Immagini della pagina
PDF
ePub

preciated the advantage and influence of distinctively honorary titles. Of those suggested by various persons, Quirinus' and 'Romulus', though not wholly displeasing, nevertheless had odious associations with royalty and were for that reason rejected ; cf. Dio LIII. 16. 7. No such objection could possibly attach to the new title “Augustus ', expressive of sanctity and rich in hallowed associations. Cf. Ov., Fast. I. 609-613 :

Sancta vocant augusta patres : augusta vocantur

Templa sacerdotum rite dicata manu;
Huius et augurium dependet origine verbi,

Et quodcumque sua Iuppiter auget ope.

Augeat imperium nostri ducis, augeat annos. Dio (LIII. 16. 8) says : “He was given the surname Augustus as being something more than the common run of men : for everything that is held in the highest honor and sanctity is given the appellation "august”.'

10. testamento: cf. Jul. 83. 2. maioris avunculi : great-great uncle (proaviae frater), which does not express the relationship intended ; here used for magnus avunculus, .great uncle', 'grandmother's brother'. Julius Caesar's sister Julia was the mother of Atia, who was the mother of Augustus ; see stemma in note to page 47, line 26. Maior avunculus occurs again in this sense in Claud. 3. 2, avunculus maior Augustus. Cf. line 24, below, avunculum; page 85, line 31, avunculi; page 101, line 25, avunculus Caesar.

11. (L.) Munati Planci sententia : on the motion of (L.) Munatius Plancus, consul with M. Lepidus in 42 s.c. and adherent of Antony till 32 B.C., when he transferred his allegiance to Octavian. Horace addresses him in the seventh Ode of the first book. See Drumann, Gesch. Roms, IV.2 223 ff. quibusdam : their names are not known.

13. conditorem urbis : as founder of the empire, second founder of the city. praevaluisset : sc. sententia Planci; (the proposal) had carried. Praevalere is Silver Latin for plus valere, pollere; cf. Plin., Ep. II. 11. 6, Quae sententia non praevaluit modo; Tac., Hist. II. 65, Auctoritas Cluvii praevaluit, ut puniri ultro libertum suum Vitellius iuberet. ut . . . vocaretur : explains the subject of praevaluisset.

14. ampliore : more honorable, more distinguished; cf. Flor., Epit. II. 34. 66, sed sanctius et reverentius visum est nomen Augusti.

15. religiosa et in quibus : a favorite use of adjective and relative clause ; see Introd. II. § 10. a and note to page 47, line 5. augurato : after taking the auguries, by augural rites; an absolute use of the participle frequent in Livy : cf. Liv. I. 18. 6, sicut Romulus augurato

.

urbe condenda regnum adeptus est. Similar is the use of auspicato in Cic., de Div. I. 2. 3: Principio huius urbis parens Romulus non solum auspicato urbem condidisse, sed ipse etiam optimus augur fuisse traditur. Such an ablative approximates the adverbial usage seen on page 7, line 22, festinato; page 89, line 7, secreto. See Introd. II. § 9. a. (4).

16. dicantur : subjunctive mood as stating the cause assigned in support of the motion of Plancus. ab auctu : the derivation that connects augustus with augeo is probably correct; see the Ovid passage quoted in note to line 9, above. Auctus (= incrementum), “increase (in dignity)', is rare till the post-Augustan period.

17. gestu gustuve : movement or feeding. The alliteration is accidental. The reference is probably to the movements of the sacred chickens and the manner in which they took their food. On such auguries see Greenidge, Rom. Publ. Life, page 164 et passim. Such a derivation fails to explain the radical part of the word, aug-. Ennius : in Annales, frg. 389 (Baehr., P. L. M.2), quoted by Varro, R. R. III. 1. 2. The hexameter verse preceding this one is Septingenti sunt paulo plus aut minus anni.

18. augurio : by augury; i.e. by the flight of birds or the feeding of the sacred chickens. Augur contains the root of avis. Possibly augustus, itself a word of religious import, through popular etymology came to be associated with the same root because of its frequent use with such words of ritual. Both the idea of augury' and that of increase ', as seen from the Ovid passage (in note to line 9, above), were at least in the Roman mind in connection with this word. Note the paronomasia in augusto augurio.

Chapter 8. Early Honors. Studies at Apollonia. Caesar's Heir.

Periods of his Power

20. Quadrimus : i.e. after September 23, 59 B.C. As seen in the note to page 47, line 26, Octavius died while returning from Macedonia towards the close of 59 B.C. or early in 58 B.C. Duodecimum annum agens : in his twelfth year; before September 23, 51 B.C.

21. aviam Juliam : see note to line 10, above. The young Octavius's naturally weak health was not improved, Drumann thinks (Gesch. Roms, IV.2 261), by the excessive care bestowed upon him by Julia and Atia. defunctam, etc. : delivered a funeral oration to the assembled people in honor of. Our author uses morte defungi or defungi alone as equal to mori; see page 45, line 28, neque sua morte defunctus est; page 106, line 1, defunctum (sc. esse) quempiam. Defunctus, in particular, was used for mortuus; cf. page 3, line 12, defunctas; page 81, line 26, defunctae ; Tib. 6. 4, 51. 2. In the same way Julius pronounced the eulogy over his deceased wife and aunt e more pro rostris (page 3, line 13) and Tiberius defunctum patrem pro rostris laudavit (Tib. 6. 4). For similar use of pro contione see page 43, line 6, and page 54, line 28. Quadriennio post: he assumed the white robe of manhood in his sixteenth year, October 18, 48 B.C., four years after the laudatio funebris of his grandmother. See C. I. L. X. 8375.

22. militaribus donis : some of these are enumerated in Aug. 25. 3. Among the honorary insignia of war were the hasta pura, the lance without the iron point; verillum, ensign; or such decorations as coronae (crowns), armillae (bracelets), torques (necklaces), phalerae (metal disks or bosses for the breast), fibulae (buckles) and cornicula (ornaments for the helmet). These were conferred in the presence of the assembled troops and might be worn at reviews and other public ceremonies. triumpho Caesaris Africano : in 46 B.C., upon his return from Africa ; see Jul. 37. 1 and note to page 19, line 1. Thapsus had been fought in April of the same year. The African triumph was officially a triumph over Juba and the Moors, not over Scipio, for the same reason that Octavian after Actium triumphed over Cleopatra and Egypt, not over Antony.

23. quanquam expers belli : albeit having no part in the war; not because of his years, as Suetonius states, but on account of his weak health and at his mother's solicitation : see Nic. Dam., Vit. Aug. 6; Drumann, Gesch. Roms, IV.2 263. Quamquam is often thus used with adjective and participle ; cf. page 52, line 4, quamquam invalidus atque aeger; page 92, line 8, quamquam . neglegens; and see Introd. II. § 6. m. For the case of belli see Introd. II. § 4. a.

24. Profectum mox: in December, 46 B.C. The battle of Munda occurred the following March, but Julius did not return to Rome till September, 45 B.C. avunculum : sc. magnum or maiorem ; object of demeruit. See note to line 10, above. in Hispanias : to the Spains ; i.e. the two provinces of Spain. The Englishmen's “to the States' may be compared ; so the Netherlands ', “the Jerseys ', “the Brazils'. Dio (XLIII. 41. 3) also states that Octavius was his uncle's companion on this expedition, but makes no mention of his shipwreck.

25. Pompei liberos : Gnaeus was killed, soon after Munda (March 17), on April 11, 45 B.C. Sextus was to be an important figure in politics and civil warfare for a decade longer. He was finally murdered in 35 B.C. ; see note to page 54, line 18. vixdum firmus, etc. : although he had scarcely recovered his strength as yet from a severe illness; cf. Introd. II. 8 5. a. (1). Nicolas of Damascus states (Vit. Aug. 9 f.) that this illness was caused by too close attention to his duties in connection with the “Greek’ theater intrusted to him by his uncle, but that his uncle left orders for Octavius to follow him after his recovery. From earliest years Augustus was subject to attacks which caused grave anxiety to his family and, in later years, throughout the empire. Two notable illnesses were a protracted one at Tarraco during his Spanish campaign of 27–25 B.C., and one in Rome, two years later, in his eleventh consulship, 23 B.C., when his recovery was despaired of. On the latter occasion he summoned a council of his chief advisers to his bed chamber and handed over to Piso, his colleague in the consulship, the rationarium imperii (page 62, line 7) and gave his signet ring to Agrippa. See note to page 62, line 3.

26. infestas : = infestatas, beset by the enemy, exposed to their attacks. paucissimis comitibus : Nicolas of Damascus (Vit. Aug. 10) states that Octavius chose only the fleetest and most active of his slaves to accompany him.

27. subsecutus : following hard after (him), but not meeting with his uncle, probably, before the battle of Munda, March 17. Subordination by means of participles is here noteworthy : profectum, naufragio .. facto, subsecutus, approbata ... indole. See Introd. II. $ 9. a and II. 8 9. a. (2). magno opere demeruit : put under great obligations, greatly endeared himself to his uncle. Demereo (more often, demereor) in this sense, with an accusative of the person (avunculum), as here, is post-Augustan ; cf. Claud. 40. 3 ; Oth. 4. 2 ; Vit. 2. 5; Vesp. 2. 3.

28. approbata ... indole : quickly winning approval, also, for the native qualities of his character. As often happens in Suetonius, an additional statement of importance is appended by means of an ablative absolute. super itineris industriam : over and above the energy manifested 'en route’; cf. Claud. 26. 2, Quam cum comperisset super cetera flagitia atque dedecora C. Silio etiam nupsisse, and see Introd. II. § 5. r. (2). (c). Itineris is a notable instance of the objective genitive ; see Introd. II. § 4. d.

30. Caesare ... destinante : as the crowning achievement of his military career, Caesar was planning a campaign against the Parthians, a constant menace on the eastern frontier. His intention was to subdue the Dacians, or Getae, before proceeding to Asia. The expedition was said to have the sanction of the Sibylline books, which stated that the Parthians could be conquered only by a king ; cf. Plut., Caes. LX. Hence arose the report that L. Cotta would propose that Caesar should have the title of king conferred on him ; cf. Jul. 79. 3. post receptas Hispanias : a construction becoming increasingly frequent from Livy's time.

31. Apolloniam : in Illyricum, directly opposite Brundisium. While not a university center like Athens and Rhodes, Greek teachers may have resorted thither as a place most accessible from Italy. Octavius seems to have taken his teachers with him ; cf. Aug. 89. 1. His main object was doubtless the training in military matters which would fit him for the Parthian campaign ; cf. Vell. II. 59, 4: Et patratis bellis civilibus ad erudiendam liberalibus diciplinis singularis indolem iuvenis Apolloniam eum in studia miserat, mox belli Getici ac deinde Parthici habiturus commilitonem.

Page 50. l. studiis vacavit: devoted himself to his studies, consisting quite as much in the training in arms as in the arts, no doubt, since he was to be one of the two magistri equitum on Caesar's Parthian campaign. In his retinue at this time were Agrippa and Maecenas, his privy councillors of the future. Cf. Dio XLIII. 51. 7 ; Nic. Dam., Vit. Aug. 31. Utque ... comperit: according to Appian (B. C. III. 9. 32), it was during the sixth month of his stay at Apollonia that Augustus learned of his uncle's assassination. The first news came in a letter from his mother. Only upon his landing at Lupiae, in the vicinity of Brundisium, did he learn of Caesar's will and his own adoption. Cf. App., B. C. III. 10 f. occisum : sc. esse; Introd. II. § 10. d. (1).

2. legiones imploraret : such an appeal to the legions quartered in Macedonia awaiting the Parthian campaign was advised by Agrippa and Salvidienus Rufus ; cf. Vell. II. 59. 5.

4. urbe repetita : the time of his entrance into the city cannot be exactly determined, but it was probably at the end of April or beginning of May, 44 B.C., in the absence of Antony, who was then consul. Velleius (II. 59. 6) thus describes his return to Rome : Cui adventanti Romam inmanis amicorum occurrit frequentia, et cum intraret urbem solis orbis super caput eius curvatus aequaliter rotundatusque in colorem arcus velut coronam tanti mox viri capiti imponens conspectus est. dubitante. dissuadente : chiastic order ; see Introd. II. $ 10. h.

5. (L.) Marcio Philippo : son of the orator, and consul in 56 B.C. The date of his marriage to Atia is not known. Apparently, he took lively interest in the young Octavius. Nicolas of Damascus says (Vit.

« IndietroContinua »