Eutra'pelus, P. Volu'mnius
a Roman knight, obtained the surname of Eutrapelus (Εὐτράπελος
) on account of his liveliness and wit (See respecting this word Aristot. Rh. 2.12
.) Two of Cicero's letters are addressed to him (ad Fam.
7.32, 33); and in a letter to Paetus, B. C. 46 (ad Fam.
9.26), Cicero gives an amusing account of a dinner-party at the house of Eutrapelus, at which he was present.
Eutrapelus was an intimate friend of Antony, and a companion of his pleasures and debauches. (Cic. Philipp.
The fair Cytheris, the mistress of Antony, was originally the freedwoman and mistress of Volumnius Eutrapelus, whence we find her called Volumnia, and was surrendered to Antony by his friend. (Cic. Fam. 9.26
2.24.) After Caesar's death, Eutrapelus, in consequence of his connexion with Antony, became a person of considerable importance; and we find that Cicero availed himself of his influence in order to get a letter presented to Antony, in which he begged for a libera legatio. (Ad Att.
15.8.) On the defeat of Antony before Mutina in B. C. 43, Eutrapelus, in commons with Antony's other friends, was exposed to great danger, but was protected and assisted by Atticus.
The latter soon had an opportunity of returning this favour; for, on Antony's return into Italy, Eutrapelus, who was praefectus fabrum in his army, protected Atticus, who feared for his own safety on account of his connexion with Cicero and Brutus. Eutrapelus further erased from the list of proscriptions, at the intercession of Atticus, the name of the poet L. Julius Calidus, which he had inserted himself. (Nepos, Att.
9, 10, 12.) Eutrapelus is mentioned by Horace. (Epist.