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 Marcus was one of the lieutenants of Brutus and was proscribed for that reason. When Brutus was defeated he was captured. He pretended to be a slave and was bought by Barbula. The latter, perceiving that he was skilful, placed him over his fellow-slaves and gave him charge of his private disbursements. As he was clever in all respects and superior in intelligence to the condition of a slave, his master had suspicions and encouraged him to hope that if he would confess that he was one of the proscribed he (Barbula) would procure his pardon. He denied stoutly, and gave himself a feigned name and family and former masters. Barbula brought him to Rome, expecting that if he were a proscript he would show reluctance to come, but he followed all the same. One of Barbula's friends, who met him at the gates, saw Marcus standing by his side in the character of a slave, and privately told Barbula who he was. The latter obtained from Octavius, through the intercession of Agrippa, the erasure of the name of Marcus from the proscription. The latter became a friend of Octavius, and some time later served as his lieutenant against Antony at the battle of Actium. Barbula was then serving with Antony, and the fortune of both of them was reversed. For when Antony was vanquished Barbula was taken prisoner and he pretended to be a slave, and Marcus bought him, pretending not to know him. Then he laid the whole matter before Octavius and asked that he might compensate Barbula with a like service, and his request was granted. Like good fortune attended them in after times, for they both held the chief magistracy in the city the same year.1
1 Schweighäuser was not able to find any trace of consuls bearing these names, but Mendelssohn refers us to Borghesi (v. 289), from which it appears that Marcus Lollius and Q. Æmilius Lepidus Barbula were consuls in the year of Rome 733, i.e. ten years after the battle of Actium.
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