This young man, when a fortune left him by his father, acquired in such a traffic, had inspired him with the hope of a higher condition, and the gown and forum were
the objects of his choice, by declaiming vehemently in behalf of men and causes of the lowest kind, in opposition to the interest and character of the good, first came to the notice of the people, and then to offices of honour.
Having passed through the offices of quaestor, plebeian, and curule aedile, and, lastly, that of praetor;
when now he raised his mind to the hope of the consulship, he courted the gale of popular favour by maligning the dictator, and received alone the credit of the decree of the people.
All men, both at Rome and in the army, both friends and foes, except the dictator himself, considered this measure to have been passed as an insult to him;
but the dictator himself bore the wrong which the infuriated people had put upon him, with the same gravity with which he endured the charges against him which his enemies laid before the multitude;
and receiving the letter containing a decree of the senate respecting the equalization of the command while on his journey, satisfied that an equal share of military skill was not imparted together with the equal share [p. 796]
of command, he returned to the army with a mind unsubdued alike by his fellow-citizens and by the enemy.