The Historical Annals of Cornelius Tacitus: With Supplements, Volume 3

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Page 139 - They were put to death with exquisite cruelty, and to their sufferings Nero added mockery and derision. Some were covered with the skins of wild beasts, and left to be devoured by dogs; others were nailed to the cross; numbers were burnt alive; and many, covered over with inflammable matter, were lighted up, when the day declined, to serve as torches during the night (e).
Page 138 - Nero proceeded with his usual artifice. He found a set of profligate and abandoned wretches, who were induced to confess themselves guilty, and, on the evidence of such men, a number of Christians were convicted, not indeed, upon clear evidence of their having set the city on fire, but rather on account of their sullen hatred of the whole human race.
Page 138 - Tie infamy of that horrible transaction still adhered to him. In order, if possible, to remove the imputation, he determined to transfer the guilt to others. For this purpose he punished, with exquisite torture, a race of men detested for their evil practices, by vulgar appellation commonly called Christians.
Page 138 - By that event the sect of which he was the founder received a blow which for a time checked the growth of a dangerous superstition ; but it revived soon after, and spread with recruited vigor, not only in Judea, the soil that gave it birth, but even in the city of Rome, the common sink into which everything infamous and abominable flows like a torrent from all quarters of the world.
Page 83 - Britons betook themselves to flight, but their waggons in the rear obstructed their passage. A dreadful slaughter followed. Neither sex nor age was spared. The cattle, falling in one promiscuous carnage, added to the heaps of slain. The glory of the day was equal to the most splendid victory of ancient times. According to some writers, not less than eighty thousand Britons were put to the sword.
Page 82 - ... they are dastards, runaways, the refuse of your swords, who have often fled before you, and will again betake themselves to flight when they see the conqueror flaming in the ranks of war. In all engagements it is the valour of a few that turns the fortune of the day. It will be your immortal glory, that with a scanty number you can equal the exploits of a great and powerful army. Keep your ranks; discharge your javelins ; rush forward to a close attack ; bear down all with your bucklers, and...
Page 39 - By what system of ethicks has this professor, in less than four years, amassed three hundred million sesterces ? His snares are spread through all the city ; last wills and testaments are his quarry, and the rich, who have no children, are his prey. Italy is overwhelmed, the provinces are exhausted; and he is still unsatisfied !
Page 133 - A dreadful calamity followed in a short time after, by some ascribed to chance, and by others to the execrable wickedness of Nero. The authority of historians is on both sides, and which preponderates it is not easy to determine. It is, however, certain, that of all the disasters that ever befell the city of Rome from the rage of fire, this was the worst, the most violent, and destructive. The flame broke out in that part of the circus which adjoins, on one side, to Mount Palatine, and, on the other,...
Page 136 - Bold and original in their project*, these men undertook to conquer nature, and to perform wonders even beyond the imagination and the riches of the prince. They promised to form a navigable canal from the lake Avernus to the mouth of the Tiber. The experiment, like- the genius of the men, was bold and grand; but it was to be carried over a long tract of barren land, and, in some places, through opposing mountains.
Page 133 - Rome, contributed to increase the mischief. The shrieks and lamentations of women, the infirmities of age, and the weakness of the young and tender, added misery to the dreadful scene. Some endeavoured to provide for themselves, others to save their friends, in one part dragging along the lame and impotent, in another waiting to receive the tardy, or expecting relief themselves; they hurried, they lingered, they obstructed one another; they looked behind, and the fire broke out in front; they escaped...

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