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Review Of Memoirs Of The Court Of Augustus
by [?]

He is come too late into the world with his fury for freedom, with his Brutus and Cassius. We have all, on this side of the Tweed, long since settled our opinions: his zeal for Roman liberty and declamations against the violators of the republican constitution, only stand now in the reader’s way, who wishes to proceed in the narrative without the interruption of epithets and exclamations. It is not easy to forbear laughter at a man so bold in fighting shadows, so busy in a dispute two thousand years past, and so zealous for the honour of a people, who, while they were poor, robbed mankind, and, as soon as they became rich, robbed one another. Of these robberies our author seems to have no very quick sense, except when they are committed by Caesar’s party, for every act is sanctified by the name of a patriot.

If this author’s skill in ancient literature were less generally acknowledged, one might sometimes suspect, that he had too frequently consulted the French writers. He tells us, that Archelaus, the Rhodian, made a speech to Cassius, and, in so saying, dropt some tears; and that Cassius, after the reduction of Rhodes, was covered with glory.–Deiotarus was a keen and happy spirit–the ingrate Castor kept his court.

His great delight is to show his universal acquaintance with terms of art, with words that every other polite writer has avoided and despised. When Pompey conquered the pirates, he destroyed fifteen hundred ships of the line.–The Xanthian parapets were tore down.–Brutus, suspecting that his troops were plundering, commanded the trumpets to sound to their colours.–Most people understood the act of attainder passed by the senate.–The Numidian troopers were unlikely in their appearance.– The Numidians beat up one quarter after another.–Salvidienus resolved to pass his men over, in boats of leather, and he gave orders for equipping a sufficient number of that sort of small craft.–Pompey had light, agile frigates, and fought in a strait, where the current and caverns occasion swirls and a roll.–A sharp out-look was kept by the admiral.–It is a run of about fifty Roman miles.–Brutus broke Lipella in the sight of the army.–Mark Antony garbled the senate. He was a brave man, well qualified for a commodore.

In his choice of phrases he frequently uses words with great solemnity, which every other mouth and pen has appropriated to jocularity and levity! The Rhodians gave up the contest, and, in poor plight, fled back to Rhodes.–Boys and girls were easily kidnapped.–Deiotarus was a mighty believer of augury.–Deiotarus destroyed his ungracious progeny.–The regularity of the Romans was their mortal aversion.–They desired the consuls to curb such heinous doings.–He had such a shrewd invention, that no side of a question came amiss to him.–Brutus found his mistress a coquettish creature.

He sometimes, with most unlucky dexterity, mixes the grand and the burlesque together; the violation of faith, sir, says Cassius, lies at the door of the Rhodians by reite-rated acts of perfidy.–The iron grate fell down, crushed those under it to death, and catched the rest as in a trap.–When the Xanthians heard the military shout, and saw the flame mount, they concluded there would be no mercy. It was now about sunset, and they had been at hot work since noon.

He has, often, words, or phrases, with which our language has hitherto had no knowledge.–One was a heart-friend to the republic–A deed was expeded.–The Numidians begun to reel, and were in hazard of falling into confusion.–The tutor embraced his pupil close in his arms.–Four hundred women were taxed, who have, no doubt, been the wives of the best Roman citizens.–Men not born to action are inconsequential in government.–Collectitious troops.–The foot, by their violent attack, began the fatal break in the Pharsaliac field.–He and his brother, with a politic, common to other countries, had taken opposite sides.

His epithets are of the gaudy or hyperbolical kind. The glorious news–eager hopes and dismal fears–bleeding Rome–divine laws and hallowed customs–merciless war–intense anxiety.