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that important pass, had descended by right of conquest or inheritance to a prince of the Huns, who offered it for a moderate price to the emperor: but while Anastasius paused, while he timorously computed the cost and the distance, a more vigilant rival interposed, and Cabades forcibly occupied the straits of Caucasus. The Albanian and Iberian gates excluded the horsemen of Scythia from the shortest and most practicable roads, and the whole front of the mountains was covered by the rampart of Gog and Magog, the long wall which has excited the curiosity of an Arabian caliph * and a Russian conqueror.f According to a recent description, huge stones, seven feet thick, twenty-one feet in length, or height, are artificially joined without iron or cement, to compose a wall, which runs above three hundred miles from the shores of Derbend, over the hills and through the valleys of Daghestan and Georgia. Without a vision, such a work might be undertaken by the policy of Cabades; without a miracle, it might be accomplished by his son, so formidable to the Romans under the name of Chosroes; so dear to the Orientals, under the appellation of Nushirwan. The Persian monarch held in his hand the keys both of peace and war; but he stipulated in every treaty that Justinian should contribute to the expense of a common barrier, which equally protected the two empires from the inroads of the Scythians.J
VII. Justinian suppressed the schools of Athens and the -\ consulship of Eome, which had given so many sages and heroes to mankind. Both these institutions had long since degenerated from their primitive glory; yet some reproach may be justly inflicted on the avarice and jealousy of a prince, by whose hands such venerable ruins were destroyed.
* The imaginary rampart of Gog and Magog, which was seriously explored and believed by a caliph of the ninth century, appears to be derived from the gates of Mount Caucasus, and a vague report of the wall of China. (G^ograph. Nubiensis, p. 267—270. Memoires de 1'Academic, tom. xxxi, p. 210—219.)
+ See a learned dissertation of Baier, de muro Caucaseo, in Comment. Aoad. Petropol. ann. 1726, tom. i, p. 425—463, but it is destitute of a map or plan. When the Czar Peter I. became master of Derbend in the year 1722, the measure of the wall was found to be three thousand two hundred and eighty-five Russian orgyite, or fathoms, each of seven feet English; in the whole somewhat more than four miles ia length.
X See the fortifications and treaties of Chosroes or Nushirwan, in
Procopius (Persic. i 1, c. 16. 22; 1. 2) and D Herbelot (p. CSi).
Athens, after her Persian triumphs, adopted the philosophy of Iouia and the rhetoric of Sicily; and these studies became the patrimony of a city whose inhabitants, about thirty thousand males, condensed within the period of a single life, the genius of ages and millions. Our sense of the dignity of human nature is exalted by the simple recollection, that Isocrates* was the companion of Plato and Xenophon; that he assisted, perhaps with the historian Thucydides, at the first representations of the (Edipus of Sophocles and the Iphigenia of Euripides; and that his pupils iEschines and Demosthenes contended for the crown of patriotism in the presence of Aristotle, the master of Theophrastus, who taught at Athens with the founders of the Stoic and Epicurean sects.f The ingenuous youth of Attica enjoyed the benefits of their domestic education, which was communicated without envy to the rival cities. Two thousand disciples heard the lessons of Theophrastus ;J the schools of rhetoric must have been still more populous than those of philosophy; and a rapid succession of students diffused the fame of their teachers as far as the utmost limits of the Grecian language and name. Those limits were enlarged by the victories of Alexander; the arts of Athens survived her freedom and dominion; and the Greek colonies, which the Macedonians planted in Egypt, and scattered over Asia, undertook long and frequent pilgrimages to worship the Muses in their favourite temple on the banks of the Ilissus. The Latin conquerors respectfully listened to the instructions of their subjects and captives; the names of Cicero and Horace were enrolled in the schools of Athens; and after the perfect settlement of the Roman empire, the
* The life of Isocrates extends from Olymp. 86, 1. to 110, 3, (ante Christ. 436—338.) See Diohys. Halicarn. tom, ii, p. 149, 150, edit. Hudson; Plutarch (sive anonyinus) in Vit. X. Oratomm, p. 1538—1543, edit. H. Steph. Phot. cod. 259, p. 1543. [What rays of glory are here concentered into one dazzling point! Yet in four centuries the work of two thousand years was undone. When the contrast stands before us in so strong a light,it invites us to look with a searching eye into the origin of the change.—Ed.] + The schools of Athens are
copiously, though concisely, represented in the Fortuna Attica of Meursius (c. 8, p. 59—73, in tom. i, Opp.). For the state and arts of the city, see the first book of Pausanias, and a small tract of Dicsearehus (in the second volume of Hudson's Geographers), who wrote about Olymp. 117. Dodwell's Dissertat. sect. 4.
t Diogen. Laert . de Vit. Philosoph. l . 5, segm. 87, p. 289.
natives of Italy, of Africa, and of Britain, conversed in the groves of the academy with their fellow-students of the East. The studies of philosophy and eloquence are congenial to a popular state, which encourages the freedom of inquiry, and submits only to the force of persuasion. In the republics of Greece and Home, the art of speaking was the powerful engine of patriotism or ambition; and the schools of rhetoric poured forth a colony of statesmen and legislators. When the liberty of public debate was suppressed, the orator, in the honourable profession of an advocate, might plead the cause of innocence and justice; he might abuse his talents in the more profitable trade of panegyric; and the same precepts continued to dictate the fanciful declamations of the sophist, and the chaster beauties of historical composition. The systems, which professed to unfold the nature of God, of man, and of the universe, entertained the curiosity of the philosophic student; and according to the temper of his mind, he might doubt with the sceptics or decide with the Stoics, sublimely speculate with Plato, or severely argue with Aristotle. The pride of the adverse sects had fixed an unattainable term of moral happiness and perfection; but the race was glorious and salutary; the disciples of Zeno, and even those of Epicurus, were taught both to act and to suffer; and the death of Petronius was not less effectual than that of Seneca, to humble a tyrant by the discovery of his impotence. The light of science could not indeed be confined within the walls of Athens. Her incomparable writers address themselves to the human race; the living masters emigrated to Italy and Asia; Berytus, in later times, was devoted to the study of the law; astronomy and physic were cultivated in the museum of Alexandria; but the Attic schools of rhetoric and philosophy maintained their superior reputation from the Peioponnesian war to the reign of Justinian. Athens, though situate in a barren soil, possessed a pure air, a free navigation, and the monuments of ancient art. That sacred retirement was seldom disturbed by the business of trade or government; and the last of the Athenians were distinguished by their lively wit, the purity of their taste and language, their social manners, and some traces, at least in discourse, of the magnanimity of their fathers. In the suburbs of the city, the academy of the Platonists, the lyceum of the Peripatetics, the portico of the
Stoics, and the garden of the Epicureans, were planted with trees and decorated with statues: and the philosophers, instead of being immured in a cloister, delivered their instructions in spacious and pleasant walks, which, at different hours, were consecrated to the exercises of the mind and body. The genius of the founders still lived in those venerable seats; the ambition of succeeding to the masters of human reason, excited a generous emulation; and the merit of the candidates was determined, on each vacancy, by the free voices of an enlightened people. The Athenian professors were paid by their disciples: according to their mutual wants and abilities, the price appears to have varied from a mina to a talent; and Isocrates himself, who derides the avarice of the sophists, required, in his school of rhetoric, about thirty pounds from each of his hundred pupils. The wages of industry are just and honourable, yet the same Isocrates shed tears at the first receipt of a stipend; the Stoic might blush when he was hired to preach the contempt of money; and 1 should be sorry to discover, that Aristotle or Plato so far degenerated from the example of Socrates, as to exchange knowledge for gold. But some property of lands and houses was settled by the permission of the laws, and the legacies of deceased friends, on the philosophic chairs of Athens. Epicurus bequeathed to his disciples the gardens which he had purchased for eighty minae, or two hundred and fifty pounds, with a fund sufficient for their frugal subsistence and monthly festivals ;* and the patrimony of Plato afforded an annual rent, which, in eight centuries, was gradually increased from three to one thousand pieces of gold.f The schools of Athens were protected by the wisest and most virtuous of the Roman priuces. The library, which Hadrian founded, was placed in a portico, adorned with pictures, statues, and a roof of alabaster, and supported by one hundred columns of Phrygian marble. The public salaries were assigned by the generous spirit of the Antonines; and each professor, of politics, of rhetoric, of the
* See the testament of Epicurus in Diogen. Laert. 1 . 10, segm. 16— 20, p. 611, 612. A single epistle (ad Familiarea, 13, 1) displays the injustice of the Areopagus, the fidelity of the Epicureans, the dexterous politeness of Cicero, and the mixture of contempt and esteem with which the Roman senators considered the philosophy and philosophers of Greece. + Damascius, in Vit , Isidor. apud Photium,
Platonic, the Peripatetic, the Stoic, and the Epicurean philosophy, received an annual stipend of ten thousand drachmse, or more than three hundred pounds sterling.* After the death of Marcus, these liberal donations, and the privileges attached to the thrones of science, were abolished and revived, diminished and enlarged: but some vestige of royal bounty may be found under the successors of Constantine; and their arbitrary choice of an unworthy candidate might tempt the philosophers of Athens to regret the days of independence and poverty.f It is remarkable, that the impartial favour of the Antonines was bestowed on the four adverse sects of philosophy, which they considered as equally useful, or at least as equally innocent. Socrates had formerly been the glory and the reproach of his country; and the first lessons of Epicurus so strangely scandalized the pious ears of the Athenians, that by his exile, and that of his antagonists, they silenced all vain disputes concerning the nature of the gods. But in the ensuing year, they recalled the hasty decree, restored the liberty of the schools, and were convinced, by the experience of ages, that the moral character of philosophers is not affected by the diversity of their theological speculations.J
The Gothic arms were less fatal to the schools of Athens '} than the establishment of a new religion, whose ministers superseded the exercise of reason, resolved every question by an article of faith, and condemned the infidel or sceptic cod. 212, p. 1054. * See Lucian (in Eunuch. tom ii,
p. 350—359, edit. Reitz) Philostratus (in Vit. Sophist. l . 2, o. 2), and Dion Cassius, or Xiphilin (1. 71, p. 1195), with their editors Du Soul, Olearius, and Reimar, and, above all, Salmasius (ad Hist. August. p. 72). A judicious philosopher, (Smith's Wealth of Nations, vol. ii, p. 340—374) prefers the free contributions of the students to a fixed stipend for the professor. + Brueker, Hist. Crit. Philosoph.
tom. ii, p. 310, &c. X The birth of Epicurus is fixed to
the year 342 before Christ, (Bayle) Olympiad 109, 3, and he opened his school at Athena, Olymp. 118, 3, three hundred and six years before the same era. This intolerant law (Athenseus, 1. 13, p. 610. Diogen. Laertius, 1. 5, s. 38, p. 290; Julius Pollux, 9, 5) was enacted in the same or the succeeding year. (Sigonius, Opp. tom, v, p. 62. Menagius, ad Diogen. Laert. p. 204. Corsini, Fasti Attici, tom. iv, p. 67, 68.) Theophrastus, chief of the Peripatetics, and disciple of Aristotle, was involved in the same exile. [Diogenes Laertius (x. 14.) very circumstantially fixes the birth of Epicurus to the mont} Gamelion of Olymp. 109, 3, which corresponds with Jan. B.C. 341. Tli date of the decree of Sophocles against the philosophers is uncertain. It is placed by some at B.c. 316, ten years before Epicurus arrived in
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