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grass and shrubs upon a pole. These the Latins call Manipuli; and hence it is, that to this day soldiers of the same company are called Manipulares. Remus then having gained those within, and Romulus assaulting the palace without, the tyrant knew not what to do or whom to consult, but amidst his doubts and perplexity was taken and slain. These particulars, though mostly related by Fabius and Diocles the Peparethian, who seems to have been the first that wrote about the founding of Rome, are yet suspected by some as fabulous and groundless. Perhaps however we ought not to be so incredulous, when we see what extraordinary events fortune produces; nor, when we consider what height of greatness Rome attained, can we think it could ever have been effected without some supernatural assistance at first, and an origin more than humana.
Amulius being dead, and the troubles composed, the two brothers were not willing to live in Alba without governing there, nor yet to take the government upon them during their grandfather's life. Having therefore invested him with it, and paid due honours to their mother, they determined to dwell in a city of their own; and for that purpose to build one in the place, where they had received their first nourishment. This seems, at least, to be the most plausible reason for their quitting Alba; and perhaps too it was an unavoidable alternative, as a number of slaves and fugitives was collected about them, either to see their affairs entirely ruined, if these should
41 This passage might be quoted, as an instance of the credulity of Plutarch; but it is perhaps a still stronger proof of his inconsequence : for without false logic, as well as false religion, what connection can be traced between the ultimate Nights of the Roman eagle, and the story of the miraculous wolf?*
disperse, or with them to seek another habitation: for that the people of Alba refused to permit the fugitives to mix with them, or to receive them as citizens, sufficiently appears from the rape of the women; which was not undertaken out of a licentious humour, but deliberately and through necessity from the want of wives, since after they seized them, they treated them with the utmost respect.
As soon as the foundation of the city was laid, they opened a place of refuge for fugitives, which they called the Temple of the Asylæan God”?: Here they received all that came, and would neither deliver up the slave to his master, the debtor to his creditor, nor the murtherer to the magistrate; declaring, that they were directed by the oracle of Apollo to preserve the asylum from all violation. Thus the city was soon peopled “; for it is said, that the houses at first did not exceed a thousand. But of that hereafter.
While they were intent upon building, a dispute soon arose about the place. Romulus having founded a square, which he called Roma, would have the city placed there; but Remus marked out a more secure situation on Mount Aventine, which from him was called Remonium, and has now the name of Rignarium.
22 It is not certain, who this God of Refuge was. M. Dacier conjectures, Apollo. Dionysius of Halicarnassus informs us, that in his time the place, where the asylum had stood, was consecrated to Jupiter. Romulus did not at first receive the fugitives and outlaws within the walls, but allowed them the hill Saturnius, afterward called Capitolinus, for their habitation.
23 Most of the Trojans, of whom there still remained fifty families in Augustus's time, chose to follow the fortunes of Romulus and Remus, as did also the inhabitants of Pallantium and Saturnia, two small towns near Alba.
24 We find no mention either of Remonium or Rignarium in any other writer. An anonymous MS. reads · Remoria:' and Festus
The dispute was referred to the decision of augury; and for this purpose they sat down in the open air, when Remus (we are told) saw six vultures, and Romulus twice as many. Some say, Remus's account of the number he had seen was true, and that of Romulus not so; but, that when Remus came up to him, he did really see twelve 25. Hence the Romans, in their divination by the flight of birds, chiefly regard the vulture: though Herodorus of Pontus relates, that Hercules used to rejoice when a vulture appeared to him, as he was undertaking any great action, This was, probably, because it is a creature the least mischievous of any, pernicious neither to corn, nor plants, nor cattle. It only feeds upon dead carcasses; and neither kills, nor preys upon, any thing that has life2“. As for birds, it does not touch them even when dead, because they are of it's own nature, whereas eagles, owls, and hawks, tear and kill their kind; and according to Æschylus,
What bird is clean, that fellow-birds devours?
Besides, other birds are frequently seen, and may be found at any time; but a vulture is an un
(De L. L. ii.) informs us, that the summit of Mount Aventine was called Remuria, from the time Remus resolved to build the city there. But Bion. Halic. (i. 20.) speaks of mount Aventine and Remuria, as two different places; and Stephanus will have Remuria to have been a city in the neighbourhood of Rome.
25 For more detailed particulars of this very improbable story, which seems to incline even the judicious Ricard to M. Gebelin's allegorical hypothesis, see Dion. Halic. i. 20.*
This is nota.ite accurate; for, though cowardice inclines the vulture to prefer carcasses, it's voracity carries it occasionally to the pursuit of living animals; in which, from natural pasillanimity, it associates with others, contrary to the usual practice of birds of prey. The ar ier of these birds, mentioned below, may be added as a farther proof of the absurdity of the whole narrative.*
common object, and we have seldom met with any of their young: whence the rarity of them has occasioned an absurd opinion in some, that they migrate from other countries; and soothsayers judge every unusual appearance to be preternatural, and the effect of a divine power.
When Remus learned that he was imposed upon, he was highly incensed; and, as Romulus was opening a ditch round the place where the walls were to be built, he ridiculed some parts of the work, and obstructed others. At last, as he presumed to leap over it, some report he fell by the hand of Romulus”; others, by that of Celer, one of his companions. Faustulus also perished in the scuffle, and Plistinus, who being brother to Faustulus, is said to have assisted in bringing Romulus up. Celer fled into Tuscany; and from him such as are swift of foot, or expeditious in business, are by the Romans called celeres. Thus when Quintus Metellus, within a few days after his father's death, provided a show of gladiators,
• The two brothers first differed about the place, where their new city was to be built; and referring the matter to their grandfather, he advised them to have it decided by augury. In this augury, Romulus imposed upon Remus; and, when the former prevailed that the city should be built upon Mount Palatine, the builders being divided into two companies were no better than two factions, At last Remus in contempt leaped over the fosse, and said, “Thus will the enemy leap over it:" upon which Celer gave him a deadly blow, and answered, “ And thus will our citizens repulse the enemy.” Romulus, according to some authors, was so much afflicted at the death of his brother, that he would have laid violemt hands upon himself, if he had not been prevented (L.)—by the solicitations of Larentia. Dion. Halic. (i. 20.) says, that Remus leaped over the wall, when finished; but this can surely refer only to their line of circummarcation.
Plutarch here confounds the two stories of Remus's death, of which Livy (i. 7.) details the separate accounts, though he represents that, which makes him fall by the hand of Romulus in a general squabble, as the more current tradition.*
the people admiring his quick despatch gave him the name of Celer.
Romulus buried his brother Remus, together with his foster-fathers, in Remonia ; and then built his city, having sent for persons from Hetruria who (as it is usual in sacred mysteries) according to stated ceremonies and written rules, were to direct how every thing was to be done. First, a circular ditch was dug about what is now called the Comitium, and the first-fruits of every thing, that is reckoned either good by use or necessary by nature, were cast into it; and then each, bringing a small quantity of the earth of the country whence he came, threw it in promiscuously 29. This ditch had the name of Mundus, the same with that of the universe. In the next place, they marked out the city, like a circle, round this centre; and the founder having fitted to a plough a brazen plough-share, and yoked a bull and a cow", himself drew a deep furrow round
28 The Hetrurians or Tuscans had, as Festus informs us, a sort of ritual, in which were contained the ceremonies to be observed in building cities, temples, altars, walls, and gates. They were instructed in augury and religious rites by Tages, who is said to have been taught by Mercury. (Cic. Div. ii. 23., and Ov. Met. XV. 553.)
29 Ovid does not say, it was a handful of the earth that each had brought out of his own country, but of the earth which he had taken from his neighbours; which was done to signify, that Rome would soon subdue the neighbouring nations. But Isidoruş (xxv, 2.) is of opinion, that by throwing the first-fruits and a handful of earth into the trench, they admonished the heads of the colony, that it ought to be their chief study to procure for their fellow-citizens all the conveniences of life, to maintain peace and union among a people come together from different parts of the world, and thus to form themselves into a body never to be dissolved.
As emblematical of fecundity. The clods turned inward were to imply, that the walls should never be destroyed.*