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WHAT a loss the Republic has sustained by the death of Pansa you must be well aware. In these circumstances you must use your influence and foresight to prevent our opponents hoping to regain their strength now that the consuls have been removed. I will take care that Antony is unable to keep any footing in Italy. I am following him in hot haste. I hope that I shall secure two things—that Ventidius does not slip past me 1 nor Antony remain in Italy. I specially beg you to send instructions to that shiftiest of men Lepidus, that he may not be in a position to renew the war against me if Antony effects a junction with him. For as to Asinius Pollio, I think you are quite clear as to what he will do. The legions of Lepidus and Asinius are numerous, good, and strong. And I don't write this to you because I know that the same facts escape your notice, but because I am most thoroughly convinced that Lepidus will never go straight-should you by chance have any doubt on that point! I beg you also to keep Plancus up to the mark, who will—I hope-stick to the Republic now that Antony has been defeated. If Antony has got himself across the Alps, I have resolved to station a force on the Alps and to keep you informed of everything.

29 April, in camp at Regium. 2

[The next day's march of Decimus Brutus ended at Parma. There he found that Antony had been some days before him, and had plundered the town to supply his army. Two words of a despatch from Parma—Parmenses miserrimos, "Oh most wretched people of Parma "—are preserved and numbered in some editions Fam. 11.13b. See p.288; Phil. 14.9.]

1 See ante, p. 218. Ventidius Bassus, as we have seen, did get past Decimus and join Antony.

2 Regium Lepidi, mod. Reggio, on the Aemi1ian road between Mutina and Parma.

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