Samnite Heavy Infantry are well armored with bronze breastplates, greaves and a round argive shield. They are trained to a high degree and carry heavy javelins and the Greek Kopis.
The Samnites come from the Apennine highlands of central and southern Italy. They have a military tradition as old as Rome itself. They were an expansionistic people until they were forcibly put down, for the last time in the 290’s BC. They have a fine tradition of fast heavy infantry that is very different from the Romans and from their southern Italian neighbors. Their infantry carries somewhat lighter javelins (and consequently more of them) and is armed with the Greek Kopis, a slashing sword that is very powerful and can be used against armor due to its shape (and is much like the Iberian Falcata). These Samnites are well armored with bronze breastplates, helms, greaves, and a round argive shield. Although not as disciplined as Roman infantry, they are trained to a high degree and make up for their indiscipline with their fighting style and fierce hatred of their Roman foe. Some Samnite tribes have broken with their brothers in Samnium and now work for the Romans. Others long for the day when an enemy of Rome will come to Italy so that they can flock to the fight against their hated foes…
Historically, the Samnites were one of the most rebellious Italian peoples and joined up with Rome’s enemies on a regular basis. They fought with Pyrrhos in the 290’s, rose up in rebellion during the first Punic War, and fought alongside Hannibal in the second Punic War. They rose a final time during the Italian Social Wars, and were incorporated into the Roman state by receiving Roman citizenship. They still fought with their distinctive bronze belts until the middle empire, and even then legions from Samnium still had the national symbol of their former country on their shields.