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Plutarch's Lives

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drinking water." Meeting one day Voconius with his three very
ugly daughters, he quoted the verse,

He reared a race without Apollo's leave.

When Marcus Gellius, who was reputed the son of a slave, had
read several letters in the senate with a very shrill, and loud
voice, "Wonder not," said Cicero, "he comes of the criers."
When Faustus Sylla, the son of Sylla the dictator, who had,
during his dictatorship, by public bills proscribed and
condemned so many citizens, had so far wasted his estate, and
got into debt, that he was forced to publish his bills of sale,
Cicero told him that he liked these bills much better than those
of his father. By this habit he made himself odious with many

But Clodius's faction conspired against him upon the following
occasion. Clodius was a member of a noble family, in the flower
of his youth, and of a bold and resolute temper. He, being in
love with Pompeia, Caesar's wife, got privately into his house
in the dress and attire of a music-girl; the women being at that
time offering there the sacrifice which must not be seen by men,
and there was no man present. Clodius, being a youth and
beardless, hoped to get to Pompeia among the women without being
taken notice of. But coming into a great house by night, he
missed his way in the passages, and a servant belonging to
Aurelia, Caesar's mother, spying him wandering up and down,
inquired his name. Thus being necessitated to speak, he told
her he was seeking for one of Pompeia's maids, Abra by name; and
she, perceiving it not to be a woman's voice, shrieked out, and
called in the women; who, shutting the gates, and searching
every place, at length found Clodius hidden in the chamber of
the maid with whom he had come in. This matter being much
talked about, Caesar put away his wife, Pompeia, and Clodius was
prosecuted for profaning the holy rites.

Cicero was at this time his friend, for he had been useful
to him in the conspiracy of Catiline, as one of his forwardest
assistants and protectors. But when Clodius rested his defense
upon this point, that he was not then at Rome, but at a distance
in the country, Cicero testified that he had come to his house
that day, and conversed with him on several matters; which thing
was indeed true, although Cicero was thought to testify it not
so much for the truth's sake as to preserve his quiet with
Terentia his wife. For she bore a grudge against Clodius on
account of his sister Clodia's wishing, as it was alleged, to
marry Cicero, and having employed for this purpose the
intervention of Tullus, a very intimate friend of Cicero's; and
his frequent visits to Clodia, who lived in their neighborhood,
and the attentions he paid to her had excited Terentia's
suspicions, and, being a woman of a violent temper, and having
the ascendant over Cicero, she urged him on to taking a part
against Clodius, and delivering his testimony. Many other good
and honest citizens also gave evidence against him, for
perjuries, disorders, bribing the people, and debauching women.
Lucullus proved, by his women-servants, that he had debauched
his youngest sister when she was Lucullus's wife; and there was
a general belief that he had done the same with his two other
sisters, Tertia, whom Marcius Rex, and Clodia, whom Metellus
Celer had married; the latter of whom was called Quadrantia,
because one of her lovers had deceived her with a purse of small
copper money instead of silver, the smallest copper coin being
called a quadrant. Upon this sister's account, in particular,
Clodius's character was attacked. Notwithstanding all this,
when the common people united against the accusers and witnesses
and the whole party, the judges were affrighted, and a guard was
placed about them for their defense; and most of them wrote
their sentences on the tablets in such a way, that they could
not well be read. It was decided, however, that there was a
majority for his acquittal, and bribery was reported to have
been employed; in reference to which Catulus remarked, when he
next met the judges, "You were very right to ask for a guard, to
prevent your money being taken from you." And when Clodius
upbraided Cicero that the judges had not believed his testimony,
"Yes," said he, "five and twenty of them trusted me, and
condemned you, and the other thirty did not trust you, for they
did not acquit you till they had got your money."

Caesar, though cited, did not give his testimony against
Clodius, and declared himself not convinced of his wife's
adultery, but that he had put her away because it was fit that
Caesar's house should not be only free of the evil fact, but of
the fame too.

Clodius, having escaped this danger, and having got himself
chosen one of the tribunes, immediately attacked Cicero, heaping
up all matters and inciting all persons against him. The common
people he gained over with popular laws; to each of the consuls
he decreed large provinces, to Piso, Macedonia, and to Gabinius,
Syria; he made a strong party among the indigent citizens, to
support him in his proceedings, and had always a body of armed
slaves about him. Of the three men then in greatest power,
Crassus was Cicero's open enemy, Pompey indifferently made
advances to both, and Caesar was going with an army into Gaul.
To him, though not his friend (what had occurred in the time of
the conspiracy having created suspicions between them), Cicero
applied, requesting an appointment as one of his lieutenants in
the province. Caesar accepted him, and Clodius, perceiving that
Cicero would thus escape his tribunician authority, professed to
be inclinable to a reconciliation, laid the greatest fault upon
Terentia, made always a favorable mention of him, and addressed
him with kind expressions, as one who felt no hatred or
ill-will, but who merely wished to urge his complaints in a
moderate and friendly way. By these artifices, he so freed
Cicero of all his fears, that he resigned his appointment to
Caesar, and betook himself again to political affairs. At which
Caesar being exasperated, joined the party of Clodius against
him, and wholly alienated Pompey from him; he also himself
declared in a public assembly of the people, that he did not
think Lentulus and Cethegus, with their accomplices, were fairly
and legally put to death without being brought to trial. And
this, indeed, was the crime charged upon Cicero, and this
impeachment he was summoned to answer. And so, as an accused
man, and in danger for the result, he changes his dress, and
went round with his hair untrimmed, in the attire of a
suppliant, to beg the people's grace. But Clodius met him in
every corner, having a band of abusive and daring fellows about
him, who derided Cicero for his change of dress and his
humiliation, and often, by throwing dirt and stones at him,
interrupted his supplication to the people.

However, first of all, almost the whole equestrian order changed
their dress with him, and no less than twenty thousand young
gentlemen followed him with their hair untrimmed, and
supplicating with him to the people. And then the senate met,
to pass a decree that the people should change their dress as in
time of public sorrow. But the consuls opposing it, and Clodius
with armed men besetting the senate-house, many of the senators
ran out, crying out and tearing their clothes. But this sight
moved neither shame nor pity; Cicero must either fly or
determine it by the sword with Clodius. He entreated Pompey to
aid him, who was on purpose gone out of the way, and was staying
at his country-house in the Alban hills; and first he sent his
son-in-law Piso to intercede with him, and afterwards set out to
go himself. Of which Pompey being informed, would not stay to
see him, being ashamed at the remembrance of the many conflicts
in the commonwealth which Cicero had undergone in his behalf,
and how much of his policy he had directed for his advantage.
But being now Caesar's son-in-law, at his instance he had set
aside all former kindness, and, slipping out at another door,
avoided the interview. Thus being forsaken by Pompey, and left
alone to himself, he fled to the consuls. Gabinius was rough
with him, as usual, but Piso spoke more courteously, desiring
him to yield and give place for a while to the fury of Clodius,
and to await a change of times, and to be now, as before, his
country's savior from the peril of these troubles and commotions
which Clodius was exciting.

Cicero, receiving this answer, consulted with his friends.
Lucullus advised him to stay, as being sure to prevail at last;
others to fly, because the people would soon desire him again,
when they should have enough of the rage and madness of Clodius.
This last Cicero approved. But first he took a statue of
Minerva, which had been long set up and greatly honored in his
house, and carrying it to the capitol, there dedicated it, with
the inscription, "To Minerva, Patroness of Rome." And receiving
an escort from his friends, about the middle of the night he
left the city, and went by land through Lucania, intending to
reach Sicily.

But as soon as it was publicly known that he was fled, Clodius
proposed to the people a decree of exile, and by his own order
interdicted him fire and water, prohibiting any within five
hundred miles in Italy to receive him into their houses. Most
people, out of respect for Cicero, paid no regard to this edict,
offering him every attention and escorting him on his way. But
at Hipponium, a city of Lucania, now called Vibo, one Vibius, a
Sicilian by birth, who, amongst many other instances of Cicero's
friendship, had been made head of the state engineers when he
was consul, would not receive him into his house, sending him
word he would appoint a place in the country for his reception.
Caius Vergilius, the praetor of Sicily, who had been on the most
intimate terms with him, wrote to him to forbear coming into
Sicily. At these things Cicero being disheartened, went to
Brundusium, whence putting forth with a prosperous wind, a
contrary gale blowing from the sea carried him back to Italy-
the next day. He put again to sea, and having reached
Dyrrachium, on his coming to shore there, it is reported that an
earthquake and a convulsion in the sea happened at the same
time, signs which the diviners said intimated that his exile
would not be long, for these were prognostics of change.
Although many visited him with respect, and the cities of Greece
contended which should honor him most, he yet continued
disheartened and disconsolate, like an unfortunate lover, often
casting his looks back upon Italy; and, indeed, he was become so
poor-spirited, so humiliated and dejected by his misfortunes,
as none could have expected in a man who had devoted so much of
his life to study and learning. And yet he often desired his
friends not to call him orator, but philosopher, because he had
made philosophy his business, and had only used rhetoric as an
instrument for attaining his objects in public life. But the
desire of glory has great power in washing the tinctures of
philosophy out of the souls of men, and in imprinting the
passions of the common people, by custom and conversation, in
the minds of those that take a part in governing them, unless
the politician be very careful so to engage in public affairs as
to interest himself only in the affairs themselves, but not
participate in the passions that are consequent to them.

Clodius, having thus driven away Cicero, fell to burning his
farms and villas, and afterwards his city house, and built on
the site of it a temple to Liberty. The rest of his property he
exposed to sale by daily proclamation, but nobody came to buy.
By these courses he became formidable to the noble citizens,
and, being followed by the commonalty, whom he had filled with
insolence and licentiousness, he began at last to try his
strength against Pompey, some of whose arrangements in the
countries he conquered, he attacked. The disgrace of this made
Pompey begin to reproach himself for his cowardice in deserting
Cicero, and, changing his mind, he now wholly set himself with
his friends to contrive his return. And when Clodius opposed
it, the senate made a vote that no public measure should be
ratified or passed by them till Cicero was recalled. But when
Lentulus was consul, the commotions grew so high upon this
matter, that the tribunes were wounded in the Forum, and
Quintus, Cicero's brother, was left as dead, lying unobserved
amongst the slain. The people began to change in their
feelings; and Annius Milo, one of their tribunes, was the first
who took confidence to summon Clodius to trial for acts of
violence. Many of the common people and out of the neighboring
cities formed a party with Pompey, and he went with them, and
drove Clodius out of the Forum, and summoned the people to pass
their vote. And, it is said, the people never passed any
suffrage more unanimously than this. The senate, also, striving
to outdo the people, sent letters of thanks to those cities
which had received Cicero with respect in his exile, and decreed
that his house and his country-places, which Clodius had
destroyed, should be rebuilt at the public charge.

Thus Cicero returned sixteen months after his exile, and the
cities were so glad, and people so zealous to meet him, that
what he boasted of afterwards, that Italy had brought him on her
shoulders home to Rome, was rather less than the truth. And
Crassus himself, who had been his enemy before his exile, went
then voluntarily to meet him, and was reconciled, to please his
son Publius, as he said, who was Cicero's affectionate admirer.

Cicero had not been long at Rome, when, taking the opportunity
of Clodius's absence, he went, with a great company, to the
capitol, and there tore and defaced the tribunician tables, in
which were recorded the acts done in the time of Clodius. And
on Clodius calling him in question for this, he answered, that
he, being of the patrician order, had obtained the office of
tribune against law, and, therefore, nothing done by him was
valid. Cato was displeased at this, and opposed Cicero, not
that he commended Clodius, but rather disapproved of his whole
administration; yet, he contended, it was an irregular and
violent course for the senate to vote the illegality of so many
decrees and acts, including those of Cato's own government in
Cyprus and at Byzantium. This occasioned a breach between Cato
and Cicero, which, though it came not to open enmity, yet made a
more reserved friendship between them.

After this, Milo killed Clodius, and, being arraigned for the
murder, he procured Cicero as his advocate. The senate, fearing
lest the questioning of so eminent and high-spirited a citizen
as Milo might disturb the peace of the city, committed the
superintendence of this and of the other trials to Pompey, who
should undertake to maintain the security alike of the city and
of the courts of justice. Pompey, therefore, went in the night,
and occupying the high grounds about it, surrounded the Forum
with soldiers. Milo, fearing lest Cicero, being disturbed by
such an unusual sight, should conduct his cause the less
successfully, persuaded him to come in a litter into the Forum,
and there repose himself till the judges were set, and the court
filled. For Cicero, it seems, not only wanted courage in arms,
but, in his speaking also, began with timidity, and in many
cases scarcely left off trembling and shaking when he had got
thoroughly into the current and the substance of his speech.
Being to defend Licinius Murena against the prosecution of Cato,
and being eager to outdo Hortensius, who had made his plea with
great applause, he took so little rest that night, and was so
disordered with thought and over-watching, that he spoke much
worse than usual. And so now, on quitting his litter to
commence the cause of Milo, at the sight of Pompey, posted, as
it were, and encamped with his troops above, and seeing arms
shining round about the Forum, he was so confounded, that he
could hardly begin his speech, for the trembling of his body,
and hesitance of his tongue; whereas Milo, meantime, was bold
and intrepid in his demeanor, disdaining either to let his hair
grow, or to put on the mourning habit. And this, indeed, seems
to have been one principal cause of his condemnation. Cicero,
however, was thought not so much to have shown timidity for
himself, as anxiety about his friend.

He was made one of the priests, whom the Romans call Augurs, in
the room of Crassus the younger, dead in Parthia. Then he was
appointed, by lot, to the province of Cilicia, and set sail
thither with twelve thousand foot and two thousand six hundred
horse. He had orders to bring back Cappadocia to its allegiance
to Ariobarzanes, its king; which settlement he effected very
completely without recourse to arms. And perceiving the
Cilicians, by the great loss the Romans had suffered in Parthia,
and the commotions in Syria, to have become disposed to attempt
a revolt, by a gentle course of government he soothed them back
into fidelity. He would accept none of the presents that were
offered him by the kings; he remitted the charge of public
entertainments, but daily, at his own house, received the
ingenious and accomplished persons of the province, not
sumptuously, but liberally. His house had no porter, nor was he
ever found in bed by any man, but early in the morning, standing
or walking before his door, he received those who came to offer
their salutations. He is said never once to have ordered any of
those under his command to be beaten with rods, or to have their
garments rent. He never gave contumelious language in his
anger, nor inflicted punishment with reproach. He detected an
embezzlement, to a large amount, in the public money, and thus
relieved the cities from their burdens, at the same time that he
allowed those who made restitution, to retain without further
punishment their rights as citizens. He engaged too, in war, so
far as to give a defeat to the banditti who infested Mount
Amanus, for which he was saluted by his army Imperator. To
Caecilius, the orator, who asked him to send him some panthers
from Cilicia, to be exhibited on the theater at Rome, he wrote,
in commendation of his own actions, that there were no panthers
in Cilicia, for they were all fled to Caria, in anger that in so
general a peace they had become the sole objects of attack. On
leaving his province, he touched at Rhodes, and tarried for some
length of time at Athens, longing much to renew his old studies.
He visited the eminent men of learning, and saw his former
friends and companions; and after receiving in Greece the honors
that were due to him, returned to the city, where everything
was now just as it were in a flame, breaking out into a civil

When the senate would have decreed him a triumph, he told them
he had rather, so differences were accommodated, follow the
triumphal chariot of Caesar. In private, he gave advice to
both, writing many letters to Caesar, and personally entreating
Pompey; doing his best to soothe and bring to reason both the
one and the other. But when matters became incurable, and
Caesar was approaching Rome, and Pompey durst not abide it, but,
with many honest citizens, left the city, Cicero, as yet, did
not join in the flight, and was reputed to adhere to Caesar.
And it is very evident he was in his thoughts much divided, and
wavered painfully between both, for he writes in his epistles,
"To which side should I turn? Pompey has the fair and honorable
plea for war; and Caesar, on the other hand, has managed his
affairs better, and is more able to secure himself and his
friends. So that I know whom I should fly, not whom I should
fly to." But when Trebatius, one of Caesar's friends, by letter
signified to him that Caesar thought it was his most desirable
course to join his party, and partake his hopes, but if he
considered himself too old a man for this, then he should retire
into Greece, and stay quietly there, out of the way of either
party, Cicero, wondering that Caesar had not written himself,
gave an angry reply, that he should not do anything unbecoming
his past life. Such is the account to be collected from his

But as soon as Caesar was marched into Spain, he immediately
sailed away to join Pompey. And he was welcomed by all but
Cato; who, taking him privately, chid him for coming to Pompey.
As for himself, he said, it had been indecent to forsake that
part in the commonwealth which he had chosen from the beginning;
but Cicero might have been more useful to his country and
friends, if, remaining neuter, he had attended and used his
influence to moderate the result, instead of coming hither to
make himself, without reason or necessity, an enemy to Caesar,
and a partner in such great dangers. By this language, partly,
Cicero's feelings were altered, and partly, also, because Pompey
made no great use of him. Although, indeed, he was himself the
cause of it, by his not denying that he was sorry he had come,
by his depreciating Pompey's resources, finding fault underhand
with his counsels, and continually indulging in jests and
sarcastic remarks on his fellow-soldiers. Though he went about
in the camp with a gloomy and melancholy face himself, he was
always trying to raise a laugh in others, whether they wished it
or not. It may not be amiss to mention a few instances. To
Domitius, on his preferring to a command one who was no soldier,
and saying, in his defense, that he was a modest and prudent
person, he replied, "Why did not you keep him for a tutor for
your children?" On hearing Theophanes, the Lesbian, who was
master of the engineers in the army, praised for the admirable
way in which he had consoled the Rhodians for the loss of their
fleet, "What a thing it is," he said, "to have a Greek in
command!" When Caesar had been acting successfully, and in a
manner blockading Pompey, Lentulus was saying it was reported
that Caesar's friends were out of heart; "Because," said Cicero,
"they do not wish Caesar well." To one Marcius, who had just
come from Italy, and told them that there was a strong report at
Rome that Pompey was blocked up, he said, "And you sailed hither
to see it with your own eyes." To Nonius, encouraging them
after a defeat to be of good hope, because there were seven
eagles still left in Pompey's camp, "Good reason for
encouragement," said Cicero, "if we were going to fight with
jack-daws." Labienus insisted on some prophecies to the effect
that Pompey would gain the victory; "Yes," said Cicero, "and the
first step in the campaign has been losing our camp."

After the battle of Pharsalia was over, at which he was not
present for want of health, and Pompey was fled, Cato, having
considerable forces and a great fleet at Dyrrachium, would have
had Cicero commander-in-chief, according to law, and the
precedence of his consular dignity. And on his refusing the
command, and wholly declining to take part in their plans for
continuing the war, he was in the greatest danger of being
killed, young Pompey and his friends calling him traitor, and
drawing their swords upon him; only that Cato interposed, and
hardly rescued and brought him out of the camp.

Afterwards, arriving at Brundusium, he tarried there sometime in
expectation of Caesar, who was delayed by his affairs in Asia
and Egypt. And when it was told him that he was arrived at
Tarentum, and was coming thence by land to Brundusium, he
hastened towards him, not altogether without hope, and yet in
some fear of making experiment of the temper of an enemy and
conqueror in the presence of many witnesses. But there was no
necessity for him either to speak or do anything unworthy of
himself; for Caesar, as soon as he saw him coming a good way
before the rest of the company, came down to meet him, saluted
him, and, leading the way, conversed with him alone for some
furlongs. And from that time forward he continued to treat him
with honor and respect; so that, when Cicero wrote an oration in
praise of Cato, Caesar, in writing an answer to it, took
occasion to commend Cicero's own life and eloquence, comparing
him to Pericles and Theramenes. Cicero's oration was called
Cato; Caesar's, anti-Cato.

So also, it is related that when Quintus Ligarius was prosecuted
for having been in arms against Caesar, and Cicero had
undertaken his defense, Caesar said to his friends, "Why might
we not as well once more hear a speech from Cicero? Ligarius,
there is no question, is a wicked man and an enemy." But when
Cicero began to speak, he wonderfully moved him, and proceeded
in his speech with such varied pathos, and such a charm of
language, that the color of Caesar's countenance often changed,
and it was evident that all the passions of his soul were in
commotion. At length, the orator touching upon the Pharsalian
battle, he was so affected that his body trembled, and some of
the papers he held dropped out of his hands. And thus he was
overpowered, and acquitted Ligarius.

Henceforth, the commonwealth being changed into a monarchy,
Cicero withdrew himself from public affairs, and employed his
leisure in instructing those young men that would, in
philosophy; and by the near intercourse he thus had with some of
the noblest and highest in rank, he again began to possess great
influence in the city. The work and object which he set himself
was to compose and translate philosophical dialogues and to
render logical and physical terms into the Roman idiom. For he
it was, as it is said, who first or principally gave Latin names
to phantasia, syncatathesis, epokhe, catalepsis, atomon,
ameres, kenon, and other such technical terms, which, either by
metaphors or other means of accommodation, he succeeded in
making intelligible and expressible to the Romans. For his
recreation, he exercised his dexterity in poetry, and when he
was set to it, would make five hundred verses in a night. He
spent the greatest part of his time at his country-house near
Tusculum. He wrote to his friends that he led the life of
Laertes, either jestingly, as his custom was, or rather from a
feeling of ambition for public employment, which made him
impatient under the present state of affairs. He rarely went to
the city, unless to pay his court to Caesar. He was commonly
the first amongst those who voted him honors, and sought out new
terms of praise for himself and for his actions. As, for
example, what he said of the statues of Pompey, which had been
thrown down, and were afterwards by Caesar's orders set up
again: that Caesar, by this act of humanity, had indeed set up
Pompey's statues, but he had fixed and established his own.

He had a design, it is said, of writing the history of his
country, combining with it much of that of Greece, and
incorporating in it all the stories and legends of the past that
he had collected. But his purposes were interfered with by
various public and various private unhappy occurrences and
misfortunes; for most of which he was himself in fault. For
first of all, he put away his wife Terentia, by whom he had been
neglected in the time of the war, and sent away destitute of
necessaries for his journey; neither did he find her kind when
he returned into Italy, for she did not join him at Brundusium,
where he stayed a long time, nor would allow her young daughter,
who undertook so long a journey, decent attendance, or the
requisite expenses; besides, she left him a naked and empty
house, and yet had involved him in many and great debts. These
were alleged as the fairest reasons for the divorce. But
Terentia, who denied them all, had the most unmistakable defense
furnished her by her husband himself, who not long after married
a young maiden for the love of her beauty, as Terentia upbraided
him; or as Tiro, his emancipated slave, has written, for her
riches, to discharge his debts. For the young woman was very
rich, and Cicero had the custody of her estate, being left
guardian in trust; and being indebted many myriads of money, he
was persuaded by his friends and relations to marry her,
notwithstanding his disparity of age, and to use her money to
satisfy his creditors. Antony, who mentions this marriage in
his answer to the Philippics, reproaches him for putting away a
wife with whom he had lived to old age; adding some happy
strokes of sarcasm on Cicero's domestic, inactive,
unsoldier-like habits. Not long after this marriage, his
daughter died in child-bed at Lentulus's house, to whom she had
been married after the death of Piso, her former husband. The
philosophers from all parts came to comfort Cicero; for his
grief was so excessive, that he put away his new-married wife,
because she seemed to be pleased at the death of Tullia. And
thus stood Cicero's domestic affairs at this time.

He had no concern in the design that was now forming against
Caesar, although, in general, he was Brutus's most principal
confidant, and one who was as aggrieved at the present, and as
desirous of the former state of public affairs, as any other
whatsoever. But they feared his temper, as wanting courage, and
his old age, in which the most daring dispositions are apt to
be timorous.

As soon, therefore, as the act was committed by Brutus and
Cassius, and the friends of Caesar were got together, so that
there was fear the city would again be involved in a civil war,
Antony, being consul, convened the senate, and made a short
address recommending concord. And Cicero, following with
various remarks such as the occasion called for, persuaded the
senate to imitate the Athenians, and decree an amnesty for what
had been done in Caesar's case, and to bestow provinces on
Brutus and Cassius. But neither of these things took effect. For
as soon as the common people, of themselves inclined to pity,
saw the dead body of Caesar borne through the marketplace, and
Antony showing his clothes filled with blood, and pierced
through in every part with swords, enraged to a degree of
frenzy, they made a search for the murderers, and with
firebrands in their hands ran to their houses to burn them.
They, however, being forewarned, avoided this danger; and
expecting many more and greater to come, they left the city.

Antony on this was at once in exultation, and everyone was in
alarm with the prospect that he would make himself sole ruler,
and Cicero in more alarm than anyone. For Antony, seeing his
influence reviving in the commonwealth, and knowing how closely
he was connected with Brutus, was ill-pleased to have him in the
city. Besides, there had been some former jealousy between
them, occasioned by the difference of their manners. Cicero,
fearing the event, was inclined to go as lieutenant with
Dolabella into Syria. But Hirtius and Pansa, consuls elect as
successors of Antony, good men and lovers of Cicero, entreated
him not to leave them, undertaking to put down Antony if he
would stay in Rome. And he, neither distrusting wholly, nor
trusting them, let Dolabella go without him, promising Hirtius
that he would go and spend his summer at Athens, and return
again when he entered upon his office. So he set out on his
journey; but some delay occurring in his passage, new
intelligence, as often happens, came suddenly from Rome, that
Antony had made an astonishing change, and was doing all things
and managing all public affairs at the will of the senate, and
that there wanted nothing but his presence to bring things to a
happy settlement. And therefore, blaming himself for his
cowardice, he returned again to Rome, and was not deceived in
his hopes at the beginning. For such multitudes flocked out to
meet him, that the compliments and civilities which were paid
him at the gates, and at his entrance into the city, took up
almost one whole day's time.

On the morrow, Antony convened the senate, and summoned Cicero
thither. He came not, but kept is bed, pretending to be ill
with his journey; but the true reason seemed the fear of some
design against him, upon a suspicion and intimation given him on
his way to Rome. Antony, however, showed great offense at the
affront, and sent soldiers, commanding them to bring him or burn
his house; but many interceding and supplicating for him, he was
contented to accept sureties. Ever after, when they met, they
passed one another with silence, and continued on their guard,
till Caesar, the younger, coming from Apollonia, entered on the
first Caesar's inheritance, and was engaged in a dispute with
Antony about two thousand five hundred myriads of money, which
Antony detained from the estate.

Upon this, Philippus, who married the mother, and Marcellus, who
married the sister of young Caesar, came with the young man to
Cicero, and agreed with him that Cicero should give them the aid
of his eloquence and political influence with the senate and
people, and Caesar give Cicero the defense of his riches and
arms. For the young man had already a great party of the
soldiers of Caesar about him. And Cicero's readiness to join
him was founded, it is said, on some yet stronger motives; for
it seems, while Pompey and Caesar were yet alive, Cicero, in his
sleep, had fancied himself engaged in calling some of the sons
of the senators into the capitol, Jupiter being about, according
to the dream, to declare one of them the chief ruler of Rome.
The citizens, running up with curiosity, stood about the temple,
and the youths, sitting in their purple-bordered robes, kept
silence. On a sudden the doors opened, and the youths, arising
one by one in order, passed round the god, who reviewed them all,
and, to their sorrow, dismissed them; but when this one was
passing by, the god stretched forth his right hand and said, "O
ye Romans, this young man, when he shall be lord of Rome, shall
put an end to all your civil wars." It is said that Cicero
formed from his dream a distinct image of the youth, and
retained it afterwards perfectly, but did not know who it was.
The next day, going down into the Campus Martius, he met the
boys resuming from their gymnastic exercises, and the first was
he, just as he had appeared to him in his dream. Being
astonished at it, he asked him who were his parents. And it
proved to be this young Caesar, whose father was a man of no
great eminence, Octavius, and his mother, Attia, Caesar's
sister's daughter; for which reason, Caesar, who had no
children, made him by will the heir of his house and property.
From that time, it is said that Cicero studiously noticed the
youth whenever he met him, and he as kindly received the
civility; and by fortune he happened to be born when Cicero was

These were the reasons spoken of; but it was principally
Cicero's hatred of Antony, and a temper unable to resist honor,
which fastened him to Caesar, with the purpose of getting the
support of Caesar's power for his own public designs. For the
young man went so far in his court to him, that he called him
Father; at which Brutus was so highly displeased, that, in his
epistles to Atticus he reflected on Cicero saying, it was
manifest, by his courting Caesar for fear of Antony, he did not
intend liberty to his country, but an indulgent master to
himself. Notwithstanding, Brutus took Cicero's son, then
studying philosophy at Athens, gave him a command, and employed
him in various ways, with a good result. Cicero's own power at
this time was at the greatest height in the city, and he did
whatsoever he pleased; he completely overpowered and drove out
Antony, and sent the two consuls, Hirtius and Pansa, with an
army, to reduce him; and, on the other hand, persuaded the
senate to allow Caesar the lictors and ensigns of a praetor, as
though he were his country's defender. But after Antony was
defeated in battle, and the two consuls slain, the armies
united, and ranged themselves with Caesar. And the senate,
fearing the young man, and his extraordinary fortune,
endeavored, by honors and gifts, to call off the soldiers from
him, and to lessen his power; professing there was no further
need of arms, now Antony was put to flight.

This giving Caesar an affright, he privately sends some friends
to entreat and persuade Cicero to procure the consular dignity
for them both together; saying he should manage the affairs as
he pleased, should have the supreme power, and govern the young
man who was only desirous of name and glory. And Caesar himself
confessed, that in fear of ruin, and in danger of being
deserted, he had seasonably made use of Cicero's ambition,
persuading him to stand with him, and to accept the offer of his
aid and interest for the consulship.

And now, more than at any other time, Cicero let himself be
carried away and deceived, though an old man, by the persuasions
of a boy. He joined him in soliciting votes, and procured the
good-will of the senate, not without blame at the time on the
part of his friends; and he, too, soon enough after, saw that he
had ruined himself, and betrayed the liberty of his country.
For the young man, once established, and possessed of the office
of consul, bade Cicero farewell; and, reconciling himself to
Antony and Lepidus, joined his power with theirs, and divided
the government, like a piece of property, with them. Thus
united, they made a schedule of above two hundred persons who
were to be put to death. But the greatest contention in all
their debates was on the question of Cicero's case. Antony
would come to no conditions, unless he should be the first man
to be killed. Lepidus held with Antony, and Caesar opposed them
both. They met secretly and by themselves, for three days
together, near the town of Bononia. The spot was not far from
the camp, with a river surrounding it. Caesar, it is said,
contended earnestly for Cicero the first two days; but on the
third day he yielded, and gave him up.

The terms of their mutual concessions were these; that Caesar
should desert Cicero, Lepidus his brother Paulus, and Antony,
Lucius Caesar, his uncle by his mother's side. Thus they let
their anger and fury take from them the sense of humanity, and
demonstrated that no beast is more savage than man, when
possessed with power answerable to his rage.

Whilst these things were contriving, Cicero was with his brother
at his country-house near Tusculum; whence, hearing of the
proscriptions, they determined to pass to Astura, a villa of
Cicero's near the sea, and to take shipping from thence for
Macedonia to Brutus, of whose strength in that province news had
already been heard. They traveled together in their separate
litters, overwhelmed with sorrow; and often stopping on the way
till their litters came together, condoled with one another.
But Quintus was the more disheartened, when he reflected on his
want of means for his journey; for, as he said, he had brought
nothing with him from home. And even Cicero himself had but a
slender provision. It was judged, therefore, most expedient
that Cicero should make what haste he could to fly, and Quintus
return home to provide necessaries, and thus resolved, they
mutually embraced, and parted with many tears.

Quintus, within a few days after, betrayed by his servants to
those who came to search for him, was slain, together with his
young son. But Cicero was carried to Astura, where, finding a
vessel, he immediately went on board her, and sailed as far as
Circaeum with a prosperous gale; but when the pilots resolved
immediately to set sail from thence, whether fearing the sea, or
not wholly distrusting the faith of Caesar, he went on shore,
and passed by land a hundred furlongs, as if he was going for
Rome. But losing resolution and changing his mind, he again
returned to the sea, and there spent the night in fearful and
perplexed thoughts. Sometimes he resolved to go into Caesar's
house privately, and there kill himself upon the altar of his
household gods, to bring divine vengeance upon him; but the fear
of torture put him off this course. And after passing through a
variety of confused and uncertain counsels, at last he let his
servants carry him by sea to Capitae, where he had a house, an
agreeable place to retire to in the heat of summer, when the
Etesian winds are so pleasant.

There was at that place a chapel of Apollo, not far from the
sea-side, from which a flight of crows rose with a great noise,
and made towards Cicero's vessel as it rowed to land, and
lighting on both sides of the yard, some croaked, others pecked
the ends of the ropes. This was looked upon by all as an ill
omen; and, therefore, Cicero went again ashore, and entering his
house, lay down upon his bed to compose himself to rest. Many
of the crows settled about the window, making a dismal cawing;
but one of them alighted upon the bed where Cicero lay covered
up, and with its bill by little and little pecked off the
clothes from his face. His servants, seeing this, blamed
themselves that they should stay to be spectators of their
master's murder, and do nothing in his defense, whilst the brute
creatures came to assist and take care of him in his undeserved
affliction; and, therefore, partly by entreaty, partly by force,
they took him up, and carried him in his litter towards the

But in the meantime the assassins were come with a band of
soldiers, Herennius, a centurion, and Popillius, a tribune, whom
Cicero had formerly defended when prosecuted for the murder of
his father. Finding the doors shut, they broke them open, and
Cicero not appearing and those within saying they knew not
where he was, it is stated that a youth, who had been educated
by Cicero in the liberal arts and sciences, an emancipated slave
of his brother Quintus, Philologus by name, informed the tribune
that the litter was on its way to the sea through the close and
shady walks. The tribune, taking a few with him, ran to the
place where he was to come out. And Cicero, perceiving
Herennius running in the walks, commanded his servants to set
down the litter; and stroking his chin, as he used to do, with
his left hand, he looked steadfastly upon his murderers, his
person covered with dust, his beard and hair untrimmed, and his
face worn with his troubles. So that the greatest part of those
that stood by covered their faces whilst Herennius slew him.
And thus was he murdered, stretching forth his neck out of the
litter, being now in his sixty-fourth year. Herennius cut off
his head, and, by Antony's command, his hands also, by which his
Philippics were written; for so Cicero styled those orations he
wrote against Antony, and so they are called to this day.

When these members of Cicero were brought to Rome, Antony was
holding an assembly for the choice of public officers; and when
he heard it, and saw them, he cried out, "Now let there be an
end of our proscriptions." He commanded his head and hands to
be fastened up over the Rostra, where the orators spoke; a sight
which the Roman people shuddered to behold, and they believed
they saw there not the face of Cicero, but the image of Antony's
own soul. And yet amidst these actions he did justice in one
thing, by delivering up Philologus to Pomponia, the wife of
Quintus; who, having got his body into her power, besides other
grievous punishments, made him cut off his own flesh by pieces,
and roast and eat it; for so some writers have related. But
Tiro, Cicero's emancipated slave, has not so much as mentioned
the treachery of Philologus.

Some long time after, Caesar, I have been told, visiting one of
his daughter's sons, found him with a book of Cicero's in his
hand. The boy for fear endeavored to hide it under his gown;
which Caesar perceiving, took it from him, and turning over a
great part of the book standing, gave it him again, and said,
"My child, this was a learned man, and a lover of his country."
And immediately after he had vanquished Antony, being then
consul, he made Cicero's son his colleague in the office; and
under that consulship, the senate took down all the statues of
Antony, and abolished all the other honors that had been given
him, and decreed that none of that family should thereafter bear
the name of Marcus; and thus the final acts of the punishment of
Antony were, by the divine powers, devolved upon the family of


These are the most memorable circumstances recorded in history
of Demosthenes and Cicero which have come to our knowledge. But
omitting an exact comparison of their respective faculties in
speaking, yet thus much seems fit to be said; that Demosthenes,
to make himself a master in rhetoric, applied all the faculties
he had, natural or acquired, wholly that way; that he far
surpassed in force and strength of eloquence all his
contemporaries in political and judicial speaking, in grandeur
and majesty all the panegyrical orators, and in accuracy and
science all the logicians and rhetoricians of his day; that
Cicero was highly educated, and by his diligent study became a
most accomplished general scholar in all these branches, having
left behind him numerous philosophical treatises of his own on
Academic principles; as, indeed, even in his written speeches,
both political and judicial, we see him continually trying to
show his learning by the way. And one may discover the
different temper of each of them in their speeches. For
Demosthenes's oratory was without all embellishment and jesting,
wholly composed for real effect and seriousness; not smelling of
the lamp, as Pytheas scoffingly said, but of the temperance,
thoughtfulness, austerity, and grave earnestness of his temper.
Whereas Cicero's love of mockery often ran him into scurrility;
and in his love of laughing away serious arguments in judicial
cases by jests and facetious remarks, with a view to the
advantage of his clients, he paid too little regard to what was
decent: saying, for example, in his defense of Caelius, that he
had done no absurd thing in such plenty and affluence to indulge
himself in pleasures, it being a kind of madness not to enjoy
the things we possess, especially since the most eminent
philosophers have asserted pleasure to be the chiefest good. So
also we are told, that when Cicero, being consul, undertook the
defense of Murena against Cato's prosecution, by way of
bantering Cato, he made a long series of jokes upon the absurd
paradoxes, as they are called, of the Stoic sect; so that a loud
laughter passing from the crowd to the judges, Cato, with a
quiet smile, said to those that sat next him, "My friends, what
an amusing consul we have."

And, indeed, Cicero was by natural temper very much disposed to
mirth and pleasantry, and always appeared with a smiling and
serene countenance. But Demosthenes had constant care and
thoughtfulness in his look, and a serious anxiety, which he
seldom, if ever, laid aside; and, therefore, was accounted by
his enemies, as he himself confessed, morose and ill-mannered.

Also, it is very evident, out of their several writings, that
Demosthenes never touched upon his own praises but decently and
without offense when there was need of it, and for some
weightier end; but, upon other occasions modestly and sparingly.
But Cicero's immeasurable boasting of himself in his orations
argues him guilty of an uncontrollable appetite for distinction,
his cry being evermore that arms should give place to the gown,
and the soldier's laurel to the tongue. And at last we find him
extolling not only his deeds and actions, but his orations also,
as well those that were only spoken, as those that were
published; as if he were engaged in a boyish trial of skill, who
should speak best, with the rhetoricians, Isocrates and
Anaximenes, not as one who could claim the task to guide and
instruct the Roman nation, the

Soldier full-armed, terrific to the foe.

It is necessary, indeed, for a political leader to be an able
speaker; but it is an ignoble thing for any man to admire and
relish the glory of his own eloquence. And, in this matter,
Demosthenes had a more than ordinary gravity and magnificence of
mind, accounting his talent in speaking nothing more than a mere
accomplishment and matter of practice, the success of which must
depend greatly on the good-will and candor of his hearers, and
regarding those who pride themselves on such accounts to be men
of a low and petty disposition.

The power of persuading and governing the people did, indeed,
equally belong to both, so that those who had armies and camps
at command stood in need of their assistance; as Chares,
Diopithes, and Leosthenes of Demosthenes's, Pompey and young
Caesar of Cicero's, as the latter himself admits in his Memoirs
addressed to Agrippa and Maecenas. But what are thought and
commonly said most to demonstrate and try the tempers of men,
namely, authority and place, by moving every passion, and
discovering every frailty, these are things which Demosthenes
never received; nor was he ever in a position to give such proof
of himself, having never obtained any eminent office, nor led
any of those armies into the field against Philip which he
raised by his eloquence. Cicero, on the other hand, was sent
quaestor into Sicily, and proconsul into Cilicia and Cappadocia,
at a time when avarice was at the height, and the commanders and
governors who were employed abroad, as though they thought it a
mean thing to steal, set themselves to seize by open force; so
that it seemed no heinous matter to take bribes, but he that did
it most moderately was in good esteem. And yet he, at this
time, gave the most abundant proofs alike of his contempt of
riches and of his humanity and good-nature. And at Rome, when
he was created consul in name, but indeed received sovereign and
dictatorial authority against Catiline and his conspirators, he
attested the truth of Plato's prediction, that then the miseries
of states would be at an end, when by a happy fortune supreme
power, wisdom, and justice should be united in one.

It is said, to the reproach of Demosthenes, that his eloquence
was mercenary; that he privately made orations for Phormion and
Apollodorus, though adversaries in the same cause; that he was
charged with moneys received from the king of Persia, and
condemned for bribes from Harpalus. And should we grant that
all those (and they are not few) who have made these statements
against him have spoken what is untrue, yet that Demosthenes was
not the character to look without desire on the presents offered
him out of respect and gratitude by royal persons, and that one
who lent money on maritime usury was likely to be thus indifferent,
is what we cannot assert. But that Cicero refused, from the
Sicilians when he was quaestor, from the king of Cappadocia when
he was proconsul, and from his friends at Rome when he was in exile,
many presents, though urged to receive them, has been said already.

Moreover, Demosthenes's banishment was infamous, upon conviction
for bribery; Cicero's very honorable, for ridding his country of
a set of villains. Therefore, when Demosthenes fled his
country, no man regarded it; for Cicero's sake the senate
changed their habit, and put on mourning, and would not be
persuaded to make any act before Cicero's return was decreed.
Cicero, however, passed his exile idly in Macedonia. But the
very exile of Demosthenes made up a great part of the services
he did for his country; for he went through the cities of
Greece, and everywhere, as we have said, joined in the conflict
on behalf of the Grecians, driving out the Macedonian
ambassadors, and approving himself a much better citizen than
Themistocles and Alcibiades did in the like fortune. And, after
his return, he again devoted himself to the same public service,
and continued firm to his opposition to Antipater and the
Macedonians. Whereas Laelius reproached Cicero in the senate
for sitting silent when Caesar, a beardless youth, asked leave
to come forward, contrary to the law, as a candidate for the
consulship; and Brutus, in his epistles, charges him with
nursing and rearing a greater and more heavy tyranny than that
they had removed.

Finally, Cicero's death excites our pity; for an old man to be
miserably carried up and down by his servants, flying and hiding
himself from that death which was, in the course of nature, so
near at hand; and yet at last to be murdered. Demosthenes,
though he seemed at first a little to supplicate, yet, by his
preparing and keeping the poison by him, demands our admiration;
and still more admirable was his using it. When the temple of
the god no longer afforded him a sanctuary, he took refuge, as
it were, at a mightier altar, freeing himself from arms and
soldiers, and laughing to scorn the cruelty of Antipater.


Ingenious men have long observed a resemblance between the arts
and the bodily senses. And they were first led to do so, I
think, by noticing the way in which, both in the arts and with
our senses, we examine opposites. Judgment once obtained, the
use to which we put it differs in the two cases. Our senses are
not meant to pick out black rather than white, to prefer sweet
to bitter, or soft and yielding to hard and resisting objects;
all they have to do is to receive impressions as they occur, and
report to the understanding the impressions as received. The
arts, on the other hand, which reason institutes expressly to
choose and obtain some suitable, and to refuse and get rid of
some unsuitable object, have their proper concern in the
consideration of the former; though, in a casual and contingent
way, they must also, for the very rejection of them, pay
attention to the latter. Medicine, to produce health, has to
examine disease, and music, to create harmony, must investigate
discord; and the supreme arts, of temperance, of justice, and of
wisdom, as they are acts of judgment and selection, exercised
not on good and just and expedient only, but also on wicked,
unjust, and inexpedient objects, do not give their commendations
to the mere innocence whose boast is its inexperience of evil,
and whose truer name is, by their award, suppleness and
ignorance of what all men who live aright should know. The
ancient Spartans, at their festivals, used to force their Helots
to swallow large quantities of raw wine, and then to expose them
at the public tables, to let the young men see what it is to be
drunk. And, though I do not think it consistent with humanity
or with civil justice to correct one man's morals by corrupting
those of another, yet we may, I think, avail ourselves of the
cases of those who have fallen into indiscretions, and have, in
high stations, made themselves conspicuous for misconduct; and I
shall not do ill to introduce a pair or two of such examples
among these biographies, not, assuredly, to amuse and divert my
readers, or give variety to my theme, but, as Ismenias, the
Theban, used to show his scholars good and bad performers on the
flute, and to tell them, "You should play like this man," and
"You should not play like that," and as Antigenidas used to say,
Young people would take greater pleasure in hearing good
playing, if first they were set to hear bad, so, and in the same
manner, it seems to me likely enough that we shall be all the
more zealous and more emulous to read, observe, and imitate the
better lives, if we are not left in ignorance of the blameworthy
and the bad.

For this reason, the following book contains the lives of
Demetrius Poliorcetes, and Antonius the Triumvir; two persons
who have abundantly justified the words of Plato, that great
natures produce great vices as well as virtues. Both alike were
amorous and intemperate, warlike and munificent, sumptuous in
their way of living, and overbearing in their manners. And the
likeness of their fortunes carried out the resemblance in their
characters. Not only were their lives each a series of great
successes and great disasters, mighty acquisitions and
tremendous losses of power, sudden overthrows, followed by
unexpected recoveries, but they died, also, Demetrius in actual
captivity to his enemies, and Antony on the verge of it.

Antigonus had by his wife, Stratonice, the daughter of
Corrhaeus, two sons; the one of whom, after the name of his
uncle, he called Demetrius, the other had that of his
grandfather Philip, and died young. This is the most general
account, although some have related, that Demetrius was not the
son of Antigonus, but of his brother; and that his own father
dying young, and his mother being afterwards married to
Antigonus, he was accounted to be his son.

Demetrius had not the height of his father Antigonus, though he
was a tall man. But his countenance was one of such singular
beauty and expression, that no painter or sculptor ever produced
a good likeness of him. It combined grace and strength, dignity
with boyish bloom, and, in the midst of youthful heat and
passion, what was hardest of all to represent was a certain
heroic look and air of kingly greatness. Nor did his character
belie his looks, as no one was better able to render himself
both loved and feared. For as he was the most easy and
agreeable of companions, and the most luxurious and delicate of
princes in his drinking and banqueting and daily pleasures, so
in action there was never anyone that showed a more vehement
persistence, or a more passionate energy. Bacchus, skilled in
the conduct of war, and after war in giving peace its pleasures
and joys, seems to have been his pattern among the gods.

He was wonderfully fond of his father Antigonus; and the
tenderness he had for his mother led him, for her sake, to
redouble attentions, which it was evident were not so much owing
to fear or duty as to the more powerful motives of inclination.
It is reported, that, returning one day from hunting, he went
immediately into the apartment of Antigonus, who was conversing
with some ambassadors, and after stepping up and kissing his
father, he sat down by him, just as he was, still holding in his
hand the javelins which he had brought with him. Whereupon
Antigonus, who had just dismissed the ambassadors with their
answer, called out in a loud voice to them, as they were going,
"Mention, also, that this is the way in which we two live
together;" as if to imply to them that it was no slender mark of
the power and security of his government that there was so
perfect a good understanding between himself and his son. Such
an unsociable, solitary thing is power, and so much of jealousy
and distrust in it, that the first and greatest of the
successors of Alexander could make it a thing to glory in that
he was not so afraid of his son as to forbid his standing beside
him with a weapon in his hand. And, in fact, among all the
successors of Alexander, that of Antigonus was the only house
which, for many descents, was exempted from crime of this kind;
or, to state it exactly, Philip was the only one of this family
who was guilty of a son's death. All the other families, we may
fairly say, afforded frequent examples of fathers who brought
their children, husbands their wives, children their mothers, to
untimely ends; and that brothers should put brothers to death
was assumed, like the postulates of mathematicians, as the
common and recognized royal first principle of safety.

Let us here record an example in the early life of Demetrius,
showing his natural humane and kindly disposition. It was an
adventure which passed betwixt him and Mithridates, the son of
Ariobarzanes, who was about the same age with Demetrius, and
lived with him, in attendance on Antigonus; and although nothing
was said or could be said to his reproach, he fell under
suspicion, in consequence of a dream which Antigonus had.
Antigonus thought himself in a fair and spacious field, where he
sowed golden seed, and saw presently a golden crop come up; of
which, however, looking presently again, he saw nothing remain
but the stubble, without the ears. And as he stood by in anger
and vexation, he heard some voices saying, Mithridates had cut
the golden harvest and carried it off into Pontus. Antigonus,
much discomposed with his dream, first bound his son by an oath
not to speak, and then related it to him, adding, that he had
resolved, in consequence, to lose no time in ridding himself of
Mithridates, and making away with him. Demetrius was extremely
distressed; and when the young man came, as usual, to pass his
time with him, to keep his oath he forbore from saying a word,
but, drawing him aside little by little from the company, as
soon as they were by themselves, without opening his lips, with
the point of his javelin he traced before him the words, "Fly,
Mithridates." Mithridates took the hint, and fled by night into
Cappadocia, where Antigonus's dream about him was quickly
brought to its due fulfillment; for he got possession of a large
and fertile territory; and from him descended the line of the
kings of Pontus, which, in the eighth generation, was reduced by
the Romans. This may serve for a specimen of the early goodness
and love of justice that was part of Demetrius's natural

But as in the elements of the world, Empedocles tells us, out of
liking and dislike, there spring up contention and warfare, and
all the more, the closer the contact, or the nearer the approach
of the objects, even so the perpetual hostilities among the
successors of Alexander were aggravated and inflamed, in
particular cases, by juxtaposition of interests and of
territories; as, for example, in the case of Antigonus and
Ptolemy. News came to Antigonus that Ptolemy had crossed from
Cyprus and invaded Syria, and was ravaging the country and
reducing the cities. Remaining, therefore, himself in Phrygia,
he sent Demetrius, now twenty-two years old, to make his first
essay as sole commander in an important charge. He, whose
youthful heat outran his experience, advancing against an
adversary trained in Alexander's school, and practiced in many
encounters, incurred a great defeat near the town of Gaza, in
which eight thousand of his men were taken, and five thousand
killed. His own tent, also, his money, and all his private
effects and furniture, were captured. These, however, Ptolemy
sent back, together with his friends, accompanying them with the
humane and courteous message, that they were not fighting for
anything else but honor and dominion. Demetrius accepted the
gift, praying only to the gods not to leave him long in
Ptolemy's debt, but to let him have an early chance of doing the
like to him. He took his disaster, also, with the temper not of
a boy defeated in his attempt, but of an old and long-tried
general, familiar with reverse of fortune; he busied himself in
collecting his men, replenishing his magazines, watching the
allegiance of the cities, and drilling his new recruits.

Antigonus received the news of the battle with the remark, that
Ptolemy had beaten boys, and would now have to fight with men.
But not to humble the spirit of his son, he acceded to his
request, and left him to command on the next occasion.

Not long after, Cilles, Ptolemy's lieutenant, with a powerful
army, took the field, and, looking upon Demetrius as already
defeated by the previous battle, he had in his imagination
driven him out of Syria before he saw him. But he quickly found
himself deceived; for Demetrius came so unexpectedly upon him
that he surprised both the general and his army, making him and
seven thousand of the soldiers prisoners of war, and possessing
himself of a large amount of treasure. But his joy in the
victory was not so much for the prizes he should keep, as for
those he could restore; and his thankfulness was less for the
wealth and glory than for the means it gave him of requiting his
enemy's former generosity. He did not, however, take it into
his own hands, but wrote to his father. And on receiving leave
to do as he liked, he sent back to Ptolemy Cilles and his
friends, loaded with presents. This defeat drove Ptolemy out of
Syria, and brought Antigonus from Celaenae, to enjoy the
victory, and the sight of the son who had gained it.

Soon after, Demetrius was sent to bring the Nabathaean Arabs
into obedience. And here he got into a district without water,
and incurred considerable danger, but by his resolute and
composed demeanor he overawed the barbarians, and returned after
receiving from them a large amount of booty, and seven hundred
camels. Not long after, Seleucus, whom Antigonus had formerly
chased out of Babylon, but who had afterwards recovered his
dominion by his own efforts and maintained himself in it, went
with large forces on an expedition to reduce the tribes on the
confines of India and the provinces near Mount Caucasus. And
Demetrius, conjecturing that he had left Mesopotamia but
slenderly guarded in his absence, suddenly passed the Euphrates
with his army, and made his way into Babylonia unexpectedly;
where he succeeded in capturing one of the two citadels, out of
which he expelled the garrison of Seleucus, and placed in it
seven thousand men of his own. And after allowing his soldiers
to enrich themselves with all the spoil they could carry with
them out of the country, he retired to the sea, leaving Seleucus
more securely master of his dominions than before, as he seemed
by this conduct to abandon every claim to a country which he
treated like an enemy's. However, by a rapid advance, he
rescued Halicarnassus from Ptolemy, who was besieging it. The
glory which this act obtained them inspired both the father and
son with a wonderful desire for freeing Greece, which Cassander
and Ptolemy had everywhere reduced to slavery. No nobler or
juster war was undertaken by any of the kings; the wealth they
had gained while humbling, with Greek assistance, the barbarians
being thus employed, for honor's sake and good repute, in
helping the Greeks. When the resolution was taken to begin
their attempt with Athens, one of his friends told Antigonus, if
they captured Athens, they must keep it safe in their own hands,
as by this gangway they might step out from their ships into
Greece when they pleased. But Antigonus would not hear of it;
he did not want a better or a steadier gangway than people's
good-will; and from Athens, the beacon of the world, the news of
their conduct would soon be handed on to all the world's
inhabitants. So Demetrius, with a sum of five thousand talents,
and a fleet of two hundred and fifty ships, set sail for Athens,
where Demetrius the Phalerian was governing the city for
Cassander, with a garrison lodged in the port of Munychia. By
good fortune and skillful management he appeared before Piraeus,
on the twenty-sixth of Thargelion, before anything had been
heard of him. Indeed, when his ships were seen, they were taken
for Ptolemy's, and preparations were commenced for receiving
them; till at last, the generals discovering their mistake,
hurried down, and all was alarm and confusion, and attempts to
push forward preparations to oppose the landing of this hostile
force. For Demetrius, having found the entrances of the port
undefended, stood in directly, and was by this time safely
inside, before the eyes of everybody, and made signals from his
ship, requesting a peaceable hearing. And on leave being given,
he caused a herald with a loud voice to make proclamation that
he was come thither by the command of his father, with no other
design than what he prayed the gods to prosper with success, to
give the Athenians their liberty, to expel the garrison, and to
restore the ancient laws and constitution of the country.

The people, hearing this, at once threw down their shields, and,
clapping their hands, with loud acclamations entreated Demetrius
to land, calling him their deliverer and benefactor. And the
Phalerian and his party, who saw that there was nothing for it
but to receive the conqueror, whether he should perform his
promises or not, sent, however, messengers to beg for his
protection; to whom Demetrius gave a kind reception, and sent
back with them Aristodemus of Miletus, one of his father's
friends. The Phalerian, under the change of government, was
more afraid of his fellow-citizens than of the enemy; but
Demetrius took precautions for him, and, out of respect for his
reputation and character, sent him with a safe conduct to
Thebes, whither he desired to go. For himself, he declared he
would not, in spite of all his curiosity, put his foot in the
city, till he had completed its deliverance by driving out the
garrison. So, blockading Munychia with a palisade and trench,
he sailed off to attack Megara, where also there was one of
Cassander's garrisons. But, hearing that Cratesipolis, the wife
of Alexander son of Polysperchon, who was famous for her beauty,
was well disposed to see him, he left his troops near Megara,
and set out with a few light-armed attendants for Patrae, where
she was now staying. And, quitting these also, he pitched his
tent apart from everybody, that the woman might pay her visit
without being seen. This some of the enemy perceived, and
suddenly attacked him; and, in his alarm, he was obliged to
disguise himself in a shabby cloak, and run for it, narrowly
escaping the shame of being made a prisoner, in reward for his
foolish passion. And as it was, his tent and money were taken.
Megara, however, surrendered, and would have been pillaged by
the soldiers, but for the urgent intercession of the Athenians.
The garrison was driven out, and the city restored to
independence. While he was occupied in this, he remembered that
Stilpo, the philosopher, famous for his choice of a life of
tranquillity, was residing here. He, therefore, sent for him,
and begged to know whether anything belonging to him had been
taken. "No," replied Stilpo, "I have not met with anyone to
take away knowledge." Pretty nearly all the servants in the
city had been stolen away; and so, when Demetrius, renewing his
courtesies to Stilpo, on taking leave of him, said, "I leave
your city, Stilpo, a city of freemen," "certainly," replied
Stilpo, "there is not one serving man left among us all."

Returning from Megara, he sat down before the citadel of
Munychia, which in a few days he took by assault, and caused the
fortifications to be demolished; and thus having accomplished
his design, upon the request and invitation of the Athenians he
made his entrance into the upper city, where, causing the people
to be summoned, he publicly announced to them that their ancient
constitution was restored, and that they should receive from his
father, Antigonus, a present of one hundred and fifty thousand
measures of wheat, and such a supply of timber as would enable
them to build a hundred galleys. In this manner did the
Athenians recover their popular institutions, after the space of
fifteen years from the time of the war of Lamia and the battle
before Cranon, during which interval of time the government had
been administered nominally as an oligarchy, but really by a
single man, Demetrius the Phalerian being so powerful. But the
excessive honors which the Athenians bestowed, for these noble
and generous acts, upon Demetrius, created offense and disgust.
The Athenians were the first who gave Antigonus and Demetrius
the title of kings, which hitherto they had made it a point of
piety to decline, as the one remaining royal honor still
reserved for the lineal descendants of Philip and Alexander, in
which none but they could venture to participate. Another name
which they received from no people but the Athenians was that of
the Tutelar Deities and Deliverers. And to enhance this
flattery, by a common vote it was decreed to change the style of
the city, and not to have the years named any longer from the
annual archon; a priest of the two Tutelary Divinities, who was
to be yearly chosen, was to have this honor, and all public acts
and instruments were to bear their date by his name. They
decreed, also, that the figures of Antigonus and Demetrius
should be woven, with those of the gods, into the pattern of the
great robe. They consecrated the spot where Demetrius first
alighted from his chariot, and built an altar there, with the
name of the Altar of the Descent of Demetrius. They created two
new tribes, calling them after the names of these princes, the
Antigonid and the Demetriad; and to the Council, which consisted
of five hundred persons, fifty being chosen out of every tribe,
they added one hundred more to represent these new tribes. But
the wildest proposal was one made by Stratocles, the great
inventor of all these ingenious and exquisite compliments,
enacting that the members of any deputation that the city should
send to Demetrius or Antigonus should have the same title as
those sent to Delphi or Olympia for the performance of the
national sacrifices in behalf of the state, at the great Greek
festivals. This Stratocles was, in all respects, an audacious
and abandoned character, and seemed to have made it his object
to copy, by his buffoonery and impertinence, Cleon's old
familiarity with the people. His mistress, Phylacion, one day
bringing him a dish of brains and neckbones for his dinner,
"Oh," said he, "I am to dine upon the things which we statesmen
play at ball with." At another time, when the Athenians
received their naval defeat near Amorgos, he hastened home
before the news could reach the city, and, having a chaplet on
his head, came riding through the Ceramicus, announcing that
they had won a victory, and moved a vote for thanksgivings to
the gods, and a distribution of meat among the people in their
tribes. Presently after came those who brought home the wrecks
from the battle; and when the people exclaimed at what he had
done, he came boldly to face the outcry, and asked what harm
there had been in giving them two days' pleasure.

Such was Stratocles. And, "adding flame to fire," as
Aristophanes says, there was one who, to outdo Stratocles,
proposed, that it should be decreed, that whensoever Demetrius
should honor their city with his presence, they should treat him
with the same show of hospitable entertainment, with which Ceres
and Bacchus are received; and the citizen who exceeded the rest
in the splendor and costliness of his reception should have a
sum of money granted him from the public purse to make a sacred
offering. Finally, they changed the name of the month of
Munychion, and called it Demetrion; they gave the name of the
Demetrian to the odd day between the end of the old and the
beginning of the new month; and turned the feast of Bacchus, the
Dionysia, into the Demetria, or feast of Demetrius. Most of
these changes were marked by the divine displeasure. The sacred
robe, in which, according to their decree, the figures of
Demetrius and Antigonus had been woven with those of Jupiter and
Minerva, was caught by a violent gust of wind, while the
procession was conveying it through the Ceramicus, and was torn
from the top to the bottom. A crop of hemlock, a plant which
scarcely grew anywhere, even in the country thereabout, sprang
up in abundance round the altars which they had erected to these
new divinities. They had to omit the solemn procession at the
feast of Bacchus, as upon the very day of its celebration there
was such a severe and rigorous frost, coming quite out of its
time, that not only the vines and fig-trees were killed, but
almost all the wheat was destroyed in the blade. Accordingly,
Philippides, an enemy to Stratocles, attacked him in a comedy,
in the following verses: --

He for whom frosts that nipped your vines were sent,
And for whose sins the holy robe was rent,
Who grants to men the gods' own honors, he,
Not the poor stage, is now the people's enemy.

Philippides was a great favorite with king Lysimachus, from whom
the Athenians received, for his sake, a variety of kindnesses.
Lysimachus went so far as to think it a happy omen to meet or
see Philippides at the outset of any enterprise or expedition.
And, in general, he was well thought of for his own character,
as a plain, uninterfering person, with none of the officious,
self-important habits of a court. Once, when Lysimachus was
solicitous to show him kindness, and asked what he had that he
could make him a present of, "Anything," replied Philippides,
"but your state secrets." The stage-player, we thought,
deserved a place in our narrative quite as well as the public

But that which exceeded all the former follies and flatteries,
was the proposal of Dromoclides of Sphettus; who, when there was
a debate about sending to the Delphic Oracle to inquire the
proper course for the consecration of certain bucklers, moved in
the assembly that they should rather send to receive an oracle
from Demetrius. I will transcribe the very words of the order,
which was in these terms: "May it be happy and propitious. The
people of Athens have decreed, that a fit person shall be
chosen among the Athenian citizens, who shall be deputed to be
sent to the Deliverer; and after he hath duly performed the
sacrifices, shall inquire of the Deliverer, in what most
religious and decent manner he will please to direct, at the
earliest possible time, the consecration of the bucklers; and
according to the answer the people shall act." With this
befooling they completed the perversion of a mind which even
before was not so strong or sound as it should have been.

During his present leisure in Athens, he took to wife Eurydice,
a descendant of the ancient Miltiades, who had been married to
Opheltas, the ruler of Cyrene, and after his death had come back
to Athens. The Athenians took the marriage as a compliment and
favor to the city. But Demetrius was very free in these
matters, and was the husband of several wives at once; the
highest place and honor among all being retained by Phila, who
was Antipater's daughter, and had been the wife of Craterus, the
one of all the successors of Alexander who left behind him the
strongest feelings of attachment among the Macedonians. And for
these reasons Antigonus had obliged him to marry her,
notwithstanding the disparity of their years, Demetrius being
quite a youth, and she much older; and when upon that account he
made some difficulty in complying, Antigonus whispered in his
ear the maxim from Euripides, broadly substituting a new word
for the original, serve, --

Natural or not,
A man must wed where profit will be got.

Any respect, however, which he showed either to Phila or to his
other wives did not go so far as to prevent him from consorting
with any number of mistresses, and bearing, in this respect,
the worst character of all the princes of his time.

A summons now arrived from his father, ordering him to go and
fight with Ptolemy in Cyprus, which he was obliged to obey,
sorry as he was to abandon Greece. And in quitting this nobler
and more glorious enterprise, he sent to Cleonides, Ptolemy's
general, who was holding garrisons in Sicyon and Corinth,
offering him money to let the cities be independent. But on his
refusal, he set sail hastily, taking additional forces with him,
and made for Cyprus; where, immediately upon his arrival, he
fell upon Menelaus, the brother of Ptolemy, and gave him a
defeat. But when Ptolemy himself came in person, with large
forces both on land and sea, for some little time nothing took
place beyond an interchange of menaces and lofty talk. Ptolemy
bade Demetrius sail off before the whole armament came up, if he
did not wish to be trampled under foot; and Demetrius offered to
let him retire, on condition of his withdrawing his garrisons
from Sicyon and Corinth. And not they alone, but all the other
potentates and princes of the time, were in anxiety for the
uncertain impending issue of the conflict; as it seemed evident,
that the conqueror's prize would be, not Cyprus or Syria, but
the absolute supremacy.

Ptolemy had brought a hundred and fifty galleys with him, and
gave orders to Menelaus to sally, in the heat of the battle, out
of the harbor of Salamis, and attack with sixty ships the rear
of Demetrius. Demetrius, however, opposing to these sixty ten
of his galleys, which were a sufficient number to block up the
narrow entrance of the harbor, and drawing out his land forces
along all the headlands running out into the sea, went into
action with a hundred and eighty galleys, and, attacking with
the utmost boldness and impetuosity, utterly routed Ptolemy, who
fled with eight ships, the sole remnant of his fleet, seventy
having been taken with all their men, and the rest destroyed in
the battle; while the whole multitude of attendants, friends,
and women, that had followed in the ships of burden, all the
arms, treasure, and military engines fell, without exception,
into the hands of Demetrius, and were by him collected and
brought into the camp. Among the prisoners was the celebrated
Lamia, famed at one time for her skill on the flute, and
afterwards renowned as a mistress. And although now upon the
wane of her youthful beauty, and though Demetrius was much her
junior, she exercised over him so great a charm, that all other
women seemed to be amorous of Demetrius, but Demetrius amorous
only of Lamia. After this signal victory, Demetrius came before
Salamis; and Menelaus, unable to make any resistance,
surrendered himself and all his fleet, twelve hundred horse, and
twelve thousand foot, together with the place. But that which
added more than all to the glory and splendor of the success was
the humane and generous conduct of Demetrius to the vanquished.
For, after he had given honorable funerals to the dead, he
bestowed liberty upon the living; and that he might not forget
the Athenians, he sent them, as a present, complete arms for
twelve hundred men.

To carry this happy news, Aristodemus of Miletus, the most
perfect flatterer belonging to the court, was dispatched to
Antigonus; and he, to enhance the welcome message, was resolved,
it would appear, to make his most successful effort. When he
crossed from Cyprus, he bade the galley which conveyed him come
to anchor off the land; and, having ordered all the ship's crew
to remain aboard, he took the boat, and was set ashore alone.
Thus he proceeded to Antigonus, who, one may well imagine, was
in suspense enough about the issue, and suffered all the
anxieties natural to men engaged in so perilous a struggle. And
when he heard that Aristodemus was coming alone, it put him into
yet greater trouble; he could scarcely forbear from going out to
meet him himself; he sent messenger on messenger, and friend
after friend, to inquire what news. But Aristodemus, walking
gravely and with a settled countenance, without making any
answer, still proceeded quietly onward; until Antigonus, quite
alarmed and no longer able to refrain, got up and met him at the
gate, whither he came with a crowd of anxious followers now
collected and running after him. As soon as he saw Antigonus
within hearing, stretching out his hands, he accosted him with
the loud exclamation, "Hail, king Antigonus! we have defeated
Ptolemy by sea, and have taken Cyprus and sixteen thousand eight
hundred prisoners." "Welcome, Aristodemus," replied Antigonus,
"but, as you chose to torture us so long for your good news, you
may wait awhile for the reward of it."

Upon this the people around gave Antigonus and Demetrius, for
the first time, the title of kings. His friends at once set a
diadem on the head of Antigonus; and he sent one presently to
his son, with a letter addressed to him as King Demetrius. And
when this news was told in Egypt, that they might not seem to be
dejected with the late defeat, Ptolemy's followers also took
occasion to bestow the style of king upon him; and the rest of
the successors of Alexander were quick to follow the example.
Lysimachus began to wear the diadem; and Seleucus, who had
before received the name in all addresses from the barbarians,
now also took it upon him in all business with the Greeks.
Cassander still retained his usual superscription in his
letters, but others, both in writing and speaking, gave him the
royal title. Nor was this the mere accession of a name, or
introduction of a new fashion. The men's own sentiments about
themselves were disturbed, and their feelings elevated; a spirit
of pomp and arrogance passed into their habits of life and
conversation, as a tragic actor on the stage modifies, with a
change of dress, his step, his voice, his motions in sitting
down, his manner in addressing another. The punishments they
inflicted were more violent after they had thus laid aside that
modest style under which they formerly dissembled their power,
and the influence of which had often made them gentler and less
exacting to their subjects. A single pattering voice effected a
revolution in the world.

Antigonus, extremely elevated with the success of his arms in
Cyprus under the conduct of Demetrius, resolved to push on his
good fortune, and to lead his forces in person against Ptolemy
by land, whilst Demetrius should coast with a great fleet along
the shore, to assist him by sea. The issue of the contest was
intimated in a dream which Medius, a friend to Antigonus, had at
this time in his sleep. He thought he saw Antigonus and his
whole army running, as if it had been a race; that, in the first
part of the course, he went off showing great strength and
speed; gradually, however, his pace slackened; and at the end he
saw him come lagging up, tired and almost breathless and quite
spent. Antigonus himself met with many difficulties by land;
and Demetrius, encountering a great storm at sea, was driven,
with the loss of many or his ships, upon a dangerous coast
without a harbor. So the expedition returned without effecting
anything. Antigonus, now nearly eighty years old, was no
longer well able to go through the fatigues of a marching
campaign, though rather on account of his great size and
corpulence than from loss of strength; and for this reason he
left things to his son, whose fortune and experience appeared
sufficient for all undertakings, and whose luxury and expense
and revelry gave him no concern. For though in peace he vented
himself in his pleasures, and, when there was nothing to do, ran
headlong into any excesses, in war he was as sober and
abstemious as the most temperate character. The story is told,
that once, after Lamia had gained open supremacy over him, the
old man, when Demetrius coming home from abroad began to kiss
him with unusual warmth, asked him if he took him for Lamia. At
another time, Demetrius, after spending several days in a
debauch, excused himself for his absence, by saying he had had a
violent flux. "So I heard," replied Antigonus; "was it of
Thasian wine, or Chian?" Once he was told his son was ill, and
went to see him. At the door he met some young beauty. Going
in, he sat down by the bed and took his pulse. "The fever,"
said Demetrius, "has just left me." "O yes," replied the
father, "I met it going out at the door." Demetrius's great
actions made Antigonus treat him thus easily. The Scythians in
their drinking-bouts twang their bows, to keep their courage
awake amidst the dreams of indulgence; but he would resign his
whole being, now, to pleasure, and now to action; and though he
never let thoughts of the one intrude upon the pursuit of the
other, yet, when the time came for preparing for war, he showed
as much capacity as any man.

And indeed his ability displayed itself even more in preparing
for, than in conducting a war. He thought he could never be too
well supplied for every possible occasion, and took a pleasure,
not to be satiated, in great improvements in ship-building and
machines. He did not waste his natural genius and power of
mechanical research on toys and idle fancies, turning, painting,
and playing on the flute, like some kings, Aeropus, for example,
king of Macedon, who spent his days in making small lamps and
tables; or Attalus Philometor, whose amusement was to cultivate
poisons, henbane and hellebore, and even hemlock, aconite, and
dorycnium, which he used to sow himself in the royal gardens,
and made it his business to gather the fruits and collect the
juices in their season. The Parthian kings took a pride in
whetting and sharpening with their own hands the points of their
arrows and javelins. But when Demetrius played the workman, it
was like a king, and there was magnificence in his handicraft.
The articles he produced bore marks upon the face of them not of
ingenuity only, but of a great mind and a lofty purpose. They
were such as a king might not only design and pay for, but use
his own hands to make; and while friends might be terrified with
their greatness, enemies could be charmed with their beauty; a
phrase which is not so pretty to the ear as it is true to the
fact. The very people against whom they were to be employed
could not forbear running to gaze with admiration upon his
galleys of five and six ranges of oars, as they passed along
their coasts; and the inhabitants of besieged cities came on
their walls to see the spectacle of his famous City-takers.
Even Lysimachus, of all the kings of his time the greatest enemy
of Demetrius, coming to raise the siege of Soli in Cilicia, sent
first to desire permission to see his galleys and engines, and,
having had his curiosity gratified by a view of them, expressed
his admiration and quitted the place. The Rhodians, also, whom
he long besieged, begged him, when they concluded a peace, to
let them have some of his engines, which they might preserve as
a memorial at once of his power and of their own brave

The quarrel between him and the Rhodians was on account of their
being allies to Ptolemy, and in the siege the greatest of all
the engines was planted against their walls. The base of it was
exactly square, each side containing twenty-four cubits; it rose
to a height of thirty-three cubits, growing narrower from the
base to the top. Within were several apartments or chambers,
which were to be filled with armed men, and in every story the
front towards the enemy had windows for discharging missiles of
all sorts, the whole being filled with soldiers for every
description of fighting. And what was most wonderful was that,
notwithstanding its size, when it was moved it never tottered or
inclined to one side, but went forward on its base in perfect
equilibrium, with a loud noise and great impetus, astounding the
minds, and yet at the same time charming the eyes of all the

Whilst Demetrius was at this same siege, there were brought to
him two iron cuirasses from Cyprus, weighing each of them no
more than forty pounds, and Zoilus, who had forged them, to show
the excellence of their temper, desired that one of them might
be tried with a catapult missile, shot out of one of the engines
at no greater distance than six and twenty paces; and, upon the
experiment, it was found, that though the dart exactly hit the
cuirass, yet it made no greater impression than such a slight
scratch as might be made with the point of a style or graver.
Demetrius took this for his own wearing, and gave the other to
Alcimus the Epirot, the best soldier and strongest man of all
his captains, the only one who used to wear armor to the weight
of two talents, one talent being the weight which others thought
sufficient. He fell during this siege in a battle near the

The Rhodians made a brave defense, insomuch that Demetrius saw
he was making but little progress, and only persisted out of
obstinacy and passion; and the rather because the Rhodians,
having captured a ship in which some clothes and furniture, with
letters from herself; were coming to him from Phila his wife,
had sent on everything to Ptolemy, and had not copied the
honorable example of the Athenians, who, having surprised an
express sent from king Philip, their enemy, opened all the
letters he was charged with, excepting only those directed to
queen Olympias, which they returned with the seal unbroken.
Yet, although greatly provoked, Demetrius, into whose power it
shortly after came to repay the affront, would not suffer
himself to retaliate. Protogenes the Caunian had been making
them a painting of the story of Ialysus, which was all but
completed, when it was taken by Demetrius in one of the suburbs.
The Rhodians sent a herald begging him to be pleased to spare
the work and not let it be destroyed; Demetrius's answer to
which was that he would rather burn the pictures of his father
than a piece of art which had cost so much labor. It is said to
have taken Protogenes seven years to paint, and they tell us
that Apelles, when he first saw it, was struck dumb with wonder,
and called it, on recovering his speech, "a great labor and a
wonderful success," adding, however, that it had not the graces
which carried his own paintings as it were up to the heavens.
This picture, which came with the rest in the general mass to
Rome, there perished by fire.

While the Rhodians were thus defending their city to the
uttermost, Demetrius, who was not sorry for an excuse to retire,
found one in the arrival of ambassadors from Athens, by whose
mediation terms were made that the Rhodians should bind
themselves to aid Antigonus and Demetrius against all enemies,
Ptolemy excepted.

The Athenians entreated his help against Cassander, who was
besieging the city. So he went thither with a fleet of three
hundred and thirty ships, and many soldiers; and not only drove
Cassander out of Attica, but pursued him as far as Thermopylae,
routed him, and became master of Heraclea, which came over to
him voluntarily, and of a body of six thousand Macedonians,
which also joined him. Returning hence, he gave their liberty
to all the Greeks on this side Thermopylae, and made alliance
with the Boeotians, took Cenchreae, and reducing the fortresses
of Phyle and Panactum, in which were garrisons of Cassander,
restored them to the Athenians. They, in requital, though they
had before been so profuse in bestowing honors upon him, that
one would have thought they had exhausted all the capacities of
invention, showed they had still new refinements of adulation to
devise for him. They gave him, as his lodging, the back temple
in the Parthenon, and here he lived, under the immediate roof,
as they meant it to imply, of his hostess, Minerva; no reputable
or well-conducted guest to be quartered upon a maiden goddess.
When his brother Philip was once put into a house where three
young women were living, Antigonus saying nothing to him, sent
for his quartermaster, and told him, in the young man's
presence, to find some less crowded lodgings for him.

Demetrius, however, who should, to say the least, have paid the
goddess the respect due to an elder sister, for that was the
purport of the city's compliment, filled the temple with such
pollutions that the place seemed least profaned when his license
confined itself to common women like Chrysis, Lamia, Demo, and

The fair name of the city forbids any further plain particulars;
let us only record the severe virtue of the young Damocles,
surnamed, and by that surname pointed out to Demetrius, the
beautiful; who, to escape importunities, avoided every place of
resort, and when at last followed into a private bathing room by
Demetrius, seeing none at hand to help or deliver, seized the
lid from the cauldron, and, plunging into the boiling water,
sought a death untimely and unmerited, but worthy of the country
and of the beauty that occasioned it. Not so Cleaenetus, the
son of Cleomedon, who, to obtain from Demetrius a letter of
intercession to the people in behalf of his father, lately
condemned in a fine of fifty talents, disgraced himself, and got
the city into trouble. In deference to the letter, they
remitted the fine, yet they made an edict prohibiting any
citizen for the future to bring letters from Demetrius. But
being informed that Demetrius resented this as a great
indignity, they not only rescinded in alarm the former order,
but put some of the proposers and advisers of it to death and
banished others, and furthermore enacted and decreed, that
whatsoever king Demetrius should in time to come ordain, should
be accounted right towards the gods and just towards men; and
when one of the better class of citizens said Stratocles must be
mad to use such words, Demochares of Leuconoe observed, he
would be a fool not to be mad. For Stratocles was well rewarded
for his flatteries; and the saying was remembered against
Demochares, who was soon after sent into banishment. So fared
the Athenians, after being relieved of the foreign garrison, and
recovering what was called their liberty.

After this Demetrius marched with his forces into Peloponnesus,
where he met with none to oppose him, his enemies flying before
him, and allowing the cities to join him. He received into
friendship all Acte, as it is called, and all Arcadia except
Mantinea. He bought the liberty of Argos, Corinth, and Sicyon,
by paying a hundred talents to their garrisons to evacuate them.
At Argos, during the feast of Juno, which happened at the time,
he presided at the games, and, joining in the festivities with
the multitude of the Greeks assembled there, he celebrated his
marriage with Deidamia, daughter of Aeacides, king of the
Molossians, and sister of Pyrrhus. At Sicyon he told the people
they had put the city just outside of the city, and, persuading
them to remove to where they now live, gave their town not only
a new site but a new name, Demetrias, after himself. A general
assembly met on the Isthmus, where he was proclaimed, by a great
concourse of people, the Commander of Greece, like Philip and
Alexander of old; whose superior he, in the present height of
his prosperity and power, was willing enough to consider
himself; and, certainly, in one respect he outdid Alexander, who
never refused their title to other kings, or took on himself the
style of king of kings, though many kings received both their
title and their authority as such from him; whereas Demetrius
used to ridicule those who gave the name of king to any except
himself and his father; and in his entertainments was well
pleased when his followers, after drinking to him and his father
as kings, went on to drink the health of Seleucus, with the
title of Master of the Elephants; of Ptolemy, by the name of
High Admiral; of Lysimachus, with the addition of Treasurer; and
of Agathocles, with the style of Governor of the Island of
Sicily. The other kings merely laughed when they were told of
this vanity; Lysimachus alone expressed some indignation at
being considered a eunuch; such being usually then selected for
the office of treasurer. And, in general, there was a more
bitter enmity between him and Lysimachus than with any of the
others. Once, as a scoff at his passion for Lamia, Lysimachus
said he had never before seen a courtesan act a queen's part; to
which Demetrius rejoined that his mistress was quite as honest
us Lysimachus's own Penelope.

But to proceed. Demetrius being about to return to Athens,
signified by letter to the city that he desired immediate
admission to the rites of initiation into the Mysteries, and
wished to go through all the stages of the
ceremony, from first to last, without delay. This was
absolutely contrary to the rules, and a thing which had never
been allowed before; for the lesser mysteries were celebrated in
the month of Anthesterion, and the great solemnity in
Boedromion, and none of the novices were finally admitted till
they had completed a year after this latter. Yet all this
notwithstanding, when in the public assembly these letters of
Demetrius were produced and read, there was not one single
person who had the courage to oppose them, except Pythodorus,
the torch-bearer. But it signified nothing, for Stratocles at
once proposed that the month of Munychion, then current, should
by edict be reputed to be the month of Anthesterion; which being
voted and done, and Demetrius thereby admitted to the lesser
ceremonies, by another vote they turned the same month of
Munychion into the other month of Boedromion; the celebration of
the greater mysteries ensued, and Demetrius was fully admitted.
These proceedings gave the comedian, Philippides, a new occasion
to exercise his wit upon Stratocles,

whose flattering fear
Into one month hath crowded all the year.

And on the vote that Demetrius should lodge in the Parthenon,

Who turns the temple to a common inn,
And makes the Virgin's house a house of sin.

Of all the disreputable and flagitious acts of which he was
guilty in this visit, one that particularly hurt the feelings of
the Athenians was that, having given comment that they should
forthwith raise for his service two hundred and fifty talents,
and they to comply with his demands being forced to levy it upon
the people with the utmost rigor and severity, when they
presented him with the money, which they had with such
difficulty raised, as if it were a trifling sum, he ordered it
to be given to Lamia and the rest of his women, to buy soap.
The loss, which was bad enough, was less galling than the shame,
and the words more intolerable than the act which they
accompanied. Though, indeed, the story is variously reported;
and some say it was the Thessalians, and not the Athenians, who
were thus treated. Lamia, however, exacted contributions
herself to pay for an entertainment she gave to the king, and
her banquet was so renowned for its sumptuosity, that a
description of it was drawn up by the Samian writer, Lynceus.
Upon this occasion, one of the comic writers gave Lamia the name
of the real Helepolis; and Demochares of Soli called Demetrius
Mythus, because the fable always has its Lamia, and so had he.

And, in truth, his passion for this woman and the prosperity in
which she lived were such as to draw upon him not only the envy
and jealousy of all his wives, but the animosity even of his
friends. For example, on Lysimachus's showing to some
ambassadors from Demetrius the scars of the wounds which he had
received upon his thighs and arms by the paws of the lion with
which Alexander had shut him up, after hearing his account of
the combat, they smiled and answered, that their king, also, was
not without his scars, but could show upon his neck the marks of
a Lamia, a no less dangerous beast. It was also matter of
wonder that, though he had objected so much to Phila on account
of her age, he was yet such a slave to Lamia, who was so long
past her prime. One evening at supper, when she played the
flute, Demetrius asked Demo, whom the men called Madness, what
she thought of her. Demo answered she thought her an old woman.
And when a quantity of sweetmeats were brought in, and the king
said again, "See what presents I get from Lamia!" "My old
mother," answered Demo, "will send you more, if you will make
her your mistress." Another story is told of a criticism passed
by Lamia or the famous judgment of Bocchoris. A young Egyptian
had long made suit to Thonis, the courtesan, offering a sum of
gold for her favor. But before it came to pass, he dreamed one
night that he had obtained it, and, satisfied with the shadow,
felt no more desire for the substance. Thonis upon this brought
an action for the sum. Bocchoris, the judge, on hearing the
case, ordered the defendant to bring into court the full amount
in a vessel, which he was to move to and fro in his hand, and
the shadow of it was to be adjudged to Thonis. The fairness of
this sentence Lamia contested, saying the young man's desire
might have been satisfied with the dream, but Thonis's desire
for the money could not be relieved by the shadow. Thus much
for Lamia.

And now the story passes from the comic to the tragic stage in
pursuit of the acts and fortunes of its subject. A general
league of the kings, who were now gathering and combining their
forces to attack Antigonus, recalled Demetrius from Greece. He
was encouraged by finding his father full of a spirit and
resolution for the combat that belied his years. Yet it would
seem to be true, that if Antigonus could only have borne to
make some trifling concessions, and if he had shown any
moderation in his passion for empire, he might have maintained
for himself till his death, and left to his son behind him, the
first place among the kings. But he was of a violent and
haughty spirit; and the insulting words as well as actions in
which he allowed himself could not be borne by young and
powerful princes, and provoked them into combining against him.
Though now when he was told of the confederacy, he could not
forbear from saying that this flock of birds would soon be
scattered by one stone and a single shout. He took the field at
the head of more than seventy thousand foot, and of ten thousand
horse, and seventy-five elephants. His enemies had sixty-four
thousand foot, five hundred more horse than he, elephants to the
number of four hundred, and a hundred and twenty chariots. On
their near approach to each other, an alteration began to be
observable, not in the purposes, but in the presentiments of
Antigonus. For whereas in all former campaigns he had ever
shown himself lofty and confident, loud in voice and scornful in
speech, often by some joke or mockery on the eve of battle
expressing his contempt and displaying his composure, he was now
remarked to be thoughtful, silent, and retired. He presented
Demetrius to the army, and declared him his successor; and what
everyone thought stranger than all was that he now conferred
alone in his tent with Demetrius, whereas in former time he had
never entered into any secret consultations even with him; but
had always followed his own advice, made his resolutions, and
then given out his commands. Once when Demetrius was a boy and
asked him how soon the army would move, he is said to have
answered him sharply, "Are you afraid lest you, of all the army,
should not hear the trumpet?"

There were now, however, inauspicious signs, which affected his
spirits. Demetrius, in a dream, had seen Alexander, completely
armed, appear and demand of him what word they intended to give
in the time of the battle; and Demetrius answering that he
intended the word should be "Jupiter and Victory." "Then," said
Alexander, "I will go to your adversaries and find my welcome
with them." And on the morning of the combat, as the armies
were drawing up, Antigonus, going out of the door of his tent,
by some accident or other, stumbled and fell flat upon the
ground, hurting himself a good deal. And on recovering his
feet, lifting up his hands to heaven, he prayed the gods to
grant him "either victory, or death without knowledge of
defeat." When the armies engaged, Demetrius, who commanded the
greatest and best part of the cavalry, made a charge on
Antiochus, the son of Seleucus, and, gloriously routing the
enemy, followed the pursuit, in the pride and exultation of
success, so eagerly, and so unwisely far, that it fatally lost
him the day, for when, perceiving his error, he would have come
in to the assistance of his own infantry, he was not able, the
enemy with their elephants having cut off his retreat. And on
the other hand, Seleucus, observing the main battle of Antigonus
left naked of their horse, did not charge, but made a show of
charging; and keeping them in alarm and wheeling about and still
threatening an attack, he gave opportunity for those who wished
it to separate and come over to him; which a large body of them
did, the rest taking to flight. But the old king Antigonus
still kept his post, and when a strong body of the enemies drew
up to charge him, and one of those about him cried out to him,
"Sir, they are coming upon you," he only replied, "What else
should they do? but Demetrius will come to my rescue." And in
this hope he persisted to the last, looking out on every side
for his son's approach, until he was borne down by a whole
multitude of darts, and fell. His other followers and friends
fled, and Thorax of Larissa remained alone by the body.

The battle having been thus decided, the kings who had gained
the victory, carving up the whole vast empire that had belonged
to Demetrius and Antigonus, like a carcass, into so many
portions, added these new gains to their former possessions. As
for Demetrius, with five thousand foot and four thousand horse,
he fled at his utmost speed to Ephesus, where it was the common
opinion he would seize the treasures of the temple to relieve
his wants; but he, on the contrary, fearing such an attempt on
the part of his soldiers, hastened away, and sailed for Greece,
his chief remaining hopes being placed in the fidelity of the
Athenians, with whom he had left part of his navy and of his
treasure and his wife Deidamia. And in their attachment he had
not the least doubt but he should in this his extremity find a
safe resource. Accordingly when, upon reaching the Cyclades, he
was met by ambassadors from Athens, requesting him not to
proceed to the city, as the people had passed a vote to admit no
king whatever within their walls, and had conveyed Deidamia with
honorable attendance to Megara, his anger and surprise
overpowered him, and the constancy quite failed him which he had
hitherto shown in a wonderful degree under his reverses, nothing
humiliating or mean-spirited having as yet been seen in him
under all his misfortunes. But to be thus disappointed in the
Athenians, and to find the friendship he had trusted prove, upon
trial, thus empty and unreal, was a great pang to him. And, in
truth, an excessive display of outward honor would seem to be
the most uncertain attestation of the real affection of a people
for any king or potentate. Such shows lose their whole credit
as tokens of affection (which has its virtue in the feelings and
moral choice), when we reflect that they may equally proceed
from fear. The same decrees are voted upon the latter motive as
upon the former. And therefore judicious men do not look so
much to statues, paintings, or divine honors that are paid them,
as to their own actions and conduct, judging hence whether they
shall trust these as a genuine, or discredit them as a forced
homage. As in fact nothing is less unusual than for a people,
even while offering compliments, to be disgusted with those who
accept them greedily, or arrogantly, or without respect to the
freewill of the givers.

Demetrius, shamefully used as he thought himself, was in no
condition to revenge the affront. He returned a message of
gentle expostulation, saying, however, that he expected to have
his galleys sent to him, among which was that of thirteen banks
of oars. And this being accorded him, he sailed to the Isthmus,
and, finding his affairs in very ill condition, his garrisons
expelled, and a general secession going on to the enemy, he left
Pyrrhus to attend to Greece, and took his course to the
Chersonesus, where he ravaged the territories of Lysimachus,
and, by the booty which he took, maintained and kept together
his troops, which were now once more beginning to recover and to
show some considerable front. Nor did any of the other princes
care to meddle with him on that side; for Lysimachus had quite
as little claim to be loved, and was more to be feared for his
power. But, not long after, Seleucus sent to treat with
Demetrius for a marriage betwixt himself and Stratonice,
daughter of Demetrius by Phila. Seleucus, indeed, had already,
by Apama the Persian, a son named Antiochus, but he was
possessed of territories that might well satisfy more than one
successor, and he was the rather induced to this alliance with
Demetrius, because Lysimachus had just married himself to one
daughter of king Ptolemy, and his son Agathocles to another.
Demetrius, who looked upon the offer as an unexpected piece of
good fortune, presently embarked with his daughter, and with his
whole fleet sailed for Syria. Having during his voyage to touch
several times on the coast, among other places he landed in part
of Cilicia, which, by the apportionment of the kings after the
defeat of Antigonus, was allotted to Plistarchus, the brother of
Cassander. Plistarchus, who took this descent of Demetrius upon
his coasts as an infraction of his rights, and was not sorry to
have something to complain of hastened away to expostulate in
person with Seleucus for entering separately into relations with
Demetrius, the common enemy, without consulting the other kings.

Demetrius, receiving information of this, seized the
opportunity, and fell upon the city of Quinda, which he
surprised, and took in it twelve hundred talents, still
remaining of the treasure. With this prize, he hastened back to
his galleys, embarked, and set sail. At Rhosus, where his wife
Phila was now with him, he was met by Seleucus, and their
communications with each other at once were put on a frank,
unsuspecting, and kingly footing. First, Seleucus gave a
banquet to Demetrius in his tent in the camp; then Demetrius
received him in the ship of thirteen banks of oars. Meetings
for amusements, conferences, and long visits for general
intercourse succeeded, all without attendants or arms; until at
length Seleucus took his leave, and in great state conducted
Stratonice to Antioch. Demetrius meantime possessed himself of
Cilicia, and sent Phila to her brother Cassander, to answer the
complaints of Plistarchus. And here his wife Deidamia came by
sea out of Greece to meet him, but not long after contracted an
illness, of which she died. After her death, Demetrius, by the
mediation of Seleucus, became reconciled to Ptolemy, and an
agreement was made that he should marry his daughter Ptolemais.
Thus far all was handsomely done on the part of Seleucus. But,
shortly after, desiring to have the province of Cilicia from
Demetrius for a sum of money, and being refused it, he then
angrily demanded of him the cities of Tyre and Sidon, which
seemed a mere piece of arbitrary dealing, and, indeed, an
outrageous thing, that he, who was possessed of all the vast
provinces between India and the Syrian sea, should think himself
so poorly off as for the sake of two cities, which he coveted,
to disturb the peace of his near connection, already a sufferer
under a severe reverse of fortune. However, he did but justify
the saying of Plato, that the only certain way to be truly rich
is not to have more property, but fewer desires. For whoever is
always grasping at more avows that he is still in want, and must
be poor in the midst of affluence.

But Demetrius, whose courage did not sink, resolutely sent him
answer, that, though he were to lose ten thousand battles like
that of Ipsus, he would pay no price for the good-will of such a
son-in-law as Seleucus. He reinforced these cities with
sufficient garrisons to enable them to make a defense against
Seleucus; and, receiving information that Lachares, taking the
opportunity of their civil dissensions, had set up himself as an
usurper over the Athenians, he imagined that if he made a sudden
attempt upon the city, he might now without difficulty get
possession of it. He crossed the sea in safety, with a large
fleet; but, passing along the coast of Attica, was met by a
violent storm, and lost the greater number of his ships, and a
very considerable body of men on board of them. As for him, he
escaped, and began to make war in a petty manner with the
Athenians, but finding himself unable to effect his design, he
sent back orders for raising another fleet, and, with the troops

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