The Gold of Tolosa - Sidebars

Copyright © 1995 by Luiz Claudio Duarte (

Page References

Rules and statistics in this adventure are specifically for the GURPS Basic Set, Third Edition. Any page reference that begins with a B refers to a page in the Basic Set - e.g., p. B102 means page 102 of the Basic Set, Third Edition. Page references beginning with IR refer to GURPS Imperial Rome.


[Regional Map]

Historical Background

Rome, as usual, is facing several threats: the Jugurthine war in Africa, the German invasions in Gaul, barbarian raids in Spain and Macedon, servile unrest in Italy and Sicily, and the first conquests of Mithridates in Asia.

In the political arena, the struggle between the popular party and the conservative party is again in the forefront due to Marius' successes against Jugurtha. Caepio, the senior consul, is determined to vanquish the Germans and outshine Marius.

This adventure is based on historical facts, although the circumstances are fictitious. It derives mainly from Strabo's Geography (Book IV, 188), written at the end of the 1st century BC. Almost all characters are fictitious, except for Caepio and Saturninus. Regino is mentioned in one of my sources, but I couldn't find nothing about his character, so he must also be considered a fictitious character.

Lucius Flavius Rufinus

Rufinus is one of the tribuni aerarii - Rome's treasurers. At 40, he isn't one of the leading senators (yet), but his job is an influent one. In the murky waters of Roman politics, he usually sides with the popular party against the conservatives.

He is a 10-point Patron, with a frequency of appearance of 9 or less (he has many clients, thanks to his position). He is acting without the knowledge of the other tribuni aerarii, since he intends to use whatever evidence the PCs find as a political lever.

Quintus Servilius Caepio

Caepio is a patrician through and through: he would rather lose an army than lose face. He is determined to beat the Germans and prove that he is a better general than "that upstart nobody Gaius Marius". It is said of him that only his greed is greater than his conceit.

The Legend of the Gold of Tolosa

Tolosa was located in Southern Gaul, at the region known as Narbonensis. It was the home of the Volcae Tectosages, a Celt tribe that had participated in the great Celt migration of the third century BC. In this migration, a large Celt horde went to Greece, sacking some of the richest cities of Antiquity, Delphi among them. After the death of their leader, the second Brennus, and repelled by a renewed Greek resistance, the Celts divided. Part went onward to Asia, where they settled (later being called Galats); the remainder returned to Gaul. It was said that the Tectosages brought home all the gold and silver pillaged from the Greek temples, and consecrated it to Apollo, who hid it.

The story of the Gold of Tolosa was well known in southern Gaul and Spain. Besides that, the lands of the Tectosages were rich in gold, although they did not mine it extensively.

Lucius Appuleius Saturninus

Saturninus is trying to build his political career as a demagogue, rather than by the regular magistratures. He is a consummate rabble-rouser, and rumor has that he isn't above using any means to further his ends.


ST 12, DX 12, IQ 9, HT 11
Basic Speed 5.75, Move 5
Dodge 5, Parry 8
No armor, no encumbrance
Skills: Shortsword-14, Knife-12, Spear Throwing-14.
Weapons: Shortsword: 1d+2 cutting, 1d-1 impaling;
         Knife (large): 1d cutting, 1d-1 impaling;
         Javelin: 1d impaling. Acc = 3, SS = 10,
                  1/2 damage at 18 yds., Max = 30 yds.


28, black hair, long tresses.
ST 10, DX 12, IQ 10, HT 12
Basic Speed 6, Move 6
Dodge 5, Parry 8
Light leather armor (PD 1, DR 1), no encumbrance
Skills: Shortsword-14, Area Knowledge (Gaul)-10, Tracking-15.
Weapons: Shortsword: 1d cutting, 1d-2 impaling.


30, brown hair, short beard.
ST 9, DX 11, IQ 12, HT 10
Basic Speed 5.25, Move 5
Dodge 5, Parry 6
No armor, no encumbrance
Skills: Knife-12, Merchant-15, Fast-Talk-14, Acting-14, Stealth-12.
Weapons: Knife (small): 1d-4 cutting, 1d-3 impaling.

A Latin slave-dealer from Capua; actually, an agent for Regino. After arranging the meeting for the PCs, he will make himself scarce; the PCs will not be able to find where he went.

Gnaeus Antistius Regino

41, brown balding hair, brown eyes.
ST 11, DX 12, IQ 14, HT 12.
Basic Speed 6, Move 6.
Dodge 5, Parry 6, Block 5.
Officer's armor (see p. IR41): bronze cuirass, bronze greaves, bronze helmet;
                               light encumbrance.
Advantages: Wealth (Rich), Status 6, Literacy, Military Rank 6.
Disadvantages: Lecherousness, Stubbornness.
Quirks: tries to hide the fact that he is balding.
Skills: Bard-16, Intimidation-11, Knife-10, Law-13, Politics-16,
        Riding (stirrupless)-10, Savoir-Faire-14, Shield-10, Shortsword-12,
        Spear-12, Spear Throwing-11.
Languages: Latin-16, Greek-14.
Weapons: Shortsword: 1d-1 impaling, skill 13; 1d+1 cutting, skill 11.
         Dagger: 1d-2 impaling.

Regino is Caepio's right-hand man. Utterly loyal, he is trusted by Caepio with all sensitive tasks. He will escort the gold to the banks in Smyrna, where Caepio arranged it to be deposited under false names.


According to Strabo, the Turdetanians from southwestern Spain were the wisest of the Spaniards. They are rather sophisticated by Roman standards, having been early influenced by Greeks and Carthaginians. The GM must not represent them as howling barbarians, but as a civilized people.


Late 50s, white hair, black eyes.
ST 9, DX 11, IQ 13, HT 12.
Basic Speed 5.75, Move 5.
Dodge 5, Parry 5.
Chainmail armor (PD 3, DR 3), medium encumbrance.
Skills: Politics-16, Savoir-Faire-14, Shortsword-10.
Languages: Latin-9, Greek-11.
Weapons: Shortsword: 1d-2 impaling, 1d-1 cutting.

Arucos is the chief of the Turdetanians. When Caepio was governor in Further Spain, and defeated the Lusitanians, long-time enemies of the Turdetanians, the grateful Arucos pledged himself and his tribe as clients of Caepio.

Turdetanian Warrior

ST 13, DX 12, IQ 10, HT 12
Basic Speed 6, Move 6
Dodge 5, Parry 8, Block 7
Light leather armor (PD 1, DR 1), small shield, light encumbrance
Skills: Shortsword-16, Spear Throwing-14, Shield-14, Stealth-12.
Weapons: Shortsword 2d-1 cutting, 1d impaling;
         Spear: 1d+3 impaling. Acc = 2, SS = 11,
                1/2 damage at 13 yds., Max = 19 yds.

Arucos' Personal Guard

Ten warriors as above, except that, instead of Spear and Shield skills, they have the skill Bow-18 (Short Bow: 1d impaling; Acc = 1, SS = 12, 1/2 damage at 130 yds., Max = 195 yds.).


The Ilergetes are one of the fiercest Spanish tribes. They are rather angry with the Turdetanians for trespassing their lands, but they don't have enough warriors to fight them out.

Ilergete Warrior

ST 12, DX 13, IQ 10, HT 11
Basic Speed 6, Move 6
Dodge 5, Parry 7, Block 6
Light leather armor (PD 1, DR 1), small shield, light encumbrance
Skills: Shortsword-15, Spear Throwing-16, Shield-12, Stealth-14.
Weapons: Shortsword 1d+2 cutting, 1d-1 impaling;
         Spear: 1d+2 impaling. Acc = 2, SS = 11,
                1/2 damage at 12 yds., Max = 18 yds.

Historical Aftermath

The Gold of Tolosa was never found. One year later, Caepio was one of the commanders in Arausio, when the Germans annihilated a Roman army of eighty thousand men. In 103 BC, helped by Regino, he fled Rome to Smyrna, where he died some years later, or died while awaiting trial, according to some sources. Some authors of the period, as Strabo, attribute his trial and exile to his sacrilege in robbing the treasure of the Celtic Apollo.
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