e was deemed so

inadequate to the guilt of adultery, that, if the criminal

returned to Italy, he might, by the express declaration of

Majorian, be slain with impunity. ^44

[Footnote 43: The whole edict (Novell. Majorian. tit. vi. p. 35)

is curious. "Antiquarum aedium dissipatur speciosa constructio;

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et ut aliquid reparetur, magna diruuntur. Hinc jam occasio

nascitur, ut etiam unusquisque privatum aedificium construens,

per gratiam judicum ..... praesumere de publicis locis

necessaria, et transferre non dubitet" &c. With equal zeal, but

with less power, Petrarch, in the fourteenth century, repeated

the same complaints. (Vie de Petrarque, tom. i. p. 326, 327.) If

I prosecute this history, I shall not be unmindful of the decline

and fall of the city of Rome; an interesting object to which any

plan was originally confined.]

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[Footnote 44: The emperor chides the lenity of Rogatian, consular

of Tuscany in a style of acrimonious reproof, which sounds almost

like personal resentment, (Novell. tit. ix. p. 47.) The law of

Majorian, which punished obstinate widows, was soon afterwards

repealed by his successor Severus, (Novell. Sever. tit. i. p.


While the emperor Majorian assiduously labored to restore

the happiness and virtue of the Romans, he encountered the arms

of Genseric, from his character and situation their most

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formidable enemy. A fleet of Vandals and Moors landed at the

mouth of the Liris, or Garigliano; but the Imperial troops

surprised and attacked the disorderly Barbarians, who were

encumbered with the spoils of Campania; they were chased with

slaughter to their ships, and their leader, the king's

brother-in-law, was found in the number of the slain. ^45 Such

vigilance might announce the character of the new reign; but the

strictest vigilance, and the m

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