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father Kleandrides was banished from Sparta for taking bribes, while
he himself afterwards stole thirty of the hundred talents which
Lysander sent home to Sparta, and hid them under the roof of his
house, but was informed against, and exiled in disgrace. This will be
found described at greater length in the Life of Lysander.

In his account of the death of Nikias and Demosthenes, Timæus does not
exactly follow the narrative of Thucydides and Philistus, as he
informs us that while the assembly was still sitting, Hermokrates sent
to their prison to inform them that they were condemned to death, and
to afford them the means of dying by their own hands, while the other
historians state that the Syracusans put them to death.[4] Be this as
it may, their dead bodies were exposed before the gates of Syracuse as
a spectacle for the citizens. I have heard also that at the present
day a shield is shown in one of the temples at Syracuse, which is said
to be that of Nikias, and which is beautifully adorned with woven
coverings of purple and gold.

XXIX. Of the Athenians, the most part perished in the stone quarries
of disease and insufficient food, for they received only a pint of
barley-meal and half-a-pint of water each day. Not a few, however,
were sold into slavery, being stolen for that purpose by Syracusans,
or having escaped disguised as slaves. The rest were at length branded
upon their foreheads with the figure of a horse, and sold into
slavery. Yet even in this extremity their well-bred and dignified
behaviour came to their aid; for they soon either obtained their
freedom, or gained the confidence and respect of their masters. Some
gained their freedom by their knowledge of Euripides. It appears that
the dramas of Euripides were especially popular in Sicily, but that
only a few fragments of his works had hitherto reached the Greek
cities in that island. We are told that many of these captives on
their return to Athens affectionately embraced Euripides, and told
him how some of them had been sold into slavery, but had been set free
after they had taught their masters as much of his poetry as they
could remember, while others, when wandering about the country as
fugitives after the battle, had obtained food and drink by reciting
passages from his plays. We need not then wonder at the tale of the
people of Kaunus, who, when a ship pursued by pirates was making for
their harbour at first refused to admit it, but afterwards enquired
whether any on board knew the plays of Euripides; and on hearing that
they did, allowed them to enter the harbour and save themselves.

XXX. At Athens the news of the catastrophe was at first disbelieved,
because of the unsatisfactory way in which it reached the city. A
stranger, it is said, disembarked at Peiræus, went into a barber's
shop, and began to converse about what had happened as upon a theme
which must be uppermost in every man's mind. The astonished barber,
hearing for the first time such fearful tidings, ran up to Athens to
communicate it to the archons, and to the public in the market-place.
All were shocked and astonished at hearing this, and the archons
immediately convoked the public assembly, and brought the barber
before it. When he was asked to explain from whom he had heard this
intelligence, as he could give no satisfactory account, he was
regarded as a disturber of the public tranquillity by fabricating idle
tales, and was even put to the torture. Soon, however, men arrived who
confirmed his tale, and described all the details of the catastrophe
as far as they had witnessed them. Then at last the countrymen of
Nikias believed, after his death, what he had so often foretold to
them during his life.


[Footnote 1: In North Africa, the modern oasis of Siwah.]

[Footnote 2: Plemmyrium on one side, and the city of Syracuse on the
other, command the entrance of the gulf known as the Great Harbour,
inside of which lay the Athenian fleet and camp.]

[Footnote 3: Grote.]

[Footnote 4: Grote, Part II. ch. lx, points out that there is no real
contradiction between the statement cited from Timæus, and the
accounts gives of the transaction by Thucydides and Philistus.]


I. Marcus Crassus[5] was the son of a father who had been censor, and
enjoyed a triumph; but he was brought up with his two brothers in a
small house. His brothers were married in the lifetime of their
parents, and all had a common table, which seems to have been the
chief reason that Crassus was a temperate and moderate man in his way
of living. Upon the death of one of his brothers, Crassus married the
widow,[6] and she became the mother of his children; for in these
matters also he lived as regular a life as any Roman. However, as he
grew older, he was charged with criminal intercourse with Licinia,[7]
one of the Vestal Virgins, who was brought to trial; the prosecutor
was one Plotinus. Licinia had a pleasant estate in the suburbs, which
Crassus wished to get at a small price, and with this view he was
continually about the woman and paying his court to her, which brought
on him the suspicion of a criminal intercourse; but he was acquitted
by the judices, being indebted in some degree to his love of money for
his acquittal from the charge of debauching the vestal. But he never
remitted his attentions to Licinia till he got possession of the

II. Now, the Romans say that the many good qualities of Crassus were
obscured by one vice, avarice; but the fact appears to be that one
vice, which was more predominant in his character than all the rest
hid his other vices. They allege, as the chief proof of his avarice,
the mode in which he got his money and the amount of his property.
Though he did not at first possess above three hundred talents, and
during his first consulship he dedicated the tenth part of his
property to Hercules,[8] and feasted the people, and gave every Roman
out of his own means enough to maintain him for three months; yet,
before the Parthian expedition, upon making an estimate of his
property, he found it amount to seven thousand one hundred talents.
The greatest part of this, if one must tell the truth, though it be a
scandalous story, he got together out of the fire and the war, making
the public misfortunes the source of his wealth; for, when Sulla took
the city, and sold the property of those whom he put to death,
considering it and calling it spoil, and wishing to attach the infamy
of the deed to as many of the most powerful men as he could, Crassus
was never tired of receiving or buying. Besides this, observing the
accidents that were indigenous and familiar at Rome, conflagrations,
and tumbling down of houses owing to their weight and crowded state,
he bought slaves, who were architects and builders. Having got these
slaves to the number of more than five hundred, it was his practice to
buy up houses on fire, and the houses which were adjoining to those on
fire; for the owners, owing to fear and uncertainty, would sell them
at a low price; and thus the greatest part of Rome fell into the hands
of Crassus: but, though he had so many artizans, he built no house
except his own; for he used to say that those who were fond of
building were ruined by themselves, without the aid of any opponent.
Though he had many silver mines, and much valuable land, and many
labourers on it, still one would suppose that all this was of little
value, compared with the value of his slaves: so many excellent slaves
he possessed, - readers, clerks, assayers of silver,[9] house-managers,
and table-servants; and he himself superintended their education, and
paid attention to it and taught them, and, in short, he considered
that a master was mainly concerned in looking after his slaves, who
were the living implements of domestic economy. And here Crassus was
right, if, as he used to say, it was his opinion that he ought to
effect everything by the instrumentality of slaves, and that he
himself should direct the slaves; for, we observe, that what is
economical with respect to things lifeless is political with respect
to men. But he was not right in thinking and saying that nobody was
rich who could not maintain an army out of his substance; for war
feeds not by a fixed allowance, according to Archidamus;[10] and,
consequently, the wealth that is required for war is unlimited; and
this opinion of Crassus was very different from the opinion of Marius;
for when Marius, after giving to each man fourteen jugera of land,
found that they wanted more, he said, "May there never be a Roman who
thinks that too little which is enough to maintain him."

III. Besides this, Crassus was hospitable to strangers, for his house
was open to all, and he used to lend money to his friends without
interest; but he would demand it back immediately on the expiration of
the time of the borrower, which made the gratuitous loan more
burdensome than heavy interest. In his entertainments the invitation
was usually to persons of the plebeian class, and general: and the
frugality of the banquet, which was accompanied with neatness and a
friendly welcome, made it more agreeable than a sumptuous feast. In
his literary pursuits he mainly studied oratory,[11] and that kind
which was of practical use; and, having attained an ability in
speaking equal to the first among the Romans, he surpassed in care and
labour those who had the greatest talents; for they say, there was no
case, however mean and contemptible, which he approached without
preparation; and often, when Pompeius, and Cæsar, and Cicero, were
unwilling to get up to speak, he would perform all the duties of an
advocate: and for this reason he became more popular, being considered
a careful man, and always ready to give his help. He pleased people,
also, by his friendly and affable manner in taking them by the hand,
and addressing them; for Crassus never met a Roman, however low and
humble his condition might be, without returning his salute,[12] and
addressing him by his name. He is also said to have been well versed
in history, and to have paid some attention to philosophy by studying
the writings of Aristoteles, in which he had for his teacher
Alexander, a man who gave a proof of his moderation and easy temper in
his intercourse with Crassus; for it was not easy to say whether he
was poorer when he became acquainted with Crassus, or after the
acquaintance was made. He was, indeed, the only friend of Crassus, who
always accompanied him when he travelled abroad; and he used to wear a
cloak,[13] lent him for the purpose, which on his return he was asked
to give back. Oh, the submission[14] of the man! for the poor fellow
did not consider poverty among the things that are indifferent. But
this belongs to a later period.

IV. When Marius and Cinna had got the upper hand, and it was soon
apparent that they would reinstate themselves in Rome, not for the
benefit of their country, but plainly for the destruction and ruin of
the nobles, those who were caught in the city were put to death: among
whom were the father and brother of Crassus. Crassus, being very
young, escaped immediate danger; but, seeing that he was hemmed in on
all sides, and hunted by the tyrants, he took with him three friends
and ten slaves; and, using wonderful expedition, made his escape to
Iberia, having been there before, when his father was Prætor,[15] and
having made himself friends. Finding all in great alarm and trembling
at the cruelty of Marius, as if he were close at hand, he did not
venture to make himself known, but sought refuge in a tract bordering
on the sea, belonging to Vibius Pacianus,[16] where he hid himself in
a large cave. He sent a slave to Vibius to sound his disposition; for
the provisions that Crassus brought with him were now exhausted. On
hearing the news, Vibius was pleased that Crassus had escaped; and
inquiring about the number of persons with him, and where the place
was, he did not go himself to see them, but he took his villicus near
the spot, and ordered him to have food daily prepared, and to carry it
and place it near the rock, and to go away without speaking a word,
and not to be curious about the matter, or make any inquiries; and he
gave him notice, that if he did meddle at all he should be put to
death, but if he faithfully helped in the matter he should have his
freedom. The cave is not far from the sea, and the precipices which
shut it in leave a small and hardly perceptible path[17] which leads
into the cave; but when you have entered, it opens to a wonderful
height, and spreads out wide, with recesses which open into one
another, and are of a large circuit. It is also neither without water
nor light: for a spring of the purest water oozes out at the base of
the precipice; and there are natural clefts about that part where the
rock closes, by which the external light is admitted, and in the
daytime the spot is fully illuminated. The air within is free from all
moisture caused by dropping, and is quite pure, owing to the
compactness of the rock, which diverts all the wet and droppings to
the spring.

V. While Crassus stayed in the cave, the slave came daily to bring
provisions; but he did not see the persons who were concealed, or know
who they were; though he was seen by them, inasmuch as they knew, and
watched the times of his coming. Now, the provision that was made for
their meals was ample enough even for luxury, and not merely
sufficient for their necessities. But Vibius determined to show
Crassus every kind of friendly attention; and it occurred to him to
consider the youth of Crassus, that he was a very young man, and that
provision should be made in some degree also for the pleasures
suitable to his age, and that merely to supply his wants would argue
that he was serving Crassus as little as he could, rather than with
hearty zeal; accordingly, he took with him two handsome female slaves,
and went down to the sea-coast. When he came to the place, he pointed
to the road that led up to it, and told them to go in boldly. Crassus,
seeing them approach, was afraid that the spot was known, and had been
discovered; and, accordingly, he asked them what they wanted, and who
they were. The women replied, as they had been instructed, that they
were looking for their master, who was concealed there; on which
Crassus perceived the joke which Vibius was playing off upon him, and
his kind attentions, and received the women; and they stayed with him
for the rest of the time, telling and reporting to Vibius what he
requested them. Fenestella[18] says, that he saw one of these slaves
when she was an old woman, and that he had often heard her mention
this, and tell the story with pleasure.

VI. In this way Crassus spent eight months in concealment; but as
soon as he heard of Cinna's end, he showed himself, and out of the
numbers that flocked to him he selected two thousand five hundred,
with whom he went round to the cities; and one city, Malaca,[19] he
plundered, according to the testimony of many authors, though they say
that he denied the fact, and contradicted those who affirmed it. After
this he got together some vessels, and crossed over to Libya, to
Metellus Pius,[20] a man of reputation who had collected a force by no
means contemptible. But he stayed no long time there; for he
quarrelled with Metellus, and then set out to join Sulla, by whom he
was treated with particular respect. When Sulla had passed over the
sea to Italy, he wished all the young men who were with him to aid him
actively, and he appointed them to different duties. Crassus, on being
sent into the country of the Marsi to raise troops, asked for a guard,
because the road lay through a tract which was occupied by the enemy;
Sulla replied to him in passion and with vehemence, "I give thee as
guards thy father, thy brother, thy friends, thy kinsmen, who were cut
off illegally and wrongfully, and whose murderers I am now pursuing."
Stung by these words, and pricked on to the undertaking, Crassus
immediately set out, and, vigorously making his way through the enemy,
he got together a strong force, and showed himself active in the
battles of Sulla. The events of that war, it is said, first excited
him to rivalry and competition with Pompeius for distinction. Pompeius
was younger than Crassus, and his father had a bad repute at Rome, and
had been bitterly hated by the citizens; but still Pompeius shone
conspicuous in the events of that period and proved himself to be a
great man, so that Sulla showed him marks of respect which he did not
very often show to others of more advanced years and of his own rank,
by rising from his seat when Pompeius approached, and uncovering his
head, and addressing him by the title of Imperator. All this set
Crassus in a flame, and goaded him, inasmuch as he was thus slighted
in comparison with Pompeius; and with good reason; Crassus was
deficient in experience, and the credit that he got by his military
exploits was lost by his innate vices, - love of gain and meanness;
for, upon taking Tudertia,[21] a city of the Umbri, it was suspected
that he appropriated to himself most of the spoil, and this was made a
matter of charge against him to Sulla. However, in the battle near
Rome,[22] which was the greatest in all the war, and the last, Sulla
was defeated, the soldiers under his command being put to flight, and
some of them trampled down in the pursuit: Crassus, who commanded the
right wing, was victorious, and, after continuing the pursuit till
nightfall, he sent to Sulla to ask for something for his soldiers to
eat, and to report his success. But, during the proscriptions and
confiscations, on the other hand, he got a bad name, by buying at low
prices large properties, and asking for grants. It is said that, in
the country of the Bruttii, he also proscribed a person, not pursuant
to Sulla's orders, but merely to enrich himself thereby, and that, on
this account, Sulla, who disapproved of his conduct, never employed
him again in any public business. However, Crassus was most expert in
gaining over everybody by flattery; and, on the other hand, he was
easily taken in by flattery from any person. It is further mentioned
as a peculiarity in his character, that, though very greedy of
gain,[23] he hated and abused those most who were like himself.

VII. But Crassus was most annoyed at the military success of Pompeius,
and his enjoying a triumph before he became a senator, and being
called by the citizens Magnus, which means Great. On one occasion,
when somebody observed that Pompeius the Great was approaching,
Crassus smiled, and asked, How great he was? But, as Crassus despaired
of equalling Pompeius in military reputation, he entered upon a
political career, and, by his activity, by pleading in the courts, and
lending money, and by canvassing for candidates, and subjecting
himself to all kinds of scrutiny in conjunction with those who wanted
anything of the people, he acquired a power and reputation equal to
what Pompeius had got by his many and great military services. And the
result to each of them was something unusual; for, when Pompeius was
absent from Rome, his name and his influence in the State, by reason
of his military exploits, was superior to that of Crassus; but when
Pompeius was at Rome, he often fell short of Crassus in influence, for
his haughty temper and habitual pride made him avoid crowds and retire
from the Forum, and seldom give his aid to those who sought it, and
then not readily; his object being to keep his power at a higher
pitch, by exercising it only on his own behalf. But Crassus was always
ready to make himself useful, and he did not keep himself retired, nor
was he difficult of access, but he was always busy in everything that
was going on, and by the general kindness of his behaviour he got the
advantage over the proud bearing of Pompeius. In personal dignity, in
persuasive speech, and attractive expression of countenance it is said
they were both equally fortunate. However, this rivalry did not hurry
Crassus into any personal enmity or ill-will, and though, he was
annoyed at Pompeius and Cæsar receiving greater honour than himself,
he never allowed this jealous feeling to be associated with any
hostility or ill disposition. It is true that when Cæsar was taken and
detained by the pirates, he cried out, "What pleasure you will have,
Crassus, when you hear of my capture!" But afterwards, at least, they
were on friendly terms, and, when Cæsar was going to Iberia, as
prætor,[24] and had no money in consequence of his creditors having
come upon him and seizing all his outfit, Crassus did not leave him in
this difficulty, but got him released, by becoming security for him to
the amount of eight hundred and thirty talents. When all Rome became
divided into three parties, - that of Pompeius, Cæsar and
Crassus, - (for Cato[25] had more reputation than power, and was more
admired than followed), the sober and conservative part of the
citizens adhered to Pompeius; the violent and those who were lightly
moved, were led by the hopes that they had from Cæsar; Crassus, by
keeping a middle position, used both parties for his purposes, and, as
he very often changed in his political views, he was neither a firm
friend nor an irreconcilable enemy, but he would readily give up
either his friendship or his enmity on calculation of interest; so
that within a short interval, he often came forward to speak both for
and against the same men and the same measures. He had also great
influence, both because he was liked and feared, but mainly because he
was feared. Accordingly Sicinius,[26] who was the most violent in his
attacks on the magistrates and popular leaders of the day, in reply to
one who asked, "Why Crassus was the only person whom he did not worry,
and why he let him alone?" said, "That he had hay on his horn:" now,
the Romans were accustomed to tie some hay round the horn of an ox
that butted, as a warning to those who might meet it.

VIII. The insurrection of the gladiators and their devastation of
Italy, which is generally called the war of Spartacus,[27] originated
as follows: - One Lentulus Batiates kept gladiators in Capua, of whom
the majority, who were Gauls and Thracians, had been closely confined,
not for any misbehaviour on their part, but through the villainy of
their purchaser, for the purpose of fighting in the games. Two hundred
of these resolved to make their escape; but their design being
betrayed, those who had notice of the discovery, and succeeded in
getting away, to the number of seventy-eight, took knives and spits
out of a cook's shop, and sallied out. Meeting on the way with some
waggons that were conveying gladiators' arms to another city, they
plundered the waggons, and armed themselves. Seizing on a strong
position, they chose three leaders, of whom the first was Spartacus, a
Thracian of nomadic race, a man not only of great courage and
strength, but, in judgment and mildness of character, superior to his
condition, and more like a Greek than one would expect from his
nation. They say that when Spartacus was first taken to Rome to be
sold, a snake was seen folded over his face while he was sleeping, and
a woman, of the same tribe with Spartacus, who was skilled in
divination, and possessed by the mysterious rites of Dionysus,
declared that this was a sign of a great and formidable power which
would attend him to a happy termination. This woman was at that time
cohabiting with Spartacus, and she made her escape with him.

IX. The gladiators began by repelling those who came against them from
Capua and getting a stock of military weapons, for which they gladly
exchanged their gladiators' arms, which they threw away as a badge of
dishonour, and as barbaric. Clodius[28] the prætor was next sent
against them from Rome, with three thousand men, and he blockaded them
on a mountain which had only one ascent, and that was difficult and
narrow, and Clodius had possession of it; on all other sides there
were steep smooth-faced precipices. On the top of the hill there grew
a great quantity of wild vines, and the men of Spartacus cutting off
all the shoots that were adapted to their purpose, and, intertwining
them, made strong and long ladders, so that when fastened above, they
reached along the face of the precipice to the level ground, and they
all safely descended by them except one man, who stayed to take care
of the arms; and, when all the rest had descended, he let the arms
down, and, having done this, he got down safe himself. The Romans did
not know what was going on; and accordingly, when the gladiators

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