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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


III. From the Union of Italy to the Subjugation of Carthage and the Greek States

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 III - The Extension of Italy to Its Natural Boundaries


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Page 13

Tenths and Customs - Communities Exempted

But, side by side with this essential equality of rights, there was established a distinction, very important in its effects, between the Italian communities on the one hand and the transmarine communities on the other. While the treaties concluded with the Italian towns imposed on them a fixed contingent for the army or the fleet of the Romans, such a contingent was not imposed on the transmarine communities, with which no binding paction was entered into at all, but they lost the right of arms,(8) with the single exception that they might be employed on the summons of the Roman praetor for the defence of their own homes.

8. This is implied in Hiero's expression (Liv. xxii. 37): that he knew that the Romans made use of none but Roman or Latin infantry and cavalry, and employed "foreigners" at most only among the light-armed troops.

The Roman government regularly sent Italian troops, of the strength which it had fixed, to the islands; in return for this, a tenth of the field-produce of Sicily, and a toll of 5 per cent on the value of all articles of commerce exported from or imported into the Sicilian harbours, were paid to Rome. To the islanders these taxes were nothing new. The imposts levied by the Persian great-king and the Carthaginian republic were substantially of the same character with that tenth; and in Greece also such a taxation had for long been, after Oriental precedent, associated with the -tyrannis- and often also with a hegemony.

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