dum Rōmānī mīlitēs oppūgnāvērunt hostēs, L. Sulla quaestor vēnit cum magnō equitātū in casta. Sulla relictus erat Rōmae ut cōgeret equitātūs ex Latiō et ā sociīs. sed quoniam rēs admonuit nōs tantī virī, necesse est paucīs verbīs dīcere dē nātūrā cultūque Sullae.
Sulla fuit nōbilis gentis pātriciae, familiā prope iam extinctā maiōrum ignāviā. erat ērudītus litterīs Graecīs atque Latīnīs, animō ingentī, cupīdus voluptātum, sed cupīdior glōriae. in ōtiō, Sulla erat luxūriōsus, tamen voluptās numquam mōrāta est eum ab negōtiīs. Sulla erat , , et amīcitiā facilis. habet incrēdībilem mentem ad simulanda negōtia et erat pecūniae.
atque ante cīvīlem victōriam erat fēlīcīssimus omnium hominum sed numquam fortūna fuit super industriam. multī virī dubitāvērunt esset fortior an fēlīcior.
nam postea quae fēcerit, habeō incertum pudeat an pigeat magis dicere.
, dum , L. Sulla quaestor cum magnō vēnit, , Rōmae relictus erat. sed quoniam nōs tantī virī , dē nātūrā cultūque eius dīcere. neque enim aliō locō dē Sullae rēbus sumus et L. Sisenna, optimē et dīligentīssimē omnium, eās rēs dīxērunt, , mihi līberō ōre . igitur Sulla gentis pātriciae nōbilis fuit, , , , , sed glōriae cupīdior; , tamen . , et amīcitiā facilis, , multārum rērum ac maximē pecūniae . atque illī fēlīcīssimō omnium ante cīvīlem victōriam numquam industriam fortūna fuit, multīque dubitāvērunt, . , .
Operatives, you have already met the imperfect and pluperfect active subjunctives. There are two more tenses of the subjunctive, the present and the perfect. For this mission, we are going to look at both the present and perfect subjunctive. Study the following examples:
vīvāmus mea Lesbia atque amēmus.
Let us live my Lesbia and let us love.
Let the buyer beware.
Let us listen to the speeches.
Notice anything strange about the verbs in the sentences above other than their translations? Here is a hint operatives, look at the thematic vowels of the verbs. Ordinarily you might expect the thematic vowel of the verb amēmus be ā instead of ē because it is a first conjugation verb. Indeed, if amēmus were present indicative, then the thematic vowel would be ā, but because the verb is present subjunctive, the themati vowel changes to e. In fact, in each of the four conjugations, the thematic vowels will go through some sort of change in the present subjunctive. Study the thematic vowel changes:
|Present Indicative||Present Subjunctive|
|1st Conjugation||a → e||amat||amet|
|2nd Conjugation||e + a||habet||habeat|
|3rd Conjugation||i → a||dīcit||dīcat|
|4th Conjugation||i + a||audit||audiat|
Other than the stem vowel change, the personal endings for the present subjunctive are the same as the present indicative.
Here is a synopsis of verbs in each conjugation in the present subjunctive:
|1st Conjugation||2nd Conjugation||3rd Conjugation||4th Conjugation|
|1st person sg||amem||habeam||dīcam||audiam|
|2nd person sg||amēs||habeās||dīcās||audiās|
|3rd person sg||amet||habeat||dīcat||audiat|
|1st person pl||amēmus||habeāmus||dīcāmus||audiāmus|
|2nd person pl||amētis||habeātis||dīcātis||audiātis|
|3rd person pl||ament||habeant||dīcant||audiant|
Operatives, the present subjunctive is quite easy as long as you attune yourselves to the stem vowel changes of the four conjugations.
Fortunately the perfect active subjunctive is even more straightforward. It begins like its indicative counterpart -- with the perfect stem (the third principal part, minus the -ī.) From there, it is recognizeable by a simple set of endings. Consider the following chart:
amō, amāre, amāvī, amātus - to love
Operatives should attune themselves to recognizing both forms as a part of subjunctive clauses at their earliest convenience.
|cōnsōlātiō, cōnsōlātiōnis - f||consolation, comfort||noun|
|cōnsūmō, cōnsūmere, cōnsūmpsī, cōnsūmptus||to use up, eat, devour||verb|
|crīnis, crīnis - m||hair||noun|
|exercitus, exercitūs - m||army||noun|
|fūmō, fūmāre, fūmāvī, fūmātus||to smoke, steam||verb|
|iungō, iungere, iūnxī, iūnctus||to join together, unite||verb|
|melior, melius||better||adjective (comparative)|
|nūbēs, nūbis||cloud, mist||noun|
|Orientāls, Orientālis - m||the East, Easterner, one from the East; Oriental||noun|
|praebeō, praebēre, praebuī, praebitus||to reach out, offer||verb|
|prōmittō, prōmittere, prōmīsī, prōmissus||to promise||verb|
|superbus, superba, superbum||haughty, proud, arrogant||adjective|
|susurrō, susurrāre, susurrāvī, susurrātus||to hum, whisper||verb|
|terō, terere, trīvī, trītus||to rub, rub away, bruise||verb|
Operative, this training session has brought you to a hugely important moment in the struggle of the orders--the moment when Sulla finally asserts his dominant power to crush the populares. Remember that as far as the Demiurge can tell, the conflict over possession of the LAPIS SAECULORUM is a re-enactment of this struggle, and its antecedents and transformations.
We therefore think some research about Sulla is in order (here again is the basic info; and here is specific information on Sulla's second march on Rome), and Plutarch, although not the most reliable of historical sources, can at least give you an idea of what's at stake (the year is 82 BCE, and Sulla has reached Rome):
(28) In Sulla's last struggle, however, Telesinus the Samnite, like a third wrestler who sits by to contend with a weary victor, came near tripping and throwing him at the gates of Rome. For he had collected a large force, and was hastening, together with Lamponius the Lucanian, to Praeneste, in order to relieve Marius from the siege. But when he learned that Sulla to his front, and Pompey to his rear, were hurrying up against him, since he was being hemmed in before and behind, valiant and highly experienced soldier that he was, he broke camp by night, and marched with all his army against Rome itself. And he came within a little of breaking into the city in its unguarded state; indeed, he was only from the Colline gate when he against it, highly encouraged and elated with hopes at the thought of having outgeneralled so many great commanders. And when, at day-break, the noblest youth of the city rode out against him, he overwhelmed many of them, including Appius Claudius, a man of high birth and character. There was a tumult in the city, naturally, and shrieking of women, and running hither and thither, as though the city were taken by storm, when Balbus, sent forward by Sulla, was first seen riding up at full speed with seven hundred horsemen. He paused just long enough to let the sweat of the horses dry off, and then quickly bridled them again and attacked the enemy.
(29) At this juncture, Sulla also made his appearance, and ordering his vanguard to take food at once, proceeded to form them in order of battle. Dolabella and Torquatus earnestly besought him to wait a while, and not to hazard the supreme issue with his men fatigued and spent; for they were to contend not with Carbo and Marius, but with Samnites and Lucanians, the most inveterate enemies of Rome, and the most warlike of peoples. But he put them by, and commanded the trumpets to sound the charge, though it was now getting on towards four o'clock in the afternoon. In the struggle which followed, and no other was so fierce, the right wing, where Crassus was posted, was brilliantly successful; but the left was hard pressed and in a sorry plight, when Sulla came to its assistance, mounted on a white horse that was mettlesome and very swift. By this horse two of the enemy recognised him, and poised their spears for the cast. Sulla himself, now, did not notice this, but his groom did, and with a cut of the lash succeeded in sending Sulla's horse along so that the spear-heads just grazed its tail and fixed themselves in the ground. There is also a story that Sulla had a little golden image of Apollo from Delphi which he always carried in his bosom when he was in battle, but that on this occasion he took it out and kissed it affectionately, saying: "O Pythian Apollo, now that thou hast in so many struggles raised the fortunate Cornelius Sulla to glory and greatness, can it be that thou hast brought him to the gates of his native city only to cast him down there, to perish most shamefully with his fellow-countrymen?" Thus invoking the god, they say, he entreated some of his men, threatened others, and laid hands on others still; but at last his left wing was completely shattered, and with the fugitives he sought refuge in his camp, after losing many friends and acquaintances. Not a few also of those who had come out of the city to see the battle were trodden under foot and killed, so that it was thought that all was over with the city, and that the siege of Marius in Praeneste was all but raised; indeed many of the fugitives made their way thither and urged Lucretius Ofella, who had been appointed to conduct the siege, to break camp with all speed, since Sulla had fallen, and Rome was in the hands of the enemy.
(30) But when the night was now far advanced, messengers came to the camp of Sulla from Crassus, to fetch supper for him and his soldiers; for after conquering the enemy, he had pursued them into Antemnae, and was encamped before that city. When, therefore, Sulla learned this, and also that the greater part of the enemy had been destroyed, he came to Antemnae at break of day. There three thousand of the inhabitants sent a deputation to him to sue for mercy, and he promised them safety if they would do some mischief to the rest of his enemies before coming to him. So they, trusting to his promise, attacked the rest of the people in the city, and many were slain by one another's hands. However, the survivors of both parties alike, to the number of six thousand, were collected by Sulla in the circus at Rome, and then the senate was summoned by him to meet in the temple of Bellona, and at one and the same moment he himself began to speak in the senate, and those assigned to the task began to cut to pieces the six thousand in the circus. The shrieks of such a multitude, who were being massacred in a narrow space, filled the air, of course, and the senators were dumbfounded; but Sulla, with the calm and unmoved countenance with which he had begun to speak, ordered them to listen to his words and not concern themselves with what was going on outside, for it was only that some criminals were being admonished, by his orders. This gave even the dullest Roman to understand that, in the matter of tyranny, there had been an exchange, but not a deliverance. Marius the elder, at any rate, had been naturally harsh at the outset, and power had intensified, not altered, his disposition; but Sulla had used his good fortune moderately, at first, and like a statesman, and had led men to expect in him a leader who was attached to the aristocracy, and at the same time helpful to the common people. Furthermore, from his youth up he had been of a merry temper, and easily moved to tears of pity. Naturally, therefore, his conduct fixed a stigma upon offices of great power, which were thought to work a change in men's previous characters, and render them capricious, vain, and cruel. However, whether this is a change and reversal of nature, brought about by fortune, or rather a revelation, when a man is in authority, of underlying baseness, were matter for determination in some other treatise.
(31) Sulla now busied himself with slaughter, and murders without number or limit filled the city. Many, too, were killed to gratify private hatreds, although they had no relations with Sulla, but he gave his consent in order to gratify his adherents. At last one of the younger men, Caius Metellus, made bold to ask Sulla in the senate what end there was to be of these evils, and how far he would proceed before they might expect such doings to cease. "We do not ask thee," he said, "to free from punishment those whom thou hast determined to slay, but to free from suspense those whom thou hast determined to save." And when Sulla answered that he did not yet know whom he would spare, "Well, then," said Metellus in reply, "let us know whom thou intendest to punish." This Sulla said he would do. Some, however, say that it was not Metellus, but Fufidius, one of Sulla's fawning creatures, who made this last speech to him. Be that as it may, Sulla at once proscribed eighty persons, without communicating with any magistrate; and in spite of the general indignation, after a single day's interval, he proscribed two hundred and twenty others, and then on the third day, as many more. Referring to these measures in a public harangue, he said that he was proscribing as many as he could remember, and those who now escaped his memory, he would proscribe at a future time. He also proscribed any one who harboured and saved a proscribed person, making death the punishment for such humanity, without exception of brother, son, or parents, but offering any one who slew a proscribed person two talents as a reward for this murderous deed, even though a slave should slay his master, or a son his father. And what seemed the greatest injustice of all, he took away the civil rights from the sons and grandsons of those who had been proscribed, and confiscated the property of all. Moreover, proscriptions were made not only in Rome, but also in every city of Italy, and neither temple of God, nor hearth of hospitality, nor paternal home was free from the stain of bloodshed, but husbands were butchered in the embraces of their wedded wives, and sons in the arms of their mothers. Those who fell victims to political resentment and private hatred were as nothing compared with those who were butchered for the sake of their property, nay, even the executioners were prompted to say that his great house killed this man, his garden that man, his warm baths another. Quintus Aurelius, a quiet and inoffensive man, who thought his only share in the general calamity was to condole with others in their misfortunes, came into the forum and read the list of the proscribed, and finding his own name there, said, "Ah! woe is me! my Alban estate is prosecuting me." And he had not gone far before he was dispatched by some one who had hunted him down.
(32) Meanwhile Marius the younger, at the point of being captured, slew himself; and Sulla, coming to Praeneste, at first gave each man there a separate trial before he executed him, but afterwards, since time failed him, gathered them all together in one place — there were twelve thousand of them — and gave orders to slaughter them, his host alone receiving immunity. But this man, with a noble spirit, told Sulla that he would never owe his safety to the slayer of his country, and joining his countrymen of his own accord, was cut down with them. But that which Lucius Catiline did was thought to be most monstrous of all. This man, namely, had killed his brother before the civil struggle was decided, and now asked Sulla to proscribe the man, as one still living; and he was proscribed. Then Catiline, returning this favour of Sulla's, killed a certain Marcus Marius, one of the opposite faction, and brought his head to Sulla as he was sitting in the forum, and then going to the lustral water of Apollo which was near, washed the blood off his hands.
(33) But besides his massacres, the rest of Sulla's proceedings also gave offence. For he proclaimed himself dictator, reviving this particular office after a lapse of a hundred and twenty years. Moreover, an act was passed granting him immunity for all his past acts, and for the future, power of life and death, of confiscation, of colonization, of founding or demolishing cities, and of taking away or bestowing kingdoms at his pleasure. He conducted the sales of confiscated estates in such arrogant and imperious fashion, from the tribunal where he sat, that his gifts excited more odium than his robberies. He bestowed on handsome women, musicians, comic actors, and the lowest of freedmen, the territories of nations and the revenues of cities, and women were married against their will to some of his favourites. In the case of Pompey the Great, at least, wishing to establish relationship with him, he ordered him to divorce the wife he had, and then gave him in marriage Aemilia, daughter of Scaurus and his own wife Metella, whom he tore away from Manius Glabrio when she was with child by him; and the young woman died in childbirth at the house of Pompey.
(34) Lucretius Ofella, who had reduced Marius by siege, gave himself out as a candidate for the consulship, and Sulla at first tried to stop him; but when Ofella came down into the forum with a large and eager following, he sent one of the centurions in his retinue and slew him, himself sitting on a tribunal in the temple of Castor and beholding the murder from above. The people in the forum seized the centurion and brought him before the tribunal, but Sulla bade them cease their clamour, and said that he himself had ordered this deed, and commanded them to let the centurion go. His triumph, however, which was imposing from the costliness and rarity of the royal spoils, had a greater ornament in the noble spectacle of the exiles. For the most distinguished and influential of the citizens, crowned with garlands, followed in the procession, calling Sulla their saviour and father, since indeed it was through him that they were returning to their native city and bringing with them their wives and children. And when at last the whole spectacle was over, he gave an account of his achievements in a speech to the people, enumerating the instances of his good fortune with no less emphasis than his deeds of valour, and finally, in view of these, he ordered that he receive the surname of Fortunate (for this is what the word "Felix" most nearly means).
CULTURALIA Comprehension Questions
Directions: Using the CULTURALIA section of your CODEX as a guide, answer the following questions:
1. From what family does Sulla come?
2. Name two of Sulla's military successes.
dē civile bellō secundō Sullae
1. What actions did Marius take when Sulla was fighting the First Mithridatic War?
2. After the defeat of Mithridates and the death of Cinna, who joined Sulla's cause and why were they significant?
3. Describe the events of the Battle of Mount Tifata and its aftermath.
4. What did Carbo and Gaius Marius the Younger do to allow Sulla to march on Rome?
5. Sulla's march on Rome was a small part of this civil war. Name three other battles and their outcomes after Sulla marched on Rome.
6. What happened to those people Sulla conquered (including Marius the younger) and what was awarded to Sulla?
1. How does Plutarch portray Sulla as a victor? Favorably? Unfavorably? Someone who follows/does not follow Roman virtues?