This page cannot be viewed in frames

Go to page

If you have found a spelling error, please, notify us by selecting that text and pressing Ctrl+Enter.


This post is also available in: Polish (polski)

The Antesignani were excellent soldiers facing heavy infantry. There is a lot of controversy related to this unit. Vegetius defines this formation as “light infantry”, not reflecting its importance as a combat unit (Vegetius, De re militari, p. 34.).

In the “Civil War” of Caesar we meet the most sensible description of a unit that they were selected light infantrymen of assault troops. Marian Plezia, on the other hand, in his book “Słowniku łacińsko-polskim” probably most aptly calls this formation “commandos“.

These soldiers were armed with a spear, a few spears, a sword, lighter armour (a simple bronze breastplate instead of lorica hamata), a coolus helmet and a small oval shield (instead of a heavy scutum). During the march, the task of antesignani was to protect the marching columns and secure the area. In combat, these units protected/supported the legion attacked enemy skirmishers or accompanied in cavalry combat.

IMPERIUM ROMANUM needs your support!

Your financial help is needed, in order to maintain and develop the website. Even the smallest amounts will allow me to pay for further corrections, improvements on the site and pay the server. I believe that I can count on a wide support that will allow me to devote myself more to my work and passion, to maximize the improvement of the website and to present history of ancient Romans in an interesting form.


News from world of ancient Rome

If you want to be up to date with news and discoveries from the world of ancient Rome, subscribe to the newsletter.

Subscribe to newsletter!

Roman bookstore

I encourage you to buy interesting books about the history of ancient Rome and antiquity.

Check out bookstore

Spelling error report

The following text will be sent to our editors: