Rome is said to have been founded by Romulus and Remus on the 21st of April, 753 years before the Christian era. The city of Rome was named after Romulus.
Who were Romulus and Remus?
Romulus and Remus were believed to be twin brothers who according to Roman myth and legend were the founders of Rome. Romulus (c. 771 BC - 716 BC) and Remus (c. 771 BC - 753 BC) were revered as the twin sons of the priestess Rhea Silvia and Mars, the Roman god of war.
The Myth and Legend of Romulus and Remus
The Myth and Legend of Romulus and Remus - their Mother and Father
Numitor and Amulius were two brothers who jointly ruled a region in ancient Italy. Amulius, the younger brother, seized the kingdom; and Numitor, who was of a peaceful disposition, made no resistance to his brother. Amulius, fearing that the two children of Numitor might not submit so quietly to his usurpation had his only son to be murdered and made his daughter, Rhea Silvia, a vestal virgins. As a Vestal Virgin Rhea Silvia was compelled to live and die as an unmarried virgin. But the Vestal Virgin Rhea Silvia became the mother of twins who were fathered by Mars, the god of war. She was, in consequence, put to death, because she had broken her vow, and her twin sons were doomed to be drowned in the river Tiber.
The Myth and Legend of Romulus and Remus and the She-Wolf
The Tiber had overflowed its banks far and wide; and the cradle in which the babies were placed was stranded at the foot of the Palatine, and overturned on the root of a wild fig-tree. A she-wolf, which had come to drink of the stream, carried them into her den hard by, and suckled them; and when they wanted other food, the woodpecker, a bird sacred to Mars, brought it to them. At length, this marvelous spectacle was seen by Faustulus, the king's shepherd, who took the children away from the she-wolf and home to his wife, Acca Larentia. They were called Romulus and Remus, and grew up along with the sons of their foster-parents on the Palatine Hill. Romulus and Remus grew up to avenge the wrongs which their family had suffered killing Amulius and placed their grandfather Numitor on the throne of Alba. Romulus and Rebus originated from ancient city of Latium, Italy, in the Alban Hills about 12 miles southeast of Rome which was under the dominion of the Etrurians.
Romulus and Remus decide to found a new city
Romulus and Remus loved their old home on the Palatine Hill, and therefore left Alba to found a city on the banks of the Tiber. But a dispute arose between the brothers exactly where the city should be built, and after whose name it should be called. Romulus wished to build it on the Palatine, Remus on the Aventine. It was agreed that the question should be decided by the gods; and each took his station on the top of his chosen hill, awaiting the pleasure of the gods by some striking sign. The night passed away, and as the day was dawning Remus saw six vultures; but at sunrise, when these tidings were brought to Romulus, twelve vultures flew by him. Each claimed the augury in his own favor; but it was decided that Romulus was the favored brother.
The Reign of Romulus (753-716BC)
Romulus proceeded to mark out the boundaries of his city. He yoked a bullock and a heifer to a plough, and drew a deep furrow around the Palatine. This formed the sacred limits of the city, and was called the Pomoerium. To the original city on the Palatine was given the name of Roma Quadrata, or Square Rome, to distinguish it from the one which subsequently extended over the seven hills. The city was founded on the 21st of April, 753BC and named after Romulus. He reigned for thirty-seven years until one day the sun was suddenly eclipsed, and a dreadful storm dispersed the people. When daylight returned Romulus had disappeared, for his father Mars had carried him up to heaven in a fiery chariot. Shortly afterward he appeared in more than mortal beauty to a senator named Proculus Sabinus, and bade him tell the Romans to worship him under the name of the god Quirinus.