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At length, on the fourth day of his march, when he was not far from the town of Cirta, his scouts suddenly made their appearance from all quarters at once; a circumstance by which the enemy was known to be at hand. But as they came in from different points, and all gave the same account, the consul, doubting in what form to draw up his army, made no alteration in it, but halted where he was, being already prepared for every contingency. Jugurtha's expectations, in consequence, disappointed him; for he had divided his force into four bodies, trusting that one of them, assuredly,1 would surprise the Romans in the rear. Sylla, meanwhile, with whom they first came in contact, having cheered on his men, charged the Moors, in person and with his officers,2 with troop after troop of cavalry, in the closest order possible; while the rest of his force, retaining their position, protected themselves against the darts thrown from a distance, and killed such of the enemy as fell into their hands.

While the cavalry was thus engaged, Bocchus, with his infantry, which his son Volux had brought up, and which, from delay on their march, had not been present in the former battle, assailed the Romans in the rear. Marius was at that moment occupied in front, as Jugurtha was there with his largest force, The Numidian king, hearing of the arrival of Bocchus, wheeled secretly about, with a few of his followers, to the infantry,3 and exclaimed in Latin, which he had learned to speak at Numantia, "that our men were struggling in vain; for that he had just slain Marius with his own hand;" showing, at the same time, his sword besmeared with blood, which he had, indeed, sufficiently stained by vigorously cutting down our infantry.4 When the soldiers heard this, they felt a shock, though rather at the horror of such an event, than from belief in him who asserted it; the barbarians, on the other hand, assumed fresh courage, and advanced with greater fury on the disheartened Romans, who were just on the point of taking to flight, when Sylla, having routed those to whom he had been opposed, fell upon the Moors in the flank. Bocchus instantly fled. Jugurtha, anxious to support his men, and to secure a victory so nearly won, was surrounded by our cavalry, and all his attendants, right and left, being slain, had to force a way alone, with great difficulty, through the weapons of the enemy. Marius, at the same time, having put to flight the cavalry, came up to support such of his men as he had understood to be giving ground. At last the enemy were defeated in every quarter. The spectacle on the open plains was then frightful;5 some were pursuing, others fleeing; some were being slain, others captured; men and horses were dashed to the earth; many, who were wounded, could neither flee nor remain at rest, attempting to rise, and instantly falling back; and the whole field, as far as the eye could reach, was strewed with arms and dead bodies, and the intermediate spaces saturated with blood.

1 CI. Trusting that one of them, assuredly, etc.] “Ratus ex omnibus œquè aliquos ab tergo hostibus ventures.” By œquè Sallust signifies that each of the four bodies would have an equal chance of coming on the rear of the Romans.

2 In person and with his officers] “Ipse aliique.” “"The alii are the prœfecti equitum, officers of the cavalry."” Kritzius.

3 Wheeled secretly about--to the infantry] “Clam--ad pedites convortit.” What infantry are meant, the commentators can not agree, nor is there any thing in the narrative on which a satisfactory decision can be founded. As the arrival of Bocchus is mentioned immediately before, Cortius supposes that the infantry of Bocchus are signified; and it may be so; but to whatever party the words were addressed, they were intended to be heard by the Romans, or for what purpose were they spoken in Latin ? Jugurtha may have spoken the words in both languages, and this, from what follows would appear to have been the case, for both sides understood him. Quod ubi milites (evidently the Roman soldiers) accepere--simul barbari animos tollere, etc. The clam signifies that Jugurtha turned about, or wheeled off, so as to escape the notice of Marius, with whom he had been contending.

4 By vigorously cutting down our infantry] “Satis impigrè occiso pedite nostro.” “"A ces mots il leur montra son épéc teinte du sang des nôtres, dent il venait, en effet, de faire une assez cruelle boucherie."” De Brosses. Of the other French translators, Beauzée and Le Brun render the passage in a similar way; Dotteville and Dureau Delamalle, as well as all our English translators, take pedite as signifying only one soldier. Sir Henry Steuart even specifies that it was "a legionary soldier." The commentators, I should suppose, have all regarded the word as having a plural signification none of them, except Burnouf, who expresses a needless doubt, say any thing on the point.

5 The spectacle on the open plains was then frightful, etc.] “Tum spectaculum horribile campis patentibus,” etc. The idea of this passage was probably taken, as Ciacconius intimates, from a description in Xenophon, Agesil. ii. 12, 14, part of which is quoted by Longinus, Sect. 19, as an example of the effect produced by the omission of conjunctions: Καὶ συμβαλόντες τὰς ἀσπίδας ἐωθοῦντο, ἐμάχοντο, ἀπέκτεινον, ἀπέθνησκον. . . . ᾿Επεί γε μὴν ἔληξεν μάχη, παρῆν δὴ θεάσασθαι ἔνθα συνέπεσον ἀλλήλοις, τὴν μὲν γῆν ἁίματι πεφυρμένην, νεκροὺς δὲ κειμένους φιλίους καὶ πολεμίους μετ᾽ ἀλλήλων, ἀσπίδαζ δὲ διατεθρυμμένας, δόρατα συντεθραυσμένα, ἐγχειρίδια γυμνὰ κουλεῶν τὰ μὲν χαμαὶ, τὰ δ᾽ ἐν σώμασι, τὰ δ᾽ ἔτι μετὰ χεῖρας. "Closing their shields together, they pushed, they fought, they slew, they were slain. . . . . . But when the battle was over, you might have seen, where they had fought, the ground clotted with blood, the corpses of friends and enemies mingled together, and pierced shields, broken lances, and swords without their sheaths, strewed on the ground, sticking in the dead bodies, or still remaining in the hands that had wielded them when alive." Tacitus, Agric. c. 37, has copied this description of Sallust, as all the commentators have remarked: Tum vero patentibus locis grande et atrox spectaculum. Sequi, vulnerare, capere, atque eosdem, oblatis aliis, trucidare. . . . . . Passim arma et corpora, et laceri artus, et cruenta humus. "The sight on the open field was then striking and horrible; they pursued, they inflicted wounds, they took men prisoners, and slaughtered them as others presented themselves. . . . Every where were seen arms and corpses, mangled limbs, and the ground stained with blood."

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