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75

(1887) [MARC] Author: Viktor Rydberg Translator: Alfred Corning Clark With: Hans Anton Westesson Lindehn
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THE ROMAN EMPERORS IN MARBLE. 75
tion of the Julii from Alba Longa, and of the Porcii from
Tusculum. He reminded them of Equans, Hernicans,
Etruscans and Lucans, and so many other peoples Rome
had subjugated, only to penetrate them with the Roman
spirit and cultivation, and fuse them into one with itself.
The posterity of these races now bore the Roman name
and loved Rome as their fatherland. He showed how
states like Athens and Sparta had vanished, because they
held too strictly to the principle of blood ; while Rome,
on the contrary, had won dominion of the world, because
it strove for the propagation of its culture, more than for
the superiority of any one race of people. " Fathers in
the assembly," so he ended his speech, " all that is held
ancient now, was once new ; after the patrician officers
came the plebeian, after them the Latin, after them,
again, officers of the other Italian races. Even this race
shall win the right of age ; and that which we now de-
fend by examples from history, shall one day itself, too,
stand among history’s examples.’*
Not always did his orations in the senate deal with
such weighty political questions. As already stated, the
emperor meddled in everything with which he was famil-
iar, and no subject under deliberation seemed to him un-
worthy an attack on the part of the head of the state.
When the senate one day took in hand a question about
some change in the ordinances for the poorer class of inns
and public houses, the emperor presented himself in the
curia, and as held, on good grounds, that none of the as-
sembled fathers were better acquainted with those places
than he was himself—who had so often brought his mid-
day meal from them, had even crossed the threshold- to
play at backgammon with their frequenters, by the

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