Gaius Lutatius Catulus

Politician

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Who is Gaius Lutatius Catulus?

Gaius Lutatius Catulus was a Roman statesman and naval commander in the First Punic War.

He was elected as a consul in 242 BC, a novus homo. During his consulship he supervised the construction of a new Roman fleet. This fleet was funded by donations from wealthy citizens, since the public treasury was virtually empty. He then led the fleet into victory over Hanno the Great's Carthaginian fleet in the Battle of the Aegates Islands. This was the decisive battle of the First Punic War. To celebrate his victory, he built a temple to Juturna in Campus Martius, in the area currently known as Largo di Torre Argentina.

His brother, Quintus Lutatius Cerco, was a consul in the following year and a censor in 236 BC.

Gaius Lutatius Catulus is also the main character of Finnish writer Jukka M. Heikkilä's book Merikonsuli.

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Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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