Scipio and Syphax

Silius Italicus Punka 16.229-257

And already the Dawn, going out from the edge of her threshold, was bringing forth a new day for the world, and the sun's horses were going up to the yokes in [their] stables, and he himself had not yet mounted [his] chariot, but the sea was glowing red with flames that would soon burst forth; Scipio got out of bed (lit., removed [his] body from bed) and, with a calm face, went quickly to the threshold of the Massylian king.

The latter observed the native custom of rearing the offspring of lions and driving away ferocity and rage from [lion] cubs by feeding [them]. Then too he was caressing [their] tawny necks and manes with [his] hand and, unafraid, was stroking the wild mouths of the playing [animals]. After he heard that the Dar-danian leader was present, he put on a cloak and his left [hand] carried the distinguished symbol of the ancient kingdom. [His] temples were encircled with a white headband, and according to custom a sword was fastened to [his] side.

Then he summoned [Scipio] into the building, and in secluded rooms the guest sat down with the scepter-bearing king in equal honor.

Then the subduer of the Spanish land began to speak first with these [words], "My first and greatest concern, after conquering the peoples of the Pyrenees, was to go in haste (lit., hurrying) to your kingdom, O Syphax of venerable scepter, nor did the wild sea delay me with its intervening water. I do not seek [things] difficult or dishonorable for your kingdom: join your heart unreservedly to the Latins and [as] an ally share in [their] success. The Massylian peoples and land extending to the Syrtes and ancestral power over wide fields would not bring you more honor than Roman courage, joined [to you] by sure faith, and the esteem of the Laurentine people. Why should I mention the other [considerations] ? Of course, none of the gods [is] favorable to anyone who has harmed Dardanian arms."

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