The Seven Books of Arnobius Against the Heathen. Book 7. (Cont.)

26. We have now to say a few words about incense and wine, for these, too, are connected and mixed up with your ceremonies,129 and are used largely in your religious acts. And, first, with respect to that very incense which you use, we ask this of you particularly, whence or at what thee you have been able to become acquainted with it, and to know it, so that you have just reason to think that it is either worthy to be given to the gods, or most agreeable to their desires. For it is almost a novelty; and there is no endless succession of years since it began to be known in these parts, and won its way into the shrines of the gods. For neither in the heroic ages, as it is believed and declared, was it known what incense was, as is proved by the ancient writers, in whose books is found no mention130 of it; nor was Etruria, the parent and mother of superstition, acquainted with its fame and renown, as the rites of the chapels prove; nor was it used by any one in offering sacrifice during the four hundred years in which Alba flourished; nor did even Romulus or Numa, who was skilful in devising new ceremonies, know either of its existence or growth, as the sacred grits131 show with which it was customary that the usual sacrifices should be performed. Whence, therefore, did its use begin to be adopted? or what desire of novelty assailed the old and ancient custom, so that that which was not needed for so many ages took the first place in the ceremonies? For if without incense the performance of a religious service is imperfect, and if a quantity of it is necessary to make the celestials gentle and propitious to men, the ancients fell into sin, nay rather, their whole life was full of guilt, for they carelessly neglected to offer that which was most fitted to give pleasure to the gods. But if in ancient times neither men nor gods sought for this incense, it is proved that to-day also that is offered uselessly and in vain which antiquity did not believe necessary, but modern times desired without any reason.132


27. Finally, that we may always abide by the rule and definition by which it has been shown and determined that whatever is done by man must have its causes, we will hold it fast here also, so as to demand of you what is the cause, what the reason, that incense is put on the altars before the very images of the deities, and that, from its being burned, they are supposed to become friendly and gentle. What do they acquire from this being done, or what reaches their minds, so that we should be right in judging that these things are well expended, and are not consumed uselessly and in vain? For as you should show why you give incense to the gods, so, too, it follows that you should manifest that the gods have some reason for not rejecting it with disdain, nay more, for desiring it so fondly. We honour the gods with this, some one will perhaps say. But we are not inquiring what your feeling is, but the gods’; nor do we ask what is done by you, but how much they value what is done to purchase their favour. But yet, O piety, what or how great is this honour which is caused by the odour of a fire, and produced from the gum of a tree? For, lest you should happen not to know what this incense is, or what is its origin, it is a gum flowing from the bark of trees, just as from the almond-tree, the cherry-tree, solidifying as it exudes in drops. Does this, then, honour and magnify the celestial dignities? or, if their displeasure has been at any thee excited, is it melted away before the smoke of incense, and lulled to sleep, their anger being moderated? Why, then, do you not burn indiscriminately the juice of any tree whatever, without making any distinction? For if the deities are honoured by this, and are not displeased that Panchaean gums are burned to them, what does it matter from what the smoke proceeds on your sacred altars, or from what kind of gum the clouds of fumigation arise?


28. Will any one say that incense is given to the celestials, for this reason, that it has a sweet smell, and imparts a pleasant sensation to the nose, while the rest are disagreeable, and have been set aside because of their offensiveness? Do the gods, then, have nostrils with which to breathe? do they inhale and respire currents of air so that the qualities of different smells can penetrate them? But if we allow that this is the case, we make them subject to the conditions of humanity, and shut them out from the limits of deity; for whatever breathes and draws in draughts of air, to be sent back in the same way, must be mortal, because it is sustained by feeding on the atmosphere. But whatever is sustained by feeding on the atmosphere, if you take away the means by which communication is kept up,133 its life must be crushed out, and its vital principle must be destroyed and lost. So then, if the gods also breathe and inhale odours enwrapt in the air that accompanies them, it is not untrue to say that they live upon what is received from others,134 and that they might perish if their air-holes were blocked up. And whence, lastly, do you know whether, if they are charmed by the sweetness of smells, the same things are pleasant to them which are pleasant to you, and charm and affect your different natures with a similar feeling? May it not be possible that the things which give pleasure to you, seem, on the contrary, harsh and disagreeable to them? For since the opinions of the gods are not the same, and their substance not one, by what methods can it be brought about that that which is unlike in quality should have the same feeling and perception as to that which touches it.135 Do we not every day see that, even among the creatures sprung from the earth, the same things are either bitter or sweet to different species, that to some things are fatal which are not pernicious to others, so that the same things which charm some with their delightful odours, give forth exhalations deadly to the bodies of others? But the cause of this is not in the things which cannot be at one and the same thee deadly and wholesome, sweet and bitter; but just as each one has been formed to receive impressions from what is external,136 so he is affected:137 his condition is not caused by the influences of the things, but springs from the nature of his own senses, and connection with the external. But all this is set far from the gods, and is separated from them by no small interval. For if it is true, as is believed by the wise, that they are incorporeal, and not supported by any excellence of bodily strength, an odour is of no effect upon them, nor can reeking fumes move them by their senses, not even if you were to set on fire a thousand pounds of the finest incense, and the whole sky were clouded with the darkness of the abundant vapours. For that which does not have bodily strength and corporeal substance, cannot be touched by corporeal substance; but an odour is corporeal, as is shown by the nose when touched by one: therefore it cannot, according to reason, be felt by a deity, who has no body, and is without any feeling and thought.138


29. Wine is used along with incense; and of this, in like manner, we ask an explanation why it is poured upon it when burning. For if a reason is not139 shown for doing this, and its cause is not140 set forth, this action of yours must not now be attributed to a ridiculous error, but, to speak more plainly, to madness, foolishness, blindness. For, as has been already said pretty frequently, everything which is done should have its cause manifest, and not involved in any dark obscurity. If, therefore, you have confidence in what is done, disclose, point out why that liquor is offered; that is, why wine is poured on the altars. For do the bodies of the deities feel parching thirst, and is it necessary that their dryness be tempered by some moisture? Are they accustomed, as men are, to combine eating and drinking? In like manner, also, after the solid141 food of cakes and pottages, and victims slain in honour of them, do they drench themselves, and make themselves merry with very frequent cups of wine, that their food may be more easily softened, and thoroughly digested? Give, I beg, to the immortal gods to drink; bring forth goblets, bowls,142 ladles, and cups; and as they stuff themselves with bulls, and luxurious feasts, and rich food, — lest some piece of flesh hastily143 gulped down should stick in passing through the stomach, run up, hasten, give pure wine to Jupiter, the most excellent, the supreme, lest he be choked. He desires to break wind, and is unable; and unless that hindrance passes away and is dissolved, there is very great danger that his breathing will be stopped and144 interrupted, and heaven be left desolate without its rulers.


30. But, says my opponent, you are insulting us without reason, for we do not pour forth wine to the gods of heaven for these reasons, as if we supposed that they either thirsted, or drank, or were made glad by tasting its sweetness. It is given to them to do them honour; that their eminence may become more exalted, more illustrious, we pour libations on their altars, and with the half-extinguished embers we raise sweet smells,145 which show our reverence. And what greater insult can be inflicted upon the gods than if you believe that they become propitious on receiving wine, or, if you suppose that great honour is done to them, if you only throw and drop on the live coals a few drops of wine? We are not speaking to men void of reason, or not possessed of common understanding: in you, too, there is wisdom, there is perception, and in your hearts you know, by your own146 judgment, that we are speaking truly. But what can we do with those who are utterly unwilling to consider things as they are, to converse themselves with themselves? For you do what you see to be done, not that which you are assured should be done, inasmuch147 as with you a custom without reason prevails, more than a perception of the nature of circumstances based on a careful examination of the truth. For what has a god to do with wine? or what or how great is the power in it, that, on its being poured out, his eminence becomes greater, and his dignity is supposed to be honoured? What, I say, has a god to do with wine, which is most closely connected with the pursuits of Venus, which weakens the strength of all virtues, and is hostile to the decency of modesty and chastity, — which has often excited men’s minds, and urged them to madness and frenzy, and compelled the gods to destroy their own authority by raving and foul language? Is not this, then, impious, and perfectly sacrilegious, to give that as an honour which, if you take too eagerly, you know not what you are doing, you are ignorant of what you are saying, and at last are reviled, and become infamous as a drunkard, a luxurious and abandoned fellow?


31. It is worth while to bring forward the words themselves also, which, when wine is offered, it is customary to use and make supplication with: “Let the deity be worshipped with this wine which we bring.”148 The words “which we bring,” says Trebatius, are added for this purpose, and put forth for this reason, that all the wine whatever which has been laid up in closets and storerooms, from which was taken that which is poured out, may not begin to be sacred, and be reft from the use of men. This word, then, being added, that alone will be sacred which is brought to the place, and the rest will not be consecrated.149 What kind of honour, then, is this, in which there is imposed on the deity a condition,150 as it were, not to ask more than has been given? or what is the greed of the god, who, if he were not verbally interdicted, would extend his desires too far, and rob his suppliant of his stores? “Let the deity be worshipped with this wine which we bring:” this is a wrong, not an honour. For what if the deity shall wish for more, and shall not be content with what is brought! Must he not be said to be signally wronged who is compelled to receive honour conditionally? For if all wine in cellars whatever must become consecrated were a limitation not added, it is manifest both that the god is insulted to whom a limit is prescribed against his wishes, and that in sacrificing you yourselves violate the obligations of the sacred rites, who do not give as much wine as you see the god wishes to be given to himself. “Let the deity be worshipped with this wine which we bring:” what is this but saying, “Be worshipped as much as I choose; receive as much dignity as I prescribe, as much honour as I decide and determine by a strict engagement151 that you should bare?” O sublimity of the gods, excelling in power, which thou shouldst venerate and worship with all ceremonial observances, but on which the worshipper imposes conditions, which he adores with stipulations and contracts, which, through fear of one word, is kept from excessive desire of wine!


32. But let there be, as you wish, honour in wine and in incense, let the auger and displeasure of the deities be appeased by the immolation and slaughter of victims: are the gods moved by garlands also, wreaths and flowers, by the jingling of brass also, and the shaking of cymbals, by timbrels also, and also by symphonious pipes?152 What effect has the clattering of castanets, that when the deities have heard them, they think that honour has been shown to them, and lay aside their fiery spirit of resentment in forgetfulness? Or, as little boys are frightened into giving over their silly wailings by hearing the sound of rattles, are the almighty deities also soothed in the same way by the whistling of pipes? and do they become mild, is their indignation softened, at the musical sound of cymbals? What is the meaning of those calls153 which you sing in the morning, joining your voices to the music of the pipe? Do the gods of heaven fall asleep, so that they should return to their posts? What is the meaning of those slumbers153 to which you commend them with auspicious salutations that they may be in good health? Are they awakened from sleep; and that they may be able to be overcome by it, must soothing lullabies be heard? The purification, says my opponent, of the mother of the gods is to-day.154 Do the gods, then, become dirty; and to get rid of the filth, do those who wash them need water, and even some cinders to rub them with?155 The feast of Jupiter is to-morrow. Jupiter, I suppose, dines, and must be satiated with great banquets, and long filled with eager cravings for food by fasting, and hungry after the usual156 interval. The vintage festival of Aesculapius is being celebrated. The gods, then, cultivate vineyards, and, having collected gatherers, press the wine for their own uses.157 The lectisternium of Ceres158 will be on the next Ides, for the gods have couches; and that they may be able to lie on softer cushions, the pillows are shaken up when they have been pressed down.159 It is the birthday of Tellus;160 for the gods are born, and have festal days on which it has been settled that they began to breathe.


33. But the games which you celebrate, called Floralia and Megalensia,161 and all the rest which you wish to be sacred, and to be considered religious duties, what reason have they, what cause, that it was necessary that they should be instituted and founded and designated by the names162 of deities? The gods are honoured by these, says my opponent; and if they have any recollection of offences committed163 by men, they lay it aside, get rid of it, and show themselves gracious to us again, their friendship being renewed. And what is the cause, again, that they are made quite calm and gentle, if absurd things are done, and idle fellows sport before the eyes of the multitude? Does Jupiter lay aside his resentment if the Amphitryon of Plautus is acted and declaimed? or if Europa, Leda, Ganymede, or Danae is represented by dancing does he restrain his passionate impulses? Is the Great Mother rendered more calm, more gentle, if she beholds the old story of Attis furbished up by the players? Will Venus forget her displeasure if she sees mimics act the part of Adonis also in a ballet?164 Does the anger of Aleides die away if the tragedy of Sophocles named Trachiniae, or the Hercules of Euripides, is acted? or does Flora think165 that honour is shown to her if at her games she sees that shameful actions are done, and the stews abandoned for the theatres? Is not this, then, to lessen the dignity of the gods, to dedicate and consecrate to them the basest things which a rigidly virtuous mind will turn from with disgust, the performers of which your law has decided to be dishonoured and to be considered infamous? The gods, forsooth, delight in mimics; and that surpassing excellence which has not been comprehended by any bureau faculty, opens166 its ears most willingly to hear these plays, with most of which they know they are mixed up to be turned to derision; they are delighted, as it is, with the shaved heads of the fools, by the sound of flaps, and by the noise of applause, by shameful actions and words, by huge red fascina. But further, if they see men weakening themselves to the effeminacy of women, some vociferating uselessly, others running about without cause,167 others, while their friendship is unbroken, bruising and maiming each with the bloody cestus, these contending in speaking without drawing breath,168 swelling out their cheeks with wind, and shouting out noisily empty vows, do they lift up their hands to heaven in their admiration, start up moved by such wonders, burst into exclamations, again become gracious to men? If these things cause the gods to forget their resentment, if they derive the highest pleasure from comedies, Atellane farces, and pantomimes, why do you delay, why do you hesitate, to say that the gods themselves also play, act lasciviously, dance, compose obscene songs, and undulate with trembling haunches? For what difference is there, or what does it matter, whether they do these things themselves, or are pleased and delighted to see them done by others?


34. Whence, therefore, have these vicious opinions flowed, or from what causes have they sprung? From this it is clear, in great measure, that men are unable to know what God is, what is His essence, nature, substance, quality; whether He has a form, or is limited by no bodily outline, does anything or not, is ever watchful, or is at times sunk in slumbers, runs, sits, walks, or is free from such motions and inactivity. Being, as I have said, unable to know all these things, or to discern them by any power of reason, they fell into these fanciful beliefs, so that they fashioned gods after themselves, and gave to these such a nature as they have themselves, in actions, circumstances, and desires. But if they were to perceive that they are worthless creatures,169 and that there is no great difference between themselves and a little ant, they would cease, indeed, to think that they have anything in common with the gods of heaven, and would confine their unassuming insignificance170 within its proper limits. But now, because they see that they themselves have faces, eyes, heads, cheeks, ears, noses, and all the other parts of our limbs and muscles, they think that the gods also have been formed in the same way, that the divine nature is embodied in a human frame;171 and because they perceive that they themselves rejoice and are glad, and again are made sad by what is too disagreeable, they think that the deities also on joyous occasions are glad, and on less pleasant ones become dejected. They see that they are affected by the games, and think that the minds of the celestials are soothed by enjoying games; and because they have pleasure in refreshing themselves with warm baths, they think that the cleanness produced by172 bathing is pleasing to the gods above. We men gather our vintages, and they think and believe that the gods gather and bring in their grapes; we have birthdays, and they affirm that the powers of heaven have birthdays.173 But if they could ascribe to the gods ill-health, sickness, and bodily disease, they would not hesitate to say that they were splenetic, blear-eyed, and ruptured, because they are themselves both splenetic, and often blear-eyed, and weighed down by huge herniae.


35. Come now: as the discussion has been prolonged and led to these points, let us, bringing forward what each has to say,174 decide by a brief comparison whether your ideas of the gods above are the better, or our thoughts preferable, and much more honourable and just, and such as to give and assign its own dignity to the divine nature. And, first, you declare that the gods, whom you either think or believe to exist, of whom you have set up images and statues in all the temples, were born and produced from the germs of males and females, under the necessary condition of sexual embraces. But we, on the contrary, if they are indeed true gods, and have the authority, power, dignity of this name, consider that they must either be unbegotten, for it is pious to believe this, or, if they have a beginning in175 birth, it belongs to the supreme God to know by what methods He made them, or how many ages there are since He granted to them to enter upon the eternal being of His own divine nature. You consider that the deities have sexes, and that some of them are male, others female; we utterly deny that the powers of heaven have been distinguished by sexes, since this distinction has been given to the creatures of earth which the Author of the universe willed should embrace and generate, to provide, by their carnal desires, one generation of offspring after another. You think that they are like men, and have been fashioned with the countenances of mortals; we think that the images of them are wide of the mark,176 as form belongs to a mortal body; and if they have any, we swear with the utmost earnestness and confidence that no man can comprehend it. By you they are said to have each his trade, like artisans; we laugh when we hear you say such things, as we hold and think that professions are not necessary to gods, and it is certain and evident that these have been provided to assist poverty.


36.177 You say that some of them cause dissensions, that there are others who inflict pestilences, others who excite love and madness, others, even, who preside over wars, and are delighted by the shedding of blood; but we, indeed, on the contrary, judge that these things are remote178 from the dispositions of the deities; or if there are any who inflict and bring these ills on miserable mortals, we maintain that they are far from the nature of the gods, and should not be spoken of under this name. You judge that the deities are angry and perturbed, and given over and subject to the other mental affections; we think that such emotions are alien from them, for these suit savage beings, and those who die as mortals.179 You think that they rejoice, are made glad, and are reconciled to men, their offended feelings being soothed by the blood of beasts and the slaughter of victims; we hold that there is in the celestials no love of blood, and that they are not so stern as to lay aside their resentment only when glutted with the slaughter of animals. You think that, by wine and incense, honour is given to the gods, and their dignity increased; we judge it marvellous and monstrous that any man thinks that the deity either becomes more venerable by reason of smoke,180 or thinks himself supplicated by men with sufficient awe and respect when they offer181 a few drops of wine. You are persuaded that, by the crash of cymbals and the sound of pipes, by horse-races and theatrical plays, the gods are both delighted and affected, and that their resentful feelings conceived before182 are mollified by the satisfaction which these things give; we hold it to be out of place, nay more, we judge it incredible, that those who have surpassed by a thousand degrees every kind of excellence in the height of their perfection, should be pleased and delighted with those things which a wise man laughs at, and which do not seem to have any charm except to little children, coarsely and vulgarly educated.


37. Since these things are so, and since there is so great difference between181 our opinions and yours, where are we, on the one hand, impious, or you pious, since the decision as to181 piety and impiety must be founded on the opinions of the two parties? For he who makes himself an image which he may worship for a god, or slaughters an innocent beast, and burns it on consecrated altars, must not be held to be devoted to religion.183 Opinion constitutes religion, and a right way of thinking about the gods, so that you do not think that they desire anything contrary to what becomes their exalted position, which is manifest.184 For since we see all the things which are offered to them consumed here under our eyes, what else can be said to reach them from us than opinions worthy of the gods, and most appropriate to their name? These are the surest gifts, these true sacrifices; for gruel, incense, and flesh feed the devouring flames, and agree very well with the parentalia185 of the dead.


38.186 If the immortal gods cannot be angry, says my opponent, and their nature is not agitated or troubled by any passions, what do the histories, the annals mean, in which we find it written187 that the gods, moved by some annoyances, occasioned pestilences, sterility,188 failure of crops, and other dangers, to states and nations; and that they again, being appeased and satisfied by means of189 sacrifices, laid aside their burning anger, and changed the state of the atmosphere and times into a happier one? What is the meaning of the earth’s roarings, the earthquakes, which we have been told occurred because the games had been celebrated carelessly, and their nature and circumstances had not been attended to, and yet, on their being celebrated afresh, and repeated with assiduous care, the terrors of the gods were stilled, and they were recalled to care and friendship for men? How often, after that — in obedience to the commands of the seers and the responses of the diviners — sacrifice has been offered, and certain gods have been summoned from nations dwelling beyond the sea, and shrines erected to them, and certain images and statues set on loftier pillars, have fears of impending dangers been diverted, and the most troublesome enemies beaten, and the republic extended both by repeated joyous victories. and by gaining possession of several provinces! Now, certainly this would not happen if the gods despised sacrifices, games, and other acts of worship, and did not consider themselves honoured by expiratory offerings. If, then, all the rage and indignation of the deities are cooled when these things are offered, and if those things become favourable which seemed fraught with terrors, it is clear that all these things are not done without the gods wishing them, and that it is vain, and shows utter ignorance, to blame us for giving them.


39.190 We have come, then, in speaking, to the very point of the case, to that on which the question hinges, to the real and most intimate part of the discussion, which it is fitting that, laying aside superstitious dread, and putting away partiality, we should examine whether these are or whether they are something far different, and should be separated from the notion of this name and power. For we do not deny that all these things are to be found in the writings of the annalists which have been brought forward by you in opposition; for we ourselves also, according to the measure and capacity of our abilities, have read, and know, that it has been recorded that once at the ludi circenses, celebrated in honour of Jupiter the supreme, a master dragged across the middle of the arena, and afterwards, according to custom, punished with the cross, a very worthless slave whom he had beaten with rods. Then, when the games were ended, and the races not long finished, a pestilence began to distress the state; and when each day brought fresh ill worse than what was before,191 and the people were perishing in crowds, in a dream Jupiter said to a certain rustic, obscure from the lowliness of his lot, that he should go192 to the consuls, point out that the dancer193 had displeased him, that it might be better for the state if the respect due to the games were paid to them, and they were again celebrated afresh with assiduous care. And when he had utterly neglected to do this, either because he supposed it was an empty dream, and would find no credence with those to whom he should tell it, or because, remembering his natural insignificance, he avoided and dreaded approaching those who were so powerful,194 Jupiter was rendered hostile to the lingerer, and imposed as punishment on him the death of his sons. Afterwards, when he195 threatened the man himself with death unless he went to announce his disapproval of the dancer, — overcome by fear of dying, since he was already himself also burning with the fever of the plague, having been infected, he was carried to the senate-house, as his neighbours wished, and, when his vision had been declared, the contagious fever passed away. The repetition of the games being then decreed, great care was, on the one hand, given to the shows, and its former good health was restored to the people.


40.196 But neither shall we deny that we know this as well, that once on a time, when the state and republic were in difficulties, caused either by197 a terrible plague continually infecting the people and carrying them off, or by enemies powerful, and at that time almost threatening to rob it of its liberty198 because of their success in: battle, — by order and advice of the seers, certain gods199 were summoned from among nations dwelling beyond the sea, and honoured with magnificent temples; and that the violence of the plague abated, and very frequent triumphs were gained, the power of the enemy being broken, and the territory of the empire was increased, and provinces without number fell under your sway. But neither does this escape our knowledge, that we have seen it asserted that, when the Capitol was struck by a thunderbolt, and many other things in it, the image of Jupiter also, which stood on a lofty pillar, was hurled from its place. Thereafter a response was given by the soothsayers, that cruel and very sad mischances were portended from fire and slaughter, from the destruction of the laws, and the overthrow of justice, especially, however, from enemies themselves belonging to the nation, and from an impious band of conspirators; but that these things could not be averted, nay, that the accursed designs could not be revealed, unless Jupiter were again set up firmly on a higher pillar, turned towards the east, and facing the rays of the rising sun. Their words were trustworthy, for, when the pillar was raised, and the statue turned towards the sun, the secrets were revealed, and the offences made known were punished.


41.200 All these things which have been mentioned, have indeed a miraculous appearance, — rather, they are believed to have it, — if they come to men’s ears just as they have been brought forward; and we do not deny that there is in them something which, being placed in the fore front, as the saying is, may stun the ears, and deceive by its resemblance to truth. But if you will look closely at what was done, the personages and their pleasures,201 you will find that there is nothing worthy of the gods, and, as has already been said often, nothing worthy to be referred to the splendour and majesty of this race. For, first, who is there who will believe that he was a god who was pleased with horses running to no purpose,202 and considered it most delightful that he should be summoned203 by such sports? Rather, who is there who will agree that that was Jupiter — whom you call the supreme god, and the creator of all things which are — who set out from heaven to behold geldings vieing with each other in speed, and running204 the seven rounds of the course; and that, although he had himself determined that they should not be equally nimble, he nevertheless rejoiced to see them pass each other, and be passed, some in their haste falling forward upon their heads, and overturned upon their backs along with their chariots, others dragged along and lamed, their legs being broken; and that he considered as the highest pleasures fooleries mixed with trifles and cruelties, which any man, even though fond of pleasure, and not trained to strive after seriousness and dignity, would consider childish, and spurn as ridiculous? Who is there, I say, who will believe — to repeat this word assiduously — that he was divine who, being irritated because a slave was led across the circus, about to suffer and be punished as he deserved, was inflamed with anger, and prepared himself to take vengeance? For if the slave was guilty, and deserved to be punished with that chastisement, why should Jupiter have been moved with any indignation when nothing was being done unjustly, nay, when a guilty fellow was being punished, as was right? But if he was free from guilt, and not worthy of punishment at all, Jupiter himself was the cause of the dancer’s vitiating the games,205 for when he might have helped him, he did him no service — nay, sought both to allow what he disapproved, and to exact from others the penalty for what he had permitted. And why, then, did he complain and declare that he was wronged in the case of that dancer because he was led through the midst of the circus to suffer the cross, with his back torn by rods and scourges?


42.206 And what pollution or abomination could have flowed from this, either to make the circus less pure, or to defile Jupiter, seeing that in a few moments, in a few seconds, he beheld so many thousands throughout the world perish by different kinds of death, and with various forms of torture? He was led across, says my opponent, before the games began to be celebrated. If from a sacrilegious spirit and contempt207 for religion, we have reason to excuse Jupiter for being indignant that he was contemned, and that more anxious care was not given to his games. But if from mistake or accident that secret fault was not observed and known, would it not have beer right and befitting Jupiter to pardon human failings, and grant forgiveness to the blindness of ignorance? But it was necessary that it should be punished. And after this, will any one believe that he was a god who avenged and punished neglect of a childish show by the destruction of a state? that he had any seriousness and dignity, or any steady constancy, who, that he might speedily enjoy pleasure afresh, turned the air men breathed208 into a baneful poison, and ordered the destruction of mortals by plague and pestilence? If the magistrate who presided over the ganges was too careless in learning who on that day had been led across the circus, and blame was therefore contracted, what had the unhappy people done that they should in their own persons suffer the penalty of another’s offences, and should be forced to hurry out of life by contagious pestilences? Nay, what had the women, whose weakness did not allow them to take part in public business, the grown-up209 maidens, the little boys, finally the young children, yet dependent for food on their nurses, — what had these done that they should be assailed with equal, with the same severity, and that before they tasted the joy of life210 they should feel the bitterness of death?


43.211 If Jupiter sought to have his games celebrated, and that afresh,212 with greater care; if he honestly sought to restore213 the people to health, and that the evil which he had caused should go no further and not be increased, would it not have been better that he should come to the consul himself, to some one of the public priests, the pontifex maximus, or to his own flamen Dialis, and in a vision reveal to him the defect in the games occasioned by the dancer, and the cause of the sadness of the times? What reason had there been that he should choose, to announce his wishes and procure the satisfaction desired, a man accustomed to live in the country, unknown from the obscurity of his name, not acquainted with city matters, and perhaps not knowing what a dancer is? And if he indeed knew, as he must have known if he was a diviner,214 that this fellow would refuse to obey, would it not have been more natural and befitting a god, to change the man’s mind, and constrain him to be willing to obey, than to try more cruel methods, and vent his rage indiscriminately, without any reason, as robbers do? For if the old rustic, not being quick in entering upon anything, delayed in doing what was commanded, being kept back by stronger motives, of what had his unhappy children been guilty, that Jupiter’s anger and indignation should he turned upon them, and that they should pay for another’s offences by being robbed of their lives? And can any man believe that he is a god who is so unjust, so impious, and who does not observe even the laws of men, among whom it would be held a great crime to punish one for another, and to avenge one man’s offences upon others?215 But, I am told, he caused the man himself to be seized by the cruel pestilence. Would it not then have been better, nay rather, juster, if it seemed that this should be done, that dread of punishment should be first excited by the father, who216 had been the cause of such passion by217 his disobedient delay, than to do violence to the children, and to consume and destroy innocent persons to make him sorrowful?218 What, pray, was the meaning of this fierceness, this cruelty, which was so great that, his offspring being dead, it afterwards terrified the father by his own danger! But if he had chosen to do this long before, that is, in the first place, not only would not the innocent brothers have been cut off, but the indignant purpose of the deity also would have been known. But certainly, it will be said, when he had done his duty by announcing the vision, the disease immediately left him, and the man was forthwith restored to health. And what is there to admire in this if he removed219 the evil which he had himself breathed into the man, and vaunted himself with false pretence? But if you weigh the circumstances thoroughly, there was greater cruelty than kindness in his deliverance, for Jupiter did not preserve him to the joys of life who was miserable and wishing to perish after his children, but to learn his solitariness and the agonies of bereavement.


44.220 In like manner we might go through the other narratives, and show that in these also, and in expositions of these, something far different from what the gods should be is said and declared about them, as in this very story which I shall next relate, one or two only being added to it, that disgust may not be produced by excess.221 After certain gods were brought from among nations dwelling beyond the sea, you say, and after temples were built to them, after their altars were heaped with sacrifices, the plague-stricken people grew strong and recovered, and the pestilence fled before the soundness of health which arose. What gods, say, I beseech? Aesculapius, you say, the god of health, from Epidaurus, and now settled in the island in the middle of the Tiber. If we were disposed to be very scrupulous in dealing with your assertions, we might prove by your own authority that he was by no means divine who had been conceived and born from a woman’s womb, who bad by yearly stages reached that term of life at which, as is related in your books, a thunderbolt drove him at once from life and light. But we leave this question: let the son of Coronis be, as you wish, one of the immortals, and possessed of the everlasting blessedness222 of heaven. From Epidaurus, however, what was brought except an enormous serpent? If we trust the annals, and ascribe to them well-ascertained truth, nothing else, as it has been recorded. What shall we say then? That Aesculapius, whom you extol, an excellent, a venerable god, the giver of health, the averter, preventer, destroyer of sickness, is contained within the form and outline of a serpent, crawling along the earth as worms are wont to do, which spring from mud; he rubs the ground with his chin and breast, dragging himself in sinuous coils; and that he may be able to go forward, he draws on the last part of his body by the efforts of the first.


45.223 And as we read that he used food also, by which bodily existence is kept up, he has a large gullet, that he may gulp down the food sought for with gaping mouth; he has a belly to receive it, and224 a place where he may digest the flesh which he has eaten and devoured, that blood may be given to his body, and his strength recruited;225 he has also a draught, by which the filth is got rid of, freeing his body from a disagreeable burden. Whenever he changes his place, and prepares to pass from one region to another, he does not as a god fly secretly through the stars of heaven, and stand in a moment where something requires his presence, but, just as a dull animal of earth, he seeks a conveyance on which he may be borne; he avoids the waves of the sea; and that he may be safe and sound, he goes on board ship along with men; and that god of the common safety trusts himself to weak planks and to sheets of wood joined together. We do not think that you can prove and show that that serpent was Aesculapius, unless you choose to bring forward this pretext, that you should say that the god changed himself into a snake, in order that he might be able226 to deceive men as to himself, who he was, or to see what men were. But if you say this, the inconsistency of your own statements will show how weak and feeble such a defence is.227 For if the god shunned being seen by men, he should not have chosen to be seen in the form of a serpent, since in any form whatever he was not to be other than himself, but always himself. But if, on the other hand, he had been intent on allowing himself to be seen — he should not have refused to allow men’s eyes to look on him228 — why did he not show himself such as he knew that he was in his own divine power?229 For this was preferable, and much better, and more befitting his august majesty, than to become a beast, and be changed into the likeness of a terrible animal, and afford room for objections, which cannot be decided,230 as to whether he was a true god, or something different and far removed from the exalted nature of deity.


46.231 But, says my opponent, if he was not a god, why, after he left the ship, and crawled to the island in the Tiber, did he immediately become invisible, and cease to be seen as before? Can we indeed know whether there was anything in the way under cover of which he hid himself, or any opening in the earth? Do you declare, say yourselves, what that was, or to what race of beings it should be referred, if your service of certain personages is in itself certain.232 Since the case is thus, and the discussion deals with your deity, and your religion also, it is your part to teach, and yours to show what that was, rather than to wish to hear our opinions and to await our decisions. For we, indeed, what else can we say than that which took place and was seen, which has been handed down in all the narratives, and has been observed by means of the eyes? This, however, undoubtedly we say was a colubra233 of very powerful frame and immense length, or, if the name is despicable, we say it was a snake,234 we call it a serpent,235 or any other name which usage has afforded to us, or the development of language devised. For if it crawled as a serpent, not supporting itself and walking on feet,236 but resting upon its belly and breast; if, being made of fleshly substance, it lay stretched out in237 slippery length; if it had a head and tail, a back covered with scales, diversified by spots of various colours; if it had a mouth bristling with fangs, and ready to bite, what else can we say than that it was of earthly origin, although of immense and excessive size, although it exceeded in length of body and greatness of might that which was slain by Regulus by the assault of his army? But if we think otherwise, we subvert238 and overthrow the truth. It is yours, then, to explain what that was, or what was its origin, its name, and nature. For how could it have been a god, seeing that it had those things which we have mentioned, which gods should not have if they intend to be gods, and to possess this exalted title? After it crawled to the island in the Tiber, forthwith it was nowhere to be seen, by which it is shown that it was a deity. Can we, then, know whether there was there anything in the way under cover of which it hid itself,239 or some opening in the earth, or some caverns and vaults, caused by huge masses being heaped up irregularly, into which it hurried, evading the gaze of the beholders? For what if it leaped across the river? what if it swam across it? what if it hid itself in the dense forests? It is weak reasoning from this,240 to suppose that that serpent was a god because with all speed it withdrew itself from the eyes of the beholders, since, by the same reasoning, it can be proved, on the other hand, that it was not a god.


47.241 But if that snake was not a present deity, says my opponent, why, after its arrival, was the violence of the plague overcome, and health restored to the Roman people? We, too, on the other hand, bring forward the question, If, according to the books of the fates and the responses of the seers, the god Aesculapius was ordered to be invited to the city, that he might cause it to be safe and sound from the contagion of the plague and of pestilential diseases, and came without spurning the proposal contemptuously, as you say, changed into the form of serpents, — why has the Roman state been so often afflicted with such disasters, so often at one time and another torn, harassed, and diminished by thousands, through the destruction of its citizens times without number? For since the god is said to have been summoned for this purpose, that he might drive away utterly all the causes by which pestilence was excited, it followed that the state should be safe, and should be always maintained free from pestilential blasts, and unharmed. But yet we see, as was said before, that it has over and over again had seasons made mournful by these diseases, and that the manly vigour of its people has been shattered and weakened by no slight losses. Where, then, was Aesculapius? where that deliverer promised by venerable oracles? Why, after temples were built, and shrines reared to him, did he allow a state deserving his favour to be any longer plague-stricken, when he had been summoned for this purpose, that he should cure the diseases which were raging, and not allow anything of the sort which might be dreaded to steal on them afterwards?


48.242 But some one will perhaps say that the care of such a god has been denied243 to later and following ages, because the ways in which men now live are impious and objectionable; that it brought help to our ancestors, on the contrary, because they were blameless and guiltless. Now this might perhaps have been listened to, and said with some reasonableness, either if in ancient times all were good without exception, or if later times produced244 only wicked people, and no others.245 But since this is the case that in great peoples, in nations, nay, in all cities even, men have been of mixed246 natures, wishes, man-nets, and the good and bad have been able to exist at the same time in former ages, as well as in modern times, it is rather stupid to say that mortals of a later day have not obtained the aid of the deities on account of their wickedness. For if on account of the wicked of later generations the good men of modern times have not been protected, on account of the ancient evil-doers also the good of former times should in like manner not have gained the favour of the deities. But if on account of the good of ancient times the wicked of ancient times were preserved also, the following age, too, should have been protected, although it was faulty, on account of the good of later times. So, then, either that snake gained the reputation of being a deliverer while he had been of no service at all, through his being brought to the city when the violence of the disease247 was already weakened and impaired, or the hymns of the fates must be said to have been far from giving248 true indications, since the remedy given by them is found to have been useful, not to all in succession, but to one age only.


49.249 But the Great Mother, also, says my opponent, being summoned from Phrygian Pessinus in precisely the same way by command of the seers, was a cause of safety and great joy to the people. For, on the one hand, a long-powerful enemy was thrust out from the position he had gained in250 Italy; and, on the other, its ancient glory was restored to the city by glorious and illustrious victories, and the boundaries of the empire were extended far and wide, and their rights as freemen were torn from races, states, peoples without number, and the yoke of slavery imposed on them, and many other things accomplished at home and abroad established the renown and dignity of the race with irresistible power. If the histories tell the truth, and do not insert what is false in their accounts of events, nothing else truly251 is said to have been brought from Phrygia, sent by King Attalus, than a stone, not large, which could be carried in a man’s hand without any pressure — of a dusky and black colour — not smooth, but having little corners standing out, and which to-day we all see put in that image instead of a face, rough and unhewn, giving to the figure a countenance by no means lifelike.252


50.253 What shall we say then? Was Hannibal, that famous Carthaginian, an enemy strong and powerful, before whom the fortunes of Rome trembled in doubt and uncertainty, and its greatness shook — was he driven from Italy by a stone?254 was he subdued by a stone? was he made fearful, and timid, and unlike himself by a stone? And with regard to Rome’s again springing to the height of power and royal supremacy, was nothing done by wisdom, nothing by the strength of men; and, in returning to its former eminence, was no assistance given by so many and so great leaders by their military skill, or by their acquaintance with affairs? Did the stone give strength to some, feebleness to others? Did it hurl these down from success, raise the fortunes of others which seemed hopelessly overthrown? And what man will believe that a stone taken from the earth, having255 no feeling, of sooty colour and dark256 body, was the mother of the gods? or who, again, would listen to this, — for this is the only alternative, — that the power257 of any deity dwelt in pieces of flint, within258 its mass,259 and hidden in its veins? And how was the victory procured if there was no deity in the Pessinuntine stone? We may say, by the zeal and valour of the soldiers, by practice, time, wisdom, reason; we may say, by fate also, and the alternating fickleness of fortune. But if the state of affairs was improved, and success and victory were regained, by the stone’s assistance, where was the Phrygian mother at the time when the commonwealth was bowed down by the slaughter of so many and so great armies, and was in danger of utter ruin? Why did she not thrust herself before the threatening, the strong enemy? Why did she not crush and repel assaults260 so terrible before these awful blows fell, by which all the blood was shed, and the life even failed, the vitals being almost exhausted? She had not been brought yet, says my opponent, nor asked to show favour. Be it so;261 but a kind helper never requires to be asked, always offering assistance of his own accord. She was not able, you say, to expel the enemy and put him to flight, while still separated from Italy262 by much sea and land. But to a deity, if really one,263 nothing whatever is remote, to whom the earth is a point, and by whose nod all things have been established.





129 Lit., “these kinds of ceremonies, too, were coupled and mixed,” etc.

130 On this Oehler remarks, that the books of Moses show that it was certainly used in the East in the most ancient times. But Arnobius has expressly restricted his statement to the use of incense “in these parts.”

131 Pium far.

132 [See p. 519, note 19, supra.]

133 Lit., “the returns by which the vital alteration is restored and withdrawn.”

134 So the MS, Hild., and Oehler, reading suffec-tionibus alienis, for which the rest read suffi-  — “the fumigations of others.”

135 Lit., “feel and receive one contact.”

136 Lit., “as each has been made for the touching of a thing coming from without.”

137 So Gelenius and later edd., reading afficitur for the unintelligible reading of MS and Roman edd., efficit — “effects.”

136 So all edd., without remark, reading cog-it-atione, although “meditation” has nothing to do with the sense of smell, and has not been previously mentioned. We should probably read cog-n-atione — “relation,” i.e., to such objects.

139 So LB. and Oehler, reading ni-si. (MS si), and other edd. inserting non, the negative being absolutely necessary to the sense, and supplied in the next clause.

140 Lit., “nor will it have its cause.”

141 Although this is clearly the meaning, Stewechius explained solidos by referring to the ancient belief that such offerings should be wholly consumed, and no fragment left.

142 Briae, drinking-cups, but of their peculiar shape or purpose we know nothing.

143 Lit., “badly.”

144 Lit., “being strangled, may be.”

145 So LB., Orelli, and Oehler, reading with Salmasius m-u-scos (MS -i-). Gelenius proposed cnissas, which would refer to the steam of the sacrifices.

146 Lit., “interior.”

147 So most edd., reading nimirum quia plus valet, for which the MS, followed by both Roman edd., Hild., and Oehler, read primum q. v., which Hild. would explain, “because it prevails above all rather than;” but this is at least very doubtful.

148 Vino inferio.

149 Lit., “bound by religion.”

150 This is admirably illustrated in an inscription quoted by Heraldus: “Jupiter most excellent, supreme, when this day I give and dedicate to thee this altar, I give and dedicate it with these conditions and limits which I say openly to-day.”

151 Circumscriptione verborum.

152 Symphoniae. Evidently musical instruments; but while Isidore speaks of them as a kind of drum, other writers call them trumpets and pipes.

153 At daybreak on opening, and at night on closing the temple, the priests of Isis sang hymns in praise of the goddess (cf. Jos. Scaliger, Castigationes ad Cat., etc., p. 132); and to these Arnobius refers sarcastically, as though they had been calls to awake, and lullabies to sing her asleep.

154 i.e., March 27th, marked Lavatio in a calendar prepared during the reign of Constantius.

155 Lit., “and some rubbing of cinders added,” aliqua frictione cineris; an emendation of Ursinus for the possibly correct MS antiqua f. c. — “the ancient rubbing,” i.e., that practised in early times.

156 Lit., “anniversary.”

157 So the later edd., adopting the emendation of ad suas usiones for the corrupt MS ad (or ab) suasionibus.

158 i.e., feast at which the image of Ceres was placed on a couch, probably the Cerealia, celebrated in April. This passage flatly contradicts Prof. Ramsay’s assertion (Ant., p. 345) that lectisternium is not applied to a banquet offered to a goddess; while it corroborates his statement that such feasts were ordinary events, not extraordinary solemnities, as Mr. Yates says (Smith’s Ant., s. v.). See p. 519, n. 20.

159 Lit., “the impression of the cushions is lifted up and raised,” i.e., smoothed.

160 Thus the 25th of January is marked as the birthday of the Graces, the 1st of February as that of Hercules, the 1st of March as that of Mars, in the calendar already mentioned.

161 The former dedicated to Flora (cf. iii. 25), the latter to Cybele.

162 Singular.

163 So the margin of Ursinus, Elm., LB., Orelli, Hild., and Oehler; the MS reading not being known.

164 Lit., “in dancing motions.”

165 So Meursius, Orelli, and Oehler, reading existimat-ve, all the others retaining the MS -ur-  — “Is Flora thought to be treated,” etc.

166 Lit., “adapts.”

167 Here also there is doubt as to what the reading of the MS is. The 1st ed. reads sine culpa — “without blame,” which is hardly in keeping with the context, emended causa, as above, by Gelenius.

168 So Orelli explains certare hos spiritu as referring to a context in which each strove to speak or sing with one breath longer than the rest.

169 Lit., “an animal of no value.”

170 Lit., “the modesty of their humility.”

171 Lit., “they contain their nature in a corporeal form.”

172 Lit., “of.”

173 Cf. p. 531, n. 160.

174 Lit., “by opposition of the parts of each.” Considerable difficulty has been felt as to the abrupt way in which the book ends as it is arranged in the MS. Orelli has therefore adopted the suggestion of an anonymous critic, and transposed cc. 35, 36, 37 to the end. This does not, however, meet the difficulty; for the same objection still holds good, that there is a want of connection and harmony in these concluding chapters, and that, even when thus arranged, they do not form a fitting conclusion to the whole work.

175 Lit., “of.”

176 Lit., “that effigies have been far removed from them.” This may be understood, either as meaning that the gods had not visible form at all, or, as above, that their likeliness made by men showed no resemblance.

177 50 in Orelli.

178 It is important to notice the evidence in this one sentence of haste and want of revision. In the first line we find a genitive (discordiarum — “dissentions”), but not the noun on which it depends; and in the apodosis a verb (disjunctas esse — “have been removed,” i.e., “are remote”) has no subject, although its gender imperatively requires that has res, or some such words, be supplied. One omission might have been easily ascribed to a slip on the part of the copyist; but two omissions such as these occurring so closely, must, it would seem, be assigned to the impetuous disregard of minutiae with which Arnobius blocked out a conclusion which was never carefully revised. (Cf. Appendix, note 1, and p. 539, n. 267.) The importance of such indications is manifest in forming an opinion on the controversy as to this part of the work.

179 Lit., “are of … those meeting the functions of mortality,” obeunti-um, corrected by Gelenius (according to Orelli) for the MS -bus; retained, though unintelligible, by Canterus, Oberth., and Hild.

180 [See p. 519, note 19, and p. 528, cap. 26, supra.]

181 Lit., “of.” [Cap. 29, p. 529, supra.]

182 Lit., “some time.”

183 Lit., “divine things.”

184 So the MS, both Roman edd., Hild., and Oehler, reading promptae; corrected praesumptae — “taken for granted,” in the rest.

185 i.e., offerings to parents, as the name implies, and other relatives who were dead.

186 35 in Orelli.

187 Lit., “in the writings of which we read.”

188 Pl.

189 Lit., “by satisfaction of.”

190 36 in Orelli. [See note 1, Appendix, p. 539, infra.]

191 Lit., “added evil heavier than evil.”

192 So later edd., reading vaderet from the margin of Ursinus, while the first three retain the MS reading suaderet — “persuade.”

193 i.e., the slave writhing under the scourge.

194 Lit., “of so great power.”

195 i.e., Jupiter.

196 37 in Orelli.

197 Lit., “which either a … made,” etc.

198 Lit., “very near to danger of carrying off liberty.”

199 Cf. ii. 73.

200 38 in Orelli.

201 So the MS, LB., Hild., and Oehler, reading volu-p-tates, i.e., the games and feasts spoken of previously; the other edd. read -n-  — “wishes.”

202 Oehler explains frustra by otiose — “who was leisurely delighted;” but there is no reason why it should not have its usual meaning, as above. [See note 1, Appendix, p. 539.]

203 i.e., from heaven. Instead of e-vocari, however, Heraldus has proposed a-  — “be diverted.”

204 Lit., “unfolding.”

205 Lit., “was in the cause of the vicious dancer.”

206 39 in Orelli.

207 So all edd., rejecting s from MS contemptu-s.

208 Lit., “draughts of air.”

209 So, by omitting two letters, all edd. except 1st and Ursinus, which retain MS adult-er-ae — “adulterous.”

210 Lit., “light.”

211 40 in Orelli. The MS, 1st edd., and Ursinus want si.

212 Lit., “and restored.” [Conf. Pont. Max. here named, with vol. 4. p. 74.]

213 The MS and Ursinus read reddere-t — “if he was to restore;” corrected, as above, by omission of t.

214 i.e., if he is a god. Cf. iii. 20; [specially, note 55, p. 469].

215 Lit., “the necks of.”

216 Lit., “the terror of coercion should begin from the father with whom.”

217 Lit., “even,” et.

218 Lit., “to his grief.”

219 The MS reads rett-ulit, emended ret-  — “gave back,” i.e., got rid of, by the 1st ed. and Ursinus; and rep-, as above, by Gelenius and others.

220 41 in Orelli. [See Appendix, note 1, p. 539.]

221 In the MS and both Roman edd. the section translated on p. 539 is inserted here. Ursinus, however (pp. 210-211), followed by Heraldus (312-313), enclosed it in brackets, and marked it with asterisks. In all other edd. it is either given as an appendix, or wholly rejected.

222 Lit., “sublimity.”

223 42 in Orelli.

224 So the edd., reading et for MS ut (according to Crusius).

225 Lit., “restoration be supplied to his strength.”

226 So Gelenius, merely adding t to the MS posse. The passage is, however, very doubtful.

227 Lit., “how weakly and feeble it is said.”

228 These words, non debuit oculorum negare conspectui, should, Orelli thinks, be omitted; and certainly their connection with the rest of the sentence is not very apparent.

229 Lit., “he was, and such as he had learned that he was, contained in the power of his divinity.”

230 Lit., “to ambiguous contradiction.”

231 43 in Orelli.

232 Lit., “if your services of certain persons are certain,” i.e., if these facts on which your worship is built are well ascertained.

233 What species of snake this was, is not known; the Latin is therefore retained, as the sentence insists on the distinction.

234 Anguem.

235 Serpentem.

236 Lit., “bearing himself on feet, nor unfolding below his own goings.”

237 Lit., “to a.”

238 So Hild. and Oehler, reading labefac-t-amus for the MS -i-.

239 This sentence alone is sufficient to prove that these chapters were never carefully revised by their author, as otherwise so glaring repetitions would certainly have been avoided.

240 Here the MS and both Roman edd. insert the last clause, “what … forests.”

241 44 in Orelli.

242 45 in Orelli.

243 Lit., “wanting.”

244 The MS, 1st ed., Hild., and Oehler read gener-ent, corrected in the rest, as above, -arent.

245 Lit., “all wicked and distinguished by no diversity.”

246 Lit., “the human race has been mixed in,” etc.

247 So all edd., reading vi morbi, except Hild., who retains the MS vi urbi, in which case the italics should denote “of the disease,” instead of “to the city.” The construction, however, seems to make it impossible to adhere to the MS.

248 Lit., “to have erred much from.”

249 46 in Orelli.

250 Lit., “from the possession of Italy.”

251 So all edd. to Orelli, adding -em to the MS quid. [See, concerning Pessinus, p. 492, supra.]

252 Lit., “a face too little expressed with imitation.”

253 47 in Orelli.

254 Lit., “did a stone drive,” etc.

255 Lit., “moved by.”

256 So the MS and edd.; but, on account of the unnecessary repetition, Ursinus proposed to delete atri. Unger (Anal. Propert., p. 87) has suggested very happily arti — “of confined, i.e., small body.”

257 Vim, suggested by Orelli, and adopted by Hild. and Oehler.

258 Lit., “subjected to.”

259 So Hild. and Oehler, reading moli for the unintelligible MS more.

260 Lit., “so great assaults of war.”

261 So Oehler, adding -o to the MS est. The word immediately preceding is in the MS pavorem — “panic,” which is of course utterly out of place, and is therefore corrected, as above, f- in all edd., except 1st, Ursinus, and Hild.

262 So — ab Italia — Oehler has admirably emended the MS habitabilia.

263 Lit., “if he is.”