Archaeologists excavating the North Rhine-Westphalian town of Krefeld have unearthed thousands of artifacts attesting to a 1st century rebellion of Batavian tribesemen against Rome.
The Batavians, whose native territory was the delta between the Lower Rhine and the Waal, were long-time allies of Rome. Considered the bravest of all Germanic tribes, they had formed the core of the imperial guard since Augustus and had a special deal with the empire that exempted them from all tribute and taxes. The only resources the Batavians were required to contribute were fighting men, infantry and especially cavalry, famed for their amphibious ability to cross rivers on horseback in full armour. They contributed soldiers in far greater proportion than other Roman allies, an estimated 5,000 men out of a total population of just 35,000.
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