Ma'rius or Marius the Younger or the Younger Marius
2. C. Marius
, the son of the great Marius, was only an adopted son. (Liv. Epit. 86
; Vell. 2.26
.) Appian in one passage (B. C. 1.87) calls him a nephew of the preceding, though he had previously spoken of him as his son (B. C. 1.62).
He was born in B. C. 109; and the particulars of his life down to the time of his father's death are related in the preceding article. During the three years after the death of the elder Marius Sulla was engaged in the prosecution of the war against Mithridates, and Italy was entirely in the hands of the Marian party.
The young Marius followed in the footsteps of his father, and was equally distisguished by merciless severity against his enemies. he was elected consul for the year B. C. 82, when he was twenty-seven years of age, and his colleague was Cn. Papirius Carbo. Slla had landed at Brundisium at the beginning of the preceding year, and after conquering the southern part of the peninsula, appears to have passed the winter in Campania. Marius was stationed on the frontiers of Latium to oppose him; and the decisive battle was fought near Sacriportus (the position of which is quite uncertain). Marius was entirely defeated, and threw himself into the strongly-fortified town of Praeneste, where he had deposited the treasures of the Capitoline temple (Plin. Nat. 33.1.. s. 5
): Sulla left Lucretius Opella to prosecute the siege while he hastened on to Rome. But Marius, resolving that his enemies should not escape, sent orders to L. Junius Brutus Damasippus, who was then praetor at Rome, to summon the senate under some pretext, and put to death Mucius Scaevola, the pontifex maximus, and many others. [BRUTUS, No. 19.] Various efforts were made to relieve Praeneste, but they all failed; and after Sulla's great victory at the Colline gate of Rome, in which Pontius Telesinus was defeated and slain, Marius despaired of holding out any longer, and, in company with the brother of Telesinus, attempted to escape by a subterraneous passage, which led from the town into the open country; but finding that their flight was discovered, they put an end to one another's lives.
According to other accounts, Marius killed himself, or was killed by his slave at his own request. Marius perished in the year of his consulship. His head was cut off and carried to Sulla, who contemptuously remarked, in allusion to his youth, that he ought to have worked at the oar before steering the vessel.
It was after the death of the younger Marius that Sulla first assumed the surname of Felix. (Plut. Sull. 28
46; Appian, App. BC 1.87
; Liv. Epit. 86
; Veil. Pat. 2.26, 27; Flor. 3.21
; Oros. 5.20
; V. Max. 6.8.2