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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 VII - The West from the Peace of Hannibal to the Close of the Third Period


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Page 12


In Africa the policy of Rome was substantially summed up in the one idea, as short-sighted as it was narrow-minded, that she ought to prevent the revival of the power of Carthage, and ought accordingly to keep the unhappy city constantly oppressed and apprehensive of a declaration of war suspended over it by Rome like the sword of Damocles.

The stipulation in the treaty of peace, that the Carthaginians should retain their territory undiminished, but that their neighbour Massinissa should have all those possessions guaranteed to him which he or his predecessor had possessed within the Carthaginian bounds, looks almost as if it had been inserted not to obviate, but to provoke disputes.

The same remark applies to the obligation imposed by the Roman treaty of peace on the Carthaginians not to make war upon the allies of Rome; so that, according to the letter of the treaty, they were not even entitled to expel their Numidian neighbours from their own undisputed territory. With such stipulations and amidst the uncertainty of African frontier questions in general, the situation of Carthage in presence of a neighbour equally powerful and unscrupulous and of a liege lord who was at once umpire and party in the cause, could not but be a painful one; but the reality was worse than the worst expectations.

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