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CADMUS. B.C. 1500 Different kinds of greatness. Some men are renowned in history on account of the extraordinary powers and capacities which they exhibited in the course of their career, or the intrinsic greatness of the deeds which they performed. Others, without having really achieved any thing in itself very great or wonderful, have become widely known to mankind by reason of the vast consequences which, in the subsequent course of events,... more...

CHAPTER I. A ROMAN BOY. A Roman father's first duty to his boy, after lifting him up in his arms in token that he was a true son of the house, was to furnish him with a first name out of the scanty list (just seventeen) to which his choice was limited. This naming was done on the eighth day after birth, and was accompanied with some religious ceremonies, and with a feast to which kinsfolk were invited. Thus named he was enrolled in some family... more...

LIVY'S ROMAN HISTORY BOOK I[1] THE PERIOD OF THE KINGS To begin with, it is generally admitted that, after the taking of Troy, while all the other Trojans were treated with severity, in the case of two, Æneas and Antenor, the Greeks forbore to exercise the full rights of war, both on account of an ancient tie of hospitality, and because they had persistently recommended peace and the restoration of Helen: and then Antenor, after various... more...

THE ESTRANGER I In the effort to dull the edge of his mental anguish by physical exhaustion Catullus had walked far out from the town, through vineyards and fruit-orchards displaying their autumnal stores and clamorous with eager companies of pickers and vintagers. On coming back to the eastern gate he found himself reluctant to pass from the heedless activities of the fields to the bustle of the town streets and the formal observances of... more...

HISTORY OF THE WARS: BOOK V THE GOTHIC WAR I Such, then, were the fortunes of the Romans in Libya. I shall now proceed to the Gothic War, first telling all that befell the Goths and Italians before this war. 474-491 a.d.During the reign of Zeno Byzantium the power in the West was held by Augustus, whom the Romans used to call by the diminutive name Augustulus because he took over the empire while still a lad,July 31, 475 a.d. his father... more...


CHAPTER I. GEOGRAPHICAL OUTLINE OF ITALY. Italia! oh, Italia! thou who hastThe fatal gift of beauty, which becameA funeral dower of present woes and past,On thy sweet brow is sorrow plough'd by shame,And annals traced in characters of flame.—Byron. 1. The outline of Italy presents a geographical unity and completeness which naturally would lead us to believe that it was regarded as a whole, and named as a single country, from... more...

CHAPTER I"A LAND OF OLD RENOWN" If we were asked to name the most interesting country in the world, I suppose that most people would say Palestine—not because there is anything so very wonderful in the land itself, but because of all the great things that have happened there, and above all because of its having been the home of our Lord. But after Palestine, I think that Egypt would come next. For one thing, it is linked very closely to... more...

Chapter I. Nero's Mother. A.D. 37 Roman country seats. In ancient times, when the city of Rome was at the height of its power and splendor, it was the custom, as it is in fact now with the inhabitants of wealthy capitals, for the principal families to possess, in addition to their city residences, rural villas for summer retreats, which they built in picturesque situations, at a little distance from the city, sometimes in the interior of the... more...

Address to the Mummy. "And thou hast walked about, (how strange a story!)In Thebes' streets three thousand years ago,When the Memnonium was in all its glory,And time had not begun to overthrowThose temples, palaces and piles stupendous,Of which the very ruins are tremendous. "Perhaps that very hand now pinioned flat,Has hob-a-nobbed with Pharaoh, glass to glass;Or dropped a half-penny in Homer's hat;Or doffed thine own to let Queen Dido... more...

THAT WOMAN When the murder was done and the heralds shouted through the thick streets the passing of Caesar, it was the passing of the republic they announced, the foundation of Imperial Rome. There was a hush, then a riot which frightened a senate that frightened the world. Caesar was adored. A man who could give millions away and sup on dry bread was apt to conquer, not provinces alone, but hearts. Besides, he had begun well and his people... more...