Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

proceeded to the city of Rheims, where he had ordered his whole army, carrying*. ... to assemble, and there to awaithịs. presence. The army at Rheims was under the command of Marcellus, the successor of Ursicinus ; and Ursicinus himself was ordered to remain there till the termination of the expedition.

9. Again Julian took counsel, and after many opinions of different purport had been delivered, it was determined to attack the host of the Allemanni in the neighbourhood of Dieuse ; and to that quarter the army now marched in dense order, and with more than usual alacrity.

10. And because the weather, being damp and misty, prevented even what was near from being seen, the enemy, availing themselves of their knowledge of the country, came by an oblique road upon the Cæsar's rear, and attacked two legions while they were piling their arms; and they would almost have destroyed them if the uproar which suddenly arose had not brought the auxiliary troops of the allies to their support.

11. From this time forth Julian, thinking it impossible to find any roads or any rivers free from ambuscades, proceeded with consummate prudence and caution ; qualities which above all others in great generals usually bring safety and success to armies.

12. Hearing therefore that Strasburg, Brumat, Saverne, Spiers, Worms, and Mayence, were all in the hands of the barbarians, who were established in their suburbs, for the barbarians shunned fixing themselves in the towns themselves, looking upon them like graves surrounded with nets, he first of all entered Brumat, and just as be reached that place he was encountered by a body of Germans prepared for battle.

13. Having arranged his own army in the form of a crescent, the engagement began, and the enemy were speedily surrounded and utterly defeated.

Some were taken prisoners, others were slain in the heat of the battle, the rest sought safety by rapid flight.

III. § 1. AFTER this, meeting with no resistance, he determined to proceed to recover Cologne, which had been destroyed

* The text is defective here, as it is wherever these marks occur.

A.D. 356.7

JULIAN'S OFERATIONS.

87

before his arrival in Gaul. In that district there is no city or fortress to be seen except that near Confluentes; a place so named because there the river Moselle becomes

. mingled with the Rhine there is also the village of Rheinmagen, and likewise a single tower near Cologne.

2. After having taken possession of Cologne he did not leave it till the Frank kings began, through fear of him, to abate of their fury, when he contracted a peace with them likely to be of future advantage to the republic. In the mean time he put the whole city into a state of com. plete defence.

3. Then, auguring well from these first-fruits of victory, he departed, passing through the district of Treves, with the intention of wintering at Sens, which was a town very suitable for that purpose.

When bearing, so to say, the weight of a world of wars upon his shoulders, he was occupied by perplexities of various kinds, and among them how to provide for establishing in places most exposed to danger the soldiers who had quitted their former posts ; how to defeat the enemies who had conspired together to injure the Roman cause; and further, how to provide supplies for the army while employed in so many different quarters.

IV.

§ 1. While he was anxiously revolving these things in his mind, he was attacked by a numerous force of the nemy, who had conceived a hope of being able to take the town. And they were the more confident of success because, from the information of deserters, they had learnt that he neither had with him his Scutarii nor his Gentiles, both of which bodies of troops had been distributed among the different municipal towns in order that they might be the more easily supplied with provisions.

2. Therefore after the gates of the city had been barri. caded, and the weakest portions of the walls carefully strengthened, Julian was seen night and day on the battlements and ramparts, attended by a band of armed men, boiling over with anger and gnashing his teeth, because, often as he wished to sally forth, he was pre

i Coblenz.

vented from taking such a step by the scantiness of the force which he had with him.

3. At last, after thirty days, the barbarians retired disappointed, murmuring that they had been so vain and weak as to attempt the siege of such a city. It deserves however to be remarked, as a most unworthy circumstance, that when Julian was in great personal danger, Marcellus, the master of the horse, who was posted in the immediate neighbourhood, omitted to bring him any assistance, though the danger of the city itself, even if the prince had not been there, ought to have excited his en. deavours to relieve it from the peril of a siege by so formidable an enemy.

4. Being now delivered from this fear, Julian, ever prudent and active, directed his anxious thoughts incessantly to the care of providing that, after their long labours, his soldiers should have rest, which, however · brief, might be sufficient to recruit their strength. In

addition to the exhaustion consequent on their toils, they were distressed by the deficiency of crops on the land, which through the frequent devastations to which they had been exposed afforded but little suitable for human food.

5. But these difficulties he likewise surmounted by his ever wakeful diligence, and a more confident hope of future success opening itself to his mind, be rose with higher spirits to accomplish his other designs.

V.

§ 1. In the first place (and this is a most difficult task for every one), be imposed on himself a rigid temperance, and maintained it as if he had been living under the obligation of the sumptuary laws. These were originally brought to Rome from the edicts of Lycurgus and the tables of laws compiled by Solon, and were for a long time strictly observed. When they had become somewhat obsolete, they were re-established by Sylla, who, guided by the apophthegms of Democritus, agreed with him that it is Fortune which spreads an ambitious table, but that Virtue is content with a sparing one.

2. And likewise Cato of Tusculum, who from his pure and temperate way of life obtained the surname of the

INDUSTRY :F JULIAN.

A.D. 366.)

89 Censor, said with profound wisdom on the same subject,

When there is great care about food, there is very little care about virtue."

3. Lastly, though he was continually reading the little treatise which Constantius, when sending him as his stepson to prosecute his studies, had written for him with his own hand, in which he made extravagant provision for the dinner-expenses of the Cæsar, Julian now forbade pheasants, or sausages, or even sow's udder to be served

up

to him, contenting himself with the cheap and ordinary food of the common soldiers.

4. Hereupon arose his custom of dividing his nights into three portions, one of which he allotted to rest, one to the affairs of the state, and one to the study of literature; and we read that Alexander the Great bad been accustomed to do the same, though he practised the rule with less self-reliance. For Alexander, having placed a brazen shell on the ground beneath him, used to hold a silver ball in his hand, which he kept stretched outside his bed, 80 that when sleep pervading his whole body had relaxed the rigour of his muscles, the rattling of the ball falling might banish slumber from his eyes.

5. But Julian, without any instrument, awoke whenever he pleased; and always rising when the night was but half spent, and that not from a bed of feathers, or silken coverlets shining with varied brilliancy, but from a rough blanket or rug, would secretly offer his supplications to Mercury, who, as the theological lessons which he had received had taught him, was the swift intelligence of the world, exciting the different emotions of the mind. And thus removed from all external circumstances calculated to distract his attention, he gave his whole attention to the affairs of the republic.

6. Then, after having ended this arduous and important business, he turned and applied himself to the cultivation of his intellect. And it was marvellous with what excessive ardour he investigated and attained to the sublime knowledge of the loftiest matters, and how, seeking as it were some food for his mind which might give it strength to climb up to the sublimest truths, he ran through every branch of philosophy in profound and subtle discussions.

7. Nevertheless, while engaged in amassing knowledge of this kind in all its fullness and power, he did not despise the humbler accomplishments. He was tolerably fond of poetry and rhetoric, as is shown by the invariable and pure elegance, mingled with dignity, of all bis speeches and letters. And he likewise studied the varied history of our own state and of foreign countries. To all these accomplishments was added a very tolerable degree of eloquence in the Latin language.

8. Therefore, if it be true, as many writers affirm, that Cyrus the king, and Simonides the lyric poet, and Hippias of Elis, the most acum uf the Sophists, excelled as they did in memory because they had obtained that faculty through drinking a particular medicine, we must also believe that Julian in his early manhood had drunk the whole cask of memory, if such a thing could ever be found. And these are the nocturnal signs of his chastity and virtue.

9. But as for the manner in which he passed his days, whether in conversing with eloquence and wit, or in making preparations for war, or in actual conflict of battle, or in his administration of affairs of the state, correcting all defects with magnanimity and liberality, these things shall all be set forth in their proper place.

10. When he was compelled, as being a prince,-to apply himself to the study of military discipline, having been previously confined to lessons of philosophy, and when he was learning the art of marching in time while the pipes were playing the Pyrrhic air, he often, calling upon the name of Plato, ironically quoted that old proverb, “ A packsaddle is placed on an ox; this is clearly a burden which does not belong to me."

11. On one occasion, when some secretaries were introduced into the council-chamber, with solemn ceremony, to receive some gold, one of their company did not, as is the usual custom, open his robe to receive it, but took it in the hollow of both his hands joined together; on which Julian said, secretaries only know how to seize things, not how to accept them.

12. Having been approached by the parents of a virgin who had been ravished, seeking for justice, he gave sen. tence that the ravisher, on conviction, should be banished ; and when the parents complained of this sentence as un.

« ForrigeFortsett »