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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: The Arena:
200 Gondor Fountain Guards vs. 200 Roman Legionaires

Keebler the Elf
Rivendell

Apr 16 2008, 4:18pm

Post #1 of 14 (4793 views)
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200 Gondor Fountain Guards vs. 200 Roman Legionaires Can't Post

So, I'm thinking that the Fountain Guards have their huge spears and shields, and the Legionaires have their huge shields and spears.

That being said:

100 Fountain Guards lock shields and stick spears straight out. The other 100 draw swords and hold shields in forward position.

100 Romans lock shields and spears, and then the other 100 holds spears in throwing position, since their spears aren't too long to throw, like the fountain guards are.

Both sides charge in ordered formation. Who wins?

I'd go with the Fountain Guards, because of their better armor, but I think Padster would disagree. I think he'd say that the Romans are better trained, better in one-on-one combat, and because the Fountain Guards are mainly for decoration and tradition, the Romans would win even with less armor.


numenor888
The Shire


Apr 17 2008, 1:09am

Post #2 of 14 (768 views)
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bull [In reply to] Can't Post

fountain guards would pwn

The risky Ranger
Numenor


Milady
Rivendell


Apr 17 2008, 12:05pm

Post #3 of 14 (858 views)
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I'm with Padster [In reply to] Can't Post

(I'm going with the movie outfits for lack of a better description) The Fountain Guards are covered in lots of dark, heavy fabric, along with their armor, and their helmets can't allow for much peripheral vision. Even though they're trained to fight that way, I'd imagine that would hamper them more than a little. The Romans have armor that gives them much more freedom of movement, so they could probably move more nimbly and dodge more attacks.

I'd say that just on basis of what they wear, the Romans would win. Also, I'm not sure the Fountain Guards have very much practice with actual combat, because as far as I can tell they stand around a tree all day. The Roman army was always deployed conquering someone or other, so they'd probably have more experience and practice fighting.

I'll be leading the Reading Room discussion of The Two Towers: The Road to Isengard on the week of May 26--June 1. Be sure to stop by!

Has anyone ever wondered what would have happened if Smaug had ate Bilbo, and therefore the ring? It would be interesting to see Sauron send orcs to go diving for the Ring.


Keebler the Elf
Rivendell


Apr 17 2008, 3:08pm

Post #4 of 14 (839 views)
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Padster's reputation precedes him [In reply to] Can't Post

Even though Padster hasn't spoken here yet, he'll pick the Romans as I already said. And yah, maybe this one really wasn't worth discussing. Hmmm. I'll try another one.


SmeagoloftheStoors
Lorien


Apr 18 2008, 1:30am

Post #5 of 14 (774 views)
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Vini Vedi Vicci [In reply to] Can't Post

My Latin is rusty at best but Rome hands down. Their tactis and such out weigh their armor issues. http://numbera.com/...trategy/legform.aspx , http://www.roman-empire.net/army/tactics.html

Eglario Valar!


Padster
Bree


Apr 18 2008, 8:07pm

Post #6 of 14 (785 views)
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Well... [In reply to] Can't Post

...I feel humbled and not a small amount of shame at having been such a vociferously opinionated contributor to this message board as to have my opinion guessed before I know it myself. Apologies everyone.

Anyway, firstly I would say that I am no historian, and my knowledge of Legionnaires is limited to that which I picked up in school, and what I have seen in movies such as Gladiator and such TV programmes such as the BBC's and HBO's Rome. So not the best guide I would suggest. However, I have always thought Roman Legionnaires to be rock hard. You don't conquer most of the known world (as they saw it) unless your forces are hard and your tactics awsome.

Secondly, if we are talking about the guards we see in the movie, with plate armour and all, the armour depicted in the movie is NOTHING like the armour in the books, at least they did not wear plate armour. None in Minas Tirith did. They were all garbed in chain armour.

And I do think you are all being a bit harsh on the Fountain Guards though. The 'Fountain' guards I cannot see as being any different from the other guards within the Citadel of Minas Tirith (as opposed to the wider city). Those who were of the Tower of Guard must have been amongst the best in Gondor, wouldn't they? Surely they would. And of course they were armoured in mithril (at least to some degree):

The Guards of the gate were robed in black, and their helms were of strange shape, high-crowned, with long cheek-guards close-fitting to the face, and above the cheek-guards were set the white wings of sea-birds; but the helms gleamed with a flame of silver, for they were indeed wrought of mithril, heirlooms from the glory of old days. Upon the black surcoats were embroidered in white a tree blossoming like snow beneath a silver crown and many-pointed stars. This was the livery of the heirs of Elendil, and none wore it now in all Gondor, save the Guards of the Citadel before the Court of the Fountain where the White Tree once had grown.

OK it was just their helms, but even so, why waste what must have been the best helm in the city on guards who were not any good.

Plus, these men were Dunedain, even though they may have been of a variety of pureness in blood, and therefore they were 'greater' than the average man, even a soldier. As it is clear from the meeting of the Dunedain of the north with the Rohirrim, as described by Gimli:

"They are a strange company, these newcomers," said Gimli. "Stout men and lordly they are, and the Riders of Rohan look almost as boys beside them; for they are grim men of face, worn like weathered rocks for the most part, even as Aragorn himself; and they are silent."

Now there would no doubt have been some difference between the Northern and the Southern Dunedain, but they were fundamentally the same people. And Beregond, a member of the Guard showed he was no slouch at combat by downing two of Denethor's personal armed servants without taking a hit himself. Denethor MUST have had tough personal guards in the midst of a war with Mordor. So again, I think the members of the Guard of the Citadel must have been hard combatants themselves.

I don't know WHO to give it to to be fair. If we are talking front line legionnaires, then I would give it to them. Their tactics were great and they were very hard. If we are talking anything short of front line Legionnaires, then I'd give it to the Fountain Guards.

Cheers


Padster


SmeagoloftheStoors
Lorien


Apr 18 2008, 11:31pm

Post #7 of 14 (846 views)
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As per the chain maile [In reply to] Can't Post

I was thinking and the armor anf weapons of the Romans were closer to that of the Gondorians (less the mithril) by around 100AD. I assumed that everyone on here was thinking of the soldier clad in a Lorica Segmentata with a Gladius, Pilum, Tower shield, and Pugio dagger, an Imperial Galic type G helmet, and possibly a pair of greaves. This is in contrast to the later period in which the soldiers were armed with the longer Spatha, a standard spear, an oval or round shield, and a basic dagger. They were also armored in the lorica squamata (a coat of plates like a brigandene without an outer layer) or the more common lorica hamata (chain maile shirt), a grecco-roman helm, and definatly greaves. The tactics were diferent too, all of this could have leveled the feild a bit.

Eglario Valar!


Keebler the Elf
Rivendell


Apr 19 2008, 2:32pm

Post #8 of 14 (749 views)
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So its tougher to pick than I thought? [In reply to] Can't Post

Well...maybe its a matter of opinion then? Hmmmm. Ok, maybe we should give the Citadel Guards some slack. If we talk book, then the Citadel Guards rock!!!! I was thinking more movies, where they didn't seem so great.


Greenleaf
Bree


Apr 22 2008, 2:24am

Post #9 of 14 (769 views)
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Romans [In reply to] Can't Post

Phalanx = unbeatable.

The Iron of Death


Keebler the Elf
Rivendell


Apr 22 2008, 4:10pm

Post #10 of 14 (742 views)
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Why? [In reply to] Can't Post

So why does Phalanx = Unbeatable? Why doesn't Fountain Guards w/ Mithril helms = Unbeatable?


Gaffer Gamgee
Bree


Apr 23 2008, 12:36am

Post #11 of 14 (1012 views)
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Spear usage [In reply to] Can't Post

You mentioned that 100 of the Romans get ready to throw their spears. This is a common misconception. In battle, you never threw your spear - you were basically throwing your weapon away! So whether you get your enemy or not, the point is, spears were never thrown - mainly set as an obstacle for an oncoming mass of soldiers, or to keep people at a distance.

Heed the words of the Gaffer. For even if they not be wise, they are worth listening to.


SmeagoloftheStoors
Lorien


Apr 25 2008, 5:15am

Post #12 of 14 (782 views)
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Thank you [In reply to] Can't Post

I really like to hear posts by people that understand field combat tactics.

Eglario Valar!


numenor888
The Shire


May 7 2008, 1:46am

Post #13 of 14 (4750 views)
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Welllllllllll... [In reply to] Can't Post

actucally the romans in the second, third, and fourth ranks threw their over the heads of the first rank then drew their swords

The risky Ranger
Numenor


AncalagontheBlack
Rohan

Jun 29 2013, 4:03pm

Post #14 of 14 (88 views)
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fountain guards [In reply to] Can't Post

 

 
 

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