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  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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


    XXVII. Notwithstanding, such as at the first had saved themselves by flying, the most part of them were gotten with their king into the city of Alexia, the which Caesar went and besieged, although it seemed inexpugnable, both for the height of the walls as also for the multitude of soldiers they had to defend it. But now, during this siege, he fell into a marvelous great danger without, almost incredible. For an army of three hundred thousand fighting men, of the best men that were among all the legions of the Gauls, came

    The siege of Alexia.

    against him being at the siege of Alexia, besides them that were within the city, which amounted to the number of threescore and ten thousand fighting men at the least: so that perceiving he was shut in betwixt two so great armies, he was driven to fortify himself with two walls, the one against them of the city, and the other against them without. For if those two armies had joined together, Caesar had been utterly undone. And therefore,

    Caesar's great victory at Alexia.

    this siege of Alexia, and the battle he wan before it, did deservedly win him more honor and fame than any other. For there, in that instant and extreme danger, he showed more valiantness and wisdom than he did in any battle he fought before. But what a wonderful thing was this! that they of the city never heard anything of them that came to aid them until Caesar had overcome them and furthermore, that the Romans themselves, which kept watch upon the wall that was built against the city, knew also no more of it than they, until it was done, and that they heard the cries and lamentations of men and women in Alexia, when they perceived on the other side of the city such a number of glistering shields of gold and silver, such store of bloody corslets and armors, such a deal of plate and moveables, and such a number of tents and pavilions after the fashion of the Gauls, which the Romans had gotten of their spoils in their camp! Thus suddenly was this great army vanished, as a dream or vision: where the most part of them were slain that day in battle Furthermore, after that they within the city of Alexia had done great hurt to Caesar and themselves also,

    Alexia yielded up to Caesar.

    in the end they all yielded themselves. And Vercingentorix (he that was their king and captain in all this war) went out of the gates excellently well armed, and his horse furnished with rich caparison accordingly, and rode round about Caesar, who sat in his chair of estate. Then lighting from his horse, he took off his caparison and furniture, and unarmed himself, and laid all on the ground, and went and sat down at Caesar's feet, and said never a word. So Caesar at length committed him as a prisoner taken in the wars, to lead him afterwards in the triumph at Rome.