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SA´TRICUM

SA´TRICUM (Eth. Σατρικανός, Eth. Satricanus: Casale di Conca), an ancient city of Latium, situated on the frontier of the Volscian-territory, between the Alban hills and the sea. This position rendered it a place of importance during the wars between the Romans and Volscians, and it is frequently mentioned in history at that period. It appears to have been originally a Latin city, as Diodorus mentions its name among the reputed colonies of Alba, and Dionysius also includes it in the list of the thirty cities of the Latin League. (Diod. vii. Fr. 3; Dionys. A. R. 5.61.) But when it first appears in history it is as a Volscian town, apparently a dependency of Antium. It had, however, been wrested from that people by the Romans at the same time with Corioli, Pollusca, &c; and hence it is one of the towns the recovery of which by the Volscians is ascribed to Coriolanus. (Liv. 2.39.) It seems to have continued in their power from this time till after the Gaulish invasion, as in B.C. 386 it was made the head-quarters of the Volscians and their allies on the outbreak of a war with Rome, and, after their defeat by Camillus, was assaulted and taken by that general. (Id. 6.7, 8.) It would appear that it must on this occasion have for the first time received a Roman colony, as a few years later (B.C. 381) it is styled a “colonia populi Romani.” In that year it was attacked by the Volscians in concert with the Praenestines, and, after an obstinate defence, was carried by assault, and the garrison put to the sword. (Id. 6.22.) It is subsequently mentioned on two occasions as affording shelter to the Volscian armies after their defeat by the Romans mans (Id. 6.22, 32); after the last of these (B.C. 377) it was burnt by the Latins, who considered themselves betrayed by their Volscian allies. (Ib. 33.) It was not till B.C. 348 that the city was rebuilt built by the Antiates, who established a colony there; but two years later it was again taken by the Romans under M. Valerius Corvus. The garrison, to the number of 4000 men, were made prisoners, and the town burnt and destroyed, with the exception of a temple of Mater Matuta. (Id. 7.27; Fast. Capit.) A few years later it was the scene of a victory of the Romans, under C. Plautius, over the Antiates (id. 8.1), and seems to have been soon after restored, and received a fresh colony, as it was certainly again inhabited, at the commencement of the Second Samnite War. In B.C. 320, after the disaster of the Caudine Forks, the Satricans revolted from Rome and declared in favour of the Samnites; but they were soon punished for their defection, their city being taken by the consul Papirius, and the Samnite garrison put to the sword. (Liv. 9.12, 16; Oros, 3.15.) From this time it seems to have continued subject to Rome; but its name disappears from history, and it probably sunk rapidly into decay. It is incidentally mentioned during the Second Punic War (B.C. 206) on occasion of a prodigy which occurred in the temple of Mater Matuta, already noticed (Liv. 28.11); but it seems certain that it ceased to exist before the close of the Cicero indeed alludes incidentally to the name in a manner that shows that the site at least was well known in his time (ad Q. Fr. 3.1.4); but Pliny reckons it among the celebrated towns of Latium, of which, in his days, no vestige remained (Plin. Nat. 3.5. s. 9); and none of the; other geographers allude to its name. The site, like that of most of the Latin cities which disappeared at an early period, is a matter of much doubt; but several passages in Livy tend to prove that it must have been situated between Antium and Velitrae, and its site has been fixed with much probability by Nibby at the farm or casale, now called Conca, about half way between Anzo and Velletri. The site is an isolated hill of tufo, of somewhat quadrangular form, and about 2500 feet in circuit, with precipitous sides, and presents portions of the ancient walls, constructed in much the same style as those of Ardea, of irregular square blocks of tufo. The sites of two gates, one on the E. the other to the W., may also be distinctly traced. There is therefore no doubt that the site in question is that of an ancient city, and the position would well accord with the supposition that it is that of Satricumn. (Nibby, Dintorni di Roma, vol. iii. p. 64a.) [E.H.B] [p. 2.924]

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