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Bitka kod Telamona

Bitka kod Telamona


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Još od 4. stoljeća prije nove ere, galska plemena sjeverne Italije sukobila su se sa sve većom Rimskom republikom. 225. godine prije nove ere, Boii su sklopili saveze sa sunarodnim galskim plemenima u sjevernoj Italiji i sa plemenima iz cijelog Alpa. Pan-galska vojska napala je Rim, ali su ih presrele tri moćne rimske vojske. Zarobljeni na rtu Telamon, brojniji Gali su vodili tešku borbu, ali su na kraju poraženi. Bitka kod Telamona označila je opadanje galskog bogatstva u ratu s Rimom za sjevernu Italiju.

PROLOG

Nakon spaljivanja i pljačke Rima 390. godine prije nove ere, galska plemena sjeverne Italije u više su se navrata sukobljavala s oživljavajućom i rastućom Rimskom republikom. Rim je rat odveo Galijama i 284. godine prije nove ere pobijedio Senone i potpuno opustošio njihovu zemlju (moderna Romagna). Moćni Boii, koji su živjeli sjeverno od Senonesa, zauzvrat su napali rimsko srce. Boii su, međutim, pretrpjeli poraze i 282. godine prije nove ere pristali su na mirovni sporazum.

Prošlo je 50 godina prije nego što su se zemlje Senones oporavile dovoljno za naseljavanje rimskih građana. Uspostavljanje rimske kolonije Sena Gallacia duž obale zabrinulo je Boije, koji su se opravdano plašili daljnjeg prodora Rimljana u Galliju Cisalpinu (Galija južno od Alpa). Odrastala je nova generacija Boii, "puna nepregledne strasti i apsolutno bez iskustva u patnji i opasnostima" (Polibije, The Histories, II. 21). Bili su spremni obnoviti rat s Rimom. Boii su tražili pomoć od galskih plemena sjeverno od Alpa (galska Transalpina), ali njihov prvi pokušaj završio je svađom tokom koje su ubijena dva kralja Transalpine. U sjeverozapadnoj Italiji, međutim, moćne Insubre bile su spremne za borbu s Boijima.

Zajedno su Boii i Insubres poslali ambasadore preko Alpa, ovaj put tražeći pomoć od Gaesatae koji su živjeli u blizini Rone. Ambasadori su mamili Gaesatae kraljeve Concolitanusa i Aneroestusa pričama o galskoj hrabrosti i zlatnim darovima, malim uzorkom onoga što se moglo opljačkati od Rimljana. "Nikada ta oblast Galija nije poslala tako veliku silu ili onu sastavljenu od ljudi tako uglednih ili tako ratobornih", napisao je Polibije (Polibije, The Histories, II. 22).

Pripreme za rat

225. godine prije nove ere, Gaesatae su prešle Alpe kako bi se pridružile svojim saveznicima - sada uključujući kontingent Tauriscija sa južnih padina Alpa - u ravnici rijeke Po. Ipak, nisu sva plemena Gallia Cisalpina željela rat s Rimom. Prorimski Veneti i Cenomani zaprijetili su zemljama plemena koja su krenula u borbu protiv Rima. Koalicija Boii je stoga morala osigurati da iza sebe ostane dovoljno ratnika kako bi zaštitili svoje domovine. Čak i tada, vojska koja se okupila bila je najveća pan-galska vojska koja je ikada marširala na Rim, sa preko 20.000 konjanika i 50.000 pješaka.

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Okupljena vojska bila je najveća pan-galska vojska koja je ikada marširala na Rim, sa preko 20.000 konjanika i 50.000 pješaka.

Za razliku od prije dva stoljeća, kada su Rim opljačkali Gali, Rim više nije bio samo grad-država, već republika koja je postavila temelj carstva. Nakon što je učvrstio svoju vlast na poluostrvskoj Italiji, Rim je izašao kao pobjednik u Prvom punskom ratu (264-241 pne) i uspostavio se kao velika sila na Mediteranu. Kaljena u borbi s bezbroj nacija, rimska vojska postala je sve veća i bolja.

Prijetnja galske vojske prestrašila je cijelu poluostrvsku Italiju da podigne desetine hiljada vojnika u pomoć Rimljanima. Saveznici Sabini, Samniti, Lukanci, Marsi i mnoštvo drugih pješaka i konjanika pridružili su se rimskim legijama. Preko 150.000 ljudi bilo je spremno za borbu pod rimskom zastavom, stacionirano u tri vojske; u Etruriji, na jadranskoj obali i na Sardiniji.

AMBUSH U FAESULAEU

Gali su ušli u Etruriju preko puta u sjevernim Apeninskim planinama. Pošto nisu naišli na protivljenje, pljačkali su na putu za Rim. Bili su unutar tri dana od grada kada su njihovi izviđači izvijestili da je iza njih velika rimska vojska. Bio je to onaj iz Etrurije i do zalaska sunca privukao se pred Galima.

Kako su se obje vojske smjestile u kamp za noć, Gali su razmišljali šta im je činiti. Rimska vojska je morala biti znatne veličine, jer umjesto da ponude bitku, Gali su smislili trik. Noću je galska pješadija krenula prema obližnjem gradu Faesulae. Konjica je ostala iza logorske vatre tako da Rimljani ujutro nisu znali kamo je galska pješadija otišla. Pod pretpostavkom da su potonji pobjegli, Rimljani su krenuli na galsku konjicu, koja je poletjela prema Faesulae. Nakon potjere, Rimljani su upali u zasjedu od strane galske pješadije koja je napala iz šume i grmlja u blizini Faesulae. Galska konjica sada se okretala tako da su Rimljani bili uhvaćeni između pješaštva i konjice.

Rimljani su sada bili u velikoj vezi, ali disciplina i obuka su se isplatili. Legije i njihovi saveznici uspjeli su izvesti borbeno povlačenje. Iako su pretrpjeli gubitak od 6.000, glavnina vojske uspjela je doći do odbrambenog položaja na obližnjem brdu. Ovdje su se borili protiv Gala, koji su, prethodnu noć malo spavali, bili dodatno iscrpljeni borbama uzbrdo. Kako nisu mogli istisnuti Rimljane, Gali su se povukli i povukli da se oporave od borbi, ostavljajući dio konjice da pazi na Rimljane.

U međuvremenu, konzul Lucije Aemilius Papus, zapovjednik rimske vojske na Jadranu, saznao je za galske provale i silom je marširao svoje ljude preko Apenina. Stigao je neposredno nakon bitke kod Faesulae. Dok se noć spuštala na kopno, Papus je podigao kamp. Njegov dolazak prirodno je ohrabrio Rimljane na brdu i, obrnuto, predstavljao je veliki problem za Gale. Budući da su Gali već odveli brojne robove, stoku i pljačku, kralj Gaesatae Aneroestes smatrao je da bi bilo pametnije vratiti se u svoju domovinu s onim što su već imali i vratiti se kako bi se kasnije obračunali s Rimljanima. Tako je noću, galska vojska ponovo skliznula u mrak. Zaklonjeni od Rimljana na sjeveru i šumovitim brežuljcima na istoku i zapadu, Gali su krenuli prema jugu.

Sutradan su se dvije rimske vojske spojile i slijedile Galije u povlačenju. Kad se teren otvorio na jezeru Bolsena, Gali su udarili prema zapadu, za eturijsku obalu. Kad su stigli do obale, krenuli su natrag na sjever, nadajući se da će doći do rijeke Po i njihovih domovina. Rimska vojska, podjednako glomazna s vlastitim vlakom za opskrbu, vučnim životinjama, stokom i vješalicama, slijedila je galsku vojsku.

RAT TELAMON

Između rimske i galske vojske, u blizini rta Telamon, uz put se uzdizalo blago brdo. U želji da osvoji brdo prije Gala, Regulus je lično poveo svoju konjicu prema brdu. Galska vojska još uvijek nije bila svjesna nove rimske prijetnje sa sjevera. Špijunirajući rimsku konjicu koja je krenula prema brdu, Gali su mislili da ih je nadmašila Papusova konjica koja je dolazila s leđa. Gali su poslali svoju konjicu i lake okršaje da zauzmu brdo i uzeli su neke zarobljenike u borbi. Zatvorenici su im rekli mračnu istinu; trebali su biti uhvaćeni između dvije ogromne rimske vojske.

Ovaj put Galima nije bilo spasa. Boii i Taurisci formirali su se kako bi dočekali Regulusovu vojsku koja im se približavala s prednje strane. Gaesatae i Insubres su se okrenuli prema Papusovoj vojsci koja je prilazila s leđa. Galska kola i vagoni formirali su se na bokovima, dok je mali odred odnio plijen na susjedna brda.

Na brdu pored puta besnila je konjička gužva. Regulus je zadobio smrtni udarac, a jezivi trofej njegove glave odnesen je nazad galskim kraljevima. Gali su, međutim, imali malo vremena za veselje zbog Regulusove smrti jer je Papusova vojska odmah stigla na scenu. Papus je povukao svoje legije prema Galima i poslao svoju konjicu da pomogne rimskoj konjici angažovanoj na brdu.

Rimska pješadija sada je odredila veličinu svojih neprijatelja. Iako su bili dobro obučeni i naoružani, rimski legionari bili su građani koji su uzimani od stanovništva tokom rata. Iako su imali čast da se bore za Rim, oni nisu bili profesionalni vojnici. Za njih su neprijatelji bili divljački varvari.

[Rimljani] su bili prestravljeni dobrim redom keltskog domaćina i užasnom bukom, jer je bilo bezbroj trubača i trubača, a kako je cijela vojska istovremeno uzvikivala njihove ratne povike, došlo je do takvog buka da se činilo da nisu samo trube i vojnici, već i čitava zemlja dobili glas i uhvatili plač. (Polibije, The Histories, II. 29)

Visoki, crvenokosi i crvenokosi galski ratnici skupili su hrabrost, vičući i gestikulirajući kopljima, mačevima i štitovima. Potonji im je bio glavna odbrana, obično ovalni i obojeni vrtloženim uzorcima. Mnogi su nosili i bronzane kacige, ukrašene rogovima, perjanicama ili keltskim simbolom rata, kotačem. Samo su se poglavari i ratnici hvalili poštanskim oklopom. Većina je nosila tipične raznobojne, karirane hlače i ogrtače popularne među Galima. Nisu tako Gaesatae, koji su u pokazivanju hrabrosti i jedinstva s prirodom u borbu krenuli goli, noseći samo momente, narukvice i narukvice.

Rimski konzuli otvorili su bitku sa lakim trupama koje su strujale kroz rupe manipul, primarne taktičke jedinice rimskih legija sa 60-120 ljudi. Hiljade vojnika koji su nosili vučje, jazavčeve i druge životinjske kože na kacigama i nosili male okrugle štitove bacili su svoje male koplje na prvi rang Gala. Galovim kopljima i praćkama nedostajao je domet da uzvrate vatru, pa su galski ratnici čučali iza svojih velikih štitova dok su smrtonosne rimske rakete zviždale među njima. Najviše su stradale gole Gaesate. Bijesni zbog svoje nemoći, najhrabriji od njih jurnuli su naprijed, ali su ih kopljem nabili prije nego što su se mogli približiti svojim neprijateljima.

Začule su se trube, a tlo se zatreslo ispod skitnice desetina hiljada legionara maniples napredovao prema galskoj hordi. Prvi manipli linija, hastati, ispalio je Gale još jednom hitac kopljem. Gvozdene glave njihovih teških pilum koplja su bodljikava i ostala su zaglavljena u galskim štitovima. Dok su Gali pokušavali izvući koplje iz štitova hastati izvadili kratke mačeve i navalili.

Gali su zamahnuli svojim moćnim mačevima u velikim lukovima, raskomadavši štitove i zagrizavši bronzu rimskih kaciga. Rimljani su pak izbodeni kratkim mačevima. Budući da im je potrebno manje prostora po ratniku, predstavili su čvršći štitni zid. Rimljani su uživali u daljoj prednosti u tome što su bili duguljasti skut, štit savijen unatrag, obuhvaćajući dio tijela nosioca. Ispod štita, izložena naprijed rimska noga bila je zaštićena čvarcima. The hastati nosili su i naprsnike, dok su druga i treća rimska linija, principes i triarii, nosio lančanu poštu.

S vještinom, grubom silom i hrabrošću, nadmašeni i okruženi Gali su se držali. Neko vrijeme čak je izgledalo da bi bitka mogla ići u oba smjera. Međutim, konjička bitka na brdu već je završila rimskom pobjedom. Galska konjica je pobjegla, ostavljajući rimskim konjanicima slobodno da priteknu u pomoć svojim drugovima u ravnici ispod. Niz brdo su zagrmili rimski konji, koplja im se zarezala u bokove galske pješadije. Gali su u panici pukli, ali su obrubljeni sa svih strana bili isječeni na komade.

Posljedice

40.000 Galija je ubijeno, a 10.000 zarobljeno za tržište robova. Među zarobljenicima bio je i kralj Konkolitan. Kralj Aneroestes je pobjegao, ali savladan tugom si je oduzeo život. Papus je poslao galski plijen u Rim, da bi bio vraćen vlasnicima. Potom je poveo svoju vojsku prema zemljama Boija kako bi se osvetio, spalio i ubio. Papus se vratio kući da proslavi rimski trijumf, pokazujući svoj plijen i zarobljenike.

U nizu kampanja koje su uslijedile nakon bitke kod Telamona, Rimljani su razbili galski otpor u sjevernoj Italiji. Nakon rimske pobjede kod Klastidija, 222. godine prije nove ere, većina Galija se podvrgla rimskoj vlasti. Galski otpor oživio je Hanibalovom invazijom na Italiju i nastavio se još deset godina nakon Drugog punskog rata (218-201.pne). Boii su posljednji odustali 191. pne. Odbijajući živjeti pod rimskim jarmom, odlutali su do Podunavlja gdje su dali ime Češkoj. Rimski putevi i kolonije proširili su se po Galiji Cisalpini, koja je do sredine 2. stoljeća prije nove ere već bila italijanizirana.


Blademaster Telaamon

Blademaster Telaamon je Lightforged draenei koji se nalazi na Krokuunu. Rođen je na Argusu i jedan od draeneja koji su pobjegli Genedar, svjedočeći kako Burning Legion pretvara svijet u gorku, mrtvu ljusku. ΐ ] Kasnije će se preseliti u Xenedar i postao jedan od Lightforgeda.

U sadašnjosti, on je majstor oštrica snaga kapetana Fareeye u Armiji svjetla, koji je bio u procesu osiguranja područja u Mac'Areeu za proroka Velena zajedno s velikim osvetnikom Sorvosom i Baraatom Longshotom kada se Goreća legija srušila dole na njih. Njihov kapetan je zatim poslao naređenje da se pregrupiraju sa Poslanikom, preko avanturista trojici vojnika.

Telaamon će se kasnije pridružiti Savezu zajedno s ostatkom Armije Svjetlosti. Tokom Četvrtog rata, voljno se pridružio samoubilačkoj misiji u Nazmiru kako bi odmamio Horde od Dazar'alora dok je Alijansa izvršila invaziju. Kako je Telaamon objasnio Halfordu Wyrmbaneu, vidio je što se dogodilo s Argusom zbog nekontrolirane želje nekih njegovih ljudi za moći, a ako se Horda ne kontrolira, znao je da će se isto dogoditi i Azerothu.

Jaina Proudmoore zahvalio je Telaamonu na njegovoj plemenitoj žrtvi, nakon čega je odgovorio da se borio s Legijom duže od Jaininog poznatog porijekla, te da su svi njihovi putevi vodili natrag prema Svjetlu, a Telaamon se suočio s Rokhanom nedugo nakon toga. Α ] Na Krvavim vratima u Zuldazaru, Telaamon je zarobio Rokhana kojeg su ubrzo spasili hordski avanturisti. Β ] U Nazmiru je poslao zrcalne slike u borbu protiv vrača Kejabua i Jo'chunge. Avanturisti su pomogli zandalarijskim trolovima i pobijedili slike, oslabivši Telaamona. Γ ] U Hir'eekovom brlogu, Telaamon se još jednom borio sa trolovima, ali ovaj put je na kraju pao pod kombinovanom naletom Rokhana, Jo'chunge i Kejabua. Δ ]

Na kraju, Telaamon je bio spreman platiti bilo koju cijenu kako bi se osiguralo da nitko ne prođe kroz istu bol kao on, Ε ] i iako su ga ubile Horde, diverzija za koju su on i njegov tim dali svoje živote bila je uspješna. Ώ ] Nakon bitke za Dazar'alor, izviđači Saveza pronašli su njegovo rastrgano tijelo. Ζ ]


Bitka kod Telamona: galska vojska zarobljena između tri rimske vojske

Rimljani i Gali imali su ogorčeno rivalstvo koje je trajalo koliko i bilo koje drugo na svijetu. Jedan od najponižavajućih događaja u rimskoj povijesti bilo je gotovo potpuno zauzimanje Rima od strane Gala pod Brennom 390. godine prije Krista, što je dovelo Rimljane do neugodne isplate za mir.

Od tada, Rimljani i Gali su se brzo borili, a Gali su uvijek tražili lak plijen, a Rimljani su željeli dodati još zemlje i osloboditi svijet od odvratnih Galija.

Iako su Rimljani definitivno izašli iz angažmana 390. godine prije Krista ližući svoje rane, porasli su u sljedećem stoljeću, a neki i prije bitke kod Telamona.

Daleko od sistema falange, Rimljani su tokom svojih teških ratova protiv Samnita razvili novu manipularnu borbenu formaciju.

Nakon što su osvojili najveće talijanske rivale, Rimljani su svoju novu manipularnu formaciju stavili na kušnju protiv napadača Pira iz Epira, dokazanog zapovjednika s elitnom vojskom i slonovima. Rimljani su dokazali svoju hrabrost i odlučnost i konačno svrgli velikog zapovjednika.

Rim je tada započeo svoj prvi veliki rat izvan Italije protiv Kartagine. stječući vitalno zapovjedno iskustvo, Rimljani su iz rata izašli sigurniji u svoje pomorske sposobnosti i sa imanjima na otoku Sardiniji.

Gali su znali za rast Rima, ali ga nisu smatrali impozantnim, već su Rim vidjeli kao još privlačniju metu za pljačku. Gali su i dalje bili prisutni u sjevernoj Italiji, a pleme Boii nadalo se da će okupiti grupu koja će udariti ravno u sam Rim. Boii su okupili saveznike iz plemena Insubres i Taurisci i primili mnoge ratnike iz plemena Gaesatae.

Gaesate su bili neki od najstrašnijih ratnika ovog razdoblja, poznati po tome što su se borili gotovo ili potpuno goli i bili u ratnom transu tokom bitke. moguće je da su uzimali neke vrste lijekova kako bi ublažili bol od rana, jer se činilo da su u stanju nastaviti borbu kroz mnoge ozljede.

Kombinirana galska vojska sadržavala je 50.000 pješaka i 20.000 konjanika, što je više od standardne rimske vojske koja je tipično upola manja od te veličine. Na sreću, Rimljani su imali više vojski na tom području, dvije u sjevernoj Italiji i jednu stacioniranu na obližnjem otoku Sardiniji ako je bilo potrebno.

Rimljani su znali za masovnu galsku invaziju i okupili su hiljade savezničkih snaga da podrže svoje trupe. Jedna takva vojska naišla je na galske snage i dvije vojske su podigle kamp.

Sledećeg jutra Rimljani su ugledali ono što se činilo kao konjica u pozadini Galija koji su bežali. Postavljeni da jure kroz šumovito i brdovito područje, ali ih je čekala galska pješadija koja je čekala.

Plemena sjeverne Italije. Sémhur – CC-BY-SA-3.0

Ubijeno je oko 6.000 Rimljana, ali su vjerovatno zahvaljujući manipularnoj formaciji uspjeli reformirati i zauzeli obližnje brdo. Odavde su izdržali još napada dok nije stigla puna konzularna vojska pod Lucijem Papom.

Izgledi da se suoče sa novom vojskom i oporavak vojske iz prethodne bitke bili su preveliki za Gale, pogotovo jer su već prikupili pristojnu količinu plijena od upada.

Pogled na Talamone. Talamone – CC BY-SA 3.0

Odlučili su marširati kući kako bi se opskrbili i spremili svoj plijen prije nego što ponovo napadnu. Otišli su tokom noći s Rimljanima lako slijedeći tragove tako velike vojske.

Gali su bili duboko na rimskom teritoriju i morali su se provući kroz brda, ali imali su jasan udarac kući uz zapadnu obalu Italije, ili su barem tako mislili. Ubrzo je Galijina avangarda naletjela na izviđače rimske konjice, što je bilo zbunjujuće otkriće jer su trebali postaviti određenu udaljenost između druge dvije rimske vojske.

Karta Cisalpinske Galije, koja se proteže od Venecije na Jadranu, do Pise i Nice na Mediteranu, do Ženevskog jezera na zapadu i Alpa na sjeveru, od Abrahama Orteliusa i#8217 Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, prvog modernog atlasa svijeta . Antwerpen, 1608.

Izviđači su zapravo pripadali trećoj rimskoj vojsci, pod vodstvom Gaja Atilija Regula, sveže sa obližnjeg ostrva Sardinije, slučajno su se iskrcali severno od Galija koji su napredovali. Rimljani su sada imali tri vojske koje su okruživale Gale, bilo je i brda, ali Gali nisu mogli pobjeći. Poslane su poruke između rimskih zapovjednika i hitno je organiziran napad.

Gali su poslali svoje značajne konjičke snage da osiguraju obližnje brdo od vitalnog značaja za daljnje napredovanje, dok su formirali dvije linije u suprotnim smjerovima i usidrili bokove vagonima i kolima.

Borbu na brdu žestoko je osporavala rimska konjica predvođena Regulom, a vjerojatno i laka pješadija, jer broj konjice nema dovoljno smisla da rimska konjica sama drži zemlju.

Ipak, bila je to teška borba i dugo je jedino galska pješadija koja je čekala i Rimljani koji su polako napredovali mogli promatrati borbu. Papus je poslao vlastitu konjicu da pomogne u borbi na vrhu brda i oni će na kraju osigurati brdo nakon brutalnih borbi koje će Regululu obezglaviti.

Keltski mač i korica oko 60. godine prije Krista. PHGCOM – CC BY-SA 3.0

Hrabra galska pješadija bila je više nego spremna prihvatiti napad Rimljana, uprkos tome što su Rimljani imali možda 10-20.000 ljudi više. Sva hrabrost Gaesatae nije ih mogla pripremiti za suočavanje s novim rimskim načinom borbe koji je vodio bujičnim udarima koplja i iz okršaja i iz prvih redova pješadije.

Bez zaštitnog oklopa, Gaesate su desetkovane baražom, oni koji nisu ubijeni vjerojatno su teško ranjeni, a Rimljani su se uspjeli angažirati sa značajnom prednošću.

Rimski stil borbe sa intenzivnom upotrebom odbrane štita i brzim ubodnim pokretima njihovih mačeva suprotstavio se dugim napadima galskih dugih mačeva.

Čak i uz sve prednosti rimske pješadije, borba je bila pomno osporavana sve dok pobjednička rimska konjica nije uspjela zamahnuti i pronaći praznine u vagonima kako bi zaobišli Galije. Raspored trupa u bitci značio je da su Gali uglavnom posječeni na mjestu na kojem su stajali, s malim šansama za bijeg.

Oko 20.000 ljudi je pobjeglo, a ostali su ubijeni ili zarobljeni, u usporedbi s oko 10.000 rimskih žrtava, što je prilično visoko s obzirom na to da su imali brojnost i prednosti u položaju.

Bronzana kirasa, teška 2,9 kg, Grenoble, kraj 7. stoljeća - početak 6. stoljeća prije nove ere. PHGCOM – CC BY-SA 3.0

Rimska pobjeda uvelike je smanjila broj neprijateljskih ratnika u sjevernoj Italiji i organizirana je brza kaznena kampanja, prvenstveno usmjerena na Boije. Rimljani su bili na dobrom putu da konačno osiguraju ostatak Italije, ali 218. pne, zastrašujući Hanibal i njegovi slonovi stavili su taj cilj na nekoliko desetljeća, iako će Rimljani nastaviti ratovati protiv Galija u Italiji tokom drugog rata protiv Kartagine.

Bitka kod Telamona bila je sjajan primjer efikasnosti rimske vojne strukture. Zapovjednici možda nisu imali najveće pojedinačne vojske, ali efikasna komunikacija rezultirala je zarobljavanjem velike i opasne vojske, a dalja saradnja omogućila je armijama da istovremeno jurišaju na prednji i stražnji dio Gala.

S izuzetkom Hanibalovih pobjeda, rimske bi se vojske pokazale kao gotovo nezaustavljivi ovnovi na bojnom polju, koji su pobjedu za pobjedom osvajali jednostavno zahvaljujući svojoj superiornoj organizaciji i prilagodljivosti.


Bitka kod Telamona 225. pne

Tek tokom galskog povlačenja prema sjeveru, Polibije ponovo predstavlja drugog konzula, C. Atiliusa Regula. Nemamo detalje o njegovim aktivnostima na Sardiniji, a znamo samo da je bio zatočen dovoljno dugo da napusti istočnu Italiju nedovoljno zaštićenu, dopuštajući galskim plemenima da se probiju bez protivljenja. Moramo pretpostaviti da je, kada je galska vojska ipak napala zapadnu Italiju, poslanici bili poslani njemu u isto vrijeme kad i Aemilius na istoku. Ponovno, Polibije nam ne daje vremenski okvir, ali dok su se događaji događali u bitci kod Fezule, Atilius je naizgled završio svoju kampanju na Sardiniji (iako nam nije rečeno s kojim stupnjem uspjeha) i prenio je svoju vojsku preko Tirenskog mora do grad Pisa. Polibije navodi da je Atilius marširao južno prema Rimu, za koji je morao pretpostaviti da je bio namjeravani cilj galskih snaga. U ovom trenutku je jasno da nije znao za događaje u Fesulaeu niti da su Gali krenuli direktno prema njemu. On je prirodno poslao izviđače ispred glavnih snaga i oni su se prvi susreli sa povlačenom galskom vojskom u blizini grada Telamon (današnji Talamone) na Etrurijskoj obali:

Kad su se Kelti nalazili u blizini Telamona u Etruriji, njihovi napredni krmači naišli su na Caiusovu prethodnu stražu i zatočeni. Nakon što ih je konzul pregledao, ispričali su sve što se nedavno dogodilo i ispričali mu o prisustvu dvije vojske, navodeći da su Gali prilično blizu, a Lucije iza njih. Vijest ga je iznenadila, ali ga je ujedno i jako nadala, jer je mislio da je uhvatio Gale u maršu između dvije vojske.

Bitka kod Telamona (225. pne.) - Polibijska verzija

Tako je, promjenom okolnosti, Atilius otkrio da se njegovo bogatstvo drastično promijenilo jer se predugo zadržao na Sardiniji i propustio galsku invaziju, a sada je otkrio da je na odličnoj poziciji da se bori i porazi Gale, te je postavio svoju vojsku da se bori . Imamo sreću da imamo detaljnu priču o bitci sačuvanu u Polibiju, vjerovatno zasnovanu na prvim pričama Fabija Piktora:

Naredio je svojim Tribunama da legije dovedu u borbeni poredak i da napreduju tako marširajućim tempom sve dok priroda terena dopušta napad u skladu. I sam je sretno primijetio brdo koje se nalazi iznad ceste uz koju moraju proći Kelti, i povevši sa sobom konjicu, napredovao je punom brzinom, željan da zauzme greben brda prije njihovog dolaska i prvi započne bitku , uvjeren da će na taj način dobiti najveći dio zasluga za rezultat.

Čini se da je Atilius bio silno željan da sebi pripiše slavu pobjede nad Galima i zanemario je povezivanje s Emilijevom vojskom koja je pratila Gale. Još jednom se dva rimska zapovjednika nisu uspjela pravilno povezati i zadati odlučujući udarac Galima, te iskoristiti broj obje vojske koje hvataju Gale u klešta. Ipak, Atiliusova odlučnost mu je omogućila da odabere vlastito mjesto bitke i zauzme uzvišicu. Prvi sukob bitke bio je lagani okršaj između naprednih snaga galske konjice i pješadije i Atiliusove konjice na vrhu brda:

Kelti isprva nisu bili svjesni dolaska Atiliusa i prema onome što su vidjeli zamišljali su da je Aemilijeva konjica noću zaobišla njihov bok i zauzela položaj. Stoga su odmah poslali svoju konjicu i neke svoje lako naoružane trupe da ospore posjedovanje brda. Ali vrlo brzo su saznali za Caiusovo prisustvo od jednog od dovedenih zatvorenika.

Iako nam Polibije ne daje detalje o ovom prvom okršaju između dvije strane u Telamonu, njegova priča ipak ukazuje da su Gali uspjeli uzeti zarobljenike i tako utvrditi prirodu prijetnje s kojom su se suočili te da su mogli donijeti odgovarajuće taktičke odluke. Stoga se čini da je Atilius izgubio dio inicijative:

[Gali] nisu gubili vrijeme u sastavljanju svoje pješadije, raspoređivanju tako da su okrenuti i sprijeda i straga, budući da su, i prema obavještajnim podacima koji su do njih dopirali, i prema onome što im se događalo pred očima, znali da jedna vojska slijedi očekivali su da će sresti drugog ispred sebe.

Dok su se borbe nastavljale za brdo između Atiliusove konjice i Galija, sreća je opet bila naklonjena Rimljanima, jer je Emilije bio sada dovoljno blizu da sazna za Atiliusovo raspoloženje i posudi pomoć:

Aemilius, koji je čuo za iskrcavanje legija u Pisi, ali nije imao pojma da su mu već tako blizu, sada, kad je vidio kako se borba vodi oko brda, znao je da je druga rimska vojska prilično blizu. U skladu s tim, šaljući svoju konjicu u pomoć onima koji su se borili na brdu, sastavio je svoju pješadiju uobičajenim redoslijedom i krenuo protiv neprijatelja.

Tako je treća snaga konjanika ušla u bitku na brdu, da bi se pridružila Atiliusovoj konjici i galskoj konjici koju podržava galska pješadija. Daleko od brda, čini se da je Emilije zapravo bio bliže glavnini galske vojske nego Atiliusovoj glavnoj sili, koja je morala biti dalje ispred. Polibije nam predstavlja detaljan prikaz galske sile:

Kelti su se okupili okrenuti prema stražnjoj strani, od koje su očekivali napad Aemilija, Gaesate iz Alpa, a iza njih Insubre, i okrenute u suprotnom smjeru, spremni dočekati napad Caiusovih [Atiliusovih] legija, postavio Taurisci i Boii sa desne obale Po. Svoje vagone i kola postavili su na kraj oba krila i sakupili plijen na jednom od susjednih brda sa zaštitnom silom oko njega. Ovaj poredak keltskih snaga, suočen s obje strane, ne samo da je predstavljao zastrašujući izgled, već je bio dobro prilagođen potrebama situacije. Insubres i Boii nosili su hlače i svijetle ogrtače, ali Gaesatae su odbacili ovu odjeću zbog svog ponosnog povjerenja u sebe, te su stajali goli, bez ičega osim ruku, pred cijelom vojskom, misleći da će tako biti više efikasni, jer su neki dijelovi zemlje obrasli braonima koji bi im se uhvatili za odjeću i ometali upotrebu njihovog oružja.

Uprkos tome što su Gali bili uhvaćeni između dvije rimske vojske, nedostatak rimske koordinacije i okršaj na brdu omogućio im je vrijeme da naprave odgovarajuću dispoziciju kako bi se s povjerenjem suočili s obje rimske vojske. Sučelice sjeveru i Atiliusovoj vojsci bili su Boii i Taurisci, a na jugu i prema Aemilijevoj vojsci bili su Gaesatae i Insubres.

Kao i ranije, početna faza bitke bila je između konjice sve tri vojske i fokusirala se na osvajanje brda, iako ne znamo broj uključenih:

U početku je bitka bila ograničena na brdo, sve vojske su gledale u nju, tako veliki bio je broj konjica iz svakog domaćina koji se tu borio. U ovoj akciji, konzul Kaius [Atilius] pao je u mélée borbi s očajničkom hrabrošću, i njegova je glava odnesena keltskim kraljevima, ali je rimska konjica, nakon tvrdoglave borbe, na kraju savladala neprijatelja i zauzela brdo.

Tako su Rimljani u ovoj početnoj fazi izašli kao pobjednici, ali su izgubili konzula Atiliusa. Teško je znati šta učiniti s Atiliusovom taktikom. Čini se da je napravio odlučujući potez ponudio bitku kod Telamona i dobro odabrao svoje tlo, ali moramo dovesti u pitanje njegovu odluku da sa konjicom na brdu zauzme prvo mjesto. Prema informacijama koje imamo, čini se da je udario predaleko od svoje glavne vojske i napravio se primamljivom metom koja je sjela na vrh tog brda. U početku su ga Gali mogli napasti na snazi, zarobivši zarobljenike, i tako saznati o prirodi sile koja ih čeka, izbjegavajući svaki pokušaj zasjede.

Nadalje, čini se da je njegova sila bila nadjačana na tom brdu, što je dovelo do njegove smrti u bitci. Na kraju, čini se da ga je njegova odluka da se ne poveže s vojskom svog konzularnog kolege koštala barem života, ali ne i bitke koja je rezultat izbjegao samo Aemiliusov blagovremeni dolazak, a ne bilo kakva koordinacija između njih dvojice .

Nakon što je bitka konjanika završena i Rimljani pobijedili na brdu, glavne vojske krenule su u borbu. Uprkos gubitku konzula Atiliusa Regula, čini se da su rimske vojske uspjele koordinirati svoje akcije, vjerovatno zahvaljujući konjici dviju rimskih vojski koje su se ukrštale na brdu. Nemamo vremenski okvir za protek između bitke konjanika i napredovanja glavnih armija. Međutim, Gali su se sada našli napadnuti na dva fronta:

The infantry were now close upon each other, and the spectacle was a strange and marvellous one, not only to those actually present at the battle, but to all who could afterwards picture it to themselves from the reports. For in the first place, as the battle was between three armies, it is evident that the appearance and the movements of the forces marshalled against each other must have been in the highest degree strange and unusual. Again, it must have been to all present, and still is to us, a matter of doubt whether the Celts, with the enemy advancing on them from both sides, were more dangerously situated, or, on the contrary, more effectively, since at one and the same time they were fighting against both their enemies and were protecting themselves in the rear from both, while, above all, they were absolutely cut off from retreat or any prospect of escape in the case of defeat, this being the peculiarity of this two-faced formation. The Romans, however, were on the one hand encouraged by having caught the enemy between their two armies, but on the other they were terrified by the fine order of the Celtic host and the dreadful din, for there were innumerable horn-blowers and trumpeters, and, as the whole army were shouting their war-cries at the same time, there was such a tumult of sound that it seemed that not only the trumpets and the soldiers but all the country round had got a voice and caught up the cry. Very terrifying too were the appearance and the gestures of the naked warriors in front, all in the prime of life, and finely built men, and all in the leading companies richly adorned with gold torques and armlets. The sight of them indeed dismayed the Romans, but at the same time the prospect of winning such spoils made them twice as keen for the fight.

As was custom, the Romans opened with a volley of pila, which seemed to have a particularly devastating effect on the Gaesatae facing Aemilius’ army:

But when the javelineers advanced, as is their usage, from the ranks of the Roman legions and began to hurl their javelins in well-aimed volleys, the Celts in the rear ranks indeed were well protected by their trousers and cloaks, but it fell out far otherwise than they had expected with the naked men in front, and they found themselves in a very difficult and helpless predicament. For the Gallic shield does not cover the whole body so that their nakedness was a disadvantage, and the bigger they were the better chance had the missiles of going home. At length, unable to drive off the javelineers owing to the distance and the hail of javelins, and reduced to the utmost distress and perplexity, some of them, in their impotent rage, rushed wildly on the enemy and sacrificed their lives, while others, retreating step by step on the ranks of their comrades, threw them into disorder by their display of faint-heartedness. Thus was the spirit of the Gaesatae broken down by the javelineers.

With the volleys of pila exhausted, the two sides met head on:

…but the main body of the Insubres, Boii, and Taurisci, once the javelineers had withdrawn into the ranks and the Roman maniples attacked them, met the enemy and kept up a stubborn hand-to hand combat. For, though being almost cut to pieces, they held their ground, equal to their foes in courage, and inferior only, as a force and individually, in their arms. The Roman shields, it should be added, were far more serviceable for defence and their swords for attack, the Gallic sword being only good for a cut and not for a thrust.

It seems, however, that the two sides were evenly matched until the decisive move was made by the Roman cavalry on top of the hill, attacking the Gallic force from the flanks:

But finally, attacked from higher ground and on their flank by the Roman cavalry, which rode down the hill and charged them vigorously, the Celtic infantry were cut to pieces where they stood, their cavalry taking to flight.

Thus it seems that both Consuls had a hand in the tactics that led to the Roman victory Atilius for recognizing the importance of taking control of the hill top which would give the Romans access to the Gallic flank, and Aemilius for having the presence of mind to send reinforcements to the hill top when it seemed that Atilius had overreached himself and placed his position in jeopardy. In the end, despite the disjointed start to the battle, the Roman emerged totally victorious, with the defeated Gauls trapped between three Roman forces and annihilated. Polybius, supported by other sources, places the total Gallic dead at 40,000, with 10,000 taken prisoner the most comprehensive Roman victory over the Gauls in Roman history to date. Given that our sources stated that the Gallic forces were 70,000 strong (50,000 infantry and 20,000 cavalry, see above), this must mean that some 20,000 Gauls escaped. Of the Gaesatae chieftains, Concolitanus was taken prisoner and Aneroëstus fled, but committed suicide rather than be taken prisoner.

The Battle of Telamon (225 BC) – Non-Polybian Versions

Although Polybius preserves by far the best account, written less than 100 years later and based on first-hand accounts, a number of other sources provide shorter versions of the campaign, some of which add some interesting details or variations. Both Diodorus and Orosius offer short accounts of the campaign and the Battle of Telamon both are remarkably similar:

The Celts and Gauls, having assembled a force of 200,000 men, joined battle with the Romans and in the first combat were victorious. In a second attack they were again victorious, and even killed one of the Roman Consuls. The Romans, who for their part had seven hundred thousand infantry and seventy thousand cavalry, after suffering these two defeats, won a decisive victory in the third engagement. They slew forty thousand men and took the rest captive, with the result that the chief prince of the enemy slashed his own throat and the prince next in rank to him was taken alive.

Battle was joined near Arretium [modern Arezzo]. The Consul Atilius was killed and his 800,000 Romans, after part of their number were cut down fled, even though the slaughter on their side ought not to have panicked them, for historians record that only 3,000 of them were killed.

After this a second battle was fought against the Gauls in which at least 40,000 of them were slaughtered.

Both sources seem to make the same mistake on the Roman numbers, interpreting Polybius’ figures for total available manpower as the number of soldiers Rome had in the field, and Orosius seems to believe that all eight hundred thousand Roman soldiers fled the field. Diodorus interestingly has three battles in his campaign two Roman defeats and a victory. However he states that a Consul (Atilius) was killed in the second battle, which indicates that both sources, or their source, separated the Battle of Telamon into two separate battles the cavalry action on the hill and the infantry clash, the former of which he believes to have been a Roman defeat. Similarly Orosius has separated the battle into two, with Atilius being killed in a defeat, followed by a victory.

It is interesting to see how the narrative of this battle has evolved over time, with Atilius’ action evolving into a Roman defeat, which was then avenged at Telamon, rather than being seen as two parts of the same battle. Ancient historians seemed to have judged Atilius poorly, mostly for being killed in battle, which then discredited his actions on the hill. As it was, it was his tactical move to secure the hill for the Roman cavalry which proved to be the turning point of the battle, securing Roman victory, though he needed Aemilius’ force to secure control of the hill, having seemingly overstretched his own position. Despite his short and garbled account, Orosius is the only one to provide us with a figure for the Roman dead three thousand as opposed to the forty thousand killed on the Gallic side.

The theme of Atilius’ role being downgraded as time passed can be seen in the account preserved by Eutropius, who erases him altogether:

When Lucius Aemilius was Consul, a vast force of the Gauls crossed the Alps but all Italy united in favour of the Romans and it is recorded by Fabius the historian, who was present in that war, that there were eight hundred thousand men ready for the contest. Affairs, however, were brought to a successful termination by the Consul alone forty thousand of the enemy were killed, and a triumph decreed to Aemilius.

Here Eutropius goes out of his way to state that it was Aemilius alone who was responsible for the Roman victory. Florus too has a short account of the war, which although severely lacking in detail, states that it was Aemilius who defeated the Gauls.¹⁷ The only exception to this trend is Pliny, who does not provide detail of the campaign, but does comment on Aemilius and Atilius raising nearly 800,000 men (again a misreading of Polybius, who stated that that number were available, not mobilized. Plutarch comments on the early years of the war without even mentioning either Consul of 225 BC:

The first conflicts of this war brought great victories and also great disasters to the Romans, and led to no sure and final conclusion.

The figure of 40,000 Gallic dead is a common one throughout all accounts of the battle. Even Jerome preserves the figure in an entry. Dio has a fragment on the Gallic character, which may reveal some small additional detail about the battle:

The Gauls became dejected on seeing that the Romans had already seized the most favourable positions.

Zonaras, however, preserves an interesting variation on the campaign, no doubt mirroring the original account of Dio:

The barbarians plundered some towns, but at last a great storm occurred in the night, and they suspected that Heaven was against them. Consequently they lost heart, and falling into a panic, attempted to find safety in flight. Regulus pursued them and brought on an engagement with the rear-guard in which he was defeated and lost his life. Aemilius occupied a hill and remained quiet. The Gauls in turn occupied another hill, and for several days both sides were inactive then the Romans, through anger at what had taken place, and the barbarians, from arrogance born of their victory, charged down from the heights and came to blows. For a long time the battle was evenly fought, but finally the Romans surrounded the others with their cavalry, cut them down, seized their camp, and recovered the spoils.

Here we have some significant differences. The first notable one concerns the early Gallic campaigns, which ignores the Roman defeat at Faesulae and has the Gauls turning back due to divine omens. Next we have the role of Regulus, who again is relegated to a supporting role, killed fighting the Gallic rearguard, which is interesting as he actually lay in the path of the Gauls and was attacked by an advance contingent of Gallic cavalry, whilst it was Aemilius who was to their rear. Dio again separates the two engagements, this time inserting a number of days between the clashes. During the final battle, again unnamed, both sides occupied opposing hills and then charged at each other, though again the battle is won by the Roman cavalry.

This is a fascinating example of the divergences we see in the ancient sources. If we did not have the account of Polybius, then it would be Zonaras who provided the most detail. We would conclude that there were indeed two final battles to the campaign, separated by a period of time, with Atilius and Aemilius not joining up their forces and Atilius dying in battle first. Given this disparity, it does beg the question how many other accounts of Roman battles and campaigns we have which are similarly skewed towards one version without us even being aware of it.


WI: Celts win the Battle of Telamon, and sack Rome?

Can it be possible that the same is true here for the sack of Rome? As I see it there are a few different things to consider: Nešto happened between a band of mostly Gallic soldiers and the Romans around that time that halted or slowed Roman ascendancy for a time, i that left an indelible mark on the Roman psyche, so that the Romans always had a sense of fear and anger towards Gauls. There are no contemporary accounts of it because there are almost no contemporary accounts of bilo koji of Roman history at this time. Later Roman annalists, writers, politicians, etc. played it up and possibly exaggerated it, and mixed in a lot of "lessons," cliches and fabrications into the common story over time. And that there is little to no archaeological evidence that it actually happened.

Finally, we have the common modern suggestion that this was actually a band of mercenaries passing through and plundering, rather than a migratory tribe. Assuming that's the case, it seems to me here that the safest conjecture is that there was a sack of some sort, focused on plundering rather than destroying. This is something that would particularly make sense if this was a band of mercenaries, who would be more interested in gold and other valuables than destruction. It would also play into the common story told between Brennus's Gauls and the weighted scales-which also suggests that those who sacked the city were primarily interested in gold. In that case, there might not be much archaeological evidence of the sack, which would fit our current dearth of such evidence.

From there you can say it's size, scale, and impact were exaggerated by subsequent generations of Romans, who also invented much of the details. This seems like a far more reasonable explanation than calling into question whether Rome was actually sacked at all. If this is the point you were trying to make, I apologize for the long winded tangent, but it wasn't entirely clear. Though I will say, when a lot of people mention "sack" on here, I assume it includes samo a plundering, and they're not always referring specifically to great physical destruction (as, as you mentioned, was also the case in the Gothic sack of Rome).

Sertorius126

Can it be possible that the same is true here for the sack of Rome? As I see it there are a few different things to consider: Nešto happened between a band of mostly Gallic soldiers and the Romans around that time that halted or slowed Roman ascendancy for a time, i that left an indelible mark on the Roman psyche, so that the Romans always had a sense of fear and anger towards Gauls. There are no contemporary accounts of it because there are almost no contemporary accounts of bilo koji of Roman history at this time. Later Roman annalists, writers, politicians, etc. played it up and possibly exaggerated it, and mixed in a lot of "lessons," cliches and fabrications into the common story over time. And that there is little to no archaeological evidence that it actually happened.

Finally, we have the common modern suggestion that this was actually a band of mercenaries passing through and plundering, rather than a migratory tribe. Assuming that's the case, it seems to me here that the safest conjecture is that there was a sack of some sort, focused on plundering rather than destroying. This is something that would particularly make sense if this was a band of mercenaries, who would be more interested in gold and other valuables than destruction. It would also play into the common story told between Brennus's Gauls and the weighted scales-which also suggests that those who sacked the city were primarily interested in gold. In that case, there might not be much archaeological evidence of the sack, which would fit our current dearth of such evidence.

From there you can say it's size, scale, and impact were exaggerated by subsequent generations of Romans, who also invented much of the details. This seems like a far more reasonable explanation than calling into question whether Rome was actually sacked at all. If this is the point you were trying to make, I apologize for the long winded tangent, but it wasn't entirely clear. Though I will say, when a lot of people mention "sack" on here, I assume it includes samo a plundering, and they're not always referring specifically to great physical destruction (as, as you mentioned, was also the case in the Gothic sack of Rome).


In History [ edit | uredi izvor]

After the end of the First Punic War, the Romans had every right to feel pleased with their results. There had been unrest in northern Italy, but the mere appearance of an army had quashed any opposition. However, in 225 BC an alliance of Gallic tribes and mercenaries from Transalpine Gaul moved into Etruria through an unguarded pass in the Apenines. To meet this invasion, the Romans have called on the resources and manpower of all middle and southern Italy, who rapidly mobilised defensive forces. As a result, they succeeded in outmaneouvring the Gauls, and forced the invaders towards the coast of Tuscany, while another army made an unopposed landing at Pisae and prevented them from a line of retreat. The Gauls were surrounded, trapped.

The second Roman army that landed at Pisae

After Telamon the Romans decided that enough was enough. Northern Italy would have to be secured and the Gauls defeated, a task that would eventually double the area under Rome's direct control. By 220 BC nearly all the Gallic tribes had submitted and Carthage was severely weakened by the loss of one of its main sources of mercenaries. The peace won would not be long standing.


Talk:Battle of Telamon

Parts of this article are taken from the description of the battle in the game Rome: Total War. Is this copyright infringement?

This is the description from the game: "After the end of the 1st Punic War, the Romans had every right to feel pleased with their results. There had been unrest in northern Italy, but the mere appearance of an army had quashed any opposition. However, in 225BC an alliance of Gallic tribes and mercenaries from Transalpine Gaul moved into Etruria through an unguarded pass in the Apennines. To meet this invasion, the Romans called on the resources and manpower of all of middle and southern Italy, who rapidly mobilised defensive forces. As a result, they succeeded in outmanoeuvring the Gauls, and forced the invaders towards the coast of Tuscany, while another army made an unopposed landing at Pisae and prevented them from a line of retreat. The Gauls were surrounded, trapped.

After Telamon the Romans decided that enough was enough. Northern Italy would have to be secured and the Gauls defeated, a task that would virtually double the area under Rome's direct control. By 220BC nearly all the Gallic tribes had submitted and Carthage was severely weakened by the loss of one of its main sources of mercenaries. The peace won would not be long lasting."


The Battle of Telamon, 225 BC (part 1)

This entry was posted on March 2, 2013 by Paul McDonnell-Staff .

“It is this with which we are now concerned, a plain surpassing in fertility any other in Europe with which we are acquainted.” [The Po Valley] Polybius 2.14.7

Around 500 BC, the peoples of an Iron-Age culture nowadays referred to as “La Tène” arose from the earlier “Hallstatt”-culture and began spreading from their original homeland in central Europe. They were the most advanced metal workers of the time, and also aggressive, with a strong warrior ethos. To the Mediterranean peoples with whom they traded and interacted, they were called Keltoi in Greek, and Galli ili Celtae na latinskom. They were basically rural peoples, large towns called oppida only arising through the fourth century BC. They quickly spread over the next hundred years or so and overpowered neighbouring peoples in southern Germany, France, northern Spain and southern Britain. They also crossed the Alps into Italy, in ever growing numbers.

In 396 BC, the Insubres tribe captured Melpum (modern Milan). In about 350 BC they finally captured the leading Etruscan cities in the Po valley, Padana and Misa, ending Etruscan rule there. The sophisticated irrigation and drainage systems the Etruscans built were not maintained, and simpler Celtic agricultural practises took over. The Cenomani tribe settled around Verona. The Boii established themselves further down the Po valley and founded Bononia (modern Bologna). The Senones pushed on furthest, all the way to the Adriatic (see the map for tribal areas in the Po valley). Other, smaller tribes, such as the Taurini and Lingones also established themselves in the fertile valley.

Conflict between Rome and the Celts

In 387 BC, the first clash between Rome and the Celts took place, when the Senones and perhaps others were attacking the Etruscan city of Clusium, which asked Rome for help. The Gauls took umbrage at the killing of some of their ambassadors at Roman hands, and marched south from Clusium into the Tiber valley. The Roman army clashed with the newcomers and were beaten at the battle of the river Allia, fleeing to Veii. The defenceless Rome was largely abandoned and fell to the Senones, and according to Polybius, was occupied by them for seven months. They eventually returned home to defend it from the Veneti, with Rome paying a ransom.

Rome never forgot this terrifying and humiliating conquest, and immediately built the so-called Servian wall around Rome, which was put to the test around 357 BC, when once more the Gauls appeared outside the gates of Rome, this time to be defeated by the Roman Army before the gates. The Po valley was now firmly “Cisalpine Gaul” (“Gaul on This Side of the Alps”), but as Rome steadily expanded in central and southern Italy, the alarmed Etruscans, Samnites and Gauls, plus Sabines and Umbrians, formed a coalition against Rome. An eight-year war saw Rome prevail. Rome now sought to secure the Tiber valley and attacked the Senones in 285 BC, completing their conquest and driving them out by 282 BC. Their former territory became Roman “Public Land”, the Ager Gallicus (see the map).

The Telamonian campaign

In 236 BC, the Boii threatened the colony at Ariminum, inviting allies from Transalpine Gaul to assist and threatening a peace that had lasted 45 years. The threat petered out when the Gallic allies fell out and fought among themselves. The terrible punishments meted out by the Romans 45 years earlier were now forgotten among fresh generations of Gauls. In 232 BC, Gaius Flaminius, a plebeian tribune, by-passed the Senate and divided the Ager Gallicus into small lots for Roman citizens, much to the displeasure of the Allies, for the public land really belonged to the Federation, and of the Roman senatorial magnates who were used to leasing large chunks of it. The Gauls, too, noticed this evidence of permanent loss, and feared further encroachment, but bided their time, working on alliances and once again negotiating with Transalpine brethren.

Eventually a league was formed of most of the Cisalpine tribes: the Insubres, the Boii, the Lingones, and the Taurini (called Taurisci by Polybius). Envoys were sent across the Alps to obtain allies, regaled with tales of the ease with which the Senones had taken Rome, and the vast amounts of booty obtained. Large bands of warriors, in warrior societies called “Gaesatae” (literally, “spearmen” loosely, “mercenaries”) enthusiastically accepted. The Gallic army would be larger than anything seen previously.

Meanwhile, the Romans had not been idle, nor were they unaware of the Gallic build-up, which took several years to prepare and organize. They were thoroughly alarmed, gathered corn and other supplies, enrolled Legions and even marched to the frontiers on rumours of imminent invasion.

The defence of Italy

As the Gallic threat to Italy grew, the Romans had been busy. Early on, they took a census of their manpower both iuniores i seniores (men eligible for the field army, and the older home guard respectively), and of the iuniores of their allies. The totals were recorded by the contemporary Fabius Pictor and have come to us via Polybius (2.24.4). They are a little complicated, because Polybius first gives actual figures for the armies deployed, then gives potential manpower figures for Allies and Romans, and there may be some overlap, because for example Sabines and Campani were technically “Romans”, but cives sine suffragio (“citizens without the vote”) and served separately at this time, rather than in the legions (that is, as socii or allies). After adjusting the figures to allow for this, their potential force was about 220,000 iuniores, and 285,000 socii, horse and foot. Of these, two “double” consular armies, each consisting of four legions of 5,200 foot and 300 horse, plus 30,000 socii foot and 2,000 cavalry took the field. In reserve at Rome was a further “double” army of four legions of five thousand or so foot and a total of 1,500 horse, plus socii of 30,000 foot and 2,000 horse.

In addition to fully mobilizing their manpower, the Romans had been stockpiling corn for several years to feed these massive armies, and made huge numbers of missiles and other war material, more than had ever been collected before. As well as their alliance with their former Etruscan enemies, the Romans had further diplomatic success in obtaining the alliance of the Veneti and Gallic Cenomani, thus decreasing the potential of the invaders by one of the largest Gallic tribes. Their combined force amounted to 20,000 men. In addition, alliance with the Umbrian and Sarsinatae peoples of the Apennine mountains mobilized another 20,000 men to the south to threaten the border of Cisalpine Gaul. The Gallic League had to leave a comparable force behind to guard these threats.

In all, Rome had deployed no less than three armies of around 50,800 foot plus 3,200 cavalry against the Gauls, plus an army of – probably – 45,000 Etruscans and 5,000 Sabines with 4,000 cavalry, and 40,000 Northern Italian allies with an unknown number of cavalry. (In addition they continued to garrison Sicily with two legions totalling 9,000 men, likely a Campanian contingent.) This is a total of over 253,000 men mobilized against the Gallic League, whose available invading forces had shrunk to 50,000 or so infantry because of the need to defend Cisalpine Gaul. Polybius gives the Gallic invaders some 20,000 cavalry and chariots, but this is an impossibly large number, and the true number is more likely to be around five thousand cavalry and less than a thousand chariots.

Roman strategy

Essentially, the Romans faced a double threat, for the Gauls could approach one of two ways. They might first move down the Po valley and recover the Ager Gallicus, before crossing the Appenines by the route that would later become the Via Flaminia and marching down the Tiber valley to attack Rome. This seemed the likeliest Gallic plan to them, considering the earlier threats to Ariminum. The other alternative was that they would cross the Apennines by one of a number of routes and descend though Etruria by the ancient road that would later become the Roman Via Cassia. This route passed through Arretium and Clusium, then into the Tiber valley, and had been the route used when the Gauls sacked Rome in 387 BC.

To guard against these two threats, the Romans sent one army, 54,000 strong, under Consul L. Aemilius Papus across the Apennines, and then north to take up position at Ariminum, in the middle of the Ager Gallicus. This army would defend the area, and also blocked any approach to Rome down the length of the Tiber valley. The defence of Etruria was left to the Etruscans, bolstered (probably) by a legion of Sabines, also numbering some 54,000 in all, commanded by an un-named Roman praetor, but they had to initially split this force to cover a number of passes leading into Etruria. The defence of Italy was completed by a reserve army 53,500 strong based at Rome. This was a sound plan, for forward defence guarded both possible routes, with a reserve in case either forward defensive army was defeated.

Curiously, the other consul, G. Atilius Regulus was sent to Sardinia with a fleet. Now Sardinia had been thoroughly subdued several times in the 230s BC by a single consular army, and between deaths and deportation as slaves, there will have been hardly a man of military age left there, so to send a “double” consular army seems strange when all Italy was in peril, the more so as Polybius does not mention any trouble there. This argues strongly that the Romans had an offensive plan also, and intended to invade Cisalpine Gaul behind the Gallic army, while their Northern allies attacked from the East. The size of these four Roman forces can hardly be an accident, for each was big enough to take on the Gallic host alone, and argues well for Roman intelligence regarding the size of the invading Gallic army. On the other hand, the Gauls knew that Rome was bigger than she had been in the days when they had sacked it, but evidently had only a vague idea of just how big, nor did they seem to appreciate that all of Italy was being mobilized against them.

This is the end of Part 1. Continue reading in part 2.

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The Battle of Telamon, 225 BC (part 2)

This entry was posted on March 17, 2013 by Paul McDonnell-Staff .

“You are not facing a Latin or a Sabine foe who will become your ally when you have beaten him: we have drawn our swords against wild beasts, whose blood we must shed or spill our own.” Attributed to Consul M. Popilius Laenas, fighting the Gauls, 350 BC (Livy 7.24).

In the spring of 225 BC, news of the crossing of the Alps by perhaps 10,000 or more Gaesatae reached Rome and confirmed that matters were coming to a head. The Romans deployed their forces as set out in part 1, and the Gallic host swelled as it moved down the Po valley. The Gauls then pulled a strategic surprise by suddenly turning south and crossing the Apennines, no doubt brushing aside whatever Etruscan force was guarding the particular pass used. This probably brought them into Etruria somewhere near modern Florence, where they crossed the Arnus river and found themselves in Etruria proper, with no foe to face.

They slowly moved south, scattering across the countryside, rounding up people and animals as booty and loading captured carts and ox-wagons with moveable plunder. Meanwhile, the Praetor re-united his scattered Etrusco-Sabine army and set off in pursuit. Some four days later, he caught them up near Clusium, just 85 miles (136km) north of Rome. On learning this, the Gallic host turned back north, eager for glory in battle. The two armies closed, and at sunset were no great distance apart. It being late in the day, both armies camped and lit their fires.

The Gallic ruse

The Gauls resolved on a cunning ruse. They departed silently in the night, leaving their fires lit and their cavalry behind. The cavalry were instructed to wait until daybreak, and then, when visible to the enemy, to lead them south. Meanwhile, the rest of the army took up position in the woods and scrub-covered hills overlooking the valley to the east, and settled into a linear ambush near a town called Faesulae.

At daybreak, the Romans seeing what they saw as a cavalry rearguard, hastened to strike camp and pursue, following the trail left by thousands of horses. As they passed by the ambush, their column was assailed in the flank by the Gauls rushing down from the hills. A stubborn struggle ensued, but the Gauls had all the advantages, and the Etrusco-Sabines broke and fled to a hill in the valley, where they rallied. Some 6,000 had been killed, including wounded too incapacitated to escape. The Gauls surrounded the hill, intending to besiege them if they failed to surrender.

The Roman pursuit

Meanwhile, Consul Lucius Aemilius Papus left Ariminum as soon as he learnt of the Gauls crossing the Apennines, heading south, and then west across the mountains on the route that would later become the Via Flaminia. His seven-day-or-so march brought him to the battlefield just too late to take part. Both Gauls and Etrusco-Sabines knew what his camp fires meant, and the latter sent messengers over the wooded heights.

About now the Gauls finally realised what they were up against – a new army on their heels – and must have reckoned on another army defending Rome. They held a council, at which the war-chief Aneroestes declared that, having captured so much booty, they should not risk fighting again, but should get their booty home safe, and return to fight the Romans another day. No doubt the thought of looting eastern Etruria as well played an unspoken part. After a debate, this course was adopted and once again the Gauls broke camp before daybreak. With wooded heights impassable to wagons to west and east, they were forced to continue south for a day or so, slowed to the pace of the ox-wagons containing their booty, and the speed they could drive herds at.

Aemilius bided his time, cautiously nibbling at the heels of the Gallic host, and doubtless hoping to trap them between himself and the army ahead of them at Rome. When the terrain opened out just north of Lake Volsiniensis, they suddenly turned west and headed for the coast, which they reached in about three or four days, and then turned north up the Via Aurelia. Meanwhile in accordance with the strategic plan, Consul Gaius Atilius Regulus had embarked his army and landed at Pisa, a voyage of around of three to four days with the prevailing westerly/south-westerly Libeccio winds, depending on stops for water, and so on.

A change of plan

As soon as the Gauls turned west toward the coast, messengers sped up the Via Aurelia to Pisa to advise the Consul Atilius, plans changed, and he now immediately marched south. The messengers likely told the Consul of an ideal place to fight the Gauls, if he did not know it already, namely a large defile, just north of Telamon. The Romans also knew exactly where the Gallic host were, and their speed, no more than twelve to fifteen miles per day. Calculations will have shown there was just time to get there and “bottle up” the Gauls. He probably force-marched, and could have covered the 90 miles or so in three days.

Just as the Gauls camped overnight to the south of the defile, the Romans camped perhaps some ten miles to the north of the defile. Hurrying on at first light, the Romans captured some Gallic scouts and learned just how near the Gallic host was – already entering the defile, which surprised Atilius, and that his fellow consul was on their heels. He ordered the tribunes to form the army in line of battle, and advance as rapidly as possible. It was going to be a close-run thing. He himself led his 3,200 cavalry on ahead, for he could see directly ahead of him a hill which dominated the road, which dog-legged around it (see the battle map).

Atilius seized the crest, and the Gauls, still ignorant that any Roman army could possibly lie between them and home, assumed that Aemilius’ cavalry had somehow got around their flank on the other side of the hills and got ahead of them. They sent their own cavalry ahead, probably around five thousand strong, together with light troops, to drive them off and open the way. Captured prisoners revealed the presence of Atilius and his army, which could soon be seen. The Gauls at last realised they were trapped between the wooded and scrub covered hills to East and West. They did the only thing they could, and formed up back-to-back, the Insubres and Gaesatae facing the rear, and the Boii, Taurini and lesser tribes facing the Romans to the north. In order to stretch their line, they placed wagons and their chariots on their flanks. The booty – slaves, herds and laden ox-wagons – was placed under guard on a low hill that skirted the road. The Gaesatae, out of bravado, stood naked along their front line.

The Battle of Telamon

Aemilius had known that his colleague had landed at Pisa, but only now realised he had arrived, when he saw the struggle for the hill. He knew the Gauls had more cavalry than his colleague, and hastened to send his own 3,200 cavalry along the foothills to join the massive cavalry battle and strike the Gallic rear. Atilius in the meantime fought freciously to hold the hill. He fell in the melee, fighting with desperate courage, and his head was triumphantly brought to the Gallic chiefs.

All eyes were on the pell-mell battle for the hill. The infantry forces of the three armies now closed on one another, and it was a matter of some doubt as to who was in the better position, the Gauls back-to-back and thus protected from being attacked in the rear, or the Romans who had their foes trapped. The good order of the Gauls, and the wall of sound coming from their ranks from innumerable trumpets and horns and war-cries terrified the Romans as they advanced, not to mention the cavorting Gaesatae, shrieking and shaking their weapons prominently in the front ranks of the 1.5 mile (2.5km) long front line.

The velites in Aemilius’ army, almost 15,000 light infantry, ran out and started hurling streams of javelins into the ranks of the Gaesatae. Being naked, and with heads and limbs exposed outside their shields they soon began to suffer against an enemy they could not harm, their own light troops being absent with the cavalry in the battle for the hill. In rage and impotence, some groups broke ranks and charged forward suicidally, while most shrank back into the Insubres. Once out of javelins, the velites of both Roman armies withdrew through the ranks and the grim confrontation of heavy infantry began with both sides hurling pila i gaesa (heavy throwing spears), and eventually closing hand-to-hand.

Meanwhile, the battle on the hill had been resolved in favour of the now more numerous Romans, who had driven the Gallic cavalry back to the next hill (see battle map), from where they broke away northward in flight. The victorious Roman cavalry then charged down into the flanks and rear of the Gauls, and the defile became a killing field. The war-chief Concolitanus and ten thousand of the surrounded Gauls were captured. Polybius assumes the remaining forty thousand were all killed, but in reality many thousands likely slipped away up the wooded slopes to either side.

The other war-chief Aneroestes escaped with his household warriors, but from shame they committed suicide. The rescued booty was returned to the Etruscans, the collected spoil sent to Rome, and Aemilius marched north and unleashed the legions on the territory of the Boii, which they pillaged for a few days before returning to Rome, where Aemilius celebrated a triumph. The most serious Gallic invasion ever had been utterly destroyed and Rome itself saved.

Posljedice

The overwhelming victory made the Romans determined to expel the Gallic tribes from the Po valley. Next year, the two consuls would combine their normal sized armies (roughly 45,000 strong in total plus around three thousand cavalry) and invade the territory of the Boii, compelling them to submit to Rome despite setbacks due to severe rain and a consequent epidemic. Subsequently, with the aid of their ally the Cenomani, the Insubres too were subdued, despite them invoking the aid of even more Gaesatae, some thirty thousand.

By 220 BC, the Romans were masters of the Po valley and started planting colonies. Two years later, Hannibal would arrive and arouse the Gauls against Rome once more. The Taurini refused to join, and were made an example of by Hannibal. Just 8,000 infantry and 4,000 cavalry, mostly Insubres, managed to join Hannibal before the battle of the Trebia. After “liberating” the Po valley, Hannibal’s Gauls swelled to 20,000 infantry and 4,000 cavalry, but this was still but a fraction of the fighting power of Cisalpine Gaul before Telamon and its aftermath, which had broken their military power forever.

What sticks out in this campaign is the Roman ability to deploy four massive armies, each the size of the Gallic host, over hundreds of miles apart, and to co-ordinate their efforts to act in concert: no mean feat of command and control. Interestingly too, the Telamon campaign presages the Roman strategy against Hannibal, for again armies under one consul were deployed for the defence of Italy, while the other consul led an offensive force by sea to attack the enemy’s rear base, this time Spain. The Romans also tried to trap Hannibal between two armies a number of times, and their eagerness to do so led to the disaster at Lake Trasimene. The ambush there also duplicates the Gauls victorious ambush at Faesulae. Having found a successful strategic formula, the Romans evidently saw no reason to change it until forced to.

This was the second and last part of an article on the Battle of Telamon. If you haven’t already, read the first part of this feature.

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Battle of Telamon - History

Hammer of God (Part 1) (167-160 BC) three battles from the Maccabean Revolt, from C3i #2
Hammer of God (Part 2) (167-160 BC) three more battles from the Maccabean Revolt, from C3i #3

The Great Plains Proconsul P.Cornelius Scipio vs Carthaginian and Numidian allies (203BC) from C3i Magazine, Issue #4
The battle of Dertosa (215BC) from C3i Magazine, Issue #4
- counters available here (The Great Plains and Dertosa counters are on same countersheet)

Alexander in Italy, a hypothetical 2 game module in C3i #5 (Great Battle of Alexander and Pyrrhic Victory needed)
Battle of Castulo (211 BC), from C3i #5
Battle of Telamon (225 BC) the Celtic War, from C3i #6
Mago: Youngest of the Lion's Brood, Mago Barca in the 2nd Punic War, from C3i #6

Truceless War: Hamilcar Barca Puts Down a Mercenary Revolt battles of Utica 240BC, Hippacritae 240BC, Tunis 238BC and Leptis 238BC, from C3i Magazine, Issue #7
Marcus Claudius Marcellus: The Sword of Rome battles of Clastidium (222BC), Nola (214BC), Acrillae (213BC), and Numistro (210BC) from C3i Magazine, Issue #8
- counters were inserted in C3i Magazine, Issue #9 and are available here (Truceless War and The Sword of Rome counters are on same countersheet).

Caralis: The Battle for Sardinia (215BC) from C3i Magazine, Issue #9
EQUUS: Cavalry Battles of the Second Punic War battles of Ticinus River (218BC), Maharbal's Victory in Umbria (217BC), Castrum Album (214BC), Agathocles' Tower (204BC) and Cirta (203BC) from C3i Magazine, Issue #10
- counters were inserted in C3i Magazine, Issue #10 and are available here (Caralis and Equus counters are on same countersheet).

Pyrrhus in Sicily, from C3i #14

Mercenary: Land Warfare in the 1st Punic War, Battles of Agrigentum (262 BC) and Adys (256 BC) from C3i #16
The Sicilian Campaign in the 2nd Punic War, the Battle of Himeras River, from C3i #17
The Battle of the Tagus River, Hannibal's First Battle (220 BC) from C3i #18
Battle of Grumentum (207 BC) from C3i #21


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