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Battle of Potentia
Statistics
Location Outside Potentia, northern Lucania, Italy
Date Early 71 BC
Result Roman Victory
combatants
  • -60,000 rebels
  • 50,000 Romans
casualties
  • Thousands of rebels
  • Few hundred Romans
previous battle Battle of Ariminum
following battle Battle on the Milea Ridge

The Battle of Potentia was the second battle between the rebellion and the forces of Marcus Licinius Crassus during the Third Servile War. It took place after the defeat of Mummius and before the Battle on the Melia Ridge. It was the first victory the Roman Republic achieved against the rebellion since the defeat of Crixus in 72 BC.

Battle

Following the failure of Mummius, Crassus moved his army northwards. He met the rebels near the city of Potentia in Nothern Lucania. The rebels were hoping the morale of Crassus' men would weaken during the battle, but the punishment of Decimation maintained their morale. It is believed Crassus and Spartacus met for the first time in this battle.

Outcome

  • Roman victory.
  • Rebels retreat southwards towards Calabria, to the city of Thurii.
  • Hundreds of rebels killed.
  • Minor Roman casualties.

Trivia

It is unknown where exactly the first pitched battle between Crassus and Spartacus took place, but it is presumed it took place somewhere in northern Lucania. It has been named after the city of Potentia (modern Potenza) as it holds the most significance in Roman history out of all the other cities in northern Lucania.

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