The Ancient Library

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On this page: Caenus – Caesar




He belonged originally to the party of the optimates; but on the outbreak of the Civil War, attached himself to Caesar; then, thinking himself slighted by the latter, he tried, during his prsetorship, to stir up disorder in Rome. He was de­prived of his office by the senate, fled from Rome, and, in the year 48 B.C., attempted to excite a rising in Lower Italy, in which he met with a violent death. According to Cicero, his strong point as an orator was his power of haranguing the people ; in the courts he shone mostly when on the side of the prosecution. His style was, if Cicero may be believed, brilliant, dignified, and witty. Several of his letters to Cicero are preserved in the eighth book of Cicero's Epistulce ad FamiliarCs. They constitute an important contribution to the history of the time.

Caeneus (Gr. Kaincus). The son of ElStus and Hippia, one of the Lapithae of Gyrton in Thessaly. The story was that he was originally a girl named Caenis (Kainis), whom her lover Poseidon changed, at her own request, into a man, and at the same time rendered her invulnerable. Caeneus took part in the Argonautic expedition and the Calydonian boar-hunt. At the marriage of PirithSus, the Centaurs, finding him in­vulnerable, crushed him to death with the trunks of trees, and he was afterwards changed into a bird. (Sec pirithous.)

Cajsar was for centuries the cognomen of the ancient patrician family of the lulii. From the dictator Gaius lulius Caesar it passed to his adopted son Octavianus, the founder of the Roman empire, and was assumed by all the male members of the Julian dynasty, including the emperor. After this dynasty had died out, all the male members of the subsequent dynasties assumed it, to show that they belonged to the imperial house. But after the death of Hadrian in 138 a.d., the title of Caesar was only assumed by the princes whom the emperors, had named as their successors, or chosen to be their colleagues in the government.

Caesar (Gaius lulius). Julius Caesar was born in 102 or 1(X) B.C., and was assas­sinated on March 15th, b.c. 44. He was famous no less as an orator and writer than as a general and statesman. Endowed with extraordinary natural gifts, he re­ceived a careful education under the super­intendence of his mother Aurelia. In B.C. 77 he came forward as the public accuser of Dolabella, and entered the lists against the

most celebrated advocates of the day, Cotta and Hortensius. From that time his fame was established as that of an advocate of the first rank.

The faculties ot which he had given evidence he cultivated to their highest point under the tuition of the rhetorician Molo in Rhodes, and attained such success,

(Naples, Museum.)

that his contemporaries regarded him as an orator second only to Cicero. Indeed, Cicero himself fully recognizes his genius, awarding especial praise to the elegance and purity of his Latin. Csesar, however, left but few speeches in a finished state, and these have not come down to us. A number of writings give evidence of the

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