صور الصفحة

which lasted till the time of Justinian, under whom the country was recovered for the Eastern Empire, and the Vandals almost exterminated, by Belisarius, A. D. 533—534. (For an account of the Vandal kings of Africa, see Vandali: for the history of this period, the chief authority is Procopius, Bell.Vand.)

Of the state and constitution of Africa under Justinian, we have most interesting memorials in two rescripts, addressed by the emperor, the one to Archelaus, the praetorian praefect of Africa, and the other to Belisarius himself. (Booking, Notit. Dign. vol. ii. pp. 154, foil.) From the former we learn that the seven African provinces, of which the island of Sardinia now made one, were erected into a separate praefecture, under a Praefectm Praetorio Magnijicus; and the two rescripts settle their civil and military constitution respectively. It should be observed that Mauretania Tingitana (from the river Mulncha to the Ocean), which had formerly belonged to Spain, was now included in the African province of Mauretania Caesariensis. [Comp. MauRktakia.] The seven African provinces were (from E. toW.), (1) Tripolis or Tripolitana, (2) Byzacium or Byzacena, (3) Africa or Zeugis or Carthago, (4) Numidia, (5) Mauretania Sitifensis or Zaba, (6) Mauretania Caesariensis, and (7) Sardinia: the first three were governed by Consulares, the last four by Praesides.

The history of Africa under the E. empire consists of a series of intestine troubles arising from court intrigues, and of Moorish insurrections which became more and more difficult to repel. The splendid edifices and fortifications, of which Justinian was peculiarly lavish in this part of his dominions, were a poor substitute for the vital energy which was almost extinct. (PTocoy.deAedif. Justin.) At length the deluge of Arabian invasion swept over the choicest parts of the Eastern Empire, and the conquest of Egypt was no sooner completed, than the Caliph Othman sent an army under Abdallah against Africa, A. D. 647. The praefect Gregory was defeated and slain in the great battle of Sufetnla in the centre of Byzacena; but the Arab force was inadequate to complete the conquest In 665 the enterprise was renewed by Akbah, who overran the whole country to the shores of the Atlantic; and founded the great Arab city of Al-Kairwan (i. e. the caravan), in the heart of Byzacium, about 20 miles S. W. of the ancient Hadrametum. Its inland position protected it from the fleets of the Greeks, who were still masters of the coast. But the Moorish tribes made common cause with the Africans, and the forces of Akbah were cut to pieces. His successor, Zuheir, gained several battles, but was defeated by an army sent from Constantinople. The contest was prolonged by the internal dissensions of the successors of the prophet; but, in A. D. 692, a new force entered Africa under Hassan, the governor of Egypt, and Carthage was taken and destroyed in 698. Again were the Arabs driven out by a general insurrection of the Moors, or, as we now find them called, by the name ever since applied to the natives of N. Africa, the Berbers (from 0dpSafioi); but the Greeks and Romans of Africa found their domination more intolerable than that of the Arabs, and welcomed the return of their conquerors under Musa, who subdued the country finally, and enlisted most of the Moors under the faith and standard of the prophet, A. D. 705—709. With the Arab conquest ends the ancient history of Africa. [P. S.]

AGANIPPE FONS. [hbuook.]

A'GARI Catoooi), a Scythian people of Sarm.it i» Europaea, on the N. shore of the Pains Maeotis (& a of Azov), about a promontory Agarum and a river Agarus, probably not far E. of the Isthmus. They were skilful in medicine, and are said to have cured wounds with serpents' venom 1 Some of them always attended on Mithridates the Great, as physicians. (Appian.ifitAr 88; Ptol. iii. 5. § 13.) A fungus called Agaricum (prob. German tinder), much used in ancient medicine, was said to grow in their country (Plin. xxv. 9. s. 57; Dioscor. iii. 1; Galen, defac, simp. med. p. 150). Diodorus (zx. 24), mentions Agarus, a king of the Scythians, near the Cimmerian Bosporus, B. c. 240. (Bockh, Corpus Inter, vol. ii. p. 82; Ukert, voL iii. pt. 2, pp. 250, 433.) [P. S.j

AGASSA or AGASSAE, a town in Pieria in Macedonia, near the river Mitys. Livy, in relating the campaign of B. C. 169 against Perseus, says that the Roman consul made three days' march beyond Dium, the first of which terminated at the river Mitys, the second at Agassa, and the third at the river Ascordns. The last appears to be the same as the Acerdos, which occurs in the Tabular Itinerary, though not marked as a river. Leake supposes that the Mitys was the river of Kattrina, and that Acerdos was a tributary of the Haliacmon. (Liv. xliv. 7, xlv. 27; Leake, Northern Greece, vol. iii. p. 423, seq.)

AGATHUSA. [telos.]

AGATHYKNA or AGATHYENUM CAyiBvpm, Polyb. ap. Steph.Byz.A7a&ff»'o!',Ptol.: Agathyrna, Sil. ItaL xiv.259; Liv.; Agathyrnnm, Plin.), a city on the N. coast of Sicily between Tyndaris and Calacte. It was supposed to have derived its name from Agathymus, a son of Aeolus, who is said to have settled in this part of Sicily (Diod. v. 8). But though it may be inferred from hence that it was an ancient city, and probably of Sicelian origin, we find no mention of it in history until after Sicily became a Roman province. During the Second Punic War it became the head-quarters of a band of robbers and freebooters, who extended their ravages over the neighbouring country, but were reduced by the consul Laevinus in B. c. 210, who transported 4000 of them to Rhegium. (Liv. xxvL 40, xxvii. 12.) It very probably was deprived on this occasion of the municipal rights conceded to most of the Sicilian towns, which may account for our finding no notice of it in Cicero, though it is mentioned by Strabo among the few cities still subsisting on the N. coast of Sicily, as well as afterwards by Pliny, Ptolemy and the Itineraries. (Strab. vi. p. 266; Plin. iii. 8; Ptol. iii. 4. § 2; Itin. Ant. p. 92; Tab. Pent.) Its situation has been much disputed, on account of the great discrepancy between the authorities just cited. Strabo places it 30 Roman miles from Tyndaris, and the same distance from Alaesa. The Itinerary gives 28 M. P. from Tyndaris and 20 from Calacte: while the Tabula (of which the numbers seem to be more trustworthy for this part of Sicily than those of the Itinerary) gives 29 from Tyndaris, and only 12 from Calacte. If this last measurement be supposed correct it would exactly coincide with the distance from Caronia (Calacte) to a place near the seacoast called Acque Dolci below S. Filadelfo (called on recent maps & FrateUo) and about 2 miles W. of Sta Agata, where Fazcllo describes ruins of considerable magnitude as extant in his day: but which he, in common with Cluvcrius, regarded as the remains of Aluntium. The latter city may, however, be placed with much more probability at S. Marco [aluhtium]: and the rains near 5. FrateUo would Urns be those of Agathyma, there being Do other city of any magnitude that we know of in this part of Sicily. Two objections, however, remain: 1. that the distance from this site to Tyndaris is greater than that given by any of the authorities, being certainly not less than 36 miles: 2. that both Pliny and Ptolemy, from the order of their enumeration, appear to place Agathyma between Aluntium and Tyndaris, and therefore if the former city be correctly fixed at & Marco, Agathyma must be looked for to the E. of that town. Fazello accordingly placed it near Capo Orlando, but admits that there were scarcely any vestiges visible there. The question is one hardly susceptible of a satisfactory conclusion, as it is impossible on any view to reconcile the data of all our authorities, but the arguments in favour of the Acque Doki seem on the whole to predominate. Unfortu ■ nately the ruins there have not been examined by any recent traveller, and have very probably disappeared. Captain Smyth, however, speaks of the remains of a fine Roman bridge as visible in the f'iumara di Rota Marina between this place and S. Marco. (Fazell. far. 4, p. 384, 5. p. 391; Clnver. SciL p. 295; Smyth's Sicily, p. 97.) [E. H. B.] AGATHYRSI ('A-yd%>o-oi, 'Ayaeiptrioi), a people of Sarmatia Europaea, very frequently mentioned by the ancient writers, but in different positions. Their name was known to the Greeks very early, if the Peisander, from whom Suidas («. v.) and Stephanas Byzantinus (*, t>.) quote an absurd mvthical etymology of the name (Avo T£» Svpaitr Tov AuWrov) be the poet Peisander of Rhodes, B. c. 645; bat he is much more probably the younger Peisander of Larauda, A.d. 222. Another myth is repeated by Herodotus, who heard it from the Greeks on the Euxine; that Hercules, on his return from his adventure against Geryon, passed through the region of Hylaea, and there met the Echidna, who bore him three sons, Agathyrsus, Gelonus. and Scythes; of whom the last alone was able to bend a bow and to wear a belt, which Hercules had left behind, in the same manner as Hercules himself had used them; and, accordingly, in obedience to their father's command, the Echidna drove the two elder out of the land, and gave it to Scythes (Herod, iv. 7—10: comp. tzetz. Chil. viii. 222, 759). Herodotus himself, also, regards the Am thyrsi as not a Scythian people, but as closely mated to the Scythians. He places them about the upper course of the river Maris (MarotcK), that is. in the SE. part of Dacia, or the modern Trannkania (iv. 4: the Maris, however, does not fall directly, as he states, into the Ister, Danube, but into that great tributary of the Danube, the Theitt). They were the first of the peoples bordering on Scythia, to one going inland from the Ister; and next to them the Neuri (iv. 100). Being thus separated by the E. Carpathian mountains from Scythia, they were able to refuse the Scythians, firing before Dareios, an entrance into their country (Herod, iv. 125). How far N. they extended cannot be determined from Herodotus, for he assigns an erroneous course to the Ister, N. of which he considers the land to be quite desert. [scythia.] The later writers, for the most part, place the Agathyrei further to the K., as is the case with nearly all the Scythian tribes; some place them on the Palus Mac«isand some inland; and they are generally spoken

of in close connection with the Sarmatians and tl.e Geloni, and are regarded as a Scythian tribe (Ephor. op. Scymn. Fr. v. 123, or 823, ed. Meineke; Mela ii. 1; Pliu. iv. 26; PtoL iii. 5; Dion. Perieg. 310; Avien. Deter. Orb. 447; Steph. B. t. v.; Suid. t. v. 4c). In their country was found gold and also precious stones, among which was the diamond, ibdnas wo^aXuruv (Herod, iv. 104; Amm. Marc xxii. 8; Dion. Perieg. 317). According to Herodotus, they were a luxurious race (atporiroi, Ritter explains this as referring to fine clothing), and wore much gold: they had a community of wives, in order that all the people might regard each other as brethren; and in their other customs they resembled the Thracians (iv. 104). They lived under kingly government; and Herodotus mentions their king Spargapcithes as the murderer of the Scythian king, Ariapeithes (iv. 78). Frequent allusions are made by later writers to their custom of painting (or rather tattooing) their bodies, in a way to indicate their rank, and staining their hair a dark blue (Virg. Am. iv. 146; Serv. ad he.; Plin. iv. 26; Solin. 20; Avien. L c; Ammian. I. c; Mela ii. 1: Agathgrti era artusque pingunt: ut quique majoribut praettant, ita magit, vel minus: cetcrum Utdem omnet notis, et tic ut ablui nequeant). Aristotle mentions their practice of solemnly reciting their laws lest they should forget them, as observed in his time (Prob. xix. 28). Finally, they are mentioned by Virgil (Lc~) among the worshippers of the Delian Apollo, where their name is, doubtless, used as a specific poetical synonym for the Hyperboreans in general: —

"mixtique altaria circum Cretesqne Dryopesque fremunt pictique Agatliyrsi."

Niebuhr (A'fetne Sckriften, voL i. p. 377) regards the Agathyrsi of Herodotus, or at least the people who occupied the position assigned to them by Herjdotus, as the same people as the Getae or Daciana (Ukert, voLiii.pt. 2, pp. 418-421; Georgii,vol. ii.pp. 302, 303; Ritter, Vorhatte, pp. 287, foil.) [P. S.]

AGBATANA. [echatana.]

AGENDICUM, or AGETINCUM in the Peutinger Table, one of the chief towns of the Senenes in the time of Caesar (B. G. vi. 44, vii. 10, 57). The orthography of the word varies in the MSS. of Caesar, where there is Agendicum, Agedincum, and Agedicum. If it is the town which was afterwards called Senones (Amm. Marc. xvi. 3, Senonas oppidom), we may conclude that it is represented by the modem town of Sent, on the river Yonne. Some critics have supposed that Provint represents Agendicum. Under the Roman empire, in the later division of Gallia, Agendicum was the chief town of Lugdunensis Quarta, and it was the centre of several Roman roads. In the walls of the city there are some stones with Roman inscriptions and sculptures. The name Agredicum in the Antonine Itinerary may be a corruption of Agendicum. [G. I..]

AGLNNUM or AGENNUM (Agen), was the chief town of the Nitiobriges, a tribe situated between the Garnmna and the Ligeris in Caesar's time (S. G. vii. 7, 75). Aginnum was on the road from Burdigala to Argentomagus (It. Antonin.). It is the origin of the modem town of Agen, on the river Garonne, in the department of Lot and Garonne, and contains some Roman remains. Aginnum is mentioned by Ausonius (Ep. xxiv. 79); and it wan the birthplace of Snlpicius Severus. [G. L.]

AGISYMBA ('A-ylo-u/tSa), the general name under which Ptolemy includes the whole interior of Africa S. of the Equator; which he regards as belonging to Acthiopia (i. 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, iv. 8, vii. 6). [P. S.]

A'GORA ('A7opa), a town situated about the middle of the narrow neck of the Thracian Chersonesns, and not far from Cardia. Xerxes, when invading Greece, passed through it. (Herod, vii. 58; Scvlax, p. 28; Steph. B. J. ».) [L. S.]

AGRA CAypa 'Apagias, Ptol. vL 7. § 5; Stcph. It. s. w. 'ladpivxa/Eypa)^ small district of Arabia Felix, situated at the foot of Mount Hippus, on the eastern coast of the Red Sea, in lat. 29 J N. (Akra). Iathrippa or Lathrippa seems to have been its principal town. [W. B. D.]

AGRAE. [attica.]

AGRAEI (,A7p<uoi, Thnc iii. 106; Strab. p. 449: 'A7/KK11, PoL xvii. 5; Steph. Byz. t. r.), a people in the NW. of Aetolia, bounded on the W. by Acamnnia, from which it was separated by Mount Thyamus (Spartovuni); on the NW. by the territory of Argos Amphilochicum; and on the N. by Dolopia. Their territory was called Agraia, or Agraia ('Aypats, -tSos, Thnc. iii. 111; 'fi-ypala, Strab. p. 338), and the river Achelous flowed through the centra of it. The Agraei were a nonHcllcnic people, and at the commencement of the l'eloponnesian war were governed by a native king, allied Salynthius, who is mentioned as an ally of the Ambraciots, when the latter were defeated by the Acarnanians and Demosthenes in B. c. 426. Two years afterwards (424) Demosthenes marched against Salynthius and the Agraei, and compelled them to join the Athenian alliance. Subsequently they became subject to the Aetolians, and are called an Actolian people by Strabo. (Tliuc. ii. 102, iii. 106, 114, iv. 77; Strab. p. 449; Pol. xvii. 5; Liv. xxxii. 34.) This people is mentioned by Cicero (m Pt3on. 37), under the name of Agrinae, which is perhaps a corrupt form. Strabo (p. 338) mentions a village called Ephyra in their country; and Agrinium would also appear from its name to have been one of their towns. [ephyka; Agrinium.] The Ai*ranti were perhaps a tribe of the Agraei. [aperantia.] The Agraei were a different people from the Agrianes, who lived on the borders of Macedonia. [agrianes.]

AGRAEI ('A-ypoToi, Ptol. v. 19. § 2; Eratosth. apt Strab. p. 767), a tribe of Arabs situated near the main road which led from the head of the Red Sea to the Euphrates. They bordered on the Nabathaean Arabs, if they were not indeed a portion of that race. According to Hicronymus (Quaett. in Gen. 25), the Agraei inhabited the district which the Hebrews designated as Midian. Pliny (v. 11. s. 12) places the Agraei much further westward in the vicinity of the Laenitae and the eastern shore of the Red Sea. [W.B.D.]

AGRAULE or AGRYLE. [attica.]

AGRI DECUMA'TES or DECUMA'NI (from decurna, tithe), tithe lands, a name given by the Itomans to the country E. of the Rhine and N. of the Danube, which they took possession of on the withdrawal of the Germans to the E., and which they gavo to the immigrating Gauls and subject Germans, and subsequently to their own veterans, on the payment of a tenth of the produce. Towards the end of the first or the beginning of the second century after Christ, the country became part of the adjoining Roman province of Rhaetia, and was thus incorporated with the empire. (Tacit. Germ. 29.) Its boundary

towards the free part of Germany was protected partly by a wall (from Ratisbon to Lorch), and partly by a mound (from Lorch to the Rhine, in the neighbourhood of Cologne) and Roman garrisons. The protection of those districts against the ever renewed attacks of the Germans required a considerable military force, and this gave rise to a number of towns and military roads, of which many traces still exist. But still the Romans were unable to maintain themselves, and the part which was lost first seems to have been the country about the river Maine and Mount Taunus. The southern portion was probably lost soon after the death of the emperor Probua (a. i) 283), when the Alemanni took possession of it. The latest of the Roman inscriptions found in that country belongs to the reign of Gallienns (a. D. 260 —268). (Comp. Leichtlen, Schtcaben vnter den Jlomern, Freiburg, 1825, 8vo.) The towns in the Decumates Agri were Ambiatinus vicus, Auslm, Divitia, Gesonia, Victoria, Bibema, Aquae Mattiacae, Munimentum Trajani, Artauuum, Triburium, Bragodurum or Bragodunum, Budoris, Carithni, and others. Comp. Rhaetia. [L. S.]

AGRIA'NES ('A7ptdinjr: Ergina), a small river in Thrace, and one of the tributaries of the Hebrus. (Herod, iv. 89.) It flows from Mount Hieron in a NW. direction, till it joins the Hebras. Some have supposed it to be the same as the Erigon, which, however, is impossible, the latter being a tributary of the Axius. [L. S.]

AGRIA'NES ('A7piS«r), a Paeonian people, dwelling near the sources of the Strymon. They formed excellent light-armed troops, and are frequently mentioned in the campaigns of Alexander the Great, (Strab. p. 331; Herod, v. 16; Thucii. 96; Arrian, Anab. i. 1. § 11, i. 5. § 1, et alib.)

AGRIGENTUM {'AKpdyas*: Eth. and Adj. tAjcpayavru/osJ Agrigentinus: Girgenti), one of the most powerful and celebrated of the Greek cities in Sicily, was situated on the SW. coast of the island, about midway between Selinus and Gela. It stood on a hill between two and three miles from the sea, the foot of which was washed ou the E. and S. by a river named the Acraoas, from whence the city itself derived its appellation, on the W. and SW. by another stream named the Hypsas, which unites its waters with those of the Acrag&s just below the city, and about a mile from its mouth. The former is now called the Fiume di S. Biagio, the latter the Drago, while their united stream is commonly known as the Fiume di Girgenti (Polyb. ix.27; Siefert, Atragas u.tein Gebiet, p. 20—22).

We learn from Thucydides that Agrigentum was founded by a colony from Gela, 108 years after the establishment of the parent city, or B. c. 582. The leaders of the colony were Aristonous and Pystilus, and it received the Dorian institutions of the mother country, including the sacred rites and observances which had been derived by Gela itself from Rhodes. On this account it is sometimes called a Rhodiau colony. (Thuc. vL 4; Scymn. Ch. 292; Strab. vi. p. 272,where Kramer justlyreads TeA^Wfor 'Idmr; Polyb. ix. 27. Concerning the date of its foundation see Scbol. ad Pind. 01. ii. 66; and Clinton, F. H. vol. ii. p. 265.) We have very little information concerning its early history, but it appears to have very rapidly risen to great prosperity and power;

* The form Acraoas or Aoragas in Latin is found only in the Roman poets. (Virg. Aen. iii 703; SiL llal. xiv. 210.)

ibsrfi it preserved its liberty fur but ft very short

period before it fell under the yoke of Phalaris (about 570 B. c). The history of that despot is involved m bo roach uncertainty that it is difficult to know what part of it can be depended on as really historical. [Did. of Biogr. art, Phalabjs, vol. in.] But it seems certain that lie raised Agrigentum to be {»« of the most powerful cities in Sicily, and extruded his dominion by force of arms over a considerable part of the island. But the cruel and : . ... character of his internal government at length provoked a general insurrection, in winch l'halaris himself perished, and the Agrigen; ines recovered their liberty. (Diod. Exc. Vat. p. 25; Cic. deOfi iL 7; Heraclides, Pulit. 37.) From this period till the accession of Theron, an interval of about 60 y«ars, we have no information concerning Agrigentum, except a casual notice that it was successively governed by Alcameues and Alcandrus (but whether as despots or chief magistrates docs not appear), and that it rose to great wealth and prosperity tinker their rule. (Heradid. /. c.) The pret.be date when Theron attained to the sovereignty uf liis native city, as well as the steps by winch he rose to power, are unknown to us: but he appears to have become despot of Agrigentum as early as B. C. 4$&. (Diod. xi. 53.) By his alliance with Gelon of Syracuse, and still more by the expulsion of Terillus from Himera, and the annexation of that city to his dominions, Theron extended as well as confirmed his power, and the great Carthaginian invasion in P. c 480, which for a time threatened destruction to all the Greek cities in Sicily, ultimately became a source of increased prosperity to Agrigentum. For after the great victory of Gelon and Theron at Hin. a vast number of Carthaginian prisoners fell into the hands of the Agrigentines, and were employed by them partly in the cultivation of their extensive and fertile territory, partly in the construction of public works in the city itself, the magnificence of which was long afterwards a subject of admiration. (Diod. xi. 25.) Nor does the goTenunent of Theron appear to have been oppressive, and be continued in the undisturbed possession of the sovereign power till his death, B. C. 472. llis »n Thrasrdaeus on the contrary quickly alienated his subjects by his violent and arbitrary conduct, and was expelled from Agrigentum within a year after his Cither's death. (Id. xi. 53. For further details concerning the history of Agrigentnni during this period, see the articles Theron and TurastDAtt s in the Diet, of Biogr. vol. iii.)

The Agrigentines now established a democratic ffnn of government, which they retained without interruption for the space of above 60 years, until the Carthaginian invasion in B.C. 406—a period which may be regarded as the most prosperous and nourishing in the history of Agrigentum, as well as uf many others of the Sicilian cities. The great public, works which were commenced or completed during this interval were the wonder of succeeding ages; the city itself was adorned with buildings both public and private, inferior to none in Greece, and tlie wealth and magnificence of its inhabitants became almost proverbial. Their own citizen Empedocles is said to have remarked that they built their houses as if they were to live for ever, but gave themselves up to luxury as if they were to die on the morrow. (Diog. Laert. viii. 2. § 63.)

The number of citizens of Agrigentum at this time is stated by Diodorus at 20,000: but he esti

mates the whole population (including probably slaves as well as strangers) at not less than 200,000 (Diod. xiiL 84 and DO), a statement by no means improbable, while that of Diogenes Laertius (/. c), who makes the population of the city alone amount to 800,000, is certainly a gross exaggeration.

This period was however by no means one of unbroken peace. Agrigentum could not avoid participating—though in a less degree than many other cities—in the troubles consequent on the expulsion of the Gelonian dynasty from Syracuse, and the revolutions that followed iu different parts of Sicily. Shortly afterwards we find it engaged in hostilities with the Sicel chief Ducetius, and the conduct uf the Syracusans towards tliat chieftain led to a war between them and the Agrigentines, which ended in a great defeat of the latter at the river Himera, B. c. 446. (Diod. xL 76, 91, xii. 8.) We find also obscure notices of internal dissensions, which were allayed by the wisdom and moderation of Empeduclea. (Diog. Laert. viii 2. § 64—67.) On occasion of the great Athenian expedition to Sicily in B. C. 415, Agrigentum maintained a strict neutrality, and not only declined sending auxiliaries to either party but refused to allow a passage through their territory to those of other cities. And even when the tide of fortune had turned decidedly against the Athenian*, all the efforts of the Syracusan partisans within the walls of Agrigentum failed in inducing their fellow, citizens to declare for the victorious party. (Thuc. vii. 32, 33, 46, 50, 58.)

A more formidable danger was at hand. The Cart ling inians, whose intervention was invoked by the Segestans, were ooutented in their first expedition (b. C. 409) with the capture of Selinus and Himera: but when the second was sent in B. C. 406 it was Agrigentum that was destined to bear the first brunt of the attack. The luxurious habits of the Agrigentines had probably rendered them little fit for warfare, but they were supported by a body of mercenaries under the command of ft Lacedaemonian named Dexippus, who occupied the citadel, and the natural strength of the city in great measure defied the efforts of the assailants. But notwithstanding these advantages and the efficient aid rendered them by a Syracusan army under Daphnaeus, they were reduced to such distress by famine that after a siege of eight months they found it impossible to hold out longer, and to avoid surrendering to the enemy, abandoned their city, and migrated to Gels. Thesick and helpless inhabitants were massacred, and the city itself with all its wealth and magnificence plundered by the Carthaginians, who occupied it as their quarters during the winter, but completed its destruction when they quitted it in the spring, B.C.405. (Diod. xui. 80—9*1, 108; Xen. BdL i. 5. § 21.)

Agrigentum never recovered from this fatal blow, though by the terms of the peace concluded with Dionysins by the Carthaginians, the fugitive inhabitants were permitted to return, and to occupy the ruined city, subject however to the Carthagiiiian rule, and on condition of not restoring the fortifies^ tions, a permission of which many appear to haveavailed themselves. (Diod. xiii. 114.) A few years later they were even able to shake off the yoke of Carthage and attach themselves to the cause of Dionysins, and the peace of B. C. 383, which fixed the river Halycus as the boundary of the Carthaginian dominions, must have left them in the enjoyment of their liberty; but though we find them repeatedly mentioned during the wars of Dionysius and his successors, it is evident that the city was far from having recovered its previous importance, and continued to play but a subordinate part. (Diod. xiv. 46,88, xv. 17, xvi. 9 j Plut. Dion, 25,26,49.) In the general settlement of the affairs of Sicily by Timoleon, after his great victory over the Carthaginians on the Crimissus, B. c. 340, he found Agrigentum in a state of such depression that he resolved to rccolonise it with citizens from Velia in Italy (Plut. Timol. 35.): a measure which, combined with other benefits, proved of such advantage to the city, that Timoleon was looked upon as their second founder: and during the interval of peace which followed, Agrigentum again attained to such great prosperity as to become once more the rival of Syracuse.

Shortly after the accession of Agathocles, the Agrigentinee, becoming apprehensive that he was a-piring to the dominion of the whole island, entered into a league with the Geloans and Messenians to oppose his power, and obtained from Sparta the assistance of Acrotatus the son of Cleomenes as their general: but the character of that prince frustrated all their plans, and after his expulsion they were compelled to purchase peace from Syracuse by the acknowledgement of the Hegemony or supremacy of that city, n.o. 314. (Diod. xix. 70,71.) Some years afterwards, in B. c. 309, the absence of Agathocles in Africa, and the reverses sustained by his partisans in Sicily, appeared again to offer a favourable opening to the ambition of the Agrigentines, who chose Xenodocus for their general, and openly aspired to the Hegemony of Sicily, proclaiming at the same timo the independence of the several cities. They were at first very successful: the powerful cities of Gcla and Enna joined their cause, Herbessus and Echetla were taken by force; but when Xenodocus ventured on a pitched battle with Leptines and Demophilus, the generals of Agathocles, he sustained a severe defeat, and was compelled to shut himself up within the walls of Agrigentum. Agathocles himself shortly afterwards returned from Africa, and quickly recovered almost all that he had lost: his general Leptines invaded the territory of Agrigentum, totally defeated Xenodocus, and compelled the Agrigentines once more to sue for peace. (Diod. xx. 31, 32, 56, 62.)

After the death of Agathocles, Agrigentum fell under the yoke of Phintias, who became despot of the city, and assumed the title of king. We have very little information concerning the period of his rule, but he appears to have attained to great power, as we find Agyrium and other cities of the interior subject to his dominion, as well as Gela, which he destroyed, in order to found a new city named after himself. [gela.] The period of his expulsion is unknown, but at the time when Pyrrhus landed in Sicily we find Agrigentum occupied by Sosistratus with a strong force of mercenary troops, who however hastened to make his submission to the king of Epeirus. (Diod. xxii. Exc. Hoesch. p. 495—497.)

On the commencement of the First Punic War, Agrigentum espoused the cause of the Carthaginians, and even permitted their general Hannibal to fortify their citadel, and occupy the city with a Carthaginian garrison. Hence after the Romans had secured the alliance of Hieron of Syracuse, their principal efforts were directed to the reduction of Agrigentum, and in B. c. 262 the two consuls L. Postuniius ami (J. Mamilius laid siege to it with their whole force. The siege lasted nearly as long

as that by the Carthaginians in B. C. 406, and the Romans suffered severely from disease and want of provisions, but the privations of the besieged were still greater, and the Carthaginian general Hanno, who had advanced with a large army to relieve the city, having been totally defeated by the Roman consuls, Hannibal who commanded the army within the walls found it impossible to hold out any longer, and made his escape in the night with the Carthaginian and mercenary troops, leaving the city to its fate. It was immediately occupied by the Romans who carried off 25,000 of the inhabitants into slavery. The siege had lasted above seven months, and is said to have cost the victorious army mora than 30,000 men. (Diod. xxiii. Exc. Hoesch. p. 501 —503; Polyb. i. 17—19; Zonar. viii. 10.) At a later period of the war (b. C. 255) successive losses at sea having greatly weakened the Roman power in Sicily, the Carthaginian general Carthalo recovered possession of Agrigentum with comparatively little difficulty, when he once more laid the city in ashes and razed its walls, the surviving inhabitants having taken refuge in the temple of the Olympian Zeus. (Diod. /. c. p. 505.)

From this time we hear no more of Agrigentum till the end of the First Punic War, when it passed under the dominion of Rome: but it must have in some degree recovered from its late calamities, as it plays no unimportant part when the contest between Rome and Carthage was renewed in the Second Punic War. On this occasion it continued steadfast in its adherence to the Romans, but was surprised and taken by Himilco, before Marccllus could arrive to its support (Liv. xxtv. 35.): and from henceforth became the chief stronghold of the. Carthaginians in Sicily, and held out against the Roman consul Lacvinus long after the other cities in the island had submitted. At length the Numidian Mutines, to whose courage and skill the Carthaginians owed their protracted defence, having been offended by their general Hanno, betrayed the city into the hands of Laevmus, B. o. 210. The leading citizens were put to death, and the rest sold as slaves. (Liv. xxv. 40, 41, xxvi. 40.)

Agrigentum now became, in common with the rest of the Sicilian cities, permanently subject to Rome: but it was treated with much favour and enjoyed many privileges. Three years after its capture a number of new citizens from other parts of Sicily were established there by the praetor Mamilius, and two years after this the municipal rights and privileges of the citizens were determined by Scipio Africanus in a manner so satisfactory that they continued unaltered till the time of Verres. Cicero repeatedly mentions Agrigentum as one of the most wealthy and populous cities of Sicily, the fertility of its territory and the convenience of its port rendering it one of the chief emporiums for the trade in com. (Cic. Verr. ii. 50, 62, iii. 43, iv. 33, 43.) It is certain, however, that it did not in his day rank as a Roman colony, and it is very doubtful whether it ever attained this distinction, though we find that it was allowed to strike coins, with the Latin inscription Aokioentum, as late as the time of Augustus. (Eckhel, D. N. vol. i. p. 193.)* If it really obtained the title and privileges of a colony under that emperor, it must have soon lost them, as neither Pliny

* Mommsen (Das Romische Mi'mz- Weaen, p. 237) considers Agrigentum to have been on the footing of aColonia Latina, like Neniausus in Gaul.

« السابقةمتابعة »