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Classical Olbia and the Scythian WorldFrom the Sixth Century BC to the Second Century AD$
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David Braund and S D Kryzhitskiy

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264041

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264041.001.0001

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Roman Military Units in Olbia

Roman Military Units in Olbia

(p.173) Roman Military Units in Olbia
Classical Olbia and the Scythian World


British Academy

Around the middle of the first century, Olbia was under siege from the Getae. It was either destroyed or abandoned shortly before its destruction. It was only inhabited at the turn of the first century AD. It is assumed that Roman interest over Olbia only started after the middle of the first century. This chapter discusses the existence of Roman military units in Olbia during the years AD 106–111. These military units were believed to be present in Olbia to protect the city from barbarian intrusion. This assumption is established by the existence of inscribed grave-monuments and epitaphs belonging to Athenocles, and the Bosporans: indications of the attempts of the Rome to maintain its political strength and to defend the city from barbarians. Accordingly, after the collapse of the Olbian-Samartian alliance, the Roman Empire provided occasional military aid to Olbian during the reigns of Trajan and Hadrian. Other evidences that provide proof of the dependence of Olbia to the military aid given by the Roman military units are the presence of a Roman legionary garrison in Olbia including Thracian dedicatory reliefs.

Keywords:   Olbia, Getae, Roman interest, Roman military units, military units, inscribed grave-monuments, epitaphs, Athenocles, Bosporans, Olbian-Samartian alliance

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