viae proelium exceperat. 8itaque principio pugnae vigoris aliquid in corporibus animisque fuit, et turbaverant primo Romanos; deinde aequata paulisper pugna est. in hoc discrimine ludos Iovi, si fudisset cecidissetque hostes, praetor1 vovit. 9tandem gradum acrius intulere Romani cessitque Lusitanus, deinde prorsus terga dedit; et cum institissent fugientibus victores, ad duodecim milia hostium sunt caesa, 10capti quingenti quadraginta, omnes ferme equites, et signa militaria capta centum triginta quattuor; de exercitu Romano septuaginta et tres amissi. 11pugnatum haud procul Ilipa urbe est: eo victorem opulentum praeda exercitum P. Cornelius reduxit. ea omnis ante urbem exposita est, 12potestasque dominis suas res cognoscendi facta est; cetera vendenda quaestori data; quod inde refectum est, militi divisum.
2. Nondum ab Roma profectus erat C. Flaminius praetor cum haec in Hispania gerebantur. 2itaque adversae quam secundae res per ipsum amicosque eius magis sermonibus celebrabantur; 3et temptaverat, quoniam bellum ingens in provincia exarsisset, et exiguas reliquias exercitus ab Sex. Digitio atque eas ipsas plenas pavoris ac fugae accepturus esset, 4ut sibi unam ex urbanis legionibus decernerent, ad quam cum militem ab se ipso scriptum ex
followed the exertion of the march with no respite. Thus, the Lusitanians began the fight with a measure of energy and determination, and had initially thrown the Romans into disorder, but then it gradually became an evenly matched struggle. At this critical juncture the praetor made a vow of games to Jupiter should he drive back and cut down the enemy.4 Eventually the Romans pushed ahead with greater ferocity, while the Lusitanians gave ground and then really took flight. As the victors pressed their advantage against those in flight, some 12,000 of the enemy were cut down, 540 taken prisoner—almost all cavalrymen—and 134 military standards captured. Losses from the Roman army totaled 73. The battle was fought not far from the city of Ilipa, and it was to this town that Publius Cornelius brought back his conquering army rich with spoils. These were all set out in front of the town and owners were given the opportunity to identify what was theirs.5 The remainder was given to the quaestor to be sold, and the proceeds from them were divided among the soldiers.
2. The praetor Gaius Flaminius6 had not yet left Rome when this was taking place in Spain; thus conversations between him and his friends7 centered more on the failures than the successes there. Since a serious war had flared up in the province, and since he was to take over from Sextus Digitius the little that remained of his army (which itself was full of fear and dejection), Flaminius had tried to have the senate assign him one of the urban legions. To this he would add the soldiers he had enrolled
- 4Cf. 36.36.1–2 for the vow’s fulfillment (in 191).
- 5Ilipa is probably Ilipa Magna (Barr. 26 E4; TIR J-30, 201), today Alcala del Rio in the municipality of Seville. The Lusitanians had evidently looted it before Scipio attacked them.
- 6C. Flaminius (3): quaestor in 209, curule aedile 196, praetor this year (193), and later consul (187). Assigned Hither Spain: 34.55.6.
- 7That is, his political supporters.