Caesar

Caesar BG 1.3 read aloud (CF)

Hīs rēbus adductī et auctōritāte Orgetorīgis permōtī, cōnstituērunt ea quae ad proficīscendum pertinērent comparāre, iūmentōrum et carrōrum quam māximum numerum coëmere, sēmentēs quam māximās facere ut in itinere cōpia frūmentī suppeteret, cum proximīs cīvitātibus pācem et amīcitiam cōnfīrmāre. Ad eās rēs cōnficiendās biennium sibi satis esse dūxērunt: in tertium annum profectiōnem lēge cōnfīrmant. Ad eās rēs cōnficiendās Orgetorīx dēligitur. Is sibi lēgātiōnem ad cīvitātēs suscēpit. In eō itinere persuādet Casticō, Catamantāloedis fīliō Sēquanō, cūius pater rēgnum in Sēquanīs multōs annōs obtinuerat et ā senātū populī Rōmānī amīcus appellātus erat, ut rēgnum in cīvitāte suā occupāret, quod pater ante habuerat; itemque Dumnorīgī Aeduō frātrī Dīviciācī, quī eō tempore prīncipātum in cīvitāte obtinēbat āc māximē plēbī acceptus erat, ut idem cōnārētur persuādet, eīque fīliam suam in mātrimōnium dat. Perfacile factū esse illīs probat cōnāta perficere, proptereā quod ipse suae cīvitātis imperium obtentūrus esset: nōn esse dubium quīn tōtīus Galliae plūrimum Helvētiī possent; sē suīs cōpiīs suōque exercitū illīs rēgna conciliātūrum cōnfīrmat. Hāc ōrātiōne adductī inter sē fidem et iūs iūrandum dant, et rēgnō occupātō per trēs potentissimōs āc fīrmissimōs populōs tōtīus Galliae sēsē potīrī posse spērant.

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Caesar BG 1.1 read aloud (CF)

Gallia est omnis dīvīsa in partēs trēs, quārum ūnam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquītānī, tertiam quī ipsōrum linguā Celtae, nostrā Gallī appellantur. Hī omnēs linguā, īnstitūtīs, lēgibus inter sē differunt. Gallōs ab Aquītānīs Garumna flūmen, ā Belgīs Mātrona et Sēquana dīvidit. Hōrum omnium fortissimī sunt Belgae, proptereā quod ā cultū atque hūmānitāte prōvinciae longissimē absunt, minimēque ad eōs mercātōrēs saepe commeant atque ea quae ad effēminandōs animōs pertinent important, proximīque sunt Germānīs, quī trāns Rhēnum incolunt, quibuscum continenter bellum gerunt. Quā dē causā Helvētiī quoque reliquōs Gallōs virtūte praecēdunt, quod ferē cotīdiānīs proeliīs cum Germānīs contendunt, cum aut suīs fīnibus eōs prohibent aut ipsī in eōrum fīnibus bellum gerunt. Eōrum ūna pars, quam Gallōs obtinēre dictum est, initium capit ā flūmine Rhodanō; continētur Garumnā flūmine, Ōceanō, fīnibus Belgārum; attingit etiam ab Sēquanīs et Helvētiīs flūmen Rhēnum; vergit ad septentriōnēs. Belgae ab extrēmīs Galliae fīnibus oriuntur; pertinent ad īnferiōrem partem flūminis Rhēnī; spectant in septentriōnem et orientem sōlem. Aquītānia ā Garumnā flūmine ad Pȳrēnaeōs mōntēs et eam partem Ōceanī quae est ad Hispāniam pertinet; spectat inter occāsum sōlis et septentriōnēs.

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Caesar BG 1.2 read aloud (CF)

Apud Helvētiōs longē nōbilissimus fuit et dītissimus Orgetorīx. Is, M. Messālā et M. Pupio Pīsōne cōnsulibus, rēgnī cupiditāte inductus coniūrātiōnem nōbilitātis fēcit, et cīvitātī persuāsit ut dē fīnibus suīs cum omnibus cōpiīs exīrent: perfacile esse, cum virtūte omnibus praestārent, tōtīus Galliae imperiō potīrī. Id hōc facilius iīs persuāsit, quod undique locī nātūrā Helvētiī continentur: ūnā ex parte flūmine Rhēnō lātissimō atque altissimō, quī agrum Helvētium ā Germānīs dīvidit; alterā ex parte mōnte Iūrā altissimō, quī est inter Sēquanōs et Helvētiōs; tertiā lacū Lemannō et flūmine Rhodanō, quī prōvinciam nostram ab Helvētiīs dīvidit. Hīs rēbus fīēbat ut et minus lātē vagārentur et minus facile fīnitimīs bellum īnferre possent: quā ex parte hominēs bellandī cupidī māgnō dolōre adficiēbantur. Prō multitūdine autem hominum et prō glōriā bellī atque fortitūdinis angustōs sē fīnēs habēre arbitrābantur, quī in longitūdinem mīlia passuum CCXL, in lātitūdinem CLXXX patēbant.

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Caesar's Strategy and Genius

Caesar’s Strategy and Genius (14:57). Loren J. Samons, Professor of Classical Studies, Boston University. Dr. Samons  is the author of many books and articles on Greek and Roman history, and the recipient of several teaching awards, including the Distinguished Teaching Professorship from The National Endowment for the Humanities (2011-). This podcast draws on material from his popular course at Boston University, “Warfare in Antiquity.” Recorded August, 2012.

Loren J. Samons

Outline

1.Why Caesar went to Gaul. Caesar’s first consulship (59 BC) and the First Triumvirate; imperium and immunity from prosecution; the ten-year window; Caesar’s proconsular provinces; the pretext of protecting Gallia Transalpina. 

2.Caesar’s strategy. Projecting power beyond the borders of provinces; pacification vs. conquest and incorporation; wintering in Gaul; invasions of Germany and Britain; the importance of money; the Commentaries as publicity for Caesar.

3.Caesar’s tactics. The use of location and topography to win without battle; the relative speed of Caesar’s army; the use of reserve power; campaigns of reprisal.

4.Caesar’s mastery of the psychology of his troops. Inspiring troops by fighting with them; motivating them in a difficult situation.

 

Caesar's Army

Caesar’s Army (12:34). Loren J. Samons, Professor of Classical Studies, Boston University. Dr. Samons  is the author of many books and articles on Greek and Roman history, and the recipient of several teaching awards, including the Distinguished Teaching Professorship from The National Endowment for the Humanities (2011-). This podcast draws on material from his popular course at Boston University, “Warfare in Antiquity.” Recorded August, 2012. 

Loren J. Samons

Outline:

1.Structure: citizens vs. professionals; the legion; auxiliaries; the cohort; the century; battle lines

2.Weaponry: gladius; scutum; pilum

3.Tactics: the use of the pilum; the use of the gladius; the importance of reserve power; the triplex acies

4.Command: commanders with imperium; military tribunes; centurions; chief centurions

5.Allied troops: Gallic cavalry; light armed troops

 

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