IT is delightful even to me to have come to the end of the Punic war, as if I myself had borne a share of the toil and danger.
For though it by no means becomes a person, who has ventured to promise an entire history of all the Roman affairs, to be fatigued by any particular parts of so extensive a [p. 1342]
yet when I reflect that sixty-three years (for so many there are from the first Punic war to the end of the second) have occupied as many of my
volumes, as the four hundred and eighty-seven years, from the building of the city to the consulate of Appius Claudius, who first made war on the Carthaginians, I plainly perceive that, like those who, tempted by the shallows near the shore, walk into the sea, the farther I advance, I am carried, as it were, into a greater depth and abyss;
and that my work almost increases on my hands, which seemed to be diminished by the completion of each of its earlier portions.
The peace with Carthage was quickly followed by a war with Macedonia: a war, not to be compared to the former, indeed, either in danger, or in the abilities of the commander, or the valour of the soldiers;
but almost more remarkable with regard to the renown of their former kings, the ancient fame of that nation, and the vast extent of their empire, in which they had formerly comprehended a large part of Europe, and the greater part of Asia.
The contest with Philip, which had begun about ten years before, had been intermitted for the three last years; the Aetolians having been the occasion both of the war and the peace.
The entreaties of the Athenians whom, having ravaged their lands, Philip had driven into their city, excited the Romans to a renewal of the war, left, as they were, disengaged by the Carthaginian peace, and incensed against him as well for his treacherous negotiation of peace
with the Aetolians and the other allies in that region, as on account of the auxiliaries sent by him with money into Africa to Hannibal and the Carthaginians.