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5. [18]

All these things Quinctius did by the advice and at the instigation of Naevius: nor is there anything strange in his adopting the advice of the man whose assistance he thought at his service. For not only had he promised it in Gaul, but every day he kept on saying at Rome that he would pay the money as soon as he gave him a hint to do so. Quinctius moreover saw that he was able to do so. He knew that he ought; he did not think that he was telling lies, because there was no reason why he should tell lies. He arranged, therefore, that he would pay the Scapulae as if he had the money at home. He gives Naevius notice of it, and asks him to provide for the payment as he had said he would. [19] Then that worthy man—I hope he will not think I am laughing at him if I call him again a most worthy man—as he thought that he was brought into a great strait, hoping to pin him down to his own terms at the very nick of time, says that he will not pay a penny, unless a decision is first come to about all the affairs and accounts of the partnership, and unless he knew that there would be no dispute between him and Quinctius. We will look into these matters at a future time, says Quinctius, but at present I wish you to provide, if you please, what you said you would. He says that he will not do so on any other condition; and that what he had promised no more concerned him, than it would if when he was holding a sale by auction, he had made any bidding at the command of the owner. [20] Quinctius being perplexed at this desertion, obtains a few days' delay from the Scapulae; he sends into Gaul to have those things sold which he had advertised; being absent, he sells them at a less favourable time than before; he pays the Scapulae with more disadvantage to himself than he would have done. Then of his own accord he calls Naevius to account, in order, since he suspected that there would be a dispute about something, to provide for the termination of the business as soon as possible, and with the smallest possible trouble. [21] He appoints as his umpire his friend Marcus Trebellius; we name a common friend, a relation of our own, Sextus Alphenus, who had been brought up in his house, and with whom he was exceedingly intimate. No agreement could be come to; because the one was willing to put up with a slight loss, but the other was not content with a moderate booty. [22] So from that time the matter was referred to legal decision. 1 After many delays, and when much time had been wasted in that business, and nothing had been done, Naevius appeared before the judge.


1 Lit. “recognizances were entered into.” When the praetor had granted an action, the plaintiff required the defendant to give security for his appearance before the praetor on a stated day, commonly the day but one after the in jus vocatio.

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