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By Robert F. Pennell

Robert Franklin Pennell (1850, Maine – 1905, San Francisco) used to be an American educator and classicist.

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On his return, after quelling a mutiny of the soldiers, who were dissatisfied about their pay, he resigned his command, and started for Rome, where he 61 intended to become a candidate for the consulship. OPERATIONS IN ITALY The news of the approach of Hasdrubal caused intense anxiety at Rome. Every nerve was strained to prevent the union of the two brothers. The Consuls for this year (207) were GAIUS CLAUDIUS NERO, a patrician, and MARCUS LIVIUS, a plebeian. To the former was intrusted the task of keeping Hannibal in check in Bruttium, while the duty of intercepting Hasdrubal was given to the latter.

It was not a battle, but a mere rout. The main body of the Romans was cut to pieces, with scarcely any resistance, and the Consul himself was killed. Fifteen thousand Romans fell, and as many more were captured. The loss of the Carthaginians was but 1,500, and was confined mostly to the Gallic allies. All Etruria was lost, and Hannibal could march without hindrance upon Rome, whose citizens, expecting the enemy daily, tore down the bridges over the Tiber and prepared for a siege. QUINTUS FABIUS MAXIMUS was appointed Dictator.

But Hannibal's superiority as a general is unquestionable, and his want of success after this was due to insufficient aid from home, and to the fact that the resources of Rome were greater than those of Carthage. The Latin allies of Rome had remained true to their allegiance, and only one city of importance was under his control. It was an easy matter to conquer the enemy in open battle, but to support his own army was more difficult, for all Italy had been devastated. On the other hand, the Romans were well supplied with food from their possessions in Sicily.

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