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 striking battles of all time. Outnumbered 6:1, the Romans outfitted siege traces dealing with inward and outward and avoided the Gauls from breaking the siege. The crusade resulting in the conflict printed ingenuity on either side, even though in spite of everything Caesar demonstrated his repute in those actions.

In fifty two BC, Caesar's endured technique of annihilation had engendered a spirit of desperation, which detonated right into a insurrection of Gallic tribes below 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 self reliant tribes used to be an almost most unlikely feat, and it was once a tribute to Vercingetorix's character and skill.

Initially Vercingetorix's technique used to be to attract the Romans into pitched conflict. Vercingetorix was once soundly overwhelmed within the open box conflict opposed to Caesar at Noviodunum, by means of the Roman sack of Avaricum. notwithstanding, the motion that at Gergovia amounted to the main critical opposite that Caesar confronted within the entire of the Gallic struggle. Vercingetorix all started a canny coverage of small warfare and shielding maneuvers, which gravely hampered Caesar's routine by means of removing his provides. For Caesar it was once to be a grim summertime - his entire Gallic firm confronted liquidation.

In the development, by way of very good management, strength of hands, and infrequently sheer success, Caesar succeeded. This culminated within the siege of Alesia (north of Dijon), which Caesar himself brilliantly narrates (Bellum Gallicum 7.68-89). along 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 built 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 traces, his fortifications, and the better 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 vital aspect within the Roman siege works. In desperation, Caesar in my opinion led the final of his reserves in a do-or-die counterattack, and whilst his Germanic horsemen outflanked the Gauls and took them within the rear, the conflict decisively became. The strong aid military was once repulsed.

Vercingetorix eventually admitted defeat, and the full strength surrendered tomorrow. Alesia was once to be the final major resistance to Roman will in Gaul. It concerned nearly each Gallic tribe in a disastrous defeat, and there have been adequate captives for every legionary to be offered one to promote as a slave. In a truly actual experience Alesia symbolized the extinction of Gallic liberty. Rebellions might come and cross, yet by no means back might a Gallic warlord autonomous of Rome carry sway over the Celts of Gaul.

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By Nic Fields

Caesar's Legions laid siege to Vercingetorix's Gallic military in a single of the main tactically striking battles of all time. Outnumbered 6:1, the Romans outfitted siege traces dealing with inward and outward and avoided the Gauls from breaking the siege. The crusade resulting in the conflict printed ingenuity on either side, even though in spite of everything Caesar demonstrated his repute in those actions.

In fifty two BC, Caesar's endured technique of annihilation had engendered a spirit of desperation, which detonated right into a insurrection of Gallic tribes below 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 self reliant tribes used to be an almost most unlikely feat, and it was once a tribute to Vercingetorix's character and skill.

Initially Vercingetorix's technique used to be to attract the Romans into pitched conflict. Vercingetorix was once soundly overwhelmed within the open box conflict opposed to Caesar at Noviodunum, by means of the Roman sack of Avaricum. notwithstanding, the motion that at Gergovia amounted to the main critical opposite that Caesar confronted within the entire of the Gallic struggle. Vercingetorix all started a canny coverage of small warfare and shielding maneuvers, which gravely hampered Caesar's routine by means of removing his provides. For Caesar it was once to be a grim summertime - his entire Gallic firm confronted liquidation.

In the development, by way of very good management, strength of hands, and infrequently sheer success, Caesar succeeded. This culminated within the siege of Alesia (north of Dijon), which Caesar himself brilliantly narrates (Bellum Gallicum 7.68-89). along 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 built 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 traces, his fortifications, and the better 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 vital aspect within the Roman siege works. In desperation, Caesar in my opinion led the final of his reserves in a do-or-die counterattack, and whilst his Germanic horsemen outflanked the Gauls and took them within the rear, the conflict decisively became. The strong aid military was once repulsed.

Vercingetorix eventually admitted defeat, and the full strength surrendered tomorrow. Alesia was once to be the final major resistance to Roman will in Gaul. It concerned nearly each Gallic tribe in a disastrous defeat, and there have been adequate captives for every legionary to be offered one to promote as a slave. In a truly actual experience Alesia symbolized the extinction of Gallic liberty. Rebellions might come and cross, yet by no means back might a Gallic warlord autonomous of Rome carry sway over the Celts of Gaul.

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Extra resources for Alesia 52 BC: The final struggle for Gaul

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Likewise, Caesar’s tripartite division of the inhabitants of Gaul was an oversimplification. It is evident from recent archaeological studies of settlements in what was northern Gaul that some of the tribes known as Germanic to Roman aristocrats may well have been what we now call La Tène Celtic, or a mixture of the two. Obviously the cultural boundary between Celt and German had not been such a sharp edge, defined by the Rhine, but a broad and vague band of hybridisation that extended on both sides of the river.

When his soldiers realized that Caesar himself was coming, they fought with greater vigour and won the day. There were of course considerable risks when demonstrating such direct leadership on the battlefield. Caesar clearly understood that command must be singular, and that only when momentum was required to assure victory (or in a desperate and doomed last stand) should the commander enter the forefront of the fighting. Whatever sort of conqueror Caesar was, there is no question that he was superbly equipped for the role.

Aulus Hirtius, who now takes up the story, mentions a concerted plan, but these troubles appeared to be nothing other than the backwash of Alesia. The last remaining serious resistance was in the south-west where Drappes, a Senonian with influence among other tribes, and Lucterius, a local Cadurcan, took over the well-fortified oppidum of Uxellodunum (Puy d’Issolu) overlooking the Duranius (Dordogne). The stronghold fell after Caesar cut off its water supply. To put a stop to further revolts, and doubtless to remind the natives of the benefits of Roman overlordship, Caesar ordered the hands of all those who had borne arms against him to be cut off.

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