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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 V - The War under Hannibal to the Battle of Cannae


The Original Greek New Testament

» Contents of this Chapter

Page 11

Military and Political Position of Hannibal

No extraordinary exertions were made in Rome for the campaign of 537. The senate thought, and not unreasonably, that, despite the lost battle, their position was by no means fraught with serious danger. Besides the coast garrisons, which were despatched to Sardinia, Sicily, and Tarentum, and the reinforcements which were sent to Spain, the two new consuls Gaius Flaminius and Gnaeus Servilius obtained only as many men as were necessary to restore the four legions to their full complement; additions were made to the strength of the cavalry alone.

The consuls had to protect the northern frontier, and stationed themselves accordingly on the two highways which led from Rome to the north, the western of which at that lime terminated at Arretium, and the eastern at Ariminum; Gaius Flaminius occupied the former, Gnaeus Servilius the latter. There they ordered the troops from the fortresses on the Po to join them, probably by water, and awaited the commencement of the favourable season, when they proposed to occupy in the defensive the passes of the Apennines, and then, taking up the offensive, to descend into the valley of the Po and effect a junction somewhere near Placentia.

But Hannibal by no means intended to defend the valley of the Po. He knew Rome better perhaps than the Romans knew it themselves, and was very well aware how decidedly he was the weaker and continued to be so notwithstanding the brilliant battle on the Trebia; he knew too that his ultimate object, the humiliation of Rome, was not to be wrung from the unbending Roman pride either by terror or by surprise, but could only be gained by the actual subjugation of the haughty city.

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