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The policy of Caesar was pursued, and things which he merely contemplated

were made the basis of new laws.

It now appeared that Antonius was to be master of Rome in Caesar's stead.

That great mouth by the name of Cicero had occasion to declare that though

the tyrant was dead, the tyranny still lived. Nor is it impossible that

Antonius, who had now by the marriage of his daughter to Lepidus, secured

that general's cordial support, might have retained his ascendancy in the

state. To his complete success, however, one serious obstacle opposed

itself, and that obstacle was Octavius. This young man, himself of large

ambitions and abilities, was in Apollonia at the time of his great uncle's

assassination. As soon as he heard the news he hastened to Rome, assumed

his adoptive name of Caius Julius Caesar Octavianus, and laid claim to the

rights and duties of his inheritance. He was received with much favor by

the people. Even the Senate was cordial; for it was hoped in that body that

Octavianus could be played off against Antonius, and an opportunity be thus

obtained for the restoration of the Republic. The aristocracy at this time

was led by Cicero, who for policy's sake induced the senators to support

the young whelp of Caesarism until what time they might the more

conveniently dispose of him and his cause. So, while Marcus Antonius was

absent on an expedition against the insurgent Decius Brutus, in Cisalpine

Gaul, Cicero procured the passage of a resolution declaring him a public

enemy. Octavianus was authorized to go to the relief of Brutus, who was

besieged in Mutina by Antonius. The latter was twice defeated; Brutus was

relieved; Antonius joined Lepidus beyond the Alps, and the young Caesar was

left master of Italy. No sooner, however, had this leadership been attained

than the senatorial party, having used Octavianus till they thought his

services no longer needed, and disliking him as heartily as they did

Antonius, transferred the command to Brutus. This act precipitated a

crisis. Octavianus returned to Rome. His soldiers entered the Senate House

and demanded the consulship for their master. The aristocrats had to

succumb, and Caesar was made consul.

Negotiations were now opened with Antonius and Lepidus. An interview was

held and a reconciliation effected. The three leaders agreed to a joint

government of Rome. Thus was formed the Second Triumvirate. The settlement

was to continue for five years. It was stipulated that the new Caesar and

Lepidus should proceed at once against Marcus Brutus and Cassius, under

whose banners had gathered or were gathering the fragments of the

aristocratic opposition. Nor were the triumvirs slow to eliminate from the

capital and the neighboring states the residue of the faction which upheld

the counter-revolution. Chief among this party was Cicero. The great orator

had endeavored to please every body, and had pleased none. The lawyer had

been uppermost in him so long that his eyes had been transferred to his

back, and he could only gaze down the pathway of the past and sigh for a

precedent. He advanced blindly against the naked sword of his fate. For the

triumvirs made up a proscription list, and Antonius picked the name of

Cicero. The orator endeavored to escape, and would have succeeded had not a

certain sentimental indecision prevailed over common sense to bring him

back to his villa at Formiae. His friends