It is, perhaps, not too much to say that the history of the ancient world, both Greek and Roman, has only in our own time begun to be understood and to be duly appre- ciated. Thus it happened that the latter grained at the outset an important advantage which considerably influenced the whole course of the war. 45) relates this in the wrong place, assigning it to the THE SOCIAL WAK. BOOK As soon as the enemies had knowledge of this, they caused a ^ir* S n f Jugurtha ' named Oxyntas, who had fallen into their the Jight hands in Venusia, to show himself to these troops, attired in of Oxyntas, the full ornaments of a Numidian king. was that the Numidians deserted in crowds to put them- selves under the orders of the son of their late idolized sove- reign as their natural and legitimate chief.
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In itself credulity is as dangerous as scep- ticism to historical truth. which supplied magistrates and senators, and was re- garded by the great mass of the people as the chief support of the existing institutions. All hopes of a peaceful arrange- ment were at last dashed to the ground by a sudden outbreak of brute violence. Memmius was attacked by the Marians on the day of the election and beaten to 1 In the year 111 B. tionsby Gracchus when he made them the supreme judges in the state, that they did not scruple to abuse their judicial functions as a means for enriching themselves at the ex- pense of the provinces, and for securing impunity to their associates in plundering and cheating the subjects of Rome. This was done, no doubt without much preliminary discussion and in the readiest way, each allied state acting independently, arming the fighting men and placing the contingent under officers designated as com- petent by the general confidence. The leaders mentioned were the Marsian Quintus Pompsedius Silo and the Samnite Cams Papius Mutilus.
To believe everything because it is put down by an ancient writer, whatever may be its absurdity, or however irreconcilable it may be with physical or moral laws, however contradictory to other statements of the same or other writers, is as btid as to reject statements unless they are attested by evidence sufficient to convince a jury in a criminal trial. We have already seen how the nobility succeeded in delaying the execution of the agrarian laws of the Gracchi, then in modifying them in their own interest, and finally in putting them aside altogether. 1 There were some among the nobility who desired to put an end to these evils, which grew more and more unendurable. These two were acknowledged as commanders-in-chief, or as the consuls of the new league.
Thus the number of questions to which we cannot give an answer is deplorably great, and we have, moreover, the uneasy feeling that much of what is accepted as true and unimpeachable only appears so because we happen to vi PEEFACE. All the attempts that were made were partial, paltry, and so feeble that the proposed measures were either not carried or soon again set aside. These were supposed to belong to the lex Servilia ; but it is most probable that they are parts of a lex Acilia, twice quoted by Cicero (in Verr. By the constitution Glaucia was disqualified because he still held the office of prsetor. THE man who attempted the great and noble task of deal- ing with the internal diseases of the republic was the youthful tribune of the year 91 B. In that case the insufficiency of the new organization is still more apparent, and the radical faults connected with the legislative assemblies at Rome would have been repeated 011 a magnified scale.
have no independent contradictory statements, and arc- therefore not entitled to reject reports, though they may seem from internal evidence to be open to the most serious doubts. A gradual reform in detail would not in itself have been hopeless. 132, is of opinion that the rogation of Servi- lius Csepio was not. But the way in which it is mentioned allows of no doubt that it became law. ] was long the general opinion that remnants of this Servilian law had been preserved. But constitutional scruples did not disconcert men of -his stamp. Both parties were already accustomed to employ force to carry an important measure, and mustered their supporters for a de- cisive combat. C., Marcus Livius Drusus, son of that Livius Drusus who, as tribune in 122 B. Gracchus by his agrarian proposals, for the purpose of undermining the popularity of the reformer. In Rome itself there was at least a vast population containing a considerable proportion of the total of Roman citizens; and great numbers of those who were settled in the country, tribes even at great distances from the capital, were from time to time drawn to Rome by business or pleasure, so that the assemblies in the Forum or the Campus Martius might to some extent be looked upon as a fair representation of the people.
The general tendency of writers has been to exalt yiii PREFACE. I profess myself to be one, and I have given ample proof in many parts of my work that I have the highest respect for Roman patriotism, firmness, courage, earnestness, self-devotion, perseverance, prudence, for Roman dignity and manliness, in fact for all the virtues which may be called specifically Roman. With wonderful unanimity and resolution the con- Attack of federates began the war. This place was bravely defended when it was attacked by the insurgents ; nor were the defenders intimidated even when the besiegers put to death before the eyes of their parents a number of children, probably hostages in their possession.