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13 Apr 2008 -

LEGIO IX HISPANA "The Way We Were"

From the 1st Century AD.

Legio IX Hispana was deployed from Pannonia on the Danube, in the area around Siscia (Sisak) to Gaul in 42 in order to prepare for the invasion of Britannia in 43AD, under the command of Aulus Plautius during the reign of Claudius.

There is no mention of Legio IX Hispana's actions during the initial phase of the invasion of Britannia. Some scholars suggest that Hispana landed near Colchester, some miles to the north of the main invasion force at Richborough.

Legio IX Hispana was the primary eastern arm of the invasion force, driving north up the line of what is now Ermine Street towards Lindum (Lincoln). There are several marching camps and forts along the route that have provided some evidence for the Hispana.

The Hispana was stationed at a fort near Newton-On-Trent from 44 - 50AD. Then to Lindum (Lincoln) from 50 - 70AD. And then to Eburacum (York) from 71 - 120AD.

Boudicca

1uidboudicca3In 60AD Legio IX Hispana had the first honor of meeting Boudicca during her little excursion through the countryside of Britannia. Contrary to popular opinion the Hispana was not annihilated. Instead, a large force was sent south from Lindum to meet Boudicca's army. Legatus Petilius Cerialis managed to survive the first onslaught and escaped with his cavalry. We like to believe that the Hispana managed to hold Boudicca up for at least a day giving the rest of the units of the dispersed Legions an extra day or so to prepare and act. In all Legio IX Hispana lost at most 2000 milites gregarii which were later replaced with troops from the Rhine frontier.

On to Eburacum

In 71AD the Hispana was moved from Lindum (Lincoln) to Eburacum (York). The fortress of stone at Eburacum was built in 108AD by Legio IX Hispana.

Hadrian's Wall

Hadrian's Wall

Sometime during the reign of Hadrianus the Hispana participated in the construction of Hadrian's Wall, probably building a portion of the original turf rampart, but definitely stationed north of the Wall to protect the other Legions as they slugged and toted block, mortar, timber and dirt.

Hadrian's Wall

Into the Mists of Time

1uidlegionary_coldThere is some evidence placing the Hispana in the Nijemegen region around 122.

Some scholars place Legio IX Hispana in the Lower Rhine region during the Second Dacian War. There is also some evidence placing the Hispana in Judea during the Second Jewish War, 132 - 135AD. The last known post of Legio IX Hispana was in Cappadocia (Armenia) and that information is sketchy.

What We Know

The evidence for Legio IX Hispana is minimal at least for the "AD" period. She is mentioned in Tacitus. There is some physical archaeology, roof tiles in Nijemegen for example. There are a few funerary monuments. There is also evidence that she built practice fortification features near Cawthorne, England such as entrenchments, ballista platforms, turf walls and field ovens.

There is no evidence that any Roman Legion, let alone Legio IX Hispana, ever "disappeared" in what we now know as Scotland. In fact the archaeology suggests several periods of a serious Roman presence. The "disappearance" legend is probably related to a quick deployment to the Rhine in 122 and incomplete Victorian era research.

Why We Chose to Portray Legio IX Hispana

The choice for us was an easy one. Legio IX Hispana has its origins in Hispania (Spain) under Gaius Julius Caesar. San Diego, California, USA, where the original version of Legio IX Hispana was founded, was originally a Spanish Castra, then a Colonia, 1669 AD. At the time the club was formed, they knew of no other attempt anywhere in the world to reenact Legio IX Hispana. There are others now, but that's where it started. and, NO, it was not because of the book The Eagle of the Ninth. Leg. IX had a good record and did a lot... we find them interesting.

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Welcome to Legio IX Hispana


Legio IX at Military Through the Ages 2015

Our full name...
LEGIO IX HISPANA COHORS III

You've reached the online camp of Legio IX Hispana. We're a group of hobbyists, historians, and Roman enthusiasts who come together to portray common Roman soldiers, support auxilia, and civilians who would have been associated with a Roman military encampment. We do this mainly at non-public "immersion" events, although we occasionally participate in public displays such as Military Through the Ages in Jamestown, VA. In doing this, we hope to gain knowledge about what these ancient people's lives were like. Maybe you too will find this interesting ...

If you're interested in signing up, read on Legio IX Hispana is looking for good recruits! It does cost some money, but if you are willing to work, we can help you get outfitted for a reasonable price. It is our philosophy to help new members to get rolling and not to just throw them in the deep water and tell them to swim. We are activley recruiting...

Centurio Gaius Lepidvs

Reenactment Philosophy

The best way to describe what we do is engendered in the phrase "experimental archeology." Our displays are dynamic, not static. We are not content with parades and drills or displays of gear. We, via our portrayals, prefer to put our Roman gear and equipment to the test.

We strongly believe that the gear we make or acquire is best portrayed and understood when it is used, used extensively, put to its physical limitations. We do not revere our equipment or handle it with cotton gloves. The gear we make and wear is designed and intended to be durable, fully functional soldier's gear, just like the originals.

  • If it bends, we straighten it.
  • If it breaks, we fix it.
  • If it is destroyed, we make a new one.
  • Learn how to form a chapter in your area.
  • Transfers are welcome learn how you can join Legio IX Hispana!

The enemy is near!
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