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Palintonon (ballista) heavy catapult

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Detailed diagrams of a gigantic palintonon (παλίντονον), around 334 BC (siege of Halicarnassos), probably by E.W. Marsden. The palintonon was a Hellenic heavy catapult, mostly stone-throwing, which was constructed in various scales (from just heavy to enormous). It was invented and intensively used by the Greeks in the early or mid-4th century BCE but it was soon adopted by the Carthaginians, the Romans and other ancient states. It became a ‘beloved’ weapon for the Republican and Imperial Romans: they called it ‘ballista’, but the correct initial version was ‘ballistra’ (βαλλίστρα), also a Greek term from the verb ‘βάλλω’ that is “to shoot”.

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Remains of weapons, sandals and coins shed new light on Roman conquest of Northwest Iberia

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Republication from  www.exeter.ac.uk  (University of Exeter)

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Reenactment in Spain – Image Credit : Franciscojh -Wikimedia commons

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Newly discovered remains of weapons, hobnails from sandals and coins will help experts piece together the untold story of how the Romans won control of Galicia and Northern Portugal from local tribes for the first time.

Archaeologists have found the oldest evidence yet of the presence of legions in Galicia in the Penedo dos Lobos Roman camp (Manzaneda, Ourense, Galicia). This significant discovery will help to redefine the history of the period.

Until now historians had found few clues about the actions of Roman soldiers in these regions. The findings show some, smaller groups, of legionnaires were probably sent on scouting missions in the area to investigate the landscape, rather than to fight, suggesting the region was already under Roman control by the end of 1st century BC, when the bronze coins found were made.

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The rebuilding of Cyrene by Hadrian in AD 118/9 (#Hadrian1900)

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Republication from following Hadrian

 

Cyrene – Temple of Apollo

Apollo was the patron and foremost divinity of Cyrene, and the temple dedicated to him on the terrace beneath the sacred spring was one of the most important monuments of the ancient city.
© Mohamed Kenawi, Manar al-Athar Photo-Archive, Oxford 2013–, available at http://www.manar-al-athar.ox.ac.uk (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

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In AD 115, while Trajan and the majority of the Roman troops were campaigning in Parthia in the East, the diasporic Jews rose against Rome, creating havoc in Cyrenaica, Egypt and Cyprus. The hostilities started in Cyrene and quickly spread to Alexandria, Judaism’s largest city, and resulted not only in great loss of life but also in widespread destruction. In Cyrenaica, the revolt raged all over the country and was characterized by extreme violence and bloodshed. Dio Cassius paints a horrific picture of unrelieved brutality.

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Fortress of Paule, Armorica, Gaul 50 BCE

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An aerial view of the Fortress-oppidum of Paule, of the Osismii tribe in Armorica around 50 BCE at the time of the Roman conquest of Gaul. It is located in modern Saint Symphorien and it was one of the strongest fortresses of the tribe,
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Germanic lands according to Cl. Ptolemaeus (2nd cent. CE)

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A map of the Germanic lands according to Claudius Ptolemaeus (2nd cent. CE)

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Book Review: The Decline of Medieval Hellenism in Asia Minor and the Process of Islamization from the 11th through the 15th Century by S. Vryonis, University of California Press

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The loss of Asia Minor is often seen as the most decisive factor in the fall of the Byzantine Empire. Asia Minor was the territorial core of the empire during the Middle Byzantine Era. It was a wealthy and populous country of many millions of inhabitants, the main source of resources, raw materials, human resources, employees and soldiers for the Byzantine Empire. Its loss was, indeed, a major cause for the collapse of the Empire. However, this collapse was due to higher and wider political, social, economic, military, religious, ethnological and other negative parameters which in the first place led to the fall of Byzantine Asia Minor and then to the fall of the other imperial territories and eventually of the capital itself. More

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