This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
1 There has been much discussion respecting the meaning of this passage and the fact to which it refers. Aristotle, Hist. Anim., says, that marks made on the arm are transmitted for three generations; and Pliny, in B. xxii. c. 2, informs us, that the Daci and the Sarmatæ "make written marks upon their bodies." The same custom prevails among the lower orders, sailors especially, in our own times. We may also remark the analogy which it bears to the practice of tattooing, so general among the Polynesian and other barbarous nations.—B.
2 The reader may be amused by a perusal of the collection of wonderful cases of this kind, which has been made by Dalechamps; see Lemaire, vol. iii. p. 65, note 4.—B.
3 Aristotle, in his History of Animals, relates a similar, but not the same, story; he says that it occurred in Sicily, though he afterwards speaks of it as having happened in Elis. It is conjectured by Ajasson, that the individual might have been born in Sicily, and have exhibited himself in Elis, as a wrestler. If we are really to believe that his complexion was that of an Æthiopian, it is much more probable that his mother may have had connection with a negro.—B.
4 Few readers will fail here to recall to mind the story about the clock, in the opening chapter of "Tristram Shandy."
5 Dalechamps refers us to a remark of the same kind in Cicero, Tusc. Quæst. B. i. e. 80; but Ajasson remarks, that the resemblance mentioned by Cicero refers to the mind and manners, not to the body; Lemaire, vol. iii. p. 67.—B.
6 Aulus Gellius says, that he was one of the royal family.
7 This man resembled Antiochus III., surnamed the Great, to such a degree, that when that monarch had been slain in a tumult by his people, his wife, Laodice, daughter of Mithridates V., King of Pontus, put Artemon into a bed, pretending that he was the king, but dangerously ill. Many persons were admitted to see him; and all believed that they were listening to the words of their king, when he recommended to them Laodice and her children.
8 This circumstance is related by Valerius Maximus, but he speaks of Vibius as being "ingenuæ stirpis," "of good family."—B.
9 Hardouin expands the words "os probum," into "liberale, venustum, gratum, venerandum, probandum," B. xxxvii. c. 6.—B.
10 See B. xxxvii. c. 6.
11 The Latin word "strabo," means "squinting," or "having a cast" or "defect in the eye."
12 The word "mimus" was applied by the Romans to a species of dramatic performance, as well as to the persons who acted in them. The Roman mimes were imitations of trivial and sometimes indecent occurrences in life, and scarcely differed from comedy, except in consisting more of gestures and mimicry than of spoken dialogue. Sylla was very fond of these performances, and they had more charms for the Roman populace than the regular drama. As to the mime Salvitto, here mentioned, see B. xxxv. c. 2.
13 This anecdote, and the one respecting Spinther and Pamphilus, are mentioned also by Val. Maximus, B. ix. c. 24.—B.
14 A celebrated orator and satirical writer of the time of Augustus and Tiberius. He is mentioned in the Index of authors at the end of B. xxxvi., where he is called Longulanus, as being a native of Longula, a town of Latium. It was even thrown in his teeth, that he was the offspring of adultery, and that this low-born person was his father.
15 "Mirmillonis." Many of the editions make this word to be a proper name, and "Armentarius" to signify the calling of the person described, as being a herdsman. The "Mirmillones" were a peculiar class of gladiators, said to have been so called from their having the image of a fish, called "mormyr," on their helmets.
16 We assume the sestertium to be equivalent to somewhat more than eight pounds sterling; this sum will be about £1600.—B.
17 "Proscripter animus." According to Hardouin, this means "delighting in proscription," alluding to the well-known proscriptions of the triumvirate, in which Antony acted so conspicuous a part.—B.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.