Romulus, Remus, and the Founding of Rome



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Romulus, Remus, and the Founding of Rome
(Livy, Ab Urbe Condita I, 4—7)


People




Places and Things




Rea Silvia

daughter of Numitor, forced to become a Vestal Virgin

Alba Longa

very old town in Italy, founded by Aeneas’s son Ascanius

Mars

Roman god of war

Tiber

river in Latium (central Italy)

Numitor

king of Alba Longa, deposed by his brother Amulius

Ficus Ruminalis

The fig-tree near which the twins were found

Amulius

evil brother of Numitor; takes the power in Alba Longa by force

Lupercalia

ancient (and wild) festival for young men

Faustulus

shepherd who finds Romulus and Remus

Palatine

one of the seven hills of later Rome

Lycaean Pan

Wolfman’ Pan, Greek shepherd god (half man, half goat)

Aventine

another of the seven hills of later Rome







Lavinium

very old town in Italy, founded by the Trojan Aeneas


[4.1] Sed debebatur, ut opinor, fatis tantae origo urbis maximique secundum deorum opes imperii principium. Vi compressa Vestalis cum geminum partum edidisset, seu ita rata seu quia deus auctor culpae honestior erat, Martem incertae stirpis patrem nuncupat. Sed nec di nec homines aut ipsam aut stirpem a crudelitate regia vindicant: sacerdos vincta in custodiam datur, pueros in profluentem aquam mitti iubet.


[4.2] Forte quadam divinitus super ripas Tiberis effusus lenibus stagnis nec adiri usquam ad iusti cursum poterat amnis et posse quamvis languida mergi aqua infantes spem ferentibus dabat. Ita velut defuncti regis imperio in proxima alluvie ubi nunc ficus Ruminalis est—Romularem vocatam ferunt—pueros exponunt. Vastae tum in his locis solitudines erant.



Marble statue of the Roman god Mars.
[4.3] Tenet fama cum fluitantem alveum, quo expositi erant pueri, tenuis in sicco aqua destituisset, lupam sitientem ex montibus qui circa sunt ad puerilem vagitum cursum flexisse; eam submissas infantibus adeo mitem praebuisse mammas ut lingua lambentem pueros magister regii pecoris invenerit— Faustulo fuisse nomen ferunt—ab eo ad stabula Larentiae uxori educandos datos.
[4.4] Sunt qui Larentiam volgato corpore lupam inter pastores vocatam putent; inde locum fabulae ac miraculo datum.
[4.5] Ita geniti itaque educati, cum primum adolevit aetas, nec in stabulis nec ad pecora segnes venando peragrare saltus. Hinc robore corporibus animisque sumpto iam non feras tantum subsistere sed in latrones praeda onustos impetus facere pastoribusque rapta dividere et cum his crescente in dies grege iuvenum seria ac iocos celebrare.





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