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Denys d'Halicarnasse, Les Antiquités romaines, livre VI


Texte grec :

[6,27] Τότε μὲν οὖν ᾤχοντο ἐκ τῆς ἀγορᾶς, τῇ δ´ ἑξῆς ἡμέρᾳ παρῆν οὐ μόνον ὁ κατὰ πόλιν ὄχλος, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἐκ τῶν σύνεγγυς ἀγρῶν τὸ δημοτικὸν πλῆθος καὶ ἦν ἐξ ἑωθινοῦ πλήρης ἡ ἀγορά. τῆς δὲ βουλῆς συναχθείσης, ἵνα περὶ τούτων βουλεύσειεν, ὅ τι χρὴ πράττειν, ὁ μὲν Ἄππιος δημοκόπον ἐκάλει τὸν συνάρχοντα καὶ τῆς ἀπονοίας τῶν ἀπόρων ἡγεμόνα, ὁ δὲ Σερουίλιος ἐκεῖνον αὐστηρὸν καὶ αὐθάδη καὶ τῶν παρόντων τῇ πόλει κακῶν αἴτιον· τέλος δ´ οὐδὲν ἐγίνετο τῶν λόγων. ἐν δὲ τούτῳ Λατίνων ἱππεῖς κατὰ σπουδὴν ἐλαύνοντες τοὺς ἵππους παρῆσαν εἰς τὴν ἀγορὰν ἐξεληλυθότας ἀγγέλλοντες τοὺς πολεμίους μεγάλῃ στρατιᾷ καὶ ὄντας ἐπὶ τοῖς ἑαυτῶν ὁρίοις ἤδη. καὶ οἱ μὲν ταῦτα, οἱ δὲ πατρίκιοι καὶ τὸ τῶν ἱππέων πλῆθος τῶν τ´ ἄλλων, ὅσοι πλούτους ἢ δόξας προγονικὰς εἶχον, οἷα δὴ περὶ μεγάλων κινδυνεύοντες ὡπλίζοντο διὰ τάχους· ὅσοι δ´ ἦσαν αὐτῶν ἄποροι, μάλιστα δ´ οἱ τοῖς δανείοις πιεζόμενοι, οὔθ´ ὅπλων ἥπτοντο οὔτ´ ἄλλως παρείχοντο τοῖς κοινοῖς πράγμασιν ἐπικουρίαν οὐδεμίαν, ἡδόμενοι δὲ καὶ κατ´ εὐχὴν δεχόμενοι τὸν ἔξωθεν πόλεμον, ὡς τῶν παρόντων σφᾶς κακῶν ἐλευθερώσοντα, τοῖς δὲ δεομένοις ἀμύνειν ἐπιδεικνύντες τὰς ἁλύσεις καὶ τὰς πέδας, ἐπικερτομοῦντες ἠρώτων, εἰ τούτων φυλακῆς ἕνεκα τῶν ἀγαθῶν ἄξιον εἴη σφίσι πολεμεῖν· πολλοὶ δὲ καὶ λέγειν ἐτόλμων, ὡς ἄμεινον εἴη Οὐολούσκοις δουλεύειν μᾶλλον ἢ τὰς ὕβρεις τῶν πατρικίων ὑπομένειν· ἥ τε πόλις οἰμωγῆς καὶ θορύβου καὶ παντοίων γυναικείων ὀδυρμῶν ἐνεπίμπλατο.

Traduction française :

[6,27] Accordingly, they left the Forum for that time. But the next day there appeared, not only the inhabitants of the city, but also the plebeians from the neighbouring country districts and the Forum was crowded by break of day. The senate having been assembled to consider what was to be done about the situation, Appius proceeded to call his colleague a flatterer of the people and the leader of the poor in their madness, while Servilius called Appius harsh and arrogant and the cause of the present evils in the state; and there was no end to their wrangling. In the meantime some horsemen of the Latins came riding full speed into the Forum announcing that the enemy had taken the field with a great army and were already upon their own borders. Such were the tidings they brought. Thereupon the patricians and the whole body of the knights, together with all who were wealthy or of distinguished ancestry, since they had a great deal at stake, armed themselves in all haste. But the poor among them, and particularly such as were hard pressed by debt, neither took up arms nor offered any other assistance to the common cause, but were pleased and received the news of the foreign war as an answer to their (p323) prayers, believing that it would free them from their present evils. To those who besought them to lend their aid they showed their chains and fetters and asked them in derision whether it was worth their while to make war in order to preserve those blessings; and many even ventured to say that it was better for them to be slaves to the Volscians than to bear the abuses of the patricians. And the city was filled with wailing, tumult, and all sorts of womanish lamentations.

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Dernière mise à jour : 9/01/2007