Front Matter The First Settlers Escape from the Burning City The Clever Trick The Boards Are Eaten The Wolf and the Twins Romulus Builds Rome The Maidens Carried Off Union of Sabines and Romans Death of Romulus Strange Signs of the Romans The Quarrel with Alba The Horatii and Curiatii Tarquin and the Eagle The Roman Youths The King Outwitted The Murder of Tarquin The Ungrateful Children The Mysterious Books Tarquin's Poppies The Oracle of Delphi The Death of Lucretia The Stern Father A Roman Triumph A Roman Triumph (Cont.) Defense of the Bridge The Burnt Hand The Twin Gods The Wrongs of the Poor Fable of the Stomach The Story of Coriolanus The Farmer Hero The New Laws Death of Virginia Plans of a Traitor A School-Teacher Punished Invasion of the Gauls The Sacred Geese Two Heroes of Rome Disaster at Caudine Forks Pyrrhus and His Elephants The Elephants Routed Ancient Ships Regulus and the Snake Hannibal Crosses the Alps The Romans Defeated The Inventor Archimedes The Roman Conquests Destruction of Carthage Roman Amusements The Jewels of Cornelia Death of Tiberius Gracchus Caius Gracchus Jugurtha, King of Numidia The Barbarians The Social War The Flight of Marius The Proscription Lists Sertorius and His Doe Revolt of the Slaves Pompey's Conquests Conspiracy of Catiline Caesar's Conquests Crossing of the Rubicon Battle of Pharsalia The Death of Caesar The Second Triumvirate The Vision of Brutus Antony and Cleopatra The Poisonous Snake The Augustan Age Death of Augustus Varus Avenged Death of Germanicus Tiberius Smothered The Wild Caligula Wicked Wives of Claudius Nero's First Crimes Christians Persecuted Nero's Cruelty Two Short Reigns The Siege of Jerusalem The Buried Cities The Terrible Banquet The Emperor's Tablets The Good Trajan Trajan's Column The Great Wall Hadrian's Death Antoninus Pius The Model Pagan Another Cruel Emperor An Unnatural Son The Senate of Women The Gigantic Emperor Invasion of the Goths Zenobia, Queen of Palmyra A Prophecy Fulfulled First Christian Emperor Roman Empire Divided An Emperor's Penance Sieges of Rome End of the Western Empire

Story of the Romans - Helene Guerber

End of the Empire of the West

A few years after the death of the terrible Attila, Valentinian was murdered; and during the next twenty years nine emperors reigned, and there were troubles and wars without end.

The people were very superstitious in those times; and, as their troubles increased, some one suddenly remembered that Romulus, the founder of Rome, had seen twelve vultures. The report was soon spread all over the country that these twelve vultures represented as many centuries, and that, as Rome had been founded about twelve hundred years before, its rule would soon be at an end.

In the course of these twenty years, Genseric, King of the Vandals, came over from Africa, captured Rome, and allowed his soldiers to sack it for fourteen days. As his men were very rough indeed, they destroyed many things which they could not carry away; and when they departed they took with them the widow of Valentinian, and her daughters, and reduced many noble Romans to slavery.

Romulus Augustulus was the last of these nine emperors. Soon after his election, Odoacer, the leader of a tribe of Germans, made himself king of Italy, deposed Romulus Augustulus, and began to rule in his stead.

The empire of the West then came to an end (A.D. 476), and Rome, which had been founded by one Romulus, was shorn of its glory under another emperor of the same name, after having ruled nearly all the known world for many a year.

The Roman senate, seeing that the Western empire was ended, now sent the tiara and purple robes to Constantinople, where the Eastern empire continued until the city fell into the hands of the Turks in 1453.