1. The wife of Caesar1 was Cornelia, the daughter of the Cinna who had once held the sole power at Rome,2 and when Sulla became master of affairs,3 he could not, either by promises or threats, induce Caesar to put her away, and therefore confiscated her dowry. Now, the reason for Caesar's hatred of Sulla was Caesar's relationship to Marius. For Julia, a sister of Caesar's father, was the wife of Marius the Elder, and the mother of Marius the Younger, who was therefore Caesar's cousin. [2] Moreover, Caesar was not satisfied to be overlooked at first by Sulla, who was busy with a multitude of proscriptions, but he came before the people as candidate for a priesthood, although he was not yet much more than a stripling. To this candidacy Sulla secretly opposed himself, and took measures to make Caesar fail in it, and when he was deliberating about putting him to death and some said there was no reason for killing a mere boy like him, he declared that they had no sense if they did not see in this boy many Mariuses.4 [3] When this speech was reported to Caesar, he hid himself for some time, wandering about in the country of the Sabines. Then, as he was changing his abode by night on account of sickness, he fell in with soldiers of Sulla who were searching those regions and arresting the men in hiding there. Caesar gave their leader, Cornelius, two talents to set him free, and at once went down to the sea and sailed to King Nicomedes in Bithynia.5 [4] With him he tarried a short time, and then, on his voyage back,6 was captured, near the island Pharmacusa, by pirates, who already at that time controlled the sea with large armaments and countless small vessels.

1 Many think that opening paragraphs of this Life, describing the birth and boyhood of Caesar, have been lost.

2 In 86 B.C., after the death of his colleague, Valerius Flaccus.

3 In 82 B.C. Cf. the Pompey, ix. 1 f.

4 Nam Caesari multos Marios inesse (Suetonius, Divus Julius, i.).

5 Caesar served under Marcus Thermus, praetor of Asia, in 81-80 B.C., being then nineteen years of age, and by him was sent to Bithynia in order to raise a fleet to assist in the siege of Mitylene.

6 According to Suetonius ( Div. Jul. 4), it was on a voyage from Rome to Rhodes (after 77 B.C.) that Caesar was captured by pirates.

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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • J. B. Greenough, Benjamin L. D'Ooge, M. Grant Daniell, Commentary on Caesar's Gallic War, AG BG 7.89
  • Cross-references to this page (4):
  • Cross-references in notes from this page (3):
    • Suetonius, Divus Julius, 1
    • Suetonius, Divus Julius, 4
    • Plutarch, Pompey, 9.1
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
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