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Having entered upon his office,1 he introduced a new regulation, that the daily acts both of the senate and people should be committed to writing, and published.2 He also revived an old custom, that an officer3 should precede him, and his lictors follow him, on the alternate months when the fasces were not carried before him. Upon preferring a bill to the people for the division of some public lands, he was opposed by his colleague, whom he violently drove out of the forum. Next day the insulted consul made a complaint in the senate of this treatment; but such was the consternation, that no one having the courage to bring the matter forward or move a censure, which had been often done under outrages of less importance, he was so much dispirited, that until the expiration of his office he never stirred from home, and did nothing but issue edicts to obstruct his colleague's proceedings. From that time, therefore, Caesar had the sole management of public affairs; insomuch that some wags, when they signed any instrument as witnesses, did not add " in the consulship of Caesar and Bibulus," but, "of Julius and Caesar;" putting the same person down twice, under his name and surname. The following verses likewise were currently repeated on this occasion: “Non Bibulo quidquam nuper, sed Caesare factum est;
Nam Bibulo fieri consule nil memini.
” “Nothing was done in Bibulus's year:
No; Caesar only then was consul here.
” The land of Stellas, consecrated by our ancestors to the gods, with some other lands in Campania left subject to tribute, for the support of the expenses of the government, he divided, but not by lot, among upwards of twenty thousand freemen, who had each of them three or more children. He eased the publicans, upon their petition, of a third part of the sum which they had engaged to pay into the public treasury; and openly admonished them not to bid so extravagantly upon the next occasion. He made various profuse grants to meet the wishes of others, no one opposing him; or if any such attempt was made, it was soon suppressed. Marcus Cato, who interrupted him in his proceedings, he ordered to be dragged out of the senate-house by a lictor, and carried to prison. Lucius Lucullus, likewise, for opposing him with some warmth. he so terrified with the apprehension of being criminated, that to deprecate the consul's resentment, he fell on his knees. And upon Cicero's lamenting in some trial the miserable condition of the times, he the very same day, by nine o'clock, transferred his enemy, Publius Clodius, from a patrician to a plebeian family; a change which he had long solicited in vain.4 At last, effectually to intimidate all those of the opposite party, he by great rewards prevailed upon Vettius to declare, that he had been solicited by certain persons to assassinate Pompey; and when he was brought before the rostra to name those who had been concerted between them, after naming one or two to no purpose, not without great suspicion of subornation, Caesar, despairing of success in this rash stratagem, is supposed to have taken off his informer by poison.
1 A. U. C. 695.
2 The proceedings of the senate were reported in short notes taken by one of their own order, "strangers" not being admitted at their sittings. These notes included speeches as well as acts. These and the proceedings of the assemblies of the people, were daily published in journals [diurna], which contained also accounts of the trials at law, with miscellaneous intelligence of births and deaths, marriages and divorces. The practice of publishing the proceedings of the senate, introduced by Julius Caesar, was discontinued by Augustus.
3 Within the city, the lictors walked before only one of the consuls, and that commonly for a month alternately. A public officer, called Accensus, preceded the other consul, and the lictors followed. This custom had long been disused, but was now restored by Caesar.
4 In order that he might be a candidate for the tribuneship of the people; it was done late in the evening, at an unusual hour for public business.
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