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Victory Over the Insubres

The Consuls of the next year, however, Publius Furius
B. C. 223.
Philus and Caius Flaminius, once more invaded the Celtic lands, marching through the territory of the Anamares, who live not far from Placentia.1 Having secured the friendship of this tribe, they crossed into the country of the Insubres, near the confluence of the Adua and Padus. They suffered some annoyance from the enemy, as they were crossing the river, and as they were pitching their camp; and after remaining for a short time, they made terms with the Insubres and left their country. After a circuitous march of several days, they crossed the River Clusius, and came into the territory of the Cenomani. As these people were allies of Rome, they reinforced the army with some of their men, which then descended once more from the Alpine regions into the plains belonging to the Insubres, and began laying waste their land and plundering their houses. The Insubrian chiefs, seeing that nothing could change the determination of the Romans to destroy them, determined that they had better try their fortune by a great and decisive battle. They therefore mustered all their forces, took down from the temple of Minerva the golden standards, which are called "the immovables," and having made other necessary preparations, in high spirits and formidable array, encamped opposite to their enemies to the number of fifty thousand. Seeing themselves thus outnumbered, the Romans at first determined to avail themselves of the forces of the allied Celtic tribes; but when they reflected on the fickle character of the Gauls, and that they were about to fight with an enemy of the same race as these auxiliary troops, they hesitated to associate such men with themselves, at a crisis of such danger, and in an action of such importance. However, they finally decided to do this. They themselves stayed on the side of the river next the enemy: and sending the Celtic contingent to the other side, they pulled up the bridges; which at once precluded any fear of danger from them, and left themselves no hope of safety except in victory; the impassable river being thus in their rear. These dispositions made, they were ready to engage.

1 Others read Ananes and Marseilles [Ἀνάνων . . . Μασσαλίας]; but it seems impossible that the Roman march should have extended so far.

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