Battle of the River Ana, 79 BC

The battle of the River Ana (79 BC) saw Sertorius’s legate L. Hirtuleius defeat and kill M. Domitius Calvinus, the governor of Nearer Spain, somewhere on the River Ana (Sertorian War).

The battle took place in the second year of the Sertorian War. Sertorius had been invited back to Spain in 80 BC, and had almost immediately defeated L. Fufidius, the Sullan governor of Further Spain, on the River Baetis. In the following year the ex Consul Metellus Pius replaced Fufidius, and attempted to trap Sertorius between his army, and that of Lucius Domitius, the governor of Nearer Spain. However Sertorius was able to field two armies. While he faced Metellus, his able quaestor L. Hirtuleius was sent to deal with Domitius. The result was a victory for Hirtuleius, which left Nearer Spain undefended. Much of the area soon fell to Sertorius, who dominated the east coast of Spain for much of the rest of the war.

We only have passing mentions of this battle. Plutarch mentions that Lucius Domitius, pro-consul of Nearer Spain, was killed by Sertorius’s quaestor.

According to Florus’s Epitome of Livy the battle took place on the River Ana, the modern Guadiana, and Sertorius’s troops were commanded by one of the Hirtulei.

The periochae of Livy say that the Proconsul Lucius Manlius and Marcus Domitius, his deputy were defeated in battle by the quaestor Hirtuleius.

Eutropius also credits Hirtuleius with the victory.

At about same time Sertiorus defeated Thorius, one of Metellus's legates,

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (20 April 2018), Battle of the River Ana, 79 BC ,

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