Scanned text contains errors.
into a fire winch was already lighted for a sacrifice, and held it there without flinching. The king, who was amazed at his firmness, ordered him to be removed from the altar, and bade him go away, free and uninjured. To make some return to the king for his generous behaviour, Mucius told him that there were three hundred of the first youths of Rome who had agreed with one another to kill the king, that the lot fell on him to make the first attempt, and that the rest would do the same when their turn came.
Mucius received the name of Scaevola, or left-handed, from the circumstance of the loss of his right hand. Porsenna being alarmed for his life, Avhich he could not secure against so many desperate men, made proposals of peace to the Romans, and evacuated the territory. The patricians or the senate, for it is impossible to say which body Livy means (ii. 13, comp. ii. 12), gave Mucius a tract of land beyond the Tiber, which was thenceforward called Mucia Praia. Such is the substance of Livy's story. Dionysius tells it with tedious prolixity, as usual ; but he omits all mention of the king's threat to burn Mucius, and of Mucius burning his right hand. (See Niebuhr's Remarks on the story of C. Mucius Scaevola, Lectures^ " Earliest Times to the First Punic War" 1848 ; and Niebuhr, Roman Hist. vol. i., " The War with Porsenna"
The Mucius of this story is called a patrician ; and the Mucii of the historical period were plebeians. This is urged as an objection to assuming the descent of the historical Mucii from the Mucius of b.c. 509. But independent of this minor difficulty, we do not concern ourselves about the descent of the illustrious Mucii of the later Republic from the half-fabulous man with the left hand who assisted at its birth.
The following appear to be the only Mucii of whom any thing worth knowing is recorded.
2. Q. Mucius scaevola, the son of Publius, was praetor in b. c. 215, in the consulship of C. Postumius Albimis III. and T. Sempronius Gracchus: he had Sardinia for his province (Liv. xxiii. 24, 30), where he fell sick (c. 34, 40). His command in Sardinia was prolonged for the t\vo following years (Liv. xxiv. 9, 44), and again for another year (Liv. xxv. 3) : nothing is recorded of his operations. This appears to be the Mucius who is mentioned by Pomponius (Dig. 1. tit. 2. s. 2. § 37), if Mucius is the right reading there (comp. Liv. xxi. 18 ; Gellius, x. 27 ; Florus, ii. 6). Quintus was decemvir sacrorum, and died in b. c. 209. (Liv. xxvii. 8.)
3. Q. Mucius scaevola, probably the son of No. 2, was praetor in b.c. 179, and had Sicily for his province (Liv. xl. 44). He was consul in b. c. 174, with Sp. Postumius Albinus for his colleague. Scaevola accompanied the consul P. Lici-nius Crassus, as tribunus militum, in b.c. 171, when the consul went against Perseus, king of Macedonia. (Liv. xlii. 49, and 67.)
4. P. Mucius scaevola, the son of Quintus, was elected a praetor, with his brother Quintus, b. c. 179. (Liv. xl. 44). Publius had the urbana provincia, and the quaestio de veneficiis in the city, and within ten miles of the city. He \vas
consul in b. c. 175, with Aemilius Lepklus II. Publius had the Ligures for his province (Liv. xli. 19). He fought a battle with some tribes which had ravaged Luna and Pisae, gained a victory, and was honoured with a triumph, which is recorded in a fragment of the Capitoline marbles, where he is named [P. Mu] Q. F. P. N. (Clinton, Fasti, b.c. 175.)
5. P. Mucius scaevola, was probably the son of P. Mucius Scaevola [No. 3J. Publius Mucius, Manilius,and Brutus,are called by Pomponius (Dig. 1. tit. 2. s. 2. § 9) the founders of the Jus Civile. Publius was tribunus plebis, b.c. 141, in which year he brought L. Hostilius Tubulus to trial for mal-administration as praetor (Rein, Criminal-recht der Romer, p. 602): he was praetor urbanus in b. c. 136. In b. c. 133, Publius was consul with L. Calpurnius Piso Frugi, the year in which Tib. Gracchus lost his life. In b. c. 131, he succeeded his brother Mucianus [MuciANUs] as Pontifex Maximus. Plutarch (Tib. Gracchus, c. 9) says, that Tib. Gracchus consulted P. Scaevola about the provisions of his Agrarian Law. When Tiberius was a candidate for a second tri-buneship, and the opposite faction had resolved to put him down, Scipio Nasica in the senate " entreated the consul (Mucius) to protect the state, and put down the tyrant. The consul, however, answered mildly, that he would not be the first to use violence, and that he would not take any citizen's life without a regular trial: if, however, he said, the people should come to an illegal vote at the instigation of Tiberius, or from compulsion, he would not respect any such decision." The colleague of Mucius was absent in Sicily, where he was conducting the war against the slaves. After the death of Tib. Gracchus, Scaevola is said to have approved of the conduct of Scipio Nasica, who was the chief mover in the aifray in which Tiberius lost his life (Cic. pro Cn. Plancio, c.'36) ; and even to have declared his approbation by moving or drawing up various Senatusconsulta (Cic. pro Dom. c. 34). Scaevola must have lived till after the death of C. Gracchus, b. c. 121, for he gave his opinion that as the res dotales of Licinia, the wife of C. Gracchus, had been lost in the disturbance caused by her husband, they ought to be made good to her. (Dig. 24. tit. 3. s. 66.)
Cicero (de Or. ii. 12) states that from the earliest period of Roman history to the time of P. Mucius Pontifex Maximus, it was the custom for the Pontifex Maximus to put in writing on a tablet all the events of each year, and to expose it at his house for public inspection : these, he says, are now called the Annales Maximi. Mucius was distinguished for his knowledge of the Jus Pontifi-cium; and he was also famed for his skill in playing at ball, as well as at the game called Duodecim Scripta. (Cic. de Or.i. 50 ; see Scriptum, Faccio-lati, Lex.) The passage of Cicero shows that Valerius Maximus (viii. 8, 2) means P. Mucius Scaevola, the Pontifex Maximus, when he is speaking of the relaxations of Scaevola from his severe labours. Quintilian (Inst. Or. xi. 2) in speaking of the same thing, gives an anecdote of the strong memory of Scaevola.
He expressed (Cic. Brut. c. 28) himself well but rather diffusely. His fame as a lawyer is recorded by Cicero in several passages (de Or. i. 56) ; and Cicero twice quotes his words (Top. c. 4, 6). The latter of the two passages in the