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According to the story, here’s how Rome got started: twin baby boys named Romulus and Remus (whose dad was Mars, the god of war) were abandoned in the wilderness of what we now call Italy. A friendly she-wolf discovered the boys and raised them as her own pups. She taught them survival skills, like how to bark at the moon and scratch your ear using your hind paw.

Eventually they grew up and founded a town where they’d been abandoned. It was a perfect spot: on the Tiber river, easy access to the sea, smack in the middle of Italy which is smack in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. But boys will be boys and these brothers quarreled, argued and fought (they were sons of the god of war, remember). During their most bloody fight, Romulus killed Remus. Romulus took over the town and named it after himself—Rome.

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