Page images

of a judge? Let those who suffered by his injustice answer. But his prætorship in Sicily crowns all his works of wickedness, and finishes a lasting monument to his infamy.

6. The mischiefs done by him in that unhappy country, during the three years of his iniquitous administration, are such, that many years, under the wisest and best of prætors, will not be sufficient to restore things to the condition in which he found them: for it is notorious, that, during the time of his tyranny, the Sicilians" neither enjoyed the protection of their own original laws; of the regulations made for their benefit by the Roman senate, upon their coming under the protection of the commonwealth; nor of the natural and unalienable rights of men.

7. His nod has decided all causes in Sicily for these three And his decisions have broken all law, all preceyears. dent, all right. The sums he has, by arbitrary taxes and unheard-of impositions, extorted from the industrious poor, are not to be computed.a The most faithful allies" of the commonwealth have been treated as enemies.

8. Roman citizens have, like slaves, been put to death with tortures. The most atrocious criminals, for money, have been exempted from the deserved punishments; and men of the most unexceptionable characters, condemned and banished unheard. The harbours, though sufficiently fortified, and the gates of strong towns, have been open to pirates and ravagers."

9. The soldiery and sailors, belonging to a province un der the protection of the commonwealth, have been starved to death; whole fleets, to the great detriment' of the province, suffered to perish. The ancient monuments of either Sicilian or Roman greatness, the statues of heroes and princes have been carried off; and the temples stripped of the images.


10. Having, by his iniquitous sentences, filled the prisons with the most industrious and deserving of the people, he then proceeded to order numbers of Roman citizens to be strangled in the gaols: so that the exclamation, “I am a citizen of Rome! which has often, in the most distant regions, and among the most barbarous people, been a protection, was of no service to them; but, on the contrary, brought a speedier and a more severe punishment upon them.

11. I ask now, Verres, what thou hast to advance against this charge? Wilt thou pretend to deny it? Wilt thou pre

tend, that any thing false, that even any thing aggravated, is alleged against thee? Had any prince, or any state, committed the same outrage against the privilege of Roman citizens, should we not think we had sufficient ground for demanding satisfaction?

12. What punishment ought, then, to be inflicted upon a tyrannical and wicked prætor, who dared, at no greater distance than Sicily, within sight of the Italian coast, to put to the infamous death of crucifixion," that unfortunate and innocent citizen, Publius Gavius Cosanus," only for his having asserted his privilege of citizenship, and declared his intention of appealing to the justice of his country, against the cruel oppressor, who had unjustly confined him in prison at Syracuse, whence he had just made his escape?

13. The unhappy man, arrested as he was going to embark for his native country, is brought before the wicked prætor. With eyes darting fury, and a countenance distorted with cruelty, he orders the helpless victim of his rage to be stripped, and rods to be brought: accusing him, but without the least shadow of evidence, or even of suspicion, of having come to Sicily as a spy.

14. It was in vain that the unhappy man cried out, "I am a Roman citizen: I have served under Lucius Pretius,P who is now at Panormus,a and will attest' my innocence." The blood-thirsty prætor, deaf to all he could urge in his own defence, ordered the infamous punishment to be inflicted.

15. Thus, fathers, was an innocent Roman citizen publickly mangled with scourging; whilst the only words he uttered, amidst his cruel sufferings, were, "I am a Roman citizen!" With these he hoped to defend himself from violence and infamy. But of so little service was this privilege to him, that, whilst he was thus asserting his citizenship, the order was given for his execution,-for his execution upon the cross!

16. O liberty!-O sound once delightful to every Roman ear!-O sacred privilege of Roman citizenship!-once sacred!-now trampled upon!—But what then? Is it come to this? Shall an inferiours magistrate,' a governour, who holds his whole power of the Roman people, in a Roman province, within sight of Italy, bind, scourge, torture with fire and red hot plates of iron, and at last put to the infamous death of the cross, a Roman citizen?

17. Shall neither the cries of innocence expiring in agony, nor the tears of pitying spectators, nor the majesty of the Roman commonwealth, nor the fear of the justice of his country, restrain the licentious and wanton cruelty of a monster, who, in confidence of his riches, strikes at the root of liberty, and sets mankind at defiance?

18. I conclude with expressing my hopes, that your wisdom and justice, fathers, will not, by suffering the atrocious and unexampled insolence of Caius Verres to escape due punishment, leave room to apprehend the danger of a total subversion" of authority, and the introduction of general anarchy and confusion.






a Ad-her-bal,åd-hèr'-bål, son of Mi-r De-feat, de-fête', destruction, to cipsa, and grandson of Masinissa, overthrow, to destroy. put to death by Jugurtha. Ju-gur-tha, ju-gur -thâ, the illegitimate son of Manastabal, brother of Micipsa.

e Mi-cip-sa, me-sip'-sa, a king of Numidia, son of Masinissa.


d Con-junct-ly, kôn-jůnkt’-lé, joint-v ly.

e Hi-emp-sal, he-êm'-sål, a king of Numidia.

late, to compliment upon any happy event.

Drench, drênsh, to soak, steep, physick.

u Pal-ace, pål-lås, a royal edifice. Im-brue, im-broo, to steep, soak. w Reek, rèèk, to smoke, steam, exhale, to emit vapour.

[ocr errors]

f Nu-mid-i-a, nù-mid'-e-â, an inland country of Africa, now they kingdom of Algiers.

g Pro-pri-e-tor, prò-pri'-è-tůr, possessor in his own right.

h Mas-i-nis-sa, mâs-é-nîs'-så, a king of a small part of Africa.

i So-lie-it, so-lis-sit, to entreat, excite.

k An-ces-tor, ân'-sês-tår, a forefa


7 Bur-den-some,bår'-d'n-sûm, griev ous, troublesome.

m Ne-ces-si-ty, né-sês'-se-tè, compulsion, want, poverty.

n Re-sent-ment, rè-zênt'-mênt, a deep sense of injury.

o Ex-pel, eks-pêl', to drive out, banish.

p Sy-phax, si'-faks, a king of the Masæsylii in Lybya.

9 Car-tha-gin-i-an, kår-tha-jin-neân, a native of Carthage.


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


Mu-tu-al, mu-tshù-âl, reciprocal, equal.

Dun-geon, dun'-jån, a dark loathsome prison.

In-tol-cr-a-ble, în-tôl'-lêr-å-bl, in-
sufferable, not to be endured, bad
beyond sufferance.

In-tru-der, in-trỏỏ'-dår, one who
forces himself into company.
In-sin-u-a-tion, in-sîn-nu-à'-shủn,
the power of pleasing.

Em-is-sar-y, em'-is-sår-rè, a spy,
a secret agent.

d Ven-geance, vên-janse, punish
ment, penal retribution.
Dis-sem-ble, dis-sêm'-bl, to de-
ceive by false appearances.
ƒ Im-pi-ous, Im'-pé-ůs, wicked, pro-

[blocks in formation]

Speech of ADHERBAL to the Roman Senate, imploring their protection against JUGURTHA.b


[ocr errors]

1. Ir is known to you, that king Micipsa, my father, on his death-bed, left in charge to Jugurtha, his adopted son, conjunctlyd with my unfortunate brother Hiempsal and myself, the children of his own body, the administration of the kingdom of Numidia, directing us to consider the senate and people of Rome as proprietors of it. He charged us to use our best endeavours to be serviceable to the Roman commonwealth; assuring us, that your protection would prove a defence against all enemies; and would be instead of armies, fortifications, and treasures.

2. While my brother and I were thinking of nothing but how to regulate ourselves according to the directions of our deceased father--Jugurtha-the most infamous of mankind!-breaking through all ties of gratitude and of common humanity, and trampling on the authority of the Ro man commonwealth, procured the murder of my unfortunate brother; and has driven me from my throne and native country, though he knows I inherit, from my grandfather, Masinissa, and my father Micipsa, the friendship and alliance of the Romans.

3. For a prince to be reduced, by villany, to my distressful circumstances, is calamity enough; but my misfortunes are heightened by the consideration that I find myself obliged to solicit your assistance, fathers, for the services done you by my ancestors, not for any I have been able to render you in my own person. Jugurtha has put it out of my power to deserve any thing at your hands; and has forced me to be burdensome,' before I could be useful to you.

4. And yet, if I had no plea, but my undeserved misery -a once powerful prince, the descendant of a race of illustrious monarchs, now, without any fault of my own, destitute of every support, and reduced to the necessity" of begging foreign assistance, against an enemy who has seized my throne and my kingdom-if my unequalled distresses were all I had to plead-it would become the greatness of the Roman commonwealth, to protect the injured, and to check the triumph of daring wickedness over helpless in


5. But, to provoke your resentment" to the utmost, Jugurtha has driven me from the very dominions, which the senate and people of Rome gave to my ancestors; and,

from which, my grandfather, and my father, under your umbrage, expelled Syphaxe and the Carthaginians. Thus, fathers, your kindness to our family is defeated'; and Jugurtha, in injuring me, throws contempt upon you.

6. O wretched prince! Oh cruel reverse of fortune! Oh father Micipsa! is this the consequence of thy generosity; that he, whom thy goodness raised to an equality with thy own children, should be the murderer of thy children? Must, then, the royal house of Numidia always be a scene of havock and blood? While Carthage remained, we suffered, as was to be expected, all sorts of hardships from their hostile attacks; our enemy near; our only powerful ally, the Roman commonwealth, at a distance..

7. When that scourge of Africa was no more, we congratulated ourselves on the prospect of established peace. But, instead of peace, behold the kingdom of Numidia drenched with royal blood! and the only surviving son of its late king, flying from an adopted murderer, and seeking that safety in foreign parts, which he cannot command in his own kingdom.

8. Whither-Oh! whither shall I fly? If I return to the royal palace" of my ancestors, my father's throne is seized by the murderer of my brother. What can I there expect, but that Jugurtha should hasten to imbrue, in my blood, those hands which are now reeking with my brother's? If i were to fly for refuge, or for assistance to any other court, from what prince can I hope for protection, if the Roman commonwealth give me up? From my own family and friends I have no expectations.

9. My royal father is no more. He is beyond the reach of violence, and out of hearing of the complaints of his un-~ happy son. Were my brother alive, our mutual sympathy would be some alleviation. But he is hurried out of life, in his early youth, by the very hand which should have been the last to injure any of the royal family of Numidia.

10. The bloody Jugurtha has butchered all whom he sus‐ 'pected to be in my interest. Some have been destroyed by the lingering torment of the cross. Others have been given a prey to wild beasts; and their anguish made the sport of men, more cruel than wild beasts. If there be any yet alive, they are shut up in dungeons, there to drag out a life more intolerable than death itself.

11. Look down, illustrious senators of Rome! from that height of power to which you are raised, on the unexam

« PreviousContinue »