This page created 3 August 2014, and last modified: 30 October 2014 (Frankfurt fragment image added)
One of units assigned to the Magister Equitum's Gallic command is called the Atecotti iuniores Gallicani. Its shield pattern in the various manuscripts is found under the label Atecotti iuniores, except in the Frankfurt fragment, Ff, which has Atecotti sen(iores); the different versions are as shown below:
The pattern is simple, with a red boss (yellow in M) encircled with a white band; a red rim; and a purple main ground (more indigo in P, and faded to maroon in M, and to pink in W). The pattern is thus very similar to those ascribed to the Tertia Iulia Alpina, a unit of legiones comitatenses in the Magister Peditum's Italian command and the Fortenses, a unit of legiones comitatenses under the "Comes" Hispenias.
Note that the unit is not listed in the infantry register of Magister Peditum; Seeck interpolated it between the Felices iuniores Gallicani and the Tungri because this is where its shield pattern and associated label occur (see here, page 14, note 69 for some commentary by Ingo Maier). Although there is evidence that many labels attached to the shield patterns illustrating the western auxilia platina have been shifted from their proper places, it is not clear that this has happened to this unit; it may well be labelled with the correct shield pattern. Indeed, the fact that the pattern of the Atecotti iuniores (Gallicani) is similar to those of the similarly-named auxilia palatina units, the Honoriani Atecotti seniores and the Honoriani Atecotti iuniores, would seem to indicate that these three patterns may well be in their correct places. Another unit of Atecotti, so-named, and also a unit of auxilia palatina, is found in the eastern half of the empire, under the Magister Militum per Illyricum. A comparison of the following patterns taken from the Parisian manuscript shows the relationship between the patterns of the four Atecotti units; that of the eastern unit bears no strong relationship, although it does at least share the main field colour:
The name Atecotti is a tribal one, indicating an obscure people from the north of the British Isles; Ammianus records they raided Roman Britain in the late 4th century; while St Jerome, a contemporary of Ammianus, notes that they took their wives in common.
The name Gallicani refers to the region of Gaul, and probably indicates the unit was either stationed somewhere there before attached to the Illyrian field army, or else that it was formed there, perhaps by spliiting it off another of the Attecotti units.
Return to the Notitia alphabetical unit list page.
Return to my Notitia index page.