Translation:Liber Memorialis

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Liber Memorialis
by Lucius Ampelius, translated from Latin by Wikisource
2221697Liber MemorialisLucius Ampelius


Lucius Ampelius greets his friend Macrinus.

Since you want to know everything, I have written this handbook for you, so that you may know what the universe is, what the elements are, what planet Earth contains, and what the human race have accomplished.

1. On the Universe[edit]

The universe is the totality of things, within which everything is and outside of which there is nothing; in Greek it is called cosmos. There are four elements of the universe:

  • Fire, which the sky consists of;
  • Water, which the Ocean sea consists of;
  • Air, which the winds and storms consist of;
  • Earth, which we call "the globe"[1] on account of its shape

There are four areas of the sky: east, west, south, north.[2] The sky is divided into five rings:

  • the arctic and antarctic, which are uninhabitable because of the excessive cold
  • the equinoctial, which the region called Catacecaumene[3] lies under and which is not inhabited because of the excessive heat
  • the brumalian and the solstitial, under which there is habitation (for they are the most temperate).

An elliptical ring with twelve constellations goes through these, within which the Sun makes an annual journey.

2. On the Twelve Constellations[edit]

There are twelve constellations in the sky.

  • The Ram[4] is favoured by Liber[5] because when he led an army to India through Libya, through dry sandy places in which there was a shortage of water and his army was afflicted with thirst, a ram showed them where there was water. Thus Ammon was named "of Jupiter" by Liber and he made a magnificent sanctuary for him on the spot where he found the water. This is nine miles from Egypt and Alexandria.[6] Because of this, he asked Jupiter that the ram be placed among the stars. Other people think that it is the ram which carried Helle and Phryxus.[7]
  • The Bull[8] is favoured by Jupiter; Jupiter got it from his brother Neptune as a favour. He appeared to human eyes in the form of a bull and also, on the order of Jupiter, a bull played with Europa, daughter of Agenor, in Sidonia, picked her up and carried her off to Crete.[9] Because of this, Jupiter honoured it with an immortal memorial in the stars.
  • The Twins,[10] who are called the Samothracian gods and whose story it is profane to utter except for those who preside at the ritual.[11] Other people say that they are Castor and Pollux, because these princes had kept the sea safe from pirates.[12] There are people who say they are Hercules and Theseus, who carried out similar labours.
  • The Crab,[13] Carcinus, got the favour of Juno, because, at her order, when Hercules had been sent to kill the Lernaean Hydra (which we call a serpent), the crab attacked Hercules' feet and tore at his ankles, causing him more discomfort than the serpent itself. Hercules found this pain exceptionally troublesome and, because of this deed, Juno honoured the crab with stars
  • The Lion,[14] Leon, which was brought up at Nemea by the will of Juno in order to kill Hercules, was sent to the Earth and hid for a long time in an Argive Cave. Hercules is said to have killed it with his friend Molorchus, from whom he first received his club, with which he killed the lion and after this he wore its pelt as a hood. Because of this deed, he began to be hated by Juno and she honoured the lion with the heavenly prize.
  • The Maid,[15] whom we call Justice, was among people, but when people began to sin, Jove placed her among the constellations. There are those who say that she is Erigone the Athenian daughter of Icarius; Liber gave wine to her father, so that he might give people pleasure: those whom he gave it to became drunk and stoned him to death. The dog which was with him saw its master's death and returned to Erigone howling, which she saw to be sad and unusual - worried, she set out with it. They came to the place where Icarius was lying. She saw the body of her father; with great lamentation, she buried him on Mount Hymettus. In the same place in fact, she hung herself with a noose. The dog lay at her feet for a long time and went without food, until, desperate for water, it threw itself into a well. Then Liber asked Jupiter, because they had died as a result of his command, for them to be placed among the course of the stars. Erigone is the Maid, but Icarius was called Arcturus (when this star rises, it causes continual storms), and the dog is the Dog Star.
  • The Scales,[16] which the Greeks call zygon, got the manly name[17] through the greatest mercy and justice; Stathmuchos[18] was given the name, because he is said to have first revealed the scales and the pound to humanity, which are considered especially useful by mortals. Thus he was counted among the number of the stars and was called the Scales.
  • The Scorpion,[19] which is said to have been born on Mount Pelinaeus on Chios to destroy Orion at the desire of Diana. But while Orion was hunting, he saw Diana and wanted to rape her. She threw down the scorpion which took his life. Jupiter put both the scorpion and Orion among the stars.
  • The Archer,[20], Crotos, was the son of the nurse of the Muses; the Muses always loved him, because he entertained them with applause and archery tricks. Others say that he is Chiron, because he was just and pious, learned and hospitable. Aesculapius[21] learnt medicine from him, Achilles the lyre and many other things.
  • The Goat-Horned,[22] whose name is Pan. At the time when Typhon lived in caves in Mount Taurus and came to Egypt for war, Pan transformed himself into a goat. Therefore, after the immortal gods had roperly punished Typhon, they decorated the sky with a Pan of stars as a memorial.
  • The Water-carrier,[23] who is thought to be Ganymedes;[24] is said to be Deucalion the Thessalian, who alone except for his wife Pyrrha escaped the greatest cataclysm. He was placed among the stars on account of his piety.
  • The Fish,[25] thus named because during the War with the Giants[26] Venus became frightened and transformed herself into a fish. For it is said also that, in the Euphrates River, the egg of a fish * * *[27] sat by a dove on the edge of the river and that the goddess, kind and sympathetic to people, hatched it for the good life. In memory of both of them, the Fish were placed among the stars.

3. On the Stars[edit]

Aside from the twelve constellations, the most important stars in the sky are:

  • The Seven Oxen (two: the big and the small),[28] which never sink and therefore rule the journeys of ships. One of these is called Cynosura, the other Bootes, also Arcturus
  • Orion, who obtained a half part of the sky through his scale.
  • Pleiades, which are called Virgiliae in Latin.
  • Hyades, which are called Singlets by us, whose rising and setting is observed by sailors and farmers.
  • The Dog Star, whose power is especially great at the Solstice.
  • There are seven particularly important stars in the sky: Saturn, Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, and Venus. They are called planetae by the Greeks, "wanderers" by us, because they travel according to their own judgement and peoples' fates are governed by their movements. Thus, they move in a direction opposite to that of the sky.

4. In which parts of the twelve winds the 12 constellations are[edit]

The Ram is in the apheliote wind,[29] the Bull in the caecia wind,[30] the Twins in the Aquilo wind,[31] the Crab in the Seven Oxen,[32] the Lion in the Thracian wind,[33] the Maid in the argestes wind,[34] the Scales in the zephyr wind,[35] the Scorpion in the African wind,[36] the Archer in South-and-African wind,[37] the Goat-Horned in the south wind, the Water-carrier in the eurus and notus wind,[38] the Fish in the eurus wind.[39]

5. On the Winds[edit]

Wind occurs as a result of the movement and flux of the air. But there are four main kinds:

  • eurus, apheliotes, and Vulturnian from the east;
  • From the west, zephyr, Corus, and Favonius;
  • Aquilo, boreas, and aparctias from the north;
  • notus, libs, and south from the south.

These are the four main kinds; other winds are special sub-types, such as the iapyx of the zephyr, which blows from the Iaphygian peninsula in Apulia;[40] the leuconotus of the notus, when it blows very calmly; the Circius of the Aquilo, when it blows violently through Gaul; likewise the Etesian winds, which blow in the summer on still days.

6. On Planet Earth[edit]

Planet Earth, which is under the sky, is divided into four areas. One part of it is that which we inhabit; another is opposite to this and those who inhabit it are called anticthones; the two of these areas below are located opposite these and the people who inhabit them are called antipodes. The part of Planet Earth which we inhabit is divided into three parts and their names are:

  • Asia, which is between the Tanais[41] and the Nile;
  • Libya, which is between the Nile and the Gulf of Gades;[42]
  • Europe, which is between the Strait[43] and the Tanais.

In Asia, the most famous peoples are: the Indians, the Chinese, the Persians, the Medians, the Parthians, the Arabs, the Bithynians, the Phrygians, the Cappadocians, the Cilicians, the Syrians, and the Lycians. In Europe, the most famous peoples are: the Scythians, the Sarmatians, the Germans, the Dacians, the Moesians, the Thracians, the Macedonians, the Dalmatians, the Pannonians, the Illyrians, the Greeks, the Italians, the Gauls, and the Spanish. In Libya, the most famous peoples are: the Ethiopians, the Moors, the Numidians, the Phoenicians, the Gaetulians, the Garamantes, the Nasamones, and the Egyptians. The most famous mountains on Planet Earth are: Caucasus in Scythia, Emodus in India,[44] Libanus in Syria,[45] Olympus in Macedonia, Hymettus in Attica, Taygetus in Lacedaemonia, Cithaeron and Helicon in Boeotia, Parnasos in Phocis, Acroceraunia in Epirus,[46] Maenalus in Arcadia, the Apennines in Italy, Eryx in Sicily, the Alps between Gaul and Italy, the Pyrenees between Gaul and Spain, Athlans in Africa,[47] Calpe in the Strait of the Ocean.[48] The most famous rivers on Planet Earth are: Indus, Ganges, and Hydaspes in India, Araxes in Armenia,[49] Thermodon and Phasis in Colchis[50] Tanais in Scythia,[41] Strymon and Hebrus in Thrace,[51] Sperchios in Thessaly,[52] Hermus and Pactolus the gold-bearers, Maeander and Caystrus in Lydia,[53] Cydnus in Cilicia,[54] Orontes in Syria, Simois and Xanthus in Phrygia, Eurotas in Lacedaemon, Alpheus in Elis, Ladon in Arcadia, Achelous and Inachus in Epirus, Savus and Danubius (which is also called Ister) in Moesia,[55] Eridanus and Tiberinus in Italy,[56] Timavus in Illyria,[57] Rhodanus in Gaul,[58] Hiberus and Baetis in Spain,[59] Bagrada in Numidia,[60] Triton in Gaetulia,[61] the Nile in Egypt, Tigris and Euphrates in Parthia, Rhenus in Germany.[62]

The most famous islands in Our Sea[63] are twelve: Sicily, Sardinia, Crete, Cypros, Euboea, Lesbos, Rhodes, the two Balaric islands, Ebusus,[64] Corsica, and Gades.[65] IN the ocean: in the east Taprobane,[66] in the west Brittannia,[67] in the north Thyle,[68] in the south the Blessed Islands.[69] In addition to these, there are in the Aegean Sea, the eleven Cyclades: Delos, Gyaros, Myconos, Andros, Paros, Olearos,[70] Tenos, Cythnos, Melos, Naxos, Donusa. In addition to these, there are uncountable Sporades. Of the rest, the most famous are Aegina, Salamina,[71] Coos,[72] Chios, Lemnos, and Samothrace. In the Ionian Sea, there are the Echinades, Strophades, Ithaca, Cephalenia, and Zacynthos. In the Adriatic there are around a thousand Crateae. In the Sicilian Sea, there are eight Aeolian islands. In the Gallic Sea, there are three Stoechades.[73] In the Syrtes, there are Cercina and Menix, which is also [called] Girba.[74]

7. On the Course of the Sea[edit]

The sea which bounds the world is called Ocean. This breaks into the land in four places: from the north is called the Caspian, from the east the Persian, from the south the Arabian (also called the Red Sea or the Erythraean), to the west is the Great Sea (also the Athlantic); which is traversed by the traffic of the whole human race. This enters at the Straits of Gades[75] between the two exceptionally famous mountains, Abina and Calpe, on account of the Columns set up by Hercules.[76] Then it floods very far and wide over the centre of Planet Earth and takes [various] names: the Balaeric Sea which washes against Spain; the Gallic which borders Gaul; the Ligustic which is watered by the Ligurians; the Tuscan, the Tyrrhenian (also called the Lower Sea) which surrounds the right side of Italy;[77] the Hadriatic (also called the Upper Sea), which surrounds the left side of Italy; the Sicilian Sea, which Sicily is in; the Cretan Sea, which the island of Crete is in; the Ionian and the Aegean, which surround Achaia (that is, the Peloponnese) so that they almost make it an island, but for the Isthmus which divides them; the Myrtoan and the Icarian, which are connected to the Aegean Sea (the former is named after Myrtilos, the latter after Icaros); the Pontic, which is watered by the great bay of Scythia; the Hellespontic, which passes through the jaws between two very famous cities, Sestos in Asia and Abydos in Europe; the Tanaitic, which Asia is washed by; the Egyptian Sea, named after Egypt; the Libyan Sea after Libya; the Syrtic is churned with alternating waves by the two Syrtes.

8. Wonders of the World. Wonders which are on Earth[edit]

  • In Apollonia in Athamantia,[78] is Mount Nymphaeum, five miles from the sea. In that place, there is fire and flames come out of the earth. In the forest, Pan's music is heard in the town. Also, under this mountain on the plain, there are lakes full of water; pitch and bitumen comes out of these; when you clap with your hands, the pitch rises up high and almost bubbles from the water.
  • In Ambracia in Epirus, Castor, Pollux and Helen have been painted on a wall by a local artist, and no one can ever find out who painted it.[79]
  • At Argos in Epirus, which is called Ippaton:[80] there is a great double columned bridge, which it is said that Medea ordered to be built. There, the rudders of the Argonauts' ship, which was undertaken,[81] have been painted. There is a temple of Jupiter Typhon, from which one can descend to the Underworld in order to cast lots; those who descend at this place are said to see Jupiter himself.
  • On Leucas,[82] there is a mountain, from which Sappho threw herself on account of a man. At the top of the mountain, there is a sanctuary of Apollo, where rites are done and when a man jumps down from there, he is immediately fished out by people in dinghies.
  • At Sicyon in Achaia, in the forum, there is a temple of Apollo. Within have been deposited: Agamemnon's shield and knife; Ulixes'[83] cloak and breastplate; Teucer's bow and arrows; Adrastus' box, which he deposited in which it is unknown what it is; but also the bronze pot, which Medea deposited, in which Pelias is said to have been cooked; also Palamedes' letters; Marsyas' pipes and skin; the oars of the Argonautus with both the rudders and the spar; the little cup with which Minerva cast her vote for Orestes... smeared with wax,[81] a robe of a parasite suitor,[84] which flies open if anyone breathes on it; and Penelope's loom. Oil streams rom the ground there.
  • At Argos in Achaia, there is a magnificently decorated Temple of Juno, which they call "inviolable."[85]
  • At Olympia, there is a noble Temple of Jupiter, where the athletes are initiated.
  • At Corinth, there is a giant rib of a whale by the sea, which a man cannot reach his arms around. In the same place there is a sanctuary of Venus, containing a marble vase of Lais.[86]
  • In Boeotia, there is a holy lake where Amphiaraus was swallowed up.[87] In this lake, a broken clay water pot hangs with a sherd placed inside it; but it is hung in such a way that it is not visible except when it is moved by the wind.
  • In Athens, there is a noble Temple of Minerva,[88] whose shield is placed at her left - she touches it with a finger. In the middle of this shield is an image of Daedalus which is attached in such a way that if anyone tries to remove the image from the shield, they destroy the whole work; for the artwork reaks apart. But the goddess herself holds a spear from the grass.
  • In Ilium, there is a square stone, where Cassandra had bound herself. If you touch it on the front, that is, or rub it, milk comes out, but if you rub another part of it similarly, blood comes out. But near the sea is the place which is called Rhoeteon; where the tumulus of Achilles and Patroclus is, and the river Scamandrus.
  • The sanctuary of Ephesian Diana is the most noble, largest, and most beautiful on Planet Earth; at the entrance, the marble monolithic posts at left and right are 20 cubits long,[89] by which rising above the temple are 140 thousand.[81]
  • In the Samian Temple of Juno, is a goblet made of ivy, with four large ram's heads on the brim with twisted horns of amazing size.
  • At Pergamon, there is a large marble altar, forty feet high with massive sculptures, it also contains a gigantomachy.[90]
  • On Iasos, there is a very beautiful marble statue of Diana, which stands under the divine sky, yet is not touched by water when it rains.
  • In the Bargylus[91] there is a sanctuary of Venus above the sea, where there is a lamp located on top of a candelabrum which shines on the sea under the divine sky, which the wind never blows out and the rain never puts out. And there is also an ancient Temple of Hercules, where a circular iron cage hangs from a column - in which it is said that the Sibyl was locked up. Whale bones lie there, like squared stones.
  • At Magnesia by the Sipylus,[92] there are four columns. Among these columns, there is an iron Victory, hanging free in the air without any chains, but whenever there is wind or rain, it is not moved.
  • There is a Temple of Diana at Ephesus, which an Amazon built. There also is a tomb of Icarus, snoring,[93] as if he were sleeping, of amazing size, made from brass and iron.
  • At Rhodes, a colossal statue of the Sun, with a height of ...[81] on top of a marble column with a quadriga; the column has, in fact, a height of a hundred cubits.[94]
  • On Cyprus, there is a bronze statue of Jupiter Olympius, with a face of gold, which Phidias made, with a height of one hundred and fifty cubits and a width of sixty cubits.[95]
  • At Ecbatana in Media,[96] is the house of King Cyrus,[97] built from bright and dark blocks of stone, bound together with gold. At that place there are columns with different colours and uncountable iron sheets, windows made from silver and roof tiles made from light green stone.
  • There is a wall in the middle of Babylon, which Memnon built[98] with cooked stone (that is, with lime) and with sulphur and iron mixed in where there are joints. Its thickness is 30 cubits, its height is 130 cubits, and its circuit is 30 miles.[99] Semiramis began this; her son completed it.[100]
  • The Pyramids in Egypt, which Agartus built. At this place, there is the Nile River,[101] made with bronze, braided for three hundred cubits,[102] its face made from glowing emerald, its arms from lots of ivory; and beasts are terrified by its appearance.
  • In Athens there is a statue of Jupiter Olympius, at Alexandria they worship the Nile River most of all.[103]

9. Ηοw many they say there are of Jupiter and the other gods and goddesses[edit]

There were three Jupiters:

  • The first, in Arcadia, was the son of Aether[104] and had the surname Aetherius, as a result. He begat the first Sol.[105]
  • The second, also in Arcadia, who is surnamed Saturnius, who begat Father Liber the inventor of wine, with Proserpina.
  • The third, in Crete, the son of Saturn and Ops,[106] is the one who is called the Best and Greatest.[107]

There were two Marses:

  • The first, born from Enopos[81] as Euhemerus says, is also our Mars (or Marspiter) and also Mars Enyus;
  • The second, born from Jupiter and Juno.

There were five Sols:

  • The first was Jupiter's son
  • The second was Hyperion's
  • The third was the Nile's son, to whom Egypt is sacred;
  • The fourth, who was born on Rhodes, whose son is Zmintheus;[108]
  • The fifth was Colchus' son, to whom Circe, Medea and Phaeton were born.

There were four Vulcans:

  • The first was born to Sky and Ops;[106]
  • The second was the son of the Nile;[109]
  • The third was son of Saturn and Juno;
  • The fourth was the son of Malta in Sicily.

Four Mercuries:

  • The first, the son of Sky and Day;
  • The second, the son of Jupiter and Cronia or Proserpina;
  • The third, the son of Cronius and Maia, who is the inventor of the lyre;[110]
  • The fourth, the son of Cyllenius, who taught letters and numbers to the Egyptians.[111]

Five Apollos:

  • The first, son of Vulcan and Minerva;[112]
  • The second, son of Corybas;[113]
  • The third, the son of Jupiter by Latona;[114]
  • The fourth, the son of Silenus, in Arcadia;
  • The fifth, the son of Ammon, was born in Libya.

Three Dianas:

  • The first was the daughter of Jupiter Cronius by Proserpina; she is the sister of Liber;
  • The second, daughter of Jupiter and Latona, the sister of Apollo;[115]
  • The third, who is called Ops, was born to Glauce.

Three Aesculapuses:

  • The first is named Apollo, son of Vulcan;
  • The second, son of Elatus;
  • The third, son of Aristetus and Alcippe.

Four Venuses:

  • The first is the daughter of Sky and Day;
  • The second, who was born from the foam, is said to be the daughter of Aether and Ocean;
  • The third, who married Vulcan, who had relations with Mars from which Cupid is said to have been born;[116]
  • The fourth, daughter of Cyprus and Syria, whom Adon has.

Five Minervas:

  • The first, daughter of Vulcan, whence the city of the Athenians;
  • The second, daughter of the Nile, whom the Egyptians worship;
  • The third, daughter of Jupiter, who devotes herself to military things;[117]
  • The fourth, daughter of the Sun, who invented chariots;
  • The fifth, daughter of Pallas and Titanis; she killed her father in order to protect her virginity, because of his lust for it, as a result, she is also called Pallas.

Five Libers:

  • The first, son of Jupiter and Proserpina; he was a farmer and inventor of wine; his sister is Ceres;
  • The second Liber, son of Melo[118] and Flora, in whose name is the River Granicus;
  • The third, son of Cabirus, who reigns in Asia;
  • The fourth, son of Saturnius and Semele * * *[81] they say.
  • The fifth, the son of Nisus and Thyona.

Six Herculeses:

  • The first, the son of Jupiter Aetherius;
  • The second, the son of the Nile, whom the Egyptians worship as first of all;
  • The third, whom the Hellenes call the founder of their place;[81]
  • The fourth, the son of Cronius and Cartere, whom the Carthaginians worship;[119]
  • The fifth, the son of Ioab,[120] who fought with the king of the Medians;
  • The sixth, the son of Jupiter by Alcmene, who lived in the Atlas Mountains.[121]

10. On Empires[edit]

From the beginning of the memory of time, there have been seven empires. The first who were in charge of things were the Assyrians, then the Medians, after that, the Persians, then the Lacedaemonians, then the Athenians, after whom came the Macedonians, and then the Romans.

11. Kings of the Assyrians[edit]

  • King Belus, son of Jupiter,[122] whose descendants by Ninus reigned over Asia, by Aegyptus over Libya, by Danaus over Europe.
  • King Ninus, who first brought almost the whole of Asia under his control with an army and founded the most brilliant city, named Ninos after himself.[123]
  • Samiramis, daughter of the nymph Dercetis, was raised by doves and was the wife of King Ninus, after whose death she expanded Ninus' kingdom through warfare; she also made an attempt on India in an insufficiently successful campaign. She established the most beautiful city which there ever was, Babylon, on the River Euphrates.
  • Sardanapallus, under whom the kingdom was destroyed as a result of his excessive softness and luxury. Rather than come into the power of his enemies, he drank poison with his wasted friends, threw down torches and burnt himself up with his palace.

12. Kings of the Medians[edit]

Arbaces was the first king. After the power of the Assyrians was overthrown, he transferred the luxury of Sardanapallus[81] and he ruled them very justly. Astyages was a brave and just man, who was defeated by Cyrus by means of tricks and the Kingdom of Media was destroyed.

13. Kings of the Persians[edit]

  • Cyrus was the bravest king. Once the larger part of Asia had been conquered, he would have burst into Europe too, but he was defeated and killed by Tomyris the Queen of the Scythians.
  • Cambyses was the vile son of Cyrus, who conquered Egypt and its king Amasis with 70 thousand warriors, invaded Ethiopia, lost the majority of his soldiers to hunger and returned having achieved nothing; but he founded a city there, called Meroe. Through the anger of the gods, because he had ordered Apis the sacred bull to be killed, he fell head-first off his horse onto his own sword and died.
  • King Darius was chosen out of seven Persians by the whinny of a horse, to receive the kingdom and crossed over into Europe with 270 thousand soldiers. He was defeated by the Athenians led by Miltiades at false[81] Marathon and withdrew.
  • Xerxes was the son of Darius. When his father had died, he crossed over into Europe with a fair number of ships and armed soldiers, having bridged the Hellespont and cut a channel through Mount Athos, but he did not accomplish anything else except burning Athens. He was defeated at sea by the Lacedaemonians and the Athenians and returned to Asia, where he was killed deceitfully by his own people.

14. Leaders and Kings of the Lacedaemonians[edit]

  • Eurysthenes and Procles were twins who led forth the family of the Heraclidae and first reigned over the kingdom of Sparta.
  • Lycurgus was the creator of the laws by which the Lacedaemonians were maintained as the leaders of Greece for seven hundred years.
  • Theopompus and Polydorus were the kings who waged the Messenian war for 20 years.
  • Othryades was a warlike man who inscribed the victory monument for the Messenian War, for which three hundred (that is a hundred and fifty) had competed, with his own blood.[124]
  • Tyrtaeus, who was sent as a joke by the Athenians during the Messenian War at the order of the Oracle of Apollo[125] to be a military leader and roused the spirits of the soldiers so much with his poems, that they achieved victory in that very long war.
  • Leondidas was the leader during the Persian War, who weakened the whole power of Persian war-making with three hundred Lacedaemonians at Thermopylae, by his death and that of his companions.
  • Pausanias, who, during the Persian War, completely defeated Xerxes' prefect Mardonius with infantry forces at the River Asopus in Boeotia; soon after, he was taken in by the king and then accused of bribery and sought asylum in the Temple of Minerva, where he starved to death.
  • Lysander was the leader who destroyed the Attic fleet which was then dominating the whole sea and imposed the 30 tyrants on the conquered Athenians.
  • Xanthippus was the bravest man of the Lacedaemonians, who, during the First Punic War, was sent to the Carthaginians and defeated Regulus.
  • Agesilaus, whose idea it was to fight in enemy territory rather than his own; thus he was sent into Asia and devastated it, but although he was looming over the kings, he was recalled and defeated the Athenians at Coronea. After this, he wept at Corinth because he had seen ten thousand Greeks killed and he was not willing to destory Corinth when he could have.

15. The most brilliant kings and leaders of the Athenians[edit]

  • Cecrops was the king who founded the city of Athens and he called the citizens Cecropides after himself; because he was indigenous, it is said in fables that he was a snake from the hips down.
  • Ericthonius was the king, for whom Celeus established the Eleusinian Mysteries, with the stranger Eumolpus as the priest, the virgin daughters as attendents, with Triptolemus as prefect of the fruits, who restored Greece when it was suffering from famine by sending around grain.
  • Pandion was the king whogave his daughters, Procne and Philomela to the kings of Thrace, in order to befriend the barbarous peoples with a marriage tie.
  • Theseus was the son of Aegeus, who killed the Minotaur.
  • Demophon was the son of Theseus, fought gainst Ilium with the Greeks.
  • Codrus was the king who sacrificed himself during the Peloponnesian War in obedience to the Oracle of Apollo for the health and safety of his fatherland.
  • Pisistratus, a strong and wise man, who espoused the populist cause against the leading men, established a tyranny, and administered it very justly.
  • Harmodius and Aristogiton, lower class men, who, when Pisistratus' sons Hippias and Hipparchus began to rule savagely, established a conspiracy and killed them, as a result of which divine honours were established for them as protectors.[126]
  • Miltiades was the general who defeated 80 thousand Persian soldiers of King Darius, led by Dates and Tisaphernes, on the plain of Marathon.
  • Aristides Dicaeos,[127] who lived up to his nickname in his behaviour and on account of this was punished with exile.
  • Cimon was the general during the Persian War who defeated Xerxes' land forces as well as his navy in Asia itself at the Eurymedon river in a single day.
  • Alcibiades was a general, an illustrious man in family, wealth, and ability, who was charged on account of the nocturnal mutilation of the herms and fled to the Lacedaemonians during the Peloponnesian War and, when he had brought the latter to superiority, he pitied his suffering countrymen and returned to his fatherland, where he was appointed general and made the Athenians victorious once more.
  • Thrasybulus, who overthrew the thirty Lacedaemonian magistrates by means of a conspiracy, since their rule had become that of a raging tyranny, and returned freedom to the Athenians.
  • Conon was the general who defeated all the forces of the Lacedaemonians at Cnidus and restored control of the sea to Athens.
  • Dion, who with eight merchant ships expelled Dionysius the King of Sicily, who had a hundred warships from his kingdom, while he was away in Italy and occupied Syracuse.[128]
  • Iphicrates a very experienced man in military matters, who made weapons easier to handle in weight and size.
  • Phocion, who was a man nicknamed "the Good" and could not be convinced by Philip to come over to his side by any amount of money; who said, when his friends advised him to think of his children, that "if they are good, this little farm will be enough for them; if they are bad, nothing will."
  • Chabrias was the general who taught a soldier to fight in the manner of a gladiator, added Cyprus, Naxos and all the Asian islands to Athens, and preferred to die in the naval battle at Chios than to discard his weapons and swim away.
  • Demetrius of Phalerum, who was thought to have been a good man on account of his extraordinary justice, and was therefore honoured with 300 statues, which the dedicated to him for their freedom in the public space.

16. Kings of the Macedonians[edit]

  • Philip, son of Amyntas,[129] was the first of the Macedonians to grab Thrace and place it under his own control; and he wanted to cross over to Asia, but right in the midst of the preparations for this war he was killed in the theatre by Pausanias.
  • Alexander, son of Philip and Olympias[130] set out from Pella in Macedon with 40,000 soldiers, crossed over into Asia and defeated King Darius of the Persians, first at the River Granicus, then at Issus in Cilicia, and a third time at Arbela[131] - in three battles he defeated three hundred thousand infantry, fifty thousand cavalry, two thousand scythed chariots. He soon brought the king of the Indians and all the peoples of Asia under his control and captured the most noble cities of Asia: Sardes, Bactra, Susa, Babylonia. At the last of these he died (whether from excessive drinking or from poison is unclear), although before that he had travelled through Africa all the way to Jupiter Ammon[132] and become the first of all men to sail on the Ocean.[133]
  • Philip, who reigned over Macedonia in the seventh place after Alexander,[134] invaded Greece and ruled it savagely until he was defeated by Sulpicius the Consul in Phocis, then by Flaminius[135] in Macedonia Thessaly at Cynocephalae, where he was punished by handing over his son Demetrius as a hostage and part of his kingdom.
  • Perses, son of Philip,[136] when with massive Macedonian armies and[81] when he had made an attack on Greece, was defeated with empty models of elephants by Marcius the Consul at the Ascyris Marsh, threw his treasuries into the sea, and fled; soon he had been chased from Macedonia altogether by Aemilius Paulus and sought asylum on Samothrace. From there, after promises had been made, he surrendered himself to Paulus, was led before his chariot in a triumph and then grew old in free custody at Albanus.[137]
  • Pseudo-Philip was a commoner and a degenerate man, who used his similar appearance to Philip to persuade people that he was his son and led the Macedonians in war, but as disorder broke out, he was captured and sent under guard to Rome, where he escaped from custody, roused up Macedonia again and took the war to Thrace. In the citadel of the kingdom, dressed in a military cloak, he gave legal judgements. Soon he was defeated by Caecilius Metellus in a massive battle and fled into Thrace, but he was betrayed by the kings and taken away for the triumph.

17. Kings and Generals of the Romans[edit]

  • Romulus, who founded the city.
  • Numa Pompilius, who established the sacred things.
  • Tullus Hostilius, who destroyed Alba.
  • Ancus Marcius, who passed many laws and established the colony of Ostia.[138]
  • Priscus Tarquinius, who decorated the magistrates with insignia.
  • Servius Tullius, who held the first census.
  • Tarquinius the Proud, who was expelled from the kingship for excessive pride.

18. The Most Brilliant Generals of the Romans[edit]

  • Brutus, who killed his own sons for the sake of public freedom.
  • Valerius Publicola, who led the war against the Tarquinii for that same freedom and embiggened the people by passing the law of freedom.
  • Mallius Torquatus, who killed his own son in order to maintain discipline on campaign.
  • Quinctius Cincinnatus (also called Serranus), on whom the Dictatorship was conferred while he was ploughing.
  • Camillus, who destroyed the race of the Senones (Gauls) and restored the City, which had been burnt by them.
  • Two Fabii, one of whom defeated the Etruscans, Samnites, Umbrians, and Gauls in a single battle and cleansed the freedmen out of the tribes, and was therefore nicknamed "Maximus."[139] The other Fabius defeated Hannibal by delaying[140] and was therefore nicknamed "Cunctator."[141]
  • Papirius Cursor: when the Samnites sent the Romans under the yoke for fighting, he defeated them and repaid the shame; because of his speed, he was called "Cursor".[142]
  • Curius: who was cooking turnips on the hearth, said to the men offering [him lots of money] "I would prefer to stick with my earthenware and command those who have gold."
  • Fabricius Luscinus, who removed Cornelius Rufinus (the former consul) from the Senate after condemning him of luxury and greed, because he possessed ten pounds of silver.
  • Claudius Marcellus, who first defeated Hannibal in battle in Campania; he also taught the cavalry how to retreat in battle without fleeing.
  • Two Scipiones, the older of whom was Africanus, who brought the war against Hannibal to an end and even did this in Africa. The other, Scipio, the younger one, is Numantius, who demolished Carthage and Numantian, thereby subduing Africa and Hispania.
  • Quintus Nero, who drew out Hasdrubal, when he was coming from Hispania to Hannibal who was stuck in Apulia, and eliminated his forces in a single day at the Metaurus River - if Hasdrubal had joined up with Hannibal, it cannot be doubted the Roman people would not have been a match for them.
  • Paulus, who had conquered Macedonia, freed Greece and brought back the most opulent triumph, when he lost his two sons during the very days of the triumph, but said publically that he was grateful to fate, because it had attacked his own house rather than the Republic.
  • Two Metelli, one of whom was called Macedonicus because he defeated the Macedonians and he captured Contrebia, the unconquerable city in Hispania, by ordering his soldiers to write their wills and forbidding them to return home until they had won. The other was Numidicus because he defeated the Numidians, who, when Apuleius the Tribune of the Plebs passed laws which were harmful to the Republic and the whole Senate had sworn to follow them, preferred to go into exile than to swear the oath. His son was nicknamed "Pius",[143] because he followed his father into exile.
  • Gaius Marius, who overcame the Numidians in Africa, the Cimbri and Teutones in Gaul, walking in the soldiers' shoes, and achieved seven consulships.
  • Sylla,[144] who was the first to attack the Roman Empire in a civil war and gain complete control over it, and the only one to give up power.
  • Sertorius, who was outlawed by Sylla and fled into exile, and gained control of almost the whole of Hispania in a very short time and was always unconquerable by adverse fortune.
  • Lucullus, who gained the greatest wealth from the spoils of the Province of Asia and was exceptionally keen on buildings and paintings.
  • Pompey, who conquered the Armenians under King Tigranes, the Ponticans under King Mithridates, the Cilicias who were dominating the whole sea within forty days, and traversed the greater part of Asia between the Caspian Ocean and the Red Sea with his victories and triumphs.
  • Gaius Caesar,[145] who conquered the Gauls and the Germanies and was the first of the Romans to sail on the Ocean, in which he found and conquered Brittannia.
  • Julius Caesar Augustus, who brought peace to all the provinces, set up armies throughout the whole world, and organised the Roman Empire; since his establishment of it, the eternal dictatorship of the Caesars has held dominion.

19. Romans who were distinguished statesmen[edit]

  • Menenius Agrippa, who stopped the people from revolting and conciliated them with the Senate.
  • Appius the Blind, who prevented peace with Pyrrhus, so that the people, who were not willing to obey his men would not be ruled by foreign kings.
  • Tiberius Gracchus, who did not allow Scipio Asiaticus to be taken to prison by the tribunes, even though he was a personal enemy, because he said that it was not right for Scipio to be held in he same place where the men captured and bound by him had been held. He is the father of the Gracchi who were killed during their tribunates when they caused violent disorder with their agrarian laws.
  • Decimus Brutus Callaicus, who killed Gracchus, his son-in-law, who had stirred up civil strife in the Republic when Opimius was consul, through his agrarian laws.
  • Marcus Brutus, who joined Pompey's party, then was rehabilitated by Caesar and then plotted his death, because he seemed to be seeking the title of king.
  • Livius Drusus, who enjoyed the greatest favour of the Roman people when the agrarian laws were passed, but was ambushed and killed by the consul Philippus in his own house, to prevent him from accomplishing what he had promised.
  • Lutatius Catulus, who expelled Lepidus from Italy when he sought to rescind the acts of Sylla with an army he had gathered and was the only man to end a civil war without bloodshed.
  • Cato the Censor, who never ceased to censure wrongdoers as long as he lived no matter how many times he himself was censured. He was the most skilled at everything and, according to Sallustius Crispus,[146] was the most eloquent member of the Roman race.
  • Cato the Praetor, who sided with Pompey in the Civil War and preferred to die than to survive that servant of the Republic.
  • Scaurus, who forebade his son to come into his sight because he had deserted during the Cimbric War.
  • Scipio Nasica, who was not considered to be consul because he was not inaugurated correctly, so he abdicated the consulship himself and refused the triumphal procession granted to him by the Senate for conquering the Dalmatians and tore down any statues of himself which had been set up in public, in accordance with the censure. He declared in the Senate that Carthage should not be destroyed and for this reason he was judged to be the best.
  • Cornelius Cethegus, who judged that his brother Cethegus should be condemned to death for conspiring with Catiline.
  • Tullius Cicero, who defeated Catiline's conspiracy most forcefully in his consulship.

20. Those who sacrificed themselves for the common good[edit]

  • The Horatius triplets, who fought with the Curiati of Alba for ultimate power.
  • The three hundred Fabii who, although all of patrician ancestry, demanded that they in particular be enrolled in the Veiian War.
  • Mucius Cordus, who placed his hands in fire.
  • Horatius the One-eyed, who cut loose the bridge over the Tiber and swam across in armour.
  • Three hundred under Calpurnius Flamma led against the Carthaginians, who freed an army of the Roman people in the woods of Sicily at the cost of their lives, so that they wholly equaled the glory of the 300 Lacedaemonians at Thermopylae.
  • Two Decii, one of whom sacrificed himself in the Latin War, the other in the Samnite War.
  • Fabius the Pontifex who sacrificed himself and the other elders, when the City was burnt by the Gallic Senones.
  • Regulus who prefered to suffer Carthaginian torture than to make an unfavourable peace with them or to break a legally sworn oath.
  • Curtius who threw himself into a hole in the earth when it was declared by an oracle that this would be best for the City of Rome.
  • Spurius Postumius who was sent under the yoke with his army by Pontius Telesinus, the leader of the Samnites, was the author of a treaty which had to be violated and decided that he himself should be handed over to the enemy.
  • Gaius Metellus, pontifex, who carried the Palladium out of the Temple of Vesta when it was on fire and lost his sight.

21. Those who won the Spolia Opima[edit]

  • Romulus from Acron, King of the Caeninenses.
  • Cossus Cornelius from Lars Tolumnius, King of the Veientines
  • Claudius Marcellus from Viridomarus, King of the Gauls.

22. Those who were called by their enemies to fight hand-to-hand[edit]

  • Manlius Torquatus, who ripped a torque from a Gaul and wore it round his own neck.
  • Valerius Corvinus, who was challenged by a Gaul; when he was fighting, a raven landed on his helmet and terrified the enemy.
  • Scipio Aemilianus, when he was a legate under Lucullus the general, killed a barbarian who challenged him at Intercatia, a city of the Vaccaei.
  • Lucius Opimius, under the command of Lutatius Catulus the consul in the Tridentine Forest, killed a Cimbrian who challenged him.

23. Those who received nicknames for great deeds[edit]

Those who conquered people for the Romans:

  • Scipio Africanus, Scipio Numantinus, Scipio Asiaticus, Mummius Achaicus, Servilius Isauricus, Brutus Callaecius, Paulus Macedonicus, Metellus Creticus, Caesar German⟨ic⟩us, Caesar Dacicus.[147]

24. How many famous Scipiones there are, who received nicknames for great deeds[edit]

  • Scipio the elder, Africanus, who defeated Hannibal.
  • Scipio the younger, Numantius, who destroyed Numantia and Carthage.
  • Scipio Asiaticus, who triumphed over Antiochus.
  • Scipio Nasica, who was judged to be the best man by the Senate.
  • Scipio, who restored the faction after Pompey was killed, and after he was defeated, killed himself.

25. [Secessions of the Plebs][edit]

There have been four secessions of the plebs from the fathers:

  • The first secession took place because of the unrestrained actions of the moneylenders, in which the plebs armed themselves and withdrew to the ⟨sacred⟩ mountain;
  • The second secesson took place because of the unrestrained actions of the decemvirs, in which, after killing his daughter, Virginius surrounded Appius and his whole faction on the Aventine Hill and ensured that, once the magistrate had resigned, the accused men were condemned and punished with various penalties;
  • The third secession took place because of marriage rules, in order that plebs might marry patricians; Canuleius whipped it up on the Janiculum Hill;
  • The fourth secession took place in the forum because of magistracies, in order that plebs might become consuls; Sulpicius Stolo whipped it up.

26. [Riots in the City][edit]

There have been four riots in the City:

  • First was the riot of Tiberius Gracchus, whom Scipio Nasica crushed on the Capitoline, when he altered the condition of the community through laws about judges and farms;
  • Second was the riot of ⟨C.⟩ Gracchus, his brother, who had excited new disorder on account of similar distributions of property and whom Opimius the consul and Decimus Brutus Callaecus, his son-in-law, crushed on the Aventine Hill along with the slaves who had been gathered by the promise of freedom;
  • Third was the riot of Apuleius Saturninus, tribune of the plebs, and Glaucia the consul,[148] who broke up the assembly in the field[149] with a massacre. Marius pursued them to the Capitolium, where he besieged them and saw to it that they would be executed with clubs and rocks.
  • Fourth was the riot of Livius Drusus and Quintus Caepio, when the one claimed to be liberating the Senate and the other the equestrian order, but it was principally a reason for disorder to be stirred up, since Drusus was promising citizenship to all Italians, but then he was killed in his house by Philippus the consul.

27. Those who initiated evil schemes against the fatherland[edit]

  • Coriolanus was sent into exile because of an especially bitter harvest and brought up an army of Volsci in order to conquer the fatherland, but was defeated by the entreaties of his mother Veturia and then was slain by his own army.
  • [Marcus] Maelius, when he seemed to be seeking royal status by means of a corn distribution, was killed at the rostra by the Master of the Horse on the order of Quinctius Cincinnatus the dictator.
  • Spurius, when he was creating a faction and seeking domination through agrarian laws, * * *
  • Manlius Capitolinus, when he freed debtors with money, was suspected of seeking royal status and was thrown off the Tarpeian Rock.
  • Catiline, when he conspired to murder the senate, to burn the City, to plunder the treaury and sought the aid of the Allobroges in this crime, was accused by Cicero in the Senate and defeated in battle by Antonius in Apulia.

28. Which peoples the Roman people have joined battle with and for what reasons[edit]

  • The Roman people under Romulus fought with the Sabines first on account of the stolen women; under Tullus with the people of Alba * * *
  • Pontius Telesinus, leader of the Samnites, who sent the Romans under the yoke at Caudine Forks.
  • Pyrrhus, King of the Epirotes, who waged war with the Romans on behalf of the Tarantines, devastated Campania and came within twenty miles of the City, but shortly after he was defeated by Curius and Fabricius and withdrew to his fatherland and when he had brought Achaia under his control by force, he took Macedonia too from King Antigonus, but while he was conquering Argos he was killed. Of all the Greeks, he was the wisest and the most experienced in military discipline.
  • Hannibal, who accompanied his father to Hispania when he was nine, became commander when he was less than 25, conquered Hispania within three years. Then, by the destruction of Saguntum, he broke the treaty and came over the Pyreanees and the Alps into Italy. He overcame Scipio ⟨at⟩ Ticinum, Tiberius Claudius at Trebia, Flaminius at Trasimene, Paulus and Varro at Cannae, Gracchus in Lucania, and Marcellus in Campania. * * *

29. What alterations the state of the Roman people has undergone[edit]

Initially, the Roman people were under kings. Then, because of the arrogance of Tarquinius and the sexual violence against Lucretia, the kings were expelled and the people entrusted their protection to the consuls, praetors, and tribunes of the plebs. Then the people were shaken by the sedition of the tribunes and all the magistrates resigned, so they organised decemvirs for the purpose of making laws and securing the Republic. The people detested their domination and license and returned to consuls once more, until civil war arose between Caesar and Pompey and, with freedom suppressed by force, everything was brought under the control of a single Caesar.[150] Since then, the eternal dictatorship of the Caesars has held dominion.

30. The beginning of the kingdom[151] of Mithridates[edit]

Cyrus, King of the Persians, first took hegemony from the Medians; he left two sons, Cambyses and Smerdes. When their father died, Cambyses became king because he was the elder. He ⟨dreamt⟩ that Smerdes sat on the throne and touched the sky with his head and organised for him to be killed. Then, when he was returning from Aethiopia because his plans had been thwarted by famine, he came to ⟨Memphis⟩ in Egypt and noticed that the inhabitants of this place were celebrating. He decided to attack them for his adverse fortune, wounded Apis in the thigh and it died from the wound. Meanwhile, a magician called Smerdes, brother of Patibiata, took advantage of his name and similarity of appearance in order to claim that he was the son of Cyrus and took over the Persian kingdom. When this was announced to ⟨Camby⟩ses, he hurried to return to the fatherland and forgot to place the sword with which he had killed Apis in its sheath. When he attempted to take action, he wounded his thigh in the same exact place where he had wounded Apis. He died from this wound within a few days. A clear message about his death subsequently came into Persia. Potanes instructed Phaedyma, his daughter, with whom Smerdes had relations, that when he was asleep she should check whether he had ears hidden under his hair; for he knew that the ears of Smerdes the magician had been cut off by Cyrus. She confirmed that Smerdes was an imposter. Then the seven most noble Persians conspired together; their names were: Potanes, Hydarnes, Aspathines, Saphernes, Megaboius, Gobries, Darius. After Smerdes the magician had been killed, they decided that the one of them whose horse neighed first at a location which they would choose would reign over them thereafter (with Potanes excepted). Then Hiberes, Darius' groom, led his master's horse to the pre-selected place; he hid in another location * * * then Darius' horse gave a massive neigh. So Darius obtained the kingdom.[152] From him Artabazes traced his ancestry and he was the founder of Mithridates' kingdom, as Sallustius Crispus confirms.[153]

31. Kings of the Parthians[edit]

  • Seleucus was a friend of Alexander the Great; after the death of the latter's brother Arrhida⟨eus⟩, he was placed in charge of Babylon and brought the neighbouring peoples under his control (as a result he was calle Nicator)[154] and he founded three very great cities: Antioch, Seleucia, and Laodicia.
  • Arsaces, exceptional in appearance and valour, whose descendants were called the Arascids. He made peace with general Sulla.
  • Orodes, who broke the treaty with Gnaeus Pompey ⟨and⟩ destroyed Crassus with his legionaries in a grievous battle at Carrhae.
  • Pacorus, who sent his son of the same name into Syria, in order to ravage the Roman provinces and was killed by Ventidius, legate of Julius Caesar.

32. Kings of Cappadocia and Armenia[155][edit]

  • Tigranes, who is mentioned elsewhere, who completely subjugated [something?] in the third Punic War under the consul Mancinus and Scipio Aemilianus.[156]
  • The handsome king of Armenia * * * who lost his army to storm and blizzard after he had made an attack on Greece and burnt the temple of Pythian Apollo. * * *
  • Polycrates, king of Cappadocia,[157] who dreamt that he burnt the Sun and Moon and was killed by a prefect of King Darius.
  • Epaminon⟨das⟩ his son the king * * * who Thebes in Greece[158] * * * he prevailed in battle.
  • Periandrus * * * king * * * who reigned over Corinth. He conquered everything on land and sea for the Romans.[159]
  • Ti⟨m⟩oleon, who killed his brother when he was reigning over Corinth; he expelled Dionysius, king of Syria[160] and did not accept the kingdom when it was offered to him, but even demolished the citadel. When he heard an insult shouted at him he said: Everything I did in my whole life, I did so that we all could be free.[161]

33. Kings of Asia and Pergamum[edit]

  • Eumenes of Cardia, Philip's * * * Alexander's most bellicose shield-bearer, but he employed his good fortune too little, yet was so terrible that while he was living no one ared to call themselves "king".
  • Antiochus, ⟨who⟩ has is mentioned elsewhere.
  • Another Eumenes, who helped the Romans in the Macedonian War with his army.
  • Attalus, who often fought for the Romans; for he made that Roman people his heir in his will.

34. Kings of Pontus and Bithynia[edit]

  • Pharnaces, King of Bithynia, son of Mithridates, who in the civil war which was waged in Pharsalia, who invaded Syria with his father's [something], and on the arrival of Caesar, before he had actually encounter him, he was defeated by fear of his name and fled to Pontus.
  • Prusias, King and friend of the Roman people. Hannibal fled to him after Antiochus was defeated and, when he was demanded from the king by legates, he freed himself with poison.[162]
  • Nicomedes, ally and friend of the Roman people, who was Caesar's friend when the latter was young. When he died, he too made the Roman people his heir in his will.

35. Kings of Alexandria[edit]

After the death of Alexander of Macedon, there reigned at Alexandria, over Egypt, many brilliant men named Ptolemy.

  • Ptolemy Soter who protected Alexander at Oxydracaey holding his shield over him.
  • Ptolemy Philadelphus, his son, a very learned man who wrote many Greek books.
  • Ptolemy Euergetes, who defeated the Rhodians with a massive fleet.
  • Ptolemy Physcon, who killed rioters in the theatre with archers and dealt with others using fire. His son, the Cypriot, waged many wars for the Romans against the Garamantae and the Indians.[163]
  • Ptolemy, called the orphan, who received Pompey from the senate as a legal guardian until he reached adulthood and subsequently was killed by Pothinus in a civil war.[164]

36. Leaders and Kings of the Carthaginians[edit]

  • Hanno and Mago who defeated Cornelius the consul at Liparae in the ⟨first⟩ Punic War.[165]
  • Hamilcar, who was surnamed Boccor, brought the majority of Hispania under Carthaginian control in the first Punic war and left four sons: Hasdrubal, Hannibal, Hamilcar, and Mago.[166]
  • Hasdrubal, brother of Hannibal, who came from Hispania in the Second Punic War with massive forces, but was polished off by Claudius Nero before he could link up with his brother.[167]

37. Kings of Numidia[edit]

  • Syphax, whom Scipio Africanus defeated and paraded in his triumph; he installed Masinissa in his kingdom.
  • Masinissa, the king who aided Scipio and Syphax against Carthage with cavalry; for this he was given a share of his ally's booty and he reigned over Numidia.
  • Jugurtha, who is mentioned elsewhere.

38. Kings of Mauretania[edit]

  • Juba, the king who defeated Curio the legate of Caesar; shortly afterwards, when Pompey was killed, he tried to tie himself to Cato and Scipio's party, when he had received them into his kingdom, after a magnificent feast he let himself to be killed.[168]
  • Juba, a very learned king, who reigned at the order of Caesar Augustus and founded the very magnificent city of Caesarea.[169]

39. Who took up arms against the Roman people[edit]

  • Tatius, king of the Sabines, who occupied the Tarpeian Rock, contended with Romulus in the forum itself and made peace with Romulus after the intervention of the Sabine women.
  • Mettius Fuffetius, King of the Albans, who broke the treaty [with the Romans] and abandoned them against the Fidenatans[170] and at the order of Tullus Hostilius he was tied to a chariot and torn apart by the horses which were driven in opposite directions.
  • Porsenna, King of the Etruscans, who besieged the Romans on the Janiculum hill and for the sake of the Tarquinii * * *
  • Tiridates, who was defeated by Corbulo, a man of consular rank and then was restored.[171]

40. [Roman Civil Wars][edit]

Four civil wars have taken place in the City between the Romans.

  • The first civil war was stirred up by Sulpicius the tribune, because Sulla did not want the Mithridatic province, which he had taken for himself, to be transferred to Marius.
  • The second war was Lepidus against Catulus, on account of his fear that Sicily would be conquered.
  • The third war was Caesar and Pompey: The pretext (more than the cause) of the war was the consulship of Caesar which was refused by the Senate, really it was the ambition and desire to hold power of both sides. For when Caesar ought to have dismissed his army and come into the city, according to the customs and law of the ancestors, and instructed the senate on the things he had done and thus to have received a consulship, he pretended that he was afraid because of Pompey and refused to dismiss his army unless his candidacy in the consular elections was recognised despite his absence [from Rome]. Because of this, he was judged an enemy by the Senate and he decided to claim it through war. And thus he gained not just a consulship and a triumph, he brought control of the whole Roman people under his power.
  • The fourth war was Caesar Augustus against multiple leaders: against Pompey the Younger, who sought to regain his father's property; shortly after against Cassius and Brutus, in vengeance for killing his father; then against Antony and Cleopatra, who brought a final war upon the fatherland.

41. [Types of war][edit]

There are four types of war:

  • National, which are waged against foreigners
  • Social, which [are waged against allies], like the Romans against the Latins, the Athenians against the Lacedaemonians
  • Servile, which the Romans waged against fugitive slaves and against their leaders - Spartacus, Crixus, and Oenomaus
  • Civil, which they fight amongst themselves, just as Marius and Sulla, Caesar and Pompey, Augustus and Antony.

42. Course of the Marian War[edit]

Marius' insatiable lust for honour attempted to snatch the Pontic province which had been assigned to Sylla, by means of a proposal made by Sulpicius, the Tribune of the Plebs. Sylla was indignant and immediately rushed to his army and moved it against the City, invaded the fatherland and occupied the Capitoline. The Senate was overcome by this terror and outlawed Marius and his whole faction. While Sylla made his way to Asia, Marius fled into exile and initially hid in the swamp at Minturnae, then he was caught and went to gaol. Meanwhile, Cinna and Octavius in the city on account of * * *. When this event was reported, Marius returned and brought Cinna with him. After the Octavian party had been defeated seven times and he had been appointed consul, he befouled the whole city with savage murders. Meanwhile, Sylla had defeated Mithridates and headed back to the City, finding nearly the whole of Italy in arms under young Marius, son of Marius. But he wrecked all of his forces at Sacriportus in Etruria and at Collina Porta and slaughtered the rest of his opponents when they gathered to surrender themselves at the Villa Publica. He listed those who escaped on boards with law permitting them to be killed.

43. Course of the War between Caesar and Pompey[edit]

Caesar, Pompey and Crassus made an alliance and shared the Roman empire between themselves: Caesar had the Gallic army, Crassus the Syrian army, Pompey relied on his men to dominated the Senate. After Crassus died among the Parthians * * * Barbarus Asculanus, Quintus Lutatius Catulus.

44. [On the Macedonian War][edit]

The Roman people waged war with the Macedonians three times: under Consul Flamininus, they defeated King Philip, under Paulus, Philip's son Perses, under Metellus Macedonicus the False Philip. The cause of the first war was the Greeks' complaints about injuries received from the Macedonians, the cause of the second was Perses' breach of the treaty established by his father; the cause of the third was the arrival of the False Philip who fraudulently bore the name of the Macedonian kings.

45. Which wars * * *[172][edit]

  • In the Etruscan War, King Porsenna besieged the Janiculum.
  • In the Gallic War, the Gallic Senones destroyed the army at Alia, burnt the City, and besieged the Capitoline.
  • In the Tarentine War, Pyrrhus ravaged the whole of Campania and came within twenty miles [of Rome];
  • In the Puncic War, Hannibal slaughtered an army at Cannae and encamped three miles [from Rome];
  • In the Cimbric War, the Cimbri captured the Tridentine Alps;[173]
  • In the Slave War, Spartacus, Crixus, and Oenomaus the Gladiators ravaged nearly ⟨all of⟩ Italy, and were advancing to burn the City when they were crushed in Lucania by Crassus, in Etruria by Pompey.[174]

46. On the Three Punic Wars[edit]

The Roman people contended with the Carthaginians ⟨three times⟩.

  • The First Punic war was waged with naval forces. The cause presented for the conflict was twofold: firstly because the Carthaginians had aided the Tarentines and secondly the Mamertines had asked for aid against the Carthaginians. However, the true prize was possession of the very fertile islands of Sicily and Sardinia. Appius Claudius took war to the Strait of Sicily, Manlius and Regulus were victorious in Africa itself; Duillius the Consul at the Lipari islands and Lutatius Catulus at the Aegetian islands destroyed the marine forces of the enemy.
  • The Second Punic War was long and the bloodiest of all. The cause was that Hannibal had breached the treaty at Saguntum. The first battle of this war was at Ticinum and Scipio was wounded, but his son Publius Scipio who was not yet an adult protected and rescued him. In the second battle at Trebia, Flaccus the consul was wounded. In the third at Trasimenem, Flaminius' army was destroyed. In the fourth at Cannae, two armies were eliminated - Paulus the consul was killed, Terentius Varro fled. After that, however, four generals of the Punic War won glory for themselves: Fabius the Hesitator, who broke Hannibal when he was threatening to destroy the city by delaying; Marcellus, who first resisted Hannibal at Nola and completely massacred his front line when it turned to flee; Claudius Nero, who caught Hasdrubal when he was coming from Hispania with massive forces before he could join up with Hannibal and defeated him in a massive battle; * * *[175]
  • The Third Punic War was greater in glory than toil. For the destruction of Carthage that had been begun by Manlius the Consul was completed by Scipio Aemilianus [and] Carthage was burnt and all forces in Africa were crushed forever, because, contrary to the peace treaty, the Carthaginians had repaired their fleets and bore arms to their borders.

47. Up to the reign of Emperor Trajan, who was conquered and by which general[edit]

  • Through Flamini⟨n⟩us the Consul [the Roman people] conquered the Macedonians.
  • Through Paulus the Consul, [the Macedonians again], since they had rebelled under king Perses.
  • Through the Scipiones Africani, the Carthaginians.
  • Through Scipio [Asiaticus] they defeated King Antiochus in Syria.
  • Through Scipio Aemilianus, the Celtiberians and Numantia.
  • Through the same Scipio, Lusitania and general Viriathus.
  • Through Decimus Brutus, the Gallaecians.
  • Through Mummius, the Achaian League, Corinth and the Achaeans.
  • Through Fulvius Nobilior, the Aetolians and Ambracia.
  • Through Marius, the Numidians and Jugurtha.
  • Through that same Marius, the Cimbri and the Teutones.
  • Through Sylla, Pontus and Mithridates.
  • Through Lucullus, [Pontus again and Mithridates
  • Through Pompey], Pontus yet again and Mithridates, also the Cilician pirates and the Armenians with King Tigranes, and most Asian peoples. For under this general, [the Roman empire] reached all the way to the Indian Ocean and the Red Sea.[176]
  • Through Gaius Caesar, the Gauls, the Germanias, and Britain.[177]
  • Through Caesar Augustus, Dalmatia, the Pannonians, the Illyrians, the Egyptians, the Germans, the Cantabrians, and [the Romans] pacified the whole world, except for the Indians, Parthians, Sarmatians, and the Dacians, because fortune saved these people for the triumphs of Emperor Trajan.[178]

48. On Assemblies[179][edit]

Assemblies are named from the assembled crowd and are attended when the patricians and the classes are summoned to vote in order to appoint magistracies and priests. But the number of assemblies is threefold: the curiate assembly, the tribal assembly, and the centuriate assembly, which are named because they are arranged by curiae, tribes, [and centuries] respectively.[180] If it should be a traditional and customary thing about which the people * * *, it is carried out in the curiate assembly; if it is major, then in the tribal assembly; if it is of the greatest risk, then the infantry is summoned to vote and this is called the Centuriate assembly.

49. On the divisions of the Roman people[edit]

  • The oldest division of the Roman people is the threefold division which Romulus established: king, Senate, and populace. That populus was diided into three tribes: Titienses, Luceres, and Ramnes.
  • The second division of the Roman people took place under King Servius Tullius, who divided it into centuriate classes and instituted the census for when change occurred, so that the best and richest people would do best in elections.
  • The third division is between patrons and clients, in which inferiors entrust themselves to the faith of their superiors.

50. On Constitutions[edit]

There are three kinds of constitution: rule by kings, by the best men, and by the People. For some are accustomed to be under the control of kings, like Seleucia of the Parthians, or under the control of a Senate, like Massilia in Gaul, or they rule themselves, like the Athenians. There is a fourth kind, which the Romans invented, in order to make a single system from these three: for the consuls have the power of kings, the highest matters of public debate take place in the Senate, and the populace have the power of voters.[181]


  1. The usual Latin term is orbis terrarum, "the globe of lands"
  2. Literally: rising, setting, noon, the Seven Oxen
  3. Greek for "scorched"
  4. i.e. Ares
  5. w:Bacchus
  6. The god Zeus Ammon or Jupiter Ammon was depicted as a ram or a man with ram's horns. His sanctuary was at Siwah Oasis which is about four hundred Roman miles southwest of Alexandria.
  7. This was the ram with the w:Golden Fleece, which was sought be Jason and the Argonauts.
  8. i.e. Taurus
  9. This is the w:Rape of Europa, in which Jupiter usually takes the form of the bull (but here the bull seems to be an animal doing his bidding). When they reached Crete, they had a son, Minos, King of Crete.
  10. i.e. Gemini
  11. This is a mystery cult practiced at the sanctuary of the Great Gods on the island of Samothrace -- w:Samothrace temple complex -- and popular among ancient seafarers.
  12. These are the w:Dioscuri, sons of Jupiter by Leda and brothers of Helen of Troy.
  13. i.e. Cancer
  14. i.e. Leo
  15. i.e. Virgo
  16. i.e. Libra
  17. The Latin word for "scales", libra, sounds like liber, "free."
  18. Stathmos is Greek for "weight."
  19. i.e. Scorpio
  20. i.e. Sagittarius
  21. The god of medicine
  22. i.e. Capricorn
  23. i.e. Aquarius
  24. w:Ganymedes was a Trojan prince, carried off to Olympus by Jupiter to be the cup-bearer of the gods
  25. i.e. Pisces
  26. The w:Gigantomachy
  27. Text is probably lost here
  28. The w:Big Dipper: w:Ursa Major and w:Ursa Minor
  29. Easterly
  30. Northeasterly
  31. North-Northeasterly
  32. Northerly
  33. North-Northwesterly
  34. Northwesterly
  35. Westerly
  36. Southwesterly
  37. South-Southwesterly
  38. South-southeasterly
  39. Southeasterly
  40. The Salento peninsula.
  41. 41.0 41.1 The w:River Don
  42. The Bay of Cadiz
  43. i.e. of Gibraltar
  44. the Himalayas
  45. Mount Lebanon
  46. The w:Ceraunian Mountains
  47. The w:Atlas Mountains
  48. The w:Rock of Gibraltar
  49. w:Aras (river)
  50. w:Terme River and w:Rioni River
  51. The Hebrus is the w:Maritsa
  52. w:Spercheios
  53. w:Gediz River and its tributary the Sart, w:Büyük Menderes River, and the w:Küçükmenderes River
  54. w:Berdan River
  55. The w:Sava and the w:Danube
  56. w:Po (river) and w:Tiber
  57. The w:Timavo
  58. w:Rhône
  59. w:Ebro and w:Guadalquivir
  60. The w:Medjerda River
  61. See w:Lake Tritonis
  62. w:Rhine
  63. The Mediterranean
  64. w:Ibiza
  65. The old town of w:Cádiz, now a peninsula, but formerly an island.
  66. w:Sri Lanka
  67. w:Britain
  68. A heavily fictionalised arctic island, perhaps derived from Scandinavia; see w:Thule.
  69. Heavily fictionalised islands in the Atlantic, see w:Fortunate Isles.
  70. w:Antiparos
  71. w:Salamis Island
  72. w:Kos
  73. w:Îles d'Hyères
  74. w:Kerkennah Islands, w:Djerba
  75. w:Strait of Gibraltar
  76. w:Pillars of Hercules
  77. From the point of view of someone looking south
  78. w:Apollonia (Illyria)
  79. This seems a rather underwhelming wonder... A lacuna has been suggested after nemo.
  80. Presumably w:Amphilochian Argos
  81. 81.00 81.01 81.02 81.03 81.04 81.05 81.06 81.07 81.08 81.09 The Latin text appears defective.
  82. w:Lefkada
  83. i.e. Ulysses
  84. i.e. one of the men who sought to marry w:Penelope after the disappearance of Ulysses.
  85. asylos
  86. w:Lais of Corinth, a famous courtesan.
  87. One of the w:Seven Against Thebes, he was swallowed up by the Earth.
  88. The w:Parthenon
  89. 8.87 metres (assuming a cubit of 443 mm)
  90. This is the only reference in an ancient text to the w:Pergamon Altar and basically the only thing that the text as a whole is known for.
  91. The w:Syrian Coastal Mountain Range, but it is perhaps more likely that w:Bargylia is meant.
  92. w:Magnesia ad Sipylum
  93. Or possibly, "a tomb in Caria of a snoring man"
  94. 44.3 metres (assuming a Roman cubit of 443 mm)
  95. 66.57 metres tall and 26.63 metres wide (assuming a cubit of 443 mm)
  96. w:Hamadan
  97. w:Cyrus the Great, King of Persia (r. 559-530 BC)
  98. In myth, w:Memnon (mythology) is an ally of the Trojans and King of the Ethiopians (usually located in East Africa, but sometimes in India). Alternatively, Ampeleius might be referring to w:Artaxerxes II of Persia, known to the Greeks as "Mnemon."
  99. 13.29 metres thick and 57.59 metres tall (assuming a cubit of 443 mm), 42.54 km in length (assuming a mile of 1418 metres)
  100. Semiramis is a mythical queen of Babylon
  101. "a statue of"? The text is very defective.
  102. 132.9 metres (assuming a cubit of 443 mm)
  103. The mention of Athens is probably an error in the text, since it does not fit the geographic pattern followed by the text.
  104. The upper atmosphere
  105. The Sun
  106. 106.0 106.1 The personification of wealth and power.
  107. i.e. Optimus Maximus.
  108. i.e. Apollo
  109. This is Ptah
  110. This is the Greek god Hermes, son of Zeus and Maia
  111. This is Thoth; Cyllene is a mountain in Arcadia
  112. This seems to be Erechthonius, the primordial king of Athens
  113. Son of Cybele, see Cic. N. D. 3, 23, 57.
  114. This is the Apollo of Greek mythology.
  115. This is the Artemis of Greek mythology
  116. These two are versions of the Aphrodite of Greek myth
  117. This seems to be the Athena of Greek myth
  118. An alternative name of the Nile
  119. This is w:Melqart; "Cartere" might be a corruption of "Astarte"?
  120. The text might be defective.
  121. This is the Herakles of Greek mythology, and presumably intended as the one the Pillars of Hercules are named after.
  122. w:Bel
  123. w:Nineveh
  124. This is a garbled reference to the w:Battle of the 300 Champions against the Argives, in which 300 Spartans fought with 300 Argives. Only Othryades survived and he committed suicide in shame.
  125. i.e. Delphi
  126. In fact, they were aristocrats, they only killed Hipparchus and their honours were not divine.
  127. Greek for "the Just"
  128. Dion was not an Athenian.
  129. Philip II of Macedon
  130. Alexander the Great
  131. Also called Gaugamela
  132. i.e. to w:Siwah in the desert west of Egypt.
  133. This refers to w:Nearchus' sea journey from Egypt to Babylon, in which Alexander did not actually take part.
  134. Philip V of Macedon
  135. sic, for Flamininus
  136. Perseus of Macedon
  137. Lago di Albano, Lazio
  138. Rome's port at the mouth of the Tiber river
  139. "the Greatest"
  140. i.e. by avoiding battle
  141. i.e. "hesitator"
  142. "The runner"
  143. "Pious"
  144. Sic, for Sulla
  145. i.e. Julius Caesar
  146. w:Sallust, the Roman historian
  147. i.e. w:Trajan
  148. 100 BC, Gaius Servilius Glaucia was actually praetor, not consul.
  149. w:Tribal Assembly
  150. i.e. w:Augustus
  151. i.e. of Persia
  152. This account basically follows w:Herodotus book 3
  153. i.e. w:Mithridates I of Parthia, whom w:Sallust mentioned in his Histories, now lost.
  154. Greek for "Conqueror."
  155. The following section is very lacunose, but clearly contains more than just kings of Cappadocia and Armenia.
  156. This sentence appears to be out of place, since Tigranes, who was King of Armenia, had nothing to do with the Third Punic War.
  157. Actually, Tyrant of Samos.
  158. Rather than Thebes in Egypt
  159. Confusing, since Periandrus ruled Corinth in the 6th century BC, several centuries before the Greeks engaged with Rome in any significant way.
  160. This should be w:Dionysius II of Sicily.
  161. In the version of the anecdote that we have from Plutarch, the point of the comment is to turn the insult itelf to Timoleon's credit: the shouting of the insult proves that true freedom of speech has been achieved.
  162. i.e. he killed himself
  163. The Garamantae lived in the desert in what is now southern w:Libya; the Romans did not wage war with them until 19 BC, they never waged war with the Indians.
  164. This is w:Ptolemy XIII Theos Philopator, who reigned from 51-47 BC. Pothinus was a eunuch who acted as his regent. His successor was Cleopatra
  165. w:Battle of the Lipari Islands, 260 BC, at which the Carthaginians were not commanded by either Hanno or Mago.
  166. w:Hamilcar Barca. His third son is not otherwise named.
  167. w:Hasdrubal Barca, who was defeated at the w:Battle of the Metaurus in 207 BC
  168. w:Juba I, reigned 60 - 46 BC, Juba actually fought alongside Scipio and Cato against Julius Caesar for a number of years (49-46 BC). His death in a suicide pact after a feast only occured once the situation had become hopeless.
  169. w:Juba II, reigned 29 BC - AD 23. Caesarea is the modern w:Cherchell
  170. The Latin text is corrupt, but from other sources, this is what it ought to mean.
  171. w:Tiridates I of Armenia, who was defeated by w:Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo in AD 62 and restored to power by the Emperor Nero.
  172. Presumably something like, "in which wars the City of Rome was threatened."
  173. w:Cimbric War. The Cimbri crossed into Italy over the part of the Alps near w:Trento shortly before their final defeat by the Romans at w:Battle of Vercellae
  174. w:Third Servile War
  175. Presumably the fourth must be w:Scipio Africanus (the Publius Scipio mentioned above), who drove the Carthaginians out of Hispania and then crossed over to Africa where he defeated them decisively and brought the war to an end.
  176. This is not true.
  177. Caesar was actually repulsed in Britain; it was only conquered by the Emperor Claudius.
  178. Trajan conquered the Dacians and briefly drove the Parthians out of Mesopotamia. The mention of Trajan indicates that this work was written early in the second century AD; strikingly, the present passage is nearly the only reference in the work to the period after Caesar Augustus.
  179. It is striking that Ampeleius devotes time to these Assemblies which, on most analyses, had been essentially dead letters since the reign of Augustus.
  180. See w:Curiate Assembly, w:Tribal Assembly, and w:Centuriate Assembly for details on the compisition and competencies ofthese assemblies.
  181. Fascinatingly, no mention of the Emperors who had held true power in Rome for a hundred years by the time this work was written.