fectation of their followers, feem equally remote. Horace and Virgil, Tibullus and Propertius, flourished in the court of Auguftus. The two first, indeed, through the noble patronage and friendship of Mecenas, enjoyed the finiles of the Emperor, who was himself distinguifhed by the elegance of his compositions, and the purity of his tatte. The Lyric as well as the Epic mule were grateful for his protection and liberality; and Horace and Virgil, indulging the vanity of the Julian family, who claimed a divine origin, raised their patron to the rank' of a deity, and perpetuated his fame in their incomparable poems..

· Notwithstanding the external magnificence of Rome, and her prosperity during the reign of Auguftus and his immediate fucceffors, the manners of the people gradually underwent a great change; the state contained in her bofom the causes of her own decay, and the poison of dissolution preyed upon her vitals. She became as abject and degraded, as she had ever been great and powerful. The empress of the world funk into the most humiliating condition; and her downfal may be attrie buted, I. to the decay of patriotism; II. the introduction of luxury; III. the neglect of the ancient modes of education.

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h Iu a train of beautiful allegory Sir W. Raleghn thus alludes to the preceding and subsequent parts of this hi!tory. “We have left the empire of Rome, the last of the four great ino



as a

The indiscriininate adıniffion of all the subjets of the empire to the freedom of the city, although a conciliating, was a most impolitic measure. Instead of railing the natives of the provinces to the dignity of Roinans, this privilege produced the opposite effect, and funk the latter to a level with the former. It extinguished those high fentiments of patriotism, and that pride of comparison, upon wirich the old republicans had valued themselves, as it destroyed an exclufive intereft. in the prosperity of the einpire, and degraded the dignity of the Roman character. The right of citizenship was rendered of no value, by being fo widely diffused; and the enthusiasm, which had fired a Brutus, a Cocles, and a Manlius, to fight for the tombs of their fathers, and the altars of their gods was extinguished. The Roman people were no longer actuated by the same love of inde. pendence, or the same detestation of lervility. They looked no more with a jealous eye upon the power of the fenate, or the prerogatives of the patricians; and undistinguished in the crowds of new competitors for the fame privileges, they gradually funk into infignificance. The bond of union and sub

parchies of the world, Nourishing in the middle of the field, having rooted up, or cut down, all that kept it from the eyes and admiration of the world. But after fome continuance, it thall begin to lose the beauty it had; the storms of ambition thall beat her great boughs and branches one against another, her leaves Mall full off, lier limbs wither, and a rabble of barbarous nations enter the field, and cut her down." History of the World, p. 668.


ordination was broken, and the city was torn by innumerable factions of strangers, as soon as every province was allowed to form cabals and affociations, and to fhelter its inhabitants under the patronage of some great patrician.


. The profufion and extravagance of the rich were displayed in the celebration of the public games. The combats of gladiators, and the races of chasioteers, were exhibited to the diffolute crowds, who, indulging only the impulte of a childịch curiosity, spent whole days in the Circus. The fatirist Juvenal uses those ftrong expressions, which are characteristic of the manners of the times, when he says, that the Roman populace had no anxiety but for two objects-bread and the tight of the public games. The licentious productions of the stage, often represented with all the attractions of fplendid decorations and crowded proceffions, vitiated the general taste, inflamed the paffions of youth, and encouraged dislipation and immorality of conduct in persons of every class.

II. From the deftru&ion of Carthage may be traced the gradual progress of Luzury. Profufion and extravagance began to prevail as soon as the precious metals were introduced in abundance from the conquered provinces. Voluptuousness ufurped the place of temperance, indolence lucceeded to a&tivity; felf-interest, sensuality, and ayarice, totally extinguished that ardour, which in antient times had glowed in every breast for the




public good. The streams of wealth, that fowed into Rome at the decline of the commonwealth, were such as almost exceed beliefi. Yet the expences of their luxurious feasts, their spacious palaces, costly furniture, dress, and plate, and their pictures and statues, caused the opulent Romans sometimes to exceed their great revenues. No less than eighteen elegant villas, situated in the most delightful parts of Italy, were poffefsed by. Cicero; and, as if the land was not sufficient to gratify the caprice of a Roman of fashion, the Lucerine lakes and the shores of Baiæ were occupied by houses which extended into the water. Such was the complaint of Horace, when declaiming against the extrayagant fashion of his time; and the ruins of many of these buildings now extant confirm the propriety, or rather the necessity of his censures. Every nobleman in the reign of Tiberius had such numerous parties of flaves, that they were claffed according to their nations, and stationed in separate divisions of his palaces.. Seneca mentions single fuppers given with such profusion of costly fare, as to consume the whole estate of a Roman Knight. Apicius, the epicure, committed suicide, because his fortune, inadequate to the enorinous demands of his depraved appetitę, did not exceed the sum of eighty thousand pounds. Cookery was studied as a come

- fævior armis Luxuria incubuit, victumque ulcifcitur orbem.

: Juven. Sat. vi. See the excellent note of Brotier; de Luxu Romanorum. Tai citus, tom. i. p. 402. 4to. ed.


plete science; the number and expence of difhes at every great feast were incredible; and these extravagant banquets were enlivened by male and female dancers, musicians, and pantomimes. :

· The republic, which had long withstood the Thocks of external violence, fell gradually a prey to prosperity. Her gallant chiefs had viewed with undaunted eyes the approach of Hannibal, and defied the armies of Pyrrhus: but their degenerate descendants, even the posterity of Fabius and of Scipio, enriched with the fpoils of Greece, and furfeited with the luxuries of Asia, leaving their battles to be fought by barbarian mercenaries, funk fupine on beds of floth, and heard the trumpet of battle with dismay..

Such indeed was the change of manners, that the character of the people was altered in the space of a century, and a general depravity was visible in all orders of the itate. The Consuls, after having obtained their : rank by intrigues and bribery, undertook their campaigns either to enrich themielves with the spoils of conquered nations, or to plunder the provinces of the allies under the pretence of defending them. From such unjustifiable practices were derived the immense treasures of Craflus, Lucullus, and Cæsar. And as the means of corruption increased, fo likewise in equal proportion did the disposition to be corrupted. The populace, obsequious, indigent, and idle, were ready to follow any candidate, who was - Ff 4


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