Obrazy na stronie

Romans who had taken possession of it to retire, it was thought necessary to humble them first. The Antiates had joined the Latins and Hernici near Satricum ; so that the Romans, being appalled at their prodigious numbers, showed themselves backward to engage; which Camillus perceiving, he mounted his horse, and riding through all the ranks of the army, encouraged them by a suitable harangue; after which he dismounted, took the next standard bearer by the hand, and led him towards the enemy, crying out, Soldiers, advance. The soldiery now fell on the enemy with incredible fury. Camillus, to increase their eagerness, commanded a standard to be thrown into the middle of the enemy's battalions; which made those who were fighting in the first ranks, exert all their resolution to recover it The Antiates gave way, and were entirely defeated : the Latins and Hernici separated from the Volsci, and returned home : while the Volsci, seeing themselves abandoned by their allies, took refuge in the city of Satricum; which Camillus immediately invested, and took by assault, when the Volsci surrendered at discretion. He then left his army under the command of Valerius; and returned to Rome to solicit the consent of the senate, and make the necessary o for the siege of Antium. But, while e was proposing this affair, deputies arrived from Nepet and Sutrium, cities in alliance with Rome, demanding succors against the Etrurians, who threatened to besiege them. Hereupon the expedition against Amtium was laid aside, and Camillus commanded to hasten to the relief of the allied cities, with the troops which Servilius had at Rome. Camillus immediately set out for the new war; and, upon his arrival before Sutrium, found it not only besieged but almost taken, the Etrurians having made themselves masters of some of the gates, and all the avenues of the city. But the inhabitants hearing that Camillus was come, recovered their courage, and, by barricadoes in the streets, prevented the enemy from making themselves masters of the whole. Camillus, dividing his army into two bodies, ordered Valerius to march round the walls, while he charged the Etrurians in the rear; on which the latter betook themselves to flight through a gate which was not invested. Camillus's troops made a dreadful slaughter of them within the city, while Valerius made equal havoc without the walls. Camillus hastened to the relief of Nepet, which had submitted to the Etrurians. He took it by assault, put all the Etrurian soldiers to the sword, and condemned the authors of the revolt to die by the axes of the lictors. Thus ended Camillus's military tribuneship, in which he acquired no less reputation than he had done in the most glorious of his dictatorships. In the following magistracy of six military tribunes, a dangerous sedition is said to have taken place through the ambition of Marcus Manlius, who had saved the capitol from the Gauls. He envied Camillus, magnified his own exploits beyond those of the dictator, concerted measures with the tribunes, and strove to gain the affections of the multitude by advocating the Agrarian law, and that for the relief of insolvent

debtors, of whom there was now a great number. The senate, alarmed at this opposition, created A. Cornelius Cossus dictator, for which the war with the Volsci afforded them a fair pretence. Manlius still continued to inflame the people against the patricians. Besides the most un bounded personal generosity, he held assemblies at his own house (in the citadel) where he slandered the senators, affirming that they appropriated to their own use all the gold which was to have been paid to the Gauls. Upon this he was committed to prison; but the people made such disturbance that the senate released him. At last he was publicly accused of aspiring to be king; but the Romans, grateful for his traving delivered the capitol, could not condemn him. The military tribunes, however, having appointed the assembly to be held without the city, obtained their wish ; and Manlius was thrown headlong from the capitol; the people, who lamented his fate, imputing a plague, which broke out soon after, to the anger of the gods on that aCCOunt. The Romans, having now triumphed over the Sabines, the Etrurians, the Latins, the Hernici, the AEqui, and the Volscians, began to look for greater conquests. They accordingly turned their arms against the Samnites, a people about 100 miles east from the city, descended from the Sabines, and inhabiting a large tract of southern Italy. Valerius Corvus and Cornelius were consuls. The first was one of the greatest commanders of his time, and surnamed Corvus, from the circumstance of being singularly assisted by a crow in a single combat, in which he fought and killed a Gaul of a gigantic stature. To his colleague's care it was consigned to lead an army to Samnium, the enemy's capital, while Corvus was sent to relieve Capua, the capital of the Campanians. The Samnites were the bravest men the Romans had ever yet encountered, and the contention between the two nations was managed on both sides with the most determined resolution. But the fortune of Rome prevailed; and the Samnites at length fled. The other consul, having led his army into a defile, was in danger of being cut off, had not Decius, a tribune, possessed himself of a hill which com

"manded the enemy; so that the Samnites, being

attacked on both sides, were defeated with great slaughter, no fewer than 30,000 of them being left dead upon the field. Some time after this victory, the soldiers who were stationed at Capua mutinying, forced Quintus, an old and eminent soldier, to be their leader; and came within eight miles of Rome. The senate immediately created Valerius Corvus dictator, and sent him with another detachment to oppose them. The two armies were now drawn up against each

other, while fathers and sons beheld themselves

prepared to engage in opposite causes; but Corvus, knowing his influence among the soldiers, instead of going forward to meet the mutineers in a hostile manner, went with the most cordial friendship to embrace and expostulate with his old acquaintances. His conduct had the desired effect. Quintus only desired to have their defection forgiven. A war between the Romans and Latins followed soon after; and as their

habits, arms, and language, were the same, the most exact discipline was necessary to prevent confusion in the engagement. Orders, therefore, were issued by the consul Manlius, that no soldier should leave his ranks under pain of death. With these injunctions, both armies were drawn out in array, when Metius, the general of the enemy's cavalry, pushed forward and challenged any knight in the Roman army to single combat. For some time there was a general pause, no soldier offering to disobey his orders, till Titus Manlius, the consul's son, burning with shame to see the whole body of the Romans intimidated, boldly sallied out against his adversary. Manlius killed his adversary; and, despoiling him of his armor, returned in triumph to his father's tent, where he was giving orders relative to the engagement. Doubtful of the reception he should find, he came, with hesitation, to lay the enemy's spoils at his feet, and insinuated that what he did was entirely from a spirit of hereditary virtue. But his father, turning away, ordered him to be led forth before the army, and there to have his head struck off on account of his disobeying orders. The whole army was struck with horror at this unnatural mandate; but when they saw their young champion's head struck off, and his blood streaming upon the ground, they could no longer contain their execrations. His dead body, adorned with the spoils of the vanquished enemy, was buried with all the pomp of military greatness. Mean time the battle joined with mutual fury; and, as the two armies had often fought under the same leaders, they combated with all the animosity of a civil war. The Latins chiefly depended on their bodily strength; the Romans on their invincible courage. Forces so nearly matched seemed only to require the protection of their deities to turn the scale of victory; and the augurs had foretold that, whatever part of the Roman army should be distressed, the commander of that part should devote himself for his country. Manlius commanded the right wing, and Decius led on the left. Both sides fought for some time with doubtful success, but at last the left wing of the Roman army began to give ground. Decius having resolved to devote himself for his country, and to offer his own life to save his army, after the usual superstitions, mounting on horseback, drove furiously into the midst of the enemy, carrying terror and consternation wherever he came. He fell covered with wounds. The Roman army considering this as an assurance of success, and the superstition of the Latins being equally influenced by his resolution, a total rout ensued, and scarcely a fourth part of the enemy survived the defeat. This was the last battle that the Latins had with the Romans; they were forced to beg a peace upon hard conditions; and two years after, their strongest city, Paedum, being taken, they were brought under final submission to the Roman power. About this time the Romans sustained a signal disgrace in their contests with the Samnites. The senate having denied that nation peace, Pontius their general resolved to gain by stratagem what he had frequently lost by force. Leading his army into a defile called Claudium, and taking possession of all its outlets, he sent

ten of his soldiers, habited like shepherds, to throw themselves in the way the Romans were to march. The consul met them, and demanded the route the Samnite army had taken; with seeming indifference they replied, that they were gone to Luceria, in Apulia, and were then besieging it. The Roman general marched directly by the shortest road, through the defiles, and was not undeceived till he saw his army surrounded. Pontius, thus having them entirely in his power, first obliged the Romans to pass under the yoke, stripped of all but their garments; he then stipulated that they should wholly quit the territories of the Samnites, and that they should continue to live upon terms of former confederacy. The Romans were constrained to submit to this treaty, and marched into Capua disarmed and half naked. But after this the power of the Samnites declined every day, while that of the Romans continually increased. Under Papirius Cursor, at different times consul and dictator, repeated triumphs were granted. Fabius Maximus also had his share in conquering them ; Decius, the son of Decius who devoted himself, followed the example of his father. See DEcIUS. The success of the Romans against the Samnites alarmed all Italy. The Tarentines, who had long plotted against the republic, now declared themselves; and invited into Italy Pyrrhus king of Epirus. The offer was readily accepted by that ambitious monarch. Their ambassadors carried magnificent presents, and told him that they only wanted a general of fame and experience; and that they could furnish 20,000 horse and 350,000 foot. As soon as the news of this deputation were brought to the Roman camp, AEmilius, who had hitherto made war on the Tarentines but gently, in hopes of adjusting matters by negociation, began to commit all sorts of hostilities. He took cities, stormed castles, and laid the whole country waste, burning and destroying all before him. The Tarentines brought their army into the field, but Æmilius obliged them to take refuge within their walls. However, he used the prisoners with great moderation, and even sent them back without ransom. These highly extolled the generosity of the consul, many of the inhabitants were brought over to the Roman party, and they all began to repent of their having sent for Pyrrhus. But, in the mean time, the Tarentine ambassadors arriving in Epirus, pursuant to the powers they had received, made an absolute treaty with the king; who sent before him the famous Cyneas, with 3000 men, to take possession of the citadel of Tarentum. This minister deposed Agis, whom the Tarentines had chosen to be their governor. He like- wise prevailed opon the Tarentines to deliver up the citadel into his hands; and sent messengers to Pyrrhus, pressing him to hasten his departure. Mean time, AEmilius resolved to quarter his troops in Apulia, near the territory of Tarentum. But being obliged to pass through defiles, with the sea on one side and hills on the other, he was attacked by the Tarentines and Epirots from barks fraught with balistae, and from archers and slingers on the hills. Hereupon AFmilius placed the Tarentine prisoners between him and

the enemy; which the Tarentines perceiving, soon left off, so that the Romans took up their winter quarters in Apulia. The next year A milius was continued in command with the title of proconsul ; and was ordered to make war upon the Salentines, who had declared for the Tarentines. The Romans now enlisted the proletarii, who were the meanest of the people, and had never before been suffered to bear arms. In the mean time Pyrrhus arrived at Tarentum, after having narrowly escaped shipwreck. The Tarentines, who were entirely devoted to their pleasures, expected that he should take all the fatigues of the war on himself, and expose only his Epirots to danger. But, his ships arriving one after another with his troops, he began to reform the disorders that prevailed. He shut up their theatre, public gardens, porticoes, and places of exercises, and prohibited all masquerades, plays, &c. They were utter strangers to military exercise; but Pyrrhus, having caused a register to be made of all the young men fit for war, picked out the strongest, and incorporated them among his own troops, exercising them daily for several hours. And because many, who had not been accustomed to such severity, left their native country, Pyrrhus, by a public proclamation, declared all such capitally guilty. In the mean time P. Valerius Laevinus, the Roman consul, entering the country of the Lucanians, who were in alliance with the Tarentines, committed great ravages there: and, having taken and fortified one of their castles, waited in that neighbourhood for Pyrrhus. Pyrrhus therefore took the field with his Epirots, some recruits of Tarentum, and other Italians; and marched towards those parts where Laevinus was waiting for him. The Romans were encamped on the other side of the river Siris; and Pyrrhus, appearing on the opposite bank, wished to reconnoitre the enemy's camp, and see what appearance they made. He crossed the river, attended by Megacles, and having observed the consul's intrenchments, the manner in which he had posted his advanced guards, and the good order of his camp, he was greatly surprised. On his return he changed his resolution of attacking them; and waited for the arrival of the confederates. In the mean time he posted strong guards along the river, and sent out scouts to watch the motions of the consul. Some of these being taken by the Romans, the consul led them through his camp, and, having showed them to his army, sent them back to the king, telling them that he had many other troops to show them in due time. Laevinius, being determined to draw the enemy to a battle before Pyrrhus received the reinforcements he expected, marched to the banks of the Siris; and there, drawing up his infantry in battalia, ordered the cavalry to file off, and march a great way about, to find a passage at some place not defended by the enemy. Accordingly they passed the river without being observed ; and, falling upon the guards which Pyrrhus had posted on the banks over against the consular army, gave the infantry an o of crossing the river on bridges which Laevinus had prepared. Before they got over Pyrrhus, hastening from his camp,

hoped to cut the Roman army in pieces while passing the river; but the cavalry covering the infantry, and standing between them and the Epirots, gave them time to form themselves. On the other hand Pyrrhus drew up his men as fast as they came from the camp, and performed such deeds of valor that the Romans found him worthy of the great reputation he had acquired. As the cavalry alone had hitherto engaged, Pyrrhus, who confided most in his infantry, hastened back to the camp, to bring them to the charge ; and, having changed habits with Megacles, led his phalanx against the Roman legions with incredible fury. Laevinus sustained the shock with great resolution, so that the victory was for many hours warmly disputed. Both parties several times gave way, but rallied again, and were brought back to the charge by their commanders. Megacles, in the attire of Pyrrhus, was in all places, and well supported the character he had assumed. But his disguise at last proved fatal to him : for a Roman knight, named Dexter, taking him for the king, followed him wherever he went; and at last killed him, stripped him of his armour, and carried it in triumph to the consul, who, by showing to the Epirots the spoils of their king, so terrified them that they began to give way. But Pyrrhus, appearing in the first files of his phalanx, and riding through all the lines, undeceived his men, and inspired them with new courage. The advantage seemed to be equal on both sides, when Laevinus ordered his cavalry to advance; which Pyrrhus observing drew up twenty elephants in the front of his army, with towers on their backs full of bowmen. The sight of these dreadful animals chilled the bravery of the Romans, who had never before seen any. However they still advanced, till their horses, unable to bear the smell of them, and frightened at the strange noise they made, threw their riders, or carried them on full speed. In the mean time the arehers, discharging showers of darts from the towers, killed many of the Romans, while others were trod to death by the elephants. Notwithstanding the disorder of the cavalry, the legionaries still kept their ranks, till Pyrrhus attacked them at the head of the Thessalian horse. The onset was so furious that they were forced to retire in disorder. But an elephant, which had been wounded, having caused a great disorder in Pyrrhus's army, this accident favored the retreat of the Romans, and

gave them time to repass the river, and take refuge in Apulia. Pyrrhus remained master of the

field, and had the pleasure to see the Romans

fly before him : but the victory cost him dear, a

great number of his best officers and soldiers

having been slain in the battle. His first care

after the action was to bury the dead, and herein

he made no distinction between the Romans and

his Epirots. Pyrrhus next broke into the coun

tries in alliance with the Romans, plundered the

lands of the republic, and made incursions even

into the neighbourhood of Rome. Many cities

opened their gates to him, and he soon made

himself master of the greatest part of Campania.

While in that fruitful province he was joined by

the Samnites, Lucanians, and Messapians, whom

he had long expected. He then marched to lay

siege to Capua; but Laevinus, having already received a reinforcement of two legions, threw some troops into the city; which obliged Pyrrhus to drop his design, and, leaving Capua, to march to Naples. Laevinus followed him, harassing his troops on their march; and at length, by keeping his army in the neighbourhood, forced him to give over all thoughts of attacking that city. The king then took his route towards Rome by the Latin way, surprised Fregella, and, marching through the country of the Hernici, sat down before Praeneste. There, from the top of a hill, he saw Rome. But he was soon forced to retire by the other consul T. Coruncanius, who, having reduced Etruria, was just returned with his victorious army to Rome. He therefore raised the siege of Praeneste, and hastened back into Campania; where, to his surprise, he found Laevinus with a more numerous army than that which he had defeated on the banks of the Siris. The consul went to meet him, to try the fate of another battle; but Pyrrhus, pretending that the auguries were not favorable, retired to Tarentum, and put an end to the campaign. To this city the Romans sent him an embassy, consisting of Cornelius Dolabella, who had conquered the Senones, Fabricius, and AEmilius Pappus, to demand a surrender of the prisoners, either by way of exchange, or at a proper ranson; for Pyrrhus had taken 1800 prisoners, most of them Roman knights and men of distinction. Pyrrhus was disappointed when he found that they did not come with proposals of peace, of which he was very desirous, but he treated them with magnificence. He released 200 of the prisoners without ransom, and suffered the rest, on their parole, to return to Rome to celebrate the Saturnalia. Having thus gained the good will of the ambassadors, he sent Cyneas to Rome with proposals of peace on these terms:–1. That the Tarentines should be included in the treaty. 2. That the Greek cities in Italy should enjoy their laws and liberties. 3. That the republic should restore to the Samnites, Lucanians, and Bruttians, all the places taken from them. By the eloquence of the ambassadors, together with well applied bribes, he nearly effected his errand; but Appius Claudius, blind as he was, came down to the senate, and his oratorial influence had the effect to determine that Rome would enter into no terms with Pyrrhus while he remained in Italy. This resolution they followed up by despatching the consuls P. Sulpicius Saverrio, and P. Decius Mus, into Apulia, where they found Pyrrhus encamped near Asculum. A battle ensued, in which Decius was slain, and Pyrrhus wounded and defeated, with the loss of many of his troops. Sulpicius appeared in the field next day; but, finding the Epirots had withdrawn to Tarentum, he put his troops into winter quarters in Apulia. Both armies, early in the spring, took the field anew. The Romans were commanded this year by the consuls C. Fabricius and Q. Homilius Pappus; who no sooner arrived in Apulia than they led their troops into the territory of Tarentum. Pyrrhus, who had received considerable reinforcements from Epirus, met them near the frontiers, and encamped at a small distance. While the

consuls were waiting for a favorable opportunity, a messenger from Nicias, the king's physician, delivered a letter to Fabricius; wherein the traitor offered to take off his master by poison for a suitable reward. The virtuous Roman immediately wrote to Pyrrhus, warning him, without discovering the criminal, to take care of himself, and to be upon his guard against the treacherous designs of those about him. Pyrrhus, out of gratitude, released immediately, without ransom, all the prisoners he had taken. But the Romans, disdaining to accept a recompense for not committing the blackest treachery, sent to Pyrrhus an equal number of Samnite and Tarentine prisoners. As the king of Epirus grew every day more weary of the war, he sent Cyneas again to Rome, to try if he could prevail upon the senate to harken to an accommodation upon terms consistent with honor, but in vain. Meantime ambassadors arrived at his camp from the Syracusians, Agrigentines, and Leontines, imploring his assistance to drive out the Carthaginians, who threatened their states with utter destruction. Pyrrhus, who wanted only some pretence to leave Italy, laid hold of this ; and, appointing Milo governor of Tarentum, with a strong garrison, he set sail for Sicily with 30,000 foot, and 25,000 horse, on board a fleet of 200 ships. Here he was at first attended with great success; but the Sicilians, disgusted at the enormous extortions of his ministers, had submitted partly to the Carthaginians, and partly to the Mamertines. When Carthage heard of this change, new troops were raised all over Africa, and a numerous army sent into Sicily to recover the cities which Pyrrhus had taken. As the Sicilians daily deserted from him, he was not in a condition, with his Epirots alone, to withstand so powefrul an enemy; and therefore, when deputies came to him from the Tarentines, Samnites, Bruttians, and Lucanians, representing to him that, without his assistance, they must fall a sacrifice to the Romans, he laid hold of that opnortunity to return to Italy. His fleet was attacked by that of Carthage; and his army, after their landing, by the Mamertines. But Pyrrhus having, by his bravery, escaped all danger, marched along the sea shore, to reach Tarentum that way. As he passed through the country of the Locrians, who had massacred the troops he had left there, he not only exercised all sorts of cruelty on the inhabitants, but plundered the temple of Proserpine. The immense riches which he found there were, by his order, sent to Tarentum by sea; but the ships that carried them being dashed against the rocks by a tempest, and the mariners all lost, this proud prince, considering it as a judgment from the gods, caused all the treasures which the sea had thrown upon the shore to be carefully gathered up, and replaced in the temple: and put all those to death who had advised him to plunder the temple. Pyrrhus at length arrived at Tarentum; but of the army he had carried into Sicily he brought back into Italy only 2000 horse and not 20,000 foot. He therefore reinforced them with the best troops he could raise in the countries of the Samnites, Lucanians, and Bruttians; and hearing that the two new consuls, Curius Dentatus and Cornelius Lentulus, had divided their forces, the one invading Lucania and the other Samnium, he likewise divided his army into two bodies, marching with his Epirots against Dentatus, in hopes of surprising him in his camp near Beneventum. But the consul went out of his entrenchments with a strong detachment of legionaries to meet him, repulsed his van-guard, put many. of the Epirots to the sword, and took some of their elephants. Curius then marched his army into the Taurasian fields, and drew it up in a plain wide enough for his own troops, but too narrow for the Epirot phalanx. But the king's eagerness to try his skill with so renowned a commander, made him engage at that great disadvantage; the consequence of which was that the Romans obtained a complete victory. Orosius and Eutropius tell us that Pyrrhus's army consisted of 80,000 foot and 6000 horse, including his Epirots and allies ; whereas the consular army was scarcely 20,000 strong. Some say that the king's loss amounted to 30,000 men; others reduce it to 20,000. All agree that Curius took 1200 prisoners and eight elephants. This victory, which was the most decisive Rome had ever gained, brought all Italy under subjection, and paved the way for those vast conquests which followed. Pyrrhus being not in a condition, after this great loss, to keep the field, retired to Tarentum, attended * by a small body of horse, leaving the Romans in full possession of his camp; which they so much admired that they made it ever after a model by which to form their own. And now he resolved to leave Italy, but concealed his design. Accordingly he despatched ambassadors into AEtolia, Illyricum, and Macedon, demanding supplies of men and inoney; and, having at last pretended to be in a great rage at the dilatoriness of his friends in sending him succors, acquainted the Tarentines that he must go and bring them over himself. However he left behind him a strong garrison in the citadel of Tarentum under Milo. After these precautions Pyrrhus set sail from Epirus, and arrived safe at Acroceraunium with 8000 foot and 500 horse; after having spent to no purpose six years in Italy and Sicily. Though, from the manner in which Pyrrhus took his leave, his Italian allies had little reason to expect any further assistance from him, yet they continued to indulge vain hopes, till certain accounts arrived of his being killed at the siege of Argos. This threw the Sainnites into despair: so that they put all to the issue of a general battle ; in which they were defeated with such dreadful slaughter that the nation was almost exterminated. This overthrow was soon followed by the submission of the Lucanians, Bruttians, Tarentines, Sarcinates, Picentes, and Salentines; so that Rome now became mistress of all the nations from the remotest parts of Etruria to the Ionian Sea, and from the Tyrrhenian Sea to the Adriatic. All these nations, however, did not enjoy the same privileges. Some were entirely subject to the republic; others retained their old laws and customs. Some were tributary; and others allies, who were obliged to furnish troops at their own expense, when the Romans required. Some had the privilege of Roman citizenship,

their soldiers being incorporated in the legions; while others had a right of suffrage in the elections made by the centuries. These different degrees of honor, privileges, and liberty, were founded on the different terms granted to the conquered nations when they surrendered, and were afterwards increased according to their fidelity, and the services they did the republic. The Romans now became respected by foreign nations, and received ambassadors from Ptolemy Philadelphus king of Egypt, and from Apollonia, a city of Macedon. Sensible of their own importance, they granted protection to whatever nation requested it of them; not with a view of serving one party, but that they might subject both. In this manner they assisted the Mamertines against Hiero, king of Syracuse, which brought on the wars with the Carthaginians, which terminated in the total destruction of that ancient republic, as related under CARTIIAG p. The interval between the first and second Punic wars was by the Romans employed in reducing the Boii and Ligurians, who had revolted. These were Gaulish nations, who had always been very formidable to the Romans, and now gave one of their consuls a notable defeat. However, he soon after defeated them with great slaughter; though it was not till some time after that, and with great difficulty, that they were totally subdued. During this interval, also, the Romans seized on the islands of Sardinia, Corsica, and Malta, and in 219 B. C. the two former were reduced to the form of a province. Papirius, who had subdued Corsica, do a triumph; but, not having interest enough to obtain it, he took a method entirely new to do himself justice.

He put himself at the head of his victorious army,

and marched to the temple of Jupiter Latialis, on the hill of Alba, with all the pomp that attended triumphant victors at Rome. He made no other alteration in the ceremony but that of wearing a crown of myrtle instead of a crown of laurel, and this on account of his having defeated the Corsicans in a place where there was a grove of myrtles. The example of Papirius was afterwards followed by many generals to whom the senate refused triumphs. The next year, when M. A.milius Barbula and M. Junius Pera were consuls, a new war sprung up in a kingdom out of Italy. Illyricum, which bordered upon Macedon and Epirus, was at this time governed by Teuta, the widow of king Agron, and guardian to her son Pinaeus, a minor. Her pirates had taken and plundered many ships belonging to the Romans, and her troops were then besieging the island of Issa, in the Adriatic whose inhabitants were under the protection of the public. Upon the complaints therefore of the Italian merchants, and to protect the people of Issa, the senate sent two ambassadors to the Illyrian queen, Lucius and Caius Coruncanus, to demand of her that she would restrain her subjects from infesting the sea with pirates. She answered them haughtily; they replied in a similar strain, which provoked Teuta to such a degree that she caused them to be murdered on their return. When so notorious an infraction of the law of nations was known at Rome, the

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