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Livy: Periochae 21-22


Titus Livius or Livy (59 BCE - 17 CE): Roman historian, author of the authorized version of the history of the Roman republic. Many of the 142 books of  the History of Rome from its beginning are now lost; however, we do have an excerpt, the Periochae.
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Ex libro XXI

Belli Punici secundi ortum narrat et Hannibalis, ducis Poenorum, contra foedus per Hiberum flumen transitum. A quo Saguntum, sociorum populi R. civitas, obsessa octavo mense capta est. De quibus iniuriis missi legati ad Carthaginienses, qui quererentur. Cum satis facere nollent, bellum his indictum est.

Hannibal superato Pyrenaeo saltu per Gallias, fusis Volcis (qui obsistere conati erant ei) ad Alpes venit et laborioso per eas transitu, cum montanos quoque Gallos obvios aliquot proeliis reppulisset, descendit in Italiam et ad Ticinum flumen Romanos equestri proelio fudit. In quo vulneratum P. Cornelium Scipionem protexit filius, qui Africani postea nomen accepit.

Iterumque exercitu Romano ad flumen Trebiam fuso Hannibal Apenninum quoque permagna vexatione militum propter vim tempestatium transiit.

Cn. Cornelius Scipio in Hispania contra Poenos prospere pugnavit duce hostium Magone capto.

From book 21

It [book 21] tells about the beginning of the Second Punic War, and how Hannibal, the Carthaginian leader, crossed the river Ebro and violated the treaty. [218 BCE] He besieged Saguntum, a Roman ally, and took it in the eighth month. Because of these violations, envoys were sent to the Carthaginians, to ask for an explanation.When they refused satisfaction, war was declared.

Hannibal crossed the Pyrenees, traversed Gaul, defeated the Volcians (who tried to stop him), arrived at the Alps, had a difficult crossing [more...] of this mountain range, in which he several times had to rout Gallic mountain tribes, descended to Italy, and defeated the Romans in an equestrian battle near the river Ticinus. In this battle, Publius Cornelius Scipio was wounded but saved by his son, who later accepted the surnamed Africanus.

Hannibal defeated a second Roman army near the river Trebia, and crossed the Apennines. Tempests caused great problems for the soldiers.

In Hispania, Gnaeus Cornelius Scipio successfully fought against the Carthagians, and captured the leader of the enemies, Mago.

Ex libro XXII

Hannibal per continuas vigilias in paludibus oculo amisso in Etruriam venit, per quas paludes quadriduo et tribus noctibus sine ulla requie iter fecit.

C. Flaminius cos., homo temerarius, contra auspicia profectus signis militaribus effossis, quae tolli non poterant, et ab equo, quem conscenderat, per caput devolutus, insidiis ab Hannibale circumventus ad Thrasymennum lacum cum exercitu caesus est. Sex milia, quae eruperant, fide ab Atherbale data, perfidia Hannibalis vincta sunt. Cum ad nuntium cladis Romae luctus esset, duae matres ex insperato receptis filiis gaudio mortuae sunt. Ob hanc cladem ex Sibyllinis libris ver sacrum votum.

Cum deinde Q. Fabius Maximus dictator adversus Hannibalem missus nollet acie cum eo confligere, ne contra ferocem tot victoriis hostem adversis proeliis milites pugnare committeret, et opponendo se tantum conatus Hannibalis impediret, M. Minucius, magister equitum, ferox et temerarius, criminando dictatorem tamquam segnem et timidum effecit, ut populi iussu aequaretur ei cum dictatore imperium; divisoque exercitu cum iniquo loco conflixisset et in magno discrimine legiones eius essent, superveniente cum exercitu Fabio Maximo discrimine liberatus est. Quo beneficio victus castra cum eo iunxit et patrem eum salutavit, idemque facere milites iussit.

Hannibal vastata Campania inter Casilinum oppidum et Calliculam montem a Fabio clusus sarmentis ad cornua boum alligatis et incensis praesidium Romanorum, quod Calliculam insidebat, fugavit et sic transgressus est saltum. Idemque Q. Fabi Maximi dictatoris, cum circumposita ureret, agro pepercit, ut illum tamquam proditorem suspectum faceret.

Aemilio deinde Paulo et Terentio Varrone coss. et ducibus cum magna clade adversus Hannibalem ad Cannas pugnatum est, caesaque eo proelio Romanorum XLV milia cum Paulo cos. et senatoribus XC et consularibus aut praetoriis aut aediliciis XXX.

Post quae cum a nobilibus adulescentibus propter desperationem consilium de relinquenda Italia iniretur, P. Cornelius Scipio tribunus militum (qui Africanus postea vocatus est) stricto supra capita deliberantium ferro iuravit pro hoste se habiturum eum, qui in verba sua non iurasset, effecitque ut omnes non relictum iri a se Italiam iureiurando adstringerentur.

Propter paucitatem militum VIII milia servorum armata sunt. Captivi, cum potestas esset redimendi, redempti non sunt.

Praeterea trepidationem urbis et luctum et res in Hispania meliore eventu gestas continet.

Opimia et Florentia, virgines Vestales, incesti damnatae sunt.

Varroni obviam itum et gratiae actae, quod de re p. non desperasset.

From book 22

[217] Losing much sleep in the marshes, Hannibal lost an eye, but he arrived in Etruria, having been marching without interruption through those marshes for four days and three nights.

Consul Gaius Flaminius, a headstrong man, proceeded against the enemy, in spite of bad omens and although he had had to order the military standards, which could not be moved, to be dug out, and although the horse he had mounted had thrown him over the head. He was ambushed by Hannibal near the Trasimene lake, and massacred with his army. Six thousand men who had broken out were chained by the perfidity of Hannibal, although Atherbal [=Maharbal] had given his word. There was general mourning because of this disaster, but two mothers died of joy when they discovered that their sons, who they believed to be dead, were still alive. Because of this disaster, on the authority of the Sibylline books, a Sacred Spring was decreed.

Dictator Quintus Fabius Maximus was sent out against Hannibal, but refused to offer battle because he did not want to force his already defeated soldiers to fight against the violence of victorious enemy, and was content to impede Hannibal's progress and block his way; but Marcus Minucius, his aggressive and headstrong master of horse, persuaded the people that his own powers should be equal to those of the dictator, whom he charged with sluggishness and timidity; on an unfavorable place, he offered battle with his part of the divided army, and his legions were in great danger, but were saved when Fabius Maximus arrived with his part of the army. After this happy outcome, Minucius joined camp with the dictator and saluted him as his father, ordering his soldiers to do the same.

Hannibal laid waste Campania and was blocked by Fabius between the town of Casilinum and Mount Callicula, but Hannibal attached and lighted twigs on the horns of cows, which frightened the Roman garrison at Callicula. It fled and Hannibal marched over the pass. He also spared the land of dictator Quintus Fabius Maximus, although he burned the entire countryside, so that his opponent was suspected of treason.

[216] After this, Aemilius Paullus and Terentius Varro became consul and under their leadership, a large defeat was suffered against Hannibal, at Cannae, in which forty-five thousand Romans were killed, including consul Paullus, ninety senators, and thirty former consuls, praetors, or aediles.

Now, some desperate young noblemen were plotting to leave Italy, but military tribune Publius Cornelius Scipio (who was later called Africanus), held his drawn sword over their heads and announced that he would consider everyone an enemy who would not swear what he dictated, and forced them to promise never to abandon Italy.

Because of manpower shortage, eight thousand slaves were armed. Prisoners of war were not bought free, although there was an opportunity.

It [book 22] also contains accounts of panic and grief in the city, and fights in Hispania with a successful outcome.

Vestal virgins Opimia and Florentia were condemned for unchastity.

People went out to greet and thank Varro, because he had not despaired about the state.

to the Periochae of books 23-25
 
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