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1 XCV. For I shall in no other place allude to his affairs] “Neque enim alio loco de Sullœ rebus dicturi sumus.” “"These words show that Sallust, at this time, had not thought of writing Histories, but that he turned his attention to that pursuit after he had finished the Jugurthine war. For that he spoke of Sylla in his large history is apparent from several extant fragments of it, and from Plutarch, who quotes Sallust, Vit. Syll., c. 3."” Kritzius.
2 Lucius Sisenna] He wrote a history of the civil wars between Sylla and Marius, Vell. Paterc. ii. 9. Cicero alludes to his style as being jejune and puerile, Brut., c. 64, De Legg. i. 2. About a hundred and fifty fragments of his history remain.
3 Except that he might have acted more for his honor with regard to his wife] “Nisi quod de uxore potuit honestius consuli.” As these words are vague and indeterminate, it is not agreed among the critics and translators to what part of Sylla's life Sallust refers. I suppose, with Rupertus, Aldus, Manutius, Crispinus, and De Brosses, that the allusion is to his connection with Valeria, of which the history is given by Plutarch in his life of Sylla, which the English reader may take in Langhorne's translation: " A few months after Metella's death, he presented the people with a show of gladiators; and as, at that time, men and women had no separate places, but sat promiscuously in the theater, a woman of great beauty, and of one of the best families, happened to sit near Sylla. She was the daughter of Messala, and sister to the orator Hortensius; her name was Valeria ; and she had lately been divorced from her husband. This woman, coming behind Sylla, touched him, and took off a little of the nap of his robe, and then returned to her place. Sylla looked at her, quite amazed at her familiarity, when she said, ' Wonder not, my lord, at what I have done; I had only a mind to share a little in your good fortune.' Sylla was far from being displeased; on the contrary, it appeared that he was flattered very agreeably, for he sent to ask her name, and to inquire into her family and character. Then followed an interchange of amorous regards and smiles, which ended in a contract and marriage. The lady, perhaps, was not to blame. But Sylla, though he got a woman of reputation, and great accomplishments, yet came into the match upon wrong principles. Like a youth, he was caught with soft looks and languishing airs, things that are wont to excite the lowest of the passions." Others have thought that Sallust refers to Sylla's conduct on the death of his wife Metella, above mentioned, to whom, as she happened to fall sick when he was giving an entertainment to the people, and as the priest forbade him to have his house defiled with death on the occasion, he unfeelingly sent a bill of divorce, ordering her to be carried out of the house while the breath was in her. Cortius, Kritz, and Langius, think that the allusion is to Sylla's general faithlessness to his wives, for he had several; as if Sallust had used the singular for the plural, uxore for uxoribus, or re uxoriâ; but if Sallust meant to allude to more than one wife, why should he have restricted himiself to the singular?
4 Lived on the easiest terms with his friends] “Facilis amicitiâ.” The critics are in doubt about the sense of this phrase. I have given that which Dietsch prefers, who says that a man facilis amicitiâ is "one who easily grants his friends all that they desire, exacts little from them, and is no severe censor of their morals." Cortius explains it facilis ad amicitiam, and Facciolati, in his Lexicon, facilè sibi amicos parans, but these interpretations, as Kritzius observes, are hardly suitable to the ablative case.
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