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As to young Quintus, I am glad that you got my letter sent by my letter-carrier before the one delivered by himself -though in any case you would not have been taken in. Yet, after all—well, I am anxious to hear what he said to you and what you said in your turn : I don't doubt you both spoke characteristically. But I hope Curius will deliver that letter to me. He is in himself indeed an attractive person and a man I like, but now he will have the crowning grace of your recommendation.
I have answered your letter sufficiently. Now listen to what, though I know it is not necessary to write, I yet am going to write. Many things distress me in my departurefirst and foremost, by heaven, that I am being separated from you. But I am also distressed by the fatigue of the voyage, so unsuitable not only to my time of life, but also to my rank. Moreover, the time of my departure is rather ridiculous. I am leaving peace to return to war; and the season which might have been spent in my favourite country places—so prettily built and so full of charm-I am wasting on a foreign tour. The consolations are that I shall either do my son some good, or make up my mind how much good he is capable of receiving. In the next place you will -as I hope and as you promise-presently be there. If that happens indeed things will be better all round. But what gives me more uneasiness than anything is the making up of my balances. Though they have been put straight, yet since Dolabella's debt is on the list, and among the debtors assigned to me are some unknown persons, I feel quite at sea, and this matter gives me more uneasiness than everything else. Accordingly, I don't think I have been wrong to write to Balbus more. openly than usual, to ask him that, if it should so happen that the debts did not come in at the proper time, he should come to the rescue; and telling him that I had commissioned you, in case of such an occurrence, to communicate with him. Please do so, if you think proper, and all the more if you are starting for Epirus.
I write this when on the point of embarking from my Pompeian house with three ten-oared pinnaces. Brutus is
Atticus's characteristic was silence (see vol. iii., p. 348: ad Att. xiii. 42). Quintus, as we see, was voluble and given to romancing. See pp. 81, 97. For the letters referred to see pp. 98-101.
still at Nesis, Cassius at Naples. Can you love Deiotarus and yet dislike Hieras ? When Blesamius came to me about it, though he was charged not to take any step except on the advice of our friend Sextus Peducæus, he never communicated with him or with any one of our party. I should like to kiss our dear Attica, far off as she is, so delighted was I with the good wishes she sent me by you. Please give her mine in return and many of them, and the same to Pilia.
DCCLXXI (F VII, 20)
VELIA, 20 JULY
VELIA seemed to me the more charming because I perceived that you were popular there. But why name you, who are a universal favourite ? Even your friend Rufio, upon my word, was as much in request as though he had been one of us. But I don't blame you for having taken him away to superintend your building operations; for although Velia is as valuable as the Lupercal, yet I would rather be where you are than own all your property here. If you will listen to me, as you usually do, you will keep this paternal estatefor the Velians seemed a little afraid that you wouldn't—and will not abandon that noble stream, the Hales, nor desert the Papirian mansion—though that other has a famous lotus which attracts even foreign visitors, but which would after all much improve your view if it were cut down. But, above all, it seems a most desirable thing, especially in such times as these, to have as a refuge in the first place a town whose citizens are attached to you, and in the second place a house and lands of your own, and that in a retired, healthy, and picturesque spot. And this, my dear Trebatius, is to my interest also, I think. But keep well and see to my affairs, and expect me home D.V. before the winter. I carried off from Sextus Fadius, Nico's pupil, the essay of Nico's “On Over-eating.” What a pleasant doctor! And what a ready scholar am I in such a school as that! But our friend Bassus' kept me in the dark about that book: not so you, it seems. The wind is rising. Take care of yourself.
1 This refers to a transaction of Deiotarus, tetrarch of Galatia, whom Cicero in B.C. 45 had defended before Cæsar on a charge of having tried to murder the latter in B.C. 47. He had been deprived of the greater part of his dominions in Armenia, but by promising an enormous bribe to Fulvia, or to Antony himself, his agents had induced Antony to assert that among the minutes left by Cæsar was one granting him restoration. He appears, however, on learning of Cæsar's death, to have taken the law into his own hands and seized the territories. Hieras and Blesamius are his agents in Rome, who had managed the transaction. And Deiotarus, having got what he wanted, would probably disavow them. See ante, p. 20; and 2 Phil. $S 95, 96.
Velia, 2oth July.
DCCLXXII (A XVI, 6)
VIBO, 25 JULY
As yet—for I have got as far as Sicca's house at Vibo-I have prosecuted my voyage with more comfort than energy. For the greater part has been done by rowing, and there have been no nor'-nor'-easters. That has been rather lucky, for there were two bays to be crossed, that of Pæstum and that of Vibo. We crossed both with sheets taut. I arrived at Sicca's house therefore on the eighth day from Pompeii, having rested one day at Velia. There I stayed at our friend Talna's house, and couldn't possibly have been received more hospitably-especially as Talna himself was away from home. So on the 24th I went to Sicca's house. There I found myself quite at home. So I put on an extra day to my visit. But I think when I reach Rhegium I shall consider-being
See vol. iii., p. 89.
“On long and weary sea voyage bent”) – whether to make for Patræ on a merchant vessel or to go as far as Tarentine Leucopetra on packet-boats, and thence to Corcyra : and if on the ship of burden, whether to go from the strait direct or from Syracuse. On this point I will write to you from Rhegium. By heaven, Atticus, it often occurs to me to ask:
“What boots it you to journey hither thus ?”3 Why am I not with you? Why do I not see my pretty villas—those sweet eyes of Italy? But it is enough and to spare that I am losing you. And from what am I running away? Is it danger? But of that at the present moment, if I do not mistake, there is none. For it is precisely to that which you use your influence to bid me return. For you say that my quitting the country is praised to the skies, but only on the understanding that I return before the ist of January. That I shall certainly try to do; for I had rather be at home even in fear, than at Athens without it. But look out to see to what things at Rome are tending, and either write me news of them or, as I should much prefer, bring it with you in person. Enough of this.
I hope you will not be annoyed at my next request, which I know is a subject of more anxiety to you than to myself : in heaven's name, set straight and clear up my debtor and creditor accounts. I have left an excellent balance, but there is need of careful attention. See that my co-heirs are paid for the Cluvian property on the ist of August; and what terms I ought to make with Publilius. He ought not to press, as I am not taking full advantage of my legal privileges : but, after all, I much wish him also to be satisfied. Terentia, again—what am I to assign to her ? Pay her even before the day if you can. But if-as I hope you are quickly coming to Epirus, I beg you to provide before you start for what I owe on security, to put it straight and leave it fully discharged.
i colexòv adóov opuaivovTES (Hom. Odyss. iii. 169).
? He apparently went to Syracuse, but returned to Rhegium (1 Phil. $ 7). Tarentine Leucopetra seems to be a different place from the Leucopetra near Rhegium, but it is not known. 3 See p. 70.
4 See p. 105.
But enough on these matters, and I fear you will think too much. Now just notice my carelessness. I have sent you a book “ On Glory": but there is the same preface in it as in the third book of the Academics. That results from the fact that I keep a volume of prefaces. From it I am accustomed to select one when I have begun some treatise. So being at the time at Tusculum, as I did not remember that I had already used that preface, I put it into the book which I sent you. When, however, I was reading the Academics on board ship, I noticed my mistake. Accordingly, I have written out a new preface, and am sending it to you. Please cut the other one off and glue this on. Give my love to Pilia and Attica, my pet and darling.
DCCLXXIII (F VII, 19)
RHEGIUM, 28 JULY
SEE how greatly I value you: and it is no more than your due, for I do not surpass you in affection. However, what I almost refused, or at any rate did not give you, when you were with me, I could not make up my mind to continue to owe you now that you are away. Accordingly, no sooner had I begun my voyage from Velia than I set to work to translate Aristotle's Topica, having been reminded by the sight of a city so warmly attached to you. I send you this book from Rhegium written in as clear a style as the subject admitted. But if certain parts appear to you to be somewhat obscure, you must reflect that no art can be learnt out of books without some one to explain it and without some practical exercise in it. You will not have to go far for an instance. Can the art of you jurisconsults be learnt out of books? Though there are a great number of them, they yet require a teacher and actual practice. However, if you read this with attention and repeatedly, you will be able to grasp the whole subject by yourself—at least so far as to under