tegitur cinis atque Latina), which, like the via Appia, ran in a straight
line for the first ii miles. Liv. ii. 39 uses it, in speaking of Coriolanus,
only as a geographical description; for it was not in existence so early.
Its history is unknown, but its straightness of line shows that it was
not a primitive road but an artificial military highway; and it was
probably constructed after the pass of Algidus had been secured in
389 B.C.; and it must have run at least as early as 334 B.C. as far as Cales
(Liv. x. 36).
It was joined at three different points by the via Labicana or by
branches. Strabo v. 3. 9, p. 237, shows that the via Latina was in his
time regarded as the principal road, and indeed he classes it with the
Appia and Valeria as among the most famous; but in later times the
easier line taken by the via Labicana may have commended it to travellers,
though the Latina was kept up also (for a milestone of Maxentius, see
PBS i. 278). The distance being identical, th