Alesia 52 BC: The final struggle for Gaul by Nic Fields

By Nic Fields

Caesar's Legions laid siege to Vercingetorix's Gallic military in a single of the main tactically outstanding battles of all time. Outnumbered 6:1, the Romans equipped siege strains dealing with inward and outward and avoided the Gauls from breaking the siege. The crusade resulting in the conflict published ingenuity on each side, even though after all Caesar demonstrated his status in those actions.

In fifty two BC, Caesar's persevered technique of annihilation had engendered a spirit of desperation, which detonated right into a insurrection of Gallic tribes lower than the management of the charismatic, younger, Arvernian noble, Vercingetorix. although the Gallic humans shared a typical language and tradition, forging a coalition among the fiercely autonomous tribes used to be an almost most unlikely feat, and it used to be a tribute to Vercingetorix's character and skill.

Initially Vercingetorix's procedure was once to attract the Romans into pitched conflict. Vercingetorix was once soundly overwhelmed within the open box conflict opposed to Caesar at Noviodunum, through the Roman sack of Avaricum. even though, the motion that at Gergovia amounted to the main critical opposite that Caesar confronted within the complete of the Gallic battle. Vercingetorix begun a canny coverage of small struggle and shielding maneuvers, which gravely hampered Caesar's pursuits by way of removing his offers. For Caesar it used to be to be a grim summertime - his complete Gallic firm confronted liquidation.

In the development, via fabulous management, strength of fingers, and sometimes sheer success, Caesar succeeded. This culminated within the siege of Alesia (north of Dijon), which Caesar himself brilliantly narrates (Bellum Gallicum 7.68-89). together with his 80,000 warriors and 1,500 horsemen entrenched atop a mesa at Alesia, the star-crossed Vercingetorix believed Alesia used to be unassailable. Commanding lower than 50,000 legionaries and various auxiliaries, Caesar however started the siege. Vercingetorix then dispatched his cavalry to rally reinforcements from throughout Gaul, and in flip Caesar developed a contravallation and circumvallation, a double wall of fortifications round Alesia dealing with towards and clear of the oppidum. while the Gallic reduction military arrived, the Romans confronted the soldiers in Alesia plus an alleged 250,000 warriors and 8,000 horsemen attacking from with no. Caesar adroitly hired his inside strains, his fortifications, and the larger education and self-discipline of his males to offset the Gallic virtue, yet after days of heavy battling, his military used to be pressed to the verge of collapse. at the 3rd day, the Gauls, outfitted with fascines, scaling ladders and grappling hooks, captured the northwestern attitude of the circumvallation, which shaped a very important element within the Roman siege works. In desperation, Caesar in my view led the final of his reserves in a do-or-die counterattack, and while his Germanic horsemen outflanked the Gauls and took them within the rear, the conflict decisively became. The robust reduction military was once repulsed.

Vercingetorix ultimately admitted defeat, and the total strength surrendered tomorrow. Alesia used to be to be the final major resistance to Roman will in Gaul. It concerned almost each Gallic tribe in a disastrous defeat, and there have been adequate captives for every legionary to be presented one to promote as a slave. In a really actual experience Alesia symbolized the extinction of Gallic liberty. Rebellions could come and pass, yet by no means back may a Gallic warlord autonomous of Rome carry sway over the Celts of Gaul.

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They comprised bands of free tribesmen who were fit, agile and extremely belligerent with a positive taste for fighting. Like all tribal warriors, they were shrewd, quick-witted, wary, cunning and ready for all emergencies. While there was no attempt at discipline, their courage was tempestuous, excitable, self-conscious. Three Gaulish long slashing swords (Paris, Musée d’armée, inv. B 37276, B 30a, B 30b) recovered from Cernon-sur-Coole (département of Marne), and dated to the end of La Tène period (La Tène D, 150–30 BC).

He was to prove himself more than a match for Caesar in strategy. 3). Spectacular bronze sculpture of an idealized Vercingetorix, Place de Jaude, Clermont-Ferrand, by Fédéric Auguste Bartholdi (1834–1904) – who sculpted the Statue of Liberty. The patrician Caesar was one of those rare types that not only made the history but reported it too. To him, of course, the Arvernian war leader was little more than a troublesome rebel. Since the mid-19th century, Vercingetorix has been represented as a flawless patriot, as an accomplished leader, and as a symbol of Gallic resistance to the threat of external encroachment, real or imagined.

Esther Carré) His fellow Romans would have referred to these regions collectively as Gallia Comata (Long-haired Gaul). A fourth region is usually referred to by Caesar as Provincia, the Province. Its official name was Gallia Transalpina (Gaul-across-the-Alps) in contrast to Gallia Cisalpina (Gaul-this-side-of-the-Alps). In the Italian peninsula the Rubicon (Rubicone) marked the boundary between Gallia Cisalpina and Italy proper. Gallia Transalpina, unlike Gallia Comata, was already part of the empire.

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