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[109] Mindful chiefly of these facts Brutus and Cassius protracted the war. Antony, fearful of the same, resolved to force them to an engagement. He formed a plan of effecting a passage through the marsh secretly, if possible, in order to get in the enemy's rear without their knowledge, and cut off their avenue of supply from Thasos. So he arrayed his forces for battle with all the standards set each day, so that it might seem that his entire army was drawn up, while a part of his force was really working night and day cutting a narrow passage in the marsh, cutting down reeds, throwing up a causeway and flanking it with stone so that the earth should not fall away, and bridging the deeper parts with piles, all in the profoundest silence. The reeds, which were still growing around his passage-way, prevented the enemy from seeing his work. After working ten days in this manner he sent a column of troops by night suddenly, who occupied all the strong positions inside and built several redoubts at the same time. Cassius was amazed at the ingenuity as well as the secrecy of this work, and he formed the counter design of cutting Antony off from his redoubts. He carried a transverse wall across the whole marsh from his camp to the sea, cutting and bridging in the same manner as Antony had done, and laying a solid foundation for his rampart, thus intercepting the passage sage made by Antony, so that those inside could not escape to him, nor he render assistance to them.

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