What do you like about the ISE? What could we do better? Please tell us in this 10-minute survey!

Start Survey

Internet Shakespeare Editions

Become a FriendSign in

About this text

  • Title: Life of Caesar
  • Editor: John D. Cox

  • Copyright John D. Cox. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: Plutarch
    Editor: John D. Cox
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Life of Caesar

    11

    XI.

    Caesar Praetor of Spain.

    The government of the province of Spain being fallen unto Caesar, for that he was Praetor, his creditors came and cried out upon him, and were importunate of him to be paid. Caesar, being unable to satisfy them, was compelled to go unto Crassus, who was the richest man of all Rome, and that stood in need of Caesar's boldness and courage to withstand Pompey's greatness in the commonwealth.

    Crassus surety for Caesar to his creditors.

    Crassus became his surety unto his greediest creditors for the sum of eight hundred and thirty talents: whereupon they suffered Caesar to depart to the government of his province. In this journey it is reported, that passing over the mountains of the Alps, they came through a little poor village that had not many households, and yet poor cottages. There his friends that did accompany him asked him merrily, if there were any contending for offices in that town, and whether there were any strife there amongst the noblemen for honor. Caesar speaking in good earnest, answered: "I cannot tell that," said he, "but for my part I had rather be the chiefest man here than the second person in Rome." Another time also when he was in Spain, reading the history of Alexander's acts, when he had read it, he was sorrowful a good while after, and then burst out in weeping. His friends seeing that, marvelled what should be the cause of his sorrow. He answered them, " Do ye not think," said he, " that I have good cause to be heavy, when king Alexander, being no elder than myself is now, had in old time won so many nations and countries: and that I hitherunto have done nothing worthy of myself?"