Religion, Culture, Literature, and Art

State Religion

In the development of religion and philosophy no new element appeared during this epoch. The Romano-Hellenic state-religion and the Stoic state-philosophy inseparably combined with it were for every government—oligarchy, democracy or monarchy—not merely a convenient instrument, but quite indispensable for the very reason that it was just as impossible to construct the state wholly without religious elements as to discover any new state-religion fitted to take the place of the old. So the besom of revolution swept doubtless at times very roughly through the cobwebs of the augural bird-lore;(1) nevertheless the rotten machine creaking at every joint survived the earthquake which swallowed up the republic itself, and preserved its insipidity and its arrogance without diminution for transference to the new monarchy. As a matter of course, it fell more and more into disfavour with all those who preserved their freedom of judgment. Towards the state-religion indeed public opinion maintained an attitude essentially indifferent; it was on all sides recognized as an institution of political convenience, and no one specially troubled himself about it with the exception of political and antiquarian literati. But towards its philosophical sister there gradually sprang up among the unprejudiced public that hostility, which the empty and yet perfidious hypocrisy of set phrases never fails in the long run to awaken. That a presentiment of its own worthlessness began to dawn on the Stoa itself, is shown by its attempt artificially to infuse into itself some fresh spirit in the way of syncretism. Antiochus of Ascalon (flourishing about 675), who professed to have patched together the Stoic and Platonic-Aristotelian systems into one organic unity, in reality so far succeeded that his misshapen doctrine became the fashionable philosophy of the conservatives of his time and was conscientiously studied by the genteel dilettanti and literati of Rome. Every one who displayed any intellectual vigour, opposed the Stoa or ignored it. It was principally antipathy towards the boastful and tiresome Roman Pharisees, coupled doubtless with the increasing disposition to take refuge from practical life in indolent apathy or empty irony, that occasioned during this epoch the extension of the system of Epicurus to a larger circle and the naturalization of the Cynic philosophy of Diogenes in Rome. However stale and poor in thought the former might be, a philosophy, which did not seek the way to wisdom through an alteration of traditional terms but contented itself with those in existence, and throughout recognized only the perceptions of sense as true, was always better than the terminological jingle and the hollow conceptions of the Stoic wisdom; and the Cynic philosophy was of all the philosophical systems of the times in so far by much the best, as its system was confined to the having no system at all and sneering at all systems and all systematizers. In both fields war was waged against the Stoa with zeal and success; for serious men, the Epicurean Lucretius preached with the full accents of heartfelt conviction and of holy zeal against the Stoical faith in the gods and providence and the Stoical doctrine of the immortality of the soul; for the great public ready to laugh, the Cynic Varro hit the mark still more sharply with the flying darts of his extensively- read satires. While thus the ablest men of the older generation made war on the Stoa, the younger generation again, such as Catullus, stood in no inward relation to it at all, and passed a far sharper censure on it by completely ignoring it.

The Oriental Religions

But, if in the present instance a faith no longer believed in was maintained out of political convenience, they amply made up for this in other respects. Unbelief and superstition, different hues of the same historical phenomenon, went in the Roman world of that day hand in hand, and there was no lack of individuals who in themselves combined both—who denied the gods with Epicurus, and yet prayed and sacrificed before every shrine. Of course only the gods that came from the east were still in vogue, and, as the men continued to flock from the Greek lands to Italy, so the gods of the east migrated in ever-increasing numbers to the west. The importance of the Phrygian cultus at that time in Rome is shown both by the polemical tone of the older men such as Varro and Lucretius, and by the poetical glorification of it in the fashionable Catullus, which concludes with the characteristic request that the goddess may deign to turn the heads of others only, and not that of the poet himself.

Worship of Mithra

A fresh addition was the Persian worship, which is said to have first reached the Occidental through the medium of the pirates who met on the Mediterranean from the east and from the west; the oldest seat of this cultus in the west is stated to have been Mount Olympus in Lycia. That in the adoption of Oriental worships in the west such higher speculative and moral elements as they contained were generally allowed to drop, is strikingly evinced by the fact that Ahuramazda, the supreme god of the pure doctrine of Zarathustra, remained virtually unknown in the west, and adoration there was especially directed to that god who had occupied the first place in the old Persian national religion and had been transferred by Zarathustra to the second—the sun-god Mithra.

Worship of Isis

But the brighter and gentler celestial forms of the Persian religion did not so rapidly gain a footing in Rome as the wearisome mystical host of the grotesque divinities of Egypt—Isis the mother of nature with her whole train, the constantly dying and constantly reviving Osiris, the gloomy Sarapis, the taciturn and grave Harpocrates, the dog-headed Anubis. In the year when Clodius emancipated the clubs and conventicles (696), and doubtless in consequence of this very emancipation of the populace, that host even prepared to make its entry into the old stronghold of the Roman Jupiter in the Capitol, and it was with difficulty that the invasion was prevented and the inevitable temples were banished at least to the suburbs of Rome. No worship was equally popular among the lower orders of the population in the capital: when the senate ordered the temples of Isis constructed within the ring-wall to be pulled down, no labourer ventured to lay the first hand on them, and the consul Lucius Paullus was himself obliged to apply the first stroke of the axe(704); a wager might be laid, that the more loose any woman was, the more piously she worshipped Isis. That the casting of lots, the interpretation of dreams, and similar liberal arts supported their professors, was a matter of course. The casting of horoscopes was already a scientific pursuit; Lucius Tarutius of Firmum, a respectable and in his own way learned man, a friend of Varro and Cicero, with all gravity cast the nativity of kings Romulus and Numa and of the city of Rome itself, and for the edification of the credulous on either side confirmed by means of his Chaldaean and Egyptian wisdom the accounts of the Roman annals.

The New Pythagoreanism
Nigidius Figulus

But by far the most remarkable phenomenon in this domain was the first attempt to mingle crude faith with speculative thought, the first appearance of those tendencies, which we are accustomed to describe as Neo-Platonic, in the Roman world. Their oldest apostle there was Publius Nigidius Figulus, a Roman of rank belonging to the strictest section of the aristocracy, who filled the praetorship in 696 and died in 709 as a political exile beyond the bounds of Italy. With astonishing copiousness of learning and still more astonishing strength of faith he created out of the most dissimilar elements a philosophico-religious structure, the singular outline of which he probably developed still more in his oral discourses than in his theological and physical writings. In philosophy, seeking deliverance from the skeletons of the current systems and abstractions, he recurred to the neglected fountain of the pre-Socratic philosophy, to whose ancient sages thought had still presented itself with sensuous vividness. The researches of physical science—which, suitably treated, afford even now so excellent a handle for mystic delusion and pious sleight of hand, and in antiquity with its more defective insight into physical laws lent themselves still more easily to such objects—played in this case, as may readily be conceived, a considerable part. His theology was based essentially on that strange medley, in which Greeks of a kindred spirit had intermingled Orphic and other very old or very new indigenous wisdom with Persian, Chaldaean, and Egyptian secret doctrines, and with which Figulus incorporated the quasi-results of the Tuscan investigation into nothingness and of the indigenous lore touching the flight of birds, so as to produce further harmonious confusion. The whole system obtained its consecration—political, religious, and national—from the name of Pythagoras, the ultra-conservative statesman whose supreme principle was "to promote order and to check disorder," the miracle-worker and necromancer, the primeval sage who was a native of Italy, who was interwoven even with the legendary history of Rome, and whose statue was to be seen in the Roman Forum. As birth and death are kindred with each other, so—it seemed—Pythagoras was to stand not merely by the cradle of the republic as friend of the wise Numa and colleague of the sagacious mother Egeria, but also by its grave as the last protector of the sacred bird-lore. But the new system was not merely marvellous, it also worked marvels; Nigidius announced to the father of the subsequent emperor Augustus, on the very day when the latter was born, the future greatness of his son; nay the prophets conjured up spirits for the credulous, and, what was of more moment, they pointed out to them the places where their lost money lay. The new-and-old wisdom, such as it was, made a profound impression on its contemporaries; men of the highest rank, of the greatest learning, of the most solid ability, belonging to very different parties—the consul of 705, Appius Claudius, the learned Marcus Varro, the brave officer Publius Vatinius— took part in the citation of spirits, and it even appears that a police interference was necessary against the proceedings of these societies. These last attempts to save the Roman theology, like the kindred efforts of Cato in the field of politics, produce at once a comical and a melancholy impression; we may smile at the creed and its propagators, but still it is a grave matter when even able men begin to addict themselves to absurdity.

Training of Youth
Sciences of General Culture at This Period

The training of youth followed, as may naturally be supposed, the course of bilingual humane culture chalked out in the previous epoch, and the general culture also of the Roman world conformed more and more to the forms established for that purpose by the Greeks. Even the bodily exercises advanced from ball-playing, running, and fencing to the more artistically-developed Greek gymnastic contests; though there were not yet any public institutions for gymnastics, in the principal country-houses the palaestra was already to be found by the side of the bath-rooms. The manner in which the cycle of general culture had changed in the Roman world during the course of a century, is shown by a comparison of the encyclopaedia of Cato(2) with the similar treatise of Varro "concerning the school-sciences." As constituent elements of non-professional culture, there appear in Cato the art of oratory, the sciences of agriculture, of law, of war, and of medicine; in Varro—according to probable conjecture—grammar, logic or dialectics, rhetoric, geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, music, medicine, and architecture. Consequently in the course of the seventh century the sciences of war, jurisprudence, and agriculture had been converted from general into professional studies. On the other hand in Varro the Hellenic training of youth appears already in all its completeness: by the side of the course of grammar, rhetoric, and philosophy, which had been introduced at an earlier period into Italy, we now find the course which had longer remained distinctively Hellenic, of geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, and music.(3) That astronomy more especially, which ministered, in the nomenclature of the stars, to the thoughtless erudite dilettantism of the age and, in its relations to astrology, to the prevailing religious delusions, was regularly and zealously studied by the youth in Italy, can be proved also otherwise; the astronomical didactic poems of Aratus, among all the works of Alexandrian literature, found earliest admittance into the instruction of Roman youth. To this Hellenic course there was added the study of medicine, which was retained from the older Roman instruction, and lastly that of architecture—indispensable to the genteel Roman of this period, who instead of cultivatingthe ground built houses and villas.

Greek Instruction

In comparison with the previous epoch the Greek as well as the Latin training improved in extent and in scholastic strictness quite as much as it declined in purity and in refinement. The increasing eagerness after Greek lore gave to instruction of itself an erudite character. To explain Homer or Euripides was after all no art; teachers and scholars found their account better in handling the Alexandrian poems, which, besides, were in their spirit far more congenial to the Roman world of that day than the genuine Greek national poetry, and which, if they were not quite so venerable as the Iliad, possessed at any rate an age sufficiently respectable to pass as classics with schoolmasters. The love-poems of Euphorion, the "Causes" of Callimachus and his "Ibis," the comically obscure "Alexandra" of Lycophron contained in rich abundance rare vocables (-glossae-) suitable for being extracted and interpreted, sentences laboriously involved and difficult of analysis, prolix digressions full of mystic combinations of antiquated myths, and generally a store of cumbersome erudition of all sorts. Instruction needed exercises more and more difficult; these productions, in great part model efforts of schoolmasters, were excellently adapted to be lessons for model scholars. Thus the Alexandrian poems took a permanent place in Italian scholastic instruction, especially as trial-themes, and certainly promoted knowledge, although at the expense of taste and of discretion. The same unhealthy appetite for culture moreover impelled the Roman youths to derive their Hellenism as much as possible from the fountain-head. The courses of the Greek masters in Rome sufficed only for a first start; every one who wished to be able to converse heard lectures on Greek philosophy at Athens, and on Greek rhetoric at Rhodes, and made a literary and artistic tour through Asia Minor, where most of the old art-treasures of the Hellenes were still to be found on the spot, and the cultivation of the fine arts had been continued, although after a mechanical fashion; whereas Alexandria, more distant and more celebrated as the seat of the exact sciences, was far more rarely the point whither young men desirous of culture directed their travels.

Latin Instruction

The advance in Latin instruction was similar to that of Greek. This in part resulted from the mere reflex influence of the Greek, from which it in fact essentially borrowed its methods and its stimulants. Moreover, the relations of politics, the impulse to mount the orators' platform in the Forum which was imparted by the democratic doings to an ever-widening circle, contributed not a little to the diffusion and enhancement of oratorical exercises; "wherever one casts his eyes," says Cicero, "every place is full of rhetoricians." Besides, the writings of the sixth century, the farther they receded into the past, began to be more decidedly regarded as classical texts of the golden age of Latin literature, and thereby gave a greater preponderance to the instruction which was essentially concentrated upon them. Lastly the immigration and spreading of barbarian elements from many quarters and the incipient Latinizing of extensive Celtic and Spanish districts, naturally gave to Latin grammar and Latin instruction a higher importance than they could have had, so long as Latium only spoke Latin; the teacher of Latin literature had from the outset a different position in Comum and Narbo than he had in Praeneste and Ardea. Taken as a whole, culture was more on the wane than on the advance. The ruin of the Italian country towns, the extensive intrusion of foreign elements, the political, economic, and moral deterioration of the nation, above all, the distracting civil wars inflicted more injury on the language than all the schoolmasters of the world could repair. The closer contact with the Hellenic culture of the present, the more decided influence of the talkative Athenian wisdom and of the rhetoric of Rhodes and Asia Minor, supplied to the Roman youth just the very elements that were most pernicious in Hellenism. The propagandist mission which Latium undertook among the Celts, Iberians, and Libyans—proud as the task was— could not but have the like consequences for the Latin language as the Hellenizing of the east had had for the Hellenic. The fact that the Roman public of this period applauded the well arranged and rhythmically balanced periods of the orator, and any offence in language or metre cost the actor dear, doubtless shows that the insight into the mother tongue which was the reflection of scholastic training was becoming the common possession of an ever- widening circle. But at the same time contemporaries capable of judging complain that the Hellenic culture in Italy about 690 was at a far lower level than it had been a generation before; that opportunities of hearing pure and good Latin were but rare, and these chiefly from the mouth of elderly cultivated ladies; that the tradition of genuine culture, the good old Latin mother wit, the Lucilian polish, the cultivated circle of readers of the Scipionic age were gradually disappearing. The circumstance that the term -urbanitas-, and the idea of a polished national culture which it expressed, arose during this period, proves, not that it was prevalent, but that it was on the wane, and that people were keenly alive to the absence of this -urbanitas- in the language and the habits of the Latinized barbarians or barbarized Latins. Where we still meet with the urbane tone of conversation, as in Varro's Satires and Cicero's Letters, it is an echo of the old fashion which was not yet so obsolete in Reate and Arpinum as in Rome.

Germs of State Training-Schools

Thus the previous culture of youth remained substantially unchanged, except that—not so much from its own deterioration as from the general decline of the nation—it was productive of less good and more evil than in the preceding epoch. Caesar initiated a revolution also in this department. While the Roman senate had first combated and then at the most had simply tolerated culture, the government of the new Italo-Hellenic empire, whose essence in fact was -humanitas-, could not but adopt measures to stimulate it after the Hellenic fashion. If Caesar conferred the Roman franchise on all teachers of the liberal sciences and all the physicians of the capital, we may discover in this step a paving of the way in some degree for those institutions in which subsequently the higher bilingual culture of the youth of the empire was provided for on the part of the state, and which form the most significant expression of the new state of -humanitas-; and if Caesar had further resolved on the establishment of a public Greek and Latin library in the capital and had already nominated the most learned Roman of the age, Marcus Varro, as principal librarian, this implied unmistakeably the design of connecting the cosmopolitan monarchy with cosmopolitan literature.

The Vulgarism of Asia Minor

The development of the language during this period turned on the distinction between the classical Latin of cultivated society and the vulgar language of common life. The former itself was a product of the distinctively Italian culture; even in the Scipionic circle "pure Latin" had become the cue, and the mother tongue was spoken, no longer in entire naivete, but in conscious contradistinction to the language of the great multitude. This epoch opens with a remarkable reaction against the classicism which had hitherto exclusively prevailed in the higher language of conversation and accordingly also in literature—a reaction which had inwardly and outwardly a close connection with the reaction of a similar nature in the language of Greece. Just about this time the rhetor and romance-writer Hegesias of Magnesia and the numerous rhetors and literati of Asia Minor who attached themselves to him began to rebel against the orthodox Atticism. They demanded full recognition for the language of life, without distinction, whether the word or the phrase originated in Attica or in Caria and Phrygia; they themselves spoke and wrote not for the taste of learned cliques, but for that of the great public. There could not be much objection to the principle; only, it is true, the result could not be better than was the public of Asia Minor of that day, which had totally lost the taste for chasteness and purity of production, and longed only after the showy and brilliant. To say nothing of the spurious forms of art that sprang out of this tendency—especially the romance and the history assuming the form of romance—the very style of these Asiatics was, as may readily be conceived, abrupt and without modulation and finish, minced and effeminate, full of tinsel and bombast, thoroughly vulgar and affected; "any one who knows Hegesias," says Cicero, "knows what silliness is."

Roman Vulgarism
The Rhodian School

Yet this new style found its way also into the Latin world. When the Hellenic fashionable rhetoric, after having at the close of the previous epoch obtruded into the Latin instruction of youth,(4) took at the beginning of the present period the final step and mounted the Roman orators' platform in the person of Quintus Hortensius (640-704), the most celebrated pleader of the Sullan age, it adhered closely even in the Latin idiom to the bad Greek taste of the time; and the Roman public, no longer having the pure and chaste culture of the Scipionic age, naturally applauded with zeal the innovator who knew how to give to vulgarism the semblance of an artistic performance. This was of great importance. As in Greece the battles of language were always waged at first in the schools of the rhetoricians, so in Rome the forensic oration to a certain extent even more than literature set the standard of style, and accordingly there was combined, as it were of right, with the leadership of the bar the prerogative of giving the tone to the fashionable mode of speaking and writing. The Asiatic vulgarism of Hortensius thus dislodged classicism from the Roman platform and partly also from literature. But the fashion soon changed once more in Greece and in Rome. In the former it was the Rhodian school of rhetoricians, which, without reverting to all the chaste severity of the Attic style, attempted to strike out a middle course between it and the modern fashion: if the Rhodian masters were not too particular as to the internal correctness of their thinking and speaking, they at least insisted on purity of language and style, on the careful selection of words and phrases, and the giving thorough effect to the modulation of sentences.


In Italy it was Marcus Tullius Cicero (648-711) who, after having in his early youth gone along with the Hortensian manner, was brought by hearing the Rhodian masters and by his own more matured taste to better paths, and thenceforth addicted himself to strict purity of language and the thorough periodic arrangement and modulation of his discourse. The models of language, which, in this respect he followed, he found especially in those circles of the higher Roman society which had suffered but little or not at all from vulgarism; and, as was already said, there were still such, although they were beginning to disappear. The earlier Latin and the good Greek literature, however considerable was the influence of the latter more especially on the rhythm of his oratory, were in this matter only of secondary moment: this purifying of the language was by no means a reaction of the language of books against that of conversation, but a reaction of the language of the really cultivated against the jargon of spurious and partial culture. Caesar, in the department of language also the greatest master of his time, expressed the fundamental idea of Roman classicism, when he enjoined that in speech and writing every foreign word should be avoided, as rocks are avoided by the mariner; the poetical and the obsolete word of the older literature was rejected as well as the rustic phrase or that borrowed from the language of common life, and more especially the Greek words and phrases which, as the letters of this period show, had to a very great extent found their way into conversational language. Nevertheless this scholastic and artificial classicism of the Ciceronian period stood to the Scipionic as repentance to innocence, or the French of the classicists under Napoleon to the model French of Moliere and Boileau; while the former classicism had sprung out of the full freshness of life, the latter as it were caught just in right time the last breath of a race perishing beyond recovery. Such as it was, it rapidly diffused itself. With the leadership of the bar the dictatorship of language and taste passed from Hortensius to Cicero, and the varied and copious authorship of the latter gave to this classicism—what it had hitherto lacked—extensive prose texts. Thus Cicero became the creator of the modern classical Latin prose, and Roman classicism attached itself throughout and altogether to Cicero as a stylist; it was to the stylist Cicero, not to the author, still less to the statesman, that the panegyrics—extravagant yet not made up wholly of verbiage—applied, with which the most gifted representatives of classicism, such as Caesar and Catullus, loaded him.

The New Roman Poetry

They soon went farther. What Cicero did in prose, was carried out in poetry towards the end of the epoch by the new Roman school of poets, which modelled itself on the Greek fashionable poetry, and in which the man of most considerable talent was Catullus. Here too the higher language of conversation dislodged the archaic reminiscences which hitherto to a large extent prevailed in this domain, and as Latin prose submitted to the Attic rhythm, so Latin poetry submitted gradually to the strict or rather painful metrical laws of the Alexandrines; e. g. from the time of Catullus, it is no longer allowable at once to begin a verse and to close a sentence begun in the verse preceding with a monosyllabic word or a dissyllabic one not specially weighty.

Grammatical Science

At length science stepped in, fixed the law of language, and developed its rule, which was no longer determined on the basis of experience, but made the claim to determine experience. The endings of declension, which hitherto had in part been variable, were now to be once for all fixed; e. g. of the genitive and dative forms hitherto current side by side in the so-called fourth declension (-senatuis- and -senatus-, -senatui-, and -senatu-) Caesar recognized exclusively as valid the contracted forms (-us and -u). In orthography various changes were made, to bring the written more fully into correspondence with the spoken language; thus the -u in the middle of words like -maxumus- was replaced after Caesar's precedent by -i; and of the two letters which had become superfluous, -k and -q, the removal of the first was effected, and that of the second was at least proposed. The language was, if not yet stereotyped, in the course of becoming so; it was not yet indeed unthinkingly dominated by rule, but it had already become conscious of it. That this action in the department of Latin grammar derived generally its spirit and method from the Greek, and not only so, but that the Latin language was also directly rectified in accordance with Greek precedent, is shown, for example, by the treatment of the final -s, which till towards the close of this epoch had at pleasure passed sometimes as a consonant, sometimes not as one, but was treated by the new- fashioned poets throughout, as in Greek, as a consonantal termination. This regulation of language is the proper domain of Roman classicism; in the most various ways, and for that very reason all the more significantly, the rule is inculcated and the offence against it rebuked by the coryphaei of classicism, by Cicero, by Caesar, even in the poems of Catullus; whereas the older generation expresses itself with natural keenness of feeling respecting the revolution which had affected the field of language as remorselessly as the field of politics.(5) But while the new classicism—that is to say, the standard Latin governed by rule and as far as possible placed on a parity with the standard Greek— which arose out of a conscious reaction against the vulgarism intruding into higher society and even into literature, acquired literary fixity and systematic shape, the latter by no means evacuated the field. Not only do we find it naively employed in the works of secondary personages who have drifted into the ranks of authors merely by accident, as in the account of Caesar's second Spanish war, but we shall meet it also with an impress more or less distinct in literature proper, in the mime, in the semi-romance, in the aesthetic writings of Varro; and it is a significant circumstance, that it maintains itself precisely in the most national departments of literature, and that truly conservative men, like Varro, take it into protection. Classicism was based on the death of the Italian language as monarchy on the decline of the Italian nation; it was completely consistent that the men, in whom the republic was still living, should continue to give to the living language its rights, and for the sake of its comparative vitality and nationality should tolerate its aesthetic defects. Thus then the linguistic opinions and tendencies of this epoch are everywhere divergent; by the side of the old-fashioned poetry of Lucretius appears the thoroughly modern poetry of Catullus, by the side of Cicero's well-modulated period stands the sentence of Varro intentionally disdaining all subdivision. In this field likewise is mirrored the distraction of the age.

Literary Effort
Greek Literati in Rome

In the literature of this period we are first of all struck by the outward increase, as compared with the former epoch, of literary effort in Rome. It was long since the literary activity of the Greeks flourished no more in the free atmosphere of civic independence, but only in the scientific institutions of the larger cities and especially of the courts. Left to depend on the favour and protection of the great, and dislodged from the former seats of the Muses(6) by the extinction of the dynasties of Pergamus (621), Cyrene (658), Bithynia (679), and Syria (690) and by the waning splendour of the court of the Lagids—moreover, since the death of Alexander the Great, necessarily cosmopolitan and at least quite as much strangers among the Egyptians and Syrians as among the Latins— the Hellenic literati began more and more to turn their eyes towards Rome. Among the host of Greek attendants with which the Roman of quality at this time surrounded himself, the philosopher, the poet, and the memoir-writer played conspicuous parts by the side of the cook, the boy-favourite, and the jester. We meet already literati of note in such positions; the Epicurean Philodemus, for instance, was installed as domestic philosopher with Lucius Piso consul in 696, and occasionally edified the initiated with his clever epigrams on the coarse-grained Epicureanism of his patron. From all sides the most notable representatives of Greek art and science migrated in daily-increasing numbers to Rome where literary gains were now more abundant than anywhere else. Among those thus mentioned as settled in Rome we find the physician Asclepiades whom king Mithradates vainly endeavoured to draw away from it into his service; the universalist in learning, Alexander of Miletus, termed Polyhistor; the poet Parthenius from Nicaea in Bithynia; Posidonius of Apamea in Syria equally celebrated as a traveller, teacher, and author, who at a great age migrated in 703 from Rhodes to Rome; and various others. A house like that of Lucius Lucullus was a seat of Hellenic culture and a rendezvous for Hellenic literati almost like the Alexandrian Museum; Roman resources and Hellenic connoisseurship had gathered in these halls of wealth and science an incomparable collection of statues and paintings of earlier and contemporary masters, as well as a library as carefully selected as it was magnificently fitted up, and every person of culture and especially every Greek was welcome there—the master of the house himself was often seen walking up and down the beautiful colonnade in philological or philosophical conversation with one of his learned guests. No doubt these Greeks brought along with their rich treasures of culture their preposterousness and servility to Italy; one of these learned wanderers for instance, the author of the "Art of Flattery," Aristodemus of Nysa (about 700) recommended himself to his masters by demonstrating that Homer was a native of Rome!

Extent of the Literary Pursuits of the Romans

In the same measure as the pursuits of the Greek literati prospered in Rome, literary activity and literary interest increased among the Romans themselves. Even Greek composition, which the stricter taste of the Scipionic age had totally set aside, now revived. The Greek language was now universally current, and a Greek treatise found a quite different public from a Latin one; therefore Romans of rank, such as Lucius Lucullus, Marcus Cicero, Titus Atticus, Quintus Scaevola (tribune of the people in 700), like the kings of Armenia and Mauretania, published occasionally Greek prose and even Greek verses. Such Greek authorship however by native Romans remained a secondary matter and almost an amusement; the literary as well as the political parties of Italy all coincided in adhering to their Italian nationality, only more or less pervaded by Hellenism. Nor could there be any complaint at least as to want of activity in the field of Latin authorship. There was a flood of books and pamphlets of all sorts, and above all of poems, in Rome. Poets swarmed there, as they did only in Tarsus or Alexandria; poetical publications had become the standing juvenile sin of livelier natures, and even then the writer was reckoned fortunate whose youthful poems compassionate oblivion withdrew from criticism. Any one who understood the art, wrote without difficulty at a sitting his five hundred hexameters in which no schoolmaster found anything to censure, but no reader discovered anything to praise. The female world also took a lively part in these literary pursuits; the ladies did not confine themselves to dancing and music, but by their spirit and wit ruled conversation and talked excellently on Greek and Latin literature; and, when poetry laid siege to a maiden's heart, the beleaguered fortress not seldom surrendered likewise in graceful verses. Rhythms became more and more the fashionable plaything of the big children of both sexes; poetical epistles, joint poetical exercises and competitions among good friends, were of common occurrence, and towards the end of this epoch institutions were already opened in the capital, at which unfledged Latin poets might learn verse-making for money. In consequence of the large consumption of books the machinery for the manufacture of copies was substantially perfected, and publication was effected with comparative rapidity and cheapness; bookselling became a respectable and lucrative trade, and the bookseller's shop a usual meeting-place of men of culture. Reading had become a fashion, nay a mania; at table, where coarser pastimes had not already intruded, reading was regularly introduced, and any one who meditated a journey seldom forgot to pack up a travelling library. The superior officer was seen in the camp-tent with the obscene Greek romance, the statesman in the senate with the philosophical treatise, in his hands. Matters accordingly stood in the Roman state as they have stood and will stand in every state where the citizens read "from the threshold to the closet." The Parthian vizier was not far wrong, when he pointed out to the citizens of Seleucia the romances found in the camp of Crassus and asked them whether they still regarded the readers of such books as formidable opponents.

The Classicists and the Moderns

The literary tendency of this age was varied and could not be otherwise, for the age itself was divided between the old and the new modes. The same tendencies which came into conflict on the field of politics, the national-Italian tendency of the conservatives, the Helleno-Italian or, if the term be preferred, cosmopolitan tendency of the new monarchy, fought their battles also on the field of literature. The former attached itself to the older Latin literature, which in the theatre, in the school, and in erudite research assumed more and more the character of classical. With less taste and stronger party tendencies than the Scipionic epoch showed, Ennius, Pacuvius, and especially Plautus were now exalted to the skies. The leaves of the Sibyl rose in price, the fewer they became; the relatively greater nationality and relatively greater productiveness of the poets of the sixth century were never more vividly felt than in this epoch of thoroughly developed Epigonism, which in literature as decidedly as in politics looked up to the century of the Hannibalic warriors as to the golden age that had now unhappily passed away beyond recall. No doubt there was in this admiration of the old classics no small portion of the same hollowness and hypocrisy which are characteristic of the conservatism of this age in general; and here too there was no want of trimmers. Cicero for instance, although in prose one of the chief representatives of the modern tendency, revered nevertheless the older national poetry nearly with the same antiquarian respect which he paid to the aristocratic constitution and the augural discipline; "patriotism requires," we find him saying, "that we should rather read a notoriously wretched translation of Sophocles than the original." While thus the modern literary tendency cognate to the democratic monarchy numbered secret adherents enough even among the orthodox admirers of Ennius, there were not wanting already bolder judges, who treated the native literature as disrespectfully as the senatorial politics. Not only did they resume the strict criticism of the Scipionic epoch and set store by Terence only in order to condemn Ennius and still more the Ennianists, but the younger and bolder men went much farther and ventured already—though only as yet in heretical revolt against literary orthodoxy—to call Plautus a rude jester and Lucilius a bad verse-smith. This modern tendency attached itself not to the native authorship, but rather to the more recent Greek literature or the so-called Alexandrinism.

The Greek Alexandrinism

We cannot avoid saying at least so much respecting this remarkable winter-garden of Hellenic language and art, as is requisite for the understanding of the Roman literature of this and the later epochs. The Alexandrian literature was based on the decline of the pure Hellenic idiom, which from the time of Alexander the Great was superseded in daily life by an inferior jargon deriving its origin from the contact of the Macedonian dialect with various Greek and barbarian tribes; or, to speak more accurately, the Alexandrian literature sprang out of the ruin of the Hellenic nation generally, which had to perish, and did perish, in its national individuality in order to establish the universal monarchy of Alexander and the empire of Hellenism. Had Alexander's universal empire continued to subsist, the former national and popular literature would have been succeeded by a cosmopolitan literature Hellenic merely in name, essentially denationalized and called into life in a certain measure by royal patronage, but at all events ruling the world; but, as the state of Alexander was unhinged by his death, the germs of the literature corresponding to it rapidly perished. Nevertheless the Greek nation with all that it had possessed— with its nationality, its language, its art—belonged to the past. It was only in a comparatively narrow circle not of men of culture— for such, strictly speaking, no longer existed—but of men of erudition that the Greek literature was still cherished even when dead; that the rich inheritance which it had left was inventoried with melancholy pleasure or arid refinement of research; and that, possibly, the living sense of sympathy or the dead erudition was elevated into a semblance of productiveness. This posthumous productiveness constitutes the so-called Alexandrinism. It is essentially similar to that literature of scholars, which, keeping aloof from the living Romanic nationalities and their vulgar idioms, grew up during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries among a cosmopolitan circle of erudite philologues—as an artificial aftergrowth of the departed antiquity; the contrast between the classical and the vulgar Greek of the period of the Diadochi is doubtless less strongly marked, but is not, properly speaking, different from that between the Latin of Manutius and the Italian of Macchiavelli.

The Roman Alexandrinism

Italy had hitherto been in the main disinclined towards Alexandrinism. Its season of comparative brilliance was the period shortly before and after the first Punic war; yet Naevius, Ennius, Pacuvius and generally the whole body of the national Roman authors down to Varro and Lucretius in all branches of poetical production, not excepting even the didactic poem, attached themselves, not to their Greek contemporaries or very recent predecessors, but without exception to Homer, Euripides, Menander and the other masters of the living and national Greek literature. Roman literature was never fresh and national; but, as long as there was a Roman people, its authors instinctively sought for living and national models, and copied, if not always to the best purpose or the best authors, at least such as were original. The Greek literature originating after Aexander found its first Roman imitators—for the slight initial attempts from the Marian age(7) can scarcely be taken into account—among the contemporaries of Cicero and Caesar; and now the Roman Alexandrinism spread with singular rapidity. In part this arose from external causes. The increased contact with the Greeks, especially the frequent journeys of the Romans into the Hellenic provinces and the assemblage of Greek literati in Rome, naturally procured a public even among the Italians for the Greek literature of the day, for the epic and elegiac poetry, epigrams, and Milesian tales current at that time in Greece. Moreover, as we have already stated(8) the Alexandrian poetry had its established place in the instruction of the Italian youth; and thus reacted on Latin literature all the more, since the latter continued to be essentially dependent at all times on the Hellenic school-training. We find in this respect even a direct connection of the new Roman with the new Greek literature; the already-mentioned Parthenius, one of the better known Alexandrian elegists, opened, apparently about 700, a school for literature and poetry in Rome, and the excerpts are still extant in which he supplied one of his pupils of rank with materials for Latin elegies of an erotic and mythological nature according to the well-known Alexandrian receipt. But it was by no means simply such accidental occasions which called into existence the Roman Alexandrinism; it was on the contrary a product—perhaps not pleasing, but thoroughly inevitable— of the political and national development of Rome. On the one hand, as Hellas resolved itself into Hellenism, so now Latium resolved itself into Romanism; the national development of Italy outgrew itself, and was merged in Caesar's Mediterranean empire, just as the Hellenic development in the eastern empire of Alexander. On the other hand, as the new empire rested on the fact that the mighty streams of Greek and Latin nationality, after having flowed in parallel channels for many centuries, now at length coalesced, the Italian literature had not merely as hitherto to seek its groundwork generally in the Greek, but had also to put itself on a level with the Greek literature of the present, or in other words with Alexandrinism. With the scholastic Latin, with the closed number of classics, with the exclusive circle of classic-reading -urbani-, the national Latin literature was dead and at an end; there arose instead of it a thoroughly degenerate, artificially fostered, imperial literature, which did not rest on any definite nationality, but proclaimed in two languages the universal gospel of humanity, and was dependent in point of spirit throughout and consciously on the old Hellenic, in point of language partly on this, partly on the old Roman popular, literature. This was no improvement. The Mediterranean monarchy of Caesar was doubtless a grand and— what is more—a necessary creation; but it had been called into life by an arbitrary superior will, and therefore there was nothing to be found in it of the fresh popular life, of the overflowing national vigour, which are characteristic of younger, more limited, and more natural commonwealths, and which the Italian state of the sixth century had still been able to exhibit. The ruin of the Italian nationality, accomplished in the creation of Caesar, nipped the promise of literature. Every one who has any sense of the close affinity between art and nationality will always turn back from Cicero and Horace to Cato and Lucretius; and nothing but the schoolmaster's view of history and of literature— which has acquired, it is true, in this department the sanction of prescription—could have called the epoch of art beginning with the new monarchy pre-eminently the golden age. But while the Romano-Hellenic Alexandrinism of the age of Caesar and Augustus must be deemed inferior to the older, however imperfect, national literature, it is on the other hand as decidedly superior to the Alexandrinism of the age of the Diadochi as Caesar's enduring structure to the ephemeral creation of Alexander. We shall have afterwards to show that the Augustan literature, compared with the kindred literature of the period of the Diadochi, was far less a literature of philologues and far more an imperial literature than the latter, and therefore had a far more permanent and far more general influence in the upper circles of society than the Greek Alexandrinism ever had.

Dramatic Literature
Tragedy and Comedy Disappear

Nowhere was the prospect more lamentable than in dramatic literature. Tragedy and comedy had already before the present epoch become inwardly extinct in the Roman national literature. New pieces were no longer performed. That the public still in the Sullan age expected to see such, appears from the reproductions— belonging to this epoch—of Plautine comedies with the titles and names of the persons altered, with reference to which the managers well added that it was better to see a good old piece than a bad new one. From this the step was not great to that entire surrender of the stage to the dead poets, which we find in the Ciceronian age, and to which Alexandrinism made no opposition. Its productiveness in this department was worse than none. Real dramatic composition the Alexandrian literature never knew; nothing but the spurious drama, which was written primarily for reading and not for exhibition, could be introduced by it into Italy, and soon accordingly these dramatic iambics began to be quite as prevalent in Rome as in Alexandria, and the writing of tragedy in particular began to figure among the regular diseases of adolescence. We may form a pretty accurate idea of the quality of these productions from the fact that Quintus Cicero, in order homoeopathically to beguile the weariness of winter quarters in Gaul, composed four tragedies in sixteen days.

The Mime

In the "picture of life" or mime alone the last still vigorous product of the national literature, the Atellan farce, became engrafted with the ethological offshoots of Greek comedy, which Alexandrinism cultivated with greater poetical vigour and better success than any other branch of poetry. The mime originated out of the dances in character to the flute, which had long been usual, and which were performed sometimes on other occasions, e. g. for the entertainment of the guests during dinner, but more especially in the pit of the theatre during the intervals between the acts. It was not difficult to form out of these dances—in which the aid of speech had doubtless long since been occasionally employed— by means of the introduction of a more organized plot and a regular dialogue little comedies, which were yet essentially distinguished from the earlier comedy and even from the farce by the facts, that the dance and the lasciviousness inseparable from such dancing continued in this case to play a chief part, and that the mime, as belonging properly not to the boards but to the pit, threw aside all ideal scenic effects, such as masks for the face and theatrical buskins, and—what was specially important—admitted of the female characters being represented by women. This new mime, which first seems to have come on the stage of the capital about 672, soon swallowed up the national harlequinade, with which it indeed in the most essential respects coincided, and was employed as the usual interlude and especially as afterpiece along with the other dramatic performances.(9) The plot was of course still more indifferent, loose, and absurd than in the harlequinade; if it was only sufficiently chequered, the public did not ask why it laughed, and did not remonstrate with the poet, who instead of untying the knot cut it to pieces. The subjects were chiefly of an amorous nature, mostly of the licentious sort; for example, poet and public without exception took part against the husband, and poetical justice consisted in the derision of good morals. The artistic charm depended wholly, as in the Atellana, on the portraiture of the manners of common and low life; in which rural pictures are laid aside for those of the life and doings of the capital, and the sweet rabble of Rome— just as in the similar Greek pieces the rabble of Alexandria— is summoned to applaud its own likeness. Many subjects are taken from the life of tradesmen; there appear the— here also inevitable—"Fuller," then the "Ropemaker," the "Dyer," the "Salt-man," the "Female Weavers," the "Rascal"; other pieces give sketches of character, as the "Forgetful," the "Braggart," the "Man of 100,000 sesterces";(10) or pictures of other lands, the "Etruscan Woman," the "Gauls," the "Cretan," "Alexandria"; or descriptions of popular festivals, as the "Compitalia," the "Saturnalia," "Anna Perenna," the "Hot Baths"; or parodies of mythology, as the "Voyage to the Underworld," the "Arvernian Lake." Apt nicknames and short commonplaces which were easily retained and applied were welcome; but every piece of nonsense was of itself privileged; in this preposterous world Bacchus is applied to for water and the fountain-nymph for wine. Isolated examples even of the political allusions formerly so strictly prohibited in the Roman theatre are found in these mimes.(11) As regards metrical form, these poets gave themselves, as they tell us, "but moderate trouble with the versification"; the language abounded, even in the pieces prepared for publication, with vulgar expressions and low newly-coined words. The mime was, it is plain, in substance nothing but the former farce; with this exception, that the character-masks and the standing scenery of Atella as well as the rustic impress are dropped, and in their room the life of the capital in its boundless liberty and licence is brought on the stage. Most pieces of this sort were doubtless of a very fugitive nature and made no pretension to a place in literature; but the mimes of Laberius, full of pungent delineation of character and in point of language and metre exhibiting the hand of a master, maintained their ground in it; and even the historian must regret that we are no longer permitted to compare the drama of the republican death-struggle in Rome with its great Attic counterpart.

Dramatic Spectacles

With the worthlessness of dramatic literature the increase of scenic spectacles and of scenic pomp went hand in hand. Dramatic representations obtained their regular place in the public life not only of the capital but also of the country towns; the former also now at length acquired by means of Pompeius a permanent theatre (699;(12)), and the Campanian custom of stretching canvas over the theatre for the protection of the actors and spectators during the performance, which in ancient times always took place in the open air, now likewise found admission to Rome (676). As at that time in Greece it was not the—more than pale-Pleiad of the Alexandrian dramatists, but the classic drama, above all the tragedies of Euripides, which amidst the amplest development of scenic resources kept the stage, so in Rome at the time of Cicero the tragedies of Ennius, Pacuvius, and Accius, and the comedies of Plautus were those chiefly produced. While the latter had been in the previous period supplanted by the more tasteful but in point of comic vigour far inferior Terence, Roscius and Varro, or in other words the theatre and philology, co-operated to procure for him a resurrection similar to that which Shakespeare experienced at the hands of Garrick and Johnson; but even Plautus had to suffer from the degenerate susceptibility and the impatient haste of an audience spoilt by the short and slovenly farces, so that the managers found themselves compelled to excuse the length of the Plautine comedies and even perhaps to make omissions and alterations. The more limited the stock of plays, the more the activity of the managing and executive staff as well as the interest of the public was directed to the scenic representation of the pieces. There was hardly any more lucrative trade in Rome than that of the actor and the dancing-girl of the first rank. The princely estate of the tragic actor Aesopus has been already mentioned;(13) his still more celebrated contemporary Roscius(14) estimated his annual income at 600,000 sesterces (6000 pounds)(15) and Dionysia the dancer estimated hers at 200,000 sesterces (2000 pounds). At the same time immense sums were expended on decorations and costume; now and then trains of six hundred mules in harness crossed the stage, and the Trojan theatrical army was employed to present to the public a tableau of the nations vanquished by Pompeius in Asia. The music which accompanied the delivery of the inserted choruses likewise obtained a greater and more independent importance; as the wind sways the waves, says Varro, so the skilful flute-player sways the minds of the listeners with every modulation of melody. It accustomed itself to the use of quicker time, and thereby compelled the player to more lively action. Musical and dramatic connoisseurship was developed; the -habitue- recognized every tune by the first note, and knew the texts by heart; every fault in the music or recitation was severely censured by the audience. The state of the Roman stage in the time of Cicero vividly reminds us of the modern French theatre. As the Roman mime corresponds to the loose tableaux of the pieces of the day, nothing being too good and nothing too bad for either the one or the other, so we find in both the same traditionally classic tragedy and comedy, which the man of culture is in duty bound to admire or at least to applaud. The multitude is satisfied, when it meets its own reflection in the farce, and admires the decorative pomp and receives the general impression of an ideal world in the drama; the man of higher culture concerns himself at the theatre not with the piece, but only with its artistic representation. Moreover the Roman histrionic art oscillated in its different spheres, just like the French, between the cottage and the drawing-room. It was nothing unusual for the Roman dancing-girls to throw off at the finale the upper robe and to give a dance in undress for the benefit of the public; but on the other hand in the eyes of the Roman Talma the supreme law of his art was, not the truth of nature, but symmetry.

Metrical Annals

In recitative poetry metrical annals after the model of those of Ennius seem not to have been wanting; but they were perhaps sufficiently criticised by that graceful vow of his mistress of which Catullus sings—that the worst of the bad heroic poems should be presented as a sacrifice to holy Venus, if she would only bring back her lover from his vile political poetry to her arms.


Indeed in the whole field of recitative poetry at this epoch the older national-Roman tendency is represented only by a single work of note, which, however, is altogether one of the most important poetical products of Roman literature. It is the didactic poem of Titus Lucretius Carus (655-699) "Concerning the Nature of Things," whose author, belonging to the best circles of Roman society, but taking no part in public life whether from weakness of health or from disinclination, died in the prime of manhood shortly before the outbreak of the civil war. As a poet he attached himself decidedly to Ennius and thereby to the classical Greek literature. Indignantly he turns away from the "hollow Hellenism" of his time, and professes himself with his whole soul and heart to be the scholar of the "chaste Greeks," as indeed even the sacred earnestness of Thucydides has found no unworthy echo in one of the best-known sections of this Roman poem. As Ennius draws his wisdom from Epicharmus and Euhemerus, so Lucretius borrows the form of his representation from Empedocles, "the most glorious treasure of the richly gifted Sicilian isle"; and, as to the matter, gathers "all the golden words together from the rolls of Epicurus," "who outshines other wise men as the sun obscures the stars." Like Ennius, Lucretius disdains the mythological lore with which poetry was overloaded by Alexandrinism, and requires nothing from his reader but a knowledge of the legends generally current.(16) In spite of the modern purism which rejected foreign words from poetry, Lucretius prefers to use, as Ennius had done, a significant Greek word in place of a feeble and obscure Latin one. The old Roman alliteration, the want of due correspondence between the pauses of the verse and those of the sentence, and generally the older modes of expression and composition, are still frequently found in Lucretius' rhythms, and although he handles the verse more melodiously than Ennius, his hexameters move not, as those of the modern poetical school, with a lively grace like the rippling brook, but with a stately slowness like the stream of liquid gold. Philosophically and practically also Lucretius leans throughout on Ennius, the only indigenous poet whom his poem celebrates. The confession of faith of the singer of Rudiae(17)—

 -Ego deum genus esse semper dixi et dicam caelitum,
 Sed eos non curare opinor, quid agat humanum genus-:—

describes completely the religious standpoint of Lucretius, and not unjustly for that reason he himself terms his poem as it were the continuation of Ennius:—

 -Ennius ut noster cecinit, qui primus amoeno
 Detulit ex Helicone perenni fronde coronam,
 Per gentis Italas hominum quae clara clueret-.

Once more—and for the last time—the poem of Lucretius is resonant with the whole poetic pride and the whole poetic earnestness of the sixth century, in which, amidst the images of the formidable Carthaginian and the glorious Scipiad, the imagination of the poet is more at home than in his own degenerate age.(18) To him too his own song "gracefully welling up out of rich feeling" sounds, as compared with the common poems, "like the brief song of the swan compared with the cry of the crane";—with him too the heart swells, listening to the melodies of its own invention, with the hope of illustrious honours—just as Ennius forbids the men to whom he "gave from the depth of the heart a foretaste of fiery song," to mourn at his, the immortal singer's, tomb.

It is a remarkable fatality, that this man of extraordinary talents, far superior in originality of poetic endowments to most if not to all his contemporaries, fell upon an age in which he felt himself strange and forlorn, and in consequence of this made the most singular mistake in the selection of a subject. The system of Epicurus, which converts the universe into a great vortex of atoms and undertakes to explain the origin and end of the world as well as all the problems of nature and of life in a purely mechanical way, was doubtless somewhat less silly than the conversion of myths into history which was attempted by Euhemerus and after him by Ennius; but it was not an ingenious or a fresh system, and the task of poetically unfolding this mechanical view of the world was of such a nature that never probably did poet expend life and art on a more ungrateful theme. The philosophic reader censures in the Lucretian didactic poem the omission of the finer points of the system, the superficiality especially with which controversies are presented, the defective division, the frequent repetitions, with quite as good reason as the poetical reader frets at the mathematics put into rhythm which makes a great part of the poem absolutely unreadable. In spite of these incredible defects, before which every man of mediocre talent must inevitably have succumbed, this poet might justly boast of having carried off from the poetic wilderness a new chaplet such as the Muses had not yet bestowed on any; and it was by no means merely the occasional similitudes, and the other inserted descriptions of mighty natural phenomena and yet mightier passions, which acquired for the poet this chaplet. The genius which marks the view of life as well as the poetry of Lucretius depends on his unbelief, which came forward and was entitled to come forward with the full victorious power of truth, and therefore with the full vigour of poetry, in opposition to the prevailing hypocrisy or superstition.

 -Humana ante oculos foede cum vita iaceret
 In terris oppressa gravi sub religione,
 Quae caput a caeli regionibus ostendebat
 Horribili super aspectu mortalibus instans,
 Primum Graius homo mortalis tendere contra
 Est oculos ausus primusque obsistere contra.
 Ergo vivida vis animi pervicit, et extra
 Processit longe flammantia moenia mundi
 Atque omne immensum peragravit mente animoque-.

The poet accordingly was zealous to overthrow the gods, as Brutus had overthrown the kings, and "to release nature from her stern lords." But it was not against the long ago enfeebled throne of Jovis that these flaming words were hurled; just like Ennius, Lucretius fights practically above all things against the wild foreign faiths and superstitions of, the multitude, the worship of the Great Mother for instance and the childish lightning-lore of the Etruscans. Horror and antipathy towards that terrible world in general, in which and for which the poet wrote, suggested his poem. It was composed in that hopeless time when the rule of the oligarchy had been overthrown and that of Caesar had not yet been established, in the sultry years during which the outbreak of the civil war was awaited with long and painful suspense. If we seem to perceive in its unequal and restless utterance that the poet daily expected to see the wild tumult of revolution break forth over himself and his work, we must not with reference to his view of men and things forget amidst what men, and in prospect of what things, that view had its origin. In the Hellas of the epoch before Alexander it was a current saying, and one profoundly felt by all the best men, that the best thing of all was not to be born, and the next best to die. Of all views of the world possible to a tender and poetically organized mind in the kindred Caesarian age this was the noblest and the most ennobling, that it is a benefit for man to be released from a belief in the immortality of the soul and thereby from the evil dread of death and of the gods which malignantly steals over men like terror creeping over children in a dark room; that, as the sleep of the night is more refreshing than the trouble of the day, so death, eternal repose from all hope and fear, is better than life, as indeed the gods of the poet themselves are nothing, and have nothing, but an eternal blessed rest; that the pains of hell torment man, not after life, but during its course, in the wild and unruly passions of his throbbing heart; that the task of man is to attune his soul to equanimity, to esteem the purple no higher than the warm dress worn at home, rather to remain in the ranks of those that obey than to press into the confused crowd of candidates for the office of ruler, rather to lie on the grass beside the brook than to take part under the golden ceiling of the rich in emptying his countless dishes. This philosophico-practical tendency is the true ideal essence of the Lucretian poem and is only overlaid, not choked, by all the dreariness of its physical demonstrations. Essentially on this rests its comparative wisdom and truth. The man who with a reverence for his great predecessors and a vehement zeal, to which this century elsewhere knew no parallel, preached such doctrine and embellished it with the charm of art, may be termed at once a good citizen and a great poet. The didactic poem concerning the Nature of Things, however much in it may challenge censure, has remained one of the most brilliant stars in the poorly illuminated expanse of Roman literature; and with reason the greatest of German philologues chose the task of making the Lucretian poem once more readable as his last and most masterly work.

The Hellenic Fashionable Poetry

Lucretius, although his poetical vigour as well as his art was admired by his cultivated contemporaries, yet remained—of late growth as he was—a master without scholars. In the Hellenic fashionable poetry on the other hand there was no lack at least of scholars, who exerted themselves to emulate the Alexandrian masters. With true tact the more gifted of the Alexandrian poets avoided larger works and the pure forms of poetry—the drama, the epos, the lyric; the most pleasing and successful performances consisted with them, just as with the new Latin poets, in "short- winded" tasks, and especially in such as belonged to the domains bordering on the pure forms of art, more especially to the wide field intervening between narrative and song. Multifarious didactic poems were written. Small half-heroic, half-erotic epics were great favourites, and especially an erudite sort of love-elegy peculiar to this autumnal summer of Greek poetry and characteristic of the philological source whence it sprang, in which the poet more or less arbitrarily interwove the description of his own feelings, predominantly sensuous, with epic shreds from the cycle of Greek legend. Festal lays were diligently and artfully manufactured; in general, owing to the want of spontaneous poetical invention, the occasional poem preponderated and especially the epigram, of which the Alexandrians produced excellent specimens. The poverty of materials and the want of freshness in language and rhythm, which inevitably cleave to every literature not national, men sought as much as possible to conceal under odd themes, far-fetched phrases, rare words, and artificial versification, and generally under the whole apparatus of philologico-antiquarian erudition and technical dexterity. Such was the gospel which was preached to the Roman boys of this period, and they came in crowds to hear and to practise it; already (about 700) the love-poems of Euphorion and similar Alexandrian poetry formed the ordinary reading and the ordinary pieces for declamation of the cultivated youth.(19) The literary revolution took place; but it yielded in the first instance with rare exceptions only premature or unripe fruits. The number of the "new-fashioned poets" was legion, but poetry was rare and Apollo was compelled, as always when so many throng towards Parnassus, to make very short work. The long poems never were worth anything, the short ones seldom. Even in this literary age the poetry of the day had become a public nuisance; it sometimes happened that one's friend would send home to him by way of mockery as a festal present a pile of trashy verses fresh from the bookseller's shop, whose value was at once betrayed by the elegant binding and the smooth paper. A real public, in the sense in which national literature has a public, was wanting to the Roman Alexandrians as well as to the Hellenic; it was thoroughly the poetry of a clique or rather cliques, whose members clung closely together, abused intruders, read and criticised among themselves the new poems, sometimes also quite after the Alexandrian fashion celebrated the successful productions in fresh verses, and variously sought to secure for themselves by clique-praises a spurious and ephemeral renown. A notable teacher of Latin literature, himself poetically active in this new direction, Valerius Cato appears to have exercised a sort of scholastic patronage over the most distinguished men of this circle and to have pronounced final decision on the relative value of the poems. As compared with their Greek models, these Roman poets evince throughout a want of freedom, sometimes a schoolboy dependence; most of their products must have been simply the austere fruits of a school poetry still occupied in learning and by no means yet dismissed as mature. Inasmuch as in language and in measure they adhered to the Greek patterns far more closely than ever the national Latin poetry had done, a greater correctness and consistency in language and metre were certainly attained; but it was at the expense of the flexibility and fulness of the national idiom. As respects the subject-matter, under the influence partly of effeminate models, partly of an immoral age, amatory themes acquired a surprising preponderance little conducive to poetry; but the favourite metrical compendia of the Greeks were also in various cases translated, such as the astronomical treatise of Aratus by Cicero, and, either at the end of this or more probably at the commencement of the following period, the geographical manual of Eratosthenes by Publius Varro of the Aude and the physico-medicinal manual of Nicander by Aemilius Macer. It is neither to be wondered at nor regretted that of this countless host of poets but few names have been preserved to us; and even these are mostly mentioned merely as curiosities or as once upon a time great; such as the orator Quintus Hortensius with his "five hundred thousand lines" of tiresome obscenity, and the somewhat more frequently mentioned Laevius, whose -Erotopaegnia- attracted a certain interest only by their complicated measures and affected phraseology. Even the small epic Smyrna by Gaius Helvius Cinna (d. 710?), much as it was praised by the clique, bears both in its subject—the incestuous love of a daughter for her father—and in the nine years' toil bestowed on it the worst characteristics of the time.


Those poets alone of this school constitute an original and pleasing exception, who knew how to combine with its neatness and its versatility of form the national elements of worth still existing in the republican life, especially in that of the country-towns. To say nothing here of Laberius and Varro, this description applies especially to the three poets already mentioned above(20) of the republican opposition, Marcus Furius Libaculus (652-691), Gaius Licinius Calvus (672-706) and Quintus Valerius Catullus (667-c. 700). Of the two former, whose writings have perished, we can indeed only conjecture this; respecting the poems of Catullus we can still form a judgment. He too depends in subject and form on the Alexandrians. We find in his collection translations of pieces of Callimachus, and these not altogether the very good, but the very difficult. Among the original pieces, we meet with elaborately-turned fashionable poems, such as the over-artificial Galliambics in praise of the Phrygian Mother; and even the poem, otherwise so beautiful, of the marriage of Thetis has been artistically spoiled by the truly Alexandrian insertion of the complaint of Ariadne in the principal poem. But by the side of these school-pieces we meet with the melodious lament of the genuine elegy, the festal poem in the full pomp of individual and almost dramatic execution, above all, the freshest miniature painting of cultivated social life, the pleasant and very unreserved amatory adventures of which half the charm consists in prattling and poetizing about the mysteries of love, the delightful life of youth with full cups and empty purses, the pleasures of travel and of poetry, the Roman and still more frequently the Veronese anecdote of the town, and the humorous jest amidst the familiar circle of friends. But not only does Apollo touch the lyre of the poet, he wields also the bow; the winged dart of sarcasm spares neither the tedious verse-maker nor the provincial who corrupts the language, but it hits none more frequently and more sharply than the potentates by whom the liberty of the people is endangered. The short-lined and merry metres, often enlivened by a graceful refrain, are of finished art and yet free from the repulsive smoothness of the manufactory. These poems lead us alternately to the valleys of the Nile and the Po; but the poet is incomparably more at home in the latter. His poems are based on Alexandrian art doubtless, but at the same time on the self- consciousness of a burgess and a burgess in fact of a rural town, on the contrast of Verona with Rome, on the contrast of the homely municipal with the high-born lords of the senate who usually maltreat their humble friends—as that contrast was probably felt more vividly than anywhere else in Catullus' home, the flourishing and comparatively vigorous Cisalpine Gaul. The most beautiful of his poems reflect the sweet pictures of the Lago di Garda, and hardly at this time could any man of the capital have written a poem like the deeply pathetic one on his brother's death, or the excellent genuinely homely festal hymn for the marriage of Manlius and Aurunculeia. Catullus, although dependent on the Alexandrian masters and standing in the midst of the fashionable and clique poetry of that age, was yet not merely a good scholar among many mediocre and bad ones, but himself as much superior to his masters as the burgess of a free Italian community was superior to the cosmopolitan Hellenic man of letters. Eminent creative vigour indeed and high poetic intentions we may not look for in him; he is a richly gifted and graceful but not a great poet, and his poems are, as he himself calls them, nothing but "pleasantries and trifles." Yet when we find not merely his contemporaries electrified by these fugitive songs, but the art-critics of the Augustan age also characterizing him along with Lucretius as the most important poet of this epoch, his contemporaries as well as their successors were completely right. The Latin nation has produced no second poet in whom the artistic substance and the artistic form appear in so symmetrical perfection as in Catullus; and in this sense the collection of the poems of Catullus is certainly the most perfect which Latin poetry as a whole can show.

Poems in Prose

Lastly, poetry in a prose form begins in this epoch. The law of genuine naive as well as conscious art, which had hitherto remained unchangeable—that the poetical subject-matter and the metrical setting should go together—gave way before the intermixture and disturbance of all kinds and forms of art, which is one of the most significant features of this period. As to romances indeed nothing farther is to be noticed, than that the most famous historian of this epoch, Sisenna, did not esteem himself too good to translate into Latin the much-read Milesian tales of Aristides—licentious fashionable novels of the most stupid sort.

Varro's Aesthetic Writings

A more original and more pleasing phenomenon in this debateable border-land between poetry and prose was the aesthetic writings of Varro, who was not merely the most important representative of Latin philologico-historical research, but one of the most fertile and most interesting authors in belles-lettres. Descended from a plebeian gens which had its home in the Sabine land but had belonged for the last two hundred years to the Roman senate, strictly reared in antique discipline and decorum,(21) and already at the beginning of this epoch a man of maturity, Marcus Terentius Varro of Reate (638-727) belonged in politics, as a matter of course, to the institutional party, and bore an honourable and energetic part in its doings and sufferings. He supported it, partly in literature—as when he combated the first coalition, the "three-headed monster," in pamphlets; partly in more serious warfare, where we found him in the army of Pompeius as commandant of Further Spain.(22) When the cause of the republic was lost, Varro was destined by his conqueror to be librarian of the library which was to be formed in the capital. The troubles of the following period drew the old man once more into their vortex, and it was not till seventeen years after Caesar's death, in the eighty-ninth year of his well-occupied life, that death called him away.

Varros' Models

The aesthetic writings, which have made him a name, were brief essays, some in simple prose and of graver contents, others humorous sketches the prose groundwork of which was inlaid with various poetical effusions. The former were the "philosophico- historical dissertations" (-logistorici-), the latter the Menippean Satires. In neither case did he follow Latin models, and the -Satura- of Varro in particular was by no means based on that of Lucilius. In fact the Roman -Satura- in general was not properly a fixed species of art, but only indicated negatively the fact that the "multifarious poem" was not to be included under any of the recognized forms of art; and accordingly the -Satura- poetry assumed in the hands of every gifted poet a different and peculiar character. It was rather in the pre-Alexandrian Greek philosophy that Varro found the models for his more severe as well as for his lighter aesthetic works; for the graver dissertations, in the dialogues of Heraclides of Heraclea on the Black Sea (d. about 450), for the satires, in the writings of Menippus of Gadara in Syria (flourishing about 475). The choice was significant. Heraclides, stimulated as an author by Plato's philosophic dialogues, had amidst the brilliance of their form totally lost sight of the scientific contents and made the poetico-fabulistic dress the main matter; he was an agreeable and largely-read author, but far from a philosopher. Menippus was quite as little a philosopher, but the most genuine literary representative of that philosophy whose wisdom consisted in denying philosophy and ridiculing philosophers the cynical wisdom of Diogenes; a comic teacher of serious wisdom, he proved by examples and merry sayings that except an upright life everything is vain in earth and heaven, and nothing more vain than the disputes of so-called sages. These were the true models for Varro, a man full of old Roman indignation at the pitiful times and full of old Roman humour, by no means destitute withal of plastic talent but as to everything which presented the appearance not of palpable fact but of idea or even of system, utterly stupid, and perhaps the most unphilosophical among the unphilosophical Romans.(23) But Varro was no slavish pupil. The impulse and in general the form he derived from Heraclides and Menippus; but his was a nature too individual and too decidedly Roman not to keep his imitative creations essentially independent and national.

Varro's Philosophico-Historical Essays

For his grave dissertations, in which a moral maxim or other subject of general interest is handled, he disdained, in his framework to approximate to the Milesian tales, as Heraclides had done, and so to serve up to the reader even childish little stories like those of Abaris and of the maiden reawakened to life after being seven days dead. But seldom he borrowed the dress from the nobler myths of the Greeks, as in the essay "Orestes or concerning Madness"; history ordinarily afforded him a worthier frame for his subjects, more especially the contemporary history of his country, so that these essays became, as they were called -laudationes- of esteemed Romans, above all of the Coryphaei of the constitutional party. Thus the dissertation "concerning Peace" was at the same time a memorial of Metellus Pius, the last in the brilliant series of successful generals of the senate; that "concerning the Worship of the Gods" was at the same time destined to preserve the memory of the highly-respected Optimate and Pontifex Gaius Curio; the essay "on Fate" was connected with Marius, that "on the Writing of History" with Sisenna the first historian of this epoch, that "on the Beginnings of the Roman Stage" with the princely giver of scenic spectacles Scaurus, that "on Numbers" with the highly-cultured Roman banker Atticus. The two philosophico-historical essays "Laelius or concerning Friendship," "Cato or concerning Old Age," which Cicero wrote probably after the model of those of Varro, may give us some approximate idea of Varro's half-didactic, half-narrative, treatment of these subjects.

Varros' Menippean Satires

The Menippean satire was handled by Varro with equal originality of form and contents; the bold mixture of prose and verse is foreign to the Greek original, and the whole intellectual contents are pervaded by Roman idiosyncrasy—one might say, by a savour of the Sabine soil. These satires like the philosophico-historical essays handle some moral or other theme adapted to the larger public, as is shown by the several titles—-Columnae Herculis-, —peri doxeis—; —Euren ei Lopas to Poma, peri gegameikoton—, -Est Modus Matulae-, —peri metheis—; -Papiapapae-, —peri egkomios—. The plastic dress, which in this case might not be wanting, is of course but seldom borrowed from the history of his native country, as in the satire -Serranus-, —peri archairesion—. The Cynic- world of Diogenes on the other hand plays, as might be expected, a great part; we meet with the —Kounistor—, the —Kounorreiton—, the 'Ippokouon, the —'Oudrokouon—, the —Kounodidaskalikon— and others of a like kind. Mythology is also laid under contribution for comic purposes; we find a -Prometheus Liber-, an -Ajax Stramenticius-, a -Hercules Socraticus-, a -Sesqueulixes- who had spent not merely ten but fifteen years in wanderings. The outline of the dramatic or romantic framework is still discoverable from the fragments in some pieces, such as the -Prometheus Liber-, the -Sexagessis-, -Manius-; it appears that Varro frequently, perhaps regularly, narrated the tale as his own experience; e. g. in the -Manius- the dramatis personae go to Varro and discourse to him "because he was known to them as a maker of books." as to the poetical value of this dress we are no longer allowed to form any certain judgment; there still occur in our fragments several very charming sketches full of wit and liveliness— thus in the -Prometheus Liber- the hero after the loosing of his chains opens a manufactory of men, in which Goldshoe the rich (-Chrysosandalos-) bespeaks for himself a maiden, of milk and finest wax, such as the Milesian bees gather from various flowers, a maiden without bones and sinews, without skin or hair, pure and polished, slim, smooth, tender, charming. The life-breath of this poetry is polemics— not so much the political warfare of party, such as Lucilius and Catullus practised, but the general moral antagonism of the stern elderly man to the unbridled and perverse youth, of the scholar living in the midst of his classics to the loose and slovenly, or at any rate in point of tendency reprobate, modern poetry,(24) of the good burgess of the ancient type to the new Rome in which the Forum, to use Varro's language, was a pigsty and Numa, if he turned his eyes towards his city, would see no longer a trace of his wise regulations. In the constitutional struggle Varro did what seemed to him the duty of a citizen; but his heart was not in such party-doings— "why," he complains on one occasion, "do ye call me from my pure life into the filth of your senate-house?" He belonged to the good old time, when the talk savoured of onions and garlic, but the heart was sound. His polemic against the hereditary foes of the genuine Roman spirit, the Greek philosophers, was only a single aspect of this old-fashioned opposition to the spirit of the new times; but it resulted both from the nature of the Cynical philosophy and from the temperament of Varro, that the Menippean lash was very specially plied round the cars of the philosophers and put them accordingly into proportional alarm—it was not without palpitation that the philosophic scribes of the time transmitted to the "severe man" their newly-issued treatises. Philosophizing is truly no art. With the tenth part of the trouble with which a master rears his slave to be a professional baker, he trains himself to be a philosopher; no doubt, when the baker and the philosopher both come under the hammer, the artist of pastry goes off a hundred times dearer than the sage. Singular people, these philosophers! One enjoins that corpses be buried in honey— it is a fortunate circumstance that his desire is not complied with, otherwise where would any honey-wine be left? Another thinks that men grow out of the earth like cresses. A third has invented a world-borer (—Kosmotorounei—) by which the earth will some day be destroyed.

 -Postremo, nemo aegrotus quicquam somniat
 Tam infandum, quod non aliquis dicat philosophus-.

It is ludicrous to observe how a Long-beard—by which is meant an etymologizing Stoic—cautiously weighs every word in goldsmith's scales; but there is nothing that surpasses the genuine philosophers' quarrel—a Stoic boxing-match far excels any encounter of athletes. In the satire -Marcopolis-, —peri archeis—, when Marcus created for himself a Cloud-Cuckoo-Home after his own heart, matters fared, just as in the Attic comedy, well with the peasant, but ill with the philosopher; the -Celer- — -di'-enos- -leimmatos-logos—, son of Antipater the Stoic, beats in the skull of his opponent— evidently the philosophic -Dilemma—-with the mattock.

With this morally polemic tendency and this talent for embodying it in caustic and picturesque expression, which, as the dress of dialogue given to the books on Husbandry written in his eightieth year shows, never forsook him down to extreme old age, Varro most happily combined an incomparable knowledge of the national manners and language, which is embodied in the philological writings of his old age after the manner of a commonplace-book, but displays itself in his Satires in all its direct fulness and freshness. Varro was in the best and fullest sense of the term a local antiquarian, who from the personal observation of many years knew his nation in its former idiosyncrasy and seclusion as well as in its modern state of transition and dispersion, and had supplemented and deepened his direct knowledge of the national manners and national language by the most comprehensive research in historical and literary archives. His partial deficiency in rational judgment and learning— in our sense of the words—was compensated for by his clear intuition and the poetry which lived within him. He sought neither after antiquarian notices nor after rare antiquated or poetical words;(25) but he was himself an old and old-fashioned man and almost a rustic, the classics of his nation were his favourite and long-familiar companions; how could it fail that many details of the manners of his forefathers, which he loved above all and especially knew, should be narrated in his writings, and that his discourse should abound with proverbial Greek and Latin phrases, with good old words preserved in the Sabine conversational language, with reminiscences of Ennius, Lucilius, and above all of Plautus? We should not judge as to the prose style of these aesthetic writings of Varro's earlier period by the standard of his work on Language written in his old age and probably published in an unfinished state, in which certainly the clauses of the sentence are arranged on the thread of the relative like thrushes on a string; but we have already observed that Varro rejected on principle the effort after a chaste style and Attic periods, and his aesthetic essays, while destitute of the mean bombast and the spurious tinsel of vulgarism, were yet written after an unclassic and even slovenly fashion, in sentences rather directly joined on to each other than regularly subdivided. The poetical pieces inserted on the other hand show not merely that their author knew how to mould the most varied measures with as much mastery as any of the fashionable poets, but that he had a right to include himself among those to whom a god has granted the gift of "banishing cares from the heart by song and sacred poesy."(26) the sketches of Varro no more created a school than the didactic poem of Lucretius; to the more general causes which prevented this there falls to be added their thoroughly individual stamp, which was inseparable from the greater age, from the rusticity, and even from the peculiar erudition of their author. But the grace and humour of the Menippean satires above all, which seem to have been in number and importance far superior to Varro's graver works, captivated his contemporaries as well as those in after times who had any relish for originality and national spirit; and even we, who are no longer permitted to read them, may still from the fragments preserved discern in some measure that the writer "knew how to laugh and how to jest in moderation." And as the last breath of the good spirit of the old burgess-times ere it departed, as the latest fresh growth which the national Latin poetry put forth, the Satires of Varro deserved that the poet in his poetical testament should commend these his Menippean children to every one "who had at heart the prosperity of Rome and of Latium"; and they accordingly retain an honourable place in the literature as in the history of the Italian people.(27)

Historical Composition

The critical writing of history, after the manner in which the Attic authors wrote the national history in their classic period and in which Polybius wrote the history of the world, was never properly developed in Rome. Even in the field most adapted for it— the representation of contemporary and of recently past events— there was nothing, on the whole, but more or less inadequate attempts; in the epoch especially from Sulla to Caesar the not very important contributions, which the previous epoch had to show in this field— the labours of Antipater and Asellius—were barely even equalled. The only work of note belonging to this field, which arose in the present epoch, was the history of the Social and Civil Wars by Lucius Cornelius Sisenna (praetor in 676). Those who had read it testify that it far excelled in liveliness and readableness the old dry chronicles, but was written withal in a style thoroughly impure and even degenerating into puerility; as indeed the few remaining fragments exhibit a paltry painting of horrible details,(28) and a number of words newly coined or derived from the language of conversation. When it is added that the author's model and, so to speak, the only Greek historian familiar to him was Clitarchus, the author of a biography of Alexander the Great oscillating between history and fiction in the manner of the semi- romance which bears the name of Curtius, we shall not hesitate to recognize in Sisenna's celebrated historical work, not a product of genuine historical criticism and art, but the first Roman essay in that hybrid mixture of history and romance so much a favourite with the Greeks, which desires to make the groundwork of facts life-like and interesting by means of fictitious details and thereby makes it insipid and untrue; and it will no longer excite surprise that we meet with the same Sisenna also as translator of Greek fashionable romances.(29)

Annals of the City

That the prospect should be still more lamentable in the field of the general annals of the city and even of the world, was implied in the nature of the case. The increasing activity of antiquarian research induced the expectation that the current narrative would be rectified from documents and other trustworthy sources; but this hope was not fulfilled. The more and the deeper men investigated, the more clearly it became apparent what a task it was to write a critical history of Rome. The difficulties even, which opposed themselves to investigation and narration, were immense; but the most dangerous obstacles were not those of a literary kind. The conventional early history of Rome, as it had now been narrated and believed for at least ten generations; was most intimately mixed up with the civil life of the nation; and yet in any thorough and honest inquiry not only had details to be modified here and there, but the whole building had to be overturned as much as the Franconian primitive history of king Pharamund or the British of king Arthur. An inquirer of conservative views, such as was Varro for instance, could have no wish to put his hand to such a work; and if a daring freethinker had undertaken it, an outcry would have been raised by all good citizens against this worst of all revolutionaries, who was preparing to deprive the constitutional party even of their past Thus philological and antiquarian research deterred from the writing of history rather than conduced towards it. Varro and the more sagacious men in general evidently gave up the task of annals as hopeless; at the most they arranged, as did Titus Pomponius Atticus, the official and gentile lists in unpretending tabular shape—a work by which the synchronistic Graeco-Roman chronology was finally brought into the shape in which it was conventionally fixed for posterity. But the manufacture of city-chronicles of course did not suspend its activity; it continued to supply its contributions both in prose and verse to the great library written by ennui for ennui, while the makers of the books, in part already freedmen, did not trouble themselves at all about research properly so called. Such of these writings as are mentioned to us—not one of them is preserved—seem to have been not only of a wholly secondary character, but in great part even pervaded by interested falsification. It is true that the chronicle of Quintus Claudius Quadrigarius (about 676?) was written in an old-fashioned but good style, and studied at least a commendable brevity in the representation of the fabulous period. Gaius Licinius Macer (d. as late praetor in 688), father of the poet Calvus,(30) and a zealous democrat, laid claim more than any other chronicler to documentary research and criticism, but his -libri lintei- and other matters peculiar to him are in the highest degree suspicious, and an interpolation of the whole annals in the interest of democratic tendencies— an interpolation of a very extensive kind, and which has passed over in part to the later annalists—is probably traceable to him.

Valerius Antias

Lastly, Valerius Antias excelled all his predecessors in prolixity as well as in puerile story-telling. The falsification of numbers was here systematically carried out down even to contemporary history, and the primitive history of Rome was elaborated once more from one form of insipidity to another; for instance the narrative of the way in which the wise Numa according to the instructions of the nymph Egeria caught the gods Faunus and Picus; with wine, and the beautiful conversation thereupon held by the same Numa with the god Jupiter, cannot be too urgently recommended to all worshippers of the so-called legendary history of Rome in order that, if possible, they may believe these things—of course, in substance. It would have been a marvel if the Greek novel-writers of this period had allowed such materials, made as if for their use, to escape them. In fact there were not wanting Greek literati, who worked up the Roman history into romances; such a composition, for instance, was the Five Books "Concerning Rome" of the Alexander Polyhistor already mentioned among the Greek literati living in Rome,(31) a preposterous mixture of vapid historical tradition and trivial, principally erotic, fiction. He, it may be presumed, took the first steps towards filling up the five hundred years, which were wanting to bring the destruction of Troy and the origin of Rome into the chronological connection required by the fables on either side, with one of those lists of kings without achievements which are unhappily familiar to the Egyptian and Greek chroniclers; for, to all appearance, it was he that launched into the world the kings Aventinus and Tiberinus and the Alban gens of the Silvii, whom the following times accordingly did not neglect to furnish in detail with name, period of reigning, and, for the sake of greater definiteness, also a portrait.

Thus from various sides the historical romance of the Greeks finds its way into Roman historiography; and it is more than probable that not the least portion of what we are accustomed nowadays to call tradition of the Roman primitive times proceeds from sources of the stamp of Amadis of Gaul and the chivalrous romances of Fouque—an edifying consideration, at least for those who have a relish for the humour of history and who know how to appreciate the comical aspect of the piety still cherished in certain circles of the nineteenth century for king Numa.

Universal History

A novelty in the Roman literature of this period is the appearance of universal history or, to speak more correctly, of Roman and Greek history conjoined, alongside of the native annals. Cornelius Nepos from Ticinum (c. 650-c. 725) first supplied an universal chronicle (published before 700) and a general collection of biographies—arranged according to certain categories—of Romans and Greeks distinguished in politics or literature or of men at any rate who exercised influence on the Roman or Greek history. These works are of a kindred nature with the universal histories which the Greeks had for a considerable time been composing; and these very Greek world-chronicles, such as that of Kastor son-in-law of the Galatian king Deiotarus, concluded in 698, now began to include in their range the Roman history which previously they had neglected. These works certainly attempted, just like Polybius, to substitute the history of the Mediterranean world for the more local one; but that which in Polybius was the result of a grand and clear conception and deep historical feeling was in these chronicles rather the product of the practical exigencies of school and self-instruction. These general chronicles, text-books for scholastic instruction or manuals for reference, and the whole literature therewith connected which subsequently became very copious in the Latin language also, can hardly be reckoned as belonging to artistic historical composition; and Nepos himself in particular was a pure compiler distinguished neither by spirit nor even merely by symmetrical plan.

The historiography of this period is certainly remarkable and in a high degree characteristic, but it is as far from pleasing as the age itself. The interpenetration of Greek and Latin literature is in no field so clearly apparent as in that of history; here the respective literatures become earliest equalized in matter and form, and the conception of Helleno-Italic history as an unity, in which Polybius was so far in advance of his age, was now learned even by Greek and Roman boys at school. But while the Mediterranean state had found a historian before it had become conscious of its own existence, now, when that consciousness had been attained, there did not arise either among the Greeks or among the Romans any man who was able to give to it adequate expression. "There is no such thing," says Cicero, "as Roman historical composition"; and, so far as we can judge, this is no more than the simple truth. The man of research turns away from writing history, the writer of history turns away from research; historical literature oscillates between the schoolbook and the romance. All the species of pure art—epos, drama, lyric poetry, history—are worthless in this worthless world; but in no species is the intellectual decay of the Ciceronian age reflected with so terrible a clearness as in its historiography.

Literature Subsidiary to History
Caesar's Report

The minor historical literature of this period displays on the other hand, amidst many insignificant and forgotten productions, one treatise of the first rank—the Memoirs of Caesar, or rather the Military Report of the democratic general to the people from whom he had received his commission. The finished section, and that which alone was published by the author himself, describing the Celtic campaigns down to 702, is evidently designed to justify as well as possible before the public the formally unconstitutional enterprise of Caesar in conquering a great country and constantly increasing his army for that object without instructions from the competent authority; it was written and given forth in 703, when the storm broke out against Caesar in Rome and he was summoned to dismiss his army and answer for his conduct.(32) The author of this vindication writes, as he himself says, entirely as an officer and carefully avoids extending his military report to the hazardous departments of political organization and administration. His incidental and partisan treatise cast in the form of a military report is itself a piece of history like the bulletins of Napoleon, but it is not, and was not intended to be, a historical work in the true sense of the word; the objective form which the narrative assumes is that of the magistrate, not that of the historian. But in this modest character the work is masterly and finished, more than any other in all Roman literature. The narrative is always terse and never scanty, always simple and never careless, always of transparent vividness and never strained or affected. The language is completely pure from archaisms and from vulgarisms— the type of the modern -urbanitas-. In the Books concerning the Civil War we seem to feel that the author had desired to avoid war and could not avoid it, and perhaps also that in Caesar's soul, as in every other, the period of hope was a purer and fresher one than that of fulfilment; but over the treatise on the Gallic war there is diffused a bright serenity, a simple charm, which are no less unique in literature than Caesar is in history.


Of a kindred nature were the letters interchanged between the statesmen and literati of this period, which were carefully collected and published in the following epoch; such as the correspondence of Caesar himself, of Cicero, Calvus and others. They can still less be numbered among strictly literary performances; but this literature of correspondence was a rich store-house for historical as for all other research, and the most faithful mirror of an epoch in which so much of the worth of past times and so much spirit, cleverness, and talent were evaporated and dissipated in trifling.


A journalist literature in the modern sense was never formed in Rome; literary warfare continued to be confined to the writing of pamphlets and, along with this, to the custom generally diffused at that time of annotating the notices destined for the public in places of resort with the pencil or the pen. On the other hand subordinate persons were employed to note down the events of the day and news of the city for the absent men of quality; and Caesar as early as his first consulship took fitting measures for the immediate publication of an extract from the transactions of the senate. From the private journals of those Roman penny-a-liners and these official current reports there arose a sort of news-sheet for the capital (-acta diurna-), in which the resume of the business discussed before the people and in the senate, and births, deaths, and such like were recorded. This became a not unimportant source for history, but remained without proper political as without literary significance.

Decline of Political Oratory

To subsidiary historical literature belongs of right also the composition of orations. The speech, whether written down or not, is in its nature ephemeral and does not belong to literature; but it may, like the report and the letter, and indeed still more readily than these, come to be included, through the significance of the moment and the power of the mind from which it springs, among the permanent treasures of the national literature. Thus in Rome the records of orations of a political tenor delivered before the burgesses or the jurymen had for long played a great part in public life; and not only so, but the speeches of Gaius Gracchus in particular were justly reckoned among the classical Roman writings. But in this epoch a singular change occurred on all hands. The composition of political speeches was on the decline like political speaking itself. The political speech in Rome, as generally in the ancient polities, reached its culminating point in the discussions before the burgesses; here the orator was not fettered, as in the senate, by collegiate considerations and burdensome forms, nor, as in the judicial addresses, by the interests—in themselves foreign to politics—of the accusation and defence; here alone his heart swelled proudly before the whole great and mighty Roman people hanging on his lips. But all this was now gone. Not as though there was any lack of orators or of the publishing of speeches delivered before the burgesses; on the contrary political authorship only now waxed copious, and it began to become a standing complaint at table that the host incommoded his guests by reading before them his latest orations. Publius Clodius had his speeches to the people issued as pamphlets, just like Gaius Gracchus; but two men may do the same thing without producing the same effect. The more important leaders even of the opposition, especially Caesar himself, did not often address the burgesses, and no longer published the speeches which they delivered; indeed they partly sought for their political fugitive writings another form than the traditional one of -contiones-, in which respect more especially the writings praising and censuring Cato(33) are remarkable. This is easily explained. Gaius Gracchus had addressed the burgesses; now men addressed the populace; and as the audience, so was the speech. No wonder that the reputable political author shunned a dress which implied that he had directed his words to the crowd assembled in the market-place of the capital.

Rise of A Literature of Pleadings

While the composition of orations thus declined from its former literary and political value in the same way as all branches of literature which were the natural growth of the national life, there began at the same time a singular, non-political, literature of pleadings. Hitherto the Romans had known nothing of the idea that the address of an advocate as such was destined not only for the judges and the parties, but also for the literary edification of contemporaries and posterity; no advocate had written down and published his pleadings, unless they were possibly at the same time political orations and in so far were fitted to be circulated as party writings, and this had not occurred very frequently. Even Quintus Hortensius (640-704), the most celebrated Roman advocate in the first years of this period, published but few speeches and these apparently only such as were wholly or half political. It was his successor in the leadership of the Roman bar, Marcus Tullius Cicero (648-711) who was from the outset quite as much author as forensic orator; he published his pleadings regularly, even when they were not at all or but remotely connected with politics. This was a token, not of progress, but of an unnatural and degenerate state of things. Even in Athens the appearance of non-political pleadings among the forms of literature was a sign of debility; and it was doubly so in Rome, which did not, like Athens, by a sort of necessity produce this malformation from the exaggerated pursuit of rhetoric, but borrowed it from abroad arbitrarily and in antagonism to the better traditions of the nation. Yet this new species of literature came rapidly into vogue, partly because it had various points of contact and coincidence with the earlier authorship of political orations, partly because the unpoetic, dogmatical, rhetorizing temperament of the Romans offered a favourable soil for the new seed, as indeed at the present day the speeches of advocates and even a sort of literature of law-proceedings are of some importance in Italy.

His Character

Thus oratorical authorship emancipated from politics was naturalized in the Roman literary world by Cicero. We have already had occasion several times to mention this many-sided man. As a statesman without insight, idea, or purpose, he figured successively as democrat, as aristocrat, and as a tool of the monarchs, and was never more than a short-sighted egotist. Where he exhibited the semblance of action, the questions to which his action applied had, as a rule, just reached their solution; thus he came forward in the trial of Verres against the senatorial courts when they were already set aside; thus he was silent at the discussion on the Gabinian, and acted as a champion of the Manilian, law; thus he thundered against Catilina when his departure was already settled, and so forth. He was valiant in opposition to sham attacks, and he knocked down many walls of pasteboard with a loud din; no serious matter was ever, either in good or evil, decided by him, and the execution of the Catilinarians in particular was far more due to his acquiescence than to his instigation. In a literary point of view we have already noticed that he was the creator of the modern Latin prose;(34) his importance rests on his mastery of style, and it is only as a stylist that he shows confidence in himself. In the character of an author, on the other hand, he stands quite as low as in that of a statesman. He essayed the most varied tasks, sang the great deeds of Marius and his own petty achievements in endless hexameters, beat Demosthenes off the field with his speeches, and Plato with his philosophic dialogues; and time alone was wanting for him to vanquish also Thucydides. He was in fact so thoroughly a dabbler, that it was pretty much a matter of indifference to what work he applied his hand. By nature a journalist in the worst sense of that term—abounding, as he himself says, in words, poor beyond all conception in ideas—there was no department in which he could not with the help of a few books have rapidly got up by translation or compilation a readable essay. His correspondence mirrors most faithfully his character. People are in the habit of calling it interesting and clever; and it is so, as long as it reflects the urban or villa life of the world of quality; but where the writer is thrown on his own resources, as in exile, in Cilicia, and after the battle of Pharsalus, it is stale and emptyas was ever the soul of a feuilletonist banished from his familiar circles. It is scarcely needful to add that such a statesman and such a -litterateur- could not, as a man, exhibit aught else than a thinly varnished superficiality and heart-lessness. Must we still describe the orator? The great author is also a great man; and in the great orator more especially conviction or passion flows forth with a clearer and more impetuous stream from the depths of the breast than in the scantily-gifted many who merely count and are nothing. Cicero had no conviction and no passion; he was nothing but an advocate, and not a good one. He understood how to set forth his narrative of the case with piquancy of anecdote, to excite, if not the feeling, at any rate the sentimentality of his hearers, and to enliven the dry business of legal pleading by cleverness or witticisms mostly of a personal sort; his better orations, though they are far from coming up to the free gracefulness and the sure point of the most excellent compositions of this sort, for instance the Memoirs of Beaumarchais, yet form easy and agreeable reading. But while the very advantages just indicated will appear to the serious judge as advantages of very dubious value, the absolute want of political discernment in the orations on constitutional questions and of juristic deduction in the forensic addresses, the egotism forgetful of its duty and constantly losing sight of the cause while thinking of the advocate, the dreadful barrenness of thought in the Ciceronian orations must revolt every reader of feeling and judgment.


If there is anything wonderful in the case, it is in truth not the orations, but the admiration which they excited. As to Cicero every unbiassed person will soon make up his mind: Ciceronianism is a problem, which in fact cannot be properly solved, but can only be resolved into that greater mystery of human nature—language and the effect of language on the mind. Inasmuch as the noble Latin language, just before it perished as a national idiom, was once more as it were comprehensively grasped by that dexterous stylist and deposited in his copious writings, something of the power which language exercises, and of the piety which it awakens, was transferred to the unworthy vessel. The Romans possessed no great Latin prose-writer; for Caesar was, like Napoleon, only incidentally an author. Was it to be wondered at that, in the absence of such an one, they should at least honour the genius of the language in the great stylist? And that, like Cicero himself, Cicero's readers also should accustom themselves to ask not what, but how he had written? Custom and the schoolmaster then completed what the power of language had begun.

Opposition to Ciceronianism
Calvus and His Associates

Cicero's contemporaries however were, as may readily be conceived, far less involved in this strange idolatry than many of their successors. The Ciceronian manner ruled no doubt throughout a generation the Roman advocate-world, just as the far worse manner of Hortensius had done; but the most considerable men, such as Caesar, kept themselves always aloof from it, and among the younger generation there arose in all men of fresh and living talent the most decided opposition to that hybrid and feeble rhetoric. They found Cicero's language deficient in precision and chasteness, his jests deficient in liveliness, his arrangement deficient in clearness and articulate division, and above all his whole eloquence wanting in the fire which makes the orator. Instead of the Rhodian eclectics men began to recur to the genuine Attic orators especially to Lysias and Demosthenes, and sought to naturalize a more vigorous and masculine eloquence in Rome. Representatives of this tendency were, the solemn but stiff Marcus Junius Brutus (669-712); the two political partisans Marcus Caelius Rufus (672-706;(35)) and Gaius Scribonius Curio (d. 705(36);)— both as orators full of spirit and life; Calvus well known also as a poet (672-706), the literary coryphaeus of this younger group of orators; and the earnest and conscientious Gaius Asinius Pollio (678-757). Undeniably there was more taste and more spirit in this younger oratorical literature than in the Hortensian and Ciceronian put together; but we are not able to judge how far, amidst the storms of the revolution which rapidly swept away the whole of this richly-gifted group with the single exception of Pollio, those better germs attained development. The time allotted to them was but too brief. The new monarchy began by making war on freedom of speech, and soon wholly suppressed the political oration. Thenceforth the subordinate species of the pure advocate-pleading was doubtless still retained in literature; but the higher art and literature of oratory, which thoroughly depend on political excitement, perished with the latter of necessity and for ever.

The Artificial Dialogue Applied to the Professional Sciences
Cicero's Dialogues

Lastly there sprang up in the aesthetic literature of this period the artistic treatment of subjects of professional science in the form of the stylistic dialogue, which had been very extensively in use among the Greeks and had been already employed also in isolated cases among the Romans.(37) Cicero especially made various attempts at presenting rhetorical and philosophical subjects in this form and making the professional manual a suitable book for reading. His chief writings are the -De Oratore- (written in 699), to which the history of Roman eloquence (the dialogue -Brutus-, written in 708) and other minor rhetorical essays were added by way of supplement; and the treatise -De Republica- (written in 700), with which the treatise -De Legibus- (written in 702?) after the model of Plato is brought into connection. They are no great works of art, but undoubtedly they are the works in which the excellences of the author are most, and his defects least, conspicuous. The rhetorical writings are far from coming up to the didactic chasteness of form and precision of thought of the Rhetoric dedicated to Herennius, but they contain instead a store of practical forensic experience and forensic anecdotes of all sorts easily and tastefully set forth, and in fact solve the problem of combining didactic instruction with amusement. The treatise -De Republica- carries out, in a singular mongrel compound of history and philosophy, the leading idea that the existing constitution of Rome is substantially the ideal state-organization sought for by the philosophers; an idea indeed just as unphilosophical as unhistorical, and besides not even peculiar to the author, but which, as may readily be conceived, became and remained popular. The scientific groundwork of these rhetorical and political writings of Cicero belongs of course entirely to the Greeks, and many of the details also, such as the grand concluding effect in the treatise -De Republica- the Dream of Scipio, are directly borrowed from them; yet they possess comparative originality, inasmuch as the elaboration shows throughout Roman local colouring, and the proud consciousness of political life, which the Roman was certainly entitled to feel as compared with the Greeks, makes the author even confront his Greek instructors with a certain independence. The form of Cicero's dialogue is doubtless neither the genuine interrogative dialectics of the best Greek artificial dialogue nor the genuine conversational tone of Diderot or Lessing; but the great groups of advocates gathering around Crassus and Antonius and of the older and younger statesmen of the Scipionic circle furnish a lively and effective framework, fitting channels for the introduction of historical references and anecdotes, and convenient resting-points for the scientific discussion. The style is quite as elaborate and polished as in the best-written orations, and so far more pleasing than these, since the author does not often in this field make a vain attempt at pathos.

While these rhetorical and political writings of Cicero with a philosophic colouring are not devoid of merit, the compiler on the other hand completely failed, when in the involuntary leisure of the last years of his life (709-710) he applied himself to philosophy proper, and with equal peevishness and precipitation composed in a couple of months a philosophical library. The receipt was very simple. In rude imitation of the popular writings of Aristotle, in which the form of dialogue was employed chiefly for the setting forth and criticising of the different older systems, Cicero stitched together the Epicurean, Stoic, and Syncretist writings handling the same problem, as they came or were given to his hand, into a so-called dialogue. And all that he did on his own part was, to supply an introduction prefixed to the new book from the ample collection of prefaces for future works which he had beside him; to impart a certain popular character, inasmuch as he interwove Roman examples and references, and sometimes digressed to subjects irrelevant but more familiar to the writer and the reader, such as the treatment of the deportment of the orator in the -De Officiis-; and to exhibit that sort of bungling, which a man of letters, who has not attained to philosophic thinking or even to philosophic knowledge and who works rapidly and boldly, shows in the reproduction of dialectic trains of thought. In this way no doubt a multitude of thick tomes might very quickly come into existence—"They are copies," wrote the author himself to a friend who wondered at his fertility; "they give me little trouble, for I supply only the words and these I have in abundance." Against this nothing further could be said; but any one who seeks classical productions in works so written can only be advised to study in literary matters a becoming silence.

Professional Sciences.
Latin Philology

Of the sciences only a single one manifested vigorous life, that of Latin philology. The scheme of linguistic and antiquarian research within the domain of the Latin race, planned by Silo, was carried out especially by his disciple Varro on the grandest scale. There appeared comprehensive elaborations of the whole stores of the language, more especially the extensive grammatical commentaries of Figulus and the great work of Varro -De Lingua Latina-; monographs on grammar and the history of the language, such as Varro's writings on the usage of the Latin language, on synonyms, on the age of the letters, on the origin of the Latin tongue; scholia on the older literature, especially on Plautus; works of literary history, biographies of poets, investigations into the earlier drama, into the scenic division of the comedies of Plautus, and into their genuineness. Latin archaeology, which embraced the whole older history and the ritual law apart from practical jurisprudence, was comprehended in Varro's "Antiquities of Things Human and Divine," which was and for all times remained the fundamental treatise on the subject (published between 687 and 709). The first portion, "Of Things Human," described the primeval age of Rome, the divisions of city and country, the sciences of the years, months, and days, lastly, the public transactions at home and in war; in the second half, "Of Things Divine," the state- theology, the nature and significance of the colleges of experts, of the holy places, of the religious festivals, of sacrificial and votive gifts, and lastly of the gods themselves were summarily unfolded. Moreover, besides a number of monographs— e. g. on the descent of the Roman people, on the Roman gentes descended from Troy, on the tribes—there was added, as a larger and more independent supplement, the treatise "Of the Life of the Roman People"—a remarkable attempt at a history of Roman manners, which sketched a picture of the state of domestic life, finance, and culture in the regal, the early republican, the Hannibalic, and the most recent period. These labours of Varro were based on an empiric knowledge of the Roman world and its adjacent Hellenic domain more various and greater in its kind than any other Roman either before or after him possessed—a knowledge to which living observation and the study of literature alike contributed. The eulogy of his contemporaries was well deserved, that Varro had enabled his countrymen—strangers in their own world—to know their position in their native land, and had taught the Romans who and where they were. But criticism and system will be sought for in vain. His Greek information seems to have come from somewhat confused sources, and there are traces that even in the Roman field the writer was not free from the influence of the historical romance of his time. The matter is doubtless inserted in a convenient and symmetrical framework, but not classified or treated methodically; and with all his efforts to bring tradition and personal observation into harmony, the scientific labours of Varro are not to be acquitted of a certain implicit faith in tradition or of an unpractical scholasticism.(38) The connection with Greek philology consists in the imitation of its defects more than of its excellences; for instance, the basing of etymologies on mere similarity of sound both in Varro himself and in the other philologues of this epoch runs into pure guesswork and often into downright absurdity.(39) In its empiric confidence and copiousness as well as in its empiric inadequacy and want of method the Varronian vividly reminds us of the English national philology, and just like the latter, finds its centre in the study of the older drama. We have already observed that the monarchical literature developed the rules of language in contradistinction to this linguistic empiricism.(40) It is in a high degree significant that there stands at the head of the modern grammarians no less a man than Caesar himself, who in his treatise on Analogy (given forth between 696 and 704) first undertook to bring free language under the power of law.

The Other Professional Sciences

Alongside of this extraordinary stir in the field of philology The small amount of activity in the other sciences is surprising. What appeared of importance in philosophy—such as Lucretius' representation of the Epicurean system in the poetical child-dress of the pre-Socratic philosophy, and the better writings of Cicero— produced its effect and found its audience not through its philosophic contents, but in spite of such contents solely through its aesthetic form; the numerous translations of Epicurean writings and the Pythagorean works, such as Varro's great treatise on the Elements of Numbers and the still more copious one of Figulus concerning the Gods, had beyond doubt neither scientific nor formal value.

Even the professional sciences were but feebly cultivated. Varro's Books on Husbandry written in the form of dialogue are no doubt more methodical than those of his predecessors Cato and Saserna— on which accordingly he drops many a side glance of censure— but have on the whole proceeded more from the study than, like those earlier works, from living experience. Of the juristic labours of Varro and of Servius Sulpicius Rufus (consul in 703) hardly aught more can be said, than that they contributed to the dialectic and philosophical embellishment of Roman jurisprudence. And there is nothing farther here to be mentioned, except perhaps the three books of Gaius Matius on cooking, pickling, and making preserves— so far as we know, the earliest Roman cookery-book, and, as the work of a man of rank, certainly a phenomenon deserving of notice. That mathematics and physics were stimulated by the increased Hellenistic and utilitarian tendencies of the monarchy, is apparent from their growing importance in the instruction of youth (41) and from various practical applications; under which, besides the reform of the calendar,(42) may perhaps be included the appearance of wall-maps at this period, the technical improvements in shipbuilding and in musical instruments, designs and buildings like the aviary specified by Varro, the bridge of piles over the Rhine executed by the engineers of Caesar, and even two semicircular stages of boards arranged for being pushed together, and employed first separately as two theatres and then jointly as an amphitheatre. The public exhibition of foreign natural curiosities at the popular festivals was not unusual; and the descriptions of remarkable animals, which Caesar has embodied in the reports of his campaigns, show that, had an Aristotle appeared, he would have again found his patron-prince. But such literary performances as are mentioned in this department are essentially associated with Neopythagoreanism, such as the comparison of Greek and Barbarian, i. e. Egyptian, celestial observations by Figulus, and his writings concerning animals, winds, and generative organs. After Greek physical research generally had swerved from the Aristotelian effort to find amidst individual facts the law, and had more and more passed into an empiric and mostly uncritical observation of the external and surprising in nature, natural science when coming forward as a mystical philosophy of nature, instead of enlightening and stimulating, could only still more stupefy and paralyze; and in presence of such a method it was better to rest satisfied with the platitude which Cicero delivers as Socratic wisdom, that the investigation of nature either seeks after things which nobody can know, or after such things as nobody needs to know.


If, in fine, we cast a glance at art, we discover here the same unpleasing phenomena which pervade the whole mental life of this period. Building on the part of the state was virtually brought to a total stand amidst the scarcity of money that marked the last age of the republic. We have already spoken of the luxury in building of the Roman grandees; the architects learned in consequence of this to be lavish of marble—the coloured sorts such as the yellow Numidian (Giallo antico) and others came into vogue at this time, and the marble-quarries of Luna (Carrara) were now employed for the first time—and began to inlay the floors of the rooms with mosaic work, to panel the walls with slabs of marble, or to paint the compartments in imitation of marble—the first steps towards the subsequent fresco-painting. But art was not a gainer by this lavish magnificence.

Arts of Design

In the arts of design connoisseurship and collecting were always on the increase. It was a mere affectation of Catonian simplicity, when an advocate spoke before the jurymen of the works of art "of a certain Praxiteles"; every one travelled and inspected, and the trade of the art-ciceroni, or, as they were then called, the -exegetae-, was none of the worst. Ancient works of art were formally hunted after—statues and pictures less, it is true, than, in accordance with the rude character of Roman luxury, artistically wrought furniture and ornaments of all sorts for the room and the table. As early as that age the old Greek tombs of Capua and Corinth were ransacked for the sake of the bronze and earthenware vessels which had been placed in the tomb along with the dead. for a small statuette of bronze 40,000 sesterces (400 pounds) were paid, and 200,000 (2000 pounds) for a pair of costly carpets; a well-wrought bronze cooking machine came to cost more than an estate. In this barbaric hunting after art the rich amateur was, as might be expected, frequently cheated by those who supplied him; but the economic ruin of Asia Minor in particular so exceedingly rich in artistic products brought many really ancient and rare ornaments and works of art into the market, and from Athens, Syracuse, Cyzicus, Pergamus, Chios, Samos, and other ancient seats of art, everything that was for sale and very much that was not migrated to the palaces and villas of the Roman grandees. We have already mentioned what treasures of art were to be found within the house of Lucullus, who indeed was accused, perhaps not unjustly, of having gratified his interest in the fine arts at the expense of his duties as a general. The amateurs of art crowded thither as they crowd at present to the Villa Borghese, and complained even then of such treasures being confined to the palaces and country-houses of the men of quality, where they could be seen only with difficulty and after special permission from the possessor. The public buildings on the other hand were far from filled in like proportion with famous works of Greek masters, and in many cases there still stood in the temples of the capital nothing but the old images of the gods carved in wood. As to the exercise of art there is virtually nothing to report; there is hardly mentioned by name from this period any Roman sculptor or painter except a certain Arellius, whose pictures rapidly went off not on account of their artistic value, but because the cunning reprobate furnished, in his pictures of the goddesses faithful portraits of his mistresses for the time being.

Dancing and Music

The importance of music and dancing increased in public as in domestic life. We have already set forth how theatrical music and the dancing-piece attained to an independent standing in the development of the stage at this period;(43) we may add that now in Rome itself representations were very frequently given by Greek musicians, dancers, and declaimers on the public stage— such as were usual in Asia Minor and generally in the whole Hellenic and Hellenizing world.(44) To these fell to be added the musicians and dancing-girls who exhibited their arts to order at table and elsewhere, and the special choirs of stringed and wind instruments and singers which were no longer rare in noble houses. But that even the world of quality itself played and sang with diligence, is shown by the very adoption of music into the cycle of the generally recognized subjects of instruction;(45) as to dancing, it was, to say nothing of women, made matter of reproach even against consulars that they exhibited themselves in dancing performances amidst a small circle.

Incipient Influence of the Monarchy

Towards the end of this period, however, there appears with the commencement of the monarchy the beginning of a better time also in art. We have already mentioned the mighty stimulus which building in the capital received, and building throughout the empire was destined to receive, through Caesar. Even in the cutting of the dies of the coins there appears about 700 a remarkable change; the stamping, hitherto for the most part rude and negligent, is thenceforward managed with more delicacy and care.


We have reached the end of the Roman republic. We have seen it rule for five hundred years in Italy and in the countries on the Mediterranean; we have seen it brought to ruin in politics and morals, religion and literature, not through outward violence but through inward decay, and thereby making room for the new monarchy of Caesar. There was in the world, as Caesar found it, much of the noble heritage of past centuries and an infinite abundance of pomp and glory, but little spirit, still less taste, and least of all true delight in life. It was indeed an old world; and even the richly-gifted patriotism of Caesar could not make it young again. The dawn does not return till after the night has fully set in and run its course. But yet with him there came to the sorely harassed peoples on the Mediterranean a tolerable evening after the sultry noon; and when at length after a long historical night the new day dawned once more for the peoples, and fresh nations in free self-movement commenced their race towards new and higher goals, there were found among them not a few, in which the seed sown by Caesar had sprung up, and which owed, as they still owe, to him their national individuality.

Notes for Chapter I

1. IV. VII. Bestowal of Latin Rights on the Italian Celts, 527

2. It is a significant trait, that a distinguished teacher of literature, the freedman Staberius Eros, allowed the children of the proscribed to attend his course gratuitously.

3. IV. X. Proscription-Lists

4. IV. IX. Pompeius

5. IV. IV. Administration under the Restoration

6. IV. IV. Livius Drusus

7. IV. IX. Government of Cinna

8. IV. IX. Pompeius

9. IV. IX. Sertorius Embarks

10. IV. VII. Strabo, IV. IX. Dubious Attitude of Strabo

11. IV. IX. Carbo Assailed on Three Sides of Etruria

12. IV. VII. Rejection of the Proposals for an Accomodation

13. IV. X. Reorganization of the Senate

14. It is usual to set down the year 654 as that of Caesar's birth, because according to Suetonius (Caes. 88), Plutarch (Caes. 69), and Appian (B. C. ii. 149) he was at his death (15 March 710) in his 56th year; with which also the statement that he was 18 years old at the time of the Sullan proscription (672; Veil. ii. 41) nearly accords. But this view is utterly inconsistent with the facts that Caesar filled the aedileship in 689, the praetorship in 692, and the consulship in 695, and that these offices could, according to the -leges annales-, be held at the very earliest in the 37th-38th, 40th-41st, and 43rd-44th years of a man's life respectively. We cannot conceive why Caesar should have filled all the curule offices two years before the legal time, and still less why there should be no mention anywhere of his having done so. These facts rather suggest the conjecture that, as his birthday fell undoubtedly on July 12, he was born not in 654, but in 652; so that in 672 he was in his 20th-21st year, and he died not in his 56th year, but at the age of 57 years 8 months. In favour of this latter view we may moreover adduce the circumstance, which has been strangely brought forward in opposition to it, that Caesar "-paene puer-" was appointed by Marius and Cinna as Flamen of Jupiter (Veil. ii. 43); for Marius died in January 668, when Caesar was, according to the usual view, 13 years 6 months old, and therefore not "almost," as Velleius says, but actually still a boy, and most probably for this very reason not at all capable of holding such a priesthood. If, again, he was born in July 652, he was at the death of Marius in his sixteenth year; and with this the expression in Velleius agrees, as well as the general rule that civil positions were not assumed before the expiry of the age of boyhood. Further, with this latter view alone accords the fact that the -denarii- struck by Caesar about the outbreak of the civil war are marked with the number LII, probably the year of his life; for when it began, Caesar's age was according to this view somewhat over 52 years. Nor is it so rash as it appears to us who are accustomed to regular and official lists of births, to charge our authorities with an error in this respect. Those four statements may very well be all traceable to a common source; nor can they at all lay claim to any very high credibility, seeing that for the earlier period before the commencement of the -acta diurna- the statements as to the natal years of even the best known and most prominent Romans, e. g. as to that of Pompeius, vary in the most surprising manner. (Comp. Staatsrecht, I. 8 p. 570.)

In the Life of Caesar by Napoleon III (B. 2, ch. 1) it is objected to this view, first, that the -lex annalis- would point for Caesar's birth-year not to 652, but to 651; secondly and especially, that other cases are known where it was not attended to. But the first assertion rests on a mistake; for, as the example of Cicero shows, the -lex annalis- required only that at the entering on office the 43rd year should be begun, not that it should be completed. None of the alleged exceptions to the rule, moreover, are pertinent. When Tacitus (Ann. xi. 22) says that formerly in conferring magistracies no regard was had to age, and that the consulate and dictatorship were entrusted to quite young men, he has in view, of course, as all commentators acknowledge, the earlier period before the issuing of the -leges annales—-the consulship of M. Valerius Corvus at twenty-three, and similar cases. The assertion that Lucullus received the supreme magistracy before the legal age is erroneous; it is only stated (Cicero, Acad. pr. i. 1) that on the ground of an exceptional clause not more particularly known to us, in reward for some sort of act performed by him, he had a dispensation from the legal two years' interval between the aedileship and praetorship—in reality he was aedile in 675, probably praetor in 677, consul in 680. That the case of Pompeius was a totally different one is obvious; but even as to Pompeius, it is on several occasions expressly stated (Cicero, de Imp. Pomp, ax, 62; Appian, iii. 88) that the senate released him from the laws as to age. That this should have been done with Pompeius, who had solicited the consulship as a commander-in-chief crowned with victory and a triumphator, at the head of an army and after his coalition with Crassus also of a powerful party, we can readily conceive. But it would be in the highest degree surprising, if the same thing should have been done with Caesar on his candidature for the minor magistracies, when he was of little more importance than other political beginners; and it would be, if possible, more surprising still, that, while there is mention of that—in itself readily understood—exception, there should be no notice of this more than strange deviation, however naturally such notices would have suggested themselves, especially with reference to Octavianus consul at 21 (comp., e. g., Appian, iii. 88). When from these irrelevant examples the inference is drawn, "that the law was little observed in Rome, where distinguished men were concerned," anything more erroneous than this sentence was never uttered regarding Rome and the Romans. The greatness of the Roman commonwealth, and not less that of its great generals and statesmen, depends above all things on the fact that the law held good in their case also.

15. IV. IX. Spain

16. At least the outline of these organizations must be assigned to the years 674, 675, 676, although the execution of them doubtless belonged, in great part, only to the subsequent years.

17 IV. IX. The Provinces

18. The following narrative rests substantially on the account of Licinianus, which, fragmentary as it is at this very point, still gives important information as to the insurrection of Lepidus.

19. Under the year 676 Licinianus states (p. 23, Pertz; p. 42, Bonn); [Lepidus?] -[le]gem frumentari[am] nullo resistente l[argi]tus est, ut annon[ae] quinque modi popu[lo da]rentur-. According to this account, therefore, the law of the consuls of 681 Marcus Terentius Lucullus and Gaius Cassius Varus, which Cicero mentions (in Verr. iii. 70, 136; v. 21, 52), and to which also Sallust refers (Hist. iii. 61, 19 Dietsch), did not first reestablish the five -modii-, but only secured the largesses of grain by regulating the purchases of Sicilian corn, and perhaps made various alterations of detail. That the Sempronian law (IV. III. Alterations on the Constitution By Gaius Gracchus) allowed every burgess domiciled in Rome to share in the largesses of grain, is certain. But the later distribution of grain was not so extensive as this, for, seeing that the monthly corn of the Roman burgesses amounted to little more than 33,000 -medimni- = 198,000 -modii- (Cic. Verr. iii. 30, 72), only some 40,000 burgesses at that time received grain, whereas the number of burgesses domiciled in the capital was certainly far more considerable. This arrangement probably proceeded from the Octavian law, which introduced instead of the extravagant Sempronian amount "a moderate largess, tolerable for the state and necessary for the common people" (Cic. de Off. ii. 21, 72, Brut. 62, 222); and to all appearance it is this very law that is the -lex frumentaria- mentioned by Licinianus. That Lepidus should have entered into such a proposal of compromise, accords with his attitude as regards the restoration of the tribunate. It is likewise in keeping with the circumstances that the democracy should find itself not at all satisfied by the regulation, brought about in this way, of the distribution of grain (Sallust, l. c.). The amount of loss is calculated on the basis of the grain being worth at least double (IV. III. Alterations on the Constitution By Gaius Gracchus); when piracy or other causes drove up the price of grain, a far more considerable loss must have resulted.

20. From the fragments of the account of Licinianus (p. 44, Bonn) it is plain that the decree of the senate, -uti Lepidus et Catulus decretis exercitibus maturrime proficiscerentur- (Sallust, Hist. i. 44 Dietsch), is to be understood not of a despatch of the consuls before the expiry of their consulship to their proconsular provinces, for which there would have been no reason, but of their being sent to Etruria against the revolted Faesulans, just as in the Catilinarian war the consul Gaius Antonius was despatched to the same quarter. The statement of Philippus in Sallust (Hist. i. 48, 4) that Lepidus -ob seditionem provinciam cum exercitu adeptus est-, is entirely in harmony with this view; for the extraordinary consular command in Etruria was just as much a -provincia- as the ordinary proconsular command in Narbonese Gaul.

21. III. IV. Hannibal's Passage of the Alps

22. In the recently found fragments of Sallust, which appear to belong to the campaign of 679, the following words relate to this incident: -Romanus [exer]citus (of Pompeius) frumenti gra[tia r]emotus in Vascones i… [it]emque Sertorius mon… e, cuius multum in[terer]it, ne ei perinde Asiae [iter et Italiae intercluderetur].

Notes for Chapter II

1. IV. VIII. New Difficulties

2. IV. VIII. Preliminaries of Delium, IV. VIII. Peace at Dardanus

3. IV. IX. Fresh Difficulties with Mithradates

4. IV. I. Cilicia

5. IV. I. Piracy

6. IV. I. Crete

7. The foundation of the kingdom of Edessa is placed by native chronicles in 620 (IV. I. The Parthian Empire), but it was not till some time after its rise that it passed into the hands of the Arabic dynasty bearing the names of Abgarus and Mannus, which we afterwards find there. This dynasty is obviously connected with the settlement of many Arabs by Tigranes the Great in the region of Edessa, Callirrhoe, Carrhae (Plin. H. N. v. 20, 85; ax, 86; vi. 28, 142); respecting which Plutarch also (Luc. 21) states that Tigranes, changing the habits of the tent-Arabs, settled them nearer to his kingdom in order by their means to possess himself of the trade. We may presumably take this to mean that the Bedouins, who were accustomed to open routes for traffic through their territory and to levy on these routes fixed transit-dues (Strabo, xvi. 748), were to serve the great-king as a sort of toll-supervisors, and to levy tolls for him and themselves at the passage of the Euphrates. These "Osrhoenian Arabs" (-Orei Arabes-), as Pliny calls them, must also be the Arabs on Mount Amanus, whom Afranius subdued (Plut. Pomp. 39).

8. The disputed question, whether this alleged or real testament proceeded from Alexander I (d. 666) or Alexander II (d. 673), is usually decided in favour of the former alternative. But the reasons are inadequate; for Cicero (de L. Agr. i. 4, 12; 15, 38; 16, 41) does not say that Egypt fell to Rome in 666, but that it did so in or after this year; and while the circumstance that Alexander I died abroad, and Alexander II in Alexandria, has led some to infer that the treasures mentioned in the testament in question as lying in Tyre must have belonged to the former, they have overlooked that Alexander II was killed nineteen days after his arrival in Egypt (Letronne, Inscr, de I'Egypte, ii. 20), when his treasure might still very well be in Tyre. On the other hand the circumstance that the second Alexander was the last genuine Lagid is decisive, for in the similar acquisitions of Pergamus, Cyrene, and Bithynia it was always by the last scion of the legitimate ruling family that Rome was appointed heir. The ancient constitutional law, as it applied at least to the Roman client- states, seems to have given to the reigning prince the right of ultimate disposal of his kingdom not absolutely, but only in the absence of -agnati- entitled to succeed. Comp. Gutschmid's remark in the German translation of S. Sharpe's History of Egypt, ii. 17.

Whether the testament was genuine or spurious, cannot be ascertained, and is of no great moment; there are no special reasons for assuming a forgery.

9. IV. IX. Fresh Difficulties with Mithradates

10. IV. VIII. Cyrene Roman

11. V. I. Collapse of the Power of Sertorius

12. IV. IV. The Provinces

13. IV. VIII. Lucullus and the Fleet on the Asiatic Coast

14. IV. VIII. Flaccus Arrives in Asia

15. III. V. Attitude of the Romans, III. VI. The African Expedition of Scipio

16. That Tigranocerta was situated in the region of Mardln some two days' march to the west of Nisibis, has been proved by the investigation instituted on the spot by Sachau ("-Ueber die Lage von Tigranokerta-," Abh. der Berliner Akademie, 1880), although the more exact fixing of the locality proposed by Sachau is not beyond doubt. On the other hand, his attempt to clear up the campaign of Lucullus encounters the difficulty that, on the route assumed in it, a crossing of the Tigris is in reality out of the question.

17. Cicero (De Imp. Pomp. 9, 23) hardly means any other than one of the rich temples of the province Elymais, whither the predatory expeditions of the Syrian and Parthian kings were regularly directed (Strabo, xvi. 744; Polyb, xxxi. 11. 1 Maccab. 6, etc.), and probably this as the best known; on no account can the allusion be to the temple of Comana or any shrine at all in the kingdom of Pontus.

18. V. II. Preparations of Mithradates, 328, 334

19. V. II. Invasion of Pontus by Lucullus

20. V. II. Roman Preparations

21. V. I. Want of Leaders

22. V. II. Maritime War

23. IV. I. Crete

24. IV. II. The First Sicilian Slave War, IV. IV. Revolts of the Slaves

25. These enactments gave rise to the conception of robbery as a separate crime, while the older law comprehended robbery under theft.

26. V. II. The Pirates in the Mediterranean

27. As the line was thirty-five miles long (Sallust, Hist, iv, 19, Dietsch; Plutarch, Crass. 10), it probably passed not from Squillace to Pizzo, but more to the north, somewhere near Castrovillari and Cassano, over the peninsula which is here in a straight line about twenty-seven miles broad.

28. That Crassus was invested with the supreme command in 682, follows from the setting aside of the consuls (Plutarch, Crass. 10); that the winter of 682-683 was spent by the two armies at the Bruttian wall, follows from the "snowy night" (Plut. l. c).

Notes for Chapter III

1. IV. X. Assignations to the Soldiers

2. V. I. Pompeius

3. IV. X. Abolition of the Gracchan Institutions

4. V. II. The Insurrection Takes Shape

5. V. III. Attacks on the Senatorial Tribunals

6. V. I. Insurrection of Lepidus

7. IV. X. Co-optation Restored in the Priestly Colleges

8. V. II. Mutiny of the Soldiers

9. IV. IV. Marius Commander-in-Chief

10. The extraordinary magisterial power (-pro consule-, -pro praetore-, -pro quaestore-) might according to Roman state-law originate in three ways. Either it arose out of the principle which held good for the non-urban magistracy, that the office continued up to the appointed legal term, but the official authority up to the arrival of the successor, which was the oldest, simplest, and most frequent case. Or it arose in the way of the appropriate organs—especially the comitia, and in later times also perhaps the senate—nominating a chief magistrate not contemplated in the constitution, who was otherwise on a parity with the ordinary magistrate, but in token of the extraordinary nature of his office designated himself merely "instead of a praetor" or "of a consul." To this class belong also the magistrates nominated in the ordinary way as quaestors, and then extraordinarily furnished with praetorian or even consular official authority (-quaestores pro praetore- or -pro consule-); in which quality, for example, Publius Lentulus Marcellinus went in 679 to Cyrene (Sallust, Hist. ii. 39 Dietsch), Gnaeus Piso in 689 to Hither Spain (Sallust, Cat. 19), and Cato in 696 to Cyprus (Vell. ii. 45). Or, lastly, the extraordinary magisterial authority was based on the right of delegation vested in the supreme magistrate. If he left the bounds of his province or otherwise was hindered from administering his office, he was entitled to nominate one of those about him as his substitute, who was then called -legatus pro praetore-(Sallust, lug. 36, 37, 38), or, if the choice fell on the quaestor, -quaestor pro praetore- (Sallust, Iug. 103). In like manner he was entitled, if he had no quaestor, to cause the quaestorial duties to be discharged by one of his train, who was then called -legatus pro quaestore-, a name which is to be met with, perhaps for the first time, on the Macedonian tetradrachms of Sura, lieutenant of the governor of Macedonia, 665-667. But it was contrary to the nature of delegation and therefore according to the older state-law inadmissible, that the supreme magistrate should, without having met with any hindrance in the discharge of his functions, immediately upon his entering on office invest one or more of his subordinates with supreme official authority; and so far the -legati pro praetore-of the proconsul Pompeius were an innovation, and already similar in kind to those who played so great a part in the times of the Empire.

11. V. III. Attempts to Restore the Tribunician Power

12. According to the legend king Romulus was torn in pieces by the senators.

13. IV. II. Further Plans of Gracchus

Notes for Chapter IV

1. V. III. Senate, Equites, and Populares

2. V. II. Metellus Subdues Crete

3. [Literally "twenty German miles"; but the breadth of the island does not seem in reality half so much.—Tr.]

4. V. II. Renewal of the War

5. Pompeius distributed among his soldiers and officers as presents 384,000,000 sesterces (=16,000 talents, App. Mithr. 116); as the officers received 100,000,000 (Plin. H. N. xxxvii. 2, 16) and each of the common soldiers 6000 sesterces (Plin., App.), the army still numbered at its triumph about 40,000 men.

6. V. II. Sieges of the Pontic Cities

7. V. II. All the Armenian Conquests Pass into the Hands of the Romans

8. V. II. Syria under Tigranes

9. V. II. Syria under Tigranes

10. IV. I. The Jews

11. V. II. Siege and Battle of Tigranocerta

12. Thus the Sadducees rejected the doctrine of angels and spirits and the resurrection of the dead. Most of the traditional points of difference between Pharisees and Sadducees relate to subordinate questions of ritual, jurisprudence, and the calendar. It is a characteristic fact, that the victorious Pharisees have introduced those days, on which they definitively obtained the superiority in particular controversies or ejected heretical members from the supreme consistory, into the list of the memorial and festival days of the nation.

13. V. II. All the Armenian Conquests Pass into the Hands of the Romans

14. V. II. Beginning of the Armenian War, V. II. All the Armenian Conquests Pass into the Hands of the Romans

15. Pompeius spent the winter of 689-690 still in the neighbourhood of the Caspian Sea (Dio, xxxvii. 7). In 690 he first reduced the last strongholds still offering resistance in the kingdom of Pontus, and then moved slowly, regulating matters everywhere, towards the south. That the organization of Syria began in 690 is confirmed by the fact that the Syrian provincial era begins with this year, and by Cicero's statement respecting Commagene (Ad Q. fr. ii. 12, 2; comp. Dio, xxxvii. 7). During the winter of 690-691 Pompeius seems to have had his headquarters in Antioch (Joseph, xiv. 3, 1, 2, where the confusion has been rectified by Niese in the Hermes, xi. p. 471).

16. III. V. New Warlike Preparations in Rome

17. III. IV. War Party and Peace Party in Carthage

18. Orosius indeed (vi. 6) and Dio (xxxvii. 15), both of them doubtless following Livy, make Pompeius get to Petra and occupy the city or even reach the Red Sea; but that he, on the contrary, soon after receiving the news of the death of Mithradates, which came to him on his march towards Jerusalem, returned from Syria to Pontus, is stated by Plutarch (Pomp. 41, 42) and is confirmed by Floras (i. 39) and Josephus (xiv. 3, 3, 4). If king Aretas figures in the bulletins among those conquered by Pompeius, this is sufficiently accounted for by his withdrawal from Jerusalem at the instigation of Pompeius.

19. V. II. Renewal of the War, V. IV. Variance between Mithradates and Tigranes

20. This view rests on the narrative of Plutarch (Pomp. 36) which is supported by Strabo's (xvi. 744) description of the position of the satrap of Elymais. It is an embellishment of the matter, when in the lists of the countries and kings conquered by Pompeius Media and its king Darius are enumerated (Diodorus, Fr, Vat. p. 140; Appian, Mithr. 117); and from this there has been further concocted the war of Pompeius with the Medes (Veil. ii. 40; Appian, Mithr. 106, 114) and then even his expedition to Ecbatana (Oros. vi. 5). A confusion with the fabulous town of the same name on Carmel has hardly taken place here; it is simply that intolerable exaggeration—apparently originating in the grandiloquent and designedly ambiguous bulletins of Pompeius—which has converted his razzia against the Gaetulians (p. 94) into a march to the west coast of Africa (Plut. Pomp. 38), his abortive expedition against the Nabataeans into a conquest of the city of Petra, and his award as to the boundaries of Armenia into a fixing of the boundary of the Roman empire beyond Nisibis.

21. The war which this Antiochus is alleged to have waged with Pompeius (Appian, Mithr. 106, 117) is not very consistent with the treaty which he concluded with Lucullus (Dio, xxxvi. 4), and his undisturbed continuance in his sovereignty; presumably it has been concocted simply from the circumstance, that Antiochus of Commagene figured among the kings subdued by Pompeius.

22. To this Cicero's reproach presumably points (De Off. iii. 12, 49): -piratas immunes habemus, socios vectigales-; in so far, namely, as those pirate-colonies probably had the privilege of immunity conferred on them by Pompeius, while, as is well known, the provincial communities dependent on Rome were, as a rule, liable to taxation.

23. IV. VIII. Pontus

24. V. IV. Battle at Nicopolis

25. V. II. Defeat of the Romans in Pontus at Ziela

26. V. IV. Pompeius Take the Supreme Command against Mithradates

27. IV. VIII. Weak Counterpreparations of the Romans ff.

28. V. II. Egypt not Annexed

29. V. IV. Urban Communities

Notes for Chapter V

1. V. III. Renewal of the Censorship

2. IV. VI. Political Projects of Marius

3. IV. X. Co-optation Restored in the Priestly Colleges

4. IV. VII. The Sulpician Laws

5. IV. X. Permanent and Special -Quaestiones-

6. IV. VI. And Overpowered

7. IV. VII. Bestowal of Latin Rights on the Italian Celts

8. Any one who surveys the whole state of the political relations of this period will need no special proofs to help him to see that the ultimate object of the democratic machinations in 688 et seq. was not the overthrow of the senate, but that of Pompeius. Yet such proofs are not wanting. Sallust states that the Gabinio- Manilian laws inflicted a mortal blow on the democracy (Cat. 39); that the conspiracy of 688-689 and the Servilian rogation were specially directed against Pompeius, is likewise attested (Sallust Cat. 19; Val. Max. vi. 2, 4; Cic. de Lege Agr. ii. 17, 46). Besides the attitude of Crassus towards the conspiracy alone shows sufficiently that it was directed against Pompeius.

9. V. V. Transpadanes

10. Plutarch, Crass. 13; Cicero, de Lege agr. ii. 17, 44. To this year (689) belongs Cicero's oration -de rege Alexandrino-, which has been incorrectly assigned to the year 698. In it Cicero refutes, as the fragments clearly show, the assertion of Crassus, that Egypt had been rendered Roman property by the testament of king Alexander. This question of law might and must have been discussed in 689; but in 698 it had been deprived of its significance through the Julian law of 695. In 698 moreover the discussion related not to the question to whom Egypt belonged, but to the restoration of the king driven out by a revolt, and in this transaction which is well known to us Crassus played no part. Lastly, Cicero after the conference of Luca was not at all in a position seriously to oppose one of the triumvirs.

11. V. IV. Pompeius Proceeds to Colchis

12. V. III. Attacks on the Senatorial Tribunals, V. III. Renewal of the Censorship

13. The -Ambrani- (Suet. Caes. 9) are probably not the Ambrones named along with the Cimbri (Plutarch, Mar. 19), but a slip of the pen for -Arverni-.

14. This cannot well be expressed more naively than is done in the memorial ascribed to his brother (de pet. cons. i, 5; 13, 51, 53; in 690); the brother himself would hardly have expressed his mind publicly with so much frankness. In proof of this unprejudiced persons will read not without interest the second oration against Rullus, where the "first democratic consul," gulling the friendly public in a very delectable fashion, unfolds to it the "true democracy."

15. His epitaph still extant runs: -Cn. Calpurnius Cn. f. Piso quaestor fro pr. ex s. c. proviniciam Hispaniam citeriorem optinuit-.

16. V. V. Failure of the First Plans of Conspiracy

17. V. III. Continued Subsistence of the Sullan Constitution

18. IV. XII. Priestly Colleges

19. IV. VII. Economic Crisis

20. V. V. Rehabilitation of Saturninus and Marius

21. Such an apology is the -Catilina- of Sallust, which was published by the author, a notorious Caesarian, after the year 708, either under the monarchy of Caesar or more probably under the triumvirate of his heirs; evidently as a treatise with a political drift, which endeavours to bring into credit the democratic party— on which in fact the Roman monarchy was based—and to clear Caesar's memory from the blackest stain that rested on it; and with the collateral object of whitewashing as far as possible the uncle of the triumvir Marcus Antonius (comp. e. g. c. 59 with Dio, xxxvii. 39). The Jugurtha of the same author is in an exactly similar way designed partly to expose the pitifulness of the oligarchic government, partly to glorify the Coryphaeus of the democracy, Gaius Marius. The circumstance that the adroit author keeps the apologetic and inculpatory character of these writings of his in the background, proves, not that they are not partisan treatises, but that they are good ones.

22. V. XII. Greek Literati in Rome

Notes for Chapter VI

1. V. IV. Aggregate Results

2. The impression of the first address, which Pompeius made to the burgesses after his return, is thus described by Cicero (ad Att. i. 14): -prima contio Pompei non iucunda miseris (the rabble), inanis improbis (the democrats), beatis (the wealthy) non grata, bonis (the aristocrats) non gravis; itaque frigebat-.

3. IV. X. Regulating of the Qualifications for Office

4. V. V. New Projects of the Conspirators

5. V. VI. Pompeius without Influence

6. IV. IX. Government of Cinna, IV. X. Punishments Inflicted on Particular Communities

7. IV. XII. Oriental Religions in Italy

8. V. V. Transpadanes

9. IV. X. Cisalpine Gaul Erected into a Province

10. V. IV. Cyprus Annexed

11. IV. VI. Violent Proceedings in the Voting

12. V. IV. Cyprus Annexed

Notes for Chapter VII

1. IV. I. The Callaeci Conquered

2. IV. IX. Spain

3. V. I. Renewed Outbreak of the Spanish Insurrection

4. V. I. Pompeius in Gaul

5. V. I. Indefinite and Perilous Character of the Sertorian War

6. V. V. Conviction and Arrest of the Conspirators in the Capital

7. V. I. Pompeius Puts and End to the Insurrection

8. IV. II. Scipio Aemilianus

9. There was found, for instance, at Vaison in the Vocontian canton an inscription written in the Celtic language with the ordinary Greek alphabet. It runs thus: —segouaros ouilloneos tooutious namausatis eiorou beileisamisosin nemeiton—. The last word means "holy."

10. An immigration of Belgic Celts to Britain continuing for a considerable time seems indicated by the names of English tribes on both banks of the Thames borrowed from Belgic cantons; such as the Atrebates, the Belgae, and even the Britanni themselves, which word appears to have been transferred from the Brittones settled on the Somme below Amiens first to an English canton and then to the whole island. The English gold coinage was also derived from the Belgic and originally identical with it.

11. The first levy of the Belgic cantons exclusive of the Remi, that is, of the country between the Seine and the Scheldt and eastward as far as the vicinity of Rheims and Andernach, from 9000 to 10,000 square miles, is reckoned at about 300,000 men; in accordance with which, if we regard the proportion of the first levy to the whole men capable of bearing arms specified for the Bellovaci as holding good generally, the number of the Belgae capable of bearing arms would amount to 500,000 and the whole population accordingly to at least 2,000,000. The Helvetii with the adjoining peoples numbered before their migration 336,000; if we assume that they were at that time already dislodged from the right bank of the Rhine, their territory may be estimated at nearly 1350 square miles. Whether the serfs are included in this, we can the less determine, as we do not know the form which slavery assumed amongst the Celts; what Caesar relates (i. 4) as to the slaves, clients, and debtors of Orgetorix tells rather in favour of, than against, their being included.

That, moreover, every such attempt to make up by combinations for the statistical basis, in which ancient history is especially deficient, must be received with due caution, will be at once apprehended by the intelligent reader, while he will not absolutely reject it on that account.

12. "In the interior of Transalpine Gaul on the Rhine," says Scrofa in Varro, De R. R. i. 7, 8, "when I commanded there, I traversed some districts, where neither the vine nor the olive nor the fruit-tree appears, where they manure the fields with white Pit-chalk, where they have neither rock—nor sea-salt, but make use of the saline ashes of certain burnt wood instead of salt." This description refers probably to the period before Caesar and to the eastern districts of the old province, such as the country of the Allobroges; subsequently Pliny (H. N. xvii. 6, 42 seq.) describes at length the Gallo-Britannic manuring with marl.

13. "The Gallic oxen especially are of good repute in Italy, for field labour forsooth; whereas the Ligurian are good for nothing." (Varro, De R. R. ii. 5, 9). Here, no doubt, Cisalpine Gaul is referred to, but the cattle-husbandry there doubtless goes back to the Celtic epoch. Plautus already mentions the "Gallic ponies" (-Gallici canterii-, Aul. iii. 5. 21). "It is not every race that is suited for the business of herdsmen; neither the Bastulians nor the Turdulians" (both in Andalusia) "are fit for it; the Celts are the best, especially as respects beasts for riding and burden (-iumenta-)" (Varro, De R. R. ii. 10, 4).

14. We are led to this conclusion by the designation of the trading or "round" as contrasted with the "long" or war vessel, and the similar contrast of the "oared ships" (—epikopoi veies—) and the "merchantmen" (—olkades—, Dionys. iii. 44); and moreover by the smallness of the crew in the trading vessels, which in the very largest amounted to not more than 200 men (Rhein. Mus. N. F. xi. 625), while in the ordinary galley of three decks there were employed 170 rowers (III. II. The Romans Build A Fleet). Comp. Movers, Phoen. ii. 3, 167 seq.

15. IV. V. Transalpine Relations of Rome

16. IV. V. Defeat of Longinus

17. IV. V. Transalpine Relations of Rome

18. This remarkable word must have been in use as early as the sixth century of Rome among the Celts in the valley of the Po; for Ennius is already acquainted with it, and it can only have reached the Italians at so early a period from that quarter. It is not merely Celtic, however, but also German, the root of our "Amt," as indeed the retainer-system itself is common to the Celts and the Germans. It would be of great historical importance to ascertain whether the word—and so also the thing—came to the Celts from the Germans, or to the Germans from the Celts. If, as is usually supposed, the word is originally German and primarily signified the servant standing in battle "against the back" (-and-= against, -bak- = back) of his master, this is not wholly irreconcileable with the singularly early occurrence of this word among the Celts. According to all analogy the right to keep -ambacti-, that is, —doouloi misthotoi—, cannot have belonged to the Celtic nobility from the outset, but must only have developed itself gradually in antagonism to the older monarchy and to the equality of the free commons. If thus the system of -ambacti- among the Celts was not an ancient and national, but a comparatively recent institution, it is—looking to the relation which had subsisted for centuries between the Celts and Germans, and which is to be explained farther on—not merely possible but even probable that the Celts, in Italy as in Gaul, employed Germans chiefly as those hired servants-at- arms. The "Swiss guard" would therefore in that case be some thousands of years older than people suppose. Should the term by which the Romans, perhaps after the example of the Celts, designate the Germans as a nation-the name -Germani—-be really of Celtic origin, this obviously accords very well with that hypothesis.—No doubt these assumptions must necessarily give way, should the word -ambactus- be explained in a satisfactory way from a Celtic root; as in fact Zeuss (Gramm. p. 796), though doubtfully, traces it to -ambi- = around and -aig- = -agere-, viz. one moving round or moved round, and so attendants, servants. The circumstance that the word occurs also as a Celtic proper name (Zeuss, p. 77), and is perhaps preserved in the Cambrian -amaeth- = peasant, labourer (Zeuss, p. 156), cannot decide the point either way,

19. From the Celtic words -guerg- = worker and -breth- = judgment.

20. IV. V. Transalpine Relations of Rome

21. The position which such a federal general occupied with reference to his troops, is shown by the accusation of high treason raised against Vercingetorix (Caesar, B. G. vii. 20).

22. IV. V. The Cimbri

23. II. IV. The Celts Assail the Etruscans in Northern Italy

24. V. VII. Art and Science

25. Caesar's Suebi thus were probably the Chatti; but that designation certainly belonged in Caesar's time, and even much later, also to every other German stock which could be described as a regularly wandering one. Accordingly if, as is not to be doubted, the "king of the Suebi" in Mela (iii. i) and Pliny (H. N. ii. 67, 170) was Ariovistus, it by no means therefore follows that Ariovistus was a Chattan. The Marcomani cannot be demonstrated as a distinct people before Marbod; it is very possible that the word up to that point indicates nothing but what it etymologically signifies—the land, or frontier, guard. When Caesar (i, 51) mentions Marcomani among the peoples fighting in the army of Ariovistus, he may in this instance have misunderstood a merely appellative designation, just as he has decidedly done in the case of the Suebi.

26. IV. V. The Tribes at the Sources of the Rhine and Along the Danube

27. IV. V. The Tribes at the Sources of the Rhine and Along the Danube

28. IV. V. Teutones in the Province of Gaul

29. The arrival of Ariovistus in Gaul has been placed, according to Caesar, i. 36, in 683, and the battle of Admagetobriga (for such was the name of the place now usually, in accordance with a false inscription, called Magetobriga), according to Caesar i. 35 and Cicero Ad. Att. i. 19, in 693.

30. V. VII. Wars and Revolts There

31. That we may not deem this course of things incredible, or even impute to it deeper motives than ignorance and laziness in statesmen, we shall do well to realize the frivolous tone in which a distinguished senator like Cicero expresses himself in his correspondence respecting these important Transalpine affairs.

32. IV. V. Inroad of the Helvetii into Southern Gaul

33. According to the uncorrected calendar. According to the current rectification, which however here by no means rests on sufficiently trustworthy data, this day corresponds to the 16th of April of the Julian calendar.

34. IV. V. The Cimbri, Teutones, and Helvetii Unite

35. -Julia Equestris-, where the last surname is to be taken as in other colonies of Caesar the surnames of sextanorum, decimanorum, etc. It was Celtic or German horsemen of Caesar, who, of course with the bestowal of the Roman or, at any rate, Latin franchise, received land-allotments there.

36. Goler (Caesars gall. Krieg, p. 45, etc.) thinks that he has found the field of battle at Cernay not far from Muhlhausen, which, on the whole, agrees with Napoleon's (Precis, p. 35) placing of the battle-field in the district of Belfort. This hypothesis, although not certain, suits the circumstances of the case; for the fact that Caesar required seven days' march for the short space from Besancon to that point, is explained by his own remark (i. 41) that he had taken a circuit of fifty miles to avoid the mountain paths; and the whole description of the pursuit continued as far as the Rhine, and evidently not lasting for several days but ending on the very day of the battle, decides—the authority of tradition being equally balanced—in favour of the view that the battle was fought five, not fifty, miles from the Rhine. The proposal of Rustow (-Einleitung zu Caesars Comm-. p. 117) to transfer the field of battle to the upper Saar rests on a misunderstanding. The corn expected from the Sequani, Leuci, Lingones was not to come to the Roman army in the course of their march against Ariovistus, but to be delivered at Besancon before their departure, and taken by the troops along with them; as is clearly apparent from the fact that Caesar, while pointing his troops to those supplies, comforts them at the same time with the hope of corn to be brought in on the route. From Besancon Caesar commanded the region of Langres and Epinal, and, as may be well conceived, preferred to levy his requisitions there rather than in the exhausted districts from which he came.

37. This seems the simplest hypothesis regarding the origin of these Germanic settlements. That Ariovistus settled those peoples on the middle Rhine is probable, because they fight in his army (Caes. i. 51) and do not appear earlier; that Caesar left them in possession of their settlements is probable, because he in presence of Ariovistus declared himself ready to tolerate the Germans already settled in Gaul (Caes. i. 35, 43), and because we find them afterwards in these abodes. Caesar does not mention the directions given after the battle concerning these Germanic settlements, because he keeps silence on principle regarding all the organic arrangements made by him in Gaul.

38. IV. V. The Cimbri, Teutones, and Helvetii Unite

39. III. II. The Romans Build a Fleet

40. V. I. Pompeius in Gaul

41. V. VII. The Germans on the Lower Rhine

42. The nature of the case as well as Caesar's express statement proves that the passages of Caesar to Britain were made from ports of the coast between Calais and Boulogne to the coast of Kent. A more exact determination of the localities has often been attempted, but without success. All that is recorded is, that on the first voyage the infantry embarked at one port, the cavalry at another distant from the former eight miles in an easterly direction (iv. 22, 23, 28), and that the second voyage was made from that one of those two ports which Caesar had found most convenient, the (otherwise not further mentioned) Portus Itius, distant from the British coast 30 (so according to the MSS. of Caesar v. 2) or 40 miles (=320 stadia, according to Strabo iv. 5, 2, who doubtless drew his account from Caesar). From Caesar's words (iv. 21) that he had chosen "the shortest crossing," we may doubtless reasonably infer that he crossed not the Channel but the Straits of Calais, but by no means that he crossed the latter by the mathematically shortest line. It requires the implicit faith of local topographers to proceed to the determination of the locality with such data in hand—data of which the best in itself becomes almost useless from the variation of the authorities as to the number; but among the many possibilities most may perhaps be said in favour of the view that the Itian port (which Strabo l. c. is probably right in identifying with that from which the infantry crossed in the first voyage) is to be sought near Ambleteuse to the west of Cape Gris Nez, and the cavalry-harbour near Ecale (Wissant) to the east of the same promontory, and that the landing took place to the east of Dover near Walmer Castle.

43. That Cotta, although not lieutenant-general of Sabinus, but like him legate, was yet the younger and less esteemed general and was probably directed in the event of a difference to yield, may be inferred both from the earlier services of Sabinus and from the fact that, where the two are named together (iv. 22, 38; v. 24, 26, 52; vi. 32; otherwise in vi. 37) Sabinus regularly takes precedence, as also from the narrative of the catastrophe itself. Besides we cannot possibly suppose that Caesar should have placed over a camp two officers with equal authority, and have made no arrangement at all for the case of a difference of opinion. the five cohorts are not counted as part of a legion (comp. vi. 32, 33) any more than the twelve cohorts at the Rhine bridge (vi. 29, comp. 32, 33), and appear to have consisted of detachments of other portions of the army, which had been assigned to reinforce this camp situated nearest to the Germans.

44. V. VII. Subjugation of the Belgae

45. IV. V. War with the Allobroges and Arverni

46. V. VII. Cantonal Constitution

47. This, it is true, was only possible, so long as offensive weapons chiefly aimed at cutting and stabbing. In the modern mode of warfare, as Napoleon has excellently explained, this system has become inapplicable, because with our offensive weapons operating from a distance the deployed position is more advantageous than the concentrated. In Caesar's time the reverse was the case.

48. This place has been sought on a rising ground which is still named Gergoie, a league to the south of the Arvernian capital Nemetum, the modern Clermont; and both the remains of rude fortress-walls brought to light in excavations there, and the tradition of the name which is traced in documents up to the tenth century, leave no room for doubt as to the correctness of this determination of the locality. Moreover it accords, as with the other statements of Caesar, so especially with the fact that he pretty clearly indicates Gergovia as the chief place of the Arverni (vii. 4). We shall have accordingly to assume, that the Arvernians after their defeat were compelled to transfer their settlement from Gergovia to the neighbouring less strong Nemetum.

49. The question so much discussed of late, whether Alesia is not rather to be identified with Alaise (25 kilometres to the south of Besancon, dep. Doubs), has been rightly answered in the negative by all judicious inquirers.

50. This is usually sought at Capdenac not far from Figeac; Goler has recently declared himself in favour of Luzech to the west of Cahors, a site which had been previously suggested.

51. This indeed, as may readily be conceived, is not recorded by Caesar himself, but an intelligible hint on this subject is given by Sallust (Hist. i. 9 Kritz), although he too wrote as a partisan of Caesar. Further proofs are furnished by the coins.

52. Thus we read on a -semis- which a Vergobretus of the Lexovii (Lisieux, dep. Calvados) caused to be struck, the following inscription: -Cisiambos Cattos vercobreto; simissos (sic) publicos Lixovio-. The often scarcely legible writing and the incredibly wretched stamping of these coins are in excellent harmony with their stammering Latin.

53. V. VII. Caesar and Ariovistus

54. V. VII. The Helvetii Sent Back to Their Original Abodes

55. V. VII. Beginning of the Struggle

56. IV. V. Taurisci

Notes for Chapter VIII

1. This is the meaning of -cantorum convitio contiones celebrare- (Cic. pro Sest. 55, 118).

2. V. VI. Clodius

3. IV. V. The Victory and the Parties

4. Cato was not yet in Rome when Cicero spoke on 11th March 698 in favour of Sestius (Pro Sest. 28, 60) and when the discussion took place in the senate in consequence of the resolutions of Luca respecting Caesar's legions (Plut. Caes. 21); it is not till the discussions at the beginning of 699 that we find him once more busy, and, as he travelled in winter (Plut. Cato Min. 38), he thus returned to Rome in the end of 698. He cannot therefore, as has been mistakenly inferred from Asconius (p. 35, 53), have defended Milo in Feb. 698.

5. -Me asinum germanum fuisse- (Ad Att. iv. 5, 3).

6. This palinode is the still extant oration on the Provinces to be assigned to the consuls of 699. It was delivered in the end of May 698. The pieces contrasting with it are the orations for Sestius and against Vatinius and that upon the opinion of the Etruscan soothsayers, dating from the months of March and April, in which the aristocratic regime is glorified to the best of his ability and Caesar in particular is treated in a very cavalier tone. It was but reasonable that Cicero should, as he himself confesses (Ad Att. iv. 5, 1), be ashamed to transmit even to intimate friends that attestation of his resumed allegiance.

7. This is not stated by our authorities. But the view that Caesar levied no soldiers at all from the Latin communities, that is to say from by far the greater part of his province, is in itself utterly incredible, and is directly refuted by the fact that the opposition-party slightingly designates the force levied by Caesar as "for the most part natives of the Transpadane colonies" (Caes. B. C. iii. 87); for here the Latin colonies of Strabo (Ascon. in Pison. p. 3; Sueton. Caes. 8) are evidently meant. Yet there is no trace of Latin cohorts in Caesar's Gallic army; on the contrary according to his express statements all the recruits levied by him in Cisalpine Gaul were added to the legions or distributed into legions. It is possible that Caesar combined with the levy the bestowal of the franchise; but more probably he adhered in this matter to the standpoint of his party, which did not so much seek to procure for the Transpadanes the Roman franchise as rather regarded it as already legally belonging to them (iv. 457). Only thus could the report spread, that Caesar had introduced of his own authority the Roman municipal constitution among the Transpadane communities (Cic. Ad Att. v. 3, 2; Ad Fam. viii. 1, 2). This hypothesis too explains why Hirtius designates the Transpadane towns as "colonies of Roman burgesses" (B. G. viii. 24), and why Caesar treated the colony of Comum founded by him as a burgess-colony (Sueton. Caes. 28; Strabo, v. 1, p. 213; Plutarch, Caes. 29), while the moderate party of the aristocracy conceded to it only the same rights as to the other Transpadane communities, viz. Latin rights, and the ultras even declared the civic rights conferred on the settlers as altogether null, and consequently did not concede to the Comenses the privileges attached to the holding of a Latin municipal magistracy (Cic. Ad Att. v. 11, 2; Appian, B. C. ii. 26). Comp. Hermes, xvi. 30.

8. V. VII. Fresh Violations of the Rhine-Boundary by the Germans

9. The collection handed down to us is full of references to the events of 699 and 700 and was doubtless published in the latter year; the most recent event, which it mentions, is the prosecution of Vatinius (Aug. 700). The statement of Hieronymus that Catullus died in 697-698 requires therefore to be altered only by a few years. From the circumstance that Vatinius "swears falsely by his consulship," it has been erroneously inferred that the collection did not appear till after the consulate of Vatinius (707); it only follows from it that Vatinius, when the collection appeared, might already reckon on becoming consul in a definite year, for which he had every reason as early as 700; for his name certainly stood on the list of candidates agreed on at Luca (Cicero, Ad. Att. iv. 8 b. 2).

10. The well-known poem of Catullus (numbered as xxix.) was written in 699 or 700 after Caesar's Britannic expedition and before the death of Julia:

-Quis hoc potest videre, quis potest pati, Nisi impudicus et vorax et aleo, Mamurram habere quod comata Gallia Habebat ante et ultima Britannia-? etc.

Mamurra of Formiae, Caesar's favourite and for a time during the Gallic wars an officer in his army, had, presumably a short time before the composition of this poem, returned to the capital and was in all likelihood then occupied with the building of his much- talked-of marble palace furnished with lavish magnificence on the Caelian hill. The Iberian booty mentioned in the poem must have reference to Caesar's governorship of Further Spain, and Mamurra must even then, as certainly afterwards in Gaul, have been found at Caesar's headquarters; the Pontic booty presumably has reference to the war of Pompeius against Mithradates, especially as according to the hint of the poet it was not merely Caesar that enriched Mamurra.

More innocent than this virulent invective, which was bitterly felt by Caesar (Suet. Caes. 73), is another nearly contemporary poem of the same author (xi.) to which we may here refer, because with its pathetic introduction to an anything but pathetic commission it very cleverly quizzes the general staff of the new regents—the Gabiniuses, Antoniuses, and such like, suddenly advanced from the lowest haunts to headquarters. Let it be remembered that it was written at a time when Caesar was fighting on the Rhine and on the Thames, and when the expeditions of Crassus to Parthia and of Gabinius to Egypt were in preparation. The poet, as if he too expected one of the vacant posts from one of the regents, gives to two of his clients their last instructions before departure:

-Furi et Aureli, comites Catulli-, etc.

11. V. VIII. Clodius

12. In this year the January with 29 and the February with 23 days were followed by the intercalary month with 28, and then by March.

13. -Consul- signifies "colleague" (i. 318), and a consul who is at the same time proconsul is at once an actual consul and a consul's substitute.

14. II. III. Military Tribunes with Consular Powers

Notes for Chapter IX

1. iv. 434

2. Tigranes was still living in February 698 (Cic. pro Sest. 27, 59); on the other hand Artavasdes was already reigning before 700 (Justin, xlii. 2, 4; Plut. Crass. 49).

3. V. IV. Ptolemaeus in Egypt Recognized, but Expelled by His Subjects

4. V. IV. Military Pacification of Syria

5. V. VII. Repulse of the Helvetii, V. VII. Expeditions against the Maritime Cantons

6. V. VII. Cassivellaunus

7. V. VII. The Carnutes ff.

8. V. II. Renewal of the War

9. V. IV. Difficulty with the Parthians

10. IV. I. War against Aristonicus

11. V. VII. Insurrection

12. V. VIII. Humiliation of the Republicans

13. V. VIII. Changes in the Arrangement of Magistrates and the Jury-System

14. V. VIII. Humiliation of the Republicans

15. V. VIII. The Aristocracy Submits ff.

16. V. VIII. Changes in the Arrangement of Magistrates and the Jury-System

17. V. VIII. The Senate under the Monarchy

18. V. II. Mutiny of the Soldiers, V. III. Reappearance of Pompeius

19. V. VII. Alpine Peoples

20. V. IX. Dictatorship of Pompeius

21. -Homo ingeniosissime nequam- (Vellei. ii. 48).

22. V. IX. Debates as to Caesar's Recall

23. IV. X. The Restoration

24. V. II. Beginning of the Armenian War

25. To be distinguished from the consul having the same name of 704; the latter was a cousin, the consul of 705 a brother, of the Marcus Marcellus who was consul in 703.

26. V. IX. Debates ss to Caesar's Recall ff.

27. II. II. Intercession

Notes for Chapter X

1. V. V. Transpadanes

2. V. V. Transpadanes

3. A centurion of Caesar's tenth legion, taken prisoner, declared to the commander-in-chief of the enemy that he was ready with ten of his men to make head against the best cohort of the enemy (500 men; Dell. Afric. 45). "In the ancient mode of fighting," to quote the opinion of Napoleon I, "a battle consisted simply of duels; what was only correct in the mouth of that centurion, would be mere boasting in the mouth of the modern soldier." Vivid proofs of the soldierly spirit that pervaded Caesar's army are furnished by the Reports—appended to his Memoirs—respecting the African and the second Spanish wars, of which the former appears to have had as its author an officer of the second rank, while the latter is in every respect a subaltern camp-journal.

4. V. IX. Debates as to Caesar's Recall

5. IV. IX. Fresh Difficulties with Mithradates

6. V. IV. The New Relations of the Romans in the East, V. IV. Galatia

7. V. IV. Ptolemaeus in Egypt Recognized, but Expelled by His Subjects

8. V. VII. Wars and Revolts There

9. V. IX. Repulse of the Parthians

10. V. IX. Counter-Arrangements of Caesar

11. V. VIII. Settlement of the New Monarchial Rule

12. V. VIII. Changes in the Arrangement of Magistracies and the Jury-System

13. This number was specified by Pompeius himself (Caesar, B.C. i. 6), and it agrees with the statement that he lost in Italy about 60 cohorts or 30,000 men, and took 25,000 over to Greece (Caesar, B.C. iii. 10).

14. V. VII. With the Bellovaci

15. The decree of the senate was passed on the 7th January; on the 18th it had been already for several days known in Rome that Caesar had crossed the boundary (Cic. ad Att. vii. 10; ix. 10, 4); the messenger needed at the very least three days from Rome to Ravenna. According to this the setting out of Caesar falls about the 12th January, which according to the current reduction corresponds to the Julian 24 Nov. 704.

16. IV. IX. Pompeius

17. IV. XI. Italian Revenues

18. V. VII. Caesar in Spain

19. V. VII. Venetian War ff.

20. III. VI. Scipio Driven Back to the Coast

21. V. X. Caesar Takes the Offensive

22. V. VII. Illyria

23. As according to formal law the "legal deliberative assembly" undoubtedly, just like the "legal court," could only take place in the city itself or within the precincts, the assembly representing the senate in the African army called itself the "three hundred" (Bell. Afric. 88, 90; Appian, ii. 95), not because it consisted of 300 members, but because this was the ancient normal number of senators (i. 98). It is very likely that this assembly recruited its ranks by equites of repute; but, when Plutarch makes the three hundred to be Italian wholesale dealers (Cato Min. 59, 61), he has misunderstood his authority (Bell. Afr. 90). Of a similar kind must have been the arrangement as to the quasi-senate already in Thessalonica.

24. V. X. Indignation of the Anarchist Party against Caesar

25. V. X. The Pompeian Army

26. V. IV. And Brought Back by Gabinius

27. V. X. Caesar's Fleet and Army in Illyricum Destroyed

28. According to the rectified calendar on the 5th Nov. 705.

29. V. X. Result of the Campaign as a Whole

30. The exact determination of the field of battle is difficult. Appian (ii. 75) expressly places it between (New) Pharsalus (now Fersala) and the Enipeus. Of the two streams, which alone are of any importance in the question, and are undoubtedly the Apidanus and Enipeus of the ancients—the Sofadhitiko and the Fersaliti—the former has its sources in the mountains of Thaumaci (Dhomoko) and the Dolopian heights, the latter in mount Othrys, and the Fersaliti alone flows past Pharsalus; now as the Enipeus according to Strabo (ix. p. 432) springs from mount Othrys and flows past Pharsalus, the Fersaliti has been most justly pronounced by Leake (Northern Greece, iv. 320) to be the Enipeus, and the hypothesis followed by Goler that the Fersaliti is the Apidanus is untenable. With this all the other statements of the ancients as to the two rivers agree. Only we must doubtless assume with Leake, that the river of Vlokho formed by the union of the Fersaliti and the Sofadhitiko and going to the Peneius was called by the ancients Apidanus as well as the Sofadhitiko; which, however, is the more natural, as while the Sofadhitiko probably has, the Fersaliti has not, constantly water (Leake, iv. 321). Old Pharsalus, from which the battle takes its name, must therefore have been situated between Fersala and the Fersaliti. Accordingly the battle was fought on the left bank of the Fersaliti, and in such a way that the Pompeians, standing with their faces towards Pharsalus, leaned their right wing on the river (Caesar, B. C. iii. 83; Frontinus, Strat. ii. 3, 22). The camp of the Pompeians, however, cannot have stood here, but only on the slope of the heights of Cynoscephalae, on the right bank of the Enipeus, partly because they barred the route of Caesar to Scotussa, partly because their line of retreat evidently went over the mountains that were to be found above the camp towards Larisa; if they had, according to Leake's hypothesis (iv. 482), encamped to the east of Pharsalus on the left bank of the Enipeus, they could never have got to the northward through this stream, which at this very point has a deeply cut bed (Leake, iv. 469), and Pompeius must have fled to Lamia instead of Larisa. Probably therefore the Pompeians pitched their camp on the right bank of the Fersaliti, and passed the river both in order to fight and in order, after the battle, to regain their camp, whence they then moved up the slopes of Crannon and Scotussa, which culminate above the latter place in the heights of Cynoscephalae. This was not impossible. the Enipeus is a narrow slow-flowing rivulet, which Leake found two feet deep in November, and which in the hot season often lies quite dry (Leake, i. 448, and iv. 472; comp. Lucan, vi. 373), and the battle was fought in the height of summer. Further the armies before the battle lay three miles and a half from each other (Appian, B. C. ii. 65), so that the Pompeians could make all preparations and also properly secure the communication with their camp by bridges. Had the battle terminated in a complete rout, no doubt the retreat to and over the river could not have been executed, and doubtless for this reason Pompeius only reluctantly agreed to fight here. The left wing of the Pompeians which was the most remote from the base of retreat felt this; but the retreat at least of their centre and their right wing was not accomplished in such haste as to be impracticable under the given conditions. Caesar and his copyists are silent as to the crossing of the river, because this would place in too clear a light the eagerness for battle of the Pompeians apparent otherwise from the whole narrative, and they are also silent as to the conditions of retreat favourable for these.

31. III. VIII. Battle of Cynoscephalae

32. With this is connected the well-known direction of Caesar to his soldiers to strike at the faces of the enemy's horsemen. the infantry—which here in an altogether irregular way acted on the offensive against cavalry, who were not to be reached with the sabres—were not to throw their -pila-, but to use them as hand- spears against the cavalry and, in order to defend themselves better against these, to thrust at their faces (Plutarch, Pomp. 69, 71; Caes. 45; Appian, ii. 76, 78; Flor. ii. 12; Oros. vi. 15; erroneously Frontinus, iv. 7, 32). The anecdotical turn given to this instruction, that the Pompeian horsemen were to be brought to run away by the fear of receiving scars in their faces, and that they actually galloped off "holding their hands before their eyes" (Plutarch), collapses of itself; for it has point only on the supposition that the Pompeian cavalry had consisted principally of the young nobility of Rome, the "graceful dancers"; and this was not the case (p. 224). At the most it may be, that the wit of the camp gave to that simple and judicious military order this very irrational but certainly comic turn.

33. V. I. Indefinite and Perilous Character of the Sertorian War

34. [I may here state once for all that in this and other passages, where Dr. Mommsen appears incidentally to express views of religion or philosophy with which I can scarcely be supposed to agree, I have not thought it right—as is, I believe, sometimes done in similar cases—to omit or modify any portion of what he has written. The reader must judge for himself as to the truth or value of such assertions as those given in the text.—Tr.]

35. V. IX. Passive Resistance of Caesar

36. V. X. The Armies at Pharsalus

37. V. IV. And Brought Back by Gabinius

38. V. X. Caesar's Fleet and Army in Illyricum Destroyed

39. V. IV. Aggregate Results

40. V. IV. Ptolemaeus in Egypt Recognized, but Expelled by His Subjects

41. V. IV. Cyprus Annexed

42. The loss of the lighthouse-island must have fallen out, where there is now a chasm (B. A. 12), for the island was in fact at first in Caesar's power (B. C. iii. 12; B. A. 8). The mole, must have been constantly in the power of the enemy, for Caesar held intercourse with the island only by ships.

43. V. IV. Robber-Chiefs

44. V. IV. Robber-Chiefs

45. V. X. Caesar's Fleet and Army in Illyricum Destroyed

46. V. VIII. And in the Courts

47. Much obscurity rests on the shape assumed by the states in northwestern Africa during this period. After the Jugurthine war Bocchus king of Mauretania ruled probably from the western sea to the port of Saldae, in what is now Morocco and Algiers (IV. IV. Reorganization of Numidia); the princes of Tingis (Tangiers)—probably from the outset different from the Mauretanian sovereigns—who occur even earlier (Plut. Serf. 9), and to whom it may be conjectured that Sallust's Leptasta (Hist. ii. 31 Kritz) and Cicero's Mastanesosus (In Vat. 5, 12) belong, may have been independent within certain limits or may have held from him as feudatories; just as Syphax already ruled over many chieftains of tribes (Appian, Pun. 10), and about this time in the neighbouring Numidia Cirta was possessed, probably however under Juba's supremacy, by the prince Massinissa (Appian, B. C. iv. 54). About 672 we find in Bocchus' stead a king called Bocut or Bogud (iv. 92; Orosius, v. 21, 14), the son of Bocchus. From 705 the kingdom appears divided between king Bogud who possesses the western, and king Bocchus who possesses the eastern half, and to this the later partition of Mauretania into Bogud's kingdom or the state of Tingis and Bocchus' kingdom or the state of Iol (Caesarea) refers (Plin. H. N. v. 2, 19; comp. Bell. Afric. 23).

48. IV. IX. Fresh Difficulties with Mithradates

49. V. V. Resumption of the Conspiracy

50. V. X. Reorganization of the Coalition In Africa

51. IV. IV. Reorganization of Numidia

52. The inscriptions of the region referred to preserve numerous traces of this colonization. The name of the Sittii is there unusually frequent; the African township Milev bears as Roman the name -colonia Sarnensis-(C. I. L. viii. p. 1094) evidently from the Nucerian river-god Sarnus (Sueton. Rhet. 4).

Notes for Chapter XI

1. V. X. Insurrection in Alexandria

2. The affair with Laberius, told in the well-known prologue, has been quoted as an instance of Caesar's tyrannical caprices, but those who have done so have thoroughly misunderstood the irony of the situation as well as of the poet; to say nothing of the -naivete- of lamenting as a martyr the poet who readily pockets his honorarium.

3. The triumph after the battle of Munda subsequently to be mentioned probably had reference only to the Lusitanians who served in great numbers in the conquered army.

4. Any one who desires to compare the old and new hardships of authors will find opportunity of doing so in the letter of Caecina (Cicero, Aa. Fam. vi. 7).

5. V. VI. Second Coalition of Pompeius, Crassus, and Caesar

6. When this was written—in the year 1857—no one could foresee how soon the mightiest struggle and most glorious victory as yet recorded in human annals would save the United States from this fearful trial, and secure the future existence of an absolute self-governing freedom not to be permanently kept in check by any local Caesarism.

7. V. IX. Preparation for Attacks on Caesar

8. On the 26th January 710 Caesar is still called dictator IIII (triumphal table); on the 18th February of this year he was already -dictator perpetuus- (Cicero, Philip, ii. 34, 87). Comp. Staatsrecht, ii. 3 716.

9. IV. X. Executions

10. The formulation of that dictatorship appears to have expressly brought into prominence among other things the "improvement of morals"; but Caesar did not hold on his own part an office of this sort (Staatsrecht, ii. 3 705).

11. Caesar bears the designation of -imperator- always without any number indicative of iteration, and always in the first place after his name (Staatsrecht, ii. 3 767, note 1).

12. V. V. Rehabilitation of Saturninus and Marius

13. During the republican period the name Imperator, which denotes the victorious general, was laid aside with the end of the campaign; as a permanent title it first appears in the case of Caesar.

14. That in Caesar's lifetime the -imperium- as well as the supreme pontificate was rendered by a formal legislative act hereditary for his agnate descendants—of his own body or through the medium of adoption—was asserted by Caesar the Younger as his legal title to rule. As our traditional accounts stand, the existence of such a law or resolution of the senate must be decidedly called in question; but doubtless it remains possible that Caesar intended the issue of such a decree. (Comp, Staatsrecht, ii. 3 787, 1106.)

15. The widely-spread opinion, which sees in the imperial office of Imperator nothing but the dignity of general of the empire tenable for life, is not warranted either by the signification of the word or by the view taken by the old authorities. -Imperium- is the power of command, -Imperator- is the possessor of that power; in these words as in the corresponding Greek terms —kratos—, —autokrator— so little is there implied a specific military reference, that it is on the contrary the very characteristic of the Roman official power, where it appears purely and completely, to embrace in it war and process—that is, the military and the civil power of command—as one inseparable whole. Dio says quite correctly (liii. 17; comp, xliii. 44; lii. 41) that the name Imperator was assumed by the emperors "to indicate their full power instead of the title of king and dictator (—pros deilosin teis autotelous sphon exousias, anti teis basileos tou te diktatoros epikleiseos—); for these other older titles disappeared in name, but in reality the title of Imperator gives the same prerogatives (—to de dei ergon auton tei tou autokratoros proseigoria bebaiountai—), for instance the right of levying soldiers, imposing taxes, declaring war and concluding peace, exercising the supreme authority over burgess and non-burgess in and out of the city and punishing any one at any place capitally or otherwise, and in general of assuming the prerogatives connected in the earliest times with the supreme imperium." It could not well be said in plainer terms, that Imperator is nothing at all but a synonym for rex, just as imperare coincides with regere.

16. When Augustus in constituting the principate resumed the Caesarian imperium, this was done with the restriction that it should be limited as to space and in a certain sense also as to time; the proconsular power of the emperors, which was nothing but just this imperium, was not to come into application as regards Rome and Italy (Staatsrecht, ii. 8 854). On this element rests the essential distinction between the Caesarian imperium and the Augustan principate, just as on the other hand the real equality of the two institutions rests on the imperfection with which even in principle and still more in practice that limit was realized.

17. II. I. Collegiate Arrangements

18. On this question there may be difference of opinion, whereas the hypothesis that it was Caesar's intention to rule the Romans as Imperator, the non-Romans as Rex, must be simply dismissed. It is based solely on the story that in the sitting of the senate in which Caesar was assassinated a Sibylline utterance was brought forward by one of the priests in charge of the oracles, Lucius Cotta, to the effect that the Parthians could only be vanquished by a "king," and in consequence of this the resolution was adopted to commit to Caesar regal power over the Roman provinces. This story was certainly in circulation immediately after Caesar's death. But not only does it nowhere find any sort of even indirect confirmation, but it is even expressly pronounced false by the contemporary Cicero (De Div. ii. 54, 119) and reported by the later historians, especially by Suetonius (79) and Dio (xliv. 15) merely as a rumour which they are far from wishing to guarantee; and it is under such circumstances no better accredited by the fact of Plutarch (Caes. 60, 64; Brut. 10) and Appian (B. C. ii. 110) repeating it after their wont, the former by way of anecdote, the latter by way of causal explanation. But the story is not merely unattested; it is also intrinsically impossible. Even leaving out of account that Caesar had too much intellect and too much political tact to decide important questions of state after the oligarchic fashion by a stroke of the oracle-machinery, he could never think of thus formally and legally splitting up the state which he wished to reduce to a level.

19. II. III. Union of the Plebeians

20. II. I. The New Community

21. IV. X. Abolition of the Censorial Supervision of the Senate

22. According to the probable calculation formerly assumed (iv. 113), this would yield an average aggregate number of from 1000 to 1200 senators.

23. This certainly had reference merely to the elections for the years 711 and 712 (Staatsrecht, ii. a 730); but the arrangement was doubtless meant to become permanent.

24. I. V. The Senate as State-Council, II. I. Senate

25. V. X. Pacification of Alexandria

26. V. VIII. Changes in the Arrangement of Magistracies and the Jury-System

27. I. V. The King

28. Hence accordingly the cautious turns of expression on the mention of these magistracies in Caesar's laws; -cum censor aliusve quis magistratus Romae populi censum aget (L. Jul. mun. l. 144); praetor isve quei Romae iure deicundo praerit (L. Rubr. often); quaestor urbanus queive aerario praerit- (L. Jul. mun. l. 37 et al.).

29. V. III. New Arrangement as to Jurymen

30. V. VIII. And in the Courts

31. -Plura enim multo-, says Cicero in his treatise De Oratore (ii. 42, 178), primarily with reference to criminal trials, -homines iudicant odio aut amore aut cupiditate aut iracundia aut dolore aut laetitia aut spe aut timore aut errore aut aliqua permotione mentis, quam veritate aut praescripto aut iuris norma aliqua aut iudicii formula aut legibus-. On this accordingly are founded the further instructions which he gives for advocates entering, on their profession.

32. V. VIII. And in the Courts

33. V. VII. Macedonia ff.

34. V. VII. The Gallic Plan of War

35. V. III. Overthrow of the Senatorial Rule, and New Power of Pompeius

36. With the nomination of a part of the military tribunes by the burgesses (III. XI. Election of Officers in the Comitia) Caesar— in this also a democrat—did not meddle.

37. V. VII. The New Dacian Kingdom

38. IV. VI. Political Significance of the Marian Military Reform

39. IV. VI. Political Significance of the Marian Military Reform

40. V. V. Total Defeat of the Democratic Party

41. Varro attests the discontinuance of the Sicilian -decumae- in a treatise published after Cicero's death (De R. R. 2 praef.) where he names—as the corn—provinces whence Rome derives her subsistence—only Africa and Sardinia, no longer Sicily. The -Latinitas-, which Sicily obtained, must thus doubtless have included this immunity (comp. Staatsrecht, iii. 684).

42. V. X. Field of Caesar's Power

43. III. XI. Italian Subjects

44. V. VIII. Clodius

45. III. XIII. Increase of Amusements

46. In Sicily, the country of production, the -modius- was sold within a few years at two and at twenty sesterces; from this we may guess what must have been the fluctuations of price in Rome, which subsisted on transmarine corn and was the seat of speculators.

47. IV. XII. The Finances and Public Buildings

48. It is a fact not without interest that a political writer of later date but much judgment, the author of the letters addressed in the name of Sallust to Caesar, advises the latter to transfer the corn-distribution of the capital to the several -municipia-. There is good sense in the admonition; as indeed similar ideas obviously prevailed in the noble municipal provision for orphans under Trajan.

49. V. XI. The State-Hierarchy

50. III. XII. The Management of the Land and Its Capital

51. The following exposition in Cicero's treatise De officiis (i. 42) is characteristic: -Iam de artificiis et quaestibus, qui liberales habendi, qui sordidi sint, kaec fere accepimus. Primum improbantur ii quaestus, qui in odia hominum incurrunt, ut portitorum, ut feneratorum. Illiberales autem et sordidi quaestus mercenariorum omnium, quorum operae, nonaries emuntur. Est autem in illis ipsa merces auctoramentum servitutis. Sordidi etiam putandi, qui mercantur a mercatoribus quod statim vendant, nihil enim proficiant, nisi admodum mentiantur. Nec vero est quidquam turpius vanitate. Opificesque omnes in sordida arte versantur; nec enim quidquam ingenuum habere potest officina. Minimeque artes eae probandae, quae ministrae sunt voluptatum,

"Cetarii, lanii, coqui, fartores, piscatores,"

ut ait Terentius. Adde huc, si placet, unguentarios, saltatores, totumque ludum talarium. Quibus autem artibus aut prudentia maior inest, aut non mediocris utilitas quaeritur, ut medicina, ut architectura, ut doctrina rerum honestarum, eae sunt iis, quorum ordini conveniunt, honestae. Mercatura autem, si tenuis est, sordida putanda est; sin magna et copiosa, multa undique apportans, multaque sine vanitate impertiens, non est admodum vituperanda; atque etiam, si satiata quaestu, vel contenta potius; ut saepe ex alto in portum, ex ipso portu in agros se possessionesque contulerit, videtur optimo iure posse laudari. Omnium autem rerum, ex quibus aliquid acquiritur, nihil est agricultura melius, nihil uberius, nihil dulcius, nihil homine libero dignius-. According to this the respectable man must, in strictness, be a landowner; the trade of a merchant becomes him only so far as it is a means to this ultimate end; science as a profession is suitable only for the Greeks and for Romans not belonging to the ruling classes, who by this means may purchase at all events a certain toleration of their personal presence in genteel circles. It is a thoroughly developed aristocracy of planters, with a strong infusion of mercantile speculation and a slight shading of general culture.

52. IV. IV. Administration under the Restoration

53. We have still (Macrobius, Hi, 13) the bill of fare of the banquet which Mucius Lentulus Niger gave before 691 on entering on his pontificate, and of which the pontifices—Caesar included—the Vestal Virgins, and some other priests and ladies nearly related to them partook. Before the dinner proper came sea-hedgehogs; fresh oysters as many as the guests wished; large mussels; sphondyli; fieldfares with asparagus; fattened fowls; oyster and mussel pasties; black and white sea-acorns; sphondyli again; glycimarides; sea-nettles; becaficoes; roe-ribs; boar's-ribs; fowls dressed with flour; becaficoes; purple shell-fish of two sorts. The dinner itself consisted of sow's udder; boar's-head; fish-pasties; boar- pasties; ducks; boiled teals; hares; roasted fowls; starch-pastry; Pontic pastry.

These are the college-banquets regarding which Varro (De R. R. iii. 2, 16) says that they forced up the prices of all delicacies. Varro in one of his satires enumerates the following as the most notable foreign delicacies: peacocks from Samos; grouse from Phrygia; cranes from Melos; kids from Ambracia; tunny fishes from Chalcedon; muraenas from the Straits of Gades; bleak-fishes (? -aselli-) from Pessinus; oysters and scallops from Tarentum; sturgeons (?) from Rhodes; -scarus—fishes (?) from Cilicia; nuts from Thasos; dates from Egypt; acorns from Spain.

54. IV. VII. Economic Crisis, IV. IX. Death of Cinna

55. III. X. Greek National Party

56. IV. XI. Capitalist Oligarchy

57. III. XIII. Luxury

58. IV. XII. Practical Use Made of Religion

59. III. XIII. Cato's Family Life, iv. 186 f.

60. IV. I. Achaean War

61. IV. XII. Mixture of Peoples

62. V. VI. Caesar's Agrarian Law

63. V. XI. Dolabella

64. This is not stated by our authorities, but it necessarily follows from the permission to deduct the interest paid by cash or assignation (-si quid usurae nomine numeratum aut perscriptum fuisset-; Sueton. Caes. 42), as paid contrary to law, from the capital.

65. II. III. Laws Imposing Taxes

66. V. V. Preparations of the Anarchists in Etruria

67. IV. VII. Economic Crisis

68. The Egyptian royal laws (Diodorus, i. 79) and likewise the legislation of Solon (Plutarch, Sol. 13, 15) forbade bonds in which the loss of the personal liberty of the debtor was made the penalty of non-payment; and at least the latter imposed on the debtor in the event of bankruptcy no more than the cession of his whole assets.

69. I. XI. Manumission

70. II. III. Continued Distress

71. At least the latter rule occurs in the old Egyptian royal laws (Diodorus, i. 79). On the other hand the Solonian legislation knows no restrictions on interest, but on the contrary expressly allows interest to be fixed of any amount at pleasure.

72. V. VI. Caesar's Agrarian Law

73. V. VI. Caesar's Agrarian Law

74. IV. II. Tribunate of Gracchus, IV. II. The Domain Question Viewed in Itself, IV. IV. The Domain Question under the Restoration

75. IV. XII. Carneades at Rome, V. III. Continued Subsistence of the Sullan Constitution

76. IV. X. The Roman Municipal System

77. Of both laws considerable fragments still exist.

78. V. XI. Diminution of the Proletariate

79. V. VII. Gaul Subdued

80. As according to Caesar's ordinance annually sixteen propraetors and two proconsuls divided the governorships among them, and the latter remained two years in office (p. 344), we might conclude that he intended to bring the number of provinces in all up to twenty. Certainty is, however, the less attainable as to this, seeing that Caesar perhaps designedly instituted fewer offices than candidatures.

81. This is the so-called "free embassy" (-libera legatio-), namely an embassy without any proper public commission entrusted to it.

82. V. II. Piracy

83. V. XI. In The Administration of the Capital

84. V. XI. Foreign Mercenaries

85. V. IX. In the Governorships

86. V. XI. Financial Reforms of Caesar

87. V. I. Organizations of Sertorius

88. V. XI. Robberies and Damage by War

89. V. XI. The Roman Capitalists in the Provinces

90. V. I. Transpadanes, V. VIII. Settlement of the New Monarchial Rule

91. Narbo was called the colony of the Decimani, Baeterrae of the Septimani, Forum Julii of the Octavani, Arelate of the Sextani, Arausio of the Secundani. The ninth legion is wanting, because it had disgraced its number by the mutiny of Placentia (p. 246). That the colonists of these colonies belonged to the legions from which they took their names, is not stated and is not credible; the veterans themselves were, at least the great majority of them, settled in Italy (p. 358). Cicero's complaint, that Caesar "had confiscated whole provinces and districts at a blow" (De Off. ii. 7, 27; comp. Philipp. xiii. 15, 31, 32) relates beyond doubt, as its close connection with the censure of the triumph over the Massiliots proves, to the confiscations of land made on account of these colonies in the Narbonese province and primarily to the losses of territory imposed on Massilia.

92. IV. VII. Bestowal of Latin Rights on the Italian Celts

93. V. XI. Other Magistracies and Attributions

94. We are not expressly informed from whom the Latin rights of the non-colonized townships of this region and especially of Nemausus proceeded. But as Caesar himself (B. C. i. 35) virtually states that Nemausus up to 705 was a Massiliot village; as according to Livy's account (Dio, xli. 25; Flor. ii. 13; Oros. vi. 15) this very portion of territory was taken from the Massiliots by Caesar; and lastly as even on pre-Augustan coins and then in Strabo the town appears as a community of Latin rights, Caesar alone can have been the author of this bestowal of Latinity. As to Ruscino (Roussillon near Perpignan) and other communities in Narbonese Gaul which early attained a Latin urban constitution, we can only conjecture that they received it contemporarily with Nemausus.

95. V. VII. Indulgence toward Existing Arrangements

96. II. V. Crises within the Romano-Latin League

97. V. X. The Leaders of the Republicans Put to Death

98. That no community of full burgesses had more than limited jurisdiction, is certain. But the fact, which is distinctly apparent from the Caesarian municipal ordinance for Cisalpine Gaul, is a surprising one—that the processes lying beyond municipal competency from this province went not before its governor, but before the Roman praetor; for in other cases the governor is in his province quite as much representative of the praetor who administers justice between burgesses as of the praetor who administers justice between burgess and non-burgess, and is thoroughly competent to determine all processes. Beyond doubt this is a remnant of the arrangement before Sulla, under which in the whole continental territory as far as the Alps the urban magistrates alone were competent, and thus all the processes there, where they exceeded municipal competency, necessarily came before the praetors in Rome. In Narbo again, Gades, Carthage, Corinth, the processes in such a case went certainly to the governor concerned; as indeed even from practical considerations the carrying of a suit to Rome could not well be thought of.

99. It is difficult to see why the bestowal of the Roman franchise on a province collectively, and the continuance of a provincial administration for it, should be usually conceived as contrasts excluding each other. Besides, Cisalpine Gaul notoriously obtained the -civitas- by the Roscian decree of the people of the 11th March 705, while it remained a province as long as Caesar lived and was only united with Italy after his death (Dio, xlviii. 12); the governors also can be pointed out down to 711. The very fact that the Caesarian municipal ordinance never designates the country as Italy, but as Cisalpine Gaul, ought to have led to the right view.

100. IV. II. The First Sicilian Slave War

101. The continued subsistence of the municipal census-authorities speaks for the view, that the local holding of the census had already been established for Italy in consequence of the Social war (Staatsrecht, ii. 8 368); but probably the carrying out of this system was Caesar's work.

102. II. VII. Intermediate Fuctionaries, III. III. Autonomy

103. III. XI. Supervision of the Senate Over the Provinces and Their Governors

104. I. XI. Character of the Roman Law

105. IV. XIII. Philology

106. I. XI. Clients and Foreigners

107. V. XI. Usury Laws

108. V. V. Transpadanes

109. I. XIV. Italian Measures ff.

110. III. XII. Coins and Moneys

111. Weights recently brought to light at Pompeii suggest the hypothesis that at the commencement of the imperial period alongside of the Roman pound the Attic mina (presumably in the ratio of 3: 4) passed current as a second imperial weight (Hermes, xvi. 311).

112. The gold pieces, which Sulla (iv. 179) and contemporarily Pompeius caused to be struck, both in small quantity, do not invalidate this proposition; for they probably came to be taken solely by weight just like the golden Phillippei which were in circulation even down to Caesar's time. They are certainly remarkable, because they anticipate the Caesarian imperial gold just as Sulla's regency anticipated the new monarchy.

113. IV. XI. Token-Money

114. It appears, namely, that in earlier times the claims of the state-creditors payable in silver could not be paid against their will in gold according to its legal ratio to silver; whereas it admits of no doubt, that from Caesar's time the gold piece had to be taken as a valid tender for 100 silver sesterces. This was just at that time the more important, as in consequence of the great quantities of gold put into circulation by Caesar it stood for a time in the currency of trade 25 per cent below the legal ratio.

115. There is probably no inscription of the Imperial period, which specifies sums of money otherwise than in Roman coin.

116. Thus the Attic -drachma-, although sensibly heavier than the -denarius-, was yet reckoned equal to it; the -tetradrachmon- of Antioch, weighing on an average 15 grammes of silver, was made equal to 3 Roman -denarii-, which only weigh about 12 grammes; the -cistophorus- of Asia Minor was according to the value of silver above 3, according to the legal tariff =2 1/2 -denarii-; the Rhodian half -drachma- according to the value of silver=3/4, according to the legal tariff = 5/8 of a -denarius-, and so on.

117. III. III. Illyrian Piracy

118. The identity of this edict drawn up perhaps by Marcus Flavius (Macrob. Sat. i. 14, 2) and the alleged treatise of Caesar, De Stellis, is shown by the joke of Cicero (Plutarch, Caes. 59) that now the Lyre rises according to edict.

We may add that it was known even before Caesar that the solar year of 365 days 6 hours, which was the basis of the Egyptian calendar, and which he made the basis of his, was somewhat too long. the most exact calculation of the tropical year which the ancient world was acquainted with, that of Hipparchus, put it at 365 d. 5 h. 52' 12"; the true length is 365 d. 5 h. 48' 48".

119. Caesar stayed in Rome in April and Dec. 705, on each occasion for a few days; from Sept. to Dec. 707; some four months in the autumn of the year of fifteen months 708, and from Oct. 709 to March 710.

Notes for Chapter XII

1. V. VIII. Clodius

2. III. XIV. Cato's Encyclopedia

3. These form, as is well known, the so-called seven liberal arts, which, with this distinction between the three branches of discipline earlier naturalized in Italy and the four subsequently received, maintained their position throughout the middle ages.

4. IV. XII. Latin Instruction

5. Thus Varro (De R. R. i. 2) says: -ab aeditimo, ut dicere didicimus a patribus nostris; ut corrigimur ab recenlibus urbanis, ab aedituo-.

6. The dedication of the poetical description of the earth which passes under the name of Scymnus is remarkable in reference to those relations. After the poet has declared his purpose of preparing in the favourite Menandrian measure a sketch of geography intelligible for scholars and easy to be learned by heart, he dedicates—as Apollodorus dedicated his similar historical compendium to Attalus Philadelphus king of Pergamus

—athanaton aponemonta dexan Attalo teis pragmateias epigraphein eileiphoti— —

his manual to Nicomedes III king (663?-679) of Bithynia:

—ego d' akouon, dioti ton non basileon monos basilikein chreistoteita prosphereis peiran epethumeis autos ep' emautou labein kai paragenesthai kai ti basileus est' idein, dio tei prothesei sumboulon exelexamein … ton Apollena ton Didumei… ou dei schedon malista kai pepeismenos pros sein kata logon eika (koinein gar schedon tois philomathousin anadedeichas) estian—.

7. IV. XIII. Historical Composition

8. V. XII. Greek Instruction

9. Cicero testifies that the mime in his time had taken the place of the Atellana (Ad Fam. ix. 16); with this accords the fact, that the -mimi- and -mimae- first appear about the Sullan epoch (Ad Her. i. 14, 24; ii. 13, 19; Atta Fr. 1 Ribbeck; Plin. H. N. vii. 43, 158; Plutarch, Sull. 2, 36). The designation -mimus-, however, is sometimes inaccurately applied to the comedian generally. Thus the -mimus- who appeared at the festival of Apollo in 542-543 (Festus under -salva res est-; comp. Cicero, De Orat. ii. 59, 242) was evidently nothing but an actor of the -palliata-, for there was at this period no room in the development of the Roman theatre for real mimes in the later sense.

With the mimus of the classical Greek period—prose dialogues, in which -genre- pictures, particularly of a rural kind, were presented—the Roman mimus had no especial relation.

10. With the possession of this sum, which constituted the qualification for the first voting-class and subjected the inheritance to the Voconian law, the boundary line was crossed which separated the men of slender means (-tenuiores-) from respectable people. Therefore the poor client of Catullus (xxiii. 26) beseeches the gods to help him to this fortune.

11. In the "Descensus ad Inferos" of Laberius all sorts of people come forward, who have seen wonders and signs; to one there appeared a husband with two wives, whereupon a neighbour is of opinion that this is still worse than the vision, recently seen by a soothsayer in a dream, of six aediles. Caesar forsooth desired— according to the talk of the time—to introduce polygamy in Rome (Suetonius, Caes. 82) and he nominated in reality six aediles instead of four. One sees from this that aberius understood how to exercise the fool's privilege and Caesar how to permit the fool's freedom.

12. V. VIII. Attempts of the Regents to Check It

13. V. XI. The Poor

14. IV. XIII. Dramatic Arrangements

15. He obtained from the state for every day on which he acted 1000 -denarii- (40 pounds) and besides this the pay for his company. In later years he declined the honorarium for himself.

16. Such an individual apparent exception as Panchaea the land of incense (ii. 417) is to be explained from the circumstance that this had passed from the romance of the Travels of Euhemerus already perhaps into the poetry of Ennius, at any rate into the poems of Lucius Manlius (iv. 242; Plin. H. N. x. a, 4) and thence was well known to the public for which Lucretius wrote.

17. III. XIV. Moral Effect of Tragedy

18. This naively appears in the descriptions of war, in which the seastorms that destroy armies, and the hosts of elephants that trample down those who are on their own side—pictures, that is, from the Punic wars—appear as if they belong to the immediate present. Comp. ii. 41; v. 1226, 1303, 1339.

19. "No doubt," says Cicero (Tusc. iii. 19, 45) in reference to Ennius, "the glorious poet is despised by our reciters of Euphorion." "I have safely arrived," he writes to Atticus (vii. 2 init.), "as a most favourable north wind blew for us across from Epirus. This spondaic line you may, if you choose, sell to one of the new-fashioned poets as your own" (-ita belle nobis flavit ab Epiro lenissumus Onchesmites. Hunc- —spondeiazonta— -si cui voles —ton neoteron— pro tuo vendito-).

20. V. VIII. Literature of the Opposition

21. "For me when a boy," he somewhere says, "there sufficed a single rough coat and a single under-garment, shoes without stockings, a horse without a saddle; I had no daily warm bath, and but seldom a river-bath." On account of his personal valour he obtained in the Piratic war, where he commanded a division of the fleet, the naval crown.

22. V. X. The Pompeians in Spain

23. There is hardly anything more childish than Varro's scheme of all the philosophies, which in the first place summarily declares all systems that do not propose the happiness of man as their ultimate aim to be nonexistent, and then reckons the number of philosophies conceivable under this supposition as two hundred and eighty-eight. The vigorous man was unfortunately too much a scholar to confess that he neither could nor would be a philosopher, and accordingly as such throughout life he performed a blind dance- not altogether becoming—between the Stoa, Pythagoreanism, and Diogenism.

24. On one occasion he writes, "-Quintiforis Clodii foria ac poemata ejus gargaridians dices; O fortuna, O fors fortuna-!" And elsewhere, "-Cum Quintipor Clodius tot comoedias sine ulla fecerit Musa, ego unum libellum non 'edolem' ut ait Ennius?-" This not otherwise known Clodius must have been in all probability a wretched imitator of Terence, as those words sarcastically laid at his door "O fortuna, O fors fortuna!" are found occurring in a Terentian comedy.

The following description of himself by a poet in Varro's
 —Onos Louras—,

 -Pacuvi discipulus dicor, porro is fuit Enni,
 Ennius Musarum; Pompilius clueor-

might aptly parody the introduction of Lucretius (p. 474), to whom Varro as a declared enemy of the Epicurean system cannot have been well disposed, and whom he never quotes.

25. He himself once aptly says, that he had no special fondness for antiquated words, but frequently used them, and that he was very fond of poetical words, but did not use them.

26. The following description is taken from the -Marcipor- ("Slave of Marcus"):—

 -Repente noctis circiter meridie
 Cum pictus aer fervidis late ignibus
 Caeli chorean astricen ostenderet,
 Nubes aquali, frigido velo leves
 Caeli cavernas aureas subduxerant,
 Aquam vomentes inferam mortalibus.
 Ventique frigido se ab axe eruperant,
 Phrenetici septentrionum filii,
 Secum ferentes tegulas, ramos, syrus.
 At nos caduci, naufragi, ut ciconiae
 Quarum bipennis fulminis plumas vapor
 Perussit, alte maesti in terram cecidimus-.

In the —'Anthropopolis— we find the lines:

 -Non fit thesauris, non auro pectu' solutum;
 Non demunt animis curas ac relligiones
 Persarum montes, non atria diviti' Crassi-.

But the poet was successful also in a lighter vein. In the -Est Modus Matulae- there stood the following elegant commendation of wine:—

 -Vino nihil iucundius quisquam bibit.
 Hoc aegritudinem ad medendam invenerunt,
 Hoc hilaritatis dulce seminarium.
 Hoc continet coagulum convivia-.

And in the —Kosmotonounei— the wanderer returning home thus concludes his address to the sailors:

 -Delis habenas animae leni,
 Dum nos ventus flamine sudo
 Suavem ad patriam perducit-.

27. The sketches of Varro have so uncommon historical and even poetical significance, and are yet, in consequence of the fragmentary shape in which information regarding them has reached us, known to so few and so irksome to study, that we may be allowed to give in this place a resume of some of them with the few restorations indispensable for making them readable.

The satire Manius (Early Up!) describes the management of a rural household. "Manius summons his people to rise with the sun, and in person conducts them to the scene of their work. The youths make their own bed, which labour renders soft to them, and supply themselves with water-jar and lamp. Their drink is the clear fresh spring, their fare bread, and onions as relish. Everything prospers in house and field. The house is no work of art; but an architect might learn symmetry from it. Care is taken of the field, that it shall not be left disorderly and waste, or go to ruin through slovenliness and neglect; in return the grateful Ceres wards off damage from the produce, that the high-piled sheaves may gladden the heart of the husbandman. Here hospitality still holds good; every one who has but imbibed mother's milk is welcome. the bread-pantry and wine-vat and the store of sausages on the rafters, lock and key are at the service of the traveller, and piles of food are set before him; contented sits the sated guest, looking neither before nor behind, dozing by the hearth in the kitchen. the warmest double-wool sheepskin is spread as a couch for him.

"Here people still as good burgesses obey the righteous law, which neither out of envy injures the innocent, nor out of favour pardons the guilty. Here they speak no evil against their neighbours. Here they trespass not with their feet on the sacred hearth, but honour the gods with devotion and with sacrifices, throw for the house-spirit his little bit of flesh into his appointed little dish, and when the master of the household dies, accompany the bier with the same prayer with which those of his father and of his grandfather were borne forth."

In another satire there appears a "Teacher of the Old" (—Gerontodidaskalos—), of whom the degenerate age seems to stand more urgently in need than of the teacher of youth, and he explains how "once everything in Rome was chaste and pious," and now all things are so entirely changed. "Do my eyes deceive me, or do I see slaves in arms against their masters?—Formerly every one who did not present himself for the levy, was sold on the part of the state into slavery abroad; now the censor who allows cowardice and everything to pass is called [by the aristocracy, III. XI. Separation Of the Orders in the Theatre; IV. X. Shelving of the Censorship, V. III. Renewal of the Censorship; V. VIII. Humiliations of the Republicans] a great citizen, and earns praise because he does not seek to make himself a name by annoying his fellow-citizens.— Formerly the Roman husbandman had his beard shaven once every week; now the rural slave cannot have it fine enough.—Formerly one saw on the estates a corn-granary, which held ten harvests, spacious cellars for the wine-vats and corresponding wine-presses; now the master keeps flocks of peacocks, and causes his doors to be inlaid with African cypress-wood.—Formerly the housewife turned the spindle with the hand and kept at the same time the pot on the hearth in her eye, that the pottage might not be singed; now," it is said in another satire, "the daughter begs her father for a pound of precious stones, and the wife her husband for a bushel of pearls.—Formerly a newly-married husband was silent and bashful; now the wife surrenders herself to the first coachman that comes.— Formerly the blessing of children was woman's pride; now if her husband desires for himseli children, she replies: Knowest thou not what Ennius says?

"'-Ter sub armis malim vitam cernere Quam semel modo parere—.—'

"Formerly the wife was quite content, when the husband once or twice in the year gave her a trip to the country in the uncushioned waggon;" now, he could add (comp. Cicero, Pro Mil. 21, 55), "the wife sulks if her husband goes to his country estate without her, and the travelling lady is attended to the villa by the fashionable host of Greek menials and the choir." —In a treatise of a graver kind, "Catus or the Training of Children," Varro not only instructs the friend who had asked him for advice on that point, regarding the gods who were according to old usage to be sacrificed to for the children's welfare, but, referring to the more judicious mode of rearing children among the Persians and to his own strictly spent youth, he warns against over-feeding and over-sleeping, against sweet bread and fine fare—the whelps, the old man thinks, are now fed more judiciously than the children—and likewise against the enchantresses' charms and blessings, which in cases of sickness so often take the place of the physician's counsel. He advises to keep the girls at embroidery, that they may afterwards understand how to judge properly of embroidered and textile work, and not to allow them to put off the child's dress too early; he warns against carrying boys to the gladiatorial games, in which the heart is early hardened and cruelty learned.—In the "Man of Sixty Years" Varro appears as a Roman Epimenides who had fallen asleep when a boy of ten and waked up again after half a century. He is astonished to find instead of his smooth-shorn boy's head an old bald pate with an ugly snout and savage bristles like a hedgehog; but he is still more astonished at the change in Rome. Lucrine oysters, formerly a wedding dish, are now everyday fare; for which, accordingly, the bankrupt glutton silently prepares the incendiary torch. While formerly the father disposed of his boy, now the disposal is transferred to the latter: he disposes, forsooth, of his father by poison. The Comitium had become an exchange, the criminal trial a mine of gold for the jurymen. No law is any longer obeyed save only this one, that nothing is given for nothing. All virtues have vanished; in their stead the awakened man is saluted by impiety, perfidy, lewdness, as new denizens. "Alas for thee, Marcus, with such a sleep and such an awakening!"— The sketch resembles the Catilinarian epoch, shortly after which (about 697) the old man must have written it, and there lay a truth in the bitter turn at the close; where Marcus, properly reproved for his unseasonable accusations and antiquarian reminiscences, is— with a mock application of a primitive Roman custom—dragged as a useless old man to the bridge and thrown into the Tiber. There was certainly no longer room for such men in Rome.

28. "The innocent," so ran a speech, "thou draggest forth, trembling in every limb, and on the high margin of the river's bank in the dawn of the morning" [thou causest them to be slaughtered]. Several such phrases, that might be inserted without difficulty in a commonplace novel, occur.

29. V. XII. Poems in Prose

30. V. XII. Catullus

31. V. XII. Greek Literati in Rome

32. That the treatise on the Gallic war was published all at once, has been long conjectured; the distinct proof that it was so, is furnished by the mention of the equalization of the Boii and the Haedui already in the first book (c. 28) whereas the Boii still occur in the seventh (c. 10) as tributary subjects of the Haedui, and evidently only obtained equal rights with their former masters on account of their conduct and that of the Haedui in the war against Vercingetorix. On the other hand any one who attentively follows the history of the time will find in the expression as to the Milonian crisis (vii. 6) a proof that the treatise was published before the outbreak of the civil war; not because Pompeius is there praised, but because Caesar there approves the exceptional laws of 702.(p. 146) This he might and could not but do, so long as he sought to bring about a peaceful accommodation with Pompeius,( p. 175) but not after the rupture, when he reversed the condemnations that took place on the basis of those laws injurious for him.(p. 316) Accordingly the publication of this treatise has been quite rightly placed in 703.

The tendency of the work we discern most distinctly in the constant, often—most decidedly, doubtless, in the case of the Aquitanian expedition (III. XI. The Censorship A Prop of the Nobility)— not successful, justification of every single act of war as a defensive measure which the state of things had rendered inevitable. That the adversaries of Caesar censured his attacks on the Celts and Germans above all as unprovoked, is well known (Sueton. Caes. 24).

33. V. XI. Amnesty

34. V. XII. The New Roman Poetry

35. V. XI. Caelius and Milo

36. V. IX. Curio, V. X. Death of Curio

37. IV. XIII. Sciences

38. A remarkable example is the general exposition regarding cattle in the treatise on Husbandry (ii. 1) with the nine times nine subdivisions of the doctrine of cattle-rearing, with the "incredible but true" fact that the mares at Olisipo (Lisbon) become pregnant by the wind, and generally with its singular mixture of philosophical, historical, and agricultural notices.

39. Thus Varro derives -facere- from -facies-, because he who makes anything gives to it an appearance, -volpes-, the fox, after Stilo from -volare pedibus- as the flying-footed; Gaius Trebatius, a philosophical jurist of this age, derives -sacellum- from -sacra cella-, Figulus -frater- from -fere alter- and so forth. This practice, which appears not merely in isolated instances but as a main element of the philological literature of this age, presents a very great resemblance to the mode in which till recently comparative philology was prosecuted, before insight into the organism of language put a stop to the occupation of the empirics.

40. V. XII. Grammatical Science

41. V. XI. Sciences of General Culture at This Period

42. V. XI. Reform of the Calendar

43. V. XII. Dramatic Spectacles

44. Such "Greek entertainments" were very frequent not merely in the Greek cities of Italy, especially in Naples (Cic. pro Arch. 5, 10; Plut. Brut. 21), but even now also in Rome (iv. 192; Cic. Ad Fam. vii. 1, 3; Ad Att. xvi. 5, 1; Sueton. Caes. 39; Plut. Brut. 21). When the well-known epitaph of Licinia Eucharis fourteen years of age, which probably belongs to the end of this period, makes this "girl well instructed and taught in all arts by the Muses themselves" shine as a dancer in the private exhibitions of noble houses and appear first in public on the Greek stage (-modo nobilium ludos decoravi choro, et Graeca in scaena prima populo apparui-), this doubtless can only mean that she was the first girl that appeared on the public Greek stage in Rome; as generally indeed it was not till this epoch that women began to come forward publicly in Rome (p. 469).

These "Greek entertainments" in Rome seem not to have been properly scenic, but rather to have belonged to the category of composite exhibitions—primarily musical and declamatory—such as were not of rare occurrence in subsequent times also in Greece (Welcker, Griech. Trag., p. 1277). This view is supported by the prominence of flute-playing in Polybius (xxx. 13) and of dancing in the account of Suetonius regarding the armed dances from Asia Minor performed at Caesar's games and in the epitaph of Eucharis; the description also of the -citharoedus- (Ad Her. iv. 47, 60; comp. Vitruv. v. 5, 7) must have been derived from such "Greek entertainments." The combinations of these representations in Rome with Greek athletic combats is significant (Polyb. l. c.; Liv. xxxix. 22). Dramatic recitations were by no means excluded from these mixed entertainments, since among the players whom Lucius Anicius caused to appear in 587 in Rome, tragedians are expressly mentioned; there was however no exhibition of plays in the strict sense, but either whole dramas, or perhaps still more frequently pieces taken from them, were declaimed or sung to the flute by single artists. This must accordingly have been done also in Rome; but to all appearance for the Roman public the main matter in these Greek games was the music and dancing, and the text probably had little more significance for them than the texts of the Italian opera for the Londoners and Parisians of the present day. Those composite entertainments with their confused medley were far better suited for the Ionian public, and especially for exhibitions in private houses, than proper scenic performances in the Greek language; the view that the latter also took place in Rome cannot be refuted, but can as little be proved.

45. V. XI. Sciences of General Culture at This Period

End of Book IV

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