Titus Livius’ History of Rome Summary [Bk1Ch7]

I haven’t done of these summaries in a long time, so I decided I would read over chapter 7 again and write down a brief overview of the happenings so far. Hopefully this helps you in some way.

  • Remus sees six vultures (or eagles) pass over the Aventine hill and demands that they build the city there
  • Romulus, on the other hand, sees twelve vultures over the Palatine Hill
  • In the conflict that arose from an argument, Remus was killed. It is said that Romulus slew him as Remus jumped over his walls. In this way, the dispute was settled and Rome was founded
  • Romulus therefore organised religious worship, notably of Hercules
  • Legend had it that at that spot, Hercules drove his oxen to the river bank and laid down to sleep
  • Cacus, a shepherd, admired the beauty of the oxen and planned to steal them. He dragged them backwards so that the hoof-prints would face in the opposite way to the direction they were actually travelling in. Hence, Hercules would be thrown off the track
  • Ultimately, Hercules found the cave in which Cacus had hidden the oxen and he clubbed him to death.
  • The shepherds called in outrage at such a murder and alerted the king, Evander, of the happening
  • Instead of punishing Hercules, Evander recognised his greatness and allowed him to build an altar
  • One of the herd was cut open and the entrails were inspected. Many years later, Romulus also adopted this tradition
  • Henceforth, the act of inspecting the gut of a sacrificed animal (like a sheep) was a common ritual in Ancient Rome

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