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[42] There were two men named Metellus, father and son. The father held a command under Antony at the battle of Actium and was taken prisoner, but not recognized. The son fought on the side of Octavius and held a command under him at the same battle. When Octavius looked over the prisoners at Samos the son was sitting with him. The old man was led forward covered with hair, misery, and dirt, and completely metamorphosed by them. When his name was called by the herald in the array of prisoners the son sprang from his seat, and, with difficulty recognizing his father, embraced him with a cry of anguish. Then restraining his lamentation he said to Octavius, "He was your enemy, I was your fellow-soldier. He has earned your punishment, I your reward. I ask you either to spare my father on my account, or to kill me at the same time on his account." There was much emotion on all sides, and Octavius spared Metellus, although he had been bitterly hostile to himself and had scorned many offers made to him to desert Antony.

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