a Roman who raised his family from
obscurity to the highest rank among the Roman nobles. He was born in B.C. 163. His father,
notwithstanding his patrician descent, had been obliged, through poverty, to carry on the
trade of a coal merchant, and left his son a very slender patrimony. The latter had thought
at first of carrying on the trade of a money-lender; but he finally resolved to devote
himself to the study of eloquence, with the hope of rising to the honors of the State. He
likewise served in the army, where he appears to have gained some distinction. He was curule
aedile in 123, and obtained the consulship in 115, when he carried on war with success
against several of the Alpine tribes. In 112 he was sent at the head of an embassy to
Iugurtha; and in 111 he accompanied the consul, L. Calpurnius Bestia, as one of his legates,
in the war against Iugurtha. The Numidian king bestowed large sums of money upon both Bestia
and Scaurus, in consequence of which the consul granted the king most favourable terms of
peace. This disgraceful transaction excited the greatest indignation at Rome; and C.
Mamilius, the tribune of the people (B.C. 110) brought forward a bill by which an inquiry was
to be instituted against all those who had received bribes from Iugurtha. Although Scaurus
had been one of the most guilty, such was his influence in the State that he contrived to be
appointed one of the three quaesitores who were elected under the bill for the purpose of
prosecuting the criminals. But, though he thus secured himself, he was unable to save any of
his accomplices. Bestia and many others were condemned. In 109, Scaurus was censor with M.
Livius Drusus. In his consulship he restored the Milvian Bridge, and constructed the Aemilian
Way, which ran by Pisae and Luna as far as Dertona. In 107 he was elected
consul a second time, in place of L. Cassius Longinus, who had fallen in battle against the
Tigurini. In the struggles between the aristocratical and popular parties, Scaurus was always
a warm supporter of the former. He was several times accused of different offences, chiefly
by his private enemies; but such was his influence in the State, that he was always
acquitted. He died about B.C. 89. By his wife Caecilia Scaurus had three children, two sons
mentioned below, and a daughter Aemilia, first married to M'. Glabrio, and next to Cn.
Pompey, subsequently the triumvir.
, eldest son of the preceding, and stepson
of the dictator Sulla , whom his mother Caecilia married after the death of his father. In
the Third Mithridatic War he served under Pompey as quaestor. The latter sent him to Damascus
with an army, and from thence he marched into Iudaea, to settle the disputes between the
brothers Hyrcanus and Aristobulus. Scaurus was left by Pompey in the command of Syria with
two legions. During his government of Syria he made a predatory incursion into Arabia
Petraea, but withdrew on the payment of 300 talents by Aretas, the king of the country. He
was curule aedile in B.C. 58, when he celebrated the public games with extraordinary
splendour. The temporary theatre which he built accommodated 80,000 spectators, and was
adorned in the most magnificent manner. Three hundred and sixty pillars decorated the stage,
arranged in three stories, of which the lowest was made of white marble, the middle one of
glass, and the highest of gilt wood. The combats of wild beasts were equally astonishing. One
hundred and fifty panthers were exhibited in the circus, and five crocodiles and a
hippopotamus were seen for the first time at Rome. In the year 56 he was praetor, and in the
following year governed the province of Sardinia, which he plundered without mercy. On his
return to Rome he was accused of the crime of repetundae.
defended by Cicero, Hortensius, and others, and was acquitted, notwithstanding his guilt. He
was accused again in 52, under Pompey's new law against bribery, and was condemned. He
married Mucia, who had been previously the wife of Pompey, and by her he had one son.
Younger son of No. 1, fought under the proconsul, Q. Catulus, against the Cimbri at the
Athesis, and having fled from the field, was indignantly commanded by his father not to come
into his presence; whereupon the youth put an end to his life.
, son of No. 2, and Mucia, the former wife
of Pompey the triumvir, and consequently the half-brother of Sex. Pompey. He accompanied the
latter into Asia, after the defeat of his fleet in Sicily, but betrayed him into the hands of
the generals of M. Antonius, in 35. After the battle of Actium, he fell into the power of
Octavian, and escaped death, to which he had been sentenced, only through the intercession of
his mother, Mucia.
, son of No. 5, was a distinguished
orator and poet, but of a dissolute character. He was a member of the Senate at the time of
the accession of Tiberius, A.D. 14, when he offended that suspicious emperor by some remarks
which he made in the Senate. Being accused of maiestas
in 34, he put an
end to his own life.