Remains of around 150,000 Roman era refugees found the Netherlands

Dec 2015
Here's a bit more information in English:
The massacre of the Usipetes and Tencteri - Ancient Warfare - Karwansaray Publishers

To clarify: the archeological findings are not new. The remains of whatever massacre took place there have been uncovered over the past few decades. Recent research based on radiocarbon dating has established that the victims were not locals - they came from East of the Rhine - and it links them to the right period of time. The location more or less corresponds with Caesar's writings, as do the remains of so many men, women and children with wounds inflicted by (Roman) weapons.

Yes, indeed - bones are constantly being extracted from the ground in that area all the time for the last 30 years. So the findings are not new (or at least not all of them), but scientists have managed to link them with that historical event from 55 BC only recently.
Mar 2014
Two tribes, on similar level of development as Iron Age Germanics, could easily number so many people
Yes, but could not march them cohesively enough that they're all on the same battlefield. Armies needed food; they needed to forage for it. There would be nowhere near enough food for an army of a hundred and fifty thousand - with hundreds of thousands of camp followers and animals too, I presume? - to be able to eat.

The logistics of barbarian migrations is described in the account of the migration of the Helvetii and their allies
It's not the logistics of migrations (which, unlike that of armies of that size, can make sense), but the logistics of massacring that many people. As said, even modern technology struggles. Ancient technology and infrastructure would have to miraculously withstand pressures well beyond breaking-point, as this was in the field (specifically, a field) not an enclosed area like a city.
Dec 2015
Dec 2015
Yes. And the map shows that it was taking place over a rather large area (for example German camp was located quite a large distance from the site of the final massacre - the Romans overran the enemy camp, and undoubtedly many people died already there, but later the Romans continued to push them towards the confluence of rivers - where the final slaughter took place as they had nowhere else to retreat to).


Ad Honorem
Nov 2011
Ohio, USA
I highly doubt a massacre of 150,000. Even ignoring the population question, the logistics would be tricky for a 21st century organisation with motor vehicles, guns, and satellites to pull off. A Roman general?

EDIT: Oh, it was a battle (according to the Romans, anyway). That makes me doubt the figure even more.
Ha, that was still only a third as many as Caesar himself claimed to have killed!
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