Cantabrian Wars




 
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April 6th, 2005  
Corocotta
 
 

Topic: Cantabrian Wars


I come from Cantabria, in northern Spain. This territory has a lot of history,concerning to the Roman Empire era, the conquest of Hispania was a hazardous one. The final chapter was the conquest of the northern part where lived Cantabrians and Asturians peoples. It was a war of 13 years (29-16 B.C)

Silio Italico in his Punica narrate the fighting against the gigant Laro, the Cantabrian leader, and the brother of Scipio.

The Cantabrians´ army were less in number, most of them light infantrymen, and known the roman´s tactics so they avoided pitched battles and frontal asssaults so they used skirmishing and guerrila warfare harassing the romans with ambushes, forcing Augusto to camp. The chieftain Corocotta (“Old Warrior”) presented himself to Augusto to require the reward (250.000 sexterci) that Augusto had put for his head; Augusto paid and let him go free. Antistio advanced into Cantabria and defeated the Cantabrians in a battle in a city, today not found, called Bergidum, Bergida, Uellica o Attica, depending on the classic authors. The survivors took refuge in Vindio mountain in where the Cantabrians said that “the waves of the ocean arrives before to this mountain than the romans´ arms”: romans sieged them and winter and hungry killed the warriors.


In 19 B.C., the Cantabrians who had been enslaved, killed their masters, returned to Cantabria and rose the inhabitants again; fortified some oppidum and attacked the roman´s garrisons, getting several victories like the one over the Legio I Augusta, capturing some standards eventhough the aquila. To be defeated by a people few in number became a shame to the Legion so it was punished by Agrippa and lost the title “Augusta”. It was hard but Agripa recovered the moral of his troops and defeated the Cantabrians with a great cost of losses. Then become the genicide: all the men, who were able of using weapons, that were captured were inmediatly crucified. Strabo wrote some cruel episodes: a group of prisoners that were going to be crucified sang their war cries until they died; a young prisoner threw himself into a bonfire when his guards were drunk; the mothers killed their children before suiciding themselves; an armed child killed his captured family (his father ordered him). Agrippa returned to Rome the lost standards and rejected to celebrate his triumph.

Three years later, in 16 B.C., the Cantabrians rose again for the last time against Rome. In Tiberian´s armies, the Cantabrians fought already as auxiliares. Thre are several tombstones of Cantabrians all around the Roman Empire. In IV-V centuries the Cantabrians regained his freedom but lost it again in VI century against the visigoth king Leovigildo after several risings. In VIII they formed the latest stand agains the arab invasion of Hispania and finally adopted the christianism and the latin as their language.

The celtic simbol above is the simbol of my ancestors.
April 6th, 2005  
WarMachine
 
 
Interesting history of your people. I never understood why they fail to mention at least one roman battle in the history books anymore. All they talk about is the influence they had later on in europe. Any info on where i could get more information on obscure areas like this during the empire?
April 6th, 2005  
godofthunder9010
 
 
Many out there fail to realize there virtually all of Western Europe was Celtic anciently. Rome and Carthage and others had to conquer and/or displace the ancient Celtic peoples before they ever were able to come into existence as the nations they are today. Today, only Ireland is controlled by the Celts, but the entire continent is covered with Celtic peoples. Many are mixed. Most do not remember their Celtic heritage and haven't a clue that it is part of their ancestry.

Its an interesting account staurofilakes. Not nearly as well document nor as told as the account of Julius Caesar's conquest of the Celts in modern France, under Vercengetorix. The great tragedy, in my estimation, is that the Celts were absolutely lousy at uniting for a common cause until it was already too late.
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April 6th, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
And even many of those who do know something about the ancient Celts have no idea that they stated out in Asia Minor.
April 7th, 2005  
godofthunder9010
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charge_7
And even many of those who do know something about the ancient Celts have no idea that they stated out in Asia Minor.
Oh, you can have a merry debate over that with some experts apparently. There are a number of theories of their origin but it had to have been from South-Central Asia neighborhood because their spoken language(s) is distinctly IndoEuropean in origin.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Celts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
The origins and geographical distribution of the Celt

The Celtic language family is a branch of the larger Indo-European family, which leads some scholars to a hypothesis that the original speakers of the Celtic proto-language may have arisen in the Pontic-Caspian steppes (see Kurgan). However, as the Celts enter history from around 600 BC, they are already split into several languages groups, and spread over much of Central Europe, the Iberian peninsula, and the British Isles.

Some scholars think that the Urnfield culture represents an origin for the Celts as a distinct cultural branch of the Indo-European family. This culture was preeminent in central Europe during the late Bronze Age, from ca. 1200 BC until 700 BC. The period saw a dramatic increase in population in the region, probably due to innovations in technology and agricultural practices. The spread of iron-working led to the development of the Hallstatt culture directly from the Urnfield (c. 700 to 500 BC). Proto-Celtic, the latest common ancestor of all known Celtic languages, is thought to have been spoken at the time of the late Urnfield or early Hallstatt cultures, in the early 1st millennium BC.
April 7th, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
As I remember the Celt stories themselves mention their origin place in terms that could only have been Asia Minor. I'll have to do some checking in my library to be sure though. There were 7 Celtic nations originally, though most people only think of three (Ireland, Scotland, Wales).
April 7th, 2005  
Corocotta
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by WarMachine
Interesting history of your people. I never understood why they fail to mention at least one roman battle in the history books anymore. All they talk about is the influence they had later on in europe. Any info on where i could get more information on obscure areas like this during the empire?
Concerning the Cantabrians Wars, the best book ever wrotten is from Adolf Schulten (1870 – 1960), in his book “The Cántabrians and Asturians and their war with Rome”

You will also find info in the text of the clasicc historisicians such us Plinio, Estrabon, Dión Casio (56, 43, 3): , but the last one is the best.

If you do a search in the web you will also find more info and references that you might be interested in.






Quote:
The great tragedy, in my estimation, is that the Celts were absolutely lousy at uniting for a common cause until it was already too late.
Many of the tribes got unite, but the enemy was to strong.

Quote:
As I remember the Celt stories themselves mention their origin place in terms that could only have been Asia Minor. I'll have to do some checking in my library to be sure though. There were 7 Celtic nations originally, though most people only think of three (Ireland, Scotland, Wales).
The celtics invaded europe during the Iron Era, In 600 BC, they han an indo-european origin and they introduced in europe "La Tené" culture, based in the use of iron to make tools.
The name celtic comes fron the greek "Keltoi"

WarMachine:

I founded a great page where you can check all the original texts of Cassius Dio on LacusCurtius in english, if you read book (56, 43, 3) you will read about Corocotta.

http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/..._Dio/home.html
April 25th, 2005  
melkor the first
 

Topic: Cassius Dio


Thanks for the link. I've read some of this work and seen him refenced before but could never find a copy for myself(wee, still haven't...). Very interesting thread and will look for more of your posts as all have been interesting. Best
April 26th, 2005  
Corocotta
 
 

Topic: Re: Cassius Dio


Quote:
Originally Posted by melkor the first
Thanks for the link. I've read some of this work and seen him refenced before but could never find a copy for myself(wee, still haven't...). Very interesting thread and will look for more of your posts as all have been interesting. Best
Thanks, you are welcome!!