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chus now meditated the dark design of delivering up his son-in-law to the Romans. For this purpose he had desired Marius to send him a trusty person. Sylla, who was an officer of uncommon merit, and served under him as questor, was thought every way qualified for this negotiation. He was not afraid to put himself into the hands of the barbarian king ; and accordingly set out for his court. Being arrived, Bocchus, who, like the rest of his countrymen, did not pride himself on sincerity, and was for ever projecting new designs, debated within himself, whether it would not be his interest to deliver up Sylla to Jugurtha. He was a long time fluctuating in this uncertainty, and conflicting with a contrariety of sentiments: and the sudden changes which displayed themselves in his countenance, in his air, and in his whole person, showed evidently how strongly his mind was affected. At length, returning to his first design, he made his terms with Sylla, and delivered up Jugurtha into his hands, who was sent immediately to Marius.
Sylla,* says Plutarch,t acted, on this occasion, like a young man fired with a strong thirst of glory, the sweets of which he had just began to taste. Instead of ascribing to the general under whom he fought all the honour of this event, as his duty required, and which ought to be an inviolable maxim, he reserved the greater part of it to himself, and had a ring made, which he always wore, wherein he was represented receiving Jugurtha from the hands of Bocchus; and this ring he used ever after as his signet. But Marius was so highly exasperated at this kind of insult, that he could never forgive him; and this circumstance gave rise to the implacable hatred between these two Romans, which afterwards broke out with so much fury, and cost the republic so much blood.
Marius entered Rome in triumph, exhibiting such a
spectacle to the Romans, as they could scarce believe Ant. J. C. 103. they saw, when it passed before their eyes; I mean Jugurtha in chains: that so formidable an enemy, during whose life they had not dared to flatter themselves with the hopes of being able to put an end to this war; so well was his courage sustained by stratagem and artifice, and his genius so fruitful in finding new expedients, even when his affairs were most desperate. We are told that Jugurtha ran distracted, as he was walking in the triumph; that after the ceremony was ended, he was thrown into prison; and that the lictors were so eager to seize his robe, that they rent it in several pieces. and tore away the tips of his ears, to get the rich jewels with which they were adorned. In this condition he was cast, quite naked, and in the utmost terror, into a deep dungeon, where he spent six days in struggling with hunger and the fear of death, retaining a strong desire of life to his last gasp; an end, continues Plu.
A. M. 3901,
I Plut. in vit. Marij.
οία νέος φιλότιμος άρτι δόξης γέγευμένος, ουκ ήνεγκι μετρίως το ντύ Хва. Plut. Præcep reip. gerend. p. 806. Plut. ibid
A. M. 3959.
tarch, worthy of his wicked deeds, Jugurtha having been always of opinion, that the greatest crimes might be committed to satiate his ambition; ingratitude, perfidy, black treachery, and inhuman bar barity.
Juba, king of Mauritania, reflected so much honour on polite literature and sciences, that I could not, without impropriety, omit him in the history of the family of Masinissa, to whom his father, who also was named Juba, was great-grandson, and grandson of Gulussa. The elder Juba signalized himself in the war between Cæsar and Pompey, by his inviolable attachment to the party of the latter. He
slew himself after the battle of Thapsus, in which bis A. Rom. 703. forces and those of Scipio were entirely defeated. Juba, his son, then a child, was delivered up to the conqueror, and was one of the most conspicuous ornaments of his triumph. It appears from history, that a noble education was bestowed upon Juba in Rome, where he imbibed such a variety of knowledge as afterwards equalled him to the most learned among the Grecians. He did not leave that city till he went to take possession of his father's dominions.
Augustus restored them to him, when, by the death of
Mark Antony, the provinces of the empire were absoAnt. J. C. 30. lutely at his disposal. Juba, by the lenity of his
government, gained the hearts of all his subjects: who, out of a grateful sense of the felicity they had enjoyed during his reign, ranked him in the number of their gods. Pausanias speaks of a statue which the Athenians erected in his honour. It was indeed just, that a city, which had been consecrated in all ages to the Muses, should give public testimonies of its esteem for a king who made so brignt a figure among the learned. Suidas ascribes several works to this prince, of which only the fragments are now extant.* He had written the history of Arabia ; the antiquities of Assyria, and those of the Romans; the history of theatres, of painting and painters; of the nature and properties of different animals, of grammar, and similar subjects; a catalogue of all which is given in Abbé Sevin's short dissertation on the life and works of the younger Juba,t whence I have extracted these few particulars.
A. M 397
* In voce "Iósas. • Vol. iv. of the Memoins of the Academy of Belles Lettre, p. 457
THE Assyrian empire was undoubtedly one of the most powerfui in the world. With respect to its duration, two opinions have chiefly prevailed. Some authors, as Ctesias, whose opinion is followed by Justin, gave it a duration of 1300 years: others reduce it to 520, of which number is Herodotus. The diminution, or probably the interruption of power, which happened in this vast empire might possibly give occasion to this difference of opinions, and may perhaps serve in some measure to reconcile them.
The history of those early times is so obscure, the monuments which convey it down to us so contrary to each other, and the systems of the moderns upon that matter so different,* that it is difficult to lay down any opinion about it, as certain and incontestible. But where certainty is not to be had, I suppose a reasonable person will be satisfied with probability; and, in my opinion, a man can hardly be deceived, if he makes the Assyrian empire equal in antiquity with the city of Babylon, its capital. Now we learn from the Holy Scripture, that this was built by Nimrod, who certainly was a great conqueror, and in all probability the first and most ancient of all those who have ever aspired after that denomination.
The Babylonians, t as Callisthenes, a philosopher in Alexander's retinue, wrote to Aristotle, reckoned themselves at least to be 1903
They that are curlous to make deeper researches into this matter, may read the dissertations of Abbé Banier and M. Freret upon the Assyrian empire, in the Memoirs of the Academy of Belles Lettres; for the first, see Tome 3, and for the other, Tome 5; as also what Father Tournemine has written upon this subject in his edition of Menochius.
+ Porphyr, apud Simplic. in lib. ii. de cælo.
A. M. 1800.
years' standing when that Prince entered triumphant into Babylon; which makes their origin reach back to the year of the world 1771, that is to say, 115 years after the deluge. This computation comes within a few years of the time in which we suppose Nimrod to have founded that city. Indeed, this testimony of Callisthenes, as it does not agree with any other accounts of that matter, is not esteemed authentic by the learned; but the conformity we find between it and the Holy Scriptures should make us regard it. Upon these grounds, I think we may allow Nimrod to have been the founder of the first Assyrian empire, which subsisted with more or less extent and glory upwards of 1450 years,* from the time of Nimrod to that of Sardanapalus, the last king, that is to say, from the year of the world 1800 to the year 3257.
NIMROD. He is the same with Belus,t who was afAnt. J. C. 2204. terwards worshipped as a god under that appellation.
He was the son of Chus, grandson of Ham, and great-grandson of Noah. He was, says the Scripture, a mighty hunter before the Lord. In applying himself to this laborious and dangerous exercise, he had two things in view; the first was, to gain the people's affection by delivering them from the fury and dread of wild beasts; the next was, to train up numbers of young people, by this exercise of hunting, to endure labour and hardship, to form them to the use of arms, to inure them to a kind of discipline and obedience, that at a proper time, after they had been accustomed to his orders and seasoned in arms, he might make use of them for other purposes more serious than hunting.
In ancient history we find some footsteps remaining of this artifice of Nimrod, whom the writers have confounded with Ninus, his son: for Diodorus has these words :| Ninus, the most ancient of the Assyrian kings mentioned in history, performed great actions. Being naturally of a warlike disposition, and ambitious of the glory that results from valour, he armed a considerable number of young men, that were brave and vigorous like himself; trained them up a long time in laborious exercises and hardships, and by that means accustomed them to bear the fatigues of war patiently, and to face dangers with courage and intrepidity.
What the same author adds,ll that Ninus entered into an alliance with the king of the Arabs, and joined forces with him, is a piece of ancient tradition, which informs us, that the sons of Chus, and by consequence the brothers of Nimrod, all settled themselves in Arabia, along the Persian gulf, from Havilah to the Ocean; and lived near enough to their brother to lend him succours, or to receive them from him. And what the same historian farther says of Ninus, that he was the first king of the Assyrians, agrees exactly with what the Scripture says of Nimrod, that he began to be mighty upon the earth, that is, he procured himself settlements, built cities, subdued his neighbours, united different people under one and the same authority, by the band of the same polity and the same laws, and formed them into one state; which, for these early times, was of a considerable extent, though bounded by the rivers Euphrates and Tigris; and which, in succeeding ages, made new acquisitions by degrees, and at length extended its conquests very far.
* Here I depart from the opinion of Archbishop Usher, my ordinary guide, with respect to the duration of the Assyrian empire, which he supposes, with Herodotus, to have lasted but 520 years; but the time when Nimrod lived, and Sardanapalus died, I take from him.
| Belus or Baal signifies Lord. Gen. x. 9. Lib. ii. p. 90.
The capital city of his kingdom, says the Scripture, was Babylon.* Most of the profane historians ascribe the founding of Babylon to Semiramis,t others to Belus. It is evident, that both the one and the other are mistaken, if they speak of the first founder of that city; for it owes its beginning neither to Semiramis nor to Nimrod, but to the foolish vanity of those persons mentioned in Scripture, who desired to build a tower and a city, that should render their memory immortal.
Josephus relates, upon the testimony of a Sibyl, (who must : have been very ancient, and whose fictions cannot be imputed to the indiscreet zeal of any Christians,) that the gods threw down the tower by an impetuous wind, or a violent hurricane. Had this been the case, Nimrod's temerity must have been still greater, to rebuild a city and a tower which God himself had overthrown with such marks of his displeasure. But the Scripture says no such thing; and it is very probable, the building remained in the condition it was, when God put an end to the work by the confusion of languages; and that the tower consecrated to Belus, which is described by Herodotus,|| was this very tower, which the sons of men pretended to raise to the clouds.
It is farther probable, that this ridiculous design having been defeated by such an astonishing prodigy, as none could be the author of but God himself, every body abandoned the place, which had given Him offence; and that Nimrod was the first who encompassed it afterwards with walls, settled therein his friends and confederates, and subdued those that lived round about it, beginning his empire in that place, but not confining it to so narrow a compass: Fuit principium regni ejus Babylon. The other cities which the Scripture speaks of in the same place, were in the land of Shinar, which was certainly the province of which Babylon became the metropolis.
From this country he went into that which has the name of Assyria, and there built Nineveh; De terrâ illâ egressus est Assur, et ædificavit Nineveh. I. This is the sense in which many learned men understand the word Assur, looking upon it as the name of a province, and not of the first man who possessed it; as if it were, egres.
* Gen, x. 10.
Semiramis eam condiderat, vel, ut plerique tradidere, Belus, cujus regia ostenditur Q. Curt. lib. v. c. 1.
Gen. xi 4 Hist. Jud. I. I. C. 4 || Lib. I. c. 181. I Gen. x. 11