3. L. Sicinius
Dentatus, also named Siccius
in the manuscripts and editions of several ancient authors, is called by A. Gellius and others the Roman Achilles.
He is said to have fought in a hundred and twenty battles, to have slain eight of the enemy in single combat, to have received forty-five wounds on the front of his body, the scars of which remained, to have earned honorary rewards innumerable, and to have accompanied the triumphs of nine generals, whose victories were principally owing to his valour.
He was tribune of the plebs in B. C. 454, in which year he brought to trial before the people T. Romilius, the consul of the preceding year, and procured his condemnation.
After the defeat of the Romans in the campaign against the Sabines, in the second decemvirate, B. C. 450, since the troops were discontented with the government, and therefore did not fight with their usual valour, Sicinius endeavored to persuade them to secede to the Sacred Mount, as their forefathers had done. His death was accordingly resolved upon by the decemvirs, and Q. Fabius, who commanded the army, sent him along with a band of assassins to view the country.
In a lonely spot they fell upon him and slew him, but not until he had destroyed most of the traitors. His comrades, who were told that he had fallen in an ambush of the enemy, discovered the foul treachery that had been practised upon him, by seeing him surrounded by Roman soldiers, who had evidently fallen by his hand.
The decemvirs endeavoured to pacify the soldiers by burying Sicinius with great pomp, and they succeeded to some extent ; but men did not forget or forgive the treacherous deed.
Dionys. A. R. 10.48
; Liv. 3.43
; Gel. 2.11
; Plin. Nat. 7.27
; V. Max. 2.3.24
; Niebuhr, Hist. of Rome,
vol. ii. p. 346.