Mettus is known for only two people in the early history of Rome (7th/6th cents. BC), for the Sabine Mettus Curtius [I 2], a contemporary of Romulus (Dion. Hal. Ant. 2,42,2; 46,3; Lib. de praenominibus 1), and for Mettus Fufetius, the dictator of Alba Longa at the time of Tullus Hostilius  (Varro in Non. 2,443 L., Verg. Aen. 8,642 etc.). The form
Mettius is also transmitted for both, albeit less reliably (Enn. Ann. 126 V.; almost always in Liv., and so on). No etymology of the name suggests itself; the doubled
tt indicates a shortened form of the name.
Metellus , used only as a
cognomen (as in the case of the Caecilii), is a diminutive. Rix, Helmut (Freiburg) I. The Republican period [German version] [I 1] M., M. Sent to Ariovistus by Caesar in 58 BC. Sent by Caesar to Ariovistus in 58 BC, together with C. Valerius Procillus. The mission seemed to be without danger, since M. had enjoyed the
hospitium ( Hospitality III. Greece and Rome) of the leader of the Suebi in the past, yet the Romans were taken prisoner and not freed until Caesar's victory (Caes. Gall. 1,47,4-6; 1,53,8). M. was probably
IIIIvir monetalis in 44 BC (RRC 480/2; 3; 23; 28). MRR 3,142. Frigo, Thomas (Bonn) II. The Empire …