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THE



ROMANS UNDER THE EMPIRE.



VOL. m.



LOSDOX

PBISTBD BT SPOTTISWOODK AXD CO.
SKTY-STREET SQCAEB



HISTOEY



ROMANS UNDER THE EMPIRE.



CHARLES MEKIVALE, B.D.

RECTOR OF LAWFORD:
CHAPLAIX TO THE SPEAKER OP THE HOUSE OF COMMONS.



NEW



IN EIGHT VOLUMES.

VOL. III.



LONDON:
LONGMAN, GREEN, LONGMAN, ROBERTS, & GREEN.

1865.



CONTENTS



or



THE THIKD VOLUME.

N/,3



CHAPTER XXH.

PAGB

Reflections upon Caesar's assassination His person, character,
and abilities Caesar represents the virtues and defects of
his age Influence of the old Etruscan discipline upon the
Romans: it is gradually supplanted by the civilization of
the Greeks Character of Greek civilization in its decay
Philosophy and free-thinking introduced into Rome
Decay of the old Italian faith, and rise of Oriental super-
stitious Influence of* Greek ideas upon the principles of
Roman law Liberal tendencies of Cicero and the contem-
porary jurisconsults Influence of Greek literature upon
the Romans Conflict between the Greek and Italian
spirit: Ennius, Nsevius, Lucilius Spirit of imitation dif-
fused over Roman literature Study of the Greek rhetori-
cians: its effect upon Roman eloquence Decay of military
discipline Familiarity with the courts and standing armies
of the East demoralizes the proconsuls and the legions
Fatal effects of the observation of royalty abroad Con-
cluding remarks - - - - i

CHAPTER XXIH.

Proceedings upon the death of Caesar The exploit of the
liberators meets with no favour from the people Antonius
unites with Lepidus, and obtains the dictator's treasures
and papers Pretended compromise and decree of amnesty
Caesar's acts are ratified and his will disclosed Public
obsequies decreed him Antonius delivers the funeral har-
angue, which inflames the people against the liberators,
and creates a tumult in which they are compelled to con-
ceal themselves (A. u. 710, B.C. 44) - ... 49

CHAPTER XXIV.

Antonius reassures the nobles by his patriotic policy He
abolishes the dictatorship for ever, and represses Caesarean



',', . .



VI CONTENTS OF

PAGE

outbreaks His crafty r.se of Cassar's papers He assigns
lands in Campania Octavius returns to Italy and claims
Caesar's inheritance His favourable reception by tha nobles
and citizens He discharges the dictator's bequests and
fulfils his obligations Antonius regards his proceedings
with jealousy The liberators abandon Rome Decimus
assumes the command of the Cisalpine Antonius in-
duces the senate to take Syria and Macedonia from the
liberators, and bestow them upon Dolabella and himself
Brutus attempts to recover the favour of the people by the
Ludi Apollinares His disappointment Pretended recon-
ciliation of Antonius and Octavius, whereby Antonius ob-
tains from the people the Cisalpine province with the army
of Parthia in exchange for Macedonia Cicero's despon-
dency He leaves Italy, but presently returns and proceeds
to Rome (A. u. 710, B. c. 44) - .... - 90

CHAPTER XXV.,

Cicero re-appears in the senate, and attacks Antonins
The Philippics Antonius repairs to the Cisalpine, and
prepares to dispossess Decimus Octavius arms for the re-
public Cicero exhorts the senate to declare Antonius a
public enemy The senate negotiates with him, and he
rejoins with increased insolence Hirtius and Pansa suc-
ceed to the consulship, A. u. 711 Hirtius leads an army
against Antonius Cassius obtains successes in Syria
Trebonius is destroyed by Dolabella Pansa joins his col-
league Two battles are fought before Mutina The con-
suls are victorious, but are both slain (A. u. 710, 711, B. c.
44,43.) 135

CHAPTER XXVI.

Antonius withdraws from the Cisalpine and effects a junction
with Lepidns beyond the Alps Octavius excuses himself
from pursuing him The senate seeks to cast off Octavius
Irritation of his soldiers He claims the consulship and
marches upon Rome -The senate gives way Octavius
consul, Sept. 711 He joins Antonius and Lepidus De-
cimus is abandoned by his soldiers and slain The second
triumvirate Partition of the provinces and legions The
triumvirs enter Rome The proscriptions Death of Cicero
The Republicans collect their forces in the East Sex-
tus seizes Sicily Antonius and Octavius cross over to
Macedonia The armies meet at Philippi in the autumn of



THE THIRD VOLUME. VU



712 Two engagements at Philippi Rout of the Repub-
licans Cassius and Brutus kill themselves (A. u. 711, 712,
B.C. 43, 42.)- - -.-..- 177

CHAPTER XXVII.

Antonias assumes the government of the Eastern provinces,
and Octavius of the Western Lepidus commands in Africa
Cleopatra fascinates Antonius (712), who repairs to her
at Alexandria Insurrection of L. Antonius, and war of
Perusia (713) Reconciliation of the triumvirs: treaty of
Brundisium : peace restored to Italy Treaty of Misenum
and admission of Sextus Pompeius to a share of power
(715) Ventidius triumphs over the Parthians Quarrel of
the triumvirs with Sextus Octavius arms against him and
is defeated (716) Treaty of Tarentum The triumvirate
is renewed for five years (717) Agrippa commands the
Octavian fleet Second campaign against Sextus En-
counters with various success Agrippa's great victory
(718) Lepidus attacks Octavius, is deserted by his sol-
diers, captured and deposed from power Sextus flies to
the East and is there slain (719) Extinction of the se-
natorial faction Octavius commands in Rome Honours
heaped upon him His salutary measures His ministers
Agrippa and Maecenas: his matrimonial alliances (A. u.
712-719, B.C. 42-35.) 233

CHAPTER XX VIII.

Antonius renews his intimacy with Cleopatra His infatuated
devotion to her, and ill-treatment of Octavia He invades
Parthia, is discomfited and makes a disastrous retreat (7 18)
He attacks Armenia, and celebrates a triumph in Alex-
andria (720) He enlarges Cleopatra's dominions with
Roman provinces Orgies of their court Account of Alex-
andria Octavius increases his popularity in Rome His
campaigns in the Alps, in Dalmatia, and Pannonia (719
721) ^Edileship and public works of Agrippa Popular
indignation against Antonius Rupture between the trium-
virs Antonius divorces Octavia The republic declares
war against Egypt Great armaments on both sides The
battle of Actium, and rout of the Antonians Feeble
attempt at resistance in Egypt Antonius kills himself
Cleopatra seeks to fascinate Octavins Being reserved to
grace his triumph she escapes by self-destruction Octa-



VU1 CONTENTS OF THE THIRD VOLUME.



vius puts to death Cassation and others Henceforth he
affects clemency Apparent change in his disposition
Character of Antonius (A. u. 718-724, B. c. 36-30.) - 286

CHAPTER XXIX.

Octavius reduces Egypt to the form of a province He con-
firms Herod in the sovereignty of Jndea Dispersion of the
Jews in Europe, Asia, and Africa Causes of the disper-
sion, the narrowness of their territory, and its impoverish-
ment by successive conquerors Antiochus Epiphanes
attempts to Hellenize the Jews Progress of Greek ideas
and language in Palestine Jealousy of the natives The
Pharisees and Sadducees represent the national and foreign
parties respectively The Asmonean princes side with the
latter Interference of Rome with Jewish affairs Antipater
the Idumean and his sons govern the country Antonius
grants the kingdom to Herod He obtains the favour of
Octavius His persecution of the Asmonean princes
Death of Mariamne Herod's devotion to Rome - - 350

CHAPTER XXX.

Octavius returns to Rome, A.C. 725, B.C. 29, and triumphs
Festivals and rejoicings Divine honours are paid to him
Peace restored throughout the empire, and the temple of
Janus closed Octavius reflects on his position: pretended
debate on the question of resigning power He receives,
1. the prefix of imperator: 2. the potestas censoria, by
which he reforms the senate, and takes the census: 3. the
principate He offers to resign the imperium, but accepts
it again for four years : with, 4. the proconsular power in
the provinces: 5. the title of Augustus: 6. exemption from
certain laws His sickness Question of the succession
He gives his ring to Agrippa; but recovers He accepts,
7. the potestas tribunitia Commencement of the mon-
archy - - - - - 388

CHAPTER XXXI.

The imperial authority a combination of the prerogatives of
several republican offices Their character and functions
1. the imperium: 2. the principatus : 3. the consulship
and proconsular command : 4. the potestas tribunitia :
5. the potestas consularis : 6. the supreme pontificate :
7. the emperor's legislative and judicial functions His
edicts, rescripts and constitutions His exemptions from
law The lex rcgia The name of Caesar ... 435



HISTOEY



ROMANS UNDER THE EMPIEE,



CHAPTER XXII.

Reflections upon Caesar's assassination. His person, character, and
abilities. Caesar represents the virtues and defects of his age
Influence of the old Etruscan discipline upon the Romans: it
is gradually supplanted by the civilization of the Greeks.
Character of Greek civilization in its decay. Philosophy and
free-thinking introduced into Rome. Decay of the old Italian
faith, and rise of Oriental superstitions. Influence of Greek
ideas upon the principles of Roman law. Liberal tendencies of
Cicero and the contemporary jurisconsults. Influence of Greek
literature upon the Romans. Conflict between the Greek and
Italian spirit: Ennius, Naevius, Lucilius. -Spirit of imitation
diffused over Roman literature. Study of the Greek rhetoricians:
its effect upon Roman eloquence. Decay of military discipline.
Familiarity with the courts and standing armies of the East
demoralizes the proconsuls and the legions. Fatal effects of the
observation of royalty abroad. Concluding remarks.

CESAR was assassinated in his fifty-sixth year. He
fell pierced with twenty-three wounds, only
one of which, as the physician who ex- premature
amined his body affirmed, was in itself
mortal. 1 In early life his health had been delicate,
and at a later period he was subject to fits of epi-
lepsy, which attacked him in the campaign of Africa,
and again before the battle of Munda. 2 Yet the

1 Suet. Jul. 86.

2 Suet. Jul. 45.; Plut. Cffs. 17. ; Dion, xliii. 32.; Appian, B. C. ii.
101. Ccmp. Sir Henry Halford's Essays, p. 61. : " Many attacks of
epilepsy arc symptomatic only of some irritation in the alimentary
canal, or of some eruptive disease about to declare itself, or of oilier
occasional passing ills. So far Julius Ciesar was epileptic .... line

VOL. III. B



2 HISTORY OF THE ROMANS CH. xxn.

energy and habitual rapidity of all his movements
seem to prove the robustness of his constitution, at
least in middle life. It may be presumed that if he
had escaped the dagger of the assassin, he might, in
the course of nature, have attained old age; and
against any open attack his position was impreg-
nable. He might have lived to carry out himself
the liberal schemes which he was enabled only to
project. But it was ordained, for inscrutable
reasons, that their first originator should perish,
and leave them to be eventually effected by a suc-
cessor, within a quarter of a century.

The judgment of the ancients upon this famous
judgment of deed varied according to their interests
o^hisasTa^ and predilections. If, indeed, the republic
had been permanently re-established, its
saviour would have been hailed, perhaps, with un-
mingled applause, and commanded the favour of the
Romans to a late posterity. Cicero, though he
might have shrunk from participating in the deed,
deemed it expedient to justify it, and saluted its
authors in exulting accents, as tyrannicides and
deliverers. 1 But the courtiers of the later Caesars
denounced it as a murder, or passed it over in
significant silence. Virgil, who ventures to pay a
noble compliment to Cato, and glories in the eternal
punishment of Catilina, bestows not a word on the



these attacks were of no consequence in deteriorating his masculine
mind." Napoleon, as is well known, had more than one attack of
the t-ame kind. Michelet's description is picturesque (Hist, de France,
i. 50.): "J'aurais vouluvoir cette blanche etpale figure, fanee avant
I'age par les debauches de Rome, cet homme delicat epileptique,
marchant sous les pluies de la Gaule, a la tete des legions, traversant
nos flenves a la nage, ou bien a cheval, entre les litieres ou ses
secretaires etoient portes." Suetonius adds that Cajsar was dis-
turbed in his latter years by nocturnal terrors.

1 Cic. ad Alt. xiv. 4. 6. 14.; Philipp. i. 14.; de Off. i. 31., ii. 7.,iii.
4.: "Nnm se astrinxit scelere si qui tyrannum occiditquamvis fami-
liarem ? Populo quidem Romano non videtur, qui ex omnibus
praclaris factis illud. pulcherrimum cxistimat."



CH. xxn. UNDER THE EMPIRE. 3

exploit of Brutus. 1 Even Lucan, who beholds in it
a stately sacrifice to the gods, admits the detestation
with which it was generally regarded. 2 Augustus,
indeed, wisely tolerant, allowed Messala to speak in
praise of Cassius ; but Tiberius would not suffer
Cremutius to call him with impunity the last of the
Komaus. 3 Velleius, Seneca, and, above all, Valerius
Maximus, express their abhorrence of the murder in
energetic and manly tones. It was the mortification,
they said, of the conspirators at their victim's supe-
riority, their disappointment at the slowness with
which the stream of honours flowed to them, their
envy, their vanity, anything rather than their
patriotism, that impelled them to it. 4 The Greek
writers, who had less of prejudice to urge them to
palliate the deed, speak of it without reserve as a
monstrous and hateful atrocity. 5 Again, while
Tacitus casts a philosophic glance on the opinions
of others, and abstains from passing any judgment
of his own, Suetonius, in saying that CaBsar perished
by a just retribution, imputes to him no legal crime,
nor extenuates the guilt of his assassins. 6 From

1 Virg. JEn. viii. 668.:

" Et te, Catilina, minaci

Pendentem scopulo Furiarumque ora trementem ;
Secretosque pios ; his dantem jura Catonem."

2 Lucan, vii. 596. :

" Vivat, et ut Brati procumbat victima,regnet."
Comp. vi. 791., and viii. 609.
* Tac. Ann. iv. 34.

4 Veil. ii. 56. ; Senec. de Ira, iii. 30. ; Val. Max. i. 7. 2., iii. 1. 8., &c.

5 Dion, xliv. 1. 20, 21., &c.; Appian, B. C. iv. 134.

6 Suet. .//. 76. : " Jure caesus existimetur." As this writer's
judgment has been cited in justification of the assassination, it may
he well to examine it more closely. On referring to the context of
this passage, it will be seen that Suetonins had no idea of vindicat-
ing the obsolete principle of a barbarous antiquity, that regal usurp-
ation authorized murder (see Liv. ii. 8.), a principle which the
opponents of senatorial a-cendency repudiated and resented; but
only expressed his own personal indignation at the extravagant
vanity of the usurper. Suetonius knew and cared but little for the

B 2



4 HISTORY OF THE ROMANS CH. XXII.

Livy and Floras, and the epitomizer of Trogus, we
may infer that the sentiments expressed by Plutarch
were the same which the most reasonable of the
Romans generally adopted ; the moralizing sage
declared that the disorders of the body politic re-
quired the establishment of monarchy, and that
Caesar was sent by Providence, as the mildest phy-
sician, for its conservation. 1 On the whole, when we
consider the vices of the times, and the general
laxity of principle justly ascribed to the later ages
of Greek and Koman heathenism, it is interesting to
observe how little sympathy was extended by an-
tiquity to an exploit which appealed so boldly to it.

The accounts we have received of Caesar's person
casar-s describe him as pale in complexion, of a
person, fa^ an( j g p are figure, with dark piercing eyes
and an aquiline nose, with scanty hair and without
a beard. His appearance, at least in youth, was

legal traditions of the commonwealth ; but he indulged in splenetic
mortification at greatness and its outward distinctions. At the con-
clusion of his biography he repeats the common remark that all the
assassins perished by violent deaths, evidently with the complacency
of one who thought them jure ccesi, quite as much as their victim.
I subjoin the whole passage.

"Praegravant tamen caetera facta dictaque ejus, ut et abusit*
dominations et jure csesus existimetur. Non cnim honores modo
nimios recepit, ut continuum consulatum, perpetuam dictaturam,
prsefecturamque morum, insuper prgenomen imperatoris, cognomen
Patris Patrice, statuam inter reges, suggestum in orchestra; sed et
ampliora etiam humano fustigio decerni sibi passus est : sedemauream
in curia, et pro tribunal), tensam et ferculum Circensi pompa, templa,
aras, simulacra juxta Deos, pulvinar, flaminem, Lupercos, appella-
tionem mensis a suo nomine."

It was not the dominalio itself, but the abusus dominationis, that
Suetonius deemed worthy of death; his truculent virtue was inflamed,
not by the successive consulships, the perpetual dictatorship. &c.,
least of all by the surname of Father ot his Country, which a
Camillus and a Cicero had borne, but by the divine honours affected
by Cajsar. The words jure CCESUS may be borrowed from a legal
formula, but the writer, 1 repeat, uses them with no reference to a
legal, but to a moral retributive justice.

* Senec. Qu. Nat. v. 18 : "A Tito Livio positum in incerto esse
utrum eum magis nasci reipublicae profuerit an non nasci." Flor. iv.
2. 92.; Eutrop. vi. fin. ; Plut. GOES. 69.



en. xxn. UNDER THE EMPIRE.

remarkably hand&ome, and of a delicate and almost
feminine character. He continued, even in later
years, to be vain of his person, and was wont to hint
that he inherited his beauty from his divine ances-
tress. His baldness, which he strove to conceal by
combing his locks over the crown of his head, was
regarded by the ancients as a deformity, and a slight
puffing of the under lip, which may be traced in
some of his best busts, must undoubtedly have de-
tracted from the admirable contour of his counte-
nance. We can only infer indistinctly his appearance
in early life from the busts and medals which remain
of him ; for all of these belong to the period of his
greatness and more advanced age. In the traits
which these monuments have preserved to us, there
is also great diversity. Indeed, it may be said that
there is a marked discrepancy between the expres-
sion of the busts and that of the medals. The former,
which are assuredly the most life-like of the two,
represent a long thin face, with a forehead rather
high than capacious, furrowed with strong lines,
giving to it an expression of patient endurance and
even suffering, such as might be expected from fre-
quent illness, and from a life of toil not unmingled
with dissipation. It is from the more dubious evi-
dence of the latter that we derive our common
notions of the vivid animation and heroic majesty of
Caesar's lineaments.

The temptations to which the spirited young noble
was exposed from the graces of his person HU 1009e
were not combated by any strictness of moralit y-
moral principle, perhaps not even by a sense of per-
sonal dignity. In periods of great social depravity,
such as especially degraded the class to which Caesar
belonged, it is by the women even more than by the
men that profligacy is provoked and encouraged.
The early age at which he became notorious as the
gallant of the matron Servilia may show that he



;



6 HISTORY OF THE ROMANS CH. xxn.

imbibed the rudiments of vice in the school of a pro-
ficient in intrigue. From that time he persisted
without shame or scruple in the pursuit of pleasure
in whatever shape it seemed to court him. His
amours were celebrated in verse and prose, in the
epigrams of Catullus and the satires of Csecina and
Pitholaus. His countrymen enumerated with horror
the connections which shocked their national preju-
dices. When they repeated from mouth to mouth
that Caesar intrigued with the consorts of a Crassus,
a Pompeius, a Grabinius, or a Sulpicius, they mani-
fested neither sympathy for the injured husband nor
indignation at the heartless seducer, still less disgust
at the sensual indulgence. But the corruption of a
Roman matron, of a wife by the sacred rite of the
broken bread, was a public scandal, hateful both to
gods and men ; it might bring a judgment upon the
nation itself; the culprit was denounced as a national
offender. If such austere sentiments were not uni-
versally felt, it was at least easy to feign them ; the
domestic rival might be conveniently branded as a
public delinquent, and the circulation of the stories
against Caesar's moral conduct, however ample the
occasion he gave for them, was doubtless part of a
system of organized warfare against him. The same
remark applies also to the current tales of his in-
trigues with foreign princesses. These, two, were
stigmatized, not as private indulgences, but as public
crimes. The more constant the attachment he mani-
fested to a stranger, the votary of strange divinities,
the more flagrant the guilt imputed to him. Eunoe,
queen of the Mauretanian Bogudes, was the object
of only a passing desire ; but Cleopatra, as we have
seen, established a lasting sway over him. Though
he despised these prejudices, the foundation of which
he hardly fathomed, and defied the clamour they
excited, he had reason to repent of his indulgences
from the handle they gave for more infamous charges,



CH. xxn. UNDER THE EMPIRE. 7

the only attacks which seem to have seriously an-
noyed him : but which, easily made and common as
they were, require some proof, of which they possess
not a shadow, before I can be expected to record
them against him. 1

The coarse habits of the age were peculiarly ex-
emplified in the debauchery of the table. Excess in
eating as well as in drinking was common, and passed*
almost unreproved. Custom had sanctioned HIS tem-
the abuse, and the union of sage philoso- geSwwityl
phical discussion with indulgence of the vilest glut-
tony must provoke a smile at the "follies of the wise."
Caesar took the manners of the day as he found them ;
but he was not addicted to licentious excess in these
respects, and among the class of riotous young men
who made themselves conspicuous in undermining the
institutions of the country, he alone, in the words of
Cato, came sober to the task of destruction. 2 Nor
was th ere any petty cupidity in the eagerness with
which he grasped the spoils of the conquered pro-
vinces. The pearls of Britain, the statues and gems
of Asia, the hoarded gold of Gades and Antioch, the
slaves of exquisite figure and curious accomplish-
ments, which became the ransom of his victories,
were, in his hands, the instruments of a lofty am-
bition, not objects of sordid avarice. He was more
liberal in giving than rapacious in seizing. Ma-
murra, Balbus and many others, could attest his
readiness to enrich his favourite servants, and in
instituting Octavius his principal heir, he reduced

1 Dion, xliii. 20. These charges seem, after all, to rest solely on
the authority of C. Memmius, a scurrilous profligate (Suet. Jul. 49,
73), from whom they were taken by Catullus, Cicero, and others.
For the character of Memmius comp. Ovid, Trist. ii. 433.; Plin.
Epist. v. 3. ; Cell. xix. 9.

2 Suet. .//. 53. : " Verbum M. Catonis est, tinnm ex omnibus
Caesarem ad evertendam republican! sobrium accessisse." He goes
on to tell a pleasing story in illustration of his moderation. Comp.
Veil. ii. 41.: "Magno illi Alexandro sed sobrio neque iracundo
simillirnus."



8 HISTORY OF THE ROMANS CH. xxil.

the inheritance by a legacy of 300 sesterces to every
Boman citizen. 1

The gentleness of Caesar's manners in his inter-
course with his associates presents an ami-

Ilis clemency. . , - ,LI i r

able feature in the character ol a man so
much their superior. Few public men ever made or re-
tained so many personal friends, and in this respect
he is favourably contrasted with the most eminent
of his rivals, Crassus and Pompeius. The clemency
which he exhibited towards his adversaries cannot, in
fairness, be ascribed merely to policy. The Romans
themselves never so disparaged it, and when they
remembered how effectively his successor wielded the
sword of proscription for the maintenance of his
power, they might reasonably regret and applaud the
mildness of their elder master. We may venture,



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