Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books

Dio's Rome by Cassius Dio

Part 2 out of 6

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 0.7 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

forcibly and rescue them from death. Cicero learned of this beforehand
and occupied the Capitol and Forum betimes by night with a garrison. At
dawn he received from above an inspiration to hope for the best: for in
the course of sacrifices conducted in his house by the Vestals in behalf
of the populace, the fire, contrary to custom, shot up in a tongue of
great length. Accordingly, he ordered the praetors to administer an oath
to the populace and have them enlisted, in case there should be any need
of soldiers, and meanwhile himself convened the senate: then, by
throwing them into agitation and fright, he persuaded them to condemn to
death the persons held under arrest.

[-36-] At first the senators had been at variance, and came near setting
them free. For while all before Caesar had voted that they should be put
to death, he gave his decision that they should be imprisoned and
deported to various cities after having their property confiscated, with
the condition that there should be no further deliberation about
immunity for them, and if any one of them should run away, he should be
considered among the enemies of that city from which he fled. Then all
who subsequently made known their opinions, until it came to Cato, cast
this vote, so that some of the first also changed their minds. But the
fact that Cato himself gave a sentence of death against them caused all
the rest to vote similarly. So the conspirators were punished by the
decision of the majority and a sacrifice and period of festival over
them was decreed,--something that had never before happened from any
such cause. Others, also, against whom information was lodged, were
sought out and some incurred suspicion and were held to account for
merely intending to join that party. The consuls managed most of the
investigations, but Aulus Fulvius, a senator, was slain by his own
father; and some think that the latter was not the only private
individual who did this. There were many others, that is, not only
consuls but persons in private life, who killed their children. This was
the course of affairs at that time.

[-37-] The priestly elections, on motion of Labienus supported by Caesar,
were again referred by the people to popular vote, contrary to the law
of Sulla, but in renewal of the law of Domitius. Caesar at the death of
Metellus Pius was eager for his priesthood, although young and not
having served as praetor. Resting his hopes of it upon the multitude,
therefore, especially because he had helped Labienus against Rabirius
and had not voted for the death of Lentulus, he took the above course.
And he was appointed pontifex maximus, in spite of the fact that many
others, Catulus most of all, were his rivals for the honor. This because
he showed himself perfectly ready to serve and flatter every one, even
ordinary persons, and he spared no speech or action for getting
possession of the objects for which he strove. He paid no heed to
temporary groveling when weighed against subsequent power, and he
cringed as before superiors to those men whom he was planning to

[-38-] Toward Caesar, accordingly, for these reasons, the masses were
well disposed, but their anger was directed against Cicero for the death
of the citizens, and they displayed their enmity in many ways. Finally,
when on the last day of his office he desired to give a defence and
account of all that had been done in his consulship,--for he took great
pleasure not only in being praised by others, but also in extolling
himself,--they made him keep silence and did not allow him to utter a
word outside of his oath; in this they had Metellus Nepos, the tribune,
to aid them. Only Cicero, in violent protestation, did take an
additional oath that he had saved the city.

[B.C. 62 (_a.u._ 692)]

[-39-] For that he incurred all the greater hatred. Catiline met his
doom at the very opening of the year in which Junius Silanus and Lucius
Licinius held office. For a while, although he had no small force, he
watched the movements of Lentulus and delayed, in the hope that if
Cicero and his adherents should be slain in good season he could easily
execute his remaining designs. But when he ascertained that Lentulus had
perished and that many of his followers had deserted for that reason, he
was compelled to risk the uttermost, especially as Antonius and Metellus
Celer, who were besieging Faesulae, did not allow him to advance in any
direction. He proceeded, therefore, against Antonius--the two were
separately encamped--although the latter had greater renown than
Metellus and was invested with greater power. The reason was that
Catiline had hopes of his letting himself be beaten in order to fulfill
the demands of his oath.

[-40-] The latter, who suspected this, no longer felt kindly toward
Catiline, because he was weak; for most men form both friendships and
enmities with reference to persons' influence and to individual
advantage. Furthermore, being afraid that the arch-conspirator, when he
saw them fighting earnestly, might utter some reproach and bring to
light things that should not be mentioned, he pretended to be sick and
confided the conduct of the battle to Marcus Petreius. This commander
joined battle with them and not without bloodshed cut down Catiline and
three thousand others while fighting most valiantly. No one of them
fled, but every man fell at his post. Even the victors mourned their
common loss, inasmuch as they had destroyed (no matter how justly) so
many and such brave men, who were citizens and allies. His head Antonius
sent to the city in order that its inhabitants might believe in his
death and have no further fear. He himself was named imperator for the
victory, although the number of the slaughtered was smaller than usual.
Sacrifices of oxen were also voted, and the people changed their raiment
to signify their deliverance from all dangers.

[-41-] Nevertheless, the allies who had shared the undertaking with
Catiline and still survived after that did not remain quiet, but through
fear of punishment created disturbances. Against each division of them
praetors were sent, overcame them in season, while still in a way
scattered, and punished them. Others that were avoiding observation were
convicted and condemned on information from Lucius Vettius, a knight,
who had taken part in the conspiracy but now on promise of immunity
revealed them. This went on until, after having impeached some men and
written their names on a tablet, he desired the privilege of writing in
others. The senators suspected that he was not dealing fair and would
not give him the document again for fear he should erase some names, but
had him mention orally all he had omitted. Then in shame and fear he
made known only a few others.

Since even under these circumstances disquietude prevailed in the city
and among the allies through ignorance of the persons named, and some
were needlessly troubled about themselves, while some incorrectly
suspected others, the senate decreed that the names be published. As a
result the innocent regained composure and judgments were pronounced
upon those called to account. Some were present to be condemned and
others let their cases go by default.

[-42-] Such was the career of Catiline and his downfall which, owing to
the reputation of Cicero and the speeches delivered against him, brought
him a greater name than his deeds deserved. Cicero came near being tried
immediately for the killing of Lentulus and the other prisoners. This
complaint, though technically brought against him, was really directed
against the senate. For among the populace its members were subject to
denunciations of the utmost virulence voiced by Metellus Nepos, to the
effect that they had no right to condemn any citizen to death without
the consent of the people. But Cicero had no trouble at that time. The
senate had granted immunity to all those who administered affairs during
that period and had further proclaimed that if any one should dare to
call any one of them to account again, he should be in the category of a
personal and public enemy; so that Nepos was afraid and aroused no
further tumult.

[-43-] This was not the senate's only victory. Nepos had moved that
Pompey be summoned with his army (he was still in Asia), pretendedly for
the purpose of bringing calm to the existing conditions, but really in
hope that he himself might through him get power in the disturbances he
was causing, because Pompey favored the multitude: this plan the
senators prevented from being ratified. For, to begin with, Cato and
Quintus Minucius in their capacity as tribunes vetoed the proposition
and stopped the clerk who was reading the motion. Nepos took the
document to read it himself, but they snatched it away, and when even so
he undertook to make some oral remarks they laid hold of his mouth. The
result was that a battle with sticks and stones and even swords took
place between them, in which some others joined who assisted both sides.
Therefore the senators convened in session that very day, changed their
togas and gave the consuls charge of the city, "that it suffer no
injury." Then even Nepos was afraid and retired immediately from their
midst: subsequently, after publishing some piece of writing against the
senate, he set out to join Pompey, although he had no right to be absent
from the city a single night.

[-44-] After this occurrence Caesar, who was now praetor, likewise showed
no further revolutionary tendencies. He effected the removal of the name
of Catulus from the temple of Jupiter Capitolinus--he was calling him to
account for theft and was demanding an account of the money he had
spent--and the entrusting to Pompey of the construction of the remainder
of the edifice. For many details, considering the size and character of
the work, were but half finished. Or else Caesar pretended it was so, in
order that Pompey might gain the glory for its completion and inscribe
his name instead. He was not, to be sure, so ready to do him a favor as
to submit to having passed concerning himself some decrees similar to
that regarding Nepos. He did not, in fact, act thus for Pompey's sake,
but in order that he might ingratiate himself with the populace. Still,
as it was, all feared Pompey to such an extent, seeing that it was not
yet clear whether he would give up his legions, that when he sent ahead
Marcus Piso, his lieutenant, to seek the consulship, they postponed the
elections in order that the latter might attend them, and on his arrival
elected him unanimously. For Pompey had recommended the man not only to
his friends, but also to his enemies.

[-45-] It was at this time that Publius Clodius debauched Caesar's wife
in her house and during the performance of the secret rites which
according to ancestral precedent the Vestals carried out at the
residences of consuls and praetors in behalf of the whole male
population. Caesar brought no charge against him, understanding well that
on account of his connections he would not be convicted, but divorced
his wife, telling her that he did not really believe the story but that
he could no longer live with her inasmuch as she had been suspected of
committing adultery at all: a chaste woman must not only not err, but
not even incur any evil suspicion.

[B.C. 61 (_a.u._ 693)]

[-46-] Following these events the stone bridge, called the Fabrician,
leading to the little island in the Tiber was constructed. The next year
in the consulship of Piso and Marcus Messala, the men in power showed
their hatred of Clodius and at the same time made expiation for his
pollution by delivering him to the court, after the pontifices had
decided that the rites because of his act had not been duly performed
and should be annulled. He was accused of adultery, in spite of Caesar's
silence, and of desertion at Nisibis and furthermore of having had
guilty relations with his sister: yet he was acquitted, although the
juries had requested and obtained of the senate a guard to prevent their
suffering any harm at his hands. Regarding this Catulus said jestingly
that they had asked for the guard not in order to condemn Clodius with
safety, but in order to preserve for themselves the money which they had
received in bribes.[25]

The author of this speech died shortly after,--a man who had always,
more conspicuously than his predecessors, held democracy in honor above
everything. That year the censors enrolled in the senatorial body all
who had attained office, even beyond the proper number. Until then, too,
the populace had watched unbroken series of armed combats, but now they
introduced the custom of going out to take lunch in the course of the
entertainment. This practice which began at that time continues even
now, when the person in authority exhibits games.

[-47-] This was the course of affairs in the city. Gaul in the vicinity
of Narbo was being devastated by the Allobroges, and Gaius Pomptinus,
its governor, sent his lieutenants against the enemy, but himself made a
stand at a convenient spot from which he could keep watch of what
occurred; this would enable him to give them opportune advice and
assistance, as their advantage might from time to time dictate.

Manlius Lentinus made a campaign against the city of Valentia and
terrified the inhabitants so, that the majority ran away and the rest
sent ambassadors for peace. Just then the country population coming to
their aid suddenly fell upon him; and he was repulsed from the wall, but
ravaged the land with impunity until Catugnatus, the commander of their
whole tribe, and some others of the dwellers across the Isar brought
them help. For the time being he did not dare to hinder them from
crossing, by reason of the number of the boats, for fear they might
gather in a body on seeing the Romans arrayed against them. As the
country was wooded, however, right down to the river bank, he planted
ambuscades in it, and captured and destroyed them as fast as they
crossed. While following up some fugitives he fell in with Catugnatus
himself, and would have perished with all his force, had not the advent
of a violent storm detained the barbarians from pursuit.

[-48-] Later, when Catugnatus had gone away to some distant place,
Lentinus overran the country again, and seized and razed to the ground
the wall where he had met with mishap. Also, Lucius Marius and Servius
Galba crossed the Rhone and after damaging the possessions of the
Allobroges finally reached the city of Solonium[27] and occupied a
strong position commanding it. In the battle they conquered their
opponents and set fire to the fortification, a portion of which was of
wood: they did not, however, capture it, being hindered by the
appearance of Catugnatus. Pomptinus, on receipt of this news, proceeded
against him with his entire force, and besieged and got possession of
the inhabitants all except Catugnatus. After that he more easily
subjugated the remaining portions.

[B.C. 60 (_a.u._ 694)]

[-49-] At this juncture Pompey entered Italy and had Lucius Afranius and
Metellus Celer appointed consuls, vainly hoping that through them he
could effect whatever he desired. Among his chief wishes was to have
some land given to him for the comrades of his campaigns and to have all
his acts approved; but he failed of these objects at that time, because
those in power, who were formerly not pleased with him, prevented the
questions being brought to vote. And of the consuls themselves Afranius
(who understood how to dance better than to transact any business) did
not unite with him for any purpose, and Metellus, in anger that Pompey
had divorced his sister in spite of having had children by her,
consistently opposed him in everything. Moreover, Lucius Lucullus whom
Pompey had once treated contemptuously at a chance meeting in Gaul was
greatly incensed against him, bidding him give an account individually
and separately of everything he had done instead of demanding a
ratification for all of his acts at once. He said it was only fair to
refuse to let absolutely everything that Pompey had done, as to the
character of which no one knew anything, be confirmed; it was unjust to
treat them like deeds performed by some master. When he (Lucullus) had
finished any of his own undertakings, he was accustomed to ask that an
investigation of each one be made in the senate, in order that the
senators might ratify whichever suited them. Lucullus was strongly
supported by Cato and Metellus and the rest who had the same wishes as

[-50-] Accordingly, when the tribune who moved that land be assigned to
the adherents of Pompey added to the proposition (in order that they
might more readily vote this particular measure and ratify his acts)
that the same opportunity be afforded all the citizens as well, Metellus
contested every point with him and attacked the tribune to such an
extent that the latter had him put in a cell. Then Metellus wished to
assemble the senate there. When the other--his name was Lucius
Flavius--set the tribune's bench at the very entrance of the cell and
sitting there became an obstacle to any one's entrance, Metellus ordered
the wall of the prison to be cut through so that the senate might have
an entrance through it, and made preparations to pass the night where he
was. Pompey, on learning of this, in shame and some fear that the
populace might take offence, directed Flavius to withdraw. He spoke as
if this were a request from Metellus, but was not believed: for the
latter's pride was well known to all. Indeed, Metellus would not give
his consent when the other tribunes wished to set him free. He would not
even yield when Flavius threatened him again that he would not allow him
to go out to the province which he had obtained by lot unless he should
assist the tribune in putting the law through: on the contrary he was
very glad to remain in the city.

Pompey, therefore, since he could accomplish nothing because of Metellus
and the rest, said that they were jealous of him and that he would let
the people know of this. Fearing, however, that he should miss their
support as well, and so be subjected to still greater shame, he
abandoned his original aims. Thus he learned that he had no power in
reality, but only the reputation and envy resulting from his former
authority, which on the other hand afforded him no actual benefit; and
he repented of having let his legions go and of having delivered himself
to his enemies.

[-51-] Clodius's hatred[27] of the influential men led him after the
trial to desire to be tribune, and he induced some of those who held
that office to move that a share in it be given to the patricians also.
As he could not bring this about, he abjured his noble rank and changing
his tactics set out to obtain the prerogatives of the populace, and was
even enrolled in their list. Immediately he sought the tribuneship but
was not appointed, owing to the opposition of Metellus, who was related
to him and did not like his actions. The excuse that Metellus gave was
that the transference of Clodius had not been in accord with tradition;
this change had been permitted only at the time when the lex curiata was
introduced. Thus ended this episode.

Since now the taxes were a great oppression to the city and the rest of
Italy, the law that abolished them caused pleasure to all. The senators,
however, were angry at the praetor who proposed it (Metellus Nepos was
the man) and wished to erase his name from the law, entering another one
instead. Although this plan was not carried out, it was still made clear
to all that they received not even benefits gladly from inferior men.
About this same time Faustus, son of Sulla, gave a gladiatorial combat
in memory of his father and entertained the people brilliantly,
furnishing them with baths and oil gratis.

[-52-] While this happened in the city, Caesar had obtained the
government of Lusitania after his praetorship: and, though he might
without any great labor have cleared the land of brigandage (which
probably always existed there) and then have kept quiet, he refused to
do so. He was eager for glory, emulating Pompey and his other
predecessors who at one time had held great power, and he harbored no
small designs; it was his hope, in case he should at that time
accomplish anything, to be immediately chosen consul and show the people
deeds of magnitude. That hope was based more especially upon the fact
that in Gades, when he was praetor, he had dreamed of intercourse with
his mother, and had learned from the seers that he should come to great
power. Hence, on beholding there a likeness of Alexander dedicated in
the temple of Hercules he had given a groan, lamenting that he had
performed no great work as yet.

Accordingly, though he might, as I have said, have been at peace, he
took his way to Mount Herminium and ordered the dwellers on it to move
into the plain, pretendedly that they might not rush down from their
strongholds and plunder, but really because he well knew that they would
never do what he asked, and that as a result he should get a cause for
war. This also happened. After these men, then, had taken up arms he
proceeded to draw them on. When some of the neighbors, fearing that he
would betake himself against them too, carried off their children and
wives and most valuable possessions out of the way across the Dorius, he
first occupied their cities, where these measures were being taken, and
next joined battle with the men themselves. They put their flocks in
front of them, so that the Romans might scatter to seize the cattle,
whereupon they would attack them. But Caesar, neglecting the quadrupeds,
took the men by surprise and conquered them. [-53-] Meanwhile he learned
that the inhabitants of Herminium had withdrawn and were intending to
ambuscade him as he returned. So for the time being he returned by
another road, but again made an attempt upon them in which he was
victorious and pursued them in flight to the ocean. When, however, they
abandoned the mainland and crossed over to an island, he stayed where he
was, for his supply of boats was not large. He did put together some
rafts, by means of which he sent on a part of his army, and lost
numerous men. The person in command of them had advanced to a breakwater
which was near the island and had disembarked the troops with a view to
their crossing over on foot, when he was forced off by the flood tide
and put out to sea, leaving them in the lurch. All of them died bravely
defending themselves save Publius Scaefius, the only one to survive.
Deprived of his shield and wounded in many places he leaped into the
water and escaped by swimming. These events occurred all at one time.
Later, Caesar sent for boats from Gades, crossed over to the island with
his whole army and overcame the dwellers there without a blow, as they
were in poor condition from lack of food. Thence he sailed along to
Brigantium, a city of Gallaecia, alarmed the people (who had never before
seen a vessel) by the breakers which his approach to land caused, and
subjugated them.

[-54-] On accomplishing this he thought he had gained a sufficient means
of access to the consulship and set out hastily, even before his
successor arrived, to the elections. He decided to seek the position
even before asking for a triumph, since it was not possible to hold a
festival beforehand. He was refused the triumph, for Cato opposed him
with might and main. However, he let that go, hoping to perform many
more and greater exploits and celebrate corresponding triumphs, if
elected consul. Besides the omens previously recited, on which, he at
all times greatly prided himself, was the fact that a horse of his had
been born with clefts in the hoofs of its front feet, and bore him
proudly, whereas it would not endure any other rider. Consequently his
expectations were of no small character, so that he willingly resigned
the triumphal celebration and entered the city to canvass for office.
Here he courted Pompey and Crassus and the rest so skillfully that
though they were still at enmity with each other, and their political
clubs were likewise, and though each opposed everything that he learned
the other wished, he won them over and was unanimously appointed by them
all. This evidences his cleverness in the greatest degree that he should
have known and arranged the occasions and the amount of his services so
well as to attach them both to him when they were working against each

[-55-] He was not even satisfied with this, but actually reconciled
them, not because he was desirous of having them agree, but because he
saw that they were the most powerful persons. And he understood well
that without the aid of both or of one he could never come to any great
power; but if he should make a friend of merely either one of them, he
should by that fact find the other his antagonist and should suffer more
reverses through him than he would win success by the support of the
other. For, on the one hand, it seemed to him that all men work more
strenuously against their enemies than they cooeperate with their
friends, not merely as a corollary of the fact that anger and hate impel
more earnest endeavor than any friendship, but also because, when one
man works for himself, and a second for another, success does not hold a
like amount of pleasure or failure of pain in the two cases. Per contra
he reflected that it was handier to get in people's way and prevent
their reaching any prominence than to be willing to lead them to great
heights. The chief reason for this was that he who keeps another from
attaining magnitude pleases others as well as himself, whereas he who
exalts another renders him burdensome to both those parties.

[-56-] These reasons led Caesar at that time to insinuate himself into
their good graces, and subsequently he reconciled them with each other.
He did not believe that without them he could either attain permanent
power or fail to offend one of them some time, and had equally little
fear of their harmonizing their plans and so becoming stronger than he.
For he understood perfectly that he should master other people
immediately through their friendship, and a little later master them
through the agency of each other. And so it was.[28]

Pompey and Crassus, the moment they entered into his plan, themselves
made peace each with the other as if of their own accord, and took Caesar
into partnership respecting their designs. Pompey, on his side, was not
so strong as he had hoped to be, and seeing that Crassus was in power
and that Caesar's influence was growing feared that he should be utterly
overthrown by them; but he had the additional hope that if he made them
sharers in present advantages, he should win back his old authority
through them. Crassus thought that he should properly surpass them all
by reason of his family as well as his wealth; and since he was far
inferior to Pompey and thought that Caesar would rise to great heights,
he desired to set them in opposition one to the other, in order that
neither of them should have the upper hand. He expected that they would
be evenly matched antagonists and in this event he would get the benefit
of the friendship of each and gain honors beyond both of them. For
without supporting in all respects either the policy of the populace or
that of the senate he did everything to advance his own supremacy. Thus
it happened that he did both of them equal services and avoided the
enmity of either, promoting on occasion whatever measures pleased both
to such an extent as was likely to give him the credit for everything
that went to the liking of the two, without any share in more unpleasant

[-57-] Thus the three for these reasons cemented friendship, ratified it
with oaths, and managed public affairs by their own influence. Next they
gave and received in turn, one from another, whatever they set their
hearts on and was in view of the circumstances suitable to be carried
out by them. Their harmony caused an agreement also on the part of their
political followers: these, too, did with impunity whatever they wished,
enjoying the leadership of their superiors toward any ends, so that few
traces of moderation remained and those only in Cato and in any one else
who wished to seem to hold the same opinions as did he. No one in that
generation took part in politics from pure motives and without any
individual desire of gain except Cato. Some were ashamed of the acts
committed and others who strove to imitate him took a hand in affairs in
places, and manifested something of the same spirit: they were not
persevering, however, inasmuch as their efforts sprang from cultivation
of an attitude and not from innate virtue.

[-58-] This was the condition into which these men brought the affairs
of Rome at that time while they concealed their sworn fellowship as much
as possible. They did whatever had approved itself to them, but
fabricated and put forth the most opposite motives, in order that they
might still lie concealed for a very long time till their preparations
should be sufficiently made.

Yet Heaven was not ignorant of their doings, and it straightway revealed
plainly to those who could understand any such signs all that would
later result from their domination. For of a sudden such a storm came
down upon the whole city and all the land that quantities of trees were
torn up by the roots, many houses were shattered, the boats moored in
the Tiber both near the city and at its mouth were sunk, and the wooden
bridge destroyed, and a small theatre built of timbers for some assembly
was overturned, and in the midst of all this great numbers of human
beings perished. These portents appeared in advance,--an image, as it
were, of what should befall the people both on land and on water.



The following is contained in the Thirty-eighth of Dio's Rome: How Caesar
and Bibulus fell to quarreling (chapters 1-8).

How Cicero was exiled (chapters 9-17).

How Philiscus consoled Cicero in the matter of his exile (chapters

How Caesar fought the Helvetii and Ariovistus (chapters 31-50).

Duration of time, two years, in which there were the following
magistrates, here enumerated:

C. Julius C.F. Caesar, M. Calpurnius || C.F. Bibulus ||. (B.C. 59 = a.u.

||L. Calpurnius || L.F. Piso, A. Gabinius A.F. (B.C. 58 = a.u. 696.)

The names within the parallel lines are lacking in the MSS., but were
inserted by Palmer (and Boissevain).


[B.C. 59 (_a.u._ 695)]

[-1-] The following year Caesar wished to court the favor of the entire
multitude, that he might make them his own to an even greater degree.
But since he was anxious to seem to be advancing also the interests of
the leading classes, so as to avoid getting into enmity with them, he
often told them that he would propose no measure which would not
advantage them also. Now there was a certain proposition about the land
which he was for assigning to the whole populace, that he had framed in
such a way as to incur no little censure for it. However, he pretended
he would not introduce this measure, either, unless it should be
according to their wishes. So far as the law went, indeed, no one could
find fault with him. The mass of the citizens, which was unwieldly (a
feature which more than any other accounted for their tendency to riot),
was thus turning in the direction of work and agriculture; and most of
the desolated sections of Italy were being colonized afresh, so that not
only those who had been worn out in the campaigns, but also all of the
rest should have subsistence a plenty, and that without any individual
expense on the part of the city or any assessment of the chief men;
rather it included the conferring of both rank and office upon many. He
wanted to distribute all the public land except Campania--this he
advised their keeping distinct as a public possession, because of its
excellence--and the rest he urged them to buy not from any one who was
unwilling to sell nor again for so large a price as the settlers might
wish, but first from people who were willing to dispose of their
holdings and second for as large a price as it had been valued at in the
tax-lists. They had a great deal of surplus money, he asserted, as a
result of the booty which Pompey had captured, as well as from the
new[29] tributes and taxes just established, and they ought, inasmuch as
it had been provided by the dangers that citizens had incurred, to
expend it upon those very persons. Furthermore he was for constituting
the land commissioners not a small body, to seem like an oligarchy, nor
composed of men who were laboring under any legal indictment,[30] lest
somebody might be displeased, but twenty to begin with, so that many
might share the honor, and next those who were most suitable, except
himself. This point he quite insisted should be settled in advance, that
it might not be thought that he was making a motion on his own account.
He himself was satisfied with the conception and proposal of the matter;
at least he said so, but clearly he was doing a favor to Pompey and
Crassus and the rest.

[-2-] So far as the motion went, then, he escaped censure, so that no
one, indeed, ventured to open his mouth in opposition: for he had read
it aloud beforehand in the senate, and calling upon each one of the
senators by name had enquired his opinion, for fear that some one might
have some fault to find; and he promised to frame differently or even
erase entirely any clause which might not please any person. Still on
the whole quite all the foremost men who were outside the plot were
irritated. And this very fact troubled them most, that Caesar had
compiled such a document that not one could raise a criticism and yet
they were all cast down. They suspected the purpose with which it was
being done,--that he would bind the multitude to him as a result of it,
and have reputation and power over all men. For this reason even if no
one spoke against him, no one expressed approval, either. This sufficed
for the majority and they kept promising him that they would pass the
decree: but they did nothing; on the contrary, fruitless delays and
postponements kept arising. [-3-] As for Marcus Cato, who was in general
an upright man and displeased with any innovation but was able to exert
no influence either by nature or by education, he did not himself make
any complaint against the motion, but without going into particulars
urged them to abide by the existing system and take no steps beyond it.
At this Caesar was on the point of dragging Cato out of the very
senate-house and casting him into prison. The latter gave himself up
quite readily to be led away and not a few of the rest followed him; one
of them, Marcus Petreius, being rebuked by Caesar because he was taking
his departure before the senate was yet dismissed, replied: "I prefer to
be with Cato in his cell rather than here with you." Abashed at this
speech Caesar let Cato go and adjourned the senate, saying only this much
in passing: "I have made you judges and lords of the law so that if
anything should not suit you, it need not be brought into the public
assembly; but since you are not willing to pass a decree, that body
itself shall decide."

[-4-] Thereafter he communicated to the senate nothing further under
this head but brought directly before the people whatever he desired.
However, as he wished even under these circumstances to secure as
sympathizers some of the foremost men in the assembly, hoping that they
had now changed their minds and would be a little afraid of the
populace, he began with his colleague and asked him if he criticised the
provisions of the law. When the latter made no answer save that he would
endure no innovations in his own office, Caesar proceeded to supplicate
him and persuaded the multitude to join him in his request, saying: "You
shall have the law if only he wishes it."

Bibulus with a great shout replied: "You shall not have this law this
year, even if all of you wish it." And having spoken thus he took his

Caesar did not address any further enquiries to persons in office,
fearing that some one of them might also oppose him; but he held a
conference with Pompey and Crassus, though they were private citizens,
and bade them make known their views about the proposition. This was not
because he failed to understand their attitude, for all their
undertakings were in common; but he purposed to honor these men in that
he called them in as advisers about the law when they were holding no
office, and also to stir terror in the rest by securing the adherence of
men who were admittedly the foremost in the city at that time and had
the greatest influence with all. By this very move, also, he would
please the multitude, by giving proof that they were not striving for
any unusual or unjust end, but for objects which those great men were
willing both to scrutinize and to approve.

[-5-] Pompey, accordingly, very gladly addressed them as follows: "Not I
alone, Quirites, sanction the proposition, but all the rest of the
senate as well, seeing that it has voted for land to be given, aside
from the partners of my campaign, to those who formerly followed
Metellus. At that time, indeed, since the treasury had no great means,
the granting of the land was naturally postponed; but at present, since
it has become exceedingly rich through my efforts, it behooves the
senators to redeem their promise and the rest to reap the fruit of the
common toils." After these remarks he went over in detail every feature
of the proposition and approved them all, so that the crowd was mightily
pleased. Seeing this, Caesar asked him if he would willingly lend
assistance against those who took the opposite side, and advised the
multitude to ask his aid similarly for this end. When this was done
Pompey was elated because both the consul and the multitude had
petitioned his help, although he was holding no position of command. So,
with an added opinion of his own value and assuming much dignity he
spoke at some length, finally declaring "if any one dares to raise a
sword, I, too, will oppose to him my shield." These utterances of Pompey
Crassus, too, approved. Consequently even if some of the rest were not
pleased, most became very eager for the ratification of the law when
these[31] men whose reputations were in general excellent and who were,
according to common opinion, inimical to Caesar (their reconciliation was
not yet manifest) joined in the approbation of his measure.

[-6-] Bibulus, notwithstanding, would not yield and with three tribunes
to support him continued to hinder the enactment of the law. Finally,
when no excuse for delay was any longer left him, he proclaimed a sacred
period for all the remaining days of the year alike, during which people
could not, in accordance with the laws, come together for a meeting.[32]
Caesar paid slight attention to him and announced an appointed day on
which they should pass the law. When the multitude by night had already
occupied the Forum, Bibulus appeared with the force at his disposal and
made his way to the temple of the Dioscuri from which Caesar was
delivering his harangue. The men fell back before him partly out of
respect and partly because they thought he would not actually oppose
them. But when he reached an elevated place and attempted to dispute
with Caesar, he was thrust down the steps, his staves were broken to
pieces, and the tribunes as well as the others received blows and

Thus the law was ratified. Bibulus was for the moment satisfied to save
his life, but on the following day tried in the senate to annul the act;
however, he effected nothing, for all, subservient to the will of the
multitude, remained quiet. Accordingly he retired to his home and did
not again so much as once appear in public until the last day of the
year. Instead he remained in his house,--notifying Caesar through his
assistants on the introduction of every new measure that it was a sacred
period and by the laws he could rightfully take no action during it.
Publius Vatinius, a tribune, indeed undertook to place Bibulus in a cell
for this, but was prevented from confining him by the opposition of his
associates in office. However, Bibulus in this way put himself out of
politics and the tribunes belonging to his party likewise were never
again entrusted with any public duty.

[-7-] It should be said that Metellus Celer and Cato and through him one
Marcus Favonius, who imitated him in all points, for a while would not
take the oath of obedience to the law. (This custom once[33], begun, as
I have stated, became the regular practice in the case of other unusual
measures also.) A number besides Metellus, who referred to his title of
Numidicus, flatly declared they would never join in approving it. When,
however, the day came[34] on which they were to incur the stated
penalties, they took the oath, either as a result of the human trait
according to which many persons utter promises and threats more easily
than they put anything into execution, or else because they were going
to be fined to no purpose, without helping the commonwealth at all by
their obstinacy. So the law was ratified, and furthermore the land of
Campania was given to those having three or more children. For this
reason Capua was then for the first time considered a Roman colony.

By this means Caesar attached to his cause the people, and he won the
knights, as well, by allowing them a third part of the taxes which they
had hired. All the collections were made through them and though they
had often asked the senate to grant them some satisfactory schedule,
they had not gained it, because Cato and the others worked against them.
When, then, he had conciliated this class also without any protest, he
first ratified all the acts of Pompey--and in this he met no opposition
from Lucullus or any one else,--and next he put through many other
measures while no one opposed him. There was no gainsaying even from
Cato, although in the praetorship which he soon after held, he would
never mention the title of the other's laws, which were called the
"Julian." While he followed their provisions in allotting the courts he
most ridiculously concealed their names.

[-8-] These, then, because they are very many in number and offer no
contribution to this history, I will leave aside.--Quintus Fufius
Calenus, finding that the [B.C. 59 (_a.u._ 695)] votes of all in party
contests were promiscuously mingled,--each of the classes attributing
the superior measures to itself and referring the less sensible to the
others--passed when praetor a law that each should cast its votes
separately: his purpose was that even if their individual opinions could
not be revealed, by reason of doing this secretly, yet the views of the
classes at least might be made known.

As for the rest, Caesar himself proposed, advised and arranged everything
in the city once for all as if he were its sole ruler. Hence some
facetious persons hid the name of Bibulus in silence altogether and
named Caesar twice, and in writing would mention Gaius Caesar and Julius
Caesar as being the consuls. But in matters that concerned himself he
managed through others, for he guarded most strenuously against the
contingency of presenting anything to himself. By this means he more
easily effected everything that he desired. He himself declared that he
needed nothing more and strongly protested that he was satisfied with
his present possessions. Others, believing him a necessary and useful
factor in affairs proposed whatever he wished and had it ratified, not
only before the populace but in the senate itself. For whereas the
multitude granted him the government of Illyricum and of Gaul this side
of the Alps with three legions for five years, the senate entrusted him
in addition with Gaul beyond the mountains and another legion.

[-9-] Even so, in fear that Pompey in his absence (during which Aulus
Gabinius was to be consul) might lead some revolt, he attached to his
cause both Pompey and the other consul, Lucius Piso, by the bond of
kinship: upon the former he bestowed his daughter, in spite of having
betrothed her to another man, and he himself married Piso's daughter.
Thus he fortified himself on all sides. But Cicero and Lucullus, little
pleased at this, undertook to kill both Caesar and Pompey through the
medium of one Lucius Vettius; they failed of their attempt, however, and
all but perished themselves as well. For Vettius, being informed against
and arrested before he had acted, denounced them; and had he not charged
Bibulus also with being in the plot against the two, they would have
certainly met some evil fate. As it was, inasmuch as in his defence he
accused the man who had revealed the project to Pompey, he was suspected
of not speaking the truth on other points either, but created the
impression that the matter had been somehow purposely contrived with a
view to calumniating the opposite party. About these details some spread
one report and others another, but nothing was definitely proven.
Vettius was brought before the populace and after naming only those whom
I have mentioned was thrown into prison, where not much later he was
treacherously murdered.

[-10-] In consequence of this Cicero became an object of suspicion on
the part of Caesar and Pompey, and he strengthened their conjecture in
his defence of Antonius. The latter, in his governorship of Macedonia,
had committed many outrages upon the subject territory as well as the
section that was under truce, and had been well chastised in return. He
ravaged the possessions of the Dardani and their neighbors and then did
not dare to withstand their attack, but pretending to retire with his
cavalry for some other purpose took to flight; in this way the enemy
surrounded his infantry and drove them out of the country with violence,
taking away their plunder from them besides. When he tried the same
tactics on the allies in Moesia he was defeated near the city of the
Istrianians by the Bastarnian Scythians who came to their aid; and
thereupon he decamped. It was not for this conduct, however, that he was
accused, but he was indicted for conspiracy with Catiline; yet he was
convicted on the former charge, so that it was his fate to be found not
guilty of the crime for which he was being tried, but to be punished for
something of which he was not accused. That was the way he finally came
off; but at the time Cicero in the character of his advocate, because
Antonius was his colleague, made a most bitter assault upon Caesar as
responsible for the suit against the man, and heaped some abuse upon him
in addition.

[-11-] Caesar was naturally indignant at it, but, although consul,
refused to be the author of any insolent speech or act against him. He
said that the rabble purposely cast out[35] many idle slurs upon their
superiors, trying to entice them into strife, so that the commoners
might seem to be equal and of like importance, in case they should get
anything similar said of themselves. Hence he did not see fit to put any
person on an equal footing with himself. It had been his custom,
therefore, to conduct himself thus toward others who insulted him at
all, and now seeing that Cicero was not so anxious about abusing him as
about obtaining similar abuse in return and was merely desirous of being
put on an equality with him, he paid little heed to his traducer, acting
as if nothing had been said; indeed, he allowed him to employ
vilifications unstintedly, as if they were praises showered upon him.
Still, he did not disregard him entirely. Caesar possessed in reality a
rather decent nature, and was not easily moved to anger. Accordingly,
though punishing many, since his interests were of such magnitude, yet
his action was not due to anger nor was it altogether immediate. He did
not indulge wrath at all, but watched his opportunity and his vengeance
dogged the steps of the majority of culprits without their knowing it.
He did not take measures so as to seem to defend himself against
anybody, but so as to arrange everything to his own advantage while
creating the least odium. Therefore he visited retribution secretly and
in places where one would least have expected it,--both for the sake of
his reputation, to avoid seeming to be of a wrathful disposition, and to
the end that no one through premonition should be on his guard in
advance, or try to inflict some dangerous injury upon his persecutor
before being injured. For he was not more concerned about what had
already occurred than that[36] (future attacks) should be hindered. As a
result he would pardon many of those, even, who had harmed him greatly,
or pursue them only a little way, because he believed they would do no
further injury; whereas upon many others, even more than was right, he
took vengeance looking to his safety, and said that[37] what was done he
could never make undone,[38] but because of the extreme punishment he
would[39] for the future at least suffer[40] no calamity.

[-12-] These calculations induced him to remain quiet on this occasion,
too; but when he ascertained that Clodius was willing to do him a favor
in return, because he had not accused him of adultery, he set the man
secretly against Cicero. In the first place, in order that he might be
lawfully excluded from the patricians, he transferred him with Pompey's
cooeperation again to the plebian rank, and then immediately had him
appointed tribune. This Clodius, then, muzzled Bibulus, who had entered
the Forum at the expiration of his office and intended in the course of
taking the oath to deliver a speech about present conditions, and after
that attacked Cicero also.

[B.C. 58 (_a.u._ 696)]

He soon decided that it was not easy to overthrow a man who, on account
of his skill in speaking, had very great influence in politics, and so
proceeded to conciliate not only the populace, but also the knights and
the senate with whom Cicero most held in regard. His hope was that if he
could make these men his own, he might easily cause the downfall of the
orator, whose great strength lay rather in the fear than in the
good-will which he inspired. Cicero annoyed great numbers by his words,
and those who were won to him by benefits conferred were not so numerous
as those alienated by injuries done them. Not only did it hold true in
his case that the majority of mankind are more ready to feel irritation
at what displeases them than to feel grateful to any one for good
treatment, and think that they have paid their advocates in full with
wages, whereas they are determined to give those who oppose them at law
a perceptible setback: but furthermore he invited very bitter enemies by
always striving to get the better of even the strongest men and by
always employing an unbridled and excessive frankness of speech to all
alike; he was in desperate pursuit of a reputation for being able to
comprehend and speak as no one else could, and before all wanted to be
thought a valuable citizen. As a result of this and because he was the
greatest boaster alive and thought no one equal to himself, but in his
words and life alike looked down on all and would not live as any one
else did, he was wearisome and burdensome, and was consequently both
envied and hated even by those very persons whom he pleased.

[-13-] Clodius therefore hoped that for these reasons, if he should
prepare the minds of the senate and the knights and the populace in
advance, he could quickly make way with him. So he straightway[41]
distributed free corn gratis (he had already in the consulship of
Gabinius and Piso introduced a motion that it be measured out to those
who lacked), and revived the associations called _collegia_ in the
native language, which had existed anciently but had been abolished for
some time. The tribunes he forbade to depose a person from any office or
disfranchise him, save if a man should be tried and convicted in
presence of them both. After enticing the citizens by these means he
proposed another law, concerning which it is necessary to speak at some
length, so that it may become clearer to most persons.

Public divination was obtained from the sky and from some other sources,
as I said, but that of the sky carried the greatest weight,--so much so
that whereas the other auguries held were many in number and for each
action, this one was held but once and for the whole day. Besides this
most peculiar feature it was noticeable that whereas in reference to all
other matters sky-divination either allowed things to be done and they
were carried out without consulting any individual augury further, or
else it would prevent and hinder something, it restrained the balloting
of the populace altogether and was always a portent to check them,
whether it was of a favorable or ill-boding nature. Now the cause of
this custom I am unable to state, but I set down the common report.
Accordingly, many persons who wished to obstruct either the proposal of
laws or official appointments that came before the popular assembly were
in the habit of announcing that they would use the divination from the
sky for that day, so that the people could ratify nothing during the
period. Clodius was afraid that if he indicted Cicero some person by
such means might interpose a postponement or delay the trial, and so
introduced measure that no one of the officials should, on the days when
it was necessary for the people to vote on anything, observe the signs
from heaven.

[-14-]Such was the nature of the indictment which he then drew up
against Cicero. The latter understood what was going on and induced
Lucius Ninnius Quadratus, a tribune, to oppose it all: then Clodius, in
fear lest a tumult and delay of some kind should arise as a result,
outwitted him by deceit. He made arrangements with Cicero beforehand to
bring no indictment against him, if he, in turn, would not interfere
with any of the measures under consideration; whereupon, while the
latter and Ninnius were quiet, he secured the passage of the laws, and
next proceeded against the orator. Thus was the latter, who thought
himself extremely wise, deceived on that occasion by Clodius,--if we
ought to say Clodius and not Caesar and his party. For the law that
Clodius proposed after this trick was not on its face enacted against
Cicero (i.e. it did not contain his name), but against all those simply
who put to death or had put to death any citizen without the
condemnation of the populace; yet in fact it was drawn up as strongly as
possible against that one man.

It brought within its scope, indeed, all the senate, because they had
charged the consuls with the protection of the city, by which act it was
permitted the latter to take such steps, and subsequently had voted to
condemn Lentulus and the rest who at that time suffered the death
penalty. Cicero, however, incurred the responsibility alone or most of
all, because he had laid information against them and had each time made
the proposition and put the vote and had finally seen to their execution
by the agents entrusted with such business. For this reason he took
vigorous retaliatory measures, and discarding senatorial dress went
about in the garb of the knights, paying court meanwhile, as he went
back and forth, day and night alike to all who had any influence, not
only of his friends but also of his opponents, and especially to Pompey
and Caesar, inasmuch as they did not show their enmity toward him. [-15-]
In their anxiety not to appear by their own action to have set Clodius
on or to be pleased with his measures, they devised the following way,
which suited them admirably and was obscure to their foe, for deceiving
Cicero. Caesar advised him to yield, for fear he might perish if he
remained where he was: and in order to have it believed the more readily
that he was doing this through good will, he promised that the other
should employ him as helper, so that he might retire from Clodius's path
not with reproach and as if under examination, but in command and with

Pompey, however, turned him aside from this course, calling the act
outright desertion, and uttering insinuations against Caesar to the
effect that through enmity he was not giving sound advice; for his own
counsel, as expressed, was for Cicero to remain and come to the aid of
the senate and himself with outspokenness, and to defend himself
immediately against Clodius: the latter, he declared, would not be able
to accomplish anything with the orator present and confronting him and
would furthermore meet his deserts, and he, Pompey, would cooeperate to
this end. After these speeches from them, modeled in such a way not
because the views of the two were opposed, but for the purpose of
deceiving the man without arousing his suspicion, Cicero attached
himself to Pompey. Of him he had no previous suspicion and was
thoroughly confident of being rescued by his assistance. Many men
respected and honored him, for numerous persons in trouble were saved
some from the judges and others from their very accusers. Also, since
Clodius had been a relative of Pompey's and a partner of his campaigns
for a long period, it seemed likely that he would do nothing that failed
to accord with his wishes. As for Gabinius, Cicero expected that he
could count on him absolutely as an adherent, being a good friend of
his, and equally on Piso because of his regard for right and his kinship
with Caesar. [-16-] On the basis of these calculations, then, he hoped to
win (for he was confident beyond reason even as he had been terrified
without investigating), and in fear lest his withdrawal from town should
seem to have been the result of a bad conscience, he paid heed to
Pompey, while stating to Caesar that he was considerably obliged to him.

Thus it came about that the victim of the deceit continued his
preparations to administer a stinging defeat to his enemies. For, in
addition to the encouraging circumstances already mentioned, the knights
in convention sent to the consuls and senate on the Capitol [B.C. 58
(_a.u._ 696)] envoys in his behalf from their own number, and the
senators Quintus Hortensius and Gaius Curio. One of the many ways in
which Ninnius, too, assisted him was to urge the populace to change
their garb, as if for a universal disaster. And many even of the
senators did[42] this and would not change back until the consuls by
edict rebuked them.

The forces of his adversaries were more powerful, however. Clodius would
not allow Ninnius to take any action in his behalf, and Gabinius would
not grant the knights access to the senate; on the contrary, he drove
one of them, who was very insistent, out of the city and chided
Hortensius and Curio for having come before them when they were
assembled and having undertaken the embassy. Moreover Clodius led them
before the populace where they were well thrashed and beaten for their
embassy by some appointed agents. After this Piso, though he seemed well
disposed toward Cicero and had advised him to slip away beforehand on
seeing that it was impossible for him to attain safety by other means,
nevertheless, when the orator took offence at this counsel, came before
the assembly at the first opportunity--he was too feeble most of the
time--and to the question of Clodius as to what opinion he held
regarding the proposed measure said: "No deed of cruelty or sadness
pleases me." Gabinius, too, on being asked the same question, not only
praised Clodius but indulged in invectives against the knights and the

[-17-] Caesar, however (whom since he had taken the field Clodius could
make arbiter of the proposition only by assembling the throng outside
the walls), condemned the lawlessness of the action taken in regard to
Lentulus, but still did not approve the punishment proposed for it.
Every one knew, he said, all that had been in his mind concerning the
events of that time--he had cast his vote for letting the men live--but
it was not fitting for any such law to be drawn up touching events now
past. This was Caesar's statement; Crassus showed some favor to Cicero
through his son but himself took the side of the multitude. Pompey kept
promising the orator assistance, but by making various excuses at
different times and arranging purposely many journeys out of town failed
to defend him.

Cicero seeing this was frightened and again undertook to resort to
arms,--among other things he did was to abuse Pompey openly with
insults--but was prevented by Cato and Hortensius, for fear a civil war
might result. Then at last, against his will, with shame and the
ill-repute of having gone into exile voluntarily, as if
conscience-stricken, he departed. Before leaving he ascended the Capitol
and dedicated a little image of Minerva, whom he styled "protectress."
It was to Sicily that he secretly betook himself. He had once been
governor there, and entertained a lively hope that he would be honored
among its towns and private citizens and by its rulers.

On his departure the law took effect; so far from meeting with any
opposition, it was supported, as soon as he was once out of the way, by
those very persons (among others) who were thought to be the foremost
movers in Cicero's behalf. His property was confiscated, his house was
razed to the ground, as though it had been an enemy's, and its
foundation was dedicated for a temple of Liberty. Upon the orator
himself exile was imposed, and a continued stay in Sicily was forbidden
him: he was banished three thousand seven hundred and fifty stadia[43]
from Rome, and it was further proclaimed that if he should ever appear
within those limits, both he and those who harbored him might be killed
with impunity.

[-18-] He, accordingly, went over to Macedonia and was living in the
depths of grief. But there met him a man named Philiscus, who had made
his acquaintance in Athens and now by chance fell in with him again.

"Are you not ashamed, Cicero," said this person, "to be weeping and
behaving like a woman? Really, I should never have expected that you,
who have partaken of much education of every kind, who have acted as
advocate to many, would grow so faint-hearted."

"Ah," replied the other, "it's not the same thing, Philiscus, to speak
for others as to advise one's own self. The words spoken in others'
behalf, proceeding from a mind that stands erect, undeteriorated, have
the greatest possible effect. But when some affliction overwhelms the
spirit, it is made turbid and dark and can not think out anything
appropriate. Wherefore, I suppose, it has well been said that it is
easier to counsel others than one's self to be strong under suffering."

"Yours is a very human objection," rejoined Philiscus. "I did not think,
however, that you, who have shown so much wisdom and have trained
yourself in so much learning, had failed to prepare yourself for all
human possibilities, so that if any unexpected accident should happen to
you, it would not find you unfortified. Since, notwithstanding, you are
in this plight, why I might benefit you by rehearsing what is good for
you. Thus, just as men who put a hand to people's burdens relieve them,
so I might lighten this misfortune of yours, and the more easily than
they inasmuch as I shall take upon myself the smallest share of it. You
will not deem it unworthy, I trust, to receive some encouragement from
another. If you were sufficient for your own self, we should have no
need of these words. As it is, you are in a like case to Hippocrates or
Democedes or any other of the great physicians, if one of them should
fall a victim to a disease hard to cure and should need another's hand
to bring about his own recovery."

[-19-] "Indeed," said Cicero, "if you have any such train of reasoning
as will dispel this mist from my soul and restore me to the light of
old, I am most ready to listen. For of words, as of drugs, there are
many varieties and diverse potencies, so that it will not be surprising
if you should be able to steep in some mixture of philosophy even me,
the shining light of senate, assembly, and law-courts."

"Come then," continued Philiscus, "since you are ready to listen, let us
consider first whether these conditions that surround you are actually
bad, and next in what way we may cure them. First of all, now, I see you
are in good physical health and quite vigorous,--a state which is by
nature a blessing to mankind,--and next that you have provisions in
sufficiency so as not to hunger or thirst or be cold or endure any other
unpleasant experience through lack of means, a second circumstance which
any one might naturally set down as good for man's nature. For when
one's physical constitution is good and one can live along without worry
every accessory to happiness is enjoyed."

[-20-] To this Cicero replied: "No, not one of such accessories is of
use when some grief is preying upon one's spirit. The reflections of the
soul distress one far more than bodily comforts can cause delight. Even
so I at present set no value on my physical health because I am
suffering in mind, nor yet in the abundance of necessaries; for the
deprivations I have endured are many."

Said the other: "And does this grieve you? Now if you were going to be
in want of things needful, there would be some reason for your being
annoyed at your loss. But since you have all the necessaries in full
measure, why do you harass yourself because you do not possess more? All
that belongs to one beyond one's needs is in excess and its nature is
the same whether present or absent, for you are aware that even formerly
you did not make use of what was not necessary: hence suppose that at
that time the things which you did not need were non-existent or else
that those of which you are not in want are now here. Most of them were
not yours by inheritance that you should be particularly exercised about
them, but were furnished you by your own tongue and by your words,--the
same causes that effected their loss. Accordingly, you should not take
it hard that just as things were acquired, so they have been lost.
Sea-captains are not greatly disturbed when they suffer great reverses.
They understand, I think, how to look at it sensibly,--that the sea
which gives them wealth takes it away again.

[-21-] "This is enough on one point. I think it should be enough for a
man's happiness to possess a sufficiency and to lack nothing that the
body requires, and I hold that everything in excess brings anxieties and
trouble and jealousies. But as for your saying there is no enjoyment in
physical blessings unless one have corresponding spiritual advantages,
the statement is true: it is impossible if the spirit is in poor
condition that the body should fail to partake of the sickness. However,
I think it much easier for one to care for mental than for physical
vigor. The body, being of flesh, contains many paradoxical possibilities
and requires much assistance from the higher power: the intellect, of a
nature more divine, can be easily trained and prompted. Let us look to
this, therefore, to discover what spiritual blessing has abandoned you
and what evil has come upon you that you cannot shake off.

[-22-] "First, then, I see that you are a man of the greatest
intellectual gifts. The proof is that you nearly always persuaded both
the senate and the people in cases where you gave them any advice and
helped private citizens very greatly in cases where you acted as their
advocate. And second that you are a most just man. Indeed you have
contended everywhere for your country and for your friends and have
arrayed yourself against those who plotted against them. Yes, this very
misfortune which you have suffered has befallen you for no other reason
than that you continued to speak and act in everything for the laws and
for the government. Again, that you have attained the highest degree of
temperance is shown by your very habits. It is not possible for a man
who is a slave to sensual pleasures to appear constantly in public and
to go to and fro in the Forum, making his deeds by day witnesses of
those by night. And because this is so I thought you were the bravest of
men, enjoying, as you did, so great strength of intellect, so great
power in speaking. But it seems that you, startled out of yourself by
having failed contrary to your hope and deserts, have been drawn back a
little from the goal of real bravery. This loss, however, you will
recover immediately, and as your circumstances are such, with a good
physical state and a good spiritual, I cannot see what there is to
distress you."

[-23-] At the end of this speech of his Cicero rejoined:--"There seems
to you, then, to be no great evil in dishonor and exile and not living
at home nor being with your friends, but instead being expelled with
violence from your country, existing in a foreign land, and wandering
about with the name of exile, causing laughter to your enemies and
disgrace to your connections."

"Not a trace of evil, so far as I can see," declared Philiscus. "There
are two elements of which we are constituted,--soul and body,--and
definite blessings and evils are given to each of the two by Nature
herself. Now if there should be any failure in these details, it might
properly be considered hurtful and base, but if all should be right it
would be advantageous rather. This, at the outset, is your condition.
Those things which you mentioned, cases of dishonor among them, and
everything else of the sort are disgraceful and evil only through law
and a kind of notion, and work no injury to either body or soul. What
body could you cite that has fallen sick or perished and what spirit
that has grown wickeder or even more ignorant through dishonor and exile
and anything of that sort? I see none. And the reason is that no one of
these accidents is by nature evil, just as neither honorable position
nor residence in one's country is by nature excellent, but whatever
opinion each one of us holds about them, such they seem to be. For
instance, mankind do not universally apply the term 'dishonor' to the
same conditions, but certain deeds which are reprehensible in some
regions are praised in others and various actions honored by this people
are punishable by that. Some do not so much as know the name, nor the
fact which it implies. This is quite natural. For whatever does not
touch what belongs to man's nature is thought to have no bearing upon
him. Just exactly as it would be most ridiculous, surely, if some
judgment or decree were delivered that so-and-so is sick or so-and-so is
base, so does the case stand regarding dishonor.

[-24-] "The same thing I find to be true in regard to exile. Living
abroad is somehow in a way dishonorable, so that if dishonor pure and
simple contains no evil, surely an evil reputation can not be attached
to exile either. You know at any rate that many live abroad the longest
possible time, some unwillingly and others willingly; and some even
spend their whole life traveling about, just as if they were expelled
from every place: and yet they do not regard themselves as being injured
in doing so. It makes no difference whether a man does it voluntarily or
not. The person who trains unwillingly gets no less strong than he who
is willing about it, and the person who navigates unwillingly obtains no
less benefit than the other. And as for this very element of
unwillingness, I do not see how it can encounter a man of sense. If the
difference between being well and badly off is that some things we
readily volunteer to do and others we are unwilling and grudge to
perform, the trouble can be easily mended. For if We endure willingly
all necessary things and show the white feather before none of them, all
those matters in which one might assume unwillingness have been
abolished. There is, indeed, an old saying and a very good one, to the
effect that we ought not to think it requisite for whatever we wish to
come to pass, but to wish for whatever does come to pass as the result
of any necessity. We neither have free choice in our course of life nor
is it on ourselves that we are dependent; but according as it may suit
Fortune, and according to the character of the Divinity granted each one
of us for the fulfillment of what is ordained, must we also regard our

[-25-] "Such is the nature of the case whether we like it or not. If,
now, it is not mere dishonor or mere exile that troubles you, but the
fact that not only without having done your country any hurt, but after
having benefited her greatly you were dishonored and expelled, look at
it in this way,--that once it was destined for you to have such an
experience, it has been the noblest and the best fortune that could
befall you to be despitefully used without having committed any wrong.
You advised and performed all that was proper for the citizens, not as
individual but as consul, not meddling officiously in a private capacity
but obeying the decree of the senate, not as a party measure but for the
best ends. This or that other person, on the contrary, out of his
superior power and insolence had devised everything against you,
wherefore disasters and grief belong to him for his injustice, but for
you it is noble as well as necessary to bear bravely what the Divinity
has determined. Surely you would not have preferred to cooeperate with
Catiline and to conspire with Lentulus, to give your country the exact
opposite of advantageous counsel, to discharge none of the duties laid
upon you by it, and thus to remain at home under a burden of wickedness
instead of displaying uprightness and being exiled. Accordingly, if you
have any care for reputation, it is far preferable for you to have been
driven out, guilty of no wrong, than to have remained at home by
executing some villainy; for, among other considerations, shame attaches
to the men who have unjustly cast one forth, but not to the man who is
wantonly expelled.

[-26-] "Moreover, the story as I heard it was that you did not depart
unwillingly nor after conviction, but of your own accord; that you hated
to live with them, seeing that you could not make them better and would
not endure to perish with them, and that you were exiled not from your
country but from those who were plotting against her. Consequently they
would be the ones dishonored and banished, having cast out all that is
good from their souls, but you would be honored and fortunate, as being
nobody's slave in unseemly fashion and possessing all fitting qualities,
whether you choose to live in Sicily, in Macedonia, or anywhere else in
the world. Surely it is not localities that give either good fortune or
unhappiness of any sort, but each man makes for himself both country and
happiness always and everywhere. This is what Camillus had in mind when
he was glad to dwell in Ardea; this is the way Scipio reckoned when he
lived his life out without grieving in Liternum. What need is there to
mention Aristides or to cite Themistocles, men whom exile rendered more
esteemed, or Anni[44] ... or Solon, who of his own accord left home for
ten years?

"Therefore do you likewise cease to consider irksome any such thing as
pertains neither to our physical nor to our spiritual nature, and do not
vex yourself at what has happened. For to us belongs no choice as I told
you, of living as we please, but it is quite requisite for us to endure
what the Divinity determines. If we do this voluntarily, we shall not be
grieved: if involuntarily, we shall not escape at all what is fated and
we shall lay upon ourselves besides the greatest of ills,--distressing
our hearts to no purpose. The proof of it is that men who bear
good-naturedly the most outrageous fortunes do not regard themselves as
being in any very dreadful circumstances, while those that are disturbed
at the lightest disappointments feel as if all human ills were theirs.
And, among people in general, some who handle fair conditions badly and
others who handle unfavorable conditions well make their good or ill
fortune appear even in the eyes of others to be of precisely the same
nature as they figure it to themselves. [-27-] Bear this in mind, then,
and be not cast down by your present state, nor grieve if you learn that
the men who exiled you are flourishing. In general the successes of men
are vain and ephemeral, and the higher a man climbs as a result of them
the more easily, like a breath, does he fall, especially in partisan
conflicts. Borne along in a tumultuous and unstable medium they differ
little, or rather not at all, from ships in a storm, but are carried up
and then down, now hither, now yon; and if they make the slightest
error, they sink altogether. Not to mention Drusus or Scipio or the
Gracchi or some others, remember how Camillus the exile later came off
better than Capitolinus, and remember how much Aristides subsequently
surpassed Themistocles.

"Do you, then, as well, entertain a strong hope that you will be
restored; for you have not been expelled on account of wrong doing, and
the very ones who drove you forth will, as I take it, seek for you,
while all will miss you. [-28-] But if you continue in your present
state,--as give yourself no care about it, even so. For if you lean to
my way of thinking you will be quite satisfied to pick out a little
estate on the coast and there carry on at the same time farming and some
historical writing, like Xenophon, like Thucydides. This form of
learning is most lasting and most adaptable to every man, every
government, and exile brings a leisure in some respects more productive.
If, then, you wish to become really immortal, like those historians,
imitate them. Necessities you have in sufficiency and you lack no
measure of esteem. And, if there is any virtue in it, you have been
consul. Nothing more belongs to those who have held office a second, a
third, or a fourth time, except an array of idle letters which benefit
no man, living or dead. Hence you would not choose to be Corvinus or
Marius, the seven times consul, rather than Cicero. Nor, again, are you
anxious for any position of command, seeing that you withdrew from one
bestowed upon you because you scorned the gains to be had from it and
scorned a brief authority that was subject to the scrutiny of all who
chose to practice sycophancy, matters I have mentioned not because any
one of them is requisite for happiness, but because, since it was best,
you have been engaged in politics enough to learn from it the difference
in lives and to choose the one but reject the other, to pursue the one
but avoid the other.

"Our life is but short and you ought not to live all of it for others,
but by this time to grant a little to yourself. Consider how much quiet
is better than disturbance and a placid life than tumults, freedom than
slavery, and safety than dangers, that you may feel a desire to live as
I am urging you to do. In this way you will be happy, and your name
because of it shall be great,--yes, always, whether you are alive or

[-29-] "If, however, you are eager for a return and hold in esteem a
brilliant political career,--I do not wish to say anything unpleasant,
but I fear, as I cast my eyes on the case and call to mind your freedom
of speech, and behold the power and numbers of your adversaries, that
you may meet defeat once again. If then you should encounter exile, you
can merely change your mind, but if you should incur some fatal
punishment you will be unable to repent. Is it not assuredly a dreadful,
a disgraceful thing to have one's head cut off and set up in the Forum,
if it so happen, for any one, man or woman, to insult? Do not hate me as
one foreboding evil to you: I but give you warning; be on your guard. Do
not let the fact that you have certain friends among the influential men
deceive you. You will get no help against those hostilely disposed from
the men who seem to love you; this you probably know by experience.
Those who have a passion for domination regard everything else as
nothing in comparison with obtaining what they desire: they often give
up their dearest friends and closest kin in exchange for their bitterest

[-30-] On hearing this Cicero grew just a little easier in mind. His
exile did not, in fact, last long. He was recalled by Pompey himself,
who was most responsible for his expulsion. The reason was this.

Clodius had taken a bribe to deliver Tigranes the younger, who was even
then still in confinement at the abode of Lucius Flavius, and had let
him go. He outrageously insulted Pompey and Grabinius who had been
incensed at the proceeding, inflicted blows and wounds upon their
followers, broke to pieces the consul's rods, and dedicated his
property. Pompey, enraged by this and particularly because the authority
which he himself had restored to the tribunes Clodius had used against
him, was willing to recall Cicero, and immediately began through the
agency of Ninnius to negotiate for his return.

The latter watched for Clodius to be absent and then introduced in the
senate the motion in Cicero's behalf. When another one of the tribunes
opposed him, he not only went into the matter at some length, intimating
that he should communicate it also to the people, but he furthermore
opposed Clodius once for all at every point. From this ensued disputes
and many consequent woundings on both sides. But before matters reached
that point Clodius felt anxious to get Cato out of the way so that he
might the more easily be successful in the business he had in hand, and
likewise to take measures against Ptolemy who then held Cyprus, because
the latter had failed to ransom him from the pirates. Hence he made the
island public property and despatched Cato, very loath, to attend to its

[-31-] While this went on in the city, Caesar found no hostility in Gaul:
everything was absolutely quiet. The state of peace, however, did not
continue, but to one war which at first arose against him another was
added, so that his greatest wish was fulfilled of making war against and
setting right everything at once.

The Helvetians, who abounded in numbers and had not land sufficient for
their populous condition, refused to send out a part to form a colony
for fear that separated they might be more subject to plots on the part
of the tribes whom they had once injured. They decided all to leave
their homes, with the intention of transferring their dwelling-place to
some other larger and better country, and burned all their villages and
cities so as to prevent any one's regretting the migration. After adding
to their numbers some others who wanted the same changes, they started
off with Orgetorix as leader,--their intention being to cross the Rhone
and settle somewhere near the Alps.

When Caesar severed the bridge and made other preparations to hinder them
from crossing, they sent to him to ask a right of way and promised in
addition to do no harm to Roman territory.

And though he had the greatest distrust of them and had not the
slightest idea of allowing them to proceed, yet, because he was still
poorly equipped he answered that he wished to consult his lieutenants
about their requests and would give them their reply on a stated day. In
fact he offered some little hope of his granting them the passage.
Meanwhile he dug ditches and erected walls in commanding positions, so
that their road was made impassable.

[-32-] Accordingly the barbarians waited a little time, and then, when
they heard nothing as agreed, they broke camp and proceeded through the
Allobroges's country, as they had started. Encountering the obstacles
they turned aside into Sequanian territory and passed through their land
and that of the Aedui, who gave them a free passage on condition that
they do no harm. Not abiding by their covenant, however, they plundered
the Aeduans' country. Then the Sequani and Aedui sent to Caesar to ask
assistance, and begged him not to let them perish.

Though their statements did not correspond with their deeds, they
nevertheless obtained what they requested. Caesar was afraid the
Helvetians might turn also against Tolosa and chose to drive them back
with the help of the other tribes rather than to fight them after they
had effected a reconciliation,--which, it was clear, would otherwise be
the issue. For these reasons he fell upon the Helvetians as they were
crossing the Arar, annihilated in the very passage the last of the
procession and alarmed those that had gone ahead so much by the
suddenness and swiftness of the pursuit and the report of their loss,
that they desired to come to some agreement guaranteeing land. [-33-]
They did not, however, reach any terms; for when they were asked for
hostages they became offended, not because they were distrusted but
because they disliked to give hostages to any one. So they disdained a
truce and went forward again.

Caesar's cavalry had galloped far ahead of the infantry and was
harassing, incidentally, their rear guards, when they faced about with
their horse and conquered it. As a result they were filled with pride,
and thinking that he had fled, both because of the defeat and because
owing to a lack of provisions he was turning aside to a city that was
off the road, they abandoned further progress to pursue after him. Caesar
saw this, and fearing their impetus and numbers hurried with his
infantry to some higher ground but sent forward his horsemen to engage
the enemy till he should have marshaled his forces in a suitable place.
The barbarians routed them a second time and were making a spirited rush
up the hill when Caesar with forces drawn up dashed down upon them
suddenly from his commanding position and without difficulty repulsed
them, while they were scattered. After these had been routed some others
who had not joined in the conflict--and owing to their multitude and
eagerness not all had been there at once--took the pursuers in the rear
and threw them into some confusion, but effected nothing further. For
Caesar after assigning the fugitives to the care of his cavalry himself
with his heavy-armed force turned his attention to the others. He was
victorious and followed to the wagons both bodies, mingled in their
flight; and there, though from these vehicles they made a vigorous
defence, he vanquished them. After this reverse the barbarians were
divided into two parties. The one came to terms with him, went back
again to their native land whence they had set out, and there built up
again the cities to live in. The other refused to surrender arms, and,
with the idea that they could get back again to their primeval
dwelling-place, set out for the Rhine. Being few in numbers and laboring
under a defeat they were easily annihilated by the allies of the Romans
through whose country they were passing.

[-34-] So went the first war that Caesar fought; but he did not remain
quiet after this beginning. Instead, he at the same time satisfied his
own desire and did his allies a favor. The Sequani and Aedui had marked
the trend of his wishes[45] and had noticed that his deeds corresponded
with his hopes: consequently they were willing at one stroke to bestow a
benefit upon him and to take vengeance upon the Celts that were their
neighbors. The latter had at some time in the past crossed the Rhine,
cut off portions of their territory, and, holding hostages of theirs,
had rendered them tributaries. And because they happened to be asking
what Caesar was yearning for, they easily persuaded him to assist them.

Now Ariovistus was the ruler of those Celts: his dominion had been
ratified by action of the Romans and he had been registered among their
friends and allies by Caesar himself, in his consulship. In comparison,
however, with the glory to be derived from the war and the power which
that glory would bring, the Roman general heeded none of these
considerations, except in so far as he wished to get some excuse for the
quarrel from the barbarian so that it should not be thought that there
was any grievance against him at the start. Therefore he sent for him,
pretending that he wanted to hold some conversation with him.
Ariovistus, instead of obeying, replied: "If Caesar wishes to tell me
anything, let him come himself to me. I am not in any way inferior to
him, and a man who has need of any one must always go to that person."
At this the other showed anger on the ground that he had insulted all
the Romans, and he immediately demanded of him the hostages of the
allies and forbade him either to set foot on their land or to bring
against them any auxiliary force from home. This he did not with the
idea of scaring him but because he hoped to make him furious and by that
means to gain a great and fitting pretext for the war. What was expected
took place. The barbarian, enraged at the injunctions, made a long and
outrageous reply, so that Caesar no longer bandied words with him but
straightway, before any one was aware of his intentions, seized on
Vesontio, the city of the Sequani, in advance.

[-35-] Meanwhile reports reached the soldiers. "Ariovistus is making
vigorous preparations," was "There are many other Celts, some of whom
have already crossed the Rhine undoubtedly to assist him, while others
have collected on the very bank of the river to attack us suddenly," was
another. Hence they fell into deep dejection. Alarmed by the stature of
their enemies, by their numbers, their boldness, and consequent ready
threats, they were in such a mood as to feel that they were going to
contend not against men, but against uncanny and ferocious beasts. And
the talk was that they were undertaking a war which was none of their
business and had not been decreed, merely on account of Caesar's personal
ambition; and they threatened, also, to leave him in the lurch if he
should not change his course. He, when he heard of it, did not make any
address to the body of soldiers. It was not a good plan, he thought, to
discuss such matters before the multitude, especially when his words
would reach the enemy; and he was afraid that they might by refusing
obedience somehow raise a tumult and do some harm. Therefore he
assembled his lieutenants and the subalterns, before whom he spoke as

[-36-] "My friends, we must not, I think, deliberate about public
interests in the same way as about private. In fact, I do not see that
the same mark is set up for each man privately as for all together
publicly. For ourselves it is proper both to plan and to perform what
looks best and what is safest, but for the public what is most
advantageous. In private matters we must be energetic: so only can a
good appearance be preserved. Again, a man who is freest from outside
entanglements is thought to be also safest. Yet a state, especially if
holding sovereignty, would be very rapidly overthrown by such a course.
These laws, not drawn up by man but enacted by nature herself, always
did exist, do exist, and will exist so long as the race of mortals

"This being so, no one of you at this juncture should have an eye to
what is privately pleasant and safe rather than to what is suitable and
beneficial for the whole body of Romans. For besides many other
considerations that might naturally arise, reflect that we who are so
many and of such rank (members of the senate and knights) have come here
accompanied by a great mass of soldiers and with money in abundance not
to be idle or careless, but for the purpose of managing rightly the
affairs of our subjects, preserving in safety the property of those
bound by treaty, repelling any who undertake to do them wrong, and
increasing our own possessions. If we have not come with this in mind,
why in the world did we take the field at all instead of staying at home
with some occupation or other and on our private domains? Surely it were
better not to have undertaken the campaign than when assigned to it to
throw it over. If, however, some of us are here because compelled by the
laws to do what our country ordains, and the greater number voluntarily
on account of the honors and rewards that come from wars, how could we
either decently or without sin be false at once to the hopes of the men
that sent us forth and to our own? Not one person could grow so
prosperous as a private citizen as not to be ruined with the
commonwealth, if it fell. But if the republic succeeds, it lifts all
fortunes and each one individually.

[-37-] "I am not saying this with reference to you, my comrades and
friends who are here: you are not in general ignorant of the facts, that
you should need to learn them, nor do you assume an attitude of contempt
toward them, that you should require exhortation. I am saying it because
I have ascertained that there are some of the soldiers who themselves
are talking to the effect that the war we have taken up is none of our
business, and are stirring up the rest to sedition. My purpose is that
you yourselves may as a result of my words show a more ardent zeal for
your country and teach them all they should know. They would be apt to
receive greater benefit in hearing it from you privately and often than
in learning it but once from my lips. Tell them, then, that it was not
by staying at home or shirking campaigns or avoiding wars or pursuing
idleness that our ancestors made the State so great, but it was by
bringing their minds to venture readily everything that they ought and
by working eagerly to the bitter end with bodily labor for everything
that pleased them, by regarding their own things as belonging to others
but acquiring readily the possessions of their neighbors as their own,
while they saw happiness in nothing else than in doing what was required
of them and held nothing else to be ill fortune than resting inactive.
Accordingly, as a result of this policy those men, who had been at the
start very few and possessed at first a city than which none was more
diminutive, conquered the Latins, conquered the Sabines, mastered the
Etruscans, Volsci, Opici, Leucanians and Samnites, in one word
subjugated the whole land bounded by the Alps and repulsed all the alien
tribes that came against them.

[-38-] "The later Romans, likewise, and our own fathers imitated them,
not being satisfied with their temporary fortune nor content with what
they had inherited, and they regarded sloth as their sure destruction
but exertion as their certain safety. They feared that if their
treasures remained unaugmented they would be consumed and worn away by
age, and were ashamed after receiving so rich a heritage to make no
further additions: thus they performed greater and more numerous

"Why should one name individually Sardinia, Sicily, Macedonia,
Illyricum, Greece, Ionic Asia, the Bithynians, Spaniards, Africans? I
tell you the Carthaginians would have given them plenty of money to stop
sailing against that city, and so would Philip and Perseus to stop
making campaigns against them; Antiochus would have given much, his
children and descendants would have given much to let them remain on
European soil. But those men in view of the glory and the greatness of
the empire did not choose to be ignobly idle or to enjoy their wealth in
confidence, nor did the elders of our own generation who even now are
still alive.

"They knew well that the same practices as acquire good things serve
also to preserve them: hence they made sure many of their original
belongings and acquired many new ones. What need is there here to
catalogue in detail Crete, Pontus, Cyprus, Asiatic Iberia, Farther
Albania, both Syrian nations, each of the two Armenias, the Arabians,
the Palestinians? We did not even know their names accurately in the old
days: yet now we lord it over some ourselves and others we have bestowed
upon various persons, insomuch that we have gained from them income and
powers and honors and alliances.

[-39-] "With such examples before you, then, do not bring shame upon our
fathers' deeds nor let slip that empire which is now the greatest. We
cannot deliberate in like manner with the rest of mankind who possess no
similar advantages. For them it suffices to live in ease and, with
safety guaranteed, to be subservient to others, but for us it is
inevitable to toil and march and amid dangers to preserve our existing
prosperity. Against this prosperity many are plotting. Every object
which surpasses others attracts both emulation and jealousy; and
consequently an eternal war is waged by all inferiors against those who
excel them in any respect. Hence we either ought not from the first to
have increased, thus differing from other men, or else, since we have
grown so great and have gained so many possessions, it has been fated
that we should either rule these firmly or ourselves perish utterly. For
it is impossible for men who have advanced to so great reputation and
such vast power to live apart and without danger. Let us therefore obey
Fortune and not repel her, seeing that she voluntarily and self-invited
belonged to our fathers and now abides with us. This result will not be
reached if we cast away our arms and desert the ranks and sit idly at
home or wander among our allies. It will be reached if we keep our arms
constantly in hand--this is the only way to preserve peace--and practice
warlike deeds in the midst of dangers--this is the only way we shall
avoid fighting forever--and aid promptly those allies that ask us--in
this way we shall get more--and do not indulge those enemies who are
always turbulent--in this way no one will any longer care to wrong us.

[-40-] "For if some god had actually become our sponsor that, even if we
should fail to do this, no one would plot against us and we should
forever enjoy in safety all that we have won, it would still be
disgraceful to say that we ought to keep quiet; yet those who are
willing to do nothing that is requisite would have some show of excuse.
But, as a fact, it is inevitable that men who possess anything should be
plotted against by many, and it behooves us to anticipate their attacks.
One class that holds quietly to its own possessions incurs danger even
for these, while another without any compulsion employs war to acquire
the possessions of others and keeps them. No one who is in terror
regarding his own goods longs for those of his neighbors; for the fear
concerning what he already has effectually deters him, from meddling in
what does not belong to him. Why then does any man say such a thing as
this,--that we must not all the time be gaining something more!

"Do you not recall, partly from hearsay and partly from observation,
that none of the Italian races refrained from plotting against our
country until our ancestors brought war into their territories, nor did
the Epirots until they crossed over into Greece? Philip did not refrain,
but intended to make a campaign against Italy until they wrought harm to
his land in advance. Nor was there hesitation on the part of Perseus, of
Antiochus, of Mithridates, until they were subjected to the same
treatment. And why must one mention the remaining cases? For a while the
Carthaginians suffered no damage at our hands in Africa, and crossed
into Italy, where they overran the country, sacked the towns and almost
captured the City itself; but when war began to be made against them
they decamped altogether from our land. One might instance this same
course of events in regard to the Gauls and Celts. For these people
while we remained on this side of the Alps often crossed them and
ravaged a large part of Italy. But when we ventured at last to make a
campaign beyond the mountains and to surround them with war, and
actually detached a portion of their territory, we never again saw any
war begun by them in Italy except once. When, accordingly, in the face
of these facts anybody says that we ought not to make war he simply says
that we ought not to be rich, ought not to rule others, ought not to be
free, to be Romans. Just as you would not endure it if a man should say
any of these things, but would kill him even as he stood before you, so
now also, my comrades, assume a like attitude toward those who utter the
other form of statement, judging their disposition not by their words
but by their acts.

[-41-] "Now no one of you would contend, I think, that these are not the
right kind of ideas to entertain. If, however, any one thinks that the
fact of no investigation having been made about this war before the
senate and of no vote having been passed in presence of the assembly is
a reason why we need be less eager, let him reflect that of all the wars
which have ever fallen to our lot some, to be sure, have come about as a
result of preparation and previous announcement, but others equally on
the spur of the moment. For this reason all uprisings that are made
while we are staying at home and keeping quiet and in which the
beginning of the complaints arises from some embassy both need and
demand an enquiry into their nature and the introduction of a vote,
after which the consuls and praetors must be assigned to them and the
forces sent out: but all that come to light after persons have already
gone forth and taken the field are no longer to be brought up for
decision, but to be taken hold of in advance, before they increase, as
matters decreed and ratified by Necessity herself.

"Else for what reason did the people despatch you to this point, for
what reason did they send me immediately after my consulship? Why did
they, on the one hand, elect me to hold command for five years at one
time, as had never been done before, and on the other hand equip me with
four legions, unless they believed that we should certainly be required
to fight, besides? Surely it was not that we might be supported in
idleness or traveling about to allied cities and subject territory prove
a worse bane to them than an enemy. Not a man would make this assertion.
It was rather that we might keep our own land, ravage that of the enemy,
and accomplish something worthy both of our numbers and our
expenditures. Therefore with this understanding both this war and every
other whatsoever has been entrusted, has been delivered to us. They
acted very sensibly in leaving in our hands the decision as to whom we
should fight against, instead of voting for the war themselves. For they
would not have been able to understand thoroughly the affairs of our
allies, being at such a distance from them, and would not have taken
measures against known and prepared enemies at an equally fitting
moment. So we, to whom is left at once the decision and the execution of
the war, by turning our weapons immediately against foes that are
actually in the field shall not be acting in an unauthorized or unjust
or incautious manner.

[-42-] "But suppose some one of you interrupts me with the following
objection: 'What has Ariovistus done so far out of the way as to become
an enemy of ours in Place of a friend and ally?' Let any such man
consider the fact that one has to defend one's self against those who
are undertaking to do any wrong not only on the basis of what they do,
but also on the basis of what they intend, and has to check their growth
in advance, before suffering some hurt, instead of waiting to have some
real injury inflicted and then taking vengeance. Now how could he better
be proven to be hostile, yes, most hostile toward us than from what he
has done? I sent to him in a friendly way to have him come to me and
deliberate in my company about present conditions, and he neither came
nor promised that he would appear. And yet what did I do that was unfair
or unfitting or arrogant in summoning him as a friend and ally? What
insolence and wantonness rather, has he omitted in refusing to come? Is
it not inevitable that he did this from one of two reasons, either that
he suspected he should suffer some harm or that he felt contempt for me?
Well, if he had any suspicions he convicted himself most clearly of
conspiring against us. For no one that has not endured any injury is
suspicious toward us nor does one become so as a result of an upright
and guileless mind: no, it is those who have prepared to wrong others
that are ready to be suspicious of them because of their own conscience.
If, again, nothing of this sort was at the bottom of his action, but he
merely looked down on us and insulted us with overweening words, what
must we expect him to do when he lays hold of some real project? For
when a man has shown such disdain in matters where he was not going to
gain anything, how has he not been convicted of entire injustice in
intention and in performance?

"Still, he was not satisfied with this, but further bade me come to him,
if I wanted anything of him. [-43-] Do not, I beg of you, regard this
addition as slight. It is really a good indication of his disposition.
That he should have refused to visit me a person speaking in his defence
might refer to shrinking and sickness and fear. But that he should send
a summons to me admits of no excuse, and furthermore proves him to have
acted from no other impulse than a readiness to yield me obedience in no
point and a determination to impose corresponding demands in every case.
With now much insolence and abuse does this very course of his teem! The
proconsul of the Romans summons a man and the latter does not come: then
one of the Allobroges [_sic_] summons the proconsul of the Romans. Do
not think this a small matter and of little moment in that it was I,
Caesar, whom he failed to obey, or because he called me Caesar. It was not
I that summoned him, but the Roman, the proconsul, the rods, the
dignity, the legions: it was not I that was summoned by him, but all of
these. Privately I have no dealings with him, but in common we have all
spoken and acted, received his retort and suffered.

[-44-] "Therefore the more that anybody asserts that he has been
registered among our friends and among our allies, the more he will
prove him to deserve our hatred. Why? Because acts such as not even any
of our admittedly bitterest foes has ever ventured to perform have been
committed by Ariovistus under the titles of friendship and of alliance;
it looks as though he had secured them for the very purpose of having a
chance to wrong us with impunity. On the other hand, our former treaty
with him was not made with the idea of being insulted and plotted
against, nor will it now be we who break the truce. For we sent envoys
to him as to one who was still a friend and ally, but he--well you see
how he has used us. Accordingly just as when he chose to benefit us and
desired to be well treated in return he justly obtained his wishes, so
now, too, when he does the opposite of that in everything, with thorough
justice would he be held in the position of a foe. Do not be surprised
that whereas once upon a time I myself did some little business in his
behalf both in the senate and before the people I now speak in this way.
So far as I am concerned my sentiments are the same now as then: I am
not changing front. And what are they? To honor and reward the good and
faithful, but to dishonor and punish the evil and unfaithful. It is he
that is changing front, in that he makes an unfair and improper use of
the privileges bestowed by us.

[-45-] "As to its being most just, then, for us to fight against him no
one, I think, will have any contention to make. And that he is neither
invincible nor even a difficult adversary you can see from the other
members of his race whom you have often conquered before and have
recently conquered very easily, and you can calculate further from what
we learn about the man himself. For in general he has no native force
that is united and welded together, and at present, since he is
expecting no reverse, he utterly lacks preparation. Again, not one of
his countrymen would readily aid him, not even if he makes most tempting
offers. Who would choose to be his ally and fight against us before
receiving any injury at our hands? Is it not rather likely that all
would cooeperate with us, instead of with him,--from a desire to
overthrow his principality, which joins theirs, and obtain from us some
share of his territory?

"Even if some should band together, they would not prove at all superior
to us. For, to omit the rest,--our numbers, our age, our experience, our
deeds,--who is there ignorant of the fact that we have armor over all
our body alike, whereas they are for the most part naked, and that we
employ both plan and arrangement, whereas they, unorganized, rush at
everything in a rage. Be sure not to dread their charge nor the
greatness of either their bodies or their shout. For voice never yet
killed any man, and their bodies, having the same hands as we, can
accomplish no more, but will be capable of much greater damage through
being both big and naked. And though their charge is tremendous and
headlong at first, it is easily exhausted and lasts but a short time.
[-46-] To you who have doubtless experienced what I mention and have
conquered men like them I make these suggestions so that you need not
appear to have been influenced by my talk and may really feel a most
steadfast hope of victory as a result of what has already been
accomplished. However, a great many of the very Gauls who are like them
will be our allies, so that even if these nations did have anything
terrible about them, it will belong to us as well as to the others.

"Do you, then, look at matters in this way and instruct the rest. I
might as well tell you that even if some of you do hold opposite views,
I, for my part, fight just as I am and will never abandon the position
to which I was assigned by my country. The tenth legion will be enough
for me. I am sure that they, even if there should be need of going
through fire, would readily go through it naked. The rest of you be off
the quicker the better and cease consuming supplies here to no purpose,
recklessly spending the public money, laying claim to other men's
labors, and appropriating the plunder gathered by others."

[-47-] At the end of this speech of Caesar's not only did no one raise an
objection, even if some thought altogether the opposite, but they all
approved his words, especially those who were suspected by him of
spreading the talk they had heard mentioned. The soldiers they had no
difficulty in persuading to yield obedience: some had of their own free
will previously decided to do so and the rest were led to that course
through emulation of them. He had made an exception of the tenth legion
because for some reason he always felt kindly toward it. This was the
way the government troops were named, according to the arrangement of
the lists; whence those of the present day have similar titles.

When they had been thus united, Caesar, for fear that by delay they might
again become indifferent, no longer remained stationary, but immediately
set out and pressed forward against Ariovistus. By the suddenness of his
approach he so alarmed the latter that he forced him to hold a
conference with him regarding peace. They did not come to terms,
however, since Caesar wished to impose all commands and Ariovistus
refused to obey at all.

War consequently broke forth; and not only were the two chief parties
interested on the alert, but so were also all the allies and enemies of
both sides in that region; for they felt sure that the battle between
them would take place in the shortest possible time and that they
themselves should have to serve in every way those who once conquered.
The barbarians had the superiority in numbers and in size of bodies, but
the Romans in experience and armor. To some extent also Caesar's skill in
planning was found to counterbalance the fiery spirit of the Celts and
their disorderly, headlong charge. As a result, then, of their being
evenly matched, their hopes and consequent zeal were in perfect

[-48-] While they were encamped opposite each other the women on the
barbarian side after divination forbade the men to engage in any battle
before the new moon. For this reason Ariovistus, who already paid great
heed to them whenever they took any such action, did not join in
conflict with his entire force immediately, although the Romans were
challenging him to come out. Instead, he sent out the cavalry together
with the foot soldiers assigned to them and did the other side severe
injury. Scornfully elated by his success he undertook to occupy a
position beyond the line of their trench. Of this he held possession,
while his opponents occupied in turn another. Then, although Caesar kept
his army drawn up outside until afternoon, he would not proceed to
battle, but when his foe toward evening retired he suddenly came after
them and all but captured their palisade. Since his affairs progressed
so well he recked little any longer of the women, and on the following
day when, according to their daily custom the Romans were marshaled, he
led out his forces against them.

[-49-] The Romans, seeing them advancing from their quarters, did not
remain motionless, but made a forward dash which gave their opponents no
chance to get carefully ordered, and by attacking with a charge and
shout intercepted their javelins in which they had especial confidence.
In fact, they got into such close quarters with them that the enemy
could not employ their pikes or long swords. So the latter used their
bodies in shoving oftener than weapons in fighting and struggled to
overturn whoever they encountered and to knock down whoever withstood
them. Many deprived even of the use of the short swords fought with
hands and mouths instead, dragging down their adversaries, biting,
tearing, since they far surpassed them in the size of their bodies. The
Romans, however, did not suffer any great bodily injuries in
consequence: they closed with their foes and by their armor and skill
somehow proved a match. Finally, after carrying on that sort of battle
for a very long time, late in the day they prevailed. For their daggers,
which were smaller than those of the Gauls and had steel blades, proved
very useful to them: moreover, the men themselves, constrained thereto
by the very labor, lasted better than the barbarians because the
endurance of the latter was not of like quality with the vehemence of
their attacks. The Gauls for these reasons were defeated: they were not
routed, merely because they were unable, through confusion and
feebleness, to flee, and not because they lacked the wish. Three hundred
therefore, more or less, gathered in a body, opposed their shields on
all sides of them and standing upright, apart from the press, proved
hard to move by reason of their solidity: so that they neither
accomplished aught nor suffered aught.

[-50-] The Romans, when their warriors neither advanced against them nor
fled but stood quietly in the same spot as if on towers, likewise laid
aside first of all their short spears which could not be used: and as
they could not with their swords fight in close combat nor reach the
others' heads, where alone the latter, fighting with them exposed, were
vulnerable, they threw down their shields and made an attack. Some by a
long run and others from close at hand leaped upon[46] the foes in some
way and struck them. At this many fell immediately, beneath a single
blow, and many did not fall till after they were dead. They were kept
upright even when dead by the closeness of their formation. In this way
most of the infantry perished either there or near the wagons, according
to how far they were pushed out of line toward them, with wives and
children. Ariovistus with fifty horsemen straightway left the country
and started for the Rhine. He was pursued, but not overtaken, and
escaped on a boat ahead of his followers. Of the rest the Romans entered
the river to kill some, and others the chief himself took up and brought



The following is contained in the Thirty-ninth of Dio's Rome.

How Caesar fought the Belgae (chapters 1-5).

How Cicero came back from exile (chapters 6-11).

How Ptolemy, expelled from Egypt, sought refuge in Rome (chapters

How Cato settled matters in Cyprus (chapters 17-23).

How Pompey and Crassus were chosen consuls (chapters 24-37).

How Pompey's Theatre was dedicated (chapters 38, 39).

How Decimus Brutus, Caesar's lieutenant, conquered the Veneti in a
sea-fight (chapters 40-43).

How Publius Crassus, Caesar's lieutenant, fought the Aquitani (chapters

How Caesar after fighting with some of the Celtae crossed the Rhine: and
about the Rhine (chapters 47-49).

How Caesar crossed over into Britain: and about the island (chapters

How Ptolemy was restored to Egypt by Gabinius, and how Gabinius was
brought to trial for it (chapters 55-85).

Duration of time, four years, in which there were the following
magistrates, here enumerated.

P. Cornelius P.F. Lentulus Spinther, C. Caecilius C.F. Metellus Nepos.
(B.C. 57 = a.u. 697.)

Cn. Cornelius P.F. Lentulus Marcellinus, L. Marcius L.F. Philippus.
(B.C. 56 = a.u. 698.)

Cn. Pompeius Cn. F. Magnus (II), M. Licinius P.F. Crassus (II). (B.C.
55 = a.u. 699.)

L. Domitius Cn. F. Ahenobarbus, Appius Claudius Appi F. Pulcher. (B.C.
54 = a.u. 700.)


[B.C. 57 (_a.u._ 697)]

[-1-] Such was the end of these wars. After this, when the winter had
passed in which Cornelius Spinther and Metellus Nepos began their
consulship, a third war burst upon them. The Belgae, dwelling near the
Rhine with many mingled tribes and extending to the ocean opposite
Britain, had been during the previous epoch at peace with the Romans so
far as concerned a part of their nation, while the rest paid no heed to
them: but now, noting Caesar's prosperity and fearing that he might
advance against them, they made a change of front and by common
agreement (except on the part of the Remi) took counsel against the
Romans and conspired, making Galba their head.

Caesar learned this from the Remi and was on his guard against them:
subsequently he encamped at the river Axona, collected his soldiers all
together and exercised them. He did not venture to come into close
quarters with the enemy, though they were overrunning Roman territory,
until they felt contempt for him, thinking him afraid, and undertook to
destroy the bridge and put a stop to the conveyance of grain, which the
allies brought across it. He was made aware beforehand by deserters that
this was to be done, and by night sent against the foe the light-armed
troops and the cavalry. [-2-] So they, unexpectedly assaulting the
barbarians, killed many of them, so that the following night they all
withdrew thence to their own land, especially since the Aeduans were
reported to have invaded it. Caesar perceived what was going on, but
through ignorance of the country did not dare to pursue them
immediately. At daybreak, however, he took the cavalry, bade the
infantry follow behind, and came up with the fugitives. They proceeded
to give battle, for he was thought to have come with his cavalry alone,
and he delayed them until the infantry arrived. In this way he
surrounded them with his whole force, cut down the majority, and made
terms with the survivors. Later he brought into allegiance some of the
peoples without fighting and some by war.

[-3-] The Nervii voluntarily retired before him from their plain
country,--for they were not a match for his forces,--but betook
themselves into the wooded parts of the mountains, and then, when they
saw him settled in camp,[47] they came charging down unexpectedly.
Opposite Caesar himself they soon turned to flight, but got the better of
the major part of his army, capturing the camp without striking a blow.
When Caesar became aware of this,--he had advanced a little way in
pursuit of those he had routed,--he turned back and came upon them
engaged in pillage within the fortification, where he ensnared and
slaughtered them. After accomplishing this he found no difficulty in
subduing the rest of the Nervii.

[-4-] Meanwhile the Aduatuci, near neighbors of theirs, sprung from the
Cimbri and possessing their spirit, started out as if to assist them but
were overpowered before they effected anything, whereupon they withdrew,
and leaving all their other sites established themselves in one fort,
the strongest. Caesar assaulted it but was for many days repulsed, until
he turned to the making of engines. Then for a time they gazed at the
Romans cutting wood and constructing the machines and through their
inexperience laughed at what was taking place. But when the things were
finished and heavy-armed soldiers upon them approached from all sides,
they were panic-stricken because never before had they seen such an
affair; so they sent the heralds for peace, supplied the soldiers with
provisions, and threw some of their weapons from the wall. When,
however, they saw the machines stripped of men again, and noticed the
latter, as after a victory, following their own hearts' desires, they
changed their minds and recovering courage made a sally by night to cut
them down unawares. But Caesar was carefully managing everything every
moment, and when they fell on the outposts from every side they were
beaten back. Not one of the survivors could any longer obtain pardon,
and they were all sold.

[-5-] When these had been subjugated and others, too, some by him and
many by his lieutenants, winter set in and he retired to
winter-quarters. The Romans at home heard of this and were astonished
that he had seized so many nations, whose names they had known but
imperfectly before, and voted a sacrifice of fifteen days for his
deeds,--something that had never before occurred.

During the same period Servius Galba, acting as his lieutenant, had,
while the season lasted and the army remained a unit, brought to terms
the Varagri, dwelling beside Lake Lemannus and beside the Allobroges as
far as the Alps: some he had mastered by force and others by
capitulation, so that he was even preparing to winter where he was.
When, however, the majority of the soldiers had departed, some on
furloughs because they were not far from Italy, and others elsewhere to
their own possessions, the natives took advantage of this fact and
unexpectedly attacked him. Then he was led by despair to a kind of
frenzy and suddenly dashing out of the winter camp astounded those
attacking him by the strangeness of the move and passing through them
gained the heights. On reaching safety he fought them off and later
enslaved them: he did not winter there, however, but transferred his
quarters to the Allobroges.

[-6-] These were the events in Gaul. Pompey meanwhile had brought about
a vote for the recall of Cicero. The man that he had expelled through
the agency of Clodius he now brought back to help him against that very
person. So prone is human nature to change and in such wise do persons

Book of the day: