September 29, 2014
Tryout 29: Kisses at Rome

One theory given by Plutarch for the source of the name Rome is this. That refugees from Troy put to sea and were driven by hard weather to the coasts of Tuscany, where they laid anchor near the mouth of the river Tiber. 

The Trojan women, “out of heart and weary with the sea,” decided to burn the ships. They must have liked the place, and feared their men would insist on further wanderings if the ships were left intact. And so, the name of the woman who first proposed this burning, “one of the highest birth and best understanding amongst them,” was called Roma.

The men at first were angry, but they came around. Lucky for them. “Things in a short while succeeded far better than they could hope, in that they found the country very good, and the people courteous[.]” 

That’s one theory, at least, for how the city of Rome earned its name.

Plutarch adds, as an afterthought:  ”From this, they say, has come down that custom at Rome for women to salute their kinsmen and husbands with kisses; because these women, after they had burnt the ships, made use of such endearments when entreating and pacifying their husbands.”

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