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SALPINUM (Eth. Salpinas), an ancient city of Etruria, mentioned only by Livy (5.31, 32), who speaks of the Salpinates as assisting the Volsinians in their war against Rome in B.C. 389. It is clear from the manner in which they are here spoken of that they were an independent people, with a considerable territory and a fortified city; and the manner in which they are associated with the powerful Volsinians would lead to the inference that they also must have been a people of considerable power. Yet no subsequent mention of their name is found, and all trace of their existence disappears. Niebuhr conjectures that Salpinum occupied the site of the [p. 2.886]modern Orvieto, the name of which is evidently a corruption of Urbs Vetus, the form used by Paulus Diaconus in the seventh century (P. Diac. 4.33): there is, therefore, little doubt that the site was one of a more ancient Etruscan city; and its proximity to Volsinii renders it probable enough that it may have been Salpinum. But no reliance can be placed upon any such conclusion. (Niebuhr, vol. ii. p. 493.)


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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 5, 32
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 5, 31
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