Page images
PDF
EPUB

singuilar when ho anid that ho loved men when they were betraying, but hatoil them after they had betrayal ; 18 also Cæsar said, in the case of Rhymitulkcs tho Thracinn, that he loved tho treachery but hated the traitor; but this scems a common reflection about bad men by those who have need of them, just as wo need tho poison of certain venomous beasts ; for they appreciate their value while they aro making use of them, anil loathe their wickedness when they have dono with them. And that was how Tarpeia was treated by Tatius. He ordered the Sabines to remeinber thcir agreement, and not to grudge her what was on their loft arms. Ilo himself first of all took off his gold armlet, and with it flung his great oblong shield. As all the rest did the like, sho perished, being pelted with the gold bracelets and crushed liy the number and weight of the shields. Tarpeius also was convicted of treachery by Romulus, according to Juba's version of the history of Sulpicius Gulba. The other legends about Tarpein are improbablo; nmongst them that which is told by Antigonus, that sho was tho daughter of Tatius tho Sabino leader, abducted by Romulus, and treated by her fathor 118 is related above. Simylus tho poct talks utter nonsenso when he says that it was not tho Sabincs but tho Gauls to whom Tarpeia betrayed the Capitol, becauso she was in love with their king. llis verscs run as follows:

" And ncar Tarpein, by the Capitol

That ilwelt, betrnyer of thic wnlls of Rome.
She loved the chieftin of the Gauls too well,

To gunrd from trcachcry lior futhier's home."
And a little afterwards lic speaks of hor death.

[ocr errors]

- ller did the Brians and the Celtic tribes

Bury, but not bouillo the stream of Po;
From oil their warliko arms their shields the fung.

And what the dainsel longcd for luid her low."

XVIII. IIowever, as Tarpcia was buried there, the hill was called the Tarpcian hill until King Tarquinius, when ho dedicated the place to Jupiter, removed her remains and abolished the name of Tarpcia. But even to this day they call the rock in the Capitol the Tarpcian Rock, down

[graphic]
[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

48

cian,

sho

ain Dey

and treachero11g. Salincs as

him, at

PLUTARCI's LIVES. held the citadel, Romulus in fury challenged them to which malcfactors used to be flung. When tho Sabincs come down and fight. Tatius accepted his challenge with confidence, as he saw that if overpowered his men would mediato space, in which they wero about to engage, was battlo necessary, as there were but narrow outlets for surrounded by hills, and so scemed to mako a desperato been in flood a few days before, and had left a deep muddy

flight or pursuit. It chanced, also, that the river had stands; so that men's footing was not certain, but difficult pool of water upon tho lovol ground where tho Forum now

Iero a picco of good fortuno befel tho of their chiefs, a man with a reputation for dashing

pressed . , ono courage, rode on horseback far before tho rest. Ilis horso called the Gulf of Curtius. saved himself. This place, in memory of him, is still

last finding it impossible, left him there and Sabines fought a stout and indecisive battle, in which

Warned of their danger, tho amongst them Hostilius. IIc is said to have husband of Hersilia and the grandfather of

who became king after the reign of Numa. prover the last, in which Romulus was struck on the head

Oats took place in that narrow space, as we may

copocial mention is inado of one Palatino hill, abandoning the level ground. Romulus, The Romang now gave way to the Sabines, and fled to tho now recovered from the blow, endeavoured to stay tho

and like to fall, and unable to fight longer. and with loud shouts called upon them to stand Sht. But as the stream of fugitives poured on,

had the courage to face round, he lifted his Qavon and prayed to Jupiter to stay the army

allow tho tottering stato of Rome to fall, but to fter his prayer many wero held back from flight nce for tho king, and tho fugitives suddenly Their confidenco. They made their first stand

is the temple of Jupiter Stator, which one may Ho who makes to stand firm;" and then forming

many fell been tho Ilostilius, Many com BUPIOse ;

by a stono

fugitives, firm and

b 2.

and no
hands to
and not
help it.
by'reve
resumoa
whero no
translate

[ocr errors]

their ranks once more they drove back the Sabines as far as what is now called the Palace, and the Temple of Vesta.

XIX. Whilo they wero preparing to fight as though the battle was only now just begun, they were restrained by a strange spectacle, beyond tho power of words to express. Tho daughters of the Sabines who had been carried off were scen rushing from all quarters, with loud shricks and wailings, through the ranks and among the dead bodics, as though possessed by some god. Some of them carried infant children in their arms, and others woro their hair loose and dishevelled. All of them kept addressing the Romans and tho Sabines alternately by the most endcaring names. The hearts of both armies wero melted, and they toll back so as to leave a spaco for the women between them. A murmur of sorrow ran through all tho ranks, and a strong feeling of pity was excited by tho sight of the women, and by their words, which began with arguments and upbraidings, but endod in en treatics and tcars. .“What wrong have we done to you,” said they, " that wo should have suffered and should even now buffer such cruel treatment at your hands? We wero violently and wrongfully torn away from our friends, and after we had been carried off we were neglected by our brothers, fathers, and relatives for so long a time, that now, bound by the closest of tics to our enemics, wo tremble for our ravishers and wrongers when they fight, and weep when they fall. Ye would not come and tcar us from our ravishers whilo wo wero yet maidens, but now yo would separato wives from their husbands, and mothers from thcir children, a worso piece of servico to us than your former neglect. Even if it was not about us that you began to fight, you ought to coaso now that you havo becomo fathers-in-law, and grandfathers, and relatives ono of another. But if the war is about us, then carry up off with your sons-in-law and our children, and give us our fathers and relatives, but do not take our husbands and children from 118. Wo besecch you not to allow us to be carried off captive a sccond time.” lIersilia spoko at length in this fuslion, and as the other women added their entrentics to hers, a truco was ngreed upon, and tho chiefs mot in confcronco. Iereupon tho womon mado their

[ocr errors]

hundred

H

husbands and chililron known to their fathers and brothers, futched food and drink for such as nccel it, and took the wounded into their own houses to bo nttended to thicrc. Thus they let their friends sco that they wero mistresses of their own houses, and that their husbands attended to their wishcs and trcated them with every respect.

In the conferenco it was accorilingly determined that ench woinen as chose to do so slıould continuo to live with work and dutics except thnt of spinning wool (rulaxia); that the Romans and the Sabines should dwell together in the city, and that the city should be called Rome, after Romulus, but the Romans be called Quirites after the native city of Tatius; and that thcy should both reign und command the ariny together. The place where this for the Romans call meeting coire. coinpact was inade is even to this day called the Comitium,

XX. Now that the city was donbleil in numbers, a Sabines, and the legions were composed of six thousand

more senators were clected from among tho infantry and six hundred cavalry. They also established Romulus, another Titienses from Tatins, and the third three tribes, of which they named one Ithamnenses, from Lucerenscs, after the name of a grove to which inany had fied for rcfuge, requiring asyluin, and had been admitted tribe and tribune show that there were three tribes. Each tribe was divided into ten centuries, which some say were named after the women who were carricd off; but this Beems to be untrue, as many of them aro named after

Ilowever, many privileges wero conferred upon way for them when they walked out, to say nothing

women, amongst which were that men should mako on pain of being tried before the criminal court; and also disgraceful in their presence, or appear naked before them, that their children should wear tho bulla, which is 80 called from its shape, which is like a bubble, and was worn round the neck, and also the broad purple border of their robe (prælexta). bat each first took counsel with his own hundred scnators,

The kings did not conduct their deliberations together,

places. the

and thon thoy all mot togothor. Totius dwolt whero now is tho tomplo of Juno Moneta, and Romulus by tho stop8 of tho Fair Shoro, as it is called, which aro at the descent from tho Palatino hill into the great Circus. lloro they say tho acred cornel-treo grow, the legend being that Romulus, to try his strength, throw a spear, with corncl. wood slnft, from Mount Aventino, and when the spcar-head Bulk into the ground, though many tricd, no ono was able to pull it out. The soil, which was fertilo, suited the wood, and it budied, and becaino tho stom of a goodsized cornel-treo. After tho dcath of Romulus this was pirescrved and reverenced as ono of the holiest olijects in tho city. A wall was built round it, and whenever any ono thought that it looked inclined to droop and wither he at once raised a shout to tell the loystanders, and they, just as if they wero assisting to put out a fire, called for water, and came from all quarters carrying pots of water to the place. It is said that when Caius Cæsar repaired the stops, and the workmen wero digging near it, they unintentionally damaged the roots, and the tree died.

XXI. Tho Sabines adopted the Roman system of months, and all that is remarkable about them will be found in tho · Life of Numa.' But Roniulus adopted the large oblong Sabino shield, and gave up the round Argolic shields which ho and the Romans had formerly carried. The two nations shared cach other's festivals, not abolishing any which cither had been wont to celebrate, but introducing several new ones, among which are tho Matronalia, instituted in honour of the women at the end of the war, and that of the Carmentalia. It is thought by somo that Carmenta is the ruling destiny which presides over a man's birth, wherefore she is worshippod by mothers. Others say that sho was tho wife of Evander tho Arcadian, a prophetess who used to chant oraclcs in versc, and henco surnamed Carmenta (for the Romans call verscs carmina); whereas it is generally admitted that her right name was Nicostratu. Somo explain the namo of Carmenda more plausibly as meaning that during her prophetic frenzy she was bereft of intellect; for the Romans call to lack, carere; and mind, mentem. We have spoken before of the feast of the Palilia. That

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »