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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 42

The Route to the Ebro Closed

Early in the morning of the third day Caesar's infantry set out, that by a movement through the pathless mountains alongside of the road they might turn the position of the enemy and bar their route to the Ebro. The object of the strange march, which seemed at first to turn back towards the camp before Ilerda, was not at once perceived by the Pompeian officers. When they discerned it, they sacrificed camp and baggage and advanced by a forced march along the highway, to gain the crest of the ridge before the Caesarians. But it was already too late; when they came up, the compact masses of the enemy were already posted on the highway itself.

A desperate attempt of the Pompeians to discover other routes to the Ebro over the steep mountains was frustrated by Caesar's cavalry, which surrounded and cut to pieces the Lusitanian troops sent forth for that purpose. Had a battle taken place between the Pompeian army-- which had the enemy's cavalry in its rear and their infantry in front, and was utterly demoralized--and the Caesarians, the issue was scarcely doubtful, and the opportunity for fighting several times presented itself; but Caesar made no use of it, and, not without difficulty, restrained the impatient eagerness for the combat in his soldiers sure of victory. The Pompeian army was at any rate strategically lost; Caesar avoided weakening his army and still further envenoming the bitter feud by useless bloodshed.

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