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By Ekaterina Zhdanova-Redman
1 More than 2,700 years ago, Numitor, the king of Alba Longa, an ancient Italian city, was deposed by his younger brother Amulius. Amulius did not want Numitor to have any descendants, so that there would be no potential claimants to the throne. He ordered Numitor's infant grandsons, the twins Romulus and Remus, drowned in the Tiber River.
2 Fortunately, the twins survived and were suckled by a she-wolf and fed by a woodpecker until they were found and raised by the herdsman Faustulus. The twins became leaders of a band of adventurous youths, eventually killing Amulius and restoring their grandfather to the throne.
3 They founded a town on the site where they had been saved. When Romulus built a city wall, Remus jumped over it and was killed by his brother. Romulus consolidated his power, and the city of Rome was named for him. That is what legend tells us about Rome. It was built on seven hills on the east bank of the Tiber in 753 BC.
4 In the centuries that followed, the Romans came to dominate Italy and the Mediterranean. They farmed, traded, and fought for new lands. Rome grew to become the center of a vast empire that stretched across Europe into Africa and Asia. Legions of soldiers marched through country after country, conquering the primitive peoples they came across.
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