|CONFLICTS AND BATTLES OF THE HUMANITY|
Celts in Italy
Celts in Greece
Celts in Spain
Celts towards British Islands
Celts in Gaul
Medium Bronze Age : between - 1500 and - 1200
Some indo-european populations, having only the language together, live in a zone which stretches from the east of France in Boheme, after a long migration westward.
Final Bronze Age : Urnfields culture : between - 1200 and - 900
After successive plagues, burial
is replaced by incineration, cinder is put in ballot boxes. This change
of burial is observable from central Europe to Ireland..Horsemen, with
long iron swords, appear in Austria at the beginning of the IXth
century, numerous strengthened surrounding walls, weak dimensions, are
dispersed and particularly, punctuate the North is from France.
A social group distinguishes itself by his rich burials near
strengthened establishments. They speak about
princely tombs. Swords shorten in VIIIth century and Celts
from the east of France migrate
Spain. In the South Esat from Great Britain, populations speak
celtic language, but it does not seem to have had big plagues there.
Trade relations are significant with Hallstatt's culture. On the site
of Heuneburg in Bade-Wurtenberg, was found
a fortification in crude brick, on a stone foundation, including square
bastions, group attains a wholly unaccustomed size for this period. It
shows the Greeksof Massalia's influence. The nobility uses
a wagon in 4 wheels to make war like Sumerian.
La Tene period,
2nd Iron age : between - 500 and - 200
This movement is born in the north of the zone of Hallstatt's
zone, the centre is in Rhenanie with two other sources: Marne and
Bohemia. This society shows an upper-class and military marked
character. Chariots appear, implicating a new tactics of battle. The
spread of this "civilization" is quick and replaces "Hallstattians" in
a undoubtedly fierce manner. There do not remain traces there, but
fortifications increase in Iron Age. Towards - 400, Celts occupy all
France except South Est. Territories under celtic control, are from
Romania to Ireland.
Celts in Italy
Towards - 600, start a wave of migrations towards Italy. These movements of populations southward, correspond to a deterioration of climate. As into the Greek's country, an internal reason causes the population' movements. A strong demographic expansion and the tradition of sacred spring *, causes the first military expeditions of celtic tribes who cross Alps settle in Major Lake territory where they coexist pacifiquement with etruscan people. Celts enter in History of the Mediterranean Sea's People by Golasecca's civilization. They found cities of Brescia, Come, Bergame and Milan. They are, a century later, well installed in the Plain of Po and encroach on etruscan territory. It is Cisalpine Gaul.
* sacred spring : ancient ritual according to which a born
generation in spring blessed had to leave for founding a community.
Celtic helmet of bronze (IIIrd century)
Ordered by a senon war leader, Brenn, 30 000 Celts, natives of
territories of Marne, Rhenanie and Bohemia, cross Alps by the
Switzerland and Austria and invest Plain of Po. Among these celtic
tribes, they find Insubres, Cenomans, Boians, Lingons,
Senons... Milan is taken towards - 396. They collide of
Etruscan people and towards - 391, Chiusi is besieged by Senons. Romans
do not carry to their assistance, but send three deputies in the
name of Senate, three Fabius, for to dissuade the Celts to press war.
But these envoys with fierce character, take weapon and dropp out of
their diplomatic mission. Hostilities are engaged and Romans advance
to meet Celts troops who are more numerous, about 60
000 men versus 40 000
Romans. Tribuns dispose army and extend the line to a maxumum, as Miltiade with Marathon made it. Reserve is put on rising ground. Brenn, is a prudent man and he fears a trap. Also it attacks this height in first and it is the panic among Romans who run away towards Veies. Victory of Allia is net and Roman's losses are heavy. The winners discover the almost empty City, plunder it and burn it. The garrison resists in the citadel of Capitol, but famine overcomes this defence. So Rome must deliver an important tribute to hid winners, "VAE VICTIS". The Celts spread in Italy towards Pouilles. Senons settle on the Adriatic coast, up to Ancone area, Lingons in the delta of Po, Insubres in actual Lombardy, Cenomans is around Brescia, Boians towards Bologna. Etruscan confederation is considerably weakened.
New attacks against Rome come forward - 361, -367, - 360, to break on the new surrounding wall which are built by the dictator Camille. In - 350, Celts encamp on albains mounts. Celts continue going down in the Tiber valley and in Apuly. In - 331, a peace treaty is concluded between Rome and Senons and peace is established provisionally. At the beginning of IIIth century, Celts participate in 3rd samnite war, in a vast alliance whith Samnites, Etruscans, Ombrians and Gallics. In - 298, an army composed of Samnites and Gallics crushes a Roman army ordered by Lucius Cornelius Scipio Barbatus in Camerinum in Ombria, then it collides with consuls Quintus Fabius and Publius Decius Mus's armies. It is battle of Sentinum.
It begins by a battle of cavalry where, on the left wing, Decius
and her roman horsemen dominate the Gallic horsemen, but the Celtic
chariots' noise scares legionnaires, plant Roman cavalry and Decius'
army puts off. On the right wing, Fabius by using at best
reservations, forces back Samnites in their camp. Then he attacks
cheerful Gallics of their win and crushes them. It is a heavy defeat
for Gallics as Samnites. But conflict goes on.
Set-backs are gathering faced versus Roman legionnaires, in
spite of new celtic contingents from the North of Alps. The leader of
the Senons, forward - 285, forms an alliance with Etruscans and crushes
Roman army under the walls of city of Arretium. Riposte of Rome is
strict. Led by the consul Dolabella, legions devastate the country of
Senons and sell women and prisoner children as slaves. The Romans form
an alliance with Cenomans against Boians and Insubres who resist ever
and are conquered with their allies, Gesates and Taurisques, by two
Roman armies who encircle them, in the battle of Telamon, forward 225,
in Etrury. On about 50 000 infantrymen and 20 000 Celtic horsemen, 10
000 are prisoners and 40 000 persons killed! A part of Boïans
leaves again northward, they resist efficiently to Cimbres and Teutonic
in IIth century. It is the turn of Insubres. Their capital, Mediolanum
is taken after a seat. The Celts submit up to Hannibal's arrival
forward - 218. They participate as Carthaginians' allies in battles of
the 2nd Punic war and particularly in Cannes' battle forward - 216 and
leave there numerous died. The Celts are definitely conquered in - 191.
Towards East, a movement of population so powerful as those who
invested North Italy, starts in Vth century, for control of amber road.
Decisive expedition takes place in IVth century, on the same
principle of the sacred spring. Coming from Black Forest and
following up Danube's banks, especially the left, they are stopped by
illyrian people : Antariates. These wars last fifty years and Celts,
having subjected them, towards - 310, settle on their place. Macedonian
empire stands in their way and Celts go back up towards Transylvania.
They serve as mercenaries for Denys of Syracuse or Philippe II of
Macedonia and, towards - 335, they meet Alexander the Great who
concludes a friendship's treaty with them. Celts melt the
"principality" of Scordisques and Singidunum which will become
Belgrade. At the beginning of 3rd century, Celts throw an
offensive towards the Macedonia which knows difficulties then. A
try of penetration in Thrace is a failure in - 298. Big offensive
against the Macedonia starts - there 280.
Celtic "army corps", directed by Bolgios, meet, in - 279,
army of Ptolemee Keraunos and wins by the enormous
way, then leaves. The Macedonian king is killed during battle. Another
Brenn, leader of Tectosages, recruits soldiers among indigenous people,
including Illyrians for the conquest of
Greece. Celts cross the river Sperchios from which bridges were cut,
by means of gondolas fabricated with their bucklers. The city of
Heraclee is besieged and taken. An army of the united
Greek cities is beaten on the way of Thermopyles. But passages are
by a contingent of Etolians, the Celtic advance is stopped. Doubt
becomes established among Celts. Brenn sends two lieutenants to
devastate Etolie, Etolians leaves their positions to come home. With 40
000 soldiers, Brenn uses the mist to surprise Phoceans who keep
passage and are exterminated. Delphes' road is free and Celts
ransack everything on their passage. Brenn wastes time for gathering
his warlike drunks and motivating them by promise of a
wonderful treasure. Greeks use it to gather around Delphes and
strengthen their positions, they are about 4 000. The city resists to
the attacks of Celts for a long time. Battle is persevered,
finally, when Celts are going to enter the sacred temple, earth
trembles, lightning knocks, a snowstorm starts, a rain of rocks
stuns the combatants and crevasses open under the feet of Celts who
escape the anger of the Gods. Next night, Celts are grabbed by a
panic such as they kill each other and the return towards
Heraclee is hard under the harassment of Greeks.
Losses are heavy, Brenn feels responsible for this failure and having
transmitted its powers in Akichorios, he kills himself. (This version
fabled, another version says to us that Celts brought back treasure
among Tectosages, near Toulouse. But treasure seems to have been
by Phocidians during the Sacred War.) the Celts are forced back
in any case northward.
The Celts driven by Komontorios, beat Thrace but are conquered
by Antigone Gonatas and found a kingdom from which the capital is
Towards - 278, 20 000 of them pass in Asia, driven by a leader named
Molistomos and, on rafts which they construct on place, cross
Hellespont with women, horses, chars and supply. They are called by
king of Bithynie, Nicomede the 1st, to struggle against his brother. To
for their action, the king their offer oriental Phrygia, facing Syria
of Antiochos. They are composed of 3 peoples, Tolistoboges on the West,
Trocme at the east of Halys and Tectosages around Ancyre. They settled
efficiently, in harmony with indigenous. Their masters are called
tetrarchs, because there are 4 leaders in every people. But
they do not receive reinforcements anymore and take back their
expeditions of looting towards rich cities of the coast. Towards - 270,
Antiochos Soter pushes them back with elephants. They are
forced to settled on the Phrygien shelf. Raids continue and in -
240, Attale the 1st, king of Pergame takes against them several wins
which stop their expansion. They live around Ancyre, current
consequently. They became Galates, and are subjected to a progressive
hellenisation, but they keep their language until to Roman
conquest. They fight in IInd century, as auxiliary of Antiochos
III and are conquered by the Roman consul Manlius Vulso in 189. They
collide with Eumene IInd, new king of Pergame in - 182 and in -
160 and at the time of the August emperor, Galatie becomes Roman, in -
Another troops of Celts, survivor of defeat against Antigone,
are engaged as mercenaries by pharaoh Ptolemy IInd, in
war against Magas de Cyrene. They are not paid because they were
not in battle against Magas. They rebel against pharaoh and want to
take over royal treasure. They are surrounded on an island and
Ptolemy IInd let them of hunger die.
Celts in Spain
By small groups, Celts, settled in Aquitaine in VIth
century, enter in the North and the West of Iberia. They occupy
three regions in the North, on the West as well as in the centre of the
peninsula, that is the two thirds. They construct castros, kind of
strengthened houses. Relations with the inhabitants, Iberians, are
harmonious and in IIIrd century, fusion of celtiberic people ends on
the fringe of Mediterranean world.
Towards - 237, Hamilcar Barca begins the conquest of Spain with
mercenaries and brings vast lands in the South from Spain and rich
silver mines in Carthage. Hannibal, during the second
Punic War, attacks Sagonte, what is a casus belli for Romans and
kills many Celts. A Roman army ordered by Publius Cornelius Scipio
nicknamed as his parent, Africanus, fights the Carthaginians, takes
Carthagene in - 209 and them hunt of Iberia.
Romans stretch since the Mediterranean coast, inwards and
Celtiberic peoples defends themselves very vigorously against them by
practicing a kind of guerilla. Very hard battles are led from - 181, to
control the big commercial roads. The first celtiberic war ends in -
174. The second war from -154 to - 152, is concluded by
Marcellus. Celtiberic peoples, led by Magaravicus, takes back war
against Rome and beat general Mancinus in - 137. Rome sends the
victor of Carthage, Scipio Emilianus who rids Roman camp of all
luxury in which soldiers lived and encircle the city with
circonvallations. Celtiberic peoples resist up to the catch of Numance
in - 133 and kill themselves. Roman presence is real on Mediterranean
coast and valleys of Ebro and Guadalquivir. During this time,
Lusitania, current Portugal), inhabited with Celts, resists, under
leadership of Viriathe, ten years to Roman invasion.
Battersea shield (IInd -Ist century)
found in the Thames
Celts towards British Islands
From VIIIth century, Celts, from Gaul, cross the English Channel and penetrate into the British Islands. At the time of Tene, Belgians follows this itinerary and settle in the south of England. It is again immigrants' successive waves which progressively dominate the country. War is quasi permanent between these Celtic populations and in the north, in Scotland, in Orcades and in the Shetland, hundreds of little strongholds or stony towers are built and used during the period of Tene.
From Julius Caesar, Roman invasions begin, for
the Britons to take punished for their help towards Gauls. But the
trade of luxury faciltates rapprochement of British kings and Romans.
It is the aggressive policy of Cunobelinos' sons towards
the Romans which provides emperor Claude to use that as the pretext for
invade Brittany in 43. The South East of island ist quickly conquered.
Every rebellion, Silures, Icenes with their queen Boudicca, and
Brigantes induces moving of border towards Solway Firth.
It is Agricola who, between 78 and 83, ends conquest, beats
Caledonians in Mons Graupius and fixes the border on the Highlands'
line. Then he leaves for Rome and offensive stops. This line
is impossible to defend. The Romans go back behind Solway
Celts of Ireland do not know Roman invasions and maintain trade relations with them. In IVth century, the weakness of the Roman garrisons encourage them to throw incursions in Brittany to take slaves and booty there.
Celts in Gaul
The Celts inflitrate through in central Gaul forwards VIIth century and are numerous in Burgundy, Lorraine and Jura. They occupy Armorica in Ve century and follow Rhone valley by forcing back in mountains hallstattians Celts' tribes and Ligures. But there is no cohesion between Celtic peoples. The most powerful peoples.are in central Gaul. Towards - 400, Ambigat, the "king" of the Bituriges, seems to exercise a hegemony over the whole Gaul. He would have made responsible his two nephews Bellovese and Sigovese for taking the most possible of soldiers with them to conquer the lands that their would indicate the Gods (Italy and Greece). It is those people on the march, with his chars containing fowl, who lead at the anxious Roman's of " Galli! ", from latin gallina, the hen. The Romans will call Celts consequently: Galli, Gauls.
In IIIth century, Celts are pushed back beyond Rhine by
newcomers, Germanic peoples, from Scandinavia. The Belgians invade Gaul
and settle in its northern part. It is Arvernes' turn to assure
in Gaul. Joint
pressure of Romans
and Germanic peoples provokes buildings of oppida. The IIth century
begins with the last celtic invasion in Italy and ends by conquest of
Provincia (in the south of Gaul), by Romans called
by Massalia attacked by Salyens or Salluvii. Their oppidum of Entremont
In - 122, alliance between Rome and Eduens, allows, Domitius Ahenobarbus' legionnaries to beat Allobroges come to attack Eduens. In - 121, Allobroges lose a battle against consul Fabius Maximus, in the confluence of Rhine and Isere. Quintus Fabius Maximus beats arverne king Bituit, who comes to Allobroges' assistance. In first century, germanic tribes begin settle on the Left Bank of Rhine.
Eduens, imitating Romans, proclaim an aistocratic
republic controled by decurions, an assembly of local worthies, which
elect the vergobret, every year. They are copied by other peoples among
whom Arvernes which have lost their king. Eduens gives their
protection to all their neighbours. It is the most powerful people of
Gaul. Towards - 113, Cimbres and Teutonic people enter profoundly in
and perturb Celts gravely. They will be conquered by the Romans.
Towards - 60, Celtill, a nobleman Arverne ally himself Sequanes to fight Eduens. Allies call Arioviste, leader of the germanic tribe of Sueves, to their help, and together, are victorious. Arioviste claims lands, for price of his alliance. He settle its Sueves in country Eduen and Sequane. Celtill try to proclaim himself king of Arvernes. He is condemned par his a own brother Gobannitio and Gergovie's decurions and burned lively, according to tradition, in a wicker basket, publicly, in the face of his son Vercingetorix.
War according to Celts.
Tactics of battle have evolved for 5 centuries, but a constant stays: " anarchic rush ", kind of privileged battle. Previously, challenges causing single combats. War is accompanied with big noise, trumpet rings (carnyx), shouting, to destabilize ennemy.
Celts use war chariot with virtuosity, since period of Tene, take avantage of their mobility to cover the battlefield by throwing javelins. Then they jump in earth and fight as soldier. Light, the Celtic chariot has two wheels, noblemen use it habitually to fight as Mycenians. Charior disappear of the continent, from battlefields, but remain used by Bretons against Romans.
The horse holds an essential place in Celtic art of war.
Cavalry fights in the following way :
to every horseman am linked two equerries, also good horsemen. Horsemen go to battle while equerries stay behind.
When horseman falls of horse, the equerry gives him his.
When horseman is killed, the equerry mount his horse.
And lastly, when horseman is wounded, an equerry takes his place in battle and other comes with him in the camp.
This tactical unit is called trimarcisia.
Battles often oppose tribes between spring and summer.
Alliances are formed between neighbours. According to necessity, a
confederation can create oneself or a biturix (king of the world) be
Very clever at working iron, Celts mak long and flat
swords. The weapon has lengthened in the time, it exceeds one metre.
Warriors knock with the sharp side, the point of the sword is rounded.
This weapon is adapted to the battle of cavalry and requires space. But
shocks repeated against helmet, buckler or double-edged sword weakens
it. The sheath in bronze protects the sword
and is carried on the right-hand side. His dimensions are very definite
blunt the thread of sword and well corresponds to
mobile battle of Celts, opposed to static battle of his
Mediterranean adversaries. Warriors takes a spear and two javelins,
sometimes a sling. He is equipped with a bronze helmet or sometimes in
iron, with a wooden buckler reinforced by iron elements,
particularly central umbo, from IIIth century. This buckler is oval
or rectangular and measures one metre. It is capable to be flourished
at the end of arm to be used as an offensive weapon. More seldom,
Celtic warrior carries a coat of mail which is a Celtic
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