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fate and that of his countryman Silvanus, called around him the Franks, of whom at that time there was a gTeat multitude in the palace, and in resolute language laid open and proved the falsehood of the machinations by which their lives were threatened, and was loud in his complaints.
12. When these things became known to the emperor, ho appointed the mombors of his Rcevot council and the chief ofticore of his army to mako furthor investigation of tho mattor. And when tho judges appeared to mako light of it, Florontius the sen of Kigridinnus, who at that time filled the post of master of the offices,1 having examined tho writings carefully, and detecting beneath them some vestiges of the tops of the former words which had been effaced, perceived, as was indeed the case, that by interpolations of the original letter, matters very different from any of which Silvanus was author had been written over them, according to the funoy of tho contriver of this fc gory.
13. On this tho cloud of treachory was dispersed, and tho eniperor, informed of the truth by a faithful report, rocallod the powers granted to the prefect, and ordered him to be submitted to an examination. Nevertheless he was acquitted through tho active combination of many of his friends; while Euscbius, the former treasurer of the einporor's secret purso, being put to tho torture, confessed that these things had been done with his privity.
14. /Edesius, affirming with obstinate denial that ho had never known anything which had been dono in the mattor, escaped, being adjudgod innocent. And thus tho transaction was brought to an end, and all those who had boon accused in the original information were acquitted; and Dynamius, as a man of oxcoeding accomplishments and prudence, was appointed to govern Etruria with the rank of corrector.
15. While these affairs were proceeding, Silvanus was living at Agrippina,' and having learnt by continual
1 Thin was a very important post; it seems to have nnitotl the functions of a modem chamberlain, chancellor, and secretary of state. The master presented citizens to the emperor, received foreign ambassadors, recommended mon for civil employments, decided oivil actions of several kinds, and superintended many of the affairs of the post.
information sent to him by his friends what Apodemius was doing with the hope of effecting his ruin; and knowing also how impressible the mind of the feeble emperor was; began to fear lest in his absence, and without being convicted of any crime, he might still be treated as a criminal. And so, being placed in a situation of the greatest difficulty, he began to think of trusting himself to the good faith of the barbarians. 16. But being dissuaded from this by Laniogaisus, at that time a tribune, whom we have already spoken of as the only person who was present with Constans when he was dying, himself seiving at that time as a volunteer; and being assured by Laniogaisus that the Franks, of whom he himself was a countryman, would put him to death, or else betray him for a bribe, he saw no safety anywhere in the present emergency, and so was driven to extreme counsels. And by degrees, having ecretly conferred with the chiefs of the principal legions, and having excited them by the magnitude of promised rewards, he tore for use on this occasion the purple silk from the insignia of the dragons' and standards, and so assumed the title of emperor. 17. And while these events are passing in Gaul, one day, a little before sunset, an unexpected messenger arrived at Milan, relating fully that Silvanus, being ambitious to Aise above his place as commander of the infantry, had tampered with the army, and assumed the imperial dignity. * 18. Constantius, at this amazing and unexpected event, seemed as if struck by a thunderbolt of fate, and having at once summoned a council to meet at the second watch, all the nobles hastened to the palace. No one had either mind to conceive or tongue to recommend what was best to be done; but in suppressed tones they mentioned the name of Ursicinus as a man eminent for skill in affairs of war, and one who had been undeservedly exposed to most injurious treatment. He was immediately sent for by the principal chamberlain, which is the most honourable kind of summons, and as soon as he entered the council-chamber he was offered the purple to salute much more graciously than at any former time. Diocletian was the first who introduced the custom of offering reverence to the emperor
* The dragons were the effigies on some of the standards.
after this foreign manner'and royal pretension; whereas all former princes, as we read, had been minted like judges.
19. And so the man who a littlo while before, through tho malevolent persecution of certain of the courtiers, had been termed the whirlpool of tho East, and who had been accused of a design to aim at the supreme power for his sons, was now recommended as one who was a most gkilful general, who had been the comrade of tho great Constantino, and as tho only man capable of extinguishing the throatenod conflagration. And though tho reasons for which ho was sent for wore honest, they wore not wholly frco from underhand motives. For while grout anxiety wns felt that Silvanus should be destroyed as a most formidable rebel, yet, if that object miscarried, it was thought that Uraicinus, being damaged by the failure, would himself easily be ruined; so that no scruple, which else was to be feared, would interpose to save him from destruction.
20. While arrangements were boing made for acclerating his journey, the genoral was preparing to repel the charges which had been brought against him; but tho emperor prevented hiiu, forbidding him in conciliatory lnngungq, saying that this was not an opportunity suitaMo for undertaking any controversy in defence of his cause, when tho imminent necessity of affairs rather prompted that no delay should be interposed to the restoration of parties to their pristine concord before the disunion got worse.
f 21. Thoroforo, after a long deliberation about many things, the first and most important matter in which consultation was held, was by what means Silvanus could be led to think tho emperor still ignorant of his conduct. And tho most likely manner to confirm him in his confidence appoarod to be that he should be informed, in a complimentary despatch, that Ursioinus was appointed his successor, and that ho was invited to return to court with undiminished power.
22. After this affair was arrangod, the officor who had brought the news to Milan was ordered to depart with some tribunes and ten of the Protectores and domestic guard as an escort, given to him at his own request, to aid him in the discharge of his publio duty. And of these I myself was ono, with my oolleague Vorrinianus; and all the rest were either friends or relations of mine.
A.D. 355.] URSICINUS GOES TO COLOGNE. 61
23. And now all of us, fearing mainly for ourselves, accompanied him a long distance on his journey; and although we seemed as exposed to danger as gladiators about to fight with wild beasts, yet considering in our minds that evils are often the forerunners of good, we recollected with admiration that expression of Cicero's, uttered by him in accordance with the eternal maxims of truth, which runs in these words:"—“And although it is a thing most desirable that one's fortune should always continue in a most flourishing condition; still that general level state of life brings not so much sensation of joy as we feel when, after having been surrounded by disasters or by dangers, fortune returns into a happier condition.”
24. Accordingly we hastened onwards by forced journeys, in order that the master of the horse, who was eager to acquire the honour of suppressing the revolt, might make his appearance in the suspected district before any rumour of the usurpation of Silvanus had spread among the Italians. ... But rapidly as we hastened, fame, like the. wind, had outstripped us, and had revealed some part of the facts; and when we reached Agrippina we found matters quite out of the reach of our attempts.
25. For a vast multitude of people, assembled from all quarters, were, with a mixture of haste and alarm, strengthening the foundations of Silvanus's enterprise, and a numerous military force was collected; so that it seemed more advisable, on the existing emergency, for our unfortunate general to await the intentions and pleasure of tho new emperor, who was assuring himself by ridiculous omens and signe that he was gaining accessions of strength. By permitting his feelings of security to increase, by different
* There is no such passage in any extant work of Cicero, but a sentence in his speech ad Pontifices resembles it: “For although it bo more desirable to end one's life without pain, and without injury, still it tends more to an immortality of glory to be regretted by one's countrymen, than to have been always free from injury.” And a still closer likeness to the sentiment is found in his had Quirites post reditum: "Although there is nothing more to be wished for by man than prosperous, equal, continual good-fortune in life, flowing on in a #: course, without any misadventure; still, if all my life had
n tranquil and peaceful, I should have been deprived of the incredible and almost heavenly delight and happiness which I now enjoy through your kindness."-Orations, v.2; liohn, p. 491-2.
. pretences of agreemont and flatter}', Silvanus, it was thought, might be reliovcd from all foar of hostility, and so bo the inoro easily deceived.
2G. But tho accomplishment of such a design appeared difficult. For it was necessary to use great cure and watchfulness to mako our desires subordinate to our opportunities, and to provent their either outrunning them, or falling behind them; since if our wishes wero allowed to become known unseasonably, it was plain we should all bo involved in one sentence af death.
27. However our general was kindly received, and (the . very business itself forcing us to bend our necks), having
been compelled to prostrate himself with all solemnity before the newly robed princo, still aiming at higher power, was treated as a highly favoured and eminent friend; having freedom of access and tho honour of a seat at the royal table granted to him in preference to every one else, in order that he might be consulted with the more secrecy about the principal affairs of state.
28. Silvanus expressed his indignation that, while unworthy persons had been raised to the consulship and to other nigh dignities, ho and Ursicinus alone, after the frequent and great toils which they had endured for the sake of the republic, had been so despised that ho himself hud been accused of treason in conscquonce of tho examination of some slaves, and had been exposed to an ignoble trial; while Ursicinus had been brought over from the East, and placed at the mercy of his enemies; and these were the subjects of his incessant complaints both in public and in private.
29. While, however, he was holding this kind of language, we were alarmed at the murmurs of our soldiers who wore now suffering from want, which surrounded us on s.11 sides; the troops showing every eagerness to make a rapid march through the dofilos of the Cottian Alps.
30. In this state of anxiety and agitation, we occupied ourselves in secretly deliberating on the means of arriving at our object; and at length, after our plans hod been repeatedly changed out of fear, it was determined to use great industry in seeking out prudent agents, bind ing them to seoreoy by solemn oaths, in order to tamper