10. M. Octavius
Cn. F. M. N. (Cic. Fam. 8.2.2
), the son of No. 9.
He was a friend of Ap. Claudius Pulcher, consul B. C. 54, and accompanied the latter into Cilicia, but left the province before Claudius in order to become a candidate for the aedileship.
He was curule aedile B. C. 50 along with M. Caelius; and as both of them were friends of Cicero, they begged the orator, as he was then in Cilicia, to send them panthers for the games they had to exhibit. (Cic. ad Fam. 3.4, ad Att.
5.21, 6.1.21.) On the breaking out of the civil war in B. C. 49, Octavius, true to the hereditary principles of his family, espoused the aristocratical party.
He was appointed, along with L. Scribonius Libo, to the command of the Liburnian and Achaean fleets, serving as legate to M. Bibulus, who had the supreme command of the Pompeian fleet.
He and Libo did good service to the cause; they defeated Dolabella on the illyrian coast, and compelled C. Antonius to surrender at the island of Coricta (Caes. Civ. 3.5
; Dio Cass. 41.40; Floras, 4.2.31; Oros. 6.15
.) Octavius afterwards proceeded to attack the town of Salonae in Dalmatia, but was repulsed with considerable loss, and thereupon joined Pompey at Dyrrhachium.
After the battle of Pharsalia, Octavius, who still possessed a considerable fleet, set sail for Illyricum with the hope of securing it for the Pompeian party.
At first he met with great success, and defeated Gabinius, who had been sent by Caesar into Illyricum with reinforcements for the army, which was already there ; but he was soon afterwards driven out of the country (B. C. 47) by Cornificius and Vatinius, and compelled to fly to Africa, where the Pompeian party were making a stand. (Hirt, B. Alex.
42-46 ; D. C. 42.11
After the battle of Thapsus (B. C. 46), Octavius was in the neighbourhood of Utica in command of two legions, and claimed to have the supreme command with Cato. (Plut. Cat. min.
He is not mentioned again till the battle of Actium (B. C. 31), when he commanded along with M. Insteius the middle of Antony's fleet. (Plut. Ant. 65