Livy, Periochae 66-70

Titus Livius or Livy (59 BCE - 17 CE): Roman historian, author of the authorized version of the history of the Roman republic.

A large part of Livy's History of Rome since the Foundation is now lost, but fortunately we have an excerpt, called the Periochae, which helps us reconstruct the general scope. This translation was made by Jona Lendering.


From Book 66

[66.1] [106 BCE] When Jugurtha, expelled from Numidia by Gaius Marius, received help of Bocchus, king of the Maurians, Bocchus' troops were slaughtered in battle and Bocchus no longer wanted to continue the war he had so unfortunately undertaken. He threw Jugurtha in chains and handed him over to Marius; in this affair, the main actor was Lucius Cornelius Sulla, the quaestor of Gaius Marius.

From Book 67

[67.1] [105] After the defeat of his army, Marcus Aurelius Scaurus, a deputy of the consul, was captured by the Cimbrians and called to their council, where he deterred them from crossing the Alps and going to Italy, saying that the Romans were unconquerable. He was killed by a savage young man, Boiorix.

[67.2] Defeated by the same enemies, consul Gnaeus Manlius and proconsul Quintus Servilius Caepio were stripped of both their camps; according to Valerius Antias, 80,000 soldiers and 40,000 servants and camp followers were killed near Arausio.

[67.3] Caepio, who had caused the defeat by his rashness, was convicted; his possessions were confiscated (for the first time since king Tarquinius) and his powers abrogated.

[67.4] [104] During the triumph of Gaius Marius, Jugurtha walked in front of the chariot with his two sons, and was killed in the jail. 

[67.5] Marius entered the Senate in triumphal dress, something no one had ever done before, and his consulship was prolonged out of fear of the Cimbrian war.

[67.6] He was away when he was elected for consul for the second and third time, and obtained a fourth consulship by pretending not to be aiming for it.

[67.7] The people chose Gnaeus Domitius as pontifex maximus.

[67.8] Having devastated everything between Rhône and Pyrenees, the Cimbrians moved through a mountain pass into Hispania, where they were - after having devastated many districts - routed by the Celtiberians. They returned to Gaul and joined the Teutons in the land of the Veliocassians.

From Book 68

[68.1] Praetor Marcus Antonius pursued the pirates to Cilicia.

[68.2] [102] Consul Gaius Marius defended his camp against a violent attack by the Teutons and Ambronians.

[68.3] After this, he defeated these enemies in two battles near Aquae Sextiae, in which - they say - 200,000 enemies were killed and 90,000 captured.

[68.4] [101] Although away from home, Marius was elected consul for the fifth time.

[68.5] He postponed the triumph offered to him until he had also defeated the Cimbrians.

[68.6] The Cimbrians, who had driven back and put to flight proconsul Quintus Catulus, who had wanted to block the passes in the Alps (near the river Adige he left a cohort that occupied a mountain castle; but by its own valour it broke away and followed the fleeing proconsul and his army), invaded Italy, [100] but were defeated in battle by the united forces of this Catulus and Gaius Marius; it is said that 160,000 enemies were killed and 60,000 captured.

[68.7] Although Marius, welcomed by the applause of the entire state, had been offered two triumphs, he was content with one.

[68.8] The first men in the state, who had until then envied the "new man" who had reached so many important posts, now admitted that the state had been rescued by him.

[68.9] Publicius Malleolus, who had killed his mother, was the first to be sewn into a sack and thrown into the sea.

[68.10] It is said that the sacred shields moved and rattled before the Cimbrian war was over.

[68.11] Itnote also contains an account of a war between the Syrian kings.note

From Book 69

[69.1] Using violence, Lucius Appuleius Saturninus, who had the support of Gaius Marius, and whose rival Aulus Nunnius had been killed by soldiers, was made tribune of the plebs, and occupied his tribuneship no less violently than he had tried to obtain it. When he had, using violence, passed a land bill, he accused Metellus Numidicus, who had not sworn to uphold this law.

[69.2] He was defended by the better citizens, but went into voluntary exile at Rhodes because he refused to be the cause of civil struggle. Here, he found distraction in reading and listening to great orators.

[69.3] When he had left, Gaius Marius, who was responsible for the riot and had bought a sixth consulship by distributing money to the voting districts, confirmed Metellus' exile.

[69.4] The same tribune Appuleius Saturninus assassinated Gaius Memmius, a candidate for the consulship whom he feared to be against him.

[69.5] Shocked by these crimes, the Senate, to whose side Gaius Marius (a man of constantly changing ideas and plans, always following fortune) had gone over, put Saturninus down, together with the praetor Glaucia and other allies who accompanied him in his madness, and had him killed in something like a battle.

[69.6] With the approval of the entire community, Quintus Caecilius Metellus was recalled from exile.

[69.7] Proconsul Manius Aquilius put an end to the war against the slaves that had originated in Sicily.

From Book 70

[70.1] When Manius Aquilius was accused of extortion, he refused to appeal to the jury, and Marcus Antonius, who had spoken for him, tore the tunic from his chest to show his honorable scars.

[70.2] Without further ado, he was acquitted.

[70.3] (Cicero is the only source for this case.)

[70.4] [97] Proconsul Titus Didius successfully fought against the Celtiberians.

[70.5] [96] After his death, king Ptolemy of Cyrene, surnamed Apion, made the Roman people his inheritor and the Senate decreed that all the towns in his kingdom were to be free.

[70.6] [95] Ariobarzanes was brought back to the kingdom of Cappadocia by Lucius Cornelius Sulla.

[70.7] Envoys of the Parthians, sent by the Arsacid king [Mithradates II], came to Sulla to ask for the friendship of the Roman people.

[70.8] [92] Because as deputy of governor Gaius Mucius he had defended Asia against the injustice of the publicans, Publius Rutilius, a man of supreme innocence, was hated by the equestrian order, which controlled the law courts and sent him into exile because of extortion.

[70.9] Praetor Gaius Sentius unsuccessfully fought against the Thracians.

[70.10] [91] The Senate, which refused to accept the control of the law courts by the equestrian order, started to try to transfer control to the Senate itself. It was supported by tribune Marcus Livius Drusus, who, to obtain more power, stirred up the people with the dangerous hope of a largesse.

[70.11] Itnote also contains an account of the troubles in the Syrian kingdom.