The Roman Army Essay

906 Words 4 Pages
The Roman Army

Throughout history, no other era was more significant than that of the Roman Empire. The power and influence of the Roman government and it=s rule over the world was accomplished by the Roman Army. The Roman army was the ultimate weapon of war because of the well trained men, their effective weapons and their brilliant battle tactics.
The first requirement for a successful army is to have brave and well trained men.
Recruits were taught to march and performed parade drill twice a day. They were taught how to build a camp, swim and ride. A Roman was half a soldier from the start, and he could endure discipline which soon produced the other half (Adcock 5).
Weapons training concentrated on sword and javelin. For
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In early Rome, only the wealthiest soldiers wore armor and then only a helmet and breast plate of beaten bronze. (Adkins 82) The most common form of body armor was the Greek style bronze cuirass, consisting of a front and back plate held in position by leather straps, past through loops in back of the plates. (Adkins 82) The soldiers carried a shield, sword, dagger and a javelin. The shield was a very large, curved item, usually the size of a man=s entire body. It was made similar to plywood, with thin sheets of wood, glued together so that the grain of each piece was at right angles to each other. Outside, the shield was covered with leather, and was then decorated with fancy silver and bronze symbols. Usually, these symbols would represent the Caesar of the day. The sword was a double-bladed weapon, about two feet long and two inches wide. While the sword was carried nearly chest high, the dagger was carried on the left side of the roman soldier. The shape of the dagger was similar to a leaf of a plant, usually nine to ten inches long. All of these weapons had ornaments of some type. The javelin was designed to break when it hit something, so that if the enemy blocked it with his shield, the javelin would make it useless to the enemy and the shield would have to be thrown away. Then the legionary would charge behind his own big shield, trying to knock him over, and would stab him with his Gladius. This very successful tactic made the Roman

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