At the very time that Thala was taken, there came to Metellus embassadors from the city of Leptis,1
requesting him to send them a garrison and a governor; saying "that a certain Hamilcar, a man of rank, and of a factious disposition, against whom the magistrates and the laws were alike powerless, was trying to induce them to change sides; and that unless he attended to the matter promptly, their own safety,"2
and the allies of Rome, would be in the utmost danger." For the people at Leptis, at the very commencement of the war
with Jugurtha, had sent to the consul Bestia, and afterward to Rome, desiring to be admitted into friendship and alliance with us. Having been granted their request, they continued true and faithful adherents to us, and promptly executed all orders from Bestia, Albinus, and Metellus. They therefore readily obtained from the general the aid which they solicited; and four cohorts of Ligurians were dispatched to Leptis, with Caius Annius to be governor of the place.