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Ancient Warfare Vol VIII-5 - Rebellion against the Empire

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Ancient Warfare VIII.5 Theme : Rebellion against the Empire: The Jewish-Roman wars Theme:... mehr
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Ancient Warfare VIII.5

Theme: Rebellion against the Empire: The Jewish-Roman wars

Theme: Mladen Popovic, "Jewish revolts in the first two centuries AD - Historical introduction"

It is well known that in the opening statement of his Jewish War, Flavius Josephus imitates the fifth-century BC Athenian Thucydides when he says that "the war of the Jews against the Romans is not only the greatest of the wars of our own time, but so far as accounts have reached us, nearly of all whichever broke out between cities or nations".

Theme: Tilman G. Moritz, "Josephus' account of the First Jewish War - A history of victors?"

By the time Jerusalem was seized in late AD 70, the first coins celebrating the Roman conquest of Judea had already been made. The following year, spectators stood in awe when spoils and prisoners of said war were paraded through the streets of Rome. The most exotic items were deposited in the recently restored Temple of Peace for display, while a majority provided the funds for anall-new amphitheatre to be built in place of Nero's dismantled palace. There was to be no doubt about the great benefits of the Judean venture, as well as its importance to the Flavian dynasty.

Theme: Vassilis Pergalias, "The Third Gallica during the Revolt of AD 66 - Soldiers of the Empire"

By AD 40, the Third Gallica Legion of the Roman army consisted of legionaries recruited in the province of Syria fromRoman citizens, descendants of legionaries from Spain, Italy, and Gaul, who had settled in Syria over a period of almost a hundred years. The legion, initially raised in the west, took part in the civil war of Julius Caesar against Pompey and in Mark Antony's bloody campaign against Parthia. Under the latter it was eventually posted to Syria.

Theme: Sean Manning, "The victoria navalis - A war at sea?"

Amongst the thousands of coins racked in the British Museum is a series with the enigmatic legend victoria navalis. While to a specialist all Roman coins are interesting, some writers think that these coins are also of interest to students of the Jewish War. What could connect a war most famous for sieges in the hills with victory at sea?

Theme: Sidney E. Dean, "The Siege of Jerusalem, AD 70 - Titus ante portas"

In December of AD 69, Roman general Vespasian embarked for Europe to press his claim to the imperial throne. Since arriving in the Middle East in spring of 67, his 50,000 man army had pacified Galilee, Samaria and most of Judea. But Jerusalem remained ahotbed of revolt. Vespasian left his thirty-year-old son Titus and his experienced chief of staff Tiberius Julius Alexander behind to take the city and end the Jewish uprising once and for all.

Theme: Graham Sumner, "Roman imperial legionary cavalryman - Roman soldier in Judea"

Appearances can often be deceptive. This is particularly true with regards to the legionary cavalry (equites legionis),so often seen as simply an appendage of the legion. This point is reinforced by the classic painting of an entire legion by the late Peter Connolly with "120 horsemen scouts and dispatch riders", a number derived dir ectly from Josephus (War 3.120).

Theme: Joseph Hall, "The Second Jewish Revolt, AD 116-117 - Rebellion in the Diaspora"

For a generation after the great Jewish revolt of AD 66-74, tensions had been simmering, and old wounds festered amongst the Jewish Diaspora in the eastern provinces of the empire. Children had grown to adulthood hearing stories of Rome's brutal treatment of the Jews, and had come to despise those who still occupied and exploited a land which they considered their own. In AD 116 however, these grievances erupted into violence, and the Emperor Trajan was forced to divert much needed troops from hisParthian campaign to quell massive and bloody insurrections in Cyrenaica, Egypt, Cyprus, and Mesopotamia.

Theme: Arnold Blumberg, "The Bar Kochba Revolt - Judea's last bid for freedom"

When Hadrian became emperor in AD 117, the Roman Empire was embroiled in conflicts along its borders from Britain to Parthia. Fortunately, the new ruler proved both a capable administrator and able strategist who achieved near universal peacealong the frontiers in only a few years. He accomplished this by establishing a defence system that allowed the legions to react rapidly to incursions into the empire's territory. However, a plan designed to hold back invaders from without proved less able to respond to the threat of internal strife. The revolt of Bar Kochba in AD 132 led to serious warfare inside the empire, which was onlyovercome by Hadrian's use of extreme and desperate measures.

Special: Owen Rees, "Dogs in ancient Greek warfare - Let slip the dogs of war"

The role of animals in warfare has captured the imagination of readers and film watchers for many years: from the beauty and majesty of the war horse, to the dignified but ingenious utilisation of the messenger pigeon. Yet it is the use of man'sbest friend that evokes the most impassioned of images - the unleashed ferocity of a live and powerful weapon, marked with the poignancy of undivided loyalty, makes the dog of war an emotive and captivating image. Their usage is well established and their presence in history books often adds a touch of colour to an otherwise drab military narrative. When it comes to Classical Greekhistory however, the story is less certain: they appear in military iconography and artwork but not in the histories, they appear in combat manuals but not in any battles - this incongruence begs the overarching question, did the Greeks use dogs in war?

Special: Marc G. DeSantis, "Alexander's antidote to Persian sea power - Conquering the sea from the land"

At the outset of Alexander the Great's invasion of the Persian Empire in 334 BC , the warships of the Persian fleet greatly outnumbered those of his own. If he did not somehow defeat or otherwise neutralize the enemy navy, it would remain a constantthreat to his lines of communication with Macedonia as well as all the other territories that he conquered. The Persian fleet,comprised mainly of skilled Phoenician sailors fighting in the service of the Great King Darius III , was so superior thatinstead of taking it head-on, Alexander decided upon a logistic strategy that involved defeating it by depriving itstriremes oftheir all-important naval bases.
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