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Denys d'Halicarnasse, Les Antiquités romaines, livre XV [fragments]

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Texte grec :

[15,6] Συναχθείσης δὲ τῆς βουλῆς καὶ πολλῶν ῥηθέντων ἐν αὐτῇ λόγων, οὓς αἵ τε πρεσβεῖαι διεξῆλθον καὶ οἱ συναγορεύοντες αὐταῖς, διέστησαν αἱ γνῶμαι τῶν συνέδρων, καὶ οἵ γε χαριέστατοι τὰ τῶν Ῥωμαίων ἔδοξαν φρονεῖν. ἐκείνην μὲν οὖν τὴν ἡμέραν οὐδὲν ἐξηνέχθη προβούλευμα, εἰς ἑτέραν δὲ πάλιν ἕδραν ἀναβληθείσης τῆς περὶ τῶν πρεσβειῶν διαγνώσεως, ἀφικόμενοι κατὰ πλῆθος εἰς τὴν Νεάπολιν Σαυνιτῶν οἱ δυνατώτατοι καὶ τοὺς προεστηκότας τῶν κοινῶν θεραπείαις τισὶν οἰκειωσάμενοι πείθουσι τὴν βουλὴν ἐπὶ τῷ δήμῳ ποιῆσαι τὴν τοῦ συμφέροντος αἵρεσιν. καὶ παρελθόντες εἰς τὴν ἐκκλησίαν πρῶτον μὲν τὰς ἑαυτῶν εὐεργεσίας διεξῄεσαν, ἔπειτα τῆς Ῥωμαίων πόλεως πολλὰ κατηγόρουν, ὡς ἀπίστου καὶ δολίου, τελευτῶντες δὲ τοῦ λόγου θαυμαστὰς ἐποιοῦντο τοῖς Νεαπολίταις ὑποσχέσεις, ἐὰν εἰς τὸν πόλεμον καταστῶσι, στρατιάν τε πέμψειν, ὅσης ἂν δέωνται, τὴν φυλάξουσαν αὐτῶν τὰ τείχη, καὶ ταῖς ναυσὶν ἐπιβάτας καὶ τὴν εἰρεσίαν ἅπασαν παρέξειν, οὐ μόνον καταγγέλλοντες τοῖς ἰδίοις στρατεύμασιν, ἀλλὰ κἀκείνοις ἁπάσας τὰς εἰς πόλεμον δαπάνας ἐπιχορηγοῦντες· ἀπωσαμένοις τε τὸ Ῥωμαϊκὸν στράτευμα Κύμην τ´ ἀνασώσειν, ἣν δευτέρᾳ γενεᾷ πρότερον ἐξελάσαντες τοὺς Κυμαίους Καμπανοὶ κατέσχον, καὶ συγκατάξειν ἐπὶ τὰ σφέτερα τοὺς περιόντας ἔτι Κυμαίων, οὓς οἱ Νεαπολῖται τῆς πατρίδος ἐκπεσόντας ὑπεδέξαντο καὶ πάντων ἐποιήσαντο κοινωνοὺς τῶν ἰδίων ἀγαθῶν, χώραν τε προσθήσειν τοῖς Νεαπολίταις, ἐξ ἧς οἱ Καμπανοὶ κατεῖχον πάνυ πολλήν. Τῶν δὲ Νεαπολιτῶν ὅσον μὲν ἦν μέρος εὔλογον καὶ πρὸ πολλοῦ δυνάμενον ὁρᾶν τὰς καταληψομένας τὴν πόλιν ἐκ τοῦ πολέμου συμφορὰς εἰρήνην ἄγειν ἠξίου· τὸ δὲ φιλόκαινον καὶ τὰς ἐκ τῆς ταραχῆς πλεονεξίας διῶκον ἐπὶ τὸν πόλεμον συνελάμβανον, καταβοαί τ´ ἀλλήλων ἐγίνοντο καὶ χειροκρασίαι καὶ προέβη τὸ νεῖκος εἰς λίθων βολάς, καὶ τελευτῶντες ἐκράτησαν οἱ κακίους τῶν κρειττόνων, ὥστε τοὺς πρέσβεις τῶν Ῥωμαίων ἀπράκτους ἀπελθεῖν. διὰ ταύτας τὰς αἰτίας ἡ βουλὴ τῶν Ῥωμαίων στρατιὰν ἐπὶ Νεαπολίτας ἀποστεῖλαι ἐβουλεύθη.

Traduction française :

[15,6] When the senate had convened and many speeches had been made there by both the embassies and their supporters, the opinions of the councillors were divided, though the most enlightened seemed to favour the Roman cause. 2 On that day, accordingly, no preliminary decree was passed but the decision with regard to the embassies was postponed to another session, at which time the most influential of the Samnites came in large numbers to Neapolis, and winning over the men at the head of the state by means of some favours, persuaded the senate to leave to the popular assembly the decision regarding the best interests of the state. 3 And appearing before the assembly, they first recounted their own services, then made many accusations against the Roman state, charging it with being faithless and treacherous; and (p303) at the end of their speech they made some remarkable promises to the Neapolitans if they would enter the war. They would send an army, they announced, as large as the Neapolitans should require, to guard their walls, and would also furnish marines for their ships as well as all the rowers, providing all the expenses of the war not only for their own armies, but for the others too. 4 Furthermore, when the Neapolitans had repulsed the Roman army, they would not only recover Cumae for them, which the Campanians had occupied two generations earlier after expelling the Cumaeans, but would also restore to their possessions those of the Cumaeans who still survived — these, when driven out of their own city, had been received by the Neapolitans and made sharers of all their own blessings — and they would also grant to the Neapolitans some of the land the Campanians were then holding, — the part without cities. 5 The element among the Neapolitans that was reasonable and able to foresee long in advance the disasters that would come upon the city from the war, wished to remain at peace; but the element that was fond of innovations and sought the personal advantages to be gained from turmoil joined forces for the war. There were mutual recriminations and skirmishes, and the strife was carried to the point of hurling stones; in the end the worse element overpowered the better, so the ambassadors of the Romans returned home (p305) without having accomplished anything. For these reasons the Roman senate resolved to send an army against the Neapolitans.





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