The Battle That Stopped Rome: Emperor Augustus, Arminius, and the Slaughter of the Legions in the Teutoburg Forest
By Peter S Wells. In A.D. 9, a defector from the Roman military, known to the Romans as Arminius, led an army of Teutonic warriors who trapped and then ferociously butchered three entire Roman legions.
The 20,000 soldiers killed were a quarter of the Roman army stationed north of the Alps. It was a blow from which the Roman empire never recovered and it unleashed a powerful Teutonic Europe.
If not for this battle, the Roman Empire would surely have expanded to the Elbe River, and probably eastward into present-day Russia. But after this defeat, the shocked Romans ended all efforts to expand beyond the Rhine, which became the fixed border between Rome and Germania for the next 400 years, and which remains the cultural border between Latin western Europe and Germanic central and eastern Europe today.
This fascinating narrative introduces us to the key protagonists: the emperor Augustus, the most powerful of the Caesars; his general Varus, who was the wrong man in the wrong place; and the barbarian leader Arminius, later celebrated as the first German hero.
Details some amazing detective work conducted by author Peter Wells on the actual site of the battle which was opened to researchers in the past decade.
Softcover, 256 pp.