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DCXLV (F VI, 19)

TO QUINTUS LEPTA (AT ROME)
ASTURA (ABOUT THE END OF JULY)
I am glad Macula has done his duty. His Falernian villa always seemed to me suitable for a place of call, if only it is enough roofed in to receive our retinue. In other respects I don't otherwise than like the situation. But I shall not on that account desert your Petrinian villa, 1 for both the house and the picturesqueness of its situation make it suitable for residence rather than for a temporary lodging. As to some official management of these "royal" exhibitions, 2 I have spoken to Oppius; for I have not seen Balbus since you left. He has such a bad fit of the gout that he declines visits. On the whole you would, in my opinion, be certainly acting more wisely if you did not undertake it; for your object 3 in incurring all that labour you will in no wise attain. For the number of his intimate entourage is so great, that it is more likely that some one of them should drop off than that there should be an opening for anyone new, especially for one who has nothing to offer but his active service, in which Caesar will consider himself—if indeed he knows anything about it—to have conferred a favour rather than received one. However, we should look out for something, but something which may give you some distinction; otherwise I think that you not only ought not to seek for it, but should even avoid it. For myself, I think I shall pro-long my stay at Astura until Caesar's return, whenever that may be. Good-bye.


1 Near Mount Petrinum, close to Sinuessa.

2 The games Caesar meant to give upon his triumph. Lepta wished to take the contract for the supply of wine. He had been Cicero's praefectus fabrum in Cilicia (vol. ii., p. 118).

3 To secure Caesar's favour.

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