Join Roman Army?


Can you hear me now?
If I was in Rome during JULIUS CAESAR's rule. I like to join army for Rome but how to join them?
not sure how you joined but if you served for so many years (20) after that time you and your family would be granted roman citizenship thats how they got a lot of forigners in the legions.
There basically were three types of recruitment back then:

1) volunteering, like it is in the Western world today
2) hereditary recruitment
3) fiscal recruitment

Of course it was always possible to call the draft in particularly needy times.

Voluntary recruitment was always possible. Both Roman citizens and Barbarians could enlist, they just had to be free men.
Categories of people who COULD NOT enlist were: Criminals, Cooks, Bakers, Bartenders and other jobs that were considered humiliating (according to the Codex Theodosianus VII.13.8 (380).
There was a form of hereditary recruitment, according to which the soldiers' sons had to enlist as well. This came into effect with a law passed by Constantine in 326 a.D. (Codex Theodosianus VII.22.8)) A lot of soldiers' son would maim themselves in order to dodge service.
Since the two above mentioned types were not sufficient, in the year 352 a.D. a new type was introducted: Fiscal recruitment. In short, if a wealthy land-owner or a rich man could not afford to pay all of his taxes to the government, he could then pick some of his peasants and pay "in recruits". Of course they always picked the weakest guys so this system never proved too effective for the quality of the army.

Another important way of recruitment was the recruitment of the Foederates. What were they? Mercenaries. They would still fight under their Barbarian chiefs but were in fact mercenaries who fought for Rome.

Hope it was useful, Fox.
It was usefull to any who has an interest in Rome!

But i was thinking..during the times before 300 ad, when it was like 200 BC and during the time of Gaius Julius and Pompey...was the recruitment the same as u have mentioned? and are there any more efficent way of recruiting? like the recruitment of the Foederates was not efficient, u know what I mean?

merci amigo 8)

Recruitment for any Legionary formation at any time during the empires existence was en masse. Men of applicable age presented themselves at the alotted time in the alotted place (usually amphitheatres or permanent garrisson structure) and were then and there sworn into the service of the empire. Because of the rigid nature of service periods a Legion would be refounded every 16 (later 20) years and the the peoples of the areas responsible for providing the recruits would have plenty of advance warning about when and where the recruiting would take place.A legion would serve for its alotted time period (barring disbandment, destruction or other wise) and the veterans would then be repatriated to their homelands or settled in areas newly conquered (to boost the indegenous populace with Roman citizens who were armed and fully capable of defending themselves). As was often the case, ex-soldiers would frequently reenlist in their legion and would often go on to serve for their entire lives, there is a record of one Centurion of the 3rd Augusta dying in harness ('In harness' meaning under arms, derived from the leather weapon harness used to carry the Gladius and other weapons.) at the age of 66

Legions also had distinct recruiting grounds, Gaius Julius Caeser's famous Legio X recruited from the Roman province of Pater Espana (Father Spain) up until the 2nd century AD when they switched to Syria (A matter of expediency, the Legion had been stationed there for decades).
Its important to note what time period we are taking about. The poster said the era of Julius Ceasar that was before the reforms of Marius Drelius (Spell) which meant that to serve in the Roman army you had to be a land owner and have a hertitary title.
mmarsh said:
Its important to note what time period we are taking about. The poster said the era of Julius Ceasar that was before the reforms of Marius Drelius (Spell) which meant that to serve in the Roman army you had to be a land owner and have a hertitary title.

Dont you mean Gaius Marius. He made reforms to the Roman army
The Roman Army

During the republic and the principate the roman army was different from any other army at the time. During battle it was divided into 4 lines: the Velites, the Hastati, the Principes and the Triarii. The Velites were the first line and they were the poorest soldiers armed with only javelins and almost no armor. They were used as skirmishers until the enemy advanced. They then retreated behind roman lines and the Hastati advanced. The Hastati were the young and eager men who fought first. If they were pushed back they retreated and came back with the Principes. This worked becouse most of rome's enemies relied on keeping the front lines fighting until they either won or retreated. The Hastati could retreat, catch their breath and their morale would rise since they were coming back with their friends. The Principes were the men in their prime, who have fought some battles and had some experience. If the enemy was strong and the Principes/Hasati could not rout them, the triarii would enter battle. The Triarii were the elite veterans and a popular roman phrase "things have come to the triarii" meant something bad was happening.
Right before the empire a guy named gaius marius made radical reforms to the army where the lines were combined and you no longer paid for the weapons and armor. Now a legionary cohort could preform the testudo formation.Another roman tactics was to soften the enemy up by throwing javelins when they were in front of the enemy. Sometimes these javelins would go through the enemy's shield. If not they would stick in the shield, making it useless. Archers and some of the cavalry were non-roman auxiliaries. As for the navy, the romans preferred boarding to ramming.