Front Page Titles (by Subject) DISCOURSE I.: Upon the former English Translations of Tacitus. - The Works of Tacitus, vol. 1 - Gordon's Discourses, Annals (Books 1-3)
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DISCOURSE I.: Upon the former English Translations of Tacitus. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus, The Works of Tacitus, vol. 1 - Gordon’s Discourses, Annals (Books 1-3) [120 AD]
The Works of Tacitus. In Four Volumes. To which are prefixed, Political Discourses upon that Author by Thomas Gordon. The Second Edition, corrected. (London: T. Woodward and J. Peele, 1737). Vol. 1.
Part of: The Works of Tacitus, 4 vols.
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Upon the former English Translations of Tacitus.
Of the Translation byGreenwayand Sir H. Savill.
I AM going to offer to the publick the Translation of a Work, which for wisdom and force, is in higher fame and consideration, than almost any other that has yet appeared amongst men; a Work often translated into many Languages, seldom well into any, into ours worst of all. The first was done in Queen Elizabeth’s reign, the Annals by one Greenway, and four Books of the History by Sir Henry Savill, a man exceeding learned, and esteemed for his critical notes upon Tacitus, as well as for those upon St. Chrysostom, of whose works he has published an elaborate edition. But though he was an able Grammarian, and understood the Antiquities in Tacitus, and his words, his Translation is a mean performance; his stile is stiff, spiritless, and obscure; he drops many of his Author’s ideas, preserves none of his turns, and starves his meaning even where he best conveys it. ’Tis a mere Translation, that rather of one word into another, than that of a dead tongue into a living, or of sense into sense. The Roman idiom is forced and wire-drawn into the English, a task altogether impossible; and not adopted and naturalized, a thing possible enough; and out of a Book prosuse in eloquence, fine spirit and images, he has drawn a work harsh, halting and barren. Ogilby is not more unlike Virgil. Greenway is still worse than Savill; he had none of his learning, he had all his faults and more: The former has at least performed like a school-master, the latter like a school-boy.
Of the English Translation by several hands.
ABOUT a hundred years after them another English Translation was undertaken by several hands, Mr. Dryden and others. Dryden has translated the first Book; but done it almost literally from Mr. Amelot de la Houssaye, with so much haste and little exactness, that besides his many mistakes, he has introduced several Gallicisms: he follows the French author servilely, and writes French English, rather than trust him out of his eye. It is true, la Houssaye is an honest Translator, and one of the foremost: He has gone as far as the thirteenth Annal inclusive; but his phrases are often weak and trifling, and he is subject to all that faintness and circumlocution for which the French tongue is noted. Dryden copies his manner as well as his meaning. It was pure hurry and want of application; for he was a fine writer, had a copious imagination, a good ear, and a flowing stile. Strike away all that is bad in his works, enough will remain to shew him a great Poet, a man of parts and a master of language. Even his many enemies and opposers shew the considerableness of the man; but his excellencies in many things excuse not his faults in others; his Translation of Tacitus is poor and languid, no where derived from the original, generally full of mistakes; at best it is only the French Translator ill translated, or ill imitated.
Of the last Translation of the first Annal.
TACITUS talking of the latter end of Augustus his reign, says, domi res tranquillæ. Eadem magistratuum vocabula. These are two sentences independent of each other; yet Mr. Dryden translates, “all things at Rome being in a settled peace, the Magistrates still retained their former names;” as if the one was all the cause of the other. This blunder is owing to la Houssaye ill understood: tout étoit tranquille à Rome, les Magistrats avoient les mêmes noms: if instead of avoient, he had said ayant, the translation would have come pretty near the French. But the English Translator does not seem to understand French, though he has no other guide, else how could he so miserably mistake, pars multo maxima imminentis dominos variis rumoribus disserebant; as to render it, “the greater part employed their time in various discourses of future matters?” From this it is plain he never looked into the original, or understood it not. He was misled by the French which he appears here to have as little understood; la plus part se plaisoient à faire divers jugemens de ceux qui aloient devenir leurs Maitres.
But more wretched still is what follows: Tacitus represents the Romans discoursing, during the decline of Augustus, concerning the next successors in view, Agrippa Posthumus and Tiberius, and makes them say of Livia the Empress; accedere matrem muliebri impotentia: serviendum feminæ, &c. “His mother of a violent and imperious nature, according to the sex themselves, subjected to the slavery of a woman.” This is jargon and nonsense, tho’ the author seems to have followed the French; qui (Tibere) a une mere imperieuse & violente, selon la coutume du sexe, à laquelle il faudra obéir en esclaves. Well may he be said to follow the French Translator blindly; and less is the wonder that he adopts his Gallicisms where he happens to understand him.
When Drusus, the son of Tiberius, entred the camp of the seditious Legions in Pannonia, and the mutinous soldiery were gathered round him; Tacitus makes a charming and strong description of their behaviour, with the several vicissitudes of their passions, which shifted strangely according as they dreaded his person and authority, or recalled their grievances, and surveyed their own numbers and strength; and he concludes the whole, according to his custom, with a fine reflection: Illi, quotiens oculos ad multitudinem retulerant, vocibus truculentis strepere; rursum, viso Cæsare, trepidare. Murmur incertum, atrox clamor, & repente quies; diversis animorum motibus, pavebant, terrebantque. This is all pretty well translated by La Houssaye. I shall only quote the last clause or reflection: par des mouvemens tout differens, ils prenoient l’epouvante, & la donnoient; and this I quote only to shew how impotently the English Translator hangs by the French phrase and takes it literally: “by their different motions, says he, they gave and took terror in their turns.”
Is not this pithy and sounding? There are numbers of such instances both as to language and strength; insomuch that I have been sometimes tempted to think it not to be Dryden’s: but I have many assurances of its being his. I take it for granted it was a jobb for the Booksellers, carelessly performed by one, who wanted no capacity, but only pains or encouragement to have done it much better, perhaps very well.
Of the last Translation of the second Annal.
THE next Annal is translated by another hand, less negligently, but with small taste and vigour; no resemblance of the original, where in every sentence almost there occur surprizing images and turns, which no where appear in the Translation. ’Tis not the fire of Tacitus, but his embers quenched with English words cold and Gothick. Let any one read particularly the two speeches of Arminius and Maroboduus to their different armies just before they engaged, cap. 45. and 46. and he will find that between Tacitus and his Translator, there is just as much difference as between a living soul and a cold carcase. Yet the lifeless Translation of this Annal compared with that of the third by a different hand, is an able performance.
Of the last Translation of the third Annal.
THIS translation is in truth wretched beyond belief; ’tis below drollery, and a sort of a middle between bad sense and good nonsense. Tacitus says of the arrival of the fleet, which brought Agrippina from Asia with her husband’s funeral urn, and her children now fatherless; classis paulatim successit, non alacri, ut adsolet, remigio, sed cunctis ad tristitiam compositis, An. 3. c. 1. “The fleet (says the Translator) came in, not rowing briskly, as they used to do, but slowly, and with sorrow in their countenances;” a translation worthy of one who could make Tacitus say elsewhere, “Drusus left the City to enquire his fortune:” Would not one think that he went to some remote country to consult a cunning man? Or meant the Translator to joke upon the religion and solemnities of the Romans? The words of Tacitus which he thus perverts, or rather quite drops, are, Drusus urbe egressus repetendis auspiciis: “Drusus went without the gates, to repeat the formality of the auspices.”
Tacitus at the end of his discourse upon laws, says, Cæsar Augustus, potenliæ securus, quæ Triumviratu jusserat, abolevit, deditque jura, quis pace & Principe uleremur: acriera ex eo vincla, inditi custodes, & lege Papia Poppæa præmiis inducti, ut si &c. sed altius penetrabant, (custodes, scil.) Urbemque & Italiam, & quod usquam civium, corripuerant, multorumque excisi status; & terror omnibus intentabatur, nisi Tiberius statuendo remedio, &c. Now observe the sorce, and elegance, and truth, with which this is rendered by the Translator; “Augustus Cesar being settled in his authority, he abolished those things he commanded in the Triumvirate, and gave new laws to be observed in time of peace, and under a Monarch. And that they might be the better kept, he appointed some to look after them:” [as if the laws had been a flock of sheep] “The law Papia Poppea provided, &c. But the informers went farther, not only in the City, but thro’ all Italy, where any citizens were, ruined many families and frightened all. To remedy which Tiberius,” &c. A little farther Tacitus says, adversis animis acceptum, quod filio Claudii socer Sejanus destinaretur: polluisse nobilitatem familiæ videbantur, suspectumque jam nimiæ spei Sejanum ultro extulisse. “There were (says the Translator) great discontents upon Claudius’s son’s being to marry Sejanus’s daughter as a disparagement to him, [to what him? Sejanus was the last named.] “But Sejanus, whose ambition was suspected, was much exalted upon it.”
Tacitus discoursing of the revolt of Florus and Sacrovir, and representing the sentiments of the people upon that and other alarms, says, increpabant Tiberium, quod in tanto rerum motu, libellis accusatorum insumeret operam. An Julium Sacrovirum majestatis crimine reum in Senatu fore? Extitisse tandem viros, qui cruentas epistolas armis cohiberent: miseram pacem vel bello bene mutari. Tanto impensius in securitatem compositus, neque loco, neque vultu mutato, sed ut solitum per illos dies egit: altitudine animi, an compererat modica esse & vulgatis leviora. Hear how this is translated. Blaming “Tiberius for employing himself in reading informers accusations where there was so great commotions. What, said they, have the Senate found Julius Sacrovir guilty of treason? Some have had the courage to suppress by arms the bloody libels of a Tyrant; war is a good change for a miserable peace. But he neither changed place nor countenance; affecting to shew he was not afraid, either through courage, or that he knew things to be less than they were reported.” Was ever good sense so vilely burlesqued? were one to study to ridicule Tacitus, what more miserable stuff, void of all sense and sound, could one make him utter? It puts me in mind of a notable compliment in an address from a learned Society to the late King; “We perceive that you are one that is not afraid that posterity should make mention of you;” or words of the like force and beauty. Neither have I picked out these passages invidiously, as the worst: I have read the whole Annal, and I know no part of it better done.
Of the last Translation of the fourth, fifth, and sixth Annal.
THE fourth, fifth, and sixth Annals are done by another hand, and poorly done. In him you find little of the true meaning of Tacitus; of his spirit and manner nothing at all; but frequent deviations from his sense, and even from all sense. Tacitus in the Character of Sejanus, says; intus summa apiscendi libido, ejusque causa modo largitio & luxus, sæpius industria ac vigilantia, haud minus noxiæ, quotiens parando regno finguntur. Who but the Translator would have discovered, that by these words Tacitus meant to declare, that “virtues are as dangerous as vices, when they meet with a turbulent spirit aspiring to Empire?” Yet the Translation of this passage is as just as that of many others. Sometimes he drops whole phrases and passages, such as he knows not what to make of, and oftner loses out of sight the meaning of others however plain.
Tacitus says, ut series futuri in Agrippinam exitii inciperet, Claudia Pulchra sobrina ejus postulatur, accusante Domitio Afro. Is recens prætura, modicus dignationis, & quoquo facinore properus clarescere, crimen impudicitiæ, adulterum Furnium, veneficia in Principem, & devotiones objectabat. “To begin the ruin of Agrippina, [how insipid and defective!] Domitius Afer lately Pretor [not a word of modicus dignationis] and ready to engage in any thing to gain himself credit [observe the force!] accuses Claudia Pulchra of adultery with Furnius [the words sobrina ejus, which explain the rest, and the word impudicitiæ, one of the articles of the charge, are omitted] “and to have a design on the life of that Prince with her charms and person:” What Prince? Furnius was none; Tiberius has not been mentioned in several pages: it is nonsense; and “a design on his life with her charms and person,” multiplies the nonsense.
What follows fares not much better: Agrippina semper atrox, tum & periculo propinquo accensa, pergit ad Tiberium. “Agrippina always of a violent temper, but at present extremely enraged, runs immediately to Tiberius,&c.” He drops periculo propinquæ, as useless words.
Tacitus says, that amongst other reasons assigned why Tiberius retired from Rome, some alledged the authority assumed by his mother; who having persuaded Augustus, contrary to his inclinations, to postpone Germanicus and adopt Tiberius, did afterwards upbraid Tiberius with so signal a service, and even challenged the Empire as her own: idque Augusta exprobrabat, reposcebat. “The Empress (says the Translator) seemed to reproach him with that favour, and requested it for her son.” What gibberish! she had but one son, and he had it. She, forsooth, reproached her son Tiberius for having given him the Sovereignty, and from the same Tiberius claimed it for the same Tiberius. Sejanus, once when a cave fell in upon Tiberius and his company, covered the Emperor with his own body: major ex eo, says Tacitus. “This admirable and undoubted fidelity,” says the Translator; which Tacitus never said nor meant. How miserably too does he translate, ingentium bellorum cladem æquavit malum improvisum: ejus initium simul & finis exstitit. “Happened a calamity in which we sustained as great a loss as in the greatest defeats, though it was all done in an instant.” I will venture to say, that this is as well done as any other part of all the three Books.
Of the last Translation of the eleventh Annal.
THE eleventh Annal is translated by another Gentleman; but not with another spirit: it is like the rest, full of feebleness and mistakes and low phrases. I shall here give some instances. The Pleaders, in a speech to the Emperor Claudius, in defence of taking fees, and in answer to Silius, who alledged against them the example of certain great Orators of the former age who had never taken any; say, facile Asinium & Messalam, inter Antonium & Augustum bellorum præmiis refertos, &c. c. 7. “Asinius and Messala, who feathered their nests well in the Civil Wars ’twixt Anthony,” &c. This is the Language of a chairman, but of a piece with the rest, such as, a King’s aplaying the good fellow;btrumping upArminius’s title;cbeing equipped with money;dhis reputation began to exert itself far and near;esaw but one poor snake;fmore bloody than he ought to be; Senators gsquabling in the house; A silver mine hwhich bled but a little;iIt was not come to that yet;kAdvice hurts not the guiltless;lMen had recourse to impudence when their ill actions came to be discovered:mothers were in the same predicament with them in that matter;nClaudius as he was easily angry, so he was easily pleased;oMatrimony the last comfort of those who give themselves to lewdness;pAssidavits of her lewdness;qThe vast treasures given to Silius for his drudgery. Such cant, jargon, and ill-favoured nonsense, is called the Translation of Tacitus.
Of the last Translation of the twelfth and thirteenth Annals.
THE two succeeding Annals are Englished by another hand, and miserably Englished they are; rather worse than the former. ’Tis all wretched tittle-tattle, unmeaning and ill-bred; nor could any number of words thrown together at random, without thought or idea, be more shallow or vulgar, more destitute of ornament or sound. To pass by his top Orators; Knack of speaking; Staving off a war any ways. — He being rectine. — The Emperor himself their worthy. Yea, Gentlemen and Senators do make no other original to themselves but from thence; and the like gibberish which occurs in every sentence: I shall here transcribe a passage where he seems to aim at a meaning and to exceed himself: “ r The power his mother had over him “(Nero) dwindled away by degrees, and Nero fell in love with Acte, a freed-woman, and made Otho and Claudius Senecio the confidents of his new Amour, one of which (to wit) Otho, was of a consular family, but Senecio, a son of one of Cesar’s freed-men; who at first without the mother’s knowledge, and since in spite of all she could do, worked himself by degrees into the Prince’s affections, by luxury and secret ways, that no body knew, which the best friends he had, indulged him in, and were pleased to see him take up and content himself with that woman, a thing which did no body an injury: for he had the misfortune to dislike his wife Octavia (whether it be that we naturally slight what we can have, and eagerly pursue what is forbidden) of an illustrious family, and of an unspotted virtue, and ’twas feared he might fall into a vein of debauching women of quality, if he was checked in that intrigue: but Agrippina could not bear that a freed-woman should nose her,” &c. That “a freed-woman should beard her,” says the old Translation.
How clear, how strong, and how just! This is in the thirteenth Book: take one or two samples more out of the twelfth. “ s ’Twas enacted that if they (women) married (to slaves) without their master’s consent, they should remain such” [who should, the women or the slaves? the former were none, and could not remain what they were not; and to say it of the latter, is nonsense.] “Barea Soranus, Consul elect, moved that Pallas (whom Cesar said was the first that brought it into the House) should have the Pretorial honours, and fifteen millions of Sesterces, and, that Scipio Cornelius might have the Thanks of the House, for that being descended from the Kings of Arcadia, he forgot his birth and quality to serve the publick, and was contented to be one of the Prince’s servants. Claudius assured them, that Pallas, satisfied with the honour the Senate had done him, would live as retiredly as he used to do. In short an act was made,” &c.
These two passages are as brightly translated as any in the two Books, indeed beyond most passages.
I shall quote one more; it is in the thirteenth Annal, cap. 26. It was importunately urged in the Senate that such freedmen as by abusing their Lords, had shewn themselves unworthy of their liberty, should remain at the mercy of the said Lords, and be subject to their former chains, nec deerant qui censerent, says Tacitus,sed Consules relationem incipere non ausi ignaro principe (i. e.) “There were Senators too ready to have voted for such a Decree; but the Consuls durst not propose it to the vote without acquainting the Emperor.” Of all this plain matter the Translator understood not one word. He says, “neither were there those wanting who would censure them (nec deerant qui censerent) but the Consuls durst not, without the Emperor’s knowledge, determine the matter.”
I cannot omit one polite phrase more out of this Book. Suilius Senecam increpans, says Tacitus. “He laid it in Seneca’s dish,” says the Translator, c. 42. “laying it in Seneca’s dish,” says the old Translation. He indeed has stolen all he knew of Tacitus from the old Translation, with all its blunders and stupidity, and improved both notably. Behold another specimen. “At Rome he cheated men of their legacies, and wronged the fatherless, who were deluded by him t .” The words of Tacitus are, Romæ testamenta & orbos, velut indagine ejus capi, c. 42.
Of the last Translation of the fourteenth, fifteenth, and sixteenth Annals.
A Fresh hand has undertaken the three following Annals, and by good fortune such a hand as has preserved an eminent uniformity with the foregoing; only he is somewhat more gross. Tacitus says, it was reported that when Agrippina studied to draw Nero her son into an incestuous commerce with herself, Senecam contra muliebres inlecebras subsidium a femina petivisse: immissamque Acten libertam. “Seneca (says the Translator) soon brought in Acte, Nero’s beloved woman, to expel one whore with another.”
When Agrippina had escaped the first attempt upon her life, she dissembled, and seemed not to think it designed, nor to entertain any future apprehensions: simulata securitate: “Under the appearance of security,” (says the Translator.) But as Acerronia one of her maids had perished in that attempt, she ordered her Will to be found, and all her effects to be sealed up. This she did, says Tacitus, without any dissimulation; id tantum non per simulationem, c. 6. “She takes all necessary care (says the Translator) for the cure of her wound; the Testament of Acerronia to be looked out, her coffers to be sealed up, and all things necessary to be done without the least dissimulation:” How nicely he understands the original, and how grammatical is his English! Here however there seems to be some meaning aimed at; in what follows, even that is wanting: “The image of the villains who were stained with the guilt of this parricide, still haunted him.” The words of the original are observabanturque maris illius & litorum gravis adspectus, c. 10.
In truth, to expose the insipidness and nonsense of these Annals, were to transcribe them. In some places he is so gross, that his words will not bear repeating; as particularly where one of Octavia’s maids tells Tigellinus,castiora esse muliebria Octaviæ quam os ejus. His Translation of this is abominable, as well as ridiculous and false; and many such like instances there are in him. I beg leave to quote one short passage more out of this Annal. When that Lady was by the Tyrant divorced, and banished into Campania under a guard; inde crebri questus, says Tacitus,nec occulti per vulgum, cui minor sapientia, & ex mediocritate fortunæ, pauciora pericula sunt, c. 60. This is a fine reflection; observe how execrably it is rendred: “Upon the clamour of the people (who having nothing to lose, are commonly fearless, not out of any love or relenting at his severity) this was remitted.”
The fifteenth Annal is done just like the fourteenth, wretchedly. Here follows a specimen: Corbulo and Cesennius Petus commanded in the East: sed neque Corbulo æmuli patiens (says Tacitus); & Pætus, cui satis ad gloriam erat, si proximus haberetur, despiciebat gesta, nibil cædis aut prædæ, usurpatas nomine tenus urbium expugnationes, dictitans: se tributa ac leges, & pro umbra Regis Romanum jus victis impositurum, c. 6. The misfortune was, (says the Translator) “the one was impatient of a rival, and the other could not endure a superior; and Petus, who ought to have contented himself in being second to Corbulo, ever took pleasure to diminish the glory of his actions, upbraiding him that his victory in taking of towns was imaginary, without conquest or plunder. That he would impose laws and demand contributions, introduce the Roman power in the place of their Knights, and render them a meer shadow.”
He often seems to be without the least glimmering of Tacitus’s meaning, or any meaning, and puts down a parcel of words at random. How clearly does he English, provisis exemplis Caudinæ ac Numantinæ cladis; “resolving to follow the example of Numantian, and the Caudine defeat, which practice they thought they might justify, since the Parthians were at this time more powerful than the Carthaginians or Samnites:” [were they in truth? what a discovery is here?] neque eandem vim Samnitibus Italico populo, aut Pœnis Romani imperii æmulis. He goes on: They were now beginning to talk that the Antients were always commended for their address in suiting all things to the times, and securing a safe retreat when fortune should frown upon them. This is another discovery which he has made from these words: validam quoque & laudatam antiquitatem, quotiens fortuna contra daret, saluti consuluisse, c. 13; that is, “these same venerable Antients, so very stubborn and invincible, and so much adored, always consulted self-preservation, as often as pressed by the assaults of a calamitous fortune.”
When Petus had submitted to such shameful conditions from the Parthians, he, amongst the rest, made a bridge over the river Arsanias, and to hide his disgrace, pretended it was to shorten his own march; when in truth, it was done in obedience to the commands of the Parthians, as a monument of their superiority and conquest: namque iis usui fuit; nostri per diversum iere, c. 15. “It being commodious to them, (quoth the Translator) and not in any manner to molest us.” Were ever two meanings more remote? He often adds words of his own to those of Tacitus, and often drops many more of the original, sometimes whole sentences. Tacitus says, there prevailed then a pestilent custom of making fraudulent Adoptions, by such Candidates for Offices as had no children of their own; and as soon as the Election was over, they instantly dismissed such as they had occasionally adopted. This abuse raised a storm from such as were real parents; who, having applied to the Senate with warm representations against such fallacious dealings in others, and such injury done to themselves, add, sibi promissa legum diu expectata, in ludibrium verti, quando quis sine solicitudine parens, sine luctu orbus, longa patrum vota repente adæquaret, c. 19. All this is dropped by the Translator, and the following jargon of his own inserted: “They took children to quit them at their fancy in contempt of those laws, while they had a great many privileges, for care or sorrow, the other with ease enjoyed the same.”
I am afraid I have tired my reader, as I have done my self, with such a dull deduction of stupidities. I did not at first intend to say any thing of the former Translations: I took it for granted that every man who had seen them, must have condemned them, and found them as pitiful and bad as they really are. But when upon publishing my Proposals, I found that some, who by their titles and profession should be learned, others who by their high quality, ought to have taste and elegance, had commended the former Translation, and uttered their despair of seeing a better; I found it necessary to give some account of that performance, which I think to be as low, defective, and wretched as any thing in print; neither language, nor sense, nor decency, and as much unlike Tacitus the Historian, as the meanest slave of Tacitus the Consul, was unlike his master. It is much worse than the old Translation, which is exceeding bad. It is in my own defence, as well as in defence of Tacitus, that I have censured it, and against my inclination. It looks indeed as if the Translators themselves had no opinion of it, since they have not, as is usual, said one word about it by way of Preface. This is what Mr. Dryden particularly never used to omit doing; why did he omit it now in the Translation of a work of such name and weight? As far as the sixth Annal there is a Translation too of la Houssaye’s Notes, but done with great ignorance and errors.
[a ]Vinolentiam & libidines usurpans, c. 16.
[b ]Frustra Arminium præscribi, c. 16.
[c ]Auctum pecunia, c. 16
[d ]Jam longius clarescere, c. 16.
[e ]Unam omnino anguem visam.
[f ]Atrociorem quam novo regno conduceret, c. 9.
[g ]Obstrepentibus his, c. 6.
[h ]Unde tenuis fructus, c. 20.
[i ]Non eo ventum, c. 26.
[k ]Insontibus innoxia consilia, ib.
[l ]Flagitiis manifestis, subsidium ab audacia petendum, ib.
[m ]Adesse conscios, ib.
[n ]Claudium, ut insidiis incautum, ita iræ properum, ib.
[o ]Nomen matrimonii cupivit, ob magnitudinem insamiæ, cujus apud prodigos novissima voluptas est, ib.
[p ]Codicillos libidinum indices, c. 34.
[q ]Quicquid habitum Neronibus & Drusis in precium probri cessisse, c. 35.
[r ]Cæterum infracta paulatim potentia matris, delapso Nerone in amorem libertæ, cui vocabulum Acte fuit: simul adsumptis in conscientiam Othone & Claudio Senecione adolescentulis decoris, quorum Otho familia Consulari, Senecio liberto Cæsaris patre genitus, ignara matre, dein frustra obnitente, penitus inrepserant per luxum & ambigua secreta. Ne severioribus quidem Principis amicis adversantibus, muliercula, nulla cujusquam injuriâ, cupidines principis explente: quando uxore ab Octavia, nobili quidem & probitatis spectatæ, fato quodam, an quia prævalent inlicita, abhorrebat: metuebaturque, ne in stupra feminarum inlustrium prorumperet, si illa libidine prohiberetur. Sed Agrippina libertam æmulam, &c. An. 13. C. 12. & 13.
[s ]Inter quæ refertur ad patres, de pœna feminarum, quæ servis conjungerentur. Statuiturque, ut ignaro domino ad id prolapsa, in servitutem, sin consensisset, pro liberto haberetur. Pallanti, quem repertorem ejus relationis ediderat Cæsar, prætoria insignia, & centies quinquagesies sestercium censuit consul designatus Barea Soranus: additum à Scipione Cornelio, grates publice agendas, quod regibus Arcadiæ ortus, veterrimam nobilitatem usui publico postponeret, seque inter ministros Principis haberi sineret. Asseveravit Claudius, contentum honore Pallantem, intra priorem paupertatem subsistere. Et fixum est ære publico Senatus Consultum, &c. An. 12. C. 53.
[t ]The old Translation has it, At Rome he cosetted men of their legacies such as died without children, as if he had laid a snare to entrap them. This is foolish, but wiser than the other.