THE STAFF AND STAFF TROOPS.
§ 29. The general staff of an army consisted of the commanding general, the legates, the quæstors, the assistants, the guards, and the engineers (fabri).
§ 30. The legates (legati) were men of senatorial rank, who were assigned to the proconsul in greater or less numbers by the senate. In military service they were the lieutenants of the commanding general, and were by him often placed at the head of detachments of one or more legions, with varying powers. But all their powers were derived from the general. Cæsar made a great improvement in organization by placing a legate regularly in command of each legion. Such legate was afterwards known, under the empire, as legatus legionis, by way of distinction from a legate with greater powers.
B. G. I, 52. M. p. 457.
§ 31. The quæstor, assigned by lot to superintend the finances of a province, also had charge of the supplies of the army. In the execution of this duty he saw to the food, pay, clothing, arms, equipments, and shelter of the troops. To do all this, he must have had under him a numerous body of men. He filled the place both of adjutant-general and of quartermaster-general in a modern army.
§ 32. There always followed the general a number of young men as his attendants (contubernales, comites praetorii), who were volunteers, and who aimed to learn the art of war. They composed the nobler part of the cohors praetoria, or attendants of the general.
Many of them could be used as aids in the administrative department of the army, or on the field of battle. When they were very numerous, they were formed into detachments, or sometimes joined the body-guard, and could thus directly take part in battle.