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UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE ANCIENT WORLD.

nor did it appear that there was any likelihood of success against the

illustrious rebel. Treachery came to the rescue. In B. C. 141 Variathus was

induced by fair promises to make peace. He was for the time declared to be

a "friend" of the Senate and Roman people; but the whole transaction was

for no other purpose than to put the great insurgent off his guard. In the

following year the consul suddenly renewed the war, and Variathus, at last

defeated in battle, was compelled to seek peace. While the conditions were

yet undecided he was assassinated by his own ambassadors, who had been

hired by the Roman consul Caepio to perform this finishing piece of supreme

villainy. Thus, in B. C. 139, was Rome set free from the terror which the

Lusitanian chieftain had so long inspired. Then she breathed more freely.

Before the overthrow of Variathus the Celtiberians had again (B. C. 143)

revolted and renewed the struggle for the overthrow of the Roman power in

Numantia. The consul, Metellus, was sent against them, and during the first

two campaigns gained several successes over the rebels. Afterwards the tide

turned, and the Romans were brought to great straits in a series of

defeats. Caius Hostilius Mancinus was compelled, in order to save himself

and his army, to sign a treaty recognizing the independence of Numantia.

The Roman Senate was enraged at this act, and repudiated the compact.

Hostilius was taken by an officer and redelivered in chains to the

Numantians, but they refused to take personal vengeance on their recent

foe, and permitted him to return to Rome. It was thus that alleged

barbarism set an example of humanity to be wasted on her who had none.

After the Numantine war had continued for nine years Scipio Africanus was

sent out to bring it to an end. (1) He found the Roman army in Spain

demoralized and set himself at once to the restoration of discipline. The

horde of hangers-on, who for profit or license had infested the camp, were

expelled and everything speedily brought to a military standard. He then

advanced to Numantia and undertook the reduction of the place by siege.

Never was the heroism of a people better illustrated in defense of their

country than in the conduct of the Arevaci fighting for their last

stronghold. They held out until famine came to the aid of war. Then they

ate the bodies of the dead and then yielded.

The whole population, with the exception of fifty of the principal

citizens, who were reserved for Scipio's triumph, were sold as slaves. What

remained of Numantia was leveled to the earth. Resistance to the will and

purpose of Rome ceased throughout the peninsula. Colonies of Romans-

adventurers, merchants, land-speculators-came in like a flood. Latin was

heard at first in the sea-coast communities, and then in the towns of the

far interior. Spain was Romanized, and the new order was accepted from the

Pyrenees to the pillars of Hercules. As to Scipio, to whose military genius

must be attributed the final conquest of the country, he returned to Rome

to be honored with the title of Numantinus, in addition to Africanus, by

which he was already distinguished for his triumph over Carthage.

In the same year (B. C. 129) which witnessed the final pacification of

Spain, the first Roman province was organized in Asia Minor. The

circumstances attending this event were anomalous. Attalus III., king of

Pergamus, who for a long time had been entitled a friend by the Senate,

died in B. C. 133, leaving no heir to his throne. In his will he bequeathed

his dominions to the people of Rome. In the mean time a certain

Aristonicus, a natural son of Eumenes, father of the late king, advanced

his claim to the Pergamine crown, and endeavored to maintain his right by

arms. The movement, however, ended in a fiasco. Aristonicus was defeated

and captured, and the will of Attalus was carried into effect. Pergamus was

organized into a pro-consular government under the title of the Province of

Asia.

One of the most marked results of the great

___________________________________ 1 In the army which Scipio led against

Numantia were three young officers who were destined in a short time-though

in different fields of action-to play an important part in the great drama

of Rome. These were Caius Marius, one of the great leaders in the Civil

War; Jugurtha, grandson of Masinissa and present ruler of Numidia, and

Tiberius Gracchus, the great commoner of his times.