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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 VII - The Revolt of the Italian Subjects, and the Sulpician Revolution


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Page 34

Umbro-Etruscan Conflicts

Lastly, there was added in the course of the year to the two difficult and straggling wars in southern and central Italy a third in the north. The state of matters apparently so dangerous for Rome after the first months of the war had induced a great portion of the Umbrian, and isolated Etruscan, communities to declare for the insurrection; so that it became necessary to despatch against the Umbrians Aulus Plotius, and against the Etruscans Lucius Porcius Cato. Here however the Romans encountered a far less energetic resistance than in the Marsian and Samnite countries, and maintained a most decided superiority in the field.

Disadvantageous Aggregate Result of the First Year of the War

Thus the severe first year of the war came to an end, leaving behind it, both in a military and political point of view, sorrowful memories and dubious prospects. In a military point of view both armies of the Romans, the Marsian as well as the Campanian, had been weakened and discouraged by severe defeats; the northern army had been compelled especially to attend to the protection of the capital, the southern army at Neapolis had been seriously threatened in its communications, as the insurgents could without much difficulty break forth from the Marsian or Samnite territory and establish themselves between Rome and Naples; for which reason it was found necessary to draw at least a chain of posts from Cumae to Rome.

In a political point of view, the insurrection had gained ground on all sides during this first year of the war; the secession of Nola, the rapid capitulation of the strong and large Latin colony of Venusia, and the Umbro-Etruscan revolt were suspicious signs that the Roman symmachy was tottering to its very base and was not in a position to hold out against this last trial. They had already made the utmost demands on the burgesses; they had already, with a view to form that chain of posts along the Latino-Campanian coast, incorporated nearly 6000 freedmen in the burgess-militia; they had already required the severest sacrifices from the allies that still remained faithful; it was not possible to draw the string of the bow any tighter without hazarding everything.

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