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what they have omitted. Diodorus Siculus commences his work by stating the obligations of mankind to historians :-Τούς τας κοινές ιστορίας σραγματευσαμένους μεγάλας χάριτας απονέμειν δίκαιον σανίας ανθρώπους, ότι τους ιδίοις σόνοις ωφελήσαι τον κοινόν βίον εφιλόλιμήθησαν- .
If the general historian be so great a benefactor, those who have left records of their genuine mind, who have detailed in familiar correspondence the views and the policy of their contemporaries, whether friendly or hostile, the accidental conference in the forum, or the unguarded table-talk at the banquet, are entitled to a large portion of our thanks. The sunshine of history is too often obscured by mists, and the day closes prematurely: when the darkness is thus superinduced, memoirs and correspondence become the gas-lights of times past.
To understand the condition of Rome at the time of Cicero's birth, it is necessary to have some general idea of the government from its first institution by Romulus. Cicero himself celebrates the Roman constitution as the most perfect of all governments; and in his theory we may nearly trace the beau idéal of our own:-“ Statuo esse optime constitutam rempublicam, quæ ex tribus generibus illis, regali, optimo, et populari confusa modice, nec puniendo irritet animum immanem ac ferum, nec omnia prætermittendo, licentia cives deteriores reddat.” — Fragm. de Rep. 2.
Their king was elected by the people, as the head of the republic, to be their leader in war, the guardian of the laws in peace. The senate was his council, chosen also by the people, by whose advice he was obliged to govern himself in all his measures. The sovereignty was lodged in the body of the citizens, or the general society, whose prerogative it was to enact laws, create magistrates, declare war, and receive appeals in all cases, both from the king and the senate. Some writers have denied this right of appeal to the people. Let us see what Cicero says on the subject:-“Nam cum a primo urbis ortu, regiis institutis, partim etiam legibus, auspicia, cæremoniæ, comitia, provocationes, patrum consilium, equitum peditumque descriptio, tota res militaris, divinitus esset constituta; tum progressio admirabilis, incredibilisque cursus ad omnem excellentiam factus est, dominatu regio republica liberata.” — Tusc. Quæst. lib. iv. cap. 1.
Seneca quotes a passage from his Treatise on the Republic, in confirmation of this doctrine :-“ Cum Ciceronis libros de Rep. prehendit hinc philologus aliquis, hinc grammaticus, hinc philosophiæ deditus: alius alio curam sibi mittit. . . . Præterea notat, eum quem nos dictatorem dicimus, et in historiis ita nominari legimus, apud antiquos magistrum populi vocatum.... Provocationem ad populum etiam a regibus fuisse. Id ita in Pontificialibus libris aliqui putant, et Fenestella.” -Senec.
108. Valerius Maximus gives an instance confirmed by Livy :-“ M. Horatius, interfectæ sororis crimine a Tullo rege damnatus, ad populum provecto judicio, absolutus est.”—Val. Max. lib. viii. cap. 1.
By the revolution in the government, their old constitution was not changed, but restored to its primitive state. The name of king was abolished, but the power was retained. The difference was, that instead of choosing a single person for life, they chose two annually under the designation of consuls, invested with all the prerogatives and ensigns of royalty, and presiding as the kings had done, in all the public business of the common: wealth. To convince the citizens that nothing was sought by the change but to secure their common liberty, and to re-establish their sovereignty on a more solid basis, P. Valerius Poplicola, one of the first consuls, made it capital for any man to exercise magistracy in Rome without their special appoint1ment. "Ετερον δε, εν ώ γέγραπται, εάν τις άρχων Ρωμαίων τινα αποκλείνειν, ή μαςιγούν, ή ζημιούν εις χρήμαια θέλη, εξείναι το ιδιώτη προκαλείσθαι την αρχήν έπί τήν του δήμου κρίσιν, σάσχειν δε εν τω μελαξύ χρόνω μηδέν υπό της αρχής, έως αν ο δήμος υπέρ αυτού ψηφίσηται. . Dionys. Hal. lib. v.
The conduct of Poplicola, when suspected of aspiring to the sovereignty, was consistent with these his enactments. Livy says, “ Hæc dicta vulgo creditaque quum indignitate angerent consulis animum, vocato ad consilium populo, submissis fascibus in concionem escendit." This lowering of the maces became the constant practice with all succeeding consuls: besides which, Poplicola, on this occasion, took the axes out of the fascés, nor were they ever afterwards carried by the consuls within the city. Cicero himself thus describes the parties in the city :-“ Duo genera semper in hac civitate fuerunt eorum, qui versari in republica, atque in ea se excellentius gerere studuerunt : quibus ex generibus alteri se populares, alteri optimates et haberi et esse voluerunt. Qui ea, quæ faciebant, quæque dicebant, multitudini jucunda esse volebant, populares : qui autem ita se gerebant, ut sua consilia optimo cuique probarent, optimates habebantur." - Pro Sext. cap. 45.
These contending factions were naturally jealous of each other, and desirous of extending their own power. The nobles, or patricians, composing the
senate, were the most immediate gainers by the change. With the consuls at their head, they were now the first movers and the efficient organs of all state measures. This gave them the preponderance in the balance against the people on a majority of occasions, notwithstanding the provisions made for popular controul. Within the short space of sixteen years, the senate became so insolent and oppressive, as to drive the plebeians to their celebrated . secession into the sacred mount. They refused to return till they had extorted permission to create a new order of magistrates, of their own body, with the consent and sanction of the opposite party. Έδόκει ταύτα σάσι, και γράφεται προς αυτού και των συναρχόνΤων όδε ο νόμος έςί: Δήμαρχος άκονlα, ώσπερ ένα πολλών, μηδείς μηδέν αναγκαζέτω δράν, μηδε μαςιγούτω, μηδέ επιταττέτο
μαςγούν ετέρω, μηδε αποκλιννύτω, μηδε αποκλείνειν κελευέτω. εαν δε τις των απαγορευμένων τι σοιήση, εξάγιςος έξω, και τα χρήμαια αυτού Δήμητρος Ιεράς και ο κλείνας τινά των ταύτα ειργασμένων, φόνου καθαρός έςα, και ένα μη εις το λοιπόν τώ δήμω εξουσία γένηται καλαπαύσαι τόνδε τον νόμον, αλλ' εις πάνlα τον χρόνον ακίνητος διαμείνη, πάντας ετάχθη Ρωμαίους ομόσαι καθ' ιερών, ή μην χρήσεσθαι τω νόμω και αυτούς και εγγόνους τον αεί χρόνον.Dion. Hal. lib. vi.
The name of Marcus, like all first names among the Romans, was properly personal. It was imposed with ceremonies in some degree analogous with those of baptism in Christian countries. “Est etiam Nundina Romanorum Dea, à nono die nascentium nuncupata, qui lustricus dicitur. Est autem dies lustricus, quo infantes lustrantur, et nomen accipiunt.” – Macrobii Saturnaliorum, lib. i.
The child was on this occasion carried to the temple, by the friends and relations of the family, bellum. Nullam aciem, nullum prælium timueris. Uni tibi, et cum singulis res erit. Quum rex, simul ira infensus, periculoque conterritus, circumdari ignes minitabundus juberet, nisi expromeret propere, quas insidiarum sibi minas per ambages jaceret: ‘En tibi, inquit, «ut sentias, quam vile corpus sit iis, qui magnam gloriam vident :' dextramque accenso ad sacrificium foculo injicit. quam quum velut alienato ab sensu torreret animo; prope adtonitus miraculo rex, quum ab sede sua prosiluisset, amoverique ab altaribus juvenem jussisset, • Tu vero abi, inquit, in te magis, quam in me hostilia ausus.'"
For the purpose of fixing the admiration on the proper point of this story, and at the same time to do Livy justice, it must be remarked, that the fortitude here displayed, and that of the passive kind, is the part of Scævola's conduct proposed as an example, and the only part to be adopted in spirit, by those who have occasion to show their resolution, under circumstances less shocking and incredible. I say incredible; and it is remarkable that Dionysius has omitted this part of the romantic scene, described by Livy with so much ostentation. He simply imputes to Mucius the politic contrivance of inventing the story of the three hundred youths to save himself. His character in the Greek historian does indeed descend from its heroics. But according to Livy, whose narrative is best known and most popular, Porsena finishes his address by saying, “I dismiss you untouched and unhurt; and discharge you from the penalties which by the laws of war I have a right to inflict.”. Mucius felt inclined to make some return for this act of favour, and spoke to him thus: “Since I