Real War in the Book of Mormon: The Gadianton Robbers of Ancient Rome

Book of Mormon events involving Gadianton Robbers bear striking resemblances to conflicts in ancient Rome described by historians Sallust and Tacitus. Sallust recounts an unsuccessful coup attempt similar to events in the Book of Helaman while Tacitus tells of a war in north Africa resembling events in 3 Nephi. Similarities include essential characteristics of the people involved such as motives and government operations; military objectives and tactics, both on the battlefield and in diplomatic efforts; and the close timing of parallel events. Mormon even resembles Roman historians in biographical experiences, moralizing tone, and use of Roman historiographical conventions.