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Ursicinus, commander of the infantry at the emperor's court, is assailed by calumnies and cashiered.

While this was going on, Ursicinus, after the storming of Amida, had returned to the emperor's service as commander of the infantry; for, as I have said, he succeeded Barbatio. 1 There he was met by detractors, who at first spread whispered slanders, then openly added false charges. [2] These the emperor, since he judged most matters according to his prejudices and was ready to listen to secret attackers, took seriously and appointed Arbitio and Florentius, 2 master of the offices, to investigate as judges the reasons for the destruction of Amida. [3] These [p. 7] men rejected the evident and plausible reasons, and fearing that Eusebius, then head chamberlain, would take offence if they admitted evidence which clearly showed that what had happened was the result of the persistent inaction of Sabinianus, they turned from the truth and examined into trivial matters far remote from the business in hand.

[4] The accused, exasperated at this injustice, said: “Although the emperor despises me, the importance of the present business is such, that it cannot be examined into and punished, except by the judgement of the prince; yet let him know, as if from the words of a seer, that so long as he grieves over what he has learned on no good authority to have happened at Amida, and so long as he is swayed by the will of eunuchs, not even he in person with all the flower of his army will be able next spring to prevent the dismemberment of Mesopotania.”

[5] When this had been reported and much had been added in a malicious light, Constantius was angered beyond measure; and without sifting the matter or allowing the details of which he was ignorant to be explained, he ordered the victim of the calumnies to give up his command in the army and go into retirement. And by an extraordinary advancement Agilo, a former tribune of the household troops and of the targeteers, 3 was promoted to his place.

1 See xviii. 5, 5.

2 Son of Nigrinianus; of. xv. 5, 12.

3 See xiv. 7, 9, note 3.

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