AR 226 Lecture 6: AR 226 Lecture 6

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8 Feb 2016
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AR 226 Lecture 6
Jan 21/16
The Samnite Wars c. 343 – 290 BC
Rome fought three wars against the Samnite’s
A federation of Oscan speaking tribes who inhabited the south central Apennines
There was a struggle for domination of central Italy between the Romans and the Samnite
people
The Samnite’s conquered Pompeii in the 4th century BC
1st war took place during 343 – 341 BC
2nd war took place during 327 – 304 BC
3rd war took place during 298 – 290 BC
The Samnite’s resisted Romans using Guerilla Warfare
Romans had to adapt their weapons and use the same techniques to defeat them
In 2nd war, Appius Cladius, the blind
oCensor of 312/310 BC
oThought to have been the mastermind of winning this war
oStands out as the first clear, historical personality in Roman history
oBuilt the first military road from Rome south to Capua
Appian Way/ Via Appia
3rd war (298 – 290BC): Sabines, Etruscans, Gauls joined that with the Samnites in hopes
of stopping Rome
o295BC: Battle of Sentium in Umbria:
Rome crushed them with the army of soldiers and allies
o290BC: Samnites surrendered lands annexed and they received the status of
Roman allies (Socii)
o283BC: Romans defeated Etruscans and the Gauls
oBy early 3rd century BC Romans had won fight for Central Italy
Pyrrhic Wars and Conquest of South Italy (Magna Graecia)
Struggles now between Romans and the Greeks in Southern Italy
Romans declared war on Tarentum, who had appealed for help over seas from Epirus
283BC: Approached Pyrrhus of Epirus, 2nd cousin of Alexander the Great
Plutarch: Pyrrhus aimed at an Empire in Italy, as well as the conquest of Sicily and
Carthage
oRomans lost to Pyrrhus twice
oIt was the first time Romans had to face a well equipped army and war elephants
Romans lost at both Heraclea and Ausculum (279 BC) but they inflicted heavy losses on
Pyrrhus’ army
oVictories like this began to be knows as Pyrrhic victories
276BC: lost several war elephants at Beneventum
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