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To this address, Jugurtha, though he knew that the king had spoken insincerely,1 and though he was himself revolving thoughts of a far different nature, yet replied with good feeling, suitable to the occasion. A few days afterward Micipsa died.

When the princes had performed his funeral with due magnificence, they met together to hold a discussion on the general condition of their affairs. Hiempsal, the youngest, who was naturally violent, and who had previously shown contempt for the mean birth of Jugurtha, as being inferior on his mother's side, sat down on the right hand of Adherbal, in order to prevent Jugurtha from being the middle one of the three, which is regarded by the Numidians as the seat of honor.2 Being urged by his brother, however, to yield to superior age, he at length removed, but with reluctance, to the other seat.3

In the course of this conference, after a long debate about the administration of the kingdom, Jugurtha suggested, among other measures, "that all the acts and decrees made in the last five years should be annulled, as Micipsa, during that period, had been enfeebled by age, and scarcely sound in intellect." Hiempsal replied, "that he was exceedingly pleased with the proposal, since Jugurtha himself, within the last three years, had been adopted as joint-heir to the throne." This repartee sunk deeper into the mind of Jugurtha than any one imagined. From that very time, accordingly, being agitated with resentment and jealousy, he began to meditate and concert schemes, and to think of nothing but projects for secretly cutting off Hiempsal. But his plans proving slow in operation, and his angry feelings remaining unabated, he resolved to execute his purpose by any means whatsoever.

1 XI. Had spoken insincerely] “Ficta locutum.” Jugurtha saw that Micipsa pretended more love for him than he really felt. Compare c. 6, 7.

2 Which is regarded by the Numidians as the seat of honor] “Quod apud Numidas honori ducitur.” "I incline," says Sir Henry Steuart, "to consider those manuscripts as the most correct, in which the word et is placed immediately before apud, Quod et apud Numidas honori ducitur." Sir Henry might have learned, had he consulted the commentators, that "the word etis placed immediately before apud" in no manuscript; that Lipsius was the first who proposed its insertion; and that Crispinus, the only editor who has received it into his text, is ridiculed by Wasse for his folly. "Lipsius," says Cortius, "cùm sciret apud Romanos etiam medium locum honoratiorem fuisse, corrigit: quod et apud Numidas honori ducitur. Sed quis talia ab historico exegerit? Si de Numidis narrat, non facilè aliquis intulerit, aliter propterea fuisse apud Romanos."

3 To the other seat] “In alteram partem.” We must suppose that the three seats were placed ready for the three princes; that Adherbal sat down first, in one of the outside seats; the one, namely, that would be on the right hand of a spectator facing them; and that Hiempsal immediately took the middle seat, on Abherbal's right hand, so as to force Jugurtha to take the other outside one. Abherbal had then to remove Hiempsal in alteram parten, that is, to induce him to take the seat corresponding to his own, on the other side of the middle one.

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