reattached the cavalry, and then somebody else separated them again, seems impossible to judge really, and a whole other can of worms!
Nathan Ross
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#90
(05-15-2017, 10:00 PM)Nathan Ross Wrote: Surely one of the most scholarly sentences ever on RAT! Could somebody give Michael a +1 for that? Thanks!

My thanks for the compliment and to Robert for posting the rep have been split off but I repeat them here.
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)
Reply


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