Monday, 18 June 2012

CAESAR: "DE BELLO GALLICO": BOOK II

Introduction.


Book II of the "De Bello Gallico" describes the events of Caesar's second campaign in Gaul during the year 57 B.C., which was also the second year of his proconsular authority. In the previous year, his first as proconsul, Caesar had taken on, somewhat audaciously perhaps, both the Helvetii and then the Germans, and, despite the untried army under his command, had soundly defeated both, and had brought most of Celtic Gaul under his control. In 57 B.C. he set out to subdue the Belgic League of the North-East, whose tribes had a fearsome reputation for courage and warlike zeal. As the first part of the book indicates (see chapters 1-15),  his initial progress was astonishingly successful, and despite the determined resistance of all the Belgic tribes, save the Remi, who became and remained amongst the most solid of his allies, Caesar defeated tribe after tribe, including the Bellovaci, the most numerous and powerful Belgic state and the Suessiones, who were kinsmen to the Remi. However, when Caesar invades the lands of the Nervii, he encounters ferocious opposition, and at the battle on the river Sambre, recounted in great detail in chapters 20-27, he was ambushed, and was only able to extricate himself and his army from defeat after a period of desperate fighting. Together with the battle before Alesia in 52 B.C. and the battle of Munda in 45 B.C. during the Civil War, this battle on the Sambre was an occasion when the all-conquering Julius Caesar was close to defeat. In the end, however, Caesar was victorious once more, and the battle and this book ends with the total defeat of the Nervii. As Caesar honestly acknowledges at the end of chapter 20 much of the credit for this nail-biting victory was due to the courage and professionalism of his rank-and-file soldiers, who, when the necessary orders were lacking, stepped up and responded as the circumstances required. At the end of this year, therefore, it seems that Caesar's army had reached such a pitch of valour and effectiveness that it had acquired the characteristics of the irresistible force that it afterwards proved itself to be. 

In terms of literature, Book II has a number of memorable extracts, and provides many examples which display Caesar's remarkable ability to be writing what appears dispassionate and objective narrative composed in the third person, while in fact this account is providing a constant testimony to his strategic and tactical genius, as of course he intended that it should. Chapter 20 is the celebrated passage in which Caesar is portrayed as the guiding spirit behind all his army's actions: "Everything had to be done by Caesar at one and the same time". Chapter 25 provides an outstanding example of Latin's capacity for very long sentences, called "periods" in which both the sense and construction of the sentence are suspended between the subject, here "Caesar", and the first main verb, in this case, "processit" (advanced), which is not expressed until all the attendant circumstances have been introduced in the form of subordinate clauses, modifying phrases, ablative absolutes, etc. In this case there are one hundred and eighteen words between the subject and verb. The extraordinary length of this sentence (one hundred and thirty-seven words in all) has provided somewhat of a challenge to Sabidius' determination always to keep to the structure of the Latin sentence in his translation, but he has managed to do so, albeit at some cost to clarity perhaps, as the reader will find when he gets to the relevant chapter. The circumstances which this sentence recounts are grim and the situation critical, and this long period is a notable example of Caesar's ability to build up and maintain a tension, which is palpable, and which is eased only when the crescendo is reached, in which he himself  - who else indeed? - steps forward, sword in hand, to the rescue of his beleaguered men.

In this translation Sabidius has made use of the facilities provided by this blog to show all the main verbs in italics. At the end, he has once more compiled a detailed analysis of the instances in this book of the following three grammatical usages or constructions: ablative absolutes; gerunds and gerundives; and impersonal passives. The reader will be struck by the very uneven incidence of these instances across the book. This is most evident with regard to gerunds and gerundives, in respect of which sixteen of the forty instances appear in Chapters 20 and 21, after which there is no further instance until Chapter 28, and indeed only two more in the rest of the book after Chapter 21. Turning to instances of the ablative absolute construction, these are relatively numerous throughout this book, although the total of eighty-three is somewhat less than the one hundred and seventeen in Book III. However, the incidence of ablative absolutes is in fact quite sparse in much of the book, particularly in the first ten chapters, and in five chapters there are none at all. On the other hand there are five each in Chapters 11 and 12, six in Chapter 17 and as many as eleven in Chapter 25. Even in the case of the relatively rare incidence of the impersonal passive, six of the seventeen in this book are to be found in Chapters 31-33. No doubt there are some specific reasons for the uneven incidence of these three types of construction. For instance the ten gerundives in Chapter 20 represent the list of those things which Caesar had to do all at the one time to  save the situation when his army was ambushed by the Nervii on the river Sambre, and the eleven absolute absolutes in Chapter 25 assist his enumeration of all the difficulties with which he and his men were confronted when this battle reached its critical point. Nevertheless, one has a suspicion that Caesar can forget a construction for a while, until a sudden obvious usage triggers a flood of similar instances for a time. This is perhaps most evident with regard to Chapter 21, which features seven gerundives and two gerunds, although there is no such obvious reason for their usage as  in the previous chapter, where, as has been noted, there were ten gerundives. Then, there are none at all in the following six chapters. Did Caesar forget them for a time?

In his translation of Book II, Sabidius has followed the Latin text contained in "Caesar - Gallic War II & III", edited by W.G. Rutherford, M.A., LL.D., first published by Macmillans' in the 'Elementary Classics' series in 1879. Sabidius has made use of the notes appended to this version, and also to the notes to the edition of "Caesar's Gallic War", edited by J.B. Greenhough et al. and published by Ginn & Co. in 1898. It is perhaps of interest to the reader that at times these authorities are at variance in their interpretations. 

THE SUBJUGATION OF THE WESTERN BELGAE (Chapters 1-15).

Chapter 1. 


When Caesar was in winter quarters in Hither (i.e. Cisalpine) Gaul, just as we have shown above, frequent reports were brought to him, and he was also informed (lit. made more sure) by despatches from (lit. of) Labienus that all the Belgae, who as we have said are a third part of Gaul, were conspiring (lit. swearing oaths together) against the Roman people and giving hostages to one another (lit. between themselves). That the reasons for their conspiring were these: firstly, because they feared lest, all of (Celtic) Gaul having been subdued, our army might be led against them; next, because they were stirred up by several of the Gauls, some who, as they had been unwilling for the Germans to remain any longer in Gaul, so they took it ill (lit. bore it with difficulty) that the army of the Roman people should winter and become settled (lit. grow old) in Gaul, (and) others who through instability and fickleness of mind were eager for new ruling powers, (and they were stirred up) by several also, because the royal power in Gaul was generally seized by the more powerful men and those who had the means for men being hired, who could less easily attain that object under our dominion.

Chapter 2.

Disturbed by these reports and despatches, Caesar levied two new legions in Hither (i.e. Cisalpine) Gaul, and at the beginning of summer (lit. summer having been entered upon) he sent his legate Quintus Pedius into inner Gaul. He himself, as soon as there began to be plenty of fodder, came to the army. He gave a commission to the Senones and to the other Gauls who were neighbours to the Belgae to find out those things which were being done and to inform him of these disturbances (lit. matters). They unanimously all  reported that forces were being gathered and brought together in one place.Then indeed he did not think that he should hesitate, to (lit. but that he should) set out towards them. A corn supply having been provided, he struck (lit. moved) camp and in about fifteen days he arrived at the territories of the Belgae.

Chapter 3.

When he arrived thither unexpectedly and faster than anyone could have thought (lit. than every expectation), the Remi, who are the nearest of the Belgae to (Celtic) Gaul, sent their chief citizens Iccius and Andecumborius to him (as) legates, to say that were entrusting themselves and all their possessions into the protection (lit. good  faith) and into the power of the Roman people, and that they had neither made common cause with the rest of the Belgae nor had they conspired against the Roman people, and that they were both ready to give hostages and to undertake his commands, and both to receive (him) in their strongholds and to help (him) with corn and other necessaries (lit. things); that all the rest of the Belgae were in arms, and that the Germans, who dwelt on the other side of the Rhine had joined themselves with them, and the madness of them all was so great that they could not deter even the Suessiones, their brothers and kinsmen, who enjoyed the same rights and the same laws (and) who had one government and one magistracy (together) with themselves, from combining (lit. but that they were combining) with them.

Chapter 4.

When he enquired from them what states were in arms and what strength they had in war, he learned the following information (lit. thus): that the majority of the Belgae were sprung from the Germans, and, having been led across the Rhine many years ago, they had settled there on account of the fertility of the country, and had driven out the Gauls who inhabited those regions,  and that they were the only people who, in the memory of our fathers, the whole of Gaul having been overrun (lit. harassed), had prevented the Teutones and the Cimbri from entering within their borders; in consequence of this fact it happened that, from their recollection of those events, they assumed to themselves great authority and great arrogance in military matters. The Remi said that they had everything ascertained, on account of the fact that, united by ties of kinship and by marriage alliances, they knew (lit. had found out) how great a number each (representative) in the general council of the Belgae had promised for that war. That the Bellovaci were the most powerful among them in valour, in influence and in number of men: that they could muster a hundred thousand armed men, (and had) promised sixty (thousand) picked men out of that number, (and) were demanding command of the whole war for themselves. That the Suesssiones were their (nearest) neighbours; that they possessed very extensive  territories and very fertile fields. That among them, even within our memory, Divitiacus, the most powerful man in all Gaul, who had both held the government of a great part of these regions and also of Britain, had been king: now Galba was their king: the supreme (command) of the whole war had been conveyed to him by the consent of all on account of his integrity and wisdom; that they had twelve towns in number (and) that they had promised fifty thousand armed men; that the Nervii, who were considered the most warlike (lit. fierce) among them and are the furthest distant (from them), (had promised) just as many; that the Atrebates (had promised) fifteen thousand, the Ambiani ten thousand, the Morini twenty-five thousand, the Menapii seven thousand, the Caleti ten thousand, the Veliocasses and the Viromandui the same number, (and) the Aduatuci nineteen thousand; that (they) thought that the Condrusi, the Eburones, the Caeroesi, (and) the Paemani, who are called by the single name Germans, (had promised) up to forty thousand.

Chapter 5.

Caesar, having exhorted the Remi (to be loyal) and having honoured (them) with a speech, bade their whole senate to assemble to (meet) him, and the children of their chiefs to be brought to him (as) hostages. All these things were performed by them punctiliously to the day. He himself, earnestly exhorting Divitiacus the Aeduan, informed (him) how greatly it mattered to the republic and to their common safety that the contingents of the enemy were kept apart, so that they should not have to contend (lit. it was not needing to be fought) with so great a multitude at one time. This, (he said), could be done, if the Aedui were to lead their forces into the lands of the Bellovaci and begin to ravage their fields. These things having been commissioned, he dismissed him from his presence (lit. from himself). After he had perceived that all of the Belgae, having been gathered together in one place, were coming to (meet) him, and had discovered  from those scouts, whom he had sent (out), and from the Remi that they were not then far off, he promptly led (lit. hastened to lead) his army across the river Aisne, which is on the edge of the territories of the Remi, and pitched camp there. This position both fortified one side of the camp by the banks of the river and rendered (those things) which were behind him safe from the enemy, and (at the same time) ensured provisions could be brought to him without danger by the Remi and the other states. Over (lit. on) that river there was a bridge. There he placed a bridgehead (lit. guard), and on the other side of the river he left his legate Quintus Titurius Sabinus with six cohorts; he ordered (him) to fortify this camp with a rampart twelve feet in height and with a ditch eighteen feet (in breadth).

Chapter 6.

From this camp a town of the Remi, Bibrax by name, was eight miles (lit. eight thousand paces) distant.  The Belgae began to attack this on their march with great vigour. The attack on that day was (only) withstood with great difficulty (lit. it was scarcely withstood). The (mode of) attacking of the Gauls, (being) the same as (that) of the Belgae, is this. When, a host of men having been thrown around all the walls, stones had begun to be cast against the wall on all sides, and the wall had been stripped of its defenders, a tortoise-shell having been formed, they came up to the gates and undermined the wall. This happened easily on this occasion. For, while so great a number of men were throwing stones and darts, no one could keep his foothold on the wall (lit. the power of standing on the wall was to no one). When night had made an end of the assault, Iccius, a Reman of very great nobility and influence among his own people, who was at that time in command of the town, (and who was) one of those who had come to Caesar (as) ambassadors (to sue) for peace, sent a message to him;  (this said that) unless  assistance were sent to him he could not hold out any longer.

Chapter 7.

Thither Caesar in the middle of the night, employing (as) their guides the same men who had come from Iccius (as) messengers, sent (some) Numidian and Cretan archers and (some) Balearic slingers as a relief for the townspeople; on their arrival, both an enthusiasm for fighting on, (together) with a hope of defence, came to the Remi, and for the same reason the expectation of the town being won abandoned the enemy. Therefore, having lingered for a short time before the town and having ravaged the fields of the Remi, all the villages and buildings, which they could enter, having been burned, they hastened to Caesar's camp and pitched their camp less than two miles (lit. thousand paces) away; this camp, as was indicated by the smoke and fires, extended (lit. lay open) for more than eight miles (lit. thousand paces) in breadth.

Chapter 8.

At first Caesar determined to refrain from battle both on account of the great number of the enemy and on account of their excellent reputation for valour; daily, however, in cavalry actions he tried (to prove) what the enemy could effect by their prowess, and what our men would dare. When he realised that our men were not inferior, the place in front of the camp (being) convenient and suitable by its nature for a battle-line to be drawn up, because that hill, where the camp was placed, rising a very little from the plain, extended (lit. lay open) in breadth right in front (of the enemy) over as much ground as a marshalled battle-line could occupy, and had lateral slopes (lit. slopes on the side) in each direction, and, gently sloping in front, sank gradually to the plain, he drew on either side of that hill a cross trench (i.e. a trench athwart the hill) of about four hundred paces, and at the ends of the trenches he established forts and located his artillery-engines there, lest, when he had drawn up his battle-line, the enemy because they were so powerful in their great number of men, might circumvent his men fighting on the flanks. This having been done, (and) the two legions which he had levied most recently having been left in the camp, in order that, if there were a need anywhere, they could be drawn on as a reserve, he stationed the other six legions in battle-order in front of the camp. Likewise the enemy had led out of camp and drawn up their forces (lit. had drawn up their forces, [which had been] led out of camp) (as well).

Chapter 9.

There was a marsh, not a great (one), between our army and (that) of the enemy. The enemy were waiting (to see) if our men would cross this; our men, however, were in arms ready to attack (them) while they were  disadvantaged (lit. having been hindered) if they should begin to cross (lit. if a beginning of crossing should be made by them). In the meantime, a cavalry battle was being fought (lit. it was being fought in a cavalry battle) between the two battle-lines. When neither (side) began to cross (lit. made a beginning of crossing), the engagement of the cavalry (being) quite favourable to our men, Caesar led his army back to the camp. The enemy immediately hastened from that place to the river Aisne, which it has been pointed out was behind our camp. Fords having been discovered there, they tried to lead a part of their forces across (it) with this design, that they might, if they could, storm the fort, which the legate Quintus Titurius was commanding, and cut off the bridge; if they could not (do that), they would lay waste the lands of the Remi, which were of great use to us for waging the war (lit. the war being waged), and might hinder our men in (gathering) supplies.

Chapter 10.

Caesar, having been informed (lit. made more sure) by Titurius, led all his cavalry and light-armed Numidians (lit. Numidians of light armour), slingers and archers over the bridge, and hastened towards them. There was a fierce battle (lit. it was fiercely fought) in that place. Our men, attacking the enemy, while they were at a disadvantage (lit. having been hindered) in the river, slew a great number of them: by a welter of missiles  they drove back the rest (while they were) attempting very recklessly to cross over their bodies; they surrounded with cavalry and killed those men (lit. they killed those men having been surrounded with cavalry) who had crossed first. The enemy, when they realised that their hopes had been deceived both with regard to the town being stormed and with regard to the river being crossed, and they did not see our men advancing to a more unfavourable place for the purpose of fighting, and the corn supply began to fail them, an assembly having been summoned, determined that it was best for each (chieftain) to return to his own home and (resolved to) assemble from all quarters for the purpose of defending those (lit. those being defended) into whose territories the Romans had first introduced their army, so that they might fight in their own, rather than in foreign, territories, and enjoy domestic supplies of the provision of corn. (Together) with other reasons, this consideration also led them to this view, that they had found out that Divitiacus and the Aedui were approaching the territories of the Bellovaci. They could not be persuaded (lit. it could not be persuaded to them) to stay any longer and (so) not to bring help to their own people.

Chapter 11.

That matter having been determined, marching out of their camp at the second watch with great noise and confusion in no fixed order and under no command, since each man sought the first place in the journey for  himself and hastened to reach home, they made (it) so that their departure seemed like a flight. This situation having been immediately learned of, Caesar, fearing an ambush, because he had not yet ascertained for what reason they were departing, kept his army and cavalry within the camp. At daybreak (lit. first light), the circumstances having been confirmed by his scouts, he sent forward all his cavalry to delay the rear of their column. He appointed his legates Quintus Pedius and Lucius Aurunculeius Cotta to command them, (and) he ordered his legate Titus Labienus to follow (them) closely with three legions. These, attacking their rearguard and pursuing them for many miles (lit. thousands of paces), cut down a great number of them (as they were) fleeing, while at the very rear of their column, those against whom they had come (lit. it was come) stood their ground and bravely withstood the attack of our soldiers, (but) the vanguard, because they seemed to be far away from the danger and were not bound by any necessity or command, the outcry having been heard (and) the ranks having been broken, all placed their safety in flight. Thus, without any risk (to themselves), our men killed as great a number of them as the course of the day was long, (but) at sunset (lit. the setting of the sun) they stopped and returned (lit. betook themselves) to the camp, as they had been ordered (lit. it had been commanded).

Chapter 12. 

On the day after that day, before the enemy could recover themselves from their terror and flight, Caesar led his army into the territory of the Suessiones, who were nearest to the Remi, and, a forced (lit. great) march having been acconplished, he hastened to the town (of) Noviodunum. Having attempted to assault it on his march, because he heard that it was unoccupied by (sufficient) defenders, he could not storm (it) on account of the breadth of its ditch and the height of its wall, (though) few (were) defending (it). The camp having been fortified, he began to bring up mantlets and (those things) which were of use for the assault. In the meantime, the whole host of the Suessiones, (coming) from their flight, came together into the town on the next night. The mantlets having been swiftly brought up against the town, a mound having been thrown up and towers built, the Gauls, alarmed by the extent of these works, which they had neither seen nor heard of before, sent envoys to Caesar with regard to their surrender, and, the Remi requesting that they might be spared, they obtained this request.

Chapter 13.

Caesar, the chief men of the state and (even) the two sons of King Galba having been accepted (as) hostages, and all the arms in the town having been handed over, received the Suessiones into a surrender, and led his army into the (territories of the) Bellovaci. When they had conveyed themselves and all their possessions into the town of Brantuspantium, and Caesar with his army was about five miles (lit. thousand paces) from that town, all the old men (lit. elders by birth), going out from the town, began to stretch (out) their hands to Caesar and to intimate by their voice that they were giving (themselves) into his protection (lit. good faith) and power, and were not contending in arms against the Roman people. Likewise, when he had come up to the town and pitched his camp there, the children (lit. boys) and women on the wall with outstretched hands, after their own custom, begged peace from the Romans.

Chapter 14.

On their behalf Divitiacus (for after the departure of the Belgae, the forces of the Aedui having been disbanded, he had returned to him), spoke (as follows) (lit. composed these words): that the Bellovaci had at all times been in the alliance and friendship of the Aeduan state: that, urged on by their chiefs, who said that the Aedui, having been reduced to slavery by Caesar, were enduring all (kinds of) indignity and insult, (they) had both defected from the Aeduans and had made war upon the Roman people. That (those) who had been the leaders of that plot, because they realised how great a disaster they had brought upon the state, had fled to Britain. That not only the Bellovaci, but also the Aedui on their behalf, were entreating (him) to exercise his (accustomed) clemency and restraint towards them. That, if he did this, he would increase the influence of the Aedui among all the Belgae; that by their assistance and resources, they had been accustomed to  hold out, if any wars occurred.

Chapter 15. 

Caesar said that by reason of his respect for Divitiacus and the Aedui he would receive them into his protection and would spare (them); (but) because their state was of great influence among the Belgae and was pre-eminent in the number of its population he demanded six hundred hostages. These having been delivered, and all the arms having been collected from the town, he went from that place to the territories of the Ambiani, who without delay surrendered themselves and all their possessions. The Nervii bordered upon their territories; when Caesar enquired about their character and habits, he discovered as follows (lit. thus): that there was no access for merchants to them; that they suffered no wine and other things pertaining to luxury to be imported, because they thought that through these things minds become enervated and courage impaired; that they were a savage people and of great bravery; that they derided and condemned the rest of the Belgae, who had surrendered themselves to the Roman people and had cast aside their ancestral valour; that (they) declared that they would neither send ambassadors nor accept any conditions of peace.

THE DEFEAT OF THE NERVII (Chapters 16-28).

Chapter 16.

When he had made a march through their territories for three days, he learned from (some) prisoners that the river Sambre was not more than ten miles (lit. thousand paces) away from his camp: that all the Nervii had encamped across that river, and together with their neighbours, the Atrebates and the Viromandui, were there awaiting the arrival of the Romans (for they had persuaded both these [tribes] to try the same fortunes of war [as themselves]); that the forces of the Aduatuci were also expected by them and were on the march: that they had put their women and (those) who through age appeared useless for war into such a place whither there was no access for an army on account of the marshes.

Chapter 17.

These things having been learned of, he sent forward scouts and centurions to choose a suitable place for a camp. Since a considerable number of the Belgae (who had) surrendered and other Gauls following Caesar marched (lit. made the march) together (with him), certain of these, as was afterwards learned from prisoners, the usual practice of our army's march during these days having been carefully noted, went to the Nervii at night and showed to them that a great number of baggage animals passed (lit. lay) between the several legions, and that there would not be any difficulty, when the first legion had come into the camp and the other legions were (still) a great distance off, to attack that (legion while it was) under baggage; that, this (legion) having been routed and the baggage having been plundered, it would come to pass (lit. would be) that the others would not dare to stand their ground against (them). It also assisted the plan of those who reported the information that the Nervii from early times, since they were not at all strong in cavalry (for not [even] to this day do they pay attention to this service, but whatever they can do, their strength lies [lit. they are strong] in infantry forces), so that they might the more easily hamper their neighbours' cavalry, if they came upon them for the sake of  plundering, trees (when) young having been notched and bent over, their branches having grown out thick sideways and brambles and thorns having been interposed, had effected (it) so that these hedges offered a fortification like a wall, into which it was not only not possible to enter (lit. that it be entered) but  (which it was) not even (possible) to see through (lit. that it be seen through). Since the march of our men would be obstructed by these things, the Nervii did not think that this advice should be neglected (by them).

Chapter 18.

The nature of the place, which location our men had chosen for the camp, was this. A hill, sloping downwards evenly from the top, descended to the river Sambre, which we have mentioned above. From this river there rose (lit. was born) a hill opposite to the former and on the other side (of the stream), (and) open for about two hundred paces at its foot, (but) woody along its upper part, such that it could not easily be seen through into its interior. Within these woods the enemy kept themselves in concealment; a few pickets of cavalry appeared on the open ground along the river. The depth of the river was about three feet.

Chapter 19.

The cavalry having been sent forth, Caesar followed close behind with all his forces; but the arrangement and order of the column was different from what (lit. had itself otherwise [than] as) the Belgae had reported. For as he was approaching the enemy, Caesar, in accordance with his custom, was leading six legions unencumbered (with baggage); behind them he had placed the baggage-train of the whole army; then the two legions which had been levied latest were closing the whole column and were (acting as) an escort for the baggage-train. Our horsemen with the slingers and archers, having crossed the river, joined battle with the enemy's cavalry. While they withdrew (lit. betook themselves) repeatedly into the woods to their own men and again made an attack out of the wood upon our men, and our men dared not to follow (them) as they withdrew (lit. withdrawing) further than the limit to which the open ground extended in its stretch (lit. stretching), in the meantime the six legions which had arrived first, the works having already been measured out, began to fortify the camp. When the head (lit. first part) of the baggage-train of our army was seen by those who were lying hidden in the woods, which they had agreed between themselves (as) the time for battle to be joined, so, when they had settled their battle-line and ranks and they had encouraged one another (lit. themselves) (to act), they rushed forth suddenly with all their forces and made an attack upon our cavalry. The latter having been easily routed and thrown into confusion, they ran down to the river with incredible speed, such that the enemy seemed (to be) near the woods and in the river and now at close quarters with us (lit. within [reach of] our hands) at almost one (and the same) time. Moreover, with the same speed they hastened straight up the hill towards our camp and those men who were engaged in the (fortification) works.

Chapter 20.

Everything was needing to be done by Caesar at one (and the same) time: the standard, which was the sign when it is necessary to stand to arms (lit. for it to be run together) (was) needing to be displayed, the signal (was) needing to be given by the trumpet, the soldiers (were) needing to be recalled from the (fortification) works, (those men) who had proceeded a little further (afield) for the sake of (material for) the rampart being sought (were) needing to be summoned, the battle-line (was) needing to be drawn up, the soldiers (were) needing to be encouraged, (and) the signal (for action) (was) needing to be given. The shortness of time and the advance of the enemy hindered a great part of these arrangements. Under these difficulties two things were of assistance, (firstly) the skill and experience of the soldiers, because, having been trained by means of previous battles, they could prescribe to themselves what ought to be done no less readily than (they could) be told by others, and (secondly) that Caesar had forbidden each of his legates to depart from the works and their several legions unless the camp had been (lit. having been) fortified. They, on account of the proximity and speed of the enemy, waited no longer for Caesar's command, but by themselves organised whatever seemed (appropriate).

Chapter 21.

The necessary things having been ordered, Caesar ran down, for the purpose of the soldiers being exhorted, into whatever quarter chance presented (them), and came to the tenth legion. Having encouraged the soldiers with a speech no longer than that they should retain the memory of their previous valour and not be alarmed in their minds, and that they should withstand the enemy's attack bravely, he gave the signal for battle to be joined. And, having set out for another quarter for the sake of exhorting likewise, he encountered (men already) fighting. So great was the shortness of time and so prepared (was) the mind of the enemy for fighting that time was wanting not only for the military insignia to be fitted but even for their helmets to be put on and the leather cases (lit. covers) to be pulled off from their shields. To whatever quarter anyone came by chance from the (fortification) works, whatever standards he saw first he took his stand at these, lest in looking for his own (standards) (lit. in his own [standards] being sought) he should lose time for fighting.

Chapter 22.

The army having been drawn up, rather as the nature of the ground and the slope of the hill and the exigency of time than as the method and order of military matters demanded, when, the legions having been turned in different directions, some were resisting the enemy (in one quarter, others) in another quarter, and, the very thick hedges having intervened (lit. having been interposed), their view was obstructed, neither could the regular reserves be posted nor (could) what was necessary in each part (of the field) be arranged, nor (could) all the commands be issued by (only) one man. So, in such an unfavourable state of affairs the various events of fortune followed too.

Chapter 23.

The soldiers of the ninth and tenth legions, as they had taken their stand on the left-hand side of the battle-line, their javelins having been despatched, speedily drove the Atrebates [for that section had been opposed to them], (who were) breathless with running and fatigue and worn out by their wounds, from the higher ground  into the river and, following (them) as they attempted (lit. attempting) to cross, slew with their swords a great part of them hampered (as they were). They did not hesitate to cross themselves, and advancing to a disadvantageous position, the battle having been renewed, they threw into flight the enemy when they again made a stand (lit. resisting again). Likewise, in another quarter two legions, the eleventh and the eighth, facing (lit. having been turned) in a different direction, the Viromandui, with whom they had come into conflict, having been dashed down from the higher ground, were continuing to fight on the very banks of the river. But the camp having been exposed almost entirely in the front and on the left side, since the twelfth legion had taken up position on the right wing and the seventh at no great distance from it, all the Nervii in very close column, with Boduognatus, who held the supreme command, (as) their leader, hastened towards that position; some of them began to surround the legions on their unprotected (lit. open) flank, and  others (began) to make for the highest point of the camp.

Chapter 24.

At the same time our cavalry and light-armed infantry (lit. infantry with light armour), who had been together with those whom, (as) I have said, (had been) repulsed by the first attack of the enemy, since they were retreating (lit. betaking themselves) to the camp, met the enemy face to face and again sought flight to another part (of the field), and the camp-servants, who from the decuman (i.e. the rear) gate and the highest ridge of the hill had observed our men crossing the river (as) victors, and when, having gone out for the sake of plundering, they had looked back and had seen the enemy moving around in our camp, they entrusted themselves to headlong flight. At the same time there arose the shouting and uproar of those who were coming with the baggage-train, and, panic-stricken, they betook (themselves) some (in one direction), (some) in another direction. The cavalry of the Treviri, whose reputation for courage among the Gauls is extraordinary, (and) who had come to Caesar, having been sent by their state as (lit. for the purpose of) auxiliaries, having been alarmed, when they had seen our camp being filled by a large number of the enemy, our legions hard pressed and, almost surrounded, being held back, (and) the camp-servants, horsemen, slingers (and) Numidians, divided and scattered, fleeing in all directions, despairing of our affairs (lit. our affairs having been despaired of), hastened home; they reported to their state that the Romans (had been) repulsed and conquered, (and) that the enemy were in possession of their camp and baggage-train.

Chapter 25.

From an exhortation of the tenth legion, having set out for the right wing, when he perceived that his men were hard pressed and, the standards of the twelfth legion having been gathered into one place, that the closely packed soldiers were themselves a hindrance to one another in the fight, all the centurions of the fourth cohort having been slain and the standard-bearer killed, the standard having been lost, almost all the centurions of the other cohorts having been either wounded or slain, among these the chief centurion (lit. first [centurion] of the javelin-throwers), Publius Sextius Baculus, a very valiant man, having been (so) exhausted by his many severe wounds that he could no longer stand up  (lit. support himself), that the rest were rather slow and some, the battle having been abandoned, were retiring (from the fray) and avoiding the missiles, that the enemy at the front were not stopping coming up from the lower ground and were pressing hard on each flank, that the situation was in a desperate strait and that there was no reserve which could be brought up, a shield having been snatched up (by him) from one of the soldiers from the rear ranks, because he had come thither without a shield, Caesar advanced into the front of the battle-line, and, the centurions having been addressed by name, (and) exhorting the rest of the soldiers, he ordered (them) to advance (lit. carry forward the standards) and extend the companies, so that (lit. whereby) they might employ their swords more easily. On his arrival, hope having been brought to the soldiers and their spirits refreshed, when each man on his own behalf in the sight of his commander desired to do his utmost (lit. to do his work vigorously) even in his own extreme peril, the attack of the enemy was somewhat (lit. a little) checked.

Chapter 26.

When he had perceived that the seventh legion, which had taken up its position close (to him), was also hard pressed, Caesar advised the military tribunes (lit. tribunes of the soldiers) to bring the legions gradually together with each other (lit. themselves), and (then) wheeling around to advance (lit. to bear turned standards) against the enemy. This having been done, since the one brought assistance to the other, and they were no (longer) fearing lest they were surrounded by the enemy in the rear (lit. having been turned away), they began to stand their ground more boldly and to fight more bravely. In the meantime, the soldiers of the two legions (i.e. the thirteenth and the fourteenth), which had been in the rear of the column as a guard for the baggage-train, the battle having been reported to them, and their pace having been quickened (lit. aroused), were seen by the enemy on the top of the hill, and Titus Labienus, having taken possession of the enemy's camp, and having observed what things were being done in our camp, sent the tenth legion as a relief to our men. They (i.e the soldiers of the tenth legion), when they had learned from the flight of the horsemen and the camp-servants in what a position our situation was and in what great danger the camp and the legions and their commander were placed, left nothing undone (lit. effected nothing of a remainder for themselves) by way of speed.

Chapter 27.

By their arrival so great a reversal of the situation was effected, that our men, even (those) who, weakened  by their wounds, had fallen down, renewed the fight leaning on their shields; (and that) next the camp-servants, seeing the enemy panic-stricken, even (though) unarmed engaged (them) armed, and, indeed, the cavalry, so  that they might, by their valour, obliterate the disgrace of their flight, thrust themselves before the legionary soldiers in all the areas of the battle. But the enemy, even in the very last hope of safety, displayed such courage that, when the foremost of them had fallen, the next stood on (them) prostrate, and fought from (on top of) their bodies; (and that) these men having been thrown down, and their corpses having been heaped up, (those) who survived cast their spears at at our men as if from a mound, and intercepted and returned our javelins (lit. returned our javelins, [which they had] intercepted), so that it ought to be judged that not without good reason did men of such great courage dare to cross a very broad river, climb very steep banks, and come up to a most disadvantageous place; their greatness of spirit had rendered these actions (lit. things) easy instead of (being) very difficult.

Chapter 28.

This battle having been concluded (lit. undertaken), and the tribe and (indeed) the name of the Nervii having been reduced almost to extermination, the old men (lit. elders by birth), whom, as we have stated, (had been) collected together with the children (lit. boys) and women into the estuaries and marshes, the (result of) this battle having been reported (to them), since they considered that nothing (was) an obstacle to the victors and that nothing (was) safe to the conquered, sent envoys to Caesar, with the consent of all who had survived, and surrendered themselves to him, and in the calamity of their state being recounted said that they had been reduced from six hundred to three senators, and that from sixty thousand men (they had been reduced) to scarcely five hundred who could bear arms. These Caesar, so that he might seem to extend mercy to the wretched and the suppliant, spared most carefully, and he bade (them) enjoy their own territories and towns, and commanded their neighbours to restrain themselves and their (dependants) from (offering them any) injury and outrage.

THE CONQUEST OF THE ADUATUCI (Chapters 29-33).

Chapter 29.

When the Aduatuci, concerning whom we have written above, were on their way (lit. coming) with all their forces as a support to the Nervii, the (result of) this battle having been reported (to them) on their march, they returned home; all their towns and forts having been abandoned, they conveyed all their possessions into one stronghold excellently fortified by nature. Although this had on all sides in its circumference very high rocks and views, a gently ascending approach not more than two hundred feet in breadth was left on one side; they had fortified the place with a very high double wall; then they had placed stones of a great weight and sharpened stakes on the wall. They themselves were descended from the Cimbri and the Teutones, who, when they were making their march into our province and Italy, those (parts of) their baggage-trains that they could not drive or carry with them having been deposited on this side of the Rhine (i.e. the west bank), they left of their people a guard (of attendants) and six thousand (fighting) men with (them) as a garrison. They, having, after the destruction of their (compatriots), been harassed for many years by their neighbours, when sometimes they waged war and sometimes they warded off (war) having been waged against (them), peace having been made with the consent of them all, they chose this place as their dwelling.


Chapter 30.

And, on the first arrival of our army, they made frequent sallies from the town and contended with our men in trifling skirmishes; afterwards, having been fortified all around by a rampart twelve feet (in height and) fifteen miles (lit. thousand [paces]) in circumference with frequent forts, they kept themselves within the town. When, mantlets having been brought up, (and) a mound having been heaped up, they saw that a tower was being built at a distance, at first they mocked (us) from the wall and even taunted us with their voices, because (as they said) so vast a machine was being constructed at so great a distance away; for with what hands or with what strength could they, especially (being) men of such small stature [for our shortness (of height) compared with the great size of their bodies was generally the object of contempt among all the Gauls] trust themselves to place a tower of such great weight upon their wall?

Chapter 31.

But when they saw that it was being moved and was approaching their walls, startled by the strange and extraordinary sight, they sent their envoys to Caesar (to sue) for peace, who, speaking in this manner, (spoke thus): that they thought that the Romans waged war not without divine help, inasmuch as they could move forward machines of so great a height with such speed, (and) they said that they surrendered themselves and all their possessions to his power. That they begged and prayed for one thing (only): if by chance he should resolve, in accordance with his (accustomed) clemency and humanity, which they had heard about from others, that the Aduatuci should be spared (lit. were to be spared), that he should not deprive them of their arms. that almost all their neighbours were enemies to them and envied their courage; that, their arms having been given up, they could not defend themselves from them. That it was better for them, if they should be reduced to that extremity, to suffer any fate from the Roman people than to be killed through torture by those among whom they had been accustomed to be the masters.

Chapter 32.

To these things Caesar replied (thus): that he, more in accordance with his custom than their deserts, would spare their state, if they should have surrendered themselves before the battering-ram should have touched their wall: but that there was no condition of surrender except upon their arms having been given up. That he should do (for them) what (lit. that which) he had done for the Nervii, and that he should command their neighbours not to offer any injury to those who had capitulated to the Roman people. The matter having been reported to their compatriots, they said that they would do what they had been commanded. A great mass of weapons having been thrown from the wall into the ditch, which was before the town, such that the heaps of arms almost equalled he top of the wall and the height of the mound, and yet about a third part having been concealed and retained in the town, as it was ascertained subsequently, the gates having been opened, they enjoyed peace on that day.


Chapter 33.

Towards evening, Caesar ordered the gates to be shut and the soldiers to go out of the town, lest the townspeople should receive any injury from the soldiers in the night. In accordance with a plan entered upon beforehand, as it was learned (later), because they believed, their surrender having been made, that our men would dismiss the guards or at least keep watch more carelessly, partly with those arms which they had kept and concealed, partly with shields made from bark or from plaited (lit. interwoven) osiers, which they had hastlily covered with skins, as the exigency of time required, on the third watch, they (i.e. the Aduatuci) suddenly made a sally from the town with all their forces (in the direction) where the ascent to our fortifications seemed least difficult. The signal having been speedily given by fires, as Caesar had ordered previously, a rush was made (lit. it was rushed) thither (by our men) from the nearest fort, and the enemy fought (lit. it was fought by the enemy) as fiercely as it ought to have been fought by brave men in the last hope of safety on unfavourable ground against those who were throwing missiles from a rampart and towers, since all hope of safety lay in their courage alone.  Around four thousand having been slain, the rest were forced back into the town. On the day after that day, the gates having been broken open, since there was no one defending (them), and our men having been sent in, Caesar sold the state-lot of that town in a lump. The number of persons was reported to him by those who had bought (them) (as) fifty-three thousand.

SUBMISSION OF THE SEA-BOARD AND RESULTS OF THE CAMPAIGN (Chapters 34-35).

Chapter 34.

At the same time he was informed (lit. made more certain) by Publius (Licinius) Crassus, whom he had sent with one legion against the Veneti, the Venelli, the Osismi, the Curiosolites, the Esubii, the Aulerci, (and) the Redoni, which are maritime states and touch upon the (Atlantic) Ocean, that all those states had been brought under (lit. into) the authority and power of the Roman people.

Chapter 35.

These things having been done, (and) the whole of Gaul having been subdued, so great an impression of this war was conveyed to the barbarians that ambassadors were sent to Caesar by those nations who dwelt across the Rhine, to promise that they would give hostages and perform his commands. Because he was hastening to Italy and Illyricum, he ordered these embassies to return to him, at the beginning of next summer (lit. next summer having been entered upon). His legions having been led into winter huts among the Carnutes, the Andes, and the Turones, states, which were close to those places where he had waged war, Caesar, himself, set out for Italy; in consequence of Caesar's despatches, a thanksgiving of fifteen days was decreed on account of these events, (something) which before that time had happened to no one.

APPENDIX.  INSTANCES OF CERTAIN GRAMMATICAL CONSTRUCTIONS FAVOURED BY CAESAR.

A.  Ablative Absolutes: (83)

Before studying the analysis below readers are invited to look first at Sabidius' article entitled "Ablative Absolutes" on this blog dated 20th May 2012. In the analysis below the reference of each instance is given in relation to the line of each chapter of the text which Sabidius has used (see above introduction). Both the Latin and a literal English translation follow. Then a more colloquial English rendering is suggested with the grammatical form of each indicated in brackets.)

Chapter 1: (1)

l.8:  omni Gallia placata:  1) lit. all (Celtic) Gaul, having been subdued; 2) colloq. after all Gaul was subdued. (Temporal clause.)

Chapter 2 : (2)

l.4:  inita aestate:  1) lit. summer having been entered upon;  2) colloq. at the beginning of summer. (Prepositional phrase.)

l.13:  re frumentaria comparata:  1) lit. a corn supply having been provided;  colloq. having provided corn supplies. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 3: (0)

Chapter 4: (1)

l.8:  omni Gallia vexata:  1) lit. all Gaul having been harassed;  2) colloq. when all Gaul was overrun. (Temporal clause.)

Chapter 5: (1)

l.11:  his mandatis:  1) lit. these things having been commissioned;  2) colloq. with these instructions. (Prepositional phrase.)

Chapter 6: (2)

ll.6-7:  circumiecta multitudine  hominum totis moenibus:  1) lit. a host of men having been thrown around all the walls; 2) colloq. after drawing a large number of men around all the walls. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

l.9:  testudo facta:  1) lit. a tortoise-shell having been formed; 2) colloq. forming a tortoise-shell. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 7: (1)

ll.9-10:  omnibus vicis aedificiisque ... incensis:  1) lit. all the villages and buildings having been burned; 2) colloq. when they had set fire to all the villages and buildings. (Temporal clause in active voice.)

Chapter 8: (3)

ll.6-7:  loco per castris ad aciem instuendam natura opportuno atque idoneo:  1) lit. the place in front of the camp (being) convenient and suitable for the battle-line to be drawn up;  2) colloq. since the place before the camp was naturally convenient and suitable for drawing up the battle-line.  (Causal clause in active voice.)

l.18:  hoc facto:  1) lit. this having been done;  2) colloq. after doing this. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

1.19:  duabus legionibus ... in castris relictis:  1) lit. the two legions having been left in the camp;  colloq. he left in the camp the two legions. (Main clause in active voice.)

Chapter 9: (1)

l.12:  ibi vadis repertis:  1) lit. fords having been discovered there;  2) colloq. they found fords there. (Main clause in active voice.)

Chapter 10: (1)

l.14-15:  concilio convocato:  1) lit. an assembly having been summoned;  2) colloq. having summoned an assembly. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

 Chapter 11: (5)

l.1:  ea re constituta:  1) lit. that matter having been determined; 2) colloq. in pursuance of their resolve. (Prepositional phrase.)

ll.6-7:  hac re ... per speculatores cognita:  1) lit. this situation having been learned of through his scouts; 2) colloq. learning this through his scouts. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

l.10:  confirmata re ab exploratoribus:  1) lit. the intelligence having been confirmed by his scouts;  2) colloq. when the intelligence had been confirmed by his scouts. (Temporal clause.)

l.21:  exaudito clamore:  1) the commotion having been heard;  2) colloq. as soon as they heard the noise. (Temporal clause in active voice.)

1.21:  perturbatis ordinis:  1) lit. the ranks having been broken;  2) colloq. they broke ranks. (Main clause in active voice.)

Chapter 12 : (5)

ll.3-4:  magno itinere confecto: 1) lit. a forced march having been accomplished;  2) colloq. making a forced march. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

l.8:   paucis defendentibus:  1) few defending (it);  2) colloq. though there were few to defend it. (Concessive clause.)

l.9:  castris munitis:  1) lit. the camp having been fortified;  2) colloq. he fortified his camp. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.12-13:  celeriter vineis ad oppidum actis:  1) lit. the mantlets having been swiftly brought up  against the town;  2) colloq. when the mantlets were brought up swiftly against the town. (Temporal clause.)

l.17:  petentibus Remis:  1) lit. the Remi requesting (it);  2) colloq. since the Remi were requesting (it). (Causal clause.)

Chapter 13 : (3)

ll.1-3:  obsidibus acceptis primis civitatis atque ipsius Galbae regis duobus filiis:  1) lit. the chief men of the state and (even) the two sons of King Galba himself having been receives (as) hostages;  2) colloq. (Caesar) received as hostages the chief men of the state and even the two sons of King Galba. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.3:  armisque omnibus ex oppido traditis:  1) lit. all the arms from the town having been handed over;  2) colloq. and all the arms in the town were delivered up. (Main clause.)

1.13:  passis manibus:  1) lit. their hands having been stretched out;  2) colloq. with outstretched hands. (Prepositional phrase.)

Chapter 14 : (0)

Chapter 15: (2)

l.5:  his traditis:  1) lit. these having been delivered;  2)  colloq. when these were delivered. (Temporal clause.)

l.6:  omnibusque armis ex oppido collectis:  1) lit. and all the arms having been collected from the town;  2) colloq. and (when) he had collected all the arms in the town. (Temporal clause in active voice.)epta

Chapter 16 : (0)

Chapter 17 : (6)

l.1:  his rebus cognitis:  1) lit. these things having been learned of;  2) colloq. upon this information. (Prepositional phrase.)

ll.12-13:  qua pulsa:  1) lit. which (legion) having been routed;  2) colloq. if this (legion) were routed. (Conditional clause.)

l.13:  impedimentisque direptis:  1) lit. and its baggage having been plundered;  2) colloq. and (if) its baggage were plundered. (Conditional clause.)

l.20:  teneris arboribus incisis atque inflexis:  1) lit. young trees having been notched and bent over;  2) colloq. they cut into young trees and bent them over. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.21:  crebris in latitudinem ramis enatis:  1) lit. the branches having grown out thick to the side;  2) colloq. and so by the thick horizontal growth of branches. (Prepositional phrase.)

ll.21-22:  rubis sentibusque interiectis:  1) lit. brambles and thorns having been interposed;  2) colloq. and by interposing brambles and thorns with them. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 18: (0)

Chapter 19 : (3)

1.1:  equitatu praemisso:  1) lit. the cavalry having been sent forward;  2) colloq. (Caesar) had sent the cavalry forward. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.17:  opere dimenso:  1) lit. the works having (already) been measured out;  2)  colloq. having already measured out the work. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

ll.23-24:  his facile pulsis ac proturbatis:  1) lit. the latter having easily been routed and thrown into confusion:  2) colloq. the latter were easily routed and thrown into confusion. (Main clause.)

Chapter 20 : (1)

ll.14-15:  nisi munitis castris:  1) lit. except upon the camp having been fortified;  2) colloq. unless the camp was fortified. (Conditional clause.)

Chapter 21 : (1)

l.1:  necessariis rebus imperatis:  1) lit. the necessary things having been ordered;  2) colloq. having given the necessary orders. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 22 : (3)

l.1:  instructo exercitu:  1) lit. the army having been drawn up;  2) colloq. the army was drawn up. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.14:  diversis legionibus:  1) lit. the legions having been turned in different directions;  2) colloq. the legions were facing in different directions. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.15-16:  sepibusque densissimis ... interiectis:  1) lit. and the very thick hedges having been interposed;  2) colloq. with the very thick hedges intervening. (Participial phrase.)

Chapter 23: (3)

l.10:  redintegrato proelio:  1) lit. the battle having been renwed;  2) colloq.  when the batttle was renewed. (Temporal clause.)

l.15:  nudatos castris:  1) lit. the camp having been exposed;  2) colloq. the camp was exposed. (Main clause.)

l.18:  duce Boduognato:  1) lit. Boduognatus (being) their leader;  2) under the leadership of Boduognatus. (Prepositional phrase.)

Chapter 24 : (1)

ll.20-21:  desperatis nostris rebus:  1) lit. our affairs having been despaired of;  2) colloq. despairing of our affairs. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 25 : (11)

ll.3-4:  signisque in unum locum collatis duodecimae legionis:  1) lit. the standards of the twelfth legion having been gathered into one place;  2) colloq. because the standards of the twelfth legion had been collected into one place. (Causal clause.)

ll.6-7:  quartae cohortis omnibus centurionibus occisis:  1) lit. all the centurions of the fourth cohort having been slain;  2) colloq. all the centurions of the fourth cohort had been slain. (Main clause.)

l.7:  signiferoque interfecto:  1) lit. the standard-bearer having been killed;  2) colloq. and the standard-bearer had been killed. (Main clause.)

ll.7-8:  signo amisso:  1) lit. the standard having been lost;  2) colloq. the standard had been lost. (Main clause.)

ll.8-9:  reliquarum cohortium omnibus fere centurionibus aut vulneratis aut occisis:  1) lit. almost all the centurions of the other cohorts having been either wounded or slain;  2) colloq. almost all the centurions of the other cohorts had been either wounded or slain. (Main clause.)

ll.9-10:  primipilo P. Sextio Baculo ... multis gravibusque vulneribus confecto:  1) lit. the chief centurion Publius Sextius Baculus having been (so) weakened by his many and severe wounds;  2) colloq. the chief centurion Publius Sextius Baculus had been so weakened by his many severe wounds. (Main clause.)

l.13:  deserto proelio:  1) lit. the battle having been abandoned;  2) colloq. retiring from the fight. (Participial clause in active voice.)

l.17:  scuto ... detracto:  1) lit. a shield having been snatched up (by him);  2) colloq. having snatched a shield. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

l.19:  centurionibusque nominatim appellato:  1) lit. and the centurions having been addressed by name;  2) colloq. and calling on the centurions by name. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

l.22:  spe illata militibus:  1) lit. hope having been brought to the soldiers;  2) colloq. as hope had been brought to the soldiers. (Causal clause.)

l.22:  redintegrato animo:  1) lit. their spirits having been renewed;  2) colloq. (as) their spirits had been renewed. (Causal clause.)

Chapter 26 : (3)

l.6:  quo facto:  1) lit. which thing having been done;  2) colloq. through this manoeuvre. (Prepositional phrase.)

ll.10-11:  proelio nuntiata:  1) lit. (the result of) the battle having been reported (to them);  2) colloq. hearing the news of the battle. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

l.11:  cursu incitato:  1) lit. their pace having been aroused;  2) colloq. having quickened their pace. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 27 : (2)

l.11:  his deiectis:  1) lit. these men having been thrown down;  2) colloq. when these men were cast down. (Temporal clause.)

ll.11-12:  coacervatis cadaveribus:  1) their corpses having been heaped up;  2) colloq. (when) their corpses were piled up in heaps. (Temporal clause.)

Chapter 28 : (3)

l.1:  hoc proelio facto:  1) lit. the battle having been undertaken;  2) colloq.  when the battle had been concluded. (Temporal clause.)

ll.1-3:  prope ad internecionem gente as nomine Nerviorum redacto:  1) lit. the tribe and (indeed) the name of the Nervii having been reduced almost to extermination;  2) colloq. the tribe and indeed the name of the Nervii had been brought to the verge of utter destruction. (Main clause.)

l.5:  hac pugna nuntiata:  1) lit. (the result of) this battle having been reported (to them);  2) colloq. when the result of the battle was reported to them. (Temporal clause.)

Chapter 29 : (4)

l.3:  hac pugna nuntiata:  1) the result of this battle having been reported (to them);  2) colloq. after they had heard the news of this battle. (Temporal clause in active voice.)

ll.4-5:  cunctis oppidis castellisque desertis:  1) lit. all their towns and forts having been abandoned;  2) colloq. abandoning all their towns and forts. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

ll.14-15:  iis  impedimentis ... citra flumen Rhenum depositis:  1) lit. such of their baggage-trains ... having been deposited on this side of the river Rhine;  2) colloq.  they set down those parts of their baggage-trains ...  on this side of the river Rhine. (Main clause in active voice.)

l.20:  pace facta:  1) lit. peace having been made;  2) colloq. (they) concluded a peace. (Main clause in active voice.)

Chapter 30 : (1)

l.6:  vineis actis:  1) lit. mantlets having been brought up;  2) colloq. when our mantlets had been pushed up. (Temporal clause.)

Chapter 31 : (1)

l.14:  traditis armis:  lit. their arms having been handed over;  2) colloq. if they delivered up their arms. (Conditional clause in active voice.)

Chapter 32 : (4)

l.5:  nisi armis traditis:  1) lit. except upon their arms having been given up;  2) colloq. save upon the surrender of their arms. (Prepositional phrase.)

l.8:  re nuntiata ad suos:  1) lit. the matter having been reported to their compatriots;  2) colloq. they reported this to their compatriots. (Main clause in active voice.)

ll.9-11:  armorum magna mutitudine de muro in fossa ... iacta:  1) lit. a great mass of weapons having been thrown from the wall into the ditch;  2) colloq.  a great mass of arms was cast down from the wall into the trench. (Main clause.)

l.14:  portis patefactis:  1) lit. the gates having been opened;  2) colloq. opening their gates. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 33 : (4)

l.5:  deditione facta:  1) lit. their surrender having been made;  2) colloq. after their surrender. (Prepositional phrase.)

ll.13-14:  celeriter ... ignibus significatione facta:   1) lit. the signal having been speedily given by fires;  2) colloq. the signal was immediately given by fires. (Main clause.)

l.19:  occisis ad hominum milibus quattuor:  1) lit. around four thousand men having been killed;  2) colloq. up to four thousand men were slain. (Main clause.)

l.21:  refractis portis:  1) lit. the gates having been broken down;  2) colloq.  after breaking open the gates. (Participial phrase in active voice.)

Chapter 34 : (0) 

Chapter 35 : (4)

l.1:  his rebus gestis:  1) these things having been done;  2) colloq.  after these achievements. (Prepositional phrase.)

l.1:  omni Gallia pacata:  1) lit. all Gaul having been subdued:  2) colloq.  the whole of Gaul being at peace. (Participial phrase.)

l.7:  inita proxima aestate:  1) lit. the next summer having been entered upon;  2) colloq. at the beginning of the next summer. (Prepositonal phrase.)

l.10:  legionibus in hibernacula deductis:  1) lit. his legions having been led into their winter huts;  2) colloq.     as soon as he had conducted his legions into their winter quarters. (Temporal clause in active voice.)

B.  Gerunds and Gerundives: (40)

Before studying this analysis the reader is invited to refer to Section B. of the appendix to the translation of  Caesar's "De Bello Gallico", Book III, published on this blog on 1st May 2012. References are given as for Section A. above. Each instance is then recorded in Latin, followed by a literal translation in Englsh and then one or two colloquial translations. In the case of the gerund only one translation is usually necessary. Finally, whether it is a gerund or gerundive and its precise grammatical usage is indicated in brackets.

Ch.1: 1.7:  coniurandi has esse causas: that the reasons for their conspiring were these.  (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch.1: ll.15-16:  qui ad conducendos homines facultates habebant:  1) lit. who had the means for (the purpose of) men being hired;  2) colloq. who had the means to hire men. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the accusative following the preposition ad in order to express purpose.)

Ch. 2: 1.12:  dubitandum non (esse) existimavit:  1) lit. he thought that it should not be hesitated;  2a) colloq. he thought that there should be no hesitation;  2b) colloq. he thought that he should not hesitate. (Gerundive as a predicative adjective used impersonally to express obligation.) (N.B. This is a good example of when it is difficult to do justice to the passive purpose of the gerundive.)

Ch. 5: ll.8-9:  ne cum tanta multitudine uno tempore confligendum sit:  1) lit. lest it was needing to be fought  with so great a multitude at one time; 2) colloq. lest they should have to contend with such a multitude at the same time. (Gerundive as a predicative adjective used impersonally to express necessity.)

Ch. 6:  ll.11-12:  in muro consistendi potestas erat nulli:  1) lit. the power of standing on the wall was to no one:  2) colloq. no one could keep a foothold on the wall. (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch. 6: ll.12-13:  cum finem oppugnandi nox fecisset:  when night had made an end of the assault. (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch. 7: l.6:  studium propugnandi:  an enthusiasm for fighting. (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch. 7: ll.6-7:  hostibus ... spes potiundi oppidi discessit:  1) lit. the expectation of the town being won abandoned the enemy; 2) colloq. the enemy lost hope of taking the town. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the objective genitive.)

Ch. 8: ll.6-7:  ad aciem instruendam:  1) lit. for (the purpose of) a battle-line to be drawn up:  2) colloq. to draw up a battle-line. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the accusative following the preposition ad to express purpose.)

Ch. 9: ll.4-5:  si ab illis initium transeundi fieret:  1) lit. if a beginning of crossing should be made by them; 2) colloq. if they should begin to cross. (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch. 9: ll.7-8:  ubi neutri transeundi initium faciunt: 1) when neither (side) made a beginning of crossing; 2) colloq. when neither side began to cross. (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch. 9: ll.16-17:  qui magno nobis usui ad bellum gerendum erant:  1) lit. which were of great use to us for (the purpose of) the war being waged;  2a) colloq. which were of great service to us in the conduct of the campaign;  2b) colloq. which we found very useful in carrying on the war. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the accusative following ad to express purpose.)

Ch. 10: ll.10-11:  de expugnando oppido et de flumine transeundo spem:  1) lit. their hopes with regard to the town being stormed and the river being crossed; 2) colloq. their hopes of storming the town and crossing the river. (Two gerundives as attributive adjectives qualifying nouns in the ablative following de.) (N.B. The order of words is an example of 'chiasmus'.)

Ch.10: l.13:  pugnandi causa:  for the sake of fighting. (Genitive of the gerund following the preposition causa to express purpose.)

Ch.10: l.14:  ad eos defendendos:  1) lit. for the purpose of those being defended;  2) colloq. for the purpose of defending those. (Gerundive as attributive adjective qualifying a pronoun in the accusative following the preposition ad to express purpose.)

Ch.12: ll.9-10:  quaeque ad oppugnandum usui erant:  (those things) which were of use for (the purpose of) the assault. (Accusative of the gerund following the preposition ad to express purpose.)

Ch.17: l.19:  praedandi causa:  for the sake of plundering. (Genitive of the gerund following the preposition causa to express purpose.)

Ch.17:  ll.25-26:  non  (sibi) omittendum (esse) consilium Nervii existimaverunt 1) lit. the Nervii thought that this advice was not meet to be neglected (by them);  2a) colloq. the Nervii did not think that this advice should be ignored by them; 2b) colloq. the Nervii considered that this plan should be tried out. (Gerundive as a predicative adjective expressing obligation.)

Ch.19: ll.20-21:  quod tempus inter eos committendi proelii convenerant:  1) lit. the time which they had agreed between them for battle to be joined; 2) colloq. the moment they had agreed upon for joining battle. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the objective genitive.)

Ch. 20: l.1:  Caesari omnia uno tempore erant agenda:   1) lit. everything was needing to be done by Caesar at one (and the same) time;  2a) colloq. it was necessary for Caesar to do everything at a single moment;  2b) colloq. Caesar had to do everything at one moment. (Gerundive as a predicative adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 20: l.2:   vexillum proponendum (erat):  1) lit. the standard (was) needing to be displayed;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to display the standard;  2b) colloq. he had to display the banner. (Gerundive as a predicative adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 20: ll.3-4:  signum tuba dandum (erat):  1) lit. the signal (was) needing to be given by the trumpet;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to give the signal by the trumpet (to stand to arms);  2b) colloq. he had to give the signal by the trumpet (to stand to arms). (Gerundive as a predicative adjective to express necessity.)

Ch. 20: l.4:  ab opere revocandi (erant) milites:  1) lit. the soldiers were needing to be recalled from the (fortification) works;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to recall the soldiers from the (fortification) works;  2b) colloq. he had to recall the soldiers from the (entrenchment) works. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 20: l.5:  aggeris petendi causa:  1) lit. for the sake of (material for) the rampart being sought;  2a) colloq. in search of material for the rampart;  2b) colloq. to acquire material for the rampart. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the genitive following the preposition causa to express purpose.)

Ch. 20: ll.4-6:  (ei) qui paulo longius ... processerant, arcessendi (erant):  1) lit. those who had proceeded a little further (away) were needing to be summoned;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to summon those who had proceeded somewhat further afield;  2b) colloq. he had to summon those who had proceeded somewhat further afield. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 20: l.6:  acies instruenda (erat):  1) lit. the battle-line was needing to be drawn up;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to form the battle-line;  2b) he had to form the battle-line. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 20: ll.6-7:  milites cohortandi (erant): 1) lit. the soldiers (were) needing to be encouraged;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to encourage the soldiers;  2b) colloq. he had to encourage the soldiers. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 20: l.7:  signum dandum (erat):  1) lit the signal was needing to be given;  2a) colloq. it was necessary to give the signal for action;  2b) colloq. he had to give the signal for action. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective expressing necessity.)

Ch. 21: l.2:  ad cohortandos milites:  1) lit. for the purpose of the soldiers being exhorted;  2) colloq. in order to exhort the soldiers. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the accusative following the preposition ad to express purpose.)

Ch. 21: l.9:  proelio committendi signum dedit:  1) lit. he gave the signal for battle to be joined; 2) colloq. he gave the signal to join battle. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the objective genitive.)

Ch. 21: l.10:  item cohortandi causa:  1) lit. for the sake of exhorting in like manner; 2) colloq. in order to give a similar harangue. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the genitive following the preposition causa to express purpose.)

Ch. 21: ll.11-12:  hostiumque tam paratus (fuit) ad dimicandum animus:  and so ready (was) the mind of the enemy for fighting. (Accusative of the gerund following the preposition ad to express purpose.)

Ch. 21: ll.12-15:  ut non modo ad insignia accommodanda, sed etiam ad galeas induendas scutisque tegimenta detrudenda tempus defuerit:  1) lit. that time was lacking not only for the military insignia to be fitted but also for their helmets to be put on and for the covers to be pushed off their shields; 2) colloq. that there was no space not only to fix their badges in place but also to put on their helmets and pull the leather cases from their shields. (Three gerundives as attributive adjectives all qualifying nouns in the objective genitive.) 

Ch. 21: ll.17-18:  in quaerendis suis:  1) lit. in his own (standards) being sought;  2) colloq. in searching for his own (standards). (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a pronoun in the ablative following the preposition in.)

Ch. 21: ll.21-22: ne ... pugnandi tempus dimitteret:  lest he should lose time for fighting. (Objective genitive of the gerund.)

Ch. 28: ll.8-9:  in commemorandi civitatis calamitate:  1) lit. in the calamity of their state being recounted;  2) colloq. in relating the disaster which had come upon their state. (Gerundive as an attributive adjective qualifying a noun in the ablative following the preposition in.)

Ch. 31: ll.9-11:  si ... stauisset Aduatucos esse conservandos:  1) lit. if he should resolve that the Aduatuci were suitable to be spared; 2a) colloq. if he were to decide that the Aduatuci should be spared;  2b) colloq. if he decided to save the Aduatuci (Gerundive as a predicative adjective expressing propriety.)

C.  Impersonal passives: (17) 

The system of references used below is as for Sections A. and B. above. Each instance of the impersonal passive is shown first in Latin and then by a literal English translation, which is often awkward. One or sometimes two translations into colloquial English then follow, although in a few cases the literal version alone is sufficient.     

Ch. 2: l.12:  dubitandum non (esse) existimavit:  see Section B. above.

Ch. 6: ll.4-5:  aegre eo die sustenatum est:  1) lit. it was withstood with difficulty on that day;  2a) colloq. it was with difficulty that they held out on that day;  2b.colloq. the defence was sustained with difficulty on that day

Ch. 7: ll.12-13:  ut fumo atque ignibus significaretur:  1) lit. as (it) was indicated by the smoke and fires; 2) colloq. as the smoke and fires showed.

Ch. 9: ll.6-7:  proelio equestri ... contendebatur:  1) lit. it was being fought in a cavalry battle;  2a) colloq. a cavalry battle was fought; 2b) colloq. they fought a cavalry battle.

Ch. 9: l1-12:  quod esse post nostra castra demonstratum est:  1) lit. which (as) it has been pointed out was behind our camp; 2) colloq. which we have shown was behind our camp.

Ch. 10: l.5:  acriter in eo loco pugnatum est:  1) lit. it was fiercely fought in that place;  2a) colloq. there was a fierce battle in that place;  2b) the engagement fought there was fierce.

Ch. 10: l.20:  his persuaderi ... non poterat:  1) lit. it could not be persuaded to these; 2) colloq. they could
not be persuaded. (N.B. This impersonal passive involves an intransitive verb which takes the dative case.)

Ch. 17: ll.23-24:  quo non modo non intrari sed ne perspici quidem posset:  1) lit. into which (it was) not only not (possible) that it be entered but (through which) it was not not even possible that it be seen;  2) colloq. which could not only not be penetrated but not even seen through. (Two instances of the impersonal passive are contained here.)

Ch.18: ll.8-9:  ut non facile introrsus perspici posset:  1) lit. such that it was not easily possible that it be seen through into its interior;  2) colloq. so that one could not easily see through it into its interior.

Ch. 20:  ll.2-3:  quod erat insigne cum ad arma concurri oporteret:  1) lit. which was the sign when it is due for it to be run together;  2a) colloq. which was sign when it is necessary to stand to arms;  2b) colloq. the time when one has to stand to arms. 

Ch. 31:  ll.1-2:  ubi vero moveri ... viderunt: but when they saw that it was being moved.

Ch. 32:  l.13:  ut postea perspectum est:  as was ascertained afterwards.

Ch. 33:  l.4:  ut intellectum est:  as it was learned (later).

Ch. 33: ll.14-15: eo concursum est: 1) lit. it was rushed to that place;  2a) colloq. there was a rush to that place;  2b) colloq. they rushed to that place.

Ch. 33: ll.15-16:  pugnatumque ab hostibus ... acriter est:  1) lit. it was fought by the enemy fiercely;  2) colloq. the enemy fought fiercely. 

Ch 33: ll.16-18:  ut a viris fortibus ... pugnari debuit:  1) lit. as it ought to have been fought by brave men;  2) colloq. as brave men ought to fight. 








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