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Italicus about a hundred years afterwards, as also his villa, called Academia, on the bay of Baiae. Martial alludes to this in an epigram xi. 48): ( ) Silius haec magni celebrat monumenta Maronis, Jugera facundi qui Ciceronis habet. Haeredem dominumque sui tumulive larisve; Non alium mallet, nec Maro, nec Cicero.
“Silius, who possesses the property that once belonged to the eloquent Cicero, celebrates these funeral rites at the tomb of Virgil. There is no one that either Virgil or Cicero would have preferred to heir his property, or to be the guardian of his tomb and lands.” Speaking of the two rivers, Silius says (viii. 401):
At qui Fibreno miscentem flumina Lirim
“But the inhabitants of Arpinum, who dwell on the banks of the sulphureous Liris, mingling its waters with the Fibrenus, and gliding silently to the sea.” The waters of the Fibrenus I find to be equally cold as in the time of Cicero, and it arises no doubt from their being supplied by subterranean springs. It rises near a village called La Posta, and, indeed, is now known to the inhabitants as Fiume della Posta. It passes through a small limpid lake, about a mile in circumference, and some have accounted for the icy nature of its waters by maintaining that the waters of the Lacus Fucinus are conveyed underground to the Fibrenus. I had spent a pleasant day on the banks of these rivers, and had now to think of my night's lodging. The muleteer, with whom I had made an arrangement, met me at the church of S. Domenico Abbate, and I hurried on to the city of Sora, which is situated on a plain, and washed to the east and south by the waters of the Liris, spanned by two good stone bridges. Here I found a tolerable night's lodging, and in the morning examined the remains of Sora. It is overlooked by a lofty rock, the summit of which is crowned with an old ruined castle. In the piazza there is the following inscription, which alludes to a fact mentioned by Frontinus, that a colony was placed here by Augustus:
L. FIRMIO . L. F.
There is a tradition that St. Julian suffered martyrdom here, and that at the moment it took place the Temple of Serapis fell to the ground. It was situated where the church of St. Julian is now placed, and some of the stones of the ancient temple are shown in various parts of the city. There are many sepulchral inscriptions scattered over the city, generally in an imperfect state. The following are perfect:
This is a curious collection of names, some of which are known to us, and others appear nowhere except in this inscription. Istiminia and Dorcha are unknown. Naevius was a draper (vestiarius), and the stone was erected by the freed women (libertae) of Diogenes to Naevius and the various members of his family. The nearest approach to Dorcha is the . of Acts (ix. 39), “showing the coats and garments which Dorcas made.” Here are two historical names of great fame on one little stone, carrying the mind back to the early times of Greece and Rome:
There must have been a colony of Greeks at Sora from the Greek names that appear on the sepulchral stones: thus we have :
The only Philargyrus known to history is the old scholiast on Virgil, who seems to have lived in the reign of Valentinian. There is an Arrius, who was an intimate friend of Cicero (in Vatin. 12; pro Mil. 17), and may have been of this same family. Here, again, we have Greek names on two inscriptions in the walls of a house near the chapel of La Madonna della Stella :
C. CALIDIO . L OPPLA. C. L. DIONYSIA EPAPRODITO SIBI. ET CALIDIA. L. C. L. L. WENELIO . T. F. ROM. AWGINI FIERI IWSSIT.
I had now reached a point where I had to determine in what direction I should bend my steps. Should I go forward to Lacus Fucinus, or pass over to the Papal States? I felt that a selection of places to be visited must be made, as the summer was advancing, and I had little more than two months at my command for this kind of travelling. My passport bore that I was to leave the kingdom of Naples by Aquila, which was far to the north, and I was by no means certain that the officers of government would allow me to leave in any other direction. I resolved, however, to make the attempt, and if they turned me back, I had no doubt that I would be able to carry out my intention in spite of them. An active pedestrian as I am, with no luggage except what I can carry in my knapsack, can set a government at ão. in such matters, and I accordingly fixed to proceed from Isola to Castelluccio, which I knew to
be the Neapolitan frontier station. If I were questioned why I had taken this route, my answer would be that I was on my way to visit Casamari, said to be the site of a villa of the celebrated Caius Marius. I returned therefore to Isola to pass the night, and in the morning I was to bid adieu to the kingdom of Naples, where I had spent many happy days, and had received much kindness from all classes of the community.
I LEFT Isola at an early hour with a muleteer to proceed to Castelluccio, the last place in the Neapolitan dominions where I should be in the power of the police. I resolved to be in every way submissive to the authorities, and try if good humour might carry me through. At the worst, I had only to pretend that I would obey their orders, and, going back a certain distance, leave my muleteer, and trust myself to the chance of making my way across the hills to the other side of the frontier. I made up my mind to run the gauntlet, and, with such a wide, unprotected frontier as this must be, I did not doubt that I would carry my point, even if I could find no peasant willing to be my guide.
Castelluccio is situated on a hill, with an extensive view to the east and south, surrounded with walls in a ruinous state. On reaching it, I presented myself with my passport, and stated at once that I was on my way to Casamari to visit the ruins. They said that my passport did not grant this permission, as I ought to proceed on to Aquila, but they would not throw any difficulties in my way. I found an intelligent priest, who was particularly civil, and offered to point out what was worthy of notice. There are remains, said to be of a monastery, at a spot called San Lorenzo, and near this a piece of ancient road paved with large square stones—no doubt part of the Via Latina, leading to Arpinum. Here, too, is the arch of an ancient bridge at a spot called S. Paolo. The following imperfect inscription was found in the vicinity:
It is not at all unlikely that Diphilus, who erected this stone to his affectionate daughter, is the architect whose name passed into a proverb, “Diphilo tardior”—“Slower than Diphilus”—whom Cicero mentions (ad Q.F. iii. 1) as the architect of his brother's villa at Arcanum. After resting a short time, I bade adieu to my clerical friend, and moved forward two miles to the frontier station of the Papal States, and here I had to show my English passport, and was received with great civility. I now breathed freely, as I knew all my difficulties respecting passports were over. Foreigners are allowed to go backwards and forwards in the Papal States without the disagreeable surveillance to which
I have been so long accustomed, that it now appears to me as a matter of course.
Two miles farther on I reached Casamari, the supposed site of a villa of Caius Marius; but if it were so, I cannot say that I admire his taste, as the position is devoid of everything that gives beauty to the landscape. There is little wood to be seen, and at the present period of the year there is a glare of sunshine, which is disagreeable to the eye. I could see no ancient remains, though the following fragment of an inscription was found in this vicinity in 1780:
COS. VII. TRIB.
This may very possibly refer to Caius Marius, who was consul for the seventh time, B.C. 86, along with Cinna, the same year that he died. As I have promised to confine myself to the byways of Italy, I shall pass lightly over my proceedings for the next ten days. I traversed an uninteresting country to Frusino, which I found situated on the road which I had left on proceeding along the banks of the Liris to visit the birthplace of Cicero. I was now on the great road to Rome, and access to the little Volscian towns of Frusino, Ferentinum, Anagnia, Praeneste, all placed along the slopes of the Apennines, on the borders of Latium, is easy to the least active of travellers. Frosinone presents little to attract attention, except the picturesque costume of the women and the remains of a small amphitheatre, which are visible in the plain below. In the city itself there are no relics of antiquity. Its rocky situation and the hardy character of its inhabitants are alluded to by Silius Italicus (viii. 398, xii. 532), and Juvenal (iii. 223) notices it as a country town where you may get houses at a cheap rate. It is curious to see how the poet contrasts the quiet life of such a spot with the noisy tumult of Rome, with its games and plays:
Sipotes avelli Circensibus, optima Sora',
“If you can tear yourself away from the games in the circus, you may procure a first-rate house at Sora, Fabrateria, or Frusino for the same money that you are now paying yearly for your dark hole. Here you will have your little garden, here a well so shallow that it requires no rope and bucket, whence you can easily water your tender plants. Live there enamoured of the rake, the dresser of your trim garden, from which you could supply a feast to a hundred Pythagoreans.” It is interesting to find that nature remains much the same as Juvenal describes it towards the end of the first century, and that house rent is as low at present as it was then. The streets are narrow, like all Italian towns, and the Rocca commands a fine prospect of the surrounding country. Some of the houses have their little patches of garden, and the brevis puteus—“the shallow well”—is still there to water without trouble the sprouting plants. Along all the hills in this neighbourhood you have small springs trickling out of the ground, as you might expect from the nature of the rock.
Ferentino is on much higher ground, and possesses a greater number of ancient remains than is usually found in these small towns. The walls are of Cyclopian structure, and can be traced completely round the hill. Some of the limestone blocks are polygonal, and others rectangular. The finest specimen is near the gate called Porta Sanguinaria. The bishop's palace, the Vescovado, is particularly worthy of examination; it has been built evidently on the foundations of an ancient building, being of a very massive character, while the upper part of the building is comparatively modern. In its walls we find several inscriptions, in which the names of Hirtius and Lollius are mentioned as having repaired the walls of the town at their own expense. This Hirtius is, no doubt, the son of Aulus Hirtius, consul B.C. 43, the intimate friend of Julius Caesar, and who took an active part in the stirring events of these times. Lollius was probably a connexion of Marcus Lollius, consul B.c. 21, who was defeated by some German tribes B. c. 16, and who is mentioned with commendation by Horace (Od. iv. 9):
Windex awara fraudis et abstinens
“The punisher of those who rob the public treasury, and never seduced
by the charms of gold, that misleads so many.” In a small chapel of S. Giovanni Evangelista is a stone, now used as a
baptismal font, and on which is the following inscription:
CORNELIAE SALONINAE SANCTISSIME
The inhabitants of Ferentinum erect this stone to Cornelia Salonina Augusta, the wife of Gallienus, who reigned A.D. 260–268. She was the mother of Saloninus, who was put to death in Colonia Agrippina by Postumus, A.D. 259. It is interesting when we fall in with historic names, and are able to trace something of their story. Zonaras states that she witnessed with her own eyes the death of her husband before the walls of Milan in A.D. 268.
Gallienus is here called “unconquered.” We know from history that his character was most contemptible; he was only remarkable for his skill in the art of dress, and was deeply versed in the science of good eating.
T. most interesting inscription is one hewn on the natural rock, called by the peasantry “La Fata”—“the fairy”—recording the deeds of munificence of Aulus Quinctilius Pal. Priscus to the inhabitants of Ferentinum, which give us a curious insight into the customs of Roman country life. Who this munificent gentleman was we know not, as his name is unknown to history; but his fellow-citizens in gratitude ordered a statue to be erected to his honour in any part of the forum that he might choose. He left them three farms—“Ceponianum, Roianum, Mamianum”—and the site of two of these is pointed out to us by the names, “Roana and Cipollara,” which they still retain. The proceeds of these farms were to be distributed on his birthday for all time coming