CIC 477

Past Issues
CIC 476
CIC 475
CIC 474
CIC 473
CIC 472
CIC 471
CIC 470
CIC 469
CIC 468
CIC 467
CIC 466
CIC 465
CIC 464
CIC 463
CIC 462
CIC 461
CIC 460
CIC 459
CIC 458
CIC 457
CIC 456
CIC 455
CIC 454
CIC 453
CIC 452
CIC 451
CIC 450
CIC 449
CIC 448
CIC 447
CIC 446
CIC 445
CIC 444
CIC 443
CIC 442
CIC 441
CIC 440
CIC 439
CIC 438
CIC 437
CIC 436
CIC 435
CIC 434
CIC 433
CIC 432
CIC 431
CIC 430
CIC 429
CIC 428
CIC 427
CIC 426
CIC 425
CIC 424
CIC 423
CIC 422
CIC 421
CIC 420
CIC 419
CIC 418
CIC 417
CIC 416
CIC 415
CIC 414
CIC 413
CIC 412
CIC 411
CIC 410
CIC 409
CIC 408
CIC 407
CIC 406
CIC 405
CIC 404
CIC 403
CIC 402
CIC 401
CIC 400
CIC 399
CIC 398
CIC 397
CIC 396
CIC 395
CIC 394
CIC 393
CIC 392
CIC 391
CIC 390
CIC 389
CIC 388
CIC 387
CIC 386
CIC 385
CIC 384
CIC 383
CIC 382
CIC 381
CIC 380
CIC 379
CIC 378
CIC 377
CIC 375
CIC 374
CIC 373
CIC 372
CIC 371
CIC 370
CIC 369
CIC 368
CIC 367
CIC 366
CIC 365
CIC 364
CIC 363
CIC 362
CIC 361
CIC 360
CIC 359
CIC 358
CIC 357
CIC 356
CIC 355
CIC 354
CIC 353
CIC 352
CIC 351
CIC 350
CIC 349
CIC 348
CIC 347
CIC 346
CIC 345
CIC 344
CIC 343
CIC 342
CIC 341
CIC 340
CIC 339
CIC 338
CIC 337
CIC 336
CIC 335
CIC 334
CIC 333
CIC 332
CIC 331
CIC 330
CIC 329
CIC 328
CIC 327
CIC 326
CIC 325
CIC 324
CIC 323
CIC 322
CIC 321
CIC 320
CIC 319
CIC 318
CIC 317
CIC 316
CIC 315
CIC 314
CIC 313
CIC 312
CIC 311
CIC 310
CIC 309
CIC 308
CIC 307
CIC 306
CIC 305
CIC 304
CIC 303
CIC 302
CIC 301
CIC 300
CIC 299
CIC 298
CIC 297
CIC 296
CIC 295
CIC 294
CIC 293
CIC 292
CIC 291
CIC 290
CIC 289
CIC 288
CIC 287
CIC 286
CIC 285
CIC 284
CIC 283
CIC 282
CIC 281
CIC 280
CIC 279
CIC 278
CIC 277
CIC 276
CIC 275
CIC 274
CIC 273
CIC 272
CIC 271
CIC 270
CIC 269
CIC 268
CIC 267
CIC 266
CIC 265
CIC 264
CIC 263
CIC 262
CIC 261
CIC 260
CIC 259
CIC 258
CIC 257
CIC 256
CIC 255
CIC 254
CIC 253
CIC 252
CIC 251
CIC 250
CIC 249
CIC 248
CIC 247
CIC 246
CIC 245
CIC 244
CIC 243
CIC 242
CIC 241
CIC 240
CIC 239
CIC 238
CIC 237
CIC 236
CIC 235
CIC 234
CIC 233
CIC 232
CIC 231
CIC 230
CIC 229
CIC 228
CIC 227
CIC 226
CIC 225
CIC 224
CIC 223
CIC 222
CIC 221
CIC 220
CIC 219
CIC 218
CIC 217
CIC 216
CIC 215
CIC 214
CIC 213
CIC 212
CIC 211
CIC 210
CIC 209
CIC 208
CIC 207
CIC 206
CIC 205
CIC 204
CIC 203
CIC 202
CIC 201
CIC 200
CIC 199
CIC 198
CIC 197
CIC 196
CIC 195
CIC 194
CIC 193
CIC 192
CIC 191
CIC 190
CIC 189
CIC 188
CIC 187
CIC 186
CIC 185
CIC 184
CIC 183
CIC 182
CIC 181
CIC 180
CIC 179
CIC 178
CIC 177
CIC 176
CIC 175
CIC 174
CIC 173
CIC 172
CIC 171
CIC 170
CIC 169
CIC 168
CIC 167
CIC 166
CIC 165
CIC 164
CIC 163
CIC 162
CIC 161
CIC 160
CIC 159
CIC 158
CIC 157
CIC 156
CIC 155
CIC 154
CIC 153
CIC 152
CIC 151
CIC 150
CIC 149
CIC 148
CIC 147
CIC 146
CIC 145
CIC 144
CIC 143
CIC 142
CIC 141
CIC 140
CIC 139
CIC 138
CIC 137
CIC 136
CIC 135
CIC 134
CIC 133
CIC 132
CIC 131
CIC 130
CIC 129
CIC 128
CIC 127
CIC 126
CIC 125
CIC 124
CIC 123
CIC 122
CIC 121
CIC 120
CIC 119
CIC 118
CIC 117
CIC 116
CIC 115
CIC 114
CIC 113
CIC 112
CIC 111
CIC 110
CIC 109
CIC 108
CIC 107
CIC 106
CIC 105
CIC 104
CIC 103
CIC 102
CIC 101
CIC 100
CIC 99
CIC 98
CIC 97
CIC 96
CIC 95
CIC 94
CIC 93
CIC 92
CIC 91
CIC 90
CIC 89
CIC 88
CIC 87
CIC 86
CIC 85
CIC 84
CIC 83
CIC 82
CIC 81
CIC 80
CIC 79
CIC 78
CIC 77
CIC 76
CIC 75
CIC 74
CIC 73
CIC 72
CIC 71
CIC 70
CIC 69
CIC 68
CIC 67
CIC 66
CIC 65
CIC 64
CIC 63
CIC 62
CIC 61
CIC 60
CIC 59
CIC 58
CIC 57
CIC 56
CIC 55
CIC 54
CIC 53
CIC 52
CIC 51
CIC 50
CIC 49
CIC 48
CIC 47
CIC 46
CIC 45
CIC 44
CIC 43
CIC 42
CIC 41
CIC 40
CIC 39
CIC 38
CIC 37
CIC 36
CIC 35
CIC 34
CIC 33
CIC 32
CIC 31
CIC 30
CIC 29
CIC 28
CIC 27
CIC 26
CIC 25
CIC 24
CIC 23
CIC 22
CIC 21
CIC 20
CIC 19
CIC 18
CIC 17
CIC 16
CIC 15
CIC 14
CIC 13
CIC 12
CIC 11
CIC 10
CIC 9
CIC 8
CIC 7
CIC 6
CIC 5
CIC 4
CIC 3
CIC 2
CIC 1

Short Rounds

The Spolia opima

In heroic cultures, like the Homeric Greeks or the Plains Indians, one of the highest distinctions a warrior can attain is to strip his enemy's body as a symbol of victory.  Thus in Homer we find numerous instances of clashes over possession of the bodies of the slain.

Among the Romans, the highest military honor was the "spolia opima splendid spoils", which could only be won by a general who had slain in single combat the opposing commander and then stripped his body of its arms and armor.  When his claim to the spolia opima had been established, the victorious general would ceremonially deposit his trophies in the temple Jupiter Feretrius on the Capitoline hill.  Winner of the spolia opima were permitted certain marks of distinction and public honors.

When the spolia opima was instituted, by Rome's founder, Romulus, it was assumed that a man might win this honor more than once, and a "sliding scale" of distinctions was instituted, much as today soldiers wear a small star on their decorations to indicate a second award.  Despite this assumption, in the long history of Rome, from monarchy to republic to empire, the spolia opima was only claimed three times.

  • Romulus (r. 753-717 BC) Having had their daughters and sisters kidnapped in "the Rape of the Sabine Women" in August of 753 B.C., the Sabine city-states undertook a war against the upstart Romans.  In the ensuing battle, Romulus slew Acron, King of the nearby city of Caenina.  Stripping Acron's corpse, Romulus subsequently built the temple of Jupiter Feretrius and solemnly deposited his trophies.
  • Aulus Cornelius Cossus (fl. mid-late Fifth Century BC) During the revolt of Fidenae and several other allied cities against Roman domination in 426 BC, Cossus, consular tribune and master of the horse, slew Tolumnius, King of Veii, an Etruscan city just a few miles north of Rome, and claimed the spolia opima.  
  • Marcus Claudius Marcellus (c. 268-208 BC) One of the most distinguished Romans of all time, as consul in 222 BC, defeated the Gallic Gaesatae in the Battle of Clastidium, a Roman outpost just south of the Po, slaying their king, Viridomarus in single combat, claiming the spolia opima.  Marcellus ultimately held the consulship five times, was the conqueror of Syracuse, in Sicily, and was killed in action in 208 BC, during the Second Punic War.  

Now it was possible for a Roman commander to defeat his opposite number in single combat and strip his corpse and yet not qualify for the spolia opima.  During the Second Servile War (104-100 BC), a widespread slave revolt in Sicily, the Consul Manius Aquillius (c. 160-88 BC) personally slew Athenion, "king" of the rebels, in single combat in 101 BC, but was denied the spolia opima because slaves were an unworthy foe.

With the end of the Republic, certain honors were no longer awarded, or were reserved for the Emperor, for he was always in command, or for members of the imperial family.  A general not a member of the imperial family was considered to merely be an imperial legate, and had to settle for lesser honors, such as "triumphal ornaments" rather than a triumph, and apparently no one was ever awarded anything in substitution for the spolia opima.

Thus it was that when, in 29 BC, Marcus Licinius Crassus (c. 70-10 BC), son of the triumvir killed by the Parthians in 53 BC, slew King Deldo of the Bastarnae, a Germanic tribe living in what is now Moldava, he was granted neither the spolia opima nor a triumph, though he had also added extensive lands in the Balkans to the Empire, because he was acting under the authority of Octavian, then in his fifth consulship

FootNote: During Julius Caesar's fifth consulship, in 44 BC, the year of his death, some sycophants in the Senate decreed him the honors of spolia opima, though as the ancient historian Dio Cassius wrote, "it was not even pretended that he had any legitimate claim to this distinction."

 

Feeding His Majesty's Navy, The Seven Years' War

By mid-eighteenth century the Royal Navy had already accumulated an impressive record, and during the Seven Years' War (1756-1763) British mastery of the tools of sea power gave won them the maritime primacy that would endure for nearly two centuries.

Much of the credit for this rested on the skills and experience of the "people," the common sailors who manned the fleet.  And those men had to be fed. 

The men on a British warship were fed using the "mess" system.  Four seamen or marines constituted a "mess," as did six soldiers in the event troops were being transported.  One man in each mess was assigned to draw rations from the cooks and serve the mess.

There was a standard weekly ration issue for each mess, as prescribed in some detail by Admiralty regulations.

Weekly Ration Allotments Per "Mess"
DayBread BeefPork Butter Pease RiceWater Rum
Sun4 pd-4 pd-2 pd-4 gal6 gill
Mon4 -- pd3 -4 6
Tue4 7 pd- -- 1 pd4 6
Wed4 -- pd2 -4 6
Thru4 -4 -2 -4 6
Fri4 -- pd - -4 6
Sat47 --- 1 46
TOT 28pd 14 pd 8pd 1 pd9 pd2 pd 28 gal 42 gill

Some substitution was allowed.  For example, the bread ration, usually hard tack, was occasionally replaced by a flour allocation, so that fresh bread could be baked or for use as a thickener in stews.  The beef and pork were naturally heavily salted, being preserved in brine, though occasionally fresh meat might be issued.  At times fish -- dried, salted, or, rarely, fresh -- might be substituted.  Quality control, preservation methods, and packing being what they were in the age, rotted or spoiled foodstuffs were not uncommon, and hard tack was frequently infested with weevils.  

From time to time, especially when a ship was in port or hard recently sailed, fresh produce might become available.

The principal meal was a mid-day "dinner", usually a thick stew. 

The fare was heavy in fat and sodium, but in eitheenth century terms, it was usually at least as good as what the average poor Briton ate.  It also lacked Vitamin C, which proved to be the primary cause of scurvy.  Shortly after the introduction of the daily grog ration in 1740, however, a little lime juice began to be added to the rum-water mixture, which, supplemented later by a sauerkraut ration, largely rid the fleet of the disease.

Most historians and others who have participated in taste tests of surviving eighteenth cnetury shipboard recipes have reported that the standard fare was palatable, occasionally even tasty, though very salty.  

 


© 1998 - 2022 StrategyWorld.com. All rights Reserved.
StrategyWorld.com, StrategyPage.com, FYEO, For Your Eyes Only and Al Nofi's CIC are all trademarks of StrategyWorld.com
Privacy Policy