Thursday, May 13, 2004

Roman History, Coins, and Technology Back Pages

Roman History, Coins, and Technology Back Pages Articles on a wide range of topics including emperors, women, events, engineers, the army, art, government, social classes, food, cities, the economy, trade, transport and coins, hosted by San José State University. Includes a bibliography and a glossary.

From the site:

At the right is an image of a Roman centurio (often called a centurion in Modern English) training the new recruits of one of Rome's many legions in the gladius pit. It was discipline and drill that made the Roman legions a far superior fighting force to any army that another nation or kingdom could put into the field. The young recruit, not visible here but who is actually standing to the left of the centurio, is being required to wield a GLADIVS (Roman short sword of Spanish origin) and CLIPEVS (small round shield) of twice the regulation weight as the training officer tries to get under his guard with a blunt but forcefully delivered stick.

How did we get such a good color photograph of a two thousand year old warrior, you may ask. Well, your Humble Web Author has shared many a glass of watered vinegar with this man. We both serve in the Tenth Roman Legion, only recently mustered once again after about 1700 years! The Latin name for our unit is LEGIO X FRETENSIS, Fourth Cohort, and our standards proudly carry our legion's name in its abbreviated form, LEGIO X FRET COH IV. For these are modern - day reenactors, those practitioners of living history. In keeping with Your Humble Author's committment to the sixth and seventh graders of this world, he has gone and joined up, to, as the old song says to "'enlist, Bonnie Laddie, and come awagh!" In his enthusiasm to present as accurate, lifelike, and interesting a picture of Roman history to his esteemed readership, he has committed himself to hauling his aged and corpulent carcass over hill and dale, wearing the regulation HAMATA, the thirty to forty pounds of Roman chain mail. He carries the PILVM, and wields the GLADIVS as well as an old veteran of many wounds can. We can relate happily that the kids, their parents, and their teachers love it when we show up at a public event!

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