The Jugurthine War (Trans. Watson)
|I-IV. The introduction—V. The author’s declaration of his design, and prefatory account of Jugurtha’s family—VI. Jugurtha’s character—VII. His talents excite apprehensions in his uncle, Micipsa—VIII. He is sent to Numantia. His merits, his favour with Scipio, and his popularity in the army—IX. He receives commendation and advice from Scipio, and is adopted by Micipsa, who resolves that Jugurtha, Adherbal, and Hiempsal, shall, at his death, divide his kingdom equally between them—X. He is addressed by Micipsa on his death-bed—XI. His proceedings, and those of Adherbal and Hiempsal, after the death of Micipsa—XII. He murders Hiempsal—XIII. He defeats Adherbal, and drives him for refuge to Rome. He dreads the vengeance of the senate, and sends ambassadors to Rome, who are confronted with those of Adherbal in the senate-house—XIV. The speech of Adherbal—XV. The reply of Jugurtha’s ambassadors, and the opinions of the senators—XVI. The prevalence of Jugurtha’s money, and the partition of the kingdom between him and Adherbal—XVII. A description of Africa—XVIII-XIX. An account of its inhabitants, and of its principal divisions at the commencement of the Jugurthine war—XX. Jugurtha invades Adherbal’s part of the kingdom—XXI. He defeats Adherbal, and besieges him in Cirta—XXII. He frustrates the intentions of the Roman deputies—XXIII. Adherbal’s distress—XXIV. His letter to the senate—XXV. Jugurtha disappoints a second Roman deputation—XXVI. He takes Cirta, and puts Adherbal to death—XXVII. The senate determine to make war upon him, and commit the management of it to Calpurnius—XXVIII. He sends an ineffectual embassy to the senate. His dominions are vigorously invaded by Calpurnius—XXIX. He bribes Calpurnius, and makes a treaty with him—XXX. His proceedings are discussed at Rome—XXXI. The speech of Memmius concerning them—XXXII. The consequences of it—XXXIII-XXXIV. The arrival of Jugurtha at Rome, and his appearance before the people—XXXV. He procures the assassination of Massiva, and is ordered to quit Italy—XXXVI. Albinus, the successor of Calpurnius, renews the war. He returns to Rome, and leaves his brother Aulus to command in his absence—XXXVII-XXXVIII. Aulus miscarries in the siege of Suthul, and concludes a dishonourable treaty with Jugurtha—XXXIX. His treaty is annulled by the senate. His brother, Albinus, resumes the command—XL. The people decree an inquiry into the conduct of those who had treated with Jugurtha—XLI-XLII. Consideration on the popular and senatorial factions—XLIII. Metellus assumes the conduct of the war—XLIV. He finds the army in Numidia without discipline—XLV. He restores subordination—XLVI. He rejects Jugurtha’s offers of submission, bribes his deputies, and marches into the country—XLVII. He places a garrison in Vacca, and seduces other deputies of Jugurtha—XLVIII-LIII. He engages with Jugurtha, and defeats him. His lieutenant, Rutilius, puts to flight Bomilcar, the general of Jugurtha—LIV. He is threatened with new opposition. He lays waste the country. His stragglers are cut off by Jugurtha—LV. His merits are celebrated at Rome. His caution. His progress retarded—LVI. He commences the siege of Zama, which is reinforced by Jugurtha. His lieutenant, Marius, repulses Jugurtha at Sicca—LVII-LVIII. He is joined by Marius, and prosecutes the siege. His camp is surprised—LIX-LX. His struggles with Jugurtha, and his operations before the town—LXI. He raises the siege, and goes into winter quarters. He attaches Bomilcar to his interest—LXII. He makes a treaty with Jugurtha, who breaks it—LXIII. The ambition of Marius. His character. His desire of the consulship—LXIV-LXV. His animosity towards Metellus. His intrigues to supplant him—LXVI-LXVII. The Vaccians surprise the Roman garrison, and kill all the Romans but Turpilius, the governor—LXVIII-LXIX. Metellus recovers Vacca, and puts Turpilius to death—LXX-LXXII. The conspiracy of Bomilcar and Nabdalsa against Jugurtha, and the discovery of it. Jugurtha’s disquietude—LXXIII. Metellus makes preparations for a second campaign. Marius returns to Rome, and is chosen consul, and appointed to command the army in Numidia—LXXIV. Jugurtha’s irresolution. Metellus defeats him—LXXV. The flight of Jugurtha to Thala. The march of Metellus in pursuit of him—LXXVI. Jugurtha abandons Thala, and Metellus takes possession of it—LXXVII. Metellus receives a deputation from Leptis, and sends a detachment thither—LXXVIII. The situation of Leptis—LXXIX. The history of the Philæni—LXXX-LXXXI. Jugurtha collects an army of Getulians, and gains the support of Bocchus, King of Mauritania. The two kings proceed towards Cirta—LXXXII-LXXXIII. Metellus marches against them, but hearing that Marius is appointed to succeed him, contents himself with endeavouring to alienate Bocchus from Jugurtha, and protracting the war rather than prosecuting it—LXXXIV. The preparations of Marius for his departure. His disposition towards the nobility. His popularity—LXXXV. His speech to the people—LXXXVI. He completes his levies, and arrives in Africa—LXXXVII. He opens the campaign—LXXXVIII. The reception of Metellus in Rome. The successes and plans of Marius—LXXXIX-XCI. Marius marches against Capsa, and takes it—XCII-XCIV. He gains possession of a fortress which the Numidians thought impregnable—XCV. The arrival of Sylla in the camp. His character—XCVI. His arts to obtain the favour of Marius and the soldiers—XCVII-XCVIII. Jugurtha and Bocchus attack Marius, and are vigorously opposed—XCIX. Marius surprises them in the night, and routs them with great slaughter—C. His vigilance, and maintenance of discipline—CI. He fights a second battle with Jugurtha and Bocchus, and gains a second victory over them—CII. He arrives at Cirta. He receives a deputation from Bocchus, and sends Sylla and Manlius to confer with him—CIII. Marius undertakes an expedition. Bocchus prepares to send ambassadors to Rome, who, being stripped by robbers, take refuge in the Roman camp, and are entertained by Sylla during the absence of Marius—CIV. Marius returns. The ambassadors set out for Rome. The answer which they receive from the senate—CV-CVII. Bocchus desires a conference with Sylla—CVIII-CIX. Negotiations between Sylla and Bocchus—CX. The address of Bocchus to Sylla—CXI-CXIII. The reply of Sylla. The subsequent transactions between them. The resolution of Bocchus to betray Jugurtha, and the execution of it—CXIV. The triumph of Marius.|
Mankind unreasonably complain of their nature, that, being weak and short-lived, it is governed by chance rather than intellectual power; for, on the contrary, you will find, upon reflection, that there is nothing more noble or excellent, and that to nature is wanting rather human industry than ability or time.
The ruler and director of the life of man is the mind, which, when it pursues glory in the path of true merit, is sufficiently powerful, efficient, and worthy of honour, and needs no assistance from fortune, who can neither bestow integrity, industry, or other good qualities, nor can take them away. But if the mind, ensnared by corrupt passions, abandons itself to indolence and sensuality, when it has indulged for a season in pernicious gratifications, and when bodily strength, time, and mental vigour, have been wasted in sloth, the infirmity of nature is accused, and those who are themselves in fault impute their delinquency to circumstances.
If man, however, had as much regard for worthy objects, as he has spirit in the pursuit of what is useless, unprofitable, and even perilous, he would not be governed by circumstances more than he would govern them, and would attain to a point of greatness, at which, instead of being mortal, he would be immortalised by glory.
As man is composed of mind and body, so, of all our concerns and pursuits, some partake the nature of the body, and some that of the mind. Thus beauty of person, eminent wealth, corporeal strength, and all other things of this kind, speedily pass away; but the illustrious achievements of the mind are, like the mind itself, immortal.
Of the advantages of person and fortune, as there is a beginning, there is also an end; they all rise and fall, increase and decay. But the mind, incorruptible and eternal, the ruler of the human race, actuates and has power over all things, yet is itself free from control.
The depravity of those, therefore, is the more surprising, who, devoted to corporeal gratifications, spend their lives in luxury and indolence, but suffer the mind, than which nothing is better or greater in man, to languish in neglect and inactivity; especially when there are so many and varied mental employments by which the highest renown may be attained.
Of these occupations, however, civil and military offices, and all administration of public affairs, seem to me, at the present time, by no means to be desired; for neither is honour conferred on merit, nor are those, who have gained power by unlawful means, the more secure or respected for it. To rule our country or subjects by force, though we may have the ability, and may correct what is wrong, is yet an ungrateful undertaking; especially as all changes in the state lead to bloodshed, exile, and other evils of discord; while to struggle in ineffectual attempts, and to gain nothing, by wearisome exertions, but public hatred, is the extreme of madness; unless when a base and pernicious spirit, perchance, may prompt a man to sacrifice his honour and liberty to the power of a party.
Among other employments which are pursued by the intellect, the recording of past events is of pre-eminent utility; but of its merits I may, I think, be silent, since many have spoken of them, and since, if I were to praise my own occupation, I might be considered as presumptuously praising myself. I believe, too, that there will be some, who, because I have resolved to live unconnected with political affairs, will apply to my arduous and useful labours the name of idleness; especially those who think it an important pursuit to court the people, and gain popularity by entertainments. But if such persons will consider at what periods I obtained office, what sort of men were then unable to obtain it, and what description of persons have subsequently entered the senate, they will think, assuredly, that I have altered my sentiments rather from prudence than from indolence, and that more good will arise to the state from my retirement, than from the busy efforts of others.
I have often heard that Quintus Maximus, Publius Scipio, and many other illustrious men of our country, were accustomed to observe, that, when they looked on the images of their ancestors, they felt their minds irresistibly excited to the pursuit of honour. Not, certainly, that the wax, or the shape, had any such influence; but, as they called to mind their forefathers’ achievements, such a flame was kindled in the breasts of those eminent persons, as could not be extinguished till their own merit had equalled the fame and glory of their ancestors.
But, in the present state of manners, who is there, on the contrary, that does not rather emulate his forefathers in riches and extravagance, than in virtue and labour? Even men of humble birth, who formerly used to surpass the nobility in merit, pursue power and honour rather by intrigue and dishonesty, than by honourable qualifications; as if the prætorship, consulate, and all other offices of the kind, were noble and dignified in themselves, and not to be estimated according to the worth of those who fill them.
But, in expressing my concern and regret at the manners of the state, I have proceeded with too great freedom, and at too great length. I now return to my subject.
I am about to relate the war which the Roman people carried on with Jugurtha, King of the Numidians; first, because it was great, sanguinary, and of varied fortune; and secondly, because then, for the first time, opposition was offered to the power of the nobility; a contest which threw everything, religious and civil, into confusion, and was carried to such a height of madness, that nothing but war, and the devastation of Italy, could put an end to civil dissensions. But before I fairly commence my narrative, I will take a review of a few preceding particulars, in order that the whole subject may be more clearly and distinctly understood.
In the second Punic war, in which Hannibal, the leader of the Carthaginians, had weakened the power of Italy more than any other enemy since the Roman name became great, Masinissa, King of the Numidians, being received into alliance by Publius Scipio, who, from his merits was afterwards surnamed Africanus, had performed for us many eminent exploits in the field. In return for which services, after the Carthaginians were subdued, and after Syphax, whose power in Italy was great and extensive, was taken prisoner, the Roman people presented to Masinissa, as a free gift, all the cities and lands that they had captured. Masinissa’s friendship for us, accordingly, remained faithful and inviolate; his reign and his life ended together. His son, Micipsa, alone succeeded to his kingdom; Mastanabal and Gulussa, his two brothers, having been carried off by disease. Micipsa had two sons, Adherbal and Hiempsal, and had brought up in his house, with the same care as his own children, a son of his brother Mastanabal, named Jugurtha, whom Masinissa, as being the son of a concubine, had left in a private station.
Jugurtha, as he grew up, being strong in frame, graceful in person, but, above all, vigorous in understanding, did not allow himself to be enervated by pleasure and indolence, but, as is the usage of his country, exercised himself in riding, throwing the javelin, and contending in the race with his equals in age; and, though he excelled them all in reputation, he was yet beloved by all. He also passed much of his time in hunting; he was first, or among the first, to wound the lion and other beasts; he performed very much, but spoke very little of himself.
Micipsa, though he was at first gratified with these circumstances, considering that the merit of Jugurtha would be an honour to his kingdom, yet, when he reflected that the youth was daily increasing in popularity, whilst he himself was advanced in age, and his children but young, he was extremely disturbed at the state of things, and revolved it frequently in his mind. The very nature of man, ambitious of power, and eager to gratify its desires, gave him reason for apprehension, as well as the opportunity afforded by his own age and that of his children, which was sufficient, from the prospect of such a prize, to lead astray even men of moderate desires. The affection of the Numidians, too, which was strong towards Jugurtha, was another cause for alarm; among whom, if he should cut off such a man, he feared that some insurrection or war might arise.
Surrounded by such difficulties, and seeing that a man, so popular among his countrymen, was not to be destroyed either by force or by fraud, he resolved, as Jugurtha was of an active disposition, and eager for military reputation, to expose him to dangers in the field, and thus make trial of fortune. During the Numantine war, therefore, when he was sending supplies of horse and foot to the Romans, he gave him the command of the Numidians, whom he despatched into Spain, hoping that he would certainly perish, either by an ostentatious display of his bravery, or by the merciless hand of the enemy. But this project had a very different result from that which he had expected. For when Jugurtha, who was of an active and penetrating intellect, had learned the disposition of Publius Scipio, the Roman general, and the character of the enemy, he quickly rose, by great exertion and vigilance, by modestly submitting to orders, and frequently exposing himself to dangers, to such a degree of reputation, that he was greatly beloved by our men, and extremely dreaded by the Numantines. He was indeed, what is peculiarly difficult, both brave in action, and wise in council; qualities, of which the one, from forethought, generally produces fear, and the other, from confidence, rashness. The general, accordingly, managed almost every difficult matter by the aid of Jugurtha, numbered him among his friends, and grew daily more and more attached to him, as a man whose advice and whose efforts were never useless. With such merits were joined generosity of disposition, and readiness of wit, by which he united to himself many of the Romans in intimate friendship.
There were at that time, in our army, a number of officers, some of low, and some of high birth, to whom wealth was more attractive than virtue or honour; men who were attached to certain parties, and of consequence in their own country; but, among the allies, rather distinguished than respected. These persons inflamed the mind of Jugurtha, of itself sufficiently aspiring, by assuring him, “that if Micipsa should die, he might have the kingdom of Numidia to himself; for that he was possessed of eminent merit, and that anything might be purchased at Rome.”
When Numantia, however, was destroyed, and Scipio had determined to dismiss the auxiliary troops, and to return to Rome, he led Jugurtha, after having honoured him, in a public assembly, with the noblest presents and applauses, into his own tent; where he privately admonished him “to court the friendship of the Romans rather by attention to them as a body, than by practising on individuals; to bribe no one, as what belonged to many could not without danger be bought from a few; and adding that, if he would but trust to his own merits, glory and regal power would spontaneously fall to his lot; but, should he proceed too rashly, he would only, by the influence of his money, hasten his own ruin.”
Having thus spoken, he took leave of him, giving him a letter, which he was to present to Micipsa, and of which the following was the purport: “The merit of your nephew Jugurtha, in the war against Numantia, has been eminently distinguished; a fact which I am sure will afford you pleasure. He is dear to us for his services, and we shall strive, with our utmost efforts, to make him equally dear to the senate and people of Rome. As a friend, I sincerely congratulate you; you have a kinsman worthy of yourself, and of his grandfather Masinissa.”
Micipsa, when he found, from the letter of the general, that what he had already heard reported was true, being moved, both by the merit of the youth and by the interest felt for him by Scipio, altered his purpose, and endeavoured to win Jugurtha by kindnesses. He accordingly, in a short time, adopted him as his son, and made him, by his will, joint-heir with his own children.
A few years afterwards, when, being debilitated by age and disease, he perceived that the end of his life was at hand, he is said, in the presence of his friends and relations, and of Adherbal and Hiempsal his sons, to have spoken with Jugurtha in the following manner:
“I received you, Jugurtha, at a very early age, into my kingdom, at a time when you had lost your father, and were without prospects or resources, expecting that, in return for my kindness, I should not be less loved by you than by my own children, if I should have any. Nor have my anticipations deceived me; for, to say nothing of your other great and noble deeds, you have lately, on your return from Numantia, brought honour and glory both to me and my kingdom; by your bravery, you have rendered the Romans, from being previously our friends, more friendly to us than ever; the name of our family is revived in Spain; and, finally, what is most difficult among mankind, you have suppressed envy by pre-eminent merit.
“And now, since nature is putting a period to my life, I exhort and conjure you, by this right hand, and by the fidelity which you owe to my kingdom, to regard these princes, who are your cousins by birth, and your brothers by my generosity, with sincere affection; and not to be more anxious to attach to yourself strangers, than to retain the love of those connected with you by blood. It is not armies, or treasures, that form the defences of a kingdom, but friends, whom you can neither command by force nor purchase with gold; for they are acquired only by good offices and integrity. And who can be a greater friend than one brother to another? Or what stranger will you find faithful, if you are at enmity with your own family? I leave you a kingdom, which will be strong if you act honourably, but weak, if you are ill-affected to each other; for by concord even small states are increased, but by discord, even the greatest fall to nothing.
“But on you, Jugurtha, who are superior in age and wisdom, it is incumbent, more than on your brothers, to be cautious that nothing of a contrary tendency may arise; for, in all disputes, he that is the stronger, even though he receive the injury, appears, because his power is greater, to have inflicted it. And do you, Adherbal and Hiempsal, respect and regard a kinsman of such a character; imitate his virtues, and make it your endeavour to show that I have not adopted a better son than those whom I have begotten.”
To this address, Jugurtha, though he knew that the king had spoken insincerely, and though he was himself revolving thoughts of a far different nature, yet replied with good feeling, suitable to the occasion. A few days afterwards Micipsa died.
When the princes had performed his funeral with due magnificence, they met together to hold a discussion on the general condition of their affairs. Hiempsal, the youngest, who was naturally violent, and who had previously shown contempt for the mean birth of Jugurtha, as being inferior on his mother’s side, sat down on the right hand of Adherbal, in order to prevent Jugurtha from being the middle one of the three, which is regarded by the Numidians as the seat of honour. Being urged by his brother, however, to yield to superior age, he at length removed, but with reluctance, to the other seat.
In the course of this conference, after a long debate about the administration of the kingdom, Jugurtha suggested, among other measures, “that all the acts and decrees made in the last five years should be annulled, as Micipsa, during that period, had been enfeebled by age, and scarcely sound in intellect.” Hiempsal replied, “that he was exceedingly pleased with the proposal, since Jugurtha himself, within the last three years, had been adopted as joint-heir to the throne.” This repartee sunk deeper into the mind of Jugurtha than any one imagined. From that very time, accordingly, being agitated with resentment and jealousy, he began to meditate and concert schemes, and to think of nothing but projects for secretly cutting off Hiempsal. But his plans proving slow in operation, and his angry feeling remaining unabated, he resolved to execute his purpose by any means whatsoever.
At the first meeting of the princes, of which I have just spoken, it had been resolved, in consequence of their disagreement, that the treasures should be divided among them, and that limits should be set to the jurisdiction of each. Days were accordingly appointed for both these purposes, but the earlier of the two for the division of the money. The princes, in the mean time, retired into separate places of abode in the neighbourhood of the treasury. Hiempsal, residing in the town of Thirmida, happened to occupy the house of a man, who, being Jugurtha’s chief lictor, had always been liked and favoured by his master. This man, thus opportunely presented as an instrument, Jugurtha loaded with promises, and induced him to go to his house, as if for the purpose of looking over it, and provide himself with false keys to the gates; for the true ones used to be given to Hiempsal; adding, that he himself, when circumstances should call for his presence, would be at the place with a large body of men. This commission the Numidian speedily executed, and, according to his instructions, admitted Jugurtha’s men in the night, who, as soon as they had entered the house, went different ways in quest of the prince; some of his attendants they killed while asleep, and others as they met them; they searched into secret places, broke open those that were shut, and filled the whole premises with uproar and tumult. Hiempsal, after a time, was found concealed in the hut of a maid-servant, where, in his alarm and ignorance of the locality, he had at first taken refuge. The Numidians, as they had been ordered, brought his head to Jugurtha.
The report of so atrocious an outrage was soon spread throughout Africa. Fear seized on Adherbal, and on all who had been subject to Micipsa. The Numidians divided into two parties, the greater number following Adherbal, but the more warlike, Jugurtha; who, accordingly, armed as large a force as he could, brought several cities, partly by force and partly by their own consent, under his power, and prepared to make himself sovereign of the whole of Numidia. Adherbal, though he had sent ambassadors to Rome, to inform the senate of his brother’s murder and his own circumstances, yet, relying on the number of his troops, prepared for an armed resistance. When the matter, however, came to a contest, he was defeated, and fled from the field of battle into our province, and from thence hastened to Rome.
Jugurtha, having thus accomplished his purposes, and reflecting, at leisure, on the crime which he had committed, began to feel a dread of the Roman people, against whose resentment he had no hopes of security but in the avarice of the nobility, and in his own wealth. A few days afterwards, therefore, he despatched ambassadors to Rome, with a profusion of gold and silver, whom he directed, in the first place, to make abundance of presents to his old friends, and then to procure him new ones; and not to hesitate, in short, to effect whatever could be done by bribery.
When these deputies had arrived at Rome, and had sent large presents, according to the prince’s direction, to his intimate friends, and to others whose influence was at that time powerful, so remarkable a change ensued, that Jugurtha, from being an object of the greatest odium, grew into great regard and favour with the nobility; who, partly allured with hope, and partly with actual largesses, endeavoured, by soliciting the members of the senate individually, to prevent any severe measures from being adopted against him. When the ambassadors, accordingly, felt sure of success, the senate, on a fixed day, gave audience to both parties. On that occasion, Adherbal, as I have understood, spoke to the following effect:
“My father Micipsa, Conscript Fathers, enjoined me, on his death-bed, to look upon the kingdom of Numidia as mine only by deputation; to consider the right and authority as belonging to you; to endeavour, at home and in the field, to be as serviceable to the Roman people as possible; and to regard you as my kindred and relatives: saying that, if I observed these injunctions, I should find, in your friendship, armies, riches, and all necessary defences of my realm. By these precepts I was proceeding to regulate my conduct, when Jugurtha, the most abandoned of all men whom the earth contains, setting at nought your authority, expelled me, the grandson of Masinissa, and the hereditary ally and friend of the Roman people, from my kingdom and all my possessions.
“Since I was thus to be reduced to such an extremity of wretchedness, I could wish that I were able to implore you aid, Conscript Fathers, rather for the sake of my own services than those of my ancestors; I could wish, indeed, above all, that acts of kindness were due to me from the Romans, of which I should not stand in need; and, next to this, that, if I required your services, I might receive them as my due. But as integrity is no defence in itself, and as I had no power to form the character of Jugurtha, I have fled to you, Conscript Fathers, to whom, what is the most grievous of all things, I am compelled to become a burden before I have been an assistance.
“Other princes have been received into your friendship after having been conquered in war, of have solicited an alliance with you in circumstances of distress; but our family commenced its league with the Romans in the war with Carthage, at a time when their faith was a greater object of attraction than their fortune. Suffer not, then, O Conscript Fathers, a descendant of that family to implore aid from you in vain. If I had no other plea for obtaining your assistance but my wretched fortune; nothing to urge, but that, having been recently a king, powerful by birth, by character, and by resources, I am now dishonoured, afflicted, destitute, and dependent on the aid of others, it would yet become the dignity of Rome to protect me from injury, and to allow no man’s dominions to be increased by crime. But I am driven from those very territories which the Roman people gave to my ancestors, and from which my father and grandfather, in conjunction with yourselves, expelled Syphax and the Carthaginians. It is what you bestowed that has been wrested from me; in my wrongs you are insulted.
“Unhappy man that I am! Has your kindness, O my father Micipsa, come to this, that he whom you made equal with your children, and a sharer of your kingdom, should become, above all others, the destroyer of your race? Shall our family, then, never be at peace? Shall we always be harassed with war, bloodshed, and exile? Whilst the Carthaginians continued in power, we were necessarily exposed to all manner of troubles; for the enemy were on our frontiers; you, our friends, were at a distance; and all our dependence was on our arms. But after that pest was extirpated, we were happy in the enjoyment of tranquillity, as having no enemies but such as you should happen to appoint us. But lo! on a sudden, Jugurtha, stalking forth with intolerable audacity, wickedness, and arrogance, and having put to death my brother, his own cousin, made his territory, in the first place, the prize of his guilt; and next, being unable to ensnare me with similar stratagems, he rendered me, when under your rule I expected anything rather than violence or war, an exile, as you see, from my country and my home, the prey of poverty and misery, and safer anywhere than in my own kingdom.
“I was always of opinion, Conscript Fathers, as I had often heard my father observe, that those who cultivated your friendship might indeed have an arduous service to perform, but would be of all people the most secure. What our family could do for you, it has done; it has supported you in all your wars; and it is for you to provide for our safety in time of peace. Our father left two of us, brothers; a third, Jugurtha, he thought would be attached to us by the benefits conferred upon him; but one of us has been murdered, and I, the other, have scarcely escaped the hand of lawlessness. What course can I now take? Unhappy that I am, to what place, rather than another, shall I betake myself? All the props of our family are extinct; my father, of necessity, has paid the debt of nature; a kinsman, whom least of all men it became, has wickedly taken the life of my brother; and as for my other relatives, and friends, and connexions, various forms of destruction have overtaken them. Seized by Jugurtha, some have been crucified, and some thrown to wild beasts, while a few, whose lives have been spared, are shut up in the darkness of the dungeon, and drag on, amid suffering and sorrow, an existence more grievous than death itself.
“If all that I have lost, or all that, from being friendly, has become hostile to me, remained unchanged, yet, in case of any sudden calamity, it is of you that I should still have to implore assistance, to whom, from the greatness of your empire, justice and injustice in general should be objects of regard. And at the present time, when I am exiled from my country and my home, when I am left alone, and destitute of all that is suitable to my dignity, to whom can I go, or to whom shall I appeal, but to you? Shall I go to nations and kings, who, from our friendship with Rome, are all hostile to my family? Could I go, indeed, to any place where there are not abundance of hostile monuments of my ancestors? Will any one, who has ever been at enmity with you, take pity upon me?
“Masinissa, moreover, instructed us, Conscript Fathers, to cultivate no friendship but that of Rome, to adopt no new leagues or alliances, as we should find, in your good-will, abundance of efficient support; while, if the fortune of your empire should change, we must sink together with it. But, by your own merits, and the favour of the gods, you are great and powerful; the whole world regards you with favour and yields to your power; and you are the better able, in consequence, to attend to the grievances of your allies. My only fear is, that private friendship for Jugurtha, too little understood, may lead any of you astray; for his partisans, I hear, are doing their utmost in his behalf, soliciting and importuning you individually, to pass no decision against one who is absent, and whose cause is yet untried; and saying that I state what is false, and only pretend to be an exile, when I might, if I pleased, have remained still in my kingdom. But would that I could see him.
“Would that death could be thought an honourable termination to my misfortunes, that I might not seem to live an object of contempt, if, sinking under my afflictions, I tamely submit to injustice. But now I can neither live with pleasure, nor can die without disgrace. I implore you, therefore, Conscript Fathers, by your regard for yourselves, for your children, and for your parents, and by the majesty of the Roman people, to grant me succour in my distress, to arrest the progress of injustice, and not to suffer the kingdom of Numidia, which is your own property, to sink into ruin through villany and the slaughter of our family.”
When the prince had concluded his speech, the ambassadors of Jugurtha, depending more on their money than their cause, replied, in a few words, “that Hiempsal had been put to death by the Numidians for his cruelty; that Adherbal, commencing war of his own accord, complained, after he was defeated, of being unable to do injury; and that Jugurtha intreated the senate not to consider him a different person from what he had been known to be at Numantia, nor to set the assertions of the enemy above his own conduct.”
Both parties then withdrew from the senate-house, and the senate immediately proceeded to deliberate. The partisans of the ambassadors, with a great many others, corrupted by their influence, expressed contempt for the statements of Adherbal, extolled with the highest encomiums the merits of Jugurtha, and exerted themselves as strenuously, with their interest and eloquence, in defence of the guilt and infamy of another, as they would have striven for their own honour. A few, however, on the other hand, to whom right and justice were of more estimation than wealth, gave their opinion that Adherbal should be assisted, and the murder of Hiempsal severely avenged. Of all these the most forward was Æmilius Scaurus, a man of noble birth and great energy, but factious, and ambitious of power, honour, and wealth; yet an artful concealer of his own vices. He, seeing that the bribery of Jugurtha was notorious and shameless, and fearing that, as in such cases often happens, its scandalous profusion might excite the public odium, restrained himself from the indulgence of his ruling passion.
Yet that party gained the superiority in the senate, which preferred money and interest to justice. A decree was made, “that ten commissioners should divide the kingdom, which Micipsa had possessed, between Jugurtha and Adherbal.” Of this commission the leading person was Lucius Opimius, a man of distinction, and of great influence at that time in the senate, from having in his consulship, on the death of Caius Gracchus and Marcus Fulvius Flaccus, prosecuted the victory of the nobility over the plebeians with great severity.
Jugurtha, though he had already counted Scaurus among his friends at Rome, yet received him with the most studied ceremony, and, by presents and promises, wrought on him so effectually, that he preferred the prince’s interest to his own character, honour, and all other considerations. The rest of the commissioners he assailed in a similar way, and gained over most of them; by a few only integrity was more regarded than lucre. In the division of the kingdom, that part of Numidia which borders on Mauretania, and which is superior in fertility and population, was allotted to Jugurtha; of the other part, which, though better furnished with harbours and buildings, was more valuable in appearance than in reality, Adherbal became the possessor.
My subject seems to require of me, in this place, a brief account of the situation of Africa, and of those nations in it with whom we have had war or alliances. But of those tracts and countries, which, from their heat, or difficulty of access, or extent of desert, have been but little visited, I cannot possibly give any exact description. Of the rest I shall speak with all possible brevity.
In the division of the earth, most writers consider Africa as a third part; a few admit only two divisions, Asia and Europe, and include Africa in Europe. It is bounded, on the west, by the strait connecting our sea with the ocean] Fretum nostri maris et oceani. That is, the Fretum Gaditanum, or Strait of Gibraltar. By our sea, he means the Mediterranean. See Pomp. Mela, i., 1.</ref>; on the east, by a vast sloping tract, which the natives call the Catabathmos. The sea is boisterous, and deficient in harbours; the soil is fertile in corn, and good for pasturage, but unproductive of trees. There is a scarcity of water both from rain and from land-springs. The natives are healthy, swift of foot, and able to endure fatigue. Most of them die by the gradual decay of age, except such as perish by the sword or beasts of prey; for disease finds but few victims. Animals of a venomous nature they have in great numbers.
Concerning the original inhabitants of Africa, the settlers that afterwards joined them, and the manner in which they intermingled, I shall offer the following brief account, which, though it differs from the general opinion, is that which was interpreted to me from the Punic volumes said to have belonged to King Hiempsal, and which the inhabitants of that country believe to be consistent with fact. For the truth of the statement, however, the writers themselves must be responsible.
Africa, then, was originally occupied by the Getulians and Libyans, rude and uncivilised tribes, who subsisted on the flesh of wild animals, or, like cattle, on the herbage of the soil. They were controlled neither by customs, laws, nor the authority of any ruler; they wandered about, without fixed habitations, and slept in the abodes to which night drove them. But after Hercules, as the Africans think, perished in Spain, his army, which was composed of various nations, having lost its leader, and many candidates severally claiming the command of it, was speedily dispersed. Of its constituent troops, the Medes, Persians, and Armenians, having sailed over into Africa, occupied the parts nearest to our sea. The Persians, however, settled more towards the ocean, and used the inverted keels of their vessels for huts, there being no wood in the country, and no opportunity of obtaining it, either by purchase or barter, from the Spaniards; for a wide sea, and an unknown tongue, were barriers to all intercourse. These, by degrees, formed intermarriages with the Getulians; and because from constantly trying different soils, they were perpetually shifting their abodes, they called themselves Numidians. And to this day the huts of the Numidian boors, which they call mapalia, are of an oblong shape, with curved roofs; resembling the hulls of ships.
The Medes and Armenians connected themselves with the Libyans, who dwelt near the African sea; while the Getulians lay more to the sun, not far from the torrid heats; and these soon built themselves towns, as, being separated from Spain only by a strait, they proceeded to open an intercourse with its inhabitants. The name of Medes the Libyans gradually corrupted, changing it, in their barbarous tongue, into Moors.
Of the Persians the power rapidly increased; and at length, the children, through excess of population, separating from the parents, they took possession, under the name of Numidians, of those regions bordering on Carthage which are now called Numidia. In process of time, the two parties, each assisting the other, reduced the neighbouring tribes, by force or fear, under their sway; but those who had spread towards our sea, made the greater conquests; for the Libyans are less warlike than the Getulians. At last nearly all lower Africa was occupied by the Numidians; and all the conquered tribes were merged in the nation and name of their conquerors.
At a later period, the Phœnicians, some of whom wished to lessen their numbers at home, and others, ambitious of empire, engaged the populace, and such as were eager for change, to follow them, founded Hippo, Adrumentum, Leptis, and other cities, on the sea-coast; which, soon growing powerful, became partly a support, and partly an honour, to their parent state. Of Carthage I think it better to be silent, than to say but little; especially as time bids me hasten to other matters.
Next to the Catabathmos, then, which divides Egypt from Africa, the first city along the sea-coast is Cyrene, a colony of Theræans; after which are the two Syrtes, with Leptis between them; then the Altars of the Philæni, which the Carthaginians considered the boundary of their dominion on the side of Egypt; beyond these are the other Punic towns. The other regions, as far as Mauretania, the Numidians occupy; the Moors are nearest to Spain. To the south of Numidia, as we are informed, are the Getulians, of whom some live in huts, and others lead a vagrant and less civilised life; beyond these are the Ethiopians; and farther on, regions parched by the heat of the sun.
At the time of the Jugurthine war, most of the Punic towns, and the territories which Carthage had lately possessed, were under the government of Roman prætors; a great part of the Getulians, and Numidia as far as the river Mulucha, were subject to Jugurtha; while the whole of the Moors were governed by Bocchus, a king who knew nothing of the Romans but their name, and who, before this period, was as little known to us, either in war or peace. Of Africa and its inhabitants I have now said all that my narrative requires.
When the commissioners, after dividing the kingdom, had left Africa, and Jugurtha saw that, contrary to his apprehensions, he had obtained the object of his crimes; he then, being convinced of the truth of what he had heard from his friends at Numantia, “that all things were purchasable at Rome,” and being also encouraged by the promises of those whom he had recently loaded with presents, directed his views to the domain of Adherbal. He was himself bold and warlike, while the other, at whose destruction he aimed, was quiet, unfit for arms, of a mild temper, a fit subject for injustice, and a prey to fear rather than an object of it. Jugurtha, accordingly, with a powerful force, made a sudden irruption into his dominions, took several prisoners, with cattle and other booty, set fire to the buildings, and made hostile demonstrations against several places with his cavalry. He then retreated, with all his followers, into his own kingdom, expecting that Adherbal, roused by such provocation, would avenge his wrongs by force, and thus furnish a pretext for war. But Adherbal, thinking himself unable to meet Jugurtha in the field, and relying on the friendship of the Romans more than on the Numidians, merely sent ambassadors to Jugurtha to complain of the outrage; and, although they brought back but an insolent reply, yet he resolved to endure anything rather than have recourse to war, which, when he attempted it before, had ended in his defeat. By such conduct the eagerness of Jugurtha was not at all allayed; for he had now, indeed, in imagination, possessed himself of all Adherbal’s dominions. He therefore renewed hostilities, not, as before, with a predatory band, but at the head of a large army which he had collected, and openly aspired to the sovereignty of all Numidia. Wherever he marched, he ravaged the towns and the fields, drove off booty, and raised confidence in his own man and dismay among the enemy.
Adherbal, when he found that matters had arrived at such a point, that he must either abandon his dominions, or defend them by force of arms, collected an army from necessity, and advanced to meet Jugurtha. Both armies took up their position near the town of Cirta, at no great distance from the sea; but, as evening was approaching, encamped without coming to an engagement. But when the night was far advanced, and twilight was beginning to appear, the troops of Jugurtha, at a given signal, rushed into the camp of the enemy, whom they routed and put to flight, some half asleep, and others resuming their arms. Adherbal, with a few of his cavalry, fled to Cirta; and, had there not been a number of Romans in the town, who repulsed his Numidian pursuers from the walls, the war between the two princes would have begun and ended on the same day.
Jugurtha proceeded to invest the town, and attempted to storm it with the aid of mantelets, towers, and every kind of machines; being anxious, above all things, to take it before the ambassadors could arrive at Rome, who, he was informed, had been despatched thither by Adherbal before the battle was fought. But as soon as the senate heard of their contention, three young men were sent as deputies into Africa, with directions to go to both of the princes, and to announce to them, in the words of the senate and people of Rome, “that it was their will and resolution that they should lay down their arms, and settle their disputes rather by arbitration than by the sword; since to act thus would be to the honour both of the Romans and themselves.”
These deputies soon arrived in Africa, using the greater despatch, because, whilst they were preparing for their journey, a report was spread at Rome of the battle which had been fought, and of the siege of Cirta; but this report told much less than the truth. Jugurtha, having given them an audience, replied, “that nothing was of greater weight with him, nothing more respected, than the authority of the senate; that it had been his endeavour, from his youth, to deserve the esteem of all men of worth; that he had gained the favour of Publius Scipio, a man of the highest eminence, not by dishonourable practices, but by merit; that, for the same good qualities, and not from want of heirs to the throne, he had been adopted by Micipsa; but that, the more honourable and spirited his conduct had been, the less could his feelings endure injustice; that Adherbal had formed designs against his life, on discovering which, he had counteracted his malice; that the Romans would act neither justly nor reasonably, if they withheld from him the common right of nations; and, in conclusion, that he would soon send ambassadors to Rome to explain the whole of his proceedings.” On this understanding, both parties separated. Of addressing Adherbal the deputies had no opportunity.
Jugurtha, as soon as he thought that they had quitted Africa, surrounded the walls of Cirta, which, from the nature of its situation, he was unable to take by assault, with a rampart and a trench; he also erected towers, and manned them with soldiers; he made attempts on the place, by force or by stratagem, day and night; he held out bribes, and sometimes menaces, to the besieged; he roused his men, by exhortations, to efforts of valour, and resorted, with the utmost perseverance, to every possible expedient.
Adherbal, on the other hand, seeing that his affairs were in a desperate condition, that his enemy was determined on his ruin, that there was no hope of succour, and that the siege, from want of provisions, could not be long protracted, selected, from among those who had fled with him to Cirta, two of his most resolute supporters, whom he induced, by numerous promises, and an affecting representation of his distress, to make their way in the night, through the enemy’s lines, to the nearest point of the coast, and from thence to Rome.
The Numidians, in a few days, executed their commission; and a letter from Adherbal was read in the senate, of which the following was the purport:
“It is not through my own fault, Conscript Fathers, that I so often send requests to you; but the violence of Jugurtha compels me; whom so strong a desire for my destruction has seized, that he pays no regard either to you or to the immortal gods; my blood he covets beyond everything. Five months, in consequence, have I, the ally and friend of the Roman people, been besieged with an armed force; neither the remembrance of my father Micipsa’s benefits, nor your decrees, are of any avail for my relief; and whether I am more closely pressed by the sword or by family, I am unable to say.
“From writing further concerning Jugurtha, my present condition deters me; for I have experienced, even before, that little credit is given to the unfortunate. Yet I can perceive that his views extend further than to myself, and that he does not expect to possess, at the same time, your friendship and my kingdom; which of the two he thinks the more desirable, must be manifest to every one. For, in the first place, he murdered my brother Hiempsal; and, in the next, expelled me from my dominions; which, however, may be regarded as our own wrongs, and as having no reference to you. But now he occupies your kingdom with an army; he keeps me, whom you appointed a king over the Numidians, in a state of blockade; and in what estimation he holds the words of your ambassadors, my perils may serve to show. What then is left, except your arms, that can make an impression upon him?
“I could wish, indeed, that what I now write, as well as the complaints which I lately made before the senate, were false, rather than that my present distress should confirm the truth of my statements. But since I am born to be an example of Jugurtha’s villany, I do not now beg a release from death or distress, but only from the tyranny of an enemy, and from bodily torture. Respecting the kingdom of Numidia, which is your own property, determine as you please, but if the memory of my grandfather Masinissa is still cherished by you, deliver me, I intreat you, by the majesty of your empire, and by the sacred ties of friendship, from the inhuman hands of Jugurtha.”
When this letter was read, there were some who thought that an army should be despatched into Africa, and relief afforded to Adherbal, as soon as possible; and that the senate, in the mean time, should give judgment on the conduct of Jugurtha, in not having obeyed the ambassadors. But by the partisans of Jugurtha, the same that had before supported his cause, effectual exertions were made to prevent any decree from being passed; and thus the public interest, as is too frequently the case, was defeated by private influence.
An embassy was, however, despatched into Africa, consisting of men of advanced years, and of noble birth, and who had filled the highest offices of the state; among whom was Marcus Scaurus, already mentioned, a man who had held the consulship, and who was at that time chief of the senate. These ambassadors, as their business was an affair of public odium, and as they were urged by the entreaties of the Numidians, embarked in three days; and having soon arrived at Utica, sent a letter from thence to Jugurtha, desiring him “to come to the province as quickly as possible, as they were deputed by the senate to meet him.”
Jugurtha, when he found that men of eminence, whose influence at Rome he knew to be powerful, were come to put a stop to his proceedings, was at first perplexed, and distracted between fear and cupidity. He dreaded the displeasure of the senate, if he should disobey the ambassadors; while his eager spirit, blinded by the lust of power, hurried him on to complete the injustice which he had begun. At length the evil incitements of ambition prevailed. He accordingly drew his army round the city of Cirta, and endeavoured, with his utmost efforts, to force an entrance; having the strongest hopes, that, by dividing the attention of the enemy’s troops, he should be able, by force or artifice, to secure an opportunity of success. When his attempts, however, were unavailing, and he found himself unable, as he had designed, to get Adherbal into his power before he met the ambassadors, fearing that, by further delay, he might irritate Scaurus, of whom he stood in great dread, he proceeded with a small body of cavalry into the Province. Yet, though serious menaces were repeated to him in the name of the senate, because he had not desisted from the siege, nevertheless, after spending a long time in conference, the ambassadors departed without making any impression upon him.
When news of this result was brought to Cirta, the Italians, by whose exertions the city had been defended, and who trusted that, if a surrender were made, they would be able, from respect to the greatness of the Roman power, to escape without personal injury, advised Adherbal to deliver himself and the city to Jugurtha, stipulating only that his life should be spared, and leaving all other matters to the cares of the senate. Adherbal, though he thought nothing less trustworthy than the honour of Jugurtha, yet, knowing that those who advised could also compel him if he resisted, surrendered the place according to their desire. Jugurtha immediately proceeded to put Adherbal to death with torture, and massacred all the inhabitants that were of age, whether Numidians or Italians, as each fell in the way of his troops.
When this outrage was reported at Rome, and became a matter of discussion in the senate, the former partisans of Jugurtha applied themselves, by interrupting the debates and protracting the time, sometimes exerting their interest, and sometimes quarrelling with particular members, to palliate the atrocity of the deed. And had not Caius Memmius, one of the tribunes of the people elect, a man of energy, and hostile to the power of the nobility, convinced the people of Rome that an attempt was being made, by the agency of a small faction, to have the crimes of Jugurtha pardoned, it is certain that the public indignation against him would have passed off under the protection of the debates; so powerful was party interest, and the influence of Jugurtha’s money. When the senate, however, from consciousness of misconduct, became afraid of the people, Numidia and Italy, by the Sempronian law, were appointed as provinces to the succeeding consuls, who were declared to be Publius Scipio Nasica, and Lucius Bestia Calpurnius. Numidia fell to Calpurnius, and Italy to Scipio. An army was then raised to be spent into Africa; and pay, and all other necessaries of war, were decreed for its use.
When Jugurtha received this news, which was utterly at variance with his expectations, as he had felt convinced that all things were purchasable at Rome, he sent his son, with two of his friends, as deputies to the senate, and directed them, like those whom he had sent on the murder of Hiempsal, to attack everybody with bribes. Upon the approach of these deputies to Rome, the senate was consulted by Bestia, whether they would allow them to be admitted within the gates; and the senate decreed, “that, unless they came to surrender Jugurtha’s kingdom and himself, they must quit Italy within the ten following days.” The consul directed this decree to be communicated to the Numidians, who consequently returned home without effecting their object.
Calpurnius, in the mean time, having raised an army, chose for his officers men of family and intrigue, hoping that whatever faults he might commit, would be screened by their influence; and among these was Scaurus, of whose disposition and character we have already spoken. There were, indeed, in our consul Calpurnius, many excellent qualities, both mental and personal, though avarice interfered with the exercise of them; he was patient of labour, of a penetrating intellect, of great foresight, not inexperienced in war, and extremely vigilant against danger and surprise.
The troops were conducted through Italy to Rhegium, from thence to Sicily, and from Sicily into Africa; and Calpurnius’s first step, after collecting provisions, was to invade Numidia with spirit, where he took many prisoners, and several towns, by force of arms.
But when Jugurtha began, through his emissaries, to tempt him with bribes, and to show the difficulties of the war which he had undertaken to conduct, his mind, corrupted with avarice, was easily altered. His accomplice, however, and manager in all his schemes, was Scaurus; who, though he had at first, when most of his party were corrupted, displayed violent hostility to Jugurtha, yet was afterwards seduced, by a vast sum of money, from integrity and honour to injustice and perfidy. Jugurtha, however, at first sought only to purchase a suspension of hostilities, expecting to be able, during the interval, to make some favourable impression, either by bribery or by interest, at Rome; but when he heard that Scaurus was co-operating with Calpurnius, he was elated with great hopes of regaining peace, and resolved upon a conference with them in person respecting the terms of it. In the mean time, for the sake of giving confidence to Jugurtha, Sextus the quæstor was despatched by the consul to Vaga, one of the prince’s towns; the pretext for his journey being the receiving of corn, which Calpurnius had openly demanded from Jugurtha’s emissaries, on the ground that a truce was observed through their delay to make a surrender. Jugurtha then, as he had determined, paid a visit to the consul’s camp, where, having made a short address to the council, respecting the odium cast upon his conduct, and his desire for a capitulation, he arranged other matters with Bestia and Scaurus in secret; and the next day, as if by an evident majority of voices, he was formally allowed to surrender. But, as was demanded in the hearing of the council, thirty elephants, a considerable number of cattle and horses, and a small sum of money, were delivered into the hands of the quæstor. Calpurnius then returned to Rome to preside at the election of magistrates, and peace was observed throughout Numidia and the Roman army.
When rumour had made known the affairs transacted in Africa, and the mode in which they had been brought to pass, the conduct of the consul became a subject of discussion in every place and company at Rome. Among the people there was violent indignation; as to the senators, whether they would ratify so flagitious a proceeding, or annul the act of the consul, was a matter of doubt. The influence of Scaurus, as he was said to be the supporter and accomplice of Bestia, was what chiefly restrained the senate from acting with justice and honour. But Caius Memmius, of whose boldness of spirit, and hatred to the power of the nobility, I have already spoken, excited the people by his harangues, during the perplexity and delay of the senators, to take vengeance on the authors of the treaty; he exhorted them not to abandon the public interest or their own liberty; he set before them the many tyrannical and violent proceedings of the nobles, and omitted no art to inflame the popular passions. But as the eloquence of Memmius, at that period, had great reputation and influence, I have thought proper to give in full one out of many of his speeches; and I take, in preference to others, that which he delivered in the assembly of the people, after the return of Bestia, in words to the following effect:
“Were not my zeal for the good of the state, my fellow-citizens, superior to every other feeling, there are many considerations which would deter me from appearing in your cause; I allude to the power of the opposite party, your own tameness of spirit, the absence of all justice, and, above all, the fact that integrity is attended with more danger than honour. Indeed, it grieves me to relate, how, during the last fifteen years, you have been a sport to the arrogance of an oligarchy; how dishonourably, and how utterly unavenged, your defenders have perished; and how your spirit has become degenerate by sloth and indolence; for not even now, when your enemies are in your power, will you rouse yourselves to action, but continue still to stand in awe of those to whom you should be a terror.
“Yet, notwithstanding this state of things, I feel prompted to make an attack on the power of that faction. That liberty of speech, therefore, which has been left me by my father, I shall assuredly exert against them; but whether I shall use it in vain, or for your advantage, must, my fellow-citizens, depend upon yourselves. I do not, however, exhort you, as your ancestors have often done, to rise in arms against injustice. There is at present no need of violence, no need of secession; for your tyrants must work their fall by their own misconduct.
“After the murder of Tiberius Gracchus, whom they accused of aspiring to be king, persecutions were instituted against the common people of Rome; and after the slaughter of Caius Gracchus and Marcus Fulvius, many of your order were put to death in prison. But let us leave these proceedings out of the question; let us admit that to restore their rights to the people, was to aspire to sovereignty; let us allow that what cannot be avenged without shedding the blood of citizens, was done with justice. You have seen with silent indignation, however, in past years, the treasury pillaged; you have seen kings, and free people, paying tribute to a small party of Patricians, in whose hands were both the highest honours and the greatest wealth; but to have carried on such proceedings with impunity, they now deem but a small matter; and, at last, your laws and your honour, with every civil and religious obligation, have been sacrificed for the benefit of your enemies. Nor do they, who have done these things, show either shame or contrition, but parade proudly before your faces, displaying their sacerdotal dignities, their consulships, and some of them their triumphs, as if they regarded them as marks of honour, and not as fruits of their dishonesty. Slaves, purchased with money, will not submit to unjust commands from their masters; yet you, my fellow-citizens, who are born to empire, tamely endure oppression.
“But who are these, that have thus taken the government into their hands? Men of the most abandoned character, of blood-stained hands, of insatiable avarice, of enormous guilt, and of matchless pride; men by whom integrity, reputation, public spirit, and indeed everything, whether honourable or dishonourable, is converted to a means of gain. Some of them make it their defence that they have killed tribunes of the people; others, that they have instituted unjust prosecutions; others, that they have shed your blood; and thus, the more atrocities each has committed, the greater is his security; while your oppressors, whom the same desires, the same aversions, and the same fears, combine in strict union (a union which among good men is friendship, but among the bad confederacy in guilt), have excited in you, through your want of spirit, that terror which they ought to feel for their own crimes.
“But if your concern to preserve your liberty were as great as their ardour to increase their power of oppression, the state would not be distracted as it is at present; and the marks of favour which proceed from you, would be conferred, not on the most shameless, but on the most deserving. Your forefathers, in order to assert their rights and establish their authority, twice seceded in arms to Mount Aventine; and will not you exert yourselves, to the utmost of your power, in defence of that liberty which you received from them? Will you not display so much the more spirit in the cause, from the reflection that it is a greater disgrace to lose what has been gained, than not to have gained it at all?
“But some will ask me, ‘What course of conduct, then, would you advise us to pursue?’ I would advise you to inflict punishment on those who have sacrificed the interests of their country to the enemy; not, indeed, by arms, or any violence (which would be more unbecoming, however, for you to inflict than for them to suffer), but by prosecutions, and by the evidence of Jugurtha himself, who, if he has really surrendered, will doubtless obey your summons; whereas, if he shows contempt for it, you will at once judge what sort of a peace or surrender it is, from which springs impunity to Jugurtha for his crimes, immense wealth to a few men in power, and loss and infamy to the republic.
“But perhaps you are not yet weary of the tyranny of these men; perhaps these times please you less than those when kingdoms, provinces, laws, rights, the administration of justice, war and peace, and indeed everything civil and religious, was in the hands of an oligarchy; while you, that is, the people of Rome, though unconquered by foreign enemies, and rulers of all nations around, were content with being allowed to live; for which of you had spirit to throw off your slavery? For myself, indeed, though I think it most disgraceful to receive an injury without resenting it, yet I could easily allow you to pardon these basest of traitors, because they are your fellow-citizens, were it not certain that your indulgence would end in your destruction. For such is their presumption, that to escape punishment for their misdeeds will have but little effect upon them, unless they be deprived, at the same time, of the power of doing mischief; and endless anxiety will remain for you, if you shall have to reflect that you must either be slaves or preserve your liberty by force of arms.
“Of mutual trust, or concord, what hope is there? They wish to be lords, you desire to be free; they seek to inflict injury, you to repel it; they treat your allies as enemies, your enemies as allies. With feelings so opposite, can peace or friendship subsist between you? I warn, therefore, and exhort you, not to allow such enormous dishonesty to go unpunished. It is not an embezzlement of the public money that has been committed; nor is it a forcible extortion of money from your allies; offences which, though great, are now, from their frequency, considered as nothing; but the authority of the senate, and your own power, have been sacrificed to the bitterest of enemies, and the public interest has been betrayed for money, both at home and abroad; and unless these misdeeds be investigated, and punishment be inflicted on the guilty, what remains for us but to live the slaves of those who committed them? For those who do what they will with impunity are undoubtedly kings.
“I do not, however, wish to encourage you, O Romans, to be better satisfied at finding your fellow-citizens guilty than innocent, but merely to warn you not to bring ruin on the good, by suffering the bad to escape. It is far better, in any government, to be unmindful of a service than of an injury; for a good man, if neglected, only becomes less active; but a bad man, more daring. Besides, if the crimes of the wicked are suppressed, the state will seldom need extraordinary support from the virtuous.”
By repeating these and similar sentiments, Memmius prevailed on the people to send Lucius Cassius, who was then prætor, to Jugurtha, and to bring him, under guarantee of the public faith, to Rome, in order that, by the prince’s evidence, the misconduct of Scaurus and the rest, whom they charged with having taken bribes, might more easily be made manifest.
During the course of these proceedings at Rome, those whom Bestia had left in Numidia in command of the army, following the example of their general, had been guilty of many scandalous transactions. Some, seduced by gold, had restored Jugurtha his elephants; others had sold him his deserters; others had ravaged the lands of those at peace with us; so strong a spirit of rapacity, like the contagion of a pestilence, had pervaded the breasts of all.
Cassius, when the measure proposed by Memmius had been carried, and whilst all the nobility were in consternation, set out on his mission to Jugurtha, whom, alarmed as he was, and despairing of his fortune, from a sense of guilt, he admonished “that, since he had surrendered himself to the Romans, he had better make trial of their mercy than their power.” He also pledged his own word, which Jugurtha valued not less than that of the public, for his safety. Such, at that period, was the reputation of Cassius.
Jugurtha, accordingly, accompanied Cassius to Rome, but without any mark of royalty, and in the garb, as much as possible, of a suppliant; and, though he felt great confidence on his own part, and was supported by all those through whose power or villany he had accomplished his projects, he purchased, by a vast bribe, the aid of Caius Bæbius, a tribune of the people, by whose audacity he hoped to be protected against the law, and against all harm.
An assembly of the people being convoked, Memmius, although they were violently exasperated against Jugurtha (some demanding that he should be cast into prison, others that, unless he should name his accomplices in guilt, he should be put to death, according to the usage of their ancestors, as a public enemy), yet, regarding rather their character than their resentment, endeavoured to calm their turbulence and mitigate their rage; and assured them that, as far as depended on him, the public faith should not be broken. At length, when silence was obtained, he brought forward Jugurtha, and addressed them. He detailed the misdeeds of Jugurtha at Rome and in Numidia, and set forth his crimes towards his father and brothers; and admonished the prince, “that the Roman people, though they were well aware by whose support and agency he had acted, yet desired further testimony from himself; that, if he disclosed the truth, there was great hope for him in the honour and clemency of the Romans; but if he concealed it, he would certainly not save his accomplices, but ruin himself and his hopes for ever.”
But when Memmius had concluded his speech, and Jugurtha was expected to give his answer, Caius Bæbius, the tribune of the people, whom I have just noticed as having been bribed, enjoined the prince to hold his peace; and though the multitude, who formed the assembly, were desperately enraged, and endeavoured to terrify the tribune by outcries, by angry looks, by violent gestures, and by every other act to which anger prompts, his audacity was at last triumphant. The people, mocked and set at nought, withdrew from the place of assembly; and the confidence of Jugurtha, Bestia, and the others, whom this investigation had alarmed, was greatly augmented.
There was at this period in Rome a certain Numidian named Massiva, a son of Gulussa and grandson of Masinissa, who, from having been, in the dissensions among the princes, opposed to Jugurtha, had been obliged, after the surrender of Cirta and the murder of Adherbal, to make his escape out of Africa. Spurius Albinus, who was consul with Quintus Minucius Rufus the year after Bestia, prevailed upon this man, as he was of the family of Masinissa, and as odium and terror hung over Jugurtha for his crimes, to petition the senate for the kingdom of Numidia. Albinus, being eager for the conduct of a war, was desirous that affairs should be disturbed, rather than sink into tranquillity; especially as, in the division of the provinces, Numidia had fallen to himself, and Macedonia to Minucius.
When Massiva proceeded to carry these suggestions into execution, Jugurtha, finding that he had no sufficient support in his friends, as a sense of guilt deterred some, and evil report or timidity others, from coming forward in his behalf, directed Bomilcar, his most attached and faithful adherent, to procure by the aid of money, by which he had already effected so much, assassins to kill Massiva; and to do it secretly if he could; but, if secrecy should be impossible, to cut him off in any what whatsoever. This commission Bomilcar soon found means to execute; and, by the agency of men versed in such service, ascertained the direction of his journeys, his hours of leaving home, and the times at which he resorted to particular places, and, when all was ready, placed his assassins in ambush. One of their number sprung upon Massiva, though with too little caution, and killed him; but being himself caught, he made, at the instigation of many, and especially of Albinus the consul, a full confession. Bomilcar was accordingly committed for trial, though rather on the principles of reason and justice than in accordance with the law of nations, as he was in the retinue of one who had come to Rome on a pledge of the public faith for his safety. But Jugurtha, though clearly guilty of the crime, did not cease to struggle against the truth, until he perceived that the infamy of the deed was too strong for his interest or his money. For which reason, although, at the commencement of the proceedings, he had given fifty of his friends as bail for Bomilcar, yet, thinking more of his kingdom than of the sureties, he sent him off privately into Numidia; for he feared that if such a man should be executed, his other subjects would be deterred from obeying him. A few days after, he himself departed, having been ordered by the senate to quit Italy. But, as he was going from Rome, he is said, after frequently looking back on it in silence, to have at last exclaimed, “That it was a venal city, and would soon perish, if it could be find a purchaser!”
The war being now renewed, Albinus hastened to transport provisions, money, and other things necessary for the army, into Africa, whither he himself soon followed, with the hope that, before the time of the comitia, which was not far distant, he might be able, by an engagement, by capitulation, or by some other method, to bring the contest to a conclusion. Jugurtha, on the other hand, tried every means of protracting the war, continually inventing new causes for delay; at one time he promised to surrender, at another he feigned distrust; he retreated when Albinus attacked him, and then, lest his men should lose courage, attacked in return, and thus amused the consul with alternate procrastinations of war and of peace.
There were some, at that time, who thought that Albinus understood Jugurtha’s object, and who believed that so ready a protraction of the war, after so much haste at the commencement, was to be attributed less to tardiness than to treachery. However this might be, Albinus, when time passed on, and the day of the comitia approached, left his brother Aulus in the camp as proprætor, and returned to Rome.
The republic, at this time, was grievously distracted by the contentions of the tribunes. Two of them, Publius Lucullus and Lucius Annius, were struggling, against the will of their colleagues, to prolong their term of office; and this dispute put off the comitia throughout the year. In consequence of this delay, Aulus, who, as I have just said, was left as proprætor in the camp, conceiving hopes either of finishing the war, or of extorting money from Jugurtha by the terror of his army, drew out his troops, in the month of January, from their winter-quarters into the field, and by forced marches, during severe weather, made his way to the town of Suthul, where Jugurtha’s treasures were deposited. And though this place, both from the inclemency of the season, and from its advantageous situation, could neither be taken nor besieged; for around its walls, which were built on the edge of a steep hill, a marshy plain, flooded by the rains of winter, had been converted into a lake; yet Aulus, either as a feint to strike terror into Jugurtha, or blinded by avarice, began to move forward his vineæ, to cast up a rampart, and to hasten all necessary preparations for a siege.
Jugurtha, seeing the proprætor’s vanity and ignorance, artfully strengthened his infatuation; he sent him, from time to time, deputies with submissive messages, whilst he himself, as if desirous to escape, led his army away through woody defiles and cross-roads. At length he succeeded in alluring Aulus, by the prospect of a surrender on conditions, to leave Suthul, and pursue him, as if in full retreat, into the remoter parts of the country. Meanwhile, by means of our skilful emissaries, he tampered night and day with our men, and prevailed on some of the officers, both of infantry and cavalry, to desert to him at once, and upon others to quit their posts at a given signal, that their defection might thus be less observed. Having prepared matters according to his wishes, he suddenly surrounded the camp of Aulus, in the dead of night, with a vast body of Numidians. The Roman soldiers were alarmed with an unusual disturbance; some of them seized their arms, others hid themselves, others encouraged those that were afraid; but consternation prevailed everywhere; for the number of the enemy was great, the sky was thick with clouds and darkness, the danger was indiscernible, and it was uncertain whether it were safer to flee or to remain. Of those whom I have just mentioned as being bribed, one cohort of Ligurians, with two troops of Thracian horse, and a few common soldiers, went over to Jugurtha; and the chief centurion of the third legion allowed the enemy an entrance at the very post which he had been appointed to defend, and at which all the Numidians poured into the camp. Our men fled disgracefully, the greater part having thrown away their arms, and took possession of a neighbouring hill. Night, and the spoil of the camp, prevented the enemy from making full use of this victory. On the following day, Jugurtha, coming to a conference with Aulus, told him, “that though he held him hemmed in by famine and the sword, yet that, being mindful of human vicissitudes, he would, if they would make a treaty with him, allow them to depart uninjured; only that they must pass under the yoke, and quit Numidia within ten days.” These terms were severe and ignominious; but, as death was the alternative, peace was concluded as Jugurtha desired.
When this affair was made known at Rome, consternation and dismay pervaded the city; some were concerned for the glory of the republic; others, ignorant of war, trembled for their liberty. But all were indignant at Aulus, and especially those who had often been distinguished in the field, because, with arms in his hands, he had sought safety in disgrace rather than in resistance. The consul Albinus, apprehending, from the delinquency of his brother, odium and danger to himself, consulted the senate on the treaty which had been made, but, at the same time, raised recruits for the army, sent for auxiliaries to the allies and Latins, and made general preparations for war. The senate, as was just, decreed, “that no treaty could be made without their own consent and that of the people.”
The consul, though he was hindered by the influence of the tribunes from taking with him the force which he had raised, set out in a few days for the province of Africa, where the whole army, being withdrawn, according to the agreement, from Numidia, had gone into winter-quarters. When he arrived there, although he longed to pursue Jugurtha, and diminish the odium that had fallen on his brother, yet, when he saw the state of the troops, whom, besides the flight and relaxation of discipline, licentiousness and debauchery had corrupted, he determined, under all the circumstances of the case, to attempt nothing.
At Rome, in the mean time, Caius Mamilius Limetanus, one of the tribunes, proposed that the people should pass a bill for instituting an inquiry into the conduct of those by whose influence Jugurtha had set at nought the decrees of the senate, as well as of those who, whether as ambassadors or commanders, had received money from him, or who had restored to him his elephants and deserters, or had made any compacts with the enemy relative to peace or war. To this bill some, who were conscious of guilt, and others, who apprehended danger from the jealousy of parties, secretly raised obstructions through the agency of friends, and especially of men among the Latins and Italian allies, since they could not openly resist it, without admitting that these and similar practices met their approbation. But as to the people, it is incredible what eagerness they displayed, and with what spirit they approved, voted, and passed the bill, though rather from hatred to the nobility, against whom these severe measures were directed, than from concern for the republic; so violent was the fury of party.
Whilst the rest of the delinquents were in trepidation, Marcus Scaurus, whom I have previously noticed as Bestia’s lieutenant, contrived, amidst the exultation of the populace, the dismay of his own party, and the continued agitation in the city, to have himself elected one of the three commissioners who were appointed by the bill of Mamilius to carry it into execution. But the investigation, notwithstanding, was conducted with great rigour and violence, under the influence of common rumour and popular caprice; for the insolence of success, which had often distinguished the nobility, on this occasion characterised the people.
The prevalence of parties among the people, and of factions in the senate, and of all evil practices attendant on them, had its origin at Rome, a few years before, during a period of tranquillity, and amidst the turbulence of all that mankind regard as desirable. For, before the destruction of Carthage, the senate and people managed the affairs of the republic with mutual moderation and forbearance; there were no contests among the citizens for honour or ascendancy; but the dread of an enemy kept the state in order. When that fear, however, was removed from their minds, licentiousness and pride, evils which prosperity loves to foster, immediately began to prevail; and thus peace, which they had so eagerly desired in adversity, proved, when they had obtained it, more grievous and fatal than adversity itself. The patricians carried their authority, and the people their liberty, to excess; every man took, snatched, and seized what he could. There was a complete division into two factions, and the republic was torn in pieces between them. Yet the nobility still maintained an ascendancy by conspiring together; for the strength of the people, being disunited and dispersed among a multitude, was less able to exert itself. Things were accordingly directed, both at home and in the field, by the will of a small number of men, at whose disposal were the treasury, the provinces, offices, honours, and triumphs; while the people were oppressed with military service and with poverty, and the generals divided the spoils of war with a few of their friends. The parents and children of the soldiers, meantime, if they chanced to dwell near a powerful neighbour, were driven from their homes. Thus avarice, leagued with power, disturbed, violated, and wasted everything, without moderation or restraint; disregarding alike reason and religion, and rushing headlong, as it were, to its own destruction. For whenever any arose among the nobility, who preferred true glory to unjust power, the state was immediately in a tumult, and civil discord spread with as much disturbance as attends a convulsion of the earth.
Thus when Tiberius and Caius Gracchus, whose forefathers had done much to increase the power of the state in the Punic and other wars, began to vindicate the liberty of the people, and to expose the misconduct of the few, the nobility, conscious of guilt, and seized with alarm, endeavoured, sometimes by means of the allies and Latins, and sometimes by means of the equestrian order, whom the hope of coalition with the patricians had detached from the people, to put a stop to the proceedings of the Gracchi; and first they killed Tiberius, and a few years after Caius, who pursued the same measures as his brother, the one when he was tribune, and the other when he was one of a triumvirate for settling colonies; and with them they cut off Marcus Fulvius Flaccus. In the Gracchi, indeed, it must be allowed that, from their ardour for victory, there was not sufficient prudence. But to a reasonable man it is more agreeable to submit to injustice than to triumph over it by improper means. The nobility, however, using their victory with wanton extravagance, exterminated numbers of men by the sword or by exile, yet rather increased, for the time to come, the dread with which they were regarded, than their real power. Such proceedings have often ruined powerful states; for of two parties, each strives to suppress the other by any means whatever, and to take vengeance with undue severity on the vanquished.
But were I to attempt to treat of the animosities of parties, and of the morals of the state, with minuteness of detail, and suitably to the vastness of the subject, time would fail me sooner than matter. I therefore return to my subject.
After the treaty of Aulus, and the disgraceful flight of our army, Quintus Metellus and Marcus Silanus, the consuls elect, divided the provinces between them; and Numidia fell to Metellus, a man of energy, and, though an opponent of the popular party, yet of a character uniformly irreproachable. He, as soon as he entered on his office, regarded all other things as common to himself and his colleague, but directed his chief attention to the war which he was to conduct. Distrusting, therefore, the old army, he began to raise new troops, to procure auxiliaries from all parts, and to provide arms, horses, and other military requisites, besides provisions in abundance, and everything else which was likely to be of use in a war varied in its character, and demanding great resources. To assist in accomplishing these objects, the allies and Latins, by the appointment of the senate, and different princes of their own accord, sent supplies; and the whole state exerted itself in the cause with the greatest zeal. Having at length prepared and arranged everything according to his wishes, Metellus set out for Numidia, attended with sanguine expectations on the part of his fellow-citizens, not only because of his other excellent qualities, but especially because his mind was proof against gold; for it was through the avarice of our commanders, that, down to this period, our affairs in Numidia had been ruined, and those of the enemy rendered prosperous.
When he arrived in Africa, the command of the army was resigned to him by Albinus, the proconsul; but it was an army spiritless and unwarlike; incapable of encountering either danger or fatigue; more ready with the tongue than with the sword; accustomed to plunder our allies, while itself was the prey of the enemy; unchecked by discipline, and void of all regard to its character. The new general, accordingly, felt more anxiety from the corrupt morals of the men, than confidence or hope from their numbers. He determined, however, though the delay of the comitia had shortened his summer campaign, and though he knew his countrymen to be anxious for the result of his proceedings, not to commence operations, until, by a revival of the old discipline, he had brought the soldiers to bear fatigue. For Albinus, dispirited by the disaster of his brother Aulus and his army, and having resolved not to leave the province during the portion of the summer that he was to command, had kept the soldiers, for the most part, in a stationary camp, except when stench, or want of forage, obliged them to remove. But neither had the camp been fortified, nor the watches kept, according to military usage; every one had been allowed to leave his post when he pleased. The camp-followers, mingled with the soldiers, wandered about day and night, ravaging the country, robbing the houses, and vying with each other in carrying off cattle and slaves, which they exchanged with traders for foreign wine and other luxuries; they even sold the corn, which was given them from the public store, and bought bread from day to day; and, in a word, whatever abominations, arising from idleness and licentiousness, can be expressed or imagined, and even more, were to be seen in that army.
But I am assured that Metellus, in these difficult circumstances, no less than in his operations against the enemy, proved himself a great and wise man; so just a medium did he observe between an affection of popularity and an excessive enforcement of discipline. His first measure was to remove incentives to idleness, by a general order that no one should sell bread, or any other dressed provisions, in the camp; that no sutlers should follow the army; and that no common soldier should have a servant, or beast of burden, either in the camp or on a march. He made the strictest regulations, too, with regard to other things. He moved his camp daily, exercising the soldiers by marches across the country; he fortified it with a rampart and a trench, exactly as if the enemy had been at hand; he placed numerous sentinels by night, and went the rounds with his officers; and, when the army was on the march, he would be at one time in the front, at another in the rear, and at another in the centre, to see that none quitted their ranks, that the men kept close to their standards, and that every soldier carried his provisions and arms. Thus by preventing rather than punishing irregularities, he in a short time rendered his army effective.
Jugurtha, meantime, having learned from his emissaries how Metellus was proceeding, and having heard, when he was in Rome, of the integrity of the consul’s character, began to despair of his plans, and at length actually endeavoured to effect a capitulation. He therefore sent deputies to the consul with proposals of submission, stipulating only for his own life and that of his children, and offering to surrender everything else to the Romans. But Metellus had already learned by experience, that the Numidians were a faithless race, of unsettled disposition, and fond of change; and he accordingly applied himself to each of the deputies separately, and after gradually sounding them, and finding them proper instruments for his purpose, prevailed on them, by large promises, to deliver Jugurtha into his hands; bringing him alive, if they could, or dead, if to take him alive should be impracticable. In public, however, he directed that such an answer should be given to the king as would be agreeable to his wishes.
A few days afterwards, he led the army, which was now vigorous and resolute, into Numidia, where, instead of any appearance of war, he found the cottages full of people, and the cattle and labourers in the fields, while the officers of Jugurtha came from the towns and villages to meet him, offering to supply him with corn, to convey provisions for him, and to do whatever might be required of them. Metellus, notwithstanding, made no diminution in the caution with which he marched, but kept as much on the defensive as if an enemy had been at hand; and he despatched scouts to explore the country, thinking that these signs of submission were but pretence, and that the Numidians were watching an opportunity for treachery. He himself, with some light-armed cohorts, and a select body of slingers and archers, advanced always in the front; while Caius Marius, hie lieutenant-general, at the head of the cavalry, had charge of the rear. The auxiliary horse, distributed among the tribunes of the legions and prefects of the cohorts, he placed on the flanks, so that, with the aid of the light troops mixed with them, they might repel the enemy wherever an approach should be made. For such was the subtlety of Jugurtha, and such his knowledge of the country and the art of war, that it was doubtful whether he was more formidable absent or present, offering peace or threatening hostilities.
There lay, not far from the route which Metellus was pursuing, a city of the Numidians named Vaga, the most celebrated place for trade in the whole kingdom, in which many Italian merchants were accustomed to reside and traffic. Here the consul, to try the disposition of the inhabitants, and, should they allow him, to take advantage of the situation of the place, established a garrison, and ordered the people to furnish him with corn, and other necessaries for war; thinking, as circumstances indeed suggested, that the concourse of merchants, and frequent arrival of supplies, would add to the strength of his army, and further the plans which he had already formed.
In the midst of these proceedings, Jugurtha, with extraordinary earnestness, sent deputies to sue for peace, offering to resign everything to Metellus, except his own life and that of his children. These, like the former, the consul first seduced to treachery, and then sent back; the peace which Jugurtha asked, he neither granted nor refused, but waited, during these delays, the performance of the deputies’ promises.
Jugurtha, on comparing the words of Metellus with his actions, perceived that he was assailed with his own artifices; for though peace was offered him in words, a most vigorous war was in reality pursued against him; one of his strongest cities was wrested from him; his country was explored by the enemy, and the affections of his subjects alienated. Being compelled, therefore, by the necessity of circumstances, he resolved to try the fortune of a battle. Having, with this view, informed himself of the exact route of the enemy, and hoping for success from the advantage of the ground, he collected as large a force of every kind as he could, and, marching by cross-roads, got in advance of Metellus’s army.
There was, in that part of Numidia, of which, on the division of the kingdom, Adherbal had become possessor, a river named Muthul, flowing from the south; and, about twenty miles from it, was a range of mountains running parallel with the stream, wild and uncultivated; but from the centre of it stretched with a kind of hill, reaching to a vast distance, covered with wild olives, myrtles, and other trees, such as grow in a dry and sandy soil. The plain, which lay between the mountains and the Muthul, was uninhabited from want of water, except the parts bordering on the river, which were planted with trees, and full of cattle and inhabitants.
On this hill, which I have just mentioned, stretching in a transverse direction, Jugurtha took post with his line drawn out to a great length. The command of the elephants, and of part of the infantry, he committed to Bomilcar, and gave him instructions how to act. He himself, with the whole of the cavalry and the choicest of the foot, took his station nearer to the range of mountains. Then, riding round among the several squadrons and battalions, he exhorted and conjured them to call to mind their former prowess and triumphs, and to defend themselves and their country from Roman rapacity; saying that they would have to engage with those whom they had already conquered and sent under the yoke, and that, though their commander was changed, there was no alteration in their spirit. He added, that he had provided for his men everything becoming a general; that he had chosen the higher ground, where they, being well acquainted with the country, would contend with adversaries ignorant of it; nor would they engage, inferior in numbers or skill, with a larger or more experienced force; and that they should therefore be ready, when the signal should be given, to fall vigorously on the Romans, as that day would either crown all their labours and victories, or be a prelude to the most grievous calamities. He also addressed himself, individually, to any one whom he had rewarded with money or honours for military desert, reminding him of his favours, and pointing him out as an example to the rest; and finally he excited his men, some in one way and some in another, by threats or entreaties, according to the different dispositions of each.
Metellus, who was still ignorant of the enemy’s position, was now seen descending the mountain with his army. He was at first doubtful what the strange appearance before him indicated; for the Numidians, both cavalry and infantry, had taken post among the wood, not entirely concealing themselves, by reason of the lowness of the trees, yet rendering it uncertain what they were, as both themselves and their standards were screened as well by the nature of the ground as by artifice; but soon perceiving that there were men in ambush, he halted a while, and, having altered the arrangement of his troops, he drew up those in the right wing, which was nearest to the enemy, in three lines; he distributed the slingers and archers among the infantry, posted all the cavalry on the flanks, and having made a brief address, such as time permitted, to his men, he led them down, with the front changed into a flank, towards the plain.
But when he observed that the Numidians remained quiet, and did not offer to descend from the hill, he became apprehensive that his army, from the season of the year and the scarcity of water, might be overcome with thirst, and therefore sent Rutilius, one of his lieutenant-generals, with the light-armed cohorts and a detachment of cavalry, towards the river, to secure ground for an encampment, expecting that the enemy, by frequent charges and attacks on his flank, would endeavour to impede his march, and, as they despaired of success in arms, would try the effect of fatigue and thirst on his troops. He then continued to advanced by degrees, as his circumstances and the ground permitted, in the same order in which he had descended from the range of mountains. He assigned Marius his post behind the front line, and took on himself the command of the cavalry on the left wing, which, on the march, had become the van.
When Jugurtha perceived that the rear of the Roman army had passed his first line, he took possession of that part of the mountain from which Metellus had descended, with a body of about two thousand infantry, that it might not serve the enemy, if they were driven back, as a place of retreat, and afterwards as a post of defence; and then, ordering the signal to be given, suddenly commenced his attack. Some of his Numidians made havoc in the rear of the Romans, while others assailed them on the right and left wings; they all advanced and charged furiously, and everywhere threw the consul’s troops into confusion. Even those of our men who made the stoutest resistance, were baffled by the enemy’s versatile method of fighting, and wounded from a distance, without having the power of wounding in return, or of coming to close combat; for the Numidian cavalry, as they had been previously instructed by Jugurtha, retreated whenever a troop of Romans attempted to pursue them, but did not keep in a body, or collect themselves into one place, but dispersed as widely as possible. Thus, being superior in numbers, if they could not deter the Romans from pursuing, they surrounded them, when disordered, on the rear or flank, or, if the hill seemed more convenient for retreat than the plain, the Numidian horses, being accustomed to the brushwood, easily made their way among it, whilst the difficulty of the ascent, and want of acquaintance with the ground, impeded those of the Romans.
The aspect of the whole struggle was indeed various, perplexing, direful, and lamentable; the men, separated from their comrades, were partly fleeing, partly pursuing; neither standards nor ranks were regarded, but wherever danger pressed, there they made a stand and defended themselves; arms and weapons, horses and men, enemies, and fellow-countrymen, were all mingled in confusion; nothing was done by direction or command, but chance ordered everything. Though the day, therefore, was now far advanced, the event of the contest was still uncertain. At last, however, when all were faint with exertion and the heat of the day, Metellus, observing that the Numidians were less vigorous in their charges, drew his troops together by degrees, restored order among them, and led four cohorts of the legions against the enemy’s infantry, of whom a great number, overcome with fatigue, had seated themselves on the high ground. He at the same time entreated and exhorted his men not to lose courage, nor to suffer a flying enemy to be victorious; adding that they had neither camp nor citadel to which they could flee, but that their only dependence was on their arms. Nor was Jugurtha, in the mean time, inactive; he rode round among his troops, cheered them, renewed the contest, and, at the head of a select body, made every possible effort for victory; supporting his own men, charging such of the enemy as wavered, and repressing with missiles such as he saw remaining unshaken.
Thus did these two commanders, both eminent men, maintain the contest against each other. In personal ability they were equal, but in circumstances unequal. Metellus had resolute troops, but a disadvantageous position; Jugurtha had everything in his favour except men. At last the Romans, seeing that they had no place of refuge, that the enemy allowed no opportunity for a regular engagement, and that the evening was fast approaching, forced their way, according to the orders which were given, up the hill. The Numidians were thus driven from their position, routed, and put to flight; a few of them were slain, but their speed, and the enemy’s ignorance of the country, saved the greater number of them.
Meanwhile Bomilcar, who, as I have before, was appointed by Jugurtha over the elephants and a part of the infantry, having seen Rutilius pass by him, led down his men gradually into the plain, and whilst Rutilius hastened to the river, to which he had been despatched, quietly drew them up in such order as circumstances required; not omitting, at the same time, to watch every movement of the enemy. When he learned that Rutilius had taken his position, and seemed free from apprehension of danger, and heard, at the same time, an increasing noise where Jugurtha was engaged, fearing lest the lieutenant-general, taking the alarm, should go to the support of his countrymen in difficulties, he, in order to intercept his march, increased the extent of his lines, which, from distrust of the bravery of his own men, he had previously condensed, and advanced in this order towards Rutilius’s camp.
The Romans, on a sudden, observed a vast cloud of dust, which, as the ground, thickly covered with bushes, obstructed their view, they at first supposed to be only sand raised by the wind; but at length, when they saw that it continued uniform, and approached nearer and nearer as the line advanced, they understood the real cause of it, and, hastily seizing their arms, drew up, as their commander directed, before the camp. When the enemy camp up, both sides rushed to the encounter with loud shouts. But the Numidians maintained the contest only as long as they trusted for support to their elephants; for, when they saw the animals entangled in the boughs of the trees, and dispersed or surrounded by the enemy, they betook themselves to flight, and most of them, having thrown away their arms, escaped, by favour of the hill, or of the night, which was now coming on, without injury. Of the elephants, four were taken, and the rest, to the number of forty, were killed.
The Romans, though fatigued and exhausted with their march, the construction of their camp, and the engagement, yet, as Metellus was longer in coming than they expected, advanced to meet him in regular and steady order. The subtlety of the Numidians, indeed, allowed them neither rest nor relaxation. But as the two parties drew together, in the obscurity of the night, each occasioned, by a noise like that of enemies approaching, alarm and trepidation in the other; and, had not parties of horse, sent forward from both sides, ascertained the truth, a fatal disaster was on the point of happening from the mistake. However, in place of fear, joy quickly succeeded; the soldier met with mutual congratulations, relating their adventures, or listening to those of others, and each extolling his own achievements to the skies. For thus it is with human affairs; in success, even cowards may boast; whilst defeat lowers the character even of heroes.
Metellus remained four days in the same camp. He carefully provided for the recovery of the wounded, rewarded, in military fashion, such as had distinguished themselves in the engagements, and praised and thanked them all in a public address; exhorting them to maintain equal resolution in their future labours, which would be less arduous, as they had fought sufficiently for victory, and would now have to contend only for spoil. In the mean time he despatched deserters, and other eligible persons, to ascertain where Jugurtha was, or what he was doing; whether he had but few followers, or a large army; and how he conducted himself under his defeat. The prince, he found, had retreated to places full of wood, well defended by nature, and was there collecting an army, which would be more numerous indeed than the former, but inactive and inefficient, as being composed of men better acquainted with husbandry and cattle than with war. This had happened from the circumstance, that, in case of flight, none of the Numidian troops, except the royal cavalry, follow their king; the rest disperse, wherever inclination leads them; nor is this thought any disgrace to them as soldiers, such being the custom of the people.
Metellus, therefore, seeing that Jugurtha’s spirit was still unsubdued; that a war was being renewed, which could only be conducted according to the prince’s pleasure; and that he was struggling with the enemy on unequal terms, as the Numidians suffered a defeat with less loss than his own men gained a victory, he resolved to manage the contest, not by pitched battles or regular warfare, but in another method. He accordingly marched into the richest parts of Numidia, captured and burnt many fortresses and towns, which were insufficiently or wholly undefended, put the youth to the sword, and gave up everything else as plunder to his soldiers. From the terror caused by these proceedings, many persons were given up as hostages to the Romans; corn, and other necessaries, were supplied in abundance; and garrisons were admitted wherever Metellus thought fit.
These measures alarmed Jugurtha much more than the loss of the late battle; for he, whose whole security lay in flight, was compelled to pursue; and he who could not defend his own part of the kingdom, was obliged to make war in that which was occupied by others. Under these circumstances, however, he adopted what seemed the most eligible plan. He ordered the main body of his army to continue stationary; whilst he himself, with a select troop of cavalry, went in pursuit of Metellus, and coming upon him unperceived, by means of night marches and by-roads, he fell upon such of the Romans as were straggling about, of whom the greater number, being unarmed, were slain, and several others made prisoners; not one of them, indeed, escaped unharmed; and the Numidians, before assistance could arrive from the camp, fled, as they had been ordered, to the nearest hills.
In the mean time great joy appeared at Rome when the proceedings of Metellus were reported, and when it was known how he was conducting himself and his army conformably to the ancient discipline; how, on adverse ground, he had gained a victory by his valour; how he was securing possession of the enemy’s territory; and how he had driven Jugurtha, when elated by the weakness of Aulus, to depend for safety on the desert or on flight. For these successes, accordingly, the senate decreed a thanksgiving to the immortal gods; the city, which had been full of anxiety, and apprehensive as to the event of the war, was now filled with joy; and the fame of Metellus was raised to the utmost height.
The consul’s eagerness to gain a complete victory was thus increased; he exerted himself in every possible way, taking care, at the same time, to give the enemy no opportunity of attacking him to advantage. He remembered that envy is the concomitant of glory, and thus, the more renowned he became, the greater was his caution and circumspection. He never went out to plunder, after the sudden attack of Jugurtha, with his troops in scattered parties; when corn or forage was sought, a body of cohorts, with the whole of the cavalry, were stationed as a guard. He himself conducted part of the army, and Marius the rest. The country was wasted, however, more by fire than by spoliation. They had separate camps, not far from each other; whenever there was occasion for force, they formed a union; but, that desolation and terror might spread the further, they acted separately. Jugurtha, meanwhile, continued to follow them along the hills, watching for a favourable opportunity or situation for an attack. He destroyed the forage, and spoiled the water, which was scarce, wherever he found that the enemy were coming. He presented himself sometimes to Metellus, and sometimes to Marius; he would attack their rear upon a march, and instantly retreat to the hills; he would threaten sometimes one point, and sometimes another, neither giving battle nor allowing rest, but making it his object to retard the progress of the enemy.
The Roman commander, finding himself thus harassed by artifices, resolved on laying siege to a large city, named Zama, which was the bulwark of that part of the kingdom in which it was situate; expecting that Jugurtha, as a necessary consequence, would come to the relief of his subjects in distress, and that a battle would then follow. But the king, being apprised by some deserters of the consul’s design, reached the place, by rapid marches, before him, and exhorted the inhabitants to defend their walls, giving them, as a reinforcement, a body of deserters; a class of men, who, of all the royal forces, were the most to be trusted, inasmuch as they dared not be guilty of treachery. He also promised to support them, whenever it should be necessary, with his whole army.
Having taken these precautions, he retired into the deserts of the interior; where he soon after learned that Marius, with a few cohorts, had been despatched from the line of march to bring provisions from Sicca, a town which had been the first to revolt from him after his defeat. To this place he hastened by night, accompanied by a select body of cavalry, and attacked the Romans at the gate, just as they were leaving the city; calling to the inhabitants, at the same time, with a loud voice, to surround the cohorts in the rear; adding, that Fortune had given them an opportunity for a glorious exploit; and that, if they took advantage of it, he would henceforth enjoy his kingdom, and they their liberty, without fear. And had not Marius hastened to advance the standards, and to escape from the town, it is certain that all, or the greater part of the inhabitants, would have changed their allegiance; so great is the fickleness which the Numidians exhibit in their conduct. The soldiers of Jugurtha, animated for a time by their king, betook themselves, after losing a few of their number, to flight.
Marius arrived at Zama. This town, built on a plain, was better fortified by art than by nature. It was well supplied with necessaries, and contained plenty of arms and men. Metellus, having made arrangements suitable for the time and the place, encompassed the whole city with his army, assigning to each of his officers his post of command. At a given signal, a loud shout was raised on every side, but without exciting the least alarm in the Numidians, who awaited the attack full of spirit and resolution. The assault was consequently commenced; the Romans were allowed to act each according to his inclination; some annoyed the enemy with slings and stones from a distance; others came close up to the walls, and attempted to undermine or scale them, desiring to engage in close combat with the besieged. The Zamians, on the other hand, rolled down stones, and hurled burning stakes, javelins, and wood smeared with pitch and sulphur, on the nearest assailants. Nor was caution a sufficient protection to those who kept aloof; for darts, discharged from engines or by the hand, inflicted wounds on most of them; and thus the brave and the timid, though of unequal merit, were exposed to equal danger.
While the struggle was thus continued at Zama, Jugurtha, at the head of a large force, suddenly attacked the camp of the Romans, and, through the remissness of those left to guard it, who expected anything rather than an attack, effected an entrance at one of the gates. Our men, struck with sudden consternation, acted each on his own impulse; some fled, others seized their arms; and many of them were wounded or slain. About forty, however, out of the whole number, mindful of the honour of Rome, formed themselves into a body, and took possession of a slight eminence, from which they could not be dislodged by the utmost efforts of the enemy, but hurled back the darts discharged at them, and, as they were few against many, not without execution. If the Numidians came near them, they displayed their courage, and slaughtered, repulsed, and dispersed them, with the greatest fury. Metellus, meanwhile, who was vigorously pursuing the siege, heard a noise, as of enemies, in his rear, and, turning round his horse, perceived a party of soldiers in flight towards him; a certain proof that they were his own men. He instantly, therefore, despatched the whole of the cavalry to the camp, and immediately afterwards Caius Marius, with the cohorts of the allies, intreating him with tears, by their mutual friendship, and by his regard for the public welfare, to allow no stain to rest on a victorious army, and not to let the enemy escape with impunity. Marius soon executed his orders. Jugurtha, in consequence, after being embarrassed in the entrenchments of the camp, while some of his men threw themselves over the ramparts, and others, in their haste, obstructed each other at the gates, fled, with considerable loss, to his strongholds. Metellus, not succeeding in his attempt on the town, retired with his forces, at the approach of night, into his camp.
On the following day, before he marched out to resume the siege, he ordered the whole of his cavalry to take their station before the camp, on the side where the approach of Jugurtha was to be apprehended; assigning the gates, and adjoining posts, to the charges of the tribunes. He then marched towards the town, and commenced an assault upon the walls as on the day before. Jugurtha, meanwhile issuing from his concealment, suddenly attacked our men in the camp, of whom those stationed in advance were for the moment alarmed and thrown into confusion; but the rest soon came to their support; nor would the Numidians have longer maintained their ground, had not their foot, which were mingled with the cavalry, done great execution in the struggle; for the horse, relying on the infantry, did not, as is common in actions of cavalry, charge and then retreat, but pressed impetuously forward, disordering and breaking the ranks, and thus, with the aid of the light-armed foot, almost succeeded in giving the enemy a defeat.
The conflict at Zama, at the same time, was continued with great fury. Wherever any lieutenant or tribune commanded, there the men exerted themselves with the utmost vigour. No one seemed to depend for support on others, but every one on his own exertions. The townsmen, on the other side, showed equal spirit. Attacks, or preparations for defence, were made in all quarters. All appeared more eager to wound their enemies than to protect themselves. Shouts, mingled with exhortations, cries of joy, and the clashing of arms, resounded through the heaven. Darts flew thick on every side. If the besiegers, however, in the least relaxed their efforts, the defenders of the walls immediately turned their attention to the distant engagement of the cavalry; they were to be seen sometimes exhibiting joy, and sometimes apprehension, according to the varying fortune of Jugurtha, and, as if they could be heard or seen by their friends, uttering warnings or exhortations, making signs with their hands, and moving their bodies to and fro, like men avoiding or hurling darts. This being noticed by Marius, who commanded on that side of the town, he artfully relaxed his efforts, as if despairing of success, and allowed the besieged to view the battle at the camp unmolested. Then, whilst their attention was closely fixed on their countrymen, he made a vigorous assault on the wall, and the soldiers, mounting their scaling-ladders, had almost gained the top, when the townsmen rushed to the spot in a body, and hurled down upon them stones, firebrands, and every description of missiles. Our men made head against these annoyances for a while, but at length, when some of the ladders were broken, and those who had mounted them dashed to the ground, the rest of the assailants retreated as they could, a few indeed unhurt, but the greater number miserably wounded. Night put an end to the efforts of both parties.
When Metellus saw that all his attempts were vain; that the town was not to be taken; that Jugurtha was resolved to abstain from fighting, except from an ambush, or on his own ground, and that the summer was now far advanced, he withdrew his army from Zama, and placed garrisons in such of the cities that had revolted to him as were sufficiently strong in situation or fortifications. The rest of his forces he settled in winter quarters, in that part of our province nearest to Numidia.
This season of repose, however, he did not, like other commanders, abandon to idleness and luxury; but as the war had been but slowly advanced by fighting, he resolved to try the effect of treachery on the king through his friends, and to employ their perfidy instead of arms. He accordingly addressed himself, with large promises, to Bomilcar, the same nobleman who had been with Jugurtha at Rome, and who had fled from thence, notwithstanding he had given bail, to escape being tried for the murder of Massiva; selecting this person for his instrument, because, from his great intimacy with Jugurtha, he had the best opportunities of betraying him. He prevailed on him, in the first place, to come to a conference with him privately, when, having given him his word, “that, if he should deliver up Jugurtha, alive or dead, the senate would grant him a pardon, and the full possession of his property,” he easily brought him over to his purpose, especially as he was naturally faithless, and also apprehensive that, if peace were made with the Romans, he himself would be surrendered to justice by the terms of it.
Bomilcar took the earliest opportunity of addressing Jugurtha, at a time when he was full of anxiety, and lamenting his ill success. He exhorted and implored him, with tears in his eyes, to take at length some thought for himself and his children, as well as for the people of Numidia, who had so much claim upon him. He reminded him that they had been defeated in every battle; that the country was laid waste; that numbers of his subjects had been captured or slain; that the resources of the kingdom were greatly reduced; that the valour of his soldiers, and his own fortune, had been already sufficiently tried; and that he should beware, lest, if he delayed to consult for his people, his people should consult for themselves. By these and similar appeals, he prevailed with Jugurtha to think of a surrender. Ambassadors were accordingly sent to the Roman general, announcing that Jugurtha was ready to submit to whatever he should desire, and to trust himself and his kingdom unconditionally to his honour. Metellus, on receiving this statement, summoned such of his officers as were of senatorial rank, from their winter quarters; of whom, with others whom he thought eligible, he formed a council. By a resolution of this assembly, in conformity with ancient usage, he demanded of Jugurtha, through his ambassadors, two hundred thousand pounds’ weight of silver, all his elephants, and a portion of his horses and arms. These requisitions being immediately complied with, he next desired that all the deserters should be brought to him in chains. A large number of them were accordingly brought; but a few, when the surrender first began to be mentioned, had fled into Mauretania to king Bocchus.
When Jugurtha, however, after being thus despoiled of arms, men, and money, was summoned to appear in person at Tisidium, to await the consul’s commands, he began again to change his mind, dreading, from a consciousness of guilt, the punishment due to his crimes. Having spent several days in hesitation, sometimes, from disgust at his ill success, believing anything better than war, and sometimes considering with himself how grievous would be the fall from sovereignty to slavery, he at last determined, notwithstanding that he had lost so many and so valuable means of resistance, to commence hostilities anew.
At Rome, meanwhile, the senate, having been consulted about the provinces, had decreed Numidia to Metellus.
About the same time, as Caius Marius, who happened to be at Utica, was sacrificing to the gods, an augur told him that great and wonderful things were presaged to him; that he might therefore pursue whatever designs he had formed, trusting to the gods for success; and that he might try fortune as often as he pleased, for that all his undertakings would prosper. Previously to this period, an ardent longing for the consulship had possessed him; and he had, indeed, every qualification for obtaining it, except antiquity of family; he had industry, integrity, great knowledge of war, and a spirit undaunted in the field; he was temperate in private life, superior to pleasure and riches, and ambitious only of glory. Having been born at Arpinum, and brought up there during his boyhood, he employed himself, as soon as he was of age to bear arms, not in the study of Greek eloquence, nor in learning the refinements of the city, but in military service; and thus, amidst the strictest discipline, his excellent genius soon attained full vigour. When he solicited the people, therefore, for the military tribuneship, he was well known by name, though most were strangers to his face, and unanimously elected by the tribes. After this office he attained others in succession, and conducted himself so well in his public duties, that he was always deemed worthy of a higher station than he had reached. Yet, though such had been his character hitherto (for he was afterwards carried away by ambition), he had not ventured to stand for the consulship. The people, at that time, still disposed of other civil offices, but the nobility transmitted the consulship from hand to hand among themselves. Nor had any commoner appeared, however famous or distinguished by his achievements, who would not have been thought unworthy of that honour, and, as it were, a disgrace to it.
But when Marius found that the words of the augur pointed in the same direction as his own inclinations prompted him, he requested of Metellus leave of absence, that he might offer himself a candidate for the consulship. Metellus, though eminently distinguished by virtue, honour, and other qualities valued by the good, had yet a haughty and disdainful spirit, the common failing of the nobility. He was at first, therefore, astonished at so extraordinary an application, expressed surprise at Marius’s views, and advised him, as if in friendship, “not to indulge such unreasonable expectations, or elevate his thoughts above his station; that all things were not to be coveted by all men; that his present condition ought to satisfy him; and, finally, that he should be cautious of asking from the Roman people what they might justly refuse him.” Having made these and similar remarks, and finding that the resolution of Marius was not at all affected by them, he told him “that he would grant what he desired as soon as the public business would allow him. On Marius repeating his request several times afterwards, he is reported to have said, “that he need not be in a hurry to go, as he would be soon enough if he became a candidate with his own son.” Metellus’s son was then on service in the camp with his father, and was about twenty years old.
This taunt served only to rouse the feelings of Marius, as well for the honour at which he aimed, as against Metellus. He suffered himself to be actuated, therefore, by ambition and resentment, the worst of counsellors. He omitted nothing henceforward, either in deed or words, that could increase his own popularity. He allowed the soldiers, of whom he had the command in the winter quarters, more relaxation of discipline than he had ever granted them before. He talked of the war among the merchants, of whom there was a great number at Utica, censoriously with respect to Metellus, and vauntingly with regard to himself; saying “that if but half of the army were granted him, he would in a few days have Jugurtha in chains; but that the war was purposely protracted by the consul, because, being a man of vanity and regal pride, he was too fond of the delights of power.” All these assertions appeared the more credible to the merchants, as, by the long continuance of the war, they had suffered in their fortunes; and to impatient minds no haste is sufficient.
There was then in our army a Numidian named Gauda, the son of Mastanabal, and grandson of Masinissa, whom Micipsa, in his will, had appointed next heir to his immediate successors. This man had been debilitated by ill-health, and, from the effect of it, was somewhat impaired in his understanding. He had petitioned Metellus to allow him a seat, like a prince, next to himself, and a troop of horse for a body-guard; but Metellus had refused him both; the seat, because it was granted only to those whom the Roman people had addressed as kings, and the guard, because it would be an indignity to Roman cavalry to act as guards to a Numidian. While Gauda was discontented at these refusals, Marius paid him a visit, and prompted him, with his assistance, to seek revenge for the affronts put upon him by the general; inflating his mind, which was as weak as his body, with flattering speeches, telling him that he was a prince, a great man, and the grandson of Masinissa; that if Jugurtha were taken or killed, he would immediately become king of Numidia; and that this event might soon happen, if he himself were sent as consul to the war.
Thus partly the influence of Marius himself, and partly the hope of obtaining peace, induced Gauda, as well as most of the Roman knights, both soldiers and merchants, to write to their friends at Rome, in a style of censure, respecting Metellus’s management of the war, and to intimate that Marius should be appointed general. The consulship, accordingly, was solicited for him by numbers of people, with the most honourable demonstrations in his favour. It happened that the people too, at this juncture, having just triumphed over the nobility by the Mamilian law, were eager to raise commoners to office. Hence everything was favourable to Marius’s views.
Jugurtha, meantime, who, after relinquishing his intention to surrender, had renewed the war, was now hastening the preparations for it with the utmost diligence. He assembled an army; he endeavoured, by threats or promises, to recover the towns that had revolted from him; he fortified advantageous positions; he repaired or purchased arms, weapons, and other necessaries, which he had given up on the prospect of peace; he tried to seduce the slaves of the Romans, and even tempted with bribes the Romans themselves who occupied the garrisons; he, indeed, left nothing untried or neglected, but put every engine in motion.
Induced by the entreaties of their king, from whom, indeed, they had never been alienated in affection, the leading inhabitants of Vacca, a city in which Metellus, when Jugurtha began to treat for peace, had placed a garrison, entered into a conspiracy against the Romans. As for the common people of the town, they were, as is generally the case, and especially among the Numidians, of a fickle disposition, factious and turbulent, and therefore already desirous of a change, and adverse to peace and quiet. Having arranged their plans, they fixed upon the third day following for the execution of them, because that day, being a festival, celebrated throughout Africa, would promise merriment and dissipation rather than alarm. When the time came, they invited the centurions and military tribunes, with Titus Turpilius Silanus, the governor of the town, to their several houses, and butchered them all, except Turpilius, at their banquets; and then fell upon the common soldiers, who, as was to be expected on such a day, when discipline was relaxed, were wandering about without their arms. The populace followed the example of their chiefs, some of them having been previously instructed to do so, and others induced by a liking for such disorders, and, though ignorant of what had been done or intended, finding sufficient gratification in tumult and variety.
The Roman soldiers, perplexed with sudden alarm, and not knowing what was best for them to do, were in trepidation. At the citadel, where their standards and shields were, was posted a guard of the enemy; and the city-gates, previously closed, prevented escape. Women and children, too, on the roofs of the houses, hurled down upon them, with great eagerness, stones and whatever else their position furnished. Thus neither could such twofold danger be guarded against, nor could the bravest resist the feeblest; the worthy and the worthless, the valiant and the cowardly, were alike put to death unavenged. In the midst of this slaughter, whilst the Numidians were exercising every cruelty, and the town was closed on all sides, Turpilius was the only one, of all the Italians, that escaped unhurt. Whether his flight was the consequence of compassion in his entertainer, of compact, or of chance, I have never discovered; but since, in such a general massacre, he preferred inglorious safety to an honourable name, he seems to have been a worthless and infamous character .
When Metellus heard of what had happened at Vacca, he retired for a time, overpowered with sorrow, from the public gaze; but at length, as indignation mingled with his grief, he hastened, with the utmost spirit, to take vengeance for the outrage. He led forth, at sunset, the legion that was in winter quarters with him, and as many Numidian horse as he could, and arrived, about the third hour on the following day, at a certain plain surrounded by rising grounds. Here he acquainted the soldiers, who were now exhausted with the length of their march, and averse to further exertion, that the town of Vacca was not above a mile distant; and that it became them to bear patiently the toil that remained, with the hope of exacting revenge for their countrymen, the bravest and most unfortunate of men. He likewise generously promised them the whole of the plunder. Their courage being thus revived, he ordered them to resume their march, the cavalry maintaining an extended line in front, and the infantry, with their standards concealed, keeping the closest order behind.
The people of Vacca, perceiving an army coming towards them, judged rightly at first that it was Metellus, and shut their gates; but, after a while, when they saw that their fields were not laid waste, and that the front consisted of Numidian cavalry, they imagined that it was Jugurtha, and went out with great joy to meet him. A signal being immediately given, both cavalry and infantry commenced an attack; some cut down the multitude pouring from the town, others hurried to the gates, others secured the towers, revenge and the hope of plunder prevailing over their weariness. Thus Vacca triumphed only two days in its treachery; the whole city, which was great and opulent, was given up to vengeance and spoliation. Turpilius, the governor, whom we mentioned as the only person that escaped, was summoned by Metellus to answer for his conduct, and not being able to clear himself, was condemned, as a native of Latium, to be scourged and put to death.
About this time, Bomilcar, at whose persuasion Jugurtha had entered upon the capitulation which he had discontinued through fear, being distrusted by the king, and distrusting him in return, grew desirous of a change of government. He accordingly meditated schemes for Jugurtha’s destruction, racking his invention night and day. At last, to leave nothing untried, he sought an accomplice in Nabdalsa, a man of noble birth and great wealth, who was in high regard and favour with his countrymen, and who, on most occasions, used to command a body of troops distinct from those of the king, and to transact all business to which Jugurtha, from fatigue, or from being occupied with more important matters, was unable to attend; employments by which he had gained both honours and wealth. By these two men in concert, a day was fixed for the execution of their treachery; succeeding matters they agreed to settle as the exigencies of the moment might require. Nabdalsa then proceeded to join his troops, which he kept in readiness, according to orders, among the winter quarters of the Romans, to prevent the country from being ravaged by the enemy with impunity.
But as Nabdalsa, growing alarmed at the magnitude of the undertaking, failed to appear at the appointed time, and allowed his fears to hinder their plans, Bomilcar, eager for their execution, and disquieted at the timidity of his associate, lest he should relinquish his original intentions and adopt some new course, sent him a letter by some confidential persons, in which he “reproached him with pusillanimity and irresolution, and conjured him by the gods, by whom he had sworn, not to turn the offers of Metellus to his own destruction;” assuring him “that the fall of Jugurtha was approaching; that the only thing to be considered was whether he should perish by their hand or by that of Metellus; and that, in consequence, he might consider whether to choose rewards, or death by torture.”
It happened that when this letter was brought, Nabdalsa, overcome with fatigue, was reposing on his couch, where, after reading Bomilcar’s letter, anxiety at first, and afterwards, as is usual with a troubled mind, sleep overpowered him. In his service there was a certain Numidian, the manager of his affairs, a person who possessed his confidence and esteem, and who was acquainted with all his designs except the last. He, hearing that a letter had arrived, and supposing that there would be occasion, as usual, for his assistance or suggestions, went into the tent, and, whilst his master was asleep, took up the letter thrown carelessly upon the cushion behind his head, and read it; and, having thus discovered the plot, set off in haste to Jugurtha. Nabdalsa, who awoke soon after, missing the letter, and hearing of the whole affair, and how it happened, at first attempted to pursue the informer, but finding that pursuit was vain, he went himself to Jugurtha, to try to appease him; saying that the disclosure which he intended to make, had been anticipated by the perfidy of his servant; and beseeching him with tears, by his friendship, and by his own former proofs of fidelity, not to think that he could be guilty of such treachery.
To these intreaties the king replied with a mildness far different from his real feelings. After putting to death Bomilcar, and many others whom he knew to be privy to the plot, he refrained from any further manifestation of resentment, lest an insurrection should be the consequence of it. But after this occurrence he had no peace either by day or by night; he thought himself safe neither in any place, nor with any person, nor at any time; he feared his subjects and his enemies alike; he was always on the watch, and was startled at every sound; he passed the night sometimes in one place, and sometimes in another, and often in places little suited to royal dignity; and sometimes, starting from his sleep, he would seize his arms and raise an alarm. He was indeed so agitated by extreme terror, that he appeared under the influence of madness.
Metellus, hearing from some deserters of the fate of Bomilcar, and the discovery of the conspiracy, made fresh preparations for action, and with the utmost despatch, as if entering upon an entirely new war. Marius, who was still importuning him for leave of absence, he allowed to go home; thinking that as he served with reluctance, and bore him personal enmity, he was not likely to prove a very useful officer.
The common people at Rome, having learned the contents of the letters written from Africa concerning Metellus and Marius, had listened to the accounts given of both with eagerness. But the noble birth of Metellus, which had previously been a motive for paying him honour, had now become a cause of unpopularity; while the obscurity of Marius’s origin had procured him favour. In regard to both, however, party feeling had more influence than the good or bad qualities of either. The factious tribunes, too, inflamed the populace, charging Metellus, in their harangues, with offences worthy of death, and exaggerating the excellent qualities of Marius. At length the people were so excited, that all the artisans and rustics, whose whole subsistence and credit depended on their labour, quitting their several employments, attended Marius in crowds, and thought less of their own wants than of his exaltation. Thus the nobility being borne down, the consulship, after the lapse of many years, was once more given to a man of humble birth. And afterwards, when the people were asked by Manilius Mancinus, one of their tribunes, whom they would appoint to carry on the war against Jugurtha, they, in a full assembly, voted it to Marius. The senate had previously decreed it to Metellus; but that decree was thus rendered abortive.
During this period, Jugurtha, as he was bereft of his friends (of whom he had put to death the greater number, while the rest, under the influence of terror, had fled partly to the Romans, and partly to Bocchus), as the war, too, could not be carried on without officers, and as he thought it dangerous to try the faith of new ones after such perfidy among the old, was involved in doubt and perplexity; no scheme, no counsel, no person could satisfy him; he changed his route and his captains daily; he hurried sometimes against the enemy, and sometimes towards the deserts; depended at one time on flight, and at another on resistance; and was unable to decide whether he could less trust the courage or the fidelity of his subjects. Thus, in whatever direction he turned his thoughts, the prospect was equally disheartening.
In the midst of his irresolution, Metellus suddenly made his appearance with his army. The Numidians were assembled and drawn up by Jugurtha, as well as time permitted; and a battle was at once commenced. Where the king commanded in person, the struggle was maintained for some time; but the rest of his force was routed and put to flight at the first onset. The Romans took a considerable number of standards and arms, but not many prisoners; for, in almost every battle, their feet afforded more security to the Numidians than their swords.
In consequence of this defeat, Jugurtha, feeling less confidence in the state of his affairs than ever, retreated with the deserters, and part of his cavalry, first into the deserts, and afterwards to Thala, a large and opulent city, where lay the greater portion of his treasures, and where there was magnificent provision for the education of his children. When Metellus was informed of this, although he knew that there was, between Thala and the nearest river, a dry and desert region fifty miles broad, yet, in the hope of finishing the war if he should gain possession of the town, he resolved to surmount all difficulties, and to conquer even Nature herself. He gave orders that the beasts of burden, therefore, should be lightened of all the baggage excepting ten days’ provision; and that they should be laden with skins and other utensils for holding water. He also collected from the fields as many labouring cattle as he could find, and loaded them with vessels of all sorts, but chiefly wooden, taken from the cottages of the Numidians. He directed such of the neighbouring people, too, as had submitted to him after the retreat of Jugurtha, to bring him as much water as they could carry, appointing a time and place for them to be in attendance. He then loaded his beasts from the river, which, as I have intimated, was the nearest water to the town, and, thus provided, set out for Thala.
When he came to the place at which he had desired the Numidians to meet him, and had pitched and fortified his camp, so copious a fall of rain is said to have appeared, as would have furnished more than sufficient water for his whole army. Provisions, too, were brought him far beyond his expectations; for the Numidians, like most people after a recent surrender, had done more than was required of them. The men, however, from a religious feeling, preferred using the rain-water; the fall of which greatly increased their courage, for they thought themselves the peculiar care of the gods. On the next day, to the surprise of Jugurtha, they arrived at Thala. The inhabitants, who had thought themselves secured by the difficulties of the approach to them, were astonished at so strange and unexpected a sight, but, nevertheless, prepared for their defence. Our men showed equal alacrity on their side.
But Jugurtha himself, believing that to Metellus, who, by his exertions, had triumphed over every obstacle, over arms, deserts, seasons, and finally over Nature herself that controls all, nothing was impossible, fled with his children, and a great portion of his treasure, from the city during the night. Nor did he ever, after this time, continue more than one day or night in any place; pretending to be hurried away by business, but in reality dreading treachery, which he thought he might escape by change of residence, as schemes of such a kind are the consequence of leisure and opportunity.
Metellus, seeing that the people of Thala were determined on resistance, and that the town was defended both by art and situation, surrounded the walls with a rampart and a trench. He then directed his machines against the most eligible points, threw up a mound, and erected towers upon it to protect the works and the workmen. The townsmen, on the other hand, were exceedingly active and diligent; and nothing was neglected on either side. At last the Romans, though exhausted with much previous fatigue and fighting, got possession, forty days after their arrival, of the town, and the town only; for all the spoil had been destroyed by the deserters; who, when they saw the walls shaken by the battering-ram, and their own situation desperate, had conveyed the gold and silver, and whatever else is esteemed valuable, to the royal palace, where, after being sated with wine and luxuries, they destroyed the treasures, the building, and themselves, by fire, and thus voluntarily submitted to the sufferings which, in case of being conquered, they dreaded at the hands of the enemy.
At the very time that Thala was taken, there came to Metellus ambassadors from the city of Leptis, requesting him to send them a garrison and a governor; saying “that a certain Hamilcar, a man of rank, and of a factious disposition, against whom the magistrates and the laws were alike powerless, was trying to induce them to change sides; and that unless he attended to the matter promptly, their own safety, and the allies of Rome, would be in the utmost danger.” For the people at Leptis, at the very commencement of the war with Jugurtha, had sent to the consul Bestia, and afterwards to Rome, desiring to be admitted into friendship and alliance with us. Having been granted their request, they continued true and faithful adherents to us, and promptly executed all orders from Bestia, Albinus, and Metellus. They therefore readily obtained from the general the aid which they solicited; and four cohorts of Ligurians were despatched to Leptis, with Caius Annius to be governor of the place.
This city was built by a party of Sidonians, who, as I have understood, being driven from their country through civil dissensions, came by sea into those parts of Africa. It is situated between the two Syrtes, which take their name from their nature. These are two gulfs almost at the extremity of Africa, of unequal size, but of similar character. Those parts of them next to the land are very deep; the other parts sometimes deep and sometimes shallow, as chance may direct; for when the sea swells, and is agitated by the winds, the waves roll along with them mud, sand, and huge stones; and thus the appearance of the gulfs changes with the direction of the wind.
Of this people, the language alone has been altered by their intermarriages with the Numidians; their laws and customs continue for the most part Sidonian; which they have preserved with the greater ease, through living at so great a distance from the king’s dominions. Between them and the populous parts of Numidia lie vast and uncultivated deserts.
Since the affairs of Leptis have led me into these regions, it will not be foreign to my subject to relate the noble and singular act of two Carthaginians, which the place has brought to my recollection.
At the time when the Carthaginians were masters of the greater part of Africa, the Cyrenians were also a great and powerful people. The territory that lay between them was sandy, and of a uniform appearance, without a stream or a hill to determine their respective boundaries; a circumstance which involved them in a severe and protracted war. After armies and fleets had been routed and put to flight on both sides, and each people had greatly weakened their opponents, fearing lest some third party should attack both victors and vanquished in a state of exhaustion, they came to an agreement, during a short cessation of arms, “that on a certain day deputies should leave home on either side, and that the spot where they should meet should be the common boundary between the two states.” From Carthage, accordingly, were despatched two brothers, who were named Philæni, and who travelled with great expedition. The deputies of the Cyrenians proceeded more slowly; but whether from indolence or accident I have not been informed. However, a storm of wind in these deserts will cause obstruction to passengers not less than at sea; for when a violent blast, sweeping over a level surface devoid of vegetation, raises the sand from the ground, it is driven onward with great force, and fills the mouth and eyes on the traveller, and thus, by hindering his view, retards his progress. The Cyrenian deputies, finding that they had lost ground, and dreading punishment at home for their mismanagement, accused the Carthaginians of having left home before the time; quarrelling about the matter, and preferring to do anything rather than submit. The Philæni, upon this, asked them to name any other mode of settling the controversy, provided it were equitable; and the Cyrenians gave them their choice, “either that they should be buried alive in the spot which they claimed as the boundary for their people, or that they themselves, on the same conditions, should be allowed to go forward to whatever point they should think proper.” The Philæni, having accepted the conditions, sacrificed themselves to the interest of their country, and were interred alive. The people of Carthage consecrated altars to the brothers on the spot; and other honours were instituted to them at home. I now return to my subject.
After the loss of Thala, Jugurtha, thinking no place sufficiently secure against Metellus, fled with a few followers into the country of the Getulians, a people savage and uncivilised, and, at that period, unacquainted with even the name of Rome. Of these barbarians he collected a great multitude, and trained them by degrees to march in ranks, to follow standards, to obey the word of command, and to perform other military exercises. He also gained over to his interest, by large presents and larger promises, the intimate friends of king Bocchus, and working upon the king by their means, induced him to commence war against the Romans. This was the more practicable and easy, because Bocchus, at the commencement of hostilities with Jugurtha, had sent an embassy to Rome to solicit friendship and alliance; but a faction, blinded by avarice, and accustomed to sell their votes on every question honourable or dishonourable, had caused his advances to be rejected, though they were of the highest consequence to the war recently begun. A daughter of Bocchus, too, was married to Jugurtha; but such a connexion, among the Numidians and Moors, is but lightly regarded; for every man has as many wives as he pleases, in proportion to his ability to maintain them; some ten, others more, but the kings most of all. Thus the affection of the husband is divided among a multitude; no one of them becomes a companion to him, but all are equally neglected.
The two kings, with their armies, met in a place settled by mutual agreement, where, after pledges of amity were given and received, Jugurtha inflamed the mind of Bocchus by observing that the Romans were a lawless people, of insatiable covetousness, and the common enemies of mankind; that they had the same motive for making war on Bocchus as on himself and other nations, the lust of dominion; that all independent states were objects of hatred to them; at present, for instance, himself; a little before, the Carthaginians had been so, as well as king Perses; and that, in future, as any sovereign became conspicuous for his power, so would he assuredly be treated as an enemy by the Romans.”
Induced by these and similar considerations, they determined to march against Cirta, where Metellus had deposited his plunder, prisoners, and baggage. Jugurtha supposed that, if he took the city, there would be ample recompense for his exertions; or that, if the Roman general came to succour his adherents, he would have the opportunity of engaging him in the field. He also hastened this movement from policy, to lessen Bocchus’s chance of peace; lest, if delay should be allowed, he should decide upon something different from war.
Metellus, when he heard of the confederacy of the kings, did not rashly, or in every place, give opportunities of fighting, as he had been used to do since Jugurtha had been so often defeated, but, fortifying his camp, awaited the approach of the two kings at no great distance from Cirta; thinking it better, when he should have learned something of the Moors, as they were new enemies in the field, to give battle on an advantage.
In the mean time he was informed, by letters from Rome, that the province of Numidia was assigned to Marius, of whose election to the consulship he had already heard.
Being affected as these occurrences beyond what was proper and decorous, he could neither restrain his tears nor govern his tongue; for though he was a man eminent in other respects, he had too little firmness in bearing trouble of mind. His irritation was by some imputed to pride; others said that a noble spirit was wounded by insult; many thought him chagrined because victory, just attained, was snatched from his grasp. But to me it is well known that he was more troubled at the honour bestowed on Marius than at the injustice done to himself; and that he would have shown much less uneasiness if the province of which he was deprived had been given to any other than Marius.
Discouraged, therefore, by such a mortification, and thinking it folly to promote another man’s success at his own hazard, he sent deputies to Bocchus, intreating him “not to become an enemy to the Romans without cause;” and observing “that he had a fine opportunity of entering into friendship and alliance with them, which were far preferable to war; that though he might have confidence in his resources, he ought not to change certainties for uncertainties; that a war was easily begun, but discontinued with difficulty; that its commencement and conclusion were not dependent on the same party; that any one, even a coward, might commence hostilities, but that they could be broken off only when the conqueror thought proper; and that he should therefore consult for his interest and that of his kingdom, and not connect his own prosperous circumstances with the ruined fortunes of Jugurtha.” To these representations the king mildly answered, “that he desired peace, but felt compassion for the condition of Jugurtha, to whom if similar proposals were made, all would easily be arranged.” Metellus, in reply to this request of Bocchus, sent deputies with overtures, of which the king approved some, and rejected others. Thus, in sending messengers to and fro, the time passed away, and the war, according to the consul’s desire, was protracted without being advanced.
Marius, who, as I said before, had been made consul with great eagerness on the part of the populace, began, though he had always been hostile to the patricians, to inveigh against them, after the people gave him the province of Numidia, with great frequency and violence; he attacked them sometimes individually and sometimes in a body; he said that he had snatched from them the consulship as spoils from vanquished enemies; and uttered other remarks laudatory to himself and offensive to them. Meanwhile he made the provision for the war his chief object; he asked for reinforcements for the legions; he sent for auxiliaries from foreign states, kings, and allies; he also enlisted all the bravest men from Latium, most of whom were known to him by actual service, some few only by report, and induced, by earnest solicitation, even discharged veterans to accompany him. Nor did the senate, though adverse to him, dare to refuse him anything; the additions to the legions they had voted even with eagerness, because military service was thought to be unpopular with the multitude, and Marius seemed likely to lose either the means of warfare, or the favour of the people. But such expectations were entertained in vain, so ardent was the desire of going with Marius that had seized on almost all. Every one cherished the fancy that he should return home laden with spoil, crowned with victory, or attended with some similar good fortune. Marius himself, too, had excited them in no small degree by a speech; for, when all that he required was granted, and he was anxious to commence a levy, he called an assembly of the people, as well to encourage them to enlist, as to inveigh, according to his practice, against the nobility. He spoke, on the occasion, as follows:
“I am aware, my fellow-citizens, that most men do not appear as candidates before you for an office, and conduct themselves in it when they have obtained it, under the same character; that they are at first industrious, humble, and modest, but afterwards lead a life of indolence and arrogance. But to me it appears that the contrary should be the case; for as the whole state is of greater consequence than the single office of consulate or prætorship, so its interests ought to be managed with the greater solicitude than these magistracies are sought. Nor am I insensible how great a weight of business I am, through your kindness, called upon to sustain. To make preparations for war, and yet to be sparing of the treasury; to press those into the service whom I am unwilling to offend; to direct everything at home and abroad; and to discharge these duties when surrounded by the envious, the hostile, and the factious, is more difficult, my fellow-citizens, than is generally imagined. In addition to this, if others fail in their undertakings, their ancient rank, the heroic actions of their ancestors, the power of their relatives and connexions, their numerous dependents, are all at hand to support them; but as for me, my whole hopes rest upon myself, which I must sustain by good conduct and integrity; for all other means are unavailing.
“I am sensible, too, my fellow-citizens, that the eyes of all men are turned upon me; that the just and good favour me, as my services are beneficial to the state, but that the nobility seek occasion to attack me. I must therefore use the greater exertion, that you may not be deceived in me, and that their views may be rendered abortive. I have led such a life, indeed, from my boyhood to the present hour, that I am familiar with every kind of toil and danger; and that exertion, which, before your kindness to me, I practised gratuitously, it is not my intention to relax after having received my reward. For those who have pretended to be men of worth only to secure their election, it may be difficult to conduct themselves properly in office; but to me, who have passed my whole life in the most honourable occupations, to act well has from habit become nature.
“You have commanded me to carry on the war against Jugurtha; a commission at which the nobility are highly offended. Consider with yourselves, I pray you, whether it would be a change for the better, if you were to send to this, or to any such appointment, one of yonder crowd of nobles, a man of ancient family, of innumerable statues, and of no military experience; in order, forsooth, that in so important an office, and being ignorant of everything connected with it, he may exhibit hurry and trepidation, and select one of the people to instruct him in his duty. For so it generally happens, that he whom you have chosen to direct, seeks another to direct him. I know some, my fellow-citizens, who, after they have been elected consuls, have begun to read the acts of their ancestors, and the military precepts of the Greeks; persons who invert the order of things; for though to discharge the duties of the office is posterior, in point of time, to election, it is, in reality and practical importance, prior to it.
“Compare now, my fellow-citizens, me, who am a new man, with those haughty nobles. What they have but heard or read, I have witnessed or performed. What they have learned from books, I have acquired in the field; and whether deeds or words are of greater estimation, it is for you to consider. They despise my humbleness of birth; I contemn their imbecility. My condition is made an objection to me; their misconduct is a reproach to them. The circumstance of birth, indeed, I consider as one and the same to all; but think that he who best exerts himself is the noblest. And could it be inquired of the fathers, of Albinus and Bestia, whether they would rather be the parents of them or of me, what do you suppose that they would answer, but that they would wish the most deserving to be their offspring? If the patricians justly despise me, let them also despise their own ancestors, whose nobility, like me, had its origin in merit. They envy me the honour that I have received; let them also envy me the toils, the abstinence, and the perils, by which I obtained that honour. But they, men eaten up with pride, live as if they disdained all the distinctions that you can bestow, and yet sue for those distinctions as if they had lived so as to merit them. Yet those are assuredly deceived, who expect to enjoy, at the same time, things so incompatible as the pleasures of indolence and the rewards of honourable exertion.
“When they speak before you, or in the senate, they occupy the greatest part of their orations in extolling their ancestors; for, they suppose that, by recounting the heroic deeds of their forefathers, they render themselves more illustrious. But the reverse of this is the case; for the more glorious were the lives of their ancestors, the more scandalous is their own inaction. The truth, indeed, is plainly this, that the glory of ancestors sheds a light on their posterity, which suffers neither their virtues nor their vices to be concealed. Of this light, my fellow-citizens, I have no share; but I have, what confers much more distinction, the power of relating my own actions. Consider, then, how unreasonable they are; what they claim for themselves for the merit of others, they will not grant to me for my own; alleging, forsooth, that I have no statues, and that my distinction is newly acquired; but it is surely better to have acquired such distinction myself than to bring disgrace on that received from others.
“I am not ignorant, that, if they were inclined to reply to me, they would make an abundant display of eloquent and artful language. Yet, since they attack both you and myself, on occasion of the great favour which you have conferred upon me, I did not think proper to be silent before them, lest any one should construe my forbearance into a consciousness of demerit. As for myself, indeed, nothing that is said of me, I feel assured, can do me injury; for what is true, must of necessity speak in my favour; what is false, my life and character will refute. But since your judgment, in bestowing on me so distinguished an honour and so important a trust, is called in question, consider, I beseech you, again and again, whether you are likely to repent of what you have done. I cannot, to raise your confidence in me, boast of the statues, or triumphs, or consulships of my ancestors; but, if it be thought necessary, I can show you spears, a banner, caparisons for horses, and other military rewards; besides the scars of wounds on my breast. These are my statues; this is my nobility; honours, not left, like theirs, by inheritance, but acquired amidst innumerable toils and dangers.
“My speech, they say, is inelegant; but that I have ever thought of little importance. Worth sufficiently displays itself; it is for my detractors to use studied language, that they may palliate base conduct by plausible words. Nor have I learned Greek; for I had no wish to acquire a tongue that adds nothing to the valour of those who teach it. But I have gained other accomplishments, such as are of the utmost benefit to a state; I have learned to strike down an enemy; to be vigilant at my post; to fear nothing but dishonour; to bear cold and heat with equal endurance; to sleep on the ground; and to sustain at the same time hunger and fatigue. And with such rules of conduct I shall stimulate my soldiers, not treating them with rigour and myself with indulgence, nor making their toils my glory. Such a mode of commanding is at once useful to the state, and becoming to a citizen. For to coerce your troops with severity, while you yourself live at ease, is to be a tyrant, not a general.
“It was by conduct such as this, my fellow-citizens, that your ancestors made themselves and the republic renowned. Our nobility, relying on their forefathers’ merits, though totally different from them in conduct, disparage us who emulate their virtues; and demand of you every public honour, as due, not to their personal merit, but to their high rank. Arrogant pretenders, and utterly unreasonable! For though their ancestors left them all that was at their disposal, their riches, their statues, and their glorious names, they left them not, nor could leave them, their virtue; which alone, of all their possessions, could neither be communicated nor received.
“They reproach me as being mean, and of unpolished manners, because, forsooth, I have but little skill in arranging an entertainment, and keep no actor, nor give my cook higher wages than my steward; all which charges I must, indeed, acknowledge to be just; for I learned from my father, and other venerable characters, that vain indulgences belong to women, and labour to men; that glory, rather than wealth, should be the object of the virtuous; and that arms and armour, not household furniture, are marks of honour. But let the nobility, if they please, pursue what is delightful and dear to them; let them pass their age as they have passed their youth, in revelry and feasting, the slaves of gluttony and debauchery; but let them leave the toil and dust of the field, and other such matters, to us, to whom they are more grateful than banquets. This, however, they will not do; for when these most infamous of men have disgraced themselves by every species of turpitude, they proceed to claim the distinctions due to the most honourable. Thus it most unjustly happens that luxury and indolence, the most disgraceful of vices, are harmless to those who indulge in them, and fatal only to the innocent commonwealth.
“As I have now replied to my calumniators, as far as my own character required, though not so fully as their flagitiousness deserved, I shall add a few words on the state of public affairs. In the first place, my fellow-citizens, be of good courage with regard to Numidia; for all that hitherto protected Jugurtha, avarice, inexperience, and arrogance, you have entirely removed. There is an army in it, too, which is well acquainted with the country, though, assuredly, more brave than fortunate; for a great part of it has been destroyed by the avarice or rashness of its commanders. Such of you, then, as are of military age, co-operate with me, and support the cause of your country; and let no discouragement, from the ill-fortune of others, or the arrogance of the late commanders, affect any one of you. I myself shall be with you, both on the march and in the battle, both to direct your movements and to share your dangers. I shall treat you and myself on every occasion alike; and, doubtless, with the aid of the gods, all good things, victory, spoil, and glory, are ready to our hands; though, even if they were doubtful or distant, it would still become every able citizen to act in defence of his country. For no man, by slothful timidity, has escaped the lot of mortals; nor has any parent wished for his children that they might live for ever, but rather that they might act in life with virtue and honour. I would add more, my fellow-citizens, if words could give courage to the faint-hearted; to the brave I think that I have said enough.”
After having spoken to this effect, Marius, when he found that the minds of the populace were excited, immediately freighted vessels with provisions, pay, arms, and other necessaries, and ordered Aulus Manlius, his lieutenant-general, to set sail with them. He himself, in the mean time, proceeded to enlist soldiers, not after the ancient method, or from the classes, but taking all that were willing to join him, and the greater part from the lowest ranks. Some said that this was done from a scarcity of better men, and others from the consul’s desire to pay court to the poorer class, because it was by that order of men that he had been honoured and promoted; and, indeed, to a man grasping at power, the most needy are the most serviceable, persons to whom their property (as they have none) is not an object of care, and to whom everything lucrative appears honourable. Setting out, accordingly, for Africa, with a somewhat larger force than had been decreed, he arrived in a few days at Utica. The command of the army was resigned to him by Publius Rutilius, Metellus’s lieutenant-general; for Metellus himself avoided the sight of Marius, that he might not see what he could not even endure to hear mentioned.
Marius, having filled up his legions and auxiliary cohorts, marched into a part of the country which was fertile and abundant in spoil, where, whatever he captured, he gave up to his soldiers. He then attacked such fortresses or towns as were ill defended by nature or with troops, and ventured on several engagements, though only of a light character, in different places. The new recruits, in process of time, began to join in an encounter without fear; they saw that such as fled were taken prisoners or slain; that the bravest were the safest; that liberty, their country, and parents, are defended, and glory and riches acquired, by arms. Thus the new and old troops soon became as one body, and the courage of all was rendered equal.
The two kings, when they heard of the approach of Marius, retreated, by separate routes, into parts that were difficult of access; a plan which had been proposed by Jugurtha, who hoped that, in a short time, the enemy might be attacked when dispersed over the country, supposing that the Roman soldiers, like the generality of troops, would be less careful and observant of discipline when the fear of danger was removed.
Metellus, meanwhile, having taken his departure for Rome, was received there, contrary to his expectation, with the greatest feelings of joy, being equally welcomed, since public prejudice had subsided, by both the people and the patricians.
Marius continued to attend, with equal activity and prudence, to his own affairs and those of the enemy. He observed what would be advantageous, or the contrary, to either party; he watched the movements of the kings, counteracted their intentions and stratagems, and allowed no remissness in his own army, and no security in that of the enemy. He accordingly attacked and dispersed, on several occasions, the Getulians and Jugurtha on their march, as they were carrying off spoil from our allies; and he obliged the king himself, near the town of Cirta, to take flight without his arms. But finding that such enterprises merely gained him honour, without tending to terminate the war, he resolved on investing, one after another, all the cities, which, by the strength of their garrisons or situation, were best suited either to support the enemy, or to resist himself; so that Jugurtha would either be deprived of his fortresses, if he suffered them to be taken, or be forced to come to an engagement in their defence. As to Bocchus, he had frequently sent messengers to Marius, saying that he desired the friendship of the Roman people, and that the consul need fear no act of hostility from him. But whether he merely dissembled, with a view to attack us unexpectedly with greater effect, or whether, from fickleness of disposition, he habitually wavered between war and peace, was never fairly ascertained.
Marius, as he had determined, proceeded to attack the fortified towns and places of strength, and to detach them, partly by force, and partly by threats or offers of reward, from the enemy. His operations in this way, however, were at first but moderate; for he expected that Jugurtha, to protect his subjects, would soon come to an engagement. But finding that he kept at a distance, and was intent on other affairs, he thought it was time to enter upon something or greater importance and difficulty. Amidst the vast deserts there lay a great and strong city, named Capsa, the founder of which is said to have been the Libyan Hercules. Its inhabitants were exempted from taxes by Jugurtha, and under mild government, and were consequently regarded as the most faithful of his subjects. They were defended against enemies, not only by walls, magazines of arms, and bodies of troops, but still more by the difficulty of approaching them; for, excepting the parts adjoining the walls, all the surrounding country is waste and uncultivated, destitute of water, and infested with serpents, whose fierceness, like that of other wild animals, is aggravated by want of food; while the venom of such reptiles, deadly in itself, is exacerbated by nothing so much as by thirst. Of this place Marius conceived a strong desire to make himself master, not only from its importance for the war, but because its capture seemed an enterprise of difficulty; for Metellus had gained great glory by taking Thala, a town similarly situated and fortified; except that at Thala there were several springs near the walls, while the people of Capsa had only one running stream, and that within the town, all the water which they used besides being rain-water. But this scarcity, both here and in other parts of Africa, where the people live rudely and remote from the sea, was endured with the greater ease, as the inhabitants subsist mostly on milk and wild beasts’ flesh, and use no salt, or other provocatives of appetite, their food being merely to satisfy hunger or thirst, and not to encourage luxury or excess.
The consul, having made all necessary investigations, and relying, I suppose, on the gods (for against such difficulties he could not well provide by his own forethought, as he was also straitened for want of corn, because the Numidians apply more to pasturage than agriculture, and had conveyed, by the king’s order, whatever corn had been raised into fortified places, while the ground at the time, it being the end of summer, was parched and destitute of vegetation), yet, under the circumstances, conducted his arrangements with great prudence. All the cattle, which had been taken for some days previous, he consigned to the care of the auxiliary cavalry; and directed Aulus Manlius, his lieutenant-general, to proceed with the light-armed cohorts to the town of Lares, where he had deposited provisions and pay for the army, telling him that, after plundering the country, he would join him there in a few days. Having by this means concealed his real design, he proceeded towards the river Tana.
On his march he distributed daily, to each division of the infantry and cavalry, an equal portion of the cattle, and gave orders that water-bottles should be made of their hides; thus compensating, at once, for the scarcity of corn, and providing, while all remained ignorant of his intention, utensils which would soon be of service. At the end of six days, accordingly, when he arrived at the river, a large number of bottles had been prepared. Having pitched his camp, with a slight fortification, he ordered his men to take refreshment, and to be ready to resume their march at sunset; and, having laid aside all their baggage, to load themselves and their beasts only with water. As soon as it seemed time, he quitted the camp, and, after marching the whole night, encamped again. The same course he pursued on the following night, and on the third, long before dawn, he reached a hilly spot of ground, not more than two miles distant from Capsa, where he waited, as secretly as possible, with his whole force. But when daylight appeared, and many of the Numidians, having no apprehensions of an enemy, went forth from the town, he suddenly ordered all the cavalry, and with them the lightest of the infantry, to hasten forward to Capsa, and secure the gates. He himself immediately followed, with the utmost ardour, restraining his men from plunder.
When the inhabitants perceived that the place was surprised, their state of consternation and extreme dread, the suddenness of the calamity, and the consideration that many of their fellow-citizens were without the walls in the power of the enemy, compelled them to surrender. The town, however, was burnt; of the Numidians, such as were of adult age, were put to the sword; the rest were sold, and the spoil divided among the soldiers. This severity, in violation of the usages of war, was not adopted from avarice or cruelty in the consul, but was exercised because the place was of great advantage to Jugurtha, and difficult of access to us, while the inhabitants were a fickle and faithless race, to be influenced neither by kindness nor by terror.
When Marius had achieved so important an enterprise, without any loss to his troops, he who was great and honoured before became still greater and still more honoured. All his undertakings, however ill-concerted, were regarded as proofs of superior ability; his soldiers, kept under mild discipline, and enriched with spoil, extolled him to the skies; the Numidians dreaded him as something more than human; and all, indeed, allies as well as enemies, believed that he was either possessed of supernatural power, or had all things directed for him by the will of the gods.
After his success in this attempt, he proceeded against other towns; a few, where they offered resistance, he took by force; a greater number, deserted in consequence of the wretched fate of Capsa, he destroyed by fire; and the whole country was filled with mourning and slaughter.
Having at length gained possession of many places, and most of them without loss to his army, he turned his thoughts to another enterprise, which, though not of the same desperate character as that at Capsa, was yet not less difficult of execution. Not far from the river Mulucha, which divided the kingdoms of Jugurtha and Bocchus, there stood, in the midst of a plain, a rocky hill, sufficiently broad at the top for a small fort; it rose to a vast height, and had but one narrow ascent left open, the whole of it being as steep by nature as it could have been rendered by labour and art. This place, as there were treasures of the king in it, Marius directed his utmost efforts to take. But his views were furthered more by fortune than by his own contrivance. In the fortress there were plenty of men and arms for its defence, as well as an abundant store of provisions, and a spring of water; while its situation was unfavourable for raising mounds, towers, and other works; and the road to it, used by its inhabitants, was extremely steep, with a precipice on either side. The vineæ were brought up with great danger, and without effect; for, before they were advanced any considerable distance, they were destroyed with fire or stones. And from the difficulties of the ground, the soldiers could neither stand in front of the works, nor act among the vineæ, without danger; the boldest of them were killed or wounded, and the fear of the rest increased.
Marius having thus wasted much time and labour, began seriously to consider whether he should abandon the attempt as impracticable, or wait for the aid of Fortune, whom he had so often found favourable. Whilst he was revolving the matter in his mind, during several days and nights, in a state of much doubt and perplexity, it happened that a certain Ligurian, a private soldier in the auxiliary cohorts, having gone out of the camp to fetch water, observed, near that part of the fort which was farthest from the besiegers, some snails crawling among the rocks, of which, when he had picked up one or two, and afterwards more, he gradually proceeded, in his eagerness for collecting them, almost to the top of the hill. When he found this part deserted, a desire, incident to the human mind, of seeing what he had never seen, took violent possession of him. A large oak chanced to grow out among the rocks, at first, for a short distance, horizontally, and then, as nature directs all vegetables, turning and shooting upwards. Raising himself sometimes on the boughs of this tree, and sometimes on the projecting rocks, the Ligurian, as all the Numidians were intently watching the besiegers, took a full survey of the platform of the fortress. Having observed whatever he thought it would afterwards prove useful to know, he descended the same way, not unobservantly, as he had gone up, but exploring and noticing all the peculiarities of the path. He then hastened to Marius, acquainted him with what he had done, and urged him to attack the fort on that side where he had ascended, offering himself to lead the way and the attempt. Marius sent some of those about him, along with the Ligurian, to examine the practicability of his proposal, who, according to their several dispositions, reported the affair as difficult or easy. The consul’s hopes, however, were somewhat encouraged; and he accordingly selected, from his band of trumpeters and bugle-men, five of the most nimble, and with them four centurions for a guard; all of whom he directed to obey the Ligurian, appointing the next day for commencing the experiment.
When, according to their instructions, it seemed time to set out, the Ligurian, after preparing and arranging everything, proceeded to the place of ascent. Those who commanded the centuries, being previously by the guide, had changed their arms and dress, having their heads and feet bare, that their view upwards, and their progress among the rocks, might be less impeded; their swords were slung behind them, as well as their shields, which were Numidian, and made of leather, both for the sake of lightness, and in order that, if struck against any object, they might make less noise. The Ligurian went first, and tied to the rocks, and whatever roots of trees projected through age, a number of ropes, by which the soldiers supporting themselves might climb with the greatest ease. Such as were timorous, from the extraordinary nature of the path, he sometimes pulled up by the hand; when the ascent was extremely rugged, he sent them on singly before him without their arms, which he then carried up after them; whatever parts appeared unsafe, he first tried them himself, and, by going up and down repeatedly in the same place, and then standing aside, he inspired the rest with courage to proceed. At length, after uninterrupted and harassing exertion, they reached the fortress, which, on that side, was undefended, for all the occupants, as on other days, were intent on the enemy in the opposite quarter.
Though Marius had kept the attention of the Numidians during the whole day, fixed on his attacks, yet, when he heard from his scouts how the Ligurian had succeeded, he animated his soldiers to fresh exertions, and he himself, advancing beyond the vineæ, and causing a testudo to be formed, came up close under the walls, annoying the enemy, at the same time, with his engines, archers, and slingers, from a distance.
But the Numidians, having often before overturned and burnt the vineæ of the Romans, no longer confined themselves within the fortress, but spent day and night before the walls, railing at the Romans, upbraiding Marius with madness, threatening our soldiers with being made slaves to Jugurtha, and exhibiting the utmost audacity on account of their successful defence. In the mean time, while both the Romans and Numidians were engaged in the struggle, the one side contending for glory and dominion, the other for their very existence, the trumpets suddenly sounded a blast in the rear of the enemy, at which the women and children, who had gone out to view the contest, were the first to flee; next those who were nearest to the wall, and at length the whole of the Numidians, armed and unarmed, retreated within the fort. When this had happened, the Romans pressed upon the enemy with increasing boldness, dispersing them, and at first only wounding the greater part, but afterwards making their way over the bodies of those who fell, thirsting for glory, and striving who should be first to reach the wall; not a single individual being detained by the plunder. Thus the rashness of Marius, rendered successful by fortune, procured him renown from his very error.
During the progress of this affair, Lucius Sylla, Marius’s quæstor, arrived in the camp with a numerous body of cavalry, which he had been left at Rome to raise among the Latins and allies.
Of so eminent a man, since my subject brings him to my notice, I think it proper to give a brief account of the character and manners; for I shall in no other place allude to his affairs; and Lucius Sisenna, who has treated that subject the most ably and accurately of all writers, seems to me to have spoken with too little freedom. Sylla, then, was of patrician descent, but of a family almost sunk in obscurity by the degeneracy of his forefathers. He was skilled, equally and profoundly, in Greek and Roman literature. He was a man of large mind, fond of pleasure, but fonder of glory. His leisure was spent in luxurious gratifications, but pleasure never kept him from his duties, except that he might have acted more for his honour with regard to his wife. He was eloquent and subtle, and lived on the easiest terms with his friends. His depth of thought in disguising his intentions, was incredible; he was liberal of most things, but especially of money. And though he was the most fortunate of all men before his victory in the civil war, yet his fortune was never beyond his desert; and many have expressed a doubt whether his success or his merit were the greater. As to his subsequent acts, I know not whether more of shame or of regret must be felt at the recital of them.
When Sylla came with his cavalry into Africa, as has just been stated, and arrived at the camp of Marius, though he had hitherto been unskilled and undisciplined in the art of war, he became, in a short time, the most expert of the whole army. He was besides affable to the soldiers; he conferred favours on many at their request, and on others of his own accord, and was reluctant to receive any in return. But he repaid other obligations more readily than those of a pecuniary nature; he himself demanded repayment from no one; but rather made it his object that as many as possible should be indebted to him. He conversed, jocosely as well as seriously, with the humblest of the soldiers; he was their frequent companion at their works, on the march, and on guard. Nor did he ever, as is usual with depraved ambition, attempt to injure the character of the consul, or of any deserving person. His sole aim, whether in the council or the field, was to suffer none to excel him; to most he was superior. By such conduct he soon became a favourite both with Marius and with the army.
Jugurtha, after he had lost the city of Capsa, and other strong and important places, as well as a vast sum of money, despatched messengers to Bocchus, requesting him to bring his forces into Numidia as soon as possible, and stating that the time for giving battle was at hand. But finding that he hesitated, and was balancing the inducements to peace and war, he again corrupted his confidants, as on a previous occasion, with presents, and promised the Moor himself a third part of Numidia, should either the Romans be driven from Africa, or the war brought to an end without any diminution of his own territories. Being allured by this offer, Bocchus joined Jugurtha with a large force.
The armies of the kings being thus united, they attacked Marius, on his march to his winter quarters, when scarcely a tenth part of the day remained, expecting that the night, which was now coming on, would be a shelter to them if they were beaten, and no impediment if they should conquer, as they were well acquainted with the country, while either result would be worse for the Romans in the dark. At the very moment, accordingly, that Marius heard from various quarters of the enemy’s approach, the enemy themselves were upon him, and before the troops could either form themselves or collect the baggage, before they could receive even a signal or an order, the Moorish and Getulian horse, not in line, or any regular array of battle, but in separate bodies, as chance had united them, rushed furiously on our men; who, though all struck with a panic, yet, calling to mind what they had done on former occasions, either seized their arms, or protected those who were looking for theirs, while some, springing on their horses, advanced against the enemy. But the whole conflict was more like a rencounter with robbers than a battle; the horse and foot of the enemy, mingled together without standards or order, wounded some of our men, and cut down others, and surprised many in the rear while fighting stoutly with those in front; neither valour nor arms were a sufficient defence, the enemy being superior in numbers, and covering the field on all sides. At last the Roman veterans, who were necessarily well experienced in war, formed themselves, wherever the nature of the ground or chance allowed them to unite, in circular bodies, and thus secured on every side, and regularly drawn up, withstood the attacks of the enemy.
Marius, in this desperate emergency, was not more alarmed or disheartened than on any previous occasion, but rode about with his troop of cavalry, which he had formed of his bravest soldiers rather than his nearest friends, in every quarter of the field, sometimes supporting his own men when giving way, sometimes charging the enemy where they were thickest, and doing service to his troops with his sword, since, in the general confusion, he was unable to command with his voice.
The day had now closed, yet the barbarians abated nothing of their impetuosity, but, expecting that the night would be in their favour, pressed forward, as their kings had directed them, with increased violence. Marius, in consequence, resolved upon a measure suited to his circumstances, and, that his men might have a place of retreat, took possession of two hills contiguous to each other, on one of which, too small for a camp, there was an abundant spring of water, while the other, being mostly elevated and steep, and requiring little fortification, was suited for his purpose as a place of encampment. He then ordered Sylla, with a body of cavalry, to take his station for the night on the eminence containing the spring, whilst he himself collected his scattered troops by degrees, the enemy being not less disordered, and led them all at a quick march up the other hill. Thus the kings, obliged by the strength of the Roman position, were deterred from continuing the combat; yet they did not allow their men to withdraw to a distance, but, surrounding both hills with a large force, encamped without any regular order. Having then lighted numerous fires, the barbarians, after their custom, spent most of the night in merriment, exultation, and tumultuous clamour, the kings, elated at having kept their ground, conducting themselves as conquerors. This scene, plainly visible to the Romans, under cover of the night and on higher ground, afforded great encouragement to them.
Marius, accordingly, deriving much confidence from the imprudence of the enemy, ordered the strictest possible silence to be kept, not allowing even the trumpets, as was usual, to be sounded when the watches were changed; and then, when day approached, and the enemy were fatigued and just sinking to sleep, he ordered the sentinels, with the trumpeters of the auxiliary cohorts, cavalry, and legions, to sound all their instruments at once, and the soldiers, at the same time, to raise a shout, and sally forth from the camp upon the enemy. The Moors and Getulians, suddenly roused by the strange and terrible noise, could neither flee, nor take up arms, could neither act, nor provide for their security, so completely had fear, like a stupor, from the uproar and shouting, the absence of support, the charge of our troops, and the tumult and alarm, seized upon them all. The whole of them were consequently routed and put to flight; most of their arms, and military standards, were taken; and more were killed in this than in all the former battles, their escape being impeded by sleep and the sudden alarm.
Marius now continued the route, which he had commenced, towards his winter quarters, which, for the convenience of getting provisions, he had determined to fix in the towns on the coast. He was not, however, rendered careless or presumptuous by his victory, but marched with his army in form of a square, just as if he were in sight of the enemy. Sylla, with his cavalry, was on the right; Aulus Manlius, with the slingers and archers, and Ligurian cohorts, had the command on the left; the tribunes, with the light-armed infantry, the consul had placed in the front and rear. The deserters, whose lives were of little value, and who were well acquainted with the country, observed the route of the enemy. Marius himself, too, as if no other were placed in charge, attended to everything, went through the whole of the troops, and praised or blamed them according to their desert. He was always armed and on the alert, and obliged his men to imitate his example. He fortified his camp with the same caution with which he marched; stationing cohorts of the legions to watch the gates, and the auxiliary cavalry in front, and others upon the rampart and lines. He went round the posts in person, not from suspicion that his orders would not be observed, but that the labour of the soldiers, shared equally by their general, might be endured by them with cheerfulness. Indeed, Marius, as well at this as at other periods of the war, kept his men to their duty rather by the dread of shame than of severity; a course which many said was adopted from desire of popularity, but some thought it was because he took pleasure in toils to which he had been accustomed from his youth, and in exertions which other men call perfect miseries. The public interest, however, was served with as much efficiency and honour as it could have been under the most rigorous command.
At length, on the fourth day of his march, when he was not far from the town of Cirta, his scouts suddenly made their appearance from all quarters at once; a circumstance by which the enemy was known to be at hand. But as they came in from different points, and all gave the same account, the consul, doubting in what form to draw up his army, made no alteration in it, but halted where he was, being already prepared for every contingency. Jugurtha’s expectations, in consequence, disappointed him; for he had divided his force into four bodies, trusting that one of them, assuredly, would surprise the Romans in the rear. Sylla, meanwhile, with whom they first came in contact, having cheered on his men, charged the Moors, in person and with his officers, with troop after troop of cavalry, in the closest order possible; while the rest of his force, retaining their position, protected themselves against the darts thrown from a distance, and killed such of the enemy as fell into their hands.
While the cavalry was thus engaged, Bocchus, with his infantry, which his son Volux had brought up, and which, from delay on their march, had not been present in the former battle, assailed the Romans in the rear. Marius was at that moment occupied in front, as Jugurtha was there with his largest force. The Numidian king, hearing of the arrival of Bocchus, wheeled secretly about, with a few of his followers, to the infantry, and exclaimed in Latin, which he had learned to speak at Numantia, “that our men were struggling in vain; for that he had just slain Marius with his own hand;” showing, at the same time, his sword besmeared with blood, which he had, indeed, sufficiently stained by vigorously cutting down our infantry. When the soldiers heard this, they felt a shock, though rather at the horror of such an event, than from belief in him who asserted it; the barbarians, on the other hands, assumed fresh courage, and advanced with greater fury on the disheartened Romans, who were just on the point of taking to flight, when Sylla, having routed those to whom he had been opposed, fell upon the Moors in the flank. Bocchus instantly fled. Jugurtha, anxious to support his men, and to secure a victory so nearly won, was surrounded by our cavalry, and all his attendants, right and left, being slain, had to force a way alone, with great difficulty, through the weapons of the enemy. Marius, at the same time, having put to flight the cavalry, came up to support such of his men as he had understood to be giving ground. At last the enemy were defeated in every quarter. The spectacle on the open plains was then frightful; some were pursuing, others fleeing; some were being slain, others captured; men and horses were dashed to the earth; many, who were wounded, could neither flee nor remain at rest, attempting to rise, and instantly falling back; and the whole field, as far as the eye could reach, was strewed with arms and dead bodies, and the intermediate spaces saturated with blood.
At length the consul, now indisputably victor, arrived at the town of Cirta, whither he had at first intended to go. To this place, on the fifth day after the second defeat of the barbarians, came messengers from Bocchus, who, in the king’s name, requested of Marius to send him two persons in whom he had full confidence, as he wished to confer with them on matters concerning both the interest of the Roman people and his own. Marius immediately despatched Sylla and Aulus Manlius; who, though they went at the king’s invitation, thought proper, notwithstanding, to address him first, in the hope of altering his sentiments, if he were unfavourable to peace, or of strengthening his inclination, if he were disposed to it. Sylla, therefore, to whose superiority, not in years but in eloquence, Manlius yielded precedence, spoke to Bocchus briefly as follows:
“It gives us great pleasure, king Bocchus, that the gods have at length induced a man, so eminent as yourself, to prefer peace to war, and no longer to stain your own excellent character by an alliance with Jugurtha, the most infamous of mankind; and to relieve us, at the same time, from the disagreeable necessity of visiting with the same punishment your errors and his crimes. Besides, the Roman people, even from the very infancy of their state, have thought it better to seek friends than slaves, thinking it safer to rule over willing than forced subjects. But to you no friendship can be more suitable than ours; for, in the first place, we are at a distance from you, on which account there will be the less chance of misunderstanding between us, while our good feeling for you will be as strong as if we were near; and, secondly, because, though we have subjects in abundance, yet neither we, nor any other nation, can ever have a sufficiency of friends. Would that such had been your inclination from the first; for then you would assuredly, before this time, have received from the Roman people more benefits than you have now suffered evils. But since Fortune has the chief control in human affairs, and it has pleased her that you should experience our force as well as our favour, now, when she gives you this fair opportunity, embrace it without delay, and complete the course which you have begun. You have many and excellent means of atoning, with great ease, for past errors by future services. Impress this, however, deeply on your mind, that the Roman people are never outdone in acts of kindness; of their power in war you have already sufficient knowledge.”
To this address Bocchus made a temperate and courteous reply, offering a few observations, at the same time, in extenuation of his error; and saying “that he had taken arms, not with any hostile feeling, but to defend his own dominions, as part of Numidia, out of which he had forcibly driven Jugurtha, was his by right of conquest, and he could not allow it to be laid waste by Marius; that when he formerly sent ambassadors to the Romans, he was refused their friendship; but that he would say nothing more of the past, and would, if Marius gave him permission, send another embassy to the senate.” But no sooner was this permission granted, than the purpose of the barbarian was altered by some of his friends, whom Jugurtha, hearing of the mission of Sylla and Manlius, and fearful of what was intended by it, had corrupted with bribes.
Marius, in the mean time, having settled his army in winter quarters, set out, with the light-armed cohorts and part of the cavalry, into a desert part of the country, to besiege a fortress of Jugurtha’s, in which he had placed a garrison consisting wholly of Roman deserters. And now again Bocchus, either from reflecting on what he had suffered in the two engagements, or from being admonished by such of his friends as Jugurtha had not corrupted, selected, out of the whole number of his adherents, five persons of approved integrity and eminent abilities, whom he directed to go, in the first place, to Marius, and afterwards to proceed, if Marius gave his consent, as ambassadors to Rome, granting them full powers to treat concerning his affairs, and to conclude the war upon any terms whatsoever. These five immediately set out for the Roman winter quarters, but being beset and spoiled by Getulian robbers on the way, fled, in alarm and ill plight, to Sylla, whom the consul, when he went on his expedition, had left as pro-prætor with the army. Sylla received them, not, as they had deserved, like faithless enemies, but with the greatest ceremony and munificence; from which the barbarians concluded that what was said of Roman avarice was false, and that Sylla, from his generosity, must be their friend. For interested bounty, in those days, was still unknown to many; by whom every man who was liberal was also thought benevolent, and all presents were considered to proceed from kindness. They therefore disclosed to the quæstor their commission from Bocchus, and asked him to be their patron and adviser; extolling, at the same time, the power, integrity, and grandeur of their monarch, and adding whatever they thought likely to promote their objects, or to secure the favour of Sylla. Sylla promised them all that they requested; and, being instructed how to address Marius and the senate, they tarried in the camp about forty days.
When Marius, having failed in the object of his expedition, returned to Cirta, and was informed of the arrival of the ambassadors, he desired both them and Sylla to come to him, together with Lucius Bellienus, the prætor from Utica, and all that were of senatorial rank in any part of the country, with whom he discussed the instructions of Bocchus to his ambassadors; to whom permission to proceed to Rome was granted by the consul. In the mean time a truce was asked, a request to which assent was readily expressed by Sylla and the majority; the few, who advocated harsher measures, were men inexperienced in human affairs, which, unstable and fluctuating, are always verging to opposite extremes
The Moors having obtained all that they desired, three of them started for Rome with Cneius Octavius Rufus, who, as quæstor, had brought pay for the army to Africa; the other two returned to Bocchus, who heard from them, with great pleasure, their account both of other particulars, and especially of the courtesy and attention of Sylla.
To his three ambassadors that went to Rome, when, after a deprecatory acknowledgment that their king had been in error, and had been led astray by the treachery of Jugurtha, they solicited for him friendship and alliance, the following answer was given: “The senate and people of Rome are wont to be mindful of both services and injuries; they pardon Bocchus, since he repents of his fault, and will grant him their alliance and friendship when he shall have deserved them.”
When this reply was communicated to Bocchus, he requested Marius, by letter, to send Sylla to him, that, at his discretion, measures might be adopted for their common interest. Sylla was accordingly despatched, attended with a guard of cavalry, infantry, and Balearic slingers, besides some archers and a Pelignian cohort, who, for the sake of expedition, were furnished with light arms, which, however, protected them, as efficiently as any others, against the light darts of the enemy. As he was on the march, on the fifth day after he set out, Volux, the son of Bocchus, suddenly appeared on the open plain with a body of cavalry, which amounted in reality to not more than a thousand, but which, as they approached in confusion and disorder, presented to Sylla and the rest the appearance of a greater number, and excited apprehensions of hostility. Every one, therefore, prepared himself for action, trying and presenting his arms and weapons; some fear was felt among them, but greater hope, as they were now conquerors, and were only meeting those whom they had often overcome. After a while, however, a party of horse, sent forward to reconnoitre, reported, as was the case, that nothing but peace was intended.
Volux, coming forward, addressed himself to Sylla, saying that he was sent by Bocchus his father to meet and escort him. The two parties accordingly formed a junction, and prosecuted their journey, on that day and the following, without any alarm. But when they had pitched their camp, and evening had set in, Volux came running, with looks of perplexity, to Sylla, and said that he had learned from his scouts that Jugurtha was at hand, intreating and urging him, at the same time, to escape with him privately in the night. Sylla boldly replied, “that he had no fear of Jugurtha, an enemy so often defeated; that he had the utmost confidence in the valour of his troops; and that, even if certain destruction were at hand, he would rather keep his ground, than save, by deserting his followers, a life at best uncertain, and perhaps soon to be lost by disease.” Being pressed, however, by Volux, to set forward in the night, he approved of the suggestion, and immediately ordered his men to despatch their supper, to light as many fires as possible in the camp, and to set out in silence at the first watch.
When they were all fatigued with their march during the night, and Sylla was preparing, at sunrise, to pitch his camp, the Moorish cavalry announced that Jugurtha was encamped about two miles in advance. At this report, great dismay fell upon our men; for they believed themselves betrayed by Volux, and led into an ambuscade. Some exclaimed that they ought to take vengeance on him at once, and not to suffer such perfidy to remain unpunished.
But Sylla, though he had similar thoughts, protected the Moor from violence; exhorting his soldiers to keep up their spirits; and saying, “that a handful of brave men had often fought successfully against a multitude; that the less anxious they were to save their lives in battle, the greater would be their security; and that no man, who had arms in his hands, ought to trust for safety to his unarmed heels, or to turn to the enemy, in however great danger, the defenceless and blind parts of his body.” Having then called almighty Jupiter to witness the guilt and perfidy of Bocchus, he ordered Volux, as being an instrument of his father’s hostility, to quit the camp.
Volux, with tears in his eyes, intreated him to entertain no such suspicions; declaring “that nothing in the affair had been caused by treachery on his part, but all by the subtilty of Jugurtha, to whom his line of march had become known through his scouts. But as Jugurtha had no great force with him, and as his hopes and resources were dependent on his father Bocchus, he assuredly would not attempt any open violence, when the son of Bocchus would himself be a witness of it. He thought it best for Sylla, therefore, to march boldly through the middle of his camp, and that as for himself, he would either send forward his Moors, or leave them where they were, and accompany Sylla alone.” This course, under such circumstances, was adopted; they set forward without delay, and, as they came upon Jugurtha unexpectedly, while he was in doubt and hesitation how to act, they passed without molestation. In a few days afterwards, they arrived at the place to which their march was directed.
There was, at this time, in constant and familiar intercourse with Bocchus, a Numidian named Aspar, who had been sent to him by Jugurtha, when he heard of Sylla’s intended interview, in the character of ambassador, but secretly to be a spy on the Mauretanian king’s proceedings. There was also with him a certain Dabar, son of Massugrada, one of the family of Masinissa, but of inferior birth on the maternal side, as his father was the son of a concubine. Dabar, for his many intellectual endowments, was liked and esteemed by Bocchus, who, having found him faithful on many former occasions, sent him forthwith to Sylla, to say “that he was ready to do whatever the Romans desired; that Sylla himself should appoint the place, day, and hour, for a conference; that he kept all points, which he had settled with him before, inviolate; and that he was not to fear the presence of Jugurtha’s ambassador as any restraint on the discussion of their common interests, since, without admitting him, he could have no security against Jugurtha’s treachery.” I find, however, that it was rather from African duplicity than from the motives which he professed, that Bocchus thus allured both the Romans and Jugurtha with the hopes of peace; that he frequently debated with himself whether he should deliver Jugurtha to the Romans, or Sylla to Jugurtha; and that his inclinations swayed him against us, but his fears in our favour.
Sylla replied, “that he should speak on but few particulars before Aspar, and discuss others at a private meeting, or in the presence of only a few;” dictating, at the same time, what answer should be returned by Bocchus. Afterwards, when they met, as Bocchus had desired, Sylla stated, “that he had come, by order of the consul, to inquire whether he would resolve on peace or on war.” Bocchus, as he had been previously instructed by Sylla, requested him to come again at the end of ten days, since he had as yet formed no determination, but would at that time give a decisive answer. Both then retired to their respective camps. But when the night was far advanced, Sylla was secretly sent for by Bocchus. At their interview, none but confidential interpreters were admitted on either side, together with Dabar, the messenger between them, a man of honour, and held in esteem by both parties. The king at once commenced thus:
“I never expected that I, the greatest monarch in this part of the world, and the richest of all whom I know, should ever owe a favour to a private man. Indeed, Sylla, before I knew you, I gave assistance to many who solicited me, and to others without solicitation, and stood in need of no man’s assistance. But at this loss of independence, at which others are wont to repine, I am rather inclined to rejoice. It will be a pleasure to me to have once needed your friendship, than which I hold nothing dearer to my heart. Of the sincerity of this assertion you may at once make trial; take my arms, my soldiers, my money, or whatever you please, and use it as your own. But do not suppose, as long as you live, that your kindness to me has been fully requited; my sense of it will always remain undiminished, and you shall, with my knowledge, wish for nothing in vain. For, as I am of opinion, it is less dishonourable to a prince to be conquered in battle than to be surpassed in generosity.
“With respect to your republic, whose interests you are sent to guard, hear briefly what I have to say. I have neither made war upon the Roman people, nor desired that it should be made; I have merely defended my territories with arms against an armed force. But from hostilities, since such is your pleasure, I now desist. Prosecute the war with Jugurtha as you think proper. The river Mulucha, which was the boundary between Micipsa and me, I shall neither pass myself, nor suffer Jugurtha to come within it. And if you shall ask anything besides, worthy of me and of yourself, you shall not depart with a refusal.”
To this speech Sylla replied, as far as concerned himself, briefly and modestly; but spoke, with regard to the peace and their common concerns, much more at length. He signified to the king “that the senate and people of Rome, as they had the superiority in the field, would think themselves little obliged by what he promised; that he must do something which would seem more for their interest than his own; and that for this there was now a fair opportunity, since he had Jugurtha in his power, for, if he delivered him to the Romans, they would feel greatly indebted to him, and their friendship and alliance, as well as that part of Numidia which he claimed, would readily be granted him.” Bocchus at first refused to listen to the proposal, saying that affinity, the ties of blood, and a solemn league, connected him with Jugurtha; and that he feared, if he acted insincerely, he might alienate the affections of his subjects, by whom Jugurtha was beloved, and the Romans disliked. But at last, after being frequently importuned, his resolution gave way, and he engaged to do everything in accordance with Sylla’s wishes. They then concerted measures for conducting a pretended treaty of peace, of which Jugurtha, weary of war, was extremely desirous. Having settled their plans, they separated.
On the next day Bocchus sent for Aspar, Jugurtha’s envoy, and acquainted him that he had ascertained from Sylla, through Dabar, that the war might be concluded on certain conditions; and that he should therefore make inquiry as to the sentiments of the king. Aspar proceeded with joy to Jugurtha’s camp, and having received full instructions from him, returned in haste to Bocchus at the end of eight days, with intelligence “that Jugurtha was eager to do whatever might be required, but that he put little confidence in Marius, as treaties of peace, concluded with the Roman generals, had often before proved of no effect; that if Bocchus, however, wished to consult the interests of both, and to have an established peace, he should endeavour to bring all parties together to a conference, as if to settle the conditions, and then deliver Sylla into his hands, for when he had such a man in his power, a treaty would at once be concluded by order of the senate and people of Rome; as a man of high rank, who had fallen into the hands of the enemy, not from want of spirit, but from zeal for the public interest, would not be left in captivity.
The Moor, after long meditation on these suggestions, at length expressed his assent to them, but whether in pretence or sincerity I have not been able to discover. But the inclinations of kings, as they are violent, are often fickle, and at variance with themselves. At last, after a time and place were fixed for coming to a conference about the treaty, Bocchus addressed himself at one time to Sylla and at another to the envoy of Jugurtha, treating them with equal affability, and making the same professions to both. Both were in consequence equally delighted, and animated with the fairest expectations. But on the night preceding the day appointed for the conference, the Moor, after first assembling his friends, and then, on a change of mind, dismissing them, is reported to have had many anxious struggles with himself, disturbed alike in his thoughts and his gestures, which, even when he was silent, betrayed the secret agitation of his mind. At last, however, he ordered that Sylla should be sent for, and, according to his desire, laid an ambush for Jugurtha.
As soon as it was day, and intelligence was brought that Jugurtha was at hand, Bocchus, as if to meet him and do him honour, went forth, attended by a few friends, and our quæstor, as far as a little hill, which was full in the view of the men who were placed in ambush. To the same spot came Jugurtha with most of his adherents, unarmed, according to agreement; when immediately, on a signal being given, he was assailed on all sides by those who were lying in wait. The others were cut to pieces, and Jugurtha himself was delivered bound to Sylla, and by him conducted to Marius.
At this period war was carried on unsuccessfully by our generals Quintus Cæpio and Marcus Manlius, against the Gauls; with the terror of which all Italy was thrown into consternation. Both the Romans of that day, indeed, and their descendants, down to our own times, maintained the opinion that all other nations must yield to their valour, but that they contended with the Gauls, not for glory, but merely in self-defence. But after the war in Numidia was ended, and it was announced that Jugurtha was coming in chains to Rome, Marius, though absent from the city, was created consul, and Gaul decreed to him as his province. On the first of January he triumphed as consul, with great glory. At that time the hopes and dependence of the state were placed on him.
- I. Intellectual power] Virtute. See the remarks on virtus, at the commencement of the Conspiracy of Catiline. A little below, I have rendered via virtutis, “the path of true merit.”
- Worthy of honour] Clarus. “A person may be called clarus either on account of his great actions and merits; or on account of some honour which he has obtained, as the consuls were called clarissimi viri; or on account of great expectations which are formed from him. But since the worth of him who is clarus is known by all, it appears that the mind is here called clarus because its nature is such that pre-eminence is generally attributed to it, and the attention of all directed towards it.” Dietsch.
- Abandons itself] Pessum datus est. Is altogether sunk and overwhelmed.
- Impute their deficiency to circumstances, &c.] Suam quisque culpam auctores ad negotia transferunt. Men excuse their indolence and inactivity, by saying that the weakness of their faculties, or the circumstances in which they are placed, render them unable to accomplish anything of importance. But, says Seneca, Satis natura homini dedit roboris, si illo utamur;—nolle in causâ, non posse prætenditur. “Nature has given men sufficient powers, if they will but use them; but they pretend that they cannot, when the truth is that they will not.” “Negotia is a common word with Sallust, for which other writers would use res, facta.” Gerlach. “Cujus rei nos ipsi sumus auctores, ejus culpam rebus externis attribuimus.” Müller. “Auctores” is the same as the Greek ἄιτιοι.
- Useless] Aliena. Unsuitable, not to the purpose, not contributing to the improvement of life.
- Instead of being mortal] Pro mortalibus. There are two senses in which these words may be taken: as far as mortals can, and instead of being mortals. Kritz and Dietsch say that the latter is undoubtedly the true sense. Other commentators are either silent or say little to the purpose. As for the translators, they have studied only how to get over the passage delicately. The latter sense is perhaps favoured by what is said in c. 2, that “the illustrious achievement of the mind are, like the mind itself, immortal.”
- II. They all rise and fall, &c.] Omnia orta occidunt, et aucta senescunt. This is true of things in general, but is here spoken only of the qualities of the body, as De Brosses clearly perceived.
- Has power over all things] Habet cuncta. “All things are in its power.” Dietsch. “Sub ditione tenet. So Jupiter, Ov. Met. i., 197:
Quum mihi qui fulmen, qui vos habeoque rogoque.”
So Aristippus said, Habeo Laidem, non habeor à Laide, ἔχω ὀυκ ἔχομαι. Cic. Epist. ad Fam. ix., 26.
- III. Civil and military offices] Magistratus et imperia. “Illo vocabulo civilia, hoc militaria munera, significantur.” Dietsch.
- To rule our country or subjects, &c.] Nam vi quidem regere patriam aut parentes, &c. Cortius, Gerlach, Kritz, Dietsch, and Müller, are unanimous in understanding parentes as the participle of the verb pareo. That this is the sense, says Gerlach, is sufficiently proved by the conjunction aut; for if Sallust had meant parents, he would have used ut; and in this opinion Allen coincides. Doubtless, also, this sense of the word suits extremely well with the rest of the sentence, in which changes in government are mentioned. But Burnouf, with Crispinus, prefers to follow Aldus Manutius, who took the word in the other signification, supposing that Sallust borrowed the sentiment from Plato, who says in his Epistle ad Dionis Propinquos: Πατέρα δὲ ἢ μητέρα ὀυχ ὅσιον ἡγοῦμαι προσβιάζεσθαι, μὴ νόσῳ παραφροσύνης ἐχομένους. Βίαν δὲ πατρίδι πολιτέιας μεταβολῆς μὴ προσφέρειν, ὅταν ἄνευ φυγῶν, καὶ σφαγῆς ἀνδρῶν, μὴ δυνατὸν ᾖ γίνεσθαι τὴν ἀριστὴν. And he makes a similar observation in his Crito: Πανταχοῦ ποιητέον, ὃ ἃν κελεύοι ἡ πόλις τε, καὶ ἡ πατρὶς.—Βιάζεσθαι δὲ ὀυχ ὅσιον ὄυτε μητέρα, ὄυτε πατέρα· πολὺ δὲ τούτων ἔτι ἧττον τὴν πατρίδα. On which sentiments Cicero, ad Fam. i., 9, thus comments: Id enim jubet idem ille Plato, quem ego auctorem vehementer sequor; tantum contendere in republica quantum probare tuis civibus possis: vim neque parenti, neque patriæ afferre oportere. There is also another passage in Cicero, Cat. i., 3, which seems to favour this sense of the word: Si te parentes timerent atque odissent tui, neque eos ullâ ratione placare posses, ut opinor, ab eorum oculis aliquò concederes; nunc te patria, quæ communis est omnium nostrum parens odit ac metuit, &c. Of the first passage cited from Plato, indeed, Sallust’s words may seem to be almost a translation. Yet, as the majority of commentators have followed Cortius, I have also followed him. Sallust has the word in this sense in Jug., c. 102: Parentes abunde habemus. So Vell. Pat. ii., 108: Principatus constans ex voluntate parentium.
- Lead to] Portendant. “Portendere in a pregnant sense, meaning not merely to indicate, but quasi secum ferre, to carry along with them.” Kritzius.
- IV. Presumptuously] Per insolentiam. The same as insolenter, though some refer it, not to Sallust, but to quis existumet, in the sense of strangely, i.e. foolishly or ignorantly. I follow Cortius’s interpretation.
- At what periods I obtained office, what sort of men, &c.] Quibus ego temporibus magistratus adeptus sum, et quales viri, &c. “Sallust obtained the quæstorship a few years after the conspiracy of Catiline, about the time when the state was agitated by the disorders of Clodius and his party. He was tribune of the people, A.U.C. 701, the year in which Clodius was killed by Milo. He was prætor in 708, when Cæsar had made himself ruler. In the expression quales viri, &c., he alludes chiefly to Cato, who, when he stood for the prætorship, was unsuccessful.” Burnouf. Kritzius defends adeptus sum.
- What description of persons have subsequently entered the senate] “Cæsar chose the worthy and unworthy, as suited his own purposes, to be members of the senate.” Burnouf.
- Quintus Maximus] Quintus Fabius Maximus, of whom Ennius says,
Unus qui nobis cunctando restituit rem;
Non ponebat enim rumores ante salutem.
- Publius Scipio] Scipio Africanus the Elder, the conqueror of Hannibal. See c. 5.
- To the pursuit of honour] Ad virtutem. Virtus in the same sense as in virtutis viâ, c. 1.
- The wax] Ceram illam. The images or busts of their ancestors, which the nobility kept in the halls of their houses, were made of wax. See Plin. H. N. xxxv., 2.
- Men of humble birth] Homines novi. See Cat., c. 23.
- V. Threw everything, religious and civil, into confusion] Divina et humana cuncta permiscuit. “All things, both divine and human, were so changed, that their previous condition was entirely subverted.” Dietsch.
- Civil dissensions] Studiis civilibus. This is the sense in which most commentators take studia; and if this be right, the whole phrase must be understood as I have rendered it. So Cortius: “Ut non prius finirentur [studia civilia] nisi bello et vastitate Italiæ.” Sallust has studia partium, Jug. c. 42; and Gerlach quotes from Cic. pro Marcell. c. 10: “Non enim consiliis solis et studiis, sed armis etiam et castris dissidebamus.”
- More than any other enemy] Maximè.
- Since the Roman name became great] Post magnitudinem nominis Romani. “I know not why interpreters should find any difficulty in this passage. I understand it to signify simply since the Romans became so great as they were in the time of Hannibal; for, before that period, they had suffered even heavier calamities, especially from the Gauls.” Cortius.
- Syphax] “He was King of the Masæsyli in Numidia; was at first an enemy to the Carthaginians (Liv. xxiv., 48), and afterwards their friend (Liv. xxviii., 17). He then changed sides again, and made a treaty with Scipio; but having at length been offered the hand of Sophonisba, the daughter of Asdrubal, in marriage, he accepted it, and returned into alliance with the Carthaginians. Being subsequently taken prisoner by Masinissa and Lælius, the lieutenant of Scipio, (Liv. xxx., 2) he was carried into Italy, and died at Tibur (Liv. xxx., 45).” Burnouf.
- His reign] Imperii. Cortius thinks that the grant of the Romans ceased with the life of Masinissa, and that his son Micipsa reigned only over that part of Numidia which originally belonged to his father. But in this opinion succeeding commentators have generally supposed him to be mistaken.
- VII. During the Numantine war] Bello Numantino. Numantia, which stood near the source of the Durius or Douro in Spain, was so strong in its situation and fortifications, that it withstood the Romans for fourteen years. See Florus, ii., 17, 18; Vell. Pat. ii., 4.
- VIII. Rather by attention to them as a body, than by practising on individuals] Publicè quàm privatim. “Universæ potius civitatis, quàm privatorum gratiam quærendo.” Burnouf. The words can only be rendered periphrastically.
- IX. In a short time] Statim. If what is said in c. 11 be correct, that Jugurtha was adopted within three years of Micipsa’s death, his adoption did not take place till twelve years after the taking of Numantia, which surrendered in 619, and Micipsa died in 634. Statim is therefore used with great latitude, unless we suppose Sallust to mean that Micipsa signified to Jugurtha his intention to adopt him immediately on his return from Numantia, and that the formal ceremony of the adoption was delayed for some years.
- X. I received you—into my kingdom] In meum regnum accepi. By these words it is only signified that Micipsa received Jugurtha into his palace so as to bring him up with his own children. The critics who suppose that there is any allusion to the adoption, or a pretended intention of it on the part of Micipsa, are evidently in the wrong.
- Pre-eminent merit] Gloriâ. Our English word glory is too strong.
- By the fidelity which you owe to my kingdom] Per regni fidem. This seems to be the best of all the explanations that have been offered of these words. “Per fidem quam tu rex (futurus) mihi regi præstare debes.” Burnouf. “Per fidem quæ decet in regno, i.e. regem.” Dietsch. “Per eam fidem, quâ esse decet eum qui regnum obtinet.” Kritzius.
- It is not armies, or treasures, &c.] Ὀυ τόδε τὸ χρυσοῦν σκῆπτρον τὸ τὴν βασιλείαν διασῶζόν ἐστιν, ἀλλὰ πολλοὶ φίλοι σκῆπτρον βασιλεῦσιν ἀληθέστατον καὶ ἀσφαλέστατον. “It is not this golden sceptre that can preserve a kingdom; but numerous friends are to princes their truest and safest sceptre.” Xen. Cyrop. viii., 7, 14.
- And who can be a greater friend than one brother to another?] Quis autem amicior, quam frater fratri? “Νόμιζ’ ἀδελφοὺς τοὺς ἀληθινοὺς φίλους. Menander.” Wasse.
- That I have not adopted a better son, &c.] Ne ego meliores liberos sumsisse videar quàm genuisse. As there is no allusion to Micipsa’s adoption of any other son than Jugurtha, Sallust’s expression liberos sumsisse can hardly be defended. It is necessary to give son, in the singular, in the translation.
- XI. Had spoken insincerely] Ficta locutum. Jugurtha saw that Micipsa pretended more love for him than he really felt. Compare c. 6, 7.
- Which is regarded by the Numidians as the seat of honour] Quod apud Numidas honori ducitur. “I incline,” says Sir Henry Steuart, “to consider those manuscripts as the most correct, in which the word et is placed immediately before apud, Quod et apud Numidas honori ducitur.” Sir Henry might have learned, had he consulted the commentators, that “the word et is placed immediately before apud” in no manuscript; that Lipsius was the first who proposed its insertion; and that Crispinus, the only editor who has received it into his text, is ridiculed by Wasse for his folly. “Lipsius,” says Cortius, “cùm sciret apud Romanos etiam medium locum honorationem fuisse, corrigit: quod et apud Numidas honori ducitur. Sed quis talia ab historico exegerit? Si de Numidis narrat, non facilè aliquis intulerit, aliter propterea fuisse apud Romanos.”
- To the other seat] In alteram partem. We must suppose that the three seats were placed ready for the three princes; that Adherbal sat down first, in one of the outside seats; the one, namely, that would be on the right hand of a spectator facing them; and that Hiempsal immediately took the middle seat, on Adherbal’s right hand, so as to force Jugurtha to take the other outside one. Adherbal had then to remove Hiempsal in alteram partem, that is, to induce him to take the seat corresponding to his own, on the other side of the middle one.
- XII. Chief lictor] Proxumus lictor. “The proximus lictor was he who, when the lictors walked before the prince or magistrate in a regular line, one behind the other, was last, or next to the person on whom they attended.” Cortius. He would thus be ready to receive the great man’s commands, and be in immediate communication with him. We must suppose either that Sallust merely speaks in conformity with the practice of the Romans, or, what is more probable, that the Roman custom of being preceded by lictors had been adopted in Numidia.
- Hut of a maid-servant] Tugurio mulieris ancillæ. Rose renders tugurio “a mean apartment,” and other translators have given something similar, as if they thought that the servant must have had a room in the house. But she, and other Numidian servants, may have had huts apart from the dwelling-house. Tugurium undoubtedly signifies a hut in general.
- XIII. Into our province] In Provinciam. “The word province, in this place, signifies that part of Africa which, after the destruction of Carthage, fell to the Romans by the right of conquest, in opposition to the kingdom of Micipsa.” Wasse.
- Having thus accomplished his purposes] Patriatis consiliis. After consiliis, in all the manuscripts, occur the words postquam omnis Numidiæ potiebatur, which were struck out by Cortius, as being turpissima glossa. The recent editors, Gerlach, Kritz, Dietsch, and Burnouf, have restored them.
- His intimate friends] Hospitibus. Persons probably with whom he had been intimate at Numantia, or who had since visited him in Numidia.
- The senate—gave audience to both parties] Senatus utrisque datur. “The ambassadors of Jugurtha, and Adherbal in person, are admitted into the senate-house to plead their cause.” Burnouf.
- XIV. By deputation] Procuratione. He was to consider himself only the procurator, manager, or deputed governor, of the kingdom.
- Kindred—and relatives] Cognatorum—affinium. Cognatus is a blood relation; affinis is properly a relative by marriage.
- Hereditary] Ab stirpe.
- Next to this] Secundum ea. “Priscianus, lib. xiii, de præpositione agens, Secundum, inquit, quando pro κατὰ et μετὰ accipitur, loco præpositionis est. Sallustius in Jugurthino: secundum ea, uti debitis uterer.——Videlicet hoc dicit, Secundum in Sallustii exemplo, post vel proximè significare.” Rivius.
- As I had no power to form the character of Jugurtha] Neque mihi in manu fuit, qualis Jugurtha foret. “In manu fuit is simply in potestate fuit.—Ter. Hec. iv., 4, 44: Uxor quid faciat in manu non est meâ.” Cortius.
- Dishonoured, afflicted] Deformatus ærumnis.
- Above all others] Potissimùm.
- One of us has been murdered, and I, the other, have scarcely escaped the hand of lawlessness] Alter eorum necatus, alterius ipse ego manus impias vix effugi. This is the general reading, but it cannot be right. Adherbal speaks of himself and his brother as two persons, and of Jugurtha as a third, and says that of those two the one (alter) has been killed; he would then naturally proceed to speak of himself as the other; i.e. he would use the word alter concerning himself, not apply it to Jugurtha. Allen therefore proposes to read alter necatus, alter manus impias vix effugi. This mode of correction strikes out too much; but there is no doubt that the second alter should be in the nominative case.
- From being friendly, has become hostile to me] Ex necessariis advorsa facta sunt. “Si omnia mihi incolumnia manerent, neque quidquam rerum mearum (s. præsidiorum) amisissem, neque Jugurtha aliique mihi ex necessariis inimici facti essent.” Kritzius.
- But would that I could see him, &c.] Quod utinam illum—videam. The quod, in quod utinam, is the same as that in quod si, which we commonly translate but if. Quod, in such expressions, serves as a particle of connexion between what precedes and what follows it; the Latins being fond of connexion by means of relatives. See Zumpt’s Lat. Grammar on this point, Sect. 63, 82, Kenrick’s translation. Kritzius writes quodutinam, quodnisi, &c., as one word. Cortius injudiciously interprets quod in this passage as having facientem understood with it.
- Without disgrace] Sine dedecore. That is, if he did not succeed in getting revenge on Jugurtha.
- By your regard for yourselves, &c.] I have here departed from the text of Cortius, who reads per, vos, liberos atque parentes, i.e. vos (obsecro) per liberos, &c., as most critics would explain it, though Cortius himself prefers taking vos as the nominative case, and joining it with subvenite, which follows. Most other editions have per vos, per liberos, atque parentes vestros, to which I have adhered. Per vos, though an adjuration not used in modern times, is found in other passages of the Roman writers. Thus Liv. xxix., 18: Per vos, fidemque vestram. Cic. pro Planc., c. 42: Per vos, per fortunas vestras.
- To sink into ruin] Tabescere. “Paullatim interire.” Cortius. Lucret. ii., 1172: Omnia paullatim tabescere et ire ad capulum. “This speech,” says Gerlach, “though of less weighty argument than the other speeches of Sallust, is composed with great art. Neither the speaker nor his cause was adapted for the highest flights of eloquence; but Sallust has shrouded Adherbal’s weakness in excellent language. That there is a constant recurrence to the same topics, is no ground for blame; indeed, such recurrence could hardly be avoided, for it is natural to all speeches in which the orator earnestly labours to make his hearers adopt his own feelings and views. The Romans were again and again to be supplicated, and again and again to be reminded of the character and services of Masinissa, that they might be induced, if not by the love of justice, yet by the dread of censure, to relieve the distresses of his grandson. . . . He omits no argument or representation that could move the pity of the Romans; and if his abject prostration of mind appears more suitable to a woman than a man, it is to be remembered that it is purposely introduced by Sallust to exhibit the weakness of his character.”
- Æmilius Scaurus] He was princeps senatûs (see c. 25), and seems to be pretty faithfully characterised by Sallust as a man of eminent abilities, but too avaricious to be strictly honest. Cicero, who alludes to him in many passages with commendation (Off. i., 22, 30; Brut. 29; Pro Muræn. 7; Pro Fonteio, 7), mentions an anecdote respecting him (De Orat. ii., 70), which shows that he had a general character for covetousness. See Pliny, H. N. xxxvi., 15. Valerius Maximus (iii., 7, 8) tells another anecdote of him, which shows that he must have been held in much esteem, for whatever qualities, by the public. Being accused before the people of having taken a bribe from Mithridates, he made a few remarks on his own general conduct: “Varius of Sucro says that Marcus Scaurus, being bribed with the king’s money, has betrayed the interests of the Roman people. Marcus Scaurus denies that he is guilty of what is laid to his charge. Which of the two words do you believe?” The people dismissed the accusation; but the words of Scaurus may be regarded as those of a man rather seeking to convey a notion of his innocence, than capable of proving it. The circumstance which Cicero relates is this. Scaurus had incurred some obloquy for having, as it was said, taken possession of the property of a certain rich man, named Phyrgio Pompeius, without being entitled to it by any will; and being engaged as advocate in some cause, Memmius, who was pleading on the opposite side, seeing a funeral pass by at the time, said, “Scaurus, yonder is a dead man, on his way to the grave; if you can but get possession of his property!” I mention these matters because it has been thought that Sallust, from some ill-feeling, represents Scaurus as more avaricious than he really was.
- His ruling passion] Consuetâ libidine. Namely, avarice.
- XVI. Lucius Opimius] His contention with the party of C. Gracchus may be seen in any history of Rome. For receiving bribes from Jugurtha he was publicly accused, and, being condemned, ended his life, which was protracted to old age, in exile and neglect. Cic. Brut. 33; Planc. 28.
- XVII. Only two divisions, Asia and Europe] Thus Varro, de L. L. iv., 13, ed. Bip. “As all nature is divided into heaven and earth, so the heaven is divided into regions, and the earth into Asia and Europe.” See Broukh. ad Tibull. iv., 1, 176.
- A vast sloping tract—Catabathmos] Declivem latitudinem, quem locum Catabathmon incolæ appellant. Catabathmus—vallis repente convexa, Plin. H. N. v., 5. Catabathmus, vallis devexa in Ægyptum, Pomp. Mela, i., 8. I have translated declivem latitudinem in conformity with these passages. Catabathmus, a Greek word, means a descent. There were two, the major and minor; Sallust speaks of the major.
- Most of them die by the gradual decay of age] Plerosque senectus dissolvit. “A happy expression; since the effect of old age on the bodily frame is not to break it into pieces suddenly, but to dissolve it, as it were, gradually and imperceptibly.” Burnouf.
- King Hiempsal] “This is not the prince that was murdered by Jugurtha, but the king who succeeded him; he was grandson of Masinissa, son of Gulussa, and father of Juba. After Juba was killed at Thapsus, Cæsar reduced Numidia to the condition of a province, and appointed Sallust over it, who had thus opportunities of gaining a knowledge of the country, and of consulting the books written in the language of it.” Burnouf.
- XVIII. Getulians and Libyans] Gætuli et Libyes. “See Pompon. Mel. i., 4; Plin. H. N. v., 4, 6, 8, v., 2, xxi., 13; Herod. iv., 159, 168.” Gerlach. The name Gætuli, is, however, unknown to Herodotus. They lay to the south of Numidia and Mauretania. See Strabo xvii., 3. Libyes is a term applied by the Greek writers properly to the Africans of the North coast, but frequently to the inhabitants of Africa in general.
- His army, which was composed of various nations] This seems to have been an amplification of the adventure of Hercules with Geryon, who was a king in Spain. But all stories that make Hercules a leader of armies appear to be equally fabulous.
- Medes, Persians, and Armenians] De Brosses thinks that these were not real Medes, &c., but that the names were derived from certain companions of Hercules. The point is not worth discussion.
- Our sea] The Mediterranean. See above, c. 17.
- More towards the ocean] Intra oceanum magis. “Intra oceanunm is differently explained by different commentators. Cortius, Müller, and Gerlach, understand the parts bounded by the ocean, lying close upon it, and stretching toward the west; while Langius thinks that the regions more remote from the Atlantic Ocean, and extending towards the east, are meant. But Langius did not consider that those who had inverted keels of vessels for cottages, could not have strayed far from the ocean, but must have settled in parts bordering upon it. And this is what is signified by intra oceanum. For intra aliquam rem is not always used to denote what is actually in a thing, and circumscribed by its boundaries, but what approaches towards it and reaches close to it.” Kritzius. He then instances intra modum, intra legem; Hortensii scripta intra famam sunt, Quintil. xi., 3, 8. But the best example which he produces is Liv. xxv., 11: Fossa ingens ducta, et vallum intra eam erigitur. Cicero, in Verr., iii., 89, has also, he notices, the same expression, Locus intra oceanum jam nullus est,—quò non nostrorum hominum libido iniquitasque pervaserit, i.e. locus oceano conterminus. Burnouf absurdly follows Langius.
- Numidians] Numidas. The same as Nomades, or wanderers; a term applied to pastoral nations, and which, as Kritzius observes, the Africans must have had from the Greeks, perhaps those of Sicily.
- More to the sun] Sub sole magis. I have borrowed this expression from Rose. The Getulians were more southward.
- These soon built towns] That is, the united Medes, Armenians, and Libyans.
- Medes—into Moors] Mauros pro Medis. A most improbable, not to say impossible, corruption.
- Of the Persians] Persarum. That is, of the Persians and Getulians united.
- The two parties] Utrique. The older Numidians, and the younger, who had emigrated towards Carthage.
- Those who had spread towards our sea—for the Libyans are less warlike than the Getulians] Magis hi, qui ad nostrum mare processerant; quia Libyes quàm Gætuli minùs bellicosi. The Persians and Getulians (under the name of Numidians), and their colonists, who were more towards the Mediterranean, and were more warlike than the Libyans (who were united with the Medes and Armenians), took from them portions of their territories by conquest. This is clearly the sense, as deducible from the preceding portion of the text.
- Lower Africa] Africæ pars inferior. The part nearest to the sea. The ancients called the maritime parts of a country the lower parts, and the inland parts the higher, taking the notion, probably, from the course of the rivers. Lower Egypt was the part at the mouth of the Nile.
- XIX. Hippo] “It is not Hippo Regius” (now called Bona) “that is meant, but another Hippo, otherwise called Diarrhytum or Zarytum, situate in Zengitana, not far from Utica. This is shown by the order in which the places are named, as has already been observed by Cortius.” Kritzius.
- There were two cities of this name. Leptis Major, now Lebida, lay between the two Syrtes; Leptis Minor, now Lempta, between the smaller Syrtis and Carthage. It is the latter that is meant here, and in c. 77, 78.
- Next to the Catabathmos] Ad Catabathmon. Ad means, on the side of the country towards the Catabathmos. “Catabathmon initium ponens Sallustius ab eo discedit.” Kritzius.
- Along the sea-coast] Secundo mari. “Si quis secundum mare pergat.” Wasse.
- Of Theræans] Theræôn. From the island of Thera, one of the Sporades, in the Ægean Sea, now called Santorin. Battus was the leader of the colony. See Herod. iv., 145; Strab. xvii., 3; Pind. Pyth. iv.
- Two Syrtes] See c. 78.
- Leptis] That is, Leptis Major. See above on this c.
- Altars of the Philæni] See c. 79.
- To the south of Numidia] Super Numidiam. “Ultra Numidiam, meridiem versus.” Burnouf.
- Had lately possessed] Novissimè habuerant. In the interval between the second and third Punic wars.
- XXI. Both armies took up, &c.] I have omitted the word interim at the beginning of this sentence, as it would be worse than useless in the translation. It signifies, during the interval before the armies came to an engagement; but this is sufficiently expressed at the termination of the sentence.
- Cirta] Afterwards named Sittianorum Colonia, from P. Sittius Nucerinus (mentioned in Cat., c. 21), who assisted Cæsar in the African war, and was rewarded by him with the possession of this city and its lands. It is now called Constantina, from Constantine the Great, who enlarged and restored it when it had fallen into decay. Strabo describes it, xvii., 3.
- Twilight was beginning to appear] Obscuro etiam tum lumine. Before day had fairly dawned.
- Romans] Togatorum. Romans, with, perhaps, some of the allies, engaged in merchandise or other peaceful occupations, and therefore wearing the toga. They are called Italici in c. 26.
- Three young men] Tres adolescentes. Cortius includes these words in brackets, regarding them as the insertion of some sciolist. But a sciolist, as Burnouf observes, would hardly have thought of inserting tres adolescentes. The words occur in all the MSS., and are pretty well confirmed by what is said below, c. 25, that when the senate next sent a deputation, they took care to make it consist of majores natu, nobiles. See on adolescentes, Cat., c. 38.
- XXII. Told much less than the truth] Sed is rumor clemens erat. “It fell below the truth, not telling the whole of the atrocity that had been committed.” Gruter. “Priscian (xviii., 26) interprets clemens ‘non nimius,’ alluding to this passage of Sallust.” Kritzius. All the later commentators have adopted this interpretation, except Burnouf, who adopts the supposition of Ciacconius, that a vague and uncertain rumour is meant.
- Right of nations] Jure gentium. “That is, the right of avenging himself.” Rupertus.
- XXIV. Pays no regard] Neque—in animo habeat. This letter of Adherbal’s, both in matter and tone, is very similar to his speech in c. 14.
- I have experienced, even before] Jam antea expertus sum. He means, in the result of his speech to the senate.
- XXV. Chief of the senate] Princeps senatûs. “He whose name was first entered in the censors’ books was called Princeps Senatûs, which title used to be given to the person who of those alive had been censor first (qui primus censor, ex iis qui viverent, fuisset), but, after the year 544, to him whom the censors thought most worthy, Liv. xxvii., 13. This dignity, although it conferred no command or emolument, was esteemed the very highest, and was usually retained for life, Liv. xxxiv., 44; xxxix., 52. It is called Principatus; and hence afterwards the Emperor was named Princeps, which word properly denotes rank, and not power.” Adam’s Rom. Antiq., p. 3.
- At length the evil incitements of ambition prevailed] Vicit tamen in avido ingenio pravum consilium. “Evil propensities gained the ascendancy in his ambitious disposition.”
- XXVI. The Italians] Italici. See c. 21.
- XXVII. By the Sempronian law] Lege Semproniâ. This was the Lex Sempronia de Provinciis. In the early ages of the republic, the provinces were decreed by the senate to the consuls after they were elected; but by this law, passed A.U.C. 631, the senate fixed on two provinces for the future consuls before their election (Cic. Pro Dom., 9; De Prov. Cons., 2), which they, after entering on their office, divided between themselves by lot or agreement. The law was passed by Caius Gracchus. See Adam’s Rom. Antiq., p. 105.
- Publius Scipio Nasica] “The great-grandson of him who was pronounced by the senate to be vir optimus; and son of him who, though holding no office at the time, took part in putting to death Tiberius Gracchus. He was consul with Bestia, A.U.C. 643, and died in his consulship. Cic. Brut., 34.” Burnouf.
- Lucius Bestia Calpurnius] “He had been on the side of the nobility against the Gracchi, and was therefore in favour with the senate. After his consulship he was accused and condemned by the Mamilian law (c. 40), for having received money from Jugurtha, Cic. Brut. c. 34. De Brosses thinks that he was the grandfather of that Bestia who was engaged in the conspiracy of Catiline.” Burnouf.
- XXIX. For the sake of giving confidence] Fidei causâ. “In order that Jugurtha might have confidence in Bestia, Sextus the quæstor was sent as a sort of hostage into one of Jugurtha’s towns.” Cortius.
- As if by an evident majority of voices] Quasi per saturam exquisitis sententiis. “The opinions being taken in a confused manner,” or, as we say, in the lump. The sense manifestly is, that there was (or was said to be) such a preponderating majority in Jugurtha’s favour, that it was not necessary to ask the opinion of each individual in order. Satura, which some think to be always an adjective, with lanx understood, though lanx, according to Scheller, is never found joined with it in ancient authors, was a plate filled with various kinds of fruit, such as was annually offered to the gods. “Lanx plena diversis frugibus in templum Cereris infertur, quæ satura nomine appellatur,” Acron. ad Hor. Sat. i., 1, init. “Lanx, referta variis multisque primitiis, sacris Cereris inferebatur,” Diomed. iii., p. 488. “Satura, cibi genus ex variis rebus conditum,” Festus sub voce. See Casaubon. de Rom. Satirâ, ii., 4; Kritzius ad h. l., and Scheller’s Lex. v., Satur. In the Pref. to Justinian’s Pandects, that work is called opus sparsim et quasi per saturam collectum, utile cum inutilibus mixtim.
- To preside at the election of magistrates] Ad magistratibus rogandos. The presiding magistrate had to ask the consent of the people, saying Velitis, jubeatis,—rogo, Quirites.
- XXX. To give in full] Perscribere. “To write at length.” The reader might suppose, at first, that Sallust transcribed this speech from some publication; but in that case, as Burnouf observes, he would rather have said exscribere. Besides, the following hujuscemodi shows that Sallust did not profess to give the exact words of Memmius. And the speech is throughout marked with Sallustian phraseology. “The commencement of it, there is little doubt, is imitated from Cato, of whose speech de Lusitanis the following fragment is extant in Aul. Gell. xiii., 24: Multa me dehortata sunt huc prodire, anni, ætas, vox, vires, senectus.” Kritzius.
- XXXI. During the last fifteen years] His annis quindecim. “It was at this time, A.U.C. 641, twenty-two years since the death of Tiberius Gracchus, and ten since that of Caius; Sallust, or Memmius, not to appear to make too nice a computation, takes a mean.” Burnouf. The manuscripts, however, vary; some read fifteen, and others twelve. Cortius conjectured twenty, as a rounder number, which Kritzius and Dietsch have inserted into their texts. Twenty is also found in the Editio Victoriana, Florence, 1576.
- Your defenders have perished] Perierint vestri defensores. Tiberius and Caius Gracchus, and their adherents.
- Liberty of speech] Libertatem. Liberty of speech is evidently intended.
- Every civil and religious obligation] Divina et humana omnia. “They offended against the laws, when they took bribes from an enemy; against the honour of Rome, when they did what was unworthy of it, and greatly to its injury; and against gods and men, against all divine and human obligations, when they granted to a wicked prince not only impunity, but even rewards, for his crimes.” Dietsch.
- Slaves purchased with money, &c.] Servi, ære parati, &c. This is taken from another speech of Cato, of which a portion is preserved in Aul. Gell. x., 3: Servi injurias nimis ægre ferunt; quid illos bono genere natos, magnâ virtute præditos, animi habuisse atque habituros, dum vivent? “Slaves are apt to be too impatient of injuriees; and what feelings do you think that men of good family, and of great merit, must have had, and will have as long as they live?”
- Public spirit] Pietas. Under this word are included all duties that we ought to perform to those with whom we are intimately connected, or on whom we are dependent, as our parents, our country, and the gods. I have borrowed my translation of the word from Rose.
- The marks of favour which proceed from you] Beneficia vestra. Offices of state, civil and military.
- A greater disgrace to lose, &c.] Quòd majus dedecus est parta amittere quàm omnino non paravisse. Ἀίσχιον δὲ ἔχοντας ἀφαιρεθῆναι ἢ κτὼμενους ἀτυχῆσαι. Thucyd. ii., 62.
- These times please you less than those, &c.] Illa quàm hæc tempora magis placent, &c. “Those times, which immediately succeeded the deaths of the Gracchi, and which were distinguished for the tyranny of the nobles, and the humilitation of the people; these times, in which the people have begun to rouse their spirit and exert their liberty.” Burnouf.
- Embezzlement of the public money] Peculatus ærarii. “Peculator, qui furtum facit pecuniæ publicæ.” Ascon. Pedian. in Cic. Verr. i.
- Kings] I have substituted the plural for the singular. “No name was more hated at Rome than that of a king; and no sentiment, accordingly, could have been better adapted to inflame the minds of Memmius’s hearers, than that which he here utters.” Dietsch.
- If the crimes of the wicked are suppressed, &c.] Si injuriæ non sint, haud sæpe auxilii egeas. “Some foolishly interpret auxilium as signifying auxilium tribunicium, the aid of the tribunes; but it is evident to me that Sallust means aid against the injuries of bad men, i.e. revenge or punishment.” Kritzius. “If injuries are repressed, or prevented, there will be less need for the help of good men, and it will be of less consequence if they become inactive.” Dietsch.
- XXXII. Lucius Cassius] This is the man from whom came the common saying cui bono? “Lucius Cassius, whom the Roman people thought the most accurate and wisest of judges, was accustomed constantly to inquire, in the progress of a cause, cui bono fuisset, of what advantage anything had been.” Cic. pro Rosc. Am. 30. “His tribunal,” says Valerius Maximus (iii., 7), “was called, from his excessive severity, the rock of the accused.” It was probably on account of this quality in his character that he was now sent into Numidia.
- Under guarantee of the public faith] Interpositâ fide publicâ. See Cat. 47, 48. So a little below, fidem suam interponit. Interpono is “to pledge.”
- XXXIII. In the garb, as much as possible, of a suppliant] Cultu quàm maximè miserabili. “In such a garb as accused persons, or suppliants, were accustomed to adopt, when they wished to excite compassion, putting on a mean dress, and allowing their hair and beard to grow.” Burnouf.
- XXXIV. Enjoined the prince to hold his peace] A single tribune might, by such intervention, offer an effectual opposition to almost any proceeding. On the great power of the tribunes, see Adam’s Rom. Ant., under the head “Tribunes of the People.”
- Every other act to which anger prompts] Aliis omnibus, quæ ira fieri amat. “These words have given rise to wonderful hallucinations; for Quintilian, ix., 3, 17, having observed that many expressions of Sallust are borrowed from the Greek, as Vulgus amat fieri, all interpreters, from Cortius downwards, have thought that the structure of Sallust’s words must be Greek, and have taken ira, in this passage, for an ablative, and quæ for a nominative plural. Gerlach has even gone so far as to take liberties with the words cites by Quintilian, and to correct them, please the gods, into quæ in vulgus amat fieri. But how could there have been such want of penetration in learned critics, such deficiency in the knowledge of the two languages, that, when the imitation of the Greek, noticed by Quintilian, has reference merely to the word φιλεῖ, amat, they should think of extending it to the dependence of a singular verb on a neuter plural? With truth, indeed, though with much simplicity, does Gerlach observe, that you will in vain seek for instances of this mode of expression in other writers.” Kritzius. Dietsch agrees with Kritzius; and there will, I hope, be no further doubt that that quæ is the accusative and ira the nominative; the sense being, “which anger loves or desires to be done.” Another mode of explanation has been suggested; namely, to understand multitudo as the nominative case to amat, making ira the ablative; but this method is far more cumbersome, and less in accordance with the style of Sallust. The words quoted by Quintilian do not refer, as Cortius erroneously supposes, to this passage, but to some part of Sallust’s works that is now lost.
- XXXV. Should be disturbed] Movere is the reading of Cortius; moveri that of most other editors, in conformity with most of the MSS. and early editions.
- The times at which he resorted to particular places] Loca atque tempora cuncta. “All his places and times.” There can be no doubt that the sense is what I have given in the text.
- In accordance with the law of nations, &c.] As the public faith had been pledged to Jugurtha for his security, his retinue was on the same footing as that of ambassadors, the persons of whose attendants are considered as inviolable as their own, as long as they commit no offence against the laws of the country in which they are resident. If any such offence is committed by an attendant of an ambassador, an application is usually made by the government to the ambassador to deliver him up for trial. Bomilcar seems to have been apprehended without any application having been made to Jugurtha; as, in our own country, the Portuguese ambassador’s brother, who was one of his retinue, was apprehended and executed for a murder, by Oliver Cromwell. See, on this point, Grotius De Jure Bell. et Pac. xviii., 8; Vattel, iv., 9; Burlamaqui on Politic Law, part iv., ch. 15. Jugurtha, says Vattel, should have given up Bomilcar; but such was not Jugurtha’s object.
- At the commencement of the proceedings] In priori actione. That is, when Bomilcar was apprehended and charged with the murder.
- His other subjects would be deterred from obeying him] Reliquos popularis metus invaderet parendi sibi. “Fear of obeying him should take possession of his other subjects.”
- That it was a venal city, &c.] Urbem venalem, &c. I consider, with Cortius, that this is the proper way of taking these words. Some would render them O venal city, &c., because Livy, Epit. lxiv., has O urbem venalem, but this seems to require that the verb should be in the second person; and it is probable that in Livy we should either eject the O or read inveneris. Florus, iii., 1, gives the words in the same way as Sallust.
- XXXVI. As proprætor] Pro prætore. With the power of lieutenant-general.
- XXXVII. Throughout the year] Totius anni. That is, all that remained of the year.
- On the edge of a steep hill] In prærupti montis extremo. “In extremo a scholiast rightly interprets in margine.” Gerlach. Cortius, whom Langius follows, considers that in extremo means at the bottom; a notion which Kritzius justly condemns; for, as Gerlach asks, what would that have to do with the strength of the place? Müller would have us believe that in extremo means at the top; but if Sallust had meant to say that the city was at the top, he would hardly have chosen the word extremus for the purpose. Doubtless, as Gerlach observes, the city was on the top of the hill, which was broad enough to hold it; but the words in extremo signify that the walls were even with the side of the hill. Of the site of the town of Suthul no traces are now to be found.
- Vineæ] Defences made of hurdles or other wood, and often covered with raw hides, to defend the soldiers who worked the battering-ram. The word that comes nearest to vineæ in our language is mantelets. Before this word, in many editions, occurs the phrase ob thesauros oppidi potiundi, which Cortius, whom I follow, omits.
- XXXVIII. That their defection might be less observed] Ita delicta occultiora fore. Cortius transferred these words to this place from the end of the preceding sentence; Kritzius and Dietsch have restored them to their former place. Gerlach thinks them an intruded gloss.
- The chief centurion] Centurio primi pili. There were sixty centurions in a Roman legion; the one here was the first, or oldest, centurion of the Triarii, or Pilani.
- As death was the only alternative] Quia mortis metu mutabant. Neither manuscripts nor critics are agreed about this passage. Cortius, from a suggestion of Palmerius, adopted mutabant; most other editors have mutabantur; but both are to be taken in the same sense; for mutabant is equivalent to mutabant se. Cortius’s interpretation appears the most eligible: “Permutabantur cum metuendâ morte,” i.e. there were those conditions on one side, and death on the other, and if they did not accept the condition, they must die. Kritzius fancifully and strangely interprets, propter mortis metum se mutabant, i.e. alia videbantur atque erant, or the acceptance of the terms appeared excusable to the soldiers, because they were threatened with death if they did not accept them. It is worth while to notice the variety of readings exhibited in the manuscripts collated by Cortius: ten exhibit mutabantur; three, minitabantur; three, multabantur; three, tenebantur; one, tenebatur; one, cogebantur; one, cogebatur; one, angustiabantur; one, urgebantur; and one, mortis metuebant pericula. There is also, he adds, in some copies, nutabant, which the Bipont editors and Müller absurdly adopted.
- XXXIX. Under all the circumstances of the case] Ex copiâ rerum. From the number of things which he had to consider.
- XL. The Latins and Italian allies] Per homines nominis Latini, et socios Italicos. “The right of voting was not extended to all the Latin people till A.U.C. 664, and the Italian allies did not obtain it till some years afterwards.” Kritzius. So that at this period, which was twenty years earlier, their influence could only be employed in an underhand way. Compare c. 42.
- Marcus Scaurus] See c. 15. That he was appointed on this occasion, is an evident proof of his commanding influence.
- But the investigation, notwithstanding, was conducted, &c.] Sed quæstio exercita, &c. Scaurus, it is probable, did what he could to mitigate the violence of the proceedings. Cicero, however, says that Caius Galba a sacerdos, with four consulares, Bestia, Caius Cato, Albinus, and Opimius, was condemned and exiled by this law of Mamilius. See Brut. c. 34.
- XLI. Took, snatched, and seized] Ducere, trahere, rapere. “Ducere conveys the notion of cunning and fraud; trahere of some degree of force; rapere of open violence.” Müller. The words chiefly refer to office in the state, as is apparent from what follows.
- The parents and children of the soldiers, &c.]
Quid quod usque proximos
Revellis agri terminos, et ultra
Salis avarus? Pellitur paternos
In sinu ferens deos
Et uxor et vir, sordidosque natos.
Hor. Od., ii., 18.
What can this impious av’rice stay?
Their sacred landmarks torn away,
You plunge into your neighbour’s grounds,
And overleap your client’s bounds.
Helpless the wife and husband flee,
And in their arms, expell’d by thee,
Their household gods, adored in vain,
Their infants, too, a sordid train.
- Among the nobility] Ex nobilitate. Cortius injudiciously omits these words. The reference is to the Gracchi.
- By means of the allies and Latins] See on, c. 40.
- But to a reasonable man it is more agreeable to submit, &c.] Sed bono vinci satius est, quàm malo more injuriam vincere. Bono, sc. viro. “That is, if the nobility had been truly worthy characters, they would rather have yielded to the Gracchi, than have revenged any wrong that they had received from them, in an unprincipled manner.” Dietsch. Thus this is a reflexion on the nobles; in which notion of the passage Allen concurs with Dietsch. Others, as Cortius, think it a reflection on the too great violence of the Gracchi. The brevity with which Sallust had expressed himself makes it difficult to decide. Kritzius, who thinks that the remark is in praise of the Gracchi, supplies the ellipse thus: “Sane concedi debet Gracchis non satis moderatum animum fuisse; quæ res ipsis adeo interitum attulit; sed sic quoque egregii viri putandi sunt; nam bono vinci,” &c. Langius and Burnouf join bono with more, but do not differ much in their interpretations of the passage from that given by Dietsch.
- XLIII. Of a character uniformly irreproachable] Famâ tamen æquabili et inviolatâ. Æqualibus is uniform, always the same, keeping an even tenor.
- Regarded all other things as common to himself and his colleague] Alia omnia sibi cum collegâ ratus. “Other matters, unconnected with the war against Jugurtha, he thought that he would have to manage in conjunction with his colleague, and that, consequently, he might give but partial attention to them; but that the war in Numidia was committed to his sole care.” Cortius. Ohter interpretations of these words have been suggested; but they are fanciful, and unworthy of notice.
- Princes] Reges. Who these were, the commentators have not attempted to conjecture.
- XLIV. By Spurius Albinus, the proconsul] A Spurio Albino proconsule. This is the general reading. Cortius has, Spurii Albini pro consule, with which we may understand agentis or imperantis, but can hardly believe it to be what Sallust wrote. Kritzius reads, Spurii Albini proconsulis.
- In a stationary camp] Stativis castris. In contradistinction to that which the soldiers formed at the end of a day’s march.
- But neither had the camp been fortified, &c.] Sed neque muniebantur ea (sc. castra), neque more militari vigiliæ deducebantur. “The words sed neque muniebantur ea are wanting in almost all the manuscripts, as well as in all the editions, except that of Cyprianus Popma.” Kritzius. Gerlach, however, had, previously to Kritz, inserted them in his text, though in brackets; for he supposed them to be a mere conjecture of some scribe, who was not satisfied with a single neque. But they have been found in a codex of Fronto, by Angelo Mai, and have accordingly been received as genuine by Kritz and Dietsch. Pottier and Burnouf have omitted the ea, thinking, I suppose, that in such a position it could hardly be Sallust’s; but the verb requires a nominative case to prevent it from being referred to the following vigiliæ.
- Foreign wine] Vino advectitio. Imported. Africa does not abound in wine.
- XLV. With regard to other things] Cœteris. Cortius, whom Gerlach follows, considers this word as referring to the men or officers; but Kritzius and Dietsch, with better judgment, understand rebus.
- Numerous sentinels] Vigilias crebras. At short intervals, says Kritzius, from each other.
- LXVI. Villages] Mapalibus. See c. xviii. The word is here used for a collection of huts, a village.
- XLVII. Here the consul, to try the disposition of the inhabitants, and, should they allow him, to take advantage of the situation of the place, &c.] Huc consul, simul tentandi gratiâ, et si paterentur, opportunitatis loci, præsidium imponit. This is a locus vexatissimus, about which no editor has satisfied himself. I have deserted Cortius and followed Dietsch, who seems to have settled the passage, on the basis of Havercamp’s text, with more judgment than any other commentator. Cortius read, Huc consul, simul tentandi gratiâ, si paterent opportunitates loci, &c. taking opportunitates in the sense of munitiones, “defences;” but would Sallust have said that Metellus put a garrison in the place, to try if its defences would be open to him? Havercamp’s reading is, simul tentandi gratiâ, et si paterentur opportunitates loci, &c. Palmerius conjectured simul tentandi gratiâ, si paterentur; et opportunitate loci, which Gerlach and Kritzius adopt, except that they change the place of the et, and put it before si. Allen thinks that he had amended the passage by reading Huc consul, simul si paterentur tentandi, et opportunitatis loci, gratiâ; but this conjecture is liable to similar objection with that of Cortius. Other varieties of reading it is needless to notice. But it is observable that four manuscripts, as Kritzius remarks, have propter opportunitates, which led me long ago to suppose that the true reading must be simul tentandi gratiâ, simul propter opportunitates loci. Simul propter might easily have been corrupted into si paterentur.
- Frequent arrival of supplies] Commeatum. “Frumenti et omnium rerum, quarum in bello usus est, largam copiam.” Kritzius. I follow the text of Cortius, (retaining the words juvaturum exercitum) which Kritzius sufficiently justifies. There is a variety of readings, but all much the same in sense.
- Extraordinary earnestness] Impensius modo. Cortius and Kritzius interpret this modo as the ablative case of modus; i.e. quàm modus erat, or supra modum; but Dietsch and Burnouf question the propriety of this interpretation, and consider the modo to be the same as that in tantummodo, dummodo, &c. The same expression occurs again in c. 75.
- XLVIII. Running parallel with the stream] Tractu pari. It may be well to illustrate this and the following chapter by a copy of the lines which Cortius has drawn, “to excite,” as he says, “the imagination of his readers:”
- XLIX. In a transverse direction] Transverso itinere. It lay on the flank of the Romans as they marched towards the river, in dextero latere, c. 49, fin.
- Well acquainted with the country] Prudentes. “Periti loci et regionis.” Cortius. Or it may mean knowing what they were to do, while the enemy would be imperiti, surprised and perplexed.
- Would crown] Confirmaturum. Would establish, settle, put the last hand to them.
- Was seen] Conspicitur. This is the reading adopted by Cortius, Müller, and Allen, as being that of all the manuscripts. Havercamp, Kritzius, and Dietsch admitted into their texts, on the sole authority of Donatus ad Ter. Eun. ii., 3, conspicatur, i.e. (Metellus) catches sight of the enemy. The latter reading, perhaps, makes a better connexion.
- Rendering it uncertain] Incerti. Presenting such an appearance that a spectator could not be certain what they were.
- He drew up those in the right wing—in three lines] In dextero latere—triplicibus subsidiis aciem instruxit. In the other passages in which Sallust has the word subsidia (Cat., c. 59), he uses it for the lines behind the front. Thus he says of Catiline, Octo cohortes in fronte constituit; reliqua signa in subsidiis arctiùs collocat; and of Petreius, Cohortes veteranas—in fronte; post eas reliquum exercitum in subsidiis locat. But whether he uses the word in the same sense here; whether we might, as Cortius thinks (whom Gerlach and Dietsch follow), call the division of Metellus’s troops quadruple instead of triple, or whether he arranged them, as De Brosses and others suppose, in the usual disposition of Hastati, Principes, and Triarii, who shall place beyond dispute? The probability, however, if Sallust is consistent with himself in his use of the word, lies with Cortius. Gerlach refers to Cæsar, De Bell. Civ. iii., 89: Celeriter ex tertiâ acie singulas cohortes detraxit, atque ex his quartam instituit; but this does not illustrate Sallust’s use of the word subsidia: Cæsar forms a fourth acies; Metellus draws up one acies “triplicibus subsidiis.”
- With the front changed into a flank] Transversis principiis. He made the whole army wheel to the left, so that what was their front line, or principia, as they faced the enemy on the hill, became their flank as they marched from the mountains toward the river.
- L. Behind the front line] Post principia. The principia are the same as those mentioned in the preceding note, that is, the front line when the army faced that of Jugurtha on the hill, but which presented its flank to the enemy when the army was on its march. So that Marius commanded in the centre (“in medio agmine,” says Dietsch), while Metellus took the lead with the cavalry of the left wing. See the following note.
- Cavalry on the left wing—which, on the march, had become the van] Sinistræ alæ equitibus,—qui in agmine principes facti erant. When Metellus halted (c. 49, fin.), and drew up his troops fronting the hill on which Jugurtha was posted, he placed all his cavalry in the wings; consequently, when the army wheeled to the left, and marched forward, the cavalry of the left wing became the van.
- LI. Of the whole struggle] Totius negotii. That is, on the side of the Romans.
- LII. The enemy’s ignorance of the country] Regio hostibus ignara. Ignara for ignota; a country unknown to the enemy.
- LIII. Fatigued and exhausted] Fessi lassique. I am once more obliged to desert Cortius, who reads lætique. The sense, as Kritzius and Dietsch observe, shows that læti cannot be the reading, for there must evidently be a complete antithesis between the two parts of the sentence; an antithesis which would be destroyed by the introduction of læti. Gerlach, though he retains læti in his text, condemns it in his notes.
- LIV. Which could only be conducted, &c.] Quod, nisi ex illius lubidine, geri non posset. Cortius omits the non before posset, but almost every other editor, except Allen, has retained it, from a conviction of its necessity.
- Under these circumstances, however] Ex copiâ tamen. With copiâ we must understand consiliorum or rerum, as at the end of c. 39. All the manuscripts, except two, have inopiâ, which editors have justly rejected as inconsistent with the sense.
- LV. A thanksgiving] Supplicia. The same as supplicatio, on which the reader may consult Adam’s Rom. Ant., or Dr. Smith’s Dictionary.
- LVI. Dared not be guilty of treachery] Fallere nequibant. “Through dread of the severest punishments if they should fall into the hands of the Romans. Valerius Maximus, ii., 7, speaks of deserters having been deprived of their hands by Quintus Fabius Maximus; of others who were crucified or beheaded by the elder Africanus; of others who were thrown to wild beasts by Africanus the younger; and of others who were sentenced by Paulus Æmilius to be trampled to death by elephants. Hence it appears that the punishment of deserters was left to the pleasure of the general.” Burnouf.
- Sicca] It stood on the banks of the Bagradas, at some distance from the coast, and contained a celebrated Temple of Venus. Val. Max. ii., 6. D’Anville thinks it the same as the modern Kef.
- LVII. Javelins] Pila. This pilum may have been, as Müller suggests, similar to the falarica which Livy (xxi., 8) says that the Saguntines used against their besiegers. Falarica erat Saguntinis, missile telum hastili abiegno,—id, sicut in pilo, quadratum stuppâ circumligabant, linebantque pice:—quod cum medium accensum mitteretur, &c. Of Sallust’s other words, in the latter part of this sentence, the sense is clear, but the readings of different editors are extremely various. Cortius and Gerlach have sudes, pila, præterea picem sulphure et tædâ mixtam ardentia mittere; but it can scarcely be believed that Sallust wrote picem—tædâ mixtam. Havercamp gives pice et sulphure tædam mixtam ardentia mittere, which has been adopted by Kritzius and Dietsch, except that they have charged ardentia, on the authority of some of the manuscripts, into ardenti.
- LIX. And thus, with the aid of the light-armed foot, almost succeeded in giving the enemy a defeat] Ita expeditis peditibus suis hostes pæ victos dare. Cortius, Kritzius, and Allen, concur in regarding expeditis peditibus as an ablative of the instrument, i.e. as equivalent to per expeditos pedites, and victos dare as nothing more than vincere. This appears to be the right mode of explanation; but most of the translators, French as well as English, have taken expeditis peditibus as a dative, and given to the passage the sense that “the cavalry delivered up the enemy, when nearly conquered, to be despatched by the light-armed foot.”
- LX. Attacks, or preparations for defence, were made in all quarters] Oppugnare aut parare omnibus locis. There is much discussion among the critics whether these verbs are to be referred to the besiegers of the besieged. Cortius and Gerlach attribute oppugnare to the Romans, and parare to the men of Zama; a distinction which Kritzius justly condemns. There can be little doubt that they are spoken of both parties equally.
- LXI. The rest of his forces—in that part of our province nearest to Numidia] Cœterum exercitum in provinciam, quæ proxima est Numidiæ, hiemandi gratiâ collocat. “The words quæ proxima est Numidiæ Cortius would eject as superfluous and spurious. But it is to be understood that Metellus did not distribute his troops through the whole of the province, but in that part which is nearest to Numidia, in order that they might be easily assembled in case of an attack of the enemy or any other emergency. There is, therefore, no need to read with the Bipont edition and Müller, quà proxima, &c., though this is in itself not a bad conjecture.” Kritzius.
- LXII. Was summoned to appear in person at Tisidium, &c.] Cùm ipse ad imperandum Tisidium vocaretur. The gerund is used, as the grammarians say, in a passive sense. “The town of Tisidium is nowhere else mentioned. Strabo (xvii., 3, p. 488, Ed. Tauch.) speaks of a place named Τισιαιοὶ, which was utterly destroyed, and not a vestige of it left.” Gerlach.
- LXIII. Sacrificing to the gods] Per hostias dîs supplicante. Supplicating or worshipping the gods with sacrifices, and trying to learn their intentions as to the future by inspection of the entrails. “Marius was either a sincere believer in the absurd superstitions and dreams of the soothsayers, or pretended to be so, from a knowledge of the nature of mankind, who are eager to listen to wonders, and are more willing to be deceived than to be taught.” Burnouf. See Plutarch, Life of Marius. He could interpret omens for himself, according to Valerius Maximus, i., 5.
- The people—disposed of, &c.] Etiam tum alios magistratus plebes, consulatum nobilitas, inter se per manus tradebat. The commentators have seen the necessity of understanding a verb with plebes. Kritzius suggests habebat; Gerlach gerebat or accipiebat.
- LXIV. As soon as the public business would allow him] Ubi primùm potuisset per negotia publica. As soon as he could through (regard to) the public business.
- With his own son] Cum filio suo. With the son of Metellus. He tells Marius than it would be soon enough for him to stand for the consulship in twenty-three years’ time, the legitimate age for the consulship being forty-three.
- In the camp with his father] Contubernio patris. He was among the young noblemen in the consul’s retinue, who were sent out to see military service under him. This was customary. See Cic. Pro Cœl. 30; Pro Planc. 11.
- LXV. Which was as weak as his body] Ob morbos—parum valido. Sallust had already expressed this a few lines above.
- Merchants] Negotiatores. “Every one knows that Romans of equestrian dignity were accustomed to trade in the provinces.” Burnouf.
- With the most honourable demonstrations in his favour] Honestissimâ suffragatione. “Suffragatio was the zealous recommendation of those who solicited the votes of their fellow-citizens in favour of some candidate. See Festus, s. v. Suffragatores, p. 266, Lindem.” Dietsch. It was honourable, in the case of Marius, as it was without bribery, and seemed to have the good of the republic in view.
- The Mamilian law] See c. 40.
- LXVI. Advantageous positions] Suos locos. Places favourable for his views. See Kritzius on c. 54.
- LXVIII. Were in trepidation. At the citadel, &c.] I have translated this passage in conformity with the texts of Gerlach, Kritzius, Dietsch, Müller, and Allen, who put a point between trepidare and ad arcem. Cortius, Havercamp, and Burnouf have trepidare ad arcem, without any point. Which method gives the better sense, any reader can judge.
- On the roofs of the houses] Pro tectis ædificorum. In front of the roofs of the houses; that is, at the parapets. “In primâ tectorum parte.” Kritzius. The roofs were flat.
- Worthless and infamous character] Improbus intestabilisque. These words are taken from the twelve tables of the Roman law: See Aul. Gell. vi., 7; xv., 3. Horace, in allusion to them, has intestabilis et sacer, Sat. ii., 3, 181. Intestabilis signified a person to be of so infamous a character that he was not allowed to give evidence in a court of justice.
- LXVIII. Averse to further exertion] Tum abnuentes omnia. Most of the translators have understood by these words that the troops refused to obey orders; but Sallust’s meaning is only that they expressed, by looks and gestures, their unwillingness to proceed.
- LXIX. As a native of Latium] Nam is civis ex Latio erat. “As he was a Latin, he was not protected by the Porcian law (see Cat., c. 51), though how far this law had power in the camp, is not agreed.” Allen. Gerlach thinks that it had the same power in the camp as elsewhere, with reference to Roman citizens. But Roman citizenship was not extended to the Latins till the end of the Social War, A.U.C. 662. Plutarch, however, in his Life of Caius Gracchus (c. 9), speaks of Livius Drusus having been abetted by the patricians in proposing a law for exempting the Latin soldiers from being flogged, about thirty years earlier; and it seems to have been passed, but, from this passage of Sallust, appears not to have remained in force. Lipsius touches on this obscure point in his Militia Romana, v. 18, but settles nothing. Plutarch, in his Life of Marius, c. 8., says that Turpilius was an old retainer of the family of Metellus, whom he attended, as præfectus fabrûm, or master of the artificers; that, being afterwards appointed governor of Vacca, he exercised his offices with great justice and humility; that his life was spared by Jugurtha at the solicitation of the inhabitants; that, when he was brought to trial, Metellus thought him innocent, and that he would not have been condemned but for the malice of Marius, who exasperated the other members of the council against him. He adds, that after his death, his innocence became apparent, and that Marius boasted of having planted in the breast of Metellus an avenging fury, that would not fail to torment him for having put to death the innocent friend of his family. Hence Sir Henry Steuart has accused Sallust of wilfully misrepresenting the character of Turpilius, as well as the whole transaction. But as much credit is surely due to Sallust as to Plutarch.
- LXX. To which Jugurtha—was unable to attend] Quæ Jugurthæ, fesso, aut majoribus astricto, superaverant. “Which had remained to (or been too much for) Jugurtha, when weary, or engaged in more important affairs.”
- Among the winter quarters of the Romans] Inter hiberna Romanorum. It is stated in c. 61, as Kritzius observes, that Metellus, when he put his army into winter quarters, had, at the same time, placed garrisons in such of Jugurtha’s towns as had revolted to him. The forces of the Romans being thus dispersed, Nabdalsa might justly be said to have his army inter hiberna, “among their winter quarters.”
- LXXI. Behind his head] Super caput. On the back of the bolster that supported his head; part of which might be higher than the head itself.
- LXXIII. The factious tribunes] Seditiosi magistratus.
- After the lapse of many years] Post multas tempestates. Apparently the period since A.U.C. 611, when Quintus Pompeius, who, as Cicero says (in Verr. ii., 5), was humili atque obscuro loco natus, obtained the consulship; that is, a term of forty-three or forty-four years.
- That decree was thus rendered abortive] Ea res frustra fuit. By a lex Sempronia, a law of Caius Gracchus, it was enacted that the senate should fix the provinces for the future consuls before the comitia for electing them were held. But from Jug. c. 26, it appears that the consuls might settle by lot, or by agreement between themselves, which of those two provinces each of them should take. How far the senate were allowed or accustomed, in general, to interfere in the arrangement, it is not easy to discover; but on this occasion they had taken upon themselves to pass a resolution in favour of the patrician. Lest similar scenes, however, to those of the Sempronian times should be enacted, they yielded the point to the people.
- LXXV. Thala] The river on which this town stood is not named by Sallust, but it appears to have been the Bagrada. It seems to have been nearly destroyed by the Romans, after the defeat of Juba, in the time of Julius Cæsar; though Tacitus, iii., 21, mentions it as having afforded a refuge to the Romans in the insurrection of the Numidian chief, Tacfarinas. D’Anville, and Dr. Shaw, Travels in Bombay, vol. i., pt. 2, ch. 5, think it the same with Telepte, now Ferre-anah; but this is very doubtful. See Cellar. iv., 5. It was in ruins in the time of Strabo.
- Had done more than was required of them] Officia intenderant. “Auxit intenditque sævitiam exacerbatus indicio filii sui Drusi.” Suet. Tib. 62.
- LXXVI. Nor did he ever—continue, &c.] Neque postea—moratus, simulabat, &c. Most editors take moratus for morans: Allen places a colon after it, as if it were for moratus est.
- And erected towers upon it to protect, &c.] Et super aggerem impositis turribus opus et administros tutari. “And protected the work and the workmen with towers placed on the mound.” Impositis turribus is not the ablative absolute, but the ablative of the instrument.
- LXXVII. Leptis] Leptis Major, now Lebida. In c. 19, Leptis Minor is meant.
- Their own safety] Suam salutem: i.e. the safety of the people of Leptis.
- LXXVIII. Which take their name from their nature] Quibus nomen ex re inditum. From σύρειν, to draw, because the stones and sand were drawn to and fro by the force of the wind and tide. But it has been suggested that this etymology is probably false; it is less likely that their name should be from the Greek than from the Arabic, in which sert signifies a desert tract or region, a term still applied to the desert country bordering on the Syrtes. See Ritter, Allgem. vergleich. Geog. vol. i., p. 929. The words which, in Havercamp, close this description of the Syrtes, “Syrtes ab tractu nominatæ,” and which Gruter and Putschius suspected not to be Sallust’s, Cortius omitted; and his example has been followed by Müller and Burnouf; Gerlach, Kritzius, and Dietsch, have retained them. Gerlach, however, thinks them a gloss, though they are found in every manuscript but one.
- Almost at the extremity of Africa] Prope in extremâ Africâ. “By extremâ Africâ Gerlach rightly understands the eastern part of Africa, bordering on Egypt, and at a great distance from Numidia.” Kritzius.
- The language alone] Lingua modò.
- From the king’s dominions] Ab imperio regis. “Understand Masinissa’s, Micipsa’s, or Jugurtha’s.” Burnouf.
- LXXIX. Philæni] The account of these Carthaginian brothers with a Greek name, φίλαινοι, praise-loving, is probably a fable. Cortius thinks that the inhabitants, observing two mounds rising above the surrounding level, fancied they must have been raised, not by nature, but by human labour, and invented a story to account for their existence. “The altars,” according to Mr. Rennell (Geog. of Herod., p. 640), “were situated about seven-ninths of the way from Carthage to Cyrene; and the deception,” he adds, “would have been too gross, had it been pretended that the Carthaginian party had travelled seven parts in nine, while the Cyrenians had travelled no more than two such parts of the way.” Pliny (H. N. v. 4) says that the altars were made of sand; Strabo (lib. iii.) says that in his time they had vanquished. Pomponius Mela and Valerius Maximus repeat the story, but without adding anything to render it more probable.
- Devoid of vegetation] Nuda gignentium. So c. 93, cuncta gignentium natura. Kritzius justly observes that gignentia is not to be taken in the sense of genita, as Cortius and others interpret, but in its own active sense; the ground was bare of all that was productive, or of whatever generates anything. This interpretation is suggested by Perizonius ad Sanctu Minerv. i., 15.
- Sacrificed themselves] Seque vitamque—condonavere. “Nihil aliud est quàm vitam suam, sc. ἓν διὰ δυοῖν.” Allen.
- LXXX. Sell—honourable or dishonourable] Omnia honesta atque inhonesta vendere. See Cat. c. 30. They had been bribed by Jugurtha to use their influence against Bocchus.
- A daughter of Bocchus, too, was married to Jugurtha] Jugurthæ filia Bocchi nupserat. Several manuscripts and old editions have Boccho, making Bocchus the son-in-law of Jugurtha. But Plutarch (Vit. Mar. c. 10, Sull. c. 3) and Florus (iii., 1) agree in speaking of him as Jugurtha’s father-in-law. Bocchus was doubtless an older man than Jugurtha, having a grown up son, Volux, c. 105. Castilioneus and Cortius, therefore, saw the necessity of reading Bocchi, and other editors have followed them, except Gerlach, “who,” says Kritzius, “has given Bocchi in his larger, and Boccho in his smaller and more recent edition, in order that readers using both may have an opportunity of making a choice.”
- No one of them becomes a companion to him] Nulla pro sociâ obtinet. The use of obtinet absolutely, or with the word dependent on it understood, prevails chiefly among the later Latin writers. Livy, however, has fama obtinuit, xxi., 46. “The tiro is to be reminded,” says Dietsch, “that obtinet is not the same as habetur, but is always for locum obtinet.
- LXXXI. The two kings, with their armies] The text has only exercitus.
- To lessen Bocchus’s chance of peace] Bocchi pacem imminuere. He wished to engage Bocchus in some act of hostility against the Romans, so as to render any coalition between them impossible.
- LXXXII. Should have learned something of the Moors] Cognitis Mauris, i.e., after knowing something of the Moors, and not before. Cognitis militibus is used in the same way in c. 39; and Dietsch says that amicitia Jugurthæ parum cognita is for nondum cognita, c. 14.
- LXXXIV. Discharged veterans] Homines emeritis stipendiis. Soldiers who had completed their term of service.
- Means of warfare] Usum belli. That is ea quæ belli usus posceret, troops and supplies.
- Cherished the fancy] Animis trahebant. “Trahere animo is always to revolve in the mind, not to let the thought of a thing escape from the mind.” Kritzius.
- LXXXV. Its interests ought to be maintained, &c.] Majore curâ illam administrari quàm hæc peti debere. Cortius injudiciously omits the word illam. No one has followed him but Allen.
- Hostile] Occursantis. Thwarting, opposing.
- That you may not be deceived in me] Ut neque vos capiamini. “This verb is undoubtedly used in this passage for decipere. Compare Tibull. Eleg. iii., 6, 45: Nec vos aut capiant pendentia brachia collo, Aut fallat blandâ sordida lingua prece. Cic. Acad. iv., 20: Sapientis vim maximam esse cavere, ne capiatur.” Gerlach.
- To secure their election] Per ambitionem. Ambire is to canvass for votes; to court the favour of the people.
- Of yonder crowd of nobles] Ex illo globo nobilitatis. Illo, δεικτικῶς.
- I know some—who after they have been elected, &c.] “At whom Marius directs this observation, it is impossible to tell. Gerlach, referring to Cic. Quæst. Acad. ii. 1, 2, thinks that Lucullus is meant. But if he supposes that Lucullus was present to the mind of Marius when he spoke, he is egregiously deceived, for Marius was forty years antecedent to Lucullus. It is possible, however, that Sallust, thinking of Lucullus when he wrote Marius’s speech, may have fallen into an anachronism, and have attributed to Marius, whose character he had assumed, an observation which must justly have been made in his own day.” Kritzius.
- Persons who invert the order of things] Homines præposteri. Men who do that last which should be done first.
- For though to discharge the duties of the office, &c.] Nam gerere, quàm fieri, tempore posterius, re atque usu prius est. With gerere is to be understood consulatum; with fieri, consulem. This is imitated from Demosthenes, Olynth. iii.: Τὸ γὰρ πράττειν το͂υ λέγειν καὶ χειροτονεῖν, ὓστερον ὂν τῇ τάξει, πρότερον τῃ δυνάμει καὶ κρεῖττόν ἐστι. “Acting is posterior in order to speaking and voting, but prior and superior in effect.”
- With those haughty nobles] Cum illorum superbiâ. Virtus Scipiadæ et mitis sapientia Lælî.
- My condition] Mihi fortuna. “That is, my lot, or condition, in which I was born, and which I had no hand in producing.” Dietsch.
- The circumstance of birth, &c.] Naturam unam et communem omnium existumo. “Nascendi sortem” is the explanation which Dietsch gives to naturam. One man is born as well as another, but the difference between men is made by their different modes of action; a difference which the nobles falsely suppose to proceed from fortune. “Voltaire, Mahomet, Act. I. sc. iv., has expressed the sentiment of Sallust exactly:
Les mortels sont égaux, ce n’est point la naissance,
C’est la seule vertu qui fait leur différence.” Burnouf.
- And could it be inquired of the fathers, &c.] Ac, si jam ex patribus Albini aut Bestiae quæri posset, &c. Patres, in this passage, is not, as Anthon imagines, the same as majores; as is apparent from the word gigni. The fathers of Albinus and Bestia were probably dead at the time that Marius spoke. The passage which Anthon quotes from Plutarch to illustrate patres, is not applicable, for the word there is πρόγονοι: Ἐπυνθάνετο τῶν παρόντων, ἐι μὴ καὶ τοὺς ἐκείνων ὄιονται προγόνους ἀυτῷ μᾶλλον ἀν ἔυξασθαι παραπλησίους ἐκγόνους ἀπολιπεῖν, ἅτε δὴ μήδ’ ἀυτοὺς δι’ ἐυγένειαν, ἀλλ’ ἀπ’ ἀρετῆς καὶ καλῶν ἔργων ἐνδόξους γενομένους. Vit. Mar. c. 9. “He would then ask the people whether they did not think that the ancestors of those men would have wished rather to leave a posterity like him, since they themselves had not risen to glory by their high birth, but by their virtue and heroic achievements?” Langhorne.
- Abstinence] Innocentiæ. Abstinence from all vicious indulgence.
- Honourable exertion] Virtutis. See notes on Cat. c. 1, and Jug. c. 1.
- They occupy the greatest part of their orations in extolling their ancestors] Plerâque oratione majores suos extollunt. “They extol their ancestors in the greatest part of their speech.”
- The glory of their ancestors sheds a light on their posterity] Juvenal, viii., 138:
Incipit ipsorum contra te stare parentum
Nobilitas, claramque facem præferre pudendis.
Thy fathers’ virtues, clear and bright, display
Thy shameful deeds, as with the light of day.
- I feel assured] Ex animi sententiâ. “It was a common form of strong asseveration.” Gerlach.
- Spears] Hastas. “A hasta pura, that is a spear without iron, was anciently the reward of a soldier the first time that he conquered in battle, Serv. ad Virg. Æn. vi., 760; it was afterwards given to one who had struck down an enemy in a sally or skirmish, Lips. ad Polyb. de Milit. Rom. v., 17.” Burnouf.
- A banner] Vexillum. “Standards were also military rewards. Vopiscus relates that ten hastæ puræ, and four standards of two colours, were presented to Aurelian. Suetonius (Aug. 25) says that Agrippa was presented by Augustus, after his naval victory, with a standard of the colour of the sea. These standards therefore, were not, as Badius Ascensius thinks, always taken from the enemy; though this was sometimes the case, as appears from Sil. Ital. xv., 261:
Tunc hasta viris, tunc martia cuique
Vexilla, ut meritum, et prædae libamina, dantur.” Burnouf.
- Caparisons] Phaleras. “Sil. Ital. xv., 255:
Phaleris hic pectora fulget:
Hic torque aurato circumdat bellica colla.
Juvenal, xv., 60:
Ut læti phaleris omnes et torquibus omnes.
These passages show that phaleræ, a name for the ornaments of horses, were also decorations of men; but they differed from the torques, or collars, in this respect, that the phaleræ hung down over the breast, and the torques only encircled the neck. See Lips. ad Polyb. de Milit. Rom. v., 17.” Burnouf.
- Valour] Virtutem. “The Greeks, those illustrious instructors of the world, had not been able to preserve their liberty; their learning therefore had not added to their valour. Virtus, in this passage, is evidently fortitudo bellica, which, in the opinion of Marius, was the only virtue.” Burnouf. See Plutarch, Vit. Mar. c. 2.
- To be vigilant at my post] Præsidia agitare. Or “to keep guard at my post.” “Præsidia agitare signifies nothing more than to protect a party of foragers or the baggage, or to keep guard round a besieged city.” Cortius.
- Keep no actor] Histrionem nullum—habeo. “Luxuriæ peregrin origo ab exercitu Asiatico (Manlii sc. Vulsonis, A.U.C. 568) invecta in urbem est. * * * Tum psaltriæ sambucistriæque, et convivalia ludionum oblectamenta, addita epulis.” Liv. xxxix., 6. “By this army returning from Asia was the origin of foreign luxury imported into the city. * * * At entertainments—were introduced players on the harp and timbrel, with buffoons for the diversion of the guests.” Baker. Professor Anthon, who quotes this passage, says that histrio “here denotes a buffoon kept for the amusement of the company.” But such is not the meaning of the word histrio. It signifies one who in some way acted, either by dancing and gesticulation, or by reciting, perhaps to the music of the sambucistriæ or other minstrels. See Smith’s Dict. of Gr. and Rom. Ant. Art. Histrio, sect. 2. Scheller’s Lex. sub vv. Histrio, Ludio, and Salto. The emperors had whole companies of actors, histriones aulici, for their private amusement. Suetonius says of Augustus (c. 74) that at feasts he introduced acroamata et histriones. See also Spartian. Had. c. 19; Jul. Capitol. Verus, c. 8.
- My cook] Coquum. Livy, in the passage just cited from him, adds tum coquus vilissimum antiquis mancipium, et æstimatione et usu in pretio esse; et quod ministerium fuerat, ars habei cœpta. “The cook, whom the ancients considered as the meanest of their slaves both in estimation and use, became highly valuable.” Baker.
- Avarice, inexperience, and arrogance] Avaritiam, imperitiam, superbiam. “The President De Brosses and Dotteville have observed, that Marius, in these words, makes an allusion to the characters of all the generals that had preceded him, noticing at once the avarice of Calpurnius, the inexperience of Albinus, and the pride of Metellus.” Le Brun.
- For no man, by slothful timidity, has escaped the lot of mortals] Etenim ignaviâ nemo immortalis factus. The English translators have rendered this phrase as if they supposed the sense to be, “No man has gained immortal renown by inaction.” But this is not the signification. What Marius means, is, that no man, however cautiously and timidly he may avoid danger, has prolonged his life to immortality. Taken in this sense, the words have their proper connexion with what immediately follows: neque quisquam parens liberis, uti æterni forent, optavit. The sentiment is the same as in the verse of Horace: Mors et fugacem persequitur virum: or in these lines of Tyrtæus:
Ὀυ γάρ κως θάνατόν γε φυγεῖν ἐιμαρμένον ἐστὶν
Ἄνδρ’, ὀυδ’ ἢν προγόνων ᾖ γένος ἀθανάτων·
Πολλάκι δηϊότητα φυγῶν καὶ δοῦπον ἀκόντων
Ἔρχεται, ἐν δ’ ὄικῳ μοῖρα κίχεν θανάτου.
To none, ’mong men, escape from death is giv’n,
Though sprung from deathless habitants of heav’n:
Him that has fled the battle’s threatening sound,
The silent foot of fate at home has found.
The French translator, Le Brun, has given the right sense: “Jamais la lâcheté n’a préservé de la mort;” and Durean Delamalle: “Pour être un lâche, on n’en serait pas plus immortel.” Ignavia is properly inaction; but here signifies a timid shrinking from danger.
- Nor has any parent wished for his children, &c.] Ὀυ γὰρ ἀθανάτους σφίσι παῖδας ἐύχονται γενέσθαι, ἀλλ’ ἀγαθοὺς καὶ ἐυκλεεῖς. “Men do not pray that they may have children that will never die, but such as will be good and honourable.” Plato, Menex. 20. “This speech, differing from the other speeches of Sallust both in words and thoughts, conveys a clear notion of that fierce and objurgatory eloquence which was natural to the rude manners and bold character of Marius. It is a speech which cannot be called polished and modulated, but must rather be termed rough and ungraceful. The phraseology is of an antique cast, and some of the words coarse. * * * But it is animated and fervid, rushing on like a torrent; and by language of such a character and structure, the nature and manners of Marius are excellently represented.” Gerlach.
- LXXXVI. Not after the ancient method, or from the classes] Non more majorum, neque ex classibus. By the regulation of Servius Tullius, who divided the Roman people into six classes, the highest class consisting of the wealthiest, and the others descending downwards in regular gradation, none of the sixth class, who were not considered as having any fortune, but were capite censi, “rated by the head,” were allowed to enlist in the army. The enlistment of the lower order, commenced, it is said, by Marius, tended to debase the army, and to render it a fitter tool for the purposes of unprincipled commanders. See Aul. Gell. xvi., 10.
- Desire to pay court] Per ambitionem.
- LXXXVII. Having filled up his legions, &c.] Their numbers had been thinned in actions with the enemy, and Metellus perhaps took home some part of the army which did not return to it.
- Their country and parents, &c.] Patriam parentesque, &c. Sallust means to say that the soldiers would see such to be the general effect and result of vigorous warfare; not that they had any country or parents to protect in Numidia. But the observation has very much of the rhetorician in it.
- LXXXVIII. From our allies] Ex sociis nostris. The people of the province.
- Obliged the king himself—to take flight without his arms] Ipsumque regem—armis exuerat. He attacked Jugurtha so suddenly and vigorously that he was compelled to flee, leaving his arms behind him.
- LXXXIX. The Libyan Hercules] Hercules Libys. “He is one of the forty and more whom Varro mentions, and who, it is probable, were leaders of trading expeditions or colonies. See supra, c. 18. A Libyan Hercules is mentioned by Solinus, xxvii.” Burnouf.
- Marius conceived a strong desire] Marium maxima cupido invaserat. “A strong desire had seized Marius.”
- Wild beasts’ flesh] Ferinâ carne. Almost all our translators have rendered this “venîson.” But the Africans lived on the flesh of whatever beasts they took in the chase.
- XC. The consul, &c.] Here is a long and awkward parenthesis. I have adhered to the construction of the original. The “yet,” tamen, that follows the parenthesis, refers to the matter included in it.
- He consigned to the care, &c.] Equitibus auxiliariis agendum attribuit. “He gave to be driven by the auxiliary cavalry.”
- The town of Lares] Oppidum Laris. Cortins seems to have been right in pronouncing Laris to be an accusative plural. Gerlach observes that Lares occurs in the Itinerary of Antoninus and in St. Augustine, Adv. Donatist. vi., 28.
- XCI. After marching the whole night] He seems to have marched in the night for the sake of coolness.
- XCII. All his undertakings, &c.] Omnia non bene consulta in virtutem trahebantur. “All that he did rashly was attributed to his consciousness of extraordinary power.” If they could not praise his prudence, they praised his resolution and energy.
- Difficult of execution] Difficilem. There seemed to be as many impediments to success as in the affair at Capsa, though the undertaking was not of so perilous a nature.
- In the midst of a plain] Inter cœteram planitiem. By cœteram he signifies that the rest of the ground, except the part on which the fort stood, was plain and level.
- Directed his utmost efforts to take] Summâ vi capere intendit. It is to be observed that summâ vi refers to intendit, not to capere. Summâ ope animum intendit ut caperet.
- Among the vineæ] Inter vineas. “Inter, for which Müller, from a conjecture of Glareanus, substituted intra, is supported by all the manuscripts, and ought not to be altered, although intra would have been more exact, as the signification of inter is of greater extent, and includes that of intra. Inter is used when a thing is enclosed on each side; intra, when it is inclosed on all sides. If the soldiers, therefore, are considered as surrounded with the vineæ, they should be described as intra vineas; but as there is no reason why they may not also be contemplated as being inclosed only laterally by the vineæ, the phrase inter vineas may surely in that case be applied to them. Gronovius and Drakenborch ad Liv. i., 10, have observed how often these prepositions are interchanged when referred to time.” Kritzius. On vineæ, see c. 76.
- XCIII. A certain Ligurian—in the auxiliary cohorts] The Ligurians were not numbered among the Italians or socii in the Roman army, but attached to it only as auxiliaries.
- A desire—of seeing what he had never seen] More humani ingenii, cupido ignara visundi invadit. This is the reading of Cortius, to which Müller and Allen adhere. Gerlach inserted in his text, More humani ingeni, cupido difficilia faciundi animum vortit; which Kritzius, Orelli, and Dietsch, have adopted, and which Cortius acknowledged to be the reading of the generality of the manuscripts, except that they vary as to the last two words, some having animadvortit. The sense of this reading will be, “the desire of doing something difficult, which is natural to the human mind, drew off his thoughts from gathering snails, and led him to contemplate something of a more arduous character.” But the reading of Cortius gives so much better a sense to the passage, that I have thought proper to follow it. Burnouf, with Havercamp and the editions antecedent to Cortius, reads more humanæ cupidinis ignara visundi animum vortit, of which the first five words are taken from a quotation of Aulus Gellius, ix., 12, who, however, may have transcribed them from some other part of Sallust’s works, now lost.
- Horizontally] Prona. This word here signifies forwards, not downwards, as Anthon and others interpret, for trees growing out of a rock or back will not take a descending direction.
- As nature directs all vegetables] Quò cuncta gignentium natura fert. It is to be observed that the construction is natura fert cuncta gignentium, for cuncta gignentia. On gignentia, i.e. vegetables, or whatever produces anything, see c. 79, and Conspiracy of Catiline#LIII#Cat., c. 53.
- Four centurions for a guard] Præsidio qui forent, quatuor centuriones. It is a question among the commentators whether the centurions were attended by their centuries or not; Cortius thinks that they were not, as ten men were sufficient to cause an alarm in the fortress, which was all that Marius desired. But that Cortius is in the wrong, and that there were common soldiers with the centurions, appears from the following considerations: 1. Marius would hardly have sent, or Sallust have spoken of, four men as a guard to six. 2. Why should centurions only have been selected, and not common soldiers as well as their officers? 3. An expression in the following chapter, laqueis—quibus allevati milites facilius escenderent, seems to prove that there were others present besides the centurions and the trumpeters. The word milites is indeed wanting in the text of Cortius, but appears to have been omitted by him merely to favour his own notion as to the absence of soldiers, for he left it out, as Kritzius says, summâ libidine, ne uno quibus codice assentiente, “purely of his own will, and without the authority of a single manuscript.” Taking a fair view of the passage, we seem necessarily led to believe that the centurions were attended by a portion, if not the whole, of their companies. See the following note.
- XCIV. Those who commanded the centuries] Illi qui centuriis præerant. This is the reading of several manuscripts, and of almost all the editions before that of Kritzius, and may be tolerated if we suppose that the centurions were attended by their men, and that Sallust, in speaking of the change of dress, meant to include the men, although he specifies only the officers. Yet it is difficult to conceive why Sallust should have used such a periphrase for centuriones. Seven of the manuscripts, however, have qui adscensuri erant, which Kritzius and Dietsch have adopted. Two have qui ex centuriis præerant. Allen, not unhappily, conjectures, qui præsidio erant. Cortius suspected the phrase, qui centuriis præerant, and thought it a transformation of the words qui adscensuris præerat, which somebody had written in the margin as an explanation of the following word duce, and which were afterwards altered and thrust into the text.
- Progress—might be less impeded] Nisus—faciliùs foret. The adverb for the adjective. So in the speech of Adherbal, c. 14, ut tutiùs essem.
- Unsafe] Dubia nisu. “Not to be depended upon for support.” Nisu is the old dative for nisui.
- Causing a testudo to be formed] Testudine actâ. The soldiers placed their shields over their heads, and joined them close together, forming a defence like the shell of a tortoise.
- XCV. For I shall in no other place allude to his affairs] Neque enim alio loco de Sullæ rebus dicturi sumus. “These words show that Sallust, at this time, had not thought of writing Histories, but that he turned his attention to that pursuit after he had finished the Jugurthine war. For that he spoke of Sylla in his large history is apparent from several extant fragments of it, and from Plutarch, who quotes Sallust, Vit. Syll., c. 3.” Kritzius.
- Lucius Sisenna] He wrote a history of the civil wars between Sylla and Marius, Vell. Paterc. ii., 9. Cicero alludes to his style as being jejune and puerile, Brut., c. 64, De Legg. i., 2. About a hundred and fifty fragments of his history remain.
- Except that he might have acted more for his honour with regard to his wife] Nisi quod de uxore potuit honestius consuli. As these words are vague and indeterminate, it is not agreed among the critics and translators to what part of Sylla’s life Sallust refers. I suppose, with Rupertus, Aldus Manutius, Crispinus, and De Brosses, that the allusion is to his connexion with Valeria, of which the history is given by Plutarch in his Life of Sylla, which the English reader may take in Langhorne’s translation: “A few months after Metella’s death, he presented the people with a show of gladiators; and as, at that time, men and women had no separate places, but sat promiscuously in the theatre, a woman of great beauty, and of one of the best families, happened to sit near Sylla. She was the daughter of Messala, and sister to the orator Hortensius; her name was Valeria; and she had been lately divorced from her husband. This woman, coming behind Sylla, touched him, and took off a little of the nap of his robe, and then returned to her place. Sylla looked at her, quite amazed at her familiarity, when she said, ‘Wonder not, my lord, at what I have done; I had only a mind to share a little in your good fortune.’ Sylla was far from being displeased; on the contrary, it appeared that he was flattered very agreeably, for he sent to ask her name, and to inquire into her family and character. Then followed an interchange of amorous regards and smiles, which ended in a contract and marriage. The lady, perhaps, was not to blame. But Sylla, though he got a woman of reputation, and great accomplishments, yet came into the match upon wrong principles. Like a youth, he was caught with soft looks and languishing airs, things that are wont to excite the lowest of passions.” Others have thought that Sallust refers to Sylla’s conduct on the death of his wife Metella, above mentioned, to whom, as she happened to fall sick when he was giving an entertainment to the people, and as the priest forbade him to have his house defiled with death on the occasion, he unfeelingly sent a bill of divorce, ordering her to be carried out of the house while the breath was in her. Cortius, Kritz, and Langius, think that the allusion is to Sylla’s general faithlessness to his wives, for he had several; as if Sallust had used the singular for the plural, uxore or uxoribus, or re uxoriâ; but if Sallust meant to allude to more than one wife, why should he have restricted himself to the singular?
- Lived on the easiest terms with his friends] Facilis amicitiâ. The critics are in doubt about the sense of this phrase. I have given that which Dietsch prefers, who says that a man facilis amicitiâ is “one who easily grants his friends all that they desire, exacts little from them, and is no severe censor of their morals.” Cortius explains it facilis ad amicitiam, and Facciolati, in his Lexicon, facilè sibi amicos parans, but these interpretations, as Kritzius observes, are hardly suitable to the ablative case.
- Most fortunate] Felicissumo. Alluding, perhaps, to the title of Felix, which he assumed after his great victory over Marius.
- His desert] Industriam. That is, the efforts which he made to attain distinction.
- XCVII. When scarcely a tenth part of the day remained] Vix decimâ parte die reliquâ. A remarkably exact specification of the time.
- From various quarters] Ex multis. From his scouts, who came in from all sides.
- The Roman veterans, who were necessarily well experienced in war] The reading of Cortius is, Romani veteres, novique, et ob ea scientes belli; which he explains by supposing that the new recruits were joined with the veterans, and that both united were consequently well skilled in war, citing, in support of his supposition, a passage in c. 87: Sic brevi spatio novi veteresque coaluere, et virtus omnium æqualis facta. And Ascensius had previously given a similar explanation, quod etiam veterani adessent. But many later critics have not been induced to believe that Cortius’s reading will bear any such interpretation; and accordingly Kritzius, Dietsch, and Orelli, have ejected novique; as indeed Ciacconius and Ursinus had long before recommended. Müller, Burnouf, and Allen, retain it, adopting Cortius’s interpretation. Gerlach also retains it, but not without hesitation. But it is very remarkable that it occurs in all the manuscripts but one, which has Romani veteres boni scientes erant ut quos locus, &c.
- XCVIII. The enemy being not less disordered] Neque minus hostibus conturbatis. If the enemy had not been in as much disorder as himself, Marius would hardly have been able to effect his retreat.
- At a quick march] Pleno gradu. “By the militaris gradus twenty miles were completed in five hours of a summer day; by the plenus gradus, which is quicker, twenty-four miles were traversed in the same time.” Veget. i., 9.
- XCIX. When the watches were changed] Per vigilias: i.e. at the end of each watch, when the guards were relieved. “The nights, by the aid of a clepsydra, were divided into four watches, the termination of each being marked by the blast of a trumpet or horn. See Veget. iii., 8: A tubicine omnes vigiliæ committuntur; et finitis horis à cornicine revocantur.” Kritzius. He also refers to Liv. vii., 35; Lucan. viii., 24; Tacit. Hist. v., 22.
- Auxiliary cohorts] Cohortium. I have added the word auxiliary. That they were the cohorts of the auxiliaries or allies is apparent, as the word legionum follows. Kritzius indeed thinks otherwise, supposing that the cohorts had particular trumpeters, distinct from those of the whole legion. But for this notion there seems to be no sufficient ground. Sallust speaks of the cohortes sociorum, c. 58, and cohortes Ligurum, c. 100.
- Sally forth from the camp] Portis erumpere. Sallust uses the common phrase for issuing from the camp. It can hardly be supposed that the Romans had formed a regular camp with gates during the short time that they had been upon the hill, especially as they had fled to it in great disorder.
- Stupor] Vecordia. A feeling that deprived them of all sense.
- C. In form of a square] Quadrato agmine. “A hollow square, with the baggage in the centre; see Serv. ad Virg. Æn. xii., 121. . . . Such an agmen Sallust, in c. 46, calls munitum, as it was prepared to defend itself against the enemy, from whatever quarter they might approach.” Kritzius.
- Might be endured by them with cheerfulness] Volentibus esset. A Greek phrase, βουλομένοις εἴη.
- Dread of shame] Pudore. Inducing each to have a regard to his character.
- CI. Trusting that one of them, assuredly, &c.] Ratus ex omnibus æquè aliquos ab tergo hostibus venturos. By æquè Sallust signifies that each of the four bodies would have an equal chance of coming on the rear of the Romans.
- In person and with his officers] Ipse aliique. “The alii are the præfecti equitum, officers of the cavalry.” Kritzius.
- Wheeled secretly about—to the infantry] Clam—ad pedites convortit. What infantry are meant, the commentators cannot agree, nor is there anything in the narrative on which a satisfactory decision can be founded. As the arrival of Bocchus is mentioned immediately before, Cortius supposes that the infantry of Bocchus are signified; and it may be so; but to whatever party the words were addressed, they were intended to be heard by the Romans, or for what purpose were they spoken in Latin? Jugurtha may have spoken the words in both languages, and this, from what follows, would appear to have been the case, for both sides understood him. Quod ubi milites (evidently the Roman soldiers) accepere—simul barbari animos tollere, &c. The clam signifies that Jugurtha turned about, or wheeled off, so as to escape the notice of Marius, with whom he had been contending.
- By vigorously cutting down our infantry] Satis impigrè occiso pedite nostro. “A ces mots il leur montra son épée teinte du sang des nôtres, dont il venoit, en effet, de faire une assez cruelle boucherie.” De Brosses. Of the other French translators, Beauzée and Le Brun render the passage in a similar way; Dotteville and Dureau Delamalle, as well as all our English translators, take pedite as signifying only one soldier. Sir Henry Steuart even specifies that it was “a legionary soldier.” The commentators, I should suppose, have all regarded the word as having a plural signification; none of them, except Burnouf, who expresses a needless doubt, say anything on the point.
- The spectacle on the open plains was then frightful, &c.] Tum spectaculum horribile campis patentibus, &c. The idea of this passage was probably taken, as Ciaconnius intimates, from a description in Xenophon, Agesil. ii., 12, 14, part of which is quoted by Longinus, Sect. 19, as an example of the effect produced by the omission of conjunctions: Καὶ συμβαλόντες τὰς ἀσπίδας ἐωθοῦντο, ἐμάχοντο, ἀπέκτεινον, ἀπέθνησκον. . . . Ἐπεί γε μὴν ἔληξεν ἡ μάχη, παρῆν δὴ θεάσασθαι ἔνθα συνέπεσον ἀλλήλοις, τὴν μὲν γῆν ἁίματι πεφυρμένην, νεκροὺς δὲ κειμένους φιλίους καὶ πολεμίους μετ’ ἀλλήλων, ἀσπίδας δὲ διατεθρυμμένας, δόρατα συντεθραυσμένα, ἐγχειρίδια γυμνὰ κουλεῶν τὰ μὲν χαμαὶ, τὰ δ’ ἐν σώμασι, τὰ δ’ ἔτι μετὰ χεῖρας. “Closing their shields together, they pushed, they fought, they slew, they were slain. . . . But when the battle was over, you might have seen, where they had fought, the ground clotted with blood, the corpses of friends and enemies mingled together, and pierced shields, broken lances, and swords without their sheaths, strewed on the ground, sticking in the dead bodies, or still remaining in the hands that had wielded them when alive.” Tacitus, Agric. c. 37, has copied this description of Sallust, as all the commentators have remarked: Tum verò patentibus locis grande et atrox spectaculum. Sequi, vulnerare, capere, atque eosdem, oblatis aliis, trucidare. . . . Passim arma et corpora, et laceri artus, et cruenta humus. “The sight on the open field was then striking and horrible; they pursued, they inflicted wounds, they took men prisoners, and slaughtered them as others presented themselves. . . . Everywhere were seen arms and corpses, mangled limbs, and the ground stained with blood.”
- CII. Besides, the Roman people, even from the very infancy, &c.] The reading of this passage, before the edition of Cortius, was this: Ad hoc, populo Romano jam à principio inopi melius visum amicos, quàm servos, quærere. Gruter proposed to read Ad hoc populo Romano inopi melius est visum, &c., whence Cortius made Ad hoc, populo Romano jam inopi visum, &c. But the Bipont editors, observing that inopi was not quite consistent with quærere servos, altered the passage to Ad hoc, populo Romano jam à principio reipublicæ melius visum, &c., which seems to be the best emendation that has been proposed, and which I have accordingly followed. Kritzius and Dietsch adopt it, except that they omit reipublicæ, and put nothing in the place of inopi. Gerlach retains inopi, on the principle of “quo insolentius, eo verius,” and it may, after all, be genuine. Cortius omitted melius on no authority but his own.
- Out of which he had forcibly driven Jugurtha] Unde vi Jugurtham expulerit [expulerat]. There is here some obscurity. The manuscripts vary between expulerit and expulerat. Cortius, and Gerlach in his second edition, adopt expulerat, which they of necessity refer to Marius; but to make Bocchus speak thus, is, as Kritzius says, to make him speak very foolishly and arrogantly. Kritzius himself, accordingly, adopts expulerit, and supposes that Bocchus invents a falsehood, in the belief that the Romans would have no means of detecting it. But Bocchus may have spoken truth, referring, as Müller suggests, to some previous transactions between him and Jugurtha, to which Sallust does not elsewhere allude.
- CIII. In ill plight] Sine decore.
- Interested bounty] Largitio. “The word signifies liberal treatment of others with a view to our own interest; without any real goodwill.” Müller. “He intends a severe stricture on his own age, and the manners of the Romans.” Dietsch.
- About forty days] Waiting, apparently, for the return of Marius.
- CIV. Having failed in the object, &c.] Infecto, quo intenderat, negotio. Though this is the reading of most of the manuscripts, Kritzius, Müller, and Dietsch, read confecto, as if Marius could not have failed in his attempt.
- Are always verging to opposite extremes] Semper in advorsa mutant. Rose renders this “are always changing, and constantly for the worse;” and most other translators have given something similar. But this is absurd; for every one sees that all changes in human affairs are not for the worse. Adversa is evidently to be taken in the sense which I have given.
- CV. At his discretion] Arbitratu. Kritzius observes that this word comprehends the notion of plenary powers to treat and decide: der mit unbeschränkter Vollmacht unterhandeln Könnte.
- Presenting] Intendere. The critics are in doubt to what to refer this word; some have thought of understanding animum; Cortius, Wasse, and Müller, think it is meant only of the bows of the archers; Kritzius, Burnouf, and Allen, refer it, apparently with better judgment, to the arma and tela in general.
- CVI. To despatch their supper] Cœnatus esse. “The perfect is not without its force; it signifies that Sylla wished his orders to be performed with the greatest expedition.” Kritzius. He orders them to have done supper.
- CVII. And blind parts of his body] Cæcum corpus. Imitated from Xenophon, Cyrop. iii., 3, 45: Μωρὸν γὰρ τὸ κρατεῖν βουλομένους, τὰ τυφλὰ τοῦ σώματος, καὶ ἄοπλα, καὶ ἄχειρα, ταῦτα ἐναντία τάττειν τοῖς πολεμίοις φεύγοντας. “It is folly for those that desire to conquer, to turn the blind, unarmed, and handless parts of the body, to the enemy in flight.”
- As being an instrument of his father’s hostility] Quoniam hostilia faceret. “Since he wished to deceive the Romans by pretended friendship.” Müller.
- Of the family of Masinissa] Ex gente Masinissæ. Massugrada was the son of Masinissa by a concubine.
- Faithful] Fidum. After this word, in the editions of Cortius, Kritzius, Gerlach, Allen, and Dietsch, follows Romanis or esse Romanis. These critics defend Romanis on the plea that a dative is necessary after fidum, and that it was of importance, as Castilioneus observes, that Dabar should be well disposed towards the Romans, and not have been corrupted, like many other courtiers of Bocchus, by the bribes of Jugurtha. Glareanus, Badius Ascensius, the Bipont editors, and Burnouf, with most of the translators, omit Romanis, and I have thought proper to imitate their example.
- Place, day, and hour] Diem, locum, tempus. Not only the day, but the time of the day.
- That he kept all points, which he had settled with him before, inviolate] Consulta esse omnia cum illo integra habere. Kritzius justly observes that most editors, in interpreting this passage, have erroneously given to consulta the sense of consulenda; and that the sense is, “that all that he had arranged with Sylla, remained unaltered, and that he was not drawn from his resolutions by the influence of Jugurtha.”
- And that he was not to fear the presence of Jugurtha’s ambassador, as any restraint, &c.] Neu Jugurthæ legatum pertimesceret, quo res communis licentius gereretur. There is some difficulty in this passage. Burnouf makes the nearest approach to a satisfactory explanation of it. “Sylla,” says he, “was not to fear the envoy of Jugurtha, quo, on which account (equivalent to eoque, and on that account, i.e. on account of his freedom from apprehension) their common interests would be more freely arranged.” Yet it appears from what follows that fear of Jugurtha’s envoy could not be dismissed, and that there could be no freedom of discussion in his presence, as Sylla was to say but little before him, and to speak more at large at a private meeting. These considerations have induced Kritzius to suppose that the word remoto, or something similar, has been lost after quo. The Bipont editors inserted cautum esse before quo, which is without authority, and does not at all assist the sense.
- African duplicity] Punicâ fide. “Punica fides was a well-known proverbial expression for treachery and deceit. The origin of it is perhaps attributable not so much to fact, as to the implacable hatred of the Romans toward the Carthaginians.” Burnouf.
- CIX. What answer should be returned by Bocchus] That is, in the presence of Aspar.
- Both then retired to their respective camps] Deinde ambo in sua castra digressi. Both, i.e. Bocchus and Sylla, not Aspar and Sylla, as Cortius imagines.
- CX. It will be a pleasure to me] Fuerit mihi. Some editions, as that of Langius, the Bipont, and Burnouf’s, have fuerit mihi pretium. Something of the kind seems to be wanting. “Res in bonis numeranda fuerit mihi.” Burnouf. Allen, who omits pretium, interprets, “Grata mihi egestas sit, quæ ad tuam amicitiam confugiat;” but who can deduce this sense from the passage, unless he have pretium, or something similar, in his mind?
- CXI. That part of Numidia which he claimed] Numidiæ partem quam nunc peteret. See the second note on c. 102. Bocchus continues, in his speech in the preceding chapter, to signify that a part of Numidia belonged to him.
- The ties of blood] Cognationem. To this blood-relationship between him and Jugurtha no allusion is elsewhere made.
- His resolution gave way] Lenitur. Cortius, whom Gerlach and Müller follow, reads leniter, but, with Kritzius and Gerlach, I prefer the verb to the adverb; which, however, is found in the greater number of the manuscripts.
- CXII. Interests of both] Ambobus. Both himself and Jugurtha.
- CXIV. At that time] Eâ tempestate. “In many manuscripts is found ex eâ tempestate, by which the sense is wholly perverted. Sallust signifies that Marius did not continue always deserving of such honour; for, as is said in c. 63, ‘he was afterwards carried headlong by ambition.’” Kritzius.