Roman Empire | Roman Society
Africa on behalf of Caesar, rushed amidst his enemies' swords and was slaughtered. King Juba, who conquered him, failing to kill himself, had himself killed by a slave. Attius Varus, who had held the province for Pompey, fell afterwards at Munda. Marc Antony, Caesar's great lieutenant in the Pharsalian wars, stabbed himself. Cassius Longinus, another lieutenant under Caesar, was drowned. Scipio, Pompey's partner in greatness at Pharsalia, destroyed himself in Africa. BibuIus, his chief admiral, pined to death. Young Ptolemy, to whom Pompey fled, was drowned in the Nile. The fate of his sister Cleopatra is known to all the world. Pharnaces, Caesar's enemy in Asia, fell in battle. Cato destroyed himself at Utica.
Pompey's eldest son, Cnreus, was caught wounded in Spain and slaughtered. Sextus the younger was killed some years afterward by one of Antony's soldiers. Brutus and Cassius, the two great conspirators, both committed suicide. But of these two we hear little or nothing in the" Commentaries"; nor of Augustus Caesar, who did contrive to live in spite of all the bloodshed through which he had waded to the throne. Among the whole number there are not above three, if so many, who died fairly fighting in battle.
The above is a list of the names of men of mark, - of warriors chiefly, of men who, with their eyes open, knowing what was before them, went out to encounter danger for certain purposes. The bloody catalogue is so complete, so nearly comprises all whose names are mentioned, that it strikes the reader with almost a comic horror. But when we come to the slaughter of whole towns, the devastation of a country effected purposely that men and women might starve, to the abandonment of the old, the young, and the tender, that they might perish on the hillsides, to the mutilation of crowds of men, to the burning of cities told us in a passing word, to the drowning of many thousands, - mentioned as we should mention the destruction of a brood of rats, - the comedy is allover, and the heart becomes sick. Then it is that we remember that the coming of Christ has changed all things, and that men nowthough terrible things have been done since Christ came to us - are not as men were in the days of Caesar.