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Calling all armchair generals! Boudica's Last Stand.
Quote:Tacitus states: "His dominions were ravaged by the centurions; the slaves pillaged his house, and his effects were seized as lawful plunder... The whole country was considered as a legacy bequeathed to the plunderers. The relations of the deceased king were reduced to slavery." To me this seems that the situation had progressed far worse than you indicate.

Possibly - but the quote could relate to the actions of small parties of men sent by the procurator against the royal household and certain of the nobility, rather than a wide-ranging loot and pillage. By treating those at the top of the social tree like this, Catus was demonstrating what the rest of the Iceni could expect if they resisted. So maybe no need to assume large numbers of Romans operating in Icenia...


Quote:I proposed that the 200 troops reached Colchester about a week after the tribal assembly and the attack upon the town began about a week after that... It was not that the 200 troops did not arrive in time to organise the defences but that no one realised that it was necessary to do so until it was too late.

About this 'tribal muster' - I've assumed that something of the sort would have been necessary. Boudica herself was not, it seems, the queen of the Iceni, just the widow of the king - Dio calls her a 'queen' but Tacitus, tellingly, does not. So negotiation would have been required to persuade the Iceni and others to act under her command (or with her as a figurehead, perhaps). This negotiation would have required meetings, assemblies, consensus among potentially rival claimants to Prasutagus' throne... probably a lot of feasting, drinking, speechifying and gathering of troops and arms. Not something that could be accomplished quickly!

As for Colchester - yes, there may have been any number of reasons why their defences were inadequate. Political divisions, treachery by vacillating locals, military pride (not wanting to appear cowed by riotous natives), or simple panic. I'm reminded of the many British garrisons and communities in India in 1857, who failed to take any steps in defence against the rebels for weeks on end, often until it was too late... We have the benefit of hindsight. They did not.


Quote:I doubt that London was the one-horse town that some apparently have thought it to be... it was, presumably, where the procurator and the governor were based.

Colchester was supposedly still the capital of Britain at the time - so the governor would be officially based there (although Paulinus clearly spent most of his time away with the army!). London may already have been the capital of the procurator though: Catus' successor Classicianus died there in office, and his tomb was built there.



Quote:Nothing in the sources suggests that the legion itself was reluctant to march.

Not the Second perhaps - but there is the scene in Tacitus where the soldiers hang back from the assault on Anglesey. Fuentes, I think, cites this as maybe suggesting poor morale or a mutinous spirit in Paulinus' force. It may just be Tacitean rhetoric though - the Druids were so fearsome that even veteran legionaries were scared, but Paulinus prevailed...
Nathan Ross
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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 Nathan Ross - 10-20-2012, 04:11 PM
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

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