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The Military Institutions of the Romans

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  75 ratings  ·  9 reviews
Also known as “De Re Militari” (On Military Matters), this is the only handbook of Roman warfare to survive to modern times. Written when the power of the Roman empire was already waning, it was intended to educate a new emperor on the capabilities of the Roman legions. Vegetius touches on all military matters, including the selection and training of recruits, the importan ...more
ebook, EPUB Edition
Published August 10th 2012 by Tales End Press (first published 1767)
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Herman Gigglethorpe
This is a concise insight into Roman military tactics. The appeals to the emperor Valentinian (II?) will make you roll your eyes, but you will understand that Romans were well aware that their empire was declining well before it fell. The malaise is very apparent here.
The Great Field Marshall de Saxe said when you study about war study the Romans for they are the true masters of war. Vegetius writes elloquently about the "ancients" during the last days of the great empire. He writes on what made the Roman Army the greatest way machine in history. He revviwes the unmatched discipline of the Romans and their tactics which were centuries ahead of their time. Vegetius is right, "Si vis pacem, para bellum" or "If you want peace prepare for war."
Another great quote
Short and concise. Apparently many commanders during the medieval times possessed a copy of this. If you're a student of war and martial arts, it wouldn't hurt to own a copy of this. Not only as a remainder of the importance of discipline in war and combat, but also in life.

'Discipline was the only road to victory... and thereby recovered their superiority. (on Rome's eventual destruction of Hannibal)
The best scholarly edition available in English. I won't comment on the work itself except to say that this late Roman work was the Medieval bible on the Art of War at least until the mid-fifteenth century. The footnotes and the work unpacking what pieces of Vegetius might come from Cato and other authors is extremely helpful to an amateur classicist of a reenactor.
Insightful regarding what a good military strategist back in the roman era took into consideration when preparing for war, not only about tactics while in the battlefield, but ranging from the selection of soldiers, to fortification, food, etc.
A fascinating text that provides detailed insight into the functioning of the Roman military. Many of its lessons remain relevant to the present day, particularly in the realm of defence and security.
Trevor Russell
Merely gnomic wisdom and external theorizing masquerading as eternal military knowledge.
John Yelverton
A very interesting book on the art of war and the methods used by the Roman Empire to accomplish their military discipline and conquests.
Mostly dry and would probably only hold the interest of those who like this sort of thing. Highly quotable.
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Publius Flavius Vegetius Renatus, commonly referred to simply as Vegetius, was a writer of the Later Roman Empire. Nothing is known of his life or station beyond what he tells us in his two surviving works: Epitoma rei militaris (also referred to as De Re Militari), and the lesser-known Digesta Artis Mulomedicinae, a guide to veterinary medicine.

More about Vegetius...
On Roman Military Matters; A 5th Century Training Manual in Organization, Weapons and Tactics, as Practiced by the Roman Legions On Roman Military Matters: A Training Manual in Organization, Weapons and Tactics Practiced by the Roman Legions

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