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geon, and "then suddenly exposed to the full rays of a burning sun. When the news of the barbarous death of Regulus reached Rome, the senate is said to have given Hamilcar and Bostar, two of the noblest Carthaginian prisoners, to the family 'of Regulus, who revenged themselves by putting them to death with cruel torments. (Liv. Epit. 18 ; Gell. vi. 4 ; Diod. xxiv. p. 566, ed. Wesseling; Appian, Sic. 2, Pun. 4 ; Dion Cass. Fraym. p. 62, ed. Reimarus, p. 541, ed. Maii; Zonar. viii. 15 ; Val. Max. i. 1. § 14, ix. 2. ext. 1 ; Aurel. Vict. de Vir. III. 40 ; Flor. ii. 2 ; Cic. de Off. iii. 26, pro Seat. 59, Cat. 20, in Pison. 19, de Fin. v. 27, 29, et alibi; .Hor. Carm. iii. 5 ; Sil. Ital. vi. 299, &c.)
This celebrated tale, however, has not been allowed to pass without question in modern times. Even as early as the sixteenth century Palmerius declared it to be a fable, and supposed that it was invented in order to excuse the cruelties perpetrated by the family of Regulus on the Carthaginian pri-.soners committed to their custody. (See the remarks of Palmerius, in Schweighauser's Appian, vol. iii. p. 394.) This opinion has been adopted by many modern writers ; but their chief argument is the silence of Polybius respecting it. Niebuhr believes (Hist, of Rome, vol. iii. p. 599) that Regulus died a natural death ; but since all the ancient authorities agree in stating that he was put to death by the Carthaginians, we see no reason for disbelieving this fact, though the account of his barbarous treatment is probably only one of those calumnies which the Romans constantly indulged in against their hated rivals. The pride and arrogance with which ne treated the Carthaginians in the hour of his success must have deeply exasperated the people against him ; and it is therefore not surprising that he fell a victim to their vengeance when nothing was any longer to be gained from his life. The question of the death of Regulus is discussed at length byHalthaus ( Geschichte Roms im Zeitalter der Punisehen Kriege, Leipzig, 1846, pp. 356— 369), who maintains the truth of the common account.
Regulus was one of the favourite characters of early Roman story. Not only was he celebrated on account of his heroism in giving the senate advice which secured him a martyr's death, but also on account of his frugality and simplicity of life. Like Fabricius and Curius he lived on his hereditary farm which he cultivated with his own hands ; and subsequent ages loved to tell how he petitioned the senate for his recall from Africa when he was in the full career of victory, as his farm was going to ruin in his absence, and his family was suffering from want. (Comp. Liv. Epit. 18 ; Val. Max. iv. 4. § 6.)
4. C. atilius M. p. M. n. regulus serra-nus, was consul for the first time in B. c. 257, with Cn. Cornelius Blasio, and prosecuted the war against the Carthaginians. He defeated the Carthaginian fleet off the Liparaean islands, though not without considerable loss ; obtained possession of the islands of Lipara and Melite, which he laid waste with fire and sword, and received the honour of a naval triumph on his return to Rome (Polyb. i. 25 ; Zonar. viii. 12 ; Oros. iv. 8 ; Fasti Capitol.). Regulus was consul a second time in b. c. 250, with L. Manlius Vulso. In this year the Romans gained a brilliant victory at Panormus, under the proconsul Metellus, and thinking that the time had now come to bring the war to a conclusion, they
sent the consuls to Sicily with an army of four legions and two hundred ships. Regulus and his colleague undertook the siege of Lilybaeum, the most important possession of the Carthaginians in Sicily ; but they were foiled in their attempts to carry the place by storm, and after losing a great number of men, were obliged to turn the siege into a blockade. (Polyb. i. 39, 41—48 ; Zonar. viii. 15 ; Oros. iv. 10 ; Diod. Fragm. xxiv.)
5. M. atilius M. f. M. n. regulus, son of the Regulus who perished in Africa [No. 3], was consul for the first time in b. c. 227, with P. Valerius Flaccus, in which year no event of importance is recorded (Fasti; Gell. iv. 3). He was elected consul a second time in b.c. 217, to supply the place of C. Flaminius, who had fallen in the battle of the Trasimene lake. He carried on the war against Hannibal together with his colleague Ser-vilius Geminus, on the principles of the dictator Fabius. At the end of their year of office their imperium was prolonged, as the new consuls had not yet been elected ; but when Aemilius Paulus and Terentius Varro were at length appointed, and took the field, Regulus was allowed to return to Rome on account of his age, and his colleague Ser-vilius remained with the army (Liv. xxii. 25, 32, 34, 40). Polybius, on the contrary, says (iii. 114, 116) that Regulus remained with the new consuls, and fell at the battle of Cannae, where he commanded, with Servilius, the centre of the line. This statement, however, is erroneous, and we must for once follow Livy in preference to Polybius, since it is certain that the same Regulus was censor two years after the battle of Cannae. (Comp. Perizo-nius, Animadv. Hist. c. 1, sub fin. ; and Schweig-hauser, ad Polyb. iii. 114.)
After the battle of Cannae, b. c. 216, Regulus was one of the triumviri mensarii, who were appointed on account of the scarcity of money. In B. c. 214 he was censor with P. Furius Philus. These censors punished with severity all persons who had failed in their duty to the state during the great calamities which Rome had lately experienced. All those who had formed the project of leaving Italy after the battle of Cannae, and all those who had been taken prisoners by Hannibal, and when sent as ambassadors to Rome on the promise of returning to the Carthaginian camp, had not redeemed their word, were reduced to the condition of aerarians. The same punishment was inflicted on all the citizens who had neglected to serve in the army for four years without having a valid ground of excuse. Towards the end of the year, when the new tribunes of the people entered upon their duties, one of their number, Metellus, who had been reduced to the condition of an aerarian by the censors, attempted to bring these magistrates to trial before the people, but was prevented by the other tribunes from prosecuting such an unprecedented course [metellus, No. 2]. As Furius Philus died at the beginning of the following year, before the solemn purification (lustrum) of the people had been performed, Regulus, as was usual in such cases, resigned his office. (Liv. xxiii. 21, xxiv. 11, 18, 43 ; Val. Max. ii. 9. § 8.)