« ZurückWeiter »
the name of Camboblascon, to whom he gives the addition of Coritus, as a title of dignity, making him father of Dardanus and Jasius ; and further telling us very particularly of the faction between these brethren, which grew to such heat, that finally Dardanus killed his brother, and thereupon fed into Samothrace. The obscurity of the history gives leave to Annius of saying what he list. I that love not to use such liberty, will forbear to determine any thing herein. But if Dardanus were the son of Jupiter, it must have been of some elder Jupiter than the father of those that lived about the war of Troy. So it is likewise probable, that Atlas, the father of Electra, was rather an Italian than an African, which also is the opinion of f Boccace. For (as hath often been said) there were many Jupiters, and many of almost every name of the gods; but it was the custom to ascribe to some one the acts of the rest, with all belonging to them. Therefore I will not greatly trouble myself with making any narrow search into these fabulous antiquities, but set down the pedigree according to the general fame ; allowing to Teucer such parents as Diodorus gives, because others give him none, and carrying the line of Dardanus in manner following:
f Boccace de Gen. Deor. l. 4. C. 31.
Concerning the beginning and continuance of the Trojan kingdom, with the length of every king's reign, I have chosen good authors to be my guides; that in a history, whereon depends the most ancient computation of times among the Greeks, I might not follow uncertainties, ill cohering with the consent of writers, and general passage of things elsewhere done. And first for the destruction of Troy, which was of greater note than any accident befalling that city whilst it stood, it is reckoned by & Diodorus to be 780 years more ancient than the beginning of the 94th olympiad. Whereas therefore 372 did pass between the beginning of the olympiads and the first year of the 94th, it is manifest that the remainder of 780 years, that is, 408 years, went between the destruction of Troy and the first institution of those games by Iphitus, if the authority of h Diodorus be good proof; who elsewhere tells us, that the return of the Heraclidæ, which was eighty years after the fall of Troy, was 328 years before the first olympiad.
Hereunto agrees the authority of i Dionysius Halicarnasseus, who placing the foundation of Rome in the first of the seventh olympiad, that is, four and twenty years after the beginning of those games, accounts it 432 later than the fall of Troy. k Solinus in express words makes the institution of the olympiads by Iphitus, whom he calleth Iphiclus, 408 years later than the destruction of Troy. The sum is easily collected by necessary inference out of divers other places in the same book. Hereunto doth · Eusebius, reckoning exclusively, agree: and Eratosthenes (as he is cited by m Clemens Alexandrinus) makes up out of many particulars the same total sum, wanting but one year, as reckoning likewise exclusively.
The other collections of divers writers that are cited by Clemens in the same place, do neither cohere any way, nor depend upon any collateral history, by which they may be verified. & Diod. I. 14.
| Euseb. de Præp. Evang. 1. 10. h Diod, in Præf.
C. 3. i Dionys. Halic. Antiq. 1. 2.
* Clem. Alex. Strom. 1, 1. k Solin. Polyhist. c. 2.
The destruction of Troy being in the year before the olympiads four hundred and eight, we must seek the continuance of that, from the beginning to the end, out of Eusebius, who leads us from Dardanus onwards through the reigns of four kings, by the space of two hundred and five and twenty years; and after of Priamus, with whom also at length it ended. As for the time which passed under Laomedon, we are fain to do as others have done before us, and take it upon trust from Annius's authors ; believing Manetho so much the rather, for that in his account of the former king's reigns, and of Priamus, he is found to agree with Eusebius, which may give us leave to think that Annius hath not herein corrupted him. But in this point we need not to be very scrupulous: for seeing that no history or account of time depends upon the reigns of the former kings, but only upon the ruin of the city under Priamus, it may suffice that we are careful to place that memorable accident in the due year. · True it is, that some objections, appearing weighty, may be alleged in maintenance of different computations, which, with the answers, I purposely omit, as not willing to dispute of those years wherein the Greeks knew no good form of a year; but rather to make narration of the actions which were memorable, and acknowledged by all writers, whereof this destruction of Troy was one of the most renowned.
The first enterprise that was undertaken by general consent of all Greece, was the last war of Troy, which hath been famous even to this day for the numbers of princes and valiant commanders there assembled ; the great battles fought with variable success; the long endurance of the siege; the destruction of that great city; and the many colonies planted in sundry countries, as well by the remainder of the Trojans, as by the victorious Greeks after their unfortunate return. All which things, with innumerable circumstances of especial note, have been delivered unto posterity by the excellent wits of many writers, especially by the poems of that great Homer, whose verses have given immortality to the action, which might else perhaps have been buried in oblivion, among other worthy deeds done both before and since that time. For it is true which Horace saith :
Vixere fortes ante Agamemnona
Multi, sed omnes illachrimabiles
Nocte : carent quia vate sacro.
Ere Agamemnon: yet lie all opprest
For with no sacred poet were they blest.
Yet so it is, that whilst these writers have with strange fables, or (to speak the best of them) with allegories far strained, gone about to enlarge the commendations of those noble undertakers; they have both drawn into suspicion that great virtue which they sought to adorn, and filled after-ages with almost as much ignorance of the history, as admiration of the persons. Wherefore it is expedient that we seek for the knowledge of such actions in histories ; learning their qualities who did manage them, of poets, in whose works are both profit and delight, yet small profit to those which are delighted overmuch ; but such as can either interpret their fables, or separate them from the naked truth, shall find matter in poems not unworthy to be regarded of historians. For those things excepted which are gathered out of Homer, there is very little, and not without much disagreement of authors, written of this great war. All writers consent with Homer, that the rape of Helen by Paris, the son of Priamus, was the cause of taking arms; but how he was hereunto emboldened, it is doubtful.
SECT. II. Of the rape of Helen ; and strength of both sides for the war.
HERODOTUS fetcheth the cause of this rape from very far, saying, that whereas the Phænicians had ravished Io, and carried her into Egypt; the Greeks, to be revenged on the barbarians, did first ravish Europa, whom they brought