But besides his massacres, the rest of Sulla's proceedings also gave offence. For he proclaimed himself dictator,1
reviving this particular office after a lapse of a hundred and twenty years. Moreover, an act was passed granting him immunity for all his past acts, and for the future, power of life and death, of confiscation, of colonization, of founding or demolishing cities, and of taking away or bestowing kingdoms at his pleasure.
He conducted the sales of confiscated estates in such arrogant and imperious fashion, from the tribunal where he sat, that his gifts excited more odium than his robberies. He bestowed on handsome women, musicians, comic actors, and the lowest of freedmen, the territories of nations and the revenues of cities, and women were married against their will to some of his favourites.
In the case of Pompey the Great,2
at least, wishing to establish relationship with him, he ordered him to divorce the wife he had, and then gave him in marriage Aemilia, daughter of Scaurus and his own wife Metella, whom he tore away from Manius Glabrio when she was with child by him; and the young woman died in childbirth at the house of Pompey.3
Lucretius Ofella, who had reduced Marius by siege, gave himself out as a candidate for the consulship, and Sulla at first tried to stop him; but when Ofella came down into the forum with a large and eager following, he sent one of the centurions in his retinue and slew him, himself sitting on a tribunal in the temple of Castor and beholding the murder from above. The people in the forum seized the centurion and brought him before the tribunal, but Sulla bade them cease their clamour, and said that he himself had ordered this deed, and commanded them to let the centurion go.