Page:Roman History of Ammianus Marcellinus.djvu/521

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were got ready, and the weights, and lead, and scourges, and other engines of torture. And all places resounded with the horrors of the cruel voice of the executioners, and the cries uttered amid the clanking of chains: "Hold him!" "Shut him up!" "Squeeze him!" "Hide him!" and other yells uttered by the ministers of those hateful duties.

24. And since we saw numbers condemned to death after having endured cruel torture, everything being thrown into complete confusion as if in perfect darkness, because the complete recollection of everything which then took place has in some degree escaped me, I will mention briefly what I do remember.

25. Among the first who were summoned before the bench, was Pergamius, who, as we have already mentioned, was betrayed by Palladius, who accused him of having arrived at a foreknowledge of certain events through wicked incantations. As he was a man of exceeding eloquence, and very likely to say dangerous things, and after some very trivial interrogatories had been put to him, seeing that the judges were hesitating what questions to put first and what last, he began himself to harangue them boldly, and shouting out the names with a loud voice and without any cessation, he named several thousand persons as accomplices with himself, demanding that people should be brought forward to be accused of great crimes from every part of the empire, up to the very shores of the great Atlantic. The task that he thus seemed to be putting together for them was too arduous; so they condemned him to death; and afterwards put whole troops of others to death, till they came to the case of Theodorus, which was regarded, after the manner of the Olympian games, as a crowning of the whole.

26. The same day, among other circumstances, this melancholy event took place, that Salia, who a little while before had been the chief treasurer in Thrace, when he was about to be brought out of his prison to have his cause heard, and was putting on his shoes, as if suddenly overwhelmed by the dread of his impending destruction, died in the hands of his gaolers.

27. So when the court was opened, and when the judges exhibited the decrees of the law, though, in accordance with