Roman Scorpion Catapult (Dart-Thrower)

Roman Scorpion Catapult (Dart-Thrower)

Roman legions were equipped with small catapults which could be dismantled and carried by baggage animals or on wagons. These catapults fired heavy arrows at an effective range of more than 300 m. Available catapults were deployed into batteries prior to battle, and they were served by regular infantry crews. The Legionare shown here is a member of Römergruppe Pfünz, a German reenactment society which participated at the Römertage Aalen on the weekend of 23rd and 24th September 2000. Many modern reproductions of the Scorpion are based on the so called Ampurias Catapult which was found during archeological excavations near Ampurias, Spain, in 1912.

Available Scale Model Kits

  • Roman Scorpion, 1:72 Fine Scale Factory AR01
  • Roman Scorpion, 1:72 HaT Industrie 8035

Technical Specifications

  • Scorpion
  • Type: small catapult
  • Propulsion System: torsion
  • Length: 1600 mm
  • Width: 1150 mm
  • Height: 1400 mm
  • Weight: 80 kg
  • Range: 370 m
  • Ammunition: heavy arrow, 70 cm long

Museum Exhibits

Scorpion of Legio VIII Augusta

Scorpion of Legio VIII Augusta

Legionare and Scorpion at the camp of legio VIII Augusta

Legionare and Scorpion at the camp of legio VIII Augusta

Films featuring the Scorpio

  • The stunning effect of a battery of Scorpions is portrayed quite realistically during the initial battle scene of the film "Gladiator".

Historical Employment

  • The Scorpion is the standard infantry support weapon of the Roman Legion. Scorpions were deployed in batteries and they fired salvos during battle.

Wargamers will want to support their Roman infantry with a battery of Scorpions. The Roman Artillery set released by HaT Industrie is a good source of Scorpions and attendant gunners.

Bibliography

Frequently Asked Questions

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Ancient Miniatures