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The motive which gave rise to all these wars was the opinion he entertained that both his honour and interest were concerned in revenging the murder of his uncle, and maintaining the state of affairs he had established. Immediately after his return from Apollonia, he formed the design of taking forcible and unexpected measures against Brutus and Cassius; but they having foreseen the danger and made their escape, he resolved to proceed against them by an appeal to the laws in their absence, and impeach them for the murder. In the mean time, those whose province it was to prepare the sports in honour of Caesar's last victory in the civil war, not daring to do it, he undertook it himself. And that he might carry into effect his other designs with greater authority, he declared himself a candidate in the room of a tribune of the people who happened to die at that time, although he was of a patrician family, and had not yet been in the senate. But the consul, Mark Antony, from whom he had expected the greatest assistance, opposing him in his suit, and even refusing to do him so much as common justice, unless gratified with a large bribe, he went over to the party of the nobles, to whom he perceived Sylla to be odious, chiefly for endeavouring to drive Decius Brutus, whom he besieged in the town of Modena, out of the province, which had been given him by Caesar, and confirmed to him by the senate. At the instigation of persons about him, he engaged some ruffians to murder his antagonist; but the plot being discovered, and dreading a similar attempt upon himself, he gained over Caesar's veteran soldiers, by distributing among them all the money he could collect. Being now commissioned by the senate to command the troops he had gathered, with the rank of praetor, and in conjunction with Hirtius and Pansa, who had accepted the consulship, to carry assistance to Decius Brutus, he put an end to the war by two battles in three months. Antony writes, that in the former of these he ran away, and in two days afterwards made his appearance without his general's cloak and his horse. In the last battle, however, it is certain that he performed the part not only of a general, but a soldier; for, in the heat of the battle, when the standard-bearer of his legion was severely wounded, he took the eagle upon his shoulders, and carried it a long time.
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