Romulus and Remus
Posted on 8th February 2023
In Roman mythology, there is a story regarding the founding of the city of Rome by Romulus and Remus.
Rhea Silva was the daughter of Numitor, the former king of the ancient Latin city of Alba Longa. Numitor was deposed from rule by his younger brother Amulius, who forced Rhea Silva to become a vestal virgin, therefore she would not have children who could fight Amulius for rule of the kingdom.
Romulus and Remus were the twin sons of Rhea Silvia and the god Mars. The king Amulius believed the twins were a threat to his rule and wanted them dead, so they were abandoned in a basket in the river Tiber hoping they would float away and die.
While in the Tiber, the basket became snagged on reeds by the rivers-edge and was found by a she-wolf, Lupa. The wolf nursed the babies and a woodpecker fed them, until they were raised by a shepherd, Faustulus as his own children.
Faustulus told the children the story of the she-wolf and when the twins became young adults, they decided to build a new city near where they had been found, but couldn’t agree on where it should be built. Romulus wanted to build the city on Palatine Hill however Remus wanted it built on Aventine Hill. To settle this disagreement, the brothers decided to seek the gods help through an augury (observed behaviour of birds).
Each brother stood on the top of their respective hill; Remus saw 6 birds fly overhead, Romulus saw 12, but still they disagreed. Remus believed he had won as he saw the birds first, however Romulus stated he had won as he saw more birds.
Romulus started to build a wall to his city on Palatine hill, but the brothers could still not agree and this resulted in Romulus murdering his own twin brother Remus.
Romulus then built his city and named it after himself.
That city became Rome and it was founded in 753BC.
Tagged as: Junior Ancient Rome
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