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Display in Roman warfare: The appearance of armies and individuals on the battlefield

Gilliver, Catherine Mary 2007. Display in Roman warfare: The appearance of armies and individuals on the battlefield. War in History 14 (1) , pp. 1-21. 10.1177/0968344507071038

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Abstract

The paper discusses the appearance of Roman armies in battle and the contribution of arms and equipment to intimidating displays in the spectacle of pitched battle. After arguing for similarity of equipment in the Roman army but not uniformity, the paper considers the personalization of equipment by soldiers as a means of self-advertisement and individual visibility in battle to ensure reward for courageous actions. This behaviour is linked to the Roman army’s origins in the warrior society of early Rome. The paper concludes with a discussion of the significance of wearing military decorations in battle, contra Maxfield’s argument (The Military Decorations of the Roman Imperial Army, 1981) that soldiers did not wear decorations in battle.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D051 Ancient History
Publisher: Sage
ISSN: 09683445
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 01:51
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/3878

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