Sunday, November 4

We Were There with Caesar's Legions

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Julius Caesar raided Britain twice - in 55 and 54 BC - during the Gallic Wars, so we can guess that this book occurs during one of these years. The invasions led to the creation of a Roman government in eastern England, and also brought roads and other 'new' inventions to the area.

The Roman legion had a reputation for being fierce and invincible. They were well-organized and could quickly take over a region. Most soldiers were from the plebian class, and officers had to be able to afford their own horses, as they were not supplied by the government. 

Each man served for a minimum of twenty-five years before retirement. Upon completion of service, he was granted land and a small pension. (This served Rome well, as the landowners were almost all trained military men who could protect the towns.)

Legions were composed of approximately 5,000 infantry, recruited from the ranks of Roman citizens. Most soldiers were volunteers, but during emergencies, they used the draft to obtain more men.

Upon joining the ranks, a man was issued his uniform of rectangular shield, short sword, dagger, chain mail jacket, lorica segmentata, belt, helmet, kilt, shirt, and sandals. The sandals were specially-designed to make loud noises and create sparks on rocky ground, helping to intimidate the enemy.

Each legion had its own name, number, and special banner. Within each legion, the centuries (groups of 100 men) also had special banners. It was similar to the way that Boy Scouts are set up - with each troop being divided into patrols.

As legions moved around, they built camps, towers, and roads -- leading to the saying "All roads lead to Rome." Many of the earliest architectural finds uncovered through Europe can be traced back to these legions.

Access the complete unit in the 'We Were There' Novel Studies Bundle!

Includes THIRTY-SIX unit studies covering World & American History. Each unit addresses a new topic, spanning the the ancient world through post-WW2.  Each unit has introductory text, which will give the student basic background information about the topic at hand.

  • There are photographs and illustrations, and we have also included primary documents when available.
  • After this text, there are featured videos, which augment the background information and help make the topic more accessible for more visual students.
  • You will also find a short list of reading books, including a featured novel that the unit builds upon.
  • There are vocabulary words, places, and people to identify.
  • Reading comprehension, critical thinking questions, and writing assignments are included.
  • We add fun with hands-on activities and extra videos to watch that will bring the era to life.

These studies are directed toward upper grades students, but some have resources for younger students so that the whole family can work together. Our family has used unit studies as curriculum for many years, and we hope that your family will enjoy these, too!

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  1. they were very influential weren't they?

    1. I guess it depends on the part of the world you live in, but for the western world for sure!


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