The Ancient Library

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provinces, was that he cancelled an enormous sum due to the state as taxes, viz. all the arrears of the last 15 years, and to remove all fears from the minds of the people, he had the documents publicly burnt in the forum of Trajan. He further endea­voured to secure his government by winning the good will of the senate; he not only denied the charge brought against him respecting the four consulars, but swore that he would never punish a senator except with the sanction of the senate ; and the senate was, in fact, made to believe that it had never been in the enjoyment of such extensive and unlimited powers as now. At the same time, how­ever, he found it necessary to remove his former friends Attianus and Similis from their office of praefects of the praetorians, and to appoint Marcius Turbo and Septicius Clarus their successors.

The war against the Sarmatians was continued in the meantime by Hadrian's legates, and lasted for several years, if we may believe the chronicle of Eusebius, which mentions it as still going on in A. d. 120. In the year A. D. 119 Hadrian began his memorable journey through the provinces of his empire, many portions of which he traversed on foot. His desire to promote the good of the empire by convincing himself every where personally of the state of affairs, and by applying the necessary remedies wherever mismanagement was discovered, was unquestionably one of the motives that led him to this singular undertaking; but there can be little doubt that the restlessness of his mind and the extraordinary curiosity which stimulated him to go and see himself every thing of which he had heard or read, had as great a share in determining him thus to travel through his vast empire, as his desire to do good. These travels occupy the greater part of his reign ; but the scanty accounts we have of them do not enable us to follow them step by step, or even to arrange them in a satisfactory chronological order. In a. d, 119 he left Rome and first went to Gaul, where he displayed great liberality in satisfying the wants of the provincials. From Gaul he proceeded to Germany, where he devoted most of his attention to the armies on the frontier. , Although he was more desirous to main­tain peace than to carry on war, he trained the soldiers always as though a great war had been near at hand ; and the excellent condition of his troops, combined with the justice he displayed in his foreign policy, and the sums of money he paid to barbarian chiefs, were the principal means of keeping the enemies away from the Roman pro­vinces. The limes in Germany was fortified, and several towns and colonies were greatly benefited by him. From Germany he crossed over into Britain, where he introduced many improvements in the administration, and constructed the famous wall dividing the Roman province from and protect­ing it against the barbarous tribes of the north ; it extended from the Solway to the mouth of the river Tyne, a distance of 80,000 feet, and traces of it are to be seen even at the present day. From Britain Hadrian returned to Gaul, and constructed a magnificent basilica at Nemausus (Nismes), in honour of his wife, Sabina, although during his absence in Britain, her conduct was such that he is reported to have said he would divorce her if he lived in a private. station. After this he went to Spain, where he spent the winter, probably of a. d. 121 and 122, and held a conventus of all the Romans residing in Spain. In the spring of 122



he crossed over to Africa, where he suppressed an insurrection in Mauritania, and then travelled through Egypt into Asia. A war with the Par- thians was on the eve of breaking out, but Hadrian averted it by an interview which he had with their king. He next travelled through the provinces of Western Asia, probably during the early part of A. d. 123, visited the islands of the Aegean, and then went to Achaia, where he took up his re­ sidence at Athens. It would seem that he stayed there for three years, till a.d. 126. Athens was his favourite place, and was honoured by him above all the other cities'of the empire : he gave to the people of Athens new laws, and showed his reverence for their institutions by being initiated in the Eleusi- nian mysteries, by acting the part of agonothetes at their public games, and by allowing himself to be made archon eponymus. From Athens he re­ turned to Rome by way of Sicily, either in a.d. 126 or 127. He was saluted at Rome as pater patriae, and his wife distinguished by the title of Augusta. The next few years he remained at Rome, with only one interruption, during which he visited Africa. He seems to have chiefly employed his time at Rome in endeavouring to introduce the Greek institutions and modes of worship, for which he had conceived a great admiration at Athens. It seems to have been about a. i). 129 that Hadrian set out on his second journey to the east. He travelled by way of Athens, where he stayed for some time to see the completion of the numerous buildings which he had commenced during his previous visit, especially to dedicate the temple of the Olympian Zeus, and an altar to him­ self. In Asia he conciliated the various princes in the most amicable and liberal manner, so that those who did not accept his invitation had afterwards themselves most reason to regret it. He sent back to Cosrhoes a daughter who had been taken pri* soner by Trajan; and the governors and procura- tores in the provinces were punished severely wherever they were found unjust or wanting in the discharge of their duties. From Asia Minor he proceeded through Syria and Arabia into Egypt, where he restored the tomb of Pompey with great splendour. During an excursion on the Nile he lost his favourite, Antinous [antinous], for whom he entertained an unnatural affection, and whose death was to him the cause of deep and lasting grief. From Egypt, Hadrian returned, through Syria, to Rome, where he must have spent the latter part of the year a. d. 131, and the first of 132, for in the former year he built the temple of Venus and Roma, and i the latter he promulgated the edidum perpefaium. . Not long after his return to Rome the Jewish war broke out, the only one that disturbed the peace of his long reign. The causes of this war were the establishment of a colony under the name of Aelia Capitolina on the site of Jerusalem, and an order issued by Hadrian forbidding the Jews the rite of circumcision. The war was carried on by the Jews as a national struggle with the most desperate fury; it lasted for several years, and it was not till the general Julius Severus came over from Britain, that the Romans gradually succeeded in paralysing or annihilating the Jews ; and the country was nearly reduced to a wilderness when peace was restored. The Jews were hence­ forth not allowed to reside at Jerusalem and its immediate vicinity; and from this time they:


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