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188 Pompey, Cæfar, and Craffus, the firf Triumvirate. received their mutual concurrence and approbation. This was called the First Triumvirate, by which we find the conftitu. tion weakened by a new interest, that had not hitherto taken place in the government, very different from that of the few nate or the people, and yet dependent on both. A power like this, however, as it depended upon the nice conduct of different interests, could not be of long continuance; and, in fact, was foon after swallowed up in the military power, which destroyed even the shadow of liberty.
Pompey, Cæsar, and Craffus, the first TriumvirateBattle of
Pharsalia.-Death and Charater of Pompey. THE 'HE first thing Cæsar did, upon being taken into the
triumvirate, was to avail himself of the interest of his confederates to obtain the consulship. The senate had still fome small influence left; and though they were obliged to concur in choosing him, yet they gave him for a colleague, one Bibulus who they supposed would be a check upon his power ; but the opposition was too strong even by superior abilities to be resisted; so that Bibulus, after a flight attempt in favour of the senate, remained inactive the succeeding part of the year. Cæsar, however, was by no means fo; but began his schemes for empire, by ingratiating himself with the people.
He next deliberated with his confederates, about sharing the foreign provinces of the empire. The partition was foon made. Pompey made choice of Spain ; for being fatigued with conquest, and satisfied with military fame, he wished to take his pleasures at Rome; and there being no appearance of revolt in his province, he knew it could be easily governed by his-lieutenant. Craffus chose Syria for his part of the empire; which province, as it had hitherto enriched the general, who had subdued it, would, he hoped, gratify him in this his most favourite pursuit. To Cæsar was left the provinces of Gaul, composed of many fierce and powerful nations; most of them unsubdued, and the rest only professing a nominal subjection, Wherefore as it was rather appointing him to conquer than command this government was granted for
five years. These three men, having thus divided the world among themselves, prepared for their respective destinations.
There was an obstacle, however, in Cæfar's way, which seemed to blast his aims, and which he wished to have removed, previous to his setting out. This was Tullius Cicero, who, by his penetration and eloquence, defeated the conspiracy of Catiline, and continued a watchful guardian over the liberties of Rome. This great orator and statesman, or, to give him an higher appellation, this excellent philosopher, had, from a very humble original, raised himself to the foremost rank of the state. He was endowed with all the wisdom and all the virtues that could adorn a man. However, his wisdom, by directing his views over too wide a sphere, often overlooked those advantages which were clearly discerncd by short-sighted cunning; and his virtues by being ap. plauded by others, and receiving his own conscious approbation, tinctured his mind with vanity.
In order to expel this great man from the republic, Cæfar resolved to take into his party Publius Clodius, a man of patrician birth, dissolute manners, great popularity, and an inveterate enemy to Cicero. He was at this time a tribune of the people, although he had been obliged to get himself adopted by a Plebeian, before he could obtain that office. The bopes of revenging himself upon Cicero, in some measure incited him to stand for it; and the concurrence of Cæsar and Pompey with his pretensions, foon assured him of success. He, therefore, publicly began to accuse Cicero, for having put the late confpirators to death ; who being citizens ought to have been adjudged by the people. Cicero, terrified at this accufation, did all that lay in his power to oppose it. He applied to Cæfar to be taken as his lieutenant into Gaul; but Clodius had art enough to divert him from that design, by pretending that his resentment was rather a matter of form than of revenge. Pompey, too, contributed to put him off his guard by a promise of protection; so that the cunning of these men of moderate abilities was more than a match for the wise dom of the philosopher. Clodius, having first caused a law to be enacted, importing, that any man who had condemned a Roman citizen unheard, should himself be banished, soon after impeached Cicero upon it. It was in vain that this master of eloquence went up and down the city, foliciting his cause in the habit of a fuppliant, and attended by many of the first young noblemen whom he had taught the rules of oratory, Those powers of speaking which had been so often successful
190 Pompey, Cesar, and Craffus, the first Triumvirate. in defending the cause of others, seemed totally to forsake him in his own; he was banished, by the votes of the people, four hundred miles from Italy; his houses were ordered to be demolished, and his goods set up to fale. None now remained that could defend the part of the senate but Cato; and he was soon after fent into Cyprus, under pretence of doing him a favour; but, in reality, in order to leave an open theatre for the triumvirate to act in. Cæsar during these intrigues, pretended to be an unconcerned spectator, and to be wholly occupied in his preparations for going into Gaul. He, in fact, left nothing undone, that might advance the speed, or increase the strength of this expedition; wherefore leaving Pompey to guard their mutual interests at home, he marched into his province at the head of four legions, that were granted him by the fenate, and two more that were lent him by his new affociate in the empire.
To enumerate all the battles which Cæfar fought, and the ftates he subdued, in his expeditions into Gaul and Britain, would fill volumes. It will be sufficient just to mention those victories, which a great and experienced general, at the head of a disciplined army, gained over the barbarous and tumultuary, tho' numerous, forces that were led to oppose him. The Helvetians were the first who were brought into subjection, with the loss of near two thousand men. The Germans, with Ariovistus at their head, were next cut off, to the number of eighty thousand; their monarch himself narrowly escaping in a little boat across the Rhine. The Belgæ were destroyed with fuch great Naughter, that marshes and deep rivers were rendered passable by the heaps of slain *. The Nervians, who were the most warlike of those barbarous nations, made head for a short time, and fell upon the Romans with such fury, that their army was in danger of being utterly routed; but Cæfar hastily catching up a buckler rushed through his army into the midst of the enemy; by which means the face of affairs was so effectually changed, that the barbarians were all cut off to a man. The Celtic Gauls, who were powerful at sea, were next brought under fubjecçion. And after them, the Suevi, the Menapii, and all the nations, from the Mediterranean to the British fea.
From thence, stimulated by the desire of conqueft, he crossed over into Britain, upon pretence that the natives had furnished his enemies with supplies. Upon approaching the
fhores, he found them covered with men to oppose his land ing, and his forces were in danger of being driven back, till the standard-bearer of the tenth legion boldly leaped ashore, and, being supported by Cæsar, the natives were put to fight. The Britons being terrified at Cæsar's power, sent to desire a peace, which was granted them, and some hostages delivered. A storm, however, soon after destroying great part
of his feet, they resolved to take advantage of the disaster, and marched against him with a powerful army. But what could a naked undisciplined army do against forces that had been exercised under the greatest generals, and hardened by the conquest of the greatest part of the world? Being overthrown, they were obliged once more to fue for peace;, which, Cæfar granted them, and then returned to the continent. But his absence once more inspired this people, naturally fond of liberty, with resolution to disclaim the Roman power; ard in a second expedition by repeated victories, Cæfar so intimidated their general Caffibelanus, that he no longer endeavoured to refilt in the plains, but, keeping in the forests, seemed resolved to protract the war. However, Cæsar purfuing him closely, and crossing the Thames with his army, so ftraitened him, that he was obliged to submit to the conqueror's conditions, who imposed an annual tribute, and took hostages for the payment of it. Thus, in less than nine years, he conquered, together with Britain, all that country which extends from the Mediterranean to the German sea. It is said that, in these expeditions, he took eight hundred cities, subdued three hundred different states ; overcame three millions of men, one of which fell in the field of battle, an equal number being made prisoners of war * These conquests, and this destruction of mankind, may, in the present advancement of morals, be regarded with deteftation; but they were regarded as the height of human virtue, at the time they were atchieved. In fact, if we examine Cæsar's great assiduity in providing for his army, his skill in disposing them for battle, and his amazing intrepidity during the engagement, we shall not find a greater general in all antiquity. But in one thing he excelled all, with incontestible superiority; namely, in his humanity to the vanquished. This seemed a virtue but little known to the times in which he lived, so that mankind were then more obliged to heroes than they at present choose to confess.
192 Pompey, Caefar, and Craffus, the first Triumvirate.
Craffus carried on an unfuccessful war against the Parthians in Syria, and there loft his life. One of the Triumvirate' being thus taken off, the jealousy of the other two was soon perceived. Pompey was not able to bear an equal, nor Cæfar à fuperior; and thus the country was involved in a civil war.
Cicero, about this time, returned to Rome from Cilicia. His absence having prevented him from espousing the cause of either party, he now endeavoured to act as a mediator; but no propofal of accommodation would be listened to.
Pompey being the acknowledged general of the commonwealth, the fenate and confuls followed his enfigns. His rival, however, was more powerful by his activity, and the love of his foldiers.
In the mean time, those who had declared themselves most strongly in Cæsar's intereft, began to fear the consequences of the absolute power granted the consuls of difpofing all things at their pleasure, and of treating whom they would as cnemies to the state. But particularly Curio, with the two tribunes Marcus Antonius and Longinus, fuppofed they had reason to be apprehensive. They accordingly fled, disguised as slaves, to Cæsar's camp, deploring the injustice and tyrany of the fenate, and making a merit of their sufferings in his cause. Cæsar produced them to his army, in the habits which they had thus affumed, and being touched with the Atrongest compassion at their treatment, burst out into severe invectives against the fenate, alledging their tyranny over the ftate, their cruelty to his friends, and their Aagrant ingratitude to himself for all his past services. « There,” cried he, pointing to the tribunes, who were in the habits of Naves, is these are the rewards obtained by the faithful servants of « their country; men, whose persons are facred by their of« fice, and whose characters have been esteemed for their « virtues; these are driven from their country, obliged for « safety to appear as the meanest of mankind, and to find pro“ tection only in a distant province of the empire, for main« taining the rights of freedom, those rights which even Sylla, « in all the rage
of slaughter, durft not violate.” This speech he enforced with the most passionate gestures accompanied with tears. The soldiers, as if inspired with one mind, cried out, that they were prepared to follow him wherever he should lead, and were ready to die or revenge his injuries. A general acclamation rung through the whole camp; every man prepared for a new service of danger; and; forgetting