Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics

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PROPER DISTANCES AND INTERVALS.

Having explained the general disposition of the lines, we now come to the distances and dimensions. One thousand paces contain a single rank of one thousand six hundred and fifty-six foot soldiers, each man being allowed three feet. Six ranks drawn up on the same extent of ground will require nine thousand nine hundred and ninety-six men. To form only three ranks of the same number will take up two thousand paces, but it is much better to increase the number of ranks than to make your front too extensive. We have before observed the distance between each rank should be six feet, one foot of which is taken up by the men. Thus if you form a body of ten thousand men into six ranks they will occupy thirty-six feet in depth and a thousand paces in front. By this calculation it is easy to compute the extent of ground required for twenty or thirty thousand men to form upon. Nor can a general be mistaken when thus he knows the proportion of ground for any fixed number of men.

But if the field of battle is not spacious enough or your troops are very numerous, you may form them into nine ranks or even more, for it is more advantageous to engage in dose order that to extend your line too much. An 155 army that takes up too much ground in front and too little in depth, is quickly penetrated by the enemy’s first onset. After this there is no remedy. As to the post of the different corps in the right or left wing or in the center, it is the general rule to draw them up according to their respective ranks or to distribute them as circumstances or the dispositions of the enemy may require.

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Chicago: "The Military Institutions of the Romans, Book 3: Proper Distances and Intervals," Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics in Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics, ed. Thomas R. Phillips (Harrisburg, PA: The Military Service Publishing Company, 1940), Original Sources, accessed September 15, 2019, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=PBFAX2H3JJT4K19.

MLA: . "The Military Institutions of the Romans, Book 3: Proper Distances and Intervals." Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics, in Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics, edited by Thomas R. Phillips, Harrisburg, PA, The Military Service Publishing Company, 1940, Original Sources. 15 Sep. 2019. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=PBFAX2H3JJT4K19.

Harvard: , 'The Military Institutions of the Romans, Book 3: Proper Distances and Intervals' in Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics. cited in 1940, Roots of Strategy: A Collection of Military Classics, ed. , The Military Service Publishing Company, Harrisburg, PA. Original Sources, retrieved 15 September 2019, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=PBFAX2H3JJT4K19.