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5.0 out of 5 stars A GOOD REFERENCE WORK, 2 April 2014
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This review is from: Roman Centurions 75331 BC (Men-at-arms) (Paperback)
Archeology constantly challenges our perceptions whether by new discoveries or new interpretations. This Osprey edition presents the history of the dress, arms and duties of those mainstays of Roman military power, the Centurions of the legions. Tracing their presence from the earliest history of the city and its Etruscan roots, and tracing the development of these soldiers to the end of the republic we learn how they were arrayed through the legions. Varying grades and varying duties are all documented, from the headquarters to the first rank of the deployed legion to detached duty on dangerous missions.

The author pays particular attention to ancient texts and monuments and thus we are able to know many centurions by name and service. In fact, Titus Pullo and Lucius Vorenus, two characters in a recent television series are based on real soldiers who were mentioned by Caesar in De Bello Gallico (p. 33). In addition to organizational details and derring do, arms, armor, decorations are all covered. The artist, Giuseppe Rava, skillfully brings color to data collected from written records and monuments and shows the centurions in action and performing civic duties. His rendition of a centurion leading the captured King of Numidia in the triumph of Marius (104 B.C.) is very evocative (Plate E).
For the general reader or as a reference while reading the classics, Roman Centurions is highly recommended.
The perfect companion to this fine work is THE ROMA VICTRIX wine beakerCalix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker
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