Via Claudia Augusta
The Via Claudia Augusta is an ancient Roman road, which linked the valley of the Po River with Rhaetia across the Alps. The route still exists, since the 1990s increased interest in long-distance hiking and cycling have made the German and Austrian stretches of the Via Claudia Augusta popular among tourists, with the result that modern signage identifies the revitalised track. Since 2007, the Giontech Archeological Site, in Mezzocorona/Kronmetz serves as the Via Claudia Augusta International Research Center with the support of the Foundation Piana Rotaliana and the Government of the City of Mezzocorona/Kronmetz. In 15 BC, the Roman general Nero Claudius Drusus, the stepson of Augustus, got orders from his stepfather to improve the passage through the Alps for military purposes and to increase Roman control over Rhaetia and Noricum; the project of converting a pack-animal trail to serve wheeled vehicles was completed sixty years in 46-47 AD by the son of Drusus, the Emperor Claudius. People and goods could pass between the Adriatic and the broad valley of the Po to Tridentum northward following the Adige River up to Pons Drusi, the "bridge of Drusus" which developed into Bolzano.
Thence it continued towards Maia, over the Reschen Pass. From the pass it descended through the valleys of the Inn River and the Lech, just beyond Augusta Vindelicorum, with an extension to Burghoefe, now Mertingen near the Danube river and not far from the present-day town of Donauwörth; this important road is called by modern-day German historians Donausüdstrasse. It served to secure the Roman northern frontier, marked until the end of the first century by the Danube river. Two milestones have been found, one at Rabland, a frazione of Partschins, near Merano in the South Tyrol and the other in Cesiomaggiore, near Belluno. Both are inscribed with the far terminus of Augusta Vindelicorum; the milestones indicate that two routes joined at Tridentium before crossing the Alpine pass: one found its starting point at the vicus of Ostiglia, near the Po, the other, its site less securely identified by archaeologists and historians, at the Adriatic port of Altinum. On its way to Tridentium, that route crossed the Via Annia, which linked Adria to Aquileia, the Via Popilia, which linked Altinum with Rimini, the Via Aurelia, between Padua and Feltre passing through Asolo, the Via Postumia, the road linking Genoa and Aquileia.
This road was initiated by Drusus as a military artery of conquest and defence, Emperor Claudius continued its development as a cultural and commercial artery with permanently populated posting stations where fresh horses would be available. Some grew into considerable settlements and were fortified during the Empire. Others can be identified only by the findings of archaeologists. In the 2nd century AD, a second Alpine pass was opened to the Brenner Pass. Today the Via Claudia Augusta is an important route used by cyclists to cross the Alps, it starts in branches near Trento into two routes. The first and correct route ends in Ostiglia, the second and more popular one in Venice. Donauwörth - Augsburg - Landsberg - Schongau - Füssen - Pflach - Lermoos - Fern Pass - Imst - Starkenbach - Zams - Landeck - Fließ - Prutz - Tösens - Pfunds - Finstermünz - Nauders - Reschen Pass - St. Valentin - Merano - Bolzano - Trento - Verona - Ostiglia alternatively Trento - Feltre - Altinum - Venice; the length of the trail is 700 kilometres.
As a special service there are bus shuttles that take bicycles and cyclists over both the Fern Pass and the Reschen Pass, which are the most demanding parts of the route. Omnes Viae The Brenner Pass route as found on the Peutinger map Via Claudia Augusta photographs Via Claudia Augusta in Tyrol Photographic Documentation of the Via Claudia Augusta between Königsbrunn and Epfach Photos and Route Description for Cyclists Via Claudia Augusta South Tyrol BicycleRoutes&Tours: Via Claudia Augusta Cycle Route, with map, GPS download, elevation chart and cyclist friendly accommodation
The Ligures were an Indo-European people who appear to have originated in, gave their name to, Liguria, a region of north-western Italy. Elements of the Ligures appear to have migrated to other areas of western Europe, including the Iberian peninsula. Little is known of the Old Ligurian language, the lack of inscriptions does not allow a certain linguistic classification: Pre-Indo-European or an Indo-European language; the problem is related to the lack of inscriptions, to the mysterious origin of the ancient Ligurian people. The linguistic hypotheses are based on toponyms and names of persons; because of the strong Celtic influences on their language and culture, they were known in antiquity as Celto-Ligurians. and it is believed, after a certain point, that Old Ligurian became an Indo-European language with strong Celtic affinities, as well as similarities to Italic languages. Only some proper names have survived, such as the inflectional suffix -asca or -asco "village". According to Plutarch, the Ligurians called themselves Ambrones, which could indicate a relationship with the Ambrones of northern Europe.
Strabo tells that they were of a different race from the Celts, who inhabited the rest of the Alps, though they resembled them in their mode of life. Aeschylus, in a fragment of Prometheus Unbound, represents Hercules as contending with the Ligures on the stony plains, near the mouths of the Rhone, Herodotus speaks of Ligures inhabiting the country above Massilia. Thucydides speaks of the Ligures having expelled the Sicanians, an Iberian tribe, from the banks of the river Sicanus, in Iberia; the Periplus of Pseudo-Scylax describes the Ligyes as living along the Mediterranean coast from Antion as far as the mouth of the Rhone and intermingled with the Iberians from the Rhone to Emporion in Spain. The Ligures seem to have been ready to engage as mercenary troops in the service of others. Ligurian auxiliaries are mentioned in the army of the Carthaginian general Hamilcar I in 480 BC. Greek leaders in Sicily continued to recruit Ligurian mercenary forces from the same quarter as late as the time of Agathocles.
The Ligures fought long and hard against the Romans, but as a result of these hostilities many were displaced from their homeland and assimilated into Roman culture during the 2nd century BC. Roman sources describe the Ligurians as smaller framed than the Gauls, but physically stronger, more ferocious and fiercer as warriors, hence their reputation as mercenary troops. Lucan in his Pharsalia described Ligurian tribes as being long-haired, their hair a shade of auburn:... Ligurian tribes, now shorn, in ancient days First of the long-haired nations, on whose necks Once flowed the auburn locks in pride supreme. People with Ligurian names were living south of Placentia, in Italy, as late as 102 AD. Traditional accounts suggested that the Ligures represented the northern branch of an ethno-linguistic layer older than, different from, the proto-Italic peoples, it was believed that a "Ligurian-Sicanian" culture occupied a wide area of southern Europe, stretching from Liguria to Sicily and Iberia. However, while any such area would be broadly similar to that of the paleo-European "Tyrrhenian culture" hypothesized by modern scholars, there are no known links between the Tyrrenians and Ligurians.
In the 19th century, the origins of the Ligures drew renewed attention from scholars. Amédée Thierry, a French historian, linked them to the Iberians, while Karl Müllenhoff, professor of Germanic antiquities at the Universities of Kiel and Berlin, studying the sources of the Ora maritima by Avienus, held that the name'Ligurians' generically referred to various peoples who lived in Western Europe, including the Celts, but thought the "real Ligurians" were a Pre-Indo-European population. Italian geologist and paleontologist Arturo Issel considered Ligurians to be direct descendants of the Cro-Magnon people that lived throughout Gaul from the Mesolithic period. Dominique-François-Louis Roget, Baron de Belloguet, claimed a "Gallic" origin of the Ligurians. During the Iron Age the spoken language, the main divinities and the workmanship of the artifacts unearthed in the area of Liguria were similar to those of Celtic culture in both style and type; those in favor of an Indo-European origin included Henri d'Arbois de Jubainville, a 19th-century French historian, who argued in Les Premiers habitants de l'Europe that the Ligurians were the earliest Indo-European speakers of Western Europe.
Jubainville's "Celto-Ligurian hypothesis", as it became known, was expanded in the second edition of his initial study. It inspired a body of contemporary philological research, as well as some archaeological work; the Celto-Ligurian hypothesis became associated with the Funnelbeaker culture and "expanded to cover much of Central Europe". Julius Pokorny adapted the Celto-Ligurian hypothesis into one linking the Ligures to the Illyrians, citing an array of similar evidence from Eastern Europe. Under this theory the "Ligures-Illyrians" became associated with the prehistoric Urnfield peoples. There are others such as Dominique Garcia, who question whether the Ligures can be considered a distinct ethnic group or culture from the surrounding cultures. List of ancient Ligurian tribes Ancient peoples of Italy Torrean civilization ARSLAN E. A. 2004b, LVI.14 Garlasco, in I Liguri. Un antico popolo europeo tra Alpi e Mediterraneo, Catalo
The Via Augusta, was the longest and busiest of the major roads built by the Romans in ancient Hispania. With an approximate length of 1,500 km 1,500 km, the Via Augusta was built to link Spain with Italy, running from the interior city of Gades to the Pyrenees along inland valleys parallel to the coast of the Mediterranean Sea; as the main axis of the road network in Roman Hispania, it appears in ancient sources such as the itinerary inscribed on the Vicarello Cups as well in as the Antonine Itinerary. The road was named after Emperor Augustus, who ordered it renovated between 8 BC and 2 BC, its path is followed by the N-340 road and the A-7 highway. North of Tarragona there remains a Roman Triumphal arch, the Arc de Berà, around which the road divides. At Martorell, the ancient Via crosses the river Llobregat on the Pont del Diable, which dates from the High Middle Ages in its current form. At present, the N-IV N-420, N-340 and the Mediterranean Highway follow the same itinerary in many sections as the Vía Augusta.
In some sections of the current N-340, the Roman road was used until the 1920s, when they were paved during the dictatorship of Primo de Rivera. The Roman Empire built roads extending to its far corners. Hispania, the Roman name for the Iberian Peninsula, included modern day Spain, Portugal and the southernmost part of France; when Augustus went to Spain between 16 and 13 BC, he saw the need for roads and ordered the construction of the Via Augusta, the longest and most important road in Hispania. The road passed from near the southern tip of present-day Spain on the Atlantic to the Mediterranean through the Guadalquivir valley and along the coast to the Pyrenees. Throughout its history, there were periods when villages along the Via Augusta were well-populated and periods when they were nearly deserted After Germanic peoples invaded Hispania circa 409 the Roman roads were neglected and the Via Augusta began to deteriorate. Gades Ad Portus Asta Regia (Mesas de Asta, Ugia Orippo Hispalis Carmo Obucla u Obúlcula Colonia Augusta Firma Astigi Adaras Corduba Iliturgi (Mengíbar, where it crossed the Betis River on the Bridge of Andújar Isturgi Castulo Mentesa Oretana Saltigi Libisosa Ad Ello Carthago Nova??
Eliocroca?? Sucro Saetabis Valentia Saguntum Intybilis Dertosa Tarraco Aquis Vocontis Gerunda Narbo Martius, France
Tortona is a comune of Piemonte, in the Province of Alessandria, Italy. Tortona is sited on the right bank of the Scrivia between the plain of Marengo and the foothills of the Ligurian Apennines. Known in ancient times as Dertona, the city was the oldest colony under Roman rule in the westernmost section of the Valley of the Po, on the road leading from Genua to Placentia; the city was founded c. 123–118 BC at the junction of the great roads. The site made Dertona an important military station under the Romans. Strabo speaks of it as one of the most considerable towns in this part of Italy, we learn from Pliny that it was a Roman colony. Velleius mentions it among those founded under the Republic, it appears to have been recolonised under Augustus, from whence we find it bearing in inscriptions the title of Julia Dertona; the assassin of Caesar, encamped at Dertona on his march in pursuit of Mark Antony, after the Battle of Mutina, it was one of the places where a body of troops was stationed during the ages of the empire.
A bishopric was founded at Tortona early, but its first bishops are purely legendary, like Saint Marcianus of Tortona, called the first bishop of Piedmont and a disciple of Barnabas, the companion of Paul. Until the 9th century, the city was under the rule of its bishop. In 1133 the diocese was separated from the archbishopric of Milan to the new archdiocese of Genoa. In 1155 Frederick Barbarossa besieged and leveled Tortona to the ground, leaving not one stone upon another. During the Middle Ages, Tortona was destroyed several times. From 1260 to 1347 the city was dominated by a series of different Italian noble families and adventurers like Facino Cane, who in the unsettled affairs of Lombardy had assembled a string of lordships and great wealth which he bequeathed to his wife and arranged with his friends that a marriage should be effected between her and Filippo Maria Visconti. According to Machiavelli "By this union Filippo became powerful, reacquired Milan and the whole of Lombardy. By way of being grateful for these numerous favors, as princes are, he accused Beatrice of adultery and caused her to be put to death".
In this way, in 1347, Tortona was decisively incorporated into the territories of the Duchy of Milan, under which remained until 1735. Following the vicissitudes of the War of the Polish Succession, the city was occupied by the King of Sardinia, "count of Tortona" was added to the titles of the House of Savoy. Tortona is the capital of an area known as Colli Tortonesi, which stretches from the town to the border with Liguria; the area is known for the variety and of its products and for the intensive wine production, including Barbera, Dolcetto and Timorasso, the autochthonous wine of the region which traces its origin back to the 14th century. Truffles are another important fruit of this land and the Colli Tortonesi is the only place in Piedmont to have three varieties of truffle: White truffle, Black Truffle and scorzone. Roman remains, traditionally identified as the Mausoleum of the Roman Emperor Maiorianus. Palazzo Guidobono, restructured in 1939 to bring back its a Gothic façade, it has traces of Renaissance frescoes.
The cathedral. The façade is a neoclassicist addition of the 19th century; the interior has works by Aurelio Luini and others. It houses the relics of St. Martianus, patron of Tortona, the tombs of many important religious figures, including Don Lorenzo Perosi and his brother Cardinal Carlo Perosi. Liceo Giuseppe Peano, built in the 19th century; the Bishops' Palace, with a noteworthy Renaissance portal. It has a triptych of Madonna with Saints by Macrino d'Alba. Abbey of Santa Maria di Rivalta, in the frazione of Rivalta Scrivia, it is a Romanesque structure founded before 1151. It houses several 15th-century frescoes. Church of San Matteo Church of Santa Maria Canale Church of Santa Giustina e Sant'Agnese People born in Tortona, or with close links to the town, include: Saint Marcian of Tortona is traditionally said to have been the first bishop of Tortona. Saint Innocent of Tortona, who survived the persecutions and was sent as bishop to Tortona by Pope Sylvester. Bishop Gezo of Tortona in the 10th century wrote a Treatise on the Blood of the Lord.
Marziano da Tortona, secretary to Duke Filippo Maria Visconti of Milan, is one of the people credited with inventing the card game of Tarocchi. Saint Luigi Orione founded the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Guardia in Tortona. Lorenzo Perosi, an associate of Orione, was a composer of church music and "Perpetual Director" of the Sistine Choir. Marziano Perosi, organist, choir director, brother of Lorenzo. Fausto Coppi, Italian racing cyclist. Giuseppe Campora, operatic tenor. Enrico Bellone and writer. Ivo Milazzo, Italian comic book artist. Luisa Ottolini, Italian physicist. Majorian, Western Roman Emperor from 457 until his death, is said to have died here. Judith of Bavaria, Holy Roman Empress and Queen of the Franks, was exiled to Tortona in 833, rescued in 834. Ufomammut, doom metal band. Privas, France Weilburg, Germany Zevenaar, The Netherlands Jiangyin, People's Republic of China Diocese of Tortona In geology, the Tortonian A
The gens Aurelia was a plebeian family at Rome, which flourished from the third century BC to the latest period of the Empire. The first of the Aurelian gens to obtained the consulship was Gaius Aurelius Cotta in 252 BC. From to the end of the Republic, the Aurelii supplied many distinguished statesmen, before entering a period of relative obscurity under the early emperors. In the latter part of the first century, a family of the Aurelii rose to prominence, obtaining patrician status, the throne itself. A series of emperors belonged to this family, through birth or adoption, including Marcus Aurelius and the members of the Severan dynasty. In the third century, the Constitutio Antoniniana of Caracalla granted Roman citizenship to all free residents of the Empire, resulting in vast numbers of new citizens who assumed the nomen Aurelius, in honour of their patron. So ubiquitous was the name in the latter centuries of the Empire that it suffered abbreviation, as Aur. and it becomes difficult to distinguish members of the Aurelian gens from other persons bearing the name.
The nomen Aurelius is connected with the Latin adjective aureus, meaning "golden", in which case it was derived from the color of a person's hair. However, Festus reports that the original form of the nomen was Auselius, that the medial's' was replaced by'r' at a early period. According to Festus, Auselius was derived from a Sabine word for the sun. All of the praenomina used by the chief families of the Aurelii were common throughout Roman history; the Aurelii of the Republic used Gaius, Lucius and Publius, to which the Aurelii Orestides added Gnaeus. The Aurelii Fulvi of imperial times used Titus and Lucius, while the Aurelii Symmachi used Quintus and Lucius. There were three main stirpes of the Aurelii in republican times, distinguished by the cognomina Cotta and Scaurus. Cotta and Scaurus appear on coins, together with a fourth surname, which does not occur among the ancient writers. A few personal cognomina are found, including Pecuniola referring to the poverty of one of the Aurelii during the First Punic War.
Cotta, the surname of the oldest and most illustrious branch of the Aurelii under the Republic refers to a cowlick, or unruly shock of hair. Marcus Aurelius Cotta, moneyer in 139 BC, minted an unusual denarius, featuring Hercules in a biga driven by centaurs alluding to some mythological event connected with the gens, but the exact symbolism is unknown; the Aurelii Cottae were prominent from the First Punic War down to the time of Tiberius, after which they faded into obscurity. The last of this family appearing in history include Marcus Aurelius Cotta Maximus Messalinus, a friend of Tiberius, who squandered his family fortune through reckless prodigality, his son, who received a stipend from Nero in order to maintain his household in a manner befitting his illustrious forebears; the Cottae were related to Julius Caesar and Augustus through Aurelia Cotta, Caesar's mother. The Aurelii Scauri were a small family, which flourished during the last two centuries of the Republic, their surname, belongs to a common class of cognomina derived from an individual's physical features, referred to someone with swollen ankles.
Orestes, the surname of a family that flourished for about a century toward the end of the Republic, was a Greek name, belonged to a class of surnames of foreign origin, which appear during the middle and late Republic. In Greek mythology, Orestes was the son of Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, avenged his father's murder by slaying his own mother, after escaping the judgment of the Erinyes, became king of Mycenae; the circumstances by which the name became attached to a branch of the Aurelii are unclear, but allude to some heroic deed, or military service in Greece. The Aurelii Fulvi, who rose to prominence in imperial times came from Nemausus in Gallia Narbonensis. Titus Aurelius Fulvus, the first of the family to attain the consulship, was made a patrician about AD 73 or 74. In the second century, the Aurelii Fulvi obtained the Empire itself, when the consul's grandson, Titus Aurelius Fulvus, was adopted as the successor to Hadrian, becoming the emperor Antoninus Pius. Most of the emperors who followed were born or adopted into the gens, through the end of the Severan dynasty.
The surname Fulvus was a common surname, referring to someone with yellowish, yellow-brown, tawny, or strawberry blond hair. The Aurelii Galli were a family that achieved notability during the second century, attaining the consulship on at least three occasions, their surname, had two common derivations, referring either to a cockerel, or to a Gaul. In the latter case, it might indicate that the first of this family was of Gallic descent, that he was born in Gaul, that he had performed some noteworthy deed in Gaul, or that in some manner he resembled a Gaul; the Aurelii Symmachi were one of the last great families of the western empire, holding the highest offices of the Roman state during the fourth and fifth centuries. The Symmachi were regarded as members of the old Roman aristocracy, acquired a reputation for their wisdom and learning; this list includes abbreviated praenomina. For an explanation of this practice, see filiation. Gaius Aurelius L. f. C. n. Cotta, consul in 252 and 248 BC, during the First Punic War, he fought against
Romans are famous for their advanced engineering accomplishments, although some of their own inventions were improvements on older ideas and inventions. Technology for bringing running water into cities was developed in the east, but transformed by the Romans into a technology inconceivable in Greece; the architecture used in Rome was influenced by Greek and Etruscan sources. Roads were common at that time, but the Romans improved their design and perfected the construction to the extent that many of their roads are still in use today, their accomplishments surpassed most other civilizations of their time, after their time, many of their structures have withstood the test of time to inspire others during the Renaissance. Moreover, their contributions were described in some detail by authors such as Vitruvius and Pliny the Elder, so there is a printed record of their many inventions and achievements. 1,000 cubic metres of water were brought into Rome by 14 different aqueducts each day. Per capita water usage in ancient Rome matched that of modern-day cities like New York City or modern Rome.
Most water was for public use, such as sewers. De aquaeductu is the definitive two volume treatise on 1st century aqueducts of Rome, written by Frontinus; the aqueducts could stretch from 10–100 km long, descended from an elevation of 300 m above sea level at the source, to 100 m when they reached the reservoirs around the city. Roman engineers used inverted siphons to move water across a valley if they judged it impractical to build a raised aqueduct; the Roman legions were responsible for building the aqueducts. Maintenance was done by slaves; the Romans were among the first civilizations to harness the power of water. They built some of the first watermills outside of Greece for grinding flour and spread the technology for constructing watermills throughout the Mediterranean region. A famous example occurs at Barbegal in southern France, where no fewer than 16 overshot mills built into the side of a hill were worked by a single aqueduct, the outlet from one feeding the mill below in a cascade.
They were skilled in mining, building aqueducts needed to supply equipment used in extracting metal ores, e.g. hydraulic mining, the building of reservoirs to hold the water needed at the minehead. It is known that they were capable of building and operating mining equipment such as crushing mills and dewatering machines. Large diameter vertical wheels of Roman vintage, for raising water, have been excavated from the Rio Tinto mines in Southwestern Spain, they were involved in exploiting gold resources such as those at Dolaucothi in south west Wales and in north-west Spain, a country where gold mining developed on a large scale in the early part of the first century AD, such as at Las Medulas. Roman bridges were among the first large and lasting bridges built, they were built with stone. Most utilized concrete as well. Built in 142 BC, the Pons Aemilius named Ponte Rotto is the oldest Roman stone bridge in Rome, Italy; the biggest Roman bridge was Trajan's bridge over the lower Danube, constructed by Apollodorus of Damascus, which remained for over a millennium.
They were at least 18 meters above the body of water. An example of temporary military bridge construction is the two Caesar's Rhine bridges; the Romans built many dams for water collection, such as the Subiaco dams, two of which fed Anio Novus, the largest aqueduct supplying Rome. One of the Subiaco dams was reputedly the highest found or inferred, they built 72 dams in Spain, such as those at Mérida, many more are known across the empire. At one site, Montefurado in Galicia, they appear to have built a dam across the river Sil to expose alluvial gold deposits in the bed of the river; the site is near the spectacular Roman gold mine of Las Medulas. Several earthen dams are known from Britain, including a well-preserved example from Roman Lanchester, where it may have been used in industrial-scale smithing or smelting, judging by the piles of slag found at this site in northern England. Tanks for holding water are common along aqueduct systems, numerous examples are known from just one site, the gold mines at Dolaucothi in west Wales.
Masonry dams were common in North Africa for providing a reliable water supply from the wadis behind many settlements. The buildings and architecture of Ancient Rome was impressive by modern standards; the Circus Maximus, for example, was large enough to be used as a stadium. The Colosseum provides an example of Roman architecture at its finest. One of many stadiums built by the Romans, the Colosseum exhibits the arches and curves associated with Roman buildings; the Pantheon in Rome still stands a monument and tomb, the Baths of Diocletian and the Baths of Caracalla are remarkable for their state of preservation, the former still possessing intact domes. Such massive public buildings were copied in numerous provincial capitals and towns across the empire, the general principles behind their design and construction are described by Vitruvius writing at the turn of millennium in his monumental work De architectura; the technology developed for the baths was impressive the widespread use of the hypocaust for one of the first types of central heating developed anywhere.
That invention was used not just in the large public buildings, but spread to domestic buildings such as the many villas which were built across the Empire. The most common materials used were brick, stone or masonry, cement and marble. Brick came i
First Punic War
The First Punic War was the first of three wars fought between Ancient Carthage and the Roman Republic, the two great powers of the Western Mediterranean. For 23 years, in the longest continuous conflict and greatest naval war of antiquity, the two powers struggled for supremacy on the Mediterranean island of Sicily and its surrounding waters, in North Africa; the war began in 264 BC with the Roman conquest of the Carthaginian-controlled city of Messina in Sicily, granting Rome a military foothold on the island. The Romans built up a navy to challenge Carthage, the greatest naval power in the Mediterranean, for control over the waters around Sicily. In naval battles and storms, 700 Roman and 500 Carthaginian quinqueremes were lost, along with hundreds of thousands of lives. Command of the sea was lost by both sides repeatedly. A Roman invasion of Carthaginian Africa was destroyed in battle at the Bagradas and the Roman consul Marcus Atilius Regulus was captured by the Carthaginians in 255. In 23 years, the Romans conquered Sicily and drove the Carthaginians to the west end of the island.
After both sides had been brought to a state of near exhaustion, the Romans mobilized their citizenry's private wealth and created a new fleet under consul Gaius Lutatius Catulus. The Carthaginian fleet was destroyed at the Aegates Islands in 241, forcing the cut-off Carthaginian troops on Sicily to give up. A peace treaty was signed in which Carthage was made to pay a heavy indemnity and Rome ejected Carthage from Sicily, annexing the island as a Roman province; the war was followed by a failed revolt against the Carthaginian Empire. The Romans exploited Carthage's weakness to seize the Carthaginian possessions of Sardinia and Corsica in violation of the peace treaty; the unresolved strategic competition between Rome and Carthage would lead to the eruption of the Second Punic War in 218 BC. The series of wars between Rome and Carthage took the name "Punic" from the Latin adjective for Carthaginian, Punicus; this refers to the Carthaginian heritage as Phoenician colonists. A Carthaginian name for the conflicts does not survive in any records.
Rome had emerged as the leading city-state in the Italian Peninsula, a wealthy, expansionist republic with a successful citizen army. Over the past one hundred years, Rome had come into conflict, defeated rivals on the Italian peninsula incorporated them into the Roman political world. First, the Latin League was forcibly dissolved during the Latin War the power of the Samnites was broken during the three prolonged Samnite wars, the Greek cities of Magna Graecia submitted to Roman power at the conclusion of the Pyrrhic War. By the beginning of the First Punic War, the Romans had secured the whole of the Italian peninsula, except Gallia Cisalpina in the Po Valley. Carthage was a republic that dominated the political and economic affairs of the western Mediterranean Sea on the North African coasts and islands, above all, due to its navy, it originated as a Phoenician colony near modern Tunis. Carthage had become a wealthy centre for trade networks extending from Gadir along the coasts of southern Iberia and North Africa, across the Balearic Islands, Corsica and the western half of Sicily, to the ports of the eastern Mediterranean, including Tyre, its mother city, on the shores of the Levant.
At the height of power, just before the First Punic War, Carthage was hostile to foreign ships in the western Mediterranean. North African peoples, such as the Berbers, in the area around Carthage were loosely associated with Carthage. In the midst of the First Punic War, some tribes rebelled against Carthage, opening a second front while the Carthaginians battled the Romans in Sicily. Greek colonists were a major presence in the western Mediterranean, following centuries of colonial settlement and conflicts with Rome over Magna Graecia and with Carthage over places such as Sicily; the rich, strategically influential, well-fortified Greek colony of Syracuse was politically independent of Rome and Carthage. Hostilities of the First Punic War began with developments involving the Romans and Greek colonists in Sicily and southern Italy. In 288 BC, the Mamertines, a group of Italian mercenaries hired by Agathocles of Syracuse, occupied the city of Messana in the north-eastern tip of Sicily, killing all the men and taking the women as their wives.
At the same time, a group of Roman troops made up of Campanian "citizens without the vote" revolted and seized control of Rhegium, lying across the Straits of Messina on the mainland of Italy. In 270 BC, the Romans regained control of Rhegium and punished the survivors of the revolt. In Sicily, the Mamertines ravaged the countryside and collided with the expanding regional empire of the independent city of Syracuse. Hiero II, tyrant of Syracuse, defeated the Mamertines near Mylae on the Longanus River. Following their defeat, the Mamertines appealed to both Carthage for assistance; the Carthaginians acted first, approached Hiero to take no further action and convinced the Mamertines to accept a Carthaginian garrison in Messana. Either unhappy with the prospect of a Carthaginian garrison or convinced that the recent alliance between Rome and Carthage against Pyrrhus reflected cordial relations between the two, the Mamertines, hoping for more reliable protection, petitioned Rome for an alliance.
However, the rivalry between Rome and Carthage had grown since the war with Pyrrhus and that alliance was no longer feasible. According to the historian Polybius, considerable debate took place in Rome on the questio