Talk:Roman army

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Incorrect Information Regarding Roman Armors[edit]

Erroneous information regarding the lorica segemnta. This iron band armor (Not steel) was used primarily between 100-200 CE, ie. Trajan's Column. It was NOT the most common form of armor for legionaries. The lorica hamata, or chainmail, was the PRIMARY form of armor for legionaries during the Republic and the Empire. The Legionaries of course, would've had higher quality chainmail suits than auxillaries. Chainmail was the primary armor Roman armor used during the Post-Marian, Early to Mid Imperial, and late Imperial timeframes. I've changed the article to address these issues. Intranetusa 18:30, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Add Roman-army Reforms Timeframe[edit]

There are probably 5-6 major timeframes that the Roman army can be divided into:

  • 1. Pre-Camillian (hoplite warfare)
  • 2. Camillian (3 lined infantry - hastati, principes, triari)
  • 3. Polybian (improvement upon the Camillian)
  • 4. Post-Marian (Heavy legionary infantry and auxillaries)
  • 5. Augustan/Imperial (improvement upon post-Marian, including auxillaries)
  • 6. Late Imperial

Please add on to this section and add more details.

Intranetusa 18:34, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Red Rampant[edit]

I found a cool website for anyone who wishes to know more abot this subject.http://www.redrampant.comWardhog 19:02, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Sweet. KnightHospitaller 02:44, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Redirect removed and article created[edit]

I removed the redirect of Roman Army to Roman legion since the two are not synonymous. However, this article might now need flagging as a stub until further contributions are made to it - PocklingtonDan 11:15, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

At Long Last![edit]

Great to see that at long last, the Roman Army super-article has been subdivided and reasonably portioned out into smaller, more coherent, manageable pieces. Thanks to all who helped make that happen. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 01:11, 6 December 2006 (UTC).


Are there any historical records in existence regarding what sort of qualifications were required to be in the Roman Army? To elaborate with some questions, were criminals allowed in? or the mentally ill? Or was the standing rule: If you can hold a sword/shield and walk, you're in? I see that the main prerequisite was physical fitness, but is there anything more specific on record? 17:01, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

There are records of entire legions being formed from criminals and gladiators when the need was great. It is very unlikely the mentally ill would ever have served in the ROman (or any other) army. By that I mean serious mental illness, those with minor mental ailments such as mild depression etc would undoubtedly have served. - PocklingtonDan 17:07, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

Source for numeri[edit]

I found a source for numeri units Wandalstouring 14:22, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

romans playing football?[edit]

"Sometimes they played football. This was a grueling,violent sport that sometimes broke bones." <--- say what? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 02:14, 4 April 2007 (UTC).

Man... what's your source? KnightHospitaller 02:42, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

May 2007 "Attacking Tactics" Cleanup Tag[edit]

I have somewhat cleaned up this section. I've got a problem with the "Charge" sub-section though. Did Julius actually fight Pompey? Anyway, fix it if you know then inform me if the section is 'clean' enough to have the tag removed. KnightHospitaller

Yeah, Julius fought Pompey during the civil war. Pompey led the senates forces. Julius defeated Pompey and got declared dictator for life (Imperator) Wardhog 19:43, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks... KnightHospitaller 16:55, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

From the "Tactics" section of the article:
"The triarii maniples would do the same behind the principe rank. Velites, Roman skirmishers, would place themselves at the very front of the formation and begin firing."
Maybe a different verb than "firing"? (Unless they had weapons that were far ahead of their time... as far as I know, the Velites carried mostly projectiles, i.e., spears, short javelins, etc., which one wouldn't ordinarily "fire.") C d h (talk) 23:35, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

i have changed it to "loosed there bolts" is that ok?Bhargav123 (talk) 16:58, 23 January 2008 (UTC)


"In an early to mid-Republican era legion, the first two lines, Hastati and Principes, were armed with gladii, a large squarish oval scutum, lorica hamata or chainmail shirt for principes, and a square chestpiece made of bronze for the hastai, and two Pila. The Triarii were armed with a gladius, a hasta, scutum and lorica hamata. By the late Republican period, all legionaries carried a gladius, two pila, a broad oval scutum, and wore chainmail armor." - a number of things wrong with that. Firstly, don't you mean rectangular shield, with rounded corners of course. Secondly, as pre-marian legionaries bought thier own equipment would it not be logical that some of the Hastati might have been able to afford lorica hamata (chainmail) and that some of the principes would have made-do with a breastplate. At the end its gone completely madsaying legionaries had oval shields when it's almost universal knowledge that the had rectangular shields.Could someone else give me thier opinion before I correct it or could they do it for me? Wardhog 19:37, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

You fixed it already, but yeah, you're right. Didn't read that section... KnightHospitaller 16:54, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

Pre-Imperial legions had a oval shaped shield. The oval shaped scutum was replaced around the 1st century AD by the rectangular scutum. Common mistake, most people don't know the pre-Marian organization of the Roman army. Ednel 01:33, 9 October 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ednel (talkcontribs)

Oval Scuta were predominant in all ages until the kite took over in late Byzantine days. The rectangular scutum is one of those things that have taken over in public perception due to Hollywood and modern-day re-enactors, much like the lorica segmentata. (talk) 06:08, 19 September 2012 (UTC)


why were they always in red? or weren't they? 20:31, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

Roman soldiers wore red or brown tunics but their shields Were ussualy dark red or dark blue Wardhog 18:25, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Yeah... depends on what they could buy with their salary. Shields were usually red and square but they had different markings on them.- KnightHospitaller 17:00, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

May 2007 Tactics "Clean-up" Tag[edit]

I cleaned the Tactics section heavily. I deleted an enormous part of the section talking about theories and reasons and replaced it with a short paragraph. I also swept through the largest paragraph and found bad mistakes. I added some things from the Hastati page too. I just need to know if I can take away the tag now. Someone read the section and edit it if it is wrong, then remove the tag. Please. KnightHospitaller 02:54, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

"Thanks"... I just deleted it. KnightHospitaller Legio XII 00:43, 6 July 2007 (UTC)

Army Size[edit]

There is a chart on the Military of Ancient Rome page that I think might be helpful. I'm a little new so I can't upload it. If someone could please do it... KnightHospitaller 02:54, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Fundamental Problem with this Article[edit]

I see that there exist separate articles on the history of the Roman Army. Why do we have this then? It assumes constancy of form, tactic, rank, weaponry, and suchlike when we separately acknowledge that few, if any of these things, were constant through the duration of the Roman Army's existance! Let's destroy this article and meld what's worth keeping into the other topics.

First Cohort[edit]

The Ranks section says that there are 10 centuries in the 1st cohort and 64 in the legion. I've heard 5 double-strength centuries. I haven't heard anything about double the officers. The "Roman legion" article states (correctly, I believe) that there are 59 each of centurions, optios, etc. 22:54, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

The romans managed to conquer so many countries becasue they had such a good army. The Emperor used to proctect Rome and to control the people it had conquered. Some soliders were away from their families for long periods of time.

When a *solider had served in the army for 25 years he could become a citizen of Rome. By Amy Buckler

auxilary(a soldier who was not a Roman citizen)

Deliberate Damage[edit]

I found a bunch of deliberate damage to this article. I don't claim to know anything about the Roman army -- that is, after all, why I'm here -- but I know that "gobldigook" probably isn't Latin and I doubt the Romans had "flux capacitors". Beyond just fixing the problems by backing out the changes, what else needs to be done? Davemenc 06:36, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

On the subject, the section on Roman Soldier's Main Armor appears badly mangled - there are missing paranthesis and apparantly random italics throughout.-- (talk) 07:23, 19 November 2007 (UTC)

Rank question ?[edit]

If more than 1 legion was in battle , what is the rank of their commander ?--Blain Toddi 16:08, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

That would be assigned on a case-by-case basis. If more than one legion was in battle, there was a very serious military operation going on which would probably require direct orders from the senate or praetor, so the precedence of legates would most likely be determined politically. Is my guess. Leushenko (talk) 00:23, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

Maniples, and their disposition[edit]

Among the various divisions of the force, that of the maniple seems to be quite significant, but its size is not defined, except that is more than a century and less than a cohort. Also, the description of the order of battle - the arrangement of maniples composed of hastati, principes, etc. is not clear. (talk) 05:34, 16 April 2008 (UTC)


To the people who are/will be working on this article, I suggest to take a look at the Slovak Wikipedia article on the Roman Army. It has tons of interesting photos which could be of use here. --Steerpike (talk) 18:18, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

Time of service.[edit]

I will add something about the time of service for soldiers in the army. It that there is nothing written about that. I hope i'll make a good job of it. Oktawiusz (talk) 19:10, 15 November 2009 (UTC)


we need to clean this up. there are posts from 2008 Oktawiusz (talk) 20:05, 16 November 2009 (UTC)

what the[edit]

what happened? there are no images in this page, and its been changed —Preceding unsigned comment added by Oktawiusz (talkcontribs) 18:14, 24 November 2009 (UTC)

Future direction[edit]

I've raised questions about the relationship of this article to other Roman Army pages at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Military history/Classical warfare task force. Contributing editors may wish to comment.Monstrelet (talk) 10:49, 10 January 2010 (UTC)


The sixth paragraph of the mid-Republic secion begins with "The army that was otorgued to a praetor..." What the heck does otorgued mean? I can't find it in any dictionary and the closest words I can find to it is outargued which means something like "to outdo or defeat in arguing" and has nothing that I can see to do with leading an army. I'd rather not change it without knowing if it's actually a word or not. In addition, the original version of that paragraph (all three sentences of it) were horribly written before I made my edits there and it was kind of hard to interpret what the original author was trying to say (that is, unless it was originally gibberish to begin with), so I edited it to be more coherent as best I could interpret. Spartan198 (talk) 11:18, 9 October 2010 (UTC)

I wonder whether this scribal error was perhaps meant to be "prorogued," an uncommon word in English with a technical meaning in Latin; see prorogatio. Cynwolfe (talk) 16:48, 27 August 2012 (UTC)


What is the established era style for this article? Seems to be BC/AD, from a glance at its earliest versions. Just want to make sure. Cynwolfe (talk) 20:47, 26 August 2012 (UTC)

Since the half the article that straddles millennia was in BCE/CE, I've switched the whole thing in that direction while making some other MoS edits. I haven't done any archaeology to find what the earlier primary convention was or what led to the inconsistency.  davidiad.: 13:04, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
The earliest use I found was BC/AD, but since we have converted to the arguable "established" instead of "earliest," as era policy used to say (nor do we specify "predominant" in a mixed-era article), we have left the door open to pointless haggling. Cynwolfe (talk) 16:54, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
Yep. My edit was made purely for the sake of consistency, and I stand by neither convention for this article: when the villagers come with torches aglow, I'll be hiding in a steamer trunk with a bottle of brandy.  davidiad.: 18:16, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
The brandy is vital. Cynwolfe (talk) 18:34, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

Please no more changes to this[edit]

I had to correct an irrelevant error that I found, which some user placed the holy roman empire in here, so please, can anyone explain to anyone who try to do this, because truthfully we all know that the HRE is not roman nor doesn't have any direct connections to it, and only see what history actually gives us, and no more changes. And i apologize if I'm being strict. Thank you.Xherin (talk)