From south to north it is traversed by the channel of the Parma, crossed here by three bridges; and from east to west runs the line of the Via Aemilia, by which ancient Parma was connected on the one hand with Ariminum (Rimini), and on the other with Placentia (Piacenza).
The eighth region, termed Gallia Cispadana, comprised the southern portion of Cisalpine Gaul, and was bounded on the north (as its name implied) by the river Padus or P0, from above Placentia to its mouth.
The Via Flaminia was the earliest and most important road to the north; and it was soon extended (in 187 B.C.) by the Via Aemilia running through Bononia as far as Placentia, in an almost absolutely straight line between the plain of the P0 and the foot of the Apennines.
Thence the Via Postumia led to Dertona, Placentia and Cremona, while the Via Aemilia and the Via Julia Augusta continued along the coast into Gallia Narbonensis.
After the conquest of the mountain tribes, its importance was assured by its position on the Via Aemilia, by which it was connected in 187 B.C. with Ariminum and Placentia, and on the road, constructed in the same year, to Arretium; while another road was made, perhaps in 175 B.e., to Aquilelia.
Cremona was founded by the Romans in 218 B.C. (the same year as Placentia) as an outpost against the Gallic tribes.
Bank of the Po, at the meeting-point of roads from Placentia, Mantua (the Via Postumia in both cases), Brixellum (where the roads from Cremona and Mantua to Parma met and crossed the river), Laus Pompeia and Brixia, still gave it considerable importance.
Aemilius Lepidus, from whom it takes its name; it ran from Ariminum to Placentia, a distance of 176 m.
It never had an independent government, and not later than 190 B.C. was made part of the colony of Placentia (founded 219).
But they still cherished a hatred of the Romans, and during the Second Punic War (218), irritated by the foundation of the Roman colonies of Cremona and Placentia, they rendered valuable assistance to Hannibal.
But for this he was too late, and all that could be done was to throw troops into Placentia and hold the line of the Po.
Otho's advanced guard successfully defended Placentia against Alienus Caecina, and compelled that general to fall back on Cremona.
We hear of the Romans touching here in 216 B.C., and of its destruction by the Carthaginians in 209 B.C. and immediate restoration by the Romans, who made it and Placentia their 1 See Notizie degli scavi (1898), 395 (A.
Placentia), a town and episcopal see of Emilia, Italy, the capital of the province of Piacenza, 422 m..
Later still Augustus reconstructed the road from Dertona to Vade, and into Gallia Narbonensis, and gave it the name of Julia Augusta from Placentia onwards.
Placentia is mentioned in connexion with its capture by Cinna and a defeat of the forces of Carbo in the neighbourhood (82 B.C.), a mutiny of Julius Caesar's garrison (50(50 B.C.), another mutiny under Augustus (40 B.C.), the defence of the city by Spurinna, Otho's general, against Caecina, Vitellius's general (A.D.
Serravalle, where remains of an amphitheatre and inscriptions have been found), Dertona, Iria, Placentia, Cremona, and thence eastwards.