When at length all hope that he would return was finally abandoned, some
of the party, in the course of the despairing consultations which the
unhappy fugitives held with one another, said that they _must not_
remain any longer where they were, but must make their escape from that
spot at all hazards. "Yes," said Brutus, "we must indeed make our escape
from our present situation, but we must do it with our hands, and not
with our feet." He meant by this that the only means now left to them to
evade their enemies was self-destruction. When his friends understood
that this was his meaning, and that he was resolved to put this design
into execution in his own case, they were overwhelmed with sorrow.
Brutus took them, one by one, by the hand and bade them farewell. He
thanked them for their fidelity in adhering to his cause to the last,
and said that it was a source of great comfort and satisfaction to him
that all his friends had proved so faithful and true. "I do not complain
of my hard fate," he added, "so far as I myself am concerned. I mourn
only for my unhappy country. As to myself, I think that my condition
even now is better than that of my enemies; for though I die, posterity
will do me justice, and I shall enjoy forever the honor which virtue and
integrity deserve; while they, though they live, live only to reap the
bitter fruits of injustice and of tyranny.

"After I am gone," he continued, addressing his friends, as before,
"think no longer of me, but take care of yourselves. Antony, I am sure,
will be satisfied with Cassius's death and mine. He will not be disposed
to pursue you vindictively any longer. Make peace with him on the best
terms that you can."

Brutus then asked first one and then another of his friends to aid him
in the last duty, as he seems to have considered it, of destroying his
life; but one after another declared that they could not do any thing to
assist him in carrying into effect so dreadful a determination. Finally,
he took with him an old and long-tried friend named Strato, and went
away a little, apart from the rest. Here he solicited once more the
favor which had been refused him before,--begging that Strato would hold
out his sword. Strato still refused. Brutus then called one of his
slaves. Upon this Strato declared that he would do any thing rather than
that Brutus should die by the hand of a slave. He took the sword, and.
with his right hand held it extended in the air. With the left hand he
covered his eyes, that he might not witness the horrible spectacle.
Brutus, rushed upon the point of the weapon with such fatal force that
he fell and immediately expired.

Thus ended the great and famous battle of Philippi, celebrated in
history as marking the termination of the great conflict between the
friends and the enemies of Caesar, which agitated the world so deeply
after the conqueror's death. This battle established the ascendency of
Antony, and made him for a time the most conspicuous man, as Cleopatra
was, the most conspicuous woman, in the world.

[...]
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