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Marcus Brutus   


to the Samians: "Your counsels are remiss and your performances
slow; what think ye will be the end?" And of the Patareans thus:
"The Xanthians, suspecting my kindness, have made their country the
grave of their despair; the Patareans, trusting themselves to me,
enjoy in all points their former liberty; it is in your power to
choose the judgment of the Patareans on the pretence of the
Xanthians." And this is the style for which some of his letters are to
be noted.
When he was but a very young man, he accompanied his uncle Cato to
Cyprus, when he was sent there against Ptolemy. But when Ptolemy
killed himself, Cato, being by some necessary business detained in the
isle of Rhodes, had already sent one of his friends, named Canidius,
to take into his care and keeping the treasure of the king; but
presently, not feeling sure of his honesty, he wrote to Brutus to sail
immediately for Cyprus out of Pamphylia, where he then was staying
to refresh himself, being but just recovered of a fit of sickness.
He obeyed his orders, but with a great deal of unwillingness, as
well out of respect to Canidius, who was thrown out of this employment
by Cato with so much disgrace, as also because he esteemed such a
commission mean and unsuitable to him, who was in the prime of his
youth, and given to books and study. Nevertheless, applying himself to
the business, he behaved himself so well in it that he was highly
commended by Cato, and having turned all the goods of Ptolemy into
ready money, he sailed with the greatest part of it in his own ship to
Rome.
But upon the general separation into two factions, when, Pompey
and Caesar taking up arms against one another, the whole empire was
turned into confusion, it was commonly believed that he would take
Caesar's side; for his father in past time had been put to death by
Pompey. But he, thinking it his duty to prefer the interest of the
public to his own private feelings, and judging Pompey's to be the
better cause, took part with him; though formerly he used not so
much as to salute or take any notice of Pompey, if he happened to meet
him, esteeming it a pollution to have the least conversation with
the murderer of his father. But now, looking upon him as the general
of his country, he placed himself under his command, and set sail
for Cilicia in quality of lieutenant to Sestius, who had the
government of that province. But finding no opportunity there of doing
any great service, and hearing that Pompey and Caesar were now near
one another and preparing for the battle upon which all depended, he
came of his own accord to Macedonia to partake in the danger. At his
coming it is said that Pompey was so surprised and so pleased that,
rising from his chair in the sight of all who were about him, he
saluted and embraced him, as one of the chiefest of his party. All the
time that he was in the camp, excepting that which he spent in
Pompey's company, he employed in reading and in study, which he did
not neglect even the day before the great battle. It was the middle of
summer, and the heat was very great, the camp having been pitched near
some marshy ground, and the people that carried Brutus's tent were a
long while before they came. Yet though upon these accounts he was
extremely harassed and out of order, having scarcely by the middle
of the day anointed himself and eaten a sparing meal, whilst most
others were either laid to sleep or taken up with the thoughts and
apprehensions of what would be the issue of the fight, he spent his
time until the evening in writing an epitome of Polybius.
It is said that Caesar had so great a regard for him that he ordered
his commanders by no means to kill Brutus in the battle, but to
spare him, if possible, and bring him safe to him, if he would
willingly surrender himself; but if he made any resistance, to
suffer him to escape rather than do him any violence. And this he is
believed to have done out of a tenderness to Servilia, the mother of
Brutus; for Caesar had, it seems, in his youth been very intimate with
her, and she passionately in love with him; and, considering that
Brutus was born about that time in which their loves were at the

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