2. son of the preceding, and survivor of the three brethren who fought with the three Curiatii for the supremacy of Rome over Alba. When his two brothers had fallen, Horatius was still unhurt, and by a pretended flight vanquished his three wounded opponents, by encountering them severally. Horatius returned in triumph, bearing his threefold spoils.
As he approached the Capene gate his sister [HORATIA] met him, and recognised on his shoulders the mantle of one of the Curiatii, her betrothed lover. Her importunate grief drew on her the wrath of Horatius, who stabbed her, exclaiming "so perish every Roman woman who bewails a foe." For this murder he was adjudged by the duumviri to be scourged with covered head, and hanged on the hapless tree. Horatius appealed to his peers, the burghers or populus; and his father pronounced him guiltless, or he would have punished him by the paternal power.
The populus acquitted Horatius, but prescribed a form of punishment.
With veiled head, led by his father, Horatius passed under a yoke or gibbet-tigillum sororium. (Fest. s. v. Soror. Tigillum,
p. 297, ed. Müller.)
In memory of the crime and its expiation, the yoke was repaired from age to age, altars were raised to Juno Sororia and to Janus, and sacrifices were entailed on the Horatian family.
In the war which shortly followed the combat of the three brethren, Horatius was entrusted by the king, Tullus Hostilius, with the destruction of Alba. (Dionys. A. R. 3.13
; Liv. 1.24
; V. Max. 6.3.6
; Flor. 1.3
; Cic. pro Mil.
3; Schol. Bob. in Milon.
p. 277, ed. Orelli; Id. de Invent.
2.20; Victorin. Cic. de Invent.
1.30; Plut. Parall. Min.
16; Aurel. Vict. de Vir. III.
4; Zonar. 7.6