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Kicking Roman Butt
Allies and enemies of Rome ?
Anybody mention the marsicani yet ?
Of them the Romans said "We do not go to war against the Marsi, nor do we go to war without them"...

Who were they ?
A fierce central italian tribe of Mountain people located around what is today the Abruzzo Appenines.
Personally, I think one of the most disastrous defeats Rome experienced (in terms of historical consequences) was Adrianople. But, if asked who was Rome's most destructive enemy, I'd answer the Romans themselves. Throughout their history, civil wars wreaked the worst havoc on the their civilization. If Romans hadn't exercised such a proclivity for killing other Romans, we'd probably all be speaking Latin today.
Robert Stroud
The New Scriptorium
I'm thinking that the greatest foe of the Romans was the Jews. I mean, they revolted numerous times and each time it wasn't that they totally annihilated the Romans, but they wore them down over time. The desert heat, and their constant rebellions and ambushes were enough to hurt the moral of any army. The entire province of Judea was a time bomb waiting to explode and could go at any minute. Rome spent a lot of time just putting down rebellions and they spent countless months besieging Jewish fortifications, such as Masada. Even if they won in the end, I think the prolonged sieges and constant threat worked on the nerves of every Roman in the area.

Of course, all of the other enemies mentioned are definitely threats, so it is hard to pinpoint the biggest. I just think the Jews gave Rome the hardest time, not enough to really defeat you, but enough that you're constantly annoyed and trying to control the problem.

The Parthians were major foes, but I think their success over the Romans was not so much their fighting capability, but the lack of ability by Roman commanders, such as Crassus. The Parthians, mainly as a cavalry unit would have been unable to break the lines of heavy Roman infantrymen...but they were excellent at taking advantage of mistakes made by commanders, such as sending out small parties, or attacking the baggage trains. Their success is owed to their own ability to take advantage of a situation, and to the incompetence of Roman commanders. Still, they did possess a large force, and were a constant threat. Luckily, for the Romans, the Parthians were involved in civil strife more than war with Rome. Otherwise, I think they definitely would've been the greatest foe.

Just a thought!
Gaius Tertius Severus "Terti" / Trey Starnes


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