Crassus Maximi Ovum, my father, fought for Rome as a Thracian auxiliary. Cohort I Thracum Equitata. His legion, based on the Limes, a defensive barrier running north to south from the Mare Germanicum (North Sea) to the Alps. It was created to keep out the ferocious barbaric tribes east of the Rhine, remember 9 A.D? At the end of his 20th year of service my father had achieved three things, retirement, citizenship and finally a legal marriage to a local woman. In his retirement from the legions he chose to settle just outside Augusta Trevorum ( Trier ). A huge task of setting up a farm and providing for his growing family and enjoying the peace. A task he completed well. Dis Manibus
I, his third son joined the legions, if for no other reason than to get away from my older brothers. My mother wasn’t pleased, fearing she would never see me again. But still, at the tender age of 16, as a Citizen soldier?, with the support of my father I enlisted wishing to proudly swear my oath beneath the Eagle of the mighty LEG XX.v.v.
My first year was as a tiro (beginner). This was spent in training on the German Limes before finally being shipped to Britain where the rest of the Legion was building a mighty legionary fortress at Deva in the west of the island next to the Hibernian sea, (Irish sea).
My arrival in Britain by boat was at Deva ( Chester ), barely noticed along with the Legion supplies and mail. Finally, I stood before the Eagle and Legate (legion commander) of the LEG XX v.v and proclaimed my oath and entered the ranks as a legionary. Just in time for the long march north to face off against the barbarian British tribes.
I served my 20 years. First as a Legionary (soldier) then moving up the ranks to Optio (second in command of a century), along the way experiencing all the horrors of frontline war, injury and the unforgettable smell of an enemies last breadth.
Ready as I was to retire, the offer of a further 15 years service, promoted to the rank of Centurio Decimus Pilus Posteria. To be served at Deva ( Chester ) training the new recruits, was just too good to turn down. In my last five years, I set my British house slave free and married her, she now stays with me in Deva.
As a veteran Centurio, my pension is more than enough for a comfortable life if you’re smart. I have my gift of land and enough gold to buy quality skilled slaves to establish my dreams of a modest latifundia (farm) maybe close to the coast. It should produce enough income to cover my costs and provide a good living for me and my now growing family. I hope my family are proud of my achievements and my Phalera (medals) and feel I have brought honour to our name. My wish now, Gods willing, is to enjoy the peace I fought for and live into a comfortable old age watching my children grow.