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Numidian or early Moorish

Numidian & Early Moorish

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Historical Overview Section

Numidia (202 BC – 25 BC) was an ancient Berber kingdom in North Africa that later alternated between being a Roman province and being a Roman client state.

During the first part of the Second Punic War, the eastern Massyli under their king Gaia were allied with the Later Carthaginians, while the western Massaesyli under king Syphax were allied with the Mid Republican Romans. However in 206 BC, the new king of the eastern Massyli Massinissa allied himself with Rome, and Syphax of the Massaesyli switched his allegiance to the Carthaginian side - bet that was simple to understand! At the end of the war the victorious Romans gave all of Numidia to Massinissa of the Massyli. At the time of his death in 148 BC, Massinissa's territory extended from Mauretania to the boundary of the Later Carthaginian territory, and also southeast as far as Cyrenaica, so that Numidia entirely surrounded Carthage (Appian, Punica, 106) except towards the sea.

The Mid Republican Roman army tried to subdue Numidia in the Jugurthine war at the end of the 1st century BC, and several legions were dispatched to North Africa under the command of Metellus Numidicus. The war dragged out into a long and seemingly endless campaign as the Romans tried to defeat Jugurtha decisively. Frustrated at the apparent lack of action, Metellus' lieutenant Gaius Marius returned to Rome to seek election as Consul, was elected, and then returned to Numidia to take control of the war. With the help of the king of nearby Mauretania, Jugurtha was captured which then ended the war. Jugurtha was brought to Rome in chains and was placed in the Tullianum.
Jugurtha was executed by the Romans in 104 BC, after being paraded through the streets in Gaius Marius' Triumph. Marius' success paved the way for his reorganisation of the Roman army into the Late Republican Roman model

Juba I of Numidia or Juba I (c. 85 BC-46 BC, reigned 60 BC-46 BC), was a King of Numidia who allied with the losers in the Roman Civil wars, after he had fallen out with Caesar who sent the tribune Gaius Scribonius Curio to take Africa in 50BC, who had earlier suggested that Numidia should be sold to a private equity firm rather than treated as a real kingdom. Juba massacred Curio's army, but then saw the writing on the wall for Caesar's enemy Scipio and declined to take part in the battle of Thrapsus, and then died soon after in a suicide pact with another defeated Roman general.

Claudius annexed Mauretania directly as a Roman province in 44AD, under an imperial governor.

Using the Army in FoG

  • The Numidians are a tough army to use, and requires patience with massed skirmishers, and a judicious use of your strike troops to achieve a win. Best in period, it will struggle out of book.
  • The army is huge so you can fill the table and still flank march.
  • Keep the Elephants central with TC so they can move to hit a weak spot. The elephants can provide a single heavy punch, and by using an extensive LH screen you should have time to get them in where you want to.
  • Take an IC as you can afford him and put him with Roman Foot troops and he will upgrade them into something that can manoeuvre well, is bullet-proof and which is hard to beat.
  • Whilst against limited skirmisher opposition you can swarm everywhere with Javelin armed troops, its nemesis is a better LH army that can run it off table with a bow/sword combination. Mitigate this by making sure to put your LH in 6s so you can engage in melee with other light horse (usually swordsmen) very effectively.

User-contributed links about this army:

Allied Contingents

  • Roman, Principate : Date restrictions 3 to 6 Book: Legions Triumphant Page: 6 - 4 legions, 4 auxilia, 4 cavalry as a minimum make this expensive but tough - and all 3 are useful. Make the legions as good as you can afford if you are taking them, and don’t be distracted with the other optional troops. Adding LF to legion and Auxilia BGs is probably a waste - take them separately

Tournament Performance

12 / 18 Numidian Roll Call 2008 15mm (LT)
15 / 41 Numidian or Early Moorish BHGS Challenge 2008 (open)

15mm Manufacturers supplying figures for this army

You can see some of the figures in the Ancients Photo Gallery also on this site

Image Image Image Image

Army Lists

Sample army lists for this army

Juba Numidians (47 BC) @800 pts, 17 BGs. (mikek)
IC, FC (for flank march), 2xTC

  • 4 LH LH Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @7
  • 4 LH LH Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @7
  • 4 LH LH Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @7
  • 6 LH LH Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @7
  • 6 Javelineers LF Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @4

  • 4 LH LH Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @7
  • 6 LH LH Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @7
  • 6 Javelineers LF Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @4
  • 6 Javelineers LF Unprotected Average Undrilled Javelins Light spear @4

  • 6 Slingers LF Unprotected Average Undrilled Sling @4
  • 4 Gallic and Spanish Bodyguards Cv Protected Superior Undrilled Light Spear Swordsmen @12
  • 8 Close Fighting Foot MF Protected Average Drilled - Light spear @6 (for rear support duty)
  • 2 Elephants EL - Average Undrilled @25

  • 4 Imitation Legionaries HF Protected Average Drilled - Impact Foot Swordsmen @8
  • 6 Imitation Legionaries HF Protected Average Drilled - Impact Foot Swordsmen @8
  • 2 Elephants EL - Average Undrilled @25
  • 4 Imitation Legionaries HF Protected Average Drilled - Impact Foot Swordsmen @8


A list for Bogus must drop the Cavalry and can add 6-8 Scutarii which are MF Prot Avg Undrilled Impact Foot Swordsmen.
This list is tailored to fit the Numidian figures I have but maxes Elephants and battle infantry. The FC is to enable a flank march, which would be a part of a standard pin and punch battle plan focusing on tying up and wearing down the enemy, stretching him to open gaps, and heavy troops as a threat and then a strike force. Imitation Legionaries could be in larger BGs of 8 but this list seeks nimbleness with 17 BGs. There are some good AARs for Numidians on the Slitherine web site .

Name of Army / Date

  • Using asterisks inthe edit mode creates a bulleted list in the actual site
  • This is a lot easier to do than easier than setting up tables
  • For FoG I suggest listing your army in order or march
  • with troop desctiptions on each line, for example
  • 4 HF Armoured Average Drilled Impact Foot Swordsmen
  • 8 LG Undrilled Unarmoured Poor Bowen
  • Dont forget to include your Generals !!!

Include any notes you want here, including comments on how to use - or play against - the army.

Remember to leave a line before you copy the above section as a template for your own list

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Created by admin. Last Modification: Sunday 02 of January, 2011 17:19:24 GMT by admin. (Version 25)
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