Sidor som bilder

tñs reproides teen of the Senate Senators, but in testi 20.1.16.

Magistrates establish'd in Old Carthage ; for he says that amongst the Prisoners taken at the New were two Magistrates of the Body of the Old Men Céu tñs reprolas] fo he calls the Council of the, dred; and fifteen of the Senate Céu tns Evynútr.) Livy mentions only the fifteen Senators, but in an-L.26.n.51. other place he names the Old Men, and observes 2001 that they were the most vererable Council which belong'd to the State, and had a great Authority in the Senate P.

ESTABLISHMENTS, constituted with the greatest Wisdom, and the justest Harmony of Parts, degenerate infenfibly into Disorder and the most deftruca tive Licence.' Those Judges, while in a lawful Execution of their Power were a Terror to Tranfgreffors, and the great Pillars of Juftice, abusing fo boundless a Power, became so many Tyrants and Oppressors of Liberty. We shall see this verify'd in the History of the great Hannibal, who, during his Pretorship, after his Return to Africk, employ'd all his Credit to reform fo crying an Abuse, and A. M.; made an Authority, which was perpetual 'before, 3802. become annual, about two hundred Years after its Tears of: Inftitution.

682, Carthaginienfes... Ora- nam'd Afdrubal, taken from tores ad pacem perendam mir- bim, upon a Report that Hamiltunt triginta feniorum principes. car was more familiar with this Id erat fan&tius apud illos con- Touth than was confiftent with cilium, maximaque ad ipfum Modefty. Erat præterea cum eo senatum regendum vis. Mr. [Amilcare] adolefcens illuftris & Rollin might have taken notice formofus Hafdrubal, quem nonof Civil Officers eftablished at nulli diligi turpius, quam par Carthage, with a Power, like crat ab Amilcare, loquebanthat of the Cenfors at Rome, tur .... Quo fa&um eft ut a to infpe& the Manners of the Ci- Præfe&to morum Hafdrubal cum tizens. By the chief of these of- eo vetaretur esse. Corn, Nep. in ficers, Hamilcar, the fatber of Vita Amilcaris. Hannibal, bad a beautiful Touth,



ARISTOTLE, amongst other Refle{tions made by him upon the Government of Carthage, remarks two great Defeets very contrary, in his Opinion, to the Views of a wise Law-giver, and the Rules of sound Policy.

The first of these Defects was the investing the fame Perlons with different Charges, which was consider'd at Carthage as a Proof of an uncommon Merit. Aristotle is of Opinion that this Practice was prejudicial to the Community. For, says he, a Man possess’d of only one Employ is a great deal more capable to acquit himself well in the Execution of it, as Affairs are examin'd with greater Care, and gone through with readier Dispatch. It is never seen, continues he, either by Land or Sea, that the same Officer commands two different Bodies, or the fame Pilot steers two Ships. Besides, the Good of the State requires that places and Favours shou'd be shar'd among many, in order to excite an Emulation among Men of Merit : Whereas Places heap'd upon the fame Subject, too often dazle him by so distinguish'd a Preference, and raise in others Jealousie, Heart-burnings, and Murmurs.

The second Defect remark'd by Aristotle in the Government of Carthage, was, that to arrive at the first Posts, such an Estate was requir'd besides Merit and Birth; by this Means, Poverty was thrown as an invincible Obstacle in the Way of the most fhining Merit unadorn’d with Wealth, which he thought was a great Evil in the Constitution. For in this Case, says he, Virtue being no Recommendation, and Money, by its Power to advance Men, carrying all before it, the Esteem which Riches are in, and a consequent Thirst of them, seize and corrupt the Minds of a whole Community ; add to

[ocr errors]

this, that Magistrates and Judges rising by Expence, seem to have a Right of reimbursing themselves out of their Employs.

THERE is not, I believe, any Instance in Antiquity to Thew that Employs either in the State or Courts of Justice were made venal. The Expence therefore, which Aristotle talks of to raise Men to Posts at Carthage, must be understood of Presents which were employ'd to procure the Suffrages of the Ele&tors, a Practice, as Polybius observes, very common at Carthage, where no sort of Gain was unreputable p. It is therefore no wonder that Arifotle condemns a Practice where Consequences, it was easy to see, might prove fatal to the Common- · wealth. • But if he pretended that the posts of Command and Honour ought to be equally accessible to the Rich and the Poor, as he seems to insinuate, his Sentiment is refuted by the general Praćtice of the wisest Republicks : Whose Opinion it has ever been, without any degrading Reflexions upon Poverty, that here the Preference ought to be given to Riches, because it is to be presum'd that a better Education fills Men with nobler Views, and places them more out of the Reach of Corruption and unworthy A&tions; and that the Situation of their Affairs uinites them more closely to the State for the Main-. tenance of Peace and Order, and the keeping at the greatest Distance from it, all Sedition and Rebellion.

ARISTOTLE, in the Conclusion of his Reflections upon the Republick of Carthage, is much pleas'd with a Custom in it of sending from Time to Time Colonies into different Parts, and thus procuring to its Citizens an honest Establishment. This Custom provided a Supply to the Necessities of the Poor, who are equally with the Rich, the Members of the State; and it discharg'd the City of Multi

• Παρα Καρχηδονίοις προς κέρδος και δεν αισχρον των ανηκόντων. : K


tudes of idle, lazy People which were its Disgrace, and often prov'd dangerous to it: It prevented Commotions and Troubles by a Removal of these Perfons who are commonly the Occasion of them, and who, uneasy under present Circumstances, are always ripe for Disturbance and Innovation.

it mait, the Gloryed in the Centres Eastward and


THAGE the first Source of its Wealth · and Power. COMMERCE was, properly speaking, the

Business of Carthage, the particular Object of its Industry, and its peculiar and predominant 'Character. It was the greatest Strength and the principal Support of that Commonwealth. In one word, it may be said that the Power, the Conquests, the Credit, the Glory of the Carthaginians flow'd from Commerce. Situated in the Centre of the Mediterranean, and stretching their Arms Eastward and Westward, they embrac'd, in the Extent of their Commerce, the whole known World, and carry'd it to the Coasts of Spain, of Mauritania, of Gaul, and beyond the Straits and Pillars of Hercules. They went every where to buy cheap the Superfluities of other Nations, which the Wants of others converted into Necessaries, and oblig'd them to purchase at the dearest Rates. From Egypt the Carthaginians fetch'd fine Linnen, Paper, Corn, Sails and Cables for Ships : From the Coasts of the Red Sea, Spices, Frankincense, Groceries, Perfumes, Gold, Pearls and precious Stones: From Tyrus and Phenicia, Purple and Scarlet, rich Stuffs, Tapestry, costly Furniture, and divers Works of most curious and artful Industry: In one word, they brought from different Countries every thing necessary or capable to contribute to Eafe, Luxury and the Delights of Life. They brought back from the Western Parts, in Exchange for Commodities carry'd thither, Iron, Tin, Lead and Copper: The Sale of all these Merchandizes enrich'd them at the Expence of all Nations, which they put under a sort of Contribution fo much the furer, as it was the more voluntary.

IN thus becoming the Fa£tors and Agents of all Nations, they made themselves Lords of the Sea, the Band which held East, West, and South together, and the necessary Canal of their Communication; so that Cartbage rose to be the common City of all the Nations which the Sea supported, and the Centre of their Commerce.

The most considerable Persons of the City were not asham'd of Traffick. They apply'd to it with a Care equal to that of the meanest Citizens, and their great Wealth made them not at all less in love with Diligence, Patience and Labour necessary to procure Accessions to it. To this was owing their Empire of the Sea, the Splendor of their Republick, their Ability to dispute it with Rome her self, and an Elevation of Power which cost the Romans a bloody and doubtful War of more than forty Year's Continuance to humble and subdue this haughty Rival. And even Rome triumphant thought Carthage was not to be entirely reduc'd any other Way than by depriving her of the Benefit of her Trade, which had so long enabled her to hold out. against all the Strength of that mighty Republick.

AFTER all, it is no wonder that Carthage, coming out of the greatest School of Traffick in the World, I mean Tyrus, shou'd have been crown'd with such rapid and constant Success. The very Veftels which conducted her Founders into Africk, serv'd them afterwards for the Convenience of Trade. They began Settlements upon the Coasts of Spain, in Ports open to their Disembarkation. The Conve.. :: niences and Facility of their first Settlements infpir'd them with the Thought of conquering these vast Regions; and in the End, New Carthage, or :

K 2


« FöregåendeFortsätt »