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Word Count: 1,108
The Roman army was an innovative and powerful force that stands out in history They were very advanced for their time and are considered by some to be the strongest military ever created They were highly effective for a number of reasons size organization tactics are what the Roman army relied on to conquer its enemies through tough battles and campaigns The roman army was very well organized for its era They arranged troops into legions which were a combination of five thousand men of differing experience and skill Each legion consisted of about eight cohorts A cohort was made up of around six hundred men each and those were broken down even further into maniples or groupings of around three hundred men each Lastly there were centurys that had roughly one hundred men At any one time a legion only had four thousand troops ready for battle The number one cohort of a legion was generally twice as big as the other cohorts and handled administrative and supply duties The standard legion was a mixture of different kinds of fighters Some carried only spears while others carried heavy armor shields and swords They were generally kept together according to their equipment The equites were the cavalry of the empire Some shot arrows from horseback others were armored and carried swords and some were merely messengers The hastati of the front line were the pick of the army They were well-trained young men and well armed with sword javelin and large shield or scutum Principes behind them were older men selected for their experience and maturity Perhaps the best equipped they were armed and armored like the hastati and known as heavy infantry The Triarii of the third line were well-armed veterans perhaps past their prime There was also a fourth line of soldiers known as the velites These came from the poorest class of citizens They were lightly armed with perhaps
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