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

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time. So that, says CJcero,| in concluding this account, the great-
est city of Greece, and the most flourishing of old in the study of
the sciences, would not have knoT^n the treasure it possessed, if a
man, bom in a country which it considered almost as barbarous, a
man of Arpinum, had not discovered for it the tomb^f its citizen,
so highly distinguished by the force and penetration of his mind.

We are obliged to Cicero for having left us this curious and ele-
gant account : but we cannot easily pardon hun for the contemp-
tuous manner in which he speaks at first of Archimedes. It is iu
the beginning, where, intending to compare the unhappy life of
Dionysius the Tyrant with the felicity of one 4)assed in sober vir-
tue, and aboundii^ with wisdom, he sajrs, " I will not compare the
lives of a Plato or an Archytas,} persons of consummate learning
and wisdom, with that of Dionysius, the most horrid, the most
miserable, and the most detestable, that can be imagined. I
shall have recourse to a man of his own city, a little obscure per-
mmy who lived many years after him. I shall produce him from his
dust,|| and brinff him upon the stage with his rule and compasses
in his hand." I say nothmg of the birth of Archimedes, his great-

* Clc. Tuac QuoMt. I. v. n. 64. «L f E^g»««» adopting an expre«ion of Arelii-


t Ita noliiUflslnia Gnecia; civltas, quondam verd etiam doctissima, sul civla tmiui
aciiUssiini inonuiuentuin ignorftsset, nisi ab hoininc Arpiiiate didicis^t.

% Noil ergo jam ciun hujus vitA, qua tetrius, niiserius, detestabiliua excogitare nihil
pnasum, Plauuiis aui Archyte vitam ooroparabo, doctorum bomlnum ct pland sapien-
mm. Ex eftdem urbe iiumiukm homuhciomkm d pulvere et radio ezciiabo. aui multii
annis pSsi full, Archiniedem. ^^

11 ile neana Uie dutt wed bf georaetriciuia



( was of a different class. But ought the greatest geometri-
cian of antiquity, whose sublime discoveries have in all a^es been
the admiration of the learned, be treated by Cicero as a Cttle and
obscure person, as if he had been only a common artificer employ-
ed in making machines? unless it be, perhaps, that the Romans,
with whom a taste for geometry and such speculative sciences
never gained much ground, esteemed nothing great but what re-
lated to government and pohcy.

Orabunt cauns mettds, ccelique meatut

Describent radio, et surgentia sidera dicent :

Tu regere knperio populos, Romane, memento.^Ftrj^. JE». vU

Tjet others better mould the running maw

Of meials, and inform the breathing braa,

And soften into flesh a marble face ;

Plead better at the bar, describe the slciea.

And when the stars descend and when they rise ;

But, Rome, 'tis thine alone with awAil sway

To rule mankind, and make the world obey ;

Disposing peace and war thy own majestic way.-'-l>ry(ira.

This is the Abb^ Fraguier's reflection in the short dissertation
he has left us upon this passage oi' Cicero.*

Sommaiy of the history of Syracoiew

The island of Sicily, with the greatest part of Italy extending
between the two seas, composed what was called Magna Grscia,
in opposition to Greece, properly so called, wliich had peopled all
those countries by its colonies.

A M 3295 Syracuse was the most considerable city of Si-

cily, and one of the most powerful of all Greece.
It was founded by Archias the Corinthian, m the third year of the
seventeenth Olympiad.

The first two ages of its history are very obscure, and therefore
I pass over them in silence. It does not begin to be known till
aner the reign of Gelon, and furnishes in the sequel many great
events, for the space of more than two hundred years. During all
that time it exhibits a perpetual alternative of slavery under the
tyrants, and liberty under a popular government ; till Syracuse is
at len^h subjected to the Romans, and makes part of their em
pire. 1 have treated all these events, except the last, in the order
of time. But as they are cut into different sections, and dispersed
into dLSerent books, I have thought proper to unite them here in
one point of view, that their series and connexion might be the
more evident, from their being shown together and in eenei;al,
and the places pointed out, where they are treated with due ex

* Itanolnor tha Academy of IiwcrlptioiM, vuL U

itized by Google.


A If 3s» OmiA>v. The Carthafimaiu, m concert with

* Xerxes, having attacked the Greeks who inhabit-
ed Sicily, whilst that prince was employed in making an irruption
. fDto Greece; Gelon, who had made himself master of Syracuse,
obtained a celebrated victory over the Carthaginians, the very day
of the battle of ThermopyltB. Amilcar, their j|reneral, was killed
in this battle. Historians speak differently of hu death, which has
occasioned my falling into a contradiction. Fot on one side, 1 sup-
pose, with Diodorus Siculus,* that he was killed by the Sicilians m
the battle ; and on the other I say, ailer Herodotus, that to avoid
the shame of surviving his defe^, he threw himself into the pile
m which he had sacrinced many human victims.

Gelon, upon returning from his victory, repaired
to the assembly without arms or guards, to give
the people an account of his conduct. He was chosen king una-
tiimoud[y. He reigned five or six years, solely employed in the
truly royal care of makine^ his people iiappy. See vob. i. and iii.
3532. HiERo L Hiero, the eldest of Gelon's brothers^

succeeded him. The beginninj^ of his rei^n was
worthy of ^eat praise. Simonides and Pindar vied with each other
in celebratmg him. The latter part of it did not answer the for-
mer. He reigned eleven years. $ee vol. iii.

Thrasybulus. Thrasybulus his brother buc-
* * ceeded him. He rendered himself odious to all his

subjects by his vices and cruelty. They expelled him the thrune
and city, after a reign of <Mte year. See vol« iii.

Times qf Liberty^

A M 3544 After his cxpubion, Syracuse and all Sicily en

joyed their liberty for the space of almost sixty

An annual festival was instituted to celebrate the day u^ion
which their Hberty was re-established.

Syracuse attacked by the A^ierdans*

A. M. 3588.

During this interval, the Athenians, animated by
the warm exhortations of Alcibiades, turned their
arms against Syracuse: this was in the sixth year of the Pelopon-
nesian war^ How fatal the event of this war was to the Athenians,
may be seen in vol. iiL

A M 3598. DroNYsius tke elder. The reign of this prince

is famous for its length of thirty-eight years ; and
still more for the extraordinary events with which it was attended
Se4 vols, i and iv

• In ^ie bU(lM]r«r tbe CanOacintaw.


A. M. 365a

snucusE. m

A. M 3633L ' IHonyfliiu the younger, DionyBras, son of the
elder Dionysius, succeeded him. He contracts a
particular intimacy with Plato, and has frequent conversations
with him ; who had come to his court at the request of Dion, the
near relation of Dionysius. He did not long profit from the wise
precepts of that philosopher, and soon abandoned himself to all the
vices and excesses which attend tyranny*

A M ^»AA Besieged by Dion, he escapes from the citadel,

A. M. d044. ^^ ^^^^^ .^^ j^y

A M 364(1 Dion's excellent qualities. He is assassinated

in his own house by Callippus.
A M 3047 Thirteen montfae after the death of Dion, Hip*

parinus, brother of Dionysius the younger, expels
Callippus, and establishes himself in Syracuse. During the two
years of his reign, Sicily is agitated by great commotions.

A M. 3SM Dionysius* the youn^r, taking advantage of

those troubles, re-ascends the throne ten years af«
ter having quitted it.

At last, reduced by Timoleon, he retires to Co

A. M. 3857. j^^jj g^ ^^jg ^ ^^ j^^

Timet of lAberly*

Timoleon restores liberty to Syracuse. He
passes the rest of his life there in a glorious retire-*
ment, beloved and honoured by all the citizens and strangers See
vol. iv.
This interval of liberty was of no long duration.

Agathocles. Agathocles, in a short time
A. M. 36a>. makes himself tyrant of Syracuse. See vol. i.
He commits unparalleled cruelties.

He forms one of the boldest designs related in lustory ; carries
the war into Africa ; makes himself master of the strongest places,
and ravages the whole country.

After various events, he perishes miserably. He reigned about
twenty-eight years.

Timet of Liberty*

Syracuse revived again for some time, and tast-
A. M. 3r3i3. ^j ^^jj j^y ^jjg g^^^g ^f liberty.

But she suffered much from the Carthaginians, who disturbed
her tranquillity by continual wars.

She called in Pyrrhus to her aid. The rapid
A. M. 3726. success of his arms at first gave them great hopes,
which soon vanished. Pyrrhus, by a sudden retreat, plunged the
Syracnsans into new misfortunes. Sec to., i.




HrcRoII. They wero not Imppy and in tnnouiUity till the rag;ii
of Hiero II. which was very loo^, and almotft always pacific

HiBKONTMus. He scarce reig^d one year. Hts death was
followed with great troubles, and the taking of Syntcuse by Mar*

After that period, what passed in Sicily to its total reduction in
little remarkable. There were still some remains of war foment-
ed in it by the partisans of tyranny, and the CarthaginiaDs who
supported them ; but those wars were unproductive of any event
of conseonence, and Rome was soon absolute mistress of all Sici-
ly. Half the island had been a Roman province ever since the
treaty which put an end to the first Punic war. By that treaty,
<Sicily was divided into two parts ; the one 'Continued in the pos<
4^8sion of the Romans ; and the other under the government of
Hiero; which last part, after the surrender of Syracuse, feU nlao
into their hands.

BECT. ni.

Bdloctioiu vpon the iovenuneiK and charaaer of the Byracunna.

By the taking of Syracuse, aH Sicily became a province of the
Roman empire: but it was not la^eated as the Spaniards and Car
thaginians were afterwards, upon whom a certain tribute was im*
posed as the reward of the victors, and punishment of the vanquished:
Quati vidorias prcemitim^ ac pcma belli. Sicily , ki submitting to the
Roman people,''' retained all her ancient rights and customs, and
obeyed them upon the same conditions she l*ad obeyed her kings.
And she certainly well deserved that privilege and distinction. She
was the firstf of all the foreign nations that had<3ntered into alliance
and amity with the Romans; the first conquest their aims had the
glory to make out of Italy^ and the first country that had given them
the grateful experience of commanding a foreign people. The
^eatest part of the Sicilian dties had expressed an luiexanpled
attachment, fidelity, and nSflfection, for the Romans. The ishmd was
afterwards a kind of step for their troops to pose over into Aftica;
and Rome would not so easily have reduced the fomfidable power
of the Carthaginians, if ^cily had not served it as a magazine,
abounding with provisions, and a secure retrealt for tfa^r fleets.

* Sidl'e f ivitatcs etc in amichiam reeepimus, iit eodem Jure eseentf 'quo fuisMni;
•eadeni cntiditian« populo %.. parerent qu& 8u4s antea panitesent. Orr.

t Omnium nattonum exterorum princeps SIcilia ae ad amicitiam fidomqiie populi R.
appltcuil : prima oinniam, id quod ornamentum imperH est, provincia est appDitata :
pnma docult-majnres no9tro«,'q«:Vin piiEclannn esset, exteria gentibus intperare — Itaque
iiiajuribus nostria in Africam «x liAc provincid gradus imperii factus est. Neque «riim
uni facil6 opes Caitliaeincs tantas concidissent, nisi illud, et rei frunientarts flubsMKuinf
«t receptacttlom classibiiB noiuia pateret Quare P. Africanus, tiartbaghie delclA.
Sloiloniin urbes sigiils monumenUsque pulcbenimiB eaoraavit ; ut, quoa victori& populi
R. betari arbitrabatur, apud eoa monumenta victorie plarlma oollooaret Cic Vtrr X


Hence, after the taking and rain of Carthage, Seipio Africanoa
thought hiniseJf bound to adorn the cities of Sicily with a great
number of excellent paintings and curious statues; in order that a
people who were so highly gratified with the success of the Roman
arms, might be sensible of its effects, and retain illustrious menu*
ments of their victories amongst them.

Sicily would have been hap^y in being governed by the Romans^
if they had always given her such magistrates as Cicero, as weB
acquainted as he with the obligations ot his function, and Uke him
intent upon the due discharge of it. It is highly pleasing to hear
him explain himself upon the subject; which he does in his defence
of Sicily against Verres.

After having invoked the gods as witnesses of the sincerity of the
sentiments he is going to express, he says: ^^ In all"^ the employmentu
with which the Roman people have honoured me to this day, I have
ever thought myself obliged, by the most sacred tieb xff religioni
wortliily to discharge the duties of them. When I was made quea-
tor, I looked upon that dignity, not as a gift conferred upon me, but
as a deposit confided to my vigilance and fidelity. When I waa
afterwarda sent to act in that office in Sicily, I thought all eyes were
turned upon me, and that my person and administration were in »
manner exhibited as a spectacle to the view of all the world: and
in this thought, I not only denied myself all pleasures of an extraor*
dinary kind, but even those which are authorized by nature and
necessity. I am now intended for cedile. I call the gods to witness,
that how honourable soever this dignity appears to me, I have too
just a sense of its weight, not to have more solicitude and disquiet,
than joy and pleasure, from it ; so much do I desire to make it appear,
that it was not bestowed on me by chance, or the necessity of being
fUled up, but confided deservedly by the choice and discernment of
my country."

All the Roman governors were far from being of this character;
and Sicily, above all other provmces, experieuced, as Cicero some
lines after reproaches Verres,! that they were ahnost all of them

* O dii iromortaleft— Ita miiii meam vfduntatem Bpcmque reliqiic viue vestra pcpu-
lique R. existiiiiatio comprobet, ut eeo quoe adhuc milii magistratuR popul'us B. manda-
vit, sic eoB accepi, ut ok' omnium officiorum obstrlngi religion*; arbitiarer. Ita qua-stoa
sum fectus, ut niih) honorcim ilium non tam datum quam creditum ac comniissuni pu-
tareni. Sic obtiuui qussturam in provincift, ut omnium oculos in me unuin conj^tiv
arbitrarer : ut me questuramqiie meam quasi in aliquoorbis terras Uiiairo versari exis-
timarem ; ut omnia semper, qus jucunda videntur esse, non modd his extraordinarii*
cupiditotihus, sed etiam ipsi naturo* ac necessitati denegarem. Nunc sum designutua
Rdiiia— Ita mibi deos omnes propiiios esse velim, ut tametei mihi jucundisvimus eni
honos populi, lamen nequaqnam tantum rapio voMiptatis, quantum solicitudinis ct
laborls, at hsc ipsa xdilitas, non quia necesse fuit alicui cnndidato data, sed quia tie
oportuerit recie coUocata, et judicio populi digno in loco ponta esse rideatur. Gre. Verr,
7. n. 35—37.

t Nonquam tibi venH in mentem, non tlM idclrco Tasced et socurcfi, et tantam inpertt
vim, tantaaiquc omamentorura omntom digniutem datam ; ut earum rcrum vi et auo*
toritsle omnia repagula juris, pudoris, et officii perftingeros ; nt omnium bona pnedan
tnam ducerea ; nulUiu res tnta, nollius domus clanaa, nulltas vita sepia, nufliua pudicWi
* MiM laM •ufMttatHn «t aiiidMtam yoMl ciM. Ois. r«iv. a. »


U mfiTOKY of

like BO many tyrants, who believed themselves attended by the fasces
and axes, and invested with the authority of the Roman empire
only to exercise in their province an open robbery of the public with
impunity, and to break through aU the barriers of justice and shame
in such a manner, that no man's estate, life, house, nor even honour,
were safe irom their violence.

Syracuse, from all we have seen of it, must have appeared like
a theatre, on which many different and surprising scenes have been
exhibited; or rather like a sea, sometimes calm and untroubled, but
oftener violently agitated by winds and storms, always ready to
overwhelm it entirely. We have seen in no other republic such
sudden, frequent, violent, and various revolutions; sometimes en-
slaved by the most cruel tyrants, at others under the government
of the wisest kings; sometimes abandoned to the capricious will of
a populace, without either curb or restriction; sometimes perfectly
docile and submissive to the authority of law, and the empire of
reason, it passed alternately from the most insupportable slavery to
the most grateful liberty, from a kind of convulsive and frantic
emotions, to a wise, peaceable, and regular conduct. The reader
will easily call to mind, on the one side, Dionysius the father and
son, Agathocles and Hieron3rmus, whose cruelties made them the
object of the public hatred and detestation ; on the other, Grelon,
Dion, Timoleon, tbe two Hieros, ancient and modem, universally
beloved and revered by the people.

To what are such opposite extremes, and vicissitudes so contrary
to be attributed? Undoubtedly, the levity and inconstancy of the
Syracusans, which was their distinguishing characteristic, had a
great share in them: but what, I am convinced, conduced the most
to them, was the very form of their ^vemment, conjpouuded of an
aristocracy and a democracy; that is to say, divided between the
senate or elders, and the people. As there was no counterpoise in
Syracuse to balance those two bodies, when authority inclined either
to the one side or the other, the government presently chan^d
either into a violent and cruel tyranny, or an unbridled liberty^ with*
out order or regulation. The sudden confusion, at such times, of
all orders of the state, made the way to sovereign power easy to the
most ambitious of the citizens: to attract the affection of their conn-
try, and soften the yoke to their fellow-citizens, some exercised that
power with lenity, wisdom, equity, and affability; and others, by
nature, less virtuously inclined, carried it to the last excess of the
«fist absolute and cruel despotism, under pretext of supporting
themselves against the attempts of their citizens, who. Jealous of
their liberty, thought every means for the recovery of it legitimate
and laudable.

There were, besides, other reasons that rendered the government
o^ Syracuse difficult, and thereby made way for the frequent changes
it underwent. That city did not forget the sipial victories it bad
obtained against the formidabk power of Afnca, and liaa



eamea its Tictones and the terror of its anns even to the walk of
Carthage; and that not once only, as afterwards afainst the Athe-
nians, but during several ages. The high idea its fleets and nume-
rous troops sugerested of its maritime power, at the time of the
irruption of the Persians into Greece, occasioned its pretending to
equal Athens in that respect, or at least to divide the empire of the
sea with that state.

Besides which, riches, the natural effect of commerce, had ren-
dered the Syracusans proud, haughty, and imperious, and at the
same time had plunged them into a sloth and luxury that inspired
them with a disgust for all fatigue and application. They geno
rally abandoned themselves blindly to their orators, who had ac
quired an absolute ascendant over them. In order to make them
obey, it was necessary either to flatter or reproach them.

They had naturally a fund of equity, humanity, and good-nature;
and yet, when influenced by the seditious discourses of the orators,
they would proceed to excessive violence and cruelties, of which
they immediately after repented.

When they wer§ left to themselves, their liberty, which at that
time knew no bounds, soon degenerated into caprice, fury, violence,
and, I might say, even frenzy. On the contrary, when they wercj
subjected to the yoke, they became base, timorous, submissive, and
ffro veiling, like slaves. But as this condition was constrained, and
airectly contrary to the character and disposition of the Greek na
tion, bom and nurtured in Uberty, the sense of which was not wholly
extmguished in them, but merely lulled asleep, they waked frou«
time to time from their lethargy, broke their chains, and made usr
of them, if I may be admitted to use the expression, to beat down
and destroy the unjust masters who had imposed them.

With the slightest attention to the whole series of the history of
the Syracusans, it may easily be perceived (as Galba afterwards
said of the Romans,) tliat* they were equally mcapable of bearing
either entire liberty or entire servitude. So that the ability ana
policy of those who governed them, consisted in keeping the people
to a wise medium between those two extremes, by seeming to leave
them an entire freedom in their resolutions, and reserving only to
themselves the care of explaining the utility, and facilitating the
execution, of good measures. And in this the magistrates and kings
we have spoken of were wonderfully successful, under whose go-
vernment the Syracusans always enjoyed peace and tranquillity,
were obedient to their princes, and perfectly submissive to the laws.
And this induces me to conclude, that the revolutions of Syracuse
were less the effect of the people's levity, than the fault of those
that governed them, who had not the art of manaj^ing their passions^
and engaging their affection, which is properly the science of kings,
and of all who command others.

* Iniperatunu es homlnibus, qui nee totam lervitatein pati poMunt, nee totam Ub««
tftlem TmsU. UiwL L L c If.




HISTORY OP pojrrirs*


JUithridates, at twelve yean of age, aaeenda the throne of Pontua He aeizea Cappa
doGia and Bithynia, having first expelled their kings. The Romans re-establish them
He causes all the Romans and Italians in Asia Minor to be put to the sword in oat
day. First war of the Romans with Mithridates, who had made himself mairter of
Asia Minor and Greece, and had taken Athens. Sylla is charged with this war. H«
besieges and retakes Athens. He gains three great battles against the generals of
Mithridates. He grants that prim:e peace in the fourth year of the war. Library
of Athena, in whkh were the works of Aristotle. Sylta causes it to be carried lo

Mithridates, king of Pontus, whose history I am now begin-
ning to relate, and who rendered himself so famous by the war he
supported, during almost thirty years, s^ainst the Romans, was
aurnamed Eupator. He was descended from a house which had
given a long succession of kings to the kingdom of Pontus. The
first, according to some historians, was Artabazus, one of the seven

Erinces that slew the Magi, and set the crown of Persia upon the
ead of Darius Hystaspes, who rewarded him with the kingdom of
Pontus. But, besides that we do not find the name of Artabazus
amongst those seven Persians, many reasons induce us to believe,
that the prince of whom we speak was the son of Darius, the same
who is called Artabarzanes, who was competitor with Xerxes for
the throne of Persia, and was made king of Pontus either by his
father or his brother, to console him for the preference given to
Xerxes. His posterity emoyed that kingdom during seventeen
generations. Mithridates Eupator, of whom we are treating in
this place, was the sixteenth from him.

A. M. 3880. He was but twelve years of age when he began

Aiit. J. c. 124. to reign. His father, before his death, had ap-
pointed hun his successor, and had given him his mother for guar-
dian, who was to govern jointly with him. He began his reign by
putting his mother and brother to death ;* and the sequel cone*

*lf€niioB in ezceipcia Pliodi, e azitt.



sponded but too weJ wkh such a begiimiiig. Nothing is said of
the first years of his rei^,* except that one of the Roman generals,
whom he had corrupted with money, having surrendered, and put
him into possession of Phrygia, it was soon after taken from him by
.the Romans, which gave birth to his enmity against them.

A.M. 3913. Ariarathes,.king of Cappadocia, being dead.

Ant J. c. 91. Mithridates caused the two sons he had left behind
him to be put to death, though their mother Laodice was his own
sister, and placed one of his own sons, at that time very young,
upon'the throne, giving him the name of Ariarathes, and appointing
Gordius his guardian and recent. Nicomedes, king f Bithynia,
who was apprehensive that this increase of power would put Mith-

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