previous next

[125] So Brutus led out his army unwillingly and formed them in line of battle before his walls, ordering them not to advance very far from the hill so that they might have a safe retreat if necessary and a good position for hurling darts at the enemy. In each army the men exchanged exhortations with each other. There was great eagerness for battle, and unbounded confidence. On the one side was the fear of famine, on the other a well-deserved shame that they had constrained their general to fight when he still favored delay, and fear lest they should come short of their promises and prove weaker than their boastings, and expose themselves to the charge of rashness instead of winning praise for good counsel; because also Brutus, riding through the ranks on horseback, showed himself before them with a severe countenance and reminded them in a few words of what the opportunity offered. "You want to fight," he said; "you force me to battle when I am able to conquer otherwise.1 Do not falsify my hopes or your own. You have the advantage of the higher ground and everything safe in your rear. The enemy's position is the one of peril because he lies between you and famine." With these words he passed on, the soldiers telling him to trust them and echoing his words with shouts of confidence.

1 ὑμεῖς με ἑτέρως ἔχοντα νικᾶν ἐβιάσασθε. The Latin version of Candidus reads, "You have forced me, who thought differently, and had victory in my grasp, to come to battle." Mendelssohn thinks that there is a lacuna in the existing text after the word ἑτέρως, which should be filled in accordance with the version of Candidus. Professor Wright suggests the rendering I have given above, which is clear and forceful without any change of the text.

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 Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: