Sunday, December 30, 2012

Ninth Legion

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movies The Last Legion, The Eagle and Centurion.

There always seems to be two similar movie about same subject made almost same time. Ninth Legion was subject couple years ago. When I planned this post  I thought Ninth Legion had three but The Last Legion was made three years prior to The Eagle and Centurion. What was the reason that Ninth Legion was interesting at the time?

Ninth Legion is most know for its disappearing. It just disappears from documents around 117 CE and there is no mention why. At the time Ninth Legion was in Britain and some speculate that it was destroyed in battle. There are also other speculations but to me that battle sounds best. What ever the reason there wasn't ninth legion after that. It showed that Roman empire was vulnerable like battle of  the Teutoburg Forest hundred years earlier. In that battle three roman legions were ambushed and destroyed. After the battle Rome never tried to conquer Germania again.

The Last Legion doesn't make any attempt to be historically accurate. It happens almost 350 years after Ninth Legion disappeared. But the last legion of the movie is Ninth Legion. Rest of the movie same kind of fantasy containing characters from real history. I am not going in to that because this is about Ninth Legion but I'd like to read how wrong the movie got these things from historian point of view. In movie Ninth Legion founded town after Rome had forgotten them. They used local clothes and names and acted like locals.

Centurion is story how Ninth Legion was led in to ambush and destroyed there. Movie suggest that Rome didn't want to tell about ambush because they didn't want another battle of  the Teutoburg Forest to decrease morale of Romans. For that they removed every mention of Ninth Legion and started hunting surviving Ninth Legion members.

In The Eagle Ninth Legion was destroyed in battle and enemy had captures symbol of legion the Eagle of the Ninth. In this movie the battle is shown to be similar to battle of Teutoburg Forest. In movie son of one legionnaire of Ninth Legion search the Eagle of the Ninth.

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