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There was at this period in Rome a certain Numidian named Massiva, a son of Gulussa and grandson of Masinissa, who, from having been, in the dissensions among the princes, opposed to Jugurtha, had been obliged, after the surrender of Cirta and the murder of Adherbal, to make his escape out of Africa. Spurius Albinus, who was consul with Quintus Minucius Rufus the year after Bestia, prevailed upon this man, as he was of the family of Masinissa, and as odium and terror hung over Jugurtha for his crimes, to petition the senate for the kingdom of Numidia. Albinus,being eager for the conduct of a war, was desirous that affairs should be disturbed,1 rather than sink into tranquillity; especially as, in the division of the provinces, Numidia had fallen to himself, and Macedonia to Minucius.

When Massiva proceeded to carry these suggestions into execution, Jugurtha, finding that he had no sufficient support in his friends, as a sense of guilt deterred some, and evil report or timidity others, from coming forward in his behalf, directed Bomilcar, his most attached and faithful adherent, to procure by the aid of money, by which he had already effected so much, assassins to kill Massiva; and to do it secretly if he could; but, if secrecy should be impossible, to cut him off' in any way whatsoever. This commission Bomilcar soon found means to execute; and, by the agency of men versed in such service, ascertained the direction of his journeys, his hours of leaving home, and the times at which he resorted to particular places,2 and, when all was ready, placed his assassins in ambush. One of their number sprung upon Massiva, though with too little caution, and killed him; but being himself caught, he made, at the instigation of many, and especially of Albinus the consul, a full confession. Bomilcar was accordingly committed for trial, though rather on the principles of reason and justice than in accordance with the law of nations,3 as he was in the retinue of one who had come to Rome on a pledge of the public faith for his safety. But Jugurtha, though clearly guilty of the crime, did not cease to struggle against the truth, until he perceived that the infamy of the deed was too strong for his interest or his money. For which reason, although, at the commencement of the proceedings,4 he had given fifty of his friends as bail for Bomilcar, yet, thinking more of his kingdom than of the sureties, he sent him off privately into Numidia; for he feared that if such a man should be executed, his other subjects would be deterred from obeying him.5 A few days after, he himself departed, having been ordered by the senate to quit Italy. But, as he was going from Rome, he is said, after frequently looking back on it in silence, to have at last exclaimed, "That it was a venal city, and would soon perish, if it could but find a purchaser !"6

1 XXXV. Should be disturbed] “Movere” is the reading of Cortius; moveri that of most other editors, in conformity with most of the MSS. and early editions.

2 The times at which he resorted to particular places] “Loca atque temrora cuncta.” "All his places and times." There can be no doubt that the sense is what I have given in the text.

3 In accordance with the law of nations, etc.] As the public faith had been pledged to Jugurtha for his security, his retinue was on the same footing as that of embassadors, the persons of whose attendants are considered as inviolable as their own, as long as they commit no offense against the laws of the country in which they are resident. If any such offense is committed by an attendant of an embassador, an application is usually made by the government to the embassador to deliver him up for trial. Bomilcar seems to have been apprehended without any application having been made to Jugurtha; as, in our own country, the Portuguese embassador's brother, who was one of his retinue, was apprehended and executed for a murder, by Oliver Cromwell. See, on this point, Grotius De Jure Bell. et Pac., xviii. 8; Vattel, iv. 9; Burlamaqui on Politic Law, part iv. ch. 15. Jugurtha, says Vattel, should have given up Bomilcar; but such was not Jugurtha's object.

4 At the commencement of the proceedings] “In priori actione.” That is, when Bomilcar was apprehended and charged with the murder.

5 His other subjects would be deterred from obeying him] “Reliquos popularis metus invaderet parendi sibi.” "Fear of obeying him should take possession of his other subjects."

6 That it was a venal city, etc.] “Urbem venalem,” etc. I consider, with Cortius, that this is the proper way of taking these words. Some would render them O venal city, etc., because Livy, Epit. lxiv., has O urbem venalem, but this seems to require that the verb should be in the second person; and it is probable that in Livy we should either eject the "O" or read inveneris. Florus, iii. 1, gives the words in the same way as Sallust.

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