Naval Forts | Tools of War | The Roman Military

Naval Forts

In addition to Rome's great army, it naval force was also a great pride. When Rome began attacking the coastlines in Africa and Greece there was often no time to find wood and build a fortified camp. Also importing the material was costly and inefficient, to remedy this problem the army came up with a great idea: use the ships. Once a ship had unloaded its soldiers, and once the soldiers had secured a beachhead, the ships would be hauled ashore. The soldiers would then either disassemble the ship or simply ground it. These ships provided cover, and a secure place to anchor heavy artillery. Without these make-shift forts the Roman siege across the Mediterranean would have been stunted or stopped completely. This practice of using ships for forts became common after the success they had with Carthage, and the ship-forts became such a part of Roman overseas strategy that the Roman Navy specially fitted many of their ships to accommodate the Army's strict requirements for a usable fort. These ship forts were a huge advantage Rome gave itself when attacking the far off reaches of the Empire.