The Roman border regions

Table of Contents

The border regions are extremely important for the safety of the Roman Empire. In the best of case, those are areas of thriving trade and cultural exchanges. In the worst, their inhabitants live in constant terror of Barbarians raids which will leave them dead or enslaved.


East

In the East, relationships between people on both sides of the borders used to be very relaxed despite the constant wars between Rome and the Parthians, then the Sasanians. Soldiers stationed there had extensive relationships with local towns, even often managing their own businesses there. Being part of the army was jokingly referred to as being a well-paid hobby.   This all changed with the Sasanians' conquest of Anatolia 15 years ago. The emperor and the senate were as horrified as they were furious, and they put all of their power and influence into wiping the remaining legions into shape. Unfortunately, this did not result in any progress against the Sasanians.   The other inhabitants of the region are not as horrified with the Sasanians as the rest of the Roman Empire. They have learned to get to know their neighbours over time and to see that they were just as civilised as themselves, if different. In addition, there is a lot more profit to be done inside the Sasanian empire when they are not the ones having to pay the taxes for the import of luxury goods from Sinae.  
A bunch of traitors and would-be traitors, that's what they all are. So long as silver is flowing, nobody cares who is leading them! It's even only a question of time before Judea begs the Sasanians to "deliver" them from us...
— Livia, daughter of the Roman emperor

North-West and South

In Britannia, relationships with Caledonia have settled down, and the legions there are now mostly administering border taxes and controlling trade. All people in Britannia have slowly become acclimated to Roman culture, which is even spreading beyond the border with the barbarians starting to build their own public baths and theatres.   Similarly, the borders with Africa are calm, despite occasional violent raids from nomadic tribes. Trade has become a lot more important and so profitable for everyone.


North

Now that Magna Germania has finally been conquered, this has settled down the previous border regions. However, a lot of efforts need to be done to convince the German tribes that they are, in fact, under Roman rule. The Angles north of Germania are observing the situation with scepticism, but they seem rather intimidated at the presence of the glorious Roman Empire so close to them, and they are merely observing the situation.  
See? Those are all good Barbarians, clearly understanding the advantages of Roman civilisation!
— Livia



North East

This is now the most dangerous region of the empire and where all the best legions have been relocated. Recently, there have been a lot of movements from the Germanic and Iranian tribes living beyond the borders as a result of all the shuffling going on between tribes living on the Steppes.   The Huns have pushed West and South, making the Romans lose the provinces of Dacia Superior and Malvensis 18 years ago, and forcing all the minor tribes right into the empire, either to raid or to beg for the right to settle there. The emperor and senate have chosen to allow them to do the later in the hope of gaining more warriors for the empire and a buffer zone between themselves and the Huns.   Because of this, all of this border has become a strange mix between Roman, German, and Iranian cultures, with a lot of strange gods and cults. As is usual with conquered territories, the tribes have been allowed to keep their own legal system, so long as they agree to the worship of the emperor's genius, to pay taxes, and that their people have a right to ask for the emperor's arbitration.  
One good point of this mixture is that, for all Barbarian that they are, the Germans know how to treat woman with proper respect! Thanks Minerva for giving my mother the inspiration and strength to raise me there rather than in Rome with all the crusty senators!
— Livia
The Roman and Sasanian Empires year 344
Click the options on the map to see how the Romans and Sasanians have gained and lost territories over the last decades, as well as to see the name of the Roman regions and foreign countries and people.



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