Quod raro alias, praetorianus urbanusque miles in aciem deducti. Unsolved problems and new interpretations on the movements and the composition of the urban troops during the civil wars of AD 69 (Part II)
During the Year of the four emperors the Praetorian Guard and the Urban cohorts played an important role in the military events of the civil wars. The paper examines some problems related to the involvement of these military corps in the military campaigns of AD 69: the number of soldiers and cohorts participating in the different war scenarios, the movements and the fate of Otho’s Praetorians compared with Vitellius’ newly formed Praetorian cohorts. Moreover, in light to new interpretations of the sources, it analyzes the history and the composition of the four Urban cohorts created by Vitellius: in particular, I discuss the thesis according to which Vitellius mixed in legionaries formerly serving on the Rhine frontier and the old Otho’s urbaniciani within these new Urban cohorts.
Keywords: Praetorians, Urban cohorts, Year of the Four Emperors, Otho, Vitellius.
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