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Thread: The Rise and Fall of the Roman Republic

  1. #81
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    After all this it seems as if Carthage is nothing more then a paper tiger now. Some very good luck for you, although you would most probably have won of course even if Carthage wouldn't have been weakened by civil war and decades of war with Pontus.


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  2. #82
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    Chapter XVIII - The Sicilian Campaign (167 BC)

    A. The central Mediterranean (175 - 167 BC)

    After the stabilization of the country, that included the defeat of the last rebellious strongholds in Iberia, Carthage continued its War against Pontus and could achieve some successes in the late 170s, when Corsica, Sardinia and Sicily were liberated, so Malta was the last island that remained occupied.

    After that, the focus of the war returned to Iberia, while in the central Mediterranean developed a power vacuum, that encouraged the rise of several rebellious movements. In 167 BC, whole Sicily was under control of the insurgents and finally one of their leaders, Aleos Peneid, established the Kingdom of Epirus in eastern Sicily with Syracuse being the capital.


    Fig. 17: The central Mediterranean in 167 BC


    The Senate of Rome was confronted with a new country on Sicily and according to Sutonius, it finally decided to send an envoy to Syracuse in order to offer Rome`s friendship and protection. This immediately changed, when news arrived, that Crete had declared war on Epirus.

    Rome realized, that Epirus was too weak to defend itself against this attack. Since Rome didn`t want to attack Crete in order to prevent Epirus becoming part of a Cretan empire, it came to the conclusion, that the only way to hamper it, was the occupation of Epirus by Rome`s Legions(74).

    B. Progress

    The VI. Legion was stationed in southern Italy(75). When Appius Claudius Caudex arrived in Croton, he took command and immediately began to embark it(76).

    The campaign was extremely short. Upon his arrival at Syracuse Appius learned, that the Epirote forces were unorganized and weak. He send an ultimatum to the new King Aleos to surrender within one day. Aleos rejected, so Appius charged and took the city within a week. Two days after the surrender of the last Epirote defenders, a Cretan fleet arrived at the scene. When it realized the new situation, it instantaneously returned home.

    C. Results

    This episode, that lead to a completely roman Sicily(77), was another result of the ongoing "Centennial War" between Carthage and Pontus, that lead to a progressing dissolution of the Carthaginian empire.

    Although Rome was once again the beneficiary of it, the whole situation was a political dilemma. According to Flavius there was a strong pro-Hellenic faction within the Senate(78), that opposed this war despite the political implications of a Cretan Sicily. In the aftermath, Rome`s Treasury decreased significantly in order to maintain the social harmony(79).


    (74) Sutonius` report is an interesting insight into the politics of the 2nd Century BC. The whole eastern Mediterranean was a complicated network of Alliances. Crete was allied with Macedonia, that again was allied with the Seleucid Empire. Obviously Rome considered a Sicily being part of this network as threat.
    (75) The Legio VI Victrix had been there since its recruitment around 210 BC. Thus, Schumpeter`s theory of the Sicily Campaign being long planned due to the "accidental" presence of this unit is rather unfounded.
    (76) Appius Claudius was one of the Censors and assigned to be the roman envoy to Epirus. According to Sutonius, he was close to Croton, when the message of the Senate`s new policy reached him.
    (77) Sutonius reports, that shortly after the fall of Syracuse a messenger from the insurgents in western Sicily brought their bid to join Rome.
    (78) Rome was the protecting power of the Achaean League for more than 20 years at that point.
    (79) Sutonius reports about several large rituals and public feasts to distract the population. But probably large sums were spend to bribe the critic Senators too.

  3. #83
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    I will refrain from any comment on your continued highly innovative deployment of the 'invade to save them from someone else CB'. Presume note 79 refers to the populists being a pain again? But it does look like the Western Med is going to be yours almost by default if Carthage does implode.
    Remember, whatever the question, the answer on 18 September is Yes ...

  4. #84
    Lt. General Stuckenschmidt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    Presume note 79 refers to the populists being a pain again?
    Nah. The point was, that I had to accept the -2 stability drop when DoW`ing Epirus. Actually I didn`t want to, but these fricking Cretans made me do it. You see, Rome is the victim here.

  5. #85
    Human Enewald's Avatar
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    We had 'accidentally' an army on your border so we decided to 'accidentally' protect you by 'accidentally' conquering you?
    Impressive!

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    Chapter XIX - The 2nd Gaul War (160 BC)

    A. Situation in Gaul (197 - 161BC)

    After the collapse of the Parisian realm in 197 BC, it seems, that the Parisii aggressively tried to build up a new Kingdom by expanding to the northeast into the territory of the Eburones. After two decades of constant quarrels, the Senones intervened from the south in favor of the Eburones and completely annexed the former territory of the Parisii, probably in the early 160s.

    In the following years, they could expand their influence into the tribal territories of the Pictones and Bellovaci. Thus, the Senones controlled most parts of northern / northwestern Gaul, while the Eburones still settled in today`s Belgium / northern France.

    In 160 BC, Rome decided to attack the Eburones.

    B. Progress

    Although we have little knowledge about this war, there is no doubt, that Rome had stationed three Legions in Gaul. The II. and VIII. in the north, the XII. in the west(80).

    Fig. 18: Gaul in late 161 BC


    In early 160 BC, the two northern Legions advanced into the territory of the Eburones under the command of Numerius Fabius Asina, the young and, as we might suggest, militarily skilled governor of Belgica. He marched to the northwest, and after only three months he seized Nemetocenna(81), the former capital of the Atrebates.

    Shortly after, there must have been negotiations with the Eburonic Chief, that acknowledged Rome`s claim to the seized territories.

    Fig. 19: Gaul in late 160 BC


    C. Result

    The roman sources are very scarce, when it comes to the 2nd Gaul War. Historians quote three theses for that:

    1. "Not justified". Although reports from northern Gaul are rare for the period from 197 - 161 BC, there is no sign for a tense coexistence between Eburones and Rome. This leads to the conclusion, that the 2nd Gaul War was simply another step in Rome`s strategy to gain control over whole Gaul and that there was no "reason" for this expansion, that would have justified such an aggressive move. So there was no need to explain an event, that didn`t fit into official annal-writing.

    2. "Not important". For the common Roman, northern Gaul was a random place in the middle of (by roman standards) uncivilized and largely unknown territory. We might assume, that he didn`t made distinctions between the several tribes or showed interest into their societal structure, political relations among each other or their culture. Thus, an elaborated display of this event had hardly found a large base of interested readers.

    3. "Not successful". A third and more recent approach is the analysis of things, that didn`t happen. Vogondy(82) applies attention to the deployment of roman troops. Especially the fact, that one Legion had been sufficient to defeat the Eburones and that a third Legion had been moved from Iberia to the Gaul Atlantic coast. He comes to the conclusion, that Rome either feared or maybe even anticipated, that the Senones would intervene in support of their Eburonic neighbors, but obviously nothing happened.

    At this moment of time, there is a consensus, that probably all three theses have a share on the truth. Undoubtedly, the 2nd Gaul War was another, yet no crucial victory for Rome, although it encircled the Senones (thus limiting their possibilities for expansion) and granted access to the English Channel (thus bringing Britannia within roman sight).

    (80) It is an interesting fact, that the Legio XII. Iovia`s usual base was in northern Iberia.
    (81) Today Arras
    (82) Charles Vogondy, "Eagles over Gaul", 2006

  7. #87
    Human Enewald's Avatar
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    What is Britannia good for? Investing in fog?

  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enewald View Post
    What is Britannia good for? Investing in fog?
    What has logic to do with imperialistic expansion? Stop confusing my soldiers!
    Last edited by Stuckenschmidt; 13-02-2011 at 14:46.

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  10. #90
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    Chapter XX - Establishing the border (269 - 154 BC)

    A. The Danube

    In 269 BC, when Rome came in touch with the Danube for the first time in the course of the Dalmatian Campaign, it realized its potential to serve as natural border. During the next 55 years, Rome extended its control of the lower course of the Danube, until the colonization of the Piephigian territory along the Black Sea around 204 BC finished this first stage of occupation.

    In 188 BC, in order to secure the eastern Alpine foreland, Rome pushed into the territory of the Marcomanni(83), where they hit upon the Danube again. Rome`s geographical knowledge of all territories north of the Alps was extremely limited, so we might assume, that it took some years before they realized, that it was the same river. In the following decades, Rome expanded massively into Raetia and Pannonia to reach the Danube. With the establishment of colonies in the tribal area of the Quadi in 155 BC, the whole river was under roman control.

    B. The Rhine

    During the Sequanian Campaign 218 BC, Rome gained control over the source and headwater of the Rhine river. Just one year later, they occupied the territory of the Langones and their capital Andematunnum(84).

    During the next three decades, when Rome`s focus changed to southeast and southwest Europe, just little progress was made. This changed with the colonization of the area around Durocortum(85). The Second Gaul War laid the groundwork for the final push toward the mouth of the Rhine, that came in 155 (liquidation of the Eburonic realm) and 154 BC (colonization of the Messapian territory).

    C. A distinct boundary

    There has been a long debate about the nature of Rome`s efforts to secure the Rhine-Danube-border. The current leading opinion within the academia is, that this line was intended to be a permanent border.

    Right from the start, Rome established a Limes along the rivers, that consisted of a system of control towers, with small camps in regular distances. In the area between Rhine and Danube, a simple fortification of a ditch and a mound with stakes on top marked the border between the Republic and Germania(86). Along the rivers, Rome had four Legions stationed to secure this border(87).


    Fig. 20: The Roman Republic in 154 BC
    (I - XIII: Legionary Camps)


    There are still debates about why the Republic suddenly stopped to expand northwards and established a solid border. The probably most important reason was, that the Republic did not control all territories on its own side of the border around 150 BC. Especially Gaul and Greece were largely controlled by countries and tribes, that were neutral toward the Republic at best. Thus, establishing a stable Limes was a good way to keep one`s rear clear, since the Republic had to change its focus toward the south again(88).

    Another reason might have been, that beyond the border was nothing, that would have justified a large campaign. Compared to the developed and prosperous territories in southern Italy or Greece, Germania was a primitive and poor country. The anticipated tax revenues were probably not high enough to compensate an expensive campaign. Nevertheless Rome did influence Germania. Findings of items of Roman origin far away from the Limes indicate active trading.


    (83) A germanic tribe, that originally settled at the Alpine foothills, but migrated north toward Bohemia in order to avoid roman rule. They returned more than 300 years later and it made Rome hard work to repel their invasion during the Marcomannic Wars 166 - 180 AD.
    (84) Today Langres.
    (85) Or Durocortorum, today Reims.
    (86) One must keep in mind, that the main purpose of the Limes was to control the border traffic. Apart from that it was an early warning system and the Legions were the reaction forces to counter serious threats, who could not have been repelled by the Limes itself.
    (87) Additional to the Legions, there were garrison forces to man the control towers. Estimations vary, but it is believed, that between 100.000 and 130.000 men guarded the whole northern border in 150 BC.
    (88) Also in 154 BC, the "Centennial War" between Carthage and Pontus ended and the following events solicited Rome`s attention.
    Last edited by Stuckenschmidt; 14-02-2011 at 22:11.

  11. #91
    Field Marshal loki100's Avatar
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    Germania was a primitive and poor country
    ... and, of course, full of Vandals (somewhere)

    Also in 154 BC, the "Centennial War" between Carthage and Pontus ended and the following events solicited Rome`s attention
    umhh this seems rather significant and relegated to a footnote too?
    Remember, whatever the question, the answer on 18 September is Yes ...

  12. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    umhh this seems rather significant and relegated to a footnote too?
    That`s why the next Chapter will be an excursus into the overall situation in and around Carthage.

  13. #93
    Human Enewald's Avatar
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    Germania is not poor. Just a bit under-invested.

  14. #94
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    Chapter XXI - Excursus I: Carthaginian history (750 - 154 BC)

    A. Carthage`s origin and development until the 3rd Century (750 - 280 BC)

    Superficially seen, there are a lot of similarities between Rome and Carthage. They were founded roughly about the same time(89). Both cities started as Kingdoms, and turned into an oligarchic Republic. Both cities had three constitutional institutions. In Carthage, there were the two Suffets(90), a Senate and a popular assembly.

    But there are also clear distinctions. Carthage started as colony of the Phoenician city of Tyre under the name Qart Hadast(91), that gained independence, when Tyre became part of the Neo-Babylonian empire in the middle of the 6th Century BC. Afterwards, Carthage quickly established supremacy over the other Phoenician cities in the western Mediterranean and founded numerous colonies in Iberia, Africa, the Balearics, Corsica, Sardinia and Sicily(92). In 400 BC, when Rome was at the edge of being sacked by the Celts, Carthage already mastered an empire and was the dominating power in the western Mediterranean.

    In the early 3rd Century BC, Carthage controlled southern Spain, the north African coast from Gibraltar to the Cyrenaica and all Islands in the western Mediterranean except Sicily, whose eastern parts belonged to the Kingdom of Epirus.


    Fig. 21: Carthage in 280 BC


    B. Expansionism in the western Mediterranean (280 - 250 BC)

    In the next three decades, Carthage consolidated its power. In the 270`s it annexed the African Kingdom of Numidia. In the 260`s it expanded its colonial empire in Iberia and conquered the tribal Kingdom of the Lusitani in today`s Portugal. Carthage`s power culminated in the year 259 BC, when it seized the Kingdom of Epirus, what extended its influence over whole Sicily and established a foothold in the Balkans.


    Fig. 22: Carthage in 250 BC


    C. Declining power during the "Centennial War" (249 - 154 BC)

    In 250 BC, Carthage attacked the Kingdom of Macedonia in order to increase its influence in the Balkans. The Pontic Kingdom supported Macedonia and declared war on Carthage, what was the beginning of nearly 100 years of constant fighting(93).

    Militarily spoken, Pontus never lost the initiative. During the whole war, most of the western Mediterranean islands were occupied and Pontic armies conducted campaigns in Iberia and Libya.

    From the economic and societal perspective, it was a catastrophic century for Carthage. Tax revenues were cut due to occupied territories and areas devastated by Pontic or Barbarian forces. The steady burdens lead to local revolts or complete civil wars, when parts of the Carthaginian Empire seceded or got conquered, with the Roman Republic being Carthage`s successor in Sicily and large parts of southern Iberia.

    Although we have no reports, we may suggest, that Pontus was equally hampered in its economic development and exhausted from the war costs(94). Finally, in 154 BC, Carthage agreed to sign a peace treaty and cede the province of Epirus to Pontus(95).


    Fig. 23: Carthage at the end of the Centennial War


    D. Future threats

    The end of the Centennial War was largely a result of an even greater threat, when an alliance of Seleucia and Egypt declared war on Carthage in early 154 BC. Although the war with Egypt was soon over, with Carthage losing the province of Corniclanum(96), the war with Seleucia and its allies continued.


    (89) Dionysius of Halicarnassus says, that Carthage was founded 814 BC. Latest findings suggest a date somewhere in the middle/late 8th Century BC.
    (90) Since their authorities were more extensive than those of the roman Consuls, they were mistaken for Kings by some roman authors.
    (91) It means "New City" and was probably chosen to distinguish it from the older colony of Utica. In 227 BC, Carthage established another Qart Hadast in Iberia. The Romans called it Carthago Nova and is known today as Cartagena.
    (92) In contrast to colonies founded by Greek cities, Carthaginian colonies were not independent and got ruled by their mother city.
    (93) Although the original quarrel between Carthage and Macedonia was settled as early as 245 BC, when both parties agreed to return to the status quo ante bellum.
    (94) Gaius Tiberius, a Tribune in the IV. Legion, reports in 160 BC, that a Pontic army in western Iberia consisted of no more than 2.000 soldiers.
    (95) Additionally, Pontus received a reparation payment of 80 attic Talents (= 2,88 tons) of silver.
    (96) Plus another payment of 250 attic Talents (= 9 tons) of silver.
    Last edited by Stuckenschmidt; 26-03-2011 at 12:29.

  15. #95
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    100 years of war and a single province changes hands - that is an impressively pointless war, but very helpful for your designs
    Remember, whatever the question, the answer on 18 September is Yes ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by loki100 View Post
    100 years of war and a single province changes hands - that is an impressively pointless war, but very helpful for your designs
    Indeed. Since I gained seven Carthaginian provinces one could say, that Rome won the war.

  17. #97
    So now your going after Carthage when there still at war with the seleucids?
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    Wow - the amount of territory exchanged in that conflict with Carthage makes World War I look like a blitzkreig!

    Nice AAR though - you've got a new reader
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  19. #99
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    This made me once more interested in buying EU: Rome. This AAR makes it look fun again.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Middelkerke View Post
    So now your going after Carthage when there still at war with the seleucids?
    Kind of obvious, isn`t it.

    The Punic War will begin today. Since I don`t know, how long it will take, the next update is not due before Friday (at best, since it will be a long one).

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