The Ancient Library

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as their instrument. Hence followed (in b. c. 60) the coalition of Pompey with Caesar and Crassus (erroneously called the first triumvirate). Horten-sius now drew back from public life, seeing pro­bably tha.t his own party must yield to the arts and power of the coalition, and yet not choosing to forsake it. From this time to his death (in B. c. 50) he confined himself to his advocate's duties. He defended Flaccus, accused of extortion in Asia, jointly with Cicero, and took occasion to extol the acts of the latter in his consulship (ad Att. ii. 25). He also pleaded the cause of P. Lentulus Spinther, against whom Pompey had promoted an accusation for his conduct respecting Ptolemy Auletes, though Cicero, fearing a second banishment, declined the office (ad Fam. i. 1, ii. 1). He joined Cicero again in the defence of Sextius, and again allowed him to speak last (pro Sext. ii. 6). When the latter was in his province (b. c. 51), Hortensius defended his own nephew, M. Valerius Messalla, who was accused of bribery in canvassing for the consulship. He was, as usual, successful; but the case was so flagrant, that, next day, when Hortensius entered the theatre of Curio, he was received with a round of hisses—a thing mainly remarkable, because it was the first time he had suffered any thing of the kind (ad Fam. viii. 2). In the beginning of April, B. c/50, he appeared for the last time, with his wonted success, for App. Claudius, accused de majestate et ambitu by Dolabella, the future son-in-law of Cicero. He died not long after. Cicero received the news of his death at Rhodes, as he was returning home from his province, and was deeply affected by it (ad Att. vi. 6 ; comp. Brut. 1.) In the above sketch of Hortensius's life, we have kept Cicero constantly in view, for it i» from him -.—his speeches and letters, and other works—that we owe almost all our knowledge of his great rival. It may be well to recur to the relation in which they stood to each other at different times. We have seen that up to Cicero's consulship, in 63 b. c., they were continually opposed, professionally and politically. After this period they usually acted together professionally — for Hortensius re­tired (as we have seen) from political life in the year 60. Hortensius, in his easy way, seems to haye yielded without much struggle to Cicero ; yet the.:Jatter seems never quite to have got over jea­lousy for his former rival. When he was driven into exile by Clodius (in 58), Hortensius appears to have iised his influence to procure his return; yet Cicero could not be persuaded but that he was playing a part, and was secretly doing his utmost to keep him from Rome. Atticus in vain endea­voured to undeceive him. (Ad Q. Frat. i. 3, 4, ad Att. iii. 9.) On his return, indeed, he made public acknowledgment of his error, and spoke very hand­somely of Hortensius (pro Sept. 16—19, post Redit. 13, 14), and soon after he was named by Hor­tensius and Pompey to fill the place in the college of augurs, made vacant by the death of Q. Me-tellus Celer (Brut. 1, Pliilipp. ii. 2, 13) ; yet, when Atticus begged him to dedicate some work to Hortensius, he evaded the request (ad Att. iv. 6);—for the little treatise De Gloria, inscribed " Hortensius," was not written till 45 b. c., after the death of the orator. The same feelings recur in Cicero's letters from his province. In his ex­treme anxiety to return at the expiration of his year, he continually expresses his fears that Hor­tensius is playing him false, and working under-



hand to have'him detained yet longer (ad Att. v. 17; comp. ib. 2, &c.). There seems to have been really no ground for these suspicions, and we must set them down to the naturally susceptible and irritable temper of Cicero. It must be confessed, moreover, that the conduct of some of his great friends, Pompey in particular, had been such as to justify suspicions of others.

The character of Hortensius was rather fitted to conciliate than to command—to call forth regard rather than esteem. He was not, as we have seen,-at all scrupulous about the means he took to gain-verdicts ; but in considering this, we must not forget the low state of Roman manners (not (b speak of morals) at this period. Personally he seems to stand above suspicion of corruption. Yet" his enormous wealth was not all well gotten ; for Ci­cero quotes a case in which Hortensius did not scruple' to join Crassus in taking possession of the inherit­ance of Minuc. Basilius, though, from the circum­stances, he must have, known that the will under which he claimed was a forgery. (De Offic. iii. 18; cf. Parad. vi. 1; Val. Max. ix. 4, § 1.) And though he was honest as quaestor, though he would not accept a province to drain it of its riches, yet no doubt he shared the plunder of provinces, not immediately indeed, but in the shape of large fees and presents from the Dolabellas and other .persons like Verres, whom he so often and so successfully defended. He liked to live at Rome and his villas; he loved an easy life and a fair fame, had little ambition, and therefore avoided all acts that might have made him amenable to prosecution. The same easy temper, joined as it often is with a kind, heart and generous disposition, won him many friends ; and perhaps we may say that he had no enemies. He lived to a good age, little disturbed by ill health, surrounded by all that wealth can give, alive to all his enjoyments, with as much of active occupation as he desired, without being dis­turbed by the political turbulence of his times. He died just at the time when civil war broke out, a. complete specimen of an amiable Epicurean.

His eloquence was of the florid or (as it was termed) " Asiatic" style (Cic. Brut. 95), fitter for hearing than for reading. Yetrhe did write his speeches—on occasions at least (Cic. Brut. 96 ; Val, Max. v. 9. § 2). His voice was soft and musical (Brut. 88) ; his memory so ready and retentive, that he is said to have been able to come" out of a sale-room and repeat the auction-list back­wards (Senec. Proef. in Controv. I). We need not refer to Cicero (Brut. 88, in Caecil. 14) to per­ceive what use this must have been to him as an advocate. His action was very elaborate, so that' sneerers called him Dionysia—the name of a well-known dancer of the day (Gell. i. 5) ; and the pains he bestowed in arranging the folds of his toga have been recorded by Macrobius (Saturn, ii. 9). But in all this there must have been a real grace and dignity, for we read that Aesopus and Roscius, the tragedians, used to follow him into the forum to take a lesson in their own art.

Of his luxurious habits many stories are told. His house on the Palatine was that afterwards occupied by Augustus (Suet.,.^2^. 72); but this was comparatively simple and modest. In his villas no expense was spared. One he had near Bauli, described by Cicero (Acad. Prior, ii. 3) \ a second in the Ager Tusculanus ; but the most splendid was that near Laurentum. Here he laid

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