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all unchafte. Thus much may give us light after what sort of Bookes were prohibited among the Greeks. The Romans also for many ages train'd up only to a military roughnes, resembling most the Lacedæmonian guise, knew of learning little but what their twelve Tables, and the Pontifick College with their Augurs and Flamins tauglit them in Religion and Law, so unacquainted with other learning, that when Carneades and Critolaus, with the Stoick Diogenes comming Embassadors to Rome, tooke there. by occafion to give the City a tast of their Philosophy, they were suspected for seducers by no lesie a man then Cato the Cenfor, who mov'd it in the Senat to diliniffe them speedily, and to banish all R
such Attick bablers out of Italy. But Scipio and others of the noblest Senators withstood him and his old Sabin austerity: honour'd and admir'd the men ; and the Censor himself at last in his old age fell to the study of that whereof before hee was so scrupulous. : And yet at the same time Navius and Plautus the first Latine comedians had fill’d the City with all the borrow'd Scenes of Menander and Philemon. Then began to be consider'd there also what was to be don to libellous books and Authors; for Nævius was quickly cast into prison for his unbridl'd pen, and releas’d by the Tribunes. upon his recantation : We read also that libels were burnt, and the makers punisht by Auguftus. The like severity no doubt
was us'd if ought were impiously writt'n against their esteemed gods. Except in these two points, how the world went in Books, the Magistrat kept no reckning. And therefore Lucretius without impeachment versifies his Epicurism to Memmius, and had the honour to be fet forth the second time by Cicero so great a father of the Commonwealth ; although himselfe disputes against that opinion in his own writings. Nor was the Satyricall sharpnesse, or naked plainnes of Lucilius, or Catullus, or Flaccus, by any order prohibited. And for matters of State, the story of Titus Livius, though it extolld that part which Pompey held, was not therefore supprest by Oetavius Cæfar of the other Faction. But that
Naso was by him banisht in his old age, for the wanton Poems of his youth, was but a meer covert of State. over some secret cause : and besides, the Books were neither banisht nor call'd in. From hence we shall meet with little else but tyranny in the Roman Empire, that we may not marvell, if not so often bad, as good Books were silenc't. I shall therefore deem to have
deem to have bin large anough in producing what among the ancients was punishable to write, save only which, all other arguments were free to treat on.
By this time the Emperors were become Christians, whose discipline in this point I doe not finde to have bin more severe then what was formerly in prac
tice. The Books of those whom they took to be grand Hereticks were examin'd, refuted, and condemn'd in the generall Councels; and not till then were prohibited, or burnt by autority of the Emperor. As for the writings of Heathen authors, unlesse they were plaine invectives against Christianity, as those of Porphyrius and Proclus, they met with no interdi&t that can be cited, till about the year 400, in a Carthaginian Councel, wherein Bishops themselves were forbid to read the Books of Gentiles, but Herefies they might read : while others long before them on the contrary scrupl’d more the Books of Hereticks, then of Gentiles. And that the primitive Councels and Bishops were wont only to de