Home Introduction Persons Geogr. Sources Events Mijn blog(Nederlands)
Religion Subjects Images Queries Links Contact Do not fly Iberia
This is a non-commercial site. Any revenues from Google ads are used to improve the site.

Custom Search
Quote of the day: Poppaea died from a casual outburst of r
Do not display Latin text
Historiae by Tacitus
Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb
Book II Chapter 66: Vitellius emperor. The vanquished legions[AD 69]
Next chapter
Return to index
Previous chapter
Vitellius was troubled by the spirit of the vanquished legions, which was anything but broken. Scattered through all parts of Italy, and mingled with the conquerors, they spoke the language of enemies. The soldiers of the 14th legion were peculiarly furious. They said that they had not been vanquished; that at the Battle of Bedriacum only the veterans had been beaten, and that the strength of the legion had been absent. It was resolved that these troops should be sent back to Britain, from which province Nero had summoned them, and that the Batavian cohorts should in the meantime be quartered with them, because there was an old feud between them and the 14th. In the presence of such animosities between these armed masses, harmony did not last long. At Augusta of the Taurini it happened that a Batavian soldier fiercely charged some artisan with having cheated him, and that a soldier of the legion took the part of his host. Each man's comrades gathered round him; from words they came to blows, and a fierce battle would have broken out, had not two Praetorian cohorts taken the side of the 14th, and given confidence to them, while they intimidated the Batavians. Vitellius then ordered that these latter troops should be attached to his own force, in consideration of their loyalty, and that the legion should pass over the Graian Alps, and then take that line of road, by which they would avoid passing Vienna, for the inhabitants of that place were also suspected. On the night of the departure of the legion, a part of the Colonia Taurina was destroyed by the fires which were left in every direction. This loss, like many of the evils of war, was forgotten in the greater disasters which happened to other cities. When the 14th had made the descent on the other side of the Alps, the most mutinous among them were for carrying the standards to Vienna. They were checked, however, by the united efforts of the better disposed, and the legion was transported into Britain.

Event: Vitellius emperor

Angebat Vitellium victarum legionum haudquaquam fractus animus. sparsae per Italiam et victoribus permixtae hostilia loquebantur, praecipua quartadecimanorum ferocia, qui se victos abnuebant: quippe Bedriacensi acie vexillariis tantum pulsis viris legionis non adfuisse. remitti eos in Britanniam, unde a Nerone exciti erant, placuit atque interim Batavorum cohortis una tendere ob veterem adversus quartadecimanos discordiam. nec diu in tantis armatorum odiis quies fuit: Augustae Taurinorum, dum opificem quendam Batavus ut fraudatorem insectatur, legionarius ut hospitem tuetur, sui cuique commilitones adgregati a conviciis ad caedem transiere. et proelium atrox arsisset, ni duae praetoriae cohortes causam quartadecimanorum secutae his fiduciam et metum Batavis fecissent: quos Vitellius agmini suo iungi ut fidos, legionem Grais Alpibus traductam eo flexu itineris ire iubet quo Viennam vitarent; namque et Viennenses timebantur. nocte, qua proficiscebatur legio, relictis passim ignibus pars Taurinae coloniae ambusta, quod damnum, ut pleraque belli mala, maioribus aliarum urbium cladibus oblitteratum. quartadecimani postquam Alpibus degressi sunt, seditiosissimus quisque signa Viennam ferebant: consensu meliorum conpressi et legio in Britanniam transvecta.