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Rome engulfed first her near neighbours, then Italy and finally much of the known world. Her expansion was so successful that the history and culture of her main rivals, the Samnites, is too often overlooked. The author describes Samnium and the language of the Samnites, then reconstructs their culture, religion, economy and governmental system. Professor Salmon discusses their policy in Italy and their relations with Rome. The subsequent description of the three Samnite Wars and the Pyrrhic War critically reinterprets the principally Roman evidence for the military history of Roman Italy. Professor Salmon presents evidence about Samnium in the political organisation and civilisation of Roman Italy, and includes an important discussion of the Social War from the Italian point of view rather than from the purely Roman viewpoint. Originally published in 1967, much of the evidence collected and interpreted by Professor Salmon in this study - involving art, archeaology, topography and literary sources - was not generally accessible at the time. A fresh insight was offered into the history of Republican Rome as well as Samnium itself.
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Table of Contents

List of maps; List of plates; Preface; 1. The sources; 2. The land; 3. The people; 4. The culture; 5. The first Samnite war; 6. The second Samnite war; 7. The third Samnite war; 8. The Pyrrhic war; 9. Roman domination; 10. The end of the Samnites; 11. Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.

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