The Life And Times Of A Roman — страница 2
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dealing punishments, such as decimation, where one soldier out of ten was selected for the wrongdoings of another, and the other nine soldiers would stone the luckless soldier to death. If a Centurion was found worthy, he might even be promoted to general, but the common Centurion had no hope of this. The Centurion was also in charge of making sure that all his mens’ equipment and armour was ready to go for the next march out of camp. The men of a Roman Legion were the best equipped soldiers in the world – being well protected but still possessing considerable freedom of movement. Their equipment was heavy, but lighter than the rest of the armies at the time. This allowed the Romans to march up to 20 miles a day in full armour, and still set up a large fortification at night when they stopped to make camp. Overall about 70% of a legionnaire’s naked flesh was covered by armour, mostly being a type of banded armour called lorica segmentata, but mobility was seen as the best defense, so the armour was kept quite light, allowing a large amout of movement in quite rigid armour. The legionaires also carried a heavy body shield, called a suctus, which tended to weigh about 20 lbs, but offered a large amount of defense. The legionaires also had a helmet, usually in the Etrusco-Corinthian style made popular by Hollywood, which despite its’ looks, kept the heads of the legionaires quite cool. Finally, the legionaires carried 2 types of swords and a spear. The swords were the pugio, which is a short dagger that allows small thrusts into the abdomen of an enemy, or was used as an utility knife. The Gladius Hispaniensis, or Spanish Sword, was the legionaires main weapon of destruction. It was used mainly as a jabbing and piercing weapon that could be used behind the relative safety of a shield. The legionaires were also issued a spear, called a pila. This spear, or javelin if it was thrown, was used to keep enemies at bay, and also as a missile weapon to wreak havoc among the ranks of their enemies. When thrown or jabbed into a shield, the pila would bend near the tip of the spear, and make it useless to throw back, and also would weigh down the shield of the enemy, who would most likely discard the now usless sheild. The legionaires would also carry a turf cutter and a stake, which would be used to set up camp after a march. All of these items, when combined with the armour weigh in at about 70 lbs, which is quite a load to carry. All this equipment was required to be carried by the legionaire for long marches, which could range from 10 miles up to 20 miles in a day, and then the legionaires would set up camp, which included making a fort that would offer some protection if the Romans were attacked at night. Thus, it is easy to see that the marches weren’t ment for the lazy or the faint of heart. In conclusion, it is easy to see that the life of the legionaire was a tough one, it was needed to gain territory and glory for the Empire. The training of the legionaire was essential for orginization and discipline, to allow the Legions to be formidible in combat. The orginization and disipline was essential for the long marches with heavy equipment, and the setting up of camp, to run smoothly. Moreover, had the Romans not been so strict about their military, they would never have come out of the obscurity that shrouded them before their rise to power, and thus would not be the potent symbol of military strength that we recognize them to be today.
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