Marcus Atilius Regulus

Marcus Atilius Regulus

Marcus Atilius Regulus

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This is about the Roman general and consul; for other Romans of that name, see Marcus Atilius Regulus .<br>


Marcus Atilius Regulus (born probably before 307 BC, died (executed) c. 250 BC), a general and consul (for the second time) in the ninth year of the First Punic War (256 BC). Regulus defeated the Salentini (See also Messapia) and captured Brundisium (now Brindisi) during his first term as consul in 267 BC.

He was one of the commanders in the Roman naval expedition that shattered the Carthaginian fleet at Cape Ecnomus, and landed an army on Carthaginian territory. The invaders were so successful that the other consul, Lucius Manlius Vulso Longus, was recalled to Rome, leaving Regulus behind to finish the war.

After a severe defeat at Adys near Carthage, the Carthaginians were inclined towards peace, but the terms proposed by Regulus were so harsh that they resolved to continue the war. The Cathaginians replaced the outmatched general Hamilcar with new leadership and in 255 BC, Regulus was completely defeated at the Battle of Tunis. He was taken prisoner by the Spartan mercenary general Xanthippus along with 500 of his men.

There is no further trustworthy information about him. According to tradition, he remained in captivity until 250 BC, when after the defeat of the Carthaginians at the Battle of Panormus he was sent to Rome on parole to negotiate a peace or an exchange of prisoners. On his arrival, he instead strongly urged the Roman Senate to refuse both...
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