A military officer, roughly equivalent to a colonel, commanding a tagma with the assistance of a hypotagmarkh. He appoints his hypotagmarkh, [[[taxiarkhs]], and [[[lokhagos | lokhagoi]], and thus has some considerable [[patronage]] to dispense. A tagmarkh ought to be an experienced commander, but considerations of patronage often dictate his appointment. The pay of a tagmarkh is eight obols per day, plus possible pay for [[panoply]]. In regular units (i.e. not [[militia]]), a tagmarkh is usually provided with an [[elephant]] from which to command in battle, and a [[mahout]] to drive it.

In the [[Classical Period]] one tagma is posted in each episkopy, and the tagmarkh is supposed to assist the episkopos in keeping the peace, defending the realm, enforcing the law, and otherwise as required. In addition to these ‘county’ tagmai there are two tagmai of Imperial Guards, a tagma of archers in the garrison of Thekla (the Toxeuma, and the Melankreuthes, of whom Jasper of Suvein is tagmarkh.

In the Decadent Period the disposition of the tagmai is the same, but the rôle of the tagmarkh is somewhat different. He is still an appointee of the polemarkh and (especially if the polemarkh does not trust the [[episkopos]]) a retainer of the polemarkh will be made tagmarkh to keep an eye on the epikopos and, through the use of patronage, to maintain a faction loyal to the polemarkh in the prefecture.

Copyright © 1991 by Brett Evill. All rights reserved.