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19. Having thus obtained the kingdom, he sets about establishing anew, on the principles of laws and morals, the city recently established by violence and arms. When he saw that their minds, as having been rendered ferocious by military life, could not be reconciled to those principles during the continuance of wars, considering that a fierce people should be mollified by the disuse of arms, he erected at the foot of Argiletum a temple of Janus, as an index of peace and war; that when open, it might show the state was engaged in war, and when shut, that all the neighbouring nations were at peace with it. [2] Twice only since the reign of Numa hath this temple been shut; once when T. Manlius was consul, at the end of the first Punic war; and a second time, which the gods granted our age to see, by the emperor Augustus Caesar, after the battle of Actium, peace being established by sea and land. [3] This being shut, after he had secured the friendship of the neighboring states around by alliance and treaties, all anxiety regarding dangers from abroad being removed, lest their minds, which the fear of enemies and military discipline had kept in check, should become licentious by tranquillity, he [p. 27]considered, that, first of all, an awe of the gods should be instilled into them, a principle of the greatest efficacy with a multitude ignorant and uncivilized as in those times. But as it could not sink deeply into their minds without some fiction of a miracle, he pretends that he holds nightly interviews with the goddess Egeria; that by her direction he instituted the sacred rites which would be most acceptable to the gods, and appointed proper priests for each of the deities. [4] And, first of all, he divides the year into twelve months, according to the course of the moon; and because the moon does not make up thirty days in each month, and some days are wanting to the complete year as constituted by the solstitial revolution, he so portioned it out by inserting intercalary months, that every twenty-fourth year, the lengths of all the intermediate years being completed, the days should correspond to the same place of the sun (in the heavens) whence they had set out.1 He likewise made a distinction of the days2 into pro- [p. 28]fane and sacred, because on some it was likely to be expedient that no business should be transacted with the people.

1 Romulus had made his year to consist of ten months, the first month being March, and the number of days in the year being only 304, which corresponded neither with the course [5] of the sun or moon. Numa, who added the two months of January and February, divided the year into twelve months, according to the course of the moon. This was the lunar Greek year, and consisted of 354 days. Numa, however, adopted 355 days for his year, from his partiality to odd numbers. The lunar year of 354 days fell short of the solar year by 11 1/4 days; —this in 8 years amounted to (11 1/4 × 8) 90 days. These 90 days he divided into 2 months of 22 and 2 of 23 days, (\overline(2 × 22) + \overline(2 × 23) = 90,) and introduced them alternately every second year for two octennial periods: every third octennial period, however, Numa intercalated only 66 days instead of 90 days, i. e. he inserted 3 months of only 22 days each. The reason was, because [6??] he adopted 355 days as the length of his lunar year instead of 354, and this in 24 years (3 octennial periods) produced an error of 24 days; this error was exactly compensated by intercalating only 66 days (90 —24) in the third octennial period. The intercalations were generally made in the month of February, after the 23rd of the month. Their management was left to the pontiffs —ad metam eandem solis unde orsi essent —dies congruerent; “that the days might correspond to the same starting-point of the sun in the heavens whence they had set out.” That is, taking for instance the tropic of Cancer for the place or starting-point of the sun any one year, and observing that he was in that point of the heavens on precisely the 21st of June, the object was so to dispense the year, that the day on which the sun was observed to arrive at that same meta or starting-point again, should also be called the 21st of June: —such was the congruity aimed [7??] at by these intercalations.

2

Ille nefastus erit per quem tria verba silentur;
Fastus erit, per quem lege licebit agi.

Ov. F. i. 47.

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load focus Notes (W. Weissenborn, H. J. Müller, 1898)
load focus Summary (Latin, Benjamin Oliver Foster, Ph.D., 1919)
load focus Summary (English, Benjamin Oliver Foster, Ph.D., 1919)
load focus Summary (Latin, W. Weissenborn, H. J. Müller, 1898)
load focus English (Rev. Canon Roberts, 1912)
load focus Latin (W. Weissenborn, H. J. Müller, 1898)
load focus Latin (Benjamin Oliver Foster, Ph.D., 1919)
load focus Latin (Robert Seymour Conway, Charles Flamstead Walters, 1914)
load focus English (Benjamin Oliver Foster, Ph.D., 1919)
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  • Commentary references to this page (7):
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 31-32, commentary, 31.13
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 31-32, commentary, 31.24
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 35-38, commentary, 38.34
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 41-42, commentary, 42.3
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 41-42, commentary, 42.pos=76
    • Titus Livius (Livy), Ab urbe condita libri, erklärt von M. Weissenborn, books 43-44, commentary, 44.41
    • Charles Simmons, The Metamorphoses of Ovid, Books XIII and XIV, 14.785
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  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (30):
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