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any idea of his intentions, gave his orders, and sat down on his bed to read Plato's book on the Immortality of the Soul. Surprised at not finding his sword at the head of his bed, he violently called for it, and was enraged at his son for having caused it to be taken away, and accused him of a design to give him up disarmed to Caesar. His sword was brought to him; he examined its point, and said, I am now my own master; He then a second time read Plato's treatise, and fell into a sound sleep. Near the dawn of day, after having been assured that all those for whom he interested himself were safe, he stabbed himself with his sword, but without being able to kill himself. His son and his friends, on hearing a noise, immediately came to him; and a physician, one of his freedmen, endeavoured to dress the wound, but Câto recovering his senses, tore his wound open, and expired at the age of forty-eight. Caesar lamented that Cato envied him the glory of saving his life, and pardoned his son. '1'
Proud of an origin which flattery derived from the gods, and conscious of his own superior powers, C. Julius Caesar, even from his earliest years, had aspired to the eminent station which he afterwards attained. Seized with the fever of ambition, at an age when most men have no pursuit but that of pleasure and dissipation, he endeavoured to disguise it under the appearance of indolence. But this conduct could not escape the penetration of Sylla, who, unmoved by the consideration of his tender years, ordered him to be included in the proscription which he was then meditating. He was saved, however, by the earnest entreaties of his friends: but Sylla, in yielding to their importunities, blamed them for sparing one who would one day destroy them, aifd predicted, that " in that boy, there would be found more than one Marius." At other times he would say, " distrust that youth, whose loosened band seems to betray so much carelessness and sloth; he is not what he would appear to be." It is true that Ccesar, even when his life was considered most in danger, had resolutely refused to repudiate his wife Cornelia, the daughter of Sylla. The same firmness was cpnspicuous upon other occasions, when his native vigour broke through the restraints which his policy had imposed. At length the death of Sylla opened the promised career to his ambition. He soon attained the highest . popularity, by his liberal benefactions, and his constant protection of those who sought his favour. . Apparently occupied by the interests of others, he seemed to neglect his own, and never lost an opportunity of obliging his connections or friends.
, The death of Julia, his aunt, and the widow of Marius, determined him to attempt the revival of a faction which the authority of Sylla had suppressed. He ventured to restore the statues of Marius, decorated with all the trophies of victory, and silenced all the opposition of the senate, by openly defending this conduct. The following year he contended for and obtained the dignity of sovereign pontiff, while, at the same time, he exerted all his eloquence to defend the wild projects of Catiline and hi* confederates. The artful manner of his address to the senate, as it may be seen in Sallust, cannot however acquit him of the serious charge of having been one among that iniquitous confederacy.
But the popularity he had gained was purchased by so much profusion and extravagance, that his patrimony was consumed, and, when he was appointed Praetor in Spain, his creditors would have prevented his departure, had not the friendship of Crassus interposed to effect his deliverance. He had been in that province before, and it was there that he wept on beholding the statue of Alexander, at the reflection that he had performed no memorable action at an age when the Macedonian hero had already subdued the Persian empire. On his return from Spain, he rejected the honour of a triumph to which he had sufficient claims, that he might be at full liberty to become a candidate for the consulship.
When he obtained that high dignity, he strengthened his party by forming an alliance with Pompey, on whom he.bestowed his daughter in marriage, and conciliated