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Romans generously permitting them to build another within ten miles of the sea."
“Generously! Oh mamma! but you are joking. What did the poor creatures do ?”
“ They entreated, even with tears, that the order might be withdrawn, but finding all vain, they determined to suffer every thing in defence of their city and their homes. They now saw but too late the folly of trusting in and caring for riches alone. Their gold and silver plate, their magnificent decorations, in which they had so prided themselves, were melted down to make arms, since they Had given up all their iron; the women gave up their ornaments, and even cut off their long hair for bow strings. So united and so resolved, although they had given up so much, you will not be surprised to hear that for some time they held out against the Romans, repulsing them with incredible bravery. At last Scipio, the second Africanus, seduced the master of the horse to his side, and from that time went on successfully. Having driven the inhabitants into the citadel, he secured the isthmus, which led into the sea, and blocked up the harbour, thus preventing them from receiving provisions. With immense labour the Carthaginians cut a fresh passage into
the sea, but notwithstanding their efforts, the army was subdued, and the citadel yielded. The temple alone remained, defended by a few, who, at last, with desperate fury set fire to it and perished in the flames. So large, we are told, was this magnificent city, that it was twentyfour miles round, and the burning continued seventeen days. The senate ordered that it should not be rebuilt; this was not strictly attended to, yet at the present day it is hardly known where Carthage stood. Such was the end of the third and last Punic War. In the same year, and upon a trifling pretence, Corinth, one of the finest cities in Greece, was also taken and destroyed by the Romans, and Spain was subdued. So great was the terror they excited, that the Numantians when besieged, in order to escape falling into their hands, set fire to their city and perished in the flames.
“I have already informed you,” said Mrs. Stratton, as her children seated themselves by her, “that the wealth acquired by the Romans in their immense conquests had produced luxury of all kinds, and a continued indulgence in luxury naturally produces vice. The two Gracchi were the first who tried to stop the corruption of the great. They revived the Licinian law.”
“But who were they, mamma?"
“ Their mother, Cornelia, was the daughter of Scipio Africanus. She was a Roman matron of great virtue, and had educated her children with the greatest care."