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Caudine Forks(kô`dīn), narrow passes in the Southern Apennines, S Italy, on the road from Capua to Benevento. There, in 321 B.C., the Samnites routed a Roman army.
a mountain pass in Samnium, near Caudia in central Italy; the site of a Samnite victory over the Romans during the Second Samnite War in 321 B.C. The Roman legions fell into the ambush laid by Gavius Pontius and surrendered. The disarmed Roman soldiers were forced to pass underneath a yoke made of two spears driven into the ground and joined at the top by a third. The Romans abandoned the Samnite cities they had already occupied and turned over 600 hostages. The expression “to pass beneath a Caudine yoke” has come to meana great degradation or humiliation.