The Legions of Rome: Equipment
Equipment, Weaponry, and Structure of the Legions

Equipment and Weapons

Each Legionairre was equipped with a standard set of equipment known as a kit. The kit contained a full set of armor, including bracers, greaves, boots, gauntlets, a chestplate, a helmet, and a shield. It also contained three to four javelins called pila, which had heavy iron heads, along with a dagger and a sword called a gladius. Included were tools and materials for sharpening weapons and polishing armor, and cleaning all of the equipment, usually along with a day's rations. Also included were shovels, which the legionairres would use to set up their fortified camp each night. In total, a standard kit weighed about 240 pounds or more, and was carried constantly. The penalties were severe for not carrying the kit or taking care of it, sometimes ending in execution.

Each Legion contianed 4800 Legionairres, led by a Legate. At the base of the Legion were contuberniae, 8 man squads that formed the roots of the Legions. From there, sets of five contuberniae, 40 men, were led by tesserariae, or watch officers. Two tesserarii were then combined to form a century of 80 men led by a centurion. Six centuries formed a cohort of 480 men, led by a tribune, and ten cohorts formed a Legion. Each Legion also had a Quartermaster, a Senior Centurion, engineers, cooks, the Legate's staff, and other miscellaneous personnel. Totalled, each Legion had 4800 fighting men, but often the camps would hold 5500 people when all the necessary personnel and the wanderers the Legions picked up were accounted for.

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