Thread Rating:
  • 3 Vote(s) - 4.33 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica's Last Stand.
Renatus wrote:

‘There, uncertain whether he should choose that as the base for war, with the insufficient number of soldiers considered and (bearing in mind)* the impetuosity of Petilius, punished with suitably potent lessons, he decided by the loss of one town to save everything.’

* I think that a verb has to be understood here. Other translators seem to think the same.



Many thanks for your interpretation and feel that it addresses the main points:

1. SP felt he did not have enough soldiers to advance on the Brythons (bearing in mind the
impetuosity of Petilius).
2. SP felt he did not have enough soldiers to defend London.
3. SP decided to save everything by losing one town.

I feel that your translation shows that SP did have a plan which depended on giving up London as part of that plan. I can however agree with you that he may have had to bring that plan forward or indeed alter it because he was not able to forsee the Brythons actions after London.

I think that it is interesting that Tacitus feels that he needs to explain why SP abandoned London and therefore we should perhaps pay it some attention.


Renatus wrote:

(Regarding Nathan Ross’ Timeline)

One may disagree with some of the detail (I doubt that Paulinus would have embarked upon his Anglesey campaign if he had been informed of trouble brewing in the east and I think that account has to be taken of Dio’s statement that, when advised of the rebellion, he took ship, presumably sailing along the North Wales coast to Chester, which may have gained him a little time) but, on the whole, it seems to present a plausible scenario that allows Paulinus to reach London before the arrival of the rebels (just).

I have great respect for Nathan’s work on this, much of which I agree with but I think that there are a couple of assumptions on the timeline which leads me to a different conclusion, which I will try to address here.

In consequence I will start with Nathan’s date of origin but this diverges regarding the fall of Colchester but follows the journey of SP to London.

Timeline by Nathan Ross

AD61 - March – After questioning the terms of Prasutagus's will, Procurator Catus sends men to flog Boudica and rape her daughters. Boudica vows revenge and begins to muster her forces.

Note: This whole timeline is based upon this starting in March. If this didn’t start until April or May the whole timeline is questioned. It seems unlikely that SP would have supported an action that would have the slightest chance of causing problems in his rear. This might indicate that SP was already on his way to Anglesey which again would have an effect on the timeline.

April – Iceni begin mobilisation, uncovering caches of 'decommissioned' weapons. Catus, informed of this, sends a message to Governor Paulinus at his campaign headquarters at Wroxeter.

Note: I agree with Renatus that if SP knew that the Iceni were raising forces in his rear he would have sent forces to stop this immediately – possibly the Ninth. Roman military thinking would imply this if we look at Scapula’s treatment of the Iceni and surrounding tribes in AD48.

May 1st – Paulinus begins his campaign against the Ordovices, marching north and west from Wroxeter.

May 10th – Boudica holds giant tribal assembly. Message sent to Catus from Colchester.

Note: It would seem logical that if a message was sent to Catus and that he decided to send troops that he would have informed the local commander Cerealis.

May 18th – Boudica’s force moves south into Trinovante territory. Catus sends 200 men from his bodyguard to reinforce Colchester, and another message to Paulinus (and possibly Cerealis).

Note: This is where the major divergence occurs from Nathan’s timeline. If Boudica’s forces moved into Trinovantes territory they would have been about 15 miles away from Colchester. Even with wagons that was a journey of less than 2 days, meaning that they would have attacked Colchester by May the 21st on this timeline.

May 20th – Message arrives with Cerealis. This may have been the turning point when Cerealis legate of the Ninth Legion at Longthorpe acted impetuously and decided to advance in support of Catus’ men.

Paulinus’s army reaches the Mona Strait opposite Anglesey. Catus’ 200 men reach Colchester.

May 21st – The Brythons attack Colchester

May 22nd – Catus’ second message (unrest amongst Iceni, gathering forces, threat to Colchester) reaches Paulinus at his camp on the Mona strait

Colchester destroyed along with its inhabitants.

May 23rd - Cerialis, marches 22 miles from Longthorpe to Godmanchester.

May 24th - Cerealis marches 15 miles to Cambridge.

Parts of the Brythonic Army turn to face Cerealis

May 25th - Cerialis marches 19 miles on the Via Devana towards Wixoe and is ambushed at Sturmer.

The Ninth is destroyed and Cerealis escapes either to the fort at Great Chesterford or perhaps at Wixoe.

Paulinus’s army crosses the strait and attacks Anglesey.


May 27th – Romans destroy the remaining enemy forces on Anglesey

May 28th – Romans burn sacred Druidic groves on Anglesey. Paulinus then pulls his army back across the straits, and sends an express messenger to Cerialis to advance to reinforce Colchester.

May 30th – Paulinus begins a rapid march back towards Wroxeter with the Fourteenth legion and several cohorts of the Twentieth.

Note: There is no definitive record that the Twentieth was at Anglesey. It is assumed because the Twentieth were at the battle with Boudica.

June 2nd – Paulinus arrives at Chester

Note: According to the revised timeline for the destruction of Colchester (May 21st to May 22nd) the Brythons would have been hanging around for 10 days.

June 4th – Paulinus arrives back at Wroxeter.

June 8th - Paulinus's advance reaches Towcester. Catus flees for Gaul by ship.

June 10th – Paulinus marches into St Albans and meets a second messenger with news of the defeat of Cerialis and flight of Catus.

June 11th – Paulinus marches on from St Albans and enters London. He learns that the Second Legion have not advanced to meet him. Iceni and Trinovantes still in their homelands.

Note: The Brythons would have been waiting for Paulinus to attack them for some 21 days.
It would therefore be apparent that their prime objective was NOT to attack London.

June 12th - Paulinus, deciding that London cannot be held, orders the inhabitants to evacuate the city.

June 13th – Paulinus destroys his supplies and retreats from London.

June 14th – Iceni sack and burn London

Note: If the Brythons were in London on the 14th of June they would have been able to harass his retreating column which was loaded down with refugees with their swift moving warbands.


Kind Regards - Deryk
Deryk
Reply


Messages In This Thread
Re: Calling all armchair generals! - by Ensifer - 03-11-2010, 03:13 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 02-18-2012, 06:26 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 02-19-2012, 12:02 AM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 02-19-2012, 02:50 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 02-19-2012, 05:40 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 02-19-2012, 11:26 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-24-2012, 05:11 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-24-2012, 09:42 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-24-2012, 10:10 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-25-2012, 03:11 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-25-2012, 03:25 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-25-2012, 08:36 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-26-2012, 02:57 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 04-27-2012, 01:50 PM
Re: Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Steve Kaye - 08-05-2012, 02:24 PM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by Deryk - 10-07-2012, 05:00 AM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by antiochus - 11-07-2014, 02:18 PM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by antiochus - 11-08-2014, 01:50 AM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by antiochus - 11-11-2014, 02:03 AM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by antiochus - 11-18-2014, 07:54 AM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by antiochus - 11-20-2014, 02:37 AM
Calling all armchair generals! Boudica\'s Last Stand. - by antiochus - 11-25-2014, 08:29 AM

Possibly Related Threads…
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Armchair Wall walking mcbishop 3 2,558 01-11-2012, 03:22 AM
Last Post: Vindex

Forum Jump: