Late Roman Shield Patterns

Comes per Isauriam

This page created 25 December, 2002, and last modified: 31 December, 2014 (Maier reference numbers added)


Frontpiece showing towns The following units are listed as being under the command of the Count of Isauria :

54.2 Legio secundae Isaura
54.3 Legio tertia Isaura
The numbers in front of the names refer to Ingo Maier's numbering scheme.

Disclaimer: Remember, a lot of what comes below is speculation. Hopefully informed speculation, but speculation nonetheless. Comments welcome! (lukeuedasarson "at"

As these are both limitanei units, their shield patterns are not given. Previously, as recorded by Ammianus (14.2.14), there had been three legions stationed in Isauria. Evidently the first Isaurian legion had been withdrawn from the province in the meantime, and indeed, under the Magister Militum per Orientem, we find the Prima Isaura sagittaria, where it is listed as a pseudocomitatenses unit.

Note the legions are called Legio II & III Isauria, with an extra "i" in the manuscripts. Also note that the Comes is called instead the "Dux Isauriae" at the end of his section, reflecting possible changes in status of the region's commander - see the discussion on this in N. Lenski, Assimilation and Revolt in the Territory of Isauria (1999), available here, at note 163.

Garrison locations are not given in the Notitia for either Legio II Isauria or Legio III Isauria. The frontpiece to the left, taken from the Bodleian manuscript (O), shows three larger and five smaller forts, but the only labels refer to natural features: "Tarsium mare" and "Mons Taurus" (the Gulf of Mersin and the Taurus Mountains, respectively).


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