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Three Millennia of Greek Literature
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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


II. From the Abolition of the Monarchy in Rome to the Union of Italy

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

CHAPTER IX - Art and Science


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Page 24

That the fable of Aeneas was nevertheless of comparatively recent origin in Italy, is shown by the extremely scanty measure of its localization as compared with the legend of Odysseus; and at any rate the final redaction of these tales, as well as their reconciliation with the legend of the origin of Rome, belongs only to the following age.

While in this way historical composition, or what was so called among the Greeks, busied itself in its own fashion with the prehistoric times of Italy, it left the contemporary history of Italy almost untouched--a circumstance as significant of the sunken condition of Greek history, as it is to be for our sakes regretted. Theopompus of Chios (who ended his work with 418) barely noticed in passing the capture of Rome by the Celts; and Aristotle,(21) Clitarchus,(22) Theophrastus,(23) Heraclides of Pontus (about 450), incidentally mention particular events relating to Rome.

21. Cf. II. IV. Fruitlessness of the Celtic Victory

22. Cf. II. VII. Relations between the East and West

23. Cf. II. VII. The Roman Fleet

It is only with Hieronymus of Cardia, who as the historian of Pyrrhus narrated also his Italian wars, that Greek historiography becomes at the same time an authority for the history of Rome.

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