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Calpurnius Bestia was sent with an army to Africa to punish the crime of

the Numidian prince. But Jugurtha had learned with what kind of weapons he

should contend in a war with Rome. He bribed Calpurnius and the legates who

accompanied them, and induced them to make a treaty of peace which by its

own terms was to be final; that is, not dependent on ratification by the

Senate and people. As for Numidia, it was granted to Jugurtha as the friend

and ally of the Romans.

Of course, this astounding piece of business was straightway canceled by

the Senate. The wrath of the popular assembly knew no bounds. The tribune

Memmius carried a resolution to the effect that Jugurtha should come to

Rome and divulge the methods which he had used to procure the treaty. The

king came, and was about to speak when he was prevented by the veto of the

tribune Baevius, whom he had just bribed to do that very thing. Meanwhile

Massivo, the son of Gulussa, arrived in the city, and preferred before the

Senate his claim to be king of Numidia. Jugurtha hired some assassins to

kill him. He then made his own escape from Rome, and looking back

exclaimed, "O venal city, about to perish if it can find a buyer!"