Soldiers keep the Peace in Britain
- The Romans were only
able to take over Britain because of their powerful Roman Army.
- They stationed up to
20,000 soldiers in Britain, divided into lots of different
- After the
army upheld the law and the rule of the Emperor.
- They protected the province of
Britannia from 'barbarians' in
Caledonia (Picts in Scotland) and pirates from Hibernia (Ireland) and
Germania (Anglo-Saxons from near
- Regular Roman troops
fought with short stabbing swords and spears. They had large
curved rectangular shields.
- But there were few wars.
Most of the day was spent:
- guard duty
- fuel collection
- looking after the
horses & pack animals
- The soldiers did lots of
other jobs at times
though, especially building work.
- Roman soldiers were well
fed. They mostly lived on bread, soup, meat, vegetables and
sour wine or vinegar.
- They were not allowed to
marry, but often had girlfriends and children living near
- Soldiers serving in
Britannia retired at the age of about 40. They were given land
to live on and encouraged to teach people Roman ways. This
might be in a type of town
called a 'colonia'. They were specially created for army
- Troubles back in Rome,
led to British commanders taking lots of troops out of Britain
in the late 4th century. When the Roman
army left, the Roman way of life fell apart.