Cassiodorus 485 - 585 100
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1 Life of Cassiodorus 46 28.5 23:45.
2 For Theodoric. 41 23.4 19:30.
3 For Theodoric 53 34.4 28:40.
4 For Theorodic 51 28.9 24:05.
5 For Theodoric 44 29.5 24:35.
6 Formulae 25 25.1 20:55.
7 Formulae 47 27.9 23:15.
8 For Athalaric. 11th King Tulum 33 34.5 28:45.
9 For Athalaric 25 30.4 25:20.
10 4 Amalasuentha 22 Theodahad, 4 Wife Gudelina, 5 Witigis 35 34.4 28:40.
11 As Praefectus Praefectus, 1 for Senate
40
37.3 31:05.
12 As Praetorian Praefect 28 41.1 34:15.
 
Page Data
Body Pages 399.3 Time 5:32:45
Chapters 12/468
Pages per chapter .85
Pages per year .0
 
 
3 For Theodoric 53 34.4 28:40.
 
4 For Theorodic 51 28.9 24:05.
 
5 For Theodoric 44 29.5 24:35.
 
6 Formulae 25 25.1 20:55.
 
7 Formulae 47 27.9 23:15.
 
 
9 For Athalaric 25 30.4 25:20.
 
 
 
     
1 TO EMPEROR ANASTASIUS. Persuasives to peace 1.7 0.
2 THEON. Manufacture of purple dye 1.9 0.
3 CASSIODORUS, father of author. His praises .6 0.
4 SENATE. Great deeds of ancestors of Cassiodorus 2.2 0.
5 FLORIANUS. End of litigation .4 0.
6 AGAPITUS. Mosaics for Ravenna .6 0.
7 FELIX. Inheritance of Plutianus .6 0.
8 AMABILIS. Prodigality of Neotherius .4 0.
9 BISHOP EUSTORGIUS. Offences of Ecclesiastics .3 0.
10 BOETIUS. Frauds of moneyers 1.1 0.
11 SERVATUS. Violence of Breones .4 0.
12 EUGENIUS. Appointment as Magister Officium .6 0.
13 SENATE. On same .4 0.
14 FAUSTUS. Collection of 'Tertiae' .3 0.
15 FESTUS. Interests of absent .4 0.
16 JULIANUS. Remission of taxes .4 0.
17 GOTHIC & ROMAN INHABITANTS OF DERTONA. Fortification of Camp .4 0.
18 DOMITIANUS & WILIAS. Statute of Limitations, & c. .8 0.
19 SATURNINUS & VERBUSIUS. Rights of Fiscus .4 0.
20 ALBINUS & ALBIENUS. Circus quarrels .6 0.
21 MAXIMIAN & ANDREAS. Embellishment of Rome .6 0.
22 MARCELLUS. His promotion to rank of Advocatus Fisci .4 0.
23 COELIANUS & AGAPITUS. Litigation between Senators .4 0.
24 ALL GOTHS. Call to arms 1.3 0.
25 SABINIANUS. Repair of walls of Rome .4 0.
26 FAUSTUS. Immunity of certain Church property .6 0.
27 SPECIOSUS. Circus quarrels .9 0.
28 GOTHS & ROMANS. Building of walls of Rome .4 0.
29 THE LUCRISTANI ON RIVER SONTIUS. Postal Service .4 0.
30 SENATE. Injury to public peace from Circus rivalries .6 0.
31 THE ROMAN PEOPLE. Same subject .5 0.
32 AGAPITUS. Same subject .6 0.
33 Arrangements for Pantomime .3 0.
34 FAUSTUS. Exportation of corn .3 0.
35 Unreasonable delays in transmission of corn .8 0.
36 THERIOLUS. Guardianship of sons of Benedictus .4 0.
37 CRISPIANUS. Justifiable homicide .7 0.
38 BAION. Hilarius to have possession of his property .7 0.
39 FESTUS. Nephews of Filagrius to be detained in Rome .6 0.
40 ASSUIN (or ASSIUS). Inhabitants of Salona to be drilled .4 0.
41 AGAPITUS. Enquiries into character of younger Faustus .5 0.
42 ARTEMIDORUS. Appointment as Praefect of City .8 0.
43 SENATE. Promotion of Artemidorus .5 0.
44 THE PEOPLE OF ROME. Same subject .4 0.
45 BOETIUS. Water-clock & sundial for Burgundian King 2 0.
46 GUNDIBAD. Same subject .8 0.
1 TO EMPEROR ANASTASIUS. Consulship of Felix .8 0.
2 FELIX. Same subject .9 0.
3 SENATE. Same subject .6 0.
4 ECDICIUS (or BENEDICTUS). Collection of _Siliquaticum .3 0.
5 FAUSTUS. Soldiers' arrears .6 0.
6 AGAPITUS. Embassy to Constantinople .4 0.
7 SURA (or SUNA). Embellishment of City .4 0.
8 BISHOP SEVERUS. Compensation for damage by troops .4 0.
9 FAUSTUS. Allowance to retired charioteer .4 0.
10 SPECIOSUS. Abduction of Agapita .5 0.
11 PROVINUS (PROBINUS?). Gift unduly obtained from Agapita .9 0.
12 THE COUNT OF SILIQUATARII, & HARBOUR MASTER (OF PORTUS?). Prohibition of export of lard .5 0.
13 FRUINARITH. Dishonest conduct of Venantius .5 0.
14 SYMMACHUS. Romulus parricide .8 0.
15 VENANTIUS. Appointment as Comes Domesticorum .5 0.
16 SENATE. Same subject. Panegyric on Liberius, father of Venantius 1.6 0.
17 POSSESSORS, DEFENSORS, & CURIALS OF TRIDENTUM (TRIENT). Immunity from Tertiae enjoyed by lands granted by King .4 0.
18 BISHOP GUDILA. Ecclesiastics as Curiales .6 0.
19 GOTHS & ROMANS, & KEEPERS OF HARBOURS & MOUNTAIN FORTRESSES. Domestic treachery & murder .6 0.
20 UNILIGIS (or WILIGIS). Order for provision ships .3 0.
21 JOANNES. Drainage-concession too timidly acted upon .6 0.
22 FESTUS. Ecdicius to be buried by his sons .4 0.
23 AMPELIUS, DESPOTIUS, & THEODULUS. Protection for owners of potteries .3 0.
24 SENATE. Arrears of taxation due from Senators .8 0.
25 SENATE. AN EDICT. Evasion of taxes by rich .8 0.
26 FAUSTUS. Regulations for corn-traffic .7 0.
27 JEWS LIVING IN GENOA. Rebuilding of Synagogue .5 0.
28 STEPHANUS. Honours bestowed on retirement .5 0.
29 ADILA. Protection to dependents of Church .5 0.
30 FAUSTUS. Privileges granted to Church of Milan .5 0.
31 DROMONARII [ROWERS IN EXPRESS-BOATS]. State Galleys on Po .5 0.
32 SENATE. Drainage of marshes of Decennonium .5 0.
33 DECIUS. Same subject .5 0.
34 ARTEMIDORUS. Embezzlement of City building funds .6 0.
35 TANCILA. Theft of statue at Como .6 0.
36 EDICT. Same subject .3 0.
37 TO FAUSTUS. Largesse to citizens of Spoleto .3 0.
38 " " Immunity from taxation .4 0.
39 ALOISIUS. Hot springs of Aponum 1.5 0.
40 BOETIUS. Harper for King of Franks 1.9 0.
41 LUDUIN [CLOVIS]. Victories over Alamanni .9 0.
3 For Theodoric 53 34.4 28:40.
1 TO ALARIC. Dissuades from war with Franks .6 0.
2 GUNDIBAD. Dissuades from war .5 0.
3 THE KINGS OF HERULI, WARNI (GUARNI), & THURINGIANS. Attempt to form a Teutonic coalition .8 0.
4 LUDUIN (LUDWIG, or CLOVIS). To desist from war on Alaric 1.2 0.
5 IMPORTUNUS. Promotion to Patriciate .5 0.
6 SENATE. Same subject .9 0.
7 JANUARIUS. Reproof for alleged extortion .5 0.
8 VENANTIUS. Remissness in collection of public revenue .6 0.
9 POSSESSORES, DEFENSORES, & CURIALES OF AESTUNAE. Marbles for Ravenna .4 0.
10 FESTUS. Same subject .2 0.
11 ARGOLICUS. Appointment to Praefecture of City .4 0.
12 SENATE. Same subject .6 0.
13 SUNHIVAD. Appointment as Governor of Samnium .3 0.
14 BISHOP AURIGENES. Accusations against servants of a Bishop .3 0.
15 THEODAHAD. Disposal of contumacious person .3 0.
16 GEMELLUS. Appointment as Governor of Gaulish Provinces .5 0.
17 GAULISH PROVINCIALS. Proclamation .8 0.
18 GEMELLUS. Re-patriation of Magnus .4 0.
19 DANIEL. Supply of marble sarcophagi .6 0.
20 GRIMODA & FERROCINCTUS. Oppression of Castorius by Faustus .7 0.
21 FAUSTUS. Disgrace & temporary exile .3 0.
22 ARTEMIDORUS. Invitation to King's presence .4 0.
23 COLOSSAEUS. Appointment as Governor of Pannonia .6 0.
24 BARBARIANS & ROMANS SETTLED IN PANNONIA. Same subject .7 0.
25 SIMEON. Tax-collecting & iron-mining in Dalmatia .6 0.
26 SUN. Simeon's journey to Dalmatia .2 0.
27 JOANNES. Protection against Praetorian Praefect .4 0.
28 CASSIODORUS (SENIOR). Invitation to Court .4 0.
29 ARGOLICUS. Repair of granaries in Rome .6 0.
30 " Repair of Cloacae " " .6 0.
31 SENATE. Conservation of aqueducts & temples in Rome 1.2 0.
32 GEMELLUS. Remission of taxes to citizens of Arles .5 0.
33 ARGOLICUS. Promotion of Armentarius & Superbus .4 0.
34 INHABITANTS OF MASSILIA. Appointment of Governor .4 0.
35 ROMULUS. Gifts not to be revoked 1 0.
36 ARIGERN. Complaints against Venantius .5 0.
37 BISHOP PETER. Alleged injustice .6 0.
38 WANDIL [VUANDIL]. Gothic troops not to molest citizens .4 0.
39 FELIX. Largesse to charioteers of Milan .4 0.
40 PROVINCIALS SETTLED IN GAUL. Exemption from taxation .5 0.
41 GEMELLUS. Corn for garrisons on Durance .4 0.
42 PROVINCIALS IN GAUL. Exemption from military contributions .4 0.
43 UNIGIS. Fugitive slaves to be restored to owners .8 0.
44 LANDOWNERS (POSSESSORES) OF ARLES. Repair of walls, &c. .5 0.
45 ARIGERN. Dispute between Roman Church & Samaritans .5 0.
46 ADEODATUS. Further charges against Venantius 1.1 0.
47 FAUSTUS. Banishment of Jovinus to Vulcanian Islands .9 0.
48 GOTHS & ROMANS LIVING NEAR FORT VERRUCA. Fortification 2.3 0.
49 POSSESSORES, DEFENSORES, & CURIALES OF CATANA. Repair of walls .6 0.
50 PROVINCIALS OF NORICUM. Alamanni & Noricans to exchange cattle .5 0.
51 FAUSTUS. Stipend of charioteer. Description of Circus 4.2 0.
52 CONSULARIS. Roman land surveying 1.6 0.
53 APRONIANUS. Water-finders 1.2 0.
4 For Theorodic 51 28.9 24:05.
1 TO KING OF THURINGIANS. Marriage with Theodoric's niece 1.1 0.
2 KING OF HERULI. Adoption as son .9 0.
3 SENARIUS. Appointment as Comes Patrimonii .6 0.
4 SENATE. Same subject .4 0.
5 AMABILIS. Supply of provisions to Gaulish Provinces .6 0.
6 SYMMACHUS. Sons of Valerian to be detained in Rome .7 0.
7 SENARIUS. Losses by shipwreck to be refunded .8 0.
8 POSSESSORES & CURIALES OF FORUM LIVII (FORLI). Transport of timber to Alsuanum .3 0.
9 OSUIN. '_Tuitio regii nominis_' .3 0.
10 JOANNES. Repression of lawless custom of Pignoratio 1.2 0.
11 SENARIUS. Dispute between Possessores & Curiales .2 0.
12 MARABAD & GEMELLUS. Complaint of Archotamia .6 0.
13 SENARIUS. Supplies for Colossaeus & suite .5 0.
14 GESILA. Evasion of land-tax by Goths .8 0.
15 BENENATUS. New rowers, & their qualifications .5 0.
16 SENATE. Arigern entrusted with charge of City of Rome .5 0.
17 IDA. Church possessions to be restored .4 0.
18 ANNAS. Enquiry concerning a priestly Ghoul .5 0.
19 GEMELLUS. Corn, wine, & oil to be exempt from Siliquaticum .5 0.
20 GEBERICH. Church land to be restored .5 0.
21 GEMELLUS. Promptness & integrity required .3 0.
22 ARGOLICUS. } .6 0.
23 ARIGERN. } Accusation of magic against Roman Senators .3 0.
24 ELPIDIUS. Architectural restoration at Spoleto .4 0.
25 ARGOLICUS. Petrus to become Senator .4 0.
26 CITIZENS OF MARSEILLES. Remission of taxes .3 0.
27 TEZUTZAT. } 0 0.
28 DUDA. } Petrus assaulted by his Defensor .8 0.
29 ARGOLICUS. Official tardiness rebuked .4 0.
30 ALBINUS. Erection of workshops near Roman Forum .6 0.
31 AEMILIANUS. Aqueduct to be promptly finished .4 0.
32 DUDA. Crown rights to be asserted with moderation .8 0.
33 JEWS OF GENOA. Their privileges confirmed .5 0.
34 DUDA. Reclamation of buried treasure .7 0.
35 REPRESENTATIVES (ACTORES) OF ALBINUS. Extravagant minor .5 0.
36 FAUSTUS. Remission of taxes for Provincials .7 0.
37 THEODAGUNDA. To do justice to Renatus .6 0.
38 FAUSTUS. Taxes to be reduced .5 0.
39 THEODAHAD. His encroachments .9 0.
40 REPRESENTATIVES (ACTORES) OF PROBINUS. affair of Agapita .7 0.
41 JOANNES. Unjust judgment reversed .7 0.
42 ARGOLICUS. Property to be restored to sons of Volusian .8 0.
43 SENATE. Punishment of incendiaries of Jewish Synagogue 1.1 0.
44 ANTONIUS. To do justice to Stephanus .6 0.
45 COMITES, DEFENSORES, & CURIALES OF TICINUM (PAVIA). Heruli to be forwarded on their way to Ravenna .4 0.
46 MARABAD. Case of Liberius' wife to be reheard .3 0.
47 GUDISAL. Abuses of Cursus Publicus 1.4 0.
48 EUSEBIUS. His honourable retirement .5 0.
49 PROVINCIALS & LONG-HAIRED MEN, DEFENSORES AND CURIALES RESIDING IN SUAVIA. Appointment of Governor, &c. .7 0.
50 FAUSTUS. Campanian taxes remitted. Eruption of Vesuvius 1.8 0.
51 SYMMACHUS. Restoration of Theatre of Pompey .9 0.
5 For Theodoric 44 29.5 24:35.
1 TO KING OF VANDALS. Thanking for presents .6 0.
2 THE HAESTI. Their present of amber 1 0.
3 HONORATUS, Missing 0 0.
4 SENATE. Promotion to Quaestorship, & co. 2.2 0.
5 MANNILA. Abuses of Cursus Publicus .6 0.
6 STABULARIUS., Missing 0 0.
7 JOANNES. } Default in payments to Treasury 1.1 0.
8 ANASTASIUS. Transport of marbles to Ravenna .4 0.
9 POSSESSORES OF FELTRIA. New city to be built .6 0.
10 VERANUS. } .8 0.
11 GEPIDAE. } Payment on march to Gaul .8 0.
12 THEODAHAD. His avarice & injustice .3 0.
13 EUTROPIUS & ACRETIUS. Commissariat 1.4 0.
14 SEVERI(A)NUS. Financial abuses in Suavia .1 0.
15 POSSESSORES IN SUAVIA. Same subject .6 0.
16 ABUNDANTIUS. Formation of navy 1 0.
17 Same subject 1.1 0.
18 UVILIAS [WILLIAS? Missing 0 0.
19 GUDINAND Missing 0 0.
20 AVILF .7 0.
21 CAPUANUS Missing. 0 0.
22 SENATE. } Appointment as Rector Decuriarum 2.1 0.
23 ABUNDANTIUS. Archery drill .3 0.
24 EPIPHANIUS. Property of intestate claimed for State .7 0.
25 BACAUDA. Appointment as Tribunus Voluptatum .6 0.
26 GOTHS SETTLED IN PICENUM & SAMNIUM. Summons to the royal presence .5 0.
27 GUDUIM. same .4 0.
28 CARINUS. Invitation to Court .2 0.
29 NEUDES. Blind Gothic warrior enslaved .6 0.
30 GUDUI[M]. Servile tasks imposed on free Goths .4 0.
31 DECORATUS. Arrears of Siliquaticum to be enforced .4 0.
32 BRANDILA. Assault of his wife on Regina .6 0.
33 WILITANCH. Adulterous connection between Brandila and Regina .8 0.
34 ABUNDANTIUS. Frontosus compared to chameleon 1.3 0.
35 LUVIRIT & AMPELIUS. Punishment of fraudulent shipowners .6 0.
36 STARCEDIUS. Honourable discharge .4 0.
37 JEWS OF MILAN. Rights of Synagogue not to be invaded .7 0.
38 ALL CULTIVATORS. Shrubs obstructing aqueduct of Ravenna .6 0.
39 AMPELIUS & LIVERIA. Abuses in administration of Spanish government 2 0.
40 CYPRIAN Missing 0 0.
41 SENATE. } Promotion to Comitiva Sacrarum Largitionum 1.9 0.
42 MAXIMUS. Rewards to performers in Amphitheatre 1.3 0.
43 TRANSMUND [THRASAMUND]. Complains of protection given to Gesalic .8 0.
44 TRANSMUND [THRASAMUND]. Reconciliation .9 0.
6 Formulae 25 25.1 20:55.
1 CONSULSHIP 2 0.
2 PATRICIATE .5 0.
3 PRAETORIAN PRAEFECTURE 3.4 0.
4 PRAEFECTURE OF CITY 1.3 0.
5 QUAESTORSHIP 1.6 0.
6 MAGISTERIAL DIGNITY, & ITS EXCELLENCY (MAGISTRATUS OFFICIORUM) 1.5 0.
7 OFFICE OF COMES SACRARUM LARGITIONUM 1 0.
8 PRIVATARUM, & ITS EXCELLENCY 1 0.
9 COUNT OF PATRIMONY, & ITS EXCELLENCY 1.4 0.
10 FOR PROMOTION AS PROCERES PER CODICILLOS VACANTES .7 0.
11 CONFERRING RANK OF AN ILLUSTRIS & TITLE OF COMES DOMESTICORUM, WITHOUT OFFICE .7 0.
12 BESTOWAL OF COUNTSHIP OF FIRST ORDER, WITHOUT OFFICE .7 0.
13 BESTOWING HONORARY RANK OF MASTER OF BUREAU AND COUNT OF FIRST ORDER ON AN OFFICER OF COURTS IN ACTIVE SERVICE 1.2 0.
14 BESTOWING RANK AS A SENATOR .6 0.
15 OF VICARIUS OF CITY OF ROME .9 0.
16 NOTARIES .8 0.
17 REFERENDARII .9 0.
18 PRAEFECTUS ANNONAE, & HIS EXCELLENCY 1 0.
19 COUNT OF CHIEF PHYSICIANS 1 0.
20 OFFICE OF A CONSULAR, & ITS EXCELLENCY .6 0.
21 GOVERNOR (RECTOR) OF A PROVINCE .9 0.
22 COUNT OF CITY OF SYRACUSE .7 0.
23 COUNT OF NAPLES .9 0.
24 TO GENTLEMEN-FARMERS & COMMON COUNCILMEN OF THE CITY OF NAPLES .4 0.
25 'DE COMITIVA PRINCIPIS MILITUM'(?) .4 0.
7 Formulae 47 27.9 23:15.
1 COUNT OF A PROVINCE .8 0.
2 PRAESES .9 0.
3 COUNT OF GOTHS IN SEVERAL PROVINCES 1.8 0.
4 DUKE OF RAETIA .7 0.
5 PALACE ARCHITECT 1.2 0.
6 COUNT OF AQUEDUCTS 2.5 0.
7 PRAEFECT OF WATCH OF CITY OF ROME 1.2 0.
8 RAVENNA .3 0.
9 COUNT OF PORTUS .7 0.
10 TRIBUNUS VOLUPTATUM .8 0.
11 DEFENSOR OF ANY CITY .6 0.
12 CURATOR OF A CITY .5 0.
13 COUNT OF ROME 1.2 0.
14 RAVENNA .6 0.
15 ADDRESSED TO PRAEFECT OF CITY ON APPOINTMENT OF AN ARCHITECT 1 0.
16 COUNT OF ISLANDS OF CURRITANA & CELSINA .5 0.
17 PRESIDENT OF LIME-KILNS .6 0.
18 ARMOURERS .4 0.
19 TO PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT CONCERNING ARMOURERS .3 0.
20 SAME .6 0.
21 RELATING TO COLLECTION OF BINA & TERNA Missing 0 0.
22 EXHORTATION ADDRESSED TO TWO SCRINIARII .4 0.
23 VICARIUS OF PORTUS .3 0.
24 PRINCEPS OF DALMATIA .5 0.
25 RECOMMENDING PRINCIPES TO COMES .6 0.
26 COUNTSHIP OF SECOND RANK IN DIVERS CITIES .6 0.
27 TO DIGNIFIED CULTIVATORS & CURIALES .2 0.
28 ANNOUNCING APPOINTMENT OF A COMES TO CHIEF OF HIS STAFF .4 0.
29 CONCERNING GUARD AT GATES OF A CITY .4 0.
30 TRIBUNATE IN PROVINCES .3 0.
31 PRINCEPS OF CITY OF ROME .5 0.
32 MASTER OF MINT .7 0.
33 RESPECTING AMBASSADORS OF VARIOUS NATIONS .3 0.
34 SUMMONS TO KING'S COURT (UNSOLICITED) .3 0.
35 SUMMONS TO COURT (SOLICITED) .3 0.
36 GRANTING TEMPORARY LEAVE OF ABSENCE .4 0.
37 CONFERRING RANK OF A SPECTABILIS .3 0.
38 CLARISSIMUS .3 0.
39 BESTOWING 'POLICE PROTECTION' .7 0.
40 FOR CONFIRMATION OF MARRIAGE & LEGITIMATION OF OFFSPRING .5 0.
41 CONFERRING RIGHTS OF FULL AGE .8 0.
42 EDICT TO QUAESTOR, ORDERING PERSON WHO ASKS FOR PROTECTION OF SAJO TO GIVE BAIL 1 0.
43 APPROVING APPOINTMENT OF A CLERK IN RECORD-OFFICE .2 0.
44 GRANT OF PUBLIC PROPERTY ON CONDITION OF IMPROVEMENT .5 0.
45 REMISSION OF TAXES WHERE TAXPAYER HAS ONLY ONE HOUSE, TOO HEAVILY ASSESSED .8 0.
46 LEGITIMATING MARRIAGE WITH A FIRST COUSIN .6 0.
47 TO PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT, DIRECTING SALE OF PROPERTY OF A CURIALIS 1 0.
1 EMPEROR JUSTIN. Announcement of Athalaric's accession .9 0.
2 SENATE. Same subject 1.3 0.
3 ROMAN PEOPLE. Same subject 1.1 0.
4 ROMANS SETTLED IN ITALY & DALMATIAS. Same subject .4 0.
5 GOTHS SETTLED IN ITALY. Same subject .8 0.
6 LIBERIUS, GOVERNOR OF GAUL. " " .4 0.
7 PROVINCIALS SETTLED IN GAUL. Same subject .5 0.
8 BISHOP VICTORINUS. Same subject .5 0.
9 TULUM. Raised to Patriciate. His praises 1.9 0.
10 SENATE. Same subject 2 0.
11 TULUM'S ADDRESS TO SENATE. Elevation to Patriciate .7 0.
12 TO ARATOR. Promotion to Count of Domestics 1 0.
13 AMBROSIUS. Appointment to Quaestorship .9 0.
14 SENATE. Same subject .8 0.
15 " Election of Pope Felix III (or IV) 1.4 0.
16 OPILIO. Appointment as Count of Sacred Largesses 2.6 0.
17 SENATE. Same subject 1.2 0.
18 FELIX. Promotion to Quaestorship .8 0.
19 SENATE. Same subject .9 0.
20 ALBIENUS. Appointment as Praetorian Praefect .9 0.
21 CYPRIAN Missing 0 0.
22 SENATE. } Elevation to Patriciate 1.3 0.
23 BERGANTINUS. Gifts to Theodahad .7 0.
24 CLERGY OF ROMAN CHURCH. Ecclesiastical immunities 1.9 0.
25 JOANNES. Confirmation of Tulum's gift of property 2 0.
26 INHABITANTS OF REATE & NURSIA. To obey their Prior .7 0.
27 DUMERIT & FLORENTINUS. To suppress robbery at Faventia .5 0.
28 CUNIGAST. Enforced slavery of Possessores (or Coloni?) .8 0.
29 DIGNIFIED CULTIVATORS & CURIALS OF PARMA. Necessity for sanitary measures .5 0.
30 GENESIUS. Same subject .8 0.
31 SEVERUS. Dissuasions from a country life, & praises of Bruttii 2.3 0.
32 " Fountain of Arethusa 1.3 0.
33 " Feast of St. Cyprian 2.2 0.
9 For Athalaric 25 30.4 25:20.
1 HILDERIC. Murder of Amalafrida 1 0.
2 EDICT. Oppression of Curiales 1.9 0.
3 BERGANTINUS. Gold-mining in Italy 1.1 0.
4 ABUNDANTIUS. Curiales to become Possessores 1 0.
5 CERTAIN BISHOPS & FUNCTIONARIES. Forestalling & regrating prohibited .9 0.
6 A CERTAIN PRIMISCRINIUS. Leave to visit Baiae 1 0.
7 REPARATUS. Appointment to Praefecture of City 1 0.
8 OSUIN (or OSUM). Promotion to Governorship of Dalmatia & Savia .5 0.
9 GOTHS & ROMANS IN DALMATIA & SAVIA. Same subject .7 0.
10 PROVINCIALS OF SYRACUSE. Remission of Augmentum 1.1 0.
11 GILDIAS. {Oppression by King's} Missing 0 0.
12 VICTOR & WITIGISCLUS (or WIGISICLA). { officers rebuked } .6 0.
13 WILLIAS. Increase of emoluments of Domestici .7 0.
14 GILDIAS. Charge of oppression 2.7 0.
15 POPE JOHN II. Against Simony at Papal elections 1.6 0.
16 SALVANTIUS. Same subject .3 0.
17 Release of two Roman citizens 1.3 0.
18 EDICT. Offences against Civilitas 3.9 0.
19 SENATE. Promulgation of Edict .7 0.
20 JUDGES OF PROVINCES. Same subject .4 0.
21 SENATE. Increase of Grammarians' salaries 1.6 0.
22 PAULINUS. Appointment as Consul .6 0.
23 SENATE. Same subject .9 0.
24 SENATOR [CASSIODORUS HIMSELF]. Appointment as Praetorian Praefect, &c. 3.7 0.
25 SENATE. Eulogy of Cassiodorus on his appointment. His Gothic History. His official career. His military services. His religious character 412-413 2.3 0.
1 QUEEN AMALASUENTHA TO EMPEROR JUSTINIAN. Association of Theodahad in Sovereignty .7 0.
2 KING THEODAHAD TO EMPEROR JUSTINIAN. Same subject .9 0.
3 AMALASUENTHA TO SENATE. Same. Praises of Theodahad 2.4 0.
4 THEODAHAD TO SENATE. Same. Praises of Amalasuentha 3.1 0.
5 " HIS MAN THEODOSIUS. Followers of new King to live justly .7 0.
6 " PATRICIUS. Appointment to Quaestorship .8 0.
7 " SENATE. Same subject .8 0.
8 AMALASUENTHA TO JUSTINIAN. Acknowledging present of marbles .4 0.
9 THEODAHAD TO JUSTINIAN. Same subject .2 0.
10 AMALASUENTHA TO THEODORA. Salutation .5 0.
11 THEODAHAD TO MAXIMUS. Appointment to office of Primicerius 1 0.
12 " SENATE. Same subject .7 0.
13 " Summons to Ravenna. Suspicions of Senators 1.2 0.
14 " ROMAN PEOPLE. Dissensions between citizens of Rome & Gothic troops 1.4 0.
15 EMPEROR JUSTINIAN. Letter of introduction for Ecclesiastic .4 0.
16 SENATE. Assurances of good-will .9 0.
17 THE ROMAN PEOPLE. Same subject .6 0.
18 SENATE. Gothic garrison for Rome 1.2 0.
19 JUSTINIAN. Embassy of Peter 1.2 0.
20 QUEEN GUDELINA TO THEODORA, AUGUSTA. Embassy of Rusticus 1.3 0.
21 Soliciting friendship .4 0.
22 THEODAHAD TO JUSTINIAN. Entreaties for peace .9 0.
23 GUDELINA TO THEODORA. Same subject .9 0.
24 JUSTINIAN. Same subject .2 0.
25 THEODAHAD TO JUSTINIAN. Same subject .6 0.
26 Monastery too heavily taxed 1 0.
27 SENATOR. Corn distributions in Liguria & Venetia .9 0.
28 Grant of monopolies 1.2 0.
29 WINUSIAD. Old soldier gets leave to visit baths of Bormio 1.7 0.
30 HONORIUS. Brazen elephants in Via Sacra. Natural history of elephant 2 0.
31 KING WITIGIS TO ALL GOTHS. On his elevation 2.1 0.
32 JUSTINIAN. Overtures for peace 1.8 0.
33 MASTER OF OFFICES (at Constantinople). Sending of embassy 1 0.
34 HIS BISHOPS. Same subject .5 0.
35 PRAEFECT OF THESSALONICA. Same subject .2 0.
11 As Praefectus Praefectus, 1 for Senate
40
37.3 31:05.
Preface 2.6 0.
1 TO SENATE. On his promotion to Praefecture. Praises of Amalasuentha. Comparison to Placidia. Relations with East. Expedition against Franks. League with Burgundians. Virtues of Amal Kings 6.4 0.
2  POPE JOHN. Salutations .9 0.
3 DIVERS BISHOPS. same 1.3 0.
4 AMBROSIUS (HIS DEPUTY). Functions of Praefect's Deputy 1.2 0.
5 SAME. Grain distributions for Rome 1.4 0.
6 JOANNES. Functions of Cancellarius 1.3 0.
7 JUDGES OF PROVINCES. Duties of tax-collectors O 1.6 0.
8 EDICT PUBLISHED THROUGH PROVINCES. Announcement of Cassiodorus' principles of administration 2.3 0.
9 TO JUDGES OF PROVINCES. Exhortation to govern in conformity with Edict 1.5 0.
10 BEATUS. Davus invalided to Mons Lactarius. milk-cure for consumption 1.4 0.
11 EDICT. Concerning prices to be maintained at Ravenna .6 0.
12 Concerning prices along Flaminian Way .6 0.
13 SENATE TO EMPEROR JUSTINIAN. Supplications of the Senate 2.3 0.
14 GAUDIOSUS. Praises of Como. Relief of its inhabitants 1.4 0.
15 LIGURIANS. Relief of their necessities .9 0.
16 SAME. Oppressions practised on them to be remedied .7 0.
17 PRINCEPS(?). Promotions in Official Staff of Praetorian Praefect .6 0.
18 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
19 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
20 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
21 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
22 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
23 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
24 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
25 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
26 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
27 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
28 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
29 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
30 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
31 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
32 VARIOUS promotions .1 0.
33 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
34 VARIOUS promotions .2 0.
35 VARIOUS promotions .7 0.
36 ANAT(H)OLIUS. Retirement of a Cornicularius on superannuation allowance justified on astronomical grounds 1.6 0.
37 LUCINUS. Payment of retiring Primiscrinius .8 0.
38 JOANNES. Praises of paper 1.3 0.
39 VITALIAN. Payment of commuted cattle-tax 1.4 0.
40 INDULGENCE [TO PRISONERS ON SOME GREAT FESTIVAL OF THE CHURCH, PROBABLY EASTER]. General Amnesty 1.9 0.
1 VARIOUS CANCELLARII OF PROVINCES. General instructions 1.2 0.
2 ALL JUDGES OF PROVINCES. General instructions to Provincial Governors 1.6 0.
3 SAJONES ASSIGNED TO CANCELLARII. General instructions 1.1 0.
4 CANONICARIUS OF VENETIAE. Praise of _Acinaticium 2 0.
5 VALERIAN. Measures for relief of Lucania & Bruttii 2.2 0.
6 ALL SUBORDINATE GOVERNORS OF PRAEFECTURE. General instructions .7 0.
7 TAX-COLLECTOR OF VENETIAN PROVINCE. Remission of taxes on account of invasion by Suevi .9 0.
8 CONSULARIS OF PROVINCE OF LIGURIA. Permission to pay taxes direct to Royal Treasury .8 0.
9 PASCHASIUS. Claim of an African to succeed to estate of intestate countryman 1.6 0.
10 DIVERS CANCELLARII. Taxes to be punctually enforced .8 0.
11 PETER, DISTRIBUTOR OF RELISHES. Their due distribution 1.1 0.
12 ANASTASIUS. Praise of cheese & wine of Bruttii 1.2 0.
13 EDICT. Frauds committed by revenue-officers on Churches 1.2 0.
14 ANASTASIUS. Plea for gentle treatment of citizens of Rhegium 1.6 0.
15 MAXIMUS. Praises of author's birthplace, Scyllacium 3.2 0.
16 REVENUE OFFICER. Payment of Trina Illatio .9 0.
17 JOHN, SILIQUATARIUS OF RAVENNA. Defence of city .9 0.
18 CONSTANTIAN. Repair of Flaminian Way 1.3 0.
19 MAXIMUS. Bridge of boats across Tiber 1 0.
20 THOMAS & PETER. Sacred vessels mortgaged by Pope Agapetus to be restored to Papal See 1.3 0.
21 DEUSDEDIT. Duties of a Scribe 1.5 0.
22 PROVINCIALS OF ISTRIA. Requisition from Province of Istria 1.9 0.
23 LAURENTIUS. Same subject .7 0.
24 TRIBUNES OF MARITIME POPULATION. First historical notice of Venice 2.7 0.
25 AMBROSIUS, HIS DEPUTY. Famine in Italy 2.1 0.
26 PAULUS. Remission of taxes in consequence of famine .9 0.
27 DATIUS. Relief of famine-stricken citizens of Ticinum, &c. 2.3 0.
28 EDICT [ADDRESSED TO LIGURIANS]. Relief of inhabitants 3.9 0.
     
Introduction.

The interest of the life of Cassiodorus is derived from his position rather than from his character. He was a statesman of considerable sagacity and of unblemished honour, a well-read scholar, and a devout Christian; but he was apt to crouch before the possessors of power however unworthy, and in the whole of his long and eventful life we never find him playing a part which can be called heroic.

His position, however, which was in more senses than one that of a borderer between two worlds, gives to the study of his writings an exceptional value. Born a few years after the overthrow of the Western Empire, a Roman noble by his ancestry, a rhetorician-philosopher by his training, he became what we should call the Prime Minister of the Ostrogothic King Theodoric; he toiled with his master at the construction of the new state, which was to unite the vigour of Germany and the culture of Rome; for a generation he saw this edifice stand, and when it fell beneath the blows of Belisarius he retired, perhaps well-nigh broken-hearted, from the political arena. The writings of such a man could hardly fail, at any rate they do not fail, to give us many interesting glimpses into the political life both of the Romans and the Barbarians. It is true that they throw more light backwards than forwards, that they teach us far more about the constitution of the Roman Empire than they do about the Teutonic customs from whence in due time Feudalism was to be born. Still, they do often illustrate these Teutonic usages; and when we remember that the writer to whom after Tacitus we are most deeply indebted for our knowledge of Teutonic antiquity, Jordanes, professedly compiled his ill-written pamphlet from the Twelve Books of the Gothic History of Cassiodorus, we see that indirectly his contribution to the history of the German factor in European civilisation is a most important one.

Thus then, as has been already said, Cassiodorus stood on the confines of two worlds, the Ancient and the Modern; indeed it is a noteworthy fact that the very word _modernus_ occurs for the first time with any frequency in his writings. Or, if the ever-shifting boundary between Ancient and Modern be drawn elsewhere than in the fifth and sixth centuries, at any rate it is safe to say, that he stood on the boundary of two worlds, the Roman and the Teutonic.

But the statesman who, after spending thirty years at the Court of Theodoric and his daughter, spent thirty-three years more in the monastery which he had himself erected at Squillace, was a borderer in another sense than that already mentioned--a borderer between the two worlds of Politics and Religion; and in this capacity also, as the contemporary, perhaps the friend, certainly the imitator, of St. Benedict, and in some respects the improver upon his method, Cassiodorus largely helped to mould the destinies of mediaeval and therefore of modern Europe.

I shall now proceed to indicate the chief points in the life and career of Cassiodorus. Where, as is generally the case, our information comes from his own correspondence, I shall, to avoid repetition, not do much more than refer the reader to the passage in the following collection, where he will find the information given as nearly as may be in the words of the great Minister himself.

The ancestors of Cassiodorus for three generations, and their public employments, are enumerated for us in the letters (Var. i. 3-4) which in the name of Theodoric he wrote on his father's elevation to the Patriciate. From these letters we learn that--

(1) Cassiodorus, the writer's great grandfather, who held the rank of an Illustris, defended the shores of Sicily and Bruttii from the incursions of the Vandals. This was probably between 430 and 440, and, as we may suppose, towards the end of the life of this statesman, to whom we may conjecturally assign a date from 390 to 460.

(2) His son and namesake, the grandfather of our Cassiodorus, was a Tribune (a military rank nearly corresponding to our 'Colonel') and Notarius under Valentinian III. He enjoyed the friendship of the great Aetius, and was sent with Carpilio the son of that statesman on an embassy to Attila, probably between the years 440 and 450. In this embassy, according to his grandson, he exerted an extraordinary influence over the mind of the Hunnish King. Soon after this he retired to his native Province of Bruttii, where he passed the remainder of his days. We may probably fix the limits of his life from about 420 to 490.

(3) His son, the third Cassiodorus, our author's father, served under Odovacar (therefore between 476 and 492), as Comes Privatarum Rerum and Comes Sacrarum Largitionum. These two offices, one of which nominally involved the care of the domains of the Sovereign and the other the regulation of his private charities, were in fact the two great financial offices of the Empire and of the barbarian royalties which modelled their system upon it. Upon the fall of the throne of Odovacar, Cassiodorus transferred his services to Theodoric, at the beginning of whose reign he acted as Governor (Consularis[1]) of Sicily. In this capacity he showed much tact and skill, and thereby succeeded in reconciling the somewhat suspicious and intractable Sicilians to the rule of their Ostrogothic master. He next administered (as Corrector[2]) his own native Province of 'Bruttii et Lucania[3].' Either in the year 500 or soon after, he received from Theodoric the highest mark of his confidence that the Sovereign could bestow, being raised to the great place of Praetorian Praefect, which still conferred a semi-regal splendour upon its holder, and which possibly under a Barbarian King may have involved yet more participation in the actual work of reigning than it had done under a Roman Emperor.

The Praefecture of this Cassiodorus probably lasted three or four years, and at its close he received the high honour of the Patriciate. We are not able to name the exact date of his retirement from office; but the important point for us is, that while he still held this splendid position his son was first introduced to public life. To that son's history we may now proceed, for we have no further information of importance as to the father's old age or death beyond the intimation (contained in Var. iii. 28) that Theodoric invited him, apparently in vain, to leave his beloved Bruttii and return to the Court of Ravenna.

MAGNUS AURELIUS CASSIODORUS SENATOR was born at Scyllacium (_Squillace_) about the year 480. His name, his birthplace, and his year of birth will each require a short notice.

(1) _Name._ Magnus (not Marcus, as it has been sometimes incorrectly printed) is the author's praenomen. Aurelius, the gentile name, connects him with a large gens, of which Q. Aurelius Memmius Symmachus was one of the most distinguished ornaments. As to the form of the cognomen there is a good deal of diversity of opinion, the majority of German scholars preferring Cassiodor_i_us to Cassiodorus. The argument in favour of the former spelling is derived from the fact that some of the MSS. of his works (not apparently the majority) write the name with the termination _rius_, and that while it is easy to understand how from the genitive form _ri_ a nominative _rus_ might be wrongly inferred instead of the real nominative _rius_, it is not easy to see why the opposite mistake should be made, and _rius_ substituted for the genuine _rus_.

The question will probably be decided one way or the other by the critical edition of the 'Variae' which is to be published among the 'Monumenta Germaniae Historica;' but in the meantime it may be remarked that the correct Greek form of the name as shown by inscriptions appears to be Cassiodo_rus_, and that in a poem of Alcuin's[4] occurs the line

'Cassiodorus item Chrysostomus atque Johannes,'

showing that the termination _rus_ was generally accepted as early as the eighth century. It is therefore to be hoped that this is the form which may finally prevail.

 
1
1 - 1 KING THEODORIC TO EMPEROR ANASTASIUS.

'It behoves us, most clement Emperor, to seek for peace, since there are no causes for anger between us.

'Peace by which the nations profit; Peace the fair mother of all liberal arts, the softener of manners, the replenisher of the generations of mankind. Peace ought certainly to be an object of desire to every kingdom.

'Therefore, most pious of princes, it accords with your power and your glory that we who have already profited by your affection [personally] should seek concord with your Empire. You are the fairest ornament of all realms; you are the healthful defence of the whole world, to which all other rulers rightfully look up with reverence[204], because they know that there is in you something which is unlike all others[205]: we above all, who by Divine help learned in your Republic the art of governing Romans with equity. Our royalty is an imitation of yours, modelled on your good purpose, a copy of the only Empire; and in so far as we follow you do we excel all other nations.

'Often have you exhorted me to love the Senate, to accept cordially the laws of past Emperors, to join together in one all the members of Italy. How can you separate from your august alliance one whose character you thus try to make conformable to your own? There is moreover that noble sentiment, love for the City of Rome, from which two princes, both of whom govern in her name, should never be disjoined.

'We have thought fit therefore to send A and B[206] as ambassadors to your most serene Piety, that Peace, which has been broken, through a variety of causes, may, by the removal of all matters of dispute, be firmly restored between us. For we think you will not suffer that any discord should remain between two Republics, which are declared to have ever formed one body under their ancient princes[207], and which ought not to be joined by a mere sentiment of love, but actively to aid one another with all their powers. Let there be always one will, one purpose in the Roman Kingdom. Therefore, while greeting you with our respectful salutations, we humbly beg that you will not remove from us the high honour of your Mildness's affection[208], which we have a right to hope for if it were never granted to any others.

'The rest of their commission will be verbally conveyed to your Piety by the bearers of these letters[209].'

 
1 - 2 KING THEODORIC TO THEON, VIR SUBLIMIS.

'We are informed by Count Stephen that the work of preparing the purple for the sacred (_i.e._ royal) robes, which was put under your charge, has been interrupted through reprehensible negligence on your part. There must be neglect somewhere, or else the wool with its milk-white hairs would long before now have imbibed the precious quality of the adorable _murex_. If the diver in the waters of Hydruntum[210] had sought for these murex-shells at the proper season, that Neptunian harvest, mixed with an abundant supply of water, would already have generated the flame-bright liquid which dyes the robes that adorn the throne. The colour of that dye is gay[211] with too great beauty; 'tis a blushing obscurity, an ensanguined blackness, which distinguishes the wearer from all others, and makes it impossible for the human race not to know who is the king. It is marvellous that that substance after death should for so long a time exude an amount of gore which one would hardly find flowing from the wounds of a living creature. For even six months after they have been separated from the delights of the sea, these shell-fish are not offensive to the keenest nostrils, as if on purpose that that noble blood might inspire no disgust. Once this dye is imparted to the cloth, it remains there for ever; the tissue may be destroyed sooner than part with it. If the murex has not changed its quality, if the press (torcular) is still there to receive its one vintage, it must be the fault of the labourers that the dye is not forthcoming. What are they doing, all those crowds of sailors, those families of rustics? And you who bear the name of Count, and were exalted high over your fellow-citizens on purpose that you might attend to this very thing, what sacrilegious negligence is this which you are manifesting in reference to the sacred vesture? If you have any care for your own safety come at once with the purple[212], which you have hitherto been accustomed to render up every year. If not, if you think to mock us by delay, we shall send you not a constrainer but an avenger.

'How easy was the discovery of this great branch of manufacture! A dog, keen with hunger, bounding along the Tyrian shore, crunched the shells which were cast up there. The purple gore dyed his jaws with a marvellous colour; and the men who saw it, after the sudden fashion of inventors, conceived the idea of making therewith a noble adornment for their kings. What Tyre is for the East, Hydron[213] is for Italy--the great cloth-factory of Courts, not keeping its old art (merely), but ever transmitting new improvements.'

 
1 - 3 KING THEODORIC TO CASSIODORUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN[214].
Extols in high-flown language the merits of the minister who in the early and troublous days of Theodoric's reign conciliated the wavering affections of the suspicious Sicilians[215], governed them so justly that not even they (addicted as they are, according to Cicero, to grumbling) could complain; then displayed equal rectitude in the government of his own native Province of Bruttii and Lucania (hard as it is to be perfectly just in the government of one's own native place); then administered the Praefecture in such a way as to earn the thanks of all Italy, even the taxes not being felt to be burdensome under his rule, because so justly levied; and now, finally, as a reward for all these services, is raised to the distinguished honour of the Patriciate.

 
1 - 4 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME.
Compliments to the Senate, of which Theodoric wishes to increase the dignity by bestowing honours on its most eminent members.

Recital of the services and good qualities of Cassiodorus[216]:

(_a_) as 'Comes Privatarum;'

(_b_) as 'Comes Sacrarum Largitionum;'

(_c_) as Governor of Provinces.

(General reflections on the importance of a governor being himself a virtuous man).

'Having been trained thus to official life under the preceding King [Odovacar] he came with well-earned praises to our palace.'

(_d_) His eminent career as Praetorian Praefect and modest demeanour therein.

Services of previous members of his family. Fame seems to be always at home among the Cassiodori. They are of noble birth, equally celebrated among orators and warriors, healthy of body, and very tall.

His father, _Cassiodorus_[217], was 'Tribunus et Notarius' under Valentinian III. This last was a great honour, for only men of spotless life were associated with the Imperial 'Secretum.' A friendship, founded on likeness, drew him to the side of Aetius, whose labours for the State he shared.

_Embassy to Attila._ 'With the son of this Aetius, named Carpilio, he was sent on no vain embassy to Attila, the mighty in arms. He looked undaunted on the man before whom the Empire quailed. Calm in conscious strength, he despised all those terrible wrathful faces that scowled around him. He did not hesitate to meet the full force of the invectives of the madman who fancied himself about to grasp the Empire of the world. He found the King insolent; he left him pacified; and so ably did he argue down all his slanderous pretexts for dispute that though the Hun's interest was to quarrel with the richest Empire in the world, he nevertheless condescended to seek its favour. The firmness of the orator roused the fainting courage of his countrymen, and men felt that Rome could not be pronounced defenceless while she was armed with such ambassadors. Thus did he bring back the peace which men had despaired of; and as earnestly as they had prayed for his success, so thankfully did they welcome his return.'

He was offered honours and revenues, but preferred to seek the pleasant retirement of Bruttii in the land which his exertions had freed from the terror of the stranger.

His father, Cassiodorus[218], an 'Illustris,' defended the coasts of Sicily and Bruttii from the Vandals, thus averting from those regions the ruin which afterwards fell upon Rome from the same quarter.

In the East, Heliodorus, a cousin of the Cassiodori, has brilliantly discharged the office of Praefect for eighteen years, as Theodoric himself can testify. Thus the family, conspicuous both in the Eastern and Western World, has two eyes with which it shines with equal brilliancy in each Senate.

Cassiodorus is so wealthy that his herds of horses surpass those of the King, to whom he makes presents of some of them in order to avoid envy. 'Hence it arises that our present candidate [for patrician honours] mounts the armies of the Goths; and having even improved upon his education, generously administers the wealth which he received from his parents.

'Now, Conscript Fathers, welcome and honour the new Patrician, who is so well worthy of a high place among you.'

 
1 - 5 KING THEODORIC TO FLORIANUS, VIR SPECTABILIS.

'Lawsuits must not be dragged on for ever. There must be some possibility of reaching a quiet haven. Wherefore, if the petitioners have rightly informed us that the controversy as to the farm at Mazenes has been decided in due course of law by Count Annas, and there is no reasonable ground for appeal[219], let that sentence be held final and irreversible. We must sometimes save a litigious man from himself, as a good doctor will not allow a patient to take that which is injurious to him.'

 
1 - 6 KING THEODORIC TO AGAPITUS, PRAEFECTUS URBIS.
'I am going to build a great Basilica of Hercules at Ravenna, for I wish my age to match preceding ones in the beauty of its buildings, as it does in the happiness of the lives of my subjects.

'Send me therefore skilful workers in Mosaic'

'Send us from your city some of your most skilful marble-workers, who may join together those pieces which have been exquisitely divided, and, connecting together their different veins of colour, may admirably represent the natural appearance[220]. From Art proceeds this gift, which conquers Nature. And thus the discoloured surface of the marble is woven into the loveliest variety of pictures; the value of the work, now as always, being increased by the minute labour which has to be expended on the production of the Beautiful.'

 
1 - 7 KING THEODORIC TO FELIX, VIR CLARISSIMUS.

This letter will be best understood by a reference to the following pedigree: FELIX = A daughter. NEOTHERIUS PLUTIANUS [a spendthrift]. [a minor, whose guardian is Venantius].

Apparently Felix is accused by Venantius, the guardian of his young brother-in-law Plutianus, of having, on behalf of his wife, made an unfair division of the family property (which had been originally given to the father of these lads by Theodoric, as a reward for his services). In doing this he has availed himself of the spendthrift character of Neotherius, the elder brother, who was probably already of age.

Felix is severely blamed, and ordered to hand over what he has fraudulently appropriated to the official, who is charged with the execution of this mandate.

Both are summoned to the 'Comitatus' of the King, that a fair division may there be made between them.

 
1 - 8 KING THEODORIC TO AMABILIS, THE COLLECTOR (EXSECUTOR).

In reference to this same matter of the wasted property of Plutianus. It appears from this letter that Neotherius has been not merely a spendthrift, but has been actuated by motives of passionate hatred to his younger brother[221]. The King enlarges on his obligation to protect the weak, and orders the officer to see that justice is done according to the representations of Venantius, unless the other side have any counter plea to allege, in which case 'ad nostrum venire deproperet comitatum.'

 
1 - 9 KING THEODORIC TO EUSTORGIUS, BISHOP OF MILAN.
'You will be glad to hear that we are satisfied that the Bishop of Augusta [Turin or Aosta] has been falsely accused of betrayal of his country. He is therefore to be restored to his previous rank. His accusers, as they are themselves of the clerical order, are not punished by us, but sent to your Holiness to be dealt with according to the ecclesiastical tradition.'

 
1 - 10 KING THEODORIC TO BOETIUS[223], VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.
The Horse and Foot Guards[224] seem to have complained that after their severe labours they were not paid in solidi of full weight by the 'Arcarius Praefectorum.'

Cassiodorus gives--

(1) Some sublime reflections in the true Cassiodorian vein on the nature of Arithmetic, by which earth and the heavens are ruled.

(2) Some excellent practical remarks on the wickedness of clipping and depreciating the currency.

The most interesting but most puzzling sentence in this letter is that in which he says that 'the ancients wished that the _solidus_ should consist of 6,000 _denarii_, in order that the golden coin like a golden sun might represent the 6,000 years which are the appointed age of the world.' But how can we reconcile this with any known solidus or any known denarius? The solidus of Constantine (72 to the lb.) was worth about twelve shillings. The reduced denarius of Diocletian was probably worth one penny. At the very lowest (and most improbable) computation it was worth at least a farthing, and even thus one would only get 576 to a solidus. The earlier denarius, worth about eightpence, clearly will not do; and the matter is made more difficult by the fact that Cassiodorus is talking about the ancients (veteres), whereas the solidus was a comparatively modern coin. It seems that either Cassiodorus has some entirely wrong information as to the early currency of Rome, or else that we have not yet got the clue to his meaning.

 
1 - 11 KING THEODORIC TO SERVATUS, DUKE OF THE RAETIAS.
'It is your duty to repress all violence and injustice in the Provinces over which you preside. Maniarius complains that his slaves (mancipia) have been without any cause taken away from him by the _Breones_ [a Raetian tribe dwelling near the pass of the Brenner], who are continuing in peace the habits and maxims of war.

'If this proves to be a true complaint, see that justice is done, and speedily.'

 
1 - 12 KING THEODORIC TO EUGENIUS (OR EUGENITES)[225], VIR ILLUSTRIS, MAGISTER OFFICIORUM.
'It is the glory of our reign to confer office on those who deserve it.

'You are a learned man, and arrived long ago at the dignity of the Quaestorship as a reward for your creditable exertions as an Advocate.

'One office leads to another: the tree of the fasces puts forth fresh fasces; and we therefore have great pleasure in calling you now to the dignity of Magister, bestowing upon you all the privileges which have belonged to your predecessors in that office. Justify our choice by your actions. You know, as one of our counsellors, what our standard of righteousness is. A sort of religious holiness is required from those who hold office under a righteous king[226].'

 
1 - 13 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME.
Announces the elevation of Eugenius (or Eugenites) to the post of Master of the Offices, and recapitulates his past services and character in nearly the same terms as the preceding letter. He is to go from one office to another, 'even as the sun having shone one day, rises in order to shine again on another. Even horses are stimulated to greater speed by the shouts of men. But man is an animal peculiarly fond of approbation. Do you therefore stimulate the new Master to all noble deeds.'

 
1 - 14 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAEPOSITUS.

'We have no objection to grant the petition of the inhabitants of Cathalia (?), that their "Tertiae" shall be collected at the same time as the ordinary tribute. What does it matter under what name the "possessor" pays his contribution, so long as he pays it without deduction? Thus they will get rid of the suspected name of "Tertiae," and our mildness will not be worried by their importunity.'

 
1 - 15 KING THEODORIC TO FESTUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.

'We are glad to see that our good opinion of you is shared by your neighbours, and that the Patrician Agnellus, going to Africa on our business, has chosen you to defend his interests in his absence. No one can give a higher proof of confidence than this. Look well after the trust committed to you. There seems to be a peculiar temptation to neglect the interests of the absent.'

 
1 - 16 KING THEODORIC TO JULIANUS, COMES PATRIMONII [probably 508].
'It is an excellent investment to do a generous thing to our subjects. The Apulian "Conductores" [farmers of the Royal domain] have represented to us with tears that their crops have been burned by hostile invaders [Byzantines?]. We therefore authorise you to deduct at the next Indiction what shall seem the right proportion for these losses from the amount due to us[227]. See, however, that our revenue sustains no unnecessary loss. We are touched by the losses of the suppliants, but we ought on the other hand to share their profits.'

 
1 - 17 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE GOTHIC AND ROMAN INHABITANTS OF DERTONA (TORTONA).
'We have decided that the camp near you shall at once be fortified. It is expedient to execute works of this kind in peace rather than in war.

'The true meaning of _expeditio_ shows that the leader of a military expedition should have an unencumbered mind.

'Do you therefore second our efforts by building good private houses, in which you will be sheltered, while the enemy (whenever he comes) will be in the worst possible quarters[228], and exposed to all the severity of the weather.'

 
1 - 18 KING THEODORIC TO DOMITIANUS AND WILIAS.

'It is right that you, who are administering justice to the nations, should learn and practise it yourselves. We therefore hasten to reply to the question which you have asked [concerning the length of time that is required to bestow a title by prescription]. If any Barbarian usurper have taken possession of a Roman farm since the time when we, through God's grace, crossed the streams of the Isonzo, when first the Empire of Italy received us[229], and if he have no documents of title [sine delegatoris cujusquam pyctacio] to show that he is the rightful holder, then let him without delay restore the property to its former owner. But if he shall be found to have entered upon the property before the aforesaid time, since the principle of the thirty years' prescription comes in, we order that the petition of the plaintiff shall be dropped.

'The assailant, as well as the murderer, of his brother, is to be driven forth from the kingdom, that the serenity of our Commonwealth may not be troubled with any such dark spots.'

 
1 - 19 KING THEODORIC TO SATURNINUS AND VERBUSIUS, VIRI SUBLIMES.

'The _Fiscus_ is to have its rights, but we do not wish to oppress our people. Let moderation be observed in all things.

'When you receive the petition of the Curiales of Adriana, if anyone who is able to pay, stubbornly and impudently refuses to contribute to the _Fiscus Gothorum_, you are to compel him to do so. But let off the really poor man who is unable to contribute.'

 
1 - 20 KING THEODORIC TO ALBINUS AND ALBIENUS, VIRI ILLUSTRES AND PATRICIANS.

'Notwithstanding our greater cares for the Republic, we are willing to provide also for the amusement of our subjects. For it is the strongest possible proof of the success of our labours that the multitude knows itself to be again at leisure[230].

'The petition of the Green party in the circus informs us that they are oppressed, and that the factions of the circus are fatal to public tranquillity. We therefore order you to assume the patronage of the Green party, which our father of glorious memory paid for[231]. So let the spectators be assembled, and let them choose between Helladius and Theodorus which is fittest to be Pantomimist of the Greens, whose salary we will pay.'

 
1 - 21 KING THEODORIC TO MAXIMIAN, VIR ILLUSTRIS; AND ANDREAS, VIR SPECTABILIS.
'If the people of Rome will beautify their City we will help them.

'Institute a strict audit (of which no one need be ashamed) of the money given by us to the different workmen for the beautification of the City. See that we are receiving money's worth for the money spent. If there is embezzlement anywhere, cause the funds so embezzled to be disgorged. We expect the Romans to help from their own resources in this patriotic work, and certainly not to intercept our contributions for the purpose.

'The wandering birds love their own nests; the beasts haste to their own lodgings in the brake; the voluptuous fish, roaming the fields of ocean, returns to its own well-known cavern. How much more should Rome be loved by her children!'

 
1 - 22 KING THEODORIC TO MARCELLUS, VIR SPECTABILIS, ADVOCATUS FISCI.

After some rather vapid praise of the eloquence and good qualities of Marcellus, Theodoric promotes him from the rank of a Private Advocate to that of an _Advocatus Fisci_, and gives him some excellent counsels about not pressing the claims of the Crown too far. 'We shall not enquire how many causes you have gained, but how you have gained them. Let there sometimes be a bad cause for the Fiscus, that the Sovereign may be seen to be good.'

 
1 - 23 KING THEODORIC TO COELIANUS AND AGAPITUS, VIRI ILLUSTRES AND PATRICIANS.
'The concord and harmony of subjects redound to the praise of their prince.

'We desire that Festus and Symmachus (Patricians and Magnifici) should prosecute the causes for action which they say they have against Paulinus (Illustris and Patrician) in your Court. Let Paulinus bring before you any counter-claim which he may assert himself to possess. Let justice be rendered speedily. Show yourselves worthy of this high trust. It is a matter of great moment to end lawsuits between men of such eminence in the State as these.'

 
1 - 24 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE GOTHS.
'To the Goths a hint of war rather than persuasion to the strife is needed, since a warlike race such as ours delights to prove its courage. In truth, he shuns no labour who hungers for the renown of valour. Therefore with the help of God, whose blessing alone brings prosperity, we design to send our army to the Gauls for the common benefit of all, that you may have an opportunity of promotion, and we the power of testing your merits; for in time of peace the courage which we admire lies hidden, and when men have no chance of showing what is in them, their relative merits are concealed. We have therefore given our Sajo[232], Nandius, instructions to warn you that, on the eighth day before the kalends of next July, you move forward to the campaign in the name of God, sufficiently equipped, according to your old custom, with horses, arms, and every requisite for war. Thus will ye at the same time show that the old valour of your sires yet dwells in your hearts, and also successfully perform your King's command. Bring forth your young men for the discipline of Mars. Let them see you do deeds which they may love to tell of to their children. For an art not learned in youth is an art missing in our riper years. The very hawk, whose food is plunder, thrusts her still weak and tender young ones out of the nest, that they may not become accustomed to soft repose. She strikes the lingerers with her wings; she forces her callow young to fly, that they may prove to be such in the future as her maternal fondness can be proud of. Do you therefore, lofty by nature, and stimulated yet more by the love of fame, study to leave such sons behind you as your fathers have left in leaving you.'

 
1 - 25 KING THEODORIC TO SABINIANUS, VIR SPECTABILIS.
'It is important to preserve as well as to create. We are earnestly anxious to keep the walls of Rome in good repair, and have therefore ordered the Lucrine port[233] to furnish 25,000 tiles annually for this purpose. See that this is done, that the cavities which have been formed by the fall of stones may be roofed over with tiles, and so preserved, and that thus we may deserve the thanks of ancient kings, to whose works we have given immortal youth.'

 
1 - 26 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAEPOSITUS.
In the time of Cassiodorus the Patrician (a man of tried integrity and pure fidelity[234]), a grant of freedom from taxation[235] was made to the Church of Vercelli. Since that time other property has been conveyed to the same Church, apparently by a soldier. An attempt is made to represent this after-acquired property as also tax-free. 'No,' says the King. 'It would be very wrong in us to recall our gift; but it is equally wrong in you to try to stretch it to something which it never included. Private persons must not make grants to the injury of our treasury. Tribute belongs to the purple, not to the military cloak[236]. Your newly acquired possessions must pay taxes along with those of other owners.'

 
1 - 27 KING THEODORIC TO SPECIOSUS.

'If we are moderating under our laws the character of foreign nations, if the Roman law is supreme over all that is in alliance with Italy, how much more doth it become the Senate of the seat of civilisation itself to have a surpassing reverence for law, that by the example of their moderation the beauty of their dignities may shine forth more eminently. For where shall we look for moderation, if violence stains Patricians? The Green party complain that they have been truculently assaulted by the Patrician Theodoric and the "Illustris and Consul Importunus," and that one life has been lost in the fray. We wish the matter to be at once brought before the Illustres Coelianus and Agapitus and examined into by them[237].

'As to their counter-complaints of rudeness against the mob, you must distinguish between deliberate insolence and the licence of the theatre. Who expects seriousness of character at the spectacles? It is not exactly a congregation of Catos that comes together at the circus. The place excuses some excesses. And besides, it is the _beaten_ party which vents its rage in insulting cries. Do not let the Patricians complain of clamour that is really the result of a victory for their own side, which they greatly desired.'

 
1 - 28 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE GOTHS AND ROMANS.
'Most worthy of Royal attention is the rebuilding of ancient cities, an adornment in time of peace, a precaution for time of war.

'Therefore, if anyone have in his fields stones suitable for the building of the walls, let him cheerfully and promptly produce them. Even though he should be paid at a low rate, he will have his reward as a member of the community, which will benefit thereby.'

 
1 - 29 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE LUCRISTANI (LUSTRIANI?) ON THE RIVER SONTIUS (ISONZO).
'The post (_Cursus Publicus_) is evidently an institution of great public utility, tending to the rapid promulgation of our decrees.

'Care must therefore be taken that the horses are not allowed to get out of condition, lest they break down under their work, and lest the journey, which should be rapid, become tediously slow.

'Also any lands formerly appropriated to the _mutationes_ [places for changing horses] which have fallen into private hands must be reclaimed for the public service, the owners being sufficiently indemnified for their loss.'

 
1 - 30 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: On the injury to public peace arising from the Circus rivalries.
The Senators are exhorted not to allow their menials to embroil themselves with the populace, and thus bring their good name into disgrace. Any slave accused of the murder of a free-born citizen is to be at once given up, under penalty of a fine of 10 lbs. of gold (£400), and the King's severe displeasure for the master who disobeys this command.

'And do not you, oh Senators, be too severe in marking every idle word which the mob may utter amidst the general rejoicing. If there is any insult which requires notice, bring it before the "Praefectus Urbis"--a far better and safer course than taking the law into your own hands.'

 
1 - 31 KING THEODORIC TO THE ROMAN PEOPLE.
Gives similar good advice to that contained in the previous letter to the Senate.

'The Circus, in which the King spends so much money, is meant to be for public delight, not for stirring up wrath. Instead of uttering howls and insults like other nations [the populace of Byzantium?], whom they have despised for doing so, let them tune their voices, so that their applause shall sound like the notes of some vast organ, and even the brute creation delight to hear it.

'Anyone uttering outrageous reproaches against any Senator will be dealt with by the Praefectus Urbis.'

 
1 - 32 KING THEODORIC TO AGAPITUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, PRAEFECTUS URBIS.
'The ruler of the city ought to keep the peace, and justify my choice of him. Your highest praise is a quiet people.

'We have issued our "oracles" to the "amplissimus ordo" (Senate) and to the people, that the custom of insulting persons in the Circus is to be put under some restraint; on the other hand, any Senator who shall be provoked to kill a free-born person shall pay a fine. The games are meant to make people happy, not to stir them up to deadly rage. Helladius[238] is to come forth into the midst and afford the people pleasure [as a pantomimist], and he is to receive his monthly allowance (menstruum) with the other actors of the Green Faction. His partisans are to be allowed to sit where they please.'

 
1 - 33 KING THEODORIC TO AGAPITUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, PRAEFECTUS URBIS.
'Our Serenity is not going to change the arrangements which we have once made for the public good. We told Albinus and Albienus[239] to choose the most fitting person they could find as Pantomimist of the Greens. They have done so [choosing probably Helladius]. He shall have his monthly allowance, and let there be peace.'

 
1 - 34 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAEPOSITUS.

'It should be only the surplus of the crops of any Province, beyond what is needed for the supply of its own wants, that should be exported. Station persons in the harbours to see that foreign ships do not take away produce to foreign shores until the Public Providers[240] have got all that they require.'

 
1 - 35 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAEPOSITUS.
'This extraordinarily dry season having ruined the hopes of our harvest, it is more than ever necessary that the produce should be brought forward promptly. We are therefore exceedingly annoyed at finding that the crops which are generally sent forward by your Chancellor from the coasts of Calabria and Apulia in summer have not yet arrived, though it is near autumn and the time is at hand when the sun, entering the southern signs (which are all named from showers), will send us storm and tempest.

'What are you waiting for? Why are your ships not spreading their sails to the breeze? With a favourable wind and with bending oarsmen, are you perhaps delayed by the _echeneis_ (Remora, or sucking-fish)? or by the shell-fish of the Indian Ocean? or by the torpedo, whose touch paralyses the hand? No; the echeneis in this case is entangling venality; the bites of the shell-fish, insatiable avarice; the torpedo, fraudulent pretence.

'The merchants are making delays in order that they may seem to have fallen on adverse weather.

'Let your Magnitude put all this to rights promptly, otherwise our famine will be imputed, not to bad seasons, but to negligence[241].'

 
1 - 36 KING THEODORIC TO THERIOLUS, VIR SPECTABILIS.
'We wish you to take the place of the late Benedictus in the city of Pedon.

'As we never forget the services of the dead, we wish you to undertake officially the guardianship of the sons of the said Benedictus.

'We always pay back to our faithful servants more than we have received from them, and thus we do not go on the principle "equality is equity," because we think it just to make them _more_ than an equal recompence.'

 
1 - 37 KING THEODORIC TO CRISPIANUS.
'Murder is abominable, but it is right to take into account the circumstances which may have provoked to homicide. If the slain man was trying to violate the rights of wedlock, his blood be on his own head. For even brute beasts vindicate their conjugal rights by force: how much more man, who is so deeply dishonoured by the adulterer!

'Therefore, if it be true that the man whom you slew had wronged you as a husband, we do not agree to the punishment of exile which has been inflicted upon you. Nor will we uphold the action of the _Vicarius_ or of his _Officium_, who, as you say, have impounded the money paid by your _fidei-jussor_ (guarantor) Agnellus. Also, we will protect you against the hostile assaults of Candax [next of kin to the murdered man?] in future. But your allegation as to the provocation must be fully established by legal process.'

 
1 - 38 KING THEODORIC TO BAION, A SENATOR[242].
'We are told that you are keeping in your own hands the administration of the property of your young nephew [or grandson] Hilarius against his will, and not for his good, but yours. Restore it at once. Let him dispose of it as he likes. He seems to be quite able to enter upon the lordship of his own. The eagle feeds her callow young with food which she has procured for them, till their wings grow. Then, when their flight is strong and their nails sharp, she trains them to strike their own prey. So with our young Goths: when they are fit for soldiership we cannot bear that they should be deemed incapable of managing their own concerns. "To the Goths valour makes full age. And he who is strong enough to stab his enemy to the heart should be allowed to vindicate himself from every accusation of incapacity."'

 
1 - 39 KING THEODORIC TO FESTUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.
'We are always delighted to grant just requests.

'Filagrius (Vir Spectabilis), who has been long absent from his home on our business, seeks to return to Syracuse, but at the same time asks that his brother's sons may be kept for their education's sake at Rome. Do you attend to this petition, and do not let the lads go till we send you a second order to that effect. No one ought to murmur at being detained in Rome, which is everyone's country, the fruitful mother of eloquence, the wide temple of all virtues. Ulysses would very likely never have become famous if he had lingered on at home; but Homer's noble poem most chiefly proclaims his wisdom in this fact, that he roamed among many cities and nations.'

 
1 - 40 KING THEODORIC TO ASSUIN (OR ASSIUS), VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES.
'War needs rehearsal and preparation. Therefore let your Illustrious Sublimity provide the inhabitants of Salona with arms, and let them practise themselves in the use of them; for the surest safeguard of the Republic is an armed defender.'

The necessity of drill and practice is shown by the early combats of bullocks, the play-huntings of puppies, the necessity of first kindling a fire with very little sticks, and so forth.

 
1 - 41 KING THEODORIC TO AGAPITUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, PRAEFECTUS URBIS.
'The dignity of the Senate makes it necessary to be unusually careful who is admitted into that body. Let other orders receive middling men: the Senate must receive none but those who are of proved excellence.

'Therefore let your Illustrious Magnificence cause those enquiries to be made concerning Faustus, the grown-up son of the Illustrious Faustus, which the Senate hath ordered to be made concerning all persons who are to be enrolled in its council[243]. In thus confirming and ratifying the proceedings of the Senate we are in no degree trenching on the accustomed authority of that sacred order.'

 
1 - 42 KING THEODORIC TO ARTEMIDORUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN [509 OR 524].
'We are especially bound to reward merit. Everyone who does us a service makes a very good investment. You have long had what was formerly considered more precious than great dignity--near access to our person. Much as we loved you, we somewhat retarded your advance in order that you might be the more richly adorned with all virtues when you came to honour. Your birthplace, your lineage, your merit, all declare you worthy of the promotion which we now bestow upon you, declaring you for this third Indiction[244] _Praefectus Urbis_. You will thus have the function of presiding over the Senate, a far higher office than that of ruling the Palace or arranging private houses. The value of the object committed to a person's care increases the dignity of the post. It is much more honourable to be caretaker of a diadem than of a wine-cellar. Judge of our esteem for you by the preciousness of the body over which we are thus calling you to preside.'

 
1 - 43 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Announcing the elevation of Artemidorus to the post of Praefectus Urbis.
'Artemidorus, though entitled from his relationship to the Emperor Zeno to expect great promotion at the Court of Constantinople, has preferred to share the fortunes and attach himself to the person of Theodoric, who has often been refreshed after the cares of State by an hour of his charming converse. Though he might have aspired to the highest dignities of the Court, he has hitherto been satisfied with the comparatively humble post of Superintendent of the Public Spectacles [as Tribunus Voluptatum?]. Now, as Praefectus Urbis, he is to preside over and become a member of your body. Welcome him.'

 
1 - 44 KING THEODORIC TO THE PEOPLE OF ROME: same subject
Rebukes the commonalty sharply for their recent disturbances, which defile with illicit seditions the blessings of peace, earned under God's blessing by their Prince. The newly-appointed Praefectus Urbanus, Artemidorus, long devoted to the service of Theodoric, will attest the innocence of the good, and sharply punish the errors of the bad, both by his own inherent prerogative and by a special commission entrusted to him for that purpose by the King.

 
1 - 45 KING THEODORIC TO BOETIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.
'It is important to oblige our royal neighbours even in trifles, for none can tell what great matters may be aided thereby. Often what arms cannot obtain the offices of kindness bring to pass. Thus let even our unbending be for the benefit of the Republic. For our object in seeking pleasure is that we may thereby discharge the serious duties of life.

'The Lord of the Burgundians has earnestly requested that we would send him a clock which is regulated by water flowing under a modulus, and one which is marked by embracing the illumination of the immense sun[245].'

[Footnote 245: An unintelligible translation doubtless, but is the original clearer? 'Burgundionum dominus a nobis magnopere postulavit ut horologium quod aquis sub modulo fluentibus temperatur et quod solis immensi comprehensa illuminatione distinguitur ... ei transmittere deberemus.' It is pretty clear that the first request of the Burgundian King was for a clepsydra of some kind. The second must be for some kind of sundial, but the description is very obscure.]

[I transcribe, and do not attempt to translate, the further description of the two machines, the order of which is now changed.]

'_Primum_ sit, ubi stylus diei index, per umbram exiguam horas consuevit ostendere. Radius itaque immobilis, et parvus, peragens quod tam miranda magnitudo solis discurrit, et fugam solis aequiparat quod modum semper ignorat. [This must be the sundial.] Inviderent talibus, si astra sentirent: et meatum suum fortasse deflecterent, ne tali ludibrio subjacerent. Ubi est illud horarum de lumine venientium singulare miraculum, si has et umbra demonstrat? Ubi praedicabilis indefecta roratio, si hoc et metalla peragunt, quae situ perpetuo continentur? O artis inaestimabilis virtus quae dum se dicit ludere, naturae praevalet secreta vulgare.

'_Secundum_ sit [the clepsydra] ubi praeter solis radios hora dignoscitur, noctes in partes dividens: quod ut nihil deberet astris, rationem coeli ad aquarum potius fluenta convertit, quorum motibus ostendit, quod coelum volvitur; et audaci praesumptione concepta, ars elementis confert quod originis conditio denegavit.'

'It will be a great gain to us that the Burgundians should daily look upon something sent by us which will appear to them little short of miraculous. Exert yourself therefore, oh Boetius, to get this thing put in hand. You have thoroughly imbued yourself with Greek philosophy[246]. You have translated Pythagoras the musician, Ptolemy the astronomer, Nicomachus the arithmetician, Euclid the geometer, Plato the theologian, Aristotle the logician, and have given back the mechanician Archimedes to his own Sicilian countrymen (who now speak Latin). You know the whole science of Mathematics, and the marvels wrought thereby. A machine [perhaps something like a modern orrery] has been made to exhibit the courses of the planets and the causes of eclipses. What a wonderful art is Mechanics! The mechanician, if we may say so, is almost Nature's comrade, opening her secrets, changing her manifestations, sporting with miracles, feigning so beautifully, that what we know to be an illusion is accepted by us as truth.'

 
1 - 46 KING THEODORIC TO GUNDIBAD [SIC], KING OF THE BURGUNDIANS.
Sends the two clocks, or rather perhaps the celestial globe and the water-clock.

'Have therefore in your country what you have often seen in Rome. It is right that we should send you presents, because you are connected with us by affinity. It is said that under you "Burgundia" looks into the most subtle things, and praises the discoveries of the ancients. Through you she lays aside her "Gentile" (barbarous) nature, and imitating the prudence of her King, rightly desires to possess the inventions of sages. Let her arrange her daily actions by the movements of God's great lights; let her nicely adjust the moments of each hour. In mere confusion passes the order of life when this accurate division of time is unknown. Men are like the beasts, if they only know the passage of the hours by the pangs of hunger, and have no greater certainty as to the flight of time than such as is afforded them by their bellies. For certainty is undoubtedly meant to be entwined in human actions.'

 
2 In Name of Theodoric.
2 - 1 KING THEODORIC TO ANASTASIUS, MOST PIOUS EMPEROR. A.D. 511.
'By excellent ordinance of the ancients the year is named from the Consul. Let the happy year take its title from our new Consul, _Felix_ [Consul with Secundinus, A.D. 511[247]].

'It is most suitable that Rome should gather back her children to her bosom, and in her venerable Senate should enrol a son of Gaul.

'Felix showed his excellent disposition first in this, that while still a young man he hastened to "the native land of all the virtues" [Rome]. Success followed his choice; we promoted him as he deserved. While still a young man, deprived of his father's care, he showed the rare gift of continence; he subdued avarice, the enemy of wisdom; he despised the blandishments of vice; he trampled under foot the vanities of pride.

'We have now determined to reward him with the Consulship. Do you who can with indiscriminate pleasure rejoice in both the blessings of the Republic [in the Consuls of the East and West] join your favouring vote. He who is worthy of so high an office as the Consulship may well be chosen by the judgment of both' [Emperor and King].

 
2 - 2KING THEODORIC TO FELIX, VIR ILLUSTRIS, CONSUL ORDINARIUS, A.D. 511 (4TH OF THE INDICTION).

An address on his elevation to the Consulship, touching on nearly the same topics as the preceding.

Theodoric delights in bestowing larger favours on those whom he has once honoured [a favourite topic with Cassiodorus].

Felix has come back from Gaul to the old fatherland[248]. Thus the Consulship has returned to a Transalpine family, and green laurels are seen on a brown stock.

Felix has shown an early maturity of character. He has made a wise use of his father's wealth. The honour which other men often acquire by prodigality he has acquired by saving. Cassiodorus evidently has a little fear that the new Consul may carry his parsimony too far, and tells him that this office of the Consulship is one in which liberality, almost extravagance, earns praise[249]; in which it is a kind of virtue not to love one's own possessions; and in which one gains in good opinion all that one loses in wealth.

'See the sacred City all white with your _vota_ (?). See yourself borne upon the shoulders of all, and your name flitting through their mouths, and manifest yourself such that you may be deemed worthy of your race, worthy of the City, worthy of our choice, worthy of the Consular _trabea_.'

 
2 - 3 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE. A.D. 511.

Recommends Felix for the Consulship, going over again the topics mentioned in the two last letters. It appears that it was the father of Felix who emerged, after a temporary eclipse of the family fortunes, and then showed himself 'the Cato of our times, abstaining from vice himself, and forming the characters of others; imbued also with all Greek philosophy, he glutted himself with the honey of the Cecropian doctrine.'

Mention is made of the Consulship of an earlier Felix, A.D. 428, the happy renown of which still lingered in the memories of men.

The young Felix is praised for the qualities described in the two previous letters, and also for his power of conciliating the friendship of older men, especially the excellent Patrician Paulinus.

 
2 - 4 KING THEODORIC TO ECDICIUS (OR BENEDICTUS), VIR HONESTUS.

'We wish always to observe long-established rules in fiscal matters, the best guarantee against extortion. Therefore, whatever dues in the way of _Siliquaticum_ appertained to Antiochus are now transferred to you by the present authority, and the Sajo is charged to support your claims herein; only the contention must not be mixed up with any private matters of your own.'

 
2 - 5 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAEPOSITUS.

'We are always generous, and sometimes out of clemency we bestow our gifts on persons who have no claim upon us. How much more fitting is it then that the servants of the State should receive our gifts promptly! Wherefore, pray let your Magnificence see to it that the sixty soldiers who are keeping guard in the fastnesses of Aosta receive their _annonae_ without delay. Think what a life of hardship the soldier leads in those frontier forts for the general peace, thus, as at the gate of the Province, shutting out the entry of the barbarous nations. He must be ever on the alert who seeks to keep out the Barbarians. For fear alone checks these men, whom honour will not keep back.'

 
2 - 6 KING THEODORIC TO AGAPITUS, ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.

'We have decided to send you on an embassy to the East (Constantinople). Every embassy requires a prudent man, but here there is need of especial prudence, because you will have to dispute against the most subtle persons--artificers of words, who think they can foresee every possible answer to their arguments. Do your best therefore to justify the opinion which I formed of you before full trial of your powers.'

 
2 - 7 KING THEODORIC TO SURA (OR SUNA), ILLUSTRIS AND COMES.
'Let nothing lie useless which may redound to the beauty of the City. Let your Illustrious Magnificence therefore cause the blocks of marble which are everywhere lying about in ruins to be wrought up into the walls by the hands of the workmen whom I send herewith. Only take care to use only those stones which have really fallen from public buildings, as we do not wish to appropriate private property, even for the glorification of the City.'

 
2 - 8 KING THEODORIC TO BISHOP SEVERUS, VIR VENERABILIS.
'None is more suitable than a member of the Priesthood to perform acts of justice towards his flock.

'We therefore send your Holiness, by Montanarius, 1,500 solidi (£900), for distribution among the Provincials, according to the amount of damage which each one has sustained this year by the passage of our army. See that the distribution is made systematically--not at random--so that it may reach the right persons.'

 
2 - 9 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAEPOSITUS.
[Sidenote: Allowance to a retired charioteer.]

'We always enjoy being generous. Compassion is the one virtue to which all other virtues may honourably give way. Long ago we made the charioteer Sabinus a monthly allowance of a solidus [twelve shillings]. Now, as we learn from Histrius [or Historius] that this former servant of the public pleasures is afflicted with the most melancholy poverty, we have pleasure in adding _another_ solidus to his monthly allowance. We are never so well pleased as when the accounts of our expenditure show these items of charitable disbursement.'

 
2 - 10 KING THEODORIC TO SPECIOSUS, VIR DEVOTUS, COMITIACUS [OFFICER OF THE COURT].
'The laws guarding the sanctity of the marriage bed[250] must be carefully upheld.

'Agapita[251] has explained to us that she was tempted away from her husband by seducers, who promised to procure his death. From the time of her leaving his company let all revenues which came to her under the marriage contract (invalidated by her unfaithfulness) be given up by her wrongful detainers[252] without any delay. It is too absurd that men who ought to be severely punished for their wrong-doing should even seek to make a profit out of it.'

 
2 - 11 KING THEODORIC TO PROVINUS (PROBINUS?), ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.
[Refers to the same business of Agapita, who seems to have been a woman of feeble intellect as well as an unfaithful wife.] The petition of her husband Basilius (vir Spectabilis) sets forth that, influenced by seducers, and from the levity so natural to woman, she for no good reason quitted her own home. Her own petition confirms this; and she states that, while taking refuge within the precincts of the Church, she by deed of gift bestowed on Provinus the 'Casa Areciretina,' a most preposterous gift from a poor woman to a rich man; from one whose reputation was gone to a chaste man; from a half-crazy creature to one who knew fully what he was about. This gift Agapita [and Basilius] now seek to annul. Provinus is exhorted at once to throw up a possession which cannot possibly bring him any credit, and the loss of which has brought the poor woman to destitution. Alienation of property should be the act of a person having 'solidum judicium,' which this poor creature evidently had not, or she would not have left her husband causelessly.

'This is the second time of writing. Let there be no further delay in complying.'

 
2 - 12 KING THEODORIC TO THE COUNT OF THE SILIQUATARII (CUSTOMS OFFICERS), AND TO HIM WHO HAS THE CARE OF THE HARBOUR (OF PORTUS?).
'Italy ought to enjoy her own products, and it is monstrous that anything which she produces should be wanting to her own children.

'Therefore let no lard be exported to foreign parts, but let it by God's grace be all kept for consumption at home.

'Now take care not to incur the slightest blame in this matter. It is a very serious fault even in trifles to disobey orders. Sin consists in quality, not in quantity; and injustice cannot be measured. A command, if it be despised in one part, is violated in the whole.'

 
2 - 13 KING THEODORIC TO THE SAJO[253] FRUINARITH.
'We are always especially touched by the prayers of petitioners who complain that they are forced to pay unjustly. Ulpianus in his lamentable petition informs us that on the request of Venantius he bound himself as a guarantor (fidei jussionis vinculo) to pay over to the public Treasury at the time of his administration 400 solidi (£240). With the presumption of a truculent rustic Venantius despised his own promise, and Ulpianus has therefore been burdened with payment of the money. We therefore order that Venantius, who has been accused of many other crimes besides this, shall be summoned before you, and if found to be legally liable, shall be at once, and sharply, compelled to fulfil his promise.'

 
2 - 14 KING THEODORIC TO SYMMACHUS, PATRICIAN.

'Parricide is the most terrible and unnatural of crimes. Even the cubs of wild beasts follow their sires; the offshoot of the vine serves the parent stem: shall man war against him who gave him being? It is for our little ones that we lay up wealth. Shall we not earn the love of those for whom we would willingly incur death itself? The young stork, that harbinger of spring, gives a signal example of filial piety, warming and feeding its aged parents in the moulting season till they have recovered their strength, and thus repaying the good offices received in its earlier years. So too, when the partridge, which is wont to hatch the young of other birds, takes her adopted brood forth into the fields, if these hear the cry of their genuine mother they run to her, leaving the partridge forsaken.

'Wherefore, if Romulus[254] have fouled the Roman name by laying violent hands on his father Martinus, we look to your justice (we chose you because we knew you would not spare the cruel) to inflict on him legitimate revenge.'

 
2 - 15 KING THEODORIC TO VENANTIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS.
'We always like to promote to office the sons of distinguished fathers. We therefore bestow on you the honour of Comes Domesticorum (Comitiva Vacans), in memory of your glorious father. He held at the same time the Praefecture [of Italy] and the command of the army, so that neither the Provinces lacked his ordering, nor did his wise care for the army fail. All was mastered by his skilled and indefatigable prudence; he inclined the manners of the Barbarians to peace, and governed so that all were satisfied with our rule.

'You are a zealous student of literature, illustrious by birth and eloquent by education. Go on as you have begun, and show yourself worthy of our choice.'

 
2 - 16 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME.
This letter adds a little to the information contained in the preceding one, as to the career of Liberius, father of Venantius.

Liberius was a faithful servant of Odovacar, who adhered to his master to the last. 'He awaited incorruptly the Divine judgments, nor did he allow himself to seek a new King till he had first lost his old one. On the overthrow of his lord he was bowed by no terror; he bore unmoved the ruin of his Prince; nor did the revolution, at which even the proud hearts of the Barbarians trembled[255], avail to move him from his calm.

'Prudently did he follow the common fortunes, in order that while fixedly bearing the Divine judgments he might with the more approbation find the Divine favour. We approved the faith of the man; he came over in sadness to our allegiance as one who being overcome changes his mind, not like one who has contrived [treacherously] that he should be conquered. We made him Praefectus Praetorio. He administered the finances admirably. By his economical management we felt the increased returns, while you knew nothing of added tributes.

'We especially like to remember how in the assignment of the [Gothic] Thirds (in Tertiarum deputatione) he joined both the possessions and the hearts of Goths and Romans alike. For whereas men are wont to come into collision on account of their being neighbours, with these men the common holding of their farms proved in practice a reason for concord. Thus it has happened that while the two nations have been living in common they have concurred in the same desires. Lo! a new fact, and one wholly laudable. The friendship of the lords has been joined with the division of the soil; amity has grown out of the loss of the Provincials, and by the land a defender has been gained whose occupation of part guarantees the quiet enjoyment of the whole. One law includes them: one equal administration rules them: for it is necessary that sweet affection should grow between those who always keep the boundaries which have been allotted them.

'All this the Roman Republic owes to Liberius, who to two such illustrious nations has imparted sentiments of mutual affection. See to it, Conscript Fathers, that his offspring does not go unrewarded.'

 
2 - 17 TO THE POSSESSORS, DEFENSORS, AND CURIALS[256] OF THE CITY OF TRIDENTUM (TRIENT).
'We do not wish to be generous at the expense of others, and we therefore declare that the _Sors_ which in our generosity we have bestowed on Butilianus the Presbyter, is not to be reckoned in to the tax calculations; but as many solidi as are comprehended in that gift, so many are you to be relieved from, in the contribution of "Tertiae."'

 
2 - 18 KING THEODORIC TO BISHOP GUDILA.
An interesting but rather obscure letter on the condition of _Curiales_.

Apparently some ecclesiastics were claiming as slaves some men whom the Curia of Sarsena (?) asserted to be fellow-curials of their own, whom they therefore wanted to assist them in performing curial obligations.

Cassiodorus argues that as the 'Sors nascendi' prevented the Curialis from rising to the higher honours of the State, it certainly ought also to prevent him from sinking into slavery[257]. 'Therefore we advise you to look well to your facts, and see whether these men are not justly claimed as Curials, in which case the Church should give them up before the matter comes to trial. It does not look well for the Bishop, who should be known as a lover of justice, to be publicly vanquished in a suit of this kind.'

 
2 - 19 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE GOTHS AND ROMANS, AND THOSE WHO KEEP THE HARBOURS AND MOUNTAIN-FORTRESSES (CLUSURAS).

'We hate all crime, but domestic bloodshed and treachery most of all. Therefore we command you to act with the utmost severity of the law against the servants of Stephanus, who have killed their master and left him unburied. They might have learned pity even from birds. Even the vulture, who lives on the corpses of other creatures, protects little birds from the attacks of the hawk. Yet men are found cruel enough to slay him who has fed them. To the gallows with them! Let _him_ become the food of the pious vulture, who has cruelly contrived the death of his provider. That is the fitting sepulchre for the man who has left his lord unburied.'

 
2 - 20 KING THEODORIC TO THE SAJO UNIGILIS (OR WILIGIS).
'Let any provision-ships [_sulcatoriæ?_] which may be now lying at Ravenna be ordered round to Liguria (which in ordinary times supplies the needs of Ravenna herself).

'Our presence and that of our Court (Comitatus) attracts many spectators and petitioners to those parts, for whose maintenance an extra effort must be made.'

 
2 - 21 KING THEODORIC TO JOANNES THE APPARITOR.
'The King has conceded to the Spectabiles Spes and Domitius a certain tract of land which was laid waste by wide and muddy streams, and which neither showed a pure expanse of water nor had preserved the comeliness of solid earth, for them to reclaim and cultivate.

'The petition of the _Actores_ of Spes sets forth that the operation is put in jeopardy by the ill-timed parsimony of Domitius, which throws back the labourers to the point from which they set out at first[258]. Therefore let Domitius be stirred up to finish his part of the work, or if he thinks that too expensive, let him throw up his share of the concession and allow his partner to work it out.'

 
2 - 22 KING THEODORIC TO FESTUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN.
'The sons of Ecdicius, whom at first we had ordered to reside in the city, are to be allowed to return to their own country in order to bury their father. That grief is insatiable which feels that it has been debarred from rendering the last offices to the dead. Think at what risk of his life Priam implored the raging Achilles to give him back the body of his son.'

 
2 - 23 KING THEODORIC TO AMPELIUS, DESPOTIUS, AND THEODULUS, SENATORS.
'It befits the discipline of our time that those who are serving the public interests shall not be loaded with superfluous burdens. Labour therefore diligently at the potteries (figulinae) which our Royal authority has conceded to you. Protection is hereby promised against the wiles of wicked men.'

 
2 - 24 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME.
'We hear with sorrow, by the report of the Provincial Judges, that you the Fathers of the State, who ought to set an example to your sons (the ordinary citizens), have been so remiss in the payment of taxes that on this first collection[259] nothing, or next to nothing, has been brought in from any Senatorial house. Thus a crushing weight has fallen on the lower orders (_tenues_, _curiales_), who have had to make good your deficiencies and have been distraught by the violence of the tax-gatherers.

'Now then, oh Conscript Fathers, who owe as much duty to the Republic as we do, pay the taxes for which each one of you is liable, to the Procurators appointed in each Province, by three instalments (trinâ illatione). Or, if you prefer to do so--and it used to be accounted a privilege--pay all at once into the chest of the Vicarius. And let this following edict be published, that all the Provincials may know that they are not to be imposed upon and that they are invited to state their grievances[260].'

 
2 - 25 AN EDICT OF KING THEODORIC.
The King detests the oppression of the unfortunate, and encourages them to make their complaints to him. He has heard that the powerful houses are failing to pay their share of the taxes, and that a larger sum in consequence is being exacted from the _tenues_[261].

[Footnote 261: Here follows a sentence which I am unable to translate: 'Superbia deinde conductorum canonicos solidos non ordine traditos, sed sub iniquo pondere imminentibus fuisse projectos nec universam siliquam quam reddere consueverant solemniter intulisse.' I think the meaning is, that the stewards of the Senators (conductores) arrogantly refused to allow the money paid to the tax-collectors (canonici solidi) to be tested, as in ordinary course it should have been, to see if it was of full weight. The 'imminentes' are, I think, the tax-collectors. I cannot at all understand the clause about 'universam siliquam.']

To 'amputate' such wickedness for the future, the letter last preceding has been addressed to the Senate; and the 'Possessores sive curiales' are now invited to state their grievances fully and frankly, or else ever after hold their peace and cultivate a habit of patience.

 
2 - 26 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: A difficult letter about the corn-merchants of Apulia and Calabria.
1. The corn which they have collected by public sale is not to be demanded over again from them under the title of 'interpretium' [difference of price].

2. Similarly as to the Sextarius which the merchant of each Province imports. No one is to dare insolently to exact the prices which have been always condemned.

3. Fines of £1,200 on the Praefect himself, and £400 on his _officium_ (subordinates), are to be levied if this order is disobeyed.

4. If the 'Siliquatarius' thinks right to withhold the monopoly (of corn) from any merchant, he must not also exact the monopoly payment from him.

5. As to the Aurarii [persons liable to payment of the _lustralis auri collatio_[262]], let the old order be observed, and those only be classed under this function whom the authority of antiquity chose to serve thereunder.

 
2 - 27 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE JEWS LIVING IN GENOA.
The Jews are permitted to roof in the old walls of their synagogue, but they are not to enlarge it beyond its old borders, nor to add any kind of ornament, under pain of the King's sharp displeasure; and this leave is granted on the understanding that it does not conflict with the thirty years' 'Statute of Limitations.'

'Why do ye desire what ye ought to shun? In truth we give the permission which you craved, but we suitably blame the desire of your wandering minds. _We cannot order a religion, because no one is forced to believe against his will._'

 
2 - 28 KING THEODORIC TO STEPHANUS, 'SENATOR, COMES PRIMI ORDINIS, AND EX-PRINCEPS OF OUR OFFICIUM[263].'
Praises him for all the good qualities which have been recognised by successive Judges under whom he has served--his secrecy, efficiency, and incorruptibility.

He is therefore, on his retirement from active service, raised to the honour of a 'Spectabilis,' and rewarded with the rank of 'Comitiva Primi Ordinis.' As a substantial recompence he is to have all the privileges which by 'divalia constituta' belong to the 'ex-principes' of his Schola, and is guaranteed against all damage and 'sordid burdens[264],' with a hope of further employment in other capacities[265].

 
2 - 29 KING THEODORIC TO ADILA, SENATOR AND COMES.
'We wish to protect all our subjects[266], but especially the Church, because by so doing we earn the favour of Heaven. Therefore, in accordance with the petition of the blessed Eustorgius[267], Bishop of Milan, we desire you to accord all necessary protection to the men and farms belonging to the Milanese Church in Sicily: always understanding, however, that they are not to refuse to plead in answer to any public or private suit that may be brought against them. They are to be protected from wrong, but are not themselves to deviate from the path of justice.'

 
2 - 30 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Sequel
'Our generosity to an individual does not harm the public, and there is no reason for putting any bounds to its exercise.

'The Defensores of the Holy Church of Milan want to be enabled to buy as cheap as possible the things which they need for the relief of the poor; and they say that we have bestowed this favour on the Church of Ravenna.

'Your Magnificence will therefore allow them to single out some one merchant who shall buy for them in the market, without being subject to monopoly, siliquaticum, or the payment of gold-fee[268].'

 
2 - 31 KING THEODORIC TO THE DROMONARII [ROWERS IN EXPRESS-BOATS].
'Those who claim the title of "militia" ought to serve the public advantage. We have therefore told the Count of Sacred Largesses that you are to assemble at Hostilia [on the Padus, about fifteen miles east of Mantua], there to receive pay from our Treasury, and then to relieve the land postal-service (veredarii) by excursions up and down the channel of the Padus. There is no fear of _your_ limping; you walk with your hands. No fear of _your_ carriages wearing out; they travel over liquid roads, and suffer no wear and tear because they are borne along upon the wave which itself runs with them.'

 
2 - 32 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME.

'We always enjoy rewarding public spirit. Decius, Magnificus and Patrician, has most nobly volunteered to drain the marsh of Decennonium, where the sea-like swamp, accustomed to impunity through long licence, rushes in and spoils all the surrounding lands.

'We, in consideration of so great an undertaking, determine to secure to him the fruits of his labour, and we therefore wish that you, Conscript Fathers, should appoint a commission of two to visit the spot and mark out the ground, which is at present wasted by the inundations, that this land may be secured to Decius as a permanent possession when he has drained it.'

 
2 - 33 KING THEODORIC TO DECIUS, ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN: same
The complement of the foregoing letter, about the drainage of the marshes of Decennonium, which are hereby granted to him, apparently 'sine fisco,' tax-free.

[But the meaning may be, 'the marshes which you drain _sine fisco_'--without help from the Treasury.]

The chief point of difference between this and the previous letter is that here Decius is allowed and encouraged to associate partners with him in the drainage-scheme, whom he is to reward according to their share of the work. Thus will he be less likely to sink under the enterprise, and he will also lessen men's envy of his success.

 
2 - 34 KING THEODORIC TO ARTEMIDORUS, PRAEFECT OF THE CITY: Embezzlement of City building funds.
'The persons to whom money was entrusted for the rebuilding of the walls of Rome have been embezzling it, as was proved by your examination of their accounts (discussio). We are very glad that you have not hidden their misconduct from us (inclined as a generous mind is to cover up offences), since you would thereby have made yourself partaker of their evil deeds. They must restore that which they have dishonestly appropriated, but we shall not (as we might fairly do) inflict upon them any further fine. We are naturally inclined to clemency, and they will groan at having to give up plunder which they had already calculated upon as their own.'

 
2 - 35 KING THEODORIC TO TANCILA, SENATOR: Theft of brazen statue at Como.
'We are much displeased at hearing that a brazen statue has been stolen from the City of Como. It is vexatious that while we are labouring to increase the ornaments of our cities, those which Antiquity has bequeathed to us should by such deeds be diminished. Offer a reward of 100 aurei (£60) to anyone who will reveal the author of this crime; promise pardon [to an accomplice], and if this does not suffice, call all the workmen together "post diem venerabilem" [Does this mean on the day after Sunday?], and enquire of them "sub terrore" [by torture?] by whose help this has been done. For such a piece of work as moving this statue could only have been undertaken by some handicraftsman.'

 
2 - 36 0EDICT ABOUT THE STATUE AT COMO: Same subject
'Though impunity for the crime should be sufficient reward, we promise 100 aurei, as well as forgiveness for his share in the offence, to anyone who will reveal the author of the theft of the statue at Como. A golden reward for a brazen theft. Anyone not accepting this offer and afterwards convicted will suffer the extreme penalty of the law.'

 
2 - 37 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Largesse to citizens of Spoleto.
'As our Kingdom and revenues prosper, we wish to increase our liberality. Let your Magnificence therefore give to the citizens of Spoletium another "millena" for extraordinary gratuitous admissions to the baths[269]. We wish to pay freely for anything that tends to the health of our citizens, because the praise of our times is the celebration of the joys of the people.'

 
2 - 38 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Immunity from taxation. Hostile ravages.

'We have no pleasure in gains which are acquired by the misery of our subjects. We are informed that the merchants of the city of Sipontum [in Apulia] have been grievously despoiled by hostile incursions [probably by the Byzantine fleet in 508]. Let your Magnificence therefore see to it that they are for two years not vexed by any claims for purveyance (coemptio) on the part of our Treasury. But their other creditors must give them the same indulgence.'

 
2 - 39 KING THEODORIC TO ALOISIUS THE ARCHITECT: Hot springs of Aponum.
'The fountain of Aponus--so called originally in the Greek language as being the remover of pain[270]--has many marvellous and beneficial properties, for the sake of which the buildings round it ought to be kept in good repair. One may see it welling up from the bowels of the earth in spherical form, under a canopy of steam. From this parent spring the waters, glassy-clear and having lost their first impetuosity, flow by various channels into chambers prepared for them by nature but made longer by art. In the first, when the boiling element dashes against the rock, it is hot enough to make a natural sudatorium; then it cools sufficiently for the tepidarium; and at last, quite cold, flows out into a fish-pond like that of Nero. Marvellous provision of Nature, whereby the opposing elements, fire and water, are joined in harmonious union and made to soothe the pain and remove the sickness of man! Yet more wonderful is the moral purity of this fountain. Should a woman descend into the bath when men are using it, it suddenly grows hotter, as if with indignation that out of its abundant supply of waters separate bathing-places should not be constructed for the two sexes, if they wish to enjoy its bounty[271]. Moreover, those secret caves, the bowels of the mountains from whence it springs, have power even to judge contentious business. For if any sheep-stealer presumes to bring to it the fleece of his prey, however often he may dip it in the seething wave, he will have to boil it before he succeeds in cleansing it.

'This fountain then, as we before said, deserves a worthy habitation. If there be anything to repair in the _thermae_ themselves or in the passages (cuniculi), let this be done out of the money which we now send you. Let the thorns and briers which have grown up around it be rooted up. Let the palace, shaken with extreme old age, be strengthened by careful restoration. Let the space which intervenes between the public building and the source of the hot-spring be cleared of its woodland roughness, and the turf around rejoice in the green beauty which it derives from the heated waters.'

 
2 - 40 KING THEODORIC TO BOETIUS THE PATRICIAN: Boetius to choose a harper for the King of the Franks.

'The King of the Franks [Clovis] has asked us to send him a harper. We felt that in you lay our best chance of complying with his request, because you, being such a lover of music yourself, will be able to introduce us to the right man.'

Reflections on the nature of music. She is the Queen of the senses; when she comes forth from her secret abiding place all other thoughts are cast out. Her curative influence on the soul.

The five tones: the Dorian[272], influencing to modesty and purity; the Phrygian to fierce combat; the Aeolian to tranquillity and slumber; the Ionian (Jastius), which sharpens the intellect of the dull and kindles the desire of heavenly things; the Lydian, which soothes the soul oppressed with too many cares.

'To the Dorian mood Of flutes and soft recorders; such as rais'd To highth of noblest temper heroes old Arming to battle, and instead of rage Deliberate valour breath'd, firm and unmov'd With dread of death to flight or foul retreat.']

We distinguish the highest, middle, and lowest in each tone, obtaining thus in all fifteen tones of artificial music.

The diapason is collected from all, and unites all their virtues.

Classical instances of music:

Orpheus. Amphion. Musaeus.

The human voice as an instrument of music. Oratory and Poesy as branches of the art.

The power of song: Ulysses and the Sirens.

David the author of the Psalter, who by his melody three (?) times drove away the evil spirit from Saul.

The lyre is called 'chorda,' because it so easily moves the hearts (corda) of men.

As the diadem dazzles by the variegated lustre of its gems, so the lyre with its divers sounds.

The lyre, the loom of the Muses.

Mercury, the inventor of the lyre, is said to have derived the idea of it from the harmony of the spheres. This astral music, apprehended by reason alone, is said to form one of the delights of heaven. 'If philosophers had placed that enjoyment not in sweet sounds but in the contemplation of the Creator, they would have spoken fitly; for there is truly joy without end, eternity abiding for ever without weariness, and the mere contemplation of the Divinity produces such happiness that nothing can surpass it. This Being furnishes the true immortality; this heaps delight upon delight; and as outside of Him no creature can exist, so without Him changeless happiness cannot be[273].

'We have indulged ourselves in a pleasant digression, because it is always agreeable to talk of learning with the learned; but be sure to get us that _Citharoedus_, who will go forth like another Orpheus to charm the beast-like hearts of the Barbarians. You will thus both obey us and render yourself famous.'

 
2 - 41 KING THEODORIC TO LUDUIN [CLOVIS], KING OF THE FRANKS: Victories of Clovis over the Alamanni.
Congratulates him on his recent victories over the Alamanni. Refers to the ties of affinity between them (Theodoric having married the sister of Clovis). Clovis has stirred up the nation of the Franks, 'prisca aetate residem,' to new and successful encounters. 'It is a memorable triumph that the impetuous Alaman should be struck with such terror as even to beg for his life. Let it suffice that that King with all the pride of his race should have fallen: let it suffice that an innumerable people should have been doomed either to the sword or to slavery.'

He recommends (almost orders) Clovis not to touch the panic-stricken refugees who have fled to the territory of Theodoric. Theodoric himself has always found that those wars were prosperously waged which were ended moderately.

Theodoric sends 'illum et illum' as ambassadors, to take certain verbal counsels from himself, to bring this letter and carry back the reply, and also to introduce the Citharoedus of whom we heard in the preceding letter[274].

[Footnote 274: There are two allusions to the relationship between the Kings: 'vestrae virtutis affinitate' (line 1), and 'ad parentum vestrorum defensionem confugisse' (line 10).]

 
3
3 - 1 0KING THEODORIC TO ALARIC, KING OF THE VISIGOTHS: Dissuades Alaric the Visigoth from war with the Franks.
'Surrounded as you are by an innumerable multitude of subjects, and strong in the remembrance of their having turned back Attila[275], still do not fight with Clovis. War is a terrible thing, and a terrible risk. The long peace may have softened the hearts of your people, and your soldiers from want of practice may have lost the habit of working together on the battlefield. Ere yet blood is shed, draw back if possible. We are sending ambassadors to the King of the Franks to try to prevent this war between our relatives; and the ambassadors whom we are sending to you will go on to Gundibad, King of the Burgundians, to get him to interpose on behalf of peace. Your enemy will be mine also.'

 
3 - 2 KING THEODORIC TO GUNDIBAD, KING OF THE BURGUNDIANS: Dissuades Gundibad from war.
Repeats the arguments in iii. 1 about the ill effects of war on the fortunes of all, and says that it is Theodoric's part to moderate the angry impulses of 'regii juvenes.' It becomes them to reverence 'senes,' such as Theodoric and Gundibad, although they are themselves in the balmy vigour of the flower of their age.

Sends two ambassadors ('illum atque illum') with letters and a verbal message, hoping that the wisdom of Gundibad may reflect upon what they say to him [perhaps too delicate a matter to be committed to writing], and find some way of preserving peace.

 
3 - 3 KING THEODORIC TO THE KINGS OF THE HERULI, WARNI (GUARNI), AND THURINGIANS: Attempt to form a Teutonic coalition on behalf of Alaric..
[On the same subject.] If Clovis succeeds in his unprovoked aggression on Alaric, none of his neighbours will be safe. 'I will tell you just what I think: he who inclines to act without law is prepared to shake the kingdoms of all of us[276].'

[Footnote 276: Compare the state of Europe during the wars of the French Revolution, as expressed by Tennyson:

'Again their ravening eagle rose, In anger, wheel'd on Europe-shadowing wings, And barking for the thrones of kings.']

'Remember how often Alaric's father Euric gave you presents and staved off war from your borders. Repay to the son the kindness of the father. I send you two ambassadors, and I want you to join your representations to mine and Gundibad's, calling on Clovis to desist from his attacks on Alaric and seek redress from the law of nations[277], or else expect the combined attack of all of us, for this quarrel is really the quarrel of us all.'

 
3 - 4 KING THEODORIC TO LUDUIN (LUDWIG, OR CLOVIS), KING OF THE FRANKS: Desires Clovis to desist from war on Alaric.
[On the same subject.] 'The affinities of kings ought to keep their subjects from the plague of war. We are grieved to hear of the paltry causes which are giving rise to rumours of war between you and our son Alaric, rumours which gladden the hearts of the enemies of both of you. Let me say with all frankness, but with all affection, just what I think: "It is the act of a passionate man to get his troops ready for action at the first embassy which he sends." Instead of that refer the matter to our arbitration. It would be a delight to me to choose men capable of mediating between you. What would you yourselves think of me if I could hear unmoved of your murderous intentions towards one another? Away with this conflict, in which one of you will probably be utterly destroyed. Throw away the sword which you wield for _my_ humiliation. By what right do I thus threaten you? By the right of a father and a friend. He who shall despise this advice of ours will have to reckon us and our friends as his adversaries.

'I send two ambassadors to you, as I have to my son Alaric, and hope that they may be able so to arrange matters that no alien malignity may sow the seeds of dissension between you, and that your nations, which under your fathers have long enjoyed the blessings of peace, may not now be laid waste by sudden collision. You ought to believe him who, as you know, has rejoiced in your prosperity. No true friend is he who launches his associates, unwarned, into the headlong dangers of war.'

 
3 - 5 KING THEODORIC TO IMPORTUNUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN: Importunus promoted to the Patriciate. 510
'Noble birth and noble deeds meet in you, and we are therefore bestowing on you an honour to which by age you are scarcely yet entitled. Your father and uncle were especially noteworthy, the glory of the Senate, men who adorned modern ages[278] with the antique virtues, men who were prosperous without being hated. The Senate felt their courage, the multitude their wisdom.

'Therefore, being descended from such ancestors, and yourself possessing such virtues, on laying down the Consular fasces, assume the insignia of the Patriciate. Bind those fillets, which are generally reserved for the hoary head, round your young locks, and by your future actions justify my choice of you.'

 
3 - 6 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE ON IMPORTUNUS' ACCESSION TO THE PATRICIATE. same subject.
'We delight to introduce new men to the Senate, but we delight still more when we can bring back to that venerable body, crowned with fresh honours, her own offspring[279]. And such is now my fortune in presenting to you Importunus, crowned with the honours of the Patriciate; Importunus, who is descended from the great stock of the Decii, a stock illustrated by noble names in every generation, by the favour of the Senate and the choice of the people. Even as a boy he had a countenance of serene beauty, and to the gifts of Nature he added the endowments of the mind. From his parents in household lays he learned the great deeds of the old Decii. Once, at a great spectacle, the whole school at the recitation of the Lay of the Decii turned their eyes on Importunus, discerning that he would one day rival his ancestors. Thus his widowed mother brought him up, him and all his troop of brothers, and gave to the Curia as many Consulars as she had sons[280]. All these private virtues I have discerned in him, and now seal them with promotion to the Patriciate. At this act I call on you specially to rejoice.'

 
3 - 7 KING THEODORIC TO THE VENERABLE JANUARIUS, BISHOP OF SALONA: Extortion by the Bishop of Salona.

'The lamentable petition of John says that you have taken sixty tuns of oil from him, and never paid him for them. It is especially important that preachers of righteousness should be righteous themselves. We cannot suppose that God is ignorant whence come the offerings which we make before Him [and He must therefore hate robbery for a burnt offering]. Pray enquire into this matter, and if the complaint be well founded remedy it promptly. You who preach to us our duty in great things should not be caught tripping in little ones.'

 
3 - 8 KING THEODORIC TO VENANTIUS, SENATOR, CORRECTOR OF LUCANIA AND BRUTTII: Remissness of Venantius in collection of public revenue.
'Remissness in the collection of the public taxes is a great fault, and no kindness in the end to the taxpayer. For want of a timely caution you probably have to end by selling him up.

'The Count of Sacred Largesses tells us that you were long ago commissioned to get in the _Bina_ and _Terna_ [and have not done so]. Be quick about it, that the collection may be completed according to the registers of the Treasury. If you are not quick, and the Treasury suffers loss, you will have to make it good out of your private property. You have not shown proper respect to our orders, nor a due sense of the obligation of your own promise.'

 
3 - 9 KING THEODORIC TO THE POSSESSORES, DEFENSORES, AND CURIALES[282] DWELLING AT AESTUNAE[283]: Marbles for Ravenna.
'We wish to build new edifices without despoiling the old[284]. But we are informed that in your municipality there are blocks of masonry and columns formerly belonging to some building now lying absolutely useless and unhonoured. If it be so, send these slabs of marble[285] and columns[286] by all means to Ravenna, that they may be again made beautiful and take their place in a building there.'

 
3 - 10 0 KING THEODORIC TO THE ILLUSTRIOUS FESTUS, PATRICIAN: The same subject.
A similar order, for the transport of marbles from the Pincian Hill to Ravenna, by Catabulenses[287]. 'We have ordered a "subvectus" [assistance from the public postal-service?], that the labourers may set to work at once.'

 
3 - 11 0 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS [A.D. 510]: Argolicus appointed Praefect of the City.
Announces to this young man his nomination to the Praefecture of the City (for the 4th Indiction). Enlarges on the dignity of the office, especially as involving the Presidency of the Senate, and calls upon him by a righteous and sober life to show himself worthy of the choice.

Argolicus is a great student [perhaps a literary friend of Cassiodorus], and he is exhorted to keep himself in the right path by musing on the great examples of antiquity.

 
3 - 12 0KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: The same subject.
Rehearses the usual sentiments about the dignity of the Senate and Theodoric's care in the choice of officials.

'It is easier, if one may say so, for Nature herself to err, than that a Sovereign should make a State unlike to himself.'

Recounts the ancestry of Argolicus. The older Senators will remember his eloquent and purely-living grandfather, a man of perfectly orthodox reputation, who filled the offices of Comes Sacrarum Largitionum and Magister Officiorum. His father never stained the dignity of 'Comes Privatarum' by cruelty, and was free from ill-gotten gains in an age when avarice was not accounted a crime[288].

'We may hope that the son will follow the example of such distinguished ancestors.'

 
3 - 13 KING THEODORIC TO SUNHIVAD, SENATOR: Sunhivad, Governor of Samnium.
'You who have ruled your own life in a long career so well should make a good governor of others. I therefore send you to Samnium as Governor, in reply to the complaints which reach me from that Province. Settle according to the law of justice the disputes which have arisen there between the Romans and the Goths.'

 
3 - 14 KING THEODORIC TO THE VENERABLE BISHOP AURIGENES: Accusations against the servants of a Bishop.
'You as a Bishop will be especially grieved to hear of any offences against the sanctity of the married state. Julianus complains that his wife has been outraged and his goods wasted by some of your servants [probably slaves].

'Do you enquire into the matter, and if the complaint appears to be just, deal promptly and severely with the offenders.'

 
3 - 15 KING THEODORIC TO THEODAHAD, SENATOR[289]: A contumacious person handed over to Theodahad.
'It is the extreme of insolence in anyone not to execute our "sacred orders." A certain person whom we commanded to attend before the judgment-seat of the Illustrious Sona, has with inveterate cunning withdrawn himself therefrom. We therefore hand him over to you, that your fame may grow by your skilful management of a difficult case like this.'

 
3 - 16 KING THEODORIC TO GEMELLUS, SENATOR (509-510): Appointment of Gemellus as Governor of Gaul.
'Having proved your worth by experience we are now going to send you to govern the Provinces of Gaul newly wrested [from Clovis], as Vicar of the Praefects[290].

'Think what a high opinion we must have formed of you to delegate to you the government of these Provinces, the conquest of which has added so much to our glory, and the good opinion of whose inhabitants we so particularly wish to acquire. Abhor turbulence; do not think of avarice; show yourself in all things such a Governor as "Romanus Princeps" ought to send, and let the Province feel such an improvement in her lot that she may "rejoice to have been conquered."'

 
3 - 17 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE GAULISH PROVINCES (510): Proclamation to the new Gaulish subjects.
'Obey the Roman customs. You are now by God's blessing restored to your ancient freedom; put off the barbarian; clothe yourselves with the morals of the toga; unlearn cruelty, that you may not be unworthy to be our subjects. We are sending you Spectabilis Gemellus as Vicarius Praefectorum, a man of tried worth, who we trust will be guilty of no crime, because he knows he would thereby seriously displease us. Obey his commands therefore. Do not dislike the reign of Law because it is new to you, after the aimless seethings of Barbarism (Gentilitas).

'You may now bring out your long-hidden treasures; the rich and the noble will again have a chance of suitable promotion. You may now enjoy what till now you have only heard of--the triumph of Public Right, the most certain solace of human life, the help of the weak, the curb of the strong. You may now understand that men are exalted not by their bodily strength, but by reason.'

 
3 - 18 KING THEODORIC TO GEMELLUS: Magnus to be restored to his possessions.
'We wish that all who have elected to live under our Clemency should be the better for it.

'The Spectabilis Magnus, spurning the conversation of our enemies [Franks?], and remembering his own origin, has sought re-patriation in the Roman Empire; but during his absence his property has suffered loss. Let him therefore be restored to, and henceforward have unquestioned possession of, all that he can prove to be his own in the way of lands, urban or rural slaves.'

 
3 - 19 KING THEODORIC TO DANIEL [A 'COMMONITORIUM']: Monopoly of supply of marble sarcophagi.
'We wish the servants of our palace to have proper reward for their labours, though we might call on them to render them gratuitously. Therefore, being much pleased with your skill in preparing and ornamenting marbles, we concede to you the [sole] right of furnishing the marble chests in which the citizens of Ravenna bury their dead.

'They thus keep them above ground--no small consolation to the survivors, since the souls alone depart from this world's conversation; but they do not altogether lose the bodies which once were dear to them.

'Do not, however, impose upon their sadness; do not let a relative be forced to the alternative of wasting his substance in funeral expenses, or else throwing the body of his dear one into some well. Be moderate in your charges.'

 
3 - 20 KING THEODORIC TO THE SAJO GRIMODA AND TO THE APPARITOR FERROCINCTUS: Oppression of Castorius by Faustus.
'We are determined to assist the humble, and to repress the violence of the proud.

'The lamentable petition of Castorius sets forth that he has been unjustly deprived of his property by the magnificent Praetorian Praefect Faustus. [The same, no doubt, to whom are addressed iii. 55, i. 35, and the immediately succeeding letter (iii. 21).]

'If it be so, let the invader (pervasor) restore to Castorius his property, and hand over, besides, another property of equal value.

'If Faustus have employed any intermediate person in the act of violence, let him be brought to us in chains; and if that well-known author of ill [Faustus] tries any further to injure Castorius, he shall pay £2,000, besides having the misery of seeing his would-be victim unharmed.

'No Powers of any kind, be they Praetorian Praefects or what they may, shall be permitted to trample on the lowly.'

 
3 - 21 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS: Disgrace and temporary exile of Faustus.
'As all men require change, Faustus is allowed to absent himself from the sacred walls of Rome for four months, which he may spend at his own Penates. The King expects, however, that he will then return to the most famous (opinatissima) City, from which no Roman Senator can long be absent without grief.'

 
3 - 22 KING THEODORIC TO ARTEMIDORUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS: An earnest invitation to the King's friend, Artemidorus.
'We hereby [by these oracles] invite your Greatness to behold us, which we know will be most agreeable to you, in order that you who have now spent a large portion of your life with us may be satisfied by the sweetness of our presence. He who is permitted to share our converse deems it a Divine boon. We believe that you will come gladly, as we shall entertain you with alacrity.'

 
3 - 23 KING THEODORIC TO COLOSSAEUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES (CIR. A.D. 505): Appointment of Colossaeus as Governor of Pannonia.
'We delight to entrust our mandates to persons of approved character.

'We are sending you "with the dignity of the illustrious belt" to Pannonia Sirmiensis, an old habitation of the Goths. Let that Province be induced to welcome her old defenders, even as she used gladly to obey our ancestors. Show forth the justice of the Goths, a nation happily situated for praise, since it is theirs to unite the forethought of the Romans and the virtue of the Barbarians. Remove all ill-planted customs[291], and impress upon all your subordinates that we would rather that our Treasury lost a suit than that it gained one wrongfully, rather that we lost money than the taxpayer was driven to suicide.'

 
3 - 24 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE BARBARIANS AND ROMANS SETTLED IN PANNONIA: To the Pannonians, on the appointment of Colossaeus.
'Intent on the welfare of our subjects we are sending you Colossaeus for Governor. His name means a mighty man; and a mighty man he is, who has given many proofs of his virtue. Now we exhort you with patience and constancy to submit yourselves to his authority. Do not excite that wrath before which our enemies tremble. Acquiesce in the rule of justice in which the whole world rejoices. Why should you, who have now an upright Judge[292], settle your grievances by single combat? What has man got a tongue for, if the armed hand is to settle all differences? or where can peace be looked for, if there is fighting in a civilised State like ours[293]? Imitate then our Goths, who have learned to practise war abroad, to show peaceable dispositions at home. We want you so to live as you see that our subjects (parentes) have lived and flourished under the Divine blessing.'

 
3 - 25 KING THEODORIC TO SIMEON, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES: Tax-collecting and iron-mining in Dalmatia.
'We entrust to you the duty of collecting throughout the Province of Dalmatia the arrears of Siliquaticum for the first, second, and third Indictions [Sept. 1, 506, to Aug. 31, 509]. We do this not only for the sake of gain to our Treasury, but to prevent the demoralisation of our subjects.

'Also by careful mining (cuniculo veritatis) seek out the iron veins in Dalmatia, where the softness of earth is pregnant with the rigour of iron, which is cooked by fire that it may become hard.

'Iron enables us to defend our country, is serviceable for agriculture and for countless arts of human life: yea, iron is master of gold, compelling the rich man, weaponless, to obey the poor man who wields a blade of steel.'

 
3 - 26 KING THEODORIC TO OSUN, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COUNT: Simeon's journey to Dalmatia.
Commands him to provide all the necessaries for the journey of 'Clarissimus' Simeon, setting off for Dalmatia on the aforesaid mission to collect Siliquaticum and develop the iron mines.

 
3 - 27 KING THEODORIC TO JOANNES, SENATOR, CONSULAR OF CAMPANIA: Promises protection against the Praetorian Praefect.
'You have not complained to us in vain that the Praetorian Praefect [perhaps again Faustus] is venting a private grudge against you under colour of the discharge of his public duty. We will wall you round with our protection. Go now and discharge the duties of Consular of Campania with the like devotion as your predecessors, and with this reflection: "If the King prevents my superior the Praetorian Praefect from doing me harm, with what unfailing rigour will he visit me if I do wrong."'

 
3 - 28 KING THEODORIC TO CASSIODORUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN[294]: An invitation to Cassiodorus Senior to come to Court.
'For your glorious services, and your incorruptible administration, which has given deep peace to the nation, we reward you by summoning you to Court.

'Having endeavoured to check _another_ [probably alluding to the disgrace of Faustus], we have bestowed our praises on you, as all the Palace knows. Come then, come eagerly, as he should do whom his Sovereign is going to entertain[295].'

 
3 - 29 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, ILLUSTRIS AND PRAEFECT OF THE CITY: Permission to Paulinus to repair certain granaries at Rome.
'The King should sow his gifts broadcast, as the sower his seeds--not put them all into one hole.

'The Patrician Paulinus represents to us that such and such granaries are falling into ruin and are of no use to anyone, and asks to be allowed to repair them and transmit them to his heirs. We consent to this, if you are of opinion that they are not wanted for the public, and if there is no corn in them belonging to our Treasury.

'It is especially fitting that all ruined buildings should be repaired in Rome. In Rome, praised beyond all other cities by the world's mouth, there should be nothing sordid or mediocre[296].'

 
3 - 30 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, ILLUSTRIS AND PRAEFECTUS URBIS: Repair of the Cloacae of Rome.
'We are ever vigilant for the repair and beautification of Rome.

'Let your Sublimity know that we have directed John to repair the Cloacae of the City, those splendid works which strike astonishment into the hearts of all beholders. There you see rivers as it were shut in by concave mountains, flowing down through mighty rafters[297] (?). There you see men steering their ships with the utmost possible care, lest they should suffer shipwreck. Hence may the greatness of Rome be inferred. What other city can compare with her in her heights when even her depths are so incomparable?

'See therefore, O Praefect, that John as a public officer receives his proper salary.'

 
3 - 31 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Commission issued to John to check ruin of aqueducts and temples in Rome.
'Our care is for the whole Republic, "in which, by the favour of God, we are striving to bring back all things to their former state;" but especially for the City of Rome. We hear that great depredations are being committed on public property there.

'(1) It is said that the water of the aqueducts (formae) is being diverted to turn mills and water gardens--a thing which would not be suffered even in the country districts. Even in redressing this wrong we must be observant of law; and therefore if it should be found that those who are doing this can plead thirty years' prescription, they must be bought off, but the misuser must cease. If the diversion is of less ancient date[298], it must of course be at once stopped without compensation.

'(2) Slaves assigned by the forethought of previous rulers to the service of the formae have passed under the sway of private masters.

'(3) Great weights of brass and lead (the latter very easy to steal, from its softness) have been stripped off from the public buildings. Now Ionos, King of Thessaly, is said to have first discovered lead, and Midas, King of Phrygia, brass. How grievous that we should be handed down to posterity as neglecting two metals which they were immortalised by discovering!

'(4) Temples and other public buildings, which at the request of many we have repaired, are handed over without a thought to spoliation and ruin.

'We have appointed the Spectabilis John to enquire into and set straight all these matters. _You_ ought to have brought the matter before us yourselves: at least, now, support him with the necessary "solatia."'

 
3 - 32 KING THEODORIC TO GEMELLUS, SENATOR. A.D. 511: Remission of taxes to citizens of Arles.
'The men of Arles, who were reduced to penury in the glorious siege which they endured on our behalf, are freed from the obligation of taxes for the fourth Indiction [Sept. 1, 510, to Aug. 31, 511]. We ask for these payments from men at peace, not from men besieged. How can one claim taxes from the lord of a field when one knows he has not been able to cultivate it? They have already rendered a most precious tribute in their fidelity to us. After this year, however, the taxes will be collected as usual.'

 
3 - 33 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, ILLUSTRIS, PRAEFECT OF THE CITY: Promotion of Armentarius and Superbus to post of Referendi Curiae.
Armentarius (Clarissimus) and his son Superbus are to receive the privilege of _Referendi Curiae_[299]. Thus will the profession of the law be, as is most fitting, adorned with the honours of the Senate.

Praises of Rhetoric. The man who has swayed the judges by his eloquence is sure to have a favouring audience in the Senate.

 
3 - 34 KING THEODORIC TO THE INHABITANTS OF MASSILIA: Count Marabad Governor of Marseilles.
'In accordance with our usual policy of sending persons of tried ability and moderation to govern the Provinces, we are sending Count Marabad [a Gothic name?] to act as your Governor, to bring solace to the lowly and repress the insolent, and to force all into the path of justice, which is the secret of the prosperity of our Empire. As befits your long-tried loyalty, welcome and obey him.'

 
3 - 35 KING THEODORIC TO ROMULUS.
[It is surely possible that this is the dethroned Emperor. The name Romulus, which, as we know, he derived from his maternal grandfather, was not a very common one in Rome (it must be admitted there is another Romulus, ii. 14). And is there not something rather peculiar in the entire absence of all titles of honour, the superscription being simply 'Romulo Theodoricus Rex,' as if neither King nor scribe quite knew how to address an ex-Emperor?]

[Sidenote: Gifts to Romulus shall not be revoked.]

'The liberality of the Prince must be kept firm and unshaken by the arts of malignant men. Therefore any gift which shall be proved to have been given according to our orders by the Patrician Liberius, to you _or to your mother_, by written instrument (pictacium or pittacium), shall remain in full force, and you need not fear its being questioned.'

[For Liberius, see ii. 16. A man of that eminence, who was employed to arrange disputes between the Goths and Romans at the first settlement of the former in Italy, was the very man to be also employed to arrange terms with Augustulus. There is some reason to think that the mother of the deposed Emperor was named Barbaria, and that she is mentioned in the history of the translation of the relics of St. Severinus. See 'Italy and her Invaders' iii. 190.]

 
3 - 36 KING THEODORIC TO THE ILLUSTRIOUS COUNT ARIGERN: Complaints against Venantius.
'Firminus alleges that he has some cause of complaint against the Magnificent Venantius [son of Liberius, mentioned in the previous letter, and strongly commended in ii. 15], and that Venantius treats his claims with contempt. There is always a danger of justice being wrested in the interests of the great. We therefore desire you with all due reverence to address the aforesaid Magnificent person and desire him to appoint a representative, with proper credentials, to plead in our Court in answer to the claims of Firminus, who will be punished for his audacity if he have brought a false charge against so illustrious a person.'

 
3 - 37 KING THEODORIC TO BISHOP PETER: Alleged injustice of a Bishop.
[See the full explanation of this letter in Dahn, 'Könige der Germanen' iii. 193-4. Cf. also Var. iii. 14. Observe how the marginal note (in the edition of the Benedictine, Garet) strains the doctrine of this letter in favour of the clergy[300].]

'Germanus, in his "flebilis allegatio," informs us that you detain from him a part of the property of his father Thomas. As it is proper that causes which concern you should first be remitted to you (so often employed as judges to settle the disputes of others), we call upon you to enquire into this claim, and if it be a just one to satisfy it. Know that if you fail to do justice yourself to the petitioner, his cause will be carried through to our own audience-chamber.'

 
3 - 38 KING THEODORIC TO WANDIL [VUANDIL[301]]: The Gothic troops at Avignon to abstain from molesting the citizens.
'Our Piety wishes that there should be order and good government everywhere in our dominions, but especially in Gaul, that our new subjects there may form a good opinion of the ruler under whom they have come. Therefore by this authority we charge you to see that no violence happen in Avignon where you reside. Let our army live "civiliter" with the Romans, and let the latter feel that our troops are come for their defence, not for their annoyance.'

 
3 - 39 KING THEODORIC TO FELIX, ILLUSTRIS AND CONSUL (A.D. 511): Largesse to charioteers of Milan.
'Those who minister to the pleasures of the public should be liberally treated, and the Consul must not belie the expectations of his generosity which have been formed when he was Senator. Therefore let your Sublimity enquire into the petition for largesse presented by the charioteers of Milan; and if their statements are correct, let them have whatever it has been customary for them to receive. In matters of this kind custom creates a kind of debt.'

 
3 - 40 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE PROVINCIALS SETTLED IN GAUL: Immunity from taxes for districts ravaged by war.
'We wish promptly to relieve all the distresses of our subjects, and we therefore at once announce to you that the districts ravaged by the incursions of the enemy will not be called upon to pay tribute at the fourth Indiction [Sept. 510, to Aug. 511]. For we have no pleasure in receiving what is paid by a heavy-hearted contributor. The part of the country, however, which has been untouched by the enemy will have to contribute to the expense of our army. But a hungry defender is a weak defender.'

 
3 - 41 KING THEODORIC TO GEMELLUS, SENATOR [Governor of Gothic Gaul[302]]: Corn for the garrisons on the Durance.

'A burden borne in common is lightened, since only the edge as it were of the whole rests on the shoulders of each individual. We have ordered the corn for the army to be carried from the granaries of Marseilles to the forts upon the Durance. Let all unite in this toil. The willing labour of many brings a speedy end to the work.'

 
3 - 42 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE PROVINCIALS IN GAUL: No part of Gaul to be called on for military contributions.
'Because the generosity of the Prince should even outrun the petitions of his subjects we repeal that part of a previous letter [iii. 40] which says that the unravaged portion of the Province of Gaul must pay the expenses of our soldiers. We will transmit to the Duces and Praepositi sufficient money to provide "alimonia nostris Gothis."'

 
3 - 43 KING THEODORIC TO UNIGIS, THE SWORD-BEARER [SPATARIUS]: Runaway slaves to be restored to their owners.
'We delight to live after the law of the Romans, whom we seek to defend with our arms; and we are as much interested in the maintenance of morality as we can possibly be in war. For what profit is there in having removed the turmoil of the Barbarians, unless we live according to law? Certain slaves, on our army's entry into Gaul, have run away from their old masters and betaken themselves to new ones. Let them be restored to their rightful owners. Rights must not be confounded under the rule of justice, nor ought the defender of liberty to favour recreant slaves. [Probably an allusion to the office of the _Assertor Libertatis_ in the _Liberalis Causa_, as set forth in the Theodosian Code iv. 8.] Let other kings desire the glory of battles won, of cities taken, of ruins made; our purpose is, God helping us, so to rule that our subjects shall grieve that they did not earlier acquire the blessing of our dominion.'

 
3 - 44 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE LANDOWNERS [POSSESSORES] OF ARLES: Repair of walls of Arles, and supply of corn.
'We wish to refresh men, but to repair cities also, that the renewed fortune of the citizens may be displayed by the splendour of their buildings.

'We have therefore directed that a certain sum of money be sent for the repair of the walls and old towers of Arles. But we are also going to send you, as soon as the time is favourable for navigation, provisions to supply the waste caused by the war. Be of good cheer, therefore! Grain for which our word is pledged is as good as grain already in your granaries.'

 
3 - 45 KING THEODORIC TO ARIGERN, ILLUSTRIS AND COUNT: Site disputed between Roman Church and Samaritans.
'It is represented to us by the Defensors of the "sacrosanct" Roman Church that Pope Simplicius, of blessed memory, bought a house at Rome[303] of Eufrasius the Acolyte, with all proper formalities, and that now the people of the Samaritan superstition, hardened in effrontery, allege that a synagogue of theirs was built on that site, and claim it accordingly; whereas the very style of building, say their opponents, shows that this was meant as a private house and not as a synagogue. Enquire into this matter, and do justice accordingly. If we will not tolerate chicanery [calumniae] against men, much less will we against the Divinity Himself.'

 
3 - 46 KING THEODORIC TO ADEODATUS: Further charges of misgovernment against Venantius.
'The crimes of subjects are an occasion for manifesting the virtues of princes. You have addressed to us your petition, alleging that you were compelled by the Spectabilis Venantius, Governor of Lucania and Bruttii, to confess yourself guilty of the rape of the maiden Valeriana.

[Sidenote: Illogical decision in the case of Adeodatus.]

'Overcome, you say, by the severity of your imprisonment and the tortures inflicted upon you, and longing for death as a release from agony; being moreover refused the assistance of Advocates, while the utmost resources of rhetoric were at the disposal of your opponents, you confessed a crime which you had never committed.

'Such is your statement. The Governor of Bruttii sends his _relatio_ in opposition, saying that we must not give credence to a petitioner who is deceitfully seeking to upset a sentence which was given in the interests of public morality.

'Our decision is that we will by our clemency mitigate the severity of your punishment. From the date of this decree you shall be banished for six months; and on your return no note of infamy of any kind shall be attached to you; since it is competent for the Prince to wipe off all the blots on a damaged reputation. Anyone who offends against this decree [by casting your old offence in your teeth] shall be fined £120 (3 lbs. of gold). And all who are accused of the same offence in any place or time, but who offended through ignorance, are to be freed from all fear of punishment.'

 
3 - 47 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Jovinus, for killing a fellow Curial, is banished to the islands of Lipari, the volcanoes of which are described.
'Jovinus the Curialis, according to the report of the Corrector of Lucania and Bruttii, had an angry altercation with a fellow Curial (collega), and in his rage slew him.

'He then took refuge within the precincts of a church, and refused to surrender himself to justice. We decide that the capital punishment shall be remitted out of reverence for his place of refuge, but he shall be banished to the Vulcanian [Lipari] Islands, there to live away from the paternal hearth, but ever in the midst of burning, like a salamander, which is a small and subtile beast, of kin to the slippery worm, clothed with a yellow colour.

'The substance of volcanoes, which is perpetually destroyed, is by the inextricable power of Nature perpetually renewed.

'The Vulcanian Islands are named from Vulcan, the god of fire, and burst into eruption on the day when Hannibal took poison at the Court of Prusias. It is especially wonderful that a mountain kindling into such a multitude of flames, should yet be half hidden by the waves of the sea.'

 
3 - 48 KING THEODORIC TO ALL GOTHS AND ROMANS LIVING NEAR THE FORT OF VERRUCA[304]: Fortification of Verruca in the Tyrol.
'It is the duty and the glory of a ruler to provide with wise forethought for the safety of his subjects. We have therefore ordered the Sajo Leodifrid that under his superintendence you should build yourselves houses in the fort Verruca, which from its position receives its most suitable name[305].

'For it is in the midst of the plains a hill of stone roundly arising, which with its tall sides, being bare of woods, is all one great mountain fortress. Its lower parts are slenderer (graciliora) than its summit, and like some softest fungus the top broadens out, while it is thin at bottom. It is a mound not made by soldiers[306], a stronghold made safe by Nature[307], where the besieged can try no _coup-de-main_ and the besieged need feel no panic. Past this fort swirls the Adige, that prince of rivers, with the pleasant gurgle of his clear waters, affording a defence and an adornment in one. It is a fort almost unequalled in the whole world, "a key that unlocks a kingdom[308];" and all the more important because it bars the invasion of wild and savage nations. This admirable defence what inhabitant would not wish to share, since even foreigners delight to visit it? and though by God's blessing we trust that the Province [of Raetia] is in our times secure, yet it is the part of prudence to guard against evils, though we may think they will not arise.'

Examples of gulls, who fly inland when they foresee a storm; of dolphins, which seek the shallower waters; of the edible sea-urchin, 'that honey of flesh, that dainty of the deep,' who anchors himself to a little pebble to prevent being dashed about by the waves; of birds, who change their dwellings when winter draws nigh; of beasts, who adapt their lair to the time of year. And shall man alone be improvident? Shall he not imitate that higher Providence by which the world is governed?

[The fortress of Verruca does not seem to be mentioned in the 'Notitia,' in the Antonine 'Itinerary,' or by the geographer of Ravenna.

Maffei ('Verona Illustrata,' Book ix. Vol. 2, pp. 391-2 in ed. 1825) comments on this passage, and argues that _Verruca = Dos Trento_, a cliff about a mile from Trient, and this identification seems to have been accepted, for Ball ('Alpine Guide, Eastern Alps,' p. 404) says: 'In the centre of the valley, close to the city, rises a remarkable rock known as _Dos Trento, and also called La Verruca_, formerly frequented for the sake of the beautiful view which it commands. Since 1857 it has been strongly fortified, and permission to ascend to the summit is not easily obtained.'

Maffei says that the French bombarded Trient from this rock in 1703. He speaks of another 'Verruca, or Rocca,' on the other side of Aquileia, and thinks that the modern word 'rocca' (rock) may perhaps have been derived herefrom (?).

It is remarkable that there is a place called _Verrua_ near the Po in Piedmont (about 20 miles east of Turin). 'Situated upon an abrupt and insulated hill, in a most defensible position, it opposed an obstinate resistance to the Emperor Frederick II. In more recent times (1704), the Duc de Vendôme attacked it without success' (Murray's 'Guide to Northern Italy,' p. 51). No doubt this was also originally called _Verruca_.]

 
3 - 49 KING THEODORIC TO THE HONOURED POSSESSORES, DEFENSORES, AND CURIALES OF THE CITY OF CATANA: Repair of amphitheatre of Catana.
'It is a great delight to the Ruler when his subjects of their own accord suggest that which is for the good of the State. You have called our attention to the ruinous state of your walls, and ask leave to use for its repair the stones of the amphitheatre, which have fallen down from age and are now of no ornament to your town, in fact only show disgraceful ruins. You have not only our permission to do this, but our hearty approval. Let the stones, which can be of no use while they lie there, rise again into the fabric of the walls; and your improved defence will be our boast and confidence.'

 
3 - 50 KING THEODORIC TO THE PROVINCIALS OF NORICUM: The Alamanni and Noricans to exchange their cattle.
'It is an admirable arrangement when a favour can be conferred by which giver and receiver are alike benefited.

'We therefore decree that you should exchange your oxen for those of the Alamanni.

'Theirs is the finer and larger breed of cattle, but they are worn out by the long journey. Thus will they get fresh beasts capable of doing the work which is required of them, and you will permanently improve your breed of cattle, and so be able to till your fields better. Thus, what does not often happen, the same transaction will equally benefit both parties to it.'

 
3 - 51 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Stipend of Thomas the Charioteer. Description of the Circus.
'Constancy in actors is not a very common virtue, therefore with all the more pleasure do we record the faithful allegiance of Thomas the Charioteer, who came long ago from the East hither, and who, having become champion charioteer, has chosen to attach himself to "the seat of our Empire[309];" and we therefore decide that he shall be rewarded by a monthly allowance. He embraced what was then the losing side in the chariot races and carried it to victory--victory which he won so often that envious rivals declared that he conquered by means of witchcraft.

'The sight of a chariot-race (spectaculum) drives out morality and invites the most trifling contentions; it is the emptier of honourable conduct, the ever-flowing spring of squabbles: a thing which Antiquity commenced as a matter of religion, but which a quarrelsome posterity has turned into a sport.

'For Aenomaus is said first to have exhibited this sport at Elis, a city of Asia (?), and afterwards Romulus, at the time of the rape of the Sabines, displayed it in rural fashion to Italy, no buildings for the purpose being yet founded. Long after, Augustus, the lord of the world, raising his works to the same high level as his power, built a fabric marvellous even to Romans, which stretched far into the Vallis Murcia. This immense mass, firmly girt round with hills, enclosed a space which was fitted to be the theatre of great events.

'Twelve _Ostia_ at the entrance represent the twelve signs of the Zodiac. These are suddenly and equally opened by ropes let down by the _Hermulae_ (little pilasters)[310]. The four colours worn by the four parties of charioteers denote the seasons: green for verdant spring, blue for cloudy winter, red for flaming summer, white for frosty autumn. Thus, throughout the spectacle we see a determination to represent the works of Nature. The _Biga_ is made in imitation of the moon, the _Quadriga_ of the sun. The circus horses (_Equi desultorii_), by means of which the servants of the Circus announce the heats (_Missos_) that are to be run, imitate the herald-swiftness of the morning star. Thus it came to pass that while they deemed they were worshipping the stars, they profaned their religion by parodying it in their games.

'A white line is drawn not far from the ostia to each _Podium_ (balcony), that the contest may begin when the quadrigae pass it, lest they should interrupt the view of the spectators by their attempts to get each before the other[311]. There are always seven circuits round the goals (_Metae_) to one heat, in analogy with the days of the week. The goals themselves have, like the decani[312] of the Zodiac, each three pinnacles, round which the swift quadrigae circle like the sun. The wheels indicate the boundaries of East and West. The channel (_Euripus_) which surrounds the Circus presents us with an image of the glassy sea, whence come the dolphins which swim hither through the waters[313] (?). The lofty obelisks lift their height towards heaven; but the upper one is dedicated to the sun, the lower one to the moon: and upon them the sacred rites of the ancients are indicated with Chaldee signs for letters[314].

'The _Spina_ (central wall, or backbone) represents the lot of the unhappy captives, inasmuch as the generals of the Romans, marching over the backs of their enemies, reaped that joy which was the reward of their labours. The _Mappa_ (napkin), which is still seen to give the signal at the games, came into fashion on this wise. Once when Nero was loitering over his dinner, and the populace, as usual, was impatient for the spectacle to begin, he ordered the napkin which he had used for wiping his fingers to be thrown out of window, as a signal that he gave the required permission. Hence it became a custom that the display of a napkin gave a certain promise of future _circenses_.

'The _Circus_ is so called from "circuitus:" _circenses_ is, as it were, _circu-enses_, because in the rude ages of antiquity, before an elaborate building had been prepared for the purpose, the races were exhibited on the green grass, and the multitude were protected by the river on one side and the swords (_enses_) of the soldiers on the other[315].

'We observe, too, that the rule of this contest is that it be decided in twenty-four heats[316], an equal number to that of the hours of day and night. Nor let it be accounted meaningless that the number of circuits round the goals is expressed by the putting up of _eggs_[317], since that emblem, pregnant as it is with many superstitions[318], indicates that something is about to be born from thence. And in truth we may well understand that the most fickle and inconstant characters, well typified by the birds who have laid those eggs, will spring from attendance on these spectacles[319]. It were long to describe in detail all the other points of the Roman Circus, since each appears to arise from some special cause. This only will we remark upon as pre-eminently strange, that in these beyond all other spectacles men's minds are hurried into excitement without any regard to a fitting sobriety of character. The Green charioteer flashes by: part of the people is in despair. The Blue gets a lead: a larger part of the City is in misery. They cheer frantically when they have gained nothing; they are cut to the heart when they have received no loss; and they plunge with as much eagerness into these empty contests as if the whole welfare of the imperilled fatherland were at stake.

'No wonder that such a departure from all sensible dispositions should be attributed to a superstitious origin. We are compelled to support this institution by the necessity of humouring the majority of the people, who are passionately fond of it; for it is always the few who are led by reason, while the many crave excitement and oblivion of their cares. Therefore, as we too must sometimes share the folly of our people, we will freely provide for the expenses of the Circus, however little our judgment approves of this institution.'

 
3 - 52 KING THEODORIC TO THE ILLUSTRIOUS CONSULARIS: On Roman land surveying.
'We are sorry to hear that a dispute (which is on the point of being settled by arms instead of by the law) has arisen between the Spectabiles Leontius and Paschasius as to the boundaries of their properties[320]. If they are so fierce against one another here in Italy, where there are mountains and rivers and the "arcaturae" [square turrets of the land surveyor] to mark the boundaries, what would they have done in Egypt, where the yearly returning waters of the Nile wash out all landmarks, and leave a deposit of mud over all?

'Geometry was discovered by the Chaldaeans, who perceived that its principles lay at the root of Astronomy, Music, Mechanics, Architecture, Medicine, Logic, and every science which deals with generals. This science was eagerly welcomed by the Egyptians, who perceived the advantage it would be to them in recovering the boundaries of estates obliterated by the wished-for deluge[321] of the Nile.

'Therefore let your Greatness send an experienced land surveyor (agrimensor) to settle this dispute by assigning fixed boundaries to the two estates.

'Augustus made a complete survey of the whole "Orbis Romanus," in order that each taxpayer should know exactly his resources and obligations. The results of this survey were tabulated by the author Hyrummetricus. The Professors of this Science [of land surveying] are honoured with a more earnest attention than falls to the lot of any other philosophers. Arithmetic, Theoretical Geometry, Astronomy, and Music are discoursed upon to listless audiences, sometimes to empty benches. But the land surveyor is like a judge; the deserted fields become his forum, crowded with eager spectators. You would fancy him a madman when you see him walking along the most devious paths. But in truth he is seeking for the traces of lost facts in rough woods and thickets[322]. He walks not as other men walk. His path is the book from which he reads; he _shows_ what he is saying; he proves what he hath learned; by his steps he divides the rights of hostile claimants; and like a mighty river he takes away the fields of one side to bestow them on the other.

'Wherefore, acting on our instructions, choose such a land surveyor, whose authority may be sufficient to settle this dispute, that the litigants may henceforth cultivate their lands in peace.'

 
3 - 53 KING THEODORIC TO THE ILLUSTRIOUS APRONIANUS, COUNT OF THE PRIVATE DOMAINS: On Water-finders.
'Your Greatness tells us that a water-finder has come to Rome from Africa, where, on account of the dryness of the soil, his art is greatly in request.

'We are glad to hear it. It is a very useful art.

'Signs of the existence of water are the greenness of the grass, the size of the trees, the nature of the plants, reeds, rushes, brambles, willows, poplars, &c. Some discover water by putting out dry wool under a bowl at night. So too, if you see at sunrise a cloud [or gossamer, 'spissitudinem'] of very small flies. A mist rising like a column shows water as deep below as the column rises high above.

'The water-finder will also predict the quality of the water, and so prevent you from wasting labour on a brackish spring. This science was ably treated of by ----[323], and by Marcellus among the Latins. They tell us that waters which gush forth towards the east and south are light and wholesome; that those which emerge towards the north and west are too cold and heavy.

'So then, if the testimonials of the aforesaid water-finder and the results of his indications shall approve themselves to your wisdom, you may pay his travelling expenses and relieve his wants: he having to repay you by his future services. For though Rome itself is so abundantly supplied with aqueducts, there are many suburban places in which his help would be very useful. Associate with him also a mechanician who can sink for and raise the water when he has pointed it out. Rome ought not to lack anything which is an object of desire.'

 
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4 - 1 KING THEODORIC TO HERMINAFRID, KING OF THE THURINGIANS: Marriage of Theodoric's niece to the King of the Thuringians.
'Desiring to unite you to ourselves by the bonds of kindred, we bestow upon you our niece [Amalabirga, daughter of Theodoric's sister; see 'Anon. Valesii' § 70], so that you, who descend from a Royal stock, may now far more conspicuously shine by the splendour of Imperial blood[324]'. [A remarkable passage, as showing that Theodoric did in a sense consider himself to be filling the place of the Emperors of the West.]

The virtues and intellectual accomplishments of the new Queen of the Thuringians are described.

'We gladly acknowledge the price of a favour, in itself beyond price, which, according to the custom of the nations, we have received from your ambassadors: namely, a team of horses, silvery in colour, as wedding-horses should be. Their chests and thighs are suitably adorned with round surfaces of flesh. Their ribs are expanded to a certain width. They are short in the belly. Their heads have a certain resemblance to the stag, the swiftness of which animal they imitate. These horses are gentle from their extreme plumpness; very swift notwithstanding their great bulk; pleasant to look at, still better to use. For they have gentle paces, not fatiguing their riders by insane curvetings. To ride them is repose rather than toil; and being broken-in to a delightful and steady pace, they can keep up their speed, over long distances.

'We too are sending you some presents, but our niece is the fairest present of all. May God bless you with children, so that our lines may be allied in future.'

 
4 - 2 KING THEODORIC TO THE KING OF THE HERULI. [Adopting him as his son by right of arms.]: Herminafrid adopted as 'filius per arma' by Theodoric
'It has been always held amongst the nations a great honour to be adopted as "filius per arma." Our children by nature often disappoint our expectations, but to say that we esteem a man _worthy to be our son_ is indeed praise. As such, after the manner of the nations and in manly fashion, do we now beget you[325].

'We send you horses, spears, and shields, and the rest of the trappings of the warrior; but above all we send you our judgment that you are worthy to be our son[326]. Highest among the nations will you be considered who are thus approved by the mind of Theodoric.

'And though the son should die rather than see his father suffer aught of harm, we in adopting you are also throwing round you the shield of our protection. The Heruli have known the value of Gothic help in old times, and that help will now be yours. A and B, the bearers of these letters, will explain to you in Gothic (patrio sermone) the rest of our message to you[327].

 
4 - 3 0KING THEODORIC TO SENARIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, COMES:Conferring upon him the dignity of 'Comitiva Patrimonii.'.
'The master's fame is enhanced by choosing the right persons for his servants. The Sovereign ought to promote such persons that whenever he condescends to behold them he may feel that his _judicia_[328] have been justified. We therefore hereby bestow upon you, for the fourth Indiction [Sept. 1, 510], the Illustrious dignity of Comes of our Patrimony.'

Services of Senarius as a diplomatist, in standing up against Barbarian Kings and subduing their intellects to the moderate counsels of Theodoric[329].

His success as an advocate[330]. The charm of his pronunciation. His purity of morals; his popularity with high and low. He is exhorted still to cultivate these dispositions, and to win favour for his office by his affable demeanour.

 
4 - 4 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Announcing the promotion of Senarius, conferred in the preceding letter.
Describes the merits of the new Comes, who when young in years but mature in merit had entered the service of the Palace; his diplomatic career[331] and his moderation and reserve in the midst of success, although naturally 'joy is a garrulous thing,' and it is difficult for men who are carrying all before them to restrain the expression of their exaltation.

Compliments to the Senate, who are invited to give a hearty welcome to the new comer.

 
4 - 5 KING THEODORIC TO AMABILIS, VIR DEVOTUS[332] AND COMES: Supply of provisions to famine-stricken Provinces of Gaul.
'Having heard that there is dearth in our Gaulish Provinces we direct your Devotion to take bonds from the shipmasters along the whole western coast of Italy (Lucania, Campania, and Thuscia) that they will go with supplies of food only to the Gauls, having liberty to dispose of their cargoes as may be agreed between buyer and seller. They will find their own profit in this, for there is no better customer for a corn-merchant than a hungry man. He looks on all his other possessions as dross if he can only supply the cravings of necessity. He who is willing to sell to a man in this condition almost seems to be _giving_ him what he needs, and can very nearly ask his own price.'

 
4 - 6 0KING THEODORIC TO SYMMACHUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, PATRICIAN: The sons of Valerian to be detained in Rome.
'The Spectabilis Valerian, who lives at Syracuse, wishes to return thither himself, but that his sons, whom he has brought to Rome for their education, may be detained in that City.

'Let your Magnificence therefore not allow them to leave the aforesaid City till an order has been obtained from us to that effect. Thus will their progress in their studies be assured, and proper reverence be paid to our command. And let none of them think this a burden, which should have been an object of desire[333]. To no one should Rome be disagreeable, for she is the common country of all, the fruitful mother of eloquence, the broad temple of the virtues: it is a striking mark of our favour to assign such a City as a residence to any of our subjects[334].'

 
4 - 7 KING THEODORIC TO SENARIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, COMES PRIVATARUM: Losses by shipwreck to be refunded to those who were sending provisions to Gaul.
'Any calamity which comes upon a man from causes beyond his control ought not to be imputed to him as a fault. The pathetic petition of the Superintendents of Grain[335] informs us that the cargoes which they destined for Gaul have perished at sea.

[Footnote 335: 'Prosecutores frumentorum.' It would seem that these are not merchants supplying the famine-stricken Provinces of Gaul as a private speculation (according to iv. 5), but public officers who have had certain cargoes of corn entrusted to them from the State magazines, and who, but for this letter, would be bound to make good the loss suffered under their management.]

'The framework of the timbers of the ships gaped under the violence of the winds and waves, and from all that overabundance of water nothing remains to them but their tears.

'Let your Sublimity therefore promptly refund to them the proportion (modiatio) which each of them can prove that he has thus lost. It would be cruel to punish them for having merely suffered shipwreck.'

 
4 - 8 KING THEODORIC TO THE HONOURED POSSESSORES AND CURIALES OF FORUM LIVII (FORLI): Transport of timber ordered for Alsuanum.
'You must not think anything which we order hard; for our commands are reasonable, and we know what you ought to do. Your Devotion is therefore to cut timber and transport it to Alsuanum[336], where you will be paid the proper price for it.'

 
4 - 9 KING THEODORIC TO OSUIN, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES.

'Maurentius and Paula, who are left orphans, inform us that their youth and helplessness expose them to the attacks of many unscrupulous persons.

'Let your Sublimity therefore cause it to be known that any suits against them must be prosecuted in our Comitatus, the place of succour for the distressed and of sharp punishment for tricksters.'

 
4 - 10 KING THEODORIC TO JOANNES, SENATOR AND CONSULARIS OF CAMPANIA: The lawless custom of Pignoratio is to be repressed.
[A custom had apparently grown up during the lawless years of the Fifth Century, of litigants helping themselves, during the slow progress of the suit, to a 'material guarantee' from the fields of their opponents. This custom, unknown apparently at the time of the Theodosian Code, was called 'Pignoratio,' and was especially rife in the Provinces of Campania and Samnium.]

'How does peace differ from the confusion of war, if law-suits are to be settled by violence? We hear with displeasure from our Provincials in Campania and Samnium that certain persons there are giving themselves up to the practice of _pignoratio_. And so far has this gone that neighbours club together and transfer their claims to some one person who "pignorates" for the whole of them, thus in fact compelling a man to pay a debt to an entire stranger--a monstrous perversion of all the rules of law, which separates so delicately between the rights even of near relations, and will not allow the son to be sued for the father's debts unless he is the heir, nor the wife for the husband's unless she has succeeded to the estate. Hitherto our ignorance has allowed this lawless practice to exist. Now that we know of it we are determined to suppress it. Therefore, firstly, if any man lays violent hands on any property to secure an alleged claim, he shall at once forfeit that claim [and restore the _pignus_]. Secondly, where one has "pignorated" for another, he shall be compelled to restore twofold the value of that which he has taken. Thirdly, if any offender is so poor and squalid that restitution cannot be compelled from him, he shall be beaten with clubs.'

 
4 - 11 KING THEODORIC TO SENARIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES: Dispute between Possessores and Curiales.
'Let your Magnitude enquire into and decide promptly the dispute between the Possessores and Curiales of Velia.' [A conjectural emendation for _Volienses_.]

 
4 - 12 KING THEODORIC TO MARABAD, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES; AND GEMELLUS, SENATOR: Archotamia's complaint against the extravagant widow of her grandson.
'It is our purpose not only to defend by arms but to govern by just laws the Provinces which God has subjected to us.

'Archotamia, an illustrious lady who has lost her grandson by death, complains that his widow Aetheria, having married again with a certain Liberius, is wasting the property of her children in order to make her new home appear more splendid.

'Let your Sublimities enquire into this matter. After suppressing all violent action[337], placing the holy Gospels in the midst of the Court, and calling in three honourable persons agreed upon by the parties, as assessors, decide with their help upon the matter according to ancient law, due reference being had to the arrangements of modern times.'

 
4 - 13 KING THEODORIC TO SENARIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, COMES PRIVATARUM: Supplies for Colossaeus and his suite.
'Let Colossaeus, who is sent as Governor to Pannonia Sirmiensis, have rations for himself and suite, according to ancient usage. [For his appointment, see Letters iii. 23 and 24.]

'A hungry army cannot be expected to preserve discipline, since the armed man will always help himself to that which he requires. Let him have the chance of buying, that he may not be forced to think what he can plunder. Necessity loves not a law[338], nor is it right to command the many to observe a moderation which even the few can barely practise.'

 
4 - 14 KING THEODORIC TO THE SAJO GESILA: Evasion of land-tax by Goths in Picenum and Thuscia.
'It is a great offence to put off the burden of one's own debts upon other people. That man ought to pay the "tributum" for a property who receives the income of it. But some of the Goths in Picenum and the two Tuscanies[339] are evading the payment of their proper taxes[340]. This vicious practice must be suppressed at once, lest it spread by imitation. If anyone in a spirit of clownish stubbornness shall still refuse to obey our commands as expressed through you, affix the proper notice to his houses and confiscate them, that he who would not pay a small debt may suffer a great loss[341]. None ought to be more prompt in their payments to the exchequer than those [the Goths] who are the receivers of our donative. The sum thus given by our liberality is much more than they could claim as soldiers' pay. In fact _we_ pay them a voluntary tribute by the care which we have of their fortunes.'

 
4 - 15 KING THEODORIC TO BENENATUS, SENATOR: New rowers to be selected. Their qualifications.
'Being informed by the Illustrious and Magnificent Count of the Patrimony that twenty-one of the _Dromonarii_ [rowers in the express-boats] have been removed by the inconvenient incident of death, we hereby charge you to select others to fill their places. But they must be strong men, for the toil of rowing requires powerful arms and stout hearts to battle with the stormy waves. For what is in fact more daring than with one's little bark to enter upon that wide and treacherous sea, which only despair enables a man successfully to combat?'

 
4 - 16 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Arigern entrusted with the charge of the City of Rome.
'Some time ago we committed the government of our new Gaulish Provinces to Arigern, a member of your body, that he might by his firmness and prudence bring about a settlement in that agitated country. This he has accomplished to our entire satisfaction, and, practising the lessons which he learned in your midst, he has also brought back warlike trophies from thence. We now decide to bestow upon him the charge of the Roman order.

'He is to see that the laws are vigorously administered, and that private revenge has no place.

'Receive, O Conscript Fathers, your honoured and venerable member back into your bosom.'

 
4 - 17 KING THEODORIC TO IDA, VIR SUBLIMIS AND DUX: Possessions of the Church of Narbonne to be restored to it.
'We do not wish to disturb anything that has been well settled by a preceding King. Certain possessions of the Church of Narbonne, which were secured to it by grant of the late King Alaric of exalted memory, have been wrongfully wrested from it. Do you now restore these. As you are illustrious in war, so be also excellent in "civilitas." The wrong-doers will not dare to resist a man of your well-known bravery.'

 
4 - 18 KING THEODORIC TO ANNAS, SENATOR AND COMES: A priestly Ghoul.
'Enquire if the story which is told us be true, namely that the Presbyter Laurentius has been groping for fatal riches among human corpses. An odious inversion of his functions, that he who should preach peace to the living has been robbing the dead, and that hands which have been touched with the oil of consecration should have been grasping at unholy gains, instead of distributing his own honestly acquired substance to the poor. If after diligent examination you find that the charge is true, you must make him disgorge the gold. As for punishment, for the sake of the honour of the priesthood we leave that to a higher Power[342].'

 
4 - 19 KING THEODORIC TO GEMELLUS, SENATOR: The Siliquaticum not to be levied on corn, wine, and oil.

'The Prince should try to remedy the afflictions of his subjects. Therefore, for the present time [probably on account of the scarcity in Gaul], we decree that the tax of Siliquaticum, which Antiquity ordained should be levied on all buyings and sellings, shall not be levied on corn, wine, and oil. We hope thus to stimulate trade, and to benefit not only the Provincials, who are our chief care, but also the merchants. Let the ship that traverses the seas not fear our harbours. Often the sailor dreads the rapacity of the collector of customs more than the danger of shipwreck. It shall not be so now.'

 
4 - 20 KING THEODORIC TO GEBERICH, SENATOR: Land taken from the Church to be restored to it.
'If we are willing to enrich the Church by our own liberality, _à fortiori_ will we not allow it to be despoiled of the gifts received from pious princes in the past.

'The supplication of the Venerable Bishop Constantius informs us that a _jugum_ [= jugerum, about two-thirds of an English acre] of land so bestowed on the "sacrosanct" Church has been taken away from her, and is unlawfully held by the despoiler.

'See that right is done, and that the Church has her own restored to her without any diminution.'

 
4 - 21 KING THEODORIC TO GEMELLUS, SENATOR: Promptness and integrity required.
'Be prompt in the execution of our orders. No one should think our commands harsh, since they are excused by the necessity of the times. [Reject the thought of all unjustly acquired gains, for] you are sure to receive from our favour all that you seem to lose by not yielding to temptation.'

 
 
4 - 23 KING THEODORIC TO ARIGERN, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES: Roman Senators accused of magic.
These two letters relate to the affair of Basilius[343] and Praetextatus, men of high rank in Rome. They are accused of practising magical arts, and in the interval between the first and second letters they escape from prison by taking advantage of the insanity of the gaoler.

Theodoric, who says that he will not suffer any such acts of treason against the Divine Majesty, and that it is not lawful for Christian times to deal in magical arts, orders the recapture of the offenders, who are to be handed over to a Quinque-viral Board, consisting of the Patricians Symmachus, Decius, Volusianus, and Caelianus, with the Illustrious Maximian, and by them examined; if guilty to be punished (probably with confiscation and exile); if innocent, of course to be discharged[344].

 
4 - 24 KING THEODORIC TO ELPIDIUS, DEACON [of Spoleto]: Architectural restoration at Spoleto.
Gives leave to pull down a _porticus_ behind the Baths of Turasius at Spoleto, and to build some new edifice [perhaps a church] on its site and on the site of a yard (areola) adjoining it, on condition only that the building thus pulled down is of no public utility.

Reflections on the duty of architectural restoration.

 
4 - 25 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, PRAEFECTUS URBIS: Petrus to be inscribed as Senator.
'Ambition ennobles man, and he who has aimed when young at high honours is often stimulated to lead a worthy life by the fact of having obtained them. We therefore look favourably on the petition of Petrus, illustrious by descent, and in gravity of character already a Senator, to enter the Sacred Order (the Senate); and we authorise your Illustrious Magnificence to inscribe his name, according to ancient custom, in the album of that body.'

 
4 - 26 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE CITIZENS OF MARSEILLES: Taxes remitted for a year.
Confirms all privileges and immunities granted by previous Princes, and remits the taxes (censum) for one year, a boon which they had not dared to ask for. 'For that is perfect _pietas_, which before it is bent by prayer, knows how to consider the weary ones.'

 
 
4 - 28 KING THEODORIC TO DUDA, SENATOR AND COMES: Petrus assaulted by the Sajo who was assigned for his protection.
Both letters relate to the affair of Petrus (a Vir Spectabilis, and probably the same whose admission to the Senate is ordered by iv. 25).

This Roman nobleman, according to a usage common under Theodoric's government, has had the Gothic Sajo Amara assigned to him as his Defensor. Amara, by an inversion of his functions, which the letter bitterly laments and upbraids, has turned upon his _protegé_ and even used personal violence towards him. He has drawn a sword and wounded him in the hand; and nothing but the fact that Petrus was sheltered by a door saved him from losing his hand altogether.

Yet, notwithstanding this assault, Amara has had the audacity to claim from his victim 'commodi nomine,' the usual payment made by the defended to the defender.

The first letter decrees that this shall be refunded twofold, and assigns Tezutzat instead of Amara to the office of Defender, warning him not to follow the evil example of his predecessor.

The second assigns to Duda the task of enquiring into the alleged assault and punishing it with the sword[346].

 
4 - 29 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, PRAEFECT OF THE CITY: Official tardiness rebuked.
A sharp rebuke to him for having (if the _suggestio_ of the Clarissimus Armentarius be correct) so long delayed, it is to be feared with a corrupt motive, complying with the instructions of the King to do justice in some case (not described) in which the honour of the Senate is concerned. As head of the Senate he ought to have been eager to examine into it, without any prompting from his master.

 
4 - 30 KING THEODORIC TO ALBINUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN: Workshops may be erected above the Porticus Curba, by the Roman Forum.
'Those whom the Republic has honoured should in their turn bring honour to the City. We are therefore gratified by receiving your supplication for leave to erect workshops[347] above the Porticus Curba, which being situated near the Domus Palmata, shuts in the Forum in comely fashion "in modum areae." We like the plan. The range of private dwellings will thereby be extended. A look of cheerful newness will be given to the old walls; and the presence of residents in the building will tend to preserve it from further decay. You have our permission and encouragement to proceed, if the proposed erections do not in any way interfere with public convenience or the beauty of the City.'

 
4 - 31 KING THEODORIC TO AEMILIANUS, VIR VENERABILIS, BISHOP: An aqueduct to be promptly finished.
'Wise men should finish what they have begun, and not incur the reproach which attends half-done work.

'Let your Holiness therefore promptly complete what by our authority you so well began in the matter of the aqueduct, and thus most fitly provide water for your thirsting flock, imitating by labour the miracle of Moses, who made water gush forth from the flinty rock.'

 
4 - 32 KING THEODORIC TO DUDA THE SAJO.
'We are anxious strictly to obey the laws, and to take no advantage over our subjects in courts of justice. If a man knows that he can get his own by legal process, even from the Sovereign, he is the less likely to seek it by the armed hand. The memorandum of Marinus informs us that the property of Tupha was long ago mortgaged to a certain Joannes[348]. But since it is quite clear that the property of a proscribed man belongs to our fiscus, we desire you to summon the widow of this Joannes and his secretary Januarius, "moderata executione."

[Footnote 348: 'Marini relatione comperimus res Tuphae apud Joannem quondam sub emissione chirographi fuisse depositas.']

'If they acknowledge that they have no right to the property let them at once restore it; but if not, let them come before the _Consularis_ of Campania and establish their right according to course of law.

'But let all be done without loss or prejudice to the rights of innocent persons. If any such charge be established against you, _you_ will become the offender in our eyes.'

 
4 - 33 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE JEWS OF GENOA: Privileges of the Jews confirmed.
'The true mark of _civilitas_ is the observance of law. It is this which makes life in communities possible, and which separates man from the brutes. We therefore gladly accede to your request that all the privileges which the foresight of antiquity conferred upon the Jewish customs shall be renewed to you[349], for in truth it is our great desire that the laws of the ancients shall be kept in force to secure the reverence due to us[350]. Everything which has been found to conduce to _civilitas_ should be held fast with enduring devotion.'

 
4 - 34 KING THEODORIC TO DUDA THE SAJO: Buried treasure to be reclaimed for the State.
'It is the part of true prudence to recall to the uses of commerce "the talent hidden in the earth." We therefore direct you, by this "moderata jussio," where you hear of buried treasures to proceed to the spot with suitable witnesses and reclaim for the public Treasury either gold or silver, abstaining, however, from actually laying hands on the ashes of the dead[351]. The dead can do nothing with treasure, and it is not greedy to take away what the holder of it can never mourn the loss of.

[Footnote 351: How this was to be done is not quite clear, since it is plain that this letter is really and chiefly an order for rifling _sepulchres_ in search of buried treasure.]

'Eacus is said to have discovered the use of gold, and Indus, King of the Scythians, that of silver. They are extremely useful metals.'

 
4 - 35 KING THEODORIC TO THE REPRESENTATIVES (ACTORES) OF ALBINUS: An extravagant minor. .
'It has been wisely decided by Antiquity that minors cannot make a binding contract, for they are naturally the prey of every sharper. You allege that your _patronus_ [Albinus] is under age, that he is heaping up expenses instead of property, and that his raw boyhood does not know what is really for his benefit. If this be correct, and be legally proved, he is entitled to a _restitutio in integrum_' [a suit commenced through these Actores for the quashing of the contracts which have been fraudulently made with the minor].

 
4 - 36 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT. A.D. 509-510: Remission of taxes for Provincials of Cottian Alps.
'A wise ruler will always lessen the weight of taxation when his subjects are weighed down by temporary poverty. Therefore let your Magnificence remit to the Provincials of the Cottian Alps the _as publicum_ for this year [the third Indiction], in consideration of their losses by the passage of our army. [The army of Ibbas, on its march in 408 to fight Clovis, after the fall of the Visigothic Monarchy.] True, that army went forth with shouts of concord to _liberate_ Gaul. But so a river bursting forth may irrigate and fertilise a whole country, and yet destroy the increase of that particular channel in which its waters run.

'We have earned new subjects by that campaign: we do not wish them to suffer loss by it. Our own heart whispers to us the request which the subjects dare not utter to their Prince.'

 
4 - 37 KING THEODORIC TO THE ILLUSTRIOUS WOMAN THEODAGUNDA: Theodagunda is admonished to do justice to Renatus.
Warns Theodagunda [apparently a member of the royal family and governing some Province; but what place could she hold in the Roman official hierarchy?], that she must emulate the virtue of her ancestors and show prompt obedience to the royal commands. 'The lamentable petition of Renatus states that, after judgment given in his favour by the King's Court, he is still harassed by the litigation (not in the way of regular appeal) of Inquilina, who appears to be not so much desirous of victory as anxious to ruin his adversary.' [Notwithstanding the form of the name I think Inquilina is male, not female.]

'You must see that this is put right at once.'

 
4 - 38 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Taxes must be reduced to the figure at which they stood in the days of Odoacer.
'The inhabitants of Gravasi (?) and Ponto (?) complain that they have been overloaded with taxes by the Assessors (discussores) Probus and Januarius. They have bad land, and say that they really cannot cope with the taxes imposed upon them [at the last Indiction?]. The former practice is to be reverted to, and they are not to be called upon to pay more than they did in the days of Odoacer.' [An evidence that in one case at least the fiscal yoke of Odoacer was lighter than that of his successor.]

 
4 - 39 KING THEODORIC TO THEODAHAD, VIR ILLUSTRIS [AND NEPHEW OF THE KING]: The encroachments of Theodahad repressed.
'Avarice, which Holy Writ declares to be "the root of all evil," is a vulgar vice which you, our kinsman, a man of Amal blood, whose family is known to be royal, are especially bound to avoid[352].

[Footnote 352: 'Amali sanguinis virum nos decet vulgare desiderium: quia genus suum conspicit esse purpuratum.']

'The Spectabilis Domitius complains to us that such and such portions of his property have been seized by you with the strong hand, without any pretence of establishing a legal claim to them.

'We send the Sajo Duda to you, and order you on his arrival[353], without any delay, to restore the property which you have taken possession of, with all the moveables of which you have despoiled it.

[Footnote 353: 'Si momenti tempora suffragantur.' What is the meaning of this limitation?]

'If you have any claim to make to the lands in question, send a person fully informed of the facts to our Comitatus, and there let the case be fairly heard.

'A high-born man should ever act according to well-ordered _civilitas_. Any neglect of this principle brings upon him odium, proportioned to the oppression which the man of humbler rank conceives himself to have suffered at his hands.'

 
4 - 40 KING THEODORIC TO THE REPRESENTATIVES (ACTORES) OF PROBINUS: The affair of Agapeta. Basilius, her husband, ordered to plead.
Recurs to the case of the Possessio Areciretina, which Agapeta, the wife of Basilius, had given (or sold) to Probinus, and which Probinus was commanded to restore. (See Letters ii. 10 and 11.)

The petition, now presented by the representatives of Probinus, puts a somewhat different face upon the matter, and seems to show that the sale by Agapeta (notwithstanding her melancholy condition of fatuity and vice) was a _bonâ fide_ one, for sufficient consideration.

Her husband Basilius is now ordered to reply to the pleadings of the opposite party, either at the King's Comitatus, or in some local court of competent jurisdiction. The King's Comitatus is meant to be a blessing to his subjects, and recourse to it is not made compulsory where, on account of distance, the suitor would rather be excused from resorting to it.

 
4 - 41 KING THEODORIC TO JOANNES, ARCH-PHYSICIAN: An unjust judgment against Joannes reversed.
'A King should delight to succour the oppressed.

'You inform us that, by the devices of the Spectabilis Vivianus and his superior knowledge of the laws, an unjust judgment was obtained against you, in default, in the Court of the Vicarius of the City of Rome: that Vivianus himself has now renounced the world, repents of his injustice to you, and interposes no obstacle to the restitution of your rights. We therefore (if your statements shall prove to be correct) quash the sentence against you, restore you to your country and your property, and that you may be preserved from future molestation, founded on the old sentence against you, we assign you to the guardianship (tuitio) of the Patrician Albinus, without prejudice to the laws (salvis legibus).

'We wish that nothing contrary to _civilitas_ should be done, since our daily labour is for the repose of all.' [I presume that this letter is in fact an edict for 'Restitutio in integrum.']

 
4 - 42 KING THEODORIC TO ARGOLICUS, PRAEFECT OF THE CITY: The sons of Velusian to have their property restored to them.
'Under a good King the loss even of a father should be less felt than with a different ruler, for the King is the father of his people.

'The petition of Marcian and Maximius, sons of Velusian (Patrician and Magnificus), sets forth that they lost their father at Easter; that thus the time of joy to all Christians became to them a season of sorrow; that while they were immersed in their grief and incapable of attending to their affairs, "the tower of the circus and the place of the amphitheatre[354]," which had belonged to their illustrious father, were by some heartless intriguer wrested from them, under the authority of the Praefect.

[Footnote 354: Can this be the Amphitheatrum Castrense?]

'Be pleased to enquire into this matter, and if those places truly belonged to Velusian, restore them to his sons. We wish to cherish rather than oppress the sons of illustrious men, who are the germ of our future Senate.'

 
4 - 43 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Punishment of incendiaries who have burned a Jewish Synagogue.
[On the burning of the Jewish synagogue. This synagogue of the Jews was in the Trastevere. See Gregorovius i. 296-298 for a description of it. I do not know on what authority he assigns 521 for the date of the tumult in which it was burned.]

'The propriety of manners which is characteristic of the City of Rome must be upheld. To fall into the follies of popular tumult, and to set about burning their own City, is not like the Roman disposition[355].

[Footnote 355: 'Levitates quippe seditionum et ambire propriae civitatis incendium, non est velle Romanum.']

'But we are informed by Count Arigern[356] that the populace of Rome, enraged at the punishment inflicted on some Christian servants who had murdered their Jewish masters, has risen in fury and burned their synagogue to the ground[357], idly venting on innocent buildings their anger against the men who used them.

[Footnote 356: It happens that one of the letters addressed to Count Arigern also refers to a Jewish synagogue. See iii. 45.]

[Footnote 357: 'Quod in dominorum caede proruperit servilis audacia: in quibus cum fuisset pro districtione publicâ resecatum, statim plebis inflammata contentio synagogam temerario duxerunt incendio concremandam.' The above is Gregorovius' explanation of the somewhat enigmatical language of Cassiodorus.]

'Be pleased to enquire into this matter, and severely punish the authors of the tumult, who are probably few in number.

'At the same time enquire into the complaints which are brought against the Jews, and if you find that there is any foundation for them, punish accordingly.'

 
4 - 44 KING THEODORIC TO THE VENERABLE ANTONIUS, BISHOP OF POLA: Bishop Antonius called upon to do justice to Stephanus.
'It is an invidious task to have to listen to complaints against the revered ministers of the Church.

'But the petition of Stephanus sets forth that a property, which belonged to him before the time of your predecessor, has, within the last nine months, wrongfully, and in defiance of _civilitas_, been seized by the officers of your church. If this be so, we desire you, as a matter of justice, to correct what your familiars have done amiss, and restore it to him without delay. But if you dispute his title, send a properly instructed person to plead the cause in our Comitatus.

'You will be better off by having the matter enquired into and settled, than if the complaints of Stephanus had never come to a hearing[358].'

 
4 - 45 KING THEODORIC TO THE COMITES, DEFENSORES, AND CURIALES OF TICINUM (PAVIA): The Heruli to be forwarded on their way to Ravenna.
[It is not easy to see why this order should be addressed to the inhabitants of Ticinum. Had the Heruli crossed the Alps by some pass near the modern Simplon?]

'We have ordered the Heruli, who are suppliants to us, to come to our Comitatus at Ravenna.

'Provide them promptly with ships of provisions for five days, that they may at once see the difference between Italy and their own hungry country[359].'

 
4 - 46 KING THEODORIC TO MARABAD, VIR ILLUSTRIS: The case of the wife of Liberius to be reheard.
'The Spectabilis Liberius[360] complains that his wife has had an unjust judgment given against her in your Court. Try the case over again, associating with yourself arbitrators chosen by both parties. If it cannot so be ended, let them appoint properly instructed persons to represent them at our Comitatus, if they cannot come themselves.'

 
4 - 47 KING THEODORIC TO GUDISAL THE SAJO: Abuses of the Cursus Publicus.
'If the public post-horses (veredi) are not allowed proper intervals of rest they will soon be worn out.

'We are informed by our _legati_ that these horses are constantly employed by persons who have no right to use them.

'You are therefore to reside in Rome, and to put yourself in constant communication with the officers of the Praefectus Praetorio and the Magister Officiorum, so as not to allow any to leave the City using the horses of the _Cursus Publicus_ except the regularly commissioned agents of those two functionaries. Anyone transgressing is to pay a fine of 100 solidi (£60) per horse; not that the injury to the animal is represented by so high a figure, but in order to punish his impertinence. Our Sajones, when sent with a commission, are to go straight to the mark and return, not to make pleasure-tours at the public expense; and if they disobey this order, they are to pay the same fine as that just mentioned.

'Moreover, the extra horses (parhippi) are not to be weighted with a load of more than 100 lbs. For we wish our messengers[361] to travel in light marching order, not to make of their journey a regular domestic migration.

[Footnote 361: 'Mittendarii.' A 'Scrinium Mittendariorum' formed part of the staff of the Count of Sacred Largesses. See Theodosian Code vi. 30. 7.]

'Cranes, when they are going to cross the sea, clasp little pebbles with their claws, in order to steady without overweighting themselves. Why cannot those who are sent on public errands follow so good an example? Every transport master[362] who violates this rule by loading a horse with more than 100 lbs. shall pay 50 solidi (£30).

[Footnote 362: 'Catabulensis.' See iii. 10.]

'All fines levied under this edict are to go to the benefit of the postal-servants[363], and thus the evil will, as we so often see in human affairs, furnish its own remedy.'

 
4 - 48 KING THEODORIC TO EUSEBIUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS: Honourable retirement of Eusebius.
'After the worries of the noisy City, and the heavy burden of your official duties, your Greatness is longing to taste the sweetness of country life. When therefore you have finished your present duties, we grant you by our authority a holiday of eight months in the charming recesses of Lucania [near Cassiodorus' own country], to be reckoned from the time when by Divine [royal?] favour you depart from the City. When those months are at an end, return with speed, much missed as you will be, to your Roman habitation, to the assembly of the nobles, and to social intercourse of a kind that is worthy of your character.'

 
4 - 49 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE PROVINCIALS AND THE LONG-HAIRED MEN[364], THE DEFENSORES AND THE CURIALES RESIDING IN SUAVIA[365]: Fridibad to be Governor of Suavia, and to punish freebooters.
'The King's orders must be vigorously executed, that terror may be struck into the hearts of the lawless, and that those who have suffered violence may begin to hope for better days. Often the threat of punishment does more to quiet a country than punishment itself. Therefore, under Divine guidance, we have appointed Fridibad to be your Governor.

'He will punish cattle-lifters with due severity, will cut off murderers, condemn thieves, and render you, who are now torn by presumptuous iniquity, safe from the daring attempts of villains. Live like a settled people; live like men who have learned the lessons of morality; let neither nationality nor rank be alleged as an excuse from these duties. If any man gives himself up to wicked courses, he must needs undergo chastisement.'

 
4 - 50 KING THEODORIC TO FAUSTUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Remission of taxes for Campanians who have suffered from an eruption of Vesuvius.
'The Campanians complain that their fields have been devastated by an eruption of Vesuvius, and ask in consequence for a remission of tribute. [This eruption is assigned--I do not know on what authority--to the year 512[366].]

'Let your Greatness send men of proved integrity to the territories of Neapolis and Nola, who may examine the ravaged lands for themselves, and proportion the relief granted, to the amount of damage done in each case.

'That Province is visited at intervals by this terrible calamity, as if to mar its otherwise perfect happiness. There is one favourable feature in the visitation. It does not come wholly unawares. For some time before, the mountain groans with the strife of Nature going on inside it, and it seems as if an angry spirit within would terrify all the neighbourhood by his mighty roar. Then the air is darkened by its foul exhalations; hot ashes scudding along the sea, a shower of drops of dust upon the land, tell to all Italy, to the transmarine Provinces, to the world, from what calamity Campania is suffering[367].

'Go nearer: you will see as it were rivers of dust flowing, and glowing streams of barren sand moving over the country. You see and wonder: the furrows of the fields are suddenly lifted to a level with the tops of the trees; the country, which but now was dressed in a robe of gladsome greenness, is laid waste by sudden and mournful heat. And yet, even those sandy tracts of pumice-stone which the mountain vomits forth, dry and burnt up as they appear, have their promise of fertility. There are germs within them which will one day spring to life, and re-clothe the mountain side which they have wasted.

'How strange that one mountain alone should thus terrify the whole world! Other mountains may be seen with silently glowing summits; this alone announces itself to distant lands by darkened skies and changed air. So it still goes on, shedding its dusty dews over the land; ever parting with its substance, yet a mountain still undiminished in height and amplitude. Who that sees those mighty blocks in the plain would believe that they had boiled over from the depths of that distant hill, that they had been tossed like straws upon the wind by the angry spirit of the mountain?

'Therefore let your Prudence so manage the enquiry that those who have really suffered damage shall be relieved, while no room is left for fraud.'

 
4 - 51 KING THEODORIC TO SYMMACHUS, PATRICIAN: Commends the public spirit of Symmachus, as shown in the restoration of Pompey's theatre.
Commends him for the diligence and skill with which he has decorated Rome with new buildings--especially in the suburbs, which no one would distinguish from the City except for the occasional glimpses of pleasant fields; and still more for his restoration of the massive ruins of past days[369], chiefly the theatre of Pompeius.

[Footnote 369: We have here a striking description of the massive strength of the public buildings of Rome: '[Videmus] caveas illas saxis pendentibus apsidatas ita juncturis absconditis in formas pulcherrimas convenisse, ut cryptas magis excelsi montis crederes quam aliquid fabricatum esse judicares.']

As the letter is addressed to a learned man, it seems a suitable opportunity to explain why Antiquity reared this mighty pile. Accordingly a very long digression follows on the origin, progress, and decline of Tragedy, Comedy, and Pantomime.

It is remarked incidentally that Pompeius seems to have derived his appellation _Magnus_ chiefly from the building of this wonderful theatre.

The expense which Symmachus has been put to in these vast works is to be refunded to him by the _Praepositus Sacri Cubiculi_, that he may still have the glory of the work, but that the King may have done his due part in preserving the memorials of Antiquity.

 
5
5 - 1 KING THEODORIC TO THE KING OF THE VANDALS: The King of the Vandals is thanked for his presents.
'The swords which you have sent us are most beautiful: so sharp that they will cut other weapons; so bright that they reflect with a sort of iron light[371] the face of the beholder; with the two blades descending to their edges with such absolute equality of slope, that you would fancy them the result of the furnace rather than of the whetstone[372]; in the middle, between the blades, channels carved which are filled in with beautiful enamel of various colours[373].

'Along with these arms you have also sent us musical instruments of ebony, and slave boys of beautiful whiteness.

'We thank you heartily, send by A and B, our ambassadors, presents of equal value; and hope that mutual concord will always unite our States.'

 
5 - 2 KING THEODORIC TO THE HAESTI: The Haesti, dwellers by the Baltic. Their present of amber.
'It is gratifying to us to know that you have heard of our fame, and have sent ambassadors who have pressed through so many strange nations to seek our friendship.

'We have received the amber which you have sent us. You say that you gather this lightest of all substances from the shores of the ocean, but how it comes thither you know not. But, as an author named Cornelius [Tacitus] informs us, it is gathered in the innermost islands of the ocean, being formed originally of the juice of a tree (whence its name _succinum_[375]), and gradually hardened by the heat of the sun.

'Thus it becomes an exuded metal, a transparent softness, sometimes blushing with the colour of saffron, sometimes glowing with flame-like clearness[376]. Then, gliding down to the margin of the sea, and further purified by the rolling of the tides, it is at length transported to your shores to be cast up upon them. We have thought it better to point this out to you, lest you should imagine that your supposed secrets have escaped our knowledge.

'We send you some presents by our ambassadors, and shall be glad to receive further visits from you by the road which you have thus opened up, and to show you future favours.'

 
 
5 - 4 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Honoratus, brother of Decoratus, is made Quaestor.
The usual pair of letters on the promotion of Honoratus to the Quaestorship. He succeeds his brother Decoratus, whose early death Theodoric regrets. The date of the letters is the Third Indiction, September 1, 509.

The writer remarks on the prophetic instinct[377] of the parents, who named these two sons, destined to future eminence, Decoratus and Honoratus. Decoratus was originally an advocate at Rome. His services were often sought by men of Consular rank, and before his admission to the Senate he had had a Patrician for his client in a very celebrated case[378].

When he became Quaestor he distinguished himself by his excellent qualities. 'He stood beside us, under the light of our Genius, bold but reverent; silent at the right time, fluent when there was need of fluency. He kept our secrets as if he had forgotten them; he remembered every detail of our orders as if he had written them down. Thus was he ever an eminent lightener of our labours[379].'

The past career of the younger brother, Honoratus, who has been advocate at Spoleto, and has had to contend with the corrupt tendencies of Provincial judges, full of their little importance, and removed from the wholesome control which the opinion of the Senate exercised upon them at Rome, is then sketched; and the hope is expressed that, in the words of the Virgilian quotation[380], this bough upon the family tree will be found as goodly as that which it has untimely lost.

The letter to the Senate has an interesting passage on the duties and responsibilities of the Quaestor.

'It is only men whom we consider to be of the highest learning that we raise to the dignity of the Quaestorship, such men as are fitted to be interpreters of the laws and sharers of our counsels. This is an honour which neither riches nor high birth by itself can procure, only learning joined with prudence. In granting all other dignities we confer favours, but from the holder of this we ever receive them. He is favoured to have a share in our anxieties; he enters in by the door of our thoughts; he is intimately acquainted with the breast in which the cares of the whole State are weighed. Think what judgment you ought to form of a man who is partaker of such a confidence. From him we require skill in the laws; to him flow together all the prayers of all suitors, and (a thing more precious than any treasure) to him is committed our own reputation for _civilitas_. Under a just Quaestor the mind of an innocent man is at rest: only the wicked become anxious as to the success of their evil designs; and thus the bad lose their hope of plunder, while more earnestness is shown in the practice of virtue. It is his to safeguard the just rights of all men: temperate in expenditure, lavish in his zeal for justice, incapable of deception, prompt in succour. He serves that Sovereign mind before which all bow: through his lips must he speak who has not an equal in the land.'

 
5 - 5 KING THEODORIC TO THE SAJO MANNILA: Abuses of the Cursus Publicus.
Repeats the injunctions given in Letter iv. 47 against improper use of the public post-horses, and overloading of the extra horses. The fines imposed are the same as in that letter [with the addition of a fine of two ounces of gold (about £6 10s.) for overloading]; the examples from Natural History are similar. 'The very bird when weighted with a load flies slowly. Ships though they cannot feel their toils, yet move tardily when they are filled with cargo. What can the poor quadruped do when pressed by too great burden? It succumbs.'

But apparently this rule against overloading is not to apply to Praepositi (Provincial Governors?), since 'reverenda antiquitas' has given them special rights over the _Cursus Publicus_.

 
 
5 - 7 KING THEODORIC TO JOANNES, VIR CLARISSIMUS, ARCARIUS [TREASURER]e: Default in payments to Treasury made by Thomas. His property assigned to his son-in-law Joannes.
'The _Vir Honestus_, Thomas, has long been a defaulter (reliquator) in respect of the Indictions payable for certain farms which he has held under the King's house in Apulia[382], and this default has now reached the sum of 10,000 solidi (£6,000). Repeatedly summoned to pay, he always procrastinates, and we can get no satisfaction out of him. The petition of Joannes, who is son-in-law to Thomas, informs us that he is willing to pay the 10,000 solidi due, if we will make over to him the said farms, and all the property of his father-in-law. This we therefore now do, reserving to Thomas the right to pay the debt at any time before the next Kalends of September, and thus to redeem his property. Failing such payment, the property is to pass finally into the hands of Joannes, on his paying the 10,000 solidi to the Illustrious Count of the Patrimony [possibly Stabularius].

[Footnote 382: 'Thomatem domus nostrae certa praedia suscepisse sed eum male administrando suscepta usque ad decem millia solidorum de Indictionibus illa atque illa reliquatorem publicis rationibus extitisse.' It is not quite clear whether the debt is due as what we should call rent or as land-tax. Perhaps the debt had accumulated under both heads.]

'It may be some little consolation to Thomas to reflect that after all it is his son-in-law who enters into possession of his goods.'

 
5 - 8 KING THEODORIC TO ANASTASIUS THE CONSULAR: Transport of marble from Faenza to Ravenna.
'We rely upon your Sublimity's zeal and prudence to see that the required blocks of marble are forwarded from Faventia (Faenza) to Ravenna, without any extortion from private individuals; so that, on the one hand, our desire for the adornment of that city may be gratified, and on the other, there may be no cause for complaint on the part of our subjects.'

 
5 - 9 KING THEODORIC TO THE POSSESSORES OF FELTRIA: New city to be built in district of Trient.
'We have ordered the erection of a new city in the territory of Tridentum (Trient). As the work is great and the inhabitants few, we order you all to assist and build each your appointed length (pedatura) of wall, for which you will receive suitable pay.'

[This use of the word _pedatura_ is found in Vegetius, 'Epitoma Rei Militaris' iii. 8, and is illustrated by the centurial stones on the two great Roman walls in Britain, recording the number of feet accomplished by each century of soldiers (See 'Archaeologia Aeliana,' vol. ix. p. 28; paper by Mr. Clayton).]

'None, not even the servants of the royal house (divina domus), are excepted from this order.'

 
5 - 10 KING THEODORIC TO THE GEPIDAE, ON THEIR MARCH TO GAUL: Payment to Gepidae on their march to Gaul.
'We desire that our soldiers should always be well paid, and that they should never become the terror of the country which they are ordered to defend. Do you therefore, Sajo Veranus, cause the Gepid troops whom we have ordered to come to the defence of Gaul, to march in all peace and quietness through Venetia and Liguria.

'You Gepidae shall receive three solidi (£1 16s.) per week; and we trust that thus supplied you will everywhere buy your provisions, and not take them by force.

'We generally give the soldiers their pay in kind, but in this case, for obvious reasons, we think it better to pay them in money, and let them buy for themselves.

'If their waggons are becoming shaky with the long journey, or their beasts of burden weary, let them exchange for sound waggons and fresh beasts with the inhabitants of the country, but on such terms that the latter shall not regret the transaction.'

 
5 - 11 KING THEODORIC TO THEODAHAD, VIR ILLUSTRIS [NEPHEW OF THE KING]: Avarice and injustice of Theodahad.
'If all are bound to seek justice and to avoid ignoble gains, most especially are they thus bound who pride themselves on their close relationship to us.

'The heirs of the Illustrious Argolicus [probably the Praefect of Rome] and the Clarissimus Amandianus complain that the estate[384] of Palentia, which we generously gave them to console them for the loss of the Casa Arbitana, has been by your servants, for no cause, unbecomingly invaded; and thus you, who should have shown an example of glorious moderation, have caused the scandal of high-handed spoliation. Wherefore, if this be true, let your Greatness at once restore what has been taken away; and if you consider that you have any claims on the land, come and assert them in our Comitatus. Even success yonder is injurious to your fame; but here, after full trial of the case and hearing of witnesses, no one will believe that any injustice has been done if your cause should triumph.'

 
5 - 12 KING THEODORIC TO EUTROPIUS AND ACRETIUS: Commissariat.
'We rely upon you to collect the prescribed rations and deliver them to the soldiers. It is most important that they should be regularly supplied, and that there should be no excuse for pillage, so hard to check when once an army has begun to practise it.'

 
5 - 13 KING THEODORIC TO SEVERI(A)NUS[385], VIR ILLUSTRIS (514-515): Financial abuses in Suavia.
'We send you to redress the long-standing grievances of the Possessores of the Province of Suavia, to which we have not yet been able to apply a remedy.

'(1) It appears that some of the chief Possessores are actually making a profit out of the taxes, imposing heavy burdens on their poorer neighbours and not honestly accounting for the receipts to us. See that this is put right, that the land-tax (assis[386] publicus) is fairly and equitably reimposed according to the ability of each Possessor, and that those who have been oppressing their neighbours heal the wounds which they have made.

'(2) See also that a strict account is rendered by all Defensores, Curiales, and Possessores of any receipts on behalf of the public Treasury. If a Possessor can show that he paid his tax (tributarius solidus) for the now expired eighth Indiction (A.D. 514-515), and the money has not reached our Treasury, find out the defaulter and punish his crime.

'(3) Similarly with sums disbursed by one of the clerks of our Treasury[387], for the relief of the Province, which have not reached their destination.

'(4) Men who were formerly Barbarians[388], who have married Roman wives and acquired property in land, are to be compelled to pay their Indictions and other taxes to the public Treasury just like any other Provincials.

'(5) Judges are to visit each town (municipium) once in the year, and are not entitled to claim from such towns more than three days' maintenance. Our ancestors wished that the circuits of the Judges should be a benefit, not a burden, to the Provincials.

'(6) It is alleged that some of the servants of the Count of the Goths and of the Vice-dominus (?) have levied black-mail on some of the Provincials. Property so taken must be at once restored and the offenders punished.

'(7) Enter all your proceedings under this commission in official registers (polyptycha), both for your own protection and for the sake of future reference, to prevent the recurrence of similar abuses.'

 
5 - 14

A long and interesting letter, but with some obscure passages.

 
5 - 15 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE POSSESSORES IN SUAVIA: On the same subject.
'Although our Comitatus is always ready to redress the grievances of our subjects, yet, on account of the length of the journey from your Province hither, we have thought good to send the Illustrious and Magnificent Severinus to you to enquire into your complaints on the spot. He is a man fully imbued with our own principles of government, and he has seen how greatly we have at heart the administration of justice. We therefore doubt not that he will soon put right whatever has been done wrong in your Province; and we have published our "oracles" [the previous letter, containing Severinus' patent of appointment], that all may know upon what principles he is to act, and that those who have grievances against the present functionaries may learn their rights.'

 
5 - 16 KING THEODORIC TO ABUNDANTIUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Formation of a navy.
'By Divine inspiration we have determined to raise a navy which may both ensure the arrival of the cargoes of public corn and may, if need be, combat the ships of an enemy. For, that Italy, a country abounding in timber, should not have a navy of her own hath often stricken us with regret.

'Let your Greatness therefore give directions for the construction of 1,000 _dromones_ (swift cutters). Wherever cypresses and pines are found near to the sea-shore, let them be bought at a suitable price.

'Then as to the levy of sailors: any fitting man, if a slave, must be hired of his master, or bought at a reasonable price. If free, he is to receive 5 solidi (£3) as donative, and will have his rations during the term of service.

'Even those who were slaves are to be treated in the same way, "since it is a kind of freedom to serve the Ruler of the State[389];" and are to receive, according to their condition, two or three solidi (£1 4s. or £1 16s.) of bounty money[390].

'Fishermen, however, are not to be enlisted in this force, since we lose with regret one whose vocation it is to provide us with luxuries; and moreover one kind of training is required for him who has to face the stormy wind, and another for him who need only fish close to shore.'

 
5 - 17 KING THEODORIC TO ABUNDANTIUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: same subject.
'We praise you for your prompt fulfilment of the orders contained in the previous letter. You have built a fleet almost as quickly as ordinary men would sail one. The model of the triremes, revealing the number of the rowers but concealing their faces, was first furnished by the Argonauts. So too the sail, that flying sheet[391] which wafts idle men to their destination quicker than swiftest birds can fly, was first invented by the lorn Isis, when she set off on her wanderings through the world to find her lost son Apochran.

'Now that we have our fleet, there is no need for the Greek to fasten a quarrel upon us, or for the African [the Vandal] to insult us[392]. With envy they see that we have now stolen from them the secret of their strength.

'Let all the fleet be assembled at Ravenna on the next Ides of June. Let our own Padus send his home-born navy to the sea, his river-nurtured firs to battle with the winds of Ocean.

'But there is one suggestion of yours of great importance, and which must be diligently acted upon, namely the removal of the nets whereby the fishermen at present impede the channels of the following rivers: Mincius, Ollius (Oglio), Anser (Serchio), Arno, Tiber. Let the river lie open for the transit of ships; let it suffice for the appetite of man to seek for delicacies in the ordinary way, not by rustic artifice to hinder the freedom of the stream.'

 
 
 
5 - 20 KING THEODORIC TO AVILF, A SAJO: On the same subject.
These three letters all relate to the same subject as the two preceding ones--the formation of a navy, and the _rendezvous_ of ships and sailors at Ravenna on the Ides of June.

The Count of the Patrimony is courteously requested to see if there is any timber suitable for the purposes of the navy, growing in the royal estates along the banks of the Po.

The Sajones are ordered in more brusque and peremptory fashion: Gudinand to collect the sailors at Ravenna on the appointed day; and Avilf to collect timber along the banks of the Po, with as little injury to the Possessors as possible (not, however, apparently paying them anything for it), to keep his hands clean from extortion and fraud, and to pull up the stake-nets in the channels of the five rivers mentioned in Letter 17; 'for we all know that men ought to fish with nets, not with hedges, and the opposite practice shows detestable greediness.'

 
 
5 - 22 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Capuanus appointed Rector Decuriarum.
[On the appointment of Capuanus to the office of Rector of the Guilds (Rector Decuriarum). The Guilds (Decuriae) of the City of Rome--not to be confounded with the Provincial _Curiae_, membership in which was at this time a burden rather than an advantage--enjoyed several special privileges. We find from the Theodosian Code, Lib. xiv. Tit. 1, that there were Decuriae of the _Librarii_, _Fiscales_, _Censuales_. The _Decuria Scribarum_ is perhaps the same as the _Decuria Librariorum_. I use the word Guilds, which seems best to describe a body of this kind; but it will be seen from their names that these Guilds are not of a commercial character, but are rather concerned with the administration of justice. Some of them must have discharged the duties of attorneys, others of Inland Revenue officers, others acted as clerks to register the proceedings of the Senate, others performed the mere mechanical work of copying, which is now undertaken by a law stationer.

It was ordained by a law of Constantius and Julian (357) that no one should enter the first class in these Decuriae[393] unless he were a trained and practised literary man.

The young Capuanus has distinguished himself as a advocate both before the Senate and other tribunals. There has been a certain diffidence and hesitation in his manner, especially when he was dealing with common subjects; but he always warmed with his peroration, and the same man who even stammered in discussing some trifling detail became fluent, nay eloquent, when the graver interests of his client were at stake. When he saw that the Judge was against him he did not lose heart, but, by praising his justice and impartiality, gradually coaxed him into a more favourable mood. On one memorable occasion, when a certain document was produced which appeared hostile, he boldly challenged the accuracy of the copy [made probably by one of the _Decuria Librariorum_] and insisted on seeing the original. This young advocate is now appointed _Rector Decuriarum_, and thus accorded the privilege of seniority over many men who are much older than himself. He is exhorted to treat them with all courtesy, to remember the importance of accuracy and fidelity in the execution of his duties and those of the _Decuriales_ under him, on whose correct transcription of documents the property, the liberty, nay even the life of their fellow-subjects may depend. Especially he is exhorted to remember his own challenge of the accuracy of a copied document, that he may not ever find that memorable oration of his brought up against himself.

The Senate is exhorted to give the young official a kindly welcome. It will now devolve upon him to report with praiseworthy accuracy the proceedings of that body, the most celebrated in the whole world. He who has often pleaded before them the cause of the humble and weak, will now have to introduce Consulars to their assembly. It is expected that his eloquence will grow and his stammer will disappear, now that he is clothed with a more dignified office. 'Freedom nourishes words, but fear frequently interrupts their plenteous flow.'

 
5 - 23 KING THEODORIC TO ABUNDANTIUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Archery drill.
'Tata the Sajo is ordered to proceed to the Illustrious Count Julian, with the young archers whom he has drilled, that they may practise on the field the lessons which they have learned in the gymnasium. Let your Greatness provide them with rations and ships according to custom.'

 
5 - 24 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATOR EPIPHANIUS, CONSULARIS OF DALMATIA: Property of a widow dying intestate and without heirs to be claimed for the State.
'We are informed that Joanna, the wife of Andreas, having succeeded to her husband's estate, has died intestate without heirs. Her property ought therefore to lapse to our Treasury[394], but it is being appropriated, so we are informed, by divers persons who have no claim to it.

'Enquire into this matter; and if it be as we are informed, reclaim for our Treasury so legitimate a possession. We should consider ourselves guilty of negligence if we omitted to take possession of that which, without harming anyone, so obviously comes in to lighten the public burdens.

'But if you find the facts different to these, by all means leave the present owners in quiet possession. The secure enjoyment by our subjects of that which is lawfully theirs we hold to be our truest patrimony.'

 
5 - 25 KING THEODORIC TO BACAUDA[395], VIR SUBLIMIS: The name is a peculiar one, reminding us of the Bacaudae, who for more than a century waged a sort of servile war in Gaul against the officers of the Empire. It is not probable, however, that there is any real connection between them and the receiver of this letter.
'By way of support for your declining years we appoint you, for life, _Tribunus Voluptatum_ [Minister of Public Amusement] at Milan.

'It is a new principle in the public service[396] to give any man a life-tenure of his office; but you will now not have to fear the interference of any successor, and your mind being at ease about your own future, you will be able to minister to the pleasures of the people with a smiling face.'

[Footnote 396: 'Quod est in Reipublicae _militiâ_ novum.' Observe the use of militia for civil service.]

 
5 - 26 KING THEODORIC TO ALL THE GOTHS SETTLED IN PICENUM AND SAMNIUM: The Goths summoned to the royal presence.
'The presence of the Sovereign doubles the sweetness of his gifts, and that man is like one dead whose face is not known to his lord[397]. Come therefore by God's assistance, come all into our presence on the eighth day before the Ides of June (June 6th), there solemnly to receive our royal largesse. But let there be no excesses by the way, no plundering the harvest of the cultivators nor trampling down their meadows, since for this cause do we gladly defray the expense of our armies that _civilitas_ may be kept intact by armed men.'

 
5 - 27 KING THEODORIC TO GUDUIM, SAJO: The same.
'Order all the captains of thousands[398] of Picenum and Samnium to come to our Court, that we may bestow the wonted largesse on our Goths. We enquire diligently into the deeds of each of our soldiers, that none may lose the credit of any exploit which he has performed in the field. On the other hand, let the coward tremble at the thought of coming into our presence. Even this fear may hereafter make him brave against the enemy.'

 
5 - 28 KING THEODORIC TO CARINUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS: Invitation to Court.
'Granting your request, and also satisfying our own desire for your companionship, we invite you to our Court.'

 
5 - 29 KING THEODORIC TO NEUDES, VIR ILLUSTRIS: A blind Gothic warrior enslaved.
'Our pity is greatly moved by the petition of Ocer, a blind Goth, who has come by the help of borrowed sight to _feel_ the sweetness of our clemency, though he cannot see our presence.

'He asserts that he, a free Goth, who once followed our armies, has, owing to his misfortune, been reduced to slavery by Gudila and Oppas. Strange excess of impudence to make that man their servant, before whose sword they had assuredly trembled had he possessed his eyesight! He pleads that Count Pythias has already pronounced against the claims of his pretended masters. If you find that this is so, restore him at once to freedom, and warn those men not to dare to repeat their oppression of the unfortunate.'

 
5 - 30 KING THEODORIC TO GUDUI[M], VIR SUBLIMIS [AND DUX]: Servile tasks imposed on free Goths by a Duke.
'We expect those whom we choose as Dukes to work righteousness. Costula and Daila, men who by the blessing of God rejoice in the freedom of our Goths, complain that servile tasks are imposed upon them by you. We do not do this ourselves, nor will we allow anyone else to do it. If you find that the grievance is correctly stated rectify it at once, or our anger will turn against the Duke who thus abuses his power.'

 
5 - 31 KING THEODORIC TO DECORATUS, VIR DEVOTUS (?): Arrears of Siliquaticum to be enforced.
'Thomas, Vir Clarissimus, complains that he cannot collect the arrears of Siliquaticum from certain persons in Apulia and Calabria.

'Do you therefore summon Mark the Presbyter, Andreas, Simeonius, and the others whose names are set forth in the accompanying schedule, to come into your presence, using no unnecessary force[399] in your summons. If they cannot clear themselves of this debt to the public Treasury, they must be forced to pay.'

 
5 - 32 KING THEODORIC TO BRANDILA (CIR. 508-9): Assault of the wife of Brandila on the wife of Patzenes.
'Times without number has Patzenes laid his complaint upon us, to wit that while he was absent on the recent successful expedition[400] your wife Procula fell upon his wife [Regina], inflicted upon her three murderous blows, and finally left her for dead, the victim having only escaped by the supposed impossibility of her living. Now therefore, if you acknowledge the fact to be so, you are to consult your own honour by inflicting summary punishment as a husband on your wife, that we may not hear of this complaint again[401]. But if you deny the fact, you are to bring your said wife to our Comitatus and there prove her innocence.'

 
5 - 33 KING THEODORIC TO DUKE WILITANCH: Adulterous connection between Brandila and the wife of Patzenes.
'Patzenes brings before us a most serious complaint: that during his absence in the Gaulish campaign, Brandila dared to form an adulterous connection with his wife Regina, and to go through the form of marriage with her.

'Whose honour will be safe if advantage is thus to be taken with impunity of the absense of a brave defender of his country? Alas for the immodesty of women! They might learn virtue even from the chaste example of the cooing turtle-dove, who when once deprived by misfortune of her mate, never pairs again with another.

'Let your Sublimity compel the parties accused to come before you for examination, and if the charge be true, if these shameless ones were speculating on the soldier of the Republic not returning from the wars, if they were hoping, as they must have hoped, for general collapse and ruin in order to hide their shame, then proceed against them as our laws against adulterers dictate[402], and thus vindicate the rights of all husbands.'

 
5 - 34 KING THEODORIC TO ABUNDANTIUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT: Endless evasions of Frontosus. The nature of the chameleon.
'Frontosus, acting worthily of his name [the shameless-browed one], confessed to having embezzled a large sum of public money, but promised that, if a sufficient interval were allowed him, he would repay it. Times without number has this interval expired and been renewed, and still he does not pay. When he is arrested he trembles with fear, and will promise anything; as soon as he is liberated he seems to forget every promise that he has made. He changes his words, like the chameleon, that little creature which in the shape of a serpent is distinguished by a gold-coloured head, and has all the rest of its body of a pale green. This little beast when it meets the gaze of men, not being gifted with speed of flight, confused with its excess of timidity, changes its colours in marvellous variety, now azure, now purple, now green, now dark blue. The chameleon, again, may be compared to the Pandian gem [sapphire?], which flashes with all sorts of lights and colours while you hold it still in your hand.

'Such then is the mind of Frontosus. He may be rightly compared to Proteus, who when he was laid hold of, appeared in every shape but his own, roared as a lion, hissed as a serpent, or foamed away in watery waves, all in order to conceal his true shape of man.

'Since this is his character, when you arrest him, first stop his mouth from promising, for his facile nature is ready with all sorts of promises which he has no chance of performing. Then ascertain what he can really pay at once, and keep him bound till he does it. He must not be allowed to think that he can get the better of us with his tricks.'

 
5 - 35 0 KING THEODORIC TO COUNT LUVIRIT, AND AMPELIUS: Fraudulent ship-owners to be punished.
'When we were in doubt about the food supply of Rome, we judged it proper that Spain should send her cargoes of wheat hither, and the Vir Spectabilis Marcian collected supplies there for this purpose. His industry, however, was frustrated by the greed of the shipowners, who, disliking the necessary delay, slipped off and disposed of the grain for their own profit. Little as we like harshness, this offence must be punished. We have therefore directed Catellus and Servandus (Viri Strenui) to collect from these shipmasters the sum of 1,038 solidi (£622 16s.), inasmuch as they appear to have received:

'From the sale of the corn 280 solidi. 'And from the fares of passengers 758 ",'1,038 "

'Let your Sublimity assist in the execution of this order.'

 
5 - 36 KING THEODORIC TO STARCEDIUS, VIR SUBLIMIS: Honourable discharge.
'You tell us that your body, wearied out with continual labour, is no longer equal to the fatigues of our glorious campaigns, and you therefore ask to be released from the necessity of further military service. We grant your request, but stop your donative; because it is not right that you should consume the labourer's bread in idleness. We shall extend to you our protection from the snares of your adversaries, and allow no one to call you a deserter, since you are not one[403].'

 
5 - 37 KING THEODORIC TO THE JEWS OF MILAN: Rights of the Jewish Synagogue not to be invaded by Christians.
'For the preservation of _civilitas_ the benefits of justice are not to be denied even to those who are recognised as wandering from the right way in matters of faith.

'You complain that you are often wantonly attacked, and that the rights pertaining to your synagogue are disregarded[404]. We therefore give you the needed protection of our Mildness, and ordain that no ecclesiastic shall trench on the privileges of your synagogue, nor mix himself up in your affairs. But let the two communities keep apart, as their faiths are different: you on your part not attempting to do anything _incivile_ against the rights of the said Church.

'The law of thirty years' prescription, which is a world-wide custom[405], shall enure for your benefit also.

'But why, oh Jew, dost thou petition for peace and quietness on earth when thou canst not find that rest which is eternal[406]?'

 
5 - 38 KING THEODORIC TO ALL CULTIVATORS: : Shrubs obstructing the aqueduct of Ravenna to be rooted up.
'The aqueducts are an object of our special care. We desire you at once to root up the shrubs growing in the Signine Channel[408], which will before long become big trees scarcely to be hewn down with the axe, and which interfere with the purity of the water in the aqueduct of Ravenna. Vegetation is the peaceable overturner of buildings, the battering-ram which brings them to the ground, though the trumpets never sound for siege.

'We shall now again have baths that we may look upon with pleasure; water which will cleanse, not stain; water after using which we shall not require to wash ourselves again; drinking-water such that the mere sight of it will not take away all our appetite for food[409].'

 
5 - 39 KING THEODORIC TO AMPELIUS AND LIVERIA: Sundry abuses in the administration of the Spanish government to be rectified.
'That alone is the true life of men which is controlled by the reign of law.

'We regret to hear that through the capricious extortions of our revenue-officers anarchy is practically prevailing in Spain. The public registers (polyptycha), not the whim of the collector, ought to measure the liability of the Provincial.

'We therefore send your Sublimity to Spain in order to remedy these disorders.

'(1) Murder must be put down with a strong hand; but the sharper the punishment is made the more rigid we ought to be in requiring proof of the crime[411].

'(2) The collectors of the land-tax (assis publicus) are accused of using false weights [in collecting the quotas of produce from the Provincials]. This must cease, and they must use none but the standard weights kept by our Chamberlain[412].

'(3) The farmers[413] of our Royal domain must pay the rent imposed on them, otherwise they will get to look on the farms as their own property; but certain salaries may be paid them for their trouble, as you shall think fit[414]. [Dahn suggests that the salary was to reimburse them for their labours as a kind of local police, but is not himself satisfied with this explanation.]

'(4) Import duties[415] are to be regularly collected and honestly paid over.

'(5) The officers of the mint are not to make their private gains out of the coinage.'

(6) An obscure sentence as to the 'Canon telonei' [from the Greek [Greek: telônês], a tax-gatherer. Garet reads 'Tolonei,' which is probably an error].

(7) The same as to the _Actus Laeti_, whose conscience is assailed by the grossest imputations. [Laetus is perhaps the name of an official.]

'(8) Those concerned in _furtivae actiones_, and their accomplices, are to disgorge the property thus acquired.

'(9) Those who have received _praebendae_ [apparently official allowances charged on the Province] are, with detestable injustice, claiming them _both_ in money and in kind. This must be put a stop to: of course the one mode of payment is meant to be alternative to the other.

'(10) The Exactores (Collectors) are said to be extorting from the Provincials more than they pay into our chamber (_cubiculum_). Let this be carefully examined into, and let the payment exacted be the same that was fixed in the times of Alaric and Euric.

'(11) The abuse of claiming extortions (_paraveredi_) by those who have a right to use the public posts must be repressed.

'(12) The defence of the Provincials by the _Villici_ is so costly, and seems to be so unpopular, that we remove it altogether.' [For this _tuitio villici_, see Dahn iii. 131; but he is not able to throw much light on the nature of the office of the _Villicus_.]

'(13) Degrading services (servitia famulatus) are not to be claimed of our free-born Goths, although they may be residents in cities[416].'

 
 
5 - 41 KING THEODORIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Promotion of Cyprian to the Comitiva Sacrarum Largitionum.
The usual pair of letters setting forth the merits of the new official. The Senate is congratulated on the fact that the King never presents to a place in that body a mere tyro in official life, but always himself first tests the servants of the State, and rewards with a place in the Senate only those who have shown themselves worthy of it.

Cyprian is the son of a man of merit, Opilio, who in the times of the State's ill-fortune was chosen to a place in the royal household[417]. He was not able, owing to the wretchedness of the times, to do much for his son. The difference between the fortunes of father and son is the measure of the happy change introduced by the rule of Theodoric.

In some subordinate capacity in the King's final Court of Appeal (probably as _Referendarius_[418]) Cyprian has hitherto had the duty of stating the cases of the hostile litigants. He has shown wonderful dexterity in suddenly stating the same case from the two opposite points of view[419], and this so as to satisfy even the requirements of the litigants themselves.

Often the King has transacted business in his rides which used of old to be brought before a formal Consistory. He has mounted his horse, when weary with the cares of the Republic, to renew his vigour by exercise and change of scene. In these rides he has been accompanied by Cyprian, who has in such a lively manner stated the cases which had come up on appeal, that an otherwise tedious business was turned into a pleasure. Even when the King was most moved to wrath by what seemed to him a thoroughly bad cause, he still appreciated the charm of the Advocate's style in setting it before him. Thus has Cyprian had that most useful of all trainings, action, not books.

Thus prepared he was sent on an embassy to the East, a commission which he discharged with conspicuous ability. Versed in three languages (Greek, Roman, Gothic?), he found that Greece had nothing to show him that was new; and as for subtlety, he was a match for the keenest of the Greeks. The Emperor's presence had nothing in it to make him hesitating or confused. Why should it, since he had seen and pleaded before Theodoric[420]?

In addition to all these other gifts he possesses _faith_, that anchor of the soul amidst the waves of a stormy world.

He is therefore called upon to assume at the third Indiction [524-525] the office of Count of the Sacred Largesses, and exhorted to bear himself therein worthily of his parentage and his past career, that the King may afterwards promote him to yet higher honour.

 
5 - 42 KING THEODORIC TO MAXIMUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS, CONSUL: Rewards to performers in the Amphitheatre.
'If singers and dancers are to be rewarded by the generosity of the Consul, _à fortiori_ should the _Venator_, the fighter with wild beasts in the amphitheatre, be rewarded for _his_ endeavours to please the people, who after all are secretly hoping to see him killed. And what a horrible death he dies--denied even the rites of burial, disappearing before he has yet become a corpse into the maw of the hungry animal which he has failed to kill. These spectacles were first introduced as part of the worship of the Scythian Diana, who was feigned to gloat on human gore. The ancients called her the triple deity, Proserpina-Luna-Diana. They were right in one point; the goddess who invented these games certainly reigned _in hell_.'

The Colosseum (the Amphitheatre of Titus) is described.

The combats with wild beasts are pourtrayed in a style of pompous obscurity. We may dimly discern the form of the _bestiarius_, who is armed with a wooden spear; of another who leaps into the air to escape the beast's onset; of one who protects himself with a portable wall of reeds, 'like a sea-urchin;' of others who are fastened to a revolving wheel, and alternately brought within the range of the animal's claws and borne aloft beyond his grasp. 'There are as many perilous forms of encounter as Virgil described varieties of crime and punishment in Tartarus. Alas for the pitiable error of mankind! If they had any true intuition of Justice, they would sacrifice as much wealth for the preservation of human life as they now lavish on its destruction.' ['A noble regret,' says Gregorovius ('Geschichte der Stadt Rom.' i. 286), 'in which in our own day every well-disposed Minister of a military state will feel bound to concur with Cassiodorus.']

 
5 - 43 KING THEODORIC TO TRANSMUND [THRASAMUND], KING OF THE VANDALS (CIR. 511): Complains of the protection given by Thrasamund to Gesalic.
'Having given you our sister, that singular ornament of the Amal race, in marriage, in order to knit the bonds of friendship between us, we are amazed that you should have given protection and support to our enemy Gesalic [natural son of Alaric II]. If it was out of mere pity and as an outcast that you received him into your realm, you ought to have kept him there; whereas you have sent him forth furnished with large supplies of money to disturb the peace of our Gaulish Provinces. This is not the conduct of a friend, much less of a relative. We are sure that you cannot have taken counsel in this matter with your wife, who would neither have liked to see her brother injured, nor the fair fame of her husband tarnished by such doubtful intrigues. We send you A and B as our ambassadors, who will speak to you further on this matter.'

 
5 - 44 KING THEODORIC TO TRANSMUND [THRASAMUND], KING OF THE VANDALS: Reconciliation between Theodoric and Thrasamund.
'You have shown, most prudent of Kings, that wise men know how to amend their faults, instead of persisting in them with that obstinacy which is the characteristic of brutes. In the noblest and most truly kinglike manner you have humbled yourself to confess your fault in reference to the reception of Gesalic, and to lay bare to us the very secrets of your heart in this matter. We thank you and praise you, and accept your purgation of yourself from this offence with all our heart. As for the presents sent us by your ambassadors, we accept them with our minds, but not with our hands. Let them return to your Treasury (cubiculum), that it may be seen that it was simply love of justice, not desire of gain, which prompted our complaints. We have both acted in a truly royal manner[421]. Let your frankness and our contempt of gold be celebrated through the nations. It is sweeter to us to return these presents to you, than to receive much larger ones from anyone else. Your ambassadors carry back with them the fullest salutation of love from your friend and ally.'

 
6
6 - 1 FORMULA OF THE CONSULSHIP: Consulship.
'In old days the supreme reward of the Consulship was given to him who, by his strong right hand, had delivered the Republic. The mantle embroidered with palms of victory[423], the privilege of giving his name to the year and of enfranchising the slave, even power over the lives of his fellow-citizens, were rightly given to a man to whom the Republic owed so much. He received the axe--the power of life and death--but bound up in the bundle of rods, in order that the necessary delay in undoing these might prevent him from striking the irrevocable stroke without due consideration. Whence also he received the name of Consul, because it was his duty to _consult_ for the good of his country. He was bound to spend money freely; and thus he who had shed the blood of the enemies of Rome made the lives of her children happy by his generosity.

'But now take this office under happier circumstances, since we have the labours of the Consul, you the joys of his dignity. Your palm-embroidered robes therefore are justified by our victories, and you, in the prosperous hour of peace, confer freedom on the slave, because we by our wars are giving security to the Romans. Therefore, for this Indiction, we decorate you with the ensigns of the Consulship.

'Adorn your broad shoulders[424] with the variegated colours of the palm-robe; ennoble your strong hand with the sceptre of victory[425]. Enter your private dwelling having even your sandals gilded; ascend the curule chair by the many steps which its dignity requires: that thus you, a subject and at your ease, may enjoy the dignity which we, the Ruler, assumed only after mightiest labours. You enjoy the fruit of victory who are ignorant of war; we, God helping us, will reign; we will consult for the safety of the State, while your name marks the year. You overtop Sovereigns in your good fortune, since you wear the highest honours, and yet have not the annoyances of ruling. Wherefore pluck up spirit and confidence. It becometh Consuls to be generous. Do not be anxious about your private fortune, you who have elected to win the public favour by your gifts. It is for this cause [because the Consul has to spend lavishly during his year of office] that we make a difference between your dignity and all others. Other magistrates we appoint, even though they do not ask for the office. To the Consulship we promote only those who are candidates for the dignity, those who know that their fortunes are equal to its demands; otherwise we might be imposing a burden rather than a favour. Enjoy therefore, in a becoming manner, the honour which you wished for. This mode of spending money is a legitimate form of canvassing[426]. Be illustrious in the world, be prosperous in your own life, leave an example for the happy imitation of your posterity.'

 
6 - 2 FORMULA OF THE PATRICIATE: Patriciate.
'In olden times the Patricians were said to derive their origin from Jupiter, whose priests they were. Mythology apart, they derived their name from _Patres_, the dignity of priest having blended itself with that of Senator.

'The great distinction of the Patriciate is that it is a rank held _for life_, like that of the priesthood, from which it sprang. The Patrician takes precedence of Praefects and all other dignities save one (the Consulship), and that is one which we ourselves sometimes assume.

'Ascend then the pinnacle of the Patriciate. You may have yet further honours to receive from us, if you bear yourself worthily in this station.'

 
6 - 3 FORMULA OF THE PRAETORIAN PRAEFECTURE: Praetorian Praefecture.
'If the origin of any dignity can confer upon it special renown and promise of future usefulness, the Praetorian Praefecture may claim this distinction, illustrated as its establishment was by the wisdom of this world, and also stamped by the Divine approval. For when Pharaoh, King of Egypt, was oppressed by strange visions of future famine, there was found a blessed man, even Joseph, able to foretell the future with truth, and to suggest the wisest precautions for the people's danger. He first consecrated the insignia of this dignity; he in majesty entered the official chariot[427], raised to this height of honour, in order that his wisdom might confer blessings on the people which they could not receive from the mere power of the Ruler.

'From that Patriarch is this officer now called _Father of the Empire_; his name is even to-day celebrated by the voice of the crier, who calls upon the Judge to show himself not unworthy of his example. Rightly was it felt that he to whom such power was committed should always be thus delicately reminded of his duty.

'For some prerogatives are shared in common between ourselves and the holder of this dignity. [The next sentence[428] I leave untranslated, as I am not sure of the meaning. Manso (p. 343) translates it, 'He forces fugitives from justice, without regard to the lapse of time, to come before his tribunal.'] He inflicts heavy fines on offenders, he distributes the public revenue as he thinks fit, he has a like power in bestowing rights of free conveyance[429], he appropriates unclaimed property, he punishes the offences of Provincial Judges, he pronounces sentence by word of mouth [whereas all other Judges had to read their decisions from their tablets].

'What is there that he has not entrusted to him whose very speech is Judgment? He may almost be said to have the power of making laws, since the reverence due to him enables him to finish law-suits without appeal.

'On his entrance into the palace he, like ourselves, is adored by the assembled throng[430], and an office of such high rank appears to excuse a practice which in other cases would be considered matter for accusation[431].

'In power, no dignity is his equal. He judges everywhere as the representative of the Sovereign[432]. No soldier marks out to him the limits of his jurisdiction, except the official of the Master of the Soldiery. I suppose that the ancients wished [even the Praefect] to yield something to those who were to engage in war on behalf of the Republic.

'He punishes with stripes even the Curials, who are called in the laws a Lesser Senate.

'In his own official staff (officium) he is invested with peculiar privileges; since all men can see that he lays his commands on men of such high quality that not even the Judges of Provinces may presume to look down upon them. The staff is therefore composed of men of the highest education, energetic, strong-minded[433], intent on prompt obedience to the orders of their head, and not tolerating obstruction from others. To those who have served their time in his office, he grants the rank of Tribunes and Notaries, thus making his attendants equal to those who, mingled with the chiefs of the State, wait upon our own presence.

'We joyfully accomplish that which he arranges, since our reverence for his office constrains us to give immediate effect to his decrees. He deserves this at our hands, since his forethought nourishes the Palace, procures the daily rations of our servants, provides the salaries even of the Judges themselves[434]. By his arrangements he satiates the hungry appetites of the ambassadors of the [barbarous] nations[435]. And though other dignities have their specially defined prerogatives, by him everything that comes within the scope of our wisely-tempered sway is governed.

'Take therefore, from this Indiction, on your shoulders the noble burden of all these cares. Administer it with vigour and with utmost loyalty, that your rule may be prosperous to us and useful to the Republic. The more various the anxieties, the greater your glory. Let that glory beam forth, not in our Palace only, but be reflected in far distant Provinces. Let your prudence be equal to your power; yea, let the fourfold virtue [of the Platonic philosophy] be seated in your conscience. Remember that your tribunal is placed so high that, when seated there, you should think of nothing sordid, nothing mean. Weigh well what you ought to say, seeing that it is listened to by so many. Let the public records contain nothing [of your saying] which any need blush to read. The good governor not only has no part nor lot in injustice; unless he is ever diligently doing some noble work he incurs blame even for his inactivity. For if that most holy author [Moses?] be consulted, it will be seen that it is a kind of priesthood to fill the office of the Praetorian Praefecture in a becoming manner.'

 
6 - 4 FORMULA OF THE PRAEFECTURE OF THE CITY: Praefecture of the City.
'You, to whose care Rome is committed, are exalted by that charge to a position of the highest dignity. The Senate also is presided over by you; and the Senators, who wield full power in that assembly, tremble when they have to plead their own cause at your tribunal. But this is because they, who are the makers of laws, are subject to the laws; and so are we too, though not to a Judge.

'Behave in a manner worthy of your high office. Treat the Consulars with deference. Put away every base thought when you cross the threshold of every virtue. If you wish to avoid unpopularity, avoid receiving bribes. It is a grand thing when it can be said that Judges will not accept that which thousands are eager to offer them.

'To your care is committed not only Rome herself (though Rome includes the world[436]), but, by ancient law, all within the hundredth milestone.

'You judge, on appeal, causes brought from certain Provinces defined by law. Your staff is composed of learned men; eloquent they can hardly help being, since they are always hearing the masters of eloquence. You ride in your _Carpentum_ through a populace of nobles[437]; oh, act so as to deserve their shouts of welcome! How will you deserve their favour? By seeing that merchandise is sold without venality[438]; that the fires kindled to heat the wholesome baths are not chilled by corruption; that the games, which are meant for the pleasure of the people, are not by partisanship made a cause of strife. For so great is the power of glorious truth, that even in the affairs of the stage justice is desired[439]. Take then the robe of Romulus, and administer the laws of Rome. Other honours await you if you behave worthily in this office, and above all, if you win the applause of the Senate.'

 
6 - 5 FORMULA OF THE QUAESTORSHIP: Quaestorship.
'No Minister has more reason to glory in his office than the Quaestor, since it brings him into constant and intimate communication with Ourselves. The Quaestor has to learn our inmost thoughts, that he may utter them to our subjects. Whenever we are in doubt as to any matter we ask our Quaestor, who is the treasure-house of public fame, the cupboard of laws; who has to be always ready for a sudden call, and must exercise the wonderful powers which, as Cicero has pointed out, are inherent in the art of an orator. He should so paint the delights of virtue and the terrors of vice, that his eloquence should almost make the sword of the magistrate needless.

'What manner of man ought the Quaestor to be, who reflects the very image of his Sovereign? If, as is often our custom, we chance to listen to a suit, what authority must there be in his tongue who has to speak the King's words in the King's own presence? He must have knowledge of the law, wariness in speech, firmness of purpose, that neither gifts nor threats may cause him to swerve from justice. For in the interests of Equity we suffer even ourselves to be contradicted, since we too are bound to obey her. Let your learning be such that you may set forth every subject on which you have to treat, with suitable embellishments.

'Moved therefore by the fame of your wisdom and eloquence, we bestow upon you, by God's grace, the dignity of the Quaestorship, which is the glory of letters, the temple of _civilitas_, the mother of all the dignities, the home of continence, the seat of all the virtues.

'To you the Provinces transmit their prayers. From you the Senate seeks the aid of law. You are expected to suffice for the needs of all who seek from us the remedies of the law. But when you have done all this, be not elated with your success, be not gnawed with envy, rejoice not at the calamities of others; for what is hateful in the Sovereign cannot be becoming in the Quaestor.

'Exercise the power of the Prince in the condition of a subject; and may you render a good account to the Judges at the end of your term of office.'

 
6 - 6 FORMULA OF THE MAGISTERIAL DIGNITY, AND ITS EXCELLENCY (MAGISTER OFFICIORUM): Mastership of the Offices.
'The Master's is a name of dignity. To him belongs the discipline of the Palace; he calms the stormy ranks of the insolent Scholares [the household troops, 10,000 in number, in the palace of the Eastern Emperor, according to Lydus (ii. 24)]. He introduces the Senators to our presence, cheers them when they tremble, calms them when they are speaking, sometimes inserts a word or two of his own, that all may be laid in an orderly manner before us. It rests with him to fix a day for the admission of a suitor to our _Aulicum Consistorium_, and to fulfil his promise. The opportune velocity of the post-horses [the care of the _Cursus Publicus_] is diligently watched over by him[440].

'The ambassadors of foreign powers are introduced by him, and their _evectiones_ [free passes by the postal-service] are received from his hands[441].

'To an officer with these great functions Antiquity gave great prerogatives: that no Provincial Governor should assume office without his consent, and that appeals should come to him from their decisions. He has no charge of collecting money, only of spending it. It is his to appoint _peraequatores_[442] of provisions in the capital, and a Judge to attend to this matter. He also superintends the pleasures of the people, and is bound to keep them from sedition by a generous exhibition of shows. The members of his staff, when they have served their full time, are adorned with the title of _Princeps_, and take their places at the head of the Praetorian cohorts and those of the Urban Praefecture [the officials serving in the bureaux of those two Praefects]--a mark of favour which almost amounts to injustice, since he who serves in one office (the Master's) is thereby put at the head of all those who have been serving in another (the Praefect's)[443].'

'The assistant (Adjutor) of the Magister is also present at our audiences, a distinguished honour for his chief.

'Take therefore this illustrious office and discharge it worthily, that, in all which you do, you may show yourself a true Magister. If _you_ should in anywise go astray (which God forbid), where should morality be found upon earth?'

 
6 - 7 FORMULA OF THE OFFICE OF COMES SACRARUM LARGITIONUM: Office of Count of Sacred Largesses.
'Yours is the high and pleasing office of administering the bounty of your Sovereign[444]. Through you we dispense our favours and relieve needy suppliants on New Year's Day. It is your business to see that our face is imprinted on our coins, a reminder to our subjects of our ceaseless care on their behalf, and a memorial of our reign to future ages.

[Footnote 444: 'Regalibus magna profecti felicitas _militare_ donis.... Laetitia publica _militia_ tua est.' Observe the continued use of military terms for what we call the Civil Service.]

'To this your regular office we also add the place of _Primicerius_ [_Primicerius Notariorum_?], so that you are the channel through which honours as well as largesses flow. Not only the Judges of the Provinces are subject to you, even the _Proceres Chartarum_ (?) have not their offices assured to them till you have confirmed the instrument. You have also the care of the royal robes. The sea-coasts and their products, and therefore merchants, are under your sway. The commerce of salt, that precious mineral, rightly classed with silken robes and pearls, is placed under your superintendence.

'Take therefore these two dignities, the Comitiva Sacrarum Largitionum and the Primiceriatus. If some of the ancient privileges of your office have been retrenched [some functions, probably, taken from the Comes Sacrarum Largitionum and assigned to the Comes Patrimonii], comfort yourself with the thought that you have two dignities instead of one.'

 
6 - 8 FORMULA OF THE OFFICE OF COMES PRIVATARUM, AND ITS EXCELLENCY: Office of Count of Private Domains.
'Your chief business, as the name of your office implies, is to govern the royal estates by the instrumentality of the _Rationales_ under you.

'This work alone, however, would have given you a jurisdiction only over slaves [those employed on the royal domains]; and as a slave is not a person in the eye of the law, it seemed unworthy of the dignity of Latium to confine your jurisdiction to these men. Some urban authority has therefore been given you in addition to that which you exercise over these boors: cases of incest, and of pollution or spoliation of graves, come before you. Thus the chastity of the living and the security of the dead are equally your care. In the Provinces you superintend the tribute-collectors (Canonicarios), you admonish the cultivators of the soil (Possessores), and you claim for the Royal Exchequer property to which no heirs are forthcoming[445]. Deposited monies also, the owners of which are lost by lapse of time, are searched out by you and brought into our Exchequer, since those who by our permission enjoy all their own property ought willingly and without sense of loss to offer us that which belongs to other men.

'Take then the honour of _Comes Privatarum_: it also is a courtly dignity, and you will augment it by your worthy fulfilment of its functions.'

 
6 - 9 FORMULA OF THE OFFICE OF COUNT OF THE PATRIMONY, AND ITS EXCELLENCY: Office of Count of the Patrimony.
'To our distant servants we send long papers with instructions as to their conduct; but you, admitted to our daily converse, do not need these. You are to undertake the care of our royal patrimony.

'Do not give in to all the suggestions of our servants on these domains, who are apt to think that everything is permitted them because they represent the King; but rather incline the scale against them. You will have to act much in our sight; and as the rising sun discloses the true colours of objects, so the King's constant presence reveals the Minister's character in its true light. Avoid loud and harsh tones in pronouncing your decisions: when we hear you using these, we shall know that you are in the wrong. External acts and bodily qualities show the habit of the mind. We know a proud man by his swaggering gait, an angry one by his flashing eyes, a crafty one by his downcast look, a fickle one by his wandering gaze, at avaricious one by his hooked nails.

'Take then the office of Count of the Patrimony, and discharge it uprightly. Be expeditious in your decisions on the complaints of the tillers of the soil. Justice speedily granted is thereby greatly enhanced in value, and though it is really the suitor's right it charms him as if it were a favour.

'Attend also to the provision of suitable delicacies for our royal table. It is a great thing that ambassadors coming from all parts of the world should see rare dainties at our board, and such an inexhaustible supply of provisions brought in by the crowds of our servants that they are almost ready to think the food grows again in the kitchen, whither they see the dishes carried with the broken victuals. These banqueting times are, and quite deservedly, your times for approaching us with business, when no one else is allowed to do so.'

 
6 - 10 FORMULA BY WHICH MEN ARE MADE PROCERES PER CODICILLOS VACANTES: Codicilli Vacantes.
'There are cases in which men whom it is desirable for the Sovereign to honour are unable, from delicate health or slender fortunes, to enter upon an official career. For instance, a poor nobleman may dread the expenses of the Consulship; a man illustrious by his wisdom may be unable to bear the worries of a Praefecture; an eloquent tongue may shun the weight of a Quaestorship. In these cases the laws have wisely ordained that we may give such persons the rank which they merit by _Codicilli Vacantes_. It must always be understood, however, that in each dignity those who thus obtain it rank behind those who have earned it by actual service. Otherwise we should have all men flocking into these quiet posts, if the workers were not preferred to men of leisure[446].

'Take therefore, by these present codicils, the rank which you deserve, though you have not earned it by your official career.'

 
6 - 11 FORMULA BY WHICH THE RANK OF AN ILLUSTRIS AND THE TITLE OF A COMES DOMESTICORUM ARE CONFERRED, WITHOUT OFFICE: Illustratus Vacans.
'The bestowal of honour, though it does not change the nature of a man, induces him to consider his own reputation more closely, and to abstain from that which may stain it.

'Take therefore the rank (without office) of an Illustrious Count of the Domestics[448], and enjoy that greatest luxury of worthy minds--power to attend to your own pursuits.

'For what can be sweeter than to find yourself honoured when you enter the City, and yet to be able to cultivate your own fields; to abstain from fraudful gains, and yet see your barns overflowing with the fruit of your own sweet toil?

'But even as the seed and the soil must co-operate to produce the harvest, so do we sow in you the seed of this dignity, trusting that your own goodness of heart will give the increase.'

 
6 - 12 FORMULA FOR THE BESTOWAL OF A COUNTSHIP OF THE FIRST ORDER, WITHOUT OFFICE: Comitiva Primi Ordinis.
'It is a delightful thing to enjoy the pleasures of high rank without having to undergo the toils and annoyances of office, which often make a man loathe the very dignity which he eagerly desired.

'The rank of _Comes_ is one which is reached by Governors (Rectores) of Provinces after a year's tenure of office, and by the Counsellors of the Praefect, whose functions are so important that we look upon them as almost Quaestors.

'Their rank[449] gives the holder of it, though only a _Spectabilis_, admission to our Consistory, where he sits side by side with all the Illustres.

'We bestow it upon you, and name you a _Comes Primi Ordinis_, thereby indicating that you are to take your place at the head of all the other Spectabiles and next after the Illustres. See that you imitate the latter, and that you are not surpassed in excellence of character by any of those below you.'

 
6 - 13 FORMULA FOR BESTOWING THE [HONORARY] RANK OF MASTER OF THE BUREAU [MAGISTER SCRINII] AND COUNT OF THE FIRST ORDER, ON AN OFFICER OF THE COURTS (COMITIACUS) IN ACTIVE SERVICE: Honorary promotion for a Comitiacus.
'Great toils and great perils are the portion of an officer of the Courts in giving effect to their sentences. It is easy for the Judge to say, "Let so and so be done;" but on the unhappy officer falls all the difficulty and all the odium of doing it. He has to track out offenders and hunt them to their very beds, to compel the contumacious to obey the law, to make the proud learn their equality before it. If he lingers over the business assigned to him, the plaintiff complains; if he is energetic, the defendant calls out. The very honesty with which he addresses himself to the work is sure to make him enemies, enemies perhaps among powerful persons, who next year may be his superiors in office, and thus subjects him to all sorts of accusations which he may find it very hard to disprove. In short, if we may say it without offence to the higher dignitaries, it is far easier to discharge without censure the functions of a Judge than those of the humble officer who gives effect to his decrees.

'Wherefore, in reward for your long and faithful service, and in accordance with ancient usage, we bestow on you the rank of a Count of the First Order, and ordain that if anyone shall molest you on account of your acts done in the discharge of your duties, he shall pay a fine of so many [perhaps ten = £400] pounds of gold.'

 
6 - 14 FORMULA BESTOWING RANK AS A SENATOR: Senatorial rank.
'We desire that our Senate should grow and flourish abundantly. As a parent sees the increase of his family, as a husbandman the growth of his trees with joy, so we the growth of the Senate. We therefore desire that Graius should be included in that virtuous and praiseworthy assembly[450]. This is a new kind of grafting, in which the less noble shoot is grafted on to the nobler stock. As a candle shines at night, but pales in the full sunlight, so does everyone, however illustrious by birth or character, who is introduced into your majestic body. Open your Curia, receive our candidate. He is already predestined to the Senate upon whom we have conferred the dignity of the Laticlave.'

 
6 - 15 FORMULA OF THE VICARIUS OF THE CITY OF ROME: Vicariate of the City of Rome.
'Though nominally only the agent of another [the Praefectus Urbi] you have powers and privileges of your own which almost entitle you to rank with the Praefects. Suitors plead before you in causes otherwise heard only before Praefects[451]; you pronounce sentence in the name of the King[452] [not of the Praefect]; and you have jurisdiction even in capital cases. You wear the chlamys, and are not to be saluted by passers-by except when thus arrayed, as if the law wished you to be always seen in military garb. [The chlamys was therefore at this time a strictly military dress.] In all these things the glory of the Praefecture seems to be exalted in you, as if one should say, "How great must the Praefect be, if his Vicar is thus honoured!" Like the highest dignitaries you ride in a state carriage[453]. You have jurisdiction everywhere within the fortieth milestone from the City. You preside over the games at Praeneste, sitting in the Consul's seat. You enter the Senate-house itself, that palace of liberty[454]. Even Senators and Consulars have to make their request to you, and may be injured by you.

'Take therefore this dignity, and wield it with moderation and courage.'

 
6 - 16 FORMULA OF THE NOTARIES: Notaries.
'It is most important that the secrets of the Sovereign, which many men so eagerly desire to discover, should be committed to persons of tried fidelity. A good secretary should be like a well-arranged _escritoire_, full of information when you want it, but absolutely silent at other times. Nay, he must even be able to dissimulate his knowledge, for keen questioners can often read in the face what the lips utter not. [Cf. the description of the Quaestor Decoratus in v. 3.]

'Our enquiries, keen-scented as they are for all men of good life and conversation, have brought your excellent character before us. We therefore ordain that you shall henceforth be a Notary. In due course of service you will attain the rank of Primicerius, which will entitle you to enter the Senate, "the Curia of liberty." Moreover, should you then arrive at the dignity of Illustris or at the [Comitiva] Vacans, you will be preferred to all who are in the same rank but who have not acquired it by active service[455].

'Enter then upon this duty, cheered by the prospect of one day attaining to the highest honours.'

 
6 - 17 FORMULA OF THE REFERENDARII.
'Great is the privilege of being admitted to such close converse with the King as you will possess, but great also are the responsibilities and the anxieties of the Referendarius. In the midst of the hubbub of the Court he has to make out the case of the litigant, and to clothe it in language suitable for our ears. If he softens it down ever so little in his repetition of it, the claimant declares that he has been bribed, that he is hostile to his suit. A man who is pleading his own cause may soften down a word or two here and there, if he see that the Court is against him; but the Referendarius dares not alter anything. Then upon him rests the responsibility of drawing up our decree, adding nothing, omitting nothing. Hard task to speak _our_ words in our own presence.

'Take then the office of Referendarius, and show by your exercise of it to what learning men may attain by sharing our conversation. Under us it is impossible for an officer of the Court to be unskilled in speech. Like a whetstone we sharpen the intellects of our courtiers, and polish them by practice at our bar[456].'

 
6 - 18 FORMULA OF THE PRAEFECTUS ANNONAE, AND HIS EXCELLENCY: Praefectus Annonae.
'If the benefit of the largest number of citizens is a test of the dignity of an office yours is certainly a glorious one. You have to prepare the Annona of the sacred City, and to feed the whole people as at one board. You run up and down through the shops of the bakers, looking after the weight and fineness of the bread, and not thinking any office mean by which you may win the affections of the citizens.

'You mount the chariot of the Praefect of the City, and are displayed in closest companionship with him at the games. Should a sudden tumult arise by reason of a scarcity of loaves, you have to still it by promising a liberal distribution. It was from his conduct in this office that Pompey attained the highest dignities and earned the surname of the Great.

'The pork-butchers also (Suarii) are subject to your control.

'It is true that the corn is actually provided by the Praetorian Praefect, but you see that it is worked up into elegant bread[457].

'Even so Ceres discovered corn, but Pan taught men how to bake it into bread; whence its name (_Panis_, from Pan).

'Take then this office: discharge it faithfully, and weigh, more accurately than gold, the bread by which the Quirites live.'

 
6 - 19 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF THE CHIEF PHYSICIANS: Comes Archiatrorum.
'The doctor helps us when all other helpers seem to fail. By his art he finds out things about a man of which he himself is ignorant; and his prognosis of a case, though founded on reason, seems to the ignorant like prophecy.

'It is disgraceful that there should be a president of the lascivious pleasures of the people (Tribunus Voluptatum) and none of this healing art. Excellent too may your office be in enabling you to control the squabbles of the doctors. They ought not to quarrel. At the beginning of their exercise of their art they take a sort of priestly oath to hate wickedness and to love purity. Take then this rank of Comes Archiatrorum, and have the distinguished honour of presiding over so many skilled practitioners and of moderating their disputes.

'Leave it to clumsy men to ask their patients "if they have had good sleep; if the pain has left them." Do you rather incline the patient to ask you about his own malady, showing him that you know more about it than he does. The patient's pulse, the patient's water, tell to a skilled physician the whole story of his disease.

'Enter our palace unbidden; command us, whom all other men obey; weary us if you will with fasting, and make us do the very opposite of that which we desire, since all this is your prerogative.'

 
6 - 20 FORMULA OF THE OFFICE OF A CONSULAR, AND ITS EXCELLENCY: Consularis.
'You bear among your trappings the axes and the rods of the Consul, as a symbol of the nature of the jurisdiction which you exercise in the Provinces.

'In some Provinces you even wear the _paenula_ (military cloak) and ride in the _carpentum_ (official chariot), as a proof of your dignity.

'You must not think that because your office is allied to that of Consul any lavish expenditure by way of largesse is necessary. By no means; but it is necessary that you should abstain from all unjust gains. Nothing is worse than a mixture of rapacity and prodigality.

'Respect the property of the Provincials, and your tenure of office will be without blame.

'Receive therefore, for this Indiction, the office of Consular in such and such a Province, and let your moderation appear to all the inhabitants.'

 
6 - 21 FORMULA OF THE GOVERNOR (RECTOR) OF A PROVINCE: Rector Provinciae.
'It is important to repress crime on the spot. If all criminal causes had to wait till they could be tried in the capital, robbers would grow so bold as to be intolerable. Hence the advantage of Provincial Governors. Receive then for this Indiction the office of Rector of such and such a Province. Look at the broad stripe (laticlave) on your purple robe, and remember the dignity which is betokened by that bright garment, which poets say was first woven by Venus for her son Priapus, that the son's beautiful robe might attest the mother's loveliness.

'You have to collect the public revenues, and to report to the Sovereign all important events in your Province. You may judge even Senators and the officers of Praefects. Your name comes before that of even dignified Provincials, and you are called Brother by the Sovereign. See that your character corresponds to this high vocation. Your subjects will not fear you if they see that your own actions are immoral. There can be no worse slavery than to sit on the judgment-seat, knowing that the men who appear before you are possessors of some disgraceful secret by which they can blast your reputation.

'Refrain from unholy gains, and we will reward you all the more liberally.'

 
6 - 22 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF THE CITY OF SYRACUSE: Comitiva Syracusana.
'We must provide such Governors for our distant possessions that appeals from them shall not be frequent. Many men would rather lose a just cause than have the expense of coming all the way from Sicily to defend it; and as for complaints against a Governor, we should be strongly inclined to think that a complaint presented by such distant petitioners must be true.

'Act therefore with all the more caution in the office which we bestow upon you for this Indiction. You have all the pleasant pomp of an official retinue provided for you at our expense. Do not let your soldiers be insolent to the cultivators of the soil (possessores). Let them receive their rations and be satisfied with them, nor mix in matters outside their proper functions. Be satisfied with the dignity which your predecessors held. It ought not to be lowered; but do not seek to exalt it.'

 
6 - 23 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF NAPLES: Comitiva Neapolitana.
'As the sun sends forth his rays so we send out our servants to the various cities of our dominions, to adorn them with the splendour of their retinue, and to facilitate the untying of the knots of the law by the multitude of jurisconsults who follow in their train. Thus we sow a liberal crop of official salaries, and reap our harvest in the tranquillity of our subjects. For this Indiction we send you as Count to weigh the causes of the people of Naples. It is a populous city, and one abounding in delights by sea and land. You may lead there a most delicious life, if your cup be not mixed with bitterness by the criticisms of the citizens on your judgments. You will sit on a jewelled tribunal, and the Praetorium will be filled with your officers; but you will also be surrounded by a multitude of fastidious spectators, who assuredly, in their conversation, will judge the Judge. See then that you walk warily. Your power extends for a certain distance along the coast, and both the buyer and seller have to pay you tribute. We give you the chance of earning the applause of a vast audience: do you so act that your Sovereign may take pleasure in multiplying his gifts.'

 
6 - 24 FORMULA ADDRESSED TO THE GENTLEMEN-FARMERS (OR THE TITLEDCULTIVATORS) AND COMMON COUNCILMEN[458] OF THE CITY OF NAPLES [AND SURROUNDING DISTRICT]: Honorati Possessores et Curiales Civitatis Neapolitanae.
'You pay us tribute, but we have conferred honours upon you. We are now sending you a Comes [the one appointed in the previous formula], but he will be a terror only to the evil-disposed. Do you live according to reason, since you are reasonable beings, and then the laws may take holiday. Your quietness is our highest joy[459].'

 
6 - 25 FORMULA DE COMITIVA PRINCIPIS MILITUM
The letter, though very short, is obscure.

It starts with the maxim that every staff of officials ought to have its own Judge[460], and then, apparently, proceeds to make an exception to this rule by making the persons addressed--the civil or military functionaries of Naples--subject to the Comes Neapolitanus who was appointed by the Twenty-third Formula. No reason is given for this exception, except an unintelligible one about preserving the yearly succession of Judges[461]; but the persons are assured that their salaries shall be safe[462].

 
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7 - 1 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF A PROVINCE: Comitiva Provinciae.
'Your dignity, unlike that of most civil officers, is guarded by the sword of war. See however that this terrible weapon is only drawn on occasions of absolute necessity, and only wielded for the punishment of evil-doers. Anyone who is determining a case of life and death should decide slowly, since any other sentence is capable of correction, but the dead man cannot be recalled to life. Let the ensigns of your power be terrible to drivers-away of cattle, to thieves and robbers; but let innocence rejoice when she sees the tokens of approaching succour. Let no one pervert your will by bribes: the sword of justice is sheathed when gold is taken. Receive then for this Indiction the dignity of Count in such and such a Province. So use your power that you may be able to defend your actions when reduced to a private station, though indeed, if you serve us well in this office, we are minded to promote you to yet higher dignities.'

 
7 - 2 FORMULA OF A PRAESES: Praesidatus.
'It has been wisely ordered by the Ancients that a Provincial Governor's term of office should be only annual. Thus men are prevented from growing arrogant by long tenure of power, and we are enabled to reward a larger number of aspirants. Get through one year of office if you can without blame: even that is not an easy matter. It rests then with us to prolong the term of a deserving ruler[464], since we are not keen to remove those whom we feel to be governing justly. Receive then for this Indiction the Praesidatus of such and such a Province, and so act that the tiller of the soil (possessor) may bring us thanks along with his tribute. Follow the good example of your predecessors: carefully avoid the bad. Remember how full your Province is of nobles, whose good report you may earn but cannot compel. You will find it a delightful reward, when you travel through the neighbouring Provinces, to hear your praises sounded there where your power extends not. You know our will: it is all contained in the laws of the State. Govern in accordance with these, and you shall not go unrewarded.'

 
7 - 3 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF THE GOTHS IN THE SEVERAL PROVINCES: Comitiva Gothorum per singulas Provincias.
'As we know that, by God's help, Goths are dwelling intermingled among you, in order to prevent the trouble (indisciplinatio) which is wont to arise among partners (consortes) we have thought it right to send to you as Count, A B, a sublime person, a man already proved to be of high character, in order that he may terminate (amputare) any contests arising between two Goths according to our edicts; but that, if any matter should arise between a Goth and a born Roman, he may, after associating with himself a Roman jurisconsult[465], decide the strife by fair reason[466]. As between two Romans, let the decision rest with the Roman examiners (cognitores), whom we appoint in the various Provinces; that thus each may keep his own laws, and with various Judges one Justice may embrace the whole realm. Thus, sharing one common peace, may both nations, if God favour us, enjoy the sweets of tranquillity.

'Know, however, that we view all [our subjects] with one impartial love; but he may commend himself more abundantly to our favour who subdues his own will into loving submission to the law[467]. We like nothing that is disorderly[468]; we detest wicked arrogance and all who have anything to do with it. Our principles lead us to execrate violent men[469]. In a dispute let laws decide, not the strong arm. Why should men seek by choice violent remedies, when they know that the Courts of Justice are open to them? It is for this cause that we pay the Judges their salaries, for this that we maintain such large official staffs with all their privileges, that we may not allow anything to grow up among you which may tend towards hatred. Since you see that one lordship (imperium) is over you, let there be also one desire in your hearts, to live in harmony.

'Let both nations hear what we have at heart. You [oh Goths!] have the Romans as neighbours to your lands: even so let them be joined to you in affection. You too, oh Romans! ought dearly to love the Goths, who in peace swell the numbers of your people and in war defend the whole Republic[470]. It is fitting therefore that you obey the Judge whom we have appointed for you, that you may by all means accomplish all that he may ordain for the preservation of the laws; and thus you will be found to have promoted your own interests while obeying our command.'

 
7 - 4 FORMULA OF THE DUKE OF RAETIA: Ducatus Raetiarum.
'Although promotion among the _Spectabiles_ goes solely by seniority, it is impossible to deny that those who are employed in the border Provinces have a more arduous, and therefore in a sense more honourable, office than those who command in the peaceful districts of Italy. The former have to deal with war, the latter only with the repression of crime. The former hear the trumpet's clang, the latter the voice of the crier.

'The Provinces of Raetia are the bars and bolts of Italy. Wild and cruel nations ramp outside of them, and they, like nets, whence their name[471], catch the Barbarian in their toils and hold him there till the hurled arrow can chastise his mad presumption.

'Receive then for this Indiction the _Ducatus Raetiarum_. Let your soldiers live on friendly terms with the Provincials, avoiding all lawless presumption; and at the same time let them be constantly on their guard against the Barbarians outside. Even bloodshed is often prevented by seasonable vigilance.'

 
7 - 5 FORMULA OF THE PALACE ARCHITECT: Cura Palatii.
'Much do we delight in seeing the greatness of our Kingdom imaged forth in the splendour of our palace.

'Thus do the ambassadors of foreign nations admire our power, for at first sight one naturally believes that as is the house so is the inhabitant.

'The Cyclopes invented the art of working in metal, which then passed over from Sicily to Italy.

'Take then for this Indiction the care of our palace, thus receiving the power of transmitting your fame to a remote posterity which shall admire your workmanship. See that your new work harmonises well with the old. Study Euclid--get his diagrams well into your mind; study Archimedes and Metrobius.

'When we are thinking of rebuilding a city, or of founding a fort or a general's quarters, we shall rely upon you to express our thoughts on paper [in an architect's design]. The builder of walls, the carver of marbles, the caster of brass, the vaulter of arches[472], the plasterer, the worker in mosaic, all come to you for orders, and you are expected to have a wise answer for each. But, then, if you direct them rightly, while theirs is the work yours is all the glory.

'Above all things, dispense honestly what we give you for the workmen's wages; for the labourer who is at ease about his victuals works all the better.

'As a mark of your high dignity you bear a golden wand, and amidst the numerous throng of servants walk first before the royal footsteps [i.e. last in the procession and immediately before the King], that even by your nearness to our person it may be seen that you are the man to whom we have entrusted the care of our palaces.'

 
7 - 6 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF THE AQUEDUCTS: Comitiva Formarum Urbis.
'Though all the buildings of Rome are wonderful, and one can scarce for this reason say which are the chief among them, we think a distinction may be drawn between those which are reared only for the sake of ornament and those which also serve a useful purpose. Thus, however often one sees the Forum of Trajan, it always seems a wonder[473]. To stand on the lofty Capitol is to see all other works of the human intellect surpassed. And yet neither of these great works touches human life, nor ministers to health or enjoyment. But in the Aqueducts of Rome we note both the marvel of their construction and the rare wholesomeness of their waters. When you look at those rivers, led as it were over piled up mountains, you would think that their solid stony beds were natural channels, through so many ages have they borne the rush of such mighty waters. And yet even mountains are frequently undermined, and let out the torrents which have excavated them; while these artificial channels, the work of the ancients, never perish, if reasonable care be taken of their preservation.

'Let us consider how much that wealth of waters adds to the adornment of the City of Rome. Where would be the beauty of our _Thermae_, if those softest waters were not supplied to them?

'Purest and most delightful of all streams glides along the _Aqua Virgo_, so named because no defilement ever stains it. For while all the others, after heavy rain show some contaminating mixture of earth, this alone by its ever pure stream would cheat us into believing that the sky was always blue above us. Ah! how express these things in words worthy of them? The _Aqua Claudia_ is led along on the top of such a lofty pile that, when it reaches Mount Aventine, it falls from above upon that lofty summit as if it were watering some lowly valley. It is true that the Egyptian Nile, rising at certain seasons, brings its flood of waters over the land under a cloudless sky; but how much fairer a sight is it to see the Roman Claudia flowing with a never-failing stream over all those thirsty mountain tops, and bringing purest water through a multitude of pipes to so many baths and houses. When Nile retreats he leaves mud behind him; when he comes unexpectedly he brings a deluge. Shall we not then boldly say that our Aqueducts surpass the famous Nile, which is so often a terror to the dwellers on his banks either by what he brings or by what he leaves behind him? It is in no spirit of pride that we enumerate these particulars, but in order that you may consider how great diligence should be shown by you to whom such splendid works are entrusted.

'Wherefore, after careful consideration, we entrust you for this Indiction with the _Comitiva Formarum_, that you may zealously strive to accomplish what the maintenance of such noble structures requires. Especially as to the hurtful trees which are the ruin of buildings, [inserting their roots between the stones and] demolishing them with the destructiveness of a battering-ram: we wish them to be pulled up by the roots, since it is no use dealing with an evil of this kind except in its origin. If any part is falling into decay through age, let it be repaired at once: the first expense is the least. The strengthening of the Aqueducts will constitute your best claim on our favour, and will be the surest means of establishing your own fortune. Act with skill and honesty, and let there be no corrupt practices in reference to the distribution of the water.'

 
7 - 7 FORMULA OF THE PRAEFECT OF THE WATCH OF THE CITY OF ROME: Praefectus Vigilum Urbis Romae.
'Your office, exercised as it is in the City itself, and under the eyes of Patricians and Consuls, is sure to bring you renown if you discharge its duties with diligence. You have full power to catch thieves, though the law reserves the right of punishing them for another official, apparently because it would remember that even these detestable plunderers are yet Roman citizens. Take then for this Indiction the _Praefectura Vigilum_. You will be the safety of sleepers, the bulwark of houses, the defence of bolts and bars, an unseen scrutineer, a silent judge, one whose right it is to entrap the plotters and whose glory to deceive them. Your occupation is a nightly hunting, most feared when it is not seen. You rob the robbers, and strive to circumvent the men who make a mock at all other citizens. It is only by a sort of sleight of hand that you can throw your nets around robbers; for it is easier to guess the riddles of the Sphinx than to detect the whereabouts of a flying thief. He looks round him on all sides, ready to start off at the sound of an advancing footstep, trembling at the thought of a possible ambush. How can one catch him who, like the wind, tarries never in one place? Go forth, then, under the starry skies; watch diligently with all the birds of night, and as they seek their food in the darkness so do you therein hunt for fame.

'Let there be no corruption, no deeds of darkness which the day need blush for. Do this, and you will have our support in upholding the rightful privileges of yourself and your staff.'

 
7 - 8 FORMULA OF THE PRAEFECT OF THE WATCH OF THE CITY OF RAVENNA: Praefectus Vigilum Urbis Ravennatis.
Contains the same topics as the preceding formula, rather less forcibly urged, and with no special reference to the City of Ravenna.

An exhortation at the end not to be too hasty, nor to shed blood needlessly, even when dealing with thieves.

 
7 - 9 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF PORTUS: Comitiva Portus Urbis Romae.
'It is a service of pleasure rather than of toil to hold the dignity of Comes in the harbour of the City of Rome, to look forth upon the wide sail-traversed main, to see the commerce of all the Provinces tending towards Rome, and to welcome travellers arriving with the joy of ended peril. Excellent thought of the men of old to provide two channels by which strangers might enter the Tiber, and to adorn them with those two stately cities [Portus and Ostia], which shine like lights upon the watery way!

'Do you therefore, by your fair administration, make it easy for strangers to enter. Do not grasp at more than the lawful dues; for the greedy hand closes a harbour, and extortion is as much dreaded by mariners as adverse winds. Receive then for this Indiction the _Comitiva Portus_; enjoy the pleasures of the office, and lay it down with increased reputation.'

 
7 - 10 FORMULA OF THE TRIBUNUS VOLUPTATUM: Tribunus Voluptatum.
'Though the wandering life of the stage-player seems as if it might run to any excess of licence, Antiquity has wisely provided that even it should be under some sort of discipline. Thus respectability governs those who are not respectable, and people who are themselves ignorant of the path of virtue are nevertheless obliged to live under some sort of rule. Your place, in fact, is like that of a guardian; as he looks after the tender years of his ward, so you bridle the passionate pleasures of your theatrical subjects.

'Therefore, for this Indiction, we appoint you Tribune of [the people's] Pleasures. See that order is observed at the public spectacles: they are not really popular without this. Keep your own high character for purity in dealing with these men and women of damaged reputation, that men may say, "Even in promoting the pleasures of the people he showed his virtuous disposition."

'It is our hope that through this frivolous employment you may pass to more serious dignities.'

 
7 - 11 FORMULA OF THE DEFENSOR OF ANY CITY: Defensor cujuslibet Civitatis.
[Observe that the Defensor has power to fix prices, in addition to his original function of protecting the commonalty from oppression.]

'The number of his clients makes it necessary for the representative of a whole city to be especially wary in his conduct.

'At the request of your fellow-citizens we appoint you, for this Indiction, Defensor of such and such a city. Take care that there be nothing venal in your conduct. Fix the prices for the citizens according to the goodness or badness of the seasons, and remember to pay yourself what you have prescribed to others. A good Defensor allows his citizens neither to be oppressed by the laws nor harassed by the dearness of provisions.'

 
7 - 12 FORMULA OF THE CURATOR OF A CITY: Curator Civitatis.
This formula differs very little from the preceding, except that the new officer is told 'wisely to govern the ranks of the Curia.' Stress is again laid on the regulation of prices: 'Cause moderate prices to be adhered to by those whom it concerns. Let not merchandise be in the sole power of the sellers, but let an agreeable equability be observed in all things. This is the most enriching kind of popularity, which is derived from maintaining moderation in prices[474]. You shall have the same salary (consuetudines) which your predecessors had in the same place.'

 
7 - 13 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF ROME: Comitiva Romana.
'If even bolts and bars cannot secure a house from robbery, much more do the precious things left in the streets and open spaces of Rome require protection. I refer to that most abundant population of statues, to that mighty herd of horses [in stone and metal] which adorn our City. It is true that if there were any reverence in human nature, it, and not the watchman, ought to be the sufficient guardian of the beauty of Rome[475]. But what shall we say of the marbles, precious both by material and workmanship, which many a hand longs, if it has opportunity, to pick out of their settings? Who when entrusted with such a charge can be negligent? who venal? We entrust to you therefore for this Indiction the dignity of the Comitiva Romana, with all its rights and just emoluments. Watch for all such evil-doers as we have described. Rightly does the public grief[476] punish those who mar the beauty of the ancients with amputation of limbs, inflicting on them that which they have made our monuments to suffer. Do you and your staff and the soldiers at your disposal watch especially by night; in the day the City guards itself. At night the theft looks tempting; but the rascal who tries it is easily caught if the guardian approaches him unperceived. Nor are the statues absolutely dumb; the ringing sound which they give forth under the blows of the thief seems to admonish their drowsy guardian. Let us see you then diligent in this business, that whereas we now bestow upon you a toilsome dignity, we may hereafter confer an honour without care.'

 
7 - 14 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF RAVENNA: Comitiva Ravennatis.
'High is your honour, to be the means of taking away all slowness from the execution of our orders. Who knows not what a quantity of ships you can muster at the least hint from us! Scarcely is the ink dry on the _evectio_ [permission to use the public post] prepared by some palace dignitary, when already with the utmost speed it is by you being carried into effect. Do not exact too much service from merchants[477], nor yet from corrupt motives let them off too easily. Be very careful in your judicial capacity, and especially when trying the causes of the poor, to whom a small error in your judgment may be far more disastrous than to the rich.'

 
7 - 15 FORMULA ADDRESSED TO THE PRAEFECT OF THE CITY ON THE APPOINTMENT OF AN ARCHITECT: Architectus Publicorum.
'It is desirable that the necessary repairs to this forest of walls and population of statues which make up Rome should be in the hands of a learned man who will make the new work harmonise with the old. Therefore for this Indiction we desire your Greatness to appoint A B Architect of the City of Rome. Let him read the books of the ancients; but he will find more in this City than in his books. Statues of men, showing the muscles swelling with effort, the nerves in tension, the whole man looking as if he had grown rather than been cast in metal. Statues of horses, full of fire, with the curved nostril, with rounded tightly-knit limbs, with ears laid back--you would think the creature longed for the race, though you know that the metal moves not. This art of statuary the Etruscans are said to have practised first in Italy; posterity has embraced it, and given to the City an artificial population almost equal to its natural one. The ancients speak of the wonders of the world [here enumerated and described], but this one of the City of Rome surpasses them all. It had need to be a learned man who is charged with the care of upholding all these works; else, in his despair, he will deem himself the man of stone, and the statues about him the truly living men.'

 
7 - 16 FORMULA OF THE COUNT OF THE ISLANDS OF CURRITANA AND CELSINA: Comitiva Insulae Curritanae et Celsinae.
'The presence of a ruler is necessary; and it is not desirable that men should live without discipline, according to their own wills. We therefore appoint you Judge of these two islands. For it is right that someone should go to the habitations of these men, who are shut out from converse with the rest of their kind, and settle their differences by fair reason.

'Oh ye inhabitants of these islands, ye now know whom our Piety has set over you, and we shall expect you to obey him.'

 
7 - 17 FORMULA CONCERNING THE PRESIDENT OF THE LIME-KILNS: Praepositus Calcis.
'It is a glorious labour to serve the City of Rome. It cannot be doubted that lime (coctilis calx), which is snow-white and lighter than sponge, is useful for the mightiest buildings. In proportion as it is itself disintegrated by the application of fire does it lend strength to walls; a dissolvable rock, a stony softness, a sandy pebble, which burns the best when it is most abundantly watered, without which neither stones are fixed nor the minute particles of sand hardened.

'Therefore we set you, well known for your industry, over the burning and distribution of lime, that there may be plenty of it both for public and private works, and that thereby people may be put in good heart for building. Do this well, and you shall be promoted to greater things.'

 
7 - 18 FORMULA CONCERNING ARMOURERS: Armorum Factores.
'Good arms are of the utmost importance to a community. By means of them man, the frailest of creatures, is made stronger than monstrous beasts. Phoroneus is said to have first invented them, and brought them to Juno to consecrate them by her divinity.

'For this Indiction we set you over the soldiers and workmen in our armouries. Do not presume in our absence to pass bad workmanship. We shall find out by diligent search all that you do, and in such a matter as this consider no mistake venial.'

 
7 - 19 FORMULA ADDRESSED TO THE PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT CONCERNING THE ARMOURERS: Ad Praefectum Praetorio de Armorum Factoribus.
Announces to the Praefects the appointment conferred in the preceding letter, and repeats that to supply inferior arms to soldiers is an act of treason. The workmen are to receive their just _consuetudines_ [wages].

 
7 - 20 FORMULA AS TO THE COLLECTION OF BINA AND TERNA:
(1) _If collected by the Judge himself;_ (2) _If collected by his Officium._

These _Bina_ and _Terna_, as stated in the note to iii. 8, are a mystery. All that can be positively stated about them is that they were a kind of land-tax, collected from the cultivators (possessores), and that they had to be brought into the Treasury by the first of March in each year. Under the first formula the Judex himself, under the second two _Scriniarii_ superintend the collection, reporting to the Count of Sacred Largesses. As in the previous letter (iii. 8), the Judex is reminded that if there is any deficiency he will have to make it good himself. Cf. Manso, 'Geschichte des Ostgothischen Reiches' 388; and Sartorius, 'Regierung der Ostgothen' 207 and 347.

 
7 - 21
Missing.
 
7 - 22 FORMULA OF EXHORTATION ADDRESSED TO THE TWO SCRINIARII REFERRED TO IN FORMULA 21: Commonitorium illi et illi Scriniariis.
'Your day of promotion is come. Proceed to such and such a Province, in order that you may assist the Judex and his staff in collecting the _Bina_ and _Terna_, before the first of March, and may forward them without delay to the Count of Sacred Largesses. Let there be no extortion from the cultivator, no dishonest surrender of our rights.'

 
7 - 23 FORMULA OF THE VICARIUS OF PORTUS: Vicarius Portus.
'Great prudence is necessary in your office, since discords easily arise between two nationalities. Therefore you must use skill to soothe those [the Greek merchants and sailors from the Levant] whose characters are unstable as the winds, and who, unless you bring their minds into a state of calm, will, with their natural quickness of temper, fly out into the extremity of insolence.'

 
7 - 24 FORMULA OF THE PRINCEPS OF DALMATIA: Princeps Dalmatiarum.
'Whosoever serves while bearing the title of Princeps has high pre-eminence among his colleagues. To the Consul of the Provinces power is given, but to you the Judge himself is entrusted. Without you there is no access to the Secretarium, nor is the ceremony of salutation[478] [by subordinate officers] performed. You hold the vine-rod[479] which menaces the wicked; you have the right, withheld from the Governor himself, of punishing the insolence of an orator pleading in his Court. The records of the whole suit have to be signed by you, and for this your consent is sought after the will of the Judge has been explained.'

 
7 - 25 FORMULA RECOMMENDING THE PRINCIPES[480] TO THE COMES: Ad Commendandos Comiti Principes.
'It is our glory to see you [a Goth, one of our own nation] accompanied by a Roman official staff. Acting through such Ministers, your power seems to be hallowed by the sanction of Antiquity.

'For to this point, by God's help, have we brought our Goths, that they should be both well-trained in arms and attuned to justice. It is this which the other races cannot accomplish; this that makes you unique among the nations, namely, that you, who are accustomed to war, are seen to live obedient to the laws side by side with the Romans. Therefore from out of our _Officium_, we have decided to send A and B to you, that according to ancient custom, while forwarding the execution of your commands they may bring those commands into conformity with the mind of past ages[481].'

 
7 - 26 FORMULA OF THE COUNTSHIP OF THE SECOND RANK IN DIVERS CITIES[482]: Comitiva diversarum civitatum.
For the sentences, more than usually devoid of meaning, in which Cassiodorus dilates on Free-will, Justice, and the mind of man, it may be well to substitute Manso's description of this dignity (p. 379):

'By the title of a Count of the Second Order the Judges in little towns appear chiefly to have been rewarded and encouraged. Those named for it, however, can hardly have received any great distinction or especial privileges, for Cassiodorus not only enumerates no civic advantages thus secured to them, but expressly says, "We intend to bestow better things than this upon you, if you earn our approbation in your present office." He does not use this language to those adorned with the _Comitiva Primi Ordinis_.'

 
7 - 27 FORMULA ADDRESSED TO THE DIGNIFIED CULTIVATORS AND CURIALES[483]: Honorati Possessores et Curiales.
'As one must rule and the rest obey, we have for this Indiction conferred the Countship of your City on A B, that he may hear your causes and give effect to our orders.'

 
7 - 28 FORMULA ANNOUNCING THE APPOINTMENT OF A COMES TO THE CHIEF OF HIS STAFF[484]: Princeps Militum Comitivae.
'Judge and Court Officer (Praesul and Miles) are terms which involve one another. The officers of the Court have no right to exist, without the Judge; he is powerless without them to execute his commands. We therefore think it well to inform you of our appointment of A B as Count over your body[485]. It is no light benefit that so long as you attend to your duty[486] you are allowed to elect the examiners.'

 
7 - 29 FORMULA CONCERNING THE GUARD AT THE GATES OF A CITY: De Custodiendis Portis Civitatis.
'We entrust to you an important office, the care of the gate of such and such a city. Do not keep it always shut--that were to turn the city into a prison; nor let it always lie open--then the walls are useless. Use your own judgment, but remember that the gate of a city is like the jaws of the human body, through which provisions enter to nourish it.'

 
7 - 30 FORMULA OF THE TRIBUNATE IN THE PROVINCES: Tribunatus Provinciarum.
'It is right that one who has served his time in civil employment should receive his reward, and we therefore appoint as your Tribune the man who has a right to the office by seniority. You are to obey him, since officers of this kind partake of the nature of Judges [governors], as they are called to account for any excesses committed by you.'

 
7 - 31 FORMULA OF THE PRINCEPS OF THE CITY OF ROME: Formula Principatus Urbis Romae.
'As there must be the _Officium_, of a Count in Rome, and as we want to have our chief Princeps[487] near us [in Ravenna], we wish you to take his place and wield power as his _Vicarius_ in Rome.

'If you think that any of the _Comitiaci_ ought to be sent to attend our Comitatus [at Ravenna], do so at your own discretion, retaining those whom you think proper to retain at Rome. Let there be an alternation, however, that one set of men be not worn out with continuous labour, while the others are rusting in idleness.'

 
7 - 32 FORMULA OF THE MASTER OF THE MINT: Formula qua Moneta Committitur.
'Great is the crime of tampering with the coinage; a crime against the many--whose buying and selling is disturbed by it; and a crime and a sacrilege against us, whose image is impressed on the coins.

'Let everything be pure and unalloyed which bears the impress of our Serenity. Let the flame of gold be pale and unmixed, let the colour of silver smile with its gracious whiteness, let the ruddy copper retain its native glow.

'Coins are to keep their full weight. They used to pass current by weight, not by tale, whence the words for profit and expenditure[488]. _Pecunia_ was named from cattle (pecus). You must see that our money does not return to this low condition. King Servius first used stamped money. Take then the care of the mint; hold it for five years, and be very careful how you administer it.'

 
7 - 33 FORMULA RESPECTING THE AMBASSADORS OF VARIOUS NATIONS: Formula Legatorum Gentium Diversarum.
'Since it is important that when ambassadors return to their country they should feel that they have been well treated in ours, hand the enclosed _douceur_ (humanitas), and a certain quantity of fodder for their horses, to the ambassadors of such and such a nation. Nothing pleases those who have commenced their return journey better than speeding them on their way.'

 
7 - 34 FORMULA OF SUMMONS TO THE KING'S COURT (UNSOLICITED): Formula Evocatoria quam Princeps dirigit.
'We summon you by these presents to our Comitatus, that you may have an extraordinary pleasure. Be brisk therefore, and come on such a day to such a city. Our Palace longs for the presence of good men, and God puts it into our hearts to give them a cordial reception.'

 
7 - 35 FORMULA OF SUMMONS TO THE COURT (SOLICITED): Formula Evocatoria quae petenti conceditur.
'It is a sign of a good conscience to seek the presence of a just ruler; it is only good deeds that crave the light of the sun. Come then speedily. We consider our own glory augmented when we see noble men flocking to our obedience.'

 
7 - 36 FORMULA GRANTING TEMPORARY LEAVE OF ABSENCE: Formula Commeatalis ad tempus.
'All men require change: even honey cloys after a time. We therefore give you leave to visit such a Province and remain there so many months, with the understanding that when they are over you return to the City. If it be tedious to live always in the City, how much more to live long in the country! But we gladly give you this holiday, not that Rome should be deserted, but that absence from her may commend her to you all the more.'

 
7 - 37 FORMULA CONFERRING THE RANK OF A SPECTABILIS: Spectabilitas.
'Wishing to bestow the right honours on the right man among our subjects, we decorate you with the splendour of a _Spectabilis_, that you may know that your opinion is duly respected[489] at all public meeting-places, when you take your honoured seat among the nobles.'

 
7 - 38 FORMULA CONFERRING THE RANK OF A CLARISSIMUS: Clarissimatus.
'The desire of praise is a good thing, and leads to the increase of virtue. Receive the honour of the _Clarissimatus_, as a testimony to the excellence of your past life and a pledge of your future prosperity. Observe, you are not called _Clarus_, but _Clarissimus_. Everything that is most excellent may be believed of him who is saluted by such a splendid superlative.'

 
7 - 39 FORMULA BESTOWING 'POLICE PROTECTION.'
'Though it seems superfluous to grant special protection to any of our subjects, since all are shielded by the laws, yet moved by your cry for help we are willing to relieve you and to give you as a strong tower of defence the shelter of our name[490], into which you may retire when wounded by the assaults of your enemies. This defence will avail you alike against the hot-headed onslaughts [of the Goths] and the ruinous chicanery [of the Romans][491]; but you must beware that you, who have thus had to solicit the help of the law, do not yourself set law at defiance by refusing to appear in answer to a summons.

'That our royal protection be not a mere name, we appoint A and B to protect you by their fidelity and diligence, the former against the Goths, and the latter against the Romans[492]. If any one hereafter attempt any act of _incivilitas_ against you, you will see your desire upon your enemies.'

 
7 - 40 FORMULA FOR THE CONFIRMATION OF MARRIAGE AND THE LEGITIMATION OF OFFSPRING.
'An eternal benefit is that which is bestowed on a man's offspring; and hard is the lot of him who, born with a stain on his name, finds his troubles prepared as soon as he comes forth to the light of day.

'You pray that the woman whom you have loved but not married may receive the honour of wedlock, and that your children by her may attain the name of heirs. We grant your request, and ordain that your mistress shall be your lawful wife, and the children whom you love and whom Nature has given you, your successors.'

 
7 - 41 FORMULA CONFERRING THE RIGHTS OF FULL AGE.
'An honourable boast is contained in the suit for "venia aetatis." In it a young man says, "Give me those rights which my stability of character warrants, though my age does not as yet entitle me to them."

'Thus you refuse the protection which the law throws round the years of weakness, and this is as bold a thing as any man can do. We grant your request; and if you can prove that you have come to the age at which "venia aetatis" should be asked for, we ordain that, with the proper formalities which have been of old provided in this matter[493], you shall be admitted to all the rights of an adult, and that your dispositions of property, whether in city or country, shall be held valid[494]. You must exhibit that steadfastness of character which you claim. You say that you will not be caught by the snares of designing men; and you must remember that now to deny the fulfilment of your promise will become a much more serious matter than heretofore.'

 
7 - 42 FORMULA OF AN EDICT TO THE QUAESTOR ORDERING THE PERSON WHO ASKS FOR THE PROTECTION OF A SAJO TO GIVE BAIL.
'Heavy charges are sometimes brought against the Sajones whom with the best intentions we have granted for the protection of our wealthy subjects. We are told that the valour of the Sajo is employed not merely for the protection of him to whom he is assigned, but for illegal violence and rapine against that person's enemies. Thus our remedy becomes itself a disease. To guard against this perversion of our beneficent designs we ordain that anyone asking for the guardianship of a brave Sajo against violence with which he feels himself unable to cope, shall give a penal bond to our Officium, with this condition, that if the Sajo[495] who is assigned to him shall exceed our orders by any improper violence, he himself shall pay by way of fine so many pounds of gold, and shall make satisfaction for the damage sustained by his adversary as well as for the expenses of his journey [to obtain redress]. For our wish is to repress uncivil dispositions, not to injure the innocent. As for the Sajo who shall have wilfully transgressed the limit of our commands, he shall lose his donative, and--which is the heaviest of all punishments--our favour also. Nor will we entrust any further duty to him who has been the violator rather than the executor of our will.'

 
7 - 43 FORMULA APPROVING THE APPOINTMENT OF A CLERK IN THE RECORD-OFFICE: Probatoria Cartariorum.
'At the suggestion of the Tribune of the Cartarii--to whom the whole office pays fitting reverence--we bestow upon you the title of a Cartarius. Flee avarice and avoid all unjust gains.'

 
7 - 44 FORMULA FOR THE GRANT OF PUBLIC PROPERTY ON CONDITION OF IMPROVEMENT.
'He who seeks to become owner of public property can only justify his claim by making the squalid beautiful, and by adorning the waste. Therefore, as you desire it, we confer upon you as your full property such and such a place, reserving all mineral rights--brass, lead, marbles--should any such be found therein; but we do this on the understanding that you will restore to beauty that which has become shabby by age and neglect. It is the part of a good citizen to adorn the face of his city, and you may securely transmit to your posterity that which your own labour has accomplished[497].'

 
7 - 45 FORMULA OF REMISSION OF TAXES WHERE THE TAXPAYER HAS ONLY ONE HOUSE, TOO HEAVILY ASSESSED: Formula qua census relevetur ei qui unam casam possidet praegravatam.
'You complain that the land-tax (tributum) levied upon your holding (possessio) in such a Province is so heavy that all your means are swallowed up in the swamp of indebtedness, and that more is claimed by the tax-collectors than can be obtained from the soil by the husbandman. You might, by surrendering the property altogether, escape from this miserable necessity which is making you a slave rather than, a landowner; but since the Imperial laws (sacratissimae leges) give us the power to relieve a man of moderate fortune in such circumstances, our Greatness, which always hath the cause of justice at heart, decrees by these presents that if the case be as you say, the liability for the payment of so many solidi on behalf of the aforesaid property shall be cancelled in the public archives, and that this shall be done so thoroughly that there shall be no trace of it left in any copy of the taxing-rolls by which the charge may be revived at a future day[498].'

 
7 - 46 FORMULA LEGITIMATING MARRIAGE WITH A FIRST COUSIN: Formula qua consobrina legitima fiat uxor.
'After the laws of the two tables, Moses adds the laws wherein God forbids marriages between near kindred, to guard against incest and provide for a wise admixture of divers strains of blood[499].

'These commands have been extended to remoter degrees of relationship by the wise men of old, who have however reserved to the Prince the power of granting dispensations from the rule in the cases (not likely to be frequent) where first cousins (by the mother's side) seek to intermarry.

'Acting on this wise principle we permit you to marry C D, if she is of no nearer kinship to you than first cousin. By God's favour may you have legitimate heirs from this marriage, which, our consent having been obtained, is not blameable but praiseworthy.'

 
7 - 47 FORMULA ADDRESSED TO THE PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT DIRECTING THE SALE OF THE PROPERTY OF A CURIALIS: Formula ad Praefectum, ut sub decreto Curialis praedia vendat.
'It is the hard lot of human nature often to be injured by the very things which were intended as remedies. The prohibition against the sale of the property of a Curialis was intended for his protection, and to enable him fearlessly to discharge his share of the public burdens. In some cases, however, where he has contracted large debts, this prohibition simply prevents him from saving anything out of the gulf of indebtedness. You have the power, after making due enquiry into the circumstances, to authorise the sale of such a property. You have the power; but as the proceeding is an unusual one, to guard you against any odium to which it may expose you, we fortify your Eminence by this our present command. Let the Curialis who petitions for this relief satisfy you as to the cause of his losses, that it may be shown that they are really the result of circumstances beyond his own control, not due to his own bad character.

'Wisely has Antiquity laid upon _you_ the responsibility of deciding cases of this kind, you whose advantage lies in the maintenance of the Curia. For by whom could its burdens be borne, if the nerves of the communities should everywhere be seen to be severed[500]?'

 
8 0
8 - 1 KING ATHALARIC TO THE EMPEROR JUSTIN (A.D. 526): The accession of Athalaric announced to the Emperor Justin.
'Most earnestly do I seek your friendship, oh most clement of Princes, who are made even more illustrious by the wide extension of your favours than by the purple robe and the kingly throne. On this friendship I have an hereditary claim. My father was adorned by you with the palm-enwoven robe of the Consul [Eutharic, Consul 519] and adopted as a son in arms, a name which I, as one of a younger generation, could more fittingly receive[501]. My grandfather also received curule honours from you[502] in your city. Love and friendship should pass from parents to their offspring, while hatred should be buried in the tomb; and therefore with confidence, as one who by reason of my tender years cannot be an object of suspicion to you, and as one whose ancestors you have already known and cherished, I claim from you your friendship on the same compacts and conditions on which your renowned predecessors granted it to my lord and grandfather of Divine memory[503]. It will be to me something better than dominion to have the friendship of so excellent and so mighty a ruler. My ambassadors (A and B) will open the purport of their commission more fully to your Serenity.'

 
8 - 2 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME ON HIS ACCESSION (A.D. 526): To the Senate.
'Great must be the joy of all orders of the State at hearing of the accession of a new ruler, above all of a peaceful succession, without war, without sedition, without loss of any kind to the Republic.

'Such has been our succession to our grandfather. On account of the glory of the Amal race, which yields to none[504], the hope of our youth has been preferred to the merits of all others. The chiefs, glorious in council and in war, have flocked to recognise us as King so gladly, so unmurmuringly, that it seems like a Divine inspiration, and the kingdom has been changed as one changes a garment.

'The institution of royalty is consolidated when power thus passes from one generation to another, and when a good prince lives again, not in statues of brass but in the lineaments and the character of his descendants.

'The general consent of Goths and Romans [at Ravenna] has crowned us King, and they have confirmed their allegiance by an oath. You, though separated from us by space, are, we know, as near to us in heart as they; and we call upon you therefore to follow their example. We all know that the most excellent fathers of the Senate love their King more fervently than other ranks of the State, in proportion to the greater benefits which they have received at his hand.

'And since one should never enter your Curia empty-handed, we have sent our Count, the Illustrious Sigismer, with certain persons to administer the oath to you. If you have any requests to make to us which shall be for the common benefit of the Republic, make them through him, and they are granted beforehand.'

 
8 - 3 KING ATHALARIC TO THE ROMAN PEOPLE (A.D. 526): To the citizens of Rome.
'If a stranger to the royal line were succeeding to the throne, you might doubt whether the friendship between him and you would endure, and might look for a reversal of the policy of his predecessors. But now the person of the King only, not his policy, is changed. We are determined to follow the revered maxims of our predecessor, and to load with even more abundant benefits those whom he most kindly defended.

'Everything was so ordered by our glorious grandfather that on his death the glad consent of Goths called us to our kingdom; and that no doubt might remain upon the matter they pledged themselves by an oath most cordially taken, to accept us as their ruler. We invite you to follow their example, and like Trajan, we, the Sovereign, in whose name all oaths are made, will also swear to you. The bearers of this letter will receive your sworn promise, and will give you ours, "by the Lord's help to observe justice and fair clemency, the nourisher of the nations; that Goths and Romans shall meet with impartial treatment at our hands; and that there shall be no other division between the two nations, except that _they_ undergo the labours of war for the common benefit, while _you_ are increased in numbers by your peaceable inhabitancy of the City of Rome[505]." Raise then your spirits, and hope for even better things and more tranquillity, under God's blessing, from our reign than from that of our predecessor.'

 
8 - 4 KING ATHALARIC TO ALL THE ROMANS SETTLED IN ITALY AND THE DALMATIAS (A.D. 526): To the Romans in Italy and Dalmatia.
'He who hears of a change in the ruler is apt to fear that it may be a change for the worse; and a new King who makes no kind promises at his accession is supposed to be harbouring designs of severity. We therefore inform you that we have received the oaths of Goths and Romans and are ready to receive yours, which we doubt not you will willingly offer.' [The rest as in the preceding letters.]

 
8 - 5 KING ATHALARIC TO ALL THE GOTHS SETTLED IN ITALY (A.D. 526): To the Goths.
'Gladly would we have announced to you the prolonged life of our lord and grandfather; but inasmuch as he has been withdrawn by hard fate from us who loved him, he has substituted us, by Divine command, as heirs of his kingdom, that through us his successors in blood, he might make the benefits which he has conferred on you perpetual. And in truth we hope not only to defend but to increase the blessings wrought by him. All the Goths in the Royal City [Ravenna] have taken the oaths to us. Do you do the same by this Count whom we send to you.

'Receive then a name which ever brought prosperity to your race, the royal offshoot of the Amals, the sprout of the Balthae[506], a childhood clad in purple. Ye are they by whom, with God's help, our ancestors were borne to such a height of honour, and obtained an ever higher place amid the serried ranks of kings[507].'

 
8 - 6 KING ATHALARIC TO LIBERIUS, PRAETORIAN PRAEFECT OF THE GAULS (A.D. 526): To the Governor of Gaul.
'You will be grieved to hear of the death of our lord and grandfather of glorious memory, but will be comforted in learning that he is succeeded by his descendant. Thus, by God's command, did he arrange matters, associating us as lords in the throne of his royalty, in order that he might leave his kingdom at peace, and that no revolution might trouble it after his death.'

 
8 - 7 KING ATHALARIC TO ALL THE PROVINCIALS SETTLED IN GAUL (A.D. 526): To the Gaulish subjects of Athalaric.
'Our grandfather of glorious memory is dead, but we have succeeded him, and will faithfully repay, both on his account and our own, the loyalty of our subjects.

'So unanimous was the acclamation of our [Italian] subjects when we succeeded to the throne, that the thing seemed to be of God rather than of man.

'We now invite you to follow their example, that the Goths may give their oath to the Romans, and the Romans may confirm it by a _Sacramentum_ to the Goths, that they are unanimously devoted to our King.'

'Thus will your loyalty be made manifest, and concord and justice flourish among you.'

 
8 - 8 KING ATHALARIC TO VICTORINUS, VIR VENERABILIS AND BISHOP[508] (A.D. 526): To Bishop Victorinus.
'Saluting you with all the veneration due to your character and office, we inform you with grief of the death of our lord and grandfather. But your sadness will be moderated when you hear that his kingdom is continued in us. Favour us with your prayers, that the King of Heaven may confirm to us the kingdom, subdue foreign nations before us, forgive us our sins, and propitiously preserve all that He was pleased to bestow on our ancestors. Let your Holiness exhort all the Provincials to concord.'

 
8 - 9 KING ATHALARIC TO TULUM, PATRICIAN: Praises of Tulum, who is raised to the Patriciate.
'As our grandfather used to refresh his mind and strengthen his judgment by intercourse with you, so, _à fortiori_, may we in our tender years do the same. We therefore make you, by this present letter, Patrician, that the counsels which you give us may not seem to proceed from any unknown and obscure source.

'Greece adorned our hero [Tulum] with the chlamys and the painted silken buskin; and the Eastern peoples yearned to see him, because for some reason civic virtues are most prized in him who is believed to be of warlike disposition[509]. Contented with this repayment of honour he laboured with unwearied devotion for foreign countries (?), and with his relations (or parents) he deigned to offer his obedience to the Sovereign, who was begotten of the stock of so many Kings[510].

[Footnote 510: 'Hac igitur honoris remuneratione contentus, pro exteris partibus indefessa devotione laboravit: et praestare com suis parentibus principi dignabatur obsequium, qui tantorum regum fuerat stirpe procreatus.' This sentence is full of difficulties. What can he mean by the labour 'pro exteris partibus?' Who is the 'Princeps' whom Tulum deigns to serve: the Eastern Emperor or Theodoric? Above all, who is 'tantorum regum stirpe procreatus?' I think the turn of the sentence requires that it should be Tulum; but Dahn has evidently not so understood it, for in his Könige der Germanen (iii. 29, 30) he makes Tulum a conspicuous example of a man not of noble birth raised to high dignity, and says that the two long letters about him in the Variae contain no allusion to illustrious descent.]

'His toil so formed your character that we have the less need to labour. With you he discussed the sure blessings of peace, the doubtful gains of war; and--rare boon from a wise King--to you, in his anxiety, he confidently opened all the secrets of his breast. You, however, responded fully to his trust. You never put him off with doubtful answers. Ever patient and truthful, you won the entire confidence of your King, and dared even, hardest of all tasks, to argue against him for his own good.

'Thus did your noble deeds justify your alliance with the Amal race [apparently he has received an Amal princess in marriage], and thus did you become worthy to be joined in common fame with Gensemund, a man whose praises the whole world should sing, a man only made son by adoption in arms to the King, yet who exhibited such fidelity to the Amals that he transferred it even to their heirs, although he was himself sought for to be crowned[511]. Therefore will his fame live for ever, so long as the Gothic name endures.

'We look for even nobler things from you, because you are allied to us by race.'

 
8 - 10 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: On the elevation of Tulum to the Patriciate.
'We are conferring new lustre on your body by the promotion of Tulum. A man sprung from the noblest stock[512] he early undertook the duties of attendance in the King's bedchamber[513], a difficult post, where the knowledge that you share the secret counsels of royalty itself exposes you to enmity.

'In the dawn of manhood he went forth with our army to the war of Sirmium [A.D. 504], showed what one of our young nobles bred in peace could do in war, triumphed over the Huns[514], and gave to slaughter the Bulgarians, terrible to the whole world. Such warriors do even our nurseries send forth: thus does the preparation of a courageous heart supersede the necessity for martial training[515].

'Returned to the Court he became the most intimate counsellor of the King, who arranged with him all his plans for campaign, and so admitted him to his most secret thoughts that Tulum could always anticipate how Theodoric would act in every fresh conjuncture of events; and it may be said "by offering him counsel he ruled the King[516]."

'He then distinguished himself in the Gaulish campaign [A.D. 508], where he was already enrolled among the generals, directing the campaign by his prudence, and bravely sharing its dangers. In the fierce fight which was waged at Arles for the possession of the covered bridge across the Rhone[517], the bravery of our _candidatus_ was everywhere conspicuous, and he received many honourable wounds, those best and most eloquent champions of a soldier's courage.

'But a general ought not to be always fighting. I have pleasure in relating his next success, which was brilliant yet achieved without bloodshed. When the Frank and Burgundian again fell out, he was sent to Gaul [A.D. 523] to defend our frontier from hostile incursion. He then obtained for the Roman Republic, without any trouble, a whole Province while others were fighting. It was a triumph without a battle, a palm-branch without toil, a victory without slaughter.

'So great were his services in this campaign that Theodoric considered that he ought to be rewarded by the possession of large lands in the district which he had added to our dominions.

'A storm overtook him on his return to Italy: the remembrance of the vanished danger of that storm is sweet to us now[518]. In the wide, foaming sea his ship was swallowed up. He had to save himself by rowing; the sailors perished; he alone with the dear pledge of his love [one child?] escaped. Theodoric rushed to the shore, and would have dashed into the waves to save his friend, but had the delight of receiving him unharmed, saved manifestly by Divine protection for his present honours.

'Favour then, Conscript Fathers, the ambition of our _candidatus_, and open for the man of our choice the Hall of Liberty[519]. The race of Romulus deserves to have such martial colleagues as Tulum.'

 
8 - 11 TULUM, ILLUSTRIS AND PATRICIAN, TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Tulum's address to the Senate.
'I pray you to receive favourably the order of the King which makes me a member of your body.

'I have ever favoured the dignity of the Senate, as if with a prescience that I should one day hold it. When I shared the counsels of Theodoric, that chief of Kings, of glorious memory, I often by my intercessions obtained for members of your body Consulships, Patriciates, Praefectures; and now, behold, I am similarly honoured myself. Reflect, I pray, that by my accepting it, the genius of the Patriciate is exalted, since none of my fellow-countrymen will hold cheaply that rank in you which he sees honoured in me. Live in security, by the blessing of God; enjoy your prosperity with your children; and strive, now as always, to show forth the true Roman type of character. I shall defend those with whom I am now associated.'

 
8 - 12 KING ATHALARIC TO ARATOR, VIR ILLUSTRIS: Bestowing on him the rank of Comes Domesticorum.
'By raising Tulum to the Patriciate we have provided for the military strength of the State. Now must we see to it that she is equally adorned by the glory of letters, and for this purpose we raise you, still in the prime of life, to the rank of _Comes Domesticorum_. By your example it was seen that eloquence could be acquired elsewhere than at Rome, since in your own Province [probably Dalmatia] your father, who was an extremely learned man, taught you to excel in this art: a happy lot for you, who obtained from your father's love that accomplishment which most youths have to acquire with terror from a master.

'That I may say something here of a very _recherché_ character[520], I may mention that, according to some, letters were first invented by Mercury, who watched the flight of cranes by the Strymon, and turned the shapes assumed by their flying squadron into forms expressive of the various sounds of the human voice.

'You were sent upon a stately embassy[521] by the Provincials of Dalmatia to our grandfather; and there, not in commonplace words but with a torrent of eloquence, you so set forth their needs and the measures which would be for the advantage of the public, that Theodoric, a man of cautious temperament, listened to your flow of words without weariness, and all men desired still to listen, when you ceased speaking.

 
8 - 13 KING ATHALARIC TO AMBROSIUS: Conferring on him the Quaestorship.
'A steady gradation of honours secures good servants for the State. You have already served with credit the office of Count of the Private Largesses. And you have also filled satisfactorily the place of a high official who was dismissed in disgrace[522]. We now therefore promote you to the office of Quaestor, and expect you to be the Pliny to the new Trajan. Let your eloquent tongue adorn all that we have to say, and be fearless in suggesting to us all that is for the welfare of the State. A good Sovereign always allows his ministers to speak to him on behalf of justice, while it is the sure mark of a tyrant to refuse to listen to the voice of the ancient maxims of law. Remember that celebrated saying of Trajan to an orator: "Plead, if I am a good ruler, for the Republic and me; if I am a bad one, for the Republic against me[523]." But remember, that if we are thus severe upon ourselves we are equally strict with regard to you, and expect you to follow the example of your noble ancestors, and to abstain from everything like an infraction of the laws. We confer upon you the insignia of the Quaestorship for this fifth Indiction' [Sept. 1, 526--Sept. 1, 527].

 
8 - 14 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: elevation of Ambrosius to the Quaestorship.
'As a kind of door to our royal favour do we appoint Ambrosius to be our Quaestor. You know his merits of old: but, to speak only of recent matters[524], we may remind you that when your hearts were wrung with grief for the death of our glorious grandfather, it was by his mouth that we assured you of our determination to continue to you the blessings of good government.

'The presence of Ambrosius is full of dignity, and has a soothing influence which the words of his speech do but confirm[525]. It is unfortunate for an orator to have eloquence for his only gift, and to have to obliterate by his oration the unfavourable effect produced on the multitude by his appearance.

'We consider it not necessary to praise his eloquence. Of course a Quaestor is eloquent. While some have the government of a Province committed to them, others the care of the Treasury, he receives the ensigns of his dignity in order that by him his Sovereign's fame may be spread abroad through the whole world.'

 
8 - 15 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Election of Pope Felix III.
'We profess that we hear with great satisfaction that you have responded to the judgment of our glorious lord and grandfather in your election of a Bishop. It was right in sooth to obey the will of a good Sovereign, who, handling the matter with wise deliberation, although it had reference to a form of faith alien from his own[526], thought fit to select such a Pontiff as could rightfully be displeasing to none. You may thus recognise that his one chief desire was that Religion might flourish by good priests being supplied to all the churches.

'You have received then a man both admirably endowed with Divine grace and approved by royal scrutiny. Let no one any longer be involved in the old contention. There is no disgrace in being conquered when the King's power has helped the winning side. That man makes him [the successful candidate] his own, who manifests to him pure affection. For what cause for regret can there be, when you find in this man, those very qualities which you looked for in the other when you embraced his party?

'These are family quarrels[527], a battle without cold steel, a contest without hatred: by shouts, not wounds, a matter like this is decided.

'For even though the person who is desired be taken from you, yet naught is lost by the faithful, since the longed-for priesthood is possessed by them. [They have a Pope, if not just the Pope whom they wished for.] Wherefore on the return of your Legate, the Illustrious Publianus, we have thought it right to send to your assembly these letters of salutation. For we taste one of our highest pleasures when we exchange words with our nobles; and we doubt not that this is very sweet to you also, when you reflect that what you did by our grandsire's order is personally agreeable to ourselves.'

 
8 - 16 KING ATHALARIC TO OPILIO, COUNT OF THE SACRED LARGESSES (527): Opilio appointed Comes Sacrarum Largitionum.
'It is generally necessary to weigh carefully the merits of a new aspirant to the honours of the Court (aulicas dignitates); but in your case the merits of your family render this examination needless. Both your father and brother held the same office[528] which we are now entrusting to you, and one may say that this dignity has taken up its abode in your house.

'You learned the duties of a subordinate in the office under your brother; and often did he, leaning upon you as on a staff, take a little needful repose, knowing that all things would be attended to by you. The crowds of suppliants who resorted to him with their grievances, shared the confidence which the people had in you, and saw that you were already assuming the character of a good judge.

'Most useful also were your services to the throne at the commencement of the new reign, when men's minds were in trouble as to what should happen next. You bore the news of our accession to the Ligurians, and so strengthened them by your wise address that the error into which they had been betrayed by the sun-setting was turned into joy at the rising of our empire[529].'

'We therefore confer upon you the dignity of Count of the Sacred Largesses from this sixth Indiction (Sept. 1, 527). Enjoy all the privileges and emoluments which belonged to your predecessors. God forbid that those whose own actions are right should be shaken by any machinations of calumny. There was a time when even Judges were harassed by informers (delatores); but that time is over. Lay aside then all fear, you who have no errors to reproach yourself with, and freely enjoy the advantages of your dignity. Imitate your brother: even though a little way behind him you will still be before most holders of the office. He was a man of the highest authority and of proved constancy, and the highest testimony to his merits was afforded by the fact that even under a successor who was hostile to him the whole official staff of the palace was loud in his praises[530].'

[This letter is of great importance, as containing indirectly the expression of Cassiodorus' opinion on the trial of Boethius, and the tendency of that opinion seems to be against him and in favour of his accusers. Comparing this letter with v. 40, addressed to Cyprian, Cornes Sacrarum Largitionum and _son of Opilio_, we may with something like certainty construct this genealogical table:

OPILIO, C.S.L. (? son of the Consul of 453). _________________|_________________ | | CYPRIAN, OPILIO, C.S.L. 524. C.S.L. 527.

Now Cyprian, whose ready wit and ingenious eloquence had rendered him a favourite with Theodoric, is represented to us in the 'Philosophiae Consolatio' of Boethius (I. iv.) and in the 'Anonymus Valesii' (85) as the informer by whom Albinus and Boethius were accused of high treason. Opilio too (no doubt the same as the receiver of this letter) is described by Boethius (loc. cit.) as a man who on account of his numberless frauds had been ordered by the King to go into banishment, had taken refuge at the altar, and had been sternly bidden to leave Ravenna before a given day, and then had purchased pardon by coming forward as a _delator_ against Boethius.

Against all this passionate invective it is fair to set this remarkable letter of Cassiodorus, written it is true in the young King's name and presenting the Court view of these transactions, but still written after the death of Theodoric, and perhaps republished by Cassiodorus in the 'Variarum' after the downfall of the Gothic Monarchy. In any case the allusions to _delatores_ in this letter, considering the history of Opilio and his brother, are extraordinary.]

 
8 - 17 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: The same subject.
This letter, though it does not mention the name of Opilio, is evidently written on his promotion to the office of Comes Sacrarum Largitionum. It enumerates his good qualities, and declares that it is marvellous and almost fortunate for Athalaric that so suitable a candidate should not have been promoted in the reign of his grandfather. The father of Opilio was a man of noble character and robust body, who distinguished himself by his abstinence from the vices of the times and his preference for dignified repose in the stormy period of Odovacar[531].

'He was reputed an excellent man in those times, when the Sovereign was not a man of honour[532]. But why go back to his parentage, when his brother has set so noble an example. The friendship, the rivalry in virtue of these two brothers, is worthy of the good old times. Both are true to their friends; both are devoid of avarice. Both have kept their loyalty to their King unspotted, and no marvel, since they have first shown themselves true to their friends and colleagues.

'Distinguished by these virtues, our candidate has been fittingly allied by marriage with the noble family of Basilius[533].

'He has managed his private affairs so as to avoid the two extremes of parsimony and extravagance. He has become popular with the Goths by his manner of life, and with the Romans by his righteous judgments[534]; and has been over and over again chosen as a referee (Judex privatus), thus showing the high opinion in which his integrity is held.

'The Conscript Fathers are exhorted to endorse the favourable judgment of the King, by welcoming the new Count of Sacred Largesses into their body.'

 
8 - 18 KING ATHALARIC TO FELIX, QUAESTOR (527): Promotion of Felix to the Quaestorship.
'It is desirable that those who are appointed as Judges should know something of law, and most unfitting that he whom so many officials (_milites_) obey should be seen to be dependent for his law on some one of his subordinates.

'You long ago, when engaged in civil causes as an Advocate, were marked out by your Sovereign's eye[535]. He noted your eloquence, your fidelity, your youthful beauty, and your maturity of mind. No client could ask for more devotion than you showed in his cause; no Judge found in you anything to blame.

'Receive then now the dignity of Quaestor for this sixth Indiction (Sept. 1, 527), and judge in the Courts where hitherto you have pleaded.

'You are called Felix; act so as always to merit that name; for it is absurd to have a name which denotes one thing and to display the opposite in one's character. We think we have now said enough for a man of your good conscience. Many admonitions seem to imply a doubt of the character of him who receives them.' [A maxim often forgotten by Cassiodorus.]

 
8 - 19 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: promotion of Felix.
'As the sky with stars, or the meadow with flowers, so do we wish the Senate to be resplendent with the men of eminence whom we introduce into it. It is itself a seminary of Senators; but our favour and the dignities of our Court also rear them.

'The Quaestorship is the true mother of the senatorial dignity, since who can be fitter to take his seat in the Curia than he who has shared the counsels of his Sovereign?

'You know the eloquence of our candidate [Felix], his early triumphs, his modesty, his fidelity. To leave such a man unpromoted were a public loss; and he will always love the laws by the practice of which he has risen to eminence.

'Nor is he the first of his race to earn rhetorical distinction. His father shone so brilliantly in the Forum of Milan, that he bloomed forth with undying fruits from the soil of Cicero[536]. He stood against Magnus Olybrius, he was found equal in fluency to Eugenius[537] and many others whom Rome knew as foremost in their art. If the transmission of material wealth by long descent makes men noble, how much more should the inheritance of the treasures of the intellect give nobility.'

 
8 - 20 KING ATHALARIC TO ALBIENUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND PRAEFECTUS PRAETORIO[538] (527): Albienus made Praetorian Praefect.
'Your predecessor has been the model of a bad governor. As the North wind clears the face of the sky from the rain and clouds brought by the South wind, so do we look to you to repair the evils wrought by his misgovernment. In all things your best maxim will be to do exactly the opposite of what he did. He made himself hateful by his unjust prosecutions: do you become popular by your righteous deeds. He was rapacious: be you moderate. Soothe and relieve the harassed people entrusted to your charge. Receive for this sixth Indiction [Sept. 1, 527-528] the fasces of the Praefecture, and let the office of Praetorian Praefect return to its ancient fame, an object of praise to the whole world[539]. This office dates from Joseph, and rightly is he who holds it called by our laws Father of the Provinces, Father of the Empire.

'See that you avoid all unjust exactions. We cannot bear that our Treasury should be filled by unrighteous means.

'Your descent from a father who has held the same high office, and your intimate knowledge of the _Dicta prudentum_, warrant us in believing that you will make a good judge.'

 
 
8 - 22 KING ATHALARIC TO THE SENATE OF THE CITY OF ROME: Cyprian's elevation to the Patriciate.
In these two letters the high character and distinguished services of Cyprian are commemorated. 'Under Theodoric he distinguished himself both in war and peace. At the time of the war of Sirmium he was conspicuous both in his resistance to the fiery onslaught of the Bulgarians and in his active pursuit of them when their ranks were broken[540]. He then filled, with great credit to himself, the office of Referendarius[541]. Great was the responsibility of exercising peaceful as well as warlike offices under such a master as Theodoric. In fact the training for one was helpful for the other, since it required a soldier's courage and promptness to be always ready with a truthful and accurate reply to that keen, firm-minded ruler of men[542].

'Thence he was promoted to the dignity of Count of the Sacred Largesses, a post well suited to his pure, self-restrained character[543]. He is now growing old in body, but ever young in fame, and the King heartily wishes him increase of years to enjoy his renown.

'Rightly, too, is there now conferred upon him the dignity of _Patricius_, since he is the father of such noble sons, men whose childhood was passed in the palace under the very eye of Theodoric (thus like young eagles already learning to gaze upon the sun), and who now cultivate the friendship of the Goths, learn from them all martial exercises, speak their language, and thus give evident tokens of their future fidelity to the Gothic nation[544].

'The Senate is therefore exhorted to welcome its thus promoted colleague, who at each accession of rank has shown himself yet worthier of his high place, and whom grandfather and grandson have both delighted to honour. Thus will it renew the glories of the Decii and the Corvini, who were its sons in the days of old.'

 
8 - 23 KING ATHALARIC TO BERGANTINUS, VIR ILLUSTRIS AND COMES PATRIMONII: Gifts to Theodahad.
'Kings should always be generous, but especially to those of their own family.

'Therefore we desire your Greatness to transfer the farms herein described, to the exalted and most honourable Theodahad, weighing out to him so many solidi, out of that which was formerly the patrimony of his magnificent Mother; and we guarantee to him the absolute ownership of such farms, free from any claims to the inheritance on our part[545].

'We trust to his sincerity and good faith, that in the future he will deserve the remainder of the above-mentioned patrimony, with the addition of the whole quantity[546].

'What can we deny to such a man, whose obedience might claim a higher reward even were he not our cousin--a man who is not puffed up by any pride of his noble birth, humble in his modesty, always uniform in his prudence? Therefore instruct the Cartarii of your office to make over the aforesaid farms to his Actores without delay[547].'

 
8 - 24 KING ATHALARIC TO THE CLERGY OF THE ROMAN CHURCH: Ecclesiastical immunities.
'For the gift of kingly power we owe an infinite debt to God, whose ministers ye are.

'Ye state in your tearful memorial to us that it has been an ordinance of long custom that anyone who has a suit of any kind against a servant of the sacrosanct Roman Church should first address himself to the chief Priest of that City, lest haply your clergy, being profaned by the litigation of the Forum, should be occupied in secular rather than religious matters. And you add that one of your Deacons has, to the disgrace of religion, been so sharply handled by legal process that the Sajo[548] has dared actually to take him into his own custody.

'This dishonour to the Ministers of holy things is highly displeasing to our inborn reverence, yet we are glad that it gives us the opportunity of paying part of our debt to Heaven.

'Therefore, considering the honour of the Apostolic See, and wishing to meet the desires of the petitioners, we by the authority of this letter decree in regular course[549]:

'That if anyone shall think he has a good cause for going to law with a person belonging to the Roman clergy, he shall first present himself for hearing at the judgment-seat of the most blessed Pope, in order that the latter may either decide between the two in his own holy manner, or may delegate the cause to a Jurisconsult to be ended by him. And if, perchance, which it is impiety to believe, the reasonable desire of the petitioner shall have been evaded, then may he come to the secular courts with his grievance, when he can prove that his petitions have been spurned by the Bishop of the aforesaid See[550].

'Should any litigant be so dishonest and so irreverent, both towards the Holy See and our authority, as to disregard this order [and proceed first in our tribunals against one of the Roman clergy], he shall forfeit 10 lbs. of gold [£400], to be exacted by the officers of the Count of Sacred Largesses and distributed by the Pope to the poor; and he shall lose his suit in addition, notwithstanding any decree which he may have gained in the secular court.

'Meanwhile do you, whom our judgments thus venerate, live according to the ordinances of the Church. It is a great wickedness in you to admit such crimes as do not become the conversation even of secular men. Your profession is the heavenly life. Do not condescend to the grovelling wishes and vulgar errors of ordinary mortals. Let the men of this world be coerced by human laws; do you obey the precepts of righteousness.'

 
8 - 25 KING ATHALARIC TO JOANNES, VIR SPECTABILIS, REFERENDARIUS: Confirmation of Tulum's gift of property in the Lucullanum.
'It is a very fitting thing to confirm the generosity of others towards persons who might well have received gifts from oneself. We therefore declare that in your case the gift is another's but the will to give is our own, and the King has only been anticipated by the rapid bounty of the subject[551].

'Everyone knows that our grandfather wished to give you the house of Agnellus in the Castrum Lucullanum, but could not do so having already given it to the Patrician Tulum[552]. Tulum, however, with his usual generosity, seconding the wishes of his master, formally conveyed the property to you; and that conveyance we now confirm, guaranteeing the quiet possession of it to you and your heirs for all time to come. If any doubt exist as to your title, by any mischance, or by reason of any enquiry, such doubt is exploded by the authority of this letter of ours[553].

'And should any envious person, in contempt of our royal will, dare to raise any question in this matter hereafter, either on behalf of the Fiscus or of any private individual, we declare that he shall pay to you, or to the person to whom you may have assigned the said house, 100 lbs. of gold (£4,000) by way of penalty.'

[Why should there be the necessity of this royal confirmation of a transaction between two private individuals, Tulum and Joannes, and this tremendous penalty on all future impugners of it?

Evidently because the property had been impressed with the character of State domain, and it was doubtful how far Tulum's alienation of it might stand good against the claims of future Sovereigns.

This becomes quite clear when we reflect what is the property to which this letter refers. It is either the whole or a part of the Lucullanum, to which the deposed Emperor, Romulus Augustulus, was banished in 476. On his death, as we may conjecture, this property, one of the most delightful places of residence in Italy, has been given by Theodoric to Tulum, perhaps just after he had distinguished himself in the Gaulish campaign of 508. For some reason or other, Tulum has alienated it (ostensibly, given it) to the Reporter Joannes, no doubt a Roman, who is apparently nervous lest his title to it should hereafter be impugned on the ground that the palace of the last Roman Emperor was national property. Hence this letter. There is some difficulty and variation between the MSS. in the words describing the property: 'Saepe dicta domus paternae recordationis Agnelli, in Lucullano castro posita.' For _paternae_, Migne's editor reads _patriciae_. The forthcoming critical edition of the 'Variae' will show whether there is any support in the MSS. for a conjecture which I cannot help entertaining that _Agnelli_ is an error for _Augustuli_.]

 
8 - 26 KING ATHALARIC TO ALL THE INHABITANTS OF REATE AND NURSIA: Gothic settlers in the Sabine territory exhorted to obedience to their Prior, Quidila.
'Our glorious grandfather had arranged that, in accordance with your desire, Quidila, son of Sibia, should be your Captain (Prior). We confirm this appointment, and desire you to obey him in all things. You are so far moulded by the character of our grandfather that you willingly obey both the laws and the Judges. Our enemies are best vanquished, and the favour both of Heaven and of other nations is best conciliated for us, by our obeying the principles of justice. If anyone is in need of anything, let him seek to obtain it from the generosity of his Sovereign rather than by the strength of his own right hand, since it is for your advantage that the Romans be at peace, who, in filling our Treasury, at the same time multiply your donatives.'

 
8 - 27 KING ATHALARIC TO DUMERIT THE SAJO, AND TO FLORENTINUS, A ZEALOUS OFFICER OF THE COURT[554]: Robbery in the district of Faenza to be suppressed.
'Justice must be shown upon the wicked. Different diseases require different remedies.

'Let your Devotion speed instantly through the territory of Faventia, and if you find any persons, either Goths or Romans, concerned in the plunder of the possessors, punish them severely. How much better it would be for those misguided persons to live according to our will, and earn the reward of pleasing us.' [The last sentence is obscure, and perhaps the text is corrupt.]

 
8 - 28 KING ATHALARIC TO CUNIGAST, VIR ILLUSTRIS: Possessores (or Coloni?) forced to become slaves.
'Our Serenity has been moved by the grievous petition of Constantius and Venerius, who complain that Tanca [probably a Goth] has wrested from them the farm which is called Fabricula, which belonged to them in their own right, together with the stock upon it[556], and has compelled them, in order to prevent similar forcible demands upon their property in future, to allow the worst lot of all--the condition of slavery--to be imposed upon them, who are really free[557].

'Let your Greatness therefore summon Tanca to your judgment-seat, and, after hearing all parties, pronounce a just judgment and one accordant to your character. For though it is a serious matter to oust a lord from his right, it is contrary to the feelings of our age to press down free necks under the yoke of slavery.

'Let Tanca therefore either establish his right to the slaves and their property, or, if they are proved free, let him give them up, whole and unharmed: in which case we will inflict upon him no further penalty.'

 
8 - 29 KING ATHALARIC TO THE DIGNIFIED CULTIVATORS[558] AND CURIALS OF THE CITY OF PARMA: Sanitary measures needed in Parma.
'You ought willingly to co-operate in that which is being done for the advantage of your town. When it was suffering from a long drought, our grandfather, with God's help, watered it with the life-giving wave. Cleanse out then the mouths of your sewers, lest otherwise, being checked in its flow by the accumulated filth, it should surge back into your houses, and bring into them the pollution which it was meant to wash away.

'The Spectabilis Genesius is appointed to superintend this work, and to quicken your zeal regarding it.'

 
8 - 30 KING ATHALARIC TO GENESIUS, VIR SPECTABILIS: The same subject.
'Through love of your city our grandfather, with royal generosity, constructed an aqueduct of the ancient type[559] for you. But it is of no use to provide a good water-supply unless your sewers are in good order. Therefore let your Sublimity set the citizens of Parma diligently to work at this business, that all ancient channels, whether underground or those which run by the sides of the streets, be diligently repaired[560], in order that when the longed-for stream flows into your town it be not hindered by any obstacle.

'How fair is water in a running stream, but how ugly in puddles and swamps; it is good then neither for man nor beast. Without water city and country alike languish; and rightly did the ancients punish one who was unfit for human society by forbidding all men to give him water. Therefore you ought all heartily to combine for this most useful work, since the man who is not touched by the comeliness of his city has not yet the mind of a citizen.'

 
8 - 31 KING ATHALARIC TO SEVERUS, VIR SPECTABILIS: Dissuasions from a country life, and praises of Cassiodorus' native land of Bruttii.
'Since you, when on the staff of the Praefect, have learned the principles of statesmanship, we are sure that you will agree with us that cities are the chief ornament of human society. Let the wild beasts live in fields and woods: men ought to draw together into cities. Even among birds we see that those of gentle disposition--like thrushes, storks, and doves--love to flock together, while the greedy hawk, intent on its bloody pastime, seeks solitude.

'Now we say that the man who shuns human society becomes at once an object of suspicion. Let therefore the Possessores and Curiales of Bruttii return to their cities. The Coloni may cultivate the soil--that is what their name denotes[561]; but the men whom we decorate with civic honours ought to live in cities.

'In truth it is a lovely land. Ceres and Pallas have crowned it with their respective gifts (corn and oil); the plains are green with pastures, the slopes are purple with vineyards. Above all is it rich in its vast herds of horses[562], and no wonder, since the dense shade of its forests protects them from the bites of flies, and provides them with ever verdant pasture even in the height of summer. Cool waters flow from its lofty heights; fair harbours on both its shores woo the commerce of the world.

'There the countryman enjoys the good food of the citizen, the poor man the abundance of the wealthy[563]. If such then be the charms even of the country in your Province, why should you shirk living in its cities[564]?

'Why should so many men refined by literature skulk in obscurity? The boy goes to a good school, becomes imbued with the love of letters, and then, when he is come to man's estate and should be seeking the Forum in order to display his talents, he suddenly changes into a boor, unlearns all that he has learned, and in his love for the fields forgets what is due to a reasonable love for himself. And yet even birds love human fellowship, and the nightingale boldly rears her brood close to the haunts of men.

'Let the cities then return to their old splendour; let none prefer the charms of the country to the walls reared by the men of old. Why should not everyone be attracted by the concourse of noble persons, by the pleasures of converse with his equals? To stroll through the Forum, to look in at some skilful craftsman at his work, to push one's own cause through the law courts, then between whiles to play with the counters of Palamedes (draughts), to go to the baths with one's acquaintances, to indulge in the friendly emulation of the banquet--these are the proper employments of a Roman noble; yet not one of them is tasted by the man who chooses to live always in the country with his farm-servants[565].

'We order therefore that all Possessores and Curiales shall, according to their relative means, find bail and give bonds, promising that they will for the larger part of the year reside in some city, such as they may choose[566]. And thus, while not wholly debarred from the pleasures of the country, they will furnish to the cities their proper adornment of citizens.'

 
8 - 32 KING ATHALARIC TO SEVERUS, VIR SPECTABILIS: The Fountain of Arethusa.
'Nimfadius (Vir Sublimis) was journeying to the King's Comitatus on some affair of his own, when, wearied with his journey, he lay down to rest, and let his beasts of burden graze round the fountain of Arethusa.

'This fountain, situated in the territory of Squillace[567], at the foot of the hills and above the sand of the sea, makes a green and pleasant place all round it, fringed with rustling reeds as with a crown. It has certain marvellous properties: for let a man go to it in silence and he sees it calmly flowing, more like a pond than a fountain. But let him cough or speak with a loud voice, and it becomes violently agitated, heaving to and fro like a pot boiling. Strange power this of a fountain to answer a man. I have read that some fountains can change the colours of the animals that drink at them; that others can turn wood dropped into them to stone. The human reason is altogether unable to understand such things as these.

'But let us return to the complaint of our suppliant. Nimfadius asserts that, while he was resting, the country people artfully drove off his beasts of burden.

'This kind of crime brings our times into disgrace, and turns the charm of that quiet resting-place into disgust. Diligently enquire into it, for the credit of our Comitatus is involved in our subjects being able to journey to it in safety. At first, no doubt, the offenders will lie close, and seem as silent as the unmoved Arethusa. But begin your investigations, and they will soon break forth, like that fountain, with angry exclamations, in the midst of which you will discover the truth. Punish the offenders severely; for we should regret that owing to the excesses of robbers that wonderful and joy-bringing fountain should be deserted.'

 
8 - 33 KING ATHALARIC TO SEVERUS, VIR SPECTABILIS: The Feast of St. Cyprian.
'We hear that the rustics are indulging in disorderly practices, and robbing the market-people who come from all quarters to the chief fair of Lucania on the day of St. Cyprian. This must by all means be suppressed, and your Respectability should quietly collect a sufficient number of the owners and tenants of the adjoining farms[568] to overpower these freebooters and bring them to justice. Any rustic or other person found guilty of disturbing the fair should be at once punished with the stick[569], and then exhibited with some mark of infamy upon him[570].

'This fair, which according to the old superstition was named Leucothea [after the nymph], from the extreme purity of the fountain at which it is held, is the greatest fair in all the surrounding country. Everything that industrious Campania, or opulent Bruttii, or cattle-breeding Calabria[571], or strong Apulia produces, is there to be found exposed for sale, on such reasonable terms that no buyer goes away dissatisfied. It is a charming sight to see the broad plains filled with suddenly-reared houses formed of leafy branches intertwined: all the beauty of the most leisurely-built city, and yet not a wall to be seen. There stand ready boys and girls, with the attractions which belong to their respective sexes and ages, whom not captivity but freedom sets a price upon. These are with good reason sold by their parents, since they themselves gain by their very servitude. For one cannot doubt that they are benefited even as slaves [or servants?], by being transferred from the toil of the fields to the service of cities[572].

'What can I say of the bright and many-coloured garments? what of the sleek and well-fed cattle offered at such a price as to tempt any purchaser?

'The place itself is situated in a wide and pleasant plain, a suburb of the ancient city of Cosilinum, and has received the name of Marcilianum from the founder of these sacred springs[573].

'And this is in truth a marvellous fountain, full and fresh, and of such transparent clearness that when you look through it you think you are looking through air alone. Choice fishes swim about in the pool, perfectly tame, because if anyone presumes to capture them he soon feels the Divine vengeance. On the morning which precedes the holy night [of St. Cyprian], as soon as the Priest begins to utter the baptismal prayer, the water begins to rise above its accustomed height. Generally it covers but five steps of the well, but the brute element, as if preparing itself for miracles, begins to swell, and at last covers two steps more, never reached at any other time of the year. Truly a stupendous miracle, that streams of water should thus stand still or increase at the sound of the human voice, as if the fountain itself desired to listen to the sermon.

'Thus hath Lucania a river Jordan of her own. Wherefore, both for religion's sake and for the profit of the people, it behoves that good order should be kept among the frequenters of the fair, since in the judgment of all, that man must be deemed a villain who would sully the joys of such happy days.'

 
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9 - 1 KING ATHALARIC TO HILDERIC, KING OF THE VANDALS (A.D. 527): Murder of Amalafrida, widow of King Thrasamund and sister of Theodoric.
'Friendship and relationship are turned to bitterness by the tidings that Amalafrida, of divine memory, the distinguished ornament of our race, has been put to death by you[574]. If you had any cause of offence against her, you ought to have sent her to us for judgment. What you have done is a species of parricide. If the succession, on the death of her husband, passed to another [yourself], that was no reason why a woman should be embroiled in the contest. It was really an addition to your nobility to have the purple dignity of the Amal blood allied to the lineage of the Hasdingi.

'Our Goths keenly feel the insults conveyed in this deed, since to slay the royal lady of another race is to despise the valour of that race and doubt its willingness to avenge her.

'We send you two ambassadors to hear what your excuses are. We hear that you pretend that her death was natural. And you also must send ambassadors in return to us to explain the matter, without war or bloodshed, and either pacify us or acknowledge your guilt. If you do not do this, all ties of alliance between us are broken, and we must leave you to the judgment of the Divine Majesty, which heard the blood of Abel crying from the ground.'

 
9 - 2 EDICT OF KING ATHALARIC: Oppression of the Curiales.
'The body of the Republic is so tempered together that if one member suffers all the members suffer with it. The Curiales, whose name is derived from their care (cura) and forethought, are, we are told, molested by hostile proceedings, so that what was bestowed upon them as an ho