Late roman army in miniatures

I’ve been really amazed by the number of foreign visitors on this late roman army website. More than half of the visitors are coming from other countries than France and Belgium !

So, i’ve decided to write in my (very) poor english an article for the guys who discovered this website without understanding one word of french. I’ve been asked two main things since the launch of this website : english content for this late roman army miniature project  and pictures of late roman army in force. If you want to read an another article in english on late roman arthurian warbands, just click !

picture of late roman army
Late roman army in force ! Hundreds of miniatures, and it is just a start

My goal is to recreate at 1/72 scale the roman army in Gaul at the end of the fourth century. More precisly in 399. I’m not an historian at all, so obviously i just can’t recreate it as it really was (and by the way we are not enough aware of it to make it possible).

Roman army figs 1/72
with 20 mm figurines, you can recreate an army much easier than using 28mm miniatures

Each painted figurine represents 10 soldiers. So an auxilia palatina, for instance, wich were formed by 500 milites, will be represented by 50 miniatures. But according with many scholars, and particularly Coello who worked on this matter, paper strengh was never close to reality : between casulaties, illness and many others causes, the late roman units could display 60% to 80% of their men. Sometimes, before the main campaign, huge recruitments were made fo fill the ranks, but it was rare.

dio roman winter 1/72
Even in winter, don’t cross the Rhine, or you will deal with the legios !! In this pictures you can see mattiaci, cornuti, lmitanei and lanciarii sabarienses

I’m not following any rules, and i’m not playing with these figurines. The « patrician » rules of roman wargamming looks very interesting, but i’ve no plans of using my units in wargames. Same with dioramas. Dios are great, but i don’t have a room dedicated to my passion (and to storage it !), and with two (very young) kids, i just can’t take the risk of letting my troops displayed for a too long time on a table…

So i just enjoy diplaying my army, wich is in fact very rare. To be honest i never did with all my units !!

late roman shield pattern 20 mm
every legio or auxilium palatinum has its proper shield pattern painted, and obviously the late roman army uniforms are respected for each miniature !

But today, my beloved wife and my kids are still on vacations, so for few hours i was able to get the miniatures out of their boxes and displayed them very quickly. There is no intention to show an army in march or even less a combat formation (duplex acies !!). I’m a big fan of later roman army tactics and later, when my army will be more important, i will surely displayed it in combat formation, using all my units. The pictures you are actually seeing aren’t using all the infantry or cavalry numerii i’ve done so far ! But as a visitor i surely be disapointed to not see more than one unit in pictures, so, for you my dear audience, please enjoy some legio, auxilia palatina and vexillatio chasing Alamanni during winter !

Just a teaser guys, you will have to come back  for more !

painted roman general
the Roman general Marcellinus, Count of the two germanies, is leading his force on the border against the mighty Alamanni !


5 commentaires Ajouter un commentaire

  1. Great little essay, and not bad english at all 🙂

    Aimé par 1 personne

    1. chariobaude dit :

      Thank you Claus ! I’ve to admit that this article is pretty old, and now i’ve many other units to display, i should take pictures of my army now, wich is maybe twice big at the one you see i thoses pics ! 😉


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