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5. M. Lollius, M. F. is first mentioned as governing the province of Galatia as propraetor. (Eutrop. 7.10.) He was consul B. C. 21, with Q. Aemilius Lepidus (D. C. 54.6; Hor. Ep. 1.20. 28); and in B. C. 16 he commanded as legate in Gaul. Some German tribes, the Sigambri, Usipetes and Tenctheri, who had crossed the Rhine, were at first defeated by Lollius (Obsequ. 131), but they subsequently conquered the imperial legate in a battle, in which the eagle of the fifth legion was lost. Although this defeat is called by Suetonius (Suet. Aug. 23) "majoris infamiae quam detrimenti," yet it was considered of sufficient importance to summon Augustus from the city to Gaul; and it is usually classed, with the loss of the army of Varus, as one of the two great Roman disasters in the reign of Augustus. (Lollianae Varianaeque clades, Tac. Ann. 1.10; Suet. l.c.) On the arrival of Augustus, the Germans retired and re-crossed the Rhine. (D. C. 54.20; Vell. 2.97.)

The misfortune of Lollius did not, however, deprive him of the favour of Augustus. He was subsequently appointed by the emperor as tutor to his grandson, C. Caesar, whom he accompanied to the East in B. C. 2. But it would appear that he did not deserve this confidence; for Pliny (H; N. 9.35. s. 58) tells us that he acquired immense wealth by receiving presents from the kings in the East; and his character is drawn in still darker colours by Velleius Paterculus, who describes him (2.97) as a man more eager to make money than to act honourably, and as pretending to purity and virtue while guilty of every kind of vice. This estimate of his character, however, ought probably to be taken with some deductions, as Velleius is equally lavish in his praises of the friends, and in his abuse of the enemies of Tiberius; and Lollius, we know, was a personal enemy of Tiberius, and prejudiced C. Caesar against him. (Suet. Tib. 12; Tac. Ann. 3.48.) The commendation which Horace bestows upon Lollius in the ode addressed to him (Carm. 4.9) must, of course, be taken with as great deductions as the reproaches of Velleius; but since the poet expressly speaks of his freedom from all avarice,

" Vindex avarae fraudis et abstinens
Ducentis ad se cuncta pecuniae,"

we must believe that Lollius had not become notorious for his love of money till he accompanied C. Caesar into the East. While in the East, Lollius incurred the displeasure of C. Caesar, owing, it is said, to his having betrayed to the Parthians the plans of the Romans. Pliny states (l.c.) that Lollius put an end to his own life by poison, and Velleius Paterculus (2.102), though he leaves it uncertain, implies that such was the case, and adds that his death occasioned general joy.

It is uncertain whether Lollius bore any cognomen. In an inscription (apud Sigon. et Pigh. ad ann. 732) he is called simply M. Lollius, M. F. Some writers suppose that this surname was Paullinus, because his granddaughter was called Lollia Paullina, and because we find an M. Lollius Paullinus who was consul suffectus A. D. 93; but this is not conclusive evidence, as we know that the Romans frequently added cognomens, and changed them, in the imperial period. In no ancient writer is Lollius mentioned with any surname.

Lollius appears to have left two sons, to the eldest of whom Horace addressed two of his Epistles. (Ep. 1.2 and 18). In the latter of these epistles Horace speaks of Lollius having served against the Cantabri in Spain. One of these brothers appears to have obtained the consulship, though his name does not occur in the Fasti; for the M. Lollius, the father of Lollia Paullina, whom Tacitus calls consularis (Ann. 12.1), must have been a son of M. Lollius, the guardian of C. Caesar.

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