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Dio's Rome by Cassius Dio

Part 6 out of 6

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he was riding in from Albanum, some men again called him king, and he
said that his name was not king but Caesar: then when those tribunes
brought suit against the first man that termed him king, he no longer
restrained his wrath, but showed evident irritation, as if these
officials were actually aiming at the stability of his government. For
the moment he took no revenge upon them: later, when they issued public
notice to the effect that they found themselves not at liberty to speak
freely and without molestation for the public good, he appeared
exceedingly angry and brought them into the senate-house, where he
accused them and put their conduct to the vote. He did not put them to
death, though some declared them worthy of that penalty, but first
having removed them from the tribuneship through the motion of Helvius
Cinna, their colleague, he erased their names from the senate. Some were
pleased at this, or pretended to be, on the ground that they would have
no need to incur danger by free speech, and keeping out of politics they
viewed events as from a watch tower. Caesar, however, received an ill
name from this fact, too, that whereas he should have hated those that
applied to him the name of king, he let them go and found fault instead
with the tribunes.

[-11-] Something else that happened not long after these events proved
still more clearly that while pretendedly he shunned the title, in
reality he desired to assume it. When he had entered the Forum at the
festival of the Lupercalia, at which naked boys competed, and was
sitting on the rostra in his golden chair adorned with the royal apparel
and conspicuous by his crown wrought of gold, Antony with his fellow
priests saluted him as king and surrounding his brows with a diadem
said: "The people gives this to you through my hands." He answered that
Jupiter alone was king of the Romans and sent the diadem to him to the
Capitol, yet he was not angry and caused it to be inscribed in the
records that the royalty presented to him by the people through the
consul he had refused to receive. It was accordingly suspected that this
had been done by some pre-arranged plan and that he was anxious for the
name but wished to be somehow compelled to take it, and the consequent
hatred against him was intense. After this certain men at the elections
proposed those tribunes previously mentioned for the office of consul,
and approaching Marcus Brutus and such other persons as were of high
spirit attempted privately to persuade them and incited them to action
publicly. [-12-] They scattered broadcast many letters (taking the
fullest advantage of his having the same name as the great Brutus who
overthrew the Tarquins), declaring that he was not truly that man's
descendant: for _he_ had put to death both his sons, the only ones he
had, when they were mere lads, and was left no offspring surviving. This
attitude was, however, a mere ruse on the part of the majority, adopted
in order that being in family akin to that famous man he might be
induced to undertake similar deeds. They kept continually invoking him,
crying out "Brutus, Brutus!", and adding further: "We need a Brutus."
Finally on the statue of the early Brutus they wrote "Would that thou
wert living," and upon their contemporary's platform (he was praetor at
the time) "Brutus, thou sleepest," and "Thou art not Brutus."

[-13-] These incidents persuaded him, especially as he had displayed
hostility to Caesar from the start, to attack the leader, who had
nevertheless shown himself later his benefactor. He was also influenced
by the fact that he was, as I stated, both nephew and son-in-law of Cato
of Utica so-called. And his wife Portia was the only woman, as they say,
who had knowledge of the plot. She encountered him in the midst of his
meditation upon these very matters and enquired in what he was so
absorbed. When he made no answer, she suspected that she was distrusted
on account of physical weakness, for fear she should reveal something
even unwillingly under torture; hence she performed a noteworthy deed.
She secretly inflicted a deep wound in her thigh to test herself and see
if she could endure painful treatment. And when she found herself not
overdistressed, she despised the wound, and came to him and said: "You,
my husband, though you trusted that my spirit would not utter a secret,
nevertheless were distrustful of my body, and you acted in accordance
with human reason. But I have found that I can make even it keep
silence." Having said this she disclosed her thigh and after making
known the reason for what she had done, said: "Tell me boldly now all
that you are concealing, for to make me speak fire, lashes, and goads
shall alike be powerless. I was not born that kind of woman. Therefore
if you shall still distrust me, it is better for me to die than live. If
such be the case, let no one think me longer the daughter of Cato or
your wife." Hearing this Brutus marveled; and he no longer hid anything
from her but felt strengthened himself and related to her the whole
story. [-14-] After this he obtained as an associate also Gaius Cassius,
who had himself been preserved by Caesar and moreover honored with a
praetorship; he was the husband of Brutus's sister. Next they proceeded
to gather those who were of the same mind as themselves, and these
proved to be not few in number. There is no need of my giving a list of
most of the names, for I might thus become wearisome, but I cannot omit
Trebonius and Decimus Brutus, whom they also named Junius and Albinus.
For these joined in the plot against Caesar though they also had been
greatly benefited by him,--Decimus having been appointed consul for the
second year and assigned to Hither Gaul.

[-15-] They came very near being detected by reason of the number of
those concerned and by their delay. Caesar, however, would not receive
any information about such an undertaking and punished very severely
those who brought any news of the kind. Still, they stood in awe of him
and put the matter off, fearing that although he had no guard they might
be killed by the persons surrounding him at various times; and thus they
ran the risk of being discovered and perishing. Indeed, they would have
suffered this fate, had they not been forced even against their will to
hasten the plot. A report went abroad, true or false after the manner of
reports, that the so-called fifteen priests were declaring that the
Sibyl had said the Parthians should never be captured in any other way
than by a king, and the people were consequently preparing to propose
that this title be granted to Caesar. The conspirators believed this to
be true, and because a vote would be demanded of the officials, among
whom were Brutus and Cassius, owing to the seriousness of the measure,
they felt that they neither dared to oppose it nor could submit to keep
silent, and so hurried on the consummation of the plot before any
business connected with the measure could come up.

[-16-] It had been decided by them to make the attempt in the senate,
for they thought that there Caesar would least expect to be harmed in any
way and would so fall an easier victim, while they would possess
opportunity coupled with security by having their swords instead of
documents brought in boxes, and that the rest being unarmed would be
unable to make any resistance. In case any one should be so rash, they
expected at least that the gladiators, many of whom they had previously
stationed in Pompey's Theatre under the pretext that they were to
practice with arms, would assist them. These were to lie in wait there
in a certain room of the peristyle. The conspirators, when the appointed
day had come, gathered in the senate-hall at dawn and called for Caesar.
[-17-] As for him, he was warned of the plot in advance by the
soothsayers, and was warned also by dreams. The night before he was
slain his wife had a vision of their house fallen in ruins, her husband
wounded by some men and taking refuge in her bosom, and of Caesar being
raised aloft upon the clouds and grasping the hand of Jupiter. Moreover
omens not few nor indistinct crossed his path. The arms of Mars, at that
time deposited at his house by virtue of his position as high priest and
by ancestral custom, made a great noise at night, and the doors of the
chamber where he slept opened of their own accord. The sacrifices which
he offered because of these occurrences indicated nothing favorable and
the birds with which he practiced divination forbade him to leave the
house. After his assassination, finally, some recalled a weighty
incident in connection with his gilded chair,--that the servant, as
Caesar was slow in coming, carried it out of the senate, thinking that he
would have no further need of it.

[-18-] Caesar for this reason was so long in coming that the conspirators
feared there might be a postponement (a rumor circulated, indeed, that
he would remain at home that day), and their plot thus fall through and
they themselves be detected. Therefore they sent Decimus Brutus, as one
appearing to be a devoted friend, to secure his attendance. This man
made light of Caesar's scruples and by adding that the senate was
extremely anxious to behold him, persuaded him to go forward. At this an
image of his which he kept set up in the vestibule fell of its own
accord and was shattered to pieces. He ought then to have changed his
purpose, but instead he paid no attention to this and would not listen
to some one who was giving him information of the plot. He received from
him a little roll in which all the preparations made for the attack had
been accurately inscribed, but did not read it, thinking that it was
some other not very pressing matter. In brief, he was so confident that
to the soothsayer who had warned him to beware of that day he said
jokingly: "Where are your prophecies? Don't you see that the day over
which you were all of a tremble is here and I am alive?" And the other,
they say, answered only this: "Yes, it is here, but not yet gone."

[-19-] Now when he finally reached the senate Trebonius delayed Antony
somewhere at a distance outside. They had planned to kill both him and
Lepidus. But fearing that they might be ill spoken of as a result of the
number of those destroyed, and that it might be said that they had slain
Caesar to gain power and not to free the city, as they pretended, they
did not wish Antony even to be present at his slaughter. As for Lepidus,
he had set out on a campaign and was in the suburbs. Antony was held by
Trebonius in conversation. Meanwhile the rest in a body surrounded Caesar
(he was as easy of access and ready to be addressed as any one could
have wished), and some talked among themselves, while others presented
petitions to him, so that suspicion might be as far from his mind as
possible. When the right moment came, one of them approached him as if
to express his thanks for some favor or other and pulled his cloak from
his shoulder; for this, according to the agreement, served to the
conspirators as a signal raised. Thereupon they attacked him from many
sides at once and wounded him to death, so that by reason of their
numbers Caesar was unable to say or do anything, but veiling his face was
slain with many wounds. This is the truest account. In times past some
have made a declaration like this, that to Brutus who struck him
severely he said: "Thou, too, my child?"

[-20-] A great outcry naturally arose from all the rest who were inside
and who were standing nearby outside at the suddenness of the event and
because they were not acquainted with the slayers, their numbers, or
their intention; and all were thrown into confusion, believing
themselves in danger; so they themselves started in flight by whatever
way each man could, and they alarmed those who met them by saying
nothing definite, but merely shouting out these words: "Run, bolt doors!
Run, bolt doors!" The rest, taking it up from one another as each one
echoed the cries, filled the city with lamentations, and they burst into
shops and houses to hide themselves. Yet the assassins hurried just as
they were to the Forum, indicating both by their gestures and their
shouts not to be afraid. At the same time that they said this they
called continuously for Cicero: but the crowd did not believe that they
were sincere, and was not easily calmed. Late in the day at last they
gradually began to take courage and became quiet, as no one was killed
or arrested. [-21-] When they met in the assembly the assassins had much
to say against Caesar and much in favor of the democracy, and they bade
the people take courage and not expect any harm. They had killed him,
they declared, not to secure power or any other advantage, but in order
that they might be free and independent and be governed rightly. By
speaking such words they calmed the majority, especially since they
injured no one. Fearing for all that that somebody might concert
measures against them the conspirators ascended the Capitoline with the
avowed intention of offering prayer to the gods, and there they spent
the day and night. And at evening they were joined by some of the other
prominent men who had not shared in the plot, but were anxious, when
they saw the perpetrators praised, to secure the glory of it, as well as
the prizes which those concerned expected. With great justice the affair
happened to turn out the opposite way: they did not secure any
reputation for the deed because they had not been partakers of it in any
way, but they shared the danger which fell upon the ones who committed
it just as much as if they themselves had been the plotters.

[-22-] Seeing this, Dolabella likewise did not see fit to keep quiet,
but entered upon the consular office though it did not yet belong to
him, and after a short speech to the people on the situation ascended
the Capitol. While affairs were in this condition Lepidus, learning what
had taken place, by night occupied the Forum with his soldiers and at
dawn delivered a speech against the assassins. Antony immediately after
Caesar's death had fled, casting away his robe of office in order to
escape notice, and had concealed himself through the night. When,
however, he ascertained that the assassins were on the Capitol and
Lepidus in the Forum, he assembled the senate in the precinct of Tellus
and brought forward the business of the hour for deliberation. Some said
one thing, some another, as each of them thought about it: Cicero, whose
advice they followed, spoke to this effect:--

[-23-] "On every occasion I think no one ought to say anything merely
for the sake of winning favor or to show his spite, but to reveal just
what the man in each case thinks to be the best. We demand that those
who are praetors or consuls shall do everything from upright motives, and
if they make any errors we demand an account from them even if their
slip was accidental; and it will be unbearable if in debates, where we
are complete masters of our own opinion, we shall abandon the common
welfare with a view to private advantage. For this reason, Conscript
Fathers, I have always thought that I ought to advise you on all matters
with simplicity and justice, but especially under the present
circumstances, when, if without being over-captious we come to an
agreement, we shall be preserved ourselves and enable all the rest to
survive, but if we wish to examine everything minutely, I fear ill
fortune--but at the very opening of my address I do not wish to say
anything displeasing. [-24-] Formerly, not very long ago, those who had
arms usually also got control of the government and consequently issued
orders to you as to the subjects on which you must deliberate, but you
could not look forward and see what it was proper for them to do. But
now practically all conditions are so favorably placed that the matter
is in your hands and the responsibility rests upon you; and from your
own selves you may obtain either concord and with it liberty, or
seditions and civil wars again and a master at the close of them.
Whatever you decide to-day all the rest will follow. This being the
state of the case as I see it, I declare that you ought to abandon your
mutual enmities or jealousies or whatever name should be applied to
them, and return to that ancient condition of peace and friendship and
harmony. For you should remember this, if nothing else, that so long as
we enjoyed that kind of government, we acquired lands, fortunes, glory
and allies, but ever since we were led into abusing one another, so far
from growing better we have become decidedly worse off. I am so firmly
convinced that nothing else at present could save the city that if we do
not to-day, at once, with all possible speed, adopt some policy, we
shall never be able to regain our position.

[-25-] "Notice carefully that I am speaking only the truth, of which you
may convince yourselves if you regard present conditions and then
consider our position in old times. Do you not see what is taking
place,--that the populace is again being divided and torn asunder and
that, some choosing this side, and some that, they have already fallen
into two parties and two camps, that the one side has taken timely
possession of the Capitol as if they feared the Gauls or somebody, and
the other side with headquarters in the Forum is preparing to besiege
them and so behaving like Carthaginians, and not as though they too were
Romans? Do you not hear that though formerly citizens often differed,
even to the extent of occupying the Aventine once, and the Capitol, and
some of them the Sacred Mount, as often as they were reconciled one with
another on equal terms (or by yielding but a small point) they at once
stopped hating one another, to live the rest of their lives in such
peace and harmony that in common they carried through successfully many
great wars? As often, on the other hand, as they had recourse to murders
and assassinations, the one side deceived by the justification of
defending themselves against the encroachments of the other, and the
other side by an ambition to appear to be inferior to none, no good ever
came of it. Why need I waste time by repeating to you, who know them
equally well, the names of Valerius, Horatius, Saturninus, Glaucia, the
Gracchi? With such examples before you, not of foreign origin but native
to this land, do not hesitate to strive after the right course and guard
against the wrong. Having from the events of history received a proof of
the outcome of the situation on which you are deliberating, regard my
exhortation no longer as mere words but believe that the welfare of the
community is at stake this instant. Do not for any doubtful theory cast
away the certainty of hope, but trusting to a reliable pledge secure in
advance a sure result for your calculations.

[-26-] "It is in your power, if you receive this evidence that I
mentioned from your own land and your own ancestors, to decide rightly.
And this is why I did not wish to cite instances from abroad, though I
might have mentioned countless of them. One instance, nevertheless, I
will offer from the best and most ancient city from which our fathers
did not disdain to introduce certain laws; for it would be a disgrace
for us who so far surpass the Athenians in strength and sense, to
deliberate less well than they. They were once--of course you all know
this--at variance, and as a result were overcome in war by the
Lacedaemonians and endured a tyranny of the more powerful citizens; and
they did not obtain a respite from evils until they made a compact and
agreement to forget their past injuries, though many and severe, and
never to allow a single reproach because of them or to bear malice
against any one. Now when they had attained such a degree of wisdom,
they not only ceased enduring tyrannies and seditions, but flourished in
every way, regaining their city, laying claim to the sovereignty of the
Greeks, and finally becoming powerful enough to decide frequently on the
preservation or destruction both of the Lacedaemonians themselves and of
the Thebans. Now notice, that if those men who seized Phyle and came
home from the Peirseus had chosen to take vengeance on the city party
for wrongs suffered, they would, to be sure, have seemed to have
performed a justifiable action, but they would have undergone, as well
as have caused, many evils. Just as they exceeded their hopes by
defeating their foes, they might perhaps themselves have been in turn
unexpectedly worsted. [-27-] In such matters there is nothing sure, and
one does not necessarily gain the mastery as a result of being strong,
but vast numbers who were confident have failed and vast numbers who
were looking to defeat somebody have perished before they could strike.
The party that is overreached in any transaction is not bound to be
fortunate just because it is wronged, nor is the party which has the
greater power bound to be successful just because it surpasses, but both
are equally subservient to human uncertainty and the mutability of
fortune, and the issue they secure is often not in accordance with the
favorable prognostications of the one side, but proves to be what the
other actually dared not expect. As a result of this, and of intense
rivalry (for man is strongly given when wronged or believing himself
wronged to become beyond measure bold) many are on many occasions
inspired to undergo dangers even beyond their strength, with the
determination to conquer or at least not to perish utterly without
having shed some blood. So it is that partly conquering and partly
defeated, sometimes gaining the mastery over others and again falling
prostrate themselves, some are altogether annihilated and others gain a
Cadmean victory, as it is called, and at a time when the knowledge can
avail them nothing they perceive that their plans were ill drawn.

[-28-] "That this is so you also have learned by experience. Consider,
Marius for some time had power in seditions; then he was driven out,
collected a force, and accomplished what you know. Likewise Sulla--not
to speak of Cinna or Strabo or the rest who intervene--influential at
first, then subdued, then making himself ruler, authorized every
possible terrible severity."

After that Lepidus, evidently with the intention of following in their
footsteps, instituted a kind of sedition of his own and stirred nearly
the whole of Italy. When we at last got rid of him too, remember what we
suffered from Sertorius and from the exiles with him. What did Pompey,
what did this Caesar himself do?--not to mention here Catiline or
Clodius. Did they not at first fight against each other, and that in
spite of their relationship, and then fill full of countless evils not
only our own city or even the rest of Italy, but practically the entire
world? Well, after Pompey's death and that great destruction of the
citizens, did any quiet appear? Whence could it? By no means. Africa
knows, Spain knows the multitudes who perished in each of those lands.
What then? Did we have peace after this? How is it possible, when Caesar
himself lies slain in this fashion, the Capitol is occupied, all through
the Forum arms are seen, and throughout the city fear exists? [-29-] In
this way, when men begin a seditious career and seek ever to repay
violence with violence and inflict vengeance without care for propriety,
without care for human limitations, but according to their desires and
the power that arms give them, there necessarily arises in each such
case a kind of circle of ills, and alternate requitals of outrages take
place. The fortunate party abounds in insolence and sets no limits to
the advantage it may take, and the party that is crushed, if it does not
perish immediately, rages at the disaster and is eager to take vengeance
on the oppressor, until it sate its wrath. Then the remainder of the
multitude, even if it has not been previously involved in the
transactions, now through pity of the beaten and envy of the victorious
side, cooeperates with the former, fearing that it may suffer the same
evils as the downtrodden element and hoping that it may win the same
success as the force temporarily in the ascendant. Thus the portion of
the citizens that is not concerned is brought into the dispute and one
class takes the evil up against another, through pretence of avenging
the side which is for the moment at a disadvantage, as if they were
repelling a regular, everyday danger; and individually they free
themselves from it, but they ruin the community in every way. [-30-] Do
you not see how much time we have lost in fighting one another, how many
great evils we have endured meanwhile, and, what is worse than that,
inflicted? And who could count the vast mass of money of which we have
stripped our allies and robbed the gods, which furthermore we have
contributed ourselves from what we did not possess, and then expended it
against one another? Or who could number the mass of men that have been
lost, not only of ordinary persons (that is beyond computation) but of
knights and senators, each one of whom was able in foreign wars to
preserve the whole city by his life and death? How many Curtii, how many
Decii, Fabii, Gracchi, Marcelli, Scipiones have been killed? Not, by
Jupiter, to repel Samnites or Latins or Spaniards or Carthaginians, but
only to perish themselves in the end. And for those under arms who died,
no matter how deep sorrow one might feel for them, there is less reason
to lament. They entered the battles as volunteers, if it is proper to
call volunteers men compelled by fear, and they met even if an unjust at
least a brave death, in an equal struggle; and in the hope that they
might even survive and conquer they fell without grieving. But how might
one mourn as they deserve those who were pitiably destroyed in their
houses, in the roads, in the Forum, in the senate-chamber even, on the
Capitol even, by violence--not only men but also women, not only those
in their prime, but also old men and children? And after subjecting one
another to so many of these reprisals of such a nature as all our
enemies put together never inflicted upon us (nor were we ever the
authors of anything similar to them), so far from loathing such acts and
manfully wishing to have done with them, we rejoice and hold festivals
and term those who are guilty of them benefactors. Honestly, I cannot
deem this life that we have been leading human; it is rather that of
wild beasts which are consumed by one another.

[-31-] "For what is definitely past, however, why should we lament
further? We cannot now prevent its having happened. Let us fix our
attention upon the future. That is, indeed, the reason why I have been
mentioning former events, not for the purpose of giving a list of
national calamities which ought never to have occurred, but that by
exhibiting them I might persuade you to preserve at least what is left.
This is the only benefit one can derive from evils,--to guard against
ever again enduring anything similar. This is most within your power at
the present moment, while the danger is just beginning, while not many
have yet united, and those who are unruly have gained no advantage over
one another nor suffered any setback, so that by hope of superiority or
anger at inferiority they are led to enter danger heedlessly and
contrary to their own interests. Still, in this great work you will be
successful without undergoing any toil or danger, without spending money
or ordering murders, but simply by voting just this, that no malice
shall be borne on the part of any. [-32-] Even if any errors have been
committed by certain persons, this is not a time to enquire carefully
into them, nor to convict, nor to punish. You are not at the moment
sitting in judgment over any one, that you should need to search out
what is just with absolute accuracy, but you are deliberating about the
situation that has arisen and how the excitement may in the safest way
be allayed. This is something we could not bring about, unless we should
overlook some few things, as we are wont to do in the case of children.
When dealing with them we do not take all matters carefully into
account, and many things we of necessity overlook. For venial sins it is
not right to chastise them remorselessly, but rather to admonish them
gently. And now, since we are not only named fathers of all the people
in common, but are in reality such, let us not enter into a discussion
of all the fine points, lest we all incur ruin; for anybody could find
much fault with Caesar himself so that he would seem to have been justly
slain, or again might bring heavy charges against those that killed him,
so that they would be thought to deserve punishment. But such action is
for men who are anxious to arouse seditions again. It is the task of
those who deliberate rightly not to cause their own hurt by meting out
exact justice, but to win preservation by a use at the same time of
clemency. Accordingly, think of this that has happened as if it had been
a kind of hail storm or deluge that had taken place and give it to
forgetfulness. Now, if never before, gain a knowledge of one another,
since you are countrymen and citizens and relatives, and secure harmony.

[-33-] "Now, that none of you may suspect that I wish to grant any
indulgence to Caesar's assassins to prevent their paying the penalty,
just because I was once a member of Pompey's party, I will state one
fact to you. I think that all of you are firmly of the opinion that I
have never adopted an attitude of friendship or hostility toward any one
for purely personal reasons, but it was always for your sake and for the
public freedom and harmony that I hated the one class and loved the
other. For this reason I will pass over the rest that might be said, and
make merely a brief statement to you. I am so far from doing this that I
mentioned and not looking out for the public safety, that I affirm the
others, too, should be granted immunity for their high-handed acts,
contrary to established law, in Caesar's lifetime, and they ought to keep
the honors, offices, and gifts which they received from him, though I am
not pleased with some of them. I should not advise you to do or to grant
anything further of the kind: but since it has been done, I think you
ought not to be troubled overmuch about any of these matters. For what
loss so far-reaching could you sustain if A or B holds something that he
has obtained outside of just channels and contrary to his deserts as the
benefit you could attain by not causing fear or disturbance to men who
were formerly of influence?

"This is what I have to say for the present, in the face of pressing
need. When feeling has subsided, let us then consider any remaining
subjects of discussion."

[-34-] Cicero by the foregoing speech persuaded the senate to vote that
no one should bear malice against any one else. While this was being
done the assassins also promised the soldiers that they would not undo
any of Caesar's acts. They perceived that the military was mightily ill
at ease for fear it should be deprived of what he had given it, and so
they made haste, before the senate reached any decision whatever, to
anticipate the others' wishes. Next they invited those who were present
there down below to come within hearing distance, and conversed with
them on matters of importance; as a result of the conference they sent
down a letter to the Forum announcing that they would take nothing away
from anybody nor do harm in other ways, and that the validity of all
acts of Caesar was confirmed. They also urged a state of harmony, binding
themselves by the strongest oaths that they would be honest in
everything. When, therefore, the decisions of the senate also were made
known, the soldiers no longer held to Lepidus nor did the others have
any fear of him, but hastened to become reconciled,--chiefly at the
instance of Antony,--quite contrary to his intention. Lepidus, making a
pretence of vengeance upon Caesar, was anxious to institute a revolution
and as he had legions at his command he expected that he would succeed
to his position as ruler and gain the mastery; these were his motives in
endeavoring to further a conflict. Antony, as he perceived his rival's
favorable situation and had not himself any force at his back, did not
dare to adopt any revolutionary measures for the time being, and
furthermore he persuaded Lepidus (to prevent his becoming greater) to
bow to the will of the majority. So they came to terms on the conditions
that had been voted, but those on the Capitol would not come down till
they had secured the son of Lepidus and the son of Antony to treat as
hostages; then Brutus descended to Lepidus, to whom he was related, and
Cassius to Antony, being assured of safety. While dining together they
naturally, at such a juncture, discussed a variety of topics and Antony
asked Cassius: "Have you perhaps got some kind of dagger under your arm
even now?" To which he answered: "Yes, and a big one, if you too should
desire to play the tyrant."

[-35-]This was the way things went at that time. No damage was inflicted
or expected, and the majority were glad to be rid of Caesar's rule, some
of them even conceiving the idea of casting his body out unburied. The
conspirators well pleased did not undertake any further superfluous
tasks and were called "liberators" and "tyrranicides." Later his will
was read and the people learned that he had made Octavius his son and
heir and had left Antony, Decimus, and some of the other assassins to be
the young man's guardians and inheritors of the property in case it
should not come to him, and furthermore that he had directed various
bequests to be given to different persons, and to the city the gardens
along the Tiber, as well as thirty denarii (according to the record of
Octavius himself) or seventy-five according to some others, to each of
the citizens. This news caused an upheaval and Antony fanned the flames
of their resentment by bringing the body most inconsiderately[112] into
the Forum and exposing it covered with blood as it was and with gaping
wounds. There he delivered over it a speech, in every way beautiful and
brilliant but not suited to the state of the public mind at that time.
His words were about as follows:--

[-36-] "If this man had died as a private citizen, Quirites, and I had
happened to be a private citizen, I should not have needed many words
nor have rehearsed all his achievements, but after making a few remarks
about his family, his education, and his character, and possibly
mentioning some of his services to the state, I should have been
satisfied and should have refrained from becoming wearisome to those not
related to him. But since this man has perished while holding the
highest position among you and I have received and hold the second, it
is requisite that I should deliver a twofold address, one as the man set
down as his heir and the other in my capacity as magistrate. I must not
omit anything that ought to be said but speak what the whole people
would have chanted with one tongue if they could have obtained one
voice. I am well aware that it is difficult to hit your precise
sentiments. Especially is it no easy task to treat matters of such
magnitude,--what speech could equal the greatness of the deeds?--and
you, whose minds are insatiable because of the facts that you know
already, will not prove lenient judges of my efforts. If the speech were
being made among men ignorant of the subject, it would be very easy to
content them, for they would be startled by such great deeds: but as the
matter stands, through your familiarity with the events, it is
inevitable that everything that shall be said will be thought less than
the reality. Outsiders, even if through jealousy they should distrust
it, yet for that very reason must deem each statement they hear strong
enough: but your gathering, influenced by good-will, must inevitably
prove impossible to satisfy. You yourselves have profited most by
Caesar's virtues and you demand his praises not half-heartedly, as if he
were no relation, but out of deep affection as one of your very own. I
shall strive therefore to meet your wishes to the fullest extent, and I
feel sure that you will not criticise too closely my command of words or
conception of the subject, but will, out of your kindness of heart, make
up whatever is lacking in that respect.

[-37-] "I shall speak first about his lineage, though not because it is
very brilliant. Yet this too has considerable bearing on the nature of
excellence, that a man should have become good not through force of
circumstances but by inherent power. Those not born of noble parents may
disguise themselves as honest men but may also some day be convicted of
their base origin by innate qualities. Those, however, who possess the
seed of honesty, descending through a long line of ancestors, cannot
possibly help having an excellence which is of spontaneous growth and
permanent. Still, I do not now praise Caesar chiefly because he was
sprung from many noble men of recent times and kings and gods of ancient
days, but because in the first place he was a kinsman of our whole
city,--we were founded by the men that were his ancestors,--and secondly
because he not only confirmed the renown of his forefathers who were
believed by virtue to have attained divinity, but actually increased it;
if any person disputed formerly the possibility of Aeneas ever having
been born of Venus, he may now believe it. The gods in past times have
been reported as possessing some unworthy children, but no one could
deem this man unworthy to have had gods for his ancestors. Aeneas himself
became king, as likewise some of his descendants. This man proved
himself so much superior to them that whereas they were monarchs of
Lavinium and Alba, he refused to become king of Rome; and whereas they
laid the foundation of our city, he raised it to such heights that among
other services he established colonies greater than the cities over
which they ruled.

[-38-] "Such, then, is the state of his family. That he passed through a
childhood and education corresponding to the dignity of his noble birth
how could one feel better assured than by the certain proofs that his
deeds afford? When a man possesses conspicuously a body that is most
enduring and a soul that is most steadfast in the face of all
contingencies alike of peace and war, is it not inevitable that he must
have been reared in the best possible way? And I tell you it is
difficult for any man surpassingly beautiful to show himself most
enduring, and difficult for one who is strong in body to attain greatest
prudence, but most difficult of all for the same man to shine both in
words and in deeds. Now this man--I speak among men who know the facts,
so that I shall not falsify in the least degree, for I should be caught
in the very act, nor heap up exaggerated praises, for then I should
obtain the opposite results of what I wish. If I do anything of the
kind, I shall be suspected with the utmost justice of braggadocio, and
it will be thought that I am making his excellence less than the
reputation which already exists in your own minds. Every utterance
delivered under such conditions, in case it admits even the smallest
amount of falsehood, not only bestows no praise on its subject but
defeats its own ends. The knowledge of the hearers, not agreeing with
the fictitious declaration, takes refuge in truth, where it quickly
finds satisfaction and learns as well what the statement ought to have
been; and then, comparing the two, detects the difference. Stating only
the truth, therefore, I affirm that this Caesar was at the same time most
able in body and most amiable in spirit. He enjoyed a wonderful natural
talent and had been scrupulously trained in every kind of education,
which always enabled him (not unnaturally) to comprehend everything that
was needed with the greatest keenness, to interpret the need most
plausibly, and to arrange and administer matters most prudently. No
shifting of a favorable situation could come upon him so suddenly as to
catch him off his guard, nor did a secret delay, no matter how long the
postponement, escape his notice. He decided always with regard to every
crisis before he came in contact with it, and was prepared beforehand
for every contingency that could happen to him. He understood well how
to discern sharply what was concealed, to dissimulate what was evident
in such a way as to inspire confidence, to pretend to know what was
obscure, to conceal what he knew, to adapt occasions to one another and
to give an account of them, and furthermore to accomplish and cover
successfully in detail the ground of every enterprise. [-39-] A proof of
this is that in his private affairs he showed himself at once an
excellent manager and very liberal, being careful to keep permanently
what he inherited, but lavish in spending with an unsparing hand what he
gained, and for all his relatives, except the most impious, he possessed
a strong affection. He did not neglect any of them in misfortune, nor
did he envy them in good fortune, but he helped the latter to increase
their previous property and made up the deficiencies for the former,
giving some money, some lands, some offices, some priesthoods. Again, he
was wonderfully attached to his friends and other associates. He never
scorned or insulted any one of them, but while courteous to all alike he
rewarded many times over those who assisted him in any project and won
the devotion of the rest by benefits, not bowing to any one of brilliant
position, nor humiliating any one who was bettering himself, but as if
he himself were being exalted through all their successes and acquiring
strength and adornment he took delight in making the largest number
equal with himself. While he behaved thus toward his friends and
acquaintances, he did not show himself cruel or inexorable even to his
enemies, but many of those who had come into collision with him
personally he let off scotfree, and many who had actually made war
against him he released, giving some of them honors and offices. To this
degree was he in every way inclined to right conduct, and not only had
no baseness in his own making, but would not believe that it was found
in anybody else.

[-40-] "Since I have reached these statements, I will begin to speak
about his public services. If he had lived a quiet existence, perhaps
his excellence would never have come to light; but as it was, by being
raised to the highest position and becoming the greatest not only of his
contemporaries but of all the rest who had ever wielded any influence,
he displayed it more conspicuously. For nearly all his predecessors this
supreme authority had served only to reveal their defects, but him it
made more luminous: through the greatness of his excellence he undertook
correspondingly great deeds, and was found to be a match for them; he
alone of men after obtaining for himself so great good fortune as a
result of true worth neither disgraced it nor treated it wantonly. The
brilliant successes which he regularly achieved on his campaigns and the
highmindedness he showed in everyday duties I shall pass over, although
they are so great that for any other man they would constitute
sufficient praise: but in view of the distinction of his subsequent
deeds, I shall seem to be dealing with small matters, if I rehearse them
all with exactness. I shall only mention his achievements while ruling
over you. Even all of these, however, I shall not relate with minute
scrupulousness. I could not possibly give them adequate treatment, and I
should cause you excessive weariness, particularly since you already
know them.

[-41-] "First of all, this man was praetor in Spain, and finding it
secretly hostile did not allow the inhabitants under the protection of
the name of peace to develop into foes, nor chose to spend the period of
his governorship in quiet rather than to effect what was for the
advantage of the nation; hence, since they would not agree to alter
their sentiments, he brought them to their senses without their consent,
and in doing so so far surpassed the men who had previously won glory
against them as keeping a thing is more difficult than acquiring it, and
reducing men to a condition where they can never again become rebellious
is more profitable than rendering them subject in the first place, while
their power is still undiminished. That is the reason that you voted him
a triumph for this and gave him at once the office of consul. As a
result of your decree it became most plainly evident that he had waged
that war not for his own desires or glory, but was preparing for the
future. The celebration of the triumph he waived on account of pressing
business, and after thanking you for the honor he was satisfied with
merely that to secure his glory, and entered upon the consulship. [-42-]
Now all his administrative acts in this city during the discharge of
that office would be verily countless to name. And as soon as he had
left it and been sent to conduct war against the Gauls, notice how many
and how great were his achievements there. So far from causing
grievances to the allies he even went to their assistance, because he
was not suspicious at all of them and further saw that they were
wronged. But his foes, both those dwelling near the friendly tribes, and
all the rest that inhabited Gaul he subjugated, acquiring at one time
vast stretches of territory and at another unnumbered cities of which we
knew not even the names before. All this, moreover, he accomplished so
quickly, though he had received neither a competent force nor sufficient
money from you, that before any of you knew that he was at war he had
conquered; and he settled affairs on such a firm basis and [113] ...,
that as a result Celtica and Britain felt his footstep. And now is that
Gaul enslaved which sent against us the Ambrones and the Cimbri, and is
entirely cultivated like Italy itself. Ships traverse not only the Rhone
or the Arar, but the Mosa, the Liger, the very Rhine, and the very
ocean. Places of which we had not even heard the titles to lead us to
think that they existed were likewise subdued for us: the formerly
unknown he made accessible, the formerly unexplored navigable by his
greatness of purpose and greatness of accomplishment. [-43-] And had not
certain persons out of envy formed a faction against him, or rather us,
and forced him to return here before the proper time, he would certainly
have subdued Britain entire together with the remaining islands
surrounding it and all of Celtica to the Arctic Ocean, so that we should
have had as borders not land or people for the future, but air and the
outer sea. For these reasons you also, seeing the greatness of his mind
and his deeds and good fortune, assigned him the right to hold office a
very long time,--a privilege which, from the hour that we became a
democracy has belonged to no other man,--I mean holding the leadership
during eight whole years in succession. This shows that you thought him
to be really winning all those conquests for you and never entertained
the suspicion that he would strengthen himself to your hurt.

"No, you desired that he should spend in those regions as long a time as
possible. He was prevented, however, by those who regarded the
government as no longer a public but their own private possession, from
subjugating the remaining countries, and you were kept from becoming
lords of them all; these men, making an ill use of the opportunity given
them by his being occupied, ventured upon many impious projects, so that
you came to require his aid. [-44-] Therefore abandoning the victories
within his grasp he quickly brought you assistance, freed all Italy from
the dangers in which it had become involved, and furthermore won back
Spain which had been estranged. Then he saw Pompey, who had abandoned
his fatherland and was setting up a kingdom of his own in Macedonia,
transferring thither all your possessions, equipping your subjects
against you, and using against you money of your own. So at first he
wished to persuade Pompey somehow to stop and change his course and
receive the greatest pledges that he should again attain a fair and
equal position with him; and he sent to him both privately and publicly.
When, however, he found himself unable in any way to effect this, but
Pompey burst all restraints, even the relationship that had existed
between himself and Caesar, and chose to fight against you, then at last
he was compelled to begin a civil war. And what need is there of telling
how daringly he sailed against him in spite of the winter, or how boldly
he assailed him, though Pompey held all the strong positions there, or
how bravely he vanquished him though much inferior in number of
soldiers? If a man wished to examine each feature in detail, he might
show the renowned Pompey to have been a child, so completely was he
outgeneraled at every point.

[-45-] "But this I will omit, for Caesar himself likewise never took any
pride in it, but he accepted it as a dispensation of destiny, repugnant
to him personally. When Heaven had most justly decided the issue of the
battle, what man of those then captured for the first time did he put to
death? Whom, rather, did he not honor, not alone senators or knights or
citizens in general, but also allies and subjects? No one of them either
died a violent death, or was made defendant in court, no individual, no
king, no tribe, no city. On the contrary, some arrayed themselves on his
side, and others at least obtained immunity with honor, so that then all
lamented the men that had been lost. Such exceeding humanity did he
show, that he praised those who had cooeperated with Pompey and allowed
them to keep everything the latter had given them, but hated Pharnaces
and Orodes, because though friends of the vanquished they had not
assisted him. It was chiefly for this reason that he not long after
waged war on Pharnaces, and was preparing to conduct a campaign against
Orodes. He certainly [would have spared] even [Pompey himself if] he had
captured him alive.[114] A proof of this is that he did not pursue him
at once, but allowed him to flee at his leisure. Also he was grieved to
hear of Pompey's death and did not praise his murderers, but put them to
death for it soon after, and even destroyed besides Ptolemy himself,
though a child, because he had allowed his benefactor to perish.

[-46-] "How after this he brought Egypt to terms and how much money he
conveyed to you from there it would be superfluous to relate. And when
he made his campaign against Pharnaces, who already held considerable of
Pontus and Armenia, he was on the same day reported to the rebel as
approaching him, was seen confronting him, engaged in conflict with him,
and conquered him.

"This better than anything else established the truth of the assertion
that he had not become weaker in Alexandria and had not delayed there
out of voluptuousness. For how could he have won that victory so easily
without employing a great store of insight and great force? When now
Pharnaces had fled he was preparing to conduct a campaign at once
against the Parthian, but as certain quarrels were taking place there he
withdrew rather unwillingly, but settled this dispute, too, so that no
one would believe there had been a disturbance. Not a soul was killed or
exiled or even dishonored in any way as a result of that trouble, not
because many might not justly have been punished, but because he thought
it right while destroying enemies unsparingly to preserve citizens, even
if they were poor stuff. Therefore by his bravery he overcame foreigners
in war, but out of his humanity kept unharmed the seditious citizens,
although many of them by their acts had often shown themselves unworthy
of this favor. This same policy he followed again both in Africa and in
Spain, releasing all who had not before been captured and been made
recipients of his mercy. To grant their lives invariably to such as
frequently plotted against him he deemed folly, not humanity. On the
other hand, he thought it quite the duty of a manly man to pardon
opponents on the occasion of their first errors and not to keep an
inexorable anger, yes, and to assign honors to them, but if they clung
to their original course, to get rid of them. Yet why did I say this?
Many of them also he preserved by allowing all his associates and those
who had helped him conquer to save, one each, the life of a captive.

[-47-] "Moreover, that he did all this from inherent excellence and not
from pretence or to gather any advantage, as others in large numbers
have displayed humaneness, the greatest evidence is that everywhere and
under all circumstances he showed himself the same: anger did not
brutalize him nor good fortune corrupt him; power did not alter, nor
authority change him. Yet it is very difficult when tested in so many
enterprises of such a scope and following one another in quick
succession at a time when one has been successful in some, is still
engaged in conducting others, and only suspects the existence of others,
to prove equally efficient on all occasions and to refrain from wishing
to do anything harsh or frightful, if not out of vengeance for the past,
at least as a measure of safeguard for the future. This, then, is enough
to prove his excellence. He was so truly a scion of gods that he
understood but one thing, to save those that could be saved. But if you
want more evidence, it lies in this, that he took care to have those who
warred against him chastised by no other hands than his own, and that he
won back those who in former times had slipped away. He had amnesty
granted to all who had been followers of Lepidus and Sertorius, and next
arranged that safety should be afforded all the survivors among those
proscribed by Sulla; somewhat later he brought them home from exile and
bestowed honors and offices upon the children of all who had been slain
by that tyrant. Greatest of all, he burned absolutely every one of the
letters containing secret information that was found in the tent of
either Pompey or Scipio, not reading or noticing any portion of them, in
order that no one else might derive from them the power to play the
rogue. That this was not only what he said, but what he did, his acts
show clearly. No one as a result of those letters was even frightened,
let alone suffering any great calamity. And no one knows those who
escaped this danger except the men themselves. This is most astonishing
and has nothing to surpass it, that they were spared before being
accused, and saved before encountering danger, and that not even he who
saved their lives learned who it was he pitied.

[-48-] "For these and all his other acts of lawmaking and
reconstruction, great in themselves, but likely to be deemed small in
comparison with those others into which one cannot enter minutely, you
loved him as a father and cherished him as a benefactor, you glorified
him with such honors as you bestowed on no one else and desired him to
be continual head of the city and of the whole domain. You did not
dispute at all about titles, but applied them all to him as being still
less than his merits, with the purpose that whatever was lacking in each
one of them of what was considered a proper expression of the most
complete honor and authority might be made up by what the rest
contributed. Therefore, as regards the gods he was appointed high
priest, as regards us consul, as regards the soldiers imperator, and as
regards the enemy dictator. But why do I enumerate these details, when
in one phrase you called him father of his country,--not to mention the
rest of his titles?

[-49-] "Yet this father, this high priest, this inviolable being, hero,
god, is dead, alas, dead not by the violence of some disease, nor
exhausted by old age, nor wounded abroad somewhere in some war, nor
snatched away irresistibly by some supernatural force: but plotted
against here within the walls--the man that safely led an army into
Britain; ambushed in this city--the man who had increased its circuit;
struck down in the senate-house--the man that had reared another such
edifice at his own charge; unarmed the brave warrior; defenceless the
promoter of peace; the judge beside the court of justice; the governor
beside the seat of government; at the hands of the citizens--he whom
none of the enemy had been able to kill even when he fell into the sea;
at the hands of his comrades--he who had often taken pity on them.
Where, Caesar, was your humaneness, where your inviolability, where the
laws? You enacted many laws to prevent any one's being killed by
personal foes, yet see how mercilessly your friends killed you, and now
slain you lie before us in that Forum through which you often crowned
led triumphal marches, wounded unto death you have been cast down upon
that rostra from which you often addressed the people. Woe for the
blood-bespattered locks of gray, alas for the rent robe, which you
assumed, it seems, only to the end that you might be slain in it!"

[-50-] At this deliverance of Antony's the throng was at first excited,
then enraged, and finally so inflamed with passion that they sought his
murderers and reproached the senators besides, because the former had
killed and the latter had beheld without protest the death of a man in
whose behalf they had voted to offer yearly prayers, by whose Health and
Fortune they took oaths, and whom they had made sacrosanct equally with
the tribunes. Then, seizing his body, some wished to convey it to the
room in which he had been slaughtered, and others to the Capitol and to
burn it there: but being prevented by the soldiers, who feared that the
theatres and temples would be burned to the ground at the same time,
they placed it upon a pyre there in the Forum, just as they were. Even
under these circumstances many of the surrounding buildings would have
been destroyed, had not the soldiers presented an obstacle, and some of
the bolder spirits the consuls forced over the cliffs of the Capitol.
For all that the remainder did not cease their disturbance, but rushed
to the houses of the murderers, and during the excitement they killed
without reason Helvius Cinna, a tribune, and some others; this man had
not only not plotted against Caesar, but was one of his most devoted
friends. Their error was due to the fact that Cornelius Cinna the praetor
had a share in the attack. [-51-] After this the consuls forbade any one
outside the ranks of soldiers to carry arms. They accordingly refrained
from assassinations, but set up a kind of altar on the site of the
pyre--his bones the freedmen had previously taken up and deposited in
the ancestral tomb--and undertook to sacrifice upon it and offer victims
to Caesar, as to a god. This the consuls overturned and punished some who
showed displeasure at the act, also publishing a law that no one should
ever again be dictator. In fact they invoked curses and proclaimed death
as the penalty upon any man who should propose or support such a
measure, and furthermore they fined the present malcontents directly. In
making this provision for the future they seemed to assume that the
shamefulness of the deeds consisted in the names, whereas these
occurrences really arose from the supremacy of arms and the character of
each individual, and degraded the titles of authority in whatever
capacity exercised. For the time being they despatched immediately to
the colonies such as held allotments of land previously assigned by
Caesar; this was from fear that they might cause some disturbance. Of
Caesar's slayers they sent out some, who had obtained governorships, to
the provinces, and the rest to various different places on one pretext
or another: and these persons were honored by many persons as

[-52-] In this way Caesar disappeared from the scene. Inasmuch as he had
been slain in Pompey's edifice and near his statue which at that time
stood there, he seemed in a way to have afforded his rival his revenge;
and this idea gained ground from the fact that tremendous thunder and a
furious rain occurred. In the midst of that excitement there also took
place the following incident, not unworthy of mention. One Gaius Casca,
a tribune, seeing that Cinna had perished as a result of his name being
similar to the praetor's, and fearing that he too might be killed,
because Publius Servilius Casca was one of the tribunes and also one of
the assassins, issued a book which showed that they had in common only
one and the same name and pointed out their difference of disposition.
Neither of them suffered any harm (for Servilius was strongly guarded)
and Gaius won some consideration, so that he is remembered by this act.

[-53-] These were the proceedings, at that time, of the consuls and the
rest. Dolabella was invested with his office by Antony, who feared that
he might cause a sedition, although he was at first not disposed to take
such action, on the ground that Dolabella had not yet the right to it.
When, however, the excitement subsided, and Antony himself was charged
with investigating the acts of Caesar's administration and carrying out
all the latter's behests, he no longer kept within bounds. As soon as he
had got hold of the dead man's documents, he made many erasures, and
many substitutions,--inserting laws as well as other matter. Moreover,
he deprived some of money and offices, which in turn he gave to others,
pretending that in so doing he was carrying out Caesar's directions. Next
he made many seizures on the spot, and collected large sums of money
from individuals, peoples and kings, selling to some land, to others
liberty, to others citizenships, to others exemption from taxes. This
was done in spite of the fact that the senate at first had voted that no
tablet should be set up on account of any contract that Caesar had made
(all such transactions were inscribed on bronze tablets), and later,
when Antony persisted, declaring that many urgent matters had been
provided for by his chief, it had ordered that all the foremost citizens
should join in passing upon them. He, however, paid no attention to
this, and had an utter contempt for Octavius, who as a stripling and
inexperienced in business had declined the inheritance because it was
troublesome and hard to manage: and Antony himself, assuming to be the
heir not only of the property but also of the supremacy of Caesar,
managed everything. One of his acts was to restore some exiles. And
since Lepidus had great power and caused him considerable fear, he gave
his daughter in marriage to this leader's son and made arrangements to
have the latter appointed high priest, so as to prevent any meddling
with enterprises which he had on foot. In order to carry out this plan
with greater ease, he diverted the choice of high priest from the people
back to the priests, and in company with the latter he consecrated him,
performing few or none of the accustomed rites, though he might have
secured the priesthood for himself.


[Footnote 1: As far as chapter 20 this argument of Leunclavius will be
found to follow a different division of Book Thirty-six from that
adopted by Melber and employed in the present translation.]

[Footnote 2: His death occurred early in the year.]

[Footnote 3: This man's name is given as Sextilius by Plutarch (Life of
Lucullus, chapter 25) and Appian (Mithridatic Wars, chapter 84).]

[Footnote 4: Cobet's (Greek: _metepepempto_) in place of Vat. A (Greek:

[Footnote 5: "Valerians" was a name given to the Twentieth Legion. (See
Livy VI, 9.)]

[Footnote 6: _Q. Marcius Rex._]

[Footnote 7: The subject must be Quintus Caecilius Metellus. This is the
point at which the Medicean manuscript (see Introduction) now begins,
and between what goes before and what follows there is an obvious gap of
some kind. A few details touching upon the close of the Cretan war may
be found in Xiphilinus (p. 1, 12-20), as follows:

"And [Metellus] subjugated the entire island, albeit he was hindered and
restrained by Pompey the Great, who was now lord of the whole sea and of
the mainland for a three days' march from the coast; for Pompey asserted
that the islands also belonged to him. Nevertheless, in spite of
Pompey's opposition, Metellus put an end to the Cretan war, conducted a
triumph in memory thereof, and was given the title of Creticus."

It should be noted in passing that J. Hilberg (Zeitschrift f. oest.
Gymn., 1889, p. 213) thinks that the proper place for the chapter
numbered 16 is after 17, instead of before it.]

[Footnote 8: A leaf is here torn out of the first quaternion of the
Medicean MS. An idea of the matter omitted may be gained by comparing
Xiphilinus (p. 5):--"Catulus, one of the foremost men, had said to the
populace: 'If he fail after being sent out on this errand (as not
infrequently happens in many contests, especially on the sea) whom else
will you find in place of him for still more pressing business?' Thereat
the entire throng as if by previous agreement lifted their voices and
exclaimed: 'You!' Thus Pompey secured command of the sea and of the
islands and of the mainland for four hundred etades inland from the

[Footnote 9: Some half dozen words are wanting at this point in the MS.
Those most easily supplied afford the translation here given.]

[Footnote 10: I.e., "City of Victory."]

[Footnote 11: Harmastica (==arx dei Armazi) is meant.]

[Footnote 12: The words [Greek: tou Kurnou pararreontos, enthen de],
required to fill a gap in the sense, supplied by Bekker on the basis of
a previous suggestion by Reiske.]

[Footnote 13: The words [Greek: ho de Pompeios] at the opening of chapter
6 were supplied by Bekker.]

[Footnote 14: Properly called Sinoria.]

[Footnote 15: A gap exists in the Medicean MS. because the first leaf in
the third quaternion is lacking. The omission may be partly filled out
from Xiphilinus (p. 7):

"He returned from Armenia and arbitrated disputes besides conducting
other business for kings and potentates who came to him. He confirmed
some in possession of their kingdoms, added to the principalities of
others, and curtailed and humbled the excessive powers of a few. Hollow
Syria and Phoenicia which had lately ridden themselves of their rulers
and had been made the prey of the Arabians and Tigranes were united.
Antiochus had dared to ask them back, but he did not secure them.
Instead, they were combined into one province and received laws so that
their government was carried on in the Roman fashion."

As to the words at the end of chapter 7, "although her child was with,"
an inkling of their significance may be had from Appian, Mithridates,
chapter 107. Stratonice had betrayed to Pompey a treasurehouse on the
sole condition that if he should capture Xiphares, a favorite son of
hers, he should spare him. This disloyalty to Mithridates enraged the
latter, who gained possession of the youth and slew him, while the
mother beheld the deed of revenge from a distance.]

[Footnote 16: L. _Annius Bellienus_.]

[Footnote 17: L. _Luscius_.]

[Footnote 18: Or "and these were" (according to the MS. reading

[Footnote 19: Xiphilinus adds: "after approaching and offering him

[Footnote 20: I.e., Jehovah.]

[Footnote 21: Sol and Luna: or the sun and moon. The words appear in the
text without any article and may be personified.]

[Footnote 22: Dio attempts in chapters 18 and 19 to explain why the days
of the week are associated with the names of the planets. It should be
borne in mind that the order of the planets with reference to their
distance from the earth (counting from farthest to nearest) is as
follows: Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, Moon. The custom of
naming the days may then have arisen, he says, (1) by regarding the gods
as originally presiding over separate _days_ assigned by the principle
of the tetrachord (I.e., skipping two stars in your count each time as
you go over the list) so that you get this order: the day of Saturn, of
the Sun, of the Moon, of Mars, of Mercury, of Jupiter, of Venus
(Saturday to Friday, inclusive); or (2) by regarding the gods as
properly gods of the _hours_, which are assigned in order, beginning
with Saturn, as in the list above,--and allowing it to be understood
that that god who is found by this system to preside over the _first
hour_ shall also give his name to the day in question.]

[Footnote 23: See Book Thirty-six, chapter 43.]

[Footnote 24: After "join him" there is a gap in the MS. The words
necessary to complete this sentence and to begin the next were supplied
by Reiske.]

[Footnote 25: Cobet (Mnemosyne N.S., X, p. 195) thinks that there is
here a reminiscence of Cicero, _Ad Atticum_, I, 16, 5.]

[Footnote 26: Or _Solo_ (according to the Epitome of the one hundred and
third Book of Livy).]

[Footnote 27: Supplying [Greek: to misein] (as v. Herwerden,

[Footnote 28: The following sentence: "For these reasons, then, he had
both united them and won them over" is probably an explanatory
insertion, made by some copyist. (So Bekker.)]

[Footnote 29: Reading [Greek: proskatastanton] (as Boissevain).]

[Footnote 30: The reading here has been subjected to criticism (compare
Naber in Mnemosyne, XVI, p. 109), but see Cicero, _De Lege Agraria_ 2,
9, 24 and Mommsen, _Staatsrecht_, I^2, 468, 3.]

[Footnote 31: The words [Greek: epeidae outoi] are supplied here by

[Footnote 32: In regard to this matter see Mnemosyne N.S. XIX, p. 106,
note 2. The article in question is by I.M.J. Valeton, who agrees with
Mommsen's conclusions (_Staatsrecht_, III, p. 1058, note 2).]

[Footnote 33: Reading [Greek: pote] with Boissevain. There is apparently
a reference to the year B.C. 100, and to the refusal of Metellus
Numidicus to swear to the _lex Appuleia_.]

[Footnote 34: Following Reiske's arrangement: [Greek: os mentoi ae
aemera aechen, en emellon ...].]

[Footnote 35: The verb is supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 36: Following Reiske's reading: _[Greek: ae ina ta mellonta

[Footnote 37: Gaps in the text supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 38: Gaps in the text supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 39: Gaps in the text supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 40: Gaps in the text supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 41: The suggestion of Boissevain (euthus) or of Mommsen
(authicha) is here adopted in preference to the MS. authis (evidently

[Footnote 42: Verb supplied by Xylander.]

[Footnote 43: Or five hundred miles, since Dio reckons a mile as
equivalent to seven and one-half instead of eight stades.]

[Footnote 44: The MS. is corrupt. Perhaps Hannibal is meant, perhaps

[Footnote 45: Reading [Greek: epithumian] (with Boissevain).]

[Footnote 46: Reading [Greek: enaellonto], proposed in Mnemosyne N.S. X,
p. 196, by Cobet, who compares Caesar's Gallic War I, 52, 5; and adopted
by Boissevain.]

[Footnote 47: Two words to fill a gap are suggested by Bekker.]

[Footnote 48: Four words to fill a gap supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 49: Reading [Greek: paraen] (as Boissevain).]

[Footnote 50: Words equivalent to "the more insistent" are easily
supplied from the context, as suggested by v. Herwerden, Wagner, and

[Footnote 51: This is a younger brother of that Ptolemy Auletes who was
expelled from Egypt and subsequently restored (see chapter 55), and is
the same one mentioned in Book Thirty-eight, chapter 30.]

[Footnote 52: This statement of Dio's appears to be erroneous. See
Cicero, _Ad Familiares_ I, 7, 10, and Mommsen, _Staatsrecht_, 22, 672.]

[Footnote 53: Gap in the MS. supplied by Bekker's conjecture.]

[Footnote 54: Suetonius says "five years" (Life of Caesar, chapter 24),
and Plutarch and Appian make a similar statement of the time. (Plutarch,
Caesar, chapter 21, and Pompey, chapters 51, 52. Appian, Civil War, II,

[Footnote 55: The two kinds of naval tactics mentioned here (Greek:
periplous] and [Greek: diechplous]) consist respectively (1) in
describing a semi-circle and making a broadside attack with the purpose
of ramming an opposing vessel, and (2) in dashing through the hostile
ranks, breaking the oars of some ship and then returning to ram it when
disabled. Both methods were employed in early Greek as well as in Roman

[Footnote 56: Dio has evidently imitated at this point a sentence in
Herodotos, VIII, 6 (as shown by the phraseology), where it is remarked
that "the Persians [at Artemisium] were minded not to let a single soul"
of the Greeks escape. The expression is, in general, a proverbial one,
applied to utter destruction, especially in warfare. Its source is
Greek, and lies in the custom of the Spartans (see Xenophon, Polity of
the Lacedaemonians, chapter 13, section 2), which required the presence
in their army of a priest carrying fire kindled at the shrine of Zeus
the Leader, in Sparta, this sacred fire being absolutely essential to
the proper conduct of important sacrifices. Victors would naturally
spare such a priest on account of his sacred character; he regularly
possessed the inviolability attaching also to heralds and envoys: and
the proverb that represents him as being slain is (as Suidas notes) an
effective bit of epigrammatic exaggeration. Other references to this
proverb may be found (by those interested) in Rawlinson's note on the
above passage of Herodotos, in one of the scholia on the Phoenician
Maidens of Euripides (verse 1377), in Sturz's Xenophontean Lexicon, in
Stobaios's _Florilegium_ (XLIV, 41, excerpt from Nicolaos in
Damascenos), in Zenobios's _Centuria_ (V, 34), and finally in the
dictionaries of Suidas and Hesychios.

The following slight variations as to the origin of the phrase are to be
found in the above. The scholiast on Euripides states that in early
times before the trumpet was invented, it was customary for a
torch-bearer to perform the duties of a trumpeter. Each of any two
opposing armies would have one, and the two priests advancing in front
of their respective armies would cast their torches into the intervening
space and then be allowed to retire unmolested before the clash
occurred. Zenobios, a gatherer of proverbs, uses the word "seer" instead
of priest. That the saying was an extremely common one seems to be
indicated by the rather naive definition of Hesychios: _Fire-Bearer._ The
man bearing fire. Also, the only man saved in war.

Of course, this may be simply the unskillful condensation of an

[Footnote 57: Reading [Greek: autas] (as Boissevain) in preference to
[Greek: autous] ("upon them").]

[Footnote 58: About sixty miles. It is interesting to compare here
Caesar's (probably less accurate) estimate of _thirty_ miles in his
Gallic War (V, 2, 3).]

[Footnote 59: The exact time, daybreak, is indicated in Caesar's Gallic
War, V, 31, 6.]

[Footnote 60: Compare Caesar's Gallic War, V, 54, 1.]

[Footnote 61: cp. LXXX, 3.]

[Footnote 62: Verb supplied by Reiske.]

[Footnote 63: "Zeugma" signifies a "fastening together" (of boats or
other material) to make a bridge.]

[Footnote 64: A gap here is filled by following approximately Bekker's

[Footnote 65: Verb supplied by Oddey.]

[Footnote 66: Twenty days according to Caesar's Gallic War (VII, 90).
Reimar thinks "sixty" an error of the copyists.]

[Footnote 67: The Words "of Marcus" were added by Leunclavius to make
the statement of the sentence correspond with fact. Their omission would
seem to be obviously due to haplography. The confusion about the
relationship which might well have arisen by Dio's time, is very
possibly the consequence of the idiomatic Latin "frater patruelis" used
by Suetonius (for instance) in chapter 29 of his Life of Caesar. The two
men were in fact, first cousins. Again in Appian (Civil Wars, Book Two,
chapter 26), we read of "Claudius Marcellus, cousin of the previous
Marcus." Both had the gentile name Claudius, one being Marcus Claudius,
and the other Gaius Claudius, Marcellus.]

[Footnote 68: Small gaps occur in this sentence, filled by conjectures
of Bekker and Reiske.]

[Footnote 69: Verb suggested by Xylander, Reiske, Bekker.]

[Footnote 70: Compare Book Thirty-seven, chapter 52.]

[Footnote 71: I.e., "Temple" or "Place of the Nymphs."]

[Footnote 72: This couplet is from an unknown play of Sophocles,
according to both Plutarch and Appian. Plutarch, in his extant works,
cites it three times (Life of Pompey, chapter 78; Sayings of Kings and
Emperors, p. 204E; How a Young Man Ought to Hear Poems, chapter 12). In
the last of these passages he tells how Zeno by a slight change in the
words alters the lines to an opposite meaning which better expresses his
own sentiments. Diogenes Laertius (II, 8) relates a similar incident.
Plutarch says that Pompey quoted the verses in speaking to his wife and
son, but Appian (Civil Wars, H, 85) that he repeated to himself.

The verses will be found as No. 789 of the Incertarum Fabularum
Fragmenta in Nauck's _Tragici Graeci._]

[Footnote 73: _M. Acilius Caninus._]

[Footnote 74: In the MS, some corruption has jumbled these names
together. The correct interpretation was furnished by Xylander and

[Footnote 75: The year 47, in which Caesar came to Rome, is here meant,
or else Dio has made an error.]

[Footnote 76: _M. Caelius Rufus_.]

[Footnote 77: This is one of some twenty different phases (listed in
Wissowa, _Religion und Kultus der Roemer_, p. 212) under which the
goddess was worshipped. (See also Roscher 1, col. 1513.) The appropriate
Latin title was _Fortuna Respiciens_, and it certainly had a Greek
equivalent ([Greek: Tuoae hepistrephomenae] in Plutarch, _de fortuna
Romanorum_, c. 10) which it seems strange that Dio should not have
known. Moreover, our historian has apparently given a wrong
interpretation of the name, since _respicio_ in Latin, when used of the
gods, commonly means to "look favorably upon." In Plautus's _Captivi_
(verse 834) there is a play on the word _respice_ involving the goddess,
and in his _Asinaria_ (verse 716) mention is made of a closely related
divinity, Fortuna Obsequens. Cicero (_de legibus_, II, 11, 28), in
enumerating the divinities that merit human worship, includes "Fortuna,
quae est vel Huius diei--nam valet in omnis dies--vel Respiciens ad opem
ferendam, vel Fors, in quo incerti casus significantur magis" ... The
name Fortuna Respiciens has also come to light in at least three

[Footnote 78: This is the phrase commonly supplied to explain a palpable
corruption in the MS.]

[Footnote 79: It seems probable that a few words have fallen out of the
original narrative at this point. Such is the opinion of both Dindorf
and Hoelzl.]

[Footnote 80: Compare Book Thirty-six, chapters 12 and 13.]

[Footnote 81: _I.e._, "Citizens."]

[Footnote 82: Xylander and Leunclavius supply this necessary word
lacking in the MS.]

[Footnote 83: Compare Plutarch, Life of Caesar, chapter 52, and
Suetonius, Life of Caesar, chapter 59.]

[Footnote 84: Better known as the _Phaedo._]

[Footnote 85: The Greek word representing "for a second time" is not in
the MS., but is supplied with the best of reason by Schenkl and also
Cobet (see Mnemosyne N.S.X., p. 196). It was Caesar's regular custom to
spare any who were taken captive for the first time, but invariably to
put them to death if they were again caught opposing him in arms.
References in Dio are numerous: Compare Book 41, chapter 62; Book 43,
chapter 17; Book 44, chapter 45; Book 44, chapter 46. The same rule for
the treatment of captives finds mention also in the Life of Caesar by
Suetonius, chapter 75.]

[Footnote 86: The last three words of this sentence are not found in the
MS., but as a correlative clause of contrast is evidently needed to
complete the sense, this, or something similar, is supplied by most

[Footnote 87: Reading [Greek: sunaeranto] with Bekker and Reiske in
place of [Greek: prosaeranto].]

[Footnote 88: These blatherskite jests formed a part of the ritual of
the triumph, for the purpose of averting the possible jealousy of
Heaven. Compare, in general, the interesting description of a triumph
given in Fragment 23 (volume VI).]

[Footnote 89: Reading [Greek: haetiazeto] (Cobet's preference).]

[Footnote 90: Caesar's conduct during his stay with Nicomedes (with
embellishments) was thrown in his teeth repeatedly during his career.
According to Suetonius (Life of Caesar, chapter 49) the soldiers sang
scurrilous verses, as follows:

Gallias Caesar subegit, Nicomedes Caesarem. Ecce Caesar nunc triumphat qui
subegit Gallias, Nicomedes non triumphat qui subegit Caesarem.

Dio undoubtedly had these verses before him, in either Suetonius or some
other work, but seems to have been too slow-witted to appreciate the
_double entendre_ in _subegit_, which may signify voluptuary as well as
military prowess. Hence, though he might have turned the expression
exactly by [Greek: hupaegageto] he contented himself with the prosaic
[Greek: hedoulosato]]

[Footnote 91: This remark (as Cobet pointed out) is evidently a
perversion of an old nursery jingle (nenia):

_Si male faxis vapulabis, si bene faxis rex eris._

And another form of it is found in Horace, Epistles (I, 1, 59-60):

_at pueri ludentes 'rex eris' aiunt 'si recte fades.'_

The soldiers simply changed the position of male and bene in the line
above cited.]

[Footnote 92: Possibly, Boissevain thinks, this is a corruption for the
Furius Leptinus mentioned by Suetonius, Life of Caesar, chapter 39.]

[Footnote 93: At present seven scattered months have thirty-one days.
Caesar, when he took the Alexandrian month of thirty days as his
standard, found the same discrepancy of five days as did the Egyptians.
Besides these he lopped two more days off one particular month, then
spread his remainder of seven through the year.]

[Footnote 94: I follow in this sentence the reading of all the older
texts as well as Boissevain's. Only Dindorf and Melber omit [Greek: chai
tetrachosiois], making the number of years 1061. The usual figuring,
1461, has pertinence: the number is just four times 365-1/4 and was
recognized as an Egyptian year-cycle.

As to the facts, however, Sturz points out (note 139 to Book 43) that
after the elapse of fourteen hundred and sixty-one years eleven days
must be subtracted instead of one day added. Pope Gregory XIII
ascertained this when in A.D. 1582 he summoned Aloysius and Antonius
Lilius to advise him in regard to the calendar. (Boissee also refers
here to Ideler, _Manuel de Chronologie_, II, 119ff.)]

[Footnote 95: The name of these islands is spelled both _Gymnasioe and
Gymnesioe_, and they are also called _Baleares_ and _Pityusoe_. Cp. the
end of IX, 10, in the transcript of Zonaras (Volume I).]

[Footnote 96: This is of course New Carthage (Karthago Nova), the
Spanish colony of the African city.]

[Footnote 97: At the close of this chapter there are undoubtedly certain
gaps in the MS., as Dindorf discerned. In the Tauchnitz stereotyped
edition, which usually insists upon wresting some sense from such
passages either by conjecture or by emendation, the following sentence
appears: "But Pompey made light of these supernatural effects, and the
war shrank to the compass of a battle." Boissevain (with a suggestion by
Kuiper) reads: [Greek: all haege gar to daimonion hen te oligoria auto
hepoihaesato chai es polin Moundan pros machaen dae chatestae]. This
would mean: "But Heaven, which he had slighted, led his steps, and he
took up his quarters in a city called Munda preparatory to battle."]

[Footnote 98: Mommsen in his Roman History (third German edition, p.
627, note 1), remarks that Dio must have confused the son of Bocchus
with the son of Massinissa, Arabio, who certainly did align himself with
the Pompeian party (Appian, Civil Wars, IV, 54). All other evidence,
outside of this one passage, shows the two kings to have been
steadfastly loyal to Caesar, behavior which brought them tangible profit
in the shape of enlargement of their domains.]

[Footnote 99: I.e., they were in arms against Caesar a second time.
Compare the note on chapter 12.]

[Footnote 100: This name is spelled _Coesonius_ in Florus's Epitome of
Livy's Thirteenth Book (=Florus II, 13, 86) and also in Orosius's
Narratives for the Discomfiture of Pagans (VI, 16, 9), but appears with
the same form as here in Cicero's Philippics, XII, 9, 23.]

[Footnote 101: The MS. has only "Fabius and Quintus." Mommsen supplies
their entire names from chapter 31 of this book.]

[Footnote 102: This was originally a festival of Pales-Palatua, and
information regarding its introduction is intercepted by remote
antiquity. In historical times we find it celebrated as the
commemoration of the founding of Rome, because Pales-Palatua was a
divinity closely connected with the Palatine, where the city first
stood. From Hadrian's time on special brilliance attached to the
occasion, and it was dignified by the epithet "Roman" (Athenaeus). As
late as the fifth century it was still known as "the birthday of the
city of Rome." Both forms, _Parilia_ and _Palilia_ occur. (Mentioned
also in Book Forty-five, chapter 6.)]

[Footnote 103: Licentiousness and general laxity of morals.]

[Footnote 104: The last clause of this chapter as it appears in the MS.
is evidently corrupt. The reading adopted is that of Madvig, modified by

[Footnote 105: Verb supplied (to fill MS gap) by R. Stephanus and

[Footnote 106: _L. Minucius Basilus._]

[Footnote 107: Reading, with Boissevain, [Greek: antecharteraese].]

[Footnote 108: A gap in the MS.--Verb conjectured by Bekker on the
analogy of a passage in chapter 53.]

[Footnote 109: The father of Pompey the Great.]

[Footnote 110: In other words, the _Lupercalia_. The two other colleges
of Lupercales to which allusion is made were known as the Quintilian and
the Fabian.]

[Footnote 111: Compare Suetonius (Life of Caesar), chapter 52.]

[Footnote 112: It is here, with this word, that one of the two most
important manuscripts of Dio (the codex Venetus or Marcianus 395)

[Footnote 113: Most editors have gotten over the difficulty of this
"and" in the MS. by omitting it. Dindorf, however, believed it to
indicate a real gap.]

[Footnote 114: The words in brackets are Reiske's conjecture for filling
the gap in the MS. Other editors use slightly different phraseology of
like purport.]

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