THE ANCIENTS COLLECTION
ARMIES AND ENEMIES OF ANCIENT ROME
The Roman Army of The Late Republic,
2 Legionaires Marching (Right Leg Forward)
After the completion of the Social War in 88 B.C., Roman citizenship
was granted to all its Italian allies (the socii) south of the Po River.
The alae were abolished,
and the socii were from now on recruited directly
into uniformly organized and equipped legions.
The non-Italian allies that had long fought for Rome
(e.g. Gallic and Numidian cavalry)
continued to serve alongside the legions but remained irregular units under their own leaders.
For reasons that remain uncertain to this day,
the structure of the Roman army changed dramatically during the late Republic.
The maniple, which had been the standard unit throughout the mid-Republic,
was replaced by the cohort as the new standard tactical unit of the legions,
while the Roman citizen cavalry (equites)
and light infantry (velites) disappeared from the battlefield. Traditionally,
many of these changes have been attributed to the reforms of Gaius Marius ,
but some scholars argue that they may have happened far more gradually
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