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Encyclopedia > Limes Germanicus
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Military of ancient Rome (Portal)
800 BC - AD 476 For the military of the East Roman Empire after the Fall of the Western Roman Empire, see Byzantine military The Military of ancient Rome (known to the Romans as the militia) relates to the combined military forces of Ancient Rome from the founding of the city of Rome to the...

Structural history
Roman army (unit types and ranks,
legions, generals)
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Decorations and Punishments
Technological history
Military engineering (castra,
siege engines, arches, roads)
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Infantry tactics
Frontiers and fortifications (Limes,
Hadrian's Wall)
Map of Upper Germanic Limes
Map of Upper Germanic Limes

The Limes Germanicus (Latin for Germanic frontier) was a remarkable line of frontier (limes) forts that bounded the ancient Roman provinces of Germania Superior and Raetia, and divided the Roman Empire and the unsubdued Germanic tribes, from the years 83 to 260. At its height, the limes stretched from near Bonn on the Rhine to near Regensburg on the Danube. The branches of the Roman military at the highest level were the Roman army and the Roman navy. ... The Roman army is the set of land-based military forces employed by the Roman Kingdom, Roman republic and later Roman empire as part of the Roman military. ... This is a list of both unit types and ranks of the Roman army from the Roman Republic to the fall of the Roman Empire. ... This is a list of Roman legions. ... // Manius Acilius Glabrio -- Manius Acilius Glabrio (consul 191 BC) -- Manius Acilius Glabrio (consul 91) -- Titus Aebutius Helva -- Aegidius -- Lucius Aemilius Barbula -- Marcus Aemilius Lepidus (triumvir) -- Lucius Aemilius Paulus Macedonicus -- Marcus Aemilius Scaurus (praetor 56 BC) -- Flavius Aëtius -- Lucius Afranius (consul) -- Sextus Calpurnius Agricola -- Gnaeus Julius Agricola -- Flavius Antoninus -- Marcus... The Roman Navy (Latin: Classis) operated between the First Punic war and the end of the Western Roman Empire. ... The Roman Navy (Latin: Classis) operated between the First Punic war and the end of the Western Roman Empire. ... The history of ancient Rome - originally a city-state of Italy, and later an empire covering much of Eurasia and North Africa from the ninth century BC to the fifth century AD - was often closely entwined with its military history. ... The following is a List of Roman wars fought by the ancient Roman Kingdom, Roman Republic and Roman Empire, organized by date. ... The following is a List of Roman battles (fought by the Roman Kingdom, the Roman Republic, and the Roman Empire), organized by date. ... As with most other military forces the Roman military adopted a carrot and stick approach to military, with an extensive list of decorations for military gallantry and likewise a range of punishments for the punishment of military transgressions. ... The technology history of the Roman military covers the development of and application of technologies for use in the armies and navies of Rome from the Roman Republic to the fall of the Western Roman Empire. ... Roman military engineering is that Roman engineering carried out by the Roman Army - almost exclusively by the Roman legions for the furthering of military objectives. ... Basic ideal plan of a Roman castrum. ... Roman siege engines were, for the most part, adapted from Hellenistic siege technology. ... List of ancient Roman triumphal arches (By modern country) // France Orange Reims: Porte de Mars Saint Rémy de Provence: Roman site of Glanum Saintes: Arch of Germanicus Greece Arch of Galerius, Thessaloniki Hadrians Arch, Athens Italy It has been suggested that List of Roman arches in Rome be... A Roman road in Pompeii Road Construction on Trajans Column The Roman roads were essential for the growth of their empire, by enabling them to move armies. ... Roman military personal equipment was not of a better quality than that used by the majority of its adversaries[1]. It was however produced in large numbers to established patterns and used in an established way. ... Root directory at Military history of ancient Rome Romes military was always tightly keyed to its political system. ... The strategy of the Roman military encompasses its grand strategy (the arrangements made by the state to implement its political goals through a selection of military goals, a process of diplomacy backed by threat of military action, and a dedication to the military of part of its production and resources... Root directory at Strategy of the Roman military Roman infantry tactics refers to the theoretical and historical deployment, formation and maneuvers of the Roman infantry from the start of the Roman Republic to the fall of the Western Roman Empire. ... Map of all the territories once occupied by the Roman Empire, along with locations of limes Roman military borders and fortifications were part of a grand strategy of territorial defense in the Roman Empire. ... The limes Germanicus, 2nd century. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Image File history File links Karte_limes. ... Image File history File links Karte_limes. ... The limes Germanicus, 2nd century. ... Categories: Historical stubs | Ancient Roman provinces | German history | Germany | History of the Germanic peoples ... The Roman Empire ca. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... The term Germanic tribes (or Teutonic tribes) applies to the ancient Germanic peoples of Europe. ... Bonn is the 19th largest city in Germany, located about 20 kilometres south of Cologne on the river Rhine in the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia. ... The River Rhine (Dutch: ; French: ; German: ; Italian: ; Romansh: ) is one of the longest and most important rivers in Europe at 1,320 kilometres (820 miles), with an average discharge of more than 2,000 cubic meters per second. ... Regensburg (also Ratisbon, Latin Ratisbona) is a city (population 129,175 in 2005) in Bavaria, south-east Germany, located at the confluence of the Danube and Regen rivers, at the northernmost bend in the Danube. ... The Danube (ancient Danuvius, ancient Greek Istros) is the longest river of the European Union and Europes second-longest[3] (after the Volga). ...


The Limes Germanicus was divided into:

  • The Lower (Northern) Germanic Limes, which extended from the North Sea at Katwijk in the Netherlands along the Rhine;
  • The Upper Germanic Limes (just to be confusing, also called the Rhaetian Limes or simply "the Limes") started from the Rhine at Rheinbrohl (Neuwied (district)) across the Taunus mountains to the river Main (East of Hanau), then along the Main to Miltenberg, and from Osterburken (Neckar-Odenwald-Kreis) south to Lorch (Ostalbkreis) in a nearly perfect straight line of more than 70 km;
  • The proper Rhaetian Limes extended east from Lorch to Eining (close to Kelheim) on the Danube. The total length was 568 km (341 miles). It included at least 60 castles and 900 watchtowers.

Contents

The North Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean, located between the coasts of Norway and Denmark in the east, the coast of the British Isles in the west, and the German, Dutch, Belgian and French coasts in the south. ... Katwijk Location Flag Country Netherlands Province South Holland Population 61. ... The River Rhine (Dutch: ; French: ; German: ; Italian: ; Romansh: ) is one of the longest and most important rivers in Europe at 1,320 kilometres (820 miles), with an average discharge of more than 2,000 cubic meters per second. ... Neuwied is a district (Kreis) in the north of Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. ... For the Tpoop automobile, see Ford Taunus. ... For other uses, see Main (disambiguation). ... Hanau is a town in Hessen, Germany with 89,000 inhabitants. ... Timberframed houses in Miltenberg, Bavaria Miltenberg is a town in Franconia ( Bavaria, Germany). ... Osterburken is a town in the Neckar-Odenwald district, in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. ... Neckar-Odenwald-Kreis is a district (Kreis) in the north of Baden-Württemberg, Germany. ... Lorch may refer to: Lorch (Rheingau), a town in Hesse, Germany Lorch (Württemberg), a town in Baden-Württemberg, Germany Lorch, Austria, part of Enns in Upper Austria Category: ... The Ostalbkreis is a district (Kreis) in the east of Baden-Württemberg, Germany. ... Kelheim is a town in Bavaria, capital of the district Kelheim. ... The Danube (ancient Danuvius, ancient Greek Istros) is the longest river of the European Union and Europes second-longest[3] (after the Volga). ...

History

Reconstructed Limes near Saalburg, Germany.
Reconstructed Limes near Saalburg, Germany.

Roman border defences have become much better known through systematic excavations financed by Germany and through other research connected to them. In 2005, the remnants of the Upper Germanic & Rhaetian Limes were inscribed on the List of UNESCO World Heritage Sites as Frontiers of the Roman Empire. The Saalburg is a reconstructed fortification and museum of the Limes near Frankfurt. Image File history File links en:: Description: near Saalburg, Palisade and Moat Author: Markus Schweiß, Foto taken himself, upload to German wikipedia 17. ... Image File history File links en:: Description: near Saalburg, Palisade and Moat Author: Markus Schweiß, Foto taken himself, upload to German wikipedia 17. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... This is a list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Europe. ... UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... The Saalburg is a Roman fortification in the Taunus mountains in Germany and was a stronghold in the Upper Germanic Limes. ... For other uses, see Frankfurt (disambiguation). ...


Augustus

The first emperor who began to build fortifications along the border was Augustus, shortly after the devastating Roman defeat in the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest in 9 AD. Originally there were numerous Limes walls, which were then connected to form the Upper Germanic Limes along the Rhine and the Rhaetian Limes along the Danube. Later these two walls were linked to form a common borderline. Augustus Caesar Caesar Augustus (Latin: IMP·CAESAR·DIVI·F·AVGVSTVS)¹ (23 September 63 BC – 19 August AD 14), known earlier in his life as Gaius Octavius or Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus, was the first Roman Emperor and is traditionally considered the greatest. ... Combatants Germanic tribes (Cherusci, Marsi, Chatti, Bructeri and Chauci) Roman Empire Commanders Arminius (Hermann) Publius Quinctilius Varus † Strength Unknown 3 Roman legions, 3 alae and 6 auxiliary cohorts, probably 20,000 - 25,000 Casualties Unknown; but far less than Roman losses 15,000-20,000 The Battle of the Teutoburg...   This article is about the year 9. ...


14 to c. 73

From the death of Augustus (14 AD) until after 70 AD, Rome accepted as her German frontier the water-boundary of the Rhine and upper Danube. Beyond these rivers she held only the fertile plain of Frankfurt, opposite the Roman border fortress of Moguntiacum (Mainz), the southernmost slopes of the Black Forest and a few scattered bridge-heads. The northern section of this frontier, where the Rhine is deep and broad, remained the Roman boundary until the empire fell. The southern part was different. The upper Rhine and upper Danube are easily crossed. The frontier which they form is inconveniently long, enclosing an acute-angled wedge of foreign territory between the modern Baden and Württemberg. The Germanic populations of these lands seem in Roman times to have been scanty, and Roman subjects from the modern Alsace-Lorraine had drifted across the river eastwards. The motives alike of geographical convenience and of the advantages to be gained by recognising these movements of Roman subjects combined to urge a forward policy at Rome, and when the vigorous Vespasian had succeeded Nero, a series of advances began which gradually closed up the acute angle, or at least rendered it obtuse. Augustus (Latin: IMP•CAESAR•DIVI•F•AVGVSTVS;[1] September 23, 63 BC–August 19, AD 14), known as Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus (English Octavian; Latin: C•IVLIVS•C•F•CAESAR•OCTAVIANVS) for the period of his life prior to 27 BC, was the first and among the most important of... Nickname: The Eternal City Motto: SPQR: Senatus PopulusQue Romanus Location of the city of Rome (yellow) within the Province of Rome (red) and region of Lazio (grey) Coordinates: Region Lazio Province Province of Rome Founded 21 April 753 BC  - Mayor Walter Veltroni Area    - City 1285 km²  (580 sq mi)  - Urban... The River Rhine (Dutch: ; French: ; German: ; Italian: ; Romansh: ) is one of the longest and most important rivers in Europe at 1,320 kilometres (820 miles), with an average discharge of more than 2,000 cubic meters per second. ... The Danube (ancient Danuvius, ancient Greek Istros) is the longest river of the European Union and Europes second-longest[3] (after the Volga). ... For other uses, see Frankfurt (disambiguation). ... Mainz is a city in Germany and the capital of the German federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate. ... A map of Germany, showing the Black Forest in red. ... Baden is a historical state in the southwest of Germany, on the right bank of the Rhine. ... Arms of the Kingdom of Württemberg The title of this article contains the character ü. Where it is unavailable or not desired, the name may be represented as Wuerttemberg. ... Imperial Province of Elsaß-Lothringen Alsace-Lorraine (French: Alsace-Lorraine; German: Elsaß-Lothringen) was a territory that used to be disputed between France and Germany, but is currently a part of France and has been since World War II. The territory, composed of Alsace and parts of Lorraine, belonged to... Imperator Caesar Vespasianus Augustus (November 17, 9–June 23, 79), known originally as Titus Flavius Vespasianus and usually referred to in English as Vespasian, was emperor of Rome from 69 to 79. ... Nero[1] Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus (December 15, 37 – June 9, 68), born Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus, also called Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus, was the fifth and last Roman Emperor of the Julio-Claudian dynasty (54–68). ...


Flavian dynasty

The first advance came about 74 AD, when what is now Baden was invaded and in part annexed and a road carried from the Roman base on the upper Rhine, Strassburg, to the Danube just above Ulm. The point of the angle was broken off. Strasbourg townscape Strasbourg (German Straßburg, road to castle, Alsatian Strossburi) is the capital and principal city of the Alsace région of northeastern France. ... Ulm is a city in the German Bundesland of Baden-Württemberg, situated on the river Danube, about 90 km south-east of Stuttgart and 140 km north-west of Munich. ...


The second advance was made by Domitian about 83 AD. He pushed out from Moguntiacum, extended the Roman territory east of it and enclosed the whole within a systematically delimited and defended frontier with numerous blockhouses along it and larger forts in the rear. Among the blockhouses was one which by various enlargements and refoundations grew into the well-known Saalburg fort on the Taunus near Bad Homburg. This advance necessitated a third movement, the construction of a frontier connecting the annexations of AD 74 and AD 83 . We know the line of this frontier which ran from the Main across the upland Odenwald to the upper waters of the Neckar and was defended by a chain of forts. We do not, however, know its date, save that, if not Domitian's work, it was carried out soon after his death, and the whole frontier thus constituted was reorganised, probably by Hadrian, with a continuous wooden palisade reaching from Rhine to Danube. Domitian bust in the Louvre Titus Flavius Domitianus (24 October 51 – 18 September 96), commonly known as Domitian, was a Roman emperor of the gens Flavia. ... The Saalburg is a Roman fortification in the Taunus mountains in Germany and was a stronghold in the Upper Germanic Limes. ... For the Tpoop automobile, see Ford Taunus. ... Bad Homburg is the capital city of the Hochtaunuskreis, Hessen, Germany, on the southern slope of the Taunus, bordering among others Frankfurt and Oberursel. ... The Odenwald is a mountain chain in southern Hessen, northern Bavaria and northern Baden-Württemberg. ... The Neckar is a 367 km long river in Germany, a major right tributary of the River Rhine, which it joins at Mannheim. ... Publius Aelius Traianus Hadrianus (January 24, 76 – July 10, 138), known as Hadrian in English, was a Stoic-Epicurean[] Roman emperor from 117 – 138, and a member of the gens Aelia. ... Palisade and Moat A palisade is a Medieval wooden fence or wall of variable height, used as a defensive structure. ...


Hadrian and the Antonines

The angle between the rivers was now almost full. But there remained further advance and further fortification. Either Hadrian or, more probably, his successor Antoninus Pius pushed out from the Odenwald and the Danube, and marked out a new frontier roughly parallel to, but in advance of these two lines, though sometimes, as on the Taunus, coinciding with the older line. This is the frontier which is now visible and visited by the curious. It consists, as we see it today, of two distinct frontier works, one, known as the Pfahlgraben, is an earthen mound and ditch, best seen in the neighbourhood of the Saalburg but once extending from the Rhine southwards into southern Germany. The other, which begins where the earthwork stops, is a wall, though not a very formidable wall, of stone, the Teufelsmauer; it runs roughly east and west parallel to the Danube, which it finally joins at Heinheim near Regensburg. The Pfahlgraben is remarkable for the extraordinary directness of its southern part, which for over 50 metres runs mathematically straight and points almost absolutely true for the Polar star. It is a clear case of an ancient frontier laid out in American fashion. This frontier remained for about 100 years, and no doubt in that long period much was done to it to which precise dates are difficult to fix. It cannot even be absolutely certain when the frontier laid out by Pius was equipped with the Pfahlgraben and Teufelsmauer. But we know that the pressure of the barbarians began to be felt seriously in the later part of the 2nd century, and after long struggles the whole or almost the whole district east of the Rhine and north of the Danube was lost, seemingly all within one short period, about 250. Titus Aurelius Fulvus Boionius Arrius Antoninus Pius (September 19, 86–March 7, 161) was Roman emperor from 138 to 161. ... Regensburg (also Ratisbon, Latin Ratisbona) is a city (population 129,175 in 2005) in Bavaria, south-east Germany, located at the confluence of the Danube and Regen rivers, at the northernmost bend in the Danube. ... Polaris (α UMi / α Ursae Minoris / Alpha Ursae Minoris), more commonly known as The North Star or simply North Star, is the brightest star in the constellation Ursa Minor. ... The 2nd century is the period from 101 - 200 in accordance with the Julian calendar in the Christian Era. ...


Late Roman empire

Germanic invasions in the late 3rd century led to the abandonment of the so-called "Upper Raetian Limes" in favour of a Roman defence line along the rivers Rhine, Iller and Danube (Donau-Iller-Rhine-Limes) with watch towers in sight contact and heavily fortified castra at important trespasses (e.g. castrum Rauracense instead of the previously unwalled Augusta Raurica near to Basel) and in the hinterland of the frontier (e.g. Vindonissa in today's Switzerland). // Overview Events 212: Constitutio Antoniniana grants citizenship to all free Roman men 212-216: Baths of Caracalla 230-232: Sassanid dynasty of Persia launches a war to reconquer lost lands in the Roman east 235-284: Crisis of the Third Century shakes Roman Empire 250-538: Kofun era, the first... The Iller (ancient name Hilaria) is a river in Bavaria, Germany. ... Augusta Raurica is a large Roman archaeological site in Switzerland. ... Basel (British English traditionally: Basle and more recently Basel , German: Basel , French: Bâle , Italian: Basilea ) is Switzerlands third most populous city (166,563 inhabitants (2004); 690,000 inhabitants in the metropolitan area stretching across the immediate cantonal and national boundaries made Basel Switzerlands second-largest urban area... Vindonissa is the Roman name for Windisch in modern Switzerland. ...


Towns and cities along the limes

Germany:

Lower Germanic Limes: Germany Bad Ems is a city in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. ... Timberframed houses in Miltenberg, Bavaria Miltenberg is a town in Franconia ( Bavaria, Germany). ... Lorch may refer to: Lorch (Rheingau), a town in Hesse, Germany Lorch (Württemberg), a town in Baden-Württemberg, Germany Lorch, Austria, part of Enns in Upper Austria Category: ... Weißenburg in Bayern is a city in Bavaria, Germany. ...

The Netherlands Xanten is a town in the North Rhine-Westphalia state of Germany, located in the district of Wesel. ...

Country Netherlands Province Gelderland Area 57. ... Leyden redirects here. ... Utrecht ( (help· info)) is a municipality and the capital city of the Dutch province of Utrecht. ... Katwijk Location Flag Country Netherlands Province South Holland Population 61. ...

Notes

    References

    Primary Sources

    (none yet)


    Secondary Sources

    • This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.
    • A good English account can be found in H. F. Pelham's essay in Trans. of the Royal Hist. Soc. vol. 20, reprinted in his Collected Papers, pp. 178-211 (Oxford, 1910), where the German authorities are fully cited.

    Encyclopædia Britannica, the 11th edition The Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition (1910–1911) is perhaps the most famous edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. ... The public domain comprises the body of all creative works and other knowledge—writing, artwork, music, science, inventions, and others—in which no person or organization has any proprietary interest. ...

    External links

    • The Upper German-Raetian border wall

    See also

    Military of ancient Rome Portal
    Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
    Limes (Upper Germanic)


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