'Oh! but what about that oarsman in Coponius's
you say, 'didn't he truly foretell what afterwards came to pass? ' He did indeed, and the very
things that all of us at the time feared would happen.
For news was coming to us that the armies of Caesar
and Pompey were facing each other in Thessaly. We
thought that Caesar's troops had more reckless
courage because they were fighting against their
country and greater strength because of their long
military training. Besides there was not one of us
who did not dread the outcome of the battle, but
our apprehension was not openly shown and was such
as not to be discreditable to men of strong character.
As for that Greek sailor, is it strange if, in the
extremity of his fear, he, as most people do in such
cases, lost his courage, reason, and self-control? In
his mental excitement and aberration, he merely
stated that things would occur, which, when he
was himself, he feared would come to pass. In
heaven's name, pray tell me, then, which you think
was more likely to have had the power to interpret
the decrees of the immortal gods—that crazy sailor,
or someone of our party then on the ground-Cato,
Coponius or I?