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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 VI - The War under Hannibal from Cannae to Zama


The Original Greek New Testament

» Contents of this Chapter

Page 62

Superiority of the Romans - Tarentum Capitulates

Immense was the impression produced by the fall of Capua, and all the more that it had not been brought about by surprise, but by a two years' siege carried on in spite of all the exertions of Hannibal. It was quite as much a token that the Romans had recovered their ascendency in Italy, as its defection some years before to Hannibal had been a token that that ascendency was lost. In vain Hannibal had tried to counteract the impression of this news on his allies by the capture of Rhegium or of the citadel of Tarentum. His forced march to surprise Rhegium had yielded no result.

The citadel of Tarentum suffered greatly from famine, after the Tarentino-Carthaginian squadron closed the harbour; but, as the Romans with their much more powerful fleet were able to cut off the supplies from that squadron itself, and the territory, which Hannibal commanded, scarce sufficed to maintain his army, the besiegers on the side next the sea suffered not much less than did the besieged in the citadel, and at length they left the harbour. No enterprise was now successful; Fortune herself seemed to have deserted the Carthaginians.

These consequences of the fall of Capua--the deep shock given to the respect and confidence which Hannibal had hitherto enjoyed among the Italian allies, and the endeavours made by every community that was not too deeply compromised to gain readmission on tolerable terms into the Roman symmachy --affected Hannibal much more keenly than the immediate loss.

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