about the same time, when a large part of the year had already gone by, Laevinus, the consul, arrived in Sicily awaited by the old and the new allies. accordingly he thought it of the very first importance to settle affairs that were in disorder at Syracuse owing to the short time since the peace.
then he led his legions to Agrigentum, being the last1
remnant of the war and held by a strong garrison of Carthaginians.
and in fact fortune favoured the undertaking.
Hanno was the general of the Carthaginians, but all their hope continued to rest upon Muttines and the Numidians. roaming all over Sicily, Muttines was carrying off booty from allies of the Romans, and he could neither be shut off from Agrigentum by force or by any ruse, nor be prevented from sallying out whenever he pleased.
this distinction of the man, as already eclipsing the reputation even of the general, finally developed into hatred, so that not even successes any longer brought much joy to Hanno on account of the man who was responsible for them.
finally he gave Muttines' command of the cavalry to his own son, thinking that with the command he would take away his prestige also among the Numidians.
but it turned out quite differently. for by his own unpopularity he even increased the old —time partiality for Muttines. and the latter did not put up with a shameful wrong, but at once sent secret messengers to Laevinus in regard to the betrayal of Agrigentum.
these men having reassured the consul and arranged a plan of action, the Numidians seized the gate leading toward the sea,2
driving away or slaying the guards; whereupon they admitted Romans sent for that very purpose into the city.
and when now they were marching in column into the centre of the city and to the market —place with a great uproar, Hanno, thinking it was nothing more than an outbreak and mutiny of the Numidians, as had happened before also, went forth to quell the uprising.
but when he caught sight of a crowd in the distance larger than the number of the [p. 155]
Numidians, and the shouts of the Romans, by no3
means unfamiliar, had reached his ears, he took to flight before coming within range of a missile.
escaping by the gate farthest from the enemy4
and taking Epicydes as his companion, with a few men he made his way to the sea. and fortunately finding a small vessel and leaving Sicily, for which the struggle had lasted so many years, to the enemy, they crossed over to Africa.
while the rest of the Carthaginians and Sicilians in a body, without even attempting to fight, were blindly fleeing, and ways of escape had been closed, they were slain near the gates.
on gaining possession of the town, Laevinus scourged and beheaded the responsible men at Agrigentum, and sold the rest and the booty. all the money he sent to Rome.
when the news of the disaster to the Agrigentines had been carried all over Sicily, suddenly there was a general trend towards the Romans. soon after that, twenty towns were betrayed, six taken by assault; by voluntary surrender about forty came under Roman protection.
after the consul had bestowed upon the leading men of these states the reward or the penalty that each deserved, and had compelled the Sicilians to lay down their arms at last and tum their attention to tilling the soil, so that the island might
not only produce food enough for the inhabitants, but might relieve the grain market of the city of Rome and of Italy, as it had often done on many occasions, he took with him an unruly mob from Agathyrna over into Italy.5
there were four thousand men, refuse of every kind, exiles, debtors, guilty, many of them, of capital offences, so long as they had lived in their own cities and under the laws; and they were dragging out an [p. 157]
existence by highway robbery and plundering, after6
their common misery, for one reason or another, had concentrated them at Agathyrna.
these men Laevinus did not think it quite safe to leave on the island, then for the first time attaining unity under the recent peace, as they furnished fuel for a revolution, and at the same time would prove useful to the men of Regium, who were looking for a band accustomed to brigandage, in order to devastate the Bruttian territory. and so far as concerned Sicily the war was finished that year.