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date: 29 January 2023

Rome, history, from the origins to 31 BCElocked

Rome, history, from the origins to 31 BCElocked

  • Tim Cornell


Surviving literary accounts of the beginnings of Rome are based entirely on legend. The stories provide evidence of what the Romans at various times thought about their own origins and how they liked to see themselves. The developed version of the story contained two main legends, those of *Aeneas and *Romulus, which were artificially combined at an unknown date (but certainly before 300 bce). Although both legends are very ancient, they are, as far as we can tell, quite unhistorical, although certain incidental details (e.g. the idea that Romulus founded his settlement on the *Palatine) are consistent with the archaeological facts.The archaeological evidence now available shows that one or more villages were established on the hills of Rome (including the Palatine) from the end of the bronze age (c.1000 bce). These communities were similar to other hilltop settlements that have been identified throughout Latium Vetus, whose cemeteries provide evidence of a distinct form of material culture known as the cultura laziale.


  • Roman History and Historiography

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