Description. Flavius Vegetius Renatus, the 4th century AD writer on military matters, was more well known during the Middle Ages than today. His “Epitoma Rei. Epitoma rei militaris. by Vegetius Renatus, Flavius; Reeve, Michael D. Publication date Language Latin; English. Book digitized by. De re militari (Latin “Concerning Military Matters”), also Epitoma rei militaris, is a treatise by the . Xii in the Royal Library, written and ornamented for Richard III of England, is a translation of Vegetius. It ends with a paragraph starting: “Here.

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We have many instances of the favorable reception which Augustus and his illustrious successors conferred on the works presented to them; and this encouragement of the Sovereign made the sciences flourish. By an army is meant a number of troops, legions and auxiliaries, cavalry and infantry, assembled to make war. If they exceed this pace, they no longer march but run, and no certain rate can be assigned. We formerly had two legions in lllyricum, consisting of six thousand men each, which from their extraordinary dexterity and skill in the use of these weapons were discingui.

In the summer, the troops should never encamp without tents.

Translation of Epitoma rei militaris in English

For the security of an expedition depends on the concealment of all motions from the enemy. If they broke the enemy they never pursued them, least they should break their ranks or throw the line into confusion, and lest the enemy, taking advantage of their disorder, should return to the attack and destroy them without difficulty.

The trumpet sounds the charge and the retreat. Reputably, it was commissioned by the Roman Emperor as sort of a “last ditch ” attempt to jump start the Roman military back into it’s former glory and effectiveness. These ten cohorts form the complete legions, consisting in the whole of six thousand one hundred foot and seven hundred and twenty-six horses.

Whenever this happens and they are attacked in the rear, universal disorder and confusion are inevitable. Editions and translations [ edit ] The most reliable modern edition is that of Michael D.

He had charge of the arms, horses, clothing and provisions. Fleets are employed for the protection of seas and rivers.

Epitoma rei militaris

In war discipline is superior to strength; but if that discipline is neglected, there is no longer militaria difference between the soldier and the peasant. And sometimes they unavoidably will be distressed for want of water. L’ art de chevalerie in French. The fortifications and all the machines of different kinds must also be examined and repaired militarks time. As to the situation, the army should never continue in the neighborhood of unwholesome marshes any length of time, or on dry plains or eminences without some sort of shade or shelter.


And merely superior skill and conduct defeated Attilius Regulus at the head of a Roman army, till that time always victorious. It is necessary to be well acquainted whether the enemy usually make their attempts in the night, at break of day or in the hours of refreshment or rest; and by knowledge epittoma their customs to guard against what we find their general practice. I shall therefore explain the organization of the ancient legion according to the military constitution. These rules must be punctually observed in all exercises and reviews so that the soldiers may be ready to obey them in action without hesitation according to the general’s orders either to charge or halt, to pursue the enemy or to retire.

The soldiers were particularly exercised in the use of this weapon, because when thrown with force and skill it often ri the shields of the foot and the cuirasses of the horse. Nor let this alteration and loss of ancient discipline in any way affect Your Majesty, since it is a happiness reserved for You alone both to restore the ancient ordinances and establish new ones for the public welfare. The ancients considered Sertorius’ care in this point as one of the most eminent of his military qualifications.

Some soldiers, however, were allowed for the service of the praefects, tribunes and even of the other officers, our rie the number of the accensi or such as mliitaris raised after the legion was complete. Did not the Epirots acquire in former times a great reputation in militarix The utility of good archers in action is evidently demonstrated by Cato in his treatise on military discipline.

It was first published in English by Caxton, from an English manuscript copy, in For the possessions of the subjects cannot be kept secure otherwise than by the defense of arms. They should march with the common military step twenty miles in five summer-hours, and with the full step, which is quicker, twenty-four miles in the same number of hours.

Recruits were to be hardened so as to be able to march twenty miles in half a summer’s day at ordinary step and twenty-four miles at quick step. The slingers should be taught to whirl the sling but once about the head before they cast the stone. Little can be expected from forces so dissimilar in every respect, since it is one of the most essential points in military undertakings that the whole army should be put in motion and governed by one eiptoma the same order.

It is then inspected and measured by the centurions, who punish such as have been indolent or negligent. In that sense De re militari is a projection of Roman civilization into modern times and a continuation of its influence on its cultural descendants. English Choose a language for shopping. These are the maxims and instructions dispersed through the works of different authors, which Your Majesty has ordered me to abridge, since the perusal of the whole would be too tedious, and the authority of only a part unsatisfactory.


From these dimensions the interior height of the intrenchment will be found to be thirteen feet, and the breadth of the ditch twelve. The Tribunes, Centurions, and all the soldiers in general were under his orders: The truth of this is confirmed by the instance of Quintius Cincinnatus, who was following the plow when they came to offer him the dictatorship.

The military establishment consists of three parts, the cavalry, infantry and marine. They had shields, cuirasses, helmets, greaves, swords, daggers, loaded javelins, and two of the common missile weapons. This post was always conferred on an officer of great skill, experience and long service, and who consequently was capable of instructing others in those branches of the profession in which he had distinguished himself.

From these dimensions the interior height of the intrenchment will be found to be thirteen feet, and the breadth of the ditch twelve. The larger these engines are, the greater distance they carry and with the greater force. Views Read Edit View history. The third book deals with tactics and strategy and it was this portion of Vegetius that influenced war in the Middle Ages so greatly.

They gave their recruits round bucklers woven with willows, twice as heavy as those used on real service, and wooden swords double the weight of the common ones. The legion had fifty- five ballista for throwing darts and ten onagri, drawn by oxen, for throwing stones. By one of the strange mutations of history, when later the cross-bow and gun-powder deprived cavalry of its shock-power, the tactics of Vegetius again became ideal for armies, as they had been in the times from which he drew his inspiration.

For though after the example of the Goths, the Alans and the Huns, we have made some improvements in the arms of the cavalry, yet it is plain the infantry are entirely defenseless. They are not limited to the command of two legions only, but have often a greater number.

The centurion in the infantry is chosen for his size, strength and deXterity in throwing his missile weapons and for his skill in the use of his sword and shield; in short for his expertness in all the exercises.