Germania inferior
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Germania inferior
Germania inferior

Conquest and defeat
Julius Caesar was the first Roman general to invade the Low Countries. In the summer of 57 BCE, he defeated the Nervians (text) and -proceeding along an ancient road- the Aduatuci in the valley of the Meuse (more), and in the spring of 55, he repelled the Usipetes and Tencteri, two tribes that had invaded the region (text). A couple of months later, he bridged the Rhine and invaded the country near the river Ruhr. One lasting result was a coalition with the Ubians, a tribe on the east bank of the Rhine.

Everything seemed under control, but in the winter of 54/53, there was a setback, when king Ambiorix of the Eburones was able to annihilate a Roman legion. Caesar's rapid reaction was extremely violent: within 300 days, the Eburones were exterminated (text). Ambiorix' allies, the Menapians, were hunted down. Their 7,000 warriors were no match for the 18,000 legionaries. After these actions, the Meuse-Rhine area was as quiet as a graveyard.

After this war, the Low Countries disappear from our sources, except for a brief remark by Varro, who tells that there are no olive trees and vines along the Lower Rhine, and describes how the land is marled and how salt is extracted from burned wood (On agriculture 1.7.8). [...]

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2014 Jun 14 05:41
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Kat (14-06-2014)

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