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them to be inconsiderate, while consultation, though it may sometimes fail of success, hath this good in it, that it makes men more careful hereafter; but for the advantages that arise from chance, they are not owing to him that gains them, and as to what melancholy accidents happen unexpectedly, there is this comfort in them, that they had however taken the best consultations they could, to prevent them. ,
7. Now they so manage their preparatory exercises of their weapons, that not the bodies of the soldiers only, but their souls, may also become stronger : they are, moreover, hardened for war by fear; for their laws inflict capital punishments, not only for soldiers running away from their ranks, but for slothfulness and inactivity, though it be but in a lesser degree: as are their generals more severe than their laws; for they prevent any imputation of cruelty toward those under condemnation, by the great rewards they bestow on the valiant soldiers; and the readiness of obeying their commanders is so great, that it is very ornamental in peace; but when they come to a battle, the whole army is but one body, so well coupled together are their ranks, so sudden are their turnings about, so sharp their hearing as to what orders are given them, so quick their sight of the ensigns, and so nimble are their hands when they set to work; whereby it comes to pass, that what they do is done quickly, and what they suffer, they bear with the greatest patience. Nor can we find any examples where they have been conquered in battle, when they came to a close fight, either by the multitude of the enemies, or by their stratagems, or by the difficulties in the places they were in; no, nor by fortune neither; for their victories have been surer to them than fortune could have granted them. In a case, therefore, whose counsel still goes before action, and where, after taking the best advice, that advice is followed by so active an army, what wonder is it that Euphrates on the east, the ocean on the west, the most fertile regions of Lybia on the south, and the Danube and the Rhine on the north, are the limits of this empire! One might well say, that the Roman possessions are not inferior to the Romans themselves.
8. This account I have given the reader, not so much with the intention of commending the Romans, as of comforting those that have been onquered by them, and for the deterring others from attempting innovations under their government. This discourse of the Roman military conduct may also, perhaps, be of use to such of the curious as are ignorant of it, and yet have a mind to know it. · I return now from this digression.
i , sian marches into Galilee. § 1. And now Vespasian, with his son Titus, had tarried some time at Ptolemais, and had put his army in order. But when Placidus, who had overrun Galilee, and had besides slain a number of those whom he had caught (which were only the weaker part of the Galileans, and such as were of timorous souls), saw that the warriors ran always to those cities whose walls had been built by Josephus, he marched furiously against Jotapata, which was of them all the strongest, as supposing he should easily take it by a sudden surprise, and that he should thereby obtain great honour to himself among the commanders, and bring a great advantage to them in their future campaign; because, if this strongest place of them all were once taken, the rest would be so affrighted as to surrender themselves. But he was mightily mistaken in his undertaking; for the men of Jotapata were apprised of his coming to attack them, and came out of the city, and expected him there. So they fought the Romans briskly when they least expected it, being both many in number, and prepared for fighting, and of great alacrity, as esteeming their country, their wives, and their children to be in danger; and easily put the Romans to flight, and wounded many of them, and slew seven of them*; because their retreat was not made in a disorderly manner, because the strokes only touched the surface of their bodies, which were covered with their armour in all parts; and because the Jews did rather throw their weapons upon them from a great distance than venture to come hand to hand with them, and had only light armour on, while the other were completely armed. However, three men of the Jews' side were slain, and a few wounded; so Placidus finding himself unable to assault the city, ran away. . · 2. But as Vespasian had a great mind to fall upon Galilee, he marched out to Ptolemais, having put his army into that
,* I cannot but here observe an eastern way of speaking, frequent among them, but not usual among us, where the word only or alone, is not set down, bat perhaps some way supplied in the pronunciation. Thus, Josephus here says, that those of Jotapata slew seven of the Romans, as they were march: ing off, because the Romans' retreat was regular, their bodies were covered over with their armour, and the Jews fought at some distance. His meaning is clear, that these were the reasons why they slew only, or no more than seven. I have met with many the like examples in the Scriptures, in Josephus, &c. but did not note down the particular places. This observation ought to be borne in mind upon many occasions.
order wherein the Romans used to march. He ordered those auxiliaries which were lightly armed, and the archers, to march first, that they might prevent any sudden insults from the enemy, and might search out the woods that looked suspiciously, and were capable of ambuscades. Next to these followed that part of the Romans which was completely armed, both footmen and horsemen. Next to these followed ten out of every hundred, carrying along with them their arms, and what was necessary to measure out a camp withal; and after them, such as were to make the road even' and straight, and if it were any way rough and hard to be passed over, to plain it, and to cut down the woods that hindered their march, that the army might not be in distress, or tired with their march. Behind these he set such carriages of the army as belonged both to himself and to the other commanders, with a considerable number of their horsemen for their security. After these he marched himself, having with him a select body of footmen, and horsemen, and pikemen. After these came the peculiar cavalry of his own legion, for there were a hundred and twenty horsemen that peculiarly belonged to every legion. Next to these came the mules that carried the engines for sieges, and the other warlike machines of that nature. After these came the commanders of the cohorts, and tribunes, having about them soldiers chosen out of the rest. Then came the ensigns encompassing the eagle, which is at the head of every Roman legion, the king and the strongest of all birds, which seems to them a signal of dominion, and an omen that they shall conquer all against whom they march; these sacred ensigns are followed by the trumpeters. Then came the main arny in their squadrons and battalions, with six men in depth, which were followed at last by a centurion, who, according to custom, observed the rest. As for the servants of every legion, they all followed the footnien, and led the baggage of the soldiers, which was borne by the mules and other beasts of burden. But behind all the legions came the whole multitude of the mercenaries; and those that brought up the rear came last of all, for the security of the whole army, being both footmen, and those in their armour also, with a great number of horsemen.
3. And thụs did Vespasian march with his army, and came to the bounds of Galilee, where he pitched his camp, and restrained his soldiers, who were eager for war; he also showed his army to the enemy, in order to affright them, and to afford them a season for repentance, to see whether they would change their minds before it came to a battle; and at the same time he got things ready for besieging their strong
holds. And indeed this sight of the general brought many to repent of their revolt, and put them all into a consternation; for those that were in Josephus' camp, which was at the city called Garis, not far from Sepphoris, when they beard that the war was come near them, and that the Romans would suddenly fight them hand to hand, dispersed themselves, and fled not only before they came to a battle, but before the enemy ever came in sight, while Josephus and a few others were left behind; and as he saw that he had not an army sufficient to engage the enemy, that the spirits of the Jews were sunk, and that the greater part would willingly come to terms, if they might be credited, he already despaired of the success of the whole war, and determined to get as far as he possibly could out of danger; so he took those that staid along with him, and Aled to Tiberias.
· CHAP. VII. Vespasian, when he had taken the City Gadara, marches to
Jotapata. After a long Siege, the City is betrayed by a
Deserter, and taken by Vespasian. $ 1. So Vespasian marched to the city Gadara, and took it upon the first onset, because he found it destitute of any considerable pumber of men grown up, and fit for war. He then came into it and slew all the youth, the Romans having no mercy on any age whatsoever; and this was done out of the hatred they bore the nation, and because of the iniquity they had been guilty of in the affair of Cestius. He also set fire not only to the city itself, but to all the villas and small cities that were round about it; some of which were quite destitute of inhabitants; and out of some of them he carried the inhabitants as slaves into captivity.
2. As to Josephus, his retiring into that city which he chose as the most tit for his security, put it into great fear; for the people of Tiberias did not imagine that he would have run away, unless he had entirely despaired of the success of the war. And indeed as to that point, they were not mistaken about his opinion; for he saw whither the affairs of the Jews would tend at last, and was sensible that they bad but one way of escaping, and that was by repentance. However, although he expected that the Romans would forgive him, yet did he choose to die many times over rather than to betray, his country, and to dishonour that supreme command of the army which had been entrusted with him, or to live happily under those against whom he was sent to , fight. He determined, therefore, to give an exaet account of
affairs to the principal men at Jerusalem, by a letter, that he might not, by too much aggrandizing the power of the enemy, make them too timorous, nor by relating that their power beneath the truth, might encourage them to stand out, when they were perhaps disposed to repentance. , He also sent them word, that if they thought of coming to terms, they must suddenly write him an answer; or if they resolved upon war, they must send him an army sufficient to fight the Romans. Accordingly he wrote these things, and sent mes sengers immediately to carry his letter to Jerusalem.
3. Now Vespasian was very desirous of demolishing Jota-.. pata ; for he had gotten intelligence that the greatest part of the enemy had retired thither, and that it was on other accounts a place of great security to them. Accordingly he sent both footmen and horsemen to level the road, which was mountainous and rocky, not without difficulty to be tra- in veled over by footmen, but absolutely impracticable for horsemen. Now these workmen accomplished what they were about in four days' time, and opened a broad way for the army. On the fifth day, which was the twenty-first of the month Artemisius [Jyar] Josephus prevented him, and came from Tiberias, and went into Jotapata, and raised the drooping spirits of the Jews. And a certain deserter told this good news to Vespasian, that Josephus had removed himself thither, which made him make haste to the city, as supposing that with taking that he should take all Judea, in case he could but withal get Josephus under his power. So he took this news to be of the vastest advantage to him, and believed to be brought about by the providence of God, that he, who appeared to be the most prudent man of all their enemies, had of his own accord shut himself up in a place of sure custody. Accordingly he sent Placidus with a thousand horsemen, and Ebutius, a decurion, a person that was of eminency both in counsel and in action, to encompass the city round, that Josephus might not escape away privately. ; .,
4. Vespasian also, the very next day, took his whole army and followed them, and by marching till late in the evening, arrived then at Jotapata ; and bringing his army to the north, ern side of the city, he pitched his camp on a certain small .. hill which was seven furlongs from the city, and still greatly endeavoured to be well seen by the enemy, to put them into a consternation; which was indeed so terrible to the Jews immediately that no one of them durst go out beyond the wall. Yet did the Romans put off the attack at that time because they had marched all the day, although they placed a double row of battalions round the city, with a third row beyond them round the whole, which consisted of cavalry, in