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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


V. The Establishment of the Military Monarchy

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

Chapter X - Brundisium, Ilerda, Pharsalus, and Thapsus


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Page 90


No one probably formed a judgment as to the situation of affairs with so painful a clearness, and so free from fear or hope on his own account, as Marcus Cato. Completely convinced that after the days of Ilerda and Pharsalus the monarchy was inevitable, and morally firm enough to confess to himself this bitter truth and to act in accordance with it, he hesitated for a moment whether the constitutional party ought at all to continue a war, which would necessarily require sacrifices for a lost cause on the part of many who did not know why they offered them. And when he resolved to fight against the monarchy not for victory, but for a speedier and more honourable fall, he yet sought as far as possible to draw no one into this war, who chose to survive the fall of the republic and to be reconciled to monarchy.

He conceived that, so long as the republic had been merely threatened, it was a right and a duty to compel the lukewarm and bad citizen to take part in the struggle; but that now it was senseless and cruel to compel the individual to share the ruin of the lost republic. Not only did he himself discharge every one who desired to return to Italy; but when the wildest of the wild partisans, Gnaeus Pompeius the younger, insisted on the execution of these people and of Cicero in particular: it was Cato alone who by his moral authority prevented it.

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