Eth. RE´GIUM LE´PIDI
or RE´GIUM LE´PIDUM
, Strab.; Ῥήγιον Λεπίδιον
, Ptol.: Eth. Regiensis
), sometimes also called simply REGIUM, a town of Gallia Cispadana, situated on the Via Aemilia, between Mutina and Parma, at the distance of 17 miles from the former and 18 from the latter city. (Itin. Ant.
pp. 99, 127; Strab. v. p.216
.) We have no account of its foundation or origin ; but the name would raise a presumption that it was founded, or at least settled and enlarged, by Aemilius Lepidus when he constructed the Aemilian Way ; and this is confirmed by a passage of Festus, from which it appears that it was originally called Forum Lepidi. (Fest. s. v. Rhegium,
The origin of the appellation of Regium, which completely superseded the former name, is unknown.
It did not become a colony like the neighbouring cities of Mutina and Parma, and evidently never rose to the same degree of opulence and prosperity as those cities, but became, nevertheless, a flourishing municipal town.
It is repeatedly mentioned during the civil war with M. Antonius, both before and after the battle of Mutina (Cic. Fam. 11.9
); and at a somewhat earlier period it was there that M. Brutus, the father of the murderer of Caesar, was put to death by Pompey in B.C. 79. (Oros. 5.22
; Plut. Pomp. 16
.) Its name scarcely occurs in history during the Roman Empire ; but its municipal consideration is attested by inscriptions, and it is mentioned by all the geographers among the towns on the Via Aemilia, though ranked by Strabo with those of the second class. (Strab. v. p.216
; Plin. Nat. 3.15. s. 20
; Ptol. 3.1.46
; Orell. Inscr.
3983, 4133; Tac. Hist. 2.50
; Phlegon, Macrob.
1.) Ptolemy alone gives it the title of a Colonia, which is probably a mistake ; it was certainly not such in the time of Pliny, nor is it so designated in any extant inscription. Zumpt, however, supposes that it may have received a colony under Trajan or Hadrian. (Zumpt, de Colon.
p. 403.) St. Ambrose notices Regium as well as Placentia and Mutina among the cities which had fallen into great decay before the close of the fourth century. (Ambros. Ep.
It was not long before this that an attempt had been made by the emperor Gratian to repair the desolation of this part of Italy by settling a body of Gothic captives in the territory of Regium, Parma, and the neighbouring cities. (Amm. Marc. 31.9.4
The continued existence of Regium at a late period is proved by the Itineraries and Tabula (Itin. Ant.
pp. 283, 287; Itin. Hier.
p. 616; Tab. Peut.
), and it is mentioned long after the fall of the Western Empire by Paulus Diaconus among the “locupletes urbes” of Aemilia. (P. Diac. Hist. Lang.
In the middle ages it rose to a great degree of prosperity, and Reggio
is still a considerable town with about 16000 inhabitants. Its episcopal see dates from the fifth century.
The tract called the CAMPI MACRI, celebrated for the excellence of its wool, was apparently included in the territory of Regium Lepidum.