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DCCCXXXI (F X, 10)

TO L. MUNATIUS PLANCUS (N GALLIA COMATA)
ROME, 30 MARCH
THOUGH I had been fully informed by our friend Furnius as to your sentiments and your, policy in regard to the Republic, yet the perusal of your letter has enabled me to form a clearer judgment of your whole mind. Wherefore, though the entire fortune of the state is depending on the result of one battle—which I think by the time that you read these words will have been already decided-yet by the mere report of your sentiments which has gained currency you have earned great applause. Accordingly, it we had had a consul at Rome, the senate would have put on record in terms highly complimentary to you how much your contemplated movement and the preparations you have made are appreciated. And for that the time has not only not passed, but in my opinion is not even yet fully ripe. For in my eyes the only compliment worthy the name is that which is offered and given to illustrious men, not in hope of future advantage, but for important services actually rendered. Wherefore, if only some form of a state exists in which the light of honour is, capable of displaying its brightness, there are no honours, believe me, however splendid, with which you will not be lavishly endowed. Now this honour, which can be truly so called, is not meant to impart a momentary impulse, but is the reward of unvarying excellence. Wherefore, my dear Plancus, throw yourself heart and soul into the pursuit of glory: come to your country's rescue; relieve your colleague; support the unanimous desire and the wonderfully united aspiration of all nations. You will find in me a supporter of your policy, a promoter of your dignity, in every particular your most loving and faithful friend. For to the other reasons for our being united by love, mutual good services, and long habit, there is now added devotion to our country: and that has been sufficient to make me prefer your life to my own.

30 March.


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