| The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen|
| Etext Book II Chapter 6|
And With Tarentum
Presumably about the same time, and in consequence doubtless of the Samnite peace, peace was also made between Rome and Tarentum. The two cities had not indeed directly opposed each other in the field. The Tarentines had been inactive spectators of the long contest between Rome and Samnium from its beginning to its close, and had only kept up hostilities in league with the Sallentines against the Lucanians who were allies of Rome. In the last years of the Samnite war no doubt they had shown some signs of more energetic action. The position of embarrassment to which the ceaseless attacks of the Lucanians reduced them on the one hand, and on the other hand the feeling ever obtruding itself on them more urgently that the complete subjugation of Samnium would endanger their own independence, induced them, notwithstanding their unpleasant experiences with Alexander, once more to entrust themselves to a -condottiere-. There came at their call the Spartan prince Cleonymus, accompanied by five thousand mercenaries; with whom he united a band equally numerous raised in Italy, as well as the contingents of the Messapians and of the smaller Greek towns, and above all the Tarentine civic army of twenty-two thousand men. At the head of this considerable force he compelled the Lucanians to make peace with Tarentum and to install a government of Samnite tendencies; in return for which Metapontum was abandoned to them. The Samnites were still in arms when this occurred; there was nothing to prevent the Spartan from coming to their aid and casting the weight of his numerous army and his military skill into the scale in favour of freedom for the cities and peoples of Italy. But Tarentum did not act as Rome would in similar circumstances have acted; and prince Cleonymus himself was far from being an Alexander or a Pyrrhus. He was in no hurry to undertake a war in which he might expect more blows than booty, but preferred to make common cause with the Lucanians against Metapontum, and made himself comfortable in that city, while he talked of an expedition against Agathocles of Syracuse and of liberating the Sicilian Greeks. Thereupon the Samnites made peace; and when after its conclusion Rome began to concern herself more seriously about the south-east of the peninsula -- in token of which in the year 447 a Roman force levied contributions, or rather reconnoitred by order of the government, in the territory of the Sallentines -- the Spartan -condottiere- embarked with his mercenaries and surprised the island of Corcyra, which was admirably situated as a basis for piratical expeditions against Greece and Italy. Thus abandoned by their general, and at the same time deprived of their allies in central Italy, the Tarentines and their Italian allies, the Lucanians and Sallentines, had now no course left but to solicit an accommodation with Rome, which appears to have been granted on tolerable terms. Soon afterwards (451) even an incursion of Cleonymus, who had landed in the Sallentine territory and laid siege to Uria, was repulsed by the inhabitants with Roman aid.