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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


IV. The Revolution

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 Peoples of the North


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Page 48

But the general had to leave behind a legion on the other bank, and the cowardly tribune who led it was already disposed to capitulate, when the centurion Gnaeus Petreius of Atina, struck him down and cut his way through the midst of the enemy to the main army on the right bank of the Adige. Thus the army, and in some degree even the honour of their arms, was saved; but the consequences of the neglect to occupy the passes and of the too hasty retreat were yet very seriously felt Catulus was obliged to withdraw to the right bank of the Po and to leave the whole plain between the Po and the Alps in the power of the Cimbri, so that communication was maintained with Aquileia only by sea.

This took place in the summer of 652, about the same time when the decisive battle between the Teutones and the Romans occurred at Aquae Sextiae. Had the Cimbri continued their attack without interruption, Rome might have been greatly embarrassed; but on this occasion also they remained faithful to their custom of resting in winter, and all the more, because the rich country, the unwonted quarters under the shelter of a roof, the warm baths, and the new and abundant supplies for eating and drinking invited them to make themselves comfortable for the moment.

Thereby the Romans gained time to encounter them with united forces in Italy. It was no season to resume--as the democratic general would perhaps otherwise have done--the interrupted scheme of conquest in Gaul, such as Gaius Gracchus had probably projected. From the battle-field of Aix the victorious army was conducted to the Po; and after a brief stay in the capital, where Marius refused the triumph offered to him until he had utterly subdued the barbarians, he arrived in person at the united armies. In the spring of 653 they again crossed the Po, 50,000 strong, under the consul Marius and the proconsul Catulus, and marched against the Cimbri, who on their part seem to have marched up the river with a view to cross the mighty stream at its source.

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