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Dio's Rome by Cassius Dio

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HERBERT BALDWIN FOSTER, A.B. (Harvard), Ph.D. (Johns Hopkins), Acting
Professor of Greek in Lehigh University

SECOND VOLUME _Extant Books 36-44 (B.C. 69-44)_.




Book Thirty-six

Book Thirty-seven

Book Thirty-eight

Book Thirty-nine

Book Forty

Book Forty-one

Book Forty-two

Book Forty-three

Book Forty-four



Metellus subdues Crete by force (chapters 1, 2)[1]

Mithridates and Tigranes renew the war (chapter 3).

Lucullus does not take advantage of his victory: a successor is
appointed: he captures Tigranocerta (chapter 4).

Arsaces, the Parthian, lends aid to neither party (chapter 5).

Lucullus, after a rather disastrous conflict, besieges and captures
Nisibis (chapters 6-8).

Meanwhile he loses the Armenias: Fabius is conquered (chapters 10, 11).

Triarius follows Mithridates to Comana: is afterwards overcome by him
(chapters 12-15).

Uprising in Lucullus's army: Mithridates regains everything (chapters

Insolence of the pirates (chapters 20-23).

The consequent war, in spite of opposition on the part of many, is by
the Gabinian law entrusted to Pompey and is very quickly brought to an
end (chapters 23-37).

Cornelian laws in regard to canvassing for office and edicts of praetors:
the Roscian in regard to seats for the knights: the Manilian in regard
to the voting of freedmen (chapters 38-42).

The Mithridatic war by the Manilian law is given in charge of Pompey
(chapters 43, 44).

Pompey vanquishes Mithridates in a night battle (chapters 45-50).

Tigranes, the father, surrenders himself: his son is put in chains
(chapters 51-53).

An attack of the Albani is repulsed (chapter 54).


Q. Hortensius, Q. Caecilius Metellus Creticus Coss. (B.C. 69 = a.u. 685.)

L. Caecilius Metellus (dies,[2] then) Q. Marcius Rex alone.(B.C. 68 =
a.u. 686.)

M. Acilius Glabrio, C. Calpurnius Piso. (B.C. 67 = a.u. 687.)

L. Volcatius Tullus, M. Aemilius Lepidus. (B.C. 66 = a.u. 688.)


The beginning of this book is missing in the MSS. The gist of the lost
portion may in all probability be gathered from the following sentences
of Xiphilinus (p. 3, R. Steph.):

"When the consuls drew lots, Hortensius obtained the war against the
Cretans. Because of his fondness, however, for residence in the capital,
and because of the courts (in which his influence was only second to
Cicero's) he voluntarily relinquished the campaign in favor of his
colleague and himself remained at home. Metellus accordingly started for
Crete ...

"Lucius Lucullus at about this period worsted the lords of
Asia,--Mithridates and Tigranes the Armenian,--in the war, and having
compelled them, to avoid a pitched battle proceeded to besiege
Tigranocerta. The barbarians did him serious injury by means of their
archery as well as by the naphtha which they poured over his engines.
This chemical is full of bitumen and is so fiery that whatever it
touches it is sure to burn to a cinder, and it can not be extinguished
by any liquid. As a consequence Tigranes recovered courage and marched
forth with an army of such huge proportions that he actually laughed
heartily at the appearance of the Romans present there. He is said to
have remarked that in cases where they came to make war only a few
presented themselves, but when it was an embassy, many came. However,
his amusement was of short duration, and he forthwith discovered how far
courage and skill surpass any mere numbers. Relics of his subsequent
flight were found by the soldiers in the shape of his tiara and the band
that goes around it; and they gave them to Lucullus. In his fear that
these marks might lead to his recognition and capture he had pulled them
off and thrown them away."

[B.C. 69 (_a.u._ 685)]

[-1-] ... and because he had enjoyed the extremes of fortune in both
respects, he allowed it. For after his many defeats and victories no
fewer, he had a firm belief that he had in consequence become more
versed in generalship. His foes accordingly busied themselves as if they
were then for the first time beginning war, sending an embassy to their
various neighbors, including among others Arsaces the Parthian, although
he was hostile to Tigranes on account of some disputed territory. This
they offered to vacate for him, and proceeded to malign the Romans,
saying that the latter, should they conquer them while isolated, would
immediately make a campaign against him. Every victorious force was
inherently insatiable of success and put no bound to acquisition, and
the Romans, who had won the mastery over many, would not choose to leave
him alone.

[-2-] While they were so engaged, Lucullus did not follow up Tigranes,
but allowed him to reach safety quite at leisure. Because of this he was
charged by the citizens, as well as others, with refusing to end the
war, in order that he might retain his command a longer time. Therefore
they then restored the province of Asia to the praetors, and later, when
he apparently acted in this way again, sent to him the consul of that
year, to relieve him. Tigranocerta he did seize when the foreigners that
dwelt with the natives revolted to the side of the Armenians. The most
of these were Cilicians who had once been deported, and they let in the
Romans during the night. Thereupon everything was laid waste except what
belonged to the Cilicians; and many wives of the principal chiefs
Lucullus held, when captured, free from outrage: by this action he won
over their husbands also. He received further Antiochus, king of
Commagene (the Syrian country near the Euphrates and the Taurus), and
Alchaudonius, an Arabian chieftain, and others who had made proposals
for peace.

[-3-] From them he learned of the embassy sent by Tigranes and
Mithridates to Arsaces, and despatched to him, on his part, some of the
allies with threats, in case he should aid the foe, and promises, if he
should espouse the Roman cause. Arsaces at that time (for he still
nourished anger against Tigranes and felt no suspicion toward the
Romans) sent a counter-embassy to Lucullus, and established friendship
and alliance. Later, at sight of Secilius,[3] who had come to him, he
began to suspect that the emissary was there to spy out the country and
his power. It was for this cause, he thought, and not for the sake of
the agreement which had already been made that a man distinguished in
warfare had been sent. Hence he no longer rendered them any help. On the
other hand, he made no opposition, but stood aloof from both parties,
naturally wishing neither to grow strong. He decided that an evenly
balanced contest between them would bring him the greatest safety.

[B.C. 68 (_a.u._ 686)]

[-4-] Besides these transactions Lucullus this year subdued many parts
of Armenia. In the year of Quintus Marcius (Note by the author.--By this
I mean that although he was not the only consul appointed, he was the
only one that held office. Lucius Metellus, elected with him, died in
the early part of the year, and the man chosen in his stead resigned
before entering upon office, wherefore no one else was appointed.),--in
this year, then, when summer was half way through (in the spring it was
impossible to invade hostile territory by reason of the cold), Lucullus
entered upon a campaign and devastated some land purposing to draw the
barbarians, while defending it, imperceptibly into battle. As he could
not rouse them for all that, he attacked. [-5-]In this engagement the
opposing cavalry gave the Roman cavalry hard work, but none of the foe
approached the infantry; indeed, whenever the foot-soldiers of Lucullus
assisted the horse, the adversaries of the Romans would turn to flight.
Far from suffering harm, however, they shot backward at those pursuing
them, killing some instantly and wounding great numbers. Such wounds
were dangerous and hard to heal. This was because they used double
arrow-points and furthermore poisoned them, so that the missiles,
whether they stuck fast anywhere in the body or were drawn out, would
quickly destroy it, since the second iron point, having no attachment,
would be left within.

[-6-] Lucullus, since many were being wounded, some were dying, and some
were being maimed, and provisions at the same time were failing them,
retired from that place and marched against Nisibis. This city is built
in the region called Mesopotamia (Author's note.--Mesopotamia is the
name given to all the country between the Tigris and Euphrates.) and now
belongs to us, being considered a colony of ours. But at that time
Tigranes, who had seized it from the Parthians, had deposited in it his
treasuries and most of his other possessions, and had stationed his
brother as guard over it. Lucullus reached this city in summer time, and
although he directed his attacks upon it in no half-hearted fashion, he
effected nothing. For the walls being of brick, double and of great
thickness, with a deep moat intervening, could be neither shaken down
nor dug through and consequently Tigranes was not lending them
assistance.[-7-] When winter set in, and the barbarians were behaving
rather carelessly, inasmuch as they had the upper hand and were all but
expecting to drive out the Romans, Lucullus waited for a night without a
moon, when there was a violent storm of thunder and rain, so that the
foe, not being able to see ahead or hear a sound, left the outer city
(all but a few of them) and the intervening moat. He then assailed the
wall at many points, ascending it without difficulty from the mounds,
and easily slew the guards, not many in number, who had been left behind
upon it. In this way he filled up a part of the moat--the barbarians had
broken down the bridges in advance--and got across, since in the
downpour neither archery nor fire could harm him. Immediately he
captured nearly everything, for the inner circle was not very strong by
reason of the confidence felt in the outer works beyond it. Among those
that fled to the acropolis, whom he subsequently caused to capitulate,
was the brother of Tigranes. He also obtained considerable money and
passed the winter there.

[-8-] Nisibis, then, he overpowered as described, but many localities of
Armenia and the other countries around Pontus he lost. Tigranes had not
aided the town in question through the idea that it could not be
captured, but had hurried to the aforementioned places to see if he
could acquire them before Lucullus, while the latter was occupied near
the other city. Despatching Mithridates to his native land, Tigranes
himself entered his own district of Armenia. There he was opposed by
Lucius Fannius, whom he cut off and besieged, however, until Lucullus
ascertaining it sent assistance. [-9-]Meanwhile Mithridates had invaded
the other Armenia and surrounding neighborhood, where he fell upon and
destroyed many of the Romans to whom he appeared unexpectedly as they
were wandering about the country. Others he annihilated in battle, and
thereby won back speedily most of the positions. For the men of that
land were well disposed toward him because of kinship and because of his
being hereditary monarch: they hated the Romans because the latter were
foreigners and because they had been ill treated by those set over them.
Consequently they sided with Mithridates and afterward conquered Marcus
Fabius, leader of the Romans in that place. The Thracians, who had
formerly been mercenaries under Mithridates, but were then with Fabius,
and the slaves present in the Roman camp gave them vigorous assistance.
Thracians sent ahead by Fabius to reconnoitre brought back to him no
reliable report, and later, when Mithridates suddenly fell upon him as
he was proceeding along in a rather unguarded fashion, they joined in
the attack on the Romans. At the same instant the slaves (to whom the
barbarians had proclaimed freedom) took a hand in the work. They would
have crushed their adversaries, had not Mithridates while occupied with
the enemy--although over seventy years old he was in the battle--been
hit with a stone. This caused the barbarians to fear that he might die;
and while they halted battle on this account, Fabius and the others were
able to escape to safety.[-10-] The Roman general was subsequently shut
up and besieged in Cabira, but was rescued by Triarius. The latter was
in that vicinity on his way from Asia to Lucullus. Having learned what
had happened he collected as large a force as was possible with the
resources at hand and in his advance so alarmed Mithridates (probably by
the size of the Roman detachment) as to make him withdraw before
Triarius came in view. At this the Romans took courage, and pursuing the
enemy as far as Comana, whither he had retired, won a victory over him.
Mithridates was in camp on the opposite side of the river from the point
where the Romans approached, and was anxious to join battle while they
were worn out from the march. Accordingly he himself met them first, and
directed that at the crisis of the battle others should cross from
another direction, by a bridge, to take part in the attack. But whereas
he fought an equal conflict a long time he was deprived of
reinforcements by the confusion on the bridge across which many were
pushing at one time, crowded all, together.

[-11-] Thereafter they both retreated to their own fortifications and
rested, for it was now winter. Comana belongs to the present territory
of Cappadocia and was reported to have preserved right through to that
time the Tauric statue of Artemis and the race of Agamemnon. As to how
these reached them or how remained there I can find no certain account,
since there are various stories. But what I understand accurately I will
state. There are two cities in Cappadocia not far apart and of the same
name which contend for the same honors. Their myths and the relics they
exhibit are alike, and both treasure a sword, which is supposedly the
very one connected with the story of Iphigenia.

[B.C. 67 (_a.u._ 687)]

[-12-] To resume our narrative. The following year, in the consulship of
Manius Acilius and Gaius Piso, Mithridates encamped against Triarius
near Gaziura, trying to challenge and provoke him to battle; for
incidentally he himself practiced watching the Romans and trained his
army to do so. His hope was to engage and vanquish Triarius before
Lucullus came up and thus get back the rest of the province. As he could
not arouse him, he sent some men to Dadasa, a garrison where the Romans'
baggage was deposited, in order that his opponent by defending it might
be drawn into conflict. And so it was. Triarius for a time fearing the
numbers of Mithridates and expecting Lucullus, whom he had sent for,[4]
remained quiet. But when news came of the siege of Dadasa, and the
soldiers in fear for the place got disturbed and kept threatening that
if no one would lead them out they would go to the rescue at their own
bidding, he reluctantly left his position. As he was now moving forward
the barbarians fell upon him, surrounded and overwhelmed by their
numbers those near at hand, and encompassed with cavalry and killed
those who, not knowing that the river had been directed into the plain,
had fled thither.[-13-] They would have destroyed them utterly, had not
one of the Romans, pretending to come from the allies of Mithridates--no
few of whom, as I have said, were along with the expedition on an equal
footing with the Romans,--approached the leader, as if wishing to make
some communication, and wounded him. To be sure, the fellow was
immediately seized and put to death, but the barbarians were so
disheartened in view of the occurrence that many of the Romans escaped.

When Mithridates had had his wound cured, he suspected that there were
some others, too, of the enemy in the camp. So he held a review of the
soldiers as if with a different purpose, and gave the order that they
should retire singly to their tents with speed. Then he despatched the
Romans, who were thus left alone. [-14-] At this juncture the arrival of
Lucullus gave the idea to some that he would conquer Mithridates easily,
and soon recover all that had been let slip: however, he effected
nothing. For his antagonist, entrenched on the high ground near Talaura,
would not come out against him, and the other Mithridates from Media,
son-in-law of Tigranes, fell upon the Romans while scattered, and killed
many of them. Likewise the approach of Tigranes himself was announced.

Then there was mutiny in the army; for the Valerians,[5] who had been
exempted from military service and afterward had started on a campaign
again, had been restless even at Nisibis on account of the victory and
ensuing idleness, and also because they had had provisions in abundance
and the bulk of the management, Lucullus being absent on many errands.
But it was chiefly because a certain Publius Clodius (whom some called
Claudius) under the influence of an innate love of revolution solidified
the seditious element among them, though his sister was united in
wedlock to Lucullus. They were especially wrought up at that time,
moreover, through hearing that Acilius the consul, who had been sent out
to relieve Lucullus for reasons mentioned, was drawing near. They held
him in slight repute, regarding him as a mere private citizen.
[-15-]Lucullus was in a dilemma both for these reasons and because
Marcius[6] (consul the year before Acilius), who was en route to
Cilicia, the province he was destined to govern, had refused a request
of his for aid. He hesitated to depart through a barren country and
feared to stand his ground: hence he set out against Tigranes, to see if
he could repulse the latter while off his guard and tired from the
march, and thus put a stop, to a certain extent, to the mutiny of the
soldiers. He attained neither object. The army accompanied him to a
certain spot from which it was possible to turn aside into Cappadocia,
and all with one consent without a word turned off in that direction.
The Valerians, indeed, learning that they had been exempted from the
campaign by the authorities at home, withdrew altogether.

[-16-] Let no one wonder that Lucullus, who had proved himself of all
men most versed in warfare, and was the first Roman to cross the Taurus
with an army and for hostile operations, who had vanquished two powerful
kings and would have captured them if he had chosen to end the war
quickly, was unable to rule his fellow-soldiers, and that they were
always revolting and finally left him in the lurch. He required a great
deal of them, was difficult of access, strict in his demands for labor,
and inexorable in his punishments: he did not understand how to win over
a man by argument, or to attach him to himself by kindliness, or to make
a comrade of him by sharing honors or wealth,--all of which means are
necessary, especially in a large body, and most of all in a body of
soldiers. Hence the soldiers, as long as they prospered and got booty
that was a fair return for their dangers, obeyed him: but when they
encountered trouble and fell into fear instead of hopes, they no longer
heeded him at all. The proof of this is that Pompey took these same men
(he enrolled the Valerians again) and kept them without the slightest
show of revolt. So much does man differ from man.

[-17-] After this action of the soldiers Mithridates won back almost all
his domain and wrought dire devastation in Cappadocia, since neither
Lucullus defended it, under the excuse that Acilius was near, nor
Acilius himself. For the latter, who in the first place was hurrying on
to rob Lucullus of the fruits of victory, now, when he learned what had
taken place, did not come to the camp, but delayed in Bithynia. As for
Marcius, the pretext which he gave for not assisting Lucullus was that
his soldiers refused to follow him. When he reached Cilicia he received
one Menemachus, a deserter from Tigranes, and Clodius who had revolted
under Lucullus, and, fearing a repetition of the doings at Nisibis, he
put him in command of the fleet; for Marcius, too, had one of his
sisters as wife. Now Clodius, after being captured by the pirates and
released by them in consequence of their fear of Pompey, came to Antioch
in Syria, declaring that he would be their ally against the Arabians,
with whom the people were then at variance. There, likewise, he caused
some to revolt, and his activity nearly cost him his life.

[-18-] ... he spares.[7] In his eagerness for supremacy he assailed even
the Cretans who had come to terms with him, and not heeding their
objection that there was a state of truce he hastened to do them harm
before Pompey came up. Octavius, who was there, had no troops and so
kept quiet: in fact, he had not been sent to do any fighting, but to
take charge of the cities. Cornelius Sisenna, the governor of Greece,
did, to be sure, when he heard the news, come to Crete and advise
Metellus to spare the villages, but on failing to persuade him made no
active opposition. Metellus, after many other outrages, captured by
treachery the city Eleuthera and extorted money from it. The traitors
had repeatedly at night saturated with vinegar a very large brick tower,
most difficult of capture, so that it became brittle. Next he took by
storm Lappa, in spite of Octavius's occupancy, and did the latter no
harm, but put to death the Cilicians, his followers. [-19-]Octavius,
incensed at this, no longer remained quiet, but first used the army of
Sisenna (that general had fallen sick and died) to aid here and there
the victims of oppression, and then, when the detachment of Metellus had
retired, proceeded to Aristion at Hieropydna, by whose side he fought.
Aristion, on the retreat from Cydonia about that time, had conquered one
Lucius Bassus who sailed out to oppose him, and had gained possession of
Hieropydna. They held out for a while, but at the approach of Metellus
left the fortification and put to sea. There they encountered a storm,
and were driven ashore, losing many men. Henceforth Metellus was master
of the entire island.

In this way the Cretans, who had been free through all preceding ages
and had never owned a foreign lord, were enslaved; and from their
subjugation Metellus obtained his title. He was, however, unable to have
Panares and Lasthenes (whom he had also captured) march in his triumph.
For Pompey had got them away beforehand by persuading one of the
tribunes that it was to him they had submitted and not to Metellus.

[-20-] I will now relate the progress of Pompey's career. The pirates,
occupied in plundering, kept troubling continually those who sailed as
well as the dwellers on land. There was never a time when piracy was not
practiced, nor may it cease so long as the nature of mankind remains the
same. But formerly plundering was limited to certain localities and
small bands operating only during the regular season on sea and on land;
whereas at this time, ever since war had been carried on continuously in
many different places, and many cities had been uprooted, while
sentences hung over the heads of all the fugitives even, and fear
confronted men in everything, large numbers turned to plundering. Now
the bandit organizations on the mainland, being rather in sight of
towns, which could thus perceive a source of injury close by, proved not
so very difficult to overwhelm and were somehow broken up with a fair
degree of ease; but those on the sea had grown to the greatest
proportions. While the Romans were busy with antagonists they
flourished. They sailed about to many quarters, adding to their band all
of like condition, and some of these, after the fashion of allies,
assisted many others.[-21-] How much they accomplished with the help of
the outsiders has been told. When those nations were overthrown, instead
of ceasing they did much serious damage alone by themselves to the
Romans and Roman allies. They were no longer in small force, but were
accustomed to sail in great expeditions; and they had generals, so that
they had acquired a great reputation. They robbed and harried first and
foremost sailors: for such not even the winter season was any longer
safe; the pirates through daring and through practice and through
success were now showing absolute fearlessness in their seamanship.
Second, they pillaged even craft lying in harbors. If any one ventured
to put out against them, usually he was defeated and perished; but even
if he conquered he would be unable to capture any of the enemy by reason
of the speed of their ships. Accordingly, they would return after a
little, as if victors, to ravage and set in flames not only farms and
country districts, but also whole cities. But other places they
conciliated, so as to gain apparently friendly naval stations and winter

[-22-] As they progressed by these means it became customary for them to
go into the interior, and they did much mischief even among those who
had no sea-traffic. This is the way they treated not only those outside
of their body of allies, but the land of Italy itself. Believing that
they would obtain greater gains from that quarter and that they would
terrify all others still more, if they refused to hold their hands even
from that country, they sailed into the very harbor of Ostia, and also
of other cities in the vicinity, burned the ships and ravaged
everything. Finally, as no setback occurred, they took up their abode on
the land, disposing of whatever men they did not kill, and of the spoils
they took quite fearlessly, as if in their own territory. And though
some plundered in one region and others elsewhere,--it not being
possible for the same persons to do harm the whole length of the
sea,--they nevertheless showed such friendship one for another that they
sent money and assistance even to those entirely unknown, as if to
nearest kin. One of the largest elements in their strength was that
those who helped any of them all would honor, and those who came into
collision with any of them all would despoil.

[-23-] To such an extent did the supremacy of the pirates grow that
their hostility became a matter of moment, constant, admitting no
precaution, implacable. The Romans, of course, from time to time heard
and saw a little of what was going on, inasmuch as imports in general
ceased coming in and the corn supply was shut off entirely; but they
gave no serious attention to it when they ought. On the contrary, they
would send out fleets and generals, according as they were stirred by
individual reports, but effected nothing; instead, they caused their
allies all the greater distress by these very means, until they were
finally reduced to extremities. Then at last they came together and
deliberated many days as to what steps must be taken. Wearied by the
continued dangers and noting how great and far reaching was the war
raised against them, and believing, too, that it was impossible to
assail the pirates all at once or individually, because the latter gave
mutual assistance and it was impracticable to drive them back everywhere
at once, the people fell into a dilemma and into great despair of making
any successful stroke. In the end one Aulus Gabinius, a tribune, set
forth his plan: he was either prompted by Pompey or wished to do him
some favor; certainly he was not impelled by any love of the common
welfare, for he was the vilest of men: his plan was that they should
choose from among the ex-consuls one general with full powers over all,
who should command for three years and have the use of a huge force,
with many lieutenants. He did not actually utter the name of Pompey, but
it was easy to see that if once the multitude should hear of any such
proposition, they would choose him. [-24-] So it turned out. His motion
was carried and immediately all save the senate began to favor Pompey.
That body was in favor of enduring anything whatever at the hands of the
freebooters rather than to put so great command into Pompey's hands. In
fact they came near slaying Gabinius in the very halls of the senate,
but he eluded them somehow. When the people learned the intention of the
senators they raised an uproar, going to the point of making a rush at
them as they sat assembled: and if the elders had not gotten out of the
way, the populace would without doubt have killed them. They all
scattered and secreted themselves except Gaius Piso the consul (it was
in his year and Acilius's that these events took place), who was
arrested and condemned to perish for the others; but Gabinius begged him
off. After this the leading men themselves gladly held their peace on
condition of being allowed to live, but used influence on the nine
tribunes, to have them oppose Gabinius. All of the latter, however,
except a Lucius Trebellius and Lucius Roscius, out of fear of the
multitude would not say a word in opposition; and those two men, who had
the courage, were unable to redeem any of their promises by either word
or deed. For when the appointed day came on which the motion was to be
ratified, things went as follows.

Pompey, who was thoroughly anxious to command, and already by reason of
his own ambition and the zeal of the populace no longer so much regarded
this commission as an honor as the failure to win it a disgrace, seeing
the opposition of those in power had a wish to appear as if compulsion
were being used. In general he was as little as possible in the habit of
revealing his real desires, but still more on this occasion did he feign
reluctance, because of the ensuing jealousy, should he of his own accord
lay claim to the leadership, and because of the glory if he should be
appointed unwillingly as the one most worthy to command.

[-25-] He now came forward and said: "Quirites, I rejoice at the honor
laid upon me by you. All men naturally take pride in benefits conferred
upon them by the citizens, and I, who have often enjoyed honors at your
hands, scarcely know how to be worthily pleased at the present
contingency. However, I do not think that you should be so insatiable
with regard to my services, nor that I should incessantly be in some
position of command. For I have labored since childhood, and as you
know, you should be promoting others as well. Do you not recall how many
toils I underwent in the war against Cinna, though I was the veriest
youth, or how many labors in Sicily and in Africa before I had quite
reached the age of iuvenis, or how many dangers I encountered in Spain,
while I was not as yet a senator? I shall not say that you have shown
yourselves ungrateful toward me for all these labors. How could I? Quite
the reverse, in addition to the many other important favors of which you
have deemed me worthy, the very fact that I was trusted to undertake the
post of general against Sertorius, when no one else was either willing
or able, and that I held a triumph, contrary to custom, after resigning
it, brought me the greatest honor. I only say that I have undergone many
anxieties and many dangers, that I am worn out in body and wearied in
soul. Do not keep reckoning that I am still young, nor calculate that I
have lived just so many years. For if you count up the campaigns that I
have made and the dangers I have faced, you will find them far more in
number than my years, and by this means you will more readily believe
that I can no longer withstand the anxieties and the hardships."

[-26-] "Some one might possibly reply: 'But you see that all such
opportunities for toil are causes of jealousy and hatred.' This feature
you hold in no account--you ought not properly even to pretend to regard
it--but to me it would prove most grievous. And I must admit that I am
not so much disturbed or troubled by any danger to be encountered in the
midst of wars as by such exhibitions. For what person in his right mind
could take pleasure in living among men who are jealous of him, and who
would feel the heart to carry out any public enterprise, if destined in
case of failure to submit to punishment and if successful to be the
object of rancorous envy? In view of these and other considerations
allow me to remain at peace and attend to my own business, so that now
at last I may bestow some care upon my private affairs and not perish
from exhaustion. Against the pirates elect somebody else. There are many
who are both willing and able to serve as admirals, both younger and
older men, so that your choice from so numerous a company becomes easy.
Of course I am not the only one who loves you, nor am I alone skilled in
warfare, but--not seeming to favor any by mentioning names--equally so
is A or B."

[-27-] At this point in his harangue Gabinius, interrupting, cried:
"Pompey's behavior in this very matter, Quirites, is worthy of his
character. He does not seek the leadership, nor does he accept it
without thought when granted him. An upright man has no business,
generally speaking, to desire the annoyances incident to office, and it
is Pompey's way to undertake all tasks imposed upon him only with due
consideration, in order that he may accomplish them with corresponding
safety. Precipitation in promises and in action, more hasty than the
occasion demands, causes the downfall of many; but exactitude at the
start as well as in execution possesses a constant value and is to the
advantage of all. You must choose not what would satisfy Pompey, but
what is of benefit to the state. Not office seekers, but those who have
capacity should be appointed to the business in hand; the former exist
in very large numbers, but any other such man as my candidate you will
not find. You recall, further, how many reverses of a serious nature we
endured in the war against Sertorius through lack of a general, and that
we found no one else among young or old adapted to it except the man
before you; and that we sent him to the field in place of both consuls,
although at that time he had not yet reached a mature age and was not a
member of the senate. I should be glad if we did have many able men, and
if I ought to pray for such, I would so pray: since, however, this
ability does not depend on prayer or come of its own accord to any one,
but a man has to be born with a natural bent for it, to learn what is
pertinent and practice what is fitting and beyond everything to enjoy
good fortune, which would very rarely fall to the lot of the same man,
you must all unanimously, whenever such an one is found, both support
him and make the fullest use of him even if he does not wish it. Such
violence proves most noble both to him who exerts it and to him who
suffers it,--to the former because he would be preserved by it, and to
the latter because it would preserve the citizens, in whose behalf the
excellent and patriotic man would most readily give up both body and

[-28-] "Do you think that whereas this Pompey when a youth could conduct
campaigns, be general, increase our possessions, preserve those of our
allies, and acquire those of our adversaries, now, in the prime of life,
when every man fairly surpasses himself, with a mass of additional
experience gained from wars he could not prove most useful to you? Will
you reject, now that he has reached man's estate, him whom while iuvenis
you chose to lead? Will you not confide this campaign to the man, now
become a member of the senate, to whom while still a knight you
committed those wars? Will you not, now that you have most amply tested
his mettle, commit the present emergency, no less pressing than former
ones, to him for whom alone you asked in the face of those urgent
dangers ere you had applied any accurate test at all? Will you not send
out against the pirates one, now an ex-consul, whom before he could yet
properly hold office you elected against Sertorius? Rather, do not for a
moment adopt any other course; and Pompey, do you heed your country, and
me. By her you were borne, by her you were reared. You must be a slave
to whatever is for her advantage, not shrinking from any hardship or
danger to secure it. And should it become necessary for you to lose your
life, you must in that case not await your fated day but embrace
whatever death meets you. [-29-] But truly I am ridiculous to give you
this advice,--you who in so many great conflicts have exhibited both
your bravery and your love for your country. Heed me, therefore, and
these citizens here; do not fear because some are envious. Rather press
on all the more for this very reason to a goal which is the friendship
of the majority and the common advantage of us all, and scorn your
traducers. Or, if you are willing to grieve them a little, take command
for this very reason, that you may distress them by serving and winning
glory contrary to their expectations, and that you may in person set an
ending worthy of yourself beside your former accomplishments, by ridding
us of many great evils."

[-30-] When Gabinius had thus expressed himself, Trebellius strove to
make a dissenting speech; but as he did not receive leave to speak he
proceeded to oppose the casting of a vote. Gabinius was incensed, and
delayed the balloting regarding Pompey, but introduced a new motion
concerning the same man. The first seventeen tribes to register an
opinion decided that Trebellius was at fault and might be no longer
tribune. And not until the eighteenth was on the point of voting the
same way, was he barely induced to maintain silence. Roscius, seeing
this, did not dare utter a word, but by a gesture of his raised hand
urged them to choose two men, so that he might by so doing cut off a
little of Pompey's supremacy. At this gesticulation of his the crowd
gave a great threatening shout, whereat a crow flying above their heads
was so startled that it fell as if smitten by lightning. After that
Roscius kept not only his tongue but his hand still. Catulus was for
remaining silent, but Gabinius urged him to make some speech, inasmuch
as he ranked among the foremost in the senate and it seemed likely that
through his agency the rest might reach a harmonious decision; it was
Gabinius's hope, likewise, that he would join in approving the general
desire from the fact that he saw the tribunes in bad straits.
Accordingly Catulus received permission to speak, since all respected
and honored him as one who at all times spoke and acted for their
advantage, and delivered an address about as follows:

[-31-] "That I have been exceedingly zealous, Quirites, in behalf of
your body, all of you, doubtless, clearly understand. This being so, it
is requisite for me to set forth in simple fashion and quite frankly
what I know to be for the good of the State; and it is only fair for you
to listen to it calmly and afterward to deliberate. For, if you raise an
uproar, you will fail of obtaining some perhaps very useful suggestion
which you might have heard, but if you pay attention to what is said you
will be sure to discover definitely something to your advantage. I for
my part assert in the first place most emphatically that it is not
proper to confide to any one man so many positions of command, one after
another. This has been forbidden by law, and by test has been found to
be most perilous. What made Marius such a monster was practically
nothing else than being entrusted with so many wars in the briefest
space of time and being made consul six times as rapidly as possible:
and similarly the cause of Sulla's frenzy was that he held command of
the armies so many years in succession, and later was appointed
dictator, then consul. It does not lie in man's nature for a person, not
necessarily young but mature quite as often, after exercise in authority
for a considerable period to be willing to abide by ancestral
customs.[-32-] I do not say this in any spirit of condemnation of
Pompey, but because it does not appear at all advantageous to you on
general grounds, and further it is not permitted according to the laws.
For if an enterprise brings honor to those deemed worthy of it, all whom
that enterprise concerns ought to obtain honor; this is the principle of
democracy: and if it brings labor, all ought to share that labor
proportionately; this is mere equity.

"Again, in such an affair it is to your advantage for many individuals
to have practice in exploits, so that as a result of trial your choice
may be an easy one from among those who can be trusted for any urgent
business; but if you take that other course it is quite inevitable that
the scarcity should be great of those who will practice what they
should, and to whom interests can be trusted. This is the chief reason
why you were at a loss for a general in the war with Sertorius; previous
to that time you were accustomed to employ the same men for a long
period. Consequently, even if in all other respects Pompey deserves to
be elected against the pirates, still, inasmuch as he would be chosen
contrary to the injunction of the laws and to the principles laid down
by experience, it behooves both you and him most strongly that it be not

[-33-] "This is the first and most important point I have to mention.
Second arises the consideration, that when consuls and praetors and those
serving in their place can take offices and leaderships in a way
prescribed by the laws it is neither decent nor advantageous for you to
overlook them and introduce some new office. To what end do you elect
the annual officials, if you are going to make no use of them for such
businesses? Not, presumably, that they may stalk about in
purple-bordered togas, nor that endued with the name alone of the office
they may be deprived of its duties. How can you fail to alienate these
and all the rest who have a purpose to enter politics at all, if you
break down the ancient offices, and entrust nothing to those elected by
law, but assign a strange and previously non-existent position of
command to a private individual? [-34-] If there should be any necessity
of choosing, in addition to the annual officials, still another, there
is for this, too, an ancient precedent,--I mean the dictator. However,
because he held such power, our fathers did not appoint him on all
occasions nor for a longer period than six months. Accordingly, if you
need any such person, you may, without transgressing the laws or making
light of the common welfare, designate either Pompey or any one else
dictator,--on condition that he shall sway for not more than the time
ordained, nor outside of Italy. You doubtless are not ignorant that this
latter limitation, too, our fathers guarded scrupulously, and no
instance would be found of a dictator chosen for any other country,
except one sent to Sicily, and that without accomplishing anything. But
if Italy needs no such person and you would no longer endure, apart from
the functions of dictator, even the name (this is clear from your anger
against Sulla), how would it be right for a new position of command to
be created, and that, too, for three years and embracing practically all
interests both in Italy and without? What disasters come to cities from
such a course, and how many men on account of lawless lust for rule have
often disturbed our populace and done themselves countless evils, you
all alike understand.

[-35-] "About this, then, I shall say no more. Who can fail to know that
on general principles it is neither decent nor advantageous to commit
matters to any one man, or for any one man to be put in charge of all
the blessings we own, even if he be the best man conceivable? Great
honors and excessive powers excite and ruin even such persons. I ask
you, however, to consider my next assertion,--that it is not possible
for one man to preside over the entire sea and to manage the entire war
properly. You must, if you shall in the least do what is needful, make
war on them everywhere at once, so that they may neither unite, nor by
finding a refuge among those not attacked, become hard to capture. Any
one man who might be in command could by no manner of means accomplish
this. For how on about the same days could he fight in Italy and in
Cilicia, Egypt and Syria, Greece and Spain, in the Ionian Sea and the
islands? Consequently you need many soldiers and generals both, to take
matters in hand, if they are going to be of any use to you. [-36-] In
case any one declares that even if you confide the entire war to some
one person he will most certainly have plenty of admirals and
lieutenants, my reply would be: 'Would it not be much juster and more
advantageous for these men destined to serve under him to be chosen by
you beforehand for the very purpose and to receive an independent
command from you? What prevents such a course?' By this plan they will
pay more heed to the war, since each of them is entrusted with his own
particular share and cannot lay upon any one else the responsibility for
neglect of it, and there will be keener rivalry among them because they
are independent and will themselves get the glory for whatever they
effect. By the other plan what man do you think, subordinate to some one
else, will with equal readiness perform any duty, when the credit for
his victory will belong not to himself but to another?

"Accordingly, that one man could not at one time carry on so great a war
has been admitted on the part of Gabinius himself, in that he asks for
many helpers to be given to whomever is elected. Our final consideration
is whether actual commanders or assistants should be sent, and whether
they should be despatched by the entire populace, or by the commandant
alone for his assistance. Every one of you would agree that my
proposition is more law-abiding in all respects, and not merely in
reference to the case of the freebooters. Aside from that, notice how it
looks for all our offices to be overthrown on the pretext of 'pirates'
and for no one of them either in Italy or in subject territory during
this time ..." [8]

[-37-] ... and of Italy in place of consul for three years, they
assigned to him fifteen lieutenants and voted all the ships, money and
armaments that he might wish to take. These measures as well as the
others which the senate decided to be necessary to their effectiveness
in any given case that body ratified even against its will. Its action
was prompted more particularly by the fact that when Piso refused to
allow the subordinate officers to hold enlistments in Gallia
Narbonensis, of which he was governor, the populace was furiously
enraged and would straightway have cast him out of office, had not
Pompey begged him off. So after making preparations as the business and
his judgment demanded he patrolled at one time the whole stretch of sea
that the pirates were troubling, partly himself and partly through the
agency of his under officers, and subdued the greater part of it that
very year. For whereas the force that he directed was vast both in point
of fleet and in point of heavy-armed infantry, so that he was
irresistible both on sea and on land, his kindness to those who made
terms with him was equally vast, so that he won over great numbers by
such procedure. Persons defeated by his troops who made trial of his
clemency went over to his side very readily. For besides other ways in
which he took care of them he would give them any lands he saw vacant
and cities that needed inhabitants, in order that they might never again
through poverty fall into need of criminal exertions. Among the other
cities settled in this way was the one called in commemoration
Pompeiopolis. It is in the coast region of Cilicia and had been sacked
by Tigranes. Soli was its original name.

[-38-] Besides these events in the year of Acilius and Piso, an
ordinance directed at men convicted of bribery regarding offices was
framed by the consuls themselves, to the effect that no one of those
involved should either hold office or be a senator, and should
furthermore be subject to a fine. For now that the power of the tribunes
had returned to its ancient state, and many of the persons whose names
had been stricken off by the censors were aspiring to get back the rank
of senator by one means or another, a great many political unions and
combinations were formed aiming at all the offices. The consuls took
this course not because they were angry at the affair--they themselves
were shown to have been actively engaged, and Piso, who was indicted by
several persons on this charge, escaped being brought to trial only by
purchasing exemption--but because pressure had been exerted by the
senate. The reason for this was that one Gaius Cornelius, while tribune,
undertook to lay very severe penalties upon such unions, and the
populace sided with him. The senate, being aware that an excessive
punishment threatened has some deterrent force, but that men are then
not easily found to accuse or condemn the guilty, since the latter will
be in desperate danger, whereas moderation stimulates many to
accusations and does not divert condemnations, was desirous of
remodeling his proposition somehow, and bade the consuls frame it as a
law.[-39-] Now when the comitiae had been announced in advance and
accordingly no law could be enacted till they were held, the canvassers
kept doing much evil in this intervening time, to such an extent that
assassinations occurred. As a consequence the senators voted that the
law should be introduced before the elections and a body-guard be given
to the consuls. Cornelius, angry at this, submitted a proposal that the
senators be not allowed to grant office to any one seeking it in a way
not prescribed by law, nor to vote away any other prerogative of the
people. This had been the law from very early times: it was not,
however, being observed in practice. Thereupon arose a great uproar,
since many of the senate and Piso in particular resisted; the crowd
broke his staves to pieces and threatened to tear him limb from limb.
Seeing the rush they made, Cornelius for the time being before calling
for any vote dismissed the assembly: later he added to the law that the
senate should invariably hold a preliminary consultation about these
cases and that it be compulsory to have the preliminary degree ratified
by the people.[-40-] So he secured the passage of both that law and
another now to be explained.

All the praetors themselves compiled and published the principles
according to which they intended to try cases; for all the decrees
regarding contracts had not yet been laid down. Now since they were not
in the habit of doing this once for all and did not observe the rules as
written, but often made changes in them and incidentally a number of
clauses naturally appeared in some one's favor or to some one's hurt, he
moved that they should at the very start announce the principles they
would use, and not swerve from them at all. In fine, the Romans took
such good care about that time to have no bribery, that in addition to
punishing those convicted they furthermore honored the accusers. For
instance, when Marcus Cotta dismissed the quaestor Publius Oppius
because of bribery and suspicion of conspiracy, though he himself had
made great profit out of Bithynia, they exalted Gaius Carbo who
thereupon accused Cotta, with consular honors, notwithstanding he had
served as tribune merely. Subsequently the latter himself was governor
of Bithynia and erred no less widely than Cotta; he was, in his turn,
accused by his son and convicted. Some persons, of course, can more
easily censure others than admonish themselves, and when it comes to
their own case commit very readily deeds for which they think their
neighbors deserving of punishment. Hence they can not, from the mere
fact that they prosecute others, inspire confidence in their own
detestation of the acts in question.

[-41-] As for Lucius Lucullus, he finished his term of office as city
praetor, but on being chosen by lot thereafter to serve as governor of
Sardinia he refused, detesting the business because of the throng who
were fostering corruption in foreign lands. That he was suited for the
place he had given the fullest proof. Acilius once commanded the chair
from which he had heard cases to be broken in pieces because Lucullus
seeing Acilius pass by did not rise from his seat: yet the praetor did
not give way to rage, and after that both he and his fellow officials
tried cases standing up on account of the consul's action.

[-42-] Roscius likewise introduced a law, and so did Gaius Manilius, at
the time when they were tribunes. The former received some praise for
his,--for it consisted in marking off sharply the seats of the knights
in theatres from the other locations,--but Manilius came near having to
stand trial. He had granted the class of freedmen, some of whom he got
together from the populace on the last day of the year and toward
evening, the right to vote with those who had freed them. The senate
learned of it immediately on the following day, the first of the month,
the day on which Lucius Tullius and Aemilius Lepidus entered upon the
consulship, and rejected his law.

[B.C. 66 (_a.u._ 688)]

He, then, in fear because the populace was terribly angry, at first
ascribed the idea to Crassus and some others; as no one believed him,
however, he paid court to Pompey even in the latter's absence,
especially because he knew that Gabinius had the greatest influence with
him. He went so far as to offer him command of the war against Tigranes
and against Mithridates, and the governorship of Bithynia and Cilicia at
the same time.

[-43-] Now irritation and opposition had developed even then on the part
of the nobles particularly because Marcius and Acilius were making peace
before the period of their command had expired. And the populace,
although a little earlier it had sent the men to establish a government
over the conquered territory, regarding the war as at an end from the
letters which Lucullus sent them, nevertheless voted to do as Manilius
proposed. Those who urged them most to this course were Caesar and Marcus
Cicero. These men seconded the measure not because they thought it
advantageous to the state nor because they wished to do Pompey a favor.
Inasmuch, however, as things were certain to turn out that way, Caesar
cultivated the good will of the multitude: he saw, in the first place,
how much stronger they were than the senate and further he paved the way
for a similar vote some time to be passed for his own profit.
Incidentally, too, he was willing to render Pompey more envied and
invidious as a result of the honors conferred upon him, so that the
people might get their fill of him more quickly. Cicero saw fit to play
politics and was endeavoring to make it clear to both populace and
nobles that to whichever side he should attach himself, he would
substantially benefit them. He was accustomed to fill a double role and
espoused now the cause of one party and again that of the other, to the
end that he might be sought after by both. A little while before he had
said that he chose the side of the optimates and for that reason wished
to be aedile rather than tribune; but now he went over to the side of
the rabble.[-44-] Soon after, as a suit was instituted by the nobles
against Manilius and the latter was striving to cause some delay about
it, Cicero tried to thwart him, and only after obstinate objection did
he put off his case till the following day, offering as an excuse that
the year was drawing to a close. He was enabled to do this by the fact
that he was praetor and president of the court. But since the crowd was
still discontented he entered their assembly, presumably compelled
thereto by the tribunes, where he inveighed against the senate and
promised to speak in support of Manilius. For this he fell into ill
repute generally, and was termed "deserter." [Probably spurious:
"because Caesar cultivated the populace from the beginning, whereas
Cicero usually played a double part; sometimes he sided with the people,
sometimes with the assembly, and for this reason he was termed
'deserter.'"--Mai, p. 552]: but a tumult that immediately arose
prevented the court from being convened. Publius Paetus and Cornelius
Sulla (a nephew of that great Sulla) who had been appointed consuls and
then convicted of bribery, plotted to kill their accusers, Gotta and
Torquatus, Lucii, especially after the latter had been convicted in
turn. Among others who had been suborned were Gnaeus Piso and Lucius
Catiline, a man of great audacity; he had himself sought the office and
was on this account inclined to anger. They were unable, however, to
accomplish anything because the plot was announced beforehand and a
body-guard given to Cotta and Torquatus by the senate. Indeed, a decree
would have been pronounced against them, had not one of the tribunes
opposed it. And since even so Piso showed signs of audacity, the senate
being afraid he would cause some riot sent him straightway to Spain on
the pretext that he was to look after some disorder.[-45-] He there met
his death at the hands of natives whom he had wronged.

Pompey was at first making ready to sail to Crete and to Metellus, and
when he learned the decrees that had been passed pretended to be annoyed
as before, and charged the members of the opposite faction with always
loading business upon him so that he might meet some reverse. In reality
he received the news with the greatest joy, and no longer regarding as
of any importance Crete or the other maritime points wherever anything
had been left unsettled, he made preparations for the war with the

Meanwhile, wishing to test the disposition of Mithridates, he sent
Metrophanes bearing friendly proposals to him. Mithridates at that time
held him in contempt; for Arsaces, king of the Parthians, having died
about this period he expected to conciliate Phraates, his successor. But
Pompey speedily contracted friendship with Phraates on the same terms
and persuaded him to invade in advance the Armenia belonging to
Tigranes. When Mithridates ascertained this he was alarmed and by means
of an embassy immediately arranged a treaty. As for Pompey's command
that he lay down his arms and deliver up the deserters, he had no chance
to deliberate; for the large number of deserters who were in his camp
hearing it and fearing they should be delivered up, and the barbarians
fearing that they should be compelled to fight without them, raised an
uproar. And they would have done some harm to the king, had he not by
pretending falsely that he had sent the envoys not for the truce but to
spy out the Roman troops, with difficulty kept them in check.

[-46-]Pompey, therefore, having decided that he must needs fight, in the
course of his other preparations made an additional enlistment of the
Valerians. When he was now in Galatia, Lucullus met him. The latter
declared the whole conflict over, and said there was no further need of
an expedition and that for this reason also the men sent by the senate
for the administration of the districts had arrived. Failing to persuade
him to retire Lucullus turned to abuse, stigmatizing him as officious, a
lover of war, a lover of office, and so on. Pompey, paying him but
slight attention, forbade every one any longer to obey his commands and
pressed on against Mithridates, being in haste to join issue with him as
quickly as possible.

[-47-] The king for a time kept fleeing, since he was inferior in
numbers: he continually devastated the country before him, gave Pompey a
long chase, and made him feel the want of provisions. But when the Roman
invaded Armenia both for the above reasons and because he wanted to
capture it while abandoned, Mithridates fearing it would be occupied
before his advent also entered the country. He took possession of a
strong hill opposite and there rested with his entire army, hoping to
exhaust the Romans by lack of provisions, while he could get abundance
from many quarters, being in a subject territory. He kept sending down
some of his cavalry into the plain, which was bare, and injured
considerably those who encountered them; after such a movement he would
receive large accessions of deserters.

Pompey was not bold enough to assail them in that position, but he moved
his camp to another spot where the surrounding country was wooded and he
would be troubled less by the cavalry and bowmen of his adversaries, and
there he set an ambuscade where an opportunity offered. Then with some
few he openly approached the camp of the barbarians, threw them into
disorder, and enticing them to the point he wished killed a large
number. Encouraged by this, he sent some one way, some another, over the
country after provisions.

[-48-] When Pompey went on procuring these in safety and through certain
men's help had become master of the land of Anaitis, which belongs to
Armenia and is dedicated to some god after whom it is named, and many
others kept seceding to him, while the soldiers of Marcius were added to
his force, Mithridates becoming frightened no longer kept his position,
but immediately started unobserved in the night, and thereafter by night
marches advanced into the Armenia of Tigranes. Pompey followed on, eager
to secure a battle. This, however, he could not do by day, for they
would not come out of their camp, and he did not venture the attempt by
night, fearing his ignorance of the country, until they got near the
frontier. Then, knowing that they would escape, he was compelled to have
a night battle. Having decided on this course he started off before them
at noontime, unobserved of the barbarians, by the road along which they
were to march.

Finding a sunken part of the road, between some low hills, he there
stationed his army on the higher ground and awaited the enemy. When the
enemy entered the sunken way, with confidence and without an advance
guard (since they had suffered no injury previously and now at last were
gaining safety, so that they expected that the Romans would no longer
follow them), he fell upon them in the darkness. There was no
illumination from heaven and they had no kind of light.

[-49-] The nature of the ensuing battle I will now describe. First, all
the trumpeters together at a signal sounded the attack, next the
soldiers and all the multitude raised a shout, some rattling their
spears against their shields, and others stones against the bronze
implements. The hollowed mountains took up and gave back their din with
most frightful effect, so that the barbarians, hearing them suddenly in
the night and the wilderness, were terribly alarmed, thinking they had
encountered some supernatural phenomenon. Directly the Romans from the
heights smote them at all points with stones, arrows, and javelins,
inevitably wounding some by reason of their numbers, and reduced them to
every extremity of evil. They were not drawn up in line of battle, but
for marching, and both men and women were moving about in the same place
with horses and camels and all sorts of implements; some were borne on
coursers, others on chariots, covered wagons, and carts
indiscriminately; and some getting wounded already and others expecting
to be wounded caused confusion, in consequence of which they were more
easily slain, since they kept becoming entangled one with another. This
was what they endured while they were still being struck from afar off.
But when the Romans after exhausting their long-distance ammunition
charged down upon them, the edges of the force were slaughtered, one
blow sufficing for their death, since the majority were unarmed, and the
center was crushed together, as all by reason of the encompassing fear
fell toward it. So they perished, pushed about and trampled down by one
another without being able to defend themselves or venture any movement
against the enemy. For whereas they were strongest in cavalry and
bowmen, they were unable to see before them in the darkness and unable
to make any manoeuvre in the defile.

When the moon rose, some rejoiced, with the idea that in the light they
could certainly ward off some one. And they would have been benefited a
little, if the Romans had not had the moon behind them, and so produced
much illusion both in sight and in action, while assailing them now on
this side and now on that. For the attackers, being many in number and
all in one body, casting the deepest imaginable shadow, baffled their
opponents before they had yet come into conflict with them. The
barbarians thinking them near would strike the empty air in vain and
when they reached common ground would be wounded in the shadow where
they were not expecting it. Thus numbers of them were killed and the
captives were not fewer than the slain. Many also escaped, among them

[-50-] The latter's next move was to hasten to Tigranes. On sending
couriers to him, however, he found no friendship awaiting him, because
Tigranes' son had risen against him, and while holding the youth under
guard[9] the father suspected that Mithridates, his grandfather, had
been responsible for the quarrel. For this reason far from receiving him
Tigranes even arrested and threw into prison the men sent ahead by him.
Failing therefore of the hoped-for refuge he turned aside into Colchis,
and thence on foot reached Maeotis and the Bosphorus, using persuasion
with some and force with others. He recovered the territory, too, having
terrified Machares, his son, who had espoused the cause of the Romans
and was then ruling it, to such an extent that he would not even come
into his presence. And him Mithridates caused to be killed through his
associates to whom he promised to grant immunity and money.

In the course of these events Pompey sent men to pursue him: when,
however, he outstripped them by fleeing across the Phasis, the Roman
leader colonized a city in the territory where he had been victorious,
bestowing it upon the wounded and the more elderly of his soldiers. Many
of those living round about voluntarily joined the settlement and later
generations of them are in existence even now, being called Nicopolitans
[10] and paying tribute to the province of Cappadocia.

[-51-] While Pompey was thus engaged, Tigranes, the son of Tigranes,
taking with him some of the foremost men because the father was not
ruling to suit them, fled for refuge to Phraates; and, though the
latter, in view of the agreements made with Pompey, stopped to consider
what it was advisable to do, persuaded to invade Armenia. They came,
actually, as far as the Artaxatians, subduing all the country before
them, and assailed those men likewise. Tigranes the elder in fear of
them had fled to the mountains. But since it seemed that time was
required for the siege, Phraates left a part of the force with his own
son and retired to his native country. Thereupon the father took the
field against the young Tigranes, thus isolated, and conquered him. The
latter, in his flight, set out at first for Mithridates, his
grandfather; but when he learned that he had been defeated and was
rather in need of aid than able to assist any one, he went over to the
Romans. Pompey, employing him as a guide, made an expedition into
Armenia and against his father.

[-52-] The latter, learning this, in fear immediately sent heralds to
him for peace, and delivered up the envoys of Mithridates. When, on
account of the opposition of his son, he could gain no moderate terms,
and even as things were Pompey had crossed the Araxes and drawn near the
Artaxatians, then at last Tigranes surrendered the town to him and came
voluntarily into the midst of his camp. The old king had arrayed himself
so far as possible in a way to indicate his former dignity and his
present humbled condition, in order that he might seem to his enemy
worthy of respect and pity. He had put off his tunic shot with white and
the all-purple candys, but wore his tiara and headband. Pompey, however,
sent an attendant and made him descend from his horse; for Tigranes was
riding up as if to enter the very fortification, mounted on horseback
according to the custom of his people. But when the Roman general saw
him entering actually on foot, with fillet cast off, and prostrate on
the earth doing obeisance, he felt an impulse of pity; so starting up
hastily he raised him, bound on the headband and seated him upon a chair
close by, and he encouraged him, telling him among other things that he
had not lost the kingdom of Armenia but had gained the friendship of the
Romans. By these words Pompey restored his spirits, and then invited him
to dinner.

[-53-] But the son, who sat on the other side of Pompey, did not rise at
the approach of his father nor greet him in any other way, and
furthermore, though invited to dinner, did not present himself.
Wherefore he incurred Pompey's most cordial hatred. Now, on the
following day, when the Roman heard the recitals of both, he restored to
the elder all his ancestral domain. What he had acquired later, to be
sure,--these were chiefly portions of Cappadocia and Syria, as well as
Phoenicia and the large Sophanenian tract bordering on Armenia,--he took
away, and demanded money of him besides. To the younger he assigned
Sophanene only. And inasmuch as this was where the treasures were, the
young man began a dispute about them, and not gaining his point--for
Pompey had no other source from which to obtain the sums agreed upon--he
became vexed and planned to escape by flight.

Pompey, being informed of this beforehand, kept the youth under
surveillance without bonds and sent to those who were guarding the
money, bidding them give it all to his father. But they would not obey,
stating that it was necessary for the young man, to whom the country was
now held to belong, to give them this command. Then Pompey sent him to
the forts. He, finding them all locked up, approached close and
reluctantly ordered that they be opened. When the keepers obeyed as
little as before, asserting that he issued the command not of his own
free will, but under compulsion, Pompey was irritated and put Tigranes
in chains.

Thus the elder secured the treasures, and Pompey passed the winter in
the land of Anaitis and near the river Cyraus, after dividing his army
into three portions. From Tigranes he received plenty of everything and
far more money than had been agreed upon. For this reason especially he
shortly afterward enrolled the king among his friends and allies and
brought the latter's son to Rome under guard.

[-54-] The quiet of his winter quarters, however, was not unbroken.
Oroeses, king of the Albanians dwelling beyond the Cyrnus, made an
expedition against them just at the time of the Saturnalia. He was
impelled partly by a wish to do a favor to Tigranes the younger, who was
a friend of his, but mostly by the fear that the Romans would invade
Albania, and he cherished the idea that if he should fall upon them in
the winter, when they were not expecting hostilities and were not
encamped in one body, he would surely achieve some success. Oroeses
himself descended upon Metellus Celer, in whose charge Tigranes was, and
sent others against Pompey and against Lucius Flaccus, the commander of
the third division, in order that all might be thrown into confusion at
once, and so not assist one another.

In spite of all, he accomplished nothing at any point. Celer vigorously
repulsed Grosses. Flaccus, being unable to preserve the whole circuit of
the ditch intact by reason of its size, constructed another within it.
This fixed in his opponents' minds the impression that he was afraid,
and so he enticed them within an outer ditch, where by a charge upon
them when they were not looking for it he slaughtered many in close
conflict and many in flight. Meanwhile Pompey, having received advance
information of the attempt which the barbarians had made on the rest, to
their surprise encountered beforehand the detachment that was proceeding
against him, conquered it, and at once hurried on just as he was against
Oroeses. The latter, indeed, he did not overtake; for Oroeses, after the
repulse by Celer, had fled on being informed of the failures of the
rest; many of the Albanians, however, he overwhelmed near the crossing
of the Cyrnus and killed. After this he made a truce at their request.
For although on general principles he was extremely anxious to make a
return invasion of their country, he was glad to postpone the war
because of the winter.



The following is contained in the Thirty-seventh of Dio's Rome: I

How Pompey fought against the Asiatic Iberians (chapters 1-7).

How Pompey annexed Pontus to Bithynia: how Pompey brought Syria and
Phoenicia under his sway (chapters 8, 9).

How Mithridates died (chapters 10-14).

About the Jews (chapters 15-19).

How Pompey after settling affairs in Asia returned to Rome (chapters

About Cicero and Catiline and their transactions (chapters 24-42).

About Caesar and Pompey and Crassus and their sworn fellowship (chapters

Duration of time, six years, in which there were the following
magistrates, here enumerated:

L. Aurelius M.F. Cotta, L. Manlius L.F. (B.C. 65 == a.u. 689.)

L. Caesar, C. Marcius C.F. Figulus. (B.C. 64 == a.u. 690.)

M. Tullius M.F. Cicero, C. Antonius M.F. (B.C. 63 == a.u. 691.)

Decimus Iunius M.F. Silanus, L. Licinius L.F. Murena. (B.C. 62 == a.
u. 692.)

M. Pupius M.F. Piso, M. Valerius M.F. Messala Niger (B.C. 61 == a.u.

L. Afranius A.F., C. Caecilius C.F. Celer. (B.C. 60 == a.u. 694.)


[B.C. 65 (_a.u._ 689)]

[-1-] The following year after these exploits and in the consulship of
Lucius Cotta and Lucius Torquatus, he engaged in warfare against both
the Albanians and the Iberians. With the latter of these he was
compelled to become embroiled quite contrary to his plan. The Iberians
dwell on both sides of the Cyrnus, adjoining on the one hand the
Albanians and on the other the Armenians. Arthoces, their king, fearing
that Pompey would direct his steps against him, too, sent envoys to him
on a pretence of peace, but prepared to attack the invader at a time
when, feeling secure, he should be therefore off his guard. Pompey
learning of this betimes was in good season in making an incursion into
the territory of Arthoces, ere the latter had made ready sufficiently or
had occupied the pass on the frontier, which was well nigh impregnable.
He marched on, indeed, to the city called Acropolis,[11] before Arthoces
ascertained that he was at hand. At that moment he was right at the
narrowest point, where the Cyrnus[12] flows on the one side and the
Caucasus extends on the other, and had fortified the mountain in order
to guard the pass. Arthoces, panic-stricken, had no chance to array his
forces, but crossed the river, burning down the bridge; and those within
the wall, in view of his flight and a defeat they had sustained in
battle, surrendered. Pompey made himself master of the thoroughfares,
left a garrison in charge of them, and advancing from that point
subjugated all the territory within the river boundary. [-2-] But when
he was on the point of crossing the Cyrnus also, Arthoces sent to him
requesting peace and promising voluntarily to furnish him control of the
bridge and provisions. Both of these promises the king fulfilled as if
he intended to come to terms, but terrified when he saw his adversary
already across he fled away to the Pelorus, another river that flowed
through his dominions. The man that he might have hindered from crossing
he avoided by running away after drawing him on.

Pompey, seeing this, pursued after, overtook and conquered him. By a
charge he got into close quarters with the enemy's bowmen before they
could show their skill, and in the briefest time routed them. When
things took this turn, Arthoces crossed the Pelorus and fled, burning
the bridge over that stream too: of the rest some were killed in
hand-to-hand fights, and some while fording the river on foot. Many,
also, scattered through the woods, survived for a few days by shooting
from the trees, which were exceedingly tall, but soon the trees were cut
down at the base and they also were destroyed. Under these conditions
Arthoces again sent a herald to Pompey for peace, and forwarded gifts.
These the other accepted, in order that the king in his hope to secure a
truce might not proceed farther in any direction; but he did not agree
to grant peace till the petitioner should first convey to him his
children as hostages. Thus Pompey waited for a time until in the course
of the summer the Pelorus became fordable in places, and then the Romans
crossed over; their passage was especially easy as they met no one to
hinder them. Then Arthoces sent his children to him and finally
concluded a treaty.

[-3-] Pompey, learning directly that the Phasis was not distant, decided
to descend along its course to Colchis and thence to march to the
Bosphorus against Mithridates. He advanced as planned, traversing the
territory of the Colchians and their neighbors, using persuasion in some
quarters and inspiring fear in others. There perceiving that his route
on land led through many unknown and hostile tribes, and that the sea
journey was rather difficult on account of the country's having no
harbors and on account of the people inhabiting the region, he ordered
the fleet to blockade Mithridates so as to watch that the latter did not
set sail in any direction and to cut off his importation of provisions,
while he himself turned his steps against the Albanians. He took what
was not the shortest path, but went inland to Armenia in order that such
action, coupled with the truce, might enable him to find them not
expecting him. And the Cyrnus, too, he crossed at a point where it had
become passable because of summer, ordering the cavalry to cross down
stream with the baggage animals next, and the infantry afterward. The
object was that the horses should break the violence of the current with
their bodies, and if even so any one of the pack animals should be swept
off its feet it might collide with the men going alongside and not be
carried further down. From there he marched to Cambyse without suffering
any injury at the hands of the enemy, but through the influence of the
scorching heat and consequent thirst he in common with, the whole army
experienced hardship in his progress even at night over the greater part
of the road. Their guides, being some of the captives, did not lead them
by the most suitable route, and the river was of no advantage to them;
for the water, of which they drank great quantities, was very cold and
made a number sick.

When no resistance to them developed at this place either, they marched
on to the Abas, carrying supplies of water only; everything else they
received by the free gift of the natives, and for this reason they
committed no depredations.

[-4-] After they had already got across the river, Oroeses was announced
as coming up. Pompey was anxious to lead him into conflict somehow
before he should find out the number of the Romans, for fear that when
he learned it he might retreat. Accordingly he marshaled his cavalry
first, giving them notice beforehand what they should do; and keeping
the rest behind them in a kneeling position and covered with their
shields he made these last remain motionless, so that Oroeses should not
ascertain their presence until he came close up. Thereupon the latter,
in contempt for the cavalry who were alone, as he thought, joined battle
with them, and when after a little they purposely turned to flight,
pursued them at full speed. Then the infantry suddenly rising stood
apart to furnish their own men a safe means of escape through their
midst, but received the enemy, who were heedlessly bent on pursuit, and
surrounded a number of them. So these soldiers cut down those caught
inside the circle; and the cavalry, some of whom went round on the right
and some on the other side of them, assailed in the rear those outside.
Each of these bodies slaughtered many in that place and others who had
fled into the woods they burned to death, and they cried out, "Ha! ha!
the Saturnalia!" with reference to the attack made at that festival by
the Albanians.

[-5-] After accomplishing this and overrunning the country, Pompey
granted peace to the Albanians, and on the arrival of heralds concluded
a truce with some of the other tribes that dwell along the Caucasus as
far as the Caspian Sea, where the mountains, which begin at the Pontus,
come to an end. Phraates likewise sent to him, wishing to renew the
covenants. The sight of Pompey's onward rush and the fact that his
lieutenants were also subjugating the rest of Armenia and that region of
Pontus and that Grabinius had advanced across the Euphrates as far as
the Tigris filled him with fear of them, and he was anxious to confirm
the agreement. He effected nothing, however. Pompey, in view of the
existing conditions and the hopes which they inspired, held him in
contempt and replied scornfully to the ambassadors, among other things
demanding back the territory of Corduene, concerning which Phraates was
having a dispute with Tigranes. When the envoys made no answer, inasmuch
as they had received no instructions on this point, he wrote a few words
to Phraates, but instead of waiting for any answer suddenly despatched
Afranius into the territory, and having occupied it without a battle
gave it to Tigranes.

[B.C. 65]

Afranius, returning through Mesopotamia to Syria, contrary to the
agreement made with the Parthian, wandered from the way and endured much
evil by reason of the winter and lack of supplies. Indeed, he would have
perished, had not Carraeans, colonists of the Macedonians who dwelt
somewhere in that vicinity, supported him and helped him forward.

[-6-] This was the treatment that Pompey[13]out of the fullness of his
power accorded Phraates, thereby indicating very clearly to those
desiring personal profit that everything depends on armed force, and he
who is victorious by its aid wins inevitably the right to lay down what
laws he pleases. Furthermore, he did violence to the title of that
ruler, in which Phraates delighted before all the world and before the
Romans themselves, and by which the latter had always addressed him. For
whereas he was called "king of kings," Pompey clipped off the phrase "of
kings" and wrote "to the king," with merely that direction, in spite of
the fact that he had given this title to the captive Tigranes even
contrary to their custom when he celebrated the triumph over him in
Rome. Phraates, consequently, although he feared and was subservient to
him, was vexed at this, feeling that he had been deprived of the
kingdom; and he sent ambassadors, reproaching him with all the injustice
he had done, and forbade him to cross the Euphrates.

[-7-] As Pompey made no reasonable reply, the other immediately
instituted a campaign in the spring against Tigranes, being accompanied
by the latter's son, to whom he had given his daughter in marriage. This
was in the consulship Of Lucius Caesar and Gaius Figulus.

[B.C. 64 (_a.u._ 690)]

In the first battle Phraates was beaten, but later was victorious in his
turn. And when Tigranes invoked the assistance of Pompey, who was in
Syria, he sent ambassadors to the Roman commander, making many
accusations and throwing out numerous hints against the Romans, so that
Pompey was both ashamed and alarmed. As a result the latter lent no aid
to Tigranes and took no hostile measures against Phraates, giving as an
excuse that no such expedition had been assigned to him and that
Mithridates was still in arms. He declared himself satisfied with what
had been effected and said that he feared in striving for additional
results he might meet with reverses, as had Lucullus.

Such was the trend of his philosophy: he maintained that to make
personal gains was outrageous and to aim at the possessions of others
unjust, as soon as he was no longer able to use them. Through dread of
the forces of the Parthian, therefore, and fear of the unsettled state
of affairs he did not take up this war in spite of many solicitations.
As for the barbarians' complaints, he disparaged them, offering no
counter-argument, but asserting that the dispute which the prince had
with Tigranes concerned some boundaries, and that three men should
decide the case for them. These he actually sent, and they were enrolled
as arbitrators by the two kings, who then settled all their mutual
complaints. For Tigranes was angry at not having obtained assistance,
and Phraates wished the Armenian ruler to survive, so that in case of
need he might some day have him as an ally against the Romans. They both
understood well that whichever of them should conquer the other would
simply help on matters for the Romans and would himself become easier
for them to subdue. For these reasons, then, they were reconciled.

Pompey passed the winter in Aspis, winning over the sections that were
still resisting, and took Symphorion,[14] a fort which Stratonice
betrayed to him. She was the wife of Mithridates, and in anger toward
him because she had been abandoned sent the garrison out pretendedly to
collect supplies and let the Romans in, although her child was with ...
[15] ...

[B.C. 65 (_a.u._ 689)]

[-8-] ... [not (?)] for this alone in his aedileship he (C. Jul. Caesar)
received praise, but because he had also conducted both the Roman and
the Megalesian games on the most expensive scale and had further
arranged contests of gladiators in the most magnificent manner. Of the
sums expended on them a portion was raised by him in conjunction with
his colleague Marcus Bibulus, but another portion by him privately; and
his individual expenditure on the spectacles so much surpassed, that he
appropriated to himself the glory for them, and was thought to have
taken the whole cost on himself. Even Bibulus joked about it saying that
he had suffered the same fate as Pollux: for, although that hero
possessed a temple in common with his brother Castor, it was named only
for the latter.

[-9-] All this contributed to the Romans' joy, but they were quite
disturbed at the portents of that year. On the Capitol many statues were
melted by thunderbolts, among other images one of Jupiter, set upon a
pillar, and a likeness of the she-wolf with Romulus and Remus, mounted
on a pedestal, fell down; also the letters of the tablets on which the
laws were inscribed ran together and became indistinct. Accordingly, on
the advice of the soothsayers, they offered many expiatory sacrifices
and voted that a larger statue of Jupiter should be set up, looking
toward the east and the Forum, in order that the conspiracies by which
they were distraught might dissolve.

Such were the occurrences of that year. The censors also became involved
in a dispute regarding the dwellers beyond the Po: one thought it wise
to admit them to citizenship, and another not; so they did not perform
any of their duties, but resigned their office. Their successors, too,
did nothing in the following year, for the reason that the tribunes
hindered them in regard to the list of the senate, in fear lest they
themselves should be dropped from that assembly. Meantime all those who
were resident aliens in Rome, except those who dwelt in what is now
Italy, were banished on the motion of one Gaius Papius, a tribune,
because they were getting to be in the majority and were not thought fit
persons to dwell among the citizens.

[B.C. 64(_a.u._ 690)]

[-10-] In the ensuing year, with Figulus and Lucius Caesar in office,
notable events were few, but worthy of remembrance in view of the
contradictions in human affairs. For the man[16] who had slain Lucretius
at the instance of Sulla and another[17] who had murdered many of the
persons proscribed by him were tried for the slaughter and
punished,--Julius Caesar being most instrumental in bringing this about.
Thus the changes of affairs often render those once thoroughly powerful
exceedingly weak. But though this matter went contrary to the
expectation of the majority, they were equally surprised that Catiline,
who had incurred guilt on those same grounds (for he, too, had put out
of the way many similar persons), was acquitted. The result was that he
became far worse and for that reason also perished.

[B.C. 63 (_a.u._ 691)]

For, when Marcus Cicero was consul with Gaius Antonius, and Mithridates
no longer inflicted any injury upon the Romans but had destroyed his own
self, Catiline undertook to set up a new government, and by banding
together the allies against the state threw the people into fear of a
mighty conflict. Now each of these occurrences came about as follows.

[-11-] Mithridates himself did not give way under his disasters, but
trusting more in his will than in his power, especially while Pompey was
lingering in Syria, planned to reach the Ister through Scythia, and from
that point to invade Italy. As he was by nature given to great projects
and had experienced many failures and many successes, he regarded
nothing as beyond his ability to venture or to hope. If he missed he
preferred to perish conjointly with his kingdom, with pride unblemished,
rather than to live deprived of it in inglorious humility. On this idea
he grew strong. For in proportion as he wasted away through weakness of
body, the more steadfast did he grow in strength of mind, so that he
even revived the infirmity of the former by the reasonings of the

The rest who were his associates, as the position of the Romans kept
getting always more secure and that of Mithridates weaker,--among other
things the greatest earthquake that had ever occurred destroyed many of
their cities--became estranged; the military also mutinied and unknown
persons kidnapped some of his children, whom they conveyed to Pompey.

[-12-] Thereupon he detected and punished some; others he chastised from
mere suspicion: no one could any longer trust him; of his remaining
children, even, he put to death one of whom he grew suspicious. Seeing
this, one of his sons, Pharnaces, impelled at once by fear of the king
and an expectation that he would get the kingdom from the Romans, being
now of man's estate, plotted against him. He was detected, for many both
openly and secretly meddled constantly with all he was doing; and if the
body-guard had had even the slightest good will toward their aged
sovereign, the conspirator would immediately have met his just deserts.
As it was, Mithridates, who had proved himself most wise in all matters
pertaining to a king, did not recognize the fact that neither arms nor
multitude of subjects are of value to any one, without friendship on the
part of the people; nay, the more dependents a person has (unless he
holds them faithful to him) the greater burden they are to him. At any
rate Pharnaces, followed both by the men he had made ready in advance,
and by those whom his father had sent to arrest him (and these he very
easily made his own) hastened straight on against the father himself.
The old king was in Panticapaeum when he learned this, and sent ahead
some soldiers against his son, saying that he himself would soon follow
them. These also Pharnaces quickly diverted from their purpose, inasmuch
as they did not love Mithridates either, and after receiving the
voluntary submission of the city, put to death his father, who had fled
for refuge into the palace.

[-13-] The latter had tried to make way with himself, and after removing
beforehand by poison his wives and remaining children, he had swallowed
what was left to the last drop. Neither by that means nor by the sword
was he able to induce death with his own hands. For the poison, although
deadly, did not prevail over him, since he had inured his constitution
to it, taking every day precautionary antidotes in large doses: and the
force of the sword blow was lessened on account of the weakness of his
hand, caused by his age and the interference of those around him, and on
account of the effect of the poison, of whatever sort it was. When,
therefore, he failed to pour out his life through his own efforts and
seemed to linger beyond the proper time, those whom he had sent against
his son fell upon him and hastened his end with swords and spear points.
Mithridates, who had experienced the most varied and tremendous fortune,
found the close of his life equally far from being simple. He desired to
die against his will, and though anxious to kill himself was not able;
but first by poison and then by the sword at once became a suicide and
was slain by his foes.

[-14-] Pharnaces embalmed his body and sent it to Pompey as a proof of
what had been done, and surrendered himself and his dominions. The Roman
showed Mithridates no indignity, on the contrary commanding that he be
buried among the graves of his ancestors; for, feeling that his
hostility had been extinguished with his life, he indulged in no vain
anger against the dead body. The kingdom of Bosporus, however, he
granted to Pharnaces as the wages of his bloody deed, and enrolled him
among his friends and allies.

After the death of Mithridates all portions of his dominions, except a
few, were subjugated. Garrisons which at that date were still holding a
few fortifications outside of Bosporus, did not immediately come to
terms,--not so much because they were minded to resist him as because
they were afraid that some persons might confiscate beforehand the money
which they were guarding and lay the blame upon them: hence they waited,
wishing to exhibit everything to Pompey himself.[-15-] When, then, the
regions in that quarter had been subdued, and Phraates remained quiet,
while Syria and Phoenicia were in a state of calm, the conqueror turned
against Aretas. The latter was king of the Arabians, now slaves to the
Romans as far as the Red Sea. Previously he had done the greatest injury
to Syria and had on this account become involved in a battle with the
Romans who were defending it: he was defeated by them, but nevertheless
continued hostile at that time. Upon him and his neighbors Pompey made a
descent, overcame them without effort, and handed them over to a
garrison. Thence he proceeded against Palestine, in Syria, because its
inhabitants were harming Phoenicia. Their rulers were two brothers,
Hyrcanus and Aristobulus, who[18] were themselves quarreling, as it
chanced, and stirring up the cities concerning the priesthood (for so
they called their kingdom) of their God, whoever he is.

Pompey immediately brought to his side without a battle Hyrcanus, who
had no force worthy of note, and by confining Aristobulus in a certain
spot compelled him to come to terms. And when he would surrender neither
money nor garrison,[19] Pompey threw him into prison. After this he more
easily overcame the rest, but in the siege of Jerusalem found trouble.
[-16-]Most of the city he took without exertion, as he was received by
the party of Hyrcanus, but the temple itself, which the others had
occupied in advance, he did not capture without labor. It was on high
ground and strengthened by its own defences, and if they had continued
defending it on all days alike, he could not have got possession of it.
As it was, they made an exception of what were called the days of
Saturn,[20] and by doing no work at all on them offered the Romans an
opportunity in this vacant interval to batter down the wall. The latter
on learning this superstition of theirs, made no serious attempt the
rest of the time, but on those days, when they came around in
succession, assaulted most vigorously. Thus the holders were captured on
the day of Saturn, making no defence, and all the money was plundered.
The kingdom was given to Hyrcanus, and Aristobulus was carried back to

This was the course of events at that time in Palestine. That is the
name that has been applied from of old to the whole race, which extends
from Phoenicia to Egypt along the inner sea. They have also another name
that has been acquired,--i.e., the country has been called Judaea, and
the people themselves Jews. [-17-]I do not know from what source this
title was first given them, but it applies also to all the rest of
mankind, although of foreign race, who cherish their customs. This
nation exists among the Romans also, and though often diminished has
increased to a very great extent and has won its way to the right of
freedom in its observances. They are distinguished from the rest of
mankind in every detail of life, so to speak, and especially by the fact
that they do not honor any of the usual gods, but reverence mightily one
particular divinity. They never had any statue in Jerusalem itself, but
believing him to be inexpressible, invisible, they worship him in the
most extravagant fashion on earth. They built to him a temple that was
extremely large and beautiful, except in so far as it was void and
roofless, and dedicated the day called the day of Saturn, on which,
among many other most peculiar actions, they undertake no serious

Now as for him, who he is and why he has been so honored, and how they
got their superstition about accounts have been given by many, no one of
which pertains to this history.

[-18-] The custom of referring the days to the seven stars called
planets was established by the Egyptians, but has spread to all men,
though it was instituted comparatively not long ago. At any rate the
original Greeks in no case understood it, so far as I am aware. But
since it is becoming quite habitual to all the rest of mankind and to
the Romans themselves, and this is to them already in a way an
hereditary possession, I wish to make a few brief statements about it,
telling how and in what way it has been so arranged.

I have heard two accounts, in general not difficult of comprehension,
and containing some one's theories. If one apply the so-called
"principle of the tetrachord" (which is believed to constitute the basis
of music) in order to these stars, by which the whole universe of heaven
is divided into regular intervals, as each one of them revolves, and
beginning at the outer orbit assigned to Saturn, then omitting the next
two name the master of the fourth, and after him passing over two others
reach the seventh, and in the return cycle approach them by the names of
the days, one will find all the days to be in a kind of musical
connection with the arrangement of the heavens.

[-19-] This is one of the accounts: the other is as follows. If you
begin at the first one to count the hours of the day and of the night,
assigning the first to Saturn, the next to Jupiter, the third to Mars,
the fourth to Sol,[21] the fifth to Venus, the sixth to Mercury, and the
seventh to Luna,[20] according to the order of the cycles the Egyptians
observe in their system, and if you repeat the process, covering thus
the twenty-four hours, you will find that the first hour of the
following day comes to the sun. And if you carry on the operation
throughout the next twenty-four hours, by the same method as outlined
above, you will consecrate the first hour of the third day to the moon,
and if you proceed similarly through the rest, each day will receive the
god that appertains to it. This, then, is the tradition.[22]

[-20-] Pompey, when he had accomplished what has been related, went
again to the Pontus and after taking charge of the forts returned to
Asia and thence to Greece and Italy. He had won many battles; had
brought into subjection many potentates and kings, some by going to war
with them and some by treaty, he had colonized eight cities, had created
many lands and sources of revenue for the Romans, and had established
and organized most of the nations in the continent of Asia then
belonging to them with their own laws and governments, so that even to
this day they use the laws that he laid down.

But although these achievements were great and had been equaled by no
earlier Roman, one might ascribe them both to good fortune and to his
fellow campaigners. The performance for which credit particularly
attaches to Pompey himself, which is forever worthy of admiration, I
will now proceed to set forth.

[-21-] He had enormous power both on sea and on land; he had supplied
himself with vast sums of money from captives; he had made friends with
numerous potentates and kings; and he had kept practically all the
communities which he ruled well disposed through benefits bestowed. And
although by these means he might have occupied Italy and have taken
possession of the whole Roman sway, since the majority would have
accepted him voluntarily, and if any had resisted they would certainly
have capitulated through weakness, yet he did not choose to do this.
Instead, as soon as he had crossed to Brundusium he gave up of his own
accord all his powers, without waiting for any vote to be passed
concerning the matter by the senate or the people, not troubling himself
even about using them in the course of the triumph. For since he
understood that the careers of Marius and Sulla were held in abomination
by all mankind, he did not wish to cause them any fear even for a few
days that they should undergo any similar experiences. Consequently he
did not so much as acquire any name from his exploits, although he might
have taken many.

As for the triumphal celebration--I mean that one which is considered
the chief,--although according to most ancient precedents it is not
lawful that it be held without those who aided the victory, he
nevertheless accepted it, as it had been voted to him. He conducted the
procession in honor of all his wars at once, including in it many
trophies beautifully arrayed to represent each of his deeds, even the
smallest: and after them all came one huge one, arrayed in costly
fashion and bearing an inscription to the effect that it was a World
Trophy. He did not, however, add any other title to his name, but was
satisfied with that of Magnus only, which, as is known, he had gained
even before these achievements. Nor did he get any other extravagant
privilege awarded him: only he did use once such as had been voted him
in absence. These were that he should wear the laurel wreath on the
occasion of all meetings at any time, and should be clad in the robe of
office at all of them, as well as in the triumphal garb at the
horse-races. They were granted him chiefly through the cooeperation of
Caesar, and contrary to the judgment of Marcus Cato.

[-22-] Regarding the former a statement has already been made as to who
he was, and it has been related[23] that he cultivated the common
people, and while generally striving to depose Pompey from his high
position, still made a friend of him in cases where he was sure of
pleasing the populace and gaining influence himself. But this Cato
belonged to the family of the Porcii and emulated the great Cato, except
that he had enjoyed a better Greek education than the former. He
promoted assiduously the interests of the multitude and admired no one
man, being excessively devoted to the common weal; suspicious of
sovereignty, he hated everything that had grown above its fellows, but
loved everything mediocre through pity for its weakness. He showed
himself a passionate adherent of the populace as did no one else, and
indulged in outspokenness beyond the limits of propriety, even when it
involved danger. All this he did not with a view to power or glory or
any honor, but solely for the sake of a life of independence, free from
the dictation of tyrants. Such was the nature of the man who now for the
first time came forward before the people and opposed the measures under
consideration, not out of any hostility to Pompey, but because they
transgressed time-honored customs.

[-23-] These honors, then, they granted Pompey in his absence, but none
when he had come home, though they would certainly have added others,
had he wished it; upon some other men, indeed, who had been less
successful than he, they often bestowed many extravagant distinctions.
That they did so unwillingly, however, is clear.

Pompey knew well that all the gifts granted by the common people to
those who have any influence and are in positions of authority contain
the suggestion, no matter how willingly they are voted, of having been
granted through force applied out of the resources of the strong. He
knew that such honors bring no glory to those who receive them, because
it is believed that they were obtained not from willing donors, but
under compulsion, and not from good will, but as a result of flattery.
Hence he did not permit any one to propose any measure whatever. This
course he declared far better than to reject what has been voted to one.
The latter method brought hatred for the high position that led to such
measures being passed, and connoted arrogance and insolence in not
accepting what is granted by your superiors or at all events by your
peers. By the former method you possessed in very fact the democratic
name and behavior both, not indicated but existent. For having received
almost all the offices and positions of command contrary to ancient
precedent, he refused to accept all such others as were destined to
bring him only envy and hatred even from the very givers, without
enabling him to benefit any one or be benefited.

[-24-] All this took place in course of time. Temporarily the Romans had
a respite from war for the remainder of the year, so that they even held
the so-called _augurium salutis_ after a long interval. This is a kind
of augury, which consists of an enquiry whether the god allows them to
request welfare for the State, as if it were unholy even to make a
request for it until the action received sanction. That day of the year
was observed on which no army went out to war, or was taking defensive
measures against any, or was fighting a battle. For this reason, amid
the constant perils (especially those of a civil nature), it was not
held. In general it was very difficult for them to secure exactly the
day which should be free from all those disturbances, and furthermore it
was most ridiculous, when they were voluntarily causing one another
unspeakable woes through factional conflicts and were destined to suffer
ills whether they were beaten or victorious, that they should still ask
safety from the divine power.

[-25-] Notwithstanding, it was in some way possible at that time for the
divination to be held, but it did not prove to be pure. Some strange
birds flew up and made the augury of no effect. Other unlucky omens,
too, developed. Many thunderbolts fell from a clear sky, the earth was
mightily shaken, and human apparitions were visible in many places, and
in the West flashes ran up into heaven, so that any one, even an
ignorant fellow, was bound to know in advance what was signified by
them. For the tribunes united with Antonius, the consul, who was much
like themselves in character, and some one of them supported for office
the children of those exiled by Sulla, while a second was for granting
to Publius Paetus and to Cornelius Sulla, who had been convicted with
him, the right to be members of the senate and to hold office. Another
made a motion for a cancellation of debts, and for allotments of land to
be made both in Italy and in the subject territory. These motions were
taken in hand betimes by Cicero and those who were of the same mind as
he, and were quashed before any action resulted from them.

[-26-] Titus Labienus, however, by indicting Gaius Rabirius for the
murder of Saturninus caused them the greatest disorder. For Saturninus
had been killed some thirty-six years earlier, and the steps taken
against him by the consuls of the period had been at the direction of
the senate: as a result of the present action the senate was likely to
lose authority over its votes. Consequently the whole system of
government was stirred up. Rabirius did not admit the murder, but denied
it. The tribunes were eager to overthrow completely the power and the
reputation of the senate and were preparing for themselves in advance
authority to do whatever they pleased. For the calling to account of
acts that had received the approval of the senate and had been committed
so many years before tended to give immunity to those who were
undertaking anything similar, and curtailed the punishments they could
inflict. Now the senate in general thought it shocking for a man of
senatorial rank who was guilty of no crime and now well advanced in
years to perish, and were all the more enraged because the dignity of
the government was being attacked, and control of affairs was being
entrusted to the vilest men.

[-27-] Hence arose turbulent exhibitions of partisanship and contentions
about the court, the one party demanding that it should not be convened
and the other that it should sit. When the latter party won, because of
Caesar and some others, there was strife again regarding the trial. Caesar
himself was judge with Lucius Caesar; for the charge against Rabirius was
not a simple one, but the so-called _perduellio-:--and they condemned
him, although they had not been chosen according to precedent by the
people, but by the praetor himself, which was not permitted. Rabirius
yielded, and would certainly have been convicted before the popular
court also, had not Metellus Celer who was an augur and praetor hindered
it. For since nothing else would make them heed him and they were
unconcerned that the trial had been held in a manner contrary to custom,
he ran up to Janiculum before they had cast any vote whatever, and
pulled down the military signal, so that it was no longer lawful for
them to reach a decision.

[-28-] Now this matter of the signal is about as follows. In old times
there were many enemies dwelling near the city, and the Romans
(according to the account) fearing that while they were holding an
assembly foes might occupy Janiculum to attack the city decided that not
all should vote at once, but that some men under arms should by turns
always guard that spot. So they garrisoned it as long as the assembly
lasted, but when it was about to be dissolved, the signal was pulled
down and the guards departed. Regularly no business was any longer
allowed to be transacted unless the post were garrisoned. It was
permissible only in the case of assemblies which collected by companies,
for these were outside the wall and all who had arms were obliged to
attend them. Even to this day it is done from religious grounds.

So on that occasion, when the signal was pulled down, the assembly was
dissolved and Rabirius saved. Labienus, indeed, had the right to go to
court again, but he did not do this.

[-29-] As for Catiline, his ruin was accomplished in the following way
and for the reasons which I shall narrate. He had been seeking the
consulship even then, and contriving every conceivable way to get
appointed, when the senate decreed, chiefly at the instance of Cicero,
that a banishment of ten years should be added by law to the penalties
imposed for bribery. Catiline thought, as was doubtless true, that this
ruling had been made on his account, and planned, by collecting a small
band, to slay Cicero and some other foremost men on the very day of the
election, in order that he might immediately be chosen consul. This
project he was unable, however, to carry out. Cicero learned of the plot
beforehand, informed the senate of it, and delivered a long accusation
against him. Being unsuccessful, however, in persuading them to vote any
of the measures he asked--this was because his announcement was not
regarded as credible and he was suspected of having uttered false
charges against the men on account of personal enmity--Cicero became
frightened, seeing that he had given Catiline additional provocation,
and he did not venture to enter the assembly alone, as had been his
custom, but he took his friends along prepared to defend him if any
danger threatened; and he wore for his own safety and because of their
hostility a breastplate beneath his clothing, which he would purposely
uncover. For this reason and because anyway some report had been spread
of a plot against him, the populace was furiously angry and the fellow
conspirators of Catiline through fear of him became quiet. [-30-] In
this way new consuls were chosen, and Catiline no longer directed his
plot in secret or against Cicero and his adherents only, but against the
whole commonwealth. He assembled from Rome itself the lowest characters
and such as were always eager for a revolution and as many as possible
of the allies, by promising them cancellation of debts, redistribution
of lands, and everything else by which he was most likely to allure
them. Upon the foremost and most powerful of them (of whose number was
Antonius the consul) he imposed the obligation of taking the oath in an
unholy manner. He sacrificed a boy, and after administering the oath
over his entrails, tasted the inwards in company with the rest. Those
who cooeperated with him most were: In Rome, the consul and Publius
Lentulus, who, after his consulship, had been expelled from the senate
(he was now acting as praetor, in order to gain senatorial rank again);
at Faesulae, where the men of his party were collecting, one Gaius
Mallius, who was most experienced in military matters (he had served
with Sulla's centurions) and the greatest possible spendthrift.
Everything that he had gained at that epoch, although a vast sum, he had
consumed by evil practices, and was eager for other similar exploits.
Afranius, returning through Mesopotamia to Syria, contrary to the
agreement made with the Parthian, [B.C. 65] wandered from the way and
endured much evil by reason of the winter and lack of supplies. Indeed,
he would have perished, had not Carraeans, colonists of the Macedonians
who dwelt somewhere in that vicinity, supported him and helped him

[-31-] While they were making these preparations, information came to
Cicero, first of what was occurring in the city, through some letters
which did not indicate the writer but were given to Crassus and some
other influential men. On their publication a decree was passed that a
state of disorder existed and that a search should be made for those
responsible for it. Next came the news from Etruria, whereupon they
voted to the consuls in addition the guardianship of the city and of all
its interests, as they had been accustomed to have: for to this decree
was subjoined the command that they should take care that no injury
happen to the republic. When this had been done and a garrison stationed
at many points, there was no further sign of revolution in the city,
insomuch that Cicero was even falsely charged with sycophancy; but
messages from the Etruscans confirmed the accusation, and thereupon he
prepared an indictment for violence against Catiline.

[-32-] The latter at first accepted it with entire readiness as if
supported by a good conscience, and made ready for the trial, even
offering to surrender himself to Cicero so that the latter could watch
and see that he did not escape anywhere. As Cicero, however, refused to
take charge of him, he voluntarily took up his residence at the house of
Metellus the praetor, in order that he might be as free as possible from
the suspicion of promoting a revolution until he should gain some
additional strength from the conspirators in that very town. But he made
no headway at all, because Antonius through fear shrank back and
Lentulus was anything but an energetic sort of person. Accordingly, he
gave them notice to assemble by night in a particular house, where he
met them without Metellus's knowledge and upbraided them for their
timorousness and weakness. Next he set forth in detail how great
punishments they would suffer if they were detected and how many
desirable things they would obtain if successful, and by means so
encouraged and incited them, that two men promised to rush into Cicero's
house at daybreak and murder him there.

[-33-] Information of this, too, was given in advance: for Cicero, being
a man of influence, had through his speeches by either conciliation or
intimidation gained many followers, who reported such occurrences to
him: and the senate voted that Catiline should leave the city. The
latter was glad enough to withdraw on this excuse and went to Faesulae,
where he prepared an out and out war. He took the consular name and
dress and proceeded to organize the men previously collected by Mallius,
meanwhile gaining accessions first of freemen, and second of slaves.

The Romans consequently condemned him for violence, ordered Antonius to
the war (being ignorant, of course, of their conspiracy), and themselves
changed their apparel. The crisis kept Cicero likewise where he was. The
government of Macedonia had fallen to him by lot, but he did not set out
for that country,--retiring in favor of his colleague on account of his
occupation in the prosecutions,--nor for Hither Gaul, which he had
obtained in its place, on account of the immediate situation. Instead,
he charged himself with the protection of the city, but sent Metellus to
Gaul to prevent Catiline from alienating it.

[-34-] It was extremely well for the Romans that he remained. For
Lentulus made preparations to burn down the city and commit wholesale
slaughter with the aid of his fellow conspirators and of Allobroges, who
chanced to be there on an embassy: these also he persuaded to join
him[24] and the others implicated in the revolution in their
undertaking. The consul learning of their purpose arrested the men sent
to carry it out and brought them with their letter into the
senate-chamber, where, by granting them immunity, he proved all the
conspiracy. As a consequence Lentulus was forced by the senate to resign
the praetorship, and was kept under guard along with the others arrested
while the remnant of the society was being sought for. These measures
pleased the populace equally: especially so, when, during a speech of
Cicero's on the subject, the statue of Jupiter was set up on the Capitol
at the very time of the assembly, and by instructions of the soothsayers
was placed so as to face the East and the Forum. For these prophets had
decided that some conspiracy would be brought to light by the erection
of the statue, and when its setting up coincided with the time of the
conspirators' arrest, the people magnified the divine power and were the
more angry at those charged with the disturbance.

[-35-] A report went abroad that Crassus was also among them, and one of
the men arrested, too, gave this information; still, not many believed
it. Some, in the first place, thought they had no business to suspect
him of such a thing; others regarded it as a trumped-up charge emanating
from the guilty parties, in order that the latter might thereby get some
help from him, because he possessed the greatest influence. And if it
did seem credible to any persons, at least they did not see fit to ruin
a man who was foremost among them and to disquiet the city still more.
Consequently this charge fell through utterly.

Now many slaves, and freemen as well, some through fear and others for
pity of Lentulus and the rest, made preparations to deliver them all

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