Battle of Forum Gallorum

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Battle of Forum Gallorum
Date April 14, 43 BC
Location Northern Italy
Result Minor Republican victory
Roman Republic Mark Antony's forces
Commanders and leaders
Gaius Vibius Pansa Caetronianus
Aulus Hirtius
Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus
Mark Antony
8 legions
-2 veteran legions that deserted from Mark Antony
-2 of Octavian's veteran legions
-4 newly recruited legions of Pansa
-a regular amount of cavalry
2 veteran legions with a larger than average cavalry force
Casualties and losses
the majority of 5 legions, all of Octavians Praetorian cohort 2 eagles, 60 standards, the majority of 1 legion

The Battle of Forum Gallorum was fought near a village in northern Italy (perhaps near modern day Castelfranco Emilia), on April 14, 43 BC, between the forces of Mark Antony and the legions of the Roman Republic under the overall command of consul Gaius Vibius Pansa Caetronianus, aided by Aulus Hirtius and the untested Octavian (the future Caesar Augustus). After months of negotiations between the Senate and Antony which did little to settle the questions of power and government after Caesar's assassination, this conflict became unavoidable.

Antony had Decimus Junius Brutus Albinus confined in position around Mutina (modern Modena), just south of the Padus (Po) River on the via Aemilia. Pansa was sent north from Rome to link with Hirtius and Octavian, bringing four legions of recruits in order to provide Brutus with aid. Antony, seizing the central position, hoped to deal with the enemy in piecemeal fashion, destroying the columns one at a time.

On April 14, Antony's legions (II and XXXV) collided with those of Pansa, in the village of Forum Gallorum. Pansa's troops were routed and the general severely wounded. Jubilant, Antony called off the pursuit of the broken army but was then astonished to see Hirtius crashing into his own exhausted ranks, taking two Roman eagles and 60 standards. The victory was turned into a disaster, Antony with his cavalry pulled back to his camp, having lost the initiative and the battle. Another conflict would take place six days later, at Mutina.


Information taken from Encyclopædia Britannica, Dictionary of the Roman Empire, and Osprey Essential Histories, Caesar's Civil War.