The Roman Army: A Social and Institutional History

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ABC-CLIO, 2006 - History - 383 pages

This wide-ranging study of the Roman army covers its political, historical, and social aspects as well as its peacetime occupations and its operation in war.

The Roman Army: A Social and Institutional History offers a revealing portrait of a legendary fighting force in peacetime and at war from a soldier's-eye view. Organized thematically, it explores the army's history, culture, and organization, while providing fascinating details of the soldier's daily life and of the army's interactions with citizens, politicians, and the inhabitants of conquered territories.

Written by a leading scholar of Roman military history, The Roman Army helps readers appreciate the distinctive traits that helped the army sustain itself for nearly 1,000 years, including its adaptability (soldiers did civilian police and military duty and the army continually modified its tactics and weapons), as well as its training methods, compensation system, strict regimen of punishment and rewards, and its skill at "Romanizing" foreign lands. Readers will also see how historians pieced together their understanding of the army's way of life, drawing on everything from Rome's rich historical record to depictions of military subjects in literature and art.

* Contains an appendix detailing the rank structure of the Roman army

* Includes illustrations of military equipment, sculptured tombstones, and portraits of generals and emperors

* Provides further reading lists at the end of each chapter and a complete bibliography of major works for further research

* Offers a glossary of important Latin and Greek terms as well as military and political terminology


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User Review  - gmicksmith - LibraryThing

This is a sober overview of the Roman army insofar as it can be reconstructed. Southern is skeptical that the story of the army can be known in all respects but she outlines what can be realized. The ... Read full review


Chapter 2 Historical Background
Chapter 3 The Roman Army
Chapter 4 Culture of the Roman Army
Chapter 5 The Roman Army at War
Chapter 6 Tools ofWar
Chapter 7 The Late Roman Army
Chapter 8 Great Soldiers and Battles
Chapter 9 Current Assessment
Appendix Rank Structure in the Roman Army
About the Author

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About the author (2006)

Pat Southern is a community learning librarian currently working for Trafford Library Service in Cheshire, England. Her published works include several books on the Roman army and the Roman Empire, including The Roman Cavalry and The Roman Empire From Severus to Constantine.

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