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[53] That part of Africa which the Romans took from the Carthaginians they still call Old Africa. The part that belonged to King Juba, and which was taken by Gaius Cæsar at a later period, they call for that reason New Africa; it might also be called Numidian Africa. Accordingly Sextius, who held the government of New Africa as the appointee of Octavius, summoned Cornificius to abandon Old Africa to him because the whole country had been assigned to Octavius in the allotment of the triumvirs. Cornificius replied that he did not know what allotment the triumvirs had made among themselves, and that since he had received the government from the Senate he would not surrender it to anybody else without the order of the Senate. This was the origin of hostilities between them. Cornificius had the heavier and more numerous army. That of Sextius was more nimble though inferior in number, by which means he was enabled to dash around and detach from Cornificius his inland districts until he was besieged by Ventidius, a lieutenant of Cornificius, who brought against him superior forces and whom he resisted valiantly. Lælius, another lieutenant of Cornificius, ravaged the province of Sextius, sat down before the city of Cirta, and laid siege to it.

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