Battle of the Teutoburg Forest

Cenotaph of Marcus Caelius, who "fell in the war of Varus"
Cenotaph of Marcus Caelius, who "fell in the war of Varus"

The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest took place in 9 A.D. in which German tribesmen inflicted a disastrous defeat on the Romans. At that time Publius Quinctilius Varus, one of Emperor Augustus' relatives, commanded the Roman army in Germany.

Late in the summer of 9 A.D., Varus led three legions to meet an army of rebellious Germans under the command of Arminius, a Cherusci chief. As Varus' army marched through the difficult terrain of the Teutoburg Forest, Arminius ambushed and annihilated the Romans. Varus committed suicide. The exact location of the battle is unknown, but it was probably between Osnabriick and Detmold.

The Battle of Teutoburg Forest was the greatest defeat suffered by the Roman Army during the early Roman Empire, and many historians believe that it is one of history's most significant battles. It has been claimed that the defeat put an end to Roman plans for the conquest of Germany because Augustus could not replace the men that were lost. When he heard about the defeat, he is reported to have lamented, "Quinctilius Varus, give me back my legions".

More by this Author

  • Roman Poet - Catullus

    Gaius Valerius Catullus (84 B.C. to 54 B.C.), Roman poet, whose love lyrics served as models for later European poets. There is little certain knowledge of his life. According to ancient sources, he was born in 87 b.c....

  • 2nd Century Rome

    While it lasted, the era of peace and prosperity under the good emperors brought to the world blessings that have never been wholly lost or forgotten. There was no serious threat or invasion from without or of...

  • The Rise of Ancient Greece

    The earliest inhabitants of Greece were probably Mousterian hunter-gatherers who roamed the region during the Middle Palaeolithic period. By 4000 BC Neolithic villages were established in most fertile lowland regions....


No comments yet.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.

    Click to Rate This Article