« IndietroContinua »
Tappan Presh. Ass.
THE text of this edition of Sallust is that of C. G. Zumpt, Berlin, 1848, as given in "Chambers' Educational Course"-with this difference only, that the orthography in a few words of antiquated form has been changed in conformity with the usage of other Latin writers. The few forms of ancient orthography still remaining, differ so little from the ordinary forms, that no change has been thought necessary; and they serve in some degree to preserve that air of antiquity which the author aimed at in his writings.
Though many editions of Sallust have been published, the text can hardly be regarded even yet as fully settled. The number of manuscripts is great, and their discrepancies in many places considerable. Moreover, great liberties have been taken by some editors in making alterations, often on slight grounds, and sometimes on mere conjecture, rendering it difficult to know in some places what Sallust really did write. The latest critical editors of Sallust are Gerlach (Bassel, revised edition, 1832), and Kritz (Leipzig, 1828). Both these declare against the arbitrary proceedings of Corte, and yet they differ very often in their texts from each other. "Between these two," says Zumpt, "stands the edition of the learned J. C. Orelli (Zurich, 1840), whose text forms the basis of this [Zumpt's] edition. But besides abandoning his antiquated orthography, and restoring that which is adopted in most editions of the Latin Classics, we have felt obliged in many instances to give up Orelli's reading, and to follow the authority of the best manuscripts, especially the Codex Leidensis (marked L. in Havercamp's edition)." The licentiousness and crime that prevailed in Rome in the days of Catiline, and stained his character, were so gross, that the allusions to them in this history, though few, could not fail to be offensive --perhaps injurious—and for this reason are silently omitted.
Though in point of time, the Jugurthine war took place nearly 60 years before the conspiracy of Catiline, the history of the latter is here, as in most editions, placed first in order-not merely because it was
first written, but because it is more genera..y read than the former. Besides, in a course of classical reading, it should always be read before the Orations of Cicero against Catiline; and where only one of these histories is read, this one should be, and generally will be preferred.
Passages in the form of oblique narration (§ 141, R. vi. Expl.), as in Prof. Andrews' edition, are indicated by single quotation marks; direct quotations, by double quotation marks. The method of distinguishing adverbs, and the ablative singular of the first declension by accents, has not been used, as, at this stage of his studies, the student is supposed to have such a knowledge of syntax as to be able to make these distinctions for himself, without such artificial aid.
In preparing the notes and illustrations appended, the editor has availed himself of all the assistance furnished by the various editions in use in this country, and of some foreign editions also, especially that of Zumpt above referred to; and, as this author is usually read in an early stage of the Academical course, greater fulness in the notes has been deemed proper. Care has been taken, however, not to supersede diligence and effort on the part of the learner, but to encourage both, by giving the assistance necessary to render the study of this author interesting and profitable, and to relieve the teacher, in some degree, by supplying just such information as the intelligent student would likely seek to obtain from him. The translations given are, in general, sufficiently literal to indicate the construction; sometimes a strictly literal translation is annexed. The references to the Editor's Latin Grammar, for the explanation of peculiar or more difficult constructions and forms of speech, are numerous. They have the usual section mark (§) prefixed, and will be easily understood. References from one part of the book to another for explanation, are common, and made by indicating the chapter in Roman numerals, and if to a note, by annex ing in figures the number of the note, to the number of the chapter; thus, Chap. I., 2 (p. 141), is a reference to note 2, under Chap. I., found p. 139.
Fronting the title page is a map of Numidia, from the Edinburgh edition, which will be useful to point out the localities mentioned in the Jugurthine war. No pains or expense has been spared to render the work accurate and attractive; and the style in which it is produced by the printer and publishers, will compare favorably with that of any similar publications of the presen' day.
APRIL, 21, 1852.
SALLUST has generally been considered as the first among the Romans who merited the title of historian. This celebrated writer was born at Amiternum, in the territory of the Sabines (to the northwest of Rome), B. C. 86. He was educated at Rome, and in his early youth appears to have been desirous to devote himself to literary pursuits. But it was not easy for one residing in the capital to escape the contagious desire of military or political distinction. At the age of twenty-seven, he obtained the situation of Quæstor, which entitled him to a seat in the senate; and about six years afterwards he was elected tribune of the people. While in this office, he attached himself to Cæsar, whose fortunes he continued to follow; and in particular, bore a share in the expedition to Africa, where the scattered remains of Pompey's party had united. That region being finally subdued, Sallust was He remained only a year
left by Cæsar as Prætor of Numidia. in his government, but, during that period, he enriched himself by despoiling the province. On his return to Rome, he was accused by the Numidians whom he plundered, but escaped with impunity by means of the protection of Cæsar, and was quietly permitted to betake himself to a luxurious retirement with his ill-gotten wealth. He chose for his favorite retreat a villa at Tibur, which had belonged to Cæsar; and he also built a magnificent palace in the suburbs of Rome, surrounded by delightful pleasure grounds, which were afterwards well known and celebrated as the gardens of Sallust. In this retirement,
* This introductory sketch of the life and writings of Sallust, is taken chiefly from Dunlop's History of Roman Literature. Vol. ii., pp. 81-94.
Sallust passed the close of his life, dividing his time between literary avocations and the society of his friends, among whom he numbered Lucullus, Messala, and Cornelius Nepos. He died at the age of fiftyone, 35 years B. C.
Of the character of Sallust, very different opinions have been formed, and the sources of information on the subject, which can now be reached, are not the most reliable. That he was a man of loose morals, is evident; and also that he rapaciously plundered his province, like other Roman governors of the day. But, considering who were his friends, and the studies he pursued, it seems highly improbable that he indulged in that excessive libertinism which has been attributed to him, on the erroneous supposition that he was the Sallust mentioned by Horace, in the first book of his Satires.
The works of Sallust which have come down to us entire, are the History of the Conspiracy of Catiline, and the History of the Jugurthine War. Besides these, he was the author of a Civil and Military History of the Republic, in five books, embracing a period of thirteen years, from the resignation of the Dictatorship by Sulla, till the promulgation of the Manilian law, by which Pompey was invested with authority equal to that which Sulla had relinquished. It is much to be regretted that of this work-probably designed to connect the termination of the Jugurthine war with the breaking out of the Conspiracy of Catilineonly fragments now remain.
The first work of Sallust was the History of the Conspiracy of Catiline, which broke out B. C. 62. At that time Sallust had attained the age of twenty-two, and was an eye-witness of the whole proceeding. He had therefore sufficient opportunity of ascertaining and recording, with accuracy and truth, the origin, progress, and termination, of the Conspiracy. The facts detailed in the Orations of Cicero, though differing in some minute particulars, coincide in every thing of importance, and highly contribute to illustrate and verify the work of the historian. But still, living, as he did, in the midst of these scenes of political strife, it could hardly be expected that he should not feel perhaps too much interested in the fortunes of individuals and parties to fulfil the duties of an impartial writer; and that this was so, to some extent, the feeble and apparently reluctant commendation which he bestows on Cicero, then, as well as now, acknowledged to be the principal actor in detecting and frustrating the Conspiracy, is abundant evidence. Although not an eye-witness to the war with Jugurtha, which took place nearly fifty years before the Conspiracy of Catiline,
yet his situation as Prætor of Numidia, which had been the scene of this war, afforded him an opportunity of collecting materials, and procuring information, while his distance in point of time from the men and parties of that period, was favorable for obtaining just and comprehensive views of the exciting events of the war, and for embodying them in a faithful and impartial narrative.
Sallust, like some other historians of antiquity, evidently regarded an elegant style as one of the chief merits of an historical work. His own style, on which he took so much pains, was carefully formed on that of Thucydides, whose manner of writing was in a great measure original, and, till the time of Sallust, peculiar to himself. The Roman has wonderfully succeeded in imitating the vigor and conciseness of the Greek historian, and infusing into his composition something of that dignity and austerity which distinguishes the works of his great model. This imitation, however, consists more in the rapid and compressed manner in which his narrative is conducted, than in the structure of his sentences-in brevity of idea, rather than of language. For while Thucydides frequently employs long and involved periods, Sallust is abrupt and sententious, and is generally considered as having carried this sort of brevity to excess. The use of copulatives, for the purpose of uniting clauses or sentences, is in a great measure rejected; antiquated forms of expression, and words considered nearly obsolete, are sometimes employed, so that on the whole there is too much appearance of study, and the want of that ease and natural gracefulness so pleasing in the productions of some other writers.
In the delineation of character, Sallust particularly excels. Some of the characters drawn by him have been regarded in all ages as master-pieces of their kind. The portraits of Catiline, Jugurtha, and Marius, convey to us vivid ideas of their minds and persons, and pre pare us to anticipate, in some degree, how each will act in the situation in which he is placed. In Catiline, we behold a man of a bold, profligate, untamable spirit; of infinite resources, unwearied application, and prevailing address. We see, as it were, before us the deadly paleness of his countenance, his ghastly eye, his unequal, troubled step, and the distraction of his whole appearance, strongly indicating the reckless horror of a guilty conscience. The introductory sketch of the genius and manners of Jugurtha, is no less able and spirited than that of Catiline. We behold him serving under Scipio, at Numantia, as brave, accomplished, and enterprising; but imbued with an ambition which, being under no control of principle, hurried him into its worst