The Bucinobantes

This page created 20 April 2014, and last modified: 5 May 2014


The Bucinobantes is 10th listed unit of auxilia palatina under the command of the second Master of the Soldiers in the Imperial Presence. Its shield pattern as shown in various manuscripts is as below:

Shield patterns

Disclaimer: remember, I'm not an expert in the field of Notitia studies, so take my comments with a grain of salt...

The shield pattern shows a red ground and rim, with a purple band (white in F) dividing them. The boss colour varies from manuscript to manuscript, but all show a differentiated inner circle, middle region, and outer band. Thus the gross features of plain circles echo the pattern of the similarly-positioned unit under the first Master of the Soldiers in the Imperial Presence, the Raetobarii, but the colour scheme is very different.

Like the name Raetobarii, Bucinobantes refers to a sub-group of the Germanic Alamanni; the Alamanni were one of the main groupings of people attempting to establish themselves across the Rhine during the 4th century; they finally succeeded in doing so in the first decade if the 5th - after the easter section of the Notitia had been compiled, but before the western section had last been modified. The late-4th century historian Ammianus relates (29.4.7) how a contingent of Bucinobantes under their king Macrianus was sent to Britain by Valentinian I, and how Macrianus was later killed while allied to Rome fighting the Franks (30.3.7).


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