(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire"

This is a digital copy of a book that was preserved for generations on library shelves before it was carefully scanned by Google as part of a project 
to make the world's books discoverable online. 

It has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one that was never subject 
to copyright or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 
are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often difficult to discover. 

Marks, notations and other marginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 
publisher to a library and finally to you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud to partner with libraries to digitize public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order to keep providing this resource, we have taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial parties, including placing technical restrictions on automated querying. 

We also ask that you: 

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request that you use these files for 
personal, non-commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort to Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attribution The Google "watermark" you see on each file is essential for informing people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 
countries. Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through the full text of this book on the web 



at |http : //books . google . com/ 



HN31XZ a 



y 



i nf 



■■^^ 



\ 




>- 



V 



1th 



"%- 




•k .^ 




:r^ 



'*^ 



r< 



i > 



L 




/■.. 



y 






-J 







J^arbarti College liftrarg 

FBOM 

the Xii'brai'y of tlie late 

ANDREW PEESTON PEABODY, 

H.C. 1836, 

and professor in the University. 



Received Oct. 16, 1893. 



c 



THE 



BISTORT 



DECLINE AND FALL 



ROMAN EMPIRE. 



BT EDWARD GIBBON, ESQ. 

bJitI) Nates, 

BY THE REV. H. H. MILMAN, 

VSSBBIfDAftY or IT. PBTBR*t AHD TIOAR OF M. MABOARBT*!, WBSTMIiriTBB. 

IN FOUR TOLUMBB. 
VOL. III. 



i^NEW-TORK: 
HABPER & BROTHERS, 83 CLIFF-STRBBT. 

1844. 



JC, 5^/9/ -♦e/.uNi Co!lo^« Library. 

. . r- r^m t.nr. Library of 



coNTsurrs of thv! third tolumb. 



CHAPTER XXXUL 

■Em9 mU JHmgUtima^ Mmpmrmn tf tkt 
Btrtkt Edrntrnti^n^nd Jtrk KsifUUB •/ Thmdf 
ricik» Ottr9gmlh—Ui» hatmiitm md Cnmmmt 

V<A« y— t— JUatfry —4 «gfl O— w n mn t 
TU SmuUr B0€tk6m$^La$t AcU ami DmU tf 

A. p. tAM 

45S-^f75 Birth and EdneailMi of Thtodoito.. 1 

474-4nTIieReigBol'ZMio S 

4B1— SISTbeBeigiiorAMMailfM 3 

47S-«aB Serrke and B«voltof Tbeodorie... 

«B H«aBdeitakMlboOiNiqiM« of Italy 4 

Biillardi 5 

480,400 The llirMDeAala of Odoaflfli ih. 

4n Hia Caiiltalatlon and Death 6 

403-00 ReifD of TheodoriCtKloforitaly... lb. 

Partition of Laoda 7 

SeparaUoQol'theGothiaBdlialiaiiB ib. 

Foralfn Potley oTTbeodorie 8 

Hit detaMlTe Ware 

500 Hla naval Armamenta lb. 

CItU Goverament of Italy aeeordlQg to the 

RomanLawa 10 

ProaperkyofRome 11 

no yMt ofTbeodorie ib. 

Flouriafainff Bute of Italy IS 

Tbeodorie an Arian lb. 

HtaToteralioQoftheCalholioa M 

YlceeofhiaGovemmeat ib. 

Be is proToked to peraeeote the Cathollca. 15 
Charaeier, Studiaa, and Hooowa of Boe- 

thloa... 16 

HiaPatrtoHnB 17 

He is aecoaad of Traason ib. 

9M Rto InprlHmmeBt and Death 18 

flOS Death of Bymanehaa 10 

an BeaMcae and Death of Theodoilc lb. 

CHAPTER XL. 

EEr9c«m«/ JwCin a« EUm^IUitn ^fJiutimum 
"A. T%» EmwrmM 7%md»rm II. Fketism tftks 
Orrww, mud 89iiti»m 9f ConatmdmtpU-'llL 
Trmd* cud Mmmfthurt •/ Silk— TV, Fitumem 
•and Tnet—Y, Edi/U»9 cf Jiut m^ a n Ckmrek 
^ St, 89 pki m F i nt i A i M t iMt and Frtmtur* •/ 
th» Kmttaru Eapirw— VL AhUUwntif th$ SckM 
•/jitk9m»,mndtk»C$m$MUkif^fJUm§. 

A*9w PAOS 

«9 or 483 Birth of the Emperor Jwtinlan.... 80 
fa8-A7 Blerailoa and Reign of his Uncle 

Joatinl ib. 

aM-^S7 Adoption and SoeeeirioB of JMHaiaa U 

asr-S05 The Relca of Juatinlan 98 

Character and Hiiiofflea of Proeopla8....# lb. 

DivWonofthe Reign of JaBttaiiaa....vr.. 83 

Birth and Vicea of the EBBpraa Theodora ib. 

Her Marriafe with JoMtaiian 85 

HerTyraaay 88 

HerYkMea. lb. 

MB And Death 87 

TheF!aetlonaoftheCiicaa Ibi 

AtRoaae 98 

Thar diatmet Coaitaathiople and the Baal lb. 

Janlan favoora the BhMi 80 

WO 8editloaofOonatantlnople,amiiawiiJVtta SO 

The Dliii«Bi of JualinlaB 31 

FIrmnen of Theodora •••• lb. 

The Bedttioo la auppeewit 38 

A9 



Agrtenltnie and Maniiiheinna of the Eaai- 



TheUaeofBUkbytheB 

bnpoilatiQa fram China by Land and Ben. 

Introduction of SUk Works into Greece. . . 

State of the Revenue 

Avarice and ProAnkm of Jnetlaian* 

Psraldoaa Savinfi 




The MinlsleiB of Justinian 

JohnofCappadoda 

His Edifleea and Arehltecta 

Fbnndatlon of the Chaieh of St. 



Marblea 



Churches and Palacee 

Fortificatians of Europe 

'of Asia alter the Oonqneat of 



33 
34 
35 

38 
37 
ib. 
ib. 
38 
ib. 
30 
lb. 
lb. 
40 
41 
48 
43 
ib. 
44 
ik 
45 



rity 
luna. 



Fnnlflratlnna of the Empire, ftom the 

Eliumc;^ 10 the Persian Frontier 

48f^ Dtnth of Perosea, King of Persia 

fllh5-5(t5 The l*eralan War 

ri'.rti riftL Liana of Dara 

TNu <'njN;»9sio or Iberian Gates 

Ttie iScU'Kis of Athens 

They mv Buppressed by Justinian 

PrwUifl 

—570 ni9 ^^uccessors 

TtuI.ruT'jf thePhilosopbets 

541 Tlu3 Rouion Consulship extinguished by 



50 
ib. 
51 
98 
58 
54 
lb. 
55 



CHAPTER ZLI. 

Cknqtu»iatfJu9timtmmintk» Wut-CUtrmeUr mU 
3ni Ctmmaignt of Bdi»*rhu—H» tavedct end 
mMmm fJU rmmkal KingUm •/ A/Hem— His 
T^r i u mph '- TJto Ootkie Ifar— JET* rtuvmrt Sieilp, 
Jfa^t cad JUwu-^8{«g9 of Ronu kf fJU Oolkt 
— TlUir Retroot cad Loooo t S umn dor of Jte- 

mmdMiifort 



A.9w PAOa 

533 Justinian resolves to tovadeAfHca 58 

583-530 State of the Vandali. Hiklerle ib. 

53fr-534 Geiimer 57 

Debatea on the AfHcan War ik 

Character and Choice of Belfsarlua 58 

580^^538 Hta Servkco In the Penian War.... lb. 

533 Praparadonlbr the African War 00 

Departure of the Fleet 80 

Bdtoarlni Lands on the Coast of Afrka.. 88 

Detela the Vandali In a first Battle 88 

Bednctkm of Carthage • 84 

Final Deftat of Gellner and the VaiidaiB. 8BI 

534 Conquest of AfHea by Belisarlns... ...... 87 

Distress and Captivity of Gelhner 80 

RetamandTilamphofBeliaarlas 80 

536 His sole Consnlslilp ....•_...... 70 



Consulship 
„ 3eilmerand 

Manaeis and Delbat of the Moore 

Nautralily of the YMgoihs 

-880 Conquests of the BoaBaas la 
a04Bellsariua threaieoa 
Italy ... 



OMiccBCha of 



71 

71 
73 



CONTENTS, 



A.l>. PAOS 

asi-<S34 Gowmnent and Death of AnulMoii- 

tlu,au«en of Italy 74 

SSSHOTBslteandDMlh 75 

BellBariiM iavadet aad subdaea Bidty .... 7a 
SU-SM Reign and WeakneMof Tbeodatus, 

the Gothic King of Italy 77 

837 BellBariua hivadea Ital/ and redueca Naplee 78 

336-^540 Vitigea^Khia of Italy ,\7, 79 

OK Belinriua enters Rome 80 

S37 Siege of Rome Iqr the Oacha ih. 

Vaioar of Beiinriua 81 

Hialieieiicaof Roma ib. 

RepuleeB a general AaHMiH of the Oacha.. 83 

HiaSaliiet 84 

DiatieaioftbeCity, ib. 

BzileofPopaSylvaiiiia. 83 

DeMveranoe of the Cily 86 

BeHeariaareeovennuukyCitiei^iritelr— 87 

aBTheGotharaiaethe8i8i»ofRoiae ib. 



A.D. 

1 540-^561 N< 



BeiiretoRaveana ib. 

JeaJooey of the Romaa Ceaerale Ib. 

Death of CoaMaatina ib. 

The EowMh Nanea lb. 

FinnaeefaadAathoffltyofBeUnrhH..... 89 
l,5a»lBvaelonofIta^bythaFnuik8 ib. 

DeelnielioBofMilaa go 

Belleaiiuaberieges Ravenna ib. 

» BobdaeathoGoihieKiBgdoni of Italy 08 

OapHvityof Vtaigea ib. 

I BetramaodOloffyofBellMtriaa ib. 



Secret Hletory of hia Wife Aatoalna 03 

HerliOireffTheodoeini, 04 




GBAFTBR XLIL 

m^U 0ftk$ BarkarU WMd^KstailiMkmaU ^ 
Ike LambMrdt tn the Dmub^^TrOet tmd /» 
roadt •/ the Sdmeuiane—Orighuliitfire. and 
Mmhunu tf Om T\ark9-~T»t FUrJU 0f Oe 
A9v^Ck0nv» L er A*««JUr«aa Kmm </ Per- 
•j^m* proneiwt ReifH and Wttn viik the 
Bawuuu—TJU OBteUtm or Lnic Wt^Tha 



flr--585 WealoMM of the Empire oT Joetl. 

niao OB 

Slate of the Barhariaoa , 08 

The Gepid0 lb. 

TbeLombarde Ib. 

The Sclavonlaoi go 

Their Inroads 100 

MS Origin and Monarchy of the Turks in Aria 101 
The Avnrs flv before the Turkji, ud ap- 
prciftch tlieEDi|)lr« .-....** , 108 

52B Thtftr Emiuucy io Consimmln^c 104 

aeo— ^J EuitMiMiv* of tiip TiirJtj and Ronans ih. 

aoo--5;« smcorr^nisi,...,.., loo 

Wl— 57V Keipi of Ntuhirvao u C7hoeR« .... 107 

Hin Lov« of Learziinf Mg 

5B^^3& l*rt»«j and War with the Eohmm... 110 

940 HeUivaidetJ^yHa,. HI 

Andruliii AntiofOi ..»...,....,.., Jb. 

S^ Defefice of tht £«■! bj Benufiua^ . > US 

Deeerlpiton uf Colcboe^ IjMxIxa. or Mla- 

„f«U*^ --- - 114 

lfanim«rth9NaUv«.*.... ..•••• 119 

BeimlBt*OM0fCok;rKiB..,. no 

pad«filtePer»lant,be|ar«ChriBSHKl ib. 

Lnderthffllofr>a«,,b,fo«Chrift,60, ih. 

sm ViBitftf Artaii* ,., , 117 

£B raitv4^nii?TiQf tbvLftd „.,. |b, 

510—540 TivveAi aixt Repontaiac* of the OM- 

chJ^A* * , . , , , ^ IV 

*»-a51 ai(?¥aofFetra us 

«ft-^»TheColehiaDOFLazicWat... 110 



atiouf and Treatiee' between 

aadCliosroeo.......... 

aO Conqoaris of the Alwsrii 
53» Their AWanee wkh iaai 



190 

ISlr 

ISS^ 



CHAPTER XUIL 
lUktiOitinM of MrU^—Rutoroidoii of tko Ootktc 
KiiigdomlfTUUar^LooomdRoco^mvofRowto 
^Ffuml Cokqueot ofhotw by JfOrooo^RxUnetion. 
of tko Ootrorotko-'£kfo4U of tko FirmJu aM 
M m toMm -Loo t FJetorWyDugrmeotomd Domtk 
^ BoKoanmo^Domtk and Clormttor^Jnttinim 
mmdFUguo. 



53S-^545 TbeTrooUesof Afttca 1S3 

M3-5SB RebeUion of the Moors 195- 

540 Revolt of the Goths Uft 

Ml--644yielorieeofTolila,Kta9ofItalr.... IMT 
OontraelofOpeekVleaaadfio^ianaa. ih. 
"" 148 Second OeauiMd or BeHsarlna la 

it^ iir 

SIOBomebesiendbytheCkMte ^ l» 

Attempt of BeUsaviua 130 

Bone taken by the Gaiha. «.. ib^ 

547 Reoovered by BeliBBriiia 138 

548 Final RecaH of BeHsariaa l» 

540 Boom again take» by the Gotfaa 134 

54»--iil PreparatkNMofiwiBlanfwiteGo- 

tfaio War I3S 

59B Oharaoterand Szpeditien of ihaBanneh 

Narsea 13» 

Defbal aad Death of Totila 137 

OonqaestofRosBobyNanea 138 

S53 Defeat and Death of Tolas, the laalKlaff 

of thoOoihs^..* 13^ 

lavaslon of Italy by tha Fiaaks airi Aia- 

BMUIBi 140. 

654 DeO*at of the Fvinhs and JJInaiSMBi bf 

Kaiaes 141 

554— 508 SenleaMBt of Italy I4& 

690 Invasion of the Bolflarlaaa. 148 

LastViekHyofBeltaarina^ 144 

501 Hie Diegraoe and Death ib 

560 Death and Gharaeier or Jusllnlan... 146 

5Sl-5!iO Ooneu 14f 

Earthquakes..... .« 140^ 

540Plagae-ilsOrl|taiandlfaiaee 140- 

549-^904 Extent and Doration 150 

CHAPTER XLIV. 

Jdba ^fjko Romtm Juritfmitttoi Tto Lmoo of 
(h« .ffiMe— 7%s 7V0<w TokHmofikoDoommmtn 
»71« LMUo of tko Poof U Tko Doomoo of Ite 
I JBdisto •/ Ihs JIhMtlratesaa/ An- 



r •/ Ihs JMtlratesaad Jhn- 
fororo—JkoXkorHHf of ik$ ObhWew 0»dM, Pon- 
dwto, JV^oeto, tmd hutStmin, of Jmothdm: I. 
Righto tf Pormomo, JL RighUofThmfO, HL 
PrioaU injwnoo ooU Jtctiono. TV. Gr&w tmd 



A. v. 

The<MTilerRonMnLaw 151 

Laws of the KhMi or Roma. UT 

FheTwelfeTaMeaoftheDeeenivin.... 19 

ThehrCharaetorandlainenea. 154 

Lr '":rr-t-7V 155 

D II '^ ^ L iitp Sf±ti&Le ...^,..«... ib. 

El, ! m: lJi^|V«U»1....,,^ 160 

Tl*!-' t%'<'i>"ipjQtKilieJt^ t., ,.*... ...... lb. 

ObnAtituLiaiuof Ll»e Etapervri'.^ i-* lb. 

Thr T^iilativc Powef --.^.^ 197 

Their KtMHfits ..*...*, 158 

Fhrnit nf Lhe Rnman T^w ...<..., lb. 

SatiOsHlon of iheCjvilLmWT^s* --••«• • 150 
A. V, e. »4aB 

303-648 TbainlPeslod. 1» 

Moona renon .*.....•.•■..•■•.«••• in. 

TMi^Patftod m^ 

Ih. 



CONTENTS. 




OnUMtt Trtbonim . 
OB^anTlnOodeorJaMlnUui ... 

53a--SnTMPuiitoeli<NrDtoB« ib. 

PniaeandCeMaraorifaeCodeaiMlFuidects ib. 



LoH oTtlM udent JurtapradMca. . 
Lont faoonataocy of Jt ' 
"llionoruie 



9M Second Bdllion 

aS8 The lutitatM 
I. Or PsMtom. 



165 
187 
ib. 
ib. 
ib. 
168 

171 



m oTOm PMsnul Antliority 

itiMl WItw 

Tbewlig ioai Uim orMurti 
nvadom of tin iDAtriiiMMiiai 
Liberty and Abuae of Dtnxee 
LimlntiOM of tbe Libei^ of Dtvorae 
IiiceeL np iffiMiiWi end Bnlerdi... • • 

Guaidlani and Werda 

n. Or TuKM. Rbdit of Proper^.. 

Of faklnrtauiee mud Soooeerioo 

ClTttDcsreee of Kindred 

ietrodocUoaendLibeitf ofTeelamente.. 178 

Lendee 179 

CbdlelliaiidTnMli lb. 

DLOrAornom 18D 



lai 
ib. 
182 
ib. 
184 
185 
186 
ib. 
ib. 
187 
188 

ib. 

mdOeUh 18D 

fCtTilJtirlipnMleiKe ib. 

CD AFTEE XLY. 
Ate ^f tkt rieiMiii Jhei*i Emtmm •/ tt« 

] ^ Ita!9 ht^ LmUmr4M^- JU $ p t i m md 

1 CM £s«r^hr-Or Jt» 



lataftae.. 

IV. OrCuiH»Ajn>Poiatii]tsm.. 

Beverlly of the Twetre Teblee. . 



Abolition or OWtrlon ofpenal Lewe . 
ItewtwJ of cephal Pimjehmenle . 

Meeaure of OQlIt 

UnDniml Yloa ' 



Btoour of tbe CbriMtan B mp e iu i i . 
Jadgmenie of the People 



Yohntarr Exile and Death . 
AbHcaoTC 



-DiHnu^f Jtow Clereffer 4 



90-914 Reifa oTJoeiin II. or the Tounfer . 
586 Hii CooanlaUp 



Ifti 
Ib. 

oftheATan ib. 

Kliv of tbe Lombaida-Ui Y*- 

loar»|jove,andXeven8e VtSt 

The Lombardi and Avaia daiiroy tlielUiif 



1 Kln|dDin of tbe Oeplds . 

iu aodiertaltei tbe Conqncrt of Italy. . 



SVr Albolu 

DIaallteikNi and Death of NaiBia 
^0^-596 Contiiwat of a great Part of Italy ^ 

tlieLombanle ns 

573 Alboln la murdered by hla WUb Raeaioond 196 

flor Fllabt aod Deatb 1V7 

CrepboTCiac of Un Lombard* ^^ 

WeakiWiB of the Emperor Joattn 196 

574 AameUdooofTlberlua ib. 

M Death of Juadn It 196 

578-^88 Bnign of Tiberioa U ib. 

Bia Vlrtiieo «6 

''^'^'""^ .g 



The Exarchate of RaTeana 9nt 

Tbe Kingdom of tbe Lombard! 908 

Language and llanncn of the Lombarda . \b. 

Dreaa and Marriage 90S 

Government ib. 

648 Lawa .*. 906 

Miiery of Some ib. 

The Tomba and Belica of the ApoaUea ... 908 
Birth and ProAaalon of Gregory the Boman ib. 

59CMi04 PontiOcate of Gregory the Gseat, or 

Plwt 90O 

Hla apbltual Odke lb 

And temporal GoTemment 210 

HiaEKaiea ib. 

AadAtam ibu 

TheSavteorofBOBM 911 

GBAPTEEZLYL 

lUwoiiUitms •/ PmnU^Ur tktDe^Atf CkMro99 
tr M\tskinmm^Mi» Son JiorwtouXt a 7>r«al, ta 



. 7>r«al,t 
d^oMd^OGrarpaiMii tf Bmkraat—FUght amm 
MuUrcHon •/ Omtom II.— His OratUmd* e» 



J Obu^aa rf tkt fiTtrr — ftrralf 
^ tke jirtMf agoMuit Jbutrue—Uig Dtatk— TV 
rmMMf •/ Pkoai»—EUomtiom «/* HermeUiu—T%$ 
FtrnoM Wv^Ck»»r— nthtbus 8|frM, Ji;fipl^ 
&nd Jtsio Mi»»r—Si€M4 ^ CndamUmoipUijfUiM 
Ptrtiaau mi jfvar#--J*er«Ms ETftditiona^FJe' 
toriu cad TVntMyA •/ JfaraebM. 
A«Bw Mas 

0(MMeatorileaMFaadPeiaia.... 9U 

SJOCoB^aeatof YeaMnbyNaaMnraD 91ft 

57»Hiala8tWarwil*tteB4MaaM. ibu 

579 Hla Death 9U 

57»^^S00 Tyraaay aad Ylaea of Ma Sao Ho^ 



806EiplotoofBahiam. 



HovaMNia ia daaoeed i 
Elevation of hla Boo ( 



B14 

U& 

. 916 

, ibb 

. SIT 

lb. 

. ib 

918 

ofPolkyofChoaraea.... ib. 

PridO) Polky) aad Power of the Cho- 

lao of the A van..... 91^ 

SB»-60B WaraofMaoi* 



Hla Betora, and flaal Yiatoiy • 
Death of Bahraaa.. 



'zse 



JaattheAvi 



BtMoofthel 
Thdp IHaoontent*.t 
AadBebeUoB . 
IBIeetiaaofl 
BevoltofC 
Death of Maoriee and hla Chttdieo.. 



Hia 

AndTyiaany 

610 Hla fWI aod Death 



603 Choaioea lovadea the Boi 
611 IMaOoaqoMlaf Syria... 
614 Of PWeellne 

•'•"'isr.- 



iHnplM 



Of 
HiaKeigaand 



i Hia 



699 FiMEspedltloa of Heraoliw agalaat the 



lb. 



sn 

S3B 
ft. 



698, 694,695 BkraeeoodEapedlUoB 

on DeUveranee of Oooatanilnople froaa the 
Peiilanaand Avaia 
AWaoeea and Ooaqw 

697 na iMtd BipedMoo 

* ■ ».« — ■ - 

Ana T KVOTNe. • • • • < 

nigBi or vooaroea* 

69BHeiB^ 



936 



GONTIfiNTS. 



CHAPTEE XLV1L 



Tke0i0gical aUUrp 9/ the Dttrims tf tk« htemr- 
naliwm TV Ummam amd Dtvm* M'Umn •/ 
Ckrist—Enmitif of tk» Ptrimrcka o/Jtlexamdnm 
41114 C9nttmUinopU-~SL CtprU mmd Jftstoriu*— 
'Third a^ntral CnmeU •f J^JUnw— //«rMy •/ 
jEHtyekM— A»ra OmmtoI CummcU ^ OUIe«fo« 
— Ctotl c«4 JEcdwtMtMoi niseard^htUUrmaut 
4(f JusUmioM—Tke Tkrte Cka^t0r»—Tke Mou*- 
tkMU G»»tr«Mr«f— 5UIC •/ tJU OrUnUA ZuU : 
L Tlu Uitttrwu—lh Tk* JMokiUa—UL TIU 
JMarviutM— IV. TTto Jhrntm im m t V. 7%* Gqrto 
— VL Tk$ Akif»n»umt. 

*. B. VA«S 

Tbe iDcanmUoo ofCbrliC 948 

L A pura Man to the EMooitM 943 

His Btnh and Blev«tloii ik. 

II. A pure God to Um DocelM 944 

Hta inoonrupUble Body 94S 

m. Double Nmtoie of OerinihiM 940 

IV. Divine locaniation of Apoilinmiii... ib. 

V. Onbodox CooMot and verbal Dla- 
putea 948 

419-444 Cyril, Patriarcb of Alexandria lb. 

413,414,415 Hia Tyranny 949 

'498 NeMoriua, Patrlarcb of Conatantinople .. 9S0 

499-431 HIsHereqr 9SI 

S» 
. 953 



CHAPTER XLVIIL 



431 First Consul of Epbeans . 

BofNestorlns. 



Opposition of the Ortentals Ib. 

431-435 Victory of Cyril 954 

435 Exile of Neaioriua 955 

448 Here^ofEutyehes 956 

449 aecood Council of Epbesua 957 

451 Council of Cbalcedon 

FaltbofChaleedon 

4S1— 489 Discord of the Eatt 960 

489 TheHenotioonofZeDO.. ib. 

MB— 518 The Trisagion. and religious War, 

tiO the Death of Aiiaataaius 961 

514 First religious War 963 

919-^565 Theological Gbaraeler and Goveni- 

ment of Justinian ib. 

His Persecution of Hersiica 964 

Of Pagans ib. 

Of Jews ib. 

OfBamaritans 965 

Bis Oithodoxy lb. 

09-488 The Three Chaptere lb. 

953 Vth General CouncU: lid of COMlantl- 



984 



1 General Gouneil : Hid of Oou- 



Berew of Justinian 

The llonothelite Gaotroveny 
The Ecthesis of Haracana . . . . 

"^-^ 

stantinopie 
Union of the Greek and Ijatin Churches. 
Pernetnal Separation of the Oriental Seels 

I. The Ncatorians 

BoieMMtersofPenia 

Thrir Missions in Tartary, India, 

China, itc 

The Christians of St. Thomas in India. . . 

IL TheJaeoUtes 

m. The MaroDiles 



538 
551 



IV. TheArmenians 

V. The CopM or Egyptians 

le Pacrlaieh^nieodoslus. . 



The] 

Paul 

Apollinaria . 



Their Separation and Decay 

U461 Benjamin, the Jacobite Patriarch. 

VL The AbvBslntau and Nubians 

SaO Church of Abynlnla 

1585-1580 The Poruigoese in Abysrinia .... 

1587 Mission of the JesttltB 

MM Oonverrion of the Emperor , 

MB PlulBxpuiriOBoftiM JeanlU 



90B 
980 
ib. 
930 

9n 

979 
> 973 

974 
. 976 

. wn 

.978 
ib. 
Ik 

. ib. 

.979 
ib. 
ib. 
980 
ib. 
981 



Plea nf lAf ^ 

mmd CkmrmeUn ^f Urn Ortek Emfmnrt •/ ^.^^ 
Hantimtple, fiwn Os TisM^ UmrmeUug le Os 
LmtmOntimmt. 

^ **• -. * '*«• 

Defects of the ByaantlneHislDry 9B 

Its Conntsxioo with Uie Bevoiutione of 

th«Worid 984 

Plan of the Remainder of the HJKory.... ib. 
Seooud Marrisis and Death of HeracUus 986 

641 CoostanUueill ib. 

Heracleouas ib. 

Puuislittient of Martina and Heracleouas. 987 

ConstausIL ib. 

668 Coiisuiitine nr. Pogoaaias 988 

685 JusUoiauII .7. ib. 

605-705 His Exile 980 

705-711 His Restoration and Death 9M 

711 Phllippicus 901 

713 Aiiastasius O ik 

716 Theodusius III lb. 

718 Leo 111. the [saurian ib. 

741 ConstanUiie V. Copronymus 999 

775 Leo IV T^.... 903 

780 Consianilne VL and Irene ib. 

799 Irene S04 

er9 NicephorusL 90 

811 Stauracius ib. 

Michael L Rhangabe ib. 

813 Leo V. the Armenian 9B6 

890 Michael IL the Stommeter.... 907 

8S0 Thenphiius Ibb 

849 Michael III 908 

867 Basil L the Macedonian 300 

886 Leo VL the Philosopher 309 

911 Alexander, Coustantine VIL Porphyroos- 

nitus f 308 

019 Romanus I. Lecaimsus ib. 

Chrisiopher, aiephen,CoostaAUne VHL ib. 

045 ConsUnUneVU |b. 

050 Romaiius IL iuiiior 304 

963 Nlcephonis II. Phocas ib. 

000 John Zimlsces, Basil H., Constantine IX 305 

070 Basil IL and Constantine IX. 308 

1085 Constandne IX. 307 

1098 Ronianus QL Arnrrus lb. 

1034 ftlichad IV. the Paphlagonian Ib. 

1041 Michael V. Calaphaics — 

1049 Zoe and Theodora 

Conauntine X. Monomachua. . 

1054 Theodora _ 

1050 Michael VLStratlotlcus lb. 

1057 Isaac L Oomnenus 309 

1050 Constantine XL Duces 310 

1067 Eudoeia lb. 

Romanus DL IMogenes ib. 

1071 Michael VIL Parapinaeea, Andronlcus L 

Consuntine XIL lb 

1078 Nicenhonis lU. Botanlatea 311 

1081 Alexius L Coninenus 319 

1118 John, or Caio-Johannes 313 

1143 Manuel 314 

1180 Alexius II 315 

CharacterandlirstadventnresofAdraaieiw lb. 

1183 Adronieufl L Comnenus 319 

IL Ai^us 391 



lb. 
lb. 



CHAPTER XLEX. 



Wtnkipf mmd PmnmOkm •/ tmui^m 
f IUU§ mmd JlesM— 7)m^psrorr Dmrnd- 
m P«|ics— OmfMi 
tirmmlu^MHabiiskmmt ef 
•/ CherCMK 



!L' 



JlesM— 7)mi]Mror|r Z>M#. 



mud Otrmmatimm ( 



imgms • - Rntarmttm 



mmd Dmemifmf lAs Ammu JSs»(r« 4a tk» Wm^ 
M»^mdme$ ^ /ta^r~Cbus frt ii^sn e/tts Or 



Introduction of 1 

Cbuich...e 

TtaalrWaoMp 



CONTENTS. 



]|B CouiM**** ••••••••••••••••■••••••••• SBS 

Oppoiitkm to hMfe woraUp lb. 

■JM Qio LooUiBkoiiinlMl.BiKllitonniiowwii TM 

7M TliBlr0yDod«LCoMUaUuo|ile 387 

TlMlr Oraod lb. 

n»— 77& TiMir fMraacattoa of tiM Imagw aod 

MoQks lb. 

But* of Italy 398 

m B|ii«lenrGABfforylLtotb«EBperar.... t9u 

. ?U Bavolt of Italj 331 

RitpaMieoriliMDe »8 

ISO— TU KomeaitackedbrtlMLombwdi... 933 

7M Her DeUvoraiiee by Pepin 334 

774 CfHMMMofLombardybyCbarieaMfiie.. 335 
751.7S3.788 Pepin and Charlemagne, Kingi 

ofPranee 336 

Patiieiane or Rome 337 

DooatkMW of Pepin and CbartooMgna to 

tbaPopee 838 

Foffery )f the Donation ofOnoetantlne.. 330 
780 ReMoratioo of Imagea In the Baal by tbe 

Empren Irene 348 

787 Vllth Gtmeral OooneU, lid oTNlce 341 

MS Final Eetabliahnienl of bnafn ^ ^^ 

EmpreM Tbetidttra lb. 

794 Relocianee of the Pranks and of Cbarlo- 

mane 348 

774—800 rliml Secvarniknv of ihe Popee from 

Tl**' f'a^ttrji t^riifiii* - .. , .....,,, ib. 

ADO Ccjnmjiil<>ri of (JliMrleinaffifl mt Kiupt^ror 

oi'Aoc^And ofUie Wvvi ..,»,^^...«.. 343 
W^-^\n avi)<n«ndCharati«rf»rc^tacici[i«pie 344 

ExtfTii ofhlt Empire; FrEin£tf *^... 346 

fipeln ; TuF; ; Geniiany ; flynfu^ ■'-... 347 
Hill Nuijclitviun and Enemies , ., ..i^..*.. 348 

Hii Snccc'Mn'n «>> p. **^ «**.■*> «i..». 348 

114— §B^ InlLiily ttk 

911 In U«rinmiiy»^-t-^'<-i'..* ^...^..* ib. 

1ST In V'rfthcc.., ......,«,». .«•..«.., ...... lb. 

' 814— B40 LbwUUvePloiii ,.... lb. 

&W"«5e I^Fihal« !..„,,. lb. 

a5^--flf7ri i^rt-iiti , ibw 

968 DiviMottotOm'Bmpife lb. 

868 Oibo, King of Oermany, reetofao and ap- 

proprlaMa the Weeiem Empire SSO 

< TranaaetionsoftbeWeetemaadBaaleni 

Empires lb. 

880— 188D Authority of tba Emperom In tba 

Bimlone of the Popes 351 

^^ Disorders ......•• ....■.•..••.....• ib. 

K(73 BeAwmationandClalmooftbeChoreh.* 3S3 
AotborkyoftheEmperonfaiRome..... ib. 

n8 RevoHof Alberlc lb. 

967 Of Pope John XU 3S4 

608OfiheOonsnlCre»eenans ib. 

•74— 1850 The KlMBdom of Italy 355 

lUB-1190 PraderleTT ib. 

1198-1990 Praderlen. ib. 

814-1850 I nd epsode n ee of the FrhMos of 

Oofmany 856 

1958 The Germanic OonsUtotion 357 

1347—1378 Wealtnem and Poverty of the Ger- 
man Emperor Cbarlea IV. 398 

J396HlsOHflniatlon ib. 

OoBirasi of the Power and Modosu of 
* -1 398 

OHAPTSa L. 

. » nT JtrOU — d «s HkmMtmi9^MHk, 
CUresUr, mad D»€HHm •/ JfaAMMl— Jib 
pr ee rt m «l Jto c so FUn to JBidina ^nmm 
gtin Mt fUUgimi »ytk« «WM-4-r#l«a<«ry er 
rslMctonI BrnkmigHn •/ tk» Araht^Mis D^mik 
midgncssMere— 7TtoCte<sumid Aitmnief.dK 
mndkit X)#semden(t. 

k-». ^ . _ TMrnu 
iMBsnption of AiaMa .•••••*•«•.•••.••• 350 
nwEoHairiCllmaia Au 



DMskm of the Bandy, the Blnqr, airi Ihe 

Happy Arabia 391 

Mannersof the Bedowoena^or Pastoral Arabs ii. 

TheHtirse 39f 

TheCamel ibi 

Cities of Arabia 393 

Mecca lb. 

Her Trade ib 

MattoMU Independence of the Arabe 3B« 

Their domeitic Freedom and Cbaraetsr... 30S> 

OItU Wars and private Bayenge 399 

Annual Truce ...••*....•• •....•.••••••• 307 

Their sodaiaoalifleations and Virtoes... lb. 

Loveof Poet^ 308 

Examples of Generosity ib. 

Ancient Idolatnr 399* 

The Caaba, or Temple of Mecca ib. 

Bacrlflces and Bites 379- 

Introduction of the Bablans 371 

TheMagians...... lb. 

The Jews lb. 

The Cbrlsttens Ibb 

968-990 Birth and Edocadon of Mahomel . .. STT 

DHIverance of Mecca lb 

OoalMlcaiions of the Prophet 97> 

One God 374 

Mahomet, the Apoetle of God, and the last 

ofthe Prophets 37B 

Moeea ....TTV. lb. 

Jesos lb. 

The Koran 377 

Miracles ITT 

Frooepis of Mahomel— Prayer, Fasting, 

Alms 319 

Besurreedoa 981 

HeU and Paradiae lb. 

669 Mahomet praacliee at Mecca 983 

613-689 Is opposed by the Korelsb 384 

688 And driven from Mecca lit 

688 Becelved as Prince of Medina 999- 

699-638 His rsgalDlgnhy 389> 

He denies War against the Infldds lb. 

His delboelve War against the Korelsh of 

Meeca .7. 39B 

683 BaitleofBeder ib. 

OfOhttd 389- 

699 The Nations, or tho Ditch lb. 

899-687 Mahometenbdues the Jews of Arabia Ib 

690 Bobmlsslon of Mecca 981 

680— 639 Conquest of Arabia SOB 

8», 680 Flfst War ofthe Mahomecaaa against 

the Boman Empire 993 

638 Death of Mahomet 39i 

His Character 398 

Private Life of Mahomet 397 

His Wives 39B 

AndCMIdran 398 

Character of All ib^ 

638 Beign of Abnbeker dOO^ 

•34 —of Omar lb. 

•44 ofOthmaa ib. 

Diseord of the Turks and Fecaiana 491' 

655 Death of Othman lb. 

655-660 Beiffnof AU 40Br 

655,or061-4H0 BelgnofMbawlyah 403 

680 Deathof Hneein 404 

Poeierity of Mahomet and All 485. 

Boecem of Mahomet 408: 

Permanency of hie Beligion fk^ 

HtoMarillowafdblsOoantiy dOT 

CHAFTEB LL 

71s Cbnfasst itf Fsrvte, Arrto, BlriF** •^A-'M, aa# 

^efa, hw Of jfrafts er Bmrmemu^Emmtrt tf Or 

dblMs, er •mmsmm'S •/ JfaAesMe— Slato ^Tttr 

CkrtBtUmMt 4rt» wmimr Ot** Q ss wn s nnl . 

k.9. WAitm- 

•38 Unimi of tba Arabs 48» 

Charaetaraf their Caliphs dO^ 



vm 



CONTENTS. 



A 9 9kam 

Their CoMttMli 410 

Invasion of Perafm 411 

ttO BMUeorCadtda 41S 

Foundation of BsBsora 413 

407 BaciiofMailayn ib. 

Foundation olCufa 414 

437— 651 Conquest of Peraia Ib. 

4151 Deaili of Uie last King 415 

710 Tbe Conquert of Tranaoriana 410 

693 Invasion of Syria 417 

Siege of Bosra 418 

403 of Damascus 410 

403 Battle of Aiznadin 490 

The Arabs relurn to Damascus 481 

434 Tbe City is takto by Stonn and Canittt- 

laUon 488 

Pursuit of the Da ma sca a s s 483 

Falrof Abyla 4SS 

ess Sieges of UeliopoUi and Enesa Ib. 

•36 BaUleofYcrmuk 487 

037 Conquest of Jerusalem 488 

188 of Aleppo and Antioch 480 

Flight of HeracUus ^..... 431 

End of tlie Syrian War T..... ib. 

40S— 630 The Conquerors of Syria 438 

610—655 ProgreM of the Syrian Conquerors . lb. 

Eevrr. Character and Lift of AmnMi.. 433 
698 Invasion of Egypt 434 

The ClUes of Meoiphls, Babylon, and 
Cairo 435 

Voluntary Submission of the Copts, or 
Jacobites 436 

Siege and Conquest of Aleiaadria 437 

The Aiezandriau Library 438 

AdmlnlstraUon of E^pt 440 

Biches and Popukmsness ib. 

«I7 ArmiCA. First Imraidoii by Abdallah.... 446 

TbePrefeaGteinryaadhiBDaiiifater.. tt>. 

Victory of the Arabs 443 

61 5 000 Pnv«aa of tlw PiiYnr- «,,. in Africa.. 444 
'670— ff75 Found Rtirifi of Calroan ..,.,,..*,.. 445 
<S02— 4KW Cnnciur-rt of Carihage .-.-.".*...• 446 
Wd-im Find CoEiqit«ii of AfrJM .'*......« 447 

Adopiion of ihc Mnon, ^* « ■. » ^ . ^ *««.*, .. . 448 
*im Sfaim. Tint TcDipt^Uona and I>wigaa 

uf Lbc Arabs ■■■.........,...,.,«.,,•• ib. 

9tai€or LheGcFthl£Maiiwt:Uy ., 610 

no TiK dm DeK«m uTUhj Arabs 406 

^1 Timf fecoiicl |)f!S<:«nt imd VLctorT • ib* 

Ruin of the GifUilc Alonaichy.. .,....,•• 461 
718,7)3 Conquutori^fkaiD^yMiua... <..... 4M 
7H himgrncr^f MatM.. *........ ,^., 454 

prosperity of Mftali) under ilm Arabs 466 

Rfrl^lkmi T^ilrt uiion . » , * ..,,....., 496 

!'n>>pagB lion of Haboirketaaimi ■ ^ ....... • ft. 

Full of Llie MojEians of Feriia.. ...... ^,,. 457 

740 Dix\lm and Fait Df ChrlsUsjiity In Afriea 488 
1140 And Btm\n 496 

Tulerailon vf tliv Chrlstiaaa 1, *«„«.<. ... lb. 

Thrir I^ardsTiips ...^,- ., ...»...,.. •^,«. 666 
tIS The Empire of Um Call^ , i^b 



CHAPTER LIL 



Vke Tw0Si$ft99f Qri m aa l iais l i hf 6te Jt t m kg 

TTkmr fnmmmtn •/•#VtBM)6, vndD^fUt kg Glarlse 
afsrtel— OhftI Wtur tftMt OmmUiUt and jibkiw 



l^ mrm k t f •/ Me Jtrak^^Lusuff 9/ Ms 

CoUfks—M'mnJ BmUr^ri04» en CteU, «MJy, end 

en^ ZXviMM s/Oe £Mip^ of Ms 






6r$tk 



A.D. Ttmm 

The Limits of the Arabian Conquests .... 461 
668 675 First Siege of Constantinople by the 

Arabs ib. 

677 Peace and Tribute 466 

716-718 Secoud Siege of Constantinople 463 

Failure and Retreat of the Saraceiia 46f 

Invention and Use of the Greek Fire ib. 

791 Invasion of France by the Arabs 467 

731 Expedition and Victories of Abderame ... 468 
736 Defeat of the Saracena by Charlea Martd . 400 

They retreat before the Franks 470 

746—750 Elevation of the Abbaasidea lb. 

750 FalloftheOmmlades ^ 476 

756 Revolt of Spain Ik. 

Triple Division of the CaHphate ib. 

750-060 Magnificence of the CaUpba 473 

Its Consequences oo private aad pabUc 

Happiness 4t4 

734, 4cc. 813, kc IntroductioD of Learning 

among the Arabians 475 

Thehr real Progreei in the Soieaces 496 

Want of Eniditlon, Taste, and Freedom . . 478 
781—805 Wars of Barun al Raahid rjiiMt 

the Romans 470 

8B3 The Arabs subdue the Ue of Crate.... ... 486 

807-e78 AodofSkily 481 

816 Invasion of Rome by the Saraoeas 401 

840 Victory and Reign of Leo IV 461 

8SB FoundaUon of the Leonine City 464 

8K The Amorian War between TheepliilBs 

and Moiasaem ........................ ft, 

841-870 Disorders of the TurUeh Onasds .... 466 

860-051 Else and Progress of tbeCanwifttna 667 

060 Their military EzpMlB ft. 

090 They piBags M e cca.... ogs 

866-^130 Revolt of the Ptavineea ft 

The todapendsnt Dynaetiea ft 

660-068 The Aglabites ; the EdiWMa: the 
TabecUes; the fiMftddei; the Brnmrn- 
ides : the ToolenidaB ; Che Hwhidiiai... 486 
866-1055 The Hamadanites: the BesvMaa... 400 
666 Fallen flaia of the Cidl|fta«r]ltidad..... tti 
060 EntaipitaMortheGraalB....^ ^. 401 

Rednclfcm of Crete -. ft. 

6M-675 The Eastern Conf ana of Wieapha- 

nw Fhocaa, and John flmiaw ft. 

GonqoeaterCUUia 466 

iBVMloaof S/ria ...- ft. 

BeeoreryorAntkwh fti. 

>eC iDe B uaH i nfta »—»♦■»«>—<♦».. -466 

QrBt6M. •*••• .. ft 



HISTORY 

OF THE 

DECLINE AND FALL 

or 

the: romak bmpibBc 



CHAPTER XXXIX. 



Zeno and AnastasitUfemperort of the East — Birihf educaJionj and Jint ixploUs 
of Tktodoric the Ostrogoth — ^Jttt invasion and conquest qf holy — The Croihk 
kingdotn of Italy-State of the West^MUiiary and cvou gcvermneni^^The 
senator Boetkius — Last acts and death of Theoaoric, 

» [A. D. 476— ^37.J After the fall of the Roman empire in the West, an 
mterval of fiAy years, till the memorable reign of Justinian, is faititiy marked 
by the obscure names and ihiperfect annals of Zeno, Anastasius, and Justin, 
who successively ascended the throne of Constantinople. During the same 
period, Italy revived and flourished under the government of a wthic king, 
who might have deserved a statue among the best and bravest of the ancient 
Romans. 

fA. D. 455—^75.1 Theodoric the Ostrog[oth, the fourteenth in lineal descent 
of the royal line of toe Aroali,(l) was bom in the neighbourhood of Vienna,( 2) 
two years afber the death of Attila.* A recent victory had restored the inae- 
pendence of the Ostroeoths; and the three brothers, Walamir, Theodemir, 
and Widimir, who ruled that warlike nation with united counsels, had sepa- 
rately pitched their habitations in the fertile though desolate province of Pan- 
nonia. The Huns still threatened their revolted subjects, but their hast^ 
attack was repelled by the single forces of Walamir, and the news of his 
victory reached the distant canip of his brother in the same auspicious moment 
that toe favourite concubine of Theodemir was delivered of a son and heir. 
In the eighth year of his age, Theodoric was reluctantly yielded by his father 
to the public mterest, as the pledge of an alliance which Leo, emperor of the 
East, had consented to purchase by an annual subsidy of three hundred pounds 
of gold* The royal hostage was educated at Constantinople with care and 

O) Jomaadcf {4t rebus Oeticli, c. 13, U, p^ CM, 9S0. edit GroL) has drawn the pedigrae of Tfaeodario 
TOB Gapt, one of Uie ^imm, or demigodt, who lived about the time of DomJUan. Oattiodoilua, the flnt 
wiM ceJebratet the royal race of Um Amall (Varler. vlii. 5, iz. S5, z. S,x1. 1), reckoiia the iraiidaoii of 
Tbaodoiio aa Uie zvUth In doMsenL PerfngKiold (Uie Swedish coouneniator of Oochtoiis. Vk. 
Tbeodoric p. 971, &c Btockbolin, 160A,) labouza to connect Uils genealogy wldi tbe legends or traditlow 
arUB oattva oountry.t 

(9) Han eorvecUy on the banks of Uw lake Pelso (Nleosiedler-aee) near Camuntttm, almost on tto 
ame Mot where Marens Antoninos composed his meditations (Jornandes, e. Sl| p. 058. Beverta Pas- 
MBib iDastrata, p. 9^ CeDtrius, Geograndi. Antiq. lom. i. p. 350). 

VoXm 1II.««-B * ^^ aMitiooal noica, aee end of this Toloma. 



t THE D£cLiT<£ AND FALL 

tenderness. His bod^ was formed to all the exercises of war, bis mind wai 
expanded by the habits of liberal conversation ; he freauented the schools of 
the most skilful masters; but he disdained or neglected the arts of Greece, and 
so ignorant did he always remain of the first elements of Science, that a rude 
mmi was contrived to represent the si^ature of the illiterate king of Ital^.(3) 
As soon as he had attained the age ofeighteen, he was restored to the wishes 
of the Ostrogoths, whom the emperor aspired to gain by liberality and con« 
fidence. Walamir had fallen in battle ; the Youngest of the brothers, Widimii^ 
had led away into Italy and Gaul an army of Barbarians, and the whole nation 
acknowledged for their king the father of Theodoric. Hi5 ferocious subjects 
admired the strength and stature of their young prince ;(4) and he soon con* 
vinced them that be had not degenerated from the valour of his ancestors* At 
the bead of six thousand volunteers he secretly left the camp in quest of adven^ 
tures, descended the Danube as far as Singidunum or Belgrade, and soon 
returned to his father with the spoils of a Sarmatian king whom he had van^ 
quished and slain. Such triumphs, however, were productive only of fame^ 
and the invincible Ostrogoths were reduced to extreme distress hj the want ot 
clothing and food. They unanimously resolved to desert their Pannonian 
encampments, and boldly to advance mto the warm and wealthy neighbouF« 
hood of the Byzantine court, which already maintained in pride and luxuir so 
many bands of confederate Goths. After proving by some acts of bostnity 
that they could be dangerous, or at least troublesome enemies, the Ostrogothi 
sold at a high price tbeir reconciliation and fidelity, accepted a donative of 
lands and money, and were intrusted with the defence of the lower Danubef 
under the command of Theodoric, who succeeded afler his fatber^s death to 
the hereditaiy throne of the Amali.(6) 

[A. D. 474^-491.] A hero, descended from a race of kings, must have 
despised the base Isaurian who was invested with the Roman purple, without 
any endowments of mind or body, without any advantages of royal birth, of 
superior qualifications. After the failure of the Theodosian line, the choice of 
Pulcheria and of the senate might be justified in some measure by the charac- 
ters of Martian and Leo, but the latter of these princes confirmed and dis« 
honoured bis reign by the perfidious murder of Aspar and his sons, who too 
rigorously exacted the debt of gratitude and obedience. The inheritance of 
Leo and of the East was peaceably devolved on his infant grandson, the son of 
bis daughter Ariadne ; and her Isaurian husband, the fortunate Trascalisseus, 
exchanged that barbarous sound for the Grecian appellation of Zeno. After 
the decease of the elder Leo, he approached with unnatural respect the throne 
of his son, humbly received, as a gift, the second rank in the empire ; and 
soon excited the public swipicion on the sudden and premature death of bis 
oung colleague, whose lite could no longer promote the success of his am<» 
lition. But the palace of Constantinople was ruled by female influence, and 
agitated by female passions : and Verina, the widow of Leo, claiming his 
empire as her own, pronounced a sentence of deposition against the wnrt bless 
and ungrateful servant on whom she alone had bestowed the sceptre of the 
£ast.(6} As soon as she sounded a revolt in the ears of Zeno, he fled with 
precipitation into the mountains of Isauria, and her brother Basiliscus, already 
infamous by his African expedition,(7) was unanimously proclaimed by the ser^ 

(3) The fini fimr leCten of bit name (6E0A) were inaeilbed on a eoM plate, and when tt wat filed va 
fhepaper, Uie ktaig drew hte pen Uirongh Uw taiienratai (Anoaym. Vatoian. ad Calcem Amm. MarceUla. 
pw TV), Thta authentic tet, whh the tea^ioMioj of Prooopliu, or at leait of the conieinporary GodM 
(6oUii«. L I. c. 9, p. 311), flir outweigha the vague pcaiaee or Ennodiui (Birmond. Opera, torn. I. p. UB6), 
■ndTheophanes (Chronotraph. p. IIS).* 

(4) Btatura eM qua radlgnet prooerltate regnantem (Bmodiw, p. 1614). The Mahop of Pavla (t meaa 
Hm eodealaittc who wtehed to oe a bWiop) then prooeeds to celehrate the comptezfam, eyee, han^i, &e. of 
bla wveieigu. 

(5) The Mate of the OetrofollM, and the fine yean of Theodorle, are found In Jomandee (c. 89->M| 
p. 6w— 6M,) and Malchut (Biceqit. LogaL p. 78— 80),' who enoocoualy Mylei him the eon of Walanlr. 

(0) Theophanei (p. Ill,) Insert! a copy of her aaerei letten to the provincef, t^ on /SwiXceov mttftpmf 

an mu en vpexem^atuBa fiaaiAaa TptmcmKlummt^Bt, iuoh Anude preleMloM wonM ha?a 

■ftonlibed the ilaves of tbe/ral CMan. 

0) Vol iU. 1^971,373. 



bi 



OP TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. t 

¥lte senate. But the reign of the usurper was short and turbulent. Baailiscus 
piesunied to aasaasinate the lover of bis sister ; be dared to offend the lover of 
liis wife, the vain and insolent Harmatius^ who, in the midst of Asiatic luzum 
affected the dress^ the demeanour, and the sumame of Achilles. (8) By the 
conspiracy of the malecontents, Zeno was recalled from exile ; the armies, the 
capital, the penon of Basiliscus, were betrayed ; and his whole family was 
condemned to the long agony ot cold and hunger by the inhuman conqueror, 
who wanted courage to encounter or to ibr^ve his enemies.* The haurhty 
q)irit of Verina waa still incapable of subminion or repose. She provoked tfaie 
enmity of a favourite general, embraced his cause as soon as he was disgraced. 
«:reated a aew emperor in Syria and Cgypt,^ised an army of seventy tfeusand 
■len, and persisted to the last moment of her life in a fruitless rebellion, which, 
According to the fashion of the age, had been nredicted by Christian hermits 
and Pagan maficis^. While the Cast was afflicted by the passions of Verina, 
her daii^ter Ariadne was distinguished by the female virtues of mildness and 
fidelity ; she followed her husband in his exile, and after his restoration she 
implored his clemency in fevour of her mother. On the decease of Zeno» 
Anadne> the daughter, the mother, and the widow of an emperor, gave her 
hand and the imperial title to Anastasius, an aged domestic of the palace, who 
survived his elevation above twentj^eeven years, and whose character is attested 
by the acclamation of the people, ** Reign as you have lived !"(9)* 

{A. D. 476—488.] Whatever fear or affisction could bestow, was profusely 
bvisbed by Seno on the king of the Ostrogoths ; the rank of patrician and 
consul, the command of the Palatine troops, an equestrian statue, a treasure in 
gold and silver of many thousand pounds, the name of son, and the promise ot 
« rich and honourable wife. As long as Tkeodoric condescended to serve, he 
supported with courage and fidelity Ae cause of his benefactor : his rapid 
march contributed to the restoration of Zeno ; and in the second revolt, the 
Walandrif as they were called, pursued and pressed the Asiatic rebels, till 
Ihey leA an easy victory to the imperial troops.(10) But the faithful servant 
was suddenly converted Into a formidable enemy, who spread the fiames of 
war from Constantinople to the Adriatic ; many flourishing cities were reduced 
to ashes, and the agriculture of Thracs was almost extirpated by the wanton 
tnuehy of the Goths, who deprived their captive peasants of the right hand 
that guided the ploi4h.(ll) On such occasions, Tneodoric sustained the loud 
tuid specious reproach of disloyalty, of ingratitude, and of insatiate avarice, 
which could be only excused by the hard necessity of his situation. He 
)!eigned, not as the monarch, but as the minister of a ferocious people, whose 
aotrit was unbroken by s/aver^, and impatient of real or imaginary insults. 
Their poverty was incurable : since the most liberal donatives were soon dis- 
sipated in wasteful luxuiy, and the most fertile estates became barren in their 
hands; they despised, but they envied, the laborious provincials; and when 
their subsistence had failed, the Ostrogoths embraced the familiar resources of 
war and rapine* It had been the wish of Tbeodoric (such at least was his 
declaration,) to lead a peaceable, obscure, obedient life, on tiie confines of 
Scythia, till the Byzantine court, by splendid and fallacious promises, seduced 
him to attack a confederate tribe of Goths, who bad been engaged in the party 
of Basiliscus. He marched from his station at Mssia, on the solemn assuranoe 
that before he reached Adrianople, he should meet a plentiful convoy of pro> 



(8) BoMm, torn. L p. 339, 333, edit Kiutar. 

(9) Tbe contemporary histories or MaJcbus tod Candkliis are lost : but some extracts or fragments bav« 
been ttved by Pbotlus (IxxvUk Ixxiz. p. 100—108), Constaadne ForpkyrMenUus (Eicerpt. Lee. p. 79—07), 
and in various articles of the laexicon of Suidaa. The Chronicle of Marcellinus CEmago Hlftorlie) are 
originals for the neigns of Zeao aiyl Anastaslns; and T must acknowledge, almost for the last time, my 
oUimtions to tile large and accurate collections of TlUemont (Hist, dee Snap. torn. vi. p. 473— <9B). 

(10) In Ipsls eongiesslonis tuc forihus cessit tnvasor, cnm prof v/fo per te sceptre rraderentnr de satotB 
dnbhantl. Ennodlus then proceeds (p. 1596, 1507, torn. i. Sirroond,) to transport his hero (on a Hying 
dragon !) Into iSthlopia, beyond the tropic of Cahcer. The evidence of the valeslan fragment (p. 717), 
Uberatus (Brev. Eutycn. e. S5, p. 118), land Theopbanes (p. Ill), is moi« sober and rational. 

(11) This cruel practice is specially Imputed to the Tnarian Goths, leas barbaroua, as It should seenn 
Itaithe Walamira. batttMMaof Tlwodaoiria diaiged with Uk mia of ma^y Romaa citlei (Hatebot 

^•jTC-p'- ''^' P^ W). 

» B 2 



4 THE DECLINE AND f ALL 

visions, and a reinforcement of eight thousand horse, and thirty thousand fotilk 
wnile the legions of Asia were encamped at Heraclea to second his operations* 
These measures were disappointed by mutual jealousy. As he advanced into 
Thrace, the son of Theodemir found an inhospitable solitude, and his Gothic 
followers, with a heavy train of horses, of mutes, and of wagons, were betrayed 
by their ffuides among the rocks and precipices of Mount Sondis, where he was 
assaulted by the arms and invectives of Tneodoric the son of Triarius. From 
a neighbouring height, bis artful rival harangued the camp of the fValaminf 
and branded their leader with the opprobrious names of child, of madman,- of 
penured traitor, the enemy of his Dlood and nation. ** Are you ignorant," 
exclaimed the son of Trianus, ^ that it is the constant policy of the Romans 
* to destroy the Gk)tbs by each otber^s swords ? Are you insensible that the 
victor in this unnatural contest will be ezpo«ed, and justly exposed, to their 
implacable revenge ? Where are those warriors^ my Kinsmen and thy own* 
whose vvidows now lament that their lives were sacrificed to thy rash amoition T 
Where is the wealth which thy soldiers possessed when they were first allured 
from their native homes to enlist under thy standard ? Each of them was then 
master of three or four horses ; they now follow thee on foot like slaves, through 
the deserts of Thrace ; those men who were tempted by the hope of measuring 
gold with a bushel, those brave men who are as free and as noble as thyself. 
A language so well suited to the temper of the Goths, excited clamour and 
discontent ; and the son of Theodemir, apprehensive of being left alone, was 
compelled to embrace his brethren^ and to imitate the example of RomaA 
perfidy.(12)* 

[A. D. 489.] In every state of bis fortune, the prudence and firmness'of Theo« 
doric were equally conspicuous ; whether he threatened Constantinople at the 
head of the confederate Goths, or retreated with a faithful band to tlie moun- 
tains and sea-€oast of Epinis. At length the accidental death of the son ot 
Triarius(ld) destroyed the balance which the Romans had been so anxious to 
preserve the whole nation acknowledged the supremacy of the Amali, and the 
Byzantine court subscribed an ignominious and oppressive treaty. (14) The 
senate had already declared that it was necessaiy to choose a parly among the 
Goths since the public was unequal to the support of their united forces ; a 
subsidy of two thousand pounds of gold, with the ample pay of thirteen thou* 
sand men, were required for the least co(«iderable of their armies ;(1 6) and 
the Isaurians, who guarded not the empire but the emperor, enioyed, besides 
the privilege of rapine, an annual pension of five thousand pounds. The saga- 
cious mindof Theodoric soon perceived that he vvas odious to tbe Romans, and 
suspected by tbe Barbarians ; he understood the popular murmur, that his sub- 
jects were exposed in tbeir frozen huts to intolerable hardships, while theit 
kinf^ was dissolved in tbe tuxunr of Greece, and he prevented the painful alter 
native of encountering the Gotns, as the champion, or of leading them to the 
field as the enemy, of Zeno. Embracing an enterprise worthy of his courage 
and ambition, Theodoric addressed the emperor in tbe follow ing words: 
*' Althot>gh your servant is maintained in afiluence by your liberality, graciously 
listen to the wishes of my heart! Italy, the inheritance of your predecessors, 
and Rome itself, the head and mistress of the world, now Uuctuate under the 
violence and oppression of Odoacer the mercenary. Direct me, with my 
national troops, to march against the tyrant. If I fall, you will be relieved 
from an expensive and trouolesome friend : if, with the Divine permission, I 

(13) Jornaodei (c 56, 57, p. 696.) ditplays the wrvicea of Theorloric, confcsKs his rctvards, but Ai§ 
WDibloB hia revolt, of which such curious details have been preserved by Malchus (Excerpt. Legat. 
p. 78—67}. MarcellinuB, a domestic of Justinian, under whose fourth consulship (A. D. 534,} ho 
composea his Chronicles (Scaliger, Theanurus Trmporum, P. ii. p.*34— 57), betrays his prejudice and 

paesloo : in Grcclam debacchantcro Zenonis niuniflceutiA pene i>acattt8 twoeociis ounquam 

■■Uatus, k.c 

(13) As be was riding In his own camp, an unruly horse threw hfm against the point of a spear, whiek 
hung before a tent, or was flxod on a wagon (Harcellin. in Cbron^ Evagrius, I. iii. c. 85}. 

(14) See Malchus (p. 91,) and Evagrius (I. Iii. c. 35). 

(19) Malchus, n. 65. In a single action, which was decided by the skill and discipline of Sablnlan, 



^T^ 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. • 

tccc«d^ I shall eoTem in jour name, and to your ^lory, tbe Roman senate, 
and die part of the repubhc delivered from slavery by my victorious arms/' 
The proposal of Tbeoaoric was accepted, and perhaps haa been suggested by 
the Byzantine couit. But the forms of the commission or mnt appear to 
have been ezpressed with a prudent ambiguity, which might be explained 
by the event; and it was left doubtful whether the conqueror of Italy 
should reign as the lieutenant, the vassal, or the ally of the emperor of the 
i;ast.(l6) 

The reiwtatioa both of the leader and of the war diffused a universal 
ardour ; the Walandn were multiplied by the Gothic swarms already engac^ed 
in the service, or seated in the provinces, of the empire ; and each bold bar- 
barian, who had heard of the wealth and beauty of Italy, was impatient to 
seek throofh the most peiilous adventures, the possession of such enchanting 
objects. The march ot Theodoric must be considered as the emigration of an 
entire people ; the wives and children of the Goths, their aged parents, and 
most precious effects, were carefully transported ; and some idea may be 
formea of the heavy baggage that now followed the camp, by the loss ot two 
thousand wagons, which had been sustained in a single action in the war of 
fipinis. For their subsistence, the Groths depended on the magazines of com 
which wasground in portable mills by the handsof their women; on the milk 
and flesh oftbeir flocks and herds ; on tbe casual produce of the chase, and 
upon the contributions which they mi^ht impose on all who should presume 
to dispute the passage, or to refuse their friendly assistance. Notwithstanding 
these precautions, they were exposed lo the danger, and almost to the distress 
of famine, in a march of seven hundred miles, which had been undertaken in 
the depth of a rieorous winter. Since the fall of the Roman power, Dacia 
and Fannonia no ioneer exhibited the rich prospect of populous cities, well 
cultivated fields, andf convenient highways : the reign of barbarism and de- 
solation was restored, and the tribes of Bulgarians, Uepidae, and Sarmatians, 
who had occupied the vacant province, were prompted by their native fierce- 
ness, or the solicitations of Odoacer, to resist the progress of his enemy. In 
many obscure though bloody battles, Tbeodoric fought and vanquished ; till at 
length, surmounting every obstacle by skilful conduct and perseverii^ courage, 
he descended from the Julian Alps, and displayed his invincible Jbanners on 
(he confines of Italy .(17) 

Odoacer, a rival not unworthy of his arms, had already occupied the advan- 
tageous and well^nown post ot the river Sontius near the ruins of Aquileia ; at 
the head of a powerful host, whose independent hi$igi{lQ^ or leaders disdained 
tbe duties of subordination and the prudence of delays. No sooner had Theo- 
doric granted a short repose and refreshment to his wearied cavaliy, than he 
boldly attacked the fortifications of the enemy ; tbe Ostrogoths showed more 
ardour to acquire, than the mercenaries to detend, tbe lands of Italy ; and the 
reward of the first victory was the possession of the Venetian province as far as 
the walk of Verona. In the neighbourhood of that city, on the steep banks of 
the rapid Adige, he was opposed by a new army, reinforced in its numbers, 
and not impaired in its couraee : the contest was more obstinate, but the event 
was still more decisive ; Oooacer fled to Ravenna, Theodoric advanced to 
Milan, and the vanquished troops saluted their conqueror with loud acclama- 
tions of respect and fidelity, ftut their want either of constancy or of faith, 
soon exposed him to the most imminent danger; bis vanguard, with several 
Gothic countSyWbich had been rashly intrusted to a d«?serter, was betrayed and 
destroyed near Faenza by his double treachery : Odoacer again appeared 
master of tbe field, and the invader, strongly entrenched in his camp ofPavia, 

(10) Jornandet (e. 57, n. 096, fl07,) hM abridged the xremt history of OaMlodorliM. Am, eoBipare, and 
Meonclle, Proeopiui (OoUilc. 1. i. e. 1), the ValeiteD Fragment (p. 718), TtMC^fbaam (p. 1I3), and Marcel- 
ltBi]fl(inCbnMi.) 

' (17) Tlieodorle** march to sapfrtled and illaatrated by Eanodiut (p. 19Qft-ie0S), when Um bombaat ot 
Ihe orvtion Is translated htto tbe langna^ of common aenM. 

m Tot re|f«, &e. (Eonodiua, p. 1QQ3.) We must recollect how mach the royal title was mi 
■■4«^gEaded, and Uiat the merceoariea of Ita^ ware Uie fragments of maoy tribes and natioBa. 



• THE DECLINE AND FALL 

was fMluced to solicit the aid of a kindred nation, the Visigoths of Gaal. In 
the course of this history, the most voracious aopetite for war will be abun- 
dantly satiated, nor can f much lament that our dark and imperfect materials 
do not afibrd a more ample nairative of the distress of Italj, and of the fierce 
conflict, which was finally deckled by the abilities, experience, and valour of 
the Gothk; king. Immediately before the battle of Verona, be Tisited the teat 
of his motber(19) and sister, and requested, that on a day, the most illastrmus 
festival of his life, they would adorn him with the rich garments which they 
had worked with their own hands. ** Our gloiy,'* said he, ^ is mutual and 
inseparable. Yoa are known to the world as the mother of Theodoric ; and 
it becomes me to prove that I am the genuine ofl&pring of those heroes fifXHn 
whom I claim my descent." The wife or concubine of Theodemir was 
inspired with the spirit of the German matrons, who esteemed their sons* 
honour far above their safety : and it is renorted, that in a desperate action, 
when Theodoric himself was hunied along by the torrent of the flying crowd, 
she boldly met them at the entrance of tne camp, and, by lier generous 
reproaches, drove them back on the swords of the enem]r.(20] 

[A. D. 493.] From the Alps to the extremity of Calabria, Theodoric reigned 
hy the right of conquest : the Vandal ambassadors surrendered the island of 
Sicily, as a lawful appendage of his kingdom ; and he was accepted as the 
deliverer of Rome by the senate and people, who had shut their gates against 
the flying usurper, (fl) Ravenna alone, secure in the fortificatbns of art and 
nature, still sustained a siege of almost three years ; and the daring sallies of 
Odoacer carried slaughter and dbmay into the Gothic camp. At length, des- 
titute of provisions and hopeless pf relief, that unfortunate monarch yielded to 
the groans of his subjects and the clamours of his soldiers. A treaty of peace 
was negotiated by me bishop of Ravenna ; the Ostrogoths were admitted into 
the city, and the hostile ki^gs consented, under the sanction of an oath, to nile 
with equal and undivided authority the provinces of Italy. The event of such 
an agreement ma^ be easily foreseen. After some days had been devoted to 
the semblance of joy and friendship, Odoacer, in the midst of a solemn banquet, 
was stabbed by the hand, or at least by the command, of his rival. Secret 
and effectual orders had been previously despatched ; the faithless and rapa- 
cious mercenaries, at the same moment, and without resistance, were uni- 
versally massacred; and the royalty of Theodoric was proclaimed by the 
Goths, with the tardy, reluctant, ambiguous consent of the emperor of the East. 
The design of a conspiracy was imputed, accordinp to the usual forms, to the 

E rostrate tyrant, but his innocence, and the guilt of his conqueror,(22) are suf- 
ciently proved by the advantageous treaty which /brce would not sincerely 
have granted, nor weahie$$ have rashly infringed. The jealousy of power, and 
the mischiefe of discord, may sugeest a more decent apology, and a sentence 
less rigorous may be pronounced against a crime which was necessary to 
introduce into Italj[ a «?neration of public felicity. The Itvii^ avtbor of this 
felicity was audaciously praised in his own presence by sacred and profane 
orators ;(23) but history On bis time she was mute and inglorious) has not lef\ 
any just representation ot the events which displayed, or ojf the defects, which 

(10) See Eonodlut, ^ 1603, ISM. Since Uie orsti>r. In tbe Un|*s preMoee, could menilon and pntoo 
his mother, we mny conclude Uuu UMmngnnaijulijr ot Tlieodork wee not hurt by iJie vu](ar reproncbee 
«f concubine end baetard.* 

(90) Thie anecdote la iclatad on tbe modem but re»pecuMe auibority of SkMNihie (op. torn. 1. p. 580l 
Pe OccldenL Imp. L zv.) : bie words are curloue— ** Would you return T* Jte. Bbe preaeated and almooi 
diaplayed the original rocicea t 

(81) Hint Mlaoell. I. XT. a Homan tabtory frem Janoa to the feth century, an Epitome of Eutmpkia, 
Faulna Diaoonna, and Tbeophanaa, which Mnraiorl taaa publkhed from a MS. in tbe Ambroalan Ubtmiy 
(Script Beram Italicarum, torn. L p. lOU). 

(SS) Proeoplua (Gotlilc L 1. c l,) opprovea blmself an Impartial akeptk: ^am M>ufm rpnm 

mentvt. Caaaiodorhia (la Chron.) and Ennodiua (p^ 1004,) are rdval and credutona, and tbe teatlmony of 



tbe Valeilan fragment (p. 718), muet Juatify their beliaf. HareelUnM ipiia tbe venom of a Greek eul^eet 
— perjurib lllectua, inlerteetuMueeet (in Chron.) 

(SS) The aooonMiB and aerTUe oration of Ennodtaa waa pronounced at Milan or Xavenna. In the year 
507 or 508 (Sinnond, torn. 1. p. 1615). Two or three year* aAerward, tbe orator waa rewarded with tlit 
Maboprte of Hvla, wblcb he beM tHl hie deMh in tbe year SSI. (Dupln. BibHoC Eeciea. lom. Y. d. 11— 
14. BeeSaxli Onomaadcon, torn. U. p. 19r» 



OF TU£ ROMAN £MPIKE. 7 

clo«ded,t]i« Tirhies of Theodoric.(34) One record of his fame, the Tolume of 
public epistles composed bj Cassiodorius in the rojal name, is still extant, and 
nas obtained more implicit credit than it seems to deserve. (^25) They exhibit 
the forms, rather than the substance^ of his government ; and we should vainly 
search for die pure and spontaneous sentiments of the Barbarian amidst tlie 
declamation and leamii^ of a sophist, the wishes of a Roman senator, the pre- 
cedents of office, and the vague professions, which, in every court and on eveiy 
occasion, compose the language of discreet ministers. The reputation of 
Theodoric may repose with more confidence on the visible peace and pros- 
perity of a reign of thirty 4hree years ; the unanimous esteem of his own times^ 
and tne memory of his wisdom and courage, his justice and humanity, which 
was deeply impressed on the minds of the Goths and Italians. 

The partition of the lands of Italy, of which Theodoric a5si^;ned the third 
part to his soldiers, is honourably arramed as the sole irmistice of his life. 
And even this act maybe fairly justified by the example of Odoacer, the f%hts 
of conquest, the true interest of the Italians, and the sacred duty of Subsisting 
a whole people, who, on the faith of his promises, had transported themselves 
into a distant land.(26) Under the rei^ of Theodoric, and in the happy 
climate of Italy, the Goths soon multiplied to a formidable host of two hun- 
dred thousand men,(37) and the whole anaount of their families may be com- 
puted by the ordinaiy addition of women and children. Their invasion of 
property, a part of which must have been already vacant, was disguised by 
the generous but hnproper name of hotpUality; these unwelcome guests were 
irregularly dispersed over the face of Italy, and the lot of each Barbari^ was 
adequate to his birth and office, the number of his followers, and the rustic 
wealth which he possessed in slaves and cattle. The distinctions of noble and 
plebeian were acknowledged ; (28) but the lands of every freeman were 
exempt from taxes,tand be enjoyed the inestimable privilege of being subject 
only to the laws of his country. (29) Fashion, and even convenience, soon per> 
suaded the conquerors to assume the nu)re elegant dress of the natives, bu* 
they still persisted in the use of their nrother-tono^ue ; and their contempt fo« 
the Latin schools was applauded by Theodoric himself, who gratified their 
prejudices, or his own, by declaring, that the child who had trembled at a rod, 
would never dare to look upon a sword.(30) Distress might sometimes pro- 
voke the indigent Roman to assume the ferocious manners which were 
insensibly relinciuished by the rich and luxurious Barbarian ;(31) but these 
mutual conversions were not encouraged by the policy of a monarch who per- ^ 
petuated the separation of the Italians and Goths ; reserving the former for the ' 
arts of peace, and the latter for the service of war. To accomplish this design, 
he studied to protect his industrious subjects, and to moderate the violence 
without enervating the valour of his soldiers, who were maintained for the 

CM) Dm' beat m«lMlali are oeeaaioail Moti from Prooopluf and the Valeilan Fragmeat, wlUcb waa 
diaooveied by Simond, and ia pabUibed at the end of Amioianua MareelUnaa. The aallior*8 name le 
anJcnown, and hia atyle is barbarous; but In bis varions facts he athibiia the knowledfe, without the pas- 
akiaa. of a oonteraporary. The president Montesquieu had fbrmed the plan of a history of Theodorie, 
which at a distance might appear a rich and InterasUng subject 

(95) The best edition of the Fmnanm Likri ztl. b Uiat of Job.Oanatiua (Rotomagi.lSm, In Oap. 
Caaaiodor. S vols. Ibl.) but they deserved and required such an editor aa the Marquis Scipio MaM, 
who thought of publishing them at Veroaa. TIm Barhara EUganza (as U Is lagaakNisly named by 
Tiraboechi) la never slmptey and seldom perspieuona 

(S6) Procopius, Gothic. L 1. e. 1. Variarnm U. Maflbl (Verona Iliuatrata, p. I. p 9S8,) exaggerated 
the injustice of the Goths, whom he hated as an Ttaliaa noble. The plebeian Muratorl crouches under 

fhnir op p uM W l i gn. 

(97) Arueoplns, Goth. L W. c 4. SL Banodius dmrifaes (p. 1619, MIS,) the mtUtary aitiaad Inereartiig 
numbers of the Gotfaa. 

(98) Wlien Theodorie nve Ma riaier to tha ktaig of the Vandals, she sailed for AfHca with a guard of 
jseo noble Goths, each of whom was attended by Ave armed Mlowen (Pracopw VandaL 1. L e. 8). Tha 
Gothle^noblUty must have been as numerous as brave. 

(W) Bee the aeknowledgmeat of Godilc liberty, Var. ▼. 30. 

(30) PitMoplua, OoUi. 1. L e. 9. The Roman boys learned tbelanguage (Var. vilt. 91,) of tha Goclw. 
Their feoeral ignoraaea Is not deatioyed by the exceptions of Amalasuntba, a i^male, who might stnir 
without shame, or of Theodatns, whose learning provoked the indlgnatloa and eoatempt of Ui 

unded on experience : ** Romaaus miser imitatnr i 
See the Fragment and Notes of Valeslua, p. 719. 



0UI) 'a saying of Theodoric was fbonded on experience : ** Romaaus miser imitatnr Gothua ; et i 
Cdtaw)GoitaMtaiiiiiisnrr - - -. - 



e THE DECLINE AND FALL 

pubhc defence. They held their lands and benefices as a militanr stipeod ; aC 
the sound of the trumpet they were prepared to inarch under the conduct of 
^ir provincial officers ; and the whole extent of Italy was distributed into the 
several (quarters of a well-regulated camp. The service of the palace and of 
the frontiers was performed by choice or by rotation : and each extraordinaiy 
fatigue was recompNensed by an increase of pay and occasional donatives, 
Theodoric had convinced his brave companions, that empire must b^ accjuired 
and defended by the same arts. After his example, they strove to excel m the 
use not only of the lance and sword, the instruments of their victories, but of 
the missile weapons, which they were too much inclined to neglect ; and the 
lively image of war was displayed in the daily exercise and annual reviews of 
the Gothic cavalry. A firm though gentle cfiscipline imposed the habits of 
modesty, obedience, and temperance ; and the Goths were instructed to spare 
the peoi>le, to reverence the laws, to understand the duties of civil society, and 
t-i disclaim the barbarous license of judicial combat and private revenge.(32) 
Among the Barbarians of the West, the victory of Theodoric had spread a 
general alarm. But as soon as it appeared that he was satisfied with conquest 
and desirous of peace, terror was changed into respect, and they submitted to 
a powerful mediation, which was uniformljr employed for the best purposes of 
reconcilipg their quarrels and civilizing their manners. (33) The ambassadors 
who resorted to Kavenna from the most distant countries of Europe, admired 
his wisdom, magnificence,(34) and courtesy; and if he sometimes accepted 
either slaves or arms, white horses or strange animals, the gift of a sun-dial, a 
water-clock, or a musician, admonished even the princes ofGaul, of the supe* 
rJor art and industi^ of his Italian subjects. His domestic aIlianGes,(^35) a wife, 
two daughters, a sister, and a niece, united the family of Theodoric with the 
kingi ofthe Franks, the Buigundians, the Visigoths, the Vandals, and the Thu- 
ringians ; and contributed to maintain the harmony, or at least the balance, of 
tlie great republic of the West. (36) It is difficult in the dark forests of Ger- 
njany and roland to pursue the emigrations of the Heruli, a fierce people who 
disdained the use of armour, and who condemned their widows and aeed 
parents not to survive the loss of their husbands, or the deca^ of their 
strength.^37) The king of these savage warriors solicited the friendship of 
The^onc, and was elevated to the ramc of his son, according to the barbaric 
rUes of a military adoption.(38) From the shores of the Baltic, the iEUtians 
or Livonians laid their offerings of native amber(39) at the feet of a prince 
whose fame had excited them to undertake an unknown and dangerous journey 
of fifteen hundred miles. With the country (40) from whence the Gothic nation 
derived their origin, he maintained a frequent and firiendly correspondence ; 

(32) The view of Ui« mlHury eaulillthmeiit of the Goths In Italy, to collected fKim the Eptotlee of Cm- 
■kxioriiu (Var. I. 84. 40, 111. i S4. 48, iv. 13, 14, v. 98, S7, vlll. 3, 4. 25). They are iUustraled 6y Uie 
learned Maacou (Hlat. of the Gennane. 1. zL 40—44. Annotation xtv.)* 

(33} See theclearaeai and vigour of hto negotiaUona In Ennodiue (p. 1607). and Cacdodoriiu (Var. lU. 
it S. 3, 4. W. is. V. 43, 44), who glvee the different itylea of frlendahip, eooneel, cxpoetulatlon, 4te. 

CM) Eiren of his table (Var. vi. 0,) and palaee (tU. 5). The admiration of strangers to represraled aa 
die moat rational motives to justify these vain ezpenaes, and to stimulate the diligence of the ollicen to 
whom those provinces were fntruMed. 

(35) Seethe puMle and private alliances ofthe Gothic mooaich, with the Burgundlaas (Var. L 45, 48), 
whh Uie Franks (ii.40), wiUi the Tburingtouis (iv. 1), and with Uie Vandato (v. 1). Each of Uiesa 
epistles aflbrds some curious knowledge of the policy and manners of the Barbarians. 
"OlS) Hto political system may be observed in Casslodorlus (Var. iv. 1, Ix. 1), Jomandes (c 58, p.S88, 
€00), and the Valeklan Fragment (p. 790, 791>b Peace, honoorable peace, was the constant afan of 
Theodorie. 

(37) The curious reader may contemplate the Heruli of Procoplos (Goth. 1. 11. c. 14), and the patient 
reader may plunge into the dark and minute researches of M. de Buat (Hist, des Peuples Anciens, torn. Ij;. 
p. S4B--306).t 

fX) Vanarum. Iv. 8. IIm spirit and forms of thto martial InstltutJon are noticed by Casslodorlus ; 
h>4 he seems only to have tranelaied the sentiments of the Gothic king into the language of Roman 



ifeqnc 

(30) Caariodorius, who quotes Tacttus to the jBsiians, the unlettered savages of the Baltic (Var. v. 2) 
deacrlbea the amber for which their shores have ever been famous, as the gum of a tree, hardened by the 
son, and purifled and waAed by the waves. When that singular substance to analyzed by the cbymist^ 
it yields a vsgetabte oU and a mineral acid. 

(40) Scania, or Thule, to described by Jomandes (c. 3. p. 610—813,) and Proooplns (Goth. I. iL c. }5X 
JMther the Goth nor the Greek had visited the country : both had conversed with the natives in tbeii 
•xiles at Ravenna or Coostantinopte. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. # 

ihe Italians were clothed in the rich 8ables(4l) of Sweden; and one of its 
soTereififns, after a Toluntaiy or reluctant abdication, found a hospitable retreat 
in the palace of Ravenna. He had reigned over one of the thirteen populous 
tnbes who cultivated a small portion oAhemat island or peninsula of Scan* 
dinavia, to which the vag^ue appellation of Tnule has been sometimes applied. 
That northern reeion was peopled, or bad been explored, as hi|^b as the sixty* 
eighth degree of tatitude, where the natives of the polar circle enjoy and lose the 
presence of the sun at each summer and winter solstice during an equal period 
of forty days.(42) The long niffht of his absence or death was the mournful 
season of distress and anxiety, till the messen^is who had been sent to the 
mountain tops, descried the first rays of returning light, and proclaimed to the 
plain bebw the festival of his resurrection. (43) 

The life of Theodoric represents the rare and meritorious example of a Bar- 
barian, who sheathed his sword in the pride of victory and the vigour of his 
age. A reign of three-and-thirty years was consecrated to the duties of civil 
government, and the hostilities m which he was sometimes involved, were 
speedily terminated by the conduct of his lieutenants, the discipline of his 
troops, the arms of his allies, and even by the tenor of his name. He reduced, 
under a strone and regular government, the unprofitable countries of Rhstia, 
Noricum, DaJmatia, and Pannonia, from \he source of the Danube and the 
territory of the Bavarians,(44) to the petty kingdom erected by the Gepids on 
the ruins of Sirmium. His prudence could not safely intrust the bulwark of 
Italy to such feeble and turbulent neighbours ; and his justice might claim the 
lands which they oppressed, either as a part of his kingdom, or as the inherit- 
ance of his father. The greatness of a servant who was named perfidious 
because he was successful, awakened the jealousy of the emperor Anastasius ; 
and a war was kindled on the Dacian frontier, by the protection which the 
Gothic king, in the vicissitude of human affairs, nad granted to pne of the 
descendants of Attila. Sabinian, a general illustrious by his own and his 
father's merit, advanced at the head of ten thousand Romans ; and the pro- 
visions and arms, which filled a long train of wa^;ons, were distributed to the 
fiercest of the Bulgarian tribes. But, in the &lds of Maigus, the eastern 
powers were defeated by the inferior forces of the Goths and Huns ; the 
flower and even the hope of the Roman armies was irretrievably destroyed : 
and such was the temperance with which Theodoric had inspired his victorious 
troops, that as their leader had not given the signal of pillage, the rich spoils 
of tne enemy lay untouched at their feet (45) Exasperated by this disgrace, 
the Byzantine court despatched two hundred ships and eight thousand men to 
plunder the sea-coast of Calabria and Apulia j they assaulted the ancient city 
of Tarentum, interrupted the trade ana agriculture of a happy country, and 
sailed back to the Hellespont, proud of tMir piratical victory over a people 
whom they still presumea to consider as their Eoman brethren.(46) Their 

(41) S4tpkeri*M fdUa. In the time of Jornandet, they Inhebited SuetkamMt the poper Sweden ; but 
tfnt beaatiful race of animala has graduaUjr been driven into Uie eMiern parte of Siberia. See Buflbn 
miflt. Nat torn. zili. p. 300—313, quarto ediUon) ; Pennant (System of Quadrupeds, voL L p 339— 328) ; 
Gmelin (Hist Gen. des Voyacee, torn. zviiU p. SS7, 858) ; and Levteiue (Hist de Ruesie, torn. v. p. l(a, 
JM. 514, 515). 

(48) In the syitom or romance of M. BalUy (Letters sur les Sciences et sor 1* Atlantide, torn. I. p. S4S 
*-8Sa, tom. IL p. 114—139), the pbonlx of the Edda, and the annual death and revival of Adonb and 
Oslrta. are the allegorical symbols of the abssnce and return of the sun In the arctic regions. The 
faffBni(DQB writer Is a worthy diadpleof the great Builba: nor is it easy for the ooldesi reason to withstand 
Ihe magic of their phUaeophy. 

(43) Avnr r« evAiTai; 9 |««y«S»» t»k csprwv sri, says Proeoplus. Al present a rnde Manicbevm 
Cgenerous enouab) prevails among the Bamoyedes In Greenland and in Lapland (Hist des Voyages, lom. 
sviii. p 508, 509, tom. zix. p. 105, 106. 337, 538) ; yet, according to Grotius, Samoluttt calum atque astrc 
•dorant, numina baud aliis ininuiora (de Rebus JBelgids, L Iv. p. 338, Ibllo edlUoa) ; a sentence which 
Tacitus would not have disownea. 

(44) See the Hist des Peuples Anciens, Jte. tom. iz. p. 355—973. 396— 50L The count de Buat wai 
neneh minisier at the court of Bavaria: a liberal curiosity prompted his inquiries into the andqultiei of 
the eountrv, and that eurio^ was the gtrm of twelve respectable volumes. 

(45) See the Gothic transactions on the Danube and in Illyricuro, in Jomandes(c. 58, p. 0D9), Ennodlttt 
(p. 1607— 1610), Mareeinnos (In Chron. p. 44. 47, 48), and Caasiodorlus (In Chron. and Var. lU. S3. 50, 
|y. 13,tU. 4. 94, viii. 9, 10, 11. SI, iz. 6, 9). 

(HO) I caonDt forbeai traasalbing the liberal and claadc style of Count Harcdttnoi: 



10 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

retreat was possibly hastened by the activity of Theodoric ; Italy was cohered 
by a fleet of a thousand light vessels,(47) which he constructed with incredible 
despatch ; and his firm iiKKleration was soon rewarded by a solid and honour* 
able peace. He maintained with a powerful hand the "balance of the West, 
till it was at length overthrown by the ambition of Clovis ; and although unable 
to assist his rash and unfortunate kinsman the kine of the Visi^ths, be saved 
the remains of his family and people, and checked the Franks m the midst of 
their victorious career. I am not desirous to prolong or repeat(48) this narra* 
tive of military events* the least interesting of the reign of Theodoric ; and 
shall be content to add, that the Alemanni were protected,(49) that an inroad 
of the Buigundians was severely chastised, and that tbe conquest of Aries and 
Marseilles opened a free communication with the Visigoths, who revered him 
both as their national protector, and as the guardian of his grandchild, tbe 
infant son of Alaric. Under this respectable character, the king of Italy 
restored the proetorian prefecture of the Gauls, reformed some abuses in tfcie 
civil government of Spain, and accepted the annual tribute and apparent sub- 
mission of its militaiy eovemor, who wisely refused to trust his person in the 
palace of Ravenna.(50j The Gothic sovereignty was establishea from Sicily 
to the Danube, from Sirmium or Belgrade to the Atlantic Ocean ; and the 
Greeks themselves have acknowledgea that Theodoric reigned over the fairest 
portion of the Western empire.(5l) 

The union of the Goths and Romans might have fixed for ages the transient 
happiness of Italy ; and the first of nations, a new people of (ree subjects and 
enlightened soldiers, might have gradually arisen from the mutual emulation of 
their respective virtues. But the sublime" merit of ffuiding or secondii^ such a 
revolution, was not reserved for the reign of Theodoric ; he wanted either tbe 
(i;enius or the opportunities of a legislator j(52) and while be indulged the Goths 
m the enjoyment of rude liberty, he servjlely copied the institutions, and even 
the abuses, of the political system which had been framed by Constantine and 
his successors. From a tender r^pard to the expiring prejudices of Rome, the 
Barbarian declined the name, tbe purple, and the diadem of the emperors ; t>ut 
he assumed, under tbe hereditary title of king, the whole substance and plenir 
tude of imperial prerogative.(53) His addresses to the eastern throne were 
respectful and ambiguous : be celebrated in pompous style the harmony of the 
two republics, applauded nis own government as the perfect similitude of a sole 
and undivided empire, and claimed above the kings of the earth the same pre- 
eminence which be modestly allowed to tbe person or rank of Anastasius. The 
alliance of the East and West was annually declared by tbe unanimous choice 
of two coiisub : but it should seem, that the Italian candidate who was named 
by Theodoric, accepted a formal confirmation from the sovereign of Constan- 
tJDopIe.(64) The Gothic palace of Ravenna reflected tbe image of the court 
of Tbeodosius or Valentinian. The praetorian prefect, the prefect of Rome, 



4omeKlcoram, et Ruiticut ooiaei icholuloram cam centum armatii navibus, totldemqiie dromonlbui, 
odo mlllla mlUuim annatoram tecttin ftrentibut, ad devaitanda Italle littora prooenarunt, et aique 
ad Tarentam antiqulHimam civltatem nggnml mat; remenKiqae mari inh<Ni«eiain victoriam qaan 
plratlco aiua Somaoi ei Romanis rapoentnt, Anasiatto CKsan reportaront (in Chroa. p. 48). See 



Variar. 1. 16, 11. 38. 

(47) See the roval orden and Inrtracttone (Var. ir. 15) v. IS-fiO). TheM armed boats iliottld be fdU 
imatler than the thoaund veaieli of Agamemnon at tiie ilece of Troy. 

(48) Vol. ItL 41S— 118. ^ 

(40) EnnodluB (p. 1910,) and Canlodoriue, In the royal name (Var. IL 41), record hie salutary pfolectkMi 
of the Alemanni. 

(50) The Gothic transactions in Gaul and Spain are represented with some perplezlty In Cairiedorlas 
(Var. Hi. as. 38. 41. 43, 44, ▼. 39), Jomandes (c. 58, p. 008, OBO), and Proeopius (GoMk, I. i. c 19). I will 
Beitber hear nor reconcile the long and contradiet<Mry arguments of tbe Abb^ Duboe and the Count de 
Buat, about the wan of Burgundy. (51) Theopbannes, p. 113l 

153) Proeopius afflrms that no laws whatsoerer weie promulgated by Theodorie and the suoeoedbif 
kings of Italy (Gotb. 11. c. 6). He must mean In tbe Gothic language. A LaUn ediot of Theodorie Is sdfi 
eitant, in one hundred and flfty-fonr artklea* 

(53) The image of Theodoric is engraved on his eoins-^is modest sueeesson were satlsAed with adding 
their own name to Uie head of tbe reigning emperor (Muratorl Antlquitat Italls Medll JSti, torn. U. dim- 
mm. xivIL p. 577—570. Glannone letorta Civile di Napoll, torn. i. p. 100). 

(54) The aUianee of the emperor and tbe king of luiy, ars rapresented by Cesslodorius (Var. 1. 1, il. L 
1, 9^ vLl), and Proeopius (GoUkLli c.6.1.iUc Uv who celebrate Uie Meodship of AnaMaiAiis aM 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRfc. U 

the qusstor, the master of the offices, with the public and patrimonial treasures, 
whose functions are painted in gaudy colours oy the rhetoric of Cassiodoriua. 
still continued to act as the ministers of state. And the subordinate care cI 
justice and the revenue was delegated to seven consulars, three correctors, and 
iLve presidents, who governed the fifteen regions of Italy, according to the prin- 
ciples and even the forms of Roman jurisprudence. (55) The vfoience ot the 
conquerors was abated or eluded by the slow artifice of judicial proceedings ; 
the civil administration, with its honours and emoluments^ was confined to the 
Italians ; and the people still preserved their dress and larmiage, their laws and 
customs, their personal freedom, and two-thirds of their hnded property.^ It 
had been the object of Augustus to conceal the introduction of monarcbr ; it 
was the policy of Tbeodoric to disguise the reign of a fiarbarian.(56) If his 
subjects were sometimes awakened from this pleasing vision of a Roman 

S>vemment, they derived more substantial comfort from the character of a 
othic prince, who had penetration to discern, and firmness to pursue, his own 
and the public interest. Tbeodoric loved the virtues which he possessed, and 
the talents of which he was destitute. Liberius was promoted to the office of 

5r8etorian prefect for his unshaken fidelity to the unfortunate cause of Odoacer. 
^he ministers of Tbeodoric, Cassiodorius(57^ and Boethius, have reflected on 
his reign the lustre of their genius and learning. More prudent or more for- 
tunate than his coUeague, Uassiodorius preserved his own esteem without 
forfeiting the royal favour ; and after passing thirty years in the honours of the 
world, he was blessed with an equal term of repose in the devout and studious 
solitude of Squillace.* 

As the patron of the republic, it was the interest and duty of the Gothic king 
to cultivate the affections of the 8enate(58) and people. The nobles of Rome 
were flattered by sonorous epithets and formal professions of respect, which 
had been more justly applied to the merit and authority of their ancestors. 
The people enjoyed, without fear or danger, the three blessings of a capital, 
order, plenty, and public amusements. A visible diminution of their numbers 
maj be found even in the measure of liberality ;(59) yet Apulia, Calabria, and 
Sicily, poured their tribute of com into the granaries of Kome ; an allowance 
of bread and meat was distributed to the indigent citizens ;• and evenr office 
was deemed honourable which was consecrated to the care of their health and 
happiness. The public games, such as a Greek ambassador might politely 
applaud, exhibited a faint and feeble copy of the magnificence of the Cesars : 
yet the musical, the gymnastic, and the pantomime arts, had not totally sunk in 
oblivion; the wild beasts of Africa still exercised in the amphitheatre the 
courage and dexterity of the hunters ; and the indulgent Goth either patiently 
tolerated or gently restrained the blue and green factions, whose contests so often, 
filled the circus with clamour, and even with blood.(60) In the seventh year 

Tbeodork: but tbe flgunUvfl style of eompUment was interpreted in a Tery different sense at Constanti 
Lople and Ravenna. 

(95) To the xvii provinces of tbe NoUtla, Paul Warnefridi the deacon (De Reb. Longobaid. 1. ti. c. 14— 
99), has subjoined an xvlilth, Uie Apennine (Muratori Script. Rerum Italicarum. torn. i.p. 431—^. Bat 
ofuiese Sardinia and Corsica were possessed by the Vandals, and the two Rhetias,a8 well as the Cotliaa 
Alps, seem to liave been abandoned to a military government. The state of the four provinces that now 
ftuia tlie ktngdomjof Naples, is laboured by Glannone (lom. I. p. ITS. 178,) with patriotic diligence. 

(56] -See the Gothic histniv of Procopios (1. i. c. 1, 1. ti. c. 6), tbe Epistles of Casslodorus (pasilm, bol 
flsnectally tbe fifth and sixth books, which contain the formulm. or patents of offices), and Ute CivH 
Bttiorv of Giannone (torn. 1. 1. ii. iii.) The Gothic counts, which he places In every Italian city, are 
annihilated, however, by Maffei, (Verona Illustrata, p. i. L vili. p. 297); for those of Syracuse and Maples 
rVar. vi. 33, 83,) were special and temporary comnUssiona. 

(57) Two Itsiuans of the name of Cassiodorius, the father (Var. i. 34. 40,) and the son (Iz. M, SS), were 
successively employed in the administration of Tbeodoric. The son was born in tlie year 479 : his various 
epistles as qucstor, master of the offices, and prniorlsn prefect, extend from 909 to 539, and ho lived as a 
monk about thirty yeara (Tlraboscbl Storia della Letteratura Italiana, torn. ii. p. 1—%L FabriciuBi 
Bibliot. Lat. Med. ^vi, torn. L p. 357, 358, edit. Mansi.) 

(SB) See his regard for the senate in Cocbkeus ( Vit. Theod. vUl. p. 79-^. 

(99) No more than 190,000 medti, or four thousand quarters (Anonym. Yalesian. p. TiL and Var. L 3Sk 
vL J8, xL 539). 

(BO) See his regard and Indulgence Ibr the speetaeles of the elreos, the amphitheatre, and tbe tbeatnk 
Id tbe Chronicle and Epistles of Cassiodorius (Var. i. 90. S7. 30, 3K 33, Hi. 51, Iv. 51, Illustrated by thS 
sivib Annotatloa of Masooa^s History), who has contcived to sprinkle tbe sul^ect with oet>Bt>tti% 
ttmofh agreeabtoi learaioc. 



W THE DECLINE AND FALL 

of bis peaceful reign, Theodoric visited the old capital of the world ^ the senate 
and people advanced in solemn procession to salute a second Trajan, a new 
Valentinian : and he nobly supported that character by the assurance of a just 
and legal government,(61) in a discourse which he was not afraid to pronounce 
in public, and to inscribe on a tablet of brass. Rome, in this au^st ceremony, 
shot a last ray of declining glory ; and a saint, the spectator ot this pompous 
scene, could only hope in his pious fancy, that it was excelled by the celestial 
splendour of the New Jerusalem. (62) During a residence of six months, the 
fame, the person, and the courteous demeanour of the Gothic king excited the 
admiration of the Romans, and he contemplated, with equal curiosit;^ and sur- 
prise, the monuments that remained of their ancient greatness. He imprinted 
the footsteps of a conqueror on the Capitoline hill, and frankly confessed that 
each day he viewed with fresh wonder the forum of Trajan and his lofty 
column. The theatre of Pompey appeared, even in its decay, as a huge 
mountain artificially hollowed and polished, and adorned by human industry ; 
and he vaguely computed, that a river of (cold must have been drained to erect 
the colossal amphitheatre of Titus.(63) From the mouths of fourteen aque- 
ducts, a pure and copious stream was diffused into every part of the city ; 
among these the Claudian water, which arose at the distance of thirty-eight 
miles in the Sabine mountains, was conveved along a gentle though constant 
declivity of solid arches, till it descendea on the summit of the Aventine hill. 
The long and spacious vaults which had been constructed for the purpose of 
common sewers, subsisted, after twelve centuries, in their pristine strength: 
and the subterranean channels have been preferred to all the visible wonders of 
Rorae.(64) The Gothic kings, so injuriously accused of the ruin of antiquity, 
were anxious to preserve the monuments of the nation whom they had suB- 
dued.(65) The royal edicts were framed to prevent the abuses, the neglect, 
or the depredations of the citizens themselves ; and a professed architect, the 
annual sum of two hundred pounds of gold, twenty-five thousand tiles, and the 
receipt of customs from the Lucrine port, were assigned for the ordinary repairs 
of the walls and public edifices. A similar care was extended to the statues 
of metal or marble of men or animab. The spirit of the horses, which have 
given a modern name to the C^irinal, was applauded by the Barbarians ;(66) 
the brazen elephants of the Vta scLcra were ailigently restored ;(67) the famous 
heifer of Myron deceived the cattle, as they were driven through the forum of 
Peace ;(68) and an officer was created to protect those works of art, which 
Theodoric considered as the noblest ornament of his kingdom. 

After the example of the last emperors, Theodoric preferred the residence 
of Ravenna, where he cultivated an orchard with his own hands.(69) As often 
as the peace of his kingrdom was threatened (for it was never invadfed) by the 
Barbarians, he removed his court to Verona(70) on the northern frontier, and 

<61) Anonym, yales. p. 72t. Mnrios Avenilccnsia la Chron. In the icale of public and poreonil 
merit, die GoUiic Conqueror is at least as much abooe Valentinian, aa he may teem inferior to 



cell 



Vlt Fulgentii In Baron. AnnaL Ecclea, A.D. 500, No.ia 



[03) Caasiodorius describes in his pompous style the forum of Tn^an (Var. vU. 6), the theatre of Mar- 
llua (iv. 51), and the amphitheatre or Tiius (v. 43) ; and his descrlpUona are not unworthy of the 
reader^s perusal. According to the modem prices, the Abb^ Barthelemy computes thai the brick-work 
and masonry of the Coliseum would now cost twenty millions of French llvres (Mem. de rAcadeinie dea 
Inacrlptloos, torn, xxvlil. p. 585, 586). How small a part of that stupendous i^ibric ! 

(64) For the aqueducts and cloaca, see Strabo (I. r. p. 360), Pliny (Hist. Nat. zzzvl. 34), CasBiodorlua 
(Var. ill. 30, 31, vi. 6), Procopius (Goth. 1. 1. c. 19,) and Nardinl (Roma AnUca, p. 514—522). How such 
works could be executed by n king of Rome, Is yet a problem.* 

(65) For the Gothic care of the buildinp and statues, see Casslodorius (Var. i. 21. 39i U« 34, Iv. 30, vti. 
flwlS. 15,) and the Valesian Fragment (p. ^31). 

(06) Var. vll. 15. These horses <^ Monte-Cavatio had been transported from Alexandria to the baths 
of Constantino (Nardinl, p. 188). Their sculpture is disdained bv ibe Abb^ Dubos (Reflexions sur la 
Poesie et sur la Peinture, torn. I. section 36), and admired by Winckeh&an (Hist, de TArt, tom. IL 
p. 158). 

(jH) Var. X. 10. They were probably a fragment of aome triumphal car (Cuper de Elephan'.ts, ii. 10). 

(98) Procopius (Goth. I. iv. c. 31,) relates a foolish story of Mvron's cow, which is celebrated by th« 
Alae wit of thirty^x Greek epigrams (Anthotog. I. iv. p. 302-306, edit. Hen. Sieph. Auson. Epigram I. 
yvUL Ixvlii.) 

(60) See an epigram of Ennodius (11. 3, p. 1893, 1804,) on this aarden and the royal gardener 

Op) His aflbeUoa ibr that city is proved by Uie epithet of *' "^rona tuftj** and Uie legend of the hero; 



OP THE ROiMAN KMPIUK. a 

the Ima^ of his palace, still extant, on a com, represents the oldest and most 
authentic model of Gothic architecture. These tWo capitals, as well as PaFia, 
Spoleto, Naples, and the rest of the Italian cities, acquired under his reign the 
useful or splendid decorations of churches, aqueductsi baths, porticos, and 
palaces.(71) But the happiness of the subject was more truly conspicuous rn 
the busy scene of labour and luxury, in the rapid increase and bold enjoyment 
of national wealth. From the shades of 'nbar and Praeneste, the noman 
senators still retired in the winter season to the warm sun, and salubrious spnng^s 
of fiaiee ; and their villas, which advanced on solid moles into the bay of 
Naples, commanded the various prospect of the sky, the earth, and the water. 
On the eastern side of the Hadrlatic, a new Campania was formed in the fair 
and fruitful province of Istria, which communicated with the palace of Ravenna 
by an easy navigation of one hundred miles/ The rich productions of Lucania 
and the adjacent provinces were exchanged at the Marcilian fountain, in a popu- 
lous fair, annually dedicated to trade, intemperance, and superstition. In the 
solitude of Comum, which had once been animated by the mild genius oi 
Pliny, a trampareot basin above sixty miles in leif^th still reflected the rural 
seats which encompassed the mare^inof the Larianlake ; and the gradual ascent 
of the hills was covered by a triple plantation of olives, of vines, and of chesnut 
trees. (7S) Agriculture revived under the shadow of peace, and the number of 
husbandmen was^ multiplied by the redemption of capt]ves.(73) The iron 
mines of Dalmatia, a gold mine in Bruttium» were carefully explored, and the 
Pomptine marshes^ as well as those of Spoleto, were drained ana cultivated by 
private undertakers, whose distant reward must depend on the continuance ot 
the public prosperity.f 74) Whenever the seasons were less propitious, the 
douotful precautions of forming magazines of com, fixing the price, and pro- 
hibiting the exportation, attested at least the benevolence of the state; but 
such was the extraordinary plenty which an industrious people produced from 
a gnrateful soil, that a gallon of wine was sometimes sold in Italy for less than 
ihi^ee farthings, and a quarter of wheat at about five shillings and sixpence.(76^ 
A country possessed of so many valuable objects of exchange, soon attracted 
tlie merchants of the worid, whose beneficial traffic was encouraged and 
protected by the liberal spirit of Theodorio. The free intercourse of the pro- 
vinces by land and water was restored and extended; the city gates were never 
shut either by day or by nisht ; and the common saying, that a purse of ^old 
might be safely lett in the fields, was expressive of the conscious security ofthe 
inhabitants. 

A difference of religion is always pernicious, and oAen fatal, to the harmony 
of the prince and people ; the Grothic conqueror had been educated in the pro- 
fession of Arianism, and Italy was devoutly attached to the Nicene faith. But 
the persuasion of Theodoric was no. xiiected by zeal, and he piously adhered 
to the heresy of his fathers, without condescenaing to balance tne subtile argu- 
ments of theological metaphysics. Satisfied with the private toleration of his 
Arian sectaries, he justly conceived himself to be the guardian of the public 
worship, and his external reverence for a superstition which he despised, may 

■Oder tbe barbaroiu name of Deltileh of Bern (Pertngadold nd Cochloam, ^ 940), MafiU traces him witli 
knowledge and plen-iure in hie native country (1. ix. pJQO— 336). 

fl) Bee Maffel, Verona Illustrata, Part I. p. 331, 333. 306, &c Be imputes Gothic architecture, like 
Ibft eorrupUon of languago, writing, te doc to tbe Barttarians, bat to the Italians UiemseWec Compare 
his lenUments with those of Tlraboschi (torn. ill. p^ 61).* 

C73) Tbe villas, climate, and landscape of BaiK (Var. li. 6. Bee Cluver, Italia Antlq. 1. Iv. c 3, p. IJIO, 
Ase.), Istra (Var. zli. 33. 36), and Comum (Var. zi. 14, compare with Pliny's two villas, iz. 7), are agree- 
aMypainted in the Episties of OasBlodoriua. 

(73) In lii«ai1a numerosa agricolarum progenies (Ennodius, p. 1678. 1670, 1680). Bt.Eplphanius of 
Pavia redeemed by prayer or ransom 6000 cafKives from the Burgundians of byona and Savoy. Bneh 
deeds are the boat of mlraelet. 

(74) The political economyof Theodoric (see Anonym. Vales, p. 731, and Cassiodorius, in Chron.) mav 
be dletiactly traced under the following heads: Iron mine (Var. ill. 33) • gold mine (ix. 3); Pomptin« 
■anhes (li. », 33) ; Spolcuo (11. 31) : corn (i. 34, X. 37, 38, zi. 11, IS) . uade (vi. 7. 9. 33) ; fair of Leuco 
thoe or St. Cyprfam In Lucania (vili. 33) : plenty (xu. 4) ; the cursus, or public post (L SO, il. 31, Iv. 47, v. 
8| vL 6, vil. 33) ; the Flaminlan way (xlL 18). 

CS) LX modil trMel in solidum Ipsius tempoie fuerunt, et vinum xxx tfmphoras in solldum (Fragment 
Tales.) Oorn was distributed flroia thegraoariei at zvor zzv modllfor a piece of gold, and the price wm 



14 THE DECLINE AND PALL 

have dourished in his mind the safataiy indifference of a statefitnan ot phittK 
Bopher. The Catholics of bis dominions acknowledged, perhaps with relue* 
tance^ the peace of the church ; their cleiig^T) accordii^ to the degrees of rank 
or merit, were honourably entertained in (he palace of Theodoric ; he esteemed 
the living sanctity of C8esarius(76^ and £piphanius,(77) the orthodox bishops 
of Aries and Pavia : and presentea a decent offering on the tomb of St. Peter^ 
VFitbout any scrupulous hiquiiy into the creed of the apostle. (78) His favourite 
Goth^ and even bis mother> were permitted to retain or embrace the Athana- 
sian faith, and bis long reign could not afford the example of an Italian Catho- 
lic, who, either from choice or compulsion, had deviated into the religion of 
the conqueror* (79) The people, and the Barbarians themselves, were edified 
by the pomp and order of rehglous worship ; the magistrates were instructed 
to defend the iust immunities of ecclesiastical persons and ponessions ; the 
bishops held their synods, the metropolitans exercised their Jurisdiction, and 
the privileges of sanctuaiy were maintained or moderated according to the spirit 
of the Roman jurispru(lenoe.(80) With the protection, Theodonc assumed 
the lesal supremacy, of the church ; and his firm administration restored or 
extended some useful prerogatives which had been nec^ected by the feeble 
emperors of the West. He was not ignorant of the digmty and importance of 
the Roman pontifl^ to whom the venerable name of Pope was now appropri* 
ated. The peace or the revolt of Italy might depend on the character of a 
wealthy and popular bishop, who claimed such ample dominion both in hea- 
ven and earth ; who had been declared in a numerous synod to be pure from 
all sin, and exempt from all judgment (81) When the chair of St. Peter was 
disputed by Symmacbus and Laurence, they appeared at his summons before 
the tribunal o/ an Arian monarch, and be conbrmed the election of the most 
worthy or the most obsequious candidate. At the end of his life, in a moment 
of jealousy and resentment, he prevented the choice of the Romans, by nomi* 
nating a pope in the palace of Ravenna. The danger and furious contests of a 
schism were mildly restrained, and the last decree of the senate was enacted to 
extinguish, if it were possible, the scandalous venality of the papal elections. (82) 
I have descanted with pleasure on the fortunate condition of Italy; but our 
fancy must not hastily conceive that the golden age of the poets, a race of men 
without vice or miseiy, was realized under the Gothic conquest; The fair 
prospect was sometimes overcast with clouds; the wisdom of Theodoric 
might be deceived, his power mieht be resisted, and the declining age of the 
monarch was sullied with popular natred and patrician blood. In the first inso- 
lence of victory, he had been tempted to depnve the whole party of Odoacer of 
the civil and even the natural rights of society ;(83) a tax imseasonably imposed 
after the calamities of war. would have crushed the rising agriculture of Ligu- 
ria ; a rigid pre-emptioa bl com, which was intended lor the public relief, must 

(TB) 8« the Ufe of St CBsarios la Buonim (A. D. 806, No. IS, 13, 14). The kltig pmcoted hiin with 
aODjold Bolldl, and • dlaam of aUver of U»« weight of nxty poumto. 

(77) Enaodlas io Vlt St Eplpbanll, In Sinnond Op. tom. 1. p. KfTS— 1690. Theodoric bestowed eouie 
Important ftYouraoa this bishop whom be ueed •■ fc oooniellor hi peace and war. 

C78) Devotlarimae ac si Catboilcas (Annofm. Vales, p. 790) ; )rei his offerinc wbs no more than two 
diver candlesticlcs («sr«tlr«t«) of thfe weigbt of seventy pounds, ikr Inferior to the fold and feems of Om^ 
Biantinople and Fimnce (Anastasius hi Vtt Pont in Bormlsda, p. 34, edit Psris> 




•iweUftaofUiesiate.« . . . _ 

(80) We m&y leiect a (boUsh tale of his beheadtnK a Catholic dewxm who tamed Arian (Theodor. 

Lector. No. 17). W^ i% Theodoric sunamed A/ttt tnm Ft/trt (ValeS. ad hoc) A l^ht con- 

Jostoio. 

(61) Bnnodifu, p. 1031, lOSB. 16S6. 1636. Bis UM was approved and recistered (qraoMlter) bj a 

Soman toundl (llaronliu, A. D. 503. No. 6, Frandscus Pagl in Bteviar. Pont Rom. torn. L p. MS. 
(8t) See Csmlodorlus (Var. vlU. 15. Ix. 15, 10), Anastaslai (in Symmacbo, p. 31), and Uie ivUih Anna- 

tation of Mssooo. Banmius, Pagi, tjoA most of the OaUtoUc doctors, oonAss, with an angry growls this 

(83) He disabled them— a Ucentla taslandi; and all Italy moaraed->4ameiiiabiU josdtlo. I wish ta 
believe that Uicm penalties were enacied against the rebels, who had violated tiieir oath of allegiaaoe; 
btttthe tMUmoay ofEuMdhis (p. 1076-*'107§,) is the more welghty,as he Uvod and died vttAsr tha idgn 
of Theodoric* 



OP THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 15 

flive agmv»ted the distress of Campania. These dang^ermis pfo|ects were 
defeatea bj the virtue aod eloquence of Epiphanius and Boethius, who in the 
presence of Thepdoric himseu, successfully pleaded the cause of the peo- 
ple !(84) hot if the royal ear was open to the voice of truth, a saint and a philoso* 
pher are not always to be found at the ear of kinrs. The pririleges of ranki 
or office, or &Tour, were too freqaeotly abused by Italian fraud and Gothic 
Tiolence, and the avarice of the ktng^'s nephew was publicly exposed^ at first 
by the usdrpationt and afterward by the restitution of the estates which be 
had uiyustiy extorted from bis Tuscan neighbours. Two hundred thousand 
Barbarians, formidable even to their masten were seated in the heart of Italy ; 
they Indignantly supported the restraints of peace and discipline ; the disof 
ders of their march were always felt and sometimes compensated ; and where 
it was dangerous to punish, it might be prudent to dissemble^ the sallies of their 
native fierceness. When the indulgence of Theodoric had remitted two* 
thirds of the Ligurian tribute, he condescended to explain the difficulties of his 
situatkxi, and to lament the heavy though inevitable burdens which he imposed 
on his subjects for their own defence.(86) These ungrateful subjects could 
never be cordially reconciled to the origin, the religion, or even the virtues of 
the Gothic conqueror ; past calamities were foigotten, and the sense or suspicion 
of iqfuries was rendered still more exquisite by the present felicity of the times* 
Even the religknis toleration which TbeodoHc had the gloiy of introducing 
into the Christian world, was painful and offensive to the orthodox zeal of the 
Italians. They respected the armed heresy of the Goths ; but their pious rage 
was safely pointed against the rich and defenceless Jews, who had formed 
tlieir establishments at Naples^ Rome^ Ravenna, Milan, and Genoa, for the 
benefit of trade, and under the sanction of the Iaw8.(8e) Their persons were 
insulted, their efiects were pillaged, and their synagogues were burned by the 
mad populace of Ravenna and Ivome, inflamed, as it should seem, by the meet 
frivolous or extravagant pretences. The government which could neglect^ 
would have deservecL such an outrage. A legal inquiiy was instantly directed ; 
Bad as the authors otthe tumult haa escapea in the crowd, the whole commu- 
nity was condemned to repair the damage, and the obstinate bigots who 
rehised their contributions, were whipped rorough the streets by the band of 
tlie executioner/ This simple act of justice exasperated the discontent of the 
Catholics, who applauded the merit and patience of these ho\j confessors t 
three hundred pulpits deplored the persecution of the church, and if the chapel 
of St. Stephen at Verona was demolished by the command of Theodoric, it is 
probable tnat some miracle hostile to his name and dignity had been performed 
on that sacred theatre. At the close of a glorious fife, the kin^ of Italy dis- 
covered that he had excited the hatred of a people whose happiness be had so 
assiduously laboured to promote ; and his mind was soured by indignation, jea» 
lousy, ana the bitterness of unrequited love. The Gothic conaueror conde^ 
soended to disarm the unwarlike natives of Italy, interdicting all weapons of 
ofleoce, and exoeptine only a small knife for domestic use. The deliverer of 
Rome was accused of conspiring with the vilest informers against the lives of 
senators whom he suspected of a secret and treasonable correspondence with 
the Byzantine court.(a7) After the death of Anastaslus, the diadem had been 
placed on the head of a feeble old man ; but the powers of government were 
assumed by his nephew Justinian, who already meditated the extirpation of 
bere^, ana the conquest of Italy and Africa. A rigorous law which was pul> 
lished at Constantinople, to reduce the Arians by the dread of punishment 
within the pale of the churohi awalceoed the just resentment of Theodoric^ 

CM) Ennodlos, In yit. Eplphan. p. 1060, 1000. Boethlm de Conaolatlane Pbilotophis, L i. proa. It 
p. 45, 46, 47. Refptict, init weigh Um paaalona of tlM ialnt Mod the Mnstor ; BuA fortify or allevlkte UMir 
eomplaintt by tba various hints of Cassfddortw (IL 8, Iv. 30, vill. 5). 

(^ [mnuuitam expensarum pondoa. . . .pro Ipaoram salate, frc, yet these we no more than wofds. 

cm The Jews were settled at Naplna (Procopfua, Goth. 1. L e. 8), at Genoa ( Var. U. S8, iv. 33), MSaa 
(?. 37), Rome (iv. 43). See lltewtoe Baanage, Hist, dee JalA, torn. vlU. c. 7, p. 954. 

(87) Rex avMaa eommunis exttU, *e. (Boethlas, I. i. p. 50) ; rex doldm Romania tenebat (Anoafm, 
j^M^p. TP)l. Them $n bard words: tlwy ipeak Uie paastoos of Uie Italiana, tod ttaoae (I ftn) ef 



M -THE l>ECLifr£ AND ALL 

who claimed for his dntresaed brethreD of the East, the same indulgence vrbich 
he bad so long granted to the Catholics of his dominions.* At his stern com 
mandy the Roman pontiff, with (ourHUustrious senators, embarked on an em* 
bassy, of which he must have alike dreaded the faUure or the success. The 
sing^ular veneration shown to the fint pope who had visited Constantinople was 
punished as a crime by his iealous monarch ; the artful or peremptory refusal 
of the Bytantine court mient excuse an equal, and would provoke a larger, 
measure of retaliation ; and a mandate was pref)ared in Italy to prohibit, ^ter 
a stated day, the exercise of the Catholic worship. B^ the bicotry of his sub* 
jects and enemies, the most tolerant of princes was driven to tlie orink of per- 
secution t and the life of Theodoric was too long, since be lived to condemn the 
virtue of Boethius and Symmachus.(8e) 

The senator Boethius(89) is the last of the Romans whom Cato or Tully 
could have acknowledged for their countnrman. As a wealthy orohan, he 
inherited the patrinK)ny and honours of the Anician family, a name ambitiously 
assumed b^ the kings and emperors of the age ; and the appellation of Manlius 
asserted his eenuine or fabulous descent from a race of consuls and dictators) 
who had rejpulsed the Gauls from the Capitol, and sacrificed their sons to the 
discipline of the republic. In the youth of Cfoetbius, the studies of Rome were 
not totally abandoned ; a Viigil(90) is now extant, corrected by the band of a 
consul ; and the professors of grammar, metoric, and jurispnidencey were 
maintained in their privileges atid pensions, by tbe liberali^ of the Goths. 
But the erudition of the Latin language was insufficient to satiate hit 
ardent curiosity : and Boethius is said to have employed eighteen laborious 

J rears in the scbooIs of Athens,(91) which were supported by the zeal, the 
earning, and the dili^nce of Proclus and his disciples. The reasoh and piety 
of their Roman pupil were fortunately Saved from the contagion of mystery 
and magic, which polluted the nt>ves of the academy ; but oe imbibed the 
spirit, and imitated the method, ot his dead and living masters, who attempted 
to reconcile the strong and subtle sense of Aristotle with the devout contem* 
plation and sublime fancy of Plato. At)er his return to Rome, and bis mar 
riage with the daughter of his friend, the patrician Symmacfaiis, Boethius still 
continued, in a palace of ivory and marble, to prosecute the same studies.(9S) 
^ The church was edified by his profound defence of the orthodox creed against 
the Arian, the Cutychian, and the Nestorian heresies ; and tbe Catholic unity 
was explained or exposed in a formal treatise by the indifference of three dis* 
tinct though consubstantial persons. For the benefit of his Latin readers, bit 
renius submitted to teach the first elements of the arts and sciences of Greece 
The gcomeliy of Euclid, tbe music of Pythagoras, the arithmetic of Nicoma- 
chus, the mecbanics of Archimedes, the astronomy of Ptolemy, the theology 
of Plato, and the logic of Aristotle, with the commentair of Porphyry, were 
translated and illustrated by the indefatigable pen of the Koman senator. And 
hb alone was esteemed capable of describing tbe wonders of art, a sun-dial, a 
water-clock, or a sphere which represented the motions of the planets. From 

(86) I have laboured tu extract a ratioaal narrative from the dark, conciie, and varloui hints of tha 
Yaleflian Fragment Cp. ^ 7S3. TM), Ttieophanei (p. 145), Anaata«iuB (in Jobanne. p. 33,) and tbe Ble(< 
Mlflcolla. (p. 103, edit Mttrfttori.) A gentle preanire and paraphraw oftbeir words, v no violence. Cod 
Mlt Ukewiae Mumiori* (Annall d'ltalla, torn. iv. p. 471—478,) with the Annals and Breviary (torn. L 959 
^983), of ibe two Pagis, the uncle and tlie nepbew. 

(89) Le Clerc has composed a critical and philosophical Ufe of Anlcius Manlius Severinus Boethfaia 
(Blbllot Cholsie, torn. xvi. p. 168—975) ; and both Tiraboschi (torn. iU.)* ftnd Fabriclus (Bibliot. Latlo.i 
nay be usefully consulted. Tbe date of his birth may be placed about the year 470, and bis death in jf94, 
In a premature old age (Consol. PhiL Metrlca, 1. p. 5). 

(BO) For the age and value of this MS. now in the Medleeaa library at rtorencSf tee tbe.CenotapbIa 
Piaana (p. 430-447), of Cardinal Norls. 

(91) The AUienian studies of Boethius are doubtful (Baionlna. A. D. 510. No.X from a spurious tract, 
De Oisdplina Seholnn]m).and the term of eighteen years Is douotless ton long: but the simple fact of a 
▼tait to Athens, Is JustlAcd by much internal evidence (Brncker. Hist Crit. Phtloeoph. torn, tu p. 524-^ 
937), and by an expression (though vague and ambiguous) of his friend Cassiodorius (Var. i. 45.) " tonga 
pontttb Athenas, introtstl.** 

(99) Bibltothecc oomptos ebore ac vltrotpartelcs, Ibe (Conaol Phil. 1. 1. pros. ▼. p. 74). Tbe EpfsOes of 
Banodlus (vL 6, vii. 13, viH. 1. 31. 37. 40,) and Cnasindorius (Var. i. 39. iv. 6, Iz. 21,) aflbrd many proofb 
of tbe high reputation which he enio\ ed In liis own times, tt is true, that the bishop of Pavia wanted if 
purehasa of him an old house at Milan, sim) praise might be tendered tad accepted la part of payncat ^ 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. u 



Ihese abstruse sf>ecQlaticMis, Boethius stooped, or to speak more tnilyy he i 

to the social duties of public and private life : the indigent were relieved hf 
bis liberaKtj; and bis eloquence, which flattery miffbt compare to the voice ot' 
Demosthenes or Cicero, was uniformly exerted in 3ie cause of innocence and 
iiumanity. Such conroicuous merit was felt and rewarded by a diacemiiMr 
prince ; the dignity of Boethius was adorned with the titles of consul aaa 
patrician, and his talents were usefullj employed in the important station of 
master of the ofices. Notwithstanding the e(|ual claims of the East and Wes^ 
his two sons were created, in their tender jrouth, the consuls of the same 
year. (93) On the memorable day of their inauguration, they proceeded in 
solemn pomp from their palace to the Ibnim, amidst the applause of the senate 
and people ; and their joyful father, the true consul of Ronae, after pronouncii^ 
an oration in ike praise ch his royal benefactor, distributed a triumphal lamese 
in the games of the circus. Prospevoos in his fame and fortunes, in his puuic 
honours and private alliances, in the cultivation of science and the consciousness 
•of virtue, Boethius mirht have been styled happy, if that precarious epithet 
could be safely applied before the last term of the life of man. 

A p|hilosopber, lit>eral of his wealth and parsimonious of bis time, might be 
insensible to the cooHnon allurements of ambition, the thirst of jeold and en- 
plovment. And some credit may be due to the asseveration of Boethius, that 
ne bad reluctantly obeyed the divine Plato, who enjoins every virtuous citiceo 
to rescue the state from the usurpation of vice and ignorance. For the integrity 
of his public conduct he apoeals to the memoiy of his countiy. His authority 
had restrained the pride ana oppression of the roval officers, and his eloquence 
had delivered Paulianus from the dogs of the paiace. He had always pitied, 
and often relieved^ the distress of the provincials, whose fortunes were exhausted 
by public and private rapine ; and iBoethius alone had courage to oppose the 
tyranny of the Barbarians, elated by conquest, excited by avarice, and, as he 
complains, encouraged by impunity. In these honourable contests, bis spirit 
soared above the consideration of danger, and perhaps of prudence ; and we 
may learn ^m the example of Cato, that a character of pure and inflexible >/ 
virtae is the most apt to be misled by prehidice, to be heatkd l^ entbusiaam^ 
and to confound private enmities wifii public iustice. The disciple of Plato 
mif^hi exaggerate the infirmities of nature, ana the imperfections of society : 
•And the mildest form of a Gothic kingdom, even the weight of allegiance ana 
p^trtude, must be insupportable to tlM free spirit of a Roman patriot. But the 
favour and fidelity of Boethius declined in just proportion with the public hap- 
piness ; and an unworthy colleague was imposed, to divide and control the 
power of the master of the offices. In the last gloomy season of Theodoric, 
he indignantly felt that he was a slave ; but as his master had only power over 
his life, he stood without arms and without fear against the face of an angry 
Barbarian, who had been provoked to believe that the safety of the senate waa 
encompatible with his own. The senator Albinus was accused and aheady 
convicted on the presumption of hoping^ as it was said, the liberty of Rome. 
** If Albinus be criminal,'^ exclaimt 



, ^exclaimea the orator, ** the senate and myself are all 
gnuilty of the same crime. If we are innocent, Albinus is equally entitled to 
the protection of the laws.'^ These laws might not have punished the simple 
and barren wish of an unattainable blessings j but they would have shown less 
indulgence to the rash confeasion of Boethius, that bad he known of a con- 
spiracy, the tyrant never should.(94) The advocate of Albinus was soon 
involved in the daqger, and perhaps the guilt, of his client ; their si^ature 
fwhich they denied as a fomiy) was affixed to tbe original address, inviting 
the emperor to deliver Italy Trom the Goths ; and three witnesses of honourable 
rank, perhaps of infamous reputatkMi, attested the treasonable designs of the 

(!D3> Pagi, Maratorf, fte. are agreed tiiat Boetblns himself waa consul In the year 510, hi* two aooa la 
5B, aod in 487, perhafia, his fkther. A desire of ascribing the last of those consulships to the philosa- 
pber. had perplexed the chronology of his Ufa. In his honours, aUlancea, children, hecelebratfls Ms oWm 
ftOelty--his past Micity (p. m^VOh. 

(M) Siego scfsMoi ta nesdsses. Boethlos adopta Uib answer (1. i. pros. 4, p. 59,) of JFultai 09am 
'^rfaose philosnpbic death to desaibed by Seiieea (De TraaiitAltate AnISBl, e. 14^ 

Vol. III.— C 



18 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Reman patrician.(96) Yet his innocence must be preaimed, since he wafl^ 
deprived by Theodonc of the means of justification, and worously confined ia 
the tower of Pavia, while the senate, at the distance of five hundred miles, 
pronounced a sentence of confiscation and death against the most iJlustrious of 
its members. At the command of the Barbarians, the occult silence of a phi- 
losopher was stiraatized with the names of sacrilege and magic.(96) A 
devout and dutiful attachment to the senate was condenmed as criminal bj the 
trembling voices of the senators themselves ; and their ingratitude deserved the. 
wish or prediction of Boethius, that, after him, none should be found guilty of 
the same offence. (97) 

[A. D. 624.] While Boethiusy oppressed with fetters, expected each moment 
tlie sentence or the stroke of death, he composed in the tower of Pavia the 
Qnuolation of PkUoMophv; a ^Iden volume not unworthy of the leisure of 
Plato or Tully, but whicn claims incomparable merit from the barbarism of 

^ the times and the situation of the author. The celestial guide whom he bad 
so long invoked at Rome and Athens, now condescended to illumine hb dun- 

. geon, to revive his courage, and to pour into bis wounds her salutaiy balm* 
She taught him to compare his long prosperity and his recent distrea, and to 
conceive new hopes from the inconstancy of fortune. Reason had informed 
him of the precarious condition of her giQs ; experience had satisfied him of 
their real value ; he had enjoyed them without guilt ; be mijgbt resig;n them 
without a sigh, and calmly disdain the impotent malice of bis enemies, who 
had left him happiness, since they had left him virtue. From the earth, Boe- 

. thius ascended to heaven in searcn of the supreme good ; explored the meta- 
physical labyrinth of chance and destiny, of prescience and free-will, of time 
and eternity ; and generously attempted to reconcile the perfect attributes ot 

- the Deity, with the apparent disorders of his moral and physical government. 
Such topics of consolation, so obvious, so vague, or so abstruse, are ineffectual 
to subdue the feelings of human nature. Yet the sense of misfortune may be 
diverted by the labour of thought ; and the s^ge who could artfully combine 

' in the same work, the various riches of philosophy, poetry, and eloquence,, 
must already have possessed the intrepid calmness which he a£fected to seek. 
Suspense, the worst of evils, was at length determined by the mroisters of 
death, who executed, and perhaps exceeded, the inhuman mandateof Theodoric 
A strong cord was fastened round the head of Boethius, and forcibly tightened, 
till his eyes almost started from their sockets, and some mercy may be dis- 
covered in the milder torture of beating him with clubs till he expired.(98) 
But his genius survived to diffuse a ray of knowledge over the darkest ages ot 
the Latin world ; the writings of the philosopher were translated by the most 
glorious of the English kingB,(99) and the third emperor of the name of Otho 
removed to a more honourable tomb the bones of a Catholic saint, who from 
bis Arian perKcutors, had acquired the honours of martyrdom, and the fame of 
]nurade8.(l00) In the last hours of Boethius, he derived some comfort ftt>m 

(95) The chanclen of bis two delntore, BulUus (Vftr. ii. 10, 11, Iv. 92.) and OpiUo (v. 41, viti. 16), 
•16 iuuatrated, not much to their honour, in the EpisUes of Cftariodorius, which likewise mention Deco- 
ntus (v. 31), the worthleee colleague of Boethius (I. iii. pros. 4, p. 103). 

(90) A severe inqntay wss insUtuted into the crime of magic (yar. !▼. 98^ 93, Ix. 18} ; and it was 
believed that many necromancen had escaped by making their jailers mad: for wud^ I should read 
db'wiJk. 

(97) Boethins bad composed his own Apolocr (n. 53), peitepa more intercsUng than his Consolatkiik 
We most be conmt with the general view of his honours, principles, persecution, ^c (I. i. pros. iy. j>. 
4a— US), which may be compared with the short and weighty words of the Valeslan Fn^ment (p. ?9S)» 
An anonymous writer (Sinner, Catatog. M9S. BlbUou Bern. torn. 1. p. 907,) charges him home wttk 
liODonrable and patriotic treason. 

(96) He was executed in Agro Calventiano (Calvensano, between Marlgnano and Pavia), Anonym. 
Vales, p. 733, by order of Ensebius, count of Ticlnum or Pavia. The place of hb confinement is styled 
tiie 6a|»«wtsry, SB edifice and name peculiar to cathedrals. It Is claimed by the perpetual tradition of 
the church of Pavia. The tower of Boethius subsisted till the year 15B4, and the draught is yet preserved 
Cnraboschi, tom. ill. p. 47, 48). <-• r 

(99) See Um Blographica Britannica, ALraxn, torn. i. p. 80, 9d edldon. The work Is still more 
bonourable if performed under Uie learned eye of Alfred by bis foreign and domestic doctors. For the 
reputation of Boethius in the middle sges, consult Brucker (HisL CrlL Philosoph. torn. 111. p. 585, 586). 

(100) The taiscription on his new tomb was composed by the preceptor of Otho the Third, the leamei 
Pope 8UveBt«r IL who, like Boethius himsell^was styled a magtoan by the ignorance of the Umes. Tba 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. i^ 

die safety of bis two sons, of his wife, and of his fatber-in-law, tbe venerable 
Symmachus. But the grief of Symmacbua was indiscreet, and perhaps dis- 
iie8]>ectfui : be bad presumed to lament, be might dare to revenge, tbe death o(^ 
an injured friend. He was dragged in chains from Rome to the paiace of 
Ravenna ; and tbe suspicions of Tbeodoric could only be appeasea by tbe 
blood of an innocent and aged senator. (101) 

[A. D. 526.] Humanity will be disposed to encourage any report which 
testifies tbe jurisdiction of conscience and tbe remorse ot kings; and philosophy 
15 not ignorant that tbe most horrid spectres are sometimes created by the 
powers of a disordered fancy, and the weakness of a distenipered body. After 
a life of virtue and gloiy, Tbeodoric was now descending with shame and 
{^ilt into the grave : his mind was humbled by tbe contrast of the past, and 
justly alarmed by tbe invisible terrors of futurity. One evening, as it is related^ 
when tbe bead of a laree fish was served on the royal table,(l02) be suddenly 
exclaimed, that he beheld the angry countenance of Synnnachus, bis eyes glaring 
fury and revenge, and his mouth armed'with long sharp teeth, which threatened. 
to devour him. Tbe monarch instantly retired to bis chamber, and as he laVr 
trembling with anguish, cold under a weight of bed-clothes, be expressed m 
broken murmurs to his physician Elpidius, bis deep repentance for tbe murders 
of fioethius and Symmachus.(103^ His malady increased, and after a dysen- 
tery which continued three days, ne expired in tbe jpalace of Ravenna, m tbe 
thirty-third, or, if we compute from tbe invasion of italy, in the thirty-seventh 
year of bis reign. Conscious of his approaching end, be divided bis treasurer 
and provinces between bis two grandsons, and fixed tbe Rhone as their common- 
boundary .(104) Amalaric was restored to tbe throne of Spain. Italy, with 
all the conquests of tbe Ostrogoths, was bequeathed to Atbalaric, whose age 
did not exceed ten years, but who was cherished as the last male offspring of 
tbe line of Amali, by tbe short-lived marriage of his mother Amalasuntba, witb 
a loyaJ ft^ive of the same blood.(l06) In tbe presence of tbe dying monarchy 
tbe Gothic chiefs and Italian magistrates mutually engaged tiieir faith and 
loyalty to tbe young prince, and to bis guardian mother ; and received in tbe 
same awful moment, bis last salutary advice, to maintain the laws, to love tbe 
senate and people of Rome, and to cultivate with decent reverence tbe friend 
ship of tbe emperor.(l06) The monument of Tbeodoric was erected by bis 
daughter Amalasuntba, in a conspicuous situation, which commanded tbe city 
of Ravenna, tbe harbour, and the adjacent coast. A chapel of a circular form,., 
thirty feet in diameter, is crowned by a dome of one entire piece of granite : 
fipom tbe centre of the dome, four columns arose, which supported in a vase o^. 
porphyry, the remains of tbe Gothic king, surrounded by the brazen statues ot> 
the twelve apostles.(l07) His spirit, after some previous expiation, m^ht hav^ 

CaUMlie aartyr had carried bU head in hia handa a conaideraMe way (Baroniua, A. D. 598, No. 17, 18) ; 
yet, on a aimilar (ale, a lady of my acquaintance once obaerved, "La diatance n*y fait rien ; 11 n'y a qu«^ 
je premier naa qui coote.*'* 

(101) BoeUiiua applauda the vinaea of hla fatbei^in-Iaw (1. 1. proa. 4, d. 59, 1. ii. proa. 4, p J18). Pro- 
copiaa (GottL 1. i. c. 1), Uie Valcalan Fragment (p. 734), and the Hiatoria Miicelia. (1. zt. p. 106), agree la. 
praWng Uie aunerior innocence or aanctity of ^mmacbua; and inttae eatimatlon of the legend, Uie guilt 
of hia murder b equal to the tmpriaonment of a pope. ^ . 

(108) In the fancifVil eloquence of Caaaiodorioa, the variety of aea and riTer-flah ia an evidence of • 
eztcoaWe dominion ; and Uioae of Uie Rhine, of SicUy, and of the Danube, were aerved on the table of: 
Tbeodoric (Var. zii. 14). Tin monMioua tnrbot of Domitim (JuvenaL BaUr. 111. 39), had been caught ona 
the aborea of the Adriatic. 

(108) Proeoptoa, Goth. 1. 1. c 1. But he might have infotmed oa, whether he had reeeived that curious 
anecdote lh)m common report, or from the mouth at the royal phyffeian. 

004) Prooopiua, GoUi. 1. 1. e. 1, S. IS, 13. Thla partition had been directed hv Tbeodoric, Uiongh k 
waa not cMcuted tiU after hia death. Regni liereditatem auperitea leliquit (Lddor. Chron. p. TSL 
edit. GroL). 

(lOS) Berimond. the third in deacent from Heimanrk, Icing of tbe Oatrogotha, had retired into Spaing 
where he lived and died tai obacurlty. (Jomandea, c 33. p. 908, edit. Murator.) Bee the diacovery , nupiiala^ 
and death, of hla grandaon Eutharic (c. 58, p. S90) . Hia Roman gamea might render him popular. (€■» 
elodor. in Chran.) but Eutharic waa aaper in religione (Anonym. Valea. p. 793, 793). 

(lOS) Bee tbe counaela of Tbeodoric, and the profeaaiona of hla auoceawr, in Procopiua (Godi. I. i. e. U 
S) ; Jomandea (c. 59, p. 990, SBl), and Caaaiodorlua (Var. vUi. 1—7). Tbeae epIaUea are tbe trlumpli of 
Ida miniaierial eloquence. 

(107) Anonym. Valea. c . 794. Agnellua de Vitla Pont. Raven, in Moratori Script. Remm Itai Uwu II. 
P.Lp.67. AlbertiDeaerItUoned'ItaUa,p.311.t 



THE DECLINE AND FALL 

I permitted to miiig;le with the beoefacton of mankind, if an Italian hcnul 
had not been witness in a vision to the damnation of Tbeodoric,(l08^ wboae 
mul was plunged, bj the ministers of divine vengeance, into the volcano of 
Lipari, one of the flaming mouths of the infefnal woild.(109) 



CHAPTER XL. 

iSleoaUoB ofJuttin the Elder^IUign of /umiikm^I. The empn$$ Theedora-^ 
II. f\tcUoni of the circWf and ie£tion of QnuUuUinof^lo-^llL IVade and 
mmmfitdure of liflk— IV. Finane€$ and taxes^V. Ea^ke» of J%^~'~ 
Omrd^ of St. SoMa^FoHjfieaiioHi and froiUier$ tf ihit EaMwn 
Molition of the SchooU of Athens, and ^ consuUhiip of Borne. 

The emperor Justinian was bom(l) near the ruins of Sardica (the modern 
Sophia), ot an obscure racef 2) of Barbarians,(3) the inhabitants ot a wild and 
desolate country, to which the names of Daraania, of Dacia, and of Bulgaria, 
have been successively applied. His elevation was prepared by the adven- 
torous spirit of bis uncle Justin, who, with two other peasants of the same 
Ullage, deserted, for the profession of arms, the more useful employment of 
ihust^ndmen or shepherds. (4) On foot, with a scanty provision of biscuit in 
their knapsacks, the three youths followed the high road of Constantinople, and 
were soon enrolled, for their strength and stature, among the guanu of the 
emperor Leo. Under the two succeeding re^pns, the fortunate peasant emeiged 
to wealth and honours ; and his escape from some dangers which threatened 
liis life, was aAerward ascribed to the guardian anfl;el who watches over the 
;fate of kings. His long and laudable service in the Isaurian and Persian wan, 
would not have preserved from oblivion the name of Justin : yet they might 
-warrant the militaiy promotion, which in the course of fifty years, he gradually 
obtained ; the rank of tribune, of count, and of general, the dignity of senator, 
and the command of the guards, who obeyed him as their chief, at the import* 
ant crisis, when the emperor Anastasius was removed from the world. The 
power^l kinsmen whom he had raised and enriched, were excluded from the 
throne ; and the eunuch Amantius, who reigned in the palace, had secretly 
resolved to fix the diadem on the head of the most obsequious of bis creatures. 
A liberal donative, to conciliate the suffraFe of the guards, was intrusted for 
that purpa^ in the hands of their commander. But these weighty aiguments 
were treacherously employed by Justin in bis own favour ; and as no competi- 
ior presumed to appear, the Dacian peasarrt was invested with the purple, by 
the unanimoas consent of the soldiers, who knew him to be brave and gentle, 
of the cleivy and people, who believed him to be orthodox, and of the pro- 
vincials, who yielded a blind and implicit submission to the will of the capital. 
The elder Justin, as he is distinguished from another emperor of the same 
family and name, ascended the Byzantine throne at the age of sixty-ei^bt 
years ; and, had be been left to his own guidance, eveiy moment of a nine 

OOe) Thli lesend is rdatad by Gregoiy L (Dialog. Iv. SS), ftnd a|»pmv«i by Baraoiua (A. D. fi98» No. 
98) ; and boUi the Pope and Cardinal are grave doctors, suffictent to eatabllsb a probmUa opinion. 

(M9) Tbeodorie Mrnnir, or rnUwr OnMtodortiM, had deecribed in tragic Mndoa Uw ▼olcanoee of Lfpaii 
(Cluver. Sicilia, p. 406-410,) and Veenvina (ly. 50). 

(1) There ie sohm dlfflealty In the date of hie birth (Ludewig in Vit Justiniani, p. 135) ; none in the 
pinee— Ibe districi Bederiana— Um viUaM Taoreaium, whkh be afterward decorated with hia nanM and 
nplendour (0*Anvilie. Hist, de VAcad. kc torn. zzzi. p. 98r7— 293). 

(9) The namee of theee Dardanian peasanta ara OoMiic, and almoal English: Jmstidam la a traodatlon 
4ur Mfruud* (upright) ; his (btber Satatim* (in 6r«co-barbnnH» language »tipe») waa atylad in hla vUlagn 
f»io€k i8U0k) : his niotber Bigleniza waa softened into VIcllaotia. 

(3) Lndewig (p. 137—135,) attempts to justify the Anician name of Justinian and Tboodora, and to 
connect them with a (bmily fkom which the house of Austria has Ymtm derived. 

(4) 8«e the anecdotes of Prooopiua (c. 6), with the notes of N. Alemannus. The satirist would not 
flare sunic, in tbe yague and decent appellation of ycwn^o; , the /3iiko>0( and ev^eo^of of Zonaras. Tet 
way ara thoae names diasracaful t and what Cwman baron would not be proud to doacend firom Vbm 
" lof theOdyswy?* 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. « 

yeaiB' reign must have exposed to his subjects the impropnety of their choice. 
Hb ignorance wbs similar to that of Theodoric ; and it is remarkable, that in 
an age not destitute of learning, two contemporary monarchs had never been 
instructed in the knowledge of the alphabet/ cat the genius of Justin was 
far inferior to that of the uothic king : the experience of a soldier had not 
oualified him for the government of an empire ; and, though personally brave, 
tne consciousness of his own weakness was naturally atterKied with doubt, dis- 
trust, and political apprehension. But the official business of the state was 
diligently and faithfully transacted by the qusstor Proclus ;(6) and the a|^ 
emperor adopted the talents and ambition ci his nephew Jostmian, an aspiring^ 
youth, whom his uncle had drawn from the rustic solitude of Dacia, and edu- 
cated at Constantinople, as the heir of his private fortune, and at length of the 
Eastern empire. 

[A. D. 6S0 — 527.] Since the eunuch Amantius had been defrauded of his moneys 
It became necessaiy to deprive him of his life. The task was easily accom- 
plished by the chaige of a real or fictitious conspiracy ; and the judges were 
informed, as an accmnalation of guilt, that he was secretij addicted to the 
Manicbaean heresy. (6) Amantius lost his head ; three of h» companions, the 
first domestics of the palace, were punished either with death or exile ; and 
their unfortunate candidate for the purple was cast into a deep dungeon, over- 
whelmed with stones, and ignominiously thrown, without burial, into the sea. 
The ruin of Vitalian was a work of more difficulty and danger. That Gothic 
chief had rendered himself popular bv the civtl war which he bddly waged 
a0;amst Anastasius for the defence of tne orthodox faith, and afler the conclu- 
sion of an advantageous treaty, he still remained in the neighbourhood of Con- 
stantinople at the head of a formidable and victorious army of Barbarians. By 
the frail security of oaths, he was tempted to relinquish this advanta^ous 
situation, and to trust his person within tne walls of a city, whose inhabitants, 
particularly the hhe faction, were artfully incensed against him by the remem- 
Drance even of bis pious hostilities. The emperor and his nephew embraced 
him as the faithful and worthy champion of Hie church and state "; and grate- 
fully adorned their favourite with the titles of consul and general ; but in the 
seventh month of his consulship, Vitalian was stabbed witn seventeen wounds 
at the royal banquet ;(7) and Justinian, who inherited the spoil, was accused 
as the assassin ota spiritual brother, to whom he had recently pledged his faith 
in the participation of the Christian mysteries. (8) After the fiill of his rival, 
he was promoted, without any claim of military service, to the office of master- 
general of the Eastern armies, whom it was his duty to lead into the field 
against the public enemy. But in the pursuit of fame, Justinian miefat have 
lost his present dominion over the age and weakness of his uncle ; ana instead 
of acquiring by Scythian or Persian trophies the applause of his countfym.en,(9) 
the prudent warrior solicited their favour in the cnurehes, the circus, aiid the 
senate, of Constantinople. The Catholics were attached to the nephew of 
Justin, who, between the Nestorian and Eutycfaian heresies, trod the narrow path 
of infiexible and intolerant orthodoxy.(10^ In the first days of the new reign, be 
prompted and gratified the popular enthusiasm against the memory of the deceased 

Tbe ooMlor PiDdui wm Um IHood of 



(» HkTfrtiM m fralnd by Praooptw (PenAc lie U). 
Jimtinian, and Um ciBWDy of every otber adoption. 

(6) Manichsan signiflea Eutychlhii. Hear Um Airioos acdamatlona of Cotialantinople and Tyre, th« 
former no inore Uian six days alter Uie deoeaao of Anastaaiua. Tkew produced, the latter applauded, tho 
coniieli*a death (BaroniiM, A. D. 518, P. IL No. 15. Fleory, SIK. Eeolee. torn. tIL p. 900. MS^ from thtt 
Ooaaeile,UMn. v. p. 182.997). 

(7) His power, diarader, and InlentionB, are perftctly ezpiahied by the Count de Bnat (torn. is. p. 54" 
81). He was great-grandson of Aapar, herediury priace in the Lener Beytbia, and ooant of the OocUa 
fmderaH of Thrace. The Besii, whom he eould InikienGe, are the minor Goths of Jomandes (e. 41). 

<8) Justialanl patrietl AM^tlooe dteitur Interfectus Aiisse (Vtclor Tununensis, Chron. in Thesaur. Temp, 
ftealinr. P. U. p. 7). ProoopiiM ( Aneedoi. c. 7,) styles him a tyrant, but adUMwIedges Uie aStX^mstOf 
wMcb Is weU eipiatned iiy Alemanmis. 

(9) In his earliest youth (plane ndolescens) be had pas s e d some time as a hostage with Tbeedoife. 
Pior thie eariooa Ibet, Alemannus (ad Procop. Aneedot c. 9, p. 34, of the first edition) quotes a MB. hi»> 
tory of Jnsrinlan, by his preceptor Theophllus. Lndewig (p. 143,) wishes te make him a soldier. 

(It) Tba eeeieslasiical bislory of Jusdnlan will be shown hereafter. Soe Baitmios, A. D. 518-«lll\ 
«Bd tlw cooioiia artkle yistftaiaaau in the lodes t» the rtltb voIuim of Ms Annals, 



t? THE DECLINE AND FALL 

emperor. After a schism of thirty-four years, he reconciled the proud and Jtngiy 
spirit of the Roman pontiff, and spread amone the Latins a favourable report of 
his pious respect for the apostolic see. The tnronesof the East were filled with 
Catnolic bishops devoted to his interest, the clergy and the monks were gained 
by his liberality, and the people were taught to pray for ibeir future sovereign, 
the hope and pillar of the true religion. The magnificence of Justinian was 
displayed in the superior pomp of his public spectacles, an object not less sacred 
■ana important in the eyes of the multitude than the creed of Nice or Chalce- 
don : the expense of his consulship V7as estimated at two hundred and e^bty- 
«ight thouaand pieces of gold ; twenty lions, and thirty leopards, were proouced 
at the same time in t(ie amphitheatre, and a numerous train of horses, with their 
ilch trappings, was bestowed as an extraordinaiy giil on the victorious cha 
rioteers of the circus. While he indulged the people of Constantinople, and 
a^ceived the addresses of foreign king^9 the nephew of Justin assiduously culti 
vated the friendship of the senate* That venerable name seemed to qualify its 
members to declare the sense of the nation, and to regulate the succession ot 
the imperial throne : the feeble Anastasius had permitted the vigour of govern- 
inent to degenerate into the form or substance of an aristocracy ; and the mili- 
tary officers, who had obtained the senatorial rank, were followed by their 
domestic guards, a band of veterans, whose arms or acclamations might fix in a 
tumultuous moment the diadem of the East. The treasures of the state were 
lavished to procure the voices of the senators, and their unanimous wish, that he 
would be pleased to adopt Justinian for his colleac^ue, was communicated to 
the emperor. But this request, which too clearly admonished him of his 
approaching end, was unwelcome to the jealous temper of an aged monarch, 
desirous to maintain the power which he was incaoable of exercising ; and 
Justin, holding bis purple with both his hands, advised them to prefer, since an 
^*8ction was so prontable, some older candidate. Notwitbstandir^ this reproach, 
the senate proceeded to decorate Justinian with the royal epithet o^nobUtmtnus; 
and their decree was ratified by the affection or the fears of his uncle. After 
some time the languor of mind and body, to which he was reduced by an 
incurable wound in his thigh, indispensably required the aid of a guardian. 
He summoned the patriarch and senators; and in their presence solemnly 
placed the diadem on the bead of his nephew, who was conducted from the 
palace to the circus, and saluted by the loud and joyful applause of the people. 
The life of Justin was prolora^ed about four months, but from the instant of this 
ceremony, he was considereaas dead to the empire, which acknowledged Jus- 
tinian in the forty-fifth year of his age, for the lawful sovereign of the £asf.(ll) 
From his elevation to his death, Justinian governed the Roman empire 
thirty-eight years, seven months, and thirteen days. The events of his reign, 
which excite our curious attention by their number, variety, and importance, 
are diligently related by the secretanr of Belisarius, a rhetorician whom elo- 
quence had promoted to the rank of'^senator and prefect of Constantinople. 
According to the vicissitudes of courage or servitude, of favour or disgrace, 
Procopius( 12) successively composed the history, the panegyrict and the satire* 
of his own times. The eight books of the Persian, Vandalic, and Gothic 
wars,(13) which are continued in the five books of Agathius, deserve our esteem 
.as a laborious and successful imitatbn of the Attic, or at least of the Asiatic 
Kwriters of ancient Greece. His facts are collected from the personal experience 

(11) The reign of the elder JueUn may be foand in the Uiree Chronicles of Marcelliniu, Victor, and 

John Malala (torn. li. p. 130— ISO), the last of whom (tn spite of Hody, Prolegom. No. 14. 30, edit. Oxon.) 

lived Mon after Justinian (Jortin's Remarks, dtc. vol. iv. p. 383):*in the Ecclesiastical History of Ev»- 

■ grius (1. iv. c. 1, 8, 3. 9), and Uie Excerpta of Theodoras (Lector, No. 37), und in Cedrenus (p. 38»-i366), 

and Zonaras (1. xiv. p. 5d-<n), who may pass for an orisinal. 

(13) See die characters of Procopiita and Agathius in La MoUie le Vayer (torn. viii. p. 144—174), Vo*- 
slus (de Historicis Orvcis, I. ii. c S3) and Fabriclus (Bibliot. Grec. 1. v. c. 5, torn. vl. p. 948-978). Their 
religion, an honourable problem, betrays occasional a>nfonnity, with a secret atuebment to paganlsni 
, and philosophy. 

(13) In the seven first hooks, two Persic, two Vandalic, and three GnUilc, Procoplns has borrowed 
' rrum Appian the division of provinoiw and wars: the eighUi book, though it bears the name of Gothic, 
. Js a miscellaneous and general supplement down to the spring of Uie year SS3, from whence it Is contiaacd 
ky Agathius Ull 550 (Pagi, Crllica, A. D. 579, No. 5). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. S3 

md free conversation of a soldier, a statesman, and a traveller ; bis style con- 
tinually aspires, and often attains, to the merit of strength and elegance ; his 
reflections, more especrally in the speeches, which be too frequently inserts, 
oootain a rich fund of political knowledge; and the historian, excited by 
the generous ambition of pleasing and instructing posterity, appears to disdain 
4lie prejudices of the people, and the flattery of courts. The writings of 
Procopius(14) were read and applauded by his contemporaries ;( 1 5) but, 
although he respectfully laid them at the foot of the throne, the pride of 
Justinian must have been wounded by the praise of a hero, who perpetually 
««cJip8es the glory of his inactive sovereign. The conscious dignity of indepen- 
•dence was subdued by the hopes and tears of a slave ; and the secretary of 
Belisarius laboured for pardon and reward in the six books of the imperial 
Mfieei. He had dexterously chosen a subject of apparent splendour, in which 
vhe could loudly celebrate the eenius, the magnificence, and the piety of a prince, 
wboy both as a conqueror and legislator, had surpassed the puenle %(irtues of 
Themistocles and Cynis.(16^ Disappointment might urge the flatterer to 
'-secret revenge ; and tbe first glance of favour mk;fat ag[ain tempt him to suspend 
and suppress a iihel,(l7) in which the Roman Cyrus is degraded into an oaious 
and contemptible tyrant, in which both the emperor and his consort Theodora 
are seriousl^ represented as two demons, who have assumed a human form for 
the destruction of mankind. CIS) Such base inconsistency must doubtless sully 
tbe reputation, and detract trom the credit, of Procopius : yet, aAer the venom 
>of his malifm'ty has been suffered to exhale, the residue ot the anecdotes^ even 
4be most disgraceful facts, some of which had been tenderly hinted in his public 
history, are established by their internal evidence, or the authentic monuments 
of the times.(19)t From these various materials, I shall now proceed to describe 
the reign of Justinian, which will deserve and occupy an ample space. The 
present chapter will explain tbe elevation and character of Theodora, tbe fac- 
tions of the circus, and the peaceful administration of the East. In the three 
succeeding chapters, I shall relate the wars of Justinian which achieved the 
4»nque8t of Afnca and Italy: and I shall follow the victories of BeUisarius and 
i^arses, without disguising ttp vanity of their triumphs, or the hostile virtue of 
4he Persian and Gomic heroes. The series of this and the following volume 
will embrace the jurisprudence and theology of the emperor ; the controversies 
and sects which still divide the Oriental church ; tbe reformation of the Roman 
law, which is obeyed or respected by the nations of modem Europe. 
1. In the exercise of supreme power, the first act of Justinian was to divide 



(14) The litcnry fltl« of Praeoplufl hu been KNnewhKt unlacky. 1. His books de IMIo GoUileo wen 
■toten by Leoiwnl Aietis, and pubUriied (FiiMiiU, 1470, Venet. 1471, apod Janon. Mauaire, Aiiaal. 
'^ypopapb. torn. 1. edit poeterior, p. SOO. 304. 979. 399,) in hie own name (8oe Voeilas de HisL LaL I. 



Valkan libnuy, of which they were prcfecte. (Aleroan. in PnefaL Anecdot.) 3. The Greek text was 
not prfnied UU 1607, by Hoeechelius of Augebuif h (Dietionnaire de Bayle, torn. H. p. 783). 4. Tbe Parfe 
adilioa wae imperfectly exeeated br Claude Maltrei. a Jeeuit of Thoulouee (in 10A3), far distant from the 
Xoayre press and the Vatican MS. from which, however, he obtained some sopplementi. His pro- 
jDlsed commentartes, Abc. have never appeared. Tbe Agathltis of Leyden (15M) has been wisely 
reprinted by the Paris editor, with the liStin version of Bonaventara Vulcantus, a learned Interpreter. 
<Haet,pim.)« 
(15) AfstUus in PrBfkt p. 7, 8, i. Iv. p. 137. Evagrius, I. iv. c. 13. See likewise Pbotios, cod. liUI. 

(10) Ksee wisui (says be, PrsftL ad 1. de Ediflciis wtpt lenoiutTuv) Is no more than Kv^ vai^ur— a 
Nin! In these Ave books, Procopius affects a Christian, as well as a courtly style. 
(17) Procopliis dtsckwes himself (Prcfkt ad Anecdot. c. 1, 3. 5), and the anecdotes are reckoned as dia 



- ninth book by Saidas (torn. ill. p. IM. ediL Koster). The silence of Evagrius is a poor objeaion. Baiv- 

. .. ^ y.^ .»'..'-? - .. . jj wasthen in the Vatican library, in Us 

sal - ■ - 

Ai 

, a™ 

. A mo BS , iasMad of Jnstlaian, on the throne— the serrants who watched, beheld a fkeo without features, 



nias (A. D. M8, No. 94,} regrets the kMs of this secret history : 

Hn ^ .. . 

- ^w ^ 

_^ mlnlaii nn iss tho perftet 1 , , — 

fkam iier bed by rfral deroons-Ser marriage foretold with a neat demon— a monk saw the prince of tha 



1 eoaiody, and was llrst pobllstaed sixteen yean after his death, with the learned, but partial, notes of 
■ .nholss Alemannos (Lndg. IflBS). 
(18) JuBilaiaa an ass>-ilie perftet Hkeness of Domltisa (Anecdot c R). Theodora*s tovers driven 



a body walking without a head, 4M. Ax. Procopius declares his own and his friend's belief in theea 
<He»AMffal ilorles (e. IS). 

(19) Mootaaonleu (Cboalderatione sor la Orandeor et )a Decadence, dee Romains, c. xx.) gives credit to 
«thesa anacions, m conneeiad, 1. wltti tba waakneas ot the empire : and, 3. with the instabiUty of Jus«* 



«lin*itewa. 



U THE DECLINE AND FALL 

it with the woman whom he Wed, the famous Theodoni,(30) whose stranee* 
e)e?ation cannot be applauded as the triumph of female virtue. Under lEe. 
reign of Anastasius,the care of the wiJd beasts maintained by the e^reen factbn^ 
of Constantinople, was intrusted to Acacius, a native of the isle of Cyprus, who^ 
from his employment, was sumamed the master of the bean. This honourable 
office was ^iven after his death to another candidate, notwithstanding^ the diii* 
gence of his widow, who hal already provided a husband and a successor. 
Acacius had lefl three daughters, Comito,(2l) TnEODoaA, and Aoastasia, the 
eldest of whom did not then exceed the age of seven years. On a solemn festi- 
val, these helpless orphans were sent by their distressed and indignant mother* in 
the garb of suppliants, into the midst oif the theatre : the green taction received 
them with contempt, the blues with compassion ; and this differences which 
sunk deep into the mind of Tlieodora, was felt long afterward in the adminis 
tration of the empire. As they improved in age and beauty, the three sisters 
were successively devoted to the public and private pleasures of the Byzantine 
people ; and Theodora, after following Comito on the stage, in the dress of a 
slave, with a stool on, her bead, was at lei^th permitted to exercise her inde*- 
pendent talents. She neither danced, nor sung, nor pkyed on the flute ; her 
skill was' confined to the pantouime arts : she excelled in buiEM» characteis,. 
and as often as the comedian swelled ner cheeks, and complained with, a 
ridiculous tone and gesture of the blows that were inflicted, the whole theatre 
of Constantinople resounded with laughter and applause. The beauty of 
Theodora(22) was the subject of more flattering praise, and the source of more 
exquisite aelight. Her feature.^ were delicate and regular ; her complexkMV 
though somewhat pale, was tinged with a natural colour ; every sensation was- 
instantly expressea by the vivacity of her eyes ; her easy motions displayed 
the graces of a small but elegant ngure ; and either love or adulation might 
pvodaim, that painting and poeUy were incapable of delineating the matchlesfr^ 
excellence of her form. But this form was degraded by the facDitr with whicb 
it was exposed to the public eye, and prostituted to licentious aesires. Her 
venal charms were abanooned tn a promiscuous crowd of citizens and strangers, 
of eveiy rank and of eveiy profession : the fort|^te lover who had been pro- 
mised a night of enjoyment, was often driven Trom her bed by a stronger or 
more wealth7 favounte ; and when she passed through the streets, her presence 
was avoided bjf all who wished to escape either the scandal or the temptation.. 
The satirical historian has not blu5hed^33^ to describe the naked scenes which. 
Theodora was not ashamed to exhibit m the theatre.(S4) After exhausting the 
arts of sensual pleasure,(25) she most ungratefully murmured against the parBi*^- 
mony of Nature :(26) but her murmurs, ner pleasures, and her arts, must be 
Teiied in the obscurity of a learned language. After reding for some time the- 

(90) For die life and maanan of the emiiran Tbaodora, ate dw AacodoiM; nova otpeelally, a. 1-4. 
a, 1(^15| 16, 17, with Uie iearaed ootM of Alemannua— a reftrence which Is always impHed. 

(91) Combo wai aiWrward marrlad to Sittaa, duke of Armonia, dia ftebar pertaapi, at leaat ■ba aiigbl 
be die mother, of tha ampiam Sophia. Two aepbawaof Theodora may ba the eom of Anaaiaaia (Ala- 

I ff an - B, SQ 31^. 

(98) Her etatae waa raiMd at OonaUadnopIe, on a porphyry eolomn. Sea Proeopiaa (da Edit L i. e. 
U), who giyei her portrait la the Anecdoiee (c. 11). Alemaa. (p. 47,) produeea one fram a MoMfe at Ea 
Tenna, loaded with pearle and Jewels, and yet handeorae. 

(33) A fraf meat of the Anecdotes (c- 9)t somewhat too naked, was suppressed by Alcmamiua, thooah 
auaacin die VaUcan MR ; nor has die defect been supplied in die Paris or Yenioaedidoaa. La Motte 
le Vayer (torn. Tlii. p. 155,) gave the first hint of this curious and genuine passage (Jonin*s Ret^arks, 
▼Ql. iv. p. 366), which he had received from Rome, and It haa been since published In tha Managianfc 
(torn. ill. p. 9M--e90,) wldi a Ladn versioo. 

CM) Aner tha mention of a narrow drdle (as none could appear stark oakpd in tha tbaaua), Proeoplua 

dios proceeds : avavnrrema rt t» rw «a^ \nmu <««y«. Oirrcf U river «pi0bif avnr itn/Bn rw 

M^tfv s^nTW d( jc ol x^((, M cc rarro mftaxtnagnani ttmrfxainv tis ^aanv uBapSt Kmra |tf«v 
«ycAefi«vM toBiO¥. I have heaid that a learned prelate, now deceased, was food of quoting this passage 
in conversation * 

(95) Theodora svpasseil die Crfspa of AoaoniQB (Epigram liit.) who Imitalad the capilalla lozna of 
die ftmalai of Nola. Sea Quindilan losdtut viil. 6, and TorrenUus ad Horai. Sermon. L i. sal. 9, v. lOl. 
At a memorable supper, thiny slaves waited rouna the table; tan young man feaatad with Thaodoia. 
Bar chail^ waa aiiMMrsal. 

Et laasata viris, necdnm sadata, recesslt 

OK) Hdc aaa* rptm rpnmtatmp wd^i^mi cv«raX« np ^vatt jve^sMpimr irtl^nmi rt'h'H nrn 
lap s' ip s» a vw uvi Tfmwvt ^nn»^ dmwni ciir sm «ccn« tfift^u$9u 8ba wUMdIbr a AmU •llar^oi' 
WDkhaba nnight pour libadouB to the god of kiva. 



OF THE ROMAN £MFIR£. 9fr 

del%fat and contempt of the capita), she condescended to accompany Eceboluv 
a native of Tyre, who had obtained the government of the African PentapoJis. 
But this union was frail and transient : Ecebolus soon rejected an expensive or 
faithless concubine ; she was reduced at Alexandria to extreme distress : and 
in her laborious return to Constantinople, every city of the East admired and 
enjoyed the fair Cyprian, whose merit appeared to justify her descent from the 
peculiar island of Venus. The vague commerce of Theodora, and the most 
detestable precautions, preserved ber from the dan||^er which she feared ; yet 
once, anil once only, she became a mother. The mfant was saved and edu* 
cated in Arabia, by his father, who imparted to him on his deatb-bed, that he 
was the son of an empress. Filled with ambitious hopes, the unsuspectinr 
youth immediately hastened to the palace of Conatantinople, and was admitted 
to the presence of his moither. As he was never more teen, even after the 
decease of Theodora, she deserves the foul impatatioD of ess(in|puisbin|( with his 
life a secret so offensive to her imperial virtue. 

In the most algect state of her fortune and reputation, some vision^ either of 
sleep or of fancy, had whispered to Theodora the pleasiDg assurance that she 
wa» destined to become the ^Kxise of a potent monarch. Conscious of her 
approaching greatness, she veturoed from Paphlagonia to Constantinople ; aft- 
samed, like a skilful actress, a more decent character ; relieved her poverty hj 
the laudable industry of spinning wool ; and affected a life of cbasti^ and soli- 
tude in a small house, which she afterward changed into a magnificent tem- 
ple. (37) Her beauty, assisted by art or accident, soon attracted, captivated^ 
and fixed, the patrician Justinian, who already reigned with absolute sway undor 
the name of hts unde. Peifaaps she contrived to enhance the value oif a gift 
which she had so often lavished on the meanest of Dpankind: perhaps she 
inflamed at first by modest delays, and at last by sensual alhirements, the 
desires of a lover, who from nature or devotion was addicted to long vigils and 
abstemious diet When his first transports had subsided, she slill mamtained 
the same ascendant over his mind, by the moie solid merit of temper and 
understanding. Justinian deliebted to ennoble and enrich the olnect of his 
affection ; the treasures of the -East were poured at ber feet, and me nephew 
of Justin was determined, perhaps by religious semises, to bestow on his con* 
eubine the sacred and legal character <A a wife. But the laws of Rome 
expressly prohibited the marriage of a senator with aiiy female, who bad been 
dishonoured by a servile oivpn or theatrical profession : the empren LfOpiciDa, 
or Euphemia, a Barbarian of^tic manners, but of irreproachable virtue, refused 
to accept a prostitute for her niece ; and even Vigilantia, the superstitious mo- 
ther of Justinian, though she acknowledged the wit and beauty of TfaKwdora, 
was seriously apprehensive, lest the levity and anwance of thai artful paramour 
might corrupt the piety and happiness of her son. These obstacles were removed 
by the inflexible constancy of Justinian. He patiently expected the death of 
the empress; he despised the tears of his mother, who soon sunk under the 
weu^ht of her affliction ; and a law was promulgated in the name of the empe 
ror Justin, which abolished the rigid jurispruoenee of antiquity. A glorious 
repentance (the words of the edict} was left open for the unhappy females who 
had prostituted their persons on the theatre, and they were pennitted to contract 
a legal union with the most illustrious of the Romans.(2S) This indulgence 
was speedily followed by the solemn nuptials of Justinian and Theodora ; her 
dignity was gradually exalted with that of her lover j and, as soon as Justin had 
invested his nephew with the purple, the patriarch of^ Constantinople placed the 
diadem on the heads of the emperor ana empress of the East. But the usual 
honours which the severity of Roman manners bad allowed to the wives of princes^ 

CST) AnoDym. de AntiqiiHiit. C. P. I. 111. 198) m Btndurt Imperlttm Orieni. tom. i. p. 48. Ludewig (|x 
154,) aifuefl wintbty that Theodora would not have immortalised a brothel : but I apply this fact to hef 
weond and cbaHer reildenoe ai CmwtanUnnple. 

C») flee Uie old law in jQstlnian*t Code (1. ▼. tit ▼. lef . 7, tit. ixvH. leg. 1), under the yearn 390 aaih 
454. The new edict (about the year SBl or SBSL Atemaa. p. 38. 98,) very awfcwaidly repeali no niore» 
linn the danee of muUeree ««mse«, Hbertlnie, tabenwri« flee tfie novda 89 and 117, and a Gifelt 
iMMlpclhun JviiiiilaB to the Mebopt (Atanu. p. 41) 



iM THE DECLINE AND FALL 

•could not satisfy cither the ambition of Theodora or the fondness of Justinian.'* 
He seated heron the throne as an equal and independent colleague in the soFe- 
reigntj of the empire, and an oath of allegiance was imposed on the eovemors 
of the provinces in the I'oint names of Justinian and Theodora.(S9) The East- 
em world fell prostrate before the genius and fortune of the daughter of Acacius. 
The prostitute who, in the presence of innumerable spectators, had polluted 
the theatre of Constantinople, was adored as a queen in the same city, 
by grave magistrates, orthodox bishops, victorious g^enerals, and captive 
Tiionarchs.(30) 

Those who believe that the female mind is totally depraved by the loss of 
chastity, will eagerly listen to all the invectives of private envy or popular 
*esentment, whicn have dissembled the virtues of Theodora, exageeratea her 
vices, and condemned with rigour the venal or voluntaiy sins of the youthful 
4iarlot. From a motive of shame or contempt, she often declined tlie servile 
homage of the multitude, escaped from the odious light of the capital, and 
passed the greatest part of the year in the palaces ana gardens which were 
pleasantly seated on the sea coast of the Propontis and me Bospborus. Her 
private hours were devoted to the prudent as well as grateful care of her 
beauty, the luxury of the bath and tabic, and the long slumber of the evenii^ 
and tlie morning. Her secret apartments were occupied by the favourite women 
-and eunuchs, whose interests and passions she indulged at the expense of justice : 
the most illustrious personages of the Mate were crowded into a dark and suitiy 
anti-chamber, and when at last, after tedious attendance, they were admitted 
to kiss the feet of Theodora, they experienced, as her humour might suggest, 
the silent arrogance of an empress, or the capricious levity of a comedian. 
Her rapacious avarice to accumulate an immense treasure, may be excused by 
the apprehension of her husband^s death, which could leave no alternative 
•between ruin and the throne : and fear as well as ambition might exasperate 
Theodora against two generals, who during a malady of the emperor, had rashly 
declared that they were not disposed to acquiesce m the choice of the capital. 
But the reproach of cruelty, so repugnant even to her softer vices, has led an 
indelible stain on the memory of Theodora. Her numerous spies observed, 
-and zealously reported, every action, or word, or look, injurious to their royal 
mistress. Whomsoever they accused were cast into her peculiar prisons,(31) 
inaccessible to the inquiries of justice ; and it was rumoured, that the torture 
•of the lack, or scourge, had been inflicted in the presence of a female tyrant, 
insensible to the voice of prayer or pity. (32) Some of these unhappy victims 
perished in deep unwholesome dungeons, while others were permitted, after 
the loss of their limbs, their reason, or their fortune, to appear in the world the 
11 vine monuments of her vengeance, which was commonly extended to the 
children of those whom she had suspected or injured. The senator, or bishop, 
whose death or exile Theodora had pronounced, was delivered to a trusty mes- 
senger, and his diligence was quickened by a menace from her own mouth. 
^ If you fail in the execution ot my commands, I swear by him who liveth for 
•ever, that your skin shall be flayed from your body.'*(33^ 

If the creed of Theodora had not been tainted with heresy, her exemplaiy 
devotion might have atoned, in the opinion of her contemporaries, for pride^ 
avarice, and cruelty. But if she employed her influence to assuage the into- 
Jerant fury of the emperor, the present age will allow some merit to ner religion, 

CJS) I swear b} thoFither, &c. by 0)6 V ligin Mary, by the ibiir Gospeli, que in manlbus tenco, and 
by the holy Archangela, Michwl and Gabrieli ponm oonacientiam fermanumque aervitium m« aervatu- 
mm, urratlniinh DDNN.* Juatiniano et Theodore eonjngl ejua (Novell, viii. tit. 3). Woald the oath 
have been binding tn favour of the widow 1 Coromunea tituH et tilumphi, Jfcc. ( Alcnan. p. 47, 48.) 

(30) " Let greatnesa own her, and abe* • mean no more,** itc. 

'Without V^arburlon** critical teleMope, I ahonld nerer have aeen, In the general pictoie of triam|iliuic 
vice, anv peraonal ailoslon to Theodwa. 

(31) Her priaoM, a labyrinth, a Taitania (Anecdot c. 4), were under the palace. Darkneaa ia propl- 
<ioua to cruelty, bai It la likewtoe favourable lo calumny and fiction. 

(38) A more Jocular whipping waa inflicted on Satuminua, for preaumlng to aay that bia wift, a |fe> 
■vcmrtte of the empreaa, had not been found arfHrro^ (Anecdot. c 17). 

(U) Per Vlventem in accula excorlari te ftciam. An«taaluB de Villa Peat Roman, in VigUio, p. 40. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. «7 

and much indulgence 16 her speculative ejTors.(34) The name of Theodora 
was introduced^ with equal honour, in all the pious and charitable foundations 
ot Justinian ; and the most benevolent institution of his reign may be ascribed 
to the sympathy of the empress for her less fortunate sisters^ who had been 
seduced or compelled to embrace the trade of prostitution. A palace, on the 
Asiatic side of tne Bosphorus, was converted into a stately and spacious monas- 
tery, and a liberal maintenance was assig^d to five hundred women, who had 
been collected fh>m the streets and brothels of Constantinople. In this safe 
and holy retreat, they were devoted to perpetual confinement ; and the despair 
of some, who threw themselves headlone mto the sea, was lost in the gratitude 
of the penitents, who had been delivered from sin and miseiy by their generous 
benefactre88.(36) The prudence of Theodora is celebrated by Justinian bini- 
self ; and his laws are attributed to the sage counsels of his most reverend wife, 
whom he had received as the gift of the £liity.(36) Her courage was displa^red 
amidst the tumult of the people and the terrors of the courL Her chastity, 
from the moment of her union with Justinian, b founded on the silence of her 
implacable enemies ; and although the daughter of Acacius midit be satiated 
with love, yet some applause is due to the firmness of a mind which could 
sacrifice pleasure and habit to the stronger sense either of duty or interest. 
The wishes and prayers of Theodora could never obtain the blessing of a lawful 
son, and she burted an infant daughter, the sole ofl&pring of her marriaee.(37) 
Notwithstanding this disappointment, her dominion was permanent and aoso- 
Inte ; she preserved, by art or merit, the aiflkctions of Justinian ; and their 
seeming dissensions were always fatal to the courtiers wbo believed them to be 
sincere. Perhaps her health had been impaired by the licentiousners of her 
youth ; but it was always delicate, and she was directed by her physicians to 
use the Pythian warm baths. In this journey, the empress was followed by the 
praetorian pnefect, the great treasurer, several counts and patricians, and a 
splendid train of four thousand attendants: the highways were repaired at her 
approach ; a palace was erected for her reception ; and as she passed through 
Hitb^nia, she distributed liberal alms, to the churches, the monasteries, and the 
hospitals, that they might implore heaven for the restoration of her health.(38) 
At length in the twenty-fourth year of her marriage, and the twenty-second 
of her reien, she was consumed by a cancer :(39) and the irreparable loss was 
deplored by her husband, who, in the room ot a theatrical prostitute, might have 
selected the purest and most noble viigin of the East.'*(40; 

II. A material difiference may be observed in the games of antiquity : the 
most eminent of the Greeks were actors, the Romans were merely spectators. 
The Olympic stadium was open to wealth, merit, and ambition; and if tbe 
candidates could depend on their personal skill and activity, they might pursue 
the footsteps of Diomede and Menelaus, and conduct their own horses in the 
rapid career. (41) Ten, twenty, forty, chariots, were allowed to start at the 
.same instant ; a crown of leaves was the reward of the victor ; and his fame. 

(34) Ludewic, P- 161—106. I give him credit for th» charitable attempt, although k* had not much 
■charity in bis temper. 

(35) Compare the Anecdotea (c. 17,) witii the Edifloea a L c. 9), how dUieffenUy may the tame faa be 
Jtated ! John Malala (torn. ii. p. 174, 1750 obeerves, that on this, or a aimilar occaaioo, >he released and 
clothed tbe girla whom she had purchaaed from the Mews at five aurei apiece. 

(36) Novell, Till. 1. An allusion to Theodora. Her enemies read the name Dmwiiodoim (Aleman 

(37) 8t Sabas refused to pray for a son of Theodora, lest he should prove a heretic worse Uian Anas- 
tashis himself ((>rll in Vit BuSabs, apud Aleman. p. 70. 109). 

J 38} See John Malala, tom. U. p. 174. Theophanes, p. 158. Procoplus de Edlflc 1. ▼. c 3. 
39) Theodora Chalcedonensis synodi inimica canceris platjk toto corpore perfuse yitam prodlglose 
Ivlt. (Victor Tununenfis In Chron.) On such occasions an orthodox mind is steeled against pity. 
Alemanus (p. 13, 13,) understands the tvct^^s tKoquiOii of Theophanes, as cItH language, which does not 
Imply either piety or repeounoe ; yet two years after her death, 8t Theodora is celebrated by Paul Silen • 
tiarius fin Proem, v. 58—68). 

(40) As she persecuted the Popes and rejected a council, Baronlus exhausts the names of Ere, Dalila, 
Berodias, Spc: after which he has recourse to his infernal dlcUonaiy: clvis Infeml-^umna daanonum 
— eatanico agitalft spiriia— cstro percita diabolico, Ac. Ac. (A. D. 548, No. 94). 

(41) Read and feel the zxiiid book of the Iliad, a Uvlng picture of manners, passiotts, and the whole 
ibrm and spirit of the chariot race. West's OisBertation on the Olympic Games (aect zu— xrii > i 
«[|oeh cnrioua and authentic Information. 



S8 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

with tiiat of his family and counfnr, was chanted in lyric strains more dorabie 
than monuments of brass and marble. But a senator, or even a citizen, conscious 
of his dienity, would have blushed to expose his person or his horses in the 
circus of Rome The games were exhibited at the expense of the republic^ 
the magistrates, or the emperors ; but the reins were abandoned to servile 
hands : and if the profits of a favourite charioteer sometimes exceeded those 
of an advocate, they must be considered as the efiects of popular extravagance* 
and the high wages of a disgraceful profession. The race, in its first institution^ 
was a simple contest of two chariots, whose drivers were distinguished by 
rokite and red liveries { two additional colours, a light ffreen, and a cerulean 
blue, were afterward mtroduced j and as the races were repeated twenty-five 
times, one hundred chariots contributed in the same day to the pomp of the 
circus. The four^c^Mfu soon acquired a legal estabKshment, and a mysterious 
origin, and their fanciful colours were derived from the various appearances of 
nature in the four seasons of the year ; the red dog-star of summer, the snows 
of winter, the deep shades of autumn, and the cheerral verdure of the spring.(49) 
Another interpretation preferred the elements to the seasons, and Ae struggle 
of the jpneen and blue was supposed to represent the conflict of the earth and 
sea. Their respective victories annocincea either a plentiful harvest or a pros- 
perous navtfation, and the hostility of the husbandmen and marinen was some- 
what less absurd than the blind ardour of the Roman people, who devoted 
their lives and fortunes to the colour which they had espoused. Such folly was- 
disdained and indulged by the wisest princes ; but the names of Caiigulay 
Nero, Vitellius, Vcrus, Commodus, Caracalla, and Elagabulus, were enrolled 
fn the blue or green factions of the chrcos : they fremiented their stables^ 
applauded their favourites, chastised their antagonists, and deserved the esteem 
of the populace, by the natural or aflfected imitation of their manners. The 
bloody and tumultuous contest continued to distuHl) the public festivity, till the 
last a^ of the spectacles of Rome ; and Theodoric, from a motive ot justice 
or affection, interposed his authority to protect the greens against the violence 
of a consul and a patrician, who were passiciiately addicted to the blue factioo 
of the circus.(43) 

Constantinople adopted the follies, though not the virtues, of ancient Rome ; 
and the same tactions which had agitated the circus, rafed with redoubled fuiy 
in the hippodrome. Under the reign of Anastasius, this popular frenzy wa» 
inflamed by religious zeal ; and the greens, who had treacherously concealed 
stones and daggers under baskets of fruit, massacred, at a solemn festival, three 
thousand of their blue adversarie8.(44) From the capital, this i>estilence was 
difiused into the provinces and cities of the East, and the sportive distinction 
of two colours produced two strong and ixreconcileable factions, which shook 
the foundation of a feeble goveiiiment.(46) The popular dissensions, founded 
on the most serious interest, or holy pretence, nave scarcely equalled the 
obstinacy of this wanton discord, which invaded the peace of families, divided 
friends and brothers, and tempted the female 8ex> though seldom seen in the 
circus, to espouse the inclinations of their lovers, or to contradict the wishes of 
their husbaiKls. Every law, either human or divine, was trampled under foot,, 
and as long as the party was successful, its deluded followers appeared careless- 
ol private distress or public calamity. The license, without the freedom, ot 

(43) The four cotoum, ottattf russati, pruimL vauti^ nprment tbe fbur teMoiMf acconUng to Caml» 
d«riiu (Vtr. iii.51), who lavisbet madi wit tnd eloquence on tbie Uiestrlcftl myeierv. Of Uieee coloart. 
the tbree firat mmy be fkirly tranilated white, red, and jrem. f^enetus Is explained by eertJeue, a word 
▼arloua and vacoe : It is nroperiy the sky rdleeted in the sea ; bat custom and convenience may allow 
Hue as an equivalent (Robert. Stephen, sub voce. Spenoe's Polymetis, p. SS8). 

(43) Bee Onuphrlus Panvinlus de Ludts ClroensilNiB, I. L e. 10, U ; the xviith annotation on Maseou's- 
Hislory of the Germans : and Aleman. ad. c vH. 

(44) MaicelUn. in Chron. p. 47. Instead of the vulgar word veneta, he uses the more exquisite terms 
of semsa and eereelie. Baronlui (A. D. 501. No. 4, S, 0^ ^ eatisfled that the Uues wefe orthodox ; but 
TUlemont la augry at the supposition, and will not allow any martyrs In a playhouse (EUsu des Emo. torn, 
vi. p. 554). 

<45) See Procoplua, Ponlc I. L c 94. In describing the vkes of the flMthms and of die govenaMot^ 
the public is not more fkvouraMe than the eeeret historian. Aleman. (p. 98,) has quoted a fine passaga 
fiom Gregory Naxianwn, which provee the inveteracy of the evil. 



OF TH£ ROMAN £JM[PIR£L ft 

democracj, was revived at ADlioch and ConstantiDopIe, and the support of a 
Miction became necessaiy to eveiy candidate for civil or ecclesiastical Jhonoun. 
A secret attachment to the family or sect of Anastasius was imputed to the 
^ens : the blues were zealously devoted to the cause of orthodoxy and Jus- 
tmian9(46) and their gprateful patron protected, above five years, the cusorders of 
a faction, whose seasonable tumults overawed the palace, the senate, and the 
capitals of the £ast. Insolent with royal favour, the blues aflfected to strike 
terror by a peculiar and barbaric dress, the long hair of the Huns, their close 
beeves and ample garments, a lofty step, and a sonorous voice. In the day 
they concealed their two-edged poniaras, but la the night they boldly assem- 
bled in arms, and in numerous bands, prepared for eveiy act of violence and 
npine. Their adversaries of the ereen lactioo, or even inofiensive citizens 
were stripped and often murdered oy these nocturnal lobbeis, and it became 
dangerous to wear any gold buttons or girdles, or to appear at a late hour in the 
streets of a peaceful capital. A darii^ spirit, rising with impunity, proceeded 
to violate the safeguard of private houses ; and fire was employed to facilitate 
the attack, or to conceal the crimes of these factious rioters. No place was 
safe or sacred from their depredations ; to gratify either avarice or revenge, 
they profusely spilled the blood of the innocent ; churches and altars were 
polluted by atrocious murders ; and it was the boast 4>f the assassins, that their 
dexterity could always inflict a mortal wound with a single stroke of their 
dagger. The dissolute ^outh of Constantinople adq>ted the blue livery ot 
disorder; the laws were silent, and the bonds of^society were relaxed : creditors 
were compelled to resifn their obligations ; judges to reverse their sentence ; 
masters to enfranchise uieir slaves ; lathers to supply the extravagance of their 
children ; noble matrons were prostituted to the lust of their servants ; beautiful 
boys were torn from the arms of their parents ; and wives, unless they preferred 
a voluntary death, were ravished in the presence of their husbands.(47) The 
despair of the greens, who were persecuted by their enemies, and deserted by 
the magistrates, assumed the privilege of defence, perhaps of retaliation ; but 
those who survived (he combak, were dragged to execution, and the unhappy 
fugitives escaping to woods and caverns, preyed without mercy on the socie^ 
from whence they were expelled. Those ministers of justice who had courage 
to punish the crimes, and to brave the resentment of the blues, became the 
victims of their indiscreet zeal j a prsefect of Constantinople fled for refine to 
the holy sepulchre, a count of the East was ignominiously whipped, and a 
governor of^Cilicia was hanged, by the order of Theodora, on the tomb ot 
two assassins whom he bad condemned for the murder of his groom, and a 
daring attack upon his own life. (48) An aspiring candidate may be tempted 
to build his greatness on the public confusion, but it is the interest as well as 
dut]r of a sovereign to maintain the authority of the laws. The first edict ot 
Justinian, which was often repeated, and sometimes executed, announced his 
firm resolution to support the innocent, and to chastise the guilty of every 
denomination and colour. Yet the balance of justice was still inclined in 
favour of the blue faction, by the secret affection, the habits, and the fears ot 
the emperor ; his equity, after an apparent stn^Ie, submitted, without reluc- 
tance, to the implacable passions of Theodora, and the empre^ never forgot, 
or forgave, the injuries of the comedian. At the accession of the younger 
Justin, the proclamation of equal and rigorous justice indirectly condemned the 
partiality of the former neign. ''Ye blues, Justinian is no more! ye greenst he 
IS still alive r{4^) 

(46) The partiaUty of Jusdnian for Uie btaea ( Anaodot. e. 7,) la altMted by Evasriiia (Hlat Ecaloi. 1. It 
C39); John Halala (torn. li.p. 138, 139,) especially for Antloch; and Theophanea (p. 14S). 

(47) A wifo (says Procopiua), who was seized and almost ravished by a blue coat, threw herself Into 
the Bospbonis. The bishops of Uie second Syria (Ateman. p. 96,) depbre a simiiar suiekle, the gttiU 
or glory of female chsstlty, and name the heroine. 

(48) The doubtful credit of Proooplus (Anecdot. c. 17,) Is supported by the leas parUal Evagrius, who 
csoflrms the (het, and speetflM the namoa. The tragic Ate of the prsfecl of Constantinople is relaisd by 
Jota MahUa (torn. II p. 199). 

149) See Joliii Malala (torn. U. p. 147) ; yet be owns that Jufltlnian was attached to ttie Miiei. TiM 



so THE DECLINE AND FALL 

[A. D 532.] A sedition, virhic)i almost laid Constantinople in ashes, wai 
excited by the mutual hatred and momentary reconciliation ol the two factions 
In the 6uh year of bis reign, Justinian celebrated the festival of the ides ol 
lanuary : the ^ames were incessantly disturbed by the clamorous discontent ol 
the ^ens ; till the twenty-second race, the emperor maintained his silent 
gravity ; at length, yielding to his impatience, he condescended to hold, in 
abrupt sentencels, arid by the voice 'of a crier, the most singular dia]ogue(50) 
that ever passed between a prince and his subjects. Their first complaints 
were respectful and modest : they accused the subordinate ministers of oppres- 
sion, and proclaimed their wishes for the long life and victoiy of the emperor. 
" Be patient and attentive, ye insolent railers,^' exclaimed Justinian ; " be mute, 
ye Jews, Samaritans, and Manichseans." The greens still attempted to awaken 
nis compassion. ** We are poor, we are innocent, we are injured, we dare not 
pass through the streets : a general persecution is exercised against our name 
and colour. Let us die, O emperor, but let us die by your command, and for 
your service !" But the repetition of partial and passionate invectives degraded^ 
in their eyes, the majesty of the purple : they renounced allegiance to the 
prince who refused justice to his people ; lamented that the father of Justinian 
bad been bom : and branded his wa with the opprobrious names of a homi- 
cide, an ass, ana a perjured tyrant. *' Do you despise ^our lives ?" cried the 
indignant monarch : the blues rose with luir from their seats ; their hostile 
clamours thundered in the hippodrome ; and their adversaries, deserting th« 
unequal contest, spread terror and despair through the streets of Constantinople 
At this dangerous moment, seven notorious assassins of both factions, who nav^ 
been condemned by the prefect, were carried round the cit^, and afterwari 
transported to the place of execution in the suburb of Pera. Four were imme 
diately beheaded ; a fiflh was banged : but when the same punishment waf 
mflicted on the remaining two, the rope broke, they fell alive to the gpround 
the populace applauded their escape, and the monks of St. Conon, issuing fron 
the neighbouring convent, convejed them in a boat to the sanctuary of the 
church.^51) As one of these criminals was of the blue, and the other of the 
green livery, the two factions were equally provoked by the cruelty of their 
oppressor or the^ ingratitude of their patron ; and a short truce was concluded 
till they had delivered their prisoners, and satisfied their revenue. The palace 
of the pnefect, who withstood the seditious torrent, was instantly burnt, his officers 
and guards were massacred, the prisons were forced open, and freedom was 
restored to those who could only use it for the public destruction. A military 
force, which had been despatched to the aid of tne civil magistrate, was fiercely 
encountered by an armed multitude, whose numbers and boldness continually 
increased : and the Heruli, the wildest Barbarians in the service of the empire, 
overtumea the priests and their relics, which, from a pious motive, had been 
rashl^r interposed to separate the bloody conflict. The tumult was exasperated 
by this sacrilege, the people fought with enthusiasm in the cause of God ; tbe 
women, from the roofs and windows, showered stones on the heads of the 
soldiers ; who darted firebrands against the houses ; and the various flames,, 
which had been kindled by the hands of citizens and strangers, spread without 
control over the face of the city. The conflagration involved the cathedral of 
St. Sophia, the baths Zeuxippus, a part of the palace, from the first entrance to. 
the altar of Mars, and the long portico from the palace to the forum of Con- 
stantine ; a large hospital, with tbe sick patients, was consumed ; many 
churches and stately edifices were destroyed, and an immense treasure of gold 
and stiver was either melted or lost. From such scenes of horror and distress 
the wise and wealthy citizens escaped over the Bosphonis to the Asiatic side 

•eeming diaeord of the emperor and Theodora, Ig pertaape viewed with too much jealoaiy and refinenent 
by Procopius (Anecdot. c. 10). 8eo Aleman. rivfat. p. 6. 

(50) This dialogue, which Theophanes has preaerved, exhibiu the popular languase, as well aa tb». 
mannera, of Constantinople, in the vitb century. Their Greek is mingled with many auaoge and bat 
barouB words, for which Ducange cannot always find a meaning or etymology. 

(51) Bee tbia church and monaatery In Ducange, C. P. Christtena, 1. iv. p. laS 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 3t 

and durine five days Constantinople waa abandoned to the factionsy whose 
watchword* Nika, vanqmsk ! has ^ven a name to this memorable sedition, fsis)' 

As lon^ as the factions were divided, the triumphant blues, and desponding 
g^reens, appeared to behold with the same indifference the disorders of the* 
state. They agreed to censure the coirupt management of justice and the 
finance ; ana tM two responsible ministera, the artful Tribonian, and the rapa- 
cioQs John of Cappadocia, were loudly arraigned as the authors of the public 
miseiy. The peaceful murmurs of the people would have been disregarded : 
they were heani with respect when the city was in flames ; the ausstor, and 
the pnsfect* were instantly removed, and their offices were filled by twa 
lenaton of blameless integrity. After this popular concession, Justinian pro- 
ceeded to the hippodrome to confess his own errors, and to accept the repent- 
ance of his grateful subjects; but they distrusted his assurances, though' 
solemnly pronounced in tbe presence of the holy gospels ; and the emperor, 
alamied[ by their distrust, retreated with orecipitation to the strong fortress of 
the palace. The obstinacy of the tumult was now imputed to a secret and 
ambitious conspiracy ; and a suspicion was entertained, that the insuigents, more 
especially tbe green faction, had been supplied with arms and money by 
Hypatius and Pompey, two patricians, who could neither forget with honour,. 
nor remember with safety, that they were the nephews of the emperor Anas- 
tasius. Capriciously trusted, disgraced, and pardoned, by the jealous levity of 
the monarch, they had appeared as loyal servants before the throne ; and during 
five days of tbe tumult, they were detained as important hostages ; till at 
length, the fears of Justinian prevailing over his prudence, he viewed the two 
brothers in the light of spies, perhaps of assassins, and sternly commanded 
them to depart from the palace. After a fiuitless representation, that obedience 
might leao to involuntary treason, they retired to their houses, and in the 
morning of the sixth day Hypatius was surrounded and seized by the people, 
who, regardless of bis virtuous resistance, and the tears of his wife, transported 
their fiivourile to the forum of Constantine, and instead of a diadem, placed a 
rich collar on his head. If the usurper, who afterward pleaded the merit of 
his delajr, had complied with the advice of his senate, and ui^d tbe fuir of 
the multitude, their first irresistible effort might have oppressed or expelled his 
trembling competitor. The Byzantine palace enjoyed a free communication 
with the sea ; vessels lay ready at the garden stairs : and a secret resolution 
was already formed, to convey the emperor with his family and treasures to a 
safe retreat, at some distance from the capital. 

Justinian was lost, if the prostitute whom he raised from the theatre had not 
renounced the timidity, as well as the virtues, of her sex. In the midst of a 
council, where Belisarius was present, Theodora alone displayed the spirit of' 
a hero ; and she alone, without apprehending his future hatred, could save the 
emperor from the imminent daneer, and his unworthy fears. *' If flight," said 
tbe consort of Justinian, '* were tbe onl^ means of safety, yet I should disdain to 
fly. Death is the condition of our birth ; but thej who have reigned should 
never survive the loss of dimity and dominion. 1 implore Heaven, that I may 
never be seen, not a day, without my diadem and purple ; that I may no longer 
behold the light, when I cease to be saluted with the name of queen. If you 
resolve, O Cesar, to fly, you have treasures ; behold the sea, you have ships i 
but tremble lest the desire of life should expose you to a wretched exile and 
ipiominious death. For my own part, I adhere to the maxim of antiquity, that 
the throne is a glorious sepulchre." Tbe firmness of a woman restored the 
courage to deliberate and act, and courage soon discovers the resources of the 
most desperate situation. It was an easy and a decisive measure to revive the 
animosity of the factions ; the blues were astonished at their own euilt and 
folly, that a trifling injury should provoke them to conspire with their impla- 
cable enemies against a gracious and liberal benefactor; they again proclaimed 

est) TIm hlttory of the JVtfta sedition !■ extracted from Marcellinm (ia Ciiron.)i Proeopini (Penle. 1. e. 
SSi, John Malala (torn. 11. p. 813-918), Cbron. PaachaL (pk33S-3IO), Tbeopbanw (ChroiHwraph. p. IM^ 
-l»),«iidZongrM(LjlT.p.61-«3). -■-r-j- 



» THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Ibe DMnestT of Justinian, and the ereem, with their uDstart empeior, wera left 
alone in the bippodjome. The Idelitj of the g;uaras waa doubtful : but the 
militan force of Justiniau consisted in three thousand veterans, who bad been 
trained to valour and discipline in the Persian and lUyrian wan. Under tlie 
•command of Belisarius and Mundus, tbey silently marched in two divisions finm 
the palace, forced their obscure way thvougb narrow passages* ezpiring fleiiies» 
and falling edifices, and burst open at the same moment the two opposite gates 
of the hippodrome. In this narrow sj^cet the disorderly and afinsnted crowd 
was incapable of resisting on either side a firm and tegular attacK ; the bluet 
signalized the fury of their repentance ; and it is computed, that above thirty 
thousand persons were slain in the merciless and promiscuouB cama^ of the 
day. Hypatius was draeged from his throne, and conducted with hn brother 
Pompey to the feet of the emperor ; tbey imploied his clemem^ ; but their 
-crime was manifest, their innocence uncertain, and Justinian had been loo much 
terrified to forgi/e. The next morning the two nephews of Anastasius, with 
eighteen tUuHrums accomplices, of patrician or consular rank, were privately 
-executed by the soldiers ; their bodies were thrown iolo the sea, their palaces 
razed, and their fortunes confiscated. The hippodrome itself was condemned, 
<luTing several years, to a mournful silence ; with the restoration of the games* 
the same disorders revived ; and the blue and green factions continued to afflict 
the reiffn of Jastinian, and to disturb the tranquillity of the Eastern empire.^53) 
III. That empire, after Rome was barbarous, still embraced the nations 
whom she had conc^uered beyond the Hadriatic, and as far as the fiontiers of 
Ethiopia and Persia. Justinian reif^ned over siity-foar provinces, and nine 
hundred and tbiily-five cities ;(54) his dominions were blessed by nature with 
the advantages ofsoil, situation, and climate ; and the improvements of human 
art had been perpetually diffused along the coast of the Mediterranean and the 




and sixty tnousand quarters of wheat for the use of Constantinople ;(66) and the 
capital of Justinian was supplied with the manufactures of Sidoo, fifteen centu- 
ries after they had been celebrated in the poems of Homer.(67) The annual 
powers of vegetation, instead of being exhausted by two thoasand harvests, 
were renewea and invigorated by skilful husbandly, rich manure, and season* 
able repose. The breed of domestic animals was infinitely nniUiplied. Planta* 
tions, buildings, and the instruments of labour and lujuiyt which are more 
durable than the tenn of human life, were accnmulated by the care of succes 
sive generations. Tradition preserved, and experience simplified, the humble 
practice of the arts : society was enriched by the division of labour and the 
iacility of exchange ; and every Roman was lodged, clothed, and subsisted, by 
the industrv of a thousand hands. The invention of the loom and distaff has 
been piously ascribed to the gods. In every age, a variety of animal and vege- 
table productions, hair, skins, wool, flax, cotton, and at length stjfc, have been 
skiliuAy manufactured to bide or adorn the human body ; they were stained 
with an infusion of permanent colours: and the pencil was successfully em- 
ployed to improve the labours of the loom. In tlie choiceof those colours(58) 

(53) Marcelllnai sayi, Inceneral teima, InDomerti popolit In drm Craeidatti. ProflopiiM nvabcn 
ao,006 vicilini : and the 39,000 of Tbeopbanea are swelled to 40,000 by \be mote recent 2<anarM. Such !■ 
the ueuaJ prognm of ougBerailon. 

(54) Uierocles, a contemporary of JnatinJao, compoaed his TwitX0»s dUaefaria, p. 631). or iwriaw of 
the eastern province! and citiea, before the year 535 ( Weneling to Pnefat. aod Not ad p. OB, tec.) 

(55) See the book of Gencsia (xil. 10,) and the administration of Joseph. The annals of the Greeks and 
Hebrews agree in the early arts and pleiity of Eeypt : bat this antiquity supposes a Umg seriesof Improve- 
ments; and Warhurton, who ia almost stifled by the Hebrew, calla aloud ibr Uw SamniitaB chraMkHV* 
(Divine Lecadon, vol. ill. p. 90, iU.)* 

(50) Elchi millioiM of Boman OMdII, besldea a contribntlon of*60.0e0 anrel ft>r the expense* of water 
carriage, from which the suMect was graciously eimased. See the ziiith Edict of Josttaian : tha HioBbam 
are checked and verified by the acroement of the Greek and Latin texts. 

(57) Homer*s Iliad, vl. S80. These veils, ircnAoc ira/i«o(iriXoi, were the works of the Bidonian i 
'utthii • " " " ^ " " — '' ' 



But tnia pasaage Is more bonoorable to the manufhetures than to the navigation of PboBnicia, from whence 
Ihey had been Imported to Troy in Phryglaa bottosia. 
(») Bee in Ovid (de Arte Amaiidi,Ui.9Q0»Scc.a poeUeal lift of twelve ooloan bonowedfiooa llowei% 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 35 

imitate the beauties of nature, the freedom of taste and fashion was 
but the deep purple,(59) which the PhcBniciana extracted from a 

, was restrained to the sacred person and palace of the emperor ; and 

the penalties of. treason were denounced against the ambitious subjects, who 
dand to usurp the prerogative of the throne.(60) 

I need not explain that tiikUl) is originally spun from the bowels of.acatei- 
pillar, and that it composes the golden tomb from whence a worm emeiges in 
the toim of a butterflf. Till the reign of Justinian, the silkworms, who feed 
OB the leaves of the white mulbefiy-tree, were confined to China ; those of the 
pine, the oak, and the ash, were- commbn in the forests both of Asia and 
Snrope ; but as their education is more difficult, and their produce more uncer- 
tain^ they were generally neglected, except in the little island of Ceo6,near the 
coast of Attica. A thin gauze was piocured from their webs, and this Cean 
nanu&cture, the invention of a woman, for female use, was kxig admired both 
in the East and at Rome. Whatever suspicions may be raised by the garments 
of the Medes and Assyrians, Virgil b the most ancient writer who expressly 
nentsons the soft wool which was combed from the trees of the Seres or Chi- 
nese ;(6%) and this natural error, less marvellous than the truth, was;slowly 
<3arreetea by the knowledge of a valuable insect, the first artificer of the luxury 
of nations. That rare and elegant luxury was censured in the reign of Tibe- 
rius, by the gravest of the Romans ; and Pliny, in affected though forcible lan- 
guace, has condemned the thirst of gain, which expk>red the last confines of the 
earth, for the pernicious purpose of exposing to the public eye naked draperies 
and transparent matrons.(63)* A dress whidi showed the turn of the limbs, and 
colour of the skin, mif^mtify vanity, or {>rcyvoke desire ; the silks which had 
been cVoselT woven m China were sometimes unravelled by the Phoenician 
women, and the precious materials were multiplied by a looser texture, and the 
intermixture of linen threads.^64) Two bundled years after the age of PJiny, 
the use of pure or even of mixed silks was confined to the female sex, till the 
opulent citizens of Rome and the provinces were insensibly familiarized with 
the example of Elagabalus, the first who, by this Geminate habit, had sullied 
the digni^ of an emperor and a man. Aorelian complained, that a pound of 
silk was sold at Rome for twelve ounces of gold : but the supply increased with 
the demand, and the price diminished with the supply. If accident or mono- 
poly sometimes raised the value even above the standard of Aurelian, the manu- 
factures of Tyre and fierytus were sometimes compelled hr the operation of 
the same causes to content themselves with a ninth part ot that extravagant 
rate.(65) A law was thoii^t necessary to discriminate the dress of comeoians 

the elementfl, Itc. Bat U li almoit impoMtble to dlMriminate by words aU the nice and Tarloiu ibadea 
both of art and natore. 

(SS) BytkedlaQOvi 
had aitrong aaell, ai 

If 3,) nigredo saa^tnea. ^ ^ 

S15,) wiU anaae and aadaiy ttao reader. I doubt whether fall book, eepeetany in England, le ae weU 
known ai it deserrea to be> 

(00) Historical proofs of this Jeaton^f have been ocoaston^ Introduced, and many more might have 



amre. 

noverrof coehlaeal, iacwikr aarpasi the ookraia of anllqaity. Their royal porple 
U, and a dark cast as deep as baU*B blood. . . .obM:aritas rabens (says Cassiodoriua, Var. 
igutnea. The president Goguet (Ortghie des Lolx et des Artt, part 11. 1, if. c. 3, p. 184— 



been added; bat ue aiblttary acts of despotism were Jnsttfled by the sober and general declarations of 
law (Codex Theodosian. L z. tit. 81, leg. 3. Codex Josilnlaa. 1. xi. tiu 8, leg. 5). An Inglorious permis- 
afcm, and necessaiy natriction, was appUsdto the mrfsish the female danoen (Cad. Theodoa.l.zT.tlt. 7, 
fcg.ll). 

• (61) In the faiaiofy of tmeets (fhr mora wonderful than Ovid*s Metamorpboaes), the sUkworm holds a 
conaplcooas place. The bombyx of the We of Ceoo, as described by Pliny (Hist. Natar. xl. 96, 97, with 
the noien of the two learned Jesoits, Hardonin and Brotiei), may be lllustmied by a similar speeiea 
in China (llenolres sor les Chlnola, torn. ii. p. 575—566) ; but our sUkworm, as well as the whhe mol- 
heny-tree, were unknown to Theophmstua and Pliny.' 

(68) Georgic il.l9L Serlca quando venerint in osam planfssfme non scio; sosplcor tamen in Jnlil 
Gnaris wro, nam ante non Invenio, says Jnscns Lipalus (Exenrsas 1. ad Tacit. Annal. 11. 32). See Dion 
Casslua (1. xlill. p. 3SB, edit. Behnar,) and Paosanias (1. vi. p. 519), ttas first who describes, however 

(93) Tarn loaflm|tta orbe petitnr, at in pnUieo matrona traaslaceat . i . . .at deondet ftnalnas vesds 
(Plia. vi. 90, xi. 91). Vano and Publlus flyros had already played on the Toga viuea, ventus texilis, and 
nsbula liaea (Borat SemMw. L 9l lOt, with the notes of TorrenUus and Daeisr.) 

(64) On the texture, cokmrs, names, and use of the silk, half silk, and linen garments of antiqafty, 
•ae ifaa pfofovad, diffusa, and obseare reaearehes of the great Sahnatius (in Hist. Angost. p. 197. 300, 
310.380. 341, 349. 344. 38&-301. 366. 513), who was ignorant of the most common trades of Dijon or 



X^eyden. 

top 



[65) Flavins Vopiscoa in Aorelian, e. 45, in Hist. AugosU p. 994. See Salmatiaa ad Hist Aif. p. 309, 

Voi. III.— D 



54 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

from that of senators ; and of the silk exported from its native countiyi the Car 
greater part was consumed by the subjects of Justinian. The/ were still' 
more intimately acquainted with a shell-fish of the Mediterranean, sumam«d< 
the silkworm of the sea ; the fine wool or hair by which the mother-of-pearl 
affixes itself to the rock, is now manufactured for curiosity rather than use : and 
a robe obtained from the same sii«ular materials, was the gift of the Roman 
emperor to the satraps of Armenia. fsey 

A valuable merchandise of small oulk is capable of defraying the expense of. 
laud carriaee ; and the caravans traversed the whole latitude of Asia in twc 
hundred and forty-three days, from the Chinese ocean to the sea-coast of Syria.. 
Silk was immediately delivered to the Romans by the Persian merchants,(67> 
who frequented the faiirs of Armenia and Nisi bis: but thb trade, which in the 
intervals of truce was oppressed hj avarice and jealousy, was totally inter- 
rupted by the long wars of the rival monarchies. The great king might 
proudly number So^diana, and even Serica^ among the provinces of his empire ;: 
but his real dominion was bounded by the Oxus, and his useful intercourse 
with the Sogdoites, beyond the river, aepended on the pleasure of their con- 
querors, the white Huns, and the Turks, who successively reigned over that 
industrious people. Yet tae most savage dominion has not extirpated the seeds 
of agriculture and commerce, in a region which is celebrated as one of the four 
garaens of Asia ; the cities of Samarcand and Bochara are advantageously 
seated for the exchange of its various productions ; and their merchants pur- 
chased from the Chinese(68) the raw or manufactured silk which thejr tran- 
sported into Persia for the use of the Roman empire. In the vain capital ol 
China, the Sogdian caravans were entertained as the suppliant embassies oi 
tributaiy kii^doms, and if they returned in safety, the Dold adventure wa» 
rewarded with exorbitant gain. But the difficult and perilous march from 
Samarcand to the first town of Shensi, could not be performed in less than 
sixty, eighty, or one hundred days ; as soon as they had passed the Jaxartes 
they entered the desert ; and the wanderine hordes, unless thev are restrained 
by armies and garrisons, have always considfered the citizen and the traveller as 
the objects of lawful rapine. To escape the Tartar robbers and the tyrants of 
Persia, the silk caravans explored a more southern road ; they traversed the 
mountains of Thibet, descended the streams of the Ganges or the Indus, and 
patiently expected, in the ports of Guzerat and Malabar, the annual fleets of 
the West.(69) But the dangers of the desert were found less intolerable than 
toil, hunger, and the loss of time ; the attempt was seldom renewed, and the 
only European who has passed that unfrequented way, applauds his own dili- 
gence, that In nine months after his departure from Pekin, he reached the 
mouth of the Indus. The ocean, however, was open to the free communica- 
tion of mankind. From that great river to the tropic of Cancer, the provinces 
of China were subdued and civilized by the emperpra of the North : tney were 
filled about the time of the Christian era with cities and men, mulberry-trees 
and their precious inhabitants ; and if the Chinese, with the knowledge of the 
compass, had possessed the genius of the Greeks or Phoenicians, they might 

mnd Pllnlu. Exereitat In floUomn, p. 6M, ttS The AnecdotM of Proccfilat (c S5), ilata • partial and 
imperfect rate of the price of lilk in the time of Jiutinian. 



(60) Proeopiita de Edif. 1. iii. c 1. Then j^mim dtmer w finad near Bnynia, Bidly, Oonka, and 
f inorca ; and a pair of glovee of their iIUe was preeeoted to Fope Benedict XIv. 
(67) Procopine Penic 1. 1. e. 90, 1. ii. e. 85 Gothic I. iv. c 17. Menander in Excerpt. Legat. p. 107. 



or the Parthian or Peraian empire, Isidore of Charax (in Stattmaia Parthkli, p. 7, 6, In Hudaoa, Geofraph. 
Minor, torn, li.) has marlted the roads, and Ammianus MaroeUiniu (I. xxiii. e. 6, p. 400,) ins eDumeraieil 
the proTinoea* 

(68) The Wind admiration of the Jeniils oonfoiuida the diflhrent perioda of the Chinese history. They 
are more critically distinguished by M. de Guignes (HisL des Hnaa, torn. i. pan i. in the Tables, part ii. in 
the Geography, llemotres de i*Academie des InscripUons, torn, xxzii. xxxyI. xHL xlili.), who disoovem- 
the gradual progress of the truth of tlie annals and the extent of the mooarehy, till the Christian era. He 
has aearcheo, with a curlooa eye, the connexiona of the Chineae with the nationa of the Weat; but theae 
oonnexiona are alight, casual, and obacnre ; nor did tlie Romaaa entertain a auaplckm that the Serea or 
BiniB poaaaaaed an empire not inferior to tlieir own.t 

(CU) The roada from China to Perria and Hindoatan, mav be inyeatlgated in the rdationaof Haclduyt 
and Tlievenot (the ambaaaadora of Sharokh, Anthony Jenkinaon, the Fere Graober, Jbe. See bkewiae 
Hanway's Travels, vol. i. p. 345—357). A communication through Thibet has been lately explored by 
Un EagUdi sovereigns of Bengal. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 35 

hare tpread their discoveries over the southern hemisphere. I am not qualified 
to examine, and I am not disposed to believe, their distant voyas^es to the Per- 
sian i^ir or the Cape of Good Hope ; but their ancestors might equal th^ 
labours and success of the present race, and the sphere of their navigation 
might extend from the isles of Japan to the straits of Malacca, the i>illars, if we 
may apply that name, of an Oriental Hercules. (70) Without losing sieht of 
land, they might sail^ alotig the coast to the extreme 'promontory of Achin, 
-which is annually visited by ten or twelve ships laden with the productions, 
the manufactures, and even the artiGcers, of China ; the island of Sumatra and 
the opposite peninsula, are faintly delineated(71 ) as the regions of gold and 
silver : and the trading cities, named in the geography of rtolemy, may indi- 
cate, that this wealth was not solely derived from the mines. The direct 
interval between Sumatra and Ceylon is about three hundred leagues : the 
Chinese and Indian navigators were conducted by the flight of birds and peri- 
odical winds, and the ocean might be securely traverseain square-built snips, 
which, instead of iron, were sewed together with the strong thread of the cocoa- 
nut. Ceylon, Serendib, or Taprobana, was divided between two hostile 
princes : one of whom possessed the mountains, the elephants, and the luminous 
carbuncle, and the other enjoyed the more solid riches of domestic industry, 
forei^ trade, and the capacious harbour of Trinquemale, which received and 
dismissed the fleets of the East and West. In this hospitable isle, at an equal 
distance (as it was computed) from their respective countries, the silk mer- 
chants of China, who had collected in their voyages aloes, cloves, nutmeey and 
santal wood, maintained a free and beneficial commerce with the inhabitants 
of the Persian gulf. The subjects of the great king exalted, without a rival, his 
power and magnificence ; and the Roman, who confounded their vanity by 
comparine: his paltry coin with a eold medal of the emperor Anastasius, had 
sailed to Ceylon, in an Ethiopian ship, as a siinpla pa8senger.(72) 

As silk became of indispensable use, the emperor Justinian saw with con- 
cern, that the Persians had occupied by land and sea the monopoly of this 
important supply, and^ that the wealth of his subjects was continually drained 
by a nation of enemies and idolaters. An active government would have 
restored the trade of Egypt and the navigation of the Red Sea, which had 
decayed with the prosperity of the empire ; and tlie Roman vessels might 
have sailed, for the purchase of silk, to the ports of Ceylon, of Malacca, or 
even of China. Justinian embraced a more humble expedient, and solicited 



._ trophies of a Grecian conaueror. Along 

coast, they penetrated to the equator in search of gold, emeralds, and aromatics ; 
but they wisely declined an unequal competition, in which they must be always 
prevented by the vicinity of the Persians to the markets of India j and the 
emperor submitted to the disappointment, till his wishes were eratihed by an 
unexpected event. The gospel had been preached to the Inoians : a bishop 
already governed the Christians of St. Thomas on the pepper coast of Malabar : 
a church was planted in Ceylon, and the missionaries pursued the footsteps of 

C70) For Um Chlneae nsvigatioa to Malacca and Achin, perhapa to Cejlon, we Renaudoi (on the two 
Mahometan travdlen. p. 6— U. 13—17. 144—157), Dainptoi (vol. ii. p. IJtt), the Hmu FhlUiaophinue dea 
deoz Indee (torn. i. p. 0$, and the HisL Generales dea Vovagee (torn. vl. p 901). 

(71) The knowiedie, or rather icnoraoce, ofStrabo, Pilny, Ptolemy, Arrian, Mardan, Itc. oftbecoOTi- 
nka eaicward of Cape Gonwrln, la finely illuitrated by d* Aoville (AnUquli^ Geographique dc I'lnde^ 
eapeclally p. 161—196). Our geography of India is improved by commerce aiid conqueat; and has been 
inartraced by the eiceuent maps and memoln of Major Kennei. If he extends the sphere of hb inquiika 
with the same critical kaowledse and sacaclty, he will succeed, and may surpass, the first of modem 
geographers. 

C») The Taprobane of Pliny (vt. 34), SoUnus (c 53,) and Salmas. Plinlanc EzerdtaL (p. 781 » 782,) 
and most of the ancients, who oden confound the island of Ceylon and Sumatra, Is moM dear^ 
deeeribed by Cosmas Indlcopleustes ; yet even the ChriaUan topographer has exaagerated ttsdlmensioaa. 
His iDformatioQ on the Indian and Chinese trade la rare and curious (L U. p. 138, 1. jO. p. 337, 338, edit. 
MoQtlkucon). 

(73) See Procoplas, Persic (1. 11. c. 90). Cosmas affords some ioter'^ting knowledge of the port anA 

lassriDtion of Adulis (Topograph. Christ. 1. U. p. 133. 140—143), and of the trade of the Axumites 

Iht AtHcan coast of Barbaria or Zingi (p. 138, 139), and as far as Taprobane (L xi. p. 339)* 

D 2 * 



96 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

ooinmerce to the extremities of Asia.(74) Two Persian monks bad Ioqk 
resided in China, perhaps in the royal city of Nankin, the seat of a monar(£ 
addicted to foreign superstitions, and who actually received an embassy from 
the isle of Ceylon. Amidst their pious occupations, they viewed with a curious 
eye the common dress of the Chinese, the manufactures of silki and the myriads 
of silkworms, whose education (either on trees or in houses) had once been 
considered as the labour of queens. (75) They soon discovered that it was 
impracticable to transport the short-lived insect, nut that in the eggs a numerous 
progeny miffht be preserved and multiplied in a distant climate. Religion or 
interest haamore power over the Persian monks than the love of their countiy ; 
after a long journey, they arrived at Constantinople, imparted their project to 
the emperor, and were liberally encouraged by the |;ifts and promises of Jus- 
tinian. To the historians of that prince, a campaign at the /oot of mount 
Caucasus has seemed more deserving of a minute relation than the labours of 
these missionaries of commerce, who ag'ain entered China, deceived a jealous 
peo]>le by concealing the eggs of the silkworm in a hollow cane, and returned 
m triumph with the spoils of the East. Under their direction, the eggs were 
hatched at the proper season by the artiScial heat of dung : the wcrros were 
fed with mulberry leaves : they lived and laboured in a foreign climate : a 
sufficient number of butterflies was saved to propagate the race* and trees were 
planted to supply the nourishment of the rismg generations. Experience and 
reflection corrected the errors of a new attempt, and the Sogdoite ambassadors 
acknowledged, in the succeeding reign, that the Romans were not inferior to 
the natives of China in the education of the insects, and the manufactures of 
silk,(76) in which both China and Constantinople have been surpassed by the 
industry of modern Europe. I am not insensible of the benents of elegant 
luxury ; yet I reflect with some pain, that if the importers of silk had intro- 
duced the art of printing, already practised by the Chinese, the comedies of 
Menander and the entire decades ot Livy would have been pnerpetuated in the 
editions of the sixth centuiy. A laiger view of the globe might at least have 
promoted the improvement of speculative science, but the Christian geography 
was forcibly extracted from texts of Scripture, and the study of nature was the 
surest symptom of an unbelieving mind. The orthodox faith confined the 
habitable world to one temperate zone, and represented the earth as an oblong 
surface, four hundred days* journey in length, two hundred in breadth, encom- 
passed by the ocean, and covered by the solid crjrstal of the firmament. (77) 

IV. The subjects of Justinian were dissatisfied with the government Europe 
was overrun by the Barbarians, and Asia by the monks :. the poverty of tne 
West discouraged the trade and manufactures of the East ; the produce of 
labour was consumed by the unprofitable ^rvants of the church, the state, and 
the army ; and a rapid decrease was felt hi the fixed and circulating capitals 
which con titute the national wealth. The public distress had kieen alleviated 
by the economy of Anastasius, and that prudent emperor accumulated an 
immense treasure while he delivered his people from tne most odious or op- 
pressive taxes.* Their gratitude universally applauded the abolition of the 

^4) See the Christian miariom In Indlm, la Coodm (I. iil. p. 178, 1?9, L xi. p. 337), and consult Asse* 
man. Bibliot. OrienL (torn. Iv. p. 413-^Ma) 

(75) The invention , manufacture, andgeneral use of sillt in China, may be seen in Dnhaldo (Itescrip- 
tton Genendo de la Chine, torn. U. p. 105. 905—333). Tiw province of Cfaekian is the most renowned both 
for quantity and quality. 

(76) Prooopius, I. ▼fit Gothic. Iv. c 17. Theopfaanes, Byzant apud Phot. Cod. Ixixiv. p. 38. 
Zonaras, torn. II. I. xiv. p. 89. Past (torn. U. p. 60S,) assigns to the year 538 this memorable importation. 
Menander (In Excerpt. Legal, p. 197,) mentions the admiration of the Sogdoites ; and Theophylact Eimo< 
catta (1. vll. c. 0,) darkly represents the two rival klnedoms in (Oknw) tho country of silk. 

(77) Cosmas, lumamed Indicopleustes, or the Indian navigator, performed his voyage about the year 
5St3, and composed at Alexandria, between 535 and 547, Christian tojpography (Montfaucon, Prrfat. c. 1), 
in which he reAites the impious opinion, that the earth is a ^lobe; andPhotius had read this work (Cod. 
zxxvi. p. 9, 10), which displays the pnejudiccs of a monk, with the knowledge of a merchant; the most 
valuable part has been given in French, and in Greek by Melchisedec Thevenot (Relations Curleusis, 
parti.) and the whole \m since published in a splendid edition by the Pere Montfaucon (Nova Colleciie 
Patrum, Paris, 1707, 3 vols. fol. torn. U. p. 113-446). But Uie editor, a theologian, micht blush at not 
dlsouvcrlng the Nestor! an heresy of Cosmas, which has been detected by la Croze (Chrlstlanlsiue dea 
IndM, torn. i. p. 40-56). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 37 

g9id of f^fUefUm^ a peraonal tribute on the indostiy of the poor,(78^ but more 
toleraoley as it should seem, in the fonn than in the substance, since tne flourish* 
vag citT of Edesaa paid only one hundred and forty pounds of gold, which 
was collected in four years from ten thousand artiAcers.(79) Yet such was 
the parsimony which supported this liberal disposition, that in a reign of twenty* 
seven years, Anastasius saved, from his annual revenue, the enormous sum of 
thirteen miliions sterling, or three hundred and twenty thousand pounds of 
gold. (80) His example was neglected, and his treasure was abused, by the 
nephew of Justin. The riches of Justinian were speedily exhausted by aims 
and buildings, by ambitious wars, and igpominious treaties. His revenues 
were found inadequate to his expenses. Eveiy art was tried to extort from 
the people the gold and silver which he scattered with a lavish hand front 
Persia to France ;(81) his reign was maiked by the vicissitudes, or rather by 
the combat, of rapaciousness and avarice, of splendour and poverty ; he lived 
with the reputation of hidden treasures,(82) aud bequeathed to his successor 
the payment of his debts.(83) Such a character has been justly accused hj 
the voice of the people and of posterity ; but public discontent is credulous ; 
private maliee is bold ; and a lover of truth will penise with a suspicious eye 
the instructive anecdotes of Procophis. The secret historian represents onlr 
the vices of Justinian, and those vices are darkened by his malevolent pencil. 
Ambigueos actions are msputed to the wont motives : error is confounded with 
guUt, accident with design, and laws with abuses : the partial injustice of ft 
moownt is dexterously applied as the general maxim of a re$^ of tbirty-twe 
years: the emperor alone is made responsible for the faults ofhis officers, the 
disorders of the times, and the corruption of his subjects ; and even the calami- 
ties of nature, plaeues, earthquakes, and inundations, are imputed to the prince 
of the demons, who had mischievously assumed the form of Justinian.(84) 

After this precaution, I shall briefly relate the anecdotes of avarice and rapinet 
under the following heads : I. Justinian was so profuse that he could not be 
liberal. The civil and military officers, when they were admitted into the 
ferrice of the palace, obtained an humble rank and a moderate stipend ; they 
ascended by senk>ri^ to a station of affluence and repose ; the annual pensions, 
of which the most honourable class was abolished oy Justinian, amounted to 
four hundred thousand pounds ; and this domestic economy was deplored by 
the venal or indigent courtiers as the last outrage on the ma|esty of the empire* 
The posts, the salaries of physicians, and ttw nocturnal illuminations, were 
objects of more ^neral concern ; and the cities might justly complain, that he 
iMurped the municipal revenues which had been appropriated to these useful 
institutions. Even soldiers were injured ; and such was the decay of militaty 
spirit, that they were injured with impunity. The -Abperor refused, at tfaie 
return of each fifth year, the customary donative of five pieces of sold, reduced 
his veterans to beg their bread, and suffered unpaid armies to melt away in the 
wars of Italy and Persia, il. The humanity of his predecessors had always 

(78) BvacrtiM 0- IH. c aS, 40,) Is mlmte and fnlefal, bat ugiy widi ZoflraM for ealmmitetiiig Ow 
crnt OontaotiiM. lo collecting all Uw bondp and record* of the tax, ilie humanity of Anaatailiu wm 
alHfent and artful : fluhert were sometlineB compiled to proeUtote their daa^tert (Zoeim. Hist. 1. IL e. 
SB, p. IflS, 108, Lelpslc, 17M). TlmoUieus of Oaza chose such an event Ibr the Midset of a t ra gady 
(Buidas, tom. Hi. |k 475), which eoatrlboted to the abolition of the uz (Cednaos, p. 35,)— a happf 
Instance (if It be true) of the use of the theatre. 

(79) Bee Joshua StyUtts, in the BIbUotheca OrienUHs of Assemaa (tom. L p. 908). Thta capltalkm tax 
Si ilUiUy menUoned in the Chronicle of " ' 



(fllT) Prooopius (AneodoL c. 19o fixes this sum from the report of the treasureis themselves. Tiberius 
bad vUUm UrmiUiu; biu fkr diArent was his empire from that of Anastasius. 

(81) Bvafrius 0- iv. c. 30), in the next gsneiation, was moderate and wett infbrmed; and Zonmns (L 
sir. c 81), in Uw xiiih century, had read wiUi care, and thought without pnyudica ; yet their coiouit ais 
almost as Mack as those of the Anecdotes. _ 

(Bi) Proeopius ( Anecdot. c 30,) lelaten Uw Mie eoojeotuies of the times. The death cf Jastlnlui,sq« 
tba secret historian, will expoae his wealth or poverty. 
(83) See OorippiMde Laudibus Jusdnl Aug. I. ii. 900, Jbc 364, 4bc 
^ Plurlma sunt vivo nimium necleeta Mrenti, 
Unde tot exhaostns contraxk deblta flseus.** 
Ctmsnartes of gold were brought by strong arms hito the hippodrome: 
» Deblia fsukorls persolvit, caou reoadt.'* 
CM) Tbs Aiwedolas(e. 11— 14. 1& 90-30) supply mrnqrlieli and BC 



as THE DECLINE AND FALL 

mnitted, in some auspicious circumstance of their re^n* the arrears of (Im 
public tribute j and tbey dexterously assumed the merit of resigning those 
claims which it was impracticable to enforce. ^ Justinian, in iSe space of 
thirty-two years, has never granted a similar indulgence ; and many of bis 
suly'ects have renounced the possession of those lands whose value is insufficient 
to satisfy the demands of the treasury. To the cities which bad suffered by 
hostile inroads, Anastasius promised a general exemption of seven years: toe 
provinces'of Justinian have oeen ravaged by the Persians and Arabs, the Huns 
and Sclavonians ; but his vain and ridiculous dispensation of a single Tear has 
been confined to those places which were actually taken by the enem^." Such 
IS the language of the secret historian, who expressly denies (hat any indulgence 
was granted to Palestine after the revolt of the Samaritans : a false and odious 
charj^, confuted by the authentic record, which attests a relief of thirteen cen- 
tenaries of gold (fiily-two thousand pounds) obtained for that desolate province 
fay tbe^intercession of St. Sabas.(85) IlL Procopius has not condescended to 
explain the system of taxation, which fell like a hail-storm upon the land, like 
a devouring pestilence on its inhabitants : but we should become the accom- 
plices of his malignity, if we imputed to Justinian alone the ancient though 
ngorous principle, that a whole district should be condemned to sustain the 
partial loss of the jpersons or property of individuals. The j9nofia, or suppljr oi 
com for the use ot the army and capital, was a grievous and arbitrary exaction, 
which exceeded perhaps in a tenfold proportion, the ability of the farmer : and 
his distress was aggravated by the partial injustice of weia^hts and measures, 
and the expense and labour ot distant carriage. In a time of scarcity, an extra:- 
ordinaiy requisition was made to the adjacent provinces of Thrace, Bilhynia, 
and Pbiygia ; but the proprietors, after a wearisome journey and perilous navi* 
gation, received so inadejquate a compensation, that they would have chosen 
the alternative of delivering both the com and price at the doors of their gra- 
naries. These precautions might indicate a tender solicitude for the welfare of 
the capital ; yet Constantinople did not escape the rapacious despotism of Jus- 
tiuian. Till his reign, the straits of the Bosphorus and Hellespont were open 
to the freedom of trade, and nothing was prohibited except the expOTtation of 
arms for the service of the Barbarians. At each of the gates of the city, a prae- 
tor was stationed, the minister of imperial avarice : heavy customs were im- 
posed on the vessels and their merchandise : the oppression was retaliated on 
the helpless consumer : the poor were afflicted by the artificial scarcity and 
exorbitant price of the iharket ; and a people accustomed to depend on the 
liberality ot their prince, might sometimes complain of the deficiency of water 
and bread.(86) The arial tribute, without a name, a law, or a definite object, 
was an annual gift 6f one hundred and twenty thousand pounds, which the em- 
peror accepted from his pnetorian prefect ; and the means of payment were 
abandoned to the discretion of that powerful magistrate. IV. Even such a tax 
was less intolerable than the privilege of monopolies,* which checked the fair 
competition of industry, and for the sake of a small and dishonest gain, imposed 
an arbitrary burthen on the wants and luxury of the subject* " As soon (f tran- 
scribe the anecdotes) as the exclusive sale of silk was usurped by the imperial 
treasurer, a whole people, the manufacturers of Tyre and Bery tus, was reduced 
to extreme inisrry, and either perished with hunger, or fled to the hostile do 
minions of Pema." A province might suffer by the decay of its manufactures, 
but in this example of silk, Procopius has partially overlooked the inestimable 
and lastin^^ benefit which the empire received from the curiosity of Justinian. 
His addition of one-seventh to the ordinary price of copper money may be 
interpreted with the same candour; and the alteration, which might be wise, 
appears to have been innocent ; since he neither alloyed the purity, nor en- 

(85) One to Seythopolli. capital of the weond PaleslUie, and twelve for tlie reel of the province. AW 
man. (p. 50.) honesUy produces this Itet from a M& Ufe of SU Sabas, by faia diaclple Cyril, in Uie VaUcaa 
lll»rary. and since putltehed by Coieleriua. 

<8S) John Bf alAla (tooi. ii. p. 938,) mentions the want of bread, and Zooaras (I. zlv. p, 63), tbn leadea 
plpeii which Justinian, or his sarvaaiii nolo fkom the aauaducta 



OF THE ROMAN EMPTRE. 39 

4btticed the value, of the g^ld coin,(87) the I^al measure of public and private 
fKiyments. V. The ample jurisdiction required by the farmers of the revenue 
^to accomplish their eng^agements, might be placed in an odious liffht, as if thej 
4uid purchased from the emperor the lives and fortunes of their fellow-citizens. 
And a more direct sale of honours and office^ was transacted in the palace, with 
the permissiod, or at least with the connivance, of Justinian and Theodora. 
The claims of merit, even those of favour, were disregarded, and it was almost 
reasonable to expect, that the bold adventurer, who had undertaken the trade of 
<a magistrate, should find a rich compensation for infainj, labour, dan&[er, the 
debts which be had contracted, and the heavj interest which he paid. A sense 
of the disgrace and mischief of this venal practice, at length awakened the 
-dmnberine virtue of Justinian ; and he attempted, by the sanction of oatbs(88) 
and penalties, to |;uard the integrity of his government : but at the end of a 
year of peijuiy, his rigorous edict was suspended, and corruption licentiously 
abused her triumph over the impotence of the laws. VJ. The testament of 
Eiilaliust count of the domestics, declared the emperor hb sole heir, on condi- 
tion however, that he should discharge his debts and legacies, allow to his three 
•dau^ten a decent maintenance, and bestow each of them in marriage, with a 
portion of ten pounds of gold. But the splendid fortune of Eulalius had been 
-consumed by nre ; and the inventory of nis goods did not exceed the trifling 
sum of five hundred and sixty-four pieces of gold. A similar instance, in Gre- 
•cian lustory, admonished the emperor of the honourable part prescribed for his 
imitation. He checked the selfish murmurs of the treasury, applauded the con- 
fidence of his friend, discharged the l^cies and debts, eaucated the three 
virgins under the eye of the empress Theodora, and doubled the marriage 
portion which had satisfied the tenderness of their father.(89) The humanity 
-of a prince (for princes cannot be generous) is entitled to some praise ; ^ et 
•oven m this act ol virtue we may discover the inveterate custom of supplanting 
the legal or natural heirs, which Procopius imputes to the reign of Justinian. 
His chaige is supported by eminent names and scandalous examples : neither 
widows nor orphans were spared : and the art of soliciting, or extortinr, or 
•supposing testaoients, was beneficially practised by the agents of the palace. 
This base and mischievous tyranny invades the securitjr of private life ; and 
>the monarch who has indulged an appetite for gain will soon be tempted to 
•anticipate the moment of succession, to interpret wealth as an evidence of guilt* 
and to proceed, from the claim of inheritance, to the power of confiscation. 
VII. Among the forms of rapine, a philosopher may be permitted to name the 
conversion of pagan or heretical riches to the use of the faithful ; but in the time 
•of Justinian, this holy plunder was condemned by the sectaries alone, who be- 
K^ame the victims of his orthodox avarice. (90) 

Dishonour mieht be ultimately reflected on the character of Justinian; but 
much of the niilt, and still more of the profit, was intercepted bv the ministers, 
who were seldom promoted for their virtues, and not always selected for their 
talents.(9l) The merits of Tribonian the qusestor will hereafter be weighed 
in the refonnation of the Roman law ; but the economy of the East was subor- 
dinate to the praetorian prsefect, and Procopius has justified his anecdotes bv the 
.portrait which he exposes in his public history, of the notorious vices of John of 

(87) For an suroas, one-sixth of an ounce of (Old, Instead of 210, he gave no more than 180 fidlea or 
of copper. A disproporUon of the mint, below the marlcet price, must have soon produced a 



■eareity of small money. In England. tweio« pence in copper would sell for no more than »even neoea 
(Smith's Inquiry Into the wealth of Nations, vol. 1. p. 49). For JttsliBian*s gold coin, see Evagrhia (L 
It. C.30). 

(a^ The oath Is conceived in the most formidable words (NoveU. vill. tit 3). The defliulters impr*- 
ca.*9 <m themselves, quicquid habent telorum armamentaria cobU: the part of Judas, the Iqirosyof Obesl, 
'the nvmor of Cain, &e. besides all temporal pains. 

(89*^ A similar or more generous act of friendship Is related by Ludan of Eudamidas of Corinth (bi 
Toizar t, o* 32, S3, torn. IL p. 530), and the story has produced an ingenious, though feeble comedy of 

(BO) iohn Malala, torn. li. p. 101, 102, lOaL 

(91) t^ne of these, .\naiolius, perished in an earthqnalce— doubtless a Judgment I The oomplilntBaad 
^tmowtM of the people in Agathias (I. ▼. p. 140, 147,) ara almost an echo of the anecdote. The attBB» 
ieemila reddeada of Corippus (1. U- 381, 4fcc) Is not very hnwooraUe to JustiaiaB*s memory 



40 TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

Cappadocia.(92)* His knowledge la not borrowed from the 8chool8y(9S) uaon 
his style was scarcely leg^ible ; but be excelled in the powers of native genius^ 
to su^^st the wisest counsels, and to find expedients in the most desperate 
situations. The corruption of bis heart was equal to the vigour of his under- 
standing. Although he was suspected of m^ic and pagan superstition, be 
appeared insensible to the fear of God or the reproaches of man ;'ana bis aspini^ 
fortune was raised on the death of thousands, the poverty of millions, the ruin 
of cities, and the desolation of provinces. From the da wo of light to the mo- 
ment of dinner, he assiduously laboured to enrich his master and himself at the 
expense of the Roman world ; the remainder of the day was spent in sensual 
and obscene pleasure&^and the silent hours of the night were interrupted hf 
the perpetual dread ot the justice of an assassin. His abilities, perhaps bts 
vices, recommended him to the lasting friendship of Justinian : the emperor 
Yielded with reluctance to the fury of the people ; his victory was displayed 
by the immediate restoration of their enemy; and they felt above ten yean^. 
under his oppressive administration, that be was stimulated by revenge, rather 
than instructed by misfortune. Their murmurs served only to fortify the reso- 
lution of Justipian ; but the pnefect, in the insolence of favour, provoked the 
resentment of Theodora, disaaioed a power before which erery knee was bent,, 
and attempted to sow the seeds of discord between the empercM- and his beloved 
consort. Even Theodora herself was constrained to dissemble^ to wait a favoui* 
able moment, and, by an artful conspiracy, to render John of Cappadocia the 
accomplice of his own destruction.* At the time when Belisarius, unlets he 
had been a hero, must have shown himself a rebel, his wife Antonina, who 
eqjoyed the secret confidence of the empress, communicated his feigned disooii- 
tent to Euphemia, the daughter of the pneiect ; the credulous virgin iropaited 
to her fatner the daiigerous project, and John, who might have known the 
value of oaths and promises, was tempted to accept a nocturnal, and almost 
treasonable, interview with the wife of Belisarius. An ambuscade of gyards- 
and eunuchs had^een posted bjr the command of Theodora ; they ruabd with 
drawn swords to seize or punish the guilty minister ; he was saved by the 
fidelit}r of his attendants ; but instead of appealing to a gracious sovereign, wfaa 
had privately warned him of his dagger, he pusillanimously fled to the sanctuary 
of the churcL The favourite of Justinian was sacrificed to conjugal tendemeas 
or domestic tranquillity ; the conversion of a pnefect into a i>nest extinguished 
bis ambitious hopes ; out the friendship of the emperor alleviated his dia^oe 
and he retained m the mild exile of Cyzicus an ample portion of his nchea 
Such imperfect revenge could not satisfy the unrelenting hatred of Theodora ,. 
the murder of his old enemy, the bishop of Cyzicus, afibrded a decent pretence ; 
and John of Cappadocia, whose actions baa deserved a thousand deaths, wa» 
at last condemned for a crime of which he was innocent. A great minister^ 
who had been invested with the honours of consul and patrician, was ignomi- 
niously scourged like the vilest of malefactors ; a tattered cloak was the sole 
remnant of his fortunes ; be was transported in a bark to the place of his banish- 
ment at Antinopolis in Upper Egypt, and the pnefect of toe East begged his 
bread through Ibe cities which had trembled at his name. During an exile of 
seven years, his life was protracted and threatened by the ingenious cnielty qf 
Theodora ; and when her dealh permitted the emperor to recall a servant 
whom he had abandoned with regret, the ambition of John of Cappadocia was 
reduced to the bumble duties of the sacerdotal profession. His successors con- 
yinced the subjects of Justira'an, that the arts ot oppression might still be im- 

S roved by experience and industry : the frauds of^ a Syrian banker were intro-^ 
uced into the administration of the finances ; and the example of the pnefect 
was diligently copied by the qusestor, the public and private treasurer, 

(K) See the histmy and ehaneter of John of Cappiidocia In Prooopfaia (Peralc. 1. 1, e. 94, 9S, L U. c 30, 
Vandal. 1. 1. c. 13, Anecdou c 3. 17. 8S). The afroeiiMnt of Um hlaloiy and aaccdoCM is a moital wwuA^ 
Id Uie reputation of Uia {Mrvfeet. 

^ (W) Ov yap aX>» uStv tf ypaiM^n^n ^rw spuiBw tt n yp«#i^T«, nu T«wni «uw Mcwf rpW^ -•• 
tedUaexpreakni. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 4% 

Ihe i^vernois of provinces, and the principal magistrates of the Eastero- 
einpire.(94) 

v. The td^Uu of Justinian were cemented with the blood and treasure of 
his people, but those stately structures appeared to announce the prosperity 6f 
the empire, and actually displayed the skill of their architects. Both the 
theory and practice of the arts, which depend on mathematical science and 
mechanical power, were cultivated under the patronage of the emperor; the 
fame of Archimiedes was rivalled by Proclus add Anthemius ; and if their 
ndraehs had been related by intelligent spectators, they might now enlai^e the 
speculations, instead of exciting the distrust of philosophers. A tradition has 
prevailed, that the Roman fleet was reduced to ashes m the port of Syracuse 
by the burning-glasses of Archimedes ;(^96) and it is asserted, that a similar 
expedient was employed by Proclus to destroy the Gothic vessels in the har- 
bour of Constantinople, and to protect his benefactor Anastasius against the 
bold enterprise of Vitalian.(96) A machine was fixed on the walls of the city» 
consbting of a hexagon mirror of polished brass, with many smaller and 
moveable polygons to receive and reflect the rays of the meridian sun ; and a 
eonsuming flame was darted, to the distance, pernaps, of two hundred feet.(97y 
The truth of these two extraordinary facts is invalidated by the silence of the 
ttiost authentic historians : and the use of burning-glasses was never adopted ia 
the attack or defence of place8.(98) Yet the admirable experiments of a 
-Fiench philosopherf 99) have demonstrated the possibility of such a mirror ;. 
and, since it is possible, I am more disi>osed to attribute the art to the greatest 
mathematicians of antiquity, than to give the merit of the fiction to the idle 
fancy of a monk or a sophist. Accoraine to another stoiy, Proclus applied 
nilpnur to the destruction of the Gothic fleet jOOO) in a modem imagination^ 
the name of sulphur is instantly connected with the suspicion of ^npowder^ 
and that suspicion is propagated by the secret arts ot his disciple Anthe* 
mius.(lOl) A citizen of Tralles in Asia had ^ve sons, who were all distin- 
guished in their respective professions by merit and success. Olympiuflh 
excelled in the knowledge ana practice of the Roman jurisprudence. Dios- 
oorus and Alexander became learned physicians ; but the skill of the former 
was exercised for the benefit of his feftow-citizens, while his more ambitious 
brother acquired wealth and reputation at Rome. The fame of Metrodorus^ 
the grammarian, and of Anthemius, the mathematician and architect, reached 
the ears of the emperor Justinian, who invited them to Constantinople ; and 
while the one instructed the rising generation in the schools of eloquence, the 
other filled the capital and provinces with more lasting monuments of his art.. 
In a trifling dispute, relative to the walls or windows of their contiguous 
lioiises, he had been vanquished by the eloquence of his neighbour Zeno ; but 

OM) The dinNMlofjr of Procopfot is Ioom uid otoeura; bat wiih the tld of Paft, I can dlMem thtt- 
Jolu WM appointed praiorian pnefeet of the Bant in ibe year SaO; tlMt lie was laoMVod ia Jannanr 
Sas— rettoicd beforo Jone 53»-Wiiilmi in Ml— and rtScaUfd between June 548 and April 1, M8, Ala^ 
■Mm. (p. 6S, 97), givae tbe list of his ten sttcoeasora— a rapid series in a part of a single reign.* 

(9S) This conflagraUon is hinted by Lucian (in Hippia, e. 3), and Galen (I. iii. de temperamenUs, tonit. 
1. pL 81, adiL Basil), in the second oentory. A thousand years aAerwaid, It is positively afflrmed by Zo- 
■aras U. Ix. p. 434), on the faith of Dim Css«las, by Txetxes (CUUad U. 119, 4e.), Sustaihios (ad Iliai. 
E. p. 98), and the scholiast of Locian. See Fabrklus (BIbUot Onse. 1. iti. c 93, lom. U. p. 551, 538), t» 
whom I am more or less indebted for several of those quotations. 

egg) 2^naras (i. xlv. p. 55,) affirms the fact, without quoting any evidence. 

(97) Tzetxes describes the artifice of these burning glasses, which he had read, perhaps with no learned 
ayest in a mathematical treatise of Anthemius. That treatise, mot itapaUiiw lurxfivn^rw*^ bu besn 
lately published, translated, and Uhistrated, by M. Dupuyi, a sehotar aad msthemsiirlsn (Memoires da 
r Acawmie des Inscriptions, torn. xlil. p. 393—451). 

(W) In the sieae of Syracuse, by the silence of Polybiua, Phitarch, Livy ; to the siege of Coosiantlno- 
pl^by that of llaroellinus and all the oodemporaFies of tbe sixth oentury. 

010) Without any previous knowledge of Txetzes or Anthemius, tbe Immortal Bnllbn imagined and 
a»ecoted a set of buraing-gissses, with whieh he oould inflame planks at the disiaaee of 900 feet (8tf]p* 
alement * PHisL Naiurelle, torn. I. p^ 389-483, quarto edition). What miracles would not his penius 
liave performed for tbe public service, with royal expense, and In the Strang aun of ConsianUnople of 
Syracuse 1 

(100) JohnMalala((oai.U.p. 190-191,) relates thalhe^-but he seena to ooofitwMl Uie names or per- 
sons of Proclus and Marinas. 

(101) Agathias, 1. v. p. 14»-1SB. The merit of AnUiemlus as an architect to hradly pralmd by Piuc^ 
plas (da Siif. 1. i. c. 1), and PaataM SUentiarioa '.pw* 1. 134, Ice.) 



4S THE DECLINE AND FALL 

4be orator was defeated in his tuni by the master of mechanics, whoeemaliciouSy 
though harmless, stratagems, are darkly represented by the ignorance of Aga 
tbia8« In a lower room, Anthemius arranged several Teasels or cauldrons of 
-water, each of them covered by the wide bottom of a leathern tube, which 
rose to a nairow top, and was artificially conveyed among the joists and rafteri 
4>f the adjacent building. ' A fire was kmdled beneath the cauldron ; the steam 
of the boiling water ascended through the tubes : the house was shaken by the 
eiSbrts of imprisoned air, and its trembline^ inhabitants might wonder that the 
•city was uixx>nscious of the earthquake which they bad felt. At another time, 
4he friends of Zeno, as they sat at table, were dazzled by the intolerable light 
which flashed in their eyes from the reflecting mirrors of Anthemius ; i&j 
were astonished by the noise which he produced from a collision of certain 
minute and sonorous particles ; and the orator declared in tragic style to the 
senate, that a mere mortal must yield to the power of an antasqnist, who 
shook the earth with the trident of Neptune, and imitated the thunder and 
lightniiie of Jove himself. The genius of Anthemius and his colleague Isidore, 
tTO Milesian, was excited and employed by a prince, whose taste for archi- 
^cture had degenerated into a mischievous and costly passion. His favourite 
architects submitted their designs and difficulties to Justinian, and discreetly 
confessed how much their laborious meditations were surpassed by the intuitive 
Iknowledge or celestial inspiration of an emperor, whose views were always 
directed to the benefit of his people, the gloiy of his reign, and the salvation 
of his soul.(l02^ 

The principal church, which was dedicated by the founder of Constantinople 
4o St. Sophia, or the eternal wisdom,' had been twice destroyed by fire ; alter 
the exile of John Chiysostom, and durii^ the JSPUea of the blue and green 
Tactions. No sooner did the tumult su&ide, than the Christian populace 
deplored their sacrilegious rashness; but they might have rejoiced in the 
calamity, had they foreseen the glory of the new temple, which at the end of 
ibrty days was strenuously undertaken by the piety jof Justinian. (103) The 
ruins were cleared away, a more spacious plan was described, and as it 
j^quired the consent of some proprietors of ground, they obtained the most 
exorbitant terms from the eager desires and timorous conscience of the monarch. 
Anthemius formed the design, and his genius directed the hands of ten thou- 
sand workmen, whose payment in pieces of fine silver was never delayed 
^beyond the evening. Tbe emperor himself, clad in a linen tunic, surveyed each 
day their rapid progress, and encouraged their diligence by his familiarity, his 
zeal, and his rewards. The new catnedral of St. Sophia was consecrated by 
the patriach, five years, eleven months, and ten days,lrom the first foundation; 
and in the midst of the solemn festival, Justinian exclaimed with devout vanity, 
'•'Glory be to God, who hath thought me worthy to accomplish so great a 
work ; I have vanquished thee, O Solomon !'*( L04) But the pride of the 
■Roman Solomon, before twenty years bad elapsea, was humbled by an earth- 
quake, which overthrew the eastern part of the dome. Its splendour was again 

(109) See Proooptw (de EdiflcUs, I. i. c 1, 3, I. ii. c. 3). He relatea m colneldenoe of dre&ns, tt'bidi 
Mppoeea Mane fhiud In JoMinian or hlf architect. They botb aew, in a vision, the same plan for slop- 
ing an Inundation at Dara. A stone qaarrj near Jenisalem was revealed to the emperor (I. ▼. c. 6) : an 
angel was tricked into the perpetual custody of BL Sophia (Anonym, de Aniiq. C. P. 1. Iv. p. 70). 

(103} Among the crowd of andenu and modema who have celebrated the edifice of St Sophia, Z 
«ball distinguish and follow, I. Four orighial spectators and historians: Procopius (de Edifie. 1. 1. c. 1), 
Agathlas (1. v. p. 198, 153^, Paul Silentiarius (in a poem of 1096 hexameters, ad calcem Anne Comnen. 
AlexiadO and Evagrlus (I. Iv. c 31). S. Two legendary Greeks of a later period: George Oodlnoi (de 
Origin. C. P. p. 64—74), and the anonymous writer of Bandurl (Imp. Orient, tom. i. 1. iv. n. 65— SC' . 3. 
The great Byzantine antiquarian, Ducange (Comment ad Paul Sflentiar. p. SSS-fiOS, and C. P. Christ. 
I. iii. p. 5—78). 4. Two French travellers— the one Peter Gyllhis (de Topograph. C. P. I. 11. c. 3, 4), in 



4. Two French travellers— the one Peter Gyllhis (de Topograph. C. P. I. ii. c. 3, 4), in 
^««, — », «... other, Greloi (Voyaie de C. P. p. 05—164. Paris, 1680, in 4to.) : he has given plan, 
INOspects, and Inside views Of St Sophia ; and his plans, though on a nnaller scale, appear moie cornet 
than those of Ducange. I have adopted and reduced the measures of Grelot : but as no Cbriaiian can 
^ow a«cend the dome, the height is borrowed from Evagriuis compared with GylUua, Greaves, and Uie 
OrientaiGeographer. * — » -i 

r stradnreof the 
) feet In height, 
, vol. i. p. 144. 




OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 45 

testored by the perseverance of the same prince ; and in the thirty-sixth year 
of bis reient Justinian celebrated the second dedication of a teQipIe, which 
Kmains alter twelve centuries, a stately monument of his fame. The archi- 
tecture of St. Sophia, which is now converted into the Dnncipal mosgue, has 
been imitated by the Turkish Sultans, and that venerable pile continues to 
«zcite the fond admiration of the Greeks, and the more rational curiosity of 
European travellers. The eye of the spectator is disappointed by an irregular 
prospect of half-domes, and shelving roofs : the western front, the principal 
approach, is destitute of simplicity and magnificence ; and the scale of dimen- 
sions has been much surpassed by several of the Latin cathedrals. But the 
architect who first erected an arial cupola, is entitled to the praise of bold 
design and skilful execution. The dome of St. Sophia, illuminated by four 
and twenty windows, is formed with so small a curve, that the depth is equal 
only to one-sixth of its diameter ; the measure of that diameter is one hundred 
and fifteen feet, and the lofty centre, where a crescent has supplanted the cross, 
rises to the perpendicular height of one hundred and eighty feet above the 
pavement The circle which encompasses the dome, lightly reposes on 
lour strong arches, and their weight is brmly supported by four massy piles, 
ivhose strength is assisted on the northern and southern sides by four columns 
of Egyptian nanite. A Greek cross, inscribed in a Quadrangle, represents the 
ibrm of the edifice ] the exact breadth is two hundred and forty-thiee feet, and 
two hundred and ^ixty-nine may be assigned for the extreme length froin the 
sanctuary in the east to the nine western doors which open into the vestibule, 
and from thence into the nartkex or exterior portico. /That portico was the 
humble station of the penitents. The nave or body of the church was filled 
by the congregation of the faithful ; but the two sexes were prudently distin- 

fuished, and Uie upper and lower galleries were allotted for the more private 
evotion of the women. Beyond the northern and southern piles, a balustrade, 
terminated on either side by the thrones of the emperor and the patriarch, 
divided the nave from the choir ; and the space, as far as the steps of the altar, 
was occupied by the cleigy and silvers. The altar itself, a name which 
insensibly became familiar to Christian ears, ^as placed in the eastern recess, 
artificially built in the form of a demi-cy Under ; and this sanctuary communi- 
cated by several doors with the sacrbty, the vestiy, the baptistery, and the 
4:ontiguous buildir^gs, subservient either to the pomp of worship, or the private 
use of the ecclesiastical ministers. The memoiy of past calamities inspired 
Justinian with a wise resolution, that no wood, except lor the doors, should be 
admitted into the new edifice : and the choice of the materials was appHed to 
the strenf^th, the lightness, or tne splendour of the respective parts. The solid 
piles which sustained the cupola were composed of huge blocks of freestone, 
Lewn into squares and triaqgles, fortified by circles of iron, and firmly cemented 
by the infusion of lead and quicklime : but the weight of the cuf>o]a was 
diminished by the levity of its substance, which consists either of pumice-stone 
that fioats in the water, or of bricks from the isle of Rhodes, five times less 
ponderous than the ordinary sort. The whole frame of the edifice was con- 
structed of brick ; but those base materials were concealed by a crust of mar- 
ble ; and the inside of St. Sophia, the cupola, the two lai^cr, and the six 
smaller, semi-domes, the walls, the hundred columns, and the pavement, 
delight ev^ the eyes of Barbarians, with a rich and variegated picture. A 
poet,(l05) who beheld the primitive lustre of St. Sophia, enumerates the 
colours, the shades, and the spots of ten or twelve marbles, jaspers, and por- 
phyries, which nature had profusely diversified, and which were blended and 

(105) Paul BUentlarliM, la dark and poetic lanfuage, describes the Tarioua stonea and marbles that 
irers employed In the edifice of St. Sophia (P. it. p. 15K). 133, Itc Btc.): 1. The Carjrfttm— pale, with 
Iron veins. S. The PkrpgioM— of two aoris, both of a rosy hne ; the one with a white shade, tlie other 
jMuple, with silver flowers. 3. The Ponkfrf of Egmt—wlth small stars. 4. The grem marUt •/ 
Z^emti*. i. The Carim—from Mount lassis, with oblique veins, white and red. 6. The Jj^am.-^ 
Bale. ¥rith a red flower. 7. The African^ or Jraaritem'sn— of a gold or Raffron hue. 8. The GsMe— 
Hack, with white veins. 9. The Bospkoric-^lAva^ with black edges. Besides the FrocMMMan, wbMf 
Cbrned tlie pavement ; the TkutaUont^ MaUttiant ite. Which aie km dlstloctiy pointed 



44 TU£ DECLINE AND FALF. 

contrasted, as it Tvere, by a skilful painter. The triumph of Christ was 
adorned with the last spoils of paganism, but the g^reater part of these costly 
stones was extracted from the quarries of Asia Minor, the isles and continent of 
Greece, Egypt, Africa, and Gaul. Eight columns of porphyiy, which Aurelian 



had placed in the temple of the sun, were offered by the piety of a Roman 
matron ; eight others of green marble were presented oy the ambitious zeal of 
the magistrates of Ephesus : both are admirable by their size and beauty, but 
eveiy order of architecture disclaims their fantastic capitals. A variety of 
ornaments and 6|^res were curiously expressed in Mosaic ; and the images of 
Christ, of the Virgin, of saints, and of angels, which have been defaced by 
Turkish fanaticism, were dangerousljr exposed to the superstition of the Greeks. 
According to the sanctity of each object, the precious metals were distributed 
in thin leaves, or in solid masses. The balustrade of the chonr, the capitals of 
the pillars, the ornaments of the doors and galleries, were of gilt bronze ; the 
spectator was dazzled by the glittering aspect of the cupola ; the sanctuary 
contained forty thousand pounds weight of silver ; and .the holy vases and 
vestments of the altar were of the purest gold, enriched with inestimable 
gems. Before the structure of the cnurch bad risen two cubits above the 
ground, forty-five thousand two hundred pounds were already consumed ; and 
vbt whole expense amounted to three hundred and twenty thousand: eacb 
reader, according to the measure of his belief, ma^ estimate their value either 
in gdd or silver ; but the sum of one million sterling is the result of the lowest 
computation. A magnificent temple is a laudable monument of national taste 
and religion, and the enthusiast who entered the dome of St. Sophia might be 
tempted to suppose that it was the residence, or even the workmanship of the 
Deity. Yet how dull is the artifice, how insignificant is 'the labour, if it be 
compared with the formation of the vilest insect that crawls upon the surface 
of the temple ! 

So minute a description of an edifice which time has respected, may attest 
ibe truth, and excuse the relation of the innumerable works, both in the capital 
and provinces, which Justinian constructed on a smaller scale and less durable 
foundat]ons.(106) In Constantinople alone, and the adjacent suburbs, he dedi- 
cated twenty-five churches to the honour of Christ, the Viisin, and the saints i 
most of these churehes were decorated with marble and gold ; and their various 
situation was skilfully chosen in a populous square, or a pleasant grove ; on the 
margin of the sea-shore, or on some lofty eminence which overlooked the con* 
tinents of Europe and Asia. The church of the Holy Apostles at Constanti*> 
nople, and that of St. John at Ephesus, appear to have been framed on the 
fame model : their domes aspire to imitate the cupolas "of St. Sophia ; but the 
altar was more judiciously placed under the centre of the dome, at the junction 
of four statefy porticoes, which more accurately expressed the figure of the 
Greek cross. The Virgin of Jerusalem might exult in the temple erected by 
her imperial votaiy on a most ungrateful spot, which afforded neither ground 
nor materials to tne architect. A level was formed, by raising part of a deep- 
valley to the height of the mountain. The stones of a neighoouring quarry 
were hewn into regular forms ; each block was fixed on a peculiar carriage 
drawn by forty of the strongest oxen, and the roads were widened for the 
passa^ of such enormous weights. Lebanon furnished her loftiest cedars for 
the timbers of the church ; and the seasonable discovery of a vein of red 
marble, supplied its beautiful columns, two of which, the supporters of the 
exterior portico, were esteemed the largest in the worid. The pious muni- 
ficence of the emperor was diffused over the Holy Land : and if reason should 
condemn the monasteries of both sexes which were built or restored by Justi- 
nian, yet charity must applaud the wells which he sunk, and the hospitals whicb 

(106) The rfz booka of the Edifices of ProcoDiai are thus dktrlbated ; thejhrtt ta confined to Conitaa^ 
tinople ; Uie §send include! Meeopouunla mnd Syria; Uie OiW Armenia and Uie Euxine; the fbttrth- 
Baiope ; Uie jEfU Asia Minor and Pale«ine ; Uw nztk Gcypt and AfVlca. Italy is fotiotten by the em- 
peror or Uie hieiorian, wlio pubUafaed tiiia work of adulaiion before Uie date (A D. 555|) of Its fioa. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 45 

be founded for Che relief of the weary pilgrims. The scbismatical temper of 
Egypt was ill entitled to the rojal bounty ; but in Syria and Africa some 
remedies were applied to the disasters of war and earthquakes, and both 
Carthage and Antioch, eraeiging from their ruins» might revere the name of 
their gracious benefactor. (107) Almost every saint m the calendar acquired 
the honours of a temple ; almost eveiy city of the empire obtained the solid 
Advantages of bridges, hospitals, and aaueducts ; but the severe liberality of 
the monarch disdained to indulge his subjects in the popular luxury of baths 
and theatres. While Justinian laboured for the public service, he was not un- 
mindful of bis own dignity and ease. The Byzantine palace, which had been 
damaged by the conflagration, was restored with new magnificence ; and some 
ootioo may be conceived of the whole edifice, by the vestibule or hall, which, 
from the doors perhaps, or the roof, was surnamed chaleef or the brazen. The 
dome of a spacious quadrangle was supported by massy pillars ; the pavement 
and walls were incrusted with many-coloured marbles — the emerald green of 
Laconia, the fiery red, and the white Phrygian stone, intersected with veins of 
a sea-green hue : the Mosaic painting of the dome and sides representing the 
glories of the African and Italian triumphs. On the Asiatic shore of the rro- 
pontis, at a small distance to the east of Chalcedon, the costly palace and 
gardens of Herseum^lQS^ were prepared for the summer residence of Justinian, 
and more especially of Theodora. The poets of the age have celebrated the 
rare alliance of nature and art, the harmony of the nymphs of the sproves, the 
fountains, and the waves ; yet the crowd of attendants who followed the court 
complained of their .inconvenient lodgiiie^s,(l09) and the nymphs were too often 
alarmed by the famous Porphyrio, a whale of ten cubits in breadth, and thirty 
in length, who was stranded at the mouth of the river Sangaris, after he had 
infested, more than lialf a century, the seas of Constantinople.(llO) 

The fortifications of Europe and Asia were multiplied by Justinian; but the 
repetition of those timid and fruitless precautions exposes to a philosophic eye 
the debility of the empire.Clll) From Belgrade to the Euxine, from the con- 
flux of the Save to the mouth ot the Danube, a chain of above fourscore fortified 
places was extended along the banks of the great river. Single watchtowers 
were changed into spacious citadels ; vacant walls, which the engineers con- 
tracted or enlarged according to the nature of the j;round, were filled with 
colonies or garrisons ; a strong fortress defended the ruins of Trajan's 
bridge,( 112) and several military stations affected to spread beyond tbe Danube 
the pride ot the Roman name. But that name was divested of its terrors^ the 
Barbarians, in their annual inroads, passed, and contemptuously repassed, before 
these useless bulwarks ; and the inhabitants of the frontier, instead of reposing 
under the shadow of the general defence, were compelled to guard, with 
incessant vigilance, their separate habitations. The solitude of ancient cities 
was replenished; the new foundations of Justinian acquired, perhaps too 
hastily, the epithets of impregnable and populous ; and the auspicious place of 

OffT) JuBtinSan once gave (brty-flve ceatenariee of gold (jCISOjOOO), Ibr the re|»ain of Antioeh after the 
earUiquake (John Malala, ton. IL pi 14S— 14^. 

iV»i For the Henroai, Uie pilaeeof Theodora, eee GyUint (de Boepboco Thraeio, 1. Ui. e. zi.), Alemon. 
(NoL ad. Anecdoc p. 80, 61, who quolet leveral eplgcaiiui of tbe Anthology), and Ducango (C. P. Christ. 
].It. e. 13, p. 175,170;. 

(109) Ck>nipare, In the Edillcee (}• I. e 11), and fn the Anecdotes (e. 8. 15), the dllftrent stylet of 
adulation and malevolence: stripped of the paint, or cleansed from the dirt, the object appears to be ttie 
eeme. 

(110) Procopia8,Lvtfl.39; most probably a stranger and wanderer, as the Mediterranean does not 
breed whales. Balanc quoque in nostra maria penetrant (Plin. Hist Natur. tz. S). Between the polar 
circle and Uie tropic, the cetaceous animals of the ocean grow to tbe length of 50, 80, or 100 feet (Hist 
dee Voyages, torn. zv. p. S80. Pennant's British Zoology, vol. ill. p. 35). 

(111) Montesqulea observes (torn. ill. p. 503. Considerations sur la Grandeur et la Decadence des 
Somains, c zz.) that Justinian's empire was like France la the time of the Norman inroads— never eo 
weak as when every village was fortified. 

(119) Proooplos afllrms (1. iv. c 6,) that the Danube was stopped by the ruins of the bridge. Had 
Apoltodoms, the Architect, left a description of his own work, the fabulous wonders of Dion Caasioa (1. 
Izvllt p. 11S9,) would have been corrected by the genuine picture. Tr^an*B bridge consisted of twenty 
or twenty-two stone piles, with wooden arches : the river is shallow, the current gentle, and the whole 
Interval no more Uiaa i43 (Eeinuur. ad Dion, ttom &IaraigU^ or 515 (eiM» (d'AnviUe Oeographie An 
ciemie, torn. 1. p. 305) . 



46 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

his own nativity attracted the {grateful reverence of the vainest of princes. 
Under the nameof /U9^tn4dfui;7nf?ia, the obscure village of Taurecium became 
the seat of an archbishop and a prsfect, whose jurisdiction extended over seven 
warlike provinces of Illyricum :(n3) and the corrupt appellation ofGitutendil 
still indicates, about twenty miles to the south of Sophia, the residence of a 
Turkish sanjak.(ll4) For the use of the emperor's countrymen, a cathedral, 
a palace, and an aqueduct, were speedily constructed : the public and private 
edifices were adapted to the e^reatiiess of a royal city ; and the strenetb of the 
walls resisted, during the liietime of Justinian, the unskilful assaults of the 
Huns and Sclavonians. Then- progress was sometimes retarded, and their 
hopes of rapine were disappointed, by the innumerable castles, which in the 
provinces ot Dacia, Epirus, Thessaly, Macedonia, and Thrace, appeared to 
cover the whole face of the countiy. Six hundred of these forts were built or 
repaired by the emperor : but it seems reasonable to believe, that the far 
greater part consisted only of a stone or brick tower, in the midst of a square 
or circular area, which was surrounded by a wall and ditch, and aflbrded in a 
moment of danger some protection to the peasants and cattle of the neighbouring 
villafi;es.(ll5) Tet these militaiy works, which exhausted the public treasure^ 
could not remove the just apprehensions of Justinian andhis European subjects. 
The warm baths of Anchiafus in Thrace were rendered as safe as they were 
salutaiy ; but the rich pastures of Thessalonica were foraged by the Scythian 
cavalry ; the delicious vale of Tempe, three hundred miles from the Danube^ 
was continually alarmed by the sound of v^ar;(116) and no unfortified spot, 
however distant or solitaiy, could securely enjoy the blessines of peace. The 
straits of Thermopylae, which seemed to protect, but which had so oftea 
betrayed, the safety of Greece, were diligently strengthened by the labours oC 
Justinian. From the edge of the sea-snore, throu^ the forests and valleys^ 
and as far as the summit of the Thessalian mountains, a strong wall was coo* 
tinned, which occupied eveiy practicable entrance. Instead ot a hasty crowd 
of peasants, a gamson of two thousand soldiers was stationed along the ram- 
part : granaries of com, and reservoirs of water, were provided for their use * 
and oy a precaution that inspired the cowardice which it foresaw, convenient 
fortresses were erected for their retreat. The walls of Corinth, overthrown by 
an earthquake, and the mouldering bulwarks of Athens and Platsea, were care- 
fulh^ restored ; the Barbarians were discounured by the prospect of successive 
ana painful sieves ; and the naked cities of Peloponnesus were covered by the 
fortifications of the isthmus of Corinth. At the extremity of Europe, another 
peninsula, the Thracian Chersonesus, runs three days' journey into the sea, to 
form, with the adjacent shores of Asia, the straits of the Hellespont. Thd 
intervals between eleven populous towns were filled by lofty woods, fair pas- 
tures, and arable lands : and the isthmus, of thirty-seven stadia or furlongs, nad 
been fortified by a Spartan general nine hundred years before the reign of 
Justinian.(117) In an age of freedom and valour, the slightest rampart may 
prevent a surprise ; and Procopius appears insensible of the superiority of 
ancient times, while he praises the solid construction and double parapet of a^ 
wall, whose long arms stretched on either side into the sea ; but whose strength 
was deemed insufficient to guard the Chersonesus, if each city, and particularly 

(113) or tbe two DaclaSf MedUerrmua and At>«wf#, Daidania, Prevalitana, Uie Moond Macsia, and 
tlM Mcond Macedonia. See Jaatinian (Novell, xi.) who apeake of tola caailee b^ond Uio Danube, and of 
homlnei leinper belllcia ludoiibae Inberentee. 

(114) See d*AnviUe (Memolree de TAcademie, ice torn. uxl. p. 989,390), Bycaut (Present Stale of the 
Torkieh Empire, p. 97. 316), Mani^i (Stato MUitare del Imperio Ottomano, p. 130). Th«t sanjak of' 
GiuMendIi is one of the twenty under the beg lerbeg of Humelia, and his dletrict maintaina 48 uiwu and' 
968 ttmarwte. 

(115) These fortiflcations may be compared to tbe casUes in M Ingrdla (Chardin, Voyages en Pent, 
torn. 1. p. 60. 131)— a natural picture. 



(116) The ▼alle^ of Tempe Is situated aktng the river Peneus, between tbe hills of Ossa and Olym- 
pos : It is only five miles Ions, and in some places no more than 190 f^t in breadth. Its verdant 
beauties are elegantly deecribed by Pliny (Hist Natur. 1. Iv. 15), and more diffusely by ^lan (Hist Var. 



L Ui. c. 1). 

(117) Xenophon Hellenic. I. 111. c. 2. AAer a long and tedioos eonvenatlon with the BysanliiM d^ 
daimers, how refireahlng is tbe truth, the simplieiij, the elegance of an Attic writer 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. AT 

Gtellipoli and Sestus, had not been secured hj their peculiar fortifications. The 
Umf vral)» as it was emohatically styled, was a work as disgraceful in the 
olgecty as it was respectable in the execution. The riches of a capital diffuse - 
themselves over the neighbouring countiy, and the territoir of Constantinople, 
a paradise of nature, was adorned with the luxurious earaens and villas of the 
senators and opulent citizens. But their wealth served only to attract the bold 
and rapacious Barbarians ; the noblest of the Romans, in the bosom of peaceful 
indolence, were led away into Scythian captivity, and their sovereign might ' 
view from his palace the hostile flames which were insolently spread to the- 
gates of the imperial city. At the distance only of forty miles, Ajtastasius was 
constrained to establish a last frontier ; his long wall of sixty miles from the- 
Propontis to the Euxine, proclaimed the im^tence df hi^ arms ; and as the 
danger became more imminent, new fortifications were added by the indefa-^ 
tigable prudence of Jostinian.(ll8) 

Asia Minor, after the submission of the Isaur]ans,(tt9) remained without 
enemies and without fortifications. Those bold savages, who had disdained* 
to be the subjects of Qallienus, persisted two hundred and thirty years in a 
life of independence and rapine. The most successful princes respected the 
strength of the mountains and the despair of the natives ; their fierce spirit was 
sometimes soothed with g^fts, and sometimes restrained by terror ; ami a mili- 
tary opurt, with three legions, fixed his permanent and ignominious station in 
the heart of the Roman piovinces.(l30) But no sooner was the vigilance of 
power relaxed or diverteo, than the light-armed squadrons descended from the 
hills, and invaded the peaceful plenty of Asia. Although the Isaurians were 
not remarkable for stature or bravery, want rendered them bold, and experience 
made them skilful in the exercise of predatoir war. They advanced with 
secrecy and speed to the attack of villages and defenceless towns ; their flying 
parties have sometimes touched the Hellespont, the Euxine, and the ptes oT 
Tarsus, Antioch, or Damascus ;(t21) and the spoil was lodged in their inacces- 
sible mountains, before the Roman troops had received their orders, or the dis* 
tant province had computed its loss. The guilt of rebellion and robbery 
excluded them finom the rights of national enemies ; and the magistrates were- 
instructed, by an edict, that the trial or punishment of an Isaurian, even on the 
festival of Easter, was a meritorious act of justice and piety .(122^ If the cap- 
tives were condemned to domestic slavery, they maintained with their sword 
or dagger, the private quarrel of their masters ; and it was found expedient for 
the public tranquillity, to prohibit the service of such dangerous retainers. 
When their countryman Tarcalisssens or Zeno ascended the throne, he invited 
a faithful and formidable band of Isaurians, who insulted the court and city, 
and were rewarded by an annual tribute of five thousand pounds of gold. But 
the hopes of fortune depopulated the mountains, luxuiy enervated the hardiness 
of their minds and bodies, and in proportion as they mixed with mankind^ 
they became less qualified for the enjoyment of poor and solitaij freedom. 
After the death of Zeno, his successor Anastasius suppressed their penstens,. 
exposed their persons to the reven^ of the people, banished them from Con- 
stantinople, and prepared to sustain a war, which left only the alternative of 
victory or servitude. A brother of the last emperor usurped the title of 
Augustus, his cause was powerfully supported by the arms, the treasures, and 
the magazines, collected oy Zeno ; ana the native Isaurians must have formed 

This whole artfde ta drawn flrom Uie fbuitli book of 

coano of Uili htaloiy, I bmve ■ohmcIoim neotkniaSi 
tiie bfturtant, which wort not attended with any con' 

(ISO) Trebelllaa Follloln Hlet Ancnet p. 107, who lived nndef Diodedan, or ConMantine. See lllm- 
wlae Paaelrolaa ad NotlL Tmo. OrlenL e. 115. 141. See Ck>d. Theodoe. L ix. Uu 3^ leg. 37, wiUi a copl- 
one eoilecllTe Annotation of Godeflroy, torn. ilt. p. 9SS, S57. 

(191) See the full and wide extent of Uieir Lnroade in PbUo«orgius (HIrt. Eoclea. I. zi. c. 8), wlUi 6od«- 
ftojr'R wanied Dienrtatlons. 

0«> Cod. JosUnlao. I. iz. tit 18, leff. 10, The punlahmenta are ievere-a fine of a hundred pound*- 
of fold, degradation, and even deaUi. The public peace might afford a pretence, but Zeno wa« deciroua-' 
•r flMooiioUabig the valoor and larvloe of the iMuuiaas. 




48 TH£ D£CLIN£ AND FALL 

the smallest portion of the hundred and fiAj thousand Barbarians under bk 
standard, which was sanctified, for the first lime, by the presence of a fightlofi 
bishop. Their disorderly numbers were vanquished in the plains of Pbiygia 
by the valour and discipline of the Goths ; but a war of six years almost 
exhausted the courage of the emperor. (123^ The Isauriaos retired to the 
mountains ; their fortresses were successively besieged and ruined ; their com- 
munication with the sea was intercepted ; the bravest of their leaders died in 
arms $ the surviving chiefs, before their execution, were drageed in chains 
through the hippodrome ; a colony of their youth was transplanted into Thrace, 
and the remnant of the people submitted to the Roman government. Yet some 

¥ derations elapsed before their minds were reduced to the level of slaveiy. 
he pof>ulous villages of Mount Taurus were filled with horsemen and archers ; 
thej resisted the imposition of tributes, but thev recruited the armies of Jus- 
'linian ; and his civil magistrates, the proconsul of Cappadocia, the count ot 
isauria, and the praetors of Lycaonia and Pisidia, were mvested with military 
power to restrain the licentious practice of rapes and assassinations.(l34) 

If we extend our view from the tropic to the mouth of the Tanais, we may 
•observe on one hand, the precautions of Justinian to curb the savages of Ethio- 
pia,(125) and on the other, the long walls which he constructed in Crimssa for 
the protection of his friendly Goths, a colony of three thousand shepherds and 
warriors.(126) From that peninsula to Trebizond, the eastern curve of the 
£uxine was secured by forts, by alliance, or by religion ; and the possession ot 
Lazicoy the Colchos of ancient, the Mingrelia of modem, geography, soon 
became the object of an important war. Trebizond, in aftertimes tne seat oi 
a romantic empire, was indented to the liberality of Justinian for a church, an 
aqueduct, and a castle, whose ditches are hewn in the solid rock. From that 
maritime city, a frontier line of ^\e hundred miles may be drawn to the for- 
tress of Circesium, the last Roman station on the Euphrates. (127) Above Tre- 
bizond immediately, and five days' journey to the south, the countiy rises into 
<lark forests and craffg;y mountains, as savage, though not so lofty, as the Alps and 
the Pyrenees. In this rigorous climate,(128) where the snows seldom melt, 
the fruits are tardy and tasteless, even honey is poisonous ; the most industrious 
tillage would be confined to some pleasant valleys ; and the pastoral tribes 
obtained a scanty sustenance from tne flesh and milk of their cattle. The 
<JhalyhianM{\2%) derived their name and temper from the iron quality of the 

(193) TlM iMvriai w«r and tiie triumph of Anuiulu ar» Mefly and darkly lepntented bf Jobn 
Malala (torn. U. p. 1U6, 107), Evegrius (1. iU. c. 35), Ttaeopl»«n« (P- IlS-li»), and Um Cliionkto of 
Blarcellinos. 

(154) FortM ea reglo (njt lutUnian) vlroi habeC, nee In olio difllirt ab baoriaf thonch Precopint (Ptr- 
ale. L 1. c IB,) marks an eMtatlal difference between tbelr mtUiaiy character; yet iaftinner Unee the 
Lycaonlani and PIsidiana had defended their liberty afainrt the great king (Xenophon, Anabarii, 1. IU. c 
9). Joailnlaa Introducoe eome fhlae and ridiculoni erudition of the ancient empire of the PMdian«, and 
of Lycaon, who alter vMUng Knme (kkog beftwe iBneaa), ga?e a name and people to Lyeaonla (NorelL 
-SM, 25.87. 30). 

(155) See Procoplns, iPeraic 1. 1. c. 19. The altar of national concord, of aanaal aacrificc and oathe, 
which DIoeleUaa bad erected In the iile of Eleptiaotlne, wee demoUabed by Juatinian with leaa poliey 
tbanaeaL 

(196) Procopiua de Edlficila, I. HI. c. 7. Htot. 1. viii. c. 3. 4. Tbeae unamblUona Cotha had refused to 
ft>l]ow the standard of Tbeodoric. Ai late aa the znh and zrlth cencoiy, the name and nation might be 
^iaooverad between Caflhaad the straita of Awpb (d*Anvl1le Memolrea de I'Academle, tom. xxz. p. 940). 
They well deaenre the curioaity of BuMtequlua (p. 991^398) ; but aeem to have vanlahed in the more 
recent accoarfTof the Miaalona du Levant (torn. 1.) ToU Peyaaonel, k.t. 

(197) For the ceography and arehlteemre of tUa Annealan bonier, aee the Penlaii Wan and EdlOcea 
(1. ii. c 4—7, 1, iil c 9-7,) of Procopiua. 

(198) The country la deacribed by Tournefort (Voyage aa Levant, torn. Hi. lettre zvii. xviii.) That 
akilful bounlst aoon discovered the plant that infecta the honey (Plin. zzl. 44, 45): he obaervea, that the 
aokUers of Lucullua might Indeed be aatoniahed at the cold, aince, even in the plain of Erzerum, snow 
aomeiimes falls in June, and the harvest la seldom finished before September. The hills of Armenia are 
below the fortieth degree of latitude; but In the mountainous countiy which I inhabit, It is well known 
thai an aacent of aomo hours carries the traveUer (Vom the climate of Languedoe to that of Norway : 
and a general theory haa been introduced, that, under the line, an elevation of 9400 (mm* is equivalent 
to the cold of the polar circle (Remond, Observatioiia sur lea Voyage de Coze dana la Suisae, tons. d. 
II. 104). 

(199) The identity or proximity of the Chalyblana, or Chaldeana, may be inveatlgated tai Strabo a 
Zil. p. 89S, 896), Cellarlua (Geogruih. Antlq. tom. U. p. 909-904), and Freiet (Mem. de I'Academie, toni. 
Iv. p. 594). Aenophon aupposea, in hia romance (CyiopsMl. 1. 111.) the same Barbarians against whom ha 
4iad fought in hla retreat (Anabasla, L Iv.) 



OF TH£ ROMAN £MPIR£. 49 

«m] , and, since the days of Crrusy tfaey mi^bt produce* under the various 
appellations of Chaldeans and Zantans, an uninterrupted prescription of war 
and rapine. Under the reign of Justinian, they acknowledged, the God and the 
•etiaperor of the Romans, and seven fortresses were built in the most accessible 
passes, to exclude the ambition of the Persian monarcb.(l30) The principal 
source of the Euphrates descends from the Chalybian mountains, and seems to 
^w toward the west and the Euzine ; bendine to the southwest, the river 
piasses under the walls of Satala and Melitene, (which were restored by Justi- 
niao as the bulwarks of the Lesser Armenia,) and gradually approacnes the 
Mediterranean sea: till at leneth, repelled by Mount Taurus,(131) ihe 
Euphrates inclines his long and mxible course to the southeast and tbe ^If of 
Persia. Among the Roman cities beyond the Euphrates, we distingui£ two 
recent foundations, which were named from Theodosius, and the rencs of the 
martyis ; and two capitals, Amida and EMessa, whidi are celebrated in the his- 
toiy of e veij age. Their strength was proportioned by Justinian to the danger of 
their situation. A ditch and palisade might be sufScient to resist the artless 
force of the cavalry of Scythia ; but more elaborate works were requited to 
sustain a re^lar siege against the arms and treasures of the great king. His 
skilful engineers uiderstood the methods of conducting deep mines, and of 
raising platforms to the level of the rampart : he shook the strongest battle- 
ments with his militaiy engines, and sometimes advanced to the assault with a 
line of moveable turrets on the backs of elephants. In the great cities of the 
east, the disadvantage of space, perhaps of position, was compensated by the 
zeal of the people, who seconded the garrison in the defence of their country 
and religion; and the fabulous promise of the Son o/God, that Edessa should 
never be taken, filled the citizens with valiant confidence, and chilled the 
besi^rs with doubt and dismay .(132) The subordinate towns of Armenia 
and Mesopotamia were diligently strengthened, and the posts which appeared 
Uy have any command of the ground or water,' were occupied by numerous 
forts, substantially built of stone, or more hastily erected with the obvious mate- 
rials of earth and brick. The eye of Justinian inrestigated every spot ; and h» 
cruel precautions might attract the war into some lonely vaje, whose peaceful 
natives, connected by trade and marriage, were ienorant of national discord and 
the quarrels of princes. Westward o7 the Euphrates, a sandy desert extends 
above six hundred miles to the Red Sea. Nature had interposed a vacant soli- 
tude between the ambition of two rival empires : the Arabians, till Mahomet 
arose, were formidable only as robbers ; and m the proud security of peace, the 
fortifications of Syria were neglected on the most vulnerable side. 

[A. D. 488.] But the national enmity, at least the efiects of that enmity, had 
been suspended by a tmce, which contmued above fourscore years. An ambas- 
sador from the Emperor Zeno accompanied the rash and unfortunate Perozes,*in 
his expedition against the Nepthalites^or White Huns, whose conquests had been 
stretched from the Caspian to the heart of India, whose throne was enriched 
with emei«ld8,(l33) and whose cavalry was supported by a line of two thou- 
sand elephants.(l34) The Persians^were twice circumvented, in a situation 



030) Prooopfiu,Pertl€. 1. 1. c 15. D«£diflc L Ui. c. 6. 

«..« V ... , .^ lUOi Mela, 111. 8). Fllny, a poet 88 w< 

lofUie 



(131) Ni Taanu obstet in nostra maila ventonu (Pomponloi Mela, HI. 8). Pliny, a poet as well aa a 
lataraliat (▼. 90), pflferonUiea tlie rtver and mountaiiL and deacilbea Uielr combat. See the o 



nerodotus. The promlM waa not In tne primitive lie of Euieblua, but dates at least from the vear 400 : 
aadathirdlieitthe F«r#iitM, waa soon rmiaed on tba two former (Evagrius, l.iv.cST). AaEdesaaAM 
been taken, Tlllemont muut disclaim the promise (Mem. Ecclcs. torn. i. p.,;3fl8. 383. 617). 
(133) Th^ were purchased from the merchants of Adulls who traded io India (Cosmas, Topograph. 



Tkris and Euphrates, in the exceUant Ueafcise of d'AnviUe. 

(138) Procooius (Penic. 1. ii. c, IS,) tells the storv with the tone half skeptical, half superstitions, of 
Herodotus. The promise was not In the i^rimltive lie of Euseblusj^but dates at least from the jear 400 : 

617).* 

(Cosmas, Top „_.^ 
Christ.' 1. zi. p. 330} ;' yet. In the estimate of precious 'stones, the Scythian emerald was the first, the Bao- 

trian the second, the Ethiopian only the Uiird (Ulir — . ~.> 

mines, ftc. of emenkls, are involved in darkness.; 

twelve sorts known to the ancients (Goguet, Origine des Loiz, kc part 11. 1. 11. c. 8, art 3). In ibis war 
Ihe H tins got, or at least Perozes loot, the hnesi pearl in the world, of which Proeopius relates a ridicu- 
lous fU»le. 

OM) The Indo- Scythe continued to reign from the time of Augostus (Dlonys. Periegiet 1088, with tba 
Commentary of Eustathius, in Hudson, ideograph. Minor, torn, iv.) to that of the elder Justin (Coniaa, 
Topograph. Christ. 1. xl. p. 336, 339). On their origin and conquests, see d'Anrille (sur {'(n^e 4>.Tt iSt 
fcc 69. 85. 80). In the second century they were maiten of Xiuioe or QUMTtt, 

Vol. 111.— E 



" precious 'stones, the Scythian emerald was the first, the Bao- 
iiird (Iflll*s Theophraatos, p. 01, ice. OS). The production, 
iarkness.; and it b doubtral whether we possess any of the 



§a THE DECLINE AND FALL 

wbich made valour useless and flight impossible ; and the double victory of the. 
Huns was achieved by military stratagem. They dismissed their royal captive- 
after he had submitted to adore the majesty of a Barbarian ; and the humili- 
ation was poorly evaded by the casuistical subtlety of the Magi, who instructed 
Perozes to direct his intention to the rising sun. The indignant successor ot- 
Cyrus foigot his daneer and his gratitude j be renewed the attack with head- 
strong fuiy, and lost ooth his army and his life.(135) The death of Peroies 
abandoned Persia to her foreign and domestic enemies ;t and twelve years of 
confusion elapsed before his son Cabades or Kobad could embrace any desi^^ 
of ambition or revenge. The unkind parsimony of Anastasius was the motive 
or pretence of a Roman war :Q36) the Huns and Arabs marched under the 
Persian standard, and th^ fortifications of Armenia and Mesopotamia were, at 
that time, in a ruinous or imperfect condition. The emperor returned his 
thanks to the governor and people of Martyropolis, for the prompt surrender of 
a city which could not be successfully defended, and the conflagration of Tbeo- 
dosiopolis might iustify the conduct of their prudent neighbours. Amida sus- 
tained a long ana destructive si^ : at the end of three months, the loss of 
fiAy thousand of the soldiers of Cabades was not balanced by any prospect of 
success, and it was in vain that the Magi deduced a flattering prediction from 
the indecency of the women^on the ramparts, who had revealed their most 
secret charms to the eyes of the assailants. At length, in a silent night, the^r 
ascended the most accessible tower, which was guaraed only bv some monk% 
oppressed, after the duties of a festival, with sleep and wine. Scaling ladden 
were applied at the dawn of day ; the presence of Cabades, his stem com-* 
mand, and his drawn sword, compelled tne Persians to vamjuish ; and before 
it was sheathed, fourscore thousand of the inhabitants had expiated the blood ol 
their companions. After the sicce of Amida, the war continued three yean, 
and the unhappy frontier tasted the full measure of its calamities. The gokl ot 
Anastasius was offered too late, the number of his trcM^s was defeated l>y th« 
number of their generals ; the country was stripped of its inhabitants, and both 
the living and the dead were abandoned to the wild beasts of the desert. The 
resbtance of Edessa, and the deficiency of spoil, inclined the mind of Cabades 
to peace : he sold his conquests for an exorbitant price ; and the same line» 
though marked with slaughter and devastation, still separated the two empires. 
To avert the repetition of the same evils, Anastasius resolved to (bund a new 
colony, so strong, that it should defy the power of the Persian, so &r advanced 
toward Assyria, that its stationary intm roigfat defend the province by the 
menace or operation of offensive war. For this purpose, the town of Dara,(l37) 
fourteen miles from Nisibis, and four days' journey from the Tigris, was 
peopled and adorned ; the hasty works of Anastasius were improved by the 
perseverance of Justinian ; and without insisting on places less important, the 
lortifications of Dara may represent the militaor architecture of the age. The 
city was surrounded with two walls, and the interval between ibem, of fifty 
paces, afforded a retreat to the cattle of the besieged. The inner wall was a 
monument of strength and beauty : it measured sixty feet from the ground and 
the height of the towers was one hundred feet ; the loop-holes, from whence 
an enemy might be annoyed with missile weapons, were small, but numerous : 
the soldiers were planted alon^ the rampart, under the shelter of double galle- 
ries, and a third platform, spacious and secure, was rviaed on the summit Sf ^ 
towers. The exterior waU appears to have been less lofly, but more solids 
and each tower was protected by a quadrangular bulwark. A hard rocli^ sc i 

(135) Seetiiefkteof PhinNUorPeniMf,a]idttic 
BMy be oompued wlUi ibe fragments of Oriental hii 
HMory of Penla, tranilated or abrUfled by Bteventjl. 1. c 3S, 
tertainad by Aawman (Blbliot. Orient, torn. 111. D. 396-497). 

(136) The Penlan war, under the rejina of Anaataalus and JnHin, aiay be eollected fttm Procopltii 
^eraic. 1. 1. c. 7, 8, 9). Tbeophanea (in Cbronofraph, p. IM— 177), Evagriua (1. UL e. 37), MarceUmia (l« 
GhiOQ. p. 47), and Joabua BtyUiea (apod Aaeoian. torn. L p. 979—961). 

(IShjTIie deaorlption of Dara la amply and correctly given by Prooopine (Perale. L L c 10, 1. IL e. 13 
DeSd»b.i.li.c.l,i,3,l.iU.c5}. Beetbeaituadon Ind^Anvrue (r£ttplii«ieetleTlgre,p.S3,S4,Sgft 
'-- 1 to double die iaiwval between Dan and NUbla. -w^r^ 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 5t 

lesisltid the tools of the miners, and on the southeast, where the fffound was 
more tractable, their approach was retarded by a new work, whicn advanced 
in the shape of a haif-moon. The double and treble ditches were filled with a 
stream of water ; and in the management of the river, the most skilful labour 
-was employed to supply the inhabitants^ to distress the besiegers, and to pre-^ 
vent the mischiefs ot a natural or artificial inundation. Dara continued more 
thansixtv years to fulfil the wishes of its founders, and to provoke the jealousy 
of the Persians, who incessantljr complained, that this impregnable fortress had 
been constructed in manifest violation of the treaty of peace between the two 
coapires.* 

JSetween the Euxine and the Caspian, the countries of Cdchoe, Iberia, and'' 
Albania, are intersected in every direction by the branches of Mount Caucasus ;L 
and the twa principal gaiess or passes, from north to south, have been frequently^ 
confounded in the geography both of the ancients and modems. The name of* 
Caspian or j^2&aftui»tgates, is properly applied to i)erbend,(138) which occu-^ 
pies a ^ort declivity between the mountains and the sea : the citjr, if we give 
credit to local tradition, had been founded by the Greeks ; and this daneeroo^ 
entrance was fortified by the kings of Persia, with a mofe, double walls, and 
doors of iron. The Beriau gates(t39) are formed by a narrow passace of six 
miles in mount Caucasus, which opens from the northern side of Iberia or 
Georgia, into the plain that reaches to the Tanais and the Volga. A fortress^ 
designed by Alexander perhaps, or one of his successors, to command that im-< 
portant pass, had descended by right of conquest or inheritance to a prince of 
the Huns, who ofiered it for a moderate price to the emperor t but while Anar 
tasius paused, while he timorously computed the cost and the dbtanoe, a mpre 
▼iffilant rival interposed, and Cabades forcibly occupied the straits of Caucasus^' 
The Albanian and Iberian gates excluded tne horsemen of Scytbia from the 
shortest and most practicable roads, and the whole front of the mountains was 
covered by the rampart of Gog and Magog, the long wall which has excited the 
curiosity of an Arabian caliph^l^d) and a Russian conqueror*(l4l) According 
to a recent description, hi^e stones seven feet thick, tweutynxie (eet in length, 
or height, are artificially loined without iron or cement, to compose a wall,, 
which runs above three hundred miles from the shores of Derbend, over the 
hills and fhrouffh the valleys of Daghestan and Geoigia. Without a vision, such 
a work might be undertaken by the policy of Cal^des ; without a miracle, it 
might be accomplished by his son, so formidable to the Romans under the name, 
of Chosroes ; so dear to the Orientals, under the appellation of Nushirwan^ 
The Persian monarch held in his hand the keys both of peace and war ; but 
he stipulated, in every treaty, that Justinian should contribute to the expense of 
a common barrier, which equally protected the two empires from the inroad* 
oftheScythians.(142) 

VII. Justinian suppressed the schools of Athens and the consulship of Rome^. 
which had given so many saees and heroes to mankind. Both these institutions- 
had long since deepenerated n-otn their primitive ^iory j yet some reproach may 
be justly inflicteaon the avarice and jealousy oi a prince, by whose hand sudL 
venerable ruins were destroyed. 

038) For die ehy mad pm of DeAend. tee d'Herbelot (BtblloC. Orient, p. 157. 891. 807), Fetfte de Ot 
Cnifac (HiflC. da GangiKaa, I. ir. e. 9), HiMoIra Genealoctgue das Tartan (Umd. L p. UO), Oleariiir 
(yoyafe ea P«ia& p. 1039—1041), and Coroeille te Bravn ( Voyacea, tom. i. p. 140, 147} : bis view ma« 
be eompared with Uie plan of Olearlua, wbo Judges the wall to be of abeili and gravel bardeaed t*s 



(139) Froeoiriiia, though with aone eonftakm, always denoaalnatea tiMm Caspian (Ferale. I. {. e 
1Q)< The pMi ia oow i^led Taunopa, Uie Tartar gates (d'AnvUle, Oeogniphle Ancfennc, torn. U. f 

(idO) The Imaginary ranpart of Oog and Mang. wMeh was serionsly eipiored, and betieved In 
a eaUph of tiie ninth ceniury, appears to be derived fhm the gales of Mount Caucasus, and a vague 
nportof the waaof€hloa(Oeograph.N«bieoait,p.987-99a Memoiies de r Aeademie, torn. nsL 
p.91*— 819). 

(Ml) Bee a learned diasortation of Baler, dt mmro GmeAMs, In Oomment Acad. Petropol. ann. 1791^ 



to—. L p. 409 183; bat Hts dcisUtuisof a map orplan. When the esar Peler L became master of Uep^ 
bend teth* year 17B, the meaaara of the wall was found to be 398$ Russian tfrfwitf, or faUioma, eaeh> 
.- -__.-_^.,. . hat more than fbnr miles in length. 

Chosrose or Noahfarwaii, In Pioeopiiu (Penic L i. cliL M^ . 

£t 



of aseaBlbeiBaalWi; In the whole» somewhat more than fbnr miles in 

£49} See the forUflcatlons and treaties of 
)aadd*Heibetot(p.08ti!). 



6t IHE DECLINE AND FALL 

Athens, afler her Persian triumphs, adopted the philosophy of Ionia and the 
ihetoric of Sicily ; and these studies became the patrimony of a city vfhost 
inhabitants, about thirty thousand males, condensed, within the period of a sin^^le 
. life, the genius of ages and millions. Our sense of the dignity of human nature 
is exalted bj the simple recollection, that Isocrate8(l4S) was the companion of 
Plato and Xenophon ; that he assisted, perhaps with the historian Tbucydi(le& 
at the £rst representations of the CEdipus of Sophocles and the Iphigenia of 
Euripides ; and that his pupils iBschines and Demosthenes contended for the 
crown of patriotism in the presence of Aristotle, the master of Tbeophrastus, 
vrho taught at Athens wflh the founders of the Stoic and Epicurean sects.(144) 
The ingenious youth of Attica enjoyed the benefits of their domestic education, 
ivbich was communicated without envy to the rival cities. Two thousand 
disciples heard the lessons of Theophrastus ;(145) the schools of rhetoric must 
have been still more populous than those of philosophy; and a rapid successioo 
of students diffused the fame of their teachers, as far as the utmost limits of the 
Grecian language and name. Those limits were enlaiged by the victories of 
Alexander ; the arts of Athens survived her freedom and dominion ; and the 
Qreek colonies which the Macedonians planted in Egypt, and scattered over 
Asia^ undertook long and frequent pilgrimaares to worship the Muses in their 
&vourite temple on me banks of the ilissus. The Latin conquerors respectfully 
listened to the instructions of their subjects and captives : the names of Cicero 
and Horace were enrolled in the schools of Athens ; ana after the perfect set* 
tiement of the Roman empire, the natives of Italy, of Africa, and of Britain, 
conversed in the ^^roves of^the academy with their fellow-students of the East. 
The studies of philosophy and eloquence are congenial to a popular state, which 
encourages the freedom of inquiry, and submits only to the force of persuasion. 
In the republics of Greece and Rome, the art of speaking was the powerful 
ewine ot patriotism or ambition ; and the schools of rhetoric poured forth a 
colony of statesmen and legislators. When the liberty of public debate was 
suppressed, the orator, in the honourable prefession of an advocate, might plead 
the cause of innocence and justice ; he might abuse his talents in the more pro- 
fitable trade of panej^ric ; and the same precepts continued to dictate the fan- 
ciful declamations of the sophist, and the chaster beauties of historical compo- 
sition. The systems which professed to unfold the nature of God, of man, and 
of the universe, entertained the curiosity of the philosophic student ; and accord* 
ing to the temper of his mind, he might doubt with the skeptics, or decide with 
{be stoics, sublimely speculate with Plato, or severely argue with Aristotle. 
The pride of the adverse sects had fixed an unattainable term of moral happi- 
ness and perfection; but the race was glorious and salutaiy; the disciples of 
^eno, ana even those of Epicurus, were taught both to act and to suffer ; and 
the death of Petronius was not less effectual than that of Seneca, to humble a 
^rant by the discoveir of his impotence. The li^ht of Science could not indeed 
be confined within the walls of Athens. Her mcomparable writers address 
themselves to the human race : the living masters emigrated to Italy and Asia : 
Berytus, in later tjipfs* was devoted to the study of the law ; astronomy and 
fikytle were cultivRted in the museum of Alexandria ; but the Attic schools of 
rlieioric and philosophy maintained their superior reputation from the PelopwH 

dLcoaieTof thL nSSnitnW of ««ir fathers. In the suburbs of the c.ty. the 

543, edit. H. Bieph. Phot. cod. ccllx. p 1453. ,«-,i-«i, 

(lU) The BChooto of AUieni are coplouily though coMiw^j 

yi^.!2.i. ?r vlil n S&-73, in torn. 1. Opp.) For the itate and i 

mffatOlymp.civll.(Dodweir«DI«eftat.aect.4^ 




OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 53 

academy of the Platonists, the lycaum of the Peripatetics, the portico of the 
Stoftrs, and the garden of the Epicureans, were planted with trees and decorated 
with statues ; and the philosophers, instead of being imnnured in a cloister, 
delivered their instructions in spacious and pleasant walks, which, at different 
hours, were consecrated to the exercises of the mind and body. The genius of 
the founders still lived in those venerable seats ; the ambition of succeeding to 
the masters of human reason, excited a generous emulation ; and the merit of 
the candidates was determined, on each vacancy, by the free voices of an en- 
lightened people. The Athenian piofessors were paid by their disciples : 
according to their mutual wants and abilities, the price appears to have varied 
ffom a mina to a talent ; and Isocrates himself, who derides the avarice of the 
sophists, required, in his school of rhetoric, about thirty pounds from each of his 
hundred pupils. The wages of industiy are just and honourable, yet the same 
Isocrates shed tears at the first receipt of a stipend ; the Stoic might blush when 
he was hired to preach the contempt of money : and I should be sonj to di»- 
cover, that Aristotle or Plato so far degenerated from the example of Socrates, 
as to excbanee knowledge for gold. But some property of lands and houses 
was settled by the permission of the laws, and the legacies of deceased friends, 
on the philosophic chairs of Athens. Epicurus bequeathed to his disciples the 
gardens which he had purchased for eighty mins or two himdred and fift^ 
pounds, with a fund sufficient for their Tnigai subsistence and monthly festi- 
vals ;(146) and the patrimony of Plato afibrded an annual rent, which, in eight 
centuries, was gradually increased from three to one thousand pieces of gold. (147) 
The schools of Athens were protected by the wisest and most virtuotis of the 
Roman princes. The libraiy which Hadrian founded, was placed in a portico 
adorned with pictures, statiies, and a roof of alabaster, and supported oy one 
hundred columns of Phrygian marble. The public salaries were assigned by 
the generous spirit of the Antonines ; and each professor, of politics, of rnetoric, 
of tbe Platonic, the Peripatetic, the Stoic, and the Epicurean philosophy, re- 
ceived an annual stipend of ten thousand drachmce, or more than three hundred 
pounds steriing.(l48) After the death of Marcus, these liberal donations, and 
the privileges attached to the thrones of science, were abolished and revived, 
dimmishea and enlaiged : but some vest^e of royal bounty may be found under 
the successors of Constantine ; and their arbitrary choice of an unworthy can • 
didate, might tempt the philosophers of Athens to regret the days of indep^n 
dence and poverty. (149) It is remarkable, that the impartial favour of the 
Antonines was bestowed on the four adverse sects of philosophy, which they 
considered as equally useful, or at least as equally ionocent Socrates had for 
merly been the glory and the reproach of his countiy ; and the first lessons of Epi 
curus so strangely scandalized the pious ears of the Athenians, that by his exiie^ 
and that of his antagonists, they silenced all vain disputes concerning the nature 
of the gods. But m the ensuing year they recalled the hasty decree, restored 
the liberty of the schools, and were convinced by the experience of ages, that 
the moral character of philosophers is not affected by the diversity of their theo- 
logical speculations.(lSO) 
The Gothic arms were less fatal to the schools of Athens than the establisb- 

(146) See the tesUment of Epicarus fn Diofren. Laert. I. z. segm. 16—90, p. 611, 612. A Mngle epMe 
(ad FamUisree, xili. I), displaya the Injustice of the Areopagns, the fidelity of the Epicurean!*, the dex- 
terous poUteiMM of Cicero, and the mixture of contempt and eeteem with which the Roman leaziton coar 
aidered the phlioeophy and phltoaophere of Greece. 

(147) Dftmaaciua, in ViL Isldor. apud Photium, cod. ccxlU. p. 1054. 

(148) See Lucian (in Eunech. torn. U. p. 350—350, edit. Reltz), Phlloatratua (in Vit Sophmt I. II. e. 
9), and Dion Caaalua, or Xiphilln (1. IxxL p. 11Q5), with Uietr edilora Du Soul, Olearina, and Seimar, and, 
abore nil, SahnaeluB (ad Hiet. AugusL p. T2). A iudlcious phllo«>pher (8mith*s Wealth of Nationp, vol- 
U. D. 340—374), prefers the free eontributloiw uf the studento to n llzed stipend for the proftssor. 

049) Brueker, Ulst. Crlt. Phlloeoph. torn. iL p. 310, fcc 

/««^ The birth of Epicurus is fixed to the year 349 before Christ (Bayle), Olympiad eix. 3; and h« 
I his school at Atbenn, Olymp. cxvili. 3, 306 years before the same era. This intolerant Inw 
iSQs, L xiiL p. 610. Dio«en. Jj«rtias, I. v. c 38, p. 390. Julius PoUux, ix. 5A was enacted in the 
aame, or the succeeding year (Sigonliis, Opp. torn. ▼. p. 63. Mena^ius. ad Diogen. Lcrt. p. 904. VoaiiA 
FHri Atlfei, torn. It. p. 67, 66). Theophrastus, chJef of the Peripatetics, and disciple «f Aiisiotle, waa 
iufckfci in the same exile. 



M THE DECLINE AND FALL 

meiit of a new religion, whose ministers superseded the f.'xcrcise oi reason^ 
lesolved every question by an article of faith, and comleinned the infidel or 
skeptic to eternal flames. In many a volume of laborious controveray, they 
exposed the weakness of the understanding and the corruption of the heart, 
iosulted human nature in the sages of antiauity, and proscribed the spirit of 
philosophical inquiry, so repugnant to the doctrine, or at least to the temper, 
of an humble believer. The surviving sect of the Platonists, whom Plato 
would have blushed to acknowledge, extravagantly mingled a sublime theory 
with the practice of superstition and mae^ic ; and as they remained alone in 
the midst of a Christian WiM'ld, they indulged a secret rancour against the 
•government of the church and state, whose severity was still suspended over 
Uieir beads. About a century after the rei^n of Julian,(15l) rroclus(152) 
nyas permitted to teach in the philosophic chair of the academy, and such was 
his industry that he frequently, in the same day, pronounced five lessons, and 
composed seven hundred lines. His sagacious mind explored the deepest 
questions of morals and metaphysics, and he ventured to uige eighteen aigu- 
ments against the Chrbtian doctrine of the creation of the world. But in the 
intervals of study, he personally conversed with Pan, jEsculapius, and Minerva, 
in whose mysteries he was secretly initiated, and whose prostrate statues be 
adored ; in the devout persuasion tnat the philosopher, who is a citizen of the 
universe, should be the priest of its various deities. An eclipse of the sun 
announced his approaching end ; and his life, with that of his scholar Isi* 
dore,(l53) compiled by two of their most learned disciples, exhibits a deplont 
4>Ie picture of the second childhood of human reason. Yet the golden chain, 
as it was fondly styled, of the Platonic succession, continued forty-four years 
from the death otProclus to the edict of Ju8tinian,(l54) [A. D. 485—539.] 
which impeded a perpetual silence on the schools of Athens, and excited the 
grief and indignation of the few remaining votaries of Grecian science and 
superstition. Seven friends and philosophers, Diogenes and Hermias, Eulalius 
and Priscian, Damascius, Isidore, and Simplicius, who dissented from the 
religion of their sovereign, embraced the resolution of seeking in a foreign land 
the freedom which was denied in their native country. They had beard, and 
they credulously believed, that the republic of Plato was realized in the despotic 
-government of Persia, andthat a patriot king reigned over the happiest and 
most virtuous of nations. They were soon astonished by the natural discoveiy, 
that Persia resembled the otMr countries of the globe ; that Cbosroes, who 
affected the name of a philosopher, was vain, cruel, and ambitious ; that bigotiy 
and a spirit of intolerance, prevailed among the Ma^i ; that the nobles were 
haughty, the courtiers servile, and the magistrates unjust ; that the guilty some- 
times escaped, and that the innocent were often oppressed. The disappoint- 
ment of the philosophers provoked them to overlook the real virtues of the 
Persians ; and they were scandalized more deeply perhaps than became their 
I>rofe8sion, with the plurality of wives and concubines, the incestuous mai^ 
riages, and the custom of exposing dead bodies to the dogs and vultures, instead 
•of biding them in the earth, or consuming them with fire. Their . repentance 
twas expressed by a precipitate return, and they loudly declared that they had 
rather die on the borders of the empire, than enjoy the wealth and favour of 
the Barbarian. From this journey, however, they derived a benefit which reflects 
the purest lustre on the character of Cbosroes. He required, that the seven 
sages who had visited the court of Persia, should be exempted -from the penal 
laws which Justinian enacted against his pagan subjects; and this privilege, 

(151) Thh Is no flinciful era: Uie pagara reckon their calamities from the reicn of their ioero. Proclas 
wtaoae nativity is marlced by hn horoscope (A. D. 413, February 8, at C. P.) died 134 yean am IvXtovs 
0aci\ms,A. D. 465 (Marin. Vitii Procli, c. 36). 

(US) Tlie life of Proclus, by Marinus, was published by Fabricius (Hamburi;, 1700, et ad calcem Bib- 
Hot. Latin. Lond. 1703). See Suidas (torn. iil. p. 185, J86), Pabricios (Bibliot. Grasc. 1. v. e. 96, p. 449— 
S6B)^nd Brvcker (Ilisu Grit. Philosoph. torn. li. p. 319—396). 

(153) The life of Isidore was composed by Damasrius (apud Photium, cod. ccxUi. p. 1036—1076). Bee 
«lie last ace of the pagan philosophers in Brucker (tcni. ii. p. 34J— 3S1). 

(154) The suppression of the schools of Athens in recorded fay Juhn Malala (torn. it. p 187, aur Deeio 
^Tof. Bol.j and an anonymous Chronicle in the Vatican library (aiiud Aleman. p 106) 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 55 

^expressly stipulated in a treaty of peace, was g^uarded by the vi^lance of a 
frowerful mediator. (165) Simplicius and his companions ended their lives in 
peace and obscurity i and as they left no disciples, they terminate the long list 
of Grecian philosopners, who may be justly praisedf, notwithstanding their 
defects, as the wisest and most virtuous of their contemporaries. The writings 
of Simplicius are now extant. His physical and metaphysical commentaries 
on Aristotle have passed away with tne fashion of the times ; but his moral 
interpretation of Epictetus is preserved in the library of nations, as a classic 
book, most excellently adapted to dhrect the will, to purify the heart, and to 
confirm the understandlogy by a just confidence in the nature both of God 
and man. 

[A. D. 541,] About the same time that Pythagoras first invented the appel- 
lation of philosopher^ liberty and the cooBulsnip were founded at Rome by the 
elder Brutus. The revolutions of the consular office, which may be viewed in 
the successive lights of a substance, a shadow, and a name, have been occa- 
sionally mentioned in the present history. The first magistrates of the republic 
had been chosen by the people, to exercise, in the senate and in the camp, the 

e>wers of peace and war, which were afterward translated to the emperors, 
ut the tradition of ancient d%nity was long revered by the Romans and Bar- 
barians. A Gothic historian applauds the consulship of Theodoric as the height 
of ail temporal glory and greatness ;(166) the kine of Italy himself congratu- 
lates those annual favourites of fortunes, who, witnout the cares, eijoyed the 
-splendour of the throne ; and at the end of a thousand years, two consuls were 
created by the sovereigns of Rome and Constantinople, for the sole purpose of 
giving a date to the year and a festival to the people. But the expenses of 
this iestival, in which the wealthy and the yain aspired to surpass their prede- 
'Cessors, insensibly arose to the enormous sum of fourscore thousand pounds ; 
)the vvisest senators declined a useless honour, which involved the luin of their 
families ; and to this reluctance I should impute the frequent chasms in the last 
age of the consular FatH. The predecessors of Justinian had assisted from 
'tm public treasures the dignity of the less opulent candidates : the avarice of 
! preferred the cheaper and more convenient method of advice and 
(157) Seven proce$no9u or spectacles were the number to wbich 
cJMiBfined the borse and chariot races, the athletic sports, the music, and 
'yaf(^ of the theatre, and the hunting of wild beasts ; and small pieces 
•were discreetly substituted to the gold medals, which had always 
-excited tumult and drunkenness, when they were scattered with a profuse hand 
among the populace. Notwithstanding these precautions, and his own example, 
the succession of consuls finally ceased in the thirteenth year of Justinian, 
whose despotic temjper might be gratified by the silent extinct bn of a title 
which admonished the Romans of their ancient freedom. (158) Yet the annual 
consulship still lived in the minds of the people ; they fondly expected its 
speedy restoration ; they applauded the gracious condescension of successive 
princes by whom it was assumed in the first year of their reign ; and three 
•<:enturies elapsed, after the death of Justinian, before that obsolete dignity, 
which bad been suppressed by custom, could be abolished by law.(l59) The 
-•imperfect mode oraistin|uisbing each year by the name of a magistrate, was 
usually supplied by the date of a permanent era * the creation of the world, 

(155) Af atiilfls <!• tl. p. 60, 70, 710 rehitM Uiis carkNM story. Cbomota aseended Uie throne In the yeiur 
SSlf ind made bia flnt peace with the Romana in Uie beginning of 933, a date moat oompfttible with his 
fMMf flune and tha^ •» age of laldara <AaaaiiiaD. BiUiot. Orient, torn. iii. p. 404, Pagl, torn. U. p. 943, 

(15S) Oaailodor. Variamm Eplat v\. L Joniaodea, e. 57, p. 096, edit Grot Qaod aammum bonum 
.primamqne in mundo deeoa edieltur. 

(157) See the legulatlooa of Justinian (NoveB. cv.) dated at Constantinople, July 5, and addiesMd to 
BirataglQS, treaattrer of the empire. 

(158) Proeopius, in Anecdot c. 96. Aleman. p. 109. In the zvttith year after the consnlahlp of Basl- 
llns, aeeordlnt to the reckoning of Maicellinns, Victor, Marius, Jfcc the secret history waa composed, and 
-in the eyea or Proeopius, the consolshlp was finally abolished. 

(139) By Leo the pbilosopber (Novrtl. zciv. A. D. 886—011). See Pagi (DIssertat Hypatfca. p. 39! 




9G3), and Doeange (CUoss. Grcc p. 1(85, 1630). Even the title was Tilified>- eonsulatus codidUl.... 
-irilescnnt, saja the emperor liiaaeir. 



66 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

accordii)^ (o the Sept 
Latins, since the ag< 
birth of Chri8t.(161) 



accordii)^ (o the Septuagint version, was adopted by the Greeks ;(160) and tW 
Latins, since the ae;e of Charlemagne^ have computed (heir time irom the 



CHAPTER XLL 

Conqueitt of Justinian in the We$t — OiaracUr and first campoigni of BehsarifU' 
— He invades and stdfdues the Vandal kingdom ^Africa — ffis triumph — The 
Gothic war — He recovers Sicily^ Naples^ and Rome— Siege of Rome by the- 
Chths — Their retreat andloss^^^-Surrmdtr of Ravemub— Glory tf Belisarius 
^His domestic ^ame and misfortune*. 

[A. D. 533.] When Justinian ascended the throne, about fifty vears after 
the fail of the Western empire, the kingdoms of the Goths and Vandals bad 
obtained a solid, and, as it might seem, a legal establishment both in Europe 
and Africa. The titles which Roman victory had inscribed, were erased with 
equal justice l^ the sword of the Barbarians ; and their successful rapine 
derived a more venerable sanction from time, from treaties, and from the oaths 
of fidelity already vepeated by a second or third generation of obedient subjects. 
Experience and Christianity bad refuted the superstitious hope, that Rome wa» 
founded by the gods to reign for ever over the nations of the earth. But the 
proud claim of perpetual and indefeasible dominion, which her soldiers could 
DO longer maintain, was firmly asserted by her statesmen and lawyers, whose- 
opinions have been sometimes revived and propagated in the modern schools 
of jurisprudence. After Rome herself had oeen stripped of the imperial 
purple, the princes of Constantinople assumed the sole and sacred sceptre of 
the monarchy: demanded, as their rightful inheritance, the provinces which 
had been subdued by the consuls, or possessed by the Cesars ; and feebly 
aspired to deliver their faithful subjects of the West from the usurpation of 
heretics and Barbarians. The execution of this splendid design was in some 
degree reserved for Justinian. During the first five years of hitjlfci|n, he 
remctantly waged a costlv and unprofitable war against the Peniiwo^tiirffc hi» 
pride submitted to bis ambition, and he purchased at the price of immkmtdxed 
and forty thousand pounds sterling, the benefit of a precarious tr u c i » > ipi U ch in 
the languaee of both nations, was dignified by the appellation of the endless. 
peace. The safety of the JElast enabled the emperor to employ his force» 
against the Vandafs ; and the internal state of Africa afforded an honourable 
motive, and promised a powerful support, to the Roman arms.(l) 

[A. D. 623 — 630.] According to the testament of the founder, the African. 
Kingdom had lineally descended to Hilderic the eldest of the Vandal prince*. 
A mild disposition inclined the son of a tyrant, the grandson of a conqueror, to< 
pcefer the counsels of clemency and peace ; and his accession was marked hj 

(ISO) Aecordliif to JuUim Afirlcanus. Slc, Ute world was created the lint of September, 5S06 yeaw^ 
diree montha, and twenty-fl^ dayi before Uie birtb of Chritt (aee Peirod, Antiquity daa Tema dolendU 
p. 90—38) ; and tbla era baa been u«ed by ttoe Greeks, the Oriental Cbriaiians, and even by tbe RuariaDa, 



wy, eonun „ ^_ , ^ 

Rome and Atbeni ; lOOU from the fall of the Bomaa empire in Uie west to tbe discovery of America ; and- 
tha remaining 396 will almost complete three centuries of the modem atate of Europe and mankind. I 
legrst this cbronolocy, so far preferable to our double and perplexed metiiod of counting backwarda and. 
forwards the years before and a Aer the CbrisUan era. 

(161) The era of the world has prevailed in the East since the sixth general oonndl (A. D. 681). In 
the west tbe Christian era was first invented in the sixth century : it was propagated In the seventh by the 
authority and writinga of venerable Bede: but it was not Ull the tenUi that Uie use became legal and 
popular. See TArt de verifier les Dates, DisserL Preliminaire, p. iii. xii. DIcUoaaire Diplomatique, 
torn, i^ 3W 3 37: the worka of a laborious society of Benedlciine monks. 

(1) The complete series of the Vandal war is related by Proonpius In a regular and dq^nt narrative 
(!• 1* c 0—35, 1. ii. c. 1— 13) : and happy would be my lot, could I always tread in the footsteps of such a 
guide. From the entire and diligent perusal of the Grepk text, I have a right to pronounce Uiat the Latia 
and FVench versions of GroUus and Cousin may not be implicitly tnitited ; yet the president Cousin liaa 
been often praised, and Hugo Grotlus was the flist scholar of a teamed age 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. VT 

(be salutaiy edict which restored two hundred bishops to their churches, and 
allowed the free profession of the Athanasian creea.^2) But the CathoJica 
accepted with cold and transient gratitude, a favour so inadequate to their pre- 
tensions, and the virtues of Hiideric oflfeiided the prejudices of his countnrmen. 
The Arian clergy presumed to insinuate that he had renounced the faitn, and 
the soldiers more loudly complained that he had degenerated from the couraea 
of his ancestors. His ambassadors were suspected of a secret and disgraceftil 
negotiation in the Byzantine court : and his general, the Achilles,(3) as he was 
named, of the Vandals, lost a battle against the naked and disorderly Moors. 
The public discontent was exasperated by Gelimer, whose age, descent, and 
military fame, gave him an apparent title to the succession : he assumed, witb 
the consent of thenation, the reins of government ; and his unfortunate sove- 
. rei^ sunk, without a struggle, from the throne to a dungeon, where he wa» 
stnctlv guarded with a Taithful counsellor, and his unpopular nephew, the 
Achilles of the Vandals. But the indulgence which Hiideric had shown to hit 
Catholic subjects had powerfully recommended him to the favour of Justinian, 
who, for the benefit of his own sect, could acknowledge the use and justice (^ 
religious toleration : their alliance, while the nephew of Justin remamed in a* 
private station, was cemented by the mutual exchange of gifts and letters ; and 
the emperor Justinian asserted the cause of royalty xad friendship. In two sue- 
cessiv« embassies, be admonished the usurper to repent of his treason, or to 
abstain, at least, from any farther violence which might provoke the displeasure 
of God and of the Romans ; to reverence the laws of kindred and succession, 
and to suffer an infirm old man peaceably to end his days, either on the throne 
of Carthage, or in the palace of Constantinople. The passions or even the 
prudence of Gfrelimer compelled him to reject these requests, which were uiged 



m the haughty tone of menace and command ; and he iustified bis ambition 
. . ^ * allc " 



a language rarely spoken in the Byzantine court, by alleffinff the right of a free 
people to remove or punish their chief mamtrate, who nad failed in the exe- 
cution of the kingl^ oflice. After this uuitless expostulation, the captive 
monarch was more rigorously treated, his nephew was deprived of bis eyes, 
and the cruel Vandal, confident in his strengtn and distance, derided the vain 
threats and slow preparations of the emperor of the East. Justinian resolved 
to deliver or revenue hb friend ; Gelimer to maintain his usurpation ; and 
the war was preceded, according to the practice of civilized nations, by 
the most solemn protestations that each party was sincerely desirous of peace.. 
The report of an African war was grateful only to the vam and idle populace 
ff Constantinople, whose poverty exempted tbem from tribute, and whose 
cowardice was seldom exposed to militaiy service. But the wiser citizens, 
who judged of the future by the past, revolved in their memory the immense 
Mkssj Doth of men and roooey, which the empire bad sustained in the expedition 
ef Basiliscus. The troops, which, after five laborious campaigns, had been 
JecalJed from the Persian frontier, dreaded the sea, the climate, and the arm» 
nf an unknown enemy. The ministers of the finances computed, as far a» 
liey might compute, the demapds of an African war ; the taxes which roust be- 
hand and levied to supply those insatiate demands : and the danger, lest their- 
own lives, or at least their lucrative employments, snould be made responsible 
ht the deficiency of the supply. Inspiredf by such selfish motives (for we may 
not suspect him of any zeaf for the puolic good,) John of Cappadocia ventured^ 
to oppose in full council the inclinations of his master. He confessed, that a 
victoiy of such importance could not be too dearly purchased ; but he repre- 
sented in a grave discourse the certain difficulties and the uncertain event. 

(3) See Ruiaart, HlsU PeraeeuL Vo&daL c. xlL p. 580. Hit bert eTidence is drawn from the life of St. . 
Fulfentiue, ooropoeed by one of bla diaciplet; transeribed In a treat meaiure In the annala of Baronina, 
and printed in arveral great eolleetiooe (Caulog. BiUlol. Banavhene, torn. L vol. il. p. 18S8). 

(3) For what quality of ttoe mind or body 1 For speed, or beaaty, or vaknir 1— In what langnace did 
the Vandale read Homer 1— Did be speak German 1— Ttie LaUns had four versions, (Fabric, torn. 1. L M. 
e. 3, p. VT) ; yet in spite of the praises of Seneca (Consul, c 96), they appear to have been more sorfnas 

But the BUM oTAehUlea might be ftunoua aii4 



3, p. V7) ; yet in spite of the praises of Seneca (Consul, c 96), they appear t 
I in imitaUag, than in tranriatinc, the Greek poeli. But the bum oTAehil 
mlar, eTwainong the tUliarate Baibwiana. 



^ THE DECLINE AND FALL 

^ Tou undertake," said the pnefect, " to besiege Carthage : by land, the distaaoa 
is not less than one hundred and forty days' joumeT ; on the sea, a whole 
year(4) must elapse before you can receive any intelligence from your fleet. 
if Anrica should be reduced, it cannot be preserved without the additional con- 
H]uest of Sicily and Italy. Success will impose the obligation of new labours : 
a single misbrtune will attract the Barbarians into the heart of your exhausted 
empire.'' Justinian felt the weight of this salutaiy advice ; he was confounded 
by the unwonted freedom of an obsequious servant ; and the design of the war 
would perhaps have been relinquished, if his courage had not been revived bT 
a voice which silenced the doubts of profane reason. " I have seen a vbion,^' 
cried an artful or fanatic bishop of the East. '* It is the will of heaven, O 
•«mpeior, that you should not abandon your ho]y enterprise for the deliverance 
of the African church. The God of battles will march before your standard, 
aixl disperse jrour enemies, who are the enemies of his Son." The emperor 
sught be tempted, and his counsellors were constrained, to give credit to this 
seasonable revelation : but they derived more rational hope from the revolt, 
which the adherents of Hilderic or Athanasius had already excited on the 
borders of the Vandal monarchy. Pudentius, an African subject, had privately 
-signified his loyal intentions, and a small military aid restored the province of 
Tripoli to the obedience of the Romans. The government of Sardinia bad 
been intrusted to Godas, a valiant Barbarian ; he suspended the payment of 
' tribute, disclaimed his allegiance to the usurper, and gave audience to the 
emissaries of Justinian, who found him master of that fiuitful island, at the 
bead of his guards, and proudly invested with the ensigns of royalty. The 
forces of the Vandals were dimmished by discord and suspicion ; the Roman 
.armies were animated by the spirit of Belisarius ; one of those heroic names 
which are familiar to every age and to every nation. 

The Africanus of new Rome was bora, and perhaps educated, among the 
Thracian peasants,(6) without any of those advantages which had formed the 
virtues of the elder and the younger Scipio ; a noble origin, liberal studies, 
• and the emulation of a free state. The silence of a loquacious secretary may 
be admitted, to prove that the youth of Belisarius could not afford any subject 
of praise : he served most assuredly with valour and reputation among the 
private guards of Justinian ; and when bis patron became emperor, the domestic 
was promoted to military command. AAer a bold inroad into Persarmenia, in 
whicQ his ^oiy was shared by a colleague, and his progress was checked by 
an enemv, belisarius repaired to the important station cm Dara, where he first 
accepted the service of Procopius, the faithful companion, and diligent historian, 
vof his exploit8.(6) The Mirranes of Persia advanced, with for^ thousand of 
ber best troops, to raze the fortifications of Dara ; and signified the day and the 
hour on which the citizens should prepare a bath for his refreshment after the 
toils of victory. He encountered an adversary equal to himself, by the new 
title of General of the East ; his superior in the science of war, but much 
inferior in the number and quality of his troops, which amounted only to twenty* 
five thousand Romans and strangers, relaxed in their discipline, and humbled by 
recent disasters. As the level plain of Dara refused all shelter to stratagem 
and ambush, Belisarius protected his front with a deep trench, which was pro- 
longed at first in perpendicular, and afterward in parallel lines, to cover the 
wings of cavalry advantageously posted to command the flaiiks and rear of the 
enemy. When the Roman centre was shaken, their well*t«med and rapid 
charge decided the conflict : the standard of Persia- fell ; the tmmor^i fled; 

(4) ^ year— abmtrd ezagseratloo ! ThA eonqaest of Africa may be dated A. D. 533, September 14 : it 
if celebraicd by Justinian in the |irerace to bii Inatitutea, which were published November SI, of the 
Mroe year. Including the voyege and leturn, such a compuutlon might be truly applied to our Indian 
empire. 

(5) 'QMtiro St h htXivtuHot at TcfytaMaf, A epoffwyrs mi iXXvpiCM' ficra^v jrcinii (Procop. Vandal. 1. 1, e. 
11>. Aleman. (N<it. ad Anecdot. p. 5), aa Italian, could easily reject the German vanity of Giphanlua 
«nd Vdserus, who wished lo clnlm Uie hero ; but his Germanla, a metropolis of Thrace, I cannot ilad 
4n any civil or ecclesiasiical list of t he provinces and cities.* 

(6) The two first Pcialan campaigns of Belisarius an lUrly tad eopioasly related by his secretary (Per- 
•u«e.l.l.cl»-l8). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 59 

ibe iDfantiy threw away their bucklers, and eight thousand of the v«nquisned 
were left on the field of battle. In the next campaign, Sjria was invaded on 
the side of the desert; and Belisaiius, with twenty thousapd men, hastened 
from Dara to the relief of the province. During the whole summer, the designs 
of the enemy were baffled by his skilful dispositions : he pressed their retreat, 
occupied each night their camp of the p^receding day, and would have secured 
a bloodless victory, if he could have resisted the impatience of his own troops. 
Their valiant promise was faimly supported in the hour of battle ; the ri^ht 
winr was exposed by the treacherous or cowardly desertion of the Christian 
Araos ; the Huns, a veteran band of eight hundxed warrion, were oppressed 
hv superior numbers ; the flight of the Isaurians was intercepted ; but the 
Roman infantry stood nrm on the left, for Belisarius himself, dismounting from 
bis horse, showed them that intrepid despair was their only safety.* They 
turned their backs to the Euphrates and their faces to the enemy ; innumerabw 
arrows glanced without effect from the compact and shelving order of their 
bucklers ; an impenetrable line of pikes was opposed to the repeated assaults 
of the Persian cavalry ; and after a resistance of many hours, the remaining 
troops were skilfully embarked under the shadow of the night. The Persian 
commander retired with disorder and disgrace, to answer a strict account of the 
lives of so manjr soldiers which he had consumed in a barren victory. But the 
fame of Belisarius was not sullied by a defeat, in which alone he had saved his 
army from the consequences of their own rashness : the approach of peace 
relieved him from the guard of the eastern frontier, and his conduct in the sedi* 
tion of Constantinople amply dischaiged his obligations to the emperor. When 
the African war became the topic of popular discourse and secret deliberation, 
each of the Roman generals was apprehensive rather than ambitious, of the 
dangerous honour; but as soon as Justinian had declared his preference of 
superior merit, their envy was rekindled by the unanimous applause which was 
given to the dioice of Belisarius. The temper of the Byzantine court may 
encourage a suspicion, that the hero was darkly assisted by the intri^es of his 
vfiiej the fair and subtle Antonina, who alternately enjoyed the conndence, and 
incurred the hatred, of the empress Theodora. Tlie birth of Antonina was 
ignoble, she descended from a family of charioteers ; and her chastity has been 
stained with the foulest reproach.^ Yet she reigned with long and absolute 
power over the mind of her illustrious husband ; and if Antonina disdained the 
merit of conji^l fidelity, she expressed a manly friendship to Belisarius, whom 
she accompanied with undaunted resolution in all the hardships and dangers of 
a military life.(7) 

[A. D. 633.] The preparations for the African war were not unworthy of 
the last contest between Rome and Carthage. The pride and flower of the 
army consisted of the guards of Belisarius, who, according to the pernicious 
indulgence of the tiroes, devoted themselves by a particular oath of fidelity to 
the service of their patron. Their strength and stature, for which they bad 
been curiously selected, the goodness of their horses and armour, and the 
assiduous practice of all the exercises of war, enabled them to act whatever their 
courage might prompt ; and their courage was exalted by the social honour of 
their rank, and the personal ambition of favour and fortune. Four hundred of 
the bravest of the Heruli marched under the banner of the faithful and active 
Pharas ; their untractable valour was more highly prized than the tame sub- 
mission of the Greeks and Syrians ; and of such importance was it deemed tc 
procure a reinforcement of six hundred Massagetse or Huns, that they were 
allured by fraud and deceit to engage in a naval expedition. Five thousand 
horse and ten thousand foot vrefe enooarked at Constantinople for the conquest 
of Africa, but the infantry, for the most part levied in Thrace and Isauria, 
yielded to the more prevailing use and reputation of the cavaliy ; and the 
Scythian bow was the weapon on which the armies of Rome were now reduced 
lo place their principal dependence. From a laudable desire to assert the 

(7) See U>e birth and characier of Antenlaa, in the Anecdotei, c 1^ and the nom of A lpiMpMm, p.3> 



60 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

dignity of bis theme, Procopius defends the soldiers of his own time agaimC 
the morose critics, who confined that respectable name to the heav^ armed 
warriors of antiquity, and maliciously observed, that the word archer is intro- 
duced by Homer(8) as a term of contempt. ^'Such contempt mi|g;ht perhaps 
be due to the naked youths who appeared on foot in the fields orTro^, and, 
luikii^ behind a tomo-stone, or the shield of a friend, drew the bowstrine to 
their Dreast,(9^ and dismissed a feeble and lifeless arrow. But our archers 
(pursues the nistorian) are mounted on horses, which they manage with 
admirable skill ; their head and shoulders are protected by a casque or buckler; 
they wear ereaves of iron on their legs, and their bodies are guarded by a coat 
of mail. On their right side hangs a quiver, a sword on their left, and theii 
hand is accustomed to wield a lance or javelin in closer combat Their bow» 
are strong and weighty; they shoot in every possible direction, advancing, 
retreating, to the front, to the rear, or to either flank : and as they are taught 
to draw the bowstring not to the breast, buf to the ri^nt ear, firm indeed must 
be the armour that can resist the rapid violence of their shaft." Five hundred 
transports, navigated by twenty tnousand mariners of Egypt, Cilicia, and 
Ionia, were collected in the harSour of Constantinople. The smallest of these 
vessels may be computed at thirty, the largest at five hundred, tons ; and the 
&ir average will supply an allowance, liberal, but not profuse, of about one 
hundred thousand tons,(10) for the reception of thirty-five thousand soldiers and 
sailors, of five thousand horses, of arms, engines, and military stores, and of a 
sufficient stock of water and provisions for a voyage, perhaps of three months. 
The proud galleys, which in former ages swept the Meditemnean with so 
many nundred oars, had long since disappeared ; and the fleet of Justinian was 
escorted only by ninety-two light brifantines, covered kom the missile weapons 
of .the enemy, and rowed by two thousand of the brav^ and robust youth ol 
Constantinople. Twenty-two generals are named, most of whom were after- 
ward distinguished in the wars of Africa and Italy: but the supreme command, 
both by land and sea, was delegated to Belisarius alone, with a boundless 
power of acting according to his discretion, as if the emperor himself were 
present. The separation of the naval and military professions is at once tfae- 
effect and the cause of the modern improvements m the science of navigation 
and maritime war. 

[A. D. 633.] In the seventh year of the reign of Justinian, and about the 
time of the summer solstice, the whole fleet of six hundred ships was ranged 
in martial pomp before the gardens of the palace. The patriarch pronounced 
his benediction, the emperor signified his last commands, the general's trumpet 
gave the si^l of departure, and every heart, according to its fears or wishes, 
explored with anxious curiosity the omens of misfortune and success. The first 
halt was made at Perinthus or Heradea, where Belisarius waited five days to 
receive some Thracian horses, a military gift of his sovereign. From thence 
the fleet pursued their course through the midst of the Propontis; but as they 
struggled to pass the straits of the Hellespont, an unfavourable wind detained 
them four days at Abydus, where the general exhibited a memorable lesson of 
firmness and severity. Two of the Huns, who in a drunken quarrel had slain 
one of their fellow-soldiers, were instantly shown to the army suspended on a 
lofty gibbet. The national indignity was resented by their countrymen, wh» 

(8) See Um prelkee of Proeopiue. The enemies of archery might qnote the reproechee of Diooede 
(Died. A. 385, ice.) and the permittere vulnera ventie of Lucan (vill. 384) ; yet the Romane could not 
despite Um arrowa of the Parthians; and in the alege of Troy, Pandanw, Pairia, andTeooer, pleioed ihoaa 
haughty warriorn who Inaulled them aa women or children. 

(9) Ncof»r/(cv fMT^ nXanv^ nla St oi^mov (Iliad. A. 1S3). Howconctofr— bow Jnet— liow beautiful la 
the whole picture ! I lee tbe attitudes of the archer— I hear the twanging of the bow ; 

,^ AtY\t Snxt vevp*i 6* luy* taxcvi a^ro d*«i«o(. 

(10) The text appear* tn allow for the largest veaMli 50,000 medlmni, or 3000 tone (since the 
medirnnui weighed 160 Roman, or l!20 avoirdupois, pounds). I have given a more/ational interpretation, 
by supposinc that the Aufc style of Proeoplns conceals tbe legal and popular madhu, a sixth part of the 
wuiimmu$. (Hooper's Ancient Measures, p. I5S, Jtc) A contrary, and indeed a stranger, nitotake, baa 
crept Into an oration of DInarchus (contra Demosthenem, In Reiske Orator. Gnsc. torn. Iv. P. ii. p. 34). 
By reducing the niMi*«r of ships from 500 to 50, and translating ntSi^voi by summ, or pouuds, Cousin ha» 
fneraoiiy allowed 500 tons ibr the whole of tho Imperial fleet !— Did lie never tbinli ? 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE- $1 

disclaimed the serrile laws of the empire, and asserted the free pririlege of 
Scythia, where a small 6ne was allowed to expiate the hasty sallies of intern- 
Beraoce and anger. Their complaints were specious, their clamours were 
loud, and the Romans were not averse to the example of disorder and impuni^^. 
But the rising sedition was appeased by the authority and eloquence of the 

Sneral : and he represented U> the assembled troops the obligation of justice, 
s importance of discipline, the rewards of piety and virtue, and the unpar- 
donable guilt of murder, which, in his apprehension, was aggravated rather 
than excused by the vice of intoixicatioo.( 11) In the navigation from the Hel- 
lespont to Peloponnesus, which the Greeks, after the siege of Troy, had per- 
formed in four days ;(12) the fleet of Belisarius was fuided in their course by 
bis master^Uey, conspicuous in the day by the redness of the sails, and in 
the night by the torches blazing from the mast-head. It was the duty of the 
pilots, as they steered between the islands, and turned the capes of Malea and 
Tenarium, to preserve the just order and regular intervals of such a multitude 
of ships ; as the wind was &ir and moderate, their labours were not unsuccessful, 
and the troops were safely disembarked at Methone on the Messenian coast, to 
repose themselves for a while after the fatigues of the sea. In this place they 
experienced how avarice, invested with authority, may sport with the lives of 
thousands which are bravely exposed for the public service. According to 
inilitary practice, the bread or biscuit of the Romans was twice prepared in 
the oven, and a diminution of one-fourth was cheerfully allowed for the loss of 
weight. To gain this miserable profit, and to save the expense of wood, the 

EneTect John of Cappadocia had given orders that the flour should be slightly 
aked by the same hie which warmed the baths of Constantinople ; and when 
the sacks were opened, a soft and mouldy paste was distributed to the army. 
Such unwholesome food, assisted by the beat of the climate and- season, soon 
moduced an epidemical disease, which swept awaj; five hundred soldiers. 
Their health was restored by the diligence ot Belisarius, who provided fresh 
bread at Methone, and boldy expressed his just and humane indignation : the 
emperor heard his complaint; the general was praised ; but the minister was 
not punished. From the port of Methone, the pilots steered along the western 
coast of Peloponnesus, as far as the isle of Zacynthus or Zant, before they 
undertook the voyage (in their eyes the most arduous voyage) of one hundred 
leagues over the Ionian sea. As the fleet was surprised by a calm, sixteen 
days were consumed in the slow navigation ; and even the general would have 
suffered the intolerable hardship of thirst, if the ingenuity of Antonina had not 
preserved the water in glass bottles, which she Buried deep in the sand in a 
part of the ship impervious to the rays of the sun. At length, the harbour of 
Caucana,(l3) on the southern side of Sicily, afibrded a secure and hospitable 
fAielter. The Gothic officers who governed the island in the name of the 
dati^ter and grandson of Theodoric, obeyed their imprudent orders, to receive 
the troops of Justinian like friends. and allies: provisions were liberally sup- 
plied, the cavalry was remounted,(14) and Procopius soon returned firom Syra- 
cuse with ccNrrect information of the state and designs of the Vandals. His 
intelligence determined Belisarius to hasten his operations, and his wise impa- 
tience was seconded by the winds. The fleet lost sight of Sicily, passed 
before the isle of Malta, discovered the capes of Africa, ran along the coast 

(U) I have md of a Greek legtoiator, wbo inffieted a dnAU penalty on the crimes eommitted In a lUti 
ofintojicartnn ; but it Beeaia agreed that this was rather a poUUcal than a moral law. 

(19) Or even in three days, since they anchored the first evening in the neighbouring Isle of Tenedos : 
the second day they sailed to Lesbos, the third to the promontory of EuboBa, and on the foorth Uiey 
Teaebed Aigoa (Homer. Odys. r. 139—183. Wood's Essay on Homer, p. 40~4«j. A pliata sailed fiom 
the HeUenpoDt to the sea-port at Bparta In three days (Xenophon, Hellen. 1. IL c. 1). 

03) Caucana, near Camarina, is at least 50 miles (3S0 or 400 stadia) from Syraeoae (Ohivcr. Slcflia 
Aatiqna, p. 191).* 

(M) Procopius, Gothic. L i. e. 3. Tibi toDIt hinnitam apta qaadrigls eqna, in the Sicilian pastures of 

Cfavspbos (Borat. Carm. q. it 16). Acragas magnanimOm qaondam generator eqnonun (Vita. 

Aseld. ill. 704) TbeK0*8 hones, whose victories are immortalized by Pindar, were bred In tua 

CMtlkliy> 



68 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

with a strongs tpale from the northeast, and finally cast anchor off the piomoit- 
tonr of Caput Vada, about five days' journey to the south of Carthage.(16) 

If Gelimer had been informed of the approach of the enemy, be must hare 
delayed the conquest of Sardinia, for the immediate defence of his person and 
kin^om. A detachment of five thousand soldiers, and one hundred and 
twenty g^alleys, would have joined the remaining: forces of the Vandals ; and 
the descendant of Genseric mu^ht have surprised and oppressed k fleet of deep- 
laden transports incapable oTaction, and of ]4;ht brisantines that seem ontj 
qualified for flight. Belisarius had secretly trembleawhen he overheard htf 
soldiers, in the passage, emboldening each other to confess their apprehensions , 
if they were once on shore, they hoped to maintain the honour of their aims ; 
but if they should be attacked at sea, they did not blush to acknowledge that 
they wanted courage to contend at the same time with the winds, the waves, 
and the fiarbarians.(l6) The knowledge of their sentiments decided Belisa- 
rius to seize the first op^rtunity of landing them on the coast of Afirica : and 
he prudently rejected, m a council of war, the proposal of sailing witD the 
fleet and armjr into the port of Carthage.* Three months after their departum 
fr&m Constantinople, the men and hones, the arms and military stores, were 
safely disembarked, and five soldiers were left as a guard on board of each of 
the ships, which were disposed in the form of a semicircle. The remainder 
of the troops occupied a camp on the sea-shore, which they formed acoordiog 
to ancient discipline, with a ditch and rampart ; and the discovery of a source 
of fresh water, while it allayed the thh«t, excited the ^superstitious confidence 
of the Romans. The next roomiog, some of the neigfaooaring gardens were 
pillaged ; and Belisarius, after chastising the ofienders, embraced the slivht 
occasion, but the decisive moment, of inculcating the maxims of justice, mode- 
ration, and genuine policy. '^ When I first accepted the commission of sub- 
duing Africa, I depended much less," said the general, '*on the nambers, or 
even the braveiy of my troops, than upon the friendly disposition of the 
^natives, and their immortal hatred to the Vandals. You alooe can deprive me 
of this hope : if you continue to extort by rapine what mij^ht be purchased for 
a little money, such acta jf violence will reconcile these implacable enemies, 
and unite them in a just and holy league against the invaders of their oountr^.'* 
These exhortations were enforced by a rigid discipline: of which the soldiers 
themselves soon felt and praised the sahitajy efiects. The inhabitants, instead 
of deserting their houses, or hiding their com, supplied the Romans with a fair 
and liberal market : the civil officers of the province continued to exercise their 
functions in the name of Justinian ; and the cleigy, from motives of conscience 
and interest, assiduously laboured to promote the cause of a Catholic emperor. 
The small town of Sullecte,(l7) one day's journey from the camp, had the 
honour of being foremost to open her gates, and to resume her ancient alle* 
fiance : the largest cities of Leptis ana Adrumetum imitated the example of 
loyalty as soon as Belisarius appeared ; and he advanced without opposition as 
far as Grasse, a palace of the Vandal kings, at the distance of fifty miles ftom 
Carthage. The weary Romans indol^d themselves in the refreshment of 
shady ^vcs, cool fountains, and delicious fruits ; and the preference which 
Procopius allows to these gardens over any that he had seeik either in the East 
or West, may be ascribed either to the taste or the fatigue of the historian. In 
three generations, prosperitjr and a warm climate had dissolved the hardy 
virtue of the Vandals, who insensibly became the most luxurious of mankind. 
In their villas and gardens which might deserve the Persian name o( para 

(15) TlMCtapiitVadaorPraeoplaf(w]ieNJattliiiuaftanrardlbaiided«elty^^ 

tiM prmnoiitorj of AmmoD 1q Strobo, Um BracbodeB of FtqliiBr, Um OapwkUft «r Um wutdmm, a tali 
nvrow lUp UMt raiH Into Um MS (fi»a.w*9 Tnveta, p. 111). 

(16) AoenturiooorHsrk Antony gxprcwed, tfKWjh In a more manly «nin, die nan dkllka to tha 
■aa and to naval combati. (Plutarcli in Antonio, p. 1730, ediL Hen. Btepn.) _ 

(17) Snlleele la perbape die Turrte Hannlbalte, an old bolMlns, now ne tafe ai tfw IWer of 
Lonioo. The mareh of Bdiiarlaa to Lepde, Adrnmetnm, Ifee. Is Uhntrated by tbe canmalpi of Oeear 
(Hirdiie. de Bello Africaao, wkh die Analyee of Gukbaidl), and Bliair*f TraTeb(p. 10l--U30 to Um 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. •» 

tii$6t{lS) they enjoyed a cool and elegant repose ; and, after the daily use of 
the bath, the fiarbariaos were seated at a table profusely spread with the deli • 
cacies of the land and sea. Their silken robes loosely flowii]^, after the 
fashion of the Medes, were embroidered with gold: love and hunting were the 
labours of their life, and their vacant hours were amused by pantomimes, 
chariot*races, and the masic and dances of the theatre. 

In a march of ten or twelve days, the vigilance of Belisarius was constantly 
awake and active against his unseen enemies, by whonu in every place, and at 
eveiy hour, he might be suddenly attacked. An officer of confidence and 
merit, John the Armenian, led the vanguard of three hundred horse ; six hun- 
dred Massagetae covered at a certain distance the left flank ; and the whole 
fleet, steering along the coast, seldom lost sight of the army, which moved 
each day about twelve miles, and lodged in the evening in strong camps, or in 
friendly towns. The near approach of the Romans to Carthaee filled the 
mind of Geiimer with anxiety and tenxm He prudently wished to protract 
the war till his brother, with his veteran tnx^, should return finom tne con- 
quest of Sardinia ; and he now lamented the rash policy of his ancestors, who^ 
by destroying the fortifications of Africa, bad left him only the dangerous 
resource of nski«« a battle in the neighbouiixwd of his capital. The Vandai 
conquerors, from their original number of fifty thousand, were multiplied, with- 
out including their women and children, to one hundred and sixty thousand 
fighting men :* and such forces, animated with valour and anion, might have 
crusbed, at their first landing, the feeble and exhausted bands of the Roman 
l^neral. fiut the friends of the captive king were more inclined to accept the 
invitations, than to resist the progress, of Belisarius ; and many a prouci Bar- 
barian disguised his aversion to war under the more specious name ot his hatred 
to the usurper. Yet the authority and promises of Ueliraer collected a formi- 
dable army, and his plans were concerted with some degree of military skill. 
An order was despatched to his brother Ammatas, to collect all the forces of 
Carthage, and to encounter the van of the Roman army at the distance of ten 
miles iiom the city: his nephew Gibamund, with two thousand horse, was 
destined to attack their left, when the monarch himself, who silently followed, 
should charge their rear, in a situation which excluded them fimm the aid or 
even the view of their fleet. But the rashness of Ammatas was fatal to him- 
self and his countiy. He anticipated the hour of attack, outstripped his tardy 
followers, and was pierced with a mortal wound, after he had slain with his 
own hand twelve of his boldest antagonists. His Vandals fled to Carthage ; the 
highway, almost ten miles, was strewed with dead bodies; and it seemed 
incredible that such multitudes could be slaughtered by the swords of three 
hundred Romans. The nephew of Grelimer was defeatea after a sAighi combat 
by the six hundred Massagetae : they did not equal the third part of his num- 
bers ; but each Scythian was fired by the example of his chief, who gloriously 
exercised the privilege of his family, by riding foremost and alone to shoot the 
first arrow against the enemy. In the meanwhile Geiimer himself, ignorant of 
the event, and mi^uided by the windings of the hills, inadvertently passed the 
Roman army, and reached the scene of action where Ammatas had fallen. He 
wept the fate of his brother and of Carthage, chaiged with irresistible fuiy the 
advancing squadrons, and might have pursued, ara perhaps decided, the vic- 
tory, if he had not wasted ttiose inestimable moments in the dischaif^of a vain, 
though pious duty to the dead. While his spirit was broken by this mournful 
office, he heard the trumpet of Belisarius, who^ leaving Antonina and his 
infantry in the camp, pressed forward with his guards and the remainder of the 
cavalry to rally his flying troops, and to restore the fortune of the day. Much 
room could not be found in tliis disoideriy battle for the talents of a general ; 
but the king fled before the hero; and the Vandals, accustomed only to a 

nenU, may be rapnnaicd bjrtiie soyaToMlea of lipahan (Voyag« d*Oltarfiii, p. 774). Baa. to tin 
OfMk raainoa, tlMli ommc pcrfeei noM (Loagoa, PaMonJ. I. iv. ii.9S-l«L Aahlilai Taa«i,Ll. 



€4 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Moorish enemy, were incapable of withstanding^ the arms and discipline of the 
Romans. Gelimer retired with hasty steps toward the desert of Numidia ; 
but be had soon the consolation of leaming^ that his private orders for the exe- 
cution of Hikieric and his captive friends had been faithfully obeyed. The 
tjrant^s revenge was useful only to his enemies. The death of a lawful prince 
excited the compassion of his people ; his life miebt have perplexed the vic- 
torious Romans: and the lieutenant of Justinian, by a crime of which be was 
innocent, was relieved from the painful alternative of forfeiting his honour or 
relinquishine^ his conquests. 

[A. D. 533.1 As soon as the tumult bad subsided, the several parts of the 
army informed each other of the accidents of the day ; and Belisarius pitched 
bis camp on the field of victory, to which the tenth mile-stone from Carthage 
had applied the Latin appellation of decnmu. From a wise suspicion of the 
stratagems and resources of the Vandals, be marched the next day in order of 
battle^ halted in the evening before the gates of Carthage, and allowed a night 
of repose, that he might not, in darkness and disorder, expose the city to the 
license of the soldiers, or the soldiers themselves to the secret ambush of the 
city. But as the fears of Belisarius were the result of calm and intrepid reason, 
be was soon satisfied that be might confide, without danjger, in the peaceful 
and friendly aspect of the capital. Garthajge blazed with mnumerable torches,' 
the signals of the public joy : the cham was removed that guarded the 
entrance of the port ; the eates were thrown open, and the people* with accla- 
mations of mtilude, hailed and invited their Roman deliverers. The defeat of 
the Vandals, and the freedom of Africa, were announced to the city on the 
eve of St. Cyprian, when the churches were already adorned and illuminated 
for the festival of the martTr, whom three centuries of superstition had almost 
raised to a local deity, llie Arians, conscious that then* reign bad expired, 
resiisrned the temple to the Catholics, who rescued their saint from profane hands, 
performed the holy rites, and loudly proclaimed the creed of Athanasius and 
Justinian. One awful hour reversed the fortunes of the contending parties. 
The suppliant Vandals, who bad so lately indulged the vices of conquerors, 
sought an humble refuge in the sanctuary of the cnurcb ; while the merchants 
of tbe East were delivered from the deepest dungeon of the palace by their 
aflfrigbted keeper, who implored the protection of bis captives, and snowed 
them, through an aperture in the walls, the sails of the Roman fleet. After 
their separation from the army, the naval commanders had proceeded with slow 
caution along the coast, till they reached the Herroiean promontory, and ob- 
tained the first intelligence of the victory of Belisarius. Faithful to his instruc- 
tions, they would have cast anchor about twenty miles from Carthage, if the 
more skilful seamen bad not represented the penis of the shore, and the signs 
of an impending tempest. StiQ ignorant of the revolution, they declined, how- 
ever, the rash attempt of forcing the chain of the port ; and the adjacent har- 
bour and suburb of Mandracium were insulted only by tbe rapine of a private 
'officer who disobeyed and deserted bis leaders. But the imperial fleet, 
advancing with a fair wind, steered through the narrow entrance of the Goletta, 
and occupied in the deep and capack>us lake of Tunis a secure station about 
five miles from the capita].(19) xio sooner was Belisarius informed of their 
arrival, than he despatched orders that the greatest part of the mariners should 
be immediately landed to join the triumph, and to swell tbe apparent numbers 
of the Romans. Before he allowed them to enter the gates of Carthage, he 
exhorted tliem, in a discourse worthy of himself and the occasion, not to dis- 
crace the glory of their arms ; and to remember that the Vandals had been 
the tyrants, but that they were the deliverers of the Africans, who must now 
be respected as tbe voluntary and affectionate subjects of their common sove- 

(10) The nelghbottrhood of CtrUuKe, tlie wa, Uw land, and die rlTora, are chanf od almost aa mneh m 
the worka of man. Tbe taUraam, or neck, of Uie dtjr la now oonfovnded widi the eoDtlneot : the harboai 
ii a dry plain ; and the lake or atagnum, no mors than a moraai, wlUi six or seven fhet water In the mil 
eliannel. See d*AavUle (Geographie Anclenne, tona. W. p. », Bhaw, (Trmvela, i 77— 84i, Maraiol 
(Description de TAMqne, u>m. U. p. 465,) and Thoanoa (IrflL IS, looa. lU. p. SM) 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 65 

^eigo. The Romans inarched through the streets in dose ranks, prepared for 
^!>attle if an enem^ had appeared ; the strict order maintained b^ the jgeneral 
•imprinted on their minds the duty of obedience ; and in an age in which cus- 
tom and impunity almost sanctited the abuse of conquest, the genius of one 
man repressed the passions of a victorious army. The voice olmenace and 
eomplamt was silent ; the trade of Carthage was not interrupted ; while Africa 
changed her master and her government, the shops continued open and busy; 
and Oie soldien, after sufficient euards had been posted, modestly departed to 
the houses which were allottecTfor their reception, fielisarius fixed his resi- 
<ience in the palace ; seated himself on the throne of Genseric ; accepted and 
distributed tfaMS barbaric spoil ; granted their lives to the suppliant Vandals ; 
and laboured to repair the damase which the suburb of Manaracium had sus- 
tained in the preceding ni^bt. At supper, he entertained hb principal officers 
with the form and magnificence of a royal banquet.(20) The victor was 
respectfully served by the captive officers oF the household ; and in the moments 
of festivity, when the impartial spectators applauded the fortune and merit of 
fielisarius, his envious flatterers secretly shed their venom on eveiy word and 
gesture which might alann the suspicions of a jealous monarch. One day was 
given to these pompous scenes, which may not be despised as useless if thej 
attracted the popular veneration ; but the active mind of fielisarius, which in 
(he pride of victory could suppose a defeat, had already resolved that the 
Roman empire in Africa should not depend on the chance of arras, or the favour 
of the people. The fortifications of Carthageiiad alone been exempted from the 

feneral proscription ; but in the reign of ninety-five years, they were suffered to 
ecay by the thoughtless and indolent Vandals. A wiser conqueror restored, with 
incredible despatch, the walls and ditches of the city. His liberality encouraged 
the woricmen ; the soldiers, the mariners, and the citizens vied with each other 
in the salutary labour ; and Gelimer, who had feared to trust his person in an 
open town, beheld with astonishment and despair the rising strength of an 
impregnable fortress. 

[A. D. 633.1 That unfortunate monarch, after the loss of his capital, applied 
himself to collect the remains of an army, scattered, rather than destrovea, by 
the preceding battle ; and the hopes of pillage attracted some Moorish bands 
to the standard of Gelimer. He encamped in the fields of fiulla, four days' 
journey from Carthage ; insulted the capital, which he deprived of the use of 
an aqueduct ; proposed a high reward for the head of every Roman ; affected 
to spare the persons and property of his African subjects, and secretly ne^ 
tiated. with the Arian sectaries and the confederate Huns. Under these cir- 
cumstances, the conquest of Sardinia served only to agjnavate bis distress : be 
reflected with the deepest anguish, that he had wasted, in that useless enter- 
prise, five thousand of his bravest troops ; and be read, with grief and shame, 
the victorious letters of his brother Zano,twho expressed a sanpine confidence 
that the kipg, alter the example of their ancestors, had already chastised the 
rashness of the Roman invader. **AIas! my brother," replied Gelimer, 
** Heaven has declared aeainst our unhappy nation. While you have subdued 
Sardinia, we have lost A&ica. No sooner did fielisarius appear with a handful 
of soldiers, than courage and prosperity deserted the cause of the Vandals. 
Your nephew Gibamund, your orotner Ammatus, have been betrayed to death 
by the cowardice of their followei?. Our horses, our ships, Cartbage itself, 
and all Africa, are in the power of the enemy. Yet the Vandals still prefer an 
ignominious repose, at the expense of then wives and children, their wealth 
and liberty. Notbinz now remains except the field ot fiulla, and the hope of 
your valour. Abandon Sardinia; fly to our relief; restore our empire, or 
perish by our side." On the receipt of this epistle, Zano imparted his griet 
•to the principal Vandals ; but tbe intelligence was prudently concealed from 

(90) Prom Delphi, Uw name of Delphieam WMjiven both in Greek and Latin, to a tripod ; and by n 
eaaf analogy, the same appeHation extended at Home, Conatantinople, and Cartbace, to the royal ban- 
tneUng room (Proeoploa» VandaL L I. c SI. Ducnnge, Gloai. Gnsc. p. S77. Aca^kov. ad Alexiad. 
pu4W). 

Vol. 111.— F 



66 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

the native: of the island. The troops embarked in one bundved and tweo^ 
ralle]rs at the port of Cagliarf, cast anchor the third day on the confines of 
Mauritania, and hastily pursued their march to join the roval ttandaid in tW 
camp of Bulla. Mournful was the interview : the two orodwis embncfd f 
they wept in silence ; no questions were asked of the Sardinian victoiy; no 
inquines were made of the Afncan misfortunes ; they saw before their eves 
the whole extent of their calamities ; and the absence of their wives and coil* 
dren afforded a melancholy proof that either death or captivity had been their 
lot. The lan^id spirit of the Vandals was at length awakened and united 
by the entreaties of their king, the example of Zano, and the instant danger 
which threatened their monarchy and religion. The militaiy strength of the 
nation advanced to battle ; and such was the rapkl increase, that before their 
army reached Tricameron, about twenty miles from Carthage, tbc^ might boasts 
perhaps with some exaggeration, that they surpassed, in a teofola proportion^ 
the diminutive powers of the Romans. jBut these poweis were under the 
command of Belisarius ; and, as be was conscious of their superior merit, he 
permitted the Barbarians to surprise bim at an anseasonable hour. The Romans 
were instantly under arms ; a rivulet covered their front ; the cavaliy Ibnned 
the first line, which Belisarius supported in the centre, at the bead of five 
hundred ^ards ; the infantry, at sonne distance, was posted in the second line f 
and the vigilance of the general watched the separate station and ambiguoas 
faith of the Massa^etse, who secretly reserved their aid for the cooaqerorB* 
The historian has inserted, and the reader may easily supply, the speedie8(f 1) 
of the commanders, who by ai]^uments the most apposite to their situation^ 
inculcated the importance of victory and the contempt of life* Zano, with 
the troops which had followed bim to the conquest of Sardinia, was placed in 
the centre ; and the throne of Genseric m^ht have stood, if the mnttitude of 
Vandals had imitated their intrepid resolution. Castiiv away their lanees and 
missile weapons, they drew their swords and expected tne cbaige : the Roman 
cavaliy thrice passed the rivulet ; they were thrice repulsed ; ana the conflict 
was firmly maintained, tfll Zano fell, and the slandara of Belisarius was dis- 
played. Gelimer retreated to his camp; ttie Huns joined the irarMiit; and 
(he victors despoiled the bodies of the slam. Yet no more than my Romans^ 
and eight hundred Vandals were found on the field of battle ; so inconsiderable 
was the carnage of a day, which extinguished a nation, and transferred the 
empire of Africa. In the evening, Belisarius led bis infentrf to the attack of 
the camp ; and the pusillanimous flight of Gelimer exposed tbe vanity of h» 
recent declarations, that to the vanquished death was a relief, like a burthen^ 
and infamy the only object of terror. His departure was secret ; but as soon 
as tbe Vandals discovered that their king had deserted tbem, they hastily dis* 
persed, anxious only for their personal safety, and careless of everjr oli^ect that 
IS dear or valuable to mankind. The Romans entered the camp wltbcwt resist* 
ance ; and the wildest scenes of disorder were veiled in the daricness and con* 
Aision of the ni(|;ht. Every Barbarian who met their swords was inhnmanly 
massacred ; their widows and daughters, as rich heirs, or beautiful concubines^ 
were embraced by the licentious soldiers ; and avarice itself was almost satiated 
with the treasures of ^Id and silver, the accumulated fruits of conquest or 
economy in a long period of prosperity and peace. In this frantic search, the 
troops even of Belisarius forgot their caution and respect. Intoxicated with 
lust and rapine, they explored in small parties, or alone, tbe acj^acent fields, 
the woods, the rocks, and the caverns, that mi^ht possibly conceal any desirable- 
prize : laden with booty, they deserted their ranks and wandered without a 
guide, on the high road to^Carihage : and if tbe fying eneinies bad dared to 
return, very few of the conooerors would have escaped. Deeply sensible of 
the disgrace and danger, Belisarius passed an apprehensive ni^t on the field 
of victoiy ; at the dawn of day, he planted his standard on a hill, recalled his 



(91) Tbepe orattom always exprvn tbe seiuw of tbe timet, and aomelUnea of tbe acton 
need that lene, and ibrowa away dcclamaikw. 



II 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. «t 

puxd$ and veterans, and gradually restored the modesty and obedience of the 
camp. It was equally the concern of the Roman general to subdue the ho«tii^^ 
and to save the prostrate fiarbarian : and the suppliant Vandals, who could 
be found only in churches, were protected by his authority, disanned, and 
separately confined, that they might neither disturb the public peace, nor 
become the Tktims of popular revenge. AAer despatching a light oetachment 
to tread the footsteps of uelimer, he advanced with his whole army about ten 
days* march, as far as Hippo Regius, which no longer possessed the relics of 
St Aogustin.fS2) The season, and the certain intelligence that the Vandal^ 
bad fled to the inaccessibie country of the Moors, determined Relisarius to 
lelinqui^h the vain pursuit, and to fii his winter quarters at Carthage. Fmnfe 
thence be despatched his principal lieutenant to inform the emperor, that in the 
space of three months, be had achieved the conquest of Africa. 

[A. D. 634.] Belisarius spoke the language of truth. The surviving Vandalr 
yielded, without resistance, their arms and their freedom : the neighbourhood 
of Carthaee submitted to bis presence ; and the nK>re distant provinces were- 
suooessiveiy subdued by the report of his victory. Tripoli was coniifirmed iir 
her vohmtary allegiance ; Sardinia and Corsica surrendered to an ofiicer, who 
cairied, instead « a sword, the head of the yaliant Zano ; and the isles of 
Majorca, Minorca, and Yvica, consented to remain an humble appendage of the 
Afiican kingdom. Caesarea, a royal city, which in looser geoerapl^y may be- 
confounded with the modem Algiers, was situate thirty days march to the 
westward of Carthage : by land, the road was infested by the Moors, but the 
sea was open, and tlie Romans were now masters of the sea. An active and 
discreet tribune sailed as far as the Strait!, where he occupied Septem or 
Ceuta,(^) which rises opposite to Gibraltar on the African coast : that remote- 
place was afterward adonied and fortiBed by Justinian ; and he seems to haver 
mdttlged the vain ambition of extending his empire to the columns of Hercules. 
He leoeived the messengers of victory at the time when he was preparing to 
publish the pandects of the Roman law ; and the devout or jealous emperor' 
celebrated the divine goodness, and confessed, in silence, the merit of his sue* 
cessftti general.(S4) Impatient to a(x>lish the temporal and spiritual tyranriy 
of the Vandals, lie nroceeded without delay, to the full establishment of the 
Catholic church. Her jurisdiction, wealth, and immunities, perhaps the mosf 
essential part of episcopal religion, were restored and amplified with a liberal 
band ; the Arian worship was suppressed ; the Donatist meetings were pro* 
scribed ;(35^ and the synod of Cartha^, by the voice of two nondred and. 
seyenteen bi8hops,(S6) applauded the just measure of pious retaliation. 0» 
such an occasion, it may not be presumed that many orthodox prelates wer& 
absent : but the comparative smailness of their number, which in ancient coan 
cils had been twice or even thrice multiplied, most clearly indicates the decay 
both of the church and state. While Justinian approved himself the defender 
of the faith, he entertained an ambitious hope, that bis victorious lieutenant 
would speedily enlaige the narrow limits of bis dominion to the space whictk 
they occupied before the invasion of the Moors and Vandals ; ana Belisariur 

fSi) The fBlies of 8l AugoMlo wera tarried by the Africmn bbbope to their Sentinlan exile (A.TK 
MO) ; and it wae beUsved la Um vllltto eeniory diet Liatprend, Unc of the Looiberdi, trempoited thein< 
(A. D. TSIO frona Sardinia to Favla. In Uie year 160S, the Augiwtin rriara of that dtyfoumd a brick arch, . 
marble ecmin, illver caae, Mk wrapper, bonen, bloody ftc., and perhape an inacripUon of Agrwtliio Itv 
Geihie letlara. But thia oaerttl diMovery has been dtopuled by reaaon and jealoaay. (Daronlua, Aoaarj. 
A. D. 79S» So. 3-9. TiUemonL Mem. Eoetan lom. zliL p. 944. Montfkiioon, Dtaritun luL p^ SS-aou. 
Maratorj, ADtiq. Ital. Hedii Mvi^ tom. v. disMrt. Ivilijp. 9, who had compoeed a Mparate treatlsu beTone 
the decree of the bishop of Pavia, and Pope Benedict XIIL) 

(SI) Ta rns «oAircf a; trpoM^ut, Is theexprearion of Proeopliis (de EdiSe. I. Iv. e. 7). Ceata, which hm 
been defined by the Portof uese, floarlshed In noMes and palaces, in agriculture and manufaetures, midea 
the more prosperous reign of the Arabs (PAfrique de Marniol. tom. II. p. S36). 

(U) Bee the second and third preambles to the Digest, or Pandects, promulgated A D. 533, I>eceB»> 
her id. To the titles of yamdaUeut and jafriewtM*^ Justinian, or rather Beltoarias, bail acquired a 'use 
claim : OotkicuM was premature, and Franeieu* false, and oflhnslve to a great nation- 

(SS) See the original acts In Baronios (A. D. 535, Na 31—54). The emperor applauds hti own ctemeaCF 
to Uie heretice. cum sulliciat els vivere. 

(98) Dupin (Geograph. Sacra Africans, p. Ilx. and Optat Mtter.') observes and bewails this epiwipaf 
teay. In the more nrosperoos age of the church, he had noticed OBO bishopries; but however mtnulft 
wum the dioocaaes, It la not probaUe that they oil ex isted at the same tbne. 

F2 



48 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

was instructed to establish 6ve dvkes or commanders in the convenient statiom 
of Tripolii Leptis, Cirta, Cssarea, and Sardinia, and to compute the militaiy 
force of paJatiMi or borderers that might be sufficient for the defence of Africa. 
The kingdom of the Vandals was not unworthy of the presence of a prstorian 
4pr8efect : and four consulars, three presidents, were appointed to admmister the 
fieven provinces under his civil jurisdiction. The number of their subordinate 
officers, clerks, messengers, or assbtants, was minutely expressed ; three hun- 
<lred and ninety-six for the praefect himself, fifty for each of his vicegerents ; 
and the rigid definition of their fees and salaries was more effectual to confirm 
the right, man to prevent the abuse. These magistrates might be oppressive, 
but they were not idle : and the subtle questions of justice and rev nue were 
infinitely propagated under the new government, which professed to revive the 
freedom and equity of the Roman republic. The conqueror was solicitous to 
£xact a prompt and plentiful supply from his African subjects ; and he allowed 
fltbem to claim even m the thirdf degree, and from the coflateral line, the bouses 
and lands of which their families had been unjustly despoiled by the Vandals 
After the departure of Belisarius, who acted by a hign and special commis- 
4iion, no ordinary provision was made for a master-general of the forces ; but 
the office of praetorian praefect was intrusted to a soldier; the civil and mili- 
tary powers were united, according to the practice of Justinian, in the chief 
governor : and the representative of the emperor in Africa as well as in Italy, 
jvas soon distinguished by the appellation of Exarch. (27) 

Yet the conquest of Africa was imperfect, till her former sovereign was 
^ielivered, either alive or dead, into the hands of the Romans. Doubtful of 
the event, Gelimer had given secret orders that a part of his treasure should be 
transported to Spain, where he hoped to find a secure refuge at the court ti 
the king of the Visifoths. But these intentions were disappointed by acci- 
dent, treachery, and me indefatigable pursuit of his enemies, who intercepted 
his flight from the sea-shore, ana chased the unfortunate monarch, with some 
faithful followers, to the inaccessible mountain of Papua,^8) in the inland 
country of Numidia. He was immediately besieged by r haras, an officer 
4vho3e truth and sobriety were the more applauded, as such qualities could be 
seldom found among the Heruli, the most corrupt of the Barbarian tribes. To 
ihis vigilance Belisarius had intrusted this important charge : and, after a bold 
attempt to scale the mountain, in which he lost a hundred and ten soldiers, 
JE'haras expected, during a winter siege, the operation of distress and famine on 
the mind of the Vandal king. From the softest habits of pleasure, from the 
unbounded command of industry and wealth, he was reduced to share the 
povert3r of the Moors,(29) supportable only to themselves by their ij^rance of 
a happier condition. In their rude hovels, of mud and hurdles, which confined 
4be smoke and excluded the light, they promiscuously slept on the ground, 
perhaps on a sheep-skin, with their wives, their children, and their cattle 
Sordia and scanty were their garments ; the use of bread and wine was un- 
Icnown ; and their oaten or barley cakes, imperfectly baked in the ashes, were 
devoured almost in a crude state by the huneiy savages. The health of Geli- 
cner must have sunk under these strange and unwonted hardships, from what- 
•fioever cause they had been eiKlured : but his actual misery was imbittered by 
Ihe recollection of past greatness, the daily insolence of his protectors, and the 
just apprehension, that the light and venal Moors might be tempted to betray 
the rignts of hospitality. The knowledge of bis situation dictated the humarje 
and friendly epistle ot Pharas. *' Like yourself," said the chief of the Heruli, 
^ I am an illiterate Barbarian, but I speak the language of plain sense, and an 
honest heart. Why will you persist in hopeless obstinacy ? Why will you 



(97) The Aflriean lawi of Jnitlnlan an iUustrated by his German btograplier (Cod. 1. 1 tit. 37. NotbD. 
36,37.131,Vll.Ju«Unian,p.34J>-3T7). 

(88) Mount Paima is placod by d'Anvltle (lorn. Hi. p. 08, ai^ "" " * • "" '^ " 

Beg iu8 and Uie lea ; yet thia iltnaUon ill afrees with the loi 
^mcopiue (L H. c. 4), cv rots Nvfii^uv wxanots.* 

(89) Bhaw (Travelfli p. »0,) most accurately repremnta th< 
llie laat of whom, by their languafe, are the remnant of the 1 
flheN Modea aaTBiei :— pro?laioiis are plenty among them, a 



(%) Mount Papua is placod by d'AnvllIe (torn. iti. p. 08, and Tabul. Imp. Rom. Occident) near Hippo 
Segiue and Uie lea ; yet thia altuaUon ill agrees with the long purauii beyond Hippo, and the wordi of 
^rocopma (L H. c. 4), tv rots Nvfii^uv t^x^mis.* 

' — -"" I the mannen of the Bedoweena and Kabylea, 

^3 Moora ; yet how changed— how ciTiUaea art 
, and bread le oommou 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. (f 

nin yourself, your family, and nation ? The lore of freedom and abhorrence 
of slavery? Alas! my dearest Gclimer, are you not already the worst of 
slaves, the slave of the vile nation of the Moors ? Would it not be preferable 
to sustain at Constantinople a life of poverty and servitude, rather than to re^ 
the undoubted monarch of the mountain of rapua ? Do you think it a disgrace 
to be the subject of Justinian ? Belisarius is his subject ; and we ourselves, 
whose birth is not infenor to your own, are not ashamed of our obedience to 
the Roman emperor. That generous prince will grant you a rich inheritance iA 
lands, a place m the senate, and the dignity of patrician : such are his mcious 
intentions, and you may depend with full assurance on the word of Belisarius* 
So long as Heaven has condemned us to suffer, patience is a virtue ; but if we 
reject the i>roffered deliverance, it degenerates mto blind and stupid despair.**" 
" I am not insensible," replied the king of the Vandals, '' bow kind and rational 
18 your advice. Buf I cannot persuade myself to become the slave of an unjust 
enemy, who has deserved my implacable hatred. Him I had never injured 
either by word or deed : yet he has sent ajcainstme, I know not from whence, 
a certain Belisarius, who nas cast me beaolong from ihe throne into this abys9 
of misery. Justinian is a man ; he is a prince ; does he not dread for himself 
a similar reverse of fortune ? I can write no more : my grief oppresses me.. 
Send me, I beseech you, my dear Pharas, send me a lyre,(30) a sp^Hige, and » 
loaf o( bread." From the Vandal messenger, Pharas was informed of the 
motives of this singular request. It was long since the king^ of Africa had tasted 
bread ; a defluxion bad fallen on his eyes, the effect of fati^e or incessant 
weeping ; and he wished to solace the melancholy hours, by singing to the lyre 
the sad story of bis own misfortunes. The. humanity of Pharas was moved ; 
he sent the three extraordinary gifU : but even his humanity prompted him to* 
redouble the vig-ilance of his guard, that he might sooner eompiel his prisoner to 
embrace a resolution advantageous to the Romans, but salutary to himself! 
The obstina<7 of Geliraer at length yielded to reason and necessity ; the* 
sdemn assurances of safety and honourable treatment were ratified in tbe em- 
peror's name, by the ambassador of Belisarius : and tbe king of the Vandaly 
descended from the mountain. The first public interview was in one of tbe 
suburbs of Carthage ; and when the royal captive accosted his conqueror, he 
burst into a fit of hiughter. The crowu might naturally believe, that extreme 
grief had deprived Gelimer of his senses ; but in this mournful state, unseason- 
able mirth insinuated to more intelligent observers, that the vain and transitoiy 
scenes of human greatness are unworthy of a serious tbou^bt.(31) 

Their contempt was soon justified by a new example of a vulgar truth ; that 
flattery adheres to power, and envy to superior merit. The chiefs of the Romaic 
army presumed to think themselves the rivals of a hero. Their private de- 
spatches maliciously affirmed, that the conqueror of Africa, strong in his repu* 
tation and the public love, conspired to seat himself on tbe throne of the Van- 
dals. Justinian listened with too patient an ear : and his silence was the result 
of jealousy rather than of confidence. An honourable alternative, of remaining 
in the province, or of returning to the capital, was indeed submitted to the 
discretion of Belisarius ; but he wisely concluded from intercepted letters, and 
the knowledge of his sovereign's temper, that he must either resign his head^ 
erect his standard, or confound bis enemies by bis presence and submission. 
Innocence and courage decided bis choice : his guards, captives, and treasures,. 
were diligently embarked ; and so prosperous was the navigation, that bis arrival 
at Constantinople preceded any certain account of his departure from the porl 
of Carthage. Such unsuspectme loyalty removed the apprehensions of Justi- 
nian : envy was silenced and inflamed by the public gratitude ; and the third 

(30) B7 Procopiai it i« styM a lyre ; perhaps harp would have beon more naUonal. Tbe iDMrumeMi 
of nraalc are ttaoa dietlogutehed by venantlus Fortanatua : 

Romannsque Ifrd iM plaudat, Barbami kmr^. 

(31) Herodotoa elofantly deacribes tbe itranse effecu of grief in another royal captive, PBammeticha* 
of EeHM, wbo wept at the least, and waa lilent at the greatest of hia calamities (1. Hi. c. 14; In the 
failavlew of Paulas iEmUiiis and Peraes, Belisarius might study his part ; but it is probable Uiat -^ m«« 
read eblier Uvy or Plalarch ; and it ii certain that his generoalty did not seed a tutor. 



90 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Alncanua obtained the honours of a triumph, a ceremony which the citj 6k 
Constantinople had never seen, and which ancient Kome, since the reign of 
Tiberius, had reserved for the oiiaptaotis arras of the Cesars.(3S) From the 
|»alace of Belisariu^ the proceasioo was conducted through the principal streeti 
lo the hippodrooie, and this menM»able day seemed to avenge the imuries of 
Oenaeric, and to expiate the shame of the Romans. The wealth of nations 
was displayed, the trophies of martial or effeminate luxury ; rich armour, golden 
thrones, and the chariots of state which had been used by the Vandal queen ; 
the massy furniture of the royal banquet, the splendour of precious stones, the 
elegant forms of statues and vases, the more substantial treasure of gvdd, and 
the holy vessels of the Jewish temple, which aAer their long peregrination, 
were Kspectfully deposited in the Christian church of Jerusalem. A fong train 
4>f the Qoblest Vandals reluctantly exposed their lofty stature and manly counte- 
nance. Gelimer slowly advanced : be was clad in a purple robe, and still 
maintained the majestjr of a king. Not a tear escaped mm his eyes, not a 
«^h was beard ; but hb pride or piety derived some secret consolation irooi 
tte words of Solomon,(33) which he repeatedly pronounced, vaiiitt! ▼ahittI 
ALL IS TANiTT I losteadf of ascendioc a triumphal car drawn by four bones or 
elephants, the^nnodest conjqueror manmed on foot at the head ot his iHave com- 
panions : his prudence might decline an honour too conspicuous for a subject : 
and his magnanimity n^cnt justly disdain what had been so often sullied by 
.he vilest of tyrants. The glorious procession entered the gate of the hippo- 
drome ; was saluted by the acclamations of the senate and people ; and halted 
neibre the throne where Justinian and Theodora were seated to receive the 
IxHnage of the captive monarch and the victorious hero. They both performed 
the customary tfdoration; and falliiv prostrate on the ground, respectfully 
touched the footstool of a prince who nad not unsheathed nis sword, and of a 
prostitute, who had danced on the theatre : some g[entle violence was used to 
bend the stubborn spirit of the grandson of Gensenc ; and however trained to 
^servitude, the genius of Belisarius must have secretly rebelled. He was imme- 
diatelv declared consul for the ensuing year, and the day of his inauguration 
resemoled the pomp of a second triumph : his curule chair was home aloft on 
the shoulders of captive Vandals ; and the spoils of war, gold cups, and rich 
girdles, were profusely scattered among the populace. 

But the purest reward of Belisarius was in the faithful execution of a treaty 
for which bis honour had been pledged to the king of the Vandals. The reli- 
gious scruples of Gelimer, who adhered to the Arian heresy, were incompatible 
with the dignity of senator or patrician : but he received from the emperor ar. 
ample estate in the province ot Galatia, where the abdicated monarch retired 
with his family and friends, to a life of peace, of affluence, and perhaps of con- 
tent. (34) The daughters of Hilderic were entertained with the respectful ten- 
4lemess due to their a^e and misfortune ; and Justinian and Theodora accepted 
the honour of educating and enriching the female descendants of the great 
Theodosius. The bravest of the Vandal youth were distributed into 6ve 
equadmns of cavalry, which adopted the name of their benefactor, and supported 
in the Persian wars the gloiy oftheir ancestors. But these rare exceptions, the 
reward of birth or valour, are insufficient to explain the fate of a nation, whose 
numbers, before a short and bloodless war, amounted to more than six hundred 
thousand persons. After the exile of their kinr and nobles, the servile crowd 
might purchase their safety, by abjuring their diaracter, religion, and language; 

(3S) AOer Uw title of tayavt^r had l<Mt Um old mllitvyWDM, ud Uie Ionian mmtyieet were abolMied 
ky ChrlsUanfiy (vee la Bleierie, Mem. de TAcademle, tom. xzi. p. 308—338), a trtiimpli mifht be flvea 
'Wlih leM inoonsietency to a private general. 

(33) If the Eccleniastee be truly a work of Bokmon, and not, like Prior*! poem, a ploua and moiml com- 
jKMltlon of more recent timee, In hla name, and on the rabjeet of hit repentance. The latter to Um opinion 
of the learncMl and free tpirited Grotlua (Op. Theokif. tom. i. p. 856); and indeed the Ecelertaatea 
and Provcrba display a Iaii|er conpaaa of tbootht and ezperienca than aeem to belong either to a Jew 
or a kinK.* 

(34) In the BeUaaire of Marmontel, tbe king and the conqueror of Africa meet, aup, and convene, 
wUhoui n>collectin8 each other. It la aiurely a fkult of Uiat romance, that not only the hero» hot all to 
wlioin lie bad been ao conapicuooaly known, appear to bare loat their eyea or their Memorv. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. n 

ttkd tbeir degeneirate postenhr would be insensiblj minified with the commeB 
^erd of African subjects. Yet even in the present 9ze, and in the heart of the 
Mooriah tribes^ a curious traveller has discovered the white complexion and 
tong flaxen hair of a northern race ;(35) and it was formerly believed^ that the 
boldest of the Vandals fled beyond the power, or even the knowledge, of the 
•Romansy to enjoy their solitary freedom on the shores of the Atlantic ocean.(3() 
Africa had been their empire, it became tbeir prison ; nor could they< entertaia 
a hope or even a wish, of returning to the banks of the Elbe, where their 
brethren^ of a spirit less adventurous, still wandered in their native forests. It 
was impossible for cowards to surmount the barriers of unknown seas and hoe- 
tile BaroarianB : it was iinpossible for brave men to expose their nakedness and 
defeat before the eyes ot their countnrmen, to describe the kingdoms which 
■<they had lost, and to claim a share of the httmble inheritance, which, in a hap- 
pier hour, they had almost unanimously renounced.(37) In the country between 
the Elbe and the Oder, several populous villages of Lusatia are inhabited by 
the Vandals: they still preserve their langus^, their custoroa^ and the purity 
'^ their bkx>d : support, with some impatience, the Saxon or Prussian joke ; and 
serve with secret and voluntary allegiance, the descendants of their ancient kings, 
who in his garb and present lortune is confounded with the meanest of bis vas- 
-^011.(38) The name and situation of this unhappy people might indicate their 
descent from one common stock with the conquerors of Africa. But the use oi 
the Sclavonian dialect more clearly represents them as the last remnant of the 
oew colonies, who succeeded to the genuine Vandals, already scattered or de- 
-etroyed in the age of Procopius.( 39) 

[a. D. 636.] If Belisarius haa been tempted to hesitate in his allegiance, be 
Dught have uised, even against the emperor himself, the indispensable du^ of 
leaving Africa fiom an enemy more barbarous than the Vandals. The origin of 
wthe Moors is involved in darkness : they were ignorant of the use of letters.(40) 
Their limits cannot be precisely defined : a boundless continent was open to 
the Libyan shephe^; the changes of seasons and pastures regulated their 
motioBs; and their rude favia and slender furniture were transported with the 
•same ease as their arras, tbair families, and their cattle, which consisted of 
•sheep, oxen, and camels.(41) During the vigour of th^ Roman power, they 
observed a respectful distance from Carthage and the sea-shore ; under the 
feeble rmgn of the Vandals, they invaded the cities of Numidia, occupied the 
sea-Goast ikmii Tangier to Caesarea, and pitched their camps with impunity in 
4be fertile province of Byzacium. The formidable strength and artful conduct 
-of Belisarius secured the neutrality of the Moorish princes, whose vanity anpiied 
'to receive, in the emperor's name, the ensigns of their regal dignity.(42} They 

C3S) Shmw, p. SO. Td, since Procopliu (I. il. e. 13,) ipealoi of a people of mount Atlu, m already 
dbtinguieheil by white bodies and yellow hair, tlie phenomenon (which h likewise visible in the Andes 
of Peru, BaAm, torn. lU. p. 9M,) niay naturaUy be aeeribed to tiie elevation of the groand and Uie tem^ 
pamtiire of tke air. 

(38) The geographer of Ravenna (1. ill. c. xl. p. 199, 130, 131. Paris, 1088,) describes the Mauritania 
Oaditamm (opposite to Cadiz), abi gens Vandaloram, a Belisario devieta in Africd, fugit, et nnnquam 

" TfflWpi i m lT 

(3t) A singte voice had protested, and Geneerie dismissed, without a formal answer, the Vandals of 
O s iui any; but those of Africa derided his prudence, and afibcted to despise the poverty of their Ibreeta 
CPfoeopliM, Vandal, I. L c SS). , 

(aS) Fron the mouth of Uie great elector (In 1087), Tollus describes the secret royalty and rabeUkHM 
qdrit of the Vandals of Braodenburgh, who could muster five or six thousand soldiers who had nrocured 
•ooie eaimoD, dtc (Itinerar. Hunger, p. 4S, apod Dubos, Hist, de la Monarchic Fransolse, torn. i. p. IflS, 
')83). Tbe voracity, set of the eledor, but of Tolllus hlmsel/, may Justly be suspected.* 

(39) Procopiiis (I. L c. 92.) was in total darltnese— g^t fivviai 7ts »6s ovofia ts qts nt^at. Under the 
reijpi of Dafobert (A.D. 830), the Sclhvontan tribes of the Sorbl and Venedi already boarded on the 
Thnriafia (Maaeoo, Hist of the Germans^ xv. 3, 4, S). 

(40) SalhMt represents tbe Moors as a remnant of tbe army of Heraelee (de JML Jngnrth. c. 91), aai 
PraeopfiM (VandaL 1. il. c 10), as' the posterity of the Cananeans who flsd from the robber Joshaa 
(XjTvnff) . lie quotes two columns, with a PhanieiaB ineeripUon. I believe in the colnmne— I doubt tha 
Inscnadon— and I reieetth^ pcdlgree.t 

(41) VirgU (Oeorgle. ill. A) and Pomponluf Mela (i. 8,) describe the wandering lifis of the AfHcaa 
abri>iMnia, eiaaliar to that of tbe Arabs and Tartan; and Shaw (p. 999,) Is tbe best commentator on tha 
poet and the geograjrfier. 

(49) The euaiomary gHW were a sceptre, a crtywa or cap, a white eloak, a figured tunic and shoes, all 
■adpiusd wish gold and sUvar; nor were these preeioua metals lass aeceptabie la the shape of eeln (Proeagfc 
Randal. L L c »). 



« THE DECLINE AND FALL 

were astonished by the rapid event, and trembled in the presence of their conr 
queror. But his approacnine departure soon relieved the apprehensions of a 
savage and superstitious people ; the number of their wives allowed them to 
disregard the safety of their infant hostages ; and when the Roman general 
hoisted sail in the port of Carthage, he heard the cries, and almost beheld the 
flames, of the desolated province. Yet he persisted in his resolution ; and 
leaving only a part of his guards to reinforce the feeble garrisons, he intrusted 
the command of Africa to the eunuch Solomon,(43) who proved himself not 
unvi^orth^ to be the successor of Belisarius. In the orst invasion, some detach- 
ments, with two officers of merit, were surprised and intercepted : but Solomon 
speedily assembled his troops, marched from Carthage into the heart of the 
country, and in two great battles destroyed sixty thousand of the Barbarians. 
The Moors depended on their multitude, their swiftness, and their inaccessible 
mountains : and the aspect and smell of their camels are said to have produced; 
some confusion in the Roman cava]iy.(44) But as soon as they were com- 
manded to dismount, they derided this contemptible obstacle ; as soon as the 
columns ascended the hills, the naked and disorderly crowd was dazzled by 
glittering arms and regular evolutions ; and the menace of their female prophets 
was repeatedly fulfilled, that the Moors should be discomfited by a heardUu 
antagonist, lite victorious eunuch advanced thirteen days* iouiney from Car- 
thage, to besiege mount Aurasius,(46^ the citadel, and at tne same time the 
garaen of Numidia. That range of hills, a branch of the Great Atlas, contains,, 
within a circumference of one hundred and twenty miles, a rare variety of eoih 
and climate ; the intermediate valleys and elevated plains abound with ricb- 
|>asture8, perpetual streams^ and fruits of a delicious taste and uncommon mag- 
nitude. This fair solitude is decorated with the ruins of Lambesa, a Roman- 
city, once the seat of a legion, and the residence of forty thousand inhabitants. 
The Ionic temple of .£sculapius is encompassed with Moorish huts : and the- 
cattle now ?raze in the midst of an amphitheatre, imder the shade of Corinthian 
columns. A sharp perpendicular rock rises above the level of the mountain,, 
where the African princes deposited their wives and treasure ; and a proverb 
is familiar to the Arabs, that the man may eat fire, who dares to attack the- 
craggy cl itk and inhospitable natives of mount Aurasius. This hardy enterprise 
was twice attempted by the eunuch Solomon : from the first, he retreated witb 
•ome diserace ; and in the second, his patience and provisions were almost 
ezhaustea; ana he must again have retired, if he had not yielded to the im- 
petuous courage of his troops, who audaciously scaled, to the astonishment of 
the Moors, the mountain, the hostile camp, and the summit of tire Geminian*. 
rock. A citadel was erected to secure this important con(|uest, and to remind 
the Barbarians of their defeat ; and as Solomon pursued his march to the west, 
the long-lost province of Mauritania Sitifi was again annexed to the Roman, 
empire. The Moorish war continued several years after the departure of Beli- 
sanus ; but the laurels which he resigned to a faithful lieutenant, may be justly 
ascribed to his own triumph. 

The experience of past faults, which may sometimes correct the mature age 
of an individual, is seldom profitable to the successive generations of mankiiKl^. 
The nations of antiquity, careless of each other's safety, were separately van— 
ouished and enslaved by the Romans. This awful lesson might have instructed 
the Barbarians of the West to oppose, with timely counseS and confederate? 
arms, the unbounded ambition of Justinian. Yet the same error was repeated* . 

(43) See tb« African goreromeot tnd warftre of Sokxnon, !n Prooopina (yandal. I. U. c 10, 11, IS, 13: 
M, 90). He was recalled and again reatoced ; and hit laat victoiy dates in tin zliitli year of Justinian 
CA. D. 539). An accident in bis ebiMhood had rendered liim a eunuch (I. i. c. 11), the other Roaaaik' 
fanerals were amply furnished with beards, nvovo; ntirXantvot (I. ii. c 8). 

(44) This natural antipathy of the horse for the camel, is aiRrmed by the ancients (Xenopboa. Cyropvd. 
I. Ti. p. 438, 1. vli. n. 483. 48S, edit. Hutchinson. Polycn. Stratagem, vii. 6. Plin. Hisc NaL tUL 98. 
iBIian de Natur. Animal. L iii. c. 7) ; but it is disapproved by daily eipcrience, and derided by the best. 
Judffes, the Orientals (Vc^age d'Olearius, p. 553). 

(45) Proeopius to the fint who describes mount Aurasiua (Vandal. I. ii. c. 13, De Edific I. vi. c 7). H* 
nay be compared with Leo Africanua. (dcU Africa, parte ▼. in Ramasio, torn. I. foL 77, recioO Marmofci 
<»Dm. U. p. 430.) and 8haw (p. 56-59). 



OF THE ROMAN £MP1R£. 73. 

Ibe fame conse^jences were felt^ and the Goths, both of Italy and Spain^ 
mensible of their approaching danger, beheld with indifference, and even with 
JQT, the rapid downfall of the VaiKtals. After the failure of the royal line, 
Tbeudes, a valiant and powerful chief, ascended the throne of Spain, which he 
had formerly administered in the name of Theodoric and his infant grandson. 
Under his command the Visigoths besieged the fortress of Ceuta on the African 
coast: but while they spent the Sabbath-day in peace and devotion, the pious 
aeamtj of their camp was invaded by a sally from the town, and the king 
liimsel^ with some difficulty and dai^r, escaped from the hands of a sacri- 
legious enemy.(46) It was not long before his pride and resentment were 
|;ratified by a suppliant embassy from the unfortunate Gelimer, who implored, 
in his distress, the aid of the Spanish monarch. But instead of sacrificing these 
unworthy passions to the dictates of generosity and prudence, Tbeudes amused 
the ambassadors, till he was secretly informed of the loss of Carthage, and 
then dismissed them with obscure and contemptuous advice, to seek m their 
native countiy a true knowledge of the state of the Vandal8.(47) The lone 
continuance of the Italian war delayed the punishment of the Visi^ths; and 
the eyes of Tbeudes were closed blefore they tasted the fruits of his mistaken 
policy. After his death, the sceptre of Spain was disputed by a civil war* 
The weaker candidate solicited the protection of Justmian, and ambitiously 
subscribed a treaty of alliance, which deeply wounded the independence and 
happiness of his ooiintiT. Several cities, ooth on the ocean and the Mediter-- 
nnean, were ceded to the Roman troops^ who afterward refused to evacuate 
those pledges, as it should seem, either of safety or payment ; and as they were 
foitified by perpetual supplies from Africa, they maintained their impregnable 
statkxiB, for the mischievous purpose of inflaming the civil and religious factions. 
of the Barbarians. Seventy Tears elapsed before this painful thorn could be- 
extirpated from the boeom of the nnonaichy ; and as long as the emperors retained 
any share of these remote and useless poesessionB, tneir vanity might number 
Spain in the list of their provinces, and the successors of Alanc in the rank of 
their vas8als.(48) 

The error of tne Goths who reigned in Italy was less excusable than that of 
their Spanish brethren, and their punishment was still more immediate and 
terrible. From a motive of private revenge, they enabled their most dangerous. 
enemy to destroy their most valuable ally. A sister of the great Theiodoric 
had been given m marriage to Thrasimond the African king :U9) on this occa- 
sion the fortress of Lilyboeum(60) in Sicily was resigned to tne Vandals : and 
the princess Amalafrida was attended by a martial train of one thousand nobles . 
and five thousand Grothic soldiers who signalized their valour in the Moorish 
wars. Their merit was over-rated by tMmselves, and perhaps neglected hr 
the Vandals : they viewed the country with envy, and the conquerors with- 
disdain ; but their real or fictitious conspiracy was prevented by a massacre l 
the Goths were oppressed, and the captivity of Amalafrida was soon followed 
by her secret and suspicious death. The eloquent pen of Cassiodorius was 
employed to reproach the Vandal court with the cruel violation of eveiy social 
ana public duty ; but the ven^ance which he threatened in the name of his 
sovereign, might be derided with impunity, as long as Africa was protected by 
the sea, and the Goths were destitute of a navy. In the blind impotence of 
grief and indignation, they joyfully saluted the approach of the Romans, enter^ 

(46) bidor. Chnm. p. 789, edit Qrot Mwriftoa, Hlit Hiqwi. I. v. e. 8, p. 173. Tet. aeeordlng to M- 
doie, the rics* ofGeota, and Um detth of Theudo, Happened A. iE.B.S88, A. D. MB; and Um piacoi 
was defended, not by tbe Vandals, but by the Romans. 

(47) Proeopiua, Vandal L 1. c 94. 

(48) See the original Chronlde of Udoie, and tbe flfth and iizUi book* of the Hiitonrof Spain by 
Hariaoa. The Bomam wefe finally expelled by SalntUa, king of the VidgoChi (A. D. OSl-OW), altef 
their reonlott to the CSatholic ehurch. 

(40) See Um marriage and Ihte of Amalafrida in Proeoploe (Vandal. 1. 1. e. 8, 9), and tn Cecrio- 
doriw (Vte. ix. 1), the eipoetulatkio of her royal brother. Compare likewise the Chronicle of Victor 



iSO) Lliybmim wm built by the Carthagintauie, CHymp. zct. 4 ; and in the first Panic war, a 
tfM Mid ooollairt hvbooi iwdend Uiat place u inpoiiant obitect to boUi naUoM. 



U TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

tained the fleet of Belisarius in the ports of Sicily, and were speedily deljglite4 
or alarmed by the surprisiM^ inteliigencey that their ieveng;e was executed 
beyond the measare of their hopes, or perhaps of their wishes. To their 
friend5bip the emperor was indebted for the kira;doin of Africa, and the Gotbi 
might reasonably think, that they were entitleof to resume the possession of a 
barren rock, so recently separated as a nuptial giA from the island of Sicily. 
They were soon undeceived by the haughty mandate of Belisarius, which 
excited their tardy and unavailing repentance. ** The citr and promontorv of 
Lilybeum." said the Roman general, ** belonged to the Vandals, and I claim 
them by the right of conquest. Your submissioQ may deserve the favour of 
4he emperor ; your obstinacy will provoke his displeasore, and must kindle a 
war, that can terminate only in your utter ruin. IT you compel us to take up 
arms, we shall contend, not to rerain the possession of a smgle city, but to 
deprive you of all the provinces which you unjustly withhold from their lawful 
sovere^n.'* A nation of two hundred thousand aoldien might have smiled at 
the vain menace of Justinian and his lieutenant ; but a spait of discord and 
•disaflectron prevailed in Italy, and the Goths supported, with reluctaoce* the 
indignity of a female reign.(51) 

The birth of Amaiasontha, the regent and oueen of Ital7.(52) united the two 
most illustrious families of the Barbarians. Her mother, the sister of Clovis, 
-was descended from the low-haired kings of the Meraumgian race ;(&3) and 
the regal succession of the AmaH was illustrated in the eleventh ceneratioo, by 
her father, the great Theodoric, whose merit might have ennobled a plebeian 
origin. The sex of his daughter excluded her from the Gothic throne ; but his 
vigilant tenderness for his family and his people discovered the last heir of the 
royal line, whose ancestors had taken refi^ in Spain ; and the fortunate 
Eutharic was suddenly exalted to the rank of a consul and a prince. He 
•enjoyed only a short time the charms of Amalasontha, and the boqpes of the 
eucccssion ; and his widow, after the death of her husband and father, was left 
the guardian of her son Athalaric, and the kingdom of Italy. At the i^ ot 
about twenty-eight years, the endowments of her mind and person had attained - 
'their perfect matuntjr. Her beauty, which, in the apprehension of Theodora 
berselt, might have disputed the conquest of an empenn^ was animated by 
manly sense, activity, and resolution. Education and experience had cultivated 
her talents ; her phik)sophic studies were exempt from vanity ; and» though 
«he expressed herself with equal elegance and ease in the Greek, the Latin, 
and the Gothic tongues, the daughter of Theodoric maintained in her coooseb a 
•discreet and impenetrable silence. By a faithful imitation of the virtues, she 
revived the prosperity, of his reign : while she strove, with pious care, to 
expiate the raults and to obliterate the darker memory of his declining age 
The children of Boethius and Symmachus were restored to their paternal 
inheritance : her extreme lenity never consented to inflict any corporeal or 
pecuniary penalties on her Roman subjects ; and she generously despised the 
clamours of the Goths, who, at the end of forty years, still considered the 
people of Italy as their slaves or their enemies. Her salutafy measures were 
directed by the wisdom, and celebrated by the eloquence, of Cassiodorius ; 
she solicited and deserved the friendship of the em|>eror ; and the kii^doms of 
Europe respected, both in peace and war, the majesty of the Gothic throne. 
But the future happiness of the queen of Italy depended on the education of 
her son ; who was destined, by his birth, to suppNort the different and almost 
incompatible characters of the chief of a Barbarian camp, and the first magia- 
trate of a civilized nation. From the age of ten years,(54) Athalaric y — 



(51) Compare Um diiftranr paMagesorProeopliM (Vandal, t. H. c. 5, GoUile. 1. 1. c. 3). 

(99) For the reign and character of Amalaaontha, «ee FroeopliM (QolhU. I. i. c. 9, 3, 4, and Anecdot a. 
16, with the Note* of Alemonnue), Castodoriin (V^r. viil. Iz. x. and zi. 1,) and Jomanden (de Reboi 
Oedcli, c. 90, and de Sueceaiione RegnoraiA', tv Muratori, torn, I. p. 941). 

(S3) The marriage of Theodoric with Aadjefcda, the aiater of Cnorla, roafbe ptaeed In Uie Tear dSOL 
«oon after the conquest of Italy (de BoaL Rtet. dra Peu^ea,4oai. iz. p. S13). The nopdalaof fiotbarie 
-and Amalaeontha were celebrated In 515 (Caaelodor. In Ohron. p. 458). 

(fit) At the death of Theodoric, his frandaonAttelaric Is dSMilbed by Procoplaa m a togr about ai|kl 



OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. 7^ 

diligently instructed in Ibe arts and sciences, either useful or ornamental for a 
Roman prince ; and three venerable Goths were chosen to instil the principles 
of honour and virtue into the mind of their young king. But the pupil who is 
insensible of the benefits, roust abhor the restraints, of education ; and the soli* 
dtude of the queen, which affection rendered anxious and severe, offended the 
iintractable nature of her son and his subjects. On a solemn festival, when the 
Goths were assembled in the palace of Ravenna, the royal youth escaped from 
bis mother's apartment, ajnd, with tears of pride and anger, complained of a 
blow which his stubborn disobedience bad provoked her to inflict The Bar- 
barians resented the indignity which had been offered to their kiag, accused the 
regent of conspiring against his life and crown ; and imperiously demanded, 
that the grandson ot Theodoric should be rescued from the dastardly discipline 
of women and pedants* and educated, like a valiant Goth, in the society of his 
equals, and the glorious ignorance of his ancestors. To this rude clamour, 
importunately urged as the voice of the nation, Amaksontba was compelled to 
yield her reason, and the dearest wishes of her heart. The king of Italy was 
abandoned to wine, to women, and to rustic sports ; and the indiscreet contempt 
of the ungrateful youth, betrayed the mischievous designs of hi6 favourites and 
her enemies. Encompassed with domestic Ibes, she entered into a secret nego- 
tiation with the emperor Justinian ; obtained the assurance of a friendly recep- 
tion, and had actually deposited at Dyrachium in Epirua, a treasure of Soxtj 
thousand pounds of gold. Happy would it have been for her fame and safety, 
if she haa calnoly retired from barbarous faction, to tlie peace and splendour of 
Constantinople. But the mind of Amalasontha was inflamed by audition and 
revenge ; and while her ships lay at anchor in the port, she waited for the 
success of a crime which her passions excused or applauded as an act of iustice. 
Three of the most dangerous malecontents had been separately removei]^ under 
the pretence of trust and command, to the frontiers of Itaty : they were assas- 
sinated by her private emissaries ; and the blood of these noble Gbths rendered 
the queen-mother absolute in the court of Ravenna, and justly odious to a free 
people. But if she had lamented the disorders of her son, she soon wept his 
irreparable loss ; and the death of Athalaric, who, at the age of sixteen, was 
consumed by premature intemperance, left her destitute of any firm support or 
legal authority. Instead of submitting to the laws of her country, which held, 
as a fundamental maxim, that the succession could never pass from the lance to 
the distaff, the daughter of Theodoric conceived the impracticable des^ of 
sharing with one of her cousins the r^al title, and of reserving in her own 
bands the substance of supreme power. He received the proposal with 
profound respect and affected gratitude ; and the eloquent Cassiodorius 
annoulked to the senate and the emperor, that Amalasontha and Theodatus 
bad ascended the throne of Italy. His birth (for his mother was the sister ot 
Theodoric) might be considerea as an imperfect title ; and the choice of Ama- 
lasontha was more strongly directed by her contempt of his avarice and pusil* 
Janimity, which had deprived him of the love of tne Italians, and the esteem 
x>f the Barbarians. But Theodatus was exasperated by the contempt which he 
deserved :. her justice had repressed and reproached the oppression which he 
exercised against his Tuscan neiglibours ; and the principal Goths, united by 
common (Tuilt and resentment, conspired to instigate his stow and timid dispo- 
sition. The letters of congratulation were scarcely despatched before the 
queen of Italy was imprisoned in a small island of the lake of Bolsena,(65) 
where, aAer a short confinement, she was strangled in the bath, by the order, or 
with the connivance, of the new king, who instructed his turbulent subjects te 
shed the blood of their sovereigns. 

mn oU-^Mtn* xcymw; tnf. CoMlodorlai, wHh aotbority and reaioD, addi two yean to hli afe— 
iafMiolum adhue viz deMniwm. 

(55) The lake, flnom the ndghboarlng towns of Etraria. was rtyled eitiier Vulslnlenali (nowofBoiaana) 

or TanratnieiiBla. It ia aurtounded with white roelca, and stored with fish and wild fowl. The foanger 

PHay (Eplst. il. 96,) celebnuea two woody islands that floated on Iti watera : if a fiiMa, how creduloua 

ahe aaclenla !— if a (kct, how carelesa the modenia ! Yet, since Pliny, the island may have been fixed bf 

jsw and (radual aoeeessiona. 



76 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Justinian beheld with joy the dissensions of the Goths; and the roediationr 
of an ally concealed and promoted the ambitious views of the conqueror. His 
ambassadors, in their public audience, demanded the fortress of Lilyb8eum,4en 
Barbarian fugitives, and a just compensation for the pillage of a small town on 
the Illyrian borders ; but they secretly negotiated with Theodatus to betray 
the province of Tuscany, ana tempted Amalasontha to extricate herself from 
danger and perplexity, by a free surrender of the kingdom of Italj^. A false 
and servile epistle was subscribed by the reluctant hand of the captive <]ueen-: 
but the confession of the Roman senators, who were sent to Constantinople^, 
levealed the truth of her deplorable situation ; and Justinian, by the voice of ft^ 
new ambassador, roost powerfully interceded for her life and liberty/ Yet the* 
secret instructions of the same minister were adapted to serve the cruel jea- 
lousy of Theodora, who dreaded the presence and superior charms of a rival r 
he prompted, with artful and ambiguous hints, the execution of a crime so use-^ 
ful to the Romans ;(66) received the 'intelligence of her death with grief and 
indignation, and denounced, in his master's name, immortal war against the 
perfidious assassin. In Italy, as well as in Africa, the guilt of a usurper 
appeared to justij^ the arms of Justinian ; but the forces which he prepared, 
were insufficient for the subvenion of a miehty kingdom, if their feeble num- 
bers had not been multiplied by the name, the spirit, and the conduct of a hero.. 
A chosen troop of guards, who served on horseback, and were armed witb- 
lances and bucklers, attended the person of Belisarius : his cavaliy was com- 
posed of two hundred Huns, three hundred Moors, and four thousand Gm- 
Jederaietf and the infantry consisted only of three thousand Isaurians. Steering 
the same course as in bis former expedition, the Roman consul cast anchor 
before Catana in Sicily, to survey the strengdi of the island, and to decide 
whether he should attempt the conquest, or peaceably pursue his voyage to 
the African coast. He found a fruitful land and a friendly people. Notwith- 
standing the decay of agriculture, Sicily still supplied the granaries of Rome ; 
the farmers were graciously exemptea from the oppression of military quar- 
ters ; and the Got&, who trusted the defence of the island to the inhabitantSr 
had some reason to complain, that theur confidence was ungratefully betrayed. 
Instead of soliciting and expecting the aid of the kiqg of Italy, they yielded to 
the first summons a cheernil obedience : and this province, the first fruits of 
the Punic wars, was again, after a long separation, united to the Roman em- 
pire.(67) The Gothic garrison of Palermo, whidi alone attempted to resist, 
was reduced, after a short siege, by a singular stratagem. Belisanus introduced 
his ships into the deepest recess of the harbour : Xbtir boats were labcNriouslr 
hoisted with ropes dnd pulleys to the topmast head, and he filled them witlb 
archers, who, from that superior station, commanded the ramparts of the city. 
After this easy, though successful campaign, the conqueror entered Syracuse m 
triumph, at the head of hb victorious bands, distributing gold medals to the 

fiM>ple, on the day which so gloriously terminated the jear of the consulship, 
e passed the winter season in the palace of ancient kings, amidst the ruins of 
a Grecian colony, which once extenaed to a circumference of two-and-twenty 
miles :(68) but in the spring, about the festival of Easter, the prosecution of his 
designs was interrupted by a daiverous revolt of the African toix^es. Carthage 
was saved by the presence of Belisarius, who suddenly landed with a thousand 
guards.t Two thousand soldiers of doubtful faith returned to the standard of 
their old commander; and he marched without hesitation, above fif^ miles, to 
seek an enem^r* whom he affected to pity and despise. Eight thousand rebels 
trembled at his approach ; they were routed at the first onset, by the dexterity 

(56) Yet Procopios diicredltilite own eTldenee (AoaedoL c 16), by eonfeniiiK Uiat in bl« public bistofy 
be had DOC ipoken the tniUi. See Uie EpIeUei from queen Gundelina to Uie empteai Tbeodorn (Vur. z. 
JO, SI. 8S, sod obeenre n implcloue word, de ill* penooA, 4tc), witta the elabornie CommcBUiy of Butt 



(lorn. X. p. 177—185). 

(57) For tbe eooauert of Sicily, compare the nairaUTe of Proeopius with the eomplalnis of Todta. 
s^othlc. 1. 1. c 5. 1. iil. e. 16). Tbe Gothic queen had lately rdieved that Ihanklea Wand ( Var. Ix. 10, 11) 



(58) The ancient magnitude and splendour of Uie five quartera of Syracuee, are delineated by Cicci 
On Verem. actio II. 1. Iv. c. 58, 53), Strabo (I. vl. p. 415,) and d^Onrille Bicuia (torn. U. p. 174-U3) TbO: 
Mw city, leMoied by Aufuatuf, ihrank toward the ialaod. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 17 

ol their master; and this ienoble victoiy would baTe restored the peace of 
Africa, if the conqueror had not been hastily recalled to Sicily, to appease a 
sedition which was kindled during^ his absence in his own camp.(69) Disorder 
and disobedience were the common maladies of the times : the genius to com- 
mand, and the virtue to obey, resided only in the mind of Belisarius. 

[A. D. 534. 536.] Althoi^ Theodatus descended from a race of heroes, he 
was ignorant of the art, and averse to the dangers, of war. Although he had 
studied the writings of Plato and Tully, philosophy was incapable of purifying 
his mind from the basest passions, avance and fear. He bad purchased a 
sceptre by ingratitude and murder: at the first menace of an enemy, he 
degraded his own majesty, and that of a nation, which already disdained their 
unworthy sovereig;n. Astonished by the recent example of Gelimer, he saw 
himself dragged m chains through the streets of Constantinople : the terrors 
which Belisarius inspired, were heightened by the eloquence of Peter, the 
Byzantine ambassador ; and that bold and subtle advocate persuaded him to 
sign a treaty, too ignominious to become the foundation of a lasting peace. It 
was stipulated, that in the acclamations of the Roman people, the name of the 
emperor should be always proclaimed before that of the Gothic king ; and that 
as oflen as the statue of Theodatus was erected in brass or marble, the divine 
irnas^e of Justinian should be placed on its right hand. Instead of^ conferring, 
the King of Italy was reduced to solicit, the honours of the senate ; and the con- 
sent of the emperor was made indispensable, before he could execute, ae^ainst 
a priest or senator, the sentence either of death or confiscation. The feeble 
monarch resigned the i>ossession of Sicily ; offisred as the annual mark of his 
dependence, a crown of gold of the weight of three hundred pounds ; and pro- 
mised to supply, at the requisition of his sovereign, three thousand Gothic 
auxiliaries for the service of the empire. ^ Satisfied with these extraordinaiy 
concessions, the successful agent of Justinian hastened his journey to Constan- 
tinople ; but no sooner had be reached the Alban vil]a,^60) than he was recalled 
by the anxiety of Theodatus ; and the dialogue which passed between the 
king and the ambassador, deserves to be represented in its original simplicity, 
** Are you of opinion that the emperor will ratify this treaty ? perhaps. If he- 
re fuses, what consequence will ensue ? War. Will such a war be just or 
reasonable ? MoU auurtdly : every one ihoM act according to his trader. 
What is ^our meaniiu^ ? xou are a philosopher — Jtuiinian u emperor of the 
Romans : it would ill become the disc^le qfPlaio to shed the blood of thousands 
in his private quarrel : the successor of Augustus should vindicate his rights, and 
recover by arms the ancient provinces offUs empire,** This reasoning might 
not convince, but it was sufficient to alarm and subdue the weakness of Theo- 
datus ; and be soon descended to his last offer, that for the poor equivalent of a 
pension of forty-eight thousand pounds sterling, he would resign the kingdom 
of the Goths and Italians, and si>end the remamder of his days in the innocent 
pleasures of philosophy and agriculture. Both treaties were intrusted to the 
hands of the ambassador, on the frail security of an oath, not to produce the 
second till the first had been positively rejected. The event may be easily 
foreseen : Justinian required and accepted the abdication of the Gothic king. 
His indefatigable agent returned from Constantinople to Ravenna, with ample 
instructions ; and a tair epistle, which praised the wisdom and generosity of the 
royal philosopher, granted his pension, with the assurance of such honours as a 
subject and a Catholic might enjoy; and wisely referred the final execution of 
the treaty, to the presence and authority of Belisarius. But in the interval of 
suspense, two Roman generals, who had entered the {province of Dalmatia, 
were defeated and slain by the Gothic troops. From blind and abject despair, 

(90) Proeoptui (Yandal. 1. U. c. 14, IS,) lo clearly relata Uie return of BeUsarlui Into Sicily (n. 146, 
tdtt. Hoesehelii), Uiat I am astonished at tlie straiwe misappreliensiaQ and reproaclies of a learned crilk 
(GBoyree de la Mothe le Vayer, torn. yilJ. p. 103, IfO). 

(IM^ The ancient Alba was ruined In tbe first ago of Rome. On the saiae spot, or at 1ca« iu tha 
Mtebbourhood, saoeesrtvely arose, 1. The vUla of Pompey, fcc. S. A camp of Uie pnetorian cohorts. 
$. The modem episcopal dty of Alhontuu or Albuno. Procop. Goth. L ii. c. 4. Cluver. IlaL Amiq. umb* 
ILp.014> 



W THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Theodatus capriciously rose to gpioundless and fatal presuraption»(61) and dared 
to receive witD menace and contempt, the ambassador of Jostinian, who claimed 
nis promise, solicited the allegiance of his subjects, and boldly asserted the 
inviolable privileere of his own character. The march of Belisarius dispelled 
^s visionary pride ; and as the first campaign(62) was employed in the reduc- 
tion of Sicily, the invasion of Italy is applied by Procophis to th^ second year 
of the Gothic War.(63) 

AAer BelisariuB had left sufficient garrisons in Palenno and Syracuse, he 
embarked his troops at Messina, and landed them without resistance, on the 
opposite shores of Rhegium. A Gothic prince, who had married the daughter 
of Theodatus, was stationed with an army to guard the entrance of Italy: but 
he imitated, without scruple, the example of a sovereign, faithless to his public 
and private duties. The perfidious Ebennor deserted with his followers (o the 
Roman camp, and was dismissed to enjoy the servile honours of the fiyzantine 
court. (64) From Rhegium to Naples, toe fleet and army of Belisarius, almost 
always in view of each other, advanced near three hundred miles along the sea- 
coast. The people of Bruttium, Lucania, and Campania, who abhorred the 
name and religion of the Goths, embraced the specious excuse, that their ruined 
walls were incapable of defence : the soldiers paid a just equivalent for a plen- 
tiful market, and curiosity alone mtemipted the peaceful occupations of the 
husbandman or artificer. Naples, which was swelled to a great and populous 
capital, tong cherished the language and manners of a Grecian colony ;(65) and 
the choice of V^iigil had ennobled this elegant retreat, which attractea the lovers 
of repose and study, from the noise, the smoke, and the laborious opulence o* 
Rome.(66) As soon as the place was invested by sea and land, belisarius 
gave audience to the deputies of the people, who exhorted him to disregard a 
conquest unworthy of his arms, to seek tfaie Gothic king in a field of battle, and 
after his victory, to claim, as the sovereign of Rome, the allegiance of the 
dependent cities. '' When I treat with my enemies," replied the Roman chief, 
with a haudity smile, '^I am more accustomed to give than to receive coun- 
sel : but I bold in one hand inevitable ruin, and in the other peace and free- 
dom, such as Sicily now enjoys." The impatience of delay uiged him to grant 
the most liberal terms ^ his honour secured their performance ^ but Naples was 
divided into two factions ; and the Greek democracy teas inflamed by their 
onitors, who, with much spirit and some truth, represented to the multitude,, 
that the Goths would punish their defection, and that Belisarius himself must 
esteem their loyalty and valour. Their deliberations, however, were not per- 
fectly free : the city was commanded by eight hundred Bari>arians, whose 
wives and children were detained at Ravenna, as the pledge of their fidelity ; 
and even the Jews, who were rich and numerous, resisted, with desperate 
enthusiasm, the intolerant laws of Justinian. In a much later period, the cir- 
cumference of Naples,(67) measured only two duMnand three hundred and 

(61) A SibylliM orade ww ready to pronouiioe— AfHcA eapf4 mmmdut torn nato peilbit ; a ioileDee of 
portentous aroMgulty (Gothic I. L e. 7), whieb baa bmn publlabed in nnkiKmn charaetan by Opaopeua, 
anodhorofUaeoraclea. TbeFwnlUlti«tha8pRMaiaedai»n»keiitaiy: b«tall biapraoilaeabaTe bean 
vain and fruitleas. 

(63) In his chronolnfy, Imitaied la aonne deme ftom TbiicydldM, Proeopitta beglna each aprtng Uie- 
yeara of JuaUniao and oTtfie GoUrie war; and hl> lint era cotnddca with the flrat of April, 53S, and not 
536, according lo Uie Annate of Baranlua (PagL CrtL torn. ii. p. 5S5, who to followed by Huraiori and Uie 
Gditori of Sifgoniua). Yet in aome panagea we are at a loa to reconcile the daiea of Prooopiua with him- 
aHf, and with the ChroDtele of HareeQInua. 

(63) Tbeaerleaof Uie flnt Gotiiie war to repreaented i^ Procoploa 0- 1 c 5~89, 1. 11. c 1— 90, 1. IH. c. 
1), till the captivity of Vitigea. With the aid of Sigonina (0pp. torn. i. de Imp. Occident 1. zviL xviit.) 
and Muraton (Annali d*Italia, torn. ▼.), I have lieaned tome ftw additional fbcti. 

(64) Jornandea, de Rebin GeUcia, c. 60, |>. 70S» ediL Grol. and tooi. L p. SI. MnratMl da Suceeai. 
ReKn. p. 941. 

(65) Nero (says Taeltas, Annal. xv. 35,) Neapolim qnaal Grscan vibem deiegit One hundred and 
fifty years afterw-ard, In the time of Septimiui Bevenis, the HeUnitm of the NeapctHtanc to praiaed bir 
Phtlostratas: ytvos 'EXXitvts km arvKoit otfcv km ras crUag rwv Xoywy EXXqviJCM U9i (Icon. 1. 1. p. 703, 
edit. Qlcar.) 

(H6) The otitim of Naples Is praised by the Roman poets, by Virgil, Horace, Sillua Italicus, and Btatiua 
(Cluvcr. Ttal. Ant. t. iv. p 1149, 1150). In an elegant epistle (Sylv. 1. ill. 5, p. 94—98, Milt Markland). 
Ptatitis tindertnkcB the difficult tSKk nf drawing hia wife fVom the pleasurvorRome to that calm retreat, 

(67) Tiiis Pieaiure wns lalcen by Soger I. after the conquest of Kaples (A. D. 11?9* . which be made Ibt 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE n 

mty time paces :(e8) tlie foifificatioro were defended by precipices or the 
aea ; when the aqueducts were intercepted, a supply of water might be draw» 
from weHs and fountains ; and the stock of provisions was sufficient to consuine 
the patience of the besiegers. At the end of twenty dajs^ that of Beitsarius 
was almost ezhanstedy and he had reconciled himself to the disgrace ol* aban- 
doning the siege, that he mi|;ht march, before the winter season, against Rome 
and the Gothic k»r. But his anziety was relieyed by the bold curiosity of an 
Isaurian, who explored the diy chanotl of an aqueduct, and secretly reported 
that a passage miriit be perlmted to intfoduoe a file of urmed soldiers into 
the heart of the cny. When the work had been silently executed, the humane 
general risked the discoyeiy of his secret, by a last ana fruitless admonition of 
the impending danger. In the darkness of the night, four hundred Romans 
entered the aqueduct, raised themselves by a rope, which they fastened to an 
(^ve^tree, into the boose or garden of a solitary matron, sounded their trum- 
pets, surprised the sentinels, and gave admittance to their companions, who on 
all sides scaled the walls, and bunt <^>en the gates of the city. Eveiy crime 
which is punished by social justice, was practised as the rights of war ; the 



Huns were distiiMniisned by cruelty and sacrilege, and Belisarios alone appeared 
in the streets and churches of Naples, to moderate the cslamities which he 
predicted. ** Tbe gold and silver," he repeatedly exclaimed, ** are the iust 
rewards of your vaJour. But spare tbe inhabitants, they are Christians, they 
are suppliants, they are now your fellow-subjects. Restore the children to their 
parente, the wives to their Msbands ; and show them by your spenerosity, of 
what friends they have obstniately deprived themselves.** The citr was saved 
by the virtue and authority of its conqueror ;(S9) and wiien the Neapolitans 
returned to their houses, they found some consolation in the secret ergoyment 
of their hidden treasures. The Barbarian rarison enlisted in the service of 
the emperor; Apulia and Calabria, delivered from the odious presence of tbe 
Goths, acknowledffed his dominion ; and the tusks of the Caledonian boar» 
which were still diown at Beneventum, are curiously described by the histo* 
rian of Belisarius^TO) 

{A. D. 540.] The fitithful soMiers and cittsens of Naples had expected 
their delivenuace from a prince, who remained the inactive and almost indif* 
ferent spectator of their ruin. Tbeodatus secured his person within the walls 
ef Rome, while his cavaliy advanced forty miles on the Appian wa)r, and 
encamped in tbe Pomptine mavriies ; which, by a canal of mneteen miles in 
length, had been recently drained, and converted into excellent pastures.(7H 
But the principal forces of tbe Qottis were dispersed in Dalmatia, Venetia, ana 
Gaul ; and the feeble mind of their king was confounded by the unsuccessful 
event of a divination, which seemed to presage the downfall of his empire. (7fi) 
The most abject slaves have arrakrned the guilt or weakness of an unfortunate 
master. TIm character of Tbeodatus was rigorously scrutinized by a free and 
idle camp of Barbarians, conscious of their privilege and power; he was 
declared unworthy of his race, his nation, and his throne ; and their general 



cMtal«f ktallSWkll«dlMB(€MalUMlle,blOltaGhrlte,tMD.tt.^M•). Tftttckf.theHiiTdtaiClirifltfaii. 
Europe, to now at !«■« twelve mtlei in clieumliNenee (JuL Cceer. Cepeeett iUet MeepoL 1. 1. p. 47), tnd 
coDtalns more inhabltmita (350,000) in e given space, then any other ajxit in the Itnewn world. 

(08) Not ieomecrkal, but eommon peeee, oratepe, ofS French Inchea (d*Anville, Meaauraa Itlneraire^ 
pw 7, 8) : the S383 do not nake an i^i fg<H» mllOL 

(<B) Beilsailua wm reproved by Pope Sylvertua fbr Uie raaancra. Be repeopled Naplei, end fanported 
edionies of Aftican capUvea Into SicUy, Calabria, and ApnUa (Hirt. MlaoeU I xvi. in Muratori, torn. I. p. 



(70) BeMvenUunwM b«IU by IMomede, ibe nephew oTMeleatar (Ctaver. ton. tf. p. IIOS, llOS). The 
Caledonian hunt Is a pictare of lavage life. (Ovid MetamorpL 1. vlU.) Thirty or forty heroea weM 
kagved agaloet a hog: the bruiee (not the hog) qaarrelled with a lady fbr the bead. 



(71) The Deestuuvium ie etrangely confounded by Cluveriue (torn. It. p. 10O7.j with the river Uftnc. 
It wae la truth a canal of nineteen mUaa, ft«mi Forum Appi to Terraclna, on which Horace embarked h» 
tbe night The Deoenaoviom which la meDlloned by Lucaa, Dion Caeriue, and Caaih>dorlna baa been 
aoOeleatly mined, lertoied, and oMheiated. (d^AnviUe, Analyae, de r halle, p. 185, lee.) 

(78) A Jew natUied hie contempt and hatred for mU the Chriiiians, by enckieing three bands, each of 
Ian hofli, and discriminated by the names of Goths, Oreeke, and Homana. Of the Orrt, almoet all were 
found dead-ftlmoet all of the second were alive-oT the third, half died, and the nst kM their bristte» 
Ho unsuitable emblem of tbe event 



«0 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Vitig^esy whose valoar had been signalized in the Illyrian war, was raised with 
unanimous applause on the buckKrs of his companions. On the first ramouTy 
the abdicated monarch fled from the justice of bis countiy , but he was pur- 
sued by private reyeoRe. A Goth whom he had injured m his ]ove» overtoil 
Tbeodatus on the Flaminian way, and regardless of his unmanly cries, slaugh- 
tered him, as he lay prostrate on the ground, like a victim (says the historian) 
at the foot of the aJtar. The choice of the people is the bKest and purest title 
to reign over them : yet such is the pr^udice of every aee, that Viti^es im- 
patiently wished to return to Ravenna, where he mi^t seize, with the 
reluctant hand of the daughter of Amalasontha, some faint shadow of here- 
ditary right A national council was immediately held, and the new monarch 
reconciled the impatient spirit of the Barbarians to a measure of disgrace, 
which the misconduct of bis predecessors rendered wise and indispensable. 
The Goths consented to retreat in the presence of a victorious enemy ; to delay 
till the next spring the operations of onensive war ; to summon their scattered 
forces: to relimiuish their distant possessions, and to trust even Rome itself to 
the faith of its inhabitants. Leuderis^ an aged warrior, was left in the capital 
with four thousand soldiers ; a feeble garrison, which mieht have jecoodea the 
zeal, though it was incapable of opposing the wishes, of the Romans. But a 
fnomentary enthusiasm of religion and patriotism was kindled in- their minds. 
They furiously exclaimed that the apostolic throne should no longer be pro- 
faned by the triumph or toleration oif Arianism ; that the tombs of the Cesars 
should no longer be trampled by the savages of the north : and without reflect- 
ing, that Italy must sink into a province, of Constantinople, they fondly hailed 
the restoration of a Roman emperor as a new era of freedom and prosperity. 
The deputies of the pope and clergy, of the senate and people, mvited the 
lieutenant of Justinian to accept tl^ir voluntaij allegiance, and to enter the 
city, whose gates would be thrown open for his reception. As soon as Beli- 
sarius had fortified his new conquests, Naples and Cume, he advaiKed about 
twenty miles to the banks of the Vultumus, contemplated the decajr^d gran • 
dcur of Capua, and halted at the separation of the Latin and Appian ways. 
The work of the censor, aAer the incessant use of nine centuries, still preserved 
Its primeval beauty, and not a flaw could be discovered in the laige polbhed 
stones, of which that solid, though narrow road, was so firmly compacted.(73) 
Belisarius, however, preferred the Latin way, which at a distance from the sea 
and the marshes, skirted in a space of one hundred and twenty miles along the 
foot of the mountains. His enemies had disappeared ; when he made his 
entrance through the Asinarian gate, the garrison departed without molestation 
along the Flaminian way; and the city, after sixty years servitude, was 
delivered from the yoke of the Barbarians. Leuderis alone, from a motive of 
pride or discontent, refused to accompany the fugitives ; and the Gothic chief, 
Limself a trophy of the victory, was sent with the keys of Rome, to the throne 
of the emperor Justinian.(74) 

[A. D. 537.] The first days, which coincided with the old Saturnalia, were 
devoted to mutual con^tulation and the public ioy ; and the Catholics pie 
pared to <;elebrate, without a rival, the approaching festival of the nativity of 
Christ. 2n the familiar conversation of a hero, the Romans acquired some notion 
of the virtues which histoiy ascribed to their ancestors : they were edified by 
the apparent respect of Belisarius for the successor of St. Peter, and his rigid 
discipline secured in the midst of war the blessings of tranquillity and justice 
They applauded the rapid success of his arms, which overran the adjacent 
country, as far as Nami, Penisia, and Spoleto ; but they trembled, the senate. 
the cleigy, and the unwarlike people, as soon as they understood, that he had 



(73) Bergler (Hist, det Grands ChemiDS da Romaina, torn. i. p. 891—898. 440-444,) exonlnea the itroc 




OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. 81 

VBioIredt and would apeedil j be reduced, to tusUiiy a siege against the poweM 
of the Gothic monarchy. The desiens of Vitiges were executed during the 
winter season, with diligence and efifect. From their rustic ha'bitations, from 
their distant earrisons, the Goths assembled at Rayenna for the defence of their 
tXMintry; and such were their numbers, that after an arm^ had been detached 
for the relief of Dalmatia^one hundred and fifty thousand whtine men marched 
binder the royal standard. According to the degrees of rank or merit, the 
Gothic king distributed arms and horses, rich gitls, and liberal nromises : he 
noTed along the Flaminian way, declined the useless sieges of Perusia and 
S^letoL respected the impregnable rock of Nami, and arrived within two 
miles of Rome at the foot of the Milrian bridge. The narrow passage was 
fortified with a tower, and Belisarius had computed the vaJue oi the twenty 
days, which must be lost in the construction of another bridge. But the con- 
sternation of the soldiers of the tower, who either fled or deserted, disappointed 
his hopes, and betrayed his person into the most imminent danger. At the 
head of one thousand horse, the Roman general sallied from the Flaminian 
^te to maik the ground of an advantageous position, and to survey the camp 
of the Barbarians ; but while he still believed them on tbe other side of the 
Tiber, he was suddenly encompassed and assaulted by their innumerable 
squadrons. The fate ofltaly depended on his life : and the deserters pointed 
to the conspicuous horse, a bay, (75^ with a white face, which be rode on that 
memorable day. ** Aim at the bay norse," was the universal cry. Eveiy bow 
was bent, every javelin was directed, against that fatal object, and the com- 
mand was repeated and obeyed by thousands who were ignorant of its real 
motive. The bolder Barbarians advanced to the more honourable combat ot' 
swords and spean ; and the praise of an enemy has graced tbe fall of Visandus. 
tbe 8tandard-bearer,(76) who maintained hb foremost station, till he was pierced 
with thirteen wounds, perhaps by tbe hand of Belisarius himself. The Roman 
general was strong, active, and dexterous : on every side he dischaiged his 
weighty and mortal strokes: his faithful guards imitated his valour, and 
defended his person ; and the Goths, after the loss of a thousand men, fled 
before the arms of a hero. They were raishly pursued to their camp ; and tbe 
Romans, oppressed by multitudes, made a gradual, and at length a precipitate 
retreat to the gates of the city: the fates were shut against the fugitives ; and 
the public terror was increased by the report that TOlisarius was slain. His 
countenance was indeed disfigured by sweat, dust, and blood ; his voice was 
hoarse, his strength was almost exhausted : but his unconquerable spirit still 
remained ; he imparted that spirit to his desponding^ companion ; and their 
last desperate charge was felt by the flyii^ Barbarians, as if a new army, 
vigorous and entire, had been poured from the city. The Flaminian eate was 
, thrown open to a real triumph ; but it was not before Belisarius had visited 
every post, and provided for the public safety, that he could be persuaded by 
ills wife and friends, to f aste the needful refreshments of food and sleep. In 
tbe more improved state of tbe art of war, a general is seldom required or 
«veR permitted to display the personal prowess of a soldier ; and the example 
of Belisarius may be added to the rare examples of Heniy IV., of PyrrhuSr 
and of Alexander. 

After this first and unsuccessful trial of their enemies, the wbole army of the 
Goths passed the Tiber, and formed the siege of the city, which continued 
above a year, till their final departure. Whatever fancy may conceive, the 
eevere compass of tbe geographer defines tbe circumference of Rome within a 
]ine of twelve miles and tnree hundred and forty-five paces ; and that cireum- 
ierenoe, except in the Vatican, has invariably been the same from the triumph 

''5) A bone of a bay or red colour was ityM doXio; bjr Um Oroeks, balan by Um Baiboriaaa, and 
apaaU by Um Bomaoa. Honeiil apadicai, >aytVlr|U (Georflc 1. lit. T% wfUi Um Obaerrationi of Manto 
aod Heyne). Z«w&l or Batn, aifnlAes a branch of Uie palm tree, whoae name, 6otnL i> wfwmjtaom to 
r«l. AoluaGeIUoa,ll.«r 

(7B) I interpret ffmviaXaptos, not aa a proper name, batan ofllee, itaBdard-bearer, from Watitm (toxUIiub) 
a boftarle word adopted by tbe Oreeka and Somane. Paul Dlaeon. 1. L e. 90, p. 7S0. Giot. Nomina 
flothlea, p. 575. Ducanfe, Qlooi taHn, lorn. I p. 530, 5M. 

Vol, III.— G 



8t THE DECLINE AND FALL 

of Aurelian, to the peaceful but obscure reiffn of the modem popes.(77) ' But 
in the day of her greatness, the space within her walls was crowded with* 
habitations and inhabitants ; and the populous suburbs that stretched alon^ 
the public roads* were darted like so many rays from one common centre* 
Adversity swept away these extraneous ornaments and left naked and desolate 
a considerable part even of the seven hills. Yet Rome in its present state, 
could send into the field above thirt^r thousand males of a military age ;(78) 
and, notwithstanding the want of discipline and exercise, the far greater part, 
inured to the hardships of (^overt^, might be capable of bearing arms for the 
defence of their country and religion. The prudence of Belisarius did not 
neglect this important resource, nis soldiers were relieved by the zeal and 
di%ence of the people, who watched while they slept, anjd laboured while 
they reposed : he accepted the voluntary service of the bravest and most indi* 
gent of^the Roman youth ; and the companies of townsmen sometimes repre- 
sented, in a Tacant post, the presence of the troops which had been drawn away 
to more essential duties. But his just confidence was placed in the veterans 
who bad fought under his banner in the Persian and African wars ; and although 
Ihat gallant Band was reduced to five thousand men, he undertook, with such 
contemptible numbers, to defend a circle of twelve miles, against an army of 
one hundred and fiAy thousand Barbarians. In the walls of Rome, which 
Belisarius constructed or restored, the materials of ancient architecture may be 
discerned ;f 79) and the whole fortification was completed, except in a chasm 
still extant oetween the Pincian and Flaminian gates^ which the prejudices of 
the Goths and Romans lefl under the effectual guard of^St. Peter the apo8tle.(80y 
The battlements or bastions were shaped in sharp aisles ; a ditch, broad ana 
deep, protected the foot of the rampart : and the archers on the rampart were- 
assisted by military engines ; the haUiAa^ a powerful cross-bow, which darted 
short but massy arrows : the ^magri^ or wild asses, which, on the principle of 
a sling, threw stones and bullets of an enormous size.(81) A chain was drawD* 
across the Tiber ; the arches of the aqueducts were made impervious, and the 
mole or sepulchre of Hadrian(82) was converted, for the first time, to the uses 
of a citadel. That venerable structure, which C9ntained the ashes of the 
Antonines, was a circular turret, rising from a quadratigular basis : it was 
covered with the white marble of Paros, and decorated by the statues of gods 
and heroes ; and the lover of the arts must read with a sigh, that the works of 
Praxiteles or Lysippus were torn from their lofb^ pedestals, and hurled into the 
ditch on the heads of the besiegers.(83) To each of his lieutenants, Belisarius 
assigned the defence of a gate, with the wise and peremptory instruction, that, 
whatever might be the alarm, they should steadily adhere to their respective 
posts, and trust their general tor the safety of Rome. The formidable nost of 
the Goths was iasufficient to embrace the ample measure of the city ; of the 
fourteen gates, seven only were invested from the Prsenestine to the Flaminian 
way; and Yitiges divided his troops into six camps, each of which was for- 

(77) M. d'AnviUe has given, in Uw Memoln of the Academy for the year 1756 (torn. zu. p. 199— SM) 
a plan of Rome on a amallar acale, but tu mora •ccunliB Una tiiat wlilcb Ira had delineated in 173B» for 
Rollin'a hiitory. Experience had Improved hia knowledfe ; and, Inatead of Hoaii's topography, he used 
the new and excellent map of Nolli. PUny*> old meatore of xiii muat lie redaced to vtU mUea. It it 
easier to alter a text, than to reOMve hllla or ooildinfi.*' 

(78) In the year 1709, Labat (Voyagei en Italia, torn. Ul. p. S18,) reckoned 138,568 Ohriatian aoula, 
bealdea 8 or 10,000 Jews— without aoutol^-In the year 17G3, the numben exceeded 160,000. 

(79) The accurate eye of Nardlni (Roma Antica, t. L c ¥111. p. SI,) eould diaUnfoiah the tumohuari* 

part of the wall, which Proeopitta obaerved (Goth. L L c 13>» 



opera dlBellaario. 

. (80) The flaBore and leaning in the upper 
la visible to the preaent liour. Donat. Komi 



la Vetos, I. i.c 17,0.53, 54. 
. . ^jj. . 



(81) LIpsioa (Opp. tom. ill. PolioreeL 1. iil.) was ignorant of this clear and eooapicaooi paasaga of Pn>- 
copius (Goth. 1. 1. c. 81). The engine was named oiwypof , the wild aas, a caldtrando (Hen. flteph. The- 
saur. Lingus Ornc. torn. li. p. 1340, 1341. tom. ill p. 877). I liave aeen an ingenioua model, contrivoi* 
and executed by General Melville, which Imiiaiee or aurpaaaes the art of antiquity. 

(83) The description of this mausoleum, or mole, in Prooopius (1. i. c. 95), is the ilrst and best The 
heiaht above the walls vve^y ti X<0« ^Xi^v. On Nolirs great plan, the sides measure 960 English fbett 

(83) Praxiteles excelled in Fauns, and that of Athena waa his own master-piece. Borne now contains 
above tbiitv of the sanw character. When the diich of St. Angelo was cleaned under Urban VIIL, the 
M'orkmen found the ileeping Faun of the Barberinlpalaee, but a leg, a thigh, and the right arm, had beea 
hioken ftom that beautiful atatue. Whickelman, Hist, de r Art, torn. ii. p. S3, 53, tow. iil. p. 965 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 8» 

tified with a ditch and rampart. On the Tuscan side of the river, a seventh 
encampmeDt was formed in the field or circus of the Vatican, for the important 
parpose of commanding^ the Milvian bridge and the course of the Tiber ; bul 
they approached with devotion the adjacent church of St. Peter ; and the 
threshold of the holy apostles was respected during the siege by a ChristiaD 
enemy. In the a^es of victoir, as often as the senate decreed some distant 
conquest, the consul denounced hostilities, hj unbarring, in solemn pomp, the 
gates of the temple of Janus. (84) . Domestic war now rendered tne admo^^ 
nition superfluous, and the ceremony was superseded by the establishment of a ' 
new religion. But the brazen temple of Janus was left standing in the fonioc 
of a size sufficient only to contain the statue of the god, five cubits in height, o( 
a human form, hut with two faces, directed to the east and west. The double 
eates were likewise of brass ; and a fruitless effort to turn them on their rusty 
binges, revealed the scandalous secret, that some Romans were still attached to 
the superstition of their ancestors. 

Eighteen days were employed by the hesiegers, to provide all the instru* 
ments of attack which antiquity had invented. Fascines were prepared to fill 
the ditches, scaling ladders to ascend the walb. The largest trees of the forest 
supplied the timbers of four batterir^ rams : their heads were armed with iron ; 
they were suspended by ropes, and each ot them was worked by the labour oi 
fiHy men. The lofty wooden turrets moved on wheels or rollers, and formed 
a spacious platform of the level of the rampart. On the morning ^f the nine- 
teenth day, a general attack was made from the Prenestine gate to the Vati- 
can ; seven Gothic columns, with their military engines, advanced to the assault;, 
and the Romans, who lined the ramparts, listened with doubt and anxiety to the 
cheerful assurances of their commander. As soon as the enemy approached the 
ditch, Belisarius himself drew the first arrow ; and such was his strength and 
dexterity, that he transfixed the foremost of the Barbarian leaders. A snout o£ 
applause and victory was re-echoed along the wall. He drew a second arrow^ 
ana the stroke was followed with the same success and the same acclamation.. 
The Roman general theq gave the word, that the archers should aim at the 
teams of oxen ; they were instantly covered with mortal wounds ;- the towers 
which they drew, remained useless and immoveable, and a single moment dis- 
concerted the laborious projects of the king of the Goths. AAer this disappoint > 
mem, Vitiees still continued, or feigned to continue, the assault of the Salarian^ 
rate, that be might divert the attention of his adversary, while his principal 
forces more strenuously attacked the Prsenestine rate and the sepulchre of 
Hadrian, at the distance of three miles from each other. Kear the formen the 
double walls of Vivarium (85^ were low or broken ; the fortifications of the 
latter were feebly guarded : tne vigour of the Goths was excited by the hope 
of victory and spoil : and if a sii^le post had given way, the Romans, and 
Rome itself, were irrecoverably lost. This perilous day was the most glorious 
in the life of Belisarius. Amidst tumult and dismay, the whole plan of the 
attack and defence was distinctly present to his mind ; he observed the changes- 
of each instant, weighed every possible advantage, transported his person to the 
scenes of danger, and communicated his spirit in calm and decisive orders^ 
The contest was fiercely maintained from the morning to the evening ; the: 
Godis were repulsed on all sides, and each Roman might boast that ne had 
vanquished thirty Barbarians, if the strange disproportion of numbers were not 
counterbalanced by the merit of one man. Thirty thousand Goths, according^ 
to the confession of their own chiefs, perished in this bloody action ; and the 
multitude of the wounded was equal to that of the slain. When they advanced 
to the assault, their close disorder suffered not a iavelin to fall without effect; 
and as they retired, the populace of the city joined the pursuit, and slaughtered^ 

(94) Procopiai bu pven the best deacrlfitlon of th« temple of Janua, a national dehy of Lnttat 
(Heyne, Ezcun. v. ad 1. vii. .fneid). It was once a gate in tho primitive city of Romulua and Naa» 
iNardlnt, p. 13. SS6. 389). yinril has deacribed the ancient rite, like a poet and an antiqoarian. 

1 !.K- . '_._.». 1forwildbeaau(Procopiua,OolLlLe.J». "^ 

loflU 



VSSi Fivmrimm was an angle in the new wall enclosed for wil 
ifdCi still ylaibto in Nardinrci. Iv. c. S, p. 159, im, and NolU* 



's great plan of Rome 



94 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

wiAi impunity, the backs of their fljiog enemies. Belisarius instantly sallied 
from the gates ; and while the soldiers chanted his name and victory, the bos- 
tile engines of war were reduced to ashes. Such was the loss and consternation 
of the uotfas, that, from this day, the siege of Rome degenerated into a tedious 
and indolent blockade ; and tber were incessantly harassed by the Roman 

general, who in frequent skirmishes, destroj^ed abo?e five thousand of thejr 
ravest troops. Their cavaliy was unpractised in the use of the bow : their 
archers served on foot ; and this divided force was incapable of contending 
with their adversaries, whose lances and arrows, at a distance or at hand, were 
alike formidable. The consummate skill of Belisarius embraced the favourable 
opportunities : and as be chose the ground and the moooent, as he pressed the 
charge or sounded the retreat,(86) tne squadrons which he detached were sel- 
dom unsuccessful These partial advantages diffused an impatient ardour 
among the soldiers and people, who began to feel the hard^ips of a siege, and 
to disregard the dangers of a general ene;agement. Each plebeian conceived 
himself to be a hero, and the infahtiy, who, since the decay of discipline, were 
lejected from the line of battle, aspired to the ancient honours of the Roman 
lejg^ion. Belisarius praised the spirit of his troops, condemned their presumption, 
yielded to their clamours, and prepared the remedies of a defeat, the possibility 
of which he alone had courage to suspect. In the Quarter of the Vatican, tKe 
Romans prevailed ; and if the irreparable moments bad not been wasted in the 
pillage of the camp, they might have occupied the Milvian bridee, and diaiged 
m the rear of the Gothic host. On the other side of the Tiber, Belisarias 
advanced from the Pincian and Salarian gates. But bis army, four thousand 
soldiers perhaps, was lost in a spacious plain ; they were encompassed and 
oppressed by fresh multitudes, who continually relieved the broken ranks of the 
Barbarians. The valiant leaders of the infantiy were unskilled to conquer ; 
they died : the retreat (a hasty retreat) was covered by the prudence uf the 
general, and the victors started back with affright from the formidable aspect 
of an armed rampart. Th^ reputation of Belisarius was unsullied hj a defeat ; 
and the vain confidence of the Goths was not less serviceable to his designs, 
than the repentance and modesty of the Roman troops. 

From the moment that Belbarius had determined to sustain a siege, his assi- 
duous care provided Rome against the danger of famine, more dreadful than 
the Gothic arms. An extraordinary supply of com was imported from Sicily ; 
the harvests of Campania and Tuscany were forcibly swept for the use of tbe 
city; and the rights of private property were infringed by the strong plea of 
the public safety. It might easily be foreseen that the enemy would intercept 
the aqueducts ; and the cessation of the water mills was the first inconvenience, 
which was speedily removed by mooriog large vessels, and fixing mill stones 
in the current of the river. The stream was soon embarrassed by the trunks of 
trees, and polluted with dead bodies ; yet so effectual were the precautions o^ 
the Roman general, that the waters of the Tiber still continued to give motkxi 
to the mills and drink to the inhabitants ; the more distant quarters were sup- 
|>lied from domestic wells ; and a besieged city might support, without impa- 
tience, the privation of her public baths. A laige portion of Rome, from tbe 
Pnenestine ^ate to the chuich of St. Paul, was never invested by the Goths ; 
their excursions were restrained by the activity of the Moorish troops : tbe 
navigation of the Tiber, and the Latin, Appian, and Ostian ways, were left free 
and unmolested for the introduction of com and cattle, or the retreat of the 
inhabitants, who sought a refuge in Campania or Sicily. Anxious to relieve 
bimself from a useless and devouring multitude, Belisarius issued his peremptoiy 
?• "li?' ^^^ instant departure of the women, the children, and slaves ; required 
bis soldiers to dismiss their male and female attendants, and regulated their 
allowance, that one moiety should be given in provisions, and the other in money. 

tJ^m^ ?l^^S?"tJS?"Pf '"i lt« rarioui notes, consult Lipdua de MUitiA RomaoA (0pp. ton. lU. I. 
It MtelM^ Oo£^ r?S ' ^ ^''^' "* " recoiwnended by p/^plw, and addpMi 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. u 

His foresight was justified by the increase of public distress, as sood as the Goths 
had occupied two important posts in the neighbourhood of Rome. By the loss 
of the port, or, as it is now called, the city of Porto, he was deprived of the 
countiy on the right of the Tiber, and the best communication with the sea ; 
and he reflected with grief and anger, that three hundred men, could he have 
spared such a feeble band, might have defended its itnpre^nable works. Seven 
miles from the capital, between the Appian and the Latin ways, two principal 
aqueducts crossing, and again crossing each other, enclosed within their sdid 
and loAy arches a fortified 8pace,^87) where Vitiges established a camp of seven 
thousand Goths to intercept the convoys of Sicily and Campania. The grana- 
ries of Rome were insensibly exhausted, the adjacent countiy had been wasted 
with fire and sword ; such scanty supplies as might yet be obtained by hasty 
excursions, were the reward of valour, and the purchase of wealth : the fonge 
of the horses, and the bread of the soldiers never failed : but in the last mon&s 
of the siege, the peo{)le were exposed to the miseries ot scarcity, unwholesome 
food,(88) and contagfious disorders. Belisarius saw and pitied their sufferings; 
but be had foreseen, and he watched, the decay of their loyalty, and the pn>» 
gresa of their discontent. Adversity had awakened the Romans »om the dmaiM 
of grandeur and freedom, and taught them the humiliating lesson, that it was of 
small moment to their real happiness, whether the name of their master was 
derived from the Gothic or the Latin language. The lieutenant of Justkiian 
listened to their just complaint, but he rejected with disdain the idea of flight 
or capitulation ; repressea their clamorous impatience for battle : amused them 
with the prospect of sure and speedy relief; and secured himself and the city 
from the effects of their despair or treacheiT. T wioe in each month he changed 
the station of the officers to whom the custody of the gates was committed : the 
various precautions,oTpatn)les, watchwords, lights, and music, were repeatedly 
employed to discover whatever passed on the ramparts ; outeuards were posted 
beyond the ditch, and the trusty vigilance of dogs supplied the more doubtful 
Melity of mankind. A letter was intercepted, which assured the king of the 
Cbths, that the Asinarian gate, adjoining to the Lateran church, should be 
secretly opened to his troops. On the proof, or suspicion of treason, several 
senators were banisbed, ana the pope Sylverius was summoned to attend the 
representative of his sovereign, at his head-quarters in the Pinclan palace.(8S^ 
Toe ecclesiastics who followed their bishop, were detained in the first or second 
apartment,(90) and he alone was admitted to the presence of Belisarius. The 
conqueror of Rome and Carthajge was modestly seated at the feet of Antonmst 
who reclined on a stately couch ; the general was silent, but the voice of rs-> 
proach and menace issued from the mouth of his imperious wife. Accused by 
credible witnesses, and the evidence of his own subscription, the successor of 
St. Peter was despoiled of his pontifical ornaments, clad in the mean habit of 
a monk, and embarked, without delay, for a distant exile in the East.* At the 
emperor's command, the clergy of Rome proceeded to the choice of a new 
bishop; and after a solemn invocation of the Holy Ghost, elected the deacon 
Vigilius, who had purchased the papal throne b^ a bribe of two hundred pounds 
of gold. The profit, and consequently the guilt, of this simony, was imputed 
to Belisarius : but the hero obeyed the ordfers of his wife ; Antonina served 

(97) Proeopios (Goth. 1. II. c 3.) hm ftwfot to name theie aqnedudJi: wir cao rach a doable InteiMction, 
at Meh a dncaaee froin lUwie, be clearly awertaiued froin Uie writinge of Frontinua FabretU and EmM- 
nard, de Aquis aad de Agro Romano, or from the local maps of Lanieti and CingolanL Beven or emit 
milea ttom the city (50 stadia) on the road to Albana, between die Latin and Appian waya, I dlacern the 
remaliiB of an aqueduct (probably Uie Septlmian), a ■erice (fi30 paces) of arcbes twenty-five liMt hifti 

(88) Tfiey made samagei, aXXmrMt, of mate*s flesh: nnwholesome if the animals, had died of Um» 
ptague^ Odierwise the famous Bologna sausages are said to be made of ass flesh (Voyages de Labat, 
torn. il.D.SJ8). ^. , 

(89) The name of Uie palace, Uie hilL and the adjoining gate, were all derived from the senator Plnclut 
Some recent ▼eetiges of temples and churches are now smooUied in the garden of Uie Minims of the 
Trioiok del Monte (Nardinl,!. !▼. e.7,p. 196. Eschinard, p. 909, 310, tbe old plan of BulIUinp, and 
the great plan of NoUi). Belisarius had flzed his station between the PiueUn and Salarinn gates (Procop. 
eoiLl.i.e.15). „,. ^ 

(90) From the mention of the primum ec secundum vdum, it should seem that Belisariua,eTeli m • 
si^ represented the emperor, and mainuined the proud ceremonial of the Byzantiae palace. 



86 TH£ DECLINE AND FALCi 

Ihe passions of the empress ; and Theodora lavished her treasures, in the yam 
hope of obtaining a pontiff hostile or indifferent to the council of Chalce- 
don.(91) 

The epistle of Belisarius to the emperor announced his victory, his danger, 
and his resolution. ''According to your commands, v^e have entered the 
dominions of the Groths, and reduced to jour obedience, Sicily, Campania, and 
the city of Rome : but the loss of these conquests will be more disgraceful 
than their acquisition was glorious. Hitherto we have successfully fought 
against the multitude of Barbarians, but their multitudes may finally prevail. 
Victoiy is the gid of Providence, but the re|>utation of kings ana generals 
•depends on the success or the failure of their designs; Permit me to speak with 
freedom : if you wish that we should live, send us subsistence ; if you desire 
that we should conquer, send us arms, horses, and men. The Romans have 
received us as friends and deliverers ; but in our present distress, they will be 
«itber betrayed by their confidence, or we shall be oppressed by their treachery 
and hatred. For myself, my life is consecrated to your service : it is yours to 
xefiect, whether my death in this situation will contribute to the gloiy and 
prosperity of your reien." Perhaps that reign would have been equally pros- 
|>erpus, it the peaceful master of the East bad abstained from the conquest of 
Africa and Italy : but as Justinian was ambitious of fame, be made some efifoits, 
they were feeble and languid, to support and rescue his victorious general. 
A reinforcement of sixteen hundred Slavonians and Huns was led by Martin 
and Valerian ; and as they had reposed during the winter season in the har- 
bours of Greece, the strength of the men and horses was not impaired by the 
&ti^es of a sea voyage : and they distinguished their valour in the first sally 
against the besie|;ers. About the time of the supumer solstice, Euthalius landed 
at Terracina with laige sums of money for the payment of the troops : he 
cautiously proceeded along the Appian way, and this convoy entered Rome 
throu||[h the gate Capena,(92) while Belisarius, on the other side, diverted the 
attention of the Goths, by a vigorous and successful skirmish. These season- 
able aids, the use and reputation of which were dexterously managed by the 
Roman general, revived the courage, or at least the hopes, of the soldiers and 
l>eople. The historian Procopius was despatched with an important commia- 
eion, to collect the troops and provisions which Campania could furnish, or 
Constantinople had sent ; and the secretary of Belisarius was soon followed by 
Antonina herself,(93) who boldly traversed the posts of the enemy, and 
returned with the oriental succours to the relief of her husband and the besieged 
city. A fleet of three thousand Isaurians cast anchor in the bay of Naples, 
and afterward at Ostia. Above two thousand horse, of whom a part were 
Thracians, landed at Tarentum ; and, after the iunction of five hundred soldiers 
■of Campania, and a train of wagons laden witn wine and flour, they directed 
their march on the Appian way, from Capua to the neighbourhood of Rome. 
The forces that arrived by land and sea were united at the mouth of the Tiber. 
Antonina convened a council of war ; it was resolved to surmount, with sails 
and oars, the adverse stream of the river ; and the Goths were apprehensive 
of disturbing, by any rash hostilities, the negotiation to which Belisarius had 
craftily listened. They credulously believed, that they saw no more than the 
vanguard of a fleet ana army, which already covered the Ionian sea and the 
plains of Campania ; and the illusion was supported by the haughty lan^age 
iof the Roman general, when he eave audience to the ambassadors of Vitiges. 
Afler a specious discourse to vindicate the justice of his cause, they declared, 

(91) Of this act of ncrilegef Procopius (Goth. I. i. e. 95,) is a dry and reluctuiit wimess. The nairm- 
llTCs of LHierattts (Breriarium, c. 9S,) and Anastaslus (do Vit Pont p. 39,) are cbaracterisUe, but pas- 
il0Mie. Boar the ezecraUons of carduutl BaroniuatA. D. 536, No. 123, A. D. 538, No. 4— SO), porteotim, 
Acinus omnI execratione dlgnum. 

(OS) The old Capena was removed by Aurdlan to, or near, the modem sate of St. Sebastian (see NoilPa 
pliin). That memorable spot has been oonaecreted by the Ef^rian grove, the unaoory of Numa, trionptal 
arehcs, the sepulchre of the Sciptos, Metelli, ice. 

(fOi The expreaion of Procopius has an invidious cast— rvviTv 171c r« m^ \sr r^w^m wii/9feMiira» 
«a#Je«iy(G<Stta.LU.c.4). Yetheisspeaklng of a vwMwm. ^^ ' ^ rr-f-v^^ 



OF THE llOMAN EMPIRE 87 

•Ibat, for the sake of peace, they were disposed to renounce the pos&ession of 
Sicily. ^ The emperor is not less generous," replied his lieutenant with a dis- 
dainful smile ; " in return for a gift which you no longer possess, be presents 
you with an ancient province of the empire ; he resi^ to the Goths the 
.sovereignty of the British island.'* Belisarius rejected with equal firmness and 
contempt, the offer of a tribute: but he allowed the Gothic ambassadors to 
seek their fate from the mouth of Justinian himself; and consented wilhseemine 
reluctance to a truce of three months, from the winter solstice to the equinox of 

Ering. Prudence might not safely trust either the oaths or hostages of the 
irbarians, but the conscious superiority of the Roman chief was expressed in 
the distribution of his troops. As soon as fear or hunger compelled the Goths 
to evacuate Alba. Porto, and Ccntumcells, their place was instantly supplied ; 
the garrisons of Nami, Spoleto, and Perusia, were reinforced, ana the seven 
camps of the besiegers were gradually encompassed with the calamities of a 
.sie^e. The prayers and pilgrimage of Datius, bishop of Milan, were not 
without effect ; and he obtained one thousand Thracians and Isauriaos, to assist 
the revolt of Liguria against the Arian tyrant. At the same time, John the 
Sanguinary ,(94) the nephew of Vitalian, was detached with two thousand 
chosen horse, first to Alba on the Fucine lake, and afterward to the frontiers of 
Picenum on the Hadriatic sea. ** In that province,'' said Belisarius, ** the 
Goths have deposited their families and treasures, without a guard or tlie sus- 
picion of daiK;^er. Doubtless they will violate the truce : let them feel your 
presence, before they hear of your motions. Spare the Italians ; suffer pot 
any fortified places to remain hostile in your rear ; and faithfully reserve the 
ispoil for an equal and common partition. It would not be reasonable," he 
added with a laugh, ^ that while we are toiling to the destruction of the drones, 
our more fortunate brethren should rifle and enjoy the honey." 

[A. D. 538.1 The whole nation of the Ostrogoths had been assembled foi 
the attack, and was almost entirely consumed in the siege of Rome. If any 
credit be due to an intelligent spectator, one-third at least of their enormous 
host was destroyed, in frequent and bloody combats under the walls of the 
citjr* The bad Tame and pernicious qualities of the summer air might already 
'be imputed to the decay of agriculture and population ; and the evils of famine 
and pestilence were aggravated by their own licentiousness, and the unfriendly 
disposition of the country. While Vitiges struggled with his fortune ; while 
'he nesitated between shame and ruin : bis retreat was hastened by domestic 
alarms. The king of the Goths was informed by trembling messengers, that 
John the sai^uioaiy spread the devastations of war from the Apennme toihe 
Hadriatic ; that the rich spoils and innumerable captives of ricenum were 
lodged in the fortifications of Rimini ; and that this formidable chief had 
defeated his uncle, insulted his capital, and seduced, by secret correspondence, 
the fidelity of his wife, the imperious daughter of Amalasontha. Yet, before 
be retired, Vitiges made a last effort, either to storm or to surprise the city. A 
secret passage was discovered in one of the aqueducts ; two citizens of the 
'Vatican were tempted by bribes to intoxicate the guards of the Aurelian gate ; 
an attack was meaitated on the walls beyond the Tiber in a place which was 
.not fortified with towers; and the Barbarians advanced, with torches and 
scaling ladders, to the assault of the Pincian gate. But every attempt was 
defeated by the intrepid vigilance of Belisarius and his band of veterans, who, 
in the roost perilous moments, did not regret the absence of their companions ; 
^nd the Gotns, alike destitute of hope and subsistence, clamorously uiged their 
departure, before the truce should expire, and the Roman cavalnr should again 
'be united. One year and nine days af\er the commencement of the siege, an 
army, so lately strong and triumphant, burned their tents, and tumultuously 
repassed the Milvian bridge. They repassed not with impunity : their throng- 
ing multitudes, oppressed in a narrow passage, were driven headlong into the 
'Tiber, by their own fears and the pursuit of the enemy ; and the Romao 



<4M) AaamttriOM (p. 40,) but preMrved the epltbet of S«v«t»an««, which might do hoooor to atlf» 



96 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

general salljing from the Pincian gate, inflicted a severe and disgraceful wound 
on their retreat. The slow length of a sickly and desponding host was heavily 
dragged alon^ the Flaminian way ; from whence the Barbarians were some- 
times compelled to deviate, lest tnej should encounter the hostile garrisons that 
guarded the hi^h-road to Rimini and Ravenna. Yet so powerful was this flyipe 
army, that Viti^es spared ten thousand men for the defence of the cities which 
he was most solicitous to preserve, and detached his nephew Uraias, witb an 
adequate force, for the chastisement of rebellious Milan. At tiie head of hh 
principal army, he besieged Rimini, only thirty-three miles distant from the 
troth ic capital. A feeble rampart, and a shallow ditch, were maintained l^ 
the skill and valour of John the Sanguinary, who shared the danger and fatigue 
of the meanest soldier, and emulated, on a theatre less illustrious, the military 
virtues of his great commander. The towers and battering engines of the Bar- 
barians, were rendered useless ; their attacks were repul^, and the tedious 
blockade, which reduced the ^rrison to the last extremity of hunger, afforded 
time for the union and march ot the Roman forces. A fleet which luid surf)rised 
Ancona, sailed along the coast of the Hadriatic, to the relief of the besieged 
city. The eunuch Narses landed in Picenum with two thousand Heruli and 
five thousand of the bravest troops of the East. The rock of the Apennine 
was forced ; ten thousand veterans moved round the foot of the mountains, 
under the command of Belisarius himself: and a new army, whose encampment 
blazed with innumerable lifi;hts, appeared to advance along the Flaminian way.. 
Overwlielmed witb astonishment and despair, the Goths abandoned the siegpe- 
of Rimini, their tents, their standards, and their leaders ; and Vitiges, who |;ave- 
or followed the example of flight, never halted till he found a shelter withia^ 
the walls and morasses of Ravenna. 

To these walls, and to some fortresses destitute of any mutual support, the 
Gothic monarchy was now reduced. The provinces oT Italy had embraced 
the partY of the emperor ; and his army, gradually recruited to the number of 
twentjr thousand men, must have achieved an easy and rapid conquest, if their 
invincible powers had not been weakened by the discord of the Roman chiefe.. 
Before the end of the si^e, an act of blood, ambi^ous and indiscreet, sullied 
the fair fame of Belisarius. Presidius, a lojal Italian, as he fled from Ravenna 
to Rome, was rudely stopped by Constantine, the military eovemor of Sooleto^ 
and despoiled, even in a church, of two daggers richly inlaid with eold and 
precious stones. As soon as the public danger had subsided, Presi<uus com- 
plained of the loss and injury ; his complaint was heard, but the order of res- 
titution was disobeyed by the pride ana avarice of the offender. Exasperated 
by the delay, Presidius boldly arrested the generaPs horse as he passed throughr 
the Forum ; and with the spirit of a citizen, demanded the common benefit of 
the Roman laws. The honour of Belisarius was engaged ; be summoned a 
council ; claimed the obedience of his subordinate officer ; and was provoked^. 
hj an insolent reply, to call hastily for the presence of his guards. Constantine*. 
viewing their entrance as the signal of death, drew his sword and rushed on. 
the eeneral, who nimbly eluded the stroke, and was protected by his friends ;: 
while the desperate assassin was disarmed, dragged into a neu;fabouring cham- 
ber, and executed, or rather murdered, by the guards, at the arbitraiy command 
of Belisarius.(95) In this hasty act of violence, the guilt of Constantine was^ 
no longer remembered ; the despair and death of that valiant officer were 
secretly imputed to the revenge of Antonina ; and each of his colleagues, 
conscious ot the same rapine, was apprehensive of the same fate. The fear of 
a common enemy suspended the effects of their envy and discontent ; but in 
the confidence of approaching victory, they instigated a powerful rival to 
oppose the conqueror of Rome and Africa. From the domestic service of the 



(95) This tranMcUoQ li related in Um public biatory (GoUi. I. ii. c 8,) wiUi eamloar or milioii ; In Um 

liiecdotea(c.7j)wiUimalevoteiice or freedom; bm MftrceUIni *^ - *-* ' "- '^ — * 

CMU a riiade of premeditated anamination over the deatb of ( 
viee at Rome ami B| " " 
tiaAtn comei alabaii 



Anecdotes (c. 7j) with malevoleiice or freedom; bm Marcelllnne, or rather hie oontinuator (in Chroa.)* 
caiu a riiade of premeditated anamination over the death of Confitanilne. He had pcrfonned food mt- 
vlee at Rome and Bpolelo (Prooop. Goth. L h c.7. 14} ; hut Alemanua confoandi him with a C oaeia n . 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 8& 

palace, and the administration of the private revenue, Narses the eunuch wa» 
suddenly exalted to the head of an army ; and the spirit of a hero, who aftcr^ 
ward equalled the merit and ^lory of fielisarius, served only to perplex the 
operations of the Gothic war. To his prudent counsels, the relief of Rimini 
was ascribed by the leaders of the discontented faction, who exhorted Narses 
to assume an independent and separate command. The epistle of Justinian, 
bad indeed enjoinea his obedience to the eeneral ; but the dangerous exception, 
" as far as may be advantageous to the puolic service,'* reserved some freedom 
of judgement to the discreet favourite, who had so lately departed from the 
MkTca and familiar conversation of his sovereign. In the exercise of this 
doubtful right, the eunuch perpetually dissented from the opinions of Belisarius ; 
and, after yielding with reluctance to the siege of Urbino, he deserted his col- 
league in the night, and marched away to the conquest of the jSmilian province. 
The fierce and formidable bands of the Heruli were attached to the person of 
Narses ;(96) ten thousand Romans and confederates were persuaded to march 
under his banners ; ever^ malecontent embraced the fair opportunity of reveng- 
ing hb private or imaginary wrongs ; and the remaining troops of Belisarius- 
were divided and dispersed from the garrisons of Sicily to the diores of the 
Hadrialic. His skill and perseverance overcame every obstacle : Urbino was 
taken^ the sieges of Fsesulse, Orvietto, and Auximum were undertaken and 
vigorously prosecuted ; and the eunuch Narses was at length Recalled to the 
domestic cares of the palace. AH dissensions were healed, and all oppo6ftioi> 
was subdued by the temperate authority of the Roman general, to whom bi» 
enemies could not refuse their esteem ; and Belisarius inculcated the salutary 
lesson, that the forces of the state should compose one body, and be animated 
by one soul. But in the interval of discord, the Goths were permitted to 
breathe ; an important season was lost, Milan was destroyed, and the northern 
provinces of Italy were afflicted by an inundation of the Franks. 

[A. D. 538, 539.] When Justinian first meditated the conquest of Italy, he 
sent ambassadors to the kings of the Franks, and adjured them, by the common 
ties of alliance and religion, to join in the holy enterprise against the Arians, 
The Goths, as their wants were more ui^ent, employed a more effectual mode 
of persuasion, and vainly strove by the gift of lands and money, to jjurchase 
the friendship, or at least the neutrality, of a light and perfidious nation.(97) 
But the arms of Belisarius, and the revolt of the Italians, had no sooner shaken 
the Gothic monarchy, than Theodehert of Austrasia, the most powerful and 
warlike of the Merovineian kings, was persuaded to succour their distress by 
an indirect and seasonable aid. Without expecting the consent of their sove* 
reien, ten thousand Buigundians, his recent subjects, descended from the Alps,, 
^na joined the troops which Vitiges had sent to chastise the revolt of Milan. 
After an obstinate siege, the capitsJ of Lieuria was reduced by famine, but no 
capitulation could be obtained, except Tor the safe retreat of the Roman 
garrison. Datius, the orthodox bishop, who had seduced his countrymen to 
rebellion(98) and ruin, escaped to the luxury and honours of the Byzantine 
court :(99) but the cleiky^ perhaps the Arian clergy, were slaughtered at the 
foot ot their own altars by the defenders of the Catholic faith. Three hundred 
thousand males were rtporied to be slain ;ClOO) the female sex, and the more 
precious spoil, was resigned to the Buiigundians ; and the houses, or at least Jb^ 

(M) Ttiey reAiMd to mtt* after Ihb departure: nM Uieir capUvea and cattle to the GoUm ; and swore 

never to iigbtagaioat the ~ ... ^.^ — ^ • 

thla wanderlDf naUon, I 

(97) Thie niUonal Te|] 

(torn. Till. p. 1S3— 165), wbocriUclne, m if toe bad not r^Vtb« C^reek historian. 



rsAMsd to serve after his departure ; boM Uieir capUves and cattle to the GoUm ; and swora 
agaioat them. Procoolus Introduces a curious digression on the manners and adventures of 
If naiton, a part of whom finally emigrated to Thule or Scandinavia (Goth. L 11. c. 14. 15). 
tational reproach of perfidy (Procop. GoUi. 1. ii. c. S5), offends Uie ear of la MoUie la Vayer 

^„„^ . .„. p. 1«3~165), who CTiUclses, as if toe bad not read, the Greek historian. 
(9B) Baioniua appiattds his treason, and Justifies the Catholic bisfaoM-H]ul ne sob beretico prindpe 

degant omnem lapidem movent— a useful caution. The more raUonal Muratori (Annall dltalia, torn. v. 

p. 54,) liin«B at the guilt of perjury, and blames at least tho tmpmdmce of Datius. 
(99) Bt DaUus was more successful against devils than against Barbarians. He travelled with a 

avmerous rednue, and occupied, at Corinth, a large house (Baronios, A. 0.538, No. 89, A.D.SSS, 

No. 90). 



«C TwoMvra (compare Procopins, Gotii. I. ii. c. 7. 91). Yet such population to tncredlUe ; 
and uie second or third city of Italy need*aoi repine, if we only decimate the numbere of the present taxu 
Both Milan and Genoa revived in less than thirty years (Paul Diacon. de Gestis Laagobant, I. U. e. 3Q). 



90 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

walls, of Milan were lerelled with the ground. The Goths, in their last 
moments, were revenred by the destruction of a city, second only to Rome in 
«]ze and opulence, in tne splendour of its buildings, or the number of its inhabit* 
ants ; and Belisarius syippathiced alone in the fate of his deserted and devoted 
friends. Encouraged by this successful inroad, Theodebert himself, in the 
ensuing spring, invaded tne plains of Italy with an army of one hundred thousand 
Barbarians. (101) The king, and some chosen followers, were mounted on 
horseback, and armed with lances : the infantiy, without bows or spears, were 
satis&ed with a shield, a sword, and a double-edffed battle-axe, which, in their 
hands, became a deadly and unerriq^ weapon. Italy trembled at the march of 
the Franks; and both the Gothic pnnce and the Roman general, alike ignorant 
«f their designs, solicited, with hope and terror, the friendship of these dai^erous 
allies. Till he had secured the passage of the Po on the bridge of Pavia, the 
grandson of Clovis dissembled his intentions, which he at length declared, by 
assaulting, almost at the same instant, the hostile camps of the Romans and 
Goths. Instead of uniting their arms, they fled with equal precipitation : and 
the fertile, though desolate provinces of Liguria and iETmilia, were abandoned 
to a licentious host of Barbarians, whose ra^e was not mitigated by any thoughts 
•of settlement or conquest. Among the cities which they ruined, (xenoa, not 
yet constructed of marble, is particularly enumerated : and the deaths of thou- 
sands, according to the regular practice of war, appear to have excited less 
horror than some idolatrous sacnfices of women and children, which were per- 
•£>rmed with impunity in the camp of the most Christian king. If it were not 
a melancholy truth, that the first and most cruel sufferings must be the lot of the 
innocent ana hel|)]ess, history might exult in the misery of the conquerors, who, 
in the midst of riches, were left destitute of bread or wine, reduced to drink 
ihe waters of the Fo, and to feed on the flesh of distempered cattle. The 
dysentery swept away one-third of their army ; and the clamours of his 
«ubiects, who were impatient to pass the Alps, disposed Theodebert to listen 
with respect to the mild exhortations of Belisarius. The memory of this 
inglorious and destructive warfare was perpetuated on the medals of Gau. and 
Justinian, without unsheathing his sword, assumed the title of conqueror ot the 
Franks. The Merovingian prince was offended by the vanity of the emperor ; 
he afl^ted to pity the {alien fortunes of the Goths ; and his insidious offer of a 
federal union was fortified by the promise or menace of descending from the 
Alps at the head of five hundred thousand men. His plans of conquest were 
boundless, and perhaps chimerical. The king of Austrasia threatened to 
chastise Justinian, and to march to the gates of Constantinople :(102) he was 
overthrown and slain(l03) by a wild buil,(104) as he hunted in the Belgic or 
Geraaan forests. 

As soon as Belisarius was delivered from his foreign and domestic enemies, 
he seriously applied his forces to the final reduction of Italy. In the siege of 
Osimo, the general was nearly transpierced with an arrow, if the mortal stroke 
bad not been intercepted by one of bis guards, who lost, in that pious ofiice, the 
use of his hand. Tne Goths of Osimo/four thousand warriors, with those of 
Fesule and the Cottian Alps, were amon^ the last who maintained their inde- 
pendence ; and their gallant resistance, which almost tired the patience, deserved 
the esteem, of the conqueror. His prudence refused to subscribe the safe 
conduct which they asked, to join their brethren of Ravenna ; but they saved, 

(101) Besides Procoplus, perbaps too Roman, ne Uie Chronicles of Marias and Mareeninns, Jonaadei^ 
(la Saocesi. Regn. in Muratorl, torn. 1. p. 941), and Greiorj of Tonia (I. ill. c. 3S. in torn, li: of the HIs- 
•loriana of France). Gregory supposes a defeat of Beluarius, who, la Almoin (de OesUs Fraac 1. IL «. 
93, in torn. iU. p. 50). is slain hj the Franks. 

(109) Agathlss. 1. 1. p. 14, 15. Could be have seduced .or sabdued Uie Geplda or LooBbardi of Patt- 
nonia, the Greek historian is confident that be must have been destroyed in Thrace. 

(103) The king pointed bis spear— the bull OTertumed a tree on hli head—he expired the same day. 
Smh Is the story of Agathius ; but tiie original historians of France (torn. U. p. 908. 403. 558. 607,) *» 
pate his death to a fever. 

(104) Without losing myself in a labyrinth of species and names—the auroefas, nnis, bisons, babalan, 
ionasus, buffalo, Jfce. (Buffon, Hist. Nat. tom. xl and Supplement, torn. ill. vL) it Is ceruin, that In tha 

.flish century a laige wild species of homed cattle was bunted in the great ftiesls of the Voages ia Lor- 
«4iUne, aud the Ardennes, ureg. Turon. tom. it. 1. z. c. 10, p. 360 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 91 

by an honourable capitulation, one moiety at least of their wealth, with the 
£fee alternative of retiring peaceably to their estates, or enlisting to serve the 
emperor in his Persian wars. The multitudes which yet adhered to the 
standard of Viti^es, far surpassed the number of the Roman troops; but neither 
prayers, nor defiance, nor the extreme daneer of his most faithful subjects, 
could tempt the Gothic king beyond the fortifications of Ravenna. These 
fortifications were, indeed, impregnable to the assaults of art or violence ; and 
when Belisarius invested the capital, he was soon convinced that famine only 
could tame the stubborn spirit ot the Barbarians. The sea, the land, and the 
channels of the Po werejguarded by the vigilance of the Roman general ; and 
his morality extended the rights of war to the practice of poisoning the 
waters,(l05) and secretly firing the granaries(l06) of a besi^;ed city.^tO?) 
While be pressed the blockade of Ravenna, he was surprised by the arrival ot 
two ambassadors from Constantinople, with a treaty of peace, which Justinian 
had imprudently signed, without deigning to consult the author of his victory. 
By this disgraceful and precarious agreement, Italy and the Gothic treasure 
were divided, and the provinces beyond the Po were left with the regal title to 
the successor of Theodoric. The ambassadors were eae^er to accomplish this 
salutary commission; the captive Viliges accepted, with transport, the unex- 
pected offer of a crown ; honour was less prevalent among the Goths, than the 
want and appetite of food ; and the Roman chiefs, who murmured at the con- 
tinuance of the war, professed implicit submission to the commands of the 
emperor. If Belisarius had possessed only the courage of a soldier, the laurel 
would have been snatched from his hand oy timid and envious counsels ; but 
in this decbive moment, he resolved, with tbe magnanimity of a statesman, to 
sustain alone tbe danger and merit of generous disobedience. Each of his 
officers gave a written opinion that the siege of Ravenna was impracticable 
and hopeless : the general then rejected the treaty of partition, and declared 
bis own resolution of leadin&r Vitiges in chains to the feet of Justinian. The 
Goths retired with doubt and dismay : this peremptonr refusal deprived them 
of tbe onljf signature which they could trust, and filled their minds with a iust 
apprehension, that a sagacious enemy had discovered the full extent of tneit 
deplorable state. They compared tne fame and fortune of Belisarius with the 
weakness of their ill-fated king'; and the comparison suggested an extraordinaiy 

>roject,to which Vitiges, with apparent resignation, was compelled to acquiesce. 

Partition would ruin the strength, exile would disgrace the honour, of the 
nation ; but they offered their arms, their treasures, and the fortifications ot 
Ravenna, if Belisarius would disclaim the authority of a master, accept the 
tchoice of the Goths, and assume, as he had deserved, the kingdom of Italy. 
3f the false lustre of a diadem could have tempted the loyalty of a faithtui 
-subject, his prudence must have foreseen the inconstancy of the Barbarians, 
and his rational ambition would prefer the safe and honourable station of a 
Roman general. Even the patience and seeming satisfaction with which he 
entertained a proposal of treason, m^ht be susceptible of a malignant inter- 
pretation. But the lieutenant of Justinian was conscious of his own rectitude ; 
he entered into a dark and crooked path, as it might lead to the voluntary sub- 
mission of the Goths ; and his dexterous policy persuaded them that he was 
disposed to comply with their wishes, without engaging an oath or a promise 
for the performance of a treaty which he secretly abhorred. The day of the 

(105) In Uie ife^e of Auzliiramf Iw firtt laboured to demolish an old aqaeduct, and tben cart Into Uie 
atieam, L dead bodies; 3. miactaieTOUfl herbs; and 3. quick-lime^ which Is named (says Procoplus, 1. li. 
^99), Ttravof by the ancients; by the modems avPs^os* Yet both words are used as synonymous in 
Galen, Dioscorides, and Luclan. Hen. Steph. Thesnu. Ling. Grac. torn. 111. p. 7i& 

O06) The Goths suspected Mathasulotha as an accomplice in Uie mischief, which perhapa was occa- 
rioned by accidental lightning. 

(107) In strict philosophy, a limitation of the rights of war seems to Imply nonsense and contradiction. 
GrotluaMmseir l« lost In an Idle distinction between tbe Jnsnatum and ihe Jus gentium, between poison 
and InfecUon. He balances In one scale the pamaffes of Homer (Odyss. A. 959, Jcc.) and Planis (1. 11. e. 
90, No. 7, ult.) : and in the other, the examples of Solon (Pausanlus, I. z. c 37,) and BetiBariua. Bee his 
*rrai work De Jure Belli et Pads (I. lil. c. 4, s. 15, 16, 17, and in Baibeyrac's version, torn. II. p. 9S7, Ac.) 
Yet I can understand the benefit and validity of an agreement, tacit or express, mutually to abatain froa 
^certain n;odc of hostility Am> tlic Amphlctyonlc oath In Eschinev, de FalsA Legatione 



i: 



n THE DECLINE AND FALT. 

surrender of Ravenna was stipulated by the Gothic ambassadors : a fleet laden 
with provisions sailed as a welconie ^uest into the deepest recess of the harbour . 
the gates were opened to the fancied kinfi" of Italy ; and Belisarius, without 
meeting an enemy, triumphantly marched through the streets of an impregnable 
city.(108) The Komans were astonished by their success : the multitude of 
tall and robust Barbarians were confounded by the image of their own patience * 
and the masculine females, spittii^ in the faces of their sons and husbands, most 
bitterly reproached them for betraying their dominion and freedom to these 

Sigmies of the south, contemptible in their numbers, diminutive in their stature, 
lefore the Goths could recover from the first surprise, and claim the accom- 
plishment of their doubtful hopes, the victor established his power in Ravenna^ 
beyond the danger of repentance and revolt. Vitiges, who perhaps had 
attempted to escape, was honourably guarded in his palace ;(109) the flower 
of the Gothic jToutn were selected for the service of the emperor ; the remainder 
of the people were dismissed to their peaceful habitations in the southern pro- 
vinces ; and a colony of Italians was invited to replenish the depopulated city. 
The submission of the capital was imitated in the towns and riflages of Italy ; 
which had not been subdued, or even visited, by the Romans ; and the inde- 
pendent Goths, who remained in arms at Pavia and Verona, were ambitious 
only to become the subjects of Belisarius. But his inflexible loyalty rejected, 
except as the substitute of Justinian, their oaths of alleeiance ; and be was not 
offended by the reproach of their deputies, that he rather chose to be a slave 
than a king. 

After the second victory of Belisarius, envy again whispered, Justinian 
listened, and the hero was recalled. ** The remnant of the Gothic war was no 
longer worthy of his presence : a jgracious sovereign was impatient to reward 
his services, and to consult his wisdom : and he alone was capable of defending 
the East against the innumerable armies of Persia." Belisarius understood the 
suspicion, accepted the excuse, embartced at Ravenna his spoils and trophies ; 
ancl proved, by his ready obedience, that such an abnipt removal from the 
government oi Italy was not less unjust than it might nave been indiscreet. 
The emperor received with honourable courtesy both Vitiges and his more 
noble consort ; and as the king of the Goths conformed to the Athanasian faith, 
he obtained, with a rich inheritance of lands in Asia, the rank of senator and 
patrician. (110) Every spectator admired, without peril, the strength and sta- 
ture of the young Barbarians ; they adored the majesty of the throne, and pro- 
mised to shed their blood in the service of their benefactor. Justinian deposited 
in the Byzantine palace the treasures of the Gothic monarchy. A flattering 
senate was sometimes admitted to gaze on the magnificent spectacle ; but it wa» 
enviously secluded from the public view : and the conqueror of Italy renounced 
without a murmur, perhaps without a sign, the well-earned honours of a second 
triumph. His glor^ was indeed exalted above all external pomp ; and the 
faint and hollow praises of the court were supplied, even In a servile age, by the 
respect and admuation of his country. Whenever he appeared in the streets 
and public places of Constantinople, Belisarius attracted and satisfied the eyes 
of the people. His lofty stature and madestic countenance fulfilled their expec- 
tations of a hero ; the meanest of his fellow-citizens were emboldened by his 
gentle and gracious demeanour; and the martial train which attended his foot- 

(108) RaveniM wm tak6Q,iioC la Uie jtt MO, bat la Um latter end of S30; and Pacl (torn. iL> 9890 
It recdOed by Maratori (Annall d^Italia, lom. T.p. d», who pcovei, from aa orialnal act on Papyn» 
(AuUqait. Italic Medii JEy\, torn. U. diiMrt. zxzll. p. 9Sah-vm. MaflU, iMoria DiplomaLp. 155—100), 
ihat before the 3d of January, 540, peace and free oorreMoadeoee were restored between Ravenna amv 
Faensa. 

(100) He wai eelxed by Joha Uie Sangnlnary, bat an oaUi or eaerament wai pledged fbr his safety 
In the BasUfca JulU (Hist. Hlsc«U. L xvii. In Maratori, torn. 1. p. 107). Aaastasias On Vlt Pont. p. 40,) 
gives a dark but probable aeoount Montlbacon Is quoted by Msscou (Hist, of Uie Gerratna. zil. SI), 
for a TotiFS shield represenUng the capacity of Vttfges, and now in Uie coUecUon of Signorliandl, at 
Some. 

(110) Vitiges Uved two years at ConsUnUnopte, and Imperatorls in alfectA MneictM (or oonlunctusi 
rebus exeearlt humanis. Bis widow Matktutuenta, Uie wife and mother of the patricians, the elder an« 
youngpr Germanus, united Uie streams of Anician and Amali b!ood (JomaL.ies, c. 00, p. »1. in Mara- 
tori, tarn. 1.) 



OF THE ROMAN £MPIR£. 93 

steps, left his person more accessible than in a day of battle. Seven thousand 
horsemen, matchless for beauty and valour, were maintained in the service, ' 
and at the private expense, of the general.(lll) Their prowess was always 
conspicuous in single combats, or in the foremost ranks ; and both parties con- 
fessed, that in the siege of Rome, the guards of Beiisarius had alone vanquished 
the Barbarian host. Their numbers were continually alimented by the bravest 
and most faithful of the enemy ; and hb fortunate captives, the Vandals, the 
Moors, and the Goths, emulated the attachment of his domestic followers. By 
the union of liberality and Justice, he acouired the love of the soldiers, without 
alienating the affections ofthe people. The sick and wounded were relieved 
with medicines and money : and still more eflScaciously, by the healing visits 
and smiles of their commander. The loss of a weapon or a horse was instantly 
repaired, and each deed of valour was rewarded by the ridi and honourabie 
gifts of a bracelet or a collar, which were rendered more precious by the judg- 
ment of Beiisarius. He was endeared to the husbandmen, by the peace and 
plenty which they enjoyed under the shadow of his standard. Instead of beine 
injured, the country was enriched by the march of the Roman armies : and 
such was the rigid discipline of their camp, that not an apple was gathered 
from the tree, not a path could be traced in the fields of com. Beiisarius was 
chaste and sober. In the license of a military life, none could boast that thej 
had seen bim intoxicated with wine : the most beautiful captives of the Gothic 
or Vandal race were offered to his embraces ; but he turned aside from their 
charms, and the husband of Antonina was never suspected of violating the laws 
of conjugal fidelity. The spectator and historian of his exploits has observed, 
that amidst the perils of war, he was darii^ without rashness, prudent without 
fear, slow or rapid according to the exigencies of the moment ; that in the 
deepest distress, he was animated by real or apparent hope, but that he was 
inoaest and humble in the most prosperous fortune. By these virtues, he eaualled 
or excelled the ancient masters of the military art Victory, by sea ana land, 
attended his arms. He subdued Africa, Italy, and the adiacent islands, led 
away captives the successors of Genseric and Theodoric; filled Constantinople 
with the spoils of their palaces, and in the space of six years recovered half the 
provinces of the Western empire. In his fame and merit, in wealth and powei^ 
he remained, without a rival, the first ofthe Roman subjects : the voice of envy 
could only magnify his dangerous importance ; and the emperor might applaud 
his own discemii^ spirit, which bad discovered and raised the genius of 
Beiisarius. 

It was the custom of the Roman triumphs, that a slave should be placed 
behind the chariot to remind the conqueror of the instability of fortune, and the 
infirmities of human nature. Procopius, in his Anecdotes, has assumed that 
servile and ungrateful office. The generous reader may cast away the libel, 
but the evidence of facts will adhere to his memoiy ; and he will reluctantly 
confess, that the fame, and even the virtue of Beiisarius, were polluted by the 
lust and cruelty of his wife ; and that the hero deserved an appellation which 
may not drop from the pen of the decent historian. The mother of Anto- 
ninafllsWas a theatrical prostitute^ and both her father and grandfather exer- 
cised at Thessalonica and Constantinople the vile, though lucrative, profession 
of charioteers. In the various situations of their fortune, she became the com- 
panion, the enemy, the servant, and the favourite, of the empress Theodora : 
these loose and ambitious females had been connected by similar pleasures ; 
they were separated by the jealousy of vice, and at length reconciled by the 
partnership of guilt, fiefore her marriage with Beiisarius, Antonina baa one 
husband and many lovers ; Photius, the son of her former nuptials, was of an 

(111) ProeopliM, Goth, t iU. c. 1. Aimon, a French monk of Uio sith oentiuy, who ha4 obtained, and 
ba« diallf ored, tome aythantle ialiNaMtftoii of BdiMriuiL inantlons, tn his nana, 13,000 putH or ilaTe*^ 
mum DTopriia alimui itlpeDdUa-beaidea 18,000 wldiert (Hisloriana of France, torn, til De Gestia Franc I. 

(119) xbe'dilfgenoe of Alemannoa couM add irat attle to the four flnt and moat carious eba|itera of tha 
'- ' - Of these strange Anecdotes, a part nay be true, becanse probable— and apart true, because 

I the fonner, and the latter he eottld scarcely tfaamt* 



Ti 



THE DECLINE AND FALL 

. to distinguish himself at the siege of Naples ; and it was not till the autum» 
her age and beauty (113) that she indulged a scandalous attachment to a 
Tbracian youth. Theodosius had been educated in the Eunomian heresy ^ 
the African yoyage was consecrated by the baptism and auspicious name of the 
first soldier wno embarked ; and the proselyte was adopted into the family o£ 
his spiritual parents,f 114) Belisarius and Antonina. Before they touched the 
shores of Africa, this noly kindred degenerated into sensual love ; and as Anto-^ 
nina soon overleaped the bounds of modesty and caution, the Roman general 
was alone ignorant of his own dishonour. During their residence at Carthage, 
he surprisea the two lovers in a subterraneous chamber, solitaiy, warm, and 
almost naked. Anger flashed from his eje&, *' With the help of this young man," 
said the unblushing Antonina, " I was secreting our most precious effects from 
the knowledge of Justinian." The youth resumed his garments, and the pious 
husband consented to disbelieve the evidence of his own senses. From this 
pleasing and perhaps voluntary delusion, Belisarius was awakened at Syracuse* 
by the officious information of Macedonia : and that female attendant, after 
requiring an oath for her security, produced two chamberlains, who, like her- 
self, had often beheld the adulteries of Antonina. A hasty flight into Asia 
saved Theodosius from the justice of an injured husband, who had signified to 
one of his guards the order of his death ; but the tears of Antonina, and her 
artful seductions, assured the credulous hero of her innocence ; and he stooped, 
against his faith and judgment, to abandon those imprudent friends who had 
presumed to accuse or doubt the chastity of his wife. The revenge of a guilty 
woman is implacable and bloody : the unfortunate Macedonia, with the two 
witnesses, were secretly arrested oy the minister of her cruelty: their tongues, 
were cut out, their bodies were hacked into small pieces, and their remains 
were cast into the sea of Syracuse. A rash, though judicious saying of Con- 
stantine, ^ I would sooner have punished the aaultress than the lM>y," was 
deeply remembered by Antonina ; and two years afterward, when despair had 
armea that officer against his general, her sanguinary advice decided and 
hastened his execution. Even the indignation of rhotius was not foi^iven by 
hJ« mother ; the exile of her son prepared the recall of her lover ; and I'heo- 
dosius condescended to accept the pressing and humble invitation of the con- 
queror of Italy. In the absolute direction of his household, and in the impor- 
tant commissions of peace and war,(ll5) the favourite youth most rapidly 
acquired a fortune of four hundred thousand pounds sterling ; and after their 
return to Constantinople, the passion of Antonina at least continued ardent and 
unabated. But fear, devotion, and lassitude, perhaps, inspired Theodosius 
with more serious thoughts. He dreaded the busy scandal of the capital, and 
the indiscreet fondness of the wife of Belisarius ; escaped from her embraces, 
and retiring to £phesus» shaved bis head, and took refuge in the sanctuary of a 
monastic lite. The despair of the new Ariadne could scarcely have been 
excused by the death of her husband. She wept, she tore her hair, she filled 
the palace with her cries : ** she had lost the dearest of friends, a tender, a 
faithful, a laborious friend I" But her warm entreaties, fortified by the prayers 
of Belisarius, were insufficient to draw the holy monk from the solitude of 
Ephesus. It was not till the general moved forward for the Persian war, that 
Theodosius could be tempted to return to Constantinople ; and the short inter 
val before the departure of Antonina herself was boldly devoted to love and 
pleasure. 

A philosopher may pity and forgive the infirmities of female nature, from 
which he receives no real injury; but contemptible is the husband who feels, 

(113) Procoplos iiuinuates (Aneedot c 4,) diat, when BeliMuiiu letarned to Italy (A. D. 543), Antontaa 
was Fucty yean of age. A forced, but more polite conatructioa, which refers Uiat date to the moment 
when he was writing (A. D. 550), would be oompaUbie with the manhood of Phothia (Gothic L L c 10) 
In 536. 

(114) Cc mpare Uie Vandalic War (I. i. c. IS), witii Uie Anecdotes (c I.) and Alemannus (p. 8, 3). Thi* 
mode of baptismal adopUon was revived by Leo the phikiaopher. 

(115) In November, 637, Photiua arrested the pope (Liberat. Brev. c. SS, Pagi, tom. iL p. SBBX Aboat 
the end of 530, Belisarius sent Theodosiua— ,«» nf Miria rv ovrs e^crwr*— on an Important and 'ttcraUT* 
GommiBslon to Ravenna (Goth. 1. ii. c 18). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 95 

and yet endures, bis own infamy in that of his wife. Anionina pursued her son 
with implacable hatred; and the g^allant Photius(116) was exposed to her 
secret persecutions in the camp beyond the Tigris. Enraged by bis own wrongs 
and by tne dishonour of hb Diodd« he cast away in his turn the sentiments of 
nature, and revealed to Belisarius the turpitude of a woman who bad violated alF 
the duties of a mother and a wife. From the surprise and indignation of the 
Roman general^ his former credulity appears to nave been sincere : he em- 
braced the knees of the son of Antonina, adjured him to remember his obliga- 
tions rather than bis birth, and confirmed at the altar their holy vows of revenge 
and mutual defence. The dominion of Antonina was impaired by absence ; 
and when she met her husband, on bis return from the Persian confines, Belisa- 
rius, in h» first and transient emotions, confined her person, and threatened her 
life. Photius was more resolved to punish, and less prompt to pardon : he 
flew to Ephesus; extorted fix>m a trusty eunuch of bis mother the full confes- 
sion of her guilt; arrested Theodosius and his treasures in the church of 
St. John the Apostle, and concealed his captives, whose execution was only 
delayed, in a secure and sequestered fortress of Cilicia. Such a darings outrage 
against public justice could not pass with impunity ; and the cause ofAntonina 
was espoused Dv the empress, whose favour she had deserved by the recent 
services of the disgrace ol a prefect, and the exile and murder of a pope. At 
the end of the campaign Belisarius was recalled : he complied, as usual, with 
the imperial mandate. His mind was not prepared for rebellion ; bis obedi- 
ence, however adverse to the dictates of honour, was consonant to the wishes 
of his heart ; and when he embraced bis wife, at the command, and periiaps in 
the presence, of tbe empress, the tender husband was disposed to foi^ive or to 
6e iofi^ven. The bounty of Theodora reserved for her companion a more pre- 
cious lavour. ** I have found,** she said, ^ mv dearest patrician, a pearl of ines- 
timable value : it has not yet been viewed by any mortal eve ; but the sight 
and the possession of tbis jewel are destined for my friend.''* As soon as the 
curiosity and impatience of Antonina were kindled, the door of a bedchamber 
was thrown open, and she beheld her lover, whom the diligence of the eunuchs 
bad discovered in his secret prison. Her silent wonder burst into passionate 
Exclamations of gratitude ana jov, and she named Theodora her queen, her 
benefactress, and her saviour. Tbe monk of Ephesus was nourished in the 
palace with luxury and ambition ; but instead of assuming, as he was promised, 
the command of the Roman armies, Theodosius expired in the first fatigues of 
an amorous interview.! The grief of Antonina could onlj be assuaged by the 
sufferings of her son. A youtn of consular rank, and a sickly constitution, was 
punished, without a trial, like a malefactor and a slave : yet such was the con- 
stancy of bis mind, that Photius sustained the tortures of the scourge and the 
rack,^ without violating the faith which he had sworn to Belisarius. Afler this 
fruitless cruelty, the son of Antonina, while his mother feasted with the empress, 
was buried in ber subterraneous prisons, which admitted not the distinction o« 
night and day. He twice escaped to the most venerable sanctuaries of Con- 
stantinople, the churches of St. Sophia and of the Virgin ; but his tyrants were 
insensible of religion as of pity ; and the helpless youth, amidst the clamours of 
the clei^ and people, was twice dragged from the altar to the dur^on. His 
third attempt was more successful. At the end of three years, tne prophet 
Zachariah, or some mortal friend, indicated the means of an escape : be eludec} 
the spies and guards of the empress, reached the holy sepulchre of Jerusalem^ 
embraced tbe profession of a monk ; and the abbot Photius was employed after 
the death of Justinian, to reconcile and regulate the churches of E%ypt. The 
son ofAntonina suffered all that an enemy can inflict : her patient husoand im- 
posed on himself tbe more exquisite misery of violating bis promise and desert- 
iik bis friend. 

Ill the succeeding campaign, Belisarius was again sent against tbe Persians : 
be saved the East, but he o£nded Theodora, and perhaps the emperor himself. 

(116) Tbeonhftnes (Chrnnofraph. p. 904,) styles him PkoUnua, Uie mi-iii-law of Beilmrius ; and iM 1& 
eop:ed by the Hiatoria Mtooella oiid Anastasiua. 



U THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Tbe malady of Justinian bad countenanced the rumour of his death ; and the 
Roman general, on tbe supposition of that probable event, spoke tbe free lan- 
l^uage of a citizen and a soldier. His collea&^ue Buzes, who concurred in tht 
same sentiments, lost his rank, bis liberty, ana bis health, by the persecution ot 
tbe empress ; but the disgrace of Belisarius was alleviated oy the dignity of his 
own character and the influence of his wife, who might wbb to humble, but 
could not desire to ruin, the partner of her fortunes. Even his removal was 
coloured by the assurance, that the sinking state of Italy would be reprieved by 
.be single presence of its conqiieror. But no sooner had he returned, alone and 
defenceless, than a hostile commission was sent to the East, to seize his treasures, 
and criminate his actions ; the guards and veterans who followed his private 
banner, were distributed among the chiefs of the army, and even the eunuchs 
presumed to cast lots for the partition of his martial domestics. When he passed 
with a small and sordid retinue through the streets of Constantinoole, his forlorn 
appearance excited the amazement and compassion of tbe peojple. Justinian 
and Theodora received him with cold ii^ratitude ; the servile crowd, witR 
insolence and contempt ; and in the evening, he retired with trembling steps to 
his deserted palace. An indisposition, feigned or real, had conGned Antonina 
to her apartment : and she walked disdainfully silent in the adjacent portico, 
while Belisarius threw himself on his bed, and expected, in an aerony of grief 
and terror, the death which he had so oflen braved under the walls of Rome. 
Long ailer sunset a messenger was announced from the empress ; he opened 
w i th anxious curiosity th$ letter which contained the sentence of his fate. ^ You 
cannot be ignorant bow much you have deserved my displeasure. I am not 
insensible of the services of Antonina. To her merits and intercession I have 
granted your life, and permit you to retain a part of your treasures, which mieht 
be justly forfeited to the state. Let your mtituae, where it is due, be dis- 
played, not in words, but in your future benaviour." I know not how to be- 
lieve or to relate the transports with which the hero is said to have received 
this ignominious pardon. He fell prostrate before his wife, he kissed the feet 
of his saviour, and he devoutly promised to live the grateful and submissive 
slave of Antonina. A fine of one nundred and twenty niousand pounds sterling 
was levied on the fortunes of Belisarius ; and with the office of count, or master 
of the royal stables, he accepted the conduct of the Italian war. At his depar- 
ture from Constantinople, his friends, and even the public, were persuaded, 
that as soon as he regained his freedom, he would renounce his dissimulation, 
and that his wife, Theodora, and perhaps the emperor himself^ would be sacri 
ficed to the just revenge of a virtuous rebel. Their hopes were deceived ; and 
the unconquerable patience and loyalty of Belisarius appear either bd<m or 
above the character of a JON.Cll?) 



CHAPTER XLII. 

State of the Barbaric world^-Estahliskment of the Lombards on the Danube- 
Trtoes and inroads (fthe Sdavomant— Origin^ eiTipirc, and embassies of the 
Turks-^The fli^^ cf the Avars — Chosroes L or Nwhirvan, king of Persia-^ 
Hisprosperous reign and wars 7»ith the Romans-^the Colchian or Lazic voar 
— T»e Ethiopians. 

[A. D. 527—665.] Our estimate of persoilal merit is relative to the common 
faculties of mankind. The aspiring efforts of genius or virtue, either in active 
or speculative life, are measured, not so much by their real elevation, as by the 
height to which they ascend above the level or their age or country : and the 
same stature, which in a people of giants would pass unnoticed, must appear 

(117) Tbe condnuatnr of tbe Cbronicle of Maroellinos glres, in a few deeent worda, Uie subatance of 
the Anecdotes: Beiisartiu de Oriente evocatus, in offensani periculumque incurreni grave, at Invidia 
■uldacens ruisua remltUiur kc Italiain (p. H). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 97 

coospicdous in a race of pigmies. Leonidas, and bis three hundred companions, 
deyoted their h'ves at Thermopylae ; but the education of the infant, tne boy, 
and the man, bad prepared, ana almost ensured, thb memorable sacrifice ; and 
etch Spartan would approve, rather than admire, an act of duly, of which him* 
self and eight thousand of his fellow-citizens were equally capable.(l) The 
great Pompey might inscribe on bis trophies that he had defeated in battle two 
millions of enemies, and reduced fiAeen nundied cities from the lake Maeotis on 
the Red Sea :(3) but the fortune of Rome flew before his eagles ; the nations 
were oppressed by their own fears, and the invincible legions which he com' 
mandea had been formed by the habits of conquest and tl^ discipline of ages. 
Id thb view, the character of Belisarius may be deservedly placed above the 
heroes of the ancient republics. His imperfections flowedffrom the contagion 
of the times : his virtues were his own, the free gift of nature or reflection ; he 
raised himself without a master or a rival ; and so inadequate were the arms 
committed to his hand, that his sole advantage was derived from the pride and 
presumption of his adversaries. Under his command, the subjects ot Justinian 
often deserved to be called Romans ; but the unwariike appellation of Greeks 
was imposed as a term of reproach by the haughty Goths ; who affected to 
blush, that they must dispute tne kingdom of Italy with a nation of tragedians, 
pantomimes, and pirate8.(3) The climate of Asia has indeed been found less 
congenial than that of Europe, to military spirit : those populous countries were 
enervated by luzuiy, despotism, and superstition ; and the monks were more 
expensive and more numerous than the soldiers of the East. The regular force 
of the empire had once amounted to six hundred and forty-five thousand men : 
it was reduced, in the time of Justinian, to one hundred and fifty thousand ; and 
this number, large as it may seem, was thinlv scattered over the sea and land ; 
ro Spain and Italy, in Africa and Egypt, on the banks of the Danube, the coast 
of the Eaxine, aiKl the frontiers of Persia. The citizen was exhausted, yet the 
soldier was unpaid ; his poverty was mischievously soothed by the privilege oi 
rapine and indolence : and the tardy payments were detained and mtercepted 
by the fraud of those agents who usuip, without courage or danger, the emolu 
ments of war. Public and private distress recruited the armies of the state ; 
but in the field, and still more in the presence of the enemy, their numbers were 
aiways defective. The want of national spirit was supplied by the precarious 
uitb and disorderiy service of Barbarian mercenaries. Even military honour, 
which has often survived the loss of virtue and freedom, was almost totally 
extinct. The generals, who were multiplied beyond the example of former 
times, laboured only to prevent the success, or to sully the reputation of their 
colleagues ; and they had been taught by experience, that if merit sometimes 
provoked the jealousy, error, or even guilt, would obtain the indulgence of a 
gracious em{>eror.Q4) In such an age, the triumphs of Belisarius, and afterward 
of Narses, shine with incomparable lustre ; but they are encompassed with the 
darkest shades of disgrace and calamity. While the lieutenant of Justinian 
subdued the kingdoms of the Goths and Vandals, the emperor,(5) timid, though 
ambitious, balanced the forces of the Barbarians, fomented their divisions by 
flattery and falsehood, and invited by his patience and liberality the repetition 
of injuriea.(6) The keys of Carthage, Rome, and Ravenna were presented to 

(1) It will be a pleMura, not a task, to read Herodotu 0- vtl- e. 104. 134, p. S50. SIS). Th« conver • 
•ation of Xerxea and Demaratiu at ThemiopytaB, to <me of the moH hrtamdng and nMiral aoaoM in 
M«ory. It WM llie torture of tbe lojral Spartan to beiiold, wlUi anguish and leinoiBe, tbe Tinue of 
Ids coontrj. 



(A8eetiitepfoodlaMrl|pUonlaPHny(nM.Natnr.Til.9f7y. Few aen te^ mora enwisitdy tasted 
of dory and diagnce ; nor could Juvenal (Batir. z.) produce a more strikinf example of tlie vteissitudei 
of fortune, and thSTanlly of buman wiehea. 

(3) Tpaiag. . . .dh&r ra wptnpa witm tt IraXiov knmra uSw, on im rptfyttittt mi vmmt Xttnivraf- 
Thb last eplcbet of TrocopliM Is too noMy translaled by pirates ; naval Ui&eves Is the proper word : strip, 
fen of garments eUiieff for injury or insult (DenosUMnea, contra Conon. in Beiske Orator. Gr»c tom. U. 

(4)8ee the third and feurUl books of thaGothie War: Um writer of Uia Anecdotes camioi aggravate 



(5) Agathina,!. 9, p. 157,158. Be eonflnes thb weakness of tiie emperor and Um emplm to the old 
age of Jitsiittinn ; but alas ! he was never young. 

(6) This mIsehieTous policy, whteh Piooopios (Anecdot. c lA,) imputes to the emperor, to revealed ii 

Vol. III.— H 



98 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

tbeir conqueror, while Antiocb was destroyed by the Persians, and Jusdmaii 
trembled for (he safety of Constantinople. 

Even the Gothic victories of Belisarius were prejudicial to the state, since- 
they abolished the important barrier of the Upper Danube, which had been so 
faithfully guarded by Theodoric and his daughter. For the defence of Italy,- 
the Gotns evacuatea Pannonia and Noricuro, which they left in a peaceful and 
flourishing condition: the sovereignty was claimed by the emperor of the 
Romans ; the actual possession was abandoned to the boldness of the first 
invader. On the opposite bank of the Danube, the plains of Upper Hungary 
and the Transylvania n hills were possessed, since tnp death of Attila, by the 
tribes of the Gepidae, who respected the Gothic arms, and despised, not indeed 
the gold of the Romans, but tne secret motive of their annual subsidies. The 
vacant fortifications of the river were instantly occu|)ied by these Barbarians r 
their standards were planted on the walls of Sirmium and Belgrade ; and the 
ironical tone of their apology aggravated this insult on the majesty of the 
empire. ^ So extensive, O Cesar, are your dominions ; so numerous are your 
cities ; that you are continually seeking for nations to whom, either in peace 
or war, you may relinquish these useless possessions. The Gepidse are your 
brave and faithful allies ; and if they have anticipated your gifts, they have 
shown ajust confidence in your bounty." Their presumption was excused by 
the mocle of revenge which Justinian embraceo. Instead of asserting the 
rights of a sovereign for the protection of his subjects, the emperor invited a 
strange people to invade and possess the Roman provinces between the Danube 
and the Alps ; and the ambition of the Gepids was checked by the rising 

Sower and fame of the Lombaiu)8.(7) Tnis corrupt appellation has been 
ifiused in the thirteenth century by the merchants and bankers, the Italian 
posterity of these savage warriors ; but the original name of Langobardi it 
expressive only of the peculiar length and fashion of their beards. I am not 
disposed either to question or to justify their Scandinavian origin ;(8) nor to 
pursue the migrations of the Lombards through unknown regions and marvelkrat 
adventures. About the time of Au^stus and Trajan, a ray of historic light 
breaks on the darkness of their antiquities, and they are discovered, for tne 
first time, between the Elbe and the Oder. Fierce, beyond the example oi 
the Germans, they delighted to propagate the tremendous belief, that their 
heads were formed like the heaas of Sop, and that they drank the blood of 
tbeir enemies whom they vanquished in battle. The smallness of their num* 
here was recruited by tne adoption of their bravest slaves ; and alone, amid 
their powerful neighlioun, they defended by arms their high-spirited indepen- 
dence. In the tempests of the north, which overwhelmed so many names and 
nations, this little bark of the Lombards still floated on the surface ; th^ gradu- 
ally descended toward the south and the Danube ; and at the end of (our hun- 
dred years they aeain appear with their ancient valour and renown. Their 
manners were not less ferocious. The assas^ation of a royal guest was exe- 
cuted in the presence, and by the command, of the king's daughter, who had 
been provoked by some words of insult, and disappointed by nis diminutive 
stature ; and a tribute, the price of blood, was imposed on the Lombards, by 
his brother, the king of the Heruli. Adversity revived a sense of moderation 
and justice, and the insolence of conquest was chastised by the aignal defeat 
and iireparable dispersion of the Heruli, who were seated in the southern 



hlsepMeto a Beythlan pnnoe, who ww e«iMMe of ondMitvidiiif it Ay» it p a n^ xm my^v^nrt, 
nyt AfadilM, 1. ▼. p. 170^ 171. 

(7) Gena Oeimui feritate (feroclore, nyi yeUelu PatereuhM of Uie Lombwdt (U. 106). LanfolMiidQt 
poncltu nobilltat. Plartmta ae valcBiiailaiia naUoiiibin tinea bob par obwquliUB wti pneHb et pericJi- 
taado lud wnt (Tacit de MnrlbiM Gamaa. e. 40). Sae likewiM Btrabo (1. rll p. 440). The beM geo- 
grapbera place tiMm beyoad Uie Elbe. Id tba bWioprle of Magdcbuffb aad tba niddie nareh of Braa- 
HmUiwh; and their ■Ito.-ttioa wiO agree wiUi Uie patriotic remark ofUie eouat de Hertsberg, that 

r Um Baibariaa ooBqueran inoed ftom the eaaw eoaatrtea which etiU pcoduoe Uie analee of 
i,* 

(8) The fiieaadtaarlan otlghi of the Oolha aad Lonabaida, aa atated by Paal Warnefrid, Miniaflied tba 
deacon, la attacked by ClaTerioa (Germania Antiq. 1. lU. c. M, p. 108, Ac) a native of Praaaia, aad dar 
ftadedby UroUua (Pmegoni. ad Hlat Goch. p. 9Bk dco the Bwediah ambaaaador. 



OP THE ROxMAN EMPIRE. 99 

pioyinces of PoIand.(9) The victories of the Lombards recomm^soded thetn 
to the friendship of the emperors : and at the solicitation of Justinian, they 
passed the Danube, to reduce, according to their treatj^, the cities of Noricuoa 
and the fortresses of Fannonia. But the spirit of rapine soon tempted them 
beyond these ample limits ; they wandered along the coast of the Hadriatic 
as far as Dyrrachium, and presumed, with familiar rudeness, to enter the towns 
and houses of their Roman allies, and to seize the captives who had escaped 
from their audacious hands. Thes>e acts of hostility, the sallies, as it might be 
pretended, of sonoe loose adventurers, were disowned by the nation, and excused 
by the emperor ; but the arms of the Lombards were more seriously engaged 
by a contest of thirty years, which was terminated only by the extirpation of 
the Gepidae. The hostile nations oAen pleaded their cause before the throne 
of Constantinople : and the crafty Justinian, to whom the Barbarians were 
almost edually odious, pronounced a partial and ambiguous sentence, and 
dexterously protracted the war by slow and ineffectual succours. Their 
strength was formidable, since the Lombards, who sent into the field several 
mynadt of soldiers, still claimed, as the weaker side, the protection of the 
Romans. Their spirit was intrepid ; yet such is the uncertainty of courage, 
that the two armies were suddenly struck with a panic ; they fled from each 
other, and the rival kings remained with their guards in the midst of an empty 
plain. A short truce was obtained ; but their mutual resentment again kindled ; 
and the remembrance of their shame rendered the next encounter more des- 
perate and bloody. Forty thousand of the Barbarians perished in the decisive 
battle, which broke the power of the Gepidse, transferred the fears and wishes 
of Justinian, and first displayed the character of Alboin, the youthful prince of 
the Lombards, and the future conqueror of Italy.(10^ 

The wild people who dwelt or wandered in the plains of Russia, Lithuania, 
and Poland, might be reduced in the age of Justinian, under the two g^ieat 
families of the BuloariansCH) and the Sclavoniaits. According to the 
Greek writers, the former, wno touched the Euxine and the lake Maeotus, 
derived from the Huns their name or descent ; and it is needless to renew the 
simple and well-known picture of Tartar manners. They were bold and dex- 
terous archers, who drank the milk and feasted on the Besh of their fleet and 
indefatigable horses j whose flocks and herds followed, or rather guided, the 
motions of their roving camps ; to whose inroads no country was remote or 
impervious, and who were practised in flight, though incapable of fear. The 
nation was divided into two powerful and hostile tribes, who pursued each other 
with fraternal hatred. They eagerly disputed the friendship or rather the 
eifts of the emperor ; and the distinction which nature had fixed between the 
faithful doe and the rapacbus wolf, was applied by an ambassador who received 
only verbal instructions from the mouth of his illiterate prince.(12) The Bul- 
garians, of whatsoever species, were equally attracted by Roman wealth ; 
they assumed a vague dominion over the Sclavonian name, and their rapid 
marofaes could only be stopped by the Baltic sea, or the extreme cold and 
poverty of the north. But tne same race of Sclavonians appears to have main- 
tained, in every age, the possession of the same countries. Their numerous 
tribes, however distant or adverse, used one common lanjg;uage(it was haisAr 
and irregular), and were known by the lesemblaoce of their form, which devi* 

(9) Two (kcts Id the narrative of Paal Dlaooniu (I. 'I. e. 90,) are expravlTe of iMUhmal mamien: f. 
Dum ad tahwlmm luderet— while he played at draughta. 9l Camponim vtridaolla Umm, The coltlvatiOD 
of flax wppoeea propertVf ooauneroe. agricttlture, and maoufacturea. 

(10) I have itwd, without undertaking to reconcile, the Acw In Procoplos (Oocta. L II. c 14, 1. III. e. 331 
34, 1. It. c. la 95)7Paul Diaconua (de QeMla LangobaMi, I. L & 1— S3, In M uraiori, Berlpi. Rerum ItaH- 
earam, torn. L p. 405—419), and Jornandee (de Suoeeee. Regnorum, p. MS). The patient reader maf 
draw aome light from MaMOU (Utat. of UMGermana, and AnnotaL xkln.) and de Boat (Hlat dee Feuptn^ 
Jtc. mm. Ix. X. zi.) 

(11) I adopt the appellaUon of Bulgariana, ttom Bnnodlua (In Fanegyr- Theodorlel, Opp. Strmond; to^ik 
L p. 1506, 1509), Jornandee (de Rebus Getlcia, e. 5, p. 194, et de Rwn. Suoeenlone, p. 949), TheopAaM» 
(pi 185), and the Chnwlclee of Caadodorlue and Maroellimie. The name of Huna la too vagae; tte 
tribes of the Cutturgurians and Uttnigurians are too minute and toobandL* 

(13) Procopiua (GoUi. I. iv. e. 19). HU verbal mpaeace (he owns himself an UUt6nleBaitaila»)l» 
deUveied as an epistle. The style is savage, figurative, and original. 

H ft 



100 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

ated from the swarthy Tartar, and approached, without attainiiig, the lofhr 
stature and fair complexion of the Germans. Four thousand six hundred vil- 
lage8(13) were scattered over the provinces of Russia and Poland, and their 
huts were hastily built of rough timber, in a country deficient both in stone and 
iron. Erected, or rather concealed, in the depth of forests, on the banks of 
rivers, or the edee of morasses, we may not perhaps, without flattery, compare 
them to the architecture of the beaver ; which they resembled in a double 
issue, to the land and water, for the escane of the savage inhabitant, an animal 
less cleanly, less diligent, and less social, than that marvellous quadruped. The 
fertility of the soil, rather than the labour of the natives, supplied the rustic 
plenty of the Sclavonians. Their sheep and homed cattle were lanre and 
numerous, and the fields, which thev sowed with millet and paDic,(14) afforded, 
in the place of bread, a coarse ana less nutritive food. The incessant rapine 
of their neighbours compelled them to buiy this treasure in the earth ; but on 
the appearance of a stranger, it was freely imparted by a people, whose 
unfavourable character is qualified by the epithets of chaste, patient, and hos^ 
pitable. As their supreme god, thev adored an invisible master of the thunder. 
The riven and the nymphs obtained their subordinate honours, and the j^pular 
worship was expressed m vows and sacrifices. The Sclavonians disdained to 
obey a despot, a prince, or even a magistrate ; but their experience was too 
narrow, their passions too headstrong, to compose a system of equal law or 
general defence. Some voluntary respect was yielded to age and valour ; but 
each tribe or village existed as a separate republic, and all must be persuaded 
where none could be compelled. They fought on foot, almost naked, and, 
except an unwieldy shield, without any defensive armour : their weapons ot 
offence were a bow, a quiver of small poisoned arrows, and a long rope, which 
they dexterously threw from a distance, and entangled their enemy in a running 
noose. In the field, the Sclavonian infantry were dangerous by their speeo^ 
agility, and hardiness : they swam, they dived, tbe^ remained under water, 
drawiqg their breath through a hollow cane ; and a river or lake was often the 
scene ^ their unsuspected ambuscade. But these were the achievements of 
spies or stragglers ; the military art was unknown to the Sclavonians : tbeit 
Dame was OMcure, and their conquests were ingIorious.(l5) 

I have marked the faint and general outline ofthe Sclavoni|ns and Bulgarians, 
without attempting to define their immediate boundaries, which were not accu 
rately known or respected by the Barbarians themselves. Their importance 
was measured by their vicinity to the empire : and the level country of Moldavia 
and Walachia was occupied oy the Antes,(16) a Sclavonian tribe, which swelled 
the titles of Justinian with an epithet of conauest.(l7) Against the Antes he 
erected the fortifications of the Liower Danuoe ; and laboured to secure the 
alliance of a people seated in the direct channel of northern inundation, an 
interval of two hundred miles between the mountains of Transylvania and the 
Euxine sea. But the Antes wanted power and inclination to stem the fuiy of 
the torrent : and the light-armed Sclavonians, from a hundred tribes, pursued 

(13) This wm la Um result of a particular liit, in a curious MS. flrafmeot of Uie year 550, found ia the 
library of Milan. The obscure seography of the times provokes and ezeretns the patience ofthe Count 
de Buat (lorn. zi. p. <»— IW). The Fcench aiiniMei often losei hiaMetf in a wilderaeM whkta requires 
m Saxon and Polisn ^ide. 



(14) Panicum miKum. See OolumdU, 1. ii. c. 0, p. 430, edit Oesner. Plln. Hist Natnr. zviU. M. 85. 
de a pap of millet, mlnaled with mare's miUi or blood. In the wealth of mooom 
I fteds poultry and not heroes. See the dictionaries of Bomare and Miller. 

(15) For tiM! name and nationf the altnation and maaners, of the Sclavonian, see the original evidence 



of tlie sixth century, in Proooplus (GotiL 1. li. c 98, 1. iii. c. 14), and the emneror 1 
(StrataiemaL i. U. c 5, apud Maaooa, Aanotat xxxi.) The siratafems of MauH 
only, as I undentaod. at the end of 8cheflbr*s edition of Arrlan*s Tactics^ at \ 



Mauritius or Maurice 
t sirataffsms of Maurice have been printed 

. irrian*s Tactics^ at tJpsal, 1664. (Fabric 

BiblioL OfBc. L Iv. e. 6, torn. UL p. STB), a scarce, and hitherto to me, an Inaccessible book. 

(16) Antes enrum fbftiaiiffii....Tayils«itttrapiduset vorUeosus in Histri lluenta furens devolvltor 
(Jomandes, c. 5, p. 104, edit. Murator. Procoplus, Goth. 1. HI. c. 14, et de Ediflc 1. iv. c 7). Yet Uie 
same Procoplua menthms die OoUis and Huns as neighbours) XnTovnrrv, to the Danube (de Edeflc L 
Iv. e. 1). 

07) The natioQal title of .Ailincs, ip the laws aqd inscriptions of Justinian, was adopted by his sue 
eessors, and is Justified by the ploua Ludewig (In Vit JusUniaa, p. 81^. It has straively puzsled the 
clviUanaof Uie middle tga. » i- / -^ v r 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, loi 

witb almost equal roeed the footsteps of the Bulgarian boise. The payment 
of one piece of e;o]a for each soldier, procured a safe and easy retreat through 
the country of tne Gepidse, ivho commanded the passage of the Upper Da-' 
nube.(18) The hopes or fears of the Barbarians ; their intestine union or dis- 
cord ; the accident of a frozen or shallow stream ; the prospect of harvest or 
▼intaee : the prosperity or distress of the Romans ; were the causes which pro« 
duced tne uniform repetition of annual visits,(19) tedious in the narrative, ar^ 
destructive in the event. The same year» and possibly the same month, in 
which Ravenna sunendered, was mariced by an invasion of the Huns or Bulga- 
rians, so dreadful that it almost elE^ced the memory of their past inroads. Th^y 
spread from the suburbs of Constantinoole to the Ionian ffulf, destroyed thirty- 
two cities or castles, rased Potida^, wnich Athens had ouilt, and Philip had 
besieged, and repassed the Danube, draeging at their horses' heels one hundred 
and twenty thousand of the subjects of Justinian. In a subsequent inroad the^ 
pierced the wall of the Thracian Chersonesus, eietirpated the habitations and 
the inhabitants, boldly traversed the Hellespoot, and returned to their compa 
nions laden with the spoils of Asia. Another party, which seemed a multitude 
in the eyes of the Romans, penetrated without opposition, from the straits of 
Thermopylae to the isthmus of Corinth ; and the last ruin of Greece has appeared 
an object too minute for the attention of history. The works which the empe- 
ror raised for the protection, but at the expense of his subjects, served only to 
disclose the weakness of some neglected part : and the walls, which by flatteiT 
had been deemed impregnable, were eftber deserted b^ the garrison, or scaled 
by the Barbarians. Three thousand Sclavonians, who insolently divided them* 
selves into two bands, discovered the weakness and miseiy of a triumphant 
reign. They passed the Danube and the Hebrus, vanquished the Roman gene- 
rals who dared to oppose their progress, and plundered with impunity, the cities 
of Illyricum and Thrace, each of which had arms and numbers to overwhelm 
their contemptible assailants. Whatever praise the boldness of the Sclavonians 
may deserve, it b sullied by the wanton and deliberate cruelty which they are 
accused of exercising on their prisoners. Without distinction of rank, or s^g^, 
or sex, the captives were impaled or flayed alive, or suspended between four 
posts, and beaten with clubs till they expired, or enclosed in some spacious 
Duilding, and left to perish in* the flames with the spoil and cattle which might 
impede the march of these savage victors.(SO) Pernaps a more impartial narra- 
tive would reduce the number, and qualify the nature of these homd acts ; and 
they mi^ht sometimes be excused by the cruel laws of retaliation, lu the siege 
-of Topirus,(21) whose obstinate defence had enraged the Sclavonians, they 
massacred fifteen thousand males ; but they spared the women and children ; 
the most valuable captives were always reserved for labour or ransom ; the 
servitude was not rigorous, and the terms of their deliverance were speedy and 
moderate. But the subject or the historian of Justinian, exhaled his just indig- 
nation in the lanniag^e of complaint and reproach ; and Procopius has oonn- 
dently affirmed, that in a reign of thirty-two years, each ammm inroad of the 
Barbarians consumed two hundred thousand of the inhabitants of the Roman 
empire. The entire population of Turkish Europe, which nearly corresponds 
witn the provinces of Justinian, would periiaps be incapable of supplying six 
millions of persons, the result of this incredible estimate.([22) 

In the mrast of these obscure calamities, Europe felt the shock of a revolution 
which first revealed to the world the name and nationof the Turks.* [A. D. 645.1 
Like Romulus, the foundertof that martial people was suckled by a she-wolf^ 

(18) Procopius. Goth. 1. iv. c 85. 

<19) An inroad of the Huns is connected, by Procoploi, whh a comet, perteps that of 881 (pttile. L 
ii. c. 4). AfaUiiaa <l. v. p. 154, 155,) borrowi from hit pradacenor some early flkcta. 

(90) ThecraelUea of tbo Sdavontana are related or magnilled by Proeopliu (Goth. 1. iil. c. 9S. 38). 
Por their mild and liberal behaviour to their prtaoncn, we may appeal to the authority, Kunewbat mon 
recent, of the emperor Maurice (Stratagem. I. II. e. 5). 

(31) Topirus waa situate near Philippi In Thrace, or Macedonia, opposite to the Isle of Thaioa, tmi9% 
days* Journey from Constantinople (CellariuB, torn. 1. p. 870. 840). 

(32) According to the malevolent testhnony of the Anecdotes (c. 18), these inroads b 
proviAceB south of the Danube to the state of a ScytUan wildemeis 



lot TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

who afterward made him (he father of a numerous progeny; and the represen- 
tation of that animal in the banners of the Turks, preserved the memoiy, or 
kather suggested the idea, of a fable, which was invented, without any mutual 
intercourse, by the shepherds of Latium and those of Scythia. At ibe equal 
distance of two thousand miles from the Caspian, the Icy, the Chinese, and the 
Bengal seas, a ridge of mountains is conspicuous, the centre, and perhaps the 
summit, of Asia ; which, in the language of different nations, has oeen styled 
Imaus, and Caf,(23) and Altai, and the golden mountains,*and the Girdle of the 
Earth. The sides of the hills were productive of minerals ; and the iron 
foi]^es,(24) for the purpoee of war, were exercised by the Turks, the most de- 
spised portion of the slaves of the great khan of the Ueougen. but their servi- 
tude could only last till a leader, bold and eloquent, should arise, to persuade 
his countrymen that the same arms which they foiled for their masters, might 
become, in their own hands, the instruments of freedom and victoiy. They 
sallied from the mountain ;(25) a sceptre was the reward of his advice ; and the 
annual ceremony, in which a piece oif iron was heated in the fire, and a smith's 
hammer^was successively handled by the prince and his nobles, recorded for 
ages, the humble profession and rational pride of the Turkish nation. Berte- 
zena,Uheir first leader, si^Iized their valour and his own in successful com- 
bats against the neighbouruig tribes } but when he presumed to ask in marriage 
the daughter of the great khan, the insolent demand of a slave and a mechanic 
was contemptuously rejected. The disgrace was expiated by a more noble 
alliance with the princess of China ; and the decisive battle which almost extir- 
pated the nation of the Geougen, established in Tartaiy the new and more 
powerful empire of the Turks.^ They reigned over the north ; but they con- 
fessed the vanitr of conquest, by their faitnful attachment to the mountain of 
their fathers. The royal encampment seldom lost sight of mount Altai, from 
whence the river Irtish descends to water the rich pastures of the Calmucks,(26) 
which nourish the largest sheep and oxen in the world. The soil is fruitful, 
and the climate mild and temperate ; the happy region was ignorant of earth- 
quake and pestilence ; the emperor's throne was turned toward the east, and a 
Slden wolt on the top of a spear, seemed to e^ard the entrance of his tent. 
le of the successors of fiertezena was temptea by the luxuiy and superstition 
of China ; but his design of building cities and temples was defeated by the 
simple wisdom of a Barbarian counsellor. " The Turks," he said, ** are not 
equal in number to one hundredth part of the inhabitants of China. If we ba- 
lance their power, and elude their armies, it is because we wander without any 
fixed habitations, in the exercise of war and hunting. Are we strong ? we ad- 
vance and conquer ; are we feeble ? we retire and are concealed. Should the 
Turks confine themselves within the walls of cities, the loss of a battle would 
be the destruction of their empire. The Bonzes preach only patience, humility, 
and the renunciation of the world. Such, O kin^ ! is not the religion of heroes." 
They entertained, with less reluctance, the doctrines of Zoroaster, but the great- 
est part of the nation acquiescecL without inquiry, in the opinions, or rather in 
the practice of their ancestors. The honours of sacrifice were reserved for the 

(83) From Caf to Caf; which a more raUomU geograpbf wooM iatorprat, from Imaui, perhaps, to 
mount AUai. AceonUng to the religious philosophy of the Mahometans, the basis of mount Car Is an 
emerald, wtioae reflectloD produces the asure of the sky. The mountain Is endowed with a annsitivQ 
action In Its roots or nenres ; and their ▼ibnoion, at the command of God, Is the cause of earthquakes 
(D'Herbelot,p.930,S31). 

(S4) The Siberian Iron is the best and most pl«artifu] in the worid ; and In the aonthern parta, above slxtr 
mines are now worked by the Industry of the Russians (Btrahlenbeig, Hist, of Siberia, p. 34S. 387. 
Voyaae en Siberie, par I'Abb^ Chappe d*Auteroche, p. 603— «08, edit In IStoo. Amsterdam, 1770). 
The Turks offered Iron for sale; yet the Roman ambassadors, with strange obeUnacy, persisted la 
believing Uwt it was all a trick, and that their country produced nono (Meaander In Ezeeript. LdgT p. 
1S8). 

(iS) Of Irgana-kon (Abulgbazl Khan, Hbt. Genealoglque des Tartars, P. 11. c.S, p. 71—77, c. 15, p. 155U 
The tradiUon of the Moguls, of Uie 4S0 yean which they passed hi the mountains, agrees with the 
Chinese periods of the history of the Huns and Turin (de Gulgnes, tom. 1. part IL p. 376), and the twenty 
geneiaUaas, flrom their restwation to Zin|ris. 

(96) The country of «he Turks, now of the Calmacks, is well described In the Genealogies' HieloiT, 
p SU--56a. The curious notes of the French translaior are enlarged and digested In th'> «cood volume 
9f the English venlon. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 103 

supreme deity ; they acknowledged, in rude b^rmns, their obligations to tbe air, 
4he Bref tbe water, and tbe earth ; and their priests derived some profit from the 
art of divination. Their unwritten laws were rigorous and impartial : theft 
was punidied by a tenfold restitution: adultery, treason, and murder, with 
death ; and no chastisement could be inflicted too severe for tbe rare and inex- 
piable guilt of cowardice. As the sulgect nations marched under the standard 
-of the Turks, their cavaliy, both men and horses, were proudly computed by 
millions ; one of their effective armies consisted of four hundred thousand sol- 
idiers, and in less than fifty years they were connected in peace and war with the 
Romans, tbe Persians, and the Chinese. In their northern limits, some vestige 
may be discovered of the form and situation of Karotchatka, of a people of hunt- 
<ers and fishermen whose sledees were drawn by dogs, and whose habitations 
•were buried in the earth. The Turks were ignorant of astronomy: but the 
observatidn taken by some learned Chinese, with a gnomon of eight leet, fixes 
fthe royal camp in tne latitude of forty-nine degrees, and marks Uieir extreme 
.progress, withm three, or at least ten de^es, of the jpolar circle.(27) Amoi^ 
Aheir southern conquests, the most splendid was that of the Nepthalites or white 
iluns, a polite and warlike people, who possessed the commercial cities of 
•Bocbara and Samarcand, who had vanquished the Persian monarch, and carried 
their victorious arms along the banks, and perhaps to the mouth of the Indus 
On tbe side of tbe west, the Turkish cavalry advanced to the lake Mseotis. 
They passed the lake on the ice. The khan who dwelt at the foot of mount 
Altai, issued his commands for tbe siege of Bosphoru8,(28) a city, the voluntanr 
subject of Rome, and whose princes had formerly been the friends of Atbens.(39) 
To the east, the Turks invaded China, as often as the v^our of the government 
was relaxed : and 1 am taught to read in the history of the times, that they 
mowed down their patient enemies like hemp or grass ; and that the mandarins 
applauded the wisdom of an emperor who repulsed these Barbarians with golden 
lances. This extent of savage empire compelled the Turkish monarch to 
-establish three subordinate princes of his own blood, who soon forgot their grati- 
4ude and all^iance. The con(][uerors were enervated by luxury, which is 
always fatal except to an industrious people ; the policy of China solicited the 
vanquished nations to resume their independence ; and the power of the Turks 
was limited to a period of two hundred years. The revival of their name and 
dominion in the southern countries of Asia, are the events of a later age ; and 
the dynasties, which succeeded their native realms, may sleep in oblivion; 
«ince their histoiy bears no relation to tbe decline and fall of the Roman em- 
pire.(30) 

In the rapid career of conquest, the Turks attacked and subdued the nation of 
the Ogors or Varchonites*on the banks of the river Til, which derived the 
epithet of black from its dark water or gloomy forests. C 31) The khan of the 
Ogors was slain with three hundred thousand of his subjects, and their bodies 
were scattered over the space of four days' journey : their surviving countrymen 
acknowledged the strength and mercy of the Turks ; and a small portion, 
about twenty thousand warriors, preferred exile to servitude. .They followed 
the well-known road of the Volga, cherished the error of the nations who con- 
•founded them with the AyAas,and spread tbe tenor of that false though famous 

(97) Yisdelou, ]>. 141. 151. Tbe faist, tlioQgh U Kricd^ betonp to a mbordiiiate aad mocorire tri^ 
mavjw introduced here. 
_^ ProeopliM, Perale. I. i. c 19, J. IL e. & Peynqnml (OlMnrmtkNM nu let Peaplet Barbaras, p. 90!, 



IW), deflnea the diacaaoe between Caflh and the old Boephonifl at zvi 

t90} See, in a Memoir of M. de Boze (Mem. de r A( 
'aneieot kh^ and medala of the Cimmerian Bonphorue;, 
Demottbenea againai Lepclnee (in Reiake, Orator. Onoc. torn. i. p. 468, 467). 

— - ■ • andrevol ' ---—-•- . .^.. 



BoBDhonifl at zvi long Tartar leaguea. 

icaderoie dee IneeripBona, torn. vi. p. 540—505), tb4 

mm; and the gratitude of AUieni, In the Oratioa of 

noc. torn. i. p. 468, 467). 
(30) For the origin and' revolutions of tlie first Turkish empire, the Chinese details are borrowed ftom 
-de Guigaes (HIrt. des Huns, torn. L p. iL> 367-409), and Visdekm (suppleroent A la Biblioth^que OrteAt. 
rHsrbeloi, p. 89—114). The Greek or Boman hints are gathered hi Menander (p. ]0&-ld4,) and Theo- 
pbvlact Simocatta (1. vii. e. 7, 8). 

Qtti) The river TM, or Tola, aeoording to the geography of De Guignes (torn. I. part U. p. 58, and SSB), 
-b a small, though gralelVil stream of the desert, that nils into the Orbon, Belinga, kc See BolL Journey 
Aon Petaiabur^ to Pekin (vol. il. p. 184) ; yet bis own description of Uie Keat, down which bo saiM 
Into Uie Oby, represents «be name and attributes of Uie Black rivtr (p. 130).! 



104 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

appellation, which bad not, however, saved its lawful proprietors from the yoke 
of the Turks. (32) After a long and victorious march, the new Avars arrived 
at the foot of mount Caucasus, m the country- of the Alani(33) and CircaasianSr 
where they first heard of the splendour and weakness of the Roman empire. 
They humbly requested their confederate, the prince of the Alani^ to lead 
them to this source of riches ; and their ambassador, with the permission of the 
governor of Lazica, was transported hr the Euzine sea to Constantinople. The 
whole city was poifred forth to behola with curiosity and teiror the aspect of 
' a strange people ; their long hair, which hune in tresses down their backs, was 
gracefully bound with ribbons, but the rest of their habit appeared to imitate 
the fashion of the Huns. When they were admitted to the audience of Justi- 
nian, Candish, the first of the ambassadors, addressed the Roman emperor in 
these terms : *' You see before you, O mighty prince, the representatives of the- 
strongest and most populous of nations, the invincible, the irresistible Avars. 
We are willing to devote ourselves to your service : we are able to vanquish 
and destroy aU the enemies who now disturb your repose. But we expect, as 
the price of our alliance, as the reward of our valour, precious gifts, annual 
subsidies, and fruitful possessions." At the time of this embassy, Justinian, 
had reigned above thirty, he bad lived about seventy-five years : bis mind, as- 
well as his bodj) was feeble and languid ; and the conqueror of Afiica and 
Italy, careless of the permanent interest of his people, aspired only to end his< 
days in the bosom even of inglorious peace. In a studied oration, ne imparted 
lo the senate his resolution to dissemble the insult, and to purchase the friendship 
of the Avars ; and the whole senate, like the mandarins of Ciiioa, applauded' 
the incomparable wisdom and foresight of their soverekn. The tnstniments of 
uxury were iinmediately prepared to captivate the Barbarians : silken jrar- 
nnents, soft and splendid beds, and chains and collars incrasted witn gold. The 
iimbassadors, content with such liberal reception, departed from Constantinople^ 
iind Valentin, one of the emperor's guards, was sent with a similar character 
lo their camp at the foot of mount Caucasus. As their destruction or their 
!iuccess must oe alike advantageous to the empire, he persuaded them to invade 
the enemies of Rome ; and they were easily tempted, by rifts and promises, 
to gratify their ruline inclinations. These fugitives, who fleid before the Turkisb 
arms, passed the Tanais and Boiysthenes, and boldly advanced into the heart 
of Poland and Germany, violating the law of nations, and abusing the rights of 
victory. Before ten years had elapsed, their camps were seated on the Danube 
and the Elbe, many Bulgarian and Sclavonian names were obliterated from tfae- 
earth, and the remainder of their tribes are found, as tributaries and vassals,. 
under the standard of the Avars. The chagan, the peculiar title of their king,. 
still affected to cultivate the friendship of the emjperor : and Justinian enter- 
tained some thoughts of fixing them in Pannonia to balance the prevailing 
power of the Lombards. But the virtue or treacheiy of an Avar betrayed the 
secret enmity and ambitious designs of bis countrymen ; and they loudly com-- 

Slained of the timid, though jealous policy, of detaining then* amba88adon,and 
enying the arms which they had been allowed to purchase in the capital ot 
the empire.(34) 

[A. D. 569 — ^582.] Perhaps the apparent change in the dispositions of tl^ 
emperors, may be ascribed to the embassy which was received from the con- 
querors of the Avan.(36) The immense distance which eluded their aims,. 

(SB) Theopbvlact, I.tU. c7, & And yet htafriM Avara BreiBvWUeevantotbecjwof M. deGulgtnei; 
and what can be more fllintrloua than Uie/a<«« t The right of tlio faglUva 0|on to ihat oatkMial appal- 
lation ifl oonfened by the Turin themaehraa (Menander, p. 1S6). 

(33) The Alani are itiU found in the Genealogfcal Htatory of Che Tartan (p. 617), and in d'Aavllle'*. 
maps. They oppoeed tlie march of the general! of Zingia round tiie Caeplan aea, and ware ovcitJinHro, 
In a great banle (Riat. de GengfMan, 1. fv. c 9, p. 447). 

(31) The embairtes and first conquests of the Avars nay be read tn Henaader (Excerpt. Logat. p. 89». 
im, 101. )54, 155), Theophanes (p. 196), Uie HMorla Miacella. (1. zri. p. 100), and Gregory of Toun (L 
iv. c. S3. S9, in the Historians of France, torn. ii. p. 314. SIT). 

(35) Theophanes (Chron. p. 904), and the Hist. MIscella. (I. zrl. p. 110), as undencood by De Gufgnes 
(torn. i. part li. p. 534), appear to speak of a Torkisb emhaasy to Justinian Mnnelf : taut that of Maniacli,. 
tn the ftMirita year of his successor Justin, b posiUvely the first Oiat reached Constantinople ^Manaidar,. 
p. 1081. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 105 

could not extinguish their resentment : the Turkish ambasaadors pursued the 
footsteps of the vanquished to the Jaik, the Vol^a, mount Caucasus, the 
Euxine, and Constant mople, and at length appeared before the successor of 
Constantine, to request that he would not espouse the cause of rebels and 
fugitives. Even commerce had some share in this remarkable negotiation : and 
the Sogdoites, who were now the tributaries of the Turks, embraced the fair 
occasion of openiru;, by the north of the Caspian, a new road for the importa- 
tion of Chinese silk into the Roman empire. The Persian, who preferred the 
navigation of Cejion, had stopped the caravans of fiochara and Samarcand : 
their silk was contemptuously burnt: some Turicish ambassadors died m 
Persia, with a suspicion of poison ; and the great khan permitted his faithful 
vassal Maniach, the prince of the Sogdoites, to propose^at the Byzantine court, 
a treaty of alliance against their common enemies, xbeir splendid apparel 
and rich presents, the fruit of Oriental luxury, distinguished Maniach and his 
colleagues, from the rude savages of the north : their letters, in the Scythian 
character and laneuage, announced a people who had attained the rudiments 
of science :(36) they enumerated the conquests, they offered the friendship 
and military aid, of the Turks ; and their sincerity was attested by direfut 
imprecatbns (if the^ were guilty of falsehood) against their own bead, and the 
head of Disabul their master. The Greek pnnce entertained with hospitable 
legsad the amba^adors of a remote and powerful monarch : the sight of silk- 
worms and looms disappointed the hopes of the Sogdoites; (he emperor 
renounced^ or seemed to renounce, the fugitive Avars, but he accepted the 
alliance of the Turics ; and the ratification of the treaty was carried by a Roman 
minister to the foot of mount Altai. Under the successors of Justinian, the 
friendship of the two nations was cultivated by frequent and cordial intercoune ; 
the most favoured vassals were permitted to imitate the example of the ^reat 
khan, and one hundred and six Turks, who, on various occasions, had visited 
Constantinople, departed at the same time for their native country. The 
duration ana length of the journey from the Byzantine court to mount Altai, 
are not specifiea ; it might have been difficult to mailc a road throt^h the 
nameless deserts, the mountains, rivers, and morasses of Taitaiy ; but a curiou» 
account has been preserved of the reception of the Roman ambassadors at the 
royal camp. After they had been purified with fire and incense, according ta 
a rite still practised under the sons of Zineis,tthey were introduced to the 
presence of Disabul. In a valley of the Golden Mountain, they found the 
great khan in his tent, seated in a chair with wheels, to which a horse might be 
occasionalty harnessed. As soon as they had delivered their presents, which 
were received by the proper officers, tbey exposed, in a florid oration, the 
wishes of the Roman emperor, that victoiy might attend the arms of the Turks^ 
that their rei^n might be long and prosperous, and that a strict alliance, without 
envy or deceit, might for ever be maintained between the two most powerful 
nations of the earth. The answer of Disabul corresponded with these friendly 
professions, and the ambassadors were seated by his side, at a banquet which 
lasted the greatest part of the day : the tent was surrounded with silk hangings,, 
and a Tartar liquor was served on the table, which possessed at least the intoxi- 
cating qualities of wine. The entertainment of the succeeding day was more 
sumptuous ; the silk hangings of the second tent were embroidered in various 
figures ; and the royal seat, the cup% and the vases, were of gold. A third 
pavilion was supported by columns of gilt wood ; a bed of pure and massy 
gold was raised upon four peacocks of the same metal ; and before the entrance 
of their tent, dishes, basins, and statues of solid silver, and admirable art, were 
ostentatiously piled in wagons, the monuments of valour rather than of industry. 
When Disabul led his armies against the frontien of Persia, his Roman allies. 



(38) TlM BiMrfans b«Te foand chvaetara, rude hieroglrohkfl, on the IrtMi and TenM, on m«dalf . 
lambs, tdola, rocki, obeUaks, ice (BlrahleidMff , HiM. of Siberia, p, 394. 346. 406. 499). Dr. Hyde (de 
B^gwne VflCemm Pannnim. p. 991, Ac.) haa given two alphabets of Thibet and of the Eygoan. I 
bsT* long harboaied a Miapicloo that all the Scythian, and ••■w, perhapa much, of the Indian iclencft 
waa derived Arom the Gceebof Bact ri ann.* 



toe TU£ DECLINE AND FALL 

followed many days the inarch of the Turkish camp, nor were they dismiased 
till they had enjoyed their precedency over the envoy of the great kine, whose 
loud and intemperate clamours interrupted the silence of the royal Banquet. 
The power and ambition of Chosroes cemented the union of the Turks and 
Romans* who touched his dominions on either side : but those distant nations, 
regardless of each other, consulted the dictates of interest without recollecting 
the obligations of oaths and treaties. While the successor of Disabul cele- 
brated hjs father's obsequies, he was saluted by the ambassadors of the emperor 
Til>erius, who proposed an invasion of Persia, and sustained with firmness, the 
angiy, and perhaps the just, reproaches of that haughty Barbarian. ** You see 
my ten fingers,'* said the great khan, and he applied them to his mouth. ** You 
Romans speak with as many tongues, but they are tongues of deceit and per- 
guiy. To me you hold one language, to my subjects another ; and the nations 
are successively deluded by your pei^dious eloquence. You precipitate your 
allies into war and danger, you enjoy their labours, and you neglect your (bene- 
factors. Hasten your return, inform yqur master that a Turk is incapable of 
^uttering or foiigiving falsehood, and that he shall speedily meet the punishment 
which be deserves. While he solicits my friendship with flatterire^ and hollow 
words, he is sunk to a confederate of my fugitive Varchonites. If I condescend 
to march against those contemptible slaves, they will tremble at the sound of 
our whips : they will be trampled like a nest of ants, under the feet of my 
innumerable cavalry. I am not ignorant of the road which they have followed 
to invade your empire ; nor can I be deceived by the vain pretence, that 
mount Caucasuii is tne impregnable barrier of the Romans. I know the course 
of the Niester, the Danube, and the Hebrus ; the most warlike nations have 
yielded to the arms of the Turks: and from the rising to the setting sun, 
4he earth is my inheritance." Notwithstanding this menace, a sense of 
mutual advantage soon renewed thfe alliance of the Turks and Romans ; but 
the pride of the great khan survived his resentment : and when he announced 
an important conquest to his friend, the emperor Maurice, he styled him- 
self the master of the seven races, and the lord of the seven climates of the 
world. (37). 

[A. D. 600 — 630.1 Disputes have often arisen between the sovereigns of 
Asia, for the title ofkii^ of the world ; while the contest has proved that it 
-could not bek>ng to either of the competitors. The kin^^dom of the Turks was 
bounded b^ the Oxus or Gihon ; and Touran was separated by that great river 
from the rival monarchy of Iran^ or Persia, which, in a smaller compass, con- 
tained perhaps a larger measure of power and population. The Persians, who 
alternately invaded and repulsed the Turks and the Romans, were still ruled 
by the house of Sassan, which ascended the throne three hundred years before 
the accession of Justinian. His contemporary, Cabades, or Kobad, had been 
•successful in war against the emperor Anastasius : but the reign of that prince 
was distracted by civil and religious troubles. A prisoner in the hands of his 
-subjects J an exile amoii^ the enemies of Persia; he recovered his liberty by 
prostituting the honour ofhis wife, and regained his kingdom with the dangerous 
and mercenary aid of the Barbarians, who had slain his father. His nobles 
were suspicious that Kobad never foi^gave the authors of his expulsion, or even 
(hose of his restoration. The people were deluded and inflamed by the fana- 
ticism of Mazdak,C38) who asserted the community of women,(39) and the 
equality of mankind, while he appropriated the richest lands and most beau- 
tiful females to the use of his secretanes. The view of these disorders, which 
liad been fomented by his laws and examples,(40) imbittered the declining 

(tr?) All tlw dtttaili of these Tnrklsb and Rooiftn emboniei, m corioue in the h\Btory of human mil- 
iiera, axe drawn fhm the extractaof Menander (p. lOfr—UO. 151—194. 161— IM), in which we oAen 
trcgrct Uie want of order and connexion. 

(:«) Seed*Herbelot (BiblioL Orient p. M8.fl89) ; Hyde (de Rellglone Vet Pemmin, c 31, p »0 991); 
•Tocock (Specimen Ui^'L Arab. p. 70, 71) ; Eutycfaiiu CAnnal. torn. ii. p. 176} ; Teieiia (in StevwM BML 
tff Persia, 1. 1, c 34)* 

(39) The nime of Uie new law for the community of women, was toon propasated In Syria ( Aaaemau 
Sibllnt. Orient, torn. ill. p 408), and Greece (Procop. Peraic. !. i. c. S|. 

(40) He offered hii owa wtiu and sister to the prophet , but the praycn of Noddmui Btvad bia motlNra 



OF THE ROMAN GM He. lOT 

MM of the Fenian roooarch ; and his fean were increased by the consdoumeii 
oF his destt^n to reverse the natural and customaiy order of succession, in favour 
of his third and most favoured son, so famous under the names of Chosroes and 
Nushirvan* To render the youth more illustrious in the ejes of the nations, 
Kobad was desirous that he should be adopted by the emperor Justin:* the 
hope of peace inclined the Byzantine court to accept this singular proposal , 
and Chosroes mkbt have acquired a specious claim to the inheritance of hb 
Roman parent. But the future mischief was diverted by the advice of the 
gusstor rrcx:lus : a difficulty was^startedy whether the adoption should be per- 
iormed as a civil or militaiy rite';(41) the treaty was abruptly dissolved; and 
Ihe sense of this indi^ity sunk deep into the mind of Chosroes, who bad already 
advanced to the Tipis on his road to Constantinople. His father did not loi^ 
survive the disappointment of his wishes : the testament of their deceased sove* 
reign was read in the assembly of the nobles ; and a powerful faction, prepared 
for the event, and regardless of the priority of age, exalted Chosroes to the 
throne of Persia. He filled that throne during a prosperous period of forty- 
e^ht years ;^42) and the Justice of Nushirvan is celebrated as the theme of 
immortal praise by the nations of the East. 

[A. D. 631*^79.] But the justice of kings is understood by themselves, and 
even by their subiects, with an ample indulgence for the gratification of passion 
and interest. The virtue of Chosroes was that of a conqueror who» in the 
measures of peace and war, is excited by ambition and restrained by prudence; 
who confounds the greatness with the happiness of a nation, and calndy devotes 
the lives of thousands to the fame, or even the amusement, of a single man. In 
his domestic administration, the just Nushirvan would merit, in our feeling 
the appellation of a tyrant. His two elder brothers had been deprived of their 
fair expectations of the diadem : their future life, between the supreme rank 
and the condition of subjects, was anxious to themselves and formidable to their 
master ; fear as well as revenee might tempt them to rebel ; the slightest evi- 
dence of a conspiracy satisfied the author of their wrongs ; and the repose of 
Chosroes was secured by the death of these unhappy princes, with tbeii 
families and adherents. One guiltless youth was savea ana dbmissed by the 
compassion of a veteran general ; and tnisact of humanity, which was revealed 
by his son, overbalanced the merit of reducing twelve nations to the obedience 
ot Persia. The zeal and prudence of Melxxies had fixed the diadem on the 
head of Chosroes himself: but be delayed to attend the royal summons, till 
he had performed the duties of a militaiy review ; he was instantly com- 
manded to repair to the iron tripod, which stood before the gate of the 
palace,(43) whera, it was death to relieve or approach the victim ; and Mebodes 
languished several days before bis sentence was pronounced, by the inflexible 
pride and calm ingratitude of the son of Kobad. But the people, more espe- 
cially in the East, are disposed to foigive, and even to applaud, the cruelty 
which strikes at the loftiest heads; at the slaves of ambition, whose voluntary 
•cboice has exposed them to live in the smiles, and to perish by the frown, of a 
capricious monarch. In the execution of the laws which he had no temptation 
'to violate ; in the punishment of crimes which attacked his own diniity, as well 
as the happiness of individuab ; Nushirvan, or Chosroes, deservea the appella- 

and Uw indlvMiH moMreh never forgave tiie hammaaoa to wbkh hli ffital piety had etooped: pedet 

Ukm dMMculatne (Mid be to U asdak), eiOw f"^^ adlrae narei oeeopat. CPooock, Specimen UiiU Arak 

p. 71). 

(41)ProGoplui,Peraie.l.t.e.ll. Waa not Proelm over wiee 1 Wat not the danger imaginary S^'Die 

at leaat. waa injnrlooa to a nation not iSnoraatof lettera; « ypmiymM ot fitfOapoi lys watcof 

icXX*0oX«#y4ntnm. Whether any mode M adopUo •• - 



wmwrat cXX* oaXw mtnif Whether any mode ^ adopUon waa practbed in Persia. I nueh doubL 

(43) Prom Proeoplae and Agathlaa, Pa^ (torn. li. p. SO. SM,) haa proved that Cboaroea Nuahirvan 
aieended Um throne in Uw Sfth year of Jnsilniaa (A. D. 531, April 1— A. D. 533, AprU 11. But Uie true 
ehronokigv, which barmonizea wlUi Uie Orerka and Orlentala, ia aieertalned by John Malala (torn ii. 
Sll). Cabades or Kobad, aTcer a reign of forty-three jmn and two monUn, aiekened tiie Sth. and died 
tiie 13th, of September, A. D. 531, aged eighty-two years. According to the annala of Eutycbius, 
Nnshtrvan rei«ned forty-seven years and six months ; aad hie death must conaequenUy be placed ia 
March, A. P. 579. 

(43) Proeopliia, Perrie. 1. L e. 93. Brisson de Regn. Pen. p. 404. The gate of Uie palace of 
Ispaban is, or wse, Uie Ibtal scene of diigraoe or deaUi. (Ohaidln, Voyage en Perse, torn. iv. p. 31S, 313.1 



106 THE DECLINE AND PALL 

tion of^tii^. His government was firm, rigorous, and impartial. It was the fint 
labour of his reig^ to abolish the dangerous theoiy of common or equal posses- 
sions ; the lands and women which tte sectaries of Mazdak had usuiped, were 
lestoied to their lawful owners ; and the temperate^chastisement of tne fanatics 
or impostors confirmed the domestic rights of society. Instead of listening 
witii blind confidence to a favourite minister, he established four viziers over 
tfie four great provinces of his empire, Assyria, Media, Persia, and Bactriana. 
In the choice of judges, prefects, and counsellors, he strove to remove the mask 
which is always worn in the presence of kings : he wished to substitute the 
natural order of talents for the accidental distinctions of birth and fortune ; he 
professed, in sj^cious language, his intention to prefer those men who carried 
the poor in their bosoms, and to banish corruotion from the seat of justice, as 
dogs were excluded from the temple of the Magi. The code of laws of the 
first Artazerxes was revived and published as the rule of the magistrates : but 
the assurance of speedy punishment was the best security oi their virtue. 
Their behaviour was inspected by a thousand eyes, their words were over- 
neard by a thousand ears, the secret or public agents of the throne ; and the 
provinces from the Indian to the Arabian confines, were edigfatened by the fre- 
quent visits of a sovereign, who affected to emulate his celestial brother in his 
rapid and salutary career. Education and agriculture he viewed as the two 
objects most deserving of his care. In every city of Persia, orphans, and the 
children of the poor, were maintained and mstructed at the public expense ; 
the dai^hteis were eiven in marria^ to the richest citizens of their own rank : 
and the sons, according to their different talents, were employed in mechanic 
tndes, or promoted to more honourable service. The deserted villajg^es were 
relieved b^ his bounty; to the peasants and farmers who were found incapable 
of cultivating their lands, he distributed cattle, seed, and the instruments of 
husbandly ; and the rare and inestimable treasure of fresh water was parsimo- 
niously mans^d, and skilfully dispersed over the arid territoiy of Persia. (44) 
The prosperity of that kingdom was the effect and the evidence of his virtues r 
his vices are those of Oriental despotism : but in the long comMtition between 
Chosroes and Justinian, the advantage Doth of merit and fortune is almost 
always to be ascribed to the Barbarian.(45) 

To the praise of justice, Nushirvan united the repotatkm of knowledge ; and 
iht seven Greek philosophers, who visited his court, were invited and cteceived 
by the stran|;e assurance, that a disciple of Plato was seated on the Persian 
throne. Did they expect that a prince, strenuously exercised in the toils of 
war and government, should Mutate, with dexterity fike their own, the abstruse 
and profound questions which amused the leisure of the schools of Athens ? 
Could they hope that the precepts of philosophy should direct the life, and 
control the passions, of a despot, whose infancy nad been tau^t to consider 
Aw absolute and fluctuating wiU as the only rule of moral obligation ?(46) The 
studies of Chosroes were ostentatious and superficial : but his example awakened 
the curiosity of an ingenious people, and tne light of science was diffused over 
the dominions of Per6ia.(47} At (iondi Sapor, in the neighbourhood of the 
royal city of Susa« an academy of physic was founded, which insensibly 
became a liberal sciiod of poetiy, philosophy, and ihetoric.(48) The annals 



(4C)lBF0ni»,dienriiMeortlMwtt0ntouafleeror«aie. T^—teff wdkodiwlmrfiaeo— 
duuiMli to uracil dimlDiilMd, wid wMiIiiIm totltt^oT itaeioU; 40S wHlt bvnbmnnemay km umr 
Tauria, and 49,000 wera onoe reckoned in die provlDce of Khomen (Clwidiii, lom. UL pw 90^ iOO. T»> 
vei iilei^loiii* L p> 4SB). 

(45) The eharMter and g u fo m m eii tof Nmliinfan la i upi aaijiniid aume tta ueatotbe wwda of d^HcttMloe 



9U>lloL Ocient. p. SSO, 4ce. ftom KlMDdeaiir), Euncfaliia (ArniaL torn. il. p. 179, 180— vwr rich), Ab«l- 
Bharagioi (Dynaat. ▼!!. p. 94, 9ft-Tenr poor), Tarikh BehUianl (p. 144— ISO), Toeint (In Stevens 1* >• «• 
»), Aaieman. (BiMioi. Orient. tom.lU. p. 404-410), and Uie Abb4 Fonmont (HIal. da PAcad. d<» 
Inaeriptlona, torn. tU. p. 99S--SS4), who baa tmaalated a apuiloua or flennlne taattment of Nnabinran. 

(40) A tbousaod yean before hla birth, ttM judfen of Perria had flTon a aolcian opinion— rv ^owXawyrt 
Utpasw (|ciMu iTMcciv 7* ov PwXitmi (Herodot. I. ilL e. 31, p. 910, edit Weaieliiiii). Nor had Uiia cob- 
■dmUonal maxini been negleeicd aa a uaeleai and barren Uieory. 

(47) On Um literary stale of Perala, the Greek veiiioni, phlloaophera, nophiata, Uie learning «r ifw>- 
tanee of Choaoea, Acathiua (I. II. c 00—71), dlaplaya mneh infonnattoa and atrong pr^lodloaa. 

««) jjaaamaii. BibfioC Orient. ImlW. n. scczlf. vI. tU. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 109 

of the inoRarch7(49) were composed ; and while recent and authentic hktoiy 
might aflbrd some useful lessons both to the prince and people, the darkness oif 
the first ages was embellished bj the giants, the dragons, and the fabulous 
heroes of Oriental romance.(50) Eveiy leamed or confident stianger was 
enriched hj the bounty, and flattered by the conversation of the monarch : he 
nobljr rewarded a Greek physician,(61 j by the deliverance of three thousand 
captives ; and the sophists who contended for his favour, were exaq[>erated by, 
the wealth and insolence of Uranius, their more successfiil rival. Nushirvan 
believed, or at least respected, the religion of the Magi ; and some traces of 
persecution may be discovered in his re^.(52) xet he allowed himself 
freely to compare the tenets of the various sects ; and the theological disputes 
in which he frequently presided, diminbhed the authority of the priest, and 
enlightened the minds ot the people* At nis command, the most celebrated 
writers of Greece and In(^a were translated into the Persian language; a 
smoodi and elegant idiom, recommended by Mahomet to the use of paradise : 
though it is branded with the epithets of savace and unmusical b^ the ignorance 
and presumption of Aeathias.(53) Yet the Greek historian might reasonably, 
wonaer, that it riiould oe found possible to execute an entire version of Plato 
and Aristotle in a foreign dialect, which had not been framed to express the 
spirit of freedom and the subtleties of philosophic disauisition. And, if the 
reason of the Stag^te might be equally dark, or equally intelligible in every 
tongue, the dramatic art andverbal ai^umentation of the disciple orSocrates,(54) 
appears to be indissolubly mingled with the grace and perfection of his Attic 
s^ie. In the search of universal knowledge, Nushirvan was informed, that the 
moral and political fables of Pilpay, an ancient Brachman, were preserved with 
a jealous reverence among the treasures of the king of India. The physician 
Ferozes was secretly despatched to the banks of the Ganges, with instructions 
to procure, at any price, the con^munication of this valuable work. His dex- 
terity obtained a transcript, his learned diligence accomplished a translation ; 
and the fables of Pilpay(55^ were read and admired in the assembly ot 
Nushirvan and hLs nobles. Tne Indian original, and the Persian copy, nave 
long since disappeared ; but this venerable monument has been saved by the 
cunosily of the Arabian caliphs, revived in the modem Persic, the Tunish, 
the Synac, the Hebrew, and the Greek idioms, and transfused through succes- 
nve versions into the modem languages of Europe. In their present form, the 
peculiar character, the manners, and religion ot the Hindoos, are completely 
obliterated ; and the intrinsic merit of the fables of Pilpay is far inferiw to 
the concise el^ance of Phsedrus, and the native jg^races of La Fontaine. Fif* 
teeo moral and political sentences are illustrated in a series of apologues ; but 

(40) TlM SiMli NiuBeb, or book of KlDfi, !■ perbapi die origliMl rseord of btatoiy wMeli was tnntaied 
into Greek lijr UMtBierpraiar Seniue (Agftthlu, !. ▼. p. Ml)| presarved aner Uie Mehooetan eonqueit, 
and ▼eralfied in die year 9M, by tke national poet FeraonHl. See d'Anqnefil (Mem. de P Academie, torn. 
aoxL p. 379), and Sir WUIlam Jonea (Hb<t of Nader Sliah, p. ISl). 

(00) In ibe AAh eenloiy, Uie name of Restom, or Rostam, a hero who eqiialled the atrength of twelve 
elepbanta, waa fknUliar to the ArmenlanB (Moeea of Chorenensla. Hiat. Armen. 1. 11. c 7, p. 96, edit 
'**' ""^n). In the beginning of the aevenlli. a Perrian Remaoee of Eoatam and laftodier waa applauded 



at Meeca, (8ale*a Koran, c zxzL p. 335). Tet thia expoaltion of taidlcnua nova hlMorto, in not given by 
Maraod (Kdhtat. Aleoran. p. 544-4481). 

(^^Lf '^'SSP* ^^^<^' ^ ^^' ^' ^ Kobad bad a ftvenrite Greek phvaleian, Stephen of Edewa (Pereic. 1. 
U. e. 9S). The practice waa ancient ; and Heiodolua lelatea the ad veoUnes of Pemocedea of Crotona Q. 
iil. c IftS— 137). 

(53) See PaA, torn. fi. p. 986. In one of the treatiei an bonoarable article waa Inaerted for the tol^ra* 
tion and hartal of die Catholiea (Menander in Excerpt. Iiegat p. 143). Moihiaad, a eon of Nuahirvan, 
waa a Chriadan. a rebel, and— a nartyr ! (IVHerbelot, p^ 681). 

(53) On the Iwaiaa language, and ite three dialeeta, eonmilt d*Anqaetl! (p. 339—3^, and Jones (p. 
153—185) : aypia rm y>wr79 icat aiumratm^ ia the character which AgmUiias 0- U- P« 06|) aacribee to an 
Idiom renowned In the Eaatlor poetical iiolVngBB 

(54) AgatMaa specillea the Gorglaa, Phedon, Parmenidea, and Tlmmw. BenandoC (FabridQa, BibHot. 
Gnec torn. ziL p. SMS— 961,) does not mendon thia barbaric vendon of Arialotle. 

(55) Of theee fldriee I have seen three copies in three different languacea! 1. In Ofvelfe, translaaBd by 
IbneoD Sedi (A. D. 1100) fttm the Arabic, and pabllshed by Starch at BerHn in 1607, hi f 



SbneoD Setfa (A. D. 1100) fttm the Arabic, and pabllshed by Starch at BerHn in 1607, hi Ifimo. 9. In 
L,9timy a vetaton froai the Greek, Bapientia Indonim, Inserted by Per^ Poussln at the end of hla edition 
of Pachymer (p. 547'-6a0, edit. Roman). 3. In Frtmch^ ftom the Turkish, dedicated, in 1510, to Saltan 
Bolinuin. Contea et Fablea Indlennea de Bidpat et de Lokman, par M. M. Galland et Cardonne, Paria, 
17^9,3 vola. la ISoM. Mr. Wharton (HIalory of BoglWi Poetry, vol. I. p. 139-131), takea a larger sco^* 



no THE DECLINE AND FALL 

tbe compoeition is intricate, the namtive prolix, and the precept obvious and 
barren. Yet the Bracbman may assume the merit of inventing a pleasing; fiction 
which adorns the nakedness of truth, and alleviates, perhaps, to a royal ear, 
the harshness of instruction. With a similar design, to admonish kings tba^ 
they are strone only in tbe strength of their subjects, the same Indians invented 
the eame of chess, which was likewise introduced into Persia under the reign 
c^ l7ushirvan.(56) 

J A. D. 633 — ^639.] The son of Kobad found his kii^dom involved in a war 
with the successor of Constantine; and the anxiety of his domestic situation 
inclined him to grant the suspension of arms, which Justinian was impatient 
to purchase. Cho9Y)es saw the Roman ambassadors at bis feet. He accepied 
eleven thousand pounds of gold, as the price of an endlcMS or indefinite peace ;t&7) 
Home mutual exchanges were regulated ; the Persian assumed the guard ot tbe 
gates of Caucasus, and tbe demolition of Dara was suspended, on condition 
that it should never be made the residence of the general of tbe EasU This 
interval of repose had been solicited, and was diligently improved by the am- 
bition of the emperor: bis African conquests were the first fruits of the Per- 
sian treat3r; and the avarice of Chosroes was soothed by a large portion of tbe 
spoils of Uarthage, which his ambassadors required in a tone of pleasantry, 
md under the colour of friendship. (68) But the trophies of Belisarius dis- 
turbed the slumbers of the great king ; and he heard with astonishment, envy, 
and fear, that Sicily, Italy, and Rome itself, had been reduced in three rapid 
campaigns, to the obedience of Justinian. Unpractised in the art of violating^ 
treaties, he secretly excited his bold and subtle vassal Almondar. That prince 
of the Saracens, who resided at Hira,(59) had not been included in the eeneraL 
peace, and still waged an obscure war against his rival Arethas, the chief of the 
tribe of Gassan, and confederate of the empire. The subject of their dispute 
was an extensive sbeepwalk in tbe desert to the south of Palmyra. An imme- 
morial tribute for the Acense of pasture, appeared to attest the rights of Almon- 
dar, while the Gassanite appealed to the JLatin name of Strata* a paved road, 
at an unquestionable evidence of the sovereie[ntv and labours of the Romans. (60) 
The two monarchs supported the cause of tneir respective vassals ; and the 
Persian Arab, without expecting the event of a slow and doubtful arbitration, 
enriched his flying camp with tbe spoil and captives of Syria. Instead oi 
repelling the arms, Justinian attempted to seduce the fidelity, of Almondar^ 
while he called from the extremities of the earth, the nations of Ethiopia and 
Scythia to invade the dominions of his rival. But tbe aid of such allies was 
distant and precarious, and the discovery of this hostile correspondence iustified 
the complaints of the Goths and Armenians, who implored, almost at tne same 
time, the protection of Chosroes. The descendants of Arsaces, who were still 
numerous in Armenia, had been provoked to assert the last relics of national 
freedom and hereditary rank ; and the ambassadors of Vitiges bad secretly 
traversed the empire to expose the instant, and almost inevitable, danger of the 
kinedom of Italy. Their representations were uniform, weighty, and effectual. 
'* We stand before your throne, the advocates of your interest as well as of our 
own. The ambitk)us and faithless Justinian aspires to be the sole master of 
the world. Since tbe endless peace, which betrayed the common freedom of 
mankind, that prince, your ally in words, your enemy in actions, has alike 

(86) See Uie BMoite ShabUndU of Dr. Hyde (Syntacm. DtawitaL torn, U. i^ 61-rS9). 

(ST) The endleei peace (Praoopiiu, Fenic L L c. SI,) waaeoneludBdor ralilled In tbe aisUi year, and 
Uilrd conaulsliip of jTustinian (A. D. 533, between Januaiy 1, and April 1. Fagl, ton. ii. p. 550.) Mar- 
oeOlnua, In hie Chronicle, uaee the atyle of Medea and PenAana. 

(98) ProeopiiH, Panic. L I. c. 98. 

(99) Almondar, King of RIra, waa depoeed by Kobad, and reeiored by Nuahirran. Hia roolb 
h& beauty, waa aornansed OlutUL Wntm'^ an appellation which became heiedltanr, and was c 



iw beauty, waa aornamed OU*tM Watvr^ an appeUation which became heiedltanr, and was eztended* 
for a mora noble caoae (liberality la famine) to the Arab princes of Syria (Pocock, S^iedmen HiaL Arab, 
p. 69, 70). 



(^ Proeopina, Persfc I. iL e. 1. We are ignonml 
road often days* Joamey ftom AoraniUa to Babylonli 
Weiadinc and d'Anville are ilient. 



ant of tbe origin and oMect of tbia wtrtaa^ a paveft 
WMMdi -^ -••* --"■' — -"— iytottlaz-rSea a Ladn ooia in IMOrie^a Map. bap Orient ) 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. lir 

malted his friends and foes, and has filled the earth with blood and confu^ 
sion. Has he not violated the pmilegres of Armenia, the independence of Col ' 
chos, and the wild liberty of the Tzanian mountains ? Has be not usurped, 
with equal avidity, the city of Bosphonis on the frozen Mceotus, and the vale 
of palm-trees on the shores of the Red sea ? The Moors, the Vandals, the 
Goths, have been successively oppressed, and each nation has calmly remsined 
the spectator of their neignbour's ruin. Embrace, O king! the favourable 
moment ; the East is left without defence, while the armies of Justinian and 
his renowned general are detained in the distant regions of the West. If your 
hesitate and delay, Belisarius and his victorious troops will soon return from' 
the Tiber to the Tigris, and Persia may enjoy the wretched consolation of 
being the last devoured."(61) By such aiguraents, Chosroes was easily per- 
suaded to imitate the example which he condemned : but the Persian, ambi- 
tious of military fame, disdained the inactive warfare of a rival, who issued 
hb sar^inary commands from the secure station of the Byzantine palace. 

[A. D. 540.] Whatever mieht be the provocations of Chosroes, be abused 
the confidence of treaties ; and the just reproaches of dissimulation and false* 
hood could only be concealed by the lustre of his victories. (62) The Persian 
army, which had been assembled in the olains of Babylon, prudently declined 
the strong cities of Mesopotamia, and followed the western bank of the Eu- 
phrates, till the small though populous town of Dura* presumed to arrest the 
progress of the great king. The gates of Dura, by treacheiy and surprise, 
were burst open: and as soon as Chosroes had stained bis scimitar with the 
blood of the inhaoitantSy he dismissed the ambassador of Justinian to inform his 
master in what place he had lef^ the enemy of the Romans. The conqueror 
still aflfected the praise of humanity and justice ; and as he beheld a noble ma- 
tron with her infant rudely dragged along the ground, he sighed, he wept, and 
implored the divine justice to punish the author of these calamities. Yet the 
herd of twelve thousand captives was ransomed for two hundred pounds of gold : 
the neighbouring bishop of Seriopolis pledged his faith for the payment ; and 
in the subsequent year the unfeeling avarice of Chosroes exacted the penalty of 
an obligation which it was generous to contract and impossible to aischaige. 
He advanced into the heart of Syria ; but a feeble enemy, who vanished at his 
approach, disappointed him of the honour of victory ; and as he could not hope 
to establish his dominion, the Persian king displayed in thiA inroad the mean 
and rapacious vices of a robber. Hierapolis, Berrns or Aleppo, Aparoea, aa 
Chalcis, were successive!]^ besieged : they redeemed their safety by a ransom 
of |;old or silyer, proportioned to their respective strength and opulence ; and 
their new master enforced, without observing, the terms of capitulation. Edu- 
cated in the religion of the Magi, be exercised, without remorse, the lucrative 
trade of sacrilege : and, aQer stripping of its gold and gems, a piece of the true 
cross, he generously restored the naked relic to the devotion of the Christians of 
Apamea. No more than fourteen years had elapsed since Antioch was ruined 
bjr an earthquake ;t but the queen of the east, the new Theopolis, had been 
raised from the ground by the liberality of Justinian ; and the increasing g^at- 
ness of the building^ and the people already erased the memory of this recent 
disaster. On one side, the city was defended by the mountain, on the other by 
the river Orontes ; but the most accessible part was commanded by a superior 
eminence : the proper remedies were rejected, from the despicable fear of dis- 
covering its weakness to the enemy ; and Germanus, the emperor^s nephew^ 
refused to trust his person and dignity within the walls of a besieged city. The 

(61) I have Mended, ta « tbort epeech, Uie two oraUoni of the Araacidee of Anaenla and the Oothle 
am b— a do ti. Proeoplae, in Ma public Uilory, feelB, and makee u (M, dkat Jntfinlan was die tme anlhor 
of dM war (Peraic I. ii. c. SL 8), 



(68) The Invasion of Syria, Uie rain of Anttoeh, Jkc are rdated in a fM fod retular eeries by Proeo- 
moM (Peraic. I. Ii. c. &~M). Small collateral aid can be drawn from the Orientale: yet not they, bat 
d'Berheloc hlnaelf (p. S80), eboald blush, when he Uamee them for makhif Juatinian and Nuehlrvaa 
eouamnorariee. On the geography of the eeat of war, D* Anville Q'Euphrete et le Tlgre) li tuffidefit 
and muflteetMy . 



lU THE DECLINE AND FALL 

people of Antioch had inherited the vain and satirical genius of their anoeston , 
Uiej were elated by a sudden reinforcement of six thousand soldiers ; they d^ 
dained the offers of an easy capitulation ; and their intemperate clamours io- 
fiulted from the ramparts the ittajesty of the great king. Under his eye die 
Persian myriads mounted with scaling ladders to the assault ; the Roman voer- 
cenaries fled through the opposite eate of Daphne : and the generous assistance 
of the youth of Antioch served onnr to aggravate the miseries of their countiy* 
M Chosroesy attended hj the ambassadors of Justinian, was descending from 
the mountain, he affected in a plaintive voice, to deplore the obstinacy a£ci ruin 
of that unhappy people ; but the slaughter still raujped with unrelenting funr; 
and the city, at tne command of a Barb^ian, was delivered to the flames. Tbe 
cathedral ol Antioch was indeed preserved by the avarice, not the piety, of the 
conqueror : a more honourable exemption was granted to the church of St. Julian, 
and the quarter of the town where the ambassadors resided ; some distant streets 
were saved by the shifting of the wind, and the walls still subsisted to protect, 
and soon to betray, their new inhabitants. Fanaticism had defaced the orna- 
ments of Daphne, but Cbosroes breatbed a purer air amidst her groves and 
fountains ; and some idolaters in his train might sacrifice with impunity to the 
nymphs of that ele^nt retreat Eighteen miles below Antioch, the river Orontes 
falls into the Mediterranean. The haughty Persian visited the term of his con« 

auests ; and after bathing alone in the sea, he offered a solemn sacrifice of 
lank^ivin^ to the sun, or rather to the creator of the sun, whom the Magi 
adored. Ifthis act of superstition offended the prejudices of the Syrians, thej 
were pleased by the courteous and even eager attention with which he assisted 
at the games oi the circus ; and as Cbosroes had heard that the Idue faction was 
espoused by the emperor, his peremptoiy command secured the victory of the 
g^een charioteer. From the discipline of his camp the people derived more 
solid consolation ; and they interceded in vain for the life of a soldier who had 
too faithfully copied the rapine of the just Nushirvan. At length, fatigued, 
though unsatiated, with the spoil of S;|rria,*he slowly moved to the Euphrates, 
formed a temporal^ bridge in the neighbourhood of Barbalissus, and defined 
the space of three aays for the entire passage of his numerous host. Afler his 
return, he founded, at the distance of one day's journey from the palace of 
Ctesiphon, a new city, which perpetuated the joint names of Cbosroes and 
Antioch. The Syrian captives recognised the form and situation of their native 
abodes : baths and a stately circus were constructed for their use ; and a coloinr 
of musicians and charioteers revived in Assyria the pleasures of a Greek capital. 
By the munificence of the royal founder, a libenu allowance was assigned to 
these fortunate exiles ; and they enjoyed the singular privilege of bestowing 
freedom on the slaves whom they acknowledged as their kinsmen. Palestine, 
and the holy wealth of Jerusalem, were the next objects that attracted die am- 
bition, or rather the avarice, of Cbosroes. Constantinople, and the palace of the 
Cesars no longer apj^ared impreg^ble or remote: and his aspiring fancy 
already covered Asia Minor witn the troops, and the filack sea with the navies 
of Persia. 

SA. D. 644.1 These hopes might have been realized, if the conqueror of 
y had not been seasonably recalled to the defence of the East.(63) While 
Cbosroes pursued his ambitious designs on the coast of the Euxioe, Belisarius, 
at the head of an army without pay or discipline, encamped beyond the £u- 

Sbrates, within six miles of Nisibis. He meditated, by a skilful operation, to 
raw the Persians from their impregnable citadel, and improving his advantages 
in the field, either to hitercept tneir retreat, or perhaps to enter the gates with 
the flying Barbarians. He advanced one day s journey on the territories of 
Persia, reduced the fortress of Sisaurane, and sent the governor, with eiffht 
Hundred chosen horsemen, to serve the emperor in his Italian wars. He de- 

(63) In dw public bbtory of Proeoplui (P«raic. L 11. c 16. 18, IS, 80, SI. 94. 9S, 96. 97, 98): uid, with 
■oiM ittKht excepUoM, we may reMODably ihut our mn afslMt Um maittwoktax wUiper of Um (\wm 
dolM (e. 9, 3, with Um Noi«t, aa tuual, of Alamanmia). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 113 

^ched Arethas and his Arabs, supported by twelve hundred Romansy to pass 
the Tigris, and to ravage the harvests of Assyria, a fruitful pfovince, long ex- 
empt from the calamities of war. But the plans of fielisarius were disconcerted 
by the untractaUe spirit of Arethas, who neither returned to the camp, nor sent 
«ny intelligence of nis motions. The Roman general was fixed m anxious 
expectation to the same spot ; the iime of action elapsed, the ardent sun of 
Mesc^amia inflamed with fevers the blood of his European soldiers : and the 
stationaiy troops and officers of Syria affiscted to tremble for the safety of their 
defenceless cities. Yet this diversion had already succeeded in forcing Chos- 
loes to return with loss and precipitation ; and if the skill of Belisarius bad been 
seconded br discipline and valour, bis success might have satisfied the sanguine 
wishes of the public, who required at his hands the conquest of Ctesiphon and 
the deliverance of the captives of Antioch. At the end of the campais^, he was 
recalled to Constantinople by an ungrateful court, but the dangers of the ensuing 
spring restored his confidence and command ; and the hero^ almost alone, was 
despatched with the speed of po6t4ior8es, to repel, by his name and presence, 
the invasion of Syria. He Ibund the Roman generals, among whom was a ne 
phew of Justinian^ imprisoned b^ their fears in the fortifications of Hierapolis. 
But instead of listening to their timid counsels, Belisarius commanded them to 
follow him to Europus, where he had resolved to collect his forces, and to exe- 
cute whatever God should inspire him to achieve against the enemy. His firm 
attitude on the banks of the Euphrates, restrained Chosroes from advancing 
toward Palestine ; and he received, with art and dignity, the ambassadors, or 
rather spies, of the Persian monarch. The plain betw-een Hierapolis and the 
river was covered with the squadrons of cavalry, six thousand hunters tall and 
lobust, who pursued their game without the apprehension of an enemy. On 
the opposite bank the ambassadors descried a tnousand Armenian boise, who 
appeared to guard the passage of the Euphrates. The tent of Belisarius was 
of the coarsest linen, the simfue equipage of a warrior who disdained the luxury 
of the East Around his tent, the nations who marched under hb standard, 
were arranged with skilful confusion. The Thracians and Illyrians were 
posted in front, the Heruli and Goths m the centre ; the prospect was closed 
with the Moors and Vandals, and their loose array seemed to multiply their 
numbers. Their dress was light and active ; one soldier carried a whip, ano- 
ther a sword, a third a bow, a fourth perhaps a battle-axe, and the whole pic- 
ture exhibited the intrepidity of the troops and the vigilance of the general. 
Chosroes was deluded bj the address, ana awed by the genius, of the lieuten- 
ant of Justinian. Conscious of the merit, and ignorant of the force, of his an- 
tagonist, he dreaded a decisive battle in a distant country, from whence not a 
Persian might return to relate the melancholy tale. The great king hastened 
to repass the Euphrates ; and Belisarius pressed his retreat, by aflfecting to 
oppose a measure so salutary to the empire, and which could scarcely fiave 
been prevented by an army of a hundred thousand men. Envy mig:ht suggest 
to ignorance and pride, that the public enemy had been suflfered to escape : but 
the African and Gothic triumphs are less glorious than this sn'e and bloodless 
victoiy, in which n^itlier fortune, nor ihe valour of the soldiers, can subtract 
any part of the i^eneral's renown. I'he second removal of Belisarius from the 
Persian to the Italian war, revealed the extent of his personal merit, whicli had 
corrected or supplied the want of di>cipline and courac:?. Fifieen gt^nerals, 
without concert or skill, led throu2;h the motmlain* of Armenia an army of thirty 
thousand Romans inattentive to iheir si2:nals, their r:ink«, and theii ens'pns. 
Four thousand Persians, intrenched in the ca'np of Duhis, vanquished, almost 
without a combat, this di-orderly nuiltitn le ; iheir ii«?e'e'?s nrn<5 were scattered 
along the road, and their horses sunk under the falit?ue of llieir rapid flight. 
But the Arabs of' the Homan parly prevniled over thcT hrethrm ; the Armeni- 
ans returned to iheir alleiri.inne ; the cities of Dara ami Rdessa resisled a sud- 
den assault and a regular sie^e, ami the calam ties of war were suspended »>y 
those of pestilence. A tacit or formal agreement between the t^vo-«o^e reigns, 
protected the tranquillity of the eastern frontier : and the arms of Chosroes 
Vw,, III.-I 



114 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

were coofined to the Colchian or Lazic war, which has been too mfoiHej^ 
described by the historians of the tiine8.(64^ 

The extreme lenp^th of the Euxine sea,(65) from Constantinople to the moiitftF 
of the Phesis, mav be computed as a voyage of nine days, and a measure of 
seven hundred miles. From (he Iberian Caucasus, the most lofty and craggy 
mountains of Asia, that river descends with such oblique vehemence, that m a 
short space it is traversed by one hundred and twenty bridges. Nor does the 
stream become placid and navigable till it reaches tbe town of SanjMiia, five 
days' journey from the Cyrus, which flows from the same hills, hot in a con 
trary direction, to the Caspian lake. The nroximity of these rivers bad sug- 
gested the practice, or at least the idea, of waftine the ptecious merchandise 
of India down the Oxus, over the Caspian, up the Cyms, and with the current 
of the Fhasis into the Euxine and Mediterranean seas. As it successively col- 
lects the streams of the nlain of Colchos, the Phasis moves with diminished 
speed, though accuniulated we«ht. At the mouth it is sixtr fathoms deep, and 
half a league broad, but a small woody island is interposed in the midst of the 
channel ; Die water, so soon as it has deposited an earthy or metallic sediment, 
floats on the surface of the waves, and is no longer susceptible of corruption. 
In a course of one hundred miles, rorty of which are navurable for large vessels^ 
the Phasis divides the celebrated region of Colcho6,^6) or Miiigrelia,(67) 
which, on three sides, is fortified by the Iberian and Aimenian mountains, ami 
whose maritime coast extends about two hundred miles from the neighbour- 
hood of Trebizond to Dioscurias, and tbe confines of Circassia. Both the soil 
and climate are relaxed by excessive moisture ; twenty-eight rivers, besides 
tbe Phasis and his dependent streams, convey their waters to the sea ; and die 
hollowness of the ground appears to indicate the subtemaeous channels between 
the Euxine and the Caspian. In the fields where wheat or bariey is sown, the 
earth is too soft lo susum the action of the plough ; but the ran, a small grain^ 
not unlike the millet or coriander seed, supplies the orainanr food m the 
people ; and the use of bread is confined to the prince and his nobles. Yet the 
vintage is more plentiful than the harvest ; and the bulk of tbe steossas well as 
the quality of the wine, display the unassuted powera of nature. Tbe same 

E>wers continually lend to orerriiadow the face of the countiy with thick 
rests; the timber of the hills and tbe flax of the plains, contribute to the 
abundance of naval stores , the wild and tame animals, the horae, tbe oi, and 
the ho^, are remaricably prolific, and the name of the pheasant n expressive of 
fats native habitation on the banks of the Phasis. The gold mines to the south 
of Trebizond, which are still worked with sufficient profit, were a subject of 
Datk>nal dispute between Justinian aiKl Chosroes : and it is not unreasonable to 
believe that a vein of precious metal may be equally diffused through the circle 
of the bills, although these secret treasures are neglected by tbe laziness, or 




k by > 

Kcoce of M. doBrofMB, ftnt prashtait of Uie iMritament oT D^Jon (HiM. de la RepubliqiM Romkine. torn, 
ift. 1. ilL p. I«S— MS), who Tcntunt lo •Hun* Um dwracter of dw Roumd btaiorlaB. HimdmetlMhatl 
Uie Euxine is iBgeniouily fonnea of «tt tbe fragorats of Uie origioal, and of ell Um Greek* and LaUMr 
whom Salloet might eomr, or by whom he might be copied : and tbe merit of the execution iionee fbr the 
whimklcal deeign. 9. The Fenplttf of Afrin ie addremed lo the tmnctor Adrian (in Geop 



„ tmnctor i ^^ 

Httdeon, torn. I.) Md cooulne whatever the governor of PonUis bad eeen, ftom TreblaMid lo Pioeqn- 
rias; whatever lie had heard from Dioecuriae to tbe Danube ; and whatever be knew (Vom the Danube 
to TreMtoiML 

(aS) Beridee tlM many oeeaiional hlato fttim Uie peeto. hiiiorlmie. Jte. of amiqaiiy, wa mn oomiqit 
the nographlcal deeeriptione of Golcboe, by Stiabe (L xl. p. 700-78$), and PUny (Hiat. Natur. vL 5. 




$!• % SB- S4, 65. 71, Stc and a more recent treatiae, Siur Ie Commerce de la If er Noire, torn. M. •• 
1—93): he IumI long realded at Callb, aa conaol of France, and Ida emditton la leaa vahiaole than nb 
txpbnance 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. iii* 

bgr the piudcnce, of tfae Min^iam* Tht wafen, itinpi«gfn»ti^ 
Willi fMvtioMS of gold, aw carefully siramed tiirougli iheep-skins or ieeetn ; 
but this expedientf the mtttKliirork perhaps of a tnaiv«lloiis fable, affords s^ 
£akA iBMge of the weatlh extracted from a Virgin earth by the power and 
industry of ancieat kkigs. Their sil^r palaces and golden chambers surpass 
«ai belief; but the fame of their riches is said to have eicited the enterprising 
aivarice of the Afgofiauts.(S8) Tradition has afftnned with some colour of rea- 
son, tint Egypt planted on the Phasis a leaitied and polite cb)on7^(e9) whicfr 
nanuiactupea linen, built navies, and invented geographical maps. The inge- 
nuity of ike modems has peofded, with flourisliinff cities and mitlons, the 
isthmus between the Ckuine and the Caspian ;{tO^ and a lively writer^observins' 
the nsemblsnee of dimate, and, in his apprehenston^ of trade, has not hesitatea* 
to pranounce CSolchos theHolland of airtiouity.<71) 

But the riches of Colchos shine only thnougn the daricness of conjecture or 
tradition; snd its gemine history presents a uniform scene of rudeness and 
poveity. if one hundred' and thirty langwa^es were spoken fn the market of 
I>iQSciiriaB,(7£) they were the ionperfeet idioms of so many savage tribes or 
ianaities sequestesed from each oqmr in the valleys of Mount Caucasus ; and 
their separatbn, which diminished the importance, must have multipfied the 
nurobert of their rustic capitalii, in the present state of Mingrefia, a village i» 
an assembla^ of Iwts wittiin a wooden fence ; the fortresses a?e seated in the 
depths of ioMts ; tiie princely town of Cyta, or Cotatis, consistsof t wo hundrect 
houses, and a stone edifice appertains only lo the magnificence of kings.- 
Twelve ships from Constantinople, and about sixty barks, laden with the fruits 
of indostryv anmnlly oast anchor mt the ooast ; and the list of Cotchian exports 
is much increased, since ibe natives had only sfaves and hides to oflRer inr 
exchange forftbecom and salt which UieT ptn^hased from the solg'ects of Jus* 
tiniafL Not a vestige ean be fotmd of ttie art, the knowMge, or the naviga- 
tion, of the ancient Colohians ; few Greeks desired or dared to pursue the foot* 
steps of the Aigonaiili ; and even (he marks of an Egyptian colony are lost on 
a nearer appmach. The site of cireumciston is practised only by the Maho- 
inetans.of Ihe Euxine^ nnd tiie curled hair and swartl^ complexion of Afrfcar 
no longer disfigure the most perfisct of the human race. It is in the adjacent 
dknates of Geoma, Mingvaiia, and Cireassia, that nature has placed, at least to 
our eyes, tlie mcNoel of beauty, in the shape of the limbs, the colour of thie skin, 
Ihe symmetry of tfae features, and the expression of the countenance. (73) Ae- 
conding to the destsnalkm of the two sexes, the men seeiin formed for actkm^ Ihe^ 
women for kwe ; and tlie perpetual supply of females from mount Caucasus 
has purified tftie bloody and unproved the breed, of the southern nations of Asia. 
The proper district of MingWlia, a portion only of the ancient Cotchos, b^ss- 
long sustained an exportation of twelve thousand slaves. The number of pri- 
soners and criminals would be inade<|uate to the annuai demand ; but the com- 
mon people are in a state of servitude to their lords t the exercise of fraud or. 
rapine is unpunished in a lawless commtmity ; and the market is continnal^ 
Kplenished by the abuse of civil and patemal authority. Such a trade,(74) 

m Fliii7« RIM. Nttar. I. xzxIU. IS. The gold nid Mver mlnm of CMeAot tttracted the Arpmaats i 
(Strab. 1. 1. ]». 77). The H^acioun Chardin eould find no fold in mineiL riven, or alaewbere. Yet a M fn^* 
greUaa loar Mm hand and foot for i4)0\viiift Mmie tiMieiinefw at Conatantlnople of native gold. 

fSS) BeradoL L II. e. 104^ 1SS, p. ISO, ISl. DIodor. Sknl. L I. p. 3S, edit. Weaaellng , DIonya. ferMgec: 
S89, and Euatatb. ad loc SchollaA. ad ApoUoahim Arfonaut. 1. ff. gSS-891. 

00) Mimtaaqalea, Bqpdt dea Loi», L mJ. c S, I«*bUiiM....coaveit de vlUea el natloiM qufne fSnr 
plua. 

01) BoqplmriMe, llenotrca de rAcadcmte dsa IiiKriptlona, torn. xxrt. p. 83^ on ttM Africaa voyage 
of Baaoo aad tlie comaBeree of antlqnitf . 

CK) A Cheek hlMorian, TtafMMthenee, had afllrnaed, hi earn ece natlonee dfapfmliibtM Kiiftiia desee^ 
Sere ; and the loodait FitaF fa oooient to add, el a poetea a noetris cxzx Interpcetlbna negotla Ibi gest* 
\vi. 5), but tbe worda nnnedeeerta cover a roultltode of past flctlona. 

pS) Bolfim (HM. Nat torn. III. p. 433--4S7,) colleeia the ananfanoaa BofTrage of natdralista atra^ 
travellera. If, In the time of Herodotua. they were in trulh ufXayvpecf *"<! vXarpixcr (^nd be had! 
ohaerved ibeiti wUh care), thia precloua foct la an earampie or tbe influence of elimnte on a foreign* 
eokmy. 

(74) Tbe Mlngrenan amfaoaBador arrived at Conatantlnople witfa two handre«3 percona ; bnt he arts' 
(mM) them day by day, till bla retinue waa dimlnWied to ■ aecretary and two valeia (Ta vernier, tduu S 



lU THE DECLINE AND FALL 

which reduces the human species to the level of cattle, may tend to encoorMre 
marria^^e and population ; smce the multitude of children enriches their sordid 
^nd inhuman parent. But this source of impure vrealth must inevitahly poison 
the national manners, obliterate the sense of honour and virtue, ana almost 
extinguish the instincts of nature : the Oirid am of Georgia and Mingrelia are 
the most dissolute of mankind; and their children, who, in a tender age, are 
sold into foreign slaveqr, have already learned to imitate the rapine of the 
father, and the prostitution of the mother. Yet, amidst the rudest ignorance, 
the untaught natives discover a singular dexterity both of mind and hand ; and 
although the want of union and discipline exposes them to their more powerful 
oeiehmxirs, a bold and intrepid spirit has animated the Colchians of every age. 
In the host of Xerxes, they served on foot ; and their arms were, a dagger or a 
javelin, a wooden casque, and a buckler of raw hides. But in their own countiy 
the use of cavalry has more generally prevailed : the meanest of the peasants 
<disdain to walk ; the martial nobles are possessed, perhaps, of two hundred 
^borses ; and above five thousand are numbered in the train of the prince oi 
Mingrelia. The Colchian government has been always a pure and hereditaiy 
Jcingdom ; and the authority of the sovereign is only restrained by the turbu- 
lence of bis subjects. Whenever they were obedient, he could lead a mime- 
ix>us army into the field ; but some faith is requisite to believe, that the sinele 
tribe of the Suanians was composed of two hundred thousand soldiers, or that 
the population of Mingrelia now amounts to four millions of ii^abitants.( 75) 

It was the boast oltbe Colchians, that their anceston had checked the vic^ 
tories of Sesostris ; and the defeat of the Egyptian is less Aicredible than his 
successful progress as far as the foot of mount Caucasus. They sunk without 
any memorable effort, under the arms of Cyrus ; followed in distant wars the 
standard of the great king, and presented him every fifth year with one hundred 
hoys and as many vireins, the fairest produce of the land. (76) Yet he accepted 
this gift like the gold and ebony of India, the frankincense of the Arabs, or the 
negroes and ivoiy of Ethiopia : the Colchians were not subject to the dominion 
of a satrap, and they continued to enjoy the name as well as substance of 
national independence. (7j0 After the fall of the Persian empire, Mithridates, 
king of Pontus, added Colchos to the wide circle of his dominions on the 
Euxine ; and when the natives presumed to reauest that his son might reign 
over them, he bound the ambitious youth in chains of gold, and delegated a 
servant in his place. In the pursuit of Mithidrates, the Romans advanced to 
the banks of the Phasis, and their galleys ascended the river till they reached 
the camp of Pompey and his legions.(78) But the senate, and afterward the 
-emperors, disdained to reduce that distant and useless conquest into the form of 
a province. The family of a Greek rhetorician was permitted to reign in 
Culchos and the adjacent kingdom, from the time of Mark Antony to that of 
IjfeFO ; ani after the race of Polemo(79) was extinct, the eastern Pontus, which 
preserved lu< name, extended no farther than the neighbourhood of Trebizond. 
Beyi»n 1 these limits the fortifications of Hjssus, of Apsarus, of the Phasis, of 
.Dioscurias or iScbastopolis, and of Pity us, were guarded by sufficient detach- 

ft 3(5), To pircl>a. » liii tnistreflB, a Mingreliaa genUonian told twelve priests and his wife to tite Turks 
X'h ird»»i, ♦om i. p 6*^. 

(7'>) 8r Bh ». 1. xl p 705. Lanibertl, Relaiion de la Mln«reUe. Yet we must avoid the contrary ex- 
tr • lie 'if Clia ilin, w .o 'illows no more than -200,000 inli::I»ilanl8 to aupply an aanuol exiwrtation of 
y2,001 ■*' tv(>< : n.i n*ic.ii liny unworthy of that judicious traveller. 

(7 «) \le.r.)AitL 1. lii. c. U7. See in 1. vil. c 79| their arms and service in tlie expedition of Xerxes against 
C • cpcv. 

f7r^ X-u) »?on, ^'\n hnd encountered the ColcWans in his retreat (Anabnsis, 1. ir.p. 390. 343. 34e, 
M\ '. U itc'iin-") I . i .(] Pwter's Disisertation, p. 53— SJ, in Spclmaii's Enpiish version, vol. il.) styles them 
jtirtvtuv lt>*r> f (lif cmqiiest of Mithridates, tliey are named by Appian t^voi apeitiavss (de Bell. 
^Iituriilii \r'\ r. 15, t>.!i. i. p. 661, of the lasi ajid best edition, by Joliu iScbweigiwuscr, Lipeiie, 17d^,? 

|r »'4 In "" 'K-t.lVO) 

(?■«) I' i«* c. "•.|'ir.-' M^ rolchos by Milliridates and Pompey, is marked l)y Appian (de Bell. Jklilhridat.) 
and Pill' I ••i' 'i I il P'Miip.) 

n.)) W- iiuiy tn-ihe rise and fall of the family of ro!emo,in Strabo (I. xi. p. 755, 1. xii. p. Sen. 
l>i','j rjwi JM or yiphi'in (p. 588. 593. 601. 719. 754. 915. 946, edit. Reiniar), J=«MPtoniiiB (in Xcr<'n. c. 18, in 
Vespasian, c. 8), Euirupius (vii. 14), Joacphus (Aiitlq. Judaic. 1. xx. c. 7, l. ?7i), sdlt. Uavercamp), njid 
Bmabius (Cluoa. witii Scaliger, Auimadvers. p. 196}. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. n> 

nents of hone and foot ; and six princes of Colcbos received their diadem»^ 
fiom the lieutenants of Cesar. One of these lieutenants, the eloquent and 
philosophic Arrian, surveyed, and has described, the Euxine coast, under the 
reign oi Hadrian. The earrison which he reviewed at the mouth of the Phasis^ 
consisted of four hundred chosen legionaries ; the brick walls and towers, the 
double ditch, and the military engines on the rampart, rendered this place 
inaccessible to the Barbarians ; but the new suburbs, which had been built by 
the merchants and veterans, required, in the opinion of Arrian, some external 
defence. (80) As the strength of the empire was gradually impaired, the- 
Romans stationed on the Phasis were either withdrawn or expelled ; and the 
tribe of the Lazi,(81) whose posterity speak a foreign dialect, and inhabit the 
sea-coast of Trebizond, imposed their name and dominion on the ancient king-^ 
dom of Colchos. Their independence was soon invaded by a formidable 
neighbour, who had acauired, oy arms and treaties, the sovereignty of Iberia*. 
The dependent king of Lazica received his sceptre at the hands of the Persian 
mooarcb, and the successors of Constantiae acquiesced in this injurious claim^ 
which was proudly uiged as a rif^ht of immemorial prescription. In ^e begin- 
ning of the sixth centuiy, their influence was restored by the introduction of 
Chifistianity, which the Mingrelians still professed with becoming zeal, without 
understanding the doctrines, or observing the precepts, of their religion. After 
the decease of his fether, Zathus was eulted to the regal dignity by the favour 
of the great king : but the pious youth abhorred the ceremonies of tbe MagiV 
and sought, in the palace of Constantinople, an orthodox baptism, a noble wHe» 
and the alliance of the emperor Justin. The king of Lazica was solemnly 
invested with the diadem, and his cloak and tunic of white silk, with a gold 
border, dbplayed, in rich embroidery^ the figure of his new patron, wha 
soothed the iealousy of the Persian court, and excused the revolt of Colcbos br 
the venerable names of hospitality and religion. The common interest of bota 
empires imposed on the Colchiaas the duty of guarding the passes of mount 
Caucasus, where a wall of sixt^ miles is now defended oy the monthly service 
of the musqueteers of Mingrelia.(83) 

[A. D. 542—^9.] But this honourable connexion was soon comipted by the 
avarice and ambition of the Romans. Degraded from the rank of allies, the 
Lazi were incessantly reminded, by words and actions, of their dependent state.. 
At the distance of a day's journey beyond the Apsarus, they beheld the rising 
fortress of Petni,(83) which commanded the maritime country to the south ^ 
the Phasis. Instead of being protected by the valour, Colcbos was insulted by 
tbe licentiousness, of forei^ mercenaries ; the benefits of commerce were con- 
verted into base and vexatious monopoly ; and Gubazes, the native prince, waa 
reduced to a pageant of royalty, by the superior influence of the officers of 
Justinian. Disappointed in their expectations of Christian virtue, the indi^nt 
Lazi reposed some confidence in the justice of an unbeliever. After a private 
assurance that their ambassadors should not be delivered to the Romans, ther 
publicly solicited the friendship and aid of Chosroes. The sagacious monarch 
instantly discerned the use and importance of Colcbos ; and meditated a plan 
of conquest, which was renewed at the end of a thousand jears hj[ Shah Aboas^ 
the wisest and most powerful of hb succes8ors.(84) His ambition was fired 

(80) Id die time of Proeoplaf, there were no Eomftn fime od the Phasie. Pityne Mid SehutopoUe wep» 
evacoaicd <m Uw nimoor of Um Peraiam (Goth. I. W. c. 4), but the latter wasalkerward leiiored by Jna- 
Unian (de Edif. L iv. c 7). 

(81) In the Ume of Pllny, Arrian, and Piolemy, the Lazi were a particulBr tribe on the northern aktate 
of Colchoe (CellarioB, Geograph. AnUq. torn. ii. p. W). In the age of JoiUnian, Uiey inead. or at leaft 
reigned, over tbe whole coantry. At preaent, they have migrated along the coast toward Trebizond, and 
corapoee a rude aea-lhring people, with a pecaliar languue (Chardln, p. 149. Peyannel, p. 04). 

^ (8ft) John Halaia, Chron. torn. ii. p. 134r>137. Theopbanea, n. 144. HIat. Miiotfl. 1. zv. p. 103. Tb« 
net ia authentic, bat the dates seem too recent. In speaking of iheir Persian alliance, the I«azi contem 
poiarias of Justinian employ the most obaoleie words— cv ypa^f^avi itvtfuuas tspoywov, Ikc Ooukl ibtj 
bekmg to a eonnezion which had not been dissolved above twenty years t 

dBO) The sole vasUge of Petra subaisiB in the wriancs of Proeopius and Agathlaa. If oat of the town* 
■ad castles of Laaica may be found by comparing theii namea and position with the map of Mingrelia, 
iai — "— ' 



(64) See tbe amusing letters of Pietro della Valle, the Roman traveller (Viaggi, tom. it. 907. 900. 813. 
215. 966. 98S. 3(W, tom. JiL p. 51. 197). In the years ISIS, 1610, and 1G!M), he conversed with Shah Ahbaa^ 



llir THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Irp-fhe hope of laanching a Persian navy from the Phaaki of commaBdin^ toe 
trade and navieation of the Euxine sea, of desolating the coast of PoDtfs and 
fifth^nia, of matressing^, perhaps of attacking, Constantinople; and of pei<» 
suadmg the Barbarians of^Eurooe to second his aims and counsels against the 
common enemy of mankind. Under tbe pretence of a Scjtbian war, be silently 
ied his troops to tbe frontiers of fberia ; tbe Colcbian pcuides were prepared to 
conduct them through the woods and aloitt: ^^ precipioesof mount Caucasus ; 
and a narrow path was laboriously formed into a saie and spacious bigbway, 
for tbe march of cavaliy^ and even of elephants. Oubazes laid bis person and 
diadem at the feet of the king of Persia ; bis Colcbians imitated tbe sobmissicil 
of their prince ; and after the walls of Petra bad been shaken, tbe Roman 

farrison prevented, by a capitulation, the impendinr fuiy of tbe last assault. 
tut the Lazi soon discovered, that their impatience bad liifed tbem ia choose 
^n evil more intolerable than the calamities which they stiove to escape. Tbe 
^nonopolv of salt and com was effectually removed by the kMof those valuable 
commodities. Tbe authority of a Roman legislator was succeeded by tbe pride 
of an Oriental despot, wbo beheld, with equal disdain, tbe slaves ivrbom be 
had exalted, and the kiitt;s whom he bad bumbled, before tbe footstool of bis 
Ihrone. The adoration of fire was introduced into Colchos l^ tbe zeal of the' 
Magi : their intolerant spirit provoked tbe fervour of a Christian people j ^nd 
the prejudice of nature or education was wounded by tbe impious practice of 
exposing the dead bodies of their parents, on the summit of a loAy tower, to 
<be crows and vultures of tbe air.(85) Conscious o( tbe inoreasinr hatred, 
which retarded the execution of bisjgneat desis^ns, tbe just Nusbirvan bad 
secretly given orders to assassinate tne kin^ of the Lazi, to transplant the 
people into some distant land, and to fix a faithful and warlike colony on tbe 
h^ka of the Phasis. The watchful jealousy of the Colcbians foresaw and 
averted the approaching ruin. Their repentance was accepted at Constan* 
tinople by the prudence, rather than the cfemency, of Justinian ; and he cob»- 
manded Dagisteus, with seven thousand Romans, and one tboosandof tbeZani,^ 
to expel the Persians from the coast of the Euxiiie. 

fA. D. 64»->-55l.] The siege of Petra, which the Roman general, wkb tbe 
.^KTof the Lazi, immediately undertook, is one of tbe inost remarkable actiona 
of the age. The city was seated on -a craggy rock, whicb bung over ttie sea^ 
and communicated by a steep and narrow path with the land. Since tbe 
approach was difficult, the attack might be deemed impossible; the Persian 
conqueror had strer^bened tbe fortifications of Justinian ; and the places least 
.naccessible were covered by additbnal bulwarks. In this important fortress, 
the vigilanoe of Cbosroes had deposited a magazine of offensive and defensive 
arms, sufficient for five times the number, not only of the garrison, but of the 
besiegers themselves. The stock of flour and salt provisions was adequate to 
-the consumption of five years ; tbe want of wine was supplied by vinegar, end 
by grain from whence a strone liquor was extracted ; and a triple aqueduct 
•eluded the diligence and even the suspicions, of the enemy. But the firmest 
defence of Petra was placed In the valour of fifteen hundred Persians, who 
resisted the assaults of tne Romans, while, in a softer v^in of earth, a mme was 
secretly perforated. The wall, supported by slender and temporary props, 
liung tottering in the air ; but Dagisteus delayed t^ie attack till be had secured 
a specific recompense ; and tbe town was relieved he(ore tbe return of bis 
roesseneer from Uonstantioople. Tbe Persian garrison was reduced to four 
hundred men, of whom no more than fifty were exempt from sicknezs or 
wounds ; yet such had been their inflexible perseverance, that they concealed 
their losses froni the enemy, by enduring, without a murmur, the sight and 

.and ■tronglT enoounged a detlgii tvbleh mlgbt have united Pcnia and Europe agaimt Uieir oomoMW 
«neiny Uie Turk. 

(85) See ilerodolas 0- i- e. 140, p. SO), who speake with diffidence, Larchcr (tom. i. |». 399-401 
Kotee nir Herodote), Procoplui Feme. 1. 1. e. 11, and ApatMas (1. ii. p. 61, di). Thfai ptaetke, acreeabla 
to Uie Zendaveeta (Hyde, de Rellg. Per*, c. 34, p. 414—431), demonstrates that the burial of tbe Persian 
ktnai ^Xenophon, Cympied. 1. vlli. p. 686), n yap rvrv lUiKafHttrsp^ rvntyn ncxfiip^h <■ • Graek fiction, 
.ana that tbeir tombs could be no more than eenoiapba 



OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. 119 

jinp stench of the dead bodies of their eleven hundred coropaniom. 

fler their deliverance, the breaches were hastily stopped with sand-bags ; (he 
mine was replenished with earth ; a new wall was erected on a frame of sub- 
stantial timber ; and a fresh earrison of three thousand men was stationed at 
Petra to sustain the labours of a second siege. The operations, both of the 
attack and defence, were conducted with skilful obstinacy ; and each party 
derived useful lessons from the experience of their past faults. A batterin|[-ram 
was invented, of light coastruction and powerful effect ; it was transported and 
-worked by the hands of forty soldiers ; and as the stones were loosened by its 
repeated strokes, they were torn with 'long iron hooks from the wall. From 
those walls, a shower of darts was incessantly poured on the heads of the 
assailants, but they were most dangerously annoyed by a fiery composition of 
sulphur and bitumen, which in Colchos might with some propriety be named 
the oil of Medea. Of six thousand Romans who mounted the scaling-ladders, 
their general, Bessas, was the first, a gallant veteran of seventy yeak-s of age : 
^he courage of their leader, his fall, and extreme danger, animated the irre- 
-sistible e&rt of his troops 3 and their prevailing numbers oppressed the strene^h, 
without subduing the spint, of the Persian garrison. The fate of these vafiant 
men deserves to be more distinctly noticed. Seven hundred had perished in 
the sif^e, two thousand three hundred survived to defend the breach. One 
thousand and seventy were destroyed with fire and sword in the last assault ; 
and if seven hundred and thirty were made prisoners, only eighteen amoi^ 
them were found without the marks of honourable wounds. The remainii^ 
five hundred escaped into the citadel, which thej maintained without any hopes 
•of relief, rejecting the fairest terms of capitulation and service, till they were 
lost in the flames. They died in obedience to the commands of their prince ; 
and such examples of loyalty and valour might excite their countrymen to 
deeds of eoual despair and more prosperous event The instant demolition 
of the works of Petra confessed the astonishment and apprehension of the 
'Conqueror. 

[A. D. 649 — 551.] A Spartan Would have nraised and pitied the virtue of 
these heroic slaves ; but the tedious warfare ana alternate success of the Ronian 
and Persian arms cannot detain the attention of posterity at the foot of mount 
Caucasus. The advantages obtained by the troops of Justinian were more 
frequent and splendid ; but the forces of^the ereat king were continually sup- 
plied, till they amounted to eieht elephants ana seventy thousand men, including 
twelve thousand Scythian allies, and above three thousand Dileroites, who 
descended by their free choice from the hills of Hyrcania, and were equally 
formidable in close or in distant combat. The siege of Archseopolis, a name 
imposed or corrupted by the Greeks, was raised with some loss and precipita- 
tion ; but the Persians occupied the passes of Iberia : Colchos was enslaved 
by their forts and garrisons ; thejr devoured the scanty sustenance of the people ; 
and the prince of the Lazi fled into the mountains. In the Roman camp, faith 
and discipline were unknown ; and the independent leaders, who were invested 
with equalpower, disputed with each other the pre-eminence of vice and cor- 
ruption. The Persians followed, without a murmur, the commands of a sir^le 
chief, who implicitly obeyed the instructions of their supreme lord. Their 
general was aistinguishea amons^ the heroes of the £ast, by his wisdom in 
council, and his valour in the field. The advanced age of Mermeroes, and the 
lameness of both his feet, could not diminish the activity of his mind, or even 
of bis body ; and while he was carried in a litter in the front of battle, he 
inspired terror to the enemy and a just confidence to the troops who, under his 
banners, were always successful. After his death, the command devolved to 
Narcorag^n, a proud satrap, who, in conference with the imperial chiefs, bad 
presumed to declare that he disposed of yictory as absolutely as of the nng on 
ais finger. Such presumption was the natural cause and forerunner of a shame- 
iu\ defeat The Romans had been gradually repulsed to the edge of the sea- 
-ihore ; and their last camp, on the ruins of the Grecian colony of Phasis, was 
^fefended on all nde^ by strong intrenchments> the river, tbe Euxine, ami t 



120 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

fleet of galleys. Despair united their counsels and invigorated their anD»- 
tfaey withstood the assaults of the Persians ; and the flight of Nicoragan pre- 
ceded or followed the slaughter of ten thousand of his bravest soldiers. He 
escaped from the Romans to fall into the hands of an unforgiving master, who 
severely chastised the error of his own choice ; the unfortunate general was 
flayed alive, and his skin, stuffed into the human form, was exposed on a 
mountain ; a dreadful warning to those who might hereafter be intrusted with, 
the fame and fortune of Persia. (86) Yet the prudence of Chosroes insensibly 
relinquished the prosecution of the Colcbian war, in the just persuasion, that 
it is impossible to reduce, or, at least, to hold, a distant country against the 
wishes and efforts of its inhabitants. The fidelity of Gubazes sustained the 
most rifirorous trials. He patiently endured the hardships of a savage life, and 
rejected, with disdain, the specious temptations of the Persian court.* The- 
king of the Lazi had been educated in the Christian reliction ; his mother was 
the daughter of a senator ; durine his youth, he had served ten years a silentiaiy 
of the &]^zantine palace,(87) and the arrears of an unpaid salary were a motive 
of attachment as well as ofcomplaint. But the long continuance of bis suffer 
ings extorted from him a naked representation of the truth ^ and truth was 
an unpardonable libel on the lieutenants of Justinian, who amid the delays of 
a ruinous war, had spared his enemies and trampled on his allies. Their 
malicious information persuaded the emperor, that his faithless vassal already 
meditated a second defection ; an order was issued to send him prisoner to/ 
Constantinople : a treacherous clause was inserted, that he mi^ht be lawfully 
killed in case of resistance ; and Gubazes, without arms, or suspicion of danger^ 
was stabbed in the security of a friendly interview. In tlie first moments of 
rage and despair, the Colchians would have sacrificed their country and religion, 
to the jgratificalion of revenge. But the authority and eloquence of the wisec 
few, obtained a salutaiy pause ; the victoiy of the Phasis restored the terror 
of the Roman arms, and the emperor was solicitous to absolve his oiyn name 
ficom the imputation of so foul a murder. A iudfi^e of senatorial rank was 
commissioned to inquire into the conduct and death of the king of the Lazi. 
He ascended a stately tribunal, encompassed by the ministers of justice and 
punishment : in the presence of both nations, this extraordinary cause was 
pleaded, according to the forms of civil jurisprudence, and some satisfaction 
was ^nted to an injured people, by the sentence and execution of the meaner 
criminals. (88) 

[A. D. 640 — 561.] In peace, the kine of Persia continually sought the pre- 
tences of a rupture ; but no sooner had be taken up arms than he expressed 
bis desire of a safe and honourable treaty. During the fiercest hostilities, the 
two monarchs entertained a deceitful negotiation ; and such was the superiority 
of Chosroes, that while he treated the Roman ministers with insolence and 
contempt, he obtained the most unprecedented honours for his own ambassadors 
at the imperial court. The successor of Cyrus assumed the majesty of the 
Eastern sun, and ^ciously permitted his youneer brother Justinian to reign, 
oyer the West, with the pale and reflected splendour of the moon. Thia 
gigantic style was supported hj the pomp and eloquence of Isdigune, one of 
the royal chamberlains. His wife and daughters, with a train of eunuchs and. 
camels, attended the march of the ambassador ; two satraps with golden dia- 
dems were numbered among his followers ; he was guarded by five hundred 
horse, the most valiant of the Persians ; and the Roman governor of Dara 
tvisely refused to admit more than twenfjr of this martial and hostile caravan. 



C9B) Tbe paaMuMnt of llaTliig alive could not be introdnccd Into Peraia by Sapor (Brtein, de Refo^ 
Fen. 1. ii. i». STB), nor could it do copied from tbe fooliab tele of Mamee the PbrTnan piper, moet fool- 
Mdirqaoted •■ a precedent by Agatbias (I. iv. p. ife, 133). 

g7) In the palace of Conetantinople there were thirty aHeadarlea, who are atyled liascatr ante fime- 
cobicuU, mt vtpK tmswott an honourable tlUe, which conferred the rank, without ioipoeing Uie diitica,. 
of aaenalor (Cfcd. Theodoe. I. vl tU. 23. Gothofred. Comment torn. Ii. p. IM). 

(88) On theee judicial orationa, Aa athiaa 0. lU- p. Bl— 80, 1, iv. p. 106—119), lavlahea eighteen or twenty 
1?^. ^ ^S ^^ ^^^ rhetoric. Hia Ignorance or careleaamaa overlooka the atrovgeat anument agaJnar 
the king of Laxica—hia former revolt.* « • -• 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. in 

When Isdig^une had saluted the emperor, and delivered bis presents, be passed 
ten months at Constantim^le without discussing any serious a£&irs. Instead of 
being confined to bis palace, and receiving food and water from the hands of 
bis keepeis, the Persian ambassador, without spies or guards, was allowed to 
visit the capital ; and the freedom of conversation and trade enjoyed by his- 
domestics ofended the prejudices of an age, which rigorously practised the law 
of nations, without conndence or courtesy. (89) By an unexampled indulgence, 
his interpreter, a servant below the notice of a Roman magistrate, was seated, 
at the table of Justinian, by the side of his master ^ and one thousand pounds- 
of gold might be assigned for the expense of his journey and entertamment. 
Tet the repeated labours of Isdigune could procure only a partial and imper- 
fect truce, which was always purchased with the treasures, and renewed at 
the solicitation, of the Byzantine court. Many years of fruitless desolatior 
elapsed before Justinian and Chosroes were compelled, by mutual lassitude* ta 
consult the repose of their declining age. At a conference held on the frontier, 
each party, without expecting to ^ain credit, displayed the power, the justice 
and the pacific intentions, of their respective, sovereicps; out necessity and 
interest dictated the treaty of peace which <ii«9t)onc]uded for the term of fifty 
years, diligently composed in the Greek and Peisian language, and attested by 
the seals of twelve interpreters. The liberty of commerce and religion was 
fixed and defined ; the allies of the emperor and the great king were included 
in the same benefits and obligations ; and the most scrupulous precautions weie 
provided to prevent or determine the accidental disputes that might arise on 
the confines of two hostile nations. After twenty years of destructive though 
feeble war, the limits still remained without alteration; and Chosroes was 
persuaded to renounce bis dangerous claim to the possession or sovereignty of. 
Colchos and its dependent states. Rich in the accumulated treasures of the* 
East, he extorted from the Romans an annual payment of thirty thousand pieces, 
of gold : and the smallness of the sum reveafea the disgrace of a tribute in its 
naked deformity. In a previous debate, the chariot of Sesostris, and the wheel 
of fortune, were appliea by one of the minbters of Justinian, who observed 
that the reduction of Antiocb, and some Syrian cities, had elevated beyond 
measure the vain and ambitious spirit of the Barbarian. ** You are mistaken." 
replied the modest Persian : ** the king of kings, the lord of mankind, looks 
down with contempt on such petty acquisitions ; and of the ten nations vaii' 

auished by his invincible arms, he esteems the Romans as the least formi* 
able. "(90) According to the Orientals, the empire of Nushirvan extended, 
from Fereanah in Transoxiana, to Yemen or Arabia Felix. He subdued the 
rebels of Hyrcania, reduced the provinces of Cabul and Zablestan on the banks 
of the Indus, broke the power of the Eutbalites, terminated by an honourable 
treaty the Turkish war, and admitted the daughter of the great khan into the 
number of his lawful wives; Victorious and respected among the princes of 
Asia, he gave audience, in his palace of Madain, or Ctesipbon, to the ambassa- 
dors of the world. Their gifts or tributes, arms, rich garments, gems, slaves, 
or aromatics, were humbly presented at the foot of his throne ; and he conde- 
scended to accept from the king of India, ten quintals of the wood of aloes,, 
a maid seven cubits in height, aM a carpet softer than silk, the skin, as it was^ 
reported, of an extraordinary serpent. (91) 

fA. D. 522.] Justinian had been reproached for hb alliance with the Ethio- 
pians, as if be attempted to introduce a people of savage ne^pY)es into the sys- 
tem of civilized society. But the friends of the Roman empire, the Axumites, 
or Abyssinians, may be always distinguished from the original natives of 

(83; Procopliu repretenta the practice of the Gothic court of Bavenna (Goth. 1. L c 7) ; and fbrelg1l^ 
imlNMadon have been treated with the eamo lealoaty and rlmur In Tarkay (BiubequtuB, eplM. Ui. p. 
148. MS, Ac) Rusiia (V«rate d*Orleariua}, and China (Narrative of M. de Lange, in BeU*a Travelai vol. 
If.p.189— 311>. 

(W) The negoUatiooe and tieatiea between JunUnlan and Choeroea are oopiouriy explained bv Proco- 
pim (Pereic I. It. c 10. 13. 96, S7, 88, Gothic ML c. 1 1. 15), Agathiaa (1. iv. p. Ml, 149), and Menande» 
(la Exeerpc LefL pw 13»~14T). Coaaolt Darbcyrac, Hist dee Ancieoa Traitex, torn. U. p. 154. 181— IRi. 

f»l) D'HerbekM, Bibliot Orient p. e3(S 681. 394, 395. 



l» THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Afri€a.(9S) Tbe band of nature has flattened the noies of the negroes, covered 
their heads with sbagry wool, and tinged their skin with inherent and indelible 
4>lackne6S. But the oTive complexion of the Abyssinians, their hair, shape, and 
features, distinctly mark them as a colony of Arabs ; and this descent n con- 
firmed by the resemblance of language and manners, the report of an ancient 
emigration, and the narrow interval between the shores of the Red sea. Chris- 
tianity had raised that nation above the level of African barbarism ;(93) their 
intercourse with Egypt, and the successors of Constantinc,(94) had communi- 
cated the rudiments of the arts and sciences ; their vessels traded to the isle of 
Cerlon,(95) and seven kingdoms obeyed the Negus or supreme prince of Abys- 
snia. The independence of the Homeritesytwho reignea in the rich and bappj 
Arabia, was first violated by an Ethiopian conqueror : he drew his heieditair 
claim from the queen of Sbeba,(96) and hb ambition was sanctified by reli- 
gious zeal. The Jews, powerful and active in exile, had seduced the mind of 
Dunaan, prince of the Homerites. The^ urged him to retaliate the persecu- 
tion inflicted by the imperial laws on their unfortunate brethren : some Roman 
merchants were injuriously treated ; and several Christians of Negra(97) were 
honoured with the crown of mart2^rrK>m.(98) The churches of Arabia implored 
the protection of the Abyssinian <monarob. The Negus passed the Red sea 
with a fleet and army, deprived the Jewish proselyte of his kingdom and life, 
and extinguished a race of princes who bad ruled above two thousand jears 
the sequestered region of myrrh and frankincense. The conqueror immedialel j 
announced the victory of the gospel, requested an orthodox patriarch, and so 
warmly professed his friendship to the Roman empire, that Justinian was flat- 
tered by the hope of diverting the silk trade through the channel of Abyssinia* 
and of excitiqg the forces of Arabia against the Persian king. Nonnosus, 
descended from a family of ambassadorsi was named by the emperor to execute 
this important commission. He wisely declined the shorter, but more dan- 
gerous, road through the sandy deserts of Nubia ; ascended the Nile, embariced 
on the Red sea, ami safely landed at the African port of Adulis. From Adulis 
to the royal city of Axume is no more than fifty leagues, in a direct line ; but 
the winding passes of the mountains detained the ambassador fifteen days ; and 
as he traversed the forests, he saw, and vaguely computed, about five thousand 
wild elephants. The capital, according to his report, was large and populous ; 
and the vitkige of Axume is still conspicuous by the regal coronations, by the 
Tuins of a Christian temple, and by sixteen or seventeen obelisks inscribed with 
Grecian characters.(99) But the NegusHgave audience in the open field, seated 

(03) See Bullbn, Hlft. Nttarelte, torn. ih. pw 44S. Thto Anl> eaU of ItenirM and eonptexkm, which 
has continaed 3400 ytnn (Ludolpb. Hfat et Commeni. iBUilopie. 1. L c 4), la the colooy of Abyaalnia, 
will Juritlfy Uie ■uapidon, that raoei aa w«U aa climate, muat have contributed to form the ncgroea of Uia 
a4|aceni and similar regions.* 

(03) The Poituauese mlarionartaa, AlTares (Baaittio, ttwi. I. Ibl. SOi» rect. 074. ▼en.), Barwodaa (Pur- 
etaaa'B PlWrUns, vol. H. L v. c 7, p. 1140— USO), Lobo (RelaUon, 4tc par M. ie Grand, with xr Dlsseita- 
"Jons, Parts, 1708), and Tellez (Relations de Thevenot, part iv.) eouM only reliite of modem Abyialfrfa 
what they had seen or invented. The erudition or Lndolpbna (Hi*. iEtbiopica, FiaacoAirt, ISBl. 
Commenurios, 1001. Appendix, 1004), in twenty-five languages, eould add little concerning its ancient 
hlsiory. Yet the fkme or Caled, or EUlathaus, tlie coqaoeror of Yemen, is celebrated in national songs 



(04) The neiotlationfl of Justinian wkh Um AnmilM, or EUiloplaiia, are recorded by Procnpins (Per- 
aie. 1. i. c 10,90), and John Malala (torn. li. p. lO^-lOS. 109—100). The historian of AnUoch quotes 
the original narrative of the ambassador Nonnomis, of which Phollos (BibUot, ood. iiL) has preserved a 
curious eztraci. 

(yS) The trade of Um Atumttes to the eoastof India and AfHca and Um Isle of Oeyloa, is curi- 
ooaly represented by Cosnw Indicopleuslas (Topor«ph. ChrlatiaB. 1. U. p. 130. UB, ISO, 140, 1. zl. p. 
338,330). 

(06) Lttdulph, Hist, et Comment .Atbiop. 1. Ik c. 3. 

(07^ The city of Negra, or Nag'ran, In Yemen, is surrounded with palm tre es, and stands in the high 
road between Saana the capital, and Mecca; from the former ten, from the latter twenty days* journey 
•of A caravan of camels (Abulfeda, DescripL Arabic, p. ST. 

(OB) The martyrdom of Sl Arethas, prince of Nm »> >od hii three bandred and forty coapantom^ 
is cnibelliahed In the legends of Metaphrastes and Nicephorus Callistus, copied by Baroains (A. D. 
S», No S0-4M1. A. D. 283, No. 10-30), and refuted, with obeeure diligence, by Basnage (Hist. 
4es Juift, tom. xli. I. vlll. c. il. p. 333—348), who investigates Um state of Um Jews In Arabia and 
ftiiiopla. *" /. a 

(09) Alvarex (in Ramusin, torn. 1. fol. 910, vera. SSI,^ saw the llourfshtng state of Axume In the year 
iSOO— luogo uiolto buona e grande. It was ruined In tiie saaM cmtury by the Turkish Invaaioo.t No 



OF THE ROMAN £MF1R£. 1S3 

on a lofty cbariot* which was drawn by four elephants superbly capariscHiedy 
and surrounded by his nobles and musicians. He was clad in a linen garment 
and cap, holding m his hand two javelins and a light shield ; and alth^h his 
nakedness was iraperfectlT covered, be displayed the barbaric pomp of gold 
chains, collars, and bracelets, richly adorned with pearls and precious stones. 
The ambassador of Justinian kneeled ; the Neeus raised him from the nnound, 
cmbracedNonnosus, kissed the seal, perused the letter, accepted the Roman 
alliance, and blandishing lib weapons, denounced implacable war against the 
worshippers of &n. But the proposal of the silk trade was eluded | and not- 
withstanding the assorances, and perhaps the wishes, of the Abyssiniam, the^ 
hostile menaces evaporated without effect. The Homerites were unwilling to 
abandon their aromatic poves, to explore a sandy desert, and to encounter, 
aAer all their fati^pies, a tormidable nation from whom they had never received 
any ^rsonal injunes. Instead of enlai]^^ his conquests, the king of £thk>pia 
was incapable of defending bis possessions. Abrahab, the slave of a Roman 
merchant of Adulis, assumed the sceptre of the Homerites ; the troops of Africa 
were seduced by the luxury of the climate ; and Justinian solicited the friend- 
ship of the usurper, who honoured, with a slight tribute, the supremacy of his 
prince. After a long series of prosperity, the power of Abrahah*was over- 
thrown before the gates of Mecca; his children were despoiled by ^ Persian 
conqueror ; and the Ethiopians weie finally expelled from the continent of Asia. 
This narrative of obscuro and remote events is not f<Neign to the decline and 
fail of the Roman empire. If a Christian power had been maintained in Ara- 
bia, Mahomet must have been crushed in his cradle, and Abyssinia would have 
prevented a revolution which has chaqged the civil and religious state of the 
worid.(100)t 



CHAPTER XLIIL 

RMHtma cf Miea^RutoraltUai tfUrn GMkU kingdom hy TMon^Lou ami 
rteaotry ojRomt^Fmal conmnui of holy hy Narn^^ExImeticn of the 
OttrogoihM-^Defeat of the FrtaJu a$kd AUmmmr^LaM victory , dugraetj and 
death of Beiifarnu^Duith and eharactmr of Jtuiinianr^Ometf earihqnakes 
and pUtgm. 

Tm review of the nations from the Danube to the ^ile has exposed on 
eveiy side the weakness of the Romans ; and our wonder is reasonably excited 
that they should presume to enlaige an empire, whose ancient limits they were 
incapable of defending- But the wars, the conquests, and the triumphs, of 
Justinian, are the feeble and pernicious efibrts of old age, which exhaust the 
remains of strength, and accelerate the decay of the powers of life. He exulted 
in the glorious act of restoring Africa and Italy to the republic ; but the cala- 
mities which followed the departure of Belisarius betrayed the impotence of 
the conqueror, and accomplished the ruin of those unfortunate countries. 

[A. D. 535-*545r.] From his new acauisitions, Justinian expected that his 
avarice, as well as pride, should be nchly gratified. A rapacious minister of 
the finances closely pursued the footsteps of Belisarius ; and as the old registers 
of tribute had been burned by the Vandals, he indulged his fancy in a fibeial 
cakuUtioo and arbitrary assessment of the wealth of Africa.(l) The increase 

more tbaa om hundred hooMt lemaln ; but the memory of He peet graetnem to praeervcd \ff the renl 
«oroaailon (Ludolph, Hiet. et Ck>mmcot. 1. il. c. 11). 

(100) The revolutions of Yemen In the elzih eeniury moel be eolleeted from Proooptne (Tenle. 1. i. e. 
1B« 90). Theophaoee ByaaL (apud Phou eod. IxllL |>. 80). Su Theophanee (In ChrDoofraph. pw 144, 
115. 188, lao. 906, 907, who b full of strange blundcra), Pooock (Specimen HbL Arab. p. 09. 6S), 
D'HerbefcN (WbUou Orientate, pw 19. 477). and 8ale*B Prelimloary Diaeourie and Koran (o. ISS). 
The ravolt of Abmham to meDU<Mied by Frooopiae ; aodhto (Ul, though clouded with mlraeleai to an 
litolorieal faett 

(1) For the trouMea of AfHea, I neither hare nor desire another guide than Procopltts. whose eye cna- 
lamplated the Image, and whose ear collected the rtpdrts, of the momorabto erenta of hto own timaa 



124 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

of taxes, wliich'were drawn away by a distant sovereign, and a general resutoiK 
tion of the patrimony or crown lands, soon dispellea the intoxication of the 
public joy ; out the emperor was insensible to the modest complaints of the 
people, till he was awakened and alarmed by the clamours of militaiy discon- 
tent. Many of the Roman soldiers had married the widows and daughters of 
the Vandals. As their own, by the double right of conquest and inheritance, 
they claimed the estates which Genseric had assigned to his Tictorious troops. 
They heard with disdkin the cold and selfish representations of their officers, 
that the liberality of Justinian had raised them from a sava^^e or servile con- 
dition ; that they were already enriched by the spoils of Africa, the treasures, 
the slaves, and the moveables, of the vanquished Barbarians ; and that the 
ancient jind lawful patrimony of the emperors would be applied only to the 
support of that government on which their own safety and reward must ulti- 
mately depend. The mutiny was secretly inflamed by a thousand soldiers, 
for the most part Heruli, who had imbibed the doctrines, and were instigated 
by the clergy, of the Arian sect ; and the cause of PfijuiT and rebellion wa» 
sanctified h^ the dispensing powers of fanaticism. TKe Arians deplored the 
ruin of their church, triumphant above a centuiy in Africa ; and they were 
justly provoked by the laws of the conqueror, which interdicted the baptism 
of their children and the exercise of afl religious worship. Of the Vandals 
chosen by Belisarius, the far greater part, in the honours of the Eastern service, 
forgot their country and religion. But a generous band of four hundred obliged 
the mariners, when they were in sight of the isle of Lesbos, to alter their 
course : they touched on Peloponnesus, ran ashore on a desert coast of Africa, 
and boldly erected on mount Aurasius, the standard of independence and revolt. 
While the troops of the province disclaimed the command of their superiors, 
a conspiracy was formed at Carthage aeainst the life of Solomon, who filled 
with honour the place of Belisarius; and the Arians had piously resolved to 
sacrifice the tyrant at the foot of the altar, durine the awful mysteries of the 
festival of Easter. Fear or remorse restrained Uie daggers of the assassins, 
but the patience of Solomon emboldened their discontent, and at the end of ten 
days, a furious sedition was kindled in the Circus, which desolated Africa 
above ten years. The pillase of the city, and the indiscriminate slaughter of 
its inhabitants, were suspended only by darkness, sleep, and intoxicatran : the 
governor, with seven companions, among whom was the historian Procopius, 
escaped to Sicily; two-thirds of the army were involved in the euilt of trea- 
son ; and eight thousand insuigents, assembling in the field of Bulla, elected 
Stoza for their chief, a private soldier, who possessed in a superior degree the 
virtues of a rebel. Under the mask of freedom, his eloquence could 4ead, or- 
at least impel, the passk)ns of his equals. He raised himself to a level witb 
Belisarius, and the nephew of the emperor, by daring to encounter them in the 
field ; and the victorious generals were compelled to acknowledge, that Stoca. 
deserved a purer cause and a more legitimate command. Vanquished in- 
battle, be dexterously employed the arts of negotiation ; a Roman anny was* 
seduced from their allegiance, and the chiefs who bad trusted to his faithless 
promise were murdered by his order in a church of Numidia. When every 
resource, either of force or perfidy, was exhausted, Stoza, with some desperate 
Vandalst retired to the wilds of Mauritania, obtained the daughter of a Bar- 
barian prince, and eluded the pursuit of his enemies, b;^ the report of his death.. 
The personal weight of Belisarius, the rank, the spirit, ana the temper, of 
Germanus, the emperor's nephew, and the vieour and success of the secondr 
administration of the eunuch Solomon, restored the modesty of the camp, and 
maintained for a while the tranquillity of Africa. But the vices of the Byzan^ 
tine court were felt in that distant province ; the troops complained *that they 
were neither paid nor relieved, ana as soon as the puolic disorders were suffi-> 

In th« Mcond book of th« yandaltc war he relates Uie revolt of Stozaa (c. 24— SM), the reium of Be- 
Haarlua (c. 15), tbe victory of Gennanua (c. 16, 17, 16), the second niminitlration of Soloinon (c 
19, 90, 81). the fovemment of Serglus (c. 32, IQ), of Areobindus (c S4), the tyranny and death ofV 
Gontfaarii (c. 35, 96, 97, 38) ; nor can I discern any symptoms of flattery or malevolence Id his various . 
portraiia. 



OF THE ROMAN £MP1K£. m 

cientlv maturey Stosa was again alive, in arms, and at the eates of Cartbafe- 
He fell in a sineie combat, but he smiled in the agonies of death, when he was 
informed that his own javeUn had reached the heart of his antagonist/ The 
example of Stoza, and the assurance that a fortunate soldier had been the first 
king, encouraged the ambition of Gontharis, and he promised, by a private 
trea^, to divide Africa with the Moors, if, with their dangerous aid, be should 
aacend the throne of Carthage. The feeble Areobindus, unskilled in the 
afiyrsofpeace and-war, was raised bj his marriage with the niece of Justinian, 
to the office of £zarch. He was suddenlj oppressed by a sedition of the 
guards, and his abject supplications, which provoked the contempt, could not 
move the pity, ot the inexorable tyrant. Afler a rem of thir^ da^^s, Gon- 
tharis himself was stabbed at a banquet by the hand of Artaban ;tand it is sin- 
gular enough, that an Armenian prince, of the n^al family of Arsaces, should 
re-establish at Carthage the authority of the Roman empire. In the conspiracy 
which unsheathed the dagger of Brutus against the life of Cesar, eveiy ciicum- 
atance is curious and important to the eyes of posterity ; but (he guilt or merit 
of these loyal or rebellious assassins could interest onl;^ the contemporaries of 
Procopius, who by their hopes and fears, their friendship or resentment, were 
personally engaged in the revolutions of Africa. (2) 

[A. D. 643--558.] That country was rapidly sinking into the state of bar- 
barism, from whence it had been raised by Uie rhosnician colonies and iU>man 
laws ; and eveiy step of intestine discord was marked by some deplorable 
victory of savage man over civilized society. The Moors,(3) though ignorant 
of justice, were impatient of oppression ; their vagrant life and boundless wil- 
derness disappointed the arms, and eluded the chains, of a conqueror : and 
experience had shown that neither oaths nor obligations could secure the fidelity 
of their attachment. The victory of Mount Auras had awed them into mo- 
mentary submission; but if they respected the character of Solomon, (hey 
hated and despised the pride and luxury of his two nephews, Cyrus and Ser- 
gius, on whom their uncle had imprudently bestowed the provincial, govem- 
inents of Tripoli and Pentapolis. A Moorish tribe encamped under the walls 
of Leptifl^ to renew their alliance, and to receive from the governor the cus- 
tomaiy gifts. Fourscore of their deputies were introduced as friends into the 
city; but on the dark suspicion of a conspiracy, -they were massacred at the 
table of Seigius ; and the clamour of arms and revenge was re-echoed through 
thevalleys of Mount Atlas, from both the Syrtes to the Atlantic ocean. A per- 
sonal injuiy, the unjust execution or. murder of his brother, rendered Antalus the 
enemy of the Romans. The defeat of the Vandals had formerly signalized his 
valour ; the rudiments of justice and prudence were still more conspicuous in a 
Moor; and while he laid Adrumetum in ashes, he calmly admonished the em- 
peror that the peace of Africa might be secured by the recall of Solomon and 
his unworthy nephews. The exarch led forth his troops from Carthage ; but, 
at the distance of six days' journey, in the neighbourhood of Tebe£te,(4) he 
was astonished by the superior numbers and fierce aspect of the Barbarians. 
He proposed a treaty ; solicited a reconciliation ; and offered to bind hiniseif 
by the most solemn oaths. " By what oaths can he bind hlinsi^lf ?'' intenupted 
the indignant Moors. '' Will he swear by the gospels, the divine b(»ok.s oi ilia 
Christians? It was on those books that the faith of hi.>s nephew Se^^i us was 
pledged to eighty of our innocent and unfortunate brethren. Belb^^ we trust 
them a second time, let us try their efficacy in the chastisement of i)erjury and 

(^ Yet I must not refuse hirn the merit of paintine, in livply colou-s, I'lc nrard-'r • f loivh-.i:^. Oie 
of the aseanins nttered a sentiment not unworthy of a Roninn patrioi . " If 1 !«»!," j-aid Atiaatuy, " i.i 
tbe firtl stroke^ kill me on the spot, lest the rack should exiori a di-covcry «f my i'c.''iiij^»li. --.• 

.(3) The Moorish wars are occasionally introduced into ihe nAiaiivL* of P i>c),»i'i-< i Vh kIiI. T. ii. c. 
ID— C 25. 27, ^ Gothic. 1. Iv. c. 17) ; and Theophanes adda no.nu projiperoua a iil adv ensc «veiiu! i.i rhe 
last years of Justinian. 

(4) Now Tibesh, in the kingdom of Algiers. It la watered bv a rircr, thf P i.;er.vVw'»:c'i C:i I.f iT.o he 
Hejerda (B^gradag). Tibesh isstill remarkable for itswallii •>(' Iti-^o monei) f[\\v mo. (O id»iiMi ui' >{ouio;, 
a fountain, and a grove of walnut-trees: the country is fruitful, aid the nuiK'iboui Iiig reiebcio.- u e war- 
like. It appears from an inscription, that under the rci^n of Adrian, the road from Cailhafc to Tebeste 
was ooialr acted by the tiiiid legioa (Marmoi. OacriptioaU^ 1' Afxique, torn. U. p. 4-13, 443. Shaw's Tra 
Telfl, p.64,05,6S). 



196 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

tbe Tindication of their own honour." Thair honoor wu Tindieated in the 
field of Tebeste, by the death of Solomon, and tbe total loss of his armj/ The 
arrival of fresh troops and more skilful oommandeis, soon checked the insoleooe 
of tbe Moors ; seventeen of their princes were slain in tbe same battle ; and 
the doubtful and transient submission of their tribes was celebrated with lavisb 
applause bj the people of Constantinople. Successive inroads had reduced the 
province ot Africa to one-third of tbe measure of Italy ; yet the Roman en^e- 
rors continued to reign above a century over Carthage, and the fruitful coast of 
tbe Mediterranean. But tbe victories and the losses of Justinian were alike 
pemicioos to mankind ; and such was the desolation of Africa, that in many 
parts a 8tran£;er might wander whole days without meeting the face either of a 
friend or an enemy. Tbe nation of the Vandals had disap[>eared : they once 
amounted to a hundred and sixty thousand warriora, without including the chil- 
dren, the women, or tbe slaves. Their numbers were infinitely surpassed by 
the number of tbe Moorish families extirpated in a relenCleas war : ana the same 
destruction was retaliated on tbe Romans and dieir allies, who perished by the 
climate, their mutual quarrels, and the rage of the Barbarians. When Prooo- 
pius first landed, he admired the populoosness of tbe cities and country, strenu- 
ously exercised in tbe labours of commerce and agriculture. In less than twenty 
years, that busy scene was converted into a silent solitude ; the wealthy citizens 
escaped to Sicily and Constantinople ; and the secret historian has confidently 
affirmed, that five millions of Africans were consumed by the wars and goveni- 
ment of the emperor Justinian.(5) 

[A, D. 640.] Tbe jealousy of the Byzantine court bad eot permitted Beli- 
aanus to achieve the conquest of Italy : and bis abrupt departure revived tlte 
couraee of tbe Goths,(6) who respected his genius, his virtue, and even the 
laudable motive which had ureed the servant of Justinian to deceive and reieot 
them. They bad lost their kiitt", (an inconsiderable loss) theur capital, taek 
treasures, tbe provinces from Sicily to the Alps, and tbe militaiy fi>roe of two 
hundred thousand Barbarians, magnificently equipped with horses and arais. 
Yet all was not lost, as long as ravia was defended by one thousand Goths^ 
inspired by a sense of honour, the love of freedom, and the memory of their 
past greatness. Tbe supreme command was imanimousljr offered to the brave 
Uraias : and it was in bis eyes alone that the disgrace of his uncle Vitiges could 
appear as a reason of exclusion. His voice inclined the election in favour oi 
Hildibald, whose personal merit was recommended by tbe vain bofie that hia 
kinsman Theudes, tbe Spanish monarch, would support the common interest of 
the Gothic nation. The success of his arms in Liguria and Venetia seemed to 
justify their choice ; but he soon declared to the world, that he was incapable 
of foigiving or commanding bis benefactor. Tbe consort of Hildibald was 
deeply wounded by the beauty, the riches, and the pride of the wife of Uraias; 
and the death of that virtuous patriot excited the indignatbn of a free people. 
A bold assassin executed their sentence, by strikkig off the head of Hildibald 
in tbe midst of a banquet : the Rugians, a foreien tribe, assumed the privilege 
of election * and Totila,^the nephew of the late king, was tempted^ by revenge, 
to deliver himself and the garrison of Trevtgo into the hands of the RomaiML 
But the gallant and accomplished youth was easily persuaded to prefer the 
Gdthic throne before the service of Justinian ; and as soon as the palace of 
Pavia bad been purified from tbe Rugian usurper, be reviewed the iiatkmal 
force of five thousand soldiers, and generously undertook the restoiation of the 
kingdom of Italy. 

(A. D. 641 — 544.] The successors of Belisarius, eleven generals of equal 
rank, neglected to crush the feeble and disunited Goths, till they were roined 
to action by the progress of Totila and the reproaches of Justinian. The gates 

(5) Proeoptm, Ancodot. e. 1& The miIm oT Um AfHcan hinory aiMM tUi Melancholr trvth. 

(6) In tiie second (c. 30,) and Uiird books (c 1—40), Ttoeoplm amclmm Um Mritory oT tk« God)t» 
war ftom the flfUi to tbe fifteenth year of Juetlnlaa. At toe events ac» less latei«stlBff than in tb« 
former period, be allots only half the space to doaMe Uie time. Jomandcs, and Um Ohnmlele of Mar- 
oeuinas, allbrd some eoHafSral binii. BIgoataSi Pagl, Muraiori, Maseoo, and Da Bnat, are aai fid, wtA 



OF THE ROMAN £MPIR£. l«7 

•f Verona were jwcfelly opened to Artabazus, at the head of one hundred Per* 
•iant ID the service of the empire. The Goths fled from the citjr. At the dis- 
taaoe of sixty furloi^ the Roman generals baited to regulate the division of the^ 
spoil. While they disputed* the enemj discovered the real number of the 
victors : the Petsians were iostaotly overpowered, and it was by leaping from 
the wall that Ariabazus preserved a life which he lost in a few days by the 
lanoe of a Barbarian, who had defied him to single combat. Twenty thousand 
Romans encoualered the forces of Totila, near Faenza, and on the bills of Mu- 
geJIo, of the FJqrefitioe territoiy. The ardour of freedmen, who fought to 

Xin their country* was opoosed to the languid temper of mercenary troops* 
were even destitute of toe merits of strong and well-disciplined servitude. 
On the first attack th^ abandoiied their ensigns, threw down their anns, and 
dbpersed on all sides* with ao active speed* which abated the loss* while it 
aggravated the shame of their defeat. The kin^ of the Qoths, who h^ushed for 
the baseness of his enemies, pursued with rapid stefw the path of honuji- and 
victory. Totila passed the ro,*tnver8ed the Apennine, suspended the impor* 
tant conquest of Ravenna* Florence* and Rome* and marched throt»[h the heart 
of Ital^* to form the siege* or rather the blockade* of Naples. The Roman 
chiefs* imprisoned in their respective cities, and accusing eacn other of the com* 
mon disgrace* did not presume to disturb his enterprise. But the emperor* 
alarmed by the distress and danger of bis Italian conquests* despatched to the 
relief of Naples a fleet of galleys and a body of Thracian and Armenian sol- 
diers. They landed in Sicily* which yielded its copious stores of provisions ; 
but the delays of the new commander, an unwarlike magistrate, protracted the 
suflferingsof the besieged; and ttie succours which he dropped with a timid 
and tardy hand* were successively intercepted by the armed vessels stationed 
by Totila in the bay of Napies. The principal officer of the Romans was 
dragged* with a rope round his neck* to the foot of the wall, from whence, witb 
a trembliqg voice* ne exhorted the citizens to Implore* like himself* the mercy 
of the conqueror. They requested a truce* with a promise of surrnidering tlie 
ci(y, if no eflectual relief should appear at the end of thirty days. Instead of 
9IM month* the audadoos Barbarian granted them Ikree, in the just confidence 
that famine would anticipate the term of their capitulation. At\er the reduc- 
tion of Naples and Cuomb, the fHovinces of Lucanta, Apulia* and Calabria, sub- 
mitted to the king of the Oolhs. Totila led his army to the gates of Rome* 
pitched his camp at Tibor or Tivoli* within twenty miles of tne capital, and 
calmly exhorted the senate and people to compare the tyranny of the Greeks 
with the blessings of the Gothic reign. 

The rapid success of Totila may Ibe partly ascribed to the revolution which 
three years' experience had produced in the sentiments of the Italians. At the 
command, or at least in the name, of a Catholic em'^ror, the pope,(7) their * 
spiritual fadier* had been torn from the Roman church, and eitner starved or 
murdered on a desolate ]sland.(8) The virtues of Belisarius were replaced by 
the various or uniferm vices of eleven chiefs, at Rome* Ravenna* Florence* 
Pen^aa* Spolet(H ^* who abused their authority for the indulgence of lust or 
ivarice. The improvement of the revenue was committed to Alexander, a 
Mibtle scribe* long practised in the fraud and oppression of the Byzantine 
schools ; and whose name of Psoi^tdum, the saMor9,(9) was drawn from the 
dexterous artifice with which he reduced the size, witnout defacing the figure, 
of the gold ooin. Instead of expecting the restoration of peace and tndustiy, he 
imposed a heavy aaiessment on the fortunes of the Italians. Yet his present or 
fiiture demands were less odious than a prosecution of arbitrary rigour against 

(7) 8yiv«riiia, bWiop of Bona, wm Ifaat traiHported to Patara, in Lyela. and at leagUi atanred (inb 
^onim eiutodiA inedla eoarecuis) ia the We of Palmaria, A. 0. 539. June 90 (Liberal, in Bieviar. c. 22. 
AnMtasiiM, in Sylverlo. Baronlns, A. D. 540, No. 8, & Pagi, in Vlu Pont torn. I p. Sd5, S66). Proca 
yina (Aaecsrioi. c. 1,) af'tmain ftn^ dhe MMpni and Anttwlna. 

(6) Pnlnuiria, a imall ieland, ocmoaite U» Tarraclna and Uie coait of Uie Volici (Cluf er. ItaL Antiq 
LULe. 7,0.134). 

<S; AatM LoMMheie Alexander, and moet of bto civil and miliUry ooHeajraei, were either dlagrued 
or ii M li u i. the tofc of the Aaecdoica (a 4 5 29 j *■ aeaiMljr blacJrer than Uiat of the GotUe Rfflory (1 



ns TH£ D£CL1N£ AND FALL 

the persons and property of al] (hose wbo, under the Gothic kines, had been 
concerned in the receipt and expenditure of the public money. The sulgects 
of Justinian, who escaped these partial vexations, were oppressed by the irre* 
g^ar maintenance of the soldiers^ whom Alexander defrauded and despised * 
and their has^ sallies in quest of wealth, or subsistence, provoked the inhabit 
ants of the country to await or implore their deliverance firom the virtues of a 
Barbarian. Toti(a(10) was chaste and temi)erate ; and none were deceived, 
either friends or enemies, who depended on his faith or his clemency. To the 
husbandmen of Italy the Gothic kii^ issued a welcome proclamation, enjoining^ 
them to pursue their important labours, and to rest assured, that, on the pay* 
jnent of the ordinaiy taxes, they should be defended by his valour and discipline 
from the injuries of war. The strong towns he successively attacked ; and as 
«oon as they had yielded to his arms, he demolished the fortifications, to save 
the peon'^. from the calamities of a future siege, to deprive the Romans of the 
arts of uefence, and to decide the tedious quarrel of the two nations, by an equal 
auU honourable conflict in the field of battle. The Roman captives and de- 
serters were tempted to enlist in the service of a liberal and courteous adver- 
sary : the slaves were attracted by the firm and faithful promise, that they 
should never be delivered to their masters, and from the thousand warriors of 
Pavia, a new people, under the same appellation of Goths, was insensibly 
formed in the camp of Totila. He sincerely accomplished the articles of ca- 
pitulation, without seeking or accepting any sinister advantage from ambiguous 
expressions or unforeseen events : the gamson of Naples had stipulated, that 
they should be transported by sea ; the obstinacy of the winds prevented their 
voyage, but they were generously supplied with horses, provisions, and a safe 
conduct to the gates of Rome. The wives of the senators, who had been sur- 

Erised in the villas of Campania, were restored, without a ransom, to their hus- 
ands ; the violation of female chastity was inexorably chastised with death ; 
and, in the salutary regulation of the diet of the famished Neapolitans, the con- 
queror assumed the office of a humane and attentive physician. The virtues 
of Totila are equally laudable whether they proceeded from true policy, reli-- 
gious principle, or the instinct of humanitv : he often haran^ed his troops ; 
and it was his constant theme, that national vice and ruin are inseparably con- 
nected ; that victory is the fruit of moral as well as military virtue ; and that 
the prince, and even the people, are responsible for the crimes which they 
nedect to punish. 

[A. D. 644 — ^548.] The return of Belisarius to save the country tvhich he 
Lad subdued, was pressed with equal vehemence by his friends and enemies ; 
and the Gothic war was imposed as a trust or an exile on the veteran com- 
mander. A hero on the banks of the Euphrates, a slave in the palace of Con- 
stantinople, he accepted, with reluctance, the painful task of supporting his 
own reputation, and retrieving the faults of his successors. The sea was open 
to the Romans ; the ships and soldiers were assembled at Salona, near the 
palace of Diocletian : he refreshed and reviewed his troops at Pola in Istria, 
coasted round the head of the Hadriatic, entered the port of Ravenna, and 
despatched orders, rather than supplies, to the subordinate cities. His first 
public oration was addressed to the Goths and Romans, in the name of the 
emperor, who had suspended for a while the conquest of Persia, and listened 
to the prayers of his Italian subjects. He gently touched on the causes and the 
authors of the recent disastera ; striving to remove the fear of punishment for 
the past, and the hope of impunity for the future, and labouring, with more 
zeal than success, to unite all the members of his government in a firm league 
of affection and obedience. Justinian, his gracious master, was inclined to 
pardon and reward ; and it was their interest as well as duty, to reclaim their 
deluded brethren, who bad been seduced by the arts of the usurper. Not a 
man was templed to desert the standard of the Gothic king. Belisarius 9oon 

(10) rrocopluf CI. ili. c. 2. B, 8cc.) does unple and wiJlitig juElice to tlie merit of Totila. The Roman 
hiJinriaiis, from Sallust niul Tacitus, were happy to I'urgei tiie vices of tlieir coimlrvmea iu Um conlem < 
plation of barbaric virtue , 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. U9 

^Mxnrend, that he was sent to lemain the idle and impotent spectator of the 
gloiy of a younp Barbarian ; and his own epistle exhibits a genuine and Hyely 
picture of the d»tress of a noble mind. ** Most excellent prince, we are arrived 
in Italy, destitute of all the necessaiy implements of war, men, horses, arms, and 
.money. In our late circuit through the villages of Thrace and lUyricum, we 
ehave ejected, with extreme difficulty, about four thousand recruits, naked and 
unskilled in the use of weapons and the exercises of the camp. The soldiers 
already stationed in the province are discontented, fearful, and dismayed ; at 
-the sound of an enemy, they dismiss their horses, and cast their arms on the 

rind. No taxes can be raised, since Italy is in the hands of the Barbarians ; 
failure of payment has deprived us of the right of command, or even of 
admonition. Be assured, dreaa Sir, that the greater part of your troops have 
already deserted to the Goths. If the war could be achievedfby the presence 
of Befisarius alone, your wishes are satisfied ; Belisarius b in the midst of 
Italy. But if you desire to conquer, far other preparations are requisite; 
without a military force, the title of general is an empty name. It would be 
•expedient to restore to my service my own veterans and domestic guards. 
.Before I can uke the fielcl, I must receive an adequate supply of li^t and 
hezYj armed troops ; and it is only with ready money that you can procure 
the indispensable aid of a powerful body of the cavalry of the Huns."(ll) 
An officer, in whom Belisarius confided, was sent from Ravenna to hasten and 
<»nduct the succours ; but the message was neglected, and the messenger was 
.detained at Constantinople by an advantag[eous marriage. After bis patience 
had been exhausted, by delay and disappointment, the Roman general repassed 
the Hadriatic, and expected at Dyrrachium the arrival of the troops, which 
.were slowly assembled among the subjects and allies of the empire. His 
Mwers were still inadequate to the deliverance of Rome, which was closely 
.besieged by the Gothic Icing. The Appian way, a march of forty days, was 
• covered by the Barbarians ; and as the j^rudence of Belisarius declined a battle, 
he preferred the saf<^ and speedy navigation of five days from the coast of 
£pirus to the mouth of the Tiber. 

[A. D. 646.] AAer reducing, by force or treaty, the towns of inferior note 
in the midland provinces of Italy, Totila proceeaed, not to assault, but to 
encompass and starve, the ancient capital. Rome was afflicted by the avarice, 
-And guarded by the valour, of Bessas, a veteran chief of Gothic extraction, 
who filled with a garrison of three thousand soldiers, the spacious circle of her 
venerable walls. From the distress of the people he extracted a profitable 
trade, and secretly rejoiced in the continuance of the siege. It was for his 
4ise that the granaries had been replenished : the charity of Pope Vigilius had 
purchased ami embarked an ample siq[>ply of Sicilian corn : out the vesseb 
which escaped the Barbarians were seized by a rapacious governor, who 
.imparted a scanty sustenance to the soldiers, and sold the remainder to the 
wealthy Romans. The medimnus, or fiflh part of the quarter of wheat, was 
exchanged ibr seven pieces of gold ; fifty pieces were given for an ox, a rare 
and accidental prize ; the progress of famine enhanced this exorbitant value, 
and the mercenaries were tempted to deprive themselves of the allowance 
which was scarcely sufficient for the support of life. A tasteless and unwhole- 
.aome mixture, in which the bran thrice exceeded the quantity of flour, appeased 
the hunger of the poor ; they were gradually reduced to feed on dead horses, 
dop, cats, and mice, and eagerly to snatch the grass, and even the nettles 
wKch grew among the ruins of the ci^. A crowd of sj^ctres, pale and ema- 
ciated, their bodies oppressed with disease, and their minds with despair, sur- 
rounded the palace ol the governor, uiged, with unavailing truth, that it was 
ihe duty of a master to maintain his slaves, and humbly requested, that he 
would provide for their subsistence, permit their flight, or command their 
immediate execution. Bessas replied, with unfeeling tranquillity, that it was 

(11) Proeoplat, L iii: c 19. The ■ool of a hero is deeply impniMd on the letter; nor can we con 
fiMnd eueh temdne and original u» with the elaborate and oOen empty ipeedief of Um Byiantinf 
lileloilanii 

Toi. m.-ii: 



ISO THE DECLINE AND FALL 

impooible to feed, unsafe to dismiss, and unlawful to kill, tbe subjects of Ihr 
cmperon Yet tbe example of a private citizen mig^bt have shown bn couiitiy«ei» 
that a tyrant cannot withbold the privilegre of death. Pierced by the cries of 
five children, who vainly called on then* father for bread, he ordered them tax 
follow his steps, advanced with calm and silent despair to one of &e biMJges 
of die Tiber, and, covering his lace, threw himself beadlonff into the stream, 
in the presence of bis family and the Roman people. To the rich ajid pusU^ 
lanimous, Bes6as(12) sold the permission of departure ; but tbe neater part of 
the fugitives expired on the pubKc highways, or were kilercepted by die iying 
parties of Barbarians. In tbe meanwbtle, tbe artful governor soothed the dis- 
oontent, and revived the hopes, of the Romans, hr the vague reports of the 
fleets and armies which were bastenine to their reFief from the extremities of 
tbe East. They derived more rational comfort from tbe assumwe that Beli>^ 
sarius bad landed at the port ; and, without numbering bis fovces, they firmly 
relied on the humamhr, the coiira|;e, and the skill of tMir great deliverer. 

The foresight of Totila had raised obstacles worthy of sudi ao antacoaift.. 
Nmety ftvlongs belo%v tbe city, in tbe nanowest part of tbe riv«r, be joined 
die two banks by strong and solid timbers in the fbna of a bridge f on wfaicb 
be erected two lofty towers, manned by tbe bravest of his Goths, and profusely 
stored with missile weapons and engines of offence. Tbe appraacb of the 
bridge and towers was covered by a strong and masvf cfaaio of^Mon ; and tbe- 
chain at either end, oo the opposite sides of the Tiber, wis defeoded hj 9^ 
numerous and chosen detachment of archera. But tbe eKiMprise of hnrng 
these barriers, and relievinr the capital, di^ays a sbiniog cxaapAe of tlie 
boldness and tbe conduct ofBelisarius. His cavaliy advanoed from tbe port 
along tbe pttbTIc road, to awe tbe motions, and distrad tbe attention, of^tW 
enemy. His infantry and provisione were distributed in two hundred laige 
boats ; and each boat was snielded by a high rampart of thick planks, pietccd 
with many small boles for tbe discharge of missile weapons. In tbe fn»t, two 
laige vessels were Knked together to anstaki a floating castle, wbicb eooHDianded 
the towers of the bridge, auiid contained a ma|pizine of fire, sulpbor, and bitu- 
men. Tbe whole fleet, which tbe general led m person, was laboriously moved 
against the current of the river. The chain yielded to their weight, and tbe 
enemies who euarded the banks, were either slain or scattered. As soon as 
they touched the principal barrier, tbe firesbip was instaotly grappled to thfr 
bridge ; one of the toweis, with two bundrea Gotbs, was consumed by tbe 
flames : the assailants shouted victory ; ttd Rome was saved, if tbe wisdEom of 
Belisarius bad not been defeated by tiie misoondiict of his officers. He iiad 
previously sent orders to Bessas to second bis operations by a tinie^ saUj fimn 
the town ; and he had fixed bis lieutenant, Isaac, by a peremptoiy conwnand, 
to tbe station of the port. But ayarice renderea Wssas immoveable y while 
the youthful ardour of Isaac delivered him into tiie bands of a superior enemy. 
The exaggerated rumour of his defeat Was hastily carried to die ears of Beli- 
sarius : he paused ; betrayed in that single moment of bis Itfe some emotions 
of surprise and perplexity ; and reluctanfly sounded a retreat to savie bis wife 
Antonma, his treasures, and the oi^ haibour which he possessed on the Tuseafr 
coast. The vexation of his mind produced an ardent and abnesft mortal fiBver ;. 
and Rome was left without protection to the mercy or indigiiati«n of Totila. 
The contrauance of hostilities had imbittered tbe natkmal hatred, die Arian 
cleigy was ignomtniousTy driven from Rome; Pelagius, tiie aichdeaoon, 
returned without success irom an embassy to tbe Gothic camp ; and a Sicilian 
bishop, the envoy or nuncio of the pope, was deprived of both bis bands, for 
daring to utter falsehoods in tbe service of the cbiireh and state* 

[A. D. 54e.] Famine bad relaxed tbe strength and discipline of tiie garrison 



itS^ The BTVioe of Beuai ii not divembM by Procoplui (I. Ul. e. 17. 90). Be czplatvl tbe Iom of 

. ^^ .... _.-^ ^ ^ Petnea (Goth. I. Iv. c IS): but tbe nme ▼tees followed Idm from tbe 

' MriisiaiddtfceliofblielmMler Tbe 

linflicteAQnibeofpMMrof RoMfIt 

move ■greeable to Jueiice than to blstoty. 



\iMf X ao ifiv«ricc ut Mfvammm m noi uuptuipwu ny rrocopiua \t. 

Some by tbe iloriouf conqueM of Petrea (Goth. 1. iv. c IS) : bui 
Tiber to the Pnuli (c. 13) ; and tbe hielorlaii iec«|uailirtnietotbe ■ 
chaittoement which the author of the ronanee of JSelfe eifv bat 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. m 

«t Rome. They could derive no efiectual service from a dyii^ people ; and 
the inhuman avarice of the merchant at leneth absorbed the vigilance of the 
govemor. Four Isaurian sentinels, while tbeir companions slept, and then 
ofliceis were absent, descended b^ a rope from the wsill, and secretly proposed 
to the Gk>thic kine to introduce his troops into the city. The offer was enters 
tained with coloness and suspicion ; they retumea in safety ; they twice 
repeated tbeir visit ; the place was twice examined ; the conspiracy was known 
and disr^^parded ; and no sooner had Totila consented to tne attempt, than 
tbey unbarred the Asinarian ^ate, and gave admittance to the Goths. Till the 
dawn of day, they halted m order of battle, apprehensive of treachery or 
ambosb ; but the troops of Bessas, with their leader, had already escaped ; and 
when the kine was pressed to disturb tbeir retreat, he prudently rejj^ied. that 
no sight could be more grateful than that of a flyir^ enemy. The ratncians 
who were still possessed of horses, Decius, fiasihus, &c. accompanied the 
governor ; their brethren, among whom Olybrius, Orestes, and Maximus, are 
named by the historian, took refuge in the church of St. Peter ; but the assertion 
that onhr five hundred penons remained in the capital, inspires some doubt of 
the fidelity either of his narrative or of his text. As soon as dayli^t had 
di^layed the endre victory of the Goths, their monarch devoutly visited the 
tomb of the prince of the apostles ; but while be prayed at the altar, twenty- 
five soldiers, and sixty citisens, were put to the sword, in the vestibule of tne 
temple. The arcbdeacoo Pelagius(]3) stood before him with the f^ospels in 
his band. ^O Lord, be merciful to your servant." ** Pelagius," said Totila, 
with an MHuhnig smfle, ** your pride now condescends to become a suppliant." 
** 1 am a suppliant," replied the pradent archdeacon ; '^God has now made us 
your suUecta, and as your subjects, we are entitled to your clemency." At 
bis hufflUe pnyer, the lives of the Romans were spared ; and the chastity of 
the maids and matrons was preserved inviolate from the passions of the hungry 
soldiers. But they were rewarded by the freedom of piUa|?e, after the most 
precious qpoiis haa been reserved for the royal treasaiy. Tne houses of the 
senatoR were plentifully stored with gold and silver ; and the avarice of Bessas 
bad laboared with so much guilt and shame ibr the benefit of the conqueror. 
In this revdution, &e sons aiKl daughters of Roman consuls tasted the misery 
whkb tbey had spumed or relieved, wandered in tattered nrments throi^ the 
streets of the ci^, and begged thejr bread, periiaps without success, before 
the rates of Ifheir hereditary mansions. The riches of Rusticiana, the daughter 
of Symmacbus and widow of Boethius, had been generously devoted to 
alleviate the calamities of famine. But the Barbarians were exasperated by 
the reporty that she had prompted the people to overthrow the statues of the 
mat Theodoric ; and the life of that venerable matron would have been sacri- 
ficed to his memory, if Totila had not respected her birth, her virtues, and even 
the pious motive of her revenge. The next day he pronounced two orations^ 
to congratulate and admonish his victorious Goths, and to reproach the senate^ 
as the vilest of slaves, with their perjury, folly, and ingratitude; sternly 
declaring, that their estates and honours were justly forfeited to the companions 
of his arms. Tet he consented to fore^ive their revolt, and the senators repaid 
his clemency by despatching circular letters to their tenants and vassals in the 
provinces of Italj, strictly to enjoin them to desert the standard of the Greeks, 
to cultivate their lands m peace, and to learn from their masters the duty o| 
obedience to a Gothic sovereign. Against the city which had so long delsyed 
the course of his victories he appeared inexorable : one-third of the walls, in 
different parts, were demolished by bis command ; fire and engines prepared 
to consume or subvert the most stately works of antiquity ; and the worid was 
astonished by tlie fatal decree, that Rome ^uld be changed Into a pasture ibr 

1 13) Darlns tlie lone exile, and after tiM death of yiclUaa, the Romaii drareh was fvvMMd, at im hf 
me aieMeaeen, ajid at leofUi (A. D. 595), by the pope Pelftgiua, who waa not thoufM gnlMaMor the 
mthiio^ of hb predeeeaaor. See the orlfioal Uvea of the popea under the name of Anaataahia (Mar*- 
tori. Script. £er. lialieaniiu, torn. SiL P. 1. p. 130, 131), who relaiea aaveral oiriooa ineMoattof Ike depa 
•r KoBM and the wan of Italy. 



139 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

cattle. The finn and temperate remonstrance of Belisarius suspended tbe exe 
cutjon ; he warned the Barbarian not to sully his fame by the destnictioii of 
(hose monuments which were the gloiy ol the dead, aiid the delight of the 
living ; and Totila was persuaded by the advice of an enemy, to preserve . 
. Rome as the ornament of his kingdom, or the fairest pledge of peace and 
reconciliation. When he had signified to the ambassadors of Befisarius, his 
intention of sparing the city, be stationed an army at the distance of one 
hundred and twenty furloitfs, to observe the motions of the Roman general. 
With the remainder of his forces, he marched into Lucania and Apulia, and 
occupied on the summit of Mount 6aii^anus,(14) one of the camps of Hanni- 
bal. (15) The senators were dra{;]g;ed in his train, and afierwara confined in 
the tortresses of Campania : the citizens, with their wives and children, were 
dispersed in exile ; and during forty days Rome was abandoned to desolate and 
dreary solitude.(l6^ 

[A. D. 647.1 The loss of Rome was speedily retrieved by an action, to 
which, according to the event, the public opinion would apply the names of 
rashness or heroism. Afler the departure of Totila, the Roman eeneral sallied 
from the port at the bead of a thousand horse, cut in pieces the enemy who 
opposed his progress, and visited with pity and reverence the vacant space of 
the eternal city. Resolved to maintain a station so conspicuous in the eyes of 
mankind, he summoned the greatest part of his troops to the standard which 
lie erected on the Capitol : the old inhabitants were recalled by tbe love of 
their country and tbe hopes of food ; and the keys of Rome were sent a second 
4ime, to the emperor Justinian. The walls, as far they had been demolished 
by the Goths, w^re repaired with rude and dissimilar materials ; the ditch was 
restored ; iron spikes(l7) were proAisely scattered in tbe highways to annoy 
the feet of the horses ; and as new gates could not suddenly be procured, the 
entrance was guarded by a Spartan rampart of his bravest soldiers. At the 
expiration of twenty-five days, Totila returned by hasty marches from Apulia, 
to avenge the injury and disgrace. Belisarius expected his approach. The 
Goths were thrice repulsed in three general assaults ; they lost the flower of 
their troops ; the royal standard had almost fallen into the hands of the enemy, 
and the fame of Totila sunk, as it had risen, with the fortune of his aims 
Whatever skill and courage could achieve, had been performed by the Roman 
general : it remained only, that Justinian should terminate^ by a strong and 
reasonable effort, the war which he had ambitiously undertaken. The indo- 
jence, perhaps the impotence, of a prince who despised his enemies, and envied 
liis servants, protracted the calamities of Italy. After a long silence, Belisarius 
was commanded to leave a sufficient garrison at Rome, and to transport himself 
into the province of Lucania, whose inhabitants, inflamed by Catholic zeal, had 
cast away the yoke of their Arian conquerors. In this ignoble warfare, the 
]l«ro« invincible against the power of the Barbarians, was basely vanauished by 
vthe oelay, the disobedience, and the cowardice of his own officers. He reposed 
Un.his wmter-quarters of Crotona, in the full assurance, that the two passes of 
tthe Lucanian hills were guarded hj his cavaliy. They were betrayed by 
treachery or weakness : and the rapid march of the Goths scarcely allowed 
time for the escape of Belisarius to the coast of Sicily. At leiigth a fleet mmI 

<14^, Mcmnt Gtfnniit, itow ttonte St Aoieto, in the kintdom of Kaplet, roiM three bnndred rtftdla 

clei, and cboicti of Si. lAkliaeL the axeliMiiel. Hormco. « naUve of Aputt* or Lacania, had seen Uie 
rtMMdoabVf GMann^^ north wind Uiat Mew oo that loftjootR 
(Oarm. U. 9. Eiitat ll. 1. 901). . « 

(15) IcaBDoCMMrtalatiMsartteDlar camp of Hannibal; but the Punic quuten ware tons aaioOMi 
la the' neighbottrhood of Arplfr. Llv. xxU. 9. 12, xjdv.3, fcc). .v«-i«««. mr «mii«. 

(1«) Totila. Bomani Ingreditur. ac evettit maroe domos aUquantaa !«"< <»°ibarenii, ««<»"»« 

Komanorumrei in prsdam accepm hoa ipaos Romanot in Campaniam capilToa abduxlt. P^fl»»2;*2- 
Taatationeni,zl ant ampUoa dii, Roma ftiU Ha deeolata, ut nemo ibl hominum, nSil {wMml) beatte 
moraraatar (MafoelUn. in Chron. p. 54). ..... ^ .w^ .u -^ .- ^ 

a?) The lri*«K are tmallenalnea with ftrar aptkea, one fixed ^ .^^e ground, the three^i^ereejw 
•dke^e (Proeopioa, OoUdc. iTllLc: M, Juat. Lipaloa, Po^wte «», L ▼. c 3). The metaphor waa bar 
eowed flwa thTttiball iUmirt^ttraft)^ an herb with a prickly frait common la Italy (Mardo, ad YlifU 
" I. ISa, rol. it p. 3?). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE.' i» 

anny were assembled for the relief of Ruscianum, or RossaD0,(l8) a fortress 
sixty fiirlor^ from the ruins of Sybaris, where the nobles of Lucania bad taken^ 
refuge. In the 6r5t attempt the Roman forces were dissipated by a storm. In 
the second they approached the shore ; but they saw the hills covered witti 
archers, the landing-place defended by a line of spears, and the king of the 6oth» 
impatient for battle. The conqueror of Italy retired with a sigh, and continued, 
to languish, inglorious and inactive, till Antonina, who bad been sent to Con* 
stantinople to solicit succours, obtained, after the death of the empress, the per 
mission of his return. 

[A. D. 548.] The five last campaigns of Belisarius might abate the envy of 
his competitors, whose eyes had been dazzled and wounded by the blaze of his^ 
former j^lory. Instead of delivering Italy from the Goths, he had wandered 
like a f^tive alone the coast, without darine to march into the countiy, or to- 
accept the bold and refieated challenge of l^tila. Fet in the judgment of the 
few who could discriminate counsels from events, and compare the instruments 
with the execution, he appeared a more consummate master of the art of war, 
than in the season of his prosperity, when he presented two captive kings ■ 
before the throne of Justinian. The valour of Belisarius was not chilled by 
a^ ; his prudence was matured by experience, but the moral virtues of huma- 
nity and justice seem to have yielded to the hard necessity of the times. The 
parsimony or poverty of tbje Emperor compelled him to deviate from the rule 
of conduct which had deserved the love and confidence of the Italians. The 
war was maintained by the oppression of Ravenna, Sicily, and all the faithful 
subjects of the empire; and the rigorous prosecution of Herodian provoked 
that injured or guilty officer to deliver Spoleto into the hands of the enemy 
The avarice of Antonina, which had been sometimes diverted by love, now 
reigned without a rival in her breast. Belisarius himself bad always understood 
that riches in a corrupt ase are the support and ornament of personal merit 
And it cannot be presumed that he shoula stain his honour for the public service 
without applying a part of the spoil to his private emolument. The hero had 
escaped the sword of the Barbanans, but the dagger of conspiracy (19) awaited 
his return. In the midst of wealth and honours, Artaban, who had chastised the 
African tyrant, complained of the in^titude of courts. He aspired to Prae- 
jecta, the emperors niece, who wished to reward her deliverer : but the 
impediment of his previous marriage was asserted by the piety of Theodora. 
The pride of royal descent was irritated by flattery ; and the service in which, 
he gloried, had proved him capable of bold and sanguinary deeds. ^ The deatb 
of Justinian was resolved, but the conspirators delayed the execution till they 
could surprise Belisarius disarmed, and naked, in the palace of Constantinople* 
Not a hope could be entertained of shakii« his lone-tried fidelity ; and they 
justly dreaded the revenge, or rather justice, of the veteran general, who 
might speedily assemble an army in Thrace to punish the assassins, and perhaps 
to enjoy the fruits of their crime. Delay aflbrded time for rash communications 
and honest confessions : Artaban and his accomplices were condemned by the 
senate, but the extreme clemency of Justinian detained them in the gentle con- 
finement of the palace, till he pardoned their flagitious attempt against his 
throne and life. If the emperor forgave his enemies, he must coraially embrace 
a friend whose victories were alone remembered, and who was endeared to his 
prince by tne recent circumstance of their common danger. Belisarius reposed 
m>m his toils, in the high station of general of the East and count of the domes- 
tics ; and the older consuls and patricians respectfully yielded the precedency 
of rank to the peeriess merit oi the first of the Romans.(20) The first of the 

(18) Biuda/tiie MDiile TkuHorum. wu transferred to the distance of sizttr stadia to Ruscianum, 
Sossano, an archbishopric without suffragans. The republic of Sybaris is now tJie esute of the Duke of 
Oorigliano (Beidesel, Travelsjnto Magna tSnecia and Sicily, p 107—171). 

m This conspiracy is related by Procopius (Gothic. 1. ill. c. 31, 38), with such freedom and candour, 
that the liberty of the Anecdotes gives hire notiiing to add. 

(90) The honours of Belimrius are gladly commemorated by his socretary (Procop. Goth. 1. iii. e 3S.. 
I. iv. c 91). The title of XTparriYos is ill translated, at least in this instance, by prttfectus pratorio ; awl 
10 a military eharaaer, magister militum is m )re proper and applicable (Ducange, Gobs. Grace, p. 145^ 



134 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

* 
Romians stil submitted to be the slave of his wife : but the servitude ot habit 
aod affection became l^ss disgraceful when the death of Theodora had removed 
the baser influence of fear. Joannina their daughter, and the sole heiress oi 
tksir fortunes, was betsothed to Anastasius the mndson, or rather the ne])hew, 
of the empress,(Sl) whose kind mterposition Torwarded the consummation of 
their youthful loves. But the power of Theodora expired, the parents of Joaur 
nina returned, and her honour, perhaps her happiness, were sacrificed to the 
revei»e of an unfeeling mother, who dissolved the imperfect nuptials before 
they bad been ratified by the ceremonies of the church. (^22) 

[A. D. 649.] Before the departure of Belisarius, Perusia was besieged, and 
few cities were impregnable to the Gothic arms. Ravenna, Ancona, and Cro- 
tooa, still resisted the Barbarians ; and when Totila asked in marriage one of 
the daughters of France^ he was stung by the just reproach, that the king of 
Italy was unworthy of his title till it was acknowledged by the Roman people. 
Three thousand of the bravest soldiers had been left to defend the capital. On 
the suspicion of a monopoly, they massacred the governor, and announced to 
Justinian, by a deputation of the cleigy, that unless their offence was pardoned, 
and their arrears were satisfied, they snould instantly accept the temptiqg offers 
of Totila. But the officer who succeeded to the command (his name was Dio- 
genes) deserved their esteem and confidence \ and the Goths, instead of fiodinig 
an easy conquest, encountered a vigorous resistance from the soldiers and peo- 
ple, who patiendy endured the loss of the port, and of all mantime supjplJes 
The siege of Rome would perhaps have been raised if the liberality of Totila 
to the Isaurians had not enooumged some of their venal countrymen to copy the 
example of treason. In a dark night, while the Gothic trumpets sounded on 
another side, they silentljr opened the gate of St. Paul : the Barbarians rushed 
into the city ; and the flying garrison was intercepted before they could reach 
the harbour of Centumcellae. . A soldier trained in the school of Belisarius, Paul 
of Cilicia, retired with four hundred men to the mole of Hadrian. They re« 
pelled the Goths; but they feh the approach of famine : and their aversion to 
the taste of horse-flesh confirmed their resolution to risk the event of a desperate 
and decisive sally. But their spirit insensibly stooped to the offers of capitu- 
lation : they retrieved their arrears of pay, and preserved their arms and horsesv 
by enlisting in the service of Totila ; their chiefs, who pleaded a laudable attach- 
ment to their wives and dbildren in the East, were dismissed with honour ; and 
above four hundred enemies, who had taken refuge in the sanctuaries, were 
saved by the clemency of the victor. He no longer entertained a wish of de- 
stroying the edifices of Rome,(23) which he now respected as the seat of the 
(rotnic^inf dom : the senate and people were restored to their country ; the 
means of subsistence were liberally provided ; and Totila, in the robe of peace, 
exhibited the equestrian games of the circus. While he amused the e^res of the 
multitude, four hundred vessels were prepared for the embarkation of his trocos. 
The cities of Rhegium and Tareutum were reduced : he passed into Siciiy, 
the object of his implacable resentment ; and the island was stripped of its gold 
and silver, of the fruits of the earth, and of an infinite number ofborses, sheep, 
and oxen. Sardinia and Corsica obeyed the fortune of Italy * and the sea-coast 

rn) AlemanDM (»d Hlit. Arcamm, p. SB), Dueuge (Familie Bysaiit p. 96). and H«liieccitts (Hist 
Juru Chilis, p. 434), aU tiiree repreMnt Anastasiiu aa Uie son of Uie daughter of Theodora ; and their 
opinion firmlv ropoMs on Uie anambicuoui lesdnxmy of Proeopiot (Anecdoi. c 4, S—BvYarptiv twiee 
repeated). And yet I wffl remark, I. That, la the year 547, Theodom eouM learoely have a grandaon of 
tira age of pdbetty ; 8. That we are totaUy ignorant of Uile daughter and her huaband ; and, 3. That Theo- 
dora concealed her b M laid i ^ and that her grandson by Juatuuan would have been heir-apparent of the 
empire. 

(SS) The aimfnifuiTaf at ilna, of the hero hi Italy and after hit retara, are manlfeetad airapoxaXrvvwr. 
and most probably sweOed, by the author of the Anecdoies (c. 4, 5). The deslgnB of Antonina were 
Aivoured by the fluctuating Juriaprudence of Justinian. On the law of marriage and divorce, that em- 
peror was trocho venaUlior (Heinecdus, Element. Juris Civil, ad Ordinem Pandect. P. hr. No. 93S). 

(33) The Romans were sUlI attached to the monuments of their ancestors ; and according to Pio- 
«npiiis (Goth. 1. iv. c. «), Uie galley of Aneas, of a single rank of oara, 95 feet in breadth, 190 in length, 
was preserved entire in the Havo/te, near Monte Tralaceo, at the foot of the Aventlne (Nardini, Roma 
Arnica, I. vii c 9, p. 46C. Donatus, Roma Antiqna, 1. Iv. c. 13, p. 334.) But all antiquity is ignorant ol 
4lds relic 



OF TKE ROMAN EMPIRE. IS5 

•t Greece was visited hj a fleet of three hundred ffal]eys.(34) The Groths 
ivere landed in Corcyra and the an<^t)t continent of Gpinis ; they advanced as 
iur as Nicopolis, the trophy of Auffustus» and Dodona,(25) once famous by tHe 
xnncle of Jove. In every step of bis victories^ the wise Barbarian repeated to 
Justinian his desire ofpeace, applauded the concord of their predecessor!, and 
offered to employ the Gothic arms in the service of the empire. 

[A. D. 549—661.] Justinian was deaf to the voice of peace ; but he ne- 
glected the prosecution of war : and the indolence of his temper .disappointed, in 
some deg^ree, the obstinacy of his passions. From this salutair slumber the 
-emperor was awakened by the pope Vieilius and the patrician Cetbegusy who 
•appeared before his thione^ and aqjured him, in the name of God and the peo« 
'ple, to resume the conquest and the deliverance of Italy. In the choice ot the 

generals, caprice, as well as judgment, was shown. A fleet and army sailed 
r the relief of Sicily, under the conduct of Liberius ; but his youth*and want 
of experience were afterward discovered, and before he touched the sbcwes of 
the island he was overtaken by his successor. In the place of Liberius the 
conspirator Artaban was raised from a prison to military honours ; in the pious 

f resumption, that gratitude would animate his vak>ur and fortify his allegiance, 
ielisaritts reposed in the shade of his laurels, but the command of the principal 
aniiy was reserved for Germanus,(36 ) the emperor's nephew, whos^ rank and 
merit bad been lon^ depressed by the jealoufff of the court. Theodora had 
injured him in the rights of a private citizen, the marriage of his children, and 
the testament of bis brother ; and although his conduct was pure and blameleaSp 
Justinian was displeased that he shouUf be thought worthy of the confidence ot 
the malecontents. The life of Germanus was a lesson of implicit obedience 
he nobly refused to prostitute his name and character in the factions of the 
•ciroos : the gravity ot his manners was tempered by innocent cheerfulness ; and 
his riches were lent without interest to indigent or deserving friends. His 
valour had formerly triumphed over the Sclavonians of the Danube and the 
Tebels of Africa : the first report of his promotion revived the hopes of the Ita* 
lians^ and he was privately assured, that a crowd of Roman deserters would 
4ibaaaon, on his approach, the standard of Totila. His second marriage with 
Malasontha, the c^randdaugbter of Theodbric, endeared Germanus to the Goths 
iberoselves ; and they marohed with reluctance against the father of a royal 
infant, the last ofl&pnng of the line of Amali.(27^ A splendid albwance was 
assigned by the emperor : the general contributed his private fortune ; his two 
-sons were popalar and active ; and be surpassed, in tne promptitude and suc- 
cess of his levies, the ez|)ectation of mankind. He was permitted to select 
some squadrons of Thracian cavalry : the veterans, as well as the youth of 
Constantinople and Europe, engag>ed their volontanr service ; and as far as the 
heart of Germany, his fame and fibeiality attracted the aid of the Barbarians.^ 
The Romans advanced to Sardica ; an army of Sclavonians fled befote their 
march; but within two days of their final departure^ the designs of Germanus 
were termkiated by his malady and death. Yet the impulse which he had 
given to the Italian war still continued to act with eneigy and effect. The 
maritime towns, Ancona, Crotona, CentumceBs, resisted i& assaults of Totila. 
'Sicily was reduced by the aseal of Artaban, and the Gothic navy was defeated 
-near the coast of the Hadriatic. The two fleets were almost equal, forty-seven 
. to fifty galleys ; the victory was decided by the knowledge and dexterity of 

(M) In tiieM MM, Proeopius raarchcd wlUioiit mcetm for tiM Irie of Ca}ypw>. He w« sbowa, ai 
Pbeacia, or Corcyra, tbe petrified ablp of UI^mm (OdyM. xiil. 163) ; but be found it a recent fobric of 
many atonea, dedicated by a mertthBOA to JoplterOaaitus (!.!▼.«. flS). BuaUtliliia bad auppoaad k to ba 
itae fknelfUl iikeneaa of a rock. 

CiS) M. d'AnvUie (Memolrea de PAcad. torn. nxU. p. 513-^838,) llliatratea Um gulf of Ambracia; 
bat be cannot aieertainUieaituatlon of Dodona. A oouatry In Ibe algbt of Italy to leaa known than tba 
wsldflofAiDerloa.t 

(96) See tbe acts of Germanus In Uie public (Vandal. 1. il. c. 16, 17 18. GoUi. I. HI. c 31, 3S,) and 
private history ( Aneedot. e. 5), and Uiose of hto son Justin, in AgaUilaa (1. iv. p. 130L 131). NoUiwitii 
ataadiag an amMgunus ezpnsslon of Jomandes, Ihttrl suo, AlemaDnoa baa proved tnat be waa tbe aos 
of the emperor's brother. 

C>7) Oon|nncia Aniciorum Mfm earn AmalA sUrpe spero adbnc utrlusqne generto promlttlt 'Jomaiidei^ 
■«. 60, p. 76^. Ue wrote at Ravenna before tbe death of Totila. 



136 THE DECLINE aND FALL 

the Greeks ; but the ships were so closely grappled, that only tweWe of toe 
Goths escaped from this unfortunate conflRt. Tney affected to depreciate an- 
element in which they were unskilled, but their own experience confirmed the 
.ruth of a maxim, that the master of the sea will always acquire the dominioi^ 
of the Iand.(ie8) 

[A. D. 652.] Afler the loss of Germaous, the nations were provoked to^ 
smile, by the strange intelligence that the command of the Roman armies was 

fiven to a eunucn. Rut the eunuch Nar8es(29) is ranked amoi^ the few whc 
ave rescued that unoaopy name from the contenipt and hatrecf of mankind. ' 
A feeble diminutive body concealed the soul of a statesman and a warrior. 
His youth had been employed in the management of the loom and distaff, in- 
the cares of the household, and the service of female luxuiy ; but while hia 
nands were busy, he secretly exercised the faculties of a vigorous and disceming: 
mind. A stranger to the schools and the camp, he studied in the palace to < 
dissemble, to flatter, and to persuade ; and as soon as he approached tne person - 
of the emperor, Justinian listened with surprise and pleasure to the manly 
counsels of his chamberlain and private treasurer.(30) The talents of Narses 
were tried and improved in frequent embassies : he led an army into Italy,, 
acquired a practical knowledge of the war and the country, and presumed to 
stiive with the genius of Belisarius. Twelve years after his return, the eunucln 
was chosen to achieve the conquest which had been left imperfect by the first' 
of the Roman generals. Instead of being dazzled by vani^ or emulation, he 
seriously declared, that unless he were armed with an adequate force, he would< 
never consent to risk his own gloir, and that of his sovereign. Justinian granted . 
to the favourite, what he might nave denied to the hero : the Gothic war was- 
rekindled from its ashes, and the preparations werp not unworthy of Uie ancient 
majesty of the empire. The kej^ otthe public treasure was put into hb hand^ 
to collect magazines, to levy soldiers, to purchase arms and horses, to discharge 
the arrears of pay, and to tempt the fidelity of the fus^itives and deserters. 
The troops of Germanus were still in aims ; they halted at Salona in the* 
expectation of a new leader ; and legpons of subjects and allies were created 
by the well-known liberality of the eunuch Nanes. The king of the Lorn- 
bards(31) satisfied or surpassed the obligations of a treaty, by lending two 
thousand two hundred of his bravest warriors,* who were followed by three- 
thousand of their martial attendants. Three thousand Henili fought on horse- 
back under Philemuth, their native chief; and the noble Aratus, who adopted 
the manners and discipline of Rome, conducted a band of veterans of the same- 
nation. Dagistheus was released from prison to command the Huns; and 
Kobad, the grandson and nephew of the ^at king, was conspicuous by the 
regal tiara at the head of his faithfiil Persians, who bad devoted themselves to 
the fortunes of their prince.(32) Absolute in the exercise of his authority,, 
more absolute in the affection of his troops, Narses led a numerous and gallant 
army from Philippolis to Salona, from whence he coasted the eastern side ol 
the Hadriatic as tar as the confines of Italy. His progress was chedced. The 
East could not supply vessels capable of transporting such multitudes of men 
and horses. The Franks, who, in the general confusion, had usurped the greater 
part of the Venetian province, refused a free passage to the friends of th^ 

(S8) The Uitrd book of Proooplin to terminated by the deatii of Gennanufl (Add. I. It. c. 93, 94, 85, S6). 

(90) Procopia* relates the whole seriee of thb second Gothic war and the victory of Narses (I. iv. c. 81. 
95--35). A splendid scene! Amonf the six subjects of epic poe&y which Taaso revolved In hie 
mfaid, he hesitated between the eoDqaesta of Italy by Belisarius and by Nanes (Hayley*s Works, 
▼oU iv. p. 70). 

(30) Tlie country of Narses is unknown, since ho must not be confounded with the Pefsaimeniaa*- 
Procopins styles him (Goth. I. ii. c. 13,) fianXtKw vMiiarwv rofuaf, Paul Wamefrid (i. It- c 3, p. 778,) 
Chartuiarius; Mareelllnus adds the name of Cubiculailus. In an inscription on the Balarian bridge, he 
Is enUtied Ex-consul, Ez-prcpositus, Cubieuli Patricius (Mascon, Hist, of the Germans, 1. ziiL c. 95.) Tho- 
law of Theodoslus afainst euauchs was obsolete or abolished (Annotation xx.) ; but the fiwUsh prophecjr 
of the Romans subsisted In full rigour. Procop. 1. iv. c. 91. 

<31) Paul Wamefrid, the Lombard, records with complacency the succour, service, and lM»ourable di» 
mission of bto countrymen— reipubliec Romana adversus emulos adjulores ruerant.(l. li. c. 1, p. 774, edit. . 
Grot.) I am surprised that Alboin, their martial king, did not lead hto subjects in peraon.t 

(39) ire wnn, if not an impostor, the son of the blind Zamee, saved by compassion, and educated in' 
the By»ittiac court by the various motives of policy, pride, and generosity (Procop. Persic. 1. i. c. CD. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. m 

Lombards. The station of Verona was occupied by Teias, with the flower oi 
the Gothic forces : and that skilful commander bad overspread the adjacent 
country with the fall of woods and the inundation of waters.(33^ In this per- 
plexity an officer of experience proposed a measure, secure by the appearance 
of rasnness ; that the Roman xrmj ^ould cautiously advance along the sea- 
shore, while the fleet preceded their march, and successively cast a bridge of 
boats over the mouths of the rivers, the Timavus, the Brenta, the Ad^, and< 
the Po, that fall into the Hadriatic to the north of Ravenna. Nine days he* 
reposed in the city, collected the fragments of the Italian anny, and marched' 
toward Rimini to meet the defiance of an insultiis enemy. 

[A. D. 652.] The prudence of Narses impelleahim to speedy and decisive 
action. His powers were the last eflbrt of the state ; the cost of each day 
accumulated the enormous account ; and the nations, untrained to discipline or 
fati^e, mi^t be rashly provoked to turn their arms a^^ainst each other, or - 
against their benefactor. The same considerations might have tempered' 
the ardour of Totila. But he was conscious, that the cieigy and people of 
Italy aspired to a second revolution ; he felt or suspected the rapid progress oi 
treason, and he resolved to risk the Gothic kingdom on the chance ot a day, 
in which the valiant would be animated by instant danger, and the disaffected 
might be awed by mutual ignorance. In his march from Ravenna, the Roman* 
eeneral chastised the garrison of Rimini, traversed in a direct line the hills oft 
Urbino, and re-entered the Flaminian way, nine miles beyond the perforated' 
rock, an obstacle of art and nature which mi^t have stopped or retarded his 
progres8.(34) The Gotfas were assembled in the neighbouroood of Rome, they 
advanced without delay to .seek a superior enemy, and the two armies ap* 
proached each other at the distance of one hundred furlongs, between Ta- 
gma(35) and the sepulchres of the Gauls.(36) The haughty messaee of Nar- 
ses was an offer, not of peace, but of pardon. The answer of the Gothic king 
declared his resolution to die or conquer. '^ What day," said the messenger,. 
~ will you hz for the combat ?'' ** Tbe eighth day," replied Totila } but earhf 
the next moioing he attempted to surprise a foe, suspicious of deceit, and pre 
pared for battle. Ten thousand Heruli and Lombaids of approved valour and 
doubtfiil faith, were placed in the centre. Each of the wings was composed 
of eight thousand Romans : the right was guarded by the cavalry of the Huns, 
the left was covered by fifteen hundred chosen horse, destined according to the 
emergencies of action, to sustain the retreat of their friends, or to encompass 
the flank of the enemy. From his proper station at the head of the right wing^ 
the eunuch rode along the line, expressmg by his voice and countenance the- 
aasurance of victory ; exciting the soldiers ot the emperor to punish the guilt 
and madness of a band of robben ; and exposing to their view, gold chains^ 
collars, and bracelets, the rewards of military virtue. From the event of a 
single combat, they dbrew an omen of success ; and they beheld with pleasure- 
the courage of fifty archers, who maintained a small eminence against throe 

(33) la the Ume of Aagutu, tnd lo the middle agn, the whole waste from AquUela to Bavenna waa 
covered wlitawooda,lakea. and moraana. Maa has aubdoed aatue, and the land baa been coMvaied^. 
since the watera are oonflned and embanked. See the learned reaearchea of Moratorl (Antiqultat* 
Ital'u e, amdii jpy j, torn. L dteeert ni. p.SS3, S54), ftom YhniTitta, Strabo, Herodlan, old charters, and 
local knowiedfe. 

(34) The Flaasinlaa way, aa It is eometed ftom the Ittaierarlea, and the best OMNleni mapiLby d'An^ 
▼Hie (Analyse de ritalle, p. 147—1(8) may be thus stated : Roxa to NamI, 51 Soman miles ; Temi, 57; 
Spoleto, 75; Foilfao, 88; Nooera, 1(0; Cacll, 148: Intereiaa, 157; Fossombrone, ISO: Fano, 176; 
Pesawwlfl4;Bijron,g09 abo a t MS EnglMi miles. He takea no notiee of the death of Totila; but Wes- 
seling (Itioerarp. 614,) exchangee for tbe field of Ts/<iia«, tbe nnknown a pp e lla tion of Pienau, eight 
miles fttxn Nocenu 



(35) TagimSfOr ratherTadfaue, tomeatioDedbyPIIny; bat the bishopric of Uiat obaeare town, a mlle^ 
from Goaldo, in the plain, was nailed In the year 1007, with that of Nocera. The signs of antiquity are 
preserved in the local appellationi, Assets, the camp ; Cspro^e, Caprea : BmstU^ Busta Galloram. Seo 
Cluveriua (Italia Antlqua, L 11. c 0, p. 015, 010, 017). Lucas HoMenios (Annotat ad. Clover, p. 85. 60). 
Ooasaeal (Diwertat. pi 177— S17, a praftsaed inqairy,) and the mapa of the eecleilaatical stale and the 
march of Anoona, by Le M aire and Magliia. 

(36) The battle waa (boght hi the year of Rome 45B; and the consnl Decius, by devodng his own Illb, 
aasaied the trinmph of his eoantry and his coHeagoe Fablus (T. Liv. z. S8, S9). Proooplus ascribes u« 
Camlltas the vieiory of the ButU GeJfsmsi; and hie erxor is branded by Cluverioa whh the national, 
reproach of Gnecoram nmameata. 



13S THE DECLINE AND FALL 

successive attacks of the Gothic cavalrj. At the distance only of two bow- 
shots, the armies spent the morning in dreadful suspense, and the Romani 
tasted some neoessary food, without unloosening the cuuass from their breast, or 
the bridle from their horses. Narses awaited the chaiee ; and it was delayed 
by Totila till he bad iieceived bis last succours of twolhousand Goths. While 
hb consumed the hours in fruitless treaty, the king exhibited in a narrow space 
the strength and ajnlity of a warrior. His armour was encbased with gold ; 
his purffe banner floated with the wind : he cast his lance into the air, caught 
it with the right hand, shifted it to the left, threw himself backwards, recovered 
bis seat, and managed a fieiy steed in all the paces and evolutions of the eques- 
trian scbcxd. As soon as the succours bad arrived, he retired to his tent, assumed 
the dress and arms of. a private soldier, and gave the signal of battle. The 
first line of cavaby advanced with more courage than discretion, and left 
behind them the infantiy of the second line. They were soon engaged between 
the boms of a crescent, into which the adverse wings bad been insensibly 
curved, and were saluted from either aide by the vollies of four thousand 
archers. Their ardour, and even their distress, drove them forwards to a close 
and unequal conflict^ in which they could only use their lances against an enemy 
equally skilled in all the instruments of war. A generous emulation inspired 
the Romans and their Barbarian allies ; and Narses, who calmly viewea and 
directed their efforts, doubted to whom he should adjudge the pnse of superior 
braveiy. The Gothic cavaliy was astonished and disordered, pressed and 
broken ; and the line of infantiy, instead of presenting their spears, or <^ning 
their intervals, were trampled under the feet of the flying horse. Six thousand 
of the Goths were slaughtered, without mercy, in the field of Tagina. Their 
prince, with five attendants, was overtaken by Asbad, of the race of the Ge- 
nidaB ; '* Spare the king of Italy,"* cried a loyal voice, and Asbad struck bis 
lance through the body of Totila. The blow was instantly revens:ed by the 
faithful Goms ; they transnorted their dying monarch seven miles beyond the 
scene of his disgrace ; ana his last moments wene not imbiitered by the pre- 
sence of an enemy. Compassion afforded him the shelter of an obscure tomb ; 
but the Romans were not satisfied of their victoiy, till they beheld the coipse 
of the Gothic kiif;. His bat, enriched with gems, and bis bloody robe, were 
presented to Justinian by the messengers of trtumpb.(37) 

As soon as Narses had paid his devotions to the Author of victory, and the 
blessed Viigin, hispecuiiar patn)ness,(38) he praised, rewarded, and dismissed 
the Lombards. Toe villages had. been reduced to ashes fcpr these valiant 
eavages ; they ravished matrons and viigins on the altar : their retreat was 
diligently watched by a strong detachment of regular forces, who prevented a 
repetition of the like disorders. The vict<tfious eunuch pursued hts march 
Ifarougfa Tuscany, accepted the submission of the Goths, heard the acclamations, 
and otlen the complaints of the Italians, and eiKx>ropa8sed the walls of Rome 
with the remainder of his fcM'midable host. Round this wide circumference, 
Narses assin)ed to himself, and to each of his lieutenants, a real or a feigned 
Attack, while he silently marked the place of easy and unguarded entrance. 
Neither the fortifications of Hadrian's mole, nor of the port, could tone delay 
the progress of the conqueror : and Justinian once more received the Keys ot 
Rome, which, under his reign, had been Jhe times taken and recovered.(39) 
But the deliverance of Rome was the last calamity of the Roman people. The 
Barbarian allies of Narses too freouently confouncCed the privileges of peace and 
war : the despair of the flying Goths found some consolation in sanguinary 
revenge ; and three hundred youths of the ix>blest families, who bad b^n sent 
AS hostj^es beyond the Po, were inhumanly dain by the successor of Totila 



(37) TheophaoM, Chron. p. 193. B 

(38) Bvacriua, i. Iv. e. M. The iMpir&liMi of die yiigia revMlad to NanM Uie dtf, and Ibe wofd, of 
wtUe (Paul Diaoon. I. il. c. 3, p. 776). 



Hirt. MIsc<Jl«. l..xTt p. 108. 

baiUe (PaurOiaoon. 1. il. e. 3, p. 776). 

(39) Svi rwv BaaiXtwrrf v vutrrwccXw. In die year 536 bf BeliHuiiu, In 546 bj TolUa, In 547 
4>7 BeliMriua, In 549 by ToUla, and in 558 by Naraea. Naltratua had InadvertenUy tranalaied aortim ; a 
mistake which ho afterward retracta: but Uiemiicldefwaa done; and Couiin, withatiaiaof FraMhMd 
l«atln readeis, have fallen Into thosr-^- 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 189 

The fate of the senate 8Ufi:g^ests an awful lesson of the vicissitode of human 
afiah?. Of the senators woom Totila had banished from their country, some 
were rescued br an officer of Belisarius, and transported from Campania to 
Sicily; while others were too guilty to confide in the clemency of • Justmian, or 
too poor to provide horses for their escape to the sea-shore. Their brethren 
languished nve years in a state of indigence and exile : the victory of Narses 
revived their hopes ; but their premature return to the metropolis was prevented 
by the furious Groths ; and all the fortresses of Campania were stained with 

£atrician(40) blood. After a period of. thirteen centuries, the institution of 
lomulus expired; and if the nobles of Rome still assumed the title of 
senators, few subsequent traces can be discovered of a public council, or 
constitutional order. Ascend six hundred years, and contemplate the kings 
of the earth soliciting an audience, aa the slaves or freedmeo of the Roman 
senate !(41) 

[A. D. 553.1 The Gothic war was yet alive. The bravest of the nation 
retired beyond the Fo ; and Teias was unanimously chosen to succeed and 
revenge their departed hero. The new king immeaiately sent ambassadors to 
implore, or rather to purchase, the aid of the Franks, and nobly lavished for 
the public safety^ the riches which had been deposited in the palace of Favia. 
The residue of the royal treasure was guarded Dj^ his brother Al^m at Cumae 
in Campania : but the strong castle which Totila had fortified, was closely 
besi^d by the arms of Narses. From the Alps to the foot of mount Vesuvius, 
the Crothic kios^, by rapid and secret marches, advanced to the relief of his 
brother, eludecT the vigilance of the Roman chieis, and pitched his camp on 
the banks of the Samus or i>ra^,(42) which flows from Nuceria into the bay 
of Naples. The river separated the two armies ; sixty dajs were consumed 
in dbtant and fruitless combats, and Teias maintained tnis important post, till 
he was deserted hy his fleet and the hope of subsistence. With reluctant steps 
he ascended the Laciarian mount, where the plr^sicians of Rome, since the 
time of Galen, had sent their patients for the benefit of thealrandthe milk.(43) 
But the Goths soon embraced a more generous resolution : to desoend the nill, 
to dismiss their horses, and to die in arms, and in the possession of freedom. 
The kin^ marched at their head, bearing in his right hand a lance, and an ample 
buckler in his lefl : with the one be struck dead the foremost of the assailants; 
with the other he received the weapons which evei^r hand was ambitious to 
aim against his life. After a combat of many hours, his left arm was fatigued 
by the weight of twelve javelins which hupg from his shield. Without moving 
from his ground, or suspending his blows, the berocalledaloud on his attendant^ 
for a fresh buckler, but in the moment while his side was uncovered, it was 
pierced by a mortal dart. He fell : and his head, exalted on a spear, pro- 
claimed to the nations that the Gothic kingdom was no more. But the example 
of his death served only to animate the companions who had sworn to perish 
with their leader. They fought till darkness descended on the earth. They 
reposed on their arms. The combat was renewed with the return of light, and 
maintained with unabated vigour till the eveniiu^ of the second day. The 
repose of a second night, the want of water, and the loss of their bravest cham- 
pions, determined the surviving Goths to accept the fair capitulation, which the 
prudence of Narses was inclined to propose. They embraced the alternative 
of residing in Italy as the sul^ects and soldiers of Justinian, or departing with 

(40) Coap«e two porageg of Procoplos (1. 111. c. SS. L It. e. 34), whiehi with Bome eonatenl hiatB 
irom llafc«HiBUB and Jornandes, flluatnite tiie lUte of toe expiring senate. 

(41) See in Uie example of Prtnlas, as it te dellTered inthe fnsments of Pidyblui (Excerpt Legat zc\1«. 
f . S97, ffS8), a eorioos pletaro of a roiral slave. 

(4S) The Apacwy of Proeoptos (Goth. 1. !▼. c 35), Is evidently the Bftnras. The text Is accused or 
ahersd by the rush vMenee of Oinveritts (i. It. c. 3, p. 1156). bat CamlUo Pellegrini of Naples (Disconi 
•opra la Campania Felice, p. 330, 331,) has proved from old records, that as early as the year 898, that 
rtver WM called the Draeonilo, or Draconcello. 

(43) Galen (de Method. Medendi, 1. v. apad Clnver. 1. 1 v. e. 3, p. 1139, 1180,) describes the lofty site, 
jmrs air, and rich milk of mount Lactarius, whose medicinal beneflu were equally known and sought In 
Uie timeof Symmachus (I. vi. eplst 18,) andCaaslodorlus (Var. xi. 10). ^Nothing Is now left exeept Uit 
aane of the town of Ltltsrt 



140 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

a portion of tbeir private wealth, in search of some independent counti7.(44j 
Yet the oath of fidelity or exile was alike rejected bv one thousand Goths, who 
brdLe away before the treaty was sig:ned, and boldly effected their retreat to 
the wails of Pavia. The spirit, as well as the situation of Aligem, prompted 
him to imitate, rather than to bewail his brother: a stroma and dexterous 
archer, he transpierced with a sinele arrow the armour and breast of his anta- 
gonist ; and his military conduct defended CumaB(45) above a year against the 
forces of the Romans. Tbeir industry bad scooped the Sibyl's cave(46) into a 
prodigious mine ; combustible materials were introduced to consume the tem- 
porary props : the wall and the gate of Cumse sunk into the cavern, but the 
ruins formed a deep and inaccessible precipice. On the fragment of a rocfir 
Aligem stood alone and unshaken, till he calmly surveyed the hopeless condition 
of bis country, and judged it more honourable to be the friend of Narses than 
the slave of the Franks. After the death of Teias, the Roman general separated 
his troops to reduce the cities of Italy ; Lucca sustained a long and vigorous 
siege ; and such was the humanity or the prudence of Narses, that the repeated' 
perfidy of the inhabitants could not provoke him to exact the forfeit lives of 
their hostages. These hostages were dismissed in safety ; and their grateful 
zeal at length subdued the obstinacy of their countiTmen.(47) 

[A. D. 553.1 Before Lucca had surrendered, Italy was overwhelmed by a 
new deluge of Barbarians. A feeble youth, the gnmdson of Glovis, reigned 
over the Austrasians or Oriental Franks. The ^ardians of Theodebald enter 
tained with coldness and reluctance the magnificent promises of the Gothic 
ambassadors. But the spirit of a martial people outstripped the timid counsels 
of the court : two brothers, Lothaire and Buccelin,(48) the dukes of the Ale- 
manni, stood forth as the leaders of the Italian war : and seventy-five thousand 
Germans descended in the autumn finom the Rheetian Alps into the plain of 
Milan. The vanguard of the Roman army was stationed near the Po, under 
the conduct of Fulcaris, a bold Hetulian, who rashly conceived, that personal 
bravery was the sole duty and merit of a commander. As he marched without 
order or precaution along the £milian waj, an ambuscade of Franks suddenly 
rose from the amphitheatre of Parma ; his troops were surprised and routed ; 
but their leader refused to fly ; declaring to the last moment, diat death was. 
less terrible than the angiy countenance of Narses.* The death of Fulcaris,. 
and the retreat of the surviving chiefs, decided the fluctuating and rebellious 
temper of the Goths ; they flew to the standard of their deliverers, admitted 
them into the cities which still resisted the arms of the Roman general. The 
conqueror of Italy opened a free passage to the irresistible torrent of Barbarians. 
They passed under the walb of the Cesena, and answered by threats and 
reproaches the advice of Ali^m,^that the Gothic treasures could no loneer 
repay the labour of an invasion. Two thousand Franks were destroyed by 
the skill and valour of Narses himself, who sallied from Rimini at the bead of 
three hundred horse, to chastise the licentious rapine of their mareh. On the 
confines of Samnium, the two brothers divided their forces. With the right 
wing Buccelin assumed the spoil of Campania, Lucania, and Bruttium : with 
the leA, Lothaire accepted the plunder of Apulia and Calabria. They followed 
the coast of the Mediterranean and the Hadriatic, as far as Rhegium and Otranto» 

(44) Boot (torn. xl. II. % ke.) convey to his (kvonriie Bavwte Uito ramnant of GoMm, wlio by olhera 
are buried In Uie mountaiin of Uri, or nwtored to Uielr native lale of GoUiland. Masoou, Annot. xjd. 

(45) I leave 8ca)teer (Anlmadven. in Enaeb. p. 560 •ad Salmaalui (eaercitat. Plinian. p. 51, SSL) b: 
quarrel about Uie origin of Cunw, tbe oldeat of Uie Greek ootonlea in Italy CStrab. 1. ▼. p. 373, Veileiu» 
Patf rcttlua, L i. c. 4). already vacant in Juvenal's Ume (Satir. IU.)i and now in niina. 

. (f<>) Ac^laa (I. i. e. SI,) lettlea Uie Slbyr* cave under Uie vrall of Cumm ; be acreea wiUi Serviua (aii 
{•,y^-.^^^hF^ **o ' perceive why Uielr opinion ■hooU be r^ected by Heyne, the excellent editor of 
Vf npi (torn. il. p. 650, 651). In urbe mediA lecreU religlo ! But Cume wm not yet built ; and Uie lines. 
^*'7i^?^') "^^^ become ridiculous, If iBneas were actoaUy In a Greek city. 

(47) There Is some difficulty In oonnecUng Uie thhrty-flAh chapter of Uie fourUi book of the Gothic war 
ot Procopius wiUi Uie first book of Um blstonr of AfaUiias. We now relinquish a statenaan nod soldier 
to attend Uie footsteps of a poet and rhetorician (I. \. p 11, L lU p. 51. edit. Louvre). 

(48) Amoiw the fabulous exploits of BuoceUn, he discomfited and slew Belisarius, subdued Italy andr 
ffotlfj.ftc. .^Sec, n the Historians of France, Gregory of Touia (torn. IL I. ill. c. 33, p. 9030 and Aimol* 
itoin. ill. 1. iL de Gostis Franconun, c. 93, p. 5B) — j i- »/ 



OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. 141 

and the extieme lacds of Italy were the tenn of their dealnictive pmgrest 
The Franks, who were Christians and Catholics, contented themselves with 
simple pillage and occasional murder, fiut the churches which their piety had 
spared, were stripped by the sacrileg^us hands of the Alemanni, who sacrificed 
horses' heads to their native deities of the woods and rivers ;(49) they melted 
or profaned the consecrated vessels, and the ruins of shrines and altars were 
stained with the blood of the faithful. Buccelin was actuated by ambition,and 
Lothaire by avarice. The former aspired to restore the Gothic kingdom : the 
latter, after a promise to hb brother of speedy succours,, returned by the same 
road to deposite his treasure beyond the Alps. The strength of tneir armies 
was already wasted by the change of climate and contagion of disease : the 
Germans revelled in the vintaeeof Italy: and their own intemperance avenged, 
in some degree, the miseries of a defenceless people.* 

[A. D. 564.]^ At the entrance of the spring, the Imperial troops, who had 
guarded the cities, assembled to the numoer of eighteen thousand men in the 
neigbbouriiood of Rome. Their winter hours had not been consumed in idle- 
iiess. By the command and after the example of Narses, they repeated each 
day their military exercise on foot and on horseback, accustomed their ear to 
obey the sound of the trumpet, and practised the steps and evolutions of the 
Fyirhic dance. From the straits of Sicily, Buccelin, with thirtr thousand 
Franks and Alemanni. slowly moved toward Capua, occupied witn a wooden 
tower the bridge of Cfasilinum, covered his right by the stream of the Vultur- 
nus, and secured the rest of his encampment bv a rampart of sharp stakes, and 
a circle of wagons, whose wheels were buried, in the earth. He impatiently 
expected the return of Lothaire ; ignorant, alas ! that hb brother could never 
return, and that the chief and his army had been swept ^^27 ^^ ^ strange dis- 
.ease,(60) on the banks of the lake Benacus* between Trent and Verona. 
The banners of Narses soon approached the Vultumus, and the eyes of Italy 
were anxiously fixed on the event of this final contest. Perhaps the talents of 
the Roman general were most conspicuous in the calm operations^which pre- 
cede the tumult of a battle. His skilful movements intercepted the subsistence 
of the Barbarian, deprived him of the advantage of the bridge and river, and in 
the choice of the g^und and moment of action, reduced him to comply with the 
inclination of his enemy. On the morning of the important da^, when the 
ranks were already formed, a servant, for some trivial fault, was killed by his 
master, one of the leaders of the Heruli. The justice or passion of Narses was 
awakened : he summoned the offender to his presence, and without listening to 
his excuses, gave the signal to the minister of death. If the cruel master had 
not infringedthe lavrs of his nation, this arbitrary execution was not less unjust, 
than it appears to have been imprudent. The neruli felt the indignity ; they 
halted : but the Roman general, without soothing their rage, or expecting their 
resolution, called aloud, as the trumpets sounded, that unless they hastened to 
occupy their place, they would lose the honour of the victory. His troops 
were disposedfSl) in a long front, the cavalry on the wings ; in the centre, the 
heavy-armed toot; the archers and slingers in the rear. The Germans 
advanced in a sharp-pointed column, of the form of a triangle or solid wed^e 
They pierced the feeble centre of Narses, who received them with a smile into 
the fatal snare, and directed his wings of cavalry insensibly to wheel on their 
Banks and encompass their rear. The host of the Franks and Alemanni cod* 
sisted of infantry : a sword and buckler hung by their side, and thejr used as 
their weapons of oflence, a weighty hatchet, and a hodced javelin, which were 
only formidable in close combat or at a short distance. The flower of the 

(49) AgatlilM Bodcof tlielr mparitltloii to a pMloBOphle toiw) (I- 1- P- VS). At Zog, In Switserlmid, 
idolatry Mill pravailed In the year 613 : St. Ootumban and St Gall were the apostles oftbat rode countrr . 
and tlM latter fmnded a hermitage, whleh has swelled Into an eoelailaadcal pcinelpallQr and a popuiooa 
cinr. the neat of freedom and commerce. 

(S0)8ne the death of Lothnire in Agathlas 0- U- P- 38|) tod Pan! WamefUd, sanamed Diacooua (L U 
«.3.77S^. The Greek makes him rave and tear his flesh. He had plondered churches. 

(SI) Fire Daniel (Hisc de la MaUco Fransoiee, torn. f. p. 17— SIO has exhibited a fkncifnl represenUtlon 
of this battle, somewhat in the manner of the Chevalier Folard, the onoe faaoiis editor of Folf Moi, wlio 
''^'^ — 1 10 iili own hablli and opIiUoaiaU the military oporattoiM of viUqaigr. 



149 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

Roman archeTS, on horseback, and in complete armour, skirmished without penl 
vound this immoveable phalanx ; sujiplied by active speed the deficiency of 
number; and aimed their arrows against a crowd of Barbarians, who, instead 
of a cuirass and helmet, were covered by a loose la^rment of fur or linen. 
They paused, they trembled^ their ranks were confounded, and in the decisive 
moment the Heruli, preferring glory to revenge, charg^ed with rapid violence 
the head of the column. Their leader, Sindbai, and Alieem, the Gothic prince, 
deserved the prize of superior valour ; and their example incited the victorious 
troops to achieve with swords and spears the destruction of the enemy. Buc- 
celin, aiid the greatest part of his army, perished on the field of battle, in the 
waters of Vulturnus, or by the hands ot the enraged peasants : but It may seem 
inciedibk, that a ViGtoiy,(62) which no more than five of the Alemanni survived, 
could be purchased with the loss of fourscore Romans. Seven thousand Goths, 
the relics of the war, defended the fortress of Campsa tiH the ensuing spring ; 
and eveiy messenger of Nanes announced the reduction of the Italian cities, 
whose names were corrupted by the ignorance or vanity of the Greeks.(53) 
After the battle of Casilinum, Narsea entered the capital ; the arms and trea- 
sures of the Croths, the Franks, and Alemanni, were displayed ; his soldiers, 
with garlands in their hands, chanted the praises of the conqueror : and Rome^ 
for the laA time, beheld the semblance of a triumph, 

[A. D. 554 — 568.] After a reign of sixty years, the throne of the Gothic kings 
was filled by the exarchs of Ravenna, the representatives m peace and war of 
the emperor of the Romans. Their iurisdiction was soon reduced to the lunit» 
of a narrow province : but Narses himself, the first and most powerful of the 
exarchs, admmistered above fifteen years the entire kmgdom of Italy. Like 
Belisarius, he had deserved the honours of envy, calumny, and disgrace : but the 
£ivourite eunuch still enjoyed the confidence of Justinian, or the leader of a vic- 
torious airay awed and repressed the ingratitude of a timid court. Tet it was not 
by weak and mischievous indulgence that Narses secured the attachment of his 
troops. Foigetful of the past, and regardless of the future, they abused the 
preseat hour of prosperity and peace. The cities of Italy resounded with the 
noise of drinking and dancing : the ^oils of victory were wasted in sensual 
pleasures; and nothing fsays Agathias) remained, unless to exchange their 
shields and helmets fiwr the soft lute and the capacious hogshead.(54) In a 
manly oration, not unworthy of a Roman censor, tbiB eunuch reproved these dis- 
orderly vices, which sullied their fame and ^endangered their safety. The 
soldiers blushed and obeyed : discipline was confirmed, the fortifications were 
restored ; a dufts was stationed for the defence and militaiy command of each 
of the principal cities ;(55) and the eye of Narses pervaded, the auple prospect 
from Ualabna to the Alps. The lemains of the Gothic nation evacuated the 
countiy, or mingWd with the people • the Fr&nks, mstead of revengmg the death 
of Buccel in, aTOndoned. without a struggle, their Italian conquests: and the 
rebellious Sindbal, chief of the Heruli, was subdued, taken, and bu^g on a lofty 
gallows by the inflexible justice of the exarch.(6S) The civil state of Italy, 
after the agitation of a long tempest, was fixed by a pragmatic sanction, which 
the cmjpjeror promulgated at the request of the pope. Justinian introduced his 
own jorispruaence into the schools and tribunals of the West : be ratified the 
acts of Tbeodoric and his immediate successors^ but every deed was rescinded 
and abolished, which force had ext<Mrted, or fear had subscribed, under tb& 

t 

2^ Afsihtaa (I. ii. |i. 47,) ham pndooed m Graek epinn of ttx naM od fbii vfciorj of ITsfMs, wblcb 
vourably oompared to the baulMof iUntlKw vod Platca.* The ctatef illlliiieneft ta Udtod In Uislr 
oonwqu«nce»~«o trivial in Um ibnner InfCance—ao permanent and glorioua In tlie latter. 

(^; Tbe Beroi and Brincaa of Tbeopbanei or Ua tranicfiber (p. 8Q1,) muat bo rea4 or nidontoodi 
Verona and Briacia. 

(M) EXtvrro y^ oi/my ovroic wn tifitXruMS ns aniias rvxav c« r« xpamf tai^opamt tw mtu fiafkrm 
axoioa^ (Af^aiMaat 1. tf. p. 48) In Uw fliat icene of Bichard BL oar Engliab poet taa boaotitaUf 
enlarged on tJi» idea ; for which, bowever, he waa not indebted to the Byzantine historian. 

(55) Maftl has proved (Verona lUitstrata, P. i L z p. 357. 3800 against the conunon opInloQ, Uiat tba 
dukes of Italy were bistltoted before tbe conquests of the I^ombard by Narses hiaeeUl Ja the Piagpnatic 
Sanction (NaS3), Justinian restrains the Judices miUtares. 

(56) flee Paahis Diaconus, I. ill. c. SE, p. 770. Meaander (In Excerpt. LegaL p. 133.) 
rieinfi in Italy by the Fraaks, and Theophanes (p. SOJJ hints at some Gottiic rebellions. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 14S 

asinpatfon of TotDa. A moderate theory was framed to reconcile the rights of 
propertj with the safety of prescriptiony the claims of the state with the poveity 
of the people* and the pardon of offences with the interest of virtue and order 
of society. Under the exarchs of Ravenna, Rome was dej^ded to the second 
nnk.' I et the senators were gratified by the permission orvisiting their estates 
in Italy, and of approaching without obstacle the throne of Constantinople the 
legolatiob of weigiits and measures was delegated to the pope and senate ; and 
the salaries of lawyers and physicians, of orators and grammarians^ were des- 
tined to preserve or rekindle the light of science in the ancient capital. Jus- 
tioian m^t dictate benevolent edtct8,(67) and Narses miefat secona bis wishes 
by the restoration of cities, and more especially of churches. Bat the power 
or kings is most effectual to destroy : and the twenty years of the Gothic war 
had consummated the distress and depopulation of Italy. As early as the fourth 
campaipi, under the discipline of BePisarius himselr, fifty thousand labourers 
diedf of huoger(68) m the narrow region of Picenum;(59) and a strict inter- 
pretation of the evidence of Procopius would swell the loss of Italy above the 
total sum of her present inhabitants. (60) 

J[A. D. 669.] I desire to believe, but I dare not affirm, tint Belisaiius sincerely 
ie}oiced in the triumph of Narses^ ^ Yet the consciousness of his own exploits 
migfat teach him to esteem without jealousy the merit of a rival ; and the repose 
of the aged warrior was crowned oy a last victory which saved the emperor 
and the capital. The Barbarians who annually visited the provinces oi 
Europe were less discouraged b^r some acckiental defeats, than they were 
excited by the double hope of spoil and of subsidy. In the thirty-second win- 
ter ci Justinian's reign, the Danube was deeply froxen : Zabeigan led the 
cavahy of the Bulgarians, and his standard was followed by a promiscuous 
multitude of Sclavonian8.t The savage chief passed without opposition the 
river and the mountains, n>read his troops over Macedonia and Thrace, and 
advanced with no more tnan seven thousand horse to the long walls which 
should have delended the teiritoiy of Constantinople. But the woiks of man 
are impotent against the assaults of nature : a recent earthquake had shaken 
the fowidations of the walls ; and the forces of die empire were empk)ye4 on 
the distant frontiers of Italy, Africa, and Persia. The seven ieXk>Mt,(61) or 
oompanies of the guards or domestic troops, had been augmented to the num- 
ber of five thousand five hundred men, whose ordinary station was in the 
peaoefiil cities of Asia. But the places of the bnve Armenians were insensiblr 
supplied by \9lzj citisens, who purchased an exemption fixmi the duties of civu 
lifoy without being exposed to the dangers of military service. Of such sol- 
diers, few could M tempted to sally from ^ gates ; and none could be per- 
suaded to remain in the field, unless they wanted strength and speed to escape 
from the Bulgarians. The report of the fi«itives exa^nted the numbers and 
fierceness of an enemy, who nad polluted holy viigins, and abandoned new- 
bom infants to the does and vultures ; a crowd of rustics, imploring food and 
protectk)n. mcrsased the consternation of the oih^, and the tents of Zabergan 
were pitcned at the distance of twenty miles,(6t) on the banks of a small 



(S7) TlMPnciMtteSwietloBOf Jaittaitan,wllMi«flloi«aiidnnlatMt]ied^^ 
oTxXTUMtklw: ltis4M«d Ai«Htl5,A.a5M;taaMnMidtn>tarM,y. J.PiMOriawSM^ 
iDd to ADttochuL rnBfeGUwFrvlorlo Italia; and baa baan iii aa er f cd bf Julian Aatac o Mor, and Jn tl» 
Corpua Jorla CI vliia, after di« oovds and adieu of JuMtalan, JtittlA, and Tiberiua. 

(SB) A fttn gnaater anmber waa eoaaamed tr ftarina la tha MuMMni provlnoM, whhool (uerot) tfle 
Ionian Oolf. AcomawcreoasdintiMplaeaofbraad. ProaoplaahadaeaaadaMriadorpbannickladbf 
a ibe-foaL Seventeen paaengan were lodged, murdered, and eaten by two wonaenwbowcre delected 
anddain, b] " '^ 



Pffoeoplaa had aeea a deMfied orpban eucklad bf 

___-_.. , „..iwere lodEed.miird " - • ^ .. - 

I dain, bjr die eiRhleentli. &e.* 

(50) Qainta reglo ncenl eit; qoonaam noennnuB nmniaioinH, eecu muiia noenunm m naem 
P. R. venere (PUn. Hlat Natnr. UL 18). In tbe tfane of yeipwrian, Uila aadent pofmlatlon waa ata«a4f 



(60) PerlHtpi iAianar etittan ■llliaML Pioeoptaa (Anaedei. e. n^) eowprtea tlwt Aftfea IimI ftv 
mUUonB, that Italy waa tbrlce aa eztenalve, and tbat the depopdatlon waa In a laifw piopoitten. Fat 
Mai«ekanti« to inAuMd by paakm, and doodad wHIi nneerialnly. 

(61) lb Um decay of tbeoa ailUiaryoekooli. diaeatiieorrpoeofiiuc (Aneedot e. M, Ataman. ^ 168,1100 
If ormflrmed and iUuemted by AgaUilae (1. v. p. I5B), who cannot be rejected as a boatile witneei. 

m The dtalmaaa ftmn OMManttDoale to Heianltalaa, Vllln dSMUlana (Amialaa. Maro^Un. xxx. 11.) 
tivarloiMlyflMdat]68orllOetadte(0iildMblon il.R.SB8,»3. Agalhlaa^l. v.p.Ue),orxttii«r A 



114 TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

river, which encircles MehnthiaSf and afterward falls into the Pn>i>onti8.(63) 
Justinian trembled : and those who bad only seen the emperor in his old aee, 
were pleased to suppose, that he had lo^ the alacrity and vigour of his youth. 
By his command, the vessels of gold and silver were removed from the churches 
in the neis^hbourfaood, and even the suburbs of Constantinople : the ramparts 
were Jnea with trembling spectators : the eolden eate was crowded with use- 
less {;eBerals and tribunes, and the senate shared the fatigues and the appre- 
hensions of the populace. 

But the eyes of the prince and people were directed to a feeble veteran, who 
was compelled by the public danger to resume the 'armour in which he had 
entered Carthage and defended Rome. The horses of the royal stables, of 
private citizens, and even of the circus, were hastily collected ; the emulation 
of the old and young was roused by the name of Beiisarius, and his first en- 
campment was in i& presence of a victorious enemy. His prudence, and the 
labour of the friendly peasants, secured, with a ditch and rampart, the repose 
of the night : innumerable fires and clouds of dust, were artfully contrived to 
magnify the opinion of his streng[th : his soldiers suddenly passed from despon- 
dency to presumption : and, while ten thousand voices demanded the battle, 
Beiisarius dissemoled his knowledge, that in the hour of trial he most depend 
on the firmness of three hundred veterans. The next morning, the Bulgarian 
cavalnr advanced to the chai]^e. But they heard the shouts of multitudes, they 
beheld the arms and discipline of the front ; they were assaulted on the flanl^ 
by two ambuscades which rose from the woods ; their foremost wairiors fell by 
the hand of the aeed hero and his guards ; and the swiftness of their evolutions 
was rendered usdess by the close attack and rapid pursuit of the Romans. • In 
this action (ao speedy was their flight) the Bulgarians lost only four hundred 
horse ; but Uonstantinople was saved ; and Zabeiean, who felt the hand of a 
master, withdrew to a respectful distance. But hisTriends were numerous in the 
councils of the emperor, and Beiisarius obeyed, with reluctance, the commands 
of envy, and Justinian, which forbade him to achieve the deliverance of his 
country. On his return to the city, the people, still conscious of their daogef, 
accompanied his triumph with acclamations of Joy and gpratitude, which were 
imputed as a crime to the victorious general, but when ne entered the palace, 
the courtiers were silent, and the emperor, after a cold and thankless embrace, 
dismissed him to mingle with the tram of slaves. Yet so deep was the impres- 
sion of his glory on the minds of men, that Justinian, in the seventy-seventh 
year of his age, was encouraged to advance near forty miles from the capital, 
and to inspect in person the restoration of the long wall. The Bulgarians 
wasted the summer in the plains of Thrace ; but they were inclined to peace 
by the failure of their rash attempts on Greece and the Chersonesus. A menace 
of killing their prisoners quickened their payment of heavy ransoms : and the 
departure of Zabei^n was hastened by the report, that doubled-prowed vessels 
were built on the Danube to intercept his passage. The danger was soon 
forgotten ; and a vain question, whether their sovereign had shown more wis- 
dom or weakness, amused the idleness of the city .(64) * 

[A. D. 661.1 About two years after the last victory of Beiisarius, the em- 

Jeror retumed from a Thracian journey of health, or business, or devotion, 
ustinian was afflicted by a pain in bis head ; and his private entry countenanced 
the rumour of his death. Before the third hour of the day, the bakers* shops 
were plundered of theirs bread, the houses were shut, and eveiy citizen, 
with hope or terror, prepared for the impending tumult. The senators them- 
selves, Tearful and suspicious, were convened at the ninth hour; and the 

inilGB (Itinenrlai p. 138. 830. 393. 338, and WoMHog's ObierTUloiiiO- ^^ fint zU milo^ as ikr M 
JUteglimi, wan pavcdlqrJuMiniaB, who buUl a bridge orar a mora* or gvllec, batwaen a lake ani tba 
lea. Pneop. da Bdlf. 1. W. c.8. 

(63) Tbe Atf raa (Pompon. Mela^ I. U. c U. p. 100, edk. yoa.) At die rival's flMmU^ a town or eaade 
of the same naoM waa foitifled by JosiiaiaB. ^Vooop. de Edlf. L It. a. S. Itlneiar. pi 970, and 
WcsieUiic. 

(04) ThB BnAfarian war, and the last tIcioit of BeHsailna, are impeiftctlT leBieaenied la tha prolU 
u.. 1^ or AgaUilM (1. 5, p. 1M-m), awl tiia diy Chnntele ofTlieophaMa (p. 197, 116) 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 14^ 

„ received their commaDdB to visit ever^ part of the city, and pio- 
fUim a general illumination for the recovery of the emperor's health. The 
lennent subsided ; bat eveiy accident betrayed the impotence of the govero- 
ment and the factious temper of the people ; the guards were disi>08ed to 
BMitby as often as their quarters were changed or their pay was withheld ; 
the frequent calamities of fires and earthquaSies afforded the opportunities oc 
disoider ; the disputes of the blues and gieens, of the orthodox and heretics^ 
de^nerated into bloody battles ; and in the presence of the Persian ambassadoi^ 
Justinian blushed for himself and for his suli^ects. Capricious pardon and 
arbitrary punishment imbittered the irksomeaess and discontent of a loof 
feign ; a conspiracy was formed in the palace ; and, unless we are deceived 
by the names of Marcellus and Seigius, the most virtuous and the most profll- 
nte of the courtiers were associated in the same designs. They had GoLed 
the time of the execution ; their rank gave them access to the royal banquet ; 
and their black slaves(65) were stationed in the vestibule and porticoes to an- 
nounce the death of the tyrant, and to excite a sedition in the capital, fiut 
the indiscretion of an accomplice saved the poor remnant of the days of Jus- 
tinian. The conspurators were detected and seized, with daggers hidden under 
their garments ; Marcellus died by his own hand» and Sergius was dragged 
irom the sanctuary.(66) Pressed by remorse, or tempted by the hopes of 
safety, he accused two officers of the household of Belisarius ; and torture 
fivced them to declare that they had acted according to the secret instructions 
of their patron.(67) Posterity will not hastily believe that a hero who, in the 
vigour of life, had disdained the fairest offers of ambition and revenge^ should 
etoop to the murder of his prince^ whom he could not lonff expect to survive. 
His followers were impatient to fly ; but flight must have been supported by 
TObellioQ, and he had lived enough for nature and for j^loiy. Belisarius ap- 
peared before the council with less fear than indignation: after forty years' 
service, the emperor had prejudged his guilt ; and injustice was sanctified by 
the presence and authority of the patriarchs The hfe of Belisarius was gn« 
eiouslv spared; but his fortunes weie sequestered, and, from December to 
July, he was guarded as a prisoner in his own palace. At length his innocence 
was acknowledged : his freedom and honours were restored ; and death, which 
mieht be hastened oy resentment and grief^ removed him from the worid about 
eight months after his deliverance. The name of Belisarius can never die : 
but instead of the funeral, the monuments, the statues, so justly due to his 
memory, I only read, that his treasures, the spoils of the Goths and Vandals, 
were immediately confiscated by the emperor. Some decent portion was 
reserved, however, for the use or his widow ; and as Antonina had much Co 
fepent, she devoted the last remains of her life and fortune to the foundation 
<« a convent Such is the simple and genuine narrative of the fall of Beli- 
sarius and the ingratitude of Ju8tinian.(68) That he was deprived of his eyes, 
and reduced by envy to beg his bread,(69)t^Give a penny to Belisarius the 

(85) ItfSwS' They oonld acKetHy be real Indiaiui ; and die Elhlopiane, Kuneliinee known by that 
name, were never used b^ the aaelenta aa luarda or Ibllowera : Uiey were the trifling, thoiuh coatly, 
objecta of tenale and royal luxnry(Terent Eunttch. aet i. aeeae U. Siwton. fai Anguat e. 83, witha good 
note of Caaaabon. in CaliguM, e. 57). 

(W) The Sefgius^CVandal. 1. li. c. 31, Si, Anecdot. c. 5.) and Maredlqa (Goth. I. ill. c. 31,) are men- 
tioned bv ProeofMoa. See Theophanea, p. 197. 901. 

(97) Alemannua (p. 3.) qnotei aa old Byzanttue MS., whkh haa been printed in the Imperinm Oricn- 
taleofBaadnri. 

(68) or the diagraee and reatorathm of Beliaailna, the genuine original record ia preaerred In the ftac- 
aaent of John Malala (ion. U. p. S3i--M3), and the exact Chronicle of Theophanea (p. lM-401). 
Cedrenoa (Compend. p. 387, 388,) and ZotanM (torn. U. I. ziv. v. US,) aeem to bealtaie between the ofaao- 
lete truth and the growing ^&lK)od. 

(69) The BOurce of thia Idle flible may be derived from a mlacellaneoua work of the xUth century, the 
ChiHada of John Taetkei, a monk4(BaaiI, 1516, ad caleem, Lycophront, Colon. Alobrog. 1614, In Corp. 
Tool Orae.)He relatea the Mtndneaa and beggary of Beliaariua in ten vulgar orpaliticalverMa (Chiliad. 
-Ili. No. 8B. 339—91$. la Corp. Foet 6rcc. torn. IL p. 311). 

Erxc^fiA ^Xiiwv Kpantv tpoa rm fiiXitt 
BcXivapitf oPoXn iitrt rw snf«n|Xarir 



ThIa moral or romantic tale waa Imported Into Italy with the language and manuacripla of Greece t 
tepeated before the end of the zvtb century by Crlnitua, Fontanoa^ and VoiaiainnQa ; attackad by Alelal 

Vol. III.— L 



la THE DECLINE AND FALL 

genenl !*' h a fiction of later times, which has obtained credit, Mr rather fanNB* 
as a strange exampje of the vicissitudes of fortune.(70) 

[A. D. 665.] ft the emperor could rejoice in the death of Belisarius, he 
emoyed the base satisfaction only eight months, the last period of a reign ^ 
thir^-eight, and a life of eighty-three years. It would he difficult to trace 
the character of a prince who is not the most conspicuous object of his own 
times ; but the confessions of an enemy may be received as the safest evidence- 
of his virtues. The resemblance of Justinian to the bust of Domittan, ir 
maliciously uii^d;(71) with the acknowledgment, however, of a well-pro- 
portioned figure, a ruddy complexion, and a pleasing countenance. The em- 
peror was easy of access, patient of hearing, courteous and affable in discourse, 
and a master of the angry passions, which raee with such destructive violence 
in the breast of a despot. Frocopius praises nis temper to reproach him with 
a calm and deliberate cruelty; nut m the conspiracies which attacked his 
authority and person, a more candid judee will approve the justice, or admire 
the clemency of Justinian. He excelled in the private virtues of chastity and 
temperance : but the impartial love of beauty would have been less mischiev- 
ous, than his conjugal tenderness for Theodora : and his abstemious diet waa 
reflated, not by the prudence of a philosopher^ out the superstition of a monk. 
His repasts were short and firigal ; on solemn tast^^ he contented himself with 
water and vegetables ; and such was his strength, as well as fervour, that he 
frequently passed two days and as many nights^ without tastirig any food. The 
measure of his sleep was not less rieorous : after the repose of a single hour, 
the body was awakened by the soul, and to the astonishment of his chamber- 
lains, Justinian walked or studied till the morning Ikht. Such restless applica- 
tion prolonged his time for the acquisition of knowledge(72) and the despatch 
of business ; and he might seriously deserve the reproach of confounding, by 
minute and preposterous diligence, the general order of his administration. 
The emperor professed himself a musician and architect, a poet and philoso- 
pher, a lawyer and theolof^ian ; and if he failed in the enterprise of reconcih'ng 
the Christian sects, the review of the Roman jurisprudence is a noble monument 
of his spirit and industry. In the government of the empire, he was less wise 
or less successful ; the age was unfortunate ; the people were oppressed and 
discontented ; Theodora abused her power ; a succession of bad ministers dis- 
graced his iudgmnent : and Justinian was neither beloved in his life, nor remtted 
at his death. The love of fame was deeply implanted in his breast, but he 
condescended to the poor ambition of titles, honours, and contemporary praise ; 
and while he laboured to Ax the admiration, he forfeited the esteem ana affec- 
tion of the Romans The desi^ of the African and Italian wars was boldly 
conceived and executed ; and his penetration discovered the talents of Belisa- 
rius in the camp, of Narses in the palace. But the name of the emperor is 
eclipsed by the names of his victorious generals ; and Belisarius still Jives, to 
upbraid the en^ and in^titude of his sovereign. The partial favour of 
mankind applauds the genius of a conqueror, who leads and directs his subjects 
in the exercise of arms. The characters of Philip the Second and of Justmiau 
are distinguished by the cold ambition which delights in war, and declines the 
dangers oT the field. Yet a colossal statue of bronze represented the emperor 

fyr the honour of the law ; and ddbnded bvBaronliJui (A. D. Ml, No. 8, Ifcc), Ibr the honour of Uiechureh 
Yet Tseuee himeelf bad read in oOur chronideih that BeHiarlua did not loee his cifht and that he 
reoovered hie fkrae and fbitanee. 

(70) The Matue in the Tilia Borgbeie at Home, in a sitting posture, with an open hand, which is 
vulgarljr ilven tn Belisarius, may be ascribed with more dignity lo Augustus in the act of propitiating 
Nemesli (Wincklemaa, Hist de i*Art. torn. ill. p. 906). Ex noctumo vbA eiiam silpem, quotaanis, die 
certo, omendicabat a populo, cavam manum asses porrigentibus pneliens (Sueton. in AuguBL c 91, with 
an excellent note of Casaubon).'* 

(71) The rubor of Domitlan la stigmatised, quaintlv enough, by the lien of Tacitus (In Vlt Agrlcol. c 
45) ; and has been likewise noticed by die younaer Pifny cPanenrr. c 48,) and Suetonius (in Domiiian. e. 
18, &nd Casaubon ad locum.) Procopitts (Anecdot c 8,) fbolisbry believes that only 9iu bust of Oomitian 
bad reached the sixth centuiy. 

C79) The studies and science of Justinian ara attested by tlie confession (Anecdot. c & 13). still mora 
than hy the praises (Gothic L iti. c. 31, de Edillc. I. i. Proem, c. 7,) of Proeopius. Conault the coplaua 
Indtx of Alemunus, and read the Ulb of Joathiian by Ludewig (p. 13»— 143) 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 14T 

en liorseback, preparing to inarch against the Persians in the habit and amicNnp 
of Achillea, in the great square before the church of St. Sophia, this moott' 
ment was raised on a brass column and a stone pedestal of seven steps : and 
the pillar of Theodosius, which weighed seven inousand four hundred pounds 
of silver, was removed from the same place by the avarice and vanity of Jua* 
tinian. Future princes were more just or indulgent to his memory : the elder 
Andronicus, in the beginning of the fourteenth century, repaired and beauti6ed 
his equestrian statue : since the fall of the empire, it has been melted into- 
cannon by the victorious Turks. (73^ 

I shall conclude this chapter with the comets, the earthquakes, and the 
plague, which astonbhed or afflicted the age of Justinian. 

[A. D. 531^639.] I. In the fiAh year of his reign, and in the month of 
September, a comct(74) was seen during twenty days in the western quarter 
of the heavens, and which shot its rays into the north. Eight years ai\erward^ 
while the sun was in Capricorn, another comet appeared to follow in the^ 
Saeittary ; the size was gradually increasing ; the head was in the east, the 
tail in the west, and it remained visible above forty days. The nations, wha* 
^azed with astonishment, expected wars and calamities from their balefuF 
influence ; and these expectations were abundantly ful611ed. The astronomeis- 
dissembled their ignorance of the nature of these blazine stars, which tbe^ 
affected to represent as the floating meteors of the air ; and few among thenr 
embraced the simple notion of Seneca and the Chaldeans, that they are only" 

glanets of a longer period and more eccentric motion.(76) Time and science* 
ave justified tte conjectures and predictions of the Roman sage : the telescope 
has opened new worlds to the eyes of astronomers ;(76) and, in the narrow- 
space of history and fable, one and the same comet is already found to have 
revisited the earth in aeven equal revolutions of five hundred and sevtenty-five 
years. The ^n<,(77) which ascends beyond the Christian era one thousaikt' 
seven hundred and sixty-seven years, is coeval with Ogy^ the ^ father of 
Grecian antiquity. And this appearance explains the tradition which Vana* 
has preserved, that under his rei^n the planet Venus changed her colour, size^ 
figure, and course ; a prodigjr without example either in past or succeedmp 
ages. (78) The second visit, in the year eleven hundred and ninety-three, is 
darkly implied in the fable of Electra the seventh of the Pleiads, who have 
been reduced to six since the time of the Trojan war. That nymph, the wife 
of Dardanus, was unable to support the ruin of her countiy ; she abandoned* 
the dances of her sister orbs, fled from the zodiac to the north pole, aixf 
obtained, from her dishevelled locks, the name of the comet. The third period 
expires in the year six hundred and eighteen, a date that exactly agrees withr 
the tremendous comet of the Sibyl, and perhaps of PHny^ which arose in the 
West two generations before the reign of Cyrus. The^r^ apparition, forty* 
four years before the birth of Christ, is of all others the most splendid and: 
important. AAer the death of C^sar, a long-haired star was conspicuous tO'^ 
Rome and to the nations, during the games which were exhibited by yoaDg- 
Octavian, in honour of Venus and his uncle. The vulgar opinion, that it con- 
veyed to heaven the divine soul of the dictator, was cherished and consecrated* 

(73) See In Um C. p. Chriitlana of Dnouige (L «. «i «4, No. 1), a ehaia oTorlginal tertlmonfes, Item Tfb^- 
coplue In die ■izth, to Gylllue In die etztcendi eei.«ur>. 

(74) Tbe am eonwt is meudoned by John Malnlm (torn. IL p. 190l 919,) and Theopbanei (p. ISf); dl«r 
•eoond by Prooopiiu (Peralc. I. ii. c. 4). Yet I Mroncly suapect tbdr IdenUty. The paleneoa of dieam 
(VandaL I. U. c 14,) la applied by Theophanui (p. lO.) to a dlflbent year.* 

(75) 8eneca*s aeveath book of Nataral QneilkMis dlapteya, in tbe theory of oometa, a pbUbaophte mtadL 
Tet ■hoold we not loo candidly confound a vague prediction, a veniet tempua, 4ce. with the merit of naT 



(9B) AammoBBen may «ndy Newion and HaDey. I draw my humble sdenee frcm the aidcle Cohktb^ 
In dM French EncTclopedie by M. d*Alembert. 

(77) Wbiston, the honest, pious, irisionary Whiston, bad ftnded, for tbe era of Noah*s flood CTHTj — 
beflire Christ), a prior apparition of tlie same comet which drowned tbe earth with its tall. 

(78) A dissertation of Preret (Memolres de I'Academle des Inscriptions, tom. x. p. 357—^77,) aiRndb m 
happy union of phlioeophy and erudition. The phenomenon in tbe time of Omes was preserved ly 
Yarro (apud A'ngustin. de Civltate Dei, xzl. 8), who quotes Castor, Dion of Naples, and Adrasloa e#' 
Cyilca»---nohUes mathematlci. The two subsequent periods are preserved by the Gteek mylholodstor 
and die spurious books of flibyUne veiMs. 

L2 



«48 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

oy (he piety of a statesman while m secret supentition referred the ooinet 
to the j^oiy of his own times.(79^ The Jifih visit has been already ascribed 
<o the fifth year of Justinian, whicn coincides with the five hundred and thir^« 
first of the Christian era. And it may deserve notice, that in thb, as in tne 
preceding instance, the comet was followed, thoug;fa at a longer interval, by a 
remarkable paleness of the sun. The tixth return, in the jear eleven huiadred 
and six, Is recorded by the chronicles of Europe and China ; and in the first 
fervour of the Crusades, the Christians and the Mahometans might surmise 
vrith equal reason that it portended the destruction of the Infidels. The ieventh 
phenomenon, of one thousand six hundred and eighty, was presented to the 
«yes of an enlightened age.(80) The philosophy of Bayle dispelled a preju- 
dice which Milton's muse bad so recently adorned, that the comet, ** from its 
Itorrid hair shakes p^estilence and war. (81) Its road in the heavens was 
observed with exquisite skill by Flamsteaa and Cassini ; and the mathematical 
4Science of Bernoulli, Newton,*and Halley, investigated the laws of its revolu 
tions. At the eighth period, in the year two thousami two hundred and fifty-five, 
their calculations may perhaps be verified by the astronomers of some future 
capital in the Siberian or American wilderness. 

ll. The near approach of a comet may injure or destroy the elobe which 
we inhabit ; but the changes on its surface nave been hitherto produced b;^ the 
action of volcanoes and earthquakes.(82) The nature of the soil may indicate 
the countries most exposed to these formidable concussions, since they are 
caused by subterraneous fii-es, and such fires are kindled by the union and 
(fermentation of iron and sulphur. But their times and efiects appear to lie 
.beyond the reach of human curiosity, and the philosopher will discreetly 
abstain from the predictbn of earthquakes, till he has counted the drops of 
water that silently filtrate on the inflammable mineml, and measured the caverns 
which increase by resistance the explosion of the imprisoned air. Without 
assigning the cause, histoiy will distinguish the periods in which these cala- 
mitous events have been rare or frec^ueot, and wul observe, that this fever of 
the earth raged with uncommon violence during the reini of Justinian.(83} 
Each year is marked by the repetition of earthquakes, of such duration, that 
Constantinople has been shaken above forty days ; of such extent, that the 
•shock has been communicated to the whole surface of the globe, or at least of 
the Roman empire. An impulsive or vibratoiy motion was felt ; enormous 
chasms were opened, huee and heavy bodies were discharged into the air, the 
sea alternately advanced and retreated beyond its ordinaiy bounds, and a 
4iiountain was torn from Libanus,(84) and cast into the waves, where it pro- 
tected, as a mole, the new harbour of Botrys(86) in Phamicia. The stroke 
4hat agitates an ant-hill, may crush the insect myriads in the dust ; yet truth 

^ tTD) Pliny (HbL Nat. U. S3,) baa tmaeribed tbe origliial moDorial of Aoguatiia. Mafran, ia hla moat 
•ngenlous letten to the P. Parennln. miaslonary in China, reroom the games and the eomet orBeptennlwr, 
ftom the year 44 to the year 43, before tbe Chriatiaa era ; but I am not totally subdaed by the criticiam of 
.Che aatninomer. Opanulei, p. 97S— 3S1. 

(80) Thia laat comet waa vtiible In the month of December, 16B0l Bayle, who began hla Penalea aur 
1e Comete In January, lS8l (Oeuvrea, torn. 111.). waa forced to aigue that a nmenuUural comet would 
ftiavaeouflrmedUieaMsie&Uint" ' ^ ' *- -■■ • —- 



oeuvrea, torn. IliO.waa forced to aigue that a npmiuUural comet wo 
their MolatfT. BernoalH (aee hia EUir*^ In Fontenelle, torn. v. p. W,) i 
Migh not the head, was a nr« of the wrath of God. 



^oroed to allow that tbe tall, though not the )iead, was a wien 

(81) Paradiae Loal wm publiahed In die year 1S67 ; anf the ftmooa ttaes (1. U. 7W, itc) which atailled 
ithe licenser, may allude to the recent comet of 1S64, obse rv ed by CaiainI at Rome, In the preaence of 
«|aean Christina (FonleiMlle, In hia JElsfe, torn. t. p. 338). Had Charlea IL betrayed any aymptoma of 
eurioaln^orfeart 

(Hi) For the cauae of earthquakea, see BulTon (torn. i. p. SSBSX. Supplement a rHliL Naturrile, 
torn. V. p. 389-390, ediUon in 4ta) Valmont de Bomare (Diedonaira d'HiatoIre Natorelle, TrmtUment 
4t 7VrT«, P^ritrg)^ Watson (Cbymlcal Essays, tom. I. p. 181—900). 

OSS) The earthquakes that shook the Roman world in the reign of Justinian, are described or men- 
<k>oed by Procoplus (CSoUi. 1. iv. c. 3S. Anecdot. c. 18), Agathias (I- U- P- SB, 53, 64, i. ▼. p. 145— 18S), John 
Iffalala (Chron. torn, ii p. 140-146. 176, 177. 183. Id3. S50. 33». 331. WQ, S34,) and Tbeophancs (p. 19J. 
383.180.101— 10«).1 

(84) An abrupt height, a perpendicular cape between Amdoa and Botrya, naaied by tbe Greeks Omv 
■naomtww and anrpomtvov or \i$owpoomww 1^ the acrapukraa Chrtstlans. (Polyb. L t p. 411, Pompon. 
Vela. 1. 1. c. 13, p. 87, cum Isaac Voas. Observat. Maundreli, Journey, p. 3B, 33, Peacock's Deseripttoa, 
V(4. H. p. 99). 

(85) Botrys waa founded (ann. ante Chrlat. 035~«i3) by lUiobal, king of Tyre (Maraham, Canon. 
Ghron. p. 387, 388). Ita poor lepreaentatlve, die village of Patnme, Is now destitoie of a baitoor. 



OF THE ROMAN £MFIR£. Mr 

most eitort a confession^ that man has industriously laboured for his own 
destruction. The institution of spreat cities» which include a nation within the 
limits of a wall, almost realizes the wish of Caligula, that the Roman people 
bad but one neck. Two hundred and fifty thousand persons are said to have 
perished in the earthquake of Antioch, whose domestic multitudes were swelled 
by the conflux of strangers to the festival of the Ascension. The loss of Berr* 
tus(86) was of smaller account, but of much greater value. That city, on the- 
coast of Phcenicia, was illustrated by the study of the civil law, which opened 
the surest road to wealth and dignity : the scnools of Beiytus were filJea witb 
the rising spirits of the ag'e, and many a youth was lost in the earthquake, wbc^ 
might have lived to be me scourge or the guardian of his countiy. In these- 
disasters, the architect becomes & enemy of mankind. The hut of a savage, 
or the tent of an Arab, may be thrown down without injuiy to the inhabitant ; 
and the Peruvians had reason to deride the folly of their Spanish cooquaron,. 
who with so much cost and labour erected their own sepulchres. The ricb 
marbles of a patrician are dashed on his own head : a whole people is buried 
under the ruins of public and private edifices, and the conflaeration is kindled 
and propagated by the innumerable fires which are necessary for the subsbteooe 
and manumctures of a great ci^. Instead of the mutual sympathy which might 
comfort and assist the distressed, they dreadfully experience the vices uid 
passions which are released from the fear of punishment : the tottering houses 
are pillaged by intrepid avarice ; revenge embraces the moment, and selects the 
▼icttm ; and Ibe earth often swallows the assassin or the ravisher in the coo* 
summation of their crimes. Superstition involves the present danger witb 
mvisibie terrors ; and if the ima^e of death may sometimes be subservient tt> 
the virtue or repentance of individuals, an afirigbted people is more foicibly 
moved to expect the end of the world, or to deprecate witb servile homage m^ 
wjath of an avenring Deity. 

[A. D. 543.] III. Ethiopia and Egypt have been stigmatbed in eveiy agc^ 
as the original source and seminary of the plague.(87) In a damp» hot, ttatr* 
Bating air, this African fever is generated from the putiefection of animal sub* 
stances, and especially from the swarms of locusts, not leas destructive to maB«> 
kind in their death than in their lives. The fatal disease which depopulated 
the earth in the time of Justinian and his successors,(88) first appeared in the 
neighbourhood of Pelusium, between the Serbonian hoe and the Eastern channel 
of the Nile. From thence, tracing as it were a double path, it ^read to the 
East over Syria, Persia, and the Indies, and penetrated to the West, along the 
coast of Africa, and over the continent of Europe. In the spring of the second 
year, Constantinople, during three or four months, was visited by the pestilence r 
and Procopius, who observed its progress and symptoms with the eyes of » 
physician,(89) has emulated the skiU and dilyence of Thucydldes in the de» 
scription ol the plague of Athens. (90) The infection was sometimes announced 
by the visions of a distempered fancy, and the victim despaired as soon as he 
had heard the menace and felt the stroke of an invisible spectre. But the 
greater number, in their beds, in the streets, in their usual occupation, were-' 

(86) The vniveiiity, qpl6iido«r, and ruin of Benma, ve ealebrafeed by Heliieeclitf (p. 351—356), as an 
caaential part of Um hiatory of the Boman law. It waa overthrown ia the iweniy-flfth year of Juatlniao* 
A. D. 551, July 9, (Theophanea, p. 1«) ; but Afaihiaa (L U. p. 51, 58,) aoapeocla the earthquake Ull he ha> 
achieved the tiallaa war. 

(th) I have readwkh pteaaare Mead'a abort, bat elegaiit treatiae eoaoemhif Peetilentlai DIaoilleia,. 
the vlUth edlUon, London, 1788. 




(89) Dr. Friend (Htat. Medidn. In Opp. p. 41<^-499, Load. 1733,) ia aatlided that ProeopiiM moat have 
atodled phyric, from hia knowledm and nae of technical woida. Yet many woida that aro now Bci«tlAo^ 
were oommon and proper tai the Greelt idiom. 

(90) See Thueydldea, 1. ii. e. 47-54, p. 187—133, edit. Dnker, and the poetical deaeriptioa of Um aame 
plague by Lucrettua (1. tL 1136— 13B4). I waa indebted to Dr. Hunter fbr an elabofaie oomaMotary cm 
iMa nan of Thacydbica, a quarto of 600 pafea (Veoet 1603, apud Juniaa), which waa ptooou n eed In St. 
Mark'a library by Fablna PaulUnot UUoenali,a phyalcian and pblloaopher. 



IW^ THE DECLINE AND FALL 

nrprised by a slight fever ; so slight indeed, that neither the pulse nor Urn 
cowur of the patient ^ave any signs of the approaching daneer. The lame, the 
next, or the succeeding day, it was declared by the swelling of the glands* 

Sirticularly those of the groin, of the arm-pits, and under the ear ; and when 
( je buboes or tumours were opened, they were found ta contain a eoalj or 
black substance, of the size of a lentil. If they came to a iust swelling and 
suppuration, the patient was saved by this kind and natural discbaige of the 
iinurbid humour. But if they continued hard and dry, a mortification quickly 
•ensued, and the fifth day was commonly the term of his life. The (ever was 
often accompanied with lethaigy or delirium ; the bodies of the sick were 
covered with black pustules or carbuncles, the symptoms of immediate death • 
and in the constitutions too feeble to produce an eruption, the vomiting of blood 
«vas followed by a mortification of the bowels. To pregnant women the plague 
«ras generally mortal : yet one infant was drawn alive from his dead mother, 
and three mothers survived the loss of their infected foetus. Youth was the 
jnost perilous season; and the female sex was less susceptible than the male ; 
^ut every rank and profession was attacked with indiscriminate rage, and many 
«f those who escaped were deprived of the use of their speech, without being 
-eecure from a return of the di8order.(91) The physicians of Constantinople 
<were zealous and skilful : but their art was baffled by the various symptoms 
and pertinacious vehemence of the disease : the same remedies were productive 
of contrary effects, and the event capriciously disappointed their prognostics of 
death or recovery. The order of funerals, and the right of sepulchres, were 
confounded ; those who were left without friends or servants lay unburjed in 
the streets or in their desolate houses ; and a magistrate was authorized to 
collect the promiscuous heaps of dead bodies, to transport them by land or 
«rater, and to inter them in deep pits beyond the precincts of the city. Their 
own danger, and the prospect of public distress, awakened some remorse in the 
minds or the most vicious of mankind ; the confidence of health again revived 
4heir passions and habits ; but philosophy must disdain the observation of Pro- 
copius, that the lives of such men were guarded by the peculiar favour of fortune 
or providence. He foigot, or perhaps he secretly recollected, that the plague 
liaa touched the person of Justinian himself; but the abstemious diet of the 
emperor may suggest, as in the case of Socrates, a more rational and honourable 
xause for his recoveiT.(92) During his sickness the public consternation was 
expressed in the habits of the citizens : and their idleness and despondence 
.occasioned a general scarcity in the capital of the East. 

[A. D. 542—594.] Contagion is the inseparable sjrmptom of the plague ; 
which, by mutual respiration, is transfused from the infected persons to the 
Junes and stomach of those who approach them. While philosophers believe 
and tremble, it is singular, that the existence of a real dai^er should have been 
•denied by a people most prone to vain and imaginary tecrors.(93) Yet the 
.fellow-citizens of^Procopius were satisfied by some short and partial experience, 
)that the infection could not be gained by the closest conversation :(94) and this 
{Mrsuasion might support the assiduity of friends or physicians in the care of the 
•ick, whom inhuman prudence would have condemned to solitude and despair. 
£ut the fatal security, like the predestination of the Turks, must have aided 



(01) Thocvdidet (c. 51,) aArnis, thai the infection coaM only be once taken; but ETacriiu, who had 
JuBiljr ezjperience of the plague, obaervM, that aome peraona irho bad eacaped the flrat, sunk under the 
second attack : and thii repetition la confirmed by Fablua Paullinua (p. 588). 1 obaerve, that on thia head 



T^hfiiciana are divided : and the nature and operation of the diaeaae may not always be aimilar. 

W U waa thoa that Bocrates had been eaved by hia temperanee in the plague of Athena (Aul. Oeiliua. 
Koet. AtUe. ii. 1). Dr. Head acoounta for the peculiar aalubrity of reiiftottB booaea, by Um two advan- 
tagea of eecluaion and abatinence (p. 18, IQ). 

(99) Mead provee that the plaiue ii contagiona from Thucydides, Lueretlua, Aristotle, Galen, and com 



«wm experience (p. 10-40) ; and he refutea (Preface, p. ii— xiii.) the contrary opinion of the French pby 
flUana who visited MaraeiUes in Uie year 1790. Yet these were the recent and enllchtened apectalora of 
« plague whieh, in a few months, swept away 50,000 inhabitants (sur la Pesta de MaraeiUe, Parts, 178S) 
«r a dty that, In the proaent hour of prosperity and trade, contains no more than 00,000 souls. (Neckar, 
• mu lea Plaanees, tom. i. p. 831). «- ■- -v 

(04) The strong assertiooaof Prooopiua. »r< ra^ mdm wn yap tSwn. are oTarUiniwn by tbe aubeeqacnt 
.•zperience of Evagriua. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 161 

4^ pfogrea of the contagion, and those salutary precautions to which Europe 
18 indebted for her safety, were unknown to the ^vernment of Justinian. No 
restraints were imposed on the free and frequent intercourse of the Roman pio- 
▼inces ; from Persia to France, the nations were mingled and infected by wars 
and emigrations ; and the pestilential odour which lurks for years in a bale of 
-cotton was imported, by the abuse of trade, into the most distant reeions* The 
mode of its propantion is explained by the remaik of Pfocopius himself, that 
-it always spread from the sea-coast to the inland country ; the most sequestered 
islands and mountains were successively visited ; the places which escaped the 
.fuiy of its first passajge, were alone exposed to the contaeion of the ensuing 
year. The winds miffht diffuse that subtile venom ; but unless the atmosphere 
-be previously disposed for its reception, the plague would soon expire m the 
cola or temperate climates of the earth. Such was the universal corruption of 
the air, that the pestilence which burst forth in the fifteenth year of Justinian 
•was not checked or alleviated by any difference of the seasons. In time, its 
first malignity was abated and aispersed : the disease alternately lanpruished 
and revived ; but it was not till the end of a calamitous period of fihy-two 
•years, that mankind recovered their health, or the air resumed its pure and 
salubrious quality. No (acts have been preserved to sustain an account, or 
even a conjecture, of the numbers that penshed in this extraordinary nunlality. 
1 only find, that during three months, nve, and at length ten, thousand persons 
died each day at Constantinople : that many cities of the East were left vacant, 
and that in several districts of Italy the harvest and the vintage withered on the 
•ground. The triple scouige of war, pestilence, and famine, afflicted the subjects 
of Justinian, and his reign ts disgraced by a visible decrease of the human «pe- 
•cies, which has never neen repaired, in some of the fairest countries of the 
«lobe.(96) 



CHAPTER XLIV.* 

)ldea of the Roman juritprudence—Tke laws ofjhe kingg—The twelve tables 
of the deeewrnrs — Hie laws of the people — jhe decrees of the senate — The 
edicts of the magistrates and emperors — Authority of the Chilians — CodCf 
pandects^ nffoelSi and instUvtes of Justinian : — I. RiAis <f persons — II. Rights 
of things — III. Private injuries and actions^lV. Crimes and punishments. 

The vain titles of the victories of Justinian are crumbled into dust : but the 
name of the legislator is inscribed on a fair and everlasting monument. Under 
"^his reign, and by his care, the civil jurisprudence was digested in the immortal 
works of the Code, the Pandects, and the Institutes :(i) the public reason 
of the Romans has been silently or studiously transfused into the domestic insti- 
tutions of Europe,(2) and the laws of Justmian still command the respect or 

(99) After loine figures of rhetoric, the mnda of the tea, kc. Procoplai (Anecdot c. 18,) mterapn a 
onto definite aceoont : that inptaSas uvpttiSitv ^ptat bad been exterminated under the reign of the 
Imperial demon. The eznreMfon is oMcnre In grammar and arithmetic ; and a literal tnterpretallon 
'would produce aeTermt millions of millions. Alemannua (p. 800 >nd Cousin (torn. IIL p. 178,) translate 
I ** two hundred millloos ;** but 1 am ignorant of their motlres. If we drop the nvpioias, the 



femainlng MvptaSvv jcvpiaf, a myriad of myriads, would fttralsh one hundred millions, a number not 
wholly inadmiflBible. 

(1) The civUlans of the darker ages have established an absurd and Incnroprehensible mode of quoca- 
tion, which is supported by authority and custom. In their reftrenoes to the Code, the Pandects, and tlie 
Institutes, they mention the number, not of the hook^ but only of the law ; and content themselves with 
reciting the first words of the HtU to which it behMip; and of these Utles Uiere are more than a thousand. 

J[«adewig ViL Justinlaoi, p. 908, wishes to shalie off Uiis pedantic yuke ; and I have dated to adopl th 

simple and rattonal meUmd of numbering the book, the title, and the law.t 

(S) Germany, Bohemia, Hungary, Poland, and Scotland, have received them as common law or reason ; 

Jn T^nce, Italy, Ifcc they poassss a direct or indirect Infiuence; and they wera respected In England. 

<«hMn Stephen tc Edward I., our national Justinian <Dttck. de Usfi et Auctorttate Juris Clvilis, L 11. c. 1. 8 
—15 Helnecel js, Hist. Juris Germankl, c 3, 4. No. S5— 1S4, and the legal historians of mch countfrU 



Ifift THE DECLINE AND FALL 

obedience of independent nations. Wise or fortunate is the prinpe wiio coil- 
nects bis own reputation with the honour and interest of a perpetual order of- 
men. The defence of their founder is the first cause, which in eveiy age ha»< 
exercised the zeal and industiy of the civilians. They piously commemorate 
his virtues; dissemble or deny his failings; and fiercely chastise the guilt or 
folly of the rebels who presume to sully the majesty of the puipte. The idola^ 
try of love has provoked, as it usually happens, the rancour of opposition ; the 
character of Justinian has been exposed to the blind vehemence <^flatteiy and 
' invective, and the iifjustice of a sect (the AtUi-Tribofdam) has refused all praise 
and merit to the prmce, bis ministers, and his laws.(3) Attached to no party,, 
interested only for the tnith and candour of bistoiy, and directed by the most 
temperate and skilful guides,(4) I enter with just diffidence on the subject of 
civil law, which hasexbaustea so many learned lives, and clothed the walls of 
^sucb spacious libraries. In a single, it possible, in a short chapter, I i^all trace 
the Roman jurisprudence fiom Romulus to Justinian,(6) appreciate the labours 
of that emperor, and pause to contemplate the jprinciples ofa science so impor* 
tant to the peace and nappiness of society. The laws of a nation form the most 
instructive portion of its history ; and, although I have devoted myself to write- 
the annals of a declining roooarcfay, 1 shall embrace the occasion to breathe^ 
the pure and invigorating air of the republic. 

The primitive government of Roroe(6) was composed with some political^ 
skill, of an elective kii|ig, a council of nobles, and a general assembly of the 
people. War and religion were administered by the supreme magistrate ; and 
be alone proposed the Taw^ which were debated in the senate, and finally i^tj- 
fied or rejected by a minority of votes in the thirty curia or parishes of tbe cit^*. 
Romulus, Numa, and Servius TuUius, are celebrated as the most ancient legis- 
lators ; and each of them claims his peculiar part in the threefold division of 
jurisprudence.(7) The laws of marriage, the* education of children, and the 
authority of parents, which maj seem to draw their origin from nature itself,. 
are ascribed to the untutored wisdom of Romulus. The law of nations and oC 
religious worship, which Nuroa introduced, was derived from bis nocturnal con- 
yerse with the nymph Egeria. The civU law is attributed to the experience of 
Servius : be balanced the rights and fortunes of the seyen classes of citizens ; 
and guarded, by fif^y new regulations, the observance of contracts and the 
punishment of crimes. The stale, which he had inclined toward a democracy^ 
was changed by the last Tarquin into lawless despotism : and when the kingly 
office was abolished, the patricians engrossed the benefits of freedom. The 
royal laws became odious or obsolete ; the mysterious deposite was silently 
preserved by the priests and nobles ; and at the end of sixty years, the citizens* 
of Rome stul complained, that they were ruled by the arbitrary sentence of the 
magistrates. Yet the positive in^itutions of the Kinfi;shad blended themselves 
with the public and private manners of the city ; some fragments of that venerable 

(3) Francis Bottomail,a learned and acute lawyer of Uie xvith century, wished to morUry Cujacrn* 
— d to pleaa e the Clmncelior de I'Hoepital. Hie Antl-Trlbonianus (which I have never been able to pro- 
cure) waa publiBbed in French in 1608 ; and hii aeet was propacated in Geimany (Heineccius, Onp. torn, 
itt. ^UofeTSl. p. 171-183).* '^ 

(4) At the bead of these guides I shall respectfully place Uie leaned and perspieuoos Heineccios, |u 
German proAssor, who died at Halle in Uie year 1741 (see his Etofe in the NouveUe BibUoU4que G«v- 
nanUiue, tem. ii. p. 51r-64). His ample worlEs Imve been collected in el^ volumes 4to. Geneva, 1743— 
1748. The treatises which I have seoaraiely used are, 1. Historia Juris Romani et Germanici, Lu|d. 
Batav. 1740. 8vo. 8. Syntagma Anuouitatum Eomanam Jurfsprudeatiam Ulnstranlium, 8 vols. Svo. . 
Tn^ect ad Rbenum. 3. Eiemenla Jurw Civills secundum Ordinem InsUtutionum, Lugd. Bat 17Sl,8vo. 
4. Elementa J. C. secundum Ordinem Pandectarttm,TraJect 1778, 8vo. 3 vols.t 

(5) Our original text Is a frapnent de Origlne Juris (Pandect I. i. Ut U.) of Famponius, a Boman 
lawyer, who lived under the Antoninos (Hdnecc. torn. iit. syll. ill. n. 66— 196). It has been abridged, 
and probably oomipied, by Triboniad, and since restored by Bynkersboek (Opp. torn. i. p. 879—304). 

(6) The consUtnilonal hlsmry of the klnnis of Rome may be studied in the first book of Li vy, and more 
copiously in Dkmysius Halicamaasensls (I. ii. p. 80-^M. 119—130, 1. Iv. n. 198-«»), who somcthnes 
tauaya the character of a rhetorician and a Greek.^ . 

(7) This thrselbld diviskm of the law was applied to the three Roman kings by Justas Lipsios (Opp. 
torn. It. p. 8791 ; is adopted by Graviaa (Origlnes Juris Clvllto, p. 88, Edit Lips. 1737) ; and la rehictaatlj^ 



OF THK ROMAN £MPIR£. 1S9 

jiiri8pnidenoe(8) wen compaled by the diligence of antiquarians,(9) and tbove 
tfrentj texts still speak the rudeness of the relaa^ic idiom of the Latins.(10^ 

1 shall uot repeat the well-known story of the Decemvirs,^! 1^ who sullied by^ 
their actions the honour of inscribing op brass, or wood, or ivory, the twelvs 
TiBLES of the Roman laws.(13) They were dictated by the rigid and jealous 
spirit of an aristocracy, which bad yielded with reluctance to the just demands 
of the people. But the substance of the twelve tables was adapted to the state 
of the city ; and the Romans had emeiged from barbansm* since they were 
capable of studying and embracing the institutions of their more enlightened 
neighbours.^ A wise tUphesiap was driven by envy from his native countiy r 
beroie he could reach the shores of Latium, he had observed the various form» 
of human nature and civil society ; he imparted his knowledge to the legislators 
of Rometand a statue was erected in the ibrum to the perpetual memory of 
Hermodorus.(l3) The names and divisions of the copper-money, the sole coin 
of the infant state, were of Dorian origin :(1 4) the harvests of Campania 
and Sicily relieved the wants of a people whose agriculture was ollen mter- 
Tupted by war and faction : and since the trade was e8tab]ished,(iS) the depu* 
ties who saOed from the Tiber, might vetum from the same harbours witli a 
more precious caigo of political wisdom. The colonies of Great Greece had 
transported and improved the arts of their motber-countiy. Cuma and Rbe* 

S'umy Crotona andxarentunu Agiigentum and Syracuse, were in the rank of 
e most flourishing dties. The disciples of Pythagoras applied philosophy ta 
the use of government ; the unwritten laws of Charondas accepted the aid of 
poetiy and music9(l6) and Zaleucus framed the republic of the Locrians, which 
stood without alteration above two hundred years. (17) From a similar motive 
of nation^ pride^ both Livy and Dionysius are willing to believe, that the depu* 
ties of Rome visited Athens under the wise and splendid administration of 



(8) TlM IKM uieleiit Gode or DIM wm itrM Jiu P^pirim 
rho flourMMd Bomewbal b«Are or alter ttw A^ri^^v^ini. (Pandect 
!vep Bynkerriioek (lom. L p. 984. S8S,) and II«iiiecclas (Hkl. J. C 



'MtriamMi, from die Urat comiiller, Pstpirfoa^ 
Pandect. LLUt-U.) THebett Judicial cfitica, 

. _, , _,^_ „ Jt. J. C. R- J. Lc. 16, 17, and Opp. uun. iiLmfh 

_ _ It. Dk 1—6,) give credit to this tale of Pomponius, withoat eulBeieDtly adverting to the value and 
raiitjr of aocb a aaonunMnt of tbe third century, of the Otttorete city. I ranch nupeoi tiwt the<;altt» 
FapMttB. the PontUia Mazimva, who revived tbe Inwa of Noma (Dknya. Hal. K UL p. 171), left only a» 
oial tradition ; and that Uw Jus Paplriaaum of Granius Flaecus (Pandect 1. 1. tit zvi. leg. 144,) was not 
a eomowntary, hot an origioal work, compiled In tbe tUne of Cesar (Oenaoiin. de Die Natali, I. ill. p. 13. 
Dakar de Latinllate J. C. p. 157).* 

. (9) A pompow. though feeMe allempc, to restore tbe original, Is made in the HisCoire de la Jurispm- 
dence Romaine oi Terasson, p. S^— 7S, Faris, 1790, folio ; a work of more promise than performance. 

(10) In the year 1444, seven or dght tables of braai weredug up between Cortona and Oublo. A part 
of thoM, for the reit is Etrasean, represents tbe primitive state of tbe Pelasgic letters aod language, wnk:h 
are ascdhed by Herodotus to that distrkt of Italy (1. Less, 57, SB): tboa|h this dlfltoitt passage mmrhe 
explained of a Crestona In Thrace (Notes de Xarcber, torn, t p. 856—981). The savage dialect of tbo 
Kugublne taUeslbas exercised, and may still ehide, the divination of eriticiaai ; but the root is undoubtedly 
Iistin, of the same age and characier as the daliare Carmen, which in tbe time of Horace, none ooaM 
understand. The Roman idiom, by an infusion of Doric and JEolic Greek, was gradually ripened into 
the style of tbe xii tables, of the DuUlian oohimn, of Enntus, of Terence, and of Cicero (Gruier, Inscript 
tom.1 p^ exlli. BclpionMaflbi, IstorU Diplomadca, p. 341-^ BibUotiidtitte Itallque, torn. ill. p. 30^1, 
174— 9(0, torn. xlv!pri—53).t 

(11) Compare LIvy cL Ul. e. 31-50.) with Dionysius HalicamaswiMis (L x. p. 644 ; xl. p. 6B1). How 
eondse and animated Is tbe Boman— now prolix and Ufeleai is tbe Greek ! Yet be has admirably Judged 
tbe masters, and defined the rules, of historical composition^ 

(13) From tbe historians, Helneocius (Hist J. R. 1. L No»96,) mafatalm that the tvrdve tables were of 
brsm mirat: in tbe text of Pomponlus we read a*«rM«: for whicl^ Bcaliger has substituted rob^rtoB 
(Bynkerriwek, p. 886). Wood, brass, and ivory, mteht be suooearively employed.^ 

(13) Bis exile is mentioned by Cicero (Tnsculan. uncstlon. v. 36), his statue by Pliny (Hist Nat xxxl v. 



(15) Tbe Romans, or their allies, sailed as far as the fair promontory of AfVIca (Polyb.1. liL p. 177» 
odit Casaubon, folio). Tbefar voyages to Cumie, he are noticed by LIvy and Dionysius. 

(16) This circumstance would atone prove the antiquity of Charonrfas, tbe legislator of Rheeium and 
Catana, who by a strange error of Diodorus Blculus (torn. 1. 1. xU. p. 485—483,) Is celebrated king after* 
ward as the author of the policy of Tburlura. 

(17) Zaleucus, whose existence has been rashly attacked, bad tbe merit and gtory of converting a band 
of outlaws, the Locrians, Into tbe most virtuous and orderly of the Greek republics (see two Meroolres of 
the Baron de St Croix, sur la Legislation de la Grande Gr^ ; Mem. de 1* Acndemie, lom. xllL p. 978— 
33S). But the laws of Zaleucus and Charondas, which imposed on Diodorus and Biobcus, are tl» 
■purlons oompositlon of a Pytbagorenn sophist, whose iVaud has been detected hg 4tae criiical angscity of 



164 THE DECLINE AND PALL 

Pericles ; and the laws of Solon were transfused into the twelve tables. If 
such an embassy had indeed been received from the Barbarians of Hesperia, 
the Roman name would have been familiar to the Greeks before the n*ign of 
Alexander ;(18) and the faintest evidence would have been explored and cele- 
brated by the curiosity of succeeding times. But the Athenian monuments are 
silent ; nor will it seem credible that the patricians should undertake a long and 
.perilous navigation to copy the purest model of a democracy. In the com- 
parison of the tables of Solon with those of the decemvirs, some casual resem- 
blance may be found : some rules which nature and reason have revealed to 
eveiT society ; some proofs of a common descent from Egy^t or Ph(snicia.(19) 
But m all the great lines of public and private jurisprudence, the legislators ii 
Home and Athens appear to be strangers or adverse to each other. 

Whatever might be the origin of toe merit of the twelve tablesy(20) they 
■obtained among the Romans that blind and partial reverence which the lawyers 
of every counSy delight to bestow on their municipal institution. The study 
is recommended by Cicero(31^ as equally pleasant and instructive. "They 
amuse the mind by the lememurance of ola words and the portrait of ancient 
.manners ; they inculcate the soundest principles of jg^ovemment and morals ; 
and I am not afraid to affinn, that the brief composition of the Decemvirs sur- 
passes in genuine value the libraries of Grecian imilosophy. How admirable," 
^«TS Tully, with honest or affected prejudice, ** is the wisdom of our ancestors. 
We alone are the masters of civil prudence, and our superiority is the more 
^conspicuous, if we deign to cast our eyes on the rude and almost ridiculous 
jurisprudence of Dracon» of Solon, and of Lycuiim/' The twelve tables were 
HXMnmitted to the memory of the young and the meditation of the old ; they 
were transcribed and illustrated with learned diligence ; they had escaped the 
Barnes of the Gauls, they subsisted in the aee of Justinian, and their subsequent 
loss has been imperfectly restored by the labours of modem critics. (22) But 
although these venerable monuments were considered as the nde of rignt and 
the fountain of justice,(S3^ they were overwhelmed by the weight and variety 
of new laws, which, at tne end of five centuries, became a grievance more 
intolerable than the vices of the city.(S4) Three thousand brass plates, the 
acts of the senate and people, were deposited in the Capitol ;(S5) and some of the 
acts, as the Julian law against extortion, surpassed the numoer o( a hundred 
chapters.(36) The Decemvirs had neglected to import the sanction of Zaleu- 
'Cus, which so long maintained the integrity of his republic. A Locrian who 
4>ropo6ed any new law stood forth in the assembly ot the people with a cord 

18} I wlze the opportanhy of tracins the profrea of Uiis national Intercourw : 1. Herodotus and Thu- 
. lidea (A. U. C. 3dl>— 350,) appear Ignorant of the name and exiitence of Borne (Joiepb. contn Apkm. 
torn. 11. 1. 1, e. 13, p. 444, ediL HaTereanp). -9. Tbeopompus (A. U. G. 400, Ptin. ill. 9.) mentkNM die 
invasion of the Gaala, which Is noUeed In looser terms by Ileraclldes Ponticns. (Pluurch in Camlllo, p. 
903, edit. H. Stephen.) 3. The real or fkbolouB embassy of the Boroans to Alexander (A. U. C. 430), ■ 
• attested by Clitarcus (Plln. Hi. 9), by Arlstusand Asclepiades (Arrlan, I. v\\. p. 804, SOS), and by Memnon 
of Heraclea (apod Photlum, cod. ccxxtv. p. 735), though uciUy denied by liivy. 4. Theophrastus (A. U. 
C. 440,) primus extemorum allqua de Bomanis dlligentlus scripsit (Plln. IH. 9). 5. Lyoophron (A. U. C. 
480-^500) scattered the llrst seed of a Trojan colony, and the fable of Uie ^Eneld (Cassandra, 1230—12990). 
IV nu BaKaomis mairpa km ftovafxtav 
AafiovTtf. 
A bold prediction before Uie end of the flnst Pnnic war!* 

(10) The tenth table, de roodo sepultars, was borrowed from Bolon (Cicero de Leglbus, li. 83-^, tiM 
ftirtum per lancem et llcium coooeptum. Is derived by Helnecclas from the manners of Athens (AntI* 
qniUt Bom. torn. IK p. 107—175). The right of killing a nocturnal thief, was declared by Moses, Solon, 
and the Decemvin (Bzodus, xzll. 3. Demosthenes contra Timocratem, torn. I. p. 736, edit. Beiske. 
Macrob. SatumaUa, I. L c. 4, Collatk) Legum Mosakanim et Bomananini, tit. vli. No. 1, p. 218, ediL 
€annegleler).t 



•cydi 




irlna (Origines J. C. p. 890—307.) and Terasson (Hist, de la Jurisprudence Bomalne, p. 94-305}.t 
(S3) Ftnle cqul lurls (Tacit. Annal. HI. 87) .4 Pons omnis puUlcl et prtvati juris (T. Llv. Hi. 34). 

(34) De prlncipils Juris, et quibus modls ad banc raultltudlnero inflnitam ac varleiatem legnm pervea- 
turn sit olenw disseram (Tadt. Annal. HI. 85). This deep disquisition fills only two pages, but they an 
the pages of Tacitus. With equal sense, but with leas energy, LIvy (Ui. 34,) bad complained, In hoc 
4mmensoallarum super alias acenratarum legum cumuW) &c 

(35) Suetonius In veepaslano, c. 8. 
(30) Cicero ad FamUlares, vMl. 8 



OF THE ROMAN ExMPlRE. 166 

afDund his neck, and if the law was rejected, Ibe ionovator was insUotJy stran* 
f^led. 

The Decemvirs had been naraed» and their tables were approved by an 
assembly of the centuriest to which riches preponderated against numbers. To 
the first class of Romans, the proprietors of one hundred thousand pounds of cop- 
per)(%7) ninety-eight votes were assigned, and only ninety-five were lefl for 
the six inferior classes, distributed accordine to their substance by the artful 

E>licy of Servius But the tribunes soon established a more specious and popu* 
r maxim, that every citizen has an equal right to enact the laws, which he is 
hound to obey. Instead of the ceaturies^ they convened the In6et; and the 
patricians, after an impotent struggle, submitted to the decrees of an assembly, 
ID which their votes were confounded with those of the meanest plebeians. 
Yet as long as the (ribes successively passed over narrow bridgeSf{JtS) and gave 
their voices aloud, the conduct of each citizen was exposed to Uie eves and ears 
of his friends and countrymeiu The insolvent debtor consulted tne wishes of 
his creditor ; the client would have blushed to oppose the views of his patron ; 
the general was followed by bis veterans, and the aspect of a grave ms^istrate 
was a living lesson to the multitude. A new method of secret ballot abolished 
the influence of fear and shame, of honour and interest, and the abuse of freedom 
accelerated the progress of anarchy and despotism.(^29) The Romans bad 
aspired to be equal ; they were levelled by the equality of servitude ; and the 
dictates of Augustus were patiently ratified by the formal consent of the tribes 
or centuries. Once, and once only, he experienced a sincere and strenuous 
opposition. His subjects had resigned all political liberty; they defended the 
freedom of domestic life. A law which enforced the obligation, and strength- 
ened the bonds of marriage, was clamorously rejected : Propertius in the arms 
of Delia, applauded the victoiy of licentious love ; and tne project of reform was 
suspended till a new and more tractable generation had arisen in the world.(30) 
Such an example was not necessary to instruct a prudent usurper of the mb- 
chief of popular assemblies : and their abolition, which Augustus had silently 
prepared, was accomplished without resistance, and almost without notice, on 
the accession of his succes8or.(31) Sixty thousand plebeian legislators, whom 
numbers made formidable, and poverty secure, were supplanted oy six hundred 
senators who held their honours, their fortunes, and their lives, by the clemency 
ef the emperor. The loss of executive power was aUeviated by the gift of 
legislative authority ; and Ulpian might assert, after the practice of two hundred 
veani, that the decrees of the senate obtained the force and validity of laws. 
In the times of freedom, the resolves of the people had often been dictated by 
the passion or error of the moment : the Cornelian, Pompeian, and Julian laws, 
were adapted by a sir^le hand to the prevailing disorders : but the senate, 
under the rei^n of the Cesars, was composed of magistrates and lawyers, and 
in questioas of private jurisprudence, the integrity of their judgment was seldom 
perverted by fear or interest.(32) 

Dinnysius, with Arbathnot, and moat of the moderm (except Btoemchmldt de Ponderflnia, Ace. 
—140,) represent the 100,000 asses by 10,000 Attic draelmie, or aomewliat more than 300 pounds 
iteiUnf . But their calculation can apply only to the laUer times, when the as was diminished to l-94lh 
^r Its ancient weight: nor can I believe that in the first ages, however desUtute of the precious metaJs, a 
single ou lue of silver could have been exchanged for seventy pounds of copper or brses. A more simple 
and ra.ioiial metlmd, b to value the copper itself, according to the present rate, and after comparing the 
mint aiid the market price, the Roman and avolrdupob weight, the primitive as or Rooian pound of 
copper way be appreciated at one English shilling, and the 100,000 asses of the first class amounted to 
5000 pounds sterling. It will appear lh>m the same reelEOolng, that an ox was sold at Room for five 
pounds, a sheep for ten shillings, and a quarter of wheat for one pound ten shillings (Festus, p. 330, edit 
Dacier. Plin. Hist. Natur. xviii.4) ; nor do I see any reaaon to reject those ooasoqaences, wbieh moderate 
our ideas nf the poverty of the first Romans.* 

(98) Consult the common writers on the Roman Comiiia, eepeciallv Sigootos and Beaufort Spanbeim 
(do Prasianiili et UsA Numlsmatum, torn. li. dissert x. p. iSSt, 19Q,)sbowN, on a curious medal, the Clsta, 
Vontes, Sepu, Diribltor, Jte. 

(99) Cicero (de Legibi's, iii. IS, 17, 18,) debates this ooosUtutional quostioo, and assigns to his brother 
Quintus tlie most unpopular side. 

(30) Prae tumultu recusantium preferre non potui (Sueton. In Angnst e. 34). See Piopertiua, 1. li. eleg. 
4L Heiiieochis, in a separate history, has exbausied the whole aubject of tlie Julian and ^pian-Poppcan 
laws. (Opp. torn. vii. P. 1. p. 1—479). 

(31) Tacit Annal. i. 15. LIpsius. Excniwn B. in Tacltttn.t 

/39) Non ambigitur senatum Jus fncer^ posse, is tlM decision of Ulpian (I. xvl. ad Sdict in Pan 



(27) Di 
ji. 137— IH 



156 TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

The silence or ambiguity of tbe laws was supplied by the occasional edictc 
of those magistrates who were invested with tbe honours of the state. (33)t This 
ancient prerogative of the Roman kings, was transferred, in their respective 
offices, to the consuls and dictators, the censors and pretors ; and a similar 
right was assumed by tbe tribimes of the people, tbe edues, and the proconsuls 
At Rome, and in the provinces, the duties of the subject, and the intentions of 
the governor, were proclaimed ; and the civil jurisprudence was reformed by 
the annual edicts of the supreme judge, the praetor of the city.^ As soon as he 
ascended the tritiunal, he announced by the voice of tbe crier, and afterward 
inscribed on a white wall, the rules which be proposed to follow in the decision 
of doubtful cases, and the relief which his equity would afford from the precise 
rigour of ancient statutes. A principle of discretion more congenial to monarchy 
was introduced into the republic : the art of respecting the name, and eluding 
the efficacy, of tbe laws, was improved by successive prstors ; subtleties and 
fictions were invented to defeat the plainest meaning of the Decemvirs, and 
where the end was salutary, tbe means were frequently absurd. The secret 
or probable wish of the dead was suffered to prevail over tbe order of succes- 
sion and the forms of testaments ; and the claimant, who was excluded from 
the character of heir, accepted with eaual pleasure from an indulgent praetor 
the possession of the goods of bis late Kinsman or benefactor. In the redress 
of private wrongs, compensations and fines were substituted to tbe obsolete 
rigour of the twelve tables ; time and space were annihilated by fiinciful sup- 
positions; and the plea of youth, or fraud, or violence, annulled the obligation^ 
or excused tbe penormance, of an inconvenient contract. A jurisdiction thus- 
vague and arbitrary was exposed to the most dangerous abuse : the substance, 
as well as the form of justice, were o<Ua sacrificed to the prejudices of virtue, 
the bias of laudable affection, and tbe grosser seductions of interest or resent- 
ment. But the errors or vices of each praetor expked with his annual office ; 
such maxims alone as bad been approved by reason and practice were copied 
by succeeding judges ; (he rule ot proceeaing was defined by the solution o£ 
new cases ; and the temptations of imustice were removed by the Cornelian 
law, which compelled the praetor d the year to adhere to the letter and spirit 
of his fint prodamation.(34) It waa reserved for the curiosity and learning of 
Hadrian, to accomplish the desmi which had been conceived by tbe genius of 
Cesar : and tbe prcstorship of Sahrius Julian, an eminent lawyer, was immor- 
talized by the composition of the perpetual edict. This well-digested code 
was ratified by the emperor and the senate ; the long divorce of law and equity 
was at length reconciled : and instead of tbe twelve tables, the perpetual edict 
was fixed as the invariable standard of civil junsprudence.(36) 

From Augustus to Trajan, tbe modest Cesars were content to promulgate 
their edicts in the various characters of a Roman magistrate f*and, in the- 
decrees of tbe senate, the ^nttUi and oratioiu of the prince were respectfully 
inserted. Hadrian(36) appears to have been the first who assumed, without 
diseuise, th^ plenitude ot legislative power. And this innovation, so i^reeable 
to his active mind, wai» countenanced by the patience of the times, ana his long 
absence from the seat of government. The same policy was embraced by 
succeeding monarchs^ and, accordiog to the harsh metaphor of Tertullian^ 

d«ct 1. 1. Ut Ul. lag. •). PompoBlaf tMW tt» enrtiia of tiM people m a tuba bonimim (Pamlect. 1. 1 
tit U. leg. 9).* 

(33) The Jus hoDonrluni of ttie pmton and oUwr nagbiratee, to «rkllf dcflrod in the Latin text of tJio 
Inetitutef <1. 1, tit H. No. 7), and more looeety explained in the Gieek pampbraae of TheophUue (p. 33— 
38, edit. Reltc), who dropa the important word k0»9rmritm4 

(34) Dion CaMiui (torn. 1. 1. xxzvi. p. 100,) fixes tbe perpetual ediele in the year of Rome S8G. Their 
institution, howerer, is ascrihed to the year a85 in tho Acta Diorna, which haye heen puMished from tho- 
papen of Lodovicos Vivee. Their aolhentleitir is topponed or allowed hy Pigbios (Annal. Roman, torn, 
ti. p. 377, 378), Gnevius (ad Sueloo. p. 776), DodweU (Prelecaoo. Cambden, p. 06A,) and Helneocius; but 
a single word, Beutnm Cimbriam, detects tbe fbrgery. <lloyle*s Works, vol. 1. p. 303). 

(35) The history of cdlcu is composed, and tbe text of tbe perpetual edict is resiored, by the mastet . 
hand of Hefaieoclus (Opp. torn. vH. P. il. p. 1— a64);Dln whose reaeaiches I might safely aoquieBce. To 
die Academy of Inserlplioos, IL Bouchaud has given a series of oMmohrs to thislnterasiint aubject of law 
and literatttm.ir 

(30) His laws are Um first in tbe Code. See DodweU (Prslect Cambden, p. 310--3M), who wander* 
limn tbe aui^eclln oonf used reading and fheble pai«doz.tt 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 151 

** (be gloom j and intricate forest of ancient laws was cleared away by the axe 
of royal mandates and cofu/»fti/um«.'*(37) During four centuries, from Hadrian 
to Justinian, the public and private jurisprudence was moulded by the will of 
the sovereign ; and few institutions, either human or divine, were permitted to 
stand on their former basis. The origin of Imperial legislation was concealed 
by the darkness of ages and the terrors of armed desi>otism ; and a double 
fiction was propa^ted by the servility, or perhaps the ignorance, of the civi* 
lians who basked in die sunshine of the Roman and Byzantine courts. I. To 
the prayer of the ancient Cesars, the people or the senate had sometinDes 
granted a personal exemption from the obligation and penalty of particular 
statutes ; and each indulgence was an act of jurisdiction ezercised by the 
republic over the first of her citizens. His humble privilege was at length 
transformed into the preroeative of a tyrant ; and the Latin expression of 
"released from the laws,*\38) was supposed to exalt the emperor above cdl 
human restraints, and to leave his conscience and reason, as the sacred measure 
of his conduct. 3. A similar dependence was implied in the decrees of the 
senate, which, in every reign, defined the titles and powers of an elective 
magistrate. But it was not before the ideas, and even the language, of the 
Romans had been corrupted, that a royal 1aw,(39) and an irrevocable gift of 
the people, were created bj the fancy of Ulpian, or morepropably of Tribonian 
himself ;(40) and the origin of Imperial power, though (alse in fact, and slavish 
in its consequences, was supported on a principle of freedom and justice. 
'' The pleasure of the emperor has the vigour and eflfect of law, since the Roman 
people, by the royal law, have transferred to their prince the full extent ot 
their own power and sovereignty."(4l) The will of a single man, of a child 
perhaps, was allowed to prevail over the wisdom of ages and the inclinations 
of millions ; and the degenerate Greeks were proud to declare, that in his bands 
alone the arbitrary exercise of legislation could be safely deposited. *^ What 
interest or passion," exclaims Theophilus in the court of Justinian, "can 
reach the calm and sublime elevation of the monarch ? he is already master of 
the lives and fortunes of his subjects ; and those who have incurred his dis- 
pleasure, are already numbered with the dead."(43) Disdaining the language 
of flatterTy the historian may confess, that in iquestions of private jurispruaence, 
the absolute sovereign of a great empire can seldom be influenced by any 
personal considerations. Virtue^ or even reason, will suggest to bis impartial 
mind, that he is the guardian of peace and equity, ana diat the interest of 
socie^ is inseparably connected with his own. Under the weakest and most 
vicious reign, the seat of justice was filled by the wisdom and integrity of 
Papinian and Ulpian ;(43) and the purest materials of the Code and Pandect? 
are inscribed witn the names of Caracalla and his ministers.f44) The tyrant 
of Rome was sometimes the benefactor of the provinces. A aag^r terminated 
the crimes of Domitian ; but &e prudence of Nerva confirmed bis acts, which* 

(37) Totam Olam vtterem 6C aqiianeiitem lylvaiii tegnm novi* princlpalium rewriptoram at edietoniis 
•ecufibtta ruseatto et ceditto (Apologeu e. 4, p. 50, edit Havercamp). He proceeda to praiM the recent 
firmnen of Sevenu, who repMlea the uaelea or pernicious lawsi without anf regard to thdr age o» 
authority. 

C38) The eonalitutional mjitoiLegihu S^hOut ti mlabiterpreted by the art or Ignorance of Dion Caa 
aiua (torn. 1. 1. 1111. p. 713). On thia occasion hia editor, Eeimar, jolna the univeraal cenaure which free 
dom and criticism nave pronounced against that davish historian. 

(39) The word (Lex Regia) was atiTi more recent than the thing. The atavea of Oommodua or Cars- 
•caUa would have atarted at the name of royal^.* 

(40) See Orarlna (Opp. p. 901— 51S,) and^Beaulbrt OKepobllque Komaine, torn. I. p. 8S5— 974). He 
has made a proper uae of two diaaertatlona by John nedericic Gronovtus and NoodC, hotik translated, 
with Taluahle notes, by Barbeyrac, d vota. ISmo. 1731. 

(41) Inatitnt 1. 1. Ut ii. No. 6, Pandect. 1. 1. Ut. Iv. leg. 1, Cod. Juatlnlan, 1. i. tit. zvil. leg. 1, No. 7. Is 
hia Antiquities and Elementa, Heineccioa has amply treated dc conatitutionibua principum. wldeh an 
lUuatrated by Qodttmy (Comment ad Cod. Theodoa. L 1. tit i. 11. ill. ) and Gravina (p. 87— 00).t 

(48) Theophttoa, in Par<bhraa. Gnec. Institut p. 33, 34, edit Reitz. For bla person, time, writing* 
sae the Theophilua of J. B. Myliua, Excurs. iii. p. 1034—1073. 

(43) There is more envy than reason In the complaint of tfacrlnus (Jul. CapltoHn. e. 13). Nefas ease 
tans videri Gommodi et CarecaUe et hominum Imperitorem voluntates. Commodos was made # 
Blvus bv Severus (Dodwell, Prelect viiLp. 334, 335). Yet he occurs only twice hi the Pandects. 

(44) Of Antoninus Caracalla alone, 990 constitutions are extaut in the Code, and with hte father 
ISO. These two prloeoa are Quoted fifty times in the Pandects, and eight in the Institutes (Teraa- 
■on, p. 9BBi, \ 



158 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

in the joy of their delarerance, had been rescinded by an indignant senate.(45) 
Yet in the rucftptflv(46) implies to the consultations of the magistrates, the 
wisest of princes might be deceived by a partial exposition of the case. And 
this abuse, which placed their hasty decisions on the same level with mature 
and deliberate acts of legislation, was ineffectually condemned by the sense 
and example of Trajan. The retcr^ of the emperor, his grants and dtcreesj 
bis edids and pra^natic BanctionSf were subscribed in purple ink,(47) and 
transmitted to tne provinces as general or Special laws, which the magistrates 
were bound to execute and the people to obey. But as their number conti- 
nually multiplied* the rule of otiedience became each day more doubtful and 
obscure, till the will of the sovereign was fixed and ascertained in the Gregorian, 
the Hermoeenian, and the Theodosian codes.* The two first* of which some 
fragments have escaped, were framed by two private lawyers, to preserve the 
constitutions of the pagaii emperors from Hadrian to Constantine. The third, 
which is still extant, was digested in sixteen books by the order of the youn^r 
Theodosius, to consecrate the laws of the Christian princes from Constantine 
to his own reign. But the three codes obtained an equal authority in the 
tribunals ; and any act which was not included in the sacred deposite, might 
be disregarded by the judee as spurious or obsolete.(48) 

Amon^ savage nations, tbe want of letters is imperfectly supplied by the 
use of visible signs, which awaken attention^ and perpetuate the remembrance 
of an;^ public or private transaction. The jurisprudence of the first Romans 
exhibited the scenes of a pantomime ; the words were adapted to the gestures, 
and the slightest error or neg^lect in inejomu of proceeding, was sufiteient to 
annul the nibUanee of the fairest claim. The communion of the marriage-life 
was denoted by tbe necessary elements of fire and water :(49) and the divorced 
wife resigned the bunch of keys, by the deliveiy of which she had been 
invested with the government ot the iamily. The manumission of a son, or a 
slave, was performed by turning him round with a gentle blow on the cheek : 
a work was prohibited by the casting of a stone ; prescription was interrupted 
by tbe breaking of a branch ; the clenched fist was the symbol of a pledge or 
deposite ; the nght band was the gift of faith and confidence. The indenture 
of covenants was a brcAen straw ; weights and scales were introduced into 
every payment, and the heir who accepted a testament, was sometimes 
obliged to snap his fingers, to cast away bis garments, and to leap and dance 
with real or afiected transport. (60^ If a citizen pursued any stolen goods into 
a neighbour's house, he concealed his nakedness with a linen towel, and bid 
his face with a mask or basin, lest he should encounter the eyes of a vii^p^in or 
a roatron.(6l) In a civil action, the plaintiff touched the ear of his witness, 
seized his reluctant adversary by the neck, and implored, in solemn lamentation, 
the aid of his fellow-citizens. The two competitors ^sped each other's hand 
as if they stood prepared for combat betbre the tribunal of the praetor : be 
commanoed them to produce the object of the dispute ; they went, they 
returned widi measured steps, and a clod of earth was cast at his feet to repre- 



(45) Plin. Becirod. Epiatol. z. S8. Sueton. in DomitUn. c S3. 

(40) It wu a maxim of Coii8taDtiD«f contra joa raacripu non valeant (Cod. Theodoa. 1. 1. tit ii. kf . 1^. 
The emperors refuciantly allow aome acnitiny into tlie law and the ftict, some delay, pclitloni dec., but 
tbcw insudkieat remedlei are too nuch In the dlicrecion and at tbe peril of the Judge. 

(47) A compound of vermilion and cinnabar, which marks Uie Imperial diplomas from Leo I. (A. D. 
470, to the fall of tbe Greek empire (BibliothSaue Raiaomide de la Dlptomatlque, torn. i. ji. 90»-^514. 
Lanii, de Eruditione Apoatolorum, tom. 11. p. 790— 7!M). 

(4ft) Schulllnff, Jurbprodentia Ante-Justlnianea. p. 681—718. Ci^acius asalfned to Gregoiy tbe 
reigrw from Hadrian to Gall lenus, and the eonUaualion to hte felkiw* labourer Hermofenes. This genet al 
divUton may be Juat; but they often trespnwed on each other's ground. 

(49) Bcevoia, moat probably O. Gervldius Bcvvola, tbe maater of Papinlan, eonslders this aeceptaneo 
of fire and water as tbe easenoe of marriage (Pandect. 1. zxiv. tit. L leg. S6. «ee Heineccius, Uiat. J. R. 
No. 317}. 

(50) Cicero (de OOcBs, ili. 19,; mav Btkte an ideal case, but 8l Ambroee (de Officila, ill. 8,) appeals to 
tbe practice of his own Umea, which ne understood as a lawyer and a magistrate (Scbulting aa Ulplan. 
Frajpnent UU ixil. No. 88, p. 043, 644).t 

(51) The furtum lance licioque eonoeptum was no longer understood in the time of tbe Antonlnes- 
(Aulus GelUus, xvi. 10). The Attic derivation of HeinecJus (Aotiquitat. Rom. 1. iv Ut i. No. 13-tt); 
is supported by tbe evidence of Arlsto^banes, bis scholiast, and Pollujut 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 16» 

went the 6eld for which thej contended. This occult science of the wordb 
and actions of law, was the inheritance of the pontifli and patricians. Like 
the Chaldean astrologers^ tbejr announced to their clients the dap of business 
and reoose ; these important trifles were interwoven with the religion of Numa : 
and, after tlie publication of the twelve tables, the Roman people were still 
enslaved b^ tne u^rance of judicial proceedings. The treachery of some- 
plebeiau officers at fength revealed the profitable mystery : in a more enlightened' 
age, the legal actions were derided and observed ; and the same antiquity 
which sanctified the practice, obliterated the use and meaning, of this primitive- 
laiK^uage.rss) 

A more liberal art was cultivated, however, by the sages of Rome, who, in a* 
stricter sense, may he considered as the authors of the civil law. The alteration 
of the idiom and manners of the Romans, reordered the style of the twelve 
tables less familiar to each rising generation, and the doubtful passages were* 
imperfectly explained by the study of legal antiquarians. To define the am- 
biguities, to circumscribe the latitude, to apply the principles, to eitend the 
consequences^ to reconcile the real or apparent contradictioos, was a much 
nobler and more important task ; and the province of legislation was silently 
invaded by the expounders of ancient statutes. Their subtle interpretations 
concurred with the equity of the pretor, to reform the tynrmy of the darker 
ages : however strange or intricate the means, it was the aim of artificial 
jurisprudence to restore the simple dictates of nature and reason, and the skill 
of private citizens was usefully employed to undermine the public institutions 
of their country.t The revolution of almost one thousand years, from the 
twelve tables to the reign of Justinian, may be divided into three periods 
almost equal in duration, and distinguished from each other by the mode ot' 
instruction and the character of the civilians. ^63) Pride and ignorance contri- 
buted, during the first period, to confine within narrow limits the science of the 
Roman law. On the public days of market or assembly, the masters of the art 
were seen walking in the forum, ready to impart the needful advice to the- 
roeanest of their leljoW-citizens, from whose votes, on a future occaskm, they 
might solicit a grateful return. As their years and honours increased, they 
seated themselves at home on a chair or throne, to expect with patient gravity 
the visits of their clients, who at the dawn of day, from the town and countiy, 
b^an to thunder at their door. The duties of social life, and the incidents of 
judicial proceeding, were the ordinary sulnect of these ooMultations, and the 
verbal or written opinion of the jurii^annuU was framed accordhv to the rules 
of prudence and law. The youths of their own order and family were per* 
mitted to listen ; their children enjoyed the benefit of more private lessons, and 
the Mucian race was \aog renowned for the hereditary knowledge of the civil 
law. The second period, the learned and splendid age of jurisprudence, may 
be extended from the birth of Cicero to the rem of Severus Alexander. A 
system was formed, schools were instituted, hooks were composed, and botb 
the living and the dead became subservient to the instruction of the student. 
The inpa/rHle of iEIlius Paetus, sumamed Catus, or the Cunning, was preserved 
as the oldest work of jurisprudence. Cato the censor derived some additional 
fame from his legal studies, and those of his son : the kindred appellation of 
Mucius Scsevola was illustrated by three sages of the law ; but the perfection 

(52) In his Oration for Murena (e. 9—13), Ckero taroi into ridiettle tbe forma and myaleriea of \\t» 
eivltlans, wbicli are rapreientod witb more candour by Aulus OelUus (Noct. Attic, zz. 10), Gravina COpp. 
p. 365, 986, 907), and Heineccius (AnUquitaL 1. Iv. tit. vi.)* 

(53) The wttim of Um ciTll lawyers la dedaoed by Pomponlui (da Orislne Jurla Pandect 1. i. tit ii.). 
The moderni have diaeuawd, with learning and crtUeiam, Uiii branch or Literary bijrtory ; and among 
tbeee T have chiefly been cuided by Gravina (p. 41—79,) and Helnecclne (Hlat J. E. No. 113—351). 
Cicero, more especially in hia books de Oratore, de Claris Oratoribns, de Legibus, and the Clavis Cicero* 
niana of EmesU (nnder the names of Jfaoiie, Ice.) afibrd much raiaine and pleasing Infonnasion 
Horace often aUodes to the morning labours of tiie ciTiliani. Berm. L L 10, Epist IL L 109, lU. 

Agricolam iaudat jaria leituniqae perilus 
Subgalll canium, coosuluir uU ostia puisat. 

Boms dulce din fuit et soiemne, recIusA 
Mane domo vigilare, dienli promere iura.^ 



MO THE DECLINE AND FALL 

<of Ae science was ascribed to Serviin Sulptcius their disciBle, and the frkmA 
^ Tull/ ; and the long succession, which shone with equal lustre under (he 
fepublic and under the Gesars, is finally ckxed by the respectable characten 
of Fapinlan, of Paul, and of Ulpian. Their names, and the various titles of 
their productions, have been minutely preserved, and the examjile of Labeo 
may suggest some idea of their diligence and fecundity. That emment lawyer 
'Of the Augustan age, divided the year between the city and countiy, between 
business and composition ; and four handred books are enumerated as the fruit 
of his retirement. Of the collectionB of his rival CapitOy the two hundred and 
My-ninth book is expressly ouoted ; and few teachers could deliver their opi- 
nions in less tlien a centuiy ot vohimes. In the third period, between the reigns 
of Alexander and Justinian, the oracles of iurispruaenoe were alnxist mute. 
The measure of curiositir had b^en filled : the throne was occupied by tyrants 
and Barbarians ; the active spirits were diverted by religious disputes, and the 
professors of Rome, Constantinople, and Berytus, were humbly content to 
repeat the lessons of their more enlightened predecessors. From the slow 
advances and rapid decay of these legal studies, it may be inferred, that they 
inquire a state of peace and refinement. From the multitude of voluminous 
civilians r/ho fill the intermediate space, it is evident, that such studies may be 
pursued, and such worlu mar be performed, with a common share of judgment, 
experience, and industry. The genius of Cicero and Viigil was more sensibly 
felt, as each revolving age had beei> found incapable of producing a similar or 
■a second : but the most eminent teachers of the law were assured of leaving 
disciples equal or superior to themselves in merit and reputation. 

The jurisprudence which had been grossly adapted to the wants of the first 
Romans, was polished and improved m the seventh centuiy of the city, by the 
alliance of Grecian philosophy. The Scsevolas had been taught by use and 
experience ; but Servius Sulpicius^was the first civilian who established his art 
on a certain and general theoirY.(54) For the discernment t>f truth and false- 
hood, he applied, as an infallible rule, the logic of Aristotle and the atoics, 
reduced particular cases to general principles, and diffused over the shapeless 
mass, the light of order and eloquence. Cicero, his contemporary and friend, 
declined the reputation of a professed lawyer ; but the jurisprudence of his 
countiy was acfomed by his incomparable genius, which converts into gold 
«veiT object that it touches. AfWr the example of Plato, he composed a 
republic, and, for the use of his republic, a treatise of laws ; in which he laboura 
to deduce from a celestial origin, the wisdom and justice of the Roman consti- 
tution. The whole universe, according to his soolime hypothesis, form^ one 
immense commonwealth : gods and men, who participate of the same essence, 
are members of the same community: reason prescribes the law of nature and 
nations ; and all positive institutions, however modified by accident or custom, 
are drawn from th^ rule of right, which the Deity has inscribed on every vir- 
tuous mind. From these philosophical mysteries, he mildly excludes the skep- 
tics who refuse to believe, and the epicureans who are unwilling, to act. The 
latter dbdain the care of the republic ; he advises them to slumber in their 
shady gardens. But he humbly entreats that the new academy would be . 
silent, since her bold objections would toor soon destroy the fair and well- 
ordered structure of his lohv system.(56) Plato, Aristotle, and Zeno, he repre- 
sents as the only teachers wno arm and instruct a citizen for the duties of social 
life. Of these, the armour of the stoics(56) was found to be of the firmest 

(54) Cruaui, or inther Cicero hlmielf, pwn w aoB (d« Ontore, 1. 41, 19), an idea of the ^rt or acirnce of 
Jorispmdence, wMcb ihe eloquent, but IIHteraie, Antoniiis (1. SB,) affecta to deride. It was partly exe- 
«iitM by Servius Sul^cius (in Bruio, c. 41), wboae praises are elefantly raried in the elaasic La;iniiy of 
the Soman Gravina (p. CU). 

(55) Penurbairieem autem omnium barum rerum aeademtam, banc ab Aroeslla et Oarneade recentem, 
•exoremus at sUcat, 



-rulnas, quam 

.alone, Bentiey . 

•apeeiottB doctrines which he has adorned. 



(50) The stoic philoeophy wns first taught at Rome, by Paimtlua, the fliend of the youofar Seiplo 
i^tea bis life in the Mem. du i'Acadeuiie dcs Inscriptions, torn. x. p. 7S--^. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, HI 

.temper; and it was chiefly worn, both for use and ornament, in the schodi of 
jorispradence. From the portico, the Roman civilians learned to iive, to rea- 
son, and to die t but thej imbibed, in some d^ree, the prejudices of the sect; 
the loTe of paradox, the pertinacious habits of mspute, and a minute attachment 
to wonds and verbal distinctions. The superiorly of firm to nkoMer^ was 
introduced to ascertain the rieht to property : ana the equality of crimes ie 
countenanced by an opinion of Trebatius,(67) that he who touches the ear, 
touches the whole body ; and that he who steals from a heap of con, or a hogs- 
head of wine, is guilty of the entire theft. (58) 

Arms, eloquence, suid the study of the civil law, promoted a citisen to the 
honours of the Roman state j ana the three professioDs were sometimes more 
conspicuous by their union m the same character. In the compositioQ ef the 
edict, a learned pnstor gave a sanction and preference to his private sentimeiit ; 
-the opinion of a censor, or a consul, was entertained witn respect ; and a 
doubtful interpretation of the laws might be supported by the virtues or 
triumphs of the civilian. The patrician arts were long protected bj the veil^f 
mysteij; and in more enlightened times, the freedom of inquiiy established 
the general principles of jurisprudence. Subtle and intricate cases were eKfr- 
cidated by the disputes of the forum : rules, axioms, and d«finitionB,f 69) were 
4tdmitted as the genuine dictates of reason ; and the consent of the legal pro- 
i'essors was interwoven mto the practice of the tribunals. But theee inter- 
preters could neither enact nor execute the laws of Uie republic : and the 
judges might disregard the authority of the Scsevdas themselveB, wkicb was 
<jften overthrown by the eloquence or sophistry of an ingrenlous pleader.(60) 
Au^stus and Tiberius were the first to adopt, as a usefiU engine, the science 
of the civilians ; and their servile labours accommodated the old system to the 
si>irit and views of despotism. Under the fair pretence of securing the dignity 
<if the art, the privily of subscribing Itf^al and valid opinions was confined to 
the sag^s of senatorian or equestrian lanE, who had been previously appioved 
by the judgment of tfie pnnce: and this monopoly prevailedy till Hadrian 
restored the freedom of the profession to oveiy citizen conscious of his abilities 
and knowledge. The discretion of the pr»tor was now governed by the lee- 
.sons of his teachers : the judges were enjoined to obey the comment as well at 
the text of the law ; and the use of codicils was a memorable innovation t^-^ 
Augustus ratified by the advice of the civilian8.(6lV 

The most absolute mandate could only require mat the nidges should i ^ 
with the civilians, if the civifians agreed amoiig themselves. But positive 
institutions are oflen the result of custom and prejcKlice ; laws and hnguage aie 
ambiguous and arbitrary; where reason is incapable of pronouncing^, the love 
of argument is inflamed by the envr of rivals, the vanity of masters, the blind 
attachment of their disciples ; and the Roman jurisprudence was divided by the 
once famous sects of the PtocMUam and Ai&wiMfM.Ces) Two sms of the law^ 
^' ' ^ " .*.... - . ,- V , , .. otthe Augustan 

the latter inofe 
1 harmless, oppo- 

{Sn As be to quoted Inr Ulptan (Iq|. 4a ad SsUnum tnPandeet I. dvU. th. if. taf. S». TttTMbtUoe, 
anerbewu aleadUigdTUim),quln]iilliam duxlt,becBiiieaiieplciijrean(Cl^ Par- 

. hape iie was not conecant or alncere in lito new mcl* 

(56) See GniTina (p. 45—51), and the Indftctual eavlta of Mawoo. HelneeeliM (HIet J. B. No. IflS,) 
quotes tnd appiovea a dtoeertaiion of ETonrd Ouo, de Btoica Jnriacoiiiiiltonim PhlkMoptaii. 

(SB) We have beard of tbe Catonian rule, tbe Aqoillan eUpalation, and the Bf anilian Ibime, of 911 
jnaxian. and of 947 deflnittom (pandect I. L tit. xvi. xviL) 

(60) Read Cicero, L 1. de Oratore, Topica, pro Murena. 

(61) See Pomponina (de Oji^ne Jurli Pandeet I. f . dt tt. leg. % No. 47), RelneeeiiiB (ad linalitat 1. 1. 
dt A. Na 8, 1. li. dL XXV. In Dement et Antlqultat.) and Oravlna (p. 41--45). Yet tbe monopoly of 
Augnitus, a harah measure, would appear with some sonening in the contemporaiy evidenee: and tt 
^wasprobably Tolled by a deciee of tbe eenata. 

(OS!) I have perused the Diatribe of GotfHdns HascoTins, the learned Maacoa, de Seeda JurtseonauMo* 
mm (lApste, 1798, in 19mo. p. 876), a leaned treatise on a narrow and barren ground. 

(83) Bee the character of AJitisdns Labeo in Tacitus (Annal. ill. 75), and in an epMe of Atetas Caplto 
(Aul. OeUlus, xUi. 19), who accuses bto rival of Libeitas nimia et vcon. Yet Horace would not hava 
lashed a Tlrtuous and respectable senator; and I must adopt the emendation of Bentlty, ¥bsi reads 
X.ajM«0 Insanlor (Serm. L Ul. 89). See Maacoude Seeds, <e. 1. p, 1-94) 

Vol. III.— M 




let THE DECLINE AND FALL 

sitioD to tbe hrrtDt of Rome. Their ]^1 studies were influenced by tbe rmA^ 
ous colours of their temper and priocipies. Labeo wat attached to tbe kum. 
0^ tbe old republic: his rival emoracea tbe more profitable substance of the 
risiittT monarcbj. but tbe disposition of a courtier is tame and submissive;, 
and Capito seldom presumed to deviate from the sentiments, or at least iiom 
the words, of bis predecessors ; while the bold republican pursued his inde- 
pendent ideas without fear of paradox or innovations. The freedom of Labeo 
was enslaved, however, by the rigour of his own conclusions, and he decided 
according to the letter of the law, the same questions which his indulgent com- 
petitor resolved with a latitude of equity more suitable to the common sense 
and feelings of mankind. If a fair exchange had been substituted to the pay- 
ment iof money, Capito still considered the transaction as a legal sale ;(64) and 
he consulted nature for the age of puberty, without confining his definition to- 
the precise period of twelve or fourteen years.(65) This opposition of senti* 
mentB was propagated in the writiiigs and lessons of the two founders ; the 
schools of Cfapito and Labeo maintained their inveterate conflict from the age 
of Augustus to that of Hadrian ;(66) and the two sects derived their appelU- 
tions from Sabinus and Proculus, their most celebrated teachers. The names* 
of Ca8$ians and Pegasiam were likewise applied to the same (parties ; but by 
a stranee rev^w, toe popular cause was in the hands of P^asius,(67) a timid 
slave of Domitian, while the favourite of the Cesars was represented by Cas« 
8ius,(68) who gloried in his descent from the patriot assassin. By the peipe-- 
toal edict, the controversies of the sects were in a mat measure determined.. 
For that important work, the emperor Hadrian preferred the chief of the Sabi- 
mans : the friends of monarchy prevailed ; but the moderation of Salvius Julian 
insensibly reconciled the victors and the vanquished. Like tbe contemporary 
philosophers, the lawyers of the age of the Antonines disclaimed the authority 
of a master, and adopted from every system the most probable doctrines.(69j| 
But their writings would have been less voluminous, bad their choice been 
more unanimous. The conscience of the iudge was perplexed bjr the number 
and weight of discordant testimonies, and. every sentence that his passion or 
interest might pronounce, was justified by the sanction of some venerable name. 
An indulgent edict of the younger Theodosius excused him from the labour of 
comparing and weighing^ their arguments. Five civilians, Caius, Papinian» 
Paul, Ulpian,and Modestinus, were established as tbe oracles of jurisprudence : 
a msgority Was decisive, but if their opinions were equally divided, a casting 
vote was ascribed to tbe superior wisdom of Papinian.(70) 

[A. D. 6S7.] When Justinian ascended the throne, the reformation of the 
Roman jurisprudence was an arduous, but indispensable tadc. In the space of 
ten centories, the infinite variety of laws and jeffal opinions had filled many 
thousand volumes, whiph no fortune could purchase and no capacity could 
digest. Books could not easily be found ; and the judges, poor in the midst of 

I Jodntan (IiMlltat L UL ttt. zzSU. and Theophil. V«n. Ghm. p. 077. 8600 kaa oonmeoaoratMl Uijs 
y diaputa, and Um venea of Homer that were allefed on elthar aide as legal auUiorftiea. It waa 
_.Jl7Paul (leg.3S,adEdiet tu Pandect LzviU. tit. i.lct.l),alno9 in a almple ezcbaage die buxer 
coold not be dlacrimlrated fVom the aeller. 

(OS) Thia oaatxweny waa likewlae given fbt the Proculiana, to aaperaede Um indecency of a aeaich, 
and to comply with the aphorism of Bippocnoea, who was attached to the aeptenanr number of two 
weeks of yean, or 700 of days. (InaUtnc I. L tit. nii.) Platareh and Uie itoica (de Placlt. PhUoaoph. I. v 
e. M,) aaaign a mora natural reaaon. Fourteen yean is the afe--rcpc vv o mreoncruGOf Kptvsni oy^psf . 
Bee the v$tigia of the aecu in Maacou, e. ix. p. 145—970. 

(00) The aeriea and condualon of the secta are deacribed by Maacou (c li— viL p. 94r- 190), and il wooht 
be almoat ridicuioua to praise his equal fustlce to theae obaolete secta.* 

(97) At the flnl summons he fliea to the torbot council ; yat Juvenal (Satlr. iv. 75—81) atylea the pm- 
Act or AoOir of Borne aanctisaimus lepim interprea. From his science, saya the old aehollaat, ho 
waa called, aac a man, but abook. He derived Uie aln(ular name of Pegaaua ttovn the galley wUch hia 



(08) Tacit, Annal. xvii. 7, Bueton. in Nerone, e. 37 

ani Maacou, de Seeds, c vUl. p. 190-144, de Heriacundia, a legal term which ww applied to theae 
adectic lawyen ktreiscert is synonymous to dividere.t 

(70) See the Theodoaian Code, L i. Ut iv. wiUi GodefTOy's Gommenury, torn. 1. p. SO— 3S.t This decree 
miidit i^ve occasion to Jesultkal dlsputea like those in the Lettres Provtncialea, whether a Judge waa 
oWlEed to ibilow the opinion of Paplnian or of a majority, agalnat his Judgment, against bis conscience^ 
*«.— Tet a legialalor might give that opinion, however fUaa the ▼alidlty, not of truth, but of law.^ 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE I6S 

ncbes, were reduced to the exercise ii their tllitemte discretion. The sub 
jects of the Greek provinces were ignorant of the language that disposed of 
their lives and properties ; and the barbarous dialect of the Latins was imper- 
fectly studied in the academies of Beirtus and Constantinople. As an Ijlyrian 
soldier, that idiom was familiar to the infancy of Justinian : his youth had 
b^n instructed by the lessons of jurisprudence, and his imperial choice selected 
the most learned civilians of the East, to labour with their sovereign in the 
work of ieibrmatioo.(71) The theory of professors was assisted by the prac- 
tice of advocates, aoa the experience of magistrates ; and the whole under" 
takine was animated by the spirit of Tribonian.(72) This extraordinary raan» 
the o^ect of so much praise and censure, was a native of Side in Pampnylia :: 
and his genius, like that of Bacon, embraced, as his own, all the business an(f 
knowle&e of the age. Tribooian composed, both in prose and verse, on a 
strange diversity of curious and abstruse subjects :(73) a double panegyric ot 
Justinian and the life of the philosopher Tbeodotus ; the nature of happiness 
and the duties of government ; Homer^s catalogue and the four-and-twenty sorts 
of metre; the astronomical canon of Ptolemy; the changes of the months; 
the bouses of the planets : and the harmonic system of the world. To the 
literature of Greece he aaded the use of the Latin tongue ; the Roman civK 
lians were deposited in his library and in his mind ; ana he most assiduously 
cultivated those arts which opened the road of wealth and preferment. From, 
the bar of the praetorian prselects, he raised himself to the honours of qusestor, 
of consul, and of master of the offices ; the council of Justinian listened to hia- 
eloquence and wisdom, and envy vras mitigated by the gentleness and affability 
of bis manners. The reproaches of impiehr and avarice have stained the vir- 
tues or the reputation of Pribonian. In a bigoted and persecuting court, the 
principal minister was accused of a secret aversion to the Christian faith, and" 
was supposed to entertain the sentiments of an atheist and a pagan, which have' 
been imputed, inconsistently enough, to the last philosophers of Greece. His' 
avarice was more clearly proved and more sensioly felt. If he were swayed! 
by gifts in the administration of justice, the example of Bacon will again occur ; 
nor can the merit of Tribonian atone for his baseness, if he degraded the sanc- 
tity of his profession; and if laws were every day enacted, modified, or 
repealed, for the base consideration of his private emolument. In the sedition 
of Constantinople, his removal was granted to the clamours, perhaps to th& 
just indignation, of the people : but the ausestor was speedily restored, and! 
till the TOur of his deatn^ he possessed, aoove twenty years, the favour and" 
con6dence of the emperor. His passive and dutiful submission has been 
honoured with the pratse of Justinian himself, whose vanity was incapable of 
discerning how often that submission degenerated into the grossest adulation.. 
Tribonian adored the virtues of his gracious roaster : the earth was unworthy 
jf such a prince : and he affected a pious fear, that Justinian, like Elijah or 
Romulus, would be snatched into the air, and translated alive to the mansions 
of celestial gloiy.(74) 

^ (71) For Um legal Uiboara of Jindnlan, I have atodled the Pieftce to the Inatitatee * the flrat, aecondU 
and third PreAieea to the Pandectt; the first and aeoond Preface to the Code ; and the CodeitwlrO. I. tlL- 
XTJl. de Vetert Jure enocleando). After these ori^nal testimonies, I have consolted, among the modems,. 
Heineoeliis (Hist. J. R. No. a8»-404), Terasson FUsc de la Jurisprudence Romalne, p. 995—396), Gravin*. 
(Opp. p. »-100,) and Ludewig, In his life of JnaUnian (p. 19-133. 31d-33l: for the Code and Movai» 
p. 9Q»--a61, for the Digest or Pandects, p. 901-317). 

(79) For the character of Tribonian, see the testimonies of Proeoplus (Persic. 1. 1, c. 93, 94. AnecdoL 
c. 13. 90,) and Baldas (torn. ill. p. fiUl, edit Koster.), Lndewig (in VlL JoaUnian, p. 175-900,) worlEs har< 
very haid, to whiiewaab-^the blackamoor. 

(73) I apply the two paanges of Snidas to the aame man : every drcumstance so exactly tallies. Tet 
the lawyers appear ignorant; and Fabricios is Inclined to separate the two characters. BIbllot. 6i»o. 
torn. i. j^ 341, li. p. 518, lU. p. 418, xU. p. 346. 353. 474. 

(74) This sEory Is related 1^ Hesychlus (de Virus Dhntribos), Procophia (AnecdoL c 13,) and Soidai 
.torn. til. p. 501). Such llatterv is incredible ! 

. . . .Nihil eat quod credere de se 
Non potest, cum laudator Dlis cqua potestaa. 
Fontenelle (tom. i. p. 39—39.) has ridiculed the impudence of the modest Vlrcll. But the fame FonteneDa 
placea his Icing above the divine Augustus ; and the sage BoHeau has not blushed to say, " Ledestin A- 
MS yeux n'oeeroil balancer." Yet neither Augustus nor Louis XIV were foola. 

M2 



164 THE DLCiuiNE AND FALL 

[A. D. 528,529.] If Cesar had achieved the refortnatioD of the Roman laiw, 
his creative g^eniua, enlightened by reflection and study, would have given to die 
world a pure and original system of jurisprudence. Whatever flattery might 
sugfi^est, the emperor of the £ast was afraid to establish his private iudgtnent 
as the standard of equity : in the possession of legislative power, be bornywed 
the aid of time and opmion; and his laborious compilations are guarded by 
the sages and legislators of past times. Instead of a statue cast into a simple 
mould by the hand of an artist, the works of Justinian represent a tesselated 
pavement of antique and costly, but too often of incoherent, fisgments. In the 
first year of his rc^ he directed the faithful Tribonian, aoA nine learned 
associates, to revise the ordinances of his predecessors, as Ihey were contained, 
since the time of Hadrian, in the Gregorian, Hermogenian, and Theodosian 
codes ; to puige the errors and contradictions, to retrench whatever was obso* 
lete or superfluous, and to select the wise and salutai^r laws best adapted to 
the practice of the tribunals and the use of his subjects. The work was 
accomplished in fourteen months : and the twelve books or iabletf which the 
new decemvirs produced, might be designed to imitate the labours of their 
Roman predecessors. The new code of Justinian was honoured with his 
name, and confirmed by his royal si^ature : authentic transcripts were multi- 
plied by the pens of notaries and scribes ; they were transmitted to the magis- 
trates of the European, the Asiatic, and afterward the African, provinces ; and 
the law of the empire was proclaimed on solemn festivals at the doors of 
churches. A more arduous operation was still behind ; to extract the spirit of 
jurisprudence from the decisions and conjectures, the questions and disputes of 
the Roman civilians. Seventeen lawyers, with Tribonian at their head, were 
appointed by the emperor to exercise an absolute jurisdiction over the works 
ol their preoecessors. Jf they had obeyed his commands, in ten years, Jus- 
tinian would have been satisfied with their diligence ; and the rapiii composi- 
tion of the moESTS or FAirmccT8,(76) in three years, will deserve praise or 
censure, according to the merit ol the execution. From the library of Tri- 
bonian, they chose forty, the most eminent civilians of former times ;(76) two 
thousand treatises were comprised in an abridgment of fiffy books ; and it has 
been carefully recorded, that three miUions of lines or 8entenoes,(77) were 
reduced, in this abstract, to the moderate number of one hundred and fifty 
thousand. The edition of this great woik was delayed a month after that of 
the INSTITUTES ; and it seemed reasonable that the elements should precede 
the digest of the Roman law. As soon as the emperor had approved their 
labours, he ratified, by his legislative power, the speculations oftjiese private 
citizens : their commentaries, on the twelve tabfes, the perpetual edict, the 
laws of the people, and the decrees of the senate, succeeded to the authority 
of the text ; and the text was abandoned, as a useless, though venerable, relic 
of antiq^uity. The Codet the PandeeUy and the /ni^«te9, were declared to be 
the legitimate system of civil jurisprudence ; they alone were admitted in 
the tribunals, and they alone were taught in the academies of Rome, Constan- 
tinople, and Beiytus. Justinian addressed to the senate and provinces, his 
tiemal oracles; and his pride, under the mask of pie^, ascribed the consum 
mation of this great design to the support and inspiration of the Deiij. 

jSince the emperor declined the fame and envy of original composition, we 

(75) Tlavitierui (general leeelverB) wu a common tiUe of Uie Gieek nlie«naniei (Plin. PnelkL ad HIM. 
Natar.) The Diguta of Sccvola, MarcelUnoa, Celww, were alxeady AmUlar to the dvUtam : bat J uiti 
nlan was In the wrong when he uied the two appellattonB aa ivnooymou. Is the wont Pamitets Greek 
or Latlii->maacolhie or ftmlnlne ? The diligent Brenckman will not pnnune to decide ttaeee momootooa 
contxorenies. HisL Pandect, Ftoreatln. p. 303, 304.* 

(7B) Angelas Polltlanoa (I. v. Epiat. utt.) reckona thiTty-eeven (p. ]99--aOOO civlKana qvoted In the 
Paadeeta— a learned, and, for hta Umei, an extraordinary Itou The Greek Index to the Paadccta ena 
neratei thirty<nino : and forty are produced ^ the Indefatigable Fabriclae (BlUkit. Gric torn. ill. p. 488 
— MK^. AntoBlin Augtutas (de Nomlniboa Propriia. Pandect, apud Lodewlg, p. 988,) la Mid to havt 
added fifty-four names ; but they muat be vague or aecond-baad refere n c eai 

(77) The TrtxM of the ancient MBS. may be strictly defined aa sentences or periods of a complete 
•anae, which, on the breadth of the parchment rolls or volumes, composed as many lines of unequal 
length. The number of Snvpc In each book served as a check on the errors of the scribes Ludewig, p. 
ffU-^US, and fala original author Sulcer. Tbesaur. Ecclesiast. torn. i. p. lOSl— 1098. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. w 

can only leqaire at bis haDds, metbody choice, and fidelity, the humble, though 
indispensable, virtues of a compiler. Among the various combinations of ideaa^ 
it is difficult to assign any reasonable preference ; but as the order of Justinian 
is difieient in his three works, it is possible that all may be wrong ; and it is 
certain that two cannot be right. In the selection of ancient laws, he seems 
to have viewed his predecessors without jealousy, and with equal reeard ; the 
series could not ascend above the reign of Hadnan, and the narrow aistinctioD 
of paganism and Chiistianity, introduced by the superstition of Theodosius* 
had Men abolished hj the consent of mankind. But the jurisprudence of the 
Pandects is circumscribed within a period of a hundred years, from the per- 
petual edict to the death of Severus Alexander ; the civilians who lived under 
the first Cesars, are seldom permitted to speak, and only three names can be 
attributed to the age of the republic. The favourite of Justinian (it has been 
fiercely uiged) was fearful of encounterine the lls^ht of freedom and the gravity 
of Roman sages. Tribonian condemned to obfivion the genuine and native 
wisdom of Cato, the Scievdas, and Sulpicius ; while he invoked spirits more 
congenial to his own, the Syrians, Greeks, and Africans, who flocked to the 
Imperial court to study Latin as a lbrett;n tongue, and jurisprudence as a lucra- 
tive profes«onv But the ministers of Justinian(78) were instructed to labour* 
not ior the curiosity of antiquarians, but for the immediate benefit of his sub- 
jects. It was their duty to select the useful and practical parts of the Roman 
Jaw ; and the writings of the old republicans* however curious or excellent* 
were no loQger suitedto the new system of manoers, ieli|[ion, and government 
Perhaps, if the preceptors and friends of Cicero were still alive, our candour 
woukl acknowledge, that, except in puri^ of language,(79) their intrinsic 
merit was excellea by the scfaoofof Papioian and Ulpian. The science of the 
laws is the slow ^wth of time and experience, and the advantage both of 
method and matenals, is naturally assumed by the most recent authors. The 
civilians of the reign of the Antonines had studied the works of their prede 
oessors ; their phikisophicapirit had mitigated the risour of antiquity, simplified 
the forms of proceedings and emeiged from the jealousv and prejudice of the 
rival sects. The choice of the authorities that compose tne Pandects, depend^ 
on the judgment of Tribonian j but the power of his sovereign could not 
absolve him from the sacred obligations of truth and fidelity. As the legislator 
of the empire, Justinian m^ht repeal the acts of the Antonines, or condemn 
as seditious, the free principles, which were maintained by the last of the 
Roman lawyers. (80) But the existence of past facts is placed beyond the 
reach of despotism ; and the emi)eror was guilty of fraud and forgeiy, when 
he corrupted the integrity pf their text, inscribed with their venerable names 
the words and ideas of his servile reign,(81) and suppressed by the hand of 
power, the pure and authentic copies of their sentiments. The changes and 
interpolations of Tribonian and his colleagues are excused by the jyretence of 
uniformity ; but their cares have been insufficient, and the antmomieSf or con- 
tradictions of tbe Code and Pandects, still exercise the patience and subtlety 
of modem civilians.(8S) 
A rumour devoid of evidence has been propagated by the enemies of Justi- 

C7B) Ad lofenioiM and iMrned ondon of Bchaltingliu (Jvriiprodaotta AnteJufliiniAiieR, p. 88S— 907,) 
jmliAes tbe cnolee of TrlbooUiLualiMt tbe paMioaaleeliiuiet of Fraocw Hoaomui and his Mcuriei. 

(79) Strip away Um enitt of Triboniaii, and allow for the uae of teetanical words, and Uie LaUa of the 
Pandecta will be found not vaworthv of the nlvtr age. It baa been vebemently attacked by Laoieotlua 
VaUa,*a fastidioui grammarian of tbe fifteenth century, and by hie apologist Floridus Sabinna. It haa 



been 'defended by Xleiat and a nauielefli advocate (meet probably James CapeUus). Their vaHoua 
treaUses are collected by Duker. (Opuscule de Latinitate velerum JuriseonsuUonun, Lodi* Bak 
lT«l,Wnio.) 

(80) Nomina quldem veteribos serrarimiM, legum antem veritatem nostram fedmua. Itaque slquid 
crat in lllis aeditiotmmt molta autom talla erant ibi repoelta, hoc dectsum estet deflnitum, est in perspieuuoi 
finem deducta cat quxque lex (Cod. Justinian. 1. i. Ut. zvii. lev. 3, No. 10). A frank ooafosskmlt 

t^) Tl»e nunftw of these •mbl tmM a (a polite name for fonerles) is much reduced by Bynkenhoek 
(In the four last books of his obserTatlons), who pooriy naintattia the right of JusUalan and the duty of 
Tribonian. 

(81) The antvMmusy or opposite laws of the Code' and Pondeets, are sometlmee the cause, and oftan 
the ezeoee, of tbe gtorioos uncertainty of the civil law, which so often aSbids what Montaiane ealla 
" Oueetione poor T Ami.** See a fine paasage of Fmnciscua Baldulaus in Jaatlnian a ii. p. 990, he, ap«d 
IiUdewlg,p.30S.306). 



IM TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

liian ; that the jurisprudence of ancient Rome was reduced to tshes by tii^ 
author of the Pandects, from the vain persuasion, that it was now either faJse 
or superfluous. Without usurping an office so invidious, the emperor mj^ht 
tafely commit to i|^rance and time the accomplishment of this destructive 
wish. Before the invention of printing and pa^r, the labour and the materiais 
fii writing could be purchased onlj dj the rich ; and it may reasonably bft 
compute^ that the price of books was a hundred fold their present value.<83) 
Copies were slowly multiplied and cautiously renewed : the hopes of profit 
tempted the sacrilegious scribes to erase the characters of antiquity/and Sopho- 
cles or Tacitus was obliged to resign the parchment to missals, homilies, and 
the golden legend.(84) If such was the fate of the most beautiful compositions 
«f genius, what stability could be expected for the dull and barren works of an 
obsolete science? Tlie books of jurnprudence were interesting to few, and 
entertaining to none : their value was connected with i>resent use, and they 
«unk for ever as soon as that use was superseded by the innovations of iashioo, 
superior merit, or public authority. In the age of peace and learning, between 
Cicero and the last of the Antonines, many k)68es nad been already sustained, 
and some luminaries of the school, or forum, were known only to the curious 
by tradition and report. Three hundred and sixty years of disorder and decay 
accelerjited the progress of oblivion : and it ma]^ fairly be presumed, that of the 
writing, which Justinian is accused of neflrlecting, many were no longer to be 
found in the libraries of the East(85) The copies of Papinian or Ulfjian, 
which the reformer had proscribed, were deemed unw.orthy <^ future notice ; 
the twelve tables and prsetorian edict insensibly vanished, and the monuments 
of ancient Rome were neglected or destroyed by the env^r and jfi;norance of the 
Greeks. Even the Pandects themselves have escafied with difficulty and dan- 
ger from the common shipwreck, and criticism has pronounced, that aU the 
editions and manuscripts ot the West are derived from one original.(86) It was 
transcribed at Constantinople in the beginning of the seventh centuiy,(87) was 
successively transported by the accidents of war and commerce to Amalphi,(88) 
Pisa,(89^ and F}orence,(90) and is now deposited as a sacred relic(9i; in the 
;ancjent paiace ui ike republic.(92) 

(83) When Fast, or Fbhius, fold at Pwii hta first printed BlUee •■ sieiiiiteTiplfl, the price of • perch- 
jnent copy wu reduced from four or flre hundred Va elxty, Af^, and Tortj crowne. The puUlc was at 
Aral pleaded with the eheapneee, and at length provoked by the dlacoyery of Uie fraud (Hattaire, Anna!. 

'TyDOffraph. torn. 1. p. IS ; first edition). 

(84) This execrable practice prevailed Uom the vUiib, and more especially ftom the xllth, cnitury, wbea 
. It became almost universal (Montfaucon, in the Memoirs de 1* Academiei torn. vi. p. 600, Jcc BibUoth^ue 
-Eaisonte dc la Diplomatique, torn. I. p. 176). 

(85) Pnmponius (Pandect. I. i. tit iL leg. S,) obeerres, that of the Onm fiNindeis of the civil law, 
rMudtts, Brutus, and Maniiius, extant volumina, scripta Maniltl monometta: that of some old repab- 
llcan iawyem, bee versantur eorum seripta intermanua bomlnum. Eight of the Aufustan sages were 
.nduoed to a compendium : of Caaoelllus, scrtpu non extant sed anas liber, Jfcc : of Trebatius, minns 
rrequeniantur: of Tubero, librt panim grati sunt Many qaoiations in the Pondecls are derived from 
books which Tribonian never saw ; and, in the long period from the viiith to the xilith century of 
Rome, the apparent reading of the modems suceessiveiy depends on the knowledge and veracity of 



(86) jau, in several instanees, repeat the errors of the scribe and the transposition of some leaves in the 
Florentine Pandects. This (bei, if it be true, is decisive. Tet the Pandects are quoted by I vo of Chartres 
Kwbo died In 1117), by Theobald, arcbbiabop of Cantertrarr. and by Vacarius, our first professor, in the 
yesr 1140 (Selden ad Fleiam, c 7, torn. U. p. 1060-1806). Have our British MB8. of Uie Pandects been 
it 



(87) Bee the deserlplkm of tMs orlghial in Brencknan, (Htit. Pandect Florent 1. i. c S. 3, p. 4—17, and 
h ii.) Potltian, an enthusiast, revered it as the auiheDtic standard of JusUnlan hiswelf (p. 407, 406) ; Init this 
^radox Is reftitcd by the abbrevlaiions of the Florentine MB. (1. Ii. c 9. p. 117-130). It Is composed of 
two quarto volumes, with large maiglns, on a thin parchaient, and the Latin characters betray tne hand 
ofaOrenk scribe. 



(83) Brenckman, at the end of his hliloiy, has famerted two dteertaUoos, en the lepabUe of Amalphi, 
«Bd tbs PIsan war In the year 1135, te. 

(80) The discovery of the Pandects at Amalohl (A. D. 1137,) Is fii« noticed (In 1501) by Lodovicos 
Botognlnas (Brenckman, 1. 1, c. 11, p. 73, 74, I. Iv. c. S, p. 417— 4S5), on the (kith of a Plsan chronicte 
<p.40B,410), wtibottt a name or a dale. The whole sionrtthough unknown to Uie twelfth century, 
embellished by Ignorant ages, and sospected by rigid criticism. Is wM, however, destitute of much internal 
proboMlity (1. 1, e. 4—8, p. 17-50). The Liber Pandocunmi of Pisa was undoubtedly consulted in the 
llvth oentury, by the great Bartolus (pt. 406, 407. Bee 1. 1, c. 0. p. 50—69). 

(00) Pisa wa; taken by the Florentines In the year 1406 ; and In 1411 the Pandects were transported to 
Ibe capital. Thesn events are authentic and fkmona 

(•1) They wero new bound in purple, drpoaiied in a rich cariiet and riiown to curloos tiavelleni by 
-4ks monks and masistrar<>fi bareheaded, and with lighted lepers 'Rienckman, I. L c 10, 11, It, p. 69-418.) 

'48) After the eollatioasof PoIUian. Boiogninus and Antoninus Augustlnusi and the ipieiidid edillj* 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. Wl 

It 18 the first care of a lefonner to preyent any future reformation. To mam • 
4ain the text of the Pandects, the Institutes, and the Code, the use of cijpben 
.and abbreviations was rigoroudy proscribed ; and as Justinian recollected, that 
ihe perpetual edict had been buried under the weigbt of commentators, be 
denounced the punishment of foigery against the rash civilians who should pre- 
-sume to interpret or pervert the will of their SQveieip;n. The scholars of Accur- 
sius, of Bartolus, of Cujacius, should blush for their accumulated guilt, unless 
,thejr dare to dispute his riffht of bindingi^he authority of his successors, and tne 
native freedom of the mind. But the emperor was unable to hn his own incon- 
stancy ; and, while he boasted of renewing the exchangee of Diomede, of trans- 
4nittine brass into eold,(93) he disoovered the necessity of purifying his gold 
£K>m the mixture of baser alloy. Six years had not elapsed from the publica- 
tioD of the Code, before he cdndemnea the imperfect attempt, by a new and 
more accurate edition of the same woik ; which he enriched with two hundred 
of his own laws, and fifty decisions of the darkest and most intricate nointa oi 
Jurisprudence. Eveiy year, or, according to Procopius, each day, of nis lone 
jreign, was marked by some legal innovation. Many of his acts were rescinded 
by nimself ; many were r^ected by his successon, many have been obliterated 
by time : but the number of sixteen edicts, and one nundred and sixty-eight 
.]royEL8,(94) has t>een admitted into the authentic body of the civil Jurispru- 
'-dence. In the opinion of a philosopher superior to the prejudices of his pro- 
^fessien, these incessant, and for the most part trifline, alterations, can be only 
^«xplained by the venal spirit of a prince, who sold without shame his judgments 
and his laws.(96) The chaige of the secret historian is indeed explicit and 
vehement ; but the sole instance, which he produces, may be ascribed to the 
devotion as well as to the avarice of Justinian. A wealthy bigot had bequeathed 
•bis inheritance to the church of Emesa ; and its value was enhancecl by the 
dexterity of an artist, who subscribed confessions of debt and promises of pay- 
ment with the names of the richest Syrians. They pleaded the established 
^prescription of thirty or forty years ; out their defence was overruled by a 
retrospective edict, which extended the claims of the church to the term of a 
•century ; an edict so pregnant with injustice and disorder, that after serviiM^ thii 
occasional purpose, it was prudently abolished in the same ieign.(96) If can- 
dour will acquit the emperor himself, and transfer the corruption to his wife 
and favourites the suspicion of so foul a vice must still demde the majestjr ot 
4iis laws ; and the advocates of Justinian may acknowledge, that such levity, 
whatsoever be the motive, is unworthy of a legislator and a man. 

{A. D. 533.1 Monarchs seldom condescend to become the pieceptora of their 
jects ; and some praise is due to Justinian, by whose command an ample 
jsystem was reduced to a short and elementary treatise. Among the various 
institutes of the Roman law,(97) those of Caius(98) were the most popular in the 



t»f tile PftodeetB by TaanOiM (taiiasi), Bvuy Bpeneknaii, • DuteliDMn, undertook a ptkrlmafe 
norence, wbere be emplojred eeveral yean in Uie atiidy of » lingie DUuecripL His Hlnoria Paodi 



10 



ttram FknendnoruD (Utredit, 179S, 4to.}i titougb a monnment of ioduetiy,'}! a niall poitloa of lilp 
"^xilAna] deaigii. 

(83) Xaona xkXkuwv, tmrfS(H twtmfitivt apod HoaMium patmn omnJs ylitutfi. (let Pmlkt ad 
TaadecL) A line of Hilton or Taoo would loriNrtee ua in an act of parliament, aua omnia obiinera 
-wneimua in omne rnmrn. Of the lint Code lie taya, (Sd Praftt.) In felemum ▼aUtunim. Man ud 
Jbrever! 

(M) JfrnftUm la a daaric a4)eeliTe, bat a barfoaroui enbiUmtiTe (Ladewfg, p. MS). Juadnian iwfw 
coUeeted them binieelf ; the nine collation, the Inal standard of nioaera tribunala, conalat of nlnety-€l|lit 
Novels; bat the namber waa ineieased by the dUlsence of Julian, Baloander, and ConUoa. Lttdewic. 
4i.S40.858. Aleman. Not. in Aneodot p. 96. 

(05) Monteaqulett, (^nalderatlona lur la Orandenr et 1« Decadence ilea RoBuilnai e. 90, Imn. ilL pw Ml, 
■dto. On tbia occasion he throws aaide the gown and cap of a President A Mortier. 

(06) Prooopiua, Aneedot e. 88. A sfanllar privileie was granied to the church of Bone. (Novel. Ix.) 
7or the general repeal of theae misehieTOua indnlgencea, see Novel, czi. and Edict v. 

an) Lactantlus, in bto Institutes of (Thrleiianity, an elegant and spacious work, proposes to imitate tbt 

title and method of tiie civilians. Qnidam pmdentes et arbitrl aqahatls Institutiooes CIviles Juila co»- 

- - — • ?anl,r 




Btt.m7. HeiaecclaaHtat,J.S.NowS13. Lodewlfi in Vlt Joat. pw 190. 



108 TU£ D£CLIN£ AND FALL 

fiaift and West : and their ose may be considered as an evidence of their merit;. 
They wen selected by the imperial delegates, Tribonian, Thec^ilus, and 
Donkheus : and the freedom and purity of tne Antonines were incrusted widi 
the coarsest materials of a degenerate age. The same volume which iotm- 
duced the youth of Rome, Consiaritinople, and Berytus, to the gradual study of 
the Code and Pandects, is still precious to the historian, the philo80j[lher, and 
the magistrate. The nrsTmrTss of Justinian are divided into tbor books : they 
mooeed, with no contemptible method, firom, L P«rtoiM, to, II. ThdngSf and 
inm thinrs, to. III. Actions; and the article IV. of Private Wrongs^ is temi- 
nated by me principles of Crimimd Law* 

L The distinction of ranks and oerMms, is the firmest basis of a mixed and' 
limited government In France, the remains of liberty are kept alive by the 
spirit, the honoure, and even the prejudices) <^ fif\y thousand nobles. (99) Two 
hundred ikmiliest supply, in lineal descet^ the second branch of me English 
legislature, which maintains, between the king and commons, the bftlance of 
the constitution. A gndation of patricians ancTplebeians, of straqgen and sub* 
jects, has supported tae aristocracjr of Genoa, Venice, and ancient Rome. The - 
perfect eqinltty of men is the point in which the extremes of democracy and 
despotism are confounded * since the majesty of the prince or people would be 
oflbnded, if any heads were exalted above the level of (heir fellow^laves or 
fellow-citizens. In the decline of the Roman empire, the proud distinctions of 
the republic were gradually abolished, and the reason or instinct of Justinian 
completed the simple form of an absolute monarchy. The emperor could not 
eradicate the popular reverence which always waits on the possession of here- 
.ditaiy wealth or the memory of famous ancestors. He delighted to honour with 
tides and emoluments, his generals, magistrates, and senatc»s ; and bis preca*- 
rious indulgeace communicated some rays of their gloiy to the persons oi their 
wives and children. Rut in the eye of tbe law, all Roman citieens were equal) 
awi ali subjects of tfie empire were citizens of Rome. That inestimable cha^ 
racter was degraded to an obsolete and empty name. The voice of a Roman 
codd no longer enact his laws, or create the annual omstefs of his power ; his 
constitutional lights might have checked the arbitraiy will of a master ; and 
the bold adventurer from Germany or Arabia was admitted, with equi^ favour,. 
to ibe civil and military command, which the citisen alone had been once en^ 
titled to assume over the conquests of his fathers. The first Cesars had scnt- 
pulouslv guarded the distinction of tngenuous and $eroik birth, which was 
decided fy the condition of the mother : and the candour of the laws was^ 
satisfied, uher freedom could be ascertained durit^ a siorle moment between- 
the conception and tbe delivery The slaves who were liberated by a gene- 
mus master, immediately entered into the middle class o^Uhertines or freedmen ; 
but they could never hie enfranchised from the duties of obedience and gratis 
tude j whatever were the fruits of their industry, their patron and his family 
inhented the third part ; or even the whole of their fortune, if they died without 
children and without a testament. Justinian respected the rights of patrons ; 
but his indulgence removed the badge of disgrace from the two inferior oadecs- 
of feeedmen ; whoever ceased to be a slave, obtained, without reserve or delay^ 
the station of a citizen ; and at length, the dignity of an ingenuous birth, which 
nature had refused, was created, or supposed by the omnipotence of the emperor. 
Whatever restraints of age, or forms, or numbers, bad been formerly introduced 
to check the abuse of manumissions, and the too rapid increase of vile and indi- 
gent Romans, he finally abolished : and the spirit of his laws promoted the 
4Slination of domestic sexvitude. Yet the eastern provinces were filled, in the 
time of Justinian, with multitudes of slaves, either born or purchased for the use 
of their masters ; and the price, from ten to seventy pieces of gold, was deter- 

CBB) See tbe AumIm PolltlqiMg, de r AbW da St Piene, torn. i. p. SS, who dal« in tbe jmr 178S. TIid 
SMet ancient AimiUes claim the immemorial poeeenion of arma and ftefa Blnee Uie Cruaadea, aonw, th* 
moat truly reapectablef bave been ereated by Uie king Ibr merit and aenrleea. The raceat and ▼tilaBf> 
«owd la derived from the molUtude of venal offieei, without tnitt or dlgalty, which coothmally emwil* 
«lia wealthy piebeiana. ' 



OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. 16^ 

afned hj tbeir age, tbeir strengthy and their educalion.(lOO) But the haidshipt 
of this dependent state wen continiially diminished bT the influence of j^vem- 
ment and religion ; and the pride of a subject was no longer elated by his abio- 
lute dominion over the life «id happiness of his bondsman.(101) 
The law of nature instructs most animals to cherish and educate their infant 
wny. The law of reason inctilcatea to the human species the returns of 

J piety. But the exclusire, afaaolutey and perpetual domimon of the iath^ 

orer nis chikireny is peculiar to the Roman jurispnidence,(10t) and seems ta 
be coeval with the foundation of the city .(103) The paternal power was insti 
tuted or confirmed bj Ronulus himself; and after the practice of tiiree centu 
rics, it was ioBcribea on the fourth table of the Decemvirs. In the forum, the 
senate, or the camp, the* adult son of a Roman citizen eqjoyed the public and 
prrmte rights of a ptntm: in his fiitber^ house, he was a mere vUng;^ con 
fouiidsd by the laws with the ii»veabks» the cattle, and the slaves, whom tit* 
capricious master might alienate or destroy, without being responsible to a» 
eaith^ tribunal. The hand which bestowed the daily sustenance might remuBft 
the voluntary gift, and whatever was acquired by the labour or fortune of the 
woBt was immediately lost in the piopeity of the fother. His stolen foods (hi» 
oien or his children) might be reeoverea by the same action of theft ^IM) and 
if either had been fmlj of a trespass, it was in his own option to compensate 
the damage, or resvn to tiie injured party the obnouous animal. At the call 
of iodigeiice or avanoe, the master <h a family could dispose of hia children or 
hi» slaves. But the condition of the sbve was iar more advantageous, sinoe he 
regained by the first mamiralssion his alienated freedom : the son was agai» 
restored lo his unnatural £rther ; he mifffat be condemned to servitude a se^md 
and a third time, and it was not till afiier the thhd sale and delivenince,(l<tty 
that he was enfiwiehised from the domestic power, which had been so repeefc* 
edJy abused. According to his discretioii, a father might chaslise the real or 
ioaaginary foults of his children, hj stripes, by imprisonment, by exile, by send* 
hate them to the country to wock m chains among the aaeanest of his serventa. 



mg tbem to the country to woes m chains among the aaeanest ot ms serventa. 
The majesty of a parent was armed with the power of life and deatiif(lOO^ 
and the esample of such bloody eiecutions, whkh were aoaaetlDMS praiaea 
and never punished, may betraced in the annals of Rome beyond the times of 
Pompey and Augustus. Neither age, nor rank, nor the consular office, nor the 
hoooun of a triumph, oould exempt the moat illustrious citizen from tba boode 
of filial subjection :(107) his own deacendants were included in the familT ef 
their common anoeston ; and the claims of adoption were not kss sacred or 

(lOS) ]rUnopdoiiormrfmTewa«beqiiMUMdtofererallesataM|dMydKwlotB.«iidthelooMnv^^ 
cnUaedlotfMlrilMMof klivalM; ttnplaeMor 0DldftvmeoaiiiKni«rfwioraMld«Ddirinif«aa; If 
9bow Uwt an, twoiily; if they kMW a trade, Uiirty; jMlariai or wiitan, flify; aoidwite or sAynciMM^ 
mssyjjMumtm under ten yean, thirty pleeea; above, fifty ; If trademen, aaTenty (God. I. ▼!. ut. xUll. lef . 
t). TheaeletalpifeeiaregeiieranyMlowthoaeorttoBiarkat. 

(lei) Vor Om italaof riavea and ftaedaiaii, tee lMtilaiea.1. 1, lit Ul-Hritt. L U tit U. 1.IU. tjt WM. is 
Pandects or DiMifLL tit ▼.▼i.LxzzTlU. tit I— t?.,aiiruie whole of the zllh txwiE. Code, 1. vi. tit. 
tv. ▼. L viL tit 1— xxiti. Be It heaeeTonrard onderalood thitt, with the oricinal teit of the Imtttatee and* 
Vandaeia, tha eanaapoodaal ailictaa in th« Antltfttltlaa and Btanails of HabaBdoaara impUdllyqaoted , 
and with the ibat zzvU booiu of tha PandaetSiUie laaniad and rathmal Ooinanlarlaa of (Sacard Noo^ 
Opera, torn. li. p. 1— AXL the end. Lvc. Bat 1794. 

(lot) See Ura patria potcatas in tiM Imtiuilaa (I. L dt Ix.), the Auidacli n. t tit ri. W.) and die Gada 

&TiU. Ut zlTit zlrUi. xllz.) Jim potartatia quod in libaraa habaaMia propriam eat civian BomaaonHB 
alii eoim alii mint liominea. qui talem in llberoe liabeant poteatatem qaalem noa habemua.* 
(108) DionyaiaB HaL U. p. M, OS, Oratlna (Opp. p. 909^) prodncea tiie worde of the twelve taUea. Papi- 
nian (la CoHatkma Legnm Bonan. el Mnaycanim, Ut iw. p. 90t,)8iyleB Uila patria polaMaa, lex tagte: 
Ulpiaa (ad Sabln. L zzvl. in Pandect 1. i. tit vi. leg. LB,) aaye, Joa poteMatla moribua raoeptam : and furio- 
ana fllinm In ooteatate habebit How aacred— or rather, how abeurd !t 

(104) Pandeet, 1. xlvit dt 11. lag. 14, Na 13, leg. 38, Now 1. Snch waa dia deeiaian of DIplaa and Paul. 

(105) The trina mancipatlo la meat elearty defined by Ulplan (Fragment, x. p^ 501, 508, edit Behulting) ; 
and beat Uhiatiatad in the AntlquiUea of Heineecini.4 

(100) By Jiiethiian, the old law, the Jue neeb of the Boman fttheranadtat 1. iv. dt ix. No. 7,) la 
icpoited and leprataatad. Borne tagal veadfaa are left in the Pandeota(l. xliU. dt xxix. lag. 3, No. 4,) and 
the CoUatlo Legum Romaaarum el Ifoeaieanini (dt 11. No. 3, p. 180). 

(107) EXeapt on pnblio oeeaelona, and Jn the actual exerelae of hia olBoe. In pnbiicia locia atqne mnncfl 
boa, atqua MCionibua patmm, inra cam filtorun qoi in naglntratH aunt poteatadbua oollata inliiqnlBaeaia 
paailhilnni al connlvera, iu, ( Aul. (SelHus, Noetea Anlev, li. 9). The leaKMis of die philoaopher Taorla 
ipara ja«dfled by the old and memorable example of Fabiua; and we may eontemplate the laaia aloiy ilk 
Iktalyla of Uvy (xxir. 44), and the homely idiom of Ciaudioa aoadragariua the annallic 



no THE DECLINE AND FALL 

len rigorou& than those of nature. Without fear, though not without dangler of 
-abuse, the Roman legislators had reposed an unbounded confidence in the sen* 
^ments of paternal bve ; and the oppression was tempered bj the assurauce* 
that each generation must succeed in its turn to the awful dignity of parent and 
floaster. 

The first limitation of paternal power is ascribed to the iustice and humanity 
•of Numa ; and the maia who, with Am father's consent, bad espoused a free- 
man, was protected from the disgrace of becoming the wife of a slave. In the 
£rst ages, when the city was pressed and often famished by her Latin and Tus- 
*can neighbours, the sale of children mijrht be a freguent practice ; but as a 
'Roman could not legally purchase the liberty of his fellow-citizen, the market 
must graduallj[ fail, and the trade would be destroyed by the conquest of the 
^republic. An imperfect right of property was at length communicated to sons; 
•and the threefold distinction o( prqfSctUto%Uf advefOitiauij and professUmal^ was 
ascertained by the jurisprudence of the Code and Pandects.(108) Of all that 
proceeded from the father, he imparted only the use, and reserved the absolute 
dominion ; yet if his pxids were sold, the filial portion was excepted, by a 
•favourable interpretation, from the demands of tne creditors. In whatever 
accrued by marnaee, gift, or collateral succession, the property was secured to 
the son ; but the father, unless he had been specially excluded, enjoyed the 
usufruct during his life. As a just and prudent reward of military virtue, the 
spoils of the enemy were acquired, possessed, and bequeathed by the soldier 
alone ; and the fair analogy was extended to the emoluments of any liberal pn>- 
'fession, the salary of pubnc service, and the sacred liberality of the emperor or 
the empress. The life of a citizen was less exposed than his fortune to the 
abuse of paternal power. Yet his life m^ht be adverse to the interest or pas- 
sions of an unworthy father : the same crimes that flowed from the corruption, 
were more sensibly felt by the humanity, of the Augustan age ; and the cruel 
Erixo, who whipped his son till he expired, was saved by the emperor from 
the just fuij of toe multitude. (109) The Roman father, from the license of 
-servile dominion, was reduced to the gravity and moderation of a judge. The 
presence and opinion of Augustus confirmed the sentence of exile pronounced 
against an intentional parricide by the domestic tribunal of Anus. Hadrian 
transported to an island the jealous parent, who, like a robber, had seized the 
opportunity of hunting, to assassinate a youth, the incestuous lover of his step- 
oiother.(UO) A private jurisdiction is repugnant to the spirit of monarchy; 
the parent was again reduced from a judge to an accuser ; and the magistrates 
were enjoined by Severus Alexander to bear his complaints and execute his 
sentence. He could no longer take the life of a son without incurring the guilt 
^nd punishment of murder; and the pains of parricide, from which he kiad 
been exempted by the Pompeian law, were finally inflicted by the justice of 
Constantine.( 1 11) The same protection was due to every period of existence ; 
and reason must applaud the humanity of Paulus, for imputing the crime of 
siurder to the father, who strangles, or starves, or abandons his new-bom 
infant; or exposes him in a public place to find the mercy which he himself 
had denied. But the exposition of^ children was the prevailing and stubborn 
vice of antiquity : it was sometimes prescribed, often permitted, almost always 
practised with impunity, by the nations who never entertained the Roman ideas 
of paternal power : and the dramatic poets, who appeal to the human heart, 
<iepresent with indifference a popular custom which was palliated by the 

(108)^Bee Uie ffrailaal enlaiftment and ■ecuril^of the mHj^temlnm in Um InstitutM <1. it. tit iz.}, tbe 

lite, 1.14, 15), the ii 



(108) Bee the ffradonl enlaifcment and ■ecurily of tbe filial 0«eii/t«m in tht 

indeeu (1. zv- Ut. 1. 1, zll. tlL i.) and the Oode. (L It. tit zzvf. zzvUO 

(100) The ezamplei of Erlio and Arias are related by Seneca (de (dementi 



iiorror, tbe latter with applaoee. 

(110) Quod latronbrniagls qui 
almcHate coiwtotere (Mareian. iMtitut. i. zW. In Pandect 1. zhrtil. tit. Iz. leg. S), 

(111) T •■ • ■ 

iriththe 



(110) Quod latronbi mails quam patris Jure earn Interfbelt, nam patria polestas lo pielate debet i 
__ . . 'Marclan. '" ' * ' ' " " * ' "" 



(11 1 > The Pompeian and Cornelian laws de mcarii* and pttrrieidiM^ are repeated, or rather BbrMged, 

ith the lest sapMements of Alexander Bevenia, Constantine, and Vahmtinlan, In the Paadecta 0> zlvltt. 

ttt. vili. iz.) and Code. (L Iz. Ut jnrl. zriU See llkewlss the Theodosian CkMle (1. Iz. tit zhr. zr.), wtth 



*Oodefroy*8 Commentary (torn. IlL p. 8€— 113), who poiirs a Hood of andeat and modern leunlng ovar 
these penal laws. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. m 

motives of eeapomj and compa88ion.(llt) If the father could subdue bra own 
feelings, be might escape, though not the censure, at least the chastisement of 
the laws ; and the Roman empire was stained with the blood of infants, till 
sucb murders were included, by Valentinian and his colleagues, in the letter 
and spirit of the Cornelian law. The lessons of jurisprudence(11 3) and Chris- 
tianity had been insufficient to eradicate this inhuman practice, till their gentle 
influence was fortified by the terrors of capital punishment.(114) 

Experience has proved, that savages are the tyrants of tne female sex, and 
(bat toe condition of women is usually softened by the refinements of social life. 
In the hope of a robust progeny, Lycui^gus had delayed the season of marriajge ; 
It was fixed br Numa at the tender age of twelve years, that the Roman bus- 
Innd might educate to his will a pure and obedient viiigin.(116) According to 
the custom of antiquitjr, he bought his bride of her parents, and she fulfilled the 
eoemptioHj by purchasing, with three pieces of copper, a just introduction to 
his house and household deities. A sacrifice of muts was offered by the pon- 
iHb in the presence of ten witnesses ; the contracting parties were seated on 
the same sheei>skin ; they tasted a saJt cake of far or nee ; and this con/brre- 
^(m,(116]| which denoted the ancient food of Italy, served as an emblem of 
their mystic union of mind and body. But this union on the side of the woman 
was rigorous and unequal ; and she renounced the name and worship of her 
father's house, to embrace a new servitude decorated only by the title of 
adoption. A fiction of the law, neither rational nor elegant, bestowed.on the 
mother of a famfly(117) (her proper appellation) the strange chaiacter of sister 
to her own children, and of daughter to her husband or master, who was 
invested with the plenitude of pateinal power. By his judgment or caprice 
ber behaviour was approved, or censured, or chastised ; he exercised the juris- 
diction of life and death ; and it was allowed, that in the case of adulteiy or 
dninkennes8,(118) the sentence might be properly inflicted. She acquired and 
inherited for the sole profit of her lord ; and so clearly was a woman defined, 
not as a persmif but as a thrngf that if the original title were deficient, she 
might be claimed, like other moveables, by the lue and possession of an entire 
year. The inclination of the Roman husband dischaiged or withheld the con- 
jugal debt, so scrupulously exacted by the Athenian and Jewish laws;(119) 
out as polygamy was unknown, he could never admit to his bed a fairer or 
more favourite partner. 

After the Punic triumphs, the matrons of Rome aspired to the common bene* 
Sta of a free and opulent republic ; their wishes were gratified by the indulgence 



(US) WtaenUMCIirameiof TOTeiieeTeproaclMsIiiiwlAforiiotobfyliif fatooi^^ 
4iiftnt,h6BpealDillkeml)ulMMiiHlama(rter, aadBOeacwUMKro^ 0m ApalehH. 

(MeUu&oq;ili. I. x. p. 337, edit. Delphln.) 

(113) The opIirioB of Uie lawyen, and tbe diacretlon of tlie maglitratflB, had Introduced In the time of 
-Taeitiu aome lefal wuralnta, wiiich might aapport hlaoontnat of the boni moies of the Oermana to the 
JMnuB legea alibi— that Is to tay, at Rome (de MoribiM Germanorum, c IS). Tertnllian (ad Natkmea, L L 
c. J5.) refutes bia own charges and those of his brethren, against tlie heathen Jnrisprodenoe. 

(114) The wiiB and homana sentence of the civilian Paul (L tt. Sententiaram tai Pandect. 1. xzv. Ut. ill. 
Ik. 4,) is represented as a mere moral precept 1^ Gerard Noodt (0pp. torn. I. in Juliua Panlhis, p. 567—- 
S8B, and Arnica Responsio, p. 501—60^, who maintains the opinion of Justus Lipsius (Opp.tom. it. p. 409, 
ad Beigaa, cent. L epist. 85), and as a posttlTe blndi^ law by Bynkershoek (da Jure ocddendl liberoa, 
Opp. torn. 1. p. 31S-340, Cure Secvnds, p. asl-HST). In a learned, but angry coniroTeny, the two 
firioids devlaiad into the opposite eztremea. 

(115) Dionys. Hal. 1. U. p. S3, 93. Plutarch, la Numa» p. 140, 14L Ts ew/ui mi re qdw ttuBtipw km 
^BtKTovan rv yui^wvn Ytwtff^* 

(US) Among tbe wintar/ViiHunte, the triWona, or bearded wheat; the JtUgf, or the nnbeaided : tha 
/•r, odsraa, orysa, whose deaeription perfectly tallica with the rice of Spain and Italy. I adopt this iden- 
tity on tha credit of H. Paucton, In hie usaful and labotiona Metrokigle (p. 517— saS). 

(117) Aulus GelUua (Noetes Attics, zviii.6,) glrca a ridlculona deflnilkm of iElius HeUasna, Matrooa, 
4|iHesemel,sMt«f/ssHUaeqnsBS0pluspeperit,aaporeetraandsciophalnthe8Owklad. HethenaddaOw 
genuine meaning, que in matilmoninm yel in manum convenerat 

(118) It waa eooogh to have tasted wlnct or to faava stolen the Ipqr of the cellar. Plla. Hist NaL 
xlv. 14. 

(119) Solon reqnlrea three payments per month. By tha Hiaaa, a daily debt waa Imposed on aa idia, 
TlMrous, jronng husband ; twice a week on a citisen ; onceoaapeaaant; once in thirty days on a camel 
4nTer; once In six months on a seaman. But the stodant or doctor waa firee from tdbale; and no wife, 
if she reeelTed a w€$klf sustenance, could sue fi>r m divorce: for one week a vow of absthianea waa 

laDowed. Polygamy divided, wlUwut moMplyiiig tte dmiai of tha hmtaiid. MdOt, UmrEbialai, L 
IIL e. 6,lahlB worfca, vol. U. p.717-790i 



in THE DECLINE AND FALL 

of £aithera and lovers, and their ambition wa« unflucceasfully veaieled by the 
gnvitr of Cato the CeDsor.(120) Tbej declined the flolemnities of the old 
Buptiais, defeated the annual prescription by an absence of three days* and 
without losing their name or independence, subscribed the liberal and definite 
terms of a marriage-contract. Of their private fortunes, they communicated the 
use, and secured tne property ; the estates of a wife could neither be alienated 
nor mortgaged by a prodigal husband ; their mutual ^As were prohibited br 
the jealousy of the laws ; and the misconduct of either party might affiira, 
linder another name, a future subject for an action of theft. To this loose and 
v(Juntary compact, religious and civil rites were no longer essential : and, 
between persons of a similar rank, the apparent community of life was allowed 
as sufficient evidence of their nuptials. The dignity of mairiage was restored 
by the Cfadriatian^ who derived ail spiritual grace from the prayers of the fiaiilb- 
M and the benediction of the priest or bishop. The originv validity, and duties 
of ^the holy institution, were r^ulated by the tradition of the synagogue, the 
precepts of the gospel, and the canons of geneial or provincial ^nods ;(1£1) 
and the conscience of the Christians was awed by the decrees ana censures of 
their ecclesiastical nilers. Tet the magistrates of Justinian were not suUecft 
to the authority of the church : the emperor consulted the unbelieving civiiiafl» 
of antiquity, and the choice of matrimonial laws in the Code and Pandects, is 
directed by the earthly Biotives of justice, policy, and the natural freedom oi 
both sexes.(l22) 

Besides toe agreement of the parties, the essence of every rational contract, 
the Roman marriage required the imvious approbation of the parents. A 
iiather might be forced by some recent laws to suppW the wants of a mature 
daughter ; but even his insani^ was not g^ierally aUowed to suposede the 
necessity of his consent. The causes of the dissolution of matnmooy have 
varied aoKNig the RcMnans \{193) but the most solemn sacrament, the confiuwa- 
tion itself, might always be done away by rites of a contraiy tendency. In 
the first ages the father of a family might sell his children, and his wife was 
reckoned m the number of his children : the domestic Judge might pronoonoe 
the death of the offender, or his mercy might expel her irem his bed and house ; 
but the slaveiy of the wretched female was hopeless and perpetual, unless he 
asserted for bis own convenience the manly prerogative of divorce.* The 
warmest applause has been lavished on the virtue of the Romans, who abstained 
from the exercise of this tempting privik^ above five hundred vears :(124) 
but the same fact evinces the unequal terms of a connexion whicn the slave 
was unable to renounce her tyrant, and the tyrant was unwilling to relinquish his 
slave. When the Roman matrons became tne equal and voluntary companions 
of their lords, a new jurisprudence was introduced, that marriaKe, like other 
partnerships, might be dissolved by the abdication of one of the associates* 
In three centuries of pro6f>enty and convptioo, this principle was enlaiged to 
frequent practice and pernicious abuse. Passion, interest, or caprice, suggested 
daily motives for the dissolution of marriage ; a word, a sign, a message, a 



(150) OiiUi6 0pplMiteww«iiiarlie«rtlwBiltifBttagiipMcliorVal«iiwFlacciM,miid t 
ndal ormtkm oftiweUbr Cato (Uv. xxziv. 1-6). Bat we disU ntlier hav the poHebed histortaii of th» 
eighth, than the roagh oraton of the sixth oentnrv, of Borne. Tbeprindplee, and eveo the atyle, of Cato^ 
are more accnntelir preserved Iqr Aulue GelUos (x. S3). 

(151) For the system of Jewish and CaUmiic matrfanony, see Selden (Uxor Efarafca, Opp. vol. ii. p. SIS 
— eSO), Bingham (ChrtsUan AnUquhies, 1. xxil.) aod Cbardon (Hist, dee Bacremene, torn. rU) 

(15B) The eivll lawi of marriage are txpomA in Uie Iiucltiitee (1. 1. tit. x.), the Pandecti (i. xxUi. xzir. 
XXV.) aod the Code (I. v.) : bat ae the titte de rH* nupUaram ie yet imperftct, we are obUied to explpm 
ttw ftagmant of Uljpflan (tit. Ix. p. 980, 9010 and Uie Oollatlo Legam Hosaleanim (tit xvl. p. 700, TBI;, 
with the WHM of PithauB and SchuiliBg. Thqf find, in the Commentary of Servioa on the flnt Geoigia 
and the fourth iEoeid, two curious paaMges. 

(193) Aceording to Phitarch (p. 57), Bonralns allowed only three groands of a divorce— drankeanesa, 
adulteiy, and false Iteys. Otherwise, the husband who abused his supremacy forfeited half bis goods t» 
the wife, and half to Uie goddess Ceres, and oflbrad a S8eri(lce(wiUi Uie remainder!) to the terreatrial 
deities. This strange iaw was either fanaginary or tnmsienu ^ .^ 

(194) In the year of Borne SBS, Bporlus CarvUhis Buta repudiated a Mr, a 9ood, but a bairen wilb, 
<DioB3FBloa Hal. 1. ii. p. 03. Plutaroh, in Numa, p. 141. A^alerlus Maximns, 1. II. c 1. Aulas GeliiiH. 
tv. 3). Ho waa quertkaed by ttMceuoie, and bated by Uie people; but, his divorce stood untmpeadwA 
Inlaw 



OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. ITS 

Ittlfrr, ikni mandate of a freedman, declared the separatioB ; the meet tendet 
of hiiBiaD connexions was deeiaded to a transient society of profit or pleasuFa 
Aecordine to the various conditions of life, both sexes alternately felt the dis- 
grace and iqjiny : an inconstant spouse transfened her wealth to a new fenuhf, 
abandoning a numerous, peifaaps a spurious, pro^^ny^ to the paternal authority 
and caie of her late husband : a l»eautifiil viivin might be dismissed to tfatt 
world, old, indigent, and frienoless ; but the reluctance of the Romans, when 
they were prewed to marriage by Augustus, sufficiently marks, that the pre- 
vaiiiiig institutions were least iaFourabie to the males. A specious theory is 
confuted by this free and perfect experiment, which demonstrates, that the 
liber^ of oiForce does not contribute to happiness and yirtae. The facility of 
eeparation would destn^ all mutual confidence, and inflame every trifling dis- 
pute : the minute difierence between a husband and a stranger, which might 
80 easily be removed, might still more easily l^e ibigotten ; and the matron, 
who in five years can submit to the emfaraoes of eight husbands, must cease to 
reverence the chastity of her own per8on.(l£5) 

Insufficient remedies followed with distant and tardy steps the rapid prorress 
of the eviL The ancieiit worship of the Romans aitorded a peculiar goodets 
to hear and reconcile the complaints of a married life j but her epithet of Firi* 
^2aca,(126) the appeaser of husbands, too cleariy indicates on which side sub- 
mission and repentance were always expecledl £very act of a citizen was 
fulject to the judgment of the centort; the first who used the privilege of 
divorce assigned, at their command, the motives of his conduct ;(l 27) and a 
senami was expelled for dismissing his viigin spouse without the knowledge or 
advice of his frienos. Whenever an action. was instituted for tbe recovery of 
a marriage-portion, the prator, as the guardian of equity, examined the cause 
and the characters, and gently inclineathe scale in favour of the guiltless and 
iqjiired party. Ai^ustus, who united the powers of both magistrates, adopted 
their different modes of repressing or chastising the Ikense of divorce.ri28) 
The presence of seven Roman witnesses was required for the validity of this 
solemn and deliberate act : if any adequate provocation had been given by tbe 
husband, instead of the delaj of two years, he was compelled to refund imme- 
diately^ or in the space of six months ; but if be could arraign the manners of 
his wife, her guilt or levity was expiated by the loss of the sixth or eighth 
part of her marriage portion. The Christian princes were the fiist who speci- 
fied the just causes of a private divoroe ; their institutions, from Constantino to 
Justinian, appear to fluctuate between the custom of the empire and the wishes 
of the churcn,(129) and the author of the Noveb too frequently referras the 
jurisprudence of the Code and Pandects. In the most rigorous laws, a wife 
was condemned to support a gamester, a drunkard, or a libertine, unless he 
were guSkty of homicide, poison, or sacrilege, in which cases, the marria^, as 
it should seem, might have been dissolved b^ the hand of tbe executioner 
But tbe sacred right of the husband was invariably maintained to deliver bis 
name and family from the disgrace of adultery : the list of mortal sins, either 
male or female, was curtailed and enlaiged by successive regulations, and 
the obstacles of incurable impotence, \oog absence, and monastic profession, 
were allowed to n^scind the matrimonial obligation. Whoever transgressed 

OSS) ....SicfiuntoctomaiKi 

aalnaoe per maXumiuM* (Juvenal* Satir. vl 90). 

A npld lacceeiioo, which may yet be credible, aa well aa Uie non eonBaliun nanens aed marifeonmi 



a au€s computant, of Seneca (de Benefldia, iii. 16). Jerom saw at Borne a triumphaat has 
bury kia twenty-fliat wIliB, who had interred twenty-two of hia leas sturdy predeeewon (Onp. toan. 1. ^ 
SO, ad GeroDtiani). Bat tbe ten huabanda in a month of the poet Maxtial, la aa eztraTaiaot J^perhoie (I 
vl cnifram 7). 

(IMJ Baceflum Virlplacs (Valariua Uaxlmua, I. ii.c 1), in the Palatine region appem in Uie time of 
Theodoeioa, in the deacriptlon of Home by Publiua Victor. 

(1S7) Valeriua Maximaa, 1. ii. c. 9. With aome propriety be jadgea divorce more caimiiittl than «ellbaey ; 
ioo namque conjn^a sacra spreta, untum, hoc etiam inturiose tractate. 

(196) Bee tbe laws of Aosustus and liia sucoeaaon, in Heineeciuai ad XiCiem Fapiam Poppnam, e. 19 
nOpp. torn. t1. p. i. a 3S3— 333. 

(1») AliB aunt legia Cfesarum, alls Chfiati : alkid PapiaBianiu, aliod P«itaa noattr pnKipIt (Jaram 
lam. 1 p. 108, Selden, Uxor Ebiaica, I. iii. c. 31, p. M7--853. 



174 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

the permisBioii of the law was subject to various and heavy penalties. Thm 
woman was stripped of her wealth and ornaments, without excepting the bodkio 
of her hair : if the man introduced a new bride into his bed, hir fortune might 
be lawfully seized hj the vengeance of his eiiled wife. Forfeiture was some« 
times commuted to a fine ; the fine was sometimes a(;ipravated by transpoiiatioii 
to an island, or imprisonment in a monasteir ; the injured party was released 
from tbe bonds of marriage ; but the oflfender, durii^ life or a term of years^ 
was disabled from tbe repetition of nuptials. The successor of Justinian 
yielded to the prayers of his unhappy sulgects, and restored the liberty of divorce 
by mutual consent : the civilians were unanimous,^! 30^ the theologians were 
divided,(l3l) and the ambiguous word which contains the precept of Christ, is 
flexible to any inteipretationHhat the wisdom of a legislator can demand. 

The freedom of love and marriage was restrained among the Romans by 
natural and civil imjiedimen^ An instinct, almost innate and universal, ap- 
pears to prohibit the incestuous commerce(13t) of parents and children in the 
infinite series of ascending and descending generatbns. Concerning the obli(|ue 
and collateral branches, nature is indifferent, reason mute, and custom various 
and arbitrary. In Egypt, the marriage of brothers and sisters was admitted 
without scruple or exception : a Spartan might espouse the daughter of his 
father, an Athenian that of his mother ; and the nuptials of an uncle with his 
niece were applauded at Athiens as a happy union of the dearest relations. 
The pro&ne lawgivers of Rome were never tempted by interest or superstitioo 
to multiply tbe forbidden degrees ; but they inflexibly condemned the marriage 
of sisters and brothers, hesitated whether first cousins should be touched by 
the same interdict ; revered the paternal character of aunts and uncles,^and 
treated affinity and adoption as a just imitation of the ties of blood. Accotdinr 
to the proud maxims ot the republic, a legal marriage could only be contracted 
by free citizens ; an honourable, at least an ingenuous birth, was required for 
the spouse of a senator : but the blood of kines could never mingle in legiti- 
mate nuptials with tbe blood of a Roman; ana the name of Stranger degraded 
Cleopatra and Berenice,(133) to live the concubines of Mark Antony and 
Titus.( 134) This appellation, indeed, so injurious to the majesty, cannot with- 
out indulgence be applied to the manners, of these oriental queens. A concu- 
bine, in the strict sense of the civilians, was a woman of servile or plebeian 
extraction, the sole and faithful companion of a Roman citizen, who continued 
in a state of celibacy. Her modest station below tbe honours of a wife, above 
the infamy of a prostitute, was acknowledged and approved by the laws : from 
the a^ ot Atffi^ustus to the tenth century, the use of this secondary marriage 
prevailed both in the West and East, and tbe humble virtues of a concubine 
were o()en preferred to tbe pomp and insolence of a noble matron. In this 
connexion the two Antonines, tbe best of princes and of men, enjoyed the 
comforts of domestic love: the example was imitated by many citizens impa- 
tient of celibacy, but regardful of their families. If at any time they desired 

(ISO) TlielD«lliilMaraiUeiit,batw«Bayc(MMikthaOo«MorTiwodoriiiiO-iU-tltzvl.wll]iOod»- 
ftoy*« Commentary, too. i. p. 310—315,} and JoMlnlaa (I. ▼. Ul. ZTii.)i t^ Pandecu 0- zziT.tiC. li.) and 
ttie Novela.UzU-czvU*cuvii.cxzilT.czl.) JmUolaa floctiiatad to tlM lait betwaea cItU and eecleiiaa- 
tlcaltaw. 

(131) Id pure Greek, irapvcw ia not a oommoa word ; nor can Om proper meanlaf , fomieation, be atrktlf 
applM to matrimonial iln. In a flguratiYe aenae, how far, and to what offeneea, may it be extended 1 
Did Christ speak the Rabbinical or Syrtac tonguel Of what original word li mwua the translation 1 
Bow Tarionsly Is that Greek word translated in the versioos ancient and modem ! There are two 
/Mark z. 11, Lnke x?l. 18,) to one (Matthew ziz. 9,) that sneh groond of divorce was not excepted by 
Jesus. Borne critics have presumed to think, by an erasive answer, he avoided the givina ollbnce either 
tattw school of tSammal or to Uiat of HiUel (Selden, Uxor Ebraica, 1. iiL c 18-82. 98. 31).* 

(139) The pttedptasof the Roman Jurtspnidenee are exposed by Justinian (Institut. 1. f. tit x.) ; andtha 
tawB and manners of the different nations of aaik|uity concerning forbidden degrees, Ac, are copiously 
asplalaed by Dr. Taykw in his BemeBts of CivU Law (p. 108. 314—339), a work of amusing, Uiough 
▼arioas, reading; but whkh cannot be praised for philosophical precision. 

(133) When her ftuher Agrlppa died (A.D. 44), Rerenice was sixteen years of age (Joseph, torn. I. 
Antiqult. Judaic I. xlx. c. 9, p. 998, edit Bavercamp). She was therefore above fifty years old when 
TItUB (A. D. 79,) iBvltus iBvltam lavlslt This date would not have adorned the tragedy or panoial of 
the tender Radne. 

(1S<) Tbe.aBrmlia t^iihms of Vifgll (JSneid, vlll. 088,) seems to be numbered among Um inonsl«» 
who warred wub Mark Antony against Augustus, the senate, and Uie gods of Italy. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. in 

to legitimate their natural childreo, the convenioD was instantly peilbraied hf 
ihe celebration of tbeir nuptials with a partner whose fruilfulness and fideiitjr 
ffaey had already tried/ By this epithet of naiuralf the ofispring^ of tbe con- 
cubine were distinguished nom the spurious brood of adultery, prostitulion^ 
and incest, to whom Justinian reluctantly grants the necessary aliments of life ;. 
and these natural children alone were capable of succeeding to a sixth part, 
of the inheritance of their reputed father. According to the rigour of law^ 
bastards were entitled only to the name and condition of their mother, fron^ 
whom they might derive the character of a slave, a Strang' ^ or a citizen. 
The outcasts of eveiy family were adopted without reproach as the children 
of the 8tate.(136)t 

The relation of guardian and ward, or in Roman words, of tutor and pt^nlf 
which covers so many titles of the Institutes and Pandects,(136) is of a very 
simple and uniform nature. The person and proper^ of an orphan roust al way» 
be trusted to the custody of some discreet fnend. If the deceased father had 
not signified his choice, the agnaiSj or paternal kindred of the nearest degree, 
were compelled to act as the natural guardians : the Athenians were apprehen* 
sive of exposing (he infant to the power of those most interested in his death ;. 
but an axiom of Roman jurisprudence has pronounced, that the charge of tute- 
lage should constantly attend the emolument of succession. If the choice of the 
father, and the line of consan^intty, afforded no efficient guardian, the failure 
was supplied by the nomination of the pnetor of the city, or the president o( 
the province. But the person whom they named to thisjcw^lu; office might be 
legally excused by insanity or blindness, by ignorance or inability, by previous- 
enmity or adverse interest, by the number of children or guaraiaitthips with 
which he was already burthened, and by the immunities which were grantedt 
to the useful labours of magistrates, lawyers, physicians, and professors. TiU 
the infant could speak and think, he was represented by the tutor, whose au- 
thority was finally determined by the ajge of puberty. Without his consent no* 
act ot the pupil could bind himself to his own prejudice, though it might oblige 
others for nis personal benefit. It is needless to observe, that the tutor often 
gave security, and always rendered an account, and that the want of dilispenr^ 
or integrity exposed him to a civil and almost criminal action for the vicuation 
of his sacred trust The a^e of puberty had been rashly fixed by the civiliana 
at fourteen;^ but as the faculties of the mind ripen mote slowly than those of 
the body> a curator was interposed to guard the fortunes of the Roman youth 
from his own inexperience and headstrone passions. Such a trustee had been 
first instituted by the praetor, to save a family from the blind havoc of a prodigal, 
or madman ; and the minor was compelled by the laws, to solicit the same 
protection, to give validity to his acts till be accomplished the full period of 
Iwenty-five years. Women were condemned to tbe perpetual tutelage of' 
parents, husbands, or (guardians ; a sex created to please and obey was never 
supposed to have attained the age of reason and experience. Such at least 
was the stem and haughty spirit df the ancient law, which had been insensibly 
mollified before the time of Justinian. 

II. The original right of property, can only be justiGed by the accident or 
merit of prior occupancy ; and on this foundation it is wisely established by the 
philosophy of the civilians.(137^ The savage who hollows a tree, inserts a 
sharp stone into a wooden handle, or applies a string to an elastic branch, be* 
comes in a state of nature tbe just proprietor of tbe canoe, the bow, or tbe 
hatchet. The materials were common to all, the new form, the produce of bis- 
time and simple industry, belongs solely to himself. His hungry brethren can* 

(135) Tbe bamUe, bat leial rlf btt of eoncaUiMa aod namntl ehildrcn, are Btatsd in tbo InsUtatea (L 1 
tit. X.), tbe PandeclB (1. t. Ut. ▼U.]k ibe Ckide, (1. ▼. tit. zzv.) and tbe NoTeia. (lulv. Izzxix.) The Tesearebc* 
of Hetneodue and Giaonone (ad Iiegem Juliam et Papiam Poppsam, c Iv. p. ISi^lTS. Opera Poetbuuie,,. 
p^ 108—158,) ninatrate thiw intereiting aod domeetic nibjeet. 

(138) See tbe aitide of gbaidiane and warda la Uie Inetitdtea (L L UL ziii— xzvi.), Uie Pandeete (1. xzyl. 
ixvli.) and the Code. (I. ▼. dL zxvlii— Ixx.) 

(137) InaUtQt L tl. tit i. il. Oompare the pure and preclee raaaoDlng of Caloa and HeineeeiiM 0- il- tit 
I. pl a»-01.) wiUi Uie locee prolixitjr of TheopbiliM(p. 9O7-0S5}. Tbe oplnioni of Ulplaa are praMrred' 
lathePudects a ttit. viii. leg. 41,No.l). 



136 THE D£CHNE AND FALL 

wst, witlioot a sense of their own iigostice,. extort from tbe hoBler Ibe jMBe oi 
the forest overtsken or slain by his personal strenglfa and dezteritj« Ifhls pm- 
vident care preserves and oniltiplies the tame animals, whose nature is tcactabie 
to the arts of education, he acquires a perpetual title to the use and service of 
their numerous progeny, which derives its existence from him alone. If he 
encloses and cultivates a field for their suBtenance and his own, a barren waste 
is conveited into a fertile soil ; the seed, the manure, the labour, create a new 
^aluB, and the rewards of hanrest are painfully earned bj the fatigues of the 
nvolving year. In the successive states of society the hunter, the shepherd, 
the hus&ndman, may defend their possessions by two reasons which forcib^ 
appeal to the feelings of the human mind : that whatever they ej^'oy is the fruit 
of their own indu^y ; and, diat eveiy man who envies their fehcity, may pur- 
chase similar acquisitions by the exercise of similar diligence. Suob, in truth, 
may be the freeaom and plenty of a small colony cast on a fntitfui island. But 
the colony muhiplies, while tbe space still continues the same : tbe oommos 
jigfats^ the equal inheritance of mankind, are engrossed by the bold and crafty ; 
'each field and forest is circumscribed by the landmarks of a jeakms master ; 
and it is the peculiar praise of the Roman jurispfudence, that it asserts the 
<Aum of the nrst occiqpaot to the wild animaJs of the earth, the air, and the 
waters. In tbe progress from primitive equity to final injustice, the steps eie . 
eilent, the shad^ are almost impmeptible, and tbe absolute monepoijr is 
guarded by positive laws and artificial reason. The active insatiate principle 
of self-love can alone supply the arts of life and the wages of industiy ; aaaae 
soon as civil govemment and exckistve fnoperty hare been introduced, Ih^ 
become neoessaiy to tbe existence of the liunian race. Except in tbe singular 
institutions of Spavta, Ibe wisest legidators have disapproved an Agrattaa law 
•as a false and dangerous innovation. Among the Romans, the enormous dispro- 
portion of weahfa surmounted the ideal restraints of a doubtful tradition, ana an 
obsolete statute; a tradition that the poorest follower of Romulus hikd^been 
endowed with toe perpetual inheritance of two iugtra^ilZB) a statute wiuck 
confined the richest citixen to the measure of five nundiea jiigera, or thiee hun- 
dred and twelve acres of land. The original territory of Rone consisted only 
<of some miles of wood and meadow along the banks of the Tiber ; and do» 
mestic exchange oobld add nothing to the national stock. But the goods of an 
>alien or enemy were lawfully exposed to the first hostile occupier ; the dty 
was enriched by tbe profitabte trade of war: and tbe bteodof her sons was the 
only price that was paid for the Vobcian sheep, the slaves of Britein, or the 
gems and gold of Asiatic kingdoms. In &e laoguase of ancient jurisprudence, 
ivbich was cocrupted and foieotten before tke a^ ofJustinian, these spoils were 
<listinguisbed by the name of fnoncept or monctptiim, taken with tbe band ; and 
whenever they were sold or emamc^faikdj the puncbaaer required some assu- 
rance that they had been the property ot an enemy, and not of a fellow-citi- 
.zen.(lS9) A citheen could onl^ foifeit bk rMts by appaient deielictioo^ and 
such dereliction of a valuable interest could not easily be pmsuased. Ye^ 
according to the twelve tables, a proscription of one year for moveable^ and 
of two years for immoveables, abolished tbe claim of tbe ancient master, if the 
actual possessor had acouired tbem by a &ir transaction from tbe person whom 
he believed to be the lawfiil pnmrietQr.(140) Such conscientious ii^ostice, 
without antv mixture of fnud or toroe, could seldom irguie the nembecs of a 
small republic ; but the various periods of three, of ten, or of twenty years, 
deteimined by Justinian, are more suiteble to the latitude of a great empire. 
It is only in the tenn df presoiption tbat the distinction of seal and personal 

038) Tli»A«ritfiimortlieflmlUmiai»tedflaiMdbyV«no(delUsRiHllc*,I.L 
161, edit Gener), and oloadcd by Ftkiy*t dedUMltoo (HItt. Nauir. xfUL S). A Jiut aad iMonaieoak' 
UMBtIa gfyeo InllM AdmlnlMimtkn dwTeiTMClwstaiBoiiiains (p. 15I-6S).* 

"•") ThemiiMiMtMlsezpiBiiMdrnmifUntaBdramolBUslilabyr' ' '** '" " •"" 



a39} The res maneipe Is ezplBioed from (Unt and ramolB Usiila by Uipiaa (Fngmeat til. zrlll. p. SIS, 
euo and Bynkenhoefc (Opp. torn. 1. p. 90S-315). The de^tion ta aonewbat arUtraiy ; and a> jmbo 
except Btveelf have aalgned a roaMm, I am diiBdeiit of my own. 

(140) From tUa abort preacrtptloa, Hiune (BMiya, ml. I. p. 4S3,) (nftra tbat then eould not tkm be 
more Older and aettleaieot in Italy than mms among tbe Taitan. By tbo civilian of bla advenaqr 
WaUaoc he !• repixwched, and not without raawm, for overldbUnf the eondttiOM. lartitnt. I. U. Ut. lit 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. m 

ftrtune has been remarked by the ciTilJans, and their general idea of property 
is that of siinple, uniform, and absolute dominion. The subordinate exceptions 
<)f ifse,of ic«tt/riic^(14l)of4ermVW»,(142) imoosed for the benefit of a neighbour 
on lands ana houses, are abundantly explamea by the professors of jurisprudence. 
The claims of property, as far as they are altered by the mixture, the division, 
or the transformation of substances, are investigated with metaphysical subtlety 
by the same civilians. 

The pefsonal title of the tirst proprietor must be determined by his death . 
but the possession, without any ai>pearance of change, is peaceably continued in 
bis children, the associates of his toil and the partners of his wealth. This 
natural inheritance has been protected by the legislators of eveiy climate and 
age, and the father is encouraged to persevere in slow and distant improvements, 
\^ the tender hope that a long posterity will enjoy the fruits of his labour. The 
jmncwk of hereditary succession is universal, but the order has been variously 
established by convenience or caprice, bjr the spirit of national institutions, or 
by some partial exainple, which was originally decided by fraud or violence. 
The jurisprudence of the Romans appears to have deviated from the equal i^r 
of nature, much less than the Jewish,(l4d) the Athenian,(144) or the English 
institutions.f 145) On the death of a citizen, all his descendants, unless they 
were alreaay freed from his paternal power, were called to the inheritance of 
his possessions. The insolent prerogative of primogeniture was unknown ; the 
two sexes were placed on a just level ; all the sons and daufi^hters were entitled 
to an equal portion of the patrimonial estate ; and if any of the sons had been 
intercepted dv a premature death, hb person was represented, and his share 
was divided, by his surviving children. On the failure of the direct line, the 
ri^ht of succession must diveif^ to the collateral branches. The degrees o« 
kmdred(146) are numbered by the civilians, ascending from the last possessor 
•to a common parent, and descending from the common parent to the next heir ; 
my father stands in the first deeree, my brother in the second, his children in 
the third, and the remainder of me series may be conceived by fancy, or pic- 
tured in a genealogical table. In this computation, a distinction was made 
essential to the laws and even the constitution of Rome : the agnaU, or persons 
connected by a line of males, were called, as they stood in the nearest dee^ree, 
to an equal partition; but a female was incapable of transmitting any Wal 
claims ; and the cognaU of every rank, without excepting the near relation of a 
mother and a son, were disinherited bj the twelve t^les, as strangers and 
aliens. Amonfip the Romans, a gen» or lineage was united by a common name 
and domestic rites ; the various ct^nomenM or 9wmaim6» of Scipio, or Marcellus, 
distinguished from each other the subordinate branches or families of the Corne- 
lian or Claudian race: the default of i3b» agnaU^ of the same surname, was 
supplied by a laiger denomination of gentikiz and the vigilance of the laws 
maintained, in the same name, the perpetual descent of reugion and property. 
A similar principle dictated the Voconian law,(147) which abolished the right 

(Ul) See tiie Iniacatee (1. 1. tit iv. v.) and Om Psndeeta (1. vU.) Noo4t hM oompoeed a levned and 
diiUnct treaCbw de Unfrvtet^ Opp. torn. L p. 387— 478L 

(143) The qneAloM i» StrvUntiima are difleaved In the loailtatee (1. ii. tit. Ml.) and the Pandects. (U 
rUl.) Cicero (pro Horen9L, e. 9,) and Lactantlue (InMltnL Divin. 1. L e. 1.) alfect lo laugh at Uie inetgni- 
flcant doctrine, de aquA pluriA areenda, dec Yet it might be of flrequent uae among Utigioos neighbonn, 
holb in town and eountry. 

(143) Among the patrtarcha, the (Irat-born eojoyed a myadc and splritnal primogeniture (Genesis zzv 
31). In Uie land of Canaan he was enlitled to a double portion of inheritance (Deuteronomy xxl. 17, witli 
Le Clere*s Judleioos Commentary). 

(144) At Athens Um sons were equal, bat Uie poor danghters were endowed at Uie discretion of Uieir 
brotbera. Bee tiie xXiypcxM pleadings of bens (in Uie sevenUi volnme of the Greek orators), Ulustrated 
by the version and eomment of Sir WiUlam Jones, a scholar, a lawyer, and a man of genius. 

(145) In Bnglaod, Uie eldest son akme Inlierits aU Uie land, a law, says the orthodox jndge BlacksUme 
(Commentaries on the laws of Enaland, yol. ii p. 315), unjust only hi the opinion of younger brothers. 
It may be of some political use in raarpening their industry. 

(148) Blacfcstone's Tables (vol. 11. p. 903,) npresent and compare the decrees of tho civil, with those 
of the canon and common law. A separtte tract of Julius Paulns, de gradibus et afflnibus, is inserted 
or abridged in the Pandects. (L xxzvHI. tit, x.) In the seventh degiBe he computes (No. 18,) 1033 



(M7) The Voeonlan law was enacted In the year of Rome 5B4i The younger Bdpio, who was then 
seventeen yean of ifB (Fienahemios, BopptemeBt LIvlan. zlvL 40), found an occasion of < 

Vol. 111.— N 



X7$ THE DECLINi: AND FALL 

of Cimaie inheritaiiee. As lonr as viigiiM were riven or told in mairiag*, Hmt 
adoptioD of the wife eitUn^uisbed tbe hopes of me daug;hter. But the eoual 
auGoeasion of independent ooationi, supported tbeir pride and kixuty, and mli^lit 
transport into a foreign bouse tbe ricbes of their (atfaers. Wbiie the maxims of 
Cato(l48) were reveredy tbey tended to perpetuate in each family a just and 
virtuous mediocrity ; till female blandishments insensibly triumphed ; and etrery 
salutary restraint was lost in the dissolute greatness of the republic* Tbe nepur 
of the decemvirs was tempered by tbe e<|uity of the prstors. Their eoicts 
ivstored emancipated and posthumous children to the rights of nature ; and 
upon the failure of the agnaUt tbey preferred the blood oi tbe cognati to the 
name of the gentiles^ whose title and character were insensibly covered with 
4>b|ivion. Tbe recinrocal inheritance of mothers and sons was established id 
the TertuUian and Orohitian decrees hj the humanity of the senate. A new 
and more impartial order was introduced by the novels of Justinian, who aflected 
to revive the jurisprudence of the twelve tables. Tbe lines of masculine and 
female kindred were confounded: tbe descending, ascending, and collateral 
series, was accurately defined ; and each degree, according to the proximity of 
blood and afiectioni succeeded to tbe vacant possesnoos of a Konan citi* 

w;i49) 

The order of suocesaioii is regulated by nature, or at least by the geoemi 
and permanent reason of the lawgiver ; but this ordes is htq/ienHj vidaled by 
the arbitrary and partial wiZb wnicb prolonged the dominion ot the testator 
beyond the grave,(l^O) In the simple state of society, this last use or abuse 
of the right of proper^ is seldom inchilged : it was intRxbiced at Athena by 
the laws of Soloa ; and the private testaments of the &ther of a family ara 
authorized by the twelve tables. Before the time of tbe decemvifs,(t61) a 
Roman citizen exposed his wishes and motives to the a soemMy of the tbiity 
euri« or parishes, and the general law of inheritance was suspended by an 
Qccasionsi act of tbe legislature. After the penbissioo of the decemvirs, eacb 
private lawgiver promulgated bis verbal or written testament in tbe )M«eeno» 
of five citizens, who represented the five classes of the Roman people ; a sixMs 
witness attested their ooncurrence ; a seventh we%faed the copper mon^^ 
which was paid by an imsjginaiy purcbsaer ; and the estate was emancipateci 
by a fictitious mle and immediate relesae. This sinplar ceremooy,Tt6S) 
which excited tbe wonder of the Greeks, was still practised in the age of Se« 
yerus ; but the prntors had alread]^ approved a more simple testament, for 
which they required the seals and signatures of seven witnesses, free from all 
legal exceptfon, and purposely summoned for the execution of that important 
aet. A domestic monarch, who reigned over tbe lives and fortunes of his 
children, might distribute their respjective shares accor^np^ to the degrees oF 
their merit or his ailection ; his arbitrary displeasure chastised an unworthy 
son by tbe loss of his inheritance and the mortifymg preference of a stranger. 
But the experience of unnatural parents recomanended some limitations of 
their testamentary powers. A son, or, by the laws of Justinian, even a daughter^ 
ooidd no longer be disinherited by their silence ; they were compelled to name 

an ^eoenmity to tail iiioCh«r» tlHen, kc (Folybliig, torn. IL I. xni. p. 149a^U04, tdH. Gnoov. a dona 
tlcwltaeM). 

(148) Liiem yoeoBiam (Ernerti, Ctavla Clcetonlana) magnS toco bonto laterllMW (1 kv ymn of i|») 
goaaiMem, mvm old Cato (de 8enactuUL c. 5). Aulua^MUua (vii. 12, xvli. 6,) baa mvad aoBM ptMafM. 

(140) B«e ibe law of tueceMion in the IradtatM of Caiiia (1. iL tiL vlil. p. 190—144,) a^ JuMlntan (L 
lU. Ul. I— tl. whh the Greek version of Tbeophilat, p. 515-^5. 588-mO), the PaBdeMaO. toviii. lb. r'u 
— zvlL), tbeCk)de (L vi. tit ly— Iz.) and the Nevala. (cxvUi.) 

(150) That sucoenkm waa tbe nOe, testament the ettmtim, ta proved by Taylor (J Stamts of L'ivU 
Law, p. 5l»-nS87), a leanied, rattbllng, spirited writer. In tba second and UiM booka, the moibod of 
tbe Institutes is (kmbtleas preposterous ; and Uie chanoeikw Onqnessoau (Oeuvraa, lam. k p. 9ni,) wMiea 
bis ooantryman Domal in the place of Triboniaa. Tet MMMsis before Mtessastsne to m mntj Oe 
ntUwai order q/* th$ ewU Urn; 

(151) Prior examples of tostamenlB an perbapaftibulous. At At&aoamdhAdieseflithwenlreoaldiBaks 
a will (Plviarcb, in Salone. torn. i. p. 164. Bee Iskus and Jones.) 

(I9S) Tbe ttstament of Augustus Is specified by Suetoniuj (in Ancwst. clOl, In Neron. c 4,) who mtm 
be studied aa a eode of Soman antiquities. Plutarch (Oposcul. ton. 11. p. 976,; to surprised oray dc 
MfVtmt ypsfwiv mm imi gwyj^riw frX ^fnmin t, trtfoi ds swW« rsf asif . Th«l««HMi«rUlplaB 
<fngment. iJt.xx.p. eS7,edic SchoiUnf) is almost too aachwdve aoiui !■ iwnaM. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. ir» 

the crimiDal, and to specify the offence ; and the justice of the emperor ena- 
Aerated the sole causes that could justify such a violation of the first principles 
of nature and societv.(l63| Unless a legitimate portion^ a fourth part, bad 
been reserved for the children, they were entitled to institute an action or 
Goni|>Iaint of inoffiaofu testament ; to suppose that their father's understanding^ 
was impaired by sickness or age ; and respectfully to appeal from his rigoix>i» 
sentence to the deliberate wisdom of the magistrate. In the Roman juris- 
prudence, an essential distinction was admitted between tlie inheritance and 
(he legacies. The heirs who succeeded to the entire unity, or to any of the 
twelve fractions of the substance of the testator, represented his civil and reli- 
gious character, asserted his rights, fulfilled his obligations, and dischai^d the 
gifts of friendship or liberality which his last will had bequeathed under the 
name of legacies. But as the imprudence or prodigalihr of a dying man migl^ 
exhaust the inheritance, and leave only risk and labour to his successor, he was 
empowered to retain the Falcidian portion ; to deduct, before the payment of 
the legacies, a clear fourth of bis own emolument. A reasonable ume was 
allowed to examine the proportion between the debts and the estate, to decide 
whether he should accept or refuse the testament ; and if he used 'be benefit 
of an inventoiy, the demands of the creditors could not exceed the valuation 
of (be effects. The last will of a citizen might be altered during his life or 
rescinded afber his death ; the pei^ons whom he named might die before hiro^ 
or reject the inheritance, or be exposed to some legal disqualification. In the 
contemplation of these events, be was permitted to substitute second and third 
heirs, to replace each other, according to the order of the testament ; and the 
incapacity of a madman or an infant to cequeath his property, might be supplied 
by a similar 8ubstitution.(l54) But the power of the testator expired with the 
acceptance of the testament ; each Roman of mature age and discretion acquired 
the absolute dominion of his inheritance, and the simplicity of the civil law 
was never clouded by the lor^ and intricate entails which confine the happtness 
and freedom of .unborn generations. 

Conquest and the formalities of law established the use of codicils. If a 
Roman was surprised by death in a remote province of the empire, he 
addressed a short epistle to his legitimate or testamentaiy heir ; who fulfilled 
with honour, or neglected with impunity, this last request, which the juries 
before the ase of Augustus were not authorized to enforce. A codicil might 
be expressed m any mode, or in any bnguage ; but the subscription of five: 
witnesses must declare that it was the g:enuine composition of the author. His^ 
intention, however laudable, was sometimes illegal ; and the invenlion ofj^hi^ 
cormnissa^ or trusts, arose from the struggle between natural justice and positive 
jurisprudence. A stranger of Greece or Africa mi^ht be the friend or bene&ctofi 
of a childless Roman, but none, except a fellow-citizen, could act as his hefr.. 
The Voconian law, which abolished female succession, restrained the l^cy 
or inheritance of a woman to the sum of one hundred thousand sesterces ;(155): 
and an only daughter was condemned almost as an alien in her father's house^ 
The zeal of friendship, and parental affection, suggested a liberal artifice : a* 
qualified citizen was named in the testament, with a prayer or injunction that 
he would restore the inheritance to the |>erBon for whom it was truly intended.. 
Various was the conduct of the trustees in this painful situation; they had swomi 
to observe the laws of their countir, but honour prompted them to violate tfieFr 
oath ; and if they preferred their interest under the mask of patriotism, they 
forfeited the esteem of every virtuous mind. The declaration, of Augustus 
relieved their doubts, gave a legal sanction to confidential testaments and codi* 

(1S3) Jotttnian (Novell, cxv. No. 3, 4,) ennmerttM only the poblle and private cilmar fbr which m bob 
mtehtlikewiMdtaiBlierithltftiUMr.* ^ _ 

054) The »nb»titmiimu JUei-€«mmi»»airt9 of the modern cMI law !■ ft feudal Idea craded OQ Ui* 
Eoman Jnrlaprudenee, and besrv ecaicely any reeenblanee to Uw anelent fldei-conuakia. InaUtutfcma da 
Droit Fiancole, Um. f . p. 347-^383. Denleeart, DeeUons de Jitritpriidence, torn. iv. p. STT^-SM^ ThejK 
wera ■iretctaed to Uie fourth degree by ao abuee of the dizUi Novel; a partial, perplezed, de<v l a m arn>y 
Hw. 
J2^ Dion Oaariiie(tom.tt. LlTi p.814,wlUi Rciinar*B Noiea)i9eGiaei iii< Greek money Uie nmi of 



180 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

cilsy and gently unravelled the forms and restraints of. the republican jurispni- 
dence.(156) But as the new practice of trusts degenerated into some abuse, 
the trustee was enabled, by the Trebellian and Pe^asian decrees, to reserve 
one-fourth of the estate, or to transfer on the head of the real heir a)i the debts 
and actions of the succession. The interpretation of testaments was strict and 
literal ; but the language of trusts and codicils was delivered irom the minute 
and technical accuracy of the civilians. (157) 

in. The general duties of mankind are imposed by (heir public and private 
relations ; but their specific obligations to each other can only be the enect c^, 
1. a promise, 2. a benefit, or, 3. an injuiy ; and when these obligations are rati- 
fied by 1^, the interested party may compel the performance by a judicial 
action, Biji this principle the civilians of eveiy country have erected a similar 
jurisprudence, the fair conclusion of universal reason and justice. (158) 

L The goddess o( faith [o( human and social faith) was worshipped, not only 
in her temples, but in the lives of the Romans ; and if that nation was deficient 
in the more amiable qualities of benevolence and generosity, they astonished 
the Greeks by their sincere and simple performance of the most burthensome 
engagements. (159) Yet among the sanoe people, according to the rigid maxims 
of the patricians and decemvirs, a naked pacty a promise, or even an oath, did 
not create any civil obligation, unless it was confirmed by the legal form of a 
stipvlation. Whatever might be the etymology of the Latin word, it conveyed 
the idea of a firm and irrevocable contract, which was always expressed in the 
mode of a question and answer. Do you promise to pay me one hundred 
pieces of gold ? was the solemn interrogation of Seius. I do promise, was the 
repl^ of Sempronius. ' The friends of Sempronius, who answered for his ability 
and inclination, might be separately sued at the option of Seius : and the benent 
of partition, or order of reciprocal actions, insensibly deviatea from the strict 
theory of stipulation. The most cautious and deliberate consent was justly 
re<]uired to sustain the validity of a ^tuitous promise ; and the citizen who 
might have obtained a legal security, incurred the suspicion of fraud, and paid 
the forfeit of his neglect. But the ingenuity of the civilians successfully laboured 
to convert simple engagements into the form of solemn stipulations. The pne- 
tors, as the euardians of social faith, admitted every rational evidence of a 
voluntary and deliberate act, which in their tribunal produced an equitable 
obligation, and for which they gave an action and a remedy.(160J 

2. The obligations of the second class, as they were contracted by the deli- 
very of a thing, are marked by the civilians with the epithet of reaf.(161) A 
grateful return is due to the author of a benefit ! and whoever is intrusted with 
the property of another, has bound himself to the sacred duty of restitution* 
In the case of a friendly loan, the merit of generosity is on the side of the 
lender only, in a deposite on the side of the receiver; out in a pledge, and the 
rest of the selfish commerce of ordinary life, the benefit is compensated by an 
equivalent, and the obligation to restore is variously modified by the nature of 
the transaction. The Latin language very happily expresses the fundamental 
difference between the cornmodaiwm and the mviuuTn, which our poverty is 
leduced to confound under the vague and common appellation of a k>an. In 

(156) The revolttUoiM of the Roman Iswt of inheritance are finely, dioufh Bometiaaea fluwtfnUy, 
Mneed by Monteequieu. EeprK dea Loix, 1. zxvii. 

(157) or Uie civil Juriapnidence of auccenions, testaments, codicils, Imcies. and trusts, Uw principlon 
•re aacanalned in the tnsUtutes of Caiua (I. ii. Ut. li— ix. p. 91—144), Justinian fl. ii. tiL x— xxv.) and 
t^nphiias (p. 388—514) ; and the inunenae detail oceuplea twelve books ^xxvUl— xxxix.) of the 



(158) The Institutes of Cains 0. ii. titlx. x. p. 144—214), of Justinian fl. lit. tit. xiv— xxx. 1. Iv. tit. i— 
vl.), and of Theophilus (p. 616—837), distinguishes four sorts of obligations- aut r«, ant o«rfrw, aut litarit, 
nut eoNMfUit ; but I confess myself partial to my own division.* 

(150) How much Is the cool, rational evidence of Poiybius (1. vl. p. 693. 1. zxxi. p. 1459, 1460,) superior 
to vacue, intliKriminate applause— omnium maxima et prccipue fldem coluit. A. Gellius, xx. J. 

(160) The Jns Prvtorinm de Paetta et Transactionibiis is a separate and satisfactory treatise of Gerard 
Koodt (0pp. torn. i. p. 483-^564). And I will here observe that the universities of Holland and Branden- 
burgh, in the beginning of the present century, aniear to have studied the civil law on the moal just an4 
liberal prindpfes-t 

(161) The nice and various subject of contracts by consent, is spread over four hooks (xvii— xx.1 of tin 
Pandects, and la one of the paria best deserving of tiie atteution of an English atuileiit4 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, Ut 

fbe ^Nmer, the borrower was oblieed to restoie the same individual thing; with 
which he had been aceommodaUa for the temporary supply of bis wants ; id 
the latter, it was destined for his use and consumption, ana be dischai^ed this 
mutual eng^afi^eraenty bj substituting the same specific value, according to a just 
estimation of number, of weight, and of measure. In the contract of mi^, the 
absolute dominion is transferred to the purchaser, and he repays the benefit 
with an adequate sum of gold or silver, the price or universal standard of all 
earthly possessions. The obligation of another contract, that of locatMn, is of 
a more complicated kind. Lands or houses, labour or talents^ may be hired for 
a definite term ; at the expiration of the time, the thing itself must be restored 
to the owner with an additional reward for the beneficial occupation and em- 
ployraent. In these lucrative contracts, to which may be added, those ol' part- 
Denhip and commissions, the civilians sometimes imagine the delivery of the 
object, and sometimes presume the consent of the parties. The substantial 
pledge has been refined into the invisible rights of a roortgaee or hypoOieea ; 
and the agreement of sale, for a certain price, imputes, from that moment, the 
chances of gain or loss to the account otthe purchaser. It may be fairly sup* 
posed, that every man will obey the dictates of his interest ; and if he accepts 
the benefit, he is obliged to sustain the expense, of the transaction. In this 
boundless subject, the historian will observe the lacatiim of land and money, 
the rent of the one and the interest of the other, as they materially affect the 
prosperity of agriculture and commerce. The landlord was oflen obliged ta 
advance the stock and instruments of husbandry, and to content himself with a 
partition of the fruits. If the feeble tenant was oppressed by accident, conta^ 

ri, or hostile violence, he claimed a proportionable relief from the equi^ of 
laws ; five years were the customaiy term, and no solid or costly improve- 
ments could be expected from a farmer, who at each moment mi|^ht be ejected 
by the sale of the e8tate.(16S) Usury,(163) the inveterate grievance of the 
city, had been discouragea by the twelve tables,(164) and abolished by the 
clamours of the people. It was revived by their wants and idleness, tolerated 
by the discretion of^the prstors, and finally determined by the Code of Justi* 
man. Persons of illustrious rank were confined to the moderate profit of four 
per cent. ; six was pronounced to be the ordinary and legal standard of interest ; 
eight waA allowed for the convenience of manufacturers and merchants ; twelve 
was granted to nautical ensurance, which the wiser ancients had not attempted 
to define ; but, except in this perilous adventure, the practice of exorbitant 
usury was severely restrained.(165) The most simple interest was condemned 
by the cleigy of the East and West ;(166) but the sense of mutual benefit 
which had triumphed over the laws ot the republic, has resisted with equal 
firmness the decrees of the church, and even the prejudices of mankind.(l67) 

iiuio 



(lOB) TiM eoTenanli of rent am definad in ttw Pandects (L six.) and Uie Ciode. (I< W- tic Izv.) Tlie 
. Aioqiiooniam, or term of &▼• yaaini appears to have been a costom raUier Uiaa a law ; but in France alt 
InsM of land were determined in nine yean. This limitation was removed only In the year 1775 (Bnev- 
dopedie MetbudiqiMf torn, i.de la Jurisprudence, p. 668. 669), and I am sorry to observe tliai It yet prevails 

*■" *•" ' ' ' ■ ' ' — ^ 'lie. 

.., _., .. the three books of O. Noodt, de frnnoro 

p. 175—868). The interpretation of toe a»»e9 or emtetimw nsmrm at twelve, the 



in tlie beauieous and happy oountiy where I am permitted to reside. 
(16.1. i mi;ht impUciUy acquiesce fai Uie sense and learning of the 

et asuris (Opp. tom.i. p. 175—868). The interpretation of toe a»»e 

aputsn'tf u oae per cent, is maintained by the best critlce and civilians ; Noodt (1. 11. c S, p. 907), Gravlnn 
(Opp. p. 305, A:c. SIC), Heineccius (Aniiquitat ad Instltnt. 1. ill. tit zv.), Montesquieu (Eeprlt des IjAx^ 
I. xxil. c. 32, tiim. 11. p. 36, Defense de I'Esprit da Loiz, torn. lit. p. 478, &c.), and above all, John Frederic 
Gronovir '" "* * " " .....-«-«.. ~.- .„ £._ .^ — a akm mkx .k^ 

founder, 

diAcuitU 



Gronovins (de Pecunia Veierl, I. lU. c 13, p. «13-aa7. and his Uiree Antezegeses, n. 45ft--6S5), the 
founder. or at least the champion, of this probable opinion; which Is, perhaps, perpleied with i 



(164) Prlmo zii tabulis sancitum est nequls unciario fosnore ampllus ezereeiet fTaeit. Annal. vi. 16)^ 
Pour peu (says Montesquieu, Esprit des Loiz, 1. zzii. c. 9S,) qu'on soil veri6 dans rhlrtolrade Rome, ou 
verraqa'une pareille lol ne devoit pas ere I'ouvrage des decern vira. Was Tacitus ignorant— or stupid t 
But the wiser and more virtuous patricians might sacrifice their avarice to their amUtlon, and might 
attempt to checlc the odious practice by such interest as no lender would accept, and such penalUes as no 
debtor would incur.* 

(165) Justinian has not condescended to give usury a place in his InsUtutes; but the necessary rules 
and r«etricLion8 aie Inserted In the Pandects (1. zzii. tit. I. II.) and Uie Code. (I. iv. tit zzzii zzziii.) 

(166) The fathers are unanimous (Barbeyrac, Morale des Peres, p. 144, «Ui.) ; Cyprian, LaetanUus, 
Barfl, Cbrysos om (see his frivoloas arrumenls in Noodt, 1. 1, c. 7, p. 188), Gregory of Nysn, Ambrose, 
Jsrom, AugusUn, and a host of councils and casuists. 

(167) Cato, aeneca, Plutarch, have loudly condemned the practice or abuse of usnry. According in 



18f THE DECLINE AND FALL 

3. Nature and society impose the strict obligation of icpairioi^ an ioiurf ; 
and the sufferer bj private injustice, acquires a personal right and a legitimata 
action. If the property of another be intrusted to our care* the requisite degree 
c^care may rise and fall according to the bene5t which we derive from such 
temporary possession ; we are seldom made responsible fin* inevitable acci* 
dent, but the consequences of a voluntary fault must always be imputed to the 
author. (168) A Roman pursued and recovered bis stolen gooos bj a civil 
^action of theft ; they might pass throu|[^h a succession of pure and innocent 
iSiands, but nothing less than a prescription of thirty yean could extinguish bis 
original claim. They were restored by the sentence of the praetor, and the 
ii^ury was compensated by double or threefold, or even quadruple damagea^ 
as the deed had been perpetrated by secret traud or open rapine, as the roCbec 
liiad been surprised in the fact or detected by a subsequent research. The 
Aquilian law(169) defended the living property of a citizen, his slaves and 
cattle, from the stroke of malice or ne^igenoe : the highest price was allowed 
that could be ascribed to the domestic animal at any moment of the year pre* 
ceding his death ; a similar latitude of thirty dajrs was gnnted on the destruo* 
-tioQ of any other valuable effects. A personal injuiy is blunted or sharpened 
i^ the maonera of the times and the sensibility of the individual : the pain or 
1h0 di^^ce of a word or blow cannot easily be ap{>reciated by pecuniair 
equivalent. The rude jurisprudence of the Decemvirs had confounded all 
haisty insults, which did not amount to the fracture of a limb^ by condeiMiiiig 
the ag8;res8or to the common penalty of twen^-five omo. out the same 
denomination of nioney was reduced, in three centuries, from a pound to the 
-tweig^ht of half an ounce ; and the insolence of a wealthy Roman indulged him- 
self in (he cheap amusement of breaking and satisfying the law of the twelve 
tables. Veratius ran through the streets strikira; on the £aoe the inoffensive 
passengers, and his attendant purse-bearer immeaialely silenced their clarooun 
by the legal tender of twenty-five pieces of copper, ai)out the value of one 
snilling.(i70) The equity of the praetors examined and estimated the distinct 
. merits of each particular complaint. In the ac^udication of civil damages, the 
. magistrate assumed a right to consider the various circumstances of time and 
place, of age and dignity, which may agnavate the shame and sufferings of 
the injured person ; but if he admitted the idea of a fine, a punishme^ an 
«exami>le, he invaded the province, though perhaps, he supplied the defects, of 
^tbe criminal law. 

The execution of the Alban dictator, who was dismembered by eight horses. 
Is represented by Livy as the first and the last instance of Roman cruelty in 
the punisbment df the most acrocious criaies.(17l) But this act of justice, or 
revenge, was inflicted on a foreign enemy in the heat of victoi^, and at the 
command of a single man. The above tables afford a more decisive proof of 
the national spirit since they were framed by the wisest of the senate* and 
accepted by the free voices of the people ; yet these laws, like the statutes of 
Draco,(172} are written in characters of blood.(173) They approve the iobu« 

banctt 

year-booka of 

(1S0) Noodt iOp^ torn. I p. 131—11%) has oompoMd a aepanue trestlie, ad Legem AqalUam. CPandect. 
,1. Is. lit. IL) 

(ITj^ Anlua esHiiM CKoct Auic. xz. 1,) bonow«d tola matf tkcm tlw CemmwitiriM of ^ Labeo on tin 

(171) The BafffaOve of LIvy (i. 98.) ia welfkcv and aotonii. At tu dlctit Albane maoeraa b a haiah 
^.rdlaeuon, anwocU^ of VifiU*s bumanity (wBneld, TUi. 643). Beyoe, wUb hla uwal food uate, obaerrea 
that die iubjea was too horrid for the abield of ^neai (torn. Hi. p. 939). 

mti The ace of Draeo (Olyaqdad xniz. 1.) ie fixed by Sir Joha Marabaan (Canon Chronlcoa, p. MS— 
JBS,) and Gonlni (Faatt Auicl, loia. ill. n. SB). For Ui lawa, aeo Uae wriiera on the goveniniedt of 
AtbwM, SiRoabia, Heoialoa, Potter. Iftc 

(m> The eeveoth, dedetlctSa, of the lil tablea ia delineated by Oravina (Opp. p. S9S, 903, wtth a c 
ary2in.914-8J0). AaliuGeiatts(zz.l,)andth«Collatio J^ecumltoaakaruaietaomanoraBif" 




OF TUB ROMAN EMPIRE. IBS 

and unequal principle of retaliation ; and the forfeit of an eye for an ere, 
a tooth (or a tooth, a limb for a limb, b rigorously exacted, unless the oBenoer 
redeem his pardon by a fine of three hunored pounds of copper. The 



^ecemvin distributed with much liberalitj the slighter chastisements of flagel- 
lation and servitude ; and nine crimes ofa very different complexion are ad- 
fudged worthy of death. 1. Any act of treawn against the state, or of cop- 
lespondence with the public enemy. The mode of execution was painful and 
ignominious : the bead of the degenerate Roman was shrouded in a veil, his 
hands weie tied behind his back, and after he had been scourged hj the lictor, 
lie was suspended in the midst of the forum on a cross, or inauspicious tree. 
S. Nocturnal meetings in the city ; whatever might be the i>retence,of pleasure, 
or religion, or the public good. 3. The murder of a citizen ; for which the 
common feelings of mankind demand the blood of the murderer. Poison is 
still more odious than the sword or dagger ; and we are surprised to discovei^ 
in two flagitious events, how early such subtle wickedness had infected the 
ttmplicity oi' the republic, and the chaste virtues of the Roman matrons«(174) 
The parricide who violated the duties of nature and' gratitude, was cast into 
4be river, or the sea, enclosed in a sack ; and a cock, a viper, a doe, and a 
monkey, were successively added as the most suitable companion8.(175} Italy 
produces no monkeys; but the want could never be felt, till the middle of the 
sixth century first revealed the guilt of a parricide.(176) 4. The malice of an 
incendiary ^ AAer the previous ceremony of whipping, he himself was 
delivered to the flames ; and in this example alone our reason is tempted to 
approve the justice of retaliation. 5. Judicial perjury. The corrupt or malip 
cious witness was thrown headlong from the Tarpeian rock to expiate hiy 
fulsehood, which was rendered stiu more fatal by the severity of the penal 
laws, and the deficiency of written evidence. 6. The corruption ofa judgi^ 
who accepted bribes to pronounce an iniquitous sentence.. 7. Libels and satires, 
whose rude strains sometimes disturbed the |>eace of an illiterate city. The 
author was beaten with clubs, a worthy chastisement, but it is not certain that 
be was left to expire under the blows of the executioner.(l77) 8. The noc<- 
•tumal mischief ot damaging or destroying a neighbour's com. The criminal 
was suspended as a eratelul victim to Ceres. But the sylvan deities were 
less implacable, and the extirpation of a more valuable tree was compensated 
by the moderate fine of twenty-five pounds of copper. 9. Magical incanta- 
' tions ; which had power, in the opinion of the Latin shepherds, to exhaust the 
strength of an enemy, to extinguish his life, and remove from their seats hif 
deep-itx)(ed plantations. The cruelhr of the twelve tables against insolvent 
' debtors still remains to be told ; and i shall dare to prefer the literal sense of 
antiquity, to the specious refinements of modem criticism.(178)* After the 
judicial proof or confession of the debt, thirty days of grace were allowed 
l>efore a Roman was delivered into the power of nis feOow-citizen. In this 
private prison, twelve ounces of rice were his daily food ; he might be bound 



(174) Livy mentlom two rtmarkaUe and llagltioiw erai, of 3000 penons aeetkted. and of 100 DoUa 
natroM convletad, of the crtane of potoonlng \x\. A ylil. 18). Mr. Himm dtoerlaiioatM Um afM af 
yrivaie and poMIe virtw (Eaaart, vol. L r. 9S, S3). I would ratlicr tay Uiai aaob ebiiUM 



\ year 1080) are accidente and prodigtea wtaioh leave no marka on Uie mai» 
taemofanallon. 

(nS) The III TaMea and Cleeio (pio Roooio Amerino, cSS. 9S,) are eontent with the aaok; Bmibj 
^aeerpjL OentroveiaL ▼. 4,) adoma it wkli wrpeaia; Juvenal Mm the ntUleai monkey (lonozla ilnilft^ 
Satir. zlil. 156). Hadrian (apod Dodtheum lla«l>tnim, I. IlL e. 18, p. 874. 878, wltii Sehultfnrt Noca) 
ModeetlnoB (Pandect. zlvUL dt Ix. leg. 0), Conetantine (Ood. L Iz. tit ztU.) and JuaUnlan (Inatitot L !▼. 
tit. xtUI.) eaaoiomte all the eonpaaiona of ttie parricide. Bat thla fkndAii ezeeulioa waa eiaMllSed la 
ptaadea. liaiietaaMBvlvlexafUBtiirv«ladtMUMdaBt«r. Faal.aeBleiiLBaeept.l.T.tU.zziv.p.918; 
edit Schuldnc. 

(lift) The flrat porridde at Sobm waa L.Oallai, after the aeoond Pnnle war (Plutarch ia Komulo, 
lmB.tpi57). DwIngtiieCiaibriOfP.Malleolaawwgaflijrof thelliatBiatriclde. Liv. Bpllom. L IxrtiL 

(177) Horace talka of the ftmaldlae foatli (L If. rfUm. Vk. 154) ; but Ckero (de RepobTki, L W. ^oi 
A u ywl B. de CIvltat. Bel, is. 8^ in Fn^Mnt. FbUoeopiL leia. lU. p. 308, edit. Oliver) aAraw thai tha 
deeenvhe nade llbch a eaphal oflhooe: euni perpoueae rte capftea, aazi i ian t p <r a ei rtfl i/ 
_(178) BrakMahoek (Obaervat Jiirfe. Rom. 1. L e. 1, ia Opp. torn. L p. 0, ICLHi) wbouia to prove UMI 
fta ereditora divided not the hodf, but thej»m«, of the iaaolvent debtor. Yet bla imernretoiion kiOQ# 
•■IMWaal horrii naiaphor; nor can he aonaoani the Hoaiaa oathoritlM of (^ulatUiaa, Caefliae, Fsv^ 
-«te,aadTortaUiau Sea AahMOeUta8,Noct.4llk.ixl. 



184 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

with a chain of fifteen pounds weight ; ana nis misery . '^•Ve exposed m^ 
the market-place, to solicit the compassion of his friends aiiu countiymeif. At 
the expiration of sixty days, the deot was discharged hy the loss of liberty or 
life ; the insolvent debtor was either put to death, <»r sold in foreign slaveiy 
beyond the Tiber ; but if several creditors were alike obstinate and unreleotinji;, 
they might legally dismember his body, and satiate their revenge by this homd 
partition. The advocates for this savare law have insisted, that it must 
strongly operate in deterring idleness and fraud from contracting debts which 
they nere unable to dischaige ; but experience would dissipate this salutaiy- 
terror, by proving, that no creditor could be found to exact this unprofitable 
penalty of life or limb. As the manners of Rome were insensibly polished, 
the criminal code of the decemvirs was abolished by the humanihr of accusers, 
witnesses, and judges ; and impunity became the consequence of immoderate 
rigour. The Porcian and Valerian laws prohibited the magistrates from 
iimicting on a free citizen any capital, or even corporal punishment ; and the 
obsolete statutes of blood were artfully, and perhaps trulyi ascribed to the 
spirit, not of patrician, but of regal tyranny. 

In the absence of penal laws and the insufficiency of civil actions, the peace 
and iustice of the city were imperfectly maintained by the private jurisdiction 
of tne citizens. The malefactors who replenish our jails, are the outcasts of 
society, and the crimes for which they suffer may be commonly ascribed to* 
Ignorance, poverty, and brutal appetite. For the perpetration of similar enor- 
mities, a vile plebeian might claim and abuse the sacred 'character of a mem- 
ber of the republic ; but, on the proof or suspicion of guilt, the slave, or the 
strang^er, was nailed to a cross, ana this strict and summary justice might be 
exercised without restraint over the greatest part of the populace of Rome. 
Each family contained a domestic tribunal, which was not confined, like that 
of the praetor, to the coenizance of external actions ; virtuous principles and 
habits were inculcated By the discipline of education ; and the Roman father 
was accountable to the state for the manners of his children, since he disposed^ 
without appeal, of their life, their liberty, and their inheritance. In some 
pressing emei^encies, the citizen was authorized to avenge his private or 

{>ublic wrongs. The consent of the Jewish, the Athenian, and the Roman,, 
aws, approved the slaughter of the nocturnal thief ; though in open daylight^ 
a robber could not be slain without some previous evidence of danger ana 
complaint. Whoever surprised an adulterer in his nuptial bed might freely^ 
exercise his revenge ;(179) the most bloody or wanton outrage was excused 
by the provocation ;(180) nor was it before the reien of Augustus that the bus^ 
band was reduced to weigh the rank of the ofiender, or that the parent was 
condemned to sacrifice his daughter with her guilty seducer. After the expul- 
sion of the king, the ambitious Roman who should dare to assume their title oc 
Imitate their tyranny, was devoted to the infernal gods ; each of his fellow* 
citizens was armed with tbe sword of justice ; and the act of Brutus, howevet 
repugnant to gratitude or prudence, had been ahready sanctified by the judg- 
ment of his country.(181) The barbarous practice of wearing arms in the 
midst of peace,(l82) and the bloody maxims of honour, were unknown to the 
Romans ; and, auring[ the two purest ages, from the establbhment of e<^ual 
ireedom to the end ot the punic wars, the city was never disturbed by sedition, 
and rarely polluted with atrocious crimes. The failure of penal laws was 

(XI9) The flrrt tpeeeh of Lytlas (Reteke. Orator. Gnec. torn. v. p. ft-48,) te in defimce of a batbuid 
who had killed the adulterer. The right of huabanda and (kthera at Rome and Athena ia dlaeuaaed wlfli 
much leamine by Dr. Taylor. LecUonea LysiacB, c. xi. in Reiakef torn. vi. p. 301—306. 

(180) See Caaaubon ad Athencum, I. i. c.5, p. 19. Perciirrent raphanique muglleHiae (Catull.p. 41, 
4S, edit. Voaalan). Hiine mugills intrat (Juvenal^ Sallr. x. 317). Hunc permtnxere calonea (HoraL 1. i 
flaifr. ii. 440 f^mlll* aiupranduin dcdit. .. . firaudi non full. Val. Maxim. 1. vl. c. 1. No 13. 

(181) Thb law ia noticed by LIvy (il. 8,) and Plutarch (in PuUieola, lom. I. p. 197) ; and It fvlly joAiflas 
the poblie opinion on the death of Cesar, which SaeConloa could pabliah under Uie Imperial govemmeBt. 
Jure ecana exiatisiatur (in Julio, c. ?S). Read the letteta that paated between Cicero and MatHua a ftw 
iBontha afVer the idea of March (ad Pam. xl. 97, S8). 

(18i) npwrM it A$niKu0t TW rs eiittpw iwnBevTO. Thueydld. I. i. c. 6. The hlatorian who c 
dria ctecumaMnee aa Uie teat of civiUzattou, woold diadaia the batharlam of a Europeaa oonit. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 18& 

more sensibly felt when every vice was inflamed by faction at home and do- 
minion abroad. In the time of Cicero» each private citizen enjoyed the privi- 
ly of anarchy; each minister of the repubhc was exalted to the temptations 
ot regal power, and their virtues are entitled to the warmest praise as the 
spontaneous fruits of nature or philosophy. After a triennial indulgence of 
lust, rapine, and cruelty, Verres, the tyrant of Sicily, could only be sued for 
the pecuniary restitution of three hundred thousand pounds sterling ; and such 
was the temper of the laws, the judges, and perhaps the accuser himself,(l83) 
that on refunding a thirteenth part of his plunder, Verres could retire to an 
easy and Juzurious eKite.(184) 

The first imperfect attempt to restore the proportion of crimes and punish- 
ments, was made by the dictator Sylla, who in the midst of his sanguinary 
triumph, aspired to restrain the license, rather than to oppress the liberty, of 
the Romans. He gloried in the arbitrary proscription of tour thousand seven 
hundred citizens. (185) But in the character of a legislator, he respected the ^ 
prejudices of the times ; and instead of pronouncing a sentence of death a^inst 
the robber or assassin, the general who betrayed an army, or the magistrate 
who ruined a province, Sylla was content to a^ra^ate the pecuniary dama^es^ 
by the penalty of exile, or, in more constitutional language, by the interdiction 
of fire and water. The Cornelian, and afterward the Pompeian and Julian, 
laws, introdaced a new system of criminal iurisprudence ;(186^ and the em- 
perors, fix>m Augustus to Justinian, disguisea their increasing ngour under the 
names of the original authors. But the invention and frequent use of extraordi- 
nary pam$j proceeded from the desire to extend and conceal the progress of 
despotism. In the condemnation of illustrious Romans, the senate was always 
prepared to confound, at the will of their masters, the judicial and legislative 
powers. It was the duty of the governors to maintain the peace of their 
province, by the arbitrary and rigid administration of justice ; the freedom of 
the city evaporated in the extent <m the empire, and the Spanish malefactor, who 
claimed the privilege of a Roman, was elevated by the command of Galba, 
00 a fiiirer and more lofty cross. ^187) Occasional rescripts issued from the 
throne to decide the questions which, by their novelty or iinportance, appearee 
to surpass the i^jthority and discernment of a proconsul. Transportation and 
beheading were reserved for honourable persons; meaner criminals were 
either ha^g^ed or burned, or buried in the mines, or exposed to the wild beasts 
of the amphitheatre. Armed robbers were pursued and extirpated as the 
enemies of society ; the driving away horses or cattle was made a capital 
oflence ;(188) but simple theft was uniformly considered as a mere civil and 
private iqjury. The degrees of guilt, and the modes of punishment, were too 
often determined by the discretion of the rulers, and the subject was left in 
ignorance of the l^al danger which he might incur ^by every action of hi» 
hfe. 



(1S3) Be fint rated at miUies (BOO^OOOt.,) the damagei of Sidly (Divlnatio in CeeUlam, c. 5), which b« 
Aerward reduced to quadringtiuiet (390/1001.— L Acdo in Verrem, c. 18), and was flDalljr content with 
trioM (94,0001.). Fitttareh (in Ckeron. torn. iU. p. 13640 has not diasembied the popular suspicion amT 



lepoit. 
.084) 



(184) Verres lived near thirty years after his trial, tfll the second triumvirate, when he was proscriiied- 
Ay the taste of HariL Antony for Uie aalce of his Gorinihian plate, lin. Hist. Natur. zxxiv. 3. 

(185) Such is the nambor assigned by Valerius Haximus (I. .y. c. 8, So. 1). Flonis (iv 81,) dls< 
tinguiabes 9000 ssiiotom and knights. Applan (de Bell. CiviL 1. V. • %, torn. II. p. 133, edit Schwei- 
geuser) more accurately computes 40 victii.^ of Uie senatorian rank, and 1600 of the equestrian censu» 



(186) For the penal law (Leges Cornelia, Pompolv, Julio, of Sylla, Pompey, and the Coeam), see tb* 
"~ * " ' — "■ - ■ ■• - ^ I Gregorian " ' "" 



B of Paultts (I. Iv. UL xviii— XXX. p. 497-^538, edit Schulting), the Gregorian Code (rrajnnenL I. 

xix. p. 705, 706, In Schulting), the Collatio Legum Mosalcarum ei Romanarum (tit. I— zv.), the Tbeodo^ 
sian Code (L ix.), the Code of JusUnian (1. ix.), the Pandects (xlviiL), Uie Institutes (I. iv. dt. zvili.) antT 
the Greek version of Theophilus (p. 017—096). 

(187) It was a guardian who had pohnned his ward. The crime was atrocious ; yet the punishment is 
rackoned by Suetonius (c 9,) among Uie acts, in which Galba showed hhnself acer vehemeos, et in delie- 
lis coeroendis Immodicus. 

(188) The abociorus or aUgeatoros, who drove one horse, or two marei or oxen, or five hogs, or te» 
foatL were Mihject to capital punishment (Paul Sentenu Recept. I. iv. til. xviil. p. 407. 4M). Hadrian (ad 
Concil. BeMtcc), most severe where the oifepce was most frequmt, condemns tno (rimlnals, ad gladliun^ 
Indi daronotkmem (mpian, de Officio Proeonaulls, 1. viii. in Collatione Legum Mosaic, et Rom tik 
xi.p^»Si) 



186 TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

A sin, a vice, a crime, are the objects of theology, ethics, and iurispnidcQee. 
Whenever their judgments agree, they corroborate each other ; but as often at 
they differ, a prudent legislator appreciates the p^uilt and punishment acconlii^ 
to tne measure of sociafinjury. On this principle, the most daring attack on 
the life arid property of a private citizen, is judged less atrocious than the crioM 
of treason or rebellion, which invades the fnc^eMty of the republic ] the obs^ 
quious civilians unanimously pronounced, that the republic is oontauied in the 
person of its chief; and the edge of the Julian law was sharpened by the kicea- 
sant diligence of the emperors. The licentious commerce of tlie sexes may be 
tolerated as an impulse of nature, or forbidden as a source of disorder and cor- 
ruption : but the fame, the fortunes, the family of the husband are seriously 
injured by the adulteiy of the wife. The wisdom of Aueuslus, after curbing 
tlie freedom of revenge, applied to this domestic offence the animadversion of 
the laws : and the guilty parties, after the payment of heavy forfeitures and 
fines, were condemned to long or perpetual exile in two separate islands.(18») 
Religion pronounces an equal censure against the infidelity of the husband ; but 
as it IS not accompanied by the same civil edicts, the wife vms never permitted 
to vindicate her wrongs ;(190) and the distinction of simple or double adulteiy, 
£o familiar and so important in the canon law, is unknown to the jurisprudence of 
4he Code and Pandects. I touch with reluctance, and despatch with impa* 
tience, a more odious vice, of which modesty rejects the name, and naluve 
abominates the idea. The primitive Romans were infected by the example of 
the Etruscans(191) and Gieefcs :(199) in the road abuse of proaperitv and power* 
«vcry pleasure that is innocent was deemed insipid ; and the Scatiman Iaw,(l93) 
which had been extorted by an act of violence, was insensihly abolished by the 
lapse of time and the multitude of criminals^ By this law, the rape, pernaps 
the seduction, of an ingenuous youths was compensated, as a personal injuiy, 
hj the poor damages of ten thousand sesterces, or fourscore pounds ; the ravisber 
might be slain by the resistance or revenge of chastity; and I wish to believe, 
that at Rome, as in Athens, the voluntary and effeminate deserter of his sex was 
degraded from the honours and the rights of a citizen.(184) But the practice of 
vice was not discouraeed bT the severity of opinion ; the indelible stain of man* 
hood was confounded wttn the more venal tramgressions of iomication and 
aduIteiT, nor was the licentious lover exposed tb the shame and dishonour 
which be impressed on the male or female partner of his guilt. From Catullus 
to Juvenal,(195) the poets accuse and celeorate the degeneracy of the times^. 
and the reformation of manners was feebly attempted by the reason and au» 
thority of the civilians, till the most virtuous of tne Cesars proscribed the un 
against nature as a crime against society.(lM) 

A new spirit of legislation, respectable even in Its error, arose in the empive 



(ISO) Till Uie publleadon of the Julius Paulus of SchulUnf (I. IL dt. zzrl. p. 317-^393), It w 
knd bell«Ted, that the Julian lawa ponMnd adultery with death ; and the mWtake aroee from uw iraua 
or error of "niboaiaa. Ytt Ltpalue had Mupecied the truth from the narrativee of Tacitus (Anoal. IL 



so, lU. 94, Iv. 42;, and vrtm ficoin Uie pnietiee of Aufustua, who diaangulshed the rrsswiMMf 
UsfeoMle kindred. 

(190) In cases of aduMary, 8eT«nis conflnad to the liiisband theilglit of pubHe aceasatioa (Ood. J«a> 
thiiMi. L ix. Ut. ijclKi.1). Nor Is Uiis vtktOag^ lu^uat-so dilfbrant an Uw eflfeds of male or feaaia 
dnddellty. r- -^ — • 

(191] TlaM>ikO« t) ud Tbenpompos (I. xlUl. apod Athemram, t. zil. p. 5170 describe the hinrf and 
liMB or dM Biniseaos: mXv fw rei x< XO*^*** owwrtt rots irawt nsi rots Mrcsanotf. About the saaie 
j^sriod (A. U. C. 445) the Roman youth studied In £truria (Liv. ix. 38). 



(199) The Perrians had been corrupted In the same school: or BXXvvwv at^wrts warn fuwyowrm. 
(Hemdot. 1. L c 135). A curkMis dissertation mlfht be formed on the introduction ofjNBderasty after the 
time of Homer, lis piogrem among the Greeks of Aria and Europe, the Tehemeoce of their passions, and 
the thbi dsvioe of virtue and friendship which amused the phitosophMS of Athena. But, aeelera uiHsiili 
oportet dum paaluntiir, abscoodi flaciua. 

(193) The name, the date, and the provisions, <lf this law, are equally doubdU. (OrAvhrn, Opp. p. 481^ 
489, HelneceluB, Hlsl. Jar. Rom. No. 106, Emesd, Qav. CIcemn. in Iiidlce Legam.) BittT waTohserva 
that the ntfomim Venus of the honeet German is styled aoer«a by the more poUte ItaHan. 

(194) Bee die oradon of i&ehlnes against die catamite Tlmarchus (In BoWw, Orttor. Oi«e. torn. IL 
^91—184). 

(195) A crowd of di«paeeful pamagm wID (bvee themselyet on dw memoryoT ttedaarieMadsrj I will 
«n^ remind hto of the oool dedaradoo of OvM : 

OdI ooncubltua qui non utmnMiae resoivunt. 
Hoc est quod piierAm tangar ainore mmma. 
099) .flins Lamprfdins, in VU. Heliogabal. fit Hist- August, p. 119. Awellai VIelor. la 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. m 

with tbe religion of CoiistaDtjne.(197) The bws of Moses vreie received m 
tbe divine original of justice, and the Christian pnncee adapted |beir pen«« 
itatutes to the d^rees of moral and religious turpitude. Adulterj was &at 
declared to be a capital offence ; the frailty of tbe sexes was assimilated to 
poison or assassination^ to sorcery or parricide ; the same penalties were la- 
flicted 00 tbe passive or active guilt oTpsederastj ; and all criminals of free ot 
servile condition were either drowned or betieadedt or cast alive into the 
aveeging flames. The adulterers were spared by tbe common sympathy a' 
mankind; but tbe loven of their own sex were pursued by general and piouff 
indignation: tbe impure maoneie of Greece still prevailed m tbe cities of Asia« 
and eveiy vice was KHneoted by tbe celibacv of tbe monks and cleigy, Justi 
aiaii rebxed tbe puoisbmeot at least of female infidelity ; tbe guilty spouse wae 
only condemoed to solitude and penaace» and at the end of two years she 
might be recalled co the arms of a foi^givii^ husband. But tbe same empeior 
declared himself tbe implacable emmf of unmanly luet, and the cruelty of hie 
persecution can scarcely be eiicused by tbe purity of bis motivee.(l98) Ia 
defiance of eveiy principle of justice» be stretched to past as well as hituvft 
offiinces the operations of bis edicts* with the previous allowance of a short 
respite ibr contessioo and paidon. A painful death waa inflicted by thu^ ampu* 
Nation of the sinful instrument, or the iosertion of sharp reeds into the pores and 
tubee of most exquisite sensibility ; and Justinian defended tbe propriety of tbe 
execution, since the criminals would have Lost their hands had they been con- 
victed of sacrilege. In this state of disgrace and agony, two bishops, Isaiah of 
Rhodes, and Alexander of Diospolis, were dran^ed through the streets of Con- 
stantinople, while their brethren were admonished by the voice of a crier, to 
observe this awful lesson, and not to pollute the sanctity of their character. 
Peibajps these prelates were innocent A sentence of death and infamy was 
often founded on the slight and suspicious evidence of a child or a servant ; the 
guilt of the green faction, of the rico, and of tbe enemies of Theodora, waa pre* 
euroed by the judges, and p»df rasly became the crime of those to whom no 
crime could be imputed* A JPrench philosc^ber(199) has dared to remade, 
tliat whatever is secret must be doubtful, and that our natural horror of vice 
may be abused as an engfine of tyranny. But tbe favourable persuasion of the 
earae writer, that a legislator may confide in the taste and reason of mankind, 
is impeached by the unwelcome discoveiy of the antiquity and extent of the 
disease.(200) 

The free citisens of Athens and Rome eigpyed, in all criminal cases, the 
invaluable privilege of being tried by their countJ7.(20l) 1. The administra- 
tion of justice is the most ancient office of a prince : it was exercised by the 
Roman kinp, and abused by Tarquin ; who alone, without law or council, pro- 
nounced his arbitrary judgments. The first consuls succeeded to this regal 
prerogative ; but the ucnd right of a{i)eal soon abolished the jurisdiction of 

Codex. Thaodoi. 1. iz. tU. tU. lof. 7, aad GoMtoy*B ConunantsiT* tom- Ul« 9- <3. Theodotitia alwIUMd 
die ■ubtarraneous brotheia of Borne, in which die proetitutlon ofboth eexe* wee Mled mth Impwii^. 

(IST) 8ee dio law of Cen e f nrti e mad hie leceeeoie •gelnH tdvtu^f mtiomT» Ifc^ t» die T h Bo S e ehHi 
9. is. lit. vU. lee. 7,1. zi. du uxvi. Ie|. 1. 4^ and Juedalaa Codee (L Iz. UL U. k«. 90,31). Tbeeeprtncee 
•peak Um languafe of paarion ae weU ae of JueUce, and ftaudidenUy eecribe their own eeredty to the 
wet Ceaara. 

(IS^Jaadalaa, NowtlzsrU. euilv. ezIL Proeoptai, ia Aueedot «» 11. IS^ wMb the aotee of Alevas' 
am ThfophaneB»pi.l5l,Cedrenae,p.afl9,2^naca%l.ziv.pu64. 

(ISS) Mooieequien, Biprtt dee Lob, I. zH. c. 1 that eMuoit pMleeopber eondllaieB dia il0Me of 
' IdaaverbftnlaeeifaiopiKMidDaloaaBlto^er. 



Hheity and of natiua, whteh ahovM aaver be ntooei fai oppoddDa I 

(980) rnrthecorrapdoaofPaleet{iie,SD00/earabeftK«thaOhriadaaenL^BeethehJMM7aadla» 
' - Aneieat Gaul ie edzmadzed by Dlodonia Blcalue (torn. 1. 1. ▼. p. 3SS), China by the Mahonetaa 
risilan traveHere (Ancient RetaMlmie of ladta and CMna, p. 34, tfaadaied hf aeoaudot, and hia 



and Chrfsilan traveHere ( Ancient RetaMlmie of ladfa and CMna, p. 31 tiaaelaied hf Be o a ud ot, 
^linsr aide the Pdio PreaMre, Ledne KdtSaolea, lam. ziz. p. 43S), and aadve AiMrica Iqr the ^ 
hietorlans (Garctlaaeo do la Vega, 1. lii.e. 13, B]rcaut*e tramladoa ; and DleUoanaire de Ba]rle,tom. 



SB). 1 believe, and hope, that the negroee in their own eountiy, were ezempt from thle moral peatUenoe. 
Cmi) The iDportantaafe^ectof thapttbilB^aeadBBtt aad JadBBMlialBoBelaenlalnadwIth aMch 
Beaming, aad in a dMde etyle, by Chariao Sigondin (L Id. da Jadlelli, in Opp. toBk Ui 6m-e64) ; and & 
'abriUameatmaybefounMliodieBepubUqiiaBoBaliieof Beaa*it(to».it.l.v.pwl--l«l). Tkttm 
wlah fer OMMO abetmea law^ may etud^ Noodt(de JuriadkUeM at Inpeito LibrldHD» Um. t ft SO— 



loa (ad Paadact L Let U. ad Indldd. Lir. dt xttt. ■— t ad Aadqaltat.) aad Qmrtm 
1). 



188 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

the magistrates, and all public causes were decided hj the supreme triburud 
of the people. But a wild democracy, superior to the ionns, too often disdains 
the essential principles, of justice : the pnde of despotism was envenomed by 
plebeian envy, and the heroes of Athens might sometimes applaud the happi- 
ness of the Persian, whose fate depended on the caprice ot a nnf^ tyrant 
Some salutary restraints, imposed by the people on their own passions, were 
at once the caupe and effect of the gravity and temperance of the Romans; 
The rieht of accusation was confined to the magistrates. A vote of the thirty- 
five trioes could inflict a fine ; but the cognizance of all capital crimes was 
reserved bj a fundamental law to the assembly of the centuries, in which the 
wei{;ht of influence and property was sure to preponderate. Repeated procla- 
mations and adjournments were interposed, to allow time for prejudice and 
resentment to subside ; the whole i>roceeding might be annulled by a seasona- 
ble omen, or the opposition of a tribune ; and such popular trials were com-^ 
monly less formidatble to innocence, than they were favourable te niilt. But 
this union of the judicial and legislative powers, left it doubtful whether the 
accused party was pardoned or acquitted ; and in the defence of an illustrious 
client, the oratory of Rome and Athens addressed their arg[uments to the policy 
and benevolence, as well as to the justice of their sovereign. S. The task of 
convening the citizens for the trial of each offender became more difficult, a# 
the citizens and the offenders continually multiplied ; and the readj expedient 
was adopted of delegating the jurisdiction of the people to the ordinary magis* 
trates, or to extraorainaiy inouisUort, In the first ages these questions were 
rare and occasional. In the oeginning of the seventh centuiy of Rome they 
were made perpetual : four prsetors were annually empowered to sit in judgment 
on the state offences of treason, extortion, peculation, and bribery ; and Sylla 
added new pnetors and new questions for those crimes which more directly 
injure the safety of individuals. By these inquMort the trial was prepared 
and directed ; but they could only pronounce the sentence of the majority of 
jud^s» who with some truth, and more prejudice, have been compared to the 
English juries.(SOS) To discharge this important thooeh burthensonne office, 
an annual list of ancient and respectable citizens was formed by the pnetor* 
After many constitutional struggles, they were chosen in equal numbers from 
the senate, the equestrian order, and the people : four hundred and fifty were 
appointed for single questions ; and the various rolls or deeurie$ of judges must 
have contained t& names of some thousand Romans, who represented the judi- 
cial authority of the state. In each particular cause, a sufficient number was 
drawn from the um ; their integrity was g[uarded Iry an oath ; the mode of 
ballot secured their independence ; the suspicion of paitiality was removed by 
the mutual challenges of the accuser and aefendant : and tne iudges of Milo, 
by the retrenchment of fifteen on each side, were reduced to fifty-one voices or 
tablets, of acquittal, of condemnation, or of favourable doubt. (203) 3 In this 
civil jurisdiction, the pnetor of the city was truly a Judge, and almost a leeisla- • 
tor ; but as soon as he had prescribed the action of law, he often referred to a 
delegate the determination of the fact. With the increase of legal proceedings^ 
the tribunal of the centumvirs, in which he presided, acquired more weight and 
reputation. But whether he acted alone^ or with the acfvice of his council, the 
most absolute powers might be trusted to a magistrate who was annually 
chosen by the votes of the people. The rules and precautions of freedom 
have required some explanation ; the order of despotism is simple and inani* 
jnate. Before the age of Justinian, or periiaps of Diocletian, the decuries of 
Roman judges had sunk to an empty title : the humble advice of the assessors 
might be accepted or despised ; and in each tribunal the civil and crimina 

^US) Tbe oOlee boUi at Room wad in Eagiuid, mat to ooniiderad — an occudonal duty, uid w»t a 
flkaglitracy or profeMion. But the obllfauon of a nnanlmpua yerdlct te peculiar to our laws, wlika 
oundemn the jurymen lo underfo the torture from whence they have exempted Uie criminal. 

(90) We are Indebted ibr thto iotereeUng Au:t to a fragment of Aaconiue Pedianue, who flourUif* 
oader Um lelftt of libertue. The ioo> of hie Commentaiiei on the OraHona of Cieerohaa deprived ua«l 
a valttUe fund of hiMorieal aai leKal knowledge. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 189 

jurisdictioTi was admiDistered by a single magistrate, who was raised and dis* 
graced by the will of the emperor. 

A Roman accused of any capital crime might prevent the sentence of the 
law by Toluntary eitlle, or death. Till bis guilt had been legally proved, his 
innocence was pfesumed, and his person was free : till the votes of the last 
eerUwry had been counted and declared, be might peaceably secede to any of 
the alned cities of Italy, or Greece, or Asia.(204^ His fame and fortunes were 
preserved, at least to bis children, by this civil death ; and he might still be 
happjr in every rational and sensual enjoyment, if a mind accustomed to the 
ambitious tumult of Rome could support the uniCbrmity and silence of Rhodes 
or Athens. A bolder effort was reauired to escape m>m the tyranny of the 
Cesars ; but this eflbrt was rendered familiar by toe maxims of the Stoics, the 
example of the bravest Romans, and the legal encouragement of suicide. The 
bodies of condemned criminals were exposed to public ignominy, and their 
children, a more serious evil, were reduced to poverty by the con6scation of 
their fortunes. But if the victims of Tiberius and Nero anticipated the decree 
of the prince or senate, their couraee and despatch were recompensed by the 
applause of the public, the decent nonours of burial, and the validity of their 
testaments.(205^ The exquisite avarice and cruelty of Domitian appear to 
have deprived the unfortunate of this last consolation, and it was still denied 
even by the clemency of tbe Antonines. A voluntary death, which in the case 
of a capital offence, mtervened between the accusation and the sentence, was 
admitted as a confession of guilt, and the spoils of the deceased were seized by 
tiie inhuman claims of the treasury. (206) Yet the civilians have always 
respected the natural right of a citizen to dispose of his life ^ and the pcothu- 
mous disgrace invented by Tarqmn(207) to check the despair of his subjects, 
was never revived or imitated by succeeding tyrants. The powers of this 
world have indeed lost their dominion over him wno is resolved on death ; and 
bis arm can only be restrained by the religious apprehension of a future state.' 
Suicides are enumerated by Vireil among the unfortunate, rather than the 
llfuilty ;(S08) and the poetical fables of the infernal shades could not seriously 
influence the faith or practice of mankind, fiut the precepts of the gospel, or 
the church, have at length imposed a pious servitude on the minds of Cbnstians, 
and condemn them to expect, without a murmur, the last stroke of disease or the 
executioner. 

The penal statutes form a very small proportion of the sixty-two books of 
the Code and Pandects : and, in all judicial proceeding, the life or death of a 
citizen is determined with less caution and delay than tbe most ordinary question 
of covenant or inheritance. This sin^lar distinction, thoue:h sometniiie may 
be allowed for the ui]p^nt necessity ofdefending the peace of society, is cterived 
from the nature of criminal and civil jurisprudence. Our duties to the state 
are simple and uniform ; the law by which he is condemned, is inscribed not 
«nly on brass or marble, but on the conscience of the offender, and his guilt is 
commonly proved by the testimony of a single fact. But our relations to each 
other are various aiid infinite ; our obligations are created, annulled, and modi- 
fied, by injuries, benefits, and promises ; and tbe interpretation of voluntary 
contracts and testaments, which are oAen dictated by fraud or ignorance, affords 
a long and laborious exercise to tbe sagacity of the judge. The business of 
life is multiplied by the extent of commerce and dominion, and tbe residence 

(904) Polyb. I. tL p. Sia The extension of tbe empire end eitf of Rome, obliged Uie exile to seek a 
■tore alftftnt place oi retiremeDt* 

(905) Qui dese etatuebant, bumabantur corporai manebant ieauunenta; preUum ftaUnandL Taeit 
Annal. vl. 35, with Uie notes ofLipeiua. 

(900) Jattui Paulus (Sentent Recepc I. ▼. tit xli. p. 416), Uie PandeeU (LxMli. tit xxi.), the Code 0- ix. 
tit L), Bynkerahoek (torn. L p. 50. Observat J. C. R. iv. 4,) and Monteiqaiea (Eeprit dea Loix, 1. xxix.e. 
9,) define the elril limitations of the liberty and privUegee of suicide. The criminal penalUes are the 
IMroductlon of a later and darker age. 

(907) Plin. Hiat Natiir. xxxvi. 94. When be Iktigned his sobjeets hi building the Capitol, many of the 
lai»aren were provtAed lo despatch themselves: he nailed their dead bodies to cro s sf s . 

(908) The sole resemblance of a violent and premature death has engnged Virgil (Aneid vl. 434— 43B> 
to confound suicide with infants, tovers, and persons unjustly condemned. Heyne, the best of hia edl 
ton. Is at a lo« to deduce Uie klea, or ascertain Uie Jurispcudenee, of the Roman poet. 



1^* THE DECLINE AND FALL 

of t^ ptHie^ in the distant provinces of an empire, is productive of doubC» 
delay, and inevitable appeals from the local to the supreme magistrate. Jvsti- 
nian, the Greek emperor of Constantinople and the East, was the legal successor 
of the Latian shepherd who had planted a colony on the banks of the Tiber* 
ht a period ol* thirteen hundred years, the laws bad reluctantly followed the 
ehanges of government and fnanners ; and the laudable desire of conciliating^ 
ancient names itiih recent institutions, destroyed the harmony and swelled the 
magnitude of the obscure and irreg^ular system. The laws which excuse oa 
any occasions (he ignorance of their subjects, confess their own imperfections ; 
the civil jurisprudence, as it Was abridged bj Justinian, still continued a mys* 
terious science and a profitable trstde, and the innate perplexity of the study 
was involved in tenfoki darkness by the private industiy of the practitioners. 
The expense of the pursuit sonnetimes exceeded the value of the prize, and the 
fairest rights vrere abandoned by (be poverty or prudence of the claimants. 
Such eosuy justice nJ%h( tend to abate the ^int of litigation, but the unequal 
pressure serves only (o increase tbe influence of the rich, and to aggravate the 
miseiy of (he poor. By these dilatory and expensive proceedings, the wealthy 
pleader obtains a more certain advanta^ than he could nope from (he accidental 
corruption of his judge. The experience of an abuse, from which our own 
age and country are tiot periecdy exempt, may sometimes provoke a generous 
iiwiignation, and extort the hasty wish of exchanging our elaborate jurisprudence 
for the simple and summaiy decrees of a Turkish cadL Our caimer reflection 
will suggest, that such forms and delays are necessaiy to guard the person and 
property of the citizen : that the discretion of the judge is the first engine of 
tyranny, and that tbe laws of a fre6 people should foresee and determine 
•very question that may probably arise m tbe exercise of power and the trans- 
actions of industry. But the government of Justinian united the evils of libertr 
and servitude ; and the Romans were oppressed at the same iimt by the muT* 
tiplicity of their laws add the arbitrary will of their master 



CHATPER XLV. 

Htypn of the younger Jwtii^^Embassy of the Jvan^Their teiilemeni on the 
thfwhe-'^onqtteil ofhahf hy the Lombarde — Adaption and reign rfTiberiue 
-^ Mivtrke'^StaJte of mLy under ^ Lombardt and the exarcht—Of 
Rtnemiar^I>iiire»$(fI(ome-'<haracier and pontificate of Gregory the Hnt. 

TA. D. 565. J DuRtiro (be last years of Justinian, his infirm mind was devoted 
to beavenly contemplation, and tie neglected the business of the lower worlds 
His subjects were impatient of the long continuance of his life and reign ; yeti 
aH who were capable of reflection, apprehended tbe moment of his deaths 
which might involve the capital in tumult, and the empire in civil war. Seven-. 
nephews( I ) of (he childless monarch, the sons or grandsons of his brother and, 
sister, had been educated in the splendour of a princely fortune ; they had: 
been shown in hi^h commands to the provinces and armies ; their characters^ 
were known, their followers were zealous, and as the jealousy of age post* 
poned the declaration of a successor, they mi^ht expect with equal hopes the 
inheritance of their uncle. He expired m his paUuce after a reign of thirty- 
eight 3 ears; and the decisive opportunity was embraced by the friends of 
Justin the son of Vigilantia.(2) At the hour of midnight, his domestics were 
awakened by an importunate crowd who thundered at his door, and obtained 
admittance by revealing themselves to be the principal members of the senate. . 

(1) S«e Uiefkvllror Jwdii tod Jofltlniaii In the Fmilte BynntfiMB of Dueuife, p. flS— 101. The • 
devoat civtilanB Ludewlg (in Vic Joitinlan, p. 131,) and Heinaodof (lUit Juri*. Bomui. p-374,} have 
■inoe Ukiatrated Uie genealogy of Uieir fnvouiite prince. 

Ci) In die bblory of Jinltn'f elevatloa I have traariated fatto ttanple and eondM praie, tbe elglit 
bundled yeracB of Uie two flm booln of Corippoa, de Laudiboe Joelinl, Appendix. Hiit. Byaairt. p iSt. 
-410 Kooie,1777. 



or THE ROMAN EMPIRE. Iff 

Thm^ welcome deputies announced the recent and momentoos secret of the- 
empeffor's decease : reported, cn* perhaps invented, his dyinr choice of the heat 
beloved and most deservfrv of bis nephews^ and conjured Justin to prevent 
the disorders of the multitude, if they should perceive, with the return of JIghtr 
that tt)ej were leA without a master. After composing^ his countenance to sur-^ 
prise, sorrow, and decent modesty, Justin, by the advice of his wife Sophia». 
submitted to the authority of the senate. He was conducted with speed and 
silence to the palace, the guards saluted their new sovereign, ^Mid the martial^ 
and religious rites of his coronation were dili^ntiv accomplished. By the 
hands of the proper officers he was infested with the Imperial garments, the 
led buskins, white tunic, and purple robe. A ibrtunate soldier, whom he 
instantly promoted to the rank of tribune, encircled Ms neck with a roilitaiy 
collar; four robust youths exalted him on a shield : he stood firm and erect to 
receive the adoration of his sutgects ; and their choice was sanctioned by the. 
benediction of the patriarch, who imposed the diadem on the head of an ortho* 
doz prince. The nippodiome was already filled with iimumerable multitudes^ 
and no sooner did the emperor appear on his throne, than the voices of the blue 
and the graen factions were confounded in the same loyal acclamations, la 
the speeches which Justin addressed to the senate and people, he promised to- 
correct the abuses which had di^^ced the age of his predecessor, displayed 
the maxims of a just and beneficent government, and dcH:lared, that on the 
approaching calends of January ,(3) he would revive in his own person the 
name and liberality of a Roman cpnsul. The immediate disdiaige of hi» 
iiiicle*s debts exhibited a solid pledge of his faith and generositv : a train o# 
porters, laden with b^ of gold, advanced into the midst of the bippodrome^ 
and the hopeless creditors of Justinian accepted this equitable payment as a 
voluntary gift. Before the end of three years, his example was imitated and 
surpassed by the empress Sophia, who delivered many indigent citizens froii^ 
the weight of debt and usury ; an act of benevolence the b^t entitled to gra- 
titude, since it relieves the most intolerable distress : but in which the bounty 
of a prince is the most liable to be abused by the claims of prodigality wA 
firaua.f4) 

[A. D. M6.1 'On the seventh day of his reign, Justhi gave audience to the 
ambassadora <» the Avars, and tlie scene was (tecorated to impress the Barkn* 
rians with astonishment, veneration, and terror. From the palace gate, the 
q>acious courts and long porticoes were lined with the lofty crests and gilt 
bucklers of the guards, who presented their spears and axes with more confi 
dence than they would have shown in a field of battle. The c^Boers wIkv 
exercised the power, or attended the person, of the prince, were attired in their 
richest liabtts/and arranged accordii^ to the military arid civil order of the 
hierarchy. When the veil of the sanctuary was withdrawn, the ambassador» 
beheld tne emperor of the East on his throne, beneath a canopy or dome, which 
was supported by four columns, and crowned with a winged figure of Victory. 
In the fint emotions of surprise, they submitted to tbe servile adoration of the 
B^rzantine court ; but as soon as they rose from tbe ground, Targetius, the 
chief of tbe embassy, expressed the freedom and pride of a Barlmrian. He 
extolled, by the toneue ot his interpreter, the greatness of the chagan, by whose 
clemency the kipg(»:>ms of the South were permitted to exist, whose victorioua^ 
subjects had traversed the frozen rivers of Scythia, and who now covered the- 
bamts of the Danube with innumerable tents. The late emperor had culti- 
vated, with annual and costly giiU, the friendship of a grateful monarch, and 
the enemies ol Rome had respected the allies of the A van. The same pru- 
dence would instruct tbe nephew of Justinian to imitate the liberality of bis 
uncle, and to purchase the olessin^ of peace from an m vincible people who 
del^hted and excelled in the exercise of war. The reply of the emperor was 

C3) It is turprltlnf how Pigi (Crftka In Airoar. Biaron. torn. 1i. S3S,) eoald be tempunl by wnf cbronMea 
tn contrsdiet the ptain and decMve ten of Corippui (vicina dona, L U. 354, Tfelna dlea, I iv, 1), and to> 
pmrpo'ie lUI A. D. 587, ihe conmilataiu of Jutlin. ^^ 

Ct) Thef)phaii.Chronocraph.p.90». WbeneTerOedr«iinaorZ<maFuar»inflretraoKnlnn,Rliwpcr 
fluojB 10 allcj^e their tealimony. 



in THE DECLINE AND FALL 

delivered in the same strain of hauditj defiance, and he derived his confidanet 
irom the God of the Christians, the ancient gloiy of Rome, and the recent 
triumphs of Justinian. ''The empire," said he, ''abounds with men, and 
liorses, and arms, sufficient to defend our frontiers, and to chastise the Barba- 
rians. You offer aid, you threaten hostilities : we despise your enmity and 
your aid. The conquerors of the Avars solicit our alliance ; shall we dread 
their fugitives and exiles ?(5) The bounty of our uncle was granted to your 
miseiy, to your humble prayers. From us you shall receive a more important 
obligation, the knowledge of your own weakness. Retire from our presence ; 
the lives of ambassadors are safe ; and if you return to implore our pardon, 
perhaps you will taste of our benevolence. '\6) On the report of his ambassa 
dors, the chagan was awed by the apparent nrmness of a Roman emperor, of 
whose character and resources he was ignorant. Instead of executing his 
threats against the Eastern empire, he marched into the poor and savage coun- 
tries of Germany, which were subject to the dominion of the Franks. After 
two doubtful battles, he consented to retire, and the Austrasian kine relieved 
the distress of his camp with an immediate supply of com and cattle.(^7) Such 
■repeated disappointments had chilled the spirit of the Avajrs, and their power 
would have dissolved away in the Sarmalian desert, if the alHance of Alboin/ 
king of the Lombards, had not given a new object to their arms, and a lasting 
settlement to their wearied fortunes. 

While Alboin served under his father's standard, he encountered in battle^ 
and transpierced with his lance, the rival prince of the Gepidas. The Lom- 
bards, who applauded such early prowess, requested his father wkh unanimous 
acclamations, that the heroic youth, who had shared the dangers of the field, 
might be admitted to the feast of victoiy. " You are not unmindful," replied 
the inflexible Audoin, " of the wise customs of our ancestors. Whatever may 
be his merit, a prince is incapable of sitting at table with his father till he has 
received his arms from a toreig^n and royal hand." Alboin twwed with 
reverence to the institutions of his countiy : selected forty companions, aind 
boldly visited the court of Turisund king of the Gepidse, who embraced and 
entertained, according to the laws of hospitality, the murderer of his son. At 
the banquet, while Alboin occupied the seat of the youth whom he had slain, a 
tender remembrance arose in the mind of Turisund. " How dea^i8 that place 
— how hateful is that person" — were the words that escaped with a sigh, from 
the indignant father. His grief exasperated the national resentment of the 
Gepidse ; and Cunimund. his surviving son, was provoked by wine, or fraternal 
affection, to the desire of vengeance. " The Lombards," said the rude Bar- 
barian, " resemble, in figure and in smell, the mares of our Sarmatian plains." 
And this insult was a coarse allusion to the white bands which enveloped their 
legs. "Add another resemblance," replied an audacious Lombara; "you 
have felt how strongly they kick. Visit the plain of Asfeld, and seek for the 
bones of thy brother : they are mingled with those of the vilest animals." The 
Gepidae, a nation of warriors, started from their seats, and the fearless Alboin, 
with his forty companions, laid their hands on their swords The tumult was 
appeased* by the venerable interposition of Turisund. He saved his own 
honour, and the life of his guest ; and after the solemn riehts of investiture, dis- 
missed the stranger in the bloody arms of his son ; the gitt of a weeping parent. 
Alboin returned m triumph ; and the Lombards, who celebrated his matchlesi 

C5) Corippus, 1. 111. 390. The unquestionable tenie relates to the Turki, tbe conqueron of the A van ; 
•fmt the word aeultor bai no apparent meaning, and the aole MS. of Corippoa, fitwi whence the flrat edi- 
iloD (15B1, apad Plantin) was printed, la no longer vlilble. The laat editor, Foggini of ]ton%haa iaaenai 
■the conlectural emendation of toUam : but the proofs of Ducange ( JoinviUe, Dfisert xvl. p. S3S— 340,) for 
the earlV use of this title amoni; the Turiu and Persians, are weak or ambiguous. And I must ineiioe to 
the aathorlty of d*Herbelot (Bibliothlque OrieaL p. 8SS), who ascribes the word to the Arabic and Chal- 
dean tongues, and the date to the beginning of the eleventh century, when it was bestowed bj the khalif 



t they drew from a common original. 

S) For the Austraalan war, see Menander (Excerpt. LmL p. 110), Gregory of Toun (BlM. Fttac 1. Iv 
and Paul the deacon (de Oeat. Langobard. 1. iL e. Id). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 193 

iifU«f»idi^9 weie compelled to praise the virtues of an eDei]j7.(8) In this 
«itraofdloafT visit, be bad probaBIy seen the dauj^hter of Cunimufld* v\rbo spoo 
after asceoaed the throne of the Gepide. Her. name was Rosamond, an 
appellation expressive of femak beauty, and which our own history or romance 
bis consecrated to amorous tales. The king of the Lombards (the father of 
Alboio no loagM lived) ^as contracted to the granddaughter of Clovis : but the 
restraints of faith and policy soon yielded to the hope of possessing the fair Rosa- 
moad, and of insulting her ivmf and nation. The arts of persuasion were 
tried without success; and the impatient lover, by force and stratagem, 
obtained the object of his desires.^ War was the consequence which he Ipre- 
aaw and solitited ; but the Lombards could not long withstand the furious 
assault of the Gepidae, who were sustained by a Roman army. And as the 
-offer of naarriage was rejected with contempt, Alboin was compiled to relin 
quish his prey, and to partake of the disgrace which he had inflicted on the 
AOuse of Cummund.(d) 

[A. D. 666.] When a public quarrel is envenomed by private iqjurias^ a 
blow that is not mortal or decisive can be productive om^ of a short truce, 
which allows the unsuccessful combatant to sharpen his arms for a new 
^ncounter^ The strength of AJboin had been found unequal to the gratificatipa 
of his love, ambition, and revenge : he condescended to implore the formidable 
aid of the cbagan : and the aiiguments that he employed are expressive of tne 
art and policy of tne Barbarians. In the attack of the Gepidao, he had been 
prompted by the just desire of extirpating a people, whom their alliance with 
the Roman empire had rendered the common enemies of the nations, and the 
personal adversaries of the cbagan. If the forces of the Avars and Lombards 
should unite in this glorious quarrel, the victory was secure, and the reward 
inestimable : the Damri)e, the Hebrus, Italy, and Constantinople, would be 
exposed, without a barrier, to their invincible arms, fiut if tbcjr hesitated or 
delayed to prevent the malice of the Romans, the same spirit which had 
insulted, would pursue the Avars to the extremity of the earth. These speciouft 
zeaaons were heard by the cbagan with coldness and disdain : he detained the 
Lombard ambassadors in his camp, protracted the negotiation, and by turns 
alleged his want of inclinationy or bis want of ability, to undertake this im • 
pcNTtant entemrise. At length he signified the ultimate price of alliance, that 
>the Lombards should immediately present him with the tithe of their cattle , 
4hat the spoils and captives should be equally divided ; but that the lands of 
the Gepid» should become the sole patrimony of the Avars. Such hardi con- 
'ditrons were eagerly aocepted by the passions of Alboin : and as the Romans 
were dissatisfied with the ingratitude and perfidy of the Gepidfls, Justin aban 
<doned that incorrigible people to their fate, and remained the tranquil spectatm 
of this unequal conflict. The despair of Cunimund was active and dangesous 



He was informed that the Avars bad entered his confines ; but on the strong 
assurance, that, after the defeat of the Lombards, these foreign. invaders would 
'eaaWf be repelled, he rushed forward to encounter the implacable enemy of his 
name and fiimily. But the courage of the Gepid» could secure them no inorp 
than an honourable death. The bravest of the nation fell in the field of battle , 
4he king of the Lombards contemplated with delight the head of Cunimund, 
-and his skull was fashioned into a cup, to satiate the hatred of the conqueror 
or perhaps to comply with the savage custom of his country.(lO) AAer this 
victory, no farther obbtacle could impede the progress of the confederates, and 
Ihey faithfully executed the terms of^ their agreement.(n) The fair countries 

(8) Paal Wwnefrld, die &mum of PiiuU. dt Gert. Lwiioobard. I. i. c. 33, 94. IXw plctam of nadoaal 
■Mnaeni, though radaly sksiebed, are mare IXyafy And fkiUiftil Uwui thoM of Bede, or Qnmy of Toon. 

(9) Tlio atorj i* told hy an tepoMor (TiMoplvlMl. Sioioerat. I. vi. c 10), bvi ha bad ait enouf ta to 
kiUd lua fictioiu on paklie and not«1oiiathet» 

(10) Ii appean from Strabo, Pttajr, and Ammianut Marcellinoa, Uiat the aama piacUoe was commoa 



(10) Ii appean rrom Strabo, Pttajr, and Ammianut Marcelimiia, that the aama piacUoe was commoa 
MMM the Sqrtlii«n tribes (Mommri, Bcriplara* Ear. Italia, torn. i. p. «M>. The tetit^ of North America 
•re likewise trophlea of valoor. The skuU of CaaimttBd was presmrrad above two hundred yean among 
Jle Lombards; and Paul himaelf wm cm of the gneili to whom dHkn Ratchia exhibited tiila cup en a 
ki9bfcaiiTalCl.U.e.98>. 

(11) Paal. I- 1. c S7, Menander, in fixcerpt Legat p. UO, 111. 

Vol. IIl.-O 



194 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

of Walachia, Moldavia, Transjlvaniay and the parts of Hunganr bej>Qnd the 
Danube, were occupied, without resistance, by a new colony of Scythians; and' 
tile Dacian empire of tftie chagans subsisted with splendour above two hundred 
and thirlT years. The nation of the Gepidse was dissolved : but in the distri- 
bution of the captives, the slaves of the Avars weie less fortunate than the 
companions of the Lombards, whose generosity adopted a valiant foe, and. 
whose freedom was incompatible with cool and deliberate tyranny. One moiety 
of the spoil introduced into the camp of Albotn more wealth than a Barbarian' 
could readily compute. The fair Rosamond was persuaded, or compelled, to 
acknowledge the rights of her victorious lover ; ana the daughter of Cuniround 
apf)eared to foigive those crimes which might be imputed to her own irre* 
sistible charms. 

[A. D. 667.] The destruction of a mighty kingdom establislied the feme of 
Alboin. In the days of Charlema^, the Bavarians, the Saxons, and the other 
tribes of the Teutonic language, still repeated the songs which described the 
heroic virtues, the valour, lioerality, and fortune of the king of the Lombards.(13^ 
But his ambition was yet unsatisfied ; and the conqueror of the Gepidse tumea 
his eyes from the Danube to the richer banks of the Po and the Tiber. Fifteen 
years had not elapsed, since his subjects, the confederates of Narses, had 
visited the pleasant climate of Italy : the mountains, the rivers, the highways 
were famOiar to their memory : the report of their success, perhaps the view 
of their spoils, had kindled in the rising generation the flame of emulation and 
enterprise. Their hopes were encouraged by the spirit and eloquence of 
Albom ; and it is affirmed, that he spoke to their senses, by producii^, at the 
royal feast, the fairest and most exquisite fruits that grew spontaneously in the 
garden of the world. No sooner had he erected his standard, than the native 
stren&^h of the Lombards was multiplied b^ the adventurous youth of Germany 
and £:y4hia. The robust peasantry of Noricum and Pannonia had resumed tbie 
manners of Barbarians ; and the names of the Gepidae, Bulgarians, Sarmatians» 
and Bavarians, may be. distinctly traced in the provinces of Ita[y.(l3) Of the 
Saxons, the old allies of the Lombards, twent]^ thousand warriors, with tlieir 
wives and children, accepted the invitation of Alboin. Their braveiy contra 
buted tohis success : but the accession or the absence of their numbers was 
not sensibly felt in the magnitude of his host. Every mode of religion was 
freely practised by its respective votaries. The king of the Lombards bad 
been educated in the Arian heresy ; but the Catholics, in their public worship, 
were allowed to pray for his conversion ; while the more stubborn Barbarians 
sacrificed a she-goat, or perhaps a captive, to the gods of their fathers.(14) 
The Lombards, and their confederates, were united by their common attachment 
to a chief, who excelled in all the virtues and vices of a savage hem ; and the 
vigilance of Alboin provided an ample magazine of ofiensive and defensive 
arms for the use of the expedition. The portable^ wealth of the Lombards 
attended the march ; their lands they cheerful ly reliiiquished to the Avars, on 
the solemn promise, which was niade and accepted witnout a smile, that if they 
failed in the conquest of Italy, these volunta^ exiles should be reinstated ia 
their former possessions. 

They might have failed, if Narses had been the anta^nist of the Lombards; 
and the veteran warriors, the associates of his Gothic victory, would have 
encountered with reluctance an enemy whom they dreaded and esteemed. But 

(IS) Ut haelenui etiam tain apud Bi^oarioram sentem, qaam ec Sczonam aed tt alloa i^Juadem lingua 
bomlnea... .In eorum carralnllnu celebratur. Paul, 1. 1 c 87. He died A. D. 799 (Muratori, in PnefaC 
torn. I. p. 397). Theae German aonn, aome of wbldi mlf hi Iw aa old aa Tadtua (de MorUnia Genn. c S), 
were complJed and tranaerlbed by Gharionagne. Barban et antlqulairinia eannlna, qnibua veceraa 
reaum actua et bella canebantur aerlpalt meroorteaue mandavlt (Egtnard, in VlL Carol. Magn. c. S9, p. 
130, 131). The poema, which Goldaat commenda (AnimadTera. ad Eginaid, p. 907), appear to be reccot 
and contemptible romancea. 

(13) The other natlona are rehearaed by Paul (I- U* c 6. 98). Muratori (AntlcbiU Iiallanc, lorn L dla- 
■art. i. p. 4,) has diaoovered the vtllafe of the Bavariana, three milea from Modena. 

(14) Gregory, the Roman, (Dialog, i. ill. c. 97. 98, apod Beron. Annal. Bodea. A. D. 579, No. 10,) a«i^ 
poaaa that they Ukewiae adored thia abe-goat. I know but of one religion in which the god and the vtecln 
•latbeaame. 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE. 1»6 

die weaknets of the Byzantine court was sobeervient to the Barbarian cause ^ 
and it was for the ruin of Italy, that the emperor once listened to the complaint'f 
of his subjects. The virtues of Narses were stained with avarice ; and in his 
provincial reign of fifteen yeara, he accumulated a treasure of gold and silver 
which surpasMd the modesty of a private fortune. His government wa» 
oppressive or unpopular, and the general discontent was eipres^ with freedom 
by the deputies ot Rome. Before the throne of Justin tbev boldly declared, 
that their Uothic servitude had been more tolerable than the despotism of a 
Greek eunuch ; and that, unless their tyrant were instantly removed, they would 
consult their own happiness in tbe choice of a master. The apprehension of 
a revolt was urged by the voice of envy and detraction, whicb had so recent^ 
triumphed over the merit of Belisarius. A new eiarch, Longinus, was ap- 
pointed to supersede the conqueror of Italy, and tbe base motives of his recalK 
were revealed in the insulting mandate of the empress Sophia, ^ that he sbouSd 
leave to men the exercise of arms, and return to his proper station among the* 
maidens of the palace, where a distaff should be again placed in the hand of 
the eunuch." ^ I will spin her such a thread as she shall not easily unravel V* 
is said to have been the reply which indignation and conscious virtue extorted 
from the hero. Instead ot attending, a slave and a victim, at the gate of the- 
Byzantine palace, he retired to Naples, from whence (if any creait is due to 
the belief of the times) Narses invited the Lombards to chastise tbe ing^ratitude 
of the prince and people. (16) But the passions of the people are furious and 
changeable, and the Romans soon recollected the merits, or dreaded the resent- 
ment, of their victorious eerKral. B^ the mediation of the pope, who undertook 
a special pilgrimage to Naples, their repentance was accepted ; and Narsev 
assuming a milder aspect and a more dutiful language, consented to fix his 
residence in the Capitol. His death,(l6) though in the extreme period of old 
^^9 was unseasonable and premature, since hii genius alone could have repaired 
the last and fatal error of his life. The reality, or the suspicion, of a conspiracy,, 
disarmed and disunited the Italians. The soldiers resented the di^race, and 
bewailed the loss, of their general. They were ignorant of their new exarch ; 
and Longinus was himself ignorant of the state of the army and the province. 
In the preceding years, Italy had been desolated by pestilence and famine, and 
a disa£fected people ascribed the calamities of Nature, to the guilt or folly of 
their rulers. (17) 

{A. D. 568 — 570.] Whatever might be the grounds of his security, Alboin* 
neither expected nor encountered a Roman army in the field. He ascended 
the Julian Alps, and looked down with contempt and desii^ on tbe fruitful 
plains to which his victory communicated the perpetual appellation of Lom- 
bard v. A faithful chieftain, and a select band, were stationed at Forum Julii, 
the modem Friuli, to guard the passes of the mountains. The Lombards- 
respected tbe strength of Pavia, and listened to the prayers of the Trevisans z^ 
their slow and heavy multitudes proceeded to occupy the palace and city of 
Verona : and Milan, now risine from her ashes, was invested by tbe powers o£ 
Alboin five months after his departure from Pannonia. Terror preceded hi»< 
march : he found every where, or he left, a dreair solitude ; and the pusillani- 
mous Italians presumed, without a trial, that toe stranger was invincible. 
Escaping to lakes, or rocks, or morasses, tbe affrighted crowds concealed some 
fragments of their wealth, and delayed the moment of the ir serv itude. PauliniK^ 

(15) llie cbarf e of the deacon Bgaintt Jfntwm (I- ii> c. 5,) may be croundtaM; but the weak tupokmf of 
the cardinal (Baron. 'Aiiiial. Eccieii. A. D. 567, No. 8—12,) la rejecletTby the biwi criiica— Pagi (uhd.TI. p 
639,S10>, Muratori (Annali dMtalla, torn; v. p. 160— l<S3,) and the laai editora, HnraiiiM Blancua (Script. 
Keruin Italic, torn. i. p. 497, 438,) and Pbiiija Arselatus (Sifon. Opera, totu. li. p. 11, 18). Tbe Naracs 
wtw avltied at the coronation of Juatin (Coripput, L lil. 8S1,) la clearly undentood to be a diflbrout 



(IS) The death of Naraes is mentioned by Paul, I. ii. c. 11. Anastaa. in ViL Johan. iil. p. 43. Axnel 
loa, Liber Pontifical. Raven, in Script. Rer. Iiallcanira, torn. il. part i. p 114. 134. Yet I cannot beilev* 
with AfnellUB tliat Maiaea was nineiy-flve years of a(e. b it probable that all his exploits were perforined 
•t fourscore 1 

f 17) The deeipis of Narses and of the Lombards for the invasion of Italy, are exposed in the laatchaplv 
■f iba Orit booICi and the flnt sevao chapters of the second boob, of Paul the deacon. 

03 



116 THE DECLINE AND FALL 

the patriarch of Aquileia, removed bis treasures, sacred and profane, to tbe isi« 
of GradoX^B) and his successors were adopted bj the infant republic oi 
Venice, which was continually enriched by tbe public calamities. Honoratus, 
who filled the chair of St. Ambrose, had credulously accepted the faithless 
offers of a capitulation : and the archbishop, with the cleig;^ and nobles of 
Milan, were driven by the perfidy of Alboin, to seek a refuge in the less acces- 
sible ramparts of Genoa. Along the maritime coast, Uie courage of the 
inhabitants was supported by the facility of supply, the hopes of relief, and 
the power of escape ; but from the Trentine hills to the gates of Ravenna and 
Rome, the inland regions of Italy became, without a battle or a siege, the lasting 
patrimony of the Lombards. The submission of tbe people invited the Bar- 
barian to assume the character of a lawful sovereign, and the helpless exarch 
was confined to the office of announcing to the emperor Justin, the rapid and 
iiretrievable loss of his provinces anacities.(19) One city which had been 
diligently fortified bjr the Goths, resisted the anns of a new invader ; and 
while Italy was subdued by the flying detachments of the Lombards, the royal 
camp was fixed above- three years before tbe western gate of Ticinuro, or Pavia. 
The same courage which obtains the esteem of a civilized enemy, provokes 
the fury of a savage, and the impatient besieger had bound himself oy a tre- 
mendous oath, that age, and sex, and dignity, should be confounded in a general 
massacre. Tbe aid of fann'neat length enabled him to execute his bloody 
vow ; but as Alboin entered the gate, bis horse stumbled, fell, and could not be 
raised from the ground. ^ One of bis attendants was prompted by compassion, 
.or piety, to interpret this miraculous sign of the wrath of Heaven ; the con- 
queror paused and relented : he sheathed his sword, and, peacefully reposing 
himself in the palace of Theodoric, proclaimed to the trembling multitude, 
that thcT should live and obey. Delighted with the situation of a city, which 
was endeared to his pride by the difficulty of the purchase, the prince of the 
Lombards disdained the ancient dories of Milan ; and Pavia, during some ages, 
was respected as the capital of tne kingdom of Italy. (20) 

[A. D. 573.J The reign of the founder was splendid and transient ; and 
before he could regulate his new conquests, Alboin fell a sacrifice to domestic 
treason and female revenge. In a palace near Verona, which had not been 
erected for tbe Barbarians, he feasted the companions of his arms ; intoxication 
was tbe reward of valour, and tbe kir^ himself was tempted by appetite, or 
vanity, to exceed the ordinary measure of his intemperance. AAer draining 
many capacious bowls, of Rhtttian or Falemian wine, he called for the skuH 
of Cunimund, the noblest and most precious ornament of his sideboard. The 
cup of victory was accepted with horrid applause by the circle of the Lombard 
chiefs. ^ Fill it again with wine," exclaimed the inhuman conqueror, " fill it 
to the brim ; carry this goblet to the queen, and request in my name that she 
would rejoice with her father." In an agony of grief and rage, Rosamond 
bad strength to utter, "Let the will of my lord be obeyed!" and touching it 
with her lips pronounced a silent imprecation, that the insult should be washed 
away in the blood of Alboin. Some indulgence might be due to the resent- 
ment of a daughter, if she had not already violated the duties of a wife. Im- 
placable in her enmity, or inconstant in her love, the queen of Italy had stooped 
mm the throne to tbe arms of a subject, and Helmichis, the kinjg^'s armour- 
bearer, was the secret minister of her pleasure and revenge. Against the pro- 

(18) Which from this translation wai called New Aquileia (Cbron. Yenet. p. 3). The patriarch o 
Grado aoon became the fliat dtlzen of the republic (p. 0, &c.), but his seat was not removed to Venice till 
the vear 1430. He ia now decorated with titles and honours ; but the leeaiusof the church has bowed 
to that of the atate, and the goveroment of a Catholic city is strictly Prrsbyterian. Tboroaasin, Dia- 
eipline de I^Egllse, torn. I. p. 156, 157. 161—165. Amelot do la Houssaye, Gouvemement de Venibe, torn. 
i.p.«56-«81. 

(19) PanI has clven a description of Italy, as It was tlicn divided into eisbteen re^loDS (L ii. c. 14—91). 
The Dtsseriatio Chrorographica de ItallA Hedii JB\% by Father BeretU, a BenedicUne monk, and reglua 
profhsaor at Pavia, has been usefully consulted. 

(20) For the conquest of Italy, see the original materials of Paul (I. It. c 7—10. IS. 14. 85, 96, 97), the 
tfoquent narrative of Sigonliis (torn. U. de Regno Italic, 1. 1, p. 13—19), and the cofreet and criUcal review 
•THuratorKAnnali d*Iiaiia, torn. v. p. 164—180). 



OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, W 

poial oi tUe mordery he could do longer uige the scruples of fidelity or gnii" 
tilde ; but Helmicbis trembled, when be revolved the danger as welh as the 
guilty when he recollected the matchless strength and intrepidity of a warrior, 
whom be bad so often attended in the field of battle. He pressed, and ob 
tainedy that one of the bravest champbnsof the Lombards should be associated 
to the enterprise, but no more than a promise of secrecy could be drawn from 
the gallant Peredeus ; and the mode of seduction employed by Rosamond 
betrays her shameless inseosibilitjr both to honour and love. She supplied the 
place of one of her female attendants who was beloved by Peredeus, and con- 
trived some excuse for darkness and silence, till she could Inform her companion 
that be had enjoyed the queen of the Lombards, and that his own death, or 
the death of Alboin, must be the consequence of such treasonable adultery. 
In this alternative, he chose rather to be the accomplice than the victim of 
Rosamond,(21) whose undaunted spirit was incapable of fear or remorse. She 
e]giected aod soon found alavourable moment, when the kiitfj, oppressed with 
wine, had retired from the table to his afternoon slumbers. Eiis faithless spouse 
was anxious for his health and repose : the gates of the palace were shut, the 
arms removed, the attendants dismissed, and Rosamond, after lulliiog him to 
rest by her tender caresses, unbolted the chamber door, and uiged the reluctant 
conspirators to the instant execution of the deed. On the first alarm the war- 
rior started from his coudi ; his sword, which be attempted to draw, had been 
fastened to (he scabbard by the hand of Rosamond ; and a small stool, his 
only weapon, could not long protect him from the spears of the assassins. The 
daughter of Uunimund smiled in his fall ; his body was buried under the stair- 
case of the palace, and the grateful posterity of the Lombards revered the 
tomb and the memoiy of their victorious leader. 

The ambitious Rosamond aspired to reign in the name of her lover ; the city 
and palaee of Verooa were awed by her power, and a faithful band of her 
native Gepidee was prepared to applaud the revenge, and to second the wishes 
of their aovere^n. But the Lombard chiefs, who fled in the first moments of 
consternation and disorder, had resumed their courage and collected their 
powers ; and the nation, instead of submitting to her reign, 'demanded with 
unanimous cries that justice should be executed on the guil^ spouse and the 
murderers of their king. She sought a refuge among the enemies of her coun- 
try, and a criminal who deserved the abhorrence of mankind was protected by 
tfcie selfish policy of the exarch. With her daughter, the heiress of the Lom- 
bard throne, her two lovers, her trusty Gepidae. and the spoils of the palace of 
Verona, Rosamond descended the Aajge and the Po, and was transported by 
a Greek vessel to the safe harbour of luivenna. Longinus beheld with delight 
the charms and treasures of the widow of Alboin : her situation and her past 
conduct mi^ht justify the most licentious proposals ; and she readily listened 
to the passion of a minister, whcsjeven m the decline of the empire, was 
respected as the equal of kings. The death of a jealous lover was an easy 
ana mteful sacrifice ; and as Helmichis issued from the bath, he received the 
deaclly potion from the hand of his mistress. The taste of the liquor, its 
speedy operation, and his experience of the character of Rosamond, convinced 
him that he was poisoned : he pointed his dagzer to her breast, compelled her 
to drain the remainder of the cup, and expired in a few minutes, with the con- 
solation, that she could not survive to emoy the fruits of her wickedness. The 
daughter of Alboin and Rosamond, with tbe richest spoils of the Lombards, 
was embarked for Constantinople ; the surprising strength of Peredeus amused 
and terrified the imperial court ;* his blindness and revenge exhibited an imper- 
fect copy of the adventures of SaroSon. By tbe free suffirage of the nation, 
in the assembly of Pavia, Clepho, one of their noblest chiefs, was elected as 
the successor of Alboin. Before the end of eighteen months, the throne was 

(Bl) The claarieal rradar will reco11«et the wlA and morder ofCaodauIes, lo agreeably toM In tbe flnt 
book of Heiodouii. The choice of Oygee, atpttru avros nsfnuvatt may serve aa tlie escoae of Peredeua ; 
■Bd th\m wofi ioainaatlon of an odious idea haa been iioiiated by Uie beet writeri of aniiqalty. Oraviiu, 
9d Ckecoa. OraL pro Milone, e. 10. 



ns THE DECLINE AND FALL 

polluted by a second murder ; CJepho was stabbed by the hand of a domestic , 
the regal office was suspended above ten years, durii^ the mincvity of his son 
Autharis; and Italy was divided and oppressed by a ducal anstocracy of 
thirty tyrants.(22) 

when the nepoe^ of Justinian ascended the throne, he proclaimed a new 
era of happiness and gloiT. The'annals of the second Justin(S3) are maiked 
with disgrace abroad ana raiseiy at home. In the West, the Roman empire 
was afflicted by the loss of Italy, the desolation of Africa, and the conquest of 
the Persians. Injustice prevailed both in the capital and the provinces ; the 
rjch trembled for their property, the poor for their safety, the ordinary magis- 
trates were ignorant or venal, the occasional remedies appear to have been 
arbitraiT and violent, and the complaints of the people could oo loi^r be 
silencea by the splendid names of a legislator and a con(]ueror. The opinioD 
which imputes to the prince all the calamities of.his times, may be counte- 
nanced by the historian as a serious truth or a salutaiy prejudice. Yet a candid 
euspicion will arise, that the sentiments of Justin were pure and benevolent, 
ana that he might have filled his station without reproach, if the faculties of 
liis mind had not been impaired by disease, which deprived the emperor of 
the use of his feet, and confined him to the palace, a stranger to the complaints 
of the people and the vices of the government. The taray knowledge of bis 
own impotence determined him to lay down the weight of the diadem ; and 
in the choice of a worthy substitute, he showed some symptoms of a disceroiqg 
and even magnanimous spirit. The only son of Justin and Sophia died in his 
infancy; their daughter Arabia was the wife of Baduarius,(24) superintendent 
of the palace, and afterward commander of the Italian armies, who vainly 
aspired to confirm the rights of marriage by those of adoption. While the 
empire appeared an obiect of desire, Justin was accustomed to behold with 
'ealousy and hatred his brothers and cousins, the rivals of his hopes ; nor could 
le depend on the gratitude of those who would accept the purple as a restitu- 



t 



lion, rather than a gift. Of these competitors, one had been removed by exile, 
jsknd afterward by death ; and the emperor himself had inflicted such cruel 
insults on another, that he must either dread his resentment or despise his 
patience. This domestic animosity was refined into a generous resofution of 
seeking a successor, not in his familj^^ but in the republic : and the artful 
:Sophia recommended Tiberius,(26) his faithful captain of the guards, whose 
virtues and fortune the emperor mis^ht cherish as the fruit oFhis judicbus 
xhoice. The ceremony of his elevation to the rank of Cesar or Augustus, was 
performed in the portico of the palace, in the presence of the patriarch and 
the senate. Justin collected the remaining strength of his mind and body, but 
4he popular belief that his speech was inspired by the deity, betrays a very 
iiumole opinion both of the man and of the times.(26) *' You behold,'* said 
the emperor, " the ensigns of supreme power. You are about to receive them, 
i)ot from my hand, but from the hand of God. Honour them, and from them 
you will derive honour. Respect the empress, your mother ; you are now her 

(99) Bee Um blicory of Paol, L ii. c 98—33. I have borrowed eome iniereetlng circumatancee from Uie 
Liber PontUlcalu of Afneiliie, In ScripL Rer. Ital. torn. U. p. 194. Of aU chroooloclcal guidee, M iintort 

(93} The orisfntr aadiors for the retgo of Jaeiin Ura youiMer. are Erafrloe. Hlat Eodca. 1. t. c 1—19. 
Theophanei, ia Chrooograph. p. SOi-ftiO, Zooaraa, torn. IL 1. xIt. p. 70—79, Cedreniis, in Gompend. 

(94) mqneltorqae botob eacn Badvarim autaB. 

Saeceeeoi eoceri noz fketin Gura palati, Corlpjnie. 

Baduarlne !■ enainerated among Um deeoendaota and alllee of the houae of Jintlnlan. A flunily of noble 
Teoetians (Can Badttro) built chttrchei, and gave dttkee to the republle ae early aa the ninth century, 
•and if thdt deeoent be admitted, no Itlaga In Europe can produce a pedigree io ancient and illustrlotta 
OucaoMs Pam. Byaantln. p. 90. AmeloC de la Houmye, Oouvernement de Venloe, torn. il. p. 555. 

(95) The pralee beeiovred on princes before their elevation, is the pumet and meet weighty. Oorippua 
haa celebrated Tiberiua at Che time of the acccarion of Juedn (L 1 9l»-499). Yet even a captain of the 
guarde might attract the flattery of an AMcan exile. 

(98) Emgrf ui (l- ▼• c. 13,) has added Uie reproach to hli mlnlrtm. He appllee thie epeeth to Um 
•Qeramony when Tiberiui waa Invested with the rank of Ceear. The looee exprcHloD. rather than tha 
poeitlve ^rror, of Theophaaci, dec haa delayed It to hie AngyuUm tnveiUture immediaiely before Um 
^eadiofJuatla. 



OF TH£ ROMAN EMPIRE. 199 

<0D j before, you were her serrant. Delie^ht not in blood : absta in from revenue ^ 
avoid those actions by which I have incurred the public hatred, and consult 
^e experience rather than the example of your predecessor. As a man, I 
have sinned ; as a sinner, even in this life, I have been severely punished ; but 
Ihese servants (and he pointed to his ministers,) who have abused my confi- 
dence, and inflamed my passions, will appear with me before the tribunal of 
Christ. I have been diazzled by the splendour of the diadem ; be thou wise 
and modest ; remember what you have been ; remember what you are. You 
fiee around us your slaves and your children : with the authority, assume the 
tenderness, of a parent Love your people like yourself: cultivate the affec- 
tions, maintain the discipline ot the s^rmy : protect the fortunes of the rich, 
lelieve the necessities of the poor."(27) The assembly, in silence and in tears, 
applauded the counsels, and sympathized with the repentance of their prince ; 
the patriarch rehearsed the prayers of the church ; Tiberius received the dia- 
dem on his knees, and Justin, who in his abdication appeared most worthy to 
reign, addressed the new monarch in the following words : ^ If you consent, I 
live : if you command, I die : may the God of heaven and earth infuse into 
your heart whatever I have neglected or forgotten." The last four years ot 
the emperor Justin were passed in tranquil obscurity : his conscience was no 
longer tormented by the remembrance of those duties which he was incapable 
of dischai^ii^ ; and his choice was justified by the filial reverence and grati- 
tude of Tiberius. 

[A. D. 578.1 Amoqg the virtues of Tiberius,^28) his beau^ (he was one ot 
:tiie tallest and^most comely of the Romans) might introduce him to the favour 
»ef Sophia ; and the widow of Justin was persuaded, that she should preserve 
<her station and influence under the reign of a second and more youthful husband. 
But if the ambitious candidate bad been tempted to flatter and dissemble, it was 
•no longer in his power to fulfil her expectations, or his own promise. The 
lactions of the hippodrome demanded, with some impatience, the name of their 
.Dew, empress; both the people and Sophia were astonished by the proclama- 
tion of Anastasia, the secret, though lawful, wife of the emperor Tiberius. 
Whatever could alleviate the disappointment of Sophia, imperial honours, a 
stately palace, a numerous household, were liberally bestowed by the piety of 
iher adopted son : on solemn occasions he attended and consulted the widow ot 
this benefactor : but her ambition disdained the vain semblance of royalty, and 
the respectful appellation of mother served to exasperate, rather than appease, 
the rage of an injured woman. While she accepted and repaid with a courtly 
smile, the fair expressions of regard and confidence, a secret alliance was con- 
cluded between toe dowager empress and her ancient enemies ; and Justinian, 
the son of Germanus, was employed as the instrument of her revenge. The 
pride of the reigning house supported with reluctance the dominion of a stran- 
ger : the youth was deservedly popular ; his name, after the death of Justin, 
lad been mentioned by a tumultuous faction ; and his own submissive offer ot 
his head, with a treasure of sixty thousand pounds, might be interpreted as an 
evidence of ffuilt^or at least of fear. Justinian received a free pardon, and th^ 
command of the eastern army. The Persian monarch fled before his arms ; 
and the acclamations which accompanied his triumph, declared him worthy of 
the purple. His artful patroness had chosen the month of the vintage^ while 
the emoeror, in a rural solitude, was permitted to enjoy the pleasures of a sub- 
ject. On the first intelligence of her designs he returned to Constantinople, and 
the conspiracy was suppressed by his presence and firmness. From the pomp 
and honours which she bad abused, Sophia was reduced to a modest allowance : 
Tiberius dismissed her tram, intercepted her correspondence, and committed 

(97) Theopbytact Slmoeatta (I. UL c. 11,) declarw that be ihall give to porterily the ipeecb V Jurtin m 
It was pronounced. wiUiout attemptlnf to correct the imperfectloiM of tauaguage or rhetoric. Perhape the 
vain lophiM would have been incapable of producing auch eenUmenla. 

(S8) For the character and reign of Tiberius, aee Evagrlaai 1. t. c 13. Theopbylact,!. ill. c. IS, Jec 
Tbeophanea, In Cbron. n. 810-813. ZonaFaa, toon. 11. L xlv. p. 7S. Cedrenua, p. 3U8. Paul Wameftfd, 
<de Geatle LangobatI, L iU. c 11, IS. The deaeoa of Foron JuUI appean toha?e poneasedaome euilMM 
^uidauUwatlcfbcta. 



i; 



900 TH£ DECLINE AND FALL 

to a faithful g;uard the custody of her person. But fh* Mrrioes of Juslinian^ 
were not considered by that excellent prince as an agfrraTation of his offences : 
after a mild reproof, his treason and ingratitude were foiigiFeD; and it wa» 
commonly beliered, that the emperor entertained some thoufffats of contracting 
a double alliance with the rival of his throne. The voice ot an angel (such a 
fable was propagated) might reveal to the emf^eror, that he should always tri- 
umph oyer bis domestic foes ; but Tiberius derived a firmer assurance from the 
innocence and generosity of his own mind. 

With the odHms name of Tiberius, he assumed the more popular appelktson 
of Constantine, and imitatetl the purer virtues of the Antonines. After record* 
ing the rice or folly of so many Roman princes, it is pleasiiig to repose, for a 
moment, on a character conspicuous by the qualities of humanity, justice, tem- 
perance, and fortitude : to contemplate a sovereign affable In his paJace, pious 
m the chureh, impartial on the seat of judgment, and victorious, at least by fais 
generals, in the Persian war. The most glorious trophy of his victonr consisted 
m a multitude of captives whom Tiberius entertained, redeemed, and dismissed 
to their native homes with the charitable spirit of a Christian hero. The merit 
or misfortunes of his own subjects bad a dearer claim to his beneficence, and he 
measured his botmty not so much by their eipectalions, as by his <mn dignity. 
This maxim, however dangerous in a trustee of the public wealth, was balanced, 
by a principle of humani^ and justice, which tau^t him to abhor, as of (he 
basest alloy, the gold that was extracted from the tears of the people. For* 
theh- relief, as often as they had suffered by natural <»■ hostile calamities, he 
was impatient to remit the arrears of the |>ast, or the demands of future taxes r 
he sternly rejected the servile offerings of bb ministers, which were compensated 
by tenfold oppression ; and the wise and equitable laws of Tiberius excited the 
praise and regret of succeeding times. Constantinople believed that the em- 
peror had discovered a treasure : but his genuine treasure consisted in the prac- 
tice of liberal economy, and the contempt of all vatn and superfluous expense.. 
The Romans of the East would have been happy, if the best gift of heaven, a 
patriot king, had been confirmed as a proper and permanent Messii^. But in* 
kss than four years after the death of Justin, his worthy successor sunk into a 
mortal disease, which left him only sufficient time to restore the diadem, accord- 
ing to the tenure by which he held it, to the most deserving^ of his feltow-citi— 
zens. He selected Maurice from the crowd, a judgment more precious than^ 
the purple itself: the patriarch and senate were summoned to the bed of the 
dying prince : he bestowed his daughter and the emphe ; and his last advice 
was solemnly delivered by the voice of the qusestor. Tiberius expressed his> 
hope, that the virtues of his son and successor would erect the noblest mauso- 
leum to his memory. His memoiy was embalmed by the public affliction ; but 
. the most sincere grief evaporates in the tumult of a new reign, and the eyes and 
acclamations of mankind were speedily directed to the rising sun. 

[A. D. 582.1 The emperor Maurice derived his origin from ancient Rome ;(S9y 
but his immediate parents were settled at Arabissus in Cappadocia, and tneir 
singular felicity preserved tbem alive to behold and partake the fortune of their 
avffttst son. The youth of Maurice was spent in the profession of arms ; Tibe- 
rius promoted him to the command of a new and favourite legion of twelve 
thousand confederates ; his valour and conduct were signal isedin the Persian 
war ; and he returned to Constantinople to accept, as his just reward, the inhe- 
ritance of the empire. Maurice ascended the^hrone at tlie mature age of forty- 
three years ; and he reigned above twenty years over the East and over him-^ 
self ;(30) expelling from his mind the wild democracy of passions, and establish- 
ing (according to the quaint expression of Evagrius) a perfect aristocracy ot 

CB) It ti therefore singalar enough that Paol (1. 111. clS,) ehottld disUnnish Mm u the flrst Oraek 
empeNn^primoi ex Gnecorum genera in Imperlo oonttltQtue. Hie immediate pradeceeeora had indeed 
be«i born in ttie Latin provincea of Europe ; and a various reading, In Onecoram Imperlo, would apply 
die erpreHlon to the empire rather than the prince. 

(90) Conault, Tor the character and reign of Manrieef the fifth and alzlh hooka of Eragriva, particn)ai1y% 
L Tt. c 1 ; the eight hooka of his prolix and florid history hy Theopbylact aimocaita. Theophanea^p^ 
AS, ice Zonaiaa, torn. ii. L itv. p. 73. Ccdrenua, p. 3D4. 



OF TH£ ROMAN £MPIRE. SOI 

leason and virtue. Some suspicion will degrade the testimony of a subject, 
though he protests that his secret praise should never reach the ear of his sove- 
ieign}(3l) and some failings seem to place the character of Maurice below the 
purer merit of his predecessor. His cold and reserved demeanour might be 
imputed to arrogance ; his justice was not always exenipt from cruelty^» nor hit 
clemency from weakness ; and his ririd economy too often exposed him to the 
reproach of avarice. But the rational wishes of an absolute monarch roust tend 
to the happiness of his people ; Maurice was endowed with seme and courage 
to promote that happiness^and his administration was directed by the principles 
ana example of Tiberius. The pusillanimity of the Greeks hacl introduced so 
complete a separation between the offices of Icing and of general, that a pnvate 
soldier who had deserved and obtained the purple, seldom or never appeared 
at the head of his armies. Yet the emperor Maurice enjoyed the glory- of 
restorin^^ the Persian monarch to liis throne : his Ketitenants waged a doubtfiil 
war against the Avars of the Danube, and he cast an eye of pity, of ineiectiial 
pi^, on the abject and distressful -^tate of his Italian provinces. 

From Italy the emperors were incessantly tormented by tales of miaary and 
demands of succour, which extorted the humiliating comeasion of their own 
weakness. The expiring dignity of Rome was only marked by the freedom 
and eneigy of her complaints : " If you are incapable," she saia, •* of deliver- 
ing us from the sword of the Lombards, save us at least from the calamity of 
famine." Tiberius foigave the reproach, and relieved the distress; a supply^ 
of corn was transported from Egypt to the Tiber; and the Roman people,. 
invoking the name, not of Camillus, but of St. Peter, repulsed the Barbanam^ 
from their walls. But the relief was accidental, the danger was perpetual and 
pressing ; and the clergy and senate, collecting the remains of their ancient 
opulence, a sum of three thousand pounds of ^Id, despatdied the patrician 
Famphronius to lay their eifts and their complamts at the foot of 4he Bysantine 
throne. The attention ofthe court, and the forces of the East, wevc diverted 
by the Persian war: but the justice of Tiberius applied the eubsidy lo the 
defence of the city: and he dismissed tbe patrician with his best advioe, either 
to bribe the Lombard chiefs, or to purchase the aid of the kings of France* 
Notwithstanding this weak invention, Italy was still afSicted, Rome was again 
besi^ed, and the suburb of Classe, only three miles from Ravenna, was piU^ 
laged and occupied by tbe troops of a simple duke of Spoleta Maurice j^ave- 
aiKlience to a second deputation of priests and senators t the duties anfcT the- 
menaces of religion were forcibly uiged in the letters of^ the Roman pontiff; 
and his nuncio, the deacon Gregory, was aKke qualified to solicit the powera 
either of heaven or of the earth. The emperor adopted with stronger eflfect, 
the measures of his predecessors : some fonnidable chiefs were persuaded 4o 
embrace the friendship of the Romans ; and one of them, a mild and faitbfid 
Barbarian, lived and died in the service ofthe exarch ; the passes of the Alps> 
were delivered to the Franks ; and the pope encouraged them to violate, vnth- 
out scruple, their oaths and engagements to the misbelievers. Childebert, the* 

Sreat grancbon of Clovis, was persuaded to invade Italy by the payment of fifty 
lousand pieces ; but as he had viewed with delight some Byzantine coin of 
the weight of one pound of gold, the king of Austrasia might stipulate, that the 
g\(i should be rendered more worthy of his acceptance, by a proper mixture of 
these respectable medals. The dukes of the U>mbards bad provoked by fre- 
quent inroads their powerful neighbours of Gaul. As soon as the^ were appre- 
hensive of a just retaliation, they renounced their feeble and disorderly inde- 
pendence : the advantage.s of re&ral government, unk)n, secrecy, and vigour 
were unanimously confessed ; and Autbaris, the son of Clepho, bad already 
attained the strength and reputation of a warrior. Under the standard of their 
new king, the conquerors of Italy withstood three successive invasions, one of 




IBM THE DECLINE AND FALL 

ivhich was led by Childebert himself, the last of the MKt>TineiaD race who 
•descended from the Alps. The first expedition was defeated by the jealous 
animosity of the Franks and Alemanni. In the second they were vanquished 
In a bloody battle, with more loss and dishonour than they had sustained since 
^e foundation of their monarchy. Impatient for revenge, they returned a * 
Tthird time with accumulated force, and Autharis yielded to the fuiy of the 
torrent. The troops and treasures of the Lombards were distributed in the 
walled towns between the Alos and the Apennine. A nation less sensible of 
^nger, than of fatigue and delay, soon murmured against the folly of their 
twenty commanders ; and the hot vapours of an Italian sun infected with dis- 
^ease tBose tramontane bodies which had already suffered the vicissitudes ot 
intemperance and famine. The powers that were inadequate to the conquest, 
were more than sufficient for the desolation of the countiy ; nor could the trem- 
l)ling natives distinguish between their enemies and their deliverers. If the 
ivnction of the Merovirw^ian and Imperial forces had been effected in the neigh- 
bourhood of Milan, perhaps they might have subverted the throne of the Lom- 
bards : but the Franks expected six days the signal of a flaming village, and 
the arms of the Greeks were idly employed in the reduction ot Modena and 
Parma, which were torn from them after the retreat of their Transalpine allies. 
The victorious Authalris asserted his claim to the dominion of Italy. At the 
foot of the Rhetian Alps, he subdued the resistance, and rifled the hidden trea- 
sures, of a sequestered island in the lake of Comum. At the extreme point of 
dalabria, he touched with his spear a column on the seashore of Rhegium,(32) 
proclaiming that ancient landmark to stand the immoveable boundaiy of his 
4ii«dom.(33) 

During a period of two hundred years, Italy was unequally divided between 
"the kingdom of the Lombards and the exarchate of Ravenna. The offices and 
professions, which the jealousy of Constantine had separated, were united bjy 
the indulgence pf Justinian : and eighteen successive exarchs were invested, in 
the decline of the empire, wfth the Tull remainsofcivil, of military, and even of 
ecclesiastical power. Their immediate jurisdiction, which was afterward con- 
secrated as the patrimony of St. Peter, extended over the modern Romaj^ 
the marshes or valleys of Ferrara and Commachio,(34) five maritime cities 
from Rimini to Ancona, and a secondjnland Pentapolis, between the Adriatic 
4K)ast and the hills of the Apennine. Three subordinate provinces, of Rome, of 
Venice, and of Naples, which were divided by hostile lands from the palace of 
-Ravenna, acknowledged, both in peace and war, the supremacy of the exaich. 
The dutchy of Rome appears to have included the Tuscan, Saoine, and Latian 
^conquests, of the first four hundred years of the city, and the limits may be dis- 
tinctly traced along the coast, from Civita Vecchia to Terracina, and with the 
^coarse of the Tiber from Ameria and Naroi to the port of Ostia. The numerous 
islands from Grado to Chiozza, composed the infant dominion of Venice ; but the 
•more accessible towns on the continent were overthrown by the Lombards, who 
•beheld with imjpotent fuiy a new capital rising from the waves. The power 
«of the dukes of Naples was circumscribed by the bay and the adjacent isles, 
Iby the hostile territoiy of Capua, and by the Roman colony of Amalphi,(35) 
whose industrious citizens, by the invention of the mariner's compass, have 
pimveiled the face of the globe. The three islands of Sardinia, Corsica, and 

(98) The Colanma RlMgina, in Uie nanowwt put of the Fsro of Menhift, one handred Madia flan 
Rbeglum haelf, la fleqaently mendoaed la ancient Geofraphy. Cluver. ItaL Andq. torn. U. p. ISH. 
Xocaa Rotateln. Annocat ad Cluver. p. 301. Weaatlnc. Itinerar. p, KM. 

(33) The Greek talatoriaiw adbcd some fkint hinta oTUie wan of Italy (Venander, In Excerpt Legal. 
;P. 194. 196. Tbeophylact. i. lii. e. 4). The Latim are more aatiafhetory ; and eqmeUlly Paol Warna- 

Md (I. ill. IS-^), who had read Uie more ancient btetoriea of Beeandin and Grevny of Toar^ Baro- 
BiaaproduceBeome letteis of the popea, 4kc; and the times aie meaaured by the accurate acale of Pagi 
and Muratori* 

(34) The papal advocates, Zacani and Fontanlnl, might Justly dalm the ▼alley or morasa of Commas' 
ehlo as a pah of the exarchate. But the ambition of incloding Modena, Begtio, Panna, and Placentia. 

• hm darkened a geographical question somewhat doubtful and obMure. Even M uratori, as the servant of 
die iMwse of Este, is not flee flom partiality and pr^udlce. 

OS) See Brenemann, Dissert ima. de Bepnbliea AmalpMtanA, p. 1— 48| ad < 
vlorent 



OF THE KOMAN EMPIRE t08 

Sicily, still adhered to the empire ; and the acquisition of (he farther Calabria 
removed the landmark of Autbaris from the shore of Rhegium to the isthmus ot 
Consentia. In Sardinia, the sarag^e mountaineers preserved the liberty and the 
religion of their ancestors ; but the husbandmen of Sicily were chained to their 
rich and cultivated soil. Rome w&s oppressed bjr the iron sceptre of the 
exarchs, and a Greek, perhaps a eunuch, insulted with impunity the ruins ot 
the Capitol. But Naples soon acquired the privile^ of eiectingf her own 
dukes ;(36) the independence of Amalphi was the fruit of commerce ; and the 
voluntary attachment of Venice was finally ennobled by an equal alliance with 
Ihe Eastern empire. On the map of Italy, the measure of