Julius Caesar Sieges

606 Words3 Pages
The Neo-Assyrian Empire used earthen ramps, siege towers and battering rams in sieges; the Greeks and Alexander went further in creating destructive new engines known as artillery to further their sieges, and the Romans used every technique to perfection. That is to say, the Romans were not inventors, but they were superb engineers and disciplined, tough soldiers who fought against great odds and won, repeatedly. Julius Caesar and the Siege of Alesia, 52 B.C. The one main advancement the Romans brought to siege warfare came from Julius Caesar’s siege of the Gallic stronghold of Alesia. Arriving at Alesia, Caesar began the siege by directing his troops to build a fortified camp and then a wall ten miles long to circumnavigate the city. This wall is called a circumvallation. It would keep the Alesians in and cut off any supplies from the outside. The greatest threat to any besieging army was…show more content…
Or they might have to give up the siege altogether, depending on the strength of the allies. Julius Caesar didn’t do either of these; instead he had his army build another wall to surround the army outside the first wall, which invested the fortress of Alesia. The second wall—Caesar’s great innovation in siege warfare—was called a contravallation. When the Gallic army allied to Alesia arrived, they discovered they had to besiege the besiegers, Caesar’s army. The Romans successfully withstood the siege from the Gallic army. Alesia, bereft of food and supplies, began to starve. Finally, they surrendered. The Roman Onager While Roman engineers redesigned and perfected many of the Greek siege engines, they invented only one—the onager, a torsion-driven ballista with either a sling or a bucket that could hold heavy rocks for blasting away at city walls or gates. What drove this Roman innovation was the need for anti-fortification
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