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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 49

Perseverance of the Samnites

We see only--and this fact points to an internal breaking up of Italia, that must certainly have been attended by violent convulsions--that the Samnites, perhaps under the leadership of the Marsian Quintus Silo who had been from the first the soul of the insurrection and after the capitulation of the Marsians had gone as a fugitive to the neighbouring people, now assumed another organization purely confined to their own land, and, after "Italia" was vanquished, undertook to continue the struggle as "Safini" or Samnites.(18)

18. The rare -denarii- with -Safinim- and -G. Mutil- in Oscan characters must belong to this period; for, as long as the designation -Italia- was retained by the insurgents, no single canton could, as a sovereign power, coin money with its own name.

The strong Aesernia was converted from the fortress that had curbed, into the last retreat that sheltered, Samnite freedom; an army assembled consisting, it was said, of 30,000 infantry and 1000 cavalry, and was strengthened by the manumission and incorporation of 20,000 slaves; five generals were placed at its head, among whom Silo was the first and Mutilus next to him.

With astonishment men saw the Samnite wars beginning anew after a pause of two hundred years, and the resolute nation of farmers making a fresh attempt, just as in the fifth century, after the Italian confederation was shattered, to force Rome with their own hand to recognize their country's independence. But this resolution of the bravest despair made not much change in the main result; although the mountain-war in Samnium and Lucania might still require some time and some sacrifices, the insurrection was nevertheless already substantially at an end.

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