Ancus, having committed the care of sacred things to the famines and other priests, set out with a new army, which he had levied, and took Politorium, a city of the Latins, by storm; and following the example of former kings, who had increased the Roman state by taking enemies into the number of the citizens, he transplanted all the people to Rome.
And since the Sabines occupied the Capitol and citadel, and the Albans the Cœlian mount around the Palatium, the residence of the old Romans, the Aventine was assigned to the new people; not long after, on Telleni and Ficana being taken, new citizens were added in the same quarter.
After this Politorium was taken a second time by force of arms, because the ancient Latins had taken possession of it when vacated. This was the cause of the Romans demolishing that city, that it might not ever after serve as a receptacle to the enemy.
At last, the whole war with the Latins being concentrated in Medullia, they fought there with various fortune, sometimes the one and sometimes the other gaining the victory; for the town was both well fortified by works, and strengthened by a strong garrison, and the Latins, having pitched their camp in the open fields, had several times fought the Romans in close engagement.
At last Ancus, making an effort with all his forces, obtained a complete victory over them in a pitched battle, and having got a considerable booty, returned thence to Rome; many thousands of the Latins being then also admitted into the city, to whom, in order that the Aventine might be joined to the Palatium, a settlement was assigned near the temple of Murcia.
The Janiculum was likewise added, not for want of room, but lest at any time it should become a lodgment for the enemy. It was determined to join it to the city, not only by a wall, but likewise, for the sake of the convenience of [p. 47]
passage, by a wooden bridge, then for the first time built across the Tiber.
The Fossa Quiritium, no inconsiderable defence against the easy access to the city from the low grounds, is the work of king Ancus.
The state being augmented by such great accessions, seeing that, amid such a multitude of persons, the distinction of right and wrong being as yet confounded, clandestine crimes were committed, a prison is built in the heart of the city, overlooking the forum, to intimidate the growing licentiousness.
And not only was the city increased under this king, but the territory also and the boundaries. The Maesian forest was taken from the Veientes, the Roman dominion was extended as far as the sea, and the city of Ostia built at the mouth of the Tiber; salt-pits were formed around it, and, in consequence of the distinguished success achieved in war, the temple of Jupiter Feretrius was enlarged.