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I arrived at Tarsus on the 5th of June. There I was disturbed on many accounts—a serious war in Syria; serious cases of brigandage in Cilicia; difficulty in fixing on any definite scheme of administration, considering that only a few days remained of my year of office; and, greatest difficulty of all, the necessity, according to the decree of the senate, of leaving some one at the head of the province. No one could be less suitable than the quaestor Mescinius 1 —for of Caelius I don't hear a word. Far the best course appears to be to leave my brother Quintus with imperium. But in doing that many disagreeable consequences are involved—our separation, the risk of a war, the ill-conduct of the soldiers, 2 hundreds of others. What a nuisance the whole business is! But let fortune look to it, since any great exercise of reason is out of the question. As for you, since by this time, I hope, you are safe at Rome, you will as usual be good enough to look after everything which you may understand to affect my interests, especially in regard to my Tullia, about whose marriage I have written to Terentia my decision, since you were in Greece. In the next place, see to the honour to be decreed to me: for owing to your absence from Rome, I fear that the motion in the senate, in virtue of my despatch, was not sufficiently pressed. The following I will write to you in a more enigmatical style than usual-your sagacity will smell out the meaning: my wife's freedman —you know whom I mean—seemed to me, from a remark he casually let fall the other day, to have cooked his accounts as to the purchase of the property of the Crotonian tyrannicide. I really fear that you may kave noticed something. Pray on your sole responsibility, examine thoroughly into the matter and make the remainder completely secure. 3

I cannot express the extent of my fear. Pray let a letter from you fly to meet me. I write this in haste, being on the march, and with the army. Love to Pilia, and the prettiest of maids, Caecilia.

1 See p. 167.

2 He has lately heard of the murder of two of the sons of Bibulus in a mutiny of Gabinius's soldiers in Egypt. See next letter.

3 Written in Greek. The phrase δέδοικα δὴ μή τι νοήσῃς can only mean as above, "I fear you have noticed something," not as Tyrrell and others translate, "I fear there is something you have not noticed." Cicero has apparently been alarmed by some sentence in a letter of Atticus. We don't know what had happened, but in some way Philotimus, Terentia's freedman, had dealt with Milo's (the "Crotonian tyrannicide," in allusion to Milo, the runner of Croton) confiscated property. Now we are told by Asconius (§ 159) that, owing to his immense debts, Milo's property was transferred to the sector for a nominal sum (bona eius propter aeris alieni magnitudinem semuncia venierunt). When there is no balance, the agent will generally be suspected. Philotimus's connexion with the affair we have already heard of. See p. 142.

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