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CN. POMPEIUS. Cn. Pompeius was as much beloved by the Romans as his father was hated. When he was young, he wholly sided with Sylla, and before he had borne many offices or was chosen into the senate, he enlisted many soldiers in Italy. When Sylla sent for him, he returned answer, that he would not muster his forces in the presence of his general, unfleshed and without spoils; nor did he come before that in several fights he had overcome the captains of the enemy. He was sent by Sylla lieutenant-general [p. 242] into Sicily, and being told that the soldiers turned out of the way and forced and plundered the country, he sealed the swords of such as he sent abroad, and punished all other stragglers and wanderers. He had resolved to put the Mamertines, that were of the other side, all to the sword; but Sthenius the orator told him, He would do injustice if he should punish many that were innocent for the sake of one that was guilty; and that he himself was the person that persuaded his friends and forced his enemies to side with Marius. Pompey admired the man, and said, he could not blame the Mamertines for being inveigled by a person who preferred his country beyond his own life; and forgave both the city and Sthenius too. When he passed into Africa against Domitius and overcame him in a great battle, the soldiers saluted him Imperator. He answered, he could not receive that honor, so long as the fortification of the enemy's camp stood undemolished; upon this, although it rained hard, they rushed on and plundered the camp. At his return, among other courtesies and honors wherewith Sylla entertained him, he styled him The Great; yet when he was desirous to triumph, Sylla would not consent, because he was not yet chosen into the senate. But when Pompey said to those that were about him, Sylla doth not know that more worship the rising than the setting sun, Sylla cried aloud, Let him triumph. Hereat Servilius, one of the nobles, was displeased; the soldiers also withstood his triumph, until he had bestowed a largess among them. But when Pompey replied, I would rather forego my triumph than flatter them,—Now, said Servilius, I see Pompey is truly great and worthy of a triumph. It was a custom in Rome, that knights who had served in the wars the time appointed by the laws should bring their horse into the forum before the censors, and there give an account of their warfare and the commanders under whom [p. 243] they had served. Pompey, then consul, brought also his horse before the censors, Gellius and Lentulus; and when they asked him, as the manner is, whether he had served all his campaigns, All, said he, and under myself as general. Having gotten into his hands the writings of Sertorius in Spain, among which were letters from several leading men in Rome, inviting Sertorius to Rome to innovate and change the government, he burnt them all, by that means giving opportunity to ill-affected persons to repent and mend their manners. Phraates, king of Parthia, sent to him requesting that the river Euphrates might be his bounds. He answered, the Romans had rather the right should be their bounds towards Parthia. L. Lucullus, after he left the army, gave himself up to pleasure and luxury, jeering at Pompey for busying himself in affairs unsuitable to his age. He answered, that government became old age better than luxury. In a fit of sickness, his physician prescribed him to eat a thrush; but when none could be gotten, because they were out of season, one said, that Lucullus had some, for he kept them all the year. It seems then, said he, Pompey must not live, unless Lucullus play the glutton; and dismissing the physician, he ate such things as were easy to be gotten. In a great dearth at Rome, he was chosen by title overseer of the market, but in reality lord of sea and land, and sailed to Africa, Sardinia, and Sicily. Having procured great quantities of wheat, he hastened back to Rome; and when by reason of a great tempest the pilots were loath to hoist sail, he went first aboard himself, and commanding the anchor to be weighed, cried out aloud, There is a necessity of sailing, but there is no necessity of living. When the difference betwixt him and Caesar broke out, and Marcellinus, one of those whom he had preferred, revolted to Caesar and inveighed much against Pompey in the senate; Art thou not ashamed, said he, Marcellinus, to reproach [p. 244] me, who taught you to speak when you were dumb, and fed you full even to vomiting when you were starved? To Cato, who severely blamed him because, when he had often informed him of the growing power of Caesar, such as was dangerous to a democracy, he took little notice of it, he answered, Your counsels were more presaging, but mine more friendly. Concerning himself he freely professed, that he entered all his offices sooner than he expected, and resigned them sooner than was expected by others. After the fight at Pharsalia, in his flight towards Egypt, as he was going out of the ship into the fisher-boat the king sent to attend him, turning to his wife and son, he said nothing to them beside those two verses of Sophocles:
Whoever comes within a tyrant's door
Becomes his slave, though he were free before.
As he came out of the boat, when he was struck with a sword, he said nothing; but gave one groan, and covering his head submitted to the murderers.

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