n Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa - Did Centurions lead detachments of their legions in wartime?

Volume 47, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0065-1141
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It is generally believed that, in wartime, legionary detachments or 'vexillationes' were commanded exclusively by senatorial and later equestrian officers, whereas centurions were entrusted with detachments raised only for garrison duty or work-related tasks in peacetime. However, certain literary and epigraphic sources suggest that, even from the mid-first century AD, the usual leader of fighting-detachments of up to 500 legionaries was really the centurion.

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