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When he had taken a view of this post, he went next and examined Varus's camp, which was under the walls of the town, towards the gate named the Gate of War. The situation of it was extremely advantageous; for on the one side it was covered by the city of Utica itself, and on the other by a kind of theatre, which stood without the walls, the works round which took up so much room, that they rendered the approach to the camp extremely difficult. At the same time he saw all the ways crowded with people, who, out of fear of being pillaged, were carrying their most valuable effects into the city. He detached the cavalry against them to disperse them, and likewise have an opportunity of making some booty. Upon which, Varus ordered six hundred Numidian horse to advance to their assistance, which he further strengthened with four hundred foot, sent by Juba, a few days before, to reinforce the garrison of Utica. This king inherited from his father an affection for Pompey, and besides personally hated Curio; who, during his tribuneship had published a law to deprive him of his kingdom. The Numidian cavalry soon came to blows with ours; but were not able to stand their first charge, retreating to their camp, with the loss of a hundred and twenty men. Meantime, upon the arrival of Curio's fleet he ordered proclamation to be made among the merchant ships, which were at Utica, to the number of two hundred, that he would treat them as enemies, if they did not immediately repair to the Cornelian camp. Upon this proclamation, they instantly weighed anchor, and leaving Utica, sailed whither they were ordered; by which means the army was plentifully supplied with every thing they stood in need of.

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