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[10] Strife sprang up between them immediately and they proceeded to arm themselves secretly against each other. Cæsar, who was a master of dissimulation, made speeches in the Senate in the interest of harmony with Bibulus, as though he were taking care lest harm should come to the republic from their disagreement. As he was believed to be sincere, Bibulus was thrown off his guard. While Bibulus was unprepared and suspecting nothing, Cæsar secretly got a large band of soldiers in readiness and brought before the Senate measures for the relief of the poor by the distribution of the public land to them. The best part of this land around Capua,1 which was leased for the public benefit, he proposed to bestow upon those who were the fathers of at least three children, by which means he bought for himself the favor of a multitude of men. Twenty-thousand, who had three children each, came forward at once. As many senators opposed his motion he
B.C. 59
pretended to be indignant at their injustice, and rushed out of the Senate and did not convene it again for the remainder of the year,2 but harangued the people from the rostra. In a public assembly he asked Pompey and Crassus what they thought about his proposed laws. Both gave their approval, and the people came to the voting-place carrying concealed daggers.

1 This land had been public domain ever since the second Punic war. ( Velleius, ii. 44.)

2 "Appian and Dion are wrong in affirming that he ceased to assemble the Senate; for he called them together several times, among others to make them swear to observe his law and to declare Ptolemy and Ariovistus friends of the Roman people," etc. (Duruy, iii. 206.)

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    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), LEX
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), CA´PUA
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