Charles Rollin.

The ancient history of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians ..., Volume 8 online

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exercise, and walks proportionate to the ma^tude of the ship
In them were gardens and plants of all kinds, disposed in wond«r-




fal order. Pipes, some of hardened clay, and others of leao, con
veyed water all round to refresh them. There were also arbours
ofivy and vines, that had their roots in great vessels filled with
earth. These vessels ^rere watered in the same manner as the
gardens. The arbours served to shade the walks.

After these came the apartment of Venus, with three beds.
Tliis was floored with agates and other precious stones, the finest
that could be found in the island. The wails and roof were of
cypress wood. The windows were adorned with ivory, paintings,
and small statues. In another apartment was a Ubrary, at the top
of which, on the outside, was fixed a sun-dial.

There was also an apartment with three beds for a bath, in which
were three great brazen coppers, and a bathing- vessel, made of a
single stone of various colours. This vessel contained two hundred
and fifly quarts. At the ship's head was a great reservoir of water,
which held a hundred thousand quarts.

All round the ship, on the outside, were Atlases of six cubits, oi
nine feet, in height, which supported the sides of the ship ; these
Atlases were at equal distances from each other. The ship was
adorned on all sides with paintings, and had eight towers propor-
tioned to its size ; two at the head, two at the stern, and four in the
middle, of equal dimensions. Upon these towers were parapets,
from which stones might be discharged upon the ships of an enemy
that should approach too near. Each tower was guarded by four
younff men completely armed, and two archers. The inside of them
was nlled with stones and arrows.

Upon the side of the vessel, well stre»^hened with planks, was
a ]6vA of rampart, on which was an engme to discharge stones,
made by Archimedes : it threw a stone of three hundred weight, and
an arrow of twelve cubits (eighteen feet) the distance of a stadium,
or a hundred and twenty-five paces from it.

The ship had three masts, at each of which were two machines
to discharge stones. There also were the hooks and masses of lead
to throw upon such as approached. The whole ship was surround-
ed with a rampart of iron to keep ofi* those who should attempt to
board it. All around were iron grapplings (carviy) which, being
thrown by machines, grappled the vessels of the eriomy, and drew
them close to the ship, from whence it was easy to destroy them.
On each of the sides were sixty young men completely armed, and
as many about the masts, and at the machines for throwing stones.

Though the hold of this ship was extremely deep, one man suf-
ficed for clearing it of all water, with a machine made in the nature
of a screw, invented by Archimedes. An Athenian poet of that
name made an epigram upon this superb vessel, for which he was
well paid. Hiero sent him a thousand medimni of com as a reward,
and caused them to be carried to the port of Pirseus. The rncdim*
nitf , according to Father Montfaucon, is a measure that contains siii



basheli. This epigram J9 come down to 08. The value of vene
was known at that time in Syracuse.

Hiero having found that there was no port in Sicily capable of
contaiDing this vessel, except some where it could not lie at anchor
without danger, resolved to make a present of it to king Ptolemy,*
and sent it to Alexandria. There was attluittime a great dearth of
com throughout all Egypt.

Several other transports of less burden attended this great ship.
Three hundred thousand quarters of com were put on board them»
with ten thousand great earthen jars of salted fish, twenty thou-
sand quintals (or two millions of pounds) of salt meat, twenty
tliousand bundles of different clothes, without including the provi-
fiions for the ships' crews and officers.

To avoid too much prolixity, I have retrenched some part of the
description which Atheiiseuj has left us of this great ship. I could
have wished, that, to have given us a better idea of it, he had men-
tioned the exact dimensions of it. Had he added a word upon the
benches of oars, it would have cleared up and determined a ques-
tion, which, without it, must for ever remain doubtful and obscure.
A. M. 3788. Hiero's fidelity was put to a very severe trial,

Aut. J. c. 216. after the bloody defeat of the Romans in the battle
of Canns, which was followed by an almost universal defection of
their allies.

But even the laying waste of his dominions by the Carthaginian
troops, which their fleet had landed in Sicily, was not capable of
shaking his resolution. He was ordy afflicted to see that the con-
tagion bad spread even to his own family. f He had a son named
Gelon, who married Nereis the daughter of Pyrrhus, by whom he
had several children, and amongst others Hieronymus, of whom we
shall soon speak. Gelon, despising his fatlier's great age, and set-
ting no value on the alliance of the Romans after their last disgrace
at Cannie, had declared openly for the Carthaginians. He had al-
ready armed the multitude, and solicited the allies of Syracuse to
join him ; and would| perhaps have occasioned great trouble in
Sicily, if a sudden and unexpected death had not intervened. It
A. M. 3789. happened so opportunely, that his father was sus-

Ani. J. c. 215. pected of having promotea it. He did not survive
his son long, and died at the age of fourscore and ten years, infinite-
ly regretted by his people, after having reigned fifty- four years.

* There in reason to believe this was Ptolemy Philadelphus. t Liv. 1. xxiii. n. 30,

;lfovf88Ctqae inSldiiA res, nisi mors, aded opportuna ut patrcmq uoque suspicione

nlspeigeret, amuuitem eummulUtiuiiaeiu solliciuntemi|ue socios, absumpsisscL Lm.


19 HISlXttT OP


BscT. t Hleraoynm, gnmitaoa of Hiero, Mieceedi him, and eauant him to be icgret
tftd by his vices and craelty. He is killed in a conspiracy. Barbarous murder of tha
princesses. Hippocrates and Epicydes possess themselves of the government of Bj
racuse, and declare for tlie Carthaginians as Hieronymua had done

Th£ death of Hiero occasioned great revolutions in Sicily. The
kingdom was fallen into the hands of Hieronymus his grandson, a
young* prince incapable of making a wise use of his independence,
and far from possessing strength to resist the seducing allurements
of sovereign power, liiero's apprehensions, that the flourishing
condition in which he left his kingdom would soon change under
an infant king, suggested to him the thoiight and desire of restor-
ing their Uberty to the Syracusans. But his two daughters opposed
that design with all their influence ; from the hope, that the young
prince would have only the title of king, and that they should have
all the authority, in conjunction with their husbands, Andranodo-
rus and Zoippus, who were to hold the first rank amongst his
guardians.! It was not easy for an old man of ninety to hold out
against the caresses and arts of those two women, who besieged
him day and night, to preserve the freedom of his mind in the
midst of their pressing and assiduous insinuations, and to sacrifice
with courage the mterests of liis family to those of the public.

To prevent as far as possible the evils he foresaw, he appointed
nim fifteen guardians, who were to form his council ; and earnestly
desired them, at his death, never to depart from the alliance with
the Romans, to which he had inviolably adhered for fifty years,
and tu teach the youn^ prince to tread in his steps, and to follow
the principles in which lie had been educated till then.

The king dying after these arrangements, the guardians whom
he had appointed for his grandson immediately summoned the as-
sembly, presented the young prince to the people, and caused the
ivill to be read. A small number of people, expressly placed to ap-
plaud it, clapped their hands, and raisea acclamations of joy. All
the rest, in a consternation equal to that of a family who have
lately lost a good father, kept a mournful silence, which, sufh-
ciently expressed their grief for their recent loss, and their ap-
prehension of what was to come. His funeral was afterwards
solemnized, and more honoured by the sorrow and tears of his
subjects, than the care and regard of his relations for his me-

Anaranodorus's first care was to remove all the other guardians,
by telling them roundly, the prince was of age to govern for him-
self. '

* Paerum, vixdum libertatem, nedum dominationem, modlc^ iaturum. Liv.
I Non fkcile erat nonagesimum Jam agenti annum, circumsesso dies noctesque mu-
lebribtis btanditiis, libprare anlmom. et converlere ad pubiicam privata curam. Lh,
t Funiu fit leginni magis amore dvlom et carttate, ^u&m car& sttonui cetebra. Lit



He was st that time near fifteen yean old. So that Andrano-
donis, being the first to renounce the {ruardianship held by him in
common with many colleagues, united m his own person ail their
power. The wisest arrangements made by princes at their deaths,
are oflen little regarded, and seldom executed afterwards.

The best and most moderate prince ui the world,* succeeding a
king so well beloved by his subjects, as Hiero had been, would
have found it very difficult to console them for the loss they had
sustained. But Hieronymus, as if he strove by his vices to make
him still more regretted, no sooner ascended the throne, than he
made the people sensible how much all things were altered. While
neither Hiero, nor Gelon his son, had ever distinguished themselves
from the other citizens bv their habits, or any outward ornaments,
Hieronymus was presently seen in a purple robe, wi^h a diadem on
his head, and surrounded by a troop of armed guards. Some-
times he affected to imitate Dionysius, the Tyrant, m coming out
of his palace in a chariot drawn by four white horses. All the rest
of his conduct was suitable to this equipage :f a visible contempt
for all the. world, haughtiness and disdain in hearing, an affectation
of saying disobliging things, so difficult of access, that not only
strangers, but even his guardians, coul() scarce approach him ; a
refinement cf taste in discovering new methods of excess ; a cru-
elty so enormous, as to extinguish all sense of humanity in him :
this odious disposition of the young king terrified the people to
such a degree, that even some of hS guardians, to escape his cru-
elty, either put themselves to death, or condemned themselves to
voluntary banishment.

Only three men, Andranodorus and Zoippus, both Hiero*s sons-
in-law, and Thraso, had a great freedom of access to the young
king. He paid little more notice to them than to others ; but as
the two first openly declared for the Carthaginians, and the latter
for the Romans, that difference of sentiments, and very warm dis-
putes, which were frequently the consequence of it, drew upon
them that prince's attention.

About this time a conspiraev against the life of Hieronymus
happened to be discovered. One of the prmcipal conspirators,
named -Theodotus, was accused. Being put to the torture, he con-
fessed' the crime as far as it regarded himself; but all the violence
of the most cruel torments could not make him betray his accom-
plices. At length, as if no longer able to support the pains in-
flicted on him, he accused the king's best friends, though innocent,
amongst whom he named Thraso, as the ringleader of the whole

* Vix qaidem uUI bono moderatoqae regi fiicUis erat favor apud SjrraeusanoB, mic-
cedent! tants carilati Hieronis. Verum enimvero Hieronymns, velut suis viuU desi-
derabi:em efllcere vellet avum, primo statim conspectu, omnia quam diaparia eneut,
oitendit. JJo.

t Hunc tarn raperbum apparatum habkoinqae eonvanlentet tequeDantar eontamptoa
snnium bominam, luperba auras, oontiimeHofla dicta, rarl aditw, noa aUenia mod*
MdtalQribtti ettam : IlUdbiMi iiov«i Inhumana cnidaUtai. JUv.



!• EOSTOn ov

enterpriie; adding, that they ehoidd never have engaged in it» if a
man of his credit had not been at their head. The zeal he had al«
ways expressed for the Roman interests rendered the evidence
probable, and he was accordingly put to death. Not one of the
accomplices, daring their companion's being tortured, either fled or
concealed himself, so much they relied upon the fidelity of Theo-
dotus, and such w^as his fortitude to keep the secret inviolable.

The death of Thraso, who was the sole support of the alliance
with the Romans, left the field open to the partisans of Carthage.
Hieronymus despatched ambassadors to Hannibal, who sent biurk
a young Carthaginian officer, of illustrious birth, named also Han-
nibal, with Hippocrates and Epicydes, natives of Carthage, but
descended from the Syracusans by their father. After the treaty
with Hieronymus was concluded, the young officer returned to his
general ; the two others continued with ube kinff by Hannibal's
permission. The conditions of the treaty were, that after having
driven the Romans out of Sicily, of which they fully assured them*
selves, the river Himcra, which also divides the island, should be
* the boundary of their respective dominions. Hieronymus, puffed
up by the praises of his fiatterers, even demanded, some time after*
that all Sicily should be given up to him, leaving the Carthaffiniane
Italy for their part. The proposal appeared idle and rash ; but
Hannibal gave very little attention to it, having no other view at
that time than of drawing off the young king from the paity of the

Upon the first rumour of this treaty, Appius, prtetor of Sicily,
sent ambassadors to Hieronymus to renew the alliance made by hia
grandfather with the Romans. , That proud prince received them
with great contempt ; asking them, with an air of raillery and in-
sult, what had passed at the battle of Canns ; that Hannibal's ani-
bassadors had related incredible thmgs respecting it ; that he waa
happy in an opjwrtunity of knowing the truth from their mouths,
that he might theuce determine upon the choice of his allies. The
Romans made answer, that they would return to him, when he
had learnt to treat ambassadors seriously, and with respect ; and,
after having cautioned rather than desired him not to change sides
too rashly, they withdrew.

At length his cruelty, and the other vices to which he blindly
abandoned himself, drew upon him an unfortunate end. Those who
had formed the conspiracy mentioned before, pursued their scheme;
and having- found a favourable opportunityfor the execution of their
enterprise, killed him in the city of the Leontines, on a journey he
made from Syracuse into the country.

We here evidently see the difference between a kmg and a ty-
rant ; and that it is not in guards or arms that the security of a
prince consists, but m the affection of his subjects. Hiero, from
oeing convinced, that those who have the law m their hands for the
government of the people, ought always to govern themselves by


the laws, behaved in such a maimer, that it mi^ht be said the faiwi
and not Hiero, reigned. He believed himself nch and powerftd for
no other end than to do good, and to render others happy. He had
no occasion to take precautions for the security of his life : he had
always the surest guard about him, the love of his people: and Sy«
racuse was afraid of nothing so much as of losing nim. Hence he
was lamented at his death as the common father of his country*
Not only their mouths but hearts were long after filled with mt
name, and incessantly blessed his memory. Hieronymus, on the
contrary, wha had no other rule of conduct than violence, who re-
garded all other men as bom solely for himself, and valued himself
upon governing them not as subjects but slaves, led the most
wretched life in the world, if to pass his days in continual appre«
liension and terror, can be called living. As he trusted nobody,
nobody placed any confidence in him. Those who were nearest
his person were the most exposed to his suspicions and cruelty, and
thought they had no other security for their own lives, than by
putting an end to liis. Thus ended a reign of short duration, but
abounding with disorders, injustice, and oppression.

Appius * who foresaw the consequence of his death, gave the
senate advice of all that had passed, and took the necessary pre*
cautions to preserve that part of Sicily which belon^d to the Ro-
mans. They, on their side, perceiving the war in Sicily was likely

A. M. 37no. ' to become important, sent Marcellus thither, who
Ant. i c. 214. hjij been appointed consul with Fabius, in the be-

ginnine of the fifth year of the second Punic war, and had distin-
s^uished himself gloriously by his successes sgainst Hannibal.

When Hieronymus was killed, the soldiers, less out of afl^tion
for him, than a certain natural respect for their kings, had thoughts
at first of avenging his death upon the conspirators. But the grate-
ful name of liberty by which they were flattered, and the hope that
was given them of the division of the tyrant's treasures amongst
them, and of additional pay, with the recital of his horrid crimes
^nd shameful excesses, all together appeased their first heat, and
t:hanged their disposition in such a manner that they lefl, without
interment, the body of that prince for "whom they had just before
expressed so warm a regret.

As soon as the death of Hieronymus was known at Syracuse,
Andranodorus seized the Isle, wliich was part of the city, with the
pitadol, and such other places as were most proper for his defence
^ it, putting good garrisons into them. Theodotus and Sosis.
heads of the conspiracy, having left their accomplices with the
&nny, to keep the soldiers quiet, arrived soon after at the city,
^hey made tiKmselves masters of the quarter Achradina, where, by
ihowing the tyrant's bloody robe, with his diadem, to the people.

• LUr. L ulv. o. Si-^3S^



and exhorting them to take arms for the defence of their liberty,
they soon saw themselves at the head of a numerous body.

The whole city was in confusion. The next day, at sun-rise, all
the people, armed and unarmed, ran to the quarter Achradina, where
the senate was holden, which had neither assembled nor been con-
sulted upon any affair since Hiero*s death. Polyienus, one of the
senators, spoke to the people with ^at freedom and moderation.
He represented, << that having experienced the indignities and mise-
ries of slavery, they were more sensibly affected with them; but
that as to the evUs occasioned by civil discord, they had rather
beard them spoken of by their fathers, than been acquainted with
them themselves: that he commended their readiness in taking
arms, and should praise them still more, if they did not proceed to
use them, till the last extremity : that at present it was his advice
to send deputies to Andranodorus, and to let him know he must
submit to the senate, open the fates of the Isle, and withdraw his
garrisons: that if he persistefTin his usurpation, it would be ne-
cessary to treat him with more rigour than Hieronymus had ex-

This deputation at first made some impression upon him; whether
it were, that he still retained a respect for the senate, and was moved
with the unanimous concurrence of the citizens: or whether th^
best fortified part of the Isle having been taken from him by
treachery and surrendered to the Syracusans, that loss gave him
just apprehensions. But his wife Demarata,* Hiero's daughter, a
haughty and ambitious princess, having taken him aside, put him in
•mind of the famous saying of Dionysius the Tyrant, <* That it was
never proper to quit the saddle (i. e. the tyranny,) tiU pulled off the
horse by the heels: that a great fortune might be renounced in a
moment, but that it would cost abundance of time and pains to at-
tain it ; that it was therefore necessary to endeavour to gain time;
and whilst he amused the senate by ambiguous answers, to treat
privately with the soldiers at Leontiuro, whom it would be easy to
bring over to his interest by the attraction of the king's treasures in
his possession."

Andranodorns did not entirely reject this counsel, nor think pro-
per to follow it without reserve. He chose a mean between both.
He promised to submit to the senate, in expectation of a more fa-
vourable opportunity ; and the next day having thrown open the
gates of the Isle, repaired to the quarter Achradina; and there
afi,er having excused his delay and resistance, from the fear he had
entertained of being involved in the tyrant's punishment, as his
uncle, he declared that he was come to put his person and interest
into the hands of the senate. Then turning toward^ the tyrants

* Sed evoeatumeam ab lenxin Demarata uxor, filia Hieronis, inflata adhue regtii
•nimis ac moliebri spirita, admonet MDpe usarpatat Dioaysii tyrannl voda : qpa, padl
Hi tt^!uni, non inwdemeia eqtioi nUiM|aarc ^ranaidam dizerU debera.



burdercn, and Addrening himself to TheodotuB and Sonsi <* Y«a
have done," said he ^a memorahle action. Bat, helieve me, yonr
glory is only begun, and has not yet attained its highest pitch. If
you do not take care to establish peace and union among the citi-
zens, the state is in great danger of expiring, and of being destroy-
ed at the very moment she begins to taste the blessings of hberty."
After this discourse, he laid the keys of the Isle and of the king's
treasures at their feet. The whole city was highly rejoiced on this
occasion, and the temples were thronged during the rest of the day
with iniinite numbers of people, who went thither to return thanks
to the gods for so happy a change of affairs.

The^nextday the senate being assembled according to the ancient
custom, magistrates were appomted, amongst whom Andranodoms
was elected one of the first, with Theodotus and Sosis, and soHie
others of the conspirators who were absent.

On the other side, Hippocrates and Epicydes, whom Hieronymus
had sent at the head of two thousand men, to endeavour to excite
troubles in the cities which continued >to adhere to the Romans,
seeing themselves, upon the news of the tyrant's death, abandoned by
the soldiers under their command, returned to Syracuse, where they
demanded to be escorted in safety to Hannibal, having no longer
any business in Sicily, after the death of him to whom they had
been sent by that general. The Syracusans were not sorry to part
with those two strangers, who were of a turbulent, factious dispo-
sition, and well experienced in military affairs. There is in most
affairs a decisive moment, which never returns after having been
once let slip. Tiie negligence in assigning the time for their de-*
parture, gave them an opportunity of^insinuating themselves into
the favour of tlie soldiers, who esteemed them upon account of
theii abilities, and of setting them against the senate, and the bet-
ter inclined part of the citizens.

Andranodorus, whose wife's ambition would never let him rest,
and who, till then, had covered his designs with smooth dissimu-
lation, beheving it a proper time for disclosing them, conspired
with Themistus, Gelon's son-in-law, to seize the sovereignty. He
communicated his views to a comedian named Ariston, from whom
he kept nothing secret. That profession was not at all dishonour-
able among the Greeks, and was exercised by persons of no ignoble
condition. Ariston believing it his duty, at it really was, to sacri-
fice his friend to his country, discovered the conspiracy. Andra-
nodorus and '^hemistus were immediately killed, by order of the
other magistrates, as they entered the senate. The people rose,
and threatened to revenge their deaths ; but were deterred from it
by the sight of the dead bodies of the two conspirators, which were
thrown out of the senate-house. They were then informed of their
pernicious designs; to which all the misfortunes of Sicily were
•scribed, rather than to the wickedness of Hieronymus, who being
only a youth, had acted enthrely by their counsels. They insinuated



tint hiB ffoatdUiv and tutors had reigned in his name ; that thej
ought to nave been cut off before Hieronymas,or at least with him;
that impunity had carried them on to commit new crimes, and in-
duced them to aspire to the tyranny: that not being able to succeed
in their design by force, they had employed dissimulation and per-
fidy; that neither favours and honours had been capable of over-

Online LibraryCharles RollinThe ancient history of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians ..., Volume 8 → online text (page 3 of 39)