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CCXCIV (A VII, 4)

TO ATTICUS (AT ROME)
(FORMIAE II DECEMBER)
DIONYSIUS was burning with desire to be with you, and I have accordingly sent him, but, by Hercules, with great reluctance. However, I was obliged to give way. I have found him, indeed, both a good scholar (which I knew before> and a man of high character, very obliging, careful too of my reputation, honest, and—not to give him only the praise that suits a freedman—a thoroughly good man.

I saw Pompey on the 10th of December: we were together perhaps two hours. He seemed to me to be much delighted at my return: urged me to a claim a triumph: undertook to do his part: warned me not to enter the senate until I had gained my object, for fear of alienating some tribune by the speeches I delivered. Need I say more? In cordiality of mere language nothing could have been more explicit. On the political situation, however, the tone of his remarks assumed the existence of downright war. He held out no hope of maintaining peace: "he had felt before that Caesar was alienated from him, he had recently become quite sure of it. Hirtius, Caesar's most intimate friend, had been in the neighbourhood, but had not called on him. Moreover, Hirtius having arrived in the evening of the 6th of December, and Balbus having arranged to visit Scipio 1 on the 7th, before daybreak, Hirtius started to rejoin Caesar late in the previous night." This seemed to him to be a clear "symptom" 2 of alienation. In short, nothing else consoles me but the opinion that the man, to whom even his enemies have assigned a second consulship, and fortune has given supreme power, will not be so mad as to put these advantages in danger. But if he once begins to run amuck, I verily have many fears which I do not venture to put into writing. However, as the matter stands at present, I think of approaching the city on the 3rd of January.


1 Pompey's father-in-law.

2 τεκμηριῶδες.

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