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The Ostrogothic Military

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Publication details

Title of host publicationA Companion to Ostrogothic Italy
DatePublished - Apr 2016
Number of pages27
Place of PublicationLeiden
EditorsJonathan Arnold, Shane Bjornlie, Kristina Sessa
Original languageEnglish
ISBN (Electronic)9789004315938
ISBN (Print)9789004313767


This chapter explores the place of the army and military organisation within the Ostrogothic kingdom. It discusses these issues according to three chronological phases: the army of the conquest, the army in the kingdom of Italy, and the Gothic Wars. Issues such as whether the Ostrogoths themselves were an army, the nature of the army’s settlement and provision of a salary in Italy, and the role of ethnic identity’s role in the formation of the army are all discussed. The army itself has not often been studied as a separate institution, and this may be because, as we shall see, throughout the Ostrogothic kingdom’s short life, the military was inextricably bound up with the nature and the fate of that polity.

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