Citizens! I Discharge You.

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“[Caesar] mustered the soldiers in the Campius Martius, and requested a statement of their grievances. Their demands appeared to have a reference to a payment of their dues, the bestowal of promised presents, and a release from further duty. Caesar well knew that the best way to humiliate an insurrection is to grant what it clamors for. He accordingly made an address to his old legion, being careful to begin with “Citizens,” instead of “Soldiers.” This was gall and wormwood. To be addressed as citizens by their beloved commander! “I discharge you.” said he. “You have had enough of fatigue and wounds. I release you from your oath. As to your presents, you shall be paid to the last sesterce.” The old veterans could stand no more. They burst into tears, and began to beg for forgiveness. With a certain prudent hesitation, Caesar received them back to favor; but he took care that the leaders who had fomented the mutiny should be executed."—Ridpath, 1885


Roman Empire


Ridpath, John Clark Cyclopedia of Universal History (Cincinnati, OH: The Jones Brothers Publishing CO., 1885)


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