Geographical sites:

  • Italy (click here to focus in map) (see also Pleiades #1052)
    Pleiades_icon Italia region Geocontext: ITL
    Description: The Italian peninsula extending northward to the Alps as recognized by the Romans.
  • Rome (click here to focus in map) (see also Pleiades #423025)
    Pleiades_icon Roma urban, settlement, temple Geocontext: Roma/Rome
    Description: The capital of the Roman Republic and Empire.


Text #6310

Dio Cassius. Roman History. Vol. 9
[DioCass. 73.14.3--73.14.4. Translated by Earnest Cary. Harvard University Press. 1925. (9 Vols.) p. 101]



Moreover, a pestilence occurred, the greatest of any of which I have knowledge; for two thousand persons often died in Rome in a single day. Then, too, many others, not alone in the City, but throughout almost the entire empire, perished at the hands of criminals who smeared some deadly drugs on tiny needles and for pay infected people with the poison by means of these instruments. The same thing had happened before in the reign of Domitian1.

  1. See lxvii. 11, 6. [OF]

Text #169

Herodian of Antioch. History of the Roman Empire
[Herodian. 1.12. Translated by Edward C. Echols. University of California Press. 1961]

[c.189]1 About this time, plague struck all Italy. The suffering was especially severe in Rome, since the city, which received people from all over the world, was overcrowded. The city suffered great loss of both men and animals. Then, on the advice of his physicians, Commodus left Rome for Laurentum. This region enjoyed the shade from extensive laurel groves (whence the area derives its name); it was cooler there and seemed to be a safe haven. The emperor is said to have counteracted the pollution in the air by the fragrant scent of the laurels and the refreshing shade of the trees. At the direction of their doctors, those who remained in Rome filled their nostrils and ears with fragrant oils and used perfume and incense constantly, for some said that the sweet odor, entering first, filled up the sensory passages and kept out the poison in the air; or, if any poison should enter, it would be neutralized by the stronger odors. The plague, however, continued to rage unchecked for a long time, and many men died, as well as domestic animals of all kinds.

  1. Original annotation by Jona Lendering [nE]

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