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system was in so far maintained that the utterly poor and indigent were as much as possible excused from military service a rule which, of course, could not be observed in times of distress. Poverty seems, on the whole, never to have constituted a legal claim to exemption from military service. A new law was therefore unnecessary when it was found advisable to demand the services of the lowest classes of the population.1



of the

The detail of the army organization, including equip- Character ment, tactics, camp regulations, time of service, pay, Roman military punishments and rewards, belongs to the depart- army. ment of Roman antiquities, and cannot be fully discussed in a political history. It has already been said time of Polybius the division of the people into classes which still subsisted for voting purposes, had not yet lost all connexion with the military organization. It is difficult to understand upon what principle the selection was made for the different classes of soldiers, if age, strength, and property were all taken into consideration at the same time. Some sort of compromise must have been made. Perhaps able-bodied men were ranged among the heavyarmed troops, even if they were too poor to provide themselves with the full equipment. If the first outlay was borne by the state, the price may have been deducted from the pay or the men's share of the booty.

This explains the variations noticeable in different periods in the lowest property qualification required for actual military service-viz. 4,000 asses (Polyb. vi. 19, 2), 1,500 asses (Cicero, De Rep. ii. 22), and 375 asses (Gell. xvi. 10). The statement of Sallust (Jug. 86) that Marius in enlisting the capite censi deviated from the ancient custom is only partially correct. The capite censi were never exempt from military service, but they were generally passed over as inferior material for the army. When occasion required they were employed for naval service or for the formation of city legions (legiones urbane), which probably were a kind of reserve corps for the defence of Rome. In times of emergency, as, for instance, in the Hannibalic war, when even slaves were admitted, it is not likely that the capite censi were excused. Polybius expressly states (vi. 19, 3) that the citizens estimated below 400 drachmae were employed εἰς τὴν ναυτικὴν χρείαν· ἐὰν δέ ποτε κατεπείγῃ τὰ τῆς περιστάσεως ὀφείλουσι καὶ πέζῃ στρατεύειν εἴκοσι στρατείας ἐνιαυσίους.

2 The legions were raised 'tributim '-i.e. according to tribes, each tribe having to furnish an equal number of recruits. It may be worth while to inquire by what process the Romans adapted the contingent of every tribe, the number of which gradually rose from twenty-one to thirty-five, to the strength of the legion, which was not increased in proportion, but ranged only between 4,200 men and 5,000. It seems that this adaptation was possible only by a gradual diminution in the number of men forming one military century or company. The original number requisite to form a century was no doubt one hundred, as the name centuria implies. At the beginning of the republic, when the number of tribes was twenty-one, two such centuries of



that the consistency and regularity with which the principle of universal compulsory service was carried out in Rome was one of the chief causes of the superiority of Rome over all the other states of antiquity.' The Roman armies were not formed of professional soldiers but of citizens. They were a militia force, disbanded every year to be reconstituted when required, and possessing no permanent staff of officers. However, the principle of universal compulsion to serve was not carried out quite rigorously, any more than it is in modern states. A selection among those required to serve is inevitable when, as is always the case, they cannot all be enlisted; and thus it happened that some citizens liable to serve were more often found in the ranks than others. War has especial attractions for some. Hence a large number of volunteers presented themselves for the Roman armies, especially when there was a prospect of booty. The Han

one hundred each taken from each tribe would form a legion of 4,200 men. This was the normal strength of the legion. For more than one hundred years, until 387 B.C., the number of tribes remained stationary, and the strength of the legion likewise. Then four new tribes were added. Thus the legion rose to 5,000, the same number of full centuries, or 200 men, being raised from each tribe. Livy says, viii. 8, 14: Scribebantur autem quatuor fere legiones quinis millibus peditum. The tribes were gradually increased to twenty-seven, twenty-nine, thirty-one, thirty-three, and finally to thirty-five in 241 B.C. If the government had gone on raising 200 men from every tribe, the strength of the legion would have swelled at last to 7,000 men. This was avoided by diminishing the number of recruits levied from each tribe. Finally, as it seems, the original strength of the legion of 4.200 men was restored (Polyb. vii. 20, 8), and at the same time the strength of the century o company was fixed at sixty men. Two companies of sixty men, or 120 men, from each of the thirty-five tribes would produce a legion of 4,200 men, a proportion which suited the strength of the legion and the number of tribes. It seems not unlikely that the reduction of the century from one hundred to sixty was made gradually to suit the increasing number of tribes.

It is clear that a slave-holding state can more easily carry out the principle of universal military service than a community of freemen alone. Slaves not being allowed to carry arms would in time of war continue their peaceful occupations, raise food, and supply the necessary articles of consumption. The states of antiquity, which were all slave states, therefore enforced the principle of compulsory service only so far as the free citizens were concerned. They knew nothing of public duties or public privileges which included all human beings alike.

2 Liv. xxxi. 8; xxxii. 9, 1; xxxvii. 4, 3. Vol. iii. p. 26.

nibalic war and the service in the provinces, which lasted for several years, especially in Spain, could not fail to estrange a portion of the citizens from their peaceable occupations, and to bind them permanently to the adventurous career of soldiers. Thus we find that favourite leaders could without difficulty induce numbers of volunteers to continue their service beyond the time prescribed by law. Cohorts of veterans and prætorian guards were formed and constituted select bodies, distinct from the regular legions. Thus the beginning was made for the formation of standing armies, such as those with which the civil wars were waged, and which at a later time formed the military strength of the Empire.

But it was not always by their own free will that the soldiers continued to serve beyond the legal time. early as the first war in Sicily they had been compelled to remain longer; and this kind of compulsion was again resorted to and applied on a larger scale the further the theatre of war was removed from home and the longer the wars lasted, as was especially the case in Spain. In that country Romans and Italians grew old in arms; they sometimes settled there and married Spanish wives, and their descendants were a half-Roman population. This was the origin of the municipium of Italica and of Carteia, which were the first Italian settlements beyond the confines of Italy. But the troops compelled to remain so long in active service sometimes became discontented, and military discipline was thereby seriously endangered. An instance of this occurred in the year 180 B.C., when it was found necessary to allow the prætor Q. Fulvius Flaccus to bring the veterans back from Spain This was done by P. Cornelius Scipio when he accompanied his brother Lucius as legate to the Syrian war. Vol. iii. p. 136.

2 The first of whom this is reported is the younger Scipio Africanus. Paullus Diac., s. v. Prætoria cohors.' Appian, Hisp. 84. Such soldiers received sixfold pay.


Appian, Hisp. 38. This municipium of Italica on the Bætis, in the neighbourhood of the modern Seville, became afterwards famous as the birthplace of both Trajan and Hadrian. The settlement of Carteia received the rights of a Latin colony in 171 B.C. Liv. xliii. 3.



Term of military service.



of the legions.

Composition of the legions.

to Rome. It seemed that the troops would not submit to be kept any longer in the province.'

Military service must have assumed the character of a profession sooner among the officers than among the common soldiers. A man could be qualified for a post of command only by serving some length of time. An able legionary tribune would be sure of being re-elected when new armies were formed. This was likewise the case with the centurions. These two classes of officers of inferior rank occupied a position in the army similar to that of the clerks (scribæ publici) of the magistrates in what may be called the civil service. They were well versed in the technical part of military duty, and without the assistance of such subalterns the generals could no more have undertaken the supreme command in the field than the magistrates could have conducted the administration in peace without a staff of well-drilled clerks. As we have already seen, and as appears from the nature of the case, the cavalry assumed the character of a standing army even before the infantry. It takes a longer time for a horseman than for a foot-soldier to learn the service; and a cavalry horse once trained must of course be continually looked after and kept in serviceable condition, a task which can be best performed by its own rider.

Thus circumstances contributed on all sides to the formation of a distinct military class, more or less separated from the generality of the citizens who were engaged in peaceable pursuits. But it was But it was a principle strictly adhered to in the good time of the republic that the Roman legions should consist only of Roman citizens and Italian allies (socii). No troops were allowed to be

'Liv. xl. 35. The messengers of Flaccus reported to the senate that it was absolutely necessary to let the army return from Spain: ita enim obstinatos esse milites, ut non ultra retineri posse in provincia viderentur, iniussuque abituri inde essent, si non dimitterentur, aut in perniciosam, si quis impense retineret, seditionem exarsuri. Ib. c. 36.

2 On the election of military tribunes see Becker-Marquardt, Röm. Alterth. iii. 2, p. 276.

levied in the provinces. However, in times of distress this principle was sometimes disregarded, and during the Hannibalic war we find frequent mention of irregular troops, raised beyond Italy, and according to no fixed, acknowledged rules, but as circumstances permitted and dictated.' Such troops may have been employed more often than it would appear from the scanty mention of the historians; but the relations of the provincials to Rome would have been entirely altered if they had been called upon to furnish troops regularly. As a rule, they were excluded from military service, and thus they remained weak and spiritless subjects, void of the feeling of dignity and selfrespect.



A striking anomaly in the military system of the Irregular Romans, which was, on the whole, so strictly regulated, was exhibited by the corps of irregulars formed as early as the Hannibalic war, by commanders enjoying local influence and popularity. Thus the farmer of taxes T. Pomponius Veientanus, in the year 213 в.C., waged war against Hannibal, in Bruttium, with an army collected by himself; 2 and P. Scipio completed his forces (205 B.C.) by about seven thousand volunteers, composed of Umbrians, Sabines, and other Italians. The town of Camerinum alone sent him a cohort of six hundred men; and other towns voluntarily contributed provisions, arms, and materials for fitting out the fleet. This manner of obtaining armies and military stores is either a sign of great distress or an indication of the decline of a state. In Rome it was the former. At a later period, in the civil wars, ambitious leaders followed the example set them by the patriots of old, and collected armies willing to obey them alone personally, without regard to the constituted authorities.

Such irregulars are called tumultuarii milites,' because they were raised in case of panic (tumultus) or sudden alarm and danger. Liv. xxxvi. 2, n 7: Si tumultus in Hispania esset, placere tumultuarios milites extra Italiam scribi a prætore. Liv. xxxv. 23, 8; xxxvii. 2, 8.

2 Vol. ii. p. 318.

Vol. ii. p. 418.

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