The Roman Cavalry: From the First to the Third Century AD

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Psychology Press, 1997 - History - 256 pages
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The cavalry was a vital part of the army of Rome and it played a significant role in the expansion and success of the Roman Empire. Karen R. Dixon and Pat Southern describe the origins of the mounted units of the Roman army and trace their development from temporary allied troops to the regular alae and cohorts. They have drawn together evidence from a wide variety of sources: archaeological, epigraphic and literary, as well as comparing ancient testimony with more recent experience of the use of cavalry.
The book covers the subject from the perspective of both the men and the horses. How were the horses selected and disposed of; how were they trained, stabled and fed? How were the men recruited, organized and equipped; and what were the conditions of service for a Roman cavalryman? The cavalry had to be employed in peacetime and this is discussed as well as its role in war.
The image of the Roman cavalry is often one of excitement and glory but the authors are aware that a true picture must not overlook the routine and the suffering. This book provides a comprehensive account of the Roman cavalry and the current state of knowledge concerning it. The wide selection of illustrations includes original drawings by Karen R. Dixon.
  

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The author uses information from classical sources combined with archaeological findings and data from 19th and early 20th century European records to give a fairly detailed picture of the Roman ... Read full review

Contents

List of illustrations
6
List of plates S Preface and acknowledgements
9
Sources
11
Origins unit strength organization and titulature
20
Equipment and unit armament styles
34
Recruitment
78
Conditions of service
87
Training
113
Military records and the supply of horses
148
Roman cavalry mounts
163
Stables and grooming
181
Water and food supply
206
Welfare
218
Baggage animals
234
Glossary
239
Bibliography
243

The hippika gymnasia
126
The employment of cavalry in peacetime and wartime
135

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About the author (1997)

Karen R. Dixon has a Doctorate from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. She is a professional archaeological illustrator. She is the co-author of The Late Roman Army (Batsford 1996). Pat Southern is Librarian of the Newcastle upon Tyne Literary and Philosophical Society. She is the co-author of The Late Roman Army (Batsford 1996) and the author of Domitian (Routledge 1997).

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