Accius, Annals

LCL 314: 590-591

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Festus, 130, 15: ‘Metalli’ dicuntur in lege militari quasi mercennarii. Accius Annali † XXVII—

calones famulique metallique caculaeque;

a quo genere hominum Caeciliae familiae cognomen putant ductum.

Cp. Paul., ex F., 131, 19.


Macrobius, S., I, 7, 36: Apparet Saturnalia vetustiora esse urbe Romana, adeo ut ante Romam in Graecia hoc sollemne coepisse L. Accius in Annalibus suis referat his versibus—

Maxima pars Graium Saturno et maxime Athenae conficiunt sacra quae Cronia esse iterantur ab illis;





Festus: ‘Metalli’ is a term applied, in military law, to men who serve for pay. Accius in the second (?)c book of Annals

batmen and thralls, drudges and money grubbers;d

This is the kind of men (sc. metalli) from which they believe the gens Caecilia has derived its surname (sc. Metellus).


The Saturnalia:

Macrobius: It appears that the Saturnalia are older than the city of Rome; inasmuch as, according to Lucius Accius in the following lines of his Annals, this yearly festival began in Greece before Rome existed—

Most of the Greeks, and Athens above all, Prepare in Saturn’s honour ceremonies Which are called Cronia, as they relate; (see p. 593).

  • bWritten in hexameters and divided into several books, the Annals of Accius was a work apparently concerned not with history but with festivals, of which the author possibly gave the origins and development.
  • cXXVII, which is surely wrong. The first three numerals may be the result of deletions of false strokes.
  • dOr ‘gold-diggers,’ from μέταλλον, a mine, otherwise we might translate ‘brassmen.’ Some read metellique ‘and hired men’.
DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.accius-annals.1936