Jugurtha, as he grew up, being strong in frame, graceful in person, but, above all, vigorous in understanding, did not allow himself to be enervated by pleasure and indolence, but, as is the usage of his country, exercised himself in riding, throwing the javelin, and contending in the race with his equals in age; and, though he excelled them all in reputation, he was yet beloved by all. He also passed much of his time in hunting; he was first, or among the first, to wound the lion and other beasts; he performed very much, but spoke very little of himself.
Micipsa, though he was at first gratified with these circumstances, considering that the merit of Jugurtha would be an honor to his kingdom, yet, when he reflected that the youth was daily increasing in popularity, while he himself was advanced in age, and his children but young, he was extremely disturbed at the state of things, and revolved it frequently in his mind. The very nature of man, ambitious of power, and eager to gratify its desires, gave him reason for apprehension, as well as the opportunity afforded by his own age and that of his children, which was sufficient, from the prospect of such a prize, to lead astray even men of moderate desires. The affection of the Numidians, too, which was strong toward Jugurtha, was another cause for alarm; among whom, if he should cut off such a man, he feared that some insurrection or war might arise.