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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 IX - Cinna and Sulla


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Page 28

The summons to trust themselves to the sea at that unfavourable season of the year provoked among the already dissatisfied troops in the head-quarters at Ancona a mutiny, to which Cinna fell a victim (beg. of 670); whereupon his colleague Carbo found himself compelled to bring back the divisions that had already crossed and, abandoning the idea of taking up the war in Greece, to enter into winter-quarters in Ariminum. But Sulla's offers met no better reception on that account; the senate rejected his proposals without even allowing the envoys to enter Rome, and enjoined him summarily to lay down arms. It was not the coterie of the Marians which primarily brought about this resolute attitude.

That faction was obliged to abandon its hitherto usurped occupation of the supreme magistracy at the very time when it was of moment, and again to institute consular elections for the decisive year 671. The suffrages on this occasion were united not in favour of the former consul Carbo or of any of the able officers of the hitherto ruling clique, such as Quintus Sertorius or Gaius Marius the younger, but in favour of Lucius Scipio and Gaius Norbanus, two incapables, neither of whom knew how to fight and Scipio not even how to speak; the former of these recommended himself to the multitude only as the great-grandson of the conqueror of Antiochus, and the latter as a political opponent of the oligarchy.(11)

11. Cf. IV. VI. The Equestrian Party

The Marians were not so much abhorred for their misdeeds as despised for their incapacity; but if the nation would have nothing to do with these, the great majority of it would have still less to do with Sulla and an oligarchic restoration. Earnest measures of self-defence were contemplated. While Sulla crossed to Asia and induced such defection in the army of Fimbria that its leader fell by his own hand, the government in Italy employed the further interval of a year granted to it by these steps of Sulla in energetic preparations; it is said that at Sulla's landing 100,000 men, and afterwards even double that number of troops, were arrayed in arms against him.

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