previous next

[58] Some of Cæsar's friends were astonished at this act of bravery; others blamed him, saying that it was a deed becoming a soldier but not a general. As Cæsar saw that he could not conceal a second attempt he ordered Postumius to sail to Brundusium in his place and tell Gabinius to cross over with the army immediately, and if he did not obey, to give the same order to Antony, and if he failed then to give it to Calenus. Another letter was written to the whole army in case all three should hesitate, saying, "that every one who was willing to do so should follow Postumius on shipboard and sail to any place where the wind might carry them, and not to mind what happened to the ships, because Cæsar did not want ships but men." Thus did Cæsar put his trust in fortune rather than in prudence.1 Pompey, in order to anticipate Cæsar's reënforcements, made haste and led his army forward prepared for battle. While two of his soldiers were searching in midstream for the best place to cross the river, one of Cæsar's men attacked and killed them both, whereupon Pompey drew back, as he considered this event inauspicious. All of his friends blamed him for missing this capital opportunity.

1 Cæsar's account of this matter is as follows: "As these things made Cæsar anxious he wrote more imperatively to his forces at Brundusium that they should not omit the opportunity of the first favorable wind for sailing, and that they should direct their course either to the shore of Apollonia, or to that of the Labeates, because there they might beach their ships. These places were not frequented by the enemy's blockading fleet because they dared not venture very far from their harbors." (iii. 25.)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (L. Mendelssohn, 1879)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (1 total)
  • Cross-references to this page (1):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: