Late Romans
350-400 AD

By Nick Gaukroger

The list represents armies of the mid to late 4th century AD and covers the eastern and western armies with two separate although similar lists. The armies in the east tend to include more cavalry and archers to counter the Sassanid Persians in the more open terrain of the east. During this period the army was divided between the Limitianei, who were deployed on and close to the frontiers of the empire, and the Palatine and Comitatenses forces, who were based in the interior to be deployed where needed. As the former did not operate in large sized groupings these armies are built around the latter.

The Late Roman army was mainly dependant of the infantry of the Legiones and Auxilia Palatina—just as was the army of the preceding centuries. The performance of the cavalry as described by Ammianus is not very impressive—they can be blamed for the disaster at Adrianapole—and the list represents this mainly infantry army with supporting cavalry. It is the infantry who win the battles in the traditional Roman fashion.