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Valerius Maximus

praetura multum aut rei publicae maiestas nihil potuit.

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Munatius etiam Flaccus, Pompeiani nominis acrior quam probabilior defensor, cum ab imperatore Caesare in Hispania inclusus moenibus Ateguensium obsideretur, efferatam crudelitatem suam truculentissimo genere vesaniae exercuit: omnes enim eius oppidi cives quos studiosiores Caesaris senserat iugulatos muris praecipitavit. feminas quoque, citatis nominibus virorum qui in contrariis castris erant, ut caedes coniugum suarum cernerent, maternis<que>24 gremiis superpositos liberos trucidavit. infantes alios in conspectu parentum humo infligi, alios superiactatos pilis excipi iussit. quae auditu etiam intolerabilia Romano iussu Lusitanis manibus administrata sunt, cuius gentis praesidio Flaccus vallatus divinis opibus vecordi pertinacia resistebat.

ext. 1Transgrediemur nunc ad illa quibus, ut par dolor, ita nullus nostrae civitatis rubor inest. Carthaginienses Atilium Regulum palpebris resectis machinae, in qua undique praeacuti stimuli eminebant, inclusum vigilantia pariter et continuo tractu doloris necaverunt, tormenti genus indignum25 passo, auctoribus dignissimum. eadem usi crudelitate milites nostros [quos]26 maritimo certamine in suam potestatem redactos navibus substraverunt, ut earumcarinis ac pondere elisi inusitata ratione mortis barbaram

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Book IX

powerful was the Praetorship of a miscreant or so powerless the majesty of the commonwealth.

Munatius Flaccus too, a more zealous than respectable defender of the Pompeian name, vented his savage cruelty in a most brutal form of madness when general Caesar shut him inside the town of the Ateguenses in Spain. For he butchered all the citizens of that place whom he had thought were favouring Caesar and flung them from the walls. He also slaughtered women, proclaiming the names of their husbands who were in the opposing camp, so that these should see the murder of their wives, likewise children in their mothers’ lap. He ordered infants to be dashed on the ground in sight of their parents, others to be impaled on javelins.4 These atrocities, intolerable even in the hearing, were carried out on Roman order by Lusitanian hands. Guarded by a force of that nation, Flaccus resisted divine power with frantic obstinacy.

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We shall now pass to actions equally painful but containing nothing to shame our community. The Carthaginians cut off Atilius Regulus’ eyelids, shut him in a machine in which sharp points stood out from all angles, and killed him from lack of sleep and extension of pain, a torture undeserved by the sufferer but richly deserved by its authors.5 With the same cruelty they strewed our men who had fallen into their hands in a naval engagement under ships to be crushed by the weight of the keels, satiating their barbarous savagery by the extraordinary manner of

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.valerius_maximus-memorable_doings_sayings.2000