Collections: Logistics, How Did They Do It, Part III: On the Move

This is the third part of a three part (I, II, III) look at some of the practical concerns of managing pre-industrial logistics. In our last post, we outlined what 'foraging' actually entailed - how armies got supplies both from friendly populations but also from neutral or hostile populations. In particular, we focused on the … Continue reading Collections: Logistics, How Did They Do It, Part III: On the Move

Collections: Logistics, How Did They Do It, Part II: Foraging

This is the second part of a three part (I, II, III) look at some of the practical concerns of managing pre-industrial logistics. In our last post we outlined the members of our 'campaign community,' including soldiers but also non-combatants and animals (both war- and draft-); they required massive amounts of supplies, particularly food but … Continue reading Collections: Logistics, How Did They Do It, Part II: Foraging

Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part IIIc: Morale and Cohesion

This is the conclusion of the third part of our series (I, II, IIIa, IIIb, IIIc) looking at the role of the general in commanding pre-gunpowder armies in battle. Last time we looked at how junior officers, when empowered to act independently, could give armies a degree of flexibility and reactiveness on the battlefield but … Continue reading Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part IIIc: Morale and Cohesion

Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part IIIb: Officers

This is the continuation of the third part of our three(ish) part (I, II, IIIa, IIIb, IIIc) series looking at the role of the general in commanding pre-gunpowder armies in battle. Last time we looked at how an army's discipline could limit or expand the options available to its general: drill creating synchronized discipline could … Continue reading Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part IIIb: Officers

Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part IIIa: Discipline

This is the third(ish) part of our three(ish)-part (I, II, IIIa, IIIb, IIIc) look at the role of the general in the command of pre-modern armies, particularly in the context of a pitched battle. Last time, we looked at the limits on the ability of the general to communicate his orders to his army. While … Continue reading Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part IIIa: Discipline

Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part I: Reports

This week we're going to start a three-part (I, II, IIIa, IIIb, IIIc) look at the role of the pre-modern general or army commander, particularly in the context of a pitched battle. This is of course a vast topic, but we are going to focus not on tactical or strategic questions but on a lot … Continue reading Collections: Total Generalship: Commanding Pre-Modern Armies, Part I: Reports

Collections: Ancient ‘Tanks’? Chariots, Scythed Chariots and Carroballistae

Building on last week's post on tanks and a few of the comments there, this week I wanted to talk about the ancient (and medieval) weapon-systems often analogized to tanks and the degree to which they had a role similar to tanks. I have lost count of how many times I have seen in this … Continue reading Collections: Ancient ‘Tanks’? Chariots, Scythed Chariots and Carroballistae

Collections: Expeditions: Rome and the Perils of Verisimilitude

This week we're going to take a long look at Expeditions: Rome, a turn-based tactics RPG by developer Logic Artists, set in the first century BC Late Roman Republic. In particular, we're going to look at how the game both constructs and uses its historical setting. This is a particularly important topic to discuss because … Continue reading Collections: Expeditions: Rome and the Perils of Verisimilitude

Collections: The Roman Dictatorship: How Did It Work? Did It Work?

This week, we're taking a break from the modern world to tackle the 'runner up' question from the first ACOUP Senate poll: How did the Roman dictatorship work and was it effective? This is one of those questions that seems very simple but isn't. After all, what most people know about the Roman dictatorship is … Continue reading Collections: The Roman Dictatorship: How Did It Work? Did It Work?

Collections: Rome: Decline and Fall? Part III: Things

This is the third and final part (I, II) of our series tackling the complicated and still debated question of 'how bad was the fall of Rome (in the West)?' In our first part, we looked at the question through the prism of 'words' - language, culture, religion and literature. There we found a lot … Continue reading Collections: Rome: Decline and Fall? Part III: Things