This city was much the wealthiest of those beyond the Ebro and was situated about a mile from the sea. Its inhabitants are said to have come originally from the island of Zacynthus,Saguntum is only a Latinized form of , the name of a small island (now Zante) off the coast of Elis. and to have included also a strain from the Ardeate Rutulians.Ardea (the seat of King Turnus, according to Virgil, Aen. VII. 409 ff.) was the chief city of the Rutuli and had been a Roman colony since 442 B.C.
Be this as it may, they had attained quickly to their great prosperity, whether owing to the produce of the sea or the land,Polybius, III. xviii. 3, speaks of the great fertility of their territory, and under the empire Saguntum was famous for its export of earthenware. to the growth of their population, or to theB.C. 219 integrity of their discipline, which caused
them to keep faith with their allies even to their own undoing.
Crossing their borders with a