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And now Marcellus, having been appointed consul for the third time,1 sailed to Sicily. For Hannibal's successes in the war had encouraged the Carthaginians to attempt anew the conquest of the island, especially now that Syracuse was in confusion after the death of the tyrant Hieronymus. For this reason the Romans also had previously sent a force thither under the command of Appius.

1 In 214 B.C. Fabius Maximus was his colleague.

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