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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


V. The Establishment of the Military Monarchy

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 X - Brundisium, Ilerda, Pharsalus, and Thapsus


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Page 110

Calvinus Defeated at Nicopolis - Victory of Caesar at Ziela

In an engagement at Nicopolis the Pontic levy of Calvinus was cut to pieces and the Galatian legions ran off; only the one old legion of the Romans fought its way through with moderate loss. Instead of conquering Lesser Armenia, Calvinus could not even prevent Pharnaces from repossessing himself of his Pontic "hereditary states," and pouring forth the whole vials of his horrible sultanic caprices on their inhabitants, especially the unhappy Amisenes (winter of 706-707).

When Caesar in person arrived in Asia Minor and intimated to him that the service which Pharnaces had rendered to him personally by having granted no help to Pompeius could not be taken into account against the injury inflicted on the empire, and that before any negotiation he must evacuate the province of Pontus and send back the property which he had pillaged, he declared himself doubtless ready to submit; nevertheless, well knowing how good reason Caesar had for hastening to the west, he made no serious preparations for the evacuation. He did not know that Caesar finished whatever he took in hand.

Without negotiating further, Caesar took with him the one legion which he brought from Alexandria and the troops of Calvinus and Deiotarus, and advanced against the camp of Pharnaces at Ziela. When the Bosporans saw him approach, they boldly crossed the deep mountain-ravine which covered their front, and charged the Romans up the hill. Caesar's soldiers were still occupied in pitching their camp, and the ranks wavered for a moment; but the veterans accustomed to war rapidly rallied and set the example for a general attack and for a complete victory (2 Aug. 707). In five days the campaign was ended--an invaluable piece of good fortune at this time, when every hour was precious.

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