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Although1 in a personal interview I recommended as earnestly as I could to you the publicani of Bithynia, and though I gathered that by your own inclination, no less than from my recommendation, you were anxious to promote the advantage of that company in every way within your power, yet, since those interested thought it of great importance to them that I should inform you by letter what my feeling towards them was, I have not hesitated to write you this. For I wish you to believe that, while I have ever had the greatest pleasure in doing as much as possible for the order of publicani generally, yet this particular company of Bithynia has my special good wishes. The company, owing to the rank and birth of its members, constitutes a very important section of the state 2 for it is made up of members of the other companies; and it so happens that a very large number of this company are on extremely intimate terms with me, and especially the man who is at the present time at the head of the business, P. Rupilius, son of Publius, of the tribe Menenia, the master of that company. Such being the case, I beg you with more than common earnestness to protect Cn. Pupius, who is an employee of this company, by every sort of kindness and liberality within your power; and to secure, as you easily may, that his services shall be as satisfactory as possible to the company, while at the same time determining that the property and interests of the partners—as to which I am well aware how much power a quaestor possesses—should be secured and promoted. While you will in this be doing me a very great favour, I can at the same time from personal experience give you my promise, and pledge my word for it, that you will find the partners of the Bithynia company mindful of and grateful for any service you have rendered them.

1 For Crassipes, who was betrothed, if not married, to Tullia as her Second husband, see Letter CVII. The breaking off the betrothal (discidium) or the divorce (divortium), we don't know which, had evidently not left him at enmity with Cicero.

2 Or, leaving out pars, "is the most important in the city."

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