In 280 B.C. Pyrrhus unsuccessfully attacked its walls; and in the Second Punic War Hannibal was deterred by their strength from attempting to make himself master of the town.
The later part treated of the events of the first Punic war in the style of a metrical chronicle.
At the outbreak of the Second Punic War (219 B.C.) it was a large and commercially prosperous town of native - not Greek - origin.
Authorities are generally agreed in recog nizing three periods: - (1) from the end of the Regal epoch to the second Punic War, when Rome was influenced by other peoples in Italy, with whom she was brought into contact by commerce or war; (2) from the second Punic War to the end of the Republic, when contact with Greek and oriental sources and the growth of literature revolutionized religious notions and led to a philosophic scepticism; (3) the Imperial epoch, opening with a revival of old religious notions and later marked by the official worship of the deified emperors and the wide influence of oriental cults.
There is a tradition that the Delphian oracle was consulted as early as the period of the kings during the reign of Tarquinius Superbus, and in 4 3 o a temple was dedicated to Apollo on the occasion of a pestilence, and during the Second Punic War (in 212) the Ludi Apollinares were instituted in his honour.
The reign of Domitian, although it silenced the more independent spirits of the time, Tacitus and Juvenal, witnessed more important contributions to Roman literature than any age since the Augustan, - among them the Institutes of Quintilian, the Punic War of Silius Italicus, the epics and the Silvae of Statius, and the Epigrams of Martial.
During the First Punic War it belonged to the kingdom of Hiero, and after his death it enjoyed an exceptionally favoured position with regard to Rome, being like Messana and Netum, a civitas foederata.
Notwithstanding this they espoused the cause of Hannibal during the Second Punic War (216 B.C.), and their territory during several campaigns was ravaged by both armies.
Niebuhr, Lectures on the History of Rome from the first Punic War (ed.
The importance of the discoveries lies in the fact that the ditch which in later times divided the provinces of Africa vetus and Africa nova was at the time of the Third Punic War the boundary of Carthaginian territory (R.