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[51] Pompey now put Scaurus, who had been his quæstor in the war, in charge of Syria, and the Senate afterward appointed Marcius Philippus as his successor and Lentulus Marcellinus as the successor of Philippus, both being of prætorian rank. Much of the biennial term of each was consumed in warding off the attacks of the neighboring Arabs. It was on account of these events in Syria that Rome began to appoint for Syria proconsuls, so-called, with power to levy troops and engage in war like consuls. The first of these sent out with an army was Gabinius. As he
Y.R. 699
was in readiness to begin the war, Mithridates, king of the
B.C. 55
Parthians, who had been driven out of his kingdom by his brother, Orodes, persuaded Gabinius to turn his forces from the Arabs against the Parthians. At the same time Ptolemy XI., king of Egypt, who likewise had lost his throne, prevailed upon him by a large sum of money to turn his arms from the Parthians against Alexandria. Gabinius overcame
the Alexandrians and restored Ptolemy to power, but
B.C. 54
was himself banished by the Senate for invading Egypt without their authority, and undertaking a war considered ill-omened by the Romans; for it was forbidden by the Sibylline books. I think that Crassus succeeded Gabinius in the government of Syria -- the same who met with a great disaster when waging war against the Parthians. While
Y.R. 703
Lucius Bibulus was in command of Syria after Crassus, the
B.C. 51
Parthians made an incursion into that country. While the
Y.R. 714
government was in charge of Saxa, the successor of Bibulus,
B.C. 40
they overran the country as far as Ionia, the Romans being then occupied by the civil wars. I shall deal with these events more particularly in my Parthian history.

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