Battle of Teutoberg Forest

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RoyalGovnaWatts

Ad Honorem
Dec 2010
2,282
California
Look at what happened to the Gauls or the Britons. they were thoroughly romanized.
What is your point? The Gauls and Britons had their fair share of rebellions after being pacified. I just dont understand how you can jump to such extremes without providing an explanation for your reasoning.
 

Richard Stanbery

Ad Honorem
Jan 2009
8,298
Tennessee
Well, if Rome would have taken all of Germania, and if the Legions were able to recruit from Germania extensively, and if the German troops in the Legions would have remained loyal to Rome....

Then that does change things considerably. Those ifs.

For, we might have seen retiring Germanic legionaries being given lands in Britannia upon retirement. Also, we might have seen pacified Germanic tribes being sent to Britannia to tame the unruly ones on those Islands. And so, the Anglo Saxon-Germanic invasion/migration to Britannia thing might have went on as scheduled anyway.

The couple of differences might have seen Rome better able to withstand Hunic incursions, and of course, the Eagle of Rome standing strong over Ireland. Germanic troops would have brought the standard to that place pretty quickly. It is just too fertile and lush not to conquer. Not if one is Rome, and the legions full of Germanic troops and the borders of the Empire secure and strongly guarded. Why not turn East, and finish with Ireland?

Actually, upon thinking about it, we might see a Germanification of the Roman Empire. Perhaps the capitol moved to Trier, and more and more Germanic culture included in everyday Roman things. And so, probably no sacking of Rome in 410 AD. No fall of Rome at all.

And so, we might have, by the late 700s, seen a Germanic Emperor seated over the head of a "Holy Roman Empire" after all.

He might even have called himself...Charlemagne?

But history has always hinged on those rascally ifs, hasnt it?
 

okamido

Forum Staff
Jun 2009
29,885
land of Califia
Like my Granpappy, you're from Tennesse, Richard. Do you remember the saying , "If the dog hadn't stopped to take a (bm) ;), he would've caught the rabbit! :)
 

Richard Stanbery

Ad Honorem
Jan 2009
8,298
Tennessee
True words. :)

What part of Tennessee? We might be kin, Oki?

Have ye got brown hair and blue eyes, medium build and stand about 5'9 or 10'? Maybe pure black beard with brown hair?

Do ye have the look of the Scots-Irish about ye?
 
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Fire_Raven

Ad Honorem
Jul 2010
2,776
Oregon
Roman Empire under Augustus

At the time of the battle, the Romans were working on pacifying those parts of Germania up to the Elbe. If they had been successful this would of shortened the border with unconquered Germania considerably.
 

Guaporense

Ad Honorem
Mar 2011
5,047
Brazil
The Romans, if they became serious, could have crushed the entire area of modern Germany under their control. However they didn't conquer Germany for a single reason: it was too poor and too brutish to pay taxes and to not revolt frequently.

The battle of Teutoburg forest only showed to the Romans that these brutes couldn't be easily conquered, so the cost of conquering then would be too great for the small benefit of the acquisition of the poorest and less civilized lands of western europe.

It wasn't that Rome couldn't conquer Germania, as it is estimated that Germania had only 3 million inhabitants at the time while the Roman Empire had 70 million inhabitants. Rome was orders of magnitude more powerful than any other bordering state or tribe in the 1st century CE (that includes Parthia). They didn't conquer more land for the reason that Rome had "rejected it as useless" (in Aelius said in 155 CE: http://loudoun.nvcc.edu/home/docampbell/Hist101/Documents/AeliusAristides.html).

The Roman Empire stopped expanding when it had run out of lands to conquer that could pay the costs of occupation. That was mainly the consequence of the cessation of economic development and the spread of urban civilization by the 1st century CE in western Eurasia.
 
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Guaporense

Ad Honorem
Mar 2011
5,047
Brazil
Well, if Rome would have taken all of Germania, and if the Legions were able to recruit from Germania extensively, and if the German troops in the Legions would have remained loyal to Rome....

Then that does change things considerably. Those ifs.

For, we might have seen retiring Germanic legionaries being given lands in Britannia upon retirement. Also, we might have seen pacified Germanic tribes being sent to Britannia to tame the unruly ones on those Islands. And so, the Anglo Saxon-Germanic invasion/migration to Britannia thing might have went on as scheduled anyway.

The couple of differences might have seen Rome better able to withstand Hunic incursions, and of course, the Eagle of Rome standing strong over Ireland. Germanic troops would have brought the standard to that place pretty quickly. It is just too fertile and lush not to conquer. Not if one is Rome, and the legions full of Germanic troops and the borders of the Empire secure and strongly guarded. Why not turn East, and finish with Ireland?

Actually, upon thinking about it, we might see a Germanification of the Roman Empire. Perhaps the capitol moved to Trier, and more and more Germanic culture included in everyday Roman things. And so, probably no sacking of Rome in 410 AD. No fall of Rome at all.

And so, we might have, by the late 700s, seen a Germanic Emperor seated over the head of a "Holy Roman Empire" after all.

He might even have called himself...Charlemagne?

But history has always hinged on those rascally ifs, hasnt it?
Northern Europe as a desert at the time in terms of taxable income and civilization. The Romans conquered the lands that were civilized or were becoming civilized, as these lands could pay taxes and serve Rome.

Northern Europe, Germany, Ireland, etc, were insignificant next to the centers of civilization in Italy, Egypt, Syria, North Africa, Greece and Asia Minor. These were the rich parts of the Roman Empire, these lands constituted the civilized world, northern europe was a poorly populated barbarian wasteland by comparison.

The fact is that 90% of the population of the Roman Empire lived below the alps. The roman Empire was a Mediterranean Empire.

Take for instance the comparison on the population levels in the 1st century:

Italy - 14,000,000
Germania - 3,000,000
Britain - 800,000

The population density of Italy was at least 10 times greater than in northern Europe.

More data on population levels:

Roman Empire: estimates vary from 60-100 million, most accepted figure, 70 million

Population of European territories outside Roman control inside modern state borders:

Denmark - 180,000
Netherlands - 200,000
Norway - 100,000
Sweden - 200,000
Finland - 20,000
Germany - 3,000,000
Poland - 900,000

total: 4.6 million, or about 6.5% of the population Roman Empire on the most accepted figure for Roman population.

This small population was also much poorer than the population inside the borders of the Roman Empire, which had more income to tax.

Sources for population figures:
Italy - Elio Los Cascio, Quantifying the Roman Economy, page 103
Roman Empire - Ober, Wealthy Hellas
Europe outside Roman control - Maddison, Contours of the World Economy, page 391

If the Romans conquered Germania they would have to maintain a few more legions than historically while tax revenues would have continued to be the same, as result the Empire would become weaker financially and that would not be good for the Empire in the long run. The territories under Roman rule in 60 CE were the best configuration of territories for Rome to rule, as any other territorial acquisition would have worsened the fiscal situation of the Empire.

The Roman Empire didn't collapse because of barbarian invasions, the barbarian invasions occurred because of the collapse: as the Classical civilization collapsed during the 4th and 5th centuries, specially in western europe, the institutions that depended on the existence of this civilization, i.e. the Roman State, lost their foundations and the territories of the Western Roman Empire were replaced by a collection of independent kingdoms that emerged from the corpse of Classical civilization.

One factor on the collapse of the western roman empire was the collapse in trade in western mediterranean, as trade collapsed the territories of the Roman Empire lost their economic connection to the once unified Roman economic system and instead regressed to a less developed state, as result information networks became tinner and less robust throughout the territories of the Empire and hence it became progressively more difficult to rule the territories of the Empire, so it eventually collapsed.

The Eastern part of the Roman Empire lasted longer because it declined less in economic terms and it was always the richest and most developed part of the Roman Empire, the Greek east, was the center of civilization in the mediterranean, as the vast majority of the authors from the roman period came from the eastern half of the empire or from Italy. Hence, only Italy and North Africa were as developed as the eastern parts of the empire.

Northern Gaul, the Balkans and Britain were considered semi-barbarian lands and served more as a buffer for the civilized lands of the mediterranean agaisnt the northern barbarians.
 
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