Caesar's Women (Masters of Rome Series) by Colleen McCullough

By Colleen McCullough

His victories have been legend -- in conflict and bedchamber alike. Love used to be a political weapon he wielded cunningly and ruthlessly in his inner most warfare opposed to enemies within the discussion board. Genius, common, patrician, Gaius Julius Caesar was once heritage. His other halves got him effect. He sacrificed his cherished daughter at the modify of ambition. He burned for the cold-hearted mistress he might by no means dare belief. Caesar's ladies all knew -- and feared -- his energy. He loved them, used them, destroyed them on his impossible to resist upward push to prominence. And certainly one of them may seal his destiny.

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Open shutters looked out onto what was commonly regarded as a lovely garden, thanks to Gaius Matius in the other ground-floor apartment; his was the hand had found roses able to bloom in the shade, coaxed grapevines into scaling the twelve storeys of latticed walls and balconies, trimmed box bushes into perfect globes, and rigged a cunning gravity feed to the chaste marble pool that allowed a rearing two-tailed dolphin to spout water from its fearsome mouth. The walls of the reception room were well kept up and painted in the red style, the floor of cheap terrazzo had been burnished to an appealing reddish-pink glow, and the ceiling had been painted to simulate a cloud-fluffed noon sky, though it could claim no expensive gilding.

Oh, nothing much," he answered vaguely. "That's an evasion. " Her wide brow crinkled. " "You wouldn't know him, because he's not old enough to be in the Senate yet. " said Brutus proudly. Julia shrugged. "My father said it was stupid of him. " "Uncle Cato was in the right. Cato the Censor put the column there when he built Rome's first basilica, and there it belongs according to the mos maiorum. Cato the Censor allowed the tribunes of the plebs to use his building as their headquarters because he understood their plight—because they are magistrates elected by the Plebs alone, they don't represent the whole People, and can't use a temple as their headquarters.

That was why they loathed Pompey the Great, who fancied himself the present First Man in Rome. Well, he wouldn't last. The title belonged to Caesar, and nothing, animate or inanimate, would stop his taking it. He knew that because he knew himself. At dawn on the day after he arrived home, it was gratifying to discover that a tidy little band of clients had presented themselves to pay him their compliments; his reception room was full of them, and Eutychus the steward was beaming all over his fat face at sight of them.

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