, Strab.), a city of Liguria, situated on the N. side of the Apennines in the valley of the Bormida: now called Acqui.
Its name sufficiently indicates that it owed its origin to the mineral springs which were found there, and Pliny notices it (31.2) as one of the most remarkable instances where this circum-stance had given rise to a considerable town.
It is probable that it did not become a place of any importance until after the Roman conquest of Liguria, nor do we find any actual mention of it under the [p. 1.170]
Republic, but it was already a considerable town in the days of Strabo, and under the Roman Empire became one of the most flourishing and important cities of Liguria, a position which we find it retaining down to a late period.
The inhabitants bear on an inscription the name “Aquenses Statiellenses.” It was the chief place of the tribe of the STATIELLI
and one of the principal military stations in this part of Italy. (Strab. v. p.217
; Plin. Nat. 3.5. s. 7
; Orell. Inscr.
4927; Inser. ap. Spon. Misc. Ant.
p. 164; Notit. Dign. p. 121.)
It is still mentioned by Paulus Diaconus among the chief cities of this province at the time of the Lombard invasion: and Liutprand of Cremona, a writer of the tenth century, speaks of the Roman Thermae, constructed on a scale of the greatest splendour, as still existing there in his time. (P. Diac. 2.16 ; Liutprand, Hist.
The modern city of Acqui
is a large and flourishing place, and its mineral waters are still much frequented. Some remains of the ancient baths as well as portions of an aqueduct, are still visible, while very numerous inscriptions, chiefly sepulchral, have been discovered there, as well as innumerable urns, lamps, coins, and other relics of antiquity.
We learn from the Itineraries that a branch of the Via Aurelia quitted the coast at Vada Sabbata (Vado
) and crossed the Apennines to Aquae Statiellae, from whence it communicated by Dertona with Placentia on the Via Aemilia.
The distance from Vada Sabbata to Aquae is given as 52 R. miles. (Itin. Ant. p. 294; Tab. Peut.)