Plutarch.

Plutarch's Lives (Volume 11) online

. (page 16 of 45)
Online LibraryPlutarchPlutarch's Lives (Volume 11) → online text (page 16 of 45)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


jjievov B TOV Bijfiou Kara i ye\Mvre^ 6 JJLEV Tije\-
\ivo$ eOvae awTrjpia Kal Trapea /cei/aae \a^irpav
earlaaiv, 6 8e Out wo? az^acrra? Trapa TOV avro-
tcpdropos iJiera SeiTrvov eKoi^aa'ev a>? Kelvov,
aya)v rrjv dvyarepa ^r)pav ovcrav. Kal 7rpou7riv
o 'Yiy6\\ivo<? avrfj irivre Kal ZIKOGI /jivpidSas
dpyvpiou, Kal rwv 7ra\\aKiBa)V TYJV dye\ap-
Ke\V<T6 rov Trep&epaiov KOCT/JLOV d<p6\o-
efcetvy Trepid"fyai, Trei-reKauSeKa



eivai



XVIII. 'Er Se rovrov Kal ra jj,erpia)s irpar-
$iafto\r)V el^ev, &>? ra TT^O? rou? FaXara?
(Tvvapa/jbevous. eBoKOW yap ov (f>i\av-
Opwrrla rov avroxparopos, aXXa utvov^voi irapa
Oviviov rvy%dveiv dveaews re 8ac7/ua>^ Kal
2 TToXireia?. ol /lev ovv rco\\ol &ia ravra
rrfv i)j/jioi'iai> arc^^Odvovro, rovs 8
rrjv Swpeav /jurj Ko/j,io/j,evous ev dp-^fj /j,ev
Trapijyev &)?, el Kal pr) roaovrov, dXX' oaov
242



GALBA xvii. 3-xvin. 2

object-lesson to show that Vinius could do anything
and fulfil any expectation for those who gave him
enough. For there was no spectacle on which the
Roman people had so set their hearts as that of
Tigellinus dragged away to punishment, and in all
the theatres and circuses they would not cease
demanding him, until they were quelled by an edict
of the emperor in which he declared that Tigellinus
was wasting away with consumption and had not
much longer to live, and advised them not to
exasperate the government or force it to be tyrannical.
Then, in mockery of the dissatisfied people, Tigel-
linus offered sacrifices for his preservation and
prepared a splendid feast ; and Vinius, rising from
beside the emperor, afterwards went to a drinking-
bout in Tigellinus' house, leading his daughter, who
was a widow. Tigellinus pledged her health with
a gift of twenty-five myriads of money, 1 and ordered
the governess of his concubines to take the necklace
from her own neck and put it about hers. The
necklace was said to be worth fifteen myriads.

XVIII. After this, even the reasonable measures
of the emperor fell under censure, as, for instance,
his treatment of the Gauls who had conspired with
Vindex. For they were thought to have obtained their
remission of tribute and their civil rights, not through
the kindness of the emperor, but by purchase from
Vinius. Such were the reasons, then, why most of
the people hated the government ; but the soldiers,
though they had not received their promised largess,
were led on at first by the hope that Galba would
give them, if not the whole of it, at least as much as

1 See the note on Chap. ii. 2.

243



PLUTARCH'S LIVES



Nepoov eScofcev, dTroBwa-ovTOS. eirel Be ue/.i<f)o/j.evow?

a/covcra? dtyrjxe (frayvrjv fjye/J-ovi aeydXy Trpe-

TTOvaav, CLTTCOV elwOevai KaraXeyeiv

OVK dyopd^eiv, irvdoaevois TOVTO Beivov

real dypiov TT/OO? avTov. eSo/cet, <yp OVK
d7ro(TTpeiv /ioyo?, d\\a vofJioOeTeiv fcal



TOU? [tetf avrov avrofcpdropas.
3 'AXXa TO fjii> 1 ev 'Pco/iy rv<j)~\.bv rjv ert



Kai Ti? atSw? dfjia TT/OO? Trapovra rov
teal ie\\ra-iv eveTToiei T



KOU TO fj,Tj&fj.iav dp^v e/JL(f)avr] fj,era^o\^ opa-
(T0ai crvvecTT\\ Kal crvvKpv7nev ayLtco? ye TTW?
rrjv Svcrpeveiav avrwv. ol Se Trporepov VTTO
QvepyivLu* yevo/jLcvoi, rore 8' ovres VTTO ^PXa/CKO)
rrepl Yepfjiaviav, /j,eyd\a)v /jiv d^iovvres a I/TO 1)9
Sid rrjv fj,d%rjv r)V e'/za^ecra^To TT/QO? Oviv&iKa,
fitlSevos Se Tvy^dvovres, dTrapijyopTjroi Tot?
4 ap-fcovcriv rjcrav. avrov Be TOV QXaKKOv VTTO
auvTovov TroBdypas dBvvaTOv ovra rw <ra)[iaTi
/cal Trpay/jLarayv aireipov ev ovBevi \6y<a TO
TrapuTrav eiroiovvTO. Kal TTOTG $e'a?



TO



eirevxp fjLevwv TW avroKparopi Fa\/5a,
oi TroXXol TO vrpwrov, elra rats

dvred)u>vovv " Et



XIX. ToLavra Be erepa Kal TWV VTTO Tiye\\ivM
y/jLarcov v(3pitov~rwv 7roXXa/ct?, eTre/iTreTo ypd/j,-
fj,aTa TO) Td\/3a irapd TCOV eTTLTpoirfov 6 Be
t? a)? /ir; IJLQVOV Bid TO yfjpas, d\\d Kal



1 rb juev Coraes and Bekker have TUV p^v, the correction of
Reiske.

244



GALBA xviii. 2-xix. i

Nero had given. When, however, Galba heard that
they were complaining, he spoke out as became a
great emperor, and declared that it was his custom
to enroll soldiers, not to buy them ; whereupon they
began to cherish a dire and savage hatred towards
him. For they thought that he was not only
defrauding them himself, but laying down the law
and giving instructions for succeeding emperors.

But the agitation at Rome was still smouldering,
and at the same time a certain respect for Galba's
presence blunted and delayed the spirit of revolu-
tion, and the absence of any manifest occasion for a
change repressed and kept under cover, somehow or
other, the resentment of the soldiers. But the
army which had formerly served under Verginius,
and was now serving under Flaccus in Germany,
thinking themselves deserving of great rewards on
account of the battle they had fought against
Vindex, and getting nothing, could not be appeased
by their officers. Of Flaccus himself, who was
physically incapacitated by an acute gout, and in-
experienced in the conduct of affairs, they made 110
account whatever. And once at a spectacle, when
the military tribunes and centurions, after the Roman
custom, invoked health and happiness upon the
emperor Galba, the mass of the soldiery raised a
storm of dissent at first, and then, when the officers
persisted in their invocation, cried out in response,
" If he deserves it. 3 '

XIX. The legions also that were under the
command of Tigellinus frequently behaved with
similar insolence, and letters on the subject were
sent to Galba by his agents. So the emperor, fear-
ing that it was not only his old age but also his

245



PLUTARCH'S LIVES



Bid T)]V aTraiBiav Kara<f)povov/jii>os, e{3ov\eve~o
TralBa BeaOai T&V emfyav&v riva veavicfKov Kal

2 BidBo^ov aTToBei^ai T/}<? dpy^^. rjv Be Mdptcos
"Q0wv, avrjp yevei, /^ev OVK defrauds, rpv&fj Be Kal
$>t~\r)BovLai$ [email protected] e/c Trai&wv ev 0X^7049 'Pco/jLaicov
Bie(j)0ap/j,evo$. &>? Be rov *A\et;ai>Bpoi> f 'Q/JLr)pos

TTOCTIV ^VKO^JLOLO^ /iojBev e^ovra Trpos
a\\o aejJivvvwv CITTO T/}? yvvaiKos, ovo/jid{ei
OUTW? lyeycwa)? TT6/3i/Soj;ro? ev f Po>/xr;
Bid TOV IToTrTrata? rydfiov, rj<; ijpa /JLCV 6 Nepwr
Kpio-TTiixo crvvov(njs t eri 8' aiBov{J,evos rrjv eavrov
Awaited KOI Trfv /jLijrepa ^oySou/xe?'o? ixpfjfce TOV

3 "Q&cova treLpwvTa rr-/v \\oirrraiav. d>i\(o Be TM
"QOwvi teal (TVi-iftiwTjj Bid Tijv dcrwriav %pf)TO,

Kal (TKCt)7rTO{JLVOS VTT OLVTOV TToXXaATi? t? /JilKpO-

\oyiav Kal dve\evdep'iav escape. Xeyerat Be



7TOT6 [AVpCO TO)T TT ofT 0) V LCra^VOV TOV

"



Kal TOV "QOcova KaTa/3peavTo<;, e
Trd\u> Ty vcrrepaia Be^ofievo^ avTov a^a TroXXa-
^o6ev apyvpovs Kal ^pvcrovs Trpo/3a\elv afyvu)
(jaiX-yra?, warrep vBcop TO fjivpov eK^eovTas Kal

4 KaraK\vovTa$. aXXa TTTJV ye TIoTnraiav rrpo/AOi-

rcG Nepcovt,, Kal Bia<[email protected] rat? ets"
\7rLaii', erreicrev aTroaTrjvai TOV dvBpos.

Be Trap' avTov co? ya/j.eT))<s OVK
/j.Te)((jL)V, aXX' ?/cr^aXXt neTaBiBovs, ovBe
d^OofjLei>r)<;, w? (jjacrt, Ttj ^Xorurrta TT}?

5 Kal yap d7TOK\ierai TOV Nepcova \eyeTai ^
TtapovTOs TOV 'Or'wi/o?, etre rr}? rfBovijs d<paipovcra
TO TT\ij<T/j.tov, el're, w? tyacriv evioi,



246



GALBA xix. 1-5

childlessness that brought him into contempt,
planned to adopt some young man of illustrious
family and appoint him his successor. Marcus Otho,
now, was a man of good lineage, but from his very
childhood corrupted by luxury and the pursuit of
pleasure as few Romans were. And as Homer often
calls Paris " the husband of fair-haired Helen/'
giving him a dignity borrowed from his wife, since
lie had no other title to fame, so Otho was celebrated
at Rome for his marriage with Poppaea. With
Poppaea Nero was enamoured while she was the
wife of Crispinus, but since he respected his own
wife still and feared his mother, he put Otho up
to soliciting her favours for him. For because of
Otho's lavish prodigality Nero made an intimate
friend of him, and was well pleased to be rallied by
him often for parsimony and meanness. Thus, we
are told that Nero once anointed himself with a
costly ointment and sprinkled a little of it upon
Otho ; whereupon Otho, entertaining the emperor
in his turn on the following day, suddenly brought
into play gold and silver pipes on all sides of the
room, out of which the ointment gushed freely, like
so much water. But as for Poppaea, Otho corrupted
her with hopes of Nero's favour and seduced her
first himself, and persuaded her to leave her husband.
However, after she had come to live with him as his
wife, he was not content to have only a share in her
favours, and was loth to give Nero a share, while
Poppaea herself, as we are told, was not displeased
at the rivalry between them. For it is said that she
would shut out Nero although Otho was not at
home ; whether it was that she sought to keep his
pleasure in her from cloying, or whether, as some

247



PLUTARCH'S LIVES



TOV KatVa/>o? yd/JLOV, epacrrfj Be /JLIJ
yprjcrOcu Bid TO <^)L\aKO\acrTOV. eKtvBvvevcrev
ovv o "Odwv diroQavelv Kai 7rapd\oyov TJV OTI
TTJV yvvaiKa /cat dBe\<prjv dTro/creivas Bid TOV



yjj,ov eecraTO TOV
XX. ^eveicav Se el V vvovv Kcuceivov TOV



Trei&avTOS real TrapaivecravTos



o~TpaTr}yo<; eVl TOV 'Qrceavov. real
7rapO"%ev eavTov OVK a%apiv ouSe 7ra%0rj rot?
v-jrrjKoois, 6t8&)9 (frvyrjs VTroKoptcr^ua teal
2 \VfjLfJia Trjv dp%r)V avTW



, fcal <pepwv ocrov el^ev ev eKTrwf^acn /cat
apyvpov Kai %pvcrbv eBa)K KaTaKo^ai
vo/jLicrfJ-a, Kai TWV olfCCTtov cBcopijcraTO 106/
TOU? eWicr/jievovs irepl SiaiTav rfye^ovi eya/ieXa)?
vTrovpyeiv. Kai TO. d\\a TTHTTOS rjv CLVT&, Kai
SiSovs Trelcav ovBevbs T/TTOV eoo/cet 7rpay/jidTO)v

e'yU/7Tt/309 eivdi' KOL (3a$ioVTl TTjV 6&OV aTTCKTCLV

efi rj/jiepas TroXXa? avvo^ovfjievo^ SiereKeo'ev.

3 cv Se Trj crvvo^ia Kai TTJ trvvrjOela TOV QVLVIOV

e^eOepd-nevaev 6/j.i\ia Kai Soopot?, /iaXtcrra 8e

TO)V TTpWTeiwV V(j)LfJLVO<; aVTW TO ye fJLT KtVOl>

SvvacrOai ^t' e/ceiiov et^e /3e/3at'&>9. TW Be dv-
7ri(f)&6vti) Trepirji', TrpoLKa crv/jiTrpdrTcov irdvTa rot?
8eofj,evoL<;, Kai Trape^wv eavToi' evTrpocnjyopov KOL
<f)L\dv0pa)Trov airacn. TrXetcrra Be rot?

arvve\d[jL/3ave KOI Trporjye TTO\\OV<>



ta Coraes and Bekker, after Du Soul : OUT<^S.



1 Cf. Tacitus, Annals, xiii. 45 f.
248






GALBA xix. 5~xx. 3

say, she recoiled from a marriage with the emperor,
but was not averse to having him as a lover, out of
mere wantonness. Otho, accordingly, came into
peril of his life ; and it was strange that although
his own wife and sister were put to death by Nero
on account of his marriage with Poppaea, Otho
himself was spared. 1

XX. But Otho had the good will of Seneca, by
whose advice and persuasion Nero sent him out as
governor of Lusitania to the shores of the western
ocean. Here he made himself acceptable and
pleasing to his subjects, although he knew that his
office had been given him to disguise and mitigate
his banishment. When Galba revolted, Otho was
the first of the provincial governors to go over to
him, and bringing all the gold and silver that he had
in the shape of drinking-cups and tables, he gave it
to him for conversion into coin, presenting him also
with those of his servants who were qualified to give
suitable service for the table of an emperor. In
other ways he was trusted by Galba, and when put to
the test was thought to be inferior to none as a
man of affairs ; and during the entire journey of the
emperor he would travel in the same carriage with
him for many days together. Moreover, amid the
intimacies of the common journey he paid court to
Y 7 inius, both in person and by means of gifts, and,
above all else, by yielding to him the first place, he
got his aid in holding securely the place of influence
next to him. But in avoiding envy he was superior
to Vinius, for he gave his petitioners every aid with-
out any reward, and showed himself easy of access
and kindly to all men. But it w r as the soldiers whom
he was most ready to help, and he advanced many of

249

VOL. XI. I



PLUTARCH'S LIVES

rjyeuovias, ra aev alrov/jievo^ arro TOV avTOKpa-
4 TO/OO?, ra Be TOV Quiviov KOI TOU? aTreXevdepovs
TrapaKa\a)v "ItfeAoi> /cal 'AcrLariKov OVTOI yap
r)aav ev Bwdpei p,d\Lcna TWV Trepl TTJV av\r)v.
ocrd/cis Be rov Td\/3av elarla, TIJV 7rapa(j)V\dr-
Tovcrav del cnrelpav eBexa^e yjpvaovv e/cacrro)
, ol? Ti^av avrov e&ofcei KaraTroXiTevo-
KOI Srj/jLaycoywv TO crrpaTiwriKov.
XXI. 'AX\' ovv {3ov\evo[ievov ye TOV FaX/3a

l Sia$6'%ov TOP "QOwva 7rapi<rrjyev o
ov$e TOVTO TrpOiKa Trpdcrcrwv, aXV eirl
BvyaTpos, o/j,o\oyia<; yevo/Jievrjc; ya/nelv avrrjv TOV
"OOcova TralSa TOV Vd\(3a Kal &id$o%ov a
)(6evTa r/}9 riyefjiovlas. o Be FaXySa? del /JLCV

7T/JO TOV IBiOV TO KOIVOV TiOefJLeVO

vTU) OivOat, TOV r)SicrTOv, d\\d '
2 TOV ooeXiLtooraTOf. 8o/cet Be u3' av eirl



i TOV

VO/JLOV, ciKoXaaTOv tSa>? Kal TroXureXr; Kal irevTa-
KUT%i\La>v uupidScov 6(f)\^uao'L
'69ev ciKovaas TOV QVIVLOV ateoTrfj Kal

TTJV BidOeaiv. aTroSet^a? S' avTov
Kal avvdp^ovTa TOV Qviviov eiriSoo$ r)v
eroi;? dp^fj TOV BidBo^ov dvayopeixreiv Kal TO
CTTpaTiutTLKOv r}Se'ft)? ^X e r 1 ' V O^a>fa Trap' OVTLVOVV
a\\ov [email protected])vai.

XXII. KaraXa/i,/3a^ei S' avTov CTI /jie\\ovTa



1 See the note on Chap. ii. 2.
250



GALBA xx. 3-xxn. i

them to places of command, sometimes asking the
appointment from the emperor, and sometimes
getting the support of Vinius, and of the freedmen
Icelus and Asiaticus ; for these were the most
influential men at court. And as often as he
entertained Galba, he would compliment the cohort
on duty for the day by giving each man a gold piece,
thus showing honour to the emperor, as it was
thought, while really scheming for the support and
favour of the soldiery.

XXI. So, then, while Galba was deliberating upon
a successor, Vinius suggested Otho. And yet not
even this was done for nothing, but as a return for
the marriage of his daughter. For it had been
agreed that Otho should marry her when he had
been adopted by Galba and declared his successor.
But Galba always showed clearly that he placed the
public good before his private interests, and in the
present case that he aimed to adopt, not the man
who was most agreeable to himself, but the one who
would be most serviceable to the Romans. And it
does not seem that he would have chosen Otho
merely as the heir of his own private fortune/ since
he knew that he was unrestrained and extravagant
and immersed in debts amounting to five millions. 1
Wherefore, after listening to Vinius calmly and
without a word, he postponed his decision. But he
appointed himself and Vinius consuls for the follow-
ing year, and it was expected that on their accession
to office he would declare his successor. And the
soldiery would have been glad that Otho, rather
than anyone else, should be so declared.

XXII. But while the emperor was hesitating
and deliberating, he was overtaken by the dis-

251



PLUTARCH'S LIVES

KCU {3ov\ev6/jLvov eKpayevTd rd Tep/jLavitcd. tcoivfj
jap diravres ol arpareuo/jievoi, rbv Yd\ftav epicrovv
OVK aTToBiBovra rrjv Bwpedv, IBias Be eKelvoL rrpo-
<cret9 eTroiovvro Gpepyiviov re'
fjievov dri/jLO)^ teal TaXaTWV TOU?

2 auTOfc? Swpewv Tvyxdvovras, oaoi 5e fir) Trpocr-

oXa^o/jLevovs, w fj.ov(D rbv Td\/3av
KCU TL^LCLV redvrjKora KCU yepaipeiv
<yi(TiAols, a>5 VTT' e/ceivov 'Pco/jLaiwv

3 aTroBebeiy/jLevov avro/cpdropa. TOLOVTCDV dvatyav-

ev



t vov^via TOV TrpooTov fjirivos, r)v ica-
\di>Ba<t 'lavovapias KaXovar rov Be ^\uKfcov
avrovs eVl TOV optcov ov e^o? earlv
VTrep rov avro/epdropos, ra9 fj,ev elicovas
rov Td\j3a 7rpoae\Qbvres dverpe^rav KOI tcar-
ecnraa'av, avrol Be b^ocravre^ virep o-vyK\ijrov KCU

4 Brjpov 'Pa)/J.ai(ov Bie\vOrjcrav. elra rot? fl
Kols rrapicrraro BeBoi/cevai rrjv dvapy^iav
arrba-raaiv. \ejei Be Ti? ev aurot?' " Tt

/Lte^ a) ffvarrpariwrai, fJirjr d\\ov rjyejjiova TTOIOV-
fievot, [Aijre rov vvv ovra <f>v\drrovrS, wuirep ov
Td\{3av, aXX,' 6'A.a)? ap^ovra KCU rb ap%e<rdai

5 $>evyovre<$ ; Q>\UKKOV fj,ev ovv 'QpBewviov ovBev
a\\o >; crKiav ovra PdX/Sa KOI LBa)\ov eareov,
r;/U6/)a? Be yum? 0802^ d^ear^Kev rj/jL&v OuiVeXXfo?,
o TT}? erepas Yep/jiavias riyovfievos, rrarpbs re
n/jLTjrov real rpls virdrov yevofjievov /tal K\avBiw 10J
Kaicrapi rpbrrov nva a-vvdp^avros, avrbs re rijv

1 See Chap. iv. 3.
252



GALBA xxn. 1-5

orders which broke out among the troops in
Germany. For the soldiers in all parts of the
empire had a common hatred of Galba because
he had not given them their usual largess, but
those in Germany made special excuses for them-
selves out of the fact that Verginius Rufus had been
cast off in dishonour; that the Gauls who had fought
against them were getting rewards, while all those
who had not joined Vindex were being punished ;
and that to Vindex alone Galba showed gratitude
by honouring him when he was dead and giving him
the distinction of public obsequies, on the ground that
\ index had proclaimed him emperor of the Romans. 1
Such arguments as these were already circulating
openly in the camp, when the first day of the first
month came, which the Romans call the Calends of
January. On this day Flaccus assembled the soldiers
that they might take the customary oath of allegiance
to the emperor ; but they overturned and pulled
down all the statues of Galba which they could find,
and after swearing allegiance to the senate and
people of Rome, went to their quarters. Then their
officers began to fear that their lawless spirit might
issue in revolt, and one of them made this speech :
" What is wrong with us, mv fellow soldiers ? We

o *

are neither Supporting the present emperor nor
setting up another. It is as though we were
averse, not to Galba, but to all rule and obedience.
Flaccus Hordeonius, indeed, who is nothing but a
shadow and image of Galba, we must ignore, but
there is Vitellius, who is only a day's march distant
from us, and commands the forces in the other
Germany. His father was censor, thrice consul, and
in a manner the colleague of Claudius Caesar, and

2 53



PLUTARCH'S LIVES



\oiBopov fAevrjv vii eviwv Treviav

e^wv xpijcTTorrjTOS KOI /jLeya\o<ppo(rvvrj^. <f>epe,

TOVTOV e\,OfJLVOt Bei^CO/iJLeV avOpWTTOLS TTCifflV O>9

'Iftr/pwv KOI Avairavwv wfikiVQV*} efrfiev auro-
KpciTOpa aipelcrflai"

6 Taura TMV jJiev rj$r) TrpoaiefAercov, TWV 8' ov

, el? v

TO)

1 avrw. rov Se \6yov &icurerrovTO<$ e/? TO,

Trpwro? <&d/3tos OvdXrjs, rj
a^/iaTO?, rfj vcrrepaia /^era irrrrewv
avrofcpdropa rov OviT\\iov

7 6 Se ra? p,i> efiTrpocrOev ?7/xe/oa?



TO



, rore ^e <f>a(ni> olvov 8/a7rXew^ KOI
orra fjLcn-)fji(Bpivris irpoeXOeiv KOI vrraKovcrai
YepfjidviKov ovofjia 0fjLvci)v avrw, TO Be Kai<rapo<;
8 ov Trpoa-Se^d/jLevov. evdvs Be teal TO perd <&\dK/cov



crTprevuarov^ /eaou? etce'ivovs



T(p avTOKpoLTOpi TTOirfaeiv TO 7rpO(TTacrcr/J.evov

XXIII. OVTCI) fjiev avriyopevOri
avTOKpcnwp ev Tep/jLavia. TrvfJojuevos Be TOV
vewrepicrfjiov o Yd\/3a$ ovKen rr^v
dv/3d\\ero. yivwa/caiv Be rwv (foiXwv eviovs jjie
AoXo/3e\Xa, Toi/9 Be 7r\eicrrov^ vrrep "



/j.rjBV Trpoenrwv fJierGTrefi-^ra-ro Heicrayva,
Kpaaaov real *2.Kpi(3a)via<$ e/vyovov, OU9 Ne'pwv
2 dvrjpijKei, veaviav ev TTJ rrpos Traaav dper^v
ev<j)via TO KQa^iiov Kal avcrTrjpov jJL<>avecrTaTa



254



GALBA xxii. 5-xxm. 2

Vitellius himself, in the poverty with which some
reproach him, affords a splendid proof of probity and
magnanimity. Come, let us choose him, and so show
the world that we know how to select an emperor
better than Iberians and Lusitanians."

While some of the soldiers were already for adopt-
ing this proposal and others for rejecting it, one
standard-bearer stole away and brought tidings of
the matter by night to Vitellius, as he was entertain-
ing many guests. The news spread swiftly to the
troops, and first Fabius Valens, commander of a
legion, rode up next day with a large body of horse-
men and saluted Vitellius as emperor. Hitherto
Vitellius had seemed to decline and avoid the
office, fearing the magnitude of it ; but on this day,
as they say, being fortified with wine and a midday
meal, he came out to the soldiers and accepted the
title of Germanicus which they conferred upon him,
though he rejected that of Caesar. And straightway
the army with Flaccus also, casting aside those fine
and democratic oaths of theirs to support the senate,
took oath that they would obey the orders of
Vitellius the emperor.

XXIII. Thus was Vitellius proclaimed emperor in
Germany ; and when Galba learned of the revolution
there he no longer deferred his act of adoption.
Knowing that some of his friends favoured the selec-
tion of Dolabella, and most of them that of Otho,
neither of whom was approved by himself, he
suddenly, and without any previous notice of his
intention, sent for Piso (whose parents, Crassus and
Scribonia, had been put to death by Nero), a young
man in whose predisposition to every virtue the traits
of gravity and decorum were most conspicuous ; then

255



PLUTARCH'S LIVES

e%ovra' KOI Karefiaivev ew TO crrparorreBov ef
vov aTroBei^wv Kaiaapa teal Sid$o%ov. KCUTOI



Qovv, dpa/jievov Se ra (Jiev \eyeiv ev rS> crrparo-
7re8ft>, ra Se avaryLvwcriceiv, rocravrdfcis eftpovrrjae
KOL KarijaTpa-^re, KCU TocroOro? o/x/9/3o? KOI 6(j)os
e^e^vOrj et? TO crrparoTreSov teal rrjv 7ro\iv, ft)?
KardBv\ov elvai prj Trpocne^evov /Lt7/8e eTraivovv TO
Sai/Aoviov yivo/jLevrjv OVK JTT dyaOw rrjv clcrTroir)-
3 <TIV. ty Se KOL ra ra>v arpanwrMV vrrovka KOI
aKvOpwrra /z?;Se TOTG Scopeas avrols Bodeicrr]^.

Tof) Be HeicrcDvos ol rrapovres edavfiacrav ry
re cfxavy re/cfjiaipofievoi teal rq> Trpoauura) TO rrj\i-
/cavrrjv X^P LV dve/JL7T\iJKra)s, ov



warrep av rov

rro\\a crrjfjLela rfj /j,op(f)f) m/cpa)? KOA, avv opyfj
eXTT/So? rrjv drrorev^iv fyepovros, fj<; TT^OJTO?
KOL rov rv)(elv eyjvrdray yevofievos TO
7roitro crrjfjielov e^^ou? dfia teal Ka/co-
4 voias rov Td\/3a Trpo? avrov. oOev ou&e d<po/3os
rrepi rov fjie\\ovros, d\\a real rov TLeifrcova
teal rov Td\/3av 7rpo/3a\\6fjivo<> real rw
OVIVLW xd\Traivwv drryei rroXX.MV rraOwv TrX?;/??;?.
ovBe yap TO e\rri^ov K\nrelv ov&e drrayopevcrai
Travrarraaiv eiwv OL Trepl avrov ovres del fxavreis
teal XaXSatoi, et? ra fi,d\icrra 8e IlToXe/iaio?
la"xvpi6fj,vos TO) rrpoeirrelv TroXXa/ct? ot>? OVK
arroKrevel Nepcw avrov, d\\d reOvij^erai rrporepos,
auTo? Se Trepiearat, Kal ap^et'PwfjLaiwv (e/celvo yap
256



GALBA xxni. 2-4

he went down to the camp to declare him Caesar
and heir to the throne. And vet as soon as he set

%/

out, great signs from heaven accompanied him on his
way, and after he had begun to pronounce and read
his address to the soldiers, there were many peals
of thunder and flashes of lightning, and much dark-
ness and rain pervaded both the camp and the city,
so that it was plain that the act of adoption was
inauspicious and was not favoured or approved by the
heavenly powers. The soldiers also were secretly
disloyal and sullen, since not even then was their
largess given to them.

As for Piso, those who were present at the scene
and observed his voice and countenance were amazed
to see him receive so great a favour without great
emotion, though not without appreciation ; whereas
in the outward aspect of Otho there were many
clear signs of the bitterness and anger with which
he took the disappointment of his hopes. He had
been the first to be thought worthy of the prize, and
had come very near attaining it, and his not attain-
ing it was regarded by him as a sign of ill-will and
hatred on Galba's part towards him. Wherefore he
was not without apprehension for the future, and
fearing Piso, blaming Galba, and angry with Vinius,
he went away full of various passions. For the
soothsayers and Chaldaeans who were always about
him would not suffer him to abandon his hopes or
give up altogether, particularly Ptolemaeus, who
dwelt much upon his frequent prediction that Nero
would not kill Otho, but would die first himself, and
that Otho would survive him and be emperor of the
Romans (for now that he could point to the first
part of the prediction as true, he thought that Otho

257



PLUTARCH'S LIVES



ravra

fJKtcrra 6' ol avva^Qo^voi /cpv<f>a /cai o~vv-
revovres ft>? d%dpio~ra rreTrovdori. 7r\elo~roi
Be rwv Trepl Tiye\\ivov teal NV/JL^L^LOV ev Ti/mfj
yeyovorayv aTreppijji/JiCVOi rore KCLI raireiva Trpdr-



Online LibraryPlutarchPlutarch's Lives (Volume 11) → online text (page 16 of 45)