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Late Imperial Roman

Historical Overview Section

List 86, 307-425AD

During the period 395–476, the army of the Roman Empire's western half progressively disintegrated, while its counterpart in the East , known as the East Roman army (or early Byzantine army) remained largely intact in size and structure until the reign of Justinian I

Barbarians from outside the empire probably supplied a much larger proportion of the late army's recruits than in the army of the 1st and 2nd centuries, but there is little evidence that this adversely affected the army's performance.

Scholarly estimates of the size of the 4th-century army diverge widely, ranging from ca. 400,000 to over one million effectives (i.e. from roughly the same size as the 2nd-century army to 2 or 3 times larger). This is due to fragmentary evidence, unlike the much better-documented 2nd-century army.

Under the Tetrarchy, military commands were separated from administrative governorships for the first time. (Under the Principate, provincial governors were also commanders-in-chief of all military forces deployed in their provinces).

The main change in structure from the 2nd-century army was the establishment of large escort armies (comitatus praesentales), typically containing 20-30,000 top-grade palatini troops. These were normally based near the imperial capitals: (Constantinople in the East, Milan in the West), thus far from the Empire's borders. These armies' primary function was to deter usurpations, and they usually campaigned under the personal command of their emperors. The legions were split up into smaller units comparable in size to the auxiliary regiments of the Principate. Infantry adopted the more protective equipment of the Principate cavalry.

The role of cavalry in the late army does not appear to have been greatly enhanced as compared with the army of the Principate. The evidence is that cavalry was much the same proportion of overall army numbers as in the 2nd century and that its tactical role and prestige remained similar. However, the cavalry was endowed with greater numbers of specialised units, such as extra-heavy shock cavalry (cataphractarii and clibanarii) and mounted archers. During the later 4th century, the cavalry acquired a reputation for incompetence and cowardice for their role in three major battles. In contrast, the infantry retained its traditional reputation for excellence.

Using the army in ADLG

  • Legions are of course good - especially when elite
  • The benefit of adding rear support to the Auxilia is pretty marginal and may not be worth the points
  • This is one of the few Roman armies that does not have a compulsory fortified camp

User-contributed links about this army. Add links in this format:

as an example

Army Lists

Sample army lists for this army
200AP list
Brilliant
2 Heavy swordsmen armour impact
1 Medium artillery
2 Light infantry bow
4 Medium swordsmen impact
1 Bowmen
==
Competent
2 Heavy swordsmen armour impact
2 Medium swordsmen impact
1 Light infantry bow
1 Bowmen
1 Medium artillery
==
Competent, Included
2 Heavy cavalry Elite
1 Light cavalry bow Elite
1 Light cavalry bow ----
2 Heavy cavalry ----



200AP list from The Worlds
4 Full Fat Legions
4 LI Bow
2 LMI Bow
2 Impact Elite Auxilia
Brilliant General
====
Frankish Allied General Competent
4 Franks, MI, Impact, Elite, Impetuous
====
Included Unreliable Ordinary General HC
2 Hc IMpact
1 Cataphract
2 LH Bow

Peter Webb's Roll Call 2016 winning list
Competent CinC
4 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen armour impact
3 Auxilia Medium swordsmen impact
1 Light infantry bow
===
2inC Competent
5 Auxilia Medium swordsmen impact
1 Cataphract
1 Cataphract Elite
2 Light infantry sling
===
Armenian Ally
3 Cataphract
2 Light cavalry bow
1 Noble with commander Cataphract

Harrison's list from Roll Call 2016
Competent
2 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen impact missile support Elite
4 Auxillia Palatina Medium swordsmen impact missile support ------
===
Brilliant
2 Cataphracts Cataphract Elite
1 Equities Heavy cavalry impact ------
1 Artillary Medium artillery ------
1 Huns Light cavalry bow Elite
1 Auxillary Archers Bowmen ------
1 Equities Sagittari Light cavalry bow ----
==
Allied commander, Brilliant
2 Foederati Heavy Cavalry Heavy cavalry impact
1 Auxillary Archers Bowmen
1 Artillary Medium artillery
1 Equities Sagittari Light cavalry bow
1 Huns Light cavalry bow
1 Equities Heavy cavalry impact

Darrell's list from Roll Call 2016
Brilliant
2 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen impact missile support Elite
4 Auxillia Palatina Medium swordsmen impact missile support ------
2 Equites Sagittari Light cavalry bow ------
==
Competent
2 Cataphracts Cataphract Elite
1 Artillery Medium artillery ------
1 Huns Light cavalry bow Elite
1 Auxillary Archers Bowmen ------
1 Equities Sagittari Light cavalry bow ----
==
Ally, Brilliant
2 Foederati Heavy Cavalry Heavy cavalry impact ---- 10
1 Auxillary Archers Bowmen ------ 7
1 Artillary Medium artillery ---- 10
2 Equites Heavy cavalry impact ---- 10


200 points

  • Theodosius Competent
  • 3 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen armour impact missile support ------
  • 2 Skirmishers Light infantry sling ------
  • 2 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen armour impact missile support Elite

======

  • Anthemius Brilliant
  • 2 Auxilia Archers Bowmen ------
  • 2 Equites Heavy cavalry impact ------
  • 3 Equites Sagitarii Light cavalry bow ------
  • 1 Art Medium artillery ----

=====

  • Ally : Arcadius Competent
  • 2 Auxilia palatina Medium swordsmen impact missile support Elite
  • 1 Skirmishers Light infantry javelin ------
  • 2 Auxilia palatina Medium swordsmen impact missile support ----
  • 2 Auxilia Pseudocomitatenses Medium swordsmen Mediocre




200 Points

  • Army corps I Name of commander Value
  • Commander in Chief Competent
  • Number Troops description Troop type Quality
  • 2 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen armor impact ------
  • 2 Skirmishers Light infantry bow ------
  • 2 Bowmen Bowmen ------
  • 1 Equites Medium cavalry ------
  • 2 Legionaries Heavy swordsmen armor impact Elite

--

  • Army corps II Name of commander Value
  • Brilliant
  • Number Troops description Troop type Quality
  • 2 Equites Heavy cavalry impact ------
  • 2 Cataphracts Cataphract Elite
  • 2 Equites Sagitarii Light cavalry bow ------

--

  • Army corps III Name of commander Value
  • Brilliant
  • Number Troops description Troop type Quality
  • 4 Auxilia Palatina Medium swordsmen impact missile support ----
  • 2 Skirmishers Light infantry bow



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