War With the Dalmatians
When the envoys under Fannius returned from Illyria,
Fannius and his colleagues roughly treated by the Dalmatians, B. C. 157.
and reported that, so far from the Dalmatians
making any restitution to those who asserted
that they were being continually wronged by
them, they refused even to listen to the commissioners at all, saying that they had nothing
to do with the Romans. Besides, they reported that no
lodging or entertainment of any sort had been supplied to
them; but that the very horses, which they had procured from
another city, the Dalmatians had forcibly taken from them;
and would have laid violent hands upon themselves, if they
had not yielded to necessity and retired as quietly as they
The Senate decide on declaring war with the Dalmatians.
The Senate listened attentively to the
report; they were exceedingly angry at the
disobedience and rudeness of the Dalmatians,
but their prevailing feeling was that the present time was a
suitable one for declaring war against this people for more
reasons than one. For, in the first place, the coasts of Illyria
towards Italy had been entirely neglected by them ever since
they had expelled Demetrius of Pharos; and, in the next
place, they did not wish their own citizens to become enervated by a long-continued peace; for it was now the twelfth
year since the war with Perseus and the campaigns in Macedonia.
They therefore planned
that, by declaring war against the Dalmatians, they would at
once renew as it were the warlike spirit and enterprise of their
own people, and terrify the Illyrians into obedience to their
injunctions. Such were the motives of the Romans for going
to war with the Dalmatians. But to the world at large they
gave out that they had determined on war owing to the insults
offered to their legates. . . .