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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 XII - Religion, Culture, Literature, and Art


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Page 71

Valerius Antias

Lastly, Valerius Antias excelled all his predecessors in prolixity as well as in puerile story-telling. The falsification of numbers was here systematically carried out down even to contemporary history, and the primitive history of Rome was elaborated once more from one form of insipidity to another; for instance the narrative of the way in which the wise Numa according to the instructions of the nymph Egeria caught the gods Faunus and Picus; with wine, and the beautiful conversation thereupon held by the same Numa with the god Jupiter, cannot be too urgently recommended to all worshippers of the so-called legendary history of Rome in order that, if possible, they may believe these things--of course, in substance.

It would have been a marvel if the Greek novel-writers of this period had allowed such materials, made as if for their use, to escape them. In fact there were not wanting Greek literati, who worked up the Roman history into romances; such a composition, for instance, was the Five Books "Concerning Rome" of the Alexander Polyhistor already mentioned among the Greek literati living in Rome,(31) a preposterous mixture of vapid historical tradition and trivial, principally erotic, fiction.

31. Cf. V. XII. Greek Literati in Rome

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