Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened. — Winston Churchill


(Lucius Quinctius)

519–439 BC
Civilization: Roman — Rome
   Field of Renown:  military — Dictator
Era:  Early Republic

Cincinnatus is famous for returning to his farm after sixteen glorious days as a dictator. He was a former consul who had retired to his farm, when the Roman Senate, with great ceremony, offered him the dictatorship because the Roman army had become trapped while fighting the ∆quians. Cincinnatus quickly raised an army, marched on the enemy, and rescued the trapped Consulís army in a single day. After a week of celebrations in Rome, he returned to his farm, and picked up his plow where he had left it.

Cincinnatus was recalled out of retirement many years later to put down a plebeian revolt.

Key events during the life of cincinnatus:

460 BC
Elected Consul.
458 BC
Offered Dictatorship to save army stuck in a trap.
439 BC
Second Dictatorship, revolt of plebeians.

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Other Resources

Story Links
Book Links
Story of Cincinnatus  in  Fifty Famous Stories Retold  by  James Baldwin
Cincinnatus  in  Stories From Livy  by  Alfred J. Church
Farmer Hero  in  The Story of the Romans  by  H. A. Guerber
Plans of a Traitor  in  The Story of the Romans  by  H. A. Guerber
Cincinnatus  in  Famous Men of Rome  by  John H. Haaren & A. B. Poland
Roman Army in a Trap  in  The Story of Rome  by  Mary Macgregor
Friend of the People  in  The Story of Rome  by  Mary Macgregor
Cincinnatus and the Aequians  in  Historical Tales: Roman  by  Charles Morris
Cincinnatus, the Man from the Plough  in  Old World Hero Stories  by  Eva March Tappan

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Image Links

 in Fifty Famous Stories Retold

Put on thy robe and hear the words of the people.'
 in Stories From Livy

A Roman Army passing under the Yoke
 in Famous Men of Rome

Short Biography
Minucius Consul whose army was trapped by the Aequians.
Gracchus Cloelius Leader of Aequian army
Maelius Rich plebeian who gave money to poor, killed by jealous senate.