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In this volume are presented English Translations of the three Roman Historians, Sallust, Florus, and Velleius Paterculus.
SALLUST,” an eminent scholar once remarked to me, “it is more easy to dilute than to transmute.” It is hoped that in the following pages the reader will find Sallust's Latin transmuted into English without any unnecessary dilution.
Some minor liberties have been taken with his expressions, in order to avoid stiffness, and to represent the author fairly in an English dress; but none inconsistent with a faithful adherence to his sense.
On all difficult or disputed passages the commentators have been carefully consulted. References have been given in the notes, wherever they appeared necessary, as well to the older critics, of whom Cortius is the chief, as to the more recent, among whom the principal are Gerlach, Kritz, and Dietsch. All the Fragments of Sallust that can be of
interest to the English reader, have been translated; and that nothing might be wanting to render the work complete, versions of the spurious Epistles to Cæsar, which present a good imitation of Sallust's style, and of the Declamations which
pass under the names of Sallust and Cicero, have been added.
The text at first intended to be followed was that of Cor. tius; but the readings given by later critics appeared often so much better, that they were adopted in preference; indeed, the present version approaches nearer to the text of Kritz than to that of any other editor.
FLORUS, whose work has come down to us entire, is ren-
What remains of VELLEIUS PATERCULUS, with whom time
J. S. W.
BIOGRAPHICAL NOTICE OF SALLUST.
SALLUST was born at Amiternum, a town in the Sabine territory, on the first of October', in the year six hundred and sixty-six? from the foundation of Rome, eighty-seven years before Christ, and in the seventh consulship of Marius.
The name of his father was Caius Sallustius3; that of his mother is unknown. His family was thought by Crinitus, and sone others, to have been patrician, but by Gerlach, and most of the later critics, is pronounced to have been plebeian, because he held the office of tribune of the people, because he makes observations unfavourable to the nobility in his writings, and because his grandson, according to Tacitus“, was only of equestrian rank.
The ingenuity of criticism has been exercised in determining whether his name should be written with a double or single l. Jerome Wolfiuss, and Gerlach, are in favour of the single letter, depending chiefly on inscriptions, and on the presumption that the name is derived from salus or sal. But inscriptions vary; the etymology of the word is uncertain; and to derive it from sal would authorise either mode of spelling. All the Latin authors, both in prose and poetry, have the name with the double letter, and it seems better, as Vossiuse remarks, to adhere to their practice. Among the Greeks, Dion and Eusebius have the single letter; in some other writers it is found doubled.
Another question raised respecting his name, is whether he should be called Sallustius Crispus, or Crispus Sallustius. The latter mode is adopted by Le Clerc, Cortius, Havercamp, and some other critics; but De Brosses? argues conclusively in favour of the former method; as Sallustius, from its termination, is evidently the name of the family or gens; and Crispus, which denotes quelque habitude du corps, only a surname to distinguish one of its branches. Crispus Sallustius is found, indeed, in manuscripts; and, according to Cortius, in the best ; 'but on what reasonable grounds can it be justified? It was 1 Euseb. Chron.
2 Clinton, Fast. Rom.
5 Apud Voss.
? Vie de Sall., § 1.
perhaps adopted by some copyist from the ode of Horacel addressed to Sallust's nephew, and inconsiderately continued by his successors.
He was removed early in life to Rome, that he might be educated under Atteius Prætextatus, a celebrated grammarian of that age, who styled himself Philologus, and who was afterwards tutor to Asinius Pollio?. Atteius treated Sallust with very great distinction'.
He may be supposed to have soon grown conscious of his powers“; and appears at an early period of his life to have devoted himself to study, with an intention to distinguish himself in historyó.
His devotion to literature, however, was not so great as to detain him from indulgence in pleasure ; for he became, if we allow any credit to the old declaimer, infamous, ætatis tirocinio, for debauchery and extravagance. He took possession of his father's house in his father's lifetime, and sold it; an act by which he brought his father to the grave; and he was twice, for some misconduct, arraigned before the magistrates, and escaped on both occasions only through the perjury of his judges.
When we cite this rhetorician, we must not forget that we cite an anonymous reviler, yet we must suppose with Gerlach, and with Meisner, the German translator of Sallust, that we quote a writer who grounded his invectives on reports and opinions current at the time in which he lived.
Sallust next thought of aspiring to political distinction’; but “the usual method of atraining notice,” says De Brossess, “which was to secure friends and chants by pleading the causes of individuals at the bar, he seems not to have adopted;" since, as is known, no orations spoken by him are in existence, and, as is thought, no mention is made of such orations in any other author.
Mention, however, is made of orations of Sallust, at whatever time delivered, in the well-known passage of Seneca the rhetorician'. When Seneca inquired of Cassius Severus, why he, who was so eminent in pleading important causes, displayed so little talent in pronouncing fictitious declamations, the orator replied, Quod in me miraris, pene omnibus evenit, &c. Orationes Sallustii in honorem historiarum leguntur. “ What you think extraordinary in me, is common to all men of ability. The greatest geniuses, to whom I am conscious of my great inferiority, have generally excelled only in one species of composition. The felicity of Virgil in poetry deserted him in prose ; the eloquence of Cicero's orations is not to be found in his verses ; and the speeches of Sallust are read only as a foil to his histories.” The speeches which are here
10d., ii., 2, 3.
2 Suet. de Ill. Gramm., c. 10.
9 Præf. in Controv., 1. iii., p. 231, ed. Par. 1607.