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On this page: Beryllus – Berytius – Besantinus – Bessus – Bestes – Bestia

BESSUS.

thesis, for Justin may have confounded the well-known historian with some earlier Babylonian of the name of Berosus; or, what is more probable, the Sibyl whom he mentions is a recent one, and may really have been the daughter of the historian. ( Paus. I. c.) [SiBYLLAE.] Other writers again have been inclined to assume, that Berosus the historian was a different person from the astrologer ; but this , opinion too is not supported by satisfactory evi­dence.

The work entitled Berosi Antiquitatum libri quinque cum Commentariis Joannis Annii^ which appeared at Rome in 1498, fol., and was afterwards often reprinted and even translated into Italian, is one of the many fabrications of Giovanni Nanni, a Dominican monk of Viterbo, better known under the name of Annius of Viterbo, who died in 1502. (Fabric. Bibl. Graec. iv. p. 163, &c.; Vossius, De Hist. Graec. p. 120, &c., ed. Westermann ; and Eichter's Introduction to his edition of the Frag­ ments.) [L. S.]

BERYLLUS (BepuAAos), bishop of Bostra in Arabia, a. d. 230, maintained that the Son of God had no distinct personal existence before the birth of Christ, and that Christ was only divine as hav­ing the divinity of the Father residing in him, communicated to him at his birth as a ray or emanation from the Father. At a council held at Bostra (a. d. 244) he was convinced by Origen of the error of his doctrine, and returned to the Catholic faith, He wrote Hymns, Poems, and Letters, several' of the latter to Origen, thanking him for having reclaimed him. A work was ex­tant in the time of Eusebius and of Jerome, in which was an account of the questions discussed between Beryllus and Origen. None of his works are extant. (Euseb. H. E. vi. 20, 33 ; Hieron. de Vir. Itlustr. c. 60 ; Socrates, H. E. iii. 7.) [P. S.]

BERYTIUS, a surname given to several writers from their being natives of Berytus. See anato-Liris, hermippus, lupercus, taurus.

BESANTINUS (B-nffavrivos). The Vatican MS. of the Greek Anthology attributes to an author of this name two epigrams, of which one is also ascribed to Pallas (Anal. ii. p. 435, No. 134; Ja­cobs, iii. p. 142), and the other (Jacobs, Paral. ex Cod. Vat. 42, xiii. p. 651) is included among the epigrams of Theognis. (Vv. 527, 528,Bekk.) This latter epigram is quoted by Stobaeus as of " Theog­nis or Besantinus." (Tit. cxvi. 11.) The " Egg" of Simmias (Anal. i. p. 207, Jacobs, i. p. 140) bears the following title in the Vatican MS.: Bfiffavrivov >ov t) Auiffidda rj ^tju/j.iov., dutyorepoi yoLp Hence we may infer that Besantinus was a Rhodian.

An author of this name is repeatedly quoted in the Etymologicum Magnum (pp. 608,1. 57, 685, 1. 56, Sylb.), whom Fabricius (Bibl. Graec. x. 772) rightly identifies with the Helladius Besantinus of Photius. [helladius.] The name is also spelt Bisantinus. (Biaavrivos., Etym. Mag. p. 212. 49; Fabric. Bibl. Graec. iv. p. 467.) [P. S.]

BESSUS (B7](rcros), was satrap of Bactria in 1ne time of Dareius III. (Codonmnnus), who saw reason to suspect him of treachery soon after the battle of Issus, and summoned him accordingly from his satrapy to Babylon, where he was col­lecting forces for the continuance of the war. (Curt. iv. 6. § 1.) At the battle of Arbela, b. c. '381, Bessus commanded the left wing of the Per­sian army, and was thus directly opposed to Alex-

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BESTIA.

ander himself. (Curt. iv. 12. § 6 ; Arr. Anab. iii. p. 59, e.) After this battle, when the fortunes of Dareius seemed hopelessly ruined, Bessus formed a plot with Nabarzanes and others to seize the king, and either to put him to death and make themselves masters of the empire, or to deliver him up to Alexander, according to circumstances. Soon after the flight of Dareius from Ecbatana (where, after the battle of Arbela, he had taken, refuge), the conspirators, who had the Bactrian troops at their command, succeeded in possessing themselves of the king's person, and placed him in chains. But, being closely pressed in pursuit by Alexander, and having in vain urged Dareius to mount a horse and continue his flight with them, they filled up by his murder the measure of their treason, b. c. 330. (Curt. v. 9—13; Arr. Anab. iii. pp. 68, 69 ; Diod. xvii. 73-; Pint. Aleoa. 42.) After this deed Bessus fled into Bactria, where he collected a considerable force, and assumed the name and insignia of royalty, v/ith the title of Artaxerxes. (Curt. vi. 6. § 13 ; Arr. Anab. iii. p. 71, d.) On the approach of Alexander, he fled from him beyond the Oxus, but was at length be­trayed by two of his followers, and fell into the hands of Ptolemy, whom Alexander had sent for­ward to receive him. (Curt. vii. 5 ; Arr. Anab. iii. p. 75 ; coinp. Strab. xi. p. 513.) He was brought naked before the conqueror, and, having been scourged, was sent to Zariaspa, the capital of Bactria (Strab. xi. p. 514); here, a council being

afterwards held upon him, he was sentenced to suffer mutilation of his nose and ears, and was de­ livered for execution to Oxathres, the brother of Dareius, who put him to a cruel death. The mode of it is variously related, and Plutarch even makes Alexander himself the author of the shocking barbarity which he describes. (Curt. vii. 5, 10; Arr. Anab. iv. p. 82, d. ; Ptolem. and Aristobul. ap. A rr. Anab. iii. ad fin. ; Diod. xvii. 83 ; Plut. Aleoc. 43; Just. xii. 5.) [E. E,]

BESTES (Be<mfc), perhaps Vestes, surnamed Conostaulus, a Greek interpreter of the Novells., filled the office of judex veli, and probably lived soon after the age of Justinian. He is cited by Harmenopulus (Promptuarium^ p. 426, ed. 1587), and mentioned by Nic. Comnenus Papadopoli. (Praenotat. Mystagog. p. 372.) [J. T. G.J

BESTIA, the name of a family of the plebeian Calpurnia gens.

1. L. calpurnius bestia, tribune of the plebs, b. c. 121, obtained in his tribuneship the recall of P. Popillius Laenas, who had been banished through the efforts of C. Gracchus in 123. (Cic. Brut. 34 ; comp. Veil. Pat. ii. 7 ; Pint. C. Gracch. 4.) This made him popular with the aristocratical party, who then had the chief power in the state; and it was through their influence doubtless that he obtained the consulship in 111. The war against Jugurtha was assigned to him. He prosecuted it at first with the greatest vigour ; but when Jugurtha offered him and his legate, M. Scaurus, large sums of money, he concluded a peace with the Numidian without consulting the senate, and returned to Rome to hold the comitia. His conduct excited the greatest indignation at Rome, and the aristocracy was obliged to yield to the wishes of the people, and allow an investigation into the whole matter. A bill was introduced for the purpose by C. Mamilius Lime tan us, and three commissioners or judges (quaesiiores) appointed, on©

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