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Title: Plutarch's Lives Volume III.
Author: Plutarch, 46-120?
Language: English
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Translated from the Greek




_Late Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge_,


_Formerly Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge_,










  LIFE OF NIKIAS                                    1
  LIFE OF CRASSUS (_By G. Long_.)                  36
  LIFE OF SERTORIUS (_By G. Long_.)                94
  LIFE OF EUMENES                                 130
  LIFE OF AGESILAUS                               152
  LIFE OF POMPEIUS (_By G. Long_.)                195
  LIFE OF ALEXANDER                               300
  LIFE OF C. CÆSAR (_By G. Long_.)                379
  LIFE OF PHOKION                                 466
  LIFE OF CATO (_By G. Long_.)                    500



As it appears to me that the life of Nikias forms a good
parallel to that of Crassus, and that the misfortunes of
the former in Sicily may be well compared with those
of the latter in Parthia, I must beg of my readers to
believe that in writing upon a subject which has been
described by Thucydides with inimitable grace, clearness,
and pathos, I have no ambition to imitate Timæus, who,
when writing his history, hoped to surpass Thucydides
himself in eloquence, and to show that Philistius was but
an ignorant bungler, and so plunges into an account of
the speeches and battles of his heroes, proving himself
not merely one

    "Who toils on foot afar
    Behind the Lydian car,"

as Pindar has it, but altogether unfit for the office of historian,
and, in the words of Diphilus,

     "Dull-witted, with Sicilian fat for brains."

He often seeks to shelter himself behind the opinions of Xenarchus, as
when he tells us that the Athenians thought it a bad omen that the
general whose name was Victory refused to command the expedition to
Sicily; and when he says that by the mutilation of the Hennas the gods
signified that the Athenians would suffer their chief disasters at the
hands of Hermokrates the son of Hermon; or, again, when he observes
that Herakles might be expected to take the side of the Syracusans
because of Proserpine, the daughter of Demeter, who gave him the dog
Kerberus, and to be angry with the Athenians because they protected
the people of Egesta, who were descended from the Trojans, whereas he
had been wronged by Laomedon, king of Troy, and had destroyed that
city. Timæus was probably led to write this sort of nonsense by the
same critical literary spirit which led him to correct the style of
Philistius, and to find fault with that of Aristotle and Plato. My own
opinion is that to pay too much attention to mere style and to
endeavour to surpass that of other writers, is both trifling and
pedantic, while any attempt to reproduce that of the unapproachable
masterpieces of antiquity springs from a want of power to appreciate
their real value. With regard, then, to the actions of Nikias
described by Thucydides and Philistius, more especially those which
illustrate his true character, having been performed under the stress
of terrible disasters, I shall briefly recapitulate them, lest I be
thought a careless biographer, adding to them whatever scattered
notices I have been able to collect from the writings of other
historians and from public documents and inscriptions; and of these
latter I shall quote only those which enable us to judge what manner
of man he was.

II. The first thing to be noted in describing Nikias is the saying of
Aristotle, that there had been in Athens three citizens of great
ability and patriotism, namely, Nikias, the son of Nikeratus,
Thucydides, the son of Melesias, and Theramenes, the son of Hagnon;
though the latter was not equal to the two former, but was reproached
with being a foreigner from the island of Keos; and, also, because he
was not a stable politician but always inclined to change sides, he
was nicknamed Kothornos, which means a large boot which will fit
either leg. Of these three statesmen the eldest was Thucydides, who
was the leader of the conservative opposition to Perikles; while
Nikias, who was a younger man, rose to a certain eminence during the
life of Perikles, as he acted as his colleague in the command of a
military force, and also filled the office of archon. On the death of
Perikles, Nikias at once became the foremost man in Athens, chiefly by
the favour of the rich and noble, who wished to make use of him to
check the plebeian insolence of Kleon; yet Nikias had the good-will
of the common people, and they were eager to further his interests.
Kleon, indeed, became very powerful by caressing the people and giving
them opportunities for earning money from the State, but in spite of
this, many of the lower classes whose favour he especially strove to
obtain, became disgusted with, his greed and insolence, and preferred
to attach themselves to Nikias. Indeed, there was nothing harsh or
overbearing in the pride of Nikias, which arose chiefly from his fear
of being thought to be currying favour with the people. By nature he
was downhearted and prone to despair, but in war these qualities were
concealed by his invariable success in whatever enterprise he
undertook; while in political life his retiring manner and his dread
of the vulgar demagogues, by whom he was easily put out of
countenance, added to his popularity; for the people fear those who
treat them with haughtiness, and favour those who respect and fear
them. The reason of this is that the greatest honour which the
populace can receive from a great man is not to be treated with
contempt by him.

III. Perikles, indeed, used to govern Athens by sheer force of
character and eloquence, and required no tricks of manner or plausible
speeches to gain him credit with the populace; but Nikias had no
natural gifts of this sort, and owed his position merely to his
wealth. As he could not vie with Kleon in the versatile and humorous
power of speech by which the latter swayed the Athenian masses, he
endeavoured to gain the favour of the people by supplying choruses for
the public dramatic performances and instituting athletic sports on a
scale of lavish expenditure which never before had been equalled by
any citizen. The statue of Pallas, erected by him in the Acropolis, is
standing at this day, although it has lost the gold with which it was
formerly adorned, and also the building which supports the choragic
tripods in the temple of Dionysus, for he often gained a victory when
choragus, and never was vanquished.

It is said that once during the performance of a play at his expense,
a slave of his appeared upon the stage habited as Dionysus; a tall and
handsome youth, and still beardless. The Athenians were charmed with
his appearance, and applauded for a long time, at the end of which
Nikias rose and said that he did not think it right that one whose
body was thus consecrated to a god should be a slave; and consequently
he gave him his freedom. Tradition also tells us how magnificently and
decorously he arranged the procession at Delos. In former times the
choruses sent by the cities of Ionia to sing to the glory of the god
used to sail up to the island in a disorderly fashion, and were at
once met by a rude mob, who called upon, them to sing, so that they
disembarked in a hurry, huddling on their garlands and robes with
unseemly haste and confusion. Nikias disembarked with his chorus upon
the little island of Rhenea close by, with all their vestments and
holy things, and then during the night bridged the strait--which is
very narrow--with a bridge of boats which he had had made at Athens
expressly, which was beautifully ornamented with gilding and rich
tapestry. Next morning at daybreak, he led the procession to the god
over this bridge, with his chorus very richly dressed, and singing as
they passed over the strait. After the sacrifice, the public games,
and the banquet, he set up the brazen palm-tree as an offering to the
god, and also set apart an estate which he had bought for ten thousand
drachmas, as sacred to the god. With the revenues of this land the
people of Delos were to offer sacrifice and to provide themselves with
a feast, and were to pray the gods to bestow blessings on Nikias. All
these injunctions to the people of Delos were inscribed upon a pillar
which he left there to guard his bequest. The palm-tree was afterwards
overturned by a high wind, and in its fall destroyed the great statue
which had been set up by the people of Naxos.

IV. These acts of Nikias may have been prompted by ambition and desire
for display, but when viewed in connection with his superstitious
character they seem more probably to have been the outcome of his
devotional feelings; for we are told by Thucydides that he was one who
stood greatly in awe of the gods, and was wholly devoted to religion.
In one of the dialogues of Pasiphon, we read that he offered sacrifice
daily, and that he kept a soothsayer in his house, whom he pretended
to consult upon affairs of state, but really sought his advice about
his own private concerns, especially about his silver mines. He had
extensive mines at Laurium, the working of which afforded him very
large profits, but yet was attended with great risks. He maintained a
large body of slaves at the works; and most of his property consisted
of the silver produced by them. For this reason he was surrounded by
hangers-on, and persons who endeavoured to obtain a share of his
wealth, and he gave money to all alike, both to those who might do him
harm, and to those who really deserved his liberality, for he gave to
bad men through fear, and to good men through good nature. We may find
proof of this in the writings of the comic poets. Telekleides,
speaking of some informer, says:

    "Charikles a mina gave him, fearing he might say
    Charikles himself was born in a suspicious way;
    And Nikias five minas gave. Now, what his reasons were
    I know full well, but will not tell, for he's a trusty fere."

Eupolis, too, in his comedy of Marikas has a scene where an informer
meets with a poor man who is no politician, and says:

    "A. Say where you last with Nikias did meet.
    B. Never. Save once I saw him in the street.
    A. He owns he saw him. Wherefore should he say
    He saw him, if he meant not to betray
    His crimes?
    C.          My friends, you all perceive the fact,
    That Nikias is taken in the act.
    B. Think you, O fools, that such a man as he
    In any wicked act would taken be."

Just so does Kleon threaten him in Aristophanes's play:

     "The orators I'll silence, and make Nikias afraid."

Phrynichus, too, sneers at his cowardice and fear of the popular
demagogues, when he says:

    "An honest citizen indeed he was,
    And not a coward like to Nikias."

V. Nikias feared so much to give the mob orators grounds for
accusation against him, that he dared not so much as dine with his
follow citizens, and pass his time in their society. Nor did he have
any leisure at all for such amusements, but when general, he used to
spend the whole day in the War office, and when the Senate met he
would be the first to come to the house and the last to leave it. When
there was no public business to be transacted, he was hard to meet
with, as he shut himself up in his house and seldom stirred abroad.
His friends used to tell those who came to his door that they must
pardon him for not receiving them, as he was not at leisure, being
engaged on public business of great importance. One Hieron, whom he
had brought up in his house and educated, assisted him greatly in
throwing this air of mystery and haughty exclusiveness over his life.
This man gave out that he was the son of Dionysius, called Chalkus,
whose poems are still extant, and who was the leader of the expedition
to Italy to found the city of Thurii. Hiero used to keep Nikias
supplied with prophetic responses from the soothsayers, and gave out
to the Athenians that Nikias was toiling night and day on their
behalf, saying that when he was in his bath or at his dinner he was
constantly being interrupted by some important public business or
other, so that, said he, "His night's rest is broken by his labours,
and his private affairs are neglected through his devotion to those of
the public. He has injured his health, and besides losing his fortune,
has been deserted by many of his friends on account of his not being
able to entertain them and make himself agreeable to them; while other
men find in politics a means of obtaining both friends and fortune, at
the expense of the state." In very truth the life of Nikias was such
that he might well apply to himself the words of Agamemnon.

    "In outward show and stately pomp all others I exceed,
    And yet the people's underling I am in very deed."

VI. Perceiving that the Athenian people were willing enough to make
use of the talents of men of ability, and yet ever viewed them with
suspicion and checked them when in full career, as we may learn from
their condemnation of Perikles, their banishment of Damon by
ostracism, and their mistrust of Antiphon the Rhamnusian, and
especially in their treatment of Paches the conqueror of Lesbos, who
while his conduct as general was being enquired into, stabbed himself
in the open court--perceiving this, Nikias always avoided, as far as
he could, taking the command in any important military expedition.
Whenever he was employed as general, he acted with extreme caution,
and was usually successful. He was careful to attribute his success,
not to any skill or courage of his own, but to fortune, being willing
to lessen his glory to avoid the ill-will of mankind. His good fortune
was indeed shown in many remarkable instances: for example, he never
was present at any of the great defeats sustained by the Athenians at
that time, as in Thrace they were defeated by the Greeks of
Chalkidike, but on that occasion Kalliades and Xenophon were acting as
generals, while the defeat in Ætolia took place when Demosthenes was
in command, and at Delium, where a thousand men were slain, they were
led by Hippokrates. For the pestilence Perikles was chiefly blamed,
because he shut up the country people in the city, where the change of
habits and unusual diet produced disease among them. In all these
disasters Nikias alone escaped censure: while he achieved several
military successes, such as the capture of Kythera, an island
conveniently situated off the coast of Laconia, and inhabited by
settlers from that country. He also captured several of the revolted
cities in Thrace, and induced others to return to their allegiance. He
shut up the people of Megara in their city, and thereby at once made
himself master of the island of Minoa, by means of which he shortly
afterwards captured the port of Nisæa, while he also landed his troops
in the Corinthian territory, and beat a Corinthian army which marched
against him, killing many of them, and amongst others Lykophron their
general. On this occasion he accidentally neglected to bury the
corpses of two of his own men who had fallen. As soon as he discovered
this omission, he at once halted his army, and sent a herald to the
enemy to demand the bodies for burial, notwithstanding that by Greek
custom the party which after a battle demand a truce for the burial of
the dead, are understood thereby to admit that they have been
defeated, and it is not thought light for them to erect a trophy in
commemoration of their victory; for the victors remain in possession
of the field of battle, and of the bodies of the dead, and the
vanquished ask for their dead because they are not able to come and
take them. Nevertheless, Nikias thought it right to forego all the
credit of his victory rather than leave two of his countrymen
unburied. He also laid waste the seaboard of Laconia, defeated a
Lacedæmonian force which opposed him,and took Thyrea, which was
garrisoned by Æginetans, whom he brought prisoners to Athens.

VII. Now when Demosthenes threw up a fortification at Pylos, and after
the Peloponnesians had attacked him by sea and by land, some four
hundred Spartans wore left on the island of Sphakteria, the Athenians
thought that it was a matter of great importance, as indeed it was, to
take them prisoners. Yet, as it proved laborious and difficult to
blockade them on the island, because the place was desert and
waterless, so that provisions had to be brought from a great distance
by sea, which was troublesome enough in summer, and would be quite
impossible in winter, they began to be weary of the enterprise, and
were sorry that they had rejected the proposals for peace which had
shortly before been made by the Tasmanians. These proposals were
rejected chiefly because Kleon opposed them. Kleon's opposition was
due to his personal dislike to Nikias; and when he saw him
enthusiastically exerting himself on behalf of the Lacedæmonians, he
at once took the other side, and persuaded the people to reject the
proffered peace. Now as the blockade dragged on for a long time, and
the Athenians learned to what straits their army was reduced, they
became angry with Kleon. He threw the blame upon Nikias, asserting
that it was through his remissness and want of enterprise that the
Spartans still held out, and declaring that, were he himself in chief
command they would soon be captured. Upon this the Athenians turned
round upon him and said, "Why, then, do not you yourself proceed
thither and capture them?" Nikias at once offered to transfer his
command to Kleon, and bade him take what troops he thought necessary,
and, instead of swaggering at home where there was no danger, go and
perform some notable service to the state. At first Kleon was
confused by this unexpected turn of the debate, and declined the
command; but as the Athenians insisted upon it, and Nikias urged him
to do so, he plucked up spirit, accepted the office of general, and
even went so far as to pledge himself within twenty days either to
kill the Spartans on the island or to bring them prisoners to Athens.
The Athenians were more inclined to laugh at this boast than to
believe it; for they were well acquainted with the vainglorious
character of the man, and had often amused themselves at his expense.
It is said that once the public assembly met early and sat for a long
time waiting for Kleon, who came at last very late with a garland on
his head, and begged them to put off their debate till the next day.
"To-day," said he, "I am not at leisure, as I have just offered a
sacrifice, and am about to entertain some strangers at dinner." The
Athenians laughed at his assurance, and broke up the assembly.

VIII. However, on this occasion, by good fortune and good generalship,
with the help of Demosthenes, he brought home prisoners all those
Spartans who had not fallen in the battle, within the time which he
had appointed. This was a great reproach to Nikias. It seemed worse
even than losing his shield in battle that he should through sheer
cowardice and fear of failure give up his office of general, and give
his personal enemy such an opportunity of exalting himself at his
expense, depriving himself voluntarily of his honourable charge.
Aristophanes sneers at him in his play of the 'Birds,' where he says:

    "We must not now, like Nikias, delay,
    And see the time for action pass away."

And again in the play of the 'Farmers,' where this dialogue occurs:

    "A. I want to till my farm.
     B.           And wherefore no?
     A. 'Tis you Athenians will not let me go;
        A thousand drachmas I would give, to be
        From office in the state for ever free.
     B. Your offer we accept. The state will have
        Two thousand, with what Nikias just gave."

Moreover, Nikias did Athens much harm by permitting Kleon to attain
to such a height of power and reputation, which gave him such
exaggerated confidence in himself that he grew quite unmanageable, and
caused many terrible disasters, by which Nikias suffered as much as
any man. Kleon also was the first to break through the decorum
observed by former public speakers, by shouting, throwing back his
cloak, slapping his thigh, and walking up and down while speaking,
which led to the total disregard of decency and good manners among
public speakers, and eventually was the ruin of the state.

IX. About this time Alkibiades began to gain credit in Athens as a
public speaker, less licentious than Kleon, and like the soil of Egypt
described by Homer, which bears

     "A mingled crop of good and bad alike."

Thus Alkibiades, with immense powers both for good and evil, produced
great changes in the affairs of Athens. Nikias, even if he had been
freed from the opposition of Kleon, could not now have quietly
consolidated the power of the state, for as soon as he had arranged
matters in a fair way to produce peace and quiet, Alkibiades, to
satisfy his own furious ambition, threw them again into confusion and
war. This was brought about by the following circumstances. The two
chief hindrances to peace were Kleon and Brasidas; as war concealed
the baseness of the former, and added to the glory of the latter.
Kleon was able to commit many crimes undetected, and Brasidas
performed many great exploits while the war lasted; wherefore, when
both of these men fell before the walls of Amphipolis, Nikias,
perceiving that the Spartans had long been desirous of peace, and that
the Athenians no longer hoped to gain anything by continuing the war,
and that both parties were weary of it, began to consider how he might
reconcile them, and also pacify all the other states of Greece, so as
to establish peace upon a durable and prosperous basis. At Athens, the
richer classes, the older men, and the country farmers all wished for
peace. By constantly arguing with the others he gradually made them
less eager for war, and at length was able to intimate to the Spartans
that there were good hopes of coming to terms. They willingly believed
him because of his high character for probity, and more especially
because he had shown great kindness to the Spartan prisoners taken at
Pylos. A truce for one year had already been arranged between them,
and during this they conversed freely with one another, and, enjoying
a life of leisure and freedom from the restraints and alarms of war,
began to long for an unbroken period of peace, and to sing:

     "My spear the spider's home shall be,"

remembering with pleasure the proverb that in time of peace men are
awakened, not by trumpets, but by crowing cocks. They railed at those
who said that it was fated that the war should last thrice nine years,
and, having thus accustomed themselves to discuss the whole question,
they proceeded to make peace, and thought that now they were indeed
free from all their troubles. The name of Nikias was now in every
man's mouth, and he was called the favourite of heaven, and the man
chosen by the gods for his piety to confer the greatest of blessings
upon the Greeks. For they regarded the peace as the work of Nikias,
just as the war had been the work of Perikles. The latter, they
thought, for no adequate reasons, had involved the Greeks in the
greatest miseries, while the former had relieved them of their
troubles by persuading them to become friends. For this reason this
peace is to this day called the peace of Nikias.

X. The terms of the peace were that each party should restore the
cities and territory which it had taken, and that it should be
determined by lot which side should restore its conquests first. We
are told by Theophrastus that Nikias, by means of bribery, arranged
that the lot should fall upon the Lacedæmonians to make restitution
first. When, however, the Corinthians and Bœotians, dissatisfied with
the whole transaction, seemed likely by their complaints and menaces
to rekindle the war, Nikias induced Athens and Sparta to confirm the
peace by entering upon an alliance, which enabled them to deal with
the malcontents with more authority, and give them more confidence in
one another.

All these transactions greatly displeased Alkibiades, who was
naturally disinclined to peace, and who hated the Lacedæmonians
because they paid their court to Nikias and disregarded him. For this
reason, Alkibiades from the very outset opposed the peace, but
ineffectually at first. When, however, he observed that the
Lacedæmonians were no longer regarded with favour by the Athenians,
and were thought to have wronged them by forming an alliance with the
Bœotians, and not restoring to Athens up the cities of Panaktus and
Amphipolis, he seized the opportunity of exciting the people by
exaggerated accounts of the misdeeds of the Lacedæmonians. Moreover he
prevailed upon the people of Argos to send ambassadors to Athens to
conclude an alliance. As, however, at the same time ambassadors, with
full powers to settle all matters in dispute, came from Lacedæmon, and
in a preliminary conference with the Senate were thought to have made
very reasonable and just proposals, Alkibiades, fearing that they
might create an equally favourable impression when they spoke before
the popular assembly, deceived them by solemnly declaring with an oath
that he would assist them in every way that he could, provided that
they would deny that they came with full powers to decide, saying that
by this means alone they would effect their purpose. The ambassadors
were deceived by his protestations, and, forsaking Nikias, relied
entirely upon him. Upon this Alkibiades brought them into the public
assembly, and there asked them if they came with full powers to treat.
When they said that they did not, he unexpectedly turned round upon
them, and calling both the Senate and the people to witness their
words, urged them to pay no attention to men who were such evident
liars, and who said one thing in one+ assembly and the opposite in
another. The ambassadors, as Alkibiades expected, were thunderstruck,
and Nikias could say nothing on their behalf. The people at once
called for the ambassadors from Argos to be brought before them, in
order to contract an alliance with that city, but an earthquake which
was felt at this moment greatly served Nikias's purpose by causing
the assembly to break up. With great difficulty, when the debate was
resumed on the following day, he prevailed upon the people to break
off the negotiations with Argos, and to send him as ambassador to
Sparta, promising that he would bring matters to a prosperous issue.
Accordingly he proceeded to Sparta, where he was treated with great
respect as a man of eminence and a friend of the Lacedæmonians, but
could effect nothing because of the preponderance of the party which
inclined to the Bœotian alliance. He was therefore forced to return
ingloriously, in great fear of the anger of the Athenians, who had
been persuaded by him to deliver up so many and such important
prisoners to the Lacedæmonians without receiving any equivalent. For
the prisoners taken at Pylos were men of the first families in Sparta,
and related to the most powerful statesmen there. The Athenians,
however, did not show their dissatisfaction with Nikias by any harsh
measures, but they elected Alkibiades general, and they entered into a
treaty of alliance with the Argives, and also with the states of Elis
and Mantinea, which had revolted from the Lacedæmonians, while they
sent out privateers to Pylos to plunder the Lacedæmonian coasts in the
neighbourhood of that fortress. These measures soon produced a renewal
of the war.

XI. As the quarrel between Nikias and Alkibiades had now reached such
a pitch, it was decided that the remedy of ostracism must be applied
to them. By this from time to time the people of Athens were wont to
banish for ten years any citizen whose renown or wealth rendered him
dangerous to the state. Great excitement was caused by this measure,
as one or the other must be utterly ruined by its application. The
Athenians were disgusted by the licentiousness of Alkibiades, and
feared his reckless daring, as has been explained at greater length in
his Life, while Nikias was disliked because of his great wealth and
his reserved and unpopular mode of life. Moreover he had frequently
offended the people by acting in direct opposition to their wishes,
forcing them in spite of themselves to do what was best for them. On
the one side were arrayed the young men and those who wished for war,
and on the other the older men and the party of peace, who would be
sure to vote respectively, one for the banishment of Nikias, the other
for that of Alkibiades. Now

     "In revolutions bad men rise to fame,"

and it appears that the violence of these factions at Athens gave an
opportunity for the lowest and basest citizens to gain reputation.
Amongst these was one Hyperbolus, of the township of Peirithois, a man
of no ability or power, but who owed his elevation to sheer audacity,
and whose influence was felt to be a disgrace to Athens. This man, who
never dreamed that ostracism would be applied to him, as the pillory
would have been more suitable to his deserts, openly showed his
delight at the discord between Nikias and Alkibiades, and excited the
people to deal severely with them, because he hoped that if one of
them were to be banished, he might succeed to his place, and become a
match for the one who was left behind. But the parties which supported
Nikias and Alkibiades respectively made a secret compact with one
another to suppress this villain, and so arranged matters that neither
of their leaders, but Hyperbolus himself was banished by ostracism for
ten years. This transaction delighted and amused the people for the
moment, but they were afterwards grieved that they had abused this
safeguard of their constitution by applying it to an unworthy object,
as there was a kind of dignity about the punishment which they had
inflicted. Ostracism in the case of men like Thucydides and
Aristeides, was a punishment, but when applied to men like Hyperbolus,
it became an honour and mark of distinction, as though his crimes had
put him on a par with the leading spirits of the age. Plato, the comic
poet, wrote of him

    "Full worthy to be punished though he be,
    Yet ostracism's not for such as he."

The result was that no one was ever again ostracised at Athens, but
Hyperbolus was the last, as Hipparchus of Cholargus, who was some
relation to the despot of that name, was the first. Thus the ways of
fortune are inscrutable, and beyond our finding out. If Nikias had
undergone the trial of ostracism with Alkibiades, he would either
have driven him into banishment, and governed Athens well and wisely
during his absence, or he would himself have left the city, and
avoided the terrible disaster which ended his life, and would have
continued to enjoy the reputation of being an excellent general. I am
well aware that Theophrastus says that Hyperbolus was ostracised in
consequence of a quarrel of Alkibiades with Phæax and not with Nikias;
but my account agrees with that given by the best historians.

XII. When ambassadors came to Athens from Egesta and Leontini,
inviting the Athenians to commence a campaign in Sicily, Nikias
opposed the project, but was overruled by Alkibiades and the war
party. Before the assembly met to discuss the matter, men's heads were
completely turned with vague hopes of conquest, so that the youths in
the gymnasia, and the older men in their places of business or of
recreation, did nothing but sketch the outline of the island of Sicily
and of the adjacent seas and continents. They regarded Sicily not so
much as a prize to be won, but as a stepping-stone to greater
conquests, meaning from it to attack Carthage, and make themselves
masters of the Mediterranean sea as far as the Columns of Herakles.
Public opinion being thus biassed, Nikias could find few to help him
in opposing the scheme. The rich feared lest they should be thought to
wish to avoid the burden of fitting out ships and the other expensive
duties which they would be called upon to fulfil, and disappointed him
by remaining silent. Yet Nikias did not relax his exertions, but even
after the Athenian people had given their vote for the war, and had
elected him to the chief command, with Alkibiades and Lamachus for his
colleagues--even then, on the next meeting of the assembly, he made a
solemn appeal to them to desist, and at last accused Alkibiades of
involving the city in a terrible war in a remote country merely to
serve his own ambition and rapacity. However, he gained nothing by
this speech, for the Athenians thought that he would be the best man
to command the expedition because of his experience in war, and that
his caution would serve as a salutary check upon the rashness of
Alkibiades and the easy temper of Lamachus; so that, instead of
dissuading them his words rather confirmed them in their intention.
For Demostratus, who of all the popular orators was the most eager
promoter of the expedition, rose, and said that he would put an end to
these excuses of Nikias: and he prevailed upon the people to pass a
decree that the generals, both at home and in the field, should be
invested with absolute irresponsible power.

XIII. Yet it is said that the expedition met with great opposition
from the priests; but Alkibiades found certain soothsayers devoted to
his own interests, and quoted an ancient oracle which foretold that
the Athenians should one day win great glory in Sicily. Special
messengers also came from the shrine of Ammon,[1] bringing an oracular
response to the effect that the Athenians would take all the
Syracusans. Those oracles which made against the project, people dared
not mention, for fear of saying words of ill-omen. Yet even the most
obvious portents would not turn them from their purpose, such as the
mutilation of all the Hermæ, or statues of Hermes, in Athens, in a
single night, except only one, which is called the Hermes of
Andokides, which was erected by the tribe Ægeis, and stands before the
house in which Andokides lived at that time. A man likewise leaped
upon the altar of the Twelve Gods, sat astride upon it, and in that
posture mutilated himself with a sharp stone. At Delphi too there is a
golden statue of Pallas Athene standing upon a brazen palm tree, an
offering made by the city of Athens from the spoils taken in the
Persian war. This was for many days pecked at by crows, who at last
pecked off and cast upon the ground the golden fruit of the palm tree.
This was said to be merely a fable invented by the people of Delphi,
who were bribed by the Syracusans. Another oracle bade the Athenians
bring to Athens the priestess of Athena at Klazomenae, and accordingly
they sent for her. Her name happened to be Hesychia, signifying
Repose; and this is probably what the oracle meant that the Athenians
had better remain quiet. The astronomer, Meton, who was appointed to
some office in the army, either because of these adverse omens and
prophecies, or because he was convinced that the expedition would
miscarry, pretended to be mad and to set fire to his house. Some
historians relate that he did not feign madness, but that he burned
down his house one night, and next morning appeared in the
market-place in a miserable plight, and besought his countrymen that,
in consideration of the misfortune which had befallen him, they would
allow his son, who was about to sail for Sicily in command of a
trireme, to remain at home. We are told that Sokrates the philosopher
was warned by one of the signs from heaven which he so often received
that the expedition would be the ruin of the city. And many were
filled with consternation at the time fixed for the departure of the
armament. It was during the celebration of the Adonia, or mourning for
the death of Adonis, and in all parts of the city were to be seen
images of Adonis carried along with funeral rites, and women beating
their breasts, so that those who were superstitious enough to notice
such matters became alarmed for the fate of the armament, and foretold
that it would start forth gloriously, but would wither untimely away.

XIV. The conduct of Nikias in opposing the war when it was being
deliberated upon, and his steadfastness of mind in not being dazzled
by the hopes which were entertained of its success, or by the splendid
position which it offered himself, deserves the utmost praise; but
when, in spite of his exertions, he could not persuade the people to
desist from the war, or to remove him from the office of general, into
which he was as it were driven by main force, his excessive caution
and slowness became very much out of place. His childish regrets, his
looking back towards Athens, and his unreasonable delays disheartened
his colleagues, and spoiled the effect of the expedition, which ought
at once to have proceeded to act with vigour, and put its fortune to
the test. But although Lamachus begged him to sail at once to Syracuse
and fight a battle as near as possible to the city walls, while
Alkibiades urged him to detach the other Sicilian states from their
alliance with Syracuse, and then attack that place, he dispirited his
men by refusing to adopt either plan, and proposed to sail quietly
along the coast, displaying the fleet and army to the Sicilians, and
then, after affording some slight assistance to the people of Egesta,
to return home to Athens. Shortly after this, the Athenians sent for
Alkibiades to return home for his trial on a charge of treason, and
Nikias, who was nominally Lamachus's colleague, but really absolute,
proceeded to waste time in idle negotiations and languid manœuvres,
until his troops had quite lost the high spirits and hopes with which
they had arrived at Sicily; while the enemy, who were at first
terrified, began to recover their spirits, and despise the Athenians.
While Alkibiades was still with them they had sailed to Syracuse with
sixty ships, and while the rest remained in line of battle outside,
ten of these had entered the harbour to reconnoitre. These ships,
approaching the city, made a proclamation by a herald that they were
come to restore the people of Leontini to their city, and they also
captured a Syracusan vessel, in which they found tables on which were
written the names of all the inhabitants of Syracuse, according to
their tribes and houses. These tables were kept far away from the
city, in the temple of the Olympian Zeus, but at that time the
Syracusans had sent for them in order to discover the number of men
able to bear arms. These tables were now taken by the Athenians, and
carried to their general. When the soothsayers saw this roll of names,
they were much alarmed, fearing that this was the fulfilment of the
prophecy that the Athenians should capture all the Syracusans.
However, some declare that the prophecy was really fulfilled when the
Athenian Kallippus slew Dion, and captured Syracuse.

XV. Shortly after this, Alkibiades left Sicily, and the supreme
command devolved upon Nikias. For Lamachus, though a brave and honest
man, and one who always freely risked his life in battle, was but a
plain simple man, and was so excessively poor, that whenever he was
appointed general he was forced to ask the Athenians to advance him a
small sum of money to provide him with clothes and shoes. Now Nikias
was excessively haughty, both on account of his great wealth, and his
military renown. It is said that once when the generals were debating
some question together, Nikias bade Sophokles the poet give his
opinion first, because he was the eldest man present, to which
Sophokles answered, "I am the eldest, but you are the chief." Thus
when in Sicily he domineered over Lamachus, although the latter was a
far abler soldier, and by sailing about the coast at the point
furthest removed from the enemy, gave them confidence, which was
turned into contempt, when he was repulsed from Hybla, a little fort
in the interior. At last he returned to Katana, without having
effected anything, except the reduction of Hykkara, a town of the
aborigines, not of the Greeks, from which it is said the celebrated
courtezan Lais, then a very young girl, was carried away captive and
sent to Peloponnesus.

XVI. As the summer advanced, and Nikias remained inactive, the
Syracusans gained so much confidence that they called upon their
generals to lead them to the attack of the Athenian position at
Katana, since the Athenians did not dare approach Syracuse; while
Syracusan horsemen even went so far as to insult the Athenians in
their camp, riding up to ask if they were come to settle as peaceful
citizens in Katana, instead of restoring the Leontines. This
unexpected humiliation at length forced Nikias to proceed to Syracuse,
and he devised a stratagem by which he was able to approach that city
and pitch his camp before it unmolested.

He despatched to Syracuse a citizen of Katana, who informed the
Syracusans that if they desired to seize the camp and arms of the
Athenians, they would only have to appoint a day and to march in force
to Katana. Many of the Athenians, he said, spent all their time within
the walls of Katana, and it would be easy for the Syracusan party
there to close the gates, assail the Athenians within, and set fire to
their ships. A numerous body of Kataneans, he added, were eager to
co-operate in the plan now proposed.

This was by far the ablest piece of strategy accomplished by Nikias
during all the time that he remained in Sicily. The Syracusans were
induced to march out their entire force, leaving their city with
scarcely any defenders. Meanwhile, Nikias sailed round from Katana,
took possession of the harbour, and encamped his forces on the
mainland in a position where he could not be attacked by the enemy's
cavalry. When the Syracusan army returned from Katana, he marched out
the Athenians and defeated them, but with little loss on their side,
as their cavalry covered their retreat. Nikias now broke down the
bridges over the river Anapus, which gave occasion to Hermokrates to
say, when he was making a speech to encourage the Syracusans, that it
was a ridiculous thing for Nikias to try to avoid fighting, as though
it were not for the express purpose of fighting that he had been sent
thither. But in spite of all that Hermokrates could say, the
Syracusans were very much cast down and disheartened. Instead of the
fifteen generals who usually commanded their troops they chose three,
upon whom they conferred absolute powers, and swore a solemn oath that
they would leave them unfettered in the exercise of those powers.

The Athenians were very anxious to occupy the temple of Olympian Zeus,
which was near their camp, and full of offerings of gold and silver.
Nikias, however, purposely delayed the attack until a force was sent
from Syracuse to defend the temple. He thought that if the soldiers
did succeed in plundering it, the state would be none the better for
it, and he himself would have to bear all the blame of sacrilege.

Nikias made no use of his boasted victory, and after a short time drew
off his forces to Naxos, where he passed the winter, expending an
enormous sum of money for the maintenance of so large a force, and
effecting little or nothing except the reduction of a few disorderly
tribes in the interior. The Syracusans now took heart again, marched
into the Katanean territory and laid it waste, and attempted to burn
the camp of the Athenians. Upon this all men blamed Nikias for
deliberating and taking precautions until the time for action was gone
by. No one could find any fault with him when he was actually
fighting; but though a bold and energetic man in action, he was slow
to form plans and begin an enterprise.

XVII. Thus when he did at length return to Syracuse, he managed the
operation so swiftly and so skilfully that he disembarked his troops
at Thapsus before the enemy were aware of his approach, took Epipolæ
by surprise, took prisoners three hundred of the force of picked men
who endeavoured to recapture that fort, and routed the Syracusan
cavalry, which had hitherto been supposed to be invincible. Moreover,
what chiefly terrified the Sicilians, and seemed wonderful to all
Greeks, was the speed with which he built a wall round Syracuse, a
city quite as large as Athens itself, but one which is much more
difficult to invest completely, because of the sea being so near to
it, and the rough ground and marshes by which it is surrounded on the
land side. Yet he all but succeeded in accomplishing this feat,
although he was not in a condition of body to superintend such works
personally, for he suffered greatly from a disease of the kidneys, to
which we must attribute whatever was left undone by his army. For my
own part I feel great admiration for the diligence and skill of the
general, and for the bravery of the soldiers, which enabled them to
gain such successes. The poet Euripides, after their defeat and utter
overthrow wrote this elegy upon them:

    "Eight times they beat the Syracusan host,
    Before the gods themselves declared them lost."

Indeed, they beat the Syracusans far more than eight times, before the
gods turned against the Athenians and dashed them to the ground when
at the height of their pride.

XVIII. Nikias was present, in spite of his sufferings, at most of
these actions; but when his disease grew worse, he was forced to stay
in the camp with a small guard, while Lamachus took the command of the
army, and fought a battle with the Syracusans, who were endeavouring
to build a counter-wall which would obstruct the Athenians in building
their wall of circumvallation. The Athenians were victorious, but
followed up their success in such a disorderly manner that Lamachus
was left alone and exposed to the attacks of the Syracusan cavalry. He
at once challenged their leader, a brave man named Kallimachus, to
single combat, and both received and inflicted a mortal wound. His
dead body and arms fell into the hands of the Syracusans, who at once
charged up to the Athenian walls, where Nikias lay helpless. The
extremity of the danger roused him, and he ordered his attendants to
set fire to a quantity of timber which had been brought thither to
construct military engines, and to some of the engines themselves.
This desperate expedient checked the Syracusans, and saved Nikias and
the Athenians; for the rest of the Syracusan forces on perceiving so
great a body of flame returned in haste to their city.

This affair left Nikias in sole command, and he had great hopes of
taking the place; for many cities in Sicily had formed alliances with
him, ships laden with corn kept arriving to supply his camp, and all
began to be eager to be on his side, and to share in the fruits of his
success. The Syracusans themselves sent to propose terms of peace, for
they despaired of being able to defend their city any longer against
him. At this time Gylippus too, a Lacedæmonian who was sent to assist
them, heard during his voyage that they were completely enclosed and
reduced to great straits, but held on his voyage notwithstanding, in
order that even if, as he imagined, all Sicily had fallen into the
hands of the Athenians, he might at any rate defend the Greek cities
in Italy from sharing its fate. The air indeed was full of rumours
that the Athenians were carrying all before them, and that the good
fortune and skill of their general rendered him invincible. Even
Nikias himself was so elated by his apparent good fortune, that he
forgot his wonted prudence, and imagining from the secret intelligence
which he had from his friends within Syracuse that it was on the point
of surrender, neglected Gylippus altogether, and kept so bad a watch
at the straits of Messina with his fleet, that Gylippus managed to
cross there and land in Sicily. Here he at once proceeded to gather an
army together, but in a quarter of the island far away from Syracuse,
so that the people of Syracuse knew nothing of his arrival. They even
appointed a day for the public assembly to meet and discuss terms of
surrender with Nikias, and were about to attend it, as they thought
that it would be best for them to come to terms before the city was
quite surrounded by the wall of the Athenians. There was now only a
very small portion of this left to be finished, and all the materials
for building it were collected on the spot.

XIX. At this crisis there arrived at Syracuse Gongylus, a Corinthian,
in one trireme. All crowded round him, to hear what news he brought.
He informed them that Gylippus would soon come to their aid by land,
and that other triremes besides his own were on their way by sea. This
intelligence was scarcely believed, until it was confirmed by a
message from Gylippus himself, bidding them march out and meet him.
They now took courage and prepared for battle. Gylippus marched into
the town, and at once led the Syracusans out to attack the Athenians.
When Nikias had likewise brought his army out of their camp, Gylippus
halted his men, and sent a herald to offer them an armistice for five
days, on condition that they would collect their effects and withdraw
from Sicily. Nikias disdained to answer this insulting message; but
some of his soldiers jeeringly enquired whether the presence of one
Spartan cloak and staff had all at once made the Syracusans so strong
that they could despise the Athenians, who used to keep three hundred
such men, stronger than Gylippus and with longer hair, locked up in
prison, and feared them so little that they delivered them up to the
Lacedæmonians again. Timæus says that the Sicilian Greeks despised
Gylippus for his avaricious and contemptible character, and that when
they first saw him, they ridiculed his long hair and Spartan cloak.
Afterwards, however, he tells us that as soon as Gylippus appeared
they flocked round him as small birds flock round an owl, and were
eager to take service under him. This indeed is the more probable
story; for they rallied round him, regarding his cloak and staff to be
the symbols of the authority of Sparta. And not only Thucydides, but
Philistus, a Syracusan citizen by birth, who was an eye-witness of the
whole campaign, tells us that nothing could have been done without
Gylippus. In the first battle after his arrival, the Athenians were
victorious, and slew some few Syracusans, amongst whom was the
Corinthian Gongylus, but on the following day Gylippus displayed the
qualities of a true general. He used the same arms, horses, and ground
as before, but he dealt with them so differently that he defeated the
Athenians. Checking the Syracusans, who wished to chase them back to
their camp, he ordered them to use the stones and timber which had
been collected by the Athenians, to build a counter-wall, reaching
beyond the line of circumvallation, so that the Athenians could no
longer hope to surround the city. And now the Syracusans, taking fresh
courage, began to man their ships of war, and to cut off the
stragglers with their cavalry. Gylippus personally visited many of the
Greek cities in Sicily, all of whom eagerly promised their aid, and
furnished him with troops; so that Nikias, perceiving that he was
losing ground, relapsed into his former desponding condition, and
wrote a despatch to Athens, bidding the people either send out another
armament, or let the one now in Sicily return to Athens, and
especially beseeching them to relieve him from his command, for which
he was incapacitated by disease.

XX. The Athenians had long before proposed to send out a reinforcement
to the army in Sicily, but as all had gone on prosperously, the
enemies of Nikias had contrived to put it off. Now, however, they were
eager to send him assistance. It was arranged that Demosthenes should
employ himself actively in getting ready a large force, to go to
reinforce Nikias in the early spring, while Eurymedon, although it was
winter, started immediately with a supply of money, and with a decree
naming Euthydemus and Menander, officers already serving in his army,
to be joint commanders along with him. Meanwhile, Nikias was suddenly
attacked by the Syracusans both by sea and land. His ships were at
first thrown into confusion, but rallied and sank many of the enemy,
or forced them to run on shore; but on land Gylippus managed at the
same time to surprise the fort of Plemmyrium, where there was a
magazine of naval stores and war material of all kinds. A considerable
number of the garrison, also, were either slain or taken prisoners;
but the most serious result was the stoppage of Nikias's supplies,
which heretofore had been easily and quickly brought through the Great
Harbour, while it remained in the hands of the Athenians, but which
now could not reach his camp by sea without a convoy and a battle.[2]
Moreover, the Syracusan fleet had not been defeated by any superiority
of force of the Athenians, but by the disorder into which it had been
thrown by pursuing the enemy. They therefore determined to renew the
conflict with better success.

Nikias, on his part, was unwilling to fight a second time, thinking it
was folly to fight with a diminished and disheartened force when he
knew that Demosthenes was hurrying to his aid with a large and
unbroken armament. However, Menander and Euthydemus, the newly-elected
generals, were eager to distinguish themselves by performing some
brilliant action before the arrival of Demosthenes, and to eclipse the
fame of Nikias himself. The pretext they used was the glory of Athens,
which they said would be dishonoured for ever if they should now
appear afraid to accept the Syracusans' offer of battle. The battle
was fought: and the Athenian left wing, we are told by Thucydides, was
utterly defeated by the skilful tactics of the Corinthian steersman
Aristion. Many Athenians perished, and Nikias was greatly
disheartened, for he had now proved unfortunate both when sole
commander and when acting with colleagues.

XXI. Matters were in this posture when Demosthenes was descried in the
offing, approaching with a splendid armament which struck terror into
the hearts of the enemy. His fleet consisted of seventy-three ships,
on board of which were five thousand heavy-armed troops, and three
thousand javelin men, archers, and slingers. The glittering arms of
the troops, the flaunting banners of the ships of war, and the music
of the flutes to which the rowers kept time with their oars, made a
gallant display, which delighted the Athenians as much as it depressed
the Syracusans. These latter, indeed, were struck with dismay, and
thought that their last victory had been won in vain, and that they
were labouring to no purpose against a foe whose ranks were
continually reinforced.

Nikias was not long allowed to feast his eyes on this welcome
spectacle undisturbed. Demosthenes, as soon as he landed, insisted on
the necessity of instantly attacking Syracuse, and putting an end to
the siege, either by capturing the place, or by returning at once to
Athens in case of failure. Against this Nikias, who was alarmed at the
idea of such vigorous action, urged that it would be unwise to run
such a risk. Delay, he argued, favoured the besiegers more than the
besieged, as their resources must soon fail, in which case their
allies would desert them and they would again be brought to the
necessity of capitulating. Nikias adopted this view because of what he
heard from his secret correspondents within the city, who urged him to
continue the siege, telling him that already the Syracusans began to
feel the war too great a burden for them to support, and that Gylippus
was very unpopular among them, so that in a short time they would
utterly refuse to hold out any longer, and would come to terms with
the Athenians. Nikias could only hint at these secret sources of
information, and so his counsels were thought by his colleagues to be
mere cowardice. They declared loudly that the original mistake was
about to be repeated, and the first terror-stricken impression of the
armament frittered away, until familiarity with the sight of it had
bred contempt in the breasts of their enemies. They therefore eagerly
seconded the proposal of Demosthenes, and forced Nikias, though sorely
against his will, to yield to their representations. Accordingly,
Demosthenes with the land force assaulted the outlying fort on the
high ground of Epipolæ by night, and took it by surprise, killing part
of its garrison and putting the remainder to flight. He did not halt
there, but followed up his success by marching further on towards the
city, until he was met by some Bœotian heavy-armed troops, who had
been the first to rally, and now in a compact mass met the Athenians
with their spears levelled, and with loud shouts forced them to give
way with severe loss. The whole Athenian army was by this thrown into
confusion and panic, as the fugitives broke the formation of those
troops who were still marching to the front, so that in some cases
they actually fought with one another, each believing the others to be
enemies. Thus the Athenians fell into sad disorder and ruin; for they
were unable to distinguish friends from foes in the uncertain light,
as the moon, now nearly setting, glanced upon spear-points and armour
without showing them clearly enough to enable men to see with whom
they had to deal. The moon was behind the backs of the Athenians: and
this circumstance was greatly against them, for it made it hard for
them to see the numbers of their own friends, but shone plainly on the
glittering shields of their antagonists, making them look taller and
more terrible than they were. Finally, attacked as they were on every
side, they gave way and fled. Some were slain by the enemy, some by
their own countrymen, and some were dashed to pieces by falling down
the precipices; while the rest, as they straggled about the country,
were cut off by the Syracusan cavalry. Two thousand men perished, and
of the survivors few brought back their arms.

XXII. Nikias, who had expected this reverse, now cast the blame of it
upon Demosthenes; and he, admitting his error, besought Nikias to
embark his army and sail away as quickly as possible, pointing out
that no further reinforcement could be hoped for, and that they could
not hope for success with the force now at their disposal. Even had
they been victorious, he argued, they had intended to leave their
present camp, which was unhealthy at all times, and was now in the hot
season becoming pestilential. The time was the beginning of autumn,
and many of the Athenians were sick, while all were disheartened.
Nikias, however, opposed the idea of retreat, not because he did not
fear the Syracusans, but because he feared the Athenians more, and the
treatment which as an unsuccessful general he would probably meet
with. He declared that he saw no reason for alarm, and that even if
there was, that he would rather perish by the hands of the enemy than
those of his countrymen. A very different sentiment to that which was
afterwards uttered by Leon the Byzantine, who said, "My countrymen, I
had rather be put to death by you than to be put to death together
with you."

With regard to the place to which it would be best for them to remove
their camp, that, Nikias said, was a question which they might take
time to discuss.

Demosthenes, seeing that Nikias was thus obstinate, and conscious that
his own project, when adopted, had led to a frightful disaster, ceased
pressing him to raise the siege, and gave the other generals to
understand that Nikias must have secret reasons, from his
correspondents within the city, which led him to persevere thus
obstinately in remaining where he was. This caused them also to
withdraw their objections to remaining; but when another army came to
assist the Syracusans, and the Athenians began to perish from malaria,
even Nikias himself agreed that it was time to retreat, and issued
orders to his men to hold themselves in readiness to embark.

XXIII. When all was ready, and the enemy off their guard, as they did
not expect the Athenians to retreat, an eclipse of the moon took
place, which greatly terrified Nikias and some others who, from
ignorance or superstition, were in the habit of taking account of such
phenomena. That the sun should be sometimes eclipsed even the vulgar
understood to be in some way due to the moon intercepting its light:
but what body could intercept the moon's light, so that suddenly the
full moon should pale its light and alter its colour, they could not
explain, but thought that it was a sinister omen and portended some
great calamity.

The treatise of Anaxagoras, the first writer who has clearly and
boldly explained the phases and eclipses of the moon, was then known
only to a few, and had not the credit of antiquity, while even those
who understood it were afraid to mention it to their most trusted
friends. Men at that time could not endure natural philosophers and
those whom they called in derision stargazers, but accused them of
degrading the movements of the heavenly bodies by attributing them to
necessary physical causes. They drove Protagoras into exile, and cast
Anaxagoras into prison, from whence he was with difficulty rescued by
Perikles; while Sokrates, who never took any part in these
speculations, was nevertheless put to death because he was a
philosopher. It was not until after the period of which I am writing
that the glorious works of Plato shed their light upon mankind,
proving that Nature obeys a higher and divine law, and removing the
reproach of impiety which used to attach to those who study these
matters, so that all men might thereafter investigate natural
phenomena unreproved. Indeed, Plato's companion Dion, although the
moon was eclipsed when he was starting from the island of Zakynthus to
attack the despot Dionysius, was not in the least disturbed by the
omen, but sailed to Syracuse and drove out the despot. Nikias at this
time was without a competent soothsayer, for his intimate friend,
Stilbides, who used to check a great deal of his superstition, died
shortly before this. Indeed, the omen, if rightly explained, as
Philochorus points out, is not a bad one but a very good one for men
who are meditating a retreat; for what men are forced to do by fear,
requires darkness to conceal it, and light is inimical to them.
Moreover men were only wont to wait three days after an eclipse of the
moon, or of the sun, as we learn from Autokleides in his book on
divination; but Nikias persuaded them to wait for another complete
circuit of the moon, because its face would not shine upon them
propitiously before that time after its defilement with the gross
earthy particles which had intercepted its rays.[3] XXIV. Nikias now
put all business aside, and kept offering sacrifices and taking omens,
until the enemy attacked him. Their infantry assailed the camp and
siege works, while their fleet surrounded the harbour, not in ships of
war; but the very boys and children embarked in what boats they could
find and jeered at the Athenians, challenging them to come out and
fight. One of these boys, named Herakleides, the son of noble parents,
ventured too far, and was captured by an Athenian ship. His uncle
Pollichus, fearing for his safety, at once advanced with ten triremes
which were under his command; and this movement brought forward the
rest of the Syracusan fleet to support him. An obstinate battle now
took place, in which the Syracusans were victorious, and many of the
Athenians perished, amongst whom was their admiral Eurymedon. And now
the Athenians refused to remain before Syracuse any longer, and called
upon their generals to lead them away by land, for the Syracusans
after their victory had at once blockaded the entrance to the harbour,
so that no passage was left. Nikias and the other generals refused to
agree to this proposal, as they thought it would be a pity to abandon
a fleet of so many transports, and nearly two hundred ships of war.
They placed the flower of the land force on board the ships, with the
best of the slingers and darters, and manned one hundred and ten
triremes, for they had not sufficient oars for a larger number.
Nikias now abandoned the great camp and walls of investment, which
reached as far as the temple of Herakles, and drew the army up on the
beach as spectators of the battle. Thus the Syracusan priests and
generals were able for the first time since the siege began to
sacrifice to Herakles, as they were wont to do, while the people were
manning their fleet.

XXV. The Syracusan soothsayers promised them the victory if they
awaited attack and did not begin the attack: for Herakles himself
never struck the first blow, but always waited for his enemies to
attack him. The sea-fight which now took place was the fiercest and
most obstinately contested of all those which took place throughout
the war, and its varying fortunes were shared with agonizing interest
by the Athenian army and the citizens on the walls of Syracuse, who
were able from their respective positions to overlook the whole battle
and watch the manœuvres of each ship. The Athenians were placed at a
great disadvantage by having all their ships collected into one mass,
where they were attacked from all sides by the lighter and more
manageable vessels of the enemy. The Syracusans also used stones as
missiles, which strike with equal effect, however they are thrown,
while the Athenians replied with volleys of arrows and javelins, whose
aim was often spoiled by the motion of the vessels, and which are
useless unless they fly with the point foremost. All these details had
been foreseen and taught to the Syracusans by Aristion the Corinthian
steersman, who fell in the moment of victory. The Athenians were
finally routed and driven ashore with great slaughter, and their
retreat by sea completely cut off. Knowing how difficult it would be
to make their way to any place of safety by land, they allowed
themselves to be so paralyzed by despair, that they let the Syracusans
tow away their ships as prizes, without making an effort to save them,
and actually neglected to ask for a truce for the burial of their
dead. They seemed to think that the case of the sick and wounded whom
they saw amongst them, and whom they must perforce abandon when they
left their camp, was even more pitiable than that of the floating
corpses, and they actually envied the lot of the slain, knowing well
that after a few more days of suffering they themselves were all
destined to share their fate.

XXVI. They were all eager to depart during the night which followed
this disastrous day; but Gylippus, perceiving that the people of
Syracuse were so given up to feasting and merry-making, celebrating
both their victory and the festival of their national hero Herakles,
to whom the day was sacred, that they could not be either forced or
persuaded into attempting to harass the enemy's retreat, sent some of
those men who had formerly been in correspondence with Nikias to tell
him not to attempt to retreat that night, as all the roads were
occupied by Syracusans lying in wait to attack him. Deceived by this
intelligence, Nikias waited to find what he feared in the night turned
into a reality on the following day. At daybreak the passes were
occupied by the Syracusans, who also threw up entrenchments at all the
places where rivers had to be forded, and broke all the bridges,
stationing their cavalry upon the level ground, so that the Athenians
could not advance a step without fighting. The Athenians remained for
all that day and the following night in their camp, and then set out,
with such weeping and lamentation that it seemed rather as if they
were leaving their native country than a hostile one, so distressed
were they to see the miseries of their friends and relatives, and of
the sick and wounded who were unable to accompany their march and had
to be left to their fate, while they themselves had a presentiment
that their present sufferings were nothing in comparison with those
which awaited them. Among all these piteous sights, Nikias himself
offered a glorious example. Worn out by disease, compelled by the
exigencies of the retreat to forego the medicines and treatment which
his condition required, he nevertheless, weak as he was, did more than
many strong men could do, while all his men knew well that he made
those efforts, not from any wish or hope to save his own life, but
that it was solely on their behalf that he did not give way to
despair. The tears and lamentations of the rest were prompted by their
own private sorrows and fears, but the only grief shown by Nikias was
that so splendid an expedition should have ended in such miserable
failure. Those who watched his noble bearing and remembered how
earnestly he had opposed the whole scheme, were filled with compassion
for his undeserved sufferings. They began to despair of the favour of
Heaven being shown to themselves, when they reflected that this man,
careful as he had always been to perform every religious duty, was now
no better off than the humblest or the most wicked soldier in his

XXVII. Nikias made heroic efforts by cheerful looks, encouraging
speeches, and personal appeals to his followers, to show himself
superior to fortune. Throughout the retreat, although for eight days
in succession he was constantly harassed by the attacks of the enemy,
he nevertheless kept the division under his command unbroken and
undefeated, until the other part of the army under Demosthenes was
forced to surrender, being completely surrounded in an enclosed
olive-ground, the property of Polyzelus, brother of the despot Gelon.
Demosthenes himself drew his sword and stabbed himself, but not
mortally, for the Syracusans quickly interposed and forced him to
desist. When the Syracusans told Nikias of this disaster, and allowed
him to send horsemen to convince him of its truth, he proposed terms
to Gylippus, which were that the Athenians should be allowed to leave
Sicily, on condition of the repayment of the whole expenses of the
war, for which he offered to give hostages. These terms were refused,
and the enemy with insulting cries and threats proceeded to shoot with
missiles of all kinds at the Athenians, who were now completely
without food or drink. Yet Nikias prevailed upon them to hold out
during that night, and on the following day he led them, still under
fire from the enemy, across the plain leading to the river Asinarus.
There some were forced into the stream by the enemy, while others cast
themselves in to quench their thirst. A most dreadful slaughter now
took place, the Athenians being wild with thirst, and the Syracusans
killing them as they drank, until Nikias surrendered himself to
Gylippus, saying, "I beseech you, now that you are victorious, to show
some mercy, not to me, but to the Athenian troops. Consider how
changeful is the fortune of war, and how gently the Athenians dealt
with your men in their hour of victory."

Gylippus was visibly affected by the words, and by the sight of
Nikias; for he knew how well the Spartan prisoners had been treated by
him, when the peace was made with Athens; moreover, he thought that it
would be a great honour to him if he could carry home the enemy's
commander-in-chief as a prisoner. He received Nikias with kindness,
and gave orders to take the rest of the Athenians alive. It was long,
however, before these orders were understood and obeyed, so that more
Athenians were slain than survived, although many were spared by the
Syracusans in order that they might be sold for slaves.

The prisoners were now assembled together, and their arms and armour
hung upon the trees by the river side, as a trophy of the victory. The
victors next crowned themselves with garlands, decorated their horses,
cut off the manes and tails of the captured horses, and marched back
into their own city, having by their courage and skill won the most
complete victory ever gained by one Greek state over another.

XXVIII. At a public assembly of the Syracusans and their allies which
was shortly afterwards held, the orator Eurykles proposed that the day
on which Nikias was taken should be kept as a festival for ever, upon
which no work should be done, and sacrifice should be offered to the
gods, and that the feast should be called the Asinaria, from the name
of the river where the victory was won. The day was the twenty-sixth
of the Dorian month Karneius, which the Athenians call Metageitnion
(September 21st). Furthermore, he proposed that the Athenian slaves
and allies should be sold, that the Athenians themselves, with what
native Sicilians had joined them, should be confined in the stone
quarries within the city of Syracuse, and that their generals should
be put to death.

These propositions wore accepted by the Syracusans, who treated
Hermokrates with contempt when he urged that to be merciful in victory
would be more honourable to them than the victory itself. Gylippus
too, when he begged that he might carry the Athenian generals alive to
Sparta, was shamefully insulted by the excited Syracusans, who had
long disliked the irritating Spartan airs of superiority natural to
Gylippus, and now, flushed with victory, no longer cared to conceal
their feelings. Timæus tells us that they accused him of avarice and
peculation, a hereditary vice, it appears, in his family since his
father Kleandrides was banished from Sparta for taking bribes, while
he himself afterwards stole thirty of the hundred talents which
Lysander sent home to Sparta, and hid them under the roof of his
house, but was informed against, and exiled in disgrace. This will be
found described at greater length in the Life of Lysander.

In his account of the death of Nikias and Demosthenes, Timæus does not
exactly follow the narrative of Thucydides and Philistus, as he
informs us that while the assembly was still sitting, Hermokrates sent
to their prison to inform them that they were condemned to death, and
to afford them the means of dying by their own hands, while the other
historians state that the Syracusans put them to death.[4] Be this as
it may, their dead bodies were exposed before the gates of Syracuse as
a spectacle for the citizens. I have heard also that at the present
day a shield is shown in one of the temples at Syracuse, which is said
to be that of Nikias, and which is beautifully adorned with woven
coverings of purple and gold.

XXIX. Of the Athenians, the most part perished in the stone quarries
of disease and insufficient food, for they received only a pint of
barley-meal and half-a-pint of water each day. Not a few, however,
were sold into slavery, being stolen for that purpose by Syracusans,
or having escaped disguised as slaves. The rest were at length branded
upon their foreheads with the figure of a horse, and sold into
slavery. Yet even in this extremity their well-bred and dignified
behaviour came to their aid; for they soon either obtained their
freedom, or gained the confidence and respect of their masters. Some
gained their freedom by their knowledge of Euripides. It appears that
the dramas of Euripides were especially popular in Sicily, but that
only a few fragments of his works had hitherto reached the Greek
cities in that island. We are told that many of these captives on
their return to Athens affectionately embraced Euripides, and told
him how some of them had been sold into slavery, but had been set free
after they had taught their masters as much of his poetry as they
could remember, while others, when wandering about the country as
fugitives after the battle, had obtained food and drink by reciting
passages from his plays. We need not then wonder at the tale of the
people of Kaunus, who, when a ship pursued by pirates was making for
their harbour at first refused to admit it, but afterwards enquired
whether any on board knew the plays of Euripides; and on hearing that
they did, allowed them to enter the harbour and save themselves.

XXX. At Athens the news of the catastrophe was at first disbelieved,
because of the unsatisfactory way in which it reached the city. A
stranger, it is said, disembarked at Peiræus, went into a barber's
shop, and began to converse about what had happened as upon a theme
which must be uppermost in every man's mind. The astonished barber,
hearing for the first time such fearful tidings, ran up to Athens to
communicate it to the archons, and to the public in the market-place.
All were shocked and astonished at hearing this, and the archons
immediately convoked the public assembly, and brought the barber
before it. When he was asked to explain from whom he had heard this
intelligence, as he could give no satisfactory account, he was
regarded as a disturber of the public tranquillity by fabricating idle
tales, and was even put to the torture. Soon, however, men arrived who
confirmed his tale, and described all the details of the catastrophe
as far as they had witnessed them. Then at last the countrymen of
Nikias believed, after his death, what he had so often foretold to
them during his life.


[Footnote 1: In North Africa, the modern oasis of Siwah.]

[Footnote 2: Plemmyrium on one side, and the city of Syracuse on the
other, command the entrance of the gulf known as the Great Harbour,
inside of which lay the Athenian fleet and camp.]

[Footnote 3: Grote.]

[Footnote 4: Grote, Part II. ch. lx, points out that there is no real
contradiction between the statement cited from Timæus, and the
accounts gives of the transaction by Thucydides and Philistus.]


I. Marcus Crassus[5] was the son of a father who had been censor, and
enjoyed a triumph; but he was brought up with his two brothers in a
small house. His brothers were married in the lifetime of their
parents, and all had a common table, which seems to have been the
chief reason that Crassus was a temperate and moderate man in his way
of living. Upon the death of one of his brothers, Crassus married the
widow,[6] and she became the mother of his children; for in these
matters also he lived as regular a life as any Roman. However, as he
grew older, he was charged with criminal intercourse with Licinia,[7]
one of the Vestal Virgins, who was brought to trial; the prosecutor
was one Plotinus. Licinia had a pleasant estate in the suburbs, which
Crassus wished to get at a small price, and with this view he was
continually about the woman and paying his court to her, which brought
on him the suspicion of a criminal intercourse; but he was acquitted
by the judices, being indebted in some degree to his love of money for
his acquittal from the charge of debauching the vestal. But he never
remitted his attentions to Licinia till he got possession of the

II. Now, the Romans say that the many good qualities of Crassus were
obscured by one vice, avarice; but the fact appears to be that one
vice, which was more predominant in his character than all the rest
hid his other vices. They allege, as the chief proof of his avarice,
the mode in which he got his money and the amount of his property.
Though he did not at first possess above three hundred talents, and
during his first consulship he dedicated the tenth part of his
property to Hercules,[8] and feasted the people, and gave every Roman
out of his own means enough to maintain him for three months; yet,
before the Parthian expedition, upon making an estimate of his
property, he found it amount to seven thousand one hundred talents.
The greatest part of this, if one must tell the truth, though it be a
scandalous story, he got together out of the fire and the war, making
the public misfortunes the source of his wealth; for, when Sulla took
the city, and sold the property of those whom he put to death,
considering it and calling it spoil, and wishing to attach the infamy
of the deed to as many of the most powerful men as he could, Crassus
was never tired of receiving or buying. Besides this, observing the
accidents that were indigenous and familiar at Rome, conflagrations,
and tumbling down of houses owing to their weight and crowded state,
he bought slaves, who were architects and builders. Having got these
slaves to the number of more than five hundred, it was his practice to
buy up houses on fire, and the houses which were adjoining to those on
fire; for the owners, owing to fear and uncertainty, would sell them
at a low price; and thus the greatest part of Rome fell into the hands
of Crassus: but, though he had so many artizans, he built no house
except his own; for he used to say that those who were fond of
building were ruined by themselves, without the aid of any opponent.
Though he had many silver mines, and much valuable land, and many
labourers on it, still one would suppose that all this was of little
value, compared with the value of his slaves: so many excellent slaves
he possessed,--readers, clerks, assayers of silver,[9] house-managers,
and table-servants; and he himself superintended their education, and
paid attention to it and taught them, and, in short, he considered
that a master was mainly concerned in looking after his slaves, who
were the living implements of domestic economy. And here Crassus was
right, if, as he used to say, it was his opinion that he ought to
effect everything by the instrumentality of slaves, and that he
himself should direct the slaves; for, we observe, that what is
economical with respect to things lifeless is political with respect
to men. But he was not right in thinking and saying that nobody was
rich who could not maintain an army out of his substance; for war
feeds not by a fixed allowance, according to Archidamus;[10] and,
consequently, the wealth that is required for war is unlimited; and
this opinion of Crassus was very different from the opinion of Marius;
for when Marius, after giving to each man fourteen jugera of land,
found that they wanted more, he said, "May there never be a Roman who
thinks that too little which is enough to maintain him."

III. Besides this, Crassus was hospitable to strangers, for his house
was open to all, and he used to lend money to his friends without
interest; but he would demand it back immediately on the expiration of
the time of the borrower, which made the gratuitous loan more
burdensome than heavy interest. In his entertainments the invitation
was usually to persons of the plebeian class, and general: and the
frugality of the banquet, which was accompanied with neatness and a
friendly welcome, made it more agreeable than a sumptuous feast. In
his literary pursuits he mainly studied oratory,[11] and that kind
which was of practical use; and, having attained an ability in
speaking equal to the first among the Romans, he surpassed in care and
labour those who had the greatest talents; for they say, there was no
case, however mean and contemptible, which he approached without
preparation; and often, when Pompeius, and Cæsar, and Cicero, were
unwilling to get up to speak, he would perform all the duties of an
advocate: and for this reason he became more popular, being considered
a careful man, and always ready to give his help. He pleased people,
also, by his friendly and affable manner in taking them by the hand,
and addressing them; for Crassus never met a Roman, however low and
humble his condition might be, without returning his salute,[12] and
addressing him by his name. He is also said to have been well versed
in history, and to have paid some attention to philosophy by studying
the writings of Aristoteles, in which he had for his teacher
Alexander, a man who gave a proof of his moderation and easy temper in
his intercourse with Crassus; for it was not easy to say whether he
was poorer when he became acquainted with Crassus, or after the
acquaintance was made. He was, indeed, the only friend of Crassus, who
always accompanied him when he travelled abroad; and he used to wear a
cloak,[13] lent him for the purpose, which on his return he was asked
to give back. Oh, the submission[14] of the man! for the poor fellow
did not consider poverty among the things that are indifferent. But
this belongs to a later period.

IV. When Marius and Cinna had got the upper hand, and it was soon
apparent that they would reinstate themselves in Rome, not for the
benefit of their country, but plainly for the destruction and ruin of
the nobles, those who were caught in the city were put to death: among
whom were the father and brother of Crassus. Crassus, being very
young, escaped immediate danger; but, seeing that he was hemmed in on
all sides, and hunted by the tyrants, he took with him three friends
and ten slaves; and, using wonderful expedition, made his escape to
Iberia, having been there before, when his father was Prætor,[15] and
having made himself friends. Finding all in great alarm and trembling
at the cruelty of Marius, as if he were close at hand, he did not
venture to make himself known, but sought refuge in a tract bordering
on the sea, belonging to Vibius Pacianus,[16] where he hid himself in
a large cave. He sent a slave to Vibius to sound his disposition; for
the provisions that Crassus brought with him were now exhausted. On
hearing the news, Vibius was pleased that Crassus had escaped; and
inquiring about the number of persons with him, and where the place
was, he did not go himself to see them, but he took his villicus near
the spot, and ordered him to have food daily prepared, and to carry it
and place it near the rock, and to go away without speaking a word,
and not to be curious about the matter, or make any inquiries; and he
gave him notice, that if he did meddle at all he should be put to
death, but if he faithfully helped in the matter he should have his
freedom. The cave is not far from the sea, and the precipices which
shut it in leave a small and hardly perceptible path[17] which leads
into the cave; but when you have entered, it opens to a wonderful
height, and spreads out wide, with recesses which open into one
another, and are of a large circuit. It is also neither without water
nor light: for a spring of the purest water oozes out at the base of
the precipice; and there are natural clefts about that part where the
rock closes, by which the external light is admitted, and in the
daytime the spot is fully illuminated. The air within is free from all
moisture caused by dropping, and is quite pure, owing to the
compactness of the rock, which diverts all the wet and droppings to
the spring.

V. While Crassus stayed in the cave, the slave came daily to bring
provisions; but he did not see the persons who were concealed, or know
who they were; though he was seen by them, inasmuch as they knew, and
watched the times of his coming. Now, the provision that was made for
their meals was ample enough even for luxury, and not merely
sufficient for their necessities. But Vibius determined to show
Crassus every kind of friendly attention; and it occurred to him to
consider the youth of Crassus, that he was a very young man, and that
provision should be made in some degree also for the pleasures
suitable to his age, and that merely to supply his wants would argue
that he was serving Crassus as little as he could, rather than with
hearty zeal; accordingly, he took with him two handsome female slaves,
and went down to the sea-coast. When he came to the place, he pointed
to the road that led up to it, and told them to go in boldly. Crassus,
seeing them approach, was afraid that the spot was known, and had been
discovered; and, accordingly, he asked them what they wanted, and who
they were. The women replied, as they had been instructed, that they
were looking for their master, who was concealed there; on which
Crassus perceived the joke which Vibius was playing off upon him, and
his kind attentions, and received the women; and they stayed with him
for the rest of the time, telling and reporting to Vibius what he
requested them. Fenestella[18] says, that he saw one of these slaves
when she was an old woman, and that he had often heard her mention
this, and tell the story with pleasure.

VI. In this way Crassus spent eight months in concealment; but as
soon as he heard of Cinna's end, he showed himself, and out of the
numbers that flocked to him he selected two thousand five hundred,
with whom he went round to the cities; and one city, Malaca,[19] he
plundered, according to the testimony of many authors, though they say
that he denied the fact, and contradicted those who affirmed it. After
this he got together some vessels, and crossed over to Libya, to
Metellus Pius,[20] a man of reputation who had collected a force by no
means contemptible. But he stayed no long time there; for he
quarrelled with Metellus, and then set out to join Sulla, by whom he
was treated with particular respect. When Sulla had passed over the
sea to Italy, he wished all the young men who were with him to aid him
actively, and he appointed them to different duties. Crassus, on being
sent into the country of the Marsi to raise troops, asked for a guard,
because the road lay through a tract which was occupied by the enemy;
Sulla replied to him in passion and with vehemence, "I give thee as
guards thy father, thy brother, thy friends, thy kinsmen, who were cut
off illegally and wrongfully, and whose murderers I am now pursuing."
Stung by these words, and pricked on to the undertaking, Crassus
immediately set out, and, vigorously making his way through the enemy,
he got together a strong force, and showed himself active in the
battles of Sulla. The events of that war, it is said, first excited
him to rivalry and competition with Pompeius for distinction. Pompeius
was younger than Crassus, and his father had a bad repute at Rome, and
had been bitterly hated by the citizens; but still Pompeius shone
conspicuous in the events of that period and proved himself to be a
great man, so that Sulla showed him marks of respect which he did not
very often show to others of more advanced years and of his own rank,
by rising from his seat when Pompeius approached, and uncovering his
head, and addressing him by the title of Imperator. All this set
Crassus in a flame, and goaded him, inasmuch as he was thus slighted
in comparison with Pompeius; and with good reason; Crassus was
deficient in experience, and the credit that he got by his military
exploits was lost by his innate vices,--love of gain and meanness;
for, upon taking Tudertia,[21] a city of the Umbri, it was suspected
that he appropriated to himself most of the spoil, and this was made a
matter of charge against him to Sulla. However, in the battle near
Rome,[22] which was the greatest in all the war, and the last, Sulla
was defeated, the soldiers under his command being put to flight, and
some of them trampled down in the pursuit: Crassus, who commanded the
right wing, was victorious, and, after continuing the pursuit till
nightfall, he sent to Sulla to ask for something for his soldiers to
eat, and to report his success. But, during the proscriptions and
confiscations, on the other hand, he got a bad name, by buying at low
prices large properties, and asking for grants. It is said that, in
the country of the Bruttii, he also proscribed a person, not pursuant
to Sulla's orders, but merely to enrich himself thereby, and that, on
this account, Sulla, who disapproved of his conduct, never employed
him again in any public business. However, Crassus was most expert in
gaining over everybody by flattery; and, on the other hand, he was
easily taken in by flattery from any person. It is further mentioned
as a peculiarity in his character, that, though very greedy of
gain,[23] he hated and abused those most who were like himself.

VII. But Crassus was most annoyed at the military success of Pompeius,
and his enjoying a triumph before he became a senator, and being
called by the citizens Magnus, which means Great. On one occasion,
when somebody observed that Pompeius the Great was approaching,
Crassus smiled, and asked, How great he was? But, as Crassus despaired
of equalling Pompeius in military reputation, he entered upon a
political career, and, by his activity, by pleading in the courts, and
lending money, and by canvassing for candidates, and subjecting
himself to all kinds of scrutiny in conjunction with those who wanted
anything of the people, he acquired a power and reputation equal to
what Pompeius had got by his many and great military services. And the
result to each of them was something unusual; for, when Pompeius was
absent from Rome, his name and his influence in the State, by reason
of his military exploits, was superior to that of Crassus; but when
Pompeius was at Rome, he often fell short of Crassus in influence, for
his haughty temper and habitual pride made him avoid crowds and retire
from the Forum, and seldom give his aid to those who sought it, and
then not readily; his object being to keep his power at a higher
pitch, by exercising it only on his own behalf. But Crassus was always
ready to make himself useful, and he did not keep himself retired, nor
was he difficult of access, but he was always busy in everything that
was going on, and by the general kindness of his behaviour he got the
advantage over the proud bearing of Pompeius. In personal dignity, in
persuasive speech, and attractive expression of countenance it is said
they were both equally fortunate. However, this rivalry did not hurry
Crassus into any personal enmity or ill-will, and though, he was
annoyed at Pompeius and Cæsar receiving greater honour than himself,
he never allowed this jealous feeling to be associated with any
hostility or ill disposition. It is true that when Cæsar was taken and
detained by the pirates, he cried out, "What pleasure you will have,
Crassus, when you hear of my capture!" But afterwards, at least, they
were on friendly terms, and, when Cæsar was going to Iberia, as
prætor,[24] and had no money in consequence of his creditors having
come upon him and seizing all his outfit, Crassus did not leave him in
this difficulty, but got him released, by becoming security for him to
the amount of eight hundred and thirty talents. When all Rome became
divided into three parties,--that of Pompeius, Cæsar and
Crassus,--(for Cato[25] had more reputation than power, and was more
admired than followed), the sober and conservative part of the
citizens adhered to Pompeius; the violent and those who were lightly
moved, were led by the hopes that they had from Cæsar; Crassus, by
keeping a middle position, used both parties for his purposes, and, as
he very often changed in his political views, he was neither a firm
friend nor an irreconcilable enemy, but he would readily give up
either his friendship or his enmity on calculation of interest; so
that within a short interval, he often came forward to speak both for
and against the same men and the same measures. He had also great
influence, both because he was liked and feared, but mainly because he
was feared. Accordingly Sicinius,[26] who was the most violent in his
attacks on the magistrates and popular leaders of the day, in reply to
one who asked, "Why Crassus was the only person whom he did not worry,
and why he let him alone?" said, "That he had hay on his horn:" now,
the Romans were accustomed to tie some hay round the horn of an ox
that butted, as a warning to those who might meet it.

VIII. The insurrection of the gladiators and their devastation of
Italy, which is generally called the war of Spartacus,[27] originated
as follows:--One Lentulus Batiates kept gladiators in Capua, of whom
the majority, who were Gauls and Thracians, had been closely confined,
not for any misbehaviour on their part, but through the villainy of
their purchaser, for the purpose of fighting in the games. Two hundred
of these resolved to make their escape; but their design being
betrayed, those who had notice of the discovery, and succeeded in
getting away, to the number of seventy-eight, took knives and spits
out of a cook's shop, and sallied out. Meeting on the way with some
waggons that were conveying gladiators' arms to another city, they
plundered the waggons, and armed themselves. Seizing on a strong
position, they chose three leaders, of whom the first was Spartacus, a
Thracian of nomadic race, a man not only of great courage and
strength, but, in judgment and mildness of character, superior to his
condition, and more like a Greek than one would expect from his
nation. They say that when Spartacus was first taken to Rome to be
sold, a snake was seen folded over his face while he was sleeping, and
a woman, of the same tribe with Spartacus, who was skilled in
divination, and possessed by the mysterious rites of Dionysus,
declared that this was a sign of a great and formidable power which
would attend him to a happy termination. This woman was at that time
cohabiting with Spartacus, and she made her escape with him.

IX. The gladiators began by repelling those who came against them from
Capua and getting a stock of military weapons, for which they gladly
exchanged their gladiators' arms, which they threw away as a badge of
dishonour, and as barbaric. Clodius[28] the prætor was next sent
against them from Rome, with three thousand men, and he blockaded them
on a mountain which had only one ascent, and that was difficult and
narrow, and Clodius had possession of it; on all other sides there
were steep smooth-faced precipices. On the top of the hill there grew
a great quantity of wild vines, and the men of Spartacus cutting off
all the shoots that were adapted to their purpose, and, intertwining
them, made strong and long ladders, so that when fastened above, they
reached along the face of the precipice to the level ground, and they
all safely descended by them except one man, who stayed to take care
of the arms; and, when all the rest had descended, he let the arms
down, and, having done this, he got down safe himself. The Romans did
not know what was going on; and accordingly, when the gladiators
surrounded them, they were put in alarm by the surprise, and fled, on
which the enemy took their camp. Many of the herdsmen and shepherds in
those parts also joined the gladiators, men ever ready for a quarrel,
and light of foot, some of whom the gladiators armed, and others they
employed as scouts and light troops. Publius Barinus[29] the prætor
was next sent against them, whose legatus, one Furius, at the head of
two thousand soldiers, the gladiators engaged and put to flight.
Cossinus was then despatched, with a large force, to advise with
Barinus, and to be associated in the command; but Spartacus, watching
his opportunity, while Cossinus was bathing at Salenæ,[30] was very
near seizing him. Cossinus made his escape with great difficulty, and
Spartacus, seizing the baggage, closely followed up the pursuit, with
great slaughter of the Romans, and he took the camp. Cossinus also
fell. Spartacus, after defeating the prætor himself in many other
battles, and at last seizing his lictors and his horse, now became
great and formidable: but still he formed a just judgment of the state
of affairs and, not expecting to get the advantage over the power of
the Romans, he designed to lead his forces to the Alps; thinking that
it was advisable for them to cross the mountains and to go to their
several homes, some to Thrace and some to Gaul. But the gladiators
being strong in numbers, and confident, would not listen to him, and
they went about ravaging Italy. The Senate were now no longer troubled
merely at the humiliation and disgrace that they suffered by the
revolt; but, moved by fear and the danger, they sent out both the
consuls[31] as to a war of the utmost difficulty and importance.
Gellius, suddenly falling on the Germans, who, by reason of their
arrogance and self-confidence, had separated from the troops of
Spartacus, destroyed the whole body; and after Lentulus had hemmed in
Spartacus with large armies, Spartacus, rushing upon them and joining
battle, defeated the legates and got all the baggage. Spartacus now
attempted to force his way towards the Alps; and Cassius[32] who "was
the governor of Gaul upon the Padus, met him with ten thousand men,
and a battle was fought, in which Cassius was defeated with great
lose, and with difficulty made his escape.

X. The Senate, on receiving this news, angrily bade the consuls keep
quiet, and they appointed Crassus to the command of the war, whose
reputation and popularity induced many of the nobles to serve under
him. Crassus took his station on the frontiers of Picenum, with the
view of waiting for Spartacus, who was moving in that direction; and
he sent Mummius, his legatus, at the head of two legions, to make a
circuit, and with orders to follow the enemy, but not to engage with
them, nor come to close quarters. But Mummius, as soon as he got what
he thought a favourable opportunity, fought a battle, and was
defeated; many of his men fell, and many, flying without their arms,
made their escape. Crassus received Mummius himself roughly, and
arming the soldiers again, he required of them security for their
arms, that they would keep them; and five hundred, who had been the
first to run, and had shown most cowardice, he distributed into fifty
decades,[33] and out of each decade he took one man, by lot, and put
him to death; thus inflicting on the soldiers this ancient mode of
punishment which had long fallen into disuse; for disgrace also is
added to the manner of death, and many things horrible and dreadful to
see accompany the punishment, in the presence of all the spectators.
After inflicting this punishment, he made his men again face about and
march against the enemy. Spartacus, however, avoided Crassus, and made
his way through Lucania to the sea, and, falling in with some Cilician
piratical vessels, in the Straits, he formed a design to seize Sicily,
and by throwing two thousand men into the island, to kindle again the
servile war there, the flames of which had not long since been
quenched, and required only a few sparks to set it again in a blaze.
The Cilicians[34] came to terms with Spartacus, and received his
presents; but they deceived him, and sailed off. Under these
circumstances, he marched back from the coast, and fixed his army in
the peninsula of the Rhegine territory. Crassus now came up, and
observing that the nature of the ground suggested what was to be done,
he resolved to build a wall across the isthmus, for the purpose of
keeping his soldiers employed, and cutting off the supplies of the
enemy. Though the undertaking was great and difficult, he accomplished
it, and completed the work, contrary to all expectation, in a short
time, by digging a ditch[35] from sea to sea, through the neck of
land, three hundred stadia in length, fifteen feet deep, and as many
wide; and above the ditch he raised a rampart of surprising height and
strength. At first Spartacus paid no attention to what was going on,
and treated it with contempt; but when forage began to fail, and he
wanted to advance further into the interior, he discovered the lines
of Crassus; and as there was nothing to be got in the peninsula,
taking advantage of a night when there was a fall of snow and a wintry
storm, he filled up a small part of the ditch with earth, and wood,
and the branches of trees, and so carried over a third part of his

XI. Now Crassus was afraid that Spartacus might form a design to march
against Rome; but he was encouraged by many of the followers of
Spartacus quitting their leader, in consequence of some disputes, and
encamping by themselves upon the banks of the lake Lucanis,[36] which
they say is subject to changes, at certain intervals becoming sweet,
and then again salt, and not potable. Crassus coming upon this band,
drove them from the lake; but he was prevented from cutting them to
pieces and pursuing them, by the sudden appearance of Spartacus, who
checked the flight. Crassus had, before this, written to the Senate,
to say that they ought to summon Lucullus[37] from Thrace, and
Pompeius from Iberia; but he now changed his mind, and made every
effort to put an end to the war before they arrived, knowing that the
success would be attributed to him who came last, and brought help,
and not to himself. Accordingly, he determined to attack first those
who had separated from the main body, and were carrying on the
campaign by themselves, under the command of Caius Cannicius and
Castus; and he dispatched six thousand men, with orders to occupy a
certain hill, and keep themselves concealed. The men of Crassus
endeavoured to escape notice by covering their helmets; but, being
seen by two women, who were sacrificing for the enemy, they would have
been in danger, if Crassus had not quickly appeared, and fought a
battle, the most severely contested of all in this war, in which he
destroyed twelve thousand three hundred men, of whom he found only two
wounded in the back: all the rest died in the ranks, fighting against
the Romans. After the defeat of this body, Spartacus retired to the
mountains of Petilia,[38] followed by Quintius,[39] one of the
generals of Crassus, and Scrofas, his quæstor, who hung close on his
rear. But, upon Spartacus facing about, the Romans were thrown into
disorderly flight, and made their escape, after having with difficulty
rescued their quæstor, who was wounded. This success was the ruin of
Spartacus, in consequence of the self-confidence which it infused into
the slaves: they would not now consent to avoid a battle, nor yet
would they obey their commanders, whom they surrounded, with arms in
their hands, on the march, and compelled to lead them back through
Lucania against the Romans, wherein they did the very thing that
Crassus desired; for it was reported that Pompeius was now
approaching, and there were not a few who openly said that the victory
in this war belonged to him; for he would fight as soon as he arrived,
and put an end to the campaign. While Crassus, therefore, who was
eager to decide the affair by a battle, and to fix his camp near the
enemy, was engaged in digging his trenches, the slaves came up to
them and attacked the men who were at work. As fresh men from both
sides kept coming up to help their comrades, Spartacus, seeing that he
must fight, arranged all his army in order of battle. When his horse
was brought to him, he drew his sword and said, that if he won the
battle he should have plenty of fine horses from the enemy, and if he
was defeated he should not want one; upon which he killed his horse,
and then he made his way towards Crassus himself, through many men,
and inflicting many wounds; but he did not succeed in reaching
Crassus, though he engaged with and killed two centurions. At last,
after those about him had fled, he kept his ground, and, being
surrounded by a great number, he fought till he was cut down. But,
though Crassus had been successful, and had displayed the skill of a
great general, and had exposed his person to danger, yet the credit of
the victory did not escape being appropriated to Pompeius; for those
who fled from the battle were destroyed by him, and Pompeius wrote to
the Senate that Crassus had defeated the slaves in the open field, but
he had cut up the war by the roots.[40] Now Pompeius had a splendid
triumph for his victory over Sertorius and his exploits in Iberia; but
Crassus did not venture to ask for the greater triumph; and even as to
the foot triumph called the ovation, which he did enjoy, it was
considered but a mean thing, and below his dignity that he had a
triumph for a servile war. But how the ovation differs from the other
triumph, and about the name, I have spoken in the 'Life of
Marcellus.'[41] XII. After these events, Pompeius was forthwith
invited to the consulship,[42] and, though Crassus had hopes of
becoming his colleague, still he did not hesitate to solicit the
assistance of Pompeius. Pompeius gladly listened to his proposal, for
he was desirous in any way always to have Crassus his debtor for some
obligation, and he actively exerted himself on behalf of Crassus; and
finally he said, in his address to the public assembly, that he should
feel no less grateful for the return of Crassus as his colleague than
for his own election. They did not, however, continue in this harmony
after entering on their office, but they differed on almost every
subject, and quarrelled about everything, and by their disputes
rendered their consulship unfruitful in all political measures, and
ineffectual: however, Crassus made a great festival in honour of
Hercules, and feasted the people at ten thousand tables, and gave them
an allowance of corn for three months. It was at the close of their
consulship, when Pompeius and Crassus happened to be addressing the
public assembly, that a man, not of any distinction, a Roman eques, a
rustic in his mode of life, and one who did not meddle with public
affairs, Onatius Aurelius,[43] got up on the rostra, and, coming
forward, told a dream which he had had. "Jupiter," he said, "appeared
to me, and bade me tell the citizens not to let the consuls lay down
their office before they have become friends." Upon the man saying
this, and the assembly bidding the consuls be reconciled, Pompeius
stood silent; but Crassus offering his right hand first, said,
"Citizens, I do not consider that I am humbling myself or doing
anything unworthy of me when I make the advance towards good-will and
friendship to Pompeius, to whom you gave the name of Magnus before he
had a beard, and voted a triumph before he was a senator."

XIII. These were the things worthy of commemoration in the consulship
of Crassus. But his censorship[44] passed over altogether without
results, and without any active measures; for he neither revised the
senate, nor inspected the equites, nor made a census of the citizens,
though he had for his colleague Lutatius Catulus, the mildest of the
Romans. But it is said that Crassus designed a shameful and violent
measure, to make Egypt tributary to the Romans, and that Catulus
opposed him vigorously, on which a difference arising between them,
they voluntarily laid down their office. In the affair of
Catiline,[45] which was a serious matter, and one that came near
overthrowing Rome, some suspicion, it is true, attached to Crassus,
and a man came forward to name him as implicated in the conspiracy,
but nobody believed him. However, Cicero, in one of his orations,
evidently imputed to Crassus and Cæsar participation in the plot; but
this oration was not published till after the death of both of them.
But in the oration on his consulship, Cicero says that Crassus came to
him by night and brought a letter[46] which contained information on
the affair of Catiline, as if his object was to establish the truth of
the conspiracy. Now Crassus always hated Cicero for this, but his son
stood in the way of his doing Cicero any open injury. For
Publius,[47] who was fond of oratory and of improving himself, was
much attached to Cicero, and went so far as to change his dress when
Cicero did at the time of his trial, and he induced the other young
men to do the same. At last he prevailed upon his father, and
reconciled him to Cicero.

XIV. When Cæsar returned from his province,[48] he made preparations
to be a candidate for the consulship; but, observing that Crassus and
Pompeius were again at enmity, he did not choose by applying to one of
them for his help to have the other for his enemy, and he did not
think that he could succeed if neither of them assisted him.
Accordingly, he set about reconciling them, by continually urging upon
them, and showing that by their attempts to ruin one another they
would increase the power of the Ciceros, and Catuli, and Catos, who
would lose all their influence if they would unite their friends and
adherents, and so direct the administration with combined strength,
and one purpose. By persuasion and effecting a reconciliation, he
brought them together, and he formed out of the union of all three an
irresistible power by which he put down the Roman senate and the
people, though he did not make Pompeius and Crassus more powerful, one
through the other, but by means of the two he made himself most
powerful; for immediately on being supported by Pompeius and Crassus,
he was elected consul by a great majority. While Cæsar was ably
discharging the business of the consulship, Crassus and Pompeius, by
procuring for him the command of armies, and by delivering Gaul into
his hands, fixed him in a kind of acropolis, thinking that they should
administer the rest of the State as they mutually agreed, after
securing to Cæsar the authority which the lot had given him. Now
Pompeius did all this through unbounded love of power; but to the old
vice of Crassus, his avarice, there was now added a new passion,
ambition for trophies and triumphs excited by the great exploits of
Cæsar, since it was in this alone that he was Cæsar's inferior; for he
had the superiority in everything else; and his passion remitted not
nor diminished till it resulted in an inglorious death and public
misfortunes. Cæsar had come down from Gaul to the city of Luca, and
many of the Romans went to him there, and Pompeius and Crassus had
private conferences with him, in which they agreed to take affairs in
hand more vigorously, and to hold the whole power of the State at
their disposal, to which end Cæsar was to remain in his military
command, and Pompeius and Crassus were to have other provinces and
armies. To this object there was only one road, which was to ask for a
second consulship, and Cæsar was to assist them in their canvass by
writing to his friends and sending many of his soldiers to support
them at the comitia.

XV. As soon as Crassus and Pompeius[49] returned to Rome, suspicion
was excited, and there was much talk through the whole city that their
meeting had been held for no good. In the Senate Marcellinus and
Domitius asked Pompeius if he intended to be a candidate for the
consulship, to which Pompeius replied that perhaps he should, and
perhaps he should not; being asked again, he said that he was a
candidate for the votes of the good citizens, but not a candidate for
the votes of the bad. It was considered that Pompeius had made a
haughty and arrogant answer; but Crassus said, in a more modest tone,
that he would be a candidate, if it was for the interest of the State;
if it was not, he would decline. This encouraged certain persons to
become candidates, among whom was Domitius. However, when Pompeius
and Crassus had openly declared themselves candidates, the rest were
afraid and withdrew; but Domitius was encouraged by Cato, who was his
kinsman and friend, and stimulated and urged him to stick to his
hopes, with the view of defending the common liberties; he said "it
was not the consulship that Pompeius and Crassus wanted, but a
tyranny; that their conduct showed they were not asking for the
consulship, but aiming to seize on the provinces and the armies." By
such arguments, which were also his real opinions, Cato, all but by
force, brought Domitius to the Forum, and many sided with them. And
those who were surprised at the canvassing of Pompeius and Crassus
were no small number. "Why then do they want a second consulship? And
why do they wish to be colleagues again? And why will they not have
the consulship with other colleagues? There are many men among us who
are surely not unworthy to be colleagues with Crassus and Pompeius."
This alarmed the partizans of Pompeius, who now abstained from no
proceeding, however disorderly and violent; but, in addition to all
the rest, they placed a body of men to lie in wait and attack Domitius
as he was going down to the Forum, while it was still dark, with his
partizans, and they killed the man that held the light, and wounded
many, among whom was Cato. After putting the party of Domitius to
flight, and driving them back to the house,[50] Pompeius and Crassus
were proclaimed consuls. Shortly after, they again surrounded the
Senate-house with armed men, and, after driving Cato out of the Forum,
and killing some persons who opposed them, they procured another five
years[51] of administration to be added to Cæsar's term, and the two
provinces of Syria and Iberia to be given to them. When the lots were
cast, Crassus got Syria, and Pompeius had Iberia.

XVI. The result of the lot was not universally disliked; for the
majority wished Pompeius not to be far from the city, and Pompeius,
who was much attached to his wife,[52] intended to spend his time
chiefly in Rome. Crassus showed by his joy, immediately on the falling
out of the lot, that he considered no greater good fortune had ever
befallen him, and he could scarcely keep quiet before strangers and in
public; to his friends he uttered many foolish and puerile expressions
quite inconsistent with his years and temper, for he had never before
shown himself in the least degree a braggart or arrogant. But now,
being mightily elated, and his head completely turned, he was not for
making Syria or Palestine the limit of his victories; but, designing
to make the exploits of Lucullus against Tigranes, and those of
Pompeius against Mithridates appear mere child's play, he extended his
hopes as far as to the Bactrians, and the Indians, and the external
sea. And yet there was no mention of a Parthian war in the law[53]
that was drawn up on this occasion. But everybody knew that Crassus
was passionately bent on a Parthian war, and Cæsar wrote to him from
Gaul, approving of his design, and urging him to it. When it was known
that Ateius,[54] the tribune, intended to offer some opposition to his
leaving the city, and many persons joined him who complained that
Crassus was going to make war upon a people who were doing the Romans
no wrong, and had a treaty with them, Crassus in alarm prayed Pompeius
to accompany him, and escort him out of the city. Now, the reputation
of Pompeius with the multitude was great, and, by showing himself in
front of Crassus, with cheerful looks and countenance, he
tranquillized a numerous body of people who were prepared to obstruct
Crassus, and to raise a shout against him, so that they made way and
let him pass through them quietly. But Ateius met Crassus, and, first
of all, endeavoured to stop him by words, and he protested against his
marching out: in the next place, he ordered his attendant to lay hold
of Crassus, and to detain him; but, as the rest of the tribunes would
not allow this, the attendant quitted his hold of Crassus, and Ateius
running to the gate, placed there a burning brazier, and, as soon as
Crassus arrived, he threw incense and poured libations upon it, and,
at the same time, he denounced against Crassus curses, in themselves
dreadful and terrific, and, in addition thereto, he uttered the names
of certain awful and inauspicious deities. The Romans say that these
mysterious and ancient curses have great efficacy, that no man can
escape upon whom they are laid, and that he who utters them also has
an unlucky end, and, accordingly, they are not denounced either on
ordinary occasions, or by many persons. Ateius was blamed for letting
loose such imprecations and religious fears upon a State, on behalf of
which he was hostile to Crassus.

XVII. When Crassus arrived at Brundisium, though the sea was still
rough owing to the wintry weather, he would not wait, but he set sail,
and so lost many of his vessels. After getting together the remnant of
his forces, he marched through Galatia.[55] Finding King Deiotarus,
who was now a very old man, founding a new city, Crassus said
sarcastically, "King, you are beginning to build at the twelfth hour."
The Galatian, with a smile, replied, "You, too, Imperator, I observe,
are not very early with your Parthian expedition." Now Crassus was
past sixty, and he looked older than he was. On his arrival, matters
at first turned out fully equal to his expectation; for he easily
threw a bridge over the Euphrates, and got his army across safely, and
he also obtained possession of many cities in Mesopotamia which
surrendered. Before one of them, of which Apollonius was tyrant, he
lost a hundred men, upon which he brought his force against the place,
and, having got possession of it, he made plunder of all the property,
and sold the people: the Greeks called the city Zenodotia.[56] On the
capture of the city, Crassus allowed his soldiers to proclaim him
Imperator, wherein he greatly disgraced himself, and showed the
meanness of his spirit, and that he had no good hopes of greater
things, as he was content with so slight a success. Having put
garrisons in the cities that had surrendered, to the amount of seven
thousand infantry and a thousand cavalry, he retired to winter in
Syria, and there to await his son,[57] who was coming from Cæsar in
Gaul, with the decorations that he had gained by his valour, and with
a thousand picked horsemen. This seemed to be the first blunder of
Crassus, or at least, it was the greatest blunder that he committed
next to the expedition itself; for he ought to have advanced and to
have secured Babylon and Seleukeia,[58] two cities which were always
hostile to the Parthians; instead of which, he gave his enemies time
to make preparation. The next thing the people blamed was his waste of
time in Syria, which was employed more for purposes of money profit
than for military purposes; for he did not occupy himself in reviewing
the numbers of his troops, nor establishing games to keep the soldiers
in exercise, but he busied himself about estimating the revenues of
cities, and he was for many days with weights and scales in his hands
among the treasures of the goddess in Hierapolis,[59] and, after
requiring from the towns and princes contingents of men, he would
remit his requisitions for a sum of money; by all which he lost his
reputation, and fell into contempt. The first sign that happened to
him proceeded from this goddess herself, whom some consider to be
Aphrodite (Venus); and others Hera (Juno); others again believe her to
be the cause that has supplied from moisture the seeds for all things,
and nature, and the power that has pointed out the source of all good
things for men; for, as they were going out of the temple, young
Crassus first stumbled at the gate, and then his father fell upon him.

XVIII. While Crassus was getting together his forces out of the winter
quarter, there came ambassadors from Arsakes[60] with a short message.
They said, if the army was sent by the Romans, there was nothing but
war without truce, and without any terms; but if Crassus, contrary to
the wish of his country, as they heard, had brought arms against the
Parthians and occupied territory for his private profit, Arsakes would
act with moderation, and would take pity on the old age of Crassus,
and give up to the Romans the men whom he had in his power, and who
were rather under guard themselves than keeping guard over others.
Crassus haughtily replied, that he would give an answer in Seleukeia;
on which Vagises, the oldest of the ambassadors, smiled, and, showing
the palm of his hand, said, "From here, Crassus, hair will grow before
you see Seleukeia." The ambassadors now returned to Hyrodes, to inform
him that he must be ready for war. From the cities of Mesopotamia, in
which there were Roman garrisons, some soldiers, who made their escape
at great hazard, brought reports that caused much anxiety, having been
eye-witnesses of the numbers of the enemy, and of their mode of
attacking the cities; and, as is usual, they magnified everything
which they reported. "When the enemy pursued," they said, "no man
could escape from them, and when they fled, they could not be
overtaken; that strange missiles preceded the appearance of the enemy,
and before one could see who sent them, they pierced through
everything that they struck; and as to the arms of the mailed[61]
soldiers, some were made to push through every obstacle, and others to
give way to nothing." When the soldiers heard this their courage sank;
for they had been led to believe that the Parthians did not differ at
all from the Armenians and Cappadocians, whom Lucullus plundered and
robbed till he was weary, and they thought that the hardest part of
the war would be a long march, and the pursuit of men who would not
come to close quarters; but now, contrary to their hopes, they were in
expectation of a contest and great danger, so that some of the
officers thought that Crassus ought to stop, and again submit to their
deliberation the general state of affairs. Among these was Cassius[62]
the quæstor. The seers, also, in gentle terms showed that bad and
unfavourable signs were always prognosticated to Crassus by the
victims. But Crassus paid no attention to them, nor to those who
advised anything else except to move on.

XIX. But Crassus was in no small degree encouraged by Artabazes[63]
the king of the Armenians, who came to the camp with six thousand
horsemen. These were said to be the guards and attendants of the king;
and he promised ten thousand men clothed in mail and thirty thousand
infantry, who were to be maintained at his own cost. He attempted to
persuade Crassus to invade Parthia through Armenia; for, he said, the
army would not only have abundance of provision in its march through
the country by reason of him supplying them, but would also advance
safely, having in their front many mountains and continuous hills, and
ground unfavourable for cavalry, in which alone lay the strength of
the Parthians. Crassus was well enough satisfied with the zeal of the
king and the splendour of the proffered aid; but he said he would
march through Mesopotamia, where he had left many brave Romans; upon
this the Armenian went away. As Crassus was taking his army over at
the Zeugma,[64] many extraordinary claps of thunder broke around, and
many flashes of lightning came right in front of the army; and a wind,
mingled with cloud and hurricane,[65] falling on the raft, broke up
and crushed to pieces a large part of it. The spot also, on which
Crassus intended to encamp, was struck with two thunderbolts.[66] A
horse, belonging to the general, which was caparisoned in splendid
style, violently dragged along the man who held the reins, and
plunging into the stream, disappeared. It is said also, that the first
eagle which was raised, turned round spontaneously. Added to this, it
happened that, as they were giving out the rations to the soldiers
after crossing the river, lentils and salt were given first, which the
Romans consider to be symbols of lamentation, and are accustomed to
place before the dead; and, as Crassus was haranguing the soldiers, an
expression escaped him which greatly alarmed the army. He said he
would destroy the raft over the river, that no one among them might
return; and though he ought, upon seeing the imprudence of his words,
to have recalled what he had said and explained it to the soldiers, he
neglected to do so, through his arrogant temper. Finally, when he was
offering the usual expiatory sacrifice, and the priest had put the
viscera into his hands, he threw them away, on which, observing that
the standers-by were greatly disturbed, he said with a smile, "Such is
old age; but no arms at least shall drop from its hands."

XX. After this he advanced along the river, with seven legions and
nearly four thousand horsemen, and almost as many light-armed troops
as horsemen. Some of the scouts now returned from their exploration
and reported that the country was clear of men, and that they had
fallen in with the tracks of many horses, which indicated that they
had turned about and were retreating. This gave Crassus still better
hopes, and made the soldiers completely despise the Parthians, who, as
they supposed, would not come to close quarters. However, Cassius
again had some conversation with Crassus, and advised him at least to
give his troops rest in some of the garrisoned cities, till he should
get some certain information about the enemy; but if he would not do
this, to advance towards Seleukeia along the river. He urged that the
boats which carried the provisions would furnish them with supplies by
stopping at the places of encampment, and that, by having the river as
a protection against being hemmed in by the enemy, they would always
be able to fight them on fair terms.

XXI. While Crassus was considering and reflecting on these matters,
there comes an Arab chieftain, Ariamnes[67] by name, a cunning and
faithless man, and of all the misfortunes that were by chance combined
to ruin the Romans the chief and crowning mischief. Some of them who
had served with Pompeius knew him as one who had received favours from
Pompeius, and was supposed to be a friend to the Romans; but he now
came to Crassus with a treacherous intent, and with the privity of the
royal generals, to try if he could draw him far away from the river
and the foot of the hills, into a boundless plain, where he might be
surrounded by the enemy; for nothing was further from the intentions
of the Parthians than to attack the Romans right in front.
Accordingly, the barbarian coming to Crassus (and he was a plausible
talker), spake in high terms of Pompeius as his benefactor, and
praised the force of Crassus; but he blamed him for his tardiness,
inasmuch as he was delaying and making preparation, as if he would
have occasion to employ arms instead of hands and the most active
feet, against an enemy who had long been trying to get together, as
quick as they could, their most valuable property and their best
slaves, and to move off to the Scythians or Hyrkanians. "And yet," he
said, "if you intend to fight, you ought to press on before the king
recovers his courage and all his forces are concentrated; for now
Surena and Sillakes have been thrown in your way to stand the attack,
and the king is no where to be seen." But all this was false. For
Hyrodes had at first divided his forces into two parts, and he was
himself ravaging Armenia to take vengeance on Artavasdes; but he sent
Surena against the Romans, not because he despised them, as some say,
for it was not consistent for him to disdain Crassus as an antagonist,
the first of the Romans, and to war against Artavasdes and take the
villages of Armenia; but it seems that he really feared the danger,
and that he was on the watch to await the result, and that he put
Surena in the front to try the fortune of a battle, and so to divert
the enemy. For Surena was no person of mean estate: in wealth, birth,
and consideration, he was next to the king; but, in courage and
ability, the first of the Parthians of his time; and, besides all
this, in stature and beauty of person he had no equal. He used always
to travel, when he was on his own business, with a thousand camels to
carry his baggage, and he had following him two hundred carriages for
concubines; and a thousand mailed horsemen, with a larger number of
light cavalry, escorted him; and he had in all, horsemen, clients,[68]
and slaves, no less than ten thousand. Now by hereditary right he had
the privilege of first placing the diadem on the head of him who
became king of the Parthians;[69] and this very Hyrodes, who had been
driven out, he restored to the Parthian empire, and took for him
Seleukeia the Great, being the first to mount the wall and to put to
flight with his own hand those who opposed him. Though he was not yet
thirty years of age at that time, he had the first reputation for
prudent counsel and judgment, by which qualities particularly he
caused the ruin of Crassus, who through his confidence and pride in
the first place, and next through his fears and his misfortunes,
became a most easy victim to fraud.

XXII. The barbarian, after persuading Crassus, drew him away from the
river, and led him through the plains by a track at first convenient
and easy, but which soon became toilsome; for it was succeeded by deep
sand, and plains treeless and waterless, not bounded in any direction
by any object that the eye could reach, so that, not only through
thirst and the difficulty of the march, was the army exhausted, but
even the aspect of all around caused the soldiers to despond past all
comfort, seeing neither plant, nor stream, nor top of sloping hill,
nor blade of grass sprouting or rising through the earth, but a bare
sea-like wave of desert heaps of sand environing the army. Now this of
itself made the Romans suspect treachery. Messengers also came from
Artavasdes the Armenian, with a message that he was engaged in a heavy
struggle since Hyrodes had fallen upon him, and that he could not send
Crassus aid; but he advised Crassus above all things to change his
route immediately, and, by joining the Armenians, to bring the contest
with Hyrodes to a close: but, if he would not do this, he recommended
him to advance, and always to avoid encamping in such places as were
adapted for the movements of cavalry, and to keep close to the
mountainous parts: to all which Crassus sent no written answer, but,
under the influence of passion and perverse disposition, he answered,
that he had no leisure at present to deal with the Armenians, but he
would come at another time to punish Artavasdes for his treachery.
Cassius was again much dissatisfied: but he gave over advising
Crassus, who was out of humour with him, though Cassius himself abused
the barbarian. "What evil dæmon," he said, "vilest of men, brought you
to us, and by what drugs and witchcraft have you persuaded Crassus to
plunge his army into a boundless wilderness and an abyss, and to
pursue a path more fit for a nomadic chief of robbers than for a Roman
Imperator?" But the barbarian, who was a cunning follow, with abject
servility, prayed him to endure a little longer; and, while running
along with the soldiers and giving them his help, he would jeer at
them in a laughing mood, and say, "I suppose you think that you are
marching through Campania, and you long for the fountains, and
streams, and shades, and baths, and taverns? Have you forgotten that
you are crossing the confines of the Arabs and Assyrians?" Thus the
barbarian amused the Romans, and before his treachery was discovered
he rode off, not, however, without the knowledge of Crassus, after
making him believe that he would serve the Roman army, and put the
affairs of the enemy in confusion.

XXIII. It is said that on that day Crassus did not appear, as is the
custom of Roman generals, in a purple dress, but in black, which he
immediately changed on observing what he had done: and it is also said
that the men who carried the standards had much difficulty in raising
some of them up, for they stuck in the ground as if they were firmly
rooted there. Crassus ridiculed all these omens, and quickened his
march, urging the infantry to follow after the cavalry, till at last a
few of those who had been sent forward as scouts came up, and reported
that the rest of them had been cut off by the enemy, and they had
escaped with difficulty, and that the Parthians were advancing with a
large force, and full of confidence. This threw all the army into
confusion, and Crassus was completely confounded, and began to put his
men in order hastily, and with no great presence of mind: at first, as
Cassius recommended, he extended the line of the legionary soldiers as
far as possible in the plain, and making it of small depth, in order
to prevent the enemy from attacking them on the flank, he distributed
the cavalry on the wings; but he changed his plan and, drawing his men
together, formed them into a deep square of four fronts, with twelve
cohorts on each side. By the side of each cohort he placed a body of
horse, in order that no part of the army might be without the aid of
the cavalry, but might make the attack equally protected on all sides.
He gave one of the wings to Cassius, and the other to young Crassus;
he himself took his station in the centre. Thus advancing, they came
to a stream called Balissus,[70] which was neither large nor copious;
but it was a joyful sight to the soldiers in the midst of the drought
and heat, and by comparison with the rest of their laborious march
through a country without water. Now most of the commanders thought
that they ought to encamp and spend the night there, and learn what
was the number of the enemy, and the nature and disposition of their
force, and so advance against them at daybreak; but Crassus, being
prevailed upon by the importunity of his son, and the cavalry with
him, to advance immediately, and engage with the enemy, gave orders
for the men who required it to eat and drink in their ranks. And
before this could be well accomplished all through the ranks, he led
on his men, not slowly, nor halting at intervals, as is usual when men
are marching to battle, but he kept them up to a quick, unbroken pace,
until the enemy were in sight, who, contrary to expectation, did not
appear to the Romans to be either numerous or formidable; for Surena
disguised his numbers by placing the mass of his force behind the
front ranks, and he prevented their bright armour from being seen by
ordering his men to cover themselves with cloaks and skins. But when
they were near the Romans, and the standard was raised by the general,
first of all they filled the plain with a deep sound and a terrific
noise; for the Parthians do not excite themselves to battle with horns
or trumpets, but they have hollow instruments,[71] made of skin, and
furnished with brass bells, on which they strike at the same time in
various parts; and these instruments produce a kind of deep and dismal
sound, compounded of the roaring of wild beasts and the harsh crash
of thunder; for the Parthians rightly judge that of all the senses
the hearing is that which causes the greatest alarm in the mind, and
that, when this sense is affected, there is the speediest and greatest
disturbance in the judgment.

XXIV. The Romans were startled at the noise, when all of a sudden
throwing off the covering of their armour the Parthians appeared, with
their helmets and breastplates flashing like flame, the Margian
steel[72] glittering sharp and bright, and the horses equipped in mail
of brass and iron; but Surena was most conspicuous of all, being the
tallest and handsomest man among them, though his personal appearance,
owing to his feminine beauty, did not correspond to his reputation for
courage, for he was dressed more in the Median fashion, with his face
painted[73] and his hair parted, while the rest of the Parthians,
still keeping to the Scythian fashion, wore their hair long and bushy
to make themselves more formidable. At first the Parthians intended to
fall upon them with their long spears, and to drive the front ranks
from their ground; but when they saw the depth of their close-locked
ranks, and the firmness and stability of the men, they drew back; and
while they seemed to be at the same time dispersing themselves and
breaking their ranks, they threw themselves around the square before
the Romans were aware of it. Crassus ordered the light-armed troops to
spring forward; but they had not advanced far before they were met by
a shower of arrows, which galled them, and they ran back for shelter
among the legionary soldiers, and caused the beginning of disorder and
alarm among the Romans, who saw the vigour with which the arrows were
discharged and their strength, for they tore the armour and made their
way through everything alike, whether hard or soft defence. The
Parthians, dispersing themselves at considerable distances from one
another, began to discharge their arrows from all points at once, not
taking any very exact aim (for the close and compact ranks of the
Romans did not give a man the opportunity of missing if he wished it),
but sending their arrows with vigorous and forcible effect from bows
which were strong and large, and, owing to their great degree of
bending, discharged the missiles with violence. Now the condition of
the Romans was pitiable from the beginning: for, if they kept their
position, they were exposed to be wounded, and if they attempted to
close with the enemy, they were just as far from doing the enemy any
harm, and they suffered just as much; for the Parthians while
retreating[74] still discharged their arrows, and they do this most
effectually next to the Scythians: and it is a most subtle device to
make their escape from danger while they are still fighting, and to
take away the disgrace of flight.

XXV.[75] The Romans endured so long as they had hopes that the
Parthians would withdraw from the contest when they had discharged
their arrows, or would come to close quarters; but when they perceived
that there were many camels standing there, loaded with arrows, and
that the Parthians who had first shot all their arrows, turned round
to the camels for a fresh supply, Crassus, seeing no end to this,
began to lose heart, and he sent messengers to his son with orders to
force the enemy to engage before he was surrounded, for the Parthians
were mainly attacking and surrounding with their cavalry the wing
commanded by young Crassus, with the view of getting in his rear.
Accordingly, the young man taking thirteen hundred horsemen,--a
thousand of whom he had brought from Cæsar,--and five hundred
archers, and eight cohorts of the legionary soldiers, who were nearest
to him, wheeled about to attack the Parthians. But the Parthians, who
were manœuvring about Crassus, either because they fell in with some
marshes,[76] as some say, or because it was their design to attack
Crassus when they had drawn him as far as they could from his father,
turned round and fled. On this Crassus, calling out that the Parthians
did not stand their ground, advanced with Censorinus and
Megabacchus,[77] of whom Megabacchus was distinguished for courage and
strength, and Censorinus[78] was a senator and a powerful speaker,
both of them companions of Crassus, and about the same age. The
cavalry pursued the enemy, nor did the infantry allow themselves to be
left behind, being full of alacrity and hope of victory; for they
thought that they were victorious and in pursuit: but they had not
gone far before they perceived the stratagem; for the Parthians, who
were supposed to be flying, began to face about, and others, in
greater numbers, joined them. Upon this the Romans halted, thinking
that the enemy would come to close quarters with them, as they were
only few in number. But the Parthians placing their mailed horsemen in
the front, to oppose the Romans, rode about them with the rest of the
cavalry dispersed, and, by trampling the ground, they raised from the
bottom heaps of sand, which threw up such an immense cloud of dust
that the Romans could neither see clearly nor speak; and, being driven
into a narrow compass, and falling one on another, they were wounded
and died no easy nor yet a speedy death, for tortured with violent
convulsions and pain, and writhing with the arrows in them, they
broke them in the wounds, and, by trying to pull out by force the
barbed points, which had pierced through their veins and nerves, they
increased the evil by breaking the arrows, and thus injured
themselves. Many thus fell, and the survivors also were unable to
fight; for, when Publius encouraged them to attack the mailed
horsemen, they showed him that their hands were nailed to their
shields, and their feet fastened right through to the ground, so that
they were unable either to fly or to defend themselves. However,
Publius cheering the cavalry, made a vigorous attack with them, and
closed with the enemy; but the Romans were under a disadvantage, both
as to attack and defence, striking with small and feeble spears
against breastplates of raw hide and iron, and receiving the blows of
long spears on the lightly-equipped and bare bodies of the Gauls, for
Crassus trusted most to them, and with them indeed he did wonderful
feats; for the Gauls, laying hold of the long spears, and closing with
the Parthians, pushed them from their horses, the men, owing to the
weight of their armour, being unable to stir themselves; and many of
the Gauls, quitting their own horses, and slipping under those of the
enemy, wounded them in the belly, and the horses springing up through
pain, and, at the same time, trampling on their riders and the enemy,
fell dead. The Gauls were most oppressed by the heat and thirst, being
unaccustomed to both, and they had lost most of their horses by
driving them against the long spears. They were, therefore, compelled
to retreat to the legionary soldiers, taking with them Publius, who
was badly wounded. Seeing a sandy eminence near, they retreated to it,
and fastened their horses in the middle, and closing in their front by
close-locking their shields, they thought they could thus more easily
repel the enemy: but it turned out just the other way; for, while they
were on the level ground, the front ranks did, in some sort, give
relief to those who were behind; but on this spot, which raised the
men one above another, by reason of the inequality of the ground, and
placed every one who was in the rear above the man in front of him,
there was no one who could escape, and they were all alike exposed to
the missiles, lamenting their inglorious and unresisting death. There
were with Publius two Greeks, who belonged to the dwellers in those
parts in Carrhæ,[79] Hieronymus and Nikomachus, both of whom attempted
to persuade Publius to retire with them, and to make his escape to
Ichnæ[80] a city which had taken the side of the Romans, and was not
far off. But he replied that no death was so dreadful as to make
Publius, through fear of it, desert those who were losing their lives
for his sake, and bade them save themselves, and taking leave of them,
he allowed them to go: himself being unable to use his hand
effectually, for it was pierced by an arrow, presented his side to his
shield-bearer[81] and ordered him to despatch him with his sword. They
say that Censorinus perished in the same way, and that Megabacchus
killed himself, and all the rest of the most distinguished men. The
Parthians, ascending the hill, transfixed with their spears the
survivors; and it is said that not more than five hundred were taken
prisoners. The Parthians, cutting off the head of Publius, immediately
rode off to attack Crassus.

XXVI. With Crassus matters were thus. After ordering his son to make
an attack on the Parthians, and receiving intelligence that they were
routed to a great distance, and were hotly pursued; seeing also that
the enemy in front were no longer pressing on him so much as before,
for most of them had crowded to the place where young Crassus was, he
recovered his courage a little, and drawing his forces together,
posted them on a sloping ground, being in immediate expectation that
his son would return from the pursuit. Of those who were sent by
Publius to his father, when he began to be in danger, the first fell
into the hands of the enemy and were killed; and the next, after
escaping with great difficulty, reported that Publius was lost, if he
did not receive speedy and sufficient aid from his father. Now,
Crassus was affected by many contending feelings at once, and he no
longer viewed anything with sober judgment. Distracted by alarm for
the whole army, and love of his son at the same time, he was urged by
one motive to go to his aid, and by the other not to go: but finally
he began to move in advance. In the mean time the enemy came up,
making themselves more formidable by their shouts and pæans, and many
of the drums again bellowed around the Romans, who were in expectation
of a second attack. The Parthians, carrying the head of Publius fixed
on a spear, rode close up to the Romans, and, displaying it
insultingly, asked who were his parents and family, for it was not
decent to suppose that so noble and brave a youth was the son of so
cowardly and mean a man as Crassus. The sight of this broke and
unstrung the spirit of the Romans more than all the rest of their
dangers; and it did not fill them with a spirit for revenge, as one
might have supposed, but with shuddering and trembling. Yet they say
that the courage of Crassus on that dreadful occasion shone forth more
brightly than ever before; for he went along the ranks, crying out,
"Mine alone, Romans, is this misfortune: but the great fortune and
glory of Rome abide in you, if your lives are saved, unbroken and
unvanquishcd: and, if you have any pity on me, who have been deprived
of the noblest of sons, show this in your fury against the enemy. Take
from them their rejoicing, avenge their cruelty: be not cast down at
what has happened, for it is the law that those who aim at great
things must also endure. Neither did Lucullus vanquish Tigranes
without loss of blood, nor Scipio Antiochus; and our ancestors of old
lost a thousand ships on the coast of Sicily, and in Italy many
Imperatores and generals, not one of whom, by being first vanquished,
prevented them from vanquishing the victors; for it is not by good
fortune that the Roman state has advanced to such a height of power,
but by the endurance and courage of those who meet danger."

XXVII. Though Crassus used such words to encourage them, he did not
see many eager to follow his exhortations: but, by ordering them to
shout the battle cry, he discovered the dispirited condition of his
men, so weak, and feeble, and irregular a shout they made; while the
cries on the side of the enemy were clear and bold. When the Parthians
began the attack, their slaves and clients, riding about on the flanks
of the Romans, galled them with their arrows: and the horsemen in
front, using their long spears, kept driving the Romans into a narrow
compass, except those who, to avoid death from the arrows, made a
desperate attempt to rush upon the Parthians; wherein they did the
enemy little damage, but met with a speedy death by great and mortal
wounds; for the Parthians drove their spears, heavy with iron, against
the horsemen; and, from the force of the blow, they often went even
through two men. After thus fighting, as dark came on the Parthians
retired, saying, that they allowed Crassus a single night to lament
his son, unless he should take better counsel for himself, and choose
rather to come to King Arsakes than to be taken. The Parthians
encamped near the Romans, in high hopes. A painful night followed to
the Romans, who neither paid any attention to the interment of the
dead, nor care to the wounded, and those who were in the agonies of
death; but every man was severally lamenting his own fate; for it
appeared that they could not escape, either if they waited there till
daybreak, or if they plunged by night into a boundless plain. And the
wounded caused a great difficulty; for they would be an obstacle to
the quickness of their flight if they attempted to carry them off:
and, if they should leave them, their shouts would betray the attempt
to escape unobserved. Though they considered Crassus to be the cause
of all their sufferings, the soldiers still wished to see him and hear
his voice. But Crassus, wrapping himself up in his cloak, lay
concealed in the dark, an example to the many of fortune's reverses,
and to the wise of want of judgment and of ambition, which made him
dissatisfied unless he was the first and greatest among so many
thousands, and think that he lacked everything because he was judged
to be inferior to two men only. However, Octavius the legate, and
Cassius, endeavoured to rouse and comfort him; but, finding that he
had entirely given himself up to despair, they called together the
centurions and tribunes, and, after deliberating, they resolved not to
stay on the ground, and they made an attempt at first to put the army
in motion without the sound of the trumpet, and in silence. But when
the soldiers who were disabled, perceived that they were going to be
deserted, terrible disorder and confusion, mingled with groans and
shouts, filled the camp; and this was followed by disorder and panic
as they began to advance, for they thought that the enemy was coming
upon them. After frequently turning from their route, and frequently
putting themselves in order of battle, and taking up the wounded who
followed, and then laying them down again, they lost much time on the
march, with the exception of three hundred horsemen, with Ignatius[82]
at their head, who reached Carrhæ about midnight. Ignatius, calling
out in the Roman language to the watch upon the walls, and making them
hear, told them to tell Coponius, the commander, that there had been a
great battle between Crassus and the Parthians; and, without saying
more or who he was, he rode off to the Zeugma, and saved all his men;
but he got a bad name for deserting his general. However, the
information thus conveyed to Coponius was some advantage to Crassus;
for Coponius concluded that this hasty and confused message indicated
that he who brought it had no good news to report: and, accordingly,
he immediately ordered the soldiers to arm; and, as soon as he learned
that Crassus was on his march, he went out to meet him, and, taking
charge of him and his army, conducted them into the city.

XXVIII. Though the Parthians during the night discovered that the
Romans were making their escape, they did not pursue, but at daybreak
they came upon those who were left in the camp, to the number of four
thousand, and massacred them; and they rode about the plain and
overtook many who were there rambling about. Four complete cohorts,
while it was still dark, under the command of Varguntinus the legate,
got separated from the rest and lost their way, and, being surrounded
by the Parthians on an eminence, they fought till they were all
killed, with the exception of twenty men. The Parthians, admiring the
courage of these twenty men, who were endeavouring to push through
them with their bare swords, made way and allowed them a passage
through their ranks, and to march slowly to Carrhæ. A false report
reached Surena, that Crassus and all the men of rank had made their
escape, and that those who had fled to Carrhæ were a mingled rabble
not worth notice. Thinking, then, that he had lost the end of his
victory, but being still doubtful and wishing to know the truth, in
order that he might either stay there and besiege the town, or leave
the people of Carrhæ behind and pursue Crassus, he sends one of the
men with him, who could speak both languages, with instructions to
approach the walls, and in the Roman language to call out for Crassus
himself or Cassius, and to say that Surena wished to have a conference
with them. The man did as he was ordered; and when it was reported to
Crassus, he accepted the invitation, and soon after there came from
the barbarians some Arabs who well knew Crassus and Cassius by sight,
having been in the camp before the battle. The Arabs, observing
Cassius on the wall, said that Surena proposed a truce, and offered,
if they would become friends to the king, to let them go safe, if they
would leave Mesopotamia; for he considered this proposal advantageous
to both sides, rather than to let matters come to extremities. Cassius
accepted the proposal, and asked for a place and time to be fixed
where Surena and Crassus should meet: the men replied that this should
be done, and rode off.

XXIX. Now Surena was delighted at the Romans being besieged, and at
daybreak he led the Parthians against the city, who, with many
insulting expressions, bade the Romans, if they wished to have a
truce, deliver up to them Crassus and Cassius[83] in chains. The
Romans were vexed at being deceived; and, telling Crassus to give up
all hopes of aid from the Armenians as too remote and groundless, they
prepared to make their escape by stealth; and none of the people of
Carrhæ were to know this before the time came. But Andromachus, that
most faithless wretch, heard of it from Crassus, who confided to him
the secret, and also the guidance on the route. Accordingly, all was
known to the Parthians; for Andromachus reported to them every
particular. But as it is not the custom of the Parthians to fight in
the dark, and indeed they cannot easily do it, and Crassus had left
the city by night, Andromachus contrived that the Parthians should not
be far behind in the pursuit, by leading the Romans first by one route
and then by another, till at last he brought them out of their course
into deep marshes and ground full of ditches, and thus made the march
difficult and circuitous to all who followed him; for there were some
who suspected that Andromachus had no honest object in turning and
twisting about, and therefore did not follow. Cassius, indeed,
returned to Carrhæ; and when the guides, who were Arabs, advised him
to wait till the moon had passed the Scorpion, he replied, "I fear the
Archer more than the Scorpion," and, saying this, he rode off to
Syria, with five hundred horsemen. Others, who had faithful guides,
got into a mountainous country, called Sinnaca,[84] and were in a safe
position before daybreak: they were about five thousand in number, and
were commanded by a brave man, Octavius. But daybreak found Crassus
exposed to the treachery of Andromachus in the unfavourable ground and
the marshes. Crassus had with him four cohorts of the legionary
soldiers, and a very few horsemen, and five lictors, with whom he got
upon the road with great difficulty just as the enemy was falling upon
him; and now being about twelve stadia short of joining Octavius, he
fled to another hill not so difficult for cavalry nor yet so strong,
but one that lay below Sinnaca, and was connected with it by a long
ridge, which stretched through the middle of the plain. His danger was
apparent to Octavius, who ran before any one else with a few men, from
the higher ground to aid Crassus, upon which the rest of the men,
abusing themselves for cowards, rushed forward, and, falling on the
enemy, and repulsing them from the hill, put Crassus in the midst of
them, and threw their shields before him, proudly exclaiming that
there was no Parthian missile which should strike the Imperator until
all of them had fallen in defence of him.

XXX. Surena observing that the spirit of the Parthians was somewhat
dulled towards the contest, and, if the night should come on and the
Romans get among the mountains, they could not by any means be
overtaken, employed the following stratagem against Crassus. Some of
the captives were let loose, who, in the Parthian camp, had heard the
barbarians saying to one another, in pursuance of a concerted plan,
that the king did not wish the war with the Romans to be carried to
extremities, but desired to have their friendship again, by doing them
the favour of treating Crassus kindly. Accordingly the barbarians
stopped fighting; and Surena, with his chief officers, riding gently
up to the hill, unstrung his bow, and holding out his right hand,
invited Crassus to come to terms, saying, that Crassus had put the
king's courage and power to the test, though the king did not wish it,
and yet the king of his own free will made the Romans an offer of
mercy and friendship by being ready to make a truce with them if they
would retire, and by giving them the opportunity of a safe retreat.
Upon Surena saying this the Romans eagerly accepted his proposal, and
were overjoyed; though Crassus, having been always over-reached by
their fraud, and considering the suddenness of the change to be
inexplicable, would not listen to them and hesitated. But the soldiers
began to call out and urge him to accept the terms, and they fell to
abusing and reproaching him, for wishing to expose them to the risk of
fighting with those whom he did not venture to go to a conference
with, even when they laid aside their arms. Crassus at first attempted
to prevail on them by entreaty, and he said that, if they would hold
out for the rest of the day, they would be able to march by night
through the rough and mountain country, and he pointed out to them the
route, and entreated them not to throw away their hopes when safety
was so near; but, as the soldiers began to be exasperated and to
clatter their arms and threaten him, he was alarmed, and advanced
towards Surena, after first turning round and merely saying, "Octavius
and Petronius, and you Roman officers who are here, you see that I go
under compulsion, and you are witnesses that I am treated in a
shameful way and am under constraint; but, if you get safe home, tell
all the world, that Crassus lost his life through the treachery of the
enemy, and was not surrendered by his fellow-citizens."

XXXI. Yet Octavius and those about him did not stay behind, but
descended the hill with Crassus. However, Crassus made the lictors who
were following him turn back. The first who met them, on the part of
the barbarians, were two Greeks of half-breed, who, leaping down from
their horses, made their obeisance to Crassus, and, addressing him in
the Greek language, urged him to send forward some persons, who, as
they said, would see that Surena himself and those about him were
advancing without armour and without their weapons. Crassus replied,
that if he had the least concern about his life, he should not have
put himself into their hands; however, he sent two Roscii, brothers,
to inquire upon what terms they should meet, and how many of them.
Surena immediately seized and detained the two brothers, and he
himself advanced on horseback with the chief officers, and said, "What
is this? the Roman Imperator on foot while we are riding!" and he
ordered them to bring a horse to Crassus. Crassus observed that
neither himself nor Surena was acting wrong in coming to the
conference according to the fashion of their respective countries; on
which Surena said that from that moment there was a truce and peace
between king Hyrodes and the Romans; but that it was requisite to
advance to the river,[85] and there have the agreement put in writing;
"for you Romans," he said, "have not a very good memory about
contracts;" and he held out his right hand to Crassus. When Crassus
was going to send for a horse, Surena said there was no occasion; "for
the king gives you this." At the same time a horse with golden bits
stood close by Crassus, and the grooms raised him up and mounted him,
and then followed, quickening the horse's pace with blows. Octavius
first laid hold of the bridle of the horse, and, after him, Petronius,
one of the tribunes, and then the rest got round the horse of Crassus,
endeavouring to stop it, and dragging away those who pressed close
upon Crassus on each side. This led to a struggle and tumult, and
finally to blows; Octavius drew his sword and killed the groom of one
of the barbarians, and another struck Octavius from behind and killed
him. Petronius had no weapon, and, being struck on the breastplate, he
leapt down from the horse unwounded; and a Parthian, named
Pomaxathres, killed Crassus.[86] Some say that it was not Pomaxathres,
but another, who killed Crassus, and that Pomaxathres cut off the head
and right hand when Crassus was lying on the ground. But these are
rather matters of conjecture than of certain knowledge; for of those
who were present some fell there fighting about Crassus, and the rest
immediately fled back to the hill. Upon this the Parthians came and
said, that Crassus had been punished as he deserved, but Surena
invited the rest to come down and fear nothing: whereupon, some of the
Romans came down and surrendered, and the rest dispersed themselves
under cover of night, of whom a very few escaped; the rest the Arabs
hunted out, and put to death when they caught them. It is said that
twenty thousand perished in all, and ten thousand were taken alive.

XXXII. Surena sent the head[87] and hand of Crassus to Hyrodes in
Armenia; and, causing a report to be carried by messengers to
Seleukeia that he was bringing Crassus alive, he got ready a kind of
ridiculous procession which, in mockery, he called a triumph. One of
the Roman prisoners who bore the greatest resemblance to Crassus,
Caius Paccianus, putting on a barbarian female dress, and being
instructed to answer as Crassus and Imperator to those who addressed
him, was conducted, seated on a horse, and in front of him trumpeters,
and some lictors rode upon camels; and there were purses[88] suspended
from the fasces, and, by the side of the axes, heads of Romans newly
cut off. Behind these followed courtesans of Seleukeia, singing girls,
who chanted many obscene and ridiculous things about the effeminacy
and cowardice of Crassus. All this was public. But Surena assembling
the Senate of Seleukeia,[89] laid before them certain licentious books
of the Milesiaca of Aristeides,[90] and, in this matter, at least,
there was no invention on his part; for they were found among the
baggage of Rustius,[91] and they gave Surena the opportunity of
greatly insulting and ridiculing the Romans, because they could not,
even when going to war, abstain from such things and such books. To
the Senate of Seleukeia, however, Æsopus[92] appeared to be a wise
man, when they saw Surena with the wallet of Milesian obscenities in
front of him, and dragging behind him a Parthian Sybaris in so many
waggons full of concubines, in a manner forming a counterpart to those
vipers and skytalæ[93] so much talked of, by presenting the visible
and the front parts formidable and terrific, with spears, and bows,
and horses, but in the rear of the phalanx, terminating in harlots,
and rattling cymbals, and lute-playing, and nocturnal revels with
women. Rustius, indeed, merits blame, but the Parthians were shameless
in finding fault with the Milesian stories; for many of the kings who
have reigned over them, as Arsakidæ, have been the sons of Milesian
and Ionian concubines.

XXXIII. While this was going on, Hyrodes happened to have been
reconciled to Artavasdes the Armenian, and had agreed to receive the
sister of Artavasdes as wife to his son Pacorus: and there were
banquets and drinking-parties between them, and representations of
many Greek plays; for Hyrodes was not a stranger either to the Greek
language or the literature of the Greeks: and Artavasdes used to write
tragedies, and speeches, and histories, some of which are preserved.
When the head of Crassus was brought to the door, the tables were
taken away, and a tragedy actor Jason,[94] by name, a native of
Tralles, chanted that part of the Bacchæ[95] of Euripides which
relates to Agave. While he was receiving applause. Sillakes, standing
by the door of the apartment, and making a reverence, threw the head
of Crassus before the company. The Parthians clapped their hands with
shouts of joy and the attendants, at the command of the king, seated
Sillakes, while Jason handed over to one of the members of the chorus
the dress of Pentheus, and, laying hold of the head of Crassus, and,
putting on the air of a bacchant, he sung these verses with great

    We bring from a mountain
    A young one new killed to the house,
    A fortunate prey.

This delighted all the company; and, while the following verses were
being chanted, which are a dialogue with the chorus,

    _A_. Who killed him?
    _B_. Mine is the honour,

Pomaxathres, springing up (for he happened to be at the banquet), laid
hold of the head, as if it was more appropriate for him to say this
than for Jason. The king was pleased, and made Pomaxathres a present,
according to the fashion of the country, and he gave Jason a talent.
In such a farce[96] as this, it is said, that the expedition of
Crassus terminated just like a tragedy. However, just punishment
overtook Hyrodes for his cruelty, and Surena for his treachery. Not
long after, Hyrodes put Surena to death, being jealous of his
reputation. Hyrodes also lost his son Pacorus,[97] who was defeated
by the Romans in a battle; and having fallen into an illness which
turned out to be dropsy, his son, Phraates,[98] who had a design on
his life, gave him aconite.[99] But the poison only operated on the
disease, which was thrown off together with it, and Hyrodes thereby
relieved; whereupon Phraates took the shortest course and strangled
his father.


[Footnote 5: Crassus belonged to the Licinia Gens. His name was M.
Licinius Crassus Dives. He was the son of P. Licinius Crassus Dives,
who was consul B.C. 97, and afterwards governor of the nearer Spain.
In B.C. 93 P. Crassus had a triumph. He was afterwards employed in the
Marsic war; and in B.C. 89 he was censor with L. Julius Cæsar, who had
been consul in B.C. 90.

M. Licinius Crassus, whose life Plutarch has written, was the youngest
son of the Censor. The year of his birth is uncertain; but as he was
above sixty when he left Rome for his Parthian campaign B.C. 55, he
must have been born before B.C. 115. Meyer (_Orator. Roman.
Fragment_.) places the birth of Crassus in B.C. 114.]

[Footnote 6: Kaltwasser makes this passage mean that Crassus merely
took his brother's wife and her children to live with him; which is
contrary to the usual sense of the Greek words and readers the
following sentence unmeaning.

Kaltwasser observes that we do not know that such marriages were in
use among the Romans. I know no rule by which they were forbidden.
(Gaius, i. 58, &c.)]

[Footnote 7: The punishment of a Vestal Virgin for incontinence was
death. She was placed alive in a subterranean vault with a light and
some food. (Dionysius, ix. 40: Liv. 8. c. 15; Juvenal, Sat. iv. 8.)
The man who debauched a Vestal was also put to death. The Vestal
Virgins had full power of disposing of their property; they were
emancipated from the paternal power by the fact of being selected to
be Vestal Virgins (Gaius, i. 130); and they were not under the same
legal disabilities as other women (Gaius, i. 145; according to Dion
Cassius, 49. c. 38, Octavia and Livia received privileges like those
of the Vestals).

Another Licinia, a Vestal, had broken her vow, and was punished B.C.

[Footnote 8: See the Life of Crassus, c. 12; and the Life of Sulla, c.

[Footnote 9: This may hardly be a correct translation of [Greek:
argurognômonas] ἀργυρογνωμόνας: but it is something like the meaning.]

[Footnote 10: King Archidamus of Sparta, the second of the name, who
commanded the Peloponnesian war, B.C. 431. Plutarch (Life of
Demosthenes, c. 17) puts this saying in the mouth of one Krobylus, a

[Footnote 11: Cicero (_Brutus,_ c. 66) speaks of the oratory of
Crassus, and commends his care and diligence; but he speaks of his
natural parts as not striking. Crassus spoke on the same side as
Cicero in the defence of Murena, of Caelius, and of Balbus (Meyer,
_Orator. Roman. Fragmenta,_ p. 382).]

[Footnote 12: A Roman who aspired to the highest offices of the State,
prepared his way by the magnificence of his public entertainments
during his curule ædileship, and by his affable manners. An humble
individual is always gratified when a great man addresses him by name,
and a shake of the hand secures his devotion. Ovidius (_Ars Amat_. ii.
253) alludes to this way of winning popular favour, and judiciously
observes that it costs nothing, which would certainly recommend it to
Crassus. If a man's memory was not so good as that of Crassus, he had
only to buy a slave, as Horatius (1 _Epist_. i. 50) recommends, who
could tell him the name of every man whom he met. Such a slave was
called Nomenclator. If the nomenclator's memory ever failed him, he
would not let his master know it: he gave a person any name that came
into his head.]

[Footnote 13: The Greek is [Greek: stegastrou] στέγαστρου, 'something
that covers;' but whether cloak or hat, or covered couch, or sedan,
the learned have not yet determined.]

[Footnote 14: These words may not be Plutarch's, and several critics
have marked them as spurious. The Peripatetics, of whom Alexander was
one, did not consider wealth as one of the things that are indifferent
to a philosopher; the Stoics did.]

[Footnote 15: This is Plutarch's word; but the father of Crassus was
Proconsul in Spain. When Cinna and Marius returned to Rome, B.C. 87,
Crassus and his sons were proscribed. Crassus and one of his sons lost
their lives: the circumstances are stated somewhat differently by
different writers. (Florius, iii. 21; Appian, _Civil Wars_, i. 72.)

Drumann correctly remarks that Plutarch and other Greek writers often
use the word [Greek: stratêgos] στρατηγός simply to signify one who
has command, and that [Greek: stratêgos] is incorrectly rendered
'Prætor' by those who write in Latin, when they make use of the Greek
historians of Rome. But Plutarch's [Greek: stratêgos] στρατηγός
sometimes means prætor, and it is the word by which he denotes that
office; he probably does sometimes mean to say 'prætor,' when the man
of whom he speaks was not prætor. Whether [Greek: stratêgos] στρατηγός
in Plutarch is always translated prætor or always Commander, there
will be error. To translate it correctly in all cases, a man must know
whether the person spoken of was prætor or not; and that cannot always
be ascertained. But besides this, the word 'Commander' will not do,
for Plutarch sometimes calls a Proconsul [Greek: stratêgos] στρατηγός,
and a Proconsul had not merely a command: he had a government also.]

[Footnote 16: So the name is written by Sintenis, who writes it
Paccianus in the Life of Sertorius, c. 9. Some editions read Paciacus;
but the termination in Paciacus is hardly Roman, and the termination
in Pacianus is common. But the form Paciacus is adopted by Drumann,
where he is speaking of L. Junius Paciacus (_Geshichte Roms_, iv. p.

Drumann observes that the flight of Crassus to Spain must have taken
place B.C. 85, for he remained eight months in Spain and returned to
Rome on the news of Cinna's death, B.C. 84.]

[Footnote 17: The MSS. have [Greek: auran] αὖραν, 'breeze,' which
Coræs ingeniously corrected to [Greek: laupan] λαύπαν, 'path,' which
is undoubtedly right.]

[Footnote 18: If Fenestella died in A.D. 19 at the age of seventy, as
it is said, he would be born in B.C. 51, and he might have had this
story from the old woman. (Clinton, _Fasti_, A.D. 14.) See Life of
Sulla, c. 28.]

[Footnote 19: Malaca, which still retains its name Malaga, was an old
Phœnician settlement on the south coast of Spain. Much fish was salted
and cured there; but I know not on what ground Kaltwasser concludes
that the word 'Malach' means Salt. It is sometimes asserted that the
name is from the Aramaic word Malek, 'King;' but W. Humboldt (_Prüfung
der Untersuchungen über die Urbewohner Hispaniens)_ says that it is a
Basque word.]

[Footnote 20: The son of Metellus Numidicus. See the Lives of Marius
and Sertorius. Sulla lauded in Italy B.C. 83. See the Life of Sulla,
c. 27.]

[Footnote 21: This is the town which the Romans called Tuder. It was
situated in Umbria on a hill near the Tiber, and is represented by the
modern Todi.]

[Footnote 22: See the Life of Sulla, c. 29.]

[Footnote 23: There is nothing peculiar in this. It is common enough
for a man to blame in others the faults that he has himself.]

[Footnote 24: See the Life of Cæsar, c. 1. 2. and 11.]

[Footnote 25: M. Porcius Cato, whose Life Plutarch has written.]

[Footnote 26: Cn. Sicinius was Tribunus Plebis B.C. 76. He is
mentioned by Cicero (_Brutus,_ c. 60) as a man who had no other
oratorical qualification except that of making people laugh. The Roman
proverb to which Plutarch alludes occurs in Horatius, 1 Sat. 4. 34:--

     "Foenum habet in cornu, longe fuge."


[Footnote 27: The insurrection of the gladiators commenced B.C. 73, in
the consulship of M. Terentius Varo Lucullus, the brother of Lucius
Lucullus, and of C. Cassius Longinus Verus. The names of two other
leaders, Crixus and Oenomaus, are recorded by Floras (iii. 20) and by
Appian (_Civil Wars_, i. 116). The devastation caused by these
marauders was long remembered. The allusion of Horatius (_Carm._ ii.
14) to their drinking all the wine that they could find,is

[Footnote 28: This Clodius is called Appius CloDius Glaber by Florus
(iii. 20). Compare the account of Appian (i. 116). Spartacus commenced
the campaign by flying to Mount Vesuvius, which was the scene of the
stratagem that is told in this chapter (Frontinus, _Stratagem_, i. 5)
Drumann (_Geschichte Roms_, iv. 74. M. Licinius Crassus, N. 37) has
given a sketch of the campaign with Spartacus.]

[Footnote 29: P. Varinius Glaber who was prætor; and Clodius was his
legatus. He seems to be the same person whom Frontinus (_Stratagem_,
i. 5) mentions under the name of L. Varinus Proconsul.]

[Footnote 30: The place is unknown. Probably the true reading is
Salinæ, and the place may be the Salinæ Herculeæ, in the neighbourhood
of Herculaneum. But this is only a guess.]

[Footnote 31: The consuls were L. Gellius Publicola and Cn. Lentulus
Clodianus B.C. 72.]

[Footnote 32: This was C. Cassius Longinus Verus, proconsul of Gaul
upon the Po (see c. 8). Plutarch calls him [Greek: stratêgos]
στρατηγός. Appian (_Civil Wars_, i. 117) says that one of the consuls
defeated Crixus, who was at the head of 30,000 men, near Garganus,
that Spartacus afterwards defeated both the consuls, and meditated
advancing upon Rome with 120,000 foot soldiers. Spartacus sacrificed
three hundred Roman captives to the manes of Crixus, who had fallen in
the battle in which he was defeated; 20,000 of his men had perished
with Crixus.

Cassius was defeated in the neighbourhood of Mutina (Modena) as we
learn from Florus (iii. 20).]

[Footnote 33: Appian (i. 118) gives two accounts of the decimation,
neither of which agrees with the account of Plutarch. This punishment
which the Romans called Decimatio, is occasionally mentioned by the
Roman writers (Liv. ii. 59).]

[Footnote 34: Kaltwasser with the help of a false reading has
mistranslated this passage. He says that Spartacus sent over ten
thousand men into Sicily. Drumann has understood the passage as I have
translated it.]

[Footnote 35: If the length is rightly given, the ditch was about 38
Roman miles in length. There are no data for determining its position.
The circumstance is briefly mentioned by Appian (_Civil Wars_, i.
118). Frontinus (_Stratagem._, i. 5) states that Spartacus filled up
the ditch, where he crossed it, with the dead bodies of his prisoners
and of the beasts which were killed for that purpose.]

[Footnote 36: This lake, which Plutarch spells Leukanis, is placed by
Kaltwasser in the vicinity of Paestum or Poseidonia, but on what
grounds I do not know. Strabo indeed (p. 251) states that the river
makes marshes there, but that will not enable us to identify them.
Cramer (_Ancient Italy_, ii. 366) places here the Stagnum Lucanum,
where Plutarch "mentions that Crassus defeated a considerable body of
rebels under the command of Spartacus (Plut. Vit. Crass.)": but
nothing is given to prove the assertion. He adds, "In this district we
must also place the Mons Calamatius and Mons Cathena of which
Frontinus speaks in reference to the same event (_Stratagem_, ii. 4);
they are the mountains of Capaccio." This is founded on Cluverius, but
Cluverius concludes that the Calamatius of Frontinus (ii. 4, 7), or
Calamarcus as the MSS. seem to have it, is the same as the Cathena of
Frontinus (ii. 5, 34); for in fact Frontinus tells the same story
twice, as he sometimes does. It is a mistake to say that Frontinus is
speaking "of the same event," that is, the defeat of the gladiators on
the lake. He is speaking of another event, which is described farther
on in this chapter, when Crassus attacks Cannicius and Crixus, and
"sent," as Frontinus says (ii. 4, 7), " twelve cohorts round behind a

[Footnote 37: This was Marcus Lucullus, the brother of Lucius.]

[Footnote 38: 'To the Peteline mountains' in the original. Strabo
speaks of a Petelia in Lucania (p. 254), which some critics suppose
that he has confounded with the Petilia in the country of the Bruttii.
The reasons for this opinion are stated by Cramer (_Ancient Italy_,
ii. 367, 390).]

[Footnote 39: 'Quintus' in the text of Plutarch, which is a common
error. 'L. Quintius' in Frontinus (ii. 5, 34).]

[Footnote 40: The same thing is told in the Life of Pompeius, c. 21.]

[Footnote 41: In the Life of Marcellus, c. 22, Plutarch describes the
minor triumph, called the Ovatio, which name is from the word 'ovis' a
sheep; for a sheep only was sacrificed by the general who had the
minor triumph; he who had the greater triumph, sacrificed an ox. In an
ovatio the general walked in the procession, instead of riding in a
chariot drawn by four horses, as in the Triumphus Curulis; and he wore
a crown of myrtle, instead of a crown of bay which was worn on the
occasion of the greater triumph. But Plinius (_Hist. Nat._ xv. 29)
says that Crassus wore a crown of bay on the occasion of this

[Footnote 42: The first consulship of M. Licinius Crassus and Cn.
Pompeius Magnus belongs to B.C. 70.]

[Footnote 43: The story is told again in the Life of Pompeius, c. 23,
where Aurelius is called Caius Aurelius, which is probably the true

[Footnote 44: Crassus was censor with Lutatius Catulus in B.C. 65. The
duties of the censors are here briefly alluded to by Plutarch. One of
the most important was the numbering of the people and the
registration of property for the purposes of taxation. This quarrel of
the censors is mentioned by Dion Cassius (37. c. 9).]

[Footnote 45: The conspiracy of Catiline was in B.C. 63, the year when
Cicero was consul. See the Life of Cicero.

There seems to be no evidence that Crassus was implicated in the
affair of Catiline. Dion Cassius (37. c. 31) speaks of anonymous
letters about the conspiracy being brought to Crassus and other
nobles; and Plutarch states on the authority of Cicero that Crassus
communicated the letters to Cicero. Dion Cassius in another passage
(37. c. 35) mentions the suspicion against Crassus, and that one of
the prisoners informed against him, "but there were not many to
believe it." If Dion did not believe it, we need not; for he generally
believes anything that is to a man's discredit. Sallustius (_Bellum
Catilin._ c. 48) has given us a statement of the affair, but his own
opinion can scarcely be collected from it. He says, however, that he
had heard Crassus declare that Cicero was the instigator of this
charge. The orations of Cicero which Plutarch refers to are not

[Footnote 46: The text is corrupt, though the general meaning is
plain. See the note of Sintonis.]

[Footnote 47: The son of Crassus, who is introduced abruptly in
Plutarch's fashion.]

[Footnote 48: After Cæsar had been prætor in Spain he was elected
consul B.C. 59, with M. Calpurnius Bibulus (see the Life of Cæsar, c.
14). After his consulship Cæsar had the Gauls as his province. The
meeting at Luca (Lucca), which was on the southern limits of Cæsar's
province, took place B.C. 56; and here was formed the coalition which
is sometimes, though improperly, called the first Triumvirate.]

[Footnote 49: The second consulship of Pompeius and Crassus was B.C.
55. Cn. Cornelius Lentulus Marcellinus was one of the consuls of the
year B.C. 56, during which the elections for the year 55 took place.
This Domitius, L. Domitius Ahenobarbus, was consul B.C. 54. In the
quarrel between Pompeius and Cæsar, he joined Pompeius, and after
various adventures finally he lost his life in the battle of Pharsalus
B.C. 48.]

[Footnote 50: The first 'house' ([Greek: oikia] οἰκία) is evidently
the house of Domitius. The second house ([Greek: oikêma] οἴκημα),
which may be more properly rendered 'chamber,' may, as Sintenis says,
mean the Senate-house, if the reading is right. Kaltwasser takes the
second house to be the same as the first house; and he refers to the
Life of Pompeius, c. 51, 52, where the same story is told.

In place of [Greek: oikêma] οἴκημα some critics have read [Greek:
bêma] βῆμα the Rostra.]

[Footnote 51: Appian (_Civil Wars_, ii. 18) says that Pompeius
received Iberia and Libya. The Romans had now two provinces in the
Spanish peninsula, Hispania Citerior or Tarraconensis, and Ulterior or
Bætica. This arrangement, by which the whole power of the state was
distributed among Pompeius, Crassus and Cæsar, was in effect a
revolution, and the immediate cause of the wars which followed.

Appian (_Civil Wars_, ii. 18) after speaking of Crassus going on his
Parthian expedition in which he lost his life, adds, "but the Parthian
History will show forth the calamity of Crassus." Appian wrote a
Parthian History; but that which is now extant under the name is
merely an extract from Plutarch's Life of Crassus, beginning with the
sixteenth chapter: which extract is followed by another from
Plutarch's Life of Antonius. The compiler of this Parthian History has
put at the head of it a few words of introduction. The extract from
Crassus is sometimes useful for the various readings which it offers.]

[Footnote 52: This wife was Cæsar's daughter Julia, whom Pompeius
married in Cæsar's consulship (Vell. Paterc. ii. 44). She was nearly
twenty-three years younger than Pompeius. Julia died B.C. 54, after
giving birth to a son, who died soon after her. She possessed beauty
and a good disposition. The people, with whom she was a favourite, had
her buried in the Field of Mars. See the Lives of Pompeius and Cæsar.]

[Footnote 53: That is the Lex which prolonged Cæsar's government for
five years and gave Iberia (Spain) and Syria to Pompeius and Crassus
for the same period. The Lex was proposed by the Tribune Titus
Trebonius (Livius, _Epitome_, 105; Dion Cassius, 39. c. 33).]

[Footnote 54: C. Ateius Capito Gallus and his brother tribune P.
Aquillius Gallius were strong opponents of Pompeius and Crassus at
this critical time. Crassus left Rome for his Parthian campaign at the
close of B.C. 55, before the expiration of his consulship (Clinton,
_Fasti_, B.C. 54).]

[Footnote 55: We learn that Crassus sailed from Brundisium (Brindisi),
the usual place of embarkation for Asia, but we are told nothing more
of his course till we find him in Galatia, talking to old Deiotarus.]

[Footnote 56: Zenodotia or Zenodotium, a city of the district
Osrhoene, and near the town of Nikephorium. These were Greek cities
founded by the Macedonians. I have mistranslated the first part of
this passage of Plutarch from not referring at the time to Dion
Cassius (40. c. 13) who tells the story thus:--"The inhabitants of
Zenodotium sent for some of the Romans, pretending that they intended
to join them like the rest; but when the men were within the city,
they cut off their retreat and killed them; and this was the reason
why their city was destroyed." The literal version of Plutarch's text
will be the true one. "But in one of them, of which Apollonius was
tyrant, a hundred of his soldiers were put to death, upon," &c.]

[Footnote 57: This was his son Publius, who is often mentioned in
Cæsar's Gallic War.]

[Footnote 58: See Life of Lucullus, c. 22.]

[Footnote 59: Hierapolis or the 'Holy City' was also called Bambyke
and Edessa. Strabo places it four schoeni from the west bank of the
Euphrates. The goddess who was worshipped here was called Atargatis or
Astarte. Lucian speaks of the goddess and her temple and ceremonial in
his treatise 'On the Syrian Goddess' (iii. p. 451, ed. Hemsterhuis).
Lucian had visited the place. Josephus adds (_Jewish Antiq._ xiv. 7)
that Crassus stripped the temple of Jerusalem of all its valuables to
the amount of ten thousand talents. The winter occupation of the Roman
general was more profitable than his campaign the following year
turned out.]

[Footnote 60: This was a general name of the Parthian kings, and
probably was used as a kind of title. The dynasty was called the
Arsakidæ. The name Arsakes occurs among the Persian names in the Persæ
of Aeschylus. Pott (_Etymologische Forschungen_, ii. 272) conjectures
that the word means 'King of the Arii,' or 'the noble King.' The
prefix _Ar_ or _Ari_ is very common in Persian names, as Ariamnes,
Ariomardus, and others.

Plutarch in other passages of the Life of Crassus calls this Arsakes,
Hyrodes, and other authorities call him Orodes. He is classed as
Arsakes XIV. Orodes I. of Parthia, by those who have attempted to form
a regular series of the Parthian kings.

Crassus replied that he would give his answer in Seleukeia, the large
city on the Tigris, which was nearly pure Greek. The later Parthian
capital was Ktesiphon, in the neighbourhood of Seleukeia, on the east
bank of the Tigris and about twenty miles from Bagdad. The foundation
of Ktesiphon is attributed by Ammianus Marcellinus (xxiii. 6, ed.
Gronov.) to Bardanes, who was a contemporary of the Roman emperor
Nero, if he is the Arsakes Bardanes who appears in the list of
Parthian kings. But Ktesiphon is mentioned by Polybius in his fifth
book, in the wars of Antiochus and Molon, and consequently it existed
in the time of Crassus, though it is not mentioned in his Life.
Ktesiphon is mentioned by Dion Cassius (40. c. 14) in his history of
the campaign of Crassus, but this alone would not prove that Ktesiphon
existed at that time.]

[Footnote 61: The Greek word here and at the beginning of ch. xix.,
translated 'mailed' by Mr. Long, always refers to cuirassed cavalry

[Footnote 62: C. Cassius Longinus, the friend of M. Junius Brutus, and
afterwards one of the assassins of the Dictator Cæsar.]

[Footnote 63: He is afterwards called Artavasdes. He was a son of the
Tigranes whom Lucullus defeated, and is called Artavasdes I. by
Saint-Martin. He is mentioned again in Plutarch's Life of M. Antonius.
c. 39, 50.]

[Footnote 64: Zeugma means the Bridge. Seleukus Nikator is said to
have established a bridge of boats here, in order to connect the
opposite bank with Apameia, a city which he built on the east side of
the Euphrates (Plinius, _Hist. Nat._ v. 24). Zeugma afterwards was a
usual place for crossing the river; but a bridge of boats could hardly
be permanently kept there, and it appears that Crassus had to
construct a raft. Zeugma is either upon or near the site of Bir, which
is in about 37° N. Lat.]

[Footnote 65: Probably these great hurricanes are not uncommon on the
Euphrates. In the year 1831 a gale sent Colonel Chesney's "little
vessel to the bottom of the river;" but a still greater calamity befel
the Tigris steamer in the Euphrates expedition which was under the
command of Colonel Chesney, in May 1836. A little after one P.M. a
storm appeared bringing with it clouds of sand from the
west-north-west. The two steam-boats the Tigris and the Euphrates were
then passing over the rocks of Es-Geria, which were deeply covered
with water. The Euphrates was safely secured; but the Tigris, being
directed against the bank, struck with great violence; the wind
suddenly veered round and drove her bow off; "this rendered it quite
impossible to secure the vessel to the bank, along which she was blown
rapidly by the heavy gusts; her head falling off into the stream as
she passed close to the Euphrates, which vessel had been backed
opportunely to avoid the concussion." The Tigris perished in this
violent hurricane and twenty men were lost in her. The storm lasted
about eight minutes. Colonel Chesney escaped by swimming to the shore
just before the vessel went down: he was fortunate "to take a
direction which brought him to the land, without having seen anything
whatever to guide him through the darkness worse than that of
night."--"For an instant," says Colonel Chesney after getting to land,
"I saw the keel of the Tigris uppermost (near the stern); she went
down bow foremost, and having struck the bottom in that position, she
probably turned round on the bow as a pivot, and thus showed part of
her keel for an instant at the other extremity; but her paddle beams,
floats, and parts of the sides were already broken up, and actually
floated ashore, so speedy and terrific had been the work of
destruction." (Letter from Colonel Chesney to Sir J. Hobhouse, 28th
May, 1836; Euphrates Expedition Papers printed by order of the House
of Commons, 17th July, 1837.)

Ammianus Marcellinus (xxiv. 1) speaks of a violent storm at Anatha
(Annah) on the Euphrates, during the expedition of the Emperor Julian.
It blew down the tents and stretched the soldiers on the ground.]

[Footnote 66: A place struck with lightning was considered religious
(religiosus), that is, it could no longer be used for common purposes.
"The deity," says Festus (v. _Fulguritum_), "was supposed to have
appropriated it to himself."

Dion Cassius (40. c. 17, &c.) gives the story of the passage of the
river. The eagle, according to him, was very obstinate. It stuck fast
in the ground, as if it was planted there; and when it was forced up
by the soldiers, it went along very unwillingly.

The Roman eagle was fixed at one end of a long shaft of wood, which
had a sharp point at the other end for the purpose of fixing it in the
ground. The eagle was gold, or gilded metal; and, according to Dion
Cassius, it was kept in a small moveable case or consecrated chapel.
The eagle was not moved from the winter encampment, unless the whole
army was put in motion. The Vexilla ([Greek: sêmeia] σημεῖα of the
Greek writers) were what we call the colours.

(See the note of Reimarus on Dion Cassius, 40. c. 18.)]

[Footnote 67: Dion Cassius (40. c. 20), who tells the story, names the
man Augarus. See the note of Reimarus.]

[Footnote 68: This is the translation of Plutarch's word [Greek:
pelatês] πελάτης, which word [Greek: pelatês] πελάτης is used by the
Greek writers on Roman history to express the Latin Cliens. It is not
here supposed that Parthian clients were the same as Roman clients;
but as Plutarch uses the word to express a certain condition among the
Parthians, which was not that of slavery, it is proper to retain his
word in the translation.]

[Footnote 69: This "very Hyrodes" and his brother Mithridates are said
to have murdered their father Arsakes XII. Phraates III., who is
spoken of in the Life of Lucullus. The two brothers quarrelled.
Mithridates is mentioned by some authorities as the immediate
successor of his father under the title of Arsakes XIII. Mithridates
III. Mithridates was besieged in Babylon by Hyrodes; and Mithridates,
after surrendering to his brother, was put to death. (Dion Cassius,
39. c. 56; Appian, _On the Affairs of Syria_, c. 51; Justinus, xlii.

[Footnote 70: This river is probably the same as the Bilecha, now the
Belejik, a small stream which joins the Euphrates on the left bank at
Racca, the old Nikephorium. This river is mentioned by Isidorus of
Charax and by Ammianus Marcellinus (xxiii. c. 3), who calls it

[Footnote 71: Plutarch seems to mean something like drums furnished
with bells or rattles; but his description is not very clear, and the
passage may be rendered somewhat differently from what I have rendered
it: "but they have instruments to beat upon ([Greek: rhoptra] ῥόπτρα),
made of skin, and hollow, which they stretch round brass sounders"
([Greek: êcheiois] ἠχείοις, whatever the word may mean here). The word
[Greek: rhoptron] ῥόπτρον properly means a thing to strike with; but
it seems to have another meaning here. (See Passow's _Greek Lexicon_.)
The context seems to show that a drum is meant.]

[Footnote 72: Margiana was a country east of the Caspian, the position
of which seems to be determined by the Murg-aub river, the ancient
Margus. Hyrcania joined it on the west. Strabo (p. 516) describes
Margiana as a fertile plain surrounded by deserts. He says nothing of
its iron. Plinius (_Hist. Nat._ vi. 16) says that Orodes carried off
the Romans who were captured at the time of the defeat of Crassus, to
Antiochia, in Margiana.]

[Footnote 73: So Xenophon (_Cyropædia_, i. 3. 2) represents King
Astyages. The king also wore a wig or false locks.]

[Footnote 74: The peculiarity of the Parthian warfare made a lasting
impression on the Romans; and it is often alluded to by the Latin

     Fidentemque fuga Parthum versisque sagittis.

     Virgil, _Georgic_ iii. 31.


[Footnote 75: In reading the chapter, it must be remembered that
Publius is young Crassus. If there is any apparent confusion between
the father and son, it will be removed by reading carefully. I have
chosen to translate Plutarch, not to mend him.]

[Footnote 76: The reading of this passage in Appian (_Parthica_, c.
29) is [Greek: telmasin entuchontes] τέλμασιν ἐντυχόντες, which
Sintenis has adopted. The common reading is [Greek: suntagmasin
entuchontes] συντάγμασιν ἐντυχόντες, which various critics variously

[Footnote 77: In the old Latin translation of Guarini, the name Cn.
Plancus occurs in place of Megabacchus. Kaltwasser conjectures that
Megabacchus was a Greek, but the context implies that he was a Roman.
Orelli (_Onomastic._ C. Megaboccus) takes him to be the person
mentioned by Cicero (_Ad Attic._ ii. 7), which Gronovius had already
observed, and again by Cicero, _Pro Scauro_, c. 2.]

[Footnote 78: Censorinus was a cognomen of the Marcia Gens, and
several of the name are mentioned in the history of Rome; but this
Censorinus does not appear to be otherwise known.]

[Footnote 79: Carrhæ was a Mesopotamian town, south of Orfa or Edessa,
and about 37° N. lat. It is supposed to be the Haran of Genesis (xi.

[Footnote 80: Ichnæ was a town on the Bilecha, south of Carrhæ. Dion
Cassias (40. c. 12) calls it Ichniæ, and adds that Crassus before
taking Nikephorium had been defeated by Talymenus Eilakes. Eilakes is
probably a blunder in the copies of Dion; and it is conjectured that
he is the Sillakes mentioned by Plutarch (c. 21), Appian, and Orosius
(vi. 3).]

[Footnote 81: The death of young Crassus, and the subsequent
misfortunes of the Romans, are described by Dion Cassius, 40. c. 21,

[Footnote 82: Or Egnatius. He is called Gnatius by Appian.]

[Footnote 83: Cassius escaped to Syria, which he successfully defended
against the invading Parthians, who lost their commander, Osakes.
(Dion Cassius. 40. c. 28, 29; Cicero, _Ad Attic._ v. 20; Orosius, vi.

Cicero was proconsul of Cilicia during the Parthian invasion of Syria
B.C. 51.]

[Footnote 84: Sinnaca is mentioned by Strabo p. 747, but he says
nothing which enables us to fix its position. If Plutarch's narrative
is correct; it was not far from Carrhæ; and Carrhæ was considered by
the Romans to be the scene of the death of Crassus, probably because
it was the nearest known place to the spot where he fell.]

[Footnote 85: 'The river' is the Euphrates.]

[Footnote 86: The stories about the death of Crassus varied, as we
might suppose. Dion Cassius (40. c. 27) remarks that, according to one
version of the story, Crassus was badly wounded, and was killed by one
of his own people to prevent him from being taken alive. He adds that
the chief part of the army of Crassus made their escape.]

[Footnote 87: The story of molten gold being poured into the mouth of
the head of Crassus is given by Dion Cassius as a report. Floras (iii.
11) has the same story; and he says that it was the right hand of
Crassus which was sent to the king, as we might conjecture it would
be, if only one was sent.]

[Footnote 88: Kaltwasser asks, "Was this perchance intended as an
allusion to the avarice of Crassus, as the female dress was intended
to refer to his cowardice?" The probable answer is Yes.]

[Footnote 89: As this was a Greek town, it had a Greek constitution,
and was governed by a body which the Romans called a Senate. The
Senate of Seleukeia is mentioned by Tacitus (_Annal._ vi. 42):
"Trecenti opibus, aut sapientia delecti, ut Senatus: sua populo vis;
et quoties concordes agunt, spernitur Parthus."]

[Footnote 90: This Aristeides wrote lewd stories called Milesiaca, of
which there were several books. They were translated into Latin by the
historian L. Cornelius Sisenna, a contemporary of Sulla. It is not
said whether the original or the translation formed a part of the camp
furniture of this unworthy Roman soldier. The work of Aristeides was
known to Ovidius (_Tristia,_ ii. 413, 443), who attempts to defend his
own amatory poetry by the example of Sisenna, who translated an
obscene book.]

[Footnote 91: Probably there is an error in the name: Roscius has been
proposed as the probable reading.]

[Footnote 92: Plutarch is alluding to the fable of the two wallets,
which every man carries, one in front with his neighbours' faults in
it, and the other behind containing his own. Phædrus (iv. 10, ed.
Orelli) has pithily told the apologue:--

    Peras imposuit Iuppiter nobis duas:
    Propriis repletam vitiis post tergum dedit,
    Alienis ante pectus suspendit gravem.
    Hac re videre nostra mala non possumus:
    Alii simul delinquunt, censores sumus.

    Two wallets Juppiter has placed upon us:
    Our own faults fill the bag we bear behind,
    Our neighbour's heavy wallet hangs in front.
    And so we cannot see our own ill deeds;
    But if another trips, forthwith we censure.


[Footnote 93: This word means a thick stick; and a snake of like

[Footnote 94: Greek adventurers were always making their way to the
courts of these barbarous Asiatic kings to serve in the capacity of
physicians, mountebanks, or impostors of some kind. Several instances
are mentioned by Herodotus. Tralles was a considerable town near the
west coast of Asia Minor, from which this actor came.]

[Footnote 95: Pentheus, king of Thebes, son of Agave; would not
recognise the divinity of Bacchus, whereupon Bacchus infuriated the
women, and among them Agave, who killed her own son. She is introduced
in the Bacchæ with his head in her hand, exulting over the slaughter
of the supposed wild beast.

The passage which is cited is from the Bacchæ of Euripides, v. 1168,
ed. Elmsley. The exact meaning of the word [Greek: helika] ἕλικα in
the passage is uncertain. See Elmsley's note.]

[Footnote 96: The word is Exodium ([Greek: exodion] ἐξόδιον), a kind
of entertainment common among the Romans, though it is a Greek word.
Plutarch means that this exhibition before the kings was like the
farce which is acted after a tragedy. It seems as if Jason was first
playing the part of Agave, and was then going to play that of
Pentheus; but on seeing the head he put aside the mask and dress of
Pentheus, and recited the words of the frantic mother. Plutarch
sometimes leaves things in a kind of mist: he gives his reader
opportunity for conjecture.]

[Footnote 97: Pacorus was completely defeated B.C. 38 near the
Euphrates by P. Ventidius Bassus, who was the legatus of M. Antonius.
Pacorus lost his life in the battle (Dion Cassius, 49. c. 20;
Plutarch, _Life of Antonius_, c. 34). It is said that Pacorus fell on
the same day on which Crassus lost his life fifteen years before, the
9th of June (Dion Cassius, 49. c. 21, and the note of Reimarus).]

[Footnote 98: He began his reign under the name of Arsakes XV.
Phraates IV., according to some authorities, B.C. 37. He was not
satisfied with murdering his father: he murdered his brothers, and
many distinguished Parthians. His name occurs again in Plutarch's Life
of Antonius. Phraates delivered up to Augustus, B.C. 20, the Roman
soldiers, eagles, and standards which had been taken by Crassus; an
event which is commemorated by extant medals, and was recorded by
Augustus among his other exploits in the Monumentum Ancyranum.]

[Footnote 99: This is the Greek word ([Greek: akoniton] ὰκόνιτον): the
same name is now given to Monkshood or Wolfsbane, a genus of
Ranunculaceae. Aconite is now used as a medicine; "The best forms are
either an alcoholic extract of the leaves, or an alcoholic tincture of
the root made by displacement." It is a poisonous plant, and death has
followed from the careless use of it ("Aconite," _Penny Cyclopædia_
and _Supplement_ to the _P. Cyc._).

With this farce, as Plutarch remarks, the history of Crassus
terminates. If Plutarch designed to make Crassus contemptible, he has
certainly succeeded. And there is nothing in other authorities to
induce us to think that he has done Crassus injustice. With some good
qualities and his moderate abilities, he might have been a respectable
man in a private station. But insatiable avarice, and that curse of
many men, ambition without the ability that can ensure success and
command respect, made Crassus a fool in his old age, and brought him
to an ignominious end.]


I. In the first place, the wealth of Nikias was much more honestly and
creditably obtained than that of Crassus. Generally speaking, one
cannot approve of men who make their money from mines, which are as a
rule worked by criminals, or savages, labouring in chains in unhealthy
subterranean dungeons; but yet this method of amassing a fortune seems
much the more honourable, when compared with Crassus's purchase of
confiscated lands and his habit of bidding for houses that were on
fire. Crassus too used to practise these openly, like a trade: while
he was also accused of taking bribes for his speeches in the Senate,
of defrauding the allies of Rome, of currying favour with great ladies
and assisting them to shield offenders from justice. Nothing of this
sort was ever laid to the charge of Nikias, who, however, was
ridiculed for giving money to common informers because he feared their
tongues. Yet this action of his, though it would have been a disgrace
to Perikles, or Aristeides, was a necessity for Nikias, who was
naturally of a timid disposition. Thus Lykurgus the orator excused
himself when accused of having bought off some informers who
threatened him. "I am glad," said he, "that after so long a public
life as mine I should have been at last convicted of giving bribes
rather than of receiving them."

The expenditure of Nikias was all calculated to increase his
popularity in the state, being devoted to offerings to the gods,
gymnastic contests and public dramatic performances. But all the money
he spent that way, and all that he possessed was but a small part of
what Crassus bestowed upon a public feast at Rome for some tens of
thousands of guests, whom he even maintained at his own cost for some
time after. So true it is that wickedness and vice argue a want of
due balance and proportion in a man's mind, which leads him to acquire
wealth dishonestly, and then to squander it uselessly.

II. So much for their riches. Now in their political life, Nikias
never did anything bold, daring or unjust, for he was outwitted by
Alkibiades, and always stood in fear of the popular assembly. Crassus,
on the other hand, is accused of great inconsistency, in lightly
changing from one party to another, and he himself never denied that
he once obtained the consulship by hiring men to assassinate Cato and
Domitius. And in the assembly held for the dividing for the provinces,
many were wounded and four men slain in the Forum, while Crassus
himself (which I have forgotten to mention in his Life) struck one
Lucius Annalius, a speaker on the other side, so violent a blow with
his fist that his face was covered with blood. But though Crassus was
overbearing and tyrannical in his public life, yet we cannot deny that
the shrinking timidity and cowardice of Nikias deserve equally severe
censure; and it must be remembered that when Crassus was carrying
matters with so high a hand, it was no Kleon or Hyperbolus that he had
for an antagonist, but the great Julius Cæsar himself, and Pompeius
who had triumphed three several times, and that he gave way to neither
of them, but became their equal in power, and even excelled Pompeius
in dignity by obtaining the office of censor. A great politician
should not try to avoid unpopularity, but to gain such power and
reputation as will enable him to rise above it.

Yet if it were true that Nikias preferred quiet and security to
anything else, and that he stood in fear of Alkibiades in the
assembly, of the Spartans at Pylus, and of Perdikkas in Thrace, he had
every opportunity to repose himself in Athens and to "weave the
garland of a peaceful life," as some philosopher calls it. He had
indeed a true and divine love of peace, and his attempt to bring the
Peloponnesian war to an end, was an act of real Hellenic patriotism.
In this respect Crassus cannot be compared with Nikias, not though he
had carried the frontier of the Roman empire as far as the Caspian and
the Indian seas.

III. Yet a statesman, in a country which appreciates his merits,
ought not when at the height of his power to make way for worthless
men, and place in office those who have no claim to it, as Nikias did
when he laid down his own office of commander-in-chief and gave it to
Kleon, a man who possessed no qualification whatever for the post
except his brazen effrontery. Neither can I praise Crassus for having
so rashly and hurriedly brought the war with Spartacus to a crisis,
although he was actuated by an honourable ambition in fearing that
Pompeius would arrive and take from him the glory of having completed
the war, as Mummius took from Marcellus the glory of winning Corinth.
But on the other hand the conduct of Nikias was altogether monstrous
and inexcusable. He did not give up his honourable post to his enemy
at a time when there was hope of success and little peril. He saw that
great danger was likely to be incurred by the general in command at
Pylus, and yet he was content to place himself in safety, and let the
state run the risk of ruin, by entrusting an incompetent person with
the sole management of affairs. Yet Themistokles, rather than allow an
ignorant commander to mismanage the war against Persia, bribed him to
lay down his office. So also Cato at a most dangerous crisis became a
candidate for the office of tribune of the people in order to serve
his country. But Nikias, reserving himself to play the general at the
expense of the village of Minoa, the island of Kythera, and the
miserable inhabitants of Melos,[100] when it came to fighting the
Lacedæmonians eagerly stripped off his general's cloak, and entrusted
to an inexperienced and reckless man like Kleon, the conduct of an
enterprise involving the safety of a large Athenian fleet and army,
showing himself no less neglectful of his own honour than he was of
the interests of his country. After this he was forced against his
will into the war with Syracuse, in which he seems to have imagined
that his army would capture the city by remaining before it doing
nothing, and not by vigorous attacks. No doubt it is a great testimony
to the esteem in which he was held by his countrymen, that he was
always opposed to war and unwilling to act as general, and was
nevertheless always forced by them to undertake that office: whereas
Crassus, who always wished for an independent command, never obtained
one except in the servile war, and then only because all the other
generals, Pompeius, Metellus, and Lucullus, were absent. Yet at that
time Crassus was at the height of his power and reputation: but his
friends seem to have thought him, as the comic poet has it,

     "Most excellent, save in the battle-field."

And in his case also, the Romans gained no advantage from his
ambitious desire of command. The Athenians sent Nikias to Sicily
against his will, and Crassus led the Romans to Parthia against their
will. Nikias suffered by the actions of the Athenians, while Rome
suffered by the actions of Crassus.

IV. However, in their last moments we incline rather to praise Nikias
than to blame Crassus. Nikias, a skilful and experienced commander,
did not share the rash hopes of his countrymen, but never thought that
Sicily could be conquered, and dissuaded them from making the attempt.
Crassus, on the other hand, urged the Romans to undertake the war with
Parthia, representing the conquest of that country as an easy
operation, which he nevertheless failed to effect. His ambition was
vast. Cæsar had conquered the Gauls, Germans, Britons, and all the
west of Europe, and Crassus wished in his turn to march eastward as
far as the Indian Ocean, and to conquer all those regions of Asia
which Pompeius and Lucullus, two great men and actuated by a like
desire for conquest, had previously aspired to subdue. Yet they also
met with a like opposition. When Pompeius was given an unlimited
command in the East, the appointment was opposed by the Senate, and
when Cæsar routed thirty thousand Germans, Cato proposed that he
should be delivered up to the vanquished, and that thus the anger of
the gods should be turned away from the city upon the author of so
great a crime as he had committed by breaking his word. Yet the Romans
slighted Cato's proposals and held a solemn thanksgiving for fifteen
days to show their joy at the news. How many days then must we imagine
they would have spent in rejoicing if Crassus had sent despatches
announcing the capture of Babylon, and then had reduced Media, Persia,
Hyrkania, Susa, and Bactria to the condition of Roman provinces. "If a
man must do wrong," as Euripides says of those who cannot live in
peace, and be contented when they are well off, they should do it on a
grand scale like this, not capture contemptible places like Skandeia
or Mende, or chase the people of Ægina, like birds who have been
turned out of their nests. If we are to do an injustice, let us not do
it in a miserable pettifogging way, but imitate such great examples as
Crassus and Alexander the Great. Those who praise the one of these
great men, and blame the other, do so only because they are unable to
see any other distinction between them except that the one failed and
the other succeeded.

V. When acting as general, Nikias did many great exploits, for he was
many times victorious, all but took Syracuse, and ought not justly to
bear the blame of the whole Sicilian disaster, because of his disease,
and the ill will which some bore him at Athens. Crassus on the other
hand committed so many mistakes as to put it out of the power of
fortune to aid him, so that one wonders not so much that his folly was
overcome by the Parthians as that it could overcome the good fortune
of the Romans. Now as the one never disregarded religious observances
and omens, the other despised them all, and yet both alike perished,
it is hard to say what inference we ought to draw, as to which acted
most wisely, yet we must incline rather to the side of him who
followed the established rule in such matters rather than that of him
who insolently discarded all such observances. In his death Crassus is
more to be commended, because he yielded himself against his will in
consequence of the entreaties of his friends, and was most
treacherously deceived by the enemy, while Nikias delivered himself up
to his enemies through a base and cowardly desire to save his life,
and thus made his end more infamous.


[Footnote 100: I cannot find that Nikias took any part in the massacre
of the people of Melos in 416 B.C.]


I. It is perhaps not a matter of surprise, if in the lapse of time,
which is unlimited, while fortune[101] is continually changing her
course, spontaneity should often result in the same incidents; for, if
the number of elemental things is not limited, fortune has in the
abundance of material a bountiful supply of sameness of results; and,
if things are implicated in a dependence upon definite numbers, it is
of necessity that the same things must often happen, being effected by
the same means. Now, as some are pleased to collect, by inquiry and
hearsay, from among the things which accidentally happen, such as
bear some likeness to the works of calculation and forethought: such,
for instance, as that there were two celebrated Atteis,[102] the one a
Syrian and the other an Arcadian, and that both were killed by a wild
boar; that there were two Actæons, one of whom was torn in pieces by
his dogs and the other by his lovers; that there were two
Scipios,[103] by one of whom the Carthaginians were first conquered,
and by the other were cut up root and branch; that Troy was taken by
Hercules, on account of the horses of Laomedon, and by Agamemnon by
means of the wooden horse, as it is called, and was taken a third time
by Charidemus, by reason of the Ilians not being able to close the
gates quick enough, owing to a horse having got between them; that
there are two cities which have the same name with the most fragrant
of plants, Ios[104] and Smyrna, and that Homer was born in one of them
and died in the other: I may be allowed to add to these instances,
that the most warlike of commanders and those who have accomplished
most by a union of daring and cunning, have been one-eyed men,
Philippus,[105] Antigonus, Annibal, and the subject of this
Life--Sertorius; he whom one may affirm to have been more continent as
to women than Philip, more true to his friends than Antigonus, more
merciful to his enemies than Annibal,[106] inferior in understanding
to none of them, but in fortune inferior to all; and, though he always
found Fortune more hard to deal with than his open enemies, yet he
proved himself her equal by opposing the experience of Metellus, the
daring of Pompeius, the fortune of Sulla, and the power of the whole
Roman state; a fugitive and a stranger putting himself at the head of
barbarians. Of all the Greeks, Eumenes[107] of Kardia presents the
nearest resemblance to him. Both of them were men qualified to
command; both were warlike, and yet full of stratagem; both became
exiles from their native land and the commanders of foreign troops;
and both had the same violent and unjust fortune in their end, for
both of them were the objects of conspiracy, and were cut off by the
hands of those with whom they were victorious over their enemies.

II. Quintus Sertorius belonged to a family not among the meanest in
Nussa,[108] a Sabine city. He was carefully brought up by a widowed
mother, for he had lost his father, and he appears to have been
exceedingly attached to her. His mother's name, they say, was Rhea. He
had a competent practical education in the courts of justice, and, as
a young man, he attained some influence in the city by his eloquence.
But his reputation and success in war diverted all his ambition in
that direction.

III. Now, first of all, after the Cimbri and Teutones had invaded
Gaul, he was serving under Cæpio[109] at the time when the Romans were
defeated and put to flight; and, though he lost his horse and was
wounded in the body, he crossed the Rhone swimming in his cuirass and
with his shield against the powerful stream--so strong was his body
and disciplined by exercise. On a second occasion, when the same
barbarians were advancing with many thousand men and dreadful threats,
so that for a Roman to stand to his ranks at such a time, and to obey
his general, was a great matter, Marius had the command, and Sertorius
undertook to be a spy upon the enemy. Putting on a Celtic dress, and
making himself master of the most ordinary expressions of the
language, for the purpose of conversation when occasion might offer,
he mingled with the barbarians, and, either by his own eyes or by
inquiry, learning all that was important to know, he returned to
Marius. For this he obtained the prize of merit; and in the rest of
the campaign, having given many proofs of his judgment and daring, he
was honoured and trusted by his general. After the close of the war
with the Cimbri and Teutones, he was sent as tribune by Didius[110]
the prætor to Iberia, and he wintered in Castlo,[111] a city of the
Celtiberi. The soldiers, being in the midst of abundance, lost all
discipline, and were generally drunk, which brought them into contempt
with the barbarians, who, by night, sent for aid from their neighbours
the Gyrisœni, and, coming on the soldiers in their lodgings, began to
slaughter them. Sertorius with a few others stole out, and, collecting
the soldiers who made their escape, surrounded the city. Finding the
gates open through which the barbarians had secretly entered, he did
not make the same mistake that they did, but he set a watch there,
and, hemming in the city on all sides, he massacred every man who was
of age to bear arms. When the massacre was over, he ordered all his
soldiers to lay down their own armour and dress, and, putting on those
of the barbarians, to follow him to the city from which the men came
who had fallen on them in the night. The barbarians were deceived by
the armour, and he found the gates open, and a number of men expecting
to meet friends and fellow-citizens, returning from a successful
expedition. Accordingly, most of them were killed by the Romans near
the gates, and the rest surrendered and were sold as slaves.

IV. This made the name of Sertorius known in Iberia; and as soon as he
returned to Rome he was appointed quæstor in Gaul upon the Padus at a
critical time; for the Marsic[112] war was threatening. Being
commissioned to levy troops and procure arms, he applied so much zeal
and expedition to the work, compared with the tardiness and indolence
of the other young men, that he got the reputation of being a man
likely to run an active career. Yet he remitted nothing of the daring
of a soldier after he was promoted to the rank of commander; but he
exhibited wonderful feats of courage, and exposed himself without any
reserve to danger, whereby he lost one of his eyes through a wound.
But he always prided himself on this. He used to say that others did
not always carry about with them the proofs of their valour, but put
them aside, at times, as chains and spears, and crowns, while the
proofs of his valour always abided with him, and those who saw what he
had lost saw at the same time the evidences of his courage. The people
also showed him appropriate marks of respect; for, on his entering the
theatre, they received him with clapping of hands and expressions of
their good wishes--testimonials which even those who were far advanced
in age, and high in rank, could with difficulty obtain. However, when
he was a candidate for the tribuneship, Sulla raised a party against
him, and he failed; and this was, apparently, the reason why he hated
Sulla. But when Marius was overpowered by Sulla and fled from Rome,
and Sulla had set out to fight with Mithridates, and the consul
Octavius adhered to the party of Sulla, while his colleague Cinna, who
aimed at a revolution, revived the drooping faction of Marius,
Sertorius attached himself to Cinna, especially as he saw that
Octavius was deficient in activity, and he distrusted the friends of
Marius. A great battle was fought in the Forum between the consuls, in
which Octavius got the victory, and Cinna and Sertorius took to
flight, having lost nearly ten thousand men. However, they persuaded
most of the troops, which were still scattered about Italy, to come
over to their side, and they were soon a match for Octavius.

V. When Marius had returned from Libya, and was proposing to join
Cinna, himself in a mere private capacity and Cinna as consul, all the
rest thought it politic to receive him; but Sertorius was against it:
whether it was because he thought that Cinna would pay less respect to
him when a general of higher reputation was present, or because he
feared the ferocious temper of Marius, and that he would put all in
confusion in his passion, which knew no bounds, transgressing the
limits of justice in the midst of victory. However this may be,
Sertorius observed that there remained little for them to do, as they
were now triumphant; but if they received the proposal of Marius, he
would appropriate to himself all the glory and all the troops, being a
man who could endure no partner in power, and who was devoid of good
faith. Cinna replied that what Sertorius suggested was true, but he
felt ashamed and had a difficulty about refusing to receive Marius,
after having invited him to join their party; whereupon Sertorius
rejoined: "For my part, I thought that Marius had come to Italy on his
own adventure, and I was merely considering what was best; but it was
not honourable in you to make the thing a matter of deliberation at
all after the arrival of the man whom you had thought proper to
invite, but you ought to have employed him and received him; for a
promise leaves no room for any further consideration." Accordingly
Cinna sent for Marius, and the forces being distributed among them,
the three had the command. The war being finished, Cinna and Marius
were filled with violence and bitterness, so that they made the evils
of war as precious gold to the Romans, compared with the new state of
affairs. Sertorius alone is said to have put no person to death to
gratify his vengeance, nor to have abused his power; but he was much
annoyed at the conduct of Marius, and he moderated Cinna by private
interviews and entreaties. At last, the slaves whom Marius had used as
allies in war, and kept as guards to protect his tyranny, becoming
formidable and wealthy, partly from the grants of Marius and his
direct permission; partly from their violent and outrageous treatment
of their masters, whom they butchered, and then lay with their
masters' wives, and violated their children, Sertorius unable to
endure any longer, speared the whole of them in their camp, to the
number of four thousand.[113] VI. But when Marius[114] had died, and
Cinna shortly after was cut off, and the younger Marius, contrary to
the wish of Sertorius, and by illegal means, obtained the consulship,
and the Carbos and the Norbani and Scipios were unsuccessfully
contending against Sulla on his march to Rome, and affairs were being
ruined, partly through the cowardice and laziness of the commanders,
and partly through treachery; and there was no use in his staying to
see things still go on badly, owing to the want of judgment in those
who had more power than himself; and finally, when Sulla, after
encamping near Scipio, and holding out friendly proposals, as if peace
was going to be made, had corrupted the army, though Sertorius had
warned Scipio of this, and given his advice, but without
effect--altogether despairing about the city, Sertorius set out for
Iberia, in order that if he should anticipate his enemies in
strengthening his power there, he might offer protection to such of
his friends as were unfortunate at Rome. Sertorius, having fallen in
with bad weather in the mountainous parts, was required by the
barbarians to pay them a tribute, and to purchase a free passage. His
companions were much incensed at this, and declared it to be a great
degradation for a Roman proconsul[115] to pay a tribute to wretched
barbarians; but Sertorius cared little for what they considered
disgrace, and he said that he was buying time, the rarest of things
for a man who was aiming at great objects: and so he pacified the
barbarians with money, and hurrying into Iberia, got possession of the
country. He there found nations strong in numbers and fighting men,
but owing to the greediness and tyranny of the governors who had from
time to time been sent among them, ill-disposed to the Roman
administration in general; however, he regained the good will of the
chiefs by his personal intercourse with them, and the favour of the
mass by remission of taxes. But he got most popularity by relieving
the people from having soldiers quartered on them; for he compelled
the soldiers to fix their winter tents in the suburbs of the towns,
and he was the first to set the example. However, Sertorius did not
depend altogether on the attachment of the barbarians, but he armed
all the Roman settlers in Iberia who were able to bear arms, and by
commencing the construction of all kinds of military engines and
building ships he kept the cities in check; showing himself mild in
all the affairs of civil administration, but formidable by his
preparations against the enemy.

VII. Hearing that Sulla was master of Rome,[116] and that the party of
Marius and Carbo was on the wane, and being in immediate expectation
of an army coming to fight against him under some commander, he sent
Julius Salinator to occupy the passes of the Pyrenees, with six
thousand heavy armed soldiers. Shortly after this, Caius Annius[117]
was sent from Rome by Sulla; but, seeing that the position of Julius
could not be attacked, he was perplexed, and seated himself at the
base of the mountains. But one Calpurnius, named Lanarius,
assassinated Julius, on which the soldiers left the summits of the
Pyrenees, and Annius, crossing the mountains, advanced with a large
force and drove all before him. Sertorius, being unable to oppose him,
fled with three thousand men to New Carthage,[118] and there embarking
and crossing the sea, landed in Mauritania, in Libya. His soldiers,
while getting water without due precautions, were fallen upon by the
barbarians, and many of them were killed, upon which Sertorius sailed
again for Iberia. He was, however, driven off the coast, and, being
joined by some Cilician piratical vessels,[119] he attacked the
island of Pityussa,[120] and landing there drove out the garrison of
Annius. Annius soon arrived with a large fleet and five thousand heavy
armed men, and Sertorius ventured on a naval battle with him, though
his vessels were light and built for quick sailing and not for
fighting; but the sea was disturbed by a strong west wind, which drove
most of the vessels of Sertorius upon the reefs, owing to their
lightness, and Sertorius, with a few ships, could not get out to sea
by reason of the wind, nor land on account of the enemy, and being
tossed about for ten days, with the wind and a violent sea against
him, he held out with great difficulty.

VIII. As the wind abated he set sail, and put in at some scattered
islands, which had no water. Leaving them, and passing through the
Straits of Gades,[121] he touched at those parts of Iberia on the
right which lie out of the strait, a little beyond the mouths of the
Bætis,[122] which flows into the Atlantic Sea,[123] and has given name
to those parts of Iberia which lie about it. There he fell in with
some sailors, who had returned from a voyage to the Atlantic[124]
Islands, which are two in number, separated by a very narrow channel,
and ten thousand stadia from the coast of Libya, and are called the
islands of the Happy. These islands have only moderate rains, but
generally they enjoy gentle breezes, which bring dews; they have a
rich and fertile soil, adapted for arable cultivation and planting;
they also produce fruit spontaneously, sufficient in quantity and
quality to maintain, without labour and trouble, a population at their
ease. The air of the island is agreeable, owing to the temperature of
the seasons, and the slightness of the changes; for the winds which
blow from our part of the world from the north and east, owing to the
great distance, fall upon a boundless space, and are dispersed and
fail before they reach these islands; but the winds which blow round
them from the ocean, the south and west, bring soft rains at
intervals, from the sea, but in general they gently cool the island
with moist clear weather, and nourish the plants; so that a firm
persuasion has reached the barbarians that here are the Elysian Plains
and the abode of the Happy which Homer[125] has celebrated in song.

IX. Sertorius, hearing this description, was seized with a strong
desire to dwell in the islands, and to live in quiet, free from
tyranny and never-ending wars. The Cilicians, who did not want peace
and leisure, but wealth and spoil, observing this inclination, sailed
off to Africa, to restore Ascalis, the son of Iphtha, to the Moorish
kingdom.[126] Sertorius, however, did not despond, but he determined
to help those who were fighting against Ascalis, in order that his
companions, by getting some renewal of hope and opportunity for other
deeds, might not disperse through their difficulties. The Moors were
well pleased at his arrival, and Sertorius setting himself to work
defeated Ascalis, and besieged him. Sulla sent Paccianus to help
Ascalis, but Sertorius engaging him with his forces killed Paccianus,
and after his victory brought over the army and took Tigennis, to
which Ascalis and his brother had fled. It is here that the Libyans
say Antæus[127] is buried. Sertorius dug into the mound, as he did not
believe what the barbarians said, so enormous was the size. But,
finding the body there, sixty cubits in length, as they say, he was
confounded, and, after making a sacrifice, he piled up the earth, and
added to the repute and fame of the monument. The people of Tigennis
have a mythus, that, on the death of Antæus his wife Tinge cohabited
with Hercules, that Sophax was the issue of their connexion, and
became king of the country, and named a city after his mother; they
further say that Sophax had a son, Diodorus, whom many of the Libyan
nations submitted to, as he had a Greek army of Olbiani and Mycenæi,
who were settled in those parts by Hercules. But this may be
considered as so much flattery to Juba,[128] of all kings the most
devoted to historical inquiry; for they say that Juba's ancestors were
the descendants of Diodorus and Sophax. Sertorius, now completely
victorious, did no wrong to those who were his suppliants and trusted
to him, but he restored to them both property and cities and the
administration, receiving only what was fair and just for them to

X. While Sertorius was considering where he should betake himself to,
the Lusitani sent ambassadors to invite him to be their leader; for
they were much in want of a commander of great reputation and
experience, to oppose the formidable power of the Romans, and
Sertorius was the only man whom they would trust, as they knew his
character from those who had been about him. Now it is said that
Sertorius was a man who never yielded either to pleasure or to fear,
and while he was naturally unmoved by danger, he could bear prosperity
with moderation; in the open field he was equal to any general of his
time in enterprise, and as to all military matters that required
stealthy manœuvres, the taking advantage of strong positions and rapid
movements, and also craft and deception, he was in the moment of need
most cunning in device. In rewarding courage he was bountiful, and in
punishing for offences he was merciful. And yet, in the last part of
his life, his cruel and vindictive treatment of the hostages may be
alleged as a proof that his temper was not naturally humane, but that
he put on the appearance of mildness through calculation and as a
matter of necessity, But it is my opinion that no fortune can ever
change to the opposite character a virtue which is genuine and founded
on principle; still it is not impossible that good intentions and good
natural dispositions, when impaired by great misfortunes[129] contrary
to desert, may together with the dæmon change their habit; and this I
think was the case with Sertorius when fortune began to fail him; for
as his circumstances became unfavourable, he became harsh to those who
had done him wrong.

XI. However, he then set sail from Libya, at the invitation of the
Lusitanians,[130] and got them into fighting condition, being
immediately made commander with full powers, and he subjected the
neighbouring parts of Iberia, most of which, indeed, voluntarily
joined him, chiefly by reason of his mild treatment and his activity;
but in some cases he availed himself of cunning to beguile and win
over the people, the chief of which was in the affair of the deer,
which was after this fashion:

Spanos, a native, and one of those who lived on their lands, fell in
with a deer[131] which had just brought forth a young one and was
flying from the hunters; he missed taking the deer, but he followed
the fawn, being struck with its unusual colour (it was completely
white), and caught it. It happened that Sertorius was staying in those
parts, and when people brought him as presents anything that they had
got in hunting, or from their farms, he would readily receive it and
make a liberal return to those who showed him such attentions.
Accordingly the man brought the fawn and gave it to Sertorius, who
accepted the present. At first he took no particular pleasure in the
animal, but in course of time, when he had made it so tame and
familiar that it would come to him when he called it, accompany him in
his walks, and cared not for a crowd and all the noise of the army, by
degrees he began to give the thing a supernatural character, saying
that the fawn was a gift from Artemis (Diana), and he gave out as a
token of this that the fawn showed him many hidden things; for he knew
that it is the nature of barbarians to be easily accessible to
superstition. He also resorted to such tricks as these: whenever he
had got secret information that the enemy had invaded any part of the
country, or were attempting to draw any city away from him, he would
pretend that the deer had spoken to him in his sleep, and bid him keep
his troops in readiness; and, on the other hand, when he heard that
his generals had got a victory, he would keep the messenger concealed,
and bring forward the deer crowned with chaplets, as is usual on the
occasion of good news, and tell his men to rejoice and sacrifice to
the gods, as they would hear of some good luck.

XII. By these means he tamed the people, and had them more manageable
for all purposes, as they believed they were led, not by the counsels
of a foreigner, but by a deity, and facts also confirmed them in this
opinion, inasmuch as the power of Sertorius increased beyond all
expectation; for with the two thousand six hundred men whom he called
Romans, and four thousand Lusitanian targetiers, and seven hundred
horsemen, whom he joined to a motley band of seven hundred Libyans,
who crossed over with him to Lusitania, he fought with four Roman
generals, who had under them one hundred and twenty thousand foot
soldiers, six thousand horsemen, two thousand bowmen and slingers, and
cities innumerable, while he had only twenty cities in all under him.
But though so feeble and insignificant at first, he not only subdued
great nations, and took many cities, but of the generals who were
opposed to him he defeated Cotta[132] in a naval engagement in the
channel near Mellaria;[133] he put to flight Fufidius,[134] the
governor of Bætica, on the banks of the Bætis, with the slaughter of
two thousand of his Roman soldiers; Lucius Domitius,[135] proconsul of
the other Iberia,[136] was defeated by his quæstor; Thoranius,
another of the commanders of Metellus, who was sent with a force, he
destroyed; and on Metellus[137] himself, the greatest man among the
Romans in his day, and of the highest repute, he inflicted several
discomfitures, and brought him to such straits, that Lucius
Manlius[138] came from Narbo,[139] in Gaul, to his relief, and
Pompeius Magnus[140] was hastily despatched from Rome with an army;
for Metellus was perplexed at having to deal with a daring man, who
evaded all fighting in the open field, and could adapt himself to any
circumstances by reason of the light and easy equipment and activity
of his Iberian army; he who had been disciplined in regular battles
fought by men in full armour and commanded a heavy immovable mass of
men, who were excellently trained to thrust against their enemies,
when they came to close quarters, and to strike them down, but unable
to traverse mountains, to be kept always on the alert by the continual
pursuing and retreating of light active men, and to endure hunger like
them, and to live under the open sky without fire or tent.

XIII. Besides this, Metellus was now growing old, and after so many
great battles was somewhat inclined to an easy and luxurious mode of
life; and he was opposed to Sertorius, a man full of the vigour of
mature age, whose body was wonderfully furnished with strength,
activity, and power of endurance. He was never intoxicated with drink,
even in his seasons of relaxation, and he was accustomed to bear great
toil, long marches, and continued watchfulness, content with a little
food of the meanest quality; and, inasmuch as he was always rambling
about and hunting, when he had leisure, he became intimately
acquainted with all the spots, both impracticable and practicable,
which gave chance of escape if he had to fly, or opportunity of
hemming in an enemy if he was in pursuit. Consequently, it happened
that Metellus, being prevented from fighting, was damaged as much as
men who are beaten in battle, and Sertorius by flying had all the
advantage of the pursuer. He used to cut off the supplies of water,
and check the foraging; and when Metellus was advancing Sertorius
would get out of his way, and when he was encamped he would not let
him rest; when Metellus was occupied with a siege, Sertorius would all
at once show himself, and put Metellus in his turn in a state of
blockade, owing to the want of the necessary supplies, so that the
soldiers were quite wearied; and when Sertorius challenged Metellus to
a single combat, the men cried out and bid him fight, as it would be a
match between a general and a general, and a Roman and a Roman; and
when Metellus declined, they jeered him. But he laughed at them, and
he did right; for a general, as Theophrastus[141] said, should die the
death of a general, not that of a common targetier. Metellus
perceiving that the Langobritæ[142] assisted Sertorius in no small
degree, and that their town could easily be taken, as it was ill
supplied with water, for they had only one well in the city, and any
one who blockaded the place would be master of the streams in the
suburbs and near the walls, he advanced against the city, expecting to
finish the siege in two days, as there was no water; and accordingly
his soldiers received orders to take provisions with them for five
days only. But Sertorius quickly coming to their aid, gave orders to
fill two thousand skins with water, and he offered for each skin a
considerable sum of money. Many Iberians and Moors volunteered for the
service, and, selecting the men who were strong and light-footed, he
sent them through the mountain parts, with orders, when they had
delivered the skins to the people in the city, to bring out of the
town all the useless people, that the water might last the longer for
those who defended the place. When the news reached Metellus he was
much annoyed, for his soldiers had already consumed their provisions;
but he sent Aquinius,[143] at the head of six thousand men, to forage.
Sertorius got notice of this, and laid an ambush on the road of three
thousand men who starting up out of a bushy ravine, fell on Aquinius
as he was returning. Sertorius attacked in front and put the Romans to
flight, killing some and taking others prisoners. Aquinius returned
with the loss of both his armour and horse, and Metellus made a
disgraceful retreat amidst the jeers of the Iberians.

XIV. By such acts as these Sertorius gained the admiration and love of
the barbarians; and, by introducing among them the Roman armour, and
discipline, and signals, he took away the frantic and brutal part of
their courage, and transformed them from a huge band of robbers into
an efficient regular army. Besides, he employed gold and silver
unsparingly for the decoration of their helmets, and he ornamented
their shields, and accustomed them to the use of flowered cloaks and
tunics, and, by supplying them with money for such purposes, and
entering into a kind of honourable rivalry with them, he made himself
popular. But they were most gained by what he did for their children.
The youths of noblest birth he collected from the several nations at
Osca,[144] a large city, and set over them teachers of Greek and
Roman learning; and thus he really had them as hostages under the show
of educating them, as if he intended to give them a share in the
government and the administration when they attained to man's estate.
The fathers were wonderfully pleased at seeing their children dressed
in robes with purple borders, and going so orderly to the schools of
Sertorius, who paid for their education, and often had examinations
into their proficiency, and gave rewards to the deserving, and
presented them with golden ornaments for the neck, which the Romans
call "bullæ."[145] It was an Iberian usage for those whose station was
about the commander to die with him when he fell in battle, which the
barbarians in those parts express by a term equivalent to the Greek
"devotion."[146] Now only a few shield-bearers and companions followed
the rest of the commanders; but many thousands followed Sertorius, and
were devoted to die with him. It is said that, when the army of
Sertorius was routed near a certain city and the enemy was pressing on
them, the Iberians, careless about themselves, saved Sertorius, and,
raising him on their shoulders, every one vying with the rest helped
him to the walls; and when their general was secure they then betook
themselves to flight, each as well as he could.

XV. Sertorius was not beloved by the Iberians only, but also by the
soldiers of Italy, who served with him. When Perpenna Vento,[147] who
belonged to the same party as Sertorius, had arrived in Iberia with
much money and a large force, and had determined to carry on war
against Metellus on his own account, his soldiers were dissatisfied,
and there was much talk in the camp about Sertorius, to the great
annoyance of Perpenna, who was proud of his noble family and his
wealth. However, when the soldiers heard that Pompeius was crossing
the Pyrenees, taking their arms and pulling up the standards, they
assailed Perpenna with loud cries, and bade him lead them to
Sertorius; if he did not, they threatened to leave him, and go of
themselves to a man who was able to take care of himself and others
too. Perpenna yielded, and led them to join the troops of Sertorius,
to the number of fifty-three cohorts.

XVI. All the nations within the Iber river[148] were now joining
Sertorius at once, and he was powerful in numbers; for they were
continually flocking and crowding to him from all quarters. But he was
troubled by the loose discipline and self-confidence of the
barbarians, who called on him to attack the enemy, and were impatient
of delay, and he attempted to pacify them with reasons. Seeing,
however, that they were discontented, and were unwisely pressing him
with their demands, he let them have their way, and winked at their
engaging with the enemy, in so far as not to be completely crushed,
but to get some hard knocks, which he hoped would render them more
tractable for the future. Things turning out as he expected, Sertorius
came to their aid when they were flying, and brought them back safe to
the camp. However, as he wished also to cheer their spirits, a few
days after this adventure he had all the army assembled, and
introduced before them two horses,[149] one very weak and rather old,
the other of a large size and strong, with a tail remarkable for the
thickness and beauty of the hair. There stood by the side of the weak
horse a tall strong man, and by the side of the strong horse a little
man of mean appearance. On a signal given to them, the strong man
began to pull the tail of the horse with all his might towards him, as
if he would tear it off; the weak man began to pluck out the hairs
from the tail of the strong horse one by one. Now the strong man,
after no small labour to himself to no purpose, and causing much mirth
to the spectators, at last gave up; but the weak man in a trice, and
with no trouble, bared the tail of all its hairs. On which Sertorius
getting up, said, "You see, fellow allies, that perseverance will do
more than strength, and that many things which cannot be compassed all
at once, yield to continued efforts; for endurance is invincible, and
it is thus that time in its course assails and vanquishes every power,
being a favourable helper to those who with consideration watch the
opportunities that it offers, but the greatest of enemies to those who
hurry out of season." By contriving from time to time such means as
these for pacifying the barbarians, he managed his opportunities as he

XVII. His adventure with the people called Charicatani[150] was not
less admired than any of his military exploits. The Charicatani are a
people who live beyond the river Tagonius: they do not dwell in cities
or villages; but there is a large lofty hill, which contains caves and
hollows in the rocks, looking to the north. The whole of the country
at the foot of the hill consists of a clayey mud and of light earth,
easily broken in pieces, which is not strong enough to bear a man's
tread; and if it is only slightly touched will spread all about, like
unslaked lime or ashes. Whenever the barbarians through fear of war
hid themselves in their caves, and, collecting all their plunder there
kept quiet, they could not be taken by any force; and now, seeing
that Sertorius had retired before Metellus, and had encamped near the
hill, they despised him as being beaten, on which Sertorius, whether
in passion or not wishing to appear to be flying from the enemy, at
daybreak rode up to the place and examined it. But he found the
mountain unassailable on all sides; and while he was perplexing
himself to no purpose and uttering idle threats, he saw a great
quantity of dust from this light earth carried by the wind against the
barbarians; for the caves are turned, as I have said, to the north,
and the wind which blows from that quarter (some call it "caecias")
prevails most, and is the strongest of all the winds in those parts,
being generated in wet plains and snow-covered mountains; and at that
time particularly, it being the height of summer, it was strong, and
maintained by the melting of the ice in the sub-arctic regions, and it
blew most pleasantly both on the barbarians and their flocks, and
refreshed them. Now, Sertorius, thinking on all these things, and also
getting information from the country people, ordered his soldiers to
take up some of the light ashy earth, and bringing it right opposite
to the hill to make a heap of it there; which the barbarians thought
to be intended as a mound for the purpose of getting at them, and they
mocked him. Sertorius kept his soldiers thus employed till nightfall,
when he led them away. At daybreak a gentle breeze at first began to
blow, which stirred up the lightest part of the earth that had been
heaped together, and scattered it about like chaff; but when the
caecias began to blow strong, as the sun got higher, and the hills
were all covered with dust, the soldiers got on the heap of earth and
stirred it up to the bottom, and broke the clods; and some also rode
their horses up and down through the earth, kicking up the light
particles and raising them so as to be caught by the wind, which
receiving all the earth that was broken and stirred up, drove it
against the dwellings of the barbarians, whose doors were open to the
caecias. The barbarians, having only the single opening to breathe
through, upon which the wind fell, had their vision quickly obscured,
and they were speedily overpowered by a suffocating difficulty of
breathing, by reason of respiring a thick atmosphere filled with dust.
Accordingly, after holding out with difficulty for two days, they
surrendered on the third, and thus added not so much to the power as
to the reputation of Sertorius, who had taken by stratagem a place
that was impregnable to arms.

XVIII. Now, as long as Sertorius had to oppose Metellus, he was
generally considered to owe his success to the old age and natural
tardiness of Metellus, who was no match for a daring man, at the head
of a force more like a band of robbers than a regular army. But when
Pompeius had crossed the Pyrenees, and Sertorius had met him in the
field, and he and Pompeius had mutually offered one another every
opportunity for a display of generalship, and Sertorius had the
advantage in stratagem and caution, his fame was noised abroad as far
as Rome, and he was considered the most able general of his age in the
conduct of a war: for the reputation of Pompeius was no small one; but
at that time particularly he was enjoying the highest repute by reason
of his distinguished exploits in the cause of Sulla, for which Sulla
gave him the name of Magnus, which means Great, and Pompeius obtained
triumphal honours before he had a beard. All this made many of the
cities which were subject to Sertorius turn their eyes towards
Pompeius, and feel inclined to pass over to him; but their intentions
were checked by the loss at Lauron,[151] which happened contrary to
all expectation. Sertorius was besieging this town, when Pompeius came
with all his force to relieve it. There was a hill, well situated for
enabling an enemy to act against the place, which Sertorius made an
effort to seize, and Pompeius to prevent its being occupied. Sertorius
succeeded in getting possession of the hill, on which Pompeius made
his troops stop, and was well pleased at what had happened, thinking
that Sertorius was hemmed in between the city and his own army; and
he sent a message to the people in Lauron, bidding them be of good
cheer, and to keep to their walls and look on while Sertorius was
blockaded. Sertorius smiled when he heard of this, and said he would
teach Sulla's pupil (for so he contemptuously called Pompeius) that a
general should look behind him rather than before. As he said this he
pointed out to his men, who were thus blockaded, that there were six
thousand heavy armed soldiers, whom he had left in the encampment,
which he had quitted before he seized the hill, in order that if
Pompeius should turn against them, the soldiers in camp might attack
him in the rear. And Pompeius too saw this when it was too late, and
he did not venture to attack Sertorius for fear of being surrounded;
and though he could not for shame leave the citizens in their danger,
he was obliged to sit there and see them ruined before his eyes; for
the barbarians in despair surrendered. Sertorius spared their lives,
and let them all go; but he burnt the city, not for revenge or because
he was cruel, for of all commanders Sertorius appears to have least
given way to passion; but he did it to shame and humble the admirers
of Pompeius, and that the barbarians might say that Pompeius did not
help his allies, though he was close at hand, and all but warmed with
the flames of their city.

XIX. However, Sertorius was now sustaining several defeats, though he
always saved himself and those with him from defeat; but his losses
were occasioned by the other generals. Yet he gained more credit from
the means by which he repaired his defeats than the generals on the
other side who won the victories; an instance of which occurred in the
battle against Pompeius, on the Sucro, and another in the battle near
Tuttia,[152] against Pompeius[153] and Metellus together. Now the
battle on the Sucro is said to have been brought about by the
eagerness of Pompeius, who wished Metellus to have no share in the
victory. Sertorius, on his part, also wished to engage Pompeius before
Metellus arrived; and, drawing out his forces when the evening was
coming on, he commenced the battle, thinking that, as the enemy were
strangers and unacquainted with the ground, the darkness would be a
disadvantage to them, whether they were the pursued or the pursuers.
When the battle began, it happened that Sertorius was not engaged with
Pompeius, but with Afranius at first, who commanded the left wing of
the enemy, while Sertorius commanded his own right. But, hearing that
those who were opposed to Pompeius were giving way before his attack
and being defeated, Sertorius left the right wing to the care of other
generals, and hastened to the support of the wing that was giving way.
Bringing together the soldiers who were already flying, and those who
were still keeping their ranks, he encouraged them and made a fresh
charge upon Pompeius, who was pursuing, and put his men to the rout;
on which occasion Pompeius himself nearly lost his life, and had a
wonderful escape after being wounded. The Libyans of Sertorius seized
the horse of Pompeius, which was decked with golden ornaments and
loaded with trappings; but while they were dividing the booty and
quarrelling about it, they neglected the pursuit. As soon as Sertorius
quitted the right wing to relieve the other part of the army,
Afranius[154] put to flight his opponents and drove them to their
camp, which, he entered with the captives, it being now dark, and
began to plunder, knowing nothing of the defeat of Pompeius, and being
unable to stop his soldiers from seizing the booty. In the mean time
Sertorius returned, after defeating the enemy who were opposed to him,
and falling on the soldiers of Afranius, who were all in disorder and
consequently panic-stricken, he slaughtered many of them. In the
morning he again armed his troops and came out to fight; but observing
that Metellus was near, he broke up his order of battle, and marched
off saying, "If that old woman had not come up, I would have given
this boy a good drubbing by way of lesson, and have sent him back to

XX. About this time Sertorius was much dispirited, because that
deer[155] of his could nowhere be found; for he was thus deprived of a
great means of cheering the barbarians, who then particularly required
consolation. It happened that some men, who were rambling about at
night for other purposes, fell in with the deer and caught it, for
they knew it by the colour. Sertorius hearing of this, promised to
give them a large sum of money if they would mention it to nobody;
and, concealing the deer for several days, he came forward with a
joyful countenance to the tribunal, and told the barbarian chiefs that
the deity prognosticated to him in his sleep some great good fortune.
He then ascended the tribunal, and transacted business with those who
applied to him. The deer being let loose by those who had charge of it
close by, and, seeing Sertorius, bounded joyfully up to the tribunal,
and, standing by him, placed its head on his knees, and touched his
right hand with its mouth, having been accustomed to do this before.
Sertorius cordially returned the caresses of the animal, and even
shed tears. The spectators were at first surprised; then clapping
their hands and shouting, they conducted Sertorius to his residence,
considering him to be a man superior to other mortals and beloved by
the gods; and they were full of good hopes.

XXI. Sertorius, who had reduced the enemy to the greatest straits in
the plains about Seguntum[156] was compelled to fight a battle with
them when they came down to plunder and forage. The battle was well
contested on both sides. Memmius, one of the most skillful of the
commanders under Pompeius, fell in the thick of the fight, and
Sertorius, who was victorious, and making a great slaughter of those
who opposed him, attempted to get at Metellus, who stood his ground
with a resolution above his years, and, while fighting bravely, was
struck by a spear. This made the Romans who were on the spot, as well
as those who heard of it, ashamed to desert their leader, and inspired
them with courage against their enemies. After covering Metellus with
their shields and rescuing him from danger, by making a vigorous onset
they drove the Iberians from their ground; and, as the victory now
changed sides, Sertorius, with a view of securing a safe retreat for
his men, and contriving the means of getting together another army
without any interruption, retired to a strong city in the mountains,
and began to repair the walls and strengthen the gates, though his
object was anything rather than to stand a siege: but his design was
to deceive the enemy, in which he succeeded; for they sat down before
the place, thinking they should take it without difficulty, and in the
mean time they let the defeated barbarians escape, and allowed
Sertorius to collect a fresh army. It was got together by Sertorius
sending officers to the cities, and giving orders that when they had
collected a good body of men, they should dispatch a messenger to him.
When the messenger came, he broke through the besiegers without any
difficulty and joined his troops; and now he again advanced against
the enemy in great force, and began to cut off their land supplies by
ambuscades, and hemming them in, and showing himself at every point,
inasmuch as his attacks were made with great expedition; and he cut
off all their maritime supplies by occupying the coast with his
piratical vessels, so that the generals opposed to him were obliged to
separate, one to march off into Gaul, and Pompeius to winter among the
Vaccæi[157] in great distress for want of supplies, and to write to
the Senate, that he would lead his army out of Iberia, if they did not
send him money, for he had spent all his own in defence of Italy.
There was great talk in Rome that Sertorius would come to Italy before
Pompeius[158] to such difficulties did Sertorius, by his military
abilities, reduce the first and ablest of the generals of that age.

XXII. Metellus also showed, that he feared the man and thought he was
powerful; for he made proclamation, that if any Roman killed Sertorius
he would give him a hundred talents of silver and twenty thousand
jugera of land; and, if he was an exile, permission to return, to
Rome: thus declaring that he despaired of being able to defeat
Sertorius in the field, and therefore would purchase his life by
treachery. Besides this, Metellus was so elated by a victory which on
one occasion he gained over Sertorius, and so well pleased with his
success, that he was proclaimed Imperator[159] and the cities received
him in his visits to them with sacrifices and altars. It is also said,
that he allowed chaplets to be placed on his head, and accepted
invitations to sumptuous feasts, at which he wore a triumphal vest;
and Victories[160] which were contrived to move by machinery,
descended and distributed golden trophies and crowns, and companies of
youths and women sang epinician hymns in honour of him. For this he
was with good reason ridiculed, for that after calling Sertorius a
runaway slave of Sulla, and a remnant of the routed party of Carbo, he
was so puffed up and transported with delight because he had gained an
advantage over Sertorius, who had been compelled to retire. But it was
a proof of the magnanimous character of Sertorius, first, that he gave
the name of Senate to the Senators who fled from Rome and joined him,
and that he appointed quæstors and generals from among them, and
arranged everything of this kind according to Roman usage; and next,
that though he availed himself of the arms, the money and the cities
of the Iberians, he never yielded to them one *tittle of the Roman
supremacy, but he appointed Romans to be their generals and
commanders, considering that he was recovering freedom for the Romans,
and was not strengthening the Iberians against the Romans; for
Sertorius loved his country and had a great desire to return home.
Notwithstanding this, in his reverses he behaved like a brave man, and
never humbled himself before his enemies; and after his victories he
would send to Metellus and to Pompeius, and declare that he was ready
to lay down his arms and to live in a private station, if he might be
allowed to return home; for, he said, he would rather be the obscurest
citizen in Rome than an exile from his country, though he were
proclaimed supreme ruler of all other countries in the world. It is
said, that he longed to return home chiefly on account of his mother,
who brought him up after his father's death, and to whom he was
completely devoted. At the time when his friends in Iberia invited him
to take the command, he heard of the death of his mother, and he was
near dying of grief. He lay in his tent for seven days without giving
the watchword, or being seen by any of his friends; and it was with
difficulty that his fellow-generals and those of like rank with
himself, who had assembled about his tent, prevailed on him to come
out to the soldiers, and take a share in the administration of
affairs, which were going on well. This made many people think that
Sertorius was naturally a man of mild temper, and well disposed to a
quiet life; but that, owing to uncontrollable causes, and contrary to
his wishes, he entered on the career of a commander, and then, when he
could not ensure his safety, and was driven to arms by his enemies, he
had recourse to war as the only means by which he could protect his

XXIII. His negociations with Mithridates also were a proof of his
magnanimity; for now that Mithridates, rising from the fall that he
had from Sulla, as it were, to a second contest, had again attacked
Asia, and the fame of Sertorius was great, and had gone abroad to all
parts, and those who sailed from the West had filled the Pontus with
the reports about him, as if with so many foreign wares, Mithridates
was moved to send an embassy to him, being urged thereto mainly by the
fulsome exaggerations of his flatterers, who compared Sertorius to
Hannibal and Mithridates to Pyrrhus, and said that if the Romans were
attacked on both sides, they could not hold out against such great
abilities and powers combined, when the most expert of commanders had
joined the greatest of kings. Accordingly, Mithridates sent
ambassadors to Iberia, with letters to Sertorius and proposals. On his
part he offered to supply money and ships for the war, and he asked
from Sertorius a confirmation of his title to the whole of Asia, which
he had given up to the Romans pursuant to the treaty made with Sulla.
Sertorius assembled a council, which he called a senate, and all the
members advised to accept the king's proposal, and to be well content
with it; they said the king only asked of them a name and an empty
answer touching things that were not in their power, in return for
which they were to receive what they happened to stand most in need
of. But Sertorius would not listen to this; he said he did not grudge
Mithridates having Bithynia and Cappadocia; these were nations that
were accustomed to a king, and the Romans had nothing to do with them;
but the province which belonged to the Romans by the justest of
titles, which Mithridates took from them and kept, from which, after a
contest, he was driven out by Fimbria, and which he gave up by treaty
with Sulla,[161] -that province he would never allow to fall again
into the power of Mithridates; for it was fit that the Roman state
should be extended by his success, not that his success should be
owing to her humiliation. To a generous mind, victory by honest means
was a thing to desire, but life itself was not worth having with

XXIV. When this was reported to Mithridates he was amazed, and it is
said that he remarked to his friends--what terms, then, will Sertorius
impose when he is seated on the Palatium,[162] if now, when he is
driven to the shores of the Atlantic, he fixes limits to our kingdom,
and threatens us with war if we make any attempt upon Asia? However, a
treaty was made, and ratified by oath, on the following terms:
Mithridates[163] was to have Cappadocia and Bithynia, and Sertorius
was to send him a general and soldiers; and Sertorius was to receive
from Mithridates three thousand talents, and forty ships. Sertorius
sent as general to Asia Marcus Marius, one of the Senators who had
fled to him; and Mithridates, after assisting him to take some of the
Asiatic cities,[164] followed Marius as he entered them with the
fasces and axes, voluntarily taking the second place and the character
of an inferior. Marius restored some of the cities to liberty, and he
wrote to others to announce to them their freedom from taxation
through the power of Sertorius; so that Asia, which was much troubled
by the Publicani,[165] and oppressed by the rapacity and insolence of
the soldiers quartered there, was again raised on the wings of hope,
and longed for the expected change of masters.

XXV. In Iberia, the senators and nobles about Sertorius, as soon as
they were put into a condition to hope that they were a match for the
opposite party, and their fears were over, began to feel envious, and
had a foolish jealousy of the power of Sertorius. Perpenna encouraged
this feeling, being urged by the empty pride of high birth to aspire
to the supreme command, and he secretly held treasonable language to
those who were favourable to his designs. "What evil dæmon," he would
say, "has got hold of us, and carried us from bad to worse--us who did
not brook to stay at home and do the bidding of Sulla, though in a
manner he was lord of all the earth and sea at once, but coming here
with ill luck, in order to live free, have voluntarily become slaves
by making ourselves the guards of Sertorius in his exile, and while we
are called a senate, a name jeered at by all who hear it, we submit to
insults, and orders, and sufferings as great as the Iberians and
Lusitanians endure." Their minds filled with such suggestions as
these, the majority did not, indeed, openly desert Sertorius, for they
feared his power, but they secretly damaged all his measures, and they
oppressed the barbarians by severe treatment and exactions, on the
pretext that it was by the order of Sertorius. This caused revolts and
disturbances in the cities; and those who were sent to settle and
pacify these outbreaks returned after causing more wars, and
increasing the existing insubordination; so that Sertorius, contrary
to his former moderation and mildness, did a grievous wrong to the
sons of the Iberians, who were educating at Osca,[166] by putting some
to death, and selling others as slaves.

XXVI. Now Perpenna, having got several to join him in his conspiracy,
gained over Manlius, one of those who were in command. This Manlius
was much attached to a beautiful boy, and to give the youth a proof of
his attachment he told him of the design, and urged him not to care
for his other lovers; but to give his affections to him alone, as he
would be a great man in a few days. The youth reported what Manlius
said to Aufidius, another of his lovers, to whom he was more attached.
On hearing this, Aufidius was startled, for he was engaged in the
conspiracy against Sertorius, but he did not know that Manlius was a
party to it. But when the youth named Perpenna and Graecinus,[167] and
some others whom Aufidius knew to be in the conspiracy, he was
confounded, yet he made light of the story to the youth, and told him
to despise Manlius for a lying braggart; but he went to Perpenna, and,
showing him the critical state of affairs, and the danger, urged him
to the deed. The conspirators followed his advice, and having engaged
a man to bring letters they introduced him to Sertorius. The letters
gave information of a victory gained by one of the generals, and a
great slaughter of the enemy. Upon this Sertorius was overjoyed, and
offered a sacrifice for the happy tidings; and Perpenna proposed to
feast him and his friends (and they were of the number of the
conspirators), and after much entreaty he prevailed on Sertorius to
come. Now whenever Sertorius was present, an entertainment was
conducted with great propriety and decorum; for he would not tolerate
any indecent act or expression, but accustomed his companions to
enjoy mirth and merriment with orderly behaviour, and without any
excess; but, on this occasion, in the midst of the feast, seeking to
begin a quarrel, they openly used obscene language, and, pretending to
be drunk, behaved indecently, for the purpose of irritating Sertorius.
Whether it was that he was vexed at this disorderly conduct, or had
now suspected their design by the flagging of the conversation[168]
and their unusual contemptuous manner towards him, he changed his
posture on the couch by throwing himself on his back, as if he was
paying no attention to them, and not listening. On Perpenna taking a
cup of wine, and in the middle of the draught throwing it from him and
so making a noise, which was the signal agreed on, Antonius, who lay
next to Sertorius, struck him with his sword. On receiving the blow,
Sertorius turned himself, and at the same time attempted to rise, but
Antonius, throwing himself upon his chest, held his hands, and he was
despatched by blows from many of the conspirators, without even making
any resistance.

XXVII.[169] Now most of the Iberians immediately sent ambassadors to
Pompeius and Metellus, to make their submission; those who remained
Perpenna took under his command, and attempted to do something. After
employing the means that Sertorius had got together, just so far as to
disgrace himself, and show that he was not suited either to command or
to obey, he engaged with Pompeius. Being quickly crushed by him and
taken prisoner, he did not behave himself even in this extremity as a
commander should do; but having got possession of the papers of
Sertorius, he offered to Pompeius to show him autograph letters from
consular men and persons of the highest influence at Rome, in which
Sertorius was invited to Italy, and was assured that there were many
who were desirous to change the present settlement of affairs, and to
alter the constitution. Now Pompeius, by behaving on this occasion,
not like a young man, but one whose understanding was well formed and
disciplined, relieved Rome from great dangers and revolutions. He got
together all those letters, and all the papers of Sertorius, and burnt
them, without either reading them himself or letting any one else read
them; and he immediately put Perpenna to death, through fear that
there might be defection and disturbance if the names were
communicated to others. Of the fellow-conspirators of Perpenna, some
were brought to Pompeius, and put to death; and others, who fled to
Libya, were pierced by the Moorish spears. Not one escaped, except
Aufidius, the rival of Manlius, and this happened, either because he
escaped notice, or nobody took any trouble about him, and he lived to
old age, in some barbarian village, in poverty and contempt.


[Footnote 101: If this is obscure, the fault is Plutarch's. His word
for Fortune is [Greek: tuchê] τύχη which he has often used in the Life
of Sulla. The word for Spontaneity is [Greek: to automaton] τὸ
αὐτόματον, the Self-moved. The word for Elemental things is [Greek: ta
hupokeimena] τὰ ὑποκειμένα. The word [Greek: hupokeimenon] ὑποκειμένον
is used by Aristotle to signify both the thing of which something is
predicated, the Subject of grammarians, and for the Substance, which
is as it were the substratum on which actions operate. Aristotle
(_Metaphys._ vi. vii. 3) says "Essence ([Greek: ousia] οὐσία) or Being
is predicated, if not in many ways, in four at least; for the formal
cause ([Greek: to ti ên einai] τὸ τὶ ἦν εἶναι), and the universal, and
genus appear to be the essence of everything; and the fourth of these
is the Substance ([Greek: to hupokeimenon] τὸ ὑποκειμένον). And the
Substance is that of which the rest are predicated, but it is not
predicated of any other thing. And Essence seems to be especially the
first Substance; and such, in a manner, matter ([Greek: hulê] ὕλη) is
said to be; and in another manner, form; and in a third, that which is
from these. And I mean by matter ([Greek: hulê] ὕλη), copper, for
instance; and by form, the figure of the idea; and by that which is
from them, the statue in the whole," &c. I have translated [Greek: to
ti ên einai] τὸ τὶ ἦν εἶναι by "formal cause," as Thomas Taylor has
done, and according to the explanation of Trendelenburg, in his
edition of Aristotle _On the Soul_, i. 1, § 2. It is not my business
to explain Aristotle, but to give some clue to the meaning of

The word "accidentally" ([Greek: kata tuchên] κατὰ τύχην) is opposed
to "forethought" ([Greek: pronoia] προνοία), "design," "providence."
How Plutarch conceived Fortune, I do not know; nor do I know what
Fortune and Chance mean in any language. But the nature of the
contrast which he intends is sufficiently clear for his purpose.]

[Footnote 102: As to Attes, as Pausanias (vii. 17) names him, his
history is given by Pausanias. There appears to be some confusion in
his story. Herodotus (i. 36) has a story of an Atys, a son of Crœsus,
who was killed while hunting a wild boar; and Adonis, the favourite of
Venus, was killed by a wild boar. It is not known who this Arcadian
Atteus was.

Actæon saw Diana naked while she was bathing, and was turned by her
into a deer and devoured by his dogs. (Apollodorus, _Biblioth_. iii.
4; Ovidius, _Metamorph_. iii. 155.) The story of the other Actæon is
told by Plutarch (_Amator. Narrationes_, c. 2).]

[Footnote 103: The elder Africanus, P. Cornelius Scipio, who defeated
Hannibal B.C. 202, and the younger Africanus, the adopted son of the
son of the elder Africanus, who took Carthage B.C. 146. See Life of
Tib. Gracchus, c. 1, Notes.]

[Footnote 104: Ios, a small island of the Grecian Archipelago, now
Nio, is mentioned among the places where Homer was buried. The name
Ios resembles that of the Greek word for violet, ([Greek: ion] ίον).
Smyrna, one of the members of the Ionian confederation, is mentioned
among the birth places of Homer. It was an accident that the name of
the town Smyrna was the same as the name for myrrh, _Smyrna_ ([Greek:
smurnê] σμύρνη),x which was not a Greek word. Herodotus (iii. 112)
says that it was the Arabians who procured myrrh.]

[Footnote 105: This Philippus was the father of Alexander the Great.
He is said to have lost an eye from a wound by an arrow at the siege
of Pydna Antigonus, one of the generals of Alexander, was named
Cyclops, or the one-eyed. He accompanied Alexander in his Asiatic
expedition, and in the division of the empire after Alexander's death
he obtained a share and by his vigour and abilities he made himself
the most powerful of the successors of Alexander. It is said that
Apelles, who painted the portrait of Antigonus, placed him in profile
in order to hide the defect of the one eye. Antigonus closed his long
career at the battle of Ipsus B.C. 301, where he was defeated and
killed. He was then eighty-one years of age.]

[Footnote 106: Plutarch's form is Annibas. I may have sometimes
written it Hannibal. Thus we have Anno and Hanno. I don't know which
is the true form. [I prefer to write it Hannibal.--A.S.]]

[Footnote 107: Plutarch has written the Life of Eumenes, whom he
contrasts with Sertorius. Eumenes was one of the generals of Alexander
who accompanied him to Asia. After Alexander's death, he obtained for
his government a part of Asia Minor bordering on the Euxine, and
extending as far east as Trapezus. The rest of his life is full of
adventure. He fell into the hands of Antigonus B.C. 315, who put him
to death.]

[Footnote 108: Nursia was in the country of the Sabini among the
Apennines, and near the source of the Nar. It is now Norcia. The MSS.
of Plutarch have Nussa.]

[Footnote 109: The date is B.C. 105. See the Life of Marius, c. 10,
and Notes.]

[Footnote 110: Titus Didius and Q. Cæcilius Metellus Nepos were
consuls B.C. 98. In B.C. 97 Didius was in Spain as Proconsul, and
fought against the Celtiberi. Gellius (ii. 27) quotes a passage from
the Historiæ of Sallustius, in which mention is made of Sertorius
serving under Didius in Spain, and the character of Sertorius is given
pretty nearly in the terms of Plutarch, who may have used Sallustius
as one of his authorities. Didius is mentioned by Cicero, _Pro Cn.
Plancio_, c. 25; and by Frontinus, i. 8. 5; ii. 10. 1; and by Appian
(_Iberica_, c. 99). The passage in the text should be translated, "he
was sent out under Didius as commander, and wintered in Iberia, in
Castlo," &c. Plutarch has used the word [Greek: stratêgos] στρατηγός,
which means prætor; but to make the statement correct, we must
translate it Proconsul, or commander. See Life of Crassus, c. 4,

[Footnote 111: Castlo, Castalo, or Castulo, is placed on the north
bank of the Bætis, the Guadalquivir.]

[Footnote 112: See the Life of Marius, c. 32, Notes. The events that
are briefly alluded to at the end of this chapter are described in the
Lives of Marius and Sulla. The battle in the Forum is spoken of in the
Life of Marius, c. 41.]

[Footnote 113: The same story is told in the Life of Marius, c. 44,
where it is stated that Cinna and Sertorius combined to put these
scoundrels out of the way; but the number that were massacred is not
stated there.]

[Footnote 114: Compare the Life of Marius, c. 45, and of Sulla, c. 28,
&c. Cinna was murdered by his soldiers two years after the death of
Marius, and in his fourth consulship, B.C. 84. The younger Marius was
Consul in B.C. 82, with Cn. Papirius Carbo for his colleague. This was
Carbo's third consulship. According to Plutarch, Sertorius left Italy
after the younger Marius was consul, and therefore not earlier than
B.C. 82, unless we understand the passage in Plutarch as referring to
the election of Marius, and not to the commencement of his consulship.
Appian (_Civil Wars_, i. 86) places the departure of Sertorius in the
year B.C. 83.]

[Footnote 115: Sertorius had not been Consul, and therefore he was not
now Proconsul. It is true that a man, who had not been Consul, might
receive the government of a Province with the title of Proconsul. (See
c. 7.) Sertorius may have assumed the title.]

[Footnote 116: If Sertorius stayed at Rome till the younger Marius was
elected Consul, as Plutarch states in the sixth chapter, he probably
saw what he is here represented as hearing.]

[Footnote 117: This Annius, surnamed Luscus, served under Q. Metellus
in the Jugurthine War B.C. 107. (Sallust, _Jug. War_, c. 77.) Sulla
gave him the command in Spain with the title of Proconsul B.C. 81. An
extant medal seems to have been struck in honour of his Proconsulship.
(Eckhel, _Doct. Num. Vet._ v. 134.)]

[Footnote 118: This town, which the Romans called Nova Carthago, was
built by the Carthaginians at the close of the first Punic War B.C.
235, and so long as they kept possession of Spain it was their chief
city. Livius (26. c. 42), describes the situation of New Carthage, now
Cartagena, and one of the best harbours in Spain. Its position on the
S.E. coast is favourable for communication with Africa.]

[Footnote 119: The maritime towns of Cilicia were for a long time the
resort of a bold set of seamen and adventurers who scoured the
Mediterranean and were as formidable to the people of Italy as the
Barbary Corsairs were in the middle ages. It was one of the great
merits of Cn. Pompeius Magnus that he cleared the seas of these
scoundrels. See Lucullus, c. 37.]

[Footnote 120: The two islands of Yviça or Ibiça and Formentera, which
belong to the Balearic group, were sometimes comprehended under the
name of the Pityussæ or the Pine Islands (Strabo, 167, ed. Casaub.).
The Greeks and Romans called Yviça, Ebusus. Iviça is hilly, and the
high tracts are well covered with pine and fir.]

[Footnote 121: This is the old name of the Straits of Gibraltar, which
is still retained in the modern form Cadiz. Gadeira, which the Romans
called Gades, was an old Phœnician town, on the island of Leon, where
Cadiz now stands. Strabo (p. 168, ed. Casaub.) says that Gades in his
time (the beginning of the reign of Tiberius) was not inferior in
population to any city except Rome, and was a place of great trade, as
it is now.]

[Footnote 122: This river, now the Guadalquivir, gave the name of
Bætica to one of the three provinces into which the Spanish Peninsula
was ultimately divided by the Romans for the purposes of

[Footnote 123: This was the name for so much of the ocean that washes
the west coast of Europe and Africa as the Greeks and Romans were
acquainted with. The Greeks and Romans had no name for the

[Footnote 124: The only islands in the Atlantic that correspond to
this description are Madeira and Porto Santo, but Porto Santo is forty
miles north-east of Madeira. The distance of Madeira from the coast of
Africa is about 400 miles or about 4000 stadia. The climate of Madeira
is very temperate: the thermometer seldom sinks below 60°, though it
sometimes rises as high as 90° of Fahrenheit. On the high and
mountainous parts there are heavy dews, and rain falls at all seasons.
Owing to the variety of surface and elevation the island produces both
tropical products and those of temperate countries. The fame of this
happy region had spread to all parts of the ancient world, though we
cannot safely conclude that the islands were known by report to Homer.
Horace in his 16th _Epode_ is probably alluding to these islands when
he is speaking of the Civil Wars and of flying from their horrors in
those beautiful lines:

    Nos manet Oceanus circumvagus; arva beata
      Petamus arva divites et insulas, &c.


[Footnote 125: The passage is in the fourth book of the 'Odyssey,' v.
563, and is quoted by Strabo (p. 31):

    And there in sooth man's life is easiest;
    Nor snow, nor raging storm, nor rain is there,
    But ever gently breathing gales of zephyr
    Oceanus sends up.

Strabo in another passage expresses an opinion that the Elysian fields
were in the southern parts of Spain. That would at least be a good
place for them.]

[Footnote 126: This region is the Mauritania of the Roman Geographers,
the modern Marocco, and the town of Tigennis is the Roman Tingis, the
modern Tangier, which is on the Atlantic coast of Africa,
south-south-east of Gades. The circumstance of Tingis being attacked
shows that the African campaign of Sertorius was in the north-western
part of Marocco. Strabo mentions Tinga (p. 825). See also Plin. _H.N._
v. 1.]

[Footnote 127: The story of this giant is in the mythographers. Tumuli
are found in many parts of the old and new world, and it seems
probable that they were all memorials to the dead. The only surprising
thing in this story is the size of the body; which each man may
explain in his own way. There are various records in antient writers
of enormous bones being found. Those found at Tegea under a smithy,
which were supposed to be the bones of Orestes, were seven cubits long
(Herodotus, i. 68), little more than the ninth part of the dimensions
of Antæus: but Antæus was a giant and Orestes was not. See Strabo's
remarks on this story (p. 829).]

[Footnote 128: See Life of Sulla, c. 17. I am not sure that I have
given the right meaning of this passage. Plutarch may mean to say that
he has said so much on this matter in honour of Juba.]

[Footnote 129: I have translated this passage literally and kept the
word dæmon, which is the best way of enabling the reader to judge of
the meaning; of the text. If the word "dæmon" is here translated
"fortune," it may mislead. A like construction to the words [Greek: tô
daimoni summetabalein to êthos] τῶ δαιμόνι συμμεταβαλεῖν τὸ ἧθος
occurs in the Life of Lucullus, c. 39. The meaning of the whole
passage must be considered with reference to the sense of dæmon, which
is explained in the notes of the Life of Sulla, c. 6.]

[Footnote 130: The Lusitani occupied a part of the modern kingdom of

[Footnote 131: This story of the deer is told by Frontinus
(_Stratagem,_ i. 11, 13), and by Gellius (xv. 22).]

[Footnote 132: He was of the Aurelia Gens.]

[Footnote 133: Is a small town on the coast, east of the mouth of the
Bætis (Guadalquivir) and near the Straits of Gibraltar. The channel
must be the Straits of Gibraltar.]

[Footnote 134: This is undoubtedly the right name, though it is
corrupted in the MSS. See the various readings in Sintenis, and
_Sulla_ (c. 31), to which he refers. However, the corrupt readings of
some MSS. clearly show what the true reading is.]

[Footnote 135: Sintenis reads Domitius Calvisius. But it should be
Calvinus: Calvinus was a cognomen of the Domitii. (See Livius,
_Epitome_, lib. 90.) The person who is meant is L. Domitius
Ahenobarbus. He fell in this battle on the Guadiana, where he was
defeated by Hirtuleius. (Drumann, _Geschichte Roms_, Ahenobarbi, 19.)]

[Footnote 136: That is the province which the Romans called
Tarraconensis, from the town of Tarraco, Tarragona. The Tarraconensis
was the north-eastern part of the Spanish peninsula. The true name of
Thoranius is Thorius.]

[Footnote 137: This was Q. Metellus Pius, the son of Numidicus, who
was banished through the artifices of C. Marius. (Life of Marius, c.
7, &c.) He was Proconsul in Spain from B.C. 78 to 72, and was sent
there in consequence of the success of Sertorius against Cotta and

[Footnote 138: Some critics read Lucius Lollius. See the various
readings in Sintenis: his name was L. Manilius.]

[Footnote 139: I should rather have translated it "Gaul about Narbo."
Plutarch means the Roman Province in Gaul, which was called
Narbonensis, from the town of Narbo Martius.]

[Footnote 140: Commonly called Pompey the Great, whose name occurs in
the Lives of Sulla, Lucullus, and Crassus. Plutarch has written his
Life at length.]

[Footnote 141: Probably the philosopher and pupil of Aristotle.]

[Footnote 142: Some writers would connect this name of a people with
Langobriga, the name of a place. There were two places of the name, it
is said, and one is placed near the mouth of the Douro. It is useless
to attempt to fix the position of the Langobritæ from what Plutarch
has said.]

[Footnote 143: Or Aquinus or Aquilius. Cornelius Aquinus was his

[Footnote 144: Osca was a town in the north-east of Spain, probably
Huesca in Aragon. Mannert observes that this school must have greatly
contributed to fix the Latin language in Spain. Spain however already
contained Roman settlers, and at a later period it contained numerous
Roman colonies: in fact the Peninsula was completely Romanized, of
which the Spanish language and the establishment of the Roman Law in
Spain are the still existing evidence. The short-lived school of
Sertorius could not have done much towards fixing the Latin language
in Spain.]

[Footnote 145: The Bulla was of a round form. See the copy of one from
the British Museum in Smith's 'Dict. of Greek and Roman Antiquities.'
Kaltwasser refers to Plutarch's Life of Romulus, c. 20, and his 'Roman
Questions,' Part 3, in which he explains what the Bulla is.]

[Footnote 146: The Greek word [Greek: kataspeisis] κατάσπεισις
signifies a "pouring out." Kaltwasser refers to a passage in Cæsar's
'Gallic War,' iii. 22, in which he speaks of the "devoted" (devoti),
whom the Aquitani called Soldurii. As the Aquitani bordered on the
Pyrenees, it is not surprising that the like usage prevailed among
them and the Iberians.]

[Footnote 147: The orthography is Perperna, as is proved by
inscriptions. M. Perperna, the grandfather of this Perperna, was
consul B.C. 130. (see Life of Tib. Gracchus, c. 20, Notes.) The son of
M. Perperna also was consul B.C. 92: he did not die till B.C. 49, and
consequently survived his son, this Perperna of Plutarch. Perperna
Vento had been prætor. He associated himself with Lepidus after the
death of Sulla, and was like M. Lepidus driven from Rome (Life of
Sulla, c. 34, Notes).]

[Footnote 148: This is the Ebro, which the Romans called Iberus, the
large river which flows in a south-east direction and enters the

It seems that Plutarch here means the nations between the Ebro and the
Pyrenees, or the modern Aragon, Navarre, and Catalonia.]

[Footnote 149: The story is told by Frontinus, _Stratagemata_, i. 10,
as Kaltwasser observes, and again, in iv. 7, in the very same words.
It has been often remarked that Horatius probably alludes to this
story (ii. _Epist._ I, 45).]

[Footnote 150: The Tagonius is either the Tagus (Tajo), or a branch of
that large river, on the banks of which the Carpetani are placed by
geographers, who also mark Caraca, a position on the Henares, a branch
of the Tagus. If Caraca represents the country of the Charicatani, the
Tagonius is the Nares or Henares, on which stood Complutum, the modern
Alcalá de Henarea. But all this is merely conjecture.]

[Footnote 151: Lauron is placed near the coast, and near the outlet of
the Sucro river, the modern Xucar. There was also a town Sucro near
the mouth of the Sucro. Appian (_Civil Wars_, i. 109) says that when
the city was captured, a soldier attempted violence on a woman
([Greek: para phusin] παρὰ φύσιν), who tore out his eyes with her
fingers. Sertorius, who knew that the whole cohort was addicted to
infamous practices, put them all to death though they were Romans.
Frontinus (_Stratagem._ ii. 5) has a long account of this affair at
Lauron, for which he quotes Livius, who says that Pompeius lost ten
thousand men and all his baggage.

Pompeius began his Spanish campaign B.C. 76.]

[Footnote 152: These names are very uncertain in Plutarch. Tuttia may
be the Turia, now the Guadalaviar, the river of Valencia, the outlet
of which is about twenty-five miles north of the outlet of the Sucro.
Other readings are Duria and Dusia (see the notes of Sintenis). If
these rivers are properly identified, this campaign was carried on in
the plains of the kingdom of Valencia. Tutia is mentioned by Florus
(iii. 22) as one of the Spanish towns which surrendered to Pompeius
after the death of Sertorius and Perperna.

Kaltwasser refers to Frontinus, who speaks of one Hirtuleius, or
Herculeius in some editions, as a general of Sertorius who was
defeated by Metellus (_Stratagem_, ii. 1). In another passage (ii. 7)
Frontinus states that Sertorius during a battle being informed by a
native that Hirtuleius hod fallen, stabbed the man that he might not
carry the news to others, and so dispirit his soldiers. Plutarch (Life
of Pompeius c. 18) states that Pompeius defeated Herennius and
Perperna near Valentia, and killed above ten thousand of their men.
This is apparently the same battle that Plutarch is here speaking of.]

[Footnote 153: See the Life of Pompeius, c. 19; and Appian (_Civil
Wars_, i. 110), who states that the battle took place near the town of
Suero (which would be the more correct translation of the text of
Plutarch), and that the wing which Perperna commanded was defeated by

[Footnote 154: This L. Afranius is the man whom Cicero calls "Auli
filius" (_Ad Attic,_ i. 16), by which he meant that he was of obscure
origin. He was consul with Q. Metellus Celer B.C. 60. Afranius and
Petreius commanded for Pompeius in Spain B.C. 49, but C. Julius Cæsar
compelled them to surrender, and pardoned them on the condition that
they should not again serve against him. Afranius broke his promise
and again joined Pompeius. He was in the battle of Thapsus in Africa
B.C. 46, and after the defeat he attempted to escape into Mauritania,
but was caught and given up to Cæsar, and shortly afterwards put to
death by the soldiers.]

[Footnote 155: Appian (_Civil Wars_, i. 110) has the same story about
the dear being found.]

[Footnote 156: Seguntum, or Saguntia, as it is written in Appian (i.
110). It is not certain what place is meant. Some critics would read
"in the plains of the Saguntini," by which might be meant the
neighbourhood of Saguntum, a town on the east coast between the mouths
of the Ebro and the Xucar, which was taken by Hannibal in the second
Punic War (Liv. 21, c. 15). The maps place a Segontia on the Tagonius,
another on the Salo (Xalon), a branch of the Ebro, and a Saguntia in
the country of the Vaccæi on the northern branch of the Douro.
Pompeius in his letter to the Senate speaks of the capture of the camp
of Sertorius near Sucro, his defeat on the Durius, and the capture of
Valentia. If the Durius be the Douro, this Segontia may be one of the
towns called Segontia in the north-west of Spain. But the Durius may
be the Turia, the river of Valentia, and Segontia may be Saguntum. The
fact of Pompeius wintering among the Vaccæi is perhaps in favour of a
north-west Segontia; but still I think that Saguntum was the
battle-field. This battle is mentioned by Appian (_Civil Wars_, i.
110), who says that Pompeius lost six thousand men, but that Metellus
defeated Perperua, who lost about five thousand men.]

[Footnote 157: The Vaccæi occupied part of the country immediately
north of the Durius (Douro); but the limits cannot be accurately

[Footnote 158: Compare the Life of Lucullus, c. 5, and the Life of
Crassus, c. 11. The letter of Pompeius to the Senate is in the third
book of the Fragments of the Roman History of Sallustius. The letter
concludes with the following words, which Plutarch had apparently
read: "Ego non rem familiarem modo, verum etiam fidem consumpsi.
Reliqui vos estis, qui nisi subvenitis, invito et praedicente me,
exercitus hinc et cum eo omne bellum Hispaniae in Italiam

[Footnote 159: This appears to be the event which is described in the
fragment of the Second Book of the History of Sallustius, which is
preserved by Macrobius, _Saturnalia_, ii. 9, in the chapter "De

[Footnote 160: Compare the Life of Sulla, c. 11.]

[Footnote 161: See the Life of Sulla, c. 24.]

[Footnote 162: Kaltwasser quotes Reiske, who observes that Plutarch,
who wrote under the Empire, expresses himself after the fashion of his
age, when the Roman Cæsars lived on the Palatine.]

[Footnote 163: The treaty with Mithridates was made B.C. 75. This
Marius is mentioned in the Life of Lucullus, c. 8. Appian
(_Mithridatic War_, c. 68) calls him Marcus Varius, and also states
that Sertorius agreed to give Mithridates, Asia, Bithynia,
Paphlagonia, Cappadocia, and Galatia. In the matter of Asia the
narratives of Plutarch and Appian are directly opposed to one

[Footnote 164: This may be literally rendered "Marcus Marius together
with whom Mithridates having captured some of the Asiatic cities;"
Kaltwasser renders it, "in connection with him (Marcus Marius)
Mithrdates conquered some towns in Asia." But the context shows that
Marcus Marius was to be considered the principal, and that the towns
were not conquered in order to be given to Mithridates.]

[Footnote 165: Compare the Life of Lucullus, c. 20.]

[Footnote 166: Appian (_Civil Wars_, i. 112) does not mention this
massacre of the Iberian boys; but he states that Sertorius had become
odious to the Romans whom he now distrusted, and that he employed
Iberians instead of the Romans as his body-guard. He also adds that
the character of Sertorius was changed, that he gave himself up to
wine and women, and was continually sustaining defeats. These
circumstances and fear for his own life, according to Appian, led
Perperna to conspire against Sertorius (i. 113).]

[Footnote 167: Perhaps Octavius Gracimus, as the name appears in
Frontinus (_Stratagem._ ii. 5, 31).]

[Footnote 168: [Greek: tê bradutêti tês lalias.] τῆ βραδυτῆτι τῆς
λαλιᾶς The meaning of these words may be doubtful; but what I have
given is perhaps consistent with the Greek and with the circumstances.
There was some hesitation about beginning the attack, and the flagging
of the conversation was a natural consequence.

Sertorius was murdered B.C. 72, in the consulship of L. Gellius
Publicola and Cn. Cornelius Lentulus Clodianus, in the eighth year of
his command in Spain. (Livius, _Epitom._ 96.) Accordingly this places
the commencement of his command in B.C. 80; but he went to Spain in
B.C. 82, or at the end of B.C. 83. See Notes on c. 6. Appian (_Civil
Wars_, i. 114) states that when the will of Sertorius was opened it
was discovered that he had placed Perperna among his heredes, a
circumstance which throws doubt on the assertion of Appian that
Perperna was afraid that Sertorius intended to take his life. Appian
adds that when this was known, it created great enmity against
Perperna among his followers.

Plutarch's estimate of Sertorius may be a favourable one; yet he does
not omit to mention that act of his life which was most blamable, the
massacre of the youths at Osca. From the slight indications in
Frontinus, who found some material for his work on Military Stratagems
in the campaigns of Sertorius, and from other passages, we may collect
that, however mild the temper of Sertorius was, circumstances must
often have compelled him to acts of severity and even cruelty. The
difficulties of his position can only be estimated when we reflect on
the nature of a campaign in many parts of Spain and the kind of
soldiers he had under him. Promptitude and decision were among his
characteristics; and in such a warfare promptitude and decision cannot
be exercised at the time when alone they are of any use, if a man is
swayed by any other considerations than those of prudence and
necessity in the hour of danger. A general who could stab one of his
own men in the heat of battle, to prevent him dispiriting the army by
news of a loss, proved that his judgment was as clear as his
determination was resolved.

Plutarch's narrative is of no value as a campaign, and his apology
must be that he was not writing a campaign, but delineating a man's
character. Drumann _Geschichte Roms_, Pompeius, p. 350, &c.) has
attempted to give a connected history of this campaign against
Sertorius, and he has probably done it as well as it can be done with
such materials as we possess. The map of Antient Spain and Portugal
published by the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, will
be useful for reading the sketch in Drumann. Plutarch had no good map,
and, as already observed, he was not writing a campaign. Some modern
historical writers, who have maps, seem to have made very little use
of them; and their narrative of military transactions is often us
confused as Plutarch's.

The nature of Guerilla warfare in Spain may be learned from the
history of the Peninsular War. The difficulties of a campaign in
Navarre and the Basque provinces are well shown in the campaigns of
Zumalacarregui, the Carlist chief, a modern Sertorius, whose
extraordinary career was cut short by a chance ball before the walls
of Bilbao, in 1835. (Henningsen, _The most striking Events of a
Twelve-month's Campaign with Zumalacarregui_, London, 1836.)]

[Footnote 169: Metellus marched to another part of Spain, and left
Pompeius to deal with Perperna. According to Appian's narrative the
decisive action between Pompeius and Perperna took place "on the tenth
day," probably the tenth from the death of Sertorius. Pompeius would
not see Perperna after he was taken, and prudently put him to death.
"The death of Sertorius," says Appian, "was the end of the Spanish
war, and it is probable that if Sertorius had lived, it would not have
been terminated so soon, or so easily."]


I. The historian Douris tells us that the father of Eumenes of Kardia
was so poor that he was obliged to act as a waggoner; yet he gave his
son a liberal education both in mental and bodily exercises. While
Eumenes was yet a lad, Philip, King of Macedon, happened to come to
the city of Kardia, where he amused his leisure time by witnessing the
gymnastic exercises of the young men. Perceiving that Eumenes was one
of the most athletic, and that he was a manly and clever boy, Philip
took him away and attached him to his own person. A more probable
story is that Philip gave the boy this advancement out of regard for
his father, whose friend and guest he was. After the death of Philip,
Eumenes continued in the service of his son Alexander, and was thought
to be as wise and as faithful as any of that prince's servants. His
position was nominally that of chief secretary, but he was treated
with as much honour and respect as the king's most intimate friends,
and was entrusted with an independent command during the Indian
campaign. On the death of Hephæstion, Perdikkas was appointed to
succeed him, and Eumenes was given the post of commander of the
cavalry, vacated by Perdikkas. Upon this Neoptolemus, the chief of the
men-at-arms, sneered at Eumenes, saying that he himself bore a spear
and shield in Alexander's service, but that Eumenes bore a pen and
writing-tablets. However the Macedonian chiefs laughed him to scorn,
as they well knew the worth of Eumenes, and that he was so highly
esteemed that Alexander himself had done him the honour to make him
his kinsman by marriage. He bestowed upon him Barsine, the sister of
that daughter of Artabazus by whom he himself had a son named
Herakles, and gave her other sister Apame to Ptolemæus at the time
when he distributed the other Persian ladies among his followers.

II. Eumenes however was often in danger of incurring the displeasure
of Alexander, because of his favourite Hephæstion. On one occasion a
house was assigned to Evion, Hephæstion's flute-player, which the
servants of Eumenes had previously claimed for their master's lodging.
Hearing this, Eumenes went to Alexander in a rage, and complained that
it was better to be a flute-player than a soldier. At first Alexander
agreed with him, and blamed Hephæstion for his conduct. But afterwards
he changed his mind, and attributed what Eumenes had done to a desire
to insult himself, rather than to vindicate his rights against
Hephæstion. At another time, when Alexander was about to despatch
Nearchus with a fleet to explore the Atlantic, he asked his friends to
subscribe some money, as he had none in his treasury. The sum for
which Eumenes was asked was three hundred talents, of which he only
paid one hundred, and said that he had had great difficulty in
collecting even that amount. Alexander did not reproach him, nor take
the money from him; but he ordered his slaves secretly to set the tent
of Eumenes on fire, hoping when his property was brought out of it to
prove him to have lied in saying that he possessed so little money.
However the tent burned quicker than was expected, and Alexander was
sorry that he had destroyed all the papers and writings which it
contained. There was found in the ruins more than a thousand talents'
worth of gold and silver, melted by the heat of the fire. Of this
Alexander refused to take any, but sent orders to all the officers of
his kingdom to replace the accounts and writings which had been
destroyed. Once again too he quarrelled with Hephæstion about some
present to which each laid claim. They each abused the other roundly,
but Eumenes came off the victor. Shortly afterwards, however,
Hephæstion died, to the great grief of Alexander, who was enraged with
all those who had disliked Hephæstion when alive, and were pleased at
his death. He regarded Eumenes with especial hatred, and frequently
referred to his quarrels with Hephæstion. Eumenes, however, being a
shrewd man, determined that what seemed likely to become his ruin
should prove his salvation. He won Alexander's favour by inventing new
and extravagant modes of showing honour to his friend, and spent money
profusely in providing him with a splendid funeral.

III. When Alexander himself died, and the Macedonian army quarrelled
with its chiefs, he in reality espoused the cause of the latter,
although he declared that he belonged to neither party, modestly
observing that it was not for him, a stranger, to interfere in the
quarrels of Macedonians with one another. In the general division of
Alexander's conquests which then took place, Eumenes obtained
Cappadocia, Paphlagonia, and the coast of the Euxine sea as far as
Trapezus.[170] This country was not yet conquered by the Macedonians,
but was ruled by Ariarathes, and Leonnatus and Antigonus were
requested by Perdikkas to come with a large army to put Eumenes in
possession of his principality. Antigonus took no heed of this
command, as he was already revolving immense schemes of conquest, and
beginning to despise his colleagues. Leonnatus, however, did begin to
march an army towards Phrygia, intending to help Eumenes, but on the
way he was met by Hekatæus the despot of Kardia, who besought him to
assist the Macedonians under Antipater, who were being besieged in the
city of Lamia. Leonnatus on hearing this became eager to cross his
army over the straits into Europe; and consequently he sent for
Eumenes and reconciled him with Hekatæus. These two men had always
been at enmity with one another on political grounds. Eumenes had
often endeavoured to use his influence with Alexander to crush
Hekatæus, and restore liberty to the oppressed citizens of Kardia, and
never ceased accusing him of tyranny and injustice. On this occasion
Eumenes refused to take part in the expedition into Europe, stating
that he feared Antipater, who had always been his enemy, and who would
be very likely to assassinate him to please Hekatæus. In answer to
these objections Leonnatus unfolded to him his secret plans. His march
to relieve Antipater was merely intended as a pretence to cover his
real object, which was to attempt to make himself master of
Macedonia. He also showed Eumenes several letters which he had
received from Pella, in which Kleopatra offered to marry him if he
would march thither. However Eumenes, either because he feared
Antipater, or because he thought Leonnatus to be embarked upon a rash
and crazy enterprise, left him by night, taking with him all his
property. He was attended by three hundred horsemen, and two hundred
armed slaves, and had with him treasure to the amount of five thousand
talents. He fled at once to Perdikkas, and betrayed all Leonnatus's
plans to him, by which treachery he gained great favour with
Perdikkas, and soon afterwards was established in his government of
Cappadocia by an army led by Perdikkas himself. Ariarathes was taken
prisoner, the country subdued and Eumenes proclaimed satrap over it.
He distributed the government of the various cities amongst his
friends, established garrisons, courts of justice, and receivers of
revenue, as an absolute ruler, without any interference from
Perdikkas. But when Perdikkas left the country Eumenes followed him,
as he did not wish to be away from the court of that prince.

IV. However, Perdikkas considered that he was well able to carry out
his own designs abroad, but required an active and faithful lieutenant
to guard what he already possessed at home. Consequently when he
reached Cilicia he sent Eumenes back, nominally to his own government,
but really to observe Armenia where Neoptolemus was endeavouring to
raise a revolt. Eumenes had frequent interviews with this man, who was
of a flighty and vainglorious character, and tried to restrain him
from any act of open rebellion. Perceiving also that the Macedonian
phalanx was grown very strong, and gave itself most insolent airs, he
determined to raise up some counterpoise to it, in the shape of a
force of cavalry.

He set free from all taxes and state payments whatever those men of
his province who were able to serve as horse soldiers, and bestowed
fine horses, purchased by himself, upon their officers and those whom
he especially trusted. He divided them into regiments, frequently
bestowed upon them honours and rewards, and constantly exercised them
in the performance of military manœuvres. Some of the Macedonians
were alarmed, but others were delighted to see in how short a time he
had raised a force of no less than six thousand three hundred cavalry

V. When Kraterus and Antipater, having made themselves masters of
Greece, crossed over into Asia to destroy the kingdom of Perdikkas,
and were about to invade Cappadocia, Eumenes was appointed by
Perdikkas, who was absent on a campaign against Ptolemy, to be
commander-in-chief of the forces in Cappadocia and Armenia. He also
sent letters, ordering Neoptolemus and Alketas to place themselves
under the orders of Eumenes. Alketas at once refused to serve under
him, alleging that the Macedonian troops which he commanded would be
ashamed to fight against Antipater, and were willing to receive
Kraterus as their king. Neoptolemus also no longer concealed the
treachery which he had so long meditated, and when summoned by Eumenes
to join him, answered by drawing up his men in order of battle. Now
did Eumenes reap the fruits of his prudence and foresight; for though
his infantry was vanquished, yet his cavalry completely overthrew
Neoptolemus, and captured all his baggage. He also caught the phalanx
of the enemy when disordered by its victory, and forced it to
surrender at discretion, and swear allegiance to himself. Neoptolemus
fled with a few followers and joined Kraterus and Antipater, by whom
an embassy had been sent to Eumenes to offer him the peaceful
enjoyment of his government if he would join them, and likewise a
large accession of territory and force, on condition that he would
cease to regard Antipater with dislike and would not become an enemy
to his friend Kraterus. To these overtures Eumenes answered that he
had long hated Antipater, and was not likely to begin to love him now,
when he saw him making war against his own friends, but that he was
willing to act as mediator between Kraterus and Perdikkas, if they
wished to arrange a fair and honourable peace. He declared that as
long as he had breath in his body he would resist all unjust schemes
of spoliation, and would rather lose his life than betray the
confidence bestowed upon him by Perdikkas.

VI. When Eumenes returned this answer to Antipater, he was
deliberating what was the next step to take, when suddenly Neoptolemus
arrived bringing the news of his defeat, and begging for immediate
assistance. He wished one of the chiefs to accompany him, but
especially Kraterus, declaring that he was so popular with the
Macedonians that if they so much as caught sight of his broad-brimmed
Macedonian hat, and heard his voice, they would go over to him in a
body. Indeed the name of Kraterus had great influence with the
Macedonians, and he was their favourite general now that Alexander was
dead, for they remembered how steadfast a friend Kraterus had proved
to them, and how he had often incurred the anger of Alexander by
opposing his adoption of Persian habits, and standing by his
countrymen when they were in danger of being neglected and despised by
a corrupt and effeminate court. Kraterus accordingly sent Antipater
into Cilicia, and himself with the greater part of the army marched
with Neoptolemus to fight Eumenes, whom he imagined he should catch
unawares, engaged in feasting and celebrating his late victory. It did
not argue any very great skill in Eumenes, that he soon became aware
of the march of Kraterus to attack him; but to conceal his own weak
points, not only from the enemy, but also from his own troops, and
actually to force them to attack Kraterus without knowing against whom
they fought, appears to me to have been the act of a consummate
general. He gave out that Neoptolemus and Pigres were about to attack
him a second time, with some Cappadocian and Paphlagonian cavalry. On
the night when he intended to start he fell asleep and dreamed a
strange dream. He seemed to see two Alexanders, each at the head of a
phalanx, preparing to fight one another. Then Athena came to help the
one, and Demeter the other. After a hard fight, that championed by
Athena was overcome, and then Demeter gathered ears of corn, and
crowned the victorious phalanx with them. He at once conceived that
this dream referred to himself because he was about to fight for a
most fertile land and one that abounded in corn; for at that time the
whole country was sown with wheat, as if it were time of peace, and
the fields promised an abundant harvest. He was confirmed in his idea
of the meaning of his dream when he heard that the watchword of the
enemy was 'Athena,' with the countersign 'Alexander.' Hearing this, he
himself gave the word 'Demeter,' with the countersign 'Alexander,' and
ordered all his soldiers to crown themselves and adorn their arms with
ears of wheat. He was often tempted to explain to his officers who it
was against whom they were about to fight; but in spite of the
inconvenience of such a secret, he decided finally to keep it to

VII. He was careful not to send any Macedonians to attack Kraterus,
but entrusted this duty to two divisions of cavalry, which he placed
under the command respectively of Pharnabazus the son of Artabazus and
Phœnix of Tenedos. These he ordered, as soon as they saw the enemy, to
charge at full speed, and not to give them time for any parley, or to
send a herald; for he was grievously afraid that if the Macedonians
recognized Kraterus they would desert to him. He himself formed three
hundred of the best of his cavalry into a compact mass with which he
proceeded towards the right, to engage the detachment under
Neoptolemus. The main body, as soon as it had passed a small hill,
came in sight of the enemy and at once charged at full gallop.
Kraterus at this broke out into violent abuse of Neoptolemus, saying
that he had been deceived by him about the Macedonians who were to
have deserted. However, he called upon those about him to quit them
like men, and advanced to meet the horsemen.

The shock was terrible. Their spears were soon broken, and the fight
was continued with swords. Kraterus proved no unworthy successor of
Alexander, for he slew many and often rallied his troops, until a
Thracian rode at him sideways and struck him from his horse. No one
recognized him as he lay on the ground except Gorgias, one of the
generals of Eumenes, who at once dismounted and kept guard over him,
although he was grievously hurt and almost in the death-agony.

Meanwhile Eumenes encountered Neoptolemus. Each had a long-standing
grudge against the other; but it chanced that in the first two charges
which took place they did not see one another. The third time they
recognized one another, and at once drew their daggers and rode
together with loud shouts of defiance. With their reins flowing loose
they drove their horses against one another like two triremes, and
each clutched at the other as he passed, so that each tore the helmet
from the other's head, and burst the fastenings of the corslet upon
his shoulder. Both fell from their horses, and wrestled together in
deadly strife on the ground. As Neoptolemus strove to rise, Eumenes
struck him behind the knee, and leaped upon his own feet, but
Neoptolemus rested upon his other knee, and continued the fight until
he received a mortal stab in the neck. Eumenes through the mortal hate
which he bore him at once fell to stripping him of his armour and
abusing him, forgetting that he was still alive. He received a slight
stab in the groin, but the wound frightened Eumenes more than it hurt
him, as the hand that dealt it was almost powerless. Yet when Eumenes
had finished despoiling the corpse he found that he was severely cut
about the arms and thighs, in spite of which he remounted his horse,
and rode to the other side of the battle-field, where he thought the
enemy might still be offering resistance. Here he heard of the death
of Kraterus, and rode up to where he lay. Finding that he was still
alive and conscious, Eumenes dismounted, and with tears and
protestations of friendship cursed Neoptolemus and lamented his hard
fate, which had forced him either to kill his old friend and comrade
or to perish at his hands.

VIII. This victory was won by Eumenes about ten days after his former
one. He gained great glory from this double achievement, as he
appeared to have won one battle by courage and the other by
generalship. Yet he was bitterly disliked and hated both by his own
men and by the enemy, because he, a stranger and a foreigner, had
vanquished the most renowned of the Macedonians in fair fight. Now if
Perdikkas had lived to hear of the death of Kraterus, he would have
been the chief Macedonian of the age; but the news of his death
reached the camp of Perdikkas two days after that prince had fallen in
a skirmish with the Egyptians, and the enraged Macedonian soldiery
vowed vengeance against Eumenes. Antigonus and Antipater at once
declared war against him: and when they heard that Eumenes, passing by
Mount Ida where the king[171] used to keep a breed of horses, took as
many as he required and sent an account of his doing so to the Masters
of the Horse, Antipater is said to have laughed and declared that he
admired the wariness of Eumenes, who seemed to expect that he would be
called upon to give an account of what he had done with the king's
property. Eumenes had intended to fight a battle on the plains of
Lydia near Sardis, because his chief strength lay in his cavalry, and
also to let Kleopatra[172] see how powerful he was; but at her
particular request, for she was afraid to give umbrage to Antipater,
he marched into Upper Phrygia, and passed the winter in the city of
Kelainæ. While here, Alketas, Polemon, and Dokimus caballed against
him, claiming the supreme command for themselves. Hereupon Eumenes
quoted the proverb, "No one reflects that he who rules must die."

He now promised his soldiers that in three days he would give them
their pay, and accomplished this by selling the various fortified
villages and castles in the neighbourhood to them, all of which were
full of human beings to sell for slaves, and of cattle. The officers
who bought these places from Eumenes were supplied by him with
siege-artillery to take them, and the proceeds of the plunder were set
off against the arrears of pay due to the soldiers. This proceeding
made Eumenes very popular with his army, indeed, when a proclamation
was distributed in his camp by contrivance of the enemy, in which a
reward of a hundred talents and special honours were offered to the
man who would kill Eumenes, the Macedonians were greatly enraged, and
determined that a body-guard of one thousand men, of the best families
in Macedonia, should watch over his safety day and night. The soldiers
obeyed him with alacrity and were proud to receive from his hands the
same marks of favour which kings are wont to bestow upon their
favourites. Eumenes even took upon himself to give away purple hats
and cloaks, which is accounted the most royal present of all by the

IX. Success exalts even mean minds, and men always appear to have a
certain dignity when in high station and power; but the truly great
man proves his greatness more by the way in which he bears up against
misfortunes and endures evil days, as did Eumenes. He was defeated by
Antigonus in Southern Cappadocia by treachery, but when forced to
retreat he did not allow the traitor who had betrayed him to make good
his escape to Antigonus, but took him and hanged him on the spot. He
managed to retreat by a different road to that on which the enemy were
pursuing, and then suddenly turning about, encamped on the
battle-field of the day before. Here he collected the dead bodies,
burned them with the timber of the houses in the neighbouring
villages, and raised separate barrows over the remains of the officers
and the men--monuments of his hardihood and presence of mind which
excited the admiration of Antigonus himself when he again passed that
way. The two armies were still sometimes so near each other, that
Eumenes once had an opportunity of making himself master of the whole
of the enemy's baggage, which would have enriched his troops with an
immense booty. He feared that the possession of such wealth would
render them eager to quit his toilsome and perilous service, and sent
secret warning under the pretext of private friendship to Menander,
the general who had been left in charge of the baggage, and enabled
him to withdraw into an unassailable position. This seemingly generous
action excited the gratitude of the Macedonians, whose wives and
children it had saved from slavery and dishonour, till Antigonus
pointed out to them that Eumenes had spared them only that he might
not encumber himself.[173] X. After this, Eumenes, who was being
constantly pursued by a superior force, recommended the greater part
of his men to return to their homes. This he did either because he was
anxious for their safety, or because he did not wish to drag about
with him a force which was too small to fight, and too large to move
with swiftness and secrecy. He himself took refuge in the impregnable
fortress of Nora, on the borders of Cappadocia and Lycaonia, with five
hundred horse and two hundred foot soldiers, and dismissed from thence
with kind speeches and embraces, all of his friends who wished to
leave the fortress, dismayed by the prospect of the dreary
imprisonment which awaited them during a long siege in such a place.
Antigonus when he arrived summoned Eumenes to a conference before
beginning the siege, to which he answered, that Antigonus had many
friends and officers, while he had none remaining with him, so that
unless Antigonus would give him hostages for his safety, he would not
trust himself with him. Upon this Antigonus bade him remember that he
was speaking to his superior. "While I can hold my sword," retorted
Eumenes, "I acknowledge no man as my superior." However, after
Antigonus had sent his cousin Ptolemæus into the fortress, as Eumenes
had demanded, he came down to meet Antigonus, whom he embraced in a
friendly manner, as became men who had once been intimate friends and
comrades. They talked for a long time, and Eumenes astonished all the
assembly by his courage and spirit; for he did not ask for his life,
and for peace, as they expected, but demanded to be reinstated in his
government, and to have all the grants which he had received from
Perdikkas restored to him. The Macedonians meanwhile flocked round
him, eager to see what sort of man this Eumenes was, of whom they had
heard so much; for since the death of Kraterus no one had been talked
of so much as Eumenes in the Macedonian camp. Antigonus began to fear
for his safety; he ordered them to keep at a distance, and at last
throwing his arms round the waist of Eumenes conducted him back
through a passage formed by his guards to the foot of the fortress.

XI. After this Antigonus invested the place with a double wall of
circumvallation, left a force sufficient to guard it, and marched
away. Eumenes was now closely besieged. There was plenty of water,
corn, and salt in the fortress, but nothing else to eat or to drink.
Yet he managed to render life cheerful, inviting all the garrison in
turn to his own table, and entertaining his guests with agreeable and
lively conversation. He himself was no sturdy warrior, worn with toil
and hardships, but a figure of the most delicate symmetry, seemingly
in all the freshness of youth, with a gentle and engaging aspect. He
was no orator, but yet was fascinating in conversation, as we may
partly learn from his letters. During this siege, as he perceived that
the men, cooped up in such narrow limits and eating their food without
exercise, would lose health, and also that the horses would lose
condition if they never used their limbs, while it was most important
that, if they were required for a sudden emergency, they should be
able to gallop, he arranged the largest room in the fort, fourteen
cubits in length, as a place of exercise for the men, and ordered them
to walk there, gradually quickening their pace, so as to combine
exercise with amusement. For the horses, he caused their necks to be
hoisted by pulleys fastened in the roof of their stable, until their
fore feet barely touched the ground. In this uneasy position they were
excited by their grooms with blows and shouts until the struggle
produced the effect of a hard ride, as they sprung about and stood
almost erect upon their hind legs till the sweat poured off them, so
that this exercise proved no bad training either for strength or
speed. They were fed with bruised barley, as being more quickly and
easily digested.

XII. After this siege had lasted for some time, Antigonus learned that
Antipater had died in Macedonia, and that Kassander and Polysperchon
were fighting for his inheritance. He now conceived great hopes of
gaining the supreme power for himself, and desired to have Eumenes as
his friend and assistant in effecting this great design. He sent
Hieronymus of Kardia, a friend of Eumenes, to make terms with him.
Hieronymus proffered a written agreement to Eumenes, which Eumenes
amended, and thus appealed to the Macedonians who were besieging him
to decide between the two forms, as to which was the most just.
Antigonus for decency's sake had mentioned the names of the royal
family of Macedonia in the beginning of his agreement, but at the end
of it demanded that Eumenes should swear fealty to himself. Eumenes
corrected this by inserting the names of Queen Olympias and all the
royal family, and then took a solemn oath of fealty, not to Antigonus
alone, but to Olympias and all the royal house of Macedonia. This form
was thought more reasonable by the Macedonians, who swore Eumenes
according to it, raised the siege, and sent to Antigonus that he also
might swear in the same form as Eumenes. After this Eumenes delivered
up all the Cappadocian hostages in Nora, soon collected a force of
little less than a thousand men, from his old soldiers who were still
roaming about that country, and rode off with them, as he very rightly
distrusted Antigonus, who as soon as he heard of what had happened,
sent orders to the Macedonians to continue the siege, and bitterly
reproached them for allowing Eumenes to amend the form of oath
tendered to him.

XIII. While Eumenes was retreating he received letters from the party
in Macedonia opposed to Antigonus, in which Olympias begged him to
come and take the son of Alexander, whose life was threatened, under
his protection; while Polysperchon and Philip, the king, bade him take
the command of the army in Cappadocia and make war against Antigonus,
empowering him out of the treasure at Quinda to take five hundred
talents, as compensation for his own losses, and to make what use he
pleased of the remainder for the expenses of the war. He was also
informed that orders had been sent to Antigenes and Teutamus the
commanders of the Argyraspides, the celebrated Macedonian regiment
with the silver shields, to put him in possession of the treasure
which they had brought from Susa, and to place themselves with their
troops under his command.

Antigenes and Teutamus, on receiving these orders, received Eumenes
with all outward manifestations of friendship, but were really full of
concealed rage at being superseded by him. He, however, judiciously
allayed their wrath by refusing to take the money, which he said he
did not need, while as they wore both unwilling to obey and unable to
command, he called in the aid of superstition, and declared that
Alexander himself had appeared to him in a dream, as when alive,
arrayed in the ensigns of royalty, seated in his tent, and despatching
affairs of state, and he proposed that they should erect a magnificent
tent, should place a golden throne in the centre, on which should be
laid a diadem, sceptre and royal apparel, and that there they should
transact business as in the presence of the king. Antigenes and
Teutamus willingly agreed to this proposal, which flattered their
self-love by seeming to place them on an equality with Eumenes.

As they marched up the country they were met by Peukestas, a friend of
Eumenes, and by several other satraps, or provincial governors, who
came accompanied by considerable bodies of troops, whose numbers and
excellent equipment and discipline gave great encouragement to the
Macedonian soldiery.

But these satraps, since the death of Alexander, had become dissolute,
licentious, and effeminate princes, with all the vices of Eastern
despots. They perpetually intrigued and quarrelled with one another,
while they courted the Macedonians by profuse liberality, providing
them with magnificent banquets and unlimited wine, until they entirely
ruined the discipline of their camp, and led them to meditate choosing
their leaders by a popular vote, as is done in republican cities.
Eumenes, perceiving that the satraps mistrusted one another, but that
they all agreed in hating and fearing himself, and only wanted an
opportunity for having him assassinated, pretended to be in want of
money, and borrowed large sums from those whom he chiefly suspected of
designs against his person, so that he secured the safety of his
person by taking other men's money, an object which most people are
glad to attain by giving their own.

XIV. While the peace lasted, the Macedonian soldiery willingly
listened to the flattering promises of the satraps, each of whom
wished to raise a force and make war upon the others; but when
Antigonus moved to attack them with a large army, and a real general
was imperatively demanded to meet him, then not only the soldiers
implicitly obeyed Eumenes, but even those princes who during the peace
had affected such airs of independence lowered their tone and each
without a murmur proceeded to his appointed duty. When Antigonus was
endeavouring to cross the river Pasitigris, none of the confederates
except Eumenes perceived his design, but he boldly withstood him, and
in a pitched battle slew many men, filled the stream with corpses, and
took four thousand prisoners. And also, when Eumenes fell sick, the
Macedonians clearly proved that they knew that the others could give
them banquets and fair promises, but that he alone could lead them to

When the army was in Persia, Peukestas magnificently entertained all
the soldiers, giving each man a victim for sacrifice, and thought that
by this liberality he had quite won their hearts; but a few days
afterwards, when they came into the presence of the enemy, Eumenes
happened to be ill, and was being carried in a litter apart from the
noise of the march in order to obtain rest. As the army gained the
crest of some low hills they suddenly saw the enemy's troops marching
down into the plain below. As soon as they saw the head of the column,
with its gilded arms flashing in the sun, and the elephants with their
towers and purple trappings, ready for instant attack, the Macedonians
halted, grounded their arms, and refused to proceed until Eumenes
should put himself at their head, plainly telling their officers that
they dared not risk a battle without him for their leader. Eumenes at
once came to the front at full speed in his litter, of which he caused
the curtains on both sides to be drawn back, while he waved his hand
to them in delight. They, in return, greeted him in the Macedonian
fashion by shouts and the clash of their arms, and at once took up
their shields and levelled their lances with a loud cry, challenging
the enemy to come and fight them, for they now had a general to lead
them on.

XV. Antigonus, who had learned from prisoners that Eumenes was sick
and travelling in a litter, imagined that it would not be difficult to
overcome the others, and therefore hastened his march, hoping to bring
on a battle while Eumenes was still unable to command. When, however,
as he rode along the enemy's line he observed their admirable order
and arrangement, he hesitated to attack. At last he perceived the
litter proceeding from one wing to the other. Then, with a loud laugh,
as was his habit when joking with his friends, he exclaimed, "It is
that litter, it seems, that is manœuvring against us." Saying this,
he at once withdrew his forces and encamped at some little distance.
The army of Eumenes, however, soon afterwards, needing refreshment and
repose, forced their generals to place them in cantonments for the
winter in the district of Gabiene. These were so scattered, that the
whole army was spread over a distance of a thousand stades (or a
hundred and twenty-five English miles). Antigonus, hearing this,
marched suddenly to attack them by a very difficult road, on which no
water was to be found, but which nevertheless was very short and
direct. He hoped to fall upon the enemy while scattered in their
winter quarters, and defeat them before their generals could rally
them into a compact mass. But as he marched through a desert region
his army met with strong winds and bitter cold, so that the men were
forced to light large fires to warm themselves, and these gave notice
of their arrival to the enemy; for the natives who inhabited the
mountains near the line of Antigonus's march, when they saw the
numerous fires lighted by his troops, sent messengers on swift camels
to tell Peukestas what they had observed. He was much alarmed at the
news, and, noticing that the rest of the satraps shared his fears,
proposed to retreat to the opposite extremity of the province, where
they might at least reassemble a part of their force before the enemy
came up. Eumenes, however, calmed their fears by promising that he
would stop the progress of Antigonus, and prevent his coming to attack
them until three days after they expected him. His counsels prevailed,
and he at once despatched messengers to call the troops together out
of their winter quarters, and collect all the available force, while
he himself with the other generals rode to the front, and selecting a
spot which was plainly visible to those crossing the desert, ordered
fires to be lighted at intervals, as though an army were encamped
along the frontier awaiting the attack of Antigonus. The latter,
observing the heights covered with watch-fires, was filled with rage
and mortification, imagining that the enemy must long ago have known
his plans. Fearing to fight with his wearied troops against men who
were fresh and had been living in comfort, he turned aside from the
desert, and refreshed his army among some neighbouring villages.
When, however, he saw no enemy, or any signs of a hostile army being
near, and learned from the natives that no troops had been seen by
them, but only a large number of fires, he perceived that he had been
out-manœuvred by Eumenes, and marched forward in anger, determined to
settle their disputes by a pitched battle.

XVI. Meanwhile the greater part of the army of Eumenes had assembled,
and, admiring his stratagem, declared that he alone was fit to be
their leader. This so vexed the officers in command of the
Argyraspids, Antigenes, and Teutamus, that they determined to make
away with him, and they held a council with most of the satraps and
officers of the army to determine how best they might rid themselves
of him. They all agreed that it would be wisest to make use of his
talents in the approaching battle, and immediately after the battle to
assassinate him. This result of their deliberations was at once
betrayed to Eumenes by Eudamus, the officer in command of the
elephants, and Phædimus, not from any love they bore to him, but
through fear of losing the money which they had lent him. Eumenes
thanked them for their kindness, and afterwards observed to the few
friends whom he could trust, that he was living amongst a herd of
savage beasts. He withdrew to his tent, made his will, and destroyed
all his private papers, not wishing after his death to involve any one
in danger. After having made these arrangements, he thought of
allowing the enemy to win the victory, or of escaping through Armenia
and Media into Cappadocia. He came to no decided resolution while his
friends were present, but merely discussed the various chances which
presented themselves to his versatile intellect, and then proceeded to
array his troops in order of battle, uttering words of encouragement
to them all, whether Greek or barbarian, while he himself was received
with cheerful and confident shouts by the Argyraspids, who bade him be
of good cheer, as the enemy never could abide their onset. These men
were the oldest of the soldiers of Philip and Alexander, and had
remained unconquered in battle up to that time, although many of them
were seventy and none of them were less than sixty years old. They
now called out, as they moved to attack the troops of Antigonus, "Ye
are fighting against your fathers, ye unnatural children." Charging
with fury, they broke down all opposition, for no one could stand
before them, though most of the enemy died where they stood. On this
side Antigonus was utterly defeated, but his cavalry were victorious;
and through the base and unsoldierly conduct of Peukestas the whole of
the baggage fell into his hands, by his own great presence of mind and
the nature of the ground. This was a vast plain, not dusty, and yet
not hard, but like a sea-beach, composed of a light loose sand,
covered with a salt crust. Upon this the trampling of so many horses
and men soon raised a cloud of dust through which no object could be
seen, as it whitened the whole air and dazzled the eyes. Through this
Antigonus dashed unnoticed, and made himself master of the baggage,
together with the wives and children of the army of Eumenes.

XVII. When the battle was over, Teutamus at once sent to offer terms
for the recovery of the baggage. As Antigonus promised that he would
deliver everything up to the Argyraspids, and that their wives and
children should be kindly treated, if Eumenes were placed in his
hands, the Macedonians were treacherous and wicked enough to resolve
to deliver him alive into the hands of his enemies. With this intent
they drew near to him, on various pretexts, some lamenting their loss,
some encouraging him because of the victory he had won, and some
preferring charges against the other generals. Suddenly they fell upon
him, snatched away his sword, and bound his hands. When Nikanor was
sent to conduct him to Antigonus, he asked, while he was passing
through the ranks of the Macedonians, to be permitted to address them,
not with any intention of begging his own life, but that he might
clearly point out to them what was to their own advantage. Silence was
enforced, and Eumenes, standing on a hillock, held forth his fettered
hands, and spoke as follows:--"Basest of Macedonians, could Antigonus
ever have erected such a monument of your disgrace as you have set up
yourselves by surrendering your general to him? Is it not shameful for
you, who have conquered in the battle, to acknowledge yourselves
defeated because of your baggage, as though victory lay more in money
than in arms, so that you should ransom your baggage by delivering up
your general? I indeed am now being carried off captive, an
unconquered man, who has overcome his foes, but has been ruined by his
friends; but I beseech you in the name of the Zeus that protects
armies, and the gods who watch over the true keeping of oaths, kill me
here with your own hands; for I shall be slain by you no less when I
am put to death in the enemy's camp. Antigonus cannot complain of this
action of yours, for he wishes to receive Eumenes dead, and not alive.
If you are chary of your own hands to do the deed, one of mine will
suffice if you will loose it from its bonds. Or if you will not trust
me with a sword, then cast me, bound as I am, to be trampled on by the
elephants. If you will act thus I will acquit you of all blame, and
will declare that you have dealt with your general as became
honourable men."

XVIII. When Eumenes had spoken thus, all the army was grieved and
lamented his fate, but the Argyraspids called out that he must be
carried away, and no attention paid to his talk; for, they said, it
mattered little what fate befel a pestilent fellow from the
Chersonese, who had involved the Macedonians in endless wars and
troubles, but that it was not to be borne that the bravest of the
soldiers of Philip and Alexander, after their unheard-of exploits,
should in their old age be deprived of the fruits of their toils and
be forced to depend upon charity, or that their wives should pass a
third night in the enemy's camp. They at once hurried him away. When
he reached the enemy's quarters, Antigonus, fearing that he would be
crushed to death by the crowd (for not a man remained in the camp),
sent ten of the strongest elephants, and many Medes and Parthians,
armed with spears, to keep off the press from him. He himself could
not bear to see Eumenes, because they had once been friends and
comrades; and when he was asked by those who had charge of his person
how they were to treat him, answered, "Like an elephant, or a lion!"
After a while he felt compassion for his sufferings, and ordered his
heavy chains to be removed, appointed an attendant to anoint his
person, and allowed his friends to have free access to him and supply
him with provisions. A long debate took place for several days about
the fate of Eumenes, in which Nearchus, a Cretan, and the young
Demetrius, pleaded earnestly for him, while the other generals all
opposed them and pressed for his execution. It is said that Eumenes
himself inquired of his jailer, Onomarchus, what the reason was that
Antigonus, having got his enemy into his power, did not put him to
death quickly or else set him free honourably. When Onomarchus
insultingly answered that it was not then, but in the battle-field
that he ought to have shown how little he feared death, Eumenes
retorted, "I proved it there also; ask those whom I encountered; but I
never met a stronger man than myself." "Since then you have now met
with a stronger man than yourself," said Onomarchus; "why cannot you
patiently await his pleasure?"

XIX. When, therefore, Antigonus made up his mind to put Eumenes to
death, he ordered him to be kept without food. He lingered thus for
two or three days; but as the camp was suddenly broken up, men were
sent to despatch him. Antigonus restored his body to his friends, and
permitted them to burn it and collect the ashes in a silver urn to be
carried to his wife and children. The death of Eumenes was quickly
avenged by Heaven, which stirred up Antigonus to regard the
Argyraspids with abhorrence, as wicked and faithless villains. He
placed them under the command of Sibystius, the governor of Arachosia,
and gave him orders to employ them, by small parties at a time, upon
services which would ensure their destruction, so that not one of them
should ever return to Macedonia, or behold the Grecian sea.


[Footnote 170: Trebisond.]

[Footnote 171: Alexander.]

[Footnote 172: Plutarch tells us nothing of how Kleopatra came to
Sardis. See Thirlwall's 'History of Greece,' chap. lvii.]

[Footnote 173: Thirlwall's 'History,' chap. lvii.]


The above are all the particulars of the lives of Eumenes and
Sertorius which have come down to us, and which appear worth
recording. When we come to compare them, we find that each was an
exile from his native country, and commanded a numerous army of
foreign troops, although Sertorius enjoyed the great advantage of an
undisputed command, while Eumenes always had to contend with many
competitors for the first place, which nevertheless he always obtained
by his brilliant exploits. Sertorius was eagerly followed by men who
were proud to obey him, but Eumenes was only obeyed out of
self-interest, by men who were incompetent to lead. The Roman ruled
the tribes of Lusitania and Iberia, who had been long before conquered
by the Romans, while the Kardian led the Macedonians, when fresh from
the conquest of the world. Yet Sertorius was always looked up to as a
wise man and a consummate captain, whereas Eumenes was despised as a
mere quill-driver before he fought his way to the rank of general; so
that Eumenes not only started with less advantages, but met with much
greater difficulties, before he attained to distinction. Moreover,
Eumenes throughout his whole career was constantly opposed by open
enemies, and constantly had to make head against secret plots and
intrigues; whereas Sertorius was at first opposed by none of the
officers under his command, and at the very last only by a few. The
one had for his object merely to conquer his enemies, while the other,
after winning a victory, was obliged to defend himself against the
jealousy of his friends.

II. Their military achievements are pretty equally balanced; although
Eumenes was naturally fond of war and tumults, while Sertorius was of
a quiet and peaceful disposition. Thus it happened that Eumenes,
rather than dwell in comfortable and honourable retirement, passed his
whole life in war, because he could not be satisfied with anything
short of a throne; while Sertorius, who hated war, was forced to fight
for his own safety against foes who would not allow him to live in
peace. Antigonus would have made use of Eumenes as an officer with
pleasure, if the latter would have laid aside his designs upon the
throne of Macedonia; but Pompeius and his party would not so much as
allow Sertorius to live, although his only wish was to be at rest.

From this it resulted that the one of his own free will went to war to
obtain power, while the other was forced against his will to obtain
power in order to repel attacks.

The one died by an unexpected stroke, while the other long looked for
death, and at last even wished for it. In the first this shows a noble
and generous spirit, not to distrust his friends; while the latter
seems rather to argue weakness of purpose, for though Eumenes had long
intended to fly, yet he did not, and was taken. The death of Sertorius
did not disgrace his life, for he met at the hands of his friends with
that fate which none of his enemies could inflict upon him; but
Eumenes, who could not escape before he was taken prisoner, and yet
was willing to live after his capture, made a discreditable end; for
by his entreaties to be spared, he proved that his enemy had conquered
not merely his body but also his spirit.


Archidamus, the son of Zeuxidamus, king of Lacedæmon, after a glorious
reign, left one son, Agis, by a noble lady named Lampito, and a much
younger one, named Agesilaus, by Eupolia, the daughter of
Melesippides. As by the Spartan law Agis was the next heir, and
succeeded to the throne, Agesilaus was prepared for the life of a
private man, in that severe Spartan school by which obedience is
instilled into the youth of that country. For that reason it is said
that the epithet of 'man-subduing' is applied to Sparta by the poet
Simonides, because the Spartan customs render the citizens well
behaved, and amenable to discipline, like horses who are broken to
harness early in life. The direct heirs to the throne are not
subjected to this training; but in the case of Agesilaus it happened
that when he began to rule he had previously been taught to obey. This
rendered him by far the most popular of the kings of Sparta, because,
in addition to the haughty spirit that became a king, he had learned
to sympathize with the people over whom he ruled.

II. Agesilaus was an early and intimate friend of Lysander, as they
were both placed as boys in the same herd or troop for the purposes of
discipline. It was then that Lysander learned to admire the moderation
and self-restraint of Agesilaus, who, although he was ambitious and
high-spirited, with a most vehement and passionate desire to be first
in every kind of competition, was yet of a manageable and easily ruled
disposition, very sensitive to reproach, and far more afraid of blame
than of toils or dangers. The misfortune of his lame leg was almost
unnoticed, partly from the robust vigour of his frame, and also from
his own cheerful acknowledgment of this defect, being always the first
to joke about it. He sought by these means to remedy his lameness,
while his daring spirit never allowed it to prevent his undertaking
the most dangerous and laborious adventures. We have no record of his
appearance, for he himself never would consent to have his portrait
taken, and even when dying begged that no statue or painting of him
should be taken. We are, however, told that he was of small and mean
stature, but that his lively and cheerful temper, even in the most
trying situations, and the absence of anything harsh and overbearing
in his manners, made him more popular than many younger and handsomer
men even in extreme old age. The historian Theophrastus informs us
that the mother of Agesilaus was a very small woman, and that the
Ephors had fined Archidamus, on that special ground, for marrying her.
"She will not bring forth kings to rule us," said they, "but

III. During the reign of Agis, Alkibiades arrived in Lacedæmon as an
exile, having made his escape from the army in Sicily, and, after a
short sojourn, was universally believed to be carrying on an intrigue
with the king's wife, Timaea, insomuch that Agis refused to recognize
her child as his own, but declared that Alkibiades was its father. The
historian Douris tells us that Timaea was not altogether displeased at
this imputation, and that when nursing the child among her attendants
she was wont to call it Alkibiades instead of Leotychides. The same
authority states that Alkibiades himself declared that he seduced
Timaea, not out of wantonness, but with the ambitious design of
placing his own family upon the throne of Sparta. In consequence of
this, Alkibiades, fearing the wrath of Agis, left Sparta, and the
child was always viewed with suspicion by Agis, and never treated as
his own son, until in his last illness the boy by tears and entreaties
prevailed upon him to bear public witness to his legitimacy. But after
the death of Agis, Lysander, the conqueror of Athens, who was the most
important man in Sparta, began to urge the claims of Agesilaus to the
throne, on the ground that Leotychides was a bastard, and therefore
excluded from the succession. Many of the other citizens eagerly
espoused the cause of Agesilaus, because they had been brought up in
his company, and had become his intimate friends. There was, however,
one Diopeithes, a soothsayer, who was learned in prophetic lore, and
enjoyed a great reputation for wisdom and sanctity. This man declared
that it was wrong for a lame man to become king of Lacedæmon, and
quoted the following oracle:--

    "Proud Sparta, resting on two equal feet,
    Beware lest lameness on thy kings alight;
    Lest wars unnumbered toss thee to and fro,
    And thou thyself be ruined in the fight."

In answer to this, Lysander argued that the oracle really warned the
Spartans against making Leotychides king; for the god was not likely
to allude to actual lameness, which might not even be congenital, but
might arise from some accidental hurt, as disqualifying any one for
the office of king, but rather meant by a "lame reign," the reign of
one who was not legitimate, and not truly descended from Herakles.
Agesilaus also said that Poseidon bore witness to the illegitimacy of
Leotychides; for Agis was said to have been cast out of his
bed-chamber by an earthquake, after which he abstained from
approaching his wife, on religious grounds, for a period of more than
ten months, at the end of which Leotychides was born.

IV. Having been raised to the throne on those grounds, Agesilaus at
the same time acquired the large property left by the late king Agis,
as Leotychides was declared illegitimate and driven into exile. As his
own mother's family were respectable, but very poor, he distributed
half this property among them, thus making sure of their good will and
favour, and removing any jealousy which they might feel at his
elevation. Moreover, as Xenophon tells us, he gained the greatest
influence by always deferring to the wishes of his country, and thus
was really enabled to act exactly as he pleased. The whole power of
the state was at that time vested in the Ephors and the Senate of
Elders, of whom the Ephors are elected every year, while the Elders
sit for life. These two bodies were intended as a check upon the power
of the kings, who would otherwise have been absolute, as has been
explained in the Life of Lykurgus. Between these magistrates and the
kings there was generally a bad understanding; but Agesilaus adopted
an opposite line of conduct. He never attempted to oppose or thwart
the Ephors or the Senate, and even showed a marked deference to them,
referring the initiative of all state affairs to them, hurrying into
their presence when summoned, and rising from his royal throne
whenever they appeared, while he presented each senator, on his
election, with a cloak and an ox, to congratulate him on joining the
Senate. Thus he appeared to exalt the power of the Ephors and to court
their favour, but he himself was by far the greatest gainer, as his
own personal influence was greatly increased, and the power of the
crown much strengthened by the general good will which he inspired.

V. In his dealings with his fellow-citizens he is more to be praised
as an enemy than as a friend; for he would not act unjustly to injure
his enemies, but he sometimes disregarded justice in the interests of
his friends. He was of too generous a nature to refrain from
applauding even his enemies when they deserved it, but could not bear
to reproach his friends for their faults, which he delighted to share
with them, and to extricate them from the consequences, for he thought
nothing disgraceful if done to serve a friend.[174] He was also ever
ready to forgive and assist those with whom he had been at variance,
and thus won all hearts, and attained to a true popularity. The Ephors
indeed, perceiving this, imposed a fine upon him, alleging as a reason
for it that he was attaching the Spartans to his own person instead of
to the State. For just as physical philosophers tell us that if the
principle of strife and opposition were removed, the heavenly bodies
would stand still, and all the productive power of nature would be at
an end, so did the Laconian lawgiver endeavour to quicken the virtue
of his citizens by constructing a constitution out of opposing
elements, deeming that success is barren when there is none to resist,
and that the harmonious working of a political system is valueless if
purchased by the suppression of any important element. Some have
thought that the germ of this idea can be traced in Homer,[175] for he
would not have represented Agamemnon as rejoicing when Achilles and
Odysseus quarrel 'with savage words,' had he not thought that some
great public benefit would arise from this opposition and rivalry of
the bravest. But to this one cannot altogether agree; for party
strife, if carried to excess, proves most dangerous and ruinous to all

VI. Shortly after Agesilaus had been raised to the throne he received
news from Asia that the Persian king was preparing a large army with
which he intended to drive the Lacedæmonians into the sea. Upon
hearing this, Lysander was very eager to be sent out again to conduct
affairs in Asia, in order that he might be able to assist his own
friends and partizans, whom he had appointed as governors to many of
the cities in that country, but who had mostly been forcibly expelled
by the citizens for their insolent and tyrannical conduct. He
therefore urged Agesilaus to undertake a campaign in Asia as the
champion of Greece, and advised him to land upon some distant part of
the coast, so as to establish himself securely before the arrival of
the Persian army. At the same time he despatched instructions to his
friends in Asia, to send to Lacedæmon, and demand Agesilaus as their
general. In a public debate upon the subject, Agesilaus agreed to
conduct the war if he were furnished with thirty Spartans to act as
generals, and to form a council of war. He also demanded a force of
ten thousand picked men of the Neodamodes, or enfranchised Helots, and
six thousand hoplites, or heavy armed troops, from the allied cities
in Greece. By the active co-operation of Lysander all this was quickly
agreed upon, and Agesilaus was sent out with a council of thirty
Spartans, in which Lysander at once took the lead, not merely by his
own great name and influence, but by reason of his intimacy with
Agesilaus, through which it was supposed that this campaign would
raise him to more than kingly power. While the army was being
assembled at Geræstus, Agesilaus himself proceeded to Aulis with his
friends, and while sleeping there, he appeared in a dream to hear a
voice saying: "O king of the Lacedæmonians, since no one has ever been
commander-in-chief of all the Greeks, save you and Agamemnon alone, it
is fitting that you, since you command the same troops, start from the
same place, and are about to attack the same enemy, should offer
sacrifice to the same goddess to whom he sacrificed here before
setting out." Upon this there, at once, occurred to the mind of
Agesilaus the legend of the maiden who was put to death on that
occasion by her own father, in obedience to the soothsayers; but he
did not allow himself to be disturbed by this omen, but arose and told
the whole dream to his friends, observing that it was his intention to
pay all due honour to the goddess Artemis, but not to imitate the
barbarous conduct of Agamemnon. He now proceeded to hang garlands upon
a hind, and ordered his own soothsayer to offer it as a sacrifice,
disregarding the claims of the local Bœotian priest to do so. The
Bœotarchs, however, heard of this, and were greatly incensed at what
they considered an insult. They at once despatched a body of armed men
to the spot, who forbade Agesilaus to offer sacrifice there, contrary
to the ancestral customs of the Bœotians, and cast off the victim from
the altar where it lay. After this Agesilaus sailed away in great
trouble of mind, both from the anger he felt towards the Thebans, and
from the evil omen which had befallen him, as he feared that it
portended the failure of his Asiatic campaign.

VII. On his arrival at Ephesus, he was much offended by the great
power and influence possessed by Lysander, whose ante-chamber was
always crowded, and who was always surrounded by persons desirous of
paying their court to him. They evidently thought that although
Agesilaus might be nominally in command of the expedition, yet that
all real power and direction of affairs was enjoyed by Lysander, who
had made himself feared and respected throughout Asia, beyond any
other Greek commander, and had been able to benefit his friends and
crush his enemies more effectually than any one had previously done.
As all this was still fresh in the memory of all men, and especially
as they perceived the extreme simplicity and courteousness of
Agesilaus's manners and conversation, and observed, too, that Lysander
was still as harsh, rude, and imperious as before, they all looked up
to him alone as the virtual commander.

The other Spartan members of the council were deeply dissatisfied at
finding that Lysander treated them rather as though he were king and
they were merely there to ratify his decrees, than as their colleague
with powers no more extensive than their own; while Agesilaus himself,
who though he was above feeling any jealousy of the honours paid to
Lysander, yet was ambitious and covetous of honour, began to fear that
if any brilliant success should be achieved, the credit of it would be
given to Lysander alone. He therefore proceeded to oppose all
Lysander's plans, and if he knew that Lysander was interested in any
enterprise, he took care to put it off and neglect it, while he
successively rejected the petitions of every person in whom he knew
Lysander to take an interest. In judicial decisions also he invariably
acquitted those whom Lysander wished to punish, and condemned to pay
heavy fines those whom he endeavoured to serve. As this took place so
frequently that it could not be attributed to chance, but to a
systematic purpose, Lysander was forced to warn his partizans that his
intervention was an injury and not a benefit to them, and that they
must desist from their obsequious attentions to him, and address
themselves directly to the king.

VIII. As these remarks seemed intended to place the king's policy in
an invidious light, Agesilaus determined to humble him still further,
and appointed him his carver. He then said aloud in the hearing of
many persons, "Let them now go and pay their court to my carver."
Vexed at this insult, Lysander remonstrated with him, saying, "Truly,
Agesilaus, you know how to degrade your friends." "Ay, to be sure,"
answered he, "those among them who want to appear greater than I
am."[176] "Perhaps," replied Lysander, "you have spoken the truth, and
I have not acted rightly. Bestow on me, however, some post in which I
may be usefully employed without wounding your feelings."

Upon this, Lysander was despatched on a mission to the Hellespont,
where he found means to gain over a Persian noble named Spithridates,
who had received some offence from Pharnabazus, the satrap of that
province. Lysander induced this man to join Agesilaus with all his
property, and with a regiment of two hundred horse; yet he himself did
not forget his quarrel, and for the rest of his life assiduously
plotted to remove the succession to the throne of Sparta from the two
royal families, and to throw it open to all Spartans alike. It is
indeed probable that he would have raised an important commotion in
Sparta, had he not been slain in an expedition in Bœotia. Thus do
ambitious men do more harm than good in a state, unless they have an
unusual power of self-restraint. Lysander no doubt acted very
offensively, and made a very unreasonable display of his pride; yet
Agesilaus might have discovered some better method of correcting the
faults of so great a man. Indeed, in my opinion they were both equally
blinded by the same passion for personal aggrandizement, so that the
one forgot the power of his prince, and the other could not bear with
the shortcomings of his friend.

IX. Tissaphernes was at first afraid of Agesilaus, and began to treat
with him about setting free the Greek cities on the Ionian coast from
the power of the king of Persia. Afterwards, however, he imagined that
the force at his disposal justified him in breaking off these
negotiations, and he declared war, to the great delight of Agesilaus.
Great expectations had indeed been formed in Greece of the army of
Agesilaus, and it was thought a strange thing that ten thousand Greeks
under Xenophon should march through Persia to the sea, and defeat the
king of Persia's troops as often as they pleased, while Agesilaus, the
commander of the Lacedæmonians, the leading people in Greece, who were
all-powerful both by sea and land, should accomplish nothing. He now
revenged himself on the faithless Tissaphernes for his perjury by an
equal piece of deceit, and gave out that he was about to march into
Karia. When, however, the Persian army was assembled there, he
proceeded north-wards to Phrygia, where he took many cities, and
gained much plunder, pointing out to his friends that although to
solemnly plight one's word and then to break it is wrong, yet that to
out-manœuvre one's enemies is not only lawful, but profitable and
glorious. Being, however, deficient in cavalry, and warned by the omen
of a victim being found with an imperfect liver, he retired to
Ephesus, and there collected a cavalry force, giving rich men the
alternative of either serving themselves in his army, or of furnishing
a horse soldier instead. Many preferred to do so, and Agesilaus soon
possessed a force of warlike cavalry in the place of worthless foot
soldiers; for those who did not wish to serve personally hired men who
were willing to fight, and those who could not ride hired those who
could. Just so did Agamemnon act very wisely in receiving a valuable
mare, and thereby allowing a rich man to purchase his discharge from
military service. Agesilaus now gave orders that the heralds who
conducted the sale of captives by auction, should strip them of their
clothes, and put them up for sale in a state of perfect nudity. Their
clothes were sold separately, and the Greek soldiers laughed heartily
at the white and soft skins, which never had felt the sun or wind,
displayed by these Asiatics, and began to feel contempt for such
effeminate adversaries. Agesilaus himself, pointing first to the
captives themselves, and then to their clothes and other property,
observed, "These are the men with whom you have to fight, and these
are the things you fight for."

X. When the season for active operations returned he announced his
intention of marching into Lydia, not meaning thereby to deceive
Tissaphernes; but Tissaphernes deceived himself, for he distrusted
Agesilaus on account of his former stratagem. He therefore concluded
that it was Agesilaus's real intention to invade Karia, especially as
he was weak in cavalry, which could not act in that province. When,
however, Agesilaus, as he had announced, marched into the level
country near Sardis, Tissaphernes was obliged to hurry thither with
all speed; and by means of his cavalry he cut off many stragglers from
the Greek army. Agesilaus now perceived that the enemy's infantry had
not come up, while he had all his troops in hand. He at once
determined to fight, and having formed his cavalry and light-armed
troops into one mixed body he ordered them to advance at once and
attack the enemy, while he led on the heavy infantry in person. The
Persians were routed, and the Greeks, following up their victory, took
the enemy's camp with great slaughter. This victory not only enabled
them to plunder the king's territories undisturbed, but also gave them
the satisfaction of hearing that Tissaphernes, a bad man, and one for
whom all the Greeks felt an especial hatred, had at length met with
his deserts. Immediately after the battle the king of Persia sent
Tithraustes to him, who caused him to be beheaded. Tithraustes now
begged Agesilaus to make peace and leave the country, and offered him
money if he would do so. Agesilaus answered that he had no power to
make peace or war, but that such propositions must be referred to the
authorities at home; while as to money he said that he preferred
enriching his soldiers to enriching himself, and that among the Greeks
it was not considered honourable to receive bribes, but rather to take
plunder from their enemies. Nevertheless, wishing to oblige
Tithraustes, because he had avenged Greece upon that common enemy of
all, Tissaphernes, he removed his army into Phrygia, receiving a sum
of thirty talents from Tithraustes for the maintenance of his

During his march he received a despatch from the government of Sparta,
appointing him to the command of the naval as well as of the military
forces in Asia. He was now at the zenith of his fame and the greatest
man of his age, as Theopompus truly observes; yet he had more reason
to be proud of his virtue than of his power. He was thought, however,
to have committed an error in placing Peisander in command of the
fleet, disregarding the claims of older and more experienced men, and
preferring the advancement of his wife's brother to the interests of
his country.

XI. Having established his army in the province ruled by Pharnabazus,
he not only found abundance of provisions, but also was able to amass
much booty. He marched as far as the borders of Paphlagonia, and
gained the alliance of Kotys,[177] the king of that country.

Spithridatos, ever since he had revolted from Pharnabazus, had
constantly accompanied Agesilaus, together with his very handsome son,
named Megabates, of whom Agesilaus was greatly enamoured, and a fair
daughter. Agesilaus persuaded King Kotys to marry this girl, and
received from him a force of one thousand horsemen, and two thousand
light troops, called peltasts. With these he returned into Phrygia,
and laid waste the country of Pharnabazus, who dared not meet him in
the field, and feared to trust himself in any of his fortresses, but
hovered about the country, taking his valuable property with him, and
keeping his place of encampment as secret as he could. The watchful
Spithridates, however, at last found an opportunity to attack him,
and, with Herippidas the Spartan, took his camp and all his property.
On this occasion Herippidas acted with great harshness in ordering all
the plunder to be given up to be sold by auction, according to Greek
usage. He forced the barbarian allies to disgorge their booty, and
searched for all that had been captured in so offensive a manner that
Spithridates, in disgust at his conduct, at once went off to Sardis,
taking with him the entire Paphlagonian force.

We are told that Agesilaus was terribly chagrined at this. He felt
vexed at losing a good friend in Spithridates, and losing, too, a
large force with him, while he was ashamed of the character for
meanness and avarice which this miserable squabble would gain for
Sparta, especially as he had always prided himself on showing a
contempt for money both in politics and in private life.

XII. After this, Pharnabazus was desirous of conferring with him, and
a meeting was arranged between them by a friend of both, Apollophanes
of Kyzikus. Agesilaus arrived first, and sitting down upon some thick
grass under the shade of a tree, awaited the coming of Pharnabazus.
Presently Pharnabazus arrived, with soft rugs and curiously-wrought
carpets, but on seeing Agesilaus simply seated on the ground, he felt
ashamed to use them, and sat down on the ground beside him, although
he was dressed in a magnificent robe of many colours. They now greeted
one another, and Pharnabazus stated his case very fairly, pointing out
that he had done much good service to the Lacedæmonians during their
war with Athens, and yet that his province was now being laid waste by
them. Seeing all the Spartans round him hanging down their heads with
shame, and not knowing what to answer because they knew that what
Pharnabazus said was true, Agesilaus said: "We Spartans, Pharnabazus,
were formerly at peace with your king, and then we respected his
territory as that of a friend. Now we are at war with him, and regard
all his property as that of an enemy. Now as we see that you still
wish to belong to the king, we very naturally endeavour by injuring
you to injure him. But from the day on which you shall declare that
you will be a friend and ally of the Greeks rather than a slave of the
king of Persia, you may regard this fleet and army and all of us, as
the guardians of your property, of your liberty, and of all that makes
life honourable and enjoyable." In answer to this, Pharnabazus said:
"If the king shall send any other general, and put me under him, I
will join you. But if he places me in command, I will cheerfully obey
him, and will fight you and do you all the mischief in my power."

Agesilaus was struck by the high-minded tone of this reply, and at
once rose and took him by the hand, saying, "Would to God,
Pharnabazus, that such a man as you might become our friend rather
than our enemy."

XIII. As Pharnabazus was retiring with his friends, his son stayed
behind, and running up to Agesilaus said with a smile, "Agesilaus, I
make you my guest,"[178] and gave him a fine javelin which he carried
in his hand.

Agesilaus gladly accepted this offer, and, delighted with the engaging
manners and evident friendship of the young man, looked round for some
suitable present, and seeing that the horse of his secretary Idæus was
adorned with fine trappings, took them off and gave them to the boy.
Agesilaus never forgot the connection thus formed between them, but in
after days, when the son of Pharnabazus was impoverished and driven
into exile by his brother, he welcomed him to the Peloponnese, and
provided him with protection and a home. He even went so far as to
employ his influence in favour of an Athenian youth to whom the son of
Pharnabazus was attached. This boy had outgrown the age and size of
the boy-runners in the Olympic stadium, and was consequently refused
leave to compete in that race. Upon this the Persian made a special
application to Agesilaus on his behalf; and Agesilaus, willing to do
anything to please his protégé, with great difficulty and management
induced the judges to admit the boy as a competitor. This, indeed, was
the character of Agesilaus, disinterested and just in all matters
except in furthering the interests of his friends, in which case he
seems to have hesitated at nothing. A letter of his to Idrilus, the
Karian, runs as follows: "If Nikias be innocent, acquit him; if he be
guilty, acquit him for my sake; but in any case acquit him." Such was
Agesilaus in most cases where his friends were concerned; although in
some few instances he allowed expediency to prevail over affection,
and sacrificed his personal friend to the general advantage, as, for
example, once, when owing to a sudden alarm the camp was being
hurriedly broken up, he left a sick friend behind in spite of his
passionate entreaties, observing as he did so, that it is hard to be
wise and compassionate at the same time. This anecdote has been
preserved by the philosopher Hieronymus.

XIV. Agesilaus was now in the second year of his command in Asia, and
had become one of the foremost men of his time, being greatly admired
and esteemed for his remarkable sobriety and frugality of life. When
away from his headquarters he used to pitch his tent within the
precincts of the most sacred temples, thus making the gods witnesses
of the most private details of his life. Among thousands of soldiers,
moreover, there was scarcely one that used a worse mattress than
Agesilaus. With regard to extremes of heat and cold, he seemed so
constituted as to be able to enjoy whatever weather the gods might
send. It was a pleasant and enjoyable spectacle for the Greek
inhabitants of Asia to see their former tyrants, the deputy governors
of cities and generals of provinces, who used to be so offensively
proud, insolent, and profusely luxurious, now trembling before a man
who walked about in a plain cloak, and altering their whole conduct in
obedience to his curt Laconian sayings. Many used to quote the proverb
of Timotheus, that "Ares alone is king, and Hellas fears not the power
of gold."

XV. The whole of Asia Minor was now excited, and ripe for revolt.
Agesilaus established order[179] in the cities on the coast by mild
measures, without either banishing or putting to death any of the
citizens, and next determined to advance farther, and transfer the
theatre of war from the Ionic coast to the interior. He hoped thus to
force the Persian king to fight for his very existence, and for his
pleasant palaces at Susa and Ecbatana, and at any rate to keep him
fully employed, so that from henceforth he might have no leisure or
means to act as arbitrator between the Greek states in their disputes,
and to corrupt their statesmen by bribes. At this crisis, however,
there arrived the Spartan Epikydides. He announced that Sparta was
involved in an important war with Thebes and other Greek states, and
brought an imperative summons from the ephors to Agesilaus to return
at once and assist his countrymen at home.

    "O Greeks, that will upon yourselves impose
    Such miserable, more than Persian woes."

It is pitiable to think of the malevolence and ill-will which produced
this war, and arrayed the states of Greece against one another,
putting a stop to such a glorious career of conquest at its very
outset, exchanging a foreign for a civil war, and recalling the arms
which were being used against the Persians to point them at Grecian
breasts. I cannot agree with the Corinthian, Demaratus, when he says
that those Greeks who did not see Alexander seated upon the throne of
Darius lost one of the most delightful spectacles in the world. I
think they would have been more likely to weep when they reflected
that this conquest was left for Alexander and the Macedonians to
effect, by those Greek generals who wasted the resources of their
country in the battles of Leuktra and Koronea, Corinth and Mantinea.
Still, nothing is more honourable to Agesilaus than the promptitude
with which he withdrew from Asia, nor can we easily find another
example of straightforward obedience and self-sacrifice in a general.
Hannibal was in great difficulties and straits in Italy, and yet
yielded a very unwilling obedience when summoned home to protect
Carthage, while Alexander merely sneered at the news of the battle
between Agis and Antipater, observing, "It appears, my friends, that
while we have been conquering Darius here, there has been a battle of
mice in Arcadia."

Well then does Sparta deserve to be congratulated on the love for her
and the respect for her laws which Agesilaus showed on this occasion,
when, as soon as the despatch reached him, he at once stopped his
prosperous and victorious career, gave up his soaring hopes of
conquest, and marched home, leaving his work unfinished, regretted
greatly by all his allies, and having signally confuted the saying of
Phæax the son of Erasistratus, that the Lacedæmonians act best as a
state, and the Athenians as individuals. He proved himself indeed to
be a good king and a good general, but those who know him most
intimately prized him more as a friend and companion than as either a
king or a soldier.

The Persian gold coins bore the device of an archer: and Agesilaus as
he broke up his camp observed that he was being driven out of Asia by
ten thousand archers, meaning that so many of these coins had been
distributed among the statesmen of Athens and Thebes, to bribe them
into forcing those countries to go to war with Sparta.

XVI. He now crossed the Hellespont and proceeded through Thrace. Here
he did not ask leave of any of the barbarian tribes to traverse their
country, but merely inquired whether they would prefer him to treat
them as friends or as enemies during his passage. All the tribes
received him in a friendly manner and escorted him through their land,
except the Trallians,[180] to whom it is said that Xerxes himself gave
presents, who demanded from Agesilaus a hundred talents of silver and
a hundred female slaves for his passage. He answered, "Why did they
not come at once and take them;" and immediately marched into their
country, where he found them strongly posted, and routed them with
great slaughter.

He made the same enquiry, about peace or war, of the King of
Macedonia, and on receiving the answer that he would consider the
question, "Let him consider," said he, "but let us march in the
meanwhile." Struck with admiration and fear at his daring, the king
bade him pass through as a friend. On reaching the country of
Thessaly, he found the Thessalians in alliance with the enemies of
Sparta, and laid waste their lands. He sent however Xenokles and
Skythes to Larissa, the chief town in Thessaly, to arrange terms of
peace. These men were seized upon by the Thessalians and cast into
prison, at which the army was greatly excited, thinking that Agesilaus
could do no less than besiege and take Larissa. He, on the other hand,
said that he valued the lives of either of these two men more than all
Thessaly, and obtained their release by negotiation. This ought not to
surprise us in Agesilaus, for when he heard of the great battle at
Corinth where so many distinguished men fell, and where though many of
the enemy perished the Spartan loss was very small, he showed no signs
of exultation, but sighed heavily, and said, "Alas for Greece, that
she should by her own fault have lost so many men, who if they were
alive could conquer all the barbarians in the world."

The Thessalian tribe of the Pharsalians[181] now attacked his army,
upon which he charged them with five hundred horse, and having routed
them erected a trophy near Mount Narthakius. Agesilaus took great
pride in this victory, because in it he had defeated the Thessalian
horsemen, supposed to be the best in Greece, with cavalry disciplined
by himself in Asia.

XVII. He was here met by Diphridas the Ephor, who brought him orders
to invade Bœotia immediately. Although he had intended to make more
extensive preparations, he thought it right at once to obey, and
informed his friends that the day for which they had marched all the
way from Asia would soon be at hand. He also sent for a reinforcement
of two moras[182] from the army at Corinth. The Lacedæmonium
government at home, also, wishing to do him honour, made proclamation
that whosoever would might enrol himself to serve the King. All
eagerly gave in their names, and from them the ephors selected fifty
of the strongest, whom they sent to Agesilaus as a body-guard. He now
marched through Thermopylæ, crossed the friendly country of Phokis,
and entered Bœotia near Chæronea. While encamped there, he observed
that the sun was eclipsed and became crescent-shaped, and at the same
time came the news of the defeat and death of Peisander in a great
sea-fight off Knidus, against Pharnabazus and Konon the Athenian.
Agesilaus was naturally grieved both at his brother-in-law's death and
at the disaster which had befallen Sparta, but as he feared to damp
the courage of his soldiers on the eve of battle, he ordered the
messengers to spread the contrary intelligence, that the Spartans had
been victorious in the sea-fight, and he himself appeared with a
garland on his head, offered sacrifice as though he had heard good
news, and distributed portions of the meat to his friends, as presents
of congratulation.

XVIII. Proceeding on his march through Bœotia he reached Koroneia,
where he came into the presence of the enemy, and arrayed his forces
for battle, placing the men of Orchomenos[183] on the left wing, while
he led the right in person. In the army of the allies the Thebans
formed the right, and the Argives the left wing. Xenophon informs us
that this battle was the most furiously contested one that ever was
known. He himself was an eye-witness of it, as he had served with
Agesilaus during his Asiatic campaign, and had accompanied him on his
return to Europe. The first shock was not very severe, as the Thebans
easily overthrew the Orchomenians, while Agesilaus with equal ease
routed the Argives. When, however, each of these victorious bodies
heard that their left was hard pressed and retiring, they at once
ceased from following up their success and halted where they stood.
Agesilaus might now easily have won a partial victory, by allowing the
Thebans to pass back again through his own lines and attacking them as
they did so. Instead of this, his fierce spirit led him to form his
troops in close order and attack them front to front. The Thebans
fought with no less courage, and a terrible battle raged all along the
line, but most fiercely at the point where the chosen body-guard of
fifty men fought round the Spartan king. The courage of these men
saved the life of Agesilaus, for they recklessly exposed themselves in
his defence, and by their exertions, although they could not prevent
his being severely wounded, yet by receiving on their bodies through
their shields and armour many blows which were intended for him, they
succeeded in dragging him from where he had fallen among the enemy,
and formed a bulwark around him, slaying many of the enemy, but with
great loss to themselves.

The Lacedæmonians, unable to force back the Thebans, were at length
compelled to open their ranks, and let them pass through, which at
first they had scorned to do. They then assailed them on the flanks
and rear as they passed. Yet they could not boast of having conquered
the Thebans, who drew off and rejoined their comrades on Mount
Helikon, with the proud conviction that in the battle they at any rate
had not been defeated.

XIX. Agesilaus, although suffering from many wounds, refused to go to
his tent before he had been carried on men's shoulders round the army,
and had seen all the dead brought off the field of battle. He gave
orders that some Thebans who had taken refuge in a neighbouring temple
should be dismissed unharmed. This was the temple of Athena Itonia,
and before it stands a trophy, erected by the Bœotians under Sparton,
many years before, in memory of a victory which they had won over the
Athenians under Tolmides, who fell in that battle.

Next morning Agesilaus, wishing to discover whether the Thebans would
renew the contest, ordered his soldiers to crown themselves with
garlands, and the flute-players to play martial music while a trophy
was erected in honour of the victory. When the enemy sent to ask for a
truce for the burial of their dead, he granted it, and having thus
confirmed his victory, caused himself to be carried to Delphi. Here
the Pythian games were being celebrated, and Agesilaus not only took
part in the procession in honour of the god, but also dedicated to him
the tithe of the spoils of his Asiatic campaign, which amounted to one
hundred talents.

On his return home, he was loved and admired by all his
fellow-countrymen for his simple habits of life; for he did not, like
so many generals, return quite a different man, corrupted by foreign
manners, and dissatisfied with those of his own country, but, just
like those who had never crossed the Eurotas, he loved and respected
the old Spartan fashions, and would not alter his dining at the public
table, his bath, his domestic life with his wife, his care of his
arms, or the furniture of his house, the doors of which we are told by
Xenophon, were so old that it was thought that they must be the
original ones put up by Aristodemus. Xenophon also tells us that the
_kanathrum_ of his daughter was not at all finer than that of other

A _kanathrum_ is a fantastic wooden car, shaped like a griffin or an
antelope, in which children are carried in sacred processions.
Xenophon does not mention the name of Agesilaus's daughter, and
Dikæarchus is much grieved at this, observing that we do not know the
name either of the daughter of Agesilaus or of the mother of
Epameinondas; I, however, have discovered, by consulting Lacedæmonium
records, that the wife of Agesilaus was named Kleora, and that she had
two daughters, named Eupolia and Prolyta. His spear also may be seen
at the present day in Sparta, and differs in no respect from that of
any other Lacedæmonium.

XX. Perceiving that many of his countrymen bred horses, and gave
themselves great airs in consequence, he induced his sister Kyniske to
enter a four-horse chariot for the race at Olympia, to prove to them
that the winning of this prize depends not upon a man's courage, but
upon his wealth, and the amount of money which he spends upon it. As
Xenophon the philosopher was still with him, he advised him to send
for his sons and educate them in Lacedæmon, that they might learn the
most important of all lessons, to command and to obey.

Lysander was now dead, but Agesilaus found still existing an important
conspiracy against himself, which Lysander had set on foot when he
returned from Asia. Agesilaus now eagerly undertook to prove what
Lysander's true character had been; and having read amongst the papers
of the deceased that speech which Kleon of Halikarnassus wrote for
him, treating of reforms and alterations of the constitution, which
Lysander meant some day to address to the people of Sparta, he wished
to make it public. However, one of the senators, after reading the
speech, was alarmed at the plausible nature of the argument which it
contained, and advised Agesilaus not to dig Lysander out of his grave,
but rather to bury the speech with him. This advice caused Agesilaus
to desist from his project. He never openly attacked his political
enemies, but contrived to get them appointed generals and governors of
cities. When they displayed their bad qualities in these posts and
were recalled to take their trial he used to come forward as their
friend and by his exertions on their behalf make them his active
partisans instead of his enemies, so that before long he succeeded in
breaking up the party which was opposed to him, and reigned alone
without any rival; for the other king, Agesipolis, whose father had
been an exile, and who was himself very young, and of a mild and
unassuming temper, counted for nothing in the state. Agesilaus won
over this man also, and made a friend of him; for the two kings dine
at the same _phiditium_, or public table, when they are at Sparta.
Knowing Agesipolis, like himself, to be prone to form attachments to
young men, he always led the conversation to this subject, and
encouraged the young king in doing so; for these love affairs among
Lacedæmonians have in them nothing disgraceful, but produce much
modest emulation and desire for glory, as has been explained in the
Life of Lykurgus.

XXI. Being now the most powerful man in Sparta, Agesilaus obtained the
appointment of admiral of the fleet for Teleutias, his half-brother;
and thereupon making an expedition against Corinth, he made himself
master of the long walls by land, through the assistance of his
brother at sea. Coming thus upon the Argives, who then held Corinth,
in the midst of their Isthmian festival, he made them fly just as they
had finished the customary sacrifice, and leave all their festive
provision behind them. Upon this the Corinthian exiles[184] who were
with him begged him to preside over the games, but this he refused to
do, ordering them to celebrate the festival, while he took care that
they did so without interruption. After he was gone the Argives
returned, and celebrated the Isthmian games over again. Some of the
winners on the former occasion now won the prize again, while others
were defeated. Agesilaus observed that the Argives by this act
confessed themselves to be cowards, if they set so high a value on
presiding at the games, and yet did not dare to fight for it. With
regard to such matters he used to think that a middle course was best,
and he always was present at the choruses and games at Sparta, taking
great interest in their management, and not even neglecting the races
for boys and for girls; but of some other matters in which most men
were interested he seemed to be entirely ignorant. For instance
Kallipides, who was esteemed the finest tragic actor in Greece, once
met him and spoke to him, after which he swaggered along amongst his
train, but finding that no notice was taken of him, he at length
asked, "Do you not know me, O king?" Agesilaus at this looked
carefully at him, and enquired, "Are you not Kallipides the player?"
for so the Lacedæmonians name actors. Again, when he was invited to
hear some one imitate the nightingale he answered, "I have heard the

Menekrates the physician, after having succeeded in curing some cases
of sickness which were thought to be desperate, was given the title of
Zeus, and used to use this appellation on all occasions in a foolish
manner. He even went so far as to write to Agesilaus in the following
terms, "Menekrates Zeus wishes King Agesilaus health." To this he
answered, "King Agesilaus wishes Menekrates more sense."

XXII. While he was encamped in the temple of Hera, near Corinth,
watching the soldiers disposing of the captives which they had taken,
ambassadors came from Thebes to treat for peace with him. He always
had borne a grudge against that city, and thinking that this would be
a good opportunity to indulge his hatred, he pretended neither to see
nor to hear them when they addressed him. But he soon paid the
penalty of his insolence; for before the Thebans left him news was
brought that an entire mora had been cut to pieces by Iphikrates. This
was the greatest disaster which had befallen the Spartans for many
years; for they lost a large number of brave and well-equipped
citizens, all heavy-armed hoplites, and that too at the hands of mere
mercenary light troops and peltasts. On hearing this Agesilaus at
first leaped up to go to their assistance; but when he heard that they
were completely destroyed, he returned to the temple of Hera, and
recalling the Bœotian ambassadors, bade them deliver their message.
But they now in their turn assumed a haughty demeanour, and made no
mention of peace, but merely demanded leave to proceed to Corinth. At
this, Agesilaus in a rage answered, "If you wish to go there to see
your friends rejoicing over their success, you will be able to do so
in safety to-morrow." On the next day he took the ambassadors with
him, and marched, laying waste the country as he went, up to the gates
of Corinth, where, having thus proved that the Corinthians dared not
come out and resent his conduct, he sent the ambassadors into the
city. As for himself, he collected the survivors of the mora, and
marched back to Lacedæmon, always starting before daybreak, and
encamping after sunset, that he might not be insulted by the
Arcadians, who bitterly hated the Lacedæmonians and enjoyed their
discomfiture. After this at the instance of the Achæans he crossed
over into Akarnania with them, where he obtained much plunder, and
defeated the Akarnanians in battle. The Achæans now begged him to
remain, and so prevent the enemy from sowing their fields in the
winter; but he answered that he should do exactly the reverse,
because, if the enemy next year had a good prospect of a harvest, they
would be much more inclined to keep the peace than if their fields lay
fallow. And this opinion of his was justified by the result; for as
soon as the Akarnanians heard that another campaign was threatened,
they made peace with the Achæans.

XXIII. Konon and Pharnabazus, after their victory in the sea-fight at
Knidus, had obtained command of the seas and began to plunder the
coast of Laconia, while the Athenian walls likewise were restored,
with money supplied by Pharnabazus for that purpose.

These circumstances disposed the Lacedæmonians to make peace with the
king of Persia. They consequently sent Antalkidas to Tiribazus to
arrange terms, and most basely and wickedly gave up to the king those
Greek cities in Asia on behalf of which Agesilaus had fought.
Antalkidas, indeed, was his enemy, and his great reason for concluding
a peace on any terms was, that war was certain to increase the
reputation and glory of Agesilaus. Yet when some one reproached
Agesilaus, saying that the Lacedæmonians were Medising,[185] he
answered, "Nay, say, rather, the Medes (Persians) are Laconising."

By threats of war he compelled those Greek states who were unwilling
to do so to accept the terms of the peace, especially the Thebans; for
one of the articles of the peace was, that the Thebans should leave
the rest of Bœotia independent, by which of course they were greatly
weakened. This was proved by subsequent events. When Phœbidas, in
defiance of law and decency, seized the Kadmeia, or citadel of Thebes,
in time of peace, all Greeks cried shame on him, and the Spartans felt
especial annoyance at it. The enemies of Agesilaus now angrily
enquired of Phœbidas who ordered him to do so, and as his answers
hinted at Agesilaus as having suggested the deed, Agesilaus openly
declared himself to be on Phœbidas's side, and said that the only
thing to be considered was, whether it was advantageous to Sparta or
not; for it was always lawful to render good service to the state,
even impromptu and without previous orders. Yet in his talk Agesilaus
always set a high value upon justice, calling it the first of all
virtues; for he argued that courage would be useless without justice;
while if all men were just, there would be no need of courage. When he
was informed, "The pleasure of the great king is so-and-so," he was
wont to answer, "How can he be greater than I, unless he be
juster?"--thus truly pointing out that justice is the real measure of
the greatness of kings. When the king of Persia sent him a letter
during the peace, offering to become his guest[186] and friend, he
refused to open it, saying that he was satisfied with the friendship
existing between the two states, and that while that lasted he
required no private bond of union with the king of Persia. However, in
his actions he was far from carrying out these professions, but was
frequently led into unjust acts by his ambition. In this instance he
not only shielded Phœbidas from punishment for what he had done at
Thebes, but persuaded Sparta to adopt his crime as its own, and
continue to hold the Kadmeia, appointing as the chiefs of the garrison
Archias and Leontidas,[187] by whose means Phœbidas made his way into
the citadel.

XXIV. This at once gave rise to a suspicion that Phœbidas was merely
an agent, and that the whole plot originated with Agesilaus himself,
and subsequent events confirmed this view; for as soon as the Thebans
drove out the garrison and set free their city, Agesilaus made war
upon them to avenge the murder of Archias and Leontidas, who had been
nominally polemarchs, but in reality despots of Thebes. At this period
Agesipolis was dead, and his successor Kleombrotus was despatched into
Bœotia with an army; for Agesilaus excused himself from serving in
that campaign on the ground of age, as it was forty years since he had
first borne arms, and he was consequently exempt by law. The real
reason was that he was ashamed, having so lately been engaged in a war
to restore the exiled popular party at Phlius, to be seen now
attacking the Thebans in the cause of despotism.

There was a Lacedæmonium named Sphodrias, one of the faction opposed
to Agesilaus, who was established as Spartan governor of the town of
Thespiæ, a daring and ambitious man, but hot-headed, and prone to act
without due calculation. This man, who longed to achieve distinction,
and who perceived that Phœbidas had made a name throughout Greece by
his exploit at Thebes, persuaded himself that it would be a much more
glorious deed if he were to make himself master of the Peiræus, and so
by a sudden attack cut off the Athenians from the sea. It is said that
this attempt originated with the Bœotarchs, Pelopidas and Mellon, who
sent emissaries to Sphodrias to praise and flatter him, and point out
that he alone was capable of conducting so bold an adventure. By this
language, and an affectation of sympathy with Lacedæmon, these men at
length prevailed on him to attempt a most unrighteous deed, and one
which required considerable boldness and good fortune to ensure its
success. Daylight, however, overtook Sphodrias before he had crossed
the Thriasian plain, near Eleusis. All hope of surprising Peiræus by a
night attack was now gone, and it is said, also, that the soldiers
were alarmed and terror-stricken by certain lights which gleamed from
the temples at Eleusis. Sphodrias himself, now that his enterprise had
so manifestly failed, lost heart, and after hurriedly seizing some
unimportant plunder, led his men back to Thespiæ. Upon this an embassy
was sent from Athens to Sparta to complain of the acts of Sphodrias;
but on the arrival of the ambassadors at Sparta they found that the
government there were in no need of encouragement from without to
proceed against Sphodrias, for they had already summoned him home to
be tried for his life. Sphodrias durst not venture to return to
Sparta, for he saw that his fellow-countrymen were angry with him and
ashamed of his conduct towards the Athenians, and that they wished
rather to be thought fellow-sufferers by his crime than accomplices in

XXV. Sphodrias had a son, named Kleonymus, who was still quite a
youth, and who was beloved by Archidamus, the son of Agesilaus. He now
assisted this youth, who was pleading his father's cause as best he
might, but he could not do so openly, because Sphodrias belonged to
the party which was opposed to Agesilaus. When, however, Kleonymus
came to him, and besought him with tears and piteous entreaties to
appease Agesilaus, because the party of Sphodrias dreaded him more
than any one else, the young man, after two or three days' hesitation,
at length, as the day fixed for the trial approached, mustered up
courage to speak to his father on the subject, telling him that
Kleonymus had begged him to intercede for his father.

Agesilaus was well aware of his son's intimacy with Kleonymus, which
he had never discouraged; for Kleonymus promised to become as
distinguished a man as any in Sparta. He did not on this occasion,
however, hold out to his son any hopes of a satisfactory termination
of the affair, but said that he would consider what would be the most
fitting and honourable course to pursue. After this reply, Archidamus
had not the heart to meet Kleonymus, although he had before been
accustomed to see him several times daily. This conduct of his plunged
the friends of Sphodrias into yet deeper despair of his cause, until
Etymokles, one of the friends of Agesilaus, in a conference with them,
explained that what Agesilaus really thought about the matter was,
that the action itself deserved the greatest censure; but yet that
Sphodrias was a brave energetic man, whom Sparta could not afford to

Agesilaus used this language out of a desire to gratify his son, and
from it Kleonymus soon perceived that Archidamus had been true to him
in using his interest with his father; while the friends of Sphodrias
became much more forward in his defence. Indeed Agesilaus was
remarkably fond of children, and an anecdote is related of him, that
when his children were very little he was fond of playing with them,
and would bestride a reed as if it were a horse for their amusement.
When one of his friends found him at this sport, he bade him mention
it to no one before he himself became the father of a family.

XXVI. Sphodrias was acquitted by the court; and the Athenians, as soon
as they learned this, prepared for war. Agesilaus was now greatly
blamed, and was charged with having obstructed the course of justice,
and having made Sparta responsible for an outrage upon a friendly
Greek state, merely in order to gratify the childish caprice of his
son. As he perceived that Kleombrotus was unwilling to attack the
Thebans, he himself invaded Bœotia, disregarding the law under which
on a former occasion he had pleaded exemption from military service on
account of his age. Here he fought the Thebans with varying success;
for once, when he was being borne out of action wounded, Antalkidas
observed to him, "A fine return you are getting from the Thebans for
having taught them how to fight against their will." Indeed, the
military power of the Thebans at that time was at its height, having
as it were been exercised and practised by the many campaigns
undertaken against them by the Lacedæmonians. This was why Lykurgus of
old, in his three celebrated _rhetras_, forbade the Lacedæmonians to
fight often with the same people, lest by constant practice they
should teach them how to fight. Agesilaus was also disliked by the
allies of the Lacedæmonians, because of his hatred of Thebes and his
desire to destroy that state, not on any public grounds, but merely on
account of his own bitter personal dislike to the Thebans. The allies
complained grievously that they, who composed the greater part of the
Lacedæmonium force, should every year be led hither and thither, and
exposed to great risks and dangers, merely to satisfy one man's
personal pique. Hereupon we are told that Agesilaus, desiring to prove
that this argument about their composing so large a part of the army
was not founded on fact, made use of the following device:--He ordered
all the allies to sit down in one body, and made the Lacedæmonians sit
down separately. Next he gave orders, first that all the potters
should stand up; and when they had risen, he ordered the smiths,
carpenters, masons, and all the other tradesmen successively to do so.
When then nearly all the allies had risen to their feet, the Spartans
all remained seated, for they were forbidden to learn or to practise
any mechanical art. At this Agesilaus smiled, and said, "You see, my
men, how many more soldiers we send out than you do."

XXVII. On his return from his campaign against the Thebans, Agesilaus,
while passing through Megara, was seized with violent pain in his
sound leg, just as he was entering the town-hall in the Acropolis of
that city. After this it became greatly swelled and full of blood, and
seemed to be dangerously inflamed. A Syracusan physician opened a vein
near the ankle, which relieved the pain, but the flow of blood was
excessive, and could not be checked, so that he fainted away from
weakness, and was in a very dangerous condition. At length the
bleeding stopped, and he was conveyed home to Lacedæmon, but he
remained ill, and unable to serve in the wars for a long time.

During his illness many disasters befel the Spartans both by land and
by sea. Of these, the most important was the defeat at Tegyra, where
for the first time they wore beaten in a fair fight by the Thebans.
The Lacedæmonians were now eager to make peace with all the Greek
cities, and ambassadors from all parts of Greece met at Sparta to
arrange terms. Among them was Epameinondas, a man who was renowned for
his culture and learning, but who had not hitherto given any proof of
his great military genius. This man, perceiving that all the other
ambassadors were sedulously paying their court to Agesilaus, assumed
an independent attitude, and in a speech delivered before the congress
declared that nothing kept the war alive except the unjust pretensions
of Sparta, who gained strength from the sufferings of the other
states, and that no peace could be durable unless such pretensions
were laid aside, and Sparta reduced to the equality with the rest of
the cities of Greece.

XXVIII. Agesilaus, observing that all the representatives of the Greek
states were filled with admiration at this language, and manifested
strong sympathy with the speaker, enquired whether he thought it right
and just that the cities of Bœotia[188] should be left independent.

Epameinondas quickly and boldly enquired in answer, whether he
thought it right to leave each of the towns in Laconia independent. At
this Agesilaus leaped to his feet in a rage, and asked him to state
clearly whether he meant to leave Bœotia independent. As Epameinondas
in reply merely repeated his question, as to whether Agesilaus meant
to leave Laconia independent, Agesilaus became furious, eagerly seized
the opportunity to strike the name of Thebes out of the roll of cities
with whom peace was being made, and declared war against it. He
ratified a treaty of peace with the other Greek cities, and bade their
representatives begone, with the remark, that such of their disputes
as admitted of settlement must be arranged by peaceful negotiation,
and such as could not must be decided by war; but that it was too much
trouble for him to act as arbitrator between them in their manifold
quarrels and disagreements.

Kleombrotus, the other Spartan king, was at this time in the Phokian
territory at the head of an army. The Ephors now at once sent orders
to him to cross the Theban frontier, while they assembled a force from
all the allied cities, who were most reluctant to serve, and objected
strongly to the war, yet dared not express their discontent or disobey
the Lacedæmonians. Many sinister omens were observed, which we have
spoken of in the life of Epameinondas, and Prothous the Laconian
openly opposed the whole campaign; yet Agesilaus would not desist, but
urged on the war against Thebes, imagining that now, when all the
other states were standing aloof, and Thebes was entirely isolated, he
had a more favourable opportunity than might ever occur again for
destroying that city. The dates of this war seem to prove that it was
begun more out of ill-temper than as a consequent of any definite
plan; for the peace was ratified in Lacedæmon with the other cities on
the fourteenth of the month Skirophorion; and on the fifth of the next
month, Hekatombæon, only twenty days afterwards, the Spartans were
defeated at Leuktra. A thousand Lacedæmonians perished, among them
Kleombrotus the king, and with him the flower of the best families in
Sparta. There fell also the handsome son of Sphodrias, Kleonymus, who
fought before the king, and was thrice struck to the ground and rose
again before he was slain by the Thebans.

XXIX. In spite of the unparalleled disaster which had befallen the
Lacedæmonians, for the Theban victory was the most complete ever won
by one Greek state over another, the courage of the vanquished is
nevertheless as much to be admired as that of the victors. Xenophon
remarks that the conversation of good and brave men, even when jesting
or sitting at table, is always worth remembering, and it is much more
valuable to observe how nobly all really brave and worthy men bear
themselves when in sorrow and misfortune. When the news of the defeat
at Leuktra arrived at Sparta, the city was celebrating the festival of
the Gymnopædia, and the chorus of grown men was going through its
usual solemnity in the theatre. The Ephors, although the news clearly
proved that all was lost and the state utterly ruined, yet would not
permit the chorus to abridge its performance, and forbade the city to
throw off its festal appearance. They privately communicated the names
of the slain to their relatives, but they themselves calmly continued
to preside over the contest of the choruses in the theatre, and
brought the festival to a close as though nothing unusual had
occurred. Next morning, when all men knew who had fallen and who had
survived, one might see those whose relations had been slain, walking
about in public with bright and cheerful countenances: but of those
whose relatives survived, scarce one showed himself in public, but
they sat at home with the women, as if mourning for the dead; or if
any one of them was forced to come forth, he looked mournful and
humbled, and walked with cast-down eyes. Yet more admirable was the
conduct of the women, for one might see mothers receiving their sons
who had survived the battle with silence and sorrow, while those whose
children had fallen proceeded to the temples to return thanks to the
gods, and walked about the city with a proud and cheerful demeanour.

XXX. Yet, when their allies deserted them, and when the victorious
Epameinondas, excited by his success, was expected to invade
Peloponnesus, many Spartans remembered the oracle about the lameness
of Agesilaus, and were greatly disheartened and cast down, fearing
that they had incurred the anger of Heaven, and that the misfortunes
of the city were due to their own conduct in having excluded the sound
man from the throne, and chosen the lame one; the very thing which the
oracle had bidden them beware of doing. Nevertheless, Agesilaus was so
powerful in the state, and so renowned for wisdom and courage, that
they gladly made use of him as their leader in the war, and also
employed him to settle a certain constitutional difficulty which arose
about the political rights of the survivors of the battle. They were
unwilling to disfranchise all these men, who were so numerous and
powerful, because they feared that if so they would raise a revolution
in the city. For the usual rule at Sparta about those who survive a
defeat is, that they are incapable of holding any office in the state;
nor will any one give them his daughter in marriage; but all who meet
them strike them, and treat them with contempt. They hang about the
city in a squalid and degraded condition, wearing a cloak patched with
pieces of a different colour, and they shave one half of their beards,
and let the other half grow. Now, at the present crisis it was thought
that to reduce so many citizens to this condition, especially when the
state sorely required soldiers, would be an absurd proceeding; and
consequently, Agesilaus was appointed lawgiver, to decide upon what
was to be done. He neither altered the laws, nor proposed any new
ones, but laid down his office of lawgiver at once, with the remark,
that the laws must be allowed to sleep for that one day, and
afterwards resume their force. By this means he both preserved the
laws, retained the services of the citizens for the state, and saved
them from infamy. With the intention of cheering up the young men, and
enabling them to shake off their excessive despondency, he led an army
into Arcadia. He was careful to avoid a battle, but captured a small
fort belonging to the people of Mantinea, and overran their territory;
thus greatly raising the spirits of the Spartans, who began to pluck
up courage, and regard their city as not altogether ruined.

XXXI. After this, Epameinondas invaded Laconia with the army of the
Thebans and their allies, amounting in all to no less than forty
thousand heavy-armed soldiers. Many light troops and marauders
accompanied this body, so that the whole force which entered Laconia
amounted in all to seventy thousand men. This took place not less than
six hundred years after the Dorians had settled in Lacedæmon; and
through all that time these were the first enemies which the country
had seen; for no one before this had dared to invade it. Now, however,
the Thebans ravaged the whole district with fire and sword, and no one
came out to resist them, for Agesilaus would not allow the
Lacedæmonians to fight against what Theopompus calls 'such a heady
torrent of war,' but contented himself with guarding the most
important parts of the city itself, disregarding the boastful threats
of the Thebans, who called upon him by name to come out and fight for
his country, since he was the cause of all its misfortunes, because he
had begun the war.

Agesilaus was also distracted by the disorderly and excited state of
the city itself, for the old men were in an agony of grief,
resentment, and wounded honour, while the women could not be kept
quiet, but were wrought to frenzy, by hearing the cries of the enemy,
and seeing the fires which they lighted. He also suffered much at the
thought of his own dishonour; for when he had ascended the throne,
Sparta was the greatest and most powerful city in Greece, and now he
beheld her shorn of all her glories, and his favourite boast, that no
Laconian woman had ever seen the smoke of an enemy's fire rendered
signally untrue. We are told that when some Athenian was disputing
with Antalkidas about the bravery of their respective nations, and
saying, "We have often chased you away from the Kephissus," Antalkidas
answered, "Yes, but we have never had to chase you away from the
Eurotas." This is like the answer made by some Spartan of less
distinction to an Argive, who said, "Many of you Spartans lie buried
in Argive soil," to which he replied, "But none of you are buried in

XXXII. We are told at this time Antalkidas was one of the Ephors, and
became so much alarmed that he sent his family away to the island of
Kythera. Agesilaus, when the enemy attempted to cross the river and
force their way into the city, abandoned most part of it, and drew up
his forces on the high hills in the centre. At that time the river
Eurotas was in high flood, as much snow had fallen, and the excessive
cold of the water, as well as the strength of the stream, rendered it
hard for the Thebans to cross. Epameinondas marched first, in the
front rank of the phalanx; and some of those who were present pointed
him out to Agesilaus, who is said to have gazed long at him, saying
merely, "O thou man of great deeds."

Epameinondas was eager to assault the city itself, and to place a
trophy of victory in its streets; but as he could not draw Agesilaus
into a battle, he drew off his forces, and again laid waste the
country. Meanwhile, in Lacedæmon itself, a body of two hundred men, of
doubtful fidelity, seized the Issorium, where the temple of Artemis
stands, which is a strong and easily defensible post. The
Lacedæmonians at once wished to attack them, but Agesilaus, fearing
that some deep-laid conspiracy might break out, ordered them to remain
quiet. He himself, dressed simply in his cloak, unarmed, and attended
only by one slave, went up to the two hundred, and, in a loud voice,
told them that they had mistaken their orders; that they had not been
ordered to go thither, nor yet to go all together in a body, but that
some were to be posted _there_, pointing to some other place, and the
rest elsewhere in the city. They, hearing his commands, were
delighted, imagining that their treason was undiscovered, and
immediately marched to the places which he indicated. Agesilaus at
once occupied the Issorium with troops which he could trust, and in
the ensuing night seized and put to death fifteen of the leaders of
the two hundred. Another more important conspiracy was betrayed to
him, whose members, full Spartan citizens, were met together in one
house to arrange revolutionary schemes. At such a crisis it was
equally impossible to bring these men to a regular trial, and to allow
them to carry on their intrigues. Agesilaus therefore, after taking
the Ephors into his confidence, put them all to death untried, though
before that time no Spartan had ever been executed without a trial.

As many of the Periœki and helots who had been entrusted with arms
escaped out of the city and deserted to the enemy, which greatly
disheartened the Spartans, he ordered his servants to visit the
quarters of these soldiers at daybreak every morning, and wherever any
one was gone, to hide his arms, so that the number of deserters might
not be known.

We are told by some historians that the Thebans left Laconia because
the weather became stormy, and their Arcadian allies began to melt
away from them. Others say that they spent three entire months in the
country, and laid nearly all of it waste. Theopompus relates that when
the Bœotarchs had decided to leave the country, Phrixus, a Spartan,
came from Agesilaus and offered them ten talents to be gone, thus
paying them for doing what they had long before determined to do of
their own accord.

XXXIII. I cannot tell, however, how it was that Theopompus discovered
this fact, and that no other historian mentions it. All writers agree,
nevertheless, in declaring that at this crisis Sparta was saved by
Agesilaus, who proved himself superior to party-spirit and desire of
personal distinction, and steadily refused to risk an engagement. Yet
he never was able to restore the city to the glorious and powerful
condition which it had previously held, for Sparta, like an athlete
who has been carefully trained throughout his life, suddenly broke
down, and never recovered her former strength and prosperity. It is
very natural that this should have happened, for the Spartan
constitution was an excellent one for promoting courage, good order,
and peace within the city itself; but when Sparta became the head of a
great empire to be maintained by the sword, which Lykurgus would have
thought a totally useless appendage to a well-governed and prosperous
city, it utterly failed.

Agesilaus was now too old for active service in the field, but his
son, Archidamus, with some Sicilian mercenary troops which had been
sent to the aid of the Spartans by the despot Dionysius, defeated the
Arcadians in what was known as the 'Tearless Battle,' where he did not
lose one of his own men, but slew many of the enemy. This battle
strikingly proved the weakness of the city, for in former times the
Spartans used to regard it as such a natural and commonplace event for
them to conquer their enemies, that they only sacrificed a cock to the
gods, while those who had won a victory never boasted of it, and those
who heard of it expressed no extravagant delight at the news. When the
Ephors heard of the battle at Mantinea, which is mentioned by
Thucydides in his history, they gave the messenger who brought the
tidings a piece of meat from the public dining-table, as a present for
his good news, and nothing more. But now, when the news of this battle
reached Sparta, and Archidamus marched triumphantly into the town, all
their accustomed reserve broke down. His father was the first to meet
him, weeping for joy. After him came the senate, and the elders and
women flocked down to the river side, holding up their hands to heaven
and giving thanks to the gods for having put away the undeserved
reproach of Sparta, and having once more allowed her to raise her
head. It is said, indeed, that the Spartans before this battle were so
much ashamed of themselves, that they dared not even look their wives
in the face.

XXXIV. The independence of Messenia had been restored by Epameinondas,
and its former citizens collected together from all quarters of
Greece. The Lacedæmonians dared not openly attack these men, but they
felt angry with Agesilaus, because during his reign they had lost so
fine a country, as large as Laconia itself, and as fertile as any part
of Greece, after having enjoyed the possession of it for so many
years. For this reason Agesilaus refused to accept the terms of peace
offered by the Thebans. He was so unwilling to give up his nominal
claim to Messenia, although he had practically lost that country, that
instead of recovering it he very nearly lost Sparta as well, as he was
out-manœuvred by Epameinondas. This happened in the following manner.
The people of Mantinea revolted from the Thebans, and solicited aid
from the Lacedæmonians. When Epameinondas heard that Agesilaus was
marching thither at the head of an army, he eluded the Mantineans by a
night march from Tegea, invaded the Lacedæmonium territory, and very
nearly succeeded in avoiding the army of Agesilaus and catching Sparta
defenceless. However, Euthynus of Thespiæ, according to Kallisthenes,
or, according to Xenophon, a certain Cretan warned Agesilaus of his
danger, upon which he at once sent a mounted messenger to the city
with the news, and shortly afterwards marched thither himself. Soon
the Thebans appeared, crossed the Eurotas, and assaulted the city with
great fury, while Agesilaus, old as he was, defended it with all the
spirit and energy of youth. He did not, as on the former occasion,
consider that caution would be of any service, but perceived that
reckless daring alone could save Sparta. And by incredible daring he
did then snatch the city from the grasp of Epameinondas, and set up a
trophy of victory, having afforded to the women and children the
glorious spectacle of the men of Lacedæmon doing their duty on behalf
of the country which reared them. There, too, might Archidamus be seen
in the thick of the fight, displaying the courage of a man, and the
swiftness of a youth, as he ran to each point where the Spartans
seemed likely to give way, and everywhere with a few followers
resisted a multitude of the enemy. I think, however, that Isidas, the
son of Phœbidas, must have been most admired both by his own
countrymen and even by the enemy. He was remarkably tall and handsome,
and was just of the age when boyhood merges into manhood. Naked,
without either clothes or armour, having just been anointing himself
at home, he rushed out of his house, with a sword in one hand and a
spear in the other, ran through the front ranks, and plunged among the
enemy, striking down all who opposed him. He received not a single
wound, either because the gods admired his bravery and protected him,
or else because he appeared to his foes to be something more than man.
After this exploit we are told that the Ephors crowned him for his
bravery, and fined him a thousand drachmas for having fought without
his shield.

XXXV. A few days afterwards was fought the battle of Mantinea, where,
just as Epameinondas was carrying all before him and urging his troops
to pursue, Antikrates the Lacedæmonium met him and wounded him,
according to Dioskorides with a spear, while the Lacedæmonians to this
day call the descendants of Antikrates Machairones, that is, children
of the sword, as though he struck him with a sword. Indeed, they
regarded Antikrates with such a love and admiration, because of the
terror which Epameinondas had struck into their hearts while he was
alive, that they decreed especial honours and presents to be bestowed
upon him, and granted to his descendants an immunity from taxes and
public burdens which is enjoyed at the present day by Kallikrates, one
of the descendants of Antikrates.

After this battle and the death of Epameinondas the Greek states made
peace between one another. When, however, all the other states were
swearing to observe the peace, Agesilaus objected to the Messenians,
men, he said, without a city, swearing any such oath. The rest,
however, raised no objections to the oath of the Messenians, and the
Lacedæmonians upon this refused to take any part in the proceedings,
so that they alone remained at war, because they hoped to recover the
territory of Messenia. Agesilaus was thought an obstinate and headlong
man, and insatiable of war, because he took such pains to undermine
the general peace, and to keep Sparta at war at a time when he was in
such distress for money to carry it on, that he was obliged to borrow
from his personal friends and to get up subscriptions among the
citizens, and when he had much better have allowed the state some
repose and watched for a suitable opportunity to regain the country;
instead of which, although he had lost so great an empire by sea and
land, he yet insisted on continuing his frantic and fruitless efforts
to reconquer the paltry territory of Messenia.

XXXVI. He still further tarnished his glory by taking service under
the Egyptian Tachos. It was thought unworthy of a man who had proved
himself the bravest and best soldier in Greece, and who had filled all
the inhabited world with his fame, to hire himself out to a barbarian
rebel, and make a profit of his great name and military reputation,
just like any vulgar captain of mercenaries. If, when more than eighty
years old, and almost crippled by honourable wounds, he had again
placed himself at the head of a glorious crusade against the Persian
on behalf of the liberties of Greece, all men would have admired his
spirit, but even then would not entirely have approved of the
undertaking; for to make an action noble, time and place must be
fitting, since it is this alone that decides whether an action be good
or bad. Agesilaus, however, cared nothing for his reputation, and
considered that no service undertaken for the good of his country
would be dishonourable or unworthy of him, but thought it much more
unworthy and dishonourable to sit uselessly waiting for death at home.
He raised a body of mercenary troops with the money furnished by
Tachos, and set sail, accompanied, as in his former expedition, by
thirty Spartan counsellors.

When he landed in Egypt, the chief generals and ministers of King
Tachos at once came to pay their court to him. The other Egyptians
also eagerly crowded to see Agesilaus, of whom they had heard so much.
When, however, they saw only a little deformed old man, in mean
attire, sitting on the grass, they began to ridicule him, and
contemptuously to allude to the proverb of the mountain in labour,
which brought forth a mouse. They were even more astonished when, of
the presents offered to him, he accepted flour, calves, and geese, but
refused to receive dried fruits, pastry, and perfumes. When greatly
pressed to accept of these things, he ordered them to be given to the
helots. Yet we are told by Theophrastes that he was much pleased with
the flowering papyrus, of which garlands are made, because of its neat
and clean appearance, and he begged for and received some of this
plant from the king when he left Egypt.

XXXVII. When he joined Tachos, who was engaged in preparing his forces
for a campaign, he was disappointed in not receiving the chief
command, but being merely appointed to lead the mercenary troops,
while Chabrias the Athenian was in command of the fleet, Tachos
himself acting as commander-in-chief. This was the first vexatious
circumstance which occurred to Agesilaus; and soon he began to feel
great annoyance at the vainglorious swaggering tone of the Egyptian
king, which nevertheless he was obliged to endure throughout the whole
of a naval expedition which they undertook against the Phœnicians,
during which he suppressed his feelings of disgust as well as he could
until at last he had an opportunity of showing them. Nektanebis, the
cousin of Tachos, and the commander of a large portion of his force,
revolted, and caused himself to be proclaimed King of Egypt. He at
once sent to Agesilaus begging for his assistance, and he also made
the same proposals to Chabrias, offering them great rewards if they
would join him.

Tachos, hearing of this, also began to supplicate them to stand by
him, and Chabrias besought Agesilaus to remain in the service of
Tachos, and to act as his friend. To this, however, Agesilaus
answered, "You, Chabrias, have come here on your own responsibility,
and are able to act as you please. I was given by Sparta to the
Egyptians as their general. It would not become me, therefore, to make
war against those whom I was sent to aid, unless my country orders me
to do so." After expressing himself thus, he sent messengers to
Sparta, with instructions to depreciate Tachos, and to praise
Nektanebis. Both these princes also sent embassies to the
Lacedæmonians, the one begging for aid as their old friend and ally,
the other making large promises of future good-will towards them.
After hearing both sides, the Spartans publicly answered the
Egyptians, that Agesilaus would decide between them, and they sent
him a private despatch, bidding him to do what was best for Sparta.
Hereupon Agesilaus and the mercenaries left Tachos, and joined
Nektanebis, making the interests of his country the pretext for his
extraordinary conduct, which we can hardly call anything better than
treachery. However, the Lacedæmonians regard that course as the most
honourable which is the most advantageous to their country, and know
nothing of right or wrong, but only how to make Sparta great.

XXXVIII. Tachos, deserted by the mercenaries, now fled for his life;
but another claimant of the throne arose in the district of Mendes,
and made war against Nektanebis with an army of one hundred thousand
men. Nektanebis, in his talk with Agesilaus, spoke very confidently
about this force, saying that they were indeed very numerous, but a
mere mixed multitude of rustic recruits, whom he could afford to
despise. To these remarks Agesilaus answered, "It is not their
numbers, but their ignorance which I fear, lest we should be unable to
deceive them. Stratagems in war consist in unexpectedly falling upon
men who are expecting an attack from some other quarter, but a man who
expects nothing gives his enemy no opportunity to take him unawares,
just as in wrestling one cannot throw one's adversary if he stands

The Mendesian soon began to intrigue with Agesilaus, and Nektanebis
feared much that he might succeed in detaching him from himself.
Consequently, when Agesilaus advised him to fight as soon as possible,
and not prolong the war against men who were indeed inexperienced in
battle, but who were able, from their enormous numbers, to raise vast
entrenchments and surround him on every side, he took the exactly
opposite course, and retired to a strongly fortified city, of great
extent, viewing Agesilaus with suspicion and fear. Agesilaus was
grieved at this, but, feeling ashamed to change sides a second time
and so completely fail in his mission, he followed Nektanebis into his

XXXIX. When the enemy advanced and began to build a wall round the
city, Nektanebis, fearing the consequences of a siege, was eager to
fight, as were also the Greeks, for they were very short of
provisions. Agesilaus, however, opposed this design, for which he was
heartily abused by the Egyptians, who called him a traitor and the
betrayer of their king. He paid but little attention to their
slanders, but watched for an opportunity to effect the project which
he had conceived. This was as follows:--The enemy were digging a
trench round the city, with the intention of completely isolating the
garrison and starving it out. When then the two ends of this trench,
which was to surround the city, had nearly met, Agesilaus towards
evening ordered the Greeks to get under arms, and, proceeding to
Nektanebis, said, "Young man, this is our opportunity. I would not say
anything about it before, lest the secret should be divulged. But now
the enemy themselves have secured our position by digging this
enormous trench; for the part of it which is completed will keep off
their superior numbers from us, while upon the ground which still
remains unbroken we can fight them on equal terms. Come now, prove
yourself a man of courage, charge bravely with us, and save both
yourself and your army. Those of the enemy whom we first attack will
not be able to resist our onset, and the rest will not be able to
reach us because of the trench."

Nektanebis was surprised at the ingenuity of Agesilaus, placed himself
in the midst of the Greeks, and charging with them gained an easy
victory. Having once established an ascendancy over the mind of
Nektanebis, Agesilaus now proceeded to use the same trick again with
the enemy. By alternately retreating and advancing he led them on
until he had enticed them into a place between two deep canals. Here
he at once formed his troops on a front equal to the space between the
canals, and charged the enemy, who were unable to use their numbers to
outflank and surround him. After a short resistance they fled. Many
were slain, and the rest completely dispersed.

XL. This victory secured the throne of Egypt for Nektanebis. He now
showed great esteem for Agesilaus, and begged him to remain in Egypt
during the winter. Agesilaus, however, was anxious to return home and
assist in the war which was going on there, as he knew that Sparta was
in great want of money, and was paying a force of mercenary troops.
Nektanebis escorted him out of the country with great honour, giving
him many presents, and the sum of two hundred and thirty talents of
silver to be used in meeting the expenses of the war. As it was
winter, and stormy weather, Agesilaus did not venture to cross the
open sea, but coasted along the shores of Libya, as far as a desert
spot known as the Harbour of Menelaus, where he died, in the
eighty-fourth year of his age, and having been king of Sparta for
forty-one years, during thirty of which he was the greatest and most
powerful man in Greece, having been looked upon as all but the king of
the whole country, up to the time of the battle of Leuktra.

It was the Spartan custom, in the case of citizens who died in foreign
countries, to pay them the last rites wherever they might be, but to
take home the remains of their kings. Consequently the Spartan
counsellors enveloped the body in melted wax, as they could not obtain
honey, and took it home to Lacedæmon.

Archidamus, the son of Agesilaus, succeeded him on the throne, and his
posterity continued to reign until Agis, the fifth in descent from
Agesilaus, was murdered by Leonidas, because he endeavoured to restore
the ancient discipline of Sparta.


[Footnote 174: This passage has been admirably paraphrased by Grote,
'History of Greece,' Part II. ch. lxxiii.:--

"Combined with that ability and energy in which he was never
deficient, this conciliatory policy ensured him more real power than
had ever fallen to the lot of any king of Sparta--power, not merely
over the military operations abroad, which usually fell to the kings,
but also over the policy of the state at home. On the increase and
maintenance of that real power, his chief thoughts were concentrated;
new dispositions generated by kingship, which had never shown
themselves in him before. Despising, like Lysander, both money,
luxury, and all the outward show of power, he exhibited, as a king, an
ultra-Spartan simplicity, carried almost to affectation in diet,
clothing, and general habits. But like Lysander, also, he delighted in
the exercise of dominion through the medium of knots or factions of
devoted partizans, whom he rarely scrupled to uphold in all their
career of injustice and oppression. Though an amiable man, with no
disposition to tyranny and still less to plunder, for his own
benefit--Agesilaus thus made himself the willing instrument of both,
for the benefit of his various coadjutors and friends, whose power and
consequence he identified with his own." See also infra, ch. xiii. et

[Footnote 175: We see here the beginning of that tendency of the
Neoplatonic school to find a sanction for all their theories in some
perversion of the plain meaning of Homer's words.]

[Footnote 176: Compare Life of Lysander, ch. xxiii.]

[Footnote 177: In Sintenis's text of Plutarch this prince's name is
spelt as above. Xenophon, however, in his Life of Agesilaus, spells it
Otys; and this reading has been adopted by Grote. It must be
remembered that Xenophon was probably an eye-witness of the
proceedings which he records, and that Plutarch lived several
centuries later.]

[Footnote 178: The Greek word here translated "guest" is explained by
Liddell and Scott, s.v., to mean "any person in a foreign city with
whom one has a treaty of hospitality for self and heirs, confirmed by
mutual presents and an appeal to [Greek: Zeus xenios] Ζεὺς ξένιος."]

[Footnote 179: He sought to compose the dissensions and misrule which
had arisen out of the Lysandrian Dekarchies, or governments of ten, in
the Greco-Asiatic cities, avoiding as much as possible the infliction
of death or exile.--Grote, part ii. ch. lxxiii.]

[Footnote 180: Nothing is known of this tribe. There is a city,
Tralles, in Asia Minor, which Clough conjectures may possibly have
been connected with them. Liddell and Scott speak of "Trallians" as
"Thracian barbarians employed in Asia as mercenaries, torturers, and

[Footnote 181: The people living about Pharsalia.]

[Footnote 182: Mora, a Spartan regiment of infantry. The number of men
in each varied from 400 to 900, according as the men above 45, 50,
&c., years were called out.]

[Footnote 183: The most aristocratic city in Bœotia, now allied with
the Spartans. During the Theban supremacy it was utterly destroyed.]

[Footnote 184: That is, the aristocratic or pro-Laconian party, who
had been driven out by the other side.]

[Footnote 185: To Medise was a phrase originally used during the great
Persian invasion of Greece under Xerxes, B.C. 480, when those Greek
cities who sided with the Persians, were said to Medise, that is, to
take the side of the Medes. See Life of Artaxerxes, vol. iv. ch. 22,
and Grote's 'History of Greece,' part ii. ch. lxxvi.]

[Footnote 186: See _ante_, ch. xiii., _note_.]

[Footnote 187: This name is spelt Leontiades by most writers.]

[Footnote 188: I extract the following note from Grote's 'History of
Greece.' "Plutarch gives this interchange of brief questions, between
Agesilaus and Epameinondas, which is in substance the same as that
given by Pausanias, and has every appearance of being true. But he
introduces it in a very bold and abrupt way, such as cannot be
conformable to the reality. To raise a question about the right of
Sparta to govern Laconia was a most daring novelty. A courageous and
patriotic Theban might venture upon it as a retort against those
Spartans who questioned the right of Thebes to her presidency of
Bœotia; but he would never do so without assigning his reasons to
justify an assertion so startling to a large portion of his hearers.
The reasons which I here ascribe to Epameinondas are such as we know
to have formed the Theban creed, in reference to the Bœotian cities;
such as were actually urged by the Theban orator in 427 B.C., when the
fate of the Platæan captives was under discussion. After Epameinondas
had once laid out the reasons in support of his assertion, he might
then, if the same brief question were angrily put to him a second
time, meet it with another equally brief counter-question or retort.
It is this final interchange of thrusts which Plutarch has given,
omitting the arguments previously stated by Epameinondas, and
necessary to warrant the seeming paradox which he advances. We must
recollect that Epameinondas does not contend that Thebes was entitled
to _as much power_ in Bœotia as Sparta in Laconia. He only contends
that Bœotia, under the presidency of Thebes, was as much an integral
political aggregate, as Laconia under Sparta--in reference to the
Grecian world."--Grote's 'History of Greece,' part ii. ch. lxvii.]


I. Towards Pompeius the Roman people seem to have been disposed from
the very first, just as the Prometheus of Aeschylus[189] was towards
his deliverer Hercules, when he says:--

     "Though hateful is the sire, most dear to me the son."

For neither did the Romans ever display hatred so violent and savage
towards any commander as towards Strabo[190] the father of Pompeius,
whom they dreaded, when he was alive, for his military talent, for he
was a man most expert in arms; and when he was killed by lightning and
his body was carried out to interment they pulled it from the bier on
which it was lying and treated it with indignity: nor, on the other
hand, did any other Roman besides Pompeius ever receive from the
people tokens of affection so strong, or so early, or which grew so
rapidly with his good fortune, or abided with him so firmly in his
reverses. The cause of their hatred to the father was his insatiable
avarice: the causes of their affection to the son were many; his
temperate life, his practice in arms, the persuasiveness of his
speech, the integrity of his character, and his affability to every
man who came in his way, so that there was no man from whom another
could ask a favour with so little pain, and no man whose requests
another would more willingly labour to satisfy. For in addition to his
other endearing qualities, Pompeius could give without seeming to
confer a favour, and he could receive with dignity.

II. At the beginning also his countenance contributed in no small
degree to win the good-will of the people and to secure a favourable
reception before he opened his mouth. For the sweetness of his
expression was mingled with dignity and kindness, and while he was yet
in the very bloom of youth his noble and kingly nature clearly showed
itself. There was also a slight falling back of the hair and softness
in the expression of his eyes, which produced a resemblance to the
likenesses of Alexander, though indeed the resemblance was more talked
of than real. Accordingly many at first gave him the name, which
Pompeius did not object to, whence some in derision called him
Alexander. It was in allusion to this that Lucius Philippus,[191] a
consular man, when he was speaking in favour of Pompeius, said it was
nothing strange if he who was Philippus loved Alexander. They used to
report that Flora the courtesan, when she was now advanced in years,
always spoke with pleasure of her intimacy with Pompeius, and said
that she could never leave the embrace of Pompeius without bearing
marks[192] of the ardour of his passion. Besides this, Flora used to
tell that Geminius, one of the companions of Pompeius, conceived a
passion for her, and plagued her much with his solicitations, and when
she said that for the sake of Pompeius she could not consent, Geminius
applied to Pompeius. Now Pompeius, as she told the story, gave
Geminius permission, but he never after touched Flora or had a meeting
with her, though it was believed that he was attached to her; and
Flora did not take this as most courtesans do, but was ill for a long
time through grief and regret for the loss of her lover. And indeed it
is said that Flora enjoyed such reputation and was so much talked of,
that Cæcilius Metellus, when he was ornamenting the temple of the
Dioscuri with statues and paintings, had the portrait of Flora painted
and placed in the temple on account of her beauty. The wife of his
freedman Demetrius also, who had the greatest influence with Pompeius
and left a property of four thousand talents, contrary to his habit he
did not treat kindly nor in a manner befitting her free condition: but
it was through fear of her beauty, which was irresistible and much
talked about, and that he might not appear to be captivated by her.
Though he was so exceedingly cautious in such matters and so much on
his guard, yet he did not escape the imputations of his enemies on the
ground of amours, but he was slanderously accused of commerce with
married women and of betraying many of the public interests to gratify
them. Of his temperance and simplicity in his way of living the
following anecdote is told. On one occasion when he was ill and
indisposed to his ordinary food, the physician prescribed a thrush for
him. After search had been made and none found, for the season was
past, some one observed that one might be found at the house of
Lucullus, for he kept them all the year round: "Well then," said
Pompeius, "I suppose if Lucullus were not luxurious, Pompeius could
not live;" and without regarding the physician's advice he took
something that was ready at hand. This, however, belongs to a later

III. When he was still quite a youth and was serving under his father,
who was opposed to Cinna, he had one Lucius Terentius[193] for his
companion and tent-mate. This Lucius being bribed by Cinna, designed
to kill Pompeius, and others were to fire the general's tent.
Information of this came to Pompeius while he was at supper, at which,
nothing disturbed, he went on drinking more gaily, and showing great
signs of affection towards Terentius; but when they were turning in to
rest he slipped unobserved from under the tent, and after placing a
guard about his father, kept quiet. When Terentius thought the time
was come, drawing his sword he got up, and approaching the bed of
Pompeius, he struck many blows upon the bed-covering, supposing that
Pompeius was lying there. Upon this there was a great commotion owing
to the soldiers' hatred of their general, and there was a movement
made towards mutiny by the men beginning to pull down the tents and
take their arms. The general, fearing the tumult, did not come near;
but Pompeius, going about in the midst of the soldiers, implored them
with tears in his eyes, and finally throwing himself on his face
before the gate of the camp right in their way, he lay there weeping,
and told those who were going out to trample on him, so that every man
drew back for very shame, and thus the whole army, with the exception
of eight hundred men, changed their design and were reconciled to
their commander.

IV. Upon the death of Strabo, Pompeius had to defend a prosecution in
respect of a charge of peculation against his father. He detected one
of his freedmen in having appropriated most of the property, and
proved it to the magistrates; but he was himself accused of having in
his possession hunting nets and books which were taken among the
plunder at Asculum.[194] He received these things from his father when
he took Asculum, but he lost them after his return to Rome, when the
guards of Cinna broke into his house and plundered it. He had many
preliminary contests with the accuser before the trial commenced, in
which, by showing himself to possess an acuteness and firmness above
his years, he got great reputation and popularity, so that
Antistius,[195] who was prætor and presided at that trial, conceived a
great affection for Pompeius, and offered him his daughter to wife,
and spoke about it to his friends. Pompeius accepted the proposal, and
an agreement was secretly made between them; but yet the matter did
not fail to be generally known by reason of the partizanship of
Antistius. When at last Antistius declared the votes of the judices to
be for his acquittal, the people, as if a signal had been concerted,
called out the name Talasius,[196] which, pursuant to an old custom,
they are used to utter on the occasion of a marriage. This ancient
custom, they say, had the following origin: When the daughters of the
Sabines had come to Rome to see the games, and the noblest among the
Romans were carrying them off to be their wives, some goatherds and
herdsmen of mean condition took upon their shoulders a tall handsome
maid and were carrying her off. In order, however, that none of the
better sort who might fall in with them should attempt to take the
maid from them, they called out as they ran along that she was for
Talasius (now Talasius was a man of rank and much beloved), so that
those who heard the cry clapped their hands and shouted as being
pleased at what the men were doing and commending them for it. From
this time forth, as the story goes, inasmuch as the marriage of
Talasius turned out to be a happy one, it is usual to utter the same
expression by way of merriment at the occasion of a marriage. This is
the most probable story among those which are told about the name
Talasius. However, a few days after the trial Pompeius married

V. Having gone to Cinna[197] to the camp, Pompeius became alarmed in
consequence of some charge and false accusation, and he quickly stole
out of the way. On his disappearing, a rumour went through the camp
and a report that Cinna had murdered the young man, whereupon the
soldiers, who had long been weary of him and hated their general, made
an assault upon him. Cinna attempted to escape, but he was overtaken
by a centurion, who pursued him with his naked sword. Cinna fell down
at the knees of the centurion, and offered him his seal ring, which
was of great price; but the centurion with great contempt replied: "I
am not going to seal a contract, but to punish an abominable and
unjust tyrant," and so killed him. Cinna thus perished, but he was
succeeded in the direction of affairs by Carbo, a still more furious
tyrant than himself, who kept the power in his hands till Sulla
advanced against him, to the great joy of the most part, who in their
present sufferings thought even a change of masters no small profit.
To such a condition had calamities brought the state, that men
despairing of freedom sought a more moderate slavery.

VI. Now about this time Pompeius was tarrying in Picenum in Italy, for
he had estates[198] there, but mainly because he liked the cities,
which were well disposed and friendly towards him by reason of their
ancient connection with his father. Seeing that the most distinguished
and chief of the citizens were leaving their property and flocking
from all sides to Sulla's camp as to a harbour of refuge, Pompeius did
not think it becoming in him to steal away to Sulla like a fugitive,
nor without bringing some contribution, nor yet as if he wanted help,
but he thought that he should begin by doing Sulla some service and so
approach with credit and a force. Accordingly he attempted to rouse
the people of Picenum, who readily listened to his proposals, and paid
no attention to those who came from Carbo. A certain Vindius having
remarked that Pompeius had just quitted school to start up among them
as a popular leader, the people were so infuriated that they
forthwith fell on Vindius and killed him. Upon this Pompeius, who was
now three and twenty years of age, without being appointed general by
any one, but himself assuming the command in Auximum,[199] a large
city, placing a tribunal in the forum and by edict ordering two
brothers Ventidii who were among the chief persons in the place and
were opposing him on behalf of Carbo, to quit the city, began to
enlist soldiers, and to appoint centurions and officers over them, and
he went to all the surrounding cities and did the same. All who were
of Carbo's party got up and quitted the cities, but the rest gladly
put themselves in the hands of Pompeius, who thus in a short time
raised three complete legions, and having supplied himself with
provisions and beasts of burden and waggons and everything else that
an army requires, advanced towards Sulla, neither hurrying nor yet
content with passing along unobserved, but lingering by the way to
harass the enemy, and endeavouring to detach from Carbo every part of
Italy that he visited.

VII. Now there rose up against him three hostile generals at once,
Carinna,[200] and Clœlius and Brutus, not all in front, nor yet all
from the same quarter, but they surrounded him with three armies, with
the view of completely destroying him. Pompeius was not alarmed, but
getting all his force together he attacked one of the armies, that of
Brutus, placing in the front his cavalry, among whom he himself was.
From the side of the enemy the Celtæ rode out to meet him, when
Pompeius with spear in hand struck the first and strongest of them and
brought him down; on which the rest fled and put the infantry also
into confusion, so that there was a general rout. Hereupon the
generals quarrelled among themselves and retired, as each best could,
and the cities took the part of Pompeius, seeing that the enemy had
dispersed in alarm. Next came Scipio[201] the consul against him, but
before the lines had come close enough to discharge their javelins,
the soldiers of Scipio saluted those of Pompeius and changed sides,
and Scipio made his escape. Finally, near the river Arsis,[202] Carbo
himself attacked Pompeius with several troops of horse, but Pompeius
bravely stood the attack, and putting them to flight pursued and drove
all of them upon difficult ground where no cavalry could act; and the
men, seeing that there was no hope of saving themselves, surrendered
with their arms and horses.

VIII. Sulla had not yet received intelligence of these events, but
upon the first news and reports about Pompeius, being alarmed at his
being among so many hostile generals of such reputation, he made haste
to relieve him. Pompeius being informed that Sulla was near, ordered
his officers to arm the forces and to display them in such manner that
they might make the most gallant and splendid appearance to the
Imperator, for he expected to receive great honours from him; and he
got more than he expected. For when Sulla saw him approaching and his
army standing by, admirable for the brave appearance of the men and
elated and rejoicing in their success, he leapt down from his horse,
and being addressed, according to custom, by the title of Imperator,
he addressed Pompeius in return by the title of Imperator, though
nobody would have expected that Sulla would give to a young man who
was not yet a member of the Senate, the title for which he was
fighting against the Scipios and the Marii. And indeed everything else
was in accordance with the first greeting, for Sulla used to rise from
his seat as Pompeius approached and take his vest from his head, which
he was not observed to do generally to any other person, though there
were many distinguished men about him. Pompeius, however, was not made
vain by these marks of distinction, but on being immediately sent into
Gaul by Sulla, where Metellus[203] commanded and appeared to be doing
nothing correspondent to his means, Pompeius said it was not right to
take the command from a man who was his senior and superior in
reputation; however he said he was ready to carry on the war in
conjunction with Metellus, if he had no objection, in obedience to his
orders and to give him his assistance. Metellus accepted the proposal
and wrote to him to come, on which Pompeius entering Gaul, performed
noble exploits, and he also fanned into a flame again and warmed the
warlike and courageous temper of Metellus, which was now near becoming
extinct through old age, as the liquid, heated stream of copper by
flowing about the hard, cold metal is said to soften and to liquefy it
into its own mass better than the fire. But as in the case of an
athlete[204] who has obtained the first place among men and has
gloriously vanquished in every contest, his boyish victories are made
of no account and are not registered; so the deeds which Pompeius then
accomplished, though of themselves extraordinary, yet as they were
buried under the number and magnitude of his subsequent struggles and
wars, I have been afraid to disturb them, lest if we should dwell too
long on his first exploits, we should miss the acts and events which
are the most important and best show the character of the man.

IX.[205] Now when Sulla was master of Italy and was proclaimed
Dictator, he rewarded the other officers and generals by making them
rich and promoting them to magistracies and by granting them without
stint and with readiness what they asked for. But as he admired
Pompeius for his superior merit and thought that he would be a great
support to his own interests, he was anxious in some way to attach him
by family relations. Metella, the wife of Sulla, had also the same
wish, and they persuaded Pompeius to put away Antistia and to take to
wife Aemilia, the step-daughter of Sulla, the child of Metella by
Scaurus, who was then living with her husband and was pregnant. This
matter of the marriage was of a tyrannical character, and more suited
to the interests of Sulla than conformable to the character of
Pompeius, for Aemilia, who was pregnant, was taken from another to be
married to him, and Antistia was put away with dishonour and under
lamentable circumstances, inasmuch as she had just lost her father
also, and that, too, on her husband's account; for Antistius was
murdered in the Senate-house because he was considered to be an
adherent of Sulla for the sake of Pompeius; and the mother of Antistia
having witnessed all this put an end to her life, so that this
misfortune was added to the tragedy of the marriage; and in sooth
another besides, for Aemilia herself died immediately afterwards in
child-birth in the house of Pompeius.

X. After this, news arrived that Perpenna[206] was securing Sicily for
himself, and that the island was supplying to those who remained of
the opposite faction a point for concentrating their forces; for
Carbo[207] was afloat in those parts with a navy, and Domitius had
fallen upon Libya, and many other fugitives of note were crowding
there, who had escaped from the proscriptions. Against these Pompeius
was sent with a large force: and Perpenna immediately evacuated Sicily
upon his arrival. Pompeius relieved the cities which had been harshly
treated, and behaved kindly to them all except to the Mamertini in
Messene. For when the Mamertini protested against the tribunal and the
Roman administration of justice, on the ground that there was an old
Roman enactment which forbade their introduction, "Won't you stop,"
said he, "citing laws to us who have our swords by our sides?" It was
considered also that Pompeius triumphed over the misfortunes of Carbo
in an inhuman manner. For if it was necessary to put Carbo to death,
as perhaps it was, he ought to have been put to death as soon as he
was taken, and then the act might have been imputed to him who gave
the order. But Pompeius produced in chains a Roman who had three times
been Consul, and making him stand in front of the tribunal while he
was sitting, sat in judgment on him, to the annoyance and vexation of
those who were present; after which he ordered him to be removed and
put to death. They say that when Carbo had been dragged off, seeing
the sword already bared, he begged them to allow him to retire for a
short time as his bowels were disordered. Caius Oppius,[208] the
friend of Cæsar, says that Pompeius behaved inhumanly to Quintus
Valerius also; for Pompeius, who knew that Valerius was a learned man
and a particular lover of learning, embraced him, and after walking
about with him and questioning him about what he wanted to know, and
getting his answer, he ordered his attendants to take Valerius away
and immediately put him to death. But when Oppius is speaking of the
enemies or friends of Cæsar, it is necessary to be very cautious in
believing what he says. Now as to those enemies of Sulla who were of
the greatest note and were openly taken, Pompeius of necessity
punished them; but as to the rest he allowed as many as he could to
escape detection, and he even aided some in getting away. Pompeius had
determined to punish the inhabitants of Himera which had sided with
the enemy; but Sthenis the popular leader having asked for a
conference with him, told Pompeius that he would not do right, if he
let the guilty escape and punished the innocent. On Pompeius asking
who the guilty man was, Sthenis replied, it was himself, for he had
persuaded those citizens who were his friends, and forced those who
were his enemies. Pompeius admiring the bold speech and spirit of the
man pardoned him first and then all the rest. Hearing that his
soldiers were committing excesses on the march, he put a seal on their
swords, and he who broke the seal was punished.

XI. While he was thus engaged in Sicily and settling the civil
administration, he received a decree of the Senate and letters from
Sulla which contained an order for him to sail to Libya and vigorously
oppose Domitius,[209] who had got together a power much larger than
that with which Marius no long time back had passed over from Libya to
Italy and put all affairs at Rome in confusion by making himself a
tyrant after having been a fugitive. Accordingly making his
preparations with all haste Pompeius left in command in Sicily
Memmius,[210] his sister's husband, and himself set sail with a
hundred and twenty large ships, and eight hundred transports which
conveyed corn, missiles, money, and engines. On his landing with part
of his vessels at Utica and the rest at Carthage, seven thousand men
deserted from the enemy and came over to him; he had himself six
complete legions. It is said that a ludicrous thing occurred here.
Some soldiers having fallen in with a treasure, as it seems, got a
large sum of money. The matter becoming known, all the rest of the
soldiers got a notion that the place was full of money, which they
supposed to have been hid during the misfortunes of the Carthaginians.
The consequence was that Pompeius could do nothing with the soldiers
for many days while they were busy with looking after treasure, but he
went about laughing and looking on so many thousands all at one time
digging and turning up the ground, till at last the men were tired and
told their commander to lead them were he pleased, as they had been
punished enough for their folly.

XII. Domitius had posted himself to oppose Pompeius, with a ravine in
his front which was difficult to pass and rough; but a violent rain
accompanied with wind commenced in the morning and continued, so that
Domitius giving up his intention of fighting on that day ordered a
retreat. Pompeius taking advantage of this opportunity advanced
rapidly and began to cross the ravine. But the soldiers of Domitius
were in disorder and confusion, and what resistance they offered was
neither made by the whole body nor yet in any regular manner: the wind
also veered round and blew the storm right in their faces. However the
storm confused the Romans also, for they did not see one another
clearly, and Pompeius himself had a narrow escape with his life, not
being recognised by a soldier to whom he was somewhat slow in giving
the word on being asked for it. Having repulsed the enemy with great
slaughter (for it is said that out of twenty thousand only three
thousand escaped) they saluted Pompeius with the title of Imperator.
But Pompeius said that he would not accept the honour, so long as the
enemy's encampment was standing, and if they thought him worthy of
this title they must first destroy the camp, upon which they forthwith
rushed against the rampart, and Pompeius fought without a helmet for
fear of what just had happened. The camp was taken and Domitius fell.
Some of the cities immediately submitted, and others were taken by
storm. Pompeius also made a prisoner of Iarbas,[211] one of the kings,
who had sided with Domitius, and he gave his kingdom to Hiempsal.
Availing himself of his success and the strength of his army he
invaded Numidia. After advancing many days' march and subduing all
whom he met with, and firmly establishing the dread of the Romans
among the barbarians which had now somewhat subsided, he said that he
ought not to leave even the wild beasts of Libya, without letting them
have some experience of the strength and courage of the Romans.
Accordingly he spent a few days in hunting lions and elephants;[212]
and in forty days in all, as it is said, he defeated his enemies,
subdued Libya, and settled all the affairs of the kings, being then in
his four and twentieth year.

XIII. On his return to Utica he received letters from Sulla, with
orders to disband the rest of the army, and to wait there with one
legion for his successor in the command. Pompeius was annoyed at this
and took it ill, though he did not show it; but the army openly
expressed their dissatisfaction, and when Pompeius requested them to
advance, they abused Sulla, and they said they would not let Pompeius
be exposed to danger without them, and they advised him not to trust
the tyrant. At first Pompeius endeavoured to mollify and quiet them,
but finding that he could not prevail, he descended from the tribunal
and went to his tent weeping. But the soldiers laid hold of him and
again placed him on the tribunal, and a great part of the day was
spent in the soldiers urging him to stay and be their leader, and in
Pompeius entreating the soldiers to be obedient and not to mutiny,
till at last, as they still urged him and drowned his voice with their
cries, he swore he would kill himself, if they forced him; and so at
last with great difficulty they were induced to stop. Sulla at first
received intelligence that Pompeius had revolted, on which he said to
his friends, it was his fate now that he was old to fight with boys,
alluding to the fact that Marius, who was very young, gave him most
trouble, and brought him into the extremest danger; but on hearing the
true state of affairs, and perceiving that everybody with right good
will was eager to receive Pompeius and to escort him, he made haste to
outdo them. Accordingly he advanced and met Pompeius, and receiving
him with all possible expressions of good-will, he saluted him with a
loud voice by the name of Magnus,[213] and he bade those who were
present to address him in the same way. The word Magnus means Great.
Others say that it was in Libya first that the whole army with
acclamation pronounced the name, and that it obtained strength and
currency by being confirmed by Sulla. But Pompeius himself, after
everybody else, and some time later when he was sent into Iberia as
proconsul against Sertorius, began to call himself in his letters and
edicts Magnus Pompeius; for the name was no longer invidious when
people had been made familiar with it. And here one may justly admire
and respect the old Romans, who requited with such appellations and
titles not success in war and battles only, but honoured therewith
political services and merits also. Two men accordingly the people
proclaimed Maximi, which means the Greatest; Valerius,[214] because he
reconciled the senate to the people when there was a misunderstanding
between them; and Fabius Rullus,[215] because he ejected from the
senate certain rich persons the children of freedmen who had been
enrolled in the list of senators.

XIV. After this Pompeius asked for a triumph, but Sulla opposed his
claim: for the law gives a triumph to a consul or to a prætor[216]
only, but to no one else. And this is the reason why the first Scipio,
after defeating the Carthaginians in greater and more important
contests in Iberia, did not ask for a triumph, for he was not consul,
nor yet prætor. Sulla considered that if Pompeius, who was not yet
well bearded, should enter the city in triumph, he who, by reason of
his age, was not yet a member of the senate, both his own office and
the honour given to Pompeius would be exposed to much obloquy. Sulla
made these remarks to Pompeius, to show that he did not intend to let
him have a triumph, but would resist him and check his ambition, if he
would not listen to reason. Pompeius, however, was not cowed, but he
told Sulla to reflect, that more men worship the rising than the
setting sun, intending him to understand that his own power was on the
increase, but that the power of Sulla was diminishing and fading away.
Sulla did not distinctly hear these words, but observing that those
who did hear them, by looks and gestures expressed their astonishment,
he asked what it was that Pompeius had said. When he heard what it
was, he was confounded at the boldness of Pompeius, and called out
twice, "Let him triumph!" Now many persons were annoyed, and expressed
their dissatisfaction at the triumph, on which Pompeius, wishing to
annoy them still more, it is said, made preparation for entering the
city in a car drawn by four elephants,[217] for he brought from Libya
many of the king's elephants that he had taken; but as the gate was
too narrow, he gave up his project and contented himself with horses.
The soldiers, who had not obtained as much as they expected, were
ready to make a disturbance and impede the triumph, but Pompeius said
that he cared not for it, and would rather give up the triumph than
humour them; whereupon Servilius,[218] a man of distinction, who had
made most opposition to the triumph of Pompeius, said, Now he
perceived that Pompeius was really Great and was worthy of the
triumph. It is also certain that he might then have been easily
admitted into the senate, if he had chosen; but he showed no eagerness
for it, seeking, as they say, reputation from what was unusual. For it
was nothing surprising if Pompeius were a senator before the age, but
it was a most distinguished honour for him to triumph before he was a
senator. Another thing also gained him the good-will of the many in no
small degree, for the people were delighted at his being reviewed
among the Equites after the triumph.

XV. Sulla[219] was annoyed to see to what a height of reputation and
power Pompeius was advancing, but as he was ashamed to attempt to
check his career he kept quiet. However, when Pompeius had brought
about the election of Lepidus as consul in spite of Sulla and against
his wish, by canvassing for Lepidus, and by employing the affection of
the people towards himself to induce them to favour Lepidus, Sulla
seeing Pompeius retiring with the crowd through the Forum, said, "I
see, young man, that you are pleased with your victory: and indeed how
can it be otherwise than generous and noble, for Lepidus, the vilest
of men, to be declared consul before Catulus the best, through your
management of the people? However, it is time for you not to slumber,
but to attend to affairs, for you have strengthened your rival against
yourself." Sulla showed mainly by his testament that he was not well
disposed to Pompeius, for he left legacies to his other friends, and
made them his son's guardians, but he passed over Pompeius
altogether. But Pompeius took this very quietly, and behaved on the
occasion as a citizen should do; and accordingly, when Lepidus and
some others were putting impediments in the way of the body being
interred in the Field of Mars, and were not for allowing the funeral
to be public, Pompeius brought his aid, and gave to the interment both
splendour and security.

XVI. As soon as Sulla's death made his prophetic warnings manifest,
and Lepidus was attempting to put himself in Sulla's place, not by any
circuitous movement or contrivance, but by taking up arms forthwith,
and again stirring up and gathering round him the remnants of the
factions which had long been enfeebled and had escaped from Sulla; and
his colleague Catulus, to whom the most honest and soundest part of
the Senate and the people attached themselves, was the first of the
Romans of the day for reputation of temperance and integrity, but was
considered to be better adapted for the conduct of civil than of
military affairs, and circumstances themselves were calling for
Pompeius, he did not hesitate what course to take, but attaching
himself to the optimates,[220] he was appointed commander of a force
to oppose Lepidus, who had already stirred up a large part of Italy
and held with an army under the command of Brutus, Gaul within the
Alps. Now Pompeius easily defeated the rest whom he attacked, but at
Mutina[221] in Gaul he sat down for some time opposite to Brutus,
while Lepidus having hurried on to Rome and posted himself before the
walls was demanding a second consulship and terrifying the citizens
with a numerous army. But the alarm was ended by a letter from
Pompeius, who had brought the war to a fortunate issue without a
battle. For Brutus, whether it was that he gave up his force himself
or was betrayed by his army changing sides, surrendered his person to
Pompeius and with some horsemen as an escort retired to one of the
small towns near the Padus, where after the interval of a single day
he was put to death by Geminius, whom Pompeius sent to him; and
Pompeius was much blamed for this. For at the very commencement of the
affair of the army changing sides, he wrote to the Senate that
Brutus[222] had voluntarily surrendered, and he then sent another
letter in which he criminated the man after he was put to death. This
Brutus was the father of the Brutus who together with Cassius killed
Cæsar, a man who neither fought nor died like his father, as is told
in his Life. As soon as Lepidus was driven from Italy, he made his
escape into Sardinia, where he fell sick and died of vexation, not at
the state of affairs, as they say, but from finding some writing by
which he discovered that his wife had committed adultery.

XVII. But a general, Sertorius,[223] who in no respect resembled
Lepidus, was in possession of Iberia and was hovering over the other
Romans, a formidable adversary; for the civil wars had concentrated
themselves as in a final disease in this one man, who had already
destroyed many of the inferior commanders, and was then engaged with
Metellus Pius, who was indeed a distinguished soldier and of great
military ability, but owing to old age was considered to be following
up the opportunities of war somewhat tardily, and was anticipated in
his plans by the quickness and rapidity of Sertorius, who attacked him
at all hazards and somewhat in robber fashion, and by his ambuscades
and circuitous movements confounded a man well practised in regular
battles and used to command a force of heavy-armed soldiers trained to
close fighting. Upon this Pompeius, who had an army under his command,
bestirred himself to be sent out to support Metellus; and though
Catulus ordered him to disband his force he would not obey, but kept
under arms in the neighbourhood of the city continually inventing
excuses, until the command was given to him on the proposal of Lucius
Philippus. It was on this occasion, as it is said, that some one in
the Senate asked Philippus with some surprise, if he thought that
Pompeius ought to be sent out as Proconsul,[224] and Philippus
replied, "Not as Proconsul, as I think, but in place of the Consuls,"
meaning that both the consuls of that year were good for nothing. I

XVIII. When Pompeius arrived in Iberia, as it usually happens with the
reputation of a new commander, he gave the people great hopes, and the
nations which were not firmly attached to the party of Sertorius began
to stir themselves and change sides; whereupon Sertorius gave vent to
arrogant expressions against Pompeius, and scoffingly said, he should
only need a cane and a whip for this youth, if he were not afraid of
that old woman, meaning Metellus. However he conducted his military
operations with more caution, as in fact he kept a close watch on
Pompeius and was afraid of him. For contrary to what one would have
expected, Metellus had become very luxurious in his mode of life and
had completely given himself up to pleasure, and there had been all at
once a great change in him to habits of pride and extravagance, so
that this also brought Pompeius a surpassing good-will and reputation,
inasmuch as he maintained a frugal mode of living, a thing that cost
him no great pains, for he was naturally temperate and well regulated
in his desires. Though there were many vicissitudes in the war, the
capture of Lauron by Sertorius gave Pompeius most annoyance; for while
he supposed that Sertorius was surrounded, and had uttered certain
boasting expressions, all at once it appeared that he himself was
completely hemmed in, and as for this reason he was afraid to stir, he
saw the city burnt before his face. But he defeated, near Valentia,
Herennius and Perpenna, who were men of military talent, and among
others had fled to Sertorius and served under him; and he slaughtered
above ten thousand of their men.

XIX. Elated by this success, and full of great designs, he hastened
to attack Sertorius himself, in order that Metellus might not share
the victory. They engaged on the banks of the Sucro, though it was
near the close of day, both parties fearing the arrival of Metellus,
one wishing to fight by himself, and the other wishing to have only
one opponent. The issue of the battle was doubtful, for one wing was
victorious on each side; but of the two commanders-in-chief Sertorius
got the more honour, for he put to flight the enemy who were opposed
to him. A man of tall stature, an infantry soldier, attacked Pompeius,
who was on horseback; and as they closed and came to a struggle, the
blows of the swords fell on the hands of both, but not with the same
effect; for Pompeius was only wounded, but he cut off the man's hand.
Now, as many men rushed upon Pompeius, and the rout had already begun,
he escaped, contrary to all expectation, by quitting his horse, which
had trappings of gold and decorations of great value; for while the
enemy were dividing the booty and fighting about it with one another,
they were left behind in the pursuit. At daybreak both commanders
again placed their forces in order of battle, with the intention of
securing the victory, but when Metellus approached, Sertorius
retreated and his army dispersed. For the fashion of his men was to
disperse and again to come together, so that Sertorius often wandered
about alone, and often appeared again at the head of one hundred and
fifty thousand men, like a winter-torrent suddenly swollen. Now, when
Pompeius went to meet Metellus after the battle, and they were near
one another, he ordered his lictors to lower their fasces out of
respect to Metellus as the superior in rank. But Metellus would not
allow this, and in all other respects he behaved with consideration to
Pompeius, not assuming any superiority on the ground of being a
consular and the elder, except that when the two armies encamped
together the watchword for both armies was given out by Metellus; but
the two armies generally encamped apart. For the enemy used to cut off
their communications and separate them, being fertile in stratagems,
and skilful in showing himself in many quarters in a short time, and
in leading from one combat to another. Finally, by cutting off their
supplies, plundering the country, and getting the command of the sea,
he drove both Pompeius and Metellus from that part of Iberia which was
under him, and they were compelled to fly to other provinces through
want of provisions.

XX. Pompeius having spent most of his own property and applied it to
the purposes of the war, demanded money of the senate, and said that
he would come to Italy with his army if they did not send it.
Lucullus, who was then consul, being at variance with Pompeius, and
intriguing to get the command in the Mithridatic war for himself,
bestirred himself to get money sent for fear of letting Pompeius have
a reason for leaving Sertorius, and attacking Mithridates, which he
wished to do, for Mithridates was considered to be an opponent whom it
would be an honour to oppose and easy to vanquish. In the meantime,
Sertorius[225] was assassinated by his friends, of whom Perpenna was
the chief leader, and he attempted to do what Sertorius had done,
having indeed the same troops and means, but not equal judgment for
the management of them. Now Pompeius immediately advanced against
Perpenna, and perceiving that he was floundering in his affairs, he
sent down ten cohorts into the plain, as a bait, and gave them orders
to disperse as if they were flying. When Perpenna had attacked the
cohorts, and was engaged in the pursuit, Pompeius appeared in full
force, and joining battle, gave the enemy a complete defeat. Most of
the officers fell in the battle; but Perpenna was brought to Pompeius,
who ordered him to be put to death, in which he did not show any
ingratitude, nor that he had forgotten what had happened in Sicily, as
some say, but he displayed great prudence and a judgment that was
advantageous to the commonweal. For Perpenna, who had got possession
of the writings of Sertorins, offered to produce letters from the most
powerful men in Rome, who being desirous to disturb the present
settlement and to change the constitution, invited Sertorius to Italy.
Now Pompeius, apprehending that this might give rise to greater wars
than those which were just ended, put Perpenna to death, and burnt the
letters without even reading them.

XXI. After staying[226] long enough to extinguish the chief
disturbances, and to quiet and settle those affairs which were in the
most inflammatory state, he led his army back to Italy, and happened
to arrive at the time when the servile war[227] was at its height.
This was the reason why Crassus the commander urged on the hazard of a
battle, which he gained, with the slaughter of twelve thousand three
hundred of the enemy. Fortune, however, in a manner adopted Pompeius
into this success also, for five thousand men who escaped from the
battle fell in his way, all of whom he destroyed, and he took the
opportunity of writing first to the senate, to say that Crassus indeed
had conquered the gladiators in a pitched battle, but he had pulled up
the war by the roots. And this was agreeable to the Romans to hear,
owing to their good-will towards Pompeius, and also to speak of. As to
Iberia and Sertorius, no one even in jest would have said that the
conquest was due to any one else than Pompeius. But though the man was
in such repute, and such expectations were entertained of him, there
was still some suspicion and fear that he would not disband his army,
but would make his way by arms and sovereign power straight to the
polity of Sulla. Accordingly, those who through fear ran to greet him
on the way, were as many as those who did it from good-will. But when
Pompeius had removed this suspicion also by declaring that he would
disband his army after the triumph, there still remained one subject
of reproach for those who envied him, that he attached himself more
to the people than to the senate, and that he had determined to
restore the authority of the tribunate, which Sulla had destroyed, and
to court the favour of the many, which was true. For there was nothing
for which the people were more madly passionate, and nothing which
they more desired, than to see that magistracy again, so that Pompeius
considered the opportunity for this political measure a great good
fortune, as he could not have found any other favour by which to
requite the good-will of the citizens, if another had anticipated him
in this.

XXII. Now after a second triumph[228] and the consulship were voted to
him, Pompeius was not for this reason considered an object of
admiration and a great man; but the people considered it a proof of
his distinction, that Crassus, though the richest of all who were
engaged in public life, and the most powerful speaker and the greatest
man, and though he despised Pompeius and everybody else, did not
venture to become a candidate for the consulship till he had applied
to Pompeius. Pompeius indeed was well pleased with this, as he had
long wished to have the opportunity of doing some service and friendly
act to Crassus. According he readily accepted the advances of Crassus,
and in his address to the people he declared that he should be as
grateful to them for his colleague as for the consulship. However,
when they were elected consuls, they differed about everything, and
came into collision: in the senate Crassus had more weight, but among
the people the influence of Pompeius was great. For Pompeius restored
the tribunate[229] to the people, and he allowed the judicia to be
again transferred to the Equites by a law. But the most agreeable of
all spectacles was that which Pompeius exhibited to the people when he
personally solicited his discharge from service. It is the custom
among the Roman Equites[230] when they have served the time fixed by
law, to lead their horse into the Forum before the two men whom they
call Censors, and after mentioning each general and Imperator under
whom they have served, and giving an account of their service, they
receive their dismissal. Honours also and infamy are awarded according
to each man's conduct. Now on this occasion the Censors Gellius and
Lentulus were sitting in all their official dignity, and the Equites
who were to be inspected were passing by, when Pompeius was seen
descending from the higher ground to the Forum, bearing the other
insignia of his office, but leading his horse by the hand. When he
came near and was full in sight, he bade the lictors make way for him,
and he led his horse to the tribunal. The people admired, and kept
profound silence; the censors were both awed and delighted at the
sight. Then the elder said: "I ask you, Pompeius Magnus, if you have
performed all the military services that the law requires?" Pompeius
replied with a loud voice, "I have performed all, and all under my own
command as Imperator." On hearing this the people broke out into loud
shouts, and it was impossible to repress the acclamations, so great
was their delight; but the censors rising, conducted Pompeius home to
please the citizens, who followed with loud expressions of applause.

XXIII. Now when the term of office was near expiring for Pompeius, and
the differences with Crassus wore increasing, one Caius
Aurelius,[231] who though a man of equestrian rank did not meddle with
public affairs, on the occasion of an assembly of the people ascended
the Rostra, and coming forward said, that Jupiter had appeared to him
in his sleep and had bid him tell the consuls not to lay down their
office before they were reconciled. On this being said, Pompeius stood
still, without saying a word, but Crassus making the first advance to
take his hand and address him, said, "I think I am doing nothing
ignoble or mean, fellow citizens, in being first to give way to
Pompeius, whom you considered worthy of the name of Magnus before he
had a beard, and decreed to him two triumphs before he was a senator."
Upon this they were reconciled and laid down their office. Now Crassus
continued the kind of life which he had originally adopted; but
Pompeius withdrew himself from his numerous engagements as advocate,
and gradually quitted the forum, and seldom went into public, and
always with a large crowd of people. For it was no longer easy to meet
with him or see him without a train; but he took most pleasure in
showing himself with a numerous company close around him, and by these
means he threw a dignity and importance about his presence, and
thought that he ought to keep his high rank from contact or
familiarity with the many. For life in the garment of peace is a
hazardous thing towards loss of reputation for those who have gained
distinction in arms and are ill suited for civil equality; for such
men claim the first place in peace also, as in war, while those who
get less honour in war cannot submit to have no advantage in peace at
least. Wherefore when they moot in the Forum with the man who has been
distinguished in camps and triumphs, they humble him and cast him
down; but if a man renounces all pretensions to civil distinction and
withdraws, they maintain his military honours and power untouched by
envy. Facts soon showed this.

XXIV. Now the power of the pirates[232] had its beginning in Cilicia,
and at first its adventure was attended with hazard and sought
concealment, but it gained confidence and daring in the Mithridatic
war by lending itself to aid the king. Then, the Romans being engaged
in the civil wars about the gates of Rome, the sea was left destitute
of all protection, and this by degrees drew them on, and encouraged
them not to confine their attacks to those who navigated the sea, but
to ravage islands and maritime cities. And now men who wore powerful
by wealth and of distinguished birth, and who claimed superior
education, began to embark on board piratical vessels and to share in
their undertakings as if the occupation was attended with a certain
reputation and was an object of ambition. There were also piratical
posts established in many places and fortified beacons, at which
armaments put in, which were fitted out for this peculiar occupation
not only with bold vigorous crews and skilful helmsmen and the speed
and lightness of the ships, but more annoying than their formidable
appearance was their arrogant and pompous equipment, with their golden
streamers[233] and purple sails and silvered oars, as if they rioted
in their evil practices and prided themselves on them. And flutes and
playing on stringed instruments and drinking along the whole coast,
and capture of persons high in office, and ransomings of captured
cities, were a disgrace to the Roman supremacy. Now the piratical
ships had increased to above a thousand, and the cities captured by
them were four hundred. They attacked and plundered the asyla and
sacred places which had hitherto been unapproached, such as those of
Claros,[234] Didyma, Samothrace, the temple of Chthonia in Hermione,
the temple of Æsculapius in Epidaurus, and those of Neptune at the
Isthmus and Tænaros and Kalauria, and those of Apollo at Actium and
Leucas, and that of Juno in Samos, and in Argos, and Lacinium. They
also performed strange rites on Olympus[235] and celebrated certain
mysterious ceremonies, among which were those of Mithras[236] and they
are continued to the present time, having been first introduced by
them. But they did most insult to the Romans, and going up from the
sea they robbed on their roads and plundered the neighbouring villas.
They once seized two prætors Sextilius and Bellinus in their purple
dress, and they carried off with them their attendants and lictors.
They also took the daughter of Antonius, a man who had enjoyed a
triumph, as she was going into the country, and she was ransomed at
great cost. But their most insulting behaviour was in the following
fashion. Whenever a man who was taken called out that he was a Roman
and mentioned his name, they would pretend to be terror-struck and to
be alarmed, and would strike their thighs and fall down at his knees
praying him to pardon them; and their captive would believe all this
to be real, seeing that they were humble and suppliant. Then some
would put Roman shoes on his feet, and others would throw over him a
toga, pretending it was done that there might be no mistake about him
again. When they had for some time mocked the man in this way and had
their fill of amusement, at last they would put a ladder down into the
sea, and bid him step out and go away with their best wishes for a
good journey; and if a man would not go, then they shoved him into the

XXV. The power of the pirates extended over the whole of our sea[237]
at once in a measure, so that it could not be navigated and was closed
against all trade. It was this which mainly induced the Romans, who
were hard pressed for provisions and were expecting great scarcity, to
send out Pompeius to clear the sea of the pirates. Gabinius,[238] one
of the friends of Pompeius, drew up a law which gave Pompeius, not a
naval command, but palpably sole dominion and power over all men
without any responsibility. For the law gave him authority over the
sea within the columns of Hercules and all the main land to the
distance of four hundred stadia from the sea. There were not many
places within the Roman dominions which lay beyond those limits, but
the chief nations and the most powerful of the kings were comprised
within them. Besides this, Pompeius was empowered to choose fifteen
legati from the Senate who should command in particular parts, to take
from the treasuries and from the Publicani as much money as he
pleased, and two hundred ships, with full authority as to the number
and levying of the armed force and of the rowers for the vessels. When
these provisions of the law were read, the people received them with
exceeding great satisfaction, but the chief of the Senate and the most
powerful citizens considered that this unlimited and indefinite power
was indeed too great to be an object of envy, but was a matter for
alarm. Accordingly with the exception of Cæsar they opposed the law;
but Cæsar spoke in favour of it, though indeed he cared very little
for Pompeius, but from the beginning it was his plan to insinuate
himself into the popular favour and to gain over the people. But the
rest vehemently assailed Pompeius. One of the consuls who had observed
to him that if he emulated Romulus he would not escape the end of
Romulus, was near being killed by the people. When Catulus came
forward to speak against the law, the people out of respect were
silent for some time; but after he had spoken at length with
honourable mention of Pompeius and without any invidious remark, and
then advised the people to spare him and not to expose such a man to
repeated dangers and wars, "What other man," he continued, "will you
have, if you lose him?" when with one accord all the people replied,
"Yourself." Now as Catulus could produce no effect, he retired from
the Rostra; when Roscius[239] came forward, nobody listened, but he
made signs with his fingers that they should not appoint Pompeius to
the sole command, but should give him a colleague. At this it is said
that the people being irritated sent forth such a shout, that a
crow[240] which was flying over the Forum was stunned and fell down
into the crowd. Whence it appears, that birds which fall, do not
tumble into a great vacuum in the air caused by its rending and
separation, but that they are struck by the blow of the voice, which,
when it is carried along with great mass and strength, causes an
agitation and a wave in the air.

XXVI. Now for the time the assembly was dissolved. But on the day on
which they were going to put the law to the vote, Pompeius privately
retired to the country, but on hearing that the law had passed, he
entered the city by night, considering that he should make himself an
object of jealousy if the people met him and crowded about him. At
daybreak he came into public and sacrificed; and an assembly being
summoned he contrived to get many other things in addition to what had
been voted, and nearly doubled his armament. For he manned five
hundred ships, and one hundred and twenty thousand heavy-armed
soldiers and five thousand horse were raised. He chose out of the
senate twenty-four men who had held command and served the office of
prætor; and there were two quæstors. As the prices of provisions
immediately fell, it gave the people, who were well pleased to have
it, opportunity to say that the very name of Pompeius had put an end
to the war. However, by dividing the waters and the whole space of the
internal sea into thirteen parts and appointing a certain number of
ships and a commander for each, with his force, which was thus
dispersed in all directions, he surrounded the piratical vessels that
fell in his way in a body, and forthwith hunted them down and brought
them into port; but those who separated from one another before they
were taken and effected their escape, crowded from all parts and made
their way to Cilicia as to a hive; and against them Pompeius himself
went with sixty of the best ships. But he did not sail against them
till he had completely cleared of the piratical vessels the Tyrrhenian
sea, the Libyan, and the seas around Sardinia, and Corsica, and
Sicily, in forty days in all, by his own unwearied exertions and the
active co-operation of his commanders.

XXVII. In Rome the consul Piso, through passion and envy, was damaging
the preparations for the war, and disbanding the seamen who were to
man the ships, but Pompeius sent round his navy to Brundisium and
himself advanced through Tyrrhenia to Rome. On hearing this all the
people poured forth out of the city upon the road, just as if they had
not only a few days before conducted him out of the city. And the
rejoicing was caused by the speediness of the change, which was
contrary to expectation, for the Forum had a superabundance of
provisions. The consequence was that Piso ran the risk of being
deprived of the consulship, for Gabinius had already a law drawn up.
But Pompeius prevented this, and having managed everything else with
moderation and got what he wanted, he went down to Brundisium and set
sail. But though he was pressed by the urgency of the business and
sailed past the cities in his haste, still he did not pass by Athens
but he went up to it. After sacrifices to the gods and addressing the
people, just as he was quitting the place he read two inscriptions,
each of a single verse, addressed to him, the one within the gate,

     "As thou own'st thyself a mortal, so thou art in truth a God."

and that on the outside:

     "Expected, welcomed, seen, we now conduct thee forth."

Now as he treated mercifully some of the piratical crews which still
held together and were cruising about the seas upon their preferring
entreaties to him, and after receiving a surrender of their vessels
and persons did them no harm, the rest entertaining good hopes
attempted to get out of the way of the other officers, and coming to
Pompeius they put themselves into his hands with their children and
wives. But he spared all, and it was chiefly through their assistance
that he tracked out and caught[241] those who still lurked in
concealment, as being conscious that they had committed unpardonable

XXVIII. The greater part and the most powerful of the pirates had
deposited their families and wealth, and their useless people, in
garrisons and strong forts among the heights of the Taurus; but
manning their ships the pirates themselves awaited the approach of
Pompeius near Coracesium[242] in Cilicia, and a battle was fought in
which they were defeated and afterwards blockaded. At last sending a
suppliant message they surrendered themselves and their cities and the
islands of which they had possession and in which they had built forts
that were difficult to force and hard to approach. Accordingly the war
was ended, and all the pirates were driven from the sea in no more
than three months. Pompeius received by surrender many ships, and
among them ninety with brazen beaks. The pirates, who amounted to more
than twenty thousand, he never thought of putting to death, but he
considered that it would not be prudent to let them go and to allow
them to be dispersed or to unite again, being poor, and warlike and
many in number. Reflecting then that by nature man neither is made nor
is a wild animal nor unsocial, and that he changes his character by
the practice of vice which is contrary to his nature, but that he is
tamed by habits and change of place and life, and that wild beasts by
being accustomed to a gentler mode of living put off their wildness
and savageness, he determined to transfer the men to the land from the
sea and to let them taste a quiet life by being accustomed to live in
cities and to cultivate the ground. The small and somewhat depopulated
cities of Cilicia received some of the pirates whom they associated
with themselves, and the cities received some additional tracts of
land; and the city of Soli,[243] which had lately been deprived of its
inhabitants by Tigranes[244] the Armenian king, he restored and
settled many of them in it. To the greater part he gave as their
residence Dyme[245] in Achæa, which was then without inhabitants and
had much good land.

XXIX. Now those who envied Pompeius found fault with these measures;
but as to his conduct towards Metellus[246] in Crete, even his best
friends were not pleased with it. Metellus, who was a kinsman of the
Metellus who had the command in Iberia jointly with Pompeius, was sent
as commander to Crete before Pompeius was chosen. For Crete was a kind
of second source of pirates and next to Cilicia; and Metellus having
caught many of them in the island took them prisoners and put them to
death. Those who still survived and were blockaded, sent a suppliant
message and invited Pompeius to the island, as being a part of his
government and falling entirely within the limits reckoned from the
coast. Pompeius accepted the invitation and wrote to Metellus to
forbid him continuing the war. He also wrote to the cities not to pay
any attention to Metellus, and he sent as commander one of his own
officers, Lucius Octavius, who entering into the forts of the besieged
pirates and fighting on their side made Pompeius not only odious and
intolerable, but ridiculous also, inasmuch as he lent his name to
accursed and godless men and threw around them his reputation as a
kind of amulet, through envy and jealousy of Metellus. Neither did
Achilles,[247] it was argued, act like a man, but like a youth all
full of violence and passionately pursuing glory, when he made a sign
to the rest of the Greeks and would not let them strike Hector,

    "For fear another gave the blow and won
    The fame, and he should second only come;"

but Pompeius even protected and fought in behalf of the common enemy,
that he might deprive of a triumph a general who had endured so much
toil. Metellus however did not give in, but he took and punished the
pirates, and after insulting and abusing Octavius in his camp he let
him go.

XXX. When news reached Rome that the Pirates' war was at an end and
that Pompeius being now at leisure was visiting the cities,
Manlius,[248] one of the tribunes, proposed a law, that Pompeius
should take all the country and force which Lucullus commanded, with
the addition of Bithynia, which Glabrio[249] had, and should carry on
the war against the kings Mithridates and Tigranes, with both the
naval force and the dominion of the sea on the terms on which he
received it originally. This was in short for the Roman dominion to be
placed at the disposal of one man. For the provinces which alone he
could not touch under the former law, Phrygia, Lycaonia, Galatia,
Cappadocia, Cilicia, the upper Colchis, Armenia, these he now had
together with the armies and resources with which Lucullus defeated
Mithridates and Tigranes. But though Lucullus was thus deprived of the
glory of his achievements and was receiving a successor in a triumph
rather than in a war, the aristocratical party thought less of this,
though they considered that the man was treated unjustly and
ungratefully, but they were much dissatisfied with the power of
Pompeius which they viewed as the setting up of a tyranny, and they
severally exhorted and encouraged one another to oppose the law and
not to give up their freedom. But when the time came, the rest kept
back through fear of the people and were silent, except Catulus, who
after finding much fault with the law and the tribune, yet without
persuading any one, urged the Senate from the Rostra, repeating it
many times, to seek for a mountain,[250] like their ancestors, and a
rock, to which they might fly for refuge and preserve their liberty.
Accordingly the law was ratified, as they say, by all the tribes[251]
and Pompeius in his absence was put in possession of nearly
everything which Sulla got after he had made himself master of the
city by arms and war. On receiving the letters and reading the decrees
in the presence of his friends who were congratulating him, Pompeius
is said to have contracted his eyebrows and to have struck his thigh,
and to have spoken like a man who was already tired and averse to
command, "Oh, the endless toils, how much better it were to have been
one unknown to fame, if there shall never be an end to my military
service and I shall never elude this envy and live quietly in the
country with my wife."[252] On hearing these expressions not even his
intimate friends could endure his hypocritical pretences, as they knew
that he was the more delighted, inasmuch as his difference with
Lucullus gave additional fire to his innate ambition and love of

XXXI. And in truth his acts soon discovered his real temper: for he
issued counter-edicts in all directions by which he required the
presence of the soldiers and summoned to him the subject rulers and
kings. And as he traversed the country, he let nothing that Lucullus
had done remain undisturbed, but he both remitted the punishments of
many, and took away what had been given, and in short he left nothing
undone in his eagerness to prove to the admirers of Lucullus[253] that
he was entirely without power. Lucullus through his friends complained
to Pompeius, and it was agreed that they should have a meeting. They
met in Galatia: and as they were most distinguished generals and had
won the greatest victories, their lictors met with the fasces wreathed
with bay; but Lucullus advanced from green and shady parts, and
Pompeius happened to have crossed an extensive tract without trees and
parched. Accordingly the lictors of Lucullus seeing that the bays of
Pompeius were faded and completely withered, gave them some of their
own which were fresh, and so decorated and wreathed the fasces of
Pompeius with them. This was considered a sign that Pompeius was
coming to carry off the prizes of victory and the glory that was due
to Lucullus. As to the order of his consulship and in age also
Lucullus had the priority, but the reputation of Pompeius was more
exalted on account of his two triumphs. However they managed their
first interview with as much civility and friendliness as they could,
magnifying the exploits of each other, and congratulating one another
on their victories: in their conferences however they came to no
reasonable or fair settlement, but even fell to mutual abuse, Pompeius
charging Lucullus with avarice, and Lucullus charging Pompeius with
love of power; and they were with difficulty separated by their
friends. Lucullus being in Galatia assigned portions of the captured
land and gave other presents to whom he chose; while Pompeius, who was
encamped at a short distance, prevented any attention being paid to
the orders of Lucullus, and took from him all his soldiers except
sixteen hundred, whose mutinous disposition he thought would make them
useless to himself, but hostile to Lucullus. Besides this, Pompeius
disparaged the exploits of Lucullus and openly said that Lucullus had
warred against tragedies and mere shadows of kings, while to himself
was reserved the contest against a genuine power and one that had
grown wiser by losses, for Mithridates was now having recourse to
shields, and swords and horses. Lucullus retorting said, that Pompeius
was going to fight with a phantom and a shadow of war, being
accustomed, like a lazy bird, to descend upon the bodies that others
had slaughtered and to tear the remnants of wars; for so had he
appropriated to himself the victories over Sertorius, Lepidus and
Spartacus, though Crassus, Metellus and Catulus had respectively
gained these victories: it was no wonder then, if Pompeius was
surreptitiously trying to get the credit of the Armenian and Pontic
wars, he who had in some way or other contrived to intrude himself
into a triumph over runaway slaves.

XXXII. Lucullus[254] now retired, and Pompeius after distributing his
whole naval force over the sea between Phœnicia and the Bosporus to
keep guard, himself marched against Mithridates, who had thirty
thousand foot soldiers of the phalanx and two thousand horsemen, but
did not venture to fight. First of all, Mithridates left a strong
mountain which was difficult to assault, whereon he happened to be
encamped, because he supposed there was no water there; but Pompeius,
after occupying the same mountain, conjectured from the nature of the
vegetation upon it and the hollows formed by the slopes of the ground
that the place contained springs, and he ordered wells to be dug in
all parts: and immediately the whole army had abundance of water, so
that it was a matter of surprise that Mithridates had all along been
ignorant of this. Pompeius then surrounded Mithridates with his troops
and hemmed him in with his lines. After being blockaded forty-five
days Mithridates succeeded in stealing away with the strongest part of
his army, after having first massacred those who were unfit for
service and were sick. Next, Pompeius overtook him on the Euphrates
and pitched his camp near him; and fearing lest Mithridates should
frustrate his design by crossing the river, he led his army against
him in battle order at midnight, at which very hour it is said that
Mithridates had a vision in his sleep which forewarned him of what was
going to happen. He dreamed that he was sailing on the Pontic sea with
a fair wind, and was already in sight of the Bosporus, and
congratulating his fellow voyagers, as a man naturally would do in his
joy at a manifest and sure deliverance; but all at once he saw himself
abandoned by everybody and drifting about upon a small piece of wreck.
While he was suffering under this anguish and these visions, his
friends came to his bed-side and roused him with the news that
Pompeius was attacking them. The enemy accordingly must of necessity
fight in defence of their camp, and the generals leading their forces
out put them in order of battle. Pompeius, seeing the preparations to
oppose him, hesitated about running any risk in the dark, and thought
that he ought only to surround the enemy, to prevent their escape, and
attack them when it was daylight, inasmuch as their numbers were
greater. But the oldest centurions by their entreaties and
exhortations urged him on; for it was not quite dark, but the moon
which was descending in the horizon still allowed them to see objects
clear enough. And it was this which most damaged the king's troops.
For the Romans advanced with the moon on their backs, and as the light
was much depressed towards the horizon, the shadows were projected a
long way in front of the soldiers and fell upon the enemy, by reason
of which they could not accurately estimate the distance between them
and the Romans, but supposing that they were already at close quarters
they threw their javelins without effect and struck nobody. The Romans
perceiving this rushed upon the enemy with shouts, and as they did not
venture to stand their ground, but were terror-struck and took to
flight, the Romans slaughtered them to the number of much more than
ten thousand, and took their camp. Mithridates at the commencement
with eight hundred horsemen cut his way through the Romans, but the
rest were soon dispersed and he was left alone with three persons, one
of whom was his concubine Hypsikratia,[255] who on all occasions
showed the spirit of a man and desperate courage; and accordingly the
king used to call her Hypsikrates. On this occasion, armed like a
Persian and mounted on horseback, she was neither exhausted by the
long journeys nor ever wearied of attending to the King's person and
his horse, till they came to a place called Inora,[256] which was
filled with the King's property and valuables. Here Mithridates took
costly garments and distributed among those who had flocked to him
after the battle. He also gave to each of his friends a deadly poison
to carry about with them, that none of them might fall into the hands
of the Romans against his will. Thence he set out towards Armenia to
Tigranes, but Tigranes forbade him to come and set a price of a
hundred talents upon him, on which Mithridates passed by the sources
of the Euphrates and continued his flight through Colchis.[257]
XXXIII. Pompeius invaded Armenia at the invitation of young
Tigranes,[258] who had now revolted from his father, and he met
Pompeius near the river Araxes,[259] which rises in the same parts
with the Euphrates, but turns to the east and enters the Caspian Sea.
Pompeius and Tigranes received the submission of the cities as they
advanced: but King Tigranes, who had been lately crushed by Lucullus,
and heard that Pompeius was of a mild and gentle disposition, admitted
a Roman garrison into his palace,[260] and taking with him his friends
and kinsmen advanced to surrender himself. As he approached the camp
on horseback, two lictors of Pompeius came up to him and ordered him
to dismount from his horse and to enter on foot: they told him that no
man on horseback had ever been seen in a Roman camp. Tigranes obeyed
their orders, and taking off his sword presented it to them; and
finally, when Pompeius came towards him, pulling off his
cittaris,[261] he hastened to lay it before his feet, and what was
most humiliating of all, to throw himself down at his knees. But
Pompeius prevented this by laying hold of his right hand and drawing
the king towards him; he also seated Tigranes by his side, and his son
on the other side, and said that Tigranes ought so far to blame
Lucullus only, who had taken from him Syria, Phœnicia, Cilicia,
Galatia, and Sophene,[262] but that what he had kept up to that time,
he should still have, if he paid as a compensation to the Romans for
his wrongful deeds six thousand talents, and his son should be King of
Sophene. Tigranes assented to these terms, and being overjoyed by the
Romans saluting him as king, he promised to give every soldier half a
mina of silver,[263] to a centurion ten minæ, and to a tribune a
talent. But his son took this ill, and on being invited to supper he
said that he was not in want of Pompeius to show such honour as this,
for he would find another Roman.[264] In consequence of this he was
put in chains and kept for the triumph. No long time after Phraates
the Parthian sent to demand the young man, as his son-in-law, and to
propose that the Euphrates should be the boundary of the two powers.
Pompeius replied that Tigranes belonged to his father rather than to
his father-in-law, and that as to a boundary he should determine that
on the principles of justice.

XXXIV. Leaving Afranius in care of Armenia, Pompeius advanced through
the nations that dwell about the Caucasus,[265] as of necessity he
must do, in pursuit of Mithridates. The greatest of these nations are
Albani and Iberians, of whom the Iberians extend to the Moschic
mountains and the Pontus, and the Albani extend to the east and the
Caspian Sea. The Albani at first allowed a free passage to Pompeius at
his request; but as winter overtook the Romans in the country and they
were occupied with the festival of the Saturnalia,[266] mustering to
the number of forty thousand they attacked the Romans, after crossing
the Cyrnus[267] river, which rising in the Iberian mountains and
receiving the Araxes which comes down from Armenia, empties itself by
twelve mouths into the Caspian. Others say that the Araxes does not
join this stream, but that it has a separate outlet, though near to
the other, into the same sea. Pompeius, though he could have opposed
the enemy while they were crossing the river, let them cross quietly,
and then he attacked and put them to flight and destroyed a great
number. As the King begged for pardon, and sent ambassadors, Pompeius
excused him for the wrong that he had done, and making a treaty with
him, advanced against the Iberians, who were as numerous as the Albani
and more warlike, and had a strong wish to please Mithridates and to
repel Pompeius. For the Iberians had never submitted either to the
Medes or the Persians,[268] and they had escaped the dominion of the
Macedonians also, inasmuch as Alexander soon quitted Hyrkania. However
Pompeius routed the Iberians also in a great battle, in which nine
thousand of them were killed and above ten thousand taken prisoners,
and he entered Colchis; and on the Phasis[269] he was met by Servilius
with the vessels with which he was guarding the Pontus.

XXXV. The pursuit of Mithridates was attended with great difficulties,
as he had plunged among the nations around the Bosporus and the
Mæotis; and intelligence reached Pompeius that the Albani had again
revolted. Moved by passion and desire of revenge, Pompeius turned
against the Albani. He again crossed the Cyrnus with difficulty and
danger, for the river had been fenced off with stakes to a great
extent by the barbarians; and as the passage of the river was
succeeded by a long waterless and difficult march, he had ten thousand
skins filled with water and then advanced against the enemy, whom he
found posted on the river Abas[270] to the number of sixty thousand
foot and twelve thousand cavalry, but poorly armed, and for the most
part only with the skins of beasts. They were commanded by a brother
of the king, named Kosis, who, when the two armies had come to close
quarters, rushed against Pompeius and struck him with a javelin on the
fold[271] of his breastplate, but Pompeius with his javelin in his
hand pierced him through and killed him. In this battle it is said
that Amazons[272] also fought on the side of the barbarians, and that
they had come down hither from the mountains about the river
Thermodon. For after the battle, when the Romans were stripping the
barbarians, they found Amazonian shields and boots, but no body of a
woman was seen. The Amazons inhabit those parts of the Caucasus which
extend towards the Hyrcanian sea, but they do not border on the
Albani, for Gelæ and Leges dwell between; and they cohabit with these
people every year for two months, meeting them on the river Thermodon,
after which they depart and live by themselves.

XXXVI. After the battle Pompeius set out to advance to the
Hyrkanian[273] and Caspian sea, but he was turned from his route by
the number of deadly reptiles, when he was three days' march from it.
He retired to the Less Armenia; and he returned a friendly answer to
the Kings of the Elymæi[274] and Medes who sent ambassadors, but
against the Parthian king who had invaded Gordyene and was plundering
the people of Tigranes, he sent Afranius with a force who drove him
out and pursued him as far as the territory of Arbela. Of all the
concubines of Mithridates who were brought to him, he knew not one,
but sent all back to their parents and kin; for the greater part were
the daughters and wives of generals and princes. Stratonike,[275] who
was in the greatest repute and guarded the richest of the forts, was,
it is said, the daughter of a harp-player, who was not rich and was an
old man; and she made so sudden a conquest of Mithridates over his
wine by her playing, that he kept the woman and went to bed with her,
but sent away the old man much annoyed at not having been even civilly
spoken to by the king. In the morning, however, when he got up and saw
in his house tables loaded with silver and golden cups, and a great
train of attendants, with eunuchs and boys bringing to him costly
garments, and a horse standing before the door equipped like those
that carried the king's friends, thinking that this was all mockery
and a joke he made an attempt to escape through the door. But when the
slaves laid hold of him and told him that the king had made him a
present of the large substance of a rich man who had just died, and
that this was but a small foretaste and sample of other valuables and
possessions that were to come, after this explanation hardly convinced
he took the purple dress, and leaping on the horse rode through the
city exclaiming, "All this is mine." To those who laughed at him he
said, this was nothing strange, but it was rather strange that he did
not pelt with stones those who came in his way, being mad with
delight. Of this stock and blood was Stratonike. But she gave up this
place to Pompeius, and also brought him many presents, of which he
took only such as seemed suitable to decorate the temples and add
splendour to his triumph, and he told her she was welcome to keep the
rest. In like manner when the King of the Iberians sent him a couch
and a table and a seat all of gold, and begged him to accept them, he
delivered them also to the quæstors for the treasury.

XXXVII. In the fort Kænum[276] Pompeius found also private writings
of Mithridates, which he read through with some pleasure as they gave
him a good opportunity of learning the man's character. They were
memoirs,[277] from which it was discovered that he had taken off by
poison[278] among many others his son Ariarathes and Alkæus of Sardis
because he got the advantage over the King in riding racehorses. There
were registered also interpretations of dreams,[279] some of which he
had seen himself, and others had been seen by some of his women; and
there were lewd letters of Monime[280] to him and his answers to her.
Theophanes says that there was also found an address of Rutilius[281]
in which he urged the King to the massacre of the Romans in Asia. But
most persons with good reason suppose this to be a malicious story of
Theophanes, perhaps invented through hatred to Rutilius, who was a
man totally unlike himself, or perchance to please Pompeius, whose
father Rutilius in his historical writings had shown to be a
thoroughly unprincipled fellow.

XXXVIII. Thence Pompeius went to Amisus,[282] where his ambition led
him to reprehensible measures. For though he had abused Lucullus
greatly, because while the enemy was still alive, he published edicts
for the settlement of the countries and distributed gifts and honours,
things which victors are accustomed to do when a war is brought to a
close and is ended, he himself, while Mithridates was still ruling in
the Bosporus[283] and had got together a force sufficient to enable
him to take the field again, just as if everything was finished, began
to do the very things that Lucullus had done, settling the provinces,
and distributing gifts, many commanders and princes, and twelve
barbarous kings having come to him. Accordingly he did not even deign
when writing in reply to the Parthian,[284] as other persons did, to
address him by the title of King of Kings, and he neglected to do this
to please the other kings. He was also seized with a desire and a
passion to get possession of Syria and to advance through Arabia to
the Erythræan sea,[285] that in his victorious career he might reach
the ocean that encompasses the world on all sides; for in Libya he was
the first who advanced victoriously as far as the external sea, and
again in Iberia he made the Atlantic sea the boundary of the Roman
dominion; and thirdly, in his recent pursuit of the Albani he came
very near to reaching the Hyrkanian sea. Accordingly he now put his
army in motion that he might connect the circuit of his military
expeditions with the Erythræan sea; and besides, he saw that
Mithridates was difficult to be caught by an armed force, and was a
harder enemy to deal with when flying than when fighting.

XXXIX. Wherefore, remarking that he would leave behind him for
Mithridates an enemy stronger than himself, famine, he set vessels to
keep a guard on the merchants who sailed to the Bosporus; and death
was the penalty for those who were caught. Taking the great bulk of
his army he advanced on his march, and falling in with the bodies
still unburied of those who with Triarius[286] had fought
unsuccessfully against Mithridates and fallen in battle, he buried all
with splendid ceremonial and due honours. It was the neglect of this
which is considered to have been the chief cause of the hatred to
Lucullus. After subduing by his legate Afranius the Arabs in the
neighbourhood of the Amanus,[287] he descended into Syria, which he
made a province and a possession of the Roman people on the ground
that it had no legitimate kings; and he subdued Judæa[288] and took
King Aristobulus prisoner. He built some cities, and he gave others
their liberty and punished the tyrants in them. But he spent most time
in judicial business, settling the disputes of cities and kings, and
in those cases for which he had no leisure, sending his friends; as
for instance to the Armenians and Parthians, who referred to him the
decision as to the country[289] in dispute between them, he sent three
judges and conciliators. For great was the fame of his power, and no
less was the fame of his virtue and mildness; by reason of which he
was enabled to veil most of the faults of his friends and intimates,
for he did not possess the art of checking or punishing evil doers,
but he so behaved towards those who had anything to do with him, that
they patiently endured both the extortion and oppression of the

XL. The person who had most influence with Pompeius was Demetrius, a
freedman, a youth not without understanding, but who abused his good
fortune. The following story is told of him. Cato the philosopher, who
was still a young man, but had a great reputation and already showed a
lofty spirit, went up to Antioch,[290] when Pompeius was not there,
wishing to examine the city. Now Cato, as was his custom, walked on
foot, but his friends who were journeying with him were on horseback.
Observing before the gate a crowd of men in white vestments, and along
the road, on one side the ephebi, and on the other the boys, in
separate bodies, he was out of humour, supposing that this was done
out of honour and respect to him who wanted nothing of the kind.
However he bade his friends dismount and walk with him. As they came
near, the man who was arranging and settling all this ceremony, with a
crown on his head and a wand in his hand, met them and asked where
they had left Demetrius and when he would arrive. Now the friends of
Cato fell a-laughing, but Cato exclaimed, "O wretched city," and
passed by without making further answer. However Pompeius himself made
Demetrius less an object of odium to others by submitting to his
caprices without complaint. For it is said that frequently when
Pompeius at entertainments was waiting for and receiving his guests,
Demetrius would already have taken his place at the table, reclining
with haughty air, and with his vest[291] over his ears hanging down.
Before he had returned to Rome, Demetrius had got possession of the
most agreeable places in the suburbs, and the finest pleasure-grounds
and costly gardens were called Demetrian; and yet up to his third
triumph Pompeius was lodged in a moderate and simple manner. But
afterwards when he was erecting for the Romans that beautiful and
far-famed theatre,[292] he built, what may be compared to the small
boat that is towed after a big vessel, close by a house more
magnificent than he had before; and yet even this was so far from
being such a building as to excite any jealousy that the person who
became the owner of it after Pompeius, was surprised when he entered
it, and he asked where Pompeius Magnus used to sup. Such is the story
about these matters.

XLI. The King of the Arabians in the neighbourhood of Petra[293]
hitherto had not troubled himself at all about the Romans, but now
being much alarmed he wrote to say that he was ready to submit and to
do anything. Pompeius wishing to confirm him in this disposition made
an expedition against Petra, wherein he did not altogether escape
censure from most people. For they considered that this was evading
the pursuit of Mithridates, and they urged him to turn against him who
was his old antagonist and was fanning his flame and preparing
according to report to lead an army through the country of the
Scythians and Pæonians[294] against Italy. But Pompeius thinking it
would be easier to crush the forces of Mithridates in the field than
to overtake him when he was flying, did not choose to exhaust himself
to no purpose in a pursuit, and he contrived to find other occupations
in the interval of the war and he protracted the time. Fortune,
however, settled the difficulty; for when he was at no great distance
from Petra, and had already pitched his camp for that day and was
exercising himself with his horse around the camp, letter-bearers rode
up from Pontus with good tidings. This was manifest at once by the
points of their spears, for they were wreathed with bay. Pompeius at
first wished to finish his exercises, but as the men called out and
entreated him, he leapt from his horse and taking the letters advanced
into the camp. But as there was no tribunal[295] and there had not
been time to make even the kind of tribunal that is used in the camp,
which they are accustomed to form by digging out large lumps of earth
and putting them together upon one another, in their then zeal and
eagerness they piled together the loadings of the beasts of burden and
raised an elevated place. Pompeius ascending this announced to the
soldiers, that Mithridates was dead, having put an end to his own life
because his son Pharnakes[296] rebelled against him, and Pharnakes had
taken possession of everything in those parts, and put all under his
own dominion and that of the Romans, as he said in his letter.

XLII. Upon this the soldiers being delighted, as was natural, occupied
themselves with sacrifices and entertainments, considering that in the
person of Mithridates ten thousand enemies had expired. Pompeius
having brought his own undertakings and expeditions to a termination,
which he had not anticipated could be so easily done, immediately
retired from Arabia; and quickly traversing the intermediate provinces
he arrived at Amisus, where he found that many presents had been sent
by Pharnakes and many corpses of members of the royal family, and the
corpse of Mithridates also, which could not well be recognised by the
face (for those who had embalmed the body had neglected to destroy the
brain); but those who wished to see the body, recognised it by the
scars. Pompeius himself would not see the body, but fearing divine
retribution[297] he sent it off to Sinope.[298] He was amazed at the
dress and armour of Mithridates, both at the size and splendour of
what he saw; though the sword belt, which cost four hundred talents,
Publius stole and sold to Ariarathes, and the cittaris, a piece of
wonderful workmanship, Gaius the foster-brother of Mithridates himself
gave to Faustus the son of Sulla who asked for it. Pompeius did not
know this at the time; but Pharnakes who afterwards discovered it
punished the thieves. After Pompeius had arranged and settled affairs
in those parts, he continued his march with more pomp. On arriving at
Mitylene[299] he gave the city its freedom for the sake of Theophanes,
and he witnessed the usual contest there among the poets, the sole
subject being his own exploits. Being pleased with the theatre he had
a sketch taken of it and a plan made, with the intention of making one
like it in Rome, but larger and more splendid. When he was in Rhodes,
he heard all the sophists and made each a present of a talent.
Poseidonius[300] put in writing the discourse which he read before
Pompeius in opposition to the rhetorician Hermagoras on the doctrine
of general invention. In Athens Pompeius behaved in like manner to the
philosophers, and after giving also to the city fifty talents towards
its restoration, he was in hopes to set foot in Italy with a
reputation above that of any man and to be received by his family with
the same eagerness that he had to see them. But the Dæmon[301] who
takes care always to mix some portion of ill with the great and
glorious good things which come from Fortune, had long been lurking on
the watch and preparing to make his return more painful to him. For
during the absence of Pompeius his wife Mucia[302] had been
incontinent. Indeed while Pompeius was at a distance he treated the
report with contempt, but when he had come near to Italy, and had
examined the charge with more deliberation, as it seems, he sent her
notice of divorce, though neither then nor afterwards did he say for
what reason he put her away: but the reason is mentioned in Cicero's

XLIII. All kinds of reports about Pompeius preceded his arrival at
Rome, and there was great alarm, as it was supposed that he would
forthwith lead his army against the city and that a monarchy[303]
would be firmly established. Crassus taking his sons and his money
secretly got away from Rome, whether it was that he really was afraid,
or, what is more probable, he wished to give credibility to the
calumny and to strengthen the odium against Pompeius. As soon,
however, as Pompeius landed[304] in Italy, he summoned his soldiers to
an assembly,and after saying what was suitable to the occasion and
expressing his affectionate thanks to them, he bade them disperse
among their several cities and each go to his home, remembering to
meet again for his triumph. The army being thus dispersed, and the
fact being generally known, a wonderful circumstance happened. For the
cities seeing Pompeius Magnus unarmed and advancing with a few
friends, as if he were returning from an ordinary journey, pouring
forth through good will and forming an escort brought him into Rome
with a larger force, so that if he had designed to make any change and
revolution at that time he would not have wanted the army which he had

XLIV. As the law did not allow a general to enter the city before his
triumph, Pompeius sent to the Senate to request they would put off the
consular elections and to grant him this favour, that he might in his
own person assist Piso in his canvass. As Cato opposed his request, he
did not attain his object. But Pompeius admiring Cato's boldness of
speech and the vigour which he alone openly displayed in behalf of the
law, desired in some way or other to gain the man; and as Cato had two
nieces, Pompeius wished to take one of them to wife and to marry the
other to his son. Cato saw his object, which he viewed as a way of
corrupting him and in a manner bribing him by a matrimonial alliance;
but his sister and wife took it ill that he should reject an alliance
with Pompeius Magnus. In the mean time Pompeius wishing to get
Afranius[305] made consul, expended money on his behalf among the
tribes, and the voters came down to the gardens of Pompeius where they
received the money, so that the thing became notorious and Pompeius
had an ill name for making that office which was the highest of all
and which he obtained for his services, venal for those who were
unable to attain to it by merit. "These reproaches however," said Cato
to the women, "we must take our share of, if we become allied to
Pompeius." On hearing this the women agreed that he formed a better
judgment than themselves as to what was proper.

XLV. Though the triumph[306] was distributed over two days, such was
its magnitude that the time was not sufficient, but much of the
preparation was excluded from the spectacle, and enough for the
splendour and ornament of another procession. The nations over which
Pompeius triumphed were designated by titles placed in front. The
nations were the following, Pontus, Armenia, Cappadocia, Paphlagonia,
Media, Colchis, the Iberians, Albani, Syria, Cilicia, Mesopotamia, the
parts about Phœnice and Palestine, Judæa, Arabia, and the whole body
of pirates by sea and land who had been subdued. Among these nations
fortified places not fewer than a thousand were taken, and cities not
far short of nine hundred, and eight hundred piratical ships; and
cities forty save one were founded. Besides this it was shown on
written tablets that 5000 myriads (fifty millions) were the produce of
the taxes, while from the additions that he had made to the state they
received 8500 myriads (eighty-five millions), and there were brought
into the public treasury in coined money and vessels of gold and
silver twenty thousand talents, not including what had been given to
the soldiers, of whom he who received the least according to his
proportion received fifteen hundred drachmæ. The captives who appeared
in the procession, besides the chief pirates, were the son of Tigranes
the Armenian with his wife and daughter, and Zosime a wife of King
Tigranes, and Aristobulus King of the Jews, and a wife and five
children of Mithridates, and Scythian women, and also hostages of the
Albani and Iberians and of the King of Commagene, and numerous
trophies, equal in number to all the battles, which Pompeius had won
himself or by his legati. But it was the chief thing towards his
glory, and what had never happened before to any Roman, that he
celebrated his third triumph over the third continent. For though
others before him had triumphed three times, Pompeius by having gained
his first triumph over Libya, his second over Europe, and this the
last over Asia, seemed in a manner to have brought the whole world
into his three triumphs.

XLVI. At this time Pompeius was under four-and-thirty[307] years of
age, as those affirm who in all respects compare him with Alexander
and force a parallel, but in fact he was near forty. How happy would
it have been if he had died at the time up to which he had the fortune
of Alexander; but the period that followed brought to him good fortune
accompanied with odium, and ill fortune that was past all cure. For
the power which he got in the city by fair means, he employed on the
behalf of others illegally; and as much strength as he gave to them,
so much he took from his own reputation, and so he was overthrown by
the strength and magnitude of his own power before he was aware of it.
And as the strongest parts and places in cities, when the enemies have
got possession of them, give to them their own strength, so Cæsar
being raised up through the power of Pompeius against the State,
overthrew and cast down the man by whose help he became strong against
others. And it was brought about thus. Immediately upon Lucullus
returning from Asia, where he had been treated with great contumely by
Pompeius, the Senate gave him a splendid reception, and when Pompeius
had arrived they urged Lucullus still more to take a part in public
affairs, for the purpose of limiting the credit of Pompeius. Though
Lucullus was in other matters now dull and chilled for all active
life, having given himself up to the pleasures of ease and the
enjoyment of wealth, yet he forthwith sprang up against Pompeius, and
by a vigorous attack got a victory over him with respect to the
arrangements of Lucullus that he had annulled, and had the advantage
in the Senate with the co-operation of Cato. Pompeius, defeated and
pressed on all sides, was compelled to fly to tribunes and to attach
himself to young men, of whom the most scandalous and the most daring,
Clodius, took up his cause, but threw him completely under the feet of
the people; and by making him inconsistently with his station
constantly frequent the Forum and carrying him about, he used him for
the purpose of confirming everything that was said or proposed to
please and flatter the people. Further, he asked of Pompeius for his
reward, just as if he were not degrading him but were doing him a
service, and he afterwards got what he asked, the betrayal of
Cicero,[308] who was a friend of Pompeius and had served him in public
matters more than any one else. For when Cicero was in danger and
prayed for his aid, Pompeius would not even see him, but shut the
front door upon those who came on Cicero's part and went out by
another door. Cicero fearing the trial retired from Rome.

XLVII. At this time Cæsar[309] returned from his government and
undertook a political measure, which brought him the greatest
popularity for the present and power for the future, but did the
greatest damage to Pompeius and the State. For he became a candidate
for his first consulship; but seeing that while Crassus was at
variance with Pompeius, if he attached himself to one of them he would
have the other for his enemy, he applied himself to effect a
reconciliation between them, a thing which in other respects was fair
and useful to the State, but was managed by him for a bad reason and
with a dexterity full of treacherous design. For the strength which
kept the State, just as in the case of a vessel, in a condition of
equilibrium and prevented it falling over to this side or that, when
brought together and united caused it to incline to one side with an
irresistible force that overpowered and beat down everything.
Accordingly Cato said that they were mistaken who affirmed that the
State was overturned by the quarrel which afterwards broke out between
Cæsar and Pompeius, for they laid the blame on the last events; for it
was not their disunion nor yet their enmity, but their union and
concord which was the first and greatest misfortune that befel the
State. Cæsar was elected consul, and forthwith he courted the needy
and poor by proposing measures for the establishment of cities, and
the division of lands, wherein he stepped beyond the proprieties of
his office and in a manner made his consulship into a tribunate. When
his colleague Bibulus opposed him and Cato was prepared to support
Bibulus most vigorously, Cæsar brought forward Pompeius on the
Rostra, and put the question to him, "If he approved of the proposed
laws;" upon Pompeius saying that he did, "Will you not then," said
Cæsar, "if any one makes resistance to the laws, come forward before
the people to maintain them?" "Certainly," said Pompeius, "I will come
against those who threaten swords, with sword and shield." It was the
general opinion that Pompeius up to that day had never said or done
anything more arrogant, so that even his friends in his defence said
that the words had escaped him at the moment. But yet it was clear
from what followed that he had completely given himself up to Cæsar to
do what he pleased with him: for contrary to all expectation Pompeius
married Cæsar's daughter Julia, who had been betrothed to Cæpio and
was going to be married to him within a few days; and to pacify Cæpio,
Pompeius gave him his own daughter who was already promised to Faustus
the son of Sulla. Cæsar himself married Calpurnia the daughter of

XLVIII. After this Pompeius filled the city with soldiers and managed
everything by force. For the soldiers suddenly fell on the consul
Bibulus as he was going down to the Forum with Lucullus and Cato, and
broke the fasces; and some one bedaubed Bibulus by throwing a basket
of ordure over his head, and two of the tribunes who were conducting
him were wounded. By these means they cleared the Forum of their
opponents and then carried the law about the distribution of lands.
The people being taken with this bait were now become tame and ready
to support any project of theirs, giving no trouble at all, but
silently voting for what was proposed to them. Accordingly the
regulations of Pompeius as to which he was at variance with Lucullus
were confirmed, and Cæsar received Gaul within and without the Alps
and the province of Illyricum for five years with four complete
legions; and it was settled that the consuls for the next year should
be Piso[310] the father-in-law of Cæsar, and Gabinius, who was the
most extravagant of the flatterers of Pompeius. While this was going
on, Bibulus shut himself up in his house and never went out for eight
months, the remainder of the period of his consulship, but he sent out
counter-edicts full of abuse and charges against both: Cato as if
inspired and under divine influence foretold in the Senate what would
happen to the city and to Pompeius; and Lucullus[311] renouncing
public life kept quiet, on the ground that his age disqualified him
for political concerns, on which Pompeius observed that for an old man
luxury was more unsuitable to his age than to mingle in affairs of
state. However Pompeius himself also was soon rendered inactive
through passion for his young wife, with whom he passed the chief part
of his time, and lived in the country and his gardens, and he paid no
attention to what was going on in the Forum, so that even Clodius, who
was then tribune, despised Pompeius and engaged in the most daring
measures. For after Clodius had ejected Cicero and sent off Cato to
Cyprus[312] under colour of giving him a command, and Cæsar was gone
to Gaul, and Clodius saw that the people were devoted to him as he was
doing everything and framing all his measures to please them, he
immediately attempted to repeal some of the regulations of Pompeius,
and seizing the person of the captive Tigranes he kept him in his own
house, and he instituted prosecutions against the friends of Pompeius,
and so made trial of the power of Pompeius by attacking his friends.
At last when Pompeius came forward upon the occasion of a certain
trial, Clodius having with him a body of men filled with insolence and
arrogance took his station in a conspicuous place and put to them the
following questions: "Who is Imperator unlimited? what man seeks
another man? who scratches his head[313] with one finger?" The people
like a Chorus trained to chant corresponding parts, while Clodius was
shaking his toga,[314] at every question with loud shouts replied,

XLIX. Now this also annoyed Pompeius, who was unaccustomed to be
abused and had no practice in this kind of warfare; but he was still
more vexed when he perceived that the Senate were pleased at the
insults offered to him and at his paying the penalty for his treachery
to Cicero. But when it happened that they came to blows in the Forum
and even proceeded so far as to wound one another, and a slave of
Clodius was detected in the crowd stealing through the bystanders up
to Pomipeius with a dagger in his hand, Pompeius alleging these
proceedings as his excuse, and besides that, being afraid of the
insolence and abuse of Clodius, came no more into the Forum so long as
Clodius was in office, but kept to his house and was planning with his
friends how he could pacify the resentment of the Senate and the
nobles towards him. However he would not listen to Culleo,[315] who
advised him to put away Julia and giving up the friendship of Cæsar to
pass over to the Senate, but he followed the advice of those who
recommended that Cicero[316] should be restored, who was the greatest
enemy of Clodius and most beloved by the Senate. Pompeius with a
strong party accompanied Cicero's brother who was going to make his
entreaty to the people, and after some wounds had been inflicted in
the Forum and some persons were killed, they got the advantage over
Clodius. Cicero returning to the city in pursuance of a law
immediately reconciled Pompeius to the Senate, and, by speaking in
favour of the law relating to grain,[317] in a manner again made
Pompeius master of all the land and sea that the Romans possessed.
For under his control were placed harbours, places of trade, the
disposal of produce, in a word, all the affairs of those who navigated
the sea and cultivated the land. But Clodius complained that the law
had not been made on account of the scarcity of grain, but that the
scarcity of grain was caused in order that the law might be passed,
and that Pompeius might again fan into a flame and recover his power,
which was as it were wasting away through his want of spirit. Others
explained this to have been a device of the consul Spinther, whose
object was to engage Pompeius in a higher official employment, that
himself might be sent out to support king Ptolemæus.[318] However
Canidius the tribune proposed a measure to the effect that Pompeius
without an army and with two lictors should go to bring about a
reconciliation between the Alexandrians and the king. And indeed it
was supposed that Pompeius was not displeased at the measure, but the
Senate rejected it on the specious pretext that they feared for the
safety of Pompeius. There were writings to be found scattered about
the Forum and near the Senate-house, to the effect that Ptolemæus
wished Pompeius to be given to him as general instead of Spinther. And
Timagenes[319] says that Ptolemæus without any reason and without
necessity had quitted Egypt and left it at the advice of Theophanes
who was planning profitable occupation for Pompeius and a subject for
a fresh command. But the villainy of Theophanes does not make this so
probable, as the character of Pompeius makes it improbable, for he had
no ambition of so mean and illiberal a kind.

L. Pompeius being appointed to look after the management and the
supply of corn, sent his deputies and friends to many places, and he
himself sailed to Sicily and Sardinia and Libya and collected grain.
When he was about to set sail, there was a violent wind on the sea,
and the masters of the ships were unwilling to put out, but Pompeius
embarking first and bidding them raise the anchor, cried, "It is
necessary to sail; there is no necessity to live." By such boldness
and zeal, and the help of good fortune, Pompeius filled the markets
with grain and the sea with ships, so that the superfluity of what he
got together sufficed even for those who were without, and there was
as from a spring an abundant overflowing for all.

LI. During this time the Celtic wars[320] raised Cæsar to great
distinction; and though he was considered to be a very long way from
Rome, and to be occupied with Belgæ and Suevi and Britanni, he
contrived, by his skilful management, without being perceived, in the
midst of the popular assemblies, and in the most important matters, to
frustrate the political measures of Pompeius. For Cæsar's military
force was like a body that invested him, and he was training it to
toil, and making it invincible and formidable, not to oppose the
barbarians, but he was disciplining his men in these contests just as
if it were merely hunting wild beasts and pursuing them with dogs; and
in the meantime he was sending to Rome gold and silver, and the rest
of the spoil and wealth which he got in abundance from so many
enemies, and by tempting people there with gifts, and assisting ædiles
in their expenses, and generals and consuls and their wives, he was
gaining over many of them; so that when he had crossed the Alps and
was wintering in Luca, there was a great crowd of men and women who
vied with one another in their eagerness to visit him, besides two
hundred of the Senatorian class, among whom were Pompeius and Crassus;
and one hundred and twenty fasces of proconsuls and prætors were seen
at Cæsar's doors. Now, after filling all the rest with hopes and
money, he sent them off; but a compact was made between him and
Crassus and Pompeius, that they should be candidates for the
consulship, and that Cæsar should help them by sending many of his
soldiers to vote, and that as soon as they were elected, they should
secure for themselves the command of provinces and armies, and should
confirm Cæsar's provinces to him for another five years. Upon this
being publicly known, the first men in the State were displeased, and
Marcellinus coming forward before the popular assembly, asked both
Crassus and Pompeius to their faces, if they would be candidates for
the consulship. The assembly bade them give him an answer, on which
Pompeius spoke first, and said, that perhaps he should and perhaps he
should not. Crassus replied in a manner more befitting a citizen,[321]
for he said that he would act either way, as he should think it best
for the common weal. But when Marcellinus stuck close to Pompeius, and
was considered to be speaking in violent terms, Pompeius said that
Marcellinus, of all men, showed the least regard to fair dealing,
because he was not grateful to him in that he was the means of
Marcellinus becoming eloquent, though he was formerly mute, and of now
being so full as to vomit, though formerly he was starving of hunger.

LII. However, though everybody else declined to become candidates for
the consulship, Cato persuaded Lucius Domitius,[322] and encouraged
him not to give up, for he said the contest with the tyrants was not
for power, but for liberty. But Pompeius and his partisans fearing the
vigour of Cato, and lest, as he had all the Senate on his side, he
should draw away and change the minds of the sounder part of the
people, would not allow Domitius to come down into the Forum, but they
sent armed men and killed the linkbearer, who was advancing in front,
and put the rest to flight. Cato was the last to retreat, after being
wounded in the right arm while he was fighting in front of Domitius.
By such means they attained the consulship, nor did they conduct
themselves in it with more decency. First of all, while the people
were electing Cato prætor and giving their votes, Pompeius broke up
the assembly, alleging that the omens were not favourable; and they
had Vatinius[323] proclaimed in place of Cato by bribing the tribes.
In the next place they introduced measures by means of Trebonius,[324]
which gave to Cæsar, pursuant to the agreement, a second five years,
to Crassus[325] Syria and the Parthian expedition, but to Pompeius all
Libya, and both the provinces of Iberia and four legions, of which he
lent two to Cæsar at his request for the war in Gaul. Now Crassus went
out to his province, after giving up his consular functions; and
Pompeius opened his theatre,[326] and gave gymnastic and musical
contests at the dedication of it, and fights of wild beasts, in which
five hundred lions were killed; and at the end he exhibited an
elephant-fight, a most astonishing spectacle.

LIII. For all this Pompeius got admiration and love; but on the other
hand he brought on himself no less odium by giving up the forces and
the provinces to legati who were his friends, while himself in the
places of amusement in Italy going about from one to another spent his
time with his wife, either because he loved her, or because he could
not bear to leave his wife who was attached to him; for this also is
said. And the love of the young woman for her husband was much talked
about, for her affection towards Pompeius was not what might have been
expected considering his age; but the reason appears to have been the
chaste conduct of her husband who knew only his married wife, and the
dignity of his manners which were not austere but agreeable and
particularly attractive to women, if we must not disbelieve the
testimony even of Flora the courtezan. It happened that at the
election of ædiles some men came to blows and no small number were
killed near Pompeius, and as his garments were drenched with blood, he
changed them. There was great confusion and hurrying to the house of
the slaves who were carrying the vests; and it happened that
Julia,[327] who was with child, saw the bloody toga, upon which she
fainted and with difficulty recovered, and in consequence of that
alarm and the excitement, she miscarried. Even those who found most
fault with the alliance of Cæsar and Pompeius, could not blame the
woman for her affection. She became pregnant a second time and brought
forth a female child, but she died of the pains of labour and the
child did not survive her many days. Pompeius made preparations to
bury her in his Alban villa, but the people by force took the body and
carried it down into the Field of Mars, more from pity for the young
woman than to please Pompeius and Cæsar. But of the two, it was
considered that the people gave a larger portion of the honour to
Cæsar who was absent than to Pompeius who was present. But in the city
the waves forthwith began to move and everything was tossed to and
fro, and was the subject of conversation tending to a complete split,
now that the marriage connection was ended which hitherto rather
veiled than checked the ambition of the two men. After no long time
news also arrived that Crassus had lost his life among the Parthians;
and that which had been a great hindrance to the civil war breaking
out was now removed, for both Cæsar and Pompeius feared Crassus, and
accordingly to some extent confined themselves within limits in their
behaviour towards one another. But when fortune had cut off the man
who was keeping a watch over the struggle, forthwith the words of the
comic poet became applicable:

    "Now each against the other smears his limbs,
    And strews his hands with dust."

So small a thing is fortune in comparison with men's nature. For
fortune cannot satisfy men's desires, since so great an amount of
command and extent of wide-stretched territory put no check on the
desires of two men, but though they heard and read that "all
things[328] were divided into three portions for the gods and each got
his share of dominion," they thought the Roman empire was not enough
for them who were only two.

LIV. Yet Pompeius once said when he was addressing the people, that
he had obtained every office sooner than he expected, and laid it down
sooner than was expected. And in truth he had the disbandings of his
forces a perpetual testimony of the truth of what he said. But now
being convinced that Cæsar would not give up his power, he sought by
means of the functionaries of the state to strengthen himself against
him, but he attempted no change of any kind and did not wish to be
considered to distrust Cæsar, but to disregard him rather and to
despise him. However when he saw that the officers were not disposed
of according to his judgment, the citizens being bribed, he allowed
anarchy to spring up in the state; and forthwith there was much talk
about a dictator, whom Lucilius the tribune first ventured to mention
by advising the people to choose Pompeius dictator. Cato attacked him
for this, and Lucilius ran the risk of losing his tribunate, and many
of the friends of Pompeius came forward to exculpate him and said that
he did not seek that office or wish for it. Upon this Cato commended
Pompeius and exhorted him to turn his attention to the establishment
of order, and Pompeius then out of shame did turn his attention to it,
and Domitius[329] and Messala were made consuls; but afterwards there
was again anarchy, and a greater number of persons now began to
agitate the question of a dictator more boldly, and Cato and his
partisans fearing that they should be forced to yield, determined to
let Pompeius have a certain legalized authority for the purpose of
diverting him from that pure tyrannical office. Bibulus, who was an
enemy of Pompeius, was the first to propose in the Senate to choose
Pompeius sole consul[330] and he said that the city would thus either
be relieved from the present disorder, or they would be slaves to the
best man among them. This opinion appeared strange from such a person,
when Cato rising for the purpose as it was expected of speaking
against Bibulus, as soon as there was silence, said that for his part
he would not have introduced the proposed measure, but as it was
introduced by another he advised that it should be adopted, for he
preferred any government to no government, and he thought that nobody
would administer affairs better than Pompeius at a time of such
disorder. The Senate accepted the proposal and passed a decree that
Pompeius if elected should be solo consul, and that if he wanted a
colleague, he might choose any person whom he approved of, but not
before two months had elapsed; and Pompeius being made consul on these
terms and declared by Sulpicius the Interrex, addressed Cato in a
friendly manner, admitting his great obligations to him and urging him
to give him his advice as a private man in the discharge of his
office. But Cato would not admit that Pompeius was under any
obligations to him, for he had said nothing that he did say out of
regard to him, but out of regard to the state: he added that he would
give him his advice if he were privately applied to; and if Pompeius
did not invite him, he would publicly tell him his opinion. Such was
Cato in everything.

LV. After entering the city, Pompeius married Cornelia,[331] a
daughter of Metellus Scipio, who was not a virgin, but had lately been
left a widow by Publius, the son of Crassus, who had lost his life
among the Parthians, and whose virgin bride she was. The young woman
possessed many charms besides her youthful beauty, for she was well
instructed in letters, in playing on the lyre, and in geometry, and
she had been accustomed to listen to philosophical discourses with
profit. In addition to this she had a disposition free from all
affectation and pedantic display, faults which such acquirements
generally breed in women: her father also, both in respect to family
and reputation, was above all imputation. Still the marriage did not
please some people on account of the disparity of years; for the youth
of Cornelia made her a fitter match for a son of Pompeius. But those
who were more judicious considered that Pompeius had overlooked the
state, which was in an unfortunate condition, to cure which the state
had selected him for her physician, and put herself solely in his
hands; and he was wearing chaplets and celebrating a marriage, when he
ought to have considered his consulship a calamity, as it would not
have been conferred on him so contrary to all constitutional practice,
if his country were in a prosperous condition. However, he presided at
the trials for corruption and bribery,[332] and drew up laws, pursuant
to which the trials were conducted, and with the exception presently
to be mentioned, he conducted all the proceedings with dignity and
fairness, and he secured to the courts safety, order, and quiet, by
taking his own place there with armed men; but when his father-in-law
Scipio was under trial, he sent for the three hundred and sixty
judices to his house and obtained their support for him, and the
accuser gave up the prosecution when he saw Scipio conducted from the
Forum by the judices.[333] This brought Pompeius again into bad
report, which was still further increased when he came forward to
speak in praise of Plancus,[334] though he had by special law put an
end to encomiums on persons under trial. Cato, who happened to be one
of the judices, stopped his ears with his hands, saying it was not
right in him to listen to the encomiums which were contrary to law. In
consequence of this Cato was rejected before the votes were given, but
Plancus was convicted by the votes of the rest and to the shame of
Pompeius. Now, a few days after, Hypsæus,[335] a consular man, who was
under prosecution, watched for Pompeius as he was going to sup after
taking the bath, and clasping his knees, suppliantly entreated him;
but Pompeius passed by contemptuously, saying that Hypsæus was
spoiling his supper, and doing nothing more. By showing himself thus
partial he got blame. However, in every other respect he established
good order, and took his father-in-law as his colleague for the
remaining five months. A decree also was made that he should hold the
provinces for another four years, and should receive yearly a thousand
talents, out of which he was to feed and maintain his troops.

LVI. Cæsar's friends taking advantage of this, claimed some notice for
Cæsar also, who was fighting so many battles for the supremacy of
Rome; they said that he deserved either another consulship, or to have
a fresh period added to his command, during which no other should
supersede him and carry off the glory due to his labours, but that he
who had accomplished those things should hold the command and quietly
enjoy the honour. A debate arose on those subjects, on which Pompeius,
affecting to deprecate the odium against Cæsar out of regard to him,
said that he had letters of Cæsar, who was willing to have a
successor and to be relieved from service, but still Cæsar thought it
fair that he should be allowed to be a candidate for the consulship
though he was not at Rome. To this Cato made opposition, and said that
Cæsar ought to become a private person and lay down his arms, and then
get any favour that he could from the citizens; and when Pompeius did
not prosecute the debate, but submitted as if he were worsted, his
real opinions about Cæsar became more suspected. He also sent to Cæsar
and demanded back the troops[336] which he had lent him, pretending
that he wanted them for the Parthian war. But Cæsar, though he knew
why he was required to give up the troops, sent them back after
handsomely rewarding them.

LVII. After this Pompeius had a dangerous illness at Neapolis, from
which he recovered. Upon the suggestion of Praxagoras, the people of
Neapolis offered sacrifices for his restoration to health. The
neighbouring people followed their example, and the thing thus going
the round of Italy, every city, small and great, celebrated a festival
for several days. No place was large enough to contain the people, who
flocked together from all parts, but the roads were filled and the
villages and ports with the people rejoicing and sacrificing. Many
persons also with chaplets on their heads and lighted torches received
Pompeius, and accompanied him throwing flowers over him, so that his
journey and progress was a most beautiful sight and very splendid.
However, it is said that this circumstance contributed to bring about
the war as much as anything else. For an arrogant feeling entered the
mind of Pompeius, and, with the greatness of the rejoicing, carried
off all reflection on the present state of affairs; and throwing away
the caution which had always secured his good fortune and his
measures, he fell into a state of such unmingled confidence and
contempt of Cæsar's power, as to suppose that he would require neither
arms to oppose him nor any troublesome preparation, but that he could
put him down much easier than he had raised him. Besides this, Appius
came from Gaul with the troops which Pompeius had lent to Cæsar; and
he greatly disparaged Cæsar's exploits there, and uttered much abuse
against Cæsar; and he said that Pompeius did not know his own power
and reputation, if he intended to strengthen himself against Cæsar by
other troops, for that he could put down Cæsar with Cæsar's own
troops, as soon as he made his appearance; so great, as he said, was
their hatred of Cæsar and their affection towards Pompeius.
Accordingly Pompeius was so much elated, and through his confidence
filled with such contempt, that he even ridiculed those who were
afraid of the war; and to those who said that, if Cæsar advanced
against the city, they saw no troops sufficient to repulse him, with
smiling countenance and tranquil mien he bade them give themselves no
trouble about that, "for in whatever part of Italy," he said, "I stamp
the earth with my foot, there will spring up forces both men and

LVIII. And now Cæsar also stuck to public affairs more vigorously,
himself keeping at no great distance from Italy, and continually
sending his soldiers to the city to attend the elections, and with
money insinuating himself into the favour of many of the magistrates
and corrupting them; among whom was Paulus[337] the consul who changed
sides for fifteen hundred talents, and Curio[338] the tribune who was
released by Cæsar from countless debts, and Marcus Antonius who
through friendship for Curio was involved in his obligations. Now it
was said that one of the centurions who had come from Cæsar, while
standing near the Senate-house and hearing that the Senate were
refusing to allow Cæsar a prolongation of his term of government, said
as he struck his hand on his sword, "But this will give it." And all
that was doing and preparing had this design in view. Yet the claims
and reasons urged by Curio in favour of Cæsar were of a more
constitutional character. For he asked one of two things, either that
they should require Pompeius also to give up his force, or they should
not take Cæsar's troops from him: he said, "Whether they become
private persons on fair terms or continued a match for one another by
each keeping what he had, they would remain quiet; but he who proposed
to weaken one of them would double the power which he feared." Upon
this Marcellus the consul called Cæsar a robber, and urged the Senate
to vote him an enemy, if he should not lay down his arms. Yet Curio
with the assistance of Antonius and Piso, prevailed so far as to have
it put to a regular vote. Accordingly he proposed that those senators
should move off to one side who were in favour of Cæsar alone laying
down his arms and Pompeius remaining in command; and the majority went
over to that side. Again, upon his proposing that all should withdraw
who were of opinion that both should lay down their arms and that
neither should hold a command, only two-and-twenty were in favour of
Pompeius, and all the rest were on the side of Curio. Curio
considering that he had gained his point, rushed forth to the people
exulting with delight, and the people received him with clapping of
hands and threw on him chaplets and flowers. Pompeius was not in the
Senate, for those who are in command of an army do not enter the city.
But Marcellus rose up and said that he would not sit still to listen
to words, but that as he spied ten legions already appearing in sight
above the Alps and on their march, he also would dispatch a man to
oppose them and to defend their country.

LIX. Upon this they changed their garments as was usual in a public
calamity. Marcellus[339] advanced to Pompeius through the Forum with
the Senate following him, and standing in front of him said, "I bid
you, Pompeius, defend your country and employ the forces that are in
readiness and raise others." Lentulus also said the same, who was one
of the consuls elect for the coming year. But when Pompeius began to
raise recruits, some refused and a few came together tardily and
without any readiness, but the greater part cried out that some terms
should be come to. For Antonius in spite of the Senate had read a
letter of Cæsar to the people which contained proposals likely to
conciliate the mass; for Cæsar proposed that both he and Pompeius
should give up their provinces and dismiss their troops, and so put
themselves in the hande of the people and render an account of what
they had done. Lentulus who was now consul would not assemble the
Senate; but Cicero who had just returned from Cilicia[340] attempted
an amicable settlement on the terms, that Cæsar should quit Gaul and
give up all his army except two legions with which he should hold
Illyricum and wait for his second consulship. As Pompeius was
dissatisfied with this, the friends of Cæsar so far yielded as to
agree that Cæsar should dismiss one of these two legions; but as
Lentulus made opposition and Cato called out that Pompeius was
blundering again if he allowed himself to be deceived, the attempt at
a settlement came to no conclusion.

LX. In the mean time intelligence arrived that Cæsar had taken
Ariminum,[341] a large city of Italy, and was marching straight upon
Rome with all his force. But this was false; for he was advancing with
only three hundred horsemen and five thousand legionary soldiers, and
he did not wait for the rest of his force which was beyond the Alps,
choosing to fall upon his enemies when they were in confusion and did
not expect him, rather than to give them time to prepare to fight with
him. Upon reaching the river Rubico, which was the boundary of his
province, he stood in silence and lingered, reflecting, as we may
presume, on the magnitude of the risk. Then, like those who throw
themselves into a huge abyss from a precipice, closing the eyes of
calculation and wrapping himself up to meet the danger, he called out
in Greek to those who were present these words only, "Let the die be
cast," and took his army over. As soon as the report reached Rome, and
tumult and fear, such as were never known before, together with
consternation filled the city, the Senate immediately hurried in a
body to visit Pompeius, and the magistrates with them; but upon
Tullus[342] asking about an army and force, and Pompeius after some
delay saying in a tone of no great confidence, that he had the men in
readiness who had come from Cæsar, and he thought he should soon be
able to get together those who had been before enrolled to the number
of thirty thousand, Tullus cried aloud, "You have deceived us,
Pompeius," and he advised to send commissioners to Cæsar. One
Favonius,[343] in other respects no bad man, but who with his
self-will and insolence often supposed that he was imitating the bold
language of Cato, bade Pompeius strike the ground with his foot and
call up the troops which he promised. Pompeius mildly submitted to
this ill-timed sarcasm; and when Cato reminded him of what he had
originally predicted to him about Cæsar, Pompeius replied that what
Cato had said was in truth more prophetic, but what he had done was of
a more friendly character.

LXI. Cato advised that Pompeius should be appointed general Imperator,
adding, that it was the business of those who caused great mischief to
put an end to it. Cato immediately left the city for Sicily, for he
had obtained that island as his province; and of the rest each went to
the province which had been assigned to him by lot. But as nearly all
Italy was in commotion, the events that happened caused much
perplexity; for those who were out of Rome hurried from all parts and
crowded into the city, and the inhabitants of Rome hastened to leave
the city, which in such tempest and confusion was weak in available
means, but strong in insubordination and the difficulty that it caused
to the magistrates. For it was not possible to allay the fear, nor did
any one allow Pompeius to follow his own judgment, but in whatever way
a man was affected, whether by fear, grief or perplexity, he carried
it to Pompeius and filled him with it; and opposite measures prevailed
in the same day, and it was impossible for Pompeius to get any true
intelligence about the enemy, because there were many who reported
anything that they chanced to hear, and were vexed if he did not
believe them. Under these circumstances after declaring by an edict
that he saw nothing but confusion, and bidding all the senators follow
him, and giving notice that he should consider all who stayed behind
as partisans of Cæsar, he left the city late in the evening; and the
consuls fled without even making the sacrifices which were usual
before wars. But even in the midst of danger Pompeius was fortunate in
the general affection of the people, for though many blamed the
generalship, there was not one who hated the general, but one might
have found that those who were not willing to leave Pompeius were more
numerous than those who left the city for the cause of liberty.

LXII. A few davs after, Cæsar entered and took possession of
Rome.[344] He behaved with moderation to all and pacified everybody,
except Metellus[345] one of the tribunes who attempted to hinder him
from taking money out of the treasury, on which Cæsar threatened him
with death and added to his threat still harsher words, for he said,
That to say this was harder for him than to do it. Having thus put
Metellus to flight and taken what he wanted, Cæsar pursued Pompeius,
being anxious to drive him out of Italy before his troops from Iberia
arrived. Pompeius who had got possession of Brundisium and had plenty
of ships, immediately put on board the consuls and with them thirty
cohorts and sent them over before him to Dyrrachium: Scipio his
father-in-law and his own son Cneius he sent to Syria to get a fleet
ready. After barricading the gates and placing on the walls the
soldiers who were most lightly armed, he ordered the people of
Brundisium[346] to keep quiet in their houses, and he then broke up
all the ground in the city and intersected it with ditches, and filled
up all the streets with stakes except two through which he went down
to the sea. On the third day he had already embarked at his leisure
all the troops with the exception of those who were guarding the
walls, to whom he suddenly gave a signal, upon which they all ran down
quickly and being taken on board got out to sea. When Cæsar saw the
walls deserted, he concluded that the enemy were making off, and in
his pursuit of them he narrowly escaped getting involved among the
stakes and trenches; but as the people of Brundisium gave him warning,
he avoided the city and, making a circuit round it, he found that all
had got under sail, except two vessels which contained only a few

LXIII. Now everybody else reckons the sailing away of Pompeius among
the best military stratagems, but Cæsar[347] wondered that Pompeius,
who was in possession of a strong city and was expecting his troops
from Iberia and was master of the sea, should desert and abandon
Italy. Cicero[348] also blames Pompeius for imitating the generalship
of Themistokles rather than that of Perikles, the circumstances being
like those of Perikles and not those of Themistokles. And Cæsar showed
by what he did that he was greatly afraid of time:[349] for when he
had taken prisoner Numerius, a friend of Pompeius, he sent him to
Brundisium with instructions to bring about a reconciliation on fair
terms; but Numerius sailed off with Pompeius. Upon this Cæsar, who in
sixty days had become master of Italy without shedding any blood, was
desirous of pursuing Pompeius immediately, but as he had no vessels,
he turned about and marched to Iberia with the design of gaining over
the troops there.

LXIV. During this time Pompeius got together a great force: his naval
power was completely irresistible, for the fighting ships were five
hundred, and the number of Liburnian vessels[350] and other small
craft was immense; the cavalry, the flower of the Romans and Italians,
was seven thousand, distinguished by family, and wealth and courage;
his infantry, which was a mixed body and required discipline, he
exercised in Berœa,[351] not sitting still lazily, but practising
himself in gymnastic exercises[352] as if he were still in the vigour
of his age. And it was a great motive to confidence, when men saw
Pompeius Magnus, who was now sixty years of age save two, exercising
himself among the infantry under arms, then mounting his horse and
drawing his sword without any trouble while his horse was galloping
and easily sheathing it again; and in the throwing of his spear
showing not only an exactness of aim, but a strength of arm in the
distance to which he sent it, which many of the young men could not
surpass. Both kings of nations and governors came to him; and of the
men of rank about him from Rome there were sufficient to make up a
complete Senate.[353] There came also Labeo,[354] who left Cæsar
though he had been his friend and had served with him in Gaul; and
Brutus,[355] son of the Brutus who was put to death in Gaul, a man of
noble spirit who had never yet spoken to Pompeius or saluted him
because Pompeius had put his father to death, but now he took service
under him as the liberator of Rome. Cicero,[356] though he had both in
his writings and his speeches in the Senate recommended other
measures, was ashamed not to join those who were fighting in defence
of their country. There came also to Macedonia Tidius Sextius,[357] a
man of extreme old age, lame of one leg; and while others were
laughing and jeering, Pompeius on seeing him rose up and ran to meet
him, for he considered it a great testimony for men of advanced age
and feeble strength to choose danger with him in preference to safety.

LXV. A Senate being formed, upon the proposition of Cato they came to
a resolution to put no Roman to death except in battle, and not to
plunder any city that was subject to the Romans, which increased still
further the popularity of the party of Pompeius; for those who were
unconcerned about the war by reason of being far removed from it or
who were disregarded on account of their weakness, gave Pompeius the
benefit of their good wishes at least, and as far as words could go
contended on his behalf in favour of the right, considering every man
an enemy to gods and to men who did not wish Pompeius to be
victorious. Cæsar also showed much moderation in his success, for
after he had captured and defeated the forces of Pompeius in
Iberia,[358] he let the generals go and employed the troops. After
crossing the Alps again and hurrying through Italy, he arrived at
Brundisium about the winter solstice. He then crossed the sea and
putting in at Oricum sent Jubius,[359] a friend of Pompeius, who was
his prisoner, to Pompeius[360] to propose that they should both meet
together on the third day, disband all their forces, and after being
reconciled and confirming their union by oath, return to Italy.
Pompeius again considered this to be an ambuscade, and hastily going
down to the sea he took possession of the posts and places which
presented very strong positions for an army; he also seized the naval
stations and landing places which were favourable for those who came
by sea, so that every wind which blew brought to Pompeius corn or
troops or money; but Cæsar being confined in straits both on the sea
and land side was of necessity glad to fight, and he attacked the
lines of Pompeius and continually provoked him to battle, in which
Cæsar had generally the advantage and the superiority in the
skirmishing. But on one occasion he narrowly escaped being completely
crushed and losing his army, for Pompeius fought with great courage
and routed all the enemy, who lost two thousand men; but he was
either unable or was afraid to force his way into Cæsar's camp and to
enter with the fugitives, which made Cæsar say to his friends, "To-day
the victory would have been with the enemy, if they had had a
commander who knew how to conquer."

LXVI. The partisans of Pompeius being greatly elated at this success
were eager to have a decisive battle. Pompeius wrote to the distant
kings and generals and cities to inform them that he was victorious,
but he feared the risk of a battle, thinking that by delay and
reducing the enemy to straits he should finally vanquish men who were
invincible in arms and had long been accustomed to conquer together,
but as to the other military duties, and marches, and change of
position, and digging of trenches and building of walls, were not
efficient by reason of age and on this account were eager to come to
close fighting and to engage hand to hand. However, previous to the
last contest Pompeius had been able in some degree to draw his men
from their purpose by persuading them to keep quiet; but when Cæsar
after the battle was compelled by want of provisions to break up his
camp, and began his march into Thessaly through the country of the
Athamanes,[361] the confidence of the soldiers of Pompeius could no
longer be kept in check, and calling out that Cæsar was flying, some
were for following and pursuing him, and others for crossing over into
Italy, and others were sending to Rome their slaves and friends to get
possession of houses near the Forum, with the intention of forthwith
becoming candidates for office. Many of their own accord sailed to
Cornelia who was in Lesbos bearing the good tidings of the war being
at an end; for Pompeius had sent her there out of the way of danger.
The Senate being assembled, Afranius gave his opinion that they should
stick to Italy, for Italy was the chief prize of the war, and would
bring to those who were masters of it the possession of Sicily,
Sardinia, Corsica, Iberia, and all Gaul; and as to that which was the
greatest concern to Pompeius, his native country who was stretching
out her hands only at a short distance from them, it was not
honourable to leave her to be insulted and enslaved by slaves and
flatterers of tyrants. But Pompeius did not consider it to be
consistent with his reputation to run away from Cæsar a second time
and to be pursued, when fortune gave him the opportunity of being the
pursuer, nor did he think it consistent with his duty to desert
Scipio[362] and the consular men in Hellas and Thessaly who would
immediately fall into Cæsar's hands with their military chests and
large forces; he thought also that Rome was best cared for by fighting
in her defence as far from her as possible, that she might wait for
the conqueror without feeling or hearing of any misfortunes.

LXVII. Having come to this decision, Pompeius pursued Cæsar, resolved
to avoid a battle, but by following close up to hem him in and wear
him out by privation. He had other reasons for thinking this to be the
best plan, and it also reached his ears that it was a subject of
common conversation among the cavalry that they ought to defeat Cæsar
as soon as they could and then put down Pompeius also. Some say that
this was also the reason why Pompeius employed Cato[363] in no matter
of importance, but even when he was marching against Cæsar left him on
the coast to look after the stores, through fear that if Cæsar were
destroyed, Cato might forthwith compel him also to lay down his
command. Accordingly as he followed the enemy leisurely he was much
censured and there was a clamour against him, that his object was not
to defeat Cæsar by his generalship, but his native country and the
Senate, that he might always keep the command and never give over
having as his attendants and guards those who considered themselves
the masters of the world. Domitius Ahenobarbus also by always calling
him Agamemnon and King of Kings made him odious. Favonius too made
himself no less disagreeable by his scoffing manner than others by the
unseasonable freedom of their language, calling out, "Men, we shall
not eat figs in Tusculum[364] even this year!" Lucius Afranius who had
lost his forces in Iberia and on that account had fallen under the
imputation of treachery, now seeing that Pompeius avoided a battle,
said he was surprised that those who accused him did not advance and
fight against the trafficker in provinces. By these and like
expressions often repeated they at last prevailed over Pompeius, a man
who was a slave to public fame and the opinion of his friends, and
drew him on to follow their own hopes and impetuosity and to give up
the best considered plans, a thing which would have been unbefitting
even in the master of a vessel, to say nothing of the
commander-in-chief of so many nations and forces. Pompeius approved of
the physician who never gratifies the desires of his patients, and yet
he yielded to military advisers who were in a diseased state, through
fear of offending if he adopted healing measures. And how can one say
those men were in a healthy state, some of whom were going about among
the troops and already canvassing for consulships and prætorships, and
Spinther and Domitius[365] and Scipio were disputing and quarrelling
about the priesthood of Cæsar and canvassing, just as if Tigranes the
Armenian were encamped by them or the King of the Nabathæans, and not
that Cæsar and that force with which he had taken a thousand cities by
storm, and subdued above three hundred nations, and had fought with
Germans and Gauls unvanquished in more battles than could be counted,
and had taken a hundred times ten thousand prisoners, and had
slaughtered as many after routing them in pitched battles.

LXVIII. However, by importunity and agitation, after the army had
descended into the plain of Pharsalus,[366] they compelled Pompeius to
hold a council of war, in which Labienus, who was commander of the
cavalry, got up first, and swore that he would not leave the battle
till he had routed the enemy; and they all swore to the same effect.
In the night Pompeius dreamed that as he was entering the theatre, the
people clapped, and that he was decorating a temple of Venus the
Victorious[367] with many spoils. And in some respects he was
encouraged, but in others rather depressed by the dream, lest fame and
glory should accrue from him to the race of Cæsar, which traced its
descent from Venus; and certain panic alarms which were rushing
through the camp aroused him. In the morning-watch a bright light[368]
shone forth above the camp of Cæsar, which was in a state of profound
tranquillity, and a flame-like torch springing from this light
descended upon the camp of Pompeius; and Cæsar himself says that he
witnessed this as he was visiting the watches. At daybreak, as Cæsar
was going to move to Scotussa,[369] and the soldiers were engaged in
taking down the tents and sending forward the beasts and
camp-followers, the scouts came with intelligence that they spied many
arms in the enemy's encampment moving backwards and forwards, and that
there was a movement and noise as of men coming out to battle. After
them others came announcing that the vanguard was already putting
itself in battle order. Upon this, Cæsar observing that the expected
day had arrived on which they would have to fight against men, and not
against hunger and poverty, quickly gave orders to hang out in front
of his tent the purple colours,[370] which is the signal for battle
among the Romans. The soldiers at the sight of it left their tents
with loud shouts and rejoicing and hurried to arms; as the centurions
led them to their several ranks, every man, just as if he belonged to
a chorus, without confusion, being well trained, quietly took his

LXIX. Pompeius commanded the right wing, intending to oppose Antonius;
in the centre he placed his father-in-law Scipio against Calvinus
Lucius;[371] and the left was commanded by Lucius Domitius, and
strengthened with the main body of the cavalry. For nearly all the
horsemen had crowded to that point, with the design of overpowering
Cæsar and cutting to pieces the tenth legion, which had a very great
reputation for courage, and Cæsar was accustomed to take his station
in this legion when he fought a battle. But Cæsar, observing that the
enemy's left wing was strengthened by so large a body of cavalry, and
fearing their brilliant equipment, summoned six cohorts from the
reserve, and placed them in the rear of the tenth legion, with orders
to keep quiet and not let the enemy see them; but as soon as the
cavalry advanced, they had orders to run forwards through the first
ranks, and not to throw their javelins, as the bravest soldiers are
used to do in their eagerness to get to fighting with the sword, but
to push upwards and to wound the eyes and faces of the enemy, for
those handsome, blooming pyrrichists would not keep their ground for
fear of their beauty being spoiled, nor would they venture to look at
the iron that was pushed right into their faces. Now Cæsar was thus
employed. But Pompeius, who was examining the order of battle from his
horse, observing that the enemy were quietly awaiting in their ranks
the moment of attack, and the greater part of his own army was not
still, but was in wavelike motion through want of experience and in
confusion, was alarmed lest his troops should be completely separated
at the beginning of the battle, and he commanded the front ranks to
stand with their spears presented, and keeping their ground in compact
order to receive the enemy's attack. But Cæsar finds fault[372] with
this generalship of Pompeius; for he says that he thus weakened the
force of the blows which a rapid assault produces; and the rush to
meet the advancing ranks, which more than anything else fills the mass
of the soldiers with enthusiasm and impetuosity in closing with the
enemy, and combined with the shouts and running increases the
courage--Pompeius, by depriving his men of this, fixed them to the
ground and damped them. On Cæsar's side the numbers were twenty-two
thousand; on the side of Pompeius the numbers[373] were somewhat more
than double.

LXX.[374] And now, when the signal was given on both sides, and the
trumpet was beginning to urge them on to the conflict, every man of
this great mass was busy in looking after himself; but a few of the
Romans, the best, and some Greeks who were present, and not engaged in
the battle, as the conflict drew near, began to reflect to what a
condition ambition and rivalry had brought the Roman State. For
kindred arms and brotherly battalions and common standards,[375] and
the manhood and the might of a single state in such numbers, were
closing in battle, self-matched against self, an example of the
blindness of human nature and its madness, under the influence of
passion. For if they had now been satisfied quietly to govern and
enjoy what they had got, there was the largest and the best portion of
the earth and of the sea subject to them; and if they still wished to
gratify their love of trophies and of triumphs, and their thirst for
them, they might have their fill of Parthian or German wars. Scythia,
too, and the Indians were a labour in reserve, and ambition had a
reasonable pretext for such undertaking, the civilization of barbaric
nations. And what Scythian horse, or Parthian arrows, or Indian wealth
could have checked seventy thousand Romans advancing in arms under
Pompeius and Cæsar, whose name these nations heard of long before they
heard of the name of Rome? Such unsociable, and various, and savage
nations had they invaded and conquered. But now they engaged with one
another in battle, without even feeling any compunction about their
own glory, for which they spared not their native country, up to this
day having always borne the name of invincible. For the relationship
that had been made between them, and the charms of Julia, and that
marriage, were from the very first only deceitful and suspected
pledges of an alliance formed from interested motives, in which there
was not a particle of true friendship.

LXXI. Now when the plain of Pharsalus was filled with men and horses
and arms, and the signal for battle was raised on both sides, the
first to spring forward from the line of Cæsar was Caius
Crassianus[376] a centurion who had the command of one hundred and
twenty men, and was now fulfilling a great promise to Cæsar. For as
Cæsar observed him to be the first that was quitting the camp, he
spoke to him and asked what he thought of the battle; and Crassianus
stretching out his right hand replied with a loud voice, "You shall
have a splendid victory, Cæsar; and as to me, you shall praise me
whether I survive the day or die." Remembering what he had said, he
rushed forward and carrying many along with him fell on the centre of
the enemy. The struggle was forthwith with the sword and many fell;
but while Crassianus was pushing forwards and cutting down those who
were in the front ranks, a soldier made a stand against him and drove
his sword through his mouth so that the point came out at the back of
the neck. When Crassianus had fallen, the battle was equally contested
in this part of the field. Now Pompeius did not quickly lead on the
right wing, but was looking at the opposite wing and lost time in
waiting for the cavalry to get into action. The cavalry were now
extending their companies with the view of surrounding Cæsar, and they
drove Cæsar's cavalry who were few in number upon the line in front of
which they were stationed. But upon Cæsar giving the signal, the
cavalry retired, and the cohorts which had been reserved to meet the
enemy's attempt to outflank them, rushed forward, three thousand in
number, and met the enemy; then fixing themselves by the side of the
horsemen, they pushed their spears upwards, as they had been
instructed, against the horses, aiming at the faces of the riders. The
horsemen, who were altogether inexperienced in fighting, and had never
expected or heard of such a mode of attack, did not venture to stand
or endure the blows aimed at their eyes and mouths, but turning their
backs and holding their hands before their faces they ingloriously
took to flight. The soldiers of Cæsar leaving these fugitives to
escape advanced against the infantry, and they made their attack at
that point where the wing having lost the protection of the cavalry
gave them the opportunity of outflanking and surrounding them. These
men falling on the enemy in the flank and the tenth legion attacking
them in front, the enemy did not stand their ground nor keep together,
for they saw that while they were expecting to surround the enemy,
they were themselves surrounded.

LXXII. After the infantry were routed, and Pompeius seeing the dust
conjectured what had befallen the cavalry, what reflections passed in
his mind, it is difficult to say; but like a madman more than anything
else and one whose reason was affected, without considering that he
was Magnus Pompeius, without speaking a word to any one, he walked
slowly back to his camp, so that one may properly apply to him the

    "But lofty father Zeus struck fear in Ajax;
    He stood confounded, and behind him threw
    His shield of seven-ox-hide, and trembling look'd
    Towards the crowd."

In this state Pompeius came to his tent and sat down without speaking,
until many of the pursuers rushed into the camp with the fugitives;
and then merely uttering these words, "What, even to the camp!" and
nothing more, he rose and taking a dress suitable to his present
condition made his way out. The rest of the legions also fled, and
there was great slaughter in the camp of those who were left to guard
the tents and of the slaves; but Asinius Pollio[378] says that only
six thousand soldiers fell, and Pollio fought in that battle on
Cæsar's side. When Cæsar's men took the camp, they saw evidence of the
folly and frivolity of the enemy. For every tent was crowned with
myrtle and furnished with flowered coverings to the couches and tables
loaded with cups; and bowls of wine were laid out, and there was the
preparation and decoration of persons who had performed a sacrifice
and were celebrating a festival,[379] rather than of men who were
arming for battle. So blinded by their hopes, and so full of foolish
confidence did they come out to war.

LXXIII. Pompeius having proceeded a little way from the camp let his
horse go, and with very few persons about him, went on slowly as no
one pursued him, and with such thoughts, as would naturally arise in
the mind of a man who for four-and-thirty years had been accustomed to
conquer and to have the mastery in everything, and now for the first
time in his old age experienced what defeat and flight were;
reflecting also that in a single battle he had lost the reputation and
the power which were the fruit of so many struggles and wars, and
while a little before he was protected by so many armed men and
horses, and armaments, now he was retreating and had become so weak
and humbled, as easily to escape the notice of his enemies who were
looking for him. After passing Larissa[380] and arriving at Tempe,
being thirsty he threw himself down on his face and drank of the
river, and then rising up he proceeded through Tempe till he reached
the sea. There he rested for the remainder of the night in a
fisherman's hut, and at daybreak embarking on board of one of the
river-boats and taking with him those of his followers who were
freemen, and bidding his slaves go to Cæsar without any apprehension
for their safety, he rowed along the coast till he saw a large
merchant-ship preparing to set sail, the master of which was a Roman,
who had no intimacy with Pompeius, but knew him by sight: his name was
Peticius. It happened the night before that Peticius saw Pompeius in a
dream, not as he had often seen him, but humble and downcast, speaking
to him. And it happened that he was telling his dream to his
shipmates, as is usual with men in such weighty matters, who have
nothing to do; when all at once one of the sailors called out that he
spied a river-boat rowing from the land with men in it who were making
signals with their clothes and stretching out their hands to them.
Accordingly Peticius turning his eyes in that direction recognised
Pompeius just as he had seen him in the dream, and striking his
forehead he ordered the sailors to put the boat alongside, and he
stretched out his right hand and called to Pompeius, already
conjecturing from his appearance the fortune and the reverses of the
man. Upon which the master, without waiting to be entreated or
addressed, took on board with him, all whom Pompeius chose (and these
were the two Lentuli[381] and Favonius), and set sail; and shortly
after seeing King Deiotarus making his way from the land as fast as he
could they took him in also. When it was supper time and the master
had made the best preparation that he could, Favonius observing that
Pompeius had no domestics and was beginning to take off his shoes, ran
up to him and loosed his shoes and helped him to anoint himself. And
henceforward Favonius continued to wait on Pompeius and serve him,
just as slaves do their master, even to the washing of his feet and
preparing his meals, so that a witness of the free will of that
service and the simplicity and absence of all affectation might have

     "To generous minds how noble every task."[382]

LXXIV. In such wise Pompeius coasted to Amphipolis,[383] and thence
crossed over to Mitylene, wishing to take up Cornelia and her son.
Upon reaching the shore of the island he sent a message to the city,
not such as Cornelia expected, for the pleasing intelligence that she
had received both by report and by letter led her to hope that the war
was terminated near Dyrrachium, and that all that remained for
Pompeius was to pursue Cæsar. The messenger, who found her in this
state of expectation, did not venture to salute her, but indicating by
tears more than words the chief and greatest of her misfortunes, he
bade her hasten, if she wished to see Pompeius in a single vessel and
that not his own. Cornelia, on hearing these words, threw herself on
the ground, and lay there a long time without sense or speech, and
with difficulty recovering herself, and seeing that it was not a time
for tears and lamentations, she ran through the city to the sea.
Pompeius met and caught her in his arms as she was just ready to sink
down and fall upon him, when Cornelia said, "I see you, husband, not
through your own fortune but mine, reduced to a single vessel, you who
before your marriage with Cornelia sailed along this sea with five
hundred ships. Why have you come to see me, and why did you not leave
to her evil dæmon one who has loaded you also with so much misfortune?
How happy a woman should I have been had I died before I heard that
Publius, whose virgin bride I was, had perished by the Parthians; and
how wise, if even after he died I had put an end to my own life, as I
attempted to do; but forsooth I have been kept alive to be the ruin of
Pompeius Magnus also."

LXXV. So it is said Cornelia spoke, and thus Pompeius replied: "It is
true, Cornelia, you have hitherto known only one fortune, and that the
better; and perhaps it has deceived you too, in that it has abided
with me longer than is wont. But as we are mortals, we must bear this
change, and still try fortune; for it is not hopeless for a man to
attempt from this condition to recover his former state who has come
to this after being in that other." Accordingly Cornelia sent for her
property and slaves from the city; and though the Mitylenæans came to
pay their respects to Pompeius, and invited him to enter the city, he
would not, but he exhorted them also to yield to the conqueror and to
be of good heart, for Cæsar was merciful and of a humane disposition.
But turning to Kratippus[384] the philosopher, for he had come down
from the city to see him, Pompeius found fault with and in a few
words expressed some doubts about Providence, Kratippus rather giving
way to him and trying to lead him to better hopes, that he might not
give him pain at so unseasonable a time by arguing against him; for
Pompeius might have questioned him about Providence, and Kratippus
might have shown that the state of affairs at Rome required a monarchy
on account of the political disorder; and he might have asked
Pompeius, "How, Pompeius, and by what evidence shall we be persuaded
that you would have used your fortune better than Cæsar, if you had
been victorious?" But these matters that concern the gods we must
leave as they are.

LXXVI. Taking on board his wife and friends, Pompeius continued his
voyage, only putting in at such ports as of necessity he must for
water or provisions. The first city that he came to was Attaleia[385]
of Pamphylia; and there some galleys from Cilicia met him, and some
soldiers were collecting, and there were again about sixty senators
about him. Hearing that his navy still kept together, and that Cato
had recruited many soldiers and was passing over to Libya, he lamented
to his friends and blamed himself for being forced to engage with his
army only, and for not making any use of the force which was beyond
all dispute superior to that of the enemy; and that his navy was not
so stationed that if he were defeated by land he might forthwith have
had what would have made him a match for the enemy, a strength and
power so great by sea close at hand. Indeed Pompeius committed no
greater fault, nor did Cæsar show any greater generalship, than in
withdrawing the field of battle so far beyond the reach of assistance
from the navy. However, being compelled in the present state of
affairs to decide and do something, he sent round to the cities, and
himself sailing about to some, asked them for money, and began to man
ships. But fearing the rapid movements and speed of his enemy, lest he
should come upon him and take him before he was prepared, he looked
about for a place of refuge for the present and a retreat. Now there
appeared to them upon consideration to be no province to which they
could safely fly; and as to the kingdoms, Pompeius gave it as his
opinion that the Parthian[386] at the present was the best able to
receive and protect them in their present weakness, and to strengthen
them again and to send them forth with the largest force; of the rest,
some turned their thoughts towards Libya and Juba,[387] but Theophanes
of Lesbos pronounced it madness to leave Egypt, which was only three
days' sail distant, and Ptolemæus,[388] who was still a youth, and
indebted to Pompeius for the friendship and favour which his father
had received from him, and to put himself in the hands of the
Parthians, a most treacherous nation; and to be the first of all
persons who did not choose to submit to a Roman who had been connected
with him by marriage, nor to make trial of his moderation, and to put
himself in the power of Arsakes,[389] who was not able to take even
Crassus so long as he was alive; and to carry a young wife of the
family of Scipio among barbarians, who measured their power by their
insolence and unbridled temper; and if no harm should befall Cornelia,
and it should only be apprehended that she might suffer injury, it
would be a sad thing for her to be in the power of those who were able
to do it. This alone, it is said diverted Pompeius from proceeding to
the Euphrates; if indeed any reflection still guided Pompeius, and he
was not rather directed by a dæmon to the way that he took.

LXXVII. Accordingly when the proposal to fly to Egypt prevailed,
Pompeius setting sail from Cyprus in a galley of Seleukeia[390] with
his wife (and of the rest some accompanied him also in ships of war,
and others in merchant vessels), crossed the sea safely; and hearing
that Ptolemæus[391] was seated before Pelusium with his army, being
engaged in war against his sister, he came to that part of the coast
and sent forward a person to announce his arrival to the king and to
pray for his protection. Now Ptolemæus was very young, and Potheinus
who managed everything, summoned a council of the chief persons; and
the chief persons were those whom he chose to make so, and he bade
each man give his opinion. It was indeed a sad thing that such men
should deliberate about Pompeius Magnus, as Potheinus the eunuch and
Theodotus of Chios who was hired as a teacher of rhetoric and the
Egyptian Achillas: for these were the chief advisers of the king among
the eunuchs and others who had the care of his person; and such was
the court whose decision Pompeius was waiting for at anchor some
distance from the shore and tossed by the waves, he who thought it
beneath him to be indebted to Cæsar for his life. Now opinions among
the rest were so far divided that some advised they should drive away
Pompeius, and others, that they should invite and receive him: but
Theodotus displaying his power in speech and his rhetorical art proved
that neither of these courses was safe, but that if they received
Pompeius, they would have Cæsar for an enemy and Pompeius for their
master, and if they drove him away, they would incur the displeasure
of Pompeius for ejecting him and of Cæsar for the trouble of the
pursuit; it was therefore best to send for the man and kill him, for
thus they would please Cæsar and have nothing to fear from Pompeius.
And he concluded with a smile, as it is said, A dead man does not

LXXVIII. Having determined on this they intrust the execution to
Achillas, who taking with him one Septimius who had a long time ago
served under Pompeius as a centurion and Salvius another centurion and
three or four slaves, put out towards the ship of Pompeius. It
happened that all the most distinguished persons who accompanied
Pompeius had come on board his ship to see what was going on.
Accordingly when they saw a reception which was neither royal nor
splendid nor corresponding to the expectations of Theophanes, but a
few men in a fishing-boat sailing towards them, this want of respect
made them suspect treachery and they advised Pompeius to row back into
the open sea, while they were still out of reach of missiles. In the
mean time as the boat was nearing, Septimius was the first to rise and
he addressed Pompeius as Imperator in the Roman language and Achillas
saluting him in Greek invited him to enter the boat, because, as he
said, the shallows were of great extent and the sea being rather sandy
had not depth enough to float a trireme. At the same time it was
observed that some of the king's ships were getting their men on
board, and soldiers occupied the shore, so that it appeared impossible
to escape even if they changed their minds and made the attempt; and
besides, this want of confidence would give the murderers some excuse
for their crime. Accordingly, after embracing Cornelia who was
anticipating and bewailing his fate, he ordered two centurions to step
into the boat before him, and Philippus one of his freedmen and a
slave called Scythes, and while Achillas was offering him his hand out
of the boat, he turned round to his wife and son and repeated the
iambics of Sophocles,

    "Whoever to a tyrant bends his way,
    Is made his slave, e'en if he goes a freeman."

LXXIX.[392] These were the last words that he spoke to his friends
before he entered the boat: and as it was a considerable distance to
the land from the galley, and none of those in the boat addressed any
friendly conversation to him, looking at Septimius he said, "I am not
mistaken I think in recognising you as an old comrade of mine;" and
Septimius nodded without making any reply or friendly acknowledgment.
As there was again a profound silence, Pompeius who had a small roll
on which he had written a speech in Greek that he intended to address
to Ptolemæus, began reading it. As they neared the land, Cornelia with
her friends in great anxiety was watching the result from the galley,
and she began to have good hopes when she saw some of the king's
people collecting together at the landing as if to honor Pompeius and
give him a reception. In the mean time, while Pompeius was taking the
hand of Philippus that he might rise more easily, Septimius from
behind was the first to transfix him with his sword; and Salvius, and
after him Achillas drew their swords. Pompeius drawing his toga close
with both hands over his face, without saying or doing anything
unworthy of himself, but giving a groan only, submitted to the blows,
being sixty years of age save one, and ending his life just one day
after his birthday.

LXXX. Those in the ships seeing the murder uttered a shriek which
could be heard even to the land, and quickly raising their anchors,
took to flight: and a strong breeze aided them in their escape to the
open sea, so that the Egyptians, though desirous of pursuing, turned
back. They cut off the head of Pompeius, and throwing the body naked
out of the boat, left it for those to gaze at who felt any curiosity.
Philippus stayed by the body, till the people wore satisfied with
looking at it, and then washing it with sea-water he wrapped it up in
a tunic of his own; and as he had no other means, he looked about till
he found the wreck of a small fishing-boat, which was decayed indeed,
but enough to make a funeral pile in case of need for a naked body,
and that not an entire corpse. As he was collecting these fragments
and putting them together, a Roman, now an old man[393] who had served
his first campaigns in his youth under Pompeius, stood by him and
said: "Who are you, my friend, that are preparing to perform the
funeral rites to Pompeius Magnus?" Philippus replying that he was a
freedman, the man said: "But you shall not have this honour to
yourself: allow me too to share in this pious piece of good fortune,
that I may not altogether have to complain of being in a strange land,
if in requital for many sufferings I get this honour at least, to
touch and to tend with my hands the greatest of the Roman generals."
Such were the obsequies of Pompeius. On the next day Lucius Lentulus
who was on his voyage from Cyprus, not knowing what had happened, was
coasting along the shore, when he saw the pile and Philippus standing
by it before he was seen himself and said, "Who is resting here after
closing his career?" and after a slight interval, with a groan, he
added, "perhaps it is you, Pompeius Magnus." Presently he landed, and
being seized was put to death. This was the end of Pompeius. Not long
after Cæsar arriving in Egypt, which was filled with this horrid deed,
turned away from the man who brought him the head of Pompeius, as from
a murderer, and when he received the seal of Pompeius, he shed tears;
the device was a lion holding a sword. He put to death Achillas and
Potheinus, and the king himself being defeated in battle was lost
somewhere near the river. Theodotus the sophist escaped the vengeance
of Cæsar, for he fled from Egypt and wandered about in a miserable
state, the object of detestation; but Brutus Marcus, after he had
killed Cæsar and got the power in his hands, finding Theodotus in
Asia, put him to death with every circumstance of contumely. Cornelia
obtained the remains of Pompeius and had them carried to his Alban
villa and interred there.


[Footnote 189: This line is from the Prometheus Loosed ([Greek:
luomenos] λυόμενος) of Aeschylus which is lost. Prometheus Bound
([Greek: desmôtês] δεσμώτης) is extant. Hermann is of opinion that the
Prometheus Loosed did not belong to the same Tetralogy as the
Prometheus Bound.]

[Footnote 190: The Gens to which Pompeius belonged was Plebeian. Cn.
Pompeius Strabo, the father of Pompeius Magnus, was consul B.C. 89.
Strabo, a name derived like many other Roman names from some personal
peculiarity, signifies one who squints, and it was borne by members of
other Roman Gentes also, as the Julia, and Fannia. It is said that the
father of Pompeius Magnus had a cook Menogenes, who was called Strabo,
and that the name was given to Cn. Pompeius because he resembled his
cook. However this may be, Cn. Pompeius adopted the name, and it
appears on his coins and in the Fasti. He had a bad character and
appears to have deserved it. (Drumann, _Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p.
306.) Compare the Life of Sulla, c. 6. Notes.

The latter part of this chapter is somewhat obscure in the original.
See the note of Coræs.]

[Footnote 191: L. Marcius Philippus, Consul B.C. 91 with Sextus Julius
Cæsar, was a distinguished orator.]

[Footnote 192: Some of the commentators have had strange opinions
about the meaning of this passage, which Kaltwasser has mistranslated.
It is rightly explained in Schaefer's note, and the learned Lambinus
has fully expounded it in a note on Horatius (_Od._ i. 13): but in
place of [Greek: adêktos] ἀδήκτος he has a wrong reading [Greek:
adêkto] ἀδήκτο. Flora was not the only courtesan who received the
distinction mentioned in the text. The gilded statue of Phryne, the
work of Praxiteles, was placed in the temple at Delphi, presented by
the lady herself. (Pausanias, x. 15).]

[Footnote 193: Pompeius Magnus was born B.C. 106. He was younger than
Marcus Crassus, of the same age as Cicero, and six years older than
the Dictator Cæsar. The event mentioned in the chapter belongs to the
year B.C 87, in which his father fought against L. Cinna. Pompeius
Strabo died in this year.]

[Footnote 194: This town, now Ascoli on the Tronto, in Picenum, was
taken by Pompeius Strabo B.C. 89 in the Marsic war, and burnt. The
inhabitants, who had killed the proconsul P. Servilius and other
Romans, were severely handled; and Pompeius Strabo had a triumph
(December 89) for his success against the Asculani and other
inhabitants of Picenum. (Velleius, ii. 21.)]

[Footnote 195: P. Antistius was prætor B.C. 86, the year after the
death of Pompeius Strabo.]

[Footnote 196: Compare the Life of Romulus, c. 14.]

[Footnote 197: Cinna was killed in his fourth consulate, B.C. 84.
Appianus (_Civil Wars_, i. 78) states that he was massacred by his
soldiers, but his account may be true and that of Plutarch also, which
is more particular, (See also Livius, _Epit._ 83.)]

[Footnote 198: The father of Pompeius had enriched himself during the
Social wars.]

[Footnote 199: Now Osimo, was one of the cities of Picenum, south of
Ancona. It was a Roman colony.]

[Footnote 200: The three commanders were C. Albius Carinnas, C. Cœlius
Caldus and M. Junius Brutus. The word Clœlius in Plutarch may be a
mistake of the copyists. Brutus was the father of M. Brutus, one of
Cæsar's assassins.]

[Footnote 201: L. Cornelius Scipio, consul B.C. 83. Plutarch speaks of
the same event in the Life of Sulla, c. 28, where he states that the
soldiers of Scipio came over to Sulla. The two statements are
contradictory, Appianus (_Civil Wars_, i. 85) tells the story of
Scipio's army going over to Sulla.]

[Footnote 202: A mistake for Æsis (Esino, or Finmesino), a river which
formed the boundary between Umbria and Picenum, and enters the sea
north of Ancona. Appianus (_Civil Wars_, i. 87) states that Metellus
defeated Carinnas, the legatus of Carbo, on the Æsis (B.C. 82).]

[Footnote 203: This was Q. Metellus Pius who afterwards commanded in
Iberia against Sertorius. See the Life of Sertorius.]

[Footnote 204: The Greek writers often employ similes and metaphors
derived from the athletic contests. There were contests both for boys
and full-grown men. Compare the Life of Agesilaus, c. 13.]

[Footnote 205: The marriage arrangements mentioned in this chapter
took place after the capture of Præneste, B.C. 82. See the Life of
Sulla, c. 33. Sulla attempted to make Cæsar also part with his wife
(Cæsar, c. 1): but Cæsar would not. Sulla, who was a cunning man,
wished to gain over to his side all the young men of promise.

Antistius had been murdered in the Senate-house, by the order of the
consul, the younger Marius, who was then blockaded in Præneste. Q.
Mucius Scævola, the Pontifex, was murdered at the same time.
(Appianus, _Civil Wars_, i. 88.)]

[Footnote 206: His true name is Perperna. See the Life of Sertorius.]

[Footnote 207: Cn. Papirius Carbo was put to death, B.C. 82, in his
third consulship. Compare Appianus, _Civil Wars_, i. 96, and Life of
Sulla, c. 28, Notes. Valerius Maximus, ix. c. 13, gives the story of
his begging for a short respite, with some other particulars.]

[Footnote 208: Caius Oppius, an intimate friend of Cæsar. Some persons
believed that he was the author of the Books on the Alexandrine,
African, and Spanish campaigns, which are printed with the Gallic War
of Cæsar. (Suetonius, _Cæsar_, 56.) Hs wrote various biographies.
Oppius is often mentioned by Cicero. There is extant a letter of
Cicero to him _Ad Diversos_, xi. 29); but it is entitled in some
editions of Cicero 'To Appius.']

[Footnote 209: This was Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus, the father-in-law of
Cinna. He had been consul B.C. 96 with C. Cassius Longinus.]

[Footnote 210: C. Memmius, according to Drumann, the same who
afterwards fell in the war against Sertorius. (Life of Sertorius, c.

[Footnote 211: The expedition of Pompeius to Africa was in B.C. 81.
Iarbas is said to have been a descendant of Massinissa. He escaped
from the battle. The scene of the battle and the subsequent movements
of Pompeius cannot be collected from Plutarch's narrative, which here,
as in the case of military operations generally, is of no value. As to
the age of Pompeius, see the note in Clinton's Fasti B.C. 81.]

[Footnote 212: The lion is a native of North Africa, but it is
doubtful if the elephant is. The Carthaginians employed many elephants
in their armies, which they probably got from the countries south of
the great desert. Plutarch evidently considers the elephant as a
native of North Africa, or he would not speak of hunting it; yet in
chapter 14 he speaks of the elephants as the King's, or the King's
elephants, as if the elephants that Pompeius took were merely some
that belonged to Iarbas or some of the African kings, and had got
loose. Plinius (_N.H._ viii. 1) speaks of elephants in the forests of
Mauritania. They are enumerated by Herodotus (iv. 191) among the
beasts of North Africa.]

[Footnote 213: Drumann discusses at some length the question as to the
time and occasion on which Pompeius received the appellation: those
who are curious may consult his work, _Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p.

[Footnote 214: M. Valerius Maximus, a brother of Publicola. The
allusion is to the secession of the Plebs to the Mons Sacer, B.C. 494,
which was followed by the institution of the Tribunitian office.
Cicero (Brutus, 14) mentions this Valerius, and the secession to the
Mons Sacer. See Livius, ii. 30.]

[Footnote 215: Q. Fabius Maximus Rullus, who was five times consul,
and for the last time in B.C. 295. (Livius, x. 22.) He was afterwards
Dictator and Censor. It was in his capacity of Censor that he ejected
these persons from the Senate, B.C. 304. Compare the Life of Fabius
Maximus, c. 1.]

[Footnote 216: Kaltwasser observes that it was not so much a law (lex)
as a usage: but Plutarch's words by no means imply that he thought
there was a Lex to this effect. Livius (xxxi. c. 20) states that only
a dictator, consul, or prætor could have a triumph. The claim of
Pompeius was an impudent demand: but he felt his power. The 'first
Scipio' is the elder Africanus. See Life of Tiberius Gracchus, c. 1,

[Footnote 217: Plutarch may mean that Pompeius really attempted to
enter the gate in a chariot drawn by elephants, and finding that he
could not do it, he got out and mounted a chariot drawn by horses.
This is perhaps nearer the literal version of the passage, and agrees
better with Plinius (_N. H._ viii. 1).]

[Footnote 218: P. Servilius Vatia Isauricus, consul for B.C. 79.
Pompeius triumphed B.C. 81, or in the beginning of 80 B.C., the first
of the class of Equites who ever had this honour. The review of the
Equites, which is spoken of at the end of this chapter, is explained
by c. 22.]

[Footnote 219: Compare the Life of Sulla, c. 31, &c. Sulla died in the
consulship of M. Æmilius Lepidus and Q. Lutatius Catulus, B.C. 78.]

[Footnote 220: This is the Roman expression, which Plutarch has
rendered by [Greek: hoi aristoi] οἱ άριστοι. Compare Life of Tib.
Gracchus, c. 10.]

[Footnote 221: On the site of Modena. The events of the consulship of
Lepidus are very confused. Drumann observes (Pompeii, p. 345) that
Plutarch incorrectly tells the story as if Pompeius was not present at
the attack of Lepidus on Rome (Appianus, _Civil Wars_, i. 107; Floras,
iii. 23): but Plutarch's narrative does not of necessity imply that
Pompeius was not there.]

[Footnote 222: See the Life of Brutus.]

[Footnote 223: See the Life of Sertorius, and as to the conduct of
Pompeius in the war more particularly, chapter 12, &c.]

[Footnote 224: Pro Consule was the title of a Roman general who was
sent to a province with consular authority. It was not unusual to
appoint a man Pro Consule who had not been 'consul.' The point of the
reply lies in the form of the expression 'Pro Consule,' which was a
title, as contrasted with 'Pro Consulibus,' which means 'instead of
the consuls, to displace the consuls.' The expression of L. Philippus
is recorded by Cicero (_Pro Lege Manilia_, c. 21). Pompeius went to
Iberia B.C. 76.]

[Footnote 225: The death of Sertorius took place B.C. 72. As to the
death of Perperna, see the Life of Sertorius, c. 26. The allusion to
Sicily will be explained by referring to c. 10; but there is nothing
there stated for which Pompeius needed to show any gratitude to
Perperna. We may assume that Perperna left the island, because he
could not safely stay.]

[Footnote 226: The war in Spain was not quite settled by the death of
Perperna. There was still some work left to do. Several towns held
out, particularly in the country of the warlike Arevaci, who were on
the east coast of Spain. Pompeius burnt Uxama; and L. Afranius
conducted the war with unsparing severity against the Calaguritani who
made a desperate resistance. (Floras, iii. 22.) The capture of their
town ended the war. Drumann, _Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 376.]

[Footnote 227: The history of the Servile war is in the Life of
Crassus, c. 11, &c.]

[Footnote 228: This was in B.C. 71. In B.C. 70 Pompeius was consul for
the first time with M. Licinius Crassus.]

[Footnote 229: Sulla had not abolished the tribunitian office, but he
had deprived the tribunes of the chief part of their power. It does
not seem exactly certain what Sulla did. Appianus (_Civil Wars_, i.
100) says 'that he weakened it very much and carried a law by which no
man after being tribune could hold any other office.' Cicero (_De
Legibus_, iii. 9) considers the extension of the tribunitian power as
unavoidable, and as effected with the least mischief by being the work
of Pompeius.]

[Footnote 230: A Cornelia Lex, passed in the time of Sulla, made the
Judices in the Judicia Publica eligible only out of the body of
Senators. That the Senators had acted corruptly in the administration
of justice, we have the authority of Cicero in one of his Verrine
orations (_In Verr._ A 1, 13 and 16). The measure for restoring the
Equites to a share in the judicial functions was proposed by the
prætor L. Aurelius Cotta, the uncle of C. Julius Cæsar, with the
approbation of Pompeius and Cæsar, who were now acting in concert. The
charges of corruption which Cotta made against the Senate are recorded
by Cicero (_In Verr._ iii. 96). The proposed law (rogatio), which was
carried, made the Judices eligible out of the Senators, Equites, and
Tribuni Ærarii, which three classes are mentioned by Cicero (_Ad
Atticum_, i. 16) as represented by the Judices who sat on the trial of
Clodius. The purity of the administration of justice was not hereby
improved. Cicero, on the occasion of the trial of Clodius, speaks of
all these classes having their dishonest representatives among the

[Footnote 231: Compare the Life of Crassus, c. 12.

The remarks at the end of the chapter may be useful to some men who
would meddle with matters political, when their only training has been
in camps. Pompeius was merely a soldier, and had no capacity for civil

[Footnote 232: The history of piracy in the Mediterranean goes as far
back as the history of navigation. The numerous creeks and islands of
this inland sea offer favourable opportunities for piratical posts,
and accordingly we read of pirates as early as we read of commerce by
sea. (Thucydides, i. 5.) The disturbances in the Roman State had
encouraged these freebooters in their depredations. Cæsar, when a
young man, fell into their hands (Life of Cæsar, c. 1); and also P.
Clodius. The insecure state of Italy is shown by the fact of the
pirates even landing on the Italian coast, and seizing the Roman
magistrates, Sextilius and Bellienus. Cicero in his oration in favour
of the Lex Manilia (c. 12, c. 17, &c.) gives some particulars of the
excesses of the pirates. Antonia, whom they carried off, was the
daughter of the distinguished orator, Marcus Antonius (Life of Marius,
c. 44), who had been sent against the Cilician pirates B.C. 102, and
had a triumph for his victory over them. If Cicero alludes (_Pro Lege
Manilia_) to the capture of the daughter of Antonius, that probably
took place before B.C. 87, for in that year Antonius was put to death.
But Cicero speaks of the daughter of 'a prætor' being carried off from
Misenum, and it is not improbable that he alludes to M. Antonius
Creticus, prætor B.C. 75. If this explanation is correct, the Antonia
was the grand-daughter of the orator Antonius.]

[Footnote 233: [Greek: stulides] στυλίδες. The meaning of this word is
uncertain. [Greek: Stulis] Στυλίς is a diminutive of [Greek: stulos]
στῦλος, and signifies a small pillar, or pole. It may be that which
carried the colours. But I do not profess to have translated the word,
for I do not know what is meant.]

[Footnote 234: From the places enumerated it appears that the pirates
had carried their ravages from the coast of Asia Minor to the shores
of Greece and up the Ionian Sea as far as the entrance of the Gulf of
Ambracia, now the Gulf of Arta, near the entrance of which Actium was
situated on the southern coast, and even to the Italian shores. The
temple of Juno Lacinia was on the south-eastern coast of Italy on a
promontory, now called Capo delle Colonne, from the ruins of the
ancient temple. The noted temples of antiquity were filled with works
of art and rich offerings, the gifts of pious devotees. Cicero (_Pro
Lege Manilia_), c. 18) speaks of the pirates as infesting even the Via

[Footnote 235: Not the mountain of that name, Kaltwasser remarks, but
a town of Lycia in Asia Minor, one of the headquarters of the pirates.
Strabo (p. 671) places Olympus in Cilicia. There was both a city and a
mountain named Olympus there; and I have accordingly translated 'on
Olympus.' (Beaufort, _Karamania_, p. 46.)]

[Footnote 236: Mithras was a Persian deity, as it appears. The name
occurs in many Persian compounds as Mithridates, Ithamitres, and
others. _Mitra_ is a Sanscrit name for the Sun. (Wilson, _Sanscrit

[Footnote 237: The Mediterranean. See the Life of Sertorius, c. 8,
note. As to the limits of the command of Pompeius, compare Velleius
Paterculus, ii. 31.]

[Footnote 238: Aulus Gabinius, one of the tribunes for the year B.C.
67, proposed the measure. The consuls of this year were C. Calpurnius
Piso and M. Acilius Glabrio.]

[Footnote 239: L. Roscius Otho, one of the tribunes, and the proposer
of the unpopular law (B.C. 67) which gave the Equites fourteen
separate seats at the theatre. (Velleius, ii. 32; Dion Cassius, 36, c.

[Footnote 240: Compare the Life of Flaminiaus, c. 10.]

[Footnote 241: [Greek: ekomizen] ἐκόμιζεν in the text. The reading is
perhaps wrong, and the sense is doubtful. Reiske conjectured that it
should be [Greek: ekolaze] ἐκόλαζε.]

[Footnote 242: This place is on the coast of the Rough or Mountainous
Cilicia, on a steep rock near the sea. (Strabo, p. 668; Beaufort's
_Karamania_, p. 174.)]

[Footnote 243: Soli was an Achæan and Rhodian colony. After being
settled by Pompeius, it received the name of Pompeiopolis, or the city
of Pompeius. It is on the coast of the Level Cilicia, twenty miles
west of the mouth of the river Cydnus, on which Tarsus stood. Soli was
the birthplace of the Stoic Chrysippus, and of Philemon the comic
writer. (Strabo, p. 671; Beaufort's _Kar._, p. 259.)]

[Footnote 244: Compare the Life of Lucullus, c. 26.]

[Footnote 245: One of the towns of Achæa in the Peloponnesus, near the
borders of Elis. Pausanias (vii. 17).

As to the number of the pirates who surrendered, see Appianus
(_Mithridatic War_, c. 96).]

[Footnote 246: Q. Cæcilius Metellus Creticus is stated by some modern
writers to have been a son of Metellus Dalmaticus; but it is unknown
who his father and grandfather were. (Drumann, _Geschichte Roms_.) He
had been consul B.C. 69. (Compare Velleius Paterculus, ii. 32.)]

[Footnote 247: The passage is in the Iliad, xxii. 207.]

[Footnote 248: Or as Plutarch writes it Mallius. The tribune C.
Manilius is meant, who carried the Lex Manilia, B.C. 66, which gave
Pompeius the command in the Mithridatic war. Cicero supported the law
in the speech which is extant, Pro Lege Manilia. It has been proposed
to alter Mallius in Plutarch's text into Manilius, but Sintenis refers
to Dion Cassius (36. c. 25, 26, 27).]

[Footnote 249: This was Glabrio the consul of B.C. 67 (see note on c.
25), who had been appointed to supersede Lucullus. (Life of Lucullus,
c. 34, notes.)]

[Footnote 250: The allusion is to the secession of the Plebs to the
Mons Sacer, which is recorded in Livius (2. c. 32).]

[Footnote 251: See the Life of Tib. Gracchus, c. 12, and the note.]

[Footnote 252: Pompeius was appointed to the command in the
Mithridatic war B.C. 66, when he was in Cilicia. (Appianus,
_Mithridatic War_, c. 97.)]

[Footnote 253: Compare the Life of Lucullus, c. 35, &c.]

[Footnote 254: As to the events in this chapter, compare Appianus,
_Mithridatic War_, c. 98, &c.]

[Footnote 255: Probably a Greek woman, as we may infer from the name.
The king seems to have had a liking for Greek women.]

[Footnote 256: This is probably a corrupted name. It is Sinorega in
Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 101). Coræs proposes Sinora. (Strabo,
p. 555.) The place is mentioned by Ammianus (quoted by Sintenis) under
the name of Sinhorium or Synorium. Strabo places Sinoria (as it is
written in Casaubon's text) on the borders of the Greater Armenia.]

[Footnote 257: Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 101) describes the
course which Mithridates took in his flight. He spent the winter in
Dioscuri, as Appianus calls it, or Dioscurias on the east coast of the
Euxine; and afterwards entered the countries bordering on the Mæotis
or sea of Azoff. (Compare Strabo, p. 555.)]

[Footnote 258: He was the third son of Tigranes by the daughter of
Mithridates. The other two had been put to death by their father. The
young Tigranes appeared in the triumph of Pompeius at Rome and then
was put to death. (Appianus, _Mithridatic War_, c. 104, 5.)]

[Footnote 259: See the Life of Lucullus, c. 26, notes.]

[Footnote 260: Probably Artaxata is meant, for Appianus (c. 104) says
that Pompeius had advanced to the neighbourhood of Artaxata.

Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 104) places these transactions with
Tigranes after the battle with the Iberians which Plutarch describes
in c. 34.]

[Footnote 261: Probably a Persian word, with the same meaning as
Tiara, the head-dress of the Persians and some other Oriental nations.
The kings wore it upright to distinguish them from other people.
(Herodotus, vii. 61.)]

[Footnote 262: A part of Armenia between the Antitaurus and the
mountain range of Masius. (Strabo, p. 527.)]

[Footnote 263: Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 104) states that
Pompeius received 6000 talents (of silver?) from Tigranes; and he
seems to understand it as if the money was for Pompeius. In the other
sums he agrees with Plutarch, except as to the tribunes, who received
10,000 drachmæ, or one talent and 4000 drachmæ, or 40 minæ.

On the value of the drachma, see Life of Tib. Gracchus, c. 2.]

[Footnote 264: _I.e._, to sup with.]

[Footnote 265: This great mountain system lies between the Euxine and
the Caspian, and was now entered for the first time by the Roman
troops. Colchis was on the west side of the mountains.]

[Footnote 266: The Saturnalia were celebrated in Rome on the 19th of
December at this time. (Macrobius, _Sat._ i. 10; and the Life of
Sulla, c. 18.) It was accordingly in the winter of B.C. 66 that
Pompeius was in the mountains of the Caucasus. (Dion Cassius, 36. c.
36, 37.)]

[Footnote 267: I have kept the name Cyrnus, as it stands in the text
of Plutarch, though it is probably, an error of the transcribers. The
real name Cyrus could not be unknown to Plutarch. In the text of
Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 103) the name is erroneously written
Cyrtus; in Dion Cassius, it is Cyrnus. The Cyrus, now the Cur, flows
from the higher regions of the Caucasus through Iberia and Albania,
and is joined by the Araxes, Aras, above the point where the united
stream enters the Caspian on the west coast. The twelve mouths are
mentioned by Appianus (c. 103). Compare Strabo, p. 491.]

[Footnote 268: In fact the Persians never subdued any of the mountain
tribes within the nominal limits of their dominions; and the Caucasus
was indeed not even within the nominal limits.

It is true that Alexander soon quitted Hyrkania, which lies on the
south-east coast of the Caspian; but when he was in Hyrkania he was
still a considerable distance from the Iberians. (Arrianus, iii. 23,

[Footnote 269: This is the Faz, or Reone, which enters the south-east
angle of the Euxine in the country of the Colchi.]

[Footnote 270: The Abas river is conjectured by some writers to be the
Alazonius, which was the boundary between Iberia and Albania, The Abas
is mentioned by Dion Cassius, 37. c. 3.]

[Footnote 271: [Greek: epi tên tou thôrakos epiptuchên] ἐπὶ τὴν τοῦ
θώρακος ἐπιπτυχήν Apparently some part of the coat of mail where there
was a fold to allow of the motion of the body. As to the battle see
Dion Cassius, 37. c. 3, &c.]

[Footnote 272: Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 103) says "Among the
hostages and the captives were found many women, who were wounded as
much as the men; and they were supposed to be Amazons, whether it is
that some nation called Amazons borders on them, and they were then
invited to give aid, or that the barbarians in those parts call any
warlike women by the name of Amazons." The explanation of Appianus is
probably the true explanation. Instances of women serving as soldiers
are not uncommon even in modern warfare. The story of a race of
fighting women occurs in many ancient writers. The Amazons are first
mentioned by Herodotus (iv. 110-116). There is a story of a hundred
armed women being presented to Alexander (Arrian, vii. 13, &c., who
gives his opinion about them). Strabo (p. 503) says that Theophanes,
who accompanied Pompeius in this campaign, places the Gelæ and Legæ
between the Albanians and the Amazons. It is probable that the women
of the mountain tribes of the Caucasus sometimes served in the field,
and this at least may explain the story here told by Plutarch. The
chief residence of the Amazons is placed in the plains of Themiscyra
on the Thermodon in Cappadocia. Plutarch in his confused notions of
geography appears to consider the Thermodon as a Caucasian river. He
also places them near the Leges, a name which resembles that of the
Lesghians, one of the present warlike tribes of the Caucasus. On
antient medals the Amazons are represented with a short vest reaching
to the knee, and one breast bare. Their arms were a crescent shield,
the bow and arrow, and the double axe, whence the name Amazonia was
used as a distinctive appellation for that weapon (Amazonia securis,
Horat. _Od._ iv. 4).]

[Footnote 273: The Caspian sea or lake was also called the Hyrkanian,
from the province of Hyrkania which bordered on the south-east coast.
The first notice of this great lake is in Herodotus (i. 203).]

[Footnote 274: The Elymæi were mountaineers who occupied the
mountainous region between Susiana and Media. Gordyene was in the most
south-eastern part of Armenia. Tigranocerta was in Gordyene. Appianus
says that in his time Sophene and Gordyene composed the Less Armenia
(_Mithridatic War_, c. 105). In the territory of Arbela, where the
town of Arbil now is, Alexander had defeated Darius, the last king of

[Footnote 275: Another Greek woman, as we may infer from the name. The
story of the surrender of the fort by Stratonike is told by Appianus
(_Mithridatic War_, c. 107) with some additional particulars. Dion
Cassius (37. c. 7) names this fort Symphorium.

The narrative of Plutarch omits many circumstances in the campaigns of
Pompeius, which Appianus has described (c. 105, 106) a happening
between the arrangement with Tigranes and the surrender of the fort by
Stratonike. Among these events was the war in Judæa and the capture of
Jerusalem. Pompeius entered the Holy of Holies in the Temple, into
which only the high priest could enter, and that on certain occasions.
Jerusalem was taken B.C. 63 in the consulship of Cicero. The events of
this campaign are too confused to be reduced into chronological order.
Drumann has attempted it (_Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 451, &c.)]

[Footnote 276: Plutarch means the fort which he has mentioned in the
preceding chapter without there giving it a name; the Symphorium of
Dion. It was on the river Lycus, not quite 200 stadia from Cabira
(Strabo, 556), and was an impregnable place.]

[Footnote 277: [Greek: Hupomnêmata] Ὑπομνήματα: probably written in
Greek, with which Mithridates was well acquainted. These valuable
memoirs were used by Theophanes in his history of the campaigns of
Pompeius. Theophanes was a native of Mitylene in Lesbos and
accompanied Pompeius in several of his campaigns. He is often
mentioned by Cicero (Cicero, _Ad Attic._, ii. 4, and the notes in the
Variorum edition).]

[Footnote 278: The character of Mithridates is only known to us from
his enemies. But his own memoirs, if the truth is here stated, prove
his cruel and vindictive character. He spared neither his friends nor
his own children. Among others he put to death his son Xiphares by
Stratonike to revenge himself on the mother for giving up the fort

[Footnote 279: See the Life of Sulla, c. 6. The registration of dreams
and their interpretation, that is the events which followed and were
supposed to explain them, were usual among the Greeks. There is still
extant one of these curious collections by Artemidorus Daldianus in
five books, entitled Oneirocritica, or The Interpretation of Dreams.
The fifth book of 'Results' contains ninety-five dreams of individuals
and the events which happened.]

[Footnote 280: See the Life of Lucullus, c. 18.]

[Footnote 281: Publius Rutilius Rufus was consul B.C. 105. He was
exiled in consequence of being unjustly convicted B.C. 92 at the time
when the Judices were chosen from the body of the Equites. He was
accused of Repetundæ and convicted and exiled. He retired to Smyrna,
where he wrote the history of his own times in Greek. All the
authorities state that he was an honest man and was unjustly
condemned. (Velleius Paterculus, ii. 13; Tacitus, _Agricola_, c. 1:
and the various passages in Orelli, _Onomasticon_, P. Rutilius

[Footnote 282: See the Life of Lucullus, c. 14.]

[Footnote 283: The strait that unites the Euxine to the Mæotis or Sea
of Azoff, was called the Bosporus, which name was also given to the
country on the European side of the strait, which is included in the
peninsula of the Crimea.]

[Footnote 284: See Dion Cassius, 37. c. 5.]

[Footnote 285: This is the Indian Ocean. The name first occurs in
Herodotus. It is generally translated the Red Sea, and so it is
translated by Kaltwasser. But the Red Sea was called the Arabian Gulf
by Herodotus. However, the term Erythræan Sea was sometimes used with
no great accuracy, and appears to have comprehended the Red Sea, which
is a translation of the term Erythræan, as the Greeks understood that
word ([Greek: erythros] ἐρυθρός, Red).]

[Footnote 286: Triarius, the legatus of Lucullus, had been defeated
three years before by Mithridates. See the Life of Lucullus, c. 35;
and Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 89).]

[Footnote 287: This mountain range is connected with the Taurus and
runs down to the coast of the Mediterranean, which it reaches at the
angle formed by the Gulf of Scanderoon.]

[Footnote 288: This campaign, as already observed in the notes to c.
36, is placed earlier by Appianus, but his chronology is confused and
incorrect. The siege of Jerusalem, which was accompanied with great
difficulty, is described by Dion Cassius (37. c. 15, &c.), and by
Josephus (_Jewish Wars_, xiv. 4). There was a great slaughter of the
Jews when the city was stormed.]

[Footnote 289: This country was Gordyene. (Dion Cassius, 37. c. 5.)]

[Footnote 290: This city, the capital of Syria, was built by Seleucus
Nicator and called Antiocheia after his father Antiochus. It is
situated in 36° 12' N. lat. on the south bank of the Orontes, a river
which enters the sea south of the Gulf of Scanderoon.]

[Footnote 291: The meaning of the original is obscure. The word is
[Greek: to imation] τὸ ιμάτιον, which ought to signify his vest or
toga. Some critics take it to mean a kind of handkerchief used by sick
persons and those of effeminate habits; and they say it was also used
by persons when travelling, as a cover for the head, which the Greeks
called Theristerium. The same word is used in the passage (c. 7),
where it is said that "Sulla used to rise from his seat as Pompeius
approached and take his vest from his head." Whatever may be the
meaning of the word here, Plutarch seems to say that this impudent
fellow would take his seat at the table before the guests had arrived
and leave his master to receive them.]

[Footnote 292: Drumann (_Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 53) observes
that "Plutarch does not say that Pompeius built his house near his
theatre, but that he built it in addition to his theatre and at the
same time, as Donatus had perceived, De Urbe Roma, 3, 8, in Græv.
Thes. T. 3, p. 695." But Drumann is probably mistaken. There is no
great propriety in the word [Greek: epholkion] ἐφόλκιον unless the
house was near the theatre, and the word [Greek: paretektênato]
παρετεκτήνατο rather implies 'proximity,' than 'in addition to.'

This was the first permanent theatre that Rome had. It was built
partly on the model of that of Mitylene and it was opened in the year
B.C. 55. This magnificent theatre, which would accommodate 40,000
people, stood in the Campus Martius. It was built of stone with the
exception of the scena, and ornamented with statues, which were placed
there under the direction of Atticus, who was a man of taste. Augustus
embellished the theatre, and he removed thither the statue of
Pompeius, which up to that time had stood in the Curia where Cæsar was
murdered. The scena was burnt down in the time of Tiberius, who began
to rebuild it; but it was not finished till the reign of Claudius.
Nero gilded the interior. The scena was again burnt in the beginning
of the reign of Titus, who restored it again. The scena was again
burnt in the reign of Philippus and a third time restored. (Drumann,
_Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 521; Dion Cassius 39. c. 88, and the
notes of Reimarus.)]

[Footnote 293: Petra, the capital of the Nabathæi, is about half way
between the southern extremity of the Dead Sea and the northern
extremity of the Ælanitic Gulf, the more eastern of the two northern
branches of the Red Sea. The ruins of Petra exist in the Wady Musa,
and have been visited by Burckhardt, Irby and Mangles, and last by
Laborde, who has given the most complete description of them in his
'Voyage de l'Arabie Pétrée,' Paris, 1830. The place is in the midst of
a desert, but has abundance of water. Its position made it an
important place of commerce in the caravan trade of the East; and it
was such in the time of Strabo, who states on the authority of his
friend Athonodorus that many Romans were settled there (p. 779). It
contains numerous tombs and a magnificent temple cut in the rock, a
theatre and the remains of houses.

The king against whom Pompeius was marching is named Aretas by Dion
Cassius (37. c. 15).]

[Footnote 294: The Pæonians were a Thracian people on the Strymon.
(Herodotus, v. 1.) It appears from Dion Cassius (49. c. 36) that the
Greeks often called the Pannonians by the name of Pæonians, which
Sintenis considers a reason for not altering the reading here into
Pannonians. Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 102) uses the name
Pæonians, though he means Pannonians.]

[Footnote 295: This is the Roman word. Compare Tacitus (_Annal._ i.
18): "congerunt cespites, exstruunt tribunal."]

[Footnote 296: The circumstances of the rebellion of Pharnakes and the
death of Mithridates are told by Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 110)
and Dion Cassius (37. c. 11). Mithridates died B.C. 63, in the year in
which Cicero was consul.

The text of the last sentence in this chapter is corrupt; and the
meaning is uncertain.]

[Footnote 297: [Greek: to nemesêton] τὸ νεμέσητον.]

[Footnote 298: The body of Mithridates was interred at Sinope.
Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 113) says that Pharnakes sent the dead
body of his father in a galley to Pompeius to Sinope, and also those
who had killed Manius Aquilius, and many hostages Greeks and
barbarians. There might be some doubt about the meaning of the words
'many corpses of members of the royal family' [Greek: polla sômata tôn
basilikôn] πολλα σώματα τῶν βασιλικῶν but Plutarch appears from the
context to mean dead bodies. Two of the daughters of Mithridates who
were with him when he died, are mentioned by Appianus (c. 111) as
having taken poison at the same time with their father. The poison
worked on them, but had no effect on the old man, who therefore
prevailed on a Gallic officer who was in his service to kill him.
(Compare Dion Cassius, 39. c. 13, 14.)]

[Footnote 299: He made it what the Romans called Libera Civitas, a
city which had its own jurisdiction and was free from taxes. Compare
the Life of Cæsar, c. 48.]

[Footnote 300: He was a native of Apamea in Syria, a Stoic, and a
pupil of Panætius. He was one of the masters of Cicero, who often
speaks of him and occasionally corresponded with him (Cicero, _Ad
Attic._ ii. 1). Cicero also mentions Hermagoras in his treatise De
Inventione (i. 6, and 9), and in the Brutus (c. 79).]

[Footnote 301: See the Life of Sulla, c. 6.]

[Footnote 302: She was the daughter of Q. Mucius Scævola, consul B.C.
95, and the third wife of Pompeius, who had three children by her. She
was not the sister of Q. Metellus Nepos and Q. Metellus Celer, as
Kaltwasser says, but a kinswoman. Cn. Pompeius and Sextus Pompeius
were the sons of Mucia. Cicero (_Ad Attic._ i. 12) speaks of the
divorce of Mucia and says that it was approved of; but he does not
assign the reason. C. Julius Cæsar (Suetonius, _Cæsar_, c. 50) is
named as the adulterer or one of them, and Pompeius called him his
Ægisthus. After her divorce in the year B.C. 62 Mucia married M.
Æmilius Scaurus, the brother of the second wife of Pompeius. Mucia
survived the battle of Actium (B.C. 31), and she was treated with
respect by Octavianus Cæsar (Dion Cassius, 51. c. 2; Drumann,
_Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 557).]

[Footnote 303: Here and elsewhere I have used Plutarch's word [Greek:
monarchia] μοναρχία, 'The government of one man,' by which he means
the Dictatorship, in some passages at least.]

[Footnote 304: He landed in Italy B.C. 62, during the consulship of D.
Junius Silanus and L. Licinius Murena. The request mentioned at the
beginning of c. 44 is also noticed in Plutarch's Life of Cato (c. 30).
M. Pupius Piso was one of the consuls for B.C. 61.]

[Footnote 305: This was L. Afranius, one of the legati of Pompeius,
who has often been mentioned. He was consul with Q. Metellus Celer
B.C. 60 (compare Dion Cassius, 37. c. 49). Cicero, who was writing to
Atticus at the time (_Ad Attic._ i. 17), speaks of the bribery at the
election of Afranius, and accuses Pompeius of being active on the
occasion. From this consulship Horatius (_Od._ ii. 1) dates the
commencement of the civil wars, for in this year was formed the
coalition between Cæsar, Pompeius, and Crassus. See the remark of
Cato, c. 47.]

[Footnote 306: Compare Appianus (_Mithridatic War_, c. 116) and
Dramann, _Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 485. When particular measures
of money are not mentioned, Plutarch, as usual with him, means Attic

[Footnote 307: The triumph of Pompeius was in B.C. 61 on his birthday
(Plinius 37. c. 2). Pompeius was born B.C. 106, and consequently he
was now entering on his forty-sixth year--Xylander (Holzmann)
preferred to read 'fifty' instead of 'forty.']

[Footnote 308: Cicero went into exile B.C. 58, and after the events
mentioned in chapter 47. Cæsar returned from his province of Iberia in
B.C. 60.]

[Footnote 309: See the Life of Cæsar, c. 14, as to the events
mentioned in this chapter and the following. Cæsar was consul B.C.

[Footnote 310: L. Calpurnius Piso and A. Gabinius were consuls B.C.
58, in the year in which Clodius was tribune and Cicero was exiled.]

[Footnote 311: As to this remark of Pompeius, compare the Life of
Lucullus, c. 38.]

[Footnote 312: Compare the Life of Cato, c. 34.]

[Footnote 313: A mark of an effeminate person. Compare the Life of
Cæsar, c. 4, which explains this passage.]

[Footnote 314: This event is told by Dion Cassius (39. c. 19), but as
Kaltwasser remarks he places it in B.C. 56, when Clodius was ædile and
Cn. Cornelius Lentulus Marcellinus and M. Marcius Philippus were
consuls. The trial was that of Milo De Vi, B.C. 56. Compare Cicero (Ad
Quintum Fratrem, ii. 3) and Rein (_Criminalrecht der Römer_, p. 758,

[Footnote 315: Q. Terentius Culleo was a tribunus plebis B.C. 58. He
is mentioned by Cicero (_Ad Attic._ iii. 15) and elsewhere.]

[Footnote 316: Cicero returned to Rome B.C. 57 in the consulship of P.
Cornelius Lentulus Spinther and Q. Cæcilius Metellus Nepos. See the
Life of Cicero, c. 33. He had returned to Rome before the trial
mentioned at the end of c. 48.]

[Footnote 317: Pompeius was made Præfectus Annonæ for five years.
There was a great scarcity at Rome, which was nothing unusual, and
dangerous riots (see the article CORN TRADE, ROMAN, 'Political
Dictionary,' by the author of this note). The appointment of Pompeius
is mentioned by Dion Cassius (39. c. 9, and the notes of Reimarus).
Cicero (_Ad Atticum_, iv. 1) speaks of the appointment of Pompeius.]

[Footnote 318: Ptolemæus Auletes had given large bribes to several
Romans to purchase their influence and to get himself declared a
friend and ally of the Romans; which was in fact to put himself under
their protection. His subjects were dissatisfied with him for various
reasons, and among others for the heavy taxes which he laid on them to
raise the bribe money. He made his escape from Egypt and was now in
Rome. The story is told at some length in Dion Cassius (39. c. 12,
&c.), and the matter of the king's restoration is discussed by Cicero
in several letters (_Ad Diversos_, i. 1-7) to this Spinther. The king
for the present did not get the aid which he wanted, and he retired to
Ephesus, where he lodged within the precincts of the temple of
Artemis, which was an ASYLUM. (See 'Political Dictionary,' art.
Asylum; and Strabo, p. 641.)]

[Footnote 319: A Greek historian of the time of Augustus. He was
originally a captive slave, but he was manumitted and admitted to the
intimacy of Augustus Cæsar. He was very free with his tongue, which at
last caused him to be forbidden the house of Augustus. (Seneca, _De
Ira_, iii. 23.) He burnt some of his historical writings, but not all
of them, for Plutarch here refers to his authority. Horatius (1 _Ep_.
19. v. 15) alludes to Timagenes. (See Suidas, [Greek: Timagenês]

[Footnote 320: See the Life of Cæsar, c. 15, and as to the conference
at Luca, c. 21. The conference took place B.C. 56, when Marcellinus
(c. 48, notes) was one of the consuls. Compare also the Life of
Crassus (c. 14, 15), and Dion Cassius, 39. c. 30, as to the trouble at
Rome at this time, and Appianus (_Civil Wars_, ii. 17).]

[Footnote 321: This is the meaning of the word [Greek: politikôteron]
πολιτικώτερον, which is generally mistranslated here and in other
parts of Plutarch. It is the translation of the Roman term
'civiliter.' (Tacitus, _Annal_. i 33, iii 76.)]

[Footnote 322: Life of Crassus, c. 15, notes.]

[Footnote 323: P. Vatinius, often mentioned by Cicero. (See Orelli,
_Onomasticon_, Vatinius.) Cicero's extant oration In Vatinium was
delivered B.C. 56.]

[Footnote 324: C. Trebonius, a friend of Cicero, several of whose
letters to him are extant. (Cicero, _Ad Divers._ x. 28; xii. 16; xv.
20, 21.) He was one of the conspirators against Cæsar; and Cicero
tells him (x. 28) that he was somewhat vexed with him that he saved
Antonius from the same fate. Trebonius was treacherously put to death
at Smyrna by Dolabella with circumstances of great cruelty B.C. 43.
(Dion Cassius, 47. c. 29.) In the notes to the life of Crassus, c. 16,
I have incorrectly called this Tribune Titus.]

[Footnote 325: Plutarch must mean that Crassus left Rome before the
expiration of his consulship B.C. 55; but the words [Greek: apallageis
tês hupateias] ἀπαλλαγεὶς τῆς ὑπατείας are in themselves doubtful.
(Life of Crassus, c. 16.)]

[Footnote 326: Drumann (_Geschichte Roms_, Pompeii, p. 524) has
diligently collected all the circumstances of this magnificent
exhibition. (See also Dion Cassius, 39. c. 38, and the references in
the notes of Reimarus.) The elephant-fight ([Greek: elphantomachia]
ἐλφαντομαχία) was a fight between the elephants and armed Gætulians.
There were eighteen elephants. The cries of the animals when they were
wounded moved the pity of the spectators. The elephants would not
enter the vessels when they were leaving Africa, till they received a
promise from their leaders that they should not he injured; the
treacherous treatment of them at the games was the cause of their loud
lamentations, in which they appealed to the deity against the
violation of the solemn promise. (Dion Cassius.) Cicero, who was not
fond of exhibitions of the kind, speaks with disgust of the whole
affair (_Ad Diversos_, vii. 1). The letter of Cicero, written at the
time, is valuable contemporary evidence. Various facts on the
exhibition of elephants at Rome are collected in the Library of
Entertaining Knowledge, _Menageries_, Elephant.

A rhinoceros was also exhibited at the games of Pompeius; and an
actress was brought on the stage, who had made her first appearance in
the consulship of C. Marius the younger, and Cn. Carbo B.C. 82, but
she made her appearance again in the time of Augustus, A.D. 9, in the
consulship of Poppæus, when she was 103 years old, 91 years after her
first appearance. (Plinius, _H.N_. vii. 49.) Drumann says, when
speaking of the games of Pompeius, "a woman of unusually advanced age
was brought forward;" but the words of Plinius "anus pro miraculo
reducta," apply to her last appearance. A woman of one-and-forty was
no uncommon thing then, nor is it now. The pointing in the common
texts is simply the cause of the blunder.]

[Footnote 327: See the Life of Crassus, c. 16, notes, Julia died B.C.
54, in the consulship of L. Domitius Ahenobarbus and Ap. Claudius
Pulcher (See the Life of Cæsar. c. 23.) Crassus lost his life B.C.

[Footnote 328: A quotation from the Iliad, xv. 189.]

[Footnote 329: Cn. Domitius Calvinus and M. Valerius Messala, the
consuls of B.C. 53, were not elected till seven months after the
proper time, so that there was during this time an anarchy [Greek:
anarchia] ἀναρχία, which is Plutarch's word). This term 'anarchy' must
be taken in its literal and primary sense of a time when there were no
magistrates, which would be accompanied with anarchy in the modern
sense of the term. Dion Cassius (40. c. 45) describes this period of
confusion. The translation in the text may lead to a misunderstanding
of Plutarch's meaning; it should be, "he allowed an anarchy to take
place." Kaltwasser's translation: "so liess er es zu einer Anarchie
kommen," is perfectly exact.]

[Footnote 330: In the year B.C. 52 in which year Clodius was killed.]

[Footnote 331: She was the daughter of Q. Cæcilius Metellus Pius
Scipio, who was the son of P. Cornelius Scipio Nasica and of Licinia,
the daughter of the orator L. Crassus. He was adopted (B.C. 64 or 63)
by the testament of Q. Cæcilius Metellus Pius, who fought in Spain
ngainst Sertorius; but his daughter must have been born before this,
as she bore the name Cornelia. Drumann (_Geschichte Roms_, Cæcilii, p.
49) thinks that the story of her attempting to destroy herself when
she heard of the death of her husband (Life of Pompeius, c. 74) is
suspicious, because she married Pompeius the year after. If Cornelia
were the only woman that was ever said to have done so, we might doubt
the story; but as she is not, we need not suspect it on that account.]

[Footnote 332: Corruption is [Greek: dorodokia] δοροδοκία in Plutarch,
'gift receiving,' and it ought to correspond to the Roman Peculatus.
But [Greek: dorodokia] δοροδοκία also means corruption by bribes.
Bribery is [Greek: dekasmos] δεκασμός in Plutarch, which is expressed
generally by the Roman Ambitus, and specially by the verb 'decuriare.'
(See Cicero's Oration Pro Cn. Plancio, Ed. Wunder.) The offence of
Scipio was Ambitus. (Dion Cassius, 40. c. 51, &c.; Appianus, _Civil
Wars_, ii. 24.) As to Roman Bribery, see the article BRIBERY,
'Political Dictionary,' by the author of this note, whose contribution
begins p. 416.]

[Footnote 333: These 360 Judices appear to have been chosen for the
occasion of these trials. (Velleius Pater. ii. 76; Goettling,
_Roemische Staatsverfassung_, p. 482.)]

[Footnote 334: T. Munatius Plancus Bursa, a tribune of the Plebs. In
B.C. 52 Milo and Clodius with their followers had an encounter in
which Clodius was killed. Tho people, with whom he was a favourite,
burnt his body in the Curia Hostilia, and the Curia with it. (Dion
Cassius, 40, c. 48.) Plancus was charged with encouraging this
disorder, and he was brought to trial. Cicero was his accuser; he was
condemned and exiled. (Cicero, _Ad Diversos_, vii. 2.)]

[Footnote 335: Plautius Hypsæus was not a consular. He had been the
quæstor of Pompeius. He and Scipio had been candidates for the
consulship this year, and were both charged with bribery. (Dion
Cassius, 40, c. 53.) Hypsæus was convicted.]

[Footnote 336: See the Life of Cæsar, c. 29. Pompeius had lent Cæsar
two legions (c. 52). Compare Dion Cassius, 40. c. 65, and Appianus,
_Civil Wars_, ii. 29. The illness of Pompeius and the return of the
legions from Gaul took place in the year B.C. 50. Appius Claudius (c.
57) was sent by the Senate to conduct the legions from Gaul. Dion
Cassius (40. c. 65) says that Pompeius had lent Cæsar only one legion,
but that Cæsar had to give up another also, inasmuch as Pompeius
obtained an order of the Senate that both he and Cæsar should give a
legion to Bibulus, who was in Syria, for the Parthian war. (Appianus,
_Civil Wars_, ii. 29; _Bell. Gall._ viii. 54.) Thus Pompeius in effect
gave up nothing, but Cæsar parted with two legions. The legions were
not sent to Syria, but both wintered in Capua. The consul C. Claudius
Marcellus (B.C. 50) gave both these legions to Pompeius.]

[Footnote 337: L. Æmilius Paulus was consul B.C. 50, with C. Claudius
Marcellus a violent opponent of Cæsar. He built the Basilica Pauli
(Appianus, _Civil Wars_, ii. 26). Basilica is a Greek word ([Greek:
basilikê] βασιλική); a basilica was used as a court of law, and a
place of business for merchants. The form of a Roman basilica is known
from the description of Vitruvius (v. 1), the ground-plan of two
Basilicæ at Rome, and that of Pompeii which is in better preservation.
Some of the great Roman churches are called Basilicæ, and in their
construction bear some resemblance to the antient Basilicæ. ('Penny
Cyclopædia,' _Basilica_.)]

[Footnote 338: C. Scribonius Curio. Compare the Life of M. Antonius,
c. 2. He was a man of ability, but extravagant in his habits (Dion
Cassius, 40. c. 60):--

    "Momentumque fuit mutatus Curio rerum,
    Gallorum captus spoliis et Cæsaris auro."--

    Lucanus, _Pharsalia_, iv. 819

As to the vote on the proposition of Curio, Appianus (_Civil Wars_,
ii. 30) agrees with Plutarch. Dion Cassius (40. c. 64: and 41. c. 2)
gives a different account of this transaction.]

[Footnote 339: C. Claudius Marcellus and L. Cornelius Lentulus Crus
were consuls for the year B.C. 49, in which the war broke out, This
Marcellus was the cousin of the consul Marcellus of the year B.C. 50,
who (Appianus, _Civil Wars_, ii. 30) presented Pompeius with a sword
when he commissioned him to fight against Cæsar. Plutarch appears (c.
58, 59) to mean the same Marcellus; but he has confounded them. The
Marcellus of c. 58 is the consul of B.C. 49; and the Marcellus of c.
59 is the consul of B.C. 50, according to Dion Cassius (40. c. 66 41.
c. 1, &c.) and Appianus.]

[Footnote 340: Cicero returned from his government of Cilicia B.C.

[Footnote 341: See the Life of Cæsar, c. 32.]

[Footnote 342: L. Volcatius Tullus who had been consul B.C. 66
('Consule Tullo'), Horatius (_Od._ iii. 8).]

[Footnote 343: The reply of Pompeius is given by Appianus (_Civil
Wars_, ii. 37). As to the confusion in Rome see Dion Cassius (42. c.
6-9); and the references in Clinton, _Fasti_, B.C. 49.]

[Footnote 344: Plutarch here omits the capture of Corfinium, which
took place before Cæsar entered Rome. See Dion Cassius (41. c. 10),
and the Life of Cæsar, c. 34.]

[Footnote 345: L. Metullus, of whom little is known. Kaltwasser makes
Cæsar say to Metellus, "It was not harder for him to say it than to do
it;" which has no sense in it. What Cæsar did say appears from the
Life of Cæsar, c. 35. Cæsar did not mean to say that it was as easy
for him to do it as to say it. He meant that it was hard for him to be
reduced to say such a thing; as to doing it, when he had said it, that
would be a light matter. Sintenis suspects that the text is not quite
right here. See the various readings and his proposed alteration; also
Cicero, _Ad Attic._ x. 4.]

[Footnote 346: Cæsar (_Civil War_, i. 25, &c.) describes the
operations at Brundisium and the escape ot Pompeius. Compare also Dion
Cassius (41. c. 12); Appianus (_Civil Wars_, ii. 39). The usual
passage from Italy to Greece was from Brundisium to Dyrrachium
(Durazzo), which in former times was called Epidamnus (Thucydides, i.
24; Appianus, _Civil Wars_, ii. 39).]

[Footnote 347: This does not appear in Cæsar's Civil War.]

[Footnote 348: This opinion of Cicero is contained in a letter to
Atticus (vii. 11). When Xerxes invaded Attica (B.C. 480), Themistokles
advised the Athenians to quit their city and trust to their ships. The
naval victory of Salamis justified his advice. In the Peloponnesian
War (B.C. 431) Perikles advised the Athenians to keep within their
walls and wait for the Cæsar invaders to retire from Attica for want
of supplies; in which also the result justified the advice of
Perikles. Cicero in his letters often complains of the want of
resolution which Pompeius displayed at this crisis.]

[Footnote 349: Plutarch means that Cæsar feared that Pompeius had
everything to gain if the war was prolonged.

In his Civil War (i. 24) Numerius is called Cneius Magius, 'Præfectus
fabrorum,' or head of the engineer department. Sintenis observes that
Oudendorp might have used this passage for the purpose of restoring
the true prænomen in Cæsar's text, 'Numerius' in place of 'Cneius.']

[Footnote 350: These vessels took their name from the Liburni, on the
coast of Illyricum. They were generally biremes, and well adapted for
sea manœuvres.]

[Footnote 351: A town in Macedonia west of the Thermaic Gulf or Bay of
Saloniki. It appears from this that Pompeius led his troops from the
coast of the Adriatic nearly to the opposite coast of Macedonia (Dion
Cassius, 41. c. 43). His object apparently was to form a junction with
the forces that Scipio and his son were sent to raise in the East (c.

[Footnote 352: The Romans were accustomed to such exercises as these
in the Campus Martius.

                     ------"cur apricum
    Oderit campum patiens pulveris atque solis?

       *       *       *       *       *

                     ------sæpe disco
    Sæpe trans finem jaculo nobilis expedito."--Horatius, _Od_. i. 8.

Compare the Life of Marius (34).

The Romans maintained their bodily vigour by athletic and military
exercises to a late period of life. The bath, swimming, riding, and
the throwing of the javelin were the means by which they maintained
their health and strength. A Roman commander at the age of sixty was a
more vigorous man than modern commanders at the like age generally

[Footnote 353: Pompeius passed the winter at Thessalonica (Saloniki)
on the Thermaic Gulf and on the Via Egnatia, which ran from Dyrrachium
to Thessalonica, and thence eastward. He had with him two hundred
senators. The consuls, prætors, and quæstors of the year B.C. 49 were
continued by the Senate at Thessalonica for the year B.C. 48 under the
names of Proconsuls, Proprætors, Proquæstors. Cæsar and P. Servillus
Isauricus were elected consuls at Rome for the year B.C. 48 (Life of
Cæsar, c. 37). The party of Pompeius could not appoint new magistrates
for want of the ceremony of a Lex Curiata (Dion Cassius, 41. c. 43).]

[Footnote 354: His name is Titus Labienus (Life of Cæsar, c. 34).
'Labeo' is a mere blunder of the copyists. Dion Cassius (41. c. 4)
gives the reasons for Labienus passing over to Pompeius. Labienus had
served Cæsar well in Gaul, and he is often mentioned in Cæsar's Book
on the Gallic War. He fell at the battle of Munda in Spain B.C. 45.
(See the Life of Cæsar, c. 34, 56.)]

[Footnote 355: M. Junius Brutus. See the Life of Brutus.]

[Footnote 356: Cicero was not in the Senate at Thessalonica, though he
had come over to Macedonia. (See the Life of Cicero, c. 38.)]

[Footnote 357: Tidius is not a Roman name. It should be Didius.]

[Footnote 358: The defeats of Afranius and Petreius in Iberia, in the
summer of B.C. 49, are told by Cæsar in his Civil War, i. 41-81.

Cæsar reached Brundisium at the close of the year B.C. 49. See the
remarks on the time in Clinton, _Fasti_, B.C. 49. Oricum or Oricus was
a town on the coast of Epirus, south of Apollonia.]

[Footnote 359: L. Vibillius Rufus appears to be the person intended.
He is often mentioned by Cæsar (_Civil War_, i. 15, 23, &c.); but as
the readings in Cæsar's text are very uncertain (Jubellius, Jubilius,
Jubulus) Sintenis has not thought it proper to alter the text of
Plutarch here.

'On the third day.' Cæsar (_Civil War_, iii. 10) says 'triduo
proximo," and the correction of Moses du Soul, [Greek: hêmera rhêtê]
ἡμέρα ῥητῆ, is therefore unnecessary. Pompeius had moved westward from
Thessalonica at the time when Rufus was sent to him, and was in
Candavia on his road to Apollonia and Dyrrachium (Cæsar, _Civil War_,
iii. 11).]

[Footnote 360: Pompeius returned to Dyrrachium, which it had been the
object of Cæsar to seize. As he had not accomplished this, Cæsar
posted himself on the River Apsus between Apollonia and Dyrrachium.
The fights in the neighbourhood of Dyrrachium are described by Cæsar
(_Civil War_, iii. 34, &c.).]

[Footnote 361: The Athamanes were on the borders of Epirus and
Thessalia. In place of the Athamanes the MSS. of Cæsar (_Civil War_,
iii. 78) have Acarnania, which, as Drumann says, must be a mistake in
the text of Cæsar.]

[Footnote 362: Q. Metellus Scipio, the father-in-law of Pompeius, who
had been appointed to the government of Syria by the Senate. Scipio
had now come to Thesaalia (Cæsar, _Civil War_, iii. 33, and 80).]

[Footnote 363: Cato was left with fifteen cohorts in Dyrrachium. See
the Life of Cato, c. 55; Dion Cassius (12. c. 10).]

[Footnote 364: Or Tusculanum, as Plutarch calls it, now Frascati,
about 12 miles S.E. of Rome, where Cicero had a villa.]

[Footnote 365: Lentulus Spinther, consul of B.C. 57, and L. Domitius
Ahenobarbus, consul B.C. 54. This affair is mentioned by Cæsar himself
(_Civil War_, iii. 83, &c.). We have the best evidence of the bloody
use that the party of Pompeius would have made of their victory is the
letters of Cicero himself (_Ad Atticum_, xi. 6). There was to be a
general proscription, and Rome was to see the times of Sulla revived.
But the courage and wisdom of one man defeated the designs of these
senseless nobles. Cæsar (c. 83) mentions their schemes with a
contemptuous brevity.]

[Footnote 366: The town of Pharsalus was situated near the Enipeus, in
one of the great plains of Thessalia, called Pharsalia. Cæsar (iii.
88) does not mention the place where the battle was fought. See
Appianus, _Civil Wars_, ii. 75.]

[Footnote 367: Pompeius had dedicated a temple at Rome to Venus
Victrix. The Julia (Iulia) Gens, to which Cæsar belonged, traced their
deecent from Venus through Iulus, the son of Æneas. (See the Life of
Cæsar, c. 42.)]

[Footnote 368: Cæsar does not mention this meteor in his Civil War.
See Life of Cæsar, c. 43, and Dion Cassius, 41. c. 61.]

[Footnote 369: A place in Thessalia north of Pharsalus where Titus
Quinctius Flaminius defeated King Philip of Macedonia, B.C. 197.]

[Footnote 370: [Greek: ton phoinikoun chitôna] τὸν φοινικοῦν χιτῶνα.
Shakspere has employed this in his Julius Cæsar, Act V. Sc. 1:

     "Their bloody sign of battle is hung out."

Plutarch means the Vexillum. He has expressed by his word ([Greek:
protheinai] προθεῖναι) the 'propono' of Cæsar (_Bell. Gall._ ii. 20;
_Bell. Hispan._ c. 28, _Bell. Alexandr._ c. 45). The 'hung out' is a
better translation than 'unfurled.']

[Footnote 371: Plutarch in this as in some other instances places the
Prænomen last, instead of first which he ought to do; but immediately
after he writes Lucius Domitius correctly. The error may be owing to
the copyists.

The order of the battle is described by Cæsar (_Civil War_, iii. 89).
Plutarch here and in the Life of Cæsar (c. 44) says that Pompeius
commanded the right, but Cæsar says that he was on the left. Domitius,
that is, L. Domitius Ahenobarbus (Consul B.C. 54), may have commanded
under him. Cn. Domitius Calvinus (Consul B.C. 53), whom Plutarch calls
Calvinus Lucius, commanded Cæsar's centre. The account of Appianus
(_Civil Wars_, ii. 76) does not agree with Cæsar's.]

[Footnote 372: See Cæsar B.C. (iii. 88), and Appianus (ii. 79), who
quotes Cæsar's letters.]

[Footnote 373: The whole number of Italian troops on both sides was
about 70,000, as Plutarch says in the next chapter. There were also
other troops on both sides (Appianus, _Civil Wars_, ii. 70). The
battle was fought on the ninth of August, B.C. 48, according to the
uncorrected calendar.]

[Footnote 374: Dion Cassius has some like reflections (41. c. 53-58);
and Appianus (ii. 77), who says that both the commanders-in-chief shed
tears; which we need not believe.]

[Footnote 375: Lucan, i. 6.]

[Footnote 376: Crassinius, in the Life of Cæsar, c. 44. Cæsar (iii.
91, 99) names him Crastinus. Compare Appianus (_Civil Wars_, ii. 82).
Crastinus received an honourable interment after the battle.]

[Footnote 377: The passage is from the Iliad, xi. 544.]

[Footnote 378: C. Asinius Pollio was a soldier, a poet, and an
historical writer. His history of the Civil Wars was comprised in
seventeen books. Appianus (_Civil Wars_, ii. 79) quotes this
circumstance from Pollio. Horatius (_Od._ ii. 1) addresses this
Pollio, and Virgilius in his fourth Eclogue. The first part of the ode
of Horatius contains an allusion to Pollio's historical work.]

[Footnote 379: Cæsar (iii. 96) describes the appearance of the camp of
Pompeius, and adds that his hungry soldiers found an entertainment
which their enemies had prepared for themselves.]

[Footnote 380: Pompeius passed by Larissa, the chief town of
Thessalia, on his road to the vale of Tempe, in which the river
Peneius flows between the mountain range of Olympus and Ossa. In
saying that Pompeius "let his horse go," I have used an expression
that may be misunderstood. Cæsar(iii. 96) will explain
it--"protinusque equo citato Larissam contendit," and he continued his
flight at the same rate.]

[Footnote 381: These were L. Lentulus Spinther, Consul B.C. 57, and
Lentulus Crus, Consul B.C. 49. Deiotarus was king or tetrarch of
Galatia in Asia Minor, and had come to the assistance of Pompeius with
a considerable force. Pompeius had given him Armenia the Less, and the
title of King. Cæsar after the battle of Pharsalus took Armenia from
him, but allowed him to retain the title of King.]

[Footnote 382: The verse is from Euripides. It is placed among the
Fragmenta Incerta CXIX. ed. Matthiæ.]

[Footnote 383: This town was near the mouth of the Strymon, a river of
Thrace, and out of the direct route to Lesbos. The reason of Pompeius
going there is explained by Cæsar (_Civil War_, iii. 102). Cornelia
was at Mitylene in Lesbos with Sextus, the younger son of Pompeius.]

[Footnote 384: Kratippus was a Peripatetic, and at this time the chief
of that sect. Cicero's son Marcus afterwards heard his lectures at
Athens (Cicero, _De Officiis_, i. 1), B.C. 44.

The last sentence of this chapter is somewhat obscure, and the
opinions of the critics vary as to the reading. See the note of

[Footnote 385: This city was on the coast of Pamphylia. It took its
name from Attalus Philadelphus, the king of Pergamum of that name, who
built it.

Lucanus (viii. 251) makes Pompeius first land at Phaselis in Lycia.]

[Footnote 386: Dion Cassius (43. c. 2) discusses this matter. He
thinks that Pompeius could never have thought of going to Parthia.
Compare Appianus (_Civil Wars_, ii. 83).]

[Footnote 387: This is the King Juba mentioned in the Life of Cæsar,
c. 52.]

[Footnote 388: This is Ptolemæus Dionysius, the last of his race, and
the son of the Ptolemæus Auletes mentioned in c. 49. Auletes had been
restored to his kingdom through the influence of Pompeius by A.
Gabinius B.C. 55.]

[Footnote 389: This Arsakes is called Hyrodes or Orodes in the Life of
Crassus (c. 18). Arsakes seems to have been a name common to the
Parthian kings, as the representatives of Arsakes, the founder of the
dynasty. Orodes had already refused his aid to Pompeius in the
beginning of the war, and put in chains Hirrus, who had been sent to
him. The Parthian demanded the cession of Syria, which Pompeius would
not consent to.]

[Footnote 390: Probably Seleukeia in Syria at the mouth of the

[Footnote 391: He was now thirteen years of age, and according to his
father's testament, he and his sister Kleopatra were to be joint kings
and to intermarry after the fashion of the Greek kings of Egypt. The
advisers of Ptolemæus had driven Kleopatra out of Egypt, and on the
news of her advancing against the eastern frontiers with an army, they
went out to meet her. Pelusium, on the eastern branch of the Nile, had
for many centuries been the strong point on this frontier. (Cæsar,
_Civil War_, iii. 103; Dion Cassius, 42. c. 3, &c.) Pompeius
approached the shore of Egypt with several vessels and about 2000

As to the circumstances in this chapter, compare Dion Cassius (42. c.
3), Appianus (_Civil Wars_, ii. 84), and Cæsar (_Civil War_, iii.
104). Cæsar simply mentions the assassination of Pompeius. He says no
more about it.]

[Footnote 392: The death of Pompeius is mentioned by Cicero (_Ad
Atticum_, xi. 6). As to his age, Drumann observes, "He was born B.C.
106, and was consequently 58 years old when he was killed, on the 29th
of September, or on the day before his birthday, about the time of the
autumnal equinox according to the unreformed calendar." (Lucanus, viii

[Footnote 393: He is called Cordus by Lucanus (viii. 715), and had
formerly been a quæstor of Pompeius.]


I. As both these men's lives are now before us, let us briefly
recapitulate them, observing as we do so the points in which they
differ from one another. These are as follows:--First, Pompeius
obtained his power and renown by the most strictly legitimate means,
chiefly by his own exertions when assisting Sulla in the liberation of
Italy; while Agesilaus obtained the throne in defiance of both human
and divine laws, for he declared Leotychides to be a bastard, although
his brother had publicly recognised him as his own son, and he also by
a quibble evaded the oracle about a lame reign.

Secondly, Pompeius both respected Sulla while he lived, gave his body
an honourable burial, in spite of Lepidus, when he died, and married
Sulla's daughter to his own son Faustus; while Agesilaus, on a
trifling pretext, disgraced and ruined Lysander. Yet Sulla gave
Pompeius nothing more than he possessed himself, whereas Lysander made
Agesilaus king of Sparta, and leader of the united armies of Greece.

Thirdly, the political wrong-doings of Pompeius were chiefly committed
to serve his relatives, Cæsar and Scipio; while Agesilaus saved
Sphodrias from the death which he deserved for his outrage upon the
Athenians merely to please his son, and vigorously supported Phœbidas
when he committed a similar breach of the peace against the Thebans.
And generally, we may say that while Pompeius only injured the Romans
through inability to refuse the demands of friends, or through
ignorance, Agesilaus ruined the Lacedæmonians by plunging them into
war with Thebes, to gratify his own angry and quarrelsome temper.

II. If it be right to attribute the disasters which befel either of
those men to some special ill-luck which attended them, the Romans had
no reason whatever to suspect any such thing of Pompeius; but
Agesilaus, although the Lacedæmonians well knew the words of the
oracle, yet would not allow them to avoid "a lame reign." Even if
Leotychides had been proved a thousand times to be a bastard, the
family of Eurypon could have supplied Sparta with a legitimate and
sound king, had not Lysander, for the sake of Agesilaus, deceived them
as to the true meaning of the oracle. On the other hand, we have no
specimen of the political ingenuity of Pompeius which can be compared
with that admirable device of Agesilaus, when he readmitted the
survivors of the battle of Leuktra to the privileges of Spartan
citizens, by permitting the laws to sleep for one day. Pompeius did
not even think it his duty to abide by the laws which he had himself
enacted, but broke them to prove his great power to his friends.
Agesilaus, when forced either to abolish the laws or to ruin his
friends, discovered an expedient by which the laws did his friends no
hurt, and yet had not to be abolished in order to save them. I also
place to the credit of Agesilaus that unparalleled act of obedience,
when on receiving a despatch from Sparta he abandoned the whole of his
Asian enterprise. For Agesilaus did not, like Pompeius, enrich the
state by his own exploits, but looking solely to the interests of his
country, he gave up a position of greater glory and power than any
Greek before or since ever held, with the single exception of

III. Looking at them from another point of view, I suppose that even
Xenophon himself would not think of comparing the number of the
victories won by Pompeius, the size of the armies which he commanded,
and that of those which he defeated, with any of the victories of
Agesilaus; although Xenophon has written so admirably upon other
subjects, that he seems to think himself privileged to say whatever he
pleases about the life of his favourite hero. I think also that the
two men differ much in their treatment of their enemies. The Greek
wished to sell the Thebans for slaves, and to drive the Messenians
from their country, although Thebes was the mother city of Sparta,
and the Messenians sprang from the same stock as the Lacedæmonians. In
his attempts to effect this, he all but lost Sparta herself, and did
lose the Spartan empire; while Pompeius even gave cities to be
inhabited by such of the Mediterranean pirates as abandoned that mode
of life; and when Tigranes the king of Armenia was in his power, he
did not lead him in his triumph, but chose rather to make him an ally
of Rome; observing, that he preferred an advantage which would last
for all time to the glory which only endured for a single day.

If, however, we place the chief glory of a general in feats of arms
and strategy, the Laconian will be found greatly to excel the Roman.
Agesilaus did not abandon Sparta even when it was attacked by seventy
thousand men, when he had but few troops with which to defend it, and
those too all disheartened by their recent defeat at Leuktra.
Pompeius, on hearing that Cæsar, with only five thousand three hundred
men, had taken a town in Italy, left Rome in terror, either yielding
to this small force like a coward, or else falsely supposing it to be
more numerous than it was. He carefully carried off his own wife and
children, but left the families of his partizans unprotected in Rome,
when he ought either to have fought for the city against Cæsar, or
else to have acknowledged him as his superior and submitted to him,
for Cæsar was both his fellow-countryman and his relative. Yet, after
having violently objected to the prorogation of Cæsar's term of office
as consul, he put it in his power to capture Rome itself, and to say
to Metellus that he regarded him and all the rest of the citizens as
prisoners of war.

IV. Agesilaus, when he was the stronger, always forced his enemy to
fight, and when weaker, always avoided a battle. By always practising
this, the highest art of a general, he passed through his life without
a single defeat; whereas Pompeius was unable to make use of his
superiority to Cæsar by sea, and was forced by him to hazard
everything on the event of a land battle; for as soon as Cæsar had
defeated him, he at once obtained possession of all Pompeius's
treasure, supplies, and command of the sea, without gaining which he
must inevitably have been defeated, even without a battle. Pompeius's
excuse for his conduct is, in truth, his severest condemnation. It is
very natural and pardonable for a young general to be influenced by
clamours and accusations of remissness and cowardice, so as to abandon
the course which he had previously decided upon as the safest; but
that the great Pompeius, of whom the Romans used to say that the camp
was his home, and that he only made an occasional campaign in the
senate house, at a time when his followers called the consuls and
generals of Rome traitors and rebels, and when they knew that he was
in possession of absolute uncontrolled power, and had already
conducted so many campaigns with such brilliant success as
commander-in-chief--that he should be moved by the scoffs of a
Favonius or a Domitius, and hazard his army and his life lest they
should call him Agamemnon, is a most discreditable supposition. If he
were so sensitive on the point of honour, he ought to have made a
stand at the very beginning, and fought a battle in defence of Rome,
not first to have retreated, giving out that he was acting with a
subtlety worthy of Themistokles himself, and then to have regarded
every day spent in Thessaly without fighting as a disgrace. The plain
of Pharsalia was not specially appointed by heaven as the arena in
which he was to contend with Cæsar for the empire of the world, nor
was he summoned by the voice of a herald either to fight or to avow
himself vanquished. There were many plains, and innumerable cities and
countries which his command of the sea would have enabled him to
reach, if he had wished to imitate Fabius Maximus, Marius, Lucullus,
or Agesilaus himself, who resisted the same kind of clamour at Sparta,
when his countrymen wished to fight the Thebans and protect their
native land; while in Egypt he endured endless reproaches, abuse, and
suspicion from Nektanebis because he forbade him to fight, and by
consistently carrying out his own judicious policy saved the Egyptians
against their will. He not only guided Sparta safely through that
terrible crisis, but was enabled to win a victory over the Thebans in
the city itself, which he never could have done had he yielded to the
entreaties of the Lacedæmonians to fight when their country was first
invaded. Thus it happened that Agesilaus was warmly praised by those
whose opinions he had overruled, while Pompeius made mistakes to
please his friends, and afterwards was reproached by them for what he
had done. Some historians tell us, however, that he was deceived by
his father-in-law, Scipio, who with the intention of embezzling and
converting to his own use the greater part of the treasure which
Pompeius brought from Asia, urged him to fight as soon as possible, as
though there was likely to be a scarcity of money. In these respects,
then, we have reviewed their respective characters.

V. Pompeius went to Egypt of necessity, fleeing for his life; but
Agesilaus went there with the dishonourable purpose of acting as
general for the barbarians, in order that he might employ the money
which he earned by that means in making war upon the Greeks. We blame
the Egyptians for their conduct to Pompeius; but the Egyptians have
equal reason to complain of the conduct of Agesilaus towards
themselves; for though Pompeius trusted them and was betrayed, yet
Agesilaus deserted the man who trusted him, and joined the enemies of
those whom he went out to assist.


I. In writing the Lives of Alexander the Great and of Cæsar the
conqueror of Pompeius, which are contained in this book, I have before
me such an abundance of materials, that I shall make no other preface
than to beg the reader, if he finds any of their famous exploits
recorded imperfectly, and with large excisions, not to regard this as
a fault. I am writing biography, not history; and often a man's most
brilliant actions prove nothing as to his true character, while some
trifling incident, some casual remark or jest, will throw more light
upon what manner of man he was than the bloodiest battle, the greatest
array of armies, or the most important siege. Therefore, just as
portrait painters pay most attention to those peculiarities of the
face and eyes, in which the likeness consists, and care but little for
the rest of the figure, so it is my duty to dwell especially upon
those actions which reveal the workings of my heroes' minds, and from
these to construct the portraits of their respective lives, leaving
their battles and their great deeds to be recorded by others.

II. All are agreed that Alexander was descended on his father's side
from Herakles through Karanus, and on his mother's from Æakus through

We are told that Philip and Olympias first met during their initiation
into the sacred mysteries at Samothrace, and that he, while yet a boy,
fell in love with the orphan girl, and persuaded her brother Arymbas
to consent to their marriage. The bride, before she consorted with her
husband, dreamed that she had been struck by a thunderbolt, from which
a sheet of flame sprang out in every direction, and then suddenly died
away. Philip himself some time after his marriage dreamed that he set
a seal upon his wife's body, on which was engraved the figure of a
lion. When he consulted the soothsayers as to what this meant, most of
them declared the meaning to be, that his wife required more careful
watching; but Aristander of Telmessus declared that she must be
pregnant, because men do not seal up what is empty, and that she would
bear a son of a spirited and lion-like disposition. Once Philip found
his wife asleep, with a large tame snake stretched beside her; and
this, it is said, quite put an end to his passion for her, and made
him avoid her society, either because he feared the magic arts of his
wife, or else from a religious scruple, because his place was more
worthily filled. Another version of this story is that the women of
Macedonia have been from very ancient times subject to the Orphic and
Bacchic frenzy (whence they were called Clodones and Mimallones), and
perform the same rites as do the Edonians and the Thracian women about
Mount Haemus, from which the word "threskeuein" has come to mean "to
be over-superstitious." Olympias, it is said, celebrated these rites
with exceeding fervour, and in imitation of the Orientals, and to
introduce into the festal procession large tame serpents,[394] which
struck terror into the men as they glided through the ivy wreaths and
mystic baskets which the women carried on their heads.

III. We are told that Philip after this portent sent Chairon of
Megalopolis to Delphi, to consult the god there, and that he delivered
an oracular response bidding him sacrifice to Zeus Ammon, and to pay
especial reverence to that god: warning him, moreover, that he would
some day lose the sight of that eye with which, through the chink of
the half-opened door, he had seen the god consorting with his wife in
the form of a serpent. The historian Eratosthenes informs us that when
Alexander was about to set out on his great expedition, Olympias told
him the secret of his birth, and bade him act worthily of his divine
parentage. Other writers say that she scrupled to mention the subject,
and was heard to say "Why does Alexander make Hera jealous of me?"

Alexander was born on the sixth day of the month Hekatombæon,[395]
which the Macedonians call Lous, the same day on which the temple of
Artemis at Ephesus was burned. This coincidence inspired Hegesias of
Magnesia to construct a ponderous joke, dull enough to have put out
the fire, which was, that it was no wonder that the temple of Artemis
was burned, since she was away from, it, attending to the birth of
Alexander.[396] All the Persian magi who were in Ephesus at the time
imagined that the destruction of the temple was but the forerunner of
a greater disaster, and ran through the city beating their faces and
shouting that on that day was born the destroyer of Asia. Philip, who
had just captured the city of Potidæa, received at that time three
messengers. The first announced that the Illyrians had been severely
defeated by Parmenio; the second that his racehorse had won a victory
at Olympia, and the third, that Alexander was born. As one may well
believe, he was delighted at such good news and was yet more overjoyed
when the soothsayers told him that his son, whose birth coincided with
three victories, would surely prove invincible.

IV. His personal appearance is best shown by the statues of Lysippus,
the only artist whom he allowed to represent him; in whose works we
can clearly trace that slight droop of his head towards the left, and
that keen glance of his eyes which formed his chief characteristics,
and which were afterwards imitated by his friends and successors.

Apelles, in his celebrated picture of Alexander wielding a
thunderbolt, has not exactly copied the fresh tint of his flesh, but
has made it darker and swarthier than it was, for we are told that his
skin was remarkably fair, inclining to red about the face and breast.
We learn from the memoirs of Aristoxenes, that his body diffused a
rich perfume, which scented his clothes, and that his breath was
remarkably sweet. This was possibly caused by the hot and fiery
constitution of his body; for sweet scents are produced, according to
Theophrastus, by heat acting upon moisture. For this reason the
hottest and driest regions of the earth produce the most aromatic
perfumes, because the sun dries up that moisture which causes most
substances to decay.

Alexander's warm temperament of body seems to have rendered him fond
of drinking, and fiery in disposition. As a youth he showed great
power of self-control, by abstaining from all sensual pleasures in
spite of his vehement and passionate nature; while his intense desire
for fame rendered him serious and high-minded beyond his years.

For many kinds of glory, however, Alexander cared little; unlike his
father Philip, who prided himself on his oratorical powers, and used
to record his victories in the chariot races at Olympia upon his
coins. Indeed, when Alexander's friends, to try him, asked him whether
he would contend in the foot race at Olympia, for he was a remarkably
swift runner, he answered, "Yes, if I have kings to contend with." He
seems to have been altogether indifferent to athletic exercises; for
though he gave more prizes than any one else to be contended for by
dramatists, flute players, harp players, and even by rhapsodists,[397]
and though he delighted in all manner of hunting and cudgel playing,
he never seems to have taken any interest in the contests of boxing or
the pankratium.[398] When ambassadors from the King of Persia arrived
in Macedonia, Philip was absent, and Alexander entertained them. His
engaging manners greatly charmed them, and he became their intimate
friend. He never put any childish questions to them, but made many
enquiries about the length of the journey from the sea coast to the
interior of Persia, about the roads which led thither, about the king,
whether he was experienced in war or not, and about the resources and
military strength of the Persian empire, so that the ambassadors were
filled with admiration, and declared that the boasted subtlety of
Philip was nothing in comparison with the intellectual vigour and
enlarged views of his son. Whenever he heard of Philip's having taken
some city or won some famous victory, he used to look unhappy at the
news, and would say to his friends, "Boys, my father will forestall us
in everything; he will leave no great exploits for you and me to
achieve." Indeed, he cared nothing for pleasure or wealth, but only
for honour and glory; and he imagined that the more territory he
inherited from his father, the less would be left for him to conquer.
He feared that his father's conquests would be so complete, as to
leave him no more battles to fight, and he wished to succeed, not to a
wealthy and luxurious, but to a military empire, at the head of which
he might gratify his desire for war and adventure.

His education was superintended by many nurses, pedagogues, and
teachers, the chief of whom was Leonidas, a harsh-tempered man, who
was nearly related to Olympias. He did not object to the title of
pedagogue,[399] thinking that his duties are most valuable and
honourable, but, on account of his high character and relationship to
Alexander, was generally given the title of tutor by the others. The
name and office of pedagogue was claimed by one Lysimachus, an
Akarnanian by birth, and a dull man, but who gained the favour of
Alexander by addressing him as Achilles, calling himself Phœnix, and
Philip, Peleus.

VI. When Philoneikus the Thessalian brought the horse Boukephalus[400]
and offered it to Philip for the sum of thirteen talents, the king and
his friends proceeded to some level ground to try the horse's paces.
They found that he was very savage and unmanageable, for he allowed no
one to mount him, and paid no attention to any man's voice, but
refused to allow any one to approach him. On this Philip became
angry, and bade them take the vicious intractable brute away.
Alexander, who was present, said, "What a fine horse they are ruining
because they are too ignorant and cowardly to manage him." Philip at
first was silent, but when Alexander repeated this remark several
times, and seemed greatly distressed, he said, "Do you blame your
elders, as if you knew more than they, or were better able to manage a
horse?" "This horse, at any rate," answered Alexander, "I could manage
better than any one else." "And if you cannot manage him," retorted
his father, "what penalty will you pay for your forwardness?" "I will
pay," said Alexander, "the price of the horse."

While the others were laughing and settling the terms of the wager,
Alexander ran straight up to the horse, took him by the bridle, and
turned him to the sun; as it seems he had noticed that the horse's
shadow dancing before his eyes alarmed him and made him restive. He
then spoke gently to the horse, and patted him on the back with his
hand, until he perceived that he no longer snorted so wildly, when,
dropping his cloak, he lightly leaped upon his back. He now steadily
reined him in, without violence or blows, and as he saw that the horse
was no longer ill-tempered, but only eager to gallop, he let him go,
boldly urging him to full speed with his voice and heel.

Philip and his friends were at first silent with terror; but when he
wheeled the horse round, and rode up to them exulting in his success,
they burst into a loud shout. It is said that his father wept for joy,
and, when he dismounted, kissed him, saying, "My son, seek for a
kingdom worthy of yourself: for Macedonia will not hold you."

VII. Philip, seeing that his son was easily led, but could not be made
to do anything by force, used always to manage him by persuasion, and
never gave him orders. As he did not altogether care to entrust his
education to the teachers whom he had obtained, but thought that it
would be too difficult a task for them, since Alexander required, as
Sophokles says of a ship:

     "Stout ropes to check him, and stout oars to guide."

he sent for Aristotle, the most renowned philosopher of the age, to
be his son's tutor, and paid him a handsome reward for doing so. He
had captured and destroyed Aristotle's native city of Stageira; but
now he rebuilt it, and repeopled it, ransoming the citizens, who had
been, sold for slaves, and bringing back those who were living in
exile. For Alexander and Aristotle he appointed the temple and grove
of the nymphs, near the city of Mieza, as a school-house and dwelling;
and there to this day are shown the stone seat where Aristotle sat,
and the shady avenues where he used to walk. It is thought that
Alexander was taught by him not only his doctrines of Morals and
Politics, but also those more abstruse mysteries which are only
communicated orally and are kept concealed from the vulgar: for after
he had invaded Asia, hearing that Aristotle had published some
treatises on these subjects, he wrote him a letter in which he
defended the practice of keeping these speculations secret in the
following words:--

"Alexander to Aristotle wishes health. You have not done well in
publishing abroad those sciences which should only be taught by word
of mouth. For how shall we be distinguished from other men, if the
knowledge which we have acquired be made the common property of all? I
myself had rather excel others in excellency of learning than in
greatness of power. Farewell."

To pacify him, Aristotle wrote in reply that these doctrines were
published, and yet not published: meaning that his treatise on
Metaphysics was only written for those who had been instructed in
philosophy by himself, and would be quite useless in other hands.

VIII. I think also that Aristotle more than any one else implanted a
love of medicine in Alexander, who was not only fond of discussing the
theory, but used to prescribe for his friends when they were sick, and
order them to follow special courses of treatment and diet, as we
gather from his letters. He was likewise fond of literature and of
reading, and we are told by Onesikritus that he was wont to call the
Iliad a complete manual of the military art, and that he always
carried with him Aristotle's recension of Homer's poems, which is
called 'the casket copy,' and placed it under his pillow together
with his dagger. Being without books when in the interior of Asia, he
ordered Harpalus to send him some. Harpalus sent him the histories of
Philistus, several plays of Euripides, Sophokles, and Æschylus, and
the dithyrambic hymns of Telestus and Philoxenus.

Alexander when a youth used to love and admire Aristotle more even
than his father, for he said that the latter had enabled him to live,
but that the former had taught him to live well. He afterwards
suspected him somewhat; yet he never did him any injury, but only was
not so friendly with him as he had been, whereby it was observed that
he no longer bore him the good-will he was wont to do. Notwithstanding
this, he never lost that interest in philosophical speculation which
he had acquired in his youth, as it proved by the honours which he
paid to Anaxarchus, the fifty talents which he sent as a present to
Xenokrates, and the protection and encouragement which he gave to
Dandamris and Kalanus.

IX. When Philip was besieging Byzantium he left to Alexander, who was
then only sixteen years old, the sole charge of the administration of
the kingdom of Macedonia, confirming his authority by entrusting to
him his own signet.[401] He defeated and subdued the Mædian[402]
rebels, took their city, ejected its barbarian inhabitants, and
reconstituted it as a Grecian colony, to which he gave the name of

He was present at the battle against the Greeks at Chæronea, and it is
said to have been the first to charge the Sacred Band of the Thebans.
Even in my own time, an old oak tree used to be pointed out, near the
river Kephissus,[403] which was called Alexander's oak, because his
tent was pitched beside it. It stands not far from the place where the
Macedonian corpses were buried after the battle. Philip, as we may
imagine, was overjoyed at these proofs of his son's courage and
skill, and nothing pleased him more than to hear the Macedonians call
Alexander their king, and himself their general. Soon, however, the
domestic dissensions produced by Philip's amours and marriages caused
an estrangement between them, and the breach was widened by Olympias,
a jealous and revengeful woman, who incensed Alexander against his
father. But what especially moved Alexander was the conduct of Attalus
at the marriage feast of his niece Kleopatra. Philip, who was now too
old for marriage, had become enamoured of this girl, and after the
wedding, Attalus in his cups called upon the Macedonians to pray to
the gods that from the union of Philip and Kleopatra might be born a
legitimate heir to the throne.

Enraged at these words, Alexander exclaimed, "You villain, am I then a
bastard?" and threw a drinking cup at him. Philip, seeing this, rose
and drew his sword to attack Alexander; but fortunately for both he
was so excited by drink and rage that he missed his footing and fell
headlong to the ground. Hereupon Alexander mocking him observed, "This
is the man who was preparing to cross from Europe to Asia, and has
been overthrown in passing from one couch[404] to another."

After this disgraceful scene, Alexander, with his mother Olympias,
retired into Epirus, where he left her, and proceeded to the country
of the Illyrians. About the same time Demaratus of Corinth, an old
friend of the family, and privileged to speak his mind freely, came on
a visit to Philip. After the first greetings were over, Philip
enquired whether the states of Greece agreed well together. "Truly,
King Philip," answered Demaratus, "it well becomes you to show an
interest in the agreement of the Greeks, after you have raised such
violent quarrels in your own family."

These words had such an effect upon Philip that Demaratus was able to
prevail upon him to make his peace with Alexander and to induce him to

X. Yet when Pixodarus, the satrap of Karia, hoping to connect himself
with Philip, and so to obtain him as an ally, offered his eldest
daughter in marriage to Arrhidæus, Philip's natural son, and sent
Aristokrites to Macedonia to conduct the negotiations, Olympias and
her friends again exasperated Alexander against his father by pointing
out to him that Philip, by arranging this splendid marriage for
Arrhidæus, and treating him as a person of such great importance, was
endeavouring to accustom the Macedonians to regard him as the heir to
the throne. Alexander yielded to these representations so far as to
send Thessalus, the tragic actor, on a special mission to Pixodarus in
Karia, to assure him that he ought to disregard Arrhidæus, who was
illegitimate, and foolish to boot, and that it was to Alexander that
he ought to offer the hand of his daughter.

Pixodarus was much more eager to accept this proposal than the former,
but Philip one day hearing that Alexander was alone in his chamber,
went thither with Philotas, the son of Parmenio, an intimate friend,
and bitterly reproached him, pointing out how unworthy it was of his
high birth and glorious position to stoop to marry the daughter of a
mere Karian,[405] and of a barbarian who was a subject of the King of

Upon this he wrote to the Corinthians to send him Thessalus in chains,
and also banished out of his kingdom Harpalus, Nearchus, Erigyius, and
Ptolemæus, all of whom Alexander afterwards brought back and promoted
to great honours.

Shortly after this, Pausanias was grossly insulted by the contrivance
of Attalus and Kleopatra, and, as he could not obtain amends for what
he suffered, assassinated Philip. We are told that most men laid the
blame of this murder upon Queen Olympias, who found the young man
smarting from the outrage which had been committed upon him, and urged
him to avenge himself, while some accused Alexander himself. It is
said that when Pausanias came to him and complained of his treatment,
Alexander answered him by quoting the line from the Medea of
Euripides, in which she declares that she will be revenged upon

     "The guardian, and the bridegroom, and the bride,"

alluding to Attalus, Philip, and Kleopatra.

However this may be, it is certain that he sought out and punished all
who were concerned in the plot, and he expressed his sorrow on
discovering that during his own absence from the kingdom, Kleopatra
had been cruelly tortured and put to death by his mother Olympias.

XI. At the age of twenty he succeeded to the throne of Macedonia, a
perilous and unenviable inheritance: for the neighbouring barbarian
tribes chafed at being held in bondage, and longed for the rule of
their own native kings; while Philip, although he had conquered Greece
by force of arms, yet had not had time to settle its government and
accustom it to its new position. He had overthrown all constituted
authority in that country, and had left men's minds in an excited
condition, eager for fresh changes and revolutions. The Macedonians
were very sensible of the dangerous crisis through which they were
passing, and hoped that Alexander would refrain as far as possible
from interfering in the affairs of Greece, deal gently with the
insurgent chiefs of his barbarian subjects, and carefully guard
against revolutionary outbreaks. He, however, took quite a different
view of the situation, conceiving it to be best to win safety by
audacity, and carrying things with a high hand, thinking that if he
showed the least sign of weakness, his enemies would all set upon him
at once. He crushed the risings of the barbarians by promptly marching
through their country as far as the river Danube, and by winning a
signal victory over Syrmus, the King of the Triballi. After this, as
he heard that the Thebans had revolted, and that the Athenians
sympathised with them, he marched his army straight through
Thermopylæ, with the remark that Demosthenes, who had called him a boy
while he was fighting the Illyrians and Triballi, and a youth while he
was marching through Thessaly, should find him a man when he saw him
before the gates of Athens. When he reached Thebes, he gave the
citizens an opportunity to repent of their conduct, only demanding
Phœnix and Prothytes to be given up to him, and offering the rest a
free pardon if they would join him. When, however, the Thebans in
answer to this, demanded that he should give up Philotas and Antipater
to them, and called upon all who were willing to assist in the
liberation of Greece to come and join them, he bade his Macedonians
prepare for battle.

The Thebans, although greatly outnumbered, fought with superhuman
valour; but they were taken in the rear by the Macedonian garrison,
who suddenly made a sally from the Kadmeia, and the greater part of
them were surrounded and fell fighting. The city was captured,
plundered and destroyed. Alexander hoped by this terrible example to
strike terror into the other Grecian states, although he put forward
the specious pretext that he was avenging the wrongs of his allies;
for the Platæans and Phokians had made some complaints of the conduct
of the Thebans towards them. With the exception of the priests, the
personal friends and guests of the Macedonians, the descendants of the
poet Pindar, and those who had opposed the revolt, he sold for slaves
all the rest of the inhabitants, thirty thousand in number. More than
six thousand men perished in the battle.

XII. Amidst the fearful scene of misery and disorder which followed
the capture of the city, certain Thracians broke into the house of one
Timoklea, a lady of noble birth and irreproachable character. Their
leader forcibly violated her, and then demanded whether she had any
gold or silver concealed. She said that she had, led him alone into
the garden, and, pointing to a well, told him that when the city was
taken she threw her most valuable jewels into it. While the Thracian
was stooping over the well trying to see down to the bottom, she came
behind, pushed him in, and threw large stones upon him until he died.
The Thracians seized her, and took her to Alexander, where she proved
herself a woman of courage by her noble and fearless carriage, as she
walked in the midst of her savage captors. The king enquired who she
was, to which she replied she was the sister of Theagenes, who fought
against Philip to protect the liberty of Greece, and who fell leading
on the Thebans at Chæronea. Alexander, struck by her answer, and
admiring her exploit, gave orders that she and her children should be
set at liberty.

XIII. Alexander came to terms with the Athenians, although they had
expressed the warmest sympathy for the Thebans, omitting the
performance of the festival of Demeter, out of respect for their
misfortunes, and giving a kindly welcome to all the fugitives who
reached Athens. Either he had had his fill of anger, like a sated
lion, or possibly he wished to perform some signal act of mercy by way
of contrast to his savage treatment of Thebes. Be this as it may, he
not only informed the Athenians that he had no grounds of quarrel with
them, but even went so far as to advise them to watch the course of
events with care, since, if anything should happen to him, they might
again become the ruling state in Greece. In after times, Alexander
often grieved over his harsh treatment of the Thebans, and the
recollection of what he had done made him much less severe to others.
Indeed, he always referred his unfortunate drunken quarrel with
Kleitus, and the refusal of the Macedonian soldiers to invade India,
by which they rendered the glory of his great expedition incomplete,
to the anger of Dionysius,[406] who desired to avenge the fate of his
favourite city. Moreover, of the Thebans who survived the ruin of
their city, no one ever asked any favour of Alexander without its
being granted. This was the manner in which Alexander dealt with

XIV. The Greeks after this assembled at Corinth and agreed to invade
Persia with Alexander for their leader. Many of their chief statesmen
and philosophers paid him visits of congratulation, and he hoped that
Diogenes of Sinope, who was at that time living at Corinth, would do
so. As he, however, paid no attention whatever to Alexander and
remained quietly in the suburb called Kraneium, Alexander himself went
to visit him. He found him lying at full length, basking in the sun.
At the approach of so many people, he sat up, and looked at Alexander.
Alexander greeted him, and enquired whether he could do anything for
him. "Yes," answered Diogenes, "you can stand a little on one side,
and not keep the sun off me." This answer is said to have so greatly
surprised Alexander, and to have filled him with such a feeling of
admiration for the greatness of mind of a man who could treat him with
such insolent superiority, that when he went away, while all around
were jeering and scoffing he said, "Say what you will; if I were not
Alexander, I would be Diogenes."

Desiring to consult the oracle of Apollo concerning his campaign, he
now proceeded to Delphi. It chanced that he arrived there on one of
the days which are called unfortunate, on which no oracular responses
can be obtained. In spite of this he at once sent for the chief
priestess, and as she refused to officiate and urged that she was
forbidden to do so by the law, he entered the temple by force and
dragged her to the prophetic tripod. She, yielding to his persistence,
said, "You are irresistible, my son." Alexander, at once, on hearing
this, declared that he did not wish for any further prophecy, but that
he had obtained from her the response which he wished for. While he
was preparing for his expedition, among many other portents, the
statue of Orpheus at Loibethra, which is made of cypress-wood, was
observed to be covered with sweat. All were alarmed at this omen, but
Aristander bade them take courage, as it portended that Alexander
should perform many famous acts, which would cause poets much trouble
to record.

XV. The number of his army is variously stated by different
authorities, some saying that it amounted to thirty thousand foot and
four thousand horse, while others put the whole amount so high as
forty-three thousand foot and five thousand horse. To provide for this
multitude, Aristobulus relates that he possessed only seventy talents,
while Douris informs us that he had only provisions for thirty days,
and Onesikritus declares that he was in debt to the amount of two
hundred talents. Yet although he started with such slender resources,
before he embarked he carefully enquired into the affairs of his
friends, and made them all ample presents, assigning to some of them
large tracts of land, and to others villages, the rents of houses, or
the right of levying harbour dues. When he had almost expended the
whole of the revenues of the crown in this fashion, Perdikkas enquired
of him, "My king, what have you reserved for yourself?" "My hopes,"
replied Alexander. "Then," said Perdikkas, "are we who go with you not
to share them?" and he at once refused to accept the present which had
been offered to him, as did several others. Those, however, who would
receive his gifts, or who asked for anything, were rewarded with a
lavish hand, so that he distributed among them nearly all the revenues
of Macedonia; so confident of success was he when he set out. When he
had crossed the Hellespont he proceeded to Troy, offered sacrifice to
Athena, and poured libations to the heroes who fell there. He anointed
the column which marks the tomb of Achilles with fresh oil, and after
running round it naked with his friends, as is customary, placed a
garland upon it, observing that Achilles was fortunate in having a
faithful friend while he lived, and a glorious poet to sing of his
deeds after his death. While he was walking through the city and
looking at all the notable things, he was asked whether he wished to
see the harp which had once belonged to Paris. He answered, that he
cared nothing for it, but that he wished to find that upon which
Achilles used to play when he sang of the deeds of heroes.

XVI. Meanwhile the generals of Darius had collected a large army, and
posted it at the passage of the river Granikus, so that it was
necessary for Alexander to fight a battle in order to effect so much
as an entrance into Asia. Most of the Greek generals were alarmed at
the depth and uneven bed of the river, and at the rugged and broken
ground on the farther bank, which they would have to mount in the face
of the enemy. Some also raised a religious scruple, averring that the
Macedonian kings never made war during the month Daisius. Alexander
said that this could be easily remedied, and ordered that the second
month in the Macedonian calendar should henceforth be called
Artemisium. When Parmenio besought him not to risk a battle, as the
season was far advanced, he said that the Hellespont would blush for
shame if he crossed it, and then feared to cross the Granikus, and at
once plunged into the stream with thirteen squadrons of cavalry. It
seemed the act of a desperate madman rather than of a general to ride
thus through a rapid river, under a storm of missiles, towards a steep
bank where every position of advantage was occupied by armed men. He,
however, gained the farther shore, and made good his footing there,
although with great difficulty on account of the slippery mud. As soon
as he had crossed, and driven away those who had opposed his passage,
he was charged by a mass of the enemy, and forced to fight, pell-mell,
man to man, before he could put those who had followed him over into
battle array. The enemy came on with a shout, and rode straight up to
the horses of the Macedonians, thrusting at them with spears, and
using swords when their spears were broken. Many of them pressed round
Alexander himself, who was made a conspicuous figure by his shield and
the long white plume which hung down on each side of his helmet. He
was struck by a javelin in the joint of his corslet, but received no
hurt. Rhœsakes and Spithridates, two of the Persian generals, now
attacked him at once. He avoided the charge of the latter, but broke
his spear against the breastplate of Rhœsakes, and was forced to
betake him to his sword. No sooner had they closed together than
Spithridates rode up beside him, and, standing up in his stirrups,
dealt him such a blow with a battle-axe, as cut off one side of his
plume, and pierced his helmet just so far as to reach his hair with
the edge of the axe. While Spithridates was preparing for another
blow, he was run through by black Kleitus with a lance, and at the
same moment Alexander with his sword laid Rhœsakes dead at his feet.
During this fierce and perilous cavalry battle, the Macedonian
phalanx[407] crossed the river, and engaged the enemy's infantry
force, none of which offered much resistance except a body of
mercenary Greeks in the pay of Persia. These troops retired to a small
rising ground, and begged for quarter. Alexander, however, furiously
attacked them by riding up to them by himself, in front of his men.

He lost his horse, which was killed by a sword-thrust, and it is said
that more of the Macedonians perished in that fight, and that more
wounds were given and received, than in all the rest of the battle, as
they were attacking desperate men accustomed to war.

The Persians are said to have lost twenty thousand infantry, and two
thousand five hundred cavalry. In the army of Alexander, Aristobulus
states the total loss to have been thirty-four men, nine of whom were
foot soldiers. Alexander ordered that each of these men should have
his statue made in bronze by Lysippus; and wishing to make the Greeks
generally partakers of his victory, he sent the Athenians three
hundred captured shields, and on the other spoils placed the following
vainglorious inscription:[408] "Alexander, the son of Philip, and the
Greeks, all but the Lacedæmonians, won these spoils from the
barbarians of Asia." As for the golden drinking-cups, purple hangings,
and other plunder of that sort, he sent it nearly all to his mother,
reserving only a few things for himself.

XVII. This victory wrought a great change in Alexander's position.
Several of the neighbouring states came and made their submission to
him, and even Sardis itself, the chief town in Lydia, and the main
station of the Persians in Asia Minor, submitted without a blow. The
only cities which still resisted him, Halikarnassus and Miletus, he
took by storm, and conquered all the adjacent territory, after which
he remained in doubt as to what to attempt next; whether to attack
Darius at once and risk all that he had won upon the issue of a single
battle, or to consolidate and organise his conquests on the coast of
Asia Minor, and to gather new strength for the final struggle. It is
said that at this time a spring in the country of Lykia, near the city
of Xanthus, overflowed, and threw up from its depths a brazen tablet,
upon which, in ancient characters, was inscribed a prophecy that the
Persian empire should be destroyed by the Greeks. Encouraged by this
portent, he extended his conquests along the sea coast as far as
Phœnicia and Kilikia. Many historians dwelt with admiration on the
good fortune of Alexander, in meeting with such fair weather and such
a smooth sea during his passage along the stormy shore of Pamphylia,
and say that it was a miracle that the furious sea, which usually
dashed against the highest rocks upon the cliffs, fell calm for him.
Menander alludes to this in one of his plays.

    "Like Alexander, if I wish to meet
    A man, at once I find him in the street;
    And, were I forced to journey o'er the sea,
    The sea itself would calm its waves for me."

Alexander himself, however, in his letters, speaks of no such miracle,
but merely tells us that he started from Phaselis, and passed along
the difficult road called Klimax, or the Ladder.[409] He spent some
time in Phaselis, and while he was there, observing in the
market-place a statue of Theodektes, a philosopher, who had recently
died, he made a procession to it one day after dinner, and crowned it
with flowers, as a sportive recognition of what he owed to Theodektes,
with whose philosophical writings Aristotle had made him familiar.

XVIII. After this he put down a revolt among the Pisidians, and
conquered the whole of Phrygia. On his arrival at Gordium, which is
said to have been the capital of King Midas of old, he was shown the
celebrated chariot there, tied up with a knot of cornel-tree bark.
Here he was told the legend, which all the natives believed, that
whoever untied that knot was destined to become lord of all the world.
Most historians say that as the knot was tied with a strap whose ends
could not be found, and was very complicated and intricate, Alexander,
despairing of untying it, drew his sword and cut through the knot,
thus making many ends appear. But Aristobulus tells us that he easily
undid it by pulling out of the pole the pin to which the strap was
fastened, and then drawing off the yoke itself from the pole.

He now prevailed upon the people of Paphlagonia and Kappadokia to join
him, and also was encouraged in his design of proceeding farther into
the interior by receiving intelligence of the death of Memnon, the
general to whom Darius had entrusted the defence of the sea coast, who
had already caused him much trouble, and had offered a most stubborn
resistance to him. Darius, too, came from Susa, confident in the
numbers of his army, for he was at the head of six hundred thousand
men, and greatly encouraged by a dream upon which the Magi had put
rather a strained interpretation in order to please him. He dreamed
that he saw the Macedonian phalanx begirt with flame, and that
Alexander, dressed in a courier's cloak like that which he himself had
worn before he became king, was acting as his servant. Afterwards,
Alexander went into the temple of Belus, and disappeared. By this
vision the gods probably meant to foretell that the deeds of the
Macedonians would be brilliant and glorious, and that Alexander after
conquering Asia, just as Darius had conquered it when from a mere
courier he rose to be a king, would die young and famous.

XIX. Darius was also much encouraged by the long inaction of Alexander
in Kilikia. This was caused by an illness, which some say arose from
the hardships which he had undergone, and others tell us was the
result of bathing in the icy waters of the Kydnus. No physician dared
to attend him, for they all thought that he was past the reach of
medicine, and dreaded the anger of the Macedonians if they proved
unsuccessful. At last Philip, an Akarnanian, seeing that he was
dangerously ill, determined to run the risk, as he was his true
friend, and thought it his duty to share all his dangers. He
compounded a draught for him, and persuaded him to drink it, by
telling him that it would give him strength and enable him to take the
field. At this time Parmenio sent him a letter from the camp, bidding
him beware of Philip, who had been bribed to poison him by Darius with
rich presents, and the offer of his own daughter in marriage.
Alexander read the letter, and showed it to no one, but placed it
under his pillow. At the appointed hour, Philip and his friends
entered the room, bringing the medicine in a cup. Alexander took the
cup from him, and gave him the letter to read, while he firmly and
cheerfully drank it off. It was a strange and theatrical scene. When
the one had read, and the other had drunk, they stared into each
other's faces, Alexander with a cheerful expression of trust and
kindly feeling towards Philip, while Philip, enraged at the calumny,
first raised his hands to heaven, protesting his innocence, and then,
casting himself upon his knees at the bed-side, besought Alexander to
be of good cheer and follow his advice. The effect of the drug at
first was to produce extreme weakness, for he became speechless and
almost insensible. In a short time, however, by Philip's care, he
recovered his strength, and showed himself publicly to the
Macedonians, who were very anxious about him, and would not believe
that he was better until they saw him.

XX. There was in the camp of Darius a Macedonian refugee, named
Amyntas, who was well acquainted with Alexander's character. This man,
when he found that Darius wished to enter the hilly country to fight
Alexander amongst its narrow valleys, besought him to remain where he
was, upon the flat open plains, where the enormous numbers of his
troops could be advantageously used against the small Macedonian army.
When Darius answered that he feared Alexander and his men would escape
unless he attacked, Amyntas said, "O king, have no fears on that
score; for he will come and fight you, and I warrant he is not far off
now." However, Amyntas made no impression on Darius, who marched
forward into Kilikia, while at the same time Alexander marched into
Syria to meet him. During the night they missed one another, and each
turned back, Alexander rejoicing at this incident, and hurrying to
catch Darius in the narrow defile leading into Kilikia, while Darius
was glad of the opportunity of recovering his former ground, and of
disentangling his army from the narrow passes through the mountains.
He already had perceived the mistake which he had committed in
entering a country where the sea, the mountains, and the river Pyramus
which ran between them, made it impossible for his army to act, while
on the other hand it afforded great advantages to his enemies, who
were mostly foot soldiers, and whose numbers were not so great as to
encumber their movements.

Fortune, no doubt, greatly favoured Alexander, but yet he owed much of
his success to his excellent generalship; for although enormously
outnumbered by the enemy, he not only avoided being surrounded by
them, but was able to outflank their left with his own right wing, and
by this manœuvre completely defeated the Persians. He himself fought
among the foremost, and, according to Chares, was wounded in the thigh
by Darius himself. Alexander in the account of the battle which he
despatched to Antipater, does not mention the name of the man who
wounded him, but states that he received a stab in the thigh with a
dagger, and that the wound was not a dangerous one.

He won a most decisive victory, and slew more than a hundred thousand
of the enemy, but could not come up with Darius himself, as he gained
a start of nearly a mile. He captured his chariot, however, and his
bow and arrows, and on his return found the Macedonians revelling in
the rich plunder which they had won, although the Persians had been in
light marching order, and had left most of their heavy baggage at
Damascus. The royal pavilion of Darius himself, full of beautiful
slaves, and rich furniture of every description, had been left
unplundered, and was reserved for Alexander himself, who as soon as he
had taken off his armour, proceeded to the bath, saying "Let me wash
off the sweat of the battle in the bath of Darius." " Nay," answered
one of his companions, "in that of Alexander; for the goods of the
vanquished become the property of the victor." When he entered the
bath and saw that all the vessels for water, the bath itself, and the
boxes of unguents were of pure gold, and smelt the delicious scent of
the rich perfumes with which the whole pavilion was filled; and when
he passed from the bath into a magnificent and lofty saloon where a
splendid banquet was prepared, he looked at his friends and said
"This, then, it is to be a king indeed."

XXI. While he was dining it was told him that the mother and wife of
Darius, and his two daughters, who were among the captives, had seen
the chariot and bow of Darius, and were mourning for him, imagining
him to be dead. Alexander when he heard this paused for a long time,
being more affected by the grief of these ladies, than by the victory
which he had won. Hie sent Leonnatus to inform them, that they need
neither mourn for Darius, nor fear Alexander; for he was fighting for
the empire of Asia, not as a personal enemy of Darius, and would take
care that they were treated with the same honour and respect as
before. This generous message to the captive princesses was followed
by acts of still greater kindness; for he permitted then to bury
whomsoever of the slain Persians they wished, and to use all their own
apparel and furniture, which had been seized by the soldiers as
plunder. He also allowed them to retain the regal title and state, and
even increased their revenues. But the noblest and most truly royal
part of his treatment of these captive ladies was that he never
permitted them to hear any coarse language, or imagine for a moment
that they were likely to suffer violence or outrage; so that they
lived unseen and unmolested, more as though they were in some sacred
retreat of holy virgins than in a camp. Yet the wife of Darius is said
to have been the most beautiful princess of her age, just as Darius
himself was the tallest and handsomest man in Asia, and their
daughters are said to have resembled their parents in beauty.
Alexander, it seems, thought it more kingly to restrain himself than
to conquer the enemy, and never touched any of them, nor did he know
any other before his marriage, except Barsine. This lady, after the
death of her husband Memnon, remained at Damascus. She had received a
Greek education, was naturally attractive, and was of royal descent,
as her father was Artabazus, who married one of the king's daughters;
which, added to the solicitations of Parmenio, as we are told by
Aristobulus, made Alexander the more willing to attach himself to so
beautiful and well-born a lady. When Alexander saw the beauty of the
other captives, he said in jest, that the Persian ladies make men's
eyes sore to behold them. Yet, in spite of their attractions, he was
determined that his self-restraint should be as much admired as their
beauty, and passed by them as if they had been images cut out of

XXII. Indeed, when Philoxenus, the commander of his fleet, wrote to
inform him that a slave merchant of Tarentum, named Theodorus, had two
beautiful slaves for sale, and desired to know whether he would buy
them, Alexander was greatly incensed, and angrily demanded of his
friends what signs of baseness Philoxenus could have observed in him
that he should venture to make such disgraceful proposals to him. He
sent a severe reprimand to Philoxenus, and ordered him to send
Theodorus and his merchandise to the devil. He also severely rebuked a
young man named Hagnon for a similar offence.

On another occasion, when he heard that two Macedonians of Parmenio's
regiment, named Damon and Timotheus, had violently outraged the wives
of some of the mercenary soldiers, he wrote to Parmenio, ordering him,
if the charge were proved, to put them to death like mere brute beasts
that prey upon mankind. And in that letter he wrote thus of himself.
"I have never seen, or desired to see the wife of Darius, and have not
even allowed her beauty to be spoken of in my presence."

He was wont to say that he was chiefly reminded that he was mortal by
these two weaknesses, sleep and lust; thinking weariness and
sensuality alike to be bodily weaknesses. He was also most temperate
in eating, as was signally proved by his answer to the princess Ada,
whom he adopted as his mother, and made Queen of Karia. She, in order
to show her fondness for him, sent him every day many dainty dishes
and sweetmeats, and at last presented him with her best cooks. He
answered her that he needed them not, since he had been provided with
much better relishes for his food by his tutor Leonidas, who had
taught him to earn his breakfast by a night-march, and to obtain an
appetite for his dinner by eating sparingly at breakfast. "My tutor,"
he said, "would often look into my chests of clothes, and of bedding,
to make sure that my mother had not hidden any delicacies for me in

XXIII. He was less given to wine than he was commonly supposed to be.
He was thought to be a great drinker because of the length of time
which he would pass over each cup, in talking more than in drinking
it, for he always held a long conversation while drinking, provided he
was at leisure to do so. If anything had to be done, no wine, or
desire of rest, no amusement, marriage, or spectacle could restrain
him, as they did other generals. This is clearly shown by the
shortness of his life, and the wonderful number of great deeds which
he performed during the little time that he lived. When he was at
leisure, he used to sacrifice to the gods immediately after rising in
the morning, and then sit down to his breakfast. After breakfast, he
would pass the day in hunting, deciding disputes between his subjects,
devising military manœuvres, or reading. When on a journey, if he was
not in any great hurry, he used, while on the road, to practice
archery, or to dismount from a chariot which was being driven at full
speed, and then again mount it. Frequently also he hunted foxes and
shot birds for amusement, as we learn from his diaries. On arriving at
the place where he intended to pass the night, he always bathed and
anointed himself, and then asked his cooks what was being prepared for
his dinner.

He always dined late, just as it began to grow dark, and was very
careful to have his table well provided, and to give each of his
guests an equal share. He sat long over his wine, as we have said,
because of his love of conversation. And although at all other times
his society was most charming, and his manners gracious and pleasant
beyond any other prince of his age, yet when he was drinking, his talk
ran entirely upon military topics, and became offensively boastful,
partly from his own natural disposition, and partly from the
encouragement which he received from his flatterers. This often
greatly embarrassed honest men, as they neither wished to vie with the
flatterers in praising him to his face, nor yet to appear to grudge
him his due share of admiration. To bestow such excessive praise
seemed shameful, while to withhold it was dangerous. After a drinking
bout, he would take a bath, and often slept until late in the
following day; and sometimes he passed the whole day asleep. He cared
but little for delicate food, and often when the rarest fruits and
fish were sent to him from the sea-coast, he would distribute them so
lavishly amongst his friends as to leave none for himself; yet his
table was always magnificently served, and as his revenues became
increased by his conquests, its expense rose to ten thousand drachmas
a day. To this it was finally limited, and those who entertained
Alexander were told that they must not expend more than that sum.

XXIV. After the battle of Issus, he sent troops to Damascus, and
captured all the treasure, the baggage, and the women and children of
the Persian army. Those who chiefly benefited by this were the
Thessalian cavalry, who had distinguished themselves in the battle,
and had been purposely chosen for this service by Alexander as a
reward for their bravery; yet all the camp was filled with riches, so
great was the mass of plunder. Then did the Macedonians get their
first taste of gold and silver, of Persian luxury and of Persian
women; and after this, like hounds opening upon a scent, they eagerly
pressed forward on the track of the wealthy Persians. Alexander,
however, thought it best, before proceeding further, to complete the
conquest of the sea-coast. Cyprus was at once surrendered to him by
its local kings, as was all Phœnicia, except Tyre. He besieged Tyre
for seven months, with great mounds and siege artillery on the land
side, while a fleet of two hundred triremes watched it by sea. During
the seventh month of the siege he dreamed that Herakles greeted him in
a friendly manner from the walls of Tyre, and called upon him to come
in. Many of the Tyrians also dreamed that Apollo appeared to them, and
said that he was going to Alexander, since what was being done in the
city of Tyre did not please him. The Tyrians, upon this, treated the
god as though he were a man caught in the act of deserting to
Alexander, for they tied cords round his statue, nailed it down to its
base, and called him Alexandristes, or follower of Alexander.
Alexander now dreamed another dream, that a satyr appeared to him at a
distance, and sported with him, but when he endeavoured to catch him,
ran away, and that, at length, after much trouble, he caught him.
This was very plausibly explained by the prophets to mean "Sa
Tyros"--"Tyre shall be thine," dividing the Greek word Satyros into
two parts. A well is shown at the present day near which Alexander saw
the satyr in his dream.

During the siege, Alexander made an expedition against the
neighbouring Arab tribes, in which he fell into great danger through
his old tutor Lysimachus, who insisted on accompanying him, declaring
that he was no older and no less brave than Phœnix when he followed
Achilles to Troy. When they reached the mountains, they were forced to
leave their horses and march on foot. The rest proceeded on their way,
but Lysimachus could not keep up, although night was coming on and the
enemy were near. Alexander would not leave him, but encouraged him and
helped him along until he became separated from his army, and found
himself almost alone. It was now dark, and bitterly cold. The country
where they were was very rugged and mountainous, and in the distance
appeared many scattered watch-fires of the enemy.

Alexander, accustomed to rouse the disheartened Macedonians by his own
personal exertions, and trusting to his swiftness of foot, ran up to
the nearest fire, struck down with his sword two men who wore watching
beside it, and brought a burning firebrand back to his own party. They
now made up an enormous fire, which terrified some of the enemy so
much that they retreated, while others who had intended to attack
them, halted and forbore to do so, thus enabling them to pass the
night in safety.

XXV. The siege of Tyre came to an end in the following manner. The
greater part of Alexander's troops were resting from their labours,
but in order to occupy the attention of the enemy, he led a few men up
to the city walls, while Aristander, the soothsayer, offered
sacrifice. When he saw the victims, he boldly informed all who were
present that during the current month, Tyre would be taken. All who
heard him laughed him to scorn, as that day was the last of the month,
but Alexander seeing him at his wits' end, being always eager to
support the credit of prophecies, gave orders that that day should
not be reckoned as the thirtieth of the month, but as the
twenty-third. After this he bade the trumpets sound, and assaulted the
walls much more vigorously than he had originally intended. The attack
succeeded, and as the rest of the army would no longer stay behind in
the camp, but rushed to take their share in the assault, the Tyrians
were overpowered, and their city taken on that very day.

Afterwards, while Alexander was besieging Gaza, the largest city in
Syria, a clod of earth was dropped upon his shoulder by a bird, which
afterwards alighted upon one of the military engines, and became
entangled in the network of ropes by which it was worked. This portent
also was truly explained by Aristander; for the place was taken, and
Alexander was wounded in the shoulder.

He sent many of the spoils to Olympias, Kleopatra, and others of his
friends, and sent his tutor Leonidas five hundred talents weight of
frankincense, and a hundred talents of myrrh, to remind him of what he
had said when a child. Leonidas once, when sacrificing, reproved
Alexander for taking incense by handfuls to throw upon the victim when
it was burning on the altar. "When," he said, "you have conquered the
country from which incense comes, Alexander, then you may make such
rich offerings as these; but at present you must use what we have
sparingly." Alexander now wrote to him, "We have sent you abundance of
frankincense and myrrh, that you may no longer treat the gods so

XXVI. When a certain casket was brought to him, which appeared to be
the most valuable of all the treasures taken from Darius, he asked his
friends what they thought he ought to keep in it as his own most
precious possession. After they had suggested various different
things, he said that he intended to keep his copy of the Iliad in it.
This fact is mentioned by many historians; and if the legend which is
current among the people of Alexandria; on the authority of
Herakleides, be true, the poems of Homer were far from idle or useless
companions to him, even when on a campaign. The story goes that after
conquering Egypt, he desired to found a great and populous Grecian
city, to be called after his own name, and that after he had fixed
upon an excellent site, where in the opinion of the best architects, a
city surpassing anything previously existing could be built, he
dreamed that a man with long hair and venerable aspect appeared to
him, and recited the following verses:

    "Hard by, an island in the stormy main
    Lies close to Egypt, Pharos is its name."

As soon as he woke, he proceeded to Pharos, which then was an island
near the Canopic mouth of the Nile, though at the present day so much
earth has been deposited by the river that it is joined to the
mainland. When he saw the great advantages possessed by this place,
which is a long strip of land, stretching between the sea and a large
inland lake, with a large harbour at the end of it, he at once said
that Homer, besides his other admirable qualities, was a splendid
architect, and gave orders to his workmen to mark out a site for a
city suitable to such a situation. There was no chalk or white earth,
with which it is usual to mark the course of the walls, but they took
barley-groats, and marked out a semicircular line with them upon the
black earth, dividing it into equal segments by lines radiating from
the centre, so that it looked like a Macedonian cloak, of which the
walls formed the outer fringe. While the king was looking with
satisfaction at the plan of the new city, suddenly from the lake and
the river, innumerable aquatic birds of every kind flew like great
clouds to the spot, and devoured all the barley. This omen greatly
disturbed Alexander; however, the soothsayers bade him take courage,
and interpreted it to mean that the place would become a very rich and
populous city. Upon this he ordered the workmen at once to begin to
build, while he himself started to visit the shrine and oracle of Zeus
Ammon. This journey is tedious and difficult, and dangerous also,
because the way lies over a waterless desert, where the traveller is
exposed to violent storms of sand whenever the south wind blows. It
was here that fifty thousand men of the army of Cambyses are said to
have been overwhelmed by the sand, which rolled upon them in huge
billows until they were completely ingulfed. All these perils were
present to all men's minds, but it was hard to turn Alexander away
from any project upon which he had once set his heart. The invariable
good fortune which he had enjoyed confirmed his self-will, and his
pride would not allow him to confess himself vanquished either by
human enemies or natural obstacles.

XXVII. During his journey, the signal assistance which he received
from the gods in all his difficulties was more remarkable and more
generally believed than the oracular response which he is said to have
received, although these portents made men more inclined to believe in
the oracle. In the first place, plentiful showers were sent, which
quite dissipated any fears which the expedition had entertained about
suffering from thirst, while the rain cooled the sand and thus
tempered the hot air of the desert to a pleasant warmth. Next, when
the guides lost their way, and all were wandering helplessly, birds
appeared who guided them on the right path, flying before them and
encouraging them to march, and waiting for those of them who fell
behind wearied. "We are even assured by Kallisthones that, at night,
the birds by their cries recalled stragglers, and kept all on the
direct road.

When Alexander had crossed the desert, and arrived at the temple, the
priest of Ammon greeted him as the son of the god. He inquired whether
anyone of his father's murderers had escaped, to which the priest
answered that he must not ask such questions, for his father was more
than man. Alexander now altered the form of his inquiry and asked
whether he had punished all the murderers of Philip: and then he asked
another question, about his empire, whether he was fated to conquer
all mankind. On receiving as an answer that this would be granted to
him and that Philip had been amply avenged, he made splendid presents
to the god, and amply rewarded the priests.

This is the account which most historians give about the response of
the oracle; but in a letter to his mother, Alexander says that he
received certain secret prophecies, which upon his return he would
communicate to her alone. Some narrate that the priest, wishing to
give him a friendly greeting in the Greek language, said "My son,"
but being a foreigner, mispronounced the words so as to say "Son of
Zeus," a mistake which delighted Alexander and caused men to say that
the god himself had addressed him as "Son of Zeus." We are told that
while in Egypt, he attended the lectures of the philosopher Psammon,
and was especially pleased when he pointed out that God is King over
all men, because that which rules and conquers must be king. He
himself thought that he had improved upon this by saying that although
God is the common father of all men, yet that he makes the best men
more peculiarly his own.

XXVIII. In his dealings with Asiatics, he always acted and spoke with
the greatest arrogance, and seemed firmly convinced of his own divine
parentage, but he was careful not to make the same boast when among
Greeks. On one occasion, indeed, he wrote to the Athenians the
following letter about their possession of Samos. "I," he said,
"should not have presented you with that free and glorious city; but
it was presented to you by its former master, my reputed father

Yet afterwards when he was wounded by an arrow and in great pain he
said "This, my friends, is blood that runs from my wound, and not

     "Ichor, that courses through the veins of gods."

Once when a great thunderstorm terrified every one, Anaxarchus the
sophist, who was with him, said "Son of Zeus, canst thou do as much?"
To this, Alexander answered with a smile, "Nay, I love not to frighten
my friends, as you would have me do, when you complained of my table,
because fish was served upon it instead of princes' heads." Indeed we
are told that once, when Alexander had sent some small fish to
Hephæstion, Anaxarchus used this expression ironically disparaging
those who undergo great toils and run great risks to obtain
magnificent results which, after all, make them no happier or able to
enjoy themselves than other men. From these anecdotes we see that
Alexander himself did not put any belief in the story of his divine
parentage, but that he used it as a means of imposing upon others.

XXIX. From Egypt he returned to Phœnicia, and there offered
magnificent sacrifices to the gods, with grand processions, cyclic
choruses, and performances of tragic dramas. These last were
especially remarkable, for the local kings of Cyprus acted as choragi,
that is, supplied the chorus and paid all the expenses of putting the
drama upon the stage, just as is done every year at Athens by the
representatives of the tribes, and they exhibited wonderful emulation,
desiring to outdo each other in the splendour of their shows. The
contest between Nikokreon, King of Salamis, and Pasikrates, King of
Soli, is especially memorable. These two had obtained by lot the two
most celebrated actors of the day, who were named Athenodorus and
Thessalus, to act in their plays. Of these, Athenodorus was assigned
to Nikokreon, and Thessalus, in whose success Alexander himself was
personally interested, to Pasikrates. Alexander, however, never
allowed any word to escape him denoting his preference for one over
the other until after the votes had been given, and Athenodorus had
been proclaimed the winner, when, as he was going home, he said that
he would willingly have given up a province of his kingdom to save
Thessalus from being vanquished. As Athenodorus was fined by the
Athenians for being absent from their Dionysian festival, in which he
ought to have taken part, he begged Alexander to write them a letter
to excuse him. Alexander refused to do this, but paid his fine
himself. And when Lykon, of Skarphia, an excellent actor who had
pleased Alexander well, inserted a verse into the comedy which he was
acting, in which he begged to be given ten talents, Alexander laughed
and gave them to him.

Darius now sent an embassy to Alexander, bearing a letter, in which he
offered to pay ten thousand talents as a ransom for his wife and
children, and proposed that Alexander should receive all the territory
west of the Euphrates, and become his ally and son-in-law. Alexander
laid this proposal before his friends, and when Parmenio said, "I
should accept it, if I were Alexander." "So would I," replied
Alexander, "if I were Parmenio." He wrote, however, a letter in answer
to Darius, informing him that if he would come to him, and submit
himself, he should be used with courtesy; but that if not, he should
presently march against him.

XXX. Soon after this the wife of Darius died in child-bed, which
greatly grieved Alexander, as he thereby lost a great opportunity of
displaying his magnanimity: nevertheless he granted her a magnificent
funeral. We are told that one of the eunuchs attached to the royal
harem, named Teireus, who had been captured with the ladies, made his
escape shortly after the queen's death, rode straight to Darius, and
informed him of what had happened. Darius, at this, beat his face and
wept aloud, saying, "Alas for the fortune of Persia! that the wife and
sister of the king should not only have been taken captive while she
lived, but also have been buried unworthily of her rank when she
died." To this the eunuch answered, "You have no cause to lament the
evil fortune of Persia on account of your wife's burial, or of any
want of due respect to her. Our lady Statira, your children, and your
mother, when alive wanted for nothing except the light of your
countenance, which our lord Oromasdes will some day restore to them,
nor was she treated without honour when she died, for her funeral was
even graced by the tears of her enemies. Alexander is as gracious a
conqueror as he is a terrible enemy."

These words roused other suspicions in the mind of Darius: and,
leading the eunuch into an inner chamber in his tent, he said to him,
"If you have not, like the good luck of Persia, gone over to Alexander
and the Macedonians, and if I am still your master Darius, tell me, I
conjure you by the name of great Mithras our lord, and by the right
hand of a king, which I give thee, do I lament over the least of
Statira's misfortunes when I weep for her death, and did she not in
her life make us more miserable by her dishonour, than if she had
fallen into the hands of a cruel enemy? For what honest communication
can a young conqueror have with the wife of his enemy, and what can be
the meaning of his showing such excessive honour to her after her
death?" While Darius was yet speaking, Teireus threw himself at his
feet, and besought him to be silent, and not to dishonour Alexander
and his dead wife and sister by such suspicions, nor yet to take away
from himself that thought which ought to be his greatest consolation
in his misfortunes, which was that he had been conquered by one who
was more than man. Rather ought he to admire Alexander, whose
honourable treatment of the Persian women proved him to be even
greater than did his bravery in vanquishing their men. Those words the
eunuch assured him, with many protestations and oaths, were perfectly
true. Darius, when he heard this, came out of his tent to his friends,
and, raising his hands to heaven, said, "Ye parent gods, who watch
over the Persian throne, grant that I may again restore the fortune of
Persia to its former state, in order that I may have an opportunity of
repaying Alexander in person the kindness which he has shown to those
whom I hold dearest; but if indeed the fated hour has arrived, and the
Persian empire is doomed to perish, may no other conqueror than
Alexander mount the throne of Cyrus." The above is the account given
by most historians of what took place on this occasion.

XXXI. Alexander, after conquering all the country on the higher bank
of the Euphrates, marched to attack Darius, who was advancing to meet
him with an army of a million fighting men.

During this march, one of Alexander's friends told him as a joke, that
the camp-followers had divided themselves into two bodies in sport,
each of which was led by a general, the one called Alexander, and the
other Darius; and that after beginning to skirmish with one another by
throwing clods of earth, they had come to blows of the fist, and had
at length become so excited that they fought with sticks and stones,
and that it was hard to part them. On hearing this, Alexander ordered
the two leaders to fight in single combat: and he himself armed the
one called Alexander, while Philotas armed the representative of
Darius. The whole army looked on, thinking that the result would be
ominous of their own success or failure. After a severe fight, the one
called Alexander conquered, and was rewarded with twelve villages and
the right of wearing the Persian garb. This we are told by
Eratosthenes the historian.

The decisive battle with Darius was fought at Gaugamela, not at
Arbela, as most writers tell us. It is said that this word signifies
"the house of the camel," and that one of the ancient Kings of Persia,
whose life had been saved by the swiftness with which a camel bore him
away from his enemies, lodged the animal there for the rest of its
life, and assigned to it the revenues of several villages for its

During the month Bœdromion, at the beginning of the celebration of the
Eleusinian mysteries, there was an eclipse, of the moon: and on the
eleventh day after the eclipse the two armies came within sight of one
another. Darius kept his troops under arms, and inspected their ranks
by torch-light, while Alexander allowed the Macedonians to take their
rest, but himself with the soothsayer Aristander performed some
mystical ceremonies in front of his tent, and offered sacrifice to

When Parmenio and the elder officers of Alexander saw the entire plain
between Mount Niphates and the confines of Gordyene covered with the
watch fires of the Persians, and heard the vague, confused murmur of
their army like the distant roar of the sea, they were astonished, and
said to one another that it would indeed be a prodigious effort to
fight such a mass of enemies by daylight in a pitched battle.

As soon as Alexander had finished his sacrifice they went to him, and
tried to persuade him to fall upon the Persians by night, as the
darkness would prevent his troops from seeing the overwhelming numbers
of the enemy. It was then that he made that memorable answer, "I will
not steal a victory," which some thought to show an over-boastful
spirit, which could jest in the presence of such fearful danger; while
others thought that it showed a steady confidence and true knowledge
of what would happen on the morrow, and meant that he did not intend
to give Darius, when vanquished, the consolation of attributing his
defeat to the confusion of a night attack; for Darius had already
explained his defeat at Issus to have been owing to the confined
nature of the ground, and to his forces having been penned up between
the mountains and the sea. It was not any want of men or of arms
which would make Darius yield, when he had so vast a country and such
great resources at his disposal: it was necessary to make pride and
hope alike die within him, by inflicting upon him a crushing defeat in
a fair field and in open daylight.

XXXII. After his officers had retired, Alexander retired to his tent
and is said to have slept more soundly than was his wont, which
surprised the generals who came to wait upon him early in the morning.
On their own responsibility they gave orders to the soldiers to
prepare their breakfast; and then, as time pressed, Parmenio entered
his tent, and standing by his bed-side, twice or thrice called him
loudly by name. When he was awake, Parmenio asked him why he slept so
soundly, as if he had already won the victory instead of being just
about to fight the most important of all his battles. Alexander
answered with a smile; "Do you not think we have already won the
victory, now that we are no longer obliged to chase Darius over an
enormous tract of wasted country?"

Alexander both before the battle, and in the most dangerous crisis of
the day proved himself truly great, always taking judicious measures,
with a cheerful confidence of success. His left wing was terribly
shaken by a tumultuous charge of the Bactrian cavalry, who broke into
the ranks of the Macedonians, while Mazæus sent some horsemen
completely round the left wing, who fell upon the troops left to guard
the baggage. Parmenio, finding his men thrown into confusion by these
attacks, sent a message to Alexander, that his fortified camp and
baggage would be lost, if he did not at once despatch a strong
reinforcement to the rear. At the time when Alexander received this
message, he was in the act of giving his own troops orders to attack,
and he answered that Parmenio must, in his confusion, have forgotten
that the victors win all the property of the vanquished, and that men
who are defeated must not think about treasure or prisoners, but how
to fight and die with honour. After sending back this answer to
Parmenio, he put on his helmet; for he had left his tent fully armed
at all other points, wearing a tunic of Sicilian manufacture closely
girt round his waist, and over that a double-woven linen corslet,
which had been among the spoils taken at Issus. His helmet was of
steel, polished as bright as silver, and was wrought by Theophilus,
while round his neck he wore a steel gorget, inlaid with precious
stones. His sword, his favourite weapon, was a miracle of lightness
and tempering, and had been presented to him by the King of Kitium in
Cyprus. The cloak which hung from his shoulders was by far the most
gorgeous of all his garments, and was the work of the ancient artist
Helikon,[410] presented to Alexander by the city of Rhodes, and was
worn by him in all his battles. While he was arraying his troops in
order of battle, and giving final directions to his officers, he rode
another horse to spare Boukephalus, who was now somewhat old. As soon
as he was ready to begin the attack, he mounted Boukephalus and led on
his army.

XXXIII. Upon this occasion, after addressing the Thessalians and other
Greek troops at considerable length, as they confidently shouted to
him to lead them against the barbarians, we are told by Kallisthenes
that he shifted his lance into his left hand, and raising his right
hand to heaven, prayed to the gods that, if he really were the son of
Zeus, they would assist and encourage the Greeks. The prophet
Aristander, who rode by his side, dressed in a white robe, and with a
crown of gold upon his head, now pointed out to him an eagle which
rose over his head and directed its flight straight towards the enemy.
This so greatly encouraged all who beheld it, that all the cavalry of
Alexander's army at once set spurs to their horses and dashed
forwards, followed by the phalanx. Before the first of them came to
actual blows, the Persian line gave way, and terrible confusion took
place, as Alexander drove the beaten troops before him, struggling to
fight his way to the centre, where was Darius himself.

Alexander had already noted the conspicuous figure of this tall,
handsome prince, as he stood in his lofty chariot, surrounded by the
royal body guard, a glittering mass of well-armed horsemen, behind the
deep ranks of the Persian army. The onslaught of Alexander was so
terrific that none could withstand him, and those whom he drove before
him, in headlong flight, disordered the ranks which were yet unbroken,
and caused a general rout. Yet the noblest and bravest of the Persians
fought and died manfully in defence of their king, and, even when
lying on the ground at their last gasp, seized the men and horses by
the legs to prevent their pursuing him. Darius himself, seeing all
these frightful disasters, when his first line was hurled back in
ruin, would fain have turned his chariot and fled, but this was
difficult, for the wheels were encumbered by the heaps of corpses, and
the horses were so excited and restive that the charioteer was unable
to manage them. Darius, we are told, left his chariot and his arms,
mounted a mare which had recently foaled, and rode away. He would not
have escaped even thus, had not mounted messengers just then arrived
from Parmenio, begging Alexander to come to his aid, as he was engaged
with a large body of the enemy upon which he could make no impression.
Indeed, throughout this battle, Parmenio is said to have displayed
great remissness and self-will, either because his courage was damped
by age, or because, as we are told by Kallisthenes, he envied
Alexander's greatness and prosperity. Alexander was much vexed at the
message, but without explaining to the soldiers what his real reasons
were, ordered the trumpets to sound the recall, as though he were
tired of slaughter, or because night was now coming on. He himself at
once rode to the scene of danger, but on his way thither heard that
the enemy had been completely defeated and put to flight.

XXXIV. The result of this battle was the complete destruction of the
Persian empire. Alexander was at once saluted King of Asia, and after
a splendid sacrifice to the gods, distributed the treasures and
provinces of that country among his friends. In the pride of his heart
he now wrote to Greece, saying that all the despots must be driven
out, and each city left independent with a constitutional government,
and gave orders for the rebuilding of the city of Platæa, because the
ancestors of the citizens of Platæa gave their territory to be
consecrated to the gods on behalf of the liberties of Greece. He also
sent some part of the spoils to the citizens of Kroton, in Italy, to
show his respect for the memory of Phaÿllus the athlete, who, during
the Persian invasion, when all the other Greek cities in Italy
deserted the cause of their countrymen in Greece, fitted out a ship of
war at his own expense, and sailed to Salamis to take part in the
battle there, and share in the dangers of the Greeks. Such honour did
Alexander pay to personal prowess, for he loved to reward and to
commemorate noble deeds.

XXXV. Alexander now marched into the country of Babylonia, which at
once yielded to him. As he drew near to Ekbatana he marvelled much at
an opening in the earth, out of which poured fire, as if from a well.
Close by, the naphtha which was poured out formed a large lake. This
substance is like bitumen, and is so easy to set on fire, that without
touching it with any flame, it will catch light from the rays which
are sent forth from a fire, burning the air which is between both. The
natives, in order to show Alexander the qualities of naphtha, lightly
sprinkled with it the street which led to his quarters, and when it
became dark applied a match to one end of the track which had been
sprinkled with it. As soon as it was alight in one place, the fire ran
all along, and as quick as thought the whole street was in flames. At
this time Alexander was in his bath, and was waited upon by Stephanus,
a hard-favoured page-boy, who had, however, a fine voice.
Athenophanes, an Athenian, who always anointed and bathed King
Alexander, now asked him if he would like to see the power of the
naphtha tried upon Stephanus, saying that if it burned upon his body
and did not go out, the force of it must indeed be marvellous. The boy
himself was eager to make the trial, and was anointed with it and set
on fire. He was at once enveloped in flame, and Alexander was
terrified for him, fearing that he would be burned to death. Indeed,
had it not chanced that several attendants with pitchers of water in
their hands had just arrived, all help would have been too late. They
poured water over the boy and extinguished the flames, but not before
he had been badly burned, so that he was ill for some time after. Some
writers, who are eager to prove the truth of ancient legends, say
that this naphtha was truly the deadly drug used by Medea, with which
she anointed the crown and robe spoken of in the tragedies: for flame
could not be produced by them, nor of its own accord, but if fire were
brought near to clothes steeped in naphtha they would at once burst
into flame. The reason of this is that the rays which fire sends forth
fall harmlessly upon all other bodies, merely imparting to them light
and heat; but when they meet with such as have an oily, dry humour,
and thereby have a sympathy with the nature of fire, they easily cause
them to catch fire. It is a disputed question, however, how the
naphtha is produced, though most writers conceive its combustible
principle to be supplied by the greasy and fiery nature of the soil;
for all the district of Babylonia is fiery hot, so that often barley
is cast up out of the ground in which it is sown, as if the earth
throbbed and vibrated with the heat, and during the hottest part of
summer the inhabitants are wont to sleep upon leathern bags filled
with water for the sake of coolness. Harpalus, who was appointed
governor of the district, took an especial delight in adorning the
palace and the public walks with Greek flowers and shrubs; but
although he found no difficulty with most of them, he was unable to
induce ivy to grow, because ivy loves a cold soil, and the earth there
is too hot for it. These digressions, provided they be not too
lengthy, we hope will not be thought tedious by our readers.

XXXVI. When Alexander made himself master of Susa, he found in the
palace forty thousand talents worth of coined money, besides an
immense mass of other valuable treasure. Here we are told was found
five thousand talents weight of cloth dyed with Hermionic[411] purple
cloth, which had been stored up there for a space of two hundred years
save ten, and which nevertheless still kept its colour as brilliantly
as ever. The reason of this is said to be that honey was originally
used in dyeing the cloth purple, and white olive oil for such of it as
was dyed-white: for cloth of these two colours will preserve its
lustre without fading for an equal period of time. Demon also informs
us that amongst other things the Kings of Persia had water brought
from the Nile and the Danube, and laid up in their treasury, as a
confirmation of the greatness of their empire, and to prove that they
were lords of all the world.

XXXVII. As the district of Persis[412] was very hard to invade, both
because of its being mountainous, and because it was defended by the
noblest of the Persians (for Darius had fled thither for refuge),
Alexander forced his way into it by a circuitous path, which was shown
him by a native of the country, the son of a Lykian captive, by a
Persian mother, who was able to speak both the Greek and the Persian
language. It is said that while Alexander was yet a child, the
prophetess at the temple of Apollo at Delphi foretold that a wolf[413]
should some day serve him for a guide when he went to attack the
Persians. When Persis was taken, a terrible slaughter was made of all
the prisoners. A letter written by Alexander himself is still extant,
in which he orders that they should all be put to the sword, thinking
this to be the safest course. He is said to have found as much coined
money here[414] as in Susa, and so much other treasure that it
required ten thousand carts, each drawn by a pair of mules, and five
thousand camels, to carry it away.

Alexander, observing a large statue of Xerxes which had been thrown
down and was being carelessly trampled upon by the soldiers as they
pressed into the royal palace, stopped, and addressed it as though it
were alive. "Shall we," said he, "leave thee lying there, because of
thy invasion of Greece, or shall we set thee up again because of thy
magnificence and greatness of soul?" He then stood musing for a long
time, till at length he roused himself from his reverie and went his
way. Being desirous of giving his soldiers some rest, as it was now
winter, he remained in that country for four months. It is related
that when he first took his seat upon the royal throne of Persia,
under the golden canopy, Demaratus, an old friend and companion of
Alexander, burst into tears, and exclaimed that the Greeks who had
died before that day had lost the greatest of pleasures, because they
had not seen Alexander seated on the throne of Darius.

XXXVIII. After this, while he was engaged in preparing to march in
pursuit of Darius, he chanced to be present at a banquet where his
friends had brought their mistresses. Of these ladies the chief was
the celebrated Thais, who afterwards became the mistress of King
Ptolemy of Egypt, and who was of Attic parentage.

She at first amused Alexander by her conversation, then adroitly
flattered him, and at last, after he had been drinking for some time,
began to speak in a lofty strain of patriotism which scarcely became
such a person. She declared, that she was fully repaid for all the
hardships which she had undergone while travelling through Asia with
the army, now that she was able to revel in the palace of the haughty
Kings of Persia; but that it would be yet sweeter to her to burn the
house of Xerxes, who burned her native Athens, and to apply the torch
with her own hand in the presence of Alexander, that it might be told
among men that a woman who followed Alexander's camp had taken a more
noble revenge upon the Persians for the wrongs of Greece, than all the
admirals and generals of former times had been able to do. This speech
of hers was enthusiastically applauded, and all Alexander's friends
pressed him to execute the design. Alexander leaped from his seat, and
led the way, with a garland upon his head and a torch in his hand. The
rest of the revellers followed, and surrounded the palace, while the
remainder of the Macedonians, hearing what was going on, brought them
torches. They did so the more readily because they thought that the
destruction of the palace indicated an intention on Alexander's part
to return home, and not to remain in Persia. Some historians say that
this was how he came to burn the palace, while others say that he did
it after mature deliberation: but all agree that he repented of what
he had done, and gave orders to have the fire extinguished.

XXXIX. His liberality and love of making presents increased with his
conquests: and his gifts were always bestowed in so gracious a manner
as to double their value. I will now mention a few instances of this.
Ariston, the leader of the Pæonians, having slain an enemy, brought
his head and showed it to Alexander, saying, "O king, in my country
such a present as this is always rewarded with a gold cup." Alexander
smiled, and said, "Yes, with an empty cup: but I pledge you in this
gold cup, full of good wine, and give you the cup besides." One of the
common Macedonian soldiers was driving a mule laden with gold
belonging to Alexander; but as the animal became too weary to carry
it, he unloaded it, and carried the gold himself. When Alexander saw
him toiling under his burden, and learned his story, he said, "Be not
weary yet, but carry it a little way farther, as far as your own tent;
for I give it to you." He seemed to be more vexed with those who did
not ask him for presents than with those who did so. He wrote a letter
to Phokion, in which he declared that he would not any longer remain
his friend, if Phokion refused all his presents. Serapion, a boy who
served the ball to the players at tennis, had been given nothing by
Alexander because he had never asked for anything. One day when
Serapion was throwing the ball to the players as usual, he omitted to
do so to the king, and when Alexander asked why he did not give him
the ball, answered "You do not ask me for it." At this, Alexander
laughed and gave him many presents. Once he appeared to be seriously
angry with one Proteus, a professed jester. The man's friends
interceded for him, and he himself begged for pardon with tears in his
eyes, until Alexander said that he forgave him. "My king," said he
"will you not give me something by way of earnest, to assure me that I
am in your favour." Upon this the king at once ordered him to be given
five talents. The amount of money which he bestowed upon his friends
and his body guard appears from a letter which his mother Olympias
wrote to him, in which she said, "It is right to benefit your friends
and to show your esteem for them; but you are making them all as great
as kings, so that they get many friends, and leave you alone without
any." Olympias often wrote to him to this effect, but he kept all her
letters secret, except one which Hephæstion, who was accustomed to
read Alexander's letters, opened and read. Alexander did not prevent
him, but took his own ring from his finger, and pressed the seal upon
Hephæstion's mouth. The son of Mazæus, who had been the chief man in
the kingdom under Darius, was governor of a province, and Alexander
added another larger one to it. The young nobleman refused to accept
the gift, and said, "My king, formerly there was only one Darius, but
you now have made many Alexanders."

He presented Parmenio with the house of Bagoas, in which it is said
that property worth a thousand talents was found which had belonged to
the people of Susa. He also sent word to Antipater, warning him to
keep a guard always about his person, as a plot had been formed
against his life. He sent many presents to his mother, but forbade her
to interfere with the management of the kingdom. When she stormed at
this decision of his, he patiently endured her anger; and once when
Antipater wrote a long letter to him full of abuse of Olympias, he
observed, after reading it, that Antipater did not know that one tear
of his mother's eye would outweigh ten thousand such letters.

XL. Alexander now observed that his friends were living in great
luxury and extravagance; as for instance, Hagnon of Teos had his shoes
fastened with silver nails; Leonnatus took about with him many camels,
laden with dust,[415] from Egypt, to sprinkle his body with when he
wrestled; Philotas had more than twelve miles of nets for hunting; and
that all of them used richly perfumed unguents to anoint themselves
with instead of plain oil, and were attended by a host of bathmen and
chamberlains. He gently reproved them for this, saying that he was
surprised that men who had fought so often and in such great battles,
did not remember that the victors always sleep more sweetly than the
vanquished, and that they did not perceive, when they imitated the
luxury of the Persians, that indulgence is for slaves, but labour for
princes. "How," he asked, "can a man attend to his horse, or clean
his own lance and helmet, if he disdains to rub his own precious body
with his hands? And do you not know, that our career of conquest will
come to an end on the day when we learn to live like those whom we
have vanquished?" He himself, by way of setting an example, now
exposed himself to greater fatigues and hardships than ever in his
campaigns and hunting expeditions, so that old Lakon, who was with him
when he slew a great lion, said, "Alexander, you fought well with the
lion for his kingdom." This hunting scene was afterwards represented
by Kraterus at Delphi. He had figures made in bronze of Alexander and
the hounds fighting with the lion, and of himself running to help him.
Some of the figures were executed by the sculptor Lysippus, and some
by Leochares.

XLI. Thus did Alexander risk his life in the vain endeavour to teach
his friends to live with simplicity and hardihood; but they, now that
they had become rich and important personages, desired to enjoy
themselves, and no longer cared for long marches and hard campaigns,
so that at last they began to murmur against him, and speak ill of
him. He bore this with great gentleness at first, saying that it was
the part of a king to do his subjects good and to be ill-spoken of by
them in return. Indeed, he used to take advantage of the most trifling
incidents to show the esteem he had for his intimate friends, of which
I will now give a few examples.

Peukestas once was bitten by a bear, while hunting. He wrote and told
his friends of his mishap, but kept it secret from Alexander. He, when
he heard of it, wrote to Peukestas, blaming him for having concealed
his hurt. "But now," he writes, "let me know how you are, and tell me
if those who were hunting the bear with you deserted you, that I may
punish them." When Hephæstion was absent on some business, he wrote to
him to say that Kraterus had been struck in the thighs with
Perdikkas's spear, while they were amusing themselves by baiting an

When Peukestas recovered from some illness, he wrote to the physician
Alexippus, congratulating him on the cure which he had effected. When
Kraterus was ill, Alexander had a dream about him, in consequence of
which he offered sacrifice to certain gods, and bade him also
sacrifice to them: and when Pausanias the physician wished to give
Kraterus a draught of hellebore, Alexander wrote to him, advising him
to take the drug, but expressing the greatest anxiety about the

He imprisoned Ephialtes and Kissus, who were the first to bring him
the news that Harpalus had absconded, because he thought that they
wrongfully accused him.

When he was on the point of sending home all his invalided and
superannuated soldiers, Eurylochus of Ægæ was found to have placed his
name upon the list, although he was in perfect health. When
questioned, he confessed that he was in love with a lady named
Telesippa, who was returning to the sea-coast, and that he had acted
thus in order to be able to follow her. Alexander on hearing this,
enquired who this lady was. Being told that she was a free-born Greek
courtezan, he answered, "I sympathise with your affection, Eurylochus;
but since Telesippa is a free-born woman, let us try if we cannot,
either by presents or arguments, persuade her to remain with us."

XLII. It is wonderful how many letters and about what trifling matters
he found time to write to his friends. For instance, he sent a letter
to Kilikia ordering search to be made for a slave boy belonging to
Seleukus, who had run away, and praising Peukestas because he had
captured Nikon, the runaway slave of Kraterus. He wrote also to
Megabazus about a slave who had taken sanctuary in a temple, ordering
him to catch him when outside of the temple, if possible, but not to
lay hands on him within its precincts.

We are told that when he was sitting as judge to hear men tried for
their lives, he was wont to close one ear with his hand, while the
prosecutor was speaking, in order that he might keep it unbiassed and
impartial to listen to what the accused had to say in his defence. But
later in his life, so many persons were accused before him, and so
many of them truly, that his temper became soured and he inclined to
believe them to be all alike guilty. And he was especially
transported with rage, and made completely pitiless if any one spoke
ill of him, for he valued his reputation more than his life or his

He now set out again in pursuit of Darius, with the intention of
fighting another battle with him: but on hearing that Darius had been
taken by the satrap Bessus, he dismissed all his Thessalian cavalry
and sent them home, giving them a largess of two thousand talents over
and above the pay which was due to them. He now set out on a long and
toilsome journey in pursuit of Darius, for in eleven days he rode more
than five hundred miles, so that his men were terribly distressed,
especially by want of water. One day he met some Macedonians who were
carrying water from a river in skins on the backs of mules. Seeing
Alexander faint with thirst, as it was the hottest time of the day,
they quickly filled a helmet with water and gave it to him to drink.
He asked them to whom they were carrying the water, to which they
answered, "To our own sons; but provided that you live, even if they
should die, we can beget other children." On hearing this he took the
helmet into his hands; but seeing all the horsemen around him eagerly
watching him and coveting the water, he gave it back without tasting
it. He thanked the men for offering it to him, but said, "If I alone
drink it, all these soldiers will be discontented." The soldiers, when
they saw the noble courage and self-denial of Alexander, bade him lead
them on boldly, and urged forward their horses, saying that they felt
neither hunger nor thirst, and did not think themselves to be mortal
men, so long as they had such a king as Alexander to lead them.

XLIII. The whole of his army was equally enthusiastic; yet the
fatigues of the march were so great, that when Alexander burst into
the enemy's camp, only sixty men are said to have followed him. Here
they passed over great heaps of gold and silver, and pursued a long
line of waggons, full of women and children, which were proceeding
along without any drivers, until they had reached the foremost of
them, because they imagined that Darius might be hidden in them. At
last he was found, lying in his chariot, pierced with innumerable
javelins, and just breathing his last. He was able to ask for drink,
and when given some cold water by Polystratus, he said to him, "My
good sir, this is the worst of all my misfortunes that I am unable to
recompense you for your kindness to me; but Alexander will reward you,
and the gods will reward Alexander for his courteous treatment of my
mother and wife and daughters. Wherefore I pray thee, embrace him, as
I embrace thee." With these words he took Polystratus by the hand and
died. When Alexander came up, he showed great grief at the sight, and
covered the body with his own cloak. He afterwards captured Bessus and
tore him asunder, by bending down the tops of trees and tying
different parts of his body to each, and then letting them spring up
again so that each tore off the limb to which it was attached.
Alexander now had the corpse of Darius adorned as became a prince, and
sent it to his mother, while he received his brother Exathres into the
number of his intimate friends.

XLIV. He himself, with a few picked troops, now invaded Hyrkania,
where he discovered an arm of the sea, which appeared to be as large
as the Euxine, or Black Sea, but not so salt. He was unable to obtain
any certain information about it, but conjectured it to be a branch of
the Mæotic lake.[416] Yet geographers, many years before Alexander,
knew well that this, which is entitled the Hyrkanian or Caspian Sea,
is the northernmost of four gulfs proceeding from the exterior ocean.
Here some of the natives surprised the grooms in charge of his horse
Boukephalus, and captured the animal. Alexander was much distressed at
this, and sent a herald to make proclamation that unless his horse
were restored to him, he would massacre the whole tribe with their
wives and children. When, however, they brought back his horse, and
offered to place their chief cities in his hands as a pledge for their
good behaviour, he treated them all with kindness, and paid a ransom
for the horse to those who had captured it.

XLV. From hence he passed into Parthia, where, being at leisure, he
first began to wear the Persian dress, either because he thought that
he should more easily win the hearts of the natives by conforming to
their fashion, or else in order to try the obedience of his Macedonian
soldiers and see whether they might not, by degrees, be brought to pay
him the same respect and observance which the kings of Persia used to
exact from their subjects. He did not, however, completely adopt the
Persian costume, which would have been utterly repugnant to Grecian
ideas, and wore neither the trousers, the coat with long sleeves, nor
the tiara, but his dress, though less simple than the Macedonian, was
still far from being so magnificent or so effeminate as that of the
Persians. He at first only wore this dress when giving audiences to
the natives of the country, or when alone with his more intimate
friends, but afterwards he frequently both drove out publicly and
transacted business in the Persian dress. The sight greatly offended
the Macedonians, but yet they were so filled with admiration for his
courage, that they felt he must be indulged in his fancies about
dress; for besides all his other honourable wounds, he had only a
short time before this been struck by an arrow in the calf of his leg,
so that splinters of the bone came out, and also received such a blow
upon his neck from a stone, that his eyesight was affected for a
considerable time afterwards. Yet he did not cease to expose himself
to danger, but crossed the river Orexartes, which he himself thought
to be the Tanais or Don, and, although suffering from an attack of
dysentery, defeated the Scythians and chased them for many miles.

XLVI. Most historians, amongst whom are Kleitarchus, Polykleitus,
Onesikritus, Antigenes, and Istrus, say that while in this country he
met an Amazon: while Aristobulus, Chares the court-usher, Ptolemy,
Antikleides, Philon of Thebes, and Philippus the herald of festivals,
besides Hekatæus of Eretria, Philip of Chalkis, and Douris of Samos,
say that this is a mere fiction. And this opinion seems to be
corroborated by Alexander himself: for he wrote to Antipater an exact
account of his Scythian campaign, and mentioned that the King of the
Scythians offered him his daughter in marriage, but says nothing about
Amazons. It is said that many years afterwards, when Lysimachus had
made himself king, Onesikritus was reading aloud to him the fourth
book of his History of Alexander, in which mention is made of the
Amazon. Lysimachus asked him with a quiet smile, "And where was I all
the time?" However, Alexander's fame is not impaired if we disbelieve
this story, nor is it increased if we regard it as true.

XLVII. As he feared that the Macedonians would refuse to follow him
any farther, he allowed the great mass of his army to repose itself,
and advanced through Hyrkania with a force of twenty thousand infantry
and three thousand cavalry, all picked men. In a speech addressed to
these select regiments, he declared that the natives of Asia had only
seen them hitherto as if in a dream; and that, if they merely threw
the whole country into disorder and then retired from it, the Asiatics
would attack them as boldly as if they were so many women. Yet he
said, that he permitted those who desired it to leave his service and
return home, merely protesting against being left, with only his
personal friends and a few volunteers, to carry on the noble
enterprise of making Macedonia mistress of the whole world. These are
almost the exact words which he uses in a letter to Antipater, and he
further says that when he had spoken thus, the soldiers burst into a
universal shout, bidding him lead them whithersoever he would. After
this experiment had succeeded with the select troops, it was no
difficult matter to induce the remainder to follow him, but they came
almost of their own accord. He now began to imitate the Asiatic habits
more closely, and endeavoured to assimilate the Macedonian and Asiatic
customs and manners, hoping that by this means his empire, during his
absence, would rest upon a foundation of good will rather than of
force. To further this object he selected thirty thousand native
youths, whom he ordered to be taught to speak the Greek language and
to use the same arms as the Macedonians; and appointed a numerous body
of instructors for them. His marriage with Roxana was due to a genuine
passion, for he was struck by her great beauty when he saw her dance
in a chorus after a feast, but nevertheless the alliance was a very
politic one; for the natives were pleased to see him take a wife from
among themselves, and were charmed with the courteous and honourable
conduct of Alexander, who, although Roxana was the only woman whom he
had ever loved, yet would not approach her until he was lawfully
married to her.

As Alexander perceived that, among his most intimate friends,
Hephæstion encouraged him and furthered his designs, while Kraterus
steadfastly adhered to the Macedonian customs, he made use of the
latter in all transactions with Asiatics, and of the former when
dealing with Greeks and Macedonians. He loved Hephæstion, and
respected Kraterus above all the rest of his friends, and was wont to
say that Hephæstion loved Alexander, but that Kraterus loved the king.
His favour caused constant jealousies between them, so that once in
India they actually drew their swords and fought with one another.
Their friends began to take part in the quarrel on either side, when
Alexander rode up, and bitterly reproached Hephæstion before them all,
saying that he must be a fool and a madman if he did not see, that
without Alexander's favour he would be nobody. Privately also he
sharply rebuked Kraterus; and calling them both before him, made them
be friends again, swearing by Zeus Ammon, and all the gods, that they
were the two men whom he loved best in the world; but that if he heard
of any more quarrelling between them he would put them both to death,
or at least him who began the quarrel. In consequence of this, it is
said that there never again, even in sport, was any dispute between

XLVIII. Philotas, the son of Parmenio, was a man of much importance
among the Macedonians; for he was courageous and hardy, and the most
liberal man, and the most devoted to his friends in all the army
except Alexander himself. We are told of him that once a friend of his
came to him to borrow money, and he at once commanded one of his
servants to let him have it. His purse-bearer answered that he had no
money, upon which Philotas exclaimed, "What! Have I no plate or
furniture upon which you can raise money for my friend?"

His lofty carriage, his immense wealth, and the splendour in which he
lived, caused him to appear too great for a private station, while
his pride and vulgar ostentation made him generally disliked. His own
father, Parmenio, once said to him: "My son, I pray you show a little
more humility." He had long been an object of suspicion to Alexander,
who was kept constantly informed about him by the following
means:--After the battle of Issus, when the baggage of Darius was
captured at Damascus, there was taken among the captives a beautiful
Greek girl, named Antigone. She fell to the lot of Philotas, and
became his mistress; and the young man, who was much enamoured of her,
used to boast to her over his wine that all the conquests of the
Macedonians were really due to the prowess of his father and himself,
and that Alexander was merely a foolish boy, who owed his crown and
his empire to their exertions. Antigone repeated these expressions to
one of her friends, who, as was natural, did not keep them secret, so
that at last they reached the ears of Kraterus. Kraterus privately
introduced the woman to Alexander; and he, after he had heard her
repeat what she had been told, ordered her to take secret note of the
confidential expressions of Philotas, and to report them, from time to
time, to himself.

XLIX. Philotas had no idea that he was being spied upon in this
manner, and in his conversation with Antigone frequently spoke
insolently and slightingly of his sovereign. Alexander, although he
had accumulated terrible proofs of treason against Philotas,
nevertheless remained silent, either because he felt assured of the
loyalty of Parmenio, or because he feared to attack a man of such
power and importance. At length, however, a Macedonian of Chalastra,
named Simnus, formed a plot against Alexander's life, and invited a
young man, named Nikomachus, his own intimate friend, to join him.
Nikomachus refused compliance, and told the whole story of the plot to
his brother, Kebalinus, who at once had an interview with Philotas,
and bade him bring them at once to Alexander, as persons who had a
most important communication to make to him. Philotas, however, for
some reason or other, did not bring them before Alexander, but said
that the king was not at leisure to hear them, as he was engaged in
more important business. This he repeated on a second occasion, and
as his behaviour made the two brothers suspect his loyalty, they
communicated with another officer, and by his means obtained an
audience. They now told Alexander about the design of Limnus, and also
said that Philotas had acted very luke-warmly in the matter, as they
had twice told him that there was a plot against Alexander, and yet he
had, on each occasion, disregarded their warning.

This greatly enraged Alexander: and as when Limnus was arrested he
defended himself desperately and was killed in the scuffle, he was yet
more disturbed, as he feared he had now lost all clue to the plot. He
now openly showed his displeasure with Philotas, and encouraged all
his enemies to say boldly that it was folly of the king to imagine
that an obscure man like Limnus would have ventured to form a
conspiracy against his life, but that Limnus was merely a tool in the
hands of some more powerful person; and that if he wished to discover
the real authors of the plot, he must seek for them among those who
would have been most benefited by its success. Finding that the king
lent a ready ear to suggestions of this kind, they soon furnished him
with an overwhelming mass of evidence of the treasonable designs of
Philotas. Philotas was at once arrested, and put to the torture in the
presence of the chief officers of the Macedonian army, while Alexander
himself sat behind a curtain to hear what he would say. It is said
that when Alexander heard Philotas piteously beg Hephæstion for mercy,
he exclaimed aloud, "Are you such a coward as this, Philotas, and yet
contrive such daring plots?" To be brief, Philotas was put to death,
and immediately afterwards Alexander sent to Media and caused Parmenio
to be assassinated, although he was a man who had performed the most
important services for Philip, had, more than any other of the older
Macedonians, encouraged Alexander to invade Asia, and had seen two of
his three sons die in battle before he perished with the third. This
cruelty made many of the friends of Alexander fear him, and especially
Antipater,[417] who now formed a secret league with the Ætolians, who
also feared Alexander because when he heard of the destruction of the
people of Œneadæ, he said that he himself, and not the sons of the
people of Œneadæ, would be revenged upon the Ætolians.

L. Not long after this followed the murder of Kleitus, which, if
simply told, seems more cruel than that of Philotas; but if we
consider the circumstances under which it took place, and the
provocation which was given, we shall treat it rather as a misfortune
which befel Alexander during a fit of drunken passion than as a
deliberate act. It happened as follows. Some men came from the
sea-coast, bringing Greek grapes as a present to Alexander. He admired
their bloom and ripeness, and invited Kleitus to see them, meaning to
present him with some of them. Kleitus was engaged in offering
sacrifice, but on receiving this summons left his sacrifice and went
to the king: upon which, three of the sheep which he was about to
offer up as victims, followed him. When Alexander heard of this, he
consulted his soothsayers, Aristander, and Kleomantes the Laconian. As
they reported that this was an evil omen, he bade them at once offer
an expiatory sacrifice on behalf of Kleitus; for he himself, three
days before, had dreamed a strange dream about Kleitus, that he had
seen him sitting dressed in black amongst the sons of Parmenio, who
were all of them dead. Before, however, the sacrifices on behalf of
Kleitus had been performed, he came to the banquet, before which
Alexander himself had offered sacrifice to the Dioskuri.

After all had drunk heavily, a song was sung which had been composed
by one Pranichus, or Pierion according to some writers, in which the
generals who had recently been defeated by the barbarians were held up
to public shame and ridicule. The elder Macedonians were vexed at
this, and blamed both the writer of the song and the man who sung it,
but Alexander and his associates were much pleased with it, and bade
the singer go on. Kleitus, who was now very much excited by drink and
who was naturally of a fierce and independent temper, was especially
annoyed, and said that it was not right for Macedonians to be thus
insulted in the presence of enemies and barbarians, for that, in spite
of their misfortune, they were far braver men than those who ridiculed
them. Alexander answered that Kleitus, when he called cowardice a
misfortune, was no doubt pleading his own cause: at which reproach
Kleitus sprang to his feet, and exclaimed, "my cowardice at any rate
saved the life of the son of the gods, when he turned his back to the
sword of Spithridates; so that now, by the blood and wounds of the
Macedonians, you have become so great a man that you pretend to be the
child of Ammon, and disown your father Philip."

LI. Alexander, stung to the quick by these words, said, "Villain, do
you suppose that you will be allowed to spread these calumnies against
me, rendering the Macedonians disaffected, and yet go unpunished?"
"Too much are we punished," answered Kleitus, "when we see such a
reward as this given us for all our hard service, but we congratulate
those of us who are dead, because they died before they saw
Macedonians beaten with Median rods, and begging Persian attendants to
procure them an audience of their king." When Kleitus spoke his mind
thus boldly, Alexander's intimate friends answered with bitter
reproaches, but the older men endeavoured to pacify them. Alexander
now turning to Xenodochus of Kardia and Astenius of Kolophon, asked,
"Do not the Greeks seem to you to treat the Macedonians as if they
were beasts, and they themselves were more than mortal men? "Kleitus,
however, would not hold his peace, but went on to say that if
Alexander could not bear to hear men speak their mind, he had better
not invite free-born people to his table, and ought to confine himself
to the society of barbarians and slaves who would pay respect to his
Persian girdle and striped[418] tunic. At this speech Alexander could
no longer restrain his passion, but seized an apple from the table,
hurled it at Kleitus, and began to feel for his dagger. Aristophanes,
one of his body-guard, had already secreted it, and the rest now
pressed round him imploring him to be quiet. He however leaped to his
feet, and, as if in a great emergency, ehouted in the Macedonian
tongue to the foot-guards to turn out. He bade the trumpeter sound an
alarm, and as the man hesitated and refused, struck him with his fist.
This man afterwards gained great credit for his conduct, as it was
thought that by it he had saved the whole camp from being thrown into
an uproar. As Kleitus would not retract what he had said, his friends
seized him and forced him out of the room. But he re-entered by
another door, and in an offensive and insolent tone began to recite
the passage from the Andromache of Euripides, which begins,

     "Ah me! in Greece an evil custom reigns," &c.

Upon this Alexander snatched a lance from one of his guards, and ran
Kleitus through the body with it, just as he was drawing aside the
curtain and preparing to enter the room. Kleitus fell with a loud
groan, and died on the spot. Alexander, when he came to himself, and
saw his friends all standing round in mute reproach, snatched the
spear out of the corpse, and would have thrust it into his own neck,
but was forcibly witheld by his guards, who laid hold of him and
carried him into his bed-chamber.

LII. Alexander spent the whole night in tears, and on the next day was
so exhausted by his agony of grief as to be speechless, and only able
to sigh heavily. At length his friends, alarmed at his silence, broke
into the room. He took no notice of any of their attempts at
consolation, except that he seemed to make signs of assent when
Aristander the soothsayer told him that all this had been preordained
to take place, and reminded him of his dream about Kleitus. His
friends now brought to him Kallisthenes the philosopher, who was a
nephew of Aristotle, and Anaxarchus of Abdera. Kallisthenes
endeavoured to soothe his grief, by kind and gentle consolation, but
Anaxarchus, a man who had always pursued an original method of his own
in philosophical speculations, and who was thought to be overbearing
and harsh-tempered by his friends, as soon as he entered the room
exclaimed, "This is that Great Alexander, upon whom the eyes of the
world are fixed: there he lies like a slave, fearing what men will say
of him, although he ought rather to dictate to them what they should
think right, as becomes the master of the world, and not to be
influenced by their foolish opinions. Know you not," asked he "that
Law and Justice sit beside the throne of Zeus, and make everything
which is done by those in power to be lawful and right?" By such
discourse as this Anaxarchus assuaged Alexander's sorrow, but
encouraged his savage and lawless disposition. He gained great favour
for himself, and was able to influence Alexander against Kallisthenes,
who was already no favourite with him on account of his upright,
uncompromising spirit. It is related that once at table, when the
conversation turned upon the seasons, and upon the climate of Asia,
Kallisthenes argued that it was colder in the country where they were
than in Greece; and when Anaxarchus vehemently contradicted this, he
said, "Why, you must admit that this country is the colder of the two;
for in Greece you used to wear only one cloak all through the winter,
whereas here you sit down to dinner wrapped in three Persian rugs."
This reply made Anaxarchus more his enemy than before.

LIII. Kallisthenes made all the sophists and flatterers of Alexander
jealous of him because he was much sought after by the young men for
his learning, and was liked by the elder men on account of his sober,
dignified, and austere life, which confirmed the common report, that
he had come to the court of Alexander with the intention of prevailing
upon him to refound his native city, and collect together its
scattered citizens. His high moral character gained him many enemies,
but he himself gave some colour to their accusations by his conduct in
constantly refusing all invitations, and by behaving himself with
gravity and silence when in society, as if he were displeased with his
company. His manner had caused Alexander himself to say of him, "I
hate a philosopher who is not wise in his own interest." It is related
that once at a great banquet, when sitting over their wine,
Kallisthenes was asked to speak in praise of the Macedonians, and that
he at once poured forth such a fluent and splendid eulogy that all the
company rose, vehemently applauding, and threw their garlands to him.
At this Alexander remarked that, as Euripides says,

     "On noble subjects, all men can speak well."

"Now," said he, "show us your ability by blaming the Macedonians, in
order that they may be made better men by having their shortcomings
pointed out." Kallisthenes hereupon began to speak in a depreciatory
strain, and told many home-truths about the Macedonians, pointing out
that Philip had become strong only because Greece was weakened by
faction, and quoting the line,

     "In times of trouble, bad men rise to fame."

This speech caused the Macedonians to hate him most bitterly, and
provoked Alexander to say that Kallisthenes had made a display, not of
his own abilities, but of his dislike to the Macedonians.

LIV. This is the account which Strœbus, Kallisthenes's reader, is said
by Hermippus to have given to Aristotle about the quarrel between
Kallisthenes and Alexander; and he added that Kallisthenes was well
aware that he was out of favour with the king, and twice or thrice
when setting out to wait on him would repeat the line from the Iliad,

     "Patroklus, too, hath died, a better man than thou."

On hearing this Aristotle acutely remarked, that Kallisthenes had
great ability and power of speech, but no common sense. He, like a
true philosopher, refused to kneel and do homage to Alexander, and
alone had the spirit to express in public what all the oldest and best
Macedonians privately felt. By his refusal he relieved the Greeks and
Alexander from a great disgrace, but ruined himself, because he seemed
to use force rather than persuasion to attain his object. We are told
by Charon of Mitylene that once when at table, Alexander, after
drinking, passed the cup to one of his friends; and that he after
receiving it, rose, stood by the hearth, and after drinking knelt
before Alexander: after which he kissed him and resumed his seat. All
the guests did this in turn until the cup came to Kallisthenes. The
king, who was conversing to Hephæstion, did not take any notice of
what he did, and after drinking he also came forward to kiss him, when
Demetrius, who was surnamed Pheidon, said, "My king, do not kiss him,
for he alone has not done homage to you." Upon this Alexander avoided
kissing Kallisthenes, who said in a loud voice, "Then I will go away
with the loss of a kiss."

LV. The breach thus formed was widened by Hephæstion, who declared
that Kallisthenes had agreed with him to kneel before Alexander, and
then had broken his compact; and this story was believed by Alexander.
After this came Lysimachus and Hagnon, and many others, who accused
Kallisthenes of giving himself great airs, as though he were a queller
of despots, and said that he had a large following among the younger
men, who looked up to him as being the only free man among so many
myriads of people. These accusations were more easily believed to be
true because at this time the plot of Hermolaus was discovered; and it
was said that when Hermolaus enquired of Kallisthenes how one might
become the most famous man in the world, he answered, "By killing the
most famous man in the world." He was even said to have encouraged
Hermolaus to make the attempt, bidding him have no fear of Alexander's
golden throne, and reminding him that he would have to deal with a man
who was both wounded and in ill-health. Yet none of those concerned in
Hermolaus's conspiracy mentioned the name of Kallisthenes, even under
the most exquisite tortures. Alexander himself, in the letters which
he wrote to Kraterus, Attalus, and Alketas immediately after the
discovery of the plot, states that the royal pages, when put to the
torture, declared that they alone had conspired, and that they had no
accomplices. "The pages," Alexander goes on to say, "were stoned to
death by the Macedonians, but I will myself punish the sophist, and
those who sent him hither, and those who receive into their cities men
that plot against me." In these words he evidently alludes to
Aristotle: for Kallisthenes was brought up in his house, being the son
of Hero, Aristotle's first cousin. Some writers tell us that
Kallisthenes was hanged by the orders of Alexander; others that he was
thrown into chains and died of sickness. Chares informs us that he was
kept in confinement for seven months, in order that he might be tried
in the presence of Aristotle himself, but that during the time when
Alexander was wounded in India, he died of excessive corpulence,
covered with vermin.

LVI. This, however, took place after the period of which we write. At
this time Demaratus of Corinth, although an elderly man, was induced
to travel as far as the court of Alexander: and when he beheld him,
said that the Greeks who had died before they saw Alexander sitting
upon the throne of Darius, had lost one of the greatest pleasures in
the world.

Demaratus by this speech gained great favour with the king, but lived
but a short time to enjoy it, as he was soon carried off by sickness.
His funeral was conducted with the greatest magnificence, for the
whole army was employed to raise a mound of great extent, and eighty
cubits high, as a memorial of him; while his remains were placed in a
splendidly equipped four-horse chariot and sent back to the sea-coast.

LVII. As Alexander was now about to invade India, and observed that
his army had become unwieldy and difficult to move in consequence of
the mass of plunder with which the soldiers were encumbered, he
collected all the baggage-waggons together one morning at daybreak,
and first burned his own and those of his companions, after which he
ordered those of the Macedonians to be set on fire. This measure
appears to have been more energetic than the occasion really required;
and yet it proved more ruinous in the design than in the execution:
for although some of the soldiers were vexed at the order, most of
them with enthusiastic shouts distributed their most useful property
among those who were in want, burning and destroying all the rest with
a cheerful alacrity which raised Alexander's spirits to the highest
pitch. Yet Alexander was terrible and pitiless in all cases of
dereliction of duty. He put to death Menander, one of his personal
friends, because he did not remain in a fort, where he had been
appointed to command the garrison; and he shot dead with his own hand
Orsodates, a native chief who had revolted from him. At this time it
happened that a ewe brought forth a lamb, upon whose head was a tiara
in shape and colour like that of the King of Persia, with stones
hanging on each side of it.

Alexander, much disturbed at this portent, was purified by the
priests at Babylon, whom he was accustomed to make use of for this
purpose, but told his friends that he was alarmed for their sake, and
not for his own, as he feared that if he fell, heaven might transfer
his crown to some unworthy and feeble successor. However, he was soon
cheered by a better omen. The chief of Alexander's household servants,
a Macedonian named Proxenus, while digging a place to pitch the royal
tent near the river Oxus, discovered a well, full of a smooth, fatty
liquid. When the upper layer was removed, there spouted forth a clear
oil, exactly like olive oil in smell and taste, and incomparably
bright and clear: and that, too, in a country where no olive trees
grew. It is said that the water of the Oxus itself is very soft and
pleasant, and that it causes the skin of those who bathe in it to
become sleek and glossy. Alexander was greatly delighted with this
discovery, as we learn from a letter which he wrote to Antipater, in
which he speaks of this as being one of the most important and
manifest signs of the divine favour which had ever been vouchsafed to
him. The soothsayers held that the omen portended, that the campaign
would be glorious, but laborious and difficult: for oil has been given
by the gods to men to refresh them after labour.

LVIII. Alexander when on this expedition ran terrible risks in battle,
and was several times grievously wounded. His greatest losses were
caused, however, by the want of provisions, and by the severity of the
climate. He himself, striving to overcome fortune by valour, thought
nothing impossible to a brave man, and believed that, while daring
could surmount all obstacles, cowardice could not be safe behind any
defences. We are told that when he was besieging the fortress of
Sisymithres, which was placed upon a steep and inaccessible rock, his
soldiers despaired of being able to take it. He asked Oxyartes what
sort of a man Sisymithres himself was in respect of courage. When
Oxyartes answered that he was the greatest coward in the world,
Alexander said 'You tell me, that the fortress can be taken; for its
spirit is weak." And indeed he did take it, by playing upon the fears
of Sisymithres. Once he was attacking another fortress, also situated
upon the top of a lofty rock. While he was addressing words of
encouragement to the younger Macedonians, finding that one of them was
named Alexander, he said "You must this day prove yourself a brave
man, if but for your name's sake." The youth fought most bravely, but
fell, to the great grief of Alexander. When he reached the city named
Nysa,[419] the Macedonians were unwilling to attack it, because a very
deep river ran past its walls. "Unlucky that I am," exclaimed
Alexander, "why did I never learn to swim?" Saying thus, he prepared
to cross the river just as he was, with his shield upon his left arm.
After an unsuccessful assault, ambassadors were sent by the besieged,
who were surprised to find Alexander dressed in his armour, covered
with dust and blood. A cushion was now brought to him, and he bade the
eldest of the ambassadors seat himself upon it. This man was named
Akouphis: and he was so much struck with the splendid courtesy of
Alexander, that he asked him what his countrymen must do, in order to
make him their friend. Alexander replied that they must make Akouphis
their chief, and send a hundred of their best men to him. Upon this
Akouphis laughed, and answered: "I shall rule them better, O King, if
I send the worst men to you and not the best."

LIX. There was one Taxiles,[420] who was said to be king of a part of
India as large as Egypt, with a rich and fertile soil. He was also a
shrewd man, and came and embraced Alexander, saying, "Why should we
two fight one another, Alexander, since you have not come to take away
from us the water which we drink nor the food which we eat; and these
are the only things about which it is worth while for sensible men to
fight? As for all other kinds of property, if I have more than you, I
am willing to bestow it upon you, or, if you are the richer, I would
willingly be placed in your debt by receiving some from you."
Alexander was delighted with these words, and giving him his right
hand as a pledge of his friendship exclaimed, "Perhaps you suppose
that by this arrangement we shall become friends without a contest;
but you are mistaken, for I will contend with you in good offices, and
will take care that you do not overcome me." Saying thus, they
exchanged presents, amongst which Alexander gave Taxiles a thousand
talents of coined money. This conduct of his greatly vexed his
friends; but caused him to be much more favourably regarded by many of
the natives.

After this, Alexander, who had suffered great losses from the Indian
mercenary troops who flocked to defend the cities which he attacked,
made a treaty of alliance with them in a certain town, and afterwards,
as they were going away set upon them while they were on the road and
killed them all. This is the greatest blot upon his fame; for in all
the rest of his wars, he always acted with good faith as became a
king. He was also much troubled by the philosophers who attended him,
because they reproached those native princes who joined him, and
encouraged the free states to revolt and regain their independence.
For this reason, he caused not a few of them to be hanged.

LX. His campaign against king Porus is described at length in his own
letters. He tells us that the river Hydaspes[421] ran between the two
camps, and that Porus with his elephants watched the further bank, and
prevented his crossing. Alexander himself every day caused a great
noise and disturbance to be made in his camp, in order that the enemy
might be led to disregard his movements: and at last upon a dark and
stormy night he took a division of infantry and the best of the
cavalry, marched to a considerable distance from the enemy, and
crossed over into an island of no great extent. Here he was exposed to
a terrible storm of rain, with thunder and lightning; but, although
several of his men were struck dead, he pressed on, crossed the
island, and gained the furthermost bank of the river. The Hydaspes was
flooded by the rain, and the stream ran fiercely down this second
branch, while the Macedonians could with difficulty keep their
footing upon this slippery and uneven bottom Here it was that
Alexander is said to have exclaimed, "O ye Athenians, what toils do I
undergo to obtain your praise."

This, however, rests only on the authority of the historian
Oneskritus, for Alexander himself relates that they abandoned their
rafts, and waded through this second torrent under arms, with the
water up to their breasts. After crossing, he himself rode on some
twenty furlongs in advance of the infantry, thinking that if the enemy
met him with their cavalry alone, he would be able to rout them
easily, and that, if they advanced their entire force, before a battle
could be begun, he would be joined by his own infantry. And indeed he
soon fell in with a thousand horse and sixty war chariots of the
enemy, which he routed, capturing all the chariots, and slaying four
hundred of the horsemen. Porus now perceived that Alexander himself
had crossed the river, and advanced to attack him with all his army,
except only a detachment which he left to prevent the Macedonians from
crossing the river at their camp. Alexander, alarmed at the great
numbers of the enemy, and at their elephants, did not attack their
centre, but charged them on the left wing, ordering Koinus to attack
them on the right. The enemy on each wing were routed, but retired
towards their main body, where the elephants stood. Here an obstinate
and bloody contest took place, insomuch that it was the eighth hour of
the day before the Indians were finally overcome. These particulars we
are told by the chief actor in the battle himself, in his letters.
Most historians are agreed that Porus stood four cubits[422] and a
span high, and was so big a man that when mounted on his elephant,
although it was a very large one, he seemed as well proportioned to
the animal as an ordinary man is to a horse. This elephant showed
wonderful sagacity and care for its king, as while he was still
vigorous it charged the enemy and overthrew them, but when it
perceived that he was fainting from his wounds, fearing that he might
fall, it quietly knelt on the ground, and then gently drew the spears
out of his body with its trunk. When Porus was captured, Alexander
asked him how he wished to be treated. "Like a king," answered Porus.
Alexander then enquired if he had nothing else to ask about his
treatment. "Everything," answered Porus, "is comprised in these words,
like a king." Alexander now replaced Porus in his kingdom, with the
title of satrap, and also added a large province to it, subduing the
independent inhabitants. This country was said to have contained
fifteen separate tribes, five thousand considerable cities and
innumerable villages; besides another district three times as large,
over which he appointed Philippus, one of his personal friends, to be

LXI. After this battle with Porus, Alexander's horse Boukephalus died,
not immediately, but some time afterwards. Most historians say that he
died of wounds received in the battle, but Onesikritus tells us that
he died of old age and overwork, for he had reached his thirtieth
year. Alexander was greatly grieved at his loss, and sorrowed for him
as much as if he had lost one of his most intimate friends. He founded
a city as a memorial of him upon the banks of the Hydaspes, which he
named Boukephalia. It is also recorded that when he lost a favourite
dog called Peritas, which he had brought up from a whelp, and of which
he was very fond, he founded a city and called it by the dog's name.
The historian Sotion tells us that he heard this from Potamon of

LXII. The battle with King Porus made the Macedonians very unwilling
to advance farther into India. They had overcome Porus with the
greatest difficulty, as he brought against them a force of twenty
thousand infantry and two thousand cavalry, and now offered the most
violent opposition to Alexander, who wished to cross the river Ganges.
This river, they heard, was thirty-two furlongs wide and a hundred
cubits deep, while its further banks were completely covered with
armed men, horses and elephants, for it was said that the kings of the
Gandaritæ and Præsiæ were awaiting his attack with an army of eighty
thousand horsemen, two hundred thousand foot soldiers, eight thousand
war chariots, and six thousand elephants; nor was this any
exaggeration, for not long afterwards Androkottus, the king of this
country, presented five hundred elephants to Seleukus, and overran and
subdued the whole of India with an army of six hundred thousand men.

Alexander at first retired to his tent in a rage, and shut himself up
there, not feeling any gratitude to those who had prevented his
crossing the Ganges, but regarding a retreat as an acknowledgment of
defeat. However, after his friends had argued with him, and his
soldiers had come to the door of his tent, begging him with tears in
their eyes to go no farther, he relented, and gave orders for a
retreat. He now contrived many ingenious devices to impress the
natives, as, for instance, he caused arms, and bridles and mangers for
horses to be made of much more than the usual size, and left them
scattered about. He also set up altars, which even to the present day
are reverenced by the kings of the Præsiæ, who cross the river to
them, and offer sacrifice upon them in the Greek fashion. Androkottus
himself, who was then a lad, saw Alexander himself and afterwards used
to declare that Alexander might easily have conquered the whole
country, as the then king was hated by his subjects on account of his
mean and wicked disposition.

LXIII. After this, Alexander wishing to see the outer ocean,[423]
caused many rafts and vessels managed with oars to be built, and
proceeded in a leisurely manner down the Indus. His voyage, however,
was not an idle one, nor was it unaccompanied with danger, for as he
passed down the river, he disembarked, attacked the tribes on the
banks, and subdued them all. When he was among the Malli, who are said
to be the most warlike tribe in India, he very nearly lost his life.
He was besieging their chief city, and after the garrison had been
driven from the walls by volleys of missiles, he was the first man to
ascend a scaling ladder and mount the walls. The ladder now broke, so
that no more could mount, and as the enemy began to assemble inside at
the foot of the wall and shoot up at him from below, Alexander, alone
against a host, leaped down amongst them, and by good luck, alighted
on his feet. His armour rattled loudly as he leaped, and made the
natives think that a bright light was emitted from his body; so that
at first they gave way and fled from him. But when they saw that he
was attended by only two followers, some of them attacked him at close
quarters with swords and spears, while one standing a little way off
shot an arrow at him with such force and with such good aim, that it
passed through his corslet and imbedded itself in the bones of his
breast. As he shrank back when the arrow struck him, the man who had
shot it ran up to him with a drawn sword in his hand. Peukestas and
Limnæus now stood before Alexander to protect him. Both were wounded,
Limnæus mortally; but Peukestas managed to stand firm, while Alexander
despatched the Indian with his own hand. Alexander was wounded in many
places, and at last received a blow on the neck with a club, which
forced him to lean his back against the wall, still facing the enemy.
The Macedonians now swarmed round him, snatched him up just as he
fainted away, and carried him insensible to his tent. A rumour now ran
through the camp that he was dead, and his attendants with great
difficulty sawed through the wooden shaft of the arrow, and so got off
his corslet. They next had to pluck out the barbed head of the arrow,
which was firmly fixed in one of his ribs. This arrow-head is said to
have measured four fingers-breadths[424] in length, and three in
width. When it was pulled out, he swooned away, so that he nearly
died, but at length recovered his strength. When he was out of danger,
though still very weak, as he had to keep himself under careful
treatment for a long time, he heard a disturbance without, and
learning that the Macedonians were anxious to see him, took his cloak
and went out to them. After sacrificing to the gods for the recovery
of his health, he started again on his journey, and passed through a
great extent of country and past many considerable cities, all of
which he subdued.

LXIV. He captured ten of the Indian philosophers called
Gymnosophistæ;[425] who had been instrumental in causing Sabbas to
revolt, and had done much mischief to the Macedonians. These men are
renowned for their short, pithy answers, and Alexander put difficult
questions to all of them, telling them that he would first put to
death the man who answered him worst, and so the rest in order. The
first was asked, whether he thought the living or the dead to be the
more numerous. He answered, "The living, for the dead are not."

The second was asked, which breeds the largest animals, the sea or the
land. He answered, "The land, for the sea is only a part of it."

The third was asked, which is the cleverest of beasts. He answered,
"That which man has not yet discovered."

The fourth was asked why he made Sabbas rebel. He answered, "Because I
wished him either to live or to die with honour."

The fifth was asked, which he thought was first, the day or the night.
He answered, "The day was first, by one day." As he saw that the king
was surprised at this answer, he added, "impossible questions require
impossible answers."

Alexander now asked the sixth how a man could make himself most
beloved. He answered, "By being very powerful, and yet not feared by
his subjects."

Of the remaining three, the first one was asked, how a man could
become a god. He answered, "By doing that which is impossible for a
man to do."

The next was asked, which was the stronger, life or death. He
answered, "Life, because it endures such terrible suffering."

The last, being asked how long it was honourable for a man to live,
answered, "As long as he thinks it better for him to live than to

Upon this Alexander turned to the judge and asked him to pronounce
his decision. He said that they had answered each one worse than the
other. "Then," said Alexander, "you shall yourself be put to death for
having given such a verdict." "Not so," said he, "O king, unless you
mean to belie your own words, for you said at the beginning that you
would put to death him who gave the worst answer."

LXV. Alexander now gave them presents and dismissed them unhurt. He
also sent Onesikritus to the most renowned of them, who lived a life
of serene contemplation, desiring that they would come to him. This
Onesikritus was a philosopher of the school of Diogenes the cynic. One
of the Indians, named Kalanus, is said to have received him very
rudely, and to have proudly bidden him to take off his clothes and
speak to him naked, as otherwise he would not hold any conversation
with him, even if he came from Zeus himself. Dandamis, another of the
Gymnosophists, was of a milder mood, and when he had been told of
Sokrates, Pythagoras, and Diogenes, said that they appeared to him to
have been wise men, but to have lived in too great bondage to the
laws. Other writers say that Dandamis said nothing more than "For what
purpose has Alexander come all the way hither?" However, Taxiles
persuaded Kalanus to visit Alexander. His real name was Sphines: but
as in the Indian tongue he saluted all he met with the word 'Kale,'
the Greeks named him Kalanus. This man is said to have shown to
Alexander a figure representing his empire, in the following manner.
He flung on the ground a dry, shrunken hide, and then trod upon the
outside of it, but when he trod it down in one place, it rose up in
all the others. He walked all round the edge of it, and showed that
this kept taking place until at length he stepped into the middle, and
so made it all lie flat. This image was intended to signify that
Alexander ought to keep his strength concentrated in the middle of his
empire, and not wander about on distant journeys.

LXVI. Alexander's voyage down the Indus and its tributaries, to the
sea-coast, took seven months. On reaching the ocean he sailed to an
island which he himself called Skillustis, but which was generally
known as Psiltukis. Here he landed and sacrificed to the gods, after
which he explored the sea and the coast as far as he could reach.
Having done this, he turned back, after praying to the gods that no
conqueror might ever transcend this, the extreme limit of his
conquests. He ordered his fleet to follow the line of the coast,
keeping India on their right hand: and he gave Nearchus the supreme
command, with Onesikritus as chief pilot. He, himself, marched through
the country of the Oreitæ, where he endured terrible sufferings from
scarcity of provisions, and lost so many men that he scarcely brought
back home from India the fourth part of his army, which originally
amounted to a hundred and twenty thousand foot, and fifteen thousand
horse. Most of the men perished from sickness, bad food, and the
excessive heat of the sun, and many from sheer hunger, as they had to
march through an uncultivated region, inhabited only by a few
miserable savages, with a stunted breed of cattle whose flesh had
acquired a rank and disagreeable taste through their habit of feeding
on sea-fish.

After a terrible march of sixty days, the army passed through this
desert region, and reached Gedrosia, where the men at once received
abundant supplies of food, which were furnished by the chiefs of the
provinces which they entered.

LXVII. After he had refreshed his troops here for a little, Alexander
led them in a joyous revel for seven days through Karmania.[426] He,
himself, feasted continually, night and day, with his companions, who
sat at table with him upon a lofty stage drawn by eight horses, so
that all men could see them. After the king's equipage followed
numberless other waggons, some with hangings of purple and embroidered
work, and others with canopies of green boughs, which were constantly
renewed, containing the rest of Alexander's friends and officers, all
crowned with flowers and drinking wine. There was not a shield, a
helmet, or a pike, to be seen, but all along the road the soldiers
were dipping cups, and horns, and earthenware vessels into great jars
of liquor and drinking one another's healths, some drinking as they
marched along, while others sat by the roadside. Everywhere might be
heard the sound of flutes and pipes, and women singing and dancing;
while with all this dissolute march the soldiers mingled rough jokes,
as if the god Dionysus himself were amongst them and attended on their
merry procession. At the capital of Gedrosia, Alexander again halted
his army, and refreshed them with feasting and revelry. It is said
that he himself, after having drunk hard, was watching a contest
between several choruses, and that his favourite Bagoas won the prize,
and then came across the theatre and seated himself beside him,
dressed as he was and wearing his crown as victor. The Macedonians,
when they saw this, applauded vehemently, and cried out to Alexander
to kiss him, until at length he threw his arms round him and kissed

LXVIII. He was now much pleased at being joined by Nearchus and his
officers, and took so much interest in their accounts of their voyage,
that he wished to sail down the Euphrates himself with a great fleet,
and then to coast round Arabia and Libya, and so enter the
Mediterranean sea through the pillars of Herakles.[427] He even began
to build many ships at Thapsakus, and to collect sailors and pilots
from all parts of the world, but the severe campaigns which he had
just completed in India, the wound which he had received among the
Malli, and the great losses which his army had sustained in crossing
the desert, had made many of his subjects doubt whether he was ever
likely to return alive, and had encouraged them to revolt, while his
absence had led many of his satraps and viceroys to act in an
extremely arbitrary and despotic manner, so that his whole empire was
in a most critical condition, and full of conspiracies and seditious
risings. Olympias and Kleopatra[428] had attacked and driven out
Antipater, and had divided the kingdom between themselves, Olympias
taking Epirus, and Kleopatra Macedonia. When Alexander heard this, he
said that his mother had proved herself the wiser of the two; for the
Macedonians never would endure to be ruled by a woman. He now sent
Nearchus back to the sea, determining to make war all along the coast,
and coming down in person to punish the most guilty of his officers.
He killed Oxyartes, one of the sons of Abouletes (the satrap of
Susiana) with his own hands, with a sarissa or Macedonian pike.
Abouletes had made no preparations to receive Alexander, but offered
him three thousand talents of silver. Alexander ordered the money to
be thrown down for the horses; and as they could not eat it, he said
"What is the use of your having prepared this for me?" and ordered
Abouletes to be cast into prison.

LXIX. While Alexander was in Persis[429] he first renewed the old
custom that whenever the king came there he should give every woman a
gold piece. On account of this custom we are told that many of the
Persian kings came but seldom to Persis, and that Ochus never came at
all, but exiled himself from his native country through his
niggardliness. Shortly afterwards Alexander discovered that the
sepulchre of Cyrus had been broken into, and put the criminal to
death, although he was a citizen of Pella[430] of some distinction,
named Polemarchus. When he had read the inscription upon the tomb, he
ordered it to be cut in Greek letters also. The inscription ran as
follows: "O man, whosoever thou art, and whencesoever thou comest--for
I know that thou shalt come--I am Cyrus, who won the empire for the
Persians. I pray thee, do not grudge me this little earth that
covereth my body." These words made a deep impression upon Alexander,
and caused him to meditate upon the uncertainty and changefulness of
human affairs. About this time, Kalanus, who had for some days been
suffering from some internal disorder, begged that a funeral pile
might be erected for him. He rode up to it on horseback, said a
prayer, poured a libation for himself and cut off a lock of his own
hair, as is usual at a sacrifice, and then, mounting the pile, shook
hands with those Macedonians who were present, bidding them be of good
cheer that day, and drink deep at the king's table. He added, that he
himself should shortly see the king at Babylon. Having spoken thus he
lay down and covered himself over. He did not move when the fire
reached him, but remained in the same posture until he was consumed,
thus sacrificing himself to the gods after the manner of the Indian
philosophers. Many years afterwards another Indian, a friend of Cæsar,
did the like in the city of Athens; and at the present day his
sepulchre is shown under the name of "the Indian's tomb."

LXX. After Alexander left the funeral pyre, he invited many of his
friends and chief officers to dinner, and offered a prize to the man
who could drink most unmixed wine. Promachus, who won it, drank as
much as four choes.[431] He was presented with a golden crown worth a
talent, and lived only three days afterwards. Of the others, Chares,
the historian, tells us that forty-one died of an extreme cold that
came upon them in their drunkenness.

Alexander now celebrated the marriage of many of his companions at
Susa. He himself married Statira, the daughter of Darius, and bestowed
the noblest of the Persian ladies upon the bravest of his men. He gave
a splendid banquet on the occasion of his marriage, inviting to it not
only all the newly married couples, but all those Macedonians who were
already married to Persian wives. It is said that nine thousand guests
were present at this feast, and that each of them was presented with a
golden cup to drink his wine in. Alexander entertained them in all
other respects with the greatest magnificence, and even paid all the
debts of his guests, so that the whole expense amounted to nine
thousand eight hundred and seventy talents. On this occasion,
Antigenes the one-eyed got his name inscribed on the roll as a debtor,
and produced a man who said that he was his creditor. He received the
amount of his alleged debt, but his deceit was afterwards discovered
by Alexander, who was much enraged, banished him from his court, and
took away his command. This Antigenes was a very distinguished
soldier. When Philip, was besieging Perinthus, Antigenes, who was then
very young, was struck in the eye with a dart, and would not allow his
friends to pull it out, nor leave the fight, before he had driven back
the enemy into the city. He now was terribly cast down at his
disgrace, and made no secret of his intention of making away with
himself. The king, fearing that he would carry out his threat,
pardoned him, and permitted him to keep the money.

LXXI. Alexander was much pleased with the appearance of the three
thousand youths whom he had left to be trained in the Greek manner,
who had now grown into strong and handsome men, and showed great skill
and activity in the performance of military exercises; but the
Macedonians were very discontented, and feared that their king would
now have less need for them. When Alexander sent those of them who
were sick or maimed back to the sea coast, they said that it was
disgraceful treatment that he should send these poor men home to their
country and their parents in disgrace, and in worse case than when
they set out, after he had had all the benefit of their services. They
bade him send them all home, and regard them all as unserviceable,
since he had such a fine troop of young gallants at his disposal to go
and conquer the world with. Alexander was much vexed at this. He
savagely reproached the soldiers, dismissed all his guards, and
replaced them with Persians, whom he appointed as his body-guards and
chamberlains. When the Macedonians saw him attended by these men, and
found themselves shut out from his presence, they were greatly
humbled, and after discussing the matter together they became nearly
mad with rage and jealousy. At last they agreed to go to his tent
without their arms, dressed only in their tunics, and there with
weeping and lamentation offered themselves to him and bade him deal
with them as with ungrateful and wicked men. Alexander, although he
was now inclined to leniency, refused to receive them, but they would
not go away, and remained for two days and nights at the door of his
tent lamenting and calling him their sovereign. On the third day he
came out, and when he saw them in such a pitiable state of abasement,
he wept for some time. He then gently blamed them for their conduct,
and spoke kindly to them. He gave splendid presents to all the
invalids, and dismissed them, writing at the same time to Antipater
with orders, that in every public spectacle these men should sit in
the best places in the theatre or the circus with garlands on their
heads. The orphan children of those who had fallen he took into his
own service.

LXXII. After Alexander was come to the city of Ekbatana in Media, and
had despatched the most weighty part of his business there, he gave
himself up entirely to devising magnificent spectacles and
entertainments, with the aid of three thousand workmen, whom he had
sent for from Greece. During this time, Hephæstion fell sick of a
fever, and being a young man, and accustomed to a soldier's life, did
not put himself upon a strict diet and remain quiet as he ought to
have done. As soon as Glaukus, his physician, left him to go to the
theatre, he ate a boiled fowl for his breakfast, and drank a large jar
of cooled wine. Upon this he was immediately taken worse, and very
shortly afterwards died.

Alexander's grief for him exceeded all reasonable measure. He ordered
the manes of all the horses and mules to be cut off in sign of
mourning, he struck off the battlements of all the neighbouring
cities, crucified the unhappy physician, and would not permit the
flute or any other musical instrument to be played throughout his
camp, until a response came from the oracle of Ammon bidding him
honour Hephæstion and offer sacrifice to him as to a hero.[432] To
assuage his grief he took to war, and found consolation in fighting
and man-hunting. He conquered the tribe called Kossæi, and slew their
entire male population, which passed for an acceptable offering to the
manes of Hephæstion. He now determined to spend ten thousand
talents[433] on the funeral and tomb of Hephæstion; and as he wished
to exceed the cost by the ingenuity and brilliancy of invention shown
in this spectacle, he chose Stasikrates out of all his mechanicians to
arrange it, as he was thought to be able both to devise with grandeur
and to execute with skill.

He on one occasion before this, when conversing with Alexander, told
him that of all mountains in the world Mount Athos in Thrace was that
which could most easily be carved into the figure of a man; and that,
if Alexander would give him the order, he would form Athos into the
most magnificent and durable monument of him that the world had ever
seen, as he would represent him as holding in his left hand the city
of Myriandrus, and with his right pouring, as a libation, a copious
river into the sea. Alexander would not, indeed, adopt this
suggestion, but was fond of discussing much more wonderful and costly
designs than this with his engineers.

LXXIII. Just as Alexander was on the point of starting for Babylon,
Nearchus, who had returned with his fleet up the Euphrates, met him,
and informed him that some Chaldæans had warned Alexander to avoid
Babylon. He took no heed of this warning, but went his way. When he
drew near the walls he saw many crows flying about and pecking at one
another, some of whom fell to the ground close beside him. After this,
as he heard that Apollodorus, the governor of Babylon, had sacrificed
to the gods to know what would happen to Alexander, he sent for
Pythagoras, the soothsayer, who had conducted the sacrifice, to know
if this were true. The soothsayer admitted that it was, on which
Alexander inquired what signs he had observed in the sacrifice.
Pythagoras answered that the victim's liver wanted one lobe. "Indeed!"
exclaimed Alexander, "that is a terrible omen." He did Pythagoras no
hurt, but regretted that he had not listened to the warning of
Nearchus, and spent most of his time in his camp outside the walls of
Babylon, or in boats on the river Euphrates. Many unfavourable omens
now depressed his spirit. A tame ass attacked and kicked to death the
finest and largest lion that he kept; and one day, as he stripped to
play at tennis, the young man with whom he played, when it was time to
dress again, saw a man sitting on the king's throne, wearing his
diadem and royal robe. For a long time this man refused to speak, but
at length said that he was a citizen of Messene, named Dionysius, who
had been brought to Babylon and imprisoned on some charge or other,
and that now the god Serapis had appeared to him, loosed his chains,
and had brought him thither, where he had bidden him to put on the
king's diadem and robe, seat himself on his throne, and remain silent.

LXXIV. When Alexander heard this, he caused the man to be put to
death, according to the advice of his soothsayers; but he himself was
much cast down, and feared that the gods had forsaken him: he also
grew suspicious of his friends. Above all he feared Antipater and his
sons, one of whom, Iolas, was his chief cup-bearer, while the other,
Kassander, had but recently arrived from Greece, and as he had been
trained in the Greek fashion, and had never seen any Oriental customs
before, he burst into a loud, insolent laugh, when he saw some of the
natives doing homage to Alexander. Alexander was very angry, and
seizing him by the hair with both hands, beat his head against the
wall. Another time he stopped Kassander, when he was about to say
something to some men who were accusing his father, Antipater. "Do you
imagine" said he, "that these men would have journeyed so far merely
in order to accuse a man falsely, if they had not been wronged by
him?" When Kassander answered, that it looked very like a false
accusation for a man to journey far from the place where his proofs
lay, Alexander said with a laugh, "This is how Aristotle teaches his
disciples to argue on either side of the question; but if any of you
be proved to have wronged these men ever so little, you shall smart
for it." It is related that after this, terror of Alexander became so
rooted in the mind of Kassander, that many years afterwards, when
Kassander was king of Macedonia, and lord of all Greece, he was
walking about in Delphi looking at the statues, and that when he saw
that of Alexander he was seized with a violent shuddering; his hair
stood upright on his head, and his body quaked with fear, so that it
was long before he regained his composure.

LXXV. After Alexander had once lost his confidence and become
suspicious and easily alarmed, there was no circumstance so trivial
that he did not make an omen of it, and the palace was full of
sacrifices, lustrations, and soothsayers. So terrible a thing is
disbelief in the gods and contempt for them on the one hand, while
superstition and excessive reverence for them presses on men's guilty
consciences like a torrent of water[434] poured upon them. Thus was
Alexander's mind filled with base and cowardly alarms. However when
the oracular responses of the gods about Hephæstion were reported to
him, he laid aside his grief somewhat, and again indulged in feasts
and drinking bouts. He entertained Nearchus and his friends
magnificently, after which he took a bath, and then, just as he was
going to sleep, Medius invited him to a revel at his house. He drank
there the whole of the following day, when he began to feel feverish:
though he did not drink up the cup of Herakles at a draught, or
suddenly feel a pain as of a spear piercing his body, as some
historians have thought it necessary to write, in order to give a
dramatic fitness and dignity to the end of so important a personage.
Aristobulus tells us that he became delirious through fever, and drank
wine to quench his thirst, after which he became raving mad, and died
on the thirtieth day of the month Daisius.

LXXVI. In his own diary his last illness is described thus: "On the
eighteenth day of Daisius he slept in the bath-room, because he was
feverish. On the following day after bathing he came into his chamber
and spent the day playing at dice with Medius. After this he bathed
late in the evening, offered sacrifice to the gods, dined, and
suffered from fever during the night. On the twentieth he bathed and
sacrificed as usual, and while reclining in his bath-room he conversed
with Nearchus and his friends, listening to their account of their
voyage, and of the Great Ocean. On the twenty-first he did the same,
but his fever grew much worse, so that he suffered much during the
night, and next day was very ill. On rising from his bed he lay beside
the great plunge-bath, and conversed with his generals about certain
posts which were vacant in his army, bidding them choose suitable
persons to fill them. On the twenty-fourth, although very ill, he rose
and offered sacrifice; and he ordered his chief officers to remain
near him, and the commanders of brigades and regiments to pass the
night at his gate. On the twenty-fifth he was carried over the river
to the other palace, and slept a little, but the fever did not leave
him. When his generals came to see him he was speechless, and remained
so during the twenty-fifth, so that the Macedonians thought that he
was dead. They clamoured at his palace gates, and threatened the
attendants until they forced their way in. When the gates were thrown
open they all filed past his bed one by one, dressed only in their
tunics. On this day Python and Seleukus, who had been to the temple of
Serapis, enquired whether they should bring Alexander thither. The god
answered that they must leave him alone. The eight and twentieth day
of the month, towards evening, Alexander died."

LXXVII. Most of the above is copied, word for word, from Alexander's
household diary. No one had any suspicion of poison at the time; but
it is said that six years after there appeared clear proof that he was
poisoned, and that Olympias put many men to death, and caused the
ashes of Iolas, who had died in the mean time, to be cast to the
winds, as though he had administered the poison to Alexander.

Some writers say that Antipater was advised by Aristotle to poison
Alexander, and inform us that one Hagnothemis declared that he had
been told as much by Antipater; and that the poison was as cold as
ice, and was gathered like dew, from a certain rock near the city of
Nonakris, and preserved in the hoof of an ass: for no other vessel
could contain it, because it is so exceedingly cold and piercing. Most
historians, however, think that the whole story of Alexander's being
poisoned was a fiction; and this view is strongly supported by the
fact, that as Alexander's generals began to fight one another
immediately after his death, his body lay for many days unheeded, in
hot and close rooms, and yet showed no signs of decay, but remained
sweet and fresh. Roxana, who was pregnant, was regarded with great
respect by the Macedonians, and being jealous of Statira, she sent her
a forged letter, purporting to come from Alexander and asking her to
come to him. When Statira came, Roxana killed both her and her sister,
cast their bodies down a well, and filled up the well with earth. Her
accomplice in this crime was Perdikkas, who on the death of Alexander
at once became a very powerful man. He sheltered his authority under
the name of Arrhidæus, who became the nominal, while Perdikkas was the
virtual king of Macedonia. This Arrhidæus was the son of Philip by a
low and disreputable woman named Philinna, and was half-witted in
consequence of some bodily disorder with which he was afflicted. This
disease was not congenital nor produced by natural causes, for he had
been a fine boy and showed considerable ability, but Olympias
endeavoured to poison him, and destroyed his intellect by her drugs.


[Footnote 394: On the subject of serpent worship, see in Smith's
'Dictionary of the Bible,' art.: 'Serpent,' and 'Brazen Serpent.']

[Footnote 395: The Greek month Hekatombæon answers to the last half of
our July and the first half of August.]

[Footnote 396: Cf. Horace, _Carm._ iii. 22.]

[Footnote 397: Reciters of epic poems, the cantos of which were called

[Footnote 398: The same indifference to athletic sports, as practised
in Greece, is mentioned in the Life of Philopœmen. The pankratium is
sometimes called the pentathlum, and consisted of five contests, the
foot-race, leaping, throwing the quoit, hurling the javelin, and
wrestling. No one received the prize unless he was winner in all. In
earlier times boxing was part of the pentathlum, but hurling the
javelin was afterwards substituted for it.]

[Footnote 399: In Greek, this word is properly applied to the slave
whose duty it was to attend a boy to and from school, and generally to
keep him out of mischief. He was not supposed to teach him.]

[Footnote 400: The literal meaning of this word is "bull's head." It
is conjectured that this refers to the mark with which the horse was
branded, not to his appearance.]

[Footnote 401: I believe that the seal here mentioned was Philip's
own, and in no sense the "great seal of the kingdom," although Strabo
speaks of the public seal of a state.]

[Footnote 402: A tribe in the eastern part of Macedonia.]

[Footnote 403: Near Chæronea.]

[Footnote 404: It must be remembered that the ancients, although they
possessed chairs, always ate and drank reclining upon couches.]

[Footnote 405: The Karians, ever since the siege of Troy, were
regarded by the Greeks with the greatest contempt Cf. Il. ix. 378.]

[Footnote 406: Bacchus. Compare the Bacchæ of Euripides, passim.]

[Footnote 407: For a description of the Macedonian phalanx, see life
of Titus Flaminius, ch. viii., note.]

[Footnote 408: This inscription was no doubt written over such spoils
as were placed in the Greek temples. Compare Virgil's "Æneas hæc de
Danais victoribus arma."]

[Footnote 409: When the wind blew from the south, this road was
covered by such a depth of water as to be impracticable: for some time
before he reached the spot the wind had blown strong from the
south--but as he came near, the special providence of the gods (so he
and his friends conceived it) brought on a change of wind to the
north, so that the sea receded and left an available passage, though
his soldiers had the water up to their waists. Grote's History of
Greece, Part II. ch. xcii.]

[Footnote 410: See Smith's 'Biographical Dictionary' s.v.]

[Footnote 411: This dye was probably made from the murex or purple
fish, caught in the Hermionic gulf, in Argolis, which produced a dye
only second to that of Tyre.]

[Footnote 412: "No certainty is attainable about the ancient geography
of these regions. Mr. Long's Map of Ancient Persia shows how little
can be made out." (Grote's 'History of Greece,' part ii. chap. cxiii.,

[Footnote 413: Lykus in Greek signifies a wolf.]

[Footnote 414: In Persepolis, the capital of the district called

[Footnote 415: The ancients, whose bodies were anointed with oil or
unguents, used dust when wrestling, to enable them to hold one

[Footnote 416: The Sea of Azof.]

[Footnote 417: Antipater had been left by Alexander as his viceroy in

[Footnote 418: The word which I have translated 'striped' is mentioned
by Xenophon in the _Cyropædia_ as one of the ensigns of royalty
assumed by Cyrus.]

[Footnote 419: Probably Cabul or Ghuznee. The whole geography of
Alexander's Asiatic campaigns will be found most exhaustively
discussed in Grote's 'History of Greece,' part ii. ch. xcii., s. 99.]

[Footnote 420: The same name occurs in the Life of Sulla, c. 15, and
Life of Lucullus, c. 26.]

[Footnote 421: The river Jhelum in the Punjaub.]

[Footnote 422: A cubit is the space from the point of the elbow to
that of the little finger: a span is the space one can stretch over
with the thumb and the little finger.]

[Footnote 423: As distinguished from the Mediterranean. The ancients
gave the name of ocean to the sea by which they believed that their
world was surrounded.]

[Footnote 424: [Greek: daktylos] δάκτυλος, the shortest Greek measure,
a finger's breadth, about 7/20 of an inch. The modern Greek seamen
measure the distance of the sun from the horizon by fingers' breadths.
Newton's 'Halicarnassus.' (Liddell & Scott, s.v.)]

[Footnote 425: So called from their habit of going entirely naked. One
of them is said by Arrian to have said to Alexander. "You are a man
like all of us, Alexander--except that you abandon your home like a
meddlesome destroyer, to invade the most distant regions; enduring
hardships yourself, and inflicting hardships on others." (Arrian, vii,
1, 8.)]

[Footnote 426: To recompense his soldiers for their recent distress,
the king conducted them for seven days in drunken bacchanalian
procession through Karmania, himself and all his friends taking part
in the revelry; an imitation of the jovial festivity and triumph with
which the god Dionysus had marched back from the conquest of India.
(Grote's 'History of Greece,' part ii. ch. xciv.)]

[Footnote 427: The straits of Gibraltar.]

[Footnote 428: Her daughter, Alexander's sister.]

[Footnote 429: The district known to the ancients as Persis or Persia
proper, corresponds roughly to the modern province of Fars. Its
capital city was Persepolis, near the modern city of Schiraz.]

[Footnote 430: The capital of Macedonia, Alexander's native city.]

[Footnote 431: [Greek: chous] χοῦς a liquid measure containing 12
[Greek: kotulai] κοτύλαι of 5.46 pints apiece.]

[Footnote 432: The Greek word hero means a semi-divine personage, who
was worshipped, though with less elaborate ritual than a god.]

[Footnote 433: £2,300,000. Grote, following Diodorus, raises the total
even higher, to twelve thousand talents, or £2,760,000. "History of
Greece," part ii. ch. xciv.]

[Footnote 434: The Greek text here is corrupt. I have endeavoured to
give what appears to have been Plutarch's meaning.]


I.[435] When Sulla got possession of the supreme power, he confiscated
the marriage portion of Cornelia[436] the daughter of Cinna[437] who
had once enjoyed the supremacy in Rome, because he could not either by
promises or threats induce Cæsar to part with her. The cause of the
enmity between Cæsar and Sulla was Cæsar's relationship to Marius; for
the elder Marius was the husband of Julia the sister of Cæsar's
father, and Julia was the mother of the younger Marius, who was
consequently Cæsar's cousin. Cæsar was not content with being let
alone by Sulla, who was at first fully occupied with the
proscriptions and other matters, but he presented himself to the
people as a candidate for a priesthood,[438] though he had hardly
arrived at man's estate. But Sulla by his opposition contrived to
exclude him from this office, and even thought of putting him to
death; and when some observed that there was no reason in putting to
death such a youth, Sulla observed, that they had no sense if they did
not see many Marii in this boy. These words were conveyed to Cæsar,
who thereupon concealed himself by wandering about for some time in
the Sabine country. On one occasion when he was changing his place of
abode on account of sickness, he fell in by night with the soldiers of
Sulla who were scouring those parts and seizing on those who were
concealed. But Cæsar got away by giving Cornelius,[439] who was in
command of the soldiers, two talents, and going straightway down to
the coast he took ship and sailed to Bithynia to King Nicomedes,[440]
with whom he stayed no long time. On his voyage from Bithynia, he was
captured near the island Pharmacusa[441] by pirates,[442] who at that
time were in possession of the seas with a powerful force and numerous

II. The pirates asked Cæsar twenty talents for his ransom, on which he
laughed at them for not knowing who their prize was, and he promised
to give them fifty talents. While he dispatched those about him to
various cities to raise the money, he was left with one friend and
two attendants among these Cilician pirates, who were notorious for
their cruelty, yet he treated them with such contempt that whenever he
was lying down to rest, he would send to them and order them to be
quiet. He spent eight and thirty days among them, not so much like a
prisoner as a prince surrounded by his guards, and he joined in their
sports and exercises with perfect unconcern. He also wrote poems and
some speeches which he read to them, and those who did not approve of
his compositions he would call to their faces illiterate fellows and
barbarians, and he would often tell them with a laugh that he would
hang them all. The pirates were pleased with his manners, and
attributed this freedom of speech to simplicity and a mirthful
disposition. As soon as the ransom came from Miletus and Cæsar had
paid it and was set at liberty, he manned some vessels in the port of
Miletus and went after the pirates, whom he found still on the island,
and he secured most of them. All their property he made his booty; but
the pirates, he lodged in prison at Pergamum, and then went to
Junius,[443] who, as governor of the provinces of Asia, was the proper
person to punish the captives. But as the governor was casting a
longing eye on the booty, which was valuable, and said he would take
time to consider about the captives, Cæsar without more ado, left him
and going straight to Pergamum took all the pirates out of prison and
crucified them, as he had often told them he would do in the island
when they thought he was merely jesting.

III. Sulla's power was now declining, and Cæsar's friends in Rome
recommended him to return. However, he first made a voyage to Rhodus
in order to have the instruction of Apollonius the son of Molon,[444]
of whom Cicero also was a hearer. This Apollonius was a distinguished
rhetorician, and had the reputation of being a man of a good
disposition. Cæsar is said to have had a great talent for the
composition of discourses on political matters, and to have cultivated
it most diligently, so as to obtain beyond dispute the second rank;
his ambition to be first in power and arms, made him from want of
leisure give up the first rank, to which his natural talents invited
him, and consequently his attention to military matters and political
affairs by which he got the supreme power, did not allow him to attain
perfection in oratory. Accordingly at a later period, in his reply to
Cicero about Cato,[445] he deprecates all comparison between the
composition of a soldier and the eloquence of an accomplished orator
who had plenty of leisure to prosecute his studies.

IV. On his return to Rome he impeached[446] Dolabella[447] for
maladministration in his province, and many of the cities of Greece
gave evidence in support of the charge. Dolabella, indeed, was
acquitted; but to make some return to the Greeks for their zeal in his
behalf, Cæsar assisted them in their prosecution of Publius
Antonius[448] for corruption before Marcus Lucullus, the governor of
Macedonia; and his aid was so effectual that Antonius appealed to the
tribunes, alleging that he had not a fair trial in Greece with the
Greeks for his accusers. At Rome Cæsar got a brilliant popularity by
aiding at trials with his eloquence; and he gained also much good will
by his agreeable mode of saluting people and his pleasant manners, for
he was more attentive to please than persons usually are at that age.
He was also gradually acquiring political influence by the splendour
of his entertainments and his table and of his general mode of living.
At first those who envied him, thinking that when his resources
failed his influence would soon go, did not concern themselves about
his flourishing popularity: but at last when his political power had
acquired strength and had become difficult to overthrow and was
manifestly tending to bring about a complete revolution, they
perceived that no beginnings should be considered too small to be
capable of quickly becoming great by uninterrupted endurance and
having no obstacle to their growth by reason of being despised.
Cicero, who is considered to have been the first to suspect and to
fear the smiling surface[449] of Cæsar's policy, as a man would the
smiling smoothness of a sea, and who observed the bold and determined
character which was concealed under a friendly and joyous exterior,
said that in all his designs and public measures he perceived a
tyrannical purpose; "but on the other hand," said he, "when I look at
his hair, which is arranged with so much care, and see him scratching
his head with one finger,[450] I cannot think that such a wicked
purpose will ever enter into this man's mind as the overthrow of the
Roman State." This, however, belongs to a later period.

V. He received the first proof of the good will of the people towards
him when he was a competitor against Caius Popilius for a military
tribuneship,[451] and was proclaimed before him. He received a second
and more conspicuous evidence of popular favour on the occasion of the
death of Julia[452] the wife of Marius, when Cæsar, who was her
nephew, pronounced over her a splendid funeral oration in the Forum,
and at the funeral ventured to exhibit the images[453] of Marius,
which were then seen for the first time since the administration of
Sulla, for Marius and his son had been adjudged enemies. Some voices
were raised against Cæsar on account of this display, but the people
responded by loud shouts, and received him with clapping of hands, and
admiration, that he was bringing back as from the regions of Hades,
after so long an interval, the glories of Marius to the city. Now it
was an ancient Roman usage to pronounce funeral orations[454] over
elderly women, but it was not customary to do it in the case of young
women, and Cæsar set the first example by pronouncing a funeral
oration over his deceased wife, which brought him some popularity and
won the many by sympathy to consider him a man of a kind disposition
and full of feeling. After the funeral of his wife he went to Iberia
as quæstor to the Prætor Vetus,[455] for whom he always showed great
respect, and whose son he made his own quæstor when he filled the
office of Prætor. After his quæstorship he married for his third wife
Pompeia[456] he had by his wife Cornelia a daughter, who afterwards
married Pompeius Magnus. Owing to his profuse expenditure (and indeed
men generally supposed that he was buying at a great cost a
short-lived popularity, though in fact he was purchasing things of the
highest value at a low price) it is said that before he attained any
public office he was in debt to the amount of thirteen hundred
talents. Upon being appointed curator of the Appian Road,[457] he laid
out upon it a large sum of his own; and during his ædileship[458] he
exhibited three hundred and twenty pair of gladiators, and by his
liberality and expenditure on the theatrical exhibitions, the
processions, and the public entertainments, he completely drowned all
previous displays, and put the people in such a humour, that every man
was seeking for new offices and new honours to requite him with.

VI. There were at this time two parties in the State, that of Sulla,
which was all-powerful, and that of Marius, which was cowed and
divided and very feeble. It was Cæsar's object to strengthen and gain
over the party of Marius, and accordingly, when the ambitious
splendour of his ædileship was at its height, he had images of Marius
secretly made, and triumphal Victories, which he took by night and set
up on the Capitol. At daybreak the people seeing the images glittering
with gold, and exquisitely laboured by art (and there were
inscriptions also which declared the Cimbrian victories of Marius),
were in admiration at the boldness of him who had placed them there,
for it was no secret who it was, and the report quickly circulating
through the city, brought everybody to the spot to see. Some exclaimed
that Cæsar had a design to make himself tyrant, which appeared by his
reviving those testimonials of honour which had been buried in the
earth by laws and decrees of the senate, and that it was done to try
if the people, who were already tampered with, were tamed to his
purpose by his splendid exhibitions, and would allow him to venture on
such tricks and innovations. But the partisans of Marius, encouraging
one another, soon collected in surprising numbers, and filled the
Capitol with their noise. Many also shed tears of joy at seeing the
likeness of Marius, and Cæsar was highly extolled as the only man
worthy to be a kinsman of Marius. The senate being assembled about
these matters, Catulus Lutatius, who had at that time the greatest
name of any man in Rome, got up, and charging Cæsar, uttered that
memorable expression: "Cæsar, no longer are you taking the state by
underground approaches, but by storming engines." Cæsar spoke in reply
to this charge, and satisfied the senate, on which his admirers were
still more elated, and urged him not to abate of his pretensions for
any one: with the favour of the people, they said, he would soon get
the better of all, and be the first man in the State.

VII. About this time Metellus,[459] the Pontifex Maximus, died, and
though Isauricus and Catulus were candidates for the priesthood, which
was a great object of ambition, and were men of the highest rank and
greatest influence in the senate, Cæsar would not give way to them,
but he presented himself to the people as a competitor. The favour of
the people appearing equally divided, Catulus, as the more
distinguished candidate, being more afraid of the uncertainty of the
event, sent and offered Cæsar a large sum of money if he would retire
from his canvass; but Cæsar replied that he would stand it out even if
he had to borrow still more. On the day of the election, his mother,
with tears, accompanied him to the door, when Cæsar embracing her,
said, "Mother, to-day you shall see your son either Pontifex Maximus,
or an exile." After the voting was over, which was conducted with
great spirit, Cæsar prevailed, a circumstance which alarmed the senate
and the nobles, who feared that he would lead on the people to the
boldest measures. Accordingly, Piso and Catulus blamed Cicero for
having spared Cæsar, who, in the matter of Catiline's[460] conspiracy,
had given him a handle. Now Catiline designed not only to alter the
form of government, but to subvert the whole Commonwealth, and throw
all into confusion, but he was ejected from the city on being
convicted of some minor charges, and before the extent of his designs
was discovered. He left behind him in the city Lentulus and Cethegus,
to carry his plans into execution. It is uncertain if Cæsar secretly
lent them any countenance and aid, but when they were completely
convicted in the senate, and Cicero the consul put it to each senator
to give his opinion on their punishment, all who spoke declared for
death till it came to Cæsar's turn to speak. Cæsar rose and delivered
a studied oration, to the effect that it was not consistent with the
constitution, nor was it just to put to death without a trial men
distinguished for their high character and their family, unless there
was the most urgent necessity; and he added that, if they were
imprisoned in the Italian cities which Cicero himself might choose,
until the war against Catiline was brought to an end, the senate might
have time to deliberate on the case of each prisoner when peace was

VIII. This proposal appeared so humane, and was supported by so
powerful a speech, that not only those who rose after Cæsar sided
with, him, but many of those who had already spoken changed their
opinions and went over to that of Cæsar, till it came to the turn of
Cato and Catulus to speak. After they had made a vigorous opposition,
and Cato in his speech had also urged suspicious matter against Cæsar
and strongly argued against him, the conspirators were handed over to
the executioner, and as Cæsar was leaving the Senate many of the young
men who then acted as a guard to Cicero, crowded together and
threatened Cæsar with their naked swords.[461] But Curio[462] is said
to have thrown his toga round Cæsar, and to have carried him off; and
Cicero also, when the young men looked to him, is said to have checked
them by a motion, either through fear of the people or because he
thought that the death of Cæsar would be most unjust and a violation
of law. If this is true, I cannot conceive why Cicero said nothing
about it in the book on his Consulship;[463] but Cicero was blamed
afterwards for not having taken advantage of so favourable an
opportunity to get rid of Cæsar, and for having feared the people, who
were extravagantly attached to Cæsar. And indeed a few days after,
when Cæsar had gone to the Senate and defended himself in a speech
against the imputations that had been cast on him, and his speech was
received with loud marks of disapprobation and the sitting of the
Senate was lasting longer than usual, the people came with loud cries
and surrounded the Senate-house calling for Cæsar and bidding the
Senate let him go. Accordingly, Cato apprehending danger mainly from
some movement of the needy part of the people, who were like a
firebrand among the rest of the citizens, as they had all their hopes
in Cæsar, prevailed on the Senate to give them a monthly allowance of
corn, which produced an addition to the rest of the expenditure of
seven millions[464] five hundred thousands. However, the immediate
alarm was manifestly quenched by this measure, which snapped off the
best part of Cæsar's influence and scattered it, at a time when he was
going to enter on his office of Prætor which made him more

IX. No tumults occurred in Cæsar's Prætorship,[465] but a disagreeable
incident happened in his family. Publius Clodius,[466] a man of
Patrician rank, was distinguished both by wealth and eloquence, but in
arrogance and impudence he was not inferior to the most notorious
scoundrels in Rome. Clodius was in love with Pompeia, Cæsar's wife,
and Pompeia was in no way averse to him. But a strict watch was kept
over the woman's apartment, and Aurelia, Cæsar's mother, who was a
prudent woman, by always observing Pompeia, made it difficult and
hazardous for the lovers to have an interview. Now the Romans have a
goddess whom they call Bona, as the Greeks have a Gynæceia. The
Phrygians, who claim this goddess, say she was the mother of King
Midas; the Romans say she was a Dryad and the wife of Faunus; but the
Greeks say she is one of the mothers of Dionysus, whose name must not
be uttered; and this is the reason why they cover the tents with
vine-leaves during the celebration of her festival, and a sacred
serpent sits by the goddess according to the mythus. No man is allowed
to approach the festival, nor to be in the house during the
celebration of the rites; but the women by themselves are said to
perform many rites similar to the Orphic in the celebration.
Accordingly when the season of the festival is come, the husband, if
he be consul or prætor, leaves the house and every male also quits it;
and the wife taking possession of the house makes all arrangements,
and the chief ceremonies are celebrated by night, the evening festival
being accompanied with mirth and much music.

X. While Pompeia[467] was now celebrating this festival, Clodius, who
was not yet bearded, and for this reason thought that he should not be
discovered, assumed the dress and equipment of a female lute-player
and went to the house looking just like a young woman. Finding the
door open, he was safely let in by a female slave who was in the
secret, and who forthwith ran off to tell Pompeia. As there was some
delay and Clodius was too impatient to wait where the woman had left
him, but was rambling about the house, which was large, and trying to
avoid the lights, Aurelia's waiting-woman, as was natural for one
woman with another, challenged him to a little mirthful sport, and as
he declined the invitations, she pulled him forward and asked who he
was and where he came from. Clodius replied that he was waiting for
Abra the maid of Pompeia, for that was the woman's name, but his voice
betrayed him, and the waiting-woman ran with a loud cry to the lights
and the rest of the company, calling out that she had discovered a
man. All the women were in the greatest alarm, and Aurelia stopped the
celebration of the rites and covered up the sacred things: she also
ordered the doors to be closed and went about the house with the
lights to look for Clodius. He was discovered lurking in the chamber
of the girl who had let him in, and on being recognised by the women
was turned out of doors. The women went straightway, though it was
night, to their husbands to tell them what had happened; and as soon
as it was day, the talk went through Rome of the desecration of the
sacred rites by Clodius, and how he ought to be punished for his
behaviour, not only to the persons whom he had insulted, but to the
city and the gods. Accordingly one of the tribunes instituted a
prosecution against Clodius for an offence against religion, and the
most powerful of the senators combined against him, charging him,
among other abominations, with adultery with his sister, who was the
wife of Lucullus. The people set themselves in opposition to their
exertions and supported Clodius, and were of great service to him
with the judices, who were terror-struck and afraid of the people.
Cæsar immediately divorced Pompeia, and when he was summoned as a
witness on the trial, he said he knew nothing about the matters that
Clodius was charged with. This answer appearing strange, the accuser
asked him, "Why have you put away your wife?" to which Cæsar replied,
"Because I considered that my wife ought not even to be suspected."
Some say that this was the real expression of Cæsar's opinion, but
others affirm that it was done to please the people who were bent on
saving Clodius. However this may be, Clodius was acquitted, for the
majority of the judices gave in their votes[468] written confusedly,
that they might run no risk from the populace by convicting Clodius
nor lose the good opinion of the better sort by acquitting him.

XI. On the expiration of his Prætorship, Cæsar received Iberia[469]
for his province, but as he had a difficulty about arranging matters
with his creditors, who put obstructions in the way of his leaving
Rome, and were clamorous, he applied to Crassus, then the richest man
in Rome, who stood in need of the vigour and impetuosity of Cæsar to
support him in his political hostility to Pompeius. Crassus undertook
to satisfy the most importunate and unrelenting of the creditors, and
having become security for Cæsar to the amount of eight hundred and
thirty talents, thus enabled him to set out for his province. There is
a story that as Cæsar was crossing the Alps, he passed by a small
barbarian town which had very few inhabitants and was a miserable
place, on which his companions jocosely observed, "They did not
suppose there were any contests for honors in such a place as that,
and struggles for the first rank and mutual jealousy of the chief
persons:" on which Cæsar earnestly remarked, "I would rather be the
first man here than the second at Rome." Again in Spain, when he had
some leisure and was reading the history of Alexander,[470] he was for
a long time in deep thought, and at last burst into tears; and on his
friends asking the reason of this, he said, "Don't you think it is a
matter for sorrow, that Alexander was king of so many nations at such
an early age, and I have as yet done nothing of note?"

XII. However, as soon as he entered Iberia, he commenced active
operations and in a few days raised ten cohorts in addition to the
twenty which were already there, and with this force marching against
the Calaici[471] and Lusitani he defeated them, and advanced to the
shores of the external sea, subduing the nations which hitherto had
paid no obedience to Rome. After his military success, he was equally
fortunate in settling the civil administration by establishing
friendly relations among the different states, and particularly by
healing the differences between debtors and creditors;[472] for which
purpose he determined that the creditor should annually take
two-thirds of the debtor's income, and that the owner should take the
other third, which arrangement was to continue till the debt was paid.
By these measures he gained a good reputation, and he retired from the
province with the acquisition of a large fortune, having enriched his
soldiers also by his campaigns and been saluted by them Imperator.

XIII. As it was the law at Rome that those who were soliciting a
triumph should stay outside the city, and that those who were
candidates for the consulship should be present in the city, Cæsar
finding himself in this difficulty, and having reached Rome just at
the time of the consular elections, sent to the senate to request
permission to offer himself to the consulship in his absence through
the intervention of his friends. Cato at first urged the law in
opposition to Cæsar's request, but seeing that many of the senators
had been gained over by Cæsar, he attempted to elude the question by
taking advantage of time and wasting the day in talking, till at last
Cæsar determined to give up the triumph and to secure the consulship.
As soon as he entered the city, he adopted a policy which deceived
everybody except Cato; and this was the bringing about of a
reconciliation between Pompeius and Crassus, the two most powerful men
in Rone, whom Cæsar reconciled from their differences, and centering
in himself the united strength of the two by an act that had a
friendly appearance, changed the form of government without its being
observed. For it was not, as most people suppose, the enmity of Cæsar
and Pompeius which produced the civil wars, but their friendship
rather, inasmuch as they first combined to depress the nobility and
then quarrelled with one another. Cato, who often predicted what would
happen, at the time only got by it the character of being a morose,
meddling fellow, though afterwards he was considered to be a wise, but
not a fortunate adviser.

XIV. Cæsar,[473] however, supported on both sides by the friendship of
Crassus and Pompeius, was raised to the consulship and proclaimed
triumphantly with Calpurnius Bibulus for his colleague. Immediately
upon entering on his office he proposed enactments more suitable to
the most turbulent tribune than a consul, for in order to please the
populace he introduced measures for certain allotments and divisions
of land.[474] But he met with opposition in the Senate from the good
and honourable among them, and as he had long been looking for a
pretext, he exclaimed with solemn adjurations, that he was driven
against his will to court the favour of the people by the arrogance
and obstinacy of the Senate, and accordingly he hurried to the popular
assembly and placing Crassus on one side of him and Pompeius on the
other, he asked them if they approved of his legislative measures.
Upon their expressing their approbation, he entreated them to give him
their aid against those who threatened to oppose him with their
swords. Pompeius and Crassus promised their assistance, and Pompeius
added, that he would oppose swords with sword and shield. The nobility
were annoyed at hearing such mad, inconsiderate words drop from
Pompeius, which were unbecoming his own character and the respect that
he owed to the Senate; but the people were delighted. Cæsar, whose
secret design it was to secure the influence of Pompeius still more,
gave him to wife his daughter Julia,[475] who was already betrothed to
Servilius Cæpio; and he promised Cæpio that he should have the
daughter of Pompeius, though she also was not disengaged, being
betrothed to Faustus, the son of Sulla. Shortly after Cæsar married
Calpurnia, the daughter of Piso, and got Piso named consul for the
next year, though Cato in this matter also strongly protested and
exclaimed that it was an intolerable thing for the chief power to be
prostituted by marriage bargains and that they should help one another
by means of women, to provinces and armies and political power.
Bibulus, Cæsar's colleague, found it useless to oppose Cæsar's
measures, and he and Cato several times narrowly escaped with their
lives in the Forum, whereupon Bibulus shut himself up at home for the
remainder of his consulship. Immediately after his marriage Pompeius
filled the Forum with armed men, and supported the people in passing
Cæsar's laws and in giving him for five years Gaul on both sides of
the Alps with the addition of Illyricum and four legions. Upon Cato's
venturing to speak against these measures, Cæsar ordered him to be
carried off to prison, thinking that he would appeal to the tribunes.
But Cato went off without speaking a word; and Cæsar observing that
the nobles were much annoyed at this, and the people also through
respect for Cato's virtue were following him in silence and with
downcast eyes, secretly asked one of the tribunes to release Cato.
Very few of the senators used to accompany Cæsar to the Senate, but
the majority not liking his measures stayed away. Considius,[476] who
was a very old man, observed that the senators did not come because
they were afraid of the arms and the soldiers. "Why don't you then
stay at home for the same reason?" replied Cæsar, to which Considius
rejoined, "My age makes me fearless, for the little of life that
remains for me is not worth much thought." The most scandalous public
measure in Cæsar's consulship was the election as tribune of that[477]
Clodius who had dishonoured Cæsar's wife and violated the mysterious
nocturnal rites. But he was elected in order to ruin Cicero, and Cæsar
did not set out for his province till with the aid of Clodius he had
put down Cicero by his cabals and driven him out of Italy.

XV. Such is said to have been the course of Cæsar's life before his
Gallic campaigns.[478] But the period of his wars which he afterwards
fought and his expedition by which he subdued Gaul, is just like a new
beginning in his career and the commencement of a new course of life
and action, in which he showed himself as a soldier and a general
inferior to none who have gained admiration as leaders and been the
greatest men: for whether we compare Cæsar's exploits with those of
the Fabii, Scipios, and Metelli, or with those of his contemporaries
or immediate predecessors, Sulla and Marius and both the Luculli or
even Pompeius himself, whose fame, high as the heavens, was blossoming
at that time in every kind of military virtue, Cæsar will be found to
surpass them all--his superiority over one appearing in the
difficulties of the country in which he carried on his campaigns, over
another in the extent of country subdued, over a third in the number
and courage of the enemy whom he defeated, over another again in the
savage manners and treacherous character of the nations that he
brought to civility, over a fourth in his clemency and mildness to the
conquered, over another again in his donations and liberality to his
soldiers; and in fine his superiority over all other generals appears
by the numbers of battles that he fought and of enemies that he slew.
For in somewhat less than ten years during which he carried on his
campaign in Gaul he took by storm above eight hundred cities, and
subdued three hundred nations, and fought with three millions of men
at different times, of whom he destroyed one million in battle and
took as many prisoners.

XVI.[479] So great were the good-will and devotion of Cæsar's
soldiers to him, that those who under other generals were in no way
superior to ordinary soldiers, were invincible and irresistible and
ready to meet any danger for Cæsar's glory. An instance of this is
Acilius, who in the sea-fight of Massalia[480] boarded one of the
enemy's ships and had his right hand cut off with a sword, but he
still kept hold of his shield with the left hand and striking at the
faces of the enemy drove all to flight and got possession of the
vessel. Another instance was Cassius Scæva,[481] who in the fight at
Dyrrachium had one eye destroyed by an arrow, his shoulder transfixed
with one javelin and his thigh with another, and on his shield he had
received the blows of one hundred and thirty missiles. In this plight
he called to the enemy as if he designed to surrender himself, and two
of them accordingly approached him, but with his sword he lopped off
one man's shoulder and wounding the other in the face, put him to
flight, and finally he escaped himself with the aid of his friends. In
Britannia on one occasion the natives had attacked the foremost
centurions who had got into a marshy spot full of water, upon which,
in the presence of Cæsar who was viewing the contest, a soldier rushed
into the midst of the enemy, and after performing many conspicuous
acts of valour, rescued the centurions from the barbarians, who took
to flight. The soldier, with difficulty attempting to cross after all
the rest, plunged into the muddy stream, and with great trouble and
the loss of his shield, sometimes swimming, sometimes walking, he got
safe over. While those who were about Cæsar were admiring his conduct
and coming to receive him with congratulations and shouts, the
soldier, with the greatest marks of dejection and tears in his eyes,
fell down at Cæsar's feet and begged pardon for the loss of his
shield. Again, in Libya, Scipio's party having taken one of Cæsar's
ships in which was Granius Petro, who had been appointed quæstor, made
booty of all the rest, but offered to give the quæstor his life; but
he replying that it was the fashion with Cæsar's soldiers to give and
not to accept mercy, killed himself with his own sword.

XVII. This courage and emulation Cæsar cherished and created, in the
first place by distributing rewards and honours without stint, and
thus showing that he did not get wealth from the enemy for his own
enjoyment and pleasure, but that it was treasured up with him as the
common reward of courage, and that he was rich only in proportion as
he rewarded deserving soldiers; and in the next place by readily
undergoing every danger and never shrinking from any toil. Now they
did not so much admire Cæsar's courage, knowing his love of glory; but
his endurance of labour beyond his body's apparent power of sustaining
it, was a matter of astonishment, for he was of a spare habit, and had
a white and soft skin, and was subject to complaints in the head and
to epileptic fits, which, as it is said, first attacked him at
Corduba;[482] notwithstanding all this, he did not make his feeble
health an excuse for indulgence, but he made military service the
means of his cure, by unwearied journeying, frugal diet, and by
constantly keeping in the open air and enduring fatigue, struggling
with his malady and keeping his body proof against its attacks. He
generally slept in chariots or in litters, making even his repose a
kind of action; and in the daytime he used to ride in a vehicle to the
garrisons, cities and camps, with a slave by his side, one of those
who were expert at taking down what was dictated on a journey, and a
single soldier behind him armed with a sword. He used to travel so
quick that on his first journey from Rome he reached the Rhodanus[483]
in eight days. From his boyhood he was a good horseman, for he had
been accustomed to place his hands behind him and, holding them close
together on his back, to put the horse to his full speed. In that
campaign he also practised himself in dictating letters as he was
riding and thus giving employment to two scribes, and as Oppius[484]
says, to more. He is said also to have introduced the practice of
communicating with his friends by letters, as there was no time for
personal interviews on urgent affairs, owing to the amount of business
and the size of the city. This anecdote also is cited as a proof of
his indifference as to diet. On one occasion when he was entertained
at supper by his host Valerius Leo[485] in Mediolanum, asparagus was
served up with myrum poured on it instead of oil, which Cæsar ate
without taking any notice of it, and reproved his friends who were out
of humour on the occasion. "You should be content," he said, "not to
eat what you don't like; but to find fault with your host's
ill-breeding is to be as ill-bred as himself." Once upon a journey he
was compelled by a storm to take shelter in a poor man's hut, which
contained only a single chamber and that hardly large enough for one
person, on which he observed to his friends that the post of honour
must be given to the worthiest and the place of safety to the weakest;
and he bade Oppius lie down while he and the rest slept in the porch.

XVIII. Cæsar's first Gallic campaign was against the Helvetii[486] and
Tigurini, who had burnt their cities, twelve in number, and their
villages, of which there were four hundred, and were advancing through
that part of Gaul which was subject to the Romans, like the Cimbri and
Teutones of old, to whom they were considered to be not inferior in
courage and in numbers equal, being in all three hundred thousand, of
whom one hundred and ninety thousand were fighting men. The Tigurini
were not opposed by Cæsar in person, but by Labienus, who was sent
against them by Cæsar and totally defeated them near the Arar. The
Helvetii fell on Cæsar unexpectedly as he was leading his forces to a
friendly city, but he succeeded in making his way to a strong
position, where he rallied his army and prepared for battle. A horse
being brought to him, he said, "I shall want this for the pursuit
after I have defeated the enemy; but let us now move on against them;"
and accordingly he made the charge on foot. After a long and difficult
contest, the Helvetian warriors were driven back, but the hardest
struggle was about the chariots and the camp, for the Helvetians made
a stand there and a desperate resistance, and also their wives and
children, who fought till they were cut to pieces, and the battle was
hardly over at midnight. This glorious deed of victory Cæsar followed
up by one still better, for he brought together those who had escaped
from the battle and compelled them to re-occupy the tract which they
had left and to rebuild the cities which they had destroyed; and the
number of these was above one hundred thousand. His object in this
measure was to prevent the Germans from crossing the Rhenus and
occupying the vacant country.

XIX. His next contest was with the Germans and for the immediate
defence of the Gauls, although he had before this made an alliance
with their king Ariovistus[487] in Rome. But the Germans were
intolerable neighbours to Cæsar's subjects, and if opportunity
offered, it was supposed that they would not remain satisfied with
what they had, but would invade and occupy Gaul. Cæsar observing his
officers afraid of the approaching contest, and particularly the men
of rank and the youths who had joined him in the expectation of
finding a campaign with Cæsar a matter of pleasure and profit, called
them to a public assembly and bade them leave him and not fight
against their inclination since they were so cowardly and effeminate:
as for himself he said he would take the tenth legion by itself and
lead it against the enemy, knowing that he should not have to deal
with a braver enemy than the Cimbri, and that he was not a worse
general than Marius. Upon this the tenth legion sent a deputation of
their body to thank him, but the rest of the legions abused their own
officers, and the whole army, full of impetuosity and eagerness, all
followed Cæsar, marching for many days, till they encamped within two
hundred stadia of the enemy. The courage of Ariovistus was somewhat
broken by the bare approach of the Romans; for as he had supposed that
the Romans would not stand the attack of the Germans, and he never
expected that they would turn assailants, he was amazed at Cæsar's
daring and he also saw that his own army was disturbed. The spirit of
the Germans was still more blunted by the predictions of their wise
women, who observing the eddies in the rivers and drawing signs from
the whirlings and noise of the waters, foreboded the future and
declared that the army ought not to fight before it was new moon.
Cæsar hearing of this and perceiving that the Germans were inactive,
thought it a good opportunity for engaging with them, while they were
out of spirits instead of sitting still and waiting for their time. By
attacking their fortifications and the hills on which they were
encamped, he irritated the Germans and provoked them to come down in
passion and fight. The Germans were completely routed and pursued to
the Rhenus a distance of four hundred stadia, and the whole of this
space was strewed with dead bodies and arms. Ariovistus with a few
escaped across the river. The dead are said to have been eighty
thousand in number.

XX. After these exploits he left his forces among the Sequani[488] to
winter, and with the view of attending to what was going on at Rome,
came down to Gaul about the Padus, which was a part of his province;
for the river Rubico separates the rest of Italy from Gaul beneath the
Alps. Fixing his residence there, he carried on his political
intrigues, and many persons came to visit him to whom he gave what
they asked for; and he dismissed all either with their wishes
satisfied, or with hopes. During the whole period of his government in
Gaul, he conducted his operations without attracting any attention
from Pompeius, though at one time he was subduing the enemy by the
arms of the citizens, and at another capturing and subjecting the
citizens by the money which he got from the enemy. Hearing that the
Belgæ[489] had risen in arms, who were the most powerful nation of the
Gauls and in possession of a third part of all Gaul, and that they had
assembled many ten thousands of armed men, he immediately turned about
and went against them with all possible expedition; and falling upon
the enemy while they were plundering the Gauls who were in alliance
with the Romans, he put to flight and destroyed those who were
collected in greatest numbers and the chief part of them after an
unsuccessful resistance, and such was the slaughter that the Romans
crossed the lakes and deep rivers over the dead bodies. Of the rebels
all who dwelt near the ocean surrendered without resistance; but
against the fiercest and most warlike of those in these parts, the
Nervii,[490] Cæsar led his forces. The Nervii, who inhabited the dense
thickets and had placed their families and property in a deep recess
of the forest as far as possible from the enemy, suddenly, to the
number of sixty thousand, attacked Cæsar while he was fortifying his
camp and not expecting a battle, and they put the Roman cavalry to
flight, and surrounding the twelfth and seventh legions, killed all
the centurions. If Cæsar had not seized a shield and, making his way
through the first ranks, charged the barbarians, and if the tenth
legion had not run down from the heights to support him when he was in
danger of being overpowered, and broken the ranks of the enemy, it is
supposed that not a single Roman would have escaped. Encouraged by
Cæsar's intrepidity, the Romans fought, as the saying is, beyond their
strength, but yet they could not put the Nervii to flight, who
defended themselves till they were cut to pieces. Out of sixty
thousand only five hundred are said to have escaped; and three
senators out of four hundred.

XXI. The Senate on receiving intelligence of this victory, decreed
that for fifteen days[491] there should be sacrifices to the gods and
cessation from all business, with feasting, which had never been done
before, for so long a time. For the danger was considered to have been
great, so many nations having broken out at once; and because Cæsar
was the conqueror, the good will of the many towards him made the
victory more splendid. And accordingly, having settled affairs in
Gaul, he again spent the winter in the plain of the Padus, and
employed himself in intriguing at Rome. Not only the candidates for
the offices of the State carried their election by Cæsar supplying
them with money which they spent in bribing the people, and directed
all their measures to the increase of Cæsar's power, but the greater
part of the Romans most distinguished for rank and political power,
came to see him at Luca,[492] Pompeius and Crassus, and Appius, the
governor of Sardinia, and Nepos, proconsul of Iberia, so that there
were a hundred and twenty lictors there, and more than two hundred
senators. Their deliberations resulted in this: it was agreed that
Pompeius and Crassus should be made consuls, and that Cæsar should
have an allowance of money and five additional years in his province,
which to all reflecting people seemed the most extravagant thing of
all. For those who were receiving so much from Cæsar, urged the Senate
to grant him money as if he had none, or rather compelled the Senate
to do it, groaning as it were over its own decrees. Cato, indeed, was
not present, for he had been purposely sent out of the way on a
mission to Cyprus; and Favonius, who affected to imitate Cato, finding
he could do nothing by his opposition, hastily left the Senate and
began to clamour to the people. But nobody attended to him, some from
fear of displeasing Pompeius and Crassus, but the greater part kept
quiet to please Cæsar, living on hopes from him.

XXII. Cæsar again returned to his troops in Gaul where he found much
war in the country, for two great German nations had just crossed the
Rhenus for the purpose of getting land; the one nation was called
Usipes,[493] and the other Tenteritæ. Respecting the battle with them,
Cæsar says in his Commentaries,[494] that the barbarians, while they
were treating with him during a truce, attacked on their march and so
put to flight his own cavalry to the number of five thousand with
eight hundred of their own, for his men were not expecting an attack;
that they then sent other ambassadors to him intending to deceive him
again, whom he detained, and then led his army against the barbarians,
considering all faith towards such faithless men and violators of
truces to be folly. But Tanusius[495] says that while the senate were
decreeing festivals and sacrifices for the victory, Cato delivered it
as his opinion, that they ought to give up Cæsar to the barbarians,
and so purge themselves of the violation of the truce on behalf of the
city, and turn the curse on the guilty man. Of those who had crossed
the river there were slaughtered to the number of four hundred
thousand, and the few who recrossed the river were received by the
Sugambri[496] a German tribe. Cæsar laying hold of this ground of
complaint against the Germans, and being also greedy of glory and
desirous to be the first man to cross the Rhenus with an army, began
to build a bridge over the river, which was very broad, and in this
part of the bed spread out widest, and was rough, and ran with a
strong current so as to drive the trunks of trees that were carried
down and logs of wood against the supports of the bridge,[497] and
tear them asunder. But Cæsar planted large timbers across the bed of
the river above the bridge to receive the trees that floated down, and
thus bridling the descending current, beyond all expectation he
accomplished the completion of the bridge in ten days.

XXIII. Cæsar now led his troops over the river, no one venturing to
oppose him, and even the Suevi, the most valiant of the Germans,
retired with their property into deep woody valleys. After devastating
with fire the enemy's country and encouraging all those who favoured
the Romans, he returned into Gaul after spending eighteen days in
Germany. His expedition against the Britanni[498] was notorious for
its daring: for he was the first who entered the western Ocean with
an armament and sailed through the Atlantic sea, leading an army to
war; and by attempting to occupy an island of incredible magnitude,
which furnished matter for much dispute to numerous writers, who
affirmed that the name and the accounts about it were pure inventions,
for it never had existed and did not then exist, he extended the Roman
supremacy beyond the inhabited world. After twice crossing over to the
island from the opposite coast of Gaul, and worsting the enemy in many
battles rather than advantaging his own men, for there was nothing
worth taking from men who lived so wretched a life and were so poor,
he brought the war to a close not such as he wished, but taking
hostages from the king and imposing a tribute, he retired from the
island. On his return he found letters which were just going to cross
over to him from his friends in Rome, informing him of his daughter's
death, who died in child-birth in the house of her husband Pompeius.
Great was the grief of Pompeius, and great was the grief of Cæsar; and
their friends were also troubled, as the relationship was now
dissolved which maintained peace and concord in the State, which but
for this alliance was threatened with disturbance. The child also died
after surviving the mother only a few days. Now the people, in spite
of the tribunes, carried Julia[499] to the Field of Mars, where her
obsequies were celebrated; and there she lies.

XXIV. As the force of Cæsar was now large, he was obliged to
distribute it in many winter encampments. But while he was on his road
to Italy, according to his custom, there was another general rising of
the Gauls, and powerful armies scouring the country attempted to
destroy the winter camps, and attacked the Roman entrenchments. The
most numerous and bravest of the revolted Gauls under Abriorix
destroyed Cotta[500] and Titurius with their army; and the legion
under Cicero[501] they surrounded with sixty thousand men and
blockaded, and they came very near taking the camp by storm, for all
the Romans had been wounded and were courageously defending themselves
above their strength. When this intelligence reached Cæsar, who was at
a distance, he quickly turned about, and getting together seven
thousand men in all, he hurried to release Cicero from the blockade.
The besiegers were aware of his approach and met him with the
intention of cutting him off at once, for they despised the fewness of
his numbers. But Cæsar, deceiving the enemy, avoided them continually,
and having occupied a position which was advantageous to one who had
to contend against many with a small force, he fortified his camp, and
kept his men altogether from fighting; and he made them increase the
height of the ramparts and build up the gates as if they were afraid,
his manœuvre being to make the enemy despise him, till at last when
they made their assault in scattered bodies, urged by self-confidence,
sallying out he put them to flight and killed many of them.

XXV.[502] The frequent defections of the Gauls in those parts were
thus quieted, and also by Cæsar during the winter moving about in all
directions and carefully watching disturbances. For there had come to
him from Italy three legions to replace those that had perished,
Pompeius having lent him two of those which were under his command,
and one legion having been newly raised in Gaul upon the Padus. But in
the course of time there showed themselves, what had long in secret
been planted and spread abroad by the most powerful men among the most
warlike tribes, the elements of the greatest and the most dangerous of
all the wars in Gaul, strengthened by a numerous body of young men
armed and collected from all quarters, and by great stores brought
together, and fortified cities, and countries difficult of access. And
at that time, during the winter, frozen rivers and forests buried in
snow, and plains overflowed by winter torrents, and in some parts
paths that could not be discovered for the depth of the snow, and in
other parts the great uncertainty of a march through marshes and
streams diverted from their course, seemed to place the proceedings of
the insurgents altogether beyond any attempt on the part of Cæsar.
Accordingly many tribes had revolted, but the leaders of the revolt
were the Arvenni and the Carnuntini; Vergentorix was elected to the
supreme direction of the war, he whose father the Gauls had put to
death on the ground of aiming at a tyranny.

XXVI. Vergentorix,[503] dividing his force into many parts, and
placing over them many commanders, began to gain over all the
surrounding country as far as those who bordered on the Arar, it being
his design, as Cæsar's enemies in Rome were combining against him, to
rouse all Gaul to war. If he had attempted this a little later, when
Cæsar was engaged in the civil war, alarms no less than those from the
invasion of the Cimbri would have seized on Italy. But now Cæsar, who
appears to have had the talent for making the best use of all
opportunities in war, and particularly critical seasons, as soon as he
heard of the rising, set out on his march, by the very roads[504] that
he traversed, and the impetuosity and rapidity of his march in so
severe a winter letting the barbarians see that an invincible and
unvanquished army was coming against them. For where no one believed
that a messenger or a letter-carrier from him could make his way in a
long time, there was Cæsar seen with all his army, at once ravaging
their lands, and destroying the forts, taking cities, and receiving
those who changed sides and came over to him, till at last even the
nation of the Edui[505] declared against him, who up to this time had
called themselves brothers of the Romans, and had received signal
distinction, but now by joining the insurgents they greatly
dispirited Cæsar's troops. In consequence of this, Cæsar moved from
those parts, and passed over the territory of the Lingones,[506]
wishing to join the Sequani, who were friends, and formed a bulwark in
front of Italy against the rest of Gaul. There the enemy fell upon him
and hemmed him in with many ten thousands, upon which Cæsar resolved
to fight a decisive battle against the combined forces, and after a
great contest, he gained a victory at last, and with great slaughter,
routed the barbarians; but at first it appears that he sustained some
loss, and the Aruveni show a dagger[507] suspended in a temple, which
they say was taken from Cæsar. Cæsar himself afterwards saw it, and
smiled; and when his friends urged him to take it down, he would not,
because he considered it consecrated.

XXVII. However, the chief part of those who then escaped, fled with
the king to the city of Alesia.[508] And while Cæsar was besieging
this city, which was considered to be impregnable by reason of the
strength of the walls and the number of the defenders, there fell upon
him from without a danger great beyond all expectation. For the
strength of all the nations in Gaul assembling in arms came against
Alesia, to the number of three hundred thousand; and the fighting men
in the city were not fewer than one hundred and seventy thousand; so
that Cæsar being caught between two such forces and blockaded, was
compelled to form two walls for his protection, the one towards the
city, and the other opposite those who had come upon him, since, if
these forces should unite, his affairs would be entirely ruined. On
many accounts then, and with good reason, the hazard before the walls
of Alesia was famed abroad, as having produced deeds of daring and
skill such as no other struggle had done; but it is most worthy of
admiration that Cæsar engaged with so many thousands outside of the
town and defeated them without it being known to those in the city;
and still more admirable, that this was also unknown to the Romans who
were guarding the wall towards the city. For they knew nothing of the
victory till they heard the weeping of the men in Alesia and the
wailing of the women, when they saw on the other side many shields
adorned with silver and gold, and many breastplates smeared with
blood, and also cups and Gallic tents conveyed by the Romans to their
camp. So quickly did so mighty a force, like a phantom or a dream,
vanish out of sight and disperse, the greater part of the men having
fallen in battle. But those who held Alesia, after giving no small
trouble to themselves and to Cæsar, at last surrendered; and the
leader of the whole war, Vergentorix, putting on his best armour, and
equipping his horse, came out through the gates, and riding round
Cæsar who was seated, and then leaping down from his horse, he threw
off his complete armour, and seating himself at Cæsar's feet, he
remained there till he was delivered up to be kept for the triumph.

XXVIII.[509] Cæsar had long ago resolved to put down Pompeius, as
Pompeius also had fully resolved to do towards him. For now that
Crassus had lost his life among the Parthians, who kept a watch over
both of them, it remained for one of them, in order to be the chief,
to put down him who was, and to him who was the chief, to take off the
man whom he feared, in order that this might not befall him. But it
had only recently occurred to Pompeius to take alarm, and hitherto he
had despised Cæsar, thinking it would be no difficult thing for the
man whom he had elevated to be again depressed by him; but Cæsar, who
had formed his design from the beginning, like an athlete, removed
himself to a distance from his antagonists, and exercised himself in
the Celtic wars, and thus disciplined his troops and increased his
reputation, being elevated by his exploits to an equality with the
victories of Pompeius; also laying hold of pretexts, some furnished by
the conduct of Pompeius himself, and others by the times and the
disordered state of the administration at Rome, owing to which, those
who were candidates for magistracies placed tables in public and
shamelessly bribed the masses, and the people being hired went down to
show their partisanship not with votes on behalf of their briber, but
with bows and swords and slings. And after polluting the Rostra with
blood and dead bodies, they separated, leaving the city to anarchy,
like a ship carried along without a pilot, so that sensible men were
well content if matters should result in nothing worse than a monarchy
after such madness and such tempest. And there were many who even
ventured to say publicly that the state of affairs could only be
remedied by a monarchy, and that they ought to submit to this remedy
when applied by the mildest of physicians, hinting at Pompeius. But
when Pompeius in what he said affected to decline the honour, though
in fact he was more than anything else labouring to bring about his
appointment as dictator, Cato, who saw through his intention,
persuaded the Senate to appoint him sole consul, that he might not by
violent means get himself made dictator, and might be contented with a
mere constitutional monarchy. They also decreed an additional period
for his provinces: and he had two, Iberia[510] and all Libya, which he
administered by sending Legati and maintaining armies, for which he
received out of the public treasury a thousand talents every year.

XXIX. Upon this, Cæsar began to canvass for a consulship by sending
persons to Rome, and also for a prorogation of the government of his
provinces. At first Pompeius kept silent, but Marcellus[511] and
Lentulus opposed his claim, for they hated Cæsar on other grounds, and
they added to what was necessary what was not necessary, to dishonour
and insult him. For they deprived of the citizenship the inhabitants
of Novum Comum[512] a colony lately settled by Cæsar in Gaul; and
Marcellus, who was consul, punished with stripes one of the Senators
of Novum Comum who had come to Rome, and added too this insult, "That
he put these marks upon him to show that he was not a Roman," and he
told him to go and show them to Cæsar. After the consulship of
Marcellus, when Cæsar had now profusely poured forth his Gallic wealth
for all those engaged in public life to draw from, and had released
Curio[513] the tribune from many debts, and given to Paulus the consul
fifteen hundred talents, out of which he decorated the Forum with the
Basilica, a famous monument which he built in place of the old one
called Fulvia;--under these circumstances, Pompeius, fearing cabal,
both openly himself and by means of his friends exerted himself to
have a successor[514] appointed to Cæsar in his government, and he
sent and demanded back of him the soldiers[515] which he had lent to
Cæsar for the Gallic wars. Cæsar sent the men back after giving each
of them a present of two hundred and fifty drachmæ. The officers who
led these troops to Pompeius, spread abroad among the people reports
about Cæsar which were neither decent nor honest; and they misled
Pompeius by ill-founded hopes, telling him that the army of Cæsar
longed to see him, and that while he with difficulty directed affairs
at Rome owing to the odium produced by secret intrigues, the force
with Cæsar was all ready for him, and that if Cæsar's soldiers should
only cross over to Italy, they would forthwith be on his side: so
hateful, they said, had Cæsar become to them on account of his
numerous campaigns, and so suspected owing to their fear of monarchy.
With all this Pompeius was inflated, and he neglected to get soldiers
in readiness, as if he were under no apprehension; but by words and
resolution he was overpowering Cæsar, as he supposed, by carrying
decrees against him, which Cæsar cared not for at all. It is even said
that one of the centurions who had been sent by him to Rome, while
standing in front of the Senate-house, on hearing that the Senate
would not give Cæsar a longer term in his government. "But this," he
said, "shall give it," striking the hilt of his sword with his hand.

XXX. However, the claim of Cæsar at least had a striking show of
equity. For he proposed that he should lay down his arms and that when
Pompeius had done the same and both had become private persons, they
should get what favours they could from the citizens; and he argued
that if they took from him his power and confirmed to Pompeius what he
had, they would be stigmatizing one as a tyrant and making the other a
tyrant in fact. When Curio made this proposal before the people on
behalf of Cæsar, he was loudly applauded; and some even threw chaplets
of flowers upon him as on a victorious athlete. Antonius, who was
tribune, produced to the people a letter[516] of Cæsar's on this
subject which he had received, and he read it in spite of the
consuls. But in the Senate, Scipio, the father-in-law of Pompeius,
made a motion, that if Cæsar did not lay down his arms on a certain
day, he should be declared an enemy. Upon the consuls putting the
question, whether they were of opinion that Pompeius should dismiss
his troops, and again, whether Cæsar should, very few voted in favour
of the former question, and all but a few voted in favour of the
latter; but when Antonius[517] on his side moved that both should
dismiss their troops, all unanimously were in favour of that opinion.
Scipio made a violent opposition, and Lentulus, the consul, called out
that they needed arms to oppose a robber, and not votes, on which the
Senate broke up and the Senators changed their dress as a sign of
lamentation on account of the dissension.

XXXI. But when letters had come from Cæsar by which he appeared to
moderate his demands, for he proposed to surrender everything else
except Gaul within the Alps and Illyricum with two legions, which
should be given to him to hold till he was a candidate for a second
consulship, and Cicero the orator, who had just returned from Cilicia
and was labouring at a reconciliation, was inducing Pompeius to
relent, and Pompeius was ready to yield in everything else except as
to the soldiers, whom he still insisted on taking from Cæsar, Cicero
urged the friends of Cæsar to give in and to come to a settlement on
the terms of the above-mentioned provinces and the allowance of six
thousand soldiers, only to Cæsar. Pompeius was ready to yield and to
give way; but the consul Lentulus would not let him, and he went so
far as to insult and drive with dishonour from the Senate both Curio
and Antonius, thus himself contriving for Cæsar the most specious of
all pretexts, by the aid of which indeed Cæsar mainly excited the
passions of his men, pointing out to them that men of distinction and
magistrates had made their escape in hired vehicles in the dress of
slaves. For, putting on this guise through fear, they had stolen out
of Rome.

XXXII. Now Cæsar had about him no more than three hundred horse and
five thousand legionary soldiers; for the rest of his army, which had
been left beyond the Alps, was to be conducted by those whom he sent
for that purpose. Seeing that the commencement of his undertaking and
the onset did not so much require a large force at the present, but
were to be effected by the alarm which a bold stroke would create and
by quickly seizing his opportunity, for he concluded that he should
strike terror by his unexpected movement more easily than he could
overpower his enemies by attacking them with all his force, he ordered
his superior officers and centurions with their swords alone and
without any other weapons to take Ariminum, a large city of Gaul,
avoiding all bloodshed and confusion as much as possible; and he
intrusted the force to Hortensius.[518] Cæsar himself passed the day
in public, standing by some gladiators who were exercising, and
looking on; and a little before evening after attending to his person
and going into the mess-room and staying awhile with those who were
invited to supper, just as it was growing dark he rose, and
courteously addressing the guests, told them to wait for his return,
but he had previously given notice to a few of his friends to follow
him, not all by the same route, but by different directions. Mounting
one of the hired vehicles, he drove at first along another road, and
then turning towards Ariminium, when he came to the stream which
divides Gaul within the Alps from the rest of Italy (it is called
Rubico[519] , and he began to calculate as he approached nearer to
the danger, and was agitated by the magnitude of the hazard, he
checked his speed; and halting he considered about many things with
himself in silence, his mind moving from one side to the other, and
his will then underwent many changes; and he also discussed at length
with his friends who were present, of whom Pollio Asinius[520] was
one, all the difficulties, and enumerated the evils which would ensue
to all mankind from his passage of the river, and how great a report
of it they would leave to posterity. At last, with a kind of passion,
as if he were throwing himself out of reflection into the future, and
uttering what is the usual expression with which men preface their
entry upon desperate enterprises and daring, "Let the die be cast," he
hurried to cross the river; and thence advancing at full speed, he
attacked Ariminum before daybreak and took it. It is said that on the
night before the passage of the river, he had an impure dream,[521]
for he dreamed that he was in unlawful commerce with his mother.

XXXIII. But when Ariminum was taken, as if the war had been let loose
through wide gates over all the earth and sea at once, and the laws of
the state were confounded together with the limits of the province,
one would not have supposed that men and women only, as on other
occasions, in alarm were hurrying through Italy, but that the cities
themselves, rising from their foundations, were rushing in flight one
through another; and Rome herself, as if she were deluged by torrents,
owing to the crowding of the people from the neighbouring towns and
their removal, could neither easily be pacified by magistrate nor kept
in order by words, and in the midst of the mighty swell and the
tossing of the tempest, narrowly escaped being overturned by her own
agitation. For contending emotions and violent movements occupied
every place. Neither did those who rejoiced keep quiet, but in many
places, as one might expect in a large city, coming into collision
with those who were alarmed and sorrowing, and being full of
confidence as to the future, they fell to wrangling with them; and
people from various quarters assailed Pompeius, who was terror-struck
and had to endure the censure of one party for strengthening Cæsar
against himself and the supremacy of Rome, while others charged him
with inciting Lentulus to insult Cæsar who was ready to give way and
was proposing fair terms of accommodation. Favonius bade him stamp on
the ground with his foot; for Pompeius on one occasion in an arrogant
address to the Senate, told them not to be concerned or trouble
themselves about preparations for war; when Cæsar advanced, he would
stamp upon the earth with his foot and fill Italy with armies.
However, even then Pompeius had the advantage over Cæsar in amount of
forces: but nobody would let the man follow his own judgment: and
giving way to the many false reports and alarms, that the war was now
close at hand and the enemy in possession of everything, and carried
away by the general movement, he declared by an edict that he saw
there was tumult, and he left the city after giving his commands to
the Senate to follow, and that no one should stay who preferred his
country and freedom to tyranny.

XXXIV.[522] Accordingly the consuls fled without even making the
sacrifices which it was usual to make before quitting the city; and
most of the senators also took to flight, in a manner as if they were
robbing, each snatching of his own what first came to hand as if it
belonged to another. There were some also who, though they had
hitherto vehemently supported the party of Cæsar, through alarm at
that time lost their presence of mind, and without any necessity for
it were carried along with the current of that great movement. A most
piteous sight was the city, when so great a storm was coming on, left
like a ship whose helmsman had given her up, to be carried along and
dashed against anything that lay in her way. But though this desertion
of the city was so piteous a thing, men for the sake of Pompeius
considered the flight to be their country, and they were quitting Rome
as if it were the camp of Cæsar; for even Labienus,[523] one of
Cæsar's greatest friends, who had been his legatus and had fought with
him most gallantly in all the Gallic wars, then fled away from Cæsar
and came to Pompeius. But Cæsar sent to Labienus both his property and
his baggage; and advancing he pitched his camp close by Domitius, who
with thirty cohorts held Corfinium.[524] Domitius despairing of
himself asked his physician, who was a slave, for poison, and taking
what was given, he drank it, intending to die. Shortly after, hearing
that Cæsar showed wonderful clemency towards his prisoners, he
bewailed his fate and blamed the rashness of his resolution. But on
the physician assuring him that what he had taken was only a sleeping
potion and not deadly, he sprung up overjoyed, and going to Cæsar,
received his right hand, and yet he afterwards went over again to
Pompeius. This intelligence being carried to Rome made people more
tranquil, and some who had fled, returned.

XXXV. Cæsar took the troops of Domitius into his service, as well
as the soldiers that were raising for Pompeius whom he surprised in
the cities; and having now got a numerous and formidable army, he
advanced against Pompeius. Pompeius did not await his approach, but
fled to Brundisium, and sending the consuls over before him with a
force to Dyrrachium,[525] himself shortly after sailed from Brundisium
upon the approach of Cæsar, as will be told more particularly in the
Life of Pompeius.[526] Though Cæsar wished to pursue immediately, he
was prevented by want of ships, and he turned back to Rome, having in
sixty days without bloodshed become master of Italy. Finding the city
more tranquil than he expected and many of the Senators in it, he
addressed them in moderate and constitutional language,[527] urging
them to send persons to Pompeius with suitable terms of accommodation;
but no one listened to his proposal, either because they feared
Pompeius, whom they had deserted, or supposed that Cæsar did not
really mean what he said, and merely used specious words. When the
tribune Metellus[528] attempted to prevent him from taking money from
the reserved treasure[529] and alleged certain laws, Cæsar replied,
"That the same circumstances did not suit arms and laws: but do you,
if you don't like what is doing, get out of the way, for war needs not
bold words; when we have laid down our arms after coming to terms,
then you may come forward and make your speeches to the people." "And
in saying this," he continued, "I waive part of my rights, for you are
mine, and all are mine, who have combined against me, now that I have
caught them." Having thus spoken to Metellus he walked to the doors of
the treasury; but as the keys were not found, he sent for smiths and
ordered them to break the locks. Metellus again opposed him, and some
commended him for it, but Cæsar, raising his voice, threatened to kill
him, if he did not stop his opposition, "And this," said he, "young
man, you well know, is more painful for me to have said than to do."
These words alarmed Metellus and made him retire, and also caused
everything else to be supplied to Cæsar for the war without further
trouble, and with speed.

XXXVI. He marched against Iberia,[530] having first determined to
drive out Afranius and Varro, the legati of Pompeius, and having got
into his power the forces and the provinces in those parts, then to
advance against Pompeius without leaving any enemy in his rear. After
having often been exposed to risk in his own person from ambuscades,
and with his army chiefly from want of provisions, he never gave up
pursuing, challenging to battle and hemming in the enemy with his
lines, till he had made himself master of their camps and forces. The
generals escaped to Pompeius.

XXXVII. On his return to Rome, Piso, the father-in-law of Cæsar,
advised that they should send commissioners to Pompeius to treat of
terms, but Isauricus opposed the measure to please Cæsar. Being chosen
Dictator by the Senate, he restored the exiles, and the children of
those who had suffered in the times of Sulla,[531] he reinstated in
their civil rights, and he relieved the debtors by a certain abatement
of the interest, and took in hand other measures of the like kind, not
many in number; but in eleven days, he abdicated the monarchy, and
declaring himself and Servilius Isauricus consuls[532] set out on his
expedition. The rest of his forces he passed by on his hurried march,
and with six hundred picked horsemen and five legions, the time being
the winter solstice and the commencement of January (and this pretty
nearly corresponds to the Poseideon of the Athenians), he put to sea,
and crossing the Ionian gulf he took Oricum and Apollonia; but he sent
back his ships to Brundisium for the soldiers whom he had left behind
on his march. But while the men were still on the road, as they were
already passed the vigour of their age and worn out by the number of
their campaigns, they murmured against Cæsar, "Whither now will he
lead us and where will this man at last carry us to, hurrying us
about and treating us as if we could never be worn out and as if we
were inanimate things? even the sword is at last exhausted by blows,
and shield and breastplate need to be spared a little after so long
use. Even our wounds do not make Cæsar consider that he commands
perishable bodies, and that we are but mortal towards endurance and
pain; and the winter season and the storms of the sea even a god
cannot command; but this man runs all risks, as if he were not
pursuing his enemies, but flying from them." With such words as these
they marched slowly towards Brundisium. But when they found that Cæsar
had embarked, then quickly changing their temper, they reproached
themselves as traitors to their Imperator; and they abused their
officers also for not hastening the march. Sitting on the heights,
they looked towards the sea and towards Epirus for the ships which
were to carry them over to their commander.

XXXVIII. At Apollonia, as Cæsar had not a force sufficient to oppose
the enemy, and the delay of the troops from Italy put him in
perplexity and much uneasiness, he formed a desperate design, without
communicating it to any one, to embark in a twelve-oared boat and go
over to Brundisium, though the sea was commanded by so many ships of
the enemy.[533] Accordingly, disguising himself in a slave's dress, he
went on board by night, and throwing himself down as a person of no
importance, he lay quiet. While the river Anius[534] was carrying down
the boat towards the sea, the morning breeze, which at that time
generally made the water smooth at the outlet of the river by driving
the waves before it, was beaten down by a strong wind which blew all
night over the sea; and the river, chafing at the swell of the sea and
the opposition of the waves, was becoming rough, being driven back by
the huge blows and violent eddies, so that it was impossible for the
master of the boat to make head against it; on which he ordered the
men to change about, intending to turn the boat round. Cæsar
perceiving this, discovered himself, and taking the master by the
hand, who was alarmed at the sight of him, said, "Come, my good man,
have courage and fear nothing; you carry Cæsar and the fortune of
Cæsar in your boat." The sailors now forgot the storm, and sticking to
their oars, worked with all their force to get out of the river. But
as it was impossible to get on, after taking in much water and running
great risk at the mouth of the river, Cæsar very unwillingly consented
that the master should put back. On his return, the soldiers met him
in crowds, and blamed him much and complained that he did not feel
confident of victory even with them alone, but was vexed and exposed
himself to risk on account of the absent, as if he distrusted those
who were present.

XXXIX. Shortly after Antonius arrived from Brundisium with the troops;
and Cæsar, being now confident, offered battle to Pompeius, who was
well posted and had sufficient supplies both from land and sea, while
Cæsar at first had no abundance, and afterwards was hard pressed for
want of provisions: but the soldiers cut up a certain root[535] and
mixing it with milk, ate it. And once, having made loaves of it, they
ran up to the enemies' outposts, threw the bread into the camp, and
pitched it about, adding, that so long as the earth produces such
roots, they will never stop besieging Pompeius. Pompeius, however,
would not let either the matter of the loaves or these words be made
known to the mass of the army; for his soldiers were dispirited and
dreaded the savage temper and endurance of the enemy as if they were
wild beasts. There were continually skirmishes about the
fortifications of Pompeius, and Cæsar had the advantage in all except
one, in which there was a great rout of his troops and he was in
danger of losing his camp. For when Pompeius made an onset, no one
stood the attack, but the trenches were filled with the dying, and
Cæsar's men were falling about their own ramparts and bulwarks, being
driven in disorderly flight. Though Cæsar met the fugitives and
endeavoured to turn them, he had no success, and when he laid hold of
the colours, those who were carrying them threw them down, so that the
enemy took two and thirty, and Cæsar himself had a narrow escape with
his life. A tall, strong man was running away past by Cæsar, who
putting his hand upon him, ordered him to stand and face the enemy;
but the man, who was completely confounded by the danger, raised his
sword to strike him, on which Cæsar's shield-bearer struck the man
first and cut off his shoulder. Cæsar had so completely given up his
cause as lost, that when Pompeius either through caution or from some
accident did not put the finishing stroke to his great success, but
retreated after shutting up the fugitives within their ramparts, Cæsar
said to his friends as he was retiring, To-day the victory would be
with the enemy, if they had a commander who knew how to conquer. Going
into his tent and lying down, Cæsar spent that night of all nights in
the greatest agony and perplexity, considering that his generalship
had been bad, in that while a fertile country lay near him and the
rich cities of Macedonia and Thessaly, he had neglected to carry the
war thither, and was now stationed on the sea which the enemy
commanded with his ships, and that he was rather held in siege by want
of supplies than holding the enemy in siege by his arms. Accordingly,
after passing a restless night, full of uneasiness at the difficulty
and danger of his present position, he broke up his camp with the
determination of leading his troops into Macedonia to oppose Scipio,
for he concluded that either he should draw Pompeius after him to a
country where he would fight without the advantage of having the same
supplies from the sea, or that he would defeat Scipio if he were left
to himself.

XL. This encouraged the army of Pompeius and the officers about him
to stick close to Cæsar, whom they considered to have been defeated
and to be making his escape; though Pompeius himself was cautious
about hazarding a battle for so great a stake, and, as he was
excellently furnished with everything for prolonging the war, he
thought it best to wear out and weaken the vigour of the enemy, which
could not be long sustained. For the best fighting men in Cæsar's army
possessed experience and irresistible courage in battle; but in
marchings and making encampments and assaulting fortifications and
watching by night, they gave way by reason of their age, and their
bodies were unwieldy for labour, and owing to weakness, had lost their
alacrity. It was also reported that a pestilential disease was
prevalent in Cæsar's army, which had originated in the want of proper
food; and, what was chief of all, as Cæsar was neither well supplied
with money nor provisions, it might be expected that in a short time
his army would be broken up of itself.

XLI. For these reasons Pompeius did not wish to fight, and Cato alone
commended his design, because he wished to spare the citizens; for
after seeing those who had fallen in the battle to the number of a
thousand, he wrapped up his face and went away with tears in his eyes.
But all the rest abused Pompeius for avoiding a battle, and tried to
urge him on by calling him Agamemnon and King of Kings, by which they
implied that he was unwilling to lay down the sole command, and was
proud at having so many officers under his orders and coming to his
tent, Favonius, who aped Cato's freedom of speech, raved because they
should not be able even that year to enjoy the figs of Tusculum owing
to Pompeius being so fond of command; and Afranius (for he had just
arrived from Iberia, where he had shown himself a bad general), being
charged with betraying his army for a bribe, asked why they did not
fight with the merchant who had bought the provinces of him. Pressed
by all this importunity, Pompeius pursued Cæsar with the intention of
fighting, though contrary to his wish. Cæsar accomplished his march
with difficulty, as no one would supply him with provisions and he was
universally despised on account of his recent defeat; however, after
taking Gomphi,[536] a Thessalian city, he had not only provisions for
his army, but his men were unexpectedly relieved from their disease.
For they fell in with abundance of wine, of which they drank
plentifully, and revelling and rioting on their march, by means of
their drunkenness, they threw off and got rid of their complaint in
consequence of their bodies being brought into a different habit.

XLII. When the two armies had entered the plain of Pharsalus and
pitched their camps, Pompeius again fell back into his former opinion,
and there were also unlucky appearances and a vision in his
sleep.[537] He dreamed that he saw himself in the theatre, applauded
by the Romans. But those about him were so confident, and so fully
anticipated a victory, that Domitius and Scipio and Spinther were
disputing and bestirring themselves against one another about the
priesthood of Cæsar, and many persons sent to Rome to hire and get
possession of houses that were suitable for consuls and prætors,
expecting to be elected to magistracies immediately after the war. But
the cavalry showed most impatience for the battle, being sumptuously
equipped with splendid armour, and priding themselves on their
well-fed horses and fine persons, and on their numbers also, for they
were seven thousand against Cæsar's thousand. The number of the
infantry also was unequal, there being forty-five thousand matched
against twenty-two thousand.

XLIII. Cæsar, calling his soldiers together and telling them that
Corfinius[538] was close at hand with two legions, and that other
cohorts to the number of fifteen under Calenus were encamped near
Megara and Athens, asked if they would wait for them or hazard a
battle by themselves. The soldiers cried out aloud that they did not
wish him to wait, but rather to contrive and so manage his operations
that they might soonest come to a battle with their enemies. While he
was performing a lustration of the army, as soon as he had sacrificed
the first victim, the soothsayer said that within three days there
would be a decisive battle with the enemy. Upon Cæsar asking him, if
he saw any favourable sign in the victims as to the result of the
battle also, he replied, "You can answer this better for yourself: the
gods indicate a great change and revolution of the actual state of
things to a contrary state, so that if you think yourself prosperous
in your present condition, expect the worst fortune; but if you do
not, expect the better." As Cæsar was taking his round to inspect the
watches the night before the battle about midnight, there was seen in
the heavens a fiery torch, which seemed to pass over Cæsar's camp and
assuming a bright and flame-like appearance to fall down upon the camp
of Pompeius. In the morning watch they perceived that there was also a
panic confusion among the enemy. However, as Cæsar did not expect that
the enemy would fight on that day, he began to break up his camp with
the intention of marching to Scotussa.

XLIV. The tents were already taken down when the scouts rode up to him
with intelligence that the enemy were coming down to battle, whereupon
Cæsar was overjoyed, and after praying to the gods he arranged his
battle in three divisions. He placed Domitius Calvinus in command of
the centre, Antonius had the left wing, and he commanded the right,
intending to fight in the tenth legion. Observing that the cavalry of
the enemy were posting themselves opposite to this wing and fearing
their splendid appearance and their numbers, he ordered six cohorts to
come round to him from the last line without being observed and he
placed them in the rear of the right wing with orders what to do when
the enemy's cavalry made their attack. Pompeius commanded his own
right, and Domitius the left, and the centre was under Scipio, his
father-in-law. But all the cavalry crowded to the left, intending to
surround the right wing of the enemy and to make a complete rout of
the men who were stationed about the general; for they believed that
no legionary phalanx, however deep, could resist, but that their
opponents would be completely crushed and broken to pieces by an
attack of so many cavalry at once. When the signal for attack was
going to be given on both sides, Pompeius ordered the legionary
soldiers to stand with their spears presented and in close order to
wait the attack of the enemy till they were within a spear's throw.
But Cæsar says that here also Pompeius made a mistake, not knowing
that the first onset, accompanied with running and impetuosity, gives
force to the blows, and at the same time fires the courage, which is
thus fanned in every way. As Cæsar was about to move his phalanx and
was going into action, the first centurion that he spied was a man who
was faithful to him and experienced in war, and was encouraging those
under his command and urging them to vigorous exertion. Cæsar
addressing him by name said, "What hopes have we Caius
Crassinius,[539] and how are our men as to courage?" Crassinius
stretching out his right hand and calling out aloud, said, "We shall
have a splendid victory, Cæsar; and you shall praise me whether I
survive the day or die." Saying this, he was the first to fall on the
enemy at his full speed and carrying with him the hundred and twenty
soldiers who were under his command. Having cut through the first
rank, he was advancing with great slaughter of the enemy and was
driving them from their ground, when he was stopped by a blow from a
sword through the mouth, and the point came out at the back of his

XLV. The infantry having thus rushed together in the centre and being
engaged in the struggle, the cavalry of Pompeius proudly advanced from
the wing, extending their companies to enclose Cæsar's right; but
before they fell upon the enemy, the cohorts sprang forward from
among Cæsar's troops, not, according to the usual fashion of war,
throwing their spears nor yet holding them in their hands and aiming
at the thighs and legs of the enemy, but pushing them against their
eyes and wounding them in the face; and they had been instructed to do
this by Cæsar, who was confident that men who had no great familiarity
with battles or wounds, and were young and very proud of their beauty
and youth, would dread such wounds and would not keep their ground
both through fear of the present danger and the future disfigurement.
And it turned out so; for they could not stand the spears being pushed
up at them nor did they venture to look at the iron that was presented
against their eyes, but they turned away and covered their faces to
save them; and at last, having thus thrown themselves into confusion,
they turned to flight most disgracefully and ruined the whole cause.
For those who had defeated the cavalry, immediately surrounded the
infantry and falling on them in the rear began to cut them down. But
when Pompeius saw from the other wing the cavalry dispersed in flight,
he was no longer the same, nor did he recollect that he was Pompeius
Magnus, but more like a man who was deprived of his understanding by
the god than anything else,[540] he retired without speaking a word to
his tent, and sitting down awaited the result, until the rout becoming
general the enemy were assailing the ramparts, and fighting with those
who defended them. Then, as if he had recovered his senses and
uttering only these words, as it is reported, "What even to the
ramparts!" he put off his military and general's dress, and taking one
suited for a fugitive, stole away. But what fortunes he afterwards
had, and how he gave himself up to the Egyptians and was murdered, I
shall tell in the Life of Pompeius.

XLVI. When Cæsar entered the camp of Pompeius and saw the bodies of
those who were already killed, and the slaughter still going on among
the living, he said with a groan: They would have it so; they brought
me into such a critical position that I, Caius Cæsar, who have been
successful in the greatest wars, should have been condemned, if I had
disbanded my troops. Asinius Pollio[541] says that Cæsar uttered these
words on that occasion in Latin, and that he wrote them down in Greek.
He also says that the chief part of those who were killed were slaves,
and they were killed when the camp was taken; and that not more than
six thousand soldiers fell. Of those who were taken prisoners, Cæsar
drafted most into his legions; and he pardoned many men of
distinction, among whom was Brutus, who afterwards murdered him. Cæsar
is said to have been very much troubled at his not being found, but
when Brutus, who had escaped unhurt, presented himself to Cæsar, he
was greatly pleased.

XLVII. There were many prognostics of the victory, but the most
remarkable is that which is reported as having appeared at
Tralles.[542] In the temple of Victory there stood a statue of Cæsar,
and the ground about it was naturally firm and the surface was also
paved with hard stone; from this, they say, there sprung up a
palm-tree by the pedestal of the statue. In Patavium, Caius Cornelius,
a man who had reputation for his skill in divination, a fellow-citizen
and acquaintance of Livius the historian, happened to be sitting that
day to watch the birds. And first of all, as Livius says, he
discovered the time of the battle, and he said to those who were
present that the affair was now deciding and the men were going into
action. Looking again and observing the signs, he sprang up with
enthusiasm and called out, "You conquer, Cæsar." The bystanders being
surprised, he took the chaplet from his head and said with an oath,
that he would not put it on again till facts had confirmed his art.
Livius affirms that these things were so.

XLVIII. Cæsar after giving the Thessalians their liberty[543] in
consideration of his victory, pursued Pompeius. On reaching Asia[544]
he made the Cnidians free to please Theopompus,[545] the collector of
mythi, and he remitted to all the inhabitants of Asia the third of
their taxes. Arriving at Alexandria[546] after the death of Pompeius,
he turned away from Theodotus who brought him the head of Pompeius,
but he received his seal ring[547] and shed tears over it. All the
companions and intimate friends of Pompeius who were rambling about
the country and had been taken by the King, he treated well and gained
over to himself. He wrote to his friends in Rome, that the chief and
the sweetest pleasure that he derived from his victory, was to be able
to pardon any of those citizens who had fought against him. As to the
war[548] there, some say that it might have been avoided and that it
broke out in consequence of his passion for Kleopatra and was
discreditable to him and hazardous; but others blame the King's party
and chiefly the eunuch Potheinus,who possessed the chief power, and
having lately cut off Pompeius and driven out Kleopatra, was now
secretly plotting against Cæsar; and on this account they say that
Cæsar from that time passed the nights in drinking in order to protect
himself. But in his public conduct Pothinus was unbearable, for he
both said and did many things to bring odium on Cæsar and to insult
him. While measuring out to the soldiers the worst and oldest corn he
told them they must be satisfied with it and be thankful, as they were
eating what belonged to others; and at the meals he used only wooden
and earthen vessels, alleging that Cæsar had got all the gold and
silver vessels in payment for a debt.[549] For the father of the then
King owed Cæsar one thousand seven hundred and fifty times ten
thousand, of which Cæsar had remitted the seven hundred and fifty to
the King's sons before, but he now claimed the one thousand to
maintain his army with. Upon Pothinus now bidding him take his
departure and attend to his important affairs and that he should
afterwards receive his money back with thanks, Cæsar said, that least
of all people did he want the Egyptians as advisers, and he secretly
sent for Kleopatra from the country.

XLIX. Kleopatra,[550] taking Apollodorus the Sicilian alone of all her
friends with her, and getting into a small boat, approached the
palace as it was growing dark; and as it was impossible for her to
escape notice in any other way, she got into a bed sack and laid
herself out at full length, and Apollodorus, tying the sack together
with a cord, carried her through the doors to Cæsar. Cæsar is said to
have been first captivated by this device of Kleopatra, which showed a
daring temper, and being completely enslaved by his intercourse with
her and her attractions, he brought about an accommodation between
Kleopatra and her brother on the terms of her being associated with
him in the kingdom. A feast was held to celebrate the reconciliation,
during which a slave of Cæsar, his barber, owing to his timidity in
which he had no equal, leaving nothing unscrutinized, and listening
and making himself very busy, found out that a plot against Cæsar was
forming by Achillas the general and Potheinus the eunuch. Cæsar being
made acquainted with their design, placed a guard around the
apartment, and put Potheinus to death. Achillas escaped to the camp,
and raised about Cæsar a dangerous and difficult war for one who with
so few troops had to resist so large a city and force. In this contest
the first danger that he had to encounter was being excluded from
water, for the canals[551] were dammed up by the enemy; and, in the
second place, an attempt being made to cut off his fleet, he was
compelled to repel the danger with fire, which spreading from the
arsenals to the large library[552] destroyed it; and, in the third
place, in the battle near the Pharos[553] he leaped down from the
mound into a small boat and went to aid the combatants; but as the
Egyptians were coming against him from all quarters, he threw himself
into the sea and swam away with great difficulty. On this occasion it
is said that he had many papers in his hands, and that he did not let
them go, though the enemy were throwing missiles at him and he had to
dive under the water, but holding the papers above the water with one
hand, he swam with the other; but the boat was sunk immediately. At
last, when the King had gone over to the enemy, Cæsar attacked and
defeated them in a battle in which many fell and the King[554] himself
disappeared. Leaving Kleopatra[555] Queen of Egypt, who shortly after
gave birth to a child that she had by Cæsar, which the Alexandrines
named Cæsarion, he marched to Syria.

L. From Syria continuing his march through Asia he heard that Domitius
had been defeated by Pharnakes[556] son of Mithridates, and had fled
from Pontus with a few men; and that Pharnakes, who used his victory
without any moderation, and was in possession of Bithynia and
Cappadocia, also coveted Armenia, called the Little, and was stirring
up all the kings and tetrarchs in this part. Accordingly Cæsar
forthwith advanced against the man with three legions and fighting a
great battle near Zela drove Pharnakes in flight from Pontus, and
completely destroyed his army. In reporting to one of his friends at
Rome, Amantius,[557] the celerity and rapidity of this battle, he
wrote only three words: "I came, I saw, I conquered." In the Roman
language the three words ending in the like form of verb, have a
brevity which is not without its effect.

LI. After this, passing over to Italy he went up to Rome at the close
of the year for which he had been chosen Dictator[558] the second
time, though that office had never before been for a whole year; and
he was elected consul for the following year. He was much blamed about
a mutiny[559] that broke out among the soldiers in which they killed
two men of prætorian rank, Cosconius and Galba, because he reproved
his men no further than by calling them citizens instead of soldiers,
and he gave to each of them a thousand drachmæ, and allotted to them
much land in Italy. He also bore the blame of the madness of
Dolabella,[560] the covetousness of Amantius, and the drunkenness of
Antonius, and the greedy tricks of Corfinius in getting the house of
Pompeius, and his building it over again as if it were not fit for
him; for the Romans were annoyed at these things. But Cæsar, in the
present state of affairs, though he was not ignorant of these things,
and did not approve of them, was compelled to employ such men in his

LII. As Cato[561] and Scipio, after the battle near Pharsalus, had
fled to Libya, and there, with the assistance of King Juba, got
together a considerable force, Cæsar determined to go against them;
and about the winter solstice passing over to Sicily and wishing to
cut off from the officers about him all hopes of delay and tarrying
there, he placed his own tent on the margin of the waves,[562] and as
soon as there was a wind he went on board and set sail with three
thousand foot-soldiers and a few horsemen. Having landed them
unobserved he embarked again, for he was under some apprehension about
the larger part of his force; and having fallen in with it on the sea,
he conducted all to the camp. Now there was with him in the army a man
in other respects contemptible enough and of no note, but of the
family of the Africani, and his name was Scipio Sallutio;[563] and as
Cæsar heard that the enemy relied on a certain old oracular answer,
that it was always the privilege of the family of the Scipios to
conquer in Libya, either to show his contempt of Scipio as a general
by a kind of joke, or because he really wished to have the benefit of
the omen himself (it is difficult to say which), he used to place this
Sallutio in the front of the battles as if he were the leader of the
army; for Cæsar was often compelled to engage with the enemy and to
seek a battle, there being neither sufficient supply of corn for the
men nor fodder for the animals, but they were compelled to take the
sea-weed after washing off the salt and mixing a little grass with it
by way of sweetening it, and so to feed their horses. For the
Numidians, by continually showing themselves in great numbers and
suddenly appearing, kept possession of the country; and on one
occasion while the horsemen of Cæsar were amusing themselves with a
Libyan, who was exhibiting to them his skill in dancing and playing on
a flute at the same time in a surprising manner, and the men, pleased
with the sight, were sitting on the ground and the boys holding their
horses, the enemy suddenly coming round and falling upon them killed
some, and entered the camp together with the rest, who fled in
disorderly haste. And if Cæsar himself and Asinius Pollio had not come
out of the camp to help the men, and checked the pursuit, the war
would have been at an end. In another battle, also, the enemy had the
advantage in the encounter, on which occasion it is said that Cæsar,
seizing by the neck the man who bore the eagle and was running away,
turned him round, and said, "There is the enemy!"

LIII. However Scipio[564] was encouraged by these advantages to hazard
a decisive battle; and leaving Afranius and Juba[565] encamped each
separately at a short distance, he commenced making a fortified camp
above a lake near the city Thapsus, intending it as a place for the
whole army to sally forth from to battle and a place of refuge also.
While he was thus employed, Cæsar with incredible speed making his way
through woody grounds which contained certain approaches that had not
been observed, surrounded part of the enemy and attacked others in
front. Having put these to flight he availed himself of the critical
moment and the career of fortune, by means of which he captured the
camp of Afranius on the first assault, and at the first assault also
he broke into the camp of the Numidians from which Juba fled; and in a
small part of a single day he made himself master of three camps and
destroyed fifty thousand of the enemy without losing as many as fifty
of his own men. This is the account that some writers give of that
battle; but others say that Cæsar was not in the action himself, but
that as he was marshalling and arranging his forces, he was attacked
by his usual complaint, and that perceiving it as soon as it came on,
and before his senses were completely confounded and overpowered by
the malady, just as he was beginning to be convulsed, he was carried
to one of the neighbouring towers and stayed there quietly. Of the men
of consular and prætorian rank who escaped from the battle, some
killed themselves when they were being taken, and Cæsar put many to
death who were captured.

LIV. Being ambitious to take Cato[566] alive, Cæsar hastened to Utica,
for Cato was guarding that city and was not in the battle. Hearing
that Cato had put an end to himself, Cæsar was evidently annoyed, but
for what reason is uncertain. However, he said, "Cato, I grudge you
your death, for you also have grudged me the preservation of your
life." But the work which be wrote against Cato after his death cannot
be considered an indication that he was mercifully disposed towards
him or in a mood to be easily reconciled. For how can we suppose that
he would have spared Cato living, when he poured out against him after
he was dead so much indignation? However, some persons infer from his
mild treatment of Cicero and Brutus and ten thousand others of his
enemies that this discourse also was composed not from any enmity, but
from political ambition, for the following reason. Cicero wrote a
panegyric on Cato and gave the composition the title "Cato"; and the
discourse was eagerly read by many, as one may suppose, being written
by the most accomplished of orators on the noblest subject. This
annoyed Cæsar, who considered the panegyric on a man whose death he
had caused to be an attack upon himself. Accordingly in his treatise
he got together many charges against Cato; and the work is entitled
"Anticato."[567] Both compositions have many admirers, as well on
account of Cæsar as of Cato.

LV. However, on his return[568] to Rome from Libya, in the first place
Cæsar made a pompous harangue to the people about his victory, in
which he said that he had conquered a country large enough to supply
annually to the treasury two hundred thousand Attic medimni of corn,
and three million litræ of oil. In the next place he celebrated
triumphs,[569] the Egyptian, the Pontic, and the Libyan, not of
course for his victory over Scipio, but over Juba.[570] On that
occasion Juba also, the son of King Juba, who was still an infant, was
led in the triumphal procession, most fortunate in his capture, for
from being a barbarian and a Numidian he became numbered among the
most learned of the Greek writers. After the triumphs Cæsar made large
presents to the soldiers, and entertained the people with banquets and
spectacles, feasting the whole population at once at twenty-two
thousand triclina,[571] and exhibiting also shows of gladiators and
naval combats in honour of his daughter Julia who had been dead for
some time. After the shows a census[572] was taken, in which instead
of the three hundred and twenty thousand of former enumerations, there
were enrolled only one hundred and fifty thousand. So much desolation
had the civil wars produced and so large a proportion of the people
had been destroyed in them, not to reckon the miseries that had
befallen the rest of Italy and the provinces.

LVI. All this being completed, Cæsar was made consul[573] for the
fourth time, and set out to Iberia to attack the sons of Pompeius, who
were still young, but had got together a force of amazing amount and
displayed a boldness that showed they were worthy to command, so that
they put Cæsar in the greatest danger. The great battle was fought
near the city of Munda,[574] in which Cæsar, seeing that his men were
being driven from their ground and making a feeble resistance, ran
through the arms and the ranks calling out, "If they had no sense of
shame, to take and deliver him up to the boys." With difficulty and
after great exertion he put the enemy to flight and slaughtered above
thirty thousand of them, but he lost a thousand of his own best
soldiers. On retiring after the battle he said to his friends, that he
had often fought for victory, but now for the first time he had fought
for existence. He gained this victory on the day of the festival of
Bacchus, on which day it is said that Pompeius Magnus also went out to
battle; the interval was four years. The younger of the sons[575] of
Pompeius escaped, but after a few days Didius[576] brought the head of
the elder. This was the last war that Cæsar was engaged in; but the
triumph[577] that was celebrated for this victory vexed the Romans
more than anything else. For this was no victory over foreign leaders
nor yet over barbarian kings, but Cæsar had destroyed the children of
the bravest of the Romans, who had been unfortunate, and had
completely ruined his family, and it was not seemly to celebrate a
triumph over the calamities of his country, exulting in these things,
for which the only apology both before gods and men was that they had
been done of necessity; and that too when he had never before sent
either messenger or public letters to announce a victory gained in the
civil wars, but had from motives of delicacy rejected all glory on
that account.

LVII. However, the Romans, gave way before the fortune of the man and
received the bit, and considering the monarchy to be a respite from
the civil wars and miseries they appointed him dictator[578] for life.
This was confessedly a tyranny, for the monarchy received in addition
to its irresponsibility the character of permanency; and when
Cicero[579] in the Senate had proposed the highest honours[580] to
him, which though great were still such as were befitting a human
being, others by adding still further honours and vying with one
another made Cæsar odious and an object of dislike even to those who
were of the most moderate temper, by reason of the extravagant and
unusual character of what was decreed; and it is supposed that those
who hated Cæsar cooperated in these measures no less than those who
were his flatterers, that they might have as many pretexts as possible
against him and might be considered to make their attempt upon him
with the best ground of complaint. For in all other respects, after
the close of the civil wars, he showed himself blameless; and it was
not without good reason that the Romans voted a temple to Clemency to
commemorate his moderate measures. For he pardoned many of those who
had fought against him, and to some he even gave offices and honours,
as to Brutus and Cassius, both of whom were Prætors. He also did not
allow the statues of Pompeius to remain thrown down, but he set them
up again, on which Cicero said that by erecting the statues of
Pompeius, Cæsar had firmly fixed his own. When his friends urged him
to have guards and many offered their services for this purpose, he
would not consent, and he said, that it was better to die at once than
to be always expecting death. But for the purpose of surrounding
himself with the affection of the Romans as the noblest and also the
securest protection, he again courted the people with banquets and
distribution of corn, and the soldiers with the foundation of
colonies, of which the most conspicuous were Carthage[581] and
Corinth, to both of which it happened that their former capture and
their present restoration occurred at once and at the same time.

LVIII. To some of the nobles he promised consulships and prætorships
for the future, and others he pacified with certain other offices and
honours, and he gave hopes to all, seeking to make it appear that he
ruled over them with their own consent, so that when Maximus[582] the
consul died, he appointed Caninius Revilius consul for the one day
that still remained of the term of office. When many persons were
going, as was usual, to salute the new consul and to form part of his
train Cicero said, "We must make haste, or the man will have gone out
of office." Cæsar's great success did not divert his natural
inclination for great deeds and his ambition to the enjoyment of that
for which he had laboured, but serving as fuel and incentives to the
future bred in him designs of greater things and love of new glory, as
if he had used up what he had already acquired; and the passion was
nothing else than emulation of himself as if he were another person,
and a kind of rivalry between what he intended and what he had
accomplished; and his propositions and designs were to march against
the Parthians,[583] and after subduing them and marching through
Hyrkania and along the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus, and so
encompassing the Euxine, to invade Scythia, and after having overrun
the countries bordering on the Germans and Germany itself to return
through Gaul to Italy, and so to complete his circle of the empire
which would be bounded on all sides by the ocean. During this
expedition he intended also to dig through the Corinthian
Isthmus,[584] and he had already commissioned Anienus to superintend
the work; and to receive the Tiber[585] immediately below the city in
a deep cut, and giving it a bend towards Circæum to make it enter the
sea by Tarracina, with the view of giving security and facility to
those who came to Rome for the purpose of trade: besides this he
designed to draw off the water from the marshes about Pomentium and
Setia,[586] and to make them solid ground, which would employ many
thousands of men in the cultivation; and where the sea was nearest to
Rome he designed to place barriers to it by means of moles, and after
clearing away the hidden rocks and dangerous places on the shore of
Ostia[587] to make harbours and naval stations which should give
security to the extensive shipping. And all these things were in

LIX. But the arrangement of the Kalendar[588] and the correction of
the irregularity in the reckoning of time were handled by him
skilfully, and being completed were of the most varied utility. For it
was not only in very ancient times that the Romans had the periods of
the moon in confusion with respect to the year, so that the feasts and
festivals gradually changing at last fell out in opposite seasons of
the year, but even with respect to the solar year at that time nobody
kept any reckoning except the priests, who, as they alone knew the
proper time, all of a sudden and when nobody expected it, would insert
the intercalary month named Mercedonius, which King Numa is said to
have been the first to intercalate, thereby devising a remedy, which
was slight and would extend to no great period, for the irregularity
in the recurrence of the times, as I have explained in the Life of
Numa. But Cæsar laying the problem before the ablest philosophers and
mathematicians, from the methods that were laid before him compounded
a correction of his own which was more exact, which the Romans use to
the present time, and are considered to be in less error than other
nations as to the inequality. However, even this furnished matter for
complaint to those who envied him and disliked his power; for Cicero,
the orator, as it is said, when some observed that Lyra would rise
to-morrow, "Yes," he replied, "pursuant to the Edict," meaning that
men admitted even this by compulsion.

LX. But the most manifest and deadly hatred towards him was produced
by his desire of kingly power, which to the many was the first, and to
those who had long nourished a secret hatred of him the most specious,
cause. And indeed those who were contriving this honour for Cæsar
spread about a certain report among the people, that according to the
Sibylline writings[589] it appeared that Parthia could be conquered by
the Romans if they advanced against it with a king, but otherwise
could not he assailed. And as Cæsar was going down from Alba to the
city, they ventured to salute him as King, but as the people showed
their dissatisfaction, Cæsar was disturbed and said that he was not
called King but Cæsar; and as hereupon there was a general silence, he
passed along with no great cheerfulness nor good humour on his
countenance. When some extravagant honours had been decreed to him in
the Senate, it happened that he was sitting above the Rostra,[590] and
when the consuls and prætors approached with all the Senate behind
them, without rising from his seat, but just as if he were transacting
business with private persons, he answered that the honours required
rather to be contracted than enlarged. This annoyed not the Senate
only, but the people also, who considered that the State was insulted
in the persons of the Senate; and those who were not obliged to stay
went away forthwith with countenance greatly downcast, so that Cæsar
perceiving it forthwith went home, and as he threw his cloak from his
shoulders he called out to his friends, that he was ready to offer his
throat to anyone who wished to kill him; but afterwards he alleged his
disease as an excuse for his behaviour, saying that persons who are so
affected cannot usually keep their senses steady when they address a
multitude standing, but that the senses being speedily convulsed and
whirling about bring on giddiness and are overpowered. However, the
fact was not so, for it is said that he was very desirous to rise up
when the Senate came, but was checked by one of his friends, or rather
one of his flatterers, Cornelius Balbus,[591] who said, "Will you not
remember that you are Cæsar, and will you not allow yourself to be
honoured as a superior?"

LXI. There was added to these causes of offence the insult offered to
the tribunes. It was the festival of the Lupercalia,[592] about which
many writers say that it was originally a festival of the shepherds
and had also some relationship to the Arcadian Lykæa. On this occasion
many of the young nobles and magistrates run through the city without
their toga, and for sport and to make laughter strike those whom they
meet with strips of hide that have the hair on; many women of rank
also purposely put themselves in the way and present their hands to be
struck like children at school, being persuaded that this is
favourable to easy parturition for those who are pregnant, and to
conception for those who are barren. Cæsar was a spectator, being
seated at the Rostra on a golden chair in a triumphal robe; and
Antonius was one of those who ran in the sacred race, for he was
consul. Accordingly, when he entered the Forum and the crowd made way
for him, he presented to Cæsar a diadem[593] which he carried
surrounded with a crown of bay; and there was a clapping of hands,
not loud, but slight, which had been already concerted. When Cæsar put
away the diadem from him all the people clapped their hands, and when
Antonius presented it again, only a few clapped; but when Cæsar
declined to receive it, again all the people applauded. The experiment
having thus failed, Cæsar rose and ordered the crown to be carried to
the Capitol. But as Cæsar's statues were seen crowned with royal
diadems, two of the tribunes, Flavius and Marullus, went up to them
and pulled off the diadems, and having discovered those who had been
the first to salute Cæsar as king they led them off to prison. The
people followed clapping their hands and calling the tribunes Bruti,
because it was Brutus who put down the kingly power and placed the
sovereignty in the Senate and people instead of its being in the hands
of one man. Cæsar being irritated at this deprived Flavius and
Marullus of their office, and while rating them he also insulted the
people by frequently calling the tribunes Bruti and Cumæi.[594] LXII.
In this state of affairs the many turned to Marcus Brutus,[595] who on
his father's side was considered to be a descendant of the ancient
Brutus, and on his mother's side belonged to the Servilii, another
distinguished house, and he was the son-in-law and nephew of Cato. The
honours and favours which Brutus had received from Cæsar dulled him
towards attempting of his own proper motion the overthrow of the
monarchical power; for not only was his life saved at the battle of
Pharsalus after the rout of Pompeius, and many of his friends also at
his entreaty, but besides this he had great credit with Cæsar. He had
also received among those who then held the prætorship[596] the chief
office, and he was to be consul in the fourth year from that time,
having been preferred to Cassius who was a rival candidate. For it is
said that Cæsar observed that Cassius urged better grounds of
preference, but that he could not pass over Brutus. And on one
occasion when some persons were calumniating Brutus to him, at a time
when the conspiracy was really forming, he would not listen to them,
but touching his body with his hand he said to the accusers, "Brutus
waits[597] for this dry skin," by which he intended to signify that
Brutus was worthy of the power for his merits, but for the sake of the
power would not be ungrateful and a villain. Now, those who were eager
for the change and who looked up to him alone, or him as the chief
person, did not venture to speak with him on the subject, but by night
they used to fill the tribunal and the seat on which he sat when
discharging his functions as prætor with writings, most of which were
to this purport, "You are asleep, Brutus," and "You are not Brutus."
By which Cassius,[598] perceiving that his ambition was somewhat
stirred, urged him more than he had done before, and pricked him on;
and Cassius himself had also a private grudge against Cæsar for the
reasons which I have mentioned in the Life of Brutus. Indeed Cæsar
suspected Cassius, and he once said to his friends, "What think ye is
Cassius aiming at? for my part, I like him not over much, for he is
over pale." On the other hand it is said that when a rumour reached
him, that Antonius and Dolabella were plotting, he said, "I am not
much afraid of these well-fed,[599] long-haired fellows, but I rather
fear those others, the pale and thin," meaning Cassius and Brutus.

LXIII. But it appears that destiny is not so much a thing that gives
no warning as a thing that cannot be avoided, for they say that
wondrous signs and appearances presented themselves. Now, as to lights
in the skies and sounds by night moving in various directions and
solitary birds descending into the Forum, it is perhaps not worth
while recording these with reference to so important an event: but
Strabo[600] the Philosopher relates that many men all of fire were
seen contending against one another, and that a soldier's slave
emitted a great flame from his hand and appeared to the spectators to
be burning, but when the flame went out, the man had sustained no
harm; and while Cæsar himself was sacrificing the heart of the victim
could not be found, and this was considered a bad omen, for naturally
an animal without a heart cannot exist. The following stories also are
told by many; that a certain seer warned him to be on his guard
against great danger on that day of the month of March, which the
Romans call the Ides;[601] and when the day had arrived, as Cæsar was
going to the Senate-house, he saluted the seer and jeered him saying,
"Well, the Ides of March are come;" but the seer mildly replied, "Yes,
they are come, but they are not yet over." The day before, when Marcus
Lepidus was entertaining him, he chanced to be signing some letters,
according to his habit, while he was reclining at table; and the
conversation having turned on what kind of death was the best, before
any one could give an opinion he called out, "That which is
unexpected!" After this, while he was sleeping, as he was accustomed
to do, by the side of his wife, all the doors and windows in the house
flew open at once, and being startled by the noise and the brightness
of the moon which was shining down upon him, he observed that
Calpurnia[602] was in a deep slumber, but was uttering indistinct
words and inarticulate groans in the midst of her sleep; and indeed
she was dreaming that she held her murdered husband in her arms and
was weeping over him. Others say this was not the vision that
Calpurnia had, but the following: there was attached to Cæsar's house
by way of ornament and distinction pursuant to a vote of the Senate an
acroterium,[603] as Livius says, and Calpurnia in her dream seeing
this tumbling down lamented and wept. When day came accordingly she
entreated Cæsar, if it were possible, not to go out, and to put off
the meeting of the Senate; but if he paid no regard to her dreams, she
urged him to inquire by other modes of divination and by sacrifices
about the future. Cæsar also, as it seems, had some suspicion and
fear; for he had never before detected in Calpurnia any womanish
superstition, and now he saw that she was much disturbed. And when the
seers also after sacrificing many victims reported to him that the
omens were unfavourable, he determined to send Antonius to dismiss the

LXIV. In the mean time Decimus Brutus,[604] surnamed Albinus, who was
in such favour with Cæsar that he was made in his will his second
heir,[605] but was engaged in the conspiracy with the other Brutus and
Cassius, being afraid that if Cæsar escaped that day, the affair might
become known, ridiculed the seers and chided Cæsar for giving cause
for blame and censure to the Senate who would consider themselves
insulted: he said, "That the Senate had met at his bidding and that
they were all ready to pass a decree, that he should be proclaimed
King of the provinces out of Italy and should wear a diadem whenever
he visited the rest of the earth and sea; but if any one shall tell
them when they are taking their seats, to be gone now and to come
again, when Calpurnia shall have had better dreams, what may we not
expect to be said by those who envy you? or who will listen to your
friends when they say that this is not slavery and tyranny; but if,"
he continued, "you are fully resolved to consider the day
inauspicious, it is better for you to go yourself and address the
Senate and then to adjourn the business." As he said this, Brutus took
Cæsar by the hand and began to lead him forth: and he had gone but a
little way from the door, when a slave belonging to another person,
who was eager to get at Cæsar but was prevented by the press and
numbers about him, rushing into the house delivered himself up to
Calpurnia and told her to keep him till Cæsar returned, for he had
important things to communicate to him.

LXV. Artemidorus,[606] a Knidian by birth, and a professor of Greek
philosophy, which had brought him into the familiarity of some of
those who belonged to the party of Brutus, so that he knew the greater
part of what was going on, came and brought in a small roll the
information which he intended to communicate; but observing that Cæsar
gave each roll as he received it to the attendants about him, he came
very near, and said, "This you alone should read, Cæsar, and read it
soon; for it is about weighty matters which concern you." Accordingly
Cæsar received the roll, but he was prevented from reading it by the
number of people who came in his way, though he made several attempts,
and he entered the Senate holding that roll in his hand and retaining
that alone among all that had been presented to him. Some say that it
was another person who gave him this roll, and that Artemidorus did
not even approach him, but was kept from him all the way by the
pressure of the crowd.

LXVI. Now these things perchance may be brought about by mere
spontaneity; but the spot that was the scene of that murder and
struggle, wherein the Senate was then assembled, which contained the
statue of Pompeius[607] and was a dedication by Pompeius and one of
the ornaments that he added to his theatre, completely proved that it
was the work of some dæmon to guide and call the execution of the deed
to that place. It is said also that Cassius[608] looked towards the
statue of Pompeius before the deed was begun and silently invoked it,
though he was not averse to the philosophy of Epikurus; but the
critical moment for the bold attempt which was now come probably
produced in him enthusiasm and feeling in place of his former
principles. Now Antonius,[609] who was faithful to Cæsar and a robust
man, was kept on the outside by Brutus Albinus, who purposely engaged
him in a long conversation. When Cæsar entered, the Senate rose to do
him honour, and some of the party of Brutus stood around his chair at
the back, and others presented themselves before him, as if their
purpose was to support the prayer of Tillius Cimber[610] on behalf of
his exiled brother, and they all joined in entreaty, following Cæsar
as far as his seat. When he had taken his seat and was rejecting their
entreaties, and, as they urged them still more strongly, began to show
displeasure towards them individually, Tillius taking hold of his toga
with both his hands pulled it downwards from the neck, which was the
signal for the attack. Casca[611] was the first to strike him on the
neck with his sword, a blow neither mortal nor severe, for as was
natural at the beginning of so bold a deed he was confused, and Cæsar
turning round seized the dagger and held it fast. And it happened that
at the same moment he who was struck cried out in the Roman language,
"You villain, Casca, what are you doing?" and he who had given the
blow cried out to his brother in Greek, "Brother, help." Such being
the beginning, those who were not privy to the conspiracy were
prevented by consternation and horror at what was going on either from
flying or going to aid, and they did not even venture to utter a word.
And now each of the conspirators bared his sword, and Cæsar, being
hemmed in all round, in whatever direction he turned meeting blows and
swords aimed against his eyes and face, driven about like a wild
beast, was caught in the hands of his enemies; for it was arranged
that all of them should take a part in and taste of the deed of blood.
Accordingly Brutus[612] also gave him one blow in the groin. It is
said by some authorities, that he defended himself against the rest,
moving about his body hither and thither and calling out, till he saw
that Brutus had drawn his sword, when he pulled his toga over his face
and offered no further resistance, having been driven either by chance
or by the conspirators to the base on which the statue of Pompeius
stood. And the base was drenched with blood, as if Pompeius was
directing the vengeance upon his enemy who was stretched beneath his
feet and writhing under his many wounds; for he is said to have
received three and twenty wounds. Many of the conspirators were
wounded by one another, while they were aiming so many blows against
one body.

LXVII. After Cæsar was killed, though Brutus came forward as if he was
going to say something about the deed, the Senators,[613] without
waiting to listen, rushed through the door and making their escape
filled the people with confusion and indescribable alarm, so that some
closed their houses, and others left their tables and places of
business, and while some ran to the place to see what had happened,
others who had seen it ran away. But Antonius and Lepidus,[614] who
were the chief friends of Cæsar, stole away and fled for refuge to
the houses of other persons. The partizans of Brutus, just as they
were, warm from the slaughter, and showing their bare swords, advanced
all in a body from the Senate-house to the Capitol, not like men who
were flying, but exultant and confident, calling the people to liberty
and joined by the nobles who met them. Some even went up to the
Capitol with them and mingled with them as if they had participated in
the deed, and claimed the credit of it, among whom were Caius Octavius
and Lentulus Spinther.[615] But they afterwards paid the penalty of
their vanity, for they were put to death by Antonius and the young
Cæsar, without having enjoyed even the reputation of that for which
they lost their lives, for nobody believed that they had a share in
the deed. For neither did those who put them to death, punish them for
what they did, but for what they wished to do. On the next day Brutus
came down and addressed the people, who listened without expressing
disapprobation or approbation of what had been done, but they
indicated by their deep silence that they pitied Cæsar and respected
Brutus. The Senate, with the view of making an amnesty and
conciliating all parties, decreed that Cæsar should be honoured as a
god and that not the smallest thing should be disturbed which he had
settled while he was in power; and they distributed among the
partisans of Brutus provinces and suitable honours, so that all people
supposed that affairs were quieted and had been settled in the best

LXVIII. But when the will[616] of Cæsar was opened and it was
discovered that he had given to every Roman a handsome present, and
they saw the body, as it was carried through the Forum, disfigured
with the wounds, the multitude, no longer kept within the bounds of
propriety and order, but heaping about the corpse benches, lattices
and tables taken from the Forum, they set fire to it on the spot and
burnt it; then taking the flaming pieces of wood they ran to the
houses of the conspirators to fire them, and others ran about the city
in all directions seeking for the men to seize and tear them in
pieces. But none of the conspirators came in their way, and they were
all well protected. One Cinna,[617] however, a friend of Cæsar,
happened, as it is said, to have had a strange dream the night
before; for he dreamed that he was invited by Cæsar to sup with him,
and when he excused himself, he was dragged along by Cæsar by the
hand, against his will and making resistance the while. Now, when he
heard that the body of Cæsar was burning in the Forum, he got up and
went there out of respect, though he was somewhat alarmed at his dream
and had a fever on him. One of the multitude who saw Cinna told his
name to another who was inquiring of him, and he again told it to a
third, and immediately it spread through the crowd that this man was
one of those who had killed Cæsar; and indeed there was one of the
conspirators who was named Cinna: and taking this man to be him the
people forthwith rushed upon him and tore him in pieces on the spot.
It was principally through alarm at this that the partisans of Brutus
and Cassius after a few days left the city. But what they did and
suffered before they died is told in the Life of Brutus.[618] LXIX. At
the time of his death Cæsar was full fifty-six years old, having
survived Pompeius not much more than four years, and of the power and
dominion which all through his life he pursued at so great risk and
barely got at last, having reaped the fruit in name only, and with the
glory of it the odium of the citizens. Yet his great dæmon,[619] which
accompanied him through life, followed him even when he was dead, the
avenger of his murder, through every land and sea hunting and tracking
out his murderers till not one of them was left, and pursuing even
those who in any way whatever had either put their hand to the deed or
been participators in the plot. Among human events the strangest was
that which befell Cassius, for after his defeat at Philippi he killed
himself with the same dagger that he had employed against Cæsar; and
among signs from heaven, there was the great comet, which appeared
conspicuous for seven nights after Cæsar's assassination and then
disappeared, and the obscuration of the splendour of the sun. For
during all that year the circle of the sun rose pale and without rays,
and the warmth that came down from it was weak and feeble, so that the
air as it moved was dark and heavy owing to the feebleness of the
warmth which penetrated it, and the fruits withered and fell off when
they were half ripened and imperfect on account of the coldness of the
atmosphere. But chief of all, the phantom that appeared to Brutus
showed that Cæsar's murder was not pleasing to the gods; and it was
after this manner. When Brutus was going to take his army over from
Abydus[620] to the other continent, he was lying down by night, as his
wont was, in his tent, not asleep, but thinking about the future; for
it is said that Brutus of all generals was least given to sleep, and
had naturally the power of keeping awake longer than any other person.
Thinking that he heard a noise near the door, he looked towards the
light of the lamp which was already sinking down, and saw a frightful
vision of a man of unusual size and savage countenance. At first he
was startled, but observing that the figure neither moved nor spoke,
but was standing silent by the bed, he asked him who he was. The
phantom replied, "Thy bad dæmon, Brutus; and thou shalt see me at
Philippi." Upon which Brutus boldly replied, "I shall see;" and the
dæmon immediately disappeared. In course of time having engaged with
Antonius and Cæsar at Philippi, in the first battle he was victorious,
and after routing that part of the army which was opposed to him he
followed up his success and plundered Cæsar's camp. As he was
preparing to fight the second battle, the same phantom appeared again
by night, without speaking to him, but Brutus, who perceived what his
fate was, threw himself headlong into the midst of the danger. However
he did not fall in the battle, but when the rout took place, he fled
to a precipitous spot, and throwing himself with his breast on his
bare sword, a friend also, as it is said, giving strength to the blow,
he died.[621] FOOTNOTES:

[Footnote 435: It has been remarked by Niebuhr (_Lectures on the
History of Rome_, ii. 33) that the beginning of the Life of Cæsar is
lost. He says, "Plutarch could not have passed over the ancestors, the
father, and the whole family, together with the history of Cæsar's
youth, &c." But the reasons for this opinion are not conclusive. The
same reason would make us consider other lives imperfect, which are
also deficient in such matters. Plutarch, after his fashion, gives
incidental information about Cæsar's youth and his family. I conceive
that he purposely avoided a formal beginning; and according to his
plan of biography, he was right. Niebuhr also observes that the
beginning of the Life of Cæsar in Suetonius is imperfect; "a fact well
known, but it is only since the year 1812, that we know that the part
which is wanting contained a dedication to the præfectus prætorio of
the time, a fact which has not yet found its way into any history of
Roman Literature." It is an old opinion that the Life of Cæsar in
Suetonius is imperfect. The fact that the dedication alone is wanting,
for so Niebuhr appears to mean, shows that the Life is not incomplete,
and there is no reason for thinking that it is.

C. Julius Cæsar, the son of C. Julius Cæsar and Aurelia, was born on
the twelfth of July, B.C. 100, in the sixth consulship of his uncle C.
Marius. His father, who had been prætor, died suddenly at Pisa when
his son was in his sixteenth year.]

[Footnote 436: See the Life of Pompeius, c. 9, and notes.]

[Footnote 437: Cæsar was first betrothed to Cossutia, the daughter of
a rich Roman Eques, but he broke off the marriage contract, and
married Cornelia, B.C. 83.]

[Footnote 438: A different story is told by Suetonius (_Cæsar_, c. 1),
and Velleius Paterculus (ii. 43).]

[Footnote 439: Cornelius Phagita (Suetonius, c. 1, 74.) The words of
Sulla are also reported by Suetonius (c. 1).]

[Footnote 440: Nicomedes III. Cæsar was sent to him by Thermus to get
ships for the siege of Mitylene. Suetonius, a lover of scandal, has
preserved a grievous imputation against Cæsar, which is connected with
this visit to Nicomedes (_Cæsar_, c. 2, 49). Cæsar in a speech for the
Bithynians (Gellius, v. 13) calls Nicomedes his friend. He felt the
reproach keenly, and tried to clear himself (Dion Cassius, 43, c. 20).
But it is easier to make such charges than to confute them.

M. Minucius Thermus, Proprætor. Cæsar served his first campaign under
him at the siege and capture of Mitylene B.C. 80. Cæsar gained a civic
crown. See the note in Burmaun's edition of Suetonius.]

[Footnote 441: This island was near Miletus. Stephan. Byzant., [Greek:
Pharmakoussa] Φαρμακοῦσσα.]

[Footnote 442: See the Life of Pompeius, c. 26. Cæsar served a short
time against the Cilician pirates under P. Servilius Isauricus
(Sueton. _Cæsar_, 2) B.C. 77, or perhaps later.]

[Footnote 443: He was now in Bithynia according to Vell. Paterculus
(ii. 42). This affair of the pirates happened according to Drumann in
B.C. 76. Plutarch places it five years earlier.]

[Footnote 444: Plutarch should probably have called him only Molo. He
was a native of Alabanda in Caria. Cicero often mentions his old
master, but always by the name of Molo only. He calls the rhetorician,
who was the master of Q. Mucius Scævola, consul B.C. 117. Apollonius,
who was also a native of Alabanda.]

[Footnote 445: See c. 54.]

[Footnote 446: See the first chapter of the Life of Lucullus.]

[Footnote 447: Cn. Cornelius Dolabella, consul B.C. 81, afterwards was
governor of Macedonia as proconsul, in which office he was charged
with maladministration. Cicero (_Brutus_, c. 71, 92) mentions this
trial. Drumann places it in B.C. 77. Cicero (_Brutus_, c. 72) gives
his opinion of the eloquence of Cæsar. (Suetonius, _Cæsar_, 4; Vell.
Paterculus, ii. 42.)]

[Footnote 448: His name was Caius. He was consul B.C. 63 with Cicero.
The trial, which was in B.C. 76, of course related to misconduct prior
to that date. The trial was not held in Greece. M. Lucullus was the
brother of L. Lucullus, and was Prætor in Rome at the time of the

[Footnote 449: Some amplification is necessary here in order to
preserve Plutarch's metaphor. He was fond of such poetical turns.

    Nec poterat quemquam placidi pellacia ponti
    Subdola pellicere in fraudem ridentibus undis.

_Lucretius_, v. 1002.]

[Footnote 450: See the Life of Pompeius, c. 48.]

[Footnote 451: The military tribunes, it appears, were now elected by
the people, or part of them at least. Comp. Liv. 43, c. 14.]

[Footnote 452: His aunt Julia and his wife Cornelia died during his
quæstorship, probably B.C. 68.]

[Footnote 453: The Roman word is Imagines. There is a curious passage
about the Roman Imagines in Polybius (vi. 53, ed. Bekker)--"Viginti
clarissimarum familiarum imagines antelatæ sunt." Tacit. _Annal._ iii.

[Footnote 454: The origin of this custom with respect to women is told
by Livius (5. c. 50). It was introduced after the capture of the city
by the Gauls, as a reward to the women for contributing to the ransom
demanded by the enemy.]

[Footnote 455: Antistius Vetus (Vell. Paterculus, ii. 18) was Prætor
of the division of Iberia which was called Bætica. His son C.
Antistius Veius was Quæstor B.C. 61 under Cæsar in Iberia.]

[Footnote 456: She was a daughter of Q. Pompeius Rufus, the son-in-law
of Sulla, who lost his life B.C. 88, during the consulship of his
father. See the Life of Sulla, c. 6 notes. The daughter who is here
mentioned was Julia, Cæsar's only child.]

[Footnote 457: This was the road from Rome to Capua, which was begun
by the Censor Appius Claudius Cæcus B.C. 312, and afterwards continued
to Brundisium. It commenced at Rome and ran in nearly a direct line to
Terracina across the Pomptine marshes.

The appointment as commissioner (curator) for repairing and making
roads was an office of honour, and one that gave a man the opportunity
of gaining popular favour.]

[Footnote 458: Cæsar was Curule Ædile B.C. 65.]

[Footnote 459: Q. Metellus Pius, Consul B.C. 80. Cæsar's competitors
were P. Servilius Isauricus, consul B.C. 79, under whom Cæsar had
fought against the pirates, and Q. Lutatius Catulus, consul B.C. 78,
the son of the Catulus whom Marius put to death. Cæsar was already a
Pontifex, but the acquisition of the post of Pontifex Maximus, which
places him at the head of religion, was an object of ambition to him
in his present position. The office was for life, it brought him an
official residence in the Via Sacra, and increased political

[Footnote 460: The conspiracy of Catiline happened B.C. 63, when
Cicero was consul. See the Life of Cicero, c. 10, &c. Sallustius
(_Catilina_, c. 51, &c.) has given the speeches of Cæsar and Cato in
the debate upon the fate of the conspirators who had been seized. If
we have not the words of Cæsar, there is no reason for supposing that
we have not the substance of his speech. Whatever might be Cæsar's
object, his proposal was consistent with law and a fair trial. The
execution of the conspirators was a violent and illegal measure.]

[Footnote 461: This circumstance is mentioned by Sallustius
(_Catilina_, 49), apparently as having happened when Cæsar was leaving
the Senate, after one of the debates previous to that on which it was
determined to put the conspirators to death. Sallustius mentions
Catulus and C. Piso as the instigators. He also observes that they had
tried to prevail on Cicero to criminate Cæsar by false testimony. (See
Drumann, _Tullii_, § 40, p. 531.)]

[Footnote 462: C. Scribonius Curio, consul B.C. 76, father of the
Curio mentioned in the Life of Pompeius, c. 58, who was a tribune B.C.

[Footnote 463: Cicero wrote his book on his Consulship B.C. 60, in
which year Cæsar was elected consul, and it was published at that
time. Cæsar was then rising in power, and Cicero was humbled. It would
be as well for him to say nothing on this matter which Plutarch
alludes to (_Ad Attic._ ii. 1).

Cicero wrote first a prose work on his consulship in Greek (_Ad
Attic._ i. 19), and also a poem in three books in Latin hexameters
(_Ad Attic._ ii. 3).]

[Footnote 464: Attic drachmæ, as usual with Plutarch, when he omits
the denomination of the money. In his Life of Cato (c. 26) Plutarch
estimates the sum at 1250 talents. This impolitic measure of Cato
tended to increase an evil that had long been growing in Rome, the
existence of a large body of poor who looked to the public treasury
for part of their maintenance. (See the note on the Life of Caius
Gracchus, c. 5.)]

[Footnote 465: Cæsar was Prætor B.C. 62. He was Prætor designatus in
December B.C. 63, when he delivered his speech on the punishment of
Catiline's associates.]

[Footnote 466: Some notice of this man is contained in the Life of
Lucullus, c. 34, 38, and the Life of Cicero, c. 29. The affair of the
Bona Dea, which made a great noise in Rome, is told very fully in
Cicero's letters to Atticus (i. 12, &c.), which were written at the

The feast of the Bona Dea was celebrated on the first of May, in the
house of the Consul or of the Prætor Urbanus. There is some further
information about it in Plutarch's Romanæ Quæstiones (ed. Wyttenbach,
vol. ii.). According to Cicero (_De Haruspicum Responsis_, c. 17), the
real name of the goddess was unknown to the men; and Dacier considers
it much to the credit of the Roman ladies that they kept the secret so
well. For this ingenious remark I am indebted to Kaltwasser's citation
of Dacier; I have not had curiosity enough to look at Dacier's notes.]

[Footnote 467: The divorce of Pompeia is mentioned by Cicero (_Ad
Attic._ i. 13).]

[Footnote 468: Clodius was tried B.C. 61, and acquitted by a corrupt
jury (judices). (See Cicero, _Ad Attic._ i. 16.) Kaltwasser appears to
me to have mistaken this passage. The judices voted by ballot, which
had been the practice in Rome in such trials since the passing of the
Lex Cassia B.C. 137. Drumanu remarks (_Geschichte Roms_, Claudii, p.
214, note) that Plutarch has confounded the various parts of the
procedure at the trial; and it may be so. See the Life of Cicero, c.
29. There is a dispute as to the meaning of the term Judicia Populi,
to which kind of Judicia the Lex Cassia applied. (Orelli,
_Onomasticon_, Index Legum, p. 279.)]

[Footnote 469: Cæsar was Prætor (B.C. 60) of Hispania Ulterior or
Bætica, which included Lusitania.]

[Footnote 470: A similar story is told by Suetonius (_Cæsar_, 7) and
Dion Cassius (37. c. 52), but they assign it to the time of Cæsar's
quæstorship in Spain.]

[Footnote 471: The Calaici, or Callaici, or Gallæci, occupied that
part of the Spanish peninsula which extended from the Douro north and
north-west to the Atlantic. (Strabo, p. 152.) The name still exists in
the modern term Gallica. D. Junius Brutus, consul B.C. 138, and the
grandfather of one of Cæsar's murderers, triumphed over the Callaici
and Lusitani, and obtained the name Callaicus. The transactions of
Cæsar in Lusitania are recorded by Dion Cassius (37. c. 52).]

[Footnote 472: Many of the creditors were probably Romans. (Velleius
Pat. ii 43, and the Life of Lucullus, c. 7.)]

[Footnote 473: Cæsar was consul B.C. 59.]

[Footnote 474: The measure was for the distribution of Public land
(Dion Cassius, 38. c. 1, &c. &c.) and it was an Agrarian Law. The law
comprehended also the land about Capua (Campanus ager). Twenty
thousand Roman citizens were settled on the allotted lands (Vell.
Pater, ii. 44; Appianus, _Civil Wars_, ii. 10). Cicero, who was
writing to Atticus at the time, mentions this division of the lands as
an impolitic measure. It left the Romans without any source of public
income in Italy except the Vicesimæ (_Ad Attic._ ii. 16, 18).

The Romans, who were fond of jokes and pasquinades against those who
were in power, used to call the consulship of Cæsar, the consulship of
Caius Cæsar and Julius Cæsar, in allusion to the inactivity of
Bibulus, who could not resist his bolder colleague's measures. (Dion
Cassius, 38. c. 8.)]

[Footnote 475: The marriage with Pompeius took place in Cæsar's
consulship. _Life of Crassus_, c. 16.

This Servilius Cæpio appears to be Q. Servilius Cæpio, the brother of
Servilia, the mother of M. Junius Brutus, one of Cæsar's assassins.
Servilius Cæpio adopted Brutus, who is accordingly sometimes called Q.
Cæpio Brutus. (Cicero, _Ad Divers._ vii. 21; _Ad Attic._ ii. 24.) Piso
was L. Calpurnius Piso, who with Aulus Gabinius was consul B.C. 58.]

[Footnote 476: Q. Considius Gallus. He is mentioned by Cicero several
times in honourable terms (_Ad Attic._ ii. 24).]

[Footnote 477: Cicero went into exile B.C. 58. See the Life of Cicero,
c. 30.

Dion Cassius (38. c. 17) states that Cæsar was outside of the city
with his army, ready to march to his province, at the time when
Clodius proposed the bill of penalties against him. Cicero says the
same (_Pro Sestio_, c. 18). Cæsar, according to Dion, was not in
favour of the penalties contained in the bill; but he probably did not
exert himself to save Cicero. Pompeius, who had presided at the
comitia in which Clodius was adrogated into a Plebeian family, in
order to qualify him to be a tribune, treated Cicero with neglect
(Life of Pompeius, c. 46). Cæsar owed Cicero nothing. Pompeius owed
him much. And Cicero deserved his punishment.]

[Footnote 478: Cæsar's Gallic campaign began B.C. 58.

He carried on the war actively for eight years, till the close of B.C.
51. But he was still proconsul of Gallia in the year B.C. 50. Plutarch
has not attempted a regular narrative of Cæsar's campaigns, which
would have been foreign to his purpose (see the Life of Alexander, c.
1); nor can it be attempted in these notes. The great commander has
left in his Commentary on the Gallic War an imperishable record of his
subjugation of Gaul.]

[Footnote 479: Plutarch here, after his fashion, throws in a few
anecdotes without any regard to the chronological order.]

[Footnote 480: Massalia, an ancient Greek settlement, now Marseilles,
was called Massilia by the Romans. The siege of Massalia is told by
Cæsar (_Civil War_, ii. 1, &c.). It took place after Pompeius had fled
from Brundisium.]

[Footnote 481: The story of Scæva is told by Cæsar (_Civil War_, iii.
53). The missiles were arrows. As to the exact number of arrows that
the brave centurion Scæva received in his shield, see the note in
Oudendorp's Cæsar. Scæva was promoted to the first class of centurions
(Suetonius. _Cæsar_, 68).]

[Footnote 482: Cordoba or Cordova in Hispania Bætica. Cæsar must
therefore have been subject to these attacks during his quæstorship,
or at least his prætorship in Spain.

Of Cæsar's endurance and activity, Suetonius also (_Cæsar_, 57) has
preserved several notices.]

[Footnote 483: Kaltwasser translates this: "He travelled with such
speed that he did not require more than eight days to reach the Rhone
after leaving Rome;" as if this was his habit. But Kaltwasser is

[Footnote 484: See the Life of Pompeius, c. 10.

In the time of Gellius (xvii. 9) there was extant a collection of
Cæsar's letters to C. Oppius and Cornelius Balbus, written in a kind
of cipher. (See Suetonius, _Cæsar_, 56.) Two letters of Cæsar to
Oppius and Balbus are extant in the collection of Cicero's letters
(_Ad Atticum_, ix. 8, 16), both expressed with admirable brevity and
clearness. One of them also shows his good sense and his humanity.]

[Footnote 485: The story is also told by Suetonius (_Cæsar_, 54).
Instead of using plain oil, Leo thought he should please his guests by
mixing it with a fragrant oil (conditum oleum pro viridi). He was an
ill-bred fellow for his pains; but a well-bred man would affect not to
notice his blunder.]

[Footnote 486: This campaign belongs to B.C. 58. The Helvetii occupied
the country between the Rhine, the Jura, the Rhone, and the Rhætian
Alps. The history of the campaign is given by Cæsar (_Gallic War_, i.
2-29; Dion Cassius, 38, c.