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Part 1

This webpage reproduces part of the
Historia Augusta

published in the Loeb Classical Library,

The text is in the public domain.

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(Vol. I) Historia Augusta

 p47  The Life of Hadrian
Part 2

(For the beginning of chapter 14, see Part 1.)

(14)[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 8 In poetry and in letters Hadrian was greatly interested. In arithmetic, geometry, and painting he was very expert. 9 Of his knowledge of flute-playing and singing he even boasted openly. He ran to excess in the gratification of his desires, and wrote much verse about the subjects of his passion. He composed love-poems too. 10 He was also a connoisseur of arms, had a thorough knowledge of warfare, and knew how to use gladiatorial weapons. 11 He was, in the same person, austere and genial, dignified and playful, dilatory and quick to act, niggardly and generous, deceitful and straightforward, cruel and merciful, and always in all things changeable.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 15 1 His friends he enriched greatly, even though they did not ask it, while to those who did ask, he refused nothing. 2 And yet he was always ready to listen to whispers about his friends, and in the end he treated almost all of them as enemies, even the closest and even those whom he had raised to the highest of honours, such as Attianus​126 and Nepos​127 and Septicius Clarus. 3 Eudaemon, for example, who had been his accomplice in obtaining the imperial power, he reduced to poverty; 4 Polaenus and Marcellus​128 he drove to suicide; 5 Heliodorus​129 he assailed in a most slanderous pamphlet; 6 Titianus​130 he allowed to be accused as an accomplice in an attempt to seize the empire and even to be outlawed; 7 Ummidius Quadratus,​131 Catilius Severus, and Turbo he persecuted  p49 vigorously 8 and in order to prevent Servianus, his brother-in‑law, from surviving him, he compelled him to commit suicide, although the man was then in his ninetieth year. 9 And he even took vengeance on freedmen and sometimes on soldiers. 10 And although he was very deft at prose and at verse and very accomplished in all the arts, yet he used to subject the teachers of these arts, as though more learned than they, to ridicule, scorn, and humiliation. 11 With these very professors and philosophers he often debated by means of pamphlets or poems issued by both sides in turn. 12 And once Favorinus,​132 when he had yielded to Hadrian's criticism of a word which he had used, raised a merry laugh among his friends. For when they reproached him for having done wrong in yielding to Hadrian in the matter of a word used by reputable authors, he replied: 13 "You are urging a wrong course, my friends, when you do not suffer me to regard as the most learned of men the one who has thirty legions".

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 16 1 So desirous of a wide-spread reputation was Hadrian that he even wrote his own biography; this he gave to his educated freedmen, with instructions to publish it under their own names.​133 For indeed, Phlegon's writings, it is said, are Hadrian's in reality. 2 He wrote Catachannae, a very obscure work in imitation of Antimachus.​134 3 And when the poet Florus​135 wrote to him:

 p51  I don't want to be a Caesar,

Stroll about among the Britons,

Lurk about among the . . . .

And endure the Scythian winters,"

4 he wrote back

I don't want to be a Florus,

Stroll about among the taverns,

Lurk about among the cook-shops

And endure the round fat insects."

5 Furthermore, he loved the archaic style of writing, and he used to take part in debates. 6 He preferred Cato to Cicero, Ennius to Vergil, Caelius​136 to Sallust; and with the same self-assurance he expressed opinions about Homer and Plato. 7 In astrology he considered himself so proficient that on the Kalends of January he would actually write down all that might happen to him in the whole ensuing year, and in the year in which he died, indeed, he wrote down everything that he was going to do, down to the very hour of his death.137

8 However ready Hadrian might have been to criticize musicians, tragedians, comedians, grammarians, and rhetoricians, he nevertheless bestowed both honours and riches upon all who professed these arts, though he always tormented them with his questions. 9 And although he was himself responsible for the fact that many of them left his presence with their feelings hurt, to see anyone with hurt feelings, he used to say, he could hardly endure. 10 He treated with the greatest friendship the philosophers Epictetus​138 and Heliodorus, and various grammarians, rhetoricians, musicians, geometricians — not to mention all by name — painters and astrologers; and among  p53 them Favorinus, many claim, was conspicuous above all the rest. 11 Teachers who seemed unfit for their profession he presented with riches and honours and then dismissed from the practice of their profession.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 17 1 Many whom he had regarded as enemies when a private citizen, when emperor he merely ignored; for example, on becoming emperor, he said to one man whom he had regarded as a mortal foe, "You have escaped". 2 When he himself called any to military service, he always supplied them with horses, mules, clothing, cost of maintenance, and indeed their whole equipment. 3 At the Saturnalia and Sigillaria​139 he often surprised his friends with presents, and he gladly received gifts from them and again gave others in return. 4 In order to detect dishonesty in his caterers, when he gave banquets with several tables he gave orders that platters from the other tables, even the lowest, should be set before himself. 5 He surpassed all monarchs in his gifts. He often bathed in the public baths, even with the meanest crowd. And a jest of his made in the bath became famous. 6 For on a certain occasion, seeing a veteran, whom he had known in the service, rubbing his back and the rest of his body against the wall, he asked him why he had the marble rub him, and when the man replied that it was because he did not own a slave, he presented him with some slaves and the cost of their maintenance. 7 But another time, when he saw a number of old men rubbing themselves against the wall for the purpose of arousing the generosity of the Emperor, he ordered them to be called out and then to rub one another in turn. 8 His love for the common people he loudly expressed. So fond was he of travel, that he wished to inform himself in  p55 person about all that he had read concerning all parts of the world. 9 Cold and bad weather he could bear with such endurance that he never covered his head. 10 He showed a multitude of favours to many kings,​140 but from a number he even purchased peace, and by some he was treated with scorn; 11 to many he gave huge gifts, but none greater than to the king of the Hiberi,​141 for to him he gave an elephant and a band of fifty men, in addition to magnificent presents. 12 And having himself received huge gifts from Pharasmanes, including some cloaks embroidered with gold, he sent into the arena three hundred condemned criminals dressed in gold-embroidered cloaks for the purpose of ridiculing the gifts of the king.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 18 1 When he tried cases, he had in his council​142 not only his friends and the members of his staff, but also jurists, in particular Juventius Celsus,​143 Salvus Julianus,​144 Neratius Priscus,​145 and others, only those, however, whom the senate had in every instance approved. 2 Among other decisions he ruled that in no community should any house be demolished for the purpose of transporting any building-materials to another city.​146 3 To the child of an outlawed person he  p57 granted a twelfth of the property.​147 4 Accusations for lèse-majesté he did not admit. 5 Legacies from persons unknown to him he refused, and even those left to him by acquaintances he would not accept if they had any children. 6 In regard to treasure-trove, he ruled that if anyone made a find on his own property he might keep it, if on another's land, he should turn over half to the proprietor thereof, if on the state's, he should share the find equally with the privy-purse.​148 7 He forbade masters to kill their slaves, and ordered that any who deserved it should be sentenced by the courts. 8 He forbade anyone to sell a slave or a maid-servant to a procurer or trainer of gladiators without giving a reason therefor. 9 He ordered that those who had wasted their property, if legally responsible, should be flogged in the amphitheatre and then let go. Houses of hard labour for slaves and free he abolished. 10 He provided separate baths for the sexes. 11 He issued an order that, if a slave-owner were murdered in his house, no slaves should be examined save those who were near enough to have had knowledge of the murder.149

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 19 1 In Etruria he held a praetor­ship​150 while emperor.  p59 In the Latin towns he was dictator and aedile and duumvir,​151 in Naples demarch,​152 in his native city​153 duumvir with the powers of censor. This office he held at Hadria, too, his second native city, as it were, and at Athens he was archon.154

2 In almost every city he built some building and gave public games. 3 At Athens he exhibited in the stadium a hunt of a thousand wild beasts, 4 but he never called away from Rome a single wild‑beast-hunter or actor. 5 In Rome, in addition to popular entertainments of unbounded extravagance, he gave spices to the people in honour of his mother-in‑law,​155 and in honour of Trajan he caused essences of balsam and saffron to be poured over the seats of the theatre. 6 And in the theatre he presented plays of all kinds in the ancient manner and had the court-players appear before the public. 7 In the Circus he had many wild beasts killed and often a whole hundred of lions. 8 He often gave the people exhibitions of military Pyrrhic dances,​156 and he frequently attended gladiatorial shows. 9 He built public buildings in all places and without number, but he inscribed his own name on none of them except the temple of his father Trajan.​157 10 At Rome he restored the Pantheon,​158 the Voting-enclosure,​159 the Basilica of Neptune,​160 very  p61 many temples, the Forum of Augustus,​161 the Baths of Agrippa,​162 and dedicated all of them in the names of their original builders. 11 Also he constructed the bridge named after himself, a tomb on the banks of the Tiber,​163 and the temple of the Bona Dea.​164 12 With the aid of the architect Decrianus he raised the Colossus​165 and, keeping it in an upright position, moved it away from the place in which the Temple of Rome​166 is now, though its weight was so vast that he had to furnish for the work as many as twenty-four elephants. 13 This statue he then consecrated to the Sun, after removing the features of Nero, to whom it had previously been dedicated, and he also planned, with the assistance of the architect Apollodorus, to make a similar one for the Moon.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 20 1 Most democratic in his conservations, even with the very humble, he denounced all who, in the belief that they were thereby maintaining the imperial dignity, begrudged him the pleasure of such friendliness. 2 In the Museum at Alexandria​167 he propounded many questions to the teachers and answered himself what he had propounded. 3 Marius Maximus says that  p63 he was naturally cruel and performed so many kindnesses only because he feared that he might meet the fate which had befallen Domitian.168

4 Though he cared nothing for inscriptions on his public works, he gave the name of Hadrianopolis to many cities, as, for example, even to Carthage and a section of Athens;​169 5 and he also gave his name to aqueducts without number. 6 He was the first to appoint a pleader for the privy-purse.170

7 Hadrian's memory was vast and his ability was unlimited; for instance, he personally dictated his speeches and gave opinions on all questions. 8 He was also very witty, and of his jests many still survive. The following one has even become famous: When he had refused a request to a certain grey-haired man, and the man repeated the request but this time with dyed hair, Hadrian replied: "I have already refused this to your father." 9 Even without the aid of a nomenclator he could call by name a great many people, whose names he had heard but once and then all in a crowd; indeed, he could correct the nomenclators when they made mistakes, as they not infrequently did, 10 and he even knew the names of the veterans whom he had discharged at various times. He could repeat from memory, after a rapid reading, books which to most men were not known at all. 11 He wrote, dictated, listened, and, incredible as it seems, conversed with his friends, all at one and the same time. He had as complete a knowledge of the state-budget in all its details as  p65 any careful householder has of his own household. 12 His horses and dogs he loved so much that he provided burial-places for them,​171 13 and in one locality he founded a town called Hadrianotherae,​172 because once he had hunted successfully there and killed a bear.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 21 1 He always inquired into the actions of all his judges, and persisted in his inquiries until he satisfied himself of the truth about them. 2 He would not allow his freedmen to be prominent in public affairs or to have any influence over himself, and he declared that all his predecessors were to blame for the faults of their freedmen; he also punished all his freedmen who boasted of their influence over him. 3 With regard to his treatment of his slaves, the following incident, stern but almost humorous, is still related. Once when he saw one of his slaves walk away from his presence between two senators, he sent someone to give him a box on the ear and say to him: "Do not walk between those whose slave you may some day be". 4 As an article of food he was singularly fond of tetrapharmacum,​173 which consisted of pheasant, sow's udders, ham, and pastry.

5 During his reign there were famines, pestilence, and earthquakes. The distress caused by all these calamities he relieved to the best of his ability, and also he aided many communities which had been devastated by them. 6 There was also an overflow of the Tiber. 7 To many communities he gave Latin citizen­ship,​174 and to many others he remitted their tribute.

 p67  8 There were no campaigns of importance during his reign,​175 and the wars that he did wage were brought to a close almost without arousing comment. 9 The soldiers loved him much on account of his very great interest in the army​176 and for his great liberality to them besides. 10 The Parthians always regarded him as a friend because he took away the king​177 whom Trajan had set over them. 11 The Armenians were permitted to have their own king,​178 whereas under Trajan they had had a governor, 12 and the Mesopotamians were relieved of the tribute which Trajan had imposed. 13 The Albanians​179 and Hiberians he made his friends by lavishing gifts upon their kings, even though they had scorned to come to him. 14 The kings of the Bactrians sent envoys to him to beg humbly for his friendship.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 22 1 He very often assigned guardians. Discipline in civil life he maintained as rigorously as he did in military. 2 He ordered senators and knights to wear the toga whenever they appeared in public except when they were returning from a banquet, 3 and he himself, when in Italy, always appeared thus clad. 4 At banquets, when senators came, he received them standing, and he always reclined at table dressed either in a Greek cloak or in a toga. 5 The cost of a banquet he determined on each occasion, all with the utmost care, and he reduced the sums that might be expended to the amounts prescribed by  p69 the ancient laws.​180 6 He forbade the entry into Rome of heavily laden waggons, and did not permit riding on horseback in cities. 7 None but invalids were allowed to bathe in the public baths before the eighth hour of the day. 8 He was the first to put knights in charge of the imperial correspondence and of the petitions addressed to the emperor.​181 9 Those men whom he saw to be poor and innocent he enriched of his own accord, but those who had become rich through sharp practice he actually regarded with hatred. He despised foreign cults, 10 but native Roman ones he observed most scrupulously; moreover, he always performed the duties of pontifex maximus. 11 He tried a great number of lawsuits himself both in Rome and in the provinces, and to his council​182 he called consuls and praetors and the foremost of the senators. 12 He drained the Fucine Lake.​183 13 He appointed four men of consular rank as judges for all Italy. 14 When he went to Africa​184 it rained on his arrival for the first time in the space of five years, and for this he was beloved by the Africans.

23 1   [Legamen ad paginam Latinam] After traversing, as he did, all parts of the world with bare head and often in severe storms and  p71 frosts, he contracted an illness which confined him to his bed. 2 And becoming anxious about a successor he thought first of Servianus. 3 Afterwards, however, as I have said,​185 he forced him to commit suicide; and Fuscus,​186 too, he put to death on the ground that, being spurred on by prophecies and omens, he was hoping for the imperial power. 4 Carried away by suspicion, he held in the greatest abhorrence Platorius Nepos,​187 whom he had formerly so loved that, once, when he went to see him while ill and was refused admission, he nevertheless let him go unpunished. 5 Also he hated Terentius Gentianus,​188 but even more vehemently, because he saw that he was then beloved by the senate. 6 At last, he came to hate all those of whom he had thought in connection with the imperial power, as though they were really about to be emperors. 7 However, he controlled all the force of his innate cruelty down to the time when in his Tiburtine Villa​189 he almost met his death through a hemorrhage. 8 Then he threw aside all restraint and compelled Servianus to kill himself, on the ground that he aspired to the empire, merely because he gave a feast to the royal slaves, sat in a royal chair placed close to his bed, and, though an old man of ninety, used to arise and go forward to meet the guard of soldiers.​190 He put many others to death, either openly or by treachery, 9 and indeed, when his wife Sabina died, the rumour arose that the Emperor had given her poison.

10 Hadrian then determined to adopt Ceionius Commodus, son-in‑law of Nigrinus, the former conspirator, and this in spite of the fact that his sole recommendation was his beauty. 11 Accordingly, despite the opposition of all, he adopted Ceionius Commodus  p73 Verus​191 and called him Aelius Verus Caesar. 12 On the occasion of the adoption he gave games in the Circus and bestowed largess upon the populace and the soldiers.​192 13 He dignified Commodus with the office of praetor​193 and immediately placed him in command of the Pannonian provinces, and also conferred on him the consul­ship together with money enough to meet the expenses of the office. He also appointed Commodus to a second consul­ship. 14 And when he saw that the man was diseased, he used often to say: "We have leaned against a tottering wall and have wasted the four hundred million sesterces which we gave to the populace and the soldiers on the adoption of Commodus".​194 15 Moreover, because of his ill-health, Commodus could not even make a speech in the senate thanking Hadrian for his adoption. 16 Finally, too large a quantity of medicine was administered to him, and thereupon his illness increased, and he died in his sleep on the very Kalends of January.​195 Because of the date Hadrian forbade public mourning for him, in order that the vows for the state might be assumed as usual.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 24 1 After the death of Aelius Verus Caesar, Hadrian was attacked by a very severe illness, and thereupon he adopted Arrius Antoninus​196 (who was  p75 afterwards called Pius), imposing upon him the condition that he adopt two sons, Annius Verus​197 and Marcus Antoninus.​198 2 These were the two who afterwards ruled the empire together, the first joint Augusti. 3 And as for Antoninus, he was called Pius, it is said, because he used to give his arm to his father-in‑law when weakened by old age.​199 4 However, others assert that this surname was given to him because, as Hadrian grew more cruel, he rescued many senators from the Emperor;​200 5 others, again, that it was because he bestowed great honours upon Hadrian after his death.​201 6 The adoption of Antoninus was lamented by many at that time, particularly by Catilius Severus,​202 the prefect of the city, who was making plans to secure the throne for himself. 7 When this fact became known, a successor was appointed for him and he was deprived of his office.

8 But Hadrian was now seized with the utmost disgust of life and ordered a servant to stab him with a sword. 9 When this was disclosed and reached the ears of Antoninus, he came to the Emperor, together with the prefects, and begged him to endure with fortitude the hard necessity of illness, declaring furthermore that he himself would be no better than a parricide, were he, an adopted son, to permit Hadrian to be killed. 10 The Emperor then became angry and ordered the betrayer of the secret to be put to death; however, the man was saved by Antoninus. 11 Then Hadrian immediately drew up his will, though he did not lay aside the administration of the empire. 12 Once more, however, after making  p77 his will, he attempted to kill himself, but the dagger was taken from him. 13 He then became more violent, and he even demanded poison from his physician, who thereupon killed himself in order that he might not have to administer it.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 25 1 About this time there came a certain woman, who said that she had been warned in a dream to coax Hadrian to refrain from killing himself, for he was destined to recover entirely, but that she had failed to do this and had become blind; she had nevertheless been ordered a second time to give the same message to Hadrian and to kiss his knees, and was assured of the recovery of her sight if she did so. 2 The woman then carried out the command of the dream, and received her sight after she had bathed her eyes with the water in the temple from which she had come. 3 Also a blind old man from Pannonia came to Hadrian when he was ill with fever, and touched him; whereupon the man received his sight, and the fever left Hadrian. 4 All these things, however, Marius Maximus declares were done as a hoax.

5 After this Hadrian departed for Baiae, leaving Antoninus at Rome to carry on the government. 6 But he received no benefit there, and he thereupon sent for Antoninus, and in his presence he died there at Baiae on the sixth day before the Ides of July. 7 Hated by all, he was buried at Puteoli on an estate that had belonged to Cicero.

8 Just before his death, he compelled Servianus, then ninety years old, to kill himself, as has been said before,​203 in order that Servianus might not outlive him, and, as he thought, become emperor. He likewise gave orders that very many others who were guilty of slight offences should be put to death; these,  p79 however, were spared by Antoninus. 9 And he is said, as he lay dying, to have composed the following lines:

O blithe little soul, thou, flitting away,

Guest and comrade of this my clay,

Whither now goest thou, to what place

Bare and ghastly and without grace?

Nor, as thy wont was, joke and play."​204

10 Such verses as these did he compose, and not many that were better, and also some in Greek.

11 He lived 62 years, 5 months, 17 days. He ruled 20 years, 11 months.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 26 1 He was tall of stature and elegant in appearance; his hair was curled on a comb, and he wore a full beard to cover up the natural blemishes on his face; and he was very strongly built. 2 He rode and walked a great deal and always kept himself in training by the use of arms and the javelin. 3 He also hunted, and he used often to kill a lion with his own hand, but once in a hunt he broke his collar-bone and a rib; these hunts of his he always shared with his friends. 4 At his banquets he always furnished, according to the occasion, tragedies, comedies, Atellan farces,​205 players on the sambuca,​a readers, or poets. 5 His villa at Tibur​206 was marvellously constructed, and he actually gave to parts of it the names of provinces and places of the greatest renown, calling them, for instance, Lyceum, Academia, Prytaneum, Canopus, Poecile and Tempe. And in order not to omit anything, he even made a Hades.

6 The premonitions of his death were as follows: On  p81 his last birthday, when he was commending Antoninus to the gods, his bordered toga fell down without apparent cause and bared his head.​207 7 His ring, on which his portrait was carved, slipped of its own accord from his finger.​208 8 On the day before his birthday some one came into the senate wailing; by his presence Hadrian was as disturbed as if he were speaking about his own death, for no one could understand what he was saying. 9 Again, in the senate, when he meant to say, "after my son's death," he said, "after mine". 10 Besides, he dreamed that he had asked his father for a soporific; he also dreamed that he had been overcome by a lion.

[Legamen ad paginam Latinam] 27 1 Much was said against him after his death, and by many persons. 2 The senate wished to annul his acts, and would have refrained from naming him "the Deified" had not Antoninus requested it. 3 Antoninus, moreover, finally built a temple for him at Puteoli to take the place of a tomb, and he also established a quinquennial contest and flamens and sodales209 and many other institutions which appertain to the honour of one regarded as a god. 4 It is for this reason, as has been said before, that many think that Antoninus received the surname Pius.210

The Editor's Notes:

126 But see c. viii.7, and ix.4.

127 See c. iv.2, and xxiii.4.

128 Probably C. Publicius Marcellus, governor of Syria about 132.

129 Apparently the philosopher mentioned in c. xvi.10, and (p47)probably to be identified with Avidius Heliodorus, the father of Avidius Cassius; see Av. Cass. i.1.

130 Probably either T. Atilius Rufus Titianus, consul in 127, or Atilius Titianus, who was accused affectati imperii under Pius and condemned; see Pius vii.3.

131 Mentioned as a iuvenis egregiae indolis by Pliny the younger (Epist. vi.11; vii.24). He was consul with Hadrian in 118.

132 A well-known rhetorician, a native of Arelate (Arles) in Gaul. He was a friend of Plutarch and of Aulus Gellius, whose Noctes Atticae are full of allusions to him.

133 On the autobiography see note to c. i.1. The ruse described in this passage was not successful, for the true author­ship of the autobiography was known to the writer of the present biography (see c.i.1; iii.3 and 5; vii.2), and also to Cassius Dio (LXIX.11.2).

134 Antimachus of Colophon about 400 B.C.; the author of (p49)an epic, the Thebais, and of an elegiac poem, on the death of his wife Lyde. In general, his style was considered obscure, and his poems were full of learned allusions. According to Dio, LXIX.4, Hadrian preferred him to Homer. Nothing is known of the Catachannae.

135 Probably the poet Annius Florus, some of whose verses preserved in the Codex Salmasianus, a collection of miscellaneous poetical selections; see Riese, Anthologia Latina, I. Nos. 87 and 245‑252.

136 L. Caelius Antipater, an historian living in the second century B.C., who wrote a history of the Second Punic War.

137 According to Ael. iii.9, this statement is made on the authority of Marius Maximus.

138 The well-known Stoic philosopher.

139 The name Sigillaria was given to the last days of the Saturnalia, in which it was customary to send as gifts little figures (sigilla) of pottery or pastry.

Thayer's Note: For some further details and sources, see the article Saturnalia in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

140 Especially in connection with his conference with the minor potentates of the Orient; see c. xiii.8.

141 Pharasmanes; see also c. xiii.9 and note.

142 See c. viii.9 and note.

143 His Digesta in thirty-nine books were used in the compilation of the Digest of Justinian.

144 Famous as the compiler of the Edictum Perpetuum, a systematized collection of praetors' edicta, or statements of (p55)the principles to be used in administering justice; see Eutrop. VIII.17, and Codex Iust. VI.61.5. His Digesta in ninety books are cited in Justinian's Digest. See also Sev. xvii.5.

145 See note to c. iv.8.

146 This prohibition is an application of the general principle laid down in a senatus consultum of 44 (Bruns6, No. 51), that no building in Italy shall be demolished with a view to making profit out of the demolition. The destruction of buildings for any purpose except their immediate reconstruction, unless permission has been given by the curia, is prohibited in the various laws of the coloniae and municipia; see Lex Col. Genetivae, c. 75, Lex. Mun. Malac., c. 62, and Lex Mun. Tarent., c. 4.

147 It was a principle of Roman law that the property of those executed or exiled should be confiscated; see Digest. XLVIII.20.1 pr. It had become customary, however, to allow to the children a certain proportion. In the first century this often amounted to a half (see Tac., Ann.III.17; XIII.43); in the time of Theodosius I, the law established this amount, except only in cases of treason, in which the children were to receive one sixth; see Cod. Theod. IX.42.8 and 24 Cod. Iust. IX.49.8 and 10. The amount prescribed by Hadrian must be regarded as a minimum.

148 Originally the principle seems to have been that the finder of treasure became the owner; so Hor., Sat. II.6, 10 f. (p57)Hadrian's modification was adopted by Marcus and Verus (Just., Digest. XLIX.14.3.10), and by Severus Alexander (Alex. xlvi.2), and was finally incorporated in Justinian's Institutes (II.1.39).

149senatus consultum Silanianum of A.D. 10 had ordained that on the murder of a slave-owner by a slave, all the slaves present in the house should be examined by torture; see Just., Digest. XXIX.5. This was extended by a senatus consultum of 57 to include all freedmen present in the house; see Tac. Ann. XIII.32. For an instance of such a murder see Tac. Ann. XIV.42‑45.

150 He held the honorary post of chief magistrate of various towns. Praetor was the original title of this magistrate (the Roman consuls also were originally called praetores), and many towns retained the old name.

151 The Duoviri iuri dicundo were the chief magistrates of a colony, analogous to the consuls at Rome, and gradually most of the municipalities adopted this form of government. It was customary for the emperors to hold this magistracy as a compliment to the town.

Thayer's Note: For further details and sources, see this section of the article Colonia in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

152 Naples, which was a Greek city, retained the original title of its chief magistrate, δήμαρχος; see Strabo, V. p546 and many inscriptions extending down to the fourth century.

153 Italica in Hispania Baetica; see c. i.1.

154 In 112, before he became emperor; see the inscription from Athens, CIL III.550 = Dessau, Ins. Sel. 308.

155 See c. ix.9 and note.

156 Originally a war-dance, but sometimes used in pantomimes (cf. Suet. Nero, xii.2).

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, including musical notions and a woodcut reproducing the painting on an ancient vase, see the article Saltatio in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

157 See note to c. vii.6.

158 Originally built by Agrippa in 27 B.C. The present building bears the inscription of Agrippa, M. Agrippa L. f. consul ter(tium) fecit, but an examination of the bricks used in its (p59)construction has revealed the fact that it is wholly the work of Hadrian.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, including photographs, see the article Pantheon in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome, following also all the links.

159 In the Campus Martius, where the centuries gathered for voting. The building was begun by Julius Caesar but finished by Agrippa and called Saepta Iulia in 27 B.C. (Dio, LIII.23). It was burned under Titus (Dio, LXVI.24) but rebuilt under Domitian.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Diribitorium in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome.

160 North of the Saepta. Built by Agrippa in 25 B.C. to commemorate the victories over Sextus Pompeius and Antony (Dio, LIII.27) and burned under Titus. The north wall of Hadrian's building and eleven columns are extant, and form part of the façade of the modern stock-exchange.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Basilica Neptuni in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome.

161 North-west of the Forum Romanum, and containing the temple of Mars Ultor.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Forum Augustum in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome.

162 Immediately south of the Pantheon, built by Agrippa in 25 B.C. (Dio, LIII.27). These baths were burned under Titus but rebuilt under Domitian (Martial, III.20 and 36).

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Thermae Agrippae in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome.

163 The Mausoleum Hadriani, on the right bank of the Tiber, now the Castel S. Angelo. The bridge named after him Pons Aelius led to it. The Mausoleum was finally completed by Antoninus Pius in 139; see Pius viii.2, and CIL VI.984 = Dessau, Ins. Sel. 322.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, including photographs, see the articles Pons Aelius and Mausoleum Hadriani in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome, following also any links in the footer bar.

164 The Aedes Bonae Deae Subsaxanae was on the slope of the eastern peak of the Aventine Hill (the Remuria or Saxum); for its legend see Ovid, Fast.V.155.

165 A colossal statue of Nero which stood in the vestibule of Nero's Golden House; see Suet. Nero, xxxi.1. According to Suetonius it was 120 feet high, according to Pliny (N. H. XXXIV.45) 106½ feet. The statue was moved by Hadrian to a place immediately north-west of the Colosseum, where a portion of its base is still preserved.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Colossus Neronis in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome.

166 The Temple of Venus and Rome, built by Hadrian in 135 from a plan made by himself; see Dio, LXIX.4. It stood on the Velia at the highest point of the Sacra Via on a part of the site of Nero's Golden House. The western portion is built into the church of S. Francesca Romana, the eastern portion is partly extant.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, including photographs, see the article Templum Veneris et Romae in Platner and Ashby's Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome, following also all the links.

167 An academy founded by Ptolemy Philadelphus in imitation of the schools of Plato and Aristotle at Athens.

168 Domitian was assassinated by some palace-attendants.

169 This portion of the city lay east of the Acropolis, between the old wall of Themistocles and the Ilissus. A gate in the old wall was replaced by a new one, bearing on its two sides respectively the lines:—

Αἴδ’ εἰσ’ Ἀθῆναι Θησέως ἡ πρὶν πόλις.
Αἴδ’ εἰσ’ Ἁδριανοῦ καὶ οὐχὶ Θησέως πόλις.

(I.G. III.401)

170 The advocatus fisci represented the interests of the privy-purse in law-suits in which it became involved. The office was held by knights and constituted the first step in the equestrian cursus honorum.

171 Especially for his favourite hunting-horse Borysthenes, which died at Apte in Gallia Narbonensis; in its honour he erected a tomb with a stele and an inscription; see Dio, LXIX.10. The inscription is preserved, CIL XII.1122 = Bücheler, Carm. Epigr. II.1522.

172 In Bithynia.

173 Also called pentapharmacum; see Ael. v.4 f. It was also a favourite dish of Severus Alexander's; see Alex. xxx.6.

174 The ius Latii was a peculiar status, granted originally to certain of the cities of Latium. It conferred on their inhabitants certain private rights of a Roman citizen, especially those of holding property and trading at Rome and of intermarriage with Romans. In the time of the Empire the (p66)possession of this status meant chiefly local autonomy and the bestowal of Roman citizen­ship on local magistrates.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Latinitas in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

175 Except the war in Judaea; see c. xiv.2 and note.

176 See c. x.

177 i.e. Parthamaspates; see c. v.4 and note.

178 i.e. he relinquished their country together with the other conquests of Trajan east of the Euphrates; see c. v.1 and 3 and notes.

179 The eastern part of Trans-Caucasia, east of the Hiberi (for whom see c. xvii.11).

180 Beginning with the Lex Orchia of 181 B.C. the Roman republic tried by a succession of sumptuary laws to restrict the constantly increasing cost of banquets. The Lex Fannia of 161 B.C. fixed a maximum of 100 asses for the great holidays, of 10 asses for ordinary days; the latter sum was later increased to 30 asses. The Lex Cornelia of Sulla allowed three hundred sesterces for holidays and thirty for other days; this latter was increased by a law of Augustus to two hundred sesterces; see Gellius, II.24 and Macrobius, Sat. III.17. Which sum is meant here is unfortunately not clear.

Thayer's Note: For comprehensive details and sources, see the article Sumtuariae Leges in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

181 One of the most important of Hadrian's reforms. The great court-offices had previously been held chiefly by freedmen of the emperor as private posts in his household. Hadrian, in providing that they should be held by knights, transformed them into official government positions. Moreover, this opening to the equestrian order of a career of great influence and distinction led to the result that by the end of the third century most of the important administrative posts were held by knights.

182 See c. viii.9 and note.

183 Now Lago di Celano. It is in the centre of Italy, due east of Rome. An attempt to drain it by means of a tunnel was made by Claudius (see Tac., Ann. XII.56 and 57),º but not very successfully. Another attempt, made by Trajan, is recorded in an inscription (CIL IX.3915).

Thayer's Note: The fact that the lake had an Italian name indicates that Hadrian's attempt was not successful either. The lake was finally drained in 1875.

184 See c. xiii.4.

185 See c. xv.8.

186 Pedanius Fuscus, the grandson of Servianus, was killed at the age of eighteen; see Dio, LXIX.17.

187 See c. iv.2 and note.

188 D. Terentius Gentianus held an important command in Trajan's wars in Dacia and became a patron of the colony of Sarmizegetusa, the capital of the province; see CIL III.1463.

189 See c. xxvi.5.

190 i.e. the guard that was regularly on duty at the Palace; see Suetonius, Tib. xxiv.1; Nero, xxi.1.

191 More correctly, L. Ceionius Commodus; he was adopted under the name L. Aelius Caesar. The cognomen Verus, given to him here and in his biography (Ael. ii.1 and 6), is not attested by inscriptions or coins, and seems to have arisen through a confusion with his son, adopted by Antoninus Pius, and, after his accession to the throne, called L. Aurelius Verus. The form Helius which is used throughout the Historia (p73)Augusta has no warrant whatsoever; its substitution for Aelius is probably due to some editor.

192 Cf. Ael. iii.3; vi.1.

193 This statement, as found here and in Ael. iii.2, is incorrect, for he was praetor in 130 and consul in 136, the year in which he was adopted. He was consul for the second time in 137 and was then placed in command of the two provinces of Pannonia.

194 Cf. Ael. vi.3.

195 Cf. Ael. iv.7.

196 More correctly, T. Aurelius Fulvus Boionius Arrius Antoninus; see Pius i.1. After his adoption his name was T. Aelius Caesar Antoninus.

197 The names of the two adopted sons of Antoninus Pius are entirely confused. The biographer is referring here to L. Ceionius Commodus, the son of L. Aelius Caesar, called, after his adoption by Antoninus, L. Aelius Aurelius Commodus. On his succession to the throne, he took the cognomen of his adoptive brother Annius Verus (M. Aurelius Antoninus) and reigned as L. Aurelius Verus.

198 His name before adoption was M. Annius Verus; after adoption he seems to have been called M. Aelius Aurelius Verus. On the death of Antoninus Pius he called himself M. Aurelius Antoninus.

199 So also Pius ii.3.

200 See c. xxv.8 and Pius ii.4.

201 See c. xxvii.4 and Pius ii.5.

202 He had been the colleague of Antoninus in the consul­ship in 120; see Pius ii.9.

203 See c. xv.8 and xxiii.2 and 8.

204 Translated by A. O'Brien-Moore.

205 The name was derived from Atella, a Campanian town, where, it was supposed, farces of this type originated.

206 This palace was built by Hadrian during the last years of his reign; it was a characteristic expression of both his (p79)eccentricity and his magnificence. Its extensive remains, covering, together with its gardens, about 160 acres, are still to be seen on the edge of the plain about three miles south-east of Tibur (Tivoli).

207 He was praying, according to the regular Roman custom, with a part of his toga drawn over his head.

208 For the significance of this omen see note to c. iii.7.

209 The Sodales were a board of priests to whom was committed the cult of a deified emperor. Under the empire there were, in all, four such boards: the Sodales Augustales, created for the cult of Augustus, and after the deification of Claudius (p81)extended to Sodales Augustales Claudiales; the Sodales Flaviales for Vespasian, after the deification of Titus extended to Sodales Flaviales Titiales; the Sodales Hadrianales; and the Sodales Antoniniani created in 161. The theory was that one sodalitas should care for the cults of the emperors of the same house.

Thayer's Note: For further details and sources, see the articles Augustales and Titi Sodales in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

210 See c. xxiv.5 and note.

Thayer's Note:

a For this stringed instrument, see the article in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities.

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