BOOK V - The Library of History

Bibliotheca historica
The first five books
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BOOK V







Page 193 and Toyl, they reap but very little Fruit, scarce sufficient to supply their Necessities. Daily Toil therefore, and scarcity of Food, is the reason they are so Lean, and nothing but Sinews. The Women share in these Laborious Tasks as much as the Men: These People hunt often, and take many wild Beasts, by which they supply the want of Bread. Being therefore accustom'd to range the Snowy Mountains, and climb the rough and craggy Hills, their Bodies are very strong and brawny. Some of them for want of Corn and other Fruits, drink Water; and feed upon Locusts and wild Beasts, and cram their Bellies with such Herbs as the Land there produces; their Country being altogether a Stranger to those desirable Deities, Ceres and Bacchus.

In the Night they lie in the Fields, and very seldom so much as in the meanest Huts or Cottages; but most commonly in hollow Rocks, and natural Caves, wheresoever they judge there may be a convenient shelter for them; and much after this manner they do in all other things, living after the old fordid and barbarous manner.

In short, the Women here are as strong as Men, and the Men as Beasts; and therefore it's reported, that in their Wars, sometimes the biggest Men among the Gauls, have been foyl'd and slain in a single Combat upon a Challenge, by a little slender Ligurian.

They are lighter arm'd than the Romans, for they defend themselves with a long Shield, made after the fashion of the Gauls, and their Cassocks are girt about them with a Belt: They wear wild Beasts Skins, and carry a Sword of an ordinary length: But some of them conversing much with the Romans, have chang'd their ancient manner of arming themselves, and have imitated their Lords and Masters. They are bold and daring, not only in times of War, but upon all other occasions. For in their Traffick they sail through the Sardonian and African Seas, exposing themselves to great Hazards in little Skiffs, less than the ordinary Ships, without the help of any other Vessels; in which notwithstanding they'l boldly (to admiration) venture to weather out the greatest Storms and Tempests.

Now it remains we should speak of the Tyrrhenians: They were anciently very valiant, and injoy'd a large Country, and built many Famous Cities; and having a great Navy, were long Masters at Sea, and call'd the Sea lying under Italy the Tyrrhenian Sea, after their own Name. Amongst other things wherewith they furnish'd their Land Army, they found out the most useful Instrument for War, the Trumpet, which from them is call'd Tyrrhena. To the Generals of their Army they gave these Badges of Honour; they allow'd them an Ivory Throne, and a Purple Robe. They were the first that invented Portico's or Galleries to their Houses, to avoid the trouble and noise of a croud of Servants, and other Hangers-on; most of which being imitated by the Romans, and brought into their Commonwealth, were afterwards improv'd to a great degree of Curiosity. They gave themselves much to Learning, especially to the study of natural Philosophy; and amongst natural Events, mightily intent (above all others) to find out the nature of Thunder and Lightning: And therefore to this Day, they are admir'd by all Princes all the World over, who make use of them to interpret all the Prodigious effects of Thunder.

They injoy a very rich Country, and well Till'd and Improv'd; and so reap abundance of all sorts of Fruits, not only for their necessary Food, but for Pleasure and Delight.

They had their Tables spread twice a Day, furnish'd with all sorts of Varieties, even to Luxury and Excess.

Their Foot-Carpets are interwoven with Flower-works, and abundance of Silver Cups, and great variety of them they make use of. Of Houshold Servants they have great numbers, some of whom are very beautiful, and others exceeding rich in Apparel, above the Condition of Servants.

Both Servants and Freemen have several Apartments allow'd them, compleatly furnish'd with all manner of Adornments. At last they threw off their former Sobriety, and now live an idle and debaucht Life, in Riot and Drunkenness; so



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