Juba I - Encyclopedia

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JUBA I. (1st century B.C.), son and successor of Hiempsal, king of Numidia. During the civil wars at Rome he sided with Pompey, partly from gratitude because he had reinstated his father on his throne (Appian, B.C., i. 80), and partly from enmity to Caesar, who had insulted him at Rome by pulling his beard (Suet., Caesar, 71). Further, C. Scribonius Curio, Caesar's general in Africa, had openly proposed, 50 B.C., when tribune of the plebs, that Numidia should be sold to colonists, and the king reduced to a private station. In 49 Juba inflicted on the Caesarean army a crushing defeat, in which Curio was slain (Vell. Pat. ii. 54; Caesar, ii. 40). Juba's attention was distracted by a counter invasion of his territories by Bocchus the younger and Sittius; but, finding that his lieutenant Sabura was able to defend his interests, he rejoined the Pompeians with a large force, and shared the defeat at Thapsus. Fleeing from the field with the Roman general M. Petreius, he wandered about as a fugitive. At length, in despair, Juba killed Petreius, and sought the aid of a slave in despatching himself (46). Juba was a thorough savage; brave, treacherous, insolent and cruel. (See NUMIDIA.)

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