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The Jugurthine War and the Conspiracy of Catiline

3.82  ·  Rating Details ·  1,760 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
The Jugurthine War Contains the history of the memorable year 63. This book describes Catiline as the deliberate foe of law, order and morality. It dwells upon the feebleness of the senate and aristocracy. Full description
Paperback, 240 pages
Published February 28th 1964 by Penguin Classics (first published -63)
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Community Reviews

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This is one of those ancient works that arguably parallels our own times as some argue the things that happened within are evident in our own recent times and a sign of a possible crisis to come (though I would argue Rome went on for hundreds of years after the events in this book). This work focuses on two events during the later years of the Roman Republic: the Catiline Conspiracy (basically a young wanna be senator doesn't get elected and resents it and raises a secret army to take it yet get ...more
J.G. Keely
Jan 15, 2010 J.G. Keely rated it liked it
Sallust had a long political career, siding with the populists, who would eventually become the triumvirate of Caesar, Crassus, and Pompey. In many ways, Sallust's history resembles Caesar's memoirs twenty years later, but Caesar's biases are much more difficult to ferret out. If Sallust had been a more clever man, we might have taken his word for it and entered his works as pure history, but his bias is so evident that we can almost fill out the rest of the story by it's absence.

There are fairl
Mar 25, 2012 Jim rated it liked it
Shelves: history, ancient-rome
Through some strange quirk, Sallust is one of the few ancient Roman historians whose two major works have come down to us more or less intact. I had read The Jugurthine War some eight years ago, and I finally decided to read The Conspiracy of Catiline.

While Sallust is a journeyman historian, very much like Xenophon compared to Herodotus and Thucydides, he cannot give Tacitus or Livy much of a run for their sestercii. It is interesting to see Catiline from another viewpoint other than Cicero's,
David Sarkies
Jul 17, 2015 David Sarkies rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Roman History Buffs
Recommended to David by: University
Shelves: history
Two stories from the Roman Republic
8 March 2011

I quite like books written by ancient historians, though we must remember the purposes of the ancient historians are a little different to modern historians (though I would argue that it is not all that different). The editor argued that ancient historians tended to have different purposes, though all historians, I believe, will approach a period in history, or, as in Sallust's case, certain events within history, to not only tell a story but for t
Jul 04, 2016 Tony rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
I had not read any of Sallust’s histories before, so I was surprised at how contemporary-sounding they were. Of course, it might have been the translation, but I suspect that it was more a reflection of the author’s true style. These are what I would call ‘readable’ histories of periods in Roman history. They deal with both the actual battles of the time and the politics behind the conflicts occurring mainly on the Afric
Jan 24, 2011 Heather rated it really liked it
Sallust writes as a moral historian. He sees Rome's grandeur as the "good old days" of the Republic which have been ruined by leisure and luxury. It is refreshing to a modern reader interested in history to find history that does not purport merely to set out dry, objective facts, but to record history to some end.

This very quality is also what makes Sallust sometimes laugh-out-loud funny, though. I took to writing in the margins of my book "jab!" whenever Sallust brought this theme into his wri
Jul 07, 2015 Matt rated it liked it
The Jugurthine War is filled with good old Roman populist rhetoric and war heroism but I can make heads or tails of the Conspiracy of Catiline so I give it a mediocre rating.
M. Milner
The last years of the Roman Republic were a pretty wild time. Casear was running his army through Gaul, Pompey was battling out in the East and at home, there was discontent and riots. Two of the most interesting moments care rather early in the late period and were both covered by the same author in two short monographs.

Sallust was a senator and governor in these years. According to legend, he was wildly corrupt and made a killing before being asked to resign, when he retired to a private life
Gijs Grob
Aug 17, 2012 Gijs Grob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gelezen in de Nederlandse vertaling van Vincent Hunink

Rome in verval - De samenzwering van Catilina
Geschiedschrijving van de dramatische samenzwering van de gewetenloze senator Catilina, die in 63 v. Chr. de macht wil grijpen, maar wiens opstand door consul Cicero verijdeld wordt.

Het geheel begint nogal warrig (door gebrek aan context en een enorme hoeveelheid namen), maar krijgt gaandeweg momentum om dramatisch te eindigen met twee meeslepende (door Sallustius zelf verzonnen) redevoeringen van
Sep 11, 2009 Peregrino rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
Siendo uno de los grandes historiadores romanos, la lectura de Salustio se empequeñece ante la fuerza y la legitimidad de las crónicas de Julio César en su Guerra de las Galias. Salustio cuenta en este libro dos historias, una contemporánea a él, y la otra de oídas. Son curiosos los juicios morales que hace al principio de sus relatos, si se contrastan con su vida. Salustio se convierte en historiador después de haber intrigado y de haberse enriquecido en la vida política. No es una mala jubilac ...more
Julian Meynell
Dec 23, 2015 Julian Meynell rated it liked it
I have been on an ancient historians bender recently. If we judge Sallust by the standards of his fellows he is clearly one of the weakest, but so far as I can see nothing bad managed to survive the dark ages to come down to us from ancient Greece or Rome. The book is worth reading as a result, but is hardly the place to start.

Really the book is two short monographs on two important, but not very important incidents in the history of the Roman Republic. One of these monographs is on the war with
Luka Ekhvaia
Jan 06, 2016 Luka Ekhvaia rated it liked it
This Book is mean for everyone who is addicted to the history of Roman Empire. Not withstanding that book is soaked with a lot of historical warrior and place names it's quite naive to navigate and become a part of it. You don't have to be the specialist of this field to comprehend the whole picture.

The Conspiracy of Cataline is much more focused on the internal politics and the nature of civil society, meanwhile The Jugurthine War is vastly concentrated on external politics and the art of war.
Nov 18, 2014 Nemo rated it liked it
Shelves: greco-roman, history
With a few changes in names, the whole story of "The Jugurthine War" can perhaps be transplanted from 110 BC Rome to the 20th century, or any other period in history, when there are global/central super powers, local tyrants/warlords and puppet governments.

"The Conspiracy of Catiline" is a tale of political intrigue and class struggle instigated by lust-crazed individuals. It complements Cicero's account of the event in his orations "Against Cataline".

Sallust explains, from a rather cynical pers
Feb 04, 2014 Paul rated it really liked it
A fascinating narrative of the war against the illegitimate son of King Micipsa of Numidia through the campaigns of Metellus & Marius....which eventually proved victorious for Rome....although Rome failed to include Numidia into the Republic until much later. This war occurred in the late stages of the Roman Republic prior to Caesar, and Sallust's account of this war clearly shows his opinions concerning the decline of the Republic. It is perhaps more of a commentary on the decline of Roman ...more
Aaron Crofut
Mar 19, 2013 Aaron Crofut rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history, rome, war
An interesting read worth more than most textbooks on all of Rome. The Catiline Conspiracy has clear modern parallels to Occupy Wall Street, as does Rome's deteriorating republic and virtues, the ever present conflict between the rich and poor, though with some important differences (most important being how such divergence in wealth was created). The legitimacy of the movement, or of one similar, would be a great question to focus a class on, as would the legitimacy of Cicero's reaction.

The Ju
C. Rufinus
Fascinating and timeless. Many of Sallust's imprecations against Rome and the Romans could just as easily be made today against Washington and the American politicians. The greed and corruption which seemed to be the very purpose of high office in Rome is comparable to that of America, with its unending line of lobbyists and election contributions.
The first history - that on the Jugurthine War - was preferable, with better narrative style, more information given, and a more clear portrait of th
John Cain
Sep 05, 2010 John Cain rated it liked it
This is really two short books. The Jururthine War fills in a gap of knowledge that I had regarding the aftermath of the Thrid Punic War. Also, it helps explain how Marius rose to power. The Conspiracy of Catiline is referred to in greater detail by Cicero.
The notes and introductions tot he two books point out that Sallust may have been mistaken about some dates and events. Roman historians in general seem to be ofetn crontradicted by modern historians. There is a powerful speech by Caesar in f
Alexander Kennedy
Dec 04, 2015 Alexander Kennedy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rome
This was a very good narrative of the conspiracy of Catiline. Hutchinson draws mainly on the accounts presented by Cicero and Sallust. He does an excellent job of interrogating his sources and uncovering their biases to help present a more balanced view of Catiline. I also like that he did not view the death of Catiline as the end of the struggle. It is also scary to see how the situation in Rome at this time somewhat parallels the U.S. right now with many disgruntled people out of work, street ...more
Matt Shoen
Sep 13, 2012 Matt Shoen rated it really liked it
Sallust is an interesting writer to look at the final days of the Roman Republic, in his writing the senate is discussed as much as Jugurtha and Catiline. Of the two I enjoyed the Jugurthine War more than the Conspiracy of Catiline, it seemed to be more coherent honestly. While Sallust's history is reasonable the best aspect of both stories are the ways Sallust connects events back to Rome. Additionally, the debate between Caesar and Cato about the conspirators fates is fascinating, and Sallust ...more
Petr Zajíček
Jan 14, 2016 Petr Zajíček rated it really liked it
Shelves: antiquity
Small, but well crafted masterpiece of Roman historiography. I have enjoyed reading about particular events of late Roman republic. Sallust managed to write a text that creates a living image of aristocratic members of the Senate and their approach towards the State and non-nobles. Caesar's speech is a highlight of the text and it deserves to be compared with contemporary political speeches. I can only recommend the book to anyone who is interested to Roman history, literature and politics. This ...more
Dec 03, 2008 Gavin rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
Two at first glance apparently disparate episodes in the history of Rome. Separated in time by a century or so, these two events have marked similarities. Both were crises for the Roman Republic, the latter shortly before the Roman state became an empire.

For anyone interested in Roman history this, I would suggest, is a must read.
Oct 05, 2012 bkwurm rated it it was ok
Given that the Jugurthine war takes place before the Catiline one, I did not understand why the author chose to have the account of the Catiline war before the account of the Jugurthine war. But both accounts would have been, in my view, greatly helped if maps had been included.
Jan 26, 2011 Noah rated it really liked it
Shelves: latin
Whereas his contemporary Cicero is a great retoric, Livius a great stylist, Cato a great observer and Plinius a wise man, Sallust is just decrying the trends of his time and pushing his political agenda. Decent historic work - but not in comparison to the masterworks created at the same time.
Apr 27, 2008 Ainsley rated it really liked it
Sallust has the virtue of being a near contemporary of the subjects of his history. (he died in 35 BC), and wrote his account of the Cateline Conspiricy and the Jugurthine War soon after Caesar's death. This edition comes with a useful introduction and notes by S.A.Handford.
Classics Fan
May 10, 2013 Classics Fan rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed The Catiline Conspiracy, especially the connections Sallust draws between luxury, greed, and social decay. Jurgathine War was okay. It had more action, but I didn't find it as insightful. Both histories had some great speeches.
Oct 30, 2011 Matt rated it it was amazing
This was actually a great book, especially if you are a fan of the time period. Take everything that the Romans write with a grain of salt, but overall very readable.
Jul 30, 2010 Jeremy rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
Very engaging for Roman history fans. Full of useful food for thought from one dying republic to one in deep trouble.
May 26, 2007 John rated it really liked it
The speeches of Caesar and Cato in "The Conspiracy of Cataline" are a "must read" for anyone interested in history, political philosophy or rhetoric.
Apr 20, 2008 Patrick\ rated it really liked it
How did Jugurtha do it? What a military mind for a non-Roman from the backwoods of North Africa. And like the Romans, he could never keep his word - until dead, that is.
Très intéressant. Salluste à la chic pour capter immédiatement l’attention du lecteur, avec une écriture serrée et efficace.
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Gaius Sallustius Crispus (86-34), better known as 'Sallust' was a Roman politician and historian who supported Julius Caesar's Populares party.

His historical works included romanticized views of events, which served as polemics against his moral opponents, including Cicero. It was a style which set him apart from the dry historians who proceeded him.

Sallust joined Caesar in the African wars, and a
More about Sallust...

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“If a man is ambitious for power, he can have no better supporters than the poor: They are not worried about their own possessions, since they have none, and whatever will put something in their pockets is right and proper in their eyes." (Jugurthine War 86.3)” 4 likes
“All persons who are enthusiastic that they should transcend the other animals ought to strive with the utmost effort not to pass through a life of silence, like cattle, which nature has fashioned to be prone and obedient to their stomachs.” 1 likes
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