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 When Antony saw this about noon, instantly, with rage and fury, he turned his own army, which was facing in another direction, and led it against the fortification of Cassius which lay between his camp and the marsh. He carried tools and ladders intending to take it by storm and force his way into Cassius' camp. While he was making this audacious charge, obliquely and up hill, across the space that separated the two armies, the soldiers of Brutus were provoked at the insolence of the enemy in dashing boldly athwart their front while they stood there armed. So they charged of their own volition, without any order from their officers, took them in flank, and killed as many as they could reach. The battle once begun they charged upon the army of Octavius, also, which was drawn up opposite, put it to flight, pursued it to the camp which Antony and Octavius had in common, and captured it. Octavius himself was not there, having been warned in a dream to beware of that day, as he has himself written in his Memoirs.1
1 ὡς αὐτὸς ἐν τοῖς ὑπομνήμασιν ἔγραψεν. Plutarch used the same words with a single variation, substituting ἱστορεῖ (relates) for ἔγραψεν (has written). This identity of language would indicate that they drew from the same source, yet their accounts of the beginning of the battle differ from each other. Plutarch says that at a council of war held by Brutus and Cassius it was resolved to give battle on the following day, although Cassius favored delay; that after the resolution was taken Cassius was in good spirits, and expressed his confidence in victory; and that on the following morning the scarlet robe, which was the Roman signal of battle, was hung out in the camps of both Brutus and Cassius. Still, the two accounts are not necessarily conflicting, since one tells what took place in the republican camp, and the other what occurred in that of the triumvirs. Plutarch's authority is Messala Corvinus, who commanded a legion under Brutus, and who was probably present at the council of war, since he relates a conversation that he had with Cassius immediately after it. (Life of Brutus, 39, 40.)
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