Page:Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology (1870) - Volume 2.djvu/780

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the hopes of the aristocrats who had raised him to the consulship, for Caesar gained him over to his Bide by a bribe of 1500 talents, which he is said to have expended on the completion of his basilica. By accepting this bribe he lost the confidence of all parties, and accordingly seems to have taken no part in the civil war between Pompey and Caesar. After the murder of the latter, in b. c. 44, Paullus joined the senatorial party ; and he was one of the senators who declared M. Lepidus a public enemy, on the 30th of June, b. c. 43, on account of his having joined Antony ; and, accordingly, when the triumvirate was formed in the autumn of the same year, his name was set down first in the proscription list by his own brother. The soldiers, however, who were appointed to kill him, allowed him to escape, probably with the connivance of his brother. He passed over to Brutus in Asia, and after the death of the latter repaired to Miletus. Here he remained, and refused to go to Rome, although he was pardoned by the triumvirs. As he is not mentioned again, he probably died soon afterwards. (Sall. Cat. 31 ; Schol. Bob. in Vatin. p. 320, ed. Orelli ; Cic. in Vatin. 10, ad Att. ii. 24, ad Qu. Fr. ii. 4, pro Mil. 9, ad Att. vi. 1, 3, ad Fam. viii. 4, 8, 10, 11, xv. 12, 13 ; Appian, B. C. ii. 26 ; Dion Cass. xl. 43, 63 ; Suet. Caes. 29 ; Plut. Caes. 29, Pomp. 58 ; Liv. Epit. 120 ; Appian, B. C. iv. 12, 37 ; Dion Cass, xlvii. 6 ; Vell. Pat. ii. 67.)

Aemilia26.jpg
COIN OF M. AEMILIUS PAULLUS.

The preceding coin contains on the obverse the head of Vesta, and on the reverse the Basilica Aemilia.

It has been already seen that Cicero says (ad Att. iv. 16) that Aemilius Paullus restored a basilica in the forum, and also commenced a new one. The former must have been the same as the one originally built by the censors M. Aemilius Lepidus and M. Fulvius Nobilior, in b. c. 179. As M. Fulvius seems to have had the principal share in its construction (Liv. xl. 51), it was generally called the Fulvia basilica (Plut. Caes. 29), sometimes the Aemilia et Fulvia (Varr L. L. vi. 2), but after the restoration by Aemilius Paullus, it was always called the Basilica Paulli or Aemilia. The restoration of this basilica was almost completed in b. c. 54, the year in which Cicero (l. c.) was writing. But the question where the new one was built is a very difficult one to answer. Most modem writers have supposed that the two basilicae were built by the side of one another in the forum ; but this seems hardly possible to have been the case, since we never find mention of more than one basilica Aemilia or Paulli in all the ancient writers. (Tac, Ann. iii. 72 ; Plin. H. N. xxxvi. 15, 24 ; Stat. Silv. i. 1. 29 ; Plut. Caes. 29, Galb. 26 ; Dion Cass. xlix. 42, liv. 24 ; Appian, B. C. ii. 26.) Becker, therefore, supposes (Handb. der Rom. Alterthümer, vol. i. pp. 301 — 306) that the new building, which Paullus commenced, was the same as the one afterwards called the Basilica Julia, more especially as Paullus is expressly said to have received money from Caesar for the erection of one of these basilicae. Cicero's letter (l. c.) certainly speaks as if the new basilica were to be built by Paullus at Caesar's expense ; and it may therefore be that the statement of Appian (B. C. ii. 26) and Plutarch (Caes. 29), that Paullus was bribed by Caesar in his consulship with a sum of 1500 talents, and that he expended this upon the basilica Aemilia, is not quite correct. The mistake, however, is a very natural one ; for though the 1500 talents, might have been appropriated to the erection of the new basilica, subsequent writers would naturally suppose that the money had been expended upon the building which bore the name of Aemilius Paullus in their own time. For a further discussion of this subject, which hardly belongs to the present work, the reader is referred to Becker (l. c.)

The basilica Aemilia in the forum was rebuilt at his own expense by Paullus Aemilius Lepidus [No. 19], the son of the present article, and dedicated in his consulship, b. c. 34 (Dion Cass. xlix. 42). It was burnt down twenty years afterwards, b. c. 14, by a fire, which also destroyed the temple of Vesta, and was rebuilt nominally by Paullus Lepidus, but in reality by Augustus and the friends of Paullus (Dion Cass. liv. 24). The new building was a most magnificent one ; its columns of Phrygian marble were especially celebrated (Plin. H. N. xxxvi. 15, 24). It was again repaired by Lepidus [No. 23] in the reign of Tiberius, a. d. 22 (Tac. Ann. iii. 72).


17. M. Aemilius M. f. Q. n. Lepidus, the triumvir, was the brother of the preceding [No. 16], and the son of No. 13. He was a lineal descendant of the pontifex maximus, M. Aemilius Lepidus, consul in b. c. 187 and 175, though, as we have seen, it is doubtful whether he was the abnepos or great-grandson of the latter, as Cicero calls him [see No. 7].

M. Lepidus is first mentioned in the year b. c. 52, when the senate appointed him interrex, after the death of Clodius, for the purpose of holding the comitia. Rome was almost in a state of anarchy ; and because Lepidus refused to hold the comitia for the election of the consuls, on the ground that it was not usual for the first interrex to do so, his house was attacked by the Clodian mobs, and he himself narrowly escaped with his life. On the breaking out of the civil war between Pompey and Caesar, b. c. 49, Lepidus, who was then praetor, joined the party of the latter ; and as the consuls had fled with Pompey from Italy, Lepidus, as praetor, was the highest magistrate remaining in Italy. Caesar accordingly, when he set out (or Spain, to carry on the war against Afranius and Petreius, left Lepidus nominally in charge of the city, though he really depended upon Antony for the preservation of peace in Italy. During Caesar's absence in Spain, Lepidus presided at the comitia, in which the former was appointed dictator, who was thus able to hold the consular comitia, which it would have been impossible for a praetor to have done.

In the following year, b. c. 48, Lepidus received the province of Nearer Spain, with the title of proconsul, and here displayed both the vanity and avarice which marked his character. Having compelled the proconsul Q. Cassius Longintis, in Further Spain, and his quaestor M. Marcellus, who were