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Quote of the day: Equally vicious with his brother
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History of Rome (Ab Urbe Condita) by Livy
Translated by Rev. Canon Roberts
Book XXVII Chapter 51: The senate decreed a three days' thanksgiving. The head of Hasdrubal given to Hannibal[207 BC]
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Word was brought that the envoys were approaching. Everybody young and old alike ran out to meet them, each eager to drink in the good tidings with eyes and ears, and the crowd extended as far as the Mulvian bridge. The envoys were Lucius Veturius Philo, Publius Licinius Varus and Quintus Caecilius Metellus. They made their way to the Forum surrounded by a crowd which represented every class of the population, and besieged by questions on all sides as to what had really happened. No sooner did any one hear that the army of the enemy and its commander had been slain whilst the consuls and their army were safe, than he hastened to make others sharers of his joy. The senate-house was reached with difficulty, and with much greater difficulty was the crowd prevented from invading the space reserved for the senators. Here the despatch was read, and then the envoys were conducted to the Assembly. After the despatch was read, Lucius Veturius gave fuller details and his narrative was received with bursts of applause, which finally swelled into universal cheers, the Assembly being hardly able to contain itself for joy. Some ran to the temples to give thanks to heaven, others hurried home that their wives and children might hear the good news. The senate decreed a three days' thanksgiving "because the consuls, Marcus Livius and Gaius Claudius Nero, had preserved their own armies in safety and destroyed the army of the enemy and its commander." Gaius Hostilius, the praetor, issued the order for its observance. The services were attended by men and women alike, the temples were crowded all through the three days, and the matrons in their most splendid robes, accompanied by their children, offered their thanksgivings to the gods, as free from anxiety and fear as though the war were over. This victory also relieved the financial position. People ventured to do business just as in a time of peace, buying and selling, lending and repaying loans. After Nero had returned to camp he gave orders for Hasdrubal's head, which he had kept and brought with him, to be thrown in front of the enemies' outpost, and the African prisoners to be exhibited just as they were in chains. Two of them were released with orders to go to Hannibal and report all that had happened. Stunned by the blow which had fallen on his country and on his family, it is said that Hannibal declared that he recognised the doom which awaited Carthage. He broke up his camp, and decided to concentrate in Bruttium, the remotest corner of Italy, all his supporters whom he could no longer protect, whilst scattered in the different cities. The whole population of Metapontum had to leave their homes together with all the Lucanians who acknowledged his supremacy, and were transported into Bruttian territory.

Battle of Metaurus, 207 BC

Event: Battle of Metaurus, 207 BC