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date: 04 August 2020


The Oxford Dictionary of the Classical World
John RobertsJohn Roberts

(pl. līmitēs) originated as a surveyor's term for the path that simultaneously marked the boundaries of plots of land and gave access between them. It came to be used in a military sense, first of the roads that penetrated into enemy territory, and thence, as further conquest ceased, of the land boundaries that divided Roman territory from non‐Roman. At this stage a whole paraphernalia of border control grew up—frontier roads with intermittent watch‐towers and forts and fortlets to house the provincial garrisons which moved up to the frontier line. The term ... ...

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