New research reveals that the so-called crack troops of Rome were in fact guilty of crimes against fashion
They have been the subject of innumerable romantic books and films, including the forthcoming epic, The Eagle of the Ninth, directed by Kevin Macdonald. But new evidence this week has revealed that life for a soldier in the Roman Ninth Legion had a more mundane side. A newly excavated site near Healam Bridge fort, North Yorkshire, a military outpost used by the Ninth, has shown soldiers there had their own industrial estate nearby to provide them with clothes, pottery and other equipment.
The Ninth was formed in 65BC and fought in Hispania and Gaul before taking part in Claudius's invasion of Britain in AD43. The legion then helped maintain the Roman empire's grip of Britain although it suffered a serious defeat during Boudicca's rebellion in AD61.
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