3. L. Quintius
Flamininus, a brother of the great T. Quintius Flamininus, was curule aedile in B. C. 200, and the year after was invested with the city praetorship. When his brother Titus, in B. C. 198, undertook the war against Philip of Macedonia, Lucius received the command of the Roman fleet, and had to protect the coasts of Italy.
He first sailed to Corcyra, and having met his fleet near the island of Zama, and received it from his predecessor, L. Apustius, he slowly proceeded to Malea, and thence to Peiraeeus, to join the ships which had been stationed there for the protection of Athens. Soon after he was joined by the allied fleets of Attalus and the Rhodians, and the combined fleets now undertook the siege of Eretria, which was occupied by a Macedonian garrison. Its inhabitants dreaded the Rommans as much as the Macedonians, and were uncertain what to do; but Lucius took the place at night by assault.
The citizens surrendered, and the conquerors' booty consisted chiefly of works of art which had adorned the town. Carystus immediately after surrendered to him without a blow. Having thus, in the space of a few days, gained possession of the two principal towns of Euboea, Flamininus sailed towards Cenchreae, the port of Corinth, where he made preparations for besieging Corinth.
By the command of his brother Titus, Lucius and his naval allies sent ambassadors to the Achaeans to win them over to their side. Most of them were persuaded to take up the cause of the Romans, and sent their troops to join Lucius in the siege of Corinth. Lucius had in the mean time taken Cenchreae, and was already engaged in the siege of Corinth.
A fierce battle had been fought, in which Lucius and his Romans were beaten. When his forces were strengthened by the arrival of the Achaeans, they equalled in number those of the enemy, and he continued his operations with better hopes of success.
But the defence made by the Corinthian garrison was desperate, for there were among the besiged a great number of Italians, who in the war with Hannibal had deserted form the service of the Romans. Hence Lucius at length despaired of success; he gave up the siege, and returned to his fleet, with which he sailed to Corcyra, while Attalus went to Peiraeeus.
As his brother's imperium was proionged for another year, Lucius also retained the command of the fleet in B. C. 197.
He accompanied his brother to the congress with the tyrant Nabis at Argos. Just before the battle of Cynoscephalae, Lucius, who was informed of the intention of the Acarnanians to join the Romans, sailed to Leucas, the chief place of the Acarnanians, and began to bockade it for the purpose of trying their intention.
But the inhabitants resisted, and the town was taken by storm.
The inhabitants were resolved to defend themselves to the last, and a great massacre took place; but when the news of the battle of Cynoscephalae arrived, all the tribes of Acarnania submitted to the Romans. In B. C. 195, when T. Flamininus marched against Nabis, Lucius went out with 40 sail to join him in his operations : he took several maritime towns, some of which were conquered by force, while others submitted voluntarily, and he then proceeded to Gythium, the great arsenal of Sparta. When Titus began besieging the same place by land, Gorgopas, the commander of the garrison, treacherously surrendered the town to the Romans.
In B. C. 193, L. Flamininus sued for the consulship, and, as the remembrance of his exploits in Greece and of his subsequen triumph was yet fresh, he was elected for the year 192, together with Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus.
He received Gaul as his province, and was ordered to hold the comitia. While on his march into his province, he fell in with the Ligurians in the neighbourhood of Pisa, and gained a great battle : 9000 enemies fell, and the rest fled to their camp, which was then besieged.
In the night following, however, the Ligurians made their escape, and the next morning the deserted camp fell into the hands of the Romans, Lucius then advanced into the country of the Boians, of which he ravaged the parts through which he passed. Towards the end of the year he went to Rome to conduct the elections for the next year, and when this was done, he returned to the country of the boians, who submitted to him without taking up arms. Upon his return to Rome, he levied a large army, at the command of the senate, that the new consuls, immediately after entering upon their office, might have forces ready to set out against Anticohus. In B. C. 191 he was appointed legate to the consul M'. Acilius Glabrio, who had to conduct the war in Greece. In B. C. 184, M. Porcius Cato, who was then censor, ejected L. Quintius Flamininus from the senate, and then delivered a most severe speech against him for crimes which he had committed seven years before in his consulship. Among the various charges he brought against Lucius, there is one which exhibits him in a truly diabolical light.
It seems that he had become acquainted in Greece with the vice of paederastia, and when in his consulship he went to the north of Italy, he took with him his favourite youth, a young Carthaginian, of the name of Philippus.
This youth had often complained that Flaimininus had never afforded him an opportunity of seeing a gladiatorial exhibition. Once while Flamininus and his favourite were feasting and drinking in their tent, there came a noble Boian, who, with his children, took refuge in the consul's camp.
He was introduced into the tent, and stated through an interpreter what he had to say.
Before he had finished Flamininus asked his favourite whether he would not like to see a Gaul die, and scarcely had the youth answered in the affirmative, when Flamininus struck the Boian's head with his sword, and when the man endeavoured to escape, imploring the assistance of the bystanders, the consul ran his sword through his body and killed him for the amusement of the contemptible youth. Valerius Antias related a similar and equally horrible crime of this Flamininus.
He died in B. C. 170, holding at the time a priestly office. (Liv. 31.4
, 16, 39, 33.16
, 20, &c., 40, &c. 36.1
, 2, 39.42
, 43, 40.12
; V. Max. 2.9.3
; Cic. de Senect.
12; Aurel. Vict. de Vir. Illustr.
47; Plut. Cat.
18; Senec. Controv.