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(90)"Plin. Hist. Natur. viii. 6, from the annals of Piso.
(91) See Maffei, Verona Illustrata, p. iv. l. i. c. 2.
(92) Maffei, I. ii. c. 2. The height was very much exaggerated by the ancients. It reached almost to the heavens, according to Calphurnius (Eclog. vii. 23), and surpassed the ken of human sight, accordin to 3. Marcellinus (xvi. 10). Yet how trifling to the great pyramid of Egypt, which rises 500 fe perpendicular!
(93). According to different copies of Victor, we read 77,000, or 87,000 spectators; but Maffei (l. ii. c 12,) finds room on the openseats for no more than 34,000. The remainder were contained in the upper covered galleries.
(94). See Maffei, (l. ii. c. 5–12). He treats the very difficult subject with all possible clearness, and like an architect, as well as an antiquarian.
(95) Calphurn. Eclog. vii. 64.73. These lines are curious, and the whole Eclogue has been of infinite use to Maffei. Calphurnius, as well as Martial (see his first book), was a poet; but when they described the amphitheatre, they both wrote from their own senses, and to those of the Romans.
(96) Consult Plin. Hist. Natur. xxxiii. 16, xxxvii. 11.
(97) Balteus en gemmis, en in lita porticus auro.
tim radiant, &c. Calphurn. vii. O
ruin. Yet, even in the transport of their rage and grief, the troops observed a regular proceeding, which proves how firmly discipline had been re-established by the martial successors of Gailienus. A general assembly of the army was appointed to be held at Chalcedon, whither Aper was transported in chains, as a prisoner and a criminal. A vacant tribunal was erected in the midst of the camp, and the generals and tribunes formed a great military council. They soon announced to the multitude, that their choice had fallen on Dioclesian, commander of the domestics or bodyguards, as the person the most capable of revenging and succeeding their beloved emperor. The future fortunes of the candidate depended on the chance or conduct of the present hour. Conscious that the station which he had filled, exposed him to some suspicions, Dioclesian ascended the tribunal, and raising his eyes toward the sun, made a solemn prosession of his own innocence, in the presence of that ...; Deity.(106) Then, assuming the tone of a sovereign and a judge, he commanded that Aper should be brought in chains to the foot of the tribunal. “This man,” said he, “is the murderer of Numerian;” and, without giving him time to enter on a dangerous justification, drew his sword, and buried it in the breast of the unfortunate praefect. A charge supported by such decisive proof was admitted without contradiction, and the legions, with repeated acclamations, acknowledged the justice and authority of the emperor 5. fore we enter upon the memorable reign of that prince, it will be proper to punish and dismiss the unworthy brother of Numerian. Carinus possessed arms and treasures sufficient to support his legal title to the empire. But his ; : vices overbalanced every advantage of birth and situation. The most aithful servants of the father despised the incapacity, and dreaded the cruel arrogance, of the son. The hearts of the people were engaged in favour of his rival, and even the senate was inclined to prefer an usurper to a tyrant. The arts of Dioclesian inflamed the general discontent; and the winter was employed in secret intrigues and open pop.: for a civil war. [A. D. 285.] In the spring, the forces of the East and of the West encountered each other in the plains of Margus, a small city of Maesia, in the neighbourhood of the Danube.(108) The troops solately returned from the Persian war, had acquired their glory at the expense of health and numbers, nor were they in a condition to contend with the unexhausted strength of the legions of Europe. Their ranks were broken, and for a moment Dioclesian despaired of the purple and of life But the advantages which Carinus had obtained by the valour of his soldiers he quickly lost by the infidelity of his officers. . A tribune, whose wife he had seduced, seized the . of revenge, and by a single blow extinguished civil discord in the blood of the adulterer.(109)
The reign of Dioclesian and his three associates, Mariman, Galerius, and Constantius-General re-establishment of order and tranquillity—The Persian war, victory, and triumph—The new form of administration—Abdication and retirement of Dioclesian and JMaximian.
[A. D. 285.] As the reign of Dioclesian was more illustrious than that of any of his predecessors, so was his birth more abject and obscure. The strong claims of merit and of violence had frequently superseded the ideal prerogatives of nobility; but a distinct line of separation was hitherto preserved between
o Aurel. Victor. Eutropius, ix. 20. Hieronym. In Chron. 107). Vopiscus in Hist. August. p. 252. The reason why Dioclesian killed Aper (a wild boar), was sounded on a prophecy and a pun, as foolish as they are well known. (108) Eutropius marks its situation very accurately; it was between the Mons Aureus and Viminiacum. M. d'Anville (Geographie Ancienne, tom. i. p. 304,) places Margus at Kastolatz" in Servia, a little below Belgrade and Semendria. (109) Hist. August. p. 254. Eutropius, p. ix.20. Aurelius Victor. Victor in Epitome.