Marcus Brutus

Marcus Brutus in Roman Biography

Brutus, (Marcus Junius,) a noted Roman, son of the preceding, was born in So B.C. Cato Uticensis was his maternal uncle, and afterwards his father-in-law, Brutus having married his daughter Porcia. In the civil wars he sided with Pompey. After the battle of Pharsalia he was treated with great kindness by Caesar, and appears to have been sincerely attached to him for a time. He .it the instigation of Caesar's enemies, induced to the conspiracy against the life of the dictator. Subsequently he and Cassius became the leaders of the republican army against Antony and Octavius. At the battle of Philippi, Brutus, who commanded the right was at first completely successful, and drove the troops of Octavius even to their camp ; but Antony, ving the mistake his enemies had committed iii pursuing fugitives, instead of assuring the victory to their own friends, turned upon the exposed flank of Cassius and entirely changed the fortune of the day. The republican troops were totally defeated; and Brutus, after seeing many of his bravest and most attached followers ay down their lives in order to prevent his falling into the hands of his enemies, killed himself with his own sword, 36 B.C. Plutarch "Lives;" Appian, "Bellum Civile;" Quevedo rVllLEC.AS, "VidadeM. Bruto," 1648.

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Marcus Brutus in Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities

Marcus Iunius Brutus, son of the preceding, was by the mother's side nephew of M. Cato (Uticensis). He accompanied his uncle to Cyprus, a.u.c. 695, where the latter was sent by Clodius to annex that island to the Roman Empire. It appears, however, that he did not copy the example of Cato 's integrity; for, having become the creditor of the citizens of Salamis to a large amount, he employed one Scaptius, a man of infamous character, to enforce the payment of the debt, together with an interest four times exceeding the rate allowed by law (Ad Att. v. 21). When Cicero governed the province of Cilicia, to which Cyprus seems to have been annexed, Brutus wrote to him, and was supported by Atticus in his request, entreating him to give Scaptius a commission as an officer of the Roman government, and to allow him to employ a military force to exact from the Salaminians the usurious interest which he illegally demanded. Cicero was too upright a magistrate to comply with such requests, but they were so agreeable to the practice of the times that he continued to live on intimate terms with the man who could prefer them; and the literary tastes of Brutus were a recommendation which he could not resist; so that he appears soon to have forgotten the affair of Scaptius, and to have spoken and thought of Brutus with great regard. They both, indeed, were of the same party in politics, and Brutus actively exerted himself in the service of Pompey, although his own father had been put to death by the orders of that commander. Being taken prisoner in the battle of Pharsalia, he received his life from the conqueror. Before Caesar set out for Africa to carry on war against Scipio and Iuba, he conferred on Brutus the government of Cisalpine Gaul, and in that province Brutus accordingly remained, and was actually holding an office under Caesar while his uncle Cato was maintaining the contest in Africa and committed suicide rather than fall alive into the hands of the enemy. His character, however, seems to have been greatly improved since his treatment of the Salaminians, for he is said to have governed Cisalpine Gaul with great integrity and humanity. In the year B.C. 45 he returned to Rome, but afterwards set out to meet Caesar on his return from Spain, and, in an interview which he had with him at Nicaea, pleaded the cause of Deiotarus, tetrarch of Galatia, with such warmth and freedom that Caesar was struck by it, and was reminded of what he used frequently to say of Brutus-that what his inclinations might be made a very great difference; but that, whatever they were, they would be nothing lukewarm. It was about this time also that Brutus divorced his first wife, Appia, daughter of Appius Claudius, and married the famous Porcia, his cousin, the daughter of Cato. Soon after, he received another mark of Caesar's favour, in being appointed praetor urbanus, B.C. 44; and he was holding that office when he resolved to become the assassin of the man whose government he had twice acknowledged by consenting to act in a public station under it. He was led into the conspiracy, it is said, by Cassius, who sought at first by writing, and afterwards by means of his wife Iunia, the sister of Brutus, to obtain his consent to become an accomplice; and Plutarch informs us that when the attack was made on Caesar in the Senate-house, the latter resisted and endeavoured to escape, until he saw the dagger of Brutus pointed against him, when he covered his head with his robe and resigned himself to his fate. See Caesar. After the assassination of Caesar, the conspirators endeavoured to stir up the feelings of the people in favour of liberty; but Antony, by reading the will of the dictator, excited against them so violent a storm of odium that they were compelled to flee from the city. Brutus retired to Athens, and used every exertion to raise a party there among the Roman nobility. Obtaining possession, at the same time, of a large sum of the public money, he was enabled to bring to his standard many of the old soldiers of Pompey who were scattered about Thessaly. His forces daily increasing, he soon saw himself surrounded by a considerable army, and Hortensius, the governor of Macedonia, aiding him, Brutus became master in this way of all Greece and Macedonia. He went now to Asia and joined Cassius, whose efforts had been equally successful. In Rome, on the other hand, the triumvirs were all-powerful; the conspirators had been condemned, and the people had taken up arms against them. Brutus and Cassius returned to Europe to oppose the triumvirs, and Octavius and Antony met them on the plains of Philippi. In this memorable conflict Brutus commanded the right wing of the republican army, and defeated the division of the enemy opposed to him, and would in all probability have gained the day if, instead of pursuing the fugitives, he had brought reinforcements to his left wing, commanded by Cassius, which was hard pressed and eventually beaten by Antony. Cassius, upon this, believing everything lost, slew himself in despair. Brutus bitterly deplored his fate, styling him, with tears of the sincerest sorrow, "the last of the Romans." On the following day, induced by the ardour of the soldiers, Brutus again drew up his forces in line of battle, but no action took place, and he then took possession of an advantageous post, where it was difficult for an attack to be made upon him. His true policy was to have remained in this state, without hazarding an engagement, for his opponents were distressed for provisions, and the fleet that was bringing them supplies had been totally defeated by the vessels of Brutus. The condition of things, however, was unknown to the latter, and, after an interval of twenty days, he hazarded a second battle. Where he himself fought in person, he was still successful; but the rest of his force was soon overcome, and the conflict ended in a total defeat of the republican army. Escaping with only a few friends, he passed the night in a cave, and, as he saw his cause irretrievably ruined, ordered Strato, one of his attendants, to kill him. Strato refused for a long time to perform the painful office; but, seeing Brutus resolved, he turned away his face, and held his sword while Brutus fell upon it. He died in the forty- third year of his age, B.C. 42. A great deal of false glamour has been thrown around the character of Brutus. That he was a stern and consistent patriot throughout the whole of his career, the sketch which we have given of his movements prior to the assassination of Caesar most clearly disproves. Why hold office under one who was trampling upon the liberties of his country? Why require so much solicitation before engaging in the conspiracy? Was he not aware that Caesar was a usurper?-this would show a miserable want of penetration. Or if he preferred security to danger, where was the Roman patriot in this? The truth is that Brutus, notwithstanding all that has been said of him, was but a tardy patriot. His motives towards the close of his career were no doubt pure enough, but he ought to have had nothing to do with Caesar from the moment when that general began to act with treason towards his country. As a student and man of letters, the character of Brutus appears to more advantage than as a patriot. He was remarkable for literary application, usually rising with this view long before day, and it is said that on the evening previous to a battle, while his army was in a state of anxious suspense and alarm, he calmly occupied himself in his tent with writing an abridgment of the history of Polybius. One of the most singular circumstances in the life of Brutus is that of the so-called apparition which, it was said, appeared to him on one occasion in his tent at midnight. "Who art thou?" inquired Brutus. "Thy evil genius," replied the phantom; "we shall meet again at Philippi." And so it happened. The spirit reappeared on the eve of the second battle of Philippi-a story that reminds one of the Bodach Glas in Waverley. See Plutarch's life of Brutus.

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Marcus Junius Brutus the Younger in Wikipedia

Marcus Junius Brutus (early June 85 BC – late October 42 BC), often referred to simply as Brutus, was a politician of the late Roman Republic. He is best known in modern times for taking a leading role in the assassination conspiracy against Julius Caesar. Early life - Marcus Junius Brutus the Younger was the son of Marcus Junius Brutus the Elder and Servilia Caepionis. His father was killed by Pompey the Great in dubious circumstances after he had taken part in the rebellion of Lepidus; his mother was the half-sister of Cato the Younger, and later became Julius Caesar's mistress.[2] Some sources refer to the possibility of Caesar being his real father.[3] Brutus' uncle, Quintus Servilius Caepio, adopted him in about 59 BC, and Brutus was known officially for a time as Quintus Servilius Caepio Brutus before he reverted to using his birth-name. However, following Caesar's assassination in 44 BC, Brutus revived his adoptive name in order to illustrate his links to another famous tyrannicide, Gaius Servilius Ahala, from whom he was descended.[4][5] Brutus held his uncle in high regard[6] and his political career started when he became an assistant to Cato, during his governorship of Cyprus.[7] During this time, he enriched himself by lending money at high rates of interest. He returned to Rome a rich man, where he married Claudia Pulchra.[8] From his first appearance in the Senate, Brutus aligned with the Optimates (the conservative faction) against the First Triumvirate of Marcus Licinius Crassus, Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus and Gaius Julius Caesar. Senate career - When civil war broke out in 49 BC between Pompey and Caesar, Brutus followed his old enemy and present leader of the Optimates, Pompey. When the Battle of Pharsalus began, Caesar ordered his officers to take him prisoner if he gave himself up voluntarily, and if he persisted in fighting against capture, to let him alone and do him no violence.[9] After the disaster of the Battle of Pharsalus, Brutus wrote to Caesar with apologies and Caesar immediately forgave him. Caesar then accepted him into his inner circle and made him governor of Gaul when he left for Africa in pursuit of Cato and Metellus Scipio. In 45 BC, Caesar nominated Brutus to serve as urban praetor for the following year. Also, in June 45 BC, Brutus divorced his wife and married his first cousin, Porcia Catonis, Cato's daughter.[10][11] According to Cicero the marriage caused a semi-scandal as Brutus failed to state a valid reason for his divorce from Claudia other than he wished to marry Porcia.[12] The marriage also caused a rift between Brutus and his mother, who resented the affection Brutus had for Porcia.[13] Conspiracy to kill Caesar - Death of Caesar by Vincenzo Camuccini Around this time, many senators began to fear Caesar's growing power following his appointment as dictator for life.[14] Brutus was persuaded into joining the conspiracy against Caesar by the other senators.[15] (In William Shakespeare's play Julius Caesar, he also discovers letters placed on his Praetor's chair and a statue of his ancestor, which have been forged by Cassius to make Brutus feel as if he were doing the right thing for Rome. This, however, may just be dramatic license on the part of Shakespeare. There is no real evidence that Cassius ever planted phony notes). Eventually, Brutus decided to move against Caesar after Caesar's king-like behavior prompted him to take action.[16][17] His wife was the only woman privy to the plot.[18][19] The conspirators planned to carry out their plot on the Ides of March (March 15) that same year. On that day, Caesar was delayed going to the Senate because his wife, Calpurnia Pisonis, tried to convince him not to go.[20] The conspirators feared the plot had been found out.[21] Brutus persisted, however, waiting for Caesar at the Senate, and allegedly still chose to remain even when a messenger brought him news that would otherwise have caused him to leave.[22] When Caesar finally did come to the Senate, they attacked him. Publius Servilius Casca Longus was allegedly the first to attack Caesar with a blow to the shoulder, which Caesar blocked.[23] However, upon seeing Brutus was with the conspirators, he covered his face with his toga and resigned himself to his fate.[24] The conspirators attacked in such numbers that they even wounded one another. Brutus is said to have been wounded in the hand.[25][26] After Caesar's assassination - After the assassination, the Senate passed an amnesty on the assassins. This amnesty was proposed by Caesar's friend and co-consul Marcus Antonius. Nonetheless, uproar among the population caused Brutus and the conspirators to leave Rome. Brutus settled in Crete from 44 to 42 BC.[citation needed] In 43 BC, after Octavian received his consulship from the Roman Senate, one of his first actions was to have the people that had assassinated Julius Caesar declared murderers and enemies of the state.[27] Marcus Tullius Cicero, angry at Octavian, wrote a letter to Brutus explaining that the forces of Octavian and Marcus Antonius were divided. Antonius had laid siege to the province of Gaul, where he wanted a governorship. In response to this siege, Octavian rallied his troops and fought a series of battles in which Antonius was defeated.[28] Upon hearing that neither Antonius nor Octavian had an army big enough to defend Rome, Brutus rallied his troops, which totaled about 17 legions. When Octavian heard that Brutus was on his way to Rome, he made peace with Antonius.[29] Their armies, which together totaled about 19 legions, marched to meet Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus. The two sides met in two engagements known as the Battle of Philippi. The first was fought on October 3, 42 BC, in which Brutus defeated Octavian's forces, although Cassius was defeated by Antonius' forces. The second engagement was fought on October 23, 42 BC and ended in Brutus' defeat. After the defeat, he fled into the nearby hills with only about four legions. Knowing his army had been defeated and that he would be captured, Brutus committed suicide. Among his last words were, according to Plutarch, "By all means must we fly; not with our feet, however, but with our hands." Brutus also uttered the well-known verse calling down a curse upon Antonius (Plutarch repeats this from the memoirs of Publius Volumnius): Forget not, Zeus, the author of these crimes (in the Dryden translation this passage is given as Punish, great Jove, the author of these ills).[30] Plutarch wrote that, according to Volumnius, Brutus repeated two verses, but Volumnius was only able to recall the one quoted. Antonius, as a show of great respect, ordered Brutus' body to be wrapped in Antonius' most expensive purple mantle (this was later stolen and Antonius had the thief executed). Brutus was cremated, and his ashes were sent to his mother, Servilia Caepionis.[31] His wife Porcia was reported to have committed suicide upon hearing of her husband's death, although, according to Plutarch (Brutus 53 para 2), there is some dispute as to whether this is the case: Plutarch states that there is a letter in existence that was allegedly written by Brutus mourning the manner of her death.

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