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the emperor, for ever renouncing the ungrateful city, proclaimed his resolution to pass the ensuing winter at Tarsus in Cilicia.23 riu tophirt Yet Antioch possessed one citizen, whose genius and virtues A.d. might atone, in the opinion of Julian, for the vice and folly of
his country. The sophist Libanius was born in the capital of the East; he publicly professed the arts of rhetoric and declamation at Nice, Nicomedia, Constantinople, Athens, and, duringthe remainder of his life, at Antioch. His school was assiduously frequented by the Grecian youth; his disciples, who sometimes exceeded the number of eighty, celebrated their incomparable master; and the jealousy of his rivals, who persecuted him from one city to another, confirmed the favourable opinion which Libanius ostentatiously displayed of his superior merit. The preceptors of Julian had extorted a rash but solemn assurance that he would never attend the lectures of their adversary: the curiosity of the royal youth was checked and inflamed: he secretly procured the writings of this dangerous sophist, and gradually surpassed, in the perfect imitation of his style, the most laborious of his domestic pupils.24 When Julian ascended the throne, he declared his impatience to embrace and reward the Syrian sophist, who had preserved, in a degenerate age, the Grecian purity of taste, of manners and of religion. The emperor's prepossession was increased and justified by the discreet pride of his favourite. Instead of pressing, with the foremost of the crowd, into the palace of Constantinople, Libanius calmly expected his arrival at Antioch; withdrew from court on the first symptoms of coldness and indifference; required a formal invitation for each visit; and taught his sovereign an important lesson, that he might command the obedience of a subject, but that he must deserve the attachment of a friend. The sophists of every age, despising, or affecting to despise, the accidental distinctions of birth and fortune,26 reserve their esteem for the superior qualities of the mind, with which they themselves are so plentifully endowed. Julian might disdain the acclamations of a venal court, who adored the Imperial purple; but he was deeply flattered by the praise, the admonition, the freedom, and
"Julian, in Misopogon. p. 364 [p. 470, ed. H.]. Ammian. xxiii. 2, and Valcsius ad loc. Libanius, ir a professed oration, invites bim to return to his loyal and penitent city of Antioch.
*• Libanius, Orat. Parent, c. vii. p. 230, 231.
M Kunapius reports that Libanius refused the honorary rank of Praetorian praefect, as less illustrious than the title of Sophist (in Vit. Sophist p. 135). The critics have observed a similar sentiment in one of the epistles (xviii. edit. Wolf) of Libanius himself.
the envy of an independent philosopher, who refused his favours, loved his person, celebrated his fame, and protected his memory. ITie voluminous writings of Libanius still exist: for the most part, they are the vain and idle compositions of an orator, who cultivated the science of words; the productions of a recluse student, whose mind, regardless of his contemporaries, was incessantly fixed on the Trojan war and the Athenian commonwealth. Yet the sophist of Antioch sometimes descended from this imaginary elevation; he entertained a various and elaborate correspondence; 26 he praised the virtues of his own times; he boldly arraigned the abuses of public and private life; and he eloquently pleaded the cause of Antioch against the just resentment of Julian and Theodosius. It is the common calamity of old age,27 to lose whatever might have rendered it desirable; but Libanius experienced the peculiar misfortune of surviving the religion and the sciences to which he had consecrated his genius. The friend of Julian was an indignant spectator of the triumph of Christianity; and his bigotry, which darkened the prospect of the visible world, did not inspire Libanius with any lively hopes of celestial glory and happiness.28
The martial impatience of Julian urged him to take the field Much of in the beginning of the spring; and he dismissed, with contempt inSnui and reproach, the senate of Antioch, who accompanied the em- Much e peror beyond the limits of their own territory, to which he was resolved never to return. After a laborious march of two days,29 he halted on the third at Bercea, or Aleppo, where he had the mortification of finding a senate almost entirely Christian; who
* Near two thousand of his letters, a mode of composition in which Libanius was thought to excel, are still extant, and already published. The critics may praise their subtle and elegant brevity ; yet Dr. Bentley (Dissertation upon Phalaris, p. 487) might justly, though quaintly, observe that "you feel, by the emptiness and deadness of them, that you converse with some dreaming pedant, with his elbow on his desk ".
87 His birth is assigned to the year 314. He mentions the seventy-sixth year of his age (A.D. 390), and seems to allude to some events of a still later date.
88 Libanius has composed the vain, prolix, but curious, narrative of his own life (torn. ii. p. 1-84, edit. Morell.), of which Eunapius (p. 130-135) has left a concise and unfavourable account. Among the moderns, Tillemont (Hist, des Empereurs,
torn. iv. p. 571-576), Fabricius (Bibliot. Graec. torn. vii. p. 376-414) and Lardner (Heathen Testimonies, torn. iv. p. 127-163) have illustrated the character and writings of this famous sophist. [See Appendix i.\
88 From Antioch to Litarbe, on the territory of Chalcis, the road, over hills and through morasses, was extremely bad; and the loose stones were cemented only with sand. Julian, epist. xxvii. It is singular enough that the Romans should have neglected the great communication between Antioch and the Euphrates. See Wesseling, Itinerar. p. 190; Bergier, Hist des Grands Chcinins, torn. ii. p. 100.
received with cold and formal demonstrations of respect the eloquent sermon of the apostle of paganism. The son of one of the most illustrious citizens of Bercea, who had embraced, either from interest or conscience, the religion of the emperor, was disinherited by his angry parent. The father and the son were invited to the Imperial table. Julian, placing himself between them, attempted, without success, to inculcate the lesson and example of toleration; supported, with affected calmness, the indiscreet zeal of the aged Christian, who seemed to forget the sentiments of nature and the duty of a subject; and at length turning towards the afflicted youth, "Since you have lost a father," said he, "for my sake, it is incumbent on me to supply
[jnlurch] his place".80 The emperor was received in a manner much more agreeable to his wishes at Batnae,31 a small town pleasantly seated in a grove of cypresses, about twenty miles from the city of Hierapolis The solemn rites of sacrifice were decently prepared by the inhabitants of Batnce, who seemed attached to the worship of their tutelar deities, Apollo and Jupiter; but the serious piety of Julian was offended by the tumult of their applause; and he too clearly discerned that the smoke which arose from their altars was the incense of flattery rather than of devotion. The ancient and magnificent temple, which had sanctified, for so many ages, the city of Hierapolis,33 no longer subsisted; and the consecrated wealth, which afforded a liberal maintenance to more than three hundred priests, might hasten
1Mb lurch] its downfall. Yet Julian enjoyed the satisfaction of embracing a philosopher and a friend, whose religious firmness had withstood the pressing and repeated solicitations of Constantius and Gallus, as often as those princes lodged at his house, in thenpassage through Hierapolis. In the hurry of military preparation, and the careless confidence of a familiar correspondence, the zeal of Julian appears to have been lively and uniform. He had now undertaken an important and difficult war; and the anxiety of the event rendered him still more attentive to observe and register the most trifling presages from which, according to the rules of divination, any knowledge of futurity could be derived.33 He informed Libanius of his progress as far as Hierapolis, by an elegant epistle,34 which displays the facility of his genius and his tender friendship for the sophist of Antioch.
90 Julian alludes to this incident (epist. xxvii), which is more distinctly related by Theodore! (1. iii. c. 22). The intolerant spirit of the father is applauded by Tillemont (Hist, des Empereurs, torn. iv. p. 534), and even by La Bteterie (Vie de Julien, p. 413).
n [Not to be confounded with Batnae beyond the Euphrates, which was also a halting place of Julian. See map. ]
88 See the curious treatise de Dea Syria, inserted among the works of Lucian (torn. iii. p. 451-490, edit. Reitz). The singular appellation of Ninus velus (Ammian. xiv. 8) might induce a suspicion that Hierapolis had been the royal seat of the Assyrians.
Hierapolis, situate almost on the banks of the Euphrates,36 Hu daiun had been appointed for the general rendezvous of the Roman p«»il troops, who immediately passed the great river on a bridge of Pitt Much] boats, which was previously constructed.30 If the inclinations of Julian had been similar to those of his predecessor, he might have wasted the active and important season of the year in the circus of Samosata, or in the churches of Edessa. But, as the warlike emperor, instead of Constat it i us, had chosen Alexander for his model, he advanced without delay to Carrhse,37 a veryi^mii ancient city of Mesopotamia, at the distance of fourscore miles from Hierapolis. The temple of the Moon attracted the devotion of Julian; but the halt of a few days was principally employed in completing the immense preparations of the Persian war. The secret of the expedition had hitherto remained in his own breast; but, as Carrhas is the point of separation of the two great roads, he could no longer conceal whether it was his design to attack the dominions of Sapor on the side of the Tigris or on that of the Euphrates. The emperor detached an army of thirty thousand men, under the command of his kinsman Procopius, and of Sebastian, who had been duke of Egypt. They were ordered to direct their march towards Nisibis, and to secure the frontier from the desultory incursions of the enemy, before they attempted the passage of the Tigris. Their subsequent operations were left to the discretion of the generals; but Julian expected that, after wasting with fire and sword the
■ Julian (epistle xxviii [xxvii]) kept a regular account of all the fortunate omens; but be suppresses the inauspicious signs, which Ammianus (xxiii. 2) has carefully recorded.
M Julian, epistle xxvii. p. 399-402 [515-519]
"I take the earliest opportunity of acknowledging my obligations to M. d'Anville, for his recent geography of the Euphrates and Tigris (Pans, 1780, in 4to), which particularly illustrates the expedition of Julian. [Cp. App. 24.]
M There are three passages within a few miles of each other: 1. Zeugma, celebrated by the ancients; 2. Bir, frequented by the moderns; and, 3. the bridge of Menbigz, or Hierapolis, at the distance of four parasangs from the city. [Membij is Hierapolis, and the city is more than twenty miles from the river.]
87 Haran, or Carrha;, was the ancient residence of the Sabeeans and of Abraham. Seethe Index Geographicus of Schultens (ad calcem Vit. Saladin.), a work from which I have obtained much Oriental knowledge concerning the ancient and modern geography of Syria and the adjacent countries.
fertile districts of Media and Adiabene, they might arrive under the walls of Ctesiphon about the same time that he himself, advancing with equal steps along the banks of the Euphrates. Dtttibuion should besiege the capital of the Persian monarchy. The °f Aad.bu success of this well-concerted plan depended, in a great measure. on the powerful and ready assistance of the king of Armenia, who. without exposing the safety of his own dominions, might detach an army of four thousand horse, and twenty thousand foot, to the assistance of the Romans.38 But the feeble Arsaces Tiranus,* king of Armenia, had degenerated still more shamefully than his father Chosroes from the manly virtues of the great Tiridates; and, as the pusillanimous monarch was averse to any enterprise of danger and glory, he could disguise his timid indolence by the more decent excuses of religion and gratitude. He expressed a pious attachment to the memory of Constantius, from whose hands he had received in marriage Olympias, the daughter of the prsefect Ablavius; and the alliance of a female who had been educated as the destined wife of the emperor Constans exalted the dignity of a Barbarian king.40 Tiranus professed the Christian religion; he reigned over a nation of Christians; and he was restrained, by every principle of conscience and interest, from contributing to the victory, which would consummate the ruin of the church. The alienated mind of Tiranus was exasperated by the indiscretion of Julian, who treated the king of Armenia as his slave, and as the enemy of the gods. The haughty and threatening style of the Imperial mandates41 awakened the secret indignation of a prince who, in the humiliating state of dependence, was still conscious of his royal descent from the Arsacides, the lords of the East and the rivals of the Roman power. Mmt.ry The military dispositions of Julian were skilfully contrived
fjuKni.*TM. to deceive the spies, and to divert the attention, of Sapor. The
38 See Xenophon. Cyropaed. L iii. p. 189, edit. Hutchinson [c 1. § 33, 34J. Artavasdes might have supplied Mark Antony with 16,000 horse, armed and disciplined after the Parthian manner (Plutarch, in M. Antonio, torn. v. p. 117 [c. 50]1 88 Moses of Chorene (Hist. Armeniac. 1. iii. c 11, p. 242) fixes his accession (a.d. 357) to the seventeenth year of Constantius. [See Appendix 18.]
10 Animian. xx. 11. Athanasius (torn. i. p. 856) says, in general terms, that Constantius gave his brother's widow rots SapBopoic, an expression more suitable 10 a Roman than a Christian.
11 Ammianus (xxiii. 2) uses a word much too soft for the occasion, monuerat. Muratori (Fabricius, Bibliothec. Grsec. torn. vii. p. 86) has published an epistle from J ulian to the satrap Arsaces; fierce, vulgar, and (though it might deceive Sozomen, 1. vi. c 5), most probably spurious. La Bl£terie (Hist, de Jovien, torn, ii. p. 339) translates and rejects it. [The text of this forgery will be found in Hertlein's ed. of Julian, p. 589.]