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a p. 356.] ACCUSATIONS OF SORCERY. 05
of him except this single fact, that he behaved gloriously in a moment of extreme danger. 10. When the king above mentioned, having been defeated by the Romans under the command of l'ompey, and fleeing to his kingdom of Colchis, left a grown-up daughter, named Drypetina, who at the time was dangerously ill, in the castle of Synhorium, under the care of this Menophilus, he completely cured the maiden by a variety of remedies, and preserved her in safety for her father; and when the fortress in which they were enclosed began to be besieged by Manlius Priscus, the lieutenant of the general, and when he became aware that the garrison were proosing to surrender, he, fearing that, to the dishonour of £ father, this noble damsel might be made a prisoner and be ravished, slew her, and then fell upon his sword himself. Now I will return to the point from which I digressed.
§ 1. AFTER Marcellus had been foiled, as I have mentioned, and had returned to Scudica, which was his native place, many great crimes were perpetrated in the camp of Augustus, under pretence of upholding the majesty of the emperor. 2. For if any one had consulted any cunning soothsayer about the squeak of a mouse, or the appearance of a weasel, or any other similar portent, or had used any old woman's chants to assuage any pain—a practice which the authority of medicine does not always prohibit—such a man was at once informed against, without being able to conceive by whom, and was brought before a court of law, and at once condemned to death. 3. About the same time an individual named Dames was accused by his wife of certain trifling acts, of which, whether he was innocent or not is uncertain; but Rufinus was his enemy, who, as we have mentioned, had given information of some matters which had been communicated to him by Gaudentius, the emperor's secretary, causing Africanus, then goverming Pannonia with the rank of a consul, to be put to death, with all his friends. This Rufinus was now, for his devotion to the interests of the emperor, tho chief commander of the praetorian guard.
4. He, being given to talking in a boastful manner, aftor having seduced that easily deluded woman (the wife of Dames) into an illicit connection with him, allured her into a perilous fraud, and persuaded her by an accumulation of lies to accuse her innocent husband of treason, and to invent a story that he had stolen a purple garment from tho sepulchre of Diocletian, and, by the help of sonic accomplices, still kept it concoaled.
6. When this story had been thus devised in a way to causo the destruction of many persons, Rufinus himself, full of hopes of some advantage, hastenod to the camp of the emperor, to spread his customary calumnies. And when the transaction had been divulged, Manlius, at that time tho commander of the pnetorian camp, a man of admirable integrity, received orders to make a strict inquiry into the churgo, having united to him, as a colleague in the examination, Ursulus, the chief paymaster, a man likowiso of praiseworthy equity and strictnoss.
6. Thero, after tho mnttor had beon rigorously investigated according to tho fashion of that poriod, and when, aftor mnny persons had boon put to tho torturo, nothing was found out, and tho judges wore in doubt and perplexity; at length truth, long suppressed, found a respite, and, under tho compulsion of a rigorous examination, tho woman confessed that Rufinus was the author of tho whole plot, nor did she even conceal the fact of her adultery with him. Reference was immediately made to tho law, and as order and justice required, tho judges condemned them both to death.
7. But as soon as this was known, Constantius became greatly enraged, and lamenting Rufinus as if the champion of his safety had been destroyed, he sent couriers on horseback express, with threatening orders to Ursulus, commanding him to return to court. Ursulus, disregarding the remonstrances of those who advised him to disobey, hastened fearlessly to tho presence; and having entered the emperor's council-chambers, with undaunted heart and voice related the whole transaction; and this confident behaviour of his shut the mouths of the flatterers, and delivered both the prefect and himself from serious danger.
8. It was at this time also that an event took plaoe in A qui
A.D. 356.] INFLUENCE OF INFORMERs. 07
tania which was more extensively talked about. A certain cunning person being invited to a splendid and sumptuous banquet, which are frequent in that province, having seen a pair of coverlets, with two purple borders of such width, that y the skill of those who waited they seemed to be but one; and beholding the table also covered with a similar cloth, he took up one in each hand, and arranged them so as to resemble the front of a cloak, representing them as having formed the ornament of the imperial robe ; and then searching over the whole house in order to find the robe which he affirmed must be hidden there, he thus caused the ruin of a wealthy estate. 9. With similar malignity, a certain secretary in Spain, who was likewise invited to a supper, hearing the servants, while bringing in the evening candles, cry “let us conquer,” affixing a malignant interpretation to that common exclamation, in like manner ruined a noble family. 10. These and other evils increasing more and more, because Constantius, being a man of a very timorous dis. position, was always thinking that blows were being aimed at him, like the celebrated tyrant of Sicily, Dionysius, who, because of this vice of his, taught his daughters to shave him, in order that he might not have to put his face in a stranger's power; and surrounded the small chamber in which he was accustomed to sleep with a deep ditch, so placed that it could only be entered by a drawbridge; the loose beams and axles of which when he went to bed he removed into his own chamber, replacing them when about to go forth at daybreak. 11. Moreover, those who had influence in the court pro
, moted the spread of these evils, with the hope of joining
to their own estates the forfeited possessions of those who should be condemned; and thus becoming rich by the ruin of their neighbours. 12. For, as clear evidence has shown, if Constantine was the first to excite the appetites of his followers, Con- . stantius was the prince who fattened them on the marrow of the provinces. 13. For under him the principal persons of every rank burnt with an insatiable desire : without any regard for justice or right. And among the ordinary judges, Rufinus, the chief prefect of the praetorium, was h
conspicuous for this avarice. And among the military officers Arbctio, the master of the horse, and Eusebius, the high chamberlain, . . . Ard . . , anus, tho quaestor, and in the city, the two Anicii, whose posterity, treading in tho steps of their fathers, could not be satisfied even with possessions much larger than thoy themselves had enjoyed.
§ 1. But in tho East, tho Persians now practising predatory inroads and lorays, in preference to engaging in pitched battles, as thoy bad been wont to do before, carried off continually great numbers of men and cattlo: sometimes making great booty, owing to the unoxpoct~o<lr,PKK nf their incursions, but at other times bning overpowered by superior numbers, they suffered losses. Sometimes, also, the inhabitants of tho districts which thoy had invaded had removed everything which could bo carried off.
2. But Musonianus, tho prefect of the prastorium, a man, as wo havo already said, of many liberal accomplishments
I but corrupt, and a person easily turned from the truth by I a bribo, acquired, by moans of some emissaries who were i skilful in deceiving and obtaining information, a knowledge of the plans of tho Persians; taking to his counsels |on this subject Cassianus, duko of Mesopotamia, a veteran who had served many campaigns, and had becomo hardened by all kinds of dangers.
3. And when, hy the concurrent report of spies, these
Iofficers hod become certain that Sapor was occupied in tha mont jempto frontier of hia kingdom in repelling the lips. tilitics of tho bordering tribes, which ho could not accomplish without great difficulty and bloodshed, they sought to tamper with Tamsapor, the general in command in the district nearest our border. Accordingly they sent sofdien oflio renown to confer with him secretly, to engage him, if opportunity served, to writoto tho king to pnrEiinHn him *o make pcaco with tho Roman emporor; whereby he, ltoing thon jSnaa evnry tnight. be the betttvr ahio to
subdue the rebels who were never weary of exciting disturbances.
X. Tamsapor poinrirlnH with thggn ■qr;H||p«) and, trusting to- them, reported to the king that Constantius,
A.D. 356.] WEAKNESS OF CONSTANTIUS. 99
being involved in very formidable wars, was a suppliant for peace. But it took a long time for these letters to reach the country of the Chionites and the Euseni, on whose borders Sapor had taken up his winter quarters.
§ 1. WHILE matters were thus proceeding in the eastern regions and in the Gauls, Constantius, as if the temple of Janus were now shut and hostilitics everywhere at an end, became desirous of visiting Rome, with the intention of celebrating his triumph over Magnentius, to which he could give no name, since the blood that he had spilt was that of Roman foes. 2. For indeed, neither by his own exertions, nor by those of his generals did he ever conquer any nation that made war upon him; nor did he make any additions to the empire; nor at critical moments was he ever seen to be the foremost or even among the foremost; but still he was eager to exhibit to the people, now in the enjoyment of peace, a vast procession, and standards heavy with gold, and a £ guards and followers, though the citizens themselves neither expected nor desired any such spectacle. 3. He was ignorant, probably, that some of the ancient emperors were, in time of peace, contented with their lictors, and that when the ardour of war forbade all inactivity, one,' in a violent storm, had trusted himself to a fisherman's boat; another, following the example of the Decii, had sacrificed his life for the safety of the republic; another" had by himself, accompanied by only a few soldiers of the lowest rank, gone as a spy into the camp of the enemy: in short, that many of them had rendered themselves illustrious by splendid exploits, in order to hand down to posterity a glorious memory of themselves, earned by their achievements.
* Julius Caesar: the story of the frightened fisherman being encouraged by the assurance that he was carrying “Caesar and his fortunes" is universally known.
* Claudius, who devoted himself in the Gothic war.
* Galerius Maximianus, who reconnoitred in person the camp of tho king of Persia.