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Carsten Hjort Lange & Frederik Juliaan Vervaet


Edizioni Quasar
The Roman Republican Triumph
Beyond the Spectacle



Analecta Romana Instituti Danici – Supplementum XLV
Accademia di Danimarca, via Omero, 18, I – 00197, Rome

© 2014 Edizioni Quasar di Severino Tognon srl, Roma
ISBN 978-88-7140-576-6

Published with the support of grants from:

The Carlsberg Foundation

Cover: The Fasti Capitolini, containing the Fasti Consulares and the Fasti Triumphales.
Rome, Musei Capitolini, Palazzo dei Conservatori, Sala della Lupa. Photo: Courtesy of
© Archivio Fotografico dei Musei Capitolini.

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The Triumph in the Roman Republic:
Frequency, Fluctuation and Policy

by John Rich

Abstract. This paper focuses on the list of triumphs as preserved on inscriptions and, where they are lost, in literary
sources. The reconstruction and reliability of the list is discussed, and its evidence is used to analyse and account for
triumphal frequency and fluctuations. The senate’s policy on the award of triumphs is then interpreted in the light of
this material. It is argued that the fluctuations in the pattern of triumphs were chiefly the result of changes in Roman
warfare and military commitments, and that the senate showed rather more consistency in awarding triumphs than has
sometimes been supposed. Senatorial deliberations on individual applications chiefly sought to determine whether the
applicant had won victories meriting a triumph. In time, an increasing part was played by applicants’ claims to have
ended their war, but this never became a necessary requirement. As Roman commitments changed, triumphs were some-
times sought in circumstances which did not meet customary expectations, and in such cases ovations were sometimes
used as compromise solutions.

Although recent years have been richly productive in the study of the Roman triumph, relatively
little attention has been paid to the institution’s development over time. Of the major recent treat-
ments, only that of Bastien (2007) takes even a partially diachronic approach. In this paper I seek to
use the list of recorded triumphs to analyse the evolution of Roman triumphal practice.
I dealt briefly with this topic in an earlier paper (Rich 1993, 47-53) as part of a critique of the
interpretation of Roman warfare and imperialism advanced by Harris (1979) and North (1981).
They presented a model of the Roman social system under the Republic as geared to continuous
war and requiring a regular flow of the opportunities and profits of war. In response, I drew atten-
tion to fluctuations both in Roman war-making and in benefits such as triumphs, illustrating the
case with a bar-chart showing triumphs per decade for the period 330-91 BC. Here I offer a more
refined analysis of the triumphal record down to the triumph in 19 BC of L. Cornelius Balbus, the
last non-member of the imperial family to hold a full triumph, and explore the implications of the
record for the understanding of Roman practice and policy.
The paper also engages with the much disputed issue of the senate’s decision-making on applica-
tions for triumphs. Discussion of this topic has focused largely on Livy’s ample reports of triumphal
debates. Some new light may be shed by considering the question in the broader perspective of the
triumphal record across the whole Republican period.
In Section 1 I discuss the problems of reconstructing the list of triumphs, and in Section 2 its
reliability. Section 3 presents a tabular analysis of the list by historical periods (Tables 2-5), show-
ing changes in the frequency of triumphs overall, and also changes relative to the various types of
triumphs, to commanders’ status, and to the regions in which triumphs were won. After a brief dis-
cussion of the authorization of triumphs (Section 4), the remaining sections (Sections 5-14) analyse
the implications of the tabular data for successive historical periods. The Appendix presents the
reconstructed triumphal list in a simplified form as a numbered table (Table 6, at pp. 246-252),
incorporating the triumphs attested in the inscribed lists and, where they are not extant, by other
sources. Individual triumphs are referred to below by this numeration.

1. Reconstructing the list of triumphs

Our primary source for the list of triumphs is the inscription recording consuls and triumphs which
was erected on Luna marble in the Forum Romanum under Augustus. Extensive fragments of these
inscribed lists were discovered in 1546-1547 and set up in the Palazzo dei Conservatori on the Cap-
itoline Hill, where they still remain. As a result they are customarily known as the Fasti Capitolini,
and I refer to them below by this term and as the Capitoline consular and triumphal lists. Further
fragments of both lists continued to be discovered up to the early twentieth century. These and other
inscribed lists of consuls and triumphs have been intensively studied since the Renaissance, and are
now consulted in the superb edition by Degrassi (1947).1
Degrassi used the term Fasti Triumphales for the inscribed lists of triumphs, and, since the publi-
cation of his edition, it has become established in scholarly usage. However, the term not only lacks
ancient authority, but is inappropriate, since the word fasti was in fact used solely for calendars and
lists of chief magistrates, and I have accordingly avoided it below.2
Nedergaard’s recent research has confirmed Degrassi’s view that the structure on which the Fasti
Capitolini were originally set up was the triple Arch of Augustus in the Forum Romanum, imme-
diately to the south of the Temple of Divus Julius, and not, as has often been supposed, the Regia.3
The identity of the arch is disputed: many scholars suppose that it was erected in celebration of
Augustus’ Parthian settlement of 20 BC, but I have argued that it was originally erected in honour of
his Actium victory and subsequently remodelled to commemorate the Parthian settlement as well.4
The list of consuls was inscribed on the arch on four tablets, each set in a Corinthian framing.
The triumphs were inscribed on four Doric pilasters flanking two of the tablets. The first and second
triumphal pilasters flanked the third consular tablet, and the two lower courses of the whole of this
wall have survived virtually intact.5 Degrassi, like earlier editors from Henzen on, supposed that the
third and fourth pilasters flanked the fourth tablet, and that, since the blocks comprising this tablet
had the same measurements as those of the third, these pilasters were accordingly commensurate
with the first two. However, Nedergaard has argued that these pilasters must have flanked not the
fourth, but either the first or second tablet, with some corresponding changes to the measurements
of their component blocks.6
The four pilasters listed triumphs from Romulus down to Balbus in 19 BC. 41 fragments survive
from these pilasters. The first two pilasters, covering triumphs down to respectively 302 and 222 BC,
are relatively well preserved. Only small fragments survive of the third pilaster, covering triumphs
down to 129, and there are extensive gaps also in the fourth pilaster. Building on the work of his pre-
decessors, Degrassi was able to establish the placing of each of the fragments on the pilasters and to
calculate the number of missing lines where there are gaps between fragments: his reconstruction is
illustrated on his Tab. XX-XXI.7 For the larger gaps complete precision is not possible, but Degrassi’s
estimates are likely to be accurate within one or two lines. However, Nedergaard’s hypothesis would
entail recalculation of some of the missing lines on the third and fourth pilasters.

1. On the Fasti Capitolini and their location see Degrassi term used in CIL 12, but this too lacks any ancient au-
1945/46 and 1947, 1-23, with Tab. I-XXVI. For his edition thority.
of the triumphal lists see Degrassi 1947, 64-87, 338-345, 3. Nedergaard 1993, 1994-95, 2001, 2004. For the Regia as
534-571, with Tab. XLVIII-LIV, XCVIII-CIV. Degrassi’s edi- the location see most recently Simpson 1993.
tion replaced the previously standard edition by G. Hen- 4. Rich 1998, 97-115. For other recent discussions of the
zen and C. Hülsen in CIL 12 (1893), pp. 1-15, 43-54, 75- arch see Nedergaard 1994-95, 2001; Scott 2001; Rose
78, 168-181. Degrassi 1954 is a briefer edition of the Fasti 2005, 28-36.
Capitolini alone. For recent discussions of the inscribed 5. See the reconstruction drawing by G. Gatti at Degrassi
triumphal lists see Spannagel 1999, 245-252; Itgenshorst 1947, Tab. XXII, reproduced by Nedergaard 2001, 108,
2004; Beard 2003 and 2007, 62-6, 72-80, 295-305; Bastien and Rose 2005, 32.
2007, 41-84; Burgess and Kulikowski 2013, 160-167. 6. See Degrassi 1947, 17-18; Nedergaard 2001, 118-119,
2. The inappropriateness of Degrassi’s term is correctly and 2004, 85-92.
noted by Feeney 2007, 167-168; Burgess and Kulikowski 7. For earlier reconstructions see CIL 12, pp. 5-11; Schön
2013, 162. The latter revert to Acta Triumphorum, the 1893; Pais 1920, 355-369.

Each entry normally records the following information: the full name (including filiation) of the
triumphing commander; his official status when triumphing (king, consul, dictator, praetor, procon-
sul or propraetor); the enemy or enemies from whom the triumph had been won, using the preposi-
tion de, or for many later entries the region from which it had been won, using ex; the calendar date
of the triumph; and (at the end of the first line) the year from a dating of 752 BC for the foundation
of Rome.8 We are also informed when a celebration fell into one of the following special catego-
ries: ovations, that is, lesser triumphs in which the commander wore the normal toga praetexta of
a magistrate and a myrtle rather than a laurel wreath and processed not in a chariot, but on foot;
naval triumphs; and triumphs celebrated outside Rome on the Alban Mount, by commanders who
had been refused a triumph in the city. (It is a notable feature of the list that triumphs of this last
type were included, although unauthorized and held outside Rome.) The formulae by which these
special categories are indicated are respectively ouans, naualem egit (these entries are the only ones
containing a main verb), and in monte Albano. 9 In a few cases some further information is included:
thus our attention is drawn to the first triumphs of each of the special types and the first triumph by
a proconsul, and to the fact that C. Cicerius, who triumphed in 172, was a former scribe.
The great majority of the surviving entries occupy two lines. Some 32 occupy three lines, usually
because the enemies listed require the additional space. Five entries, for triumphs against single
enemies won by commanders without cognomina (king Servius Tullius and three commanders in
the 40s BC), are accorded just one line (nos. 11, 12, 269, 273, 274). Two triumphs occupy four lines,
namely that of Cn. Cornelius Blasio in 196 (no. 168), where the extra space is taken up by the notice
of his appointment extra ordinem without a magistracy, and Pompey’s third triumph (no. 258), for
which an unparalleled number of enemies are listed. The entry for Marcellus’ triumph in 222 (no.
154), which closes the second pilaster, has an additional sentence reporting his winning spolia opima
by killing the enemy commander, and as a result uniquely runs over to a fifth line.
213 entries are preserved, in whole or in part, on the surviving fragments of the Capitoline trium-
phal list. For a good many most of the entry is lost, but in almost all cases the triumph referred to
can be securely identified with the help of literary sources and the Capitoline consular list.10 Other
sources also enable us to identify a substantial number of triumphs which will have been listed in
sections of the Capitoline record which are now lost.
Scanty fragments survive of two other inscribed triumphal lists, to which Degrassi gave the titles
Fasti Triumphales Urbisalvienses and Fasti Triumphales Barberiniani.11 The former, from Urbs Salvia
(modern Urbisaglia) in Picenum, was, like the Capitoline triumphal list, accompanied by a list of
consuls.12 Two marble fragments survive from this list, covering triumphs of 195-194 and 175-166
BC (nos. 169-172, 194-202), all of which are also extant on the Capitoline list (though some wording
is better preserved in this version). The five peperino fragments surviving from the Barberini list are
so called because, after their discovery during the Renaissance at an unknown location in Rome,
they were installed at the staircase of the Palazzo Barberini until their removal to the Vatican Mu-
seum in 1910. These fragments preserve the list’s entries for the triumphs of 43-21 (nos. 271-288,

8. The Capitoline consular and triumphal lists allowed one calendar date and the final letters of the commander’s
year less for the period of the kings than the so-called Var- name (read by Degrassi as “-mus”) and of the enemy’s
ronian chronology (in fact pioneered by Atticus in his liber name (“-us”). Degrassi restores an otherwise unknown
annalis composed in 47 BC) which dated the foundation suffect consul, which seems unlikely, not least because
to 753: see further Werner 1963, 192-209; Drummond suffects are not attested before 305 BC (Livy 9.44.15;
1978, 550-563; Burgess and Kulikowski 2013, 161-162. Oakley 2005a, 582-585). Earlier editors’ restoration of
9. On naval triumphs see Dart and Vervaet 2012. On Al- the dictator Mam. Aemilius Mamercinus, attested as tri-
ban Mount triumphs see Brennan 1996; Baudou 1997; umphing in that year against the Veientes and Fidenates
Rosenberger 2009; Lange, in this volume. Rohde 1942 by Livy 4.20.1 and Lyd. Mag. 1.38, seems more plausible
remains the fullest treatment of ovations. Ovations were (so Ogilvie 1965, 562).
sometimes also called ‘minor triumphs’ (Rohde 1942, 11. Degrassi 1947, 338-345; Phillips 1974, 269-270; Itgen-
1890-1891), and for convenience I have spoken of them shorst 2004, 446 n. 35; Beard 2007, 66; Bastien 2007, 54-
as triumphs in this paper. 58.
10. One exception is no. 39, for which only the right side 12. Fragments of the consular list: Paci 1981, 60-69; AE
of the entry is preserved, giving the year (437 BC) and 1982, 240-241.

290-297), for some of which the Capitoline entries are lost (nos. 285-291).13 The entries in both the
Urbisalvian and Barberini lists omit the years of each triumph and the commander’s filiation, while
the Barberini entries also omit the commander’s status and include at the end the words “trium-
phauit palmam dedit” [“... triumphed, dedicated the palm”].14 Both lists probably derive from the
same original as the Capitoline list.15
Numerous references to individual triumphs survive in a wide range of ancient historical works,
in literary works of other kinds, and in inscriptions other than the triumphal lists, for example elogia
relating to the triumphing commanders.16 Dionysius gives a nearly comprehensive listing for the
period down to 443 for which his history is extant.17 Livy gives only selective triumphal notices in
his first decade, but an almost complete listing in the extant later part of his work (Books 21-45) cov-
ering the years 218-167.18 Outside these years, only the inscribed lists give a comprehensive record,
including 62 triumphs unattested elsewhere. As a result, although we are able to supply many of the
entries missing from the inscribed lists from other sources, some gaps remain.
Table 1 provides data on the twelve lacunae between the surviving fragments of the Capitoline tri-
umphal list in which one or more triumphs will have been recorded. The first three columns indicate
the placing of these gaps in the reconstructed Capitoline list. The fourth column gives the number
of lines which will have been occupied by missing triumphs in each lacuna according to Degrassi’s
reconstruction. (The numbers specified do not include lines which can be assigned to partially sur-
viving triumphs.) Where Nedergaard has dissented, both their calculations are shown, distinguished
by ‘D’ and ‘N’. The fifth column gives the number of triumphs attested by other sources for the peri-
ods to which the lacunae relate, and the final column gives an estimate of the number of additional
triumphs, if any, likely to have appeared in the Capitoline list when intact. Given the variation in the
number of lines per triumph, only the likely range can be estimated for the triumphs missing in the
larger lacunae, not the precise number.

Table 1. Lacunae in the Capitoline triumphal list
Pilaster Last triumph before First triumph after Lines occupied by Triumphs attested in Estimated
lacuna (BC date/no.) lacuna (BC date/no.) missing triumphs other sources additional
1 Romulus II (no. 2) Ancus Marcius (no. 7) 9 4 (nos. 3-6)
1 494 (no.24) 486 (no. 27) 4 2 (nos. 25-26)
1 437 (no. 39) 367 (no. 52) 25 12 (nos. 40-51)
2 291 (no. 97) 282 (no. 104) 19 6 (nos. 98-103) 1-3
3 222 (no. 154) 197 (no. 166) 31 11 (nos. 155-165) 1-3
3 191 (no. 174) 189 (no. 176) 2 D, 3 N 1 (no. 175)
3 187 (no. 180) 178 (no. 190) 18 D, 21 N 9 (nos. 181-189)
3 155 (no. 206) 129 (no. 215) 33 D, 29 N 8 (nos. 207-214) 6-8 D, 4-6 N
4 104 (no. 232) 98 (no. 238) 10 5 (nos. 233-237)
4 81 (no. 244) 62 (no. 257) 29 12 (nos. 245-256) 1-2
4 54 (no. 259) 45 (no. 268) 15 D, 17 N 8 (nos. 260-267)
4 34 (no. 284) 28 (no. 292) 16 D, 14 N 7 (nos. 285-291)

13. For unknown reasons, the Barberini list omits Octavian’s 571 (see also the CD accompanying Itgenshorst 2005 for
Actium triumph (no. 289) and Balbus’ triumph (no. 298): triumphs from 340 to 19 BC). See below at n. 30 for a
see Beard 2007, 303-305. triumph omitted by Degrassi.
14. This formula may indicate that the original location of 17. The two triumphs attributed to Tarquinius Superbus
the Barberini list was the Capitoline temple where tri- (nos. 14-15) are the only ones in the Capitoline list not
umphing commanders made their dedication (so G. mentioned by Dionysius.
Henzen, in CIL 12, p. 78; Degrassi 1947, 345). 18. Fabius Maximus’ triumph in 209 over Tarentum is the
15. Cf. Burgess and Kulikowski 2013, 167. only triumph omitted in Livy’s later books (no. 159; see
16. Full references to the sources for individual triumphs below, n. 126). Livy’s notices of the triumphs celebrated
down to 19 BC, both those included in the extant in- in 175 (nos. 193-6) are lost in a lacuna.
scribed lists and others, are given by Degrassi 1947, 534-

85 triumphs are attested by other sources for the periods covered by the lacunae in the Capitoline
list and may have stood in the list. A few of these are problematic, and are discussed below.19 With
these exceptions, we can be confident that these attested triumphs will have appeared in the now lost
portions of the Capitoline list. These triumphs are sufficient to fill the majority of the list’s gaps, and
only for four of its lacunae is it necessary to postulate further triumphs of which no record happens
to survive.20
The lacuna between triumphs recorded for 291 and 282 BC, estimated by Degrassi as nineteen
lines, may be restored as containing either seven, eight, or nine triumphs.21 If the six triumphs at-
tested elsewhere all appeared in the Capitoline list, we would therefore have to postulate between
one and three further entries as completing this lacuna. Two commanders in this period for whom
no triumph is recorded but who are likely to have triumphed are Cn. Domitius Calvinus, consul in
283, for his destruction of the surviving Gallic Senones, and Q. Aemilius Papus, consul in 282, prob-
ably in command at the decisive victory over the combined Etruscans and Boii.22 However, two of
the attested triumphs for these years are questionable: Dionysius, our only source for L. Postumius
Megellus’ triumph in 291, tells us that he celebrated it without authorization, so duplicating infor-
mation given for Postumius’ triumph in 294 by Livy, whose version may be preferable, and we know
of Curius Dentatus’ ovation against the Lucani solely from a problematic notice in a late source.23
At the top of the third pilaster there is a lacuna, estimated by Degrassi as 31 lines, between tri-
umphs recorded for 222 and 197 BC. The ovation won in Spain by L. Cornelius Lentulus in 200
(no. 163) probably occupied four lines like that won by Cn. Cornelius Blasio in 196 (no. 168), since
Lentulus, like Blasio, held proconsular imperium extra ordinem, and the notice relating to him is
likely to have reported this with the same lengthy formula.24 The remaining 27 lines are likely to have
accommodated at the most five three-line triumphs, with the remainder occupying two lines each. It
follows that the total number of triumphs for this period was probably between twelve and fourteen,
that is, at least one and no more than three in addition to the eleven attested by other sources.25 All
these additional triumphs are likely to have been won in 221-220, when the consuls campaigned
successfully against the Histri and up to the Alps, since Plutarch (Marc. 8.1) tells us that Marcellus
in 222 triumphed without his colleague, both consuls are attested as triumphing in 219, and it is
unlikely that any unattested triumphs occurred in the better documented period from 218.26
The large lacuna near the bottom of the third pilaster, between triumphs recorded for 155 and 129
BC, is by far the most problematic, since only eight triumphs are attested in other sources for that
period. If Degrassi is correct in calculating the gap at 33 lines, the maximum number of triumphs
recorded in the lacuna will have been sixteen (allowing for just one three-line entry), and the number

19. Another problematic case is A. Cornelius Cossus (no. 41; 22. Domitius: App. Samn. 6.4, Celt. 11.4; accepted as prob-
Degrassi 1947, 538). Augustus (reported by Livy 4.20.5- ably triumphing by Pais 1920, 72, and Degrassi 1947,
11) held that Cossus dedicated his spolia opima as con- 545 (Degrassi includes him in his listing, although no tri-
sul in 428, and Plutarch (Rom. 16.7) supposed that, like umph is attested). Aemilius: Dion. Hal. 19.13.2; Frontin.
Marcellus in 222, he did so in the course of a chariot Str. 1.2.7; cf. Polyb. 2.20.4-5; noted as likely to have tri-
triumph, but whether this view was followed by the com- umphed by Schön 1893, 69, and Pais 1920, 336-7.
pilers of the Capitoline triumphal list is quite uncertain. 23. Postumius: Dion. Hal. 17-18.5.3; Livy 10.37.6-12; Oakley
Although the list’s entry for Marcellus’ triumph in 222 2005b, 373. Curius: vir. ill. 33.3; Brennan 1994; below, at
gives ample space to his spolia opima, there is no men- n. 104.
tion of Romulus’ spolia opima in its opening entry for his 24. So rightly Schön 1893, 34; Degrassi 1947, 551. For the
first triumph (on this problem see Spannagel 1999, 251- formula see Sumner 1965, with an improved restoration.
252; Bastien 2007, 66-74). In general on the problems 25. 12 triumphs: 1 x 4 lines, 5 x 3 lines, 6 x 2 lines. 13 tri-
relating to the spolia opima see Rich 1996; Flower 2000. umphs: 1 x 4 lines, 3 x 3 lines, 9 x 2 lines. 14 triumphs:
20. Degrassi 1947, 534-571, is the fundamental discussion 1 x 4 lines, 1 x 3 lines, 12 x 2 lines. 11 triumphs would
of the lacunae and how they should be filled. See also require seven 3-line and only three 2-line entries, which
Schön 1893; Pais 1920, especially 329-353; Bastien 2007, is not plausible.
74-84. 26. Campaigning in 221-220: Zonar. 8.20.10; Eutrop. 3.7.1;
21. 7 triumphs: 5 x 3 lines, 2 x 2 lines. 8 triumphs: 3 x 3 lines, Oros. 4.13.16; Livy Per. 20. Schön 1893, 70, and Pais
5 x 2 lines. 9 triumphs: 1 x 3 lines, 8 x 2 lines. A relatively 1920, 338-9, note that these campaigns are likely to have
high proportion of three-line entries is not unlikely here, yielded triumphs. Appian (Hisp. 38.156) is certainly
since there is a cluster of such entries in the extant part wrong to claim that Scipio triumphed on return from
of the list for the early third century. Spain in 206: see below, n. 131.

can hardly have been lower than fourteen (implying five three-line entries). If Nedergaard’s calcu-
lation of 29 lines is to be preferred, the number of triumphs is correspondingly reduced to between
twelve and fourteen. Thus the additional triumphs for this period, over and above those attested,
may be between six and eight (Degrassi) or between four and six (Nedergaard). A further problem is
that Florus’ report (2.7.8) that M. Perperna won an ovation (no. 214) for finishing the First Sicilian
Slave war is likely to be erroneous: our other sources do not mention Perperna in connection with
this war and portray it as ended by P. Rupilius as consul in 132. It was thus probably Rupilius who
held the ovation, and I have accordingly attributed it to him in my tables.27 Pais identified a further
eight commanders likely to have triumphed in the period, four consular commanders in Spain, two
other consulars, and two praetorians, both commanding in Macedonia.28
The lacuna between triumphs recorded for 81 and 62 BC is estimated by Degrassi at 29 lines.
Twelve triumphs are attested in other sources for this period, but it is likely that at least one and
perhaps two others figured on the list.29
Degrassi listed seven triumphs as attested in other sources for the period covered by the lacuna
between triumphs recorded for 54 and 45 BC. Subsequent scholarship has drawn attention to an
eighth triumph (no. 260), won, in 54 or 53, by Q. Caecilius Metellus Pius Scipio, following his prae-
torship and from an unknown province, and attested by Varro (Rust. 3.2.16).30 The attested triumphs
can be comfortably accommodated in the seventeen lines estimated for the lacuna by Nedergaard,
but, if Degrassi’s estimate of fifteen lines is correct, one entry must have occupied a single line.
The triumphs listed in Table 6 in the Appendix comprise the 213 for which entries are preserved
in the surviving parts of the Capitoline list, plus the 85 attested by other sources for its lacunae,
together totalling 298. To these must be added our estimates of the additional, unattested triumphs
which will have stood in the four lacunae which cannot be filled just by attested triumphs. These
total between nine and sixteen on Degrassi’s calculations of the line lengths, or between seven and
fourteen on Nedergaard’s revision. Thus the total number of triumphs which will have been record-
ed on the intact Capitoline list may be estimated in the range 307-314 on Degrassi’s calculations, or
305-312 on Nedergaard’s.
To the Christian historian Orosius (7.9.8) the joint triumph of Vespasian and Titus over the Jews
in AD 71 presented the spectacle of a father and a son in the same chariot bringing back a most
glorious victory over “those who had offended against (God) the Father and (Christ) the Son”, such
as had not been seen in any of the 320 triumphs which had preceded it since the foundation of the
City. Eight celebrations – four full triumphs, and four ovations – had been held since the triumph of
Balbus in 19 BC with which the Capitoline list closed.31 Thus, although Orosius’ figure is likely to be

27. Rupilius holding the ovation: Pais 1920, 194-195; Mün- Ligurians; Ser. Fulvius Flaccus (cos. 135), in Illyricum.
zer 1937, 894-895. Rupilius capturing Enna and finish- Praetorians (see Brennan 2000, 226-229): Licinius Ner-
ing the war: Diod. 34-35.2.20-23; Livy, Per. 59; Val. Max. va, hailed as imperator for a victory by his quaestor
6.9.8, 9.12.ext.1; Oros. 5.9.7. Some scholars defend Florus (Varro, Rust. 2.4.1-2); M. Cosconius, against the Scordi-
by supposing that Perperna held a praetorian command sci (Livy, Per. 56).
in Sicily in association with the consuls L. Calpurnius 29. One additional triumph implies three 3-line triumphs
Piso in 133 and Rupilius in 132: so Broughton 1951, 498- in the lacuna, two additional triumphs imply one 3-line
499; Bradley 1989, 62; Brennan 1993, 167-177, and 2000, triumph. For the twelve attested triumphs to fill the lacu-
151, 622. However, the activities ascribed to Perperna by na, five would have to occupy three lines, a much higher
Florus should not be interpreted as complementary to ratio than in the extant later parts of the list.
those reported by other sources for Rupilius: Florus does 30. Badian 1970, 4-6; Linderski 1985, 248-254; Broughton
not mention Rupilius and portrays Perperna as ending 1986, 42; Konrad 1996, 139-140. The triumph is omitted
the war. Degrassi 1947, 558, implausibly supposed that from the listings of Itgenshorst 2005, 270; Bastien 2007,
both Perperna and Rupilius may have held ovations for 413.
this war. 31. Ovation of Tiberius in 9 BC and triumphs in 7 BC
28. Pais 1920, 342-351; Degrassi 1947, 558-559; Bastien and AD 12; triumph of Germanicus in AD 17; ovation
2007, 81-82; see Broughton 1951, 449-489, for sourc- of Drusus in 20; ovation of Gaius in 40; triumph of
es. Consulars in Spain: L. Licinius Lucullus (cos. 151, Claudius and ovation of A. Plautius in 47. Drusus the
Citerior), Q. Fabius Maximus Aemilianus (cos. 145, Elder, often credited with an ovation in 11 BC, did not
Ulterior), Q. Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus (cos. 143, in fact live to hold a celebration (Rich 1999, 549). The
Citerior), Q. Servilius Caepio (cos. 140, Ulterior). Other ovation proposed for Nero in AD 54 (Tac. Ann. 13.8.1)
consulars: Q. Opimius (cos. 154), against transalpine was evidently not held.

a rounded total, it was clearly based on the same reckoning as the Capitoline record, and supports
our estimate of the total number of triumphs in that listing.
As this section has shown, the so-called Capitoline list of triumphs, as set up on the Arch of Au-
gustus in the Forum Romanum, can be reconstructed with near completeness, with the single ex-
ception of the lacuna between the triumphs recorded for 155 and 129 BC, where a greater degree of
uncertainty subsists. The list thus constitutes a rich resource for analysis. A further question must,
however, first be addressed, namely the historical reliability of the record.

2. The reliability of the list of triumphs

The list of triumphs as it was inscribed on the Arch of Augustus is a compilation by Augustan schol-
ars, but the value of its information varies greatly across its length. The notices of relatively recent
triumphs must derive ultimately from an archival source and may be taken as historically accurate.
At least the section dealing with the kings must be simple invention, effected at some stage in the
Romans’ imaginative expansion of their past. However, for the early centuries of the Republic, schol-
ars disagree as to how much of what we are told may be sound and how much invented, for the
triumphal list, as for the rest of the historical tradition.32
The chief archival source from which the triumphal list derives may, as has often been supposed,
have been the so-called Annales Maximi, the annual record of events posted by the Pontifex Maximus
on a whitened board outside his residence and then retained in a more permanent form. How far
back information from this source may have been available to later Roman enquirers is disputed:
some suppose that the record may have been compiled and preserved from the fifth century, others
(unconvincingly, in my view) that it went back no further than the third. In any case, it is not certain
that this was the archive drawn on for the triumphal list, and at least the entries relating to triumphs
held after the Pontifex Maximus’ record was discontinued by P. Mucius Scaevola (Pontifex Maximus
from 130 to c. 115 BC) must derive from a different archival source.33
Triumphs also figured prominently in aristocratic family traditions, as preserved in, for example,
funeral speeches and the labels attached to imagines. Such traditions were notorious for exaggerations
and inventions, scathingly remarked on in well-known passages of Cicero (Brut. 62, with specific ref-
erence to ‘false triumphs’) and Livy (8.40.4). Modern sceptics hold that many of the triumphs in the list
may have been inventions from such sources, but it is not easy to demonstrate this in individual cases.
Roman historians, as we have seen, included frequent references to triumphs, and this will have
been established practice from an early stage in Roman historiography, as is shown by a verbatim
fragment of the historian Sempronius Asellio, writing in the late second or early first century: crit-
icizing predecessors whose works he calls annales, Asellio describes it as characteristic of them
to write “under whom as consul a war was undertaken and under whom it was ended and who en-
tered in triumph from it” [FRHist 20 F2, ap. Gell. 5.18.9: “bellum initum quo consule et quo confec-
tum sit et quis triumphans introierit ex eo”]. Overall, there is a high measure of agreement between
the inscribed list and the triumph notices in extant historical accounts, but for the early period this
is no guarantee of authenticity: rather, it shows that the compilers of the list drew on the work of
the historians. However, when a triumph appears only in the inscribed list, this does not in itself
(as some scholars have been inclined to suppose) make its authenticity doubtful, since most extant
historical accounts, even Livy’s in the first decade, include notices of triumphs (like other routinely
occurring items) only selectively.

32. For sceptical views of the list’s reliability down to the 1997, 30-33, 56-57, 2005b, 485-489. Distortion in even
First Punic War see Pais 1920, i-xvii; Beloch 1926, 86- the more recent section of the list is suspected by Beard
95; Poucet 1968, 1971; Ridley 1983; Mora 1999, 166- 2007, 80, and Clark 2014, 148-149.
183; Beard 2007, 72-80; Bastien 2007, 85-118. For more 33. On the controversies relating to the Annales Maximi see
positive assessments see Cornell 1989, 289-290; Oakley Rich 2013a and forthcoming.

The Roman historical tradition, as preserved for us chiefly by Livy and Dionysius, gives a de-
tailed, and largely consistent, annual record of events, including frequent notices of warfare, from
the foundation of the Republic with its annual magistrates (traditionally dated to 509). With a few
exceptions, the information in the Capitoline triumphal list is in agreement with Livy and Dionysius
for the period from the foundation of the Republic down to the long lacuna for the years 437-367.34
However, although a good deal of authentic tradition will certainly have survived, much of what our
sources tell us about the Republic’s wars down to the early fourth century cannot be historical. The
detailed campaign narratives are mostly stereotyped literary confections, and in my view successive
historians’ expansion of the past is likely to have extended also to the invention or duplication of
wars and campaigns to fill out the annual record.35 The triumphal notices themselves are likely to
have been included in this process. Thus, although some of the triumphs reported for the early Re-
public are likely to be authentic, many are probably fabrications, like those reported for the kings
from Romulus on. One of Livy’s incidental comments on his sources brings out the use of relatively
late historians’ versions by the compilers of the triumphal list. The Capitoline list, Livy (3.24.8) and
Dionysius (10.21.8) all agree that both consuls of 459 triumphed. One of them, L. Cornelius Malu-
ginensis Uritinus (no. 34), is stated in the Capitoline entry to have triumphed “de Volsceis [A]ntiat-
ib(us)”. This implies the version in which Antium rebelled and was captured in that year, which is
narrated by Dionysius (10.20.4, 21.5-7), but which Livy (3.23.7) hesitates to affirm because, although
he found it in several authors (“apud plerosque auctores”), nothing was said about it by older writers
(“apud uetustiores scriptores”).
From the fourth century and particularly for the Second and Third Samnite Wars (327-290) there
is a discernible change in the character of our information. For this period, closer to the beginning
of Roman historical writing at the end of the third century, stronger traditions will have been availa-
ble, and Livy’s narrative now becomes fuller down to 293, after which his account is lost to us. How-
ever, much fabrication and distortion persists, and there is also a good deal of source conflict over
the activities of individual commanders, reflected both in the discrepancies between our sources and
in Livy’s own notices of variants. Some of these conflicts affect the triumphal record.36 Sometimes
the compilers of the Capitoline list appear to have opted for the better version: thus both for 322 and
for 305 (nos. 75-76, 85), the list’s entries agree with the variant version noted by Livy rather than with
the account he used for his main narrative, and in each case this appears the more plausible.37 Else-
where matters are more complex. Thus the Capitoline list reports L. Papirius Cursor as triumphing
over the Samnites as consul in 319 (no. 77), but Livy (9.15.9-11, 16.11) shows that there were vari-
ant versions of this triumph and of the magistrates for 320-319, and the historicity of the reported
Roman successes in the immediate aftermath of the Caudine Forks disaster is very questionable.38
For 294 Livy (10.32-37) reports warfare in Samnium and Etruria and a single triumph, but notes
differing versions as to where the consuls operated and which of them triumphed, appending to his
main narrative variants ascribed to Claudius Quadrigarius and the earliest Roman historian, Fabius
Pictor. The version followed in the Capitoline list, according to which both consuls triumphed from
both Samnium and Etruria (nos. 93-94), may have been compatible with Fabius’ account, but may
just be the result of an attempt by the list’s compilers to combine what they found in the historians.39
Other questionable entries in the list for these years include the triumphs recorded for 312 and 311

34. Livy (2.16.6) and Dionysius (5.43.2) report both the con- 36. The discrepancies between Livy (and other sources) and
suls of 504 as triumphing, but the Capitoline list reports the triumphal fasti for this period are conveniently tabu-
a triumph only for P. Valerius Publicola (no. 19). For the lated by Oakley 2005b, 487-489.
years 503-502 (nos. 20-22) the Capitoline entries are in 37. Livy’s main narrative gives a triumph in 322 to a dictator
agreement with Dionysius (5.47.2, 49.2), but Livy gives rather than the consuls (8.38-40), and in 305 to the ordi-
a radically different account, with campaigning against nary consuls, not a suffect (9.44). For the superiority of
the Aurunci, not the Sabines (2.16.7-17.7). Under 495 the alternative versions see Oakley 1999, 757-760; 2005a,
Dionysius (6.30.2-3) reports an otherwise unattested 575-578.
triumph for the consul P. Servilius Priscus. 38. See Oakley 2005a, 34-38, 167-169, with further bibliography.
35. See Rich 2007. More credence is given to the outline re- 39. So Beloch 1926, 444; Harris 1971, 75-76. Cf. Oakley
cord by Cornell 1989, and 1995, 293-326. 2005b, 348-349.

(nos. 79-81), not mentioned by Livy, and the claim that the enemies triumphed over in 299 (no. 90)
included the Samnites, although other sources date the renewal of war against them to the following
year.40 However, as the detailed analysis in Oakley’s superb Livy commentary has shown, there is no
strong reason to disbelieve most of the triumphs reported by the Capitoline list for the Samnite War
Following the lacuna in the years 291-282, the Capitoline list resumes with entries for the period
of the Pyrrhic War and the completion of the conquest of Italy which there is mostly no reason to
question. Only eight of the 21 triumphs it records for 282-266 are attested by other sources, but, in
view of the thinness of our sources for these years, this is no cause for concern. Some doubt does,
however, subsist over the entries for the year 266, according to which both consuls triumphed twice,
over the Umbrian Sassinates and four months later over the Sallentini of SE Italy (nos. 121-124). Al-
though, as Rosenstein has argued, this is not impossible, Beloch’s suggestion remains attractive that
duplication has occurred, and each consul in fact won a single triumph from individual campaigns
in these widely separated regions.41
From 264 and the start of Rome’s overseas wars, the triumphal list, in so far as it can be re-
constructed, can be accepted as both accurate and comprehensive. No valid grounds have been
advanced for questioning the authenticity of any triumph listed in the extant inscribed lists for this
period. Two triumphs not included in the Capitoline list are reported by some sources, but in each
case they must be in error: these may be taken as instances of the false triumphs of family tradition,
and it is reassuring that the inscribed list was not contaminated by them.42 The first of these is the
triumph over the Carthaginians and king Hiero of Syracuse attributed by Eutropius, Silius Italicus
and (by implication) Suetonius to Ap. Claudius Caudex, who as consul in 264 opened the First Punic
War: the triumph may well have been mentioned by Livy (Eutropius’ usual source in this period),
but, since there is no reference to it either in the inscribed list or in Polybius, Diodorus or Zonaras,
our main sources for Claudius’ campaign, we can be sure that it was not held.43 The second case
relates to L. Aemilius Paullus. Paullus triumphed twice, as proconsul after each of his consulships
(nos. 185, 199): his first triumph, in 181 over Ligurians, falls at a point for which no inscribed list
survives, but his triumph in 167 over Macedonia and its king Perseus is recorded as his second in ex-
tant fragments of both the Capitoline and Urbisalvian lists. However, an alternative tradition alleged
that he triumphed three times: the claim appears in an inscription which accompanied a statue of
Paullus set up by his descendant Q. Fabius Maximus as aedile in 57 in his restoration of a family
monument, the Fornix Fabianus, and on a coin issued by another claimed descendant in 62, and is
also asserted by Velleius (1.9.3).44 During his command in Further Spain in 191-189 in and after his
praetorship, Paullus had won a victory for which he had been hailed as imperator by his army and
decreed a supplicatio by the senate.45 This had not been followed by a triumph on his return, but his
family sometimes came to disregard the omission.46

40. See Oakley 2005a, 343, 404-405; 2005b, 153. such triumphs were recorded both in the Capitoline fasti
41. Beloch 1926, 89; Rosenstein 2004, 205-206 n. 32. and the historical tradition.
42. Another false triumph which the Capitoline list (not 44. The inscription: Degrassi 1937, no. 71b. For the Fornix
extant at that point) will certainly have omitted is that Fabianus see LTUR 2.264-266 (L. Chioffi). The coin: RRC
claimed for Scipio in 206 by Appian (see nn. 26, 131). 415, denarius of L. Aemilius Lepidus Paullus, with reverse
There is no likelihood that further Alban Mount tri- showing Paullus with his captives, Perseus and his sons,
umphs and ovations occurred without leaving any re- and a trophy surmounted by TER (‘thrice’), surely claiming
cord in our sources, as argued by Pais 1920, xviii-xxv, three triumphs for him rather than (as e.g. Morgan 1973,
381-388; Baudou 1997, 299. Livy’s references to Alban 228-229) merely alluding to his three imperatorial saluta-
triumphs having been held by many commanders are tions. The moneyer perhaps intended a comparison with
empty exaggeration (33.23.3; 45.38.4; cf. 42.21.7). Pompey, who was about to hold his third triumph, but had
43. Eutrop. 1.18.3, 19.3; Sil. 6.660-662; Suet. Tib. 1.2 (six tri- failed to take Mithridates alive. For the celebration of their
umphs said to have been won by Claudii, although only past glories by the Aemilii in the age of Pompey and Caesar
five are otherwise attested). Likely inclusion by Livy: see Wiseman 1993, esp. 186-187 (= 1998, 116-117).
Schermann 1905, 24; Eckstein 1980, 181-183. Other 45. Imperator: ILLRP 514. Supplicatio: Livy 37.58.5.
sources for Claudius’ command: Broughton 1951, 203. 46. There is no reference to a triumph from Spain for Paul-
It is unlikely that, as has sometimes been suggested lus in the references to his command there by Livy or
(Pais 1921; Hoyos 1998, 104; Bleckmann 2002, 83-84), Plutarch (Aem. 4), or in the elogium accompanying his
Claudius held an unauthorized triumph, since other statue in the Forum Augustum (Degrassi 1937, no. 81).

The conclusions of this section may be summed up as follows. The record of triumphs, as it sur-
vives in the inscribed lists or can be reconstructed for their lacunae, can command little confidence
down to the early fourth century. For the later fourth and still more for the early third century, the
record appears largely accurate, although a number of triumphs remain problematic. Thereafter the
accuracy of the record can be taken as assured.

3. Frequency patterns in the list of triumphs

This section presents tables analysing frequency patterns for successive periods of Roman republi-
can history in the list of triumphs as reconstructed by the means explained in Section 1 (that is, from
what survives of the inscribed lists supplemented, for their lacunae, by the triumphs attested by oth-
er sources) and as reproduced in Table 6 in the Appendix. In what follows the term ‘listed triumphs’
is used to refer to the triumphs comprising this reconstructed record.
The terminal points of the selected periods are mainly key dates in the development of Roman
external warfare and expansion: the Gallic Sack (in fact in 387, but dated to 390 on the Varronian
chronology); the outbreak of the First Samnite War (343); the outbreak and end of the First Punic
War (264, 241); the outbreaks of the Second Punic and Second Macedonian Wars (218, 200). In-
ternal conflicts supply suitable turning points in the early and late Republic: the overthrow of the
Decemvirate (449), and the outbreaks of the Social War and the war between Pompey and Caesar
(91, 49). The year 300 makes a convenient mid-point between the Second and Third Samnite Wars.
The year 166 marks the end of the intensive fighting in Northern Italy and the Greek East which had
been typical of the early second century. The year 130 is used as a cut-off point simply as the end
of the lacuna in the Capitoline list with the most significant shortfall of entries supplied from other
As shown above, the list of triumphs must be regarded as of low historical reliability for the first
three periods (509-344), of greater reliability for the next two (343-265), and full reliability for the
remainder, in so far as it can be confidently reconstructed.
In the calculations of annual rates two adjustments have been made to the year totals implied by
the chronology of the Capitoline consular and triumphal lists. The first concerns the five-year ‘an-
archy’ (corresponding to 375-371 BC) assumed in these lists, as also by Livy and by the ‘Varronian’
chronology which remains conventional in modern scholarly usage. It was supposed that during
these years the Licinio-Sextian agitation resulted in no curule magistrates being elected, but this is
certainly unhistorical, and in fact there can at the most have been a single year without magistrates,
as in the version of Diodorus (15.61.1), which probably represents the oldest tradition.48 I have ac-
cordingly calculated the period 389-344 as 42 years. The second adjustment relates to the so-called
‘dictator years’. The Capitoline consular and triumphal lists follow the ‘Varronian’ chronology in
recording four years (corresponding to 333, 325, 309 and 301 BC) in which dictators are deemed to
have served as the chief magistrates in place of consuls. Livy and other historians show no knowl-
edge of these years, which must certainly have been unhistorical, and in so far as the events ascribed
to them are authentic they must have occurred under the preceding consular year.49 I have accord-
ingly calculated the period 343-301 as 39 years.
Table 2 analyses the overall numbers and frequency of triumphs across the selected periods.
Column 2 gives the number of listed triumphs in each period. Column 3 gives the number of ad-
ditional triumphs estimated for the four periods where other sources’ evidence is not sufficient to
complete the lacunae in the inscribed lists, as discussed in Section 1. For the period 165-30 the esti-

47. For a stimulating recent discussion of historical periodi- 48. See further Oakley 1997, 105, 647-650.
zation for the Roman Republic see Flower 2010, with the 49. See Drummond 1978; Oakley 1997, 104-105.
comments of North 2011 and Rich 2012a.

Table 2. Triumphs 509-19 BC
Listed triumphs Estimated additional Listed triumphs per Estimated triumphs
triumphs year per year
509-449 22 0.36
448-390 11 0.19
389-344 15 0.36
343-301 26 0.67
300-265 35 1-3 0.97 1.00-1.06
264-241 19 0.79
240-219 13 1-3 0.59 0.64-0.73
218-201 6 0.39
200-166 41 1.17
165-130 11 6-8 0.31 0.47-0.53
129-91 26 0.67
90-50 21 1-2 0.51 0.54-0.56
49-19 37 1.19

Total 509-19 283 9-16 0.59 0.60-0.62
Total 343-19 235 9-16 0.73 0.76-0.78
Total 343-50 198 9-16 0.68 0.71-0.74

mate is based on Degrassi’s calculation of the number of missing lines; if Nedergaard’s calculation is
correct, the estimate should be reduced to 4-6. Column 4 gives the rate of listed triumphs per year,
as implied by the totals in Column 2. Column 5 gives, for the four periods affected, the annual rate
implied by the totals in Column 2 plus the estimated additional triumphs given in Column 3: the
difference from Column 4 is marginal except for the period 165-130.
The table reveals remarkable variation in the frequency of recorded triumphs. Down to the mid
fourth century, triumphs are recorded as occurring on average only about once every three years,
and in the later fifth century only around once every five years. From the mid fourth century on the
recorded rate becomes significantly higher, and is generally around two triumphs every three years
or a little below, except during the Second Punic War (218-201), when the recorded rate is bare-
ly higher than for the early Republic. For three periods the triumphal rate becomes substantially
higher still, to an average of around or over one triumph per year, namely for the early third century,
the early second century, and the final thirty years before Balbus’ triumph in 19.
The following three tables are necessarily restricted to the listed triumphs, since the estimated
additional triumphs cannot be identified. It should be noted that the period 165-130 is therefore
significantly under-represented in these tables.
Table 3 provides a breakdown of the listed triumphs by type of triumph. Triumphs which do not
fall into any of the three special categories are designated as ‘standard’, in default of any attested
ancient term.50 As the table shows, both naval and Alban Mount triumphs occurred only between
the mid third and early second centuries: the first naval triumph occurred in 260, the last in 167; the
first Alban Mount triumph in 231, the last in 172. Ovations are attested from the earliest to the latest
periods, but they are recorded as frequent only in the early Republic, the early second century, and
in the final period. Two third-century ovations are problematic: Curius Dentatus’ ovation over the
Lucani (no. 102) is is attested only by one unreliable source and its date is also uncertain, and it is
questionable how C. Claudius Nero’s celebration in 207 (no. 161) should be categorized (see below,
Sections 6, 9).

50. Augustus uses the term curulis to distinguish his triple His language is echoed by Suetonius (Aug. 22), but the
triumph from his two ovations (RGDA 4.1: “[bis] ouans usage is not found elsewhere. In any case, ‘curule’ in this
triumphaui et tri[s egi] curulis triumphos” [“I triumphed sense would not exclude naval or Alban Mount triumphs,
twice in ovation and three times drove chariot triumphs”]. at which the commander rode in a chariot.

Table 3. Listed triumphs by type 509-19 BC
Standard Ovation Naval Alban Mount Standard per year
509-449 18 4 0.30
448-390 8 3 0.14
389-344 14 1 0.33
343-301 26 0.67
300-265 34 1 (?) 0.94
264-241 12 7 0.50
240-219 11 1 1 0.50
218-201 3 2 (?) 1 0.17
200-166 29 7 3 2 0.83
165-130 10 1 0.28
129-91 25 1 0.64
90-50 20 1 0.49
49-19 33 4 1.06
Total 509-19 243 25 0.50
Total 343-19 203 17 11 4 0.63

The data in this table thus yield a refinement in respect of the peak periods for triumphs overall
shown on the previous table: in the first peak period, the early third century, almost all the triumphs
recorded are of the standard type, but naval and Alban Mount triumphs and especially ovations
make a substantial contribution to the high overall total of celebrations for the early second century.
Table 4 analyses the listed triumphs by the commander’s status at the time of his triumph down
to 50 BC. I have omitted the period 49-19 from this table because of the rupture of the link between
magistracy and triumph which occurred first through Pompey’s law of 52, which imposed a five-year
interval between tenure of consuls’ and praetors’ tenure of their magistracy and of a province, and
then from 49 through the irregularities of the civil war period.
Columns 2, 4 and 6 show the numbers of triumphs held by commanders during their term of
office as respectively consuls, praetors and dictators. A few of these commanders only took up the
office in question after their original assignment to the command in which they won their triumph:
this was the case for A. Atilius Caiatinus, who triumphed as praetor in 257, following his consulship
in 258 (no. 131),51 for Marius, triumphing over Jugurtha on the first day of his consulship in 104
(no. 232), and for Sulla, triumphing over Mithridates while holding the dictatorship to which he was
appointed following his return and victory in the ensuing civil war (no. 243).52 The rest, however, left
Rome for the war zone, conducted their campaign, returned to Rome, and celebrated their triumph
all within the term of the original magistracy during which they had been assigned to the command.
Columns 3 and 5 show the numbers of triumphs held by promagistrates whose command had
been prorogued following respectively the consulship or praetorship.53 The status of prorogued mag-
istrates is given in the Capitoline and Urbisalvian lists as pro co(n)s(ule) or pro pr(aetore). However,
the commanders designated as triumphing pro co(n)s(ule) include not only those prorogued from
their consulship, but also praetors prorogued with consular imperium. Accordingly, I have in the
table designated prorogued consuls as ‘ex-consuls’ and prorogued praetors as ‘ex-praetors’.54
Column 7 relates to those few commanders who triumphed in these years following commands to
which they had been appointed as private citizens rather than in a magistracy, namely L. Cornelius
Lentulus and Cn. Cornelius Blasio who won ovations from Spain in respectively 200 and 196 (nos.
163, 168) and Pompey in all his three triumphs (nos. 246, 253, 258).

51. See below, n. 109. tor year 309. If the triumph is historical, Fabius will have
52. So also subsequently nos. 263, 268, 272, 274, 277, 288. held it as consul, as stated by Livy 9.40.20 (Oakley 2005a,
53. The second triumph of Q. Fabius Maximus Rullianus 421, 453).
(no. 83) has been counted as held by him as consul. The 54. Consular and praetorian proconsuls are differentiated in
entry in the Capitoline list shows him as pro co(n)s(ule) the listing in Table 6 in the Appendix. On praetorian pro-
only because it dates the triumph to the spurious dicta- consuls see now Vervaet 2012; Hurlet 2012.

Table 4. Listed triumphs by commander’s status 509-50 BC
Consuls Ex-consuls Praetors Ex-praetors Dictators Privati Consular per Praetorian
year per year
509-449 19 3 0.31
448-390 7 4 0.12
389-344 8 7 0.19
343-301 21 1 4 0.56
300-265 32 2 1 (?) 0.94 0.03
264-241 11 6 1 1 0.71 0.08
240-219 12 1 0.59
218-201 3 3 0.33
200-166 10 11 1 17 2 0.60 0.51
165-130 3 5 3 0.22 0.08
129-91 5 18 3 0.59 0.08
90-50 1 9 7 1 3 0.24 0.17
Total 509-50 132 56 3 31 19 5 0.42 0.08
Total 343-50 98 56 3 31 5 5 0.53 0.12

Column 8 gives the annual averages for triumphs celebrated by those commanding either in their
consulship or by prorogation following their consulship (as totalled in Columns 2 and 3). Column 9
gives the annual averages for triumphs celebrated by those commanding either in their praetorship
or by prorogation following their praetorship (as totalled in Columns 4 and 5).
Well known developments in the character of the Roman command system are naturally reflected
in the table. In the early Republic triumphs were celebrated during their term of office by consuls or
dictators. However, the military dictatorship fell out of use after the fourth century, and so the two
dictators who triumphed in 302 (nos. 88-89) were the last to do so until Sulla and Caesar. Proroga-
tion was first resorted to in the Samnite Wars and became increasingly important from the Punic
Wars on, until in the last years of the Republic military command came to be exercised exclusively
by promagistrates.
One striking feature of the table is the variation in the frequency of praetorian triumphs. Before
the second century the only commanders to triumph for successes won in or following their prae-
torship were M.’ Curius Dentatus in 283 (no. 102, if this dating is correct: below at n. 104), and
Q. Valerius Falto in 241 (no. 141). In the early second century, triumphs by prorogued praetors were
frequent, but after 167 they became relative rarities. Thus, as with the previous table, the early sec-
ond century emerges as an exceptional period, and it is now clear that its high overall frequency of
triumphs is largely due to prorogued praetors. The ovations and naval triumphs which were also a
marked feature of this period were all won by former praetors.
Table 5 presents an analysis of the regions from which the listed triumphs were won from the be-
ginning of Roman overseas warfare in 264.55 The table illustrates the gradual widening of the range
of Roman military commitments. Once again the early second century shows a highly distinctive
pattern: concentrated warfare then produced numerous triumphs in the three regions of northern
Italy, Spain and the East, whereas in later periods warfare was more widely spread and the yield of
triumphs from individual regions was generally lower.
In the remainder of this paper the implications of the trends illustrated in these tables will be
explored in more detail by examining the evolution of Roman triumphal practice across succes-
sive periods. One more topic must, however, first be briefly discussed, namely the authorization of

55. The Baliares, triumphed over in 121 (no. 220), are 260), or the ovations held without preceding warfare by
counted with Spain. The table does not include Q. Me- Caesar, Octavian and Antony (nos. 270, 275, 276).
tellus Scipio’s triumph, from an unknown province (no.

Table 5. Regions yielding listed triumphs, 264-19 BC
Italy Sicily Sardinia Africa Illyricum Spain Macedonia other Transalpine
Corsica eastern Gaul
264-241 3 12 2 2
240-219 6 4 3
218-201 3 2 1
200-166 14 2 1 15 3 6
165-130 3 1 1 1 3 1 1
129-91 4 1 2 2 2 5 4 2 4
90-50 2 1? 1 4.5 3 7 1.5
49-19 1 1 6 2 11 3 6 4
total 36 17 11 13 9 38.5 14 22 9.5

4. The authorization of triumphs

In the developed Republic the right to authorize triumphs rested with the senate. Formally, a com-
mander’s request to the senate was for funding for the triumph.56 However, only on a very few occa-
sions did commanders hold triumphs in Rome despite having been refused senatorial approval. In 223
C. Flaminius and P. Furius Philus (nos. 152-153) triumphed by vote of the popular assembly, having
been refused by the senate.57 Similar reports for the fifth century are unlikely to be historical, but Livy
may be right that the first plebeian dictator, C. Marcius Rutulus (no. 60), triumphed in 356 ‘without
the authority of the fathers by order of the people’.58 Two consuls, L. Postumius Megellus in 294 or 291
and Ap. Claudius Pulcher in 143, triumphed without authorization from either senate or people and
despite tribunes’ attempt to obstruct them.59 Four commanders between 231 and 172 evaded senatori-
al refusals by holding triumphs outside Rome, on the Alban Mount (nos. 149, 157, 166, 198). However,
with these exceptions, respect for senatorial authority over triumphs was complete from at least the
third century. Livy and Dionysius portray it as exercising the same control in the early Republic, but
it is possible that the chief magistrates then had more freedom, in this as in other respects, and that
senatorial authority over the triumph was a development of the later fourth century.60
To enable promagistrates to triumph, a law had to be passed by the popular assembly granting
them imperium for the day of their entry into the city, since their imperium, by virtue of which they
commanded their lictors and troops, would otherwise lapse when they crossed the pomerium. This
was normally passed as a matter of routine, and so is seldom mentioned by our sources. However,
the law was famously carried in 167 for Paullus, the victor of Macedonia, only after opposition from
his disgruntled soldiery, and in the late Republic tribunes were able to delay several triumphs for
years by obstructing the law. 61 Contrary to what some scholars have supposed, no assembly vote was
required to enable magistrates still in office to triumph.62 This explains how Postumius Megellus and
Claudius Pulcher were able to triumph without authorization from senate or people: no promagis-
trate could have followed their example.

56. Polyb. 6.15.7-8. crease in the senate’s effective power from the later
57. Zonar. 8.20.7; cf. Livy 21.63.2, Plut. Marc. 4.6. fourth century. Dionysius (3.22.3) and Livy (3.63.10) en-
58. Livy 7.17.9 (“sine auctoritate patrum populi iussu”), visage the senate as already decreeing triumphs under
10.37.10. Fifth century: P. Servilius Priscus (as consul in the kings.
495) according to Dion. Hal. 6.30.2-3 (triumph not at- 61. For the law see Livy 26.21.5, 45.35.4-39.20; Mommsen
tested in the Capitoline list or Livy); L. Valerius Publi- 1887, 129 n. 2; below, Section 12, for later obstruction.
cola and M. Horatius Barbatus in 449 (nos. 36-37: Livy 62. So rightly Mommsen 1887, 127; Richardson 1975, 59-60;
3.63.8-11, 10.37.10; Dion. Hal. 11.50.1). See further the Bastien 2007, 202; Firpo 2007, 116-117; Vervaet 2014, ch.
sceptical discussion of these fifth and fourth century no- 4.2. Contra: Versnel 1970, 192; Brennan 1996, 316, 319,
tices by Firpo 2007. 330 n 6; Pittenger 2008, 36 n. 12, 49; Lundgreen 2011,
59. Postumius: above, n. 23. Claudius (no. 211): below, at 198-203, 240; cf. Beard 2007, 204-205. No weight can
n. 179. attach to Livy’s claims (4.20.1, 6.42.8) that two early dic-
60. So Mommsen 1887, 134, disputed by Kunkel 1995, 308. tators triumphed with the approval of both senate and
Cf. Cornell 1995, 369-373, arguing for a substantial in- people (cf. Zonar. 7.21.4; Oakley 1997, 720-721).

The senate’s exercise of its control over triumphs has spawned a huge modern bibliography.63
The topic will be explored over the following sections, but some preliminary remarks are in order
Customary practice for seeking a triumph, as it can be discerned from the third century on, gen-
erally ran as follows. A commander who won a significant victory was acclaimed as imperator by
his troops, had his fasces decorated with laurel, and then continued to use the laurel and the title
until his return. Following such an acclamation the commander usually sent a despatch, with lau-
rel attached, to the senate announcing the victory and requesting that a thanksgiving (supplicatio)
be decreed to the gods. On his return to Rome, the commander addressed a meeting of the senate
specially convened outside the pomerium, at which he reported his achievements, and asked that
a triumph be decreed on their account (and also a supplicatio, if not already awarded).64
The senate’s primary task in response to such requests was to determine whether the commander
had acquitted himself in his command sufficiently well to merit a supplicatio and triumph, as is illus-
trated by the formulaic wording used. Livy, in a speech, tells us that decrees honouring commanders
with supplicationes and triumphs included as standard the words “because he has conducted public
business well and successfully” [38.48.15: “quod bene ac feliciter rem publicam administrarit”].
Other texts confirm the use of this or closely similar language both in the senate’s decrees and in the
commanders’ requests.65
Contemporary indications of how second-century commanders presented their case can be found
in the surviving texts of post-triumphal dedicatory inscriptions and also in Plautus’s parodies.66 In
the Persa Plautus makes the cunning slave Toxilus imitate a successful general in thanking the gods
for his successes: “with the enemy defeated, citizens safe, affairs tranquil, peace achieved, the war
ended, affairs well conducted, the army and forces intact” [753-754: “hostibu’ uictis, ciuibu’ saluis,
re placida, pacibu’ perfectis,/ bello exstincto, re bene gesta, integro exercitu et praesidiis”]. In the
Amphitruo the messenger Sosia, practising his announcement of Amphitruo’s victory, prefaces his
detailed narrative with this summary (188-194):

uictores uictis hostibus legiones reueniunt domum,
duello exstincto maxumo atque internecatis hostibus.
quod multa Thebano poplo acerba obiecit funera,
id ui et uirtute militum uictum atque expugnatum oppidum est
imperio atque auspicio mei eri Amphitruonis maxume.
praedaque agroque adoriaque adfecit popularis suos
regique Thebano Creoni regnum stabiliuit suom.

The victorious legions are returning home, with the enemy defeated, a very great war extinguished and the enemy
slaughtered. The town which has brought many bitter funerals to the Theban people has, by the might and valour
of the soldiers, been defeated and stormed, under the command and auspices of my master Amphitryo most greatly.

63. Discussions include: Mommsen 1887, 126-136; Ehlers bene ac feliciter … res publica … gesta esset”). Com-
1939, 497-499; Versnel 1970, 164-195; Richardson manders’ requests: Livy 28.9.7 (“pro re publica fortiter
1975; Develin 1978, and 1985, 207-213; Gruen 1990, feliciterque administrata”), 31.20.2 (“cum in senatu res
129-133; Kunkel 1995, 308-310; Brennan 1996; Pe- ab se per multos annos fortiter feliciterque gestas ex-
trucci 1996; Auliard 2001; Itgenshorst 2005, 159-188; posuisset”), 39.4.2 (“ob rem publicam bene ac feliciter
Bastien 2007, 287-311; Beard 2007, 187-218; Pittenger gestam”). Cf. Cic. Verr. 2.5.34 (commanders’ departure
2008; Lundgreen 2011, 178-253, and in this volume; vows as “pro imperio suo communique re publica”); Livy
Clark 2014; Vervaet 2014, 68-130. I have discussed this 29.27.2-4 (Scipio’s prayer on departure from Sicily for
and other aspects of the triumph briefly at Rich 2013b, Africa). See further Hickson-Hahn 2004, 40.
551-557. 66. Dedicatory inscriptions: M.’ Acilius Glabrio (no. 175),
64. Acclamations: Combès 1966, 9-120, 452-464. Comman- cited by the grammarian Caesius Bassus (Grammati-
ders’ despatches: Oakley 1998, 714. Supplicationes: ci Latini 6.265); L. Aemilius Regillus (no. 176), cited
Halkin 1953; Oakley 1998, 735-736. Senate meetings: by Livy 40.52.5-6 and Caesius Bassus; Ti. Sempronius
Bonnefond-Coudry 1989, 143-149, 269-274. Although Gracchus (no. 193), cited by Livy 41.28.8-9; L. Mummius
variations naturally occurred, Beard’s discussion of cus- (no. 207), ILLRP 122. See further Itgenshorst 2005, 112-
tomary practice (2007, 200-205) is too sceptical. 121, and for Livy’s evidence Phillips 1974, 266-268. For
65. Decrees of supplicationes: Cic. Phil. 14.37 (“ob eas res doubts about the authenticity of Gracchus’ inscription as
bene fortiter feliciterque gestas”); Livy 31.48.12 (“quod cited by Livy see Briscoe 2012, 147-148.

He has endowed his compatriots with booty, land and glory, and for the Theban king Creon has made his kingdom

Ablative absolute phrases recording achievements, as in these passages, occur also in the dedicatory
inscriptions and in Livy’s versions of commanders’ reports, and were evidently typical of the genre.68
Commanders will usually have centred their triumphal claims on having won one or more vic-
tories, supported by assertions of enemy rout, numbers of enemies killed and captured, and details
of booty won. They will also have drawn on other successful features of their command, and, when
they could, will have made much of having ended their war by securing the enemy’s submission, as
in these Plautine parodies.69 However, as we shall see, although it may have come to be given increas-
ing weight, finishing the war was never a necessary requirement for a triumph.
When triumphal applications were opposed, critics might draw on diverse aspects of the appli-
cant’s command, as the accounts of Livy and other sources show. Lines of attack included disput-
ing the commander’s claims, denigrating the defeated enemy as insignificant, and calling attention
to high numbers of Roman casualties. Thus, according to Livy, Q. Minucius Rufus found himself
obliged to content himself with an Alban Mount triumph in 197 when the senate refused him a
triumph at Rome following tribunes’ claims that “in Liguria he had fought trivial engagements hard-
ly worthy of mention and in Gaul had lost a large number of soldiers”.70 When they could, command-
ers no doubt stressed that they had kept their army safe, as in Plautus’s parodies. Another objection
apparently sometimes adduced was that his eagerness for a triumph had led the commander to
return to Rome too early: Livy claims that the senate denied Ti. Aemilius Mamercinus a triumph in
339 on the grounds that by his return he had missed the chance to capture Pedum, and reports the
unsuccessful deployment of this argument against two early second century applications.71
Sometimes difficulties arose in the senate not (or not just) over whether the commander’s achieve-
ments merited a triumph, but over whether his circumstances conformed to the customary expec-
tations for a triumph. Thus, according to Livy, when in 200 L. Cornelius Lentulus applied for a
triumph following the command in Spain to which he had been appointed as a private citizen, the
senate was satisfied that “his achievements were worthy of a triumph” [“res triumpho dignas esse”],
but he could not be granted a full triumph because of the lack of a precedent (exemplum).72 It is on
such problems over customary requirements that most of the modern discussion has centred. For
the most part they arose as a result of Rome’s greatly expanding military commitments and the new
expedients to which they gave rise. Often the issue turned on the commander’s imperium: it was
accepted that only a man commanding under his own imperium and auspicium could triumph, but
commanders appointed as private citizens, like Lentulus, were held to be ineligible for a full tri-
umph, and commands held jointly or with overlapping responsibilities sometimes led to triumphal
problems. Difficulties also arose when, from the later third century, triumphs began to be claimed by
commanders who, instead of bringing their army home, had handed it on to a successor, and, when,
from the later second century, slave wars broke out, such enemies were deemed ineligible for a full
triumph: both were novel problems, which the maiores had never had to address.
All triumphal applications were decided as individual cases, and personal connections and in-
fluence (gratia) will often have played a significant part in the outcome, as several of Livy’s reports

67. Plautus also parodies commanders’ language at Amph. an end”] and included a reference to the achievement of
655-656 (“re gesta bene, uictis hostibus”); Bacch. 1068- peace (“pacis patrandae”).
1071 (“ueluti mi/ euenit ut ouans praeda onustus ceder- 70. Livy 33.27.7-8: “Q. Minucium in Liguribus leuia proe-
em;/ salute nostra atque urbe capta per dolum/ domum lia uix digna dictu fecisse, in Gallia magnum numerum
redduco <iam> integrum omnem exercitum”); Stich. 402 militum amisisse”. For Roman losses at enemy hands
(“bene re gesta saluos conuortor domum”). On Plautus’ as a ground for refusal of a triumph see also Dion. Hal.
triumphal parodies see Fraenkel 2007, 161-165; Halkin 9.26.9; Livy 10.36.19; Oros. 5.4.7; Brennan 1996, 318.
1948. However, fleet losses due to a storm did not prevent the
68. Hickson-Hahn 2004; Oakley 2005b, 375; Beard 2007, commanders holding naval triumphs in 254 (nos. 134-
202, 370. 135; Polyb. 1.37.1-6, Zonar. 8.14.6 for the storm losses).
69. So also in Regillus’ inscription (n. 66), which opened 71. Livy 8.12.9-10; 31.48.2; 36.39.6-40.10.
with “duello magno dirimendo” [“putting a great war to 72. Livy 31.20.3-5; see below, at n. 140.

acknowledge.73 However, while the senate certainly did not operate with a precise set of rules speci-
fying the minimum requirements for a triumph, as Mommsen’s celebrated treatment might appear
to imply, some recent discussions have overstressed the inconsistency and ad hominem character
of the senate’s triumphal decision-making.74 As Livy’s reports bring out, appeals to precedent will
have played an important part in the senators’ deliberations,75 and it will be argued below that a fair
degree of consistency can in fact be discerned in the senate’s responses to the novel triumphal issues
with which it had to deal.
The copious information on triumphs in the period 218-167 in the later books of Livy provides our
best evidence for the senate’s triumphal decision-making, but it must be used with care, for two rea-
sons.76 In the first place, for all its detail, Livy’s coverage of triumphs in these books remains selec-
tive and patchy. Only in eleven passages in these books does Livy give details about the deliberative
process relating to triumphs as well as the ceremony, while for seventeen triumphs he just reports
the ceremony, either without mentioning the senate’s decree or merely stating that it took place.77
No doubt many of these seventeen triumphs will have been awarded by the senate ‘with a great
consensus’, as Livy notes for seven others, but this will not have been true of them all, for example
where the outcome was not a full triumph, but an ovation.78 Livy mentions unsuccessful triumphal
applications to the senate from Scipio in 206 and from four commanders in the early second century,
but more are likely to have occurred.79 Secondly, although often vividly detailed, Livy’s accounts of
triumphal debates probably convey at best only a distorted impression of what actually transpired.
Livy will have reshaped for his own purposes the debate reports which he found in a predecessor,
probably Valerius Antias, who as Livy’s citations show, was his chief Roman source for the period.
Livy’s accounts of conflicts over triumphs have a good deal in common with his main narrative of
the trials of the Scipios, which he avowedly based on Valerius Antias and which other evidence
shows to be heavily distorted.80
Still more problematic are the antiquarian discussions of matters relating to the award of tri-
umphs which we find in writers of the imperial period, of which the most notable are the miscellany
of information which Valerius Maximus collects under the chapter heading de iure triumphi (2.8)
and Aulus Gellius’ discussion of ovations à propos of the commander’s myrtle crown (5.6.20-23).81
Valuable as these are, they contain evident mistakes: thus Valerius Maximus wrongly claims (2.8.5)
that, like Scipio on his return from Spain, Marcellus was denied a triumph after capturing Syracuse
because he had been sent there without a magistracy, and only one of the three grounds which
Gellius gives for the award of an ovation is certainly accurate, namely for wars against unsuitable
opponents such as slaves. As to his other two, there is, as we shall see, no certain case of an ovation
being awarded for a bloodless victory, and no attestation at all for ovations in wars deemed to be not
properly declared.82

73. Livy 31.48.1, 49.1; 38.50.2; 40.59.1. 78. Triumphs decreed magno consensu (or similar phrase):
74. So especially Gruen, Brennan and Beard (above, n. 63). 33.23.1, 37.9, 52.3; 37.46.2, 58.3; 39.42.2 (nos. 165, 167,
75. On the role of exempla in Livy’s triumphal debates see 172, 175, 176, 182, 183). Cf. Oakley 2005b, 445.
Chaplin 2000, 140-156. 79. See below at n. 160.
76. On Livy’s triumphal information see especially Phillips 80. Livy 38.50.4-60.10, on which see now Briscoe 2008, 170-
1974 (tabulation at p. 267); Pittenger 2008 (tabulation at 208, and my discussion at FRHist 3.352-358. In general
pp. 299-302). on Antias see Rich 2005 and at FRHist 1.293-304.
77. Deliberative details: 26.21.1-5; 28.9.7-10; 31.20.1-6, 46.4- 81. For recent discussions see Engels 2001; Itgenshorst 2005,
49.1; 33.22.1-23.3; 34.10.5-6; 36.39.5-40.10; 38.44.9-50.3; 180-188; Goldbeck & Mittag 2008; Lundgreen 2011, 216-
39.4.1-5.12; 39.29.4-5; 45.35.4-39.20 (triumphs nos. 225; Lange 2013, 69-71. I am not persuaded that Valerius
157/158, 160/161, 163, 164, 165/166, 174, 179, 180, 181, Maximus had contemporary imperial policies in mind in
199). Bald references to decrees: 40.38.8; 41.13.6; 41.28.3 this chapter, either to their favour (so Engels) or critical-
(ovation); 45.35.4 (nos. 186/7, 192, 197, 200/1). Livy re- ly (so Goldbeck & Mittag). On the alleged law requiring
ports the following triumphs with no reference to the five thousand enemy to be killed for a triumph, reported
decrees: nos. 162, 168 (ovation), 170, 171, 173, 184 (ova- by Val. Max. 2.8.1 and Oros. 5.4.7, see below Section 11.
tion), 185, 188-191. See also 37.58.6-59.1, 42.21.7 (nos. 82. Gell. 5.6.21: “the reason for holding an ovation and not a
177, 198: brief comments on the decrees). Livy does not triumph is, when wars are not correctly declared or are
report Q. Fabius Labeo’s celebration of a naval triumph not waged with a proper enemy or the enemies’ name
(no. 178), but alludes to the dispute over it at 37.60.6, is humble and unsuitable, as with slaves and pirates,
38.47.5. or, through a surrender having been suddenly made, a

In view of the difficulties posed by our direct evidence, some progress may be made on these
questions by assessing the evidence of the triumphal record itself across the various phases of Re-
publican history, and it is to this undertaking that we now turn.

5. Triumphs in the early Republic, c. 509-344 BC

We need not concern ourselves here with the much discussed question of the origins of the tri-
umph.83 There seems no good reason to doubt that before the end of the monarchy the essential
features of the triumph had already become established, namely a parade through the city by the
victorious commander and army, preceded by their booty and captives, which culminated in sacri-
fice on the Capitol in fulfilment of a vow made by the commander when he set out.84 Much warfare
in the archaic period may have been raiding and reprisals conducted by individuals and groups, and,
as Armstrong (2013) has suggested, the institution of the triumph may have been one of the ways by
which the community brought it under its control.
As noted above (at n. 35), our sources’ detailed annual record of Roman warfare in the early
Republic cannot be trusted, but the broad outlines are clear enough. Early in the fifth century the
Romans formed alliances with their fellow Latins and with the Hernici, which stayed firm until the
mid-fourth century. Over the rest of the fifth century, they fought a good deal of mostly inconclusive
warfare with their other neighbours, chiefly the Volsci and Aequi and the Etruscan city of Veii. From
the early fourth century they gained the upper hand, beginning with the capture and destruction of
Veii, and with the Gauls’ sack of Rome proving only a temporary disruption.85
As Table 2 showed, the record of triumphs preserved by the Capitoline list and, where it is lost, the
literary sources yields an average of just 0.36 triumphs per year for the years 509-449 and 389-344,
by contrast with the average of 0.73 for the years from 343 to 19, while for 448-390 the annual aver-
age is a good deal lower still (0.19). As was argued in Section 2, the reliability of the triumphs record-
ed for the early Republic is low. Nonetheless, the overall impression of the frequency of triumphs
in this period given by the record is plausible enough.86 The true number of fifth-century triumphs
may well have been even lower. Livy’s narrative itself implies that warfare was by Roman standards
exceptionally infrequent in the later fifth century, reporting Roman forces as in combat in only four-
teen of the years between 454 to 411. This may reflect an authentic memory of a period of compara-
tively low warfare, while Livy’s claim that the Romans were at war almost every year in the early fifth
and early fourth centuries may well be exaggerated. The Romans are likely to have been somewhat
more successful in their fifth-century warfare than modern scholars have sometimes allowed (Rich
2007, 12-13), but the period saw hardly any Roman expansion. Successful warfare will have become
more frequent as expansion got under way in the early fourth century, and the record showing nine
triumphs for the years 361-354, several of them against the now disaffected Latins and Hernici, may
accurately reflect that such celebrations were then becoming more common.

victory has been won without dust, as is wont to be said, 83. See the admirably sceptical treatment of Beard 2007,
and without bloodshed” [“ouandi ac non triumphandi 305-318.
causa est, cum aut bella non rite indicta neque cum ius- 84. The attempt of Rüpke 2006 to downdate the institu-
to hoste gesta sunt aut hostium nomen humile et non tion of the triumph to the fourth century is misguided
idoneum est, ut seruorum piratarumque, aut deditione (see Versnel 2006). That the sacrifices and dedication
repente facta impuluerea, ut dici solet, incruentaque of the laurels on the Capitol which concluded a stand-
uictoria obuenit”]. The appearance of the same doctrine ard triumph fulfilled the commander’s departure vow is
in Paul’s epitome of Festus (213 L: “ouantes introibant, shown by Livy 45.39.10-12 and RGDA 4.1: see further
cum bella non erant indicta aut sine sanguine confecta”) Laqueur 1909; Beseler 1909; Ehlers 1939: 495-6; Versnel
shows that Festus’ source, the Augustan scholar Verrius 1970: 170-94; Rüpke 1990: 225.
Flaccus, was here probably also followed by Gellius. Ver- 85. See further Cornell 1989 and 1995, 293-326; Rich 2007.
rius himself may perhaps have derived this interpreta- 86. Noted by Cornell (1989, 289-290; 1995, 308), who opti-
tion of ovations from Varro (Rohde 1942, 1893). For the mistically takes this as indicating the reliability of the
doctrine that ovations might be awarded for a bloodless record.
victory see further below at nn. 92, 208.

Few campaigns in this period will have lasted more than a few weeks or produced any form of
peace settlement. Most of its triumphs will thus have been merely celebrations of the return of an
army with its plunder after a successful engagement.
The triumphal record attributes all the triumphs of the period to consuls or to military dictators,
then frequently appointed. In many years in the later fifth and early fourth century (traditionally,
from 444 to 367) the chief magistrates were not consuls, but consular tribunes, that is, boards of
between three and six tribuni militum consulari potestate. As Zonaras noted (7.19.5, epitomizing
Cassius Dio), no consular tribune is recorded as triumphing.87 It is possible, as many scholars have
supposed, that the nature of their appointment was for some reason felt to disqualify them from
holding a triumph.88 If so, this may have been a further factor in reducing the frequency of triumphs
during the period in which consular tribunes were appointed. However, it may be that no consular
tribunes triumphed just because none was felt to have achieved a sufficient military success: as Rid-
ley (1986, 456-459) has pointed out, Livy’s narrative credits none of them with a significant victory.89
The mid fourth century saw the ending of the patrician monopoly of the consulship and dicta-
torship and thus of the triumph. Our sources do not report any dispute over the first triumph held
by a plebeian consul, C. Poetelius Libo, in 360 (no. 55), but Livy may be right that the first plebeian
dictator in 356, was appointed and held his triumph despite the opposition of the senate.90
Eight consuls are recorded as being awarded ovations between 503 and 360. Those in 503, 487,
462, 392 and 360 (nos. 20, 26, 32, 47, 56) are reported as held by a consul whose colleague is ascribed
a full triumph, and in each case Dionysius or Livy explains the ovation (explicitly or by implication)
as a reward for a military success deemed to be less than that of the other consul.91 However, Pliny
(NH 15.125) explains the ovation of 503, the first recorded, as for a victory without bloodshed,
which, as we have seen, is one of the grounds for ovations listed by Aulus Gellius.92 A compara-
ble explanation is given by Dionysius (9.36) for the ovation of 474 (no. 29), which he represents
A. Manlius as requesting after concluding a forty-year armistice with Veii without fighting. As to
the other two ovations, one (no. 43) is explained by Livy as for an easy victory, and for the other
(no. 44) he offers no explanation.93 These explanations are surely just later writers’ conjecture and
deserve no credence, and most or all of these reported ovations may in fact be unhistorical. Later
Roman tradition clearly retained a memory of the ovation as an ancient and less prestigious form
of the triumph, but probably no understanding of the circumstances in which it had been held, and
little or no reliable information about individual occasions when commanders had entered Rome in
ovation. As we shall see, this obscure memory was to prove a useful resource from the third century
on, as a compromise solution for cases in which claims for a full triumph clashed with customary
expectations, while the unique circumstances of the celebration of the Metaurus victory in 207 may
have prompted speculation that ovations had earlier been used to provide unequal rewards for con-
sular colleagues.

6. Triumphs during the conquest of central and southern Italy, 343-265 BC

From the late 340s, the Romans’ power grew rapidly. They first advanced into Campania, and soon
their armies were waging war across central and southern Italy. The Samnites were their principal

87. The long lacuna in the first pilaster of the Capitoline list count of the campaign of 462 (Dion. Hal. 9.69-71; Livy
extends between triumphs of 437 and 367, but can be 3.8, 10.1-4). Livy 3.10.4 asserts that Veturius in 462 en-
filled from other sources, in most cases with confidence tered Rome in ovation without his soldiers, a detail pos-
(see above, at n. 19). sibly modelled on Claudius Nero’s celebration in 207 (see
88. So Mommsen 1887, 128; Versnel 1970, 186-189; Richard below at n. 127).
1992; Stewart 1998, 52-94; Brennan 2000, 52-53. 92. Above, at n. 82. Pliny uses the association with bloodless
89. Cf. Cornell 1995, 337; Pittenger 2008, 62-66. victory to explain the myrtle wreath worn by the com-
90. Livy 7.17.6-9, 10.37.10; Oakley 1998, 188; above, at n. 58. mander in an ovation, a doctrine also asserted by Plut.
91. So explicitly Dion. Hal. 5.47.2 (prior defeat), 8.67.9-10, Marc. 22.2-6.
Livy 5.31.4, 7.11.9, and by implication both writers’ ac- 93. Livy 4.43.2, 53.11.

enemies, but they also fought the Gauls of the north, the Etruscans, and almost all the other peoples
of Italy, and finally King Pyrrhus. By the 260s, all Italy except the north had submitted to Roman
rule. Thus in about seventy years the Romans had completed the conquest of most of Italy and had
become habituated to nearly continuous war and to the profits of war -- booty, land confiscations
and the glory of victory.
The sharp increase in the frequency of triumphs in this period shown by the triumphal record
is thus entirely plausible. As Table 2 shows, the annual rate of recorded triumphs rises to 0.67 for
the years 343-301, and to around 1.0 for 300-265. As we saw in Section 2, there are a good many
problems of reliability for the triumphs reported for the later fourth century, and some for those of
the early third, and so the true frequency for both periods may be somewhat lower than that yielded
by the record. Nonetheless, we can accept that in the later fourth century triumphs became roughly
twice as frequent as they had been before and reached around the rate of two triumphs every three
years which continued to be the norm for the rest of the Republic, and that in the early third century,
when the Romans decisively gained the upper hand over their opponents, triumphs reached a peak
of about one per year.94
It is likely enough, as has often been supposed, that the ritual of the triumph underwent consider-
able development in this period, though we have no direct evidence.95 The displays of booty carried
in many of these processions will certainly have outclassed anything that Rome had seen before in
scale and splendour. The successful commanders of the new patricio-plebeian nobility also found
other, more permanent forms of display to celebrate their victories.96 Although the practice of dedi-
cating temples vowed by commanders in battle was not new, there was now a striking upsurge: nine
such temple dedications are known for the years 344-265.97 Notable displays of spoils included the
adornment of the speakers’ platform with captured ships’ beaks in 338, the decoration of the Fo-
rum with Samnite spoils in 310 and 293, and the colossal statue of Jupiter set up on the Capitol by
Sp. Carvilius in 293, fashioned from captured Samnite armour.98
Some of the wars of this period were protracted conflicts extending over many years, but yielded
multiple triumphs. Many of the triumphs thus, as before, merely celebrated victories, parading the
booty and captives which had been won, with no settlement achieved. This was particularly the case
in the long struggle with the Samnites. War with the Samnites continued with only brief interrup-
tions from the outbreak of the so-called Second Samnite War in 327 down to their final defeat in
272, and within this period short-lived settlements favourable to Rome were achieved only in 304
and 290. However, during those years no less than 31 triumphs are recorded over the Samnites ei-
ther on their own or jointly with others.
Both distance from Rome and the nature of the warfare meant that campaigns now typically
lasted much longer than the brief expeditions which had been the norm when the Romans were
fighting only their neighbours. In several years in this period commanders are reported as keeping
their armies in service in war zones over winter and then handing them over to their successor, and,
although the first such notices are questionable, those for the Third Samnite and Pyrrhic Wars may
be well founded.99 However, we never at this period hear of commanders handing their armies over
to a successor and then claiming a triumph on their return to Rome: triumphing commanders still
always entered Rome at the head of their armies.
Exceptional military requirements now led to the occasional use of the novel expedient of pro-
roguing a consul in his command as a proconsul, and three of those prorogued in this way tri-

94. On the exceptional tally of triumphs in the Samnite War by an aedile from fines (Livy 10.33.9).
period see also Oakley 1993, 29. 98. Livy 8.14.12, 9.40.16, 10.46.7-8; Pliny, NH 34.20, 43.
95. See Bastien 2007, 151-192, with further bibliography. 99. Rosenstein 2004, 29-35, but note the reservations of
96. Convenient summaries at Oakley 1993, 29-35; Hölke- Oakley 1999, 584, and 2005a, 330 on the reports of over-
skamp 1993, 27-29, and 2011, 232-240, 324-329. wintering. Rosenstein also calls attention to the high
97. Juno Moneta, Salus, Bellona, Jupiter Victor, Jupiter Sta- proportion of triumphs in this period dated to Janu-
tor, Quirinus, Fors Fortuna, Consus, Tellus, Pales: Orlin ary-March as apparent evidence for armies being kept in
1997, 199-200. The dedication of a temple of Victoria in service until late in the year.
293 also reflects contemporary bellicosity, but was made

umphed on their return to Rome. The first prorogation took place in 326 to enable Q. Publilius Philo
to complete the siege of Naples. Both Livy (8.26.7) and the Capitoline list note his triumph (no. 73)
as the first to be celebrated by a proconsul, but there is no indication that any objection was raised
to the innovation. The prorogations which took place in 296-295 merely gave support to the consuls
in the critical period leading up to the decisive battle of Sentinum, but the two later commanders to
be prorogued, in 291 and 280, both triumphed (nos. 97, 107).100
Occasional resort continued to be made to military dictators in the late fourth century, four of
whom are recorded as triumphing (nos. 74, 82, 88, 89). However, from 300 on such dictators ceased
to be appointed, except at critical moments in 249 and 216. Thus, with one possible exception, the
very high number of triumphs recorded for the early third century were all held by consuls in or
prorogued from their magistracy. The resulting average of 0.94 consular triumphs per year for the
years 300-265 is much higher than this group was able to achieve in any other period (Table 4).
Triumphs were also now spread somewhat more evenly among consulars. In the mid and late
fourth century there had been a strong tendency to concentrate military leadership among a small
group of proven commanders, with repeated tenures of the consulship. However, after 295, itera-
tion of the consulship was much reduced, and so repeated triumphs also became somewhat fewer,
although some second triumphs still occurred and Curius Dentatus was able to accumulate four.101
The Capitoline entry for Curius’ final triumph in 275 over Pyrrhus and the Samnites (no. 111)
confirms that it was his fourth.102 The entries for his first three are all lost in the lacuna between the
triumphs of 291 and 282, a period for which the loss of Livy also leaves us poorly informed. Curius’
first two triumphs, over the Samnites and Sabines (nos. 99, 101), are attested as held in his consul-
ship in 290, making him the first to triumph twice in the same magistracy.103 For his third we have
only the report in his short biography in the late and often erratic De viris illustribus that “the third
time he entered the city in ovation from the Lucani” [33.3: “tertio de Lucanis ouans urbem introit”].
Earlier writers supposed that he held this ovation like his triumphs as consul in 290 or alternatively
as proconsul in 289 (so Degrassi). However, Brennan (1994) has made a strong case for dating the
ovation to 283, when the Romans are attested as coming into conflict with the Lucanians, and for
supposing that Curius defeated them and held his ovation as praetor, having been appointed to the
office as a suffect following the death of L. Caecilius Metellus Denter in battle with the Gauls, as
reported by Polybius (2.19.8).104 Since this appears to be the best reconstruction available, I have
adopted it in my tables (see Table 6, no. 102). If it is correct, Curius was thus the first praetor to
triumph. We have no indication as to why his success was held to deserve only an ovation (if this
notice is correct). It can hardly have been because Curius was a praetor, since no objection was sub-
sequently made to praetors holding full triumphs in or following their magistracy.

7. Triumphs in the First Punic War, 264-241 BC

Having completed the conquest of most of Italy, the Romans in 264 intervened in Sicily and so be-
came embroiled in their first war with Carthage. This rapidly turned into a protracted struggle for

100. On prorogation in this period see Loreto 1993, 35-77; triumph only for successes won in their consulship.
Oakley 1999, 658-661; Brennan 2000, 73-75; Beck 2005, 101. On the reduction in iteration of the consulship see Cor-
106-112; Hölkeskamp 2011, 126-140, 314. The second nell 1995, 371-372; Brennan 2000, 647-652; and Loreto,
triumph of Q. Fabius Maximus Rullianus (no. 83) is Beck, and Hölkeskamp, cited n. 100.
not to be counted as proconsular: above, n. 53. I am not 102. Other sources are aware only of Curius’ three full tri-
convinced by the argument of Brennan 2000, 74, that umphs: Cic. Sen. 55; Plut. Cato Mai. 2.1; Apul. Apol. 17.
prorogations at this period were normally for six months 103. Livy will have commented on this in Book 11, as ap-
(so Livy 10.16.1, 20.2 for the prorogations of the consuls pears from the periocha’s observation that “bis in eodem
of 297 for 296). The case of Q. Fabius Maximus Gurges, magistratu triumphauit”.
unsuccessful as consul in 292 but triumphing as procon- 104. Brennan’s reconstruction is accepted by Rosenstein
sul in 291 for a victory won in that year, disproves the 2012, 36-38. Beck 2005, 196-197, retains the dating of
claim of Develin 1978, 430, that proconsuls at first could 290/289 for Curius’ ovation.

mastery in Sicily, eventually resolved in 241 when the Carthaginians accepted a peace treaty under
which they withdrew from Sicily and paid a substantial indemnity. Of the nineteen triumphs held
in these years, three were won in Italy, for the suppression of revolts by Volsinii in 264 (no. 125) and
the Falisci in 241 (nos. 142-143), but the remaining sixteen were all won against the Carthaginians,
either alone or with allies. One of the triumphs was for successes in Sardinia and Corsica (no. 128)
and two for naval victories off Africa (nos. 134-135), but all the rest were for victories in Sicily or
off its coast. The winning of so many triumphs from this single, long-drawn out war demonstrates
that victories on their own were still, as before, enough for a triumph, with no requirement to have
achieved a peace settlement.
Fifteen of these triumphs were won in the years 264-250, so maintaining the average of one
triumph per year which, as we have seen, had been achieved in the later years of the conquest of
Italy. The disastrous defeat at Drepana in 249 and the ensuing loss of yet another fleet in a storm
was followed by temporary Roman abandonment of naval warfare and attritional fighting on land,
resulting in eight years without triumphs. However, the Roman resumption of the naval offensive in
242 was rewarded by the decisive naval victory at the Aegates Islands, and so the year 241 saw four
triumphs, by the victors in this battle and against the Falisci.
The Romans undertook serious naval combat for the first time in this war, and the triumphs cele-
brating their fleets’ victories were distinguished as ‘naval’ and are recorded as such in the Capitoline
list.105 The first naval triumph, following the victory at Mylae in 260 (no. 127), was accompanied by
the conferment of special honours on the commander, C. Duilius: a column decorated with ships’
rams (columna rostrata), and the lifelong enjoyment of the magisterial right to be escorted home
from dinners by a torchbearer and fluteplayer.106 Six further naval triumphs followed later in the
war, in 257-254 and 241 (nos. 132-135, 140-141). The displays in these triumphs will have included
distinctive spoils, such as rams, and the socii navales, the ship’s crews, will have taken part in the
For many years of the war both consuls were committed to the war effort, often with one in
charge of the fleet and one of the land forces. To maintain their position in Sicily, the Romans were
obliged most years to maintain an army there over winter, and Regulus and his army spent the
winter of 256/255 in Africa.108 Thus prorogations, which had been only occasionally used during
the conquest of Italy, were now regularly employed. Six of the commanders triumphing in the war
did so as proconsuls (nos. 129, 134-136, 139, 140), returning in the year after their consulship, and
to these we must add Q. Valerius Falto, prorogued in 241 from his praetorship as discussed below,
and A. Atilius Caiatinus (no. 131), whose command was extended after his consulship in 258 by the
alternative device of having him elected to the praetorship, a procedure which had sometimes been
resorted to in the early third century and was now apparently used for the last time.109 Although our
sources are unclear on the matter, troops may sometimes have been passed on to new commanders,
but returning commanders probably always brought at least some forces home, and there is no
reason to doubt that all those triumphing in the war were followed in the procession by soldiers and/
or sailors.110
Some highly exceptional circumstances in relation to the final victory in the war gave rise to the
first attested triumphal dispute over a shared command. In 242 the consuls C. Lutatius Catulus

105. On these and later naval triumphs see now Dart and Hjort Lange.
Vervaet 2011. 108. On overwintering in the First Punic War see Rosenstein
106. On Duilius’ achievements and honours see Bleckmann 2004, 33.
2002, 113-144; Kondratieff 2004; Beck 2005, 216-228; 109. Pr. in the Capitoline entry for Caiatinus’ triumph must
Roller 2009. For the rostral columns awarded to him be completed as pr(aetor), not (uniquely in the list) as
and to M. Aemilius Paullus following his naval triumph pr(oconsul): Degrassi 1947, 548; Broughton 1951, 208;
in 254 (no. 135; column attested by Livy 42.20.1) see Brennan 2000, 80-83 (refuting the contrary view of
Sehlmeyer 1999, 117-120. Thiel 1954, 201 n. 446). On praetorships following con-
107. Rams: Östenberg 2009, 46-50. I shall be discussing the sulships in the early third century see Brennan 2000,
participation of socii navales in naval triumphs (attested 76.
by Livy 45.42.3) in a forthcoming paper with Carsten 110. Cf. Rosenstein 2004, 207-208 n. 43.

and A. Postumius Albinus were each appointed to command in Sicily, but the pontifex maximus
L. Caecilius Metellus prevented Postumius from going because of his duties as flamen Martialis, and
the praetor Q. Valerius Falto was accordingly sent out in his place. Catulus was then injured while
besieging Drepana before the sea-battle.111 The Capitoline list shows that both Catulus and Falto
triumphed on return, respectively as proconsul and propraetor: Catulus is recorded as triumphing
“over the Carthaginians from Sicily” [“de Poenis ex Sicilia”], and Falto three days later “from Sicily”
[“ex Sicilia”]. Valerius Maximus (2.8.2) tells us that the triumph was decreed just to Catulus; when
Falto applied for one too, Catulus objected; Falto then challenged him under the sponsio procedure,
claiming that Catulus had been confined by his injury to a litter during the battle and he himself
had carried out all the responsibilities of the command, but the verdict was given against him on the
ground that as consul Catulus had held greater imperium and auspicium than Falto. This appears
to suggest that Falto did not triumph, but the Capitoline entry shows that he did. Scholars have
disputed as to how much credence should be given to Valerius Maximus’ evidence and how Falto’s
triumph came to be authorized.112 It is, however, clear that a praetor’s right to triumph was not itself
in question and the dispute arose only because two commanders with unequal imperium had been in
command in the same battle.113 Praetorian triumphs were a rarity in this period only because prae-
tors were still normally retained at Rome. The exceptional opportunity created by the retention of
the flamen Martialis enabled Falto to become the first man to triumph pro praetore, and (if Brennan
is right that Curius Dentatus had held his ovation as praetor) the second commander to triumph for
successes won as praetor.

8. Triumphs between the wars, 240-219 BC

In the years between the first two Punic Wars warfare was less intense and protracted, but the consuls
are nonetheless attested in action every year except for 241-240 and 228-226. Frequent campaigning
took place against the Gauls and Ligurians of northern Italy and to establish control in Sardinia
(which the Carthaginians had been obliged to cede) and Corsica, while the piratical activities of the
Illyrians in the east Adriatic induced the Romans to launch two expeditions against them, in 229 and
219. Triumphs were won against all these enemies: thirteen are attested for the period, and between
one and three more are likely to have been won in northern Italy in 221-220 (above, at n. 26). Thus the
average rate of triumphs in these years was around two every three years, below the rate of one per
year achieved in the first half of the third century, but in line with the overall average over the middle
and late Republic. The shorter campaigns of these years were mostly completed within consuls’ year
of office, and so the only triumph held by a proconsul was that of Cn. Fulvius Centumalus in 228, the
first from Illyria and the only naval triumph of the period (no. 150). Why his colleague L. Postumius
Albinus, who had commanded the land forces in Illyria, did not triumph is unknown.
In 231 the senate rejected a request from C. Papirius Maso for a triumph for his campaign in
Corsica, presumably because of the heavy losses which, as Zonaras (8.18.14) informs us, he had
suffered. However, Papirius held a triumph all the same (no. 149), on the Alban Mount 27 kilo-
metres south of Rome, setting a precedent which three later commanders were to follow. He also
subsequently wore a myrtle crown at games, a privilege enjoyed by those who had held an ovation.114

111. Retention of the flamen Martialis: Livy per. 19 and pute on the basis that the title to the victory belonged to
37.51.1-2; Val. Max. 1.1.2; Tac. Ann. 3.58.3. Catulus’ Catulus alone, but Falto’s achievements in Sicily were
illness: Zonar. 8.17.1-2 (also mentioning the praetor’s nonetheless worthy of a triumph. Valerius Maximus is
appointment); Eutrop. 2.27.1; Oros. 4.10.5. our only source for Falto’s role in the battle.
112. See especially Brennan 2000, 83-85; Vervaet 2014, 94‑99 113. Contra Richardson 1975, 51-52, arguing that at this pe-
(arguing that Valerius Maximus’ evidence is not incom- riod praetors were deemed to be not normally eligible
patible with Falto’s triumphing). The omission of the for a triumph.
Carthaginians from the citation for Falto in the Capi- 114. Papirius’ Alban triumph and myrtle crown: Piso ap.
toline list may indicate that the senate resolved the dis- Pliny, NH 15.126 (= FRHist 9 F33); Val. Max. 3.6.5. Both

Triumphs on the Alban Mount culminated at the temple of Jupiter Latiaris on its summit, the site
of the Latin Festival which the consuls were required to hold early in their magistracy. There is no
reason to suppose, as many scholars have done, that Papirius was reviving an ancient practice of the
Latin League (disbanded by Rome in 338).115 His expedient was an ingenious innovation to evade the
senate’s rebuff and the tribunes who would seek to enforce it if he attempted to triumph in Rome.
Although denied the opportunity to parade his achievements before the Roman people, he would
nonetheless have been able to claim to have fulfilled the vow which, like all Roman commanders,
he had made on the Capitol before departing, that, if successful, he would perform sacrifices and
dedicate the laurels from his fasces at Jupiter’s temple.116
In 223 the consuls C. Flaminius and P. Furius Philus opted for more outright defiance. They were
in dispute with the senate (with which Flaminius was at odds throughout his career), because they
had ignored recall when the auspices for their election had been found to be invalid. Instead, they
secured authorization for their triumphs from the popular assembly (nos. 152-153).117
The following year saw a notable revival of a practice of hoary antiquity when Marcellus, having
personally killed the Gallic king Virdumarus, claimed the right to dedicate his victims’ weaponry to
Jupiter Feretrius as spolia opima, reputedly only the third Roman to do so and probably the first to
combine such a dedication with a chariot triumph. As we have seen, his achievement is accorded the
longest entry in the Capitoline list, closing the second of the four pilasters.118

9. Triumphs in the Second Punic War, 218-201 BC

The Second Punic War lasted nearly as long as the First and involved the Romans in unprecedented
levels of commitment, fielding multiple forces in Italy as well as in several overseas regions. Huge
demands were made on the manpower of the Romans and their allies, and armies were kept in
service over many years. Devices employed to meet command needs included the extensive use of
prorogation, some grants of imperium to private citizens, and the abandonment for the duration of
any constraint on iteration of the consulship, with some seasoned commanders such as M. Claudius
Marcellus, Q. Fabius Maximus and Q. Fulvius Flaccus accumulating multiple consulships. Praetors,
who had been increased in 227 to four per year to provide governors for Sicily and Sardinia, were
now regularly employed in military commands, but always with relatively minor responsibilities
which did not offer opportunities for triumphs.
The war saw a sharp drop in the frequency of triumphs. Although the Capitoline list is lost for
this period, it is clear that only six triumphs were held, from five commands. The rate thus fell to an
average of just one triumph per three years for the first time since the expansion in Italy began in the
later fourth century. One factor in this drop was the state of the Romans’ fortunes: in the first years
of the war they were fighting for survival and suffered only defeats. From about 211 the tide turned
decisively in the Romans’ favour, but triumphs were awarded only very sparingly. Whereas relative-
ly minor successes had often earned triumphs in the past, only the most important achievements
which ended the resistance of major enemies now appear to have been considered for triumphs, and
even some of these either received celebrations of reduced status or were not accorded triumphs
at all. The senate’s decisions in these cases were prompted by difficulties resulting from the special

these sources and the entry in the Capitoline list at- 116. Cf. Smith 2012, 277, noting that those who triumphed
test that Papirius was the first to hold an Alban Mount on the Alban Mount were, like those celebrating a stand-
triumph. Baudou 1997 is mistaken in taking seriously ard triumph, returning to a sanctuary which they had
the statement of Paul. Fest. 131 L that Papirius wore visited before departing for their command. On the
a myrtle crown because the location of his victory was significance of the Latin Festival in relation to the con-
known as Campi Murtei. suls see also now Simon 2011. For triumphs as fulfilling
115. So first Niebuhr 1830, 41-42 (= 1848, 36-37); rightly re- departure vows see above n. 84.
jected by Brennan 1996, 321-322. Niebuhr’s view is still 117. Above, n. 57.
upheld by Grandazzi 2008, 735-737. 118. See above n. 19.

circumstances of the war, but may also reflect a new strictness in adjudging triumphs in this period
of crisis.
The first triumphal application came from Marcellus on his return in the late summer of 211. He
had been deployed in Sicily since his consulship in 214 and now sought a triumph for his capture
of Syracuse after an extended siege. Carthaginian resistance continued elsewhere in Sicily, and so,
when recalling Marcellus, the senate had instructed him to leave his army there, handing it over to
the praetor M. Cornelius Cethegus. Because he had not brought his army back, the senate awarded
Marcellus only an ovation. However, he secured the chariot triumph which he evidently felt that his
achievements deserved by holding one on the Alban Mount, following the precedent set by Papirius
Maso twenty years before. Marcellus celebrated his Alban Mount triumph the day before he entered
Rome in ovation, so uniquely holding two triumphs for the same victory (nos. 157, 158).119
No doubt political rivalries will have played a part in the senate’s decision to deny Marcellus a full
triumph.120 The fact that at his last triumph Marcellus had achieved a unique distinction by com-
bining it with the dedication of the spolia opima may also have made some senators less willing to
concede him a full triumph now. However, Marcellus’ political position was far from weak overall:
he was to hold the consulship for the following year, and his election to it may in fact have preceded
and prompted his recall to Rome.121 Livy claims that Marcellus “complained mildly no more on his
own than on his soldiers’ behalf that, although his assignment had been completed, he had not been
allowed to bring his army home” [26.21.2: “questus leniter non suam magis quam militum uicem
quod prouincia confecta exercitum deportare non licuisset”]. However, the ongoing war in Sicily
and the pressures on manpower elsewhere would in fact have ruled out bringing the army home at
this point.
The objection that Marcellus had not brought his army home is not to be dismissed, as by
Richardson (1975, 55) as having “the air of a technicality introduced for the purpose”. As we have
seen, it is unlikely that any earlier commander had triumphed without bringing home his army (or,
for naval triumphs, fleet), and until this moment the presence of those who had served under him
behind the commander’s chariot must have been universally regarded as an essential feature of the
triumphal procession.122
Livy formulates the senate’s dilemma as follows (26.21.3-4):

cum multis uerbis actum esset utrum minus conueniret cuius nomine absentis ob res prospere ductu eius gestas
supplicatio decreta foret et dis immortalibus habitus honos ei praesenti negare triumphum, an quem tradere exerci-
tum successori iussissent – quod nisi manente in prouincia bello non decerneretur – eum quasi debellato triumpha-
re cum exercitus testis meriti atque immeriti triumphi abesset, medium uisum ut ouans urbem iniret.

When it had been discussed at length whether it was less inappropriate to deny a triumph in his presence to someone
in whose name in their absence a supplicatio had been decreed and honour given to the immortal gods for successful
achievements under his leadership, or that a man whom they had ordered to hand over his army to his successor
(which would not be decreed unless war continued in the province) should triumph as if the war had been ended,
when his army was not present as a witness to whether the triumph was merited or unmerited, it was decided as a
middle course that he should enter the city in ovation.

As Chaplin (2000, 143-144) observes, Livy employs convolutedly subordinate syntax to bring out the
senate’s perplexity. In this compressed statement, Livy omits to note that there was no precedent

119. Livy 26.21.1-6; Plut. Marc. 22.1; Val. Max. 2.8.5 (misin- (συνεχώρησεν αὐτοῖς τὸν μὲν ἐντελῆ καὶ μέγαν εἰς τὸ
terpreting: above, at n. 82); vir. ill. 45.6. For discussions Ἀλβανὸν ὄρος ἐξελάσαι, τὸν δ' ἐλάττω καταγαγεῖν εἰς
see Richardson 1975, 54-55; Eckstein 1987, 169-171; τὴν πόλιν).
Brennan 1996, 323-324; Beck 2005, 315-317; Pittenger 120. So Plutarch (ἐνισταμένων δὲ τῶν ἐχθρῶν) and vir. ill.
2008, 85-91; Lange, in this volume. Marcellus’ Alban (“per calumniam”).
Mount triumph has sometimes erroneously been called 121. Livy 26.22.13 reports his election after his return, but
an ovation (so e.g. Broughton 1951, 274), but Plutarch’s states that, like his colleague, he was elected in ab-
wording confirms that, like others triumphing there, he sence.
rode in a chariot, rather than walking as in an ovation 122. So rightly Develin 1978, 432; Rosenstein 2004, 208.

for a commander triumphing without his army, although the fact that no earlier instance was de-
ployed as a counter-argument confirms that this was the case. The lack of a precedent would not in
itself have been decisive, since earlier novelties had been accepted without demur, such as triumphs
by proconsuls and praetors and naval triumphs. However, Livy reports two arguments as adduced
against this innovation, and, since both recur in subsequent reports of triumphal debate, we can
accept that they were in fact deployed on this occasion. The claim that his army had to be present to
bear witness that a commander’s achievements were worthy of a triumph would, if upheld, prevent
anyone from triumphing in the absence of their army. The other contention was that the retention
of the army in Sicily confirmed that the war had not been finished, so refuting Marcellus’ claim of
an “assignment completed” [“prouincia confecta”]. This objection disregarded the fact that ending
the war had never been treated as a necessary requirement for a triumph, but it did leave open a
possible way forward which, as we shall see, was to be exploited when the problem of a commander
returning without his army recurred, namely that such a commander might nonetheless be awarded
a full triumph, if he could show that he had finished his war.123
In settling on an ovation as a compromise solution, the senate was reviving an institution which
had been in abeyance since 283, if Curius Dentatus’ ovation is authentic and to be dated to that year,
and, if it is not authentic, from much earlier. (As we have seen, ovations are reported as occurring
quite often down to 360, but these notices are all suspect.) In reviving this ancient practice now, the
senate was using the ovation in a way which is not attested earlier and is likely to be an innovation,
namely to resolve the problem of how to reward a commander whose achievements were agreed to
be worthy of a triumph, but whose circumstances did not conform to the customary expectations for
a triumph. Having devised this novel use for the ovation in Marcellus’ case, the senate was to employ
it extensively in the following years to resolve other cases of this kind, and this was probably the sole
function of ovations over the remaining years of the Republic.
The turn in the Romans’ fortunes in 211 was marked by the capture not only of Syracuse, but also
of Capua, whose long siege was successfully concluded by Fulvius Flaccus. Livy and other narrative
sources make no reference to a triumphal application from Fulvius for this achievement, but Vale-
rius Maximus claims that he applied and was refused “from the utmost care to observe the rule, by
which it was provided that a triumph should be decreed for the increase of empire, not for recov-
ering what had belonged to the Roman people”.124 In this form the alleged rule must be spurious,
since triumphs were often awarded following the suppression of rebellions. However, it is possible
that a triumph for the recovery of Capua was felt to be inappropriate because, before their revolt, its
people had been Roman citizens (albeit without the vote), and Fulvius therefore either did not seek
a triumph or, if he did, was refused.125
Fabius Maximus’ recovery of another major Italian city, Tarentum, in his consulship in 209 did
not face the same difficulty, since this community had been allied, and he accordingly celebrated it
with a full triumph, the first of the war (no. 159).126
In 207 Hannibal’s brother Hasdrubal arrived in northern Italy from Spain bringing substantial
reinforcements. One of the consuls, M. Livius Salinator, had been deployed there, and his colleague,
C. Claudius Nero, learning of Hasdrubal’s arrival through an intercepted despatch, marched to join
him from southern Italy, where he had been stationed against Hannibal. The two consuls destroyed
Hasdrubal’s force at the Metaurus, and Nero then returned to southern Italy. At the end of the sum-
mer, the senate recalled both consuls to Rome, but, while Livius was permitted to bring his army

123. The argument that Marcellus had left unfinished busi- crushing of the revolt of Fregellae in 125, cannot be
ness in Sicily also figures in Plutarch’s report (καὶ explained in this way: see below, at n. 181. See further
πράξεις τινὲς ὑπολιπεὶς ἦσαν ἔτι περὶ Σικελίαν). Dart and Vervaet, in this volume.’
124. Val. Max. 2.8.4: “summa diligentia obseruandi iuris, quo 126. This triumph is omitted by Livy, but attested by the Ar-
cautum erat ut pro aucto imperio, non pro recuperatis retium copy of Fabius’ elogium in the Forum of Augu-
quae populi Romani fuissent, triumphus decerneretur”. stus (Degrassi 1937, no. 80) and by Plutarch (Fab. 23.2,
So also Amm. Marc. 25.9.10, perhaps following Valerius 29.1). There is no reason to doubt its authenticity (pace
Maximus. Clark 2014, 82).
125. The other case adduced by Valerius Maximus, Opimius’

home, Nero was instructed to leave his to face Hannibal. Livy (28.9.7-10) tells us that, when they
arrived at Rome, they jointly requested triumphs for their victory and these were approved by the
senate, but then, rather than holding separate triumphs, the consuls agreed between themselves to
hold a single ceremony in which Livius rode on a chariot followed by his soldiers and Nero rode
on a horse without soldiers. Livy explains that they made this distinction “because the success had
been achieved in M. Livius’ province and on the day on which the battle was fought it was he who
happened to hold the auspices, and Livius’ army had been withdrawn and come to Rome, but Nero’s
could not be withdrawn from his province” [“quoniam et in prouincia M. Liui res gesta esset et eo
die quo pugnatum foret eius forte auspicium fuisset et exercitus Liuianus deductus Romam uenis-
set, Neronis deduci de prouincia non potuisset”].127
There is no reason to doubt Livy’s claim that the senate authorized Nero as well as Livius to hold
a full triumph and it was the consuls who, by mutual agreement, opted for a shared celebration in
which Nero played a reduced role. The senators had evidently not felt that Nero’s circumstances
presented any obstacle to his being accorded a full triumph.128 They had thus acknowledged that
in this case at least the army’s absence constituted no impediment. Nero’s situation was certainly
very different from Marcellus’. Although Nero’s soldiers were absent, those of Livius were at hand as
witnesses to their shared victory, and, whereas Marcellus had been obliged to leave his army behind
because he had not completed the war in Sicily, Livius and Nero had destroyed Hasdrubal’s army,
and Nero had not brought his army home only because it was needed at the other end of Italy against
We cannot say how Nero’s celebration will have been reported in the lost entry in the Capitoline list.
The De viris illustribus (48.5) tells us that he entered the city ouans. The Capitoline list may have said
the same, or alternatively employed a more distinctive formulation.129 For convenience I have counted
this as an ovation in Tables 3 and 6 (no. 161). However, Nero’s riding on horseback distinguished his
entry into the city from the usual practice in an ovation, when the commander marched on foot.130
The next attested applicant for a triumph was the young P. Cornelius Scipio, the future Africanus.
In 210, he had been assigned to the command in Spain as a proconsul by special election by the pop-
ular assembly. The appointment was a brilliant success: Scipio won a series of victories and drove
the Carthaginians from Spain. When reporting his achievements to the senate on his return in 206,
he requested a triumph, but was refused. As Livy puts it: “for these successes the hope of a triumph
was rather attempted than pertinaciously sought, because it was agreed that no one until that day
had triumphed who had commanded without a magistracy” [28.38.4: “ob has res gestas magis temp-
tata est triumphi spes quam petita pertinaciter, quia neminem ad eam diem triumphasse qui sine
magistratu res gessisset constabat”].131 As with Marcellus five years before, there could be no dispute
that Scipio’s achievements deserved a full triumph, but he was denied it because his circumstances
did not match the customary expectations for a triumph. In this case the issue was that only those
who were commanding as magistrates or prorogued from a magistracy were deemed to be eligible
to triumph. As we shall see, the senate was to maintain this principle until forced to abandon it by
Pompey in 81/80.

127. Cf. Val. Max. 4.1.9 (probably from Livy, but represent- agreement over whether commanders in ovation went
ing Nero as taking the initiative in renouncing a chariot on foot or on horseback reported by Gell. 5.6.27: see
triumph). For discussions of this case see Richardson Humphrey and Reinhold 1984; below, at n. 209.
1975, 55; Pittenger 2008, 68-71; Vervaet 2014, 100-103. 131. That Scipio was refused a triumph because he had com-
128. Contra Mommsen 1887, 127-129, who supposed that manded without a magistracy is also asserted by Val.
Nero was awarded only an ovation because he had not Max. 2.8.5 and Cassius Dio fr. 57.56. App. Hisp. 38.156
held the auspices on the day of the battle and had not wrongly claims that Scipio held a triumph. When Po-
brought back his army. lybius described Scipio as ‘taking back to his father-
129. Bastien 2007, 78, must be wrong to suppose that the list land a splendid triumph and splendid victory’ (11.33.7:
omitted Nero’s celebration altogether. κάλλιστον θρίαμβον καὶ καλλίστην νίκην τῇ πατρίδι
130. Ovations on foot: Dion. Hal. 5.47.3, 8.67.10, 9.36.3, κατάγων), he was using the word metaphorically and
9.37.4; Plut. Marc. 22.2, Crass. 11.11. Caesar, Antony did not mean to imply that a triumph was actually cel-
and Octavian held their ceremonial ovations on horse- ebrated (so rightly Richardson 1975, 52; F.W. Walbank
back, and this may have given rise to the scholarly dis- and C. Habicht, ad loc., in the revised Loeb edition).

Our sources do not tell us why a magistracy was felt to be essential for a triumph. The only
explanation we are given in relation to this and later cases is that there had been no instance of
anyone triumphing without a magistracy. However, the lack of a precedent is not sufficient expla-
nation, since it had not, for example, prevented the first proconsul from triumphing. The answer
may perhaps be that those who had not departed from Rome as a magistrate would not have been
able to take a departure vow. Magistrates setting off for commands took a vow on the Capitol before
departing which those who triumphed fulfilled when they returned to the Capitol at the culmination
of the ceremony.132 Since they will not have held imperium and auspicium within the city, private
citizens appointed to special commands will not have been able to take this vow before crossing the
pomerium for their commands, and so had no vow to fulfil by holding a triumph.
If Scipio had wished to press for it, he could perhaps have secured an ovation, as some of his
successors in Spain with commands of the same kind were to do. However, he had characteristically
devised his own distinctive substitute for both the departure vow and the triumph which would have
fulfilled it: in accordance with vows he had made in Spain, he sacrificed a hundred white oxen to Ju-
piter on the Capitol and the next year held games.133 In any case, his ambitions were now set higher
still: he secured the consulate for 205 and the chance to take the war to Africa; there he achieved the
defeat of Hannibal and Carthage, and returned in 201 to the triumph which marked the end of the
war (no. 162).

10. Triumphs, 200-166 BC

As was shown in Section 3 above and the accompanying Tables 2-5, the triumphal record for the
years 200-166 was in various respects highly exceptional. 41 triumphs of all types were held in this
period, achieving an average of 1.17 per year, even higher than in the early third century and never
subsequently matched except under the dictator Caesar and the triumvirs. However, whereas all the
early third century triumphs (except probably for Curius Dentatus’ ovation) were held by consuls
in or following their magistracy, consulars accounted for only 21 (51%) of the early second century
celebrations, and the triumphal rate attained by consulars in this period (0.6 per year) was around
the same as at other periods in the middle and later Republic. Moreover, the twenty triumphs held
by non-consulars in these years included a high proportion of non-standard celebrations: seven ova-
tions, all from Spain, three naval triumphs, and one Alban Mount triumph.
The principal reason for these exceptional features in the triumphal record was the nature of the
Romans’ warfare and military commitments at this period. Whereas the Second Punic War had been
a single protracted conflict fought in many theatres, the Romans now found themselves fighting
numerous, relatively short and mostly successful wars against a range of enemies. As a result, oppor-
tunities to triumph, which had been reduced during the great struggle with Carthage, now became
much more readily available. However, consulars on their own could not meet all the important
military requirements, and thus praetorian commanders (whose sole previous triumphs were Curius
Dentatus’ ovation and Valerius Falto’s naval triumph) now came to be employed in ways which gave
them opportunities to win triumphs in Spain and in the east. In addition, the senate’s policy on the
award of triumphs became somewhat less strict than during the Hannibalic War. Relatively minor
successes now earned triumphs again, as in pre-Hannibalic War times. The evolution of policy in
respect of triumphal customary expectations led to some concessions, and ovations came to be fre-
quently used as a compromise solution for holders of Spanish commands.

132. The departure vow and its fulfilment: above, n. 84. For shorst 2005, 163, Bastien 2007, 275-276. The sources’
other attempts to explain the prohibition on triumphs silence shows that Scipio did not celebrate an Alban
sine magistratu see Versnel 1970, 188-189, 350-351. Mount triumph or ovation (contra Degrassi 1947, 551;
133. Livy 28.38.8, 38.14, 45.12; Cass. Dio fr. 57.56; cf. Itgen- Broughton 1951, 299).

The period saw much fighting in northern Italy against the Gauls of the Po Valley and the Ligu-
rians, with the overall aim of bringing them under Roman control. This was achieved against the
Gauls by 191, but fighting continued sporadically against Ligurian peoples for the rest of the period.
At least one consul was deployed in the region in every year except 189 (when both consuls were sent
east, Manlius Vulso to Asia and Fulvius Nobilior to Greece), and in most years both consuls were
assigned there. Thirteen consuls won triumphs from this region during the period, all returning
for their triumphs during their year of office except for three triumphs in 181-180 (nos. 185-187).
Praetors were normally only deployed to the region when consuls were sent elsewhere, and L. Furius
Purpureo (discussed below) was the only one of these to win a triumph.134
The remaining wars of the period were fought overseas. Magistrates given these assignments did
not return within their year of office, and thus, when triumphing, did so as proconsuls or propraetors.
The major wars were against eastern kings: Philip V of Macedon (200-196), the Seleucid Antiochus III
(191-188), and Philip’s son Perseus (171-168). The commands in these wars were naturally entrusted to
consuls, and new consuls were sent to take over every year except for the command against Philip from
198, when Flamininus succeeded in getting prorogued to finish the war. In the wars against Philip and
Perseus, the eventual victors, Flamininus and Paullus, were the only consular commanders to win tri-
umphs, but the war with Antiochus and his allies yielded four consular triumphs, for Glabrio and L. Sci-
pio for defeating Antiochus in respectively Greece and Asia (nos. 175, 177), and (after some controversy)
for Fulvius Nobilior against the Aetolians (no. 179) and Manlius Vulso against the Galatians (no. 180).
For the eastern wars the Romans deployed a fleet as well as an army. In the war with Philip the
fleet was commanded by legati responsible to the consuls. However, in the next two wars, although
the consuls remained responsible for the overall conduct of the war, a separate command was creat-
ed for the fleet under a praetor, with a new praetor being sent out each year to take over. This created
an opportunity for naval triumphs, and three such triumphs were won, by L. Aemilius Regillus and
Q. Fabius Labeo against Antiochus (nos. 176, 178) and by Cn. Octavius against Perseus (no. 200). In
addition, a second praetor, L. Anicius Gallus, was sent out in 168 against Perseus’ ally, the Illyrian
king Gentius, and he too won a triumph (no. 201).135 These former praetors were the only ones in the
period to be awarded triumphs by the senate when commanding with their imperium still praetori-
an, rather than enhanced to consular.
Sicily was decreed annually as a province for praetors in this period, but saw no fighting. Sardinia
was also decreed as a province for praetors (who also had responsibility for Corsica) in most years,
though its governors were sometimes prorogued for an additional year, when special circumstances
required the deployment of a praetor elsewhere. An uprising by mountain tribes in 178 led to the
despatch of the consul Ti. Sempronius Gracchus to Sardinia in 177; after a two-year campaign of
pacification, he returned to a triumph (no. 190).136 Unrest in Corsica led to campaigning there by
praetorian governors in 181 and 174-173.137 C. Cicereius, a former scribe, held an Alban Mount
triumph on his return in 172 after being refused by the senate (no. 198). Since, according to Livy, he
had killed 7000 enemy and exacted 200,000 pounds of wax from them, it at first sight seems surpris-
ing that his triumph was refused. However, this total is comparatively low by the inflated standards
of casualty figures reported by Livy from his Roman sources, and the senate may in any case have
been reluctant to treat a praetorian command in this region as a plausible source of achievements
worthy of a triumph, particularly for a man of his lowly origins.138

134. On praetorian commands in northern Italy in this 137. Livy 40.19.6-8, 34.12-13; 41.21.2; 42.1.3, 7.1-2.
period see Brennan 2000, 197-202. 138. Livy 42.21.6-7; Degrassi 1947, 556; Brennan 1996, 327-
135. On these commands see Brennan 2000, 207-215; on the 328. On commands in Sicily and Sardinia in this period
naval triumphs see Dart and Vervaet 2011, 273-275. As see Brennan 2000, 144-150; on Roman warfare in Sar-
Brennan (2000, 211) observes, the fleet commanders, dinia and Corsica, Dyson 1985, 237-269. The lowest
“although they were tactically subordinate to the consul enemy casualty figure given from a Roman source in
…, fought under their own auspices and with their own Livy’s later books for fighting which was followed by a
imperium”. triumph or ovation is 12,000: 33.44.4, for Q. Minucius
136. Livy 41.6.5-7, 8.2-5, 9.8, 12.5-6, 15.6, 17.1-4, 28.8-9; De- Thermus (no. 170); 34.10.2, for M. Helvius (no. 169);
grassi 1947, 555. 39.21.9, for L. Manlius Acidinus (no. 181).

In Spain from Scipio’s departure in 206 two commanders were deployed, initially appointed on
the same basis as Scipio, by a special grant of proconsular imperium to a private citizen. This con-
tinued until 197 when the position was regularized by increasing the number of praetors elected
annually to six to provide commanders for Spain, and the first praetors sent out were instructed to
fix the boundaries of their provinces, Hispania Citerior and Ulterior. In recognition of the significant
military responsibility presented by the Spanish provinces, the praetors assigned to them were, like
the priuati with special commands whom they replaced, given consular imperium, symbolized by
holding twelve fasces rather than the praetor’s six (although they were often allocated just a prae-
tor’s one-legion army rather than a consul’s two legions). In many years it was found convenient to
prorogue their appointment for an extra year. Heavy warfare continued in the Spanish provinces for
much of the early second century, extending Roman control in Spain far into the interior, most deci-
sively through the settlements with the Celtiberi and Lusitani imposed by Ti. Sempronius Gracchus
and L. Postumius Albinus in 179/178. Only once was a consul deployed to Spain, namely Cato in 195
to Citerior. For the rest of the period the praetorian proconsuls were allowed to fight the wars, which
accordingly provided the chief opportunity for praetorian triumphs. 139
Over this period Spain yielded full triumphs for Cato (in 194) and for seven praetorian command-
ers (in 195, 184 [two], 180, 178 [two], 175), and seven ovations (in 200, 196, 195, 191, 185, 182, 174).
Thus, while the senate showed itself ready to reward the non-consular commanders who won so
many victories in Spain in these years, it made extensive use of the recently revived institution of the
ovation to discriminate between them.
The fact that until 197 the commanders in Spain had been appointed by special grants of imperium
rather than from a magistracy meant that they faced the same customary obstacle which had prevent-
ed Scipio from triumphing in 206. Thus, Livy tells us, that, when L. Cornelius Lentulus on his return
in 200 requested a triumph, “the senate determined that, although his achievements were worthy of a
triumph, no precedent had been received from the ancestors for someone who had not commanded
as either a dictator, a consul, or a praetor holding a triumph; he had been assigned Spain as his prov-
ince as a proconsul, not as a consul or praetor; the conclusion was, however, reached that he should
enter the city in ovation”.140 Thus, although Lentulus too was denied a full triumph, he was, unlike
Scipio, allowed, as a compromise solution, to hold an ovation (no. 163). Thus the use of the ovation
as a means of rewarding a commander whose achievements merited a triumph but whose circum-
stances did not meet the customary requirements, which had been pioneered for Marcellus, was now
deployed again for Lentulus. It is possible that this concession was granted to Lentulus because he
provoked less jealousy than Scipio,141 but alternatively the explanation may be that Scipio had made
it clear that he did not want this lesser honour. Lentulus’ ovation was not uncontroversial: a tribune
imposed his veto on the grounds that this too contravened ancestral practice, but was persuaded to
withdraw by the senatorial consensus.142 His objection was not unreasonable: if, as suggested above,
the difficulty was that a non-magistrate could not make a departure vow to be fulfilled on the Capitol
at his return, it applied as much to an ovation as to a full triumph.143
The issue continued to prove problematic when further commanders holding special grants of
imperium returned from Spain. The senate awarded L. Manlius Acidinus an ovation in 199, but a
tribune prevented him from carrying it out.144 In 196 Cn. Cornelius Blasio held an ovation (no. 168),
but L. Stertinius contented himself with setting up two arches.145 Thereafter the replacement of com-
manders of this type by praetors removed the difficulty, until Pompey revived it.

139. On these Spanish commands see especially Richardson tamen eo ut ouans urbem iniret”.
1986, 64-109; Brennan 2000, 159-173; Vervaet and Ñaco 141. So Gruen 1995, 130; Pittenger 2008, 60.
del Hoyo 2007, 26-36. 142. Livy 31.20.5-6.
140. Livy 31.20.3-5: “res triumpho dignas esse censebat se- 143. Ovations, like triumphs, culminated on the Capitol: Cic.
natus, sed exemplum a maioribus non accepisse ut qui De or. 2.195; Suet. Claud. 24.3; Rohde 1942, 1898.
neque dictator neque consul nec praetor res gessisset 144. Livy 32.7.4.
triumpharet: pro consule illum Hispaniam prouinciam, 145. Livy 33.27.3-4.
non consulem aut praetorem obtinuisse. decurrebatur

The year 200 saw the senate make two significant triumphal concessions: not only did they grant
Lentulus his ovation, but they also awarded a full triumph to the praetor L. Furius Purpureo in
bitterly contested circumstances. Livy’s account of this complex episode runs as follows. In the pro-
vincial arrangements for the year northern Italy was assigned to the consul C. Aurelius Cotta and to
Furius (the other consul being sent to the war with Philip). Furius was stationed at Ariminum with
just 5000 allied troops, since no trouble was expected, and Aurelius, detained at Rome, ordered his
two-legion army to assemble in Etruria (31.6.1-2, 8.5-7, 11.1). However, a Carthaginian survivor,
Hamilcar, raised the Gauls of the Po Valley in revolt, overran Placentia and threatened Cremona.
When Furius reported this, the consul’s army was sent over to him, and his own small force was
transferred to Etruria (31.10.1-11.3, 21.1). Having received the consular army, Furius advanced to
Cremona. There he won a decisive victory over the Gallic army, killing Hamilcar, and, when his des-
patch reached Rome, a three-day supplicatio was decreed (31.21.1-22.3). However, when Aurelius
arrived in Gaul and found the war over (confectum bellum), he was angry with Furius for fighting in
his absence, and sent him to Etruria. Aurelius now occupied himself with ravaging, but Furius, find-
ing nothing to do in Etruria and eager to seize his chance of a triumph, returned to Rome to claim
it (31.22.4-7). In the ensuing debate elders argued for rejecting the claim on the grounds that Furius
had fought with another’s army and had left his province from greed for a triumph, and consulars
maintained that a decision should be postponed until Aurelius returned, but the majority voted
to award the triumph on the grounds that Furius could not have been expected to delay fighting
until Aurelius arrived and had won a decisive victory in his magistracy and under his own auspices
(31.48.1-49.1). Furius then held his triumph without the captives, booty and soldiers, all of which
had remained with the consul (31.49.2-3). When Aurelius returned, he complained that Furius had
triumphed in the absence of all those who had served with him in the war, in disregard of the custom
instituted by the maiores that the officers and troops should take part in the triumph as witnesses to
the achievements being celebrated (31.49.8-10).
It cannot be assumed that Livy’s report of these events is in every respect reliable. The parallel
account of Cassius Dio is in broad agreement with Livy on the triumphal debate, but follows the
alternative version of Hamilcar’s fate, known also to Livy, in which he was captured in 197.146 Livy
may well be right that the debate over Furius’ triumph was dominated by his dispute with the con-
sul. However, it seems unlikely that the issue of the soldiers’ absence was not raised until the consul’s
return. For a commander to hold a full triumph in the absence of all those who had taken part in
the victory was unprecedented. However, the importance attached now to the winning of a decisive
victory had already been foreshadowed in the cases of Marcellus and Claudius Nero, as reported
by Livy. In permitting Furius to hold a full triumph, the senate was conceding the principle that a
commander might triumph without his army providing he had won a victory which put a decisive
end to the enemy’s resistance.147
In the following years further commanders held full triumphs without their soldiers, each time
after winning a decisive victory. In 195 Q. Minucius Thermus triumphed after such a victory in
Hispania Citerior,although he had handed his troops on to his successor, and the issue was to have
continuing importance in the Spanish provinces.148 The annual turnover of commanders in the war
against Antiochus and his allies brought it to the fore there too, since each was required to hand over

146. Cassius Dio’s version: fr. 58.5-6, 57.81; Zonar. 9.15.7-8, 71-75, 91-92, 168-180; Vervaet 2014, 107-111. Furius’
16.8. For the version in which Hamilcar was captured in right to triumph as a praetor was not in contention (so
197 and paraded in the triumph of C. Cornelius Cethe- rightly Brennan 2000, 198-199, contra Richardson 1975,
gus see also Livy 32.30.11, 33.23.5, and the elogia for Ce- 53).
thegus (CIL 6.31630, 40946). This source conflict does 148. Livy 33.44.4-5 (victory); 34.10.6-7 (triumph); 34.17.1
not justify rejecting Furius’ campaign as unhistorical (army handover). Livy tells us that the news of Mi-
(see Briscoe 1973, 82). nucius’ victory relieved the anxiety about the situation
147. So rightly Develin 1978, 434. Cassius Dio (fr. 58.6) in- in the province which had led to the despatch of the
cludes the detail that, after Furius’ victory, the enemy consul Cato (34.43.2, 44.5), and news of further fighting
sent envoys asking for peace. For other discussions of there may not have reached Rome by the time the tri-
this episode see Brennan 2000, 197-200; Pittenger 2008, umph was awarded.

his forces to his successor. Thus Glabrio, following the victory at Thermopylae by which he drove
Antiochus from Greece and subsequent successes which led the Aetolians to sue for peace, held a tri-
umph in 190, in which, as Livy puts it, “only the soldiers to follow the chariot were lacking; in other
respects the triumph was magnificent both in the spectacle and in the fame of the deeds”.149 Similar-
ly L. Scipio can have had few, if any, troops and Aemilius Regillus sailors at their triumphs in 189.150
As we have seen, the senate showed itself ready in this period to reward the successes won by
the praetorian proconsuls in Spain, twelve of whom were granted triumphs between 195 and 174.
However, only seven of these got full triumphs, with the other five being restricted to ovations. Livy
provides explanations for two of these ovations, the first being that of M. Helvius in 195 (no. 169).
Livy (34.10.1-5) tells us that Helvius won his victory on the way home from his province after a long
illness, with an escort force provided by a successor, and that he was denied a full triumph because
he had fought “under another’s auspices and in another’s province” [“alieno auspicio et in aliena
prouincia”]. This notice presents complex problems which need not concern us here.151 There was,
at any rate, no suggestion that Helvius’ deeds were not sufficient to merit a triumph: the objection
turned just on the independence of his command.
Livy’s second explanation relates to the ovation of L. Manlius Acidinus Fulvianus, governor of
Hispania Citerior from 188-186 (no. 181). Under the year 186, Livy (39.21.6-10) reports that Manlius
won a victory over the Celtiberi, and that, “if the arrival of his successor had not prevented him fol-
lowing it up, they would have been subjugated” [“nisi successor aduentu suo inhibuisset imperium
uictoris, subacti Celtiberi forent”]. Then, under 185, Livy reports the award of an ovation to Manlius
as follows (39.29.4-5):

L. Manlius proconsul ex Hispania redierat; cui postulanti ab senatu in aede Bellonae triumphum rerum gestarum
magnitudo impetrabilem faciebat; exemplum obstabat, quod ita comparatum more maiorum erat, ne quis, qui
exercitum non deportasset, triumpharet, nisi perdomitam pacatamque prouinciam tradidisset successori. medius
tamen honos Manlio habitus, ut ouans urbem iniret.

The proconsul L. Manlius had returned from Spain. When he requested a triumph from the senate in the temple of
Bellona, the greatness of his achievements qualified him for a triumph. However, precedent stood in his way, since
it had been established by the custom of the ancestors that no one who had not brought their army home should
triumph, unless they had handed their province over to their successor throughly conquered and pacified. However,
Manlius was granted the intermediate honour of entering the city in ovation.

This passage recalls Livy’s earlier explanations of the awards of ovations to Marcellus in 211 and
Lentulus in 200 (26.21.3-4, 31.20.3-5). As in those cases, the decreeing of the ovation is presented
as a compromise, and here, as for Marcellus, it is described as a “middle” [“medius”] course. As for
Lentulus, the conflict is presented as between the applicant’s achievements, which were acknowl-
edged to be worthy of a triumph, and the precedent (exemplum) established by the maiores.
Richardson has interpreted the senate’s ruling in this case, as reported by Livy, as denying a full
triumph to anyone who had not brought back their army, and so contravening the practice estab-
lished from Furius Purpureo’s triumph in 200 onwards. This is to ignore the crucial conditional
clause.152 Rather than implying any inconsistency, the ruling is fully consistent with the decision
taken in Furius’ case. Furius had been allowed to triumph without his army because he had won a
decisive victory ending enemy resistance, and other triumphal awards had subsequently been made
on the same basis. Manlius was now denied a full triumph because he had not been able to press

149. Livy 37.46.6: “milites tantum qui sequerentur currum Vervaet 2014, 112-116.
defuerunt; alioqui magnificus et spectaculo et fama re- 152. Richardson 1975, 61-62. Elsewhere Richardson (1986,
rum triumphus fuit”. 108-109) cites the senate’s ruling more fully, but in-
150. Livy 37.59.6 reports donatives to his troops made by L. sists that the senate looked to its commanders only for
Scipio, but, as Briscoe 1981, 394, observes, the notice “military success, not the extension or stabilization of
may be suspect. the territory within which that success was achieved”.
151. See Richardson 1986, 181-183; Brennan 2000, 166-167; Against this interpretation see Rich 1988, 214.

home his victory to achieve complete pacification.153 Livy attributes to the maiores a principle which
had in fact only been in operation since 200, but which he had already adumbrated in his account
of Marcellus’ ovation.
Thus Helvius and Manlius Acidinus, as earlier Marcellus, Lentulus and Blasio, were awarded
ovations not because there was any doubt about their achievements, which were acknowledged to
be sufficient for a triumph, but because in some respect their circumstances did not satisfy the cus-
tomary expectations for a triumph. The same is likely to be true for the other three ovations awarded
in this period to praetorian proconsuls returning from Spain, for which Livy does not provide ex-
planations, won from Ulterior in 191 and Citerior in 182 and 174 (nos. 173, 184, 197). Any Spanish
commanders who applied for a triumph but whose deeds appeared to the senate to be insufficient
for a triumph would probably have been refused outright. While special circumstances may have
come into play in respect of some of these unexplained ovations, as for Helvius, it seems likely that
some, and perhaps all, of these awards may have been made on the same ground as for Manlius
Acidinus, namely that the commander had handed his army over to his successor and, although he
had won important victories, he was considered not to have left his province completely pacified.
Each of the Spanish provinces was garrisoned by a single legion from 196, and at some point
in the early 180s a second legion was added to each garrison. Rather than withdraw legions and
replace them with raw troops, the senate opted to strengthen them with periodic supplements. In
this situation the old expectation that a victorious commander would bring his army home for his
triumph could no longer apply, and the new principle formed an acceptable substitute: a command-
er might now be deemed eligible to triumph if by his victory he had pacified the province and so
left his successor merely the task of maintaining the peace he had established. However, by the late
180s unrest was mounting in the legions at the long terms which had been served, and emissaries
sent back in 182 by the governors of both provinces and in 180 by the governor of Citerior sought
not only supplicationes for their victories, but also permission to bring their legions home. These
requests were made in the interests of the veterans, but also supported the governors’ aspirations
to triumphs, since they were justified by claims of pacification. Opposition was, however, mounted
by the praetors designated as their successors on the grounds that it would not be safe to bring out
new, untried legions, and in each case the senate made compromise arrangements. These did not
jeopardize the commanders’ triumphal claims: all three were awarded supplicationes and, on their
return, full triumphs.154
Other indications too suggest that finishing one’s war, and thereby ending enemy resistance
and establishing peace, was gaining new prominence in triumphal claims in the early second cen-
tury.155 As we have already noted, such elements are conspicuous in Plautus’ triumphal parodies
and in L. Aemilius Regillus’ dedicatory inscription for his votive temple to the Lares Permarinae
(nn. 66‑67). In 181 and 180 we hear of a determined drive to achieve a lasting settlement in parts of
Liguria. Livy tells us that in 181 L. Aemilius Paullus secured a crushing victory and the submission
of the Ligurian Ingauni and wrote to the senate requesting a supplicatio and permission to bring his
army home, “his assignment having been completed” [“confecta prouincia”], and on his return “the
fame of his triumph was enhanced by ambassadors of the Ligurians begging for perpetual peace”
[“auxerunt eius triumphi famam legati Ligurum pacem perpetuam orantes”].156 In 180 P. Cornelius

153. So rightly Develin 1978, 434-435; cf. Mommsen 1887, 28.24.7, 28.7; 31.37.4; 37.2.5; 40.35.4; 41.12.3. At
129-130. 38.50.3, in a passage whose language echoes the tra-
154. Commanders’ requests and senate response: Livy ditional style of commanders’ claims (Briscoe 2008,
39.38.4-12; 40.35.3-36.12. On legions in Spain in the 169; above, at n. 68), Manlius Vulso is made to insist
early second century see Afzelius 1944, 34-47; Brunt on his impeccable claim to a triumph as one “who,
1971, 661-663; Knapp 1979; Cadiou 2008, 98-109. with the foes defeated, the assignment completed, had
155. Clark 2014, 96-133, reaches a similar conclusion by a brought back his army” [“qui deuictis perduellibus,
rather different route. confecta prouincia, exercitum reportasset”]. There
156. Livy 40.28.6-8, 34.9. Confecta prouincia and cognate may be anachronism in Livy’s use of prouincia here
phrases occur quite frequently in Livy’s later books (cf. Richardson 2008), but there is no reason to doubt
in victorious commanders’ claims and other similar that contemporaries would have placed comparable
contexts: see, besides the present passage, 26.21.3; stress on the ending of wars.

Cethegus and M. Baebius Tamphilus achieved the submission of the Ligurian Apuani just by their
unexpected arrival and, in order to put a definitive end to the war, deported them to Roman public
land in Samnium. For this they were voted a triumph, and Livy observes that “these were the first
of all to triumph without having waged a war” [“hi omnium primi nullo bello gesto triumpharunt”],
and that their chariot was preceded not by booty or captives but just by the victims for sacrifice, and
accordingly the soldiers could receive no donative.157 This was as remarkable a reversal of traditional
expectations as the first triumphs without soldiers, but it appears to have aroused no opposition.
Of the three commanders to gain naval triumphs in the period, L. Aemilius Regillus won a sub-
stantial victory, but Q. Fabius Labeo and Cn. Octavius achieved theirs with little fighting. Labeo’s
triumph was opposed by tribunes, whom the senate persuaded to back down, but Octavius’ went
through without opposition.158 These commanders had brought back the fleets, and in each case the
senate may have been influenced by the wish to allow the sailors to share in celebrating the conclus­
ion of the war.
By contrast with, for example, the Samnite or First Punic Wars, most commanders seeking
triumphs in this period probably claimed to have ended their enemies’ resistance, even though in
regions like northern Italy and Spain such pacification all too often proved short-lived. However, for
the great majority success in battle remained the primary ground for their claim to a triumph, and
opponents will have focused above all on impugning that claim.
From Livy we hear of only five unsuccessful applications for triumphs to the senate in this peri-
od. The consul Q. Minucius Rufus in 197 and the propraetor C. Cicereius in 172 held Alban Mount
triumphs when rejected by the senate. Cicerius’ case was discussed above. Minucius’ critics, as we
have seen (n. 70), successfully argued that his battles had been insignificant and his losses heavy,
thus ensuring the rejection of his attempt to get a triumph along with his colleague. In 193, Livy
(35.8.1-9) tells us, L. Cornelius Merula’s claim was postponed to enable the senate to hear objections
from his absent legate; this led to the failure of his claim, although we are given no further details.
Q. Minucius Thermus commanded in Liguria from his consulship in 193 until his return in 190.
Livy’s notices of his warfare include some victories, and in 190 he reports Minucius as writing to
the senate that “his assignment was completed and the whole race of the Ligurians had come into
submission” [“confectam prouinciam … et Ligurum omne nomen in deditionem uenisse”]. Howev-
er, we then hear that the senate instructed Minucius to hand his army over to the proconsul Nasica
in Gaul and on his return to Rome denied him a triumph. Livy offers no explanation, but Minucius’
opponents included Cato, who made speeches attacking him for inventing battles and misconduct to
allies.159 There are likely to have been other unsuccessful applicants unmentioned by Livy, but most
commanders without a strong claim probably did not attempt a formal application.160
Cicereius is the last commander reported to have held an Alban Mount triumph, and it is unlikely
that any more such triumphs were held under the Republic. Why this should be so we can only con-
jecture. As Brennan (1996, 328) observes, Cicereius’ low status may have reduced the attraction of
this means of circumventing the senate.161
The triumphs won by the consular commanders in the eastern wars were displays of unprecedent-
ed magnificence. Those of Flamininus and Paullus were the first for which a single day did not suf-
fice: each lasted three days. However, many of the triumphs of the period were modest affairs, while,
as we have seen, Furius Purpureo in 200 and Cethegus and Baebius in 180 processed without cap-
tives or spoils. Moreover, the high frequency of triumphs in the early second century appears to have

157. Livy 40.37.9-38.9. There is no good reason to doubt the 160. For other possible applicants see Pittenger 2008, 299-
authenticity of the triumph, contra Bastien 2007, 79-80. 307.
158. Livy 37.60.6; 38.47.5; 45.35.4-5. The only fighting re- 161. I am not attracted by Brennan’s suggestion (1996, 326-
ported for Octavius’ force is a little coastal raiding (Livy 327) that Minucius Rufus’ Alban Mount triumph in 197
44.35.8, 46.3). led the senate to be for a time more generous in grant-
159. Minucius’ warfare: Livy 35.3.1-6, 11.1-13; 21.7-11; ing triumphs. As shown above, there is no need to resort
36.38.1-4. Minucius in 190: Livy 37.2.5, 46.2. Cato’s at- to this hypothesis to account for the high frequency of
tacks: ORF4 frs. 58-63. triumphs in the early second century.

somewhat reduced their value. Cicero remarked on the many triumphs won by “those who stormed
Ligurians’ forts”.162 Plautus, after making the slave Chrysalus boast metaphorically of bringing his
army home laden with booty, has him add: “but, audience, don’t be surprised if I don’t triumph; it’s
got common – I’m not bothered”.163

11. Triumphs, 165-91 BC

The loss of Livy leaves us much less well informed on Roman warfare and triumphs after 167, and
the problem is compounded by the large lacuna in the Capitoline triumphal list between triumphs of
155 and 129. However, broad trends can be discerned. The overall frequency of triumphs in the years
165-91 was much lower than in the first third of the second century. As Table 2 showed, triumphs
occurred on average only once every two years in 165-130, increasing to two every three years for
129-91. The only triumphs in the period attested as not of the standard type are the two ovations
won for the Sicilian Slave Wars. Praetorian commanders now no longer enjoyed the triumphal
success of their early second century predecessors. Only six praetorian commanders are known to
have triumphed in 165-91.164 The Capitoline list may have recorded one or two further praetorian
triumphs in the lacuna between 155 and 129, but even this is uncertain.165 By contrast, consular
commanders’ triumphal rate recovered to 0.59 per year for the period 129-91, so matching their
early second century achievement.
As with earlier triumphal trends, these developments are the result of changes in the character of
Roman warfare and consequential adjustments to the deployment of commanders.166
The years 165-157 saw comparatively little warfare, and yielded only one triumph, in 158 against
Ligurians (no. 204). Major warfare resumed in Spain around 155 and continued with little interrup-
tion until 133, while other important wars of those years included, in 149-146, the final war against
Carthage and the crushing of uprisings in Macedonia and Greece, and, from about 139 to 132, the
first slave war in Sicily. Much of this fighting was unsuccessful, particularly in Spain and Sicily.
Thus the initial years of quiescence and the numerous defeats of the following years account for the
low triumphal rate for the mid second century. A period of wide-ranging successes ensued: fourteen
triumphs were held in the years 129-110, four of them by Metelli (with two brothers triumphing
on the same day: nos. 226, 227). The following years saw setbacks against Jugurtha and the defeats
inflicted by the Cimbri, but triumphs were eventually won against those enemies and elsewhere,
including the second Sicilian slave war and revived warfare in Spain.
Little warfare took place in this period in northern Italy, and as a result the senate commonly
sent one of the consuls overseas if there was a region where a major campaign was to be fought.
Normally, however, at least one consul was retained in Italy, and many of these spent part of their
year of office on patrol in the north.167 However, only five triumphs during the period were won from
campaigns against the mountain peoples of the region.168

162. Brut. 255: “... illi qui Ligurum castella expugnauerunt: triumphs of the period, but with undue scepticism about
ex quibus multi sunt, ut scitis, triumphi”. the reliability of the triumphal list (at pp. 148-149, 159-
163. Bacch. 1072-1073: “sed, spectatores, uos nunc ne mi- 163): the fact that the thinness of our literary sources
remini/ quod non triumpho: peruolgatum est, nil mo- for the period prevents us from supplying as many of
ror”. The boast: above, n. 67. The Bacchides is generally the entries missing in the lacuna between the years 155
agreed to be one of the later plays of Plautus, who died and 129 as for other lacunae in the Capitoline list should
c. 184. not lead us to question the historicity of those entries,
164. Nos. 207, 208, 229, 235, 236, 238. All of these were com- and the inadequacy of Appian’s account of the activity
manding pro consule. of D. Iunius Brutus in Hispania Ulterior does not justi-
165. Above, n. 28. fy doubting his triumph (no. 212), attested by Plutarch
166. For overviews of the warfare of the period see Cam- (Ti. Gracch. 21.3) and Eutropius (4.19.1) and corroborat-
bridge Ancient History2 8, 131-162 (W.V. Harris), 319- ed by other indications such as his agnomen Callaecus.
324 (P.S. Derow); 9, 16-39 (A.W. Lintott). On the com- 167. Both consuls are recorded as sent overseas only in 149,
mands see Broughton 1951, 1952; Brennan 2000. Clark 135, 134, 118, 109 and 107.
2014, 134-207, provides a stimulating discussion of the 168. In 158, 155, 143, 117, 115 (nos. 204, 205, 211, 224, 225).

As before, praetors normally provided the provincial governors, that is, for the already estab-
lished provinces of Sicily, Sardinia with Corsica, and Hispania Citerior and Ulterior, and for Africa
and Macedonia (regularly decreed as provinces from 146), for Asia (established as a province fol-
lowing the bequest of the Pergamene kingdom and the crushing of the ensuing revolt in 133-126),
and, probably from the end of the second century, for Transalpine Gaul and Cilicia.169 However, the
greater availability of consuls for overseas service meant that, when serious fighting was required in
a particular province, the senate commonly despatched a consul there, and then usually prorogued
them for one year or more. This was the chief factor which led to the sharp reduction in praetorians’
access to triumphs.170 During this period just four triumphs are attested for praetorian governors of
regular provinces, three from Hispania Ulterior and one from Macedonia.171 The serious mid-sec-
ond century fighting in Spain meant that consuls were deployed to Citerior in 153-151, to Ulterior
in 145, and to both provinces from 143 to 133, winning a number of triumphs (and also suffering
some humiliating defeats).172 The Spanish provinces received consular commanders again in the
90s: T. Didius was sent to Citerior in 98, and P. Licinius Crassus to Ulterior in 97, both returning after
long terms to triumph in 93 (nos. 239, 240), and C. Valerius Flaccus, sent out to the region as consul
in 93, was not to return for his triumph until 81/80 (no. 245). Consuls won triumphs from Sardinia
in 122 and 111 (nos. 219, 226), but Cicero tells us that, when the propraetor T. Albucius sought a
supplicatio for a victory won with one allied cohort over “brigands in sheepskins”, he was refused by
the senate and censured for holding a comparable celebration in his province.173 In Sicily, after prae-
torian governors’ defeats, consular commanders took over both slave wars. Conflict on the frontier
in Macedonia led to its assignment to consuls in 114-112 and 110; C. Porcius Cato was defeated in
114, but his three consular successors won triumphs (nos. 227, 228, 231).
Consuls were naturally assigned to the major wars against Carthage, the Achaean League, and
Jugurtha. Other wars waged in regions not regularly decreed as provinces were also normally as-
signed to consular commanders, who in this way earned triumphs from Illyricum in 155, 129, 117
(nos. 206, 215, 223), four triumphs from Transalpine Gaul in 123-120 (nos. 217, 218, 221, 222), and
triumphs from what became the province of Asia in 126 (no. 216) and the Balearic islands in 121
(no. 220).174 Only two praetorian commanders won triumphs of this kind, Metellus Macedonicus in
146, after crushing the revolt of Andriscus and thereby establishing Macedonia as a regular province
(no. 208), and M. Antonius in 100 against the Cilician pirates (no. 235).
Commanders in regular provinces will often have handed their armies over to their successors.175
The senate may have continued to observe the principle established in the early second century, that
such commanders could only be awarded a full triumph if they were deemed to have pacified their
province. However, with the decline in praetorian triumphs there was no further use of the ovation
as a reward for commanders who had won victories but returned without their army or completed
Commanders returning to triumphs from regions not regularly declared provinces will usually
have both brought their army back and been able to claim to have left the region pacified. However,
some exceptions may have occurred. M. Fulvius Flaccus may have handed his army over to C. Sex-
tius Calvinus who succeeded him in Transalpine Gaul in 123, and both triumphed against the same
enemies (nos. 217, 218).176 Q. Caecilius Metellus held a triumph in 106 on his return from Numidia

169. See further Ferrary 2008. were sent. Consuls campaigned in Corsica in 163 and
170. Cf. Rich 1993, 51-52. 162, and M. Iuventius Thalna, who died on hearing the
171. Ulterior: Mummius in 152, Caepio in 107, Dolabella in news of his supplicatio (Val. Max. 9.12.3), would pre-
98 (nos. 197, 229, 238). Macedonia: Didius (no. 236). sumably have triumphed if he had returned.
It is possible that one or two praetorian governors of 174. Other triumphs of this kind may have been recorded in
Macedonia won triumphs in the period covered by the the lacuna: above, n. 28.
lacuna in the Capitoline list (see above, n. 28). 175. Fresh armies of raw recruits being brought out to Spain
172. On these deployments see Richardson 1986, 126-137; are reported by App. Iber. 65.274, 78.334, but this was
Brennan 2000, 173-180. The number of triumphs won clearly exceptional.
is uncertain because of the lacuna (above, n. 28). 176. On these men’s triumphs and those of their successors
173. Cic. Prov. Cons. 15; cf. Pis. 92. Legions would now only Fabius Maximus Allobrogicus and Domitius Ahenobar-
have been stationed in Sardinia-Corsica when consuls bus (nos. 221, 222) see Brennan 2000, 360-362.

and celebrated his victories by assuming the agnomen Numidicus, but he had been obliged to hand
over to his successor Marius both his army and the task of ending the war by capturing Jugurtha.
The senate majority’s hostility to Marius would have trumped any reservations they may have enter-
tained about Metellus’ entitlement.177 However, the triumph may have encountered opposition in the
popular assembly on the ground of Metellus’ failure to finish the war. Gellius quotes a fragment of
a speech “on his triumph” [“de triumpho suo”] delivered by Metellus at a contio in which he attacks
an opponent who, he claims, wanted the people to inflict an injury on him.178 Metellus’ enemy may
have been seeking to persuade the assembly to reject the law granting imperium for the day of his
triumph, without which, as a proconsul, he could not hold it.
Since Ap. Claudius Pulcher was still consul when he celebrated his notorious triumph over the
Salassi in 143, he did not require such a law. When his application was rejected by the senate, he
did not trouble to seek approval from the assembly, like Flaminius and his colleague in 223, but held
his triumph without authorization, as Postumius Megellus had done in the early third century, with
his Vestal daughter riding with him to frustrate tribunician intervention. Orosius gives the losses
which Appius had sustained as the reason for the rejection (he tells us that Appius lost five thousand
in a defeat, subsequently redeemed in a victory in which he killed the same number). Cassius Dio
alleges that he had attacked the Salassi without cause out of greed for a triumph, and this claim too
may have been adduced in the senate’s debate. Political rivalries will have been an important factor
in the senate’s decision, including the forthcoming contest for the censorship, in which Appius was
defeated by Scipio Aemilianus for the patrician place.179
The other notorious rejection of the period was suffered by L. Licinius Crassus. As consul in 95,
he claimed a triumph for a success won in northern Italy, said to have been against insignificant
brigands he had sought out in his eagerness for a triumph. The senate would have given approval,
but his fellow-consul (and otherwise close associate) Q. Mucius Scaevola interposed his veto.180
Valerius Maximus claims that Q. Opimius sought a triumph for his suppression of the revolt of
Fregellae as praetor in 125, but was refused by the senate, as Fulvius Flaccus had been after his
recovery of Capua, in accordance with a rule that triumphs could only be awarded “for the increase
of empire” [“pro aucto imperio”].181 As we have seen, this alleged rule is spurious, and, whereas the
lack of a triumph for Capua could be explained by its citizen status before its rebellion, this would
not apply for Fregellae, a Latin ally. Opimius’ absence from the Capitoline list (extant at that point)
shows that he did not hold a triumph. Probably no triumph was sought, to avoid inflaming tension
with the Latins.
Ovations were deployed in this period only in response to the novel problem presented by the
slave wars in Sicily. The ending of the first war was celebrated by an ovation, probably held, as we
have seen, not by M. Perperna (as Florus reports), but by P. Rupilius, consul in 132 (no. 214).182 As
with the awards of ovations in the late third and early second century, the senate presumably held
that Rupilius’ achievements were worthy of a triumph, but the maiores had left no exemplum for a
triumph being awarded against so lowly an enemy, and an ovation would accordingly be the appro-
priate middle course. Rupilius was no doubt satisfied with this outcome.183 With the precedent thus
established, it was followed again for Aquillius in 99 after the second war (no. 237).184
It is possible that the celebration in 100 of Antonius’ victory over the Cilician pirates (no. 235) was
also an ovation. Scholars have generally deemed it a full triumph, and I have accordingly counted

177. Cf. Clark 2014, 191-194. 181. Val. Max. 2.8.4; Amm. Marc. 25.9.10; see above, at
178. Gell. 12.9.4 = ORF2 fr. 7 (“... me iniuriam ferre, uos fa- n. 124.
cere uult, Quirites”). The speech will be discussed in a 182. Above, n. 27.
forthcoming paper by Dr. Henriette van der Blom. 183. Cf. Florus 2.7.8 (of Perperna): “fuitque de seruis oua-
179. Oros. 5.4.7; Cass. Dio fr. 74 (mistakenly implying that tione contentus, ne dignitatem triumphi seruili inscrip-
Appius did not seek senatorial approval). The Vestal: tione uiolaret”.
Cic. Cael. 34; Val. Max. 5.4.6; Suet. Tib. 2.4. For discus- 184. That Aquillius’ celebration was an ovation is confirmed
sion see Astin 1967, 106-110; McDougall 1992; Urso by Cic. De orat. 2.195, where he is said “to have ascend-
2013, 59-61. Assembly vote not required: above, at n. 62. ed to the Capitol in ovation” [“ouantem in Capitolium
180. Cic. Inv. 2.111, Pis. 62; Ascon. 15 C. ascendisse”].

it as such in my tables. However, Gellius (5.6.21, cited n. 82) specifies pirates as well as slaves as
enemies regarded as worthy only of an ovation, and our only evidence for Antonius’ celebration
is Plutarch’s reference to him as “θριαμβικός” (Pomp. 24.10: “a man who had triumphed”), a term
which he could have used of an ovation as well as a triumph.185
Orosius’ account of the triumph of Appius Claudius Pulcher is one of two sources which refer to
an undated law requiring five thousand enemy to be killed for a triumph. Orosius represents this
number of enemy deaths as entitling a commander to a triumph, describing Claudius as requesting
his triumph “in accordance with the law by which it was established that anyone who slaughtered
five thousand enemy should have the power to triumph” [5.4.7: “iuxta legem qua constitutum erat
ut quisque quinque milia hostium peremisset triumphandi haberet potestatem”]. Our other source
for the law, Valerius Maximus in his chapter de iure triumphi, more plausibly reports it as setting a
minimum requirement (2.8.1):

ob leuia proelia quidam imperatores triumphos sibi decerni desiderabant. quibus ut occurreretur, lege cautum est
ne quis triumpharet nisi qui quinque milia hostium una acie cecidisset.

Certain commanders wished triumphs to be decreed to them for trivial engagements. To prevent them, it was pro-
vided by law that no one should triumph unless they had killed five thousand enemy in a single battle.

Richardson (1975, 62) interprets this law as introduced at the senate’s wish to provide a new restric-
tion on triumphs soon after 180 and in reaction to the triumphs awarded then for deporting Liguri-
ans when no war had been fought (nos. 186, 187), and holds that the substantial drop in triumphs
after the early second century was the consequence. As we have seen, that drop can be accounted
for in other ways, through the change in the pattern of Roman warfare and commands. Moreover,
this interpretation of the reported law itself poses problems. A measure introduced from dissatisfac-
tion with the senate’s decision on that occasion seems more likely to have been a tribune’s initiative
rather than the senate’s own choice.186 If strictly enforced, it cannot have been introduced before
Cn. Octavius’ naval triumph of 168, for which such slaughter could hardly have been claimed.187
Other scholars have rejected the measure as a fabrication, a view long ago propounded by Gibbon
and recently revived.188 However, it seems too well attested for this dismissal: Orosius’ statement is
no doubt garbled, but surely indicates that Livy, his usual source, made some reference to it at this
The reported law must in any case be considered together with the references in several Greek
writers to a comparable requirement for acclamations as imperator. A fragment of Diodorus (36.14,
cited by Photius) states, à propos of an unknown event c. 100 BC, that it was the custom of Roman
soldiers to hail their commander imperator when more than six thousand enemy had been killed in
battle. Cassius Dio tells us that C. Antonius was hailed imperator for his victory over Catiline in 62,
in which three thousand had been killed, “although the number of the slain was below what was
required” [37.40.2: καίτοι τοῦ ἀριθμοῦ τῶν πεφονευμένων ἐλάττονος παρὰ τὸ νενομισμένον ὄντος].
Appian, in a brief account of imperatorial acclamations, states that “in the past commanders accept-
ed this honour for all the greatest exploits, but I understand that the requirement for this distinction
is now that ten thousand should have fallen” [B Civ. 2.44.177: καὶ τήνδε τὴν τιμὴν οἱ στρατηγοὶ πάλαι
μὲν ἐπὶ πᾶσι τοῖς μεγίστοις ἔργοις προσίεντο, νῦν δ' ὅρον εἶναι τῇδε τῇ εὐφημίᾳ πυνθάνομαι τὸ

185. Greek writers regularly speak of ovations as a form of 38.36.7-9).
θρίαμβος (Rohde 1942, 1892). Posidonius (FGrHist 87 F 187. See above, at n. 157.
36, p. 245) speaks of Aquillius’ ovation as a θρίαμβος. 188. Gibbon 1796, 132-134; Itgenshorst 2005, 188; Beard
186. Two plebiscita are known to have been carried by trib- 2007, 209-210. Gibbon rightly notes that some com-
unes in the early second century without senatorial ap- manders won their triumph by a siege rather than a
proval, by Q. Terentius Culleo in 189 on freedman reg- pitched battle, for example Scipio Aemilianus for both
istration (Plut. Flam. 18.2) and by C. Valerius Tappo in his triumphs. Itgenshorst and Beard implausibly sup-
187 extending full citizenship to three municipia (Livy pose that Orosius was drawing on Valerius Maximus.

μυρίους πεσεῖν]. Appian makes this reference à propos of the acclamation of Curio in 49 for a caval-
ry skirmish. That no minimum requirement was observed for acclamations in the mid first century
BC is corroborated by Cicero’s statement in 43 (Phil. 14.12) that within the previous twenty years the
senate had confirmed acclamations and voted supplicationes to commanders who had killed one or
two thousand enemy.
In view of the vagueness and inconsistency of these various statements, it seems best to suppose
that, for both acclamations and triumphs, they reflect not a statute law, but merely informal cus-
tomary expectations, which did not receive any statutory codification until the imperial period, if
then.189 There is at any rate no sign that the senate at any point under the Republic felt itself to be
bound by a formal requirement of enemy deaths in its decisions on supplicationes and triumphs. The
senate was always opposed to awarding triumphs for insignificant successes in battle. However, in
exceptional cases in the early second century, as we have seen, the senate felt free to award triumphs
to commanders whose successes had terminated wars, but involved little or even no bloodshed, for
the Ligurian deportations in 180 and for the naval achievements of Fabius Labeo and Octavius in
188 and 168. If similar decisions were not made later, it will surely have been because comparable
circumstances had not recurred, rather than from a change of policy. In fact, one later second cen-
tury commander does seem to have held a triumph without himself being responsible for significant
bloodshed, namely M.’ Aquillius on his return from the new province of Asia in 126. The war there
had been finished by Aquillius’ predecessor M. Perperna, leaving Aquillius only the task of post-war
settlement, but Perperna’s triumph had been forestalled by his death.190

12. Triumphs in the Late Republic, 90-50 BC

The overall frequency of triumphs in the period from the outbreak of the Social War to the eve of the
civil war between Caesar and Pompey showed a decline from the preceding years to barely over one
triumph every two years, as in the mid-second century. Within the period, however, there were sharp
fluctuations. The civil war years 87-82 saw no triumphs. Triumphs then became frequent in the peri-
od of Sullan dominance, with attested celebrations averaging one per year over 81-69, and two more
would have been held but for early deaths.191 However, triumphal frequency fell sharply during the
last years of the Republic, with only six attested during 68-50, an annual rate of 0.32, comparable to
the early Republic and the Hannibalic War years. As noted above (at n. 29), one or two unattested
triumphs are likely to have been held in the years 81-62, for which there is a lacuna in the Capitoline
list, but the overall pattern remains clear.
The widespread external warfare of these years created plentiful opportunities for triumphs. In
Mithridates the Roman armies had a great eastern king as their opponent for the first time since
Perseus: his two principal victors, Sulla and Pompey, each held a two-day triumph, and the wars
against him and related conflicts also yielded triumphs for Murena, Lucullus and Metellus Creticus.
The Sertorian war in Spain and its aftermath yielded four triumphs (nos. 251, 253-255), and multi-
ple triumphs were also furnished by both Macedonia (nos. 247, 249, 250) and Cilicia (nos. 248, 261).
Some commanders will have succeeded in manufacturing occasions for triumphs, like M. Pupius
Piso (no. 255), criticized for cupiditas triumphandi by his relative L. Piso Caesoninus.192
After Sulla’s reforms, consuls and praetors only went out to their provinces at the end of their
year of office, and some took advantage of their new freedom to decline provinces.193 The senate

189. So, for acclamations, Mommsen 1887, 124; Combès Gaul (Cic. Pis. 62; Ascon. 14 C). Ap. Claudius Pulcher
1966, 80-81. (cos. 79) would surely have triumphed for his successes
190. Strabo 14.1.38; Eutrop. 4.20.2; Justin 36.4.9-10; further in Macedonia if he had not died in his province (sources
sources for their commands at Broughton 1951, 504, 509. at Broughton 1952, 89).
191. His death from an old wound denied C. Aurelius Cotta 192. Cic. Pis. 62.
(cos. 75) the triumph he had eagerly sought in Cisalpine 193. See Brennan 2000, 396-398, 400-402.

continued to decree as consular the provinces most likely to require major fighting, although the
new arrangements in combination with C. Gracchus’ law on the consular provinces normally result-
ed in a delay of a year and a half between the decreeing of consular provinces and their being taken
up. However, praetorian commanders now enjoyed significantly more success than in the previous
period, winning seven triumphs (nos. 242, 244, 252, 254, 255, 259, 260). This was largely the result
of various special circumstances: thus Murena and Afranius, former subordinates of Sulla against
Mithridates and Pompey in Spain, managed to secure triumphs when continuing in those provinc-
es;194 Spartacus provided Crassus with an ovation; and sudden outbreaks in Transalpine Gaul ena-
bled its governor Pomptinus to earn his triumph.
None of the triumphs of the period overtly celebrated civil war: Sulla triumphed over Mithridates,
and, although Pompey’s first two triumphs were won by suppressing the enemies of the Sullan cause
in Africa and Spain, they were represented as just “from Africa” and “from Spain” and justified by
the presence on the opposing sides of the Numidian king Hiarbas and numerous Spanish provin-
cials.195 However, the civil war conditions had an important consequence for triumphal practice.
Pompey, as Cicero put it, “completed a very great war in Africa, and brought back his victorious
army” [Leg. Man. 61: “bellum in Africa maximum confecit, uictorem exercitum deportauit”]. How-
ever, as Plutarch tells us (Pomp. 13.1-4), he returned in defiance of Sulla’s orders, and his claim to a
full triumph for a command which he had held as a mere eques contravened the principle that such
a triumph could be awarded only to those commanding in or by prorogation from a magistracy,
which had been so firmly established in respect of the Spanish commands held by Scipio and his
successors in the late third and early second century. Sulla sought to maintain the rule against him,
asserting, according to Plutarch, that “the law grants a triumph only to a consul or praetor and to no
one else” [Pomp. 14.1: ὑπάτῳ γὰρ ἤ στρατηγῷ μόνον, ἄλλῳ δ'οὐδενὶ δίδωσιν ὁ νόμος], but Pompey
insisted on having his way.196 Having set the precedent, he repeated it in 71, achieving the extraor-
dinary feat of triumphing for the second time while still an eques, and entering office as consul the
following day.197 At the same time Crassus, after his defeat of Spartacus, was able to secure a more
modest departure from tradition, accepting the ovation which was now the established reward for
victory in a slave war, but successfully pressing the senate to permit him a laurel rather than the
usual myrtle crown.198
Pompey had his army with him for his first two triumphs, but at his third in 61, again won from
a special command rather than a magistrate’s prouincia, he was followed only by his officers, since,
to allay fears, he had discharged his army on arrival in Italy.199 It had long been common for a
commander to triumph without his army because it had been handed over to his successor, but it
remained customary for those who brought their troops home to be followed by them in their tri-
umph. Contemporary comment on Pompey’s departure from this practice may perhaps be reflected
in Cassius Dio’s statement that the triumph was voted to him “although it was not permitted by strict
ancestral custom for it to be held without those who shared in winning the victory” [37.21.1: καίπερ
οὐχ ὅσιον ὂν ἔκ τῶν πάνυ πατρίων ἄνευ τῶν συννικησάντων τινὶ πεμφθῆναι]. However, Pompey’s
action was not unprecedented: Metellus Pius, on return from his command against Sertorius in 71,
had discharged his army as soon as he had crossed the Alps, and so will have had no troops in his

194. Cf. Brennan 2000, 515, 556. 198. Cic. Pis. 58; Pliny, NH 15.125; Gell. 5.6.23. Crassus seek-
195. See further Lange 2013, 73-75, and Havener, in this ing only an ovation: Plut. Crass. 11.11.
volume. 199. Pompey followed only by officers: App. Mithr. 117.578.
196. See further Lundgreen 2011, 233-236; Vervaet, in this The soldiers had received their donatives (normally
volume. paid at a triumph) before departure from Asia: App.
197. Vell. 2.30.2 gives the date. Extraordinary feat: see es- Mithr. 116.565; cf. Plut. Pomp. 45.5. Plutarch (Pomp.
pecially Cic. Leg. Man. 62 “quid tam incredibile quam 43.3) claims that, when dismissing his soldiers, Pom-
ut iterum eques Romanus ex senatus consulto trium- pey ordered them to reassemble for his triumph, but,
pharet?” [“what is as incredible as that a Roman knight if issued, this instruction seems not to have been im-
should for the second time triumph by the senate’s de- plemented (so rightly Drumann & Groebe 1910, 492).
cree?”]. Cass. Dio 36.25.3 makes Pompey acknowledge Cf. Vell. 2.40.3 (“dimisso exercitu nihil praeter nomen
that the triumph was “contrary to custom” [παρὰ τὸ imperatoris retinens cum priuato comitatu”).

triumph.200 Metellus had presumably taken this step because Pompey had used waiting for him as a
pretext for delaying his own triumph and so retaining his army.201
Others found their triumphal prospects hampered by the political turbulence of the late Repub-
lic. Lucullus, Metellus Creticus, and Q. Marcius Rex all returned from eastern commands in 66,
and were awarded triumphs by the senate, but prevented from holding them by tribunes opposing
the required law granting them imperium for the day of their entry into the city. Lucullus eventu-
ally succeeded in holding his triumph in 63, and Metellus in 62, but Marcius died first. All three
commanders had been replaced by or otherwise clashed with Pompey, and the tribunes appear to
have been acting on his behalf, or at least seeking his favour.202 Later, C. Pomptinus, Caesar’s pre-
decessor in Transalpine Gaul, encountered similar obstruction from Caesar’s friends: they objected
unsuccessfully to his supplicatio, and prevented him from holding his triumph until 54 (the first
since Pompey’s in 61). Even then the law granting him imperium was only carried by sharp practice,
leading to constitutionalist opposition to the triumph from Cato and his associates.203 P. Cornelius
Lentulus Spinther returned from Cilicia in 53, but did not triumph until late 51: although we hear
no details, he too must have faced obstruction.204
As Brennan has observed, the prospect of such obstruction is likely to have deterred some from
pursuing triumphal claims, and Caesar, who abandoned his praetorian triumph to stand for the
consulship, is only the best known of a striking number of commanders in these years who received
imperatorial salutations without proceeding to triumphs.205 At least one of these, L. Calpurnius Piso
Caesoninus, declared that he did not desire a triumph, incurring Cicero’s mockery (Pis. 56-63, 97).
Thus the sharp drop in the number of triumphs in the 60s and 50s can be at least in part ascribed
to the anarchic political conditions of the period, in which many of those who sought triumphs faced
obstruction and others opted not to lodge a claim. Another factor will have been the increasing mo-
nopolization of major commands by the likes of Pompey and Caesar. At the end of the period, the
triumphal aspirations of Cicero and Bibulus were thwarted by the advent of civil war.

13. Triumphs from Caesar to Augustus, 49 to 19 BC

After the trough of the last years of the Republic, triumphal frequency rebounded under the dicta-
torship of Caesar and the ensuing triumviral years to a level not seen since the previous peak of the
early second century: over the years 49 to 19, triumphs occurred at a rate of 1.19 per year.
A substantial share of this glut of triumphs was taken by the celebrations held by the dynasts them-
selves: between them, Caesar, Antony and Octavian held twelve full triumphs or ovations. Caesar’s
accumulated victories were celebrated by four separate triumphs, all held in August 46, and he held a

200. Sall. Hist. 4.49: “exercitum dimisit, ut primum Alpis di- 203. The supplicatio: Schol. Bob. 149-150 Stangl. Cic. Pis. 58
gressus est”; cf. Cass. Dio 52.13.2, 56.39.2, with Crook reports Pomptinus as being prevented from triumphing
1948. religionibus susceptis. The carrying of the law and the
201. Pompey’s use of this pretext is attested by App. B Civ. subsequent opposition: Cic. Att. 4.18.4, QF 3.4.6; Cass.
1.121.561. Dio 39.65.
202. Opposition to Lucullus’ triumph: Cic. Acad. 2.3; Plut. 204. Cic. Att. 5.21.4; Degrassi 1947, 566; Broughton 1952,
Luc. 37.1-3, Cato Min. 29.5-8. Opposition to Metellus 229, 242.
and Marcius: Sall. Cat. 30.4. Marcius’ death (by May 205. Combès 1966, 455-456; Brennan 2000, 532-535, 865-
61): Cic. Att. 1.16.10. Plutarch tells us that the opposit­ 866. On Caesar see Osgood, in this volume. The oth-
ion to Lucullus was initiated by the tribune C. Mem- er commanders, besides those mentioned above, who
mius, who, seeking to win Pompey’s favour, alleged em- are known to have received imperatorial salutations
bezzlement against Lucullus, attacked him for dragging in the 60s and 50s but did not triumph, are L. Man-
the war out, and so persuaded the assembly to reject lius Torquatus, C. Antonius Hibrida and C. Octavius
the law. Memmius’ speech is cited by Serv. Aen. 1.161, (in Macedonia), C. Memmius (in Bithynia), A. Gabini-
4.261. According to Plutarch (Luc. 36.4), Pompey left us (in Syria), and Ap. Claudius Pulcher (in Cilicia).
Lucullus only 1600 troops to share his triumph; Lucul- Octavius died on his way home; Antonius and Gabini-
lus presumably discharged them because of the delay, us were disgraced in the courts; Pulcher abandoned his
but they were summoned back in 63 to take part in the claim to a triumph to frustrate a prosecutor (Cic. Fam.
ceremony (Cic. Mur. 37, 69). For the requirement of the 8.6.1); nothing is known about the cases of Manlius
law conferring imperium see above, at n. 61. and Memmius.

fifth in October 45 for his final victory in Spain (nos. 263-267). Octavian celebrated his victories with
an ovation on 13 November 36 and three successive triumphs on 13-15 August 29 (nos. 281, 288-290).
Several of these victories were in fact won in civil war, but all were cloaked as against foreign enemies,
except for Caesar’s defeat of Pompey’s sons in Spain, for which no such pretext was available. Octavian
portrayed his war against Sex. Pompeius as a slave war and so meriting only the ovation which had
now long been customary against such a foe, and his victories at Actium and Alexandria as won in
defence of the fatherland against a foreign queen and the traitors who had sided with her. 206
In addition to these celebrations of their victories, the dynasts held three ceremonial ovations with-
out preceding wars. On 26 January 44 Caesar entered Rome in ovation on his return from celebrating
the Latin Festival on the Alban Mount as consul: the entry in the Capitoline list records him as ouans
ex monte Albano (no. 270). According to Cassius Dio, he had been given such a right in perpetuity, but
he only lived to carry it out this time. In 40, following their agreement not to go to war against each
other at Brundisium, Antony and Octavian entered the city in ovation (nos. 275, 276). The entries for
each in the Capitoline and Barberini lists state the explanation as “because he made peace” with the
other [“quod pacem cum M. Antonio fecit/ quod pacem cum Imp. Caesare fecit”].207 These novel cere-
monies evidently reflect the doctrine that ovations had in early times been held for bloodless victories.
As we have seen, this conception is likely to have had no historical foundation. However, although
known to us only from imperial sources, it will have been propounded by late Republican scholars,
very likely Varro in his Antiquitates.208 Famous celebrations from the Hannibalic War will also have
served as models. In entering in ovation from the Alban Mount, Caesar was following the example of
Marcellus in 211. Caesar rode on horseback rather than processing on foot, as C. Claudius Nero had
done in 207, and this precedent was followed by Antony and Octavian in their ovations.209
The dynasts’ associates also had rich opportunities for triumphs: in the years 47-26, no fewer than
23 commanders triumphed as proconsuls (or sometimes as consuls, but from proconsular com-
mands). Many of these celebrations will have followed quite modest successes. Although nominally
approved by the senate, these triumphs were effectively in the gift of the dynasts, who thus dispensed
them as patronage.
Caesar gave triumphs to Lepidus in 47 and to Fabius Maximus and Pedius in 45 (nos. 262, 268,
269). The latter two grants were particularly scandalous, since both men had merely served as his
legati in Spain, and Caesar thus disregarded the fundamental principle that only those who com-
manded under their own imperium and auspices could triumph.210
Fourteen adherents of Octavian or Antony received triumphs in 43-33 (nos. 271-274, 277-280, 282-
287), and, after his victory over Antony, Octavian-Augustus permitted a further six commanders to
triumph in 28-26 (nos. 291-296). This lavish provision enabled Suetonius to declare that Augustus was
“not sparing in honouring excellence in war”, although his claim that over his lifetime Augustus had
triumphs decreed to over thirty commanders involves some exaggeration.211 The Lex Titia which es-
tablished the triumvirate divided the provinces between the triumvirs, and the provincial commanders
were thus all their appointees. However, formally they commanded as proconsuls, with their own impe-
rium and under their own auspices, and so complied with the traditional requirement for a triumph.212

206. Lange 2013, 76-78, 81-84; Havener and Östenberg, in as consul (he had assumed the office by the time of his
this volume. The war with Sex. Pompeius officially triumph).
a slave war: RGDA 25.1, 27.3. For the possibility that 211. Suet. Aug. 38.1: “nec parcior in bellica uirtute honoran-
Octavian’s second triumph was officially classified as da, super triginta ducibus iustos triumphos et aliquanto
naval see Dart and Vervaet 2011, 279-280. pluribus triumphalia ornamenta decernenda curauit”.
207. Degrassi 1947, 567-568; Cass. Dio 44.4.3, 48.31.3. On The calculation of triumphs covers the 22 triumphs
these ovations see Weinstock 1971, 326-331; Sumi 2005, held by senatorial commanders in 43-19 BC, the three
65-69, 196; Smith 2012, 275-278; Lange, in this volume. triumphs declined by Agrippa (Cass. Dio 48.49.3; 54.11.6,
208. For the doctrine see Gell. 5.6.21; Paul. Fest. 213 L; Pliny, 24.7), the ovation and two triumphs held by Tiberius, and
NH 15.125; Dion. Hal. 9.36; above, at nn. 82, 92. the ovation decreed for Drusus, but preempted by his
209. Humphrey & Reinhold 1984; above, n. 130. death, a total of 29. Augustus is also credited with gener-
210. Cass. Dio 43.42.1. For Fabius and Pedius as Caesar’s osity in the award of triumphs by Cassius Dio 54.12.2.
legati see Bell. Hisp. 2.2; Cass. Dio 43.31.1. In the Capi- 212. In the Capitoline list these commanders’ status is giv-
toline list Pedius is recorded as proconsul, and Fabius en as proconsul, except for L. Antonius (no. 274) and

Octavian in 28-27 enacted the settlement by which he claimed to have returned the res publica
to the control of the Roman senate and people and in fact ensured the continuance of his rule, re-
ceiving in return honours including his new name Augustus. A central element of this settlement
was a new arrangement for the provinces and the appointment of their commanders. The control
of the provinces and armies and the right to appoint their commanders which had been vested in
the triumvirs had, with the ousting of his colleagues, devolved wholly to him. To retain this would
have been incompatible with his claim to have handed back the res publica, but to divest himself of
it altogether at this point would have meant the abandonment of his power. Octavian’s solution was
an ingenious compromise: he agreed to retain a substantial share of the provinces (initially Spain,
Gaul, Syria and Egypt), and with them most of the legions, but insisted that he was doing this only as
a temporary measure for a ten-year term to enable him to pacify these provinces and their frontiers.
Although he may not have firmly intended this at the outset, Augustus continued the division of the
provinces, through repeated extensions of five or ten years, for the rest of his long life, and so left it
to his successors as a permanent feature of the imperial system.213
A necessary element of this settlement was a clarification of the status of the provincial governors.
The public provinces continued to be governed by proconsuls and these were now appointed, in
accordance with republican forms, from ex-magistrates selected by the lot. Augustus nominated as
governors to his provinces senators who served as his legati (or in Egypt and, later in some smaller
provinces, equestrian praefecti), and, since they were commanding under Augustus’ auspices and
with imperium delegated from him, they were not eligible to triumph. A further consequence of
these arrangements was thus a severe restriction of senators’ opportunity to triumph, an outcome
which may not have been unwelcome to Augustus.
Legionary forces were retained initially by the proconsuls of Africa, Macedonia and Illyricum,
but the only triumphs earned by proconsuls after the division of the provinces were those celebrated
by L. Sempronius Atratinus in 21 and L. Cornelius Balbus in 19, both from Africa (nos. 297-298).
The fact that no proconsuls triumphed after Balbus need not reflect deliberate policy. As a result of
the advances in the Balkans, the legions there were stationed in imperial provinces from c. 11 BC,
leaving Africa as the only proconsular province with a legion. After Balbus’ campaign against the
Garamantes, the proconsuls of Africa are not known to have undertaken any further campaigning
until the tenure of L. Passienus Rufus c. AD 3; by then, the practice of granting triumphal ornamenta
to the emperor’s legati was well established, and it will have seemed natural that Passienus and his
successors should be content with the same.214
Balbus’ triumph is the last entry in the extant fragments of the so-called Capitoline triumphal list
and appeared at the bottom of the fourth pilaster, followed by a small section of roughly worked
stone, which left no room for a further entry. As we saw above (at nn. 3-4), the “Capitoline” consular
and triumphal lists were in fact set up on the triple Arch of Augustus in the Forum Romanum, a
structure which many scholars suppose to have been erected in honour of the Parthian settlement
achieved by Augustus in 20 BC. If that interpretation of the arch is correct, the inscription must have
been carefully designed in or soon after 19 BC so that all the triumphs which had occurred up to that
time would fit exactly on to the four pilasters used for the purpose.215 However, that would not imply
that no further triumphs were envisaged: whatever Augustus’ intentions for senatorial triumphs, he
must have planned that at least the princes of his family should in due course hold triumphs, as in

L. Marcius Censorinus (no. 277), who held consulships fusals of triumphs led to others ceasing to triumph is
at the time of their triumph. Various passages in Cassius probably his own erroneous conjecture. I cannot ac-
Dio and other sources speak of some of these command- cept the view that the modifications to Augustus’ pow-
ers as subordinate to Octavian or Antony. On the com- ers made in 19 included a grant of auspicial supremacy
plex problems relating to their status see Schumacher which gave him a monopoly of the triumph, as argued
1985, 191-211; Rich 1996, 93-99; Dalla Rosa 2014, 97- by Hurlet 2001 and 2006, 161-173; cf. Koortboijan
109; Vervaet 2014, 246-252. 2010, 268-271. See now Dalla Rosa 2014, 211-229; Ver-
213. For a detailed discussion of this settlement and Augus- vaet 2014, 276-288.
tus’ evolving intentions see Rich 2012b. 215. See Degrassi 1947, 20, 86-87, with Tab. LI; Beard 2007,
214. Cassius Dio’s suggestion (54.24.8) that Agrippa’s re- 68-69, 302-303.

the event just Tiberius was to do in Augustus’ lifetime. When the inscription was set up, it may have
been planned that the list of triumphs would be continued either elsewhere on the arch or in a dif-
ferent location, for example in Augustus’ projected new forum with its temple of Mars Ultor, which,
when it was founded, was given special functions in relation to triumphs.216
In my view, however, the arch was originally erected earlier, in honour of Augustus’ Actium victo-
ry, and subsequently remodelled to commemorate the Parthian settlement as well.217 If this is corr­
ect, it remains possible that the inscription was only designed and set up after Balbus’ triumph, but
an alternative deserves consideration. It was surely by design that the second pilaster, and so the first
half of the list, ended with the extended entry for the first triumph of M. Claudius Marcellus, with its
additional sentence recording his spolia opima (no. 154). By the mid-20s BC, Augustus was planning
the rapid advancement of his nephew, Marcellus’ descendant and namesake. If the inscription was
originally designed and set up on the arch at that time, a few lines may have been deliberately left
vacant in the expectation that the new Marcellus would provide a fitting climax to the fourth pilaster.
If so, such hopes were dashed by the youth’s untimely death in 23, leaving the vacant spaces to be
filled by Atratinus and Balbus.218

14. Conclusion

This study has focused primarily on the list of triumphs, and accordingly has had relatively little
to say about some important aspects of the triumph, for example the development of the ceremony
itself. I hope, however, that it has succeeded both in identifying significant fluctuations in triumphal
frequency and in relating them to developments in Roman warfare and senatorial policies.
The most important factor in bringing about these fluctuations was changes in the pattern of
Roman warfare and military commitments. The increased intensity and range of those involve-
ments during the conquest of Italy in the later fourth and early third centuries resulted in triumphs
occurring much more frequently than ever before, rising in the early third century to around one a
year. After the mid third century this high rate was not sustained, and for most of the remainder of
the Republic triumphs occurred at rates averaging between one every two years and two every three
years. They did, however, become less frequent during the critical period of the Hannibalic War, only
to rise to over one per year during the early second century with its intensive and mostly successful
warfare in northern Italy and Spain and three great wars in the East.
In the first century an important part was played by internal political developments, as the Re-
public tottered to its fall. Pompey was able to secure three full triumphs in defiance of the traditional
prohibition on such awards for commands held without a magistracy, but political obstructionism
thwarted others’ triumphal aspirations, helping to produce a sharp fall in triumphs in the Republic’s
last years. The dynasts’ own celebrations and their lavish patronage of their associates brought the
triumviral rate back to more than one per year in the period of Caesar’s dictatorship and the trium-
virate, but Augustus’ provincial settlement led (after two early exceptions) to the end of senatorial
access to the triumph, which now became both an imperial monopoly and a rarity.
Triumphs were throughout mainly the preserve of consular commanders, although down to the
fourth century military dictators also took a significant share. The senate generally reserved major
military commands to consuls, only entrusting praetors with such appointments when they had no
alternative. As a result, praetorian triumphs were frequent only in the early second century, when
the senate was obliged to entrust the warfare in Spain mainly to praetorian commanders and also

216. Triumphal functions: Cass. Dio 55.10.3. The Mars Ultor 218. For the possibility that the list was originally set up after
temple and Forum Augustum were planned in the af- Augustus’ triple triumph, with the final entries added
termath of the Parthian settlement: Rich 1998, 79-97; later, see Spannagel 1999, 245-252, who, however, takes
Spannagel 1999, 15-85. the sentence about Marcellus’ spolia opima to be a later
217. Rich 1998, 97-115; above, at n. 4. addition.

used them as fleet commanders in the East, and to a lesser extent also in the late Republic. Those
who triumphed in praetorian commands were conspicuously more successful than their peers in
reaching the consulship.219 However, this did not lead the senate to make such opportunities more
readily available.
There is comparatively little trace of senatorial policies directly addressing the overall frequency
of triumphs. The low number of triumphs in the Hannibalic War may perhaps reflect not only the
conditions of the war, but also a particular strictness in awarding triumphs at that critical time, and
in certain respects a relaxation of policy can be discerned in the immediately following years. The
early second century also saw an exceptional use of ovations to discriminate between praetorian
applicants for triumphs from Spain. However, the drop in triumphs after the early second century
is the result not of a deliberate policy to restrict triumphs, but simply of a reduction in successful
warfare and consequent opportunities for praetorian triumphs.
Personal influence and connections undoubtedly played a part in the senate’s decisions on indi-
viduals’ applications for triumphs, but its handling of these matters shows more consistency than
scholars have sometimes allowed. In each case the senate’s primary task was to determine whether
the applicant’s achievements were worthy of a triumph, and this adjudication was made on a shared
understanding of what might be deemed sufficient. In most cases the decision will have centred on
the applicant’s claim to have won one or more substantial victories, as shown by such indicators
as enemy killed and captured, balanced against Roman losses. There is some trace of customary
expectations of a minimum number of enemy killed for an imperatorial acclamation or a triumph,
but no indication that senatorial discretion was in practice fettered by such a rule. The continuing
importance of such claims is confirmed by the law carried by the younger Cato and his colleague
L. Marius as tribunes in 62 imposing a penalty on commanders who gave false numbers of enemy
killed or citizens lost in battle in a despatch to the senate.220
At all periods commanders who could plausibly claim to have ended their war and pacified the
region to which they had been sent would have stressed this aspect of their achievements. However,
this never became a necessary condition for the award of a full triumph, except, for a time in the
late third and early second centuries, for those who had not brought home their army. Success in
battle, as shown by enemy killed and booty won, sufficed for many triumphs in the early Republic,
and this continued to be the case during the Samnite Wars and the First Punic War, when numer-
ous triumphs were awarded while the protracted struggles against Rome’s great opponents dragged
on unresolved. However, from the Hannibalic War on, more stress appears to have been laid on
completed wars in triumphal claims and their assessment. Thereafter most triumphal applicants
probably did claim to have finished their war, although in many cases their pacifications were to
prove short-lived. In a few cases in the early second century, the senate even awarded triumphs to
commanders who had achieved pacifications with little or no loss of enemy life. Such awards do not
appear to have been made later, but this will not have been because of a change of policy, but just
because comparable circumstances had not recurred.
The ambivalent status of war completion in triumphal claims is well illustrated by the letters
written to Cicero in 45-44 by Vatinius when he was proconsul of Illyricum, having been appointed
to the post by Caesar. Vatinius, already styling himself imperator, enclosed with his first letter a copy
of his despatch to the senate about his achievements and asked Cicero for his support, evidently in
securing the senate’s recognition of his acclamation as imperator and the decreeing of supplicationes
(Fam. 5.9.1 [255 SB]). In his next letter, Vatinius complains of Caesar’s delay in putting the matter
before the senate (Fam. 5.10a.3 [256 SB]):

Caesar adhuc mihi iniuriam facit. de meis supplicationibus et rebus gestis Dalmaticis adhuc non refert, quasi vero
non iustissimi triumphi in Dalmatia res gesserim. nam, si hoc exspectandum est, dum totum bellum conficiam, vi-

219. Harris 1979, 32, 262-263; Waller 2011. no reason to doubt its historicity.
220. This law is attested only by Val. Max. 2.8.1, but there is

ginti oppida sunt Dalmatiae antiqua, quae ipsi sibi asciverunt, amplius sexaginta: haec nisi omnia expugno, si mihi
supplicationes non decernuntur, longe alia condicione ego sum ac ceteri imperatores.

Caesar is still treating me badly. He has still not put the motion about my thanksgivings and Dalmatian achievements,
as if my successes in Dalmatia had not been enough for a most well deserved triumph. For, if I must wait until
I complete the whole war, there are twenty ancient towns in Dalmatia, and sixty more which they have adopted.
If thanksgivings are not to be decreed to me unless I storm them all, I shall be in a very different position from other

By the time of his third letter, the supplicationes have been decreed and Vatinius has conducted a
new campaign, capturing six towns, one of which was particularly important. However, snow, cold
and rain have obliged him to withdraw, and so “I have been unfairly compelled … to abandon the
captured town and the completed war” [Fam. 5.10b [258 SB]: “indigneque … oppidum captum et
bellum confectum relinquere sum coactus”].
Vatinius thus insisted that commanders had commonly been deemed to have done enough for
supplicationes and a triumph without finishing a war, but nonetheless remained very aware of the
importance of war completion. He need not have worried. His governorship ended ingloriously:
Appian claims that the Dalmatians inflicted a defeat on him after Caesar’s death, and he was then
obliged to yield his army to Brutus.221 Nonetheless, the triumvirs permitted him to triumph in 42
(no. 273).
The changing character of the Romans’ warfare and military commitments led to triumphs being
sought in novel circumstances. Some departures from precedent appear to have aroused no oppo-
sition, like the first triumphs for proconsuls or praetors, but others were challenged. The principle
that only those commanders who fought under their own imperium and auspices could hold a tri-
umph was maintained unquestioned until Caesar ignored it to reward his legates Pedius and Fabius
Maximus (nos. 268, 269). Issues relating to joint or overlapping commands sometimes required
delicate adjudication by the senate, as in the cases of Q. Valerius Falto (no. 141), L. Furius Purpureo
(no. 164), and M. Helvius (no. 169). When commanders appointed as private citizens rather than by
a magistracy came to win successes worthy of a triumph, the senate took the view that such persons
were not eligible for a full triumph, and this principle continued in force until Pompey forced its
Marcellus in 211 was the first commander to apply for a triumph without bringing his army
home. Thereafter, such applications became common, as Rome’s overseas needs often required com-
manders to hand over their seasoned armies to their successors. The policy which the senate evolved
and, at least in the early second century, followed with fair consistency was that a commander who
had not brought back his army should not be eligible for a full triumph unless he had ended his
war and pacified the territory to which he had been assigned. Lip service may have continued to be
paid to this principle, but at least by the end of the second century some commanders, like Metellus
Numidicus (no. 230), were able to triumph without having either brought back their army or ended
their war.
The ancient ritual of the ovation was revived in 211 to provide a compromise solution for Mar-
cellus’ application. The earlier history of the ovation may by then already have been obscure, and
the statements of later scholars about the criteria for its award and the explanations offered by the
historians for alleged ovations in the early Republic are alike unreliable. From 211 on, following
the precedent set on that occasion, ovations were used to reward commanders whose achievements
were deemed worthy of a triumph, but who were held to be ineligible for a full triumph because in
some way they fell short of its customary expectations. Ovations of this kind were awarded to Mar-
cellus himself and to seven non-consular commanders in Spain in the early second century. Two of

221. App. Ill. 13.38-39, BC 4.75.317; Cic. Phil. 10.13; Livy Per. Vatinius’ command in Illyricum see Wilkes 1969, 43-44;
118; Vell. 2.69.3-4; Plut. Brut. 25.3; Cass. Dio 47.21.6. On Marasco 1995; Šašel Kos 2005, 359-368; Dzino 2010, 94.

these were deemed ineligible for a full triumph because they had not been appointed through a mag-
istracy (nos. 163, 168), and Helvius received this award because he had won his victory “in another’s
province”. At least one (no. 181) and perhaps all of these other ovations were awarded because, like
Marcellus, the commanders were held not to have finished their wars.
This relatively extensive use of ovations ceased after the early second century, when praetorian
commanders no longer enjoyed regular opportunities to win Spanish triumphs. However, the prin-
ciple that an ovation might be used to reward successes worthy of a triumph won in circumstances
for which a full triumph was deemed inappropriate found a new application in 132 with the victory
over the Sicilian slaves (no. 214). Ovations were used again as the appropriate reward for victories
over unworthy enemies after the Second Sicilian Slave War (no. 237), Crassus’ victory over Sparta-
cus (no. 252), and perhaps also M. Antonius’ victory over the Cilician pirates (no. 235), and Octavian
exploited this practice to enable him to celebrate the crushing of Sex. Pompeius (no. 281). This use
for victories over foes deemed unworthy of full triumphs was the only way in which ovations were
employed after the early second century, until Caesar, followed by Antony and Octavian, exploited
antiquarian research to turn the ritual to new ceremonial uses (nos. 270, 275, 276).

Appendix. The reconstructed triumphal list

Table 6 presents, in a simplified and modified form, the so-called Capitoline list of triumphs, as
originally inscribed on the Arch of Augustus, in so far as it can be reconstructed from the surviving
fragments of the inscribed lists, supplemented in their lacunae by the triumphs attested in other
sources. For the principles of reconstruction see Section 1 above. The data presented are drawn
from Degrassi 1947, 534-571, with the addition of no. 260 (above, n. 30) and further modifications
as specified below. Degrassi’s account is a revision and expansion of the presentation given in con-
venient tabular form at CIL 12, pp. 168-181. For other listings, following Degrassi, see Itgenshorst
2005, 262-271 (with further information in the accompanying CD, and including a numbering of the
triumphs, differing in various respects from that given here) and Bastien 2007, 403-415.
The great majority of the triumphs tabulated here were certainly included in the Capitoline list,
but see above for doubts in respect of nos. 39 (n. 10), 41 (n. 19), 98 (n. 23), 102 (n. 23). The ovation
won in the First Sicilian Slave War (no. 214) is attributed here to P. Rupilius, consul in 132, for the
reasons specified above (n. 27). In addition to the triumphs included in the table, between seven and
sixteen further triumphs will have been included in the Capitoline list whose identity must remain
conjectural: see further Section 1, with identification of likely inclusions. For the historical value of
the list see Section 2.
For simplicity, the table omits certain information included in the Capitoline list, such as the
commanders’ filiations, indications of iterated magistracies, and the calendar date and year ab urbe
condita of each triumph. Column 7 includes certain information not included on the inscribed lists,
as specified below. Italics are used (as in the tabulation of CIL 12) for data relating to those triumphs
whose entries in the inscribed lists are wholly lost and therefore known only from other sources.
Column 2 gives the date BC (on the conventional ‘Varronian’ chronology) implied for each
triumph by the indications in the inscribed list or (where they are lost) by other evidence. The
symbol ‘D’ indicates the spurious ‘dictator years’, on which see above at n. 49. The dates are as in
Degrassi’s listing except for nos. 102 (n. 104); 235 (Cic. Rab. Perd. 26; Broughton 1951, 569 n. 2); 246
(Badian 1955); 247 (Broughton 1952, 89, 92 n. 4).
Columns 3-5 indicate the nature of our evidence for each triumph. The symbol ‘x’ in Column 3
indicates that an entry for the triumph survives in whole or in part in the inscribed Capitoline list.
In Column 4 the symbols ‘U’ and ‘B’ indicate the survival of such an entry in respectively the Urbis-
alvian and Barberini lists. The symbol ‘x’ in Column 5 indicates that the triumph is attested by one
or more sources other than the inscribed triumphal lists.
Column 6 gives the commander’s name as it appears on the inscribed list(s) except for the omiss­
ion of filiation. As on the inscription, the number of iterated triumphs is included where applicable.
Degrassi’s supplements are shown in square brackets. Where an entry survives in two inscribed lists,
only restored matter absent from both lists is placed in square brackets, and, where their spelling
differs, that of the Capitoline list is followed.
Column 7 gives in abbreviated form the official status of the commander at the time of his
triumph as shown on the inscribed list(s) or restored. These indications are placed in square brack-
ets only when no clear trace of the status designation survives on the stone.
The indications of status given in the Capitoline and Urbisalvian lists are abbreviated as follows:
r = rex; c = co(n)s(ul); d = dict(ator); pc = pro co(n)s(ule); p = pr(aetor); pp = pro pr(aetore); IIIv =
IIIuir r(ei) p(ublicae) c(onstituendae).
The designation ‘pc(c)’ for the second triumph of Q. Fabius Maximus Rullianus (no. 83) indicates
that, although the Capitoline list deemed him to be triumphing as proconsul in a dictator year, this
triumph will, if historical, have been celebrated by him as consul (above, n. 53).
The inscribed lists use the designation pro co(n)s(ule) without distinction both for proconsuls
prorogued from their consulship and praetors prorogued pro consule. In this table for triumphs
down to 50 BC prorogued consuls are shown simply as ‘pc’ and praetors prorogued pro consule are

distinguished by the addition of the symbol ‘(p)’ after ‘pc’. This differentiation has not been contin-
ued after 50 BC because the link between magistracy and triumph had by then been broken: for
these later triumphs all those triumphing pro consule are shown simply as ‘pc’.
The symbol ‘(sm)’ in the status column after ‘pc’ or ‘pp’ indicates that the individual in question
had been appointed to his command when a private citizen without a magistracy (sine magistratu)
rather than by prorogation from a magistracy. The Capitoline list indicates the status of Cn. Cor-
nelius Blasio (no. 168) by an elaborate formula, which was probably also used for L. Cornelius Len-
tulus (no. 163) (see above, n. 24). Pompey’s status in his third triumph (no. 258) is designated just
as pro co(n)s(ule); it was no doubt given in the same way for his second (no. 253), and for his first
(no. 246) as pro pr(aetore) (that this was his status on that occasion is shown by Granius Licinianus
36, p. 31 Flemisch).
Amendments have been made to the status indicators for Q. Fabius Labeo (no. 178: inaccurately
given as pr(aetor) by Degrassi) and for Metellus Macedonicus (no. 208), Didius (no. 236), Crassus
(no. 252) and Pomptinus (no. 259), all of whom are designated as pro praetore by Degrassi, but will in
fact have commanded as praetorian proconsuls. This is attested for Metellus Macedonicus (Morgan
1969, 423-425; Broughton 1986, 39; Brennan 2000, 224) and Crassus (Eutrop. 6.7.2), and may be
inferred for the others from the likely conferment of consular imperium on all praetors commanding
in Macedonia from 146 or holding any significant military command after Sulla’s reforms (Brennan
2000, 230, 398, 619-621; Vervaet 2012, 74-76).
An entry in Column 8 indicates that the triumph belongs to one of the three special types: ‘Ov’
designates an ovation, ‘Nav’ a naval triumph, and AM an Alban Mount triumph. These indications
are placed in square brackets only when no trace of this designation of the triumph survives on the
Column 9 gives the enemy or enemies and/or region(s) from which the list(s) stated the triumph
as won, with Degrassi’s supplements in square brackets. Where an entry survives in two inscribed
lists, only restored matter absent from both lists is placed in square brackets, and, where their for-
mulation or spelling differs, that of the Capitoline list is followed.The province from which Q. Minu-
cius Thermus triumphed in 195 has been restored as Hispania Citerior, not Ulterior as by Degrassi
(Richardson 1986, 181-182; Brennan 2000, 166).
For triumphs whose entries in the inscribed lists are lost, Degrassi’s conjectural indications of
enemy/region are reproduced (in italics). I have added identifications of their Spanish provinces
for nos. 251, 253-255 (for nos. 254-255 see Broughton 1986, 13, 177; Brennan 2000, 514-5) and the
conjectural identification of Sardinia as the province from which Q. Servilius Vatia won his first
triumph (no. 242; Brennan 2000, 477, 870 n. 136).

Table 6. The reconstructed triumphal list
No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
1 753 x x Romulus r de Caeninensibus
2 753? x x [Ro]m[ulus II] r [de Antemnatibus?]
3 x Romulus III r de Veientibus
4 x Tullus Hostilius r de Albanis
5 x Tullus Hostilius II r de Albanis Fidenatibusque
6 x Tullus Hostilius III r de Sabinis
7 x x [Ancus Marcius] [r] [de Sabi]neis et [Veientibus]
8 x x L. [T]arquinius Priscus r de Latineis
9 588 x x L. Tarquinius Priscus II r de Etrusceis
10 585 x x L. Tarquinius Priscus III r de Sabineis
11 571 x x Ser. Tullius r de Etruscis
12 567 x x Ser. Tullius II r de Etrusc(eis)
13 x x Ser. Tullius III r de Etrusceis
14 x L. Tarq[uinius Superb(us)] [r] [de Volsceis]
15 x L. Tarqui[nius] Super[bus II] [r] [de Sabineis]
16 509 x x P. Valer[ius Poplicola] c d[e Veientib(us) et Tarqui-
17 505 x x M. Valer[ius Volusus] c [de Sabineis]
18 505 x x P. Postu[mius Tubertus] c [de Sabineis]
19 504 x x P. Valeriu[s] Poblicol[a II] [c] [de Sa]bineis et Veient[ibus]
20 503 x x P. Postumiu[s Tubert]us c Ov [de Sabinei]s
21 503 x x Agrippa M[enenius Lan]atus c de [Sabineis]
22 502 x x Sp. Cassiu[s Vicellinu]s c d[e Sabineis?]
23 496? x x A. Postu[mius] Regil[lensis] d [de Latineis]
24 494 x x M.’ Vale[rius Maxim(us)] d [de Sabineis et Medullineis]
25 487 x T. Siccius Sabinus c de Volscis
26 487 x C. Aquillius Tuscus c Ov de Hernicis
27 486 x x [Sp. Cassius Vicellinus II] [c] [de Volsceis Herniceisque]
28 475 x x [P. Valerius Poplic]ola [c] [de Veientibus Sabi]neisque
29 474 x x [A. Manlius Vulso] c [Ov] [de Veientibus]
30 468 x x [T. Quinctius Capitolinus [c] [de Volsceis Antiatibus]
31 462 x x [L. Lucretius Tricipitinus] [c] [de Aequeis et Vo]ls[ceis]
32 462 x x [T. Veturius] Gemin[us [c] [Ov] [de Aequ]eis et [Volsceis]
33 459 x x [Q. Fabius Vibulanus] [c] [de Ae]queis e[t Volsceis]
34 459 x x [L. Corne]lius M[aluginensis c de Volsceis [A]ntiatib(us)
35 458 x x [L. Quin]ctius Cincin[n]atus [d] de Aequeis
36 449 x x [L. Valer]ius Poplicola [c] de Aequeis
37 449 x x [M. Hora]tius Barbatus [c] [de] Sabin[eis]
38 443 x x [M. Gega]nius [Mace]rinus [c] de V[olsceis]
39 437 x [M. Valerius Lactuca Maxi] [c] [?]
40 431 x A. Postumius Tubertus d de Volscis et Aequis
41 428 x A. Cornelius Cossus c de Veientibus
42 426 x Mam. Aemilius Mamercinus d de Veientibus
43 421 x N. Fabius Vibulanus c Ov de Aequis
44 410 x C. Valerius Potitus Volusus c Ov de Aequis
45 396 x M. Furius Camillus d de Veientibus
46 392 x L. Valerius Potitus c de Aequis
47 392 x M. Manlius Capitolinus c Ov de Aequis

No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
48 390 x M. Furius Camillus II d de Gallis
49 389 x M. Furius Camillus III d de Volscis, Aequis, Etruscis
50 385 x A. Cornelius Cossus d de Volscis
51 380 x T. Quinctius Cincinnatus d de Praenestinis
52 367 x x [M. Furius Camillus IV] [d] [de Galleis]
53 361 x [T. Quinctius Pennus [d] [de Galleis]
Capitolinus Crispinus]
54 361 x [C. Sulpicius Peticus] c [de Hernicis]
55 360 x x [C. Poetelius Libo Visolus] c de Galleis et Tiburtibus
56 360 x x M. Fabius Ambustus c Ov de Herniceis
57 358 x x C. Sulpicius Peticus II d de Galleis
58 358 x C. Plautius Proculus c de Hernicis
59 357 x x C. Marcius Rutulus c de Privernatibus
60 356 x x C. Marcius Rutulus d de Tusceis
61 354 x x M. Fabius Ambustus II c de Tiburtibus
62 350 x x [M. Popi]llius Laenas c [de G]alleis
63 346 x x [M. Va]lerius Corvus c [de] Antiatibus Volsceis Satri-
64 343 x x [M. Vale]rius Corvus II [c] de Samnitibus
65 343 x x [A. Cor]nelius Cossus Arvina c de Samnitibus
66 340 x x [T.] Manlius Imperiossus c de Latineis, Campaneis, Sidi-
Torquat(us) cineis, [A]urunceis
67 339 x x [Q. P]ublilius Philo c de Latineis
68 338 x x L. Furius Camillus c de Pedaneis et Tiburtibus
69 338 x x C. Maenius c de Antiatibus, Lavinieis,
70 335 x x M. Valerius Corvus III c de Caleneis
71 329 x [L.] Aimilius Mamercin(us) c de Privernatib(us)
72 329 x x C. Plautius Decianus c de Privernatibus
73 326 x x Q. Publilius Philo II pc de Samnitibus, Palaeopoli-
74 324D x x L. Papirius Cursor d de Samnitibus
75 322 x x L. Fulvius Curvus c de Samnitibus
76 322 x x Q. Fabius Maximus c de Samnitibus et Apulis
77 319 x x L. Papirius Cursor II c de Samnitibus
78 314 x C. Sulpicius Longus c de Samnitibus
79 312 x M. Valerius Maximus c de Samnitibus Soraneisq(ue)
80 311 x C. Iunius Bubulcus c de Samnitibus
81 311 x Q. Aemilius Barbula c de Etrusceis
82 309D x x L. Papirius Cursor III d de Samnitibus
83 309D x x Q. Fabius Maximus pc(c) de Etrusceis
Rullian(us) II
84 306 x x Q. Marcius Tremulus c de Anagnineis Herniceisq(ue)
85 305 x x M. Fulvius Curvus Paetin(us) c de Samnitibus
86 304 x x P. Sempronius Sophus c de Aequeis
87 304 x P. Sulpicius Saverrio c de Samnitibus
88 302 x x C. Iunius Bubulcus Brutus II d de Aequeis
89 301D x x M. Valer[i]us Cor[vus] IV d [de] Etrusceis et [Ma]rseis
90 299 x x M. Fulvius Paetinus c de Samnitibus Nequinati-
91 298 x x Cn. Fulvius Maxim(us) c de Samnitibus Etrusceisque

No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
92 295 x x Q. Fabius Maximus Rullianus c de Samnitibus et Etrusceis,
III Galleis
93 294 x x L. Postumius Megell(us) c de Samnitib(us) et Etruscis
94 294 x x M. Atilius Regulus c de Volsonibus et Sam-
95 293 x x Sp. Carvilius Maximus c de Samnitibus
96 293 x x [L. Papiriu]s Cursor [c] [de Sam]nitibus
97 291 x x [Q. Fabius M]aximus [Gurges] [pc] [de Samnitibus]
98 291 x L. Postumius Megellus II c de Samnitibus et Apulis
99 290 x M.’ Curius Dentatus c de Samnitibus
100 290 x P. Cornelius Rufinus c de Samnitibus
101 290 x M.’ Curius Dentatus II c de Sabineis
102 283 x M.’ Curius Dentatus III p? Ov de Lucaneis
103 283 x P. Cornelius Dolabella c de Gallis Senonibus
104 282 x x [C. Fabricius Luscinus] [c] [de Samnitibus, Lucaneis
105 281 x [Q. Mar]cius Philippus [c] [d]e Etrusceis
106 280 x [Ti. Coru]ncanius c [de V]ulsiniensibus et Vulci-
107 280 x [L. Ai]milius Barbula pc de Tarentineis, Samnitibus et
108 278 x x C. Fabricius Luscinus II c de Lucaneis, Bruttieis, Tar-
entin(eis), Samnitibus
109 277 x C. Iunius Brutus Bubulc(us) c de Lucaneis et Bruttieis
110 276 x Q. Fabius Maximus Gurges II c de Samnitibus, Lucaneis,
111 275 x x M.’ Curius Dentat(us) IV [c] [de Sa]mnitib(us) et rege
112 275 x [L. Cornelius] Lentul(us) c de Samnitibus et [Lucaneis]
113 273 x [C. Claudius] Canina [c] [de Luca]neis, Samnitibus,
114 272 x [Sp. Carvilius Ma]ximus II [c] [de Samnitibus, Lucaneis,
Bruttieis,] Tarentin[eis]que
115 272 x x L. Papirius Cursor I[I] c de Ta[rent]ineis, L[ucaneis,
Samnitib(us)] Bruttieis[que]
116 270 x [Cn.] Cornel[ius Blasio] [c] de Regi[neis]
117 268 x x [P. Semp]ronius [Sophus] [c] de Peicentibus
118 268 x x Ap. Claudius [Russus] c de Peicen[tibus]
119 267 x x M. Atilius Re[gu]lus c de Sallentineis
120 267 x x L. Iulius Libo c de Sallentineis
121 266 x D. Iunius Pera c de Sassinatibus
122 266 x N. Fabius Pictor c de Sassinatibus
123 266 x N. Fabius Pictor II c de Sallentineis Messapieisque
124 266 x D. Iunius Pera II c de Sallentineis Messapieis-
125 264 x x M. Fulvius Flaccus c de Vulsiniensibus
126 263 x x M.’ Valerius Maxim(us) c de Poenis et rege Siculor(um)
Messalla Hierone
127 260 x x C. Duilius c Nav de Sicul(eis) et classe Punica
128 259 x x L. Cornelius Scipio c de Poenis et Sardin(ia) Cor-
129 258 x C. Aquillius Florus pc de Poenis
130 258 x C. Sulpicius Paterculus c de Poenis et Sardeis
131 257 x x A. Atilius Caiatinus p ex Sicilia de Poenis
132 257 x x C. Atilius Regulus c Nav de Poenis

No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
133 256 x L. Manlius Vulso Long(us) c Nav de Poenis
134 254 x Ser. Fulvius Paetinus Nobilior pc Nav de Cossurensibus et Poeneis
135 254 x M. Aimilius Paullus pc Nav de Cossurensibus et Poeneis
136 253 x Cn. Cornelius Scipio Asina pc de Poeneis
137 253 x C. Sempronius Blaesus c de Poeneis
138 252 x C. Aurelius Cotta c de Poeneis et Siculeis
139 250 x x L. Caecilius Metellus pc de Poeneis
140 241 x x C. Lutatius Catulus pc Nav de Poeneis ex Sicilia
141 241 x Q. Valerius Falto pp Nav ex Sicilia
142 241 x Q. Lutatius Cerco c de Falisceis
143 241 x A. Manlius Torquatus Atticus c de Falisceis
144 235 x x P. Cornelius Lentulus c de Ligurib(us)
145 235 x x T. Manlius Torquatus c de Sardeis
146 234 x Sp. Carvilius Maximus c de Sardeis
147 233 x x Q. Fabius Maximus c de Liguribus
148 233 x M.’ Pomponius Matho c de Sardeis
149 231 x x C. Papirius Maso c AM de Corseis
150 228 x x Cn. Fulvius Centumalus pc Nav ex Illurieis
151 225 x x L. Aimilius Papus c de Galleis
152 223 x x C. Flaminius c de Galleis
153 223 x x P. Furius Philus c de Galleis et Liguribus
154 222 x x M. Claudius Marcellus c de Galleis Insubribus et Ger-
155 219 x L. Aemilius Paullus c de Illyriis
156 219 x M. Livius Salinator c de Illyriis
157 211 x M. Claudius Marcellus II pc AM de Syracusanis
158 211 x M. Claudius Marcellus III pc Ov de Syracusanis
159 209 x Q. Fabius Maximus c de Tarentinis
Verrucosus II
160 207 x M. Livius Salinator II c de Poenis et Hasdrubale
161 207 x C. Claudius Nero c Ov? de Poenis et Hasdrubale
162 201 x P. Cornelius Scipio Africanus pc de Hannibale, de Poenis, et
rege Syphace
163 200 x L. Cornelius Lentulus pc(sm) Ov ex Hispania
164 200 x L. Furius Purpureo p de Gallis
165 197 x C. Cornelius Cethegus c de Gallis Insubribus Ceno-
166 197 x x [Q. Minucius Rufus] [c] AM de G[alleis Liguribusque]
167 196 x x [M.] Claudiu[s] Marcellus [c] de Gal[leis Insubribus]
168 196 x x [Cn. Co]rnelius Blasio pc(sm) Ov [de Celtibereis]
169 195 x U x M. Helv[ius] [pc](p) Ov de Celtibereis
170 195 x U x Q. M[inu]cius Thermus pc(p) [ex Hispania citeriore]
171 194 x U x M. Por[ci]us Cato pc ex Hi[spania citeriore]
172 194 x U x [T.] Quinc[t]ius Flamin[inus] pc [ex Macedonia et rege]
173 191 x x M. Fulvius [Nobilior] pc(p) Ov [ex Hispania ulteriore]
174 191 x x [P. Co]rne[lius Scipio Nasica] [c] [de Galleis Boieis]
175 190 x M.’ Acilius Glabrio pc de Aetolis et rege Antiocho
176 189 x x [L. Aimilius Regillus] pp [Nav] ex Asia de [rege Antiocho]
177 189 x x L. Cornelius S[cipio Asiaticus] pc ex Asia de r[ege Antiocho]
178 188 x x [Q.] Fabius Labe[o] [pp] [Nav] [ex] Asia de rege Antioch[o]
179 187 x x [M. Fu]lvius Nobil[ior II] [pc] [de] Aetoleis et Ceph[allenia]
180 187 x x [Cn. Manlius] Vul[so] [pc] [ex Asia de Galleis]

No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
181 185 x L. Manlius Acidinus Fulvianus pc(p) Ov ex Hispania citeriore
182 184 x C. Calpurnius Piso pc(p) de Lusitanis Celtiberisque
183 184 x L. Quinctius Crispinus pc(p) de Lusitanis Celtiberisque
184 182 x A. Terentius Varro pc(p) Ov ex Hispania citeriore
185 181 x L. Aemilius Paullus pc de Liguribus Ingaunis
186 180 x P. Cornelius Cethegus pc de Liguribus Apuanis
187 180 x M. Baebius Tamphilus pc de Liguribus Apuanis
188 180 x Q. Fulvius Flaccus pc(p) de Celtiberis
189 179 x Q. Fulvius Flaccus II c de Liguribus
190 178 x x [Ti. Sempronius] Grac[chus] [pc](p) [de Celti]bereis Hispaneis-
191 178 x x [L. Postumius] Albinus pc(p) [ex] Lu[sita]nia Hispani-
192 177 x x [C. C]laudius Pulcher c de Histre[is et] Liguribus
193 175 x x [T]i. Sempronius Gracchus II pc [ex Sa]rdinia
194 175 x U [M.] Titin[ius] Curvus pc(p) [ex Hispania citeriore]
195 175 x U [M. Aimiliu]s Lepidus c de Liguribus
196 175 x U [P. Muci]us [Sc]aevula, P. [c] de Liguribus
197 174 x U x [Ap. Cl]audius Cent(h)o pc(p) Ov ex Hispania Celtiberia
198 172 x U x C. Cicereius, qui scrib(a) pp AM ex Corsica
199 167 x U x L. Aimilius Paullus II pc ex Macedon(ia) et rege Perse
200 167 x U x Cn. Octavius pp Nav ex Macedon(ia) et rege Perse
201 167 x U x L. Anicius Gallus pp de rege Gentio et Illurie[is]
202 166 x U [M. Cla]udius Marcellus c de Gallis Contrubriis, Liguri-
bus (V)eliatibus
203 166 x [C. Sulpi]cius Galus c de Liguribus Tal[…]rneis
204 158 x [M. Fulviu]s Nobilior pc [de Liguri]bus Eleatibus
205 155 x [M. Claudius] Marcellus II c [de .....]us et Apua[neis]
206 155 x [P. Cornelius Scipio Nasica] [c] [d]e De[lmateis]
207 152 x L. Mummius pc(p) ex Hispania ulteriore
208 146 x Q. Caecilius Metellus pc(p) ex Macedonia de Andrisco
209 146 x P. Cornelius Scipio Africanus pc ex Africa
210 145 x L. Mummius II pc ex Achaea et Corintho
211 143 x Ap. Claudius Pulcher c de Gallis Salassis
212 133? x D. Iunius Brutus Callaecus pc de Callaecis et Lusitanis
213 132 x P. Cornelius Scipio Africanus pc de Numantinis
Aemilianus II
214 132 x P. Rupilius c Ov de Sicilia
215 129 x x C. Sem[p]ronius Tuditan(us) c de Iapudibus
216 126 x x M.’ Aquillius pc ex A[si]a
217 123 x x M. Fu[lv]ius Flaccus pc [de Li]guribus Voconteis
218 122 x C. Sextius Calvin(us) pc de Ligurib(us) Voconteis
219 122 x L. Aurelius Orestes pc ex Sardinia
220 121 x x Q. Caecilius Metellus pc de Baliarib(us)
221 120 x x Q. Fabius Maximus pc de Allobro[gibus] et rege
Arvenorum Betuito
222 120 x x Cn. Domitius Ahenobarb(us) pc de Galleis Arv[e]rneis
223 117 x x L. Caecilius Mete[ll]us pc de De[lma]teis

No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
224 117 x Q. Marcius Rex pc de Liguribus Stoeneis
225 115 x x M. Aemilius Scaurus c de Galleis Karneis
226 111 x x M. Caecilius Mete[llus] pc ex Sardini[a]
227 111 x x [C. Caeci]lius [Metellus [pc] [ex Thraecia]
228 110 x [M. Livius] Drusus [pc] [de Scordist]eis Macedoni-
229 107 x x [Q. Servilius] Caepio pc(p) [ex Hispania ul]teriore
230 106 x x [Q. Caecilius Metel]l(us) [pc] [de Numideis et] rege Iu-
Numidic(us) gurtha
231 106 x x [M. Minucius Rufus] pc [de Scordisteis et Thraecibus]
232 104 x x [C. Marius] [c] [de Numideis et rege Iugurtha]
233 101 x C. Marius II c de Cimbris et Teutonis
234 101 x Q. Lutatius Catulus pc de Cimbris
235 100 x M. Antonius pc(p) de piratis ex Cilicia
236 100? x T. Didius pc(p) ex Macedonia
237 99 x M.’ Aquillius pc Ov de servis ex Sicilia
238 98 x L. Cornelius Dolabella pc(p) ex Hispania ulterior(e) de
239 93 x x T. Didius II pc ex Hispania de Celtibereis
240 93 x x P. Licinius Crassus pc de Lusitaneis
241 89 x x Cn. Pompeius Strabo c de Asculaneis Picentibus
242 88 x [P. Serv]ilius Vatia pp [ex Sardinia?]
243 81 x x [L. Cornelius Sull]a Felix d [de rege Mithridate]
244 81 x x [L. Licinius Murena] [pp] [de rege Mithridate]
245 81/80 x C. Valerius Flaccus pc ex Celtiberia et Gallia
246 81/80 x Cn. Pompeius Magnus pp(sm) ex Africa
247 77 x Cn. Cornelius Dolabella pc ex Macedonia
248 74 x P. Servilius Vatia Isauricus II pc de Isauris
249 72? x C. Scribonius Curio pc de Dardanis
250 71 x M. Terentius Varro Lucullus pc de Bessis
251 71 x Q. Caecilius Metellus Pius pc ex Hispania ulteriore
252 71 x M. Licinius Crassus pc(p) Ov de fugitivis et Spartaco
253 71 x Cn. Pompeius Magnus II pc(sm) ex Hispania citeriore
254 70? x L. Afranius pc(p) ex Hispania citeriore
255 69 x M. Pupius Piso Frugi pc(p) ex Hispania ulteriore
256 63 x L. Licinius Lucullus pc ex Ponto de rege Mithridate et
ex Armenia de rege Tigrane
257 62 x x [Q. Caecilius Metellus [pc] [ex Creta insula]
258 61 x x [Cn. Pompeius Magnus III] pc(sm) [ex Asia, Ponto, Armenia,
Paphla]gonia, Cappadocia,
[Cilicia, Syria, Scytheis, Iu-
daeis, Alb]ania, pirateis
259 54 x x [C. Pomptinus] [pc(p)] [de Allobrogibus]
260 54/53 x Q. Caecilius Metellus Pius pc(p) ?
261 51 x P. Cornelius Lentulus Spinther pc ex Cilicia
262 47 x M. Aemilius Lepidus pc ex Hispania
263 46 x C. Iulius Caesar d ex Gallia
264 46 x C. Iulius Caesar II d ex Aegypto
265 46 x C. Iulius Caesar III d ex Ponto de rege Pharnace
266 46 x C. Iulius Caesar IV d ex Africa de rege Iuba
267 45 x C. Iulius Caesar V d ex Hispania

No. Date Sources Commander Status Type Enemy/Region
BC Capit. U/B Other
268 45 x x Q. Fabius Maximus c ex Hispania
269 45 x x Q. Pedius pc ex Hispania
270 44 x x C. Iulius Caesar VI d Ov ovans ex monte Albano
271 43 x B x L. Munatius Plancus pc ex Gallia
272 43 x B x M. Aimilius Lepidus IIIv ex Hispania
273 42 x B P. Vatinius pc de Illurico
274 41 x B x L. Antonius c ex Alpibus
275 40 x B x Imp. Caesar IIIv Ov quod pacem cum M. Antonio
276 40 x B x M. Antonius IIIv Ov quod pacem cum Imp. Cae-
sare fecit
277 39 x B L. Marcius Censorinus c ex Macedonia
278 39 x B x C. Asinius Pollio pc ex Parthineis
279 38 x B x P. Ventidius pc ex Tauro monte et Partheis
280 36 x B x Cn. Domitius Calvinus pc ex Hispania
281 36 x B x Imp. Caesar IIIv Ov ex Sicilia
282 34 x B x T. Statilius Taurus pc ex Africa
283 34 x B x C. Sosius pc ex Iudaea
284 34 x B C. Norbanus Flaccus pc ex Hispania
285 33 B L. Marcius Philip<p>us [pc] ex Hispania
286 33 B Ap. Claudius Pulc<h>er [pc] ex Hispan[i]a
287 33 B L. Cornificius [pc] ex Africa
288 29 B x Imp. Caesar [c] de Dalma[t]is
289 29 x Imp. Caesar c ex Actio
290 29 B x Imp. Caesar [c] ex A[egy]pto
291 28 B [C. C]alv[is]ius [S]abinus, C. [pc] ex Hispania
292 28 x B x [C. Carr]inas [pc] ex [G]al[l]is
293 28 x B L. Autronius Paetus pc ex Africa
294 27 x B x M. Licinius Crassus pc ex Thraecia et Geteis
295 27 x B x M. Valerius Messalla Corvinus pc ex Gallia
296 26 x B Sex. Appuleius pc ex Hispania
297 21 x B L. Sempronius Atratinus pc ex Africa
298 19 x x L. Cornelius Balbus pc ex Africa

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