Indomitable Sarmatians

Indomitable Sarmatians

In the army, the people fought Konev woman?

Sarmatians were known in ancient Rome as dangerous and worthy opponents, gained fame as «great warriors». For centuries, they tormented aging empire, causing a headache for the emperors and generals. Clad in heavy armor Sarmatian cavalry — cataphracts — like a tank column swept away everything in its path, and among the Sarmatian warriors often you could see women’s faces.

In the middle of the III century BC. e. The Roman Empire was in a deep political and economic crisis. This situation did not fail to take advantage of the neighbors.

The enemies of the Empire

In the II century BC. e. Sarmatian tribes began active movement to the west, and within a century occupied the area between the Dnieper-Don. In alliance with other tribes they repeatedly invaded the Roman lands south of the Danube — the province of Moesia.

According to sources, the first encounter with the Romans Sarmatians was 16 BC. e., when the Roman senator Rufus Tary successfully repelled their onslaught. However, soon the Romans whelming Pannonian-Dalmatian uprising, had to urgently recover their legions in Moesia and re-direct them against the Sarmatians and Dacians.

At the same time the poet Ovid, exiled Emperor Augustus in the year 8 BC. e. in a shabby town of Toma (located at the modern Constanta in Romania. — Comm. Aut.), said Sarmatian stay on the banks of Pontus (Black Sea). According to his testimony, they freely roamed the city, which is visited, crossing the ice of the Danube. Ovid even had to learn Sarmatian language.

Gradually Sarmatian association are drawn into the struggle of Rome with the barbarians and the Bosporus. By the middle of the I century western Sarmatians — Iazyges — crossed the mountain passes of the Carpathians and occupied the plain between the Danube and Tisza — Hungarian Pashto. After them advanced to the borders of Rome and other Sarmatian tribes — Roxelana. At the same time on the Dniester and the Danube there expanse of the state association of nomads led Farzoem, which is called the king, and even minted gold coin with his generic sign — tamga. Sarmats increasing pressure on Moesia and N.Pontic city. Taking advantage of the diversion of the main Roman forces from the province to fight the Parthian power, Farzoya troops allied with the Dacians and Bastarnae winter at the turn of 67-68 years invaded Moesia, where, according to the historian Tacitus, «hacked two Roman cohorts.»

But the next winter campaign undertaken over the year ended in disaster for them. In Moesia it strayed Legio III Gallica Romans, who at that time to throw out the Jews in Italy. Do not expect to find here the troops and forced to dismount due to deep snow, nine thousandth cavalry katafraktariev was utterly defeated and thrown back to the Danube. Soon they have been pushed beyond the Danube, and the boundaries of Moesia were seriously strengthened. This was due to the stabilization in the most Roman Empire, in particular — with the end of the Parthian campaign under the emperor Vespasian.

But 89 the emperor Domitian again directed against the Sarmatian troops after they had been destroyed, along with a legion legate. After three years of fighting ended in victory for the Romans. e.

Mnogokonnye soldiers

Ptolemy allocated among the motley array of ethnic tribes of barbarians large Roxolani and Alans. Ancient writers speak of them as strong, brave and «mnogokonnyh soldiers.» The Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus mentions living near the Dniester «European Alan», the birthplace of whom were Caucasian steppes and foothills. Their dominance in the northern Black Sea coast lasted for two and a half centuries, and the relocation is considered Alania last Sarmatian migration to the west.

According to the Jewish historian and writer Josephus, Alans about 36 CE?. e. Meotida occupied area (modern Sea of ​​Azov — Comm. aut.) around the river Tanais (Don). Some of them some time later moved to the Danube. In the II century they formed a powerful alliance of tribes, who took ^ dominant position among other nomadic peoples and gave them their name. According to Ammianus Marcellinus, Alans «little by little …

Frequent armed clashes with the Sarmatians in the I and II centuries BC. e. reflected in particular in the art of the Bosporus. Notable monuments of these events are painting Pantlcapaeum crypts, which can be seen glowing castle and town, foot and horse soldiers in armored armored horsemen galloping with flying capes and round phalars horses on the rump.

Leafing through the writings of ancient historians

The second half of the II century in South-Eastern and Central Europe is characterized by a sharp aggravation of the Roman-barbaric, and in particular the Roman-Sarmatian relations. As a result, they have resulted in two grand marcomannic wars 166-180 years. Marcomanni — a Germanic tribe who settled in the I century BC. e. in the area of ​​Maine, but then moved to the territory of modern Czech Republic, abandoned by the time the Celts. There they set up headed by the king Maroboduus powerful union of tribes, but soon themselves became dependent on Rome. This dependence is stopped only by marcomannic wars during the reign of Marcus Aurelius, when the Marcomanni reached up to Upper Italy.

Average Prut is in a certain proximity to the theater, and local Sarmatian tribes must have been involved in the events. The high professionalism of the soldiers buried here says at least the fact that in one of the tombs near the sword lay iron knife-dagger. The fact that the knife was used in combat with the long sword intended for equestrian combat. Together with him was much easier to reflect the counter enemy attacks, but this required not only strength and virtuoso technique of warfare, but also a professional military training. Perhaps not coincidentally on the backbone found Sarmatian were recorded the highest number of injuries and rare Egyptian scarab amulets of faience.

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