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Caesar's Legion: The Epic Saga of Julius Caesar's Elite Tenth Legion and the Armies of Rome | [Stephen Dando-Collins]

Caesar's Legion: The Epic Saga of Julius Caesar's Elite Tenth Legion and the Armies of Rome

Stephen Dando-Collins paints a vivid and definitive portrait of daily life in the Tenth Legion as he follows Caesar and his men along the blood-soaked fringes of the Empire. This unprecedented regimental history reveals countless previously unknown details about Roman military practices, Caesar's conduct as a commander and his relationships with officers and legionnaires, and the daily routine and discipline of the Legion.
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Publisher's Summary

Stephen Dando-Collins paints a vivid and definitive portrait of daily life in the Tenth Legion as he follows Caesar and his men along the blood-soaked fringes of the Empire. This unprecedented regimental history reveals countless previously unknown details about Roman military practices, Caesar's conduct as a commander and his relationships with officers and legionnaires, and the daily routine and discipline of the Legion.

From penetrating insights into the mind of history's greatest general to a grunt's-eye view of the gruesome realities of war in the Classical Age, this unique and riveting true account sets a new standard of excellence and detail to which all authors of ancient military history will now aspire.

©2002 Stephen Dando-Collins; (P)2005 Blackstone Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

"Written in a readable, popular style, this book is a must for military buffs and anyone interested in Roman history at a critical point in European civilization." (T.R. Fehrenbach, author of Lone Star)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (355 )
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  •  
    Craig Los Angeles, CA, United States 03-06-11
    Craig Los Angeles, CA, United States 03-06-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "an excellent historical work"

    This isn't just the story of the 10th Legion. It's also the story of Julius Caesar, Pompey, Marc Antony, Rome's civil wars, and so much more. It's told in an interesting manner, never dry or boring despite its richness of proper sourcing and crediting. I wish more history was told so entertainingly and accurately.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Darkcoffee Allen, TX, United States 10-13-09
    Darkcoffee Allen, TX, United States 10-13-09 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Portrait of a Centuries-long Roman Institution"

    There's not anything new here, but Dando-Collins brings together all the classic authors (Suetonius, Tacitus, Julius Caesar himself, etc.) and re-images the characters and setting based on this amalgamation of sources. We get an excellent storyteller's survey of the rise of Julius Caesar and the creation of the 10th Legion ("Caesar's Legion" of the title) in Spain. The book loses steam a bit after the 10th drops from Caesar's favor after Pharsala (the battle that won the Roman Civil War for Caesar), yet remains interesting enough through the death of Pompey in Egypt. Then there's a dry stretch for a couple hundred years until we get to the Romans in 2nd century Israel, and a rousing finale with the fall of Jerusalem, the destruction of the temple by the Legions, and the scattering of the Jews. It's all great stuff, and will provide a excellent backgrounder for those who want to go on and read or listen to the classic era historians.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William R. Toddmancillas Chico, California United States 08-03-14
    William R. Toddmancillas Chico, California United States 08-03-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Caesar's Tenth Legion: Its Triumphs & Discontents"
    What did you love best about Caesar's Legion?

    Learning about how the Legions were actually constituted and how they functioned. Just fascinating.


    What other book might you compare Caesar's Legion to and why?

    The Teaching Company has several series on Ancient History and most of them are excellent descriptions of daily lives of soldiers during this same period. These series compare favorably with Caesar's Legion. These materials complement one another nicely.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I was struck by how severe Caesar could be when disciplining his troops: Literally killing one in ten of the ranks???? Now that is severe discipline.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Not possible. Too long. Too much to absorb between listening sessions.


    Any additional comments?

    An excellent selection.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Korea 06-28-13
    Amazon Customer Korea 06-28-13 Member Since 2013

    Text Book Worm

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    "Compiles primary sources into a coherent story"
    Where does Caesar's Legion rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book was well written, well researched, and well narrated but it runs the risk of fictionalizing history for some purists. The author does a masterful job of placing evidence from various primary sources into a well-designed chronological story but it is hard to tell when he is quoting and when he is imagining how history might have happened. For the scholar, be wary of any dialogue that seem to come too easy but it is still very much worthwhile. For the casual historian, this is the way to read Caesar!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Edward Gregory central NC 03-02-13
    Edward Gregory central NC 03-02-13 Member Since 2005

    GoCanes

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    8
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    "Legionnaire's delight"
    Where does Caesar's Legion rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    this is in the top quintile. i loved the specifics on how a legion was created, the development of legion techniques. julius caesar as a character was fascinating and the history i learned was rewarding.
    got it after listening to the history of rome podcast, which i cannot recommend highly enough


    What did you like best about this story?

    a great true story, made the lives of the normal soldier accessible


    What about Stuart Langton’s performance did you like?

    very easy to understand and follow, right pace for an audiobook and no jarring mispronunciations (to my ear)


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    just sad at the carnage


    Any additional comments?

    just recommend the history of rome podcast, listen to more roman history books!
    loved the book on hannibal and cannae

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karin W. Dublin, CA USA 02-11-13
    Karin W. Dublin, CA USA 02-11-13 Member Since 2008

    Fantasy and Romance Author

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fascinating and frequently gripping history"
    Any additional comments?

    Far from being a dry account of dates and battles, CAESAR'S LEGION brings this ancient Roman military force to vivid life by chronicling the lives and adventures individual commanders, centurions, and ordinary soldiers.

    Filled with fascinating details about how soldiers were recruited and trained, and how they lived while on the march, the book focuses on three major periods in the legion's history: the conquest of Gaul and Britain under the leadership of Julius Caesar; the legion's role in the civil wars that ended the Roman Republic and ushered in the reign of the emperors; and the Jewish rebellion and siege of Jerusalem under Emperor Vespasian and his son Titus.

    All three of these campaigns, as narrated by Dando-Collins, are rife with intrigue, political maneuvering, betrayal, battles, and heroism. It made for a very interesting listening experience, and I'm looking forward to listening to another book in this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David columbia, MD, United States 01-31-13
    David columbia, MD, United States 01-31-13 Member Since 2009
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    "Well written but a different take on Caesar"
    What made the experience of listening to Caesar's Legion the most enjoyable?

    Well written, well researched. However, Dando-Collins comes to quite a few conclusions after reading the ancient sources that most ancient scholars would dismiss as bad history. A good novel, but not a good history.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    P. Moxey Atlanta, GA 01-01-13
    P. Moxey Atlanta, GA 01-01-13

    Patmox

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    "Very entertaining and informative!!"
    Would you listen to Caesar's Legion again? Why?

    Yes, of course. I liked it very much. And it was beautifully narrated.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It was very well researched and documented. Narration was excellent. I learnt a lot about the importance of the legions in the Roman Empire.


    Which character – as performed by Stuart Langton – was your favorite?

    Julius Caesar, of course. Thrilling voice and characteristic.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No reaction, I just loved it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nathan OOLTEWAH, TN, United States 06-01-12
    Nathan OOLTEWAH, TN, United States 06-01-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What a world that was"
    What did you love best about Caesar's Legion?

    The detail and attempted accuracy of what was said and the simplification of the book into "plebeian" terms.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Gaius Crastinus, a Centurion in the 10th; really, he was just the man.


    What about Stuart Langton’s performance did you like?

    He narrated the book without irritating me with his voice.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    IDK.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jerry Harlingen, TX, United States 03-28-12
    Jerry Harlingen, TX, United States 03-28-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Very solid book."

    I learned a lot from this book. The author did his research. You feel like you are living with the 10th legion!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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