The auxilia and numeri raised in the Roman province of Syria
In classical times the military value of the Semitic peoples was often called into doubt. A superficial examination does not support the charges of the classical writers. This thesis sets out to examine the military contribution made by the native population of the province of Syria to the non-citizen regiments of the Roman army. Introduction: the current state of knowledge about the Syrian auxilia is briefly summarised. Chapter 1 defines the scope and objectives of the thesis: temporally, from the late Republic until the mid-third century; spatially, the area of the province of Syria on the eve of the annexation of Arabia; while, the units treated are those which are described as alae, cohortes and 'numeri'. Chapter 2 is devoted to a treatment of the literary, epigraphic, papyrological, archaeological and artistic sources. Attention is then given to fundamental criteria relevant to the examination of the individual units. Chapter 3 treats the background to the employment of Syrian soldiers from the Persian Wars onwards, but especially in the late Republic and very early Principate. Chapter 4 is the main part of the thesis, being a detailed discussion of all the evidence for some 57 regiments. Each group of units - characterised by its tribal name - is preceded by a brief discussion of the region and its contribution to the legions and equestrian militiae. Chapter 5 resumes the preceding work and offers some general conclusions concerning the (considerable) contribution of Syria to the auxilia, their recruitment pattern (probably little different to that of the auxilia as a whole), and tabulates the evidence for formation dates and subsequent distribution. Six appendices look at: 'Tables' presenting the evidence for Syrian legionaries and Syrian auxiliaries on the diplomas; 'Dynastic Titles'; 'The Career of C. Velius Rufus ...'; 'Mesopotam,ian Soldiers in the Roman Army'; the date Of the career of Valerius Lollianus; and, a study of Josephus BJ,III,66. Illustrations consist of maps and photographs.