FABRATE´RIA Φαβρατερία, Strab. v. p.237
: Eth. Fabraternus
: S. Giovanni in Carico
), a city of Latium, situated on the Via Latina, between Frusino and Aquinum, and near the confluence of the Liris with the Trerus or Sacco.
(Strab. l.c.; Itin. Ant.
pp. 303, 305.)
It was originally a Volscian city, but in B.C. 329 it is mentioned as sending deputies to Rome, to place itself under the protection of the republic against the Samnites, who were at that time pressing on in the valley of the Liris. (Liv. 8.19
.) We hear no more of it till B.C. 124, when it was one of the places at which a Roman colony was established by C. Gracchus. (Vell. 1.15
.) From this circumstance probably arose the distinction, recognised both by Pliny and by inscriptions, between the “Fabraterni novi” and “Fabraterni veteres” (Plin. Nat. 3.5. s. 9
; Orell. Inscr.
101, 102), the latter being the original inhabitants of the municipium.
It is uncertain whether the colony referred to by the Liber de Colonies is the same with that of Gracchus, or one of later date. (Lib. Colon.
But though the colonists and the old inhabitants appear to have formed two separate municipal bodies, it is not certain whether they occupied different sites.
It is clear that the Fabrateria of Strabo and the Itineraries, which they place on
the Via Latina, could not have occupied the site of the modern Falvaterra,
a village on a hill some distance to the S. of the line of that road: and there seems little doubt from the inscriptions found there that the ruins still visible on the right bank of the Liris, just below its junction with the Tolero
are those of Fabrateria Nova.
These ruins, which have been regarded by many writers as those of Fregellae [FREGELLAE
], are situated in the territory of S. Giovanni in Carico,
about three miles from Falvaterra
and four from Ceprano:
they indicate a town of considerable importance, of which portions of the city walls are still extant, as well as the remains of a temple, and fragments of other buildings of reticulated masonry. Numerous portions of pavements, mosaics, and other ancient remains have been also found on the spot. (Romanelli, vol. iii. p. 380; Chaupy, Maison d'Horace,
vol. iii. p. 476; Mommsen, Inscr. Regn. Neap.
The site of Fabrateria Vetus is uncertain: it may have occupied the same position as the modern Falvaterra;
but the discovery of inscriptions relating to it at Ceccano,
more than 12 miles higher up the valley of the Tolero,
renders it probable that its site must be transferred thither. (Mommsen, l.c.
Cicero incidentally notices Fabrateria as a town on the Via Latina, where Antony and his friends had concocted plots against him (Cic. Fam. 9.2. 4
): and Juvenal mentions it as a quiet and cheap country town, like the neighbouring Sora, where a good house could be obtained at a moderate price (Juv. 3.224
). Both these notices probably relate to the new
town of the name.