Battles of the Roman Empire


Mark Cartwright
published on 07 June 2019
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The Roman Empire was forged through warfare and in this collection we look at some of the key battles and revolts that shaped its borders from the reign of Augustus onwards. We look at Varus' shocking defeat at the Battle of Teutoburg Forest, where the legions infamously lost their eagles to the enemy and so their numbers were retired. There were major revolts to be dealt with in Britain and Palestine, the troublesome Parthians to face in Asia with their unusual tactic of firing arrows as they retreated, and then came the armies of Queen Zenobia and her Palmyrene Empire, who took advantage of the rule of Barracks Emperors during the Crisis of the Third Century CE. We also meet Atilla the Hun whose expansion into western Europe was only halted at the Battle of Catalaunian Fields in France in 451 CE. The Romans might have built an impressive empire but they certainly had to spill some blood to keep it.

Although the story of the battle of Teutoburg was known since antiquity, it was not accorded special significance until 1470 CE when the description by Tacitus was discovered and printed in Venice for the first time. However, the exact location of the battlefield continued to be an enigma for more than 500 years...



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About the Author

Mark Cartwright
Mark is a history writer based in Italy. His special interests include pottery, architecture, world mythology and discovering the ideas that all civilizations share in common. He holds an MA in Political Philosophy and is the Publishing Director at WHE.

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