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The younger Scipio Africanus left to his heir thirty-two pounds' weight of silver; the same person who, on his triumph over the Carthaginians, displayed four thousand three hundred and seventy pounds' weight of that metal. Such was the sum total of the silver possessed by the whole of the inhabitants of Carthage, that rival of Rome for the empire of the world! How many a Roman since then has surpassed her in his display of plate for a single table! After the destruction of Numantia, the same Africanus gave to his soldiers, on the day of his triumph, a largess of seven denarii each—and right worthy were they of such a general, when satisfied with such a sum! His brother, Scipio Allobrogicus,1 was the very first who possessed one thousand pounds' weight of silver, but Drusus Livius, when he was tribune of the people, possessed ten thousand. As to the fact that an ancient warrior,2 a man, too, who had enjoyed a triumph, should have incurred the notice of the censor for being in possession of five pounds' weight of silver, it is a thing that would appear quite fabulous at the present day.3 The same, too, with the instance of Catus Ælius,4 who, when consul, after being found by the Ætolian ambassadors taking his morning meal5 off of common earthenware, refused to receive the silver vessels which they sent him; and, indeed, was never in possession, to the last day of his life, of any silver at all, with the exception of two drinking-cups, which had been presented to him as the reward of his valour, by L. Paulus,6 his father-in-law, on the conquest of King Perseus.

We read, too, that the Carthaginian ambassadors declared that no people lived on more amicable terms among themselves than the Romans, for that wherever they had dined they had always met with the same7 silver plate. And yet, by Hercules! to my own knowledge, Pompeius Paulinus, son of a Roman of equestrian rank at Arelate,8 a member, too, of a family, on the paternal side, that was graced with the fur,9 had with him, when serving with the army, and that, too, in a war against the most savage nations, a service of silver plate that weighed twelve thousand pounds!

1 So called from his victory over the Allobroges.

2 In allusion to the case of P. Cornelius Rufinus, the consul, who was denounced in the senate by the censors C. Fabricius Luscinus and Q. Æmilius Rufus, for being in possession of a certain quantity of silver plate. This story is also referred to in B. xviii. c. 8, where ten pounds is the quantity mentioned.

3 This is said ironically.

4 Sextus Ælius Pœtus Catus, Consul B.C. 198.

5 "Prandentem."

6 L. Paulus Æmilius.

7 It being lent from house to house. This, no doubt, was said ironically, and as a sneer at their poverty.

8 Now Arles. It was made a military colony in the time of Augustus. See B. iii. c. 5, and B. x. c. 57.

9 "Pellitum." There has been considerable doubt as to the meaning of this, but it is most probable that the "privilege of the fur," or in other words, a license to be clad in certain kinds of fur, was conferred on certain men of rank in the provinces. Holland considers it to be the old participle of "pello," and translates the passage "banished out of the country and nation where his father was born."

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