Who was the first king of Rome?

Right around 753 BC, says Roman mythology, Romulus and twin brother Remus founded Rome. The tale of Romulus and Remus is a mixture of folklore, mythical tradition, and invention — much set forth by prolific Roman historian Titus Livy.

Romulus and Remus have a god for a father and a virgin for a mother; they are rescued miraculously; they grow up in humble circumstances; they battle with evildoers; and the secret of their parentage is revealed. Romulus gains his kingdom by killing Remus, after which he rules wisely and capably, as effective in war as in peace.

Patriotic heroes were characteristic of Rome, because the Romans had a community spirit that elevated the idea of making personal sacrifices for the state. In contrast, the Greeks lacked a sense of the common welfare and created individualistic heroes out for fame. In this respect, the Romans represented an advance over Greek culture.