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A.D. 368.] VIRTUES OF RUFINUS 451
§ 1. AFTER these transactions had been thus settled to the delight both of the prince and of the soldiers, but a few days intervened; and then Avitianus, who had been deputy, accused Mamertinus, the prefect of the praetorium, of peculation, on his return from the city whither he had gone to correct some abuses. 2. And in consequence of this accusation he was replaced by Rufinus, a man accomplished in every respect, who had attained the dignity of an honourable old age, though it is true that he never let slip any opportunity of making money when he thought he could do so secretly. 3. He now availed himself of his access to the emperor to obtain permission for Orfitus, who had been prefect of the city, but who was now banished, to receive back his property which had been confiscated, and return home. 4. And although Valentinian was a man of undisguised ferocity, he nevertheless, at the beginning of his reign, in order to lessen the opinion of his cruelty, took all possible pains to restrain the fierce impetuosity of his disposition. But this defect increasing gradually, from having been checked for some time, presently broke out more unrestrained to the ruin of many persons; and his severity was increased by the vehemence of his anger. For wise men define passion as a lasting ulcer of the mind, and sometimes an incurable one, usually engendered from a weakness of the intellect; and they have a plausible argument for asserting this in the fact that people in bad health are more passionate than those who are well; women, than men; old men, than youths; and people in bad circum. stances than the prosperous. 5. About this time, among the deaths of many persons
of low degree, that of Diocles, who had previously been
a treasurer of Illyricum, was especially remaiked; the emperor having had him burnt alive for some very slight offence, as was also the execution of Diodorus, who had previously had an honourable employment in the provinces, and also that of three officers of the vicar prefect
of Italy, who were all put to death with great cruelty because the count of Italy had complained to the emperor that Diodorus had, though in a constitutional manner, implored the aid of the law against him; and that the officers, by command of the judge, served a summons on him as he was setting out on a journey, commanding him to answer to the action according to law. And the Christians at Milan to this day cherish their memory, and _ca.ll the place where they were buried, the tomb of the innocents.
6. Afterwards, in the affair of a certain Pannonian, named Maxentius, on account of the execution of a sentence very properly commanded by the judge to be carried out immediately, he ordered all the magistrates of these towns to be put to death, when Eupraxius, who at that time was quaestor, interposed, saying, “ Be more sparing, O most pious of emperors, for those whom you command to be put to death as criminals, the Christian religion honours as martyrs, that is as persons acceptable to the deity.”
7. And the prefect Florentius, imitating the salutary boldness of Eupraxius, when he heard that the emperor was in a similar manner very angry about some trifling and pardonable matter, and that he had ordered the execution of three of the magistrates in each of several cities, said to him, “ Arid what is to be done if any town has not got so many magistrates? It will be necessary to suspend the execution there till there are a sufiicient number for the purpose.” .
8. And besides this cruel conduct there was another circumstance horrible even to speak of, that if any one came before him protesting against being judged by a powerful enemy, and requiring that some other judge might hear his case, he always refused it ; and however just the arguments of the man might be, he remitted his cause to the decision of the very judge whom he feared. And there was another very bad thing much spoken of; namely, that when it was urged that any debtor was in such absolute want as to be unable to pay anything, he used to pronounce sentence
of death on him. . _ _ 9. But some princes do these and other similar actions
with the more lofty arrogance, because they never. allow their friends any opportunity of Betting them fight 111 8117
A.B. 368.] 101STRESS OF BRITAIN. 453
mistake they make, either in a plan or in its execution; while they terrify their enemies by the greatness of their power. There can be no question of mistake or error raised before men who consider whatever they choose to do to be in itself the greatest of virtues.
§ 1. WALENTINIAN having left Amiens, and being on his way to Treves in great haste, received the disastrous intelligence that Britain was reduced by the ravages of the united barbarians to the lowest extremity of distress; that Nectaridus, the count of the sea-coast, had been slain in battle, and the duke Fullofaudes had been taken prisoner by the enemy in an ambuscade. 2. This news struck him with great consternation, and he immediately sent Severus, the count of the domestic guards, to put an end to all these disasters if he could find a desirable opportunity. Severus was soon recalled, and Jovinus, who then went to that country, sent forward Provertuides with great expedition to ask for the aid of a powerful army; for they both affirmed that the imminence of the danger required such a reinforcement. 3. Last of all, on account of the many formidable reports which a continual stream of messengers brought from that island, Theodosius was appointed to proceed thither, and ordered to make great haste. He was an officer already distinguished for his prowess in war, and having collected a numerous force of cavalry and infantry, he proceeded to assume the command in full confidence. 4. And since when I was compiling my account of the acts of the emperor Constantine, I explained as well as I could the movement of the sea in those parts at its ebb and flow, and the situation of Britain, I look upon it as superfluous to return to what has been once described; as the Ulysses of Homer when among the Phaeacians hesitated to repeat his adventures by reason of the sufferings they brought to mind. 5. It will be sufficient here to mention that at that time the Picts, who were divided into two nations, the Dicalidones and the Vecturiones, and likewise the Attacotti, a very warlike people, and the Scots were all roving over
diiferent parts of the country and committing great ravages.‘ \Vhile the Franks and the Saxons who are on the frontiersof the Gauls were ravaging their country wherever they could effect an entrance by sea or land, plundering and burning, and murdering all the prisoners they could take.
6. To put a stop to these evils, if a favourable fortune should aiiord an opportunity, the new and energetic general repaired to that island situated at the extreme corner of the earth; and when he had reached the coast of Boulogne, which is separated from the opposite coast by a very narrow strait of the sea, which there rises and falls in a strange manner, being raised by violent tides, and then again sinking to a perfect level like a plain, without doing any injury to the sailors. From Boulogne he crossed the strait in a leisurely manner, and reached Richborough, a very tranquil station on the opposite coast.
7. And when the Batavi, and Heruli, and the Jovian and Victorian legions who followed from the same place, had also arrived, he then, relying on their number and power, landed and marched towards Londinium, an ancient town which has since been named Augusta; and dividing his army into several detachments, he attacked the predatory and straggling bands of the enemy who were loaded with the weight of their plunder, and having speedily routed them while driving prisoners in chains and cattle before them, he deprived them of their booty which they had carried off from these miserable tributaries of Rome.
8. To whom he restored the whole exceptasmall portion which he allotted to his own weary soldiers; and then
joyful and triumphant he made his entry into the city
which had just before been overwhelmed by disasters, but was now suddenly re-established almost before it could have hoped for deliverance.
9. This success encouraged him to deeds of greater daring, and after consideringwhat counsels might be the safest, he hesitated, being full of doubts as to the future, and convinced by the confession of his prisoners and the information given him by deserters. that so vast arnultitude, composed of various nations, all incredibly savage, could only be vanquished by secret stratagems and
unexpected attacks. 10. Then, by the publication of several edicts, in which
Am. am-1.] run BARBARIANS OVERRUN AFRICA. 455
he promised them impunity, he invited deserters and others who were straggling about the country on furlough,to repair to his camp. At this summons numbers came in, and he, though eager to advance, being detained by anxious cares, requested to have Civilis sent to him, to govern Britain, with the rank of pro-prefect, a man of quick temper, but just and upright; and he asked at the same time for Dulcitius, a general eminent for his military skill.
§1. Trims were the events which occurred in Britain. But in another quarter, from the very beginning of Valen-i tinian’s reign, Africa had been overrun by the fury of the barbarians, intent on bloodshed and rapine, which they sought to carry on by audacious incursions. Their licen-. tiousness was encouraged by the indolence and general covetousness of the soldiers, and especially by the conduct of Count Romanus.
2. Who, foreseeing what was likely to happen, and being very skilful in transferring to others the odium which he himself deserved, was detested by men in general for the savageness of his temper, and also because it seemed as if his object was to outrun even our enemies in ravaging the provinces. He greatly relied on his relationship to liemigius, at that time master of the ofiices, who sent all kinds of false and confused statements of the condition of the country, so that the emperor, cautious and wary as he plumed himself on being, was long kept in ignorance of the terrible sufferings of the Africans.
3. I will explain with great diligence the complete series of all the transactions which took place in those regions, the death of Ruricius the governor, and of his lieutenants, and all the other mournful events which took place, when the proper opportunity arrives.
4. And since we are able here to speak freely, let us openly say what we think, that this emperor was the first of all our princes who raised the arrogance of the soldiers to so great a height, to the great injury of the state, ly increasing their rank, dignity, and riches. And Qwhich was a lamentable thing, both on public and private