[1: M. de Montesquieu (Considerations sur la Grandeur et La Decadence des Romains, c. 17) supposes, on the authority of Orosius and Eusebius, that, on this occasion, the empire, for the first time, was really divided into two parts. It is difficult, however, to discover in what respect the plan of Galerius differed from that of Diocletian.]


[2: Hic non modo amabilis, sed etiam venerabilis Gallis fuit; praecipuc quod Diocletiani suspectam prudentiam, et Maximiani sanguinariam violentiam imperio ejus evaserant. Eutrop. Breviar. x. i.]


[3: Divitiis Provincialium (mel. provinciarum) ac privatorum studens, fisci commoda non admodum affectans; ducensque melius publicas opes a privatis haberi, quam intra unum claustrum reservari. Id. ibid. He carried this maxim so far, that whenever he gave an entertainment, he was obliged to borrow a service of plate.]


[4: Lactantius de Mort. Persecutor. c. 18. Were the particulars of this conference more consistent with truth and decency, we might still ask how they came to the knowledge of an obscure rhetorician. But there are many historians who put us in mind of the admirable saying of the great Conde to Cardinal de Retz: "Ces coquins nous font parlor et agir, comme ils auroient fait eux-memes a notre place."

   Note: This attack upon Lactantius is unfounded. Lactantius was so far from having been an obscure rhetorician, that he had taught rhetoric publicly, and with the greatest success, first in Africa, and afterwards in Nicomedia. His reputation obtained him the esteem of Constantine, who invited him to his court, and intrusted to him the education of his son Crispus. The facts which he relates took place during his own time; he cannot be accused of dishonesty or imposture. Satis me vixisse arbitrabor et officium hominis implesse si labor meus aliquos homines, ab erroribus iberatos, ad iter coeleste direxerit. De Opif. Dei, cap. 20. The eloquence of Lactantius has caused him to be called the Christian Cicero. Annon Gent. - G.

   Yet no unprejudiced person can read this coarse and particular private conversation of the two emperors, without assenting to the justice of Gibbon's severe sentence. But the authorship of the treatise is by no means certain. The fame of Lactantius for eloquence as well as for truth, would suffer no loss if it should be adjudged to some more "obscure rhetorician." Manso, in his Leben Constantins des Grossen, concurs on this point with Gibbon Beylage, iv. - M.]


[5: Sublatus nuper a pecoribus et silvis (says Lactantius de M. P. c. 19) statim Scutarius, continuo Protector, mox Tribunus, postridie Caesar, accepit Orientem. Aurelius Victor is too liberal in giving him the whole portion of Diocletian.]


[6: His diligence and fidelity are acknowledged even by Lactantius, de M. P. c. 18.]


[7: These schemes, however, rest only on the very doubtful authority of Lactantius de M. P. c. 20.]


[8: This tradition, unknown to the contemporaries of Constantine was invented in the darkness of monestaries, was embellished by Jeffrey of Monmouth, and the writers of the xiith century, has been defended by our antiquarians of the last age, and is seriously related in the ponderous History of England, compiled by Mr. Carte, (vol. i. p. 147.) He transports, however, the kingdom of Coil, the imaginary father of Helena, from Essex to the wall of Antoninus.]


[9: Eutropius (x. 2) expresses, in a few words, the real truth, and the occasion of the error "ex obscuriori matrimonio ejus filius." Zosimus (l. ii. p. 78) eagerly seized the most unfavorable report, and is followed by Orosius, (vii. 25,) whose authority is oddly enough overlooked by the indefatigable, but partial Tillemont. By insisting on the divorce of Helena, Diocletian acknowledged her marriage.]


[10: There are three opinions with regard to the place of Constantine's birth. 1. Our English antiquarians were used to dwell with rapture on the words of his panegyrist, "Britannias illic oriendo nobiles fecisti." But this celebrated passage may be referred with as much propriety to the accession, as to the nativity of Constantine. 2. Some of the modern Greeks have ascribed the honor of his birth to Drepanum, a town on the Gulf of Nicomedia, (Cellarius, tom. ii. p. 174,) which Constantine dignified with the name of Helenopolis, and Justinian adorned with many splendid buildings, (Procop. de Edificiis, v. 2.) It is indeed probable enough, that Helena's father kept an inn at Drepanum, and that Constantius might lodge there when he returned from a Persian embassy, in the reign of Aurelian. But in the wandering life of a soldier, the place of his marriage, and the places where his children are born, have very little connection with each other. 3. The claim of Naissus is supported by the anonymous writer, published at the end of Ammianus, p. 710, and who in general copied very good materials; and it is confirmed by Julius Firmicus, (de Astrologia, l. i. c. 4,) who flourished under the reign of Constantine himself. Some objections have been raised against the integrity of the text, and the application of the passage of Firmicus but the former is established by the best Mss., and the latter is very ably defended by Lipsius de Magnitudine Romana, l. iv. c. 11, et Supplement.]


[11: Literis minus instructus. Anonym. ad Ammian. p. 710.]


[12: Galerius, or perhaps his own courage, exposed him to single combat with a Sarmatian, (Anonym. p. 710,) and with a monstrous lion. See Praxagoras apud Photium, p. 63. Praxagoras, an Athenian philosopher, had written a life of Constantine in two books, which are now lost. He was a contemporary.]


[13: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 78, 79. Lactantius de M. P. c. 24. The former tells a very foolish story, that Constantine caused all the post- horses which he had used to be hamstrung. Such a bloody execution, without preventing a pursuit, would have scattered suspicions, and might have stopped his journey.

   Note: Zosimus is not the only writer who tells this story. The younger Victor confirms it. Ad frustrandos insequentes, publica jumenta, quaqua iter ageret, interficiens. Aurelius Victor de Caesar says the same thing, G. as also the Anonymus Valesii. - M.

   Manso, (Leben Constantins,) p. 18, observes that the story has been exaggerated; he took this precaution during the first stage of his journey. - M.]


[14: Anonym. p. 710. Panegyr. Veter. vii. 4. But Zosimus, l. ii. p. 79, Eusebius de Vit. Constant. l. i. c. 21, and Lactantius de M. P. c. 24. suppose, with less accuracy, that he found his father on his death-bed.]


[15: Cunctis qui aderant, annitentibus, sed praecipue Croco (alii Eroco) [Erich?] Alamannorum Rege, auxilii gratia Constantium comitato, imperium capit. Victor Junior, c. 41. This is perhaps the first instance of a barbarian king, who assisted the Roman arms with an independent body of his own subjects. The practice grew familiar and at last became fatal.]


[16: His panegyrist Eumenius (vii. 8) ventures to affirm in the presence of Constantine, that he put spurs to his horse, and tried, but in vain, to escape from the hands of his soldiers.]


[17: Lactantius de M. P. c. 25. Eumenius (vii. 8.) gives a rhetorical turn to the whole transaction.]


[18: The choice of Constantine, by his dying father, which is warranted by reason, and insinuated by Eumenius, seems to be confirmed by the most unexceptionable authority, the concurring evidence of Lactantius (de M. P. c. 24) and of Libanius, (Oratio i.,) of Eusebius (in Vit. Constantin. l. i. c. 18, 21) and of Julian, (Oratio i)]


[19: Of the three sisters of Constantine, Constantia married the emperor Licinius, Anastasia the Caesar Bassianus, and Eutropia the consul Nepotianus. The three brothers were, Dalmatius, Julius Constantius, and Annibalianus, of whom we shall have occasion to speak hereafter.]


[20: See Gruter. Inscrip. p. 178. The six princes are all mentioned, Diocletian and Maximian as the senior Augusti, and fathers of the emperors. They jointly dedicate, for the use of their own Romans, this magnificent edifice. The architects have delineated the ruins of these Thermoe, and the antiquarians, particularly Donatus and Nardini, have ascertained the ground which they covered. One of the great rooms is now the Carthusian church; and even one of the porter's lodges is sufficient to form another church, which belongs to the Feuillans.]


[21: See Lactantius de M. P. c. 26, 31. ]


[A: Saviguy, in his memoir on Roman taxation, (Mem. Berl. Academ. 1822, 1823, p. 5,) dates from this period the abolition of the Jus Italicum. He quotes a remarkable passage of Aurelius Victor. Hinc denique parti Italiae invec tum tributorum ingens malum. Aur. Vict. c. 39. It was a necessary consequence of the division of the empire: it became impossible to maintain a second court and executive, and leave so large and fruitful a part of the territory exempt from contribution. - M.]


[22: The sixth Panegyric represents the conduct of Maximian in the most favorable light, and the ambiguous expression of Aurelius Victor, "retractante diu," may signify either that he contrived, or that he opposed, the conspiracy. See Zosimus, l. ii. p. 79, and Lactantius de M. P. c. 26.]


[23: The circumstances of this war, and the death of Severus, are very doubtfully and variously told in our ancient fragments, (see Tillemont, Hist. des Empereurs, tom. iv. part i. p. 555.) I have endeavored to extract from them a consistent and probable narration.

   Note: Manso justly observes that two totally different narratives might be formed, almost upon equal authority. Beylage, iv. - M.]


[24: The sixth Panegyric was pronounced to celebrate the elevation of Constantine; but the prudent orator avoids the mention either of Galerius or of Maxentius. He introduces only one slight allusion to the actual troubles, and to the majesty of Rome.

   Note: Compare Manso, Beylage, iv. p. 302. Gibbon's account is at least as probable as that of his critic. - M.]


[25: With regard to this negotiation, see the fragments of an anonymous historian, published by Valesius at the end of his edition of Ammianus Marcellinus, p. 711. These fragments have furnished with several curious, and, as it should seem, authentic anecdotes.]


[26: Lactantius de M. P. c. 28. The former of these reasons is probably taken from Virgil's Shepherd: "Illam * * * ego huic notra similem, Meliboee, putavi," &c. Lactantius delights in these poetical illusions.]


[27: Castra super Tusci si ponere Tybridis undas; (jubeus) Hesperios audax veniam metator in agros. Tu quoscunque voles in planum effundere muros,

   His aries actus disperget saxa lacertis; Illa licet penitus tolli quam jusseris urbem

   Roma sit. Lucan. Pharsal. i. 381.]


[28: Lactantius de M. P. c. 27. Zosim. l. ii. p. 82. The latter, that Constantine, in his interview with Maximian, had promised to declare war against Galerius.]


[29: M. de Tillemont (Hist. des Empereurs, tom. iv. part i. p. 559) has proved that Licinius, without passing through the intermediate rank of Caesar, was declared Augustus, the 11th of November, A. D. 307, after the return of Galerius from Italy.]


[30: Lactantius de M. P. c. 32. When Galerius declared Licinius Augustus with himself, he tried to satisfy his younger associates, by inventing for Constantine and Maximin (not Maxentius; see Baluze, p. 81) the new title of sons of the Augusti. But when Maximin acquainted him that he had been saluted Augustus by the army, Galerius was obliged to acknowledge him as well as Constantine, as equal associates in the Imperial dignity.]


[31: See Panegyr. Vet. vi. 9. Audi doloris nostri liberam vocem, &c. The whole passage is imagined with artful flattery, and expressed with an easy flow of eloquence.]


[32: Lactantius de M. P. c. 28. Zosim. l. ii. p. 82. A report was spread, that Maxentius was the son of some obscure Syrian, and had been substituted by the wife of Maximian as her own child. See Aurelius Victor, Anonym. Valesian, and Panegyr. Vet. ix. 3, 4.]


[33: Ab urbe pulsum, ab Italia fugatum, ab Illyrico repudiatum, provinciis, tuis copiis, tuo palatio recepisti. Eumen. in Panegyr Vet. vii. 14.]


[34: Lactantius de M. P. c. 29. Yet, after the resignation of the purple, Constantine still continued to Maximian the pomp and honors of the Imperial dignity; and on all public occasions gave the right hand place to his father-in-law. Panegyr. Vet. viii. 15.]


[35: Zosim. l. ii. p. 82. Eumenius in Panegyr. Vet. vii. 16 - 21. The latter of these has undoubtedly represented the whole affair in the most favorable light for his sovereign. Yet even from this partial narrative we may conclude, that the repeated clemency of Constantine, and the reiterated treasons of Maximian, as they are described by Lactantius, (de M. P. c. 29, 30,) and copied by the moderns, are destitute of any historical foundation.

   Note: Yet some pagan authors relate and confirm them. Aurelius Victor speaking of Maximin, says, cumque specie officii, dolis compositis, Constantinum generum tentaret acerbe, jure tamen interierat. Aur. Vict. de Caesar l. p. 623. Eutropius also says, inde ad Gallias profectus est (Maximianus) composito tamquam a filio esset expulsus, ut Constantino genero jun geretur: moliens tamen Constantinum, reperta occasione, interficere, dedit justissimo exitu. Eutrop. x. p. 661. (Anon. Gent.) - G.

   These writers hardly confirm more than Gibbon admits; he denies the repeated clemency of Constantine, and the reiterated treasons of Maximian Compare Manso, p. 302. - M.]


[36: Aurelius Victor, c. 40. But that lake was situated on the upper Pannonia, near the borders of Noricum; and the province of Valeria (a name which the wife of Galerius gave to the drained country) undoubtedly lay between the Drave and the Danube, (Sextus Rufus, c. 9.) I should therefore suspect that Victor has confounded the Lake Pelso with the Volocean marshes, or, as they are now called, the Lake Sabaton. It is placed in the heart of Valeria, and its present extent is not less than twelve Hungarian miles (about seventy English) in length, and two in breadth. See Severini Pannonia, l. i. c. 9.]


[37: Lactantius (de M. P. c. 33) and Eusebius (l. viii. c. 16) describe the symptoms and progress of his disorder with singular accuracy and apparent pleasure.]


[38: If any (like the late Dr. Jortin, Remarks on Ecclesiastical History, vol. ii. p. 307 - 356) still delight in recording the wonderful deaths of the persecutors, I would recommend to their perusal an admirable passage of Grotius (Hist. l. vii. p. 332) concerning the last illness of Philip II. of Spain.]


[39: See Eusebius, l. ix. 6, 10. Lactantius de M. P. c. 36. Zosimus is less exact, and evidently confounds Maximian with Maximin.]


[40: See the viiith Panegyr., in which Eumenius displays, in the presence of Constantine, the misery and the gratitude of the city of Autun.]


[41: Eutropius, x. 3. Panegyr. Veter. vii. 10, 11, 12. A great number of the French youth were likewise exposed to the same cruel and ignominious death.]


[B: Yet the panegyric assumes something of an apologetic tone. Te vero Constantine, quantumlibet oderint hoses, dum perhorrescant. Haec est enim vera virtus, ut non ament et quiescant. The orator appeals to the ancient ideal of the republic. - M.]


[42: Julian excludes Maxentius from the banquet of the Caesars with abhorrence and contempt; and Zosimus (l. ii. p. 85) accuses him of every kind of cruelty and profligacy.]


[43: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 83 - 85. Aurelius Victor.]


[44: The passage of Aurelius Victor should be read in the following manner: Primus instituto pessimo, munerum specie, Patres Oratores que pecuniam conferre prodigenti sibi cogeret.]


[45: Panegyr. Vet. ix. 3. Euseb. Hist Eccles. viii. 14, et in Vit. Constant i. 33, 34. Rufinus, c. 17. The virtuous matron who stabbed herself to escape the violence of Maxentius, was a Christian, wife to the praefect of the city, and her name was Sophronia. It still remains a question among the casuists, whether, on such occasions, suicide is justifiable.]


[46: Praetorianis caedem vulgi quondam annueret, is the vague expression of Aurelius Victor. See more particular, though somewhat different, accounts of a tumult and massacre which happened at Rome, in Eusebius, (l. viii. c. 14,) and in Zosimus, (l. ii. p. 84.)]


[47: See, in the Panegyrics, (ix. 14,) a lively description of the indolence and vain pride of Maxentius. In another place the orator observes that the riches which Rome had accumulated in a period of 1060 years, were lavished by the tyrant on his mercenary bands; redemptis ad civile latrocinium manibus in gesserat.]


[48: After the victory of Constantine, it was universally allowed, that the motive of delivering the republic from a detested tyrant, would, at any time, have justified his expedition into Italy. Euseb in Vi'. Constantin. l. i. c. 26. Panegyr. Vet. ix. 2.]


[49: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 84, 85. Nazarius in Panegyr. x. 7 - 13.]


[50: See Panegyr. Vet. ix. 2. Omnibus fere tuis Comitibus et Ducibus non solum tacite mussantibus, sed etiam aperte timentibus; contra consilia hominum, contra Haruspicum monita, ipse per temet liberandae arbis tempus venisse sentires. The embassy of the Romans is mentioned only by Zonaras, (l. xiii.,) and by Cedrenus, (in Compend. Hist. p. 370;) but those modern Greeks had the opportunity of consulting many writers which have since been lost, among which we may reckon the life of Constantine by Praxagoras. Photius (p. 63) has made a short extract from that historical work.]


[51: Zosimus (l. ii. p. 86) has given us this curious account of the forces on both sides. He makes no mention of any naval armaments, though we are assured (Panegyr. Vet. ix. 25) that the war was carried on by sea as well as by land; and that the fleet of Constantine took possession of Sardinia, Corsica, and the ports of Italy.]


[52: Panegyr. Vet. ix. 3. It is not surprising that the orator should diminish the numbers with which his sovereign achieved the conquest of Italy; but it appears somewhat singular that he should esteem the tyrant's army at no more than 100,000 men.]


[53: The three principal passages of the Alps between Gaul and Italy, are those of Mount St. Bernard, Mount Cenis, and Mount Genevre. Tradition, and a resemblance of names, (Alpes Penninoe,) had assigned the first of these for the march of Hannibal, (see Simler de Alpibus.) The Chevalier de Folard (Polyp. tom. iv.) and M. d'Anville have led him over Mount Genevre. But notwithstanding the authority of an experienced officer and a learned geographer, the pretensions of Mount Cenis are supported in a specious, not to say a convincing, manner, by M. Grosley. Observations sur l'Italie, tom. i. p. 40, &c.]


[C: The dissertation of Messrs. Cramer and Wickham has clearly shown that the Little St. Bernard must claim the honor of Hannibal's passage. Mr. Long (London, 1831) has added some sensible corrections re Hannibal's march to the Alps. - M]


[54: La Brunette near Suse, Demont, Exiles, Fenestrelles, Coni, &c.]


[55: See Ammian. Marcellin. xv. 10. His description of the roads over the Alps is clear, lively, and accurate.]


[56: Zosimus as well as Eusebius hasten from the passage of the Alps to the decisive action near Rome. We must apply to the two Panegyrics for the intermediate actions of Constantine.]


[57: The Marquis Maffei has examined the siege and battle of Verona with that degree of attention and accuracy which was due to a memorable action that happened in his native country. The fortifications of that city, constructed by Gallienus, were less extensive than the modern walls, and the amphitheatre was not included within their circumference. See Verona Illustrata, part i. p. 142 150.]


[58: They wanted chains for so great a multitude of captives; and the whole council was at a loss; but the sagacious conqueror imagined the happy expedient of converting into fetters the swords of the vanquished. Panegyr. Vet. ix. 11.]


[59: Panegyr. Vet. ix. 11.]


[60: Literas calamitatum suarum indices supprimebat. Panegyr Vet. ix. 15.]


[61: Remedia malorum potius quam mala differebat, is the fine censure which Tacitus passes on the supine indolence of Vitellius.]


[62: The Marquis Maffei has made it extremely probable that Constantine was still at Verona, the 1st of September, A.D. 312, and that the memorable aera of the indications was dated from his conquest of the Cisalpine Gaul.]


[63: See Panegyr. Vet. xi. 16. Lactantius de M. P. c. 44.]


[64: Illo die hostem Romanorum esse periturum. The vanquished became of course the enemy of Rome.]


[65: See Panegyr. Vet. ix. 16, x. 27. The former of these orators magnifies the hoards of corn, which Maxentius had collected from Africa and the Islands. And yet, if there is any truth in the scarcity mentioned by Eusebius, (in Vit. Constantin. l. i. c. 36,) the Imperial granaries must have been open only to the soldiers.]


[66: Maxentius . . . tandem urbe in Saxa Rubra, millia ferme novem aegerrime progressus. Aurelius Victor. See Cellarius Geograph. Antiq. tom. i. p. 463. Saxa Rubra was in the neighborhood of the Cremera, a trifling rivulet, illustrated by the valor and glorious death of the three hundred Fabii.]


[67: The post which Maxentius had taken, with the Tyber in his rear is very clearly described by the two Panegyrists, ix. 16, x. 28.]


[68: Exceptis latrocinii illius primis auctoribus, qui desperata venia ocum quem pugnae sumpserant texere corporibus. Panegyr. Vet 17.]


[69: A very idle rumor soon prevailed, that Maxentius, who had not taken any precaution for his own retreat, had contrived a very artful snare to destroy the army of the pursuers; but that the wooden bridge, which was to have been loosened on the approach of Constantine, unluckily broke down under the weight of the flying Italians. M. de Tillemont (Hist. des Empereurs, tom. iv. part i. p. 576) very seriously examines whether, in contradiction to common sense, the testimony of Eusebius and Zosimus ought to prevail over the silence of Lactantius, Nazarius, and the anonymous, but contemporary orator, who composed the ninth Panegyric.

   Note: Manso (Beylage, vi.) examines the question, and adduces two manifest allusions to the bridge, from the Life of Constantine by Praxagoras, and from Libanius. Is it not very probable that such a bridge was thrown over the river to facilitate the advance, and to secure the retreat, of the army of Maxentius? In case of defeat, orders were given for destroying it, in order to check the pursuit: it broke down accidentally, or in the confusion was destroyed, as has not unfrequently been the case, before the proper time. - M.]


[70: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 86-88, and the two Panegyrics, the former of which was pronounced a few months afterwards, afford the clearest notion of this great battle. Lactantius, Eusebius, and even the Epitomes, supply several useful hints.]


[71: Zosimus, the enemy of Constantine, allows (l. ii. p. 88) that only a few of the friends of Maxentius were put to death; but we may remark the expressive passage of Nazarius, (Panegyr. Vet. x. 6.) Omnibus qui labefactari statum ejus poterant cum stirpe deletis. The other orator (Panegyr. Vet. ix. 20, 21) contents himself with observing, that Constantine, when he entered Rome, did not imitate the cruel massacres of Cinna, of Marius, or of Sylla.

   Note: This may refer to the son or sons of Maxentius. - M.]


[72: See the two Panegyrics, and the laws of this and the ensuing year, in the Theodosian Code.]


[73: Panegyr. Vet. ix. 20. Lactantius de M. P. c. 44. Maximin, who was confessedly the eldest Caesar, claimed, with some show of reason, the first rank among the Augusti.]


[74: Adhuc cuncta opera quae magnifice construxerat, urbis fanum atque basilicam, Flavii meritis patres sacravere. Aurelius Victor. With regard to the theft of Trajan's trophies, consult Flaminius Vacca, apud Montfaucon, Diarium Italicum, p. 250, and l'Antiquite Expliquee of the latter, tom. iv. p. 171.]


[75: Praetoriae legiones ac subsidia factionibus aptiora quam urbi Romae, sublata penitus; simul arma atque usus indumenti militaris Aurelius Victor. Zosimus (l. ii. p. 89) mentions this fact as an historian, and it is very pompously celebrated in the ninth Panegyric.]


[76: Ex omnibus provinciis optimates viros Curiae tuae pigneraveris ut Senatus dignitas . . . . ex totius Orbis flore consisteret. Nazarius in Panegyr. Vet x. 35. The word pigneraveris might almost seem maliciously chosen. Concerning the senatorial tax, see Zosimus, l. ii. p. 115, the second title of the sixth book of the Theodosian Code, with Godefroy's Commentary, and Memoires de l'Academic des Inscriptions, tom. xxviii. p. 726.]


[77: From the Theodosian Code, we may now begin to trace the motions of the emperors; but the dates both of time and place have frequently been altered by the carelessness of transcribers.]


[78: Zosimus (l. ii. p. 89) observes, that before the war the sister of Constantine had been betrothed to Licinius. According to the younger Victor, Diocletian was invited to the nuptials; but having ventured to plead his age and infirmities, he received a second letter, filled with reproaches for his supposed partiality to the cause of Maxentius and Maximin.]


[79: Zosimus mentions the defeat and death of Maximin as ordinary events; but Lactantius expatiates on them, (de M. P. c. 45-50,) ascribing them to the miraculous interposition of Heaven. Licinius at that time was one of the protectors of the church.]


[80: Lactantius de M. P. c. 50. Aurelius Victor touches on the different conduct of Licinius, and of Constantine, in the use of victory.]


[81: The sensual appetites of Maximin were gratified at the expense of his subjects. His eunuchs, who forced away wives and virgins, examined their naked charms with anxious curiosity, lest any part of their body should be found unworthy of the royal embraces. Coyness and disdain were considered as treason, and the obstinate fair one was condemned to be drowned. A custom was gradually introduced, that no person should marry a wife without the permission of the emperor, "ut ipse in omnibus nuptiis praegustator esset." Lactantius de M. P. c. 38.]


[82: Lactantius de M. P. c. 39.]


[83: Diocletian at last sent cognatum suum, quendam militarem ae potentem virum, to intercede in favor of his daughter, (Lactantius de M. P. c. 41.) We are not sufficiently acquainted with the history of these times to point out the person who was employed.]


[84: Valeria quoque per varias provincias quindecim mensibus plebeio cultu pervagata. Lactantius de M. P. c. 51. There is some doubt whether we should compute the fifteen months from the moment of her exile, or from that of her escape. The expression of parvagata seems to denote the latter; but in that case we must suppose that the treatise of Lactantius was written after the first civil war between Licinius and Constantine. See Cuper, p. 254.]


[85: Ita illis pudicitia et conditio exitio fuit. Lactantius de M. P. c. 51. He relates the misfortunes of the innocent wife and daughter of Discletian with a very natural mixture of pity and exultation.]


[86: The curious reader, who consults the Valesian fragment, p. 713, will probably accuse me of giving a bold and licentious paraphrase; but if he considers it with attention, he will acknowledge that my interpretation is probable and consistent.]


[87: The situation of Aemona, or, as it is now called, Laybach, in Carniola, (D'Anville, Geographie Ancienne, tom. i. p. 187,) may suggest a conjecture. As it lay to the north-east of the Julian Alps, that important territory became a natural object of dispute between the sovereigns of Italy and of Illyricum.]


[88: Cibalis or Cibalae (whose name is still preserved in the obscure ruins of Swilei) was situated about fifty miles from Sirmium, the capital of Illyricum, and about one hundred from Taurunum, or Belgrade, and the conflux of the Danube and the Save. The Roman garrisons and cities on those rivers are finely illustrated by M. d'Anville in a memoir inserted in l'Academie des Inscriptions, tom. xxviii.]


[89: Zosimus (l. ii. p. 90, 91) gives a very particular account of this battle; but the descriptions of Zosimus are rhetorical rather than military]


[90: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 92, 93. Anonym. Valesian. p. 713. The Epitomes furnish some circumstances; but they frequently confound the two wars between Licinius and Constantine.]


[91: Petrus Patricius in Excerpt. Legat. p. 27. If it should be thought that signifies more properly a son-in-law, we might conjecture that Constantine, assuming the name as well as the duties of a father, had adopted his younger brothers and sisters, the children of Theodora. But in the best authors sometimes signifies a husband, sometimes a father-in-law, and sometimes a kinsman in general. See Spanheim, Observat. ad Julian. Orat. i. p. 72.]


[92: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 93. Anonym. Valesian. p. 713. Eutropius, x. v. Aurelius Victor, Euseb. in Chron. Sozomen, l. i. c. 2. Four of these writers affirm that the promotion of the Caesars was an article of the treaty. It is, however, certain, that the younger Constantine and Licinius were not yet born; and it is highly probable that the promotion was made the 1st of March, A. D. 317. The treaty had probably stipulated that the two Caesars might be created by the western, and one only by the eastern emperor; but each of them reserved to himself the choice of the persons.]


[D: This explanation appears to me little probable. Godefroy has made a much more happy conjecture, supported by all the historical circumstances which relate to this edict. It was published the 12th of May, A. D. 315. at Naissus in Pannonia, the birthplace of Constantine. The 8th of October, in that year, Constantine gained the victory of Cibalis over Licinius. He was yet uncertain as to the fate of the war: the Christians, no doubt, whom he favored, had prophesied his victory. Lactantius, then preceptor of Crispus, had just written his work upon Christianity, (his Divine Institutes;) he had dedicated it to Constantine. In this book he had inveighed with great force against infanticide, and the exposure of infants, (l. vi. c. 20.) Is it not probable that Constantine had read this work, that he had conversed on the subject with Lactantius, that he was moved, among other things, by the passage to which I have referred, and in the first transport of his enthusiasm, he published the edict in question? The whole of the edict bears the character of precipitation, of excitement, (entrainement,) rather than of deliberate reflection - the extent of the promises, the indefiniteness of the means, of the conditions, and of the time during which the parents might have a right to the succor of the state. Is there not reason to believe that the humanity of Constantine was excited by the influence of Lactantius, by that of the principles of Christianity, and of the Christians themselves, already in high esteem with the emperor, rather than by some "extraordinary instances of despair"? * * * See Hegewisch, Essai Hist. sur les Finances Romaines

   The edict for Africa was not published till 322: of that we may say in truth that its origin was in the misery of the times. Africa had suffered much from the cruelty of Maxentius. Constantine says expressly, that he had learned that parents, under the pressure of distress, were there selling their children. This decree is more distinct, more maturely deliberated than the former; the succor which was to be given to the parents, and the source from which it was to be derived, are determined. (Code Theod. l. xi. tit. 27, c 2.) If the direct utility of these laws may not have been very extensive, they had at least the great and happy effect of establishing a decisive opposition between the principles of the government and those which, at this time, had prevailed among the subjects of the empire. - G.]


[93: Codex Theodosian. l. xi. tit. 27, tom. iv. p. 188, with Godefroy's observations. See likewise l. v. tit. 7, 8.]


[94: Omnia foris placita, domi prospera, annonae ubertate, fructuum copia, &c. Panegyr. Vet. x. 38. This oration of Nazarius was pronounced on the day of the Quinquennalia of the Caesars, the 1st of March, A. D. 321.]


[95: See the edict of Constantine, addressed to the Roman people, in the Theodosian Code, l. ix. tit. 24, tom. iii. p. 189.]


[96: His son very fairly assigns the true reason of the repeal: "Na sub specie atrocioris judicii aliqua in ulciscendo crimine dilatio nae ceretur." Cod. Theod. tom. iii. p. 193]


[97: Eusebius (in Vita Constant. l. iii. c. 1) chooses to affirm, that in the reign of this hero, the sword of justice hung idle in the hands of the magistrates. Eusebius himself, (l. iv. c. 29, 54,) and the Theodosian Code, will inform us that this excessive lenity was not owing to the want either of atrocious criminals or of penal laws.]


[98: Nazarius in Panegyr. Vet. x. The victory of Crispus over the Alemanni is expressed on some medals.

   Note: Other medals are extant, the legends of which commemorate the success of Constantine over the Sarmatians and other barbarous nations, Sarmatia Devicta. Victoria Gothica. Debellatori Gentium Barbarorum. Exuperator Omnium Gentium. St. Martin, note on Le Beau, i. 148. - M.]

[E: Campona, Old Buda in Hungary; Margus, Benonia, Widdin, in Maesia - G and M.]


[99: See Zosimus, l. ii. p. 93, 94; though the narrative of that historian is neither clear nor consistent. The Panegyric of Optatianus (c. 23) mentions the alliance of the Sarmatians with the Carpi and Getae, and points out the several fields of battle. It is supposed that the Sarmatian games, celebrated in the month of November, derived their origin from the success of this war.]


[100: In the Caesars of Julian, (p. 329. Commentaire de Spanheim, p. 252.) Constantine boasts, that he had recovered the province (Dacia) which Trajan had subdued. But it is insinuated by Silenus, that the conquests of Constantine were like the gardens of Adonis, which fade and wither almost the moment they appear.]


[101: Jornandes de Rebus Geticis, c. 21. I know not whether we may entirely depend on his authority. Such an alliance has a very recent air, and scarcely is suited to the maxims of the beginning of the fourth century.]


[102: Eusebius in Vit. Constantin. l. i. c. 8. This passage, however, is taken from a general declamation on the greatness of Constantine, and not from any particular account of the Gothic war.]


[103: Constantinus tamen, vir ingens, et omnia efficere nitens quae animo praeparasset, simul principatum totius urbis affectans, Licinio bellum intulit. Eutropius, x. 5. Zosimus, l. ii. p 89. The reasons which they have assigned for the first civil war, may, with more propriety, be applied to the second.]


[104: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 94, 95.]


[105: Constantine was very attentive to the privileges and comforts of his fellow-veterans, (Conveterani,) as he now began to style them. See the Theodosian Code, l. vii. tit. 10, tom. ii. p. 419, 429.]


[106: Whilst the Athenians maintained the empire of the sea, their fleet consisted of three, and afterwards of four, hundred galleys of three ranks of oars, all completely equipped and ready for immediate service. The arsenal in the port of Piraeus had cost the republic a thousand talents, about two hundred and sixteen thousand pounds. See Thucydides de Bel. Pelopon. l. ii. c. 13, and Meursius de Fortuna Attica, c. 19.]


[107: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 95, 96. This great battle is described in the Valesian fragment, (p. 714,) in a clear though concise manner. "Licinius vero circum Hadrianopolin maximo exercitu latera ardui montis impleverat; illuc toto agmine Constantinus inflexit. Cum bellum terra marique traheretur, quamvis per arduum suis nitentibus, attamen disciplina militari et felicitate, Constantinus Licinu confusum et sine ordine agentem vicit exercitum; leviter femore sau ciatus."]


[108: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 97, 98. The current always sets out of the Hellespont; and when it is assisted by a north wind, no vessel can[Footnote Continuation: attempt the passage. A south wind renders the force of the current almost imperceptible. See Tournefort's Voyage au Levant, Let. xi.]


[109: Aurelius Victor. Zosimus, l. ii. p. 93. According to the latter, Martinianus was Magister Officiorum, (he uses the Latin appellation in Greek.) Some medals seem to intimate, that during his short reign he received the title of Augustus.]


[110: Eusebius (in Vita Constantin. I. ii. c. 16, 17) ascribes this decisive victory to the pious prayers of the emperor. The Valesian fragment (p. 714) mentions a body of Gothic auxiliaries, under their chief Aliquaca, who adhered to the party of Licinius.]


[111: Zosimus, l. ii. p. 102. Victor Junior in Epitome. Anonym. Valesian. p. 714.]


[112: Contra religionem sacramenti Thessalonicae privatus occisus est. Eutropius, x. 6; and his evidence is confirmed by Jerome (in Chronic.) as well as by Zosimus, l. ii. p. 102. The Valesian writer is the only one who mentions the soldiers, and it is Zonaras alone who calls in the assistance of the senate. Eusebius prudently slides over this delicate transaction. But Sozomen, a century afterwards, ventures to assert the treasonable practices of Licinius.]


[113: See the Theodosian Code, l. xv. tit. 15, tom. v. p 404, 405. These edicts of Constantine betray a degree of passion and precipitation very unbecoming the character of a lawgiver.]


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