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A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times by Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

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Produced by David Widger

HISTORY OF FRANCE

By M. Guizot

Volume 1 (of 6)

EXTRACT FROM LETTER TO THE PUBLISHERS.

Every history, and especially that of France, is one vast, long drama, in
which events are linked together according to defined laws, and in which
the actors play parts not ready made and learned by heart, parts
depending, in fact, not only upon the accidents of their birth, but also
upon their own ideas and their own will. There are, in the history of
peoples, two sets of causes essentially different, and, at the same time,
closely connected; the natural causes which are set over the general
course of events, and the unrestricted causes which are incidental. Men
do not make the whole of history it has laws of higher origin; but, in
history, men are unrestricted agents who produce for it results and
exercise over it an influence for which they are responsible. The fated
causes and the unrestricted causes, the defined laws of events and the
spontaneous actions of man's free agency--herein is the whole of history.
And in the faithful reproduction of these two elements consist the truth
and the moral of stories from it.

Never was I more struck with this two-fold character of history than in
my tales to my grandchildren. When I commenced with them, they,
beforehand, evinced a lively interest, and they began to listen to me
with serious good will; but when they did not well apprehend the
lengthening chain of events, or when historical personages did not
become, in their eyes, creatures real and free, worthy of sympathy or
reprobation, when the drama was not developed before them with clearness
and animation, I saw their attention grow fitful and flagging; they
required light and life together; they wished to be illumined and
excited, instructed and amused.

At the same time that the difficulty of satisfying this two-fold desire
was painfully felt by me, I discovered therein more means and chances
than I had at first foreseen of succeeding in making my young audience
comprehend the history of France in its complication and its grandeur.
When Corneille observed,--

"In the well-born soul Valor ne'er lingers till due seasons roll,"--

he spoke as truly for intelligence as for valor. When once awakened and
really attentive, young minds are more earnest and more capable of
complete comprehension than any one would suppose. In order to explain
fully to my grandchildren the connection of events and the influence of
historical personages, I was sometimes led into very comprehensive
considerations and into pretty deep studies of character. And in such
cases I was nearly always not only perfectly understood but keenly
appreciated. I put it to the proof in the sketch of Charlemagne's reign
and character; and the two great objects of that great man, who succeeded
in one and failed in the other, received from my youthful audience the
most riveted attention and the most clear comprehension. Youthful minds
have greater grasp than one is disposed to give them credit for, and,
perhaps, men would do well to be as earnest in their lives as children
are in their studies.

In order to attain the end I had set before me, I always took care to
connect my stories or my reflections with the great events or the great
personages of history. When we wish to examine and describe a district
scientifically, we traverse it in all its divisions and in every
direction; we visit plains as well as mountains, villages as well as
cities, the most obscure corners as well as the most famous spots; this
is the way of proceeding with the geologist, the botanist, the
archeologist, the statistician, the scholar. But when we wish
particularly to get an idea of the chief features of a country, its fixed
outlines, its general conformation, its special aspects, its great roads,
we mount the heights; we place ourselves at points whence we can best
take in the totality and the physiognomy of the landscape. And so we
must proceed in history when we wish neither to reduce it to the skeleton
of an abridgment nor extend it to the huge dimensions of a learned work.
Great events and great men are the fixed points and the peaks of history;
and it is thence that we can observe it in its totality, and follow it
along its highways. In my tales to my grandchildren I sometimes lingered
over some particular anecdote which gave me an opportunity of setting in
a vivid light the dominant spirit of an age or the characteristic manners
of a people; but, with rare exceptions, it is always on the great deeds
and the great personages of history that I have relied for making of them
in my tales what they were in reality--the centre and the focus of the
life of France.
GUIZOT.

VAL-RICHER,
December, 1869.

TABLE OF CONTENTS.

I. GAUL 13

II. THE GAULS OUT OF GAUL 27

III. THE ROMANS IN GAUL 48

IV. GAUL CONQUERED BY JULIUS CIESAR 61

V. GAUL UNDER ROMAN DOMINION. . 83

VI. ESTABLISHMENT OF CHRISTIANITY IN GAUL. 111

VII. THE GERMANS IN GAUL--THE FRANKS AND CLOVIS 129

VIII. THE MEROVINGIANS 156

IX. THE MAYORS OF THE PALACE.--THE PEPINS AND THE CHANGE OF DYNASTY
180

X. CHARLEMAGNE AND HIS WARS 210

XI. CHARLEMAGNE AND HIS GOVERNMENT. . 234

XII. DECAY AND FALL OF THE CARLOVINGIANS. 254

XIII. FEUDAL FRANCE AND HUGH CAPET 286

XIV. THE CAPETIANS TO THE TIME OF THE CRUSADES 306

XV. CONQUEST OF ENGLAND BY THE NORMANS 332

XVI. THE CRUSADES, THEIR ORIGIN AND SUCCESS 372

LIST OF STEEL ENGRAVINGS, VOLUME I.

[Illustration: PORTRAIT OF GUIZOT--FRONTISPIECE]

[Illustration: MAP OF ANCIENT FRANCE LYONS]

[Illustration: FROM LA CROIX ROUSSE----86]

[Illustration: BATTLE OF TOLBIACUM----144]

[Illustration: THE BATTLE OF TOURS----193]

[Illustration: THE SUBMISSION OF WITTIKIND----218]

[Illustration: PARIS BESIEGED BY THE NORMANS----259]

[Illustration: NOTRE DAME----310]

[Illustration: Ideal Landscape of Ancient Gaul----13]

[Illustration: Gyptis presenting the Goblet to Euxenes----17]

[Illustration: A Tribe of Gauls on an Expedition----27]

[Illustration: The Gauls in Rome----39]

[Illustration: The Women defending the Cars----58]

[Illustration: The Roman Army invading Gaul----61]

[Illustration: Divitiacus before the Roman Senate----63]

[Illustration: Mounted Gauls----66]

[Illustration: Vercingetorix surrenders to Caesar----81]

[Illustration: Gaul subjugated by the Romans----83]

[Illustration: Eponina and Sabinus hidden in a Vault----97]

[Illustration: Christianity established in Gaul----111]

[Illustration: Druids offering Human Sacrifices----111]

[Illustration: Germans invading Gaul----129]

[Illustration: The Huns at the Battle of Chalons----135]

[Illustration: "Thus didst thou to the Vase of Soissons."----139]

[Illustration: The Sluggard King Journeying----156]

[Illustration: "Thrust him away, or thou diest in his stead."----160]

[Illustration: The Execution of Brunehaut----175]

[Illustration: "The Arabs had decamped silently in the night."----195]

[Illustration: Charlemagne at the Head of his Army----212]

[Illustration: Charlemagne inflicting Baptism upon the Saxons----215]

[Illustration: A Battle between Franks and Saxons----216]

[Illustration: Death of Roland at Roncesvalles----227]

[Illustration: Charlemagne and the General Assembly----239]

[Illustration: Charlemagne presiding at the School of the Palace----246]

[Illustration: Northmen on an Expedition----254]

[Illustration: "He remained there a long while, and his eyes were filled
with tears."----255]

[Illustration: The Barks of the Northmen before Paris----260]

[Illustration: Count Eudes re-entering Paris right through the Besiegers-
---262]

[Illustration: Ditcar the Monk recognizing the Head of Morvan----273]

[Illustration: Hugh Capet elected King----300]

[Illustration: "Who made thee King?"----302]

[Illustration: Gerbert, afterwards Pope Sylvester II----304]

[Illustration: Knights returning from Foray----311]

[Illustration: Knights and Peasants----312]

[Illustration: Robert had a Kindly Feeling for the Weak and Poor----313]

[Illustration: "The Accolade."----324]

[Illustration: Normans landing on English Coast----353]

[Illustration: William the Conqueror reviewing his Army----357]

[Illustration: Edith discovers the Body of Harold----360]

[Illustration: "God willeth it!"----383]

[Illustration: The Four Leaders of the First Crusade----385]

[Illustration: Crusaders on the March----386]

[Illustration: The Assault on St. Jean d'Acre----386]

A POPULAR HISTORY OF FRANCE

FROM THE EARLIEST TIMES.

CHAPTER I.----GAUL.

The Frenchman of to-day inhabits a country, long ago civilized and
Christianized, where, despite of much imperfection and much social
misery, thirty-eight millions of men live in security and peace, under
laws equal for all and efficiently upheld. There is every reason to
nourish great hopes of such a country, and to wish for it more and more
of freedom, glory, and prosperity; but one must be just towards one's own
times, and estimate at their true value advantages already acquired and
progress already accomplished. If one were suddenly carried twenty or
thirty centuries backward, into the midst of that which was then called
Gaul, one would not recognize France. The same mountains reared their
heads; the same plains stretched far and wide; the same rivers rolled on
their course. There is no alteration in the physical formation of the
country; but its aspect was very different. Instead of the fields all
trim with cultivation, and all covered with various produce, one would
see inaccessible morasses and vast forests, as yet uncleared, given up to
the chances of primitive vegetation, peopled with wolves and bears, and
even the _urns_, or huge wild ox, and with elks, too--a kind of beast
that one finds no longer nowadays, save in the colder regions of
north-eastern Europe, such as Lithuania and Courland. Then wandered
over the champaign great herds of swine, as fierce almost as wolves,
tamed only so far as to know the sound of their keeper's horn. The
better sort of fruits and of vegetables were quite unknown; they were
imported into Gaul--the greatest part from Asia, a portion from Africa
and the islands of the Mediterranean; and others, at a later period,
from the New World. Cold and rough was the prevailing temperature.
Nearly every winter the rivers froze sufficiently hard for the passage
of cars. And three or four centuries before the Christian era, on that
vast territory comprised between the ocean, the Pyrenees, the
Mediterranean, the Alps, and the Rhine, lived six or seven millions of
men a bestial life, enclosed in dwellings dark and low, the best of them
built of wood and clay, covered with branches or straw, made in a single
round piece, open to daylight by the door alone, and confusedly heaped
together behind a rampart, not inartistically composed of timber, earth,
and stone, which surrounded and protected what they were pleased to call
a town.

[Illustration: Ideal Landscape of Ancient Gaul----13]

Of even such towns there were scarcely any as yet, save in the most
populous and least uncultivated portion of Gaul; that is to say, in the
southern and eastern regions, at the foot of the mountains of Auvergne
and the Cevennes, and along the coasts of the Mediterranean. In the
north and the west were paltry hamlets, as transferable almost as the
people themselves; and on some islet amidst the morasses, or in some
hidden recess of the forest, were huge intrenchments formed of the trees
that were felled, where the population, at the first sound of the
war-cry, ran to shelter themselves with their flocks and all their
movables. And the war-cry was often heard: men living grossly and idly
are very prone to quarrel and fight. Gaul, moreover, was not occupied by
one and the same nation, with the same traditions and the same chiefs.
Tribes very different in origin, habits, and date of settlement, were
continually disputing the territory. In the south were Iberians or
Aquitanians, Phoenicians and Greeks; in the north and north-west,
Kymrians or Belgians; everywhere else, Gauls or Celts, the most numerous
settlers, who had the honor of giving their name to the country. Who
were the first to come, then? and what was the date of the first
settlement? Nobody knows. Of the Greeks alone does history mark with
any precision the arrival in southern Gaul. The Phoenicians preceded
them by several centuries; but it is impossible to fix any exact time.
The information is equally vague about the period when the Kymrians
invaded the north of Gaul. As for the Gauls and the Iberians, there is
not a word about their first entrance into the country, for they are
discovered there already at the first appearance of the country itself in
the domain of history.

The Iberians, whom Roman writers call Aquitanians, dwelt at the foot of
the Pyrenees, in the territory comprised between the mountains, the
Garonne, and the ocean. They belonged to the race which, under the same
appellation, had peopled Spain; but by what route they came into Gaul is
a problem which we cannot solve. It is much the same in tracing the
origin of every nation, for in those barbarous times men lived and died
without leaving any enduring memorial of their deeds and their destinies;
no monuments; no writings; just a few oral traditions, perhaps, which are
speedily lost or altered. It is in proportion as they become enlightened
and civilized, that men feel the desire and discover the means of
extending their memorial far beyond their own lifetime. That is the
beginning of history, the offspring of noble and useful sentiments, which
cause the mind to dwell upon the future, and to yearn for long
continuance; sentiments which testify to the superiority of man over all
other creatures living upon our earth, which foreshadow the immortality
of the soul, and which are warrant for the progress of the human race by
preserving for the generations to come what has been done and learned by
the generations that disappear.

By whatever route and at whatever epoch the Iberians came into the
south-west of Gaul, they abide there still in the department of the Lower
Pyrenees, under the name of Basques; a people distinct from all its
neighbors in features, costume, and especially language, which resembles
none of the present languages of Europe, contains many words which are to
be found in the names of rivers, mountains, and towns of olden Spain, and
which presents a considerable analogy to the idioms, ancient and modern,
of certain peoples of northern Africa. The Phoenicians did not leave, as
the Iberians did, in the south of France distinct and well-authenticated
descendants. They had begun about 1100 B.C. to trade there. They went
thither in search of furs, and gold and silver, which were got either
from the sand of certain rivers, as for instance the Allege (in Latin
Aurigera), or from certain mines of the Alps, the Cevennes, and the
Pyrenees; they brought in exchange stuffs dyed with purple, necklaces and
rings of glass, and, above all, arms and wine; a trade like that which is
nowadays carried on by the civilized peoples of Europe with the savage
tribes of Africa and America. For the purpose of extending and securing
their commercial expeditions, the Phoenicians founded colonies in several
parts of Gaul, and to them is attributed the earliest origin of Nemausus
(Nimes), and of Alesia, near Semur. But, at the end of three or four
centuries, these colonies fell into decay; the trade of the Phoenicians
was withdrawn from Gaul, and the only important sign it preserved of
their residence was a road which, starting from the eastern Pyrenees,
skirted the Gallic portion of the Mediterranean, crossed the Alps by the
pass of Tenda, and so united Spain, Gaul, and Italy. After the
withdrawal of the Phoenicians this road was kept up and repaired, at
first by the Greeks of Marseilles, and subsequently by the Romans.

As merchants and colonists, the Greeks were, in Gaul, the successors of
the Phoenicians, and Marseilles was one of their first and most
considerable colonies. At the time of the Phoenicians' decay in Gaul, a
Greek people, the Rhodians, had pushed their commercial enterprises to a
great distance, and, in the words of the ancient historians, held the
empire of the sea. Their ancestors had, in former times, succeeded the
Phoenicians in the island of Rhodes, and they likewise succeeded them in
the south of Gaul, and founded, at the mouth of the Rhone, a colony
called Rhodanusia or Rhoda, with the same name as that which they had
already founded on the north-east coast of Spain, and which is nowadays
the town of Rosas, in Catalonia. But the importance of the Rhodians on
the southern coast of Gaul was short-lived. It had already sunk very low
in the year 600 B.C., when Euxenes, a Greek trader, coming from Phocea,
an Ionian town of Asia Minor, to seek his fortune, landed from a bay
eastward of the Rhone. The Segobrigians, a tribe of the Gallic race,
were in occupation of the neighboring country. Nann, their chief, gave
the strangers kindly welcome, and took them home with him to a great
feast which he was giving for his daughter's marriage, who was called
Gyptis, according to some, and Petta, according to other historians. A
custom which exists still in several cantons of the Basque country, and
even at the centre of France in Morvan, a mountainous district of the
department of the Nievre, would that the maiden should appear only at the
end of the banquet, and holding in her hand a filled wine-cup, and that
the guest to whom she should present it should become the husband of her
choice. By accident, or quite another cause, say the ancient legends,
Gyptis stopped opposite Euxenes, and handed him the cup. Great was the
surprise, and, probably, anger amongst the Gauls who were present. But
Nann, believing he recognized a commandment from his gods, accepted the
Phocean as his son-in-law, and gave him as dowry the bay where he had
landed, with some cantons of the territory around. Euxenes, in
gratitude, gave his wife the Greek name of Aristoxena (that is, "the best
of hostesses"), sent away his ship to Phocea for colonists, and, whilst
waiting for them, laid in the centre of the bay, on a peninsula hollowed
out harbor-wise, towards the south, the foundations of a town, which he
called Massilia--thence Marseilles.

[Illustration: Gyptis presenting the Goblet to Euxenes----17]

Scarcely a year had elapsed when Euxenes' ship arrived from Phocea, and
with it several galleys, bringing colonists full of hope, and laden with
provisions, utensils, arms, seeds, vine-cuttings, and olive-cuttings,
and, moreover, a statue of Diana, which the colonists had gone to fetch
from the celebrated temple of that goddess at Ephesus, and which her
priestess, Aristarche, accompanied to its new country.

The activity and prosperity of Marseilles, both within and without, were
rapidly developed. She carried her commerce wherever the Phoenicians and
the Rhodians had marked out a road; she repaired their forts; she took to
herself their establishments; and she placed on her medals, to signify
dominion, the rose, the emblem of Rhodes, beside the lion of Marseilles.
But Nann, the Gallic chieftain, who had protected her infancy, died; and
his son, Conran, shared the jealousy felt by the Segobrigians and the
neighboring peoplets towards the new corners. He promised and really
resolved to destroy the new city. It was the time of the flowering of
the vine, a season of great festivity amongst the Ionian Greeks, and
Marseilles thought solely of the preparations for the feast. The houses
and public places were being decorated with branches and flowers. No
guard was set; no work was done. Conran sent into the town a number of
his men, some openly, as if to take part in the festivities, others
hidden at the bottom of the cars which conveyed into Marseilles the
branches and foliage from the outskirts. He himself went and lay in
ambush in a neighboring glen, with seven thousand men, they say, but the
number is probably exaggerated, and waited for his emissaries to open the
gates to him during the night. But once more a woman, a near relation of
the Gallic chieftain, was the guardian angel of the Greeks, and revealed
the plot to a young man of Marseilles, with whom she was in love. The
gates were immediately shut, and so many Segobrigians as happened to be
in the town were massacred. Then, when night came on, the inhabitants,
armed, went forth to surprise Conran in the ambush where he was awaiting
the moment to surprise them. And there he fell with all his men.

Delivered as they were from this danger, the Massilians nevertheless
remained in a difficult and disquieting situation. The peoplets around,
in coalition against them, attacked them often, and threatened them
incessantly. But whilst they were struggling against these
embarrassments, a grand disaster, happening in the very same spot whence
they had emigrated half a century before, was procuring them a great
accession of strength and the surest means of defence. In the year 542
B.C., Phocea succumbed beneath the efforts of Cyrus, King of Persia, and
her inhabitants, leaving to the conqueror empty streets and deserted
houses, took to their ships in a body, to transfer their homes elsewhere.
A portion of this floating population made straight for Marseilles;
others stopped at Corsica, in the harbor of Alalia, another Phocean
colony. But at the end of five years they too, tired of piratical life
and of the incessant wars they had to sustain against the Carthaginians,
quitted Corsica, and went to rejoin their compatriots in Gaul.

Thenceforward Marseilles found herself in a position to face her enemies.
She extended her walls all round the bay, and her enterprises far away.
She founded on the southern coast of Gaul and on the eastern coast of
Spain, permanent settlements, which are to this day towns: eastward of
the Rhone, Hercules' harbor, Moncecus (Monaco), Niccea (Nice), Antipolis
(Antibes); westward, Heraclea Cacabaria (Saint-Gilles), Agaththae
(Agdevall), Emporia; (Ampurias in Catalonia), &c., &c. In valley of the
Rhone, several towns of the Gauls, Cabellio were (Cavaili like on), Greek
Avenio (Avignon), Arelate (Arles), for instance, colonies, so great there
was the number of travellers or established merchants who spoke Greek.
With this commercial activity Marseilles united intellectual and
scientific activity; her grammarians were among the first to revise and
annotate the poems of Homer; and bold travellers from Marseilles,
Euthymenes and Pytheas by name, cruised, one along the western coast of
Africa beyond the Straits of Gibraltar, and the other the southern and
western coasts of Europe, from the mouth of the Tanais (Don), in the
Black Sea, to the latitudes and perhaps into the interior of the Baltic.
They lived, both of them, in the second half of the fourth century B.C.,
and they wrote each a Periplus, or tales of their travels, which have
unfortunately been almost entirely lost.

But whatever may have been her intelligence and activity, a single town
situated at the extremity of Gaul and peopled with foreigners could have
but little influence over so vast a country and its inhabitants. At
first civilization is very hard and very slow; it requires many
centuries, many great events, and many years of toil to overcome the
early habits of a people, and cause them to exchange the pleasures, gross
indeed, but accompanied with the idleness and freedom of barbarian life,
for the toilful advantages of a regulated social condition. By dint of
foresight, perseverance, and courage, the merchants of Marseilles and her
colonies crossed by two or three main lines the forests, morasses, and
heaths through the savage tribes of Gauls, and there effected their
exchanges, but to the right and left they penetrated but a short
distance. Even on their main lines their traces soon disappeared; and at
the commercial settlements which they established here and there they
were often far more occupied in self-defence than in spreading their
example. Beyond a strip of land of uneven breadth, along the
Mediterranean, and save the space peopled towards the south-west by the
Iberians, the country, which received its name from the former of the
two, was occupied by the Gauls and the Kymrians; by the Gauls in the
centre, south-east and east, in the highlands of modern France, between
the Alps, the Vosges, the mountains of Auvergne and the Cevennes; by the
Kymrians in the north, north-west, and west, in the lowlands, from the
western boundary of the Gauls to the ocean.

Whether the Gauls and the Kymrians were originally of the same race, or
at least of races closely connected; whether they were both anciently
comprised under the general name of Celts; and whether the Kymrians, if
they were not of the same race as the Gauls, belonged to that of the
Germans, the final conquerors of the Roman empire, are questions which
the learned have been a long, long while discussing without deciding.
The only facts which seem to be clear and certain are the following.

The ancients for a long while applied without distinction the name of
Celts to the peoples who lived in the west and north of Europe,
regardless of precise limits, language, or origin. It was a geographical
title applicable to a vast but ill-explored territory, rather than a real
historical name of race or nation. And so, in the earliest times, Gauls,
Germans, Bretons, and even Iberians, appear frequently confounded under
the name of Celts, peoples of Celtica.

Little by little this name is observed to become more restricted and more
precise. The Iberians of Spain are the first to be detached; then the
Germans. In the century preceding the Christian era, the Gauls, that is,
the peoples inhabiting Gaul, are alone called Celts. We begin even to
recognize amongst them diversities of race, and to distinguish the
Iberians of Gaul, alias Aquitanians, and the Kymrians or Belgians from
the Gauls, to whom the name of Celts is confined. Sometimes even it is
to a confederation of certain Gallic tribes that the name Specially
applies. However it be, the Gauls appear to have been the first
inhabitants of western Europe. In the most ancient historical memorials
they are found there, and not only in Gaul, but in Great Britain, in
Ireland, and in the neighboring islets. In Gaul, after a long
predominance, they commingled with other races to form the French nation.
But, in this commingling numerous traces of their language, monuments,
manners, and names of persons and places, survived and still exist,
especially to the east and south--cast, in local customs and vernacular
dialects. In Ireland, in the highlands of Scotland, in the Hebrides and
the Isle of Man, Gauls (Gaels) still live under their primitive name.
There we still have the Gaelic race and tongue, free, if not from any
change, at least from absorbent fusion.

From the seventh to the fourth century B.C., a new population spread over
Gaul, not at once, but by a series of invasions, of which the two
principal took place at the two extremes of that epoch. They called
themselves Kymrians or Kimrians, whence the Romans made Cimbrians, which
recalls Cimmerii or Cimmerians, the name of a people whom the Greeks
placed on the western bank of the Black Sea and in the Cimmerian
peninsula, called to this day Crimea. During these irregular and
successively repeated movements of wandering populations, it often
happened that tribes of different races met, made terms, united, and
finished by amalgamation under one name. All the peoples that
successively invaded Europe, Gauls, Kymrians, Germans, belonged at first,
in Asia, whence they came, to a common stern; the diversity of their
languages, traditions, and manners, great as it already was at the time
of their appearance in the West, was the work of time and of the diverse
circumstances in the midst of which they had lived; but there always
remained amongst them traces of a primitive affinity which allowed of
sudden and frequent comings, amidst their tumultuous dispersion.

The Kymrians, who crossed the Rhine and flung themselves into northern
Gaul towards the middle of the fourth century B.C., called themselves
Bolg, or Belg, or Belgians, a name which indeed is given to them by Roman
writers, and which has remained that of the country they first invaded.
They descended southwards, to the banks of the Seine and the Marne.
There they encountered the Kymrians of former invasions, who not only had
spread over the country comprised between the Seine and the Loire, to the
very heart of the peninsula bordered by the latter river, but had crossed
the sea, and occupied a portion of the large island opposite Gaul,
crowding back the Gauls, who had preceded them, upon Ireland and the
highlands of Scotland. It was from one of these tribes and its
chieftain, called Pryd or Prydain, Brit or Britain, that Great Britain
and Brittany in France received the name which they have kept.

Each of these races, far from forming a single people bound to the same
destiny and under the same chieftains, split into peoplets, more or less
independent, who foregathered or separated according to the shifts of
circumstances, and who pursued, each on their own account and at their
own pleasure, their fortunes or their fancies. The Ibero-Aquitanians
numbered twenty tribes; the Gauls twenty-two nations; the original
Kymrians, mingled with the Gauls between the Loire and the Garonne,
seventeen; and the Kymro-Belgians twenty-three. These sixty-two nations
were subdivided into several hundreds of tribes; and these petty
agglomerations were distributed amongst rival confederations or leagues,
which disputed one with another the supremacy over such and such a
portion of territory. Three grand leagues existed amongst the Gauls;
that of the Arvernians, formed of peoplets established in the country
which received from them the name of Auvergne; that of the AEduans, in
Burgundy, whose centre was Bibracte (Autun); and that of the Sequanians,
in Franche-Comte, whose centre was Vesontio (Besancon). Amongst the
Kymrians of the West, the Armoric league bound together the tribes of
Brittany and lower Normandy. From these alliances, intended to group
together scattered forces, sprang fresh passions or interests, which
became so many fresh causes of discord and hostility. And, in these
divers-agglomerations, government was everywhere almost equally irregular
and powerless to maintain order or found an enduring state. Kymrians,
Gauls, or Iberians were nearly equally ignorant, improvident, slaves to
the shiftings of their ideas and the sway of their passions, fond of war
and idleness and rapine and feasting, of gross and savage pleasures. All
gloried in hanging from the breast-gear of their horses, or nailing to
the doors of their houses, the heads of their enemies. All sacrificed
human victims to their gods; all tied their prisoners to trees, and
burned or flogged them to death; all took pleasure in wearing upon their
heads or round their arms, and depicting upon their naked bodies,
fantastic ornaments, which gave them a wild appearance. An unbridled
passion for wine and strong liquors was general amongst them: the traders
of Italy, and especially of Marseilles, brought supplies into every part
of Gaul; from interval to interval there were magazines established,
whither the Gauls flocked to sell for a flask of wine their furs, their
grain, their cattle, their slaves. "It was easy," says an ancient
historian, "to get the Ganymede for the liquor." Such are the essential
characteristics of barbaric life, as they have been and as they still are
at several points of our globe, amongst people of the same grade in the
scale of civilization. They existed in nearly an equal degree amongst
the different races of ancient Gaul, whose resemblance was rendered much
stronger thereby than their diversity in other respects by some of their
customs, traditions, or ideas.

In their case, too, there is no sign of those permanent demarcations,
those rooted antipathies, and that impossibility of unity which are
observable amongst peoples whose original moral condition is really very
different. In Asia, Africa, and America, the English, the Dutch, the
Spanish, and the French have been and are still in frequent contact with
the natives of the country--Hindoos, Malays, Negroes, and Indians; and,
in spite of this contact, the races have remained widely separated one
from another. In ancient Gaul not only did Gauls, Kymrians, and Iberians
live frequently in alliance and almost intimacy, but they actually
commingled and cohabited without scruple on the same territory. And so
we find in the midst of the Iberians, towards the mouth of the Garonne, a
Gallic tribe, the Viviscan Biturigians, come from the neighborhood of
Bourges, where the bulk of the nation was settled: they had been driven
thither by one of the first invasions of the Kymrians, and peaceably
taken root there; Burdigaia, afterwards Bordeaux, was the chief
settlement of this tribe, and even then a trading-place between the
Mediterranean and the ocean. A little farther on, towards the south, a
Kymrian tribe, the Bolans, lived isolated from its race, in the
waste-lands of the Iberians, extracting the resin from the pines which
grew in that territory. To the south-west, in the country situated
between the Garonne, the eastern Pyrenees, the Cevennes, and the Rhone,
two great tribes of Kymro-Belgians, the Bolg, Volg, Volk, or Voles,
Arecomican and Tectosagian, came to settle, towards the end of the fourth
century B. C., in the midst of the Iberian and Gallic peoplets; and
there is nothing to show that the new comers lived worse with their
neighbors than the latter had previously lived together.

It is evident that amongst all these peoplets, whatever may have been
their diversity of origin, there was sufficient similitude of social
condition and manners to make agreement a matter neither very difficult
nor very long to accomplish.

On the other hand, and as a natural consequence, it was precarious and
often of short duration: Iberian, Gallic, or Kymrian as they might be,
these peoplets underwent frequent displacements, forced or voluntary, to
escape from the attacks of a more powerful neighbor; to find new
pasturage; in consequence of internal dissension; or, perhaps, for the
mere pleasure of warfare and running risks, and to be delivered from the
tediousness of a monotonous life. From the earliest times to the first
century before the Christian era, Gaul appears a prey to this incessant
and disorderly movement of the population; they change settlement and
neighborhood; disappear from one point and reappear at another; cross one
another; avoid one another; absorb and are absorbed. And the movement
was not confined within Gaul; the Gauls of every race went, sometimes in
very numerous hordes, to seek far away plunder and a settlement. Spain,
Italy, Germany, Greece, Asia Minor, and Africa have been in turn the
theatre of those Gallic expeditions which entailed long wars, grand
displacements of peoples, and sometimes the formation of new nations.
Let us make a slight acquaintance with this outer history of the Gauls;
for it is well worth while to follow them a space upon their distant
wanderings. We will then return to the soil of France, and concern
ourselves only with what has passed within her boundaries.

CHAPTER II. THE GAULS OUT OF GAUL.

About three centuries B.C. numerous hordes of Gauls crossed the Alps and
penetrated to the centre of Etruria, which is nowadays Tuscany. The
Etruscans, being then at war with Rome, proposed to take them, armed and
equipped as they had come, into their own pay. "If you want our hands,"
answered the Gauls, "against your enemies, the Romans, here they are at
your service--but on one condition: give us lands."

[Illustration: A Tribe of Gauls on an Expedition----27]

A century afterwards other Gallic hordes, descending in like manner upon
Italy, had commenced building houses and tilling fields along the
Adriatic, on the territory where afterwards was Aquileia. The Roman
Senate decreed that their settlement should be opposed, and that they
should be summoned to give up their implements and even their arms. Not
being in a position to resist, the Gauls sent representatives to Rome.
They, being introduced into the Senate, said, "The multitude of people in
Gaul, the want of lands, and necessity forced us to cross the Alps to
seek a home. We saw plains uncultivated and uninhabited. We settled
there without doing any one harm. . . . We ask nothing but lands. We
will live peacefully on them under the laws of the republic."

Again, a century later, or thereabouts, some Gallic Kymrians, mingled
with Teutons or Germans, said also to the Roman Senate, "Give us a little
land as pay, and do what you please with our hands and weapons."

Want of room and means of subsistence have, in fact, been the principal
causes which have at all times thrust barbarous people, and especially
the Gauls, out of their fatherland. An immense extent of country is
required for indolent hordes who live chiefly upon the produce of the
chase and of their flocks; and when there is no longer enough of forest
or pasturage for the families that become too numerous, there is a swarm
from the hive, and a search for livelihood elsewhere. The Gauls
emigrated in every direction. To find, as they said, rivers and lands,
they marched from north to south, and from east to west. They crossed at
one time the Rhine, at another the Alps, at another the Pyrenees. More
than fifteen centuries B.C. they had already thrown themselves into
Spain, after many fights, no doubt, with the Iberians established between
the Pyrenees and the Garonne. They penetrated north-westwards to the
northern point of the Peninsula, into the province which received from
them and still bears the name of Galicia; south-eastwards to the southern
point, between the river Anas (nowadays Guadiana) and the ocean, where
they founded a Little Celtica; and centrewards and southwards from
Castile to Andalusia, where the amalgamation of two races brought about
the creation of a new people, that found a place in history as
Celtiberians. And twelve centuries after those events, about 220 B.C.,
we find the Gallic peoplet, which had planted itself in the south of
Portugal, energetically defending its independence against the
neighboring Carthaginian colonies. Indortius, their chief, conquered and
taken prisoner, was beaten with rods and hung upon the cross, in the
sight of his army, after having had his eyes put out by command of
Hamilcar-Barca, the Carthaginian general; but a Gallic slave took care to
avenge him by assassinating, some years after, at a hunting-party,
Hasdrubal, son-in-law of Hamilcar, who had succeeded to the command. The
slave was put to the torture; but, indomitable in his hatred, he died
insulting the Africans.

A little after the Gallic invasion of Spain, and by reason perhaps of
that very movement, in the first half of the fourteenth century B.C.,
another vast horde of Gauls, who called themselves Anahra, Ambra,
Ambrons, that is, "braves," crossed the Alps, occupied northern Italy,
descended even to the brink of the Tiber, and conferred the name of
Ambria or Umbria on the country where they founded their dominion. If
ancient accounts might be trusted, this dominion was glorious and
flourishing, for Umbria numbered, they say, three hundred and fifty-eight
towns; but falsehood, according to the Eastern proverb, lurks by the
cradle of nations. At a much later epoch, in the second century B.C.,
fifteen towns of Liguria contained altogether, as we learn from Livy, but
twenty thousand souls. It is plain, then, what must really have been--
even admitting their existence--the three hundred and fifty-eight towns
of Umbria. However, at the end of two or three centuries, this Gallic
colony succumbed beneath the superior power of the Etruscans, another set
of invaders from eastern Europe, perhaps from the north of Greece, who
founded in Italy a mighty empire. The Umbrians or Ambrons were driven
out or subjugated. Nevertheless some of their peoplets, preserving their
name and manners, remained in the mountains of upper Italy, where they
were to be subsequently discovered by fresh and more celebrated Gallic
invasions.

Those just spoken of are of such antiquity and obscurity, that we note
their place in history without being able to say how they came to fill
it. It is only with the sixth century before our era that we light upon
the really historical expeditions of the Gauls away from Gaul, those, in
fact, of which we may follow the course and estimate the effects.

Towards the year 587 B.C., almost at the very moment when the Phoceans
had just founded Marseilles, two great Gallic hordes got in motion at the
same time, and crossed, one the Rhine, the other the Alps, making one for
Germany, the other for Italy. The former followed the course of the
Danube and settled in Illyria, on the right bank of the river. It is too
much, perhaps, to say that they settled; the greater part of them
continued wandering and fighting, sometimes amalgamating with the
peoplets they encountered, sometimes chasing them and exterminating them,
whilst themselves were incessantly pushed forward by fresh bands coming
also from Gaul. Thus marching and spreading, leaving here and there on
their route, along the rivers and in the valleys of the Alps, tribes that
remained and founded peoples, the Gauls had arrived, towards the year 340
B.C., at the confines of Macedonia, at the time when Alexander, the son
of Philip, who was already famous, was advancing to the same point to
restrain the ravages of the neighboring tribes, perhaps of the Gauls
themselves. From curiosity, or a desire to make terms with Alexander,
certain Gauls betook themselves to his camp. He treated them well, made
them sit at his table, took pleasure in exhibiting his magnificence
before them, and in the midst of his carouse made his interpreter ask
them what they were most afraid of.

"We fear nought," they answered, "unless it be the fall of heaven; but we
set above everything the friendship of a man like thee." "The Celts are
proud," said Alexander to his Macedonians; and he promised them his
friendship. On the death of Alexander, the Gauls, as mercenaries,
entered, in Europe and Asia, the service of the kings who had been his
generals. Ever greedy, fierce, and passionate, they were almost equally
dangerous as auxiliaries and as neighbors. Antigonus, King of Macedonia,
was to pay the band he had enrolled a gold piece a head. They brought
their wives and children with them, and at the end of the campaign they
claimed pay for their following as well as for themselves: "We were
promised," said they, "a gold piece a head for each Gaul; and these are
also Gauls."

Before long they tired of fighting the battles of another; their power
accumulated; fresh hordes, in great numbers, arrived amongst them about
the year 281 B.C. They had before them Thrace, Macedonia, Thessaly,
Greece, rich, but distracted and weakened by civil strife. They effected
an entrance at several points, devastating, plundering, loading their
cars with booty, and dividing their prisoners into two parts; one offered
in sacrifice to their gods, the other strung up to trees and abandoned to
the _gais_ and _matars,_ or javelins and pikes of the conquerors.

Like all barbarians, they, both for pleasure and on principle, added
insolence to ferocity. Their Brenn, or most famous chieftain, whom the
Latins and Greeks call Brennus, dragged in his train Macedonian
prisoners, short, mean, and with shaven heads, and exhibiting them beside
Gallic warriors, tall, robust, long-haired, adorned with chains of gold,
said, "This is what we are, that is what our enemies are."

Ptolemy the Thunderbolt, King of Macedonia, received with haughtiness
their first message requiring of him a ransom for his dominions if he
wished to preserve peace. "Tell those who sent you," he replied to the
Gallic deputation, "to lay down their arms and give up to me their
chieftains. I will then see what peace I can grant them." On the return
of the deputation, the Gauls were moved to laughter. "He shall soon
see," said they, "whether it was in his interest or our own that we
offered him peace." And, indeed, in the first engagement, neither the
famous Macedonian phalanx, nor the elephant he rode, could save King
Ptolemy; the phalanx was broken, the elephant riddled with javelins, the
king himself taken, killed, and his head marched about the field of
battle on the top of a pike.

Macedonia was in consternation; there was a general flight from the open
country, and the gates of the towns were closed. "The people," says an
historian, "cursed the folly of King Ptolemy, and invoked the names of
Philip and Alexander, the guardian deities of their land."

Three years later, another and a more formidable invasion came bursting
upon Thessaly and Greece. It was, according to the unquestionably
exaggerated account of the ancient historians, two hundred thousand
strong, and commanded by that famous, ferocious, and insolent Brennus
mentioned before. His idea was to strike a blow which should
simultaneously enrich the Gauls and stun the Greeks. He meant to plunder
the temple at Delphi, the most venerated place in all Greece, whither
flowed from century to century all kinds of offerings, and where, no
doubt, enormous treasure was deposited. Such was, in the opinion of the
day, the sanctity of the place, that, on the rumor of the projected
profanation, several Greeks essayed to divert the Gallic Brenn himself,
by appealing to his superstitious fears; but his answer was, "The gods
have no need of wealth; it is they who distribute it to men."

All Greece was moved. The nations of the Peloponnese closed the isthmus
of Corinth by a wall. Outside the isthmus, the Beeotians, Phocidians,
Locrians, Megarians, and AEtolians formed a coalition under the
leadership of the Athenians; and, as their ancestors had done scarcely
two hundred years before against Xerxes and the Persians, they advanced
in all haste to the pass of Thermopylae, to stop there the new
barbarians.

And for several days they did stop them; and instead of three hundred
heroes, as of yore in the case of Leonidas and his Spartans, only forty
Greeks, they say, fell in the first engagement. 'Amongst them was a
young Athenian, Cydias by name, whose shield was hung in the temple of
Zeus the savior, at Athens, with this inscription:--

THIS SHIELD, DEDICATED TO ZEUS, IS THAT OF A VALIANT MAN,

CYDIAS. IT STILL BEWAILS ITS

YOUNG MASTER. FOR THE FIRST TIME

HE BARE IT ON HIS LEFT ARM

WHEN TERRIBLE ARES CRUSHED

THE GAULS.

But soon, just as in the case of the Persians, traitors guided Brennus
and his Gauls across the mountain-paths; the position of Thermopylae was
turned; the Greek army owed its safety to the Athenian galleys; and by
evening of the same day the barbarians appeared in sight of Delphi.

Brennus would have led them at once to the assault. He showed them, to
excite them, the statues, vases, cars, monuments of every kind, laden
with gold, which adorned the approaches of the town and of the temple:
"'Tis pure gold--massive gold," was the news he had spread in every
direction. But the very cupidity he provoked was against his plan; for
the Gauls fell out to plunder. He had to put off the assault until the
morrow. The night was passed in irregularities and orgies.

The Greeks, on the contrary, prepared with ardor for the fight. Their
enthusiasm was intense. Those barbarians, with their half-nakedness,
their grossness, their ferocity, their ignorance, and their impiety, were
revolting. They committed murder and devastation like dolts. They left
their dead on the field, without burial. They engaged in battle without
consulting priest or augur. It was not only their goods, but their
families, their life, the honor of their country, and the sanctuary of
their religion, that the Greeks were defending, and they might rely on
the protection of the gods. The oracle of Apollo had answered, "I and
the white virgins will provide for this matter." The people surrounded
the temple, and the priests supported and encouraged the people. During
the night small bodies of AEtolians, Amphisseans, and Phocidians arrived
one after another. Four thousand men had joined within Delphi, when the
Gallic bands, in the morning, began to mount the narrow and rough incline
which led up to the town. The Greeks rained down from above a deluge of
stones and other missiles. The Gauls recoiled, but recovered
themselves. The besieged fell back on the nearest streets of the town,
leaving open the approach to the temple, upon which the barbarians threw
themselves. The pillage of the shrines had just commenced when the sky
looked threatening; a storm burst forth, the thunder echoed, the rain
fell, the hail rattled. Readily taking advantage of this incident, the
priests and the augurs sallied from the temple clothed in their sacred
garments, with hair dishevelled and sparkling eyes, proclaiming the
advent of the god: "'Tis he! we saw him shoot athwart the temple's vault,
which opened under his feet; and with him were two virgins, who issued
from the temples of Artemis and Athena. We saw them with our eyes. We
heard the twang of their bows, and the clash of their armor." Hearing
these cries and the roar of the tempest, the Greeks dash on--the Gauls
are panic-stricken, and rush headlong down the bill. The Greeks push on
in pursuit. Rumors of fresh apparitions are spread; three heroes,
Hyperochus, Laodocus, and Pyrrhus, son of Achilles, have issued from
their tombs hard by the temple, and are thrusting at the Gauls with their
lances. The rout was speedy and general; the barbarians rushed to the
cover of their camp; but the camp was attacked next morning by the Greeks
from the town and by re-enforcements from the country places. Brennus
and the picked warriors about him made a gallant resistance, but defeat
was a foregone conclusion. Brennus was wounded, and his comrades bore
him off the field. The barbarian army passed the whole day in flight.
During the ensuing night a new access of terror seized them they again
took to flight, and four days after the passage of Thermopylae some
scattered bands, forming scarcely a third of those who had marched on
Delphi, rejoined the division which had remained behind, some leagues
from the town, in the plains watered by the Cephissus. Brennus summoned
his comrades "Kill all the wounded and me," said he; "burn your cars;
make Cichor king; and away at full speed." Then he called for wine,
drank himself drunk, and stabbed himself. Cichor did cut the throats of
the wounded, and traversed, flying and fighting, Thessaly and Macedonia;
and on returning whence they had set out, the Gauls dispersed, some to
settle at the foot of a neighboring mountain under the command of a
chieftain named Bathanat or Baedhannatt, i.e., son of the wild boar;
others to march back towards their own country; the greatest part to
resume the same life of incursion and adventure. But they changed the
scene of operations. Greece, Macedonia, and Thrace were exhausted by
pillage, and made a league to resist. About 278 B.C. the Gauls crossed
the Hellespont and passed into Asia Minor. There, at one time in the pay
of the kings of Bithynia, Pergamos, Cappadocia, and Syria, or of the free
commercial cities which were struggling against the kings, at another
carrying on wars on their own account, they wandered for more than thirty
years, divided into three great hordes, which parcelled out the
territories among themselves, overran and plundered them during the fine
weather, intrenched themselves during winter in their camp of cars, or in
some fortified place, sold their services to the highest bidder, changed
masters according to interest or inclination, and by their bravery became
the terror of these effeminate populations and the arbiters of these
petty states.

At last both princes and people grew weary. Antiochus, King of Syria,
attacked one of the three bands,--that of the Tectosagians,--conquered
it, and cantoned it in a district of Upper Phrygia. Later still, about
241 B.C., Eumenes, sovereign of Pergamos, and Attalus, his successor,
drove and shut up the other two bands, the Tolistoboians and Troemians,
likewise in the same region. The victories of Attalus over the Gauls
excited veritable enthusiasm. He was celebrated as a special envoy from
Zeus. He took the title of King, which his predecessors had not hitherto
borne. He had his battles showily painted; and that he might triumph at
the same time both in Europe and Asia, he sent one of the pictures to
Athens, where it was still to be seen three centuries afterwards, hanging
upon the wall of the citadel. Forced to remain stationary, the Gallic
hordes became a people,--the Galatians,--and the country they occupied
was called Galatia. They lived there some fifty years, aloof from the
indigenous population of Greeks and Phrygians, whom they kept in an
almost servile condition, preserving their warlike and barbarous habits,
resuming sometimes their mercenary service, and becoming once more the
bulwark or the terror of neighboring states. But at the beginning of the
second century before our era, the Romans had entered Asia, in pursuit of
their great enemy, Hannibal. They had just beaten, near Magnesia,
Antiochus, King of Syria. In his army they had encountered men of lofty
stature, with hair light or dyed red, half naked, marching to the fight
with loud cries, and terrible at the first onset. They recognized the
Gauls, and resolved to destroy or subdue them. The consul, Cn. Manlius,
had the duty and the honor. Attacked in their strongholds on Mount
Olympus and Mount Magaba, 189 B.C., the three Gallic bands, after a short
but stout resistance, were conquered and subjugated; and thenceforth
losing all national importance, they amalgamated little by little with
the Asiatic populations around them. From time to time they are still
seen to reappear with their primitive manners and passions. Rome humored
them; Mithridates had them for allies in his long struggle with the
Romans. He kept by him a Galatian guard; and when he sought death, and
poison failed him, it was the captain of the guard, a Gaul named
Bituitus, whom he asked to run him through. That is the last historical
event with which the Gallic name is found associated in Asia.

Nevertheless the amalgamation of the Gauls of Galatia with the natives
always remained very imperfect; for towards the end of the fourth century
of the Christian era they did not speak Greek, as the latter did, but
their national tongue, that of the Kymro-Belgians; and St. Jerome
testifies that it differed very little from that which was spoken in
Belgica itself, in the region of Troves.

The Romans had good ground for keeping a watchful eye, from the time they
met them, upon the Gauls, and for dreading them particularly. At the
time when they determined to pursue them into the mountains of Asia
Minor, they were just at the close of a desperate struggle, maintained
against them for four hundred years, in Italy itself; "a struggle," says
Sallust, "in which it was a question not of glory, but of existence, for
Rome." It was but just now remarked that at the beginning of the sixth
century before our era, whilst, under their chieftain Sigovesus, the
Gallic bands whose history has occupied the last few pages were crossing
the Rhine and entering Germany, other bands, under the command of
Bellovesus, were traversing the Alps and swarming into Italy. From 587
to 521 B.C. five Gallic expeditions, formed of Gallic, Kymric, and
Ligurian tribes, followed the same route and invaded successively the two
banks of the Po--the bottomless river, as they called it. The Etruscans,
who had long before, it will be remembered, themselves wrested that
country from a people of Gallic origin, the Umbrians or Ambrons, could
not make head against the new conquerors, aided, may be, by the remains
of the old population. The well-built towns, the cultivation of the
country, the ports and canals that had been dug, nearly all these labors
of Etruscan civilization disappeared beneath the footsteps of these
barbarous hordes that knew only how to destroy, and one of which gave its
chieftain the name of Hurricane (Elitorius, Ele-Dov). Scarcely five
Etruscan towns, Mantua and Ravenna amongst others, escaped disaster. The
Gauls also founded towns, such as Mediolanum (Milan), Brixia (Brescia),
Verona, Bononia (Bologna), Sena-Gallica (Sinigaglia), &c. But for a long
while they were no more than intrenched camps, fortified places, where
the population shut themselves up in case of necessity. "They, as a
general rule, straggled about the country," says Polybius, the most
correct and clear-sighted of the ancient historians, "sleeping on grass
or straw, living on nothing but meat, busying themselves about nothing
but war and a little husbandry, and counting as riches nothing but flocks
and gold, the only goods that can be carried away at pleasure and on
every occasion."

During nearly thirty years the Gauls thus scoured not only Upper Italy,
which they had almost to themselves, but all the eastern coast, and up to
the head of the peninsula, encountering along the Adriatic, and in the
rich and effeminate cities of Magna Graecia, Sybaris, Tarentum, Crotona,
and Locri, no enemy capable of resisting them. But in the year 391 B.C.,
finding themselves cooped up in their territory, a strong band of Gauls
crossed the Apennines, and went to demand from the Etruscans of Clusium
the cession of a portion of their lands. The only answer Clusium made
was to close her gates. The Gauls formed up around the walls. Clusium
asked help from Rome, with whom, notwithstanding the rivalry between the
Etruscan and Roman nations, she had lately been on good terms. The
Romans promised first their good offices with the Gauls, afterwards
material support; and thus were brought face to face those two peoples,
fated to continue for four centuries a struggle which was to be ended
only by the complete subjection of Gaul.

The details of that struggle belong specially to Roman history; they have
been transmitted to us only by Roman historians; and the Romans it was
who were left ultimately in possession of the battle-field, that is, of
Italy. It will suffice here to make known the general march of events
and the most characteristic incidents.

Four distinct periods may be recognized in this history; and each marks a
different phase in the course of events, and, so to speak, an act of the
drama. During the first period, which lasted forty-two years, from 391
to 349 B.C., the Gauls carried on a war of aggression and conquest
against Rome. Not that such had been their original design; on the
contrary, they replied, when the Romans offered intervention between them
and Clusium, "We ask only for lands, of which we are in need; and Clusium
has more than she can cultivate. Of the Romans we know very little; but
we believe them to be a brave people, since the Etruscans put themselves
under their protection. Remain spectators of our quarrel; we will settle
it before your eyes, that you may report at home how far above other men
the Gauls are in valor."

But when they saw their pretensions repudiated and themselves treated
with outrageous disdain, the Gauls left the siege of Clusium on the spot,
and set out for Rome, not stopping for plunder, and proclaiming
everywhere on their march, "We are bound for Rome; we make war on none
but Romans;" and when they encountered the Roman army, on the 16th of
duly, 390 B.C., at the confluence of the Allia and the Tiber, half a
day's march from Rome, they abruptly struck up their war-chant, and threw
themselves upon their enemies. It is well known how they gained the day;
how they entered Rome, and found none but a few gray-beards, who, being
unable or unwilling to leave their abode, had remained seated in the
vestibule on their chairs of ivory, with truncheons of ivory in their
hands, and decorated with the insignia of the public offices they had
filled. All the people of Rome had fled, and were wandering over the
country, or seeking a refuge amongst neighboring peoples. Only the
senate and a thousand warriors had shut themselves up in the Capitol, a
citadel which commanded the city. The Gauls kept them besieged there for
seven months. The circumstances of this celebrated siege are well known,
though they have been a little embellished by the Roman historians. Not
that they have spoken too highly of the Romans themselves, who, in the
day of their country's disaster, showed admirable courage, perseverance,
and hopefulness. Pontius Cominius, who traversed the Gallic camp, swam
the Tiber, and scaled by night the heights of the Capitol, to go and
carry news to the senate; M. Manlius, who was the first, and for some
moments the only one, to hold in check, from the citadel's walls, the
Gauls on the point of effecting an entrance; and M. Furius Camillus, who
had been banished from Rome the preceding year, and had taken refuge in
the town of Ardea, and who instantly took the field for his country,
rallied the Roman fugitives, and incessantly harassed the Gauls--are true
heroes, who have earned their weed of glory. Let no man seek to lower
them in public esteem. Noble actions are so beautiful, and the actors
often receive so little recompense, that we are at least bound to hold
sacred the honor attached to their name.

[Illustration: The Gauls in Rome----39]

The Roman historians have done no more than justice in extolling the
saviors of Rome. But their memory would have suffered no loss had the
whole truth been made known; and the claims of national vanity are not of
the same weight as the duty one owes to truth. Now, it is certain that
Camillus did not gain such decisive advantages over the Gauls as the
Roman accounts would lead one to believe, and that the deliverance of
Rome was much less complete. On the 13th of February, 389 B.C., the
Gauls, it is true, allowed their retreat to be purchased by the Romans;
and they experienced, as they retired, certain checks, whereby they lost
a part of their booty. But twenty-three years afterwards they are found
in Latium scouring in every direction the outlying country of Rome,
without the Romans daring to go out and fight them. It was only at the
end of five years, in the year 361 B.C., that, the very city being
menaced anew, the legions marched out to meet the enemy. "Surprised at
this audacity," says Polybius, "the Gauls fell back, but merely a few
leagues from Rome, to the environs of Tibur; and thence, for the space of
twelve years, they attacked the Roman territory, renewing the campaign
every year, often reaching the very gates of the city, and being repulsed
indeed, but never farther than Tibur and its slopes." Rome, however, made
great efforts, every war with the Gauls was previously proclaimed a
tumult, which involved a levy in mass of the citizens, without any
exemption, even for old men and priests. A treasure, specially dedicated
to Gallic wars, was laid by in the Capitol, and religious denunciations
of the most awful kind hung over the head of whoever should dare to touch
it, no matter what the exigency might be. To this epoch belonged those
marvels of daring recorded in Roman tradition, those acts of heroism
tinged with fable, which are met with amongst so many peoples, either in
their earliest age, or in their days of great peril. In the year 361
B.C., Titus Manlius, son of him who had saved the Capitol from the night
attack of the Gauls, and twelve years later M. Valerius, a young military
tribune, were, it will be remembered, the two Roman heroes who vanquished
in single combat the two Gallic giants who insolently defied Rome. The
gratitude towards them was general and of long duration, for two
centuries afterwards (in the year 167 B.C.) the head of the Gaul with his
tongue out still appeared at Rome, above the shop of a money-changer, on
a circular sign-board, called "the Kymrian shield" (scutum Cimbricum).
After seventeen years' stay in Latium, the Gauls at last withdrew, and
returned to their adopted country in those lovely valleys of the Po which
already bore the name of Cisalpine Gaul. They began to get disgusted
with a wandering life. Their population multiplied; their towns spread;
their fields were better cultivated; their manners became less barbarous.
For fifty years there was scarcely any trace of hostility or even contact
between them and the Romans. But at the beginning of the third century
before our era, the coalition of the Samnites and Etruscans against Rome
was near its climax; they eagerly pressed the Gauls to join, and the
latter assented easily. Then commenced the second period of struggles
between the two peoples. Rome had taken breath, and had grown much more
rapidly than her rivals. Instead of shutting herself up, as heretofore,
within her walls, she forthwith raised three armies, took the offensive
against the coalitionists, and carried the war into their territory. The
Etruscans rushed to the defence of their hearths. The two consuls,
Fabius and Decius, immediately attacked the Samnites and Gauls at the
foot of the Apennines, close to Sentinum (now Sentina). The battle was
just beginning, when a hind, pursued by a wolf from the mountains, passed
in flight between the two armies, and threw herself upon the side of the
Gauls, who slew her; the wolf turned towards the Romans, who let him go.
"Comrades," cried a soldier, "flight and death are on the side where you
see stretched on the ground the hind of Diana; the wolf belongs to Mars;
he is unwounded, and reminds us of our father and founder; we shall
conquer even as he." Nevertheless the battle went badly for the Romans;
several legions were in flight, and Decius strove vainly to rally them.
The memory of his father came across his mind. There was a belief
amongst the Romans that if in the midst of an unsuccessful engagement the
general devoted himself to the infernal gods, "panic and flight" passed
forthwith to the enemies' ranks. "Why daily?" said Decius to the grand
pontiff, whom he had ordered to follow him and keep at his side in the
flight; "'tis given to our race to die to avert public disasters." He
halted, placed a javelin beneath his feet, and covering his head with a
fold of his robe, and supporting his chin on his right hand, repeated
after the pontiff this sacred form of words:--

"Janus, Jupiter, our father Mars, Quirinus, Bellona, Lares, . . . ye
gods in whose power are we, we and our enemies, gods Manes, ye I adore;
ye I pray, ye I adjure to give strength and victory to the Roman people,
the children of Quirinus, and to send confusion, panic, and death amongst
the enemies of the Roman people, the children of Quirinus. And, in these
words for the republic of the children of Quirinus, for the army, for the
legions, and for the allies of the Roman people, I devote to the gods
Manes and to the grave the legions and the allies of the enemy and
myself."

Then remounting, Decius charged into the middle of the Gauls, where he
soon fell pierced with wounds; but the Romans recovered courage and
gained the day; for heroism and piety have power over the hearts of men,
so that at the moment of admiration they become capable of imitation.

During this second period Rome was more than once in danger. In the year
283 B.C. the Gauls destroyed one of her armies near Aretium (Arezzo),
and advanced to the Roman frontier, saying, "We are bound for Rome; the
Gauls know how to take it." Seventy-two years afterwards the Cisalpine
Gauls swore they would not put off their baldricks till they had mounted
the Capitol, and they arrived within three days' march of Rome. At every
appearance of this formidable enemy the alarm at Rome was great. The
senate raised all its forces and summoned its allies. The people
demanded a consultation of the Sibylline books, sacred volumes sold, it
was said, to Tarquinius Priscus by the sibyl Amalthea, and containing the
secret of the destinies of the Republic. They were actually opened in
the year 228 B.C., and it was with terror found that the Gauls would
twice take possession of the soil of Rome. On the advice of the priests,
there was dug within the city, in the middle of the cattle-market, a huge
pit, in which two Gauls, a man and a woman, were entombed alive; for thus
they took possession of the soil of Rome, the oracle was fulfilled, and
the mishap averted. Thirteen years afterwards, on occasion of the
disaster at Cann, the same atrocity was again committed, at the same
place and for the same cause. And by a strange contrast, there was at
the committing of this barbarous act, "which was against Roman usage,"
says Livy, a secret feeling of horror, for, to appease the manes of the
victims, a sacrifice was instituted, which was celebrated every year at
the pit, in the month of November.

In spite of sometimes urgent peril, in spite of popular alarms, Rome,
during the course of this period, from 299 to 258 B.C., maintained an
increasing ascendency over the Gauls. She always cleared them off her
territory, several times ravaged theirs, on the two banks of the Po,--
called respectively Transpadan and Cispadan Gaul, and gained the majority
of the great battles she had to fight. Finally in the year 283 B.C., the
proprietor Drusus, after having ravaged the country of the Senonic Gauls,
carried off the very ingots and jewels, it was said, which had been given
to their ancestors as the price of their retreat. Solemn proclamation
was made that the ransom of the Capitol had returned within its walls;
and, sixty years afterwards, the Consul M. Cl. Marcellus, having defeated
at Clastidium a numerous army of Gauls, and with his own hand slain their
general, Virdumar, had the honor of dedicating to the temple of Jupiter
the third "grand spoils" taken since the foundation of Rome, and of
ascending the Capitol, himself conveying the armor of Virdumar, for he
had got hewn an oaken trunk, round which he had arranged the helmet,
tunic, and breastplate of the barbarian king.

Nor was war Rome's only weapon against her enemies. Besides the ability
of her generals and the discipline of her legions, she had the sagacity
of her Senate. The Gauls were not wanting in intelligence or dexterity,
but being too free to go quietly under a master's hand, and too barbarous
for self-government, carried away, as they were, by the interest or
passion of the moment, they could not long act either in concert or with
sameness of purpose. Far-sightedness and the spirit of persistence were,
on the contrary, the familiar virtues of the Roman Senate. So soon as
they had penetrated Cisalpine Gaul, they labored to gain there a
permanent footing, either by sowing dissension amongst the Gallic
peoplets that lived there, or by founding Roman colonies. In the year
283 B.C., several Roman families arrived, with colors flying and under
the guidance of three triumvirs or commissioners, on a territory to the
north-east, on the borders of the Adriatic. The triumvirs had a round
hole dug, and there deposited some fruits and a handful of earth brought
from Roman soil; then yoking to a plough, having a copper share, a white
bull and a white heifer, they marked out by a furrow a large enclosure.
The rest followed, flinging within the line the ridges thrown up by the
plough. When the line was finished, the bull and the heifer were
sacrificed with due pomp. It was a Roman colony come to settle at Sena,
on the very site of the chief town of those Senonic Gauls who had been
conquered and driven out. Fifteen years afterwards another Roman colony
was founded at Ariminum (Rimini), on the frontier of the Bolan Gauls.
Fifty years later still two others, on the two banks of the Po, Cremona
and Placentia (Plaisance). Rome had then, in the midst of her enemies,
garrisons, magazines of arms and provisions, and means of supervision and
communication. Thence proceeded at one time troops, at another
intrigues, to carry dismay or disunion amongst the Gauls.

Towards the close of the third century before our era, the triumph of
Rome in Cisalpine Gaul seemed nigh to accomplishment, when news arrived
that the Romans' most formidable enemy, Hannibal, meditating a passage
from Africa into Italy by Spain and Gaul, was already at work, by his
emissaries, to insure for his enterprise the concurrence of the
Transalpine and Cisalpine Gauls. The Senate ordered the envoys they had
just then at Carthage to traverse Gaul on returning, and seek out allies
there against Hannibal. The envoys halted amongst the Gallo-Iberian
peoplets who lived at the foot of the eastern Pyrenees. There, in the
midst of the warriors assembled in arms, they charged them in the name of
the great and powerful Roman people, not to suffer the Carthaginians to
pass through their territory. Tumultuous laughter arose at a request
that appeared so strange. "You wish us," was the answer, "to draw down
war upon ourselves to avert it from Italy, and to give our own fields
over to devastation to save yours. We have no cause to complain of the
Carthaginians or to be pleased with the Romans, or to take up arms for
the Romans and against the Carthaginians. We, on the contrary, hear that
the Roman people drive out from their lands, in Italy, men of our nation,
impose tribute upon them, and make them undergo other indignities." So
the envoys of Rome quitted Gaul without allies.

Hannibal, on the other hand, did not meet with all the favor and all the
enthusiasm he had anticipated. Between the Pyrenees and the Alps several
peoplets united with him; and several showed coldness, or even hostility.
In his passage of the Alps the mountain tribes harassed him incessantly.
Indeed, in Cisalpine Gaul itself there was great division and hesitation;
for Rome had succeeded in inspiring her partisans with confidence and her
enemies with fear. Hannibal was often obliged to resort to force even
against the Gauls whose alliance he courted, and to ravage their lands in
order to drive them to take up arms. Nay, at the conclusion of an
alliance, and in the very camp of the Carthaginians, the Gauls sometimes
hesitated still, and sometimes rose against Hannibal, accused him of
ravaging their country, and refused to obey his orders. However, the
delights of victory and of pillage at last brought into full play the
Cisalpine Gauls' natural hatred of Rome. After Ticinus and Trebia,
Hannibal had no more zealous and devoted troops. At the battle of Lake
Trasimene he lost fifteen hundred men, nearly all Gauls; at that of
Canine he had thirty thousand of them, forming two thirds of his army;
and at the moment of action they cast away their tunics and checkered
cloaks (similar to the plaids of the Gals or Scottish Highlanders), and
fought naked from the belt upwards, according to their custom when they
meant to conquer or die. Of five thousand five hundred men that the
victory of Cannae cost Hannibal, four thousand were Gauls. All Cisalpine
Gaul was moved; enthusiasm was at its height; new bands hurried off to
recruit the army of the Carthaginian who, by dint of patience and genius,
brought Rome within an ace of destruction, with the assistance almost
entirely of the barbarians he had come to seek at her gates, and whom he
had at first found so cowed and so vacillating.

When the day of reverses came, and Rome had recovered her ascendency,
the Gauls were faithful to Hannibal; and when at length he was forced to
return to Africa, the Gallic bands, whether from despair or attachment,
followed him thither. In the year 200 B.C., at the famous battle of
Zama, which decided matters between Rome and Carthage, they again formed
a third of the Carthaginian army, and showed that they were, in the words
of Livy, "inflamed by that innate hatred towards the Romans which is
peculiar to their race."

This was the third period of the struggle between the Gauls and the
Romans in Italy. Rome, well advised by this terrible war of the danger
with which she was ever menaced by the Cisalpine Gauls, formed the
resolution of no longer restraining them, but of subduing them and
conquering their territory. She spent thirty years (from 200 to 170
B.C.) in the execution of this design, proceeding by means of war, of
founding Roman colonies, and of sowing dissension amongst the Gallic
peoplets. In vain did the two principal, the Boians and the Insubrians,
endeavor to rouse and rally all the rest: some hesitated; some absolutely
refused, and remained neutral. The resistance was obstinate. The Gauls,
driven from their fields and their towns, established themselves, as
their ancestors had done, in the forests, whence they emerged only to
fall furiously upon the Romans. And then, if the engagement were
indecisive, if any legions wavered, the Roman centurions hurled their
colors into the midst of the enemy, and the legionaries dashed on at all
risks to recover them. At Parma and Bologna, in the towns taken from the
Gauls, Roman colonies came at once and planted them-selves. Day by day
did Rome advance. At length, in the year 190 B.C., the wrecks of the one
hundred and twelve tribes which had formed the nation of the Boians,
unable any longer to resist, and unwilling to submit, rose as one man,
and departed from Italy.

The Senate, with its usual wisdom, multiplied the number of Roman
colonies in the conquered territory, treated with moderation the tribes
that submitted, and gave to Cisalpine Gaul the name of the Cisalpine or
Hither Gallic Province, which was afterwards changed for that of Gallia
Togata or Roman Gaul. Then, declaring that nature herself had placed the
Alps between Gaul and Italy as an insurmountable barrier, the Senate
pronounced "a curse on whosoever should attempt to cross it."

CHAPTER III.----THE ROMANS IN GAUL.

It was Rome herself that soon crossed that barrier of the Alps which she
had pronounced fixed by nature and insurmountable. Scarcely was she
mistress of Cisalpine Gaul when she entered upon a quarrel with the
tribes which occupied the mountain-passes. With an unsettled frontier,
and between neighbors of whom one is ambitious and the other barbarian,
pretexts and even causes are never wanting. It is likely that the Gallic
mountaineers were not careful to abstain, they and their flocks, from
descending upon the territory that had become Roman. The Romans, in
turn, penetrated into the hamlets, carried off flocks and people, and
sold them in the public markets at Cremona, at Placentia, and in all
their colonies.

The Gauls of the Alps demanded succor of the Transalpine Gauls, applying
to a powerful chieftain, named Cincibil, whose influence extended
throughout the mountains. But the terror of the Roman name had reached
across. Cincibil sent to Rome a deputation, with his brother at their
head, to set forth the grievances of the mountaineers, and especially to
complain of the consul Cassius, who had carried off and sold several
thousands of Gauls. Without making any concession, the Senate was
gracious. Cassius was away; he must be waited for. Meanwhile the Gauls
were well treated; Cincibil and his brother received as presents two
golden collars, five silver vases, two horses fully caparisoned, and
Roman dresses for all their suite. Still nothing was done.

Another, a greater and more decisive opportunity offered itself.
Marseilles was an ally of the Romans. As the rival of Carthage, and with
the Gauls forever at her gates, she had need of Rome by sea and land.
She pretended, also, to the most eminent and intimate friendship with
Rome. Her founder, the Phocean Euxenes, had gone to Rome, it was said,
and concluded a treaty with Tarquinius Priscus. She had gone into
mourning when Rome was burned by the Gauls; she had ordered a public levy
to aid towards the ransom of the Capitol. Rome did not dispute these
claims to remembrance. The friendship of Marseilles was of great use to
her. In the whole course of her struggle with Carthage, and but lately,
at the passage of Hannibal through Gaul, Rome had met with the best of
treatment there. She granted the Massilians a place amongst her senators
at the festivals of the Republic, and exemption from all duty in her
ports. Towards the middle of the second century B.C. Marseilles was at
war with certain Gallic tribes, her neighbors, whose territory she
coveted. Two of her colonies, Nice and Antibes, were threatened. She
called on Rome for help. A Roman deputation went to decide the quarrel;
but the Gauls refused to obey its summons, and treated it with insolence.
The deputation returned with an army, succeeded in beating the refractory
tribes, and gave their land to the Massilians. The same thing occurred
repeatedly with the same result. Within the space of thirty years nearly
all the tribes between the Rhone and the Var, in the country which was
afterwards Provence, were subdued and driven back amongst the mountains,
with notice not to approach within a mile of the coast in general, and a
mile and a half of the places of disembarkation. But the Romans did not
stop there. They did not mean to conquer for Marseilles alone. In the
year 123 B.C., at some leagues to the north of the Greek city, near a
little river, then called the Coenus and nowadays the Arc, the consul
C. Sextius Calvinus had noticed, during his campaign, an abundance of
thermal springs, agreeably situated amidst wood-covered hills. There he
constructed an enclosure, aqueducts, baths, houses, a town in fact, which
he called after himself, Aquae Sextice, the modern Aix, the first Roman
establishment in Transalpine Gaul. As in the case of Cisalpine Gaul,
with Roman colonies came Roman intrigue and dissensions got up and
fomented amongst the Gauls. And herein Marseilles was a powerful
seconder; for she kept up communications with all the neighboring tribes,
and fanned the spirit of faction. After his victories, the consul
C. Sextius, seated at his tribunal, was selling his prisoners by auction,
when one of them came up to him and said, "I have always liked and served
the Romans; and for that reason I have often incurred outrage and danger
at the hands of my countrymen." The consul had him set free,--him and
his family,--and even gave him leave to point out amongst the captives
any for whom he would like to procure the same kindness. At his request
nine hundred were released. The man's name was Crato, a Greek name,
which points to a connection with Marseilles or one of her colonies. The
Gauls, moreover, ran of themselves into the Roman trap. Two of their
confederations, the AEduans, of whom mention has already been made, and
the Allobrogians, who were settled between the Alps, the Isere, and the
Rhone, were at war. A third confederation, the most powerful in Gaul at
this time, the Arvernians, who were rivals of the AEduans, gave their
countenance to the Allobrogians. The AEduans, with whom the Massilians
had commercial dealings, solicited through these latter the assistance of
Rome. A treaty was easily concluded. The AEduans obtained from the
Romans the title of friends and allies; and the Romans received from the
AEduans that of brothers, which amongst the Gauls implied a sacred tie.
The consul Domitius forthwith commanded the Allobrogians to respect the
territory of the allies of Rome. The Allobrogians rose up in arms and
claimed the aid of the Arvernians. But even amongst them, in the very
heart of Gaul, Rome was much dreaded; she was not to be encountered
without hesitation. So Bituitus, King of the Arvernians, was for trying
accommodation. He was a powerful and wealthy chieftain. His father
Luern used to give amongst the mountains magnificent entertainments; he
had a space of twelve square furlongs enclosed, and dispensed wine, mead,
and beer from cisterns made within the enclosure; and all the Arvernians
crowded to his feasts. Bituitus displayed before the Romans his barbaric
splendor. A numerous escort, superbly clad, surrounded his ambassador;
in attendance were packs of enormous hounds; and in front; went a bard,
or poet, who sang, with rotte or harp in hand, the glory of Bituitus and
of the Arvernian people. Disdainfully the consul received and sent back
the embassy. War broke out; the Allobrogians, with the usual confidence
and hastiness of all barbarians, attacked alone, without waiting for the
Arvernians, and were beaten at the confluence of the Rhone and the
Sorgue, a little above Avignon. The next year, 121 B.C., the Arvernians
in their turn descended from the mountains, and crossed the Rhone with
all their tribes, diversely armed and clad, and ranged each about its own
chieftain. In his barbaric vanity, Bituitus marched to war with the same
pomp that he had in vain displayed to obtain peace. He sat upon a car
glittering with silver; he wore a plaid of striking colors; and he
brought in his train a pack of war-hounds. At the sight of the Roman
legions, few in number, iron-clad, in serried ranks that took up little
space, he contemptuously cried, "There is not a meal for my hounds."

The Arvernians were beaten, as the Allobrogians had been. The hounds of
Bituitus were of little use to him against the elephants which the Romans
had borrowed from Asiatic usage, and which spread consternation amongst
the Gauls. The Roman historians say that the Arvernian army was two
hundred thousand strong, and that one hundred and twenty thousand were
slain; but the figures are absurd, like most of those found in ancient
chronicles. We know nowadays, thanks to modern civilization, which shows
everything in broad daylight, and measures everything with proper
caution, that only the most populous and powerful nations, and that at
great expenditure of trouble and time, can succeed in moving armies of
two hundred thousand men, and that no battle, however murderous it may
be, ever costs one hundred and twenty thousand lives.

Rome treated the Arvernians with consideration; but the Allobrogians lost
their existence as a nation. The Senate declared them subject to the
Roman people; and all the country comprised between the Alps, the Rhone
from its entry into the Lake of Geneva to its mouth, and the
Mediterranean, was made a Roman consular province, which means that every
year a consul must march thither with his army. In the three following
years, indeed, the consuls extended the boundaries of the new province,
on the right bank of the Rhone, to the frontier of the Pyrenees
southward. In the year 115 B.C. a colony of Roman citizens was conducted
to Narbonne, a town even then of importance, in spite of the objections
made by certain senators who were unwilling, say the historians, so to
expose Roman citizens "to the waves of barbarism." This was the second
colony which went and established itself out of Italy; the first had been
founded on the ruins of Carthage.

Having thus completed their conquest, the Senate, to render possession
safe and sure, decreed the occupation of the passes of the Alps which
opened Gaul to Italy. There was up to that time no communication with
Gaul save along the Mediterranean, by a narrow and difficult path, which
has become in our time the beautiful route called the Corniche. The
mountain tribes defended their independence with desperation; when that
of the Stumians, who occupied the pass of the maritime Alps, saw their
inability to hold their own, they cut the throats of their wives and
children, set fire to their houses, and threw themselves into the flames.
But the Senate pursued its course imperturbably. All the chief defiles
of the Alps fell into its hands. The old Phoenician road, restored by
the consul Domitius, bore thenceforth his name (Via Donaitia), and less
than sixty years after Cisalpine Gaul had been reduced to a Roman
province, Rome possessed, in Transalpine Gaul, a second province, whither
she sent her armies, and where she established her citizens without
obstruction. But Providence seldom allows men, even in the midst of
their successes, to forget for long how precarious they are; and when He
is pleased to remind them, it is not by words, as the Persians reminded
their king, but by fearful events that He gives His warnings. At the
very moment when Rome believed herself set free from Gallic invasions,
and on the point of avenging herself by a course of conquest, a new
invasion, more extensive and more barbarous, came bursting upon Rome and
upon Gaul at the same time, and plunged them together in the same
troubles and the same perils.

In the year 113 B.C. there appeared to the north of the Adriatic, on the
right bank of the Danube, an immense multitude of barbarians, ravaging
Noricum and threatening Italy. Two nations predominated; the Kymrians or
Cimbrians, and the Teutons, the national name of the Germans. They came
from afar, northward, from the Cimbrian peninsula, nowadays Jutland, and
from the countries bordering on the Baltic which nowadays form the
duchies of Holstein and Schleswig. A violent shock of earthquake, a
terrible inundation, had driven them, they said, from their homes; and
those countries do indeed show traces of such events. And Cimbrians and
Teutons had been for some time roaming over Germany.

The consul Papirius Carbo, despatched in all haste to defend the
frontier, bade them, in the name of the Roman people, to withdraw. The
barbarians modestly replied that they had no intention of settling in
Noricum, and if the Romans had rights over the country, they would carry
their arms elsewhere. The consul, who had found haughtiness succeed,
thought he might also employ perfidy against the barbarians. He offered
guides to conduct them out of Noricum; and the guides misled them. The
consul attacked them unexpectedly during the night, and was beaten.

However, the barbarians, still fearful, did not venture into Italy.
They roamed for three years along the Danube, as far as the mountains of
Macedonia and Thrace. Then retracing their steps, and marching eastward,
they inundated the valleys of the Helvetic Alps, now Switzerland, having
their numbers swelled by other tribes, Gallic or German, who preferred
joining in pillage to undergoing it. The Ambrons, among others, a Gallic
peoplet that had taken refuge in Helvetia after the expulsion of the
Umbrians by the Etruscans from Italy, joined the Cimbrians and Teutons;
and in the year 110 B.C. all together entered Gaul, at first by way of
Belgica, and then, continuing their wanderings and ravages in central
Gaul, they at last reached the Rhone, on the frontiers of the Roman
province.

There the name of Rome again arrested their progress; they applied to her
anew for lands, with the offer of their services. "Rome," answered
M. Silanus, who commanded in the province, "has neither lands to give you
nor services to accept from you." He attacked them in their camp, and
was beaten.

Three consuls, L. Cassius, C. Servilius Omepio, and Cu. Manlius,
successively experienced the same fate. With the barbarians victory bred
presumption. Their chieftains met and deliberated whether they should
not forthwith cross into Italy, to exterminate or enslave the Romans,
and make Kymrian spoken at Rome. Scaurus, a prisoner, was in the tent,
loaded with fetters, during the deliberation. He was questioned about
the resources of his country. "Cross not the Alps," said he; "go not
into Italy: the Romans are invincible." In a transport of fury the
chieftain of the Kymrians, Boiorix by name, fell upon the Roman, and ran
him through. Howbeit the advice of Scaurus was followed. The barbarians
did not as yet dare to decide upon invading Italy; but they freely
scoured the Roman province, meeting here with repulse, and there with
re-enforcement from the peoplets who formed the inhabitants. The
Tectosagian Voles, Hymrian in origin and maltreated by Rome, joined them.
Then, on a sudden, whilst the Teutons and Ambrons remained in Gaul, the
Kymrians passed over to Spain without apparent motive, and probably as an
overswollen torrent divides, and disperses its waters in all directions.
The commotion at Rome was extreme; never had so many or such wild
barbarians threatened the Republic; never had so many or such large Roman
armies been beaten in succession. There was but one man, it was said,
who could avert the danger, and give Rome the ascendency. It was Marius,
low-born, but already illustrious; esteemed by the Senate for his genius
as a commander and for his victories; swaying at his will the people, who
saw in him one of themselves, and admired without envying him; beloved
and feared by the army for his bravery, his rigorous discipline, and his
readiness to share their toils and dangers; stern and rugged; without
education, eloquence, or riches; ill-suited for shining in public
assemblies, but resolute and dexterous in action; verily made to dominate
the vigorous but unrefined multitude, whether in camp or city, partly by
participating their feelings, partly by giving them in his own person a
specimen of the deserts and sometimes of the virtues which they esteem
but do not possess.

He was consul in Africa, where he was putting an end to the war with
Jugurtha. He was elected a second time consul, without interval and in
his absence, contrary to all the laws of the Republic. Scarcely had he
returned, when, on descending from the Capitol, where he had just
received a triumph for having conquered and captured Jugurtha, he set out
for Gaul. On his arrival, instead of proceeding, as his predecessors,
to attack the barbarians at once, he confined himself to organizing and
inuring his troops, subjecting them to frequent marches, all kinds of
military exercises, and long and hard labor. To insure supplies he made
them dig, towards the mouths of the Rhone, a large canal which formed a
junction with the river a little above Arles, and which, at its entrance
into the sea, offered good harborage for vessels. This canal, which
existed for a long while under the name of Rossae Mariance (the dikes of
Marius), is filled up nowadays; but at its southern extremity the village
of Foz still preserves a remembrance of it. Trained in this severe
school, the soldiers acquired such a reputation for sobriety and
laborious assiduity, that they were proverbially called Marius's mules.

He was as careful for their moral state as for their physical fitness,
and labored to exalt their imaginations as well as to harden their
bodies. In that camp, and amidst those toils in which he kept them
strictly engaged, frequent sacrifices, and scrupulous care in consulting
the oracles, kept superstition at a white heat. A Syrian prophetess,
named Martha, who had been sent to Marius by his wife Julia, the aunt of
Julius Caesar, was ever with him, and accompanied him at the sacred
ceremonies and on the march, being treated with the greatest respect, and
having vast influence over the minds of the soldiers.

Two years rolled on in this fashion; and yet Marius would not move. The
increasing devastation of the country, fire, and famine, the despair and
complaints of the inhabitants, did not shake his resolution. Nor was the
confidence he inspired both in the camp and at Rome a whit shaken: he was
twice re-elected consul, once while he was still absent, and once during
a visit he paid to Rome to give directions to his party in person.

It was at Rome, in the year 102 B.C., that he learned how the Kymrians,
weary of Spain, had recrossed the Pyrenees, rejoined their old comrades,
and had at last resolved, in concert, to invade Italy; the Kymrians from
the north, by way of Helvetia and Noricum, the Teutons and Ambrons from
the south, by way of the maritime Alps. They were to form a junction on
the banks of the Po, and thence march together on Rome. At this news
Marius returned forthwith to Gaul, and, without troubling himself about
the Kymrians, who had really put themselves in motion towards the
north-east, he placed his camp so as to cover at one and the same time
the two Roman roads which crossed at Arles, and by one of which the
Ambro-Teutons must necessarily pass to enter Italy on the south.

They soon appeared "in immense numbers," say the historians, "with their
hideous looks and their wild cries," drawing up their chariots and
planting their tents in front of the Roman camp. They showered upon
Marius and his soldiers continual insult and defiance. The Romans, in
their irritation, would fain have rushed out of their camp, but Marius
restrained them. "It is no question," said he, with his simple and
convincing common sense, "of gaining triumphs and trophies; it is a
question of averting this storm of war and of saving Italy." A Teutonic
chieftain came one day up to the very gates of the camp, and challenged
him to fight. Marius had him informed that if he were tired of life he
could go and hang himself. As the barbarian still persisted, Marius sent
him a gladiator.

However, he made his soldiers, in regular succession, mount the ramparts,
to get them familiarized with the cries, looks, arms, and movements of
the barbarians. The most distinguished of his officers, young Sertorius,
who understood and spoke Gallic well, penetrated, in the disguise of a
Gaul, into the camp of the Ambrons, and informed Marius of what was going
on there.

At last the barbarians, in their impatience, having vainly attempted to
storm the Roman camp, struck their own, and put themselves in motion
towards the Alps. For six whole days, it is said, their bands were
defiling beneath the ramparts of the Romans, and crying, "Have you any
message for your wives? We shall soon be with them."

Marius, too, struck his camp, and followed them. They halted, both of
them, near Aix, on the borders of the Coenus, the barbarians in the
valley, Marius on a hill which commanded it. The ardor of the Romans was
at its height; it was warm weather; there was a want of water on the
hill, and the soldiers murmured. "You are men," said Marius, pointing to
the river below, "and there is water to be bought with blood." "Why
don't you lead us against them at once, then," said a soldier, "whilst we
still have blood in our veins?" "We must first fortify our camp,"
answered Marius quietly.

The soldiers obeyed: but the hour of battle had come, and well did Marius
know it. It commenced on the brink of the Coenus, between some Ambrons
who were bathing and some Roman slaves gone down to draw water. When the
whole horde of the Ambrons advanced to the battle, shouting their war-cry
of Ambra! Ambra! a body of Gallic auxiliaries in the Roman army, and in
the first rank, heard them with great amazement; for it was their own
name and their own cry; there were tribes of Ambrons in the Alps
subjected to Rome as well as in the Helvetic Alps; and Ambra! Ambra!
resounded on both sides.

The battle lasted two days, the first against the Ambrons, the second
against the Teutons. Both were beaten, in spite of their savage bravery,
and the equal bravery of their women, who defended, with indomitable
obstinacy, the cars with which they had remained almost alone, in charge
of the children and the booty. After the women, it was necessary to
exterminate the hounds who defended their masters' bodies. Here again
the figures of the historians are absurd, although they differ; the most
extravagant raise the number of barbarians slain to two hundred thousand,
and that of the prisoners to eighty thousand; the most moderate stop at
one hundred thousand. In any case, the carnage was great, for the
battle-field, where all these corpses rested without burial, rotting in
the sun and rain, got the name of Campi Putridi, or Fields of
Putrefaction, a name traceable even nowadays in that of Pourrires, a
neighboring village.

[Illustration: The Women defending the Cars----58]

As to the booty, the Roman army with one voice made a free gift of it to
Marius; but he, remembering, perhaps, what had been lately done by the
barbarians after the defeat of the consuls Manlius and Czepio, determined
to have it all burned in honor of the gods. He had a great sacrifice
prepared. The soldiers, crowned with laurel, were ranged about the pyre;
their general, holding on high a blazing torch, was about to apply the
light with his own hand, when suddenly, on the very spot, whether by
design or accident, came from Rome the news that Marius had just been for
the fifth time elected consul. In the midst of acclamations from his
army, and with a fresh chaplet bound upon his brow, he applied the torch
in person, and completed the sacrifice.

Were we travelling in Provence, in the neighborhood of Aix, we should
encounter, peradventure, some peasant who, whilst pointing out to us the
summit of a lull whereon, in all probability, Marius offered, nineteen
hundred and forty years ago, that glorious sacrifice, would say to us in
his native dialect, "Aqui es lou deloubre do la Vittoria:" "There is the
temple of victory." There, indeed, was built, not far from a pyramid
erected in honor of Marius, a little temple dedicated to Victory.
Thither, every year, in the month of May, the population used to come and
celebrate a festival and light a bonfire, answered by other bonfires on
the neighboring heights. When Gaul became Christian, neither monument
nor festival perished; a saint took the place of the goddess, and the
temple of Victory became the church of St. Victoire. There are still
ruins of it to this day; the religious procession which succeeded the
pagan festival ceased only at the first outburst of the Revolution; and
the vague memory of a great national event still mingles in popular
tradition with the legends of the saint.

The Ambrons and Teutons beaten, there remained the Kymrians, who,
according to agreement, had repassed the Helvetic Alps and entered Italy
on the north-east, by way of the Adige. Marius marched against them in
July of the following year, 101 B.C. Ignorant of what had occurred in
Gaul, and possessed, as ever, with the desire of a settlement, they again
sent to him a deputation, saying, "Give us lands and towns for us and our
brethren." "What brethren?" asked Marius. "The Teutons." The Romans
who were about Marius began to laugh. "Let your brethren be," said
Marius; "they have land, and will always have it; they received it from
us." The Kymrians, perceiving the irony of his tone, burst out into
threats, telling Marius that he should suffer for it at their hands
first, and afterwards at those of the Teutons when they arrived. "They
are here," rejoined Marius; "you must not depart without saluting your
brethren;" and he had Teutobod, King of the Teutons, brought out with
other captive chieftains. The envoys reported the sad news in their own
camp, and three days afterwards, July 30, a great battle took place
between the Kymrians and the Romans in the Raudine Plains, a large tract
near Verceil.

It were unnecessary to dwell on the details of the battle, which
resembled that of Aix; besides, fought as it was in Italy and by none but
Romans, it has but little to do with a history of Gaul. It has been
mentioned only to make known the issue of that famous invasion, of which
Gaul was the principal theatre. For a moment it threatened the very
existence of the Roman Republic. The victories of Marius arrested the
torrent, but did not dry up its source. The great movement which drove
from Asia to Europe, and from eastern to western Europe, masses of roving
populations, followed its course, bringing incessantly upon the Roman
frontiers new comers and new perils. A greater man than Marius, Julius
Caesar in fact, saw that to effectually resist these clouds of barbaric
assailants, the country into which they poured must be conquered and made
Roman. The conquest of Gaul was the accomplishment of that idea, and the
decisive step towards the transformation of the Roman republic into a
Roman empire.

CHAPTER IV.----GAUL CONQUERED BY JULIUS CAESAR.

Historians, ancient and modern, have attributed to the Roman Senate,
from the time of the establishment of the Roman province in Gaul, a
long-premeditated design of conquering Gaul altogether. Others have said
that when Julius Caesar, in the year of Rome 696, (58 B C.) got himself
appointed proconsul in Gaul, his single aim was to form for himself there
an army devoted to his person, of which he might avail himself to satisfy
his ambition and make himself master of Rome. We should not be too ready
to believe in these far-reaching and precise plans, conceived and settled
so long beforehand, whether by a senate or a single man. Prevision and
exact calculation do not count for so much in the lives of governments
and of peoples. It is unexpected events, inevitable situations, the
imperious necessities of successive epochs, which most often decide the
conduct of the greatest powers and the most able politicians. It is
after the fair, when the course of facts and their consequences has
received full development, that, amidst their tranquil meditations,
annalists and historians, in their learned way, attribute everything to
systematic plans and personal calculations on the part of the chief
actors. There is much less of combination than of momentary inspiration,
derived from circumstances, in the resolutions and conduct of political
chiefs, kings, senators, or great men. From the time that discord and
corruption had turned the Roman Republic into a bloody and tyrannical
anarchy, the Roman Senate no longer meditated grand designs, and its
members were preoccupied only with the question of escaping or avenging
proscriptions. When Caesar procured for himself the government for five
years of the Gauls, the fact was, that, not desiring to be a sanguinary
dictator like Scylla, or a gala chieftain like Pompey, he went and sought
abroad, for his own glory and fortune's sake, in a war of general Roman
interest, the means and chances of success which were not furnished to
him in Rome itself by the dogged and monotonous struggle of the factions.

[Illustration: The Roman Army invading Gaul----61]

In spite of the victories of Marius, and the destruction or dispersion of
the Teutons and Cimbrians, the whole of Gaul remained seriously disturbed
and threatened. At the north-east, in Belgica, some bands of other
Teutons, who had begun to be called Germans (men of war), had passed over
the left bank of the Rhine, and were settling or wandering there without
definite purpose. In eastern and central Gaul, in the valleys of the
Jura and Auvergne, on the banks of the Saone, the Allier, and the Doubs,
the two great Gallic confederations, that of the AEduans and that of the
Arvernians, were disputing the preponderance, and making war one upon
another, seeking the aid, respectively, of the Romans and of the Germans.
At the foot of the Alps, the little nation of Allobrogians, having fallen
a prey to civil dissension, had given up its independence to Rome. Even
in southern and western Gaul the populations of Agnitania were rising,
vexing the Roman province, and rendering necessary, on both sides of the
Pyrenees, the intervention of Roman legions. Everywhere floods of
barbaric populations were pressing upon Gaul, were carrying disgnietude
even where they had not themselves yet penetrated, and causing
presentiments of a general commotion. The danger burst before long upon
particular places and in connection with particular names which have
remained historical. In the war with the confederation of the AEduans,
that of the Arvernians called to their aid the German Ariovistus,
chieftain of a confederation of tribes which, under the name of Suevians,
were roving over the right bank of the Rhine, ready at any time to cross
the river. Ariovistus, with fifteen thousand warriors at his back, was
not slow in responding to the appeal. The AEdaans were beaten; and
Ariovistus settled amongst the Gauls who had been thoughtless enough to
appeal to him. Numerous bands of Suevians came and rejoined him; and in
two or three years after his victory he had about him, it was said, one
hundred and twenty thousand warriors. He had appropriated to them a
third of the territory of his Gallic allies, and he imperiously demanded
another third to satisfy other twenty-five thousand of his old German
comrades, who asked to share his booty and his new country. One of the
foremost AEduans, Divitiacus by name, went and invoked the succor of the
Roman people, the patrons of his confederation. He was admitted to the
presence of the Senate, and invited to be seated; but he modestly
declined, and standing, leaning upon his shield, he set forth the
sufferings and the claims of his country. He received kindly promises,
which at first remained without fruit. He, however, remained at Rome,
persistent in his solicitations, and carrying on intercourse with several
Romans of consideration, notably with Cicero, who says of him, "I knew
Divitiacus, the AEduan, who claimed proficiency in that natural science
which the Greeks call physiology, and he predicted the future, either by
augury or his own conjecture." The Roman Senate, with the indecision and
indolence of all declining powers, hesitated to engage, for the AEduans'
sake, in a war against the invaders of a corner of Gallic territory. At
the same time that they gave a cordial welcome to Divitiacus, they
entered into negotiations with Ariovistus himself; they gave him
beautiful presents, the title of King, and even of friend; the only
demand they made was, that he should live peaceably in his new
settlement, and not lend his support to the fresh invasions of which
there were symptoms in Gaul, and which were becoming too serious for
resolutions not to be taken to repel them.

[Illustration: Divitiacus before the Roman Senate----63]

A people of Gallic race, the Helvetians, who inhabited present
Switzerland, where the old name still abides beside the modern, found
themselves incessantly threatened, ravaged, and invaded by the German
tribes which pressed upon their frontiers. After some years of
perplexity and internal discord, the whole Helvetic nation decided upon
abandoning its territory, and going to seek in Gaul, westward, it is
said, on the borders of the ocean, a more tranquil settlement. Being
informed of this design, the Roman Senate and Caesar, at that time
consul, resolved to protect the Roman province and their Gallic allies,
the AEduans, against this inundation of roving neighbors. The Helvetians
none the less persisted in their plan; and in the spring of the year of
Rome 696 (58 B C.) they committed to the flames, in the country they were
about to leave, twelve towns, four hundred villages, and all their
houses; loaded their cars with provisions for three months, and agreed to
meet at the southern point of the Lake of Geneva. They found on their
reunion, says Caesar, a total of three hundred and sixty-eight thousand
emigrants, including ninety-two thousand men-at-arms. The Switzerland
which they abandoned numbers now two million five hundred thousand
inhabitants. But when the Helvetians would have entered Gaul, they found
there Caesar, who, after having got himself appointed proconsul for five
years, had arrived suddenly at Geneva, prepared to forbid their passage.
They sent to him a deputation, to ask leave, they said, merely to
traverse the Roman province without causing the least damage. Caesar
knew as well how to gain time as not to lose any: he was not ready; so he
put off the Helvetians to a second conference. In the interval he
employed his legionaries, who could work as well as fight, in erecting
upon the left bank of the Rhone a wall sixteen feet high and ten miles
long, which rendered the passage of the river very difficult, and, on the
return of the Helvetian envoys, he formally forbade them to pass by the
road they had proposed to follow. They attempted to take another, and to
cross not the Rhone but the Saone, and march thence towards western Gaul.
But whilst they were arranging for the execution of this movement,
Caesar, who had up to that time only four legions at his disposal,
returned to Italy, brought away five fresh legions, and arrived on the
left bank of the Saone at the moment when the rear-guard of the
Helvetians was embarking to rejoin the main body which had already
pitched its camp on the right bank. Caesar cut to pieces this rear-guard,
crossed the river, in his turn, with his legions, pursued the emigrants
without relaxation, came in contact with them on several occasions, at
one time attacking them or repelling their attacks, at another receiving
and giving audience to their envoys without ever consenting to treat with
them, and before the end of the year he had so completely beaten,
decimated, dispersed and driven them back, that of three hundred and
sixty-eight thousand Helvetians who had entered Gaul, but one hundred and
ten thousand escaped from the Romans, and were enabled, by flight, to
regain their country.

[Illustration: Mounted Gauls----66]

AEduans, Sequanians, or Arvernians, all the Gauls interested in the
struggle thus terminated, were eager to congratulate Caesar upon his
victory; but if they were delivered from the invasion of the Helvetians,
another scourge fell heavily upon them; Ariovistus and the Germans, who
were settled upon their territory, oppressed them cruelly, and day by day
fresh bands were continually coming to aggravate the evil and the danger.
They adjured Caesar to protect them from these swarms of barbarians. "In
a few years," said they, "all the Germans will have crossed the Rhine,
and all the Gauls will be driven from Gaul, for the soil of Germany
cannot compare with that of Gaul, any more than the mode of life. If
Caesar and the Roman people refuse to aid us, there is nothing left for
us but to abandon our lands, as the Helvetians would have done in their
case, and go seek, afar from the Germans, another dwelling-place."
Caesar, touched by so prompt an appeal to the power of his name and fame
gave ear to the prayer of the Gauls. But he was for trying negotiation
before war. He proposed to Ariovistus an interview "at which they aright
treat in common of affairs of importance for both." Ariovistus replied
that "if he wanted anything of Caesar, he would go in search of him; if
Caesar had business with him, it was for Caesar to come." Caesar
thereupon conveyed to him by messenger his express injunctions, "not to
summon any more from the borders of the Rhine fresh multitudes of men,
and to cease from vexing the AEduans and making war on them, them and
their allies. Otherwise, Caesar would not fail to avenge their wrongs."
Ariovistus replied that "he had conquered the AEduans. The Roman people
were in the habit of treating the vanquished after their own pleasure,
and not the advice of another; he too, himself, had the same right.
Caesar said he would avenge the wrongs of the AEduans; but no one had
ever attacked him with impunity. If Caesar would like to try it, let him
come; he would learn what could be done by the bravery of the Germans,
who were as yet unbeaten, who were trained to arms, who for fourteen
years had not slept beneath a roof." At the moment he received this
answer, Caesar had just heard that fresh bands of Suevians were encamped
on the right bank of the Rhine, ready to cross, and that Ariovistus with
all his forces was making towards Vesontio (Besancon), the chief town of
the Sequanians. Caesar forthwith put himself in motion, occupied
Vesontio, established there a strong garrison, and made his arrangements
for issuing from it with his legions to go and anticipate the attack of
Ariovistus. Then came to him word that no little disquietude was showing
itself among the Roman troops; that many soldiers and even officers
appeared anxious about the struggle with the Germans, their ferocity, the
vast forests that must be traversed to reach them, the difficult roads,
and the transport of provisions; there was an apprehension of broken
courage, and perchance of numerous desertions. Caesar summoned a great
council of war, to which he called the chief officers of his legions; he
complained bitterly of their alarm, recalled to their memory their recent
success against the Helvetians, and scoffed at the rumors spread about
the Germans, and at the doubts with which there was an attempt to inspire
him about the fidelity and obedience of his troops. "An army," said he,
"disobeys only the commander who leads them badly and has no good
fortune, or is found guilty of cupidity and malversation. My whole life
shows my integrity, and the war against the Helvetians my good fortune.
I shall order forthwith the departure I had intended to put off. I shall
strike the camp the very next night, at the fourth watch; I wish to see
as soon as possible whether honor and duty or fear prevail in your ranks.
If there be any refusal to follow me, I shall march with only the tenth
legion, of which I have no doubt; that shall be my praetorian cohort."

The cheers of the troops, officers and men, were the answer given to the
reproaches and hopes of their general: all hesitation passed away; and
Caesar set out with his army. He fetched a considerable compass, to
spare them the passage of thick forests, and, after a seven days' march,
arrived at a short distance from the camp of Ariovistus. On learning
that Caesar was already so near, the German sent to him a messenger with
proposals for the interview which was but lately demanded, and to which
there was no longer any obstacle, since Caesar had himself arrived upon
the spot. And the interview really took place, with mutual precautions
for safety and warlike dignity. Caesar repeated all the demands he had
made upon Ariovistus, who, in his turn, maintained his refusal, asking,
"What was wanted? Why had foot been set upon his lands? That part of
Gaul was his province, just as the other was the Roman province. If
Caesar did not retire, and withdraw his troops, he should consider him no
more a friend, but an enemy. He knew that if he were to slay Caesar, he
would recommend himself to many nobles and chiefs amongst the Roman
people; he had learned as much from their own envoys. But if Caesar
retired and left him, Ariovistus, in free possession of Gaul, he would
pay liberally in return, and would wage on Caesar's behalf, without
trouble or danger to him, any wars he might desire." During this
interview it is probable that Caesar smiled more than once at the
boldness and shrewdness of the barbarian. Ultimately some horsemen in
the escort of Ariovistus began to caracole towards the Romans, and to
hurl at them stones and darts. Caesar ordered his men to make no
reprisals, and broke off the conference. The next day but one Ariovistus
proposed a renewal; but Caesar refused, having decided to bring the
quarrel to an issue. Several days in succession he led out his legions
from their camp, and offered battle; but Ariovistus remained within his
lines. Caesar then took the resolution of assailing the German camp. At
his approach, the Germans at length moved out from their intrenchments,
arrayed by peoplets, and defiling in front of cars filled with their
women, who implored them with tears not to deliver them in slavery to the
Romans. The struggle was obstinate, and not without moments of anxiety
and partial check for the Romans; but the genius of Caesar and strict
discipline of the legions carried the day. The rout of the Germans was
complete; they fled towards the Rhine, which was only a few leagues from
the field of battle. Ariovistus himself was amongst the fugitives; he
found a boat by the river side, and recrossed into Germany, where he died
shortly afterwards, "to the great grief of the Germans," says Caesar.
The Suevian bands, who were awaiting on the right bank the result of the
struggle, plunged back again within their own territory. And so the
invasion of the Germans was stopped as the emigration of the Helvetians
had been; and Caesar had only to conquer Gaul.

It is uncertain whether he had from the very first determined the whole
plan; but so soon as he set seriously to work, he felt all the
difficulties. The expulsion of the Helvetian emigrants and of the German
invaders left the Romans and Gauls alone face to face; and from that
moment the Romans were, in the eyes of the Gauls, foreigners, conquerors,
oppressors. Their deeds aggravated day by day the feelings excited by

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